A while back the People’s Republik of Boulder passed an ordinance demanding owners of nebulously-defined “assault weapons” register, surrender or move their arms out of the city. So far the city has registered 85 weapons, which would seem to indicate most Boulder gun owners responded with “fuck off, slavers!” Excerpt:
With only 21 days left to go before the certification period closes, a total of 86 certificates have been issued (there are just over 100,000 residents in the college town). Two of those certifications were for the same firearm shared by a husband and wife (for some reason), that means only 85 guns have been certified so far.
City Attorney Tom Carr, who drafted the law to try to fit “the council’s vision,” openly admits that it’ll be difficult to enforce.
“I can’t imagine a way to do proactive enforcement,” Carr said. “Obviously, there’s no circumstance where we go door-to-door and ask people if they’ve violated the law. So, I think it would mostly be responsive.”
Boulder resident John Ramey, who worked together with Councilwoman Mirabai Nagle to propose an alternative to the ban, made the following statement via email when the law was being proposed:
“By definition, effective governing must be practical and enforceable. When something isn’t enforceable, like the war on drugs, that’s a huge sign that the underlying legal model doesn’t match the actual problems and realities.”
Take a good look at that last sentence. Boulder has done precisely this; created a law that is impossible to enforce. In fact it’s worse, it is a law that potentially – indeed, almost certainly – makes criminals out of formerly law-abiding citizens. Feature or bug? Ayn Rand may have foreseen it:
“Did you really think we want those laws observed?” said Dr. Ferris. “We want them to be broken. You’d better get it straight that it’s not a bunch of boy scouts you’re up against… We’re after power and we mean it… There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What’s there in that for anyone? But just pass the kind of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced or objectively interpreted – and you create a nation of law-breakers – and then you cash in on guilt. Now that’s the system, Mr. Reardon, that’s the game, and once you understand it, you’ll be much easier to deal with.”
Boulder has done some stupid shit; this is really just the latest in a long string. And, sadly, the rest of the once and former Colorado may not be far behind in the Stupid Sweepstakes where gun control is concerned, despite growing evidence that the would-be gun-grabbers proposals simply don’t work.
It’s not just Colorado. New Yorkers’ compliance with their misnamed “SAFE Act” is so low as to be barely noticeable.
So where does this end? On the one hand, when new laws have no effect, or a negative effect, on lowering crime, pols clamor for more laws, with which the formerly law-abiding increasingly show disregard; thus spawning calls for more restrictions, which piss off more gun owners who reply by refusing to comply…
Odds are this won’t end well.