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Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:34 AM

Please sign the petition to ban assault weapons

This petition was created by a Phoenix attorney after the Aurora shootings. Now it's gaining steam again, and collecting names quickly. Let's take this matter to Congress and the White House.

Nearly 110,000 signatures already gathered and names seem to be coming in fast.

Petition:

Ban Assault Weapons

To be delivered to: The United States House of Representatives, The United States Senate, and President Barack Obama

Petition Statement:

Congress should reinstitute the federal ban on assault weapons.
Petition Background

Good Morning America recently reported that the shooter in Aurora, Colorado, had an AR-15 assault rifle, which can hold upwards of 100 rounds. The last report was that 58 people were wounded, and 12 were killed. While it is true that people kill people, and that guns do not shoot themselves, it is also true that this kind of mass execution would not be possible without such high capacity weapons. How many people have to die before we ban those weapons?



http://signon.org/sign/ban-assault-weapons

Background on the ban: http://www.wltx.com/news/national/article/197121/142/Womans-Online-Fight-vs-Assault-Weapons-Gains-Ground

29 replies, 2041 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 29 replies Author Time Post
Reply Please sign the petition to ban assault weapons (Original post)
mainer Dec 2012 OP
Recursion Dec 2012 #1
mainer Dec 2012 #2
Recursion Dec 2012 #3
mainer Dec 2012 #4
Squinch Dec 2012 #5
Recursion Dec 2012 #9
Squinch Dec 2012 #12
Recursion Dec 2012 #13
Squinch Dec 2012 #14
Recursion Dec 2012 #17
Squinch Dec 2012 #18
hack89 Dec 2012 #20
Squinch Dec 2012 #21
hack89 Dec 2012 #22
Squinch Dec 2012 #27
hack89 Dec 2012 #29
Squinch Dec 2012 #28
Squinch Dec 2012 #15
Recursion Dec 2012 #16
Squinch Dec 2012 #19
X_Digger Dec 2012 #23
Squinch Dec 2012 #24
X_Digger Dec 2012 #25
Squinch Dec 2012 #26
pipoman Dec 2012 #10
Fla Dem Dec 2012 #6
pipoman Dec 2012 #7
former-republican Dec 2012 #8
CanonRay Dec 2012 #11

Response to mainer (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:36 AM

1. Write a better ban and I'll support it

The '94 ban wouldn't have caught the weapons in Aurora or Newtown, because neither had bayonet lugs or flash suppressors.

My casual impression is that

A) people want to ban semi-automatic weapons, and
B) people think that's what the assault weapons ban did

The first is not something I agree with, but certainly not a crazy idea. The second is just factually false, and (frankly) a result of our own dishonest marketing of the ban.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:40 AM

2. So you're okay with not banning anything

All it says is to reinstate a law that was once on the books.

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Response to mainer (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:47 AM

3. Right. I think the law itself does neither harm nor good

Which is why I think it's worth spending zero political capital on it

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Response to Recursion (Reply #3)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:49 AM

4. And it's WAY too much trouble to type your name

Not worth the effort for you.

Sometimes, the weight of a million signatures is enough to get a conversation started.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #3)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:52 AM

5. So how SHOULD it be worded? Clearly, you know something about how to word a petition to put some

teeth into it. So get on it!

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Response to Squinch (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 09:05 AM

9. It's not about the petition, I'm saying the ban itself was a dumb law that was marketed dishonestly

As witnessed by the fact that most people on DU (who are, after all, smart people) seem to think that it banned semi-automatic rifles, and seem not to notice that the rifles from both shootings would have been legal under it. This also gets to why people think people like me who don't support the law are "crazy"; if you think the law kept people from getting AK-47's, it makes sense to think anybody who opposes it is crazy.

If we want to ban semi-automatic weapons with detachable magazines, then we should say so. I don't really agree, but mostly because I think it could never be enforced, not because I think it's a bad or unconstitutional idea. And, my feelings about party loyalty being what they are, if the party backed it I would fall in line. But resurrecting a stupid law that didn't do anything, at potentially great political cost, is not something I support at all.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #9)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 10:06 AM

12. So what would your gun control law say?

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Response to Squinch (Reply #12)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 11:40 AM

13. Require licensing for gun ownership

Mandate secure storage with criminal liability for failing to. Biometric safeties on all new guns and free retrofitting on old ones

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Response to Recursion (Reply #13)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 04:06 PM

14. Do you know if there are any congresspeople who might be champions for these measures?

Would you ban any types of guns? Or rather, I should say, which types guns are not reasonable for a homeowner to want to use for hunting or reasonable protection.

