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Old March 2, 2009, 09:55 AM   #1
Leedavisone
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How much 'anti-gun' legislation is there?

I am 59, a gun owner all my life, currently with 18 firearms between myself and my Wife. We are SASS members, we have CCW permits, and I own a company that manufactures a gun related tool. I once joined the NRA (a local shooting range had joining as a requirement), but let it expire after a year, for I was frankly surprised at the push to "protect" our rights, and the vehement denunciation of so many people that were thought to be "anti-gun". It struck me that the NRA was primarily a forum to vent political thoughts, and only secondly a venue for promoting the use of firearms. I have come to THR and the Firing Line often to learn about rifles and pistols and ask questions. But I am incredulous at many of the political pro-gun things I read from so many members. Here is what I am wondering... Has there been any specific legislation in the past 30 years that has actually restricted the rights of individuals to keep and bear arms? I am sure there must be, but I am unknowledgeable about this. I don't mean 'waiting periods', restrictions on criminals, or any reporting paperwork necessary. I mean actual legislation that was enacted into law on a nationwide basis that restricts my use of a weapon. I don't understand how so many people can be against someone like President Obama simply because of one specific political thought. My wife's daughter is virulently anti Obama because he is a Democrat and 'wants abortions', and to hell with his thoughts on anything else, or whether he will be a good man for the job. What brought these thoughts on was a search for Cooper Firearms threads here in FL. I was surprised to see that so many were 'anti' Cooper because Jeff Cooper had donated to the Obama campaign last year. There is even a push to boycott Cooper Arms. All I wanted to find out is if Cooper makes a magazine fed rifle in 25-06... and I get hit by the pro gun mob telling me I should NEVER deal with Cooper firearms. So... can anyone enlighten me about the restrictive legislation that has been actually enacted into law? Thanks...
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Old March 2, 2009, 11:22 AM   #2
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Welcome to the Law & Civil Rights forum of The Firing Line, Leedavisone.

Before this thread gets pointed to the wrong direction, I would admonish everyone that participates, to stick to answering the questions posed by the OP. Rambling political epitaphs are not germane.

The questions can be answered without going too far into politics. Please keep this in mind.
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Old March 2, 2009, 11:56 AM   #3
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1968 everything got serial numbers
1986 ban on new manufacture burst of full auto weapons to civilians.

Basically the second amendment, for the purpose it was written, has been utterly destroyed. It still stands for other purposes such as protecting recreational shooters, but as far as ensuring civilians have the tools at their disposal necessary for waging war against the government, it is destroyed.

Maybe we will have a constitutional convention soon and the Second amendment will be repealed or rewritten. As it stands now there are certainly restrictions on the book which our unconstitutional.
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Old March 2, 2009, 12:08 PM   #4
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The problem with counting "how many" is that it only takes one...
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Old March 2, 2009, 12:27 PM   #5
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And to use peetzakillers line "the problem with counting"...
Magazine capacity... what is any different with one 25 round mag or 3 10 rounders?
Oh yeah 5 more rounds!
Is this "legislation without representation"?
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Old March 2, 2009, 12:47 PM   #6
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I was surprised to see that so many were 'anti' Cooper because Jeff Cooper had donated to the Obama campaign last year.
Jeff Cooper passed away in Sept. 2006. Dan Cooper, the president of Cooper Arms, supported BO.
I have a really hard time seeing Jeff Cooper supporting Obama.
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Old March 2, 2009, 12:49 PM   #7
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1968 everything got serial numbers
1986 ban on new manufacture burst of full auto weapons to civilians.
1989 gave us the import ban.

1993-1994 gave us the 10-year Assault Weapons Ban, which expired in 2004.

This period also gave us the right-to-carry movement. Most states in the Union are now shall-issue for carry permits.

2008 gave us the Heller decision, which at the very least buys us some time.

For better or worse, the 2008 election cycle also brought out tons of people who'd never cared one way or another about the 2nd Amendment until that moment. Those folks seem obsessed with making up for 70 years of lost time by being as loud as possible in every possible venue (*).

We're in a bit of a holding pattern during this administration. I don't see us making any gains on the Federal level, but I don't see us losing anything, either.

(*) A local (city-level) Democratic official wrote an article on funding for a park, and the comments section was immediately flooded with multi-paragraph rants about the AWB and how the Black Helicopters are coming for us all. The comments had nothing to do with the issue at hand, and ironically, the guy in question is an ardent 2A supporter.
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Old March 2, 2009, 05:02 PM   #8
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I mean actual legislation that was enacted into law on a nationwide basis that restricts my use of a weapon.
If the question is strictly limited to laws that restrict the use of a particular weapon that a person already owns, there have not been many. The 1989 Import Ban placed restrictions on "assembling" an assault rifle, so making changes to covered guns that a person already owned became a real pain. The ammunition capacity restrictions in the 1994 Assault Weapon Ban eliminated the new supply of standard capacity magazines for many guns.

