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How’s That Registration Working Out for Ya?

Connecticut officials are warning of dire consequences for failure to comply. After all, where to gun owners belong if not in jail?

Mr. Lawlor, like most government officials, seems to think he and his buddies have invented policy out of whole cloth, and that the population has no choice but to shuffle along and obey. But weapons registration laws have a history—a consistent history, as I’ve written, of noncompliance and defiance.

They know we won’t comply. And to them, that’s just fine. Because then, in their minds, you’ll end up where you belonged in the first place. Really, if you think about it, if you were an owner and a gun was stolen, are you going to call the cops about it? So how do these laws really help things? They don’t. They just make it more likely gun owners are going to be uncooperative with police when it comes to enforcing laws.

4 Responses to “How’s That Registration Working Out for Ya?”

  1. Archer says:

    The irony is that if a gun owner chooses to not register his/her guns – thereby becoming a “gun criminal” and “prohibited person” under CT law – he/she cannot be charged under the statute requiring mandatory reporting of lost/stolen guns. It no longer applies to them (see Haynes v. U.S.).

    These laws never do what the people pushing for them promise they’ll do.

  2. I once spent some time in a jurisdiction that required registration of handguns. I did not register, under a somewhat strained (but I think legitimate) reading of the definition of “resident.” It was probably one of those situations where I would beat the rap but not the ride.

    It certainly changed my views on the relationship of the citizen to law enforcement. I was not inclined to contact, assist, or otherwise interact with LE in any manner, even if I witnessed a legitimately concerning situation. I was really not willing to contact the cops for anything less than I would be willing to employ deadly force myself for, i.e. kids or handicapped people facing death, serious bodily injury, or sexual assault.

    This seems similar to the situation in other communities which are alienated, such as illegal aliens, urban ghettos, etc.

    It is honestly a net loss for society in many ways; when large blocks of the population lose trust in the LE/legal/justice system, you basically lose a ton of free eyes and ears which serves as sensors and early warning systems for actual violent crime. People are more inclined to mind their own business, more likely to deal with problems “in house” (leading to extrajudicial security arrangements in some cases), and generally fail to assist the police in maintaining public order.

    It undercuts the whole idea of Peelian policing. Even the military conducting counterinsurgency operations knows you have to win the support of the people to be successful as maintaining order.

    The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder.
    The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon the public approval of police actions.
    Police must secure the willing co-operation of the public in voluntary observation of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public.

    The degree of co-operation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force.
    Police seek and preserve public favour not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law.
    Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice, and warning is found to be insufficient.
    Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.
    Police should always direct their action strictly towards their functions, and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary.
    The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.

    • Lyle says:

      The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime…”

      No it isn’t. That’s one of the huge lies of our age. The basic mission of police is to retaliate against crime by bringing the perpetrator to justice. Big difference. One is for a police state, the other is for a free state.

      • Alpheus says:

        On a related note, this is what bothers me about our (aka society’s) attitude about Child Protective Services. If a Social Worker visits a family, sees some evidence that something’s wrong, and does nothing (or make a note of it, etc)…and a child dies, it’s “The Social Worker should have done something!” This, in turn, leads to Special Powers, where Social Workers find themselves with the power to do things–particularly, to take children–even when there’s no evidence that anything is wrong.

        Every time we blame a social worker, and not the perpetrator of evil, for something wrong, the grip of the iron fist grows a little stronger.

        The same holds for the police. If we expect them to prevent crime, yet crime occurs anyway (as almost certainly always will), we’ll demand greater powers for the police…all to pursue an impossible goal!

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