From Gun Control to Bullet Control

Article excerpt

ITEM: The Los Angeles Times for April 11 commented: "After four years of George W. Bush, the notions that some people might be too dangerous or unstable to trust with a firearm or that assault weapons do not belong in civilized society are deader than a wild turkey in hunting season."

"Over the last four years," the editorial claimed, "the president and his congressional allies have repudiated or quietly eviscerated key gun laws and regulations. Now they are poised to shield firearms makers and sellers from nearly all damage claims when their products kill or maim.... Last year, Republican congressional leaders simply ran out the clock on the 10-year-old federal assault gun ban, refusing to even call a vote on renewing it despite steady popular support for the law. Bush, who once claimed that he supported the ban, refused to make so much as a phone call to his House or Senate allies to keep it alive. With it died the ban on domestically made ammunition clips with more than 10 rounds, a boon for any disgruntled employee, terrorist, or high school student who wants to mow down a crowd."

CORRECTION: Eroding Second Amendment protections will not cause gun crimes to fall, notwithstanding the wishes of the editors of the Los Angeles Times. While it may be cliche, it is still true: criminals willing to break laws against murder aren't likely to be deterred by more gun regulations.

The Times' reference to a high-school student is an attempt to ride the coattails of a shooting spree on the Red Lake Indian reservation in Minnesota. Yet, as reported in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, "the Red Lake scenario seemed to be beyond the reach of most gun-control proposals: child-safety-locks, background checks for gun-show sales and a ban on assault weapons. 'Everything that kid did that day, practically from the moment he walked out of his bedroom, was a felony,' said Joe Olson, a Hamline University law professor and president of the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance. 'I don't think any gun-control laws would have made a difference.'"

Meanwhile, even the New York Times has admitted that the end of the misnamed assault-weapons ban changed little. …