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Next Member Meetings:
Monday, July 25th @ Eisenhower Rec Center & Wednesday, August 3rd @ Savannah Center
Topic: Hi Standard & Magnum Research Firearms
There will not be a seminar on Wednesday, June 15th. The next seminar will be on Wednesday, July 20th. The topic will be "Email: Easy & Cheap" presented by MMD Computers.
Since the club's primary means of communicating with members is email, and 40% of the emails sent are never read, we thought it might be mutually beneficial to conduct a session just to show some simple & inexpensive ways to utilize email for communicating. You do not even need to buy a PC!
So, what about the peaceful Muslims?
The Assault Weapons Ban Is A Stupid Idea Pushed By Stupid People
According to FBI statistics, you are far more likely to be beaten to death by someone's fists than you are to be killed with a rifle.
by Sean Davis
It happens like clock work: as soon as there’s a mere whisper of a terrorist attack or a mass shooting, the usual suspects kick in to high gear. Their destination is always the same: a faraway land where a so-called assault weapons ban magically eliminates not only guns but also prevents guns from walking of their own volition, without need of human agency, into crowded places and killing people.
The reaction after the terrorist attack in Orlando, in which a radical Islamist who pledged allegiance to ISIS murdered at least 49 people in a packed night club, was as predictable as it was pathetic.
Set aside for the moment the fact that no automatic weapons were used in the Orlando terrorist attack (an automatic weapon is one for which a single trigger pull will fire multiple bullets), and that it is literally impossible for a semi-automatic weapon to fire 700 rounds per minute. Nor, to my knowledge, have automatic weapons ever been used in a mass shooting in the modern era.
When silly people like Seth MacFarlane and Susan Sarandon say they want to ban “automatic weapons,” what they mean is that they want to ban guns that look scary. They don’t understand that you can’t walk into a gun store and walk out with a military-style assault weapon (one that can fire multiple rounds with a single trigger pull). That’s because 1) most gun dealers don’t carry the military version of the scary looking gun, 2) you have to jump through an obscene number of hoops with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to even obtain a tax stamp that says you may purchase such a weapon (a process that takes months, if not years), and 3) the actual versions of rifles used by the military are really expensive and unaffordable for the vast majority of prospective gun owners.
What you can buy from your local gun dealer, after that licensed gun dealer has confirmed that you passed a federal background check (yep, that’s required by existing law), is a semi-automatic rifle. And now, a bunch of gun controllers who don’t understand the slightest thing about guns have decided that rifle needs to be banned. Not because it’s more deadly than a typical hunting rifle (it’s absolutely not), but because it looks scarier.
But before we dive into whether the assault weapons ban was merely dumb, or if it was monumentally stupid and counterproductive, it’s important to define what the previous federal ban covered and how it defined an “assault weapon.” The 1994 assault weapons law banned semi-automatic rifles only if they had any two of the following five features in addition to a detachable magazine: a collapsible stock, a pistol grip, a bayonet mount, a flash suppressor, or a grenade launcher.
That’s it. Not one of those cosmetic features has anything whatsoever to do with how or what a gun fires. Note that under the 1994 law, the mere existence of a bayonet lug, not even the bayonet itself, somehow turned a garden-variety rifle into a bloodthirsty killing machine. Guns with fixed stocks? Very safe. But guns where a stock has more than one position? Obviously they’re murder factories. A rifle with both a bayonet lug and a collapsible stock? Perish the thought.
A collapsible stock does not make a rifle more deadly. Nor does a pistol grip. Nor does a bayonet mount. Nor does a flash suppressor. And for heaven’s sake, good luck finding, let alone purchasing, 40mm explosive grenades for your rifle-mounted grenade launcher (and remember: the grenade launcher itself is fine, just as long as you don’t put the ultra-deadly bayonet lug anywhere near it).
