Orange you glad I didn't say banana? (courtesy
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I’m gonna credit Mike “The Gun Guy” Weisser for this one. The Massachusetts gun dealer (go figure) was the first proponent of re-branding “gun control” as “gun violence prevention.” While I’ve yet to see anyone use his favored acronym (GVP), “gun violence prevention” has officially replaced “gun safety” and the totally lame “gun reform” as the most recent nom de guerre for gun control. We know this because . . .

I just got an email from Keith Ellison. The Deputy Chair of the Democratic National Committee wants me to take a survey “to let us know what issues are important to you.” Here’s the top of the list:

DNC survey 1.16.18

FWIW I reckon that’s the order of priority for the issues the Democrats are targeting for the midterms.

And while I’d love to see the results of this survey, I don’t think I will. But I do expect to see the term “gun violence prevention” become the gun control/civilian disarmament euphemism du jour in the mainstream media. Because fake news.

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    • Be careful, you’re making too much sense and I am pretty sure such things as logic and reason confound and (further) emotionally confuse the liberal masses.

    • We need to take ownership of this dialog. Seize it from them and make the media use our terms:
      Gun control = Gun Owner control
      Gun violence prevention = gun ownership prevention
      Gun control advocate = bigot

      Never pass up an opportunity to correct someone in these conversations – do not allow the bigots euphemisms to go unchallenged.

      • We’ll never be able to make the media use terms that aren’t slanted against us. Won’t happen.

        But you’re right about the rest.

        The progress we’ve made in public opinion over the last 10-15 years has been entirely due to the rise of social media. People see gun owners everywhere, not just in the legacy media establishment — and it’s obvious to everyone who can use their brain that we’re normal, peaceful, responsible folks. We argue with passion AND facts on our side.

        It’s also apparent to an ever-increasing number of people that their formerly trusted news sources are pushing fake news about people they know personally. The more they hear the truth about guns (I feel like there’s a slogan in there somewhere) from people they trust, the more lies and omissions they’ll spot. The cognitive dissonance is real, and it’s our best ally.

        So let’s go forth, and let no Orwellian euphemism go unchallenged!

        • We should never give them control of language. Obviously the left is winning in the propaganda front, as they more or less control our language. Case in point, how many pro-gun folks use terms like “silencer” or the egregious, blasphemous term “assault rifle”? Seriously, how can any person who considers themselves pro-gun use such a term? Yet many do. Normally I’m content to let people use whatever words they want, as long as I know what they mean. But in this case, we must always correct people on their use of language…it is one of the few things more powerful than arms. Never will the national, MSM use terms that we consider appropriate or correct, because in so doing, they admit defeat and/or normalization.

        • Apparently there were social media titans in attendance before congressional committee concerned with reducing the influence of radical Islam and other terrorists. The titans promised to use their super secret magic formulas to rid the internet of violence, violent speech, violent images. That got big smiles from the committee. Of course, the titans did not explain to the committee that those super secret magic formulas have been in place for quite awhile, removing conservative, patriotic, pro-America, pro-gun postings and channels. Social media is being taken completely away from us, and now has the blessings of an official government committee. Any bets on the future?

          If POTG do not know how they are being frozen out of wide audiences, it is indicative of our lack of mental agility. That, and the fact the enemies of social media have no clue how to counter.

  1. None of my guns have been violent. They must be broken.

    I do have a hammer that is guilty of hammer violence. Hit constantly goes around hitting things.

    Come to thing about it, I think I have a knife violence problem too.

    • Cutting firewood today; noticed the head of my splitting maul is cracked and loose – it may be about to commit an act of violence against whatever gets in it’s way when it finally gives out.

    • Hell, my own hammer has repeatedly struck flesh of its own accord! I’ve lost so much finger blood due to that horrific contraption. Somebody should ban them! For the children!

  2. I still want to know why these people think gun violence is any different than other forms of violence. Even in the U.S. more people are murdered by non gun means than with guns.

      • Incorrect, the FBI includes justifiable homicides in their statistics of which there are approximately 1500 police and civilian gun related justifiable homicides per year. Bringing the total gun MURDERS to about 7000-7500, less than half. That’s why I specified MURDERS and not HOMICIDES. There are less than 200 justifiable homicides not using guns per year, so more than half of MURDERS are committed by means other than guns.

        • Update, my math was wrong. I forgot to take the justifiable homicides out of the total, so I am incorrect. In 2014 it was just over half. In 2016 (17200 ish total homicides) it was just under half.

        • Also consider that any homicide committed with a gun goes into the “murder with a gun” areas, regardless of the outcome of any investigation/prosecution. Mainly because the FBI gets their data from the states, who very seldom bother to make any changes after investigation/prosecution, even if the “perp” is exonerated.
          Statistics lie for many reasons.

    • The true fact that people are going for when they cite this incorrect statistic is that more people are killed by non-gun means than are killed with rifles or other long guns, and by a huge margin. While guns do account for the majority of homicides, the vast majority of homicides committed with guns are committed with handguns.

  3. Alinsky probably ripped off Orwell when he said, ““He who controls the language controls the masses.” Of course, Orwell probably meant it as a cautionary note against authoritarianism. Alinsky, as an instruction manual for Stalin wannabes.

    • Orwell certainly meant it as a caution. He hated communism and totalitarian government (thus 1984 and Big Brother; if you ever want to be depressed about where we’ve been and where we could be headed, read that book).

      • Back in the day (flower children, free love, power to the people), universities were pushing Orwell as anti-capitalist, anti-conformist, anti-tradition, anti-whatever. Orwell was taught as the consummate socialist, anarchist, leftist, anti-government radical. “Big Brother” represented authority, rules, structure, lack of freedom from responsibility.

        P.S. The universities were completely wrong, but they raised a generation of intolerant acolytes. Who raised another generation, and another, and so on.

        • This is blatantly untrue. Orwell was a democratic socialist.

          “Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic socialism, as I understand it.”

          Orwell, George (1968) [1958]. Bott, George, ed. Selected Writings. London: Heinemann. p. 103. ISBN 0-435-13675-5.

        • Doesn’t change history.

          The universities did not teach Orwell, they taught his writings as they saw fit.

        • What, so you’re complaining they taught him as an anti-authoritarian socialist in the face of evidence that he was an anti-authoritarian socialist? I’m not one, but I just hate seeing Orwell lionized by any toad who reads his own meaning into it.

        • Orwell was writing in critique of the leftward drift of England. The US universities used his writings as anti-right wing. The government of England was nowhere near right wing.

