Friday, October 28, 2011

Double facepalm

I found two news articles about enacting gun laws in Nevada in the wake of the Carson City shooting last month, and both of them made my jaw drop. You have to be an airhead to write or say some of this stuff, and I thought I would fisk both articles this morning.

First up is this one, and this just begs to be pointed out:

"Nevada National Guard Sgt. Caitlin Kelley, one of the victims in the IHOP attack, responded to the shooting by calling for a ban on assault weapons, which can be purchased without a background check at many gun shows or through private sellers."
It would be better written if it said that most common firearms can be purchased privately, but are mostly subjected to a background check at gunshows. That would at least not be misleading or disingenuous, unlike this:

“I can’t imagine why we are even selling assault weapons to civilians,” said Kelley, who was shot in the foot and still uses a wheelchair. “There’s no reason for an AK-47 or an M-16 or an M-4 to be in a civilian’s home.”
AK-47s, M16s, and M4s are very very rare in the US. The weapon in question was illegally converted to full auto by a man who could have cared less for any law barring him from a tool to kill people; the response to this apparently is to have one of the victims of the shooting tell everyone that psychopathic killers shouldn't be allowed to buy automatic rifles.

Washoe County Sheriff Mike Haley agreed, saying: “I don’t see any logic to having assault weapons available to the public.” But he said banning such weapons would spark a sharp response by gun-rights advocates.
You correctly answered your own question there, chief. Way to go. The "logic" to having rifles available to the public is that the public wants rifles; and for every one scumbag that uses one for harm, hundreds of thousands or more peaceable men and women put them to good use. Because they are desired by far more good people than bad, they are available; and I reckon they will stay available for a long while to the good folks in Nevada.

Going now into a full blown lie:

Semi-automatic assault weapons can easily be converted into automatic weapons — which are the same thing as machine guns — with a simple kit available online or at gun shows, officials said.
Nope. Wrong. Erroneous. How this garbage keeps getting written is beyond me, but to clear things up, you cannot buy "simple kits" online or at gunshows, or anywhere besides criminals to make rifles fire automatically. You can purchase the fire control components to make an AR rifle fire automatically, but they're heavily regulated by the ATF, and so is the receiver that those fire control parts go into. The number of these receivers is finite, and the price to own one is high. I have seen booths at gunshows that will gladly sell you an automatic weapon, legally, which will set you back at least $10,000 for a cheap one, and you will have months and months of paperwork to do before you can own it. You can manufacture your own full automatic weapon in your basement out of scrap metal if you are mechanically inclined, or if you have access to metalworking equipment you could likewise turn some rifles into machine guns. You can also buy all the parts you would need to make a bomb from your local Home Despot, and assembling one would be way less effort than making a semi-auto AK into an automatic weapon, and the killing potential would be much higher. Chew on that for awhile.

This line was my first facepalm:

What happened at the IHOP “was as close to a war as most people will ever come, and they were helpless to defend against it,” Haley said. “But because of our love affair with weapons, we are subjecting the public to this type of violence. If this is going to change, the public has to stand up and demand change.”
This may sound cold, but being "helpless to defend" yourself is a personal choice. Sadly, the National Guard has largely taken away that personal choice by disarming Soldiers who, by their very title, are charged with guarding our nation. I'd say a lunatic shooting civilians with a rifle in an IHOP is threat to [the Nation] that could have been stopped had these Soldiers been armed, or by some yahoo eating breakfast who happened to be armed to protect his or her gift of life. How are you supposed to defend your people if you are not armed? How can you swear an oath to defend a nation and then be totally unprepared at keeping your charge? Does the public really believe that the National Guard is only supposed to shoot foreign enemies on some other soil? How the Sheriff can profess the above and then in the same breath advocate taking away the very tools to allow defense against it is bizarre.

If you really want to do a double facepalm like I did this morning, look no further than the comments to this story. It boggles the mind. A quick Google search then yielded this article that has almost the same shitty verbiage as the first, but with some extra pizaaaaaz!

"I think it's a good question to ask: Why does a typical citizen need to have an assault weapon?" he said. "I think we're at the point where we have to have that discussion. Can we protect citizens without impacting other people's rights?"
Go right ahead and have that discussion, because it's not going to go the way that you want it to go. I have to point out that a man's rights have absolutely nothing at all to do with protecting citizens, and are not measured by need. You have rights; either use them or don't, but get it out of your head that you can protect people by dishonoring them with a violation their rights.

Hey lookie! This article has lies, too:

Seven states have assault weapons bans: California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Virginia.
Not in Virginia; although if Old Dominion Dems have their way, they would scoop them up in a heartbeat, which is why it's been noted that we won't be seeing many of them winning elections in the near future.

Despite being diagnosed as schizophrenic, Sencion legally purchased the weapon from a private seller in California.
But you just said that these weapons have been banned in California! How can you say that they've been banned there, and then say that he legally bought them there? Great editing! These articles are the only reason why I bother to read the news.

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