Welcome to Common Gunsense

I hope this blog will provoke some thoughtful reflection about the issue of guns and gun violence. I am passionate about the issue and would love to change some misperceptions and the culture of gun violence in America by sharing with readers words, photos, videos and clips from articles to promote common sense about gun issues. Many of you will agree with me- some will not. I am only one person but one among many who think it's time to do something about this national problem. The views expressed by me in this blog do not represent any group with which I am associated but are rather my own personal opinions and thoughts.
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Thursday, February 3, 2011

The State of the states

I often check the news back in my home town and home state while traveling. Yesterday this commentary from Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan ran in the Star Tribune. Kudos to Dolan for telling it like it is. As Dolan so aptly points out: " It gets to the point of being ridiculous when you see elected representatives stammering to justifying 30-round handgun magazines for the general public and advocating for guns in schools." I just had the very same experience- some politicians twisting themselves into knots about why they couldn't possibly support a modest attempt to curb the number of shooting victims in our country because they are so afraid of the gun lobby. What a sad state of affairs. If we can't pass measures to keep guns away from criminals, domestic abusers, adjudicated mentally ill folks, drug abusers and others who just can't or won't use guns responsibly, then we are abdicating our responsibilities as a society. Dolan has challenged the NRA to explain why they want to dismantle long standing gun laws in Minnesota. The truth is that the gun lobby just plain has no interest in the gun laws "on the books". For all their bluster about enforcing the laws already on the books, when push comes to shove, what they really want is to dismantle the few laws we already have. Cynically, if we have a lawless society where just anyone can get any gun from anyone, ( which is already in place to some extent) then they will be even more justified in owning and carrying their guns around to protect themselves from the lawless.


The truth is, we haven't really tried gun control. With a few exceptions, we have very few federal gun laws. That is by design of the NRA. Look no further than the gun lobby and it's leaders for reasons why we can't stop the daily shootings in our country.They are a self fulfilling organization. The more guns they convince the public are needed to protect against the supposed bogeymen on the streets, the more people will feel the need to buy their guns and that results in more sales of guns and more permits to carry, more classes for permit holders, more gun ranges, etc. Make no mistake, the NRA is a very clever group. If you want to become a member of a shooting club, you must join the NRA first. If you buy a partially assembled gun, open the box in which your gun comes and you will find right on the top of the box is a message from the NRA. You had better join them because, if not, your guns will be confiscated.


So, in the interest of public unsafety, the NRA's next line of attack is to dismantle the gun laws already on the books in a state near you. In the midst of that, their strategy is to vehemently fight against any efforts to reduce the carnage with reasonable common sense gun legislation. The ban on large capacity ammunition magazines is just such an example. If you are a member of the NRA and don't agree with the tactics of the leaders of the organization, I suggest you contact your state legislators and your Representatives and Senators to ask them to stand up for what is right and responsible. Chief Dolan was doing just that; he represents most law enforcement officers in Minnesota. My own Police Chief and Sheriff are adamantly opposed to the efforts to repeal Minnesota gun laws that make our state safer than Florida or Texas where the number of gun crimes, shootings, gun ownership and gun deaths are higher. 


If you read the comments from the "gun guys" on the linked article above, you will see the immature comments and name calling. The worst of it is the total lack of respect for Chief Dolan and law enforcement in general. The "gun guys" do not like law enforcement. That has become clear to me on this blog. They don't trust them and they are ready with their own guns to fight against authority figures. It is downright scary and should be of concern to the general public. Ridiculing the Police Chief by calling him "Timmy" in a snotty and condescending manner is unacceptable and should be called out.


And while we are speaking of domestic abusers and those who shouldn't have guns, check out this latest report of the 2010 domestic deaths in Minnesota. It was, as the headline says, a deadly year for domestic abuse victims. The report notes this: " WEAPON OF CHOICE: In 2010, nine of 15 intimate-partner homicides were committed with firearms." Yes, and our legislature wants to make it easier for those domestic abusers to get their guns. What kind of perverse logic is this? I submit to you that there are some who simply think a certain number of shootings is just plain O.K. with them if we don't mess with their right to own any gun they want. There is no logic or common sense to this line of thinking. It is a self-centered, self-serving and selfish view of the world.


As someone who lost a sister to a domestic shooting and someone who is involved with the Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs well as a volunteer at my local Family Justice Center for battered women, this is an issue at the top of my list of importance. I am grateful for the amazing people who work in these programs. They save lives almost on a daily basis. But not enough. We can and must do better. I am also grateful that I live in a state where Police Chiefs and Sheriffs do their jobs diligently and oppose attempts to make us less safe. Minneapolis Police Chief Dolan has spoken out and he represents the voices of law enforcement officers all over the state of Minnesota. For that, I thank him and the local law enforcment officers who support what I am doing. 


I am not the only one pursuing the idea that the gun lobby's logic needs to be challenged. There is clearly a slippery slope going in the direction of fewer gun laws and more guns. The slope is also heading in the direction of ever more shootings and the possibility of more of the type of mass shootings that we had in Tucson. People who should not have guns are getting them. "Law abiding" gun owners (on this blog)are saying they are members of a militia, by default and that every American male is a member of the militia. This gives them an excuse for playing with their guns and getting ready for an insurrection when they have decided that they will need to overthrow their duly elected democratic government. Here is an article from Christian Century magazine, imploring the country to do something. The number of people who have had enough is growing. They have had enough of the violence, of the gun lobby's powerful influence, of our elected leaders abdicating responsibility, of the failure of us all to do the right thing to stop the carnage. From the article above:" The notion that the good guys will gun down the bad guys is a dangerous fantasy. When everyone carries a firearm, we can be sure that a lot more innocent people are going to be victims."


And finally, I draw your attention to this point of view about the perversity of moving backwards instead of forwards concerning reasonable gun control measures after the Tucson shootings. Richard Griffin has it right when he says: "Seeing gun control as a conservative-liberal issue misses the point. To protect your neighbors and yourself against murderous violence cannot be shrugged off this easily. Instead, putting in place commonsense protection should rank high among the priorities of all Americans." I say, " Something is rotten in the state of Denmark."

134 comments:

  1. "It gets to the point of being ridiculous when you see elected representatives stammering to justifying 30-round handgun magazines"

    So, when will Mr. Dolan's department be getting rid of all of it's magazines capable of holding more than ten rounds?

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  2. Most law enforcement offices carry 10 round magazines.

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  3. Dolan is right!

    "No one can say exactly what is bringing overall reductions in violent crime, but we all concur that there have been many contributing efforts."

    If violent crime had INCREASED instead, the same thing would apply. So gun control advocates would NOT try to blame more guns.

    The wouldn't! Really! No, not them! No, I tell you! Why don't you believe me?

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  4. As usual (and unlike other gunowner advocates) I am willing to compromise on the magazine issue.

    I will agree to banning 30rd magazines if most prominent gun control advocates agree to NOT ban guns with 10rd magazines.

    japete, what say you? Meet me in compromise?

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  5. You're still yammering about how nobody needs a 30-round clip?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Wf1C4iBikI

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  6. Jay= I can't negotiate deals on this blog but I can tell you neither I or anybody with whom I have spoken or communicated with has said anything about banning magazines with 10 rounds. Those are the standard magazines and have been for many years. I'm glad to hear you are willing to compromise. I can tell you that my position would actually not be a compromise because I am not interested in banning 10 round magazines. That is not on the table.

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  7. Thanks jdege, for the entertainment but I really hate fantasy movies like that.

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  8. A survey of 450 police chiefs in cities over 250,000 around the country found that the majority supported gun control regulations, such as tightening background checks, even at the expense of making it a little harder for law abiding citizens to get guns (62% of respondents), in the name of public safety.

    Citation: Thompson, A., JH Price, JA Dake, and T. Tatchell, “Police Chiefs’ Perceptions of the Regulation of Firearms,” American Journal of Preventive Medicine 30(4) (April 2006):305-312

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  9. japete, I know that you can't make deals, but I am just looking for signs that gun control advocates are open to compromise.

    I was not talking about banning 10 round magazines. My post read: "guns with 10rd magazines." In other words: If a gun comes with only 10rd magazines, and magazines greater than 10rds are banned, will gun control advocates try to ban that gun?

    japete, MOST gun control advocates have named MANY guns with 10rd magazines that they want to ban. I might agree to banning magazines greater than 10rds, but not if gun control advocates keep trying to ban guns that have 10rd magazines (with no end in sight).

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  10. As I said, I have heard nothing about banning any guns. The bill is specific to magazines over 10 rounds.

