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Old December 27, 2012, 06:35 AM   #1
TheNatureBoy
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Clinton Era/Assault Weapons Ban Question.

No sarcasm intended. Not trying to make a point. How effective was the ban on assault weapons and high cap mags during the Clinton era? Just curious.
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Old December 27, 2012, 06:48 AM   #2
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The governmental entities designated to determine effectiveness observed no demonstrable impact on the crime rate, nothing to support an increase or reduction in crime apart from trends predating the AWB.

I could grab some sources off Google, but I'm on my phone and feelin' lazy.
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Old December 27, 2012, 09:34 AM   #3
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Quote:
How effective was the ban on assault weapons and high cap mags during the Clinton era?
Effective on/against what?

Crime? No
Murder rates? No
Shooting sprees? Nope

Drove prices up considerably though.
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Old December 27, 2012, 09:55 AM   #4
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There was no tangible difference. Violent crime in this country reached a peak in the late 1980's, and it began a downward trend in 1991. That trend continued to 2011.

The AWB ran from 1994-2004. Even many supporters admitted that there was no measurable decline attributable to it. What's more, crime continued to decline after it expired.
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Old December 27, 2012, 09:57 AM   #5
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Columbine happened during this time.
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Old December 27, 2012, 10:11 AM   #6
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So did the Wakefield shooting and the Mark Barton murders. The trouble is, those events don't prove much either way.

Rhetorically, the burden of proof should be on those supporting the ban, and they've never been able to provide that without heavily massaging cherry-picked statistics from sympathetic authors. Even then, the "proof" is tenuous at best.
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Old December 27, 2012, 11:03 AM   #7
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https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/173405.pdf

This is or was the big study on impact. Basically, the AWB had no useful impact on crime rates.

I heard it presented at a criminology meeting.

The reason for the failure was seen as:

1. Not enough time for an effect
2. Existing stocks of such weapons and accessories meet the demand of many
3. Substitution of weapons of equal efficacy (What no flash thingee on the end?) made cosmetic ban stupid.

We conclude bans are foolish. Antis conclude that much more draconian measures are needed.
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Old December 27, 2012, 11:03 AM   #8
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For some unexplained reason they couldn't get the criminals to obey the new law...I know...that's just crazy!
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Old December 27, 2012, 08:11 PM   #9
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After the ban was in effect you could buy the same guns as before the ban. The law only effected some cosmetic parts of the guns.

It was a waste of political capital by Clinton and the Democrats.
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Old December 27, 2012, 10:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzcook
After the ban was in effect you could buy the same guns as before the ban. The law only effected some cosmetic parts of the guns.

It was a waste of political capital by Clinton and the Democrats.
You don't understand. The ban was an excellent piece of legislation, but those eeeevillll gun manufacturers took advantage of loopholes in the law and actually built guns that complied with the law completely but still launched projectiles.

It was all the fault of those eeeevilll gun makers, don't you see? If they hadn't so callously exploited the loopholes the ban would have worked.
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Old December 28, 2012, 07:44 PM   #11
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I haven't seen any credible evidence that it had any effect on reducing any type of crime.
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Old December 28, 2012, 08:14 PM   #12
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Stats & studies; Sen Feinstein(D-CA)....

Sen Feinstein's press release/website lists a few research reports & stats about the 1994 Clinton Era crime bill.
I'd answer most anti-gun supporters with the basic facts that violent crime has gone DOWN overall & even though firearms across the US are sold in record #s, less violent crimes occur with armed citizens(lawful gun owners) & license holders.
As most US law enforcement officials know(but avoid telling the public or media), most gun deaths/homicides are; " red on red" or a criminal(bad guy) murdering another criminal(bad guy).
LE should spend more time & effort to enforce the gun laws already out there. Wayne LaPierre makes this point on the main NRA website(stand your ground article).

Cops & prosecutors should go after the real bad guys(terrorists, gang members, sex offenders, illegal aliens in violent crime, etc).

Clyde
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Old December 31, 2012, 06:18 PM   #13
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one thing that perturbed me about President GW Bush is that he succumbed to political correctness and said he'd sign an extension of the assault weapons ban if it came to his desk, knowing full well it wouldn't. He should have been a conservative leader and explained why the existing assault weapons ban was a farce and unconstitutional, and he would not violate the constitution to score political points with the left by signing a new one. I was very disappointed in his actions in that regard.
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Old December 31, 2012, 06:24 PM   #14
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If we look at stats for a number of years including the 94-04 era criminals don't use assault weapons to commit crimes as a rule.

How could the ban have a impact if these weapons are not used in the vast majority of firearm related crimes?
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Old January 1, 2013, 11:27 AM   #15
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We don't want to get too political but for history's sake, Mitt said also at the time that he supported an AWB because Bush did.
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Old January 1, 2013, 03:33 PM   #16
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Spot on USAF. My sentiment exactly.
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Old January 1, 2013, 04:22 PM   #17
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Quote:
We don't want to get too political but for history's sake, Mitt said also at the time that he supported an AWB because Bush did.
And maybe that's why people didn't view Mitt as a good leader, even though he may have had great business smarts to run a corporation. I'm not saying that Mitt WASN'T a good leader, it's just that some of his political "adventures" showed him to be more of a go-along-to-get-along politician, rather than an exceptional leader who could convince people to follow him, even if the path was not all that clear. To keep this gun related, his being governor of Massachusetts, where gun control is widely accepted by the majority of citizens, hurt him with national voters who tend to be more conservative and view gun control more as people control than crime control.
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Old January 1, 2013, 04:36 PM   #18
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USAF...: "To keep this gun related, his being governor of Massachusetts, where gun control is widely accepted by the majority of citizens, hurt him with national voters who tend to be more conservative and view gun control more as people control than crime control."

