Hit them hard

I have been thinking about what would be the best approach to the proposed ban on standard capacity magazines. The MSM is practically foaming at the mouth about this and it hasn’t died down after nearly two weeks.

On one hand I was tempted to just ignore it. There isn’t really enough political support for the ban and it probably is going to fail with all the other things occupying the attention of our lawmakers. I though perhaps we should be focused on things we should be on the offense about. Things like getting rid of the ATF sign-off and tax on suppressors, removing the “sporting use” restrictions, getting rid of some of the stupid import bans, and more constitutional carry. The best defense is a good offense, right?

But if we ignore them might they get enough momentum to get something passed? Should we be commenting on all the newspaper websites and blogs and putting effort into stopping this attack of theirs?

After consulting with some friends and thinking about it more I have decided we can and should play both defense and offense at the same time. It may be possible what the anti-freedom people think of as an opportunity for them can actually be turned into a win for us. I’m not just talking about stopping their attack. I’m talking about inflicting serious damage to their movement.

This Tucson shooting was an incredible morale booster for them. We can and should shame and demoralize them. They have given us an opportunity to expose their deceptions, stupidity, and bigotry. The proper attitude is required but I believe we can use their own actions to push them closer to political extinction.

What I propose is that we write Congress members and Senators and express with as concise and powerful a message as we can. Hit those that want to strip us of our rights hard enough they will stay down this time. If you have the time send a message to ALL Representatives and Senators. If not, at least send it to YOUR Representatives and Senators. We should use this same message on the web via comments wherever we find even half-hearted support for the proposed ban. This message should be sent as “letters to the editor” and used in opinion pieces via normal media outlets.

The following is my proposed message. Modify and use it as you see fit.


If Representative Gifford and 19 others had been run over by a drunk driver there wouldn’t be talk of banning alcohol or automobiles. This country once banned most alcoholic beverages. We suffered the consequences, learned from our mistake, and repealed the laws.

If six people outside a gay bar had been killed and 14 others wounded by a group of 30 homophobes there wouldn’t be talk of banning groups of people greater than 10. That would be a clear violation of the right to association guaranteed by the First Amendment.

Even if a dozen religious fanatics murdered thousands of people in coordinated attacks on our country no serious consideration would be given to banning their religion.

Tens of millions of innocent people have been murdered by students of Karl Marx but no one is advocating a ban on the possession of his books to prevent murderous tyrants.

If most violent crime were committed by people with black skin there wouldn’t be talk of “reasonable restriction” encroaching upon the 13th Amendment which prohibited slavery.

When the cops acquire evidence or a confession illegally, or when they fail to Mirandize somebody they arrest, we let the accused walk, even if he’s certainly guilty. If the guy who walked promptly kills somebody, that doesn’t lead us to reconsider the Fourth and Fifth Amendments. We blame the cops who screwed up the case. Innocent Americans have died because we maintain the rights of the accused.

In this country we have principles which we hold to even if the cost is sometimes great. We value freedom even when some people abuse that freedom. We hold individuals responsible for their actions not the group to which they belong or the freedom itself.

The proposed ban on magazines of greater than 10 rounds is a proven failure. The DOJ studies on the effects of the 1994 to 2004 ban on these magazines showed this. Even after nearly ten years the DOJ sponsored study concluded, “Should it be renewed, the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.” We don’t need to relearn the lessons of prohibition, the war on drugs, and the 1994 “Assault Weapon” ban. We are better students of history than that.

The proposed ban would affect tens of millions of gun owners and ban 100s of millions of magazines. Nearly all police officers in this country carry magazines of greater than 10 rounds. These magazines are used in firearms used for self-defense, hunting, and numerous sports. Ask your local police officers if they carry magazines with capacities of 10 rounds or more. If they find them useful then so do the millions of others who use them for legitimate self-defense. These are not “high capacity magazines” that are being targeted. These are normal capacity magazines.

