NRA Using Switzerland as Example? Not so Fast

Many opponents of any gun control measures in the United States use the country of Switzerland as an example of how guns are supposedly not the problem when it comes to number of gun deaths.  So I suppose we should have gun laws that mimic those of the Swiss and I’m sure gun control opponents would agree.  Or would they?

An article from the BBC delves into the gun culture of Switzerland and notes a few points worth mentioning at length since gun advocates would probably not be so keen to hold the Swiss as an example for proper gun laws:

Gun laws (in Switzerland) concerning army weapons have tightened. Although it is still possible for a former soldier to buy his firearm after he finishes military service, he must provide a justification for keeping the weapon and apply for a permit.

Neither of these is even remotely necessary when buying a gun in the U.S., of course.  It continues:

Mathias, a PhD student and serving officer…”And we don’t get bullets any more,” he adds. “The Army doesn’t give ammunition now – it’s all kept in a central arsenal.” This measure was introduced by Switzerland’s Federal Council in 2007.

So gun but no bullets.  Wonder how the NRA feels about that?  It goes further:

“Shooting instructors at rifle clubs always control who is shooting,” he says. And all ammunition bought at the club has to be used there.

“When the shooting is finished and the person wants to leave the club, the instructor will look to see how many bullets have been shot and will demand the rest are given back.”

NRA advocating that type of control?  Nope.  Yet they use the Swiss as an example of a society with high gun ownership and a lower number of gun murders than the United States.  Maybe everyone should play along and ask for Swiss-type gun laws.  Then let’s see how closely the NRA continues to uphold the gun-toting Swiss as their ace-in-the-hole argument.

Fear drives opposition to gun control – CNN.com

Fear drives opposition to gun control – CNN.com.

Excellent commentary with a lot of good points included.  One of the most important made here is the effect unrealistic psychological fear created by sensationalist media has had on nearly everyone.  It definitely can’t be stressed enough when debating the reality of these issues.