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The People of the Gun consider the Hearing Protection Act low-hanging legislative fruit. Who could oppose a bill making it easier for American to protect their hearing with suppressors? Gun control advocates, of course! Because guns. OK, they do have some logic . . .

First, lets give ARS credit for reducing their opposition to HPA to a meme and a tweet, rather than a position paper or press release. While I suspect those are forthcoming, if you can’t lay out your case in 140 characters of less, why bother? Now . . .

According to the Mark Kelley/Gabby Gifford’s Axis of Evil Americans for Final Responsible Solutions, removing barriers to suppressor ownership would make it easier for active shooters to kill people inflict serious harm on our communities without being detected by trained (trained, I tell you!) law enforcement officials.

Huh. And there I was thinking the antis would go all “gang bangers wouldn’t be loud enough to get caught” (as if they ever are) on the bill.

I suppose ARS’s marketing mavens considered that idea racist — suggesting as it does that gang bangers are (at least potentially) sophisticated super-assassins, rather than innocent victims of their upbringing and the cold-hearted capitalist system. Wait. Is it racist to suggest they aren’t?

Anyway, the idea that active shooters using suppressed weapons would be too silent for trained law enforcement professionals (trained, I tell you!) is more than a little loopy. Even if Hollywood has done a great job engendering that belief.

While I wonder about untrained law enforcement professionals, I’m thinking the sounds of people screaming and dying would be enough to draw the attention of trained law enforcement professionals. Or people who aren’t trained law enforcement professionals, being as history tells us that there are virtually never cops within earshot when a spree killing starts (i.e., Ms. Giffords).

But what are we, indeed anyone, to make of their tweet “Silencers do not protect your hearing”? If suppressors make a gun so quiet that trained law enforcement professionals can’t hear them, how could they NOT protect your hearing?

Silencers are too silent! Silencers don’t protect your hearing! Wear ear plugs when active shooters attack! Yeah, I don’t think the civilian disarmament industrial complex really knows how to play this one.

Their argument against hassle-free suppressor purchases should be . . . Did you hear that? I whispered it. Not even trained law enforcement professionals heard it. I’m so bad.

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  1. I was never that crazy about the name of the “Act.” It should have been called the “silencer normalization act” or somesuch, even though they do protect hearing.
    That said, what they are claiming is preposterous – if they don’t protect hearing, then they obviously still make enough of a report to be easily heard by law enforcement.

    • Not a bad point. They chose to lead with the hearing protection aspect, so be it, but that’s a utilitarian point and can be argued as such. I’d be called a crank if I said it all had to be done, out front, as a matter of pure principle. But the gun side should realize we have the philosophical high ground, and forays into utilitarianism should be kept quick and safe. Smash and grab, get bad laws out of the books then go back to the high ground that it has all, always been our natural right.

    • Should have been called “Dog hearing protection act”. If you don’t support the act, that means you hate dogs. And that’s just unAmerican.

    • Agreed! The name is as silly as “S.446 – Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017”

    • “hearing protection act” is a name that is more easily accepted to the public than “silencer normalization act”. Kind of like “common sense” gun control, instead of “gun registry” act is more appealing to the masses. I wish some of these people would go to a indoor range and hear for themselves just how silent a medium bore handgun is with a silencer is. like my 44mag or as far as that goes my M44 russian is real loud, and i’m sure these would still hurt with sound supressors

  2. Mark Kelly is a total, despicable, individual. A person who becomes a US astronaut and does not understand the engineering of a baffle/silencer/suppressor should be required to re-pay the nation for his navy service, pilot training, astronaut training, and forfeit his pension. Not only is this idiot incompetent concerning guns, he lacks a moral compass. Case in poinit: Not long after his wife was shot in the head, before she recovered even half of the capability she displays today, Kelly just had to, just had to, fly on the shuttle again (keeping someone from making even their first flight) while she was still in a fragile physical and mental condition (the fact she approved Kelly’s flight tells you how much her judgement was impaired).

