Niagara Gazette

January 17, 2013

HAMILTON: Can there be a change of mind on guns?

By Ken Hamilton
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — “You ain’t gonna change their minds,” said the Yankee fan, as he sat in the dental office waiting for his wife. He was responding to the statement that both the governor’s and the president’s new gun rules would make the criminals very happy.

I didn’t have time to clarify if it was the politicians or if it was the criminals that weren’t inclined to change their minds about non-effective law-making or, in the criminals case, the intent to not follow the new law; and I can’t understand why the politicians don’t understand that.

If what one US Attorney said is true, then the politicians should understand it. The attorney said that, upon meeting most of the politicians in his district, he was convinced of but one thing, “... and that is that if they were not involved in politics, then they would be involved in some other criminal activity.”

While I found his remarks humorous at first, I also understood that there were elements of truth in it. One has to wonder about the Senate, the Assembly and the governor’s passing of what is hailed the toughest trampling of the Constitution in the country. Thus doing so, you would wonder if the politicians understood the criminal mind, or if they actually had what the attorney stated.

In all likelihood, the net effect will be that only law-abiding citizens will be following the more restrictive laws, as it only disempowers those who obey the law and empowers those who do not.

Do you really think that the criminal elements are going to register their guns and reduce the size of their magazines? In fact, if the intent of the legislation was to reduce the amount of guns that are in the state, even the earliest suggestion of so doing has had the opposite effect. There are likely more guns in the state today than at any time in history.

Coincidental to that, there is also the likelihood that, if compliance by good citizens is slow, the law will create more criminals in the state than ever before — all while not saving a single life — because the real criminals are not going to follow the law.

If politicians’ thinking are indeed just a hair’s breadth from that of a criminals, you would think that they would understand that. But, like the law’s stated intent, they have failed at even that.

There’s another segment in the public sector whose thinking is also similar to those of a criminal, and these people are not as exuberant about the new laws as are their political bosses. For you see, these are the people who have to go out, find and fight the actual criminals.

And not only is it alright for policemen to think like a criminal, it is what we want them to do. When my uncle once went to the woods to rung his beagles, his hopes were that those canines would think less like a dog and more like a rabbit when they were on the trail of those critters. Our hopes are similar to my uncle’s when it comes to the cops chasing the robbers.

But, there is a difference between the police and the criminals. Most police officers are constitutionalist and believe in the sanctity of that document and they try to keep that document between their conduct and that of the criminals. They understand that with a free and moral society, their jobs become easier than it would be with a society that once knew freedom and now feel themselves sinking deeper and deeper into the sands of intransigency as their feet are washed with the constant waves of political expediency. They would rather that the politicians pass laws that keep criminals locked up, rather than the ones that bind a free citizenry.

No one wants to see a repeat of Sandy Hook, or a shootout of any kind — especially the police. There is little in it for them.

But, if a criminal decides that they want to shoot up something, there isn’t a good cop out there who given the choice between filling out a report on a dead perpetrator or filling out one on a dead family would regret the latter more than the former. I do wonder, though, if politicians gain something from the reporting of both of those potential situations.

What do you think? Do you think that we can change their minds?

Contact Ken Hamilton at