Thursday, January 25, 2007

Maryland SCAWB

Read the article linked through the title and see what we are up against here. I wrote a LTE, but it didn't get published; some other guy did and got the same points across. Here is what I have to say (apologies for the crazy formatting after the cut-n-paste):

Sen. Lenett's wild claims in support of his proposed ban on so-called
"assault weapons" would be hilarious if not for the gravity of his extremist legislation. Or his misstatement of Constitutional law, something that is shocking coming from an elected official.

Despite Lenett's claims, his bill is much broader than the 1994 federal ban, and will be the most stringent firearm ban of any state in the country, save Washington, D.C. The opposite of narrowly tailored, Lenett's bill breathtakingly seeks to ban virtually all handguns sold in Maryland, as well as the most popular target-shooting rifles in the nation. Contrary to Lenett's claims, these to-be-banned firearms are no more dangerous than the few semi-automatic firearms spared from his ban. In fact, there is no functional difference in firepower between these banned and non-banned weapons; all types of semi-auto firearms require one pull of the trigger to fire one, and only one, round of ammunition. These are
definitely not machine guns, and it is ridiculous to assert that they "can spray bullets."

FBI statistics for 2005 show that Marylanders are about as likely to be beaten to death (18 victims), twice as likely to be bludgeoned to death (47 victims) or be more than three times as likely to be stabbed to death (68 victims), than be killed with any kind of rifle or shotgun (19 victims total). (Data is from

Lenett is wrong when he alludes that Second Amendment may have something
to do with hunting. The weight of independent legal and historical scholarship over the past fifteen years has firmly concluded that the Second and Fourteenth Amendments to the US Constitution protect a personal right to individual firearms ownership for self protection. Since fully automatic machine guns are considered to be rew-maintained "ordnance," and not individual firearms, they are not even relevant to the discussion of those Amendments, regardless of the attempts of the ban's supporters to blur the distinction between fully automatic and semi-automatic firearms (as evidenced by statements in the article).

Lennett's misguided bill should just be rejected.

That, in a nutshell is why this bill is FUBAR. It seems that hundreds of people are going to show up in Annapolis this year to oppose this bill. It should be a rollin' time . . ..


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