Study: Background checks effective, ‘assault weapon’ bans ineffective, at curbing gun violence
A study by Boston University researchers published March 10 in the British medical journal Lancet examined 25 gun laws in the United States and singled out three they claim statistically fostered significant declines in suicides, homicides and fatal accidental shootings—as well as nine laws touted by gun control zealots that, contrary to well-accepted rhetoric, not only fail to prevent gun violence, but actually induce it.
The three measures the study linked to substantial drops in firearms-related deaths were:
—universal background checks for firearms sales;
—background checks on those buying ammunition;
—a requirement that gun owners get their firearms microchipped or “fingerprinted” for identification purposes.
If all three laws were in force nationwide, according to the study, the number of U.S. gun deaths—31,672 in 2010—might decline by as much as 90 percent.
Universal background checks for all firearms purchases are required in California and Rhode Island, while Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania mandate background checks when buying handguns. Only Illinois, Massachusetts, and New Jersey require purchasers of ammunition have a permit to do so.
Retiring registries that identify the ballistic fingerprint of every newly sold gun is only law in Maryland and New York. California has adopted a similar measure, but legal challenges have delayed implementation.
Among the gun laws on states’ books that are ineffective and, according to the study, “were associated with increases in gun deaths” include:
—bans or restrictions on semi-automatic firearms, described by the politically contrived term, “assault weapons”;
—limits on the number of firearms a customer could purchase;
—laws requiring locking devices on firearms available for sale.
For more, go to:
Gun control lobby making noise over Hearing Protection Act
It’s taken nearly five months but the gun control lobby has apparently caught wind that the Hearing Protection Act, a bipartisan bill currently being considered by two House committees, would remove firearm suppressors from National Firearms Act regulation and they’re spiraling into hissy-fit hysterics.
In early March, a glut of alleged news articles suddenly flooded the media, mocking the proposal as nothing more than the “arms industry” trying to sell a product to bucktoothed hillbillies that will make them feel like James Bond.
Typical of the nuanced onslaught is Reuters’ Andy Sullivan’s article, “Not just for hitmen.”
Nothing could be further from the truth. Suppressors aren’t silencers unless you can’t hear a jackhammer. A 10-year study by Western Criminology Review found suppressors were involved in less than 75,000 federal criminal cases filed each year. Few, if any, are ever involved in street-level gun violence.
It’s all about protecting the hearing of shooters and hunters. Nothing more, nothing less.
More than a dozen states have legalized suppressors for hunting since 2011. The number of suppressors registered with the U.S. government more than doubled to 792,282 in February 2015 from 360,534 in March 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Right now, those wishing to buy a suppressor must pay a $200 fee, submit fingerprints and a photograph, and secure the approval of their local police chief. Approval by ATF typically takes four to nine months. Under the guidelines of the proposal, federal law would treat them as firearms which would allow suppressors to transfer through regular federal firearms license holders.
The act has 52 sponsors and really doesn’t have any opposition because it makes sense—until, that is, the gun control lobby muddies the water with hysterics about James Bond and hitmen.
“Throughout the endless onslaught of anti-gun proposals and executive orders, the Hearing Protection Act has been one of the few shining lights for the sportsmen’s community,” American Suppressor Association President Knox Williams told Guns.com on Thursday. “We should be afforded every opportunity to make our favorite pastimes safer. The HPA does just that, by helping hunters and recreational shooters protect their hearing while in the field or at the range.”
For more, go to:
California legislators ponder proposed ‘Firearm Research Center’
California lawmakers are considering establishing a firearm violence research center at the University of California “to design better gun policies, both in California and nationwide, while protecting the rights of gun owners.”
California State Sen. Lois Wolk (D-Davis) in February introduced a bill to establish a firearm research center at one of the 10 UC campuses.
Wolk told the Associated Press that lawful gun owners have nothing to fear from the research center proposal. “No one has suggested that we ban cars, but research has shown us that you can make them safer,” she told the AP. “We could ban cars and thereby have no fatalities ever from cars. But that’s not going to happen, and that’s not going to happen with guns either.”
If approved, the state would provide $5 million in “seed money” over the proposed center’s first five years in anticipation that non-profit foundations will eventually finance the research.
The bill will get its first hearing March 16 before the Senate Education Committee.
The National Rifle Association opposes the bill. NRA spokesperson Amy Hunter said in a press release that the measure is intended to push gun control. “We have no reason to believe that this is going to be research that’s worthwhile,” she said.
For more, go to:
IN THE COURTS
Pennsylvania high court scraps preemption law because adoption process was ’unconstitutional’
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on March 9 unanimously declared unconstitutional a 2014 law that allows residents and groups to sue municipalities that adopt more restrictive gun laws than those imposed by the state.
The court ruled 7-0 that the law violated the state’s Constitution, which has a ”single-subject” rule that prohibits unrelated topics from being cobbled together into a single piece of legislation to prevent deal-making. In approving the bill two years ago, lawmakers tucked it into a bill dealing with scrap metal.
Before the March 9 ruling, dozens of municipalities had repealed their regulations rather than risk the expense of defending a lawsuit.
Since the law was adopted, more than 80 towns across Pennsylvania repealed gun laws rather than face hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal bills to defend ordinances that were seldom enforced. Five municipalities, including Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, have faced lawsuits under the law, according to Reuters’ Dan Kelley.
For more, go to: