25 Years Ago Today: President Clinton Signs the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban Into Law

For all of you who are under 30 years old, hearing the current talk about another “assault weapons” ban, let me recount a little bit of history.

September 13, 1994 is a date which will live in gun rights infamy. That was the date that President Clinton put pen to paper and made things a wreck for law-abiding gun owners with the Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act, a subsection of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 law that was created at the behest of the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex.

Police statistics prior to the passage of the ban made clear how useless the AWB would be in actually reducing crime. The firearms targeted were hardly every used by criminals.

  • California. In 1990, “assault weapons” comprised thirty-six of the 963 firearms involved in homicide or aggravated assault and analyzed by police crime laboratories, according to a report prepared by the California Department of Justice, and based on data from police firearms laboratories throughout the state. The report concluded that “assault weapons play a very small role in assault and homicide firearm cases.” Of the 1,979 guns seized from California narcotics dealers in 1990, fifty-eight were “assault weapons.”
  • Chicago. From 1985 through 1989, only one homicide was perpetrated with a military caliber rifle. Of the 17,144 guns seized by the Chicago police in 1989, 175 were “military style weapons.”
  • Florida. Florida Department of Law Enforcement Uniform Crime Reports for 1989 indicate that rifles of all types accounted for 2.6% of the weapons used in Florida homicides. The Florida Assault Weapons Commission found that “assault weapons” were used in 17 of 7,500 gun crimes for the years 1986-1989.
  • Los Angeles. Of the more than 4,000 guns seized by police during one year, only about 3% were “assault weapons.”
  • Maryland. In 1989-90, there was only one death involving a “semiautomatic assault rifle” in all twenty-four counties of the State of Maryland.
  • Massachusetts. Of 161 fatal shootings in Massachusetts in 1988, three involved “semiautomatic assault rifles.” From 1985 to 1991, the guns were involved in 0.7% of all shootings.
  • Miami. The Miami police seized 18,702 firearms from January 1, 1989 to December 31, 1993. Of these, 3.13% were “assault weapons.”
  • New Jersey. According to the Deputy Chief Joseph Constance of the Trenton New Jersey Police Department, in 1989, there was not a single murder involving any rifle, much less a “semiautomatic assault rifle,” in the State of New Jersey. No person in New Jersey was killed with an “assault weapon” in 1988. Nevertheless, in 1990 the New Jersey legislature enacted an “assault weapon” ban that included low-power .22 rifles, and even BB guns. Based on the legislature’s broad definition of “assault weapons,” in 1991, such guns were used in five of 410 murders in New Jersey; in forty-seven of 22,728 armed robberies; and in twenty-three of 23,720 aggravated assaults committed in New Jersey.
  • New York City. Of 12,138 crime guns seized by New York City police in 1988, eighty were “assault-type” firearms.
  • New York State. Semiautomatic “assault rifles” were used in twenty of the 2,394 murders in New York State in 1992.
  • San Diego. Of the 3,000 firearms seized by the San Diego police in 1988-90, nine were “assault weapons” under the California definition.
  • San Francisco. Only 2.2% of the firearms confiscated in 1988 were military-style semiautomatics.
  • Virginia. Of the 1,171 weapons analyzed in state forensics laboratories in 1992, 3.3% were “assault weapons.”
  • National statistics. Less than four percent of all homicides in the United States involve any type of rifle. No more than .8% of homicides are perpetrated with rifles using military calibers. (And not all rifles using such calibers are usually considered “assault weapons.”) Overall, the number of persons killed with rifles of any type in 1990 was lower than the number in any year in the 1980s.
  • Police View: Over 100,000 police officers delivered a message to Congress in 1990 stating that only 2% to 3% of crimes are committed using a so-called “assault weapon.”
  • Florida study: In Florida, only 3.5% of the guns recovered by the police were guns that could loosely be defined as “assault weapons.” State of Florida Commission on Assault Weapons, Report, 18 May 1990, pp. 34-41. State of Florida Commission on Assault Weapons, Report, 18 May 1990, pp. 34-41.
  • California study: The California Department of Justice suppressed an official report showing that “assault weapons” comprised only 3.7% of the guns used in crime. While the report was eventually leaked to the media, it received little press coverage.
  • The Washington Times, 27 June 92 by David Alan Coia. “Assault rifles said to play small role in violent crime”
  • Virginia task force: A special task force on assault weapons found that only 2.8 percent of the homicides involved “assault-type weapons” during 1992.
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch, 4 August 1993, by Mark Johnson. “Assault-type weapons rarely used”
  • Congressional Record, 13 September 1990, p. E 2826, citing [Police Advertisement], Roll Call, 3 September 1990. Also, see Howard Schneider, “Gun Owners Take Shot at Schaefer Assault-Weapon Bill,” The Washington Post, February 15, 1991.
  • Knives more deadly: According to the FBI, people have a much greater chance of being killed by a knife or a blunt object than by any kind of rifle, including an “assault rifle.” In Chicago, the chance is 67 times greater. That is, a person is 67 times more likely to be stabbed or beaten to death in Chicago than to be murdered by an “assault rifle.” FBI, “Crime in the United States,” 1994, p. 18. Matt L. Rodriguez, Superintendent of Police for the City of Chicago, 1993 Murder Analysis at 12, 13.

