November 27, 2022

Office of Gun Violence Prevention:  What Could Go Wrong?

It would be pretty challenging to find anyone who poo-poohs the devastating crush of violence that comes from someone misusing a gun – the heartache is real, no matter one’s political bent.  Unfortunately, some on the Left don’t buy this when it comes to the Second Amendment community.

Many in the pro-gun world are done with the hand wringing – the angst – the pearl clutching of the so-called progressives. It’s nothing but virtue signaling that does nothing to get to the heart of the problem.  Most of the time, good solutions are found by looking at whether something is either “right” or “wrong.”  The popular way to do things now is to create a task force, a commission or a board to evaluate the situation.  Generally speaking, such things are a waste of time and money.  Now California’s Attorney General Bonta has jumped into such a fray, with his recent launch of his Office of Gun Violence Prevention.

At his press conference announcing the new office, he promised to push more unconstitutional legislation and cited all kinds of studies – he brags that California is leading the charge in reducing gun deaths and that guns are the greatest killer of children.  But there’s an awful lot of stuff he neglected to mention – especially when it comes to crime in the Golden State, and who exactly are committing the crimes.

Tragically, one child firearm death is one too many.  It’s important, however to understand what the word “child” means when it comes to gun statistics. A 19 year old is still considered a child.  This flies in the face of the 18 year old who is legally deemed to be an adult.  Definitely not a child.

Obviously, this is a significant detail that presents a picture far different than what is portrayed in the media and by left-leaning politicians.

In his recent article “Sorry Beto, ‘Gun Violence’ Isn’t the Biggest Killer of Kids in America” posted by The Truth About Guns, attorney Konstadinos Moros digs deep, providing the appropriate context to the issue of child gun deaths (Read the full article HERE.}

In reviewing the data, Moros states “It largely depends on how you define “children.” Some people think of children as anything from toddlers through age 12. Others consider children to be anyone who isn’t 18 yet.  That distinction matters tremendously in discussing how many children die from gun-related incidents.”

These are very necessary differences: “Indeed, that’s something astute readers should watch out for – many articles claiming record amounts of “children” dying from gun-related causes reach that conclusion by calling 18- and 19-year-old adults “children.” That’s exactly what this Axios article does, for example, to claim that 4,368 “children” were killed by guns.”

“The CDC “WONDER” data (see article for details) tells us that nationally, there were 2,281 gun-related deaths among children and teens ages 0 to 17 in 2020.”

This changes the narrative significantly – by over 2,000.

To reiterate – gun deaths are tragic. Responsible gun owners, however, are not at fault, but the blame has been falsely laid at our feet. And although the AG and his fellow anti-gun zealots love to cite and manipulate data, there are facts they consistently – and conveniently – ignore.

Case in point:  Preliminary data by the Public Policy Institute of California reported four of California’s major cities—Los Angeles, Oakland, San Diego, and San Francisco—show increases in property and violent crime numbers in 2021. In particular, they say, “ troubling increase in homicides that we saw in 2020 appears to continue—homicides in these cities were up by about 17% in 2021.”

And, the PPIC also reports that the 2020 violent crime rate in California ranked 16th, which is higher than the national rate. Yes, robbery and rape decreased, but homicides increased by a frightening 30% and aggravated assaults increased by 7.5%.  In addition, drug overdoses and poisonings were up by an extraordinary amount,  83.6% from 2019 to 2020 among children and adolescents.

Recently a Wall Street Journal article reported that in California, teenage suicide increased 24 percent, leading to 134 deaths in 2020. In contrast, only 23 California minors died of Covid-19.  The enormity of the pandemic’s impact will likely not be known for years.

Konstadinos Moros closed his piece by stating “If they really cared about saving children’s lives, they’d focus their energy on reducing the allure of gangs, combating depression in teens, and educating all children about safe gun handling.”  GOC agrees wholeheartedly.

Evan Symon also wrote about the AG’s new office in the California Globe, quoting Xavier Rowe, a  gun violence statistician and legislation researcher in Dallas.  “Bonta is crazy for doing this,” he explained.  They’re trying to tie firearms in with public health. Through a new agency no less. They’re saying it is to reduce gun violence, but honestly, it seems like it won’t do anything.”

“Ask any responsible gun owner and they’re as horrified by the mass shooting incidents as any other person. But the thing to tackle is mental health here. Go to the root cause. Study these incidents. Look for early warning signs. Because, as we’ve seen in Europe and other places with restrictive gun laws, it doesn’t really stop these people… More government offices and red tape aren’t going to do much, if anything. We need real tried and true ways to reduce this via mental health services and studying these issues. But Bonta obviously isn’t doing the smart thing.”

The post AG Announces New “Office” to Push More Failed Gun Policies appeared first on Gun Owners of California.

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