          You cannot be anti-authoritarian socialist. Socialism requires strong, intrusive government to enforce all the social good. It is no coincidence that Stalin and Hitler were both socialists.

        • Why should I listen to you when you’re not grounding your argument in Orwell’s writing? You’re just… saying things. Your quibble with the semantics of authoritarianism is entirely besides the point.

        • Don’t “listen” (read). You have an off button on your device. You have a delete function regarding each of these postings and comments.

        • Yes, very convincing. I wish closing my browser could erase from my memory the manifold brands of idiocy paraded about in TTAG comment sections. Fortunately, bourbon exists.

    • Gun control is most certainly tyranny and for decades this country has been slipping down that slippery slope to socialism. We are a country inhabited by foreigners, and I don’t mean in the literal, global, legal sense. Being an American has almost superseded nationality, it is no longer just a birthright, but also a state of being or mind…and too many inhabitants of this country are not “American”, and I hate to use quotation marks, but feel compelled to. And so many of these un-American Americans have been elected to office in this country by “victims”, special interest groups, imported voters and just about any subsection of the American public. What do you expect? What will it lead to?

  4. None of my guns are violent. Well maybe my type 99 is a a little violent to shoot because that steel butt plate doesn’t feel great depending on where it ends up sitting on my shoulder. Yeah we could find a way to prevent that… I’m in!

      • Good call. Not sure I could bring myself to modify grandpa’s bringback type 99 though. I guess I’ll just bask in the violence.

  5. Does gun control work, yes or no?


    There have been almost no crimes committed with “machine guns” since 1935. “Machine guns” are not banned, but tightly regulated. It would seem that severe restrictions do lower the incidence of “gun violence”.

    Not taking the position that gun control is constitutional, merely pointing out that we cannot claim gun control is useless when faced with the firearms act of 1934, regarding “machine guns”.

    “Gun control” may be many things, but when properly structured and enforced, the result cannot be ignored.

    POTG need to drop the idea that “gun control” is useless on the whole. We need to be more imaginative about the other failings.

    • You are mistaken. ILLEGAL machine guns are still used to commit crimes frequently. There have only been two times since 1934 that LEGALLY owned machine guns were used and one of those was by a deputy sheriff. The “regulation” of which you speak simply made it possible to track this and see that law abiding citizens who own machine guns do not commit violent crime and they still would not have with out the NFA of 1934. They did not commit crimes with their machine guns before the NFA and still do not ever since.

      • “ILLEGAL machine guns are still used to commit crimes frequently. ”

        Source citation, please.

        Compared to non machine guns, the incidence of crimes committed by anyone using a machine gun is quite rare.

        Which was my point.

        • “Source citation please” More like source citation now. What a load of crap. And to indulge your claim, so what? Because some A-hole commits a crime with an illegally owned automatic weapon (says you), everyone else in America must be tightly regulated? It burned me to no end when teacher punished us all for one person in school…as a man only more so. Besides, I’d rather have a brand new semi-auto rifle for $600 vs. a 50 year old shot out automatic for $12000.

        • If you are going to claim that illegally owned machine guns are frequently used to commit crimes, a source of your statement is required.

          Second, you may want to consider demanding a refund of the money spent teaching you reading and comprehension skills. You missed the point grossly, and entirely.

        • You overlook that the supply of new machine guns available to the public was not capped in 1934, but continued to increase until 1986, including many war trophies that never made it into the national ATF database, especially during the Viet Nam War era. And the price of machine guns did not skyrocket until after FOPA. But even with all of those additional automatic weapons, there was a continued dearth of murders in which such weapons were employed. As has been said here many times, correlation does not equal causation. Further, although it is undoubtedly true that criminals stopped buying machine guns when the background check and fee went into effect, another related circumstance was the end of Prohibition, which greatly impacted the use of smugglers and gangs to import booze, and consequently greatly reduced gang warfare (which was the true intent of the law).

        • All of which underlines that the 1934 GCA worked….as regards machine guns, and machine guns only.

          Nothing more implied.

        • “All of which underlines that the 1934 GCA worked….as regards machine guns, and machine guns only.”

          Define “worked.”
          If you mean it did what the act said it would do, limit the number of machine guns in the possession of civilians, yes it did that, and thus worked.
          However, it must be noted that it was prohibition that greatly increased the use of automatic weapons in the US, and for the most part, it was felon-on-felon shooting.
          Since prohibition was repealed, such shootings came to an abrupt halt. Since prohibition ended in 1933, it is specious to say the GCA halted such shootings, because the GCA made no provisions for somehow rounding up all the machine guns already in circulation.
          The North Hollywood bank heist is one of the few machine gun uses in crime, but a spectacular one.
          Machine guns make very poor crime guns, anyway. They are very hard to control, eat ammo at a prodigious rate, and deafen all nearby people (including the shooter). Even criminals, who are stupid to begin with, know better to use a weapon that’s unsuited to the task. How many crimes do you see reported where someone used a sword to threaten someone?

        • Another thought on this whole issue of whether the NFA worked. I’d say it did work. It reduced the number of regulated/banned items. That was the goal. It happened.

          Did it reduce violence, or even “gun violence?” Probably not. Who cares if it reduced “machine gun violence” if it didn’t reduce violence and/or “gun violence?”

        • Who cares if controlling machine guns did not “gun violence” caused with other firearms? Why is that relevant? You agreed the machine gun controls met the intentions of the regulations. The fact that guns not regulated as machine guns were still widely used in crimes is simply illogical. The controls and regulations over machine guns also did not cure cancer, or usher in world peace. Nor did the regulations reduce “gun violence” in Canada. Your logic would say that requiring certain safety features in automobiles, but not in trucks was effective for automobiles, but was ineffective at addressing safety issues in trucks.

        • No, I’m saying banning Hondas would just get people to drive Toyotas and not get them to stop driving foreign cars. If you passed the law because you’re an investor in Toyotas, you win. If you passed to law to support the American automobile industry, you didn’t win.

        • Complaining that a piece of legislation did not accomplish that which it was not intended to accomplish seems a strange bit of logic.

        • Not at all. My proposition was that control and regulations of machine guns was effective at nearly eliminating crimes committed with machine guns. End. Overall gun control was not at issue, in my statement or the CGA. Concerns about general gun control effectiveness based on the potential that other guns would be made substitute is related to general gun control (or general “violence prevention”), not to the reduction of crime committed with machine guns.

        • What’s that got to do with my point that your point is stupid? (Your point as described in the comment I’m responding to, not the point that people should beware absolutes because, as we all know, only the Sith deal in absolute).

