Opinion

OPINION: Firearm Insurance – A New Approach Curbing Gun Violence and School Shootings

After the 18th school shooting this year occurred this past Valentine’s Day at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Americans are making their voices heard—now more than any other time in American history—by demanding that lawmakers take action make sure that massacres like school shootings never happen again.

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United States President Donald Trump participates in a ‘listening session’ with survivors of the Valentine’s Day school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Image courtesy of Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images.

There are many ideas for curbing gun violence, ranging from banning certain types of firearms to charging outrageous amounts of money for ammunition, all of which are very ineffective when executed.

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Students hold protest in front of the United States Capitol following Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Image Courtesy of the Associated Press.

There is one concept that has never been tried before: mandatory firearm insurance. Legislation requiring that all guns be insured would be an extremely effective method for curbing the number of semi-automatic weapons available, as well as easy to implement—as all guns have VIN numbers and are easy to track. The insurance payments would be calculated using firearm risk assessment statistics published by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The greater risk the weapon has to others, the higher the payments would be. Insurance payments could be lowered if owners took steps to secure their gun, such as storing it in a secure location, storing ammunition in a different location than the firearm, or taking firearm safety courses. A firearm insurance mandate would lower the number of semi-automatic weapons sold, as well as encourage Americans to safely store their firearms safely and take gun safety classes to learn how to operate their firearm safely and accurately. Most importantly, a firearm insurance mandate would not infringe on the American people’s constitutional right to own a firearm. This new approach would be very effective, as well as easily accepted by lawmakers of both parties.

Cover photo courtesy of Getty Images.

 

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