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There are now over 300,000,000 guns in the U.S., roughly 1 for every person.   We need to focus on the ammo.   If police stations were the only legal place to buy bullets, then those contemplating mass murder will have a much tougher time stockpiling the ammo.   The Aurora shooter, for instance, ordered 6000 rounds mail order.   That should not be legal.   Each bullet would be coded, identified as belonging to the purchaser.   A waiting period could be instituted so that people would have to wait two weeks for the ammo to ship to the station.   During that period, background checks could be done if warranted.

Take the profits from the bullet sales and use it for gun safety training, and for aiding those who are victims of gun violence.

Police departments would also be the ideal place to administer a gun buy back program once a necessary ban on assault weapons is implemented.    I think police departments in particular would be for such a system.

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Comment Preferences

  •  An interesting idea, however (9+ / 0-)

    since it became wildly popular for police to pepper-spray 80 year old peaceful protestors, and every traffic stop is an excuse for a strip search, I'm not trusting the police to do anything but instill terror these days.

    Get your goddamned guns out of my church. This means you.

    by commonmass on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:47:08 AM PST

  •  While it likeley would not have helped this time (4+ / 0-)

    (the killer used weapons and ammo his mother had stockpiled, and she'd have passed any such background check, gun safety and likely accumulated plenty of ammo over her lifetime)

    The suggestion isn't a bad idea, especially if it helped with things like gun safety training, background checks and buybacks.

    I can't see it flying politically though.   Regulating gun and ammo sales is one thing, making the only source a government institution is probably a bridge too far for even discussion in this country.

    •  I Would Not Give Up the Fight So Easily (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ColoTim, SoCaliana

      If you say its impossible, it is.   Force the opposition / NRA to argue against it, at least.   I'd love to be able to say 'no law abiding citizen would have any cause for concern.'

      As for this shooting, mom and son were using a ton of ammo probably every weekend.   At some point they'd run out.  

      Did the boy, who also was shooting at these ranges, pass a background check?   Would his obvious mental issues escape notice with the local police?

      All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

      by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:10:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's a discussion worth having (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SoCaliana

        Nationalizing the ammunition industry (which is essentially what you are proposing) is certainly a good place to bargain from, and much better than just giving up.

        I think in the end, the most that the electorate will tolerate, even now, is regulation of the private industry (hopefully including private sales such as gun shows, not just "shops").   But it might be easier to get that if you stake out your ground further toward the side of govt as supplierr rather than just regulator.

  •  The lady goes to the police station (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DFWmom, SoCaliana

    buys rounds for her guns , takes them home , son grabs them and then shoots up a school ?

    Angry person goes to the police station and buys rounds ,
    takes them home , kills wife and himself ?  

    Person goes to police station buys rounds , takes them home , a year latter falls into clinical depression / alcoholism , gets out gun and rounds , kills self ?

    Controlling ammo isn't what is being done in
    Australia , Israel , Japan .  

    "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

    by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:54:30 AM PST

    •  If the Local Cops Had Gotten Know Mom and Son (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SoCaliana

      This situation might not have happened.

      Clearly we need to make certain weapons illegal and institute a buyback program, as stated.   But with 300,000,000 guns in this country, controlling the ammo is the best choke point.

      All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

      by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:13:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If the cops got to know the lady (0+ / 0-)

        what would have changed ?
        What would have / could have they done under the laws we have now ?
        She was in no violation of any current law as far as I have read .

        But with 300,000,000 guns in this country, controlling the ammo is the best choke point.
        That might be your opinion , but I doubt it will have any real effect on the number of killed and wounded each day .
        How many rounds are there already in this country ?
        If there is one round for each gun ?
        If there is ten rounds for each gun ?
        Etc etc etc .

        "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

        by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:20:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Son-The Police Might Have Picked Up Something (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          OleHippieChick

          The Aurora shooter got 6000 rounds mailed to him.  That should not be possible.   These mass killings often involve a big purchase of ammo just prior to the deed.   Why make it easy for mass killers to stock up?

          Yes, there are a lot of bullets in circulation, but as much as people love to shoot, that would be depleted soon enough.  Ammo also has a shelf life, though a long one.