The proposed ban would apply not only apply to millions of handguns sold every year, the most popular rifles, but even some shotguns. These magazines more than satisfy the “common use” requirement for protection as outlined in the famous 2008 DC v. Heller Supreme Court case. To ban them would not only be pointless from a public safety perspective, it would be overturned by the courts, and subject this country to a long and divisive conflict when we need to focus on other issues of great importance.

Those advocating for the ban are either ignorant of the uselessness of it and how common by these devices are or know and don’t care. Actions advocated by ignorant people cannot be considered anything but foolish. Actions advocated by people who know they are pointless must have an ulterior motive.

People who claim the price of freedom is too high should try suggesting that to their friends and neighbors with dark colored skin or different religious beliefs before suggesting that to the 80 million gun owners in this country. The price we paid and continue to pay for freedom from slavery, religious tolerance, and the right to keep and bear arms was and is great but it is far less than the cost of not having those freedoms.

We have a name for ignorant people with an irrational hatred of people who they neither understand nor want to understand and persist in advocating those beliefs. It’s time we started using that name to describe them.

Just because we tolerate bigots doesn’t mean we approve of them or allow them to legislate their agenda. Don’t let the bigots who hate gun owners infect the rest of the country.


Update: Some minor changes were made upon the recommendations of several readers and advisors. Keep the suggestions coming! Thank you.

Update2: Taking the advice (which I think is sound in this case) of ubu52 I am doing some more editing. See below.


Cases where determined bad guys continued to fight after being shot more than ten times are very common. People who proposed private citizens self-defense is served with ammunition capacity limited to ten rounds need to read the literature and talk to self-defense trainers rather than believe what they see in the movies.

In the famous 1986 FBI Miami shootout eight trained FBI agents fired nearly 100 rounds to stop two bank robbers. One of the robbers continued to fight until hit 12 times. A 10 round restriction on magazine capacity will result in many needless deaths and injuries to innocent people confronted by attackers and unable to adequately defend themselves.

Even if we ignore the obvious need for full capacity magazines it is called a Bill of Rights. Not a Bill of Needs.

If most violent crime were committed by people with black skin there wouldn’t be talk of “reasonable restriction” encroaching upon the 13th Amendment which prohibited slavery.

Tens of millions of innocent people have been murdered by students of Karl Marx but no one is advocating a ban on the possession of his books to prevent murderous tyrants.

Even when 19 religious fanatics murdered thousands of people in coordinated attacks on our country no serious consideration was given to banning their religion.

In this country we have principles which we hold to even if the cost is sometimes great. We value freedom even when some people abuse that freedom. We hold individuals responsible for their actions not the group to which they belong or the freedom itself.

The proposed ban on magazines of greater than 10 rounds is a proven failure. The DOJ studies on the effects of the 1994 to 2004 ban on these magazines showed this. Even after nearly ten years the DOJ sponsored study concluded, “Should it be renewed, the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.” We don’t need to relearn the lessons of prohibition, the war on drugs, and the 1994 “Assault Weapon” ban. We are better students of history than that.

The proposed ban would affect tens of millions of gun owners and ban 100s of millions of magazines. Nearly all police officers in this country carry magazines of greater than 10 rounds. These magazines are used in firearms used for self-defense, hunting, and numerous sports. Ask your local police officers if they carry magazines with capacities of 10 rounds or more. If they find them useful then so do the millions of others who use them for legitimate self-defense. These are not “high capacity magazines” that are being targeted. These are normal capacity magazines.

The proposed ban would apply not only apply to millions of handguns sold every year, the most popular rifles, but even some shotguns. These magazines more than satisfy the “common use” requirement for protection as outlined in the famous 2008 DC v. Heller Supreme Court case. To ban them would not only be pointless from a public safety perspective, it would be overturned by the courts, and subject this country to a long and divisive conflict when we need to focus on other issues of great importance.

Those advocating for the ban are either ignorant of the uselessness of it and how common by these devices are or they know and don’t care. Actions advocated by ignorant people cannot be considered anything but foolish. Actions advocated by people who know they are pointless must have an ulterior motive.

