Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California has stirred up a hornets’ nest with her latest proposal to ban so-called “assault weapons” and standard capacity magazines while creating a federal registry of gun owners, complete with pictures and fingerprints. Analysts say supporting the measure would be “political suicide” for Democrats, and some opponents of Sen. Feinstein’s most recent assault on the Second Amendment are even asking the White House to put the far-left lawmaker on trial for treason. More than a few critics also suggested the move against gun rights could start another revolution or civil war.
Despite claims by the Obama administration and the establishment media, recent polls show that a majority of Americans oppose Feinstein’s scheme, not that opinion polls matter when discussing rights enshrined in the Constitution. Analysts also say the dangerous legislation is unlikely to pass — especially with GOP control of the House and even liberal so-called “RINO” Republicans in the Senate vowing to oppose the measure. The previous “assault weapons” ban, which expired in 2004, was also entirely ineffective, according to studies.
Instead of more gun control laws, pressure is mounting on legislators to repeal statutes purporting to create so-called “gun-free zones,” which experts say are a “magnet” for mass murderers who obviously do not obey laws anyway. The National Rifle Association (NRA), meanwhile, is pushing a controversial plan for federally funded armed guards at schools to help prevent future tragedies.
Sen. Feinstein’s proposed legislation, which she promised to introduce in 2013, would purport to ban the sale, manufacture, or importation of 120 types of guns — essentially semi-automatic firearms that some politicians and their allies in the establishment press have arbitrarily described as “assault weapons.” Included on the list are many of the most popular pistols, rifles, and shotguns owned by tens of millions of Americans. The bill would also seek to criminalize the possession of standard capacity magazines that accept more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
The anti-gun extremists in Washington, D.C., critics say, are hoping to completely disarm America. “The bottom line: If we are foolish enough to embrace a ban on any weapon in the coming Congress then we are unwittingly embracing a ban on every weapon,” noted AWR Hawkins with the pro-Second Amendment group AmmoLand Shooting Sports, saying Feinstein’s plan was really a thinly veiled attempt to ban handguns as well. “The Democrats cannot be trusted with our freedoms, and they will politicize every tragedy to accomplish their ends.”
Another one of the most troubling aspects of the Feinstein scheme is a provision that would purport to mandate a federal database of gun owners, which, aside from being anti-constitutional, is also currently prohibited by statute. According to a summary of the legislation released by Sen. Feinstein, the bill would unconstitutionally seek to register weapons in a federal database that would include photographs and fingerprints of gun owners.
Also required to be able to keep one’s “grandfathered” weapons under the proposal would be local law enforcement verification placed in the federal registry, as mandated by the “National Firearms Act” (NFA) — essentially requiring a signature from a county sheriff or city police chief. One of the many problems already cited with the plan is that some anti-gun local law enforcement bosses could refuse to sign, as they already do oftentimes for machine guns, leaving gun owners with the option of either giving up their weapons, facing arrest, or hiding them.
Of course, the Constitution does not authorize the federal government to create a national registry of gun owners any more than it would permit a ban on semi-automatic rifles or pistols — in fact, the Second Amendment explicitly guarantees the God-given right to keep and bear arms, and the Supreme Court recently upheld that right. Aside from that, though, critics of the scheme have pointed to the historical record on gun registration: It is often simply a precursor to outright confiscation, as countless governments including the National Socialist (Nazi) regime of Adolf Hitler, numerous mass murdering communist dictatorships, and even modern-day Western countries such as the United Kingdom and Australia have proven.
Plus, critics of the proposal point to studies showing that the previous “assault-weapons” ban — in place from 1994 to 2004, but far less draconian than the current proposal — did virtually nothing to stop crime, murder, or mayhem, despite promises by its supporters. One 2004 study by the National Research Council cited in news reports, for example, found that the scheme “did not reveal any clear impacts on gun violence.”
Even the Justice Department explained that it had “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.” When the ban expired, anti-Second Amendment extremists claimed murder and mayhem would be sure to follow. Of course, that never happened, with murders nationwide actually dropping by almost four percent — the first decline since 1999 — the year after lawmakers refused to renew the ban.