Letters to the Editor

Charles Putterman: Can’t prove negatives

Regarding Greg Wallace’s Dec. 13 Point of View “Headed toward confiscation”: While the views he expressed may be his own, he is a professor of law who teaches a course on firearms law, so one would hope that he would be a bit more thoughtful.

First, he stated that Australia’s gun-control laws “had no effect on firearm homicides.” The statistics indicate that this is untrue, that in the years following the impositions of bans and buy-backs, Australia’s rate of gun homicides plummeted.

More concerning is the basic premise of Wallace’s piece: that because gun-control measures cannot stop all mass murders, we should give up the notion of gun control altogether. Yes, let’s do that.

And while we’re at it, let’s get rid of the laws prohibiting human sex trafficking because, despite the law, it still goes on. Oh, and let’s get rid of all the other laws. Just because there’s a law doesn’t mean some lunatic isn’t going to violate it. Why even bother trying?

We don’t know how many murders were prevented by tighter gun-control laws – proving the negative is rather difficult – so I guess the conclusion his law students should draw is that laws that might help reduce lawlessness are a waste of time.

Charles Putterman

Raleigh

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