The complete unfamiliarity with guns and how they work that led to the inept definitions in the 1994 law was on full display in a now-infamous television interview with Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, a New York congresswoman who backed the so-called assault weapons ban. In the interview, Tucker Carlson asked McCarthy to define “barrel shroud,” a firearm feature regulated by the law. Here’s how she answered:
CARLSON: I read the legislation and it said that it would regulate “barrel shrouds.” What’s a barrel shroud and why should we regulate that?
MCCARTHY:The guns that were chosen back in those days were basically the guns that most gangs and criminals were using to kill our police officers. I’m not saying it was the best bill, but that was they could get out at that particular time.
CARLSON: Ok. Do you know what a barrel shroud is?
MCCARTHY: I actually don’t know what a barrel shroud is. I think it’s the shoulder thing that goes up.”
“The shoulder thing that goes up.” It’s not the “shoulder thing that goes up.” There is no “shoulder thing that goes up.” The “barrel shroud” (a term nobody uses) is simply a hand guard that goes around a barrel. That embarrassing spectacle happened over seven years ago, and yet over that period of time, McCarthy’s fellow gun banners still haven’t seen fit to learn the slightest thing about the objects they wish to regulate.
If the cosmetic features used to define an “assault weapon” in the 1994 law strike you as really stupid ways to define an “assault weapon,” it’s because the 1994 law was a stupid law with stupid definitions written by stupid people. And not only was it a stupid law, it was a stupid law that didn’t even accomplish its stated goal. How do we know? Because today, more than a decade after the law’s expiration, the number of people murdered by rifles is 36 percent lower than it was during the last full year the assault weapons ban was in effect.
The law expired in September of 2004, making 2003 the last full calendar year in which the law was in effect. According to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) crime statistics, 390 people were murdered with rifles in 2003, making rifles the weapon of choice in 2.7 percent of murders that year. But in 2014, more than a decade after these vile weapons of war flooded American streets, the number of rifle murders surely skyrocketed, right?
Not so much. Quite the opposite. In 2014, the most recent year for which detailed FBI data are available, rifles were used in 248 murders. And not only are rifles used in far fewer murders over a decade following the expiration of the 1994 gun ban, they’re also used in a smaller percentage of homicides. In 2003, when the gun ban was in full effect, rifles were used in nearly 3 percent of murders. In 2014, they were used in barely 2 percent.
That’s the exact opposite of what gun banners said should happen. After the assault weapons ban, guns were supposed to flood the streets and just start killing people. Crime was supposed to skyrocket. But that’s not what happened. Yes, Americans bought a ton of rifles after the law expired, but rather than going up, the number of homicides in which rifles were used drastically fell. There were way more guns, but way less crime.
Are you ready for a mind-blowing statistic? In 2014, you were six times more likely to be murdered with a knife than you were with a rifle. Knives were the weapon of choice in 1,567 murders in 2014, according to the FBI. It gets crazier. You were also nearly three times more likely to be killed by someone’s fists or feet than you were to be murdered with a rifle. In 2014, 660 people were murdered with what the FBI calls “personal weapons”–hands, fists, feet–compared to 248 with rifles.
In the United States, knives are more deadly than rifles. So are fists. And feet. This is not my opinion. It is an incontrovertible fact. And it’s a fact that highlights a point that far too many people refuse to acknowledge: the human desire to kill is far more deadly than any weapon. Weapons do not of their own volition and agency decide to kill people. That requires human intervention. Humans hell-bent on death and destruction will get their hands on whatever tools they need to wreak their desired havoc. Restricting the use of those tools by innocent people who only want to protect themselves and their families is delusional madness.
Yet here we are. Rather than blaming individuals and ideologies, the leading lights of American society have decided to demonize inanimate objects. Despite the fact that the terrorist in Orlando was a radical jihadi who pledged allegiance to ISIS, progressives have decided to blame the NRA for what happened. Even though the terrorist was registered to vote as a Democrat, his fellow Democrats have decided that Republicans are the true culprits.