    I am not an engineer, could not pass the astronaut physical, however….as a youngster of 13, I fired my first revolver (uncle’s gun). Even though I was familiar with the TV and movie depiction of silencers (especially revolvers), I immediately recognized that with blast exiting between the barrel and cylindar, that sound would not go through a silencer. The implicaiton was clear, for revolvers. Took a few years to come to grips with the semi-auto, because I was thinking that if all the blast and sound stayed in the chamber and barrel, then the sound would all go through the silencer, and leave one only hearing the metallic sound of the cycling of the gun (pistol or rifle). Much later, a trip to the range with a buddy who had a silencer let me know quickly that guns are just loud, loud.

    But, reality is what you wish to believe these days, so children and adults alike are quite certain that guns with silencers go “pppffftttt”, and cannot be heard outside a room, or car. Or even across the street.

    • “Kelly just had to, just had to, fly on the shuttle again…”

      There is one reason he was assigned that flight, NASA considered him the best choice for that mission.

      He accepted that mission *long* before Giffords was shot.

      Kelly was Hornet driver in the Navy. The spouses of service members know full well when when they marry them, the mission comes *first*.

      That can be a bit difficult for non-military folks to wrap their heads around…

      • “…the mission comes *first*.

        Only combat, only when your wife or children have not just been shot. NASA always has a primary backup astronaut ready to go, who is just as qualified. NASA “missions” are not the military. Kelly could have deferred with no consequence, no dishonor.

        And yes, I have the combat missions and lost family to show for “mission first”.

        BTW, my main point was/is Kelly swindled the country if he went through all that training and is too ignorant to understand silencers. Dumb, I reckon.

        • He understands them fully. He thinks that J. Random Voter does not, and is using that to accrue power to himself without merit.

        • Kelly is exactly what you’d expect, a dumbass and a liar! NASA is the biggest lie on the planet, They’ve been bilking the US tax payer for billions every year claiming to be doing space exploration. It’s already been shown that the entire apollo moon landings NEVER happened. Want proof? NASA even admits it without realizing it. Kelly is a LIAR and a con artist.

      • Geoff,

        Concur with your comment about mission. One small quibble. Kelly may have flown the F-18 at Test Pilot School, but he was an A-6 driver in the fleet. Never had an operational tour with Hornets.

        He was a nugget (first tour guy) in VA-115 who arrived aboard the USS Midway a few months before I left my department head tour. He was in the combat strike group I led and green as grass.

        Very disappointed in him and his anti-gun stance. You’d think that he might realize that several folks who had concealed carry licenses went to Gifford’s aid and disarmed the loony who shot her. IMHO, if the guy didn’t have a gun, he might have gone after her with a hatchet or a knife, like they do in Japan and other bastions of gun control.

        • Thanks for the correction!

          Now I *almost* feel sorry for Kelly. The A-6 has got be one of the most hideous aircraft ever built.

          (The capabilities of the ‘Growler’ version offset that…)

      • If *he* had been shot in the head, he would have been replaced before he hit the ground. The mission had nothing to do with it. Good as I was, there *might* have been one mission for which I was irreplaceable, and it was not one where I was never required to touch the controls, as was the mission in question here.

        • “….and it was not one where I was never required to touch the controls, as was the mission in question here.”

          Indeed. I forgot that point.

          Game. Set. Match.

    • We really need to stop being so charitable to these tyranny-enabling traitors by accusing them of idiocy and incompetence. They know full well that they are spouting lies. They are lying statists who seek control of their fellow men. Our Founders had a few ways to deal with such fellows. They involved stout hearts, fine rifles, and stout ropes.

    • It is more likely imo that kelly is lying because of ideology or that he is caught in some deal with the devil. When these gun control groups are resorting to lies, deliberate mistatements and arguments to distract from facts and centerpiece false emotional arguments and outright fear mongering it is not by mistake. Big money is being spent on pr people to run these campaigns of deception. For a long time the self named afrs was hosted by a self righeous propaganda pr firm for progressives. A firm that was founded by the progressive take no prisoners extremist Howard Dean. In essence it is a fabrication manufacturer. It is likely they are still pulling the strings of this propaganda puppet organization.

  3. I enjoyed the part where they contradicted themselves. “They don’t protect hearing! They are too quiet!” Still chuckling over that.

  4. If Giffords had not put the “interests” of illegal aliens above the interests of American citizens, she would never have been attacked. Politicians who don’t put their constituent citizens first are inviting trouble.