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  11. Baldr,

    If we surveyed several hundred/thousand/million people and it was okay with them if we made it harder for you to blog, to speak in public, to write, to express your opinion in any way -- what difference would it make?

    Would you agree to the limitations that the people approved?

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  12. This is stupid, Baldr. Feel free to ignore it. I publish it only so my readers can see the stupid things some people say here.

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  13. "that results in more sales of guns and more permits to carry, more classes for permit holders, more gun ranges, etc."

    More gun sales means more guns need to be made, which means more jobs. More permits to carry means more classes, which means yet again more jobs. More gun ranges means more jobs. In a country that's in the midst of a recession, these are all good things.

    The shooting sports industry employs millions of people here in America. Everything from manual labor to intellectual. It's one of the few industries that hasn't been outsourced to China or Mexico.

    "If you want to become a member of a shooting club, you must join the NRA first. If you buy a partially assembled gun, open the box in which your gun comes and you will find right on the top of the box is a message from the NRA. You had better join them because, if not, your guns will be confiscated."

    That's a good thing as well. Because if it weren't for the NRA, there would be fewer gun stores, fewer gun safety classes, fewer self-defense courses, fewer gun ranges, fewer places to hunt, etc. As far as I am concerned, any gun owner who isn't an NRA member is dead weight because they aren't doing their part to help preserve the shooting sports and the 2nd Amendment.

    "The "gun guys" do not like law enforcement."

    Patently false. There are several law enforcement officers and ex-officers who are well respected among the "gun guys". What the "gun guys" do not like are law enforcement officers who use their position of power to aid in the erosion of the 2nd Amendment.

    ""Law abiding" gun owners (on this blog)are saying they are members of a militia, by default and that every American male is a member of the militia."

    That is the law. If there is a problem with it, it should be taken up with congress.

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  14. Regarding law enforcement... I think both sides of this argument would make considerable progress if we can learn to separate "police chiefs" from the nebulous term "law enforcement".

    Many police chiefs are appointed by elected mayors. The political agenda of such a mayor could potentially influence such a police chief.

    This makes police chiefs are effectively politicians.

    Talk to police officers who are working the streets, actually dealing hands-on with criminals and victims. The vast majority of police officer I've had the pleasure of speaking to, support civilian gun ownership and self defense training.

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  15. I don't have time for any law enforcement official who calls part of the Bill of Rights and "impediment." There's no room for that in a free society. Is the Fourth Amendment an impediment? It certainly fosters violence by restraining police from conducting random searches for contraband and illegal weapons. Yes. It is an impediment. That's the whole idea.

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  16. japete, I guess that I pay more attention to gun control proposals than you do.

    Even when they only have 10rd magazines, many gun control advocates want to ban:

    Cheap handguns ("Saturday Night Specials")

    Small (very concealable) handguns

    Very big handguns

    .50 cal handguns

    .50 cal rifles

    10rd shotguns

    assault rifles

    popular 10rd hunting rifles that someone calls "assault rifles"

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  17. Most law enforcement offices carry 10 round magazines.

    This is completely untrue. Standard issue firearm for the NYPD is the Glock 17, which holds 17 rounds, and the 19, which holds 15. The 17 and 19 are probably the two most common models sold to law enforcement.

    PA State Police used to issue the Beretta 92, which holds 18. Now they issue the Glock 37. They Maryland State Police use the 96, which is a larger caliber and holds 12. Minnesota State Police also use the 96.

    FBI uses the Glock 22 as its standard side arm. Capacity is 15 to 17 rounds. Other users of the Glock 22? Baltimore PD, Phoenix PD, Alaska State Police.

    I can't think of any police agency that issues a pistol with a 10 round magazine. Can't seem to find one either.

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  18. At the present time there are 271 Federal Gun Control Laws. If you count all of the States Gun Laws you come close to 20,000 laws as of right now. Not one of these laws will stop a criminal from getting a handgun or long gun. They are called criminals for a reason they IGNORE laws. I will even agree to the ban of 30 round magazines in favor of 10 rounds. This will not stop someone determined to do a mass murder. It takes less than 3 seconds to eject & reinsert a new magazine (person unfamiliar with the gun) I can do it in 1.5 seconds & if I carried a dozen magazines (easy to do) that is 130 rounds & easier to do than carrying 4 -30 round mags. The only thing that will stop a mad-man with a gun is a LEO or a citizen carrying legally & being qualified to use it effectively. It happens every day & the FBI has acknowledged it as well. I will suggest CCW Permit holders should have to qualify yearly just like LEO's. That would make a difference.

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  19. " I will suggest CCW Permit holders should have to qualify yearly just like LEO's. That would make a difference. " I like that idea. It's a good one but doesn't necessarily happen and particularly if one doesn't even have to have a permit to carry as in Arizona.

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  20. Dear readers,

    I erred in saying that L.E. doesn't carry more than 10 rounds. You all have pointed that out. It is apparent that L.E. does not carry 30 round magazines for the most part. The magazines are anywhere from 12-17 or so as I understand it. I would venture to say that L.E. are more likely to need more rounds than the ordinary gun owner since they are on the streets putting their lives at risk every day and have been outgunned. Thanks for putting me straight about that.

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  21. So do you just make this stuff as you go? I have also looked into the membership at several members only ranges and none of them seem to require a NRA membership.

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  22. I have not made things up as I go. I report what people who have these experiences tell me. So at the the gun range in my area one must be an NRA memberr to belong I assume that is not unusual.

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  23. It's not 'unusual' but it's not universal either. Mostly it has to do w/ insurance and liability issues.

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  24. Many gun clubs are NRA-affiliated. Many are not. To become a member of an NRA-affiliated club, you need to be a member of the NRA. For non-affiliated clubs, there is no such requirement.

    I'd take the usual libertarian stance that if you don't want to be a member of the NRA, you should pick a non-affiliated club - except that the anti-gun crowd has managed to close down so many shooting ranges that most folks don't have much choice, when it comes to finding a place to shoot.

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  25. It isn't unusual. They are called 100% clubs. Mine is one. But I would not say the majority are 100% clubs. I don't have data on it. Antecdotally, 1 in 5 maybe, around here.

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  26. Aren't law enforcement exempt from the restrictions of the McCarthy bill? (and rightly so)

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  27. At private ranges and clubs, it's not uncommon to require either membership in the NRA or another organization.

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  28.       In your admission that police need large capacity magazines you have bolstered our argument twice.  
         If Tim Dolan believes what he wrote, his officers will be safer on the streets without guns.   He said an individual in an armed confrontation is four times safer without a gun.   You said police officers face felons more often and need large capacity magazines.   Ergo, you have disproven Tim Dolan.     
         If police who face a felon need a large capacity magazine, when they have a partner, a radio call for backup, a vest, and all sorts of other advantages, then the solitary guy getting mugged on the street,  or Grandmother at home when the door is broken in, or the single mom getting carjacked has as least as great a need as ANY police   
         You decry gun owners who wish to dismantle gun laws which had no effect on anyone except abiding Citizens.  There are scores of laws regarding guns, which have been outdated by technology, by new legislation, or have been proven to benpoorly written and hastily passed.  Repealing these does not harm law enforcement nor enable criminals.  
         Think of the current set of statutes as a maze.  What had once been a nice clear set of ten laws beginning with "thou shalt" man has buggered up into some three hundred and seventy five thousand pages of MN State statue, code, and administrative law.  Not only that, but every session the Lege passes another few thousand pages of law, statutes and codes which indirectly or directly interact with every statute, law, and code passed before.  At some point, a thorough house cleaning is needed and duplications, conflicts, and obsolete laws need to be culled from the books.  
         You keep trying to align gun rights folk as soft on gun crime because they wish to simplify and clean up laws that don't work.   Gunfolk are notoriously presented elsewhere as "throw away the key" fanatics by Democrats at elections.  What group of people has consistently decried soft on crime judges?  Where did such things as mandated sentencing come from? Where did three strikes come from?    It certainly wasn't the Brady center.   
         Permit holders have been studied quite a bit, and one thing consistently shows up.  They are consistently among the most law abiding segment of society.  Better than cops.  Better than doctors.  Yes, there are permit holders who make mistakes and those are widely trumpeted.  Whenever a body of some several millions exists, there are going to be a few who make mistakes.  If it were not so rare it would not be so news worthy when it does happen.  
         Calling gunfolk soft on crime is less than genuine.  You see, we wish to punish the people who do the crime.  We believe for the most part that those initial ten laws have held up fairly well over time.  We also believe that simply writing laws does nothing without enforcement.   
         You make a statement most telling when you say we have never really had gun control here.   And you're right.   Because this is America.  We have freedoms guaranteed to us as unalienable.   The laws you seek cross that line.  
         If you wish to stop violent crime, forget about the tool of the criminal, concentrate on the cause, concentrate on the perpetrator.  
         I can quote study after study, example after example, anecdote after anecdote, which show that your reasoning is erroneous.   I can show evidentiary holes in all of your arguments because they are based on myth.  But none of that matters.   
         What matters is that any effort to stem violent crime crime can only be successful if it focuses on the criminal.  
         You repeatedly decry us gunfolk as being against "reasonable" laws and restrictions on guns.  You on the other hand refuse to be reasonable in admitting that criminal is to blame for his actions.  
         When the gun control side decides to stop pinning blame on inanimate objects and assigns culpability and responsisbility to the individual who does the crime, then the discussion can move forward.  