Rather than restricting the use of existing weapons, the laws have generally restricted or prohibited the acquisition of new weapons.

Leedavisone, as a SASS member, how would you like it if all handguns were banned? Assume you could keep the sixguns you already have (we have not gotten to confiscation - yet), but that no new handguns could be produced. How long would SASS last if there was a fixed and dwindling number of sixguns? I don't think that SASS would be an attractive activity if it became limited to leverguns and scatterguns.

At any rate, the government doesn't have to stop people from shooting in SASS matches if laws are passed that will eventually result in a lack of guns or ammo to use in SASS matches.
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Old March 2, 2009, 05:41 PM   #9
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I don't understand how so many people can be against someone like President Obama simply because of one specific political thought.
Which "one" specific political thought?

His support of a national ban on licensed concealed carry by civilians? His support of another so-called semi-automatic assault weapon ban? His support of the handgun ban in Washington DC?

That is two out of three that directly affect you. How can anyone support Obama when he has admitted to wanting no CCW and his belief that civilians have no need for handguns?
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Old March 3, 2009, 12:59 AM   #10
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Good post Leedavisone. I tend to agree with you. I think that the current administration has a lot on their plate to deal with (left by the previous "pro-gun" administration) and guns are pretty low on their "to do" list...

But here's my take - no one right is more important than any other. All the rights are equally important. And that transcends the conservative vs liberal banter. I hold all my rights as sacred - and there corresponds a responsibility for each right. When the framers of the Constitution of the United States put together the Bill of Rights, the context was one of emergence from a repressive colonial master. Hence the right to speak freely, to assemble peacefully, to keep and bear arms (and in the context this was the assault weapons of the day), to be secure in ones home, papers and effects, and the list goes on. But nowhere is one right given precedence over any other.

We have to ensure that our right to keep and bear arms - as an assurance that a despotic regime can be overthrown and rightful leadership restored - must be kept along with all the others. I have a problem with any organization that places one right or freedom over others (and I have posted my belief that the NRA and ACLU should open meaningful dialog since they both claim to defend our civil rights).
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Old March 3, 2009, 01:41 AM   #11
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Yes, "the sky is falling" is heard alot lately

And thats because when it wasn't the sky actually did fall a bit.

And a lot depends on your view of what "restricts" your rights. If the government required a background check before you bought a book, would that restrict your right to read? If they limited the number of pages allowed in the book, would that? If they said the book could only be a certain size and color, would that? If importation of foreign printed books was banned, would that keep you from reading?

1934 - National Firearms Act
places severe restrictions and taxes on ownership of fully automatic firearms, sound reducing devices (silencers), rifles and shotguns with short barrels, and pistols with sotcks. The original version of this act as proposed did not include silencers, but did include ALL handguns.
1968 - Gun Control Act (GCA 68)
requires serial numbers on all guns made after 68. Ends direct mail order purchase of firearms. Sets minimum age limits (21 for handgun, 18 for long arm) purchase from dealers. Establishes Dealer recordkeeping and license requirements (form 4473). Requires record logs be kept for ammunition purchase (later recinded), sets legal standards for import of firearms, allowing govt to ban import of guns "not suitable for sporting purposes". Codifies loss of firearms ownership rights for convicted felons, and those involuntarily committed for mental illness. And contains a lot of other things I'm not going to bother to list, but violations of which would sent you to jail.
1986 - Firearm Owner Protection Act (FOPA 86)
removes/recinds sections of GCA 68, to protect innocent violators from jail for mistakes, as opposed to intentional violation of law. Gives gun owners legal protection while traveling through juristictions with restictive laws, while on their way to somewhere else. And, as a last minute amendment, freezes the number of full auto firearms legal for private citizens to own to the individual guns already registered with the BATFE as of May 1986. No new guns may be added.
1994 - Assault Weapons Ban (AWB 94)
This misnamed law actually restricts no assault rifles. What it did was create a new legal definition for semi auto firearms, based on cosmetic features, calling them "assault weapons". Then bans private ownership of new made guns with combinations of these features. Also bans private ownership of new magazines holding more than 10 rounds. All existing guns and magazines are grandfathered, and legal. Bill contains a sunset provision and expires after 10 years (2004).