    • Not to mention that federal, state, or local, they violate their oaths of office.

      The California Constitution includes a section covering the oath of office taken by all public servants. It says, that the oath taker will protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California (note that the federal constitution is first) against all enemies foreign and domestic.

      I have yet to understand why some form of legal action against such people as Kamala Harris, Feinstein, Gavin Newsom, Moonbeam Brown, for violating their oaths of office.

    • Giffords and the people around her were attacked by a crackpot with well known mental and drug problems. The community college he attended suspended him after he acted out and refused to readmit him without a clean bill of health from a psychiatrist. What they should have done was prosecute him. That would have forced the judicial system to take official notice of his condition and force him into treatment. Instead, the college pushed him off campus so that whatever he did next would be someone else’s problem. James Holmes, the Aurora theater shooter, is another example.

  5. How often are active shooters actually “detected” by law enforcement by the sound of distant gunshots, as opposed by eyewitnesses calling 911?

    • Yeah, BS. That said, it could make it difficult to act on those calls- national active shooter training tells officers to move towards the gunfire at all costs if the bad guy is still shooting and it can be harder to locate someone with a suppressor. None of this nuance will make any sense to people running that campaign, though- and the chance of it being an issue is still vanishingly small, particularly since someone can make one themselves pretty easily if they’re willing to break the law.

      And if they hadn’t worked so hard to make it impossible or very expensive to get suppressors this act wouldn’t be important anyway. Let’s be honest, if you could go to your LGS, pass a background check and buy one without going through the ridiculous system they set up to make it a pain, people would probably just do that.

      • “national active shooter training tells officers to move towards the gunfire at all costs if the bad guy is still shooting”

        Yeah, right. So what happened, for example, at the Pulse nightclub, for 3 hours, while they waited outside listening to hundreds of gunshots while people were murdered, without lifting a damn finger to save those inside who were forcibly disarmed because “the police would protect them”? While kept very quiet, I believe that Sandy Hook was similar, cops waiting right outside while a madman murdered children.

        • “I believe that Sandy Hook was similar, cops waiting right outside while a madman murdered children.”

          Looking back to the first mass shooting, which I remember as San Diego (although the post office incident might have been first), the police arrived and say a person walking around inside the McDonalds. Cops waited quite some time trying to figure out if the person walking around was the shooter, or an innocent controlled by the shooter, as a decoy. Same happened years later in the Luby’s shooting.

          There is an understandable hesitation to rush the scene and generate more casualties. However, there seems to be no accepted time period before taking the risk. Pulse was horrific because police tried to draw a bright line between active shooter and a hostage situation (SWAT.) And then it was worsened by the hesitation of SWAT to actually breach the building (not including the botched attempt). Maybe there really is not way to correctly respond.

          BTW, as to armed patrons at Pulse effectively stopping the killings, I have my mind right. It is indisputable that if patrons had been armed, the number of deaths would have been greater, and the shooter likely to have escaped, or survived !


  6. They lost it with “trained law enforcement officials” most non cops who shoot regularly and takes a training class or two, can shoot better then most police.Not to mention, so they want the cops to go def?

    • “Trained Law Enforcement” may not know what they’re hearing (TTAG company excepted). Not that they’re really aware of much unless it’s badge-bunnies, workin’ out brah!, or doing what they have to in order to meet their quota performance goals.

      (I kid, I kid. Sorta…)

  7. I’m not surprised. Silencers/suppressors have a lot of nonsensical BS that surrounds them. I argued with a guy on another website who said that no suppressor for .45ACP is quiet enough and so they’re not worth having unless you install wipes.

    Um… OK, how would one install wipes on a sealed can? Oh, and that suggestion is flat out illegal to boot.

    I’ve also had people at the range tell me, not ask, TELL me (and everyone else) that silencers are illegal and that I was committing crimes by having them. I simply told them that if they were so sure it was illegal they should call the cops and probably inform the range staff of all the “crimes” I was committing on their property and with their knowledge.

    This is just one of those things that you kind of have to accept that most people who will comment on the topic know exactly nothing about it.