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  29. P- just calling it as I see it. Whenever a sensible law comes around that will stop criminals from getting guns, the NRA is against it. That's a fact. There is a maze of gun laws in Minnesota that the common person, and even some lawyers, can't understand properly. On that I agree. They should be written more simply. The sausage making that makes for passing laws does not always make for good wording in laws. At the federal level there are very few gun laws. That is the problem. There are too many state laws each different from the other resulting in states with strict laws still having problems with felons, etc. getting guns in states with looser laws and bringing them across the border where they result in gun crimes. We need a few simply written federal laws to make it perfectly clear that felons, domestic abusers, adjudicated mentally ill people, etc. cannot buy guns legally as they can now ( at gun shows in states that have not closed the private seller loophole). You even admit that we haven't really tried gun control in this country. No laws that I advocate for cross any lines for law abiding citizens. You are wrong about that. I can quote studies too. At some point, we need to do what's right and stop the carnage.

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  30. Oh- and P- those inanimate objects you think we should put our attention on? They are designed to kill. The more powerful, the more poeple can be killed. What other "tool" is designed to kill humans? Other "tools" have many uses and occasionally are used to kill someone. But guns- their purpose is to kill and injure. That is why the focus must be on them.

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  31. "Aren't law enforcement exempt from the restrictions of the McCarthy bill? (and rightly so) "

    According to McCarthy, the only reason for having more than ten rounds is to kill as many people as possible as quickly as possible. Is that the reason the police need them then?

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  32. Can you answer your own question Third? The answer is pretty obvious to me.

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  33. "Whenever a sensible law comes around that will stop criminals from getting guns, the NRA is against it. That's a fact"

    The fact is that not a single one of the bills proposed by the Brady Bunch would stop criminals from getting guns, and not a single one was "sensible" in any sane sense of the word.

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  34. My 2 Gun clubs are NRA affiliated, and do not require NRA membership. The recommend it, and each club has a recognized recruiter, but it is not a requirement by any means.
    I can also add Targetmaster as a third "club!" They also do not require NRA membership to shoot in their club.
    I wonder why any gun owner wouldn't be an NRA member though? If we could add another 4 MILLION members or so, we wouldn't ever ned to talk to you again.

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  35. japete - when you show me a gun law that will not take away the right of the law abiding citizen and will impact criminals then I think the NRA and gun owners will get behind it. So far all I see are more restirctions on me and other lawful gun owners that will do NOTHING to stop a criminal.

    Can't get my ID to work so had to post anonymous

    JD

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  36. "" I will suggest CCW Permit holders should have to qualify yearly just like LEO's. That would make a difference. " I like that idea."

    Then why does Helmke say that civilians who undertake LEO training are just practicing to murder people more efficiently?

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  37. Anon- I've not heard Paul Helmke say that one. Can you find the quote?

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  38. As far as the yearly qualification thing, I think those that carry should shoot much more often than once a year. Most LEOs shoot at least once a year and I can tell you as a LEO that most of my brethern dont shoot well at all. I dont agree with them but I understand it, so little of their job involves shooting.

    One interesting thing is that the McCarthy Bill only allows "Active Law Enforcement." I am a reserve LEO. All the officers in my department carry at least 8 loaded magazines in their active shooter response bags in their cars in addition to the 2 mags on their belt. I have purchased those additional mags out of pocket from a gun store. As I understand it, under the McCarthy law I could not do this since I am not an "Active Law Enforcement Officer." Likewise retired LEOs could not buy full capacity magazines under that law.

    As to ranges requiring NRA Membership, I cant speak to any but my own. We carry our liability insurance through the NRA and a term of that insurance (because of the NRA's safety programs) is that those belonging to the range be members.

    Japete, I know we will never see eye to eye. But good on you for having this site. You are better at what you do (though I disagree with your position) for it. You will not claim in public again the LEOs use 10 round mags, which strengthens you in argumentation. You have started using the term magazine instead of clips, awesome, definately sounds more professional. I am more likely to have a real discourse with someone and look for common ground when I think they have some idea of what they are talking about. Seriously, this is not a criticism. This blog was a good idea on your part whether this was an anticipated outcome for you.

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  39. Thank you. Your comments are appreciated

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  40. " I will suggest CCW Permit holders should have to qualify yearly just like LEO's. That would make a difference. " I like that idea. It's a good one but doesn't necessarily happen and particularly if one doesn't even have to have a permit to carry as in Arizona.

    It's a good idea to be proficient with any weapon regardless of whether you have a license for it. Since Chicago has almost half the population of the entire state of Arizona, I would argue that training in Chicago is far more important. Unfortunately, that is extremely difficult to do since training ranges within Chicago city limits are illegal.

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  41. " I would argue that training in Chicago is far more important. Unfortunately, that is extremely difficult to do since training ranges within Chicago city limits are illegal."

    A slight correction. It's not illegal to have a training range in Chicago city limits as long as that range is owned, operated, and used exclusively by the Chicago PD. It's civilian accessible ranges that are illegal in Chicago.

    Just another one of the many unjust police exemptions.

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  42. The issue of training is moot.
    Why? Those state that require no training or very limited training have no statistical differences in criminal behaviors by permitees than do states with very strict standards.

    Its just not an issue. I shoot about once a week. I know people who bought a gun seventeen years ago and put it in the nightstand drawer, In either case, we both have the means to defend ourselves.

    Training is an impediment to many people. It's expensive and time consuming and it limits those who are able to defend them selves. Just as permit fees are an impediment. Often the people who are at the most risk due to location and job opportunities just can not afford $200 for training and $100 dollars for a non guaranteed permit application. I have fronted people the money to get their permits who have really needed it simply to give them the means of self defense.
    Economic status should not impinge on ones ability to protect one and family. Adding requirements will do this.

    My last student was a single mom with three kids. Her ex said he was going down to work in the reconstruction of Katrina and has never come back. She was working front desk at a towing company and was terrified of some of the people who came in. She would have loved to have quit but she has health insurance thru them. No other job that she could find has coverage. Her costs to get a permit would have been one quarter of her take home pay. This is wrong. .

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  43. you posted......
    " I will suggest CCW Permit holders should have to qualify yearly just like LEO's. That would make a difference. " I like that idea. It's a good one but doesn't necessarily happen and particularly if one doesn't even have to have a permit to carry as in Arizona.


    We already ARE qualified. To gain a permit to exercise a constitutional recognized right, we must submit to a criminal background check. We have to show understanding of a firearm. And we have to demonstrate sanity.

    I'd love for you and your fanbase to have to submit to the test you've forced upon us in order to exercise any of your constitutional rights.

    I don't think you'd pass.

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  44. Regarding magazines, 20 or 30 round magazines are standard for most modern semi automatic rifles, except for those designed solely for hunting. Rifles for recreational target shooting and self defense usually come with a 30 round magazine, that is a standard.

    The police use 30 round magazines in their rifles, except for certain sniper rifles, depending on the department, agency, and the role of the police marksman or sniper.

    Regulating magazine capacity will never stop criminals. If it did, there would have been a significant impact after the 1994 AWB went into effect. In the well publicized mass shootings where 30 round magazines were used, there were many opportunities for people to intervene and solve the underlying problems well before firearms ever entered the equation. Basically a magazine ban is feel-good legislation meant to address a situation that was not the fault of the magazines, and could have been avoided before firearms became involved. If this ban were to pass, I would be unable to purchase a 30 round magazine (In NY I am already restricted to buying only mags made before '94), even though I only intend to use them for competition target shooting and possible self defense. Meanwhile a criminal or madman will just make them or find a way to buy them illegally, or learn to reload quickly, or come up with an even more deadly weapon.