Those are the major laws restricting our freedom of choice in what we choose to own for firearms. Along the way in recent years, we also get the Brady Bill, which mandates a 5 day (Federal) waiting period for a handgun purchase (no matter what state law said, unless longer than 5 days) Brady Bill passed with provsion to default to an "instant check" for all firearms purchases when available.

Also a ban on "Cop Killer bullets" which, as originally proposed would have banned virtually all centerfire rifle ammuntion. Bill as passed restricts/bans ownership/sale of military armor piercing ammo, and steel jacketed ammo.

And the "Lautenberg Amendment", a law removing the right of firearms ownership from anyone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor, ever, including all those "guilty" of the pleading to a misdemeanor before the law passed. Law does not exempt includes military and law enforcement personell in the pursuit of their duties. result; soldiers and cops who cannot legally even hold (posess) a gun. Many police forced from street to desk duty in order to comply with the law.

There is even more, all this is just off the top of my head, without checking exact details. (anyone, feel free to correct me, or explain further any of the points)

You can still go to a target shoot or hunt like your father did in the 1950s. But you cannot buy, or legally own some of the things he could. And for those things you still can buy and own, you must be investigated, fill out forms, and get government approval that he never did.

1968 was a huge wake up call, and it took until 1986 to undo some of the damage that law did. But we paid with further restictions on some things for the easing of others. 1994 AWB passed by ONE vote, and really, really upset a lot of people. So much so that in that years election the Democrats lost the majority in Congress that they had held for 40 years.

If you do some research into all the laws that have been proposed, up to, and including outright repeal of the 2nd Amendment and confiscation of all priviatly owned guns and or ammuntion, you will see that the main reason these bills have not become law is because of the NRA, and other pro-gun groups lobbying, and motiviating their members to vote, raising the money to be a political power by crying over and over that the sky is falling.

There are well organised, well funded groups and people in politics that are working as hard as they can to see that owning and using guns for sport and protection are as difficult and expensive as they can make them, as a prelude to eventual complete prohibition. Their strategy is to restrict what we can buy first, with the eventual goal of confiscating what we already own.

There are many of us who are single issue voters. For me, the issue is guns. Because that's what I enjoy, and laws about them have a direct, and immediate impact on my enjoyment of life. I may dislike Obama (or any other politician, of any party) because of his stand on other issues, but I will actively oppose/vote against them for their support of "gun control".

And just out of curiosity, where have you been hiding the past 30 some years?
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Old March 3, 2009, 10:57 AM   #12
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You have alot of gun related political issues to catch up on.
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Old March 3, 2009, 08:22 PM   #13
Leedavisone
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Well, I am the original poster, and I have not been 'hiding' by any means, except from the politics, maybe. I have always been curious about the tendency for everyone to tell me that the anti gun nuts "almost did this..", but it never quite happened. And so I am equally curious about actually how much restrictive legislation has actually passed. OK, I feel better informed now, and will continue to not worry much about it all. It strikes me that every one of the laws enacted to restrict firearms is a good one, and ones that I don't have any problem with. I certainly don't mind being subjected to a background check when I buy a gun, and I feel very good that everyone else has to also. I recently sold a half dozen rifles and pistols from my truck at a local flea market, one of them to one of our local cops. So I don't feel 'put upon' by anyone. And yes, I feel comfortable that people can't buy full auto weapons... I feel safer. And I don't intend to overthrow a despotic government (I think we are past that in the US, as of 228 years ago.). I do think that everyone should lighten up a bit though... well, whatever. And I am certainly not going to worry about my SASS shooting. More power to the nra... just leave me alone.
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Old March 3, 2009, 09:25 PM   #14
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I recently sold a half dozen rifles and pistols from my truck at a local flea market, one of them to one of our local cops.
Did you make them undergo a background check before selling to them?

For that matter were you aware that in the late 1970s, the ATF prosecuted Patrick Mulcahey for "engaging in the business of gun dealing" without an FFL for selling just three firearms over a two-year period? They ended up seizing his entire collection (Source: Footnote 118). He was prosecuted under the legislation you just approved of (The 1968 Gun Control Act).

Quote:
And yes, I feel comfortable that people can't buy full auto weapons... I feel safer.
Actually, they can buy full-auto weapons. They just can't buy one made after 1986. Although considering that legally-owned, registered full-auto weapons are used in crime more rarely than nuclear weapons have been used, I don't see how it makes you safer.
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Old March 3, 2009, 10:43 PM   #15
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One point of view is...

If we wait until we are "put upon", if we wait until the law directly and personally affects our chosen part of our shooting hobby, we have already lost.

Enjoy your SASS, and everything else in your life. Sleep well. There are people on watch, on your behalf, as well as their own. Whether there are enough of us to preserve what we still have, only time will tell. But we do what we can, as we can to keep the people who want guns all made illegal from getting what they want.

