Monday, December 31, 2012

How Many Have Left the Ranks?

 from an op-ed in USA Today by Ed Tinsley, former commissioner of Lewis and Clark County in Montana.
I am a proud gun owner and, as such, I call on our nation to stand up and demand that our leaders tackle gun violence in this country. Specifically, the president and Congress must take up the question of whether assault weapons and high-capacity magazines have a place on our streets and in our homes.

This conversation will no doubt raise the hackles of those who disavow even the most minor regulations on their guns or ammunition. They'll say the government is infringing on their rights yet again.

Let them tell that to the grieving parents in Newtown who just buried their children.

The government regulates the amount of shells I can have in my shotgun when hunting waterfowl. It regulates the number of beers I can have at a local microbrewery. It determines whether or not I can talk on my cell phone while operating a 4,000-pound vehicle on public streets.

We need certain laws in place to protect our health, safety and the welfare of our citizens. Why then is it so difficult to reduce the number of assault weapons that pose a threat to Americans everywhere?
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. Yet another, "I'm a gun owner, but..." epistles. It's the same as saying, "I'm a writer, but I support censorship." "I'm a citizen, but I support limiting voting only to whites." And on and on. Control freaks depend on surrender mongers like this.

    1. Greg, reasonable gun control is not the same as censorship or denying blacks the vote. If your argument depends on twisting bullshit like that, we win.

    2. Rights are rights. Your proposals would infringe on the rights of good citizens. And as you well know, I have lots of points in my favor.

    3. Actually mike, if you read the orignal gun control laws, it is like denying blacks the right to vote, as both were pushed by democrats, a fact ignored by most and the first gun laws were aimed strictly at denying freed slaves/blacks the right to keep and bear arms. Unfortunately many are ignorant of reality, bith past and present. Mike Z

  2. Here is something to chew on. We have speed limits on our roads. Our government instituted speed limits to facilitate orderly driving and reduce car crashes. And yet, speed limits do not apply to life-and-death situations. No citizen is ever going to get a speeding ticket for driving 80 mph in a 55 mph zone if the citizen is rushing a dying person to the hospital and the citizen did not crash into anyone.

    The same notion applies to magazine capacities. A "low capacity" magazine (whatever that means) might be fine for many applications. And a "high capacity" magazine (whatever that means) is critical in life-and-death situations. Since "high capacity" magazines are critical in life-and-death situations, they must never be illegal -- just it must never be illegal to drive at high speeds to save a dying person.

    The same line of reasoning applies to semi-automatic firearms versus pump or bolt action firearms.

    One final comment. If semi-automatic and "high capacity" magazines (again, whatever that means) are not necessary, why is it completely okay if law enforcement has them? If law enforcement needs those functions/capabilities to defend human life, so do citizens.

  3. Hunting, unlike self defense and firearms ownership, is a privilege, and not a specifically enumerated right. As such, the government can and does regulate it. The limits imposed on magazine capacity in firearms being used for hunting purposes is a codification of the traditional notions of a "fair chase," a concept rooted in hunting ethics and environmental conservation. If the good Mr. Tinsley had any real knowledge of hunting, he would know the reasons for these limits.

    There are no such analogies with respect to self defense arms; indeed, it is the exact opposite. I would like to have, and I have a right to have the maximum advantage in a defensive situation because I'm already going into it with significant disadvantages. A semiauto firearm with additional rounds is what allows me to make a severely disadvantageous situation slightly less so.