    Also, while I very much appreciate you being open to the comments from the pro-firearms side and allowing us to refute and argue what you post, I don't appreciate statements that imply that we might not care about others' safety, or that those who point out the law that states that we are indeed the Unorganized Milita, may not be law abiding citizens (as implied by putting quotations around law abiding), if that wasn't your intent then I apologize for interpreting it wrong.

    -DHS

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  45. Do you guys actually believe all thus stuff? Amazing.

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  46. The very fact that you could believe that people who own a weapon designed to kill don't need any training is proof enough for me that should all have training. What nonsense. I can't believe you actually believe this stuff.

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  47. LE in my area carry magazines of more than 10 but not 30. 30 round mags for police are not standard for most. If you need 30 rounds perhaps your aim isn't so good

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  48. In many styles of shooting competition there are more than 30 targets in one stage and 30 round magazines are permitted, we could shoot with ten round mags but why do we need to be restricted for crimes we do not commit? If you are being attacked by a number of assailants, 30 rounds might be necessary to effectively stop them all, you can't make one perfect hit for each attacker. Not a very common scenario but not rare either, why should I be denied the ability to protect myself. What if it was a pack of vicious dogs, people have been attacked by numerous dogs or even wild wolves at once.

    I wouldn't tell police officers that their aim is bad because they use 30 round magazines in their rifles, don't think they'd appreciate it, I certainly don't.

    -DHS

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  49. In CA we have a limit on how many rounds to 10 and it has zero effect on crime. I was asked to look at this last year and how it came about and what I can tell you is the records are under lock and key which required special permission to access for some of the files. The idea it would help was wrong. Standard capacity mags are used in the majority of crime which had greater tragedies than the AZ shooting. We need to enforce current laws and retain public services far greater than create a law there will be no funding to enforce.

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  50. You certainly live in some sort of imaginary world to think you would be attacked by a pack of vicious dogs or wolves- or a number of assailants? It sounds like an adventure movie. As to the aim comment, it was not aimed at police officers but at the guys who think they need 30 rounds for everyday self defense.

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  51. Have you checked to see how many of the crime guns come from other states nearby, like Nevada or Arizona? What current laws are not being enforced by the way?Retaining better public services? Really? Are you willing to raise taxes to do that? That would also cost money for which there is no funding. Why are the records under lock and key? I believe the NRA was responsible for some of that- records concerning guns and gun crimes are very difficult to access- by design of the gun lobby who doesn't want the public to know who is committing crimes. Unless you have another reason for why the records are locked up. I would love to hear it.

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  52. The gun lobby wants to keep certain records under tighter control to prevent misuse, such as harassing law abiding gun owners or interfering in criminal investigations. A list of New York Handgun License owners was released recently by an anti-gun group. Is that really the public's right to know? Law abiding people having their personal information posted online, when they've done nothing wrong? Government agencies are supposed to be subject to public scrutiny, people's personal and private information is not.

    And you must be living in a fantasy world thinking there is no danger of ever being attacked by animals. You've never heard of dog attacks, wolf attacks, coyote attacks, bear attacks?
    http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/local/north_bay&id=7662427
    http://www.5newsonline.com/news/kfsm-crawford-county-jogger-recover-120510,0,7698938.story
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/outposts/2009/10/musician-taylor-mitchell-dies.html
    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/2010/03/12/2010-03-12_teacher_mauled_to_death_by_wild_wolves_while_jogging_in_alaska_police_say.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fatal_bear_attacks_in_North_America

    I'm not going to clog up your blog with links, but I want to illustrate that what I said isn't fantasy. Is it very common? No, but is it ok to tell people they're not allowed to have a good way to protect themselves?

    And who has the right to decide what I need for self defense? I hope I never have to shoot anybody, if I ever have to, I hope it only has to be one shot. But I plan to be prepared for the worst. You have the right to decide that nothing can ever hurt you and chose to do nothing to protect yourself, but nobody has the right to decide what I can have for self defense or how I can defend myself.

    -DHS

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  53. Yes, those coyote and wolf attacks are really a problem in my neighborhood. I do have an occasional bear bothering my bird feeder but nothing I would need a 30 round magazine for. Maybe all those birds at the feeder will attack me, though. I sure could take care of those chickadees and cardinals with a 30 round magazine. And the dogs in my neighborhood? Well, let me see. The last time I checked, they were all pretty much in their fenced yards. No, I just don't see it. You DO live in another world in your mind. You just can't be serious sending me this stuff. You have to do a lot better than this. Sorry.

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  54. So you don't live someplace where coyotes may be a problem, good for you, you don't need to protect yourself from them. Other people, people besides you, might have to. In those articles, those other people, people who have a right to chose if and how to defend themselves, did get attacked by animals. Those events aren't a made up word in my mind, it's right there in those articles. How can you seriously say animal attacks aren't a threat when I just gave links to reports of animals attacks?

    Just because it doesn't apply to you personally, doesn't mean it will not apply to other people. You can chose for yourself if you need a gun. You can choose for yourself if you need a 30 round magazine. However, neither you, nor the government, have a right to dictate whether or not I can defend myself, or how I can defend myself. The government may have a right to prevent me from doing something that would be dangerous to the rest of the law abiding public, but the government can't tell me that I can only have X amount of rounds in my firearm to defend myself.

    -DHS

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  55. http://www.ironwordranch.com/

    Sorry I forgot to post that link I wanted you to read.

    http://www.ironwordranch.com/

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  56. Quote. Have you checked to see how many of the crime guns come from other states nearby, like Nevada or Arizona? What current laws are not being enforced by the way?Retaining better public services? Really? Are you willing to raise taxes to do that? That would also cost money for which there is no funding. Why are the records under lock and key? I believe the NRA was responsible for some of that- records concerning guns and gun crimes are very difficult to access- by design of the gun lobby who doesn't want the public to know who is committing crimes. Unless you have another reason for why the records are locked up. I would love to hear it. Unquote.

    What records are so hard to find? What conspiracy do you have the NRA involved in now? Criminal justice files are very easy to get. Data practices acts and FBI reports are very simple processess. Often the the data is online and readily availae if you know how to look.

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  57. Japete said: "As to the aim comment, it was not aimed at police officers but at the guys who think they need 30 rounds for everyday self defense."

    There is nothing everyday about defending oneself. You have just realized that this day may be your last and you are in deep kimchi. Yesterday you cursed the Glock 23 on your hip as too bulky and too heavy. Now you are cursing yourself for not figuring out a way to carry a full size duty gun in .45 ACP.

    More ammo is good in that moment. Should you be able to resolve the situation with 1-4 rounds? Twould be nice, sounds reasonable, but if things were reasonable you wouldnt have to defend yourself either. Laws that will ban the 13 round magazines for my G23 kind of concern me.

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  58. "Yes, those coyote and wolf attacks are really a problem in my neighborhood."

    So it's only a problem if you have the problem?

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  59. Joan, so because YOU wouldn't need it, it's okay to ban it? You might just have chickadees and fenced dogs in your yard, but I or my friends have had bears and wolves. In fact, our local wolf pack has grown overly aggressive, having attacked dogs and treed several women.

    You also haven't addressed the sporting use of 30 round mags that has been mentioned several times.

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  60. I don't argue that I need a 30 round magazine for most wild animal attacks. I will argue that I need a repeating arm that allows rapid and accurate followup shots. I live in bear country, so a heavy revolver is a good choice for us in many cases. Heck, we have bears in our backyard -- ones messed with some little girls earlier this year, actually, and it had to be destroyed!

    Then again, we also have some serious wolf and coyote issues. There are also a lot of feral dogs up here and even some (illegal) wolf-dog hybrids which are very aggressive animals. Given that our local suburban wolf pack of half a dozen animals has been eating dogs and treeing people (NOT normal wolf behavior--that is very aggressive), it is not unreasonable to envision a scenario in which there are a half dozen attackers.

    "One shot per bad guy" is a figment of hollywood imagination. You don't shoot a target once and see what happens, nor do things that are shot fly across the room or instantly die most of the time. You shoot until the attack stops. Animals are tough and react unpredictably. If they are aggressive and adrenaline is surging through them, they may take multiple rounds before their attack stops. Or a warning shot may send them running (if they know to be scared of people with guns). For six wolves, a standard capacity semiauto mag (~15 rounds) and a spare mag would not be an unreasonable amount of firepower. Heck, the wildlife officials are toting shotguns, bear spray, and a sidearm too.

