An even worse misconception related to guns and the military that I’ve been reading frequently recently relates to the Fort Hood shooting and military bases.
Civilians, especially liberal ones who’ve never served in the military and have never known or met anyone who has ever served in the military, appear to believe that domestic military bases are like armed camps where everyone walks around with loaded weapons all the time.
I’ve seen this in the context of the Fort Hood shooting a great deal recently.
On all military bases, weapons are very strictly controlled. No one (except the military police) walks around with loaded guns of any type. Ever.
If you do have a loaded weapon, it is on the range only and only while you are firing it*.
You are far, far (far!) less likely to find a soldier walking around a military base with a loaded weapon than if you were to say, stop a hundred random people on the sidewalk.
So when I see things like, “If Nidal Hasan couldn’t be stopped by thousands of armed soldiers on a military base, then there’s nothing we can do!” I just shake my head at the sheer ignorance that would lead to such a statement – especially when gun control advocates (whom I support) could be using the reality of military bases, where weapons are strictly controlled, as an example gun control working.
Statistics are hard to find, but I’d wager that the rate of shooting on military bases is far lower than in the civilian world due to the facts that I mention above.
*The only real exception is that hunting is allowed on many military bases.