But then, just as now, anti-gun politicians didn’t let details like facts and statistics get in their way.

The political environment was so dark that even two former Presidents, one an icon of conservatism, joined an obscure Georgia peanut farmer in publicly supporting the ban.

Courtesy Los Angeles Times

With the stroke of Bill Clinton’s pen, what was legal to manufacturer and sell one day was suddenly prohibited.

Luis Valdes for TTAGGuns likes these instantly became highly sought after and more valuable because they could take flash hiders, pistol grips, detachable 10+ round mags, folding stocks, and, of course, bayonets.

Original ad from Centerfire Systems when the AWB was being passed in 1994.

By legislative fiat, the end result was neutered guns and gimped magazines like this.

A post-ban Legal Bushmaster with a fixed stock, 10-round magazine, no bayonet lug, and a non-threaded barrel. (Luis Valdes for TTAG)

Magazines over 10 rounds were banned and a number of guns were, too, either by name or through a features test. The Clinton administration crowed about its passage like it was the second coming of FDR.

Despite the electoral armageddon Democrats suffered at the polls in 1994, largely attributed to the ban, they used it as a campaign tool for the 1996 presidential Elections.

But the industry wasn’t stupid and figured out ways to work around the ban in creative ways. Here, we have a 60 Minutes report originally aired in 1999, talking exactly about what the ban did and how gun manufacturers got around it.

 

Original Bushmaster ad showing a post-ban legal AR-15

 

Period Rock River Arms ad showing a post-ban configured rifle and a LE/Gov-Mil only sale rifle.

As under all prohibitions, prices on many items sky rocketed. Grandfathered GLOCK magazines were especially hit hard.

CDNN ads during the AWB

Since pistols were affected by the capacity limit too, gun makers decided that if they were limited to ten rounds, they’d shrink their guns and make them far more concealable. That horrified gun grabbers. Take, for instance, this Chicago Tribune article from July 18, 2000 titled Guns Foes Warn of ‘Pocket Rockets’.

The gun fits in the palm of your hand. It packs three times the power of its predecessors. It holds up to 10 bullets. It is what police call a “pocket rocket.”

The issue snagged the attention of U.S. Rep. Rod Blagojevich (D-Ill.), a champion of anti-gun legislation who on Monday said he would introduce a bill to ban the weapons. “These are new high-tech guns designed specifically for killing people,” he said during a news conference at the Dirksen Federal Building. “They have no real sport purpose, and they don’t do anything that enhances a gun collector’s collection.”