    Just because you're willing to feed the occasional female jogger (that is who has been treed) or child to wild animals doesn't mean that everyone thinks that is acceptable.

    Besides, I have no need to justify why I need magazines with standard capacity, no more than I need to justify why I need to right a letter to the editor or worship as I choose. You, who seek to restrict a specific enumerated right, need to justify why your infringement is necessary. You can't pretend that there are zero costs to implementing your policies. There is some cost, and that needs to be weighed against any benefits.

    Just because you live in a place where you don't feel that this is a concern doesn't mean that everyone does.

    Cheers,
    Chris from Alaska

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  61. NRA CLUBS

    Our local club requires NRA membership. This is due to a condition of their insurance. NRA-affiliated clubs basically get a good deal on insurance which covers up to the first million bucks or so of liability (just like members of AARP can get a good deal on certain life insurance because there is a "group buy"). If they allow a non-NRA member to shoot at the club, then that first million dollars of liability comes out of either the club's hide, or, with what our club does, out of a second -- more expensive -- policy. That is why day range fees are high at our club.

    The other shooting range is run by the state. They have infinite liability (well, limited by the depth of the state's pockets, I guess) and thus don't require NRA membership because they don't have the same pressing need for insurance.

    The "gun guys" do not like law enforcement.

    I have no problem with law enforcement in general. I've worked with cops. Most of them are good guys. They do a hard, dangerous job and often have to deal with the worst side of our society, day in and day out. I just don't like the small number of police officers who overstep or abuse their authority. Just because you have a badge does not make you a moral paragon or all-knowing god.

    In an extreme case, look at Egypt -- are you really siding with the secret police who are viciously beating human-rights activists, peaceful protestors, and journalists? Would you also side with the stasi, or local law enforcement in the deep south in Jim Crow, or other oppressive police forces? Of course, most contemporary American police are not anywhere near as corrupt or evil. However, there are certainly some who have abused their offices to oppress minority populations or personally enrich themselves. Heck an Anchorage cop right now is under trial for sexually assualting rape victims.

    I got past the whole "police officers are always 100% good all the time" thing when I was around 12 years old and started to realize that there are shades of gray in the world.

    Police Mag Capacity

    I believe that my local police department uses 1911-style pistols which have 7+1 round capacities. Of course, I doubt that you would approve of these firearms for civilian use, given that the 1911 is a military-pattern sidearm that fires a large, relatively lethal (for a handgun) round.

    Our state troopers do use the Glock 22 which is a .40 S&W with 15 rounds standard.

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  62. "I erred in saying that L.E. doesn't carry more than 10 rounds."

    Good for you japete. That right there separates you from your antagonists, or from most of them at least.

    I've said it many times lately that I'm not particularly into this business of magazine capacity restriction. When pinned down I said I'd put it at 14. But I find the whole thing a little silly when murderous mental patients can simply walk into a gun show or pick up the want-ads and buy a gun.

    But now what's happening is the usual thing. McCarthy and her ideas are silly, but what's become even sillier is the fanatic and excessive opposition to them.

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  63. John- I didn't need to look any further than this on the link you sent before I determined that anything you send me will not be worth the read: " Living with GLOCKS
    The Complete Guide to the New Standard in Combat Handguns" When you guys actually think that you need your Glocks for combat of some sort, I'm done with you. We are living in the U.S. where there are not soldiers on our streets engaging in combat unless you include the many who do actually kill people on the streets every day or unless you include folks like Jared Loughner who shouldn't have had his Glock but got it anyway. Had he read the book linked to above, he would have thought that was engaging in combat when he killed innocent people at a shopping mall.

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  64. See: http://urbancoyoteresearch.com/WhiteandGehrt_CoyoteAttacks.pdf

    " Because coyote attacks are infrequent resulting in small sample sizes, standardizing information at the national level would be most beneficial. "

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  65. As you can read in the linked article, coyote attacks anywhere are extremely rare.

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  66. Heather- what are the sporting needs for 30 round mags? I have yet to see why anyone NEEDS those large capacity magazines.

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  67. Chris, believe it or not, I have bears in my back yard, too- in the middle of urban Minnesota. I just stay inside if I see one at my bird feeder. I also have fox and deer. I could shoot a lot of animals in the middle of town if I so chose. But I choose to get out of their way and stay inside when I see them.

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  68. Chris- " are you really siding with the secret police who are viciously beating human-rights activists, peaceful protestors, and journalists?" Of course not. That is not what I am talking about, as you know, and you even went on to clarify that that isn't happening in this country with some exceptions. Police officers can be corrupt and dangerous in their own right when acting against citizens wrongfully. None of us are perfect in our jobs. Unfortunately, when a police officer goes wrong, it often involves undue force or violence resulting in the injury or death of a private citizen. I do not condone this in any way.

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  69. "I have yet to see why anyone NEEDS those large capacity magazines."

    But as we have seen, police use them more often than not. So perhaps civilian gunowners want them for the SAME reason that police want them.

    At this point, the usual reply is "police have different needs." Perhaps -- but if you want to claim that police need them but civilian gunowners don't, you have not made that case. And the the burden is upon YOU to make it, since it is you who seeks a change in the law.

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  70. So what will happen if 11rd+ magazines are banned?

    Unless something else is done (something that works) nuts will still try shoot multiple victims. Suppose one has a 10rd magazine and only can shoot 10 times -- maybe the ban worked.

    BUT -- suppose the shooter has many magazines AND has practiced quick reloads OR suppose the shooter brings 2 or 3 guns, and shoots many more victims. What will happen? We all know what will happen -- we will be asked why anyone "needs" more than one handgun or one magazine.

    japete, gunowners know that's what will happen -- which explains much of the opposition to starting the process with magazine capacity.

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  71. Jay- much difference between the needs of police officers and the needs of civilians who do not face the same daily risks.

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  72. Jay- your supposed situations involve people like Jared Loughner thinking they need guns for killing many people. You, I hope, are not going to be in that situation. On a daily basis, you just plain don't need 30 round mags. unless you have something evil in mind. For self defense? No. There is no way you can justify 30 round mags for average gun owners.

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  73. "On a daily basis, you just plain don't need 30 round mags. unless you have something evil in mind."
    "There is no way you can justify 30 round mags for average gun owners."
    Just to establish your opinion on another subject...going to the shooting range isn't legitimate sporting activity in your eyes?

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  74. "much difference between the needs of police officers and the needs of civilians who do not face the same daily risks"

    Police need guns for self defense -- not "mass murder." What you wrote above is (sorry) the usual generality that does not make the case.

    As an answer to the "need" question, which applies to police AND civilians: When forced to use a gun for self defense, both police AND civilians miss MUCH more often than they hit. In addition, when someone is shooting at you, shooting them only once often does NOT make them stop shooting at you (which is what you want most).

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  75. "your supposed situations involve people like Jared Loughner thinking they need guns for killing many people."

    Can we agree that (alas) it's going to happen again until some real solutions are found?

    "There is no way you can justify 30 round mags for average gun owners."

    One talks about 30 but tries to ban 11. As I wrote previously, I may be open to compromise here. But if 11+ magazines are banned and a multiple shooting is committed with multiple guns or multiple 10rd magazines, we all know what will happen -- we will be asked why anyone "needs" more than one handgun or one magazine.

    japete, gunowners know that's what will happen (and I am not seeing you try to deny it) which explains much of the opposition to starting the process with magazine capacity, "needed" or not.

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  76. Can't you shoot off the 10 round mags at the shooting range and have just as much fun? At least at a shooting range, there is little danger of having the mags in a public place where serious damage can be done to human life.

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  77. I believe, Jay, that police find themselves in situations much more often than the average citizen, to need a large capacity mag for self defense against a criminal, etc. That is their job. They face situations that most law abiding citizens will ever face on a daily basis.

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  78. I wonder, Jay, if you recall the 1994-2004 assault weapons ban when these mags were prohibited. People seemed to function quite well then without the 30 round mags. They can do so again. No one is saying that there should be less than 10 round mags. That has been an agreed upon capacity for normal use and that is what it would be again if this legislation passed. Neither I or anyone I have talked to in the gvp movement has mentioned banning all magazines. We know perfectly well that is just plain not going to happen. I hope you will agree to this modest measure to keep innocent people from being shot to death.

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  79. "Can't you shoot off the 10 round mags at the shooting range and have just as much fun? At least at a shooting range, there is little danger of having the mags in a public place where serious damage can be done to human life."