          The “gun violence” argument is stupid. It argues that we should regulate (work up to a ban) guns so gun violence will go away.

          It misses the point entirely. It misses the cause and the result. Who cares about eliminating gun violence? Idiots, that’s who. The concern should be eliminating violence. If eliminating or burdening the lawful commerce in firearms increases violence but decreases “gun violence,” don’t do it because that is stupid. Guns don’t cause violence. The actual harm a sane society wants to avoid is violence, not “gun violence.”

          Eliminating “machine gun violence” is an even dumber goal. Handguns, revolvers specifically, are the best tool for the average violent criminal. Even if machine guns were the best choice for crime, a machine gun ban would only cause criminals to use semi-auto rifles (if the cost-benefit was then advantageous). It’s called the substitution effect.

          The law didn’t achieve a meaningful and legitimate governmental purpose. It did not increase public safety. It reduced consumer goods and technological development of a strategic resource. It harmed the nation. If the goal was to limit freedom, it succeeded and was evil. Any other claimed (successful) goal is either a lie or an intermediate goal.

        • “The law didn’t achieve a meaningful and legitimate governmental purpose.”

          According to who? The law (NFA and CGA) made and kept the criminal activity using machine guns at near zero. That is a failure? This mixing of a single effort with a single goal into a discussion of gun control in general is illogical. The gun control of machine guns is/was effective in controlling the proliferation of machine guns, and the proliferation of machine guns in criminal activity. The fact that the laws did not eliminate “gun violence”, or even “violence” is irrelevant. The intent was never to eradicate or even dramatically limit “violence”, or “gun violence” in general.

          I never expected you to join the “if it doesn’t solve all problems, it is ineffective” crowd.

        • “According to who?” – Me.

          “The intent was never to eradicate or even dramatically limit “violence”, or “gun violence” in general.” I do not accept that premise. I have read some of the congressional record on the NFA; I’m not just talking out of my ass.

        • If the intent were truly general reduction in “gun crime”, would not handguns have remained in the legislation?

          Everything OK over there? Noting an edge on your commentaries (to everyone) all day that is not normal for you.

        • In reverse order, I was watching those sorry sons of … in the Senate not fund the government. I also had a few beers in me, and I have an abrasive personality I usually moderate better. In vino veritas. I’m a really nice guy, but I’m usually an ass about it. Thanks for asking.

          Politics is the art of the possible. It’s a let’s get what we can know, and come back for the rest later kinda game. Also, perhaps the true intent of the law was to lay the ground work for the subjugation of the American people by preventing them from being able to legally acquire arms that would be effective in resisting a tyrannical government that, say, put a bunch of people in concentration camps because of their nation of origin.

        • Regarding “the art of politics”, we are engaged in civil war (without the smoke). In war there can only be winners and losers. Politicians are in a struggle for absolute control over the lives of the citizenry. There can be precious little “give and take”, because every proposal is a hard core “principal”, not to be compromised.

          A struggle for power is not a contest of ideas, but a contest of power. It is always a zero sum game. Once the majority of people (from whence come the politicians) decide that personal gratification is THE defining issue, the hopes and intentions of self-government devolve an exercise in force of will, nothing more.

          Right now, Dems are determined to install a self-perpetuating and invincible cadre of voters. There can be no compromise. Dems know that DACA is not about “800,000 dreamers”, but about the 3.2 million related potential voters. Indeed, the “compromise” bill shown to Trump not only locked the present into law, but also expanded the number of people eligible for “amnesty”, now and into the future. My reading was that the measure provided for the entire world to become American citizens; authorizing unlimited refugees into the country. All of this is a non-negotiable position for the Dems. Simply put, Dems demand no limits on the number of potential voters. Repubs are publicly opposed (except a few). Where is the ground for compromise? Every piece of legislation presented by Repubs will be met with the demand for unlimited immigration (legal or otherwise). Where is the room for “let’s get where we can now, and come back and work on other stuff later”?

          Question: why is the DACA thing so important now? Obama could have dispensed with this problem when he and the Dems controlled everything.

        • “Where is the room for “let’s get where we can now, and come back and work on other stuff later”?” That’s the Democrats’ entire reason for pushing immigration. They don’t actually care about immigration or immigrants. They care about accruing power down the road, so they can do whatever they want then.

          On the other hand of Republicans, I don’t understand what they are thinking, at least in leadership. I have spoken to my congressman. I agree with him on most issues. He believes that basically all gun control is unconstitutional, but he is willing to support a law that only overturns some of it. He is for fiscal responsibility, but is willing to vote for a deficit if his vote will make that deficit lower than it would be otherwise.

          “Question: why is the DACA thing so important now?” Because Trump is only willing to violate the constitution until the March deadline? Perhaps Democrats want to make Republicans look racist for upholding the law.

        • DACA could have been used throughout Obama to demonstrate Repubs are “racists” (if any proposed action affects a single non-white person, that action is based on racism).

          You may be right about the Democrat resentment of an imperial president they do not control.

        • The problem with Dreamers as a wedge issue is that the Democrats could have done complete immigration reform when they had 60 votes. They could have pushed it (and were technically able to accomplish it) the rest of the time they were in “control” of the Senate.

          My point isn’t that Trump is an imperial president. It’s that DACA is an unconstitutional executive action. The Fifth Circuit struck down the DAPA as unconstitutional. Trump said he’d give Congress a few months to fix the situation for Dreamers before ending the program (which he believes is unconstitutional because it is).

        • Right. Executive action – imperial president. Depends on if the imperial president is doing things the ruling powers approve. Obama was a satisfactory imperial president for the Dems; no need to pass specific legislation. All of which appears to make Trump the “Why?”

        • “Executive action – imperial president.” I’d just change that to unconstitutional executive action. Maybe even intentionally unconstitutional.

        • The Dem leadership (Reid) declared that they had no interest in reining-in Obama’s executive actions so long as Obama did what they wanted. Reid had no interest in protecting and preserving the constitutional authority of congress as a necessary check on executive power.

        • “If you mean it did what the act said it would do, limit the number of machine guns in the possession of civilians, yes it did that, and thus worked.”

          > THIS

          Yes, the connection between controlling machine guns, and ending prohibition is interesting. Machine guns were available to the public prior to prohibition. Was the rate of crime using machine guns measurable then? What we lack, is a period where machine guns were “banned” from the public, but Prohibition was in full effect.