          All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

          by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:25:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The son didn't own the guns . (0+ / 0-)

            What would have happened when she went to buy ammo from the cops ? How would the cops get to know the non criminal son ? She would tell the cops she fears that her son might be insane ? Her concerns about her sons future criminal behavior was such that she allowed her guns and ammo to be used against her ?

            These mass killings often involve a big purchase of ammo just prior to the deed.
            Can you point me to your source of this info ?

            "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

            by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:38:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Ammo Purchases Shortly Before Mass Killings (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SoCaliana

              "Ammo bought at Kmart played a deadly role in the shootings at Columbine two years ago; the night before the massacre, eighteen-year-old killer Eric Harris cajoled a friend, 22-year-old Mark Manes, into buying two boxes of 9-millimeter cartridges for him at a local Kmart. "

              Then there's Holmes, the Aurora shooter getting 6000 rounds mailed to him just prior.

              Then if you wade through this  http://www.nycrimecommission.org/... and look at each incident, you'll find my statement valid.

              IF the boy -- if anybody -- is out at all these shooting ranges firing guns, they need to be licensed.   Have them get the equivalent of a learner's permit if need be.  

              I believe the cops could have pegged the mother for what she was -- a survivalist nut with a gun fetish.   Critically, rather than having mental health services intervene in helping her son, she 'home schooled' him.    That would have been part of a background check.

              All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

              by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:17:26 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  "a big purchase of ammo just prior to the deed" (0+ / 0-)
                two boxes of 9-millimeter cartridges
                Two boxes ?
                Don't ask me to find the info for you .

                "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

                by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:23:23 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Fair Enough, 100 Rounds in Not A Lot (0+ / 0-)

                  But let's see if they would have had the balls to buy that at a police department.  

                  And no, I wont spend the rest of my afternoon going through mass murders case after case.   Suffice it to say,  law enforcement would love to know who just made large purchases.   It's a red flag.  

                  All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

                  by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:36:18 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You would have me do what you are unwilling (0+ / 0-)

                    to do ?

                    But let's see if they would have had the balls to buy that at a police department.
                    They did something far more extreme than just buying ammo at the police station . And then the straw purchase of ammo ...

                    "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

                    by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:48:56 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

              •  Is this the law ? (0+ / 0-)
                IF the boy -- if anybody -- is out at all these shooting ranges firing guns, they need to be licensed.   Have them get the equivalent of a learner's permit if need be.
                If its not the law , it would not have helped .

                "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

                by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:25:10 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Then Change the Law (0+ / 0-)

                  All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

                  by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:27:21 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  So its not the law ? (0+ / 0-)

                    Lets say the lady takes her son to get a learners permit .
                    He and she present their best happy faces to the cops , he has no criminal record , does he get the permit ?
                    Does she get the ammo ?

                    I know you are trying , and I applaud your good intent and caring .  
                    Look to what has been done elsewhere in the world re gun control ...

                    "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

                    by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:36:54 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

          •  If you are going to choke via ammo (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            annecros

            and there is a vast amount of ammo ...

            Ammo also has a shelf life, though a long one.
            I've seen ww-2 ammo offered for sale , not as a collectors item .

            "Drop the name-calling." Meteor Blades 2/4/11

            by indycam on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:43:19 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  too many people (0+ / 0-)

        Too many people, cops included or in particula, know a person who is clearly mentally ill, and know, also, there is nothing they can do about it.

        When our nation gets serious, and decide that there IS something we can do about it, when our twenty year old child or student is clearly mentally ill and going down for the third time, and refusing help, then, maybe, we will see less of this.  

        We're going to have to suck it up and deal with it, and until we do, there's plenty more where this came from.

        •  Well That's the Other Part of the Problem (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DFWmom, SoCaliana

          We have no mental health system to speak of.

          Perhaps the profits from ammo sales could go to mental health services for people who are depressed.   Gun suicides are at 17K per year in this country.

          All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

          by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:44:27 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  A very novel idea. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ColoTim, annecros, Prof Haley

    Unfortunately, I don't expect it to fly, but I like it.

  •  by all means, recommended (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SoCaliana, Prof Haley

    thanks

  •  Maybe not at police stations (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wu ming, ColoTim, SoCaliana

    But one of the reasons gun homicides are so comparatively low in the UK is that you have to show a legal permit to buy ammunition anywhere.

