There are so many loopholes in US federal gun control that it is meaningless. Control is patchwork across the nation which means you can have very tight gun control in some areas and still have incredible rates of gun violence.
This isn’t a situation of “someone snapping” as our resident troll is belching from under the bridge. This is a constant level of violence only made possible by the widespread availability of firearms of all kinds across the US. The claim that gun ownership makes Americans safe, which is clearly the claim of the gun industry through its lobbying body the NRA, is completely refuted by the facts. The largest ownership of guns in civilian hands in the world makes Americans far more unsafe than they would be otherwise.
Chicago which has some of the strictest gun control laws in North America - tighter than any Canadian city - has some of the highest levels of gun violence in the world. The guns come in from across the country, there is a ring of gun dealers all around the county limits.
And this idea that automatic weapons are being controlled in America is also complete BS. If you can buy a semi-automatic AR-15 which is the civilian version of an M-16 you can easily own a weapon that can fire almost as many rounds as an M-16 as Jerry Miculek demonstrates on a video on this page.
You can get a “hellfire trigger”, or a “bump” stock and turn your semi-auto AR-15 or AK-47 into a full auto military grade weapon with easy. Or an online kit that transforms an AR-15 into an M-16.
Any sane gun control policy doesn’t need to know if someone is going to snap or not, it makes sure most of the weapons aren’t there in the first place. Why do some US citizens need to be armed like there is a looming war, the British aren’t coming anymore. This idea that the 2nd Amendment protects Americans is from the 18th not 21st century. It is stuck over 200 years in the past. It was created at a time when most Americans lived in the country where the nearest neighbor could be miles away and the entire nation was under the threat of British invasion which did occur in 1814. At a time when all weapons were muzzle-loaders and had poor accuracy even the rifled muzzle-loaders which struggled to hit human sized targets at more than a couple hundred yards.
If you know what you’re doing with a handgun you can hit a target at 1,000 yards with a handgun now as Jerry Miculek demonstrates here.
In the 1780s when the 2nd Amendment was enacted it took a rifleman up to a minute to load his weapon that was often so inaccurate that it couldn’t reliably hit a target at 100 yards, it’s why soldiers went into combat in large organized lines that stood facing each other and shot volley after volley.
As we just saw in Las Vegas, one man had enough firepower to kill 59 and wound over 500 in minutes. It would take a company of 1780s US militia to do that and they had actual enemies to face. All we have now in the US is US civilians attacking US civilians. Or police who are so paranoid about being shot by armed civilians that they kill thousands a year.
There have been over 1,500 mass shootings since Sandy Hook, the question isn’t if there will be another mass shooting, it is when and they are almost daily events now somewhere in the US. If they’re not large enough they aren’t even reported.
This is what the kind of lax gun laws that the US gun manufacturers are imposing on the US through the NRA lobby is creating. The equivalent of a Vietnam War for the US every two years.
People can still commit violent crimes without firearms, but it is almost impossible to do something like the Las Vegas killer did without firearms. It makes it very easy for someone to kill and maim a huge number of people very easily. He probably had something like a gat trigger, or a full auto M-16 mod and high capacity mags of up to 100 rounds. That was sustained gunfire coming from that hotel window on the level of a military action and the casualties reflect this.
The US is never going to be safe from rampant gun violence as long as the gun industry through the NRA is allowed to dictate to Congress and the Oval Office exactly what the gun control laws are. The head of the NRA is paid millions of dollars to lobby for the gun industry, clearly the NRA is no longer a organization that protects citizens rights, it is a private sector lobby group.
The US needs effective gun control laws that actually get millions of guns that are not needed for anything off the streets. Canada has effective gun control laws, but if you are a hunter, a farmer, work in the bush in bear country or more you can still acquire almost any weapon you need.
I hunted decades ago. I took a hunter and gun safety course when I was 16 which was required to get a hunting license. When I turned 18 I applied for and got a firearms acquisition certificate from the RCMP that took 6 weeks after a background check. I eventually owned a high powered scoped .308 for hunting large game like moose and deer, a semi-auto 12 gauge for migratory wildfowl, a scoped .22 caliber for grouse and other upland gamebirds and for recreation I had a replica of an 1800s muzzle-loader.
I had friends that had .357 or .44 handguns because they were prospectors or did timber cruising for the forest industry and needed bear protection, but there were strict conditions attached people didn’t carry them around everywhere for “safety” creating a risk for everyone else. We could get all these weapons and still can, but they are tightly controlled. For a time here all firearms were supposed to be part of a national registry that the police could use to determine if anyone they might be interacting with had a weapon. The conservatives didn’t like it and killed the law over the protests of the police across the country because it saved lives.
The US can do much, much better, it doesn’t need to have hundreds of millions of guns in civilian hands where they kill about 30,000 civilians each year and create the kind of tensions and paranoia that lead people to frequently use those weapons.