If one of the concerns about gun sales is that there aren’t enough checks on a person’s ability to use a gun safely, there is an alternative to legislative gun control. Specifically, we can use voluntary agreements and NGOs. This discussion is going to be brief. It simply gives a rough outline for a suggestion, but it can work as the foundation for a more robust proposal in the future.
Does gun control work? Maybe it will help a little, but we need to think about gun control as a potential intervention for an epidemiological problem. At least in some cases, gun control advocates use anecdotes. This includes references to Australian measures. But whether or not gun control works, we can still implement voluntary solutions, which no reasonable person should oppose. It fits into the ideal of the invisible hand of the free market, as well as recognition of the public health issues of gun related violence.
Training & Background Checks
To start, consider that proper training involving firearms is admittedly important. It’s reasonable to think that most people would agree with the need for training. We just shouldn’t have a legal mandate to require it. Nor should we have gun control laws that background checks mandatory. We shouldn’t have a government database of gun ownership either. But if there were a network of non-governmental training programs and background evaluation programs and stores that took part in these programs, we could have a safer environment. And we could do this all without the need for any government intervention.
While it would take a while for widespread adoption, a non profit could easily be established, which would provide training, at a reduced cost, as well as an evaluation of one’s personal capacity to use a firearm safely. The organization could even be member owned, possibly with the gun stores as the members. This is voluntary solution. It is up to the individual store’s owner(s) to decide whether or not to be involved.
Well Regulated Militias
This option would in no way violate the Second Amendment. In fact, it would help provide for its proper enforcement. As has been mentioned in past articles, the Second Amendment exists to promote an alternative to a standing military. It is for this reason that “well regulated” is used in the text. The phrase does not mean that the government should regulate militias. It means that militias should be well trained and properly maintained. The non-profit organization suggested in this short essay could help serve to ensure that militias are indeed “well regulated.”
This discussion is just gives the basic idea. So, feel free to comment using Disqus. Let us know what you think of the idea of having a voluntary association, as an alternative to a police state telling us how to handle gun related issues and other issues.