hey you! sign up and become a contributing writer to this site! no blogging experience required! register here then leave a comment here!!
« Bridging 96: Detroit to Grand Rapids
» Hollywood on the Huron, filming in Michigan

Gun violence, gun control, bullet control, alternatives?

11.04.08 | technician | In technology

Within the United States violent crime isn’t something particularly unique to the city of Detroit but around the developed world it is a problem that particularly affects our country. Europe, Japan and other modern Asian countries, and even our neighbor to the north, Canada, don’t have the level of violent crime that we do — clearly strict gun control laws need these countries more, and not less, safe. Part of the reason is that those countries don’t have the level of gun ownership that we do. And in our country victims of gun-related violence are shot and killed by guns owned illegally anyways. These victims are caught by surprise, often not even the intended target, and even if those victims own guns and happen to have the weapon on their person they wouldn’t ever have a chance to use them.

Part of the problem is the ease of availability. Back when cigarettes were two dollars per pack any high school student could afford to buy cigarettes. Now they might think twice about starting this habit. And guess what, the number of young people who smoke has gone down. But any high school student who wants to buy a gun can afford to buy one if they can find someone to sell them one. This is easy because there are so many used guns swirling around the underground market in the United States and this number keeps increasing because it’s still relatively easy and cheap for Americans to legally buy guns which then disappear into the black market. The other piece you need when shooting a gun is the bullet. Remember that Chris Rock skit about bullet control? He jokes that bullets should cost of $5,000 apiece. If the bullets were that expensive there would no longer be innocent bystanders. And a guy about to shoot another guy would think twice about wasting $5,000.
I think that made a lot of people think. Bullets are cheap right now, pennies, just like cigarettes used to be. But is it a constitutional right to be able to fire away as many as you want? Or is it something that citizens should only need to do when they have to in which case how much would you be willing to spend on the bullet that will save your life?

So that got me thinking further about bullet control. First of all, bullets shouldn’t be cheap. Bullets as a whole have a pretty high cost to society which is divided among each bullet meaning that bullets right now are cheaper than their true cost. So if bullets are going to be taxed they need to be tracked. So what if we are able to track each box of bullets to the person who bought them. What if each bullet found in a gun violence victim could be tracked to the person who bought the bullets. This could certainly help police in solving gun violence crimes. It would still be possible to buy bullets on the black market but they would be much more expensive than legal bullets. (How many people buy black-market cigarettes?) Maybe high enough to make criminals think twice. It would also allow law enforcement to shut down the vendors who are supplying the most criminals.
I did a little googling and it turns out that my idea wasn’t actually new. There have been proposals for laws where guns would have to be made to imprint a serial number on the casing of bullets as they were fired. Unfortunately, this doesn’t help if the police don’t know who owns a gun, if someone scratches the imprinting mechanism from the gun, or if the shell casing is picked up by the shooter.

But is it possible to have the serial number in the shell, unique to the box it came from, independent of the gun firing it, and as it would be stuck in the victim it would be harder for the perpetrator to retrieve.

No idea is to promote the use of tasers for self-defense. Tasers are usually nonlethal (every once in awhile people die) so they’re not very useful for committing murder but they’re much safer when used accidentally. They are easy to carry around. Maybe they are the right alternative for self protection.


Leave a comment

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. Subscribe to these comments.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>



« Bridging 96: Detroit to Grand Rapids
» Hollywood on the Huron, filming in Michigan