What about gun shows? How would you change those rules?

Are you aware of any buy back programs that have been effective?

I'm asking because, as you pointed out, many of us, myself included don't know enough to know how to put teeth into this. I plan to become my congress members' best friend/worst nightmare.

This needs to be begun.

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Response to Squinch (Reply #14)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 04:52 PM

17. Conceivably

I haven't been on K street for about a year so I don't remember people's position papers, but there are some. Unfortunately the Members willing to stick their necks out for gun control aren't for the most part the ones who understand firearms.

Would you ban any types of guns? Or rather, I should say, which types guns are not reasonable for a homeowner to want to use for hunting or reasonable protection.

Well, I don't think focusing on types or features of guns is very useful. I think the 1934 NFA pretty well defines what guns are appropriate for civilians: semi-automatic or slower, .50 caliber or smaller. However, that's a statutory limit and there's no reason we couldn't change it.

What about gun shows? How would you change those rules?

We really, really, really need to stop talking about gun shows. Seriously. Trust me on this. Gun shows are legally no different than garage sales or classified ads. And people who go to gun shows, whose support we will need for this, hear the sneer with which we talk about them and the completely false myths we seem to have bought into about them ("no background checks required! complete anarchy!") and get turned off immediately.

As most of the DU gun nuts have said, private transfers of firearms should be able (or for that matter required) to use the same background check system that licensed dealers use. That's a much less inflammatory way of describing the "gun show loophole" (which isn't a loophole, and has nothing to do with gun shows).

Are you aware of any buy back programs that have been effective?

We have no idea, because we aren't good at counting the actual number of guns anywhere. I'm morally certain they don't do any harm.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #17)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:37 PM

18. Thanks for this. A couple more questions.

The idea that guns shows are just like garage sales doesn't make me feel better. I have never been to a gun show; is there a way that your licensing suggestion could be enforced at a gun show? And ARE those myths? Are there background checks already in place for gun shows?

If as you suggest the private sellers could use the same background check system that dealers use, would it be enforceable to make that mandatory for every private sale?

Really. I do appreciate this information.

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Response to Squinch (Reply #18)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:57 PM

20. The laws for background checks are the same inside a gun show as they are outside.

there is nothing unique about gun shows.

The issue is private sales - where ever they take place. Presently gun sales by non-gun dealers within their own state to another resident of their state are not regulated by the federal government. It is a state issue per the commerce clause of the constitution - the feds have no jurisdiction. So for there to be background checks on private sales each state has to pass legislation and set up their own system.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #20)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 06:33 PM

21. Hi. Thanks for joining the conversation! The idea that each state has to set up a system

seems insurmountable, because there are a lot of states that won't. Are you aware of any ideas circulating to get around that?

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Response to Squinch (Reply #21)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 06:36 PM

22. You can't "get around" the Constitution

for very good reasons.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #22)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 07:39 PM

27. No, I mean, can you think of a way to monitor or control the sale of guns between individuals within

a state? It seems like a lot of reasonable gun control would depend on licensing. The sale between individuals within a state doesn't seem to lend itself to licensing. Can you think of a way to catch those sales?

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Response to Squinch (Reply #27)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 09:42 AM

29. Yes - have each state pass a law.

Both licensing and private sales are state issues.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #17)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 07:52 PM

28. Recursion, hack89 has pointed out that in order for licensing or background checks to occur

in sales between individuals within a state, each state would have to enact a policy individually. This seems to be where the ability to implement your licensing suggestion would be difficult. Can you think of any way to catch those individual within-state sales for licensing?

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Response to Recursion (Reply #13)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 04:10 PM

15. Also, what about rules about clip size? Would those have an effect? nt

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Response to Squinch (Reply #15)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 04:46 PM

16. If you mean magazine size, that's not really my thing

I'm not opposed to it, I just don't think there's a huge difference between one 30-round magazine and three 10-round magazines. As far as that goes, here's what I see as a spectrum we could do (again, with the caveat that I think none of this is really going to do much). The spectrum is from "most extreme" to "least extreme":

1. Ban detachable magazines for semi-automatic weapons.

2. Require a bullet button so that magazines cannot be quickly reloaded.

3. Limit magazine size to X for some value of X

4. Nothing

1 & 2 would require wholesale acquisition (I'm avoiding the inflammatory word "confiscation") and/or modification of hundreds of thousands of existing guns (difficult and scary), or the grandfathering in of hundreds of thousands of existing guns (rendering it pointless for a generation or so).

