Normally, when conservatives hear the word “gun” and “restrain” in the same phrase, they automatically oppose whatever’s coming next. However, in a new USA Today piece, I argue that conservatives and liberals alike should support the Gun Violence Restraining Order.
After every school shooting, the cultural reaction is about as predictable as the sun coming up in the morning. First, liberals get on social media and demand the government just do something about gun violence. Their suggestions usually involve confiscation, curtailing the Second Amendment, and wearing lapel pins in impotent rage. Conservatives, on the other hand, dig in their heels, and make comments about liberty, and how “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” Little common ground has ever been found, until now: A gun control measure first used in my home state of liberal California has recently been championed by a writer at the conservative National Review.
Tea Party members and champions of self-governance should support it, too. Here’s why.
In 2014, California passed a “gun violence restraining order,” or a GVRO statute which went into effect two years later. When someone is showing signs of being troubled or potentially violent, it allows someone they live with or a spouse, parent or sibling to petition the court to temporarily take that person’s gun rights away.
Now calm down.
The loved ones of the troubled person must produce real evidence (for example, social media posts, journals, audio recordings, sworn statements, etc.) which minimizes the possibility of just harassing innocent people. In fact, this process is very similar to restraining orders common in family law. In its first year, California granted 86 restraining orders, most of which were in effect for just their 21 days. In 10 cases, the GVROs were extended for a year.
Please enjoy the rest of this article on USA Today.
Image Credit: M&R Glasgow on Flickr