    I suppose I "could" have just as much fun, if I were forced to by law...but my thumbs would hurt from all the reloading of the magazines I'd have to do...why hurt my thumbs because of a whack job? (Sounds like a silly argument?)

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  80. "...if you recall the 1994-2004 assault weapons ban when these mags were prohibited. People seemed to function quite well then without the 30 round mags."

    Not prohibited. You're showing your knowledge level of the law again. New production and importation was banned...plenty of the magazines existed, and there really wasn't any shortage.

    The new proposal severely limits the use - and represents a stepping stone type of legislation...which has ZERO chance of passing.

    I don't understand, with all the problems currently facing this country with unemployment, health care, etc...why are democrats focusing so solely on this issue? Seems rather petty!

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  81. ..and you need to answer my question directly.

    Do you feel going to the shooting range is a legitimate sporting activity?

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  82. "Chris, believe it or not, I have bears in my back yard, too- in the middle of urban Minnesota. I just stay inside if I see one at my bird feeder. I also have fox and deer. I could shoot a lot of animals in the middle of town if I so chose. But I choose to get out of their way and stay inside when I see them."

    That's great that you have been in situations that allow you to do that. This summer, three little girls were playing at the neighbor hood playground. In less than fifteen seconds a blackbear popped out of the woods and had them on the ground. It wouldn't leave when adults ran at it waving and screaming(no guns allowed in our neighborhood).

    "Heather- what are the sporting needs for 30 round mags? I have yet to see why anyone NEEDS those large capacity magazines. "

    In this very post, someone explained that there are certain shooting sports where one round is more than 30 shots. That's a valid use there.

    Additionally, we've repeatedly explained several times the use of NORMAL CAPACITY magazines which would also be banned by this proposed legislation, yet you continue making this an issue between 10 and 30 round mags, ignoring the majority of us who own mags that fall in between there.

    "I wonder, Jay, if you recall the 1994-2004 assault weapons ban when these mags were prohibited. People seemed to function quite well then without the 30 round mags."

    Have you read the two? They are NOT the same. The new one is significantly more restrictive. I know this has been talked about before on your blog.

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  83. Better that your thumbs hurt, Pat, than that another Jared Loughner shoots a bunch of innocent people. That really hurts!!

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  84. First of all, Pat, this is certainly not the only issue Democrats are focused on. I wish it were. There are many more pressing problems now but if this isn't on the list, then shame on everyone for not getting it higher up the list of priorities. We can walk and chew gum I think. This is an issue of public health and safety that fits with many other issues going on right now. Why are Republicans focused on changing the definition of rape and trying to stop family planning clinics from provided health care services to women? Aren't there more important things to do? Why are the Minnesota Republicans wanting to repeal Mn. gun laws when people are out of work and we have a serious deficit?

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  85. Yes, Heather, the new bill is more restrictive as the older one should have been since we still had the ammo magazines and guns that were prohbited from import and sale. This time around, the law will better keep the large capacity mags from being sold, and owned. That is the purpose. If someone had wanted to shoot that bear, I guess that would have been O.K. provided that someone else was not right there and would also have been shot. It is still pretty rare to have bear attacks on children. It is much more common for children to be shot to death in homicides, accidents or suicides.

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  86. Japete.

    Why should law abiding Citizens be hampered or constrained by a law which over ten years did nothing to stop crime?

    Do not apply your little world view from Duluth against the entire United States.

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  87. Joan - I'll disagree that this legislation would have stopped Loughner. He was a whackjob nutball, and there's really no way to tell HOW he would have snapped. If anything would have stopped him - it would have been his parents turning him in for involuntarily mental evaluation, the army for reporting him as a drug abuser, and his college turning him over to the police for assault (verbal outbursts that threaten other individuals are assault).

    Its extremely disappointing and short-sighted to see that gun control is the most important issue some agendas. It must be nice to be employed, living in your own home, warm, fed, healthy, not addicted to anything...etc...with time to devote to this issue. There are others out there who don't have the time, and can't understand why we're not focusing on getting them back to work...into homes, off drugs, etc...

    I am glad to see you agree that going to the shooting range is a legitimate sporting activity, many on your side do not! Please bear this in mind during your future statements and arguments regarding gun control.

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  88. As I noted in a previous post, P, the AWB law was just beginning to stop the banned guns from showing up in crime traces when it was allowed to lapse. We need to give things time to work. There are so many guns in this country and the illegal ones need to be drained from the pool. That takes time. As I have said, we haven't really tried federal gun control in this country. You guys have made sure of that and then you can say these laws don't work. It's a self fulfilling prophecy.

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  89. Pat- you are wrong. If Jared Loughner's name would have been reported by his college and/or the military, he would have been in the prohibited list of NICS. But we all know he could have bought a fun from a private seller if he was stopped by an ffl. As to your other statements, you are wrong that most in the gvp movement don't want shooting ranges. I am associated with many if not most of them. I have never heard anyone say that. That, of course, is what the gun lobby says we say. They are wrong. Also,I don't know what you are talking about when you say people just want everyone to focus on jobs. That is what, hopefully, the Republicans will do instead of repealing everything we already have. Get on with the jobs. Leave health care reform alone. It will actually create jobs instead of "killing" jobs. The Democrats, as I have said, are not as focused on the gun issue as I want them to be or they should be. They can do this and still focus on jobs. This is, by the way, not a Democratic or Republican issue. This is an American issue of great importance to all.

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  90. "But we all know he could have bought a fun from a private seller if he was stopped by an ffl" -- I think you meant to say "gun" or maybe it was a Freudian slip.

    "As to your other statements, you are wrong that most in the gvp movement don't want shooting ranges"
    You're not reading what I wrote. I said that many on your side don't view those as a "legitimate sporting activity"...and would support legislation banning/restricting all things not used for "legitimate sporting activities".

    "This is, by the way, not a Democratic or Republican issue. This is an American issue of great importance to all."
    Completely agree - you're trying to restrict Americans. Restrictions of anything on the Bill of Rights should concern everyone.

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  91. Pat. You can't keep hiding behind second amendment arguments. They do 't work anymore. Scalia and Alito agree in last 2 rulings. It is a specious argument which has worked for you guys for way too long. Any restriction to you guys means taking away your rights. You are wrong.

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  92. See this is why I have a hard time believing that you don't want to ban guns. You are correct that in the recent rulings they did not say "no restrictions what so ever" but they also did not say "you can ban whatever you want" I think there will be more cases brought up that will clarify the position of the court.

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  93. "I believe, Jay, that police find themselves in situations much more often than the average citizen, to need a large capacity mag for self defense against a criminal, etc."

    OK -- police need to use a gun more often for self defense than the average citizen. BUT they feel that an 11+ rd magazine is more effective for self defense. I do NOT see where a lesser chance of self defense occurring equals being denied the best means of self defense when it does occur -- and gunowners can supply a a nearly endless list of instances of civilians needing guns for self defense.

    I would not be surprised to learn that civilians miss MORE than police when self defense is required -- and thus need more shots if they are to be successful.

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  94. Disagree again.

    "Reasonable" restrictions already exist. No felons, no mentally unstable, no drug users, no machine guns, no anti-aircraft missiles, no flame throwers...

    As for "hiding" behind the 2nd -- I'm "hiding" behind nothing. What's common sense for me is that since I'm not a felon, mentally unstable nor addicted to anything illegal -- I should be able to go to the range free from any unreasonable or expensive prohibitions on my sport.

    Why is that so hard to grasp? Hoplophobic is a good word to describe this "nonsense".

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  95. "No one is saying that there should be less than 10 round mags."

    "Neither I or anyone I have talked to in the gvp movement has mentioned banning all magazines."

    HUH?

    I never said anything about banning less-than-10rd magazines OR banning all magazines.

    My problem is the many gun control advocates who want to ban many types of GUNS even though they have less-than-10rd magazines.

    I also have a problem with the gun control advocates who will INEVITABLY try to limit the number of guns and/or magazines owned, following the likely event (alas) that one day some nut will shoot many victims with several guns or several 10rd magazines.

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  96. "You can't keep hiding behind second amendment arguments. They don't work anymore. Scalia and Alito agree in last 2 rulings."

    japete is right. The only thing those rulings prohibit for sure is banning all handguns. That means that gun control advocates believe that the following (for example) would be constitutional:

    Being limited to one .32 or smaller caliber handgun with one 10rd or less magazine which must be locked up at home, after a 3-month wait and a $500 annual permit.

    This is why gun owners must still be vigilant. They should NOT count on the Court and the 2nd to protect them from all that.