People who claim the price of freedom is too high should try suggesting that to their friends and neighbors with dark colored skin or different religious beliefs before suggesting that to the 80 million gun owners in this country. The price we paid and continue to pay for freedom from slavery, religious tolerance, and the right to keep and bear arms was and is great but it is far less than the cost of not having those freedoms.

We have a name for ignorant people with an irrational hatred of people who they neither understand nor want to understand and persist in advocating those beliefs. It’s time we started using that name to describe them.

Just because we tolerate bigots doesn’t mean we approve of them or allow them to legislate their agenda. Don’t let the bigots who hate gun owners infect the rest of the country.


Update3: I left the message at www.WhiteHouse.gov. The site limits messages to 2500 characters. The version below comes in at 2492 characters.


Cases where determined bad guys continued to fight after being hit more than ten times are very common. People who proposed private citizens self-defense is served with ammunition capacity limited to ten rounds need to read the literature and talk to self-defense trainers rather than believe what they see in the movies.

In the famous 1986 FBI Miami shootout eight trained FBI agents fired nearly 100 rounds to stop two bank robbers. One of the robbers continued to fight until hit 12 times. A 10 round magazine capacity will result in many needless deaths and injuries to innocent people confronted by attackers and unable to adequately defend themselves.

Even if we ignore the obvious need for full capacity magazines it is called a Bill of Rights. Not a Bill of Needs.

If most violent crime were committed by people with black skin there wouldn’t be talk of “reasonable restriction” encroaching upon the 13th Amendment which prohibited slavery.

Even when 19 religious fanatics murdered thousands of people in coordinated attacks on our country no serious consideration was given to banning their religion.

In this country we have principles which we hold to even if the cost is sometimes great. We value freedom even when some people abuse that freedom. We hold individuals responsible for their actions not the group to which they belong or the freedom itself.

The proposed ban on magazines of greater than 10 rounds is a proven failure. The DOJ studies on the effects of the 1994 to 2004 ban on these magazines showed this. Even after nearly ten years the DOJ sponsored study concluded, “Should it be renewed, the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.” We don’t need to relearn the lessons of prohibition, the war on drugs, and the 1994 “Assault Weapon” ban. We are better students of history than that.

Those advocating for the ban are either ignorant of the uselessness of it and how common by these devices are or they know and don’t care. Actions advocated by ignorant people cannot be considered anything but foolish. Actions advocated by people who know they are pointless must have an ulterior motive.

We have a name for ignorant people with hatred of people who they neither understand nor want to understand and persist in advocating those beliefs. It’s time we started using that name to describe them.

Don’t let the bigots who hate gun owners infect the rest of the country.

9 thoughts on “Hit them hard

  1. I’d leave out the “clip” paragraph. To most people, the distinction seems pedantic and arcane, like calling somebody out for ending a sentence with a preposition, or a barista insisting you say “vente” instead of “large”. That stuff turns people off.

    I did think of an additional example of rights coming with a price that we willingly pay, and one that may resonate well with the right audience here: The rights of the accused. When the cops acquire evidence or a confession illegally, or when they fail to Mirandize somebody they arrest, we let the accused walk, even if he’s certainly guilty. If the guy who walked promptly kills somebody, that doesn’t lead us to reconsider the Fourth Amendment. We blame the crooked cops who screwed up the case. It is not an exaggeration to say that innocent Americans have died because we maintain the rights of the accused. It’s a price we pay.

  2. If you are planning to send this to Congress and the Senate in an attempt to “sell” them on your side, this isn’t a very good sales letter. It sounds like something a corporation would send and, as such, probably should have money enclosed with it. Sales letters need to have more of an emotional appeal.

    Also, you start with a lot of superfluous material. It would behoove you to get to the point in the first paragraph.

    Years ago, when I worked as a temp in Florida, I had jobs writing these letters (for corporations) and then as the “gatekeeper” (the one who opens the letter and reads it). As a gatekeeper, 99.99% of the letters weren’t interesting enough to pass on. Many are written by people with “problems” (mental, but you can read that any way you want to) and they claim this, that and the other thing — but they aren’t on target enough (or interesting enough) to pass on. (These were really fascinating temp jobs, by the way.

