Dear Santa …


Brady Campaign’s Wish List To Obama Ready To Go

Dennis E. Florianby Dennis E. Florian
Gun Owners’ Resource staff

We Canadians like to complain about our gun laws.  A lot.  Something else we’re rather fond of doing, in a masochistic sort of way, is looking to our neighbours to the south with an envious eye to the freedoms they enjoy under their country’s second amendment to their Constitution.

Sadly, those heady days of vicarious enjoyment may not be in as safe a keeping as we were once so comfortable thinking.  Word is already making its way around south of the border about how the election of Barack Obama, and the menagerie of malcontents he has chosen for key appointments, are serving as reminders of the truth to be found in those old saws that freedom isn’t free and the price of liberty is vigilance.

But seriously folks, this is America we’re talking about here, right?  I mean, just how bad could it possibly be?  To find a clue to the direction the gun-grabbers are heading in, with their heady sense of rejuvenated entitlement, one need look no further than the Brady Campaign‘s little wish list.

“… and a UN Peacekeeper GI Joe[1] and a pony.”

Everybody knows that the folks at the Brady Campaign hate guns the way kids hate lima beans and broccoli: they can’t give a rational explanation for it, they just know that they don’t like them and that’s all they need to know.  Everything else said is merely a means to fulfilling that prejudice.  But even the Brady bunch wouldn’t have had the gall to shove demands like these in the face of any administration with even an ounce of respect for American law or tradition.

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Even the Bradys aren’t delusional enough to think that Obama was elected because of his (well documented) notions of gun control, but that isn’t stopping them from puffing themselves up and claiming that it was they who managed to tip the electoral scales in the Democrats’ favour.  Naturally, this claim comes with an attached laundry list of demands from those who claim to have paid the piper and now think they can call the tune.

If Obama is smart — and even I don’t think he’s outright stupid — he’ll tell the Brady Campaign to take their list on a long walk off a short pier, if for no other reason than that giving them so much as an inch will only crank up the volume of demands to a fevered pitch.

Don’t believe me?  Consider Brady’s own statement that this “is not intended to present an exhaustive list . . . but does provide a starting point.”

In other words:  Expect more.  A LOT more.

So just what are they hollering for?  Read on; just don’t expect your mood to improve any:

  • A California-style “assault weapons” ban.
    For years, Brady has referred to California’s ban — far worse than the federal ban of ’94-’04 — as the “model” for the rest of the nation. Brady doesn’t say so, but it clearly supports — as does the Violence Policy Center — the California-like ban that Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) has proposed in Congress since before the ’94 semi-auto ban expired. Among its differences from the 1994 ban, the McCarthy bill would ban rifles like the AR-15, even if they do not have a flash suppressor, bayonet mount, or adjustable-position stock. It would ban the M1, the M1 Carbine, the Ruger Mini-14 series, the SKS, and many other semi-automatic rifles not previously labeled as “assault weapons.” And it would ban every semi-automatic shotgun, by banning its receiver. Brady wants .50 caliber rifles banned as well.
  • A ban on standard magazines designed for self-defense.
    Brady calls them “high-capacity,” but magazines that hold more than 10 rounds are designed for self-defense, as demonstrated by the fact that mostguns that use standard defensive magazines (holding more than 10 rounds) are handguns designed for self-defense, and used for that purpose by private citizens, law enforcement officers, and military personnel alike.

Now’s as good a time as any to dispel one blatant lie that Brady includes with its wish list.

Brady says: “Beginning with the Brady Law in 1993, the assault weapon ban in 1994, and other Clinton Administration policies, our nation experienced an historic decline in gun crime and violence . . . during the Bush years, gun crime increased as the Administration and Congress . . . allowed the assault weapons ban to expire [and] gave the gun industry special legal protection.”

The truth: violent crime began declining in 1991, three years before the Brady Act and the semi-automatic firearm ban, and more than a year before Bill Clinton took office. And, the nation’s violent crime rate has declined another eight percent since President Bush took office.

Not enough?  Try this: in 1998, the Brady Act’s waiting period on gun sales ceased, because it was replaced by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which the Brady Campaign has always opposed (though they now try to take credit for, brazenly referring to NICS checks as “Brady checks.”) Contrary to Brady’s prediction that crime rates would soar if the semi-automatic firearm ban expired, the ban expired in 2004, and since then violent crime rates have been lower than anytime in the last 31 years.  Oops.

Moving right along…

  • Repeal the recent Department of the Interior rule allowing state law to determine if firearms can be carried in National Parks and wildlife refuges. 
    Brady gives no evidence to support its strange notion that allowing permit-holders to carry in National Parks “would increase the risk of gun crime, injury and death in the parks and wildlife refuges.” As for Brady’s hunches: for the last 20 years it has predicted that allowing people to carry guns for protection will cause murder rates to soar, but people now carry guns for protection in 40 states and since 1999, murder rates have been lower than anytime since the mid-1960s.  You’d think that, after all those years, they’d get tired of being wrong… all the time.  Then again, nothing has the tenacity of a liberal with a bad idea.
  • Repeal the Tiahrt Amendment and the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA).
    Brady complains that the Tiahrt Amendment “restricts disclosure of the data to law enforcement,” and prevents the BATFE from disclosing firearm-tracing data to the public. The first claim is an outright lie. The amendment specifically allows BATFE to provide the data to any law enforcement agency involved in a bona fide investigation related to a traced firearm.

Tracing data isn’t released to the public so that, among other reasons, criminals won’t know that the police are investigating them. Brady should just tell the truth, for once: even though the BATFE and Congressional Research Service repeatedly state that tracing data are not reliable enough to draw conclusions about the criminal use ofguns generally, Brady wants the data so it can concoct bogus claims to use in lawsuits against firearm manufacturers who comply with every applicable firearm law.  These lawsuits are currently prohibited by the PLCAA, which Brady hopes to overturn.

  • Require all firearm sales to go through NICS (advocated by Mr. Obama’s choice for Attorney General, Eric Holder), and allow the FBI to retain the records of all NICS-approved firearm transfers.
    It used to be that Brady claimed that the only private transfers that it wanted run through NICS were those taking place at gun shows. Now, it’s all private transfers, including gifts between family members and sales or trades between friends. And, it wants the FBI to record all transfers. Translation: Gun and gun owner registration, no two ways about it.  This has already proven to be a failed experiment in Canada, where the federal long gun registry has run up a tab of over two billion dollars but has failed to prevent even one crime.  And this is a nation with only a tenth of the population of the US.
  • Allow a NICS check to reject someone whose name is on an FBI watch list.
    This is yet another idea touted by prospective AG Holder and Obama adviser Rahm Emanuel. The obvious problem with it is that you can get on one of these lists by having the same name as a suspected criminal or terrorist, and if you are on a list, you may not be able to determine which one you are on, much less get yourself removed.  Remember when Sen. Ted Kennedy ended up on a “no fly” list?  The reasons for that one still haven’t been made public, after all this time.  What chance do you think an ordinary citizen would have?
  • Prohibit the sale of more than one handgun to a single individual in a 30-day period, to thwart “large-volume” illegal gun traffickers. 
    Federal law already requires a dealer to report to law enforcement authorities whenever a person buys more than one handgun in a five-day period.  This proposal amounts to the rationing of a constitutional right with no crime-reduction benefit.
  • Require all new guns to micro-stamp ammunition with serial numbers linking the owner in a federal gun-owner registration database. 
    Again we have the “National Ammo Registry” mindset at work.  Most crimes are solved by other means, not by ammunition markings, and criminals could easily file off the serial numbers, as they already do. Brady’s agenda isn’t about solving crimes; for them micro-stamping is another way of achieving gun and gun owner registration.  More on this type of buffoonery can be found here.
  • Require consumer safety standards for firearms.
    Even the vehemently anti-gun Violence Policy Center (how bad does an idea have to be for that bunch to come out and admit it?) has said this would lead to standards too difficult for firearm manufacturers to achieve, thus ending firearm production.

And let’s close out now with the big Brady lie:

“These proposals are clearly constitutional under the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent Second Amendment decision in District of Columbia v. Heller and they pose no threat to the interests of law-abiding gun owners.”

Wrong, wrong, and wrong again.  Heller clearly said that laws cannot deprive people of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms for defensive purposes. As for “the interests of gun owners,” we’ll follow the Supreme Court’s example, and let gun owners speak for themselves. The Court declared D.C.’s handgun ban unconstitutional because gun owners — not sleazy politicians of social-engineering busybodies — consider handguns to be the type of firearm best suited for self-defense.

So there’s still hope.  But only if it’s defended by those who need it most.


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