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Jay Bookman of The (rather anti-gun) Atlanta Journal-Constitution has an interesting take on depravity. He believes that a web-commercial on the USAAmmo site is “The most depraved commercial (I hope) you’ll ever see”. What’s absent from his piece, however, is any sort of argument or debate about the facts presented in the video.

And there are several points he very easily could have made, starting with the fact that the “Gun control = Genocide” examples in the video are a bit weak. Yes, the Third Reich, Stalinist Russia, Maoist China, Pol Pot’s Cambodia etc., did have gun control and certainly did commit genocide. It is, however, questionable whether Hitler, Stalin, Mao, etc. established gun control in order to commit democide (the term I prefer as it is specific to a government killing its own citizens). I believe those killings were more a case of despots taking advantage of disarmament which had already occurred.

Then there’s the fact that both the George Washington quotes presented are false. The statement “The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference; they deserve a place with all that’s good. When firearms, go all goes; we need them every hour” seems to have been made up out of whole cloth.

And “A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government” is a distorted version of “A free people ought not only to be armed but disciplined; to which end a uniform and well digested plan is requisite: And their safety and interest require that they should promote such manufactories, as tend to render them independent on others, for essential, particularly for military supplies.

But Jay’s anti-gun and, like so many of his fellow grabbers, appears to eschew facts and reasoning in favor of emotion and demagoguery. He starts out with, “It’s no secret that the gun and ammo industry uses the fear of gun control to goose sales to a frightened customer base.” Hmm, I guess Jay believes that the only reason people purchase guns and ammunition is because they are afraid the government is going to try to take them away.

He doesn’t think people can calmly and soberly look at the collapse of the housing market, the bailouts, the stock market crash, rising unemployment, the recession and ballooning federal debt and decide that they should take steps to defend themselves and their loved ones. Perhaps he wasn’t paying attention to recent events across the pond. Or thinks the violent protests, the riots, the looting and the arson will stay on the TV screen and not wind up Occupying city centers across the country.

In his very next sentence Jay writes, “As Barack Obama prepared to take office, for example, rumors began spreading that he was about to issue an executive order banning handgun sales and even banning sale of ammunition, which then led to shortages of ammunition on the shelves, which was then cited as evidence that the ammunition ban was coming true.” Now I have been working for and the Second Amendment Foundation collecting news stories for years. If you Google my name (in quotes, “Bruce W. Krafft”) you will get something in excess of a half-million hits, and yes most of them are going to really be me.

The point is, I’ve been around and I pay attention to civil rights issues, especially gun rights issues, and I’ve never heard a single (serious) claim that President Obama was going to try to ban handguns (or ammo) via Executive Order as soon as he got into office. There was concern that his campaign, transition and White House websites all talked about renewing the AWB, mandating childproof guns and getting rid of private gun sales (a.k.a. the eeeee-vil gun-show loophole), but nothing about outright handgun or ammunition bans.

The shortages of ammunition Jay refers to were due mainly to huge increases in law enforcement consumption post 9/11 and actually started becoming acute for the first time around August of 2007, not 15 to 18 months later. There actually was another shortage during the period of Obama’s election through his inauguration but again, that was mainly caused by increased law enforcement demand and was exacerbated by people who had been through the 2007 shortage and so were cleaning stores out any time they saw ammunition in stock.

Adding to the problem, the DoD announced that they’d begin shredding once-fired brass for scrap instead of selling it for reloading. Admittedly, that decision was quickly reversed, but the news sent shock-waves through the industry and was taken by some as evidence that Obama was indeed trying to choke off the ammunition supply. These, however, are all demonstrable facts, not the runaway paranoid speculation that Jay claims.

Then Jay charges that USAAmmo “appropriates genocide as just another tool to sell more guns and ammo to the already paranoid.” Is he perhaps saying that these populations were not disarmed? No, Jay is just taking the opportunity to malign a company he doesn’t like and call gun-owners names. I don’t think anyone with a working brain (or even Jay for that matter) actually believes that Obama is preparing for democide. Jay’s just setting us up for the next sentence: “I doubt that you have ever witnessed a more twisted, sick commercial advertisement than this one.” Again with the name-calling, and again with the complete avoidance of any sort of facts or reality-based objections to the content of the commercial.