The weapons started gaining popularity in 1994, and today, virtually all major gun manufacturers produce them, said Tom Diaz, senior policy analyst at the center. Diaz also said the industry has promoted “pocket rockets”–a term coined by Austrian gun manufacturer Glock to market a small, high-powered pistol–in tandem with a wave of state laws that permit licensed people to carry concealed weapons.

Guns like the GLOCK 26 were born because of the legal restrictions placed on the industry. If someone was limited to 10 rounds of 9mm, why would they buy a G17 with all that wasted space? Instead, guns the size of a Walther PPK or Smith & Wesson J-Frame — but chambered in 9mm or .40 S&W — came on the scene and they scared the bejeezus out of the civilian disarmament lobby.

But the industry and more importantly, the law-abiding public loved them.

Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation based in Bellevue, Wash., maintains that the guns fill an important niche.

“They serve a very important purpose for people’s self-defense, especially for women who want to put it in their purse,” said Gottlieb, who said about 22,000 of the organization’s members or contributors come from Illinois. “There’s no such thing as a good or bad gun. It depends on whose hand it’s in.”

Fortunately for gun owners, the Assault Weapons Ban law had a 10-year sunset provision. It was the only way the law would have gotten the necessary Republican votes to pass at the time.

The 2000 and 2002 elections were mostly positive. George W. Bush beat Al Gore, was elected President, and the Republican Party (then somewhat pro-gun) maintained the majority in Congress in won in 1994, even though President Bush said he’d sign a renewal of the ban if it reached his desk.

But when the ban expired, no bill to extend it or make it permanent was ever even brought to a vote in Congress. That was attributed to the huge defeats Democrats suffered in the 1994 election. No bill ever reached President Bush’s desk.

Thankfully, on September 13, 2004, ten years after it was enacted, the 1994 ban expired. It was like a veil was lifted off the bird cage and the warmth of the sun finally came pouring in again.

ATF’s notice posted on 9/13/2004

The market shuddered with excitement (and pent up demand). Things became normal once again. And oh, how certain companies, pro-gun organizations, and gun banners reacted.

The firearms industry cranked up production, finally able to sell what was what was once verboten to the common plebs again. Standard capacity magazines, flash hiders, and telescoping stocks fell like manna from heaven as wallets flung open across the nation.

Bushmaster’s website on 9/13/2004

Olympic Arms’ announcement on 9/13/2004

 

Armalite’s website on 9/13/2004

Websites like AR15.com went nuts with the expiration of the ban.

Seen at AR15.com when the AWB expired

 

Also at AR15.com on 9/13/2004

Pro-gun organizations like the NRA and GOA celebrated.

NRA’s website on 9/13/2004

GOA’s website on 9/13/2004. CLICK HERE for the full size legible image

As you might imagine, the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex was less than thrilled with the demise of the ban.

Violence Policy Center’s website on 9/13/2004. CLICK HERE for the full size legible image.

 

Brady Campaign’s website on 9/13/2004. CLICK HERE for the full size legible image.

As we now know, the Clinton assault weapons ban was an utter failure. It proved worthless in preventing crime and in reality only affected the law-abiding. Even the gun-grabbers themselves admitted this after the ban ended.

New York Times‘ Lois Beckett.

But in the 10 years since the previous ban lapsed, even gun control advocates acknowledge a larger truth: The law that barred the sale of assault weapons from 1994 to 2004 made little difference.

It turns out that big, scary military rifles don’t kill the vast majority of the 11,000 Americans murdered with guns each year. Little handguns do.

You don’t say.

To this day, my tastes and purchasing habits in firearms have been shaped by living through the assault weapons ban years. I see folks spend a ton of cash on fancy muzzle brakes when, to me, a standard $10 A2 flash hider is where it is at.

Folding/collapsing stocks and magazines over 10 rounds are much more important to me and that’s what guides my tastes, even in this era of slick, full-length free-float handguards and space-age muzzle brakes.

The fight, of course, is far from over. The assaults on our rights from those who are working toward complete civilian disarmament continue, just as they always have.

