Friday, March 07, 2008

Encoded Ammunition: Making Criminals of Honest Folks

I know that I've been writing about the recent rash of "Encoded Ammunition" bills being introduced to state legislature for over a month, but I still haven't grasped the full effect if these bills are passed into law.

Witness this comment from forum.

Pizzaman17 sez:
Like willy said earlier I am not giving up any ammo that i have right now. If this passes and it is made illegal to have unmarked rounds and/or load your own rounds then there will be allot of new criminals out there starting with me.
Well ... yes.

I've got ammunition I reloaded years ago, and most of it meets the requirements of at least one state's proposed bill.

For example, I have a slew of .30-30 ammunition that I inherited when my father died ... in 1994! (It was intended to accompany the Winchester Model 94 , a definitively 'hunting only' rifle that I inherited at the same time.) That's 13 years for those who aren't willing to do the math. You may say "Geek, that's bogus. The bills apply only to 'handgun' ammunition."

Yeah, well, some states have proposed bills that specify "handguns and assault weapons", and what is to keep the states from identifying the Model 94 ... or the .30-06 Garand ... as an "Assault Weapon"?

Besides, Thompson Center from building a Contender pistol in .30-30 caliber? In fact, they have already done so ... twice: The model 3560 and the model 3223. In calibers which are generally accepted to be "rifles", they also currently offer Model 3556 (.223 Remington, very close to 5.56mm AR15 and variants); Model 3568 (.17 HMR); Model 3409 (204 Ruger); Model 3564 (45/70 Gov't); Model 3511 (6.8 Remington); and several other models of notionally 'pistols' which shoot 'rifle-caliber' ammunition.

How much disposable income are YOU willing to bet that these 'handguns' would not become sufficient justification for these 'rifle' cartridges to become controlled by the same bills which currently PURPORT to apply only to 'handgun ammunition'?

Point In Fact:
These bills are so loosely (read: "shoddily") written that any rifle-caliber ammunition which is commercially usable in a 'handgun' by any definition may be subject to these restrictions. How about a derringer which is variously able to load .45 and .410 (shotgun) ammunition?

And how about that .30-06 Garand you've bought and stashed in your gun safe? Sure, it's designed for a 165 grain bullet, but suppose you have a supply of ought-six loaded in the extra long Hornady 190 grain BTSP, the 208 grain E-Max, or the 220 grain Round Nose? Sure, these bullets are so long-nosed, they probably wouldn't even cycle through a Garand. Doesn't matter. If the Garand is classified as an "Assault Weapon", all connections to reason are no longer in service, please hold for the next available operator.

Don't waste my time, and yours, protesting that "they would never do that!" You may think you know your local politicos but if you charge them with integrity they will deny it to their dying death, and present sufficient proof that they have none.

They're all "Snakes in a Drain", and you know that.
How do you tell a Politician or an Irishman (but I repeat myself) is lying? You watch his lips.
If they're moving ... he's lying.

We can't trust a politician in general, and we certainly can't trust a politician who would present such a flawed bill. If one or more of them should pass into law, that's a pretty strong signal that they are Not Your Friend.

And because these bills are so definitively couched in generalities (eg: definition of a handgun; definition of an 'assault rifle'; definition of ammunition) which they can change at will with very little risk of challenge -- you know that any ammunition you own is probably subject to inclusion under the terms of these bills.[

Including your .410 shotgun. After all, aren't there derringer pistols available which can load and shoot .410 shotgun ammunition?

Encode those pellets ... they're man-killers!

So don't allow yourself to feel too complacent. Avoid the temptation to tell yourself that "... these guys aren't out to take MY ammunition ... it's only good for shooting at birds and snakes anyway. Surely they will never be so distanced from reality that they target my (shotshells, hunting ammunition, plinking ammunition, name your personal "protected" class of ammunition.)

That's right. If you are so deluded that you think these bills are intended to 'stop crime', you're fooling nobody but yourself.

These are not "anti-crime" bills; these are "anti-gun" bills. They have no purpose other than to prevent you, personally (and I'm talking to you, complacent-gun-owner-man) from being able to stand tall with a loaded gun in your hand in furtherance of whatever purpose you may have originally purchased said gun.

Resistance to Tyrants? Dead!
Defense of your Nation? Dead!
Personal defense? Dead!
Competition? Dead!
Target shooting? Dead!
Hunting? Dead?
Rodent Elimination? Dead!
Plinking? Dead!

For any purpose you can envision to justify owning a firearm, if these bills pass into law ... somewhere there is a politician who can envision a reason why you should not be allowed to have either a firearm or the ammunition to accomplish the activity.

The laws may not exist now, but with just a few casual tweakings of some existing statutes, they can redefine your guns, or the ammunition needed to make your guns work, effectively ... Dead!

They don't even have to breath hard, these politicians, to slip it to you once you've allowed them the power ennobled by these cheesy do-nothing laws.

Yesterday you were a law-abiding citizen. Today, you are a criminal.

And you don't even have to do anything.
In fact, they very much prefer that you don't.

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