Craig's AP Ban

Submitted by Bill St. Clair on Sat, 28 Feb 2004 13:00:00 GMT
From kaba:
"Reading the newspapers and watching TV news, why you would think that men everywhere were biting dogs, but no dogs anywhere were biting men." -- YHC

# J. Neil Schulman at - Samuel Edward Konkin III, RIP - SEK3 is one libertarian leader of whom I was unaware. He was a friend and teacher for Mr. Schulman. He left his body last Monday, February 23. [smith2004]

One of my last extended conversations with Sam was my using knowledge, logic, and vocabulary I learned from Sam to challenge his premise that there was no reason to consider the existence of God. At the end of that conversation, Sam was left without challenges and said that he thought I'd made a comprehensive case. If my case was correct, then Sam already knows it.

We'll resume that debate whenever Sam and I find ourselves on the same side of that Great Divide ... and wherever that might be, as before, I am confident there will be plenty of dark beer to lubricate the philosophy.

# Author unknown - Information Please - received via email. Tears rolled down my cheeks when I read it. Very relevant to the excerpt I printed from Mr. Schulman's letter above. [tom]

# Mark Oberzil at The Oregonian - Credo of a conservative - Hehe. Asks for your zip code, date of birth, and sex before allowing you to read the article. I lied. [lrtdiscuss]

# Donald J. Hagen - The Satirical Political Beliefs Assessment Test: A Humorous Political Party Quiz to Test If You're an Archconservative, Leftwing Wacko, Antigovernment Libertine or a Commie Sympathizer - Not really a test, but entertaining, though too long for me to read all of it.

What's your interpretation of these words from the second amendment of the U.S. Constitution, "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed"?

CONSERVATIVE: The second amendment was established at a time when the average citizen owned a firearm comparable to the weapon used by the average soldier. These weapons were virtually identical in terms of technological advancement, and firepower. Therefore, citizens today have the right to own the same rifles that are currently issued to U.S. Army infantrymen.

This means all those gun control laws banning fully automatic assault rifles with fixed bayonets are totally unconstitutional!!!

LIBERAL: The second amendment means that the only arms citizens have a right to own are the actual flintlocks and muzzle loading muskets used by soldiers during the Revolutionary War, but only if those guns are retrofitted with trigger locks, and other modern safety devices.

LIBERTARIAN: Consider the circumstances under which the second amendment was written. America had just fought a war for its freedom, and its people had a deeply rooted visceral distrust of despots.

Clearly, "the security of a free State" that the people's right to bear arms is necessary to insure, means that if, perish the thought, America ever became an un-free state, the citizens would have within their means, the capacity to carrying out a successful rebellion. The second amendment is an insurance policy, and another shining example of one of those checks and balances that were so popular with the framers of the Constitution.

Therefore, the second amendment means that citizens have the right to personally own even the most sophisticated military hardware. Because until the firepower possessed by all the citizens as a whole, equals or exceeds the firepower possessed by all branches of the U.S. Military, our freedoms will forever remain under a cloud of jeopardy.

COMMUNIST: The second amendment means citizens have a right to bear arms while serving in the military.

# Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership - Bullets to Save Ballots - an essay contest to celebrate the sixty-eighth anniversary of the Battle of Athens (Tennessee). [jpfo]

Submission guidelines:

Topic: How would today's America be different if politicians feared citizens, rather than citizens fearing their government?

Length: Between 1,000 and 2,000 words

Deadline: All essays must be received by June 17, 2004

Judging: Essays will be judged for content and style by a panel including JPFO staffers and guest judges

Prizes will be announced on July 31, 2004 in time for the anniversary of the Battle of Athens

# New York Times Editorial - Down and Dirty in the Gun Debate BugMeNot - typical Times victim-disarmament rhetoric. I sent the following (typical crazy gun nut rhetoric): [scopeny]

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2004 10:54:13 -0500
From: "Bill St. Clair" <>
Subject: Letter to the editor

On February 27, a Times editorial bemoaned President Bush's support of S.1805, the "Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act", and his waking up to the foolishness of renewing the ban on certain ugly-looking semi-automatic rifles with big-enough magazines and of disallowing individuals to trade their possessions at gun shows. Only by lying with language can Mr. Bush's position on these issues be made to look wrong.