3 would require a similar acquisition or grandfathering (with the same problems) of tens of millions of existing magazines out there.

Of those, 2 is the most interesting to me, but getting tens of millions of people to voluntarily modify hundreds of millions of guns would be, well, problematic. But maybe it's something we should consider for newly manufactured guns.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #16)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:39 PM

19. Thank you very much for this information. It is really helpful.

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Response to Squinch (Reply #15)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 06:53 PM

23. Sorry to but in, but I might have some insight on that one..

This was an assessment of the '94-'04 assault weapons ban, sponsored by the Clinton DOJ

http://www.sas.upenn.edu/jerrylee/research/aw_final2004.pdf

Glossary: LCM = Large Capacity Magazine, AW = Assault Weapon

Some highlights:

But a more casual assessment shows that gun crimes since the ban have been no less likely to cause death or injury than those before the ban, contrary to what we might expect if crimes with AWs and LCMs had both declined. For instance, the percentage of violent gun crimes resulting in death has been very stable since 1990 according to national statistics on crimes reported to police (see Figure 9-1 in section 9.1).


And, indeed, there has been no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness of gun violence, based on indicators like the percentage of gun crimes resulting in death or the share of gunfire incidents resulting in injury, as we might have expected had the ban reduced crimes with both AWs and LCMs.


Having said this, the banís impact on gun violence is likely to be small at best, and perhaps too small for reliable measurement. AWs were used in no more than 8% of gun crimes even before the ban. Guns with LCMs are used in up to a quarter of gun crimes, but it is not clear how often the outcomes of gun attacks depend on the ability to fire more than 10 shots (the current limit on magazine capacity) without reloading.


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Response to X_Digger (Reply #23)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 07:13 PM

24. In a meta analysis of gun deaths, these figures are interesting, but in a rampage like the ones

that seem to be happening every couple of weeks now, it seems to me that the faster the gun shoots and the fewer pauses in shooting, the more people can be killed. Am I missing anything in that?

Admittedly, these rampages are only a fraction of gun violence, and they probably don't contribute noticeably to the statistics, but if the magazine size could reduce deaths in these cases I think it would be worth trying.

And thanks for joining the conversation.

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Response to Squinch (Reply #24)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 07:25 PM

25. There are examples of large death tolls from multiple, smaller magazines..

The VT shooting is the example most often cited- the shooter used 10 round magazines, and killed more people than Friday's shooting. Another is the Luby's massacre back in the 90's. That one involved two guns with 10 round magazines.

Nor do I think that in an enclosed space such as the school on lock-down, magazine size restrictions would have resulted in fewer deaths and injuries.

Theoretically, yes, it might help. In reality? There's not a lot of evidence that it actually does.

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Response to X_Digger (Reply #25)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 07:35 PM

26. OK, thanks.

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Response to Squinch (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 09:05 AM

10. This is the problem...

nobody has ever defined "assault weapon" in an enforceable way. There is a video on youtube (I can find it if you wish) of the attorney general, the head of the BATFE, and the armorer of the LAPD all testifying before congress explaining their inability to define this term. Until there is a constitutional, meaningful definition, there will be no law.

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Response to mainer (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:59 AM

6. Done. n/t

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Response to mainer (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 09:00 AM

7. When someone defines assault weapon,

a necessary part of any law is definitions, we'll see what happens. The attorney general, director of the BATFE, or even gun control organizations have never actually defined this term in any enforceable, constitutional way. As long as nobody can do that there will be no "assault weapons ban". Defining them as semi-automatic rifles will require a constitutional amendment since semi automatic rifles have been "in common use for lawful purposes" (the standard set by SCOTUS) for nearly a century. The last 10 year "assault weapon ban" did nothing...there are no studies or statistics which could document a single benefit from that Democratic disaster.

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Response to mainer (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 09:03 AM

8. feel good gun control

 

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Response to mainer (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 09:35 AM

11. Thanks for posting this

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