In another demonstration of stupidity, the City of Baltimore looks to ban of replica guns, aka toy guns.
On Monday, the Baltimore City Council gave preliminary approval to a ban on toy guns that look like real ones.
Why did they do such a thing? A 14-year-old boy was shot by a city police detective in April.
The Baltimore Sun reports:
City Council President Bernard C. “Jack” Young said replica guns are contributing to violence on Baltimore’s streets. He said people are using the fake weapons in robberies, and children who carry them are put in harm’s way.
There have been more than 800 shootings this year in Baltimore, which is on pace to pass 300 homicides for a second consecutive year.
“It’s something that we should do for the safety of our children,” Young said. “We’re getting stores robbed with replicas. We’ve got people running around with these things and they almost look real. … I don’t think we should be allowing replica guns in the city of Baltimore, especially with the murder rate we have.”
A police detective in East Baltimore shot and wounded 14-year-old Dedric Colvin in the shoulder and leg in April.
Police said the boy was carrying a spring-air-powered BB gun that resembled a semiautomatic pistol. He survived the shooting.
Owning, carrying or otherwise possessing a replica gun, which could “reasonably be perceived to be a real firearm” could result in a $250 fine for the first offense and up to $1,000 for the second and subsequent offenses. That is, if a police officer doesn’t kill you first.
According to the text of the ordinance on the City Council’s website, a “replica gun” is defined as follows:
“replica gun” means any toy, imitation, facsimile or replica pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, air rifle, B-B gun, pellet gun, machine gun, or other simulated weapon, which because of its color, size, shape, or other characteristics, can reasonably be perceived to be a real firearm.
But this is not an issue about safety. It isn’t. Here is what it is really about out of the mouth of a Democrat gun grabber.
“If we had our way, we would ban all handguns in the city of Baltimore. We just don’t have the authority to do it,” said Baltimore City Councilman Jim Kraft, D-District 1, who sponsored the bill, told WBAL in October. “We’re hoping that the only time a person would have a gun is if it were to be a real gun.”
It’s about conditioning people to accept infringement upon their rights and complete trust in those in government being the only ones to have guns, which can be used upon the citizenry.
At least one Baltimore resident took a stand.
Shaivaughn Crawley said, “I just don’t think that this is practical. I don’t think it can work until we have police officers that are willing to not just immediately shoot.”
She’s right. It’s not practical at all. While I realize that a life and death issue may present itself in which a policeman may have to make a quick decision, the reality is that we have seen actions that are far too quick in response when it was not necessary. Tamir Rice comes to mind. And lest you think I’m out of bounds on this, many of you reading this can recall a time when we used to shoot bb guns as kids, many of them looked pretty real if only a quick glance was given. I don’t recall kids getting shot by police over that.
Still, Kraft defended the police force as he attacked the rights of the citizens.
“It is true that some of our officers need more training, but the vast majority of the men and women in the Baltimore City Police Department are responsible officers, and they’re not out there looking to shoot somebody,” he said.
Well the vast majority of people with bb guns in your city aren’t out to rob stores or shoot people either Mr. Kraft. So, what is your point? This is just a stepping stone to the perception of guns in the public eye.
Mark Pennak, president of Maryland Shall Issue Inc., said the bill, should it be passed, would “create a whole new class of criminals in the City of Baltimore for the mere home possession by entire families of otherwise perfectly legal toys!”
Pennak also says that the ordinance may actually violate federal law because individuals have no way of knowing whether a replica could be “reasonably perceived to be a real firearm” and federal law (at 15 U.S.C. § 5001) has already preempted states from banning “traditional B-B, paintball, or pellet-firing air guns that expel a projectile through the force of air pressure.”
Mr. Pennak also said there were exceptions to the bill, according to The Truth About Guns. “They permit people to possess replicas while ‘being transported in interstate commerce’ or if the replica is used primarily for theatrical productions or historic reenactments; a firearms training class taught by a ‘certified qualified firearm instructor’; shooting competitions; for display purposes; or for use in paintball. Also per the amendments, replica guns must also be ‘stored in a locked case or affixed to a wall at all times when not in use.'”
To make matters worse, in a play similar to that in the movie Runaway Jury, Anthony McCarthy, spokesman for Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Black, said the mayor would like to see the bill changed to hold “manufacturers and those who are responsible for the point of sale accountable, and not families and especially our children.”
The bill is scheduled to be voted on December 5.