Thanks in advance for taking about one minute to answer the following survey questions:
- Do you own a vehicle?
- Do you personally enjoy using a vehicle?
- Aside from non-essential use, could you live without using a vehicle in exchange for $8,580 annually for the rest of your life?
- Are you upset when you read news stories about people who have used a vehicle to murder other people?
- If you could prevent even one person from being murdered by someone using a vehicle, would you?
Now, keep your answers the same, but substitute the word “vehicle” with “semiautomatic weapon” and read the survey again. (Once you’re back to this point, continue reading below).
If you own other types of guns, keep them.
But, if you’re a supporter of the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution and, on your first time through the survey, answered “Yes” to question three above, please surrender. Please surrender your semiautomatic weapons and/or your resistance to banning them.
It shouldn’t even take $8,580 every year to persuade you to do this, although that’s what I’m proposing.
The estimated overall economic impact of the firearms and ammo industry in the U.S. is $42.9 billion. The U.S. federal budget (2015) was $3.8 trillion. From the $1.05 trillion of that budget which is allocated to healthcare, I’m proposing the U.S. government take $42.9 billion to pay off gun owners and gun rights activists to not oppose a ban on semiautomatic weapons, (and related “bump stock” accessories that make some weapons close to automatic).
If the opposition to banning these weapons is based on money made from them, let’s arrange to pay out what it would be worth. The lifetime, annual payout only applies to the estimated 5 million Americans who currently own a semiautomatic weapon, like the AR-15. That works out to be about $8,580 each.
If the opposition is about rights, I’m not even talking about a full-scale buyback program, like what Australia did in 1996. KEEP ALL OF YOUR OTHER GUNS! (Even though the vast majority of gun-related deaths in the U.S. are the result of non-semiautomatic weapons).
FYI: after a mass shooting in 1996, the Aussie government bought back over 640,000 newly illegal weapons at market value, which cost approximately USD $400 million and was funded by a temporary 1% income tax levy.
FYI: since 1996, only 10 people have died in mass shootings in Australia.
I don’t care if you feel it’s unfair that millions of people should suffer and be expected to compromise their right to bear arms because of the actions of just the few who use these weapons to kill people. I don’t care if you think my logic is unsound. I’m just asking for a compromise on one type of weapon and I’m willing to vote for a plan to pay you off for it.
You and I may never agree on whether people should have the right to own a gun of any kind. So, if $8,580 annually isn’t enough to get you to agree to a ban on just the semiautomatic types, name your price.