The Obama Socialist Executive Ban on 5.56 Ammunition

March 8th, 2015

ammo

That title is a decent approximation of how inaccurately the current situation has been described to me.  It's 95% untrue.  The proposal at hand is not the result of legislation.  There is no executive order on the matter.  It is not a blanket ban on 5.56.  It only affects one specific loading.

Here's the short explanation.  The 1985 Law Enforcement Officers Protection Act (LEOPA) delegated authority to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) to decide whether certain ammunition could be banned from civilian ownership if it is deemed "armor piercing."  The criteria are quite specific:

A projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper, or depleted uranium; or 

A full jacketed projectile larger than .22 caliber designed and intended for use in a handgun and whose jacket has a weight of more than 25 percent of the total weight of the projectile.

Military M855/SS109 ammunition has long been exempted from that definition by name.  Last month, the ATF decided to change their minds on the matter.  Their report is here [pdf].

The first problem is, they're wrong.  The second problem is, it won't stop them.

SAF Brings Suit against I-594

December 31st, 2014

bloomberg-550x298

The press release is here. The filing itself is here [pdf].

Their argument is that I-594 is unconstitutional because it is too vague, both facially and as applied.

I-594, with its amendments to RCW 9.41 relating to non-commercial transfers of firearms, as well as Defendants’ enforcement of the same, prohibit, substantially interfere with, inhibit access to, and infringe upon the right to possess firearms and thus infringe Plaintiffs’ rights under the Second and Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution as well as the rights in Article I, Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution.

Specific examples of infringement include the …

Undeserved Celebrity

December 23rd, 2014

heF2TCD

Apparently, all it takes to become an "activist" in 2014 is to get a Twitter account and make an insipid YouTube video. In a matter of days, this person has gone from being a selfie-obsessed nobody to an internet celebrity based on this video this video.

(The gun is actually a Crosman C-11 pellet gun, but that is a real charter school.)

Angry gun owners unwittingly fed into her narcissism, and even the CSGV has thrown its hat into the ring. Notice the conciliatory and respectful tone:

This was an audition for Michael Bloomberg's money, and thanks to the outrage, …

Vultures

December 12th, 2014

brady

A group of families, organized by the law firm of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder, is planning to bring a wrongful death suit against Bushmaster Firearms because one of the company's rifles was used in the Sandy Hook shooting. In theory, such a lawsuit would be forbidden by the Protection in Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. In practice, it's not as clear.

A Bushmaster rifle was also used in the 2002 DC Beltway shootings. The Brady Campaign brought suit against them, and the company eventually settled. Doing so set a terrible precedent, and the lawyers smell blood in the …

The Markus Kaarma Case

December 5th, 2014

F7849

Self-defense statutes commonly known as "stand your ground" laws have come under a great deal of scrutiny the last couple of years. Though not a stand your ground case, the George Zimmerman situation was quoted as proof that Florida's law was unfairly biased against minorities. Michael Dunn's attempt to cite the law in his defense made things even worse.

Now we've got a case in Montana that critics are attempting to lump into the same category. The issue at hand doesn't involve stand your ground laws, which generally cover self-defense outside the home. Kaarma is claiming …

No Justice, No Peace

November 24th, 2014

obama_ferguson

That very slogan is a mockery of our system of justice. The protesters demanded a grand jury, and they got it. It turns out the eyewitnesses were unreliable, and the physical evidence shows no criminal activity on Officer Wilson's part. The system did its job.

Many of those calling for an indictment never cared about the process. They simply care about punishment. They want someone to suffer, and they assume that will happen if they get enough people to scream. They believe that public opinion should drive criminal proceedings.

This tendency towards vengeance is the basest of human instincts, and it's exactly what our system …

More on Pistol Braces

November 24th, 2014

fallout_shotgun

I've been over the issue of pistol stabilizing braces before. Attaching one to a pistol is perfectly legal. It is also legal to use it as a shoulder stock, though that's not the intended purpose. The BATFE issued a very specific letter to clarify this.

Black Aces Tactical recently manufactured a shotgun with the brace, and they've been informed that this is impermissible. People are now under the impression that this affects all uses. That is not the case.