          On a tangentially related situation, the US government prohibited the private ownership of gold (except small heirloom amounts, or private collections), while simultaneously setting the price at $35/oz. The nation did not see gang wars over gold. Is this evidence that tight regulation and control of attractive items can be effective? Since the government confiscated gold (without kicking down doors, I might add) and then regulated the price and private market supply, would the same be possible with firearms? Are the number of gun owners compared to the number of people who held gold just too disparate to make a comparison?

        • Off the top of my head:
          North Hollywood Bank Robbery
          Alan Berg murder
          Various killing in Miami drug wars in late 70’s to early 80’s
          Whitey Bulger’s collection
          Various mob hits
          Outlaw bikers, like Hell’s Angels, Sons of Silence, etc known for gun running

          You could probably Google hundreds or thousands of specific cases. That doesn’t even count things like drug gangs using them for muscle during transactions bht not firing them.

          Long arms are rarely used for crime, and one’s illegally converted to machine guns are rarer. Handguns are the most commonly used because they’re concealable. Machine gins are a special purpose. However, making or smuggling a machine gun is trivial if you really wanted one.

        • Ten crimes with registered machine guns that he knew about. That’s about the worst statistic to cite (to prove your point) in that whole link.

        • What the links “prove” is that crimes committed with machine guns are statistically insignificant. Which was the target of CGA.

        • “On a tangentially related situation, the US government prohibited the private ownership of gold (except small heirloom amounts, or private collections), while simultaneously setting the price at $35/oz. The nation did not see gang wars over gold.”

          Absolutely right. But then, the nation also didn’t see workers coming home from work, and sitting down to buy gold, either. Possessing gold was not something the average person did, unlike drinking a beer or highball in the evening or at a party. The two (banning alcohol and banning possession of gold) are hardly comparable in that manner. IOW, the demand for alcohol was far, far higher than for gold for the average person.
          It should also be noted that private gold owners only ran into trouble when the government noticed the privately held gold.

    • Gun control actually is useless on the whole.

      Here’s a rebuttal to the machine gun gambit.

      First point: Machine guns are a very small, outlying subset that has no bearing on the larger enterprise.

      Even during the days of the notorious gangsters whose exploits prompted the 1934 NFA, there were only a few in criminal circulation, which the possessors rented out for big $ to others. Then as now, they were of limited utility to criminals, and even less to law-abiding citizens. Great for wasting lead, not much good at anything else. Look at bump-fire stocks as an analog.

      Full-auto firearms were always relatively rare and expensive to own, thus easy to restrict.

      Second point: Anyone who brings up machine guns as a successful example of gun control needs to be challenged with the true scope of universal gun control. There are 3 million-plus AR-pattern rifles alone in the US. Millions of pistols. Millions of shotguns and (at least) a couple hundred million hunting rifles. And 100 million-plus legal gun owners — many of whom are “bitter clingers” who will not give up easily.

      How are your laws going to get a handle on all of that?

      How well did prohibition work? How well is that war on drugs going?

      Even when “properly” structured and enforced, gun control in America is going to look a lot like those failed enterprises. And in America, even more so than in any other country, it will be a hell of a lot more destructive. Civil war isn’t off the table.

      So there’s your gun control.

      Useless…unless chaos, crime, black markets, and totalitarian government are useful to you.

      • Wrong on every point.

        Tightly controlling machine guns made crimes committed with them (after 1934) extremely rare events. Gun control is not universally useless if one form is successful.

        The proper comparison is not between machine gun related criminal activity, but comparing control/regulation to outcome. Simple fact is, controlling and restricting machine guns is effective in reducing machine gun violence in the nation. Which ipso facto proves “gun control” is not completely useless. Attempts to date at controlling other guns used in crimes have not been successful (to the point that controlling machine guns has).

        My point (for those of a contemplative bent) is that “gun control is useless” falls on deaf ears. We need to get away from mindless slogans.

        • It’s a circular argument. Its like asking a retailer why they don’t offer an item for sale that you are interested in. The answer is often “no-one buys that. There is just no demand”. Then I think: How can you assess demand if you don’t offer them for sale? Of course your sales are zero.

        • You do not understand circular arguments, nor their application.

          The point is tight control does work is specific circumstances. The natural conclusion is that if there are not guns in the hands of citizens, there will be no “gun violence”. Inarguable. Also mere sophistry.

          Tight control of machine guns puts a chink in our argument that “gun control never works”, “gun control is useless”, “gun control doesn’t reduce criminal acts”. Keep talking in shorthand that only POTG understand, and watch the continued erosion of your rights.

        • Again, machine guns were not restricted, and the 1934 act had no effect on the number of machine guns then in circulation that were not run through the NFA prior to sale. Further, Prohibition ended in December 1933, prior to the passage of the Act, which in and of itself eliminated the very reason for all of the gang violence.

        • The potential connection between repeal of Prohibition and reduction in machine gun crime (quotes) would be an interesting string to pursue.

          Machine guns are tightly regulated, not “banned” (or prohibited). The background checks and tax are not insignificant negative incentives. The restrictions on ownership are just what the anti-gunners want for all other guns. The anti-gunners would probably be mollified if every gun purchase took a year to complete, and those guns could not be resold or inherited.

        • “Tightly controlling machine guns made crimes committed with them (after 1934) extremely rare events. Gun control is not universally useless if one form is successful. ”

          If you want to say that the GCA is responsible for the lack of crimes committed with them, then you have to present something more than a correlation.
          I have butter in my fridge,and I have never seen a rat in my fridge. Thus, butter keeps rats out of fridges. You know that’s wrong, but it’s the same logic you cling to.
          Prohibition was the reason for so much crime committed with guns, including machine guns, and all type of “gun crime” dropped after it was repealed. A law enacted after the repeal is hard to credit with a reduction in “gun crime” when one of the main causes was done away with before the law was enacted.
          Please try to understand this.

        • Sam understands correlation vs. causation. Sam has told me that causation cannot be statistically proved.

        • Certain causations cannot be statistically “proved” because they rely on inference.

          Given a circumstance where there are no other possible influencing factors, direct causation can be proved. Introduce unknowns (even unknown unknowns) or unmeasurables, and you have potential perturbations that cannot be ruled-out as causes themselves.

          Example: during hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, reportedly the only dikes that failed and resulted in floods were those not built and maintained by the US Army Corps of Engineers. From that data, can on declare only the USARCoE is capable of building adequate dikes?

          This one every lawyer knows:
          Two people enter a know to be unoccupied structure. One of the men holds a firearm. A single shot is heard, and the person who had the gun runs out, and away. The other person is found dead. What was the cause of death? Murder, or suicide?

        • See my earlier response regarding the connection between GCA/NFA and Prohibition. An interesting topic, indeed. (the topic, not my post).