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  97. "recall the 1994-2004 assault weapons ban when these mags were prohibited. People seemed to function quite well then without the 30 round mags."

    It's been pointed out that we did not see good evidence of less shootings during the 10 years of the ban. Not enough time to work, you say.

    Now you say people got along well without the mags? Wouldn't "not enough time" also apply?

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  98. I guess the argument of addressing the problem before guns even gets into the mix, is just going to be continually ignored. There was enough evidence that Loughner needed psychiatric help, to get him that help well before he went on his shooting spree. If we took away all guns somehow, he's still a madman who wants to kill, and he will find a way to kill. So how is that any kind of an improvement? If he had gotten help before, then he wouldn't have even gotten as far as trying to kill, that's a solution that works without banning anything.

    The old AWB was pointless, it's magazine ban was pointless. Criminals can illegally obtain or make 30 round magazines. I gave examples of legitimate uses of 30 round mags, but you ignored it, or don't believe it. And unless you are involved in or study self defense shootings, you can't say how many rounds somebody needs. There's no such thing as a by-the-books self defense shooting, you never know if you might need 2 rounds to stop an attack or 40.

    We all hope we never get attacked, but some of us decide to prepare just in case. You can't say an ordinary person's need for self defense is less than a police officer's need, they are not special people who are somehow better than other citizens. Police officers may be more likely to need to defend themselves, but their need is no more important or greater than yours or mine.

    If you really, really want to stop gun crime (and crime in general), you will go after criminals, you will work on urban poverty and poor education, you will work to create jobs. Bans don't do any of those things, they just make the demand shift to another source. Never mind that the criminal use of 30 round magazines is so incredibly minuscule, that to even put forth the concept of such a ban, illustrates the lack of understanding or care for the situation. Thousands of people are getting shot by gang members with illegally possessed handguns, and we're sitting here arguing over the magazines of handguns and rifles that gang members never use because they can't conceal them. A handful of mass shootings occur each year with these mags, and several opportunities existed to intervene well before the shooting occurred in almost every single case. This is why we're putting up such a fight, millions of good people have their rights threatened, when the real problem goes unaddressed. We're the target of all this legislation, while the criminals themselves mostly get ignored. How sensible is that?

    -DHS

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  99. O.K. DHS- I admit it since you don't believe anything I say and continually harass me until I say what you want me to say. Tomorrow, I am forming a posse and we are coming for your guns. There. I said it. Are you happy now? I promise to stop working on preventing and reducing shootings because you guys don't want me to and I will turn all of my attention to other things. Good night.

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  100. Dear Thomas,

    You are not welome on this blog. None of your comments will be published and you can stop harassing me and ridiculing me. Thank you very much.

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  101. "Yes, Heather, the new bill is more restrictive as the older one should have been since we still had the ammo magazines and guns that were prohbited from import and sale. This time around, the law will better keep the large capacity mags from being sold, and owned. That is the purpose"

    I'm confused. You originally stated that we should be okay with this ban because we survived well enough during the first AWB. Yet you are aware that this new bill is far more restrictive. So your original comparison is invalid.

    And, in your own words, it will be illegal for me to own all of my current handgun mags save two. You support making me into a criminal, or forcing me to destroy (since they can't be sold or transferred!) these things that I spent a significant amount of money on.

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  102. LE in my area carry magazines of more than 10 but not 30. 30 round mags for police are not standard for most. If you need 30 rounds perhaps your aim isn't so good

    That's not actually true. In 2008, the Minnesota State Patrol adopted the S&W M&P 15, which is an AR-pattern rifle, as their standard patrol rifle. You would know the M&P 15 as an Assault Weapon because it looks scary. Standard issue mags for AR-pattern rifles are 30 rounds.

    I'm guessing at least a few local police departments in Minnesota also issue such equipment, given that there are stories of police officers losing their AR-15 style rifles (http://www.lineofduty.com/the-blotter/109163-mn-police-chief-finds-arsenal-in-his-kids-fort).

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  103. Tomorrow, I am forming a posse and we are coming for your guns. There. I said it. Are you happy now?

    I don't really believe oyu intend to do that. I do feel that you wouldn't mind seeing many of us imprisoned, because you pursue a legislative agenda with that objective.

    Don't believe me? We own some standard capacity magazines. If McCarthy's ban passes, then I will immediately become a felon overnight for owning them, and it will only be an affirmative defense that I owned them prior to the ban going into effect. This law would put me into jail for up to 10 years, and even if the affirmative defense worked, it could ruin me financially and professionally.

    I promise to stop working on preventing and reducing shootings because you guys don't want me to and I will turn all of my attention to other things. Good night.

    I don't want you to stop working to prevent or reduce shootings. I would love it if you worked to reduce violent crime and suicides. That is honestly one of the reasons I bother to engage with you on this blog. I genuinely wish that all the effort, time, and money wasted on strategies we know are not effective could instead be spent on procedures that have a better chance of actually reducing deaths. Every dollar we flush down the gun control drain is a dollar that can't be spent on mental health services, substance abuse treatment, and incarcerating violent repeat offenders.

    Frankly, I would much prefer that NRA could pour even more resources into shooter safety programs, safe range design, and so on.

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  104. I tire of all of the comments here. Yes, O.K. I admit it. I want to make you a criminal and I want to see you in jail. That is my main aim. Are you happy now? Tell it to all of your friends. The main goal of the Brady Campaign and other gvp groups is to put as many law abiding citizens as possible in jail and let the criminals run free with their guns and ammunition. That is clearly the kind of world we want to see.

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  105. " I do feel that you wouldn't mind seeing many of us imprisoned, because you pursue a legislative agenda with that objective."

    Seriously. Sometimes it's hard to know what to say to you guys.

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  106. As an American living in Canada, and subject to its stringent gun laws--including a 10 round mag limit on semi-auto handguns and a 5 round limit on rifles--no CCW, intense storage and transport laws, licensing, registration, and arrest of people using any gun for any self-defense--I can tell you that these laws have done nothing to stop gun crime. In fact it has increased. No law stops the Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg gangs from shooting each other--while the law-abiding cannot defend themselves. It took a little while for my Canadian wife to get used to my CCW in The U.S., but she "gets it" now.

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  107. But Csnadien gun deaths nowhere near US per 100000- much lower. Guess laws must work.

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  108. Yes Joan - we've all seen that hit piece Bowling for Columbine. Beside firearms Joan - can you think of any other differences between the US and Canada...cultural perhaps? Which country's media glorifies violence and thug culture?

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  109. You pretty much answered your own question but actually studies have been done showing that children all over the world are exposed to similar media but the US has more gun deaths,Pat.

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  110. Studies? Source?

    All crime rates in the US are higher than Canada...not just firearms; robbery, domestic violence, etc. Why is that?

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  111. Good question Pat. Any answers?

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  112. Nope...but I don't think banning my deer rifle, shotgun, handguns and hobbies are going to help.

    I could use some answers to the questions on my comments on your newer post as well...
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkS2BRoCd2I&feature=player_embedded#

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  113. Two reasons for low Canadian crime rates. Population density and social programs.

    Very few densely packed cities, historically the petri dish of criminal behaviors.

    More invasive program of social programs designed to keep kids from starting down the wrong path. They are expensive
    But have been successful. Population density is biggest help. Hard to form a gang when your closest neighbor is miles away.

    Some say weather and environment act in the mix. When its cold and dark half the year It's not conductive to kids being left alone and getting into trouble. In the summer the Mosquitos carry away any hoodlums dumb enough to sit on the street Corner

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  114. Interesting P. I wonder if that's why Minnesota's gun deaths per 100,000 are lower than other states? That plus the fact that we currently have a requirement for more stringent local background checks in order to get a one year permit to purchase handguns and assault type guns. In Alaska, sucides by gun are high as they are in Minnesota. Weather? Hmm. Interesting to think about.

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  115. japete: "Tomorrow, I am forming a posse and we are coming for your guns."

    Will you pick me to be on the posse? Maybe we can go to Sean's place first, that should be an easy one.

    Magnafan said of the Canadian laws, "I can tell you that these laws have done nothing to stop gun crime."

    Now that's quite a conclusion considering the breathtaking differences in the statistics between the US and Canada. In other words the vast difference is due to other factors than the strict gun laws? Is that it?

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  116. Actually minnesotas restrictions only apply to transactions begween an FFL and a private Citizen. There is no waiting period between private Citizen and private Citizen, nor should there be. If you look at any of the northern lightly populated states' from Iowa to Idaho the rates are lower.