Bill Clinton assault weapons ban

In this Sept. 13, 1994, file photo President Bill Clinton, center-right, shakes hands with Stephen Sposato as Marc Klaas looks on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington after he signed a $30 billion sweeping crime bill that was six years in the making and included a hotly disputed ban on assault weapons. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Both sides have learned some lessons and taken them to heart as a result of those dark ten years. The Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex learned that grandfathering and a features test don’t really work and that outright bans and confiscation are the way to go.

The gun rights side learned to buy ’em cheap and stack ’em deep, along with the fact that we can’t sit back…and that the fight to protect our rights never ends.

 

comments

  1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

    I bought one of the very last Calico 9mm high-cap guns in late 1994, literally right after the ban took effect. It was one of only two remaining in SoCal that had been manufactured pre-ban, at least according to my calls all around the state (this was pre-Interwebz, remember). Had a 50-rd helical feed magazine. The value skyrocketed, and I parted with it after the AWB ban expired.

    Now I have all the gun goodies I always wanted, and my focus is on training.

    1. avatar Voldamort says:

      Did your 9mm Calico do any better that the one I had in .22RF? It was a reliability nightmare. It seemed mostly centered on the magazine, but I couldn’t fix it to my satisfaction, so I sold in on to an interested customer. I sure was enamored of that giant magazine that didn’t hang out the bottom though.

      1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

        You mean the rifle with the 100-rd mag and thumbhole stock? I really, really wanted one of those, but didn’t have the money at the time (I was young and newly married) in the early ’90s to cough up $350 for it. Kicked myself for years after the AWB went into effect.

        Those rifles also accepted the optional 50-rd mags in .22LR for better reliability, I later read.

        1. avatar Voldamort says:

          I read that too… after I had already sold it. It was sure cool when it worked though. I really liked that stock mounted magazine with a hundred rounds. I don’t think I ever made it through a whole mag without a stoppage. Even so, it was a fun range toy. I had it for a couple years. But when somebody offered me 50 bucks more than I paid for it, I thought I’d better jump on it.
          I think the only gun I’ve ever lost money on was my second pistol, a Ruger Single Six that I packed on my hip for years as a teen, and just completely wore out. That one wasn’t worth much after I got done abusing it (not to mention the 50,000 rounds it went through…) for a decade. Even so, I think I got half back. One sure isn’t going to do that well with other mechanical objects. Imagine using a cell phone or a car for a decade and it still being worth half what you paid for it! Not bloody likely.

  2. avatar Dodgeball says:

    What’s a “High Cap Magazine?”

    Oops, I forgot that we only play stupid when we need to. That must be a “standard cap magazine.”

    1. avatar Thixotropic says:

      I needed to take some firearms training in the early 1990’s as I had aquired my very first CHL permit in Texas and the good people at HPD SWAT (hanging out at the EasTEX indoor range here in Houston) taught me that despite 4 years of military service during the Vietnam Conflict and hunting all my life, I did NOT know what I was doing with a handgun tactically.

      I have 12 10-round capacity mags for my G32 as a result of the Clinton Gun Ban. On the positive side, during training, it forces me to change mags more often, which is a good thing.

      This provided a lesson that I learned well. I have a number of regular capacity, AND A FEW HIGH CAPACITY mags for ALL of my weapons, especially my AR pattern rifles. I purchased my first AR while Shitbama was President, and as a result paid way too much for it. I am forever grateful to him for being the GREATEST GUN SALESMAN OF ALL TIME.

    2. avatar Hannibal and the Elephants says:

      In 1994 I bought as many standard capacity 30 round magazines as I could get my hands on (turns out not many) even though I did not own an AR platform rifle. Today I keep those original aluminum magazines in their pristine wrappers as a reminder of what could happen at any time. I use my Magpul magazines instead.

  3. avatar RGP says:

    Yep and at the time I was in school and worked part time in a gun shop. Before Clinton signed that bill, you couldn’t give away AR15’s. Then, instantly, everybody wanted one.