    Anyway, if you want to get past the gatekeeper and write a good sales letter, you need to include emotional aspects. You need to hit your point of view early on in the letter. You need to write something like “I had a home invasion at my house and I’m so grateful that I had a 30 round magazine in my gun because I was able to shoot 20 people who were trying to attack me.”

    I hope you won’t take this as anything other than constructive criticism. Your letter above reads well and hits a lot of points but it looks like something someone would turn in as a college writing assignment. Nothing from the heart. Nothing compelling to make someone want to pass it on to others to read. It’s “words on a page.”

  3. Ubu, I’m not Joe so my opinion doesn’t count, but I think you’re on to something there–for once, we agree on something–that’s pretty cool.

    Also, Mr. Huffman, here is a rather snow removal story. It relates to an earlier post of yours a while ago, thought I’d pass the link on.

  4. Publius,

    I agree.

    ubu52,

    Thank you for the advice. The first part and the lack of concisness bothered me. That you for articulating it.

    I thought about it a lot this morning and am in the process of rewritting it. ETA–an hour or so.

  5. I’d leave out references to Marx, too obscure. Stick with direct references that can result in voter impact to Congress. Bill of Rights vs Bill of Needs is a good point; make it more concise. FBI shootout is questionable – cops will always be able to get whatever tools they want; how many Joe and Jane Citizens will be in the same spot and need more then 10 rounds? What are handgun sales figures 1994-2011 for semi-autos vs revolvers? What percentage of those semi-autos have capacities greater than 10 rounds? How many can use magazines greater than 10 rounds? Same for rifles. How many citizens will be made overnight felons because they have guns and/or magazines that hold more than 10 rounds? If they are made overnight felons what will government do? Is this more of the dot gov (at all levels) “felonizing” all crimes? What is the capacity of the firearms/magazine industry to replace all 10+ mags with 10 rounders? Comparing gun owners to blacks and religious persecution is good, make it more concise; “19 Muslims killed 3,000 Americans, but there have been no demands to restrict access to Islam.” Something like that. Tam’s mention of 10 round mags showing preference to protect the 11th victim are on point, be concise. Key thing is short, sweet, and hard hitting. Emphasis on short. Unfailingly polite, but strong.

    This is wookie suit territory, and I don’t see a reason not to let them know that, as long as it can be done with extreme politeness and not convey any identifiable threat, save voter organization and massive electoral turnover in 2012. “Do you really want to make struggling single mom Suzy Jones in Pittsburgh into a felon?” That has to be handled carefully because the next thought will be some sort of exemption for “protected classes” like single moms.

  6. This Tucson shooting was an incredible moral booster for them.

    I am pretty sure you want “morale” there — not “moral”. Gives the sentence a very different meaning.

  7. There are two problems with all three of these:

    One, they are far too long and intellectual for anyone claiming the title of “representative.”

    Two, they have words longer than four letters long (for intended audience referenced in reason one).

    Besides that, well said.

  8. Well, it got better but I would have written it differently and I would have left out things you put in.

    You have to remember, the other side has a lot of people who are relatives or victims of gun violence, and they are going to write things like “My sister died,” “My mother was shot,” “I was a victim of the Virginia Tech shooting,” etc. You need to write so it pulls on the heart strings too. The bit about the Miami shooting was fantastic and you should have put in more things like that.

    “Bill of Rights/Bill of Needs” comes across as sarcastic. Calling people ignorant and “bigots” comes across as spiteful/hateful. These type of things give a bad “tone” to your letter. You want to be a positive advocate for your side.

    Also, the previous ban on magazines was a failure because of the way it was written and this ban was written differently because of that. I think any legislator is going to know that.

    I agree with Mr. Twisted on using smaller words. Elected officials are usually great “glad-handers” but not that keen when it comes to academics.

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