Guns don't kill people. Bullets kill people. And when they don't kill, they result in huge medical bills, paid by the "recipient," the insurance companies or the taxpayer. Nobody knows the economic cost of bullet wounds both accidental and intentional, but it has to be enormous. The recent survivor of the Clackamas Town Center shooting spent a week in intensive care and will be recovering for months.
When bullets do kill, there is the cost of the medical examiner, the funeral expenses and so on, as well as the loss of the potential earnings due to the victim's shortened life.
So for all those concerned about the dramatic rise in the nation's cost of health care, the expenses associated with bullets must be addressed. Here is a modest proposal. Tax bullets. Tax the hell out of them — enough to cover the cost associated with the harm produced by bullets.
There are those who will say that many people load their own cartridges and they would escape paying the bullet tax. People roll their own cigarettes and don't pay cigarette taxes. So what. We can't solve all problems but we can solve some.
Philip B. Scott