Before I leave you alone on this subject, I recommend that you read that little poem by Martin Niemoeller.
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Old March 3, 2009, 11:26 PM   #16
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Why are firearms laws good, if they don't reduce crime, but limit the choices peaceable people can make?

I, for one, would have been rather angry if the rifle I wanted to purchase (AR-15) had been made illegal for purchase due to some politicians being afraid of the flash suppressor and bayonet lug on it. The bayonet lug issue doesn't anger me, but since I do about half my shooting practice in low-light conditions, telling me I had to by a new rifle without a flash suppressor would have angered me! Forcing me to buy magazines of less than standard size would also have offended me, since I often practice and compete in courses which would have required me to reload 3 times as often (which increases my time and makes my score less competitive). Thankfully, the '94 AWB expired.

Then, there is the law that prevented me from buying the handgun I wanted to use for competition for almost a year. Yes, I competed on a military shooting team, but could not legally buy a handgun from a dealer. Thank you 1968 GCA! (Sound frustrating?)

I cannot legally buy a new production rifle, like I would be issued (and I do buy into the "practice how you fight" concept). Since the '86 closure of the MG registry, existing rifles of that type are too expenseive for me to own without going into debt.

All of this does not even consider the legislation that was defeated.
...laws that would ban most center-fire rifle ammo
...laws that would give authority for banning common firearms to the AG
Then, there are the quotes from Senators
Quote:
I don't care about crime. I just want to get the guns.
Quote:
Banning guns is an idea whose time has come.
Quote:
As you know, my position is we should ban all handguns, get rid of them, no manufacture, no sale, no importation, no transportation, no possession of a handgun.
Quote:
...the only people who use them [so-called assault weapons] are mass murderers...
Dang, I better go turn myself in! (sarcasm)
...all from those who write our national laws.

Last edited by raimius; March 3, 2009 at 11:45 PM.
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Old March 4, 2009, 12:10 AM   #17
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Leedavisone
You keep on having fun with your guns,just think what would happen if people did not fight for our rights to own guns.Do you really think nothing would change if the NRA or people of like mind did not fight!


"almost did this..", but it never quite happened"

Why the Hell do you think anti gun people dont get what they want.Let me tell you its not because of people like you,its because of the people who fight!!

I dont think old 6 guns should be legal they can kill people and puts me in danger.Just think how many died at the hands of 6 shooters in the good ole west.
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Old March 4, 2009, 12:29 AM   #18
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Leedavisone, I'm glad you feel safe due to our gun laws. Unfortunately for me, when the government is the one keeping me safe, I feel anything but. The government has no duty to keep you safe. They don't do a very good job of it. Just look at Virginia Tech. The government banned guns on campus and then let all of those professors and students down. The government's laws were supposed to keep them safe, yet those victims spent that evening in a morgue. They could have defended themselves if the government had not restricted their right to keep and bear arms, but it happened in the name of public safety. Banning when you can use your arms is the same as denying you the right to own them. This country is built on liberty, and liberty isn't safe. It's the freedom to make the choices you need to make in order to succeed and survive. It's also the freedom to choose not do anything to protect you and your family from harm except rely on others. I just hope for your sake you make the right choice when it counts, to include the proper type of firearm for the situation at hand and choosing to stay where they are close at hand in your home at all times.

(Seriously, nobody remembered gun-free school zones? Come on, people.)
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Old March 5, 2009, 04:53 PM   #19
Leedavisone
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Whew! I am amazed at the twisting of facts on these forums!
"The government has no duty to keep you safe. They don't do a very good job of it. Just look at Virginia Tech. The government banned guns on campus and then let all of those professors and students down. The government's laws were supposed to keep them safe, yet those victims spent that evening in a morgue."
I suppose that means that the government pulled the trigger? Come-on now! Noone can be blamed for the Virginia tragedy but the Shooter. But, the implication is that I am to blame, for being complacent about my 'rights'. So, are we to arm every student and professor? I don't think I would feel safer in that environment.
My point is that I agree with ALL the gun legislation that has been enacted thus far.
"Magazine capacity... what is any different with one 25 round mag or 3 10 rounders? Oh yeah 5 more rounds!" That kinda says it for me... why worry?
I have absolutly no worry about my gun rights. With all you guys on the job, what is the problem? Just don't pressure me to defend your position... I am not that caring.
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Old March 5, 2009, 05:34 PM   #20
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Quote:
I am not that caring.
That's obvious.
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Old March 5, 2009, 09:46 PM   #21
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The OP got his answer, and is "not that caring". Thus, this one is done.
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