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Can we stop mass shootings?



Photo: REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Yes, something can be done about mass shootings. But the answer isn’t seizing the guns of people who mind their own business, writes Shika Dalmia:

“[T]he kind of intrusive searches of the homes and property of gun owners [seizing guns] would entail would make the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance of telecommunications look positively restrained. Nor are Americans likely to simply lie down and take it. They will likely resist and fight back, which would require the government to crack down even more — or, in other words, declare war on its own people.

“No matter how much liberals want a gun-free paradise, they can’t simply wish away a deeply entrenched gun culture.”

A better approach, Dalmia writes, is to “encourage private entities to step up their own lines of defense.”

“It is really quite amazing that Paddock could sneak in so much weaponry — and install security cameras in his room to monitor police activity outside — completely undetected by the Mandalay Bay. As I have written previously, that kind of thing would never happen in my home country of India, where after the 2011 Mumbai attack, every hotel runs every car, every piece of luggage, and every hand bag through a metal detector. Ditto for movie theaters and malls. Neighborhoods have installed their own private guards.

“One reason Indians are taking security into their own hands is that their government is so inept that Indians have no illusions that it will protect them. But even where the government is more functional, it can’t be omnipresent — and protect everyone from every single threat.

“The American Hotel & Lodging Association declared after the Las Vegas shooting that it will re-evaluate the industry’s security protocols. That’s good. Other industries should follow suit.

“The only way killers like Paddock — or Islamist terrorists, for that matter — have a prayer of being thwarted is if we fundamentally rethink our security strategy and build millions of points of resistance.” [The Week]


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