Peter Lapointe: Let’s control the distribution of ammunition

Published: 8/12/2019 7:00:18 PM

It is time to apply a zero tolerance standard to gun violence, and the most effective way to do that is to control the ownership of ammunition rather than curtail the right to bear arms.

The cost of such a program can easily be covered through a tax on the sale of ammunition. We can ensure rights guaranteed under the Second Amendment and allow people to have their guns, gun shops and gun shows.

Why not enact legislation that creates a registry for every round of ammunition that is purchased? Shell casings can be given serial numbers so every single round could be traced back through to the original purchaser. Any individual whose rounds were used for the commission of a crime would be held liable for aiding and abetting the criminal.

To do this, separate the sale of guns from the sale of ammunition. Just as we control the distribution of alcohol, we should control the distribution of ammunition. Sales should be tightly controlled and the quantity of ammunition one can possess should be limited.

To avoid stockpiling of ammunition while legislation is pending, the law should make any non-government issued round of ammunition illegal and subject to criminal offense.

Once enacted, provide a 30-day grace period to return all non-government issued ammunition with an exchange up to the established limit. In order to purchase or replace ammunition, the spent shell casings will need to be returned.

Finally, require permits for any firearm with renewal required every few years. The renewal would include an on-site inspection of gun storage facilities and certification of all ammunition for every firearm. Lawful gun owners will have their rights protected and personal safety assured.

The same 30-day grace period would be required to register the firearm and obtain the permit. Illegal gun owners and would-be criminals will be exposed by possessing illegal ammunition, holding expired permits or possession with non-existent permits. Possession of a firearm without a permit or possession of non-government issued ammunition would carry stiff penalties whether or not a crime has been committed.

Peter Lapointe


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