      • Some sileceners run on “wipes”. They’re little rubber bits with an X or cross cut in them the size of the bullet that’s meant to pass through them. Like baffles they slow the expansion of gas to reduce the report of the gun. They’re used, generally, to reduce the OAL of the suppressor for certain applications but they don’t last long (10-12 shots in a 9mm in common).

        If a suppressor is meant to run with wipes then you can buy extras and replace them as needed and there is no legal problem there. Knights Armament made a can that ran on wipes and GemTech has made a few. Adding them to a suppressor that isn’t meant to have them requires that you have an SOT license because unlicensed end user modification of the working bits of NFA gear is illegal, at least in terms of a suppressor. You can’t just decide that it’s “not quiet enough” and make it more quiet unless the way you do it (like say adding water to it) is within the design specs.

  8. When your objection is to the firearms themselves, any excuse is sufficient.

    Ear plugs only cut down sound entering via the ear canal. Muffs are better because they cut down on bone conduction, too. Although suppressors help, they aren’t enough to eliminate the need for hearing protection. They do make outdoor ranges less of a nuisance for the neighbors. Suppressors do nothing to reduce the sonic boom from supersonic bullets. They work best, for shooters and neighbors, with subsonic handgun cartridges.

    • Not to be too pendantic and fussy, it’s less of a sonic “boom” than it is of a supersonic “crack”. Short, sharp and surprisingly loud. Having worked more than a few NRA High Power Matches in the pits pulling targets, I can attest that supersonic rounds, even at 600 yards, are quite loud. That such an itty bitty thing can make such a loud noise is quite surprising for the uninitiated.

      • Not so surprising when you consider that the bullet is only a few hundred feet away while a supersonic aircraft operates at tens of thousands of feet altitude.

        • Pits that I worked, the BBs were 6 feet overhead. Deafening when the rifle is 1000 yards away, trust me.

  9. Because all criminals in the hood are going to switch to subsonic .45 or 9mm, put a can on their gat, and start shooting.

    Crap. Just wait until the first guy uses .300 Blackout and a can. Bastard!

  10. Gabby Giffords has always been nothing more than a social parasite. I guess that Kelley caught the bug from her.

  11. The systems put in place in some cities to pinpoint gunfire might not be able to pick up all suppressed weapons. A small caliber handgun with a supressor is no louder that a car backfire with good muffler/s. So they do have a point there.

    Most crimes with firearms are not done with .22/.25/.32 cal handguns. Like most people who carry, they want a firearm that will keep someone down.
    They won’t be using small caliber firearms and with medium to large caliber handguns, the suppresor makes the handgun too large to hide. This is more about control of the population and the villification of firearms.

    Most people any more do not like cigarette smoke, loud cars, they really hate loud motorcycles, and are learning to hate guns. If guns were able to be quieted down, maybe they wonldn’t hate them so, and the gun grabbers can’t abide that.

    • In my opinion, much of the objection to firearms is a philosophical objection to using force to resist violent criminals. Better to surrender your own life than to take the life of the criminal. If you get into a discussion with an anti-gunner, I suggest you tell him, “I can get by with a baseball bat instead of a gun. Anyone who breaks into my home will be easy to identify. He will be the one with a broken jaw and no more teeth.” I’ll bet the anti-gunner won’t be happy with that either.

    • Well, those shot-spotter systems already don’t work AT ALL, so no change there. All they can do is act as a 9-11 caller, and the false positive rate is so high that most PD’s just started to ignore them pretty fast.

    • Living in Austin, I got to attend the last F1 race with naturally aspirated cars, almost unbelievably loud, and then the first one with turbocharged cars (turbos have a muffling effect), a vast improvement, the neighbors to the track are MUCH happier.

  12. What I love about the ad is the implication that a bunch of “active shooters” got together and did the political legwork necessary to introduce a bill in Congress to make it easier for them to inflict harm on our communities. I guess we’ll be hearing a lot more about the “active shooter lobby” in the days to come…

    • ” “it’s legal to hunt humans with 15-round, 30-round, even 150-round magazines.”