    If you remove the Inuit suicide rates from the alaskan data it's suicide rate rate is lower than most states. We have been terrible in dealing with those issues in the. Inuit (or aboriginal) population.

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  117. Japete: “I believe, Jay, that police find themselves in situations much more often than the average citizen, to need a large capacity mag for self defense against a criminal, etc. That is their job. They face situations that most law abiding citizens will ever face on a daily basis.”

    I’ll agree with you that police are *more likely* to need their gun (as they tend to seek out dangerous situations), but the *need* to defend themselves once they are in that situation is identical to any citizen. You have admitted that capacities over 10 rounds have value in protecting officer’s lives. We’d like that same courtesy extended to our lives. Furthermore, there many reasons why the need for a capacity over 10 is more justified for civilians than officers once they are in said life-threatening situation:

    1) Officers wear protective vests.
    2) Officers have a utility belt with multiple 10+ capacity magazines, tazers and pepper spray at the ready.
    3) Officers have backup.
    4) Officers have more backup.

    Because of 3 and 4, officers usually have their opponents outnumbered. Crime victims are far more likely to be outnumbered by their assailants. They have numbers 1 and 2, while the citizen might be in her underwear. Police officers equip themselves with multiple magazines and even backup firearms because the last thing they want to worry about is how much ammo they have left. We have that same need. It is called factor of safety.

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  118. TS- " They have numbers 1 and 2, while the citizen might be in her underwear. Police officers equip themselves with multiple magazines and even backup firearms because the last thing they want to worry about is how much ammo they have left. We have that same need. It is called factor of safety. " How often are you going to find yourself in a situation like this? Really. Seriously. Tell me when you think you will need those large capacity magazines. People just do not find themselves in situations where they are required. Can you give me an example of a law abiding citizen in a situation where they needed a large capacity magazine? On the streets- not out in the wild which some have sent me. In your home? I need to hear about these awful scenarios that you guys seem to think you will be likely to face.

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  119. Japete: “How often are you going to find yourself in a situation like this? Really. Seriously.”

    Once so far. I was attacked by a gang. I guess you can say I didn’t *need* a gun because I am still alive today, but it was their choice not to kill me (or having enough sense to stop before it went too far).

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  120. "In other words the vast difference is due to other factors than the strict gun laws? Is that it?"

    Or perhaps the difference isn't so "vast".

    Comparing police statistics is fraught with problems. Differences in definitions, reporting methods, and simple politics, makes comparisons almost useless.

    The only measure of crime that uses the same methodology and the same definitions across national boundaries is the International Crime Victim Survey.

    And it doesn't show crime in Canada as being significantly lower than in the US.

    http://rechten.uvt.nl/icvs/pdffiles/ICVS2004_05.pdf

    p. 42: The four countries with the highest overall prevalence victimisation rates in 2004 are Ireland, England & Wales, New Zealand and Iceland3. Other countries with comparatively high victimisation rates are Northern Ireland, Estonia, the Netherlands, Denmark, Mexico, Switzerland and Belgium. All these countries have overall victimisation rates that are statistically significantly higher than the average of the 30 participating countries. The USA, Canada, Australia and Sweden show rates near the average. Compared to past results, they have dropped several places in the ranking on overall victimisation.

    p. 43 contains Figure 4: "Overall victimisation for 10 crimes; one year prevalence rates in 2003/04 (percentages) of the top 15 countries and results from earlier surveys. 1989-2005 ICVS and 2005 EU ICS"

    The USA and Canada rank 12th and 13th out of 15.

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  121. Yadayadayada- we have gone over this so many times that it hardly bears repeating but here goes again- I AM TALKING ABOUT GUN DEATHS AND INJURIES ON THIS BLOG AND NOT OVERALL CRIME RATES. THE TWO ARE DIFFERENT COMPARISONS. I KNOW YOU DON'T WANT ME TO BE TALKING ABOUT THE CARNAGE BY GUNS BUT THAT IS WHAT I AM DOING. DIVERTING ATTENTION AWAY FROM GUNS TO OVERALL CRIME IS A TACTIC BUT IT DOESN'T CHANGE THE FACTS. GET OVER IT. I WILL CONTINUE BLOGGING ABOUT GUN DEATHS AND INJURIES ON THIS BLOG.

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  122. "I AM TALKING ABOUT GUN DEATHS AND INJURIES ON THIS BLOG AND NOT OVERALL CRIME RATES. THE TWO ARE DIFFERENT COMPARISONS."

    Exactly. And treating deaths involving guns as somehow qualitatively different from deaths not involving guns is simply not sane.

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  123. I would bet that this family had at least one gun with a standard capacity magazine (more than 10 rounds)Seven people performed this home invasion.
    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/2009/07/14/2009-07-14_fourth_arrest_in_murder_of_byrd_and_melanie_billings_assailants_in_ninja_garb_ca.html

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  124. Not sane? Hmmm So now I'm not sane. Nice. It is common knowledge that gun deaths account for the majority of homicides and suicides in this country. Why would I not want to deal with that national problem? It is the most sane way to come up with a solution.

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  125. Yes, anon- I remember this horrible incident- pretty rare wouldn't you say? And the couple? Could they have responded with a gun with 30 rounds? Hard to say. Once again, the element of surprise. So one incident out of all the other shootings? And that's why you think you need 30 rounds?

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  126. "So one incident out of all the other shootings? And that's why you think you need 30 rounds? "

    If it saves just one life is the standard correct?

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  127. TS, So you were attacked by a gang and that's the reason you carry a gun? Is that it?

    I've been roughed up a few times myself, and I choose not to carry a gun.

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  128. No Mike. I was forbidden from carrying then, and forbidden from carrying now. Don’t go down the path where you say I am better off for it.

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  129. In the 2010 annual survey done by the National Association of Chiefs of Police, a full 98% answered yes to the question "Should any law-abiding citizen be able to purchase a firearm for sport or self defense?

    77% answered yes to the question "Would general recognition throughout the states of CCW permits issued by a state, in the way drivers' licenses are recognized throughout the country, facilitate the violent crime-fighting potential of the professional law enforcement community?"

    And still 71% of police chiefs answered yes to "Do you think qualified, law-abiding armed citizens can be of assistance to the professional law enforcement community in promiting justice and reducing the incidence of violent criminal activity?"

    Survey results here: http://www.nacoponline.org/22nd.pdf

    I think those numbers point out to a growing trend of police chiefs who recognize the value of an armed populace. Having said that, they have their opinions (which I'm sure YOU don't agree to) just like Chief Dolan has his opinions (which I don't agree with).

    The question is, if you value police chief's opinions, will you post the fact that 71% of the nation's police chiefs support armed carry by law-abiding citizens? Or do you think it is "nonsense" because it isn't a belief you value?

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  130. Earlier you said:
    "I believe, Jay, that police find themselves in situations much more often than the average citizen, to need a large capacity mag for self defense against a criminal, etc. That is their job. They face situations that most law abiding citizens will ever face on a daily basis."

    So that means that the capacity of magazines that one is allowed to own should be based on how often they are in a self defense situation? So, an officer with 10 years experience that has never needed to defend themselves doesn't need them either right? Should officers that are often involved in shooting get larger magazines?
    With that logic I will stop renewing my CPR certification, take the fire extinguisher out of my car, and cancel my home owners insurance since you know I don't face the risks that these TOOLS are designed to mitigate on a daily basis.

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  131. I have checked with my Police Chief and County Sheriff- neither agree with these poll results and neither participated. There is no where on the site to say how many chiefs/sheriffs were asked and what the response was. This is not a scientific true random sampling. No information about who put the poll together for the chiefs. In short, I doubt the results here- not because they don't agree with other polling and with what I want, nor because they don't fit with what the Chiefs and Sheriffs I know think about these issues, but because there is not enough information to call this a valid poll.

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  132. I have requested that information from the organization, to have them put it on the website. I doubt you will agree even once they do so. Why?

    Because you quote the VPC numbers that states that 30% of households own guns. A)it is a phone poll. B) VPC doesn't say how many were asked and C)who would likely answer the question "Do you have a firearm in the house?" when a stranger calls? You know how paranoid we are. Yet, you are willing to use it and any media poll that agrees with your position.

    Have you or have you not commented about a poll that "pushed for tighter restrictions, when the poll states "Would you be for tighter laws restricting mental patients from firearms?" The resulting "Yes" is used, in the media and gun control advocates sites, to declare "90% of Americans are for tighter gun restrictions". Because of this, I don't think you have a leg to stand on to lecture about how polls are conducted.

    http://www.vpc.org/studies/gunownership.pdf

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