Shaq Wants to Live in a Police State

We have a problem with school shootings and mass shootings in general. For the most part, our leaders in both major political parties have been content to shrug their shoulders and say “well, there’s nothing we can do about it” even though every other Western democracy has solved the problem with effective gun control legislation. So as politicians do nothing and President Trump immediately knuckles under to the NRA after promising to do something, we’ve had to turn to celebrities and Jake Paul for answers on school shootings.

One of those celebrities is Shaquille O’Neal, who has clearly never heard of the school to prison pipeline.

“The government should give law enforcement more money,” he said on WABC Radio’s “Curtis and Cosby” show on Wednesday. “Give more money, you recruit more people, and the guys that are not ready to go on the streets, you put them in front of the schools. You put ’em in front of the schools, you put ’em behind the schools, you put ’em inside the schools, and we need to pass information. … I would like to see police officers in schools, inner cities, private schools.”

Yeah, that’s what we need, cops in schools. We’re already arresting kids for things like smoking weed and fighting. Let’s have a cop right there on the scene to make sure any mistake a high school student makes ends all their future prospects. Despite the fact that strong gun control has been successful in stopping gun violence in every country that’s done it, Shaq doesn’t think it would work.

“There’s a lot of those weapons already on the streets,” O’Neal said. “So it’s not like, if you say, ‘OK, these weapons are banned,’ people are gonna go, ‘Oh man, let me turn it in.’ That’s definitely not going to happen.

That’s exactly what happened in Australia, by the way. It turns out that when given the choice of having the government give you your money back for a gun or keeping it despite it being illegal, most people are more than happy to sell them at a buyback.

“‘Cause once you ban ’em, now they’re going to become a collector’s item and you’re going to have people underground, and they were $2,000. … I’ll give you $9,000 for that gun. So, you know, we just need to keep our eyes open.”

Yes, illegal firearms are much more expensive. This also happened in Australia. Illegal guns can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Criminals actually share guns because it’s too prohibitively expensive to own them. You know who traditionally doesn’t have $15,000 just lying around? Potential school shooters.

I love Shaq, he was a great basketball player and he’s a great guy. He used to personally go out and buy Christmas presents for underprivileged kids. And he bought them by the literal truckload. I think he’s incredible. But even the nicest, best person in the world isn’t right about everything, and Shaq isn’t right about this.

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