          Be careful with the “correlation is not causation” argument. It can (and should) be turned against us. All the claims that “more guns equals less crime” are predicated on correlation actually being causation.

        • I think you missed my point, Sam.

          Machine gun control mostly (kind of) worked, I’m not denying that. I am denying that it’s a significant achievement. “Machine-gun violence” was never a widespread problem, nor were machine guns ubiquitous. Whatever success there has been is not representative of wholesale gun control in any way.

          You say “Gun control is not universally useless if one form is successful.” Technically true. And also practically pointless, because as the examples of Prohibition and the war on drugs show, the universal gun control we’re told we need will never be universally successful. On the whole, any such effort is doomed to be ineffective (you could even say useless) and likely to be immensely harmful.

        • I completely understood you. However…..

          Claiming “gun control will never work” means any kind of gun control (when spoken internally to POTG – echo chamber, and all). I was trying to show an inconsistency in our propaganda that might come back to hurt us. Indeed, if you look at the slick laws in Californication, Washout state, New Germsey, you see the beginnings of making gun ownership so expensive and onerous that it might actually have a successful effect on POTG (never on the criminal element, but the anti-gunners don’t care about that). We should learn from our enemies.

        • “Tightly controlling machine guns made crimes committed with them (after 1934) extremely rare events. Gun control is not universally useless if one form is successful.”

          As has been pointed out many times, you cannot connect the restriction on machine guns caused a drop in crimes using machine guns, simply because the reason for such crime disappeared at about the same time.
          Yes, if a law is passed against X behavior, and that behavior stops, you certainly have a good reason for saying the law is what caused the drop. However, if you are told that, instead of the law, something else caused the drop, then it is incumbent upon you to prove your assertion. (Just because a law is passed prohibiting the hunting of passenger pigeons, that doesn’t mean the law is responsible for no such hunting, simply because they are extinct. They can’t be hunted.)

        • The relationship between ending Prohibition and passing the CGA is an interesting inquiry. However, simply because a separate factor is present one cannot conclude that the separate factor is the sole driver of the outcome. If the presence of one factor negates another, the presence of the other factor negates the one. Still, the confluence of the events is interesting.

        • SAM I AM wrote: “The relationship between ending Prohibition and passing the CGA is an interesting inquiry. However, simply because a separate factor is present one cannot conclude that the separate factor is the sole driver of the outcome. If the presence of one factor negates another, the presence of the other factor negates the one. Still, the confluence of the events is interesting.”

          I do not see your connection between the repeal of Prohibition (1933) and the Gun Control Act (1968) that was enacted 35 years later.

        • The 18th Amendment was repealed in 1933 with the 21st Amendment. The GCA in this string refers to both the first federal gun-control law, the National Firearms Act of 1934, and the Gun Control Act of 1968. We had been using “NFA/GCA” in combination, and shortened it to GCA to include both pieces of legislation as relates to private ownership of machine guns.

          Sorry for the confusion. Hope you understand.

    • See my post above.
      The GCA was a gun OWNER Control Law. It mandated that only the wealthiest, most well-connected, least-likely-to-be-a-common-criminal types would be allowed to have certain classes of guns and in that sense, yes – it reduced or eliminated crimes committed with those devices.
      But at what cost? Now the lower income, not well-connected, predominantly minority races would have to give up their right to own those things too… their rights were no longer equal under the law.
      Not sure that has been a fair trade.

      • Your conclusions are accurate, but irrelevant.

        Tight control over machine guns almost eliminated crime where a machine gun was used. Nothing else about the statement matters.

        Can such tight control over all firearms be just as successful (success meaning taking action that reduces “gun violence”)? That is the question.

        We are arguing irrelevant points to the anti-gun lobby (populace). The people who want to be rid of guns do not believe the government is hostile to its citizens. The people who want to be rid of guns do not believe the gun owners of this country can actually fight-off an evil government. The people who want to be rid of guns do not see gun ownership as contributing anything to their safety. The people who want to be rid of guns believe themselves to be “good” and “reasonable” persons. They cannot imagine ever doing anything to another person by using a gun, thus no other “good” or “reasonable” person would want to do so either.

        The people who want to be rid of guns care nothing about “natural, human and civil right” to self-defense because they believe they should never have a need for self-defense. People who want to be rid of guns do not believe any “good” or “reasonable” person would have knowledge or capability to use a gun in self-defense, so there is no need for a gun to be used in self-defense (because it would only be used against them).

        Point of all this is we are at stasis regarding gun ownership and use. Stasis is not victory. Losing the war, but fighting the good fight is not a hollow victory, it is not a victory at all. We are on the defensive, constantly. Our lobbyists are on the defensive, constantly. Prevent Defense never worked for a football team. It doesn’t work politically, either. We need to stop “defending” our rights.

        • Not to make this the focus of the argument, but there wasn’t a lot of machine gun crime before the NFA. Your argument here is exactly like the Australians who claim their gun laws have prevented mass shootings when they were equally as rare before the Port Arthur massacre as they have been after.

          Now to the crux of your argument. For one, don’t level a complaint without proposing a solution. I agree, I would like to see some progress towards restoring the right to keep and bear arms.

          Two, the arguments commonly used by the PotG have never been directed at the rabidly anti-gun who naively think government always has their best interests at heart and see no reason for anyone to want a gun. You cannot use rationality against irrational people. Our arguments have always been directed at fence sitters.

        • Before hand-held machine guns, there were plenty of handguns and long guns used in criminal activity. No law has done much to change that. Indeed, there was a long period of rising incidents of crimes committed with non-machine guns.

          There was not much crime committed with hand-held machine guns before 1935 (but the incidents were quite the thing in the press). After the gun control act, there was not much rise in the number of crimes committed with machine guns. Given there was a rise in “gun crimes” with non-machine guns, but not with machine guns, is it not sensible to conclude controlling and regulating machine guns was a significant factor in maintaining the low number of crimes with machine guns?

          The whole point is the gun control act was/is successful at keeping machine guns out of the hands of criminals (to date). That means gun control is not completely useless. The extreme case is that if there are no guns in the hands of the populace, there would be no “gun crime”. This is the underlying theory behind gun control supporters (they completely ignore the criminal element’s facile ability to obtain guns). They are quite happy with the idea that if “normal” people don’t have guns, criminals will not be a problem because good little drones aren’t criminals, don’t know any criminals, and never go where the criminals operate. Life is good.