    1. avatar neiowa says:

      Hopefully you “don’t own” a good stock of 30rd mags and 5.56mm.

      And if actually don’t own. WTF is your problem? Minimum of one modern musket per family member. With good stock of 30rd mags and 5.56mm

      1. avatar James Campbell says:

        I guess I’m woefully unprepared. Only AR I own is an AR-10 (POF P308 SPR 18.5″ Gen4 EDGE), with a dozen 20 rd mags, and a dozen 25 rd mags. Buds Gun Shop and TargetSportUSA keep me with over 1k rounds of Hornady Black 308Win. Wish I were prepared.

        1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

          But are your mags empty and in a box, or actually loaded and ready? THEN you can say you’re prepared.

        2. avatar James Campbell says:

          The AR-10 is kept in an Explorer hard case (Mod#11413) with five loaded 20 rd mags, & four loaded 25 rd mags. Also have a Wilson Combat/Beretta 92G Brigadier Tactical in that case, with five loaded 20rd mags for that (18rd M9 mags, with the MecGar “plus 2” extended bases.
          It’s my SHTF guncase.

        3. avatar I Haz A Question says:

          Excellent. Similar to my own SHTF trunk gun bag. You pass the white glove test.

          Carry on.

        4. avatar Voldamort says:

          James: I’d consider that excellent. Do you rotate the loaded mags every year or so? I’ve had a magazine spring fail on >20 rounders before, due to the spring sacking out. So I started shooting out the old rounds each year and then switching out the previously loaded mags for the other unloaded ones with fresh rounds, and putting the newly empty ones in storage and letting them rest until the next time.
          I never had the problem again, so it seems to have worked. But it only happened once, probably twenty five years ago, so it could have just been bad luck. But I like my ready ammo to be fairly new anyway, so I’ll continue even if it isn’t a big issue.

        5. avatar James Campbell says:

          I rotate mags annually, in both my cased SHTF guns and my daily carry sidearms (a Walther PPQ 45 (with 1 additional mag) & an “old school” Walther P5 9mm (with 2 additional mags) both give me 25 rounds).

        6. avatar Voldamort says:

          James: Can’t get much better than that setup. It’s better than mine, which is almost the same but with an M-4gery instead. With the 16″ barrel rather than the 14 1/2 with the pinned flash hiders. I don’t want a 5.56 in any less than a 16″ barrel. Even that is marginal, but the bag size I like won’t hold any longer of a rifle. The 7.62 tolerates shorter barrels better than the 5.56. I’d dearly love an AR-10 in about a 13″ barrel, with a telescoping stock and a suppressor. Maybe some day….
          And I go with two 20’s, two 40’s and four 30’s, plus 100 loose and 100 AP, but that’s the way of the 5.56. You need more ammo because each round is less effective.
          Oh, and a cleaning kit. I almost forgot that. No bore snakes either. An actual, sectioned SS rod. I’ve had too many cases stick from various causes, and need punching out of the chamber over the years to not have something to punch with. I just wrap the rod, brushes, patches, and chemicals in a towel and I have a whole cleaning station wherever I might be.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      The day after Clinton signed the bill, I was at my LGS waiting for it to open, and bought my first AR, which cost twice as much as it would have a month earlier. I have enjoyed it and several others far more than I expected to.

  4. avatar Johnny Go Lightly says:

    Would be nice to find out who came up with the Sunset provision. That saved our bacon. We should build a momument to him/her…..

    1. avatar Bayonne Bleeder says:

      I believe the sunset provision was negotiated by the NRA.

      1. avatar Rusty - Die Ruthie Die - Chains says:

        The Democrats had to put it in, even with it the ban only passed the house by two votes. Fast forward to now, every Democrat would vote for it and maybe a few “Republicans.”

  5. avatar Cruzo1981 says:

    Amazing how facts and statistics don’t matter to the left. It’s the same “reasoning” they’re using to dupe the uneducated left to vote for their socialism. Times are getting dark and I fear that the sun might be setting on capitalism and freedom…

  6. avatar Reason says:

    “buy ’em cheap and stack ’em deep”

    Words to live by. Stock up!!

