I was recently in Las Vegas, NV with my family, and my father and I were talking. For those of you who don't know, I'm pretty liberal. My father is very conservative, but is always tries to keep an open mind. Both of us are open to having our opinions changed if the facts support it, we just generally have different opinions of what is good for the country at large, how laws should be interpreted, whatever.
So, on a drive down the Strip, the subject of guns came up. Las Vegas has gun clubs that are apparently very big among the Japanese that visit the city. Most Japanese will never hold a gun, much less fire a fully automatic Thompson, Uzi or similar. The gun laws in Japan are some of the most restrictive of all First World countries, and firing a pistol or rifle would be considered no less than 3 felonies, depending on what you were shooting at, at a sentence starting at 10 years.
So, here's what we discussed; things that a conservative could live with, and make a liberal feel like something was being done to help curb gun violence.
1) Every gun needs to be registered, except for collectors or museum pieces, which are handled separately. Every registered gun must be presented once every two years to prove the gun is still owned by the registered owner.
2) No more private party sales, or gun show loop holes. If you sell a gun, it's sold through a registered, licensed dealer that files the appropriate paperwork showing the transfer of the weapon.
3) There is no limit on magazine or clip size, however there is a progressive tax, paid annually, on clips of a larger capacity of 10-12. You can own a 200 round drum, but it will cost you. Call it a bullet guzzler tax.
4) A person may have a total of 30 rounds of ammunition in magazines, clips, speed loaders, or similar devices, either in or out of their weapon any time they are carrying their weapon. They can have more on their person, but it cannot be loaded in a magazine. After 30 shots, you have to stop and put bullets in the feed device and reload the gun. If that's 10 in your gun plus 2 magazines for a Glock, great. If it's 30 rounds in a banana clip for your AK-47, cool. But 30 shots is all you get before you have to put more bullets in a device to load the gun.
5) Gun owners must be of legal age to own them
6) Owners must pass a licensing test, including mental competency once every 4 years.
7) Firearms for the military and law enforcement are regulated separately (duh, but it makes sure some hillbilly can't say “Yer takin' stuff away from our soldiers!”)
8) Any weapon you can't prove you own is confiscated and destroyed.
9) If you follow the rules, you can own any damn thing you want as long as it doesn't qualify as a Class 3 weapon. Open carry or concealed carry permits would be handled separately from the registration of the actual weapon.
The standard argument of “criminals will still carry guns” or “they'll take away are guns!” don't hold water. Yes, people that break the law will still break the law. None of this prevents a lawful citizen from having / owning / carrying a firearm. For the second point, no one will ever take America's guns away. They couldn't do it. There are 300 million people in America, and 280 million plus estimated guns. Your car is registered and they haven't ever taken those away. Your pet is probably registered (or it should be), yet no one has confiscated Spot and Mr. Foofels. This just ensures that as many people as possible are mentally competent to handle fire arms responsibly.