          My postulate is that we should abandon any phrase that states gun control never works. What we are saying (to those pixies we believe are those people still uncertain about guns and “gun rights”) is, except for complete confiscation from everyone (criminal and non-criminal alike), significant reductions in “gun violence” due to gun control laws is elusive, and a danger to the citizenry.

          The so-called unaligned in the war over “gun rights” is so insignificant as to not be able to tilt the fight in our favor. We better find a way to destroy the anti-gun political Sasquatch. Shouting our insider slogans doesn’t move the football.

        • “The whole point is the gun control act was/is successful at keeping machine guns out of the hands of criminals (to date).” Is not a true statement whatsoever. Just ask the FBI agents in the Miami shootout and the police involved in the North Hollywood bank robbery, just to name a couple. No “gun control” law has ever reduced criminal activity simply because by definition, criminals are exempt from laws. The only thing laws serve to do is disarm law-abiding citizens and make them defenseless. If anything, prohibitions like gun control simply benefit criminals by creating a black market for guns, just as it did alcohol back in the day and street drugs today.

        • Nothing about my comment claimed 100% success of machine gun regulation. Only that we cannot begin to compare the number of crimes committed with a machine gun to crimes committed with handguns.

          The idea that an action must be 100% effective in order to be considered successful is a definition of extremist. Nothing created by humans is 100% effective (free from defects or misuse).

    • No documented cases of death from Bufotenin in the US. This is undeniable proof that the war on drugs works!

      • “No documented cases of death from Bufotenin in the US. This is undeniable proof that war on drugs works!”

        Wrong. You “data” merely proves the drug is not threatening the patients. It proves that controlling the creation and production of the drug works.

        Making silly comparisons solidifies the opinion of POTG as Luddites. Try to think outside your comfortable slogans and beliefs. This is serious business.

        • You are simply clueless. But you do prove POTG lack reading and comprehension skills…much to our detriment.

          Read the damn comments, entirely. Knee-jerk reaction is one of the shining examples anti-gun people use to marginalize us. If you cannot think beyond slogans, please go into read-only mode,

        • Oh please. Get a life.

          You have absolutely no idea who you are addressing, and zero ability to understand complex writing.

          Come back when you want to engage in adult discourse. Otherwise, create your own echo chamber.

    • I read a story yesterday about a guy who killed a baby sitter with a “submachine gun.” That and that the girl was shot only once were the only pieces of information about the gun in the article, so I don’t know if a machine gun was actually used.

    • “There have been almost no crimes committed with “machine guns” since 1935.” – Citation please. Were such crimes cataloged as such? When was the first machine pistol invented, as almost no crimes are committed with rifles anyway? And why was that guy selling “Uzis” with silencers? (That’s a reference to a story from a credible, personally known source about a guy selling full auto machine guns with silencers that were totally illegal).

        • I’m going with about 2,000, and you can’t prove me wrong with that table. (Combining “Other guns” and “Firearm, type not stated” because, as I implied earlier, I don’t think it is a tracked statistic).

        • Looking at the data, it would be impossible to conclude that 2000 crimes were committed with machine guns. The macro analysis would tell us that if there were 2000 crimes committed in a single year by people using machine guns (legal or not), the American press would be shouting that fact from every street corner. Indeed, given the Las Vegas event, the press would likely have dragged in incidents where an actual full auto gun was used, especially if there were 2000 incidents.

          The lack of reporting on crimes where a machine gun was used in the last five years (when I was paying attention) also seems to indicate such crimes are very, very rare (statistically insignificant). I did find one serious article that referenced “the director of the ATF” testifying in congress in 2011 that less than 10 crimes were recorded that involved full auto weapons (time frame not specified).

        • “the American press would be shouting that fact from every street corner.” – No they wouldn’t. It would be proof that the NFA is useless garbage that only punishes those who obey the law. Alternatively, they do. How many times have we heard about the “assault rifle” problem. As we all know, an assault rifle is a select fire, intermediate cartridge rifle.

          (My point isn’t that 2,000 machine gun murders are committed each year, that’s a ridiculous claim, but that the evidence doesn’t say how many are. You have to establish the number of machine gun crimes and provide evidence of causation, which you have previously said can’t be proven. Additionally, a better “gun control, in at least some instances, works” argument is the NRA’s endorsement of “Project Exile,” and Jeff Sessions’ push to enforce gun laws on the books. There isn’t enough data to on machine guns pre and post machine gun laws to even make a statistically valid argument as to correlation).

        • “No they wouldn’t. It would be proof that the NFA is useless garbage…”

          Disagree. Anti-gunners are not really stupid, they are cunning. The failure of CGA/NFA to keep “machine gun” crime to a negligible issue would be used to prove that even background checks are ineffective, requiring complete removal of all multiple-round guns from sale (we have RTKBA, but the courts have not ruled that restricting guns to single shot is prohibited, wherein we would still have the right to arms, just not certain types – as is the case today). Notable statistics about machine gun crime would be coupled with the fear of bumpstocks, not ignored.

        • There is a saying I can’t recall exactly, but it goes something like “may all your scandals be complicated and free of photographic evidence.” The point is the media won’t report on things that are complicated. Especially if there aren’t any pictures or video.

        • Do you suspect there would be a dearth of photos and simple statements should a legal machine gun owner clear out a shopping mall?

        • “The failure of CGA/NFA to keep “machine gun” crime to a negligible issue would be used to prove that even background checks are ineffective, requiring complete removal of all multiple-round guns from sale … . Notable statistics about machine gun crime would be coupled with the fear of bumpstocks, not ignored.”

          That’s a complicated argument that the media wouldn’t be willing to make.

        • How about this headline:
          “Gunman murders dozens with legally owned machine gun. Background checks fail to keep the public safe. Time to remove weapons of war from the public.”

    • Most people had no interest in buying fully automatic weapons even before the 1934 Firearms act. Something like a Thompson Submachine gun cost about $200 in 1921, when the average income was $1537.00. This was not even counting cost of ammunition, nor the added tax of $200 in 1934. There was lack of supply and demand even prior to the restrictions.

      • Those factors do not alter the success. Apply the same factors to other guns, and you would likely see a reduction in “gun crime”, also. The impact could not be precisely duplicated because the enormous existence of other guns is far different from the case with machine guns (although, “Tommy guns” were once offered for sale at $20 in some mail order catalogs).

        Just saying an absolute slogan that gun control never works, anywhere, anytime is incorrect.

    • Correlation is not causation.

      1. The number of machine guns legally in the hands of civilians in the US is infinitesimal compared to the number of non-machine guns. There are about 200,000 machine guns on the registry. There are an estimated 450 million non-machine guns in civilian hands. A significant portion of the machine guns on the registry are crew-served machine guns not viable to be toted around by a criminal – like the M2.