    1. avatar Guesty McGuesterson says:

      Mags and ammo. Ammo and mags. Keep stockpiling. Here in CA, those who didn’t stock deep on ammo are in deep poo-poo now that we’re operating under our new BGC law, which is reportedly rejecting 40% of all applicants for reasons such as your DL address not matching the address you lived at when you bought/registered your handgun 15 years ago.

      Buy ammo.
      Buy mags.
      Buy parts.
      Buy now.

      1. avatar SoCalJack says:

        CA folks definitly stock up on parts to maintain your firearms…and keep prepping for a grid down senario.

  7. avatar Rick the Bear says:

    Boo! Filth! Scum! Garbage!

  8. avatar TheUnspoken says:

    I was only a kid when it was passed, so didn’t really see much about it. I only went to the range a couple times with older friends who had guns while it was active, and was confused there were still “M16” and “AK47” rifles on the wall if they were banned but I didn’t really understand anything other than just the look of the gun, which was cool to me.

    I do remember seeing some websites when it sunset and thinking getting some bit of freedom back even if I didn’t fully understand it was a good thing.

    Now that they are legal I have a few of the post ban, LE only mags for my USP.

    I do think the past ban and talk of future bans has really pushed the popularity of such guns, which preban probably weren’t too popular but are now quite common place. Bans drive demand. I will admit that my first AR lower was a Newtown response, a princely $125 for a stripped PSA at that. That is when I realized that I needed to have access to what I wanted and in decent supply as there were no guarantees for the future.

    And to fight for my rights to keep what I had.

  9. avatar Unlicensed Bozo says:

    How many of, and what Republicans (38) are still in orfice after voting for this?

  10. avatar enuf says:

    Alcohol Prohibition worked so well that Americans haven’t consumed a drop of alcohol since 1920, drunkenness vanished as a societal concern, sales of fruit juice and the drinking of wholesome milk and simple water have long been the favored beverages of Americans.

    During the Assault Weapon Ban not a single person was harmed. For ten lovely years we had a deathless nation.

    Now, for our next trick, we’ve passed a bill to require all pigs to have personal rocket packs so they can fly.

    Taxpayer supported, naturally.

    1. avatar Voldamort says:

      You forgot the part where the rocket packs will be powered by unicorn farts.
      Free, green, and brought to you by the live in a fantasy world party. Never fear reality again, because you won’t even know it exists… up until it kills you, but think of how happy you will be until we come for you…
      Signed: both political parties.

  11. avatar Dude says:

    “President Bush said he’d sign a renewal of the ban if it reached his desk.” He probably assumed it would never reach his desk, but can you imagine how people would lose their mine if Trump said this?

    1. avatar Art out West says:

      Remember that Ronald Reagan supported the Clinton ban. Clinton and Obama sucked more, but Reagan, Bush 1, and Bush 2 also sucked. Trump??

  12. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    A un Constitutional act by all involved,the then president and congress as it would be today.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Seems like signing into law a bill which is later found to be unconstitutional would be grounds for impeachment.

  13. avatar George says:

    Dangit ! Where can I buy a shirt with the pic under the caption ?

  14. avatar Shire-man says:

    I remember my “you’ll shoot your eye out” parents refusing to buy me anything before the ban. I was too young to do it myself. Then, when the ban lifted, I remember trying to buy all the cool stuff I missed out on but being denied because I lived in a slave state. Then I remember leaving the DMV with my new free state license and blowing through all the fun money I had saved at the nearest gun shop to overload on all the stuff that had been denied to me for so many years.

    1. avatar Art out West says:

      I was a broke (and gunless) college student in 94. I still remember the AWB however. PIt is one of the reasons I now own guns

  15. avatar former water walker says:

    I don’t have any AWB stories as I didn’t care at the time. No guns until 2011. NOW I care! And I really am dismayed by the puzzy defeatest attitudes I encounter. I’m too old to give up a damn thing. My town is going to he!! and I’m not getting rid of ANYTHING!