That may be true, but they couldn't see the forest for the trees. Look what we ended up with!
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Old January 1, 2013, 05:01 PM   #19
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That may be true, but they couldn't see the forest for the trees. Look what we ended up with!
I totally agree. As a matter of fact, we have someone in power who's plan appears to be the chopping down of the existing trees in the forest in order to plant trees more to his own liking. You can almost bet that there won't be any new trees which are traditionally used to make beautiful gun stocks, such as Walnut. And with black plastic stocks on guns being frowned upon as being "too scary looking", what will we be left with for beautiful looking gun stock materials? I guess we could go to Nylon, as in Remington's Nylon 66. My uncle has one of those. Not too bad looking for a "synthetic stock", but not the same as a beautiful piece of hardwood furniture.
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Old January 2, 2013, 09:59 PM   #20
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Quote:
How effective was the ban on assault weapons and high cap mags during the Clinton era? Just curious.
It was very effective.

It just didn't have any effect on violent crime. ONe has to wonder if it was ever intended to....

One should also look back at what didn't get in the law, but was part of the original proposals.

Allowing confiscation/siezure of assets (money) and property from any one under investigation of a crime.

Hiring Hong Kong police to come to the US and serve as agents of the US Govt to sieze weapons (the idea being foreign police wouldn't balk at order to take guns from US citizens, while US police might).

Funding for "midnight basketball" for inner city youth (apparently the idea being that since they were going to be on the streets anyway, give them something "constructive" to do?)

There are alot of other, even worse proposals that were intended to be included, but (relatively) cooler heads in the anti movement prevailed.

Now, lets look at some of the things that the 94 AWB did do, effectively...

Created artificial market conditions, based solely on the banned features...
Pre-ban guns got rediculously more expensive, as supply was fixed (although large) and demand skyrocketed. (I, personally, sold a $450 AR clone for $900, and still consider it a good deal, for me...)

Made "large capacity" magazines (and for many of them that term is pure hogwash, as for certain firearms, 17rnds or 20, or 30 rnds was the standard capacity magazine) double, then triple, and then go up even more, in price.
(I saw $14.95 Ruger 10/22 "hi cap" mags go for as much as $75 at the peak of the panic)

Another "effect" of the mag capacity restrictions was one the Anti's never even thought of. And that was firearms makers actually following their demands. And the market response. And it went something like this...

"Sorry, the nanny state says you can't buy pistols with anything over a 10 rnd mag. Ok. We'll make 10 rnd mags to fit you existing 13,15,17, etc guns. And, since there is no point in making a gun that can hold 17 in the mag, we won't make many of them. What we will make is a smaller, more easily concealable gun that holds 10rnds....

Prior to the AWB, compact versions of service pistols were a fairly small segment of the market. After, they became dominant, for a while. And one thing the antis hate is more easily concealable weapons, but they passed a law that had the effect of putting millions more of these exact guns "on the street".

And, of course the biggest effect of the 94 AWB was to create a HUGE demand for even the "neutered" legal guns (which in no way were any less effecive or efficient than the pre ban guns with "evil" cosmetic features).

We do lots of stupid things, all on our own, but one thing Americans, as a group, dislike is being dictated to. Even when it's in our best interest. Especially when it's in our best interest only in the eyes of an elite minority!

The 94 AWB was also hugely effective at one other thing. It ticked off a lot of people who had previously not been very involved in the political process. It cost the Democrats their majority in Congress, which they had held for 40 years. The media went to great lengths to claim that this loss was due to the Republican "Contract with America", but the Democrats knew the truth, and in their own private discussions were quite open with each other about how it was their support for gun contol, and the AWB specifically that cost them their power in Congress.

And, they learned the lesson pretty well. Two lessons, actually. First, don't beat the drum for gun control before an election, no matter how much you want to....

And second, NEVER pass a gun control bill the summer before an election. Give the gun owners time to forget....

Some of us don't forget, and will never forgive, either....
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Old January 3, 2013, 09:12 AM   #21
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to tag on to 44Amp's post, another thing democrats got religion about was to look for candidates to run for national elections in the red states and some purple states who were more "pro" gun rights. That took gun control off the table in those states elections and allowed the democrats to gain more seats in Congress. Howard Dean, who was the DNC chairman, I believe, figured it out. He stated something to the effect of "democrats need to start appealing to more southern voters and those from more rural western states. These are the people who drive pickup trucks sporting NRA stickers". He was right and his plan worked as more democrats won elections in those states. However, they are still more "pro" when it comes to gun rights and that creates problems for the democrats who are from the "anti" side. They can't get their own party members to support them when it comes to more gun control. At least not up to this point. Newtown and Aurora have provided them some political cover, at least temporarily.
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