      2. The NFA destroyed the civilian market for machine guns, not because of regulation, but because of cost. The 1929 Sears catalog listed the Thompson sub-machine gun at $125. The NFA pushed that cost to $325. Production of machine guns for the civilian market dropped off in response to the lack of demand. It stopped altogether in 1986 as a result of the Hughes amendment to the FOPA.

      3. Rifles are used for only a few hundred murders per year. Machine guns comprise only .01% of all rifles, so by the law of averages a machine gun could be expected to murder someone about every 5 years or so. Who’s to say it didn’t happen? Find a body with a .30 caliber rifle bullet in it. Did it come from a bolt action hunting rifle or a BAR? No way to tell.

      You may wish to say that the NFA so economically disadvantaged machine guns that it reduced their use in crime. That doesn’t justify it. Any “good” in the area of crime reduction is vastly outweighed by the damage done to future machine gun development. The future Maxims and Brownings had no economic incentive to work on improved machine gun designs because there was not enough market to justify it, especially prior to WW2. Even Stoner wasn’t looking for a new machine gun design. He wanted to see what could be done in the way of rifle design with newer, “space age” materials that were less vulnerable to weather than steel and wood. His AR-10 and AR-15 designs were semi-auto, and only got redesigned for full auto when the Army got interested.

      Full auto had only a small niche in the crime world even before the NFA. They were used for big splashy hits (St. Valentine’s Day Massacre ring a bell?). Both then and now the preferred method of rubbing out a rival gangster is the handgun. Full auto is heavy and hard to control. It’s helpful on the battlefield when you need supressive fire, but it is not particularly usefull in criminal enterprise.

      Your thesis is that the NFA works as gun control because of the scarcity of machine gun crime. I say machine guns are used little in crime because they are, in the majority of cases, the wrong tool for the job.

      • “That doesn’t justify it. Any “good” in the area of crime reduction is vastly outweighed by the damage done to future machine gun development. ”

        Secondary effects are irrelevant. If the point of tight control and regulation of machine guns is to reduce the number of crimes committed with machine guns, the related complications have no bearing on whether the control and regulation is ineffective. We can pretend all we like, but crimes committed with machine guns are, in fact, very rare. That was the point of the controls and restrictions. There is nothing in my original comment that indicated that tight regulation of a specific weapon can be superimposed on any other weapon (gun). Under the right circumstances, gun control can be effective. That’s all.


        We cannot ignore the strong (and not unsuccessful) movement to control ammunition, to control the configuration of guns, to control the follow-on sales and inheritance of firearms. If we agree that laws regarding machine guns made the guns too expensive, too difficult to obtain for whatever reason, the machine gun laws point the way. Make using a gun (and related accessories too expensive and too onerous to have). It is happening. All that is needed is a raft of laws limiting gun purchase to one or two per year (we are talking about secondary effects on the supply chain). Laws restricting the amount of ammunition that may be purchased (including the components for hand-loading) will drive up the costs, and limit recreational use. Laws prohibiting the transportation of guns and ammunition (except immediately after purchase) on roadways, or anywhere outside the home and related lands would leave us with a right to arms, but an inability to effectively use them. All these measures would be emulation of the CGA/NFA. If there were a coincidental dramatic drop in “gun crime” wherever these measures are in effect, we would play hell convincing the undecided pixies (forget the committed anti-gunners, they don’t need empirical evidence – the argument about “rights” does not penetrate either group) that making guns inconvenient to own somehow threatens their safety. If you make the case that controlling machine guns virtually eliminated “machine gun crime”, the squishes will make the logical leap that controlling all guns will have the same result (BTW, anti-gunners care nothing about the potential that other weapons will be substituted for guns).

  6. And they told us how proud they were that We had become so civilized, and we should “endeavor to persevere.” We thought about this, “Endeavor to persevere,” and then we declared war on the white man.

  7. In order to address “Gun Violence” you must first identify the 2 major sources of gun violence. 2/3s of all gun violence is suicides (approximately 20k per year), the second leading cause of gun violence is gangs (approximately 8k murders per year). None of these is directly associated with guns. Suicide (while tragic) is a mental health issue NOT A GUN ISSUE! Gang violence is a socio-economic issue NOT A GUN ISSUE! Better mental health care and enforcement of current violent offender laws can solve 90% of “gun violence” issues.

    • “Yada, yada, yada.”

      None of that matters. The real threat to society is the “normal-looking” person who carries a gun, and just might “go off” for no reason and shoot-up a mall. “People” do not fear suicides (because most people do not commit suicide, or know someone who has). “People” do not fear gangs because “nice” people don’t go where gangs are located. “People” do not fear foreign influenced terrorists because those kinds of folks do not launch attacks daily in every city. “People” fear the guy in Las Vegas, because guys like that do not wear badges or uniforms that permits “nice” people to be alerted, and avoid being shot. “People” fear the radicalized gun-lover who wants to settle all disputes with a gun. Well, except for those unfortunate mental health victims who shoot-up baseball practice.

        • Not declaring we should or shouldn’t, but it seems to be what is happening.

          Just pointing out what we are up against, and all our slogan-shouting is ineffective in overcoming what “people” fear. (Normal gun owners on the verge is gun rage). We have tried ignoring the anti-gunners. Tried pounding the table over “natural, civil and human right” to self-defense. The result has been perpetual stasis. We gotta find a way to move the ball forward dramatically. Being perpetually on defense is not getting us there.

  8. I use a Springfield milspec .45 and a Glock 19 for gun violence prevention. In extreme cases I have an AK and an AR available.

  9. Every time the gun control establishment changes their “buzz words” or slogans, I rejoice a little. It means that they clearly are not winning, and they know it. An ad/propaganda campaign only changes their message when it isn’t working, and the gun control folks have changed theirs every two or three years.

    • “It means that they clearly are not winning, and they know it. ”

      If you are constantly fending off your enemy, you are not winning, and they are not losing.

  10. Every new gun control law is like a new toy to democrats/progressives/luberals. Gun control laws are not supposed to work by design, in order to perpetuate the pleasure from controlling.

