In 1996, after an assailant massacred 35 people at a resort area in Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australians responded to the horror by banning the possession of automatic rifles and shotguns. Gunowners proceeded to turn in 650,000 guns to the government (which reimbursed them for the cost). Since that year, gun deaths in Australia have been cut in half.
The massacre that took place at Virginia Tech last month can be only partially explained. We can criticize privacy regulations that allowed Cho Seung-Hui to move freely about in spite of his desperate mental condition. We can point to federal and state gun control laws that allowed him to secure his weaponry.
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