It's Finally Time to Follow Australia

It's Finally Time to Follow Australia

In April 1996, some lunatic opened fire in the Tasmanian town of Port Arthur, killing 35 and wounding 23.

Port Arthur involved only a single shotgun and a single deranged individual. Yet, Australians were sensible enough to just say “enough”. They didn’t have a lengthy and ridiculous debate about mental illness. They immediately banned semi-automatic and automatic weapons and severely tightened the rules on any civilian owning a firearm. Civilians turned in over 643,000 firearms in the 12 months that followed.

Today, Australians face a fine of $225,000 and 14 years in jail for owning an unregistered firearm. While some estimates suggest that there are still over 200,000 unregistered firearms in the country (a short 2016 anmesty resulted in the removal of at least 26,000 guns), Australia has significantly reduced its gun exposure and its gun violence over the last 22 years.

Port Authur wasn’t a school shooting, but Columbine, Virginia Tech and Newtown all were. Any one of these should have been more than enough to get the U.S. to set forth sensible gun legislation. Parkland now must be.

We need to tell the Republican Party to take their silly gun culture and their misinterpretation of (perversion of) the Second Amendment and place it where the sun doesn’t shine. It is time for us to just follow plain logic, and begin a lengthy process of disarming the population.

Ari Socolow
Ari Socolow: Ari Socolow is the Chief Economist and Editor-in-Chief at BestCashCow. He is particularly interested in issues relating to bank transparency and the climate crisis. Since co-founding BestCashCow in 2005, Ari has been frequently cited in the media as an expert on local and national savings accounts, CD products, mortgage and loan products and credit card rewards products.

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