    Apparently gangs have to resort to making their own ammo as it's so difficult to get hold of illegally.  

    I don't see such a law couldn't be introduced almost immediately in the US.  Heck I have to show ID if I want to buy alcohol...

    •  Definitely at Police Stations (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wu ming, ColoTim, SoCaliana, Prof Haley

      The local cops are exactly the people who need to know who in the community has guns, and who might be a danger to others.    They should be doing the background checks. They are the ones who should be front and center on any assault weapon buyback program.  

      All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

      by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:20:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  unfortunately, bullet sales would go underground (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annecros, SoCaliana

    and we would have a massive black market to buy ammo.  i like where you are going with this, but you need something more comprehensive.

  •  Coding bullets (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annecros

    Coding bullets might be problematic. The lead is deformed when they hit the target.

    You could imbed a harder piece of metal with a serial number in each bullet manufactured, maybe, but that would make bullets much more expensive, something that legitimate gun users would rightfully protest, and would require that, with each sale, a database would have to be kept of which serial numbers went to whom, which raises privacy issues.

    After the patriot act, we've already given away many freedoms, yet bad things keep on happening.

    Demolition Man was a funny movie, but it made some valid points.

    •  Marking Each Bullet (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ColoTim

      Is neither difficult or expensive.   In any case I have little sympathy with the argument that ammo would therefore be more expensive, as though its a right to not only have guns and ammo, but have them cheaply.  

      And since it would be the police and not an arms manufacturer selling the bullets, I don't see the price going up much in any case, if at all.

      And while The Patriot Act has eroded our liberties, we each have the right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, which to me means we should not be living in fear of what an unhinged neighbor might do with his unregulated arsenal.

      All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

      by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:41:40 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Your missing the point (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DFWmom

        sometimes bullets aren't even found. Sometimes bullets are found in bits.

        In the scheme you are talking, the police are just the distributors. Yes, a manufacturer will manufacture them. Anything that increases the cost of goods sold, increases the cost.

        Besides, people make their own bullets. All the time, every day. It isn't hard.

    •  Rightfully protest? (0+ / 0-)
      but that would make bullets much more expensive, something that legitimate gun users would rightfully protest
       I don't think so.  If you want to buy a car, you pay for the safety engineering, even if you insist you are a good driver.
  •  $1000 per clip or even per bullet. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    organize, ColoTim, SoCaliana

    Make them save up.

    I ♥ President Obama. ~ Yes, we did. Again.
    NOW: Hands off SocSec, Medicare and Medicaid. NO Grand Bargain.
    Rich pay a bit more. DoD take a bit less. End war on Afghanistan sooner.

    by OleHippieChick on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:30:34 AM PST

  •  Not necessarily the police station, though I can (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SoCaliana

    see the logic behind having people go there when they need the ammo so the police get to know them.  I can see a start being a huge tax for ammo sales, with the funds going towards victims funds (imagine the outrage for Zimmerman having to pay the Martins for the indignity of killing their son!), for gun education and safety classes and for (as a suggestion) actual militia training where people aren't signing up for a years-long stint in the national guard with the possibility of being shipped overseas, but just for a place where the local government can do longer-term training with those who want it.

  •  Excellent Idea (0+ / 0-)

    I bought far too many bullets for Y2K, but still have an excess. Then, again, I auctioned off those firearms.

  •  What I'd like about this idea is that (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    organize

    police surveillance would have a record of a purchaser's face and possibly fingerprints. A buyer's demeanor could be observed, their age could be estimated. And by the amount of ammo being used out there, it would provide lots of business.

    That's why we have to keep having discussions about gun control, to bring up possible solutions. Just about every town and city has a police department. I'm sure the current ammo dealers will balk though. But I think this is headed toward the right direction.

    You could also pick up your license and registration renewal, and show your proof of insurance while you're at it. It's definitely worth talking out.

    •  Thank You - Its All How the Rules Are Constructed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SoCaliana

      As for the concerns of the ammo dealers, well I really don't care about their interests frankly.  

      All of Us are Smarter Than Any of Us

      by organize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:21:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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