This is apparently how 2016 is going to go. If a boy tells you he’s a girl, then he’s a girl. If an Islamic terrorist who pledges allegiance to ISIS tells you he’s killing for Allah, then he’s probably a Republican with a lifetime NRA membership. After all, Islamic terrorists don’t kill people; peaceful, law-abiding citizens who believe the Second Amendment means what it says kill people.
Collective leftist denial about the existential, radical Islamic threat facing America is not going to prevent Islamic terrorism. Gun bans that ban guns based on nothing more than scary-looking cosmetic features are not going to prevent radical jihadis from murdering innocent people. Pretending that Republicans and the NRA are the real villains is not going to prevent ISIS from killing more Americans. Ignoring the fact that these attacks seem to only happen in gun-free zones won’t prevent violent psychopaths from waltzing into those gun-free zones and gunning down the unarmed civilians who congregate there.
But all those things will make progressives feel better about themselves, and who are you to deny them that right?
Sean Davis is the co-founder of The Federalist
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When will politicians finally recognize that they can’t protect all the possible shooting targets?
Possibly the largest mass public shooting in US history occurred early on Sunday morning, leaving 50 dead. On Friday, also in Orlando, singer Christina Grimmie was murdered after a concert.
Both of these shootings had something in common: They both occurred in places where private citizens were banned from carrying permitted concealed handguns.
With the exception of Donald Trump, over the last few days politicians have talked about everything but gun-free zones.
Hillary Clinton and President Obama have been talking background checks on the private transfers of guns or banning people who are on the “no-fly lists” from buying guns.
But not one of the mass shootings since at least 2000, including Sunday’s, would’ve been stopped by these laws. Nor would renewing the federal “assault weapons” ban solve the problem; even research paid for by Bill Clinton’s administration found no evidence the ban reduced any type of crime.
Just a couple of months ago, a young ISIS sympathizer planned a shooting at one of the largest churches in Detroit. An FBI wire recorded him explaining why he had picked the church as a target: “It’s easy, and a lot of people go there. Plus people are not allowed to carry guns in church. Plus it would make the news.”
Police are probably the single most important factor in stopping crime, but stopping a mass public shooting is an extremely dangerous proposition for officers and security guards alike. Attackers will generally first shoot any uniformed guards or officers who are present. During the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris last year, the first person killed was the guard who was protecting the magazine’s offices.
Being able to choose the time and place of the attack gives terrorists a major strategic advantage. Last year, France learned that the hard way. In a city of 2.3 million people, there are simply too many possible targets for the police and military to protect. Parisians could take cellphone videos of terrorists just 12 yards away, but could do nothing but watch the slaughter. In the United States, we have about 628,000 police to protect 320 million Americans.
PoliceOne, a private organization with 450,000 members (380,000 full-time active law enforcement and 70,000 retired), polled its members in 2013 shortly after the Newtown, Conn., massacre. Eighty percent of respondents said allowing legally armed citizens to carry guns in places such as Newtown and Aurora would have reduced the number of casualties. Another 6 percent thought the presence of legally armed civilians would “likely” have prevented the innocent casualties altogether.
According to police and prosecutors, there have been dozens of cases of permit holders clearly stopping what would have been mass public shootings. It’s understandable these killers avoid places where they can’t kill a large number of people.
Research I have conducted with economist Bill Landes looked at 13 different types of gun-control laws. Right-to-carry laws were the only type that made a difference in the rate and severity of these mass public shootings. Such laws are like those that the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against last week, when it determined that California’s citizens didn’t have the right to protect themselves in public with concealed guns. (The open carry of guns is already illegal in California.)
President Obama has said mockingly, “Some here believe that having more guns makes us all safer.” He says we wouldn’t have these mass public shootings if that were true. However, just because there are a lot of guns in the United States doesn’t mean that people always have access to them for protection.
It ought to be common sense — even the most ardent gun-control advocate would never put “Gun-Free Zone” signs on their homes. Let’s finally stop putting them elsewhere.
John R. Lott Jr. is the president of the Crime Prevention Research Center and the author of the forthcoming “War on Guns.”
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