Recently, a Vermont woman was released from a psychiatric facility following a voluntary commitment. The next day she purchased a handgun and the day after that, she killed herself. Naturally, some gun control groups are trying to capitalize on the incident:

Although Vermont lawmakers say they’re willing to talk about waiting periods, the issue doesn’t appear to be a high priority. More attention, they said, appears to be going toward background checks.

Most acts of violence, especially suicide, are associated with impulsiveness, said Lindsey Zwicker, a staff attorney for the [Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence]. A waiting period is meant to curb those acts.

However, Zwicker said, she is not aware of any hard evidence that waiting periods actually reduce violence or suicides.

“With a mandated waiting period, it would at least provide a cooling-off period, provide an opportunity for someone to seek help, allow them to reconsider, but we can’t say for sure what effect it would have,” Zwicker said.

So, there’s no hard evidence, but let’s pass a law anyway. In the meantime, someone who might fear for their life — from an abusive ex-spouse for instance — would not be able to obtain the ready means to protect themselves during that same waiting period.