      Yup, that’s what they think. The Active Shooter lobby keeps it legal to hunt humans…

    • It is my impression that this is exactly what the anti gun groups think of all gun owners. I have had people say right to my face that because I own, and enjoy using guns recreationally, that I am a complicit in every murder and violent crime. Naturally, I inform them that I am not and that I resent the implication. I have, however, come to conclude that for many, this is indeed their world view. Their “logic” goes something like this:

      Hurting people is bad (true)
      Some people are hurt by others with guns (true)
      Therefore, guns are bad (hmm, bit of a flaw in the thought process here)
      People with guns (which are bad) are, therefore bad (full on fail in logic at this point)
      Conclusion: Anyone who supports gun rights or the reduction of regulations surrounding guns supports bad people who commit crimes with guns.

      I don’t get how anyone can have that thought process but it sure appears to me that it is the way some do in fact think.

  13. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–the HPA will fail because it is too easy to argue against. This campaign shows it perfectly. They float two arguments: 1) it’s not effective at protecting hearing and 2) the HPA would allow bad guys to evade detection more easily. The first point is obviously a red herring just to get panties in a twist (witness most of the comments here) and get us to admit that suppressors really DO make guns quieter. And that plays into the second point where they say quieter guns will make it harder for law enforcement respond to shootings immediately after they occur.

    See what they did?–we’re so busy being so smug here thinking that their argument makes zero sense, when what it does is get us (again, witness the comment here) to argue that suppressors make fore quieter shooting. And this point is going to be the real deal breaker for anyone coming into this debate w/o a pre-formed opinion.

    • Interesting. You lay out a troubling possibility.

      I never thought to give gun grabbers credit for being subtle. Didn’t think they had the actual brain power. Need to rethink my assumption.

    • I refer people to the OSHA decibel chart as a guideline when I talk about suppressors. Using the chart, and citing everyday examples, I feel it makes it easier to show just how loud things still are with the suppressor(dB levels for normal conversation, lawn mowers and jet engines). I also follow up with how we just want to be able to buy them without having to pay an extra $200 tax and wait 8 months to actually be able to use them.

      All else fails, tell them it’s what they do in the EU/UK/AUS. When you get your gun over there, suppressors are available to take home, that day, should the buyer choose to have one for his gun. From what I’ve read, some consider it rude to NOT use a suppressor to hunt with.
      So, basically, it’s a European/Australian gun law that we gun owners would actually like to see get passed here in the US.

    • In order to protect hearing, yes, we need to decrease the noise. Duh! Did you have something intelligent to say, as well?

  14. Okay, since nobody at ARS is capable of thinking this through, let me spell it out.

    Yes, earplugs protect the shooter’s hearing. But the HPA protects the INNOCENT’s hearing.

    Say her husband’s not at home; the wife is asleep when she’s awoken to a smashing window and noises downstairs. She can put on her earplugs and grab her shotgun to face down the intruder — but if she fires it, a shotgun blast inside is so astonishingly loud she may very well deafen her baby and her other little kids. Who’s protecting the children? The HPA, you dumbasses!

    Say you’re getting carjacked — and your wife and kids are in the car, and their lives are in definite peril. You pull and fire. Who has earplugs on in that case? Not you, not your wife, not your kids in the back, not your baby. A gunshot inside a car is probably one of the loudest, most hearing-damaging things anyone could ever encounter. Is there anything possible that could have saved that baby’s hearing? Why, the HPA could have!

    If it saves just one baby’s hearing… isn’t it worth it? Hell YES it’s worth it!

  15. We are lucky that these idiots don’t want to require that all handguns be equipped with an effective suppressor which as we all know must be too large to holster and carry concealed.
    So much for Saturday Night Specials which refers to South Chicago any day or night of the week.
    It is just simple for these people… they can find anything as evil if it has any utility.

  16. Just use suspenders AND a belt, what is wrong with that, the superstore and the plugs.

  17. Democrats aren’t dumb. They know how incrementalism works because they have been doing it for years. They know that if we start to roll back small federal gun laws that we will eventually go after the big ones and completely thwart their gun confiscation plans.

    Just look at concealed carry. More and more states are going to constitutional carry and their house of cards is starting to crumble. They are scared shitless of our growing push to take out federal gun control laws.

  18. Shooter illegally obtains gun.
    Shooter illegally kills people.

    It’s a good thing we have laws to prevent both. And bonus round, feel free to offer up an instance and statistics of illegal suppressor use in a crime.

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