The answer is simple and short. In legal terms, a shotgun is not a pistol. They are …

Jay Leno Weasels Out

November 23rd, 2014

The-Tonight-Show-with-Jay-Leno-610x343

Jay Leno was scheduled to speak at the 2015 SHOT show but has cancelled under pressure from gun-control groups. This came from his spokesperson:

When it came to his attention that this was actually a pro-gun lobby show, he immediately cancelled his appearance. He found out that it was not what he was originally told it was, and he decided to cancel.

OK, what else would the National Shooting Sports Foundation be? I find it incomprehensible that he would be ignorant of that, or of what the SHOT Show promotes. He could at least have been honest about it.

The Coalition to Stop …

I-594: Curios and Relics

November 16th, 2014

Winchester_Repeating_Arms_Co._ad_1900

The ATF has long recognized that certain firearms fall into a category known as "curios and relics." As defined, this includes weapons that "are of special interest to collectors by reason of some quality other than is associated with firearms intended for sporting use or as offensive or defensive weapons." Most are firearms over 50 years old, or for which the value is historical rather than functional.

Collectors of curios and relics (C&R) can acquire a Type 3 FFL, which allows them to bypass some of the transfer requirements of the Gun Control Act and Brady Act. To the …

Hollis v. Holder

November 8th, 2014

ATF-620x362

A guy named Jay Aubrey Isaac Hollis has started a crowdfunding campaign. His goal is to bring litigation against Attorney General Holder on the grounds that the National Firearms Act and 1986 Hughes Amendment are unconstitutional.

In short, he submitted a Form 1 to the BATFE for approval to build a machine gun for personal use, even though it's illegal for him to do so. Somewhere along the line, somebody got their wires crossed, and it was approved. The BATFE recognized the error and revoked their approval the same day.

Mr. Hollis seems to think this is his big Mr. Smith Goes to Washington moment, and he's presenting a batch of Hail Mary passes to the Northern District court in Texas. Seriously, this is what he asks for in the opening pages:

overturning Wickard v. Filburn
declaring "unjust taking" under the 5th Amendment because an erroneous approval was reversed
applying strict scrutiny to all matters involving the 2nd Amendment, despite the fact that most Circuit courts have rejected the idea
revisiting the legislative process behind the passage of the Hughes Amendment

This guy is going to crash and burn in oral arguments, and we'll all suffer for it. Whatever you do, don't encourage him.

I-594: A Recipe for Disaster

November 6th, 2014

bloomberg-550x298

It only cost $13 million, but Washington State voters have passed a bill [pdf] mandating "universal" background checks for all transfers of firearms. This is bad law. It will punish those whose only failing was not knowing its stipulations in detail, and it will do nothing to deter crime.

Under the law, a transfer is pretty much any situation in which possession of a gun changes. It doesn't just cover the sale of firearms–a transfer occurs whenever someone besides the registered owner is in possession of the gun. So, "hold my rifle while I tie my shoes" is a transfer. If a background check hasn't been done, with a licensed dealer as the intermediary, both parties commit a gross misdemeanor.

I'm afraid it's going to take a few innocent people getting thrown in jail or losing their right to own guns in Washington before the defects of this law come to light.

On Referendums

November 4th, 2014

ThanksObama-44445

The Republicans are looking to pick up six or more seats in the Senate tonight. Mitch McConnell looks to be winning in Kentucky, and he'll probably replace Harry Reid as majority leader.

Tomorrow morning, the Republicans are going to be basking in optimism and satisfaction. That would be a tremendous mistake. They need to have viable plans in place right now, or they'll be back in the wilderness in two years.

Pundits are calling this election a referendum on the President and his policies. That's not the case. If anything, that would have been the 2010 election. The "take back our country" rhetoric and tricorner hats won Republicans a few seats, but the Tea Party forked the message and turned their narrow majority into a tool for little more than squabbling obstructionism. They seemed to think the public didn't notice.

Next came claims they'd take the White House in 2012. That didn't happen. Presidential candidates bickered among themselves over who was more conservative and did little else. When the dust settled, they were left with Mitt Romney. Tea Party freshmen in the House lost seats. In New York and New Hampshire, they lost their seats back to the Democrats they'd unseated in 2010.

They were left with just enough votes to force one government shutdown and threaten another. They've little else to show for their work.

This year, they seem more focused, but their victory will be transitory at best.

« Previous PageNext Page »