S.1805 doesn't give gun makers and dealers immunity from lawsuits. It protects them from baseless filings by cities and towns, attempting to hold them responsible for criminal misuse of the self-defense tools they make and sell. Nearly all of these lawsuits have been thrown out, but they're expensive to defend against, so the gun industry, being small, needs some protection.

My homeland defense rifle is not an "assault weapon." Stop your name-calling.

# "Snake" Bowman at - Honor, Racism, Service Rifles & "Assault Weapons": One Black Cop's View - a message from a cop to other cops: if you enforce gun control, you "should not be allowed the honor of public service as a sworn peace officer of the law". Bravo! [stanleyscoop]

# Ted Kennedy in the U.S. Senate - Amendment No. 2619 - the link goes to the February 27, 2004 page of the Congressional record. From there you need to click on the link at "7 . PROTECTION OF LAWFUL COMMERCE IN ARMS ACT--MOTION TO PROCEED", then "Page: S1634". Or, if your browser does in-line PDF, you can go right to Page S1634. The text of Kennedy's proposed amendment would not cover standard rifle rounds, only rounds "designed or marketed as having armor piercing capability". But, unlike the current law, which forbids the sale of armor-piercing ammunition, this forbids the sale of armor-piercing projectiles. Mr. Kennedy's discussion on the issue, however, during part of which GeekWithA.45 said that he was "actually frothing at the mouth", shows a complete misunderstanding. Any actual rifle bullet fired from a rifle (to distinguish from pistol-caliber carbines) will pierce soft body armor. Shotgun slugs don't pierce soft armor, but they do thread it through the wearer, making the armor pretty useless. So what Mr. Kennedy wants, though not what his amendment says, can only be accomplished by banning all hunting rifle ammo and shotgun slugs. Mr. Craig sets him straight on page S1638, though he apparently didn't read the amendment:

I think we have all heard the Senator from Massachusetts very clearly. He said he wants to ban assault weapons and rifle ammunition. What he didn't say, or what he will not say, is that the standards he establishes in his legislation, performance-based standards, ban what is currently on-the-shelf hunting ammunition. Does the hunting ammunition in a high-powered rifle have the ability to penetrate soft body armor? Yes, it does.

Does it have the ability to penetrate other soft armor? Yes, it does. Is it used for that purpose? No. It is rarely ever found used for that purpose.

We have a choice. Clearly it is against the law when it is used for that purpose and we all know that and we ought to go at those people who use legitimate firearms in illegal ways instead of trying to eliminate the firearm or, in this case, the ammunition. But, of course, we know, and all of America's hunters know, they could have a 30.06 in their gun safe, they could have a 30.30 in their gun safe, they could have a .308 in their gun safe, they could have a .270 in their gun safe, and if they didn't have the ammunition for it, it would be a marvelous historic relic of America's past. Is that what the Senator from Massachusetts wants?

He says not. But we all know what performance-based standards do. When you establish a band through that, that is what you accomplish. The fact is, virtually all hunting and target rifle ammunition is capable of penetrating soft body armor. That is a reality. So by his definition does that go off the market? I believe it does. That is why I think it is unnecessary. That is why the President of the Fraternal Order of Police said the Kennedy amendment is to kill the underlying amendment or to make it dramatically of less value, and that he and 311,000 members of the Fraternal Order of Police disagree.

# Angel Shamaya at - NRA Director Sen. Larry Craig's Ammunition Ban Amendment - Angel went ballistic over this, but my analysis shows that Mr. Craig didn't really change much with his amendment. KABA discussion here. My analysis is titled Senate Amendment 2625 vs. Current Law. I sent the following email, including a copy of the HTML from my analysis page: [kaba]

From: "Bill St. Clair" <>


I think you have misunderstood the affect of Senator Craig's armor piercing ammunition amendment to S.1805. The following is ready-to-post HTML containing a side-by-side comparison of the amendment and current federal law. They are virtually identical, except that Craig's amendment increases penalties for possessing or using armor piercing ammunition during "any crime of violence or drug trafficking crime". It also directs the attorney general to conduct a study. It does NOT change the definition of armor piercing ammunition which is defined to apply only to handgun ammo.

