By Dave Workman
Gun prohibitionists went bonkers recently when the Washington Post got hold of a “White Paper” authored by a senior official with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that suggested 16 different gun law reforms including a re-visit of the “sporting purposes” rule on imports, and relaxing the regulations on silencers.
The report, written by ATF Associate Deputy Director Ronald Turk, included this observation: “Since the sunset of the Assault Weapons ban in 2004, the use of AR-15s, AK-style, and similar rifles now commonly referred to as ‘modern sporting rifles’ has increased exponentially in sport shooting. These firearm types are now standard for hunting activities. ATF could re-examine its almost 20-year-old study to bring it up to date with the sport shooting landscape of today, which is vastly different than what it was years ago. Action shooting sports and organizations such as 3 Gun and the United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) have also drastically expanded in recent years. Restriction on imports serves questionable public safety interests, as these rifles are already generally legally available for manufacture and ownership in the United States.”
This single paragraph popped so many anti-gun bubbles that it must have sounded like popcorn. People hunt with AR-type rifles. They engage in competitions. Lots of people own them. They are popular.
Skip past rifles because this is, after all, American Handgunner. Turk suggested removing the red tape on suppressors. His paper notes, “In the past several years, opinions about silencers have changed across the United States. Their use to reduce noise at shooting ranges and applications within the sporting and hunting industry are now well recognized. At present, 42 states generally allow silencers to be used for sporting purposes. The wide acceptance of silencers and corresponding changes in state laws have created substantial demand across the country.”
Turk adds, “While DOJ and ATF have historically not supported removal of items from the NFA, the change in public acceptance of silencers arguably indicates that the reason for their inclusion in the NFA is archaic and historical reluctance to removing them from the NFA should be reevaluated. ATF’s experience with the criminal use of silencers also supports reassessing their inclusion in the NFA (and) silencers are very rarely used in criminal shootings. Given the lack of criminality associated with silencers, it is reasonable to conclude that they should not be viewed as a threat to public safety necessitating NFA classification, and should be considered for reclassification under the GCA.”
Turk’s suggestions just might find a receptive audience on Capitol Hill and the White House. And that has the gun prohibition lobby nervous.
National CCW Reciprocity Update
Insider Online recently spoke with Tatum Gibson, communications director for Congressman Richard Hudson (NC-08), sponsor of HR 38, the National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, learning that the legislation is gathering momentum.
“We currently have about 150 co-sponsors,” she reported.
That’s not bad for a bill introduced on the first day of the new Congress. That fact underscores Hudson’s devotion to the idea. He floated a similar bill in the last Congress and it drew 216 co-sponsors. This time around, with Republicans in full control on Capitol Hill and a Second Amendment-friendly administration, this bill has a chance of becoming law.
What will it mean? The short answer is that it will enable legally-armed, licensed citizens from one state to carry their defensive sidearm in other states, provided they follow all the rules of the host state. When in Rome, as they say.
Expect stiff opposition from politicians from states with restrictive gun laws, such as New Jersey, New York, Maryland, California and Massachusetts, for example. If it becomes law that could mean a lot of people will be visiting handgunlaw.us, the popular on-line resource that keeps up-to-date on the handgun laws.
Hudson’s bill is now in the House Judiciary Committee. As this was written, no hearing date had been set, but Gibson was hopeful that might happen sooner than later.
New Mexico Sheriffs Oppose Gun Control Bills
Speaking of gun legislation, the worst nightmare for gun control proponents is a professional lawman stepping up to oppose your scheme in public.
Down in New Mexico recently, a whole organization of lawmen — the New Mexico Sheriff’s Association — issued a public statement in opposition to a pair of gun control bills in the state Legislature, House Bill 50 and Senate Bill 48. The National Rifle Association quoted some of the highlights of their opposition.
“These measures would make it harder for law-abiding New Mexicans to exercise their Second Amendment rights, waste scarce law enforcement resources, and do nothing to keep guns out of the hands of criminals,” the sheriffs association said in a statement signed by 32 of the state’s 33 county lawmen.
They added that the “scheme would be unenforceable without creating a gun registry. We know this because a 2013 U.S. Department of Justice internal memo on gun violence prevention strategies stated that the success of expanded background check laws depends on requiring firearm registration.”
The legislation is the latest incarnation of efforts backed by the gun prohibition lobby to virtually eliminate private firearms transfers without a background check conducted by a licensed firearms dealer. Critics contend that this creates a de facto gun registry.
Similar laws have been passed in Washington, Oregon, California and Nevada, and there is no evidence that they have prevented a single violent crime, or stopped a criminal from acquiring a gun through illicit channels.
Indeed, in Washington State, where the law was passed by initiative in 2014, there have been two high profile multiple murders in the past year that weren’t prevented. A 19-year-old who passed a background check committed one of those crimes. A suspect who apparently used a-.22-caliber rifle that he took without permission from his stepfather allegedly committed the other.
Revenge Must Be Cold, But Tacos Gotta Be Hot
Houston police are probably still scratching their heads over this one, and we’re talking about a profession that includes dealing with just about every strangeness one can imagine.
KTRK News, the local ABC affiliate, reported a shooting incident that started over a cold taco. The woman and her boyfriend were at a taco truck at about 2 a.m. She got upset because her taco was cold and the guy in the truck wouldn’t reheat it.
The boyfriend reportedly tried to calm her down and she whipped out a pistol. Next thing you know, he’s been plugged.
Alas, there was no surveillance video to show what happened. Otherwise, you would probably have seen it already on YouTube.
The moral of this story is a no-brainer. Don’t take your girlfriend for tacos to an outdoors taco stand at 2 a.m. Food gets cold and tempers get hot.
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