  16. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    And the Hi Point was born because of magazine size limit talks. Magazine size limits didn’t stop the columbine murderers from killing and wounding 37 people. The Hi Point uses a 9mm nine round magazine. They also used 3 other guns. One of which was a pump action shotgun.

    btw
    The adult woman who bought 3 of the guns for these underage kids was never prosecuted. Never indicted. But the man who bought the fourth gun did go to prison.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columbine_High_School_massacre

    1. avatar Alan says:

      Regarding By the way, in the above letter, if true, how come. What possible abortion of justice could have led to no prosecution of or for the woman gun buyer?

  17. avatar Tim U says:

    Bought my first rifle (that wasn’t an heirloom gift) the day it was legal and I was 18. It was an AR-15 made during the ban years. The store did business with LE departments so they had the stock already. I remember there was a “get em while you can” attitude in my local gun community because they were sure the ban would get renewed. It never came thankfully. But I learned then what could happen, and prepared accordingly for any firearm I collected in the years since. Mags: stack them deep. Especially if they hold double digit capacity.

  18. avatar Bob says:

    ONE THING No one can take away from a person is their knowledge.

    Knowing how to make them is a weapon in itself. Knowledge is real power.

  19. avatar Hannibal says:

    “the Assault Weapons Ban law had a 10-year sunset provision. It was the only way the law would have gotten the necessary Republican votes to pass at the time…” yeah thanks guys

  20. avatar Alan says:

    I personally wonder as to the following. Obviously, the battle to retain what can be described as Gun Rights is ongoing. Have the gun owners of this country realized that basic fact?

    Second question is as follows. Do the gun owners of this country have the guts, the will, the staying power to remain in the above referenced battle, possibly winning it, or will it turn out that they were to damned lazy.

    Funny thing. People that will not act in the defense of basic rights likely do not deserve those rights. Additionally, thy likely will not long have them.

  21. avatar enuf says:

    It’s true. Before the 1994 AWB I had zero interest in owning an AR-15. The idea of any rifle without a wood stock just did not fit in my head. But the ban didn’t make any sense. There were very few of these guns being bought, what was all the excitement about?

    Well, that question and my natural reaction to the Government telling me I may not own a thing, that raised my curiosity big time. By the time the ten years were over and the ban went away, I was waiting and ready to buy!

    Today I own two AR rifles, many magazines from 5 to 40 rounds (30’s mostly). EOTech 511 holographic weapon sight. Assorted accessories, tools, cleaning kit, various iron sights I’ve tried out, always have at least a thousand rounds of ammo on hand

    Just like millions of other buyers, the ban is what grabbed my interest. Had they not banned it I doubt I’d of ever bought one.

    And ow I want an AR-10.

  22. avatar Alan says:

    Regarding the election results following enactment of The Clinton Ban, how many of the gutless Republicans that voted for it’s passage were booted out? Regarding Republicans who voted for it’s passage, how did they explain or justify their gutless, senseless, cowardly vote, if they even bothered to try?

  23. avatar HEGEMON says:

    I borrowed $450 from a friend in August 1994 and bought a Chinese Norinco AK-47 pattern rifle due to the impending law. The AWB was one of the most odious laws ever passed by Congress. I don’t blame Reagan for “signing” the letter with Ford and Carter, since he was suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s at the time. I do blame Bill Ruger with being complicit with the democrats.

  24. avatar M1Lou says:

    I bought my first Saiga 7.62×39 in 2007. I had no clue the ban was even gone. I converted it of course when I found out how to do that, and have been buying stuff ever since. Well, that was up until that kayaking accident. A 1000lb safe full of guns on a 550lb max weight kayak wasn’t a good idea. Who knew?

  25. avatar MiamiC70 says:

    All this bullshit and no link to where I can buy the T-shirt.

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