I should thank Jay for providing us with a brilliant example of the anti-gun mentality: hyperbole and emotionalism secure in its rectitude and completely untainted by reasoning, logic or evidence.

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  1. “I should thank Jay for providing us with a brilliant example of the anti-gun mentality: hyperbole and emotionalism secure in its rectitude and completely untainted by reasoning, logic or evidence.”

    Precisely why I think it’s a good thing that TTAG continues to not only link to anti-gun pieces but allows anti-gun commentors to post here.

  2. The fact that the video is from some one who has a vested interest in selling firearms and ammunition does not make them seem unbiased. Just sayin’.

  3. I appreciate your very calm and well-written post. At the same time, the USAAmmo web commercial was juvenile, poorly researched, and even more poorly executed. It did the second amendment cause no good at all. Frankly, we’d all be better off if we condemned it as a good example of what you very neatly condemn in your last paragraph as the typical anti-gun mentality: “…hyperbole and emotionalism secure in its rectitude and completely untainted by reasoning, logic or evidence.”

    I am a second amendment supporter with a CCH permit and a .38 in my pocket. But, we ought to be able to condemn those who are ostensibly in our camp, yet who go over the top and embarrass us. It does us no damage to condemn such things. It would frankly do us some good – it would tell all the world (supporters, opponents, and “on the fence” alike) that we are not knee-jerk or tribalistic, but instead are sound and reasonable people who will call things for what they are.

    If an anti-gun commercial played so fast and loose with the words of our first president, most of the members here would be frothing at the mouth. We ought to be more objective. The ends do not always justify the means.

    • +10

      Gun people do things that are counter to our cause every single day. And fear based campaigns that scream about genocide and then…have advertisements for guns at the end? That they sell?

      Yeah. The word “Tacky” springs to mind.

    • +1.

      Also, the reference to the Occupy Movement (ie., you might need to defend yourself those unwashed unruly unarmed masses) is a bit sinister. Regardless of your feelings about the Occupy thing, it has not posed much of a threat to life, limb, or property (well, maybe a little bit of property), so let’s not start shooting just yet.

      Finally, fear is a big factor in sales of guns and ammunition. It may be a rational fear, but it is fear. I feel it myself. I plan to by an Evil Black Rifle and a hi-cap handgun as soon as funds permit, even though I have no immediate need for either. Just in case, right?

      But that ad is an embarrassment. If the facts are on your side, you don’t need to throw grenades like that.

      • Some in Oakland would disagree with you on the collateral damage. While our tent dwelling brothers didn’t burn the mission down, they advocated for a civil unrest.

        And as they say, the night is still young.

  4. I’m waiting for the day when the pros and antis stop yelling at each other and sit down for a good fact based discussion. Emotional arguments are going to kill America (and not just in the realm of firearms).

    • +25I am quite frankly, exhausted, from all the partisan arguments and emotional stances taken by people on almost ANY subject. If the words:

      “Those dam liberals”


      “Those bible thumping conservatives”

      acts as the preface or a regular noun in any statement you make, your likely just a mouth piece for a political party and an agenda.

  5. The google query “Bruce W. Krafft” only gives 114 results. FYI, google lies when you first search, if you go to the last page of results, it will tell you the real number.“Bruce+W.+Krafft”&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8#q=“Bruce+W.+Krafft”&hl=en&client=safari&rls=en&prmd=imvnso&ei=McTeTrmdBY7W2wXF2biwBQ&start=110&sa=N&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.,cf.osb&fp=e26818a76d3ae72&biw=1680&bih=928

    Even if you include duplicate results, there are only ~600.“Bruce+W.+Krafft”&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8#q=“Bruce+W.+Krafft”&hl=en&client=safari&rls=en&prmd=imvnso&ei=QMXeTrWEA-a42wXjscCSBQ&start=590&sa=N&filter=0&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.,cf.osb&fp=e26818a76d3ae72&biw=1680&bih=928

  6. Despite the over-simplifications and inaccuracies in the video, younger people might consider the examples (almost literally) ancient history, and that those things can’t happen now in a modern, “civilized” World.

    The video should have ended with what is happening right now, today, every day, day after day in Syria. All people need is a fighting chance. Free people want nothing more and deserve nothing less.

  7. I can see USAAmmo and George Washinton are on my wave length. Did I ever mention that I have 2 known Revolutionary War Ancestors who fought along side George Washington?


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