Most of the amendment is a simple rewording of the existing law. I'm not sure why he would do this, but maybe he wanted something that was similar to Kennedy's amendment (which I haven't read [actually, I did read it, but I forgot that I had done so when I wrote this]), without really changing anything, so that people who like what Kennedy was trying to do but didn't take the time to look up 18 USC 921 or 922 would think the Craig amendment was equivalent. That would be gloriously sneaky, eh?

The HTML below is on the web at

Thank you for your incredible daily defense of our right to keep and bear arms.


-Bill St. Clair
Angel posted a partial retraction, including a link to my analysis. He makes a good point about the evil that still remains in this proposed legislation:
If we're going to be wrong, it's good to be wrong in our side's favor. And, for the record, we'd be happy to find that amending unconstitutional federal ammunition law with more restrictions and penalties doesn't in any way come back to bite us.

However, I stand by my original concerns over Sen. Craig's initial statements, given by him as he was introducing his AP ammo amendment. It is my opinion that rather than trying to amend bad law, Sen. Craig should be trying to repeal it. Furthermore, I still oppose this Craig-Frist amendment. Murder is murder -- whether it be with a gun, a knife or your bare hands. Murder by AP ammo is no worse than murder by any other ammo. Demonizing one type of ammo over another is as wrong as demonizing one type of gun over another. An extra 15 years imprisonment over the type of ammo one uses to commit a violent crime is stupid, and surely unconstitutional if we stick to original intent.

# NRA-ILA - Debate On Lawsuit Preemption Underway -- Amendments To Follow With Final Vote Next Week - A pretty good summary of the Senate debate on S.1805 over the last three days. [scopeny]

Using the bully pulpit of the White House, President Bush offered the following statement highlighting his support for the lawsuit bill without any anti-gun amendments: "The Administration strongly supports Senate passage of S. 1805. The Administration urges the Senate to pass a clean bill, in order to ensure enactment of the legislation this year. Any amendment that would delay enactment of the bill beyond this year is unacceptable. The manufacturer or seller of a legal, non-defective product should not be held liable for the criminal or unlawful misuse of that product by others. The possibility of imposing liability on an entire industry for harm that is solely caused by others is an abuse of the legal system, erodes public confidence in our Nation`s laws, threatens the diminution of a basic constitutional right and civil liberty, sets a poor precedent for other lawful industries, will cause a loss of jobs, and burdens interstate and foreign commerce. S. 1805 would help curb frivolous litigation against a lawful American industry and the thousands of workers it employs and would help prevent abuse of the legal system. At the same time, the legislation would carefully preserve the right of individuals to have their day in court with civil liability actions. These civil actions are enumerated in the bill and respect the traditional role of the States in our Federal system with regard to such actions."

# Miles Fortis & A K Church at Gunblast - Buffalo Bore's Heavy .357 Magnum - 180 grains at 1500 fps from a handgun! That's more energy and almost the efficacy of a standard .44 Magnum load. And a carbine gets over 1800 fps. At a dollar a round, it ain't cheap, but a .357 magnum load that'll make a bear take notice could be useful to some. Buffalo Bore's Heavy .357 Magnum section lists some other loadings and has muzzle velocity figures for a variety of barrel lengths. [gunblast]

The Buffalo Bore heavy .357 is high quality, high performance ammo. We were highly impressed by the velocities (exceeding claims, even out of a handgun), the accuracy (far more than needed for close in bear defense) and cleanliness of the cartridges. It should be born in mind that this ammunition is for modern guns in fine mechanical order, and handgun shooters should be prepared for a new class of .357 recoil.

Add comment Edit post Add post