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French Gun Control Failed, Leaving Law-Abiding Citizens Helpless As Nation Burned

Published: July 7, 2023 | Print Friendly and PDF
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Submitted by Aidan Johnston, federal affairs director for Gun Owners of America,

In case you missed it, France entered into a pseudo-civil war this past weekend. Rioters took to the streets, destroyed billions of dollars in local property, violent criminals pulled out their illegal guns, and there was nothing the average disarmed Frenchman could do about it.

These recent riots proved the old adage, "When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns."

France has much stricter gun laws than anywhere in the United States. French citizens do not have the individual right to bear arms, nor carry a firearm in public for self-defense. Instead, they have strict regulations for anyone that does want to keep a firearm at home:

  • limits on the type and amount of guns and ammo you can own;
  • universal background checks; and
  • gun registration.

Nevertheless, what began in France as mostly peaceful protests would end with fully automatic weapons and banned "weapons of war" being used to terrorize the streets of France.

Protesters started by burning cars, starting fires, and shooting off fireworks, but soon began using shotguns to shoot out police cameras.

Criminals soon brought out the bigger guns—semiautomatic AK-style firearms. Video footage revealed the criminals shooting directly into the air in the city center—endangering the surrounding area.

Shortly after that, footage surfaced online of protestors with handguns and belt-fed machine guns marching down the street in broad daylight. Terrorized citizens ran and screamed as security alarms blared.

Meanwhile, average French citizens attempted to stand up to the rioters with wooden bats and other improvised weaponry.

France's gun control did nothing to protect its people.

Criminals dominated the streets. In this short period of civil unrest, thousands were arrested, and more than a billion dollars of damage was done to local businesses—which doesn't even include schools, town halls, or community centers.

These rioters didn't care for France's gun laws. They had illegal firearms—such as banned, fully-automatic belt-fed machine guns.

They took those illegal firearms and shot them in public to wreak havoc—without regard for France's ban on the public carry of firearms or the safety of the general public.

While armed criminals ignored French gun laws and destroyed cities, Florida's permitless concealed carry law went into effect.

Anti-gun advocates decried Florida for becoming a "more dangerous state." Yet, Florida celebrated the weekend in peace while gun-controlled France burned.

The Founding Fathers fostered our well-armed society "for the security of [our] free state." In other words, the individual Second Amendment right is protected for the common good and helps us keep ourselves, our loved ones, and our nation safe.

For example, during the race riots in Los Angeles, local Korean business owners stood up to criminals by arming their employees and guarding their neighborhoods from the rooftops.

Again, during riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin, locals like Kyle Rittenhouse used firearms to patrol local communities, put out fires, offer first aid, and defend themselves from violent criminals.

In the United States, our Second Amendment empowers citizens with the means to stand up to tyranny—whether by an oppressive government, a violent criminal, or a roving gang of bandits during civil unrest.

France's example has proven that gun control only affects law-abiding citizens.

Criminals won't give up their guns no matter what gun restrictions the government enacts, and the Second Amendment says that the People shouldn't have to give up their guns either.

We refuse to sit idly by while bureaucrats or legislators enact "feel good" measures that disarm you and leave you searching for improvised weapons during the next wave of riots.

* * *

Gun Owners of America will never stop fighting for your rights.

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