  11. The National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Hughes Amendment of 1986 limited the use and possession of fully automatic firearms, in the United States, to the police, the military and the affluent. This is proof that “gun control” works, except when is does not work. Cast your gaze south of the border to the failed state of Mexico. You will plainly see that “gun control” does not work, it has never worked and it will never work. Prior to 1934, the possession of fully automatic firearms in this country was not widespread, the criminal misuse of fully automatic firearms was not widespread. It is not logical to credit the NFA for conditions after it’s passage that are identical to conditions that existed before it’s passage. Unless you wish to assert that the possession of fully automatic firearms would have become widespread without the passage of the NFA, there is no argument that “gun control” works.
    Can “gun control” work in this country? Has gun control worked in Chicago?, California?, New Jersey? or any of the other political subdivisions where gun rights go to die? We count privately owned firearms, in this country, by the hundreds of millions. This is a fundamentally different condition. The genie is out of the bottle, the horses are out of the barn, the ship has sailed. Criminalizing the possession of property that a tiny percentage of the population owns is very different than taking away one of the most common tools we own.

    • Comparing gun control in general with a specific example is not valid.

      Failure of general gun control is not relevant to a discussion of the success of control and regulation of one type of weapon, in a single country.

      You’re missing the point. The proposition was not regarding over all gun control, but the futility of claiming gun control never works when it appears that it does under certain circumstances. We should not be using absolute declarations that are unhelpful. Just because we talk to ourselves doesn’t mean the proper audience is paying attention.

      • In the first half of the last century, Prohibition and the Great Depression gave rise to violent criminal gangs who sometimes used fully automatic weapons to fight each other and the police. Prohibition was repealed and our economy recovered from the Great Depression. The gangs of bootleggers and bank robbers disappeared. Prior to Prohibition and the Great Depression, the criminal misuse of fully automatic weapons was not widespread. After the repeal of Prohibition and recovery from the Great Depression the criminal misuse of fully automatic weapons was not widespread.
        The National Firearms Act of 1934 did not disarm the bootleggers and the bank robbers who used fully automatic weapons. They were hunted down and killed or imprisoned. Subtract them from the equation and you will find that conditions before and after passage of the NFA are identical. Gun control does not work, in general or in specific cases.

        • Not so.

          The CGA, so far, has kept the number of machine gun related crimes to an insignificant number. Essentially, the supply dried-up. I do not know why we are not awash in illegally imported machine guns; ’tis a puzzlement. CGA is not influencing that. However, CGA still stands as an impediment to “machine gun crime”.

  12. SAM I AM (and everyone else here) read this article:


    All gun laws have been blatantly racist and elitist in their intent and enacted to control certain classes of people, mainly black and poor people, by stripping them of their civil rights.

    The most dedicated and vociferous proponents of strict gun controls are urban, upper-middle-class, pro-big-government liberals, most of whom know nothing about firearms and the wide range of legitimate uses to which they are regularly put to use.

    If you really want to bring about a reduction of violent crime, do away with the racist Gun Control Act of 1968 (that was intended to keep guns from inner-city black people, but failed miserably).

    Crime and homicide rate skyrocketed after the 1968 law was passed. It didn’t come down until the revolution in legalizing concealed carry was underway.

    We need to eliminate the entire US Code that constitutes the National Firearms Act of 1934 (which was originally created to prevent black men from having handguns, even though handguns were removed from the legislation before the bill passed).

    Moreover, we need to repeal the Gun Control Act of 1968, the Firearm Owners Protection Act (specifically the Hughes Amendment) of 1986, the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993, and abolish the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, none of which has prevented a single violent crime, in fact quite the contrary. Disarming law-abiding citizens has allowed criminals to flourish.

    Then ban all state laws that violate the civil rights and liberties of all law-abiding American people black & white, rich & poor.

    Once Nationwide Constitutional Carry is the law of the land, deadly “gun-free” killing zones are completely eliminated, and people who commit violent crimes using a firearm are locked up for decades through mandatory minimums, violence will be all but a thing of the past.


      Not relevant to a discussion of the success of tight control and regulation of a single class of gun. Without research, I seriously doubt regulating ownership of machine guns has any racial intent, or ever had any racial intent. I also suspect that the vast and overwhelming majority of legal machine gun owners are not minority members.

      • If we can make an emotional bomb like racism stick to gun control, the facts won’t matter.

        We probably can’t in this case because the opposite assumption is already so deeply embedded, but this is exactly the kind of thing that WILL work if we can harness it. Emotion always trumps fact.

        The opposition is brilliant at using emotion to its benefit, but is empty of facts and truth. We have all the facts on our side, but no emotional hooks.

        • Regarding general attempts at gun control, yes, the genesis was racism.

          As to painting that sticker on the anti-gun movement, how to do it? We are being removed from the most popular social media websites. We have no voice anywhere in the mainstream media. Fox news is not staunchly pro-2A (as in producing content that extols the second amendment, or gun ownership, or right to armed self-defense).

          We need new ideas and new avenues for messaging.

  13. SAM I AM, Since “Gun Violence Prevention” is simply intended to punish law abiding citizens and would obviously not do anything whatsoever to prevent a single violent crime like we just saw in Las Vegas, what new restriction would you place on law-abiding citizens that violent suicidal criminals will obey and will PREVENT “GUN VIOLENCE” AS YOU CLAIM?

    • My original comment was not about gun control in general, but a specific segment (machine guns). All the “cold dead hands” commentary is irrelevant.

      • But the discussion here actually is about gun control in general.

        So how does the (arguably) successful machine-gun ban apply to the larger context of universal gun control, which is what the “gun violence prevention” brand is all about? Can it scale up successfully?

        The onus is on the would-be controllers to prove that it could/would work. And I don’t think they can. The history of similar attempts at large-scale ban-and-control regimes is dismal to say the least.

        • “But the discussion here actually is about gun control in general.”

          Not my fault. Not being able to stay on point, not being able to resist drifting off into knee-jerk sloganeering is a POTG weakness. When someone (me) declares a specific item of discussion, who bears the responsibility for germane responses? If all we have to offer are the same stale, self-comforting bromides, then we deserve to lose the battle. Lack of disciplined thinking keeps us on the defensive.

  14. SAM I AM, if heavy gun restrictions on law abiding citizens is the answer, please explain how placing further restrictions on law abiding citizens would in any way keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, like criminals, and the mentally ill or unstable and why not use the same laws to keep them from getting illegal drugs, like are readily available in grade schools and federal prison populations?

    As to your claim that the National Firearms Act of 1934 has successfully prevented criminals form possessing machine guns (except for the many who do) and since laws prohibiting Marijuana, Hashish, Heroin, Opium, Cocaine, Amphetamine, Methamphetamine, LSD, Mescaline, Psilocybin, and Etc. work so well, why don’t they pass laws prohibiting homicide, rape, arson, burglary, robbery, theft/larceny, battery, tax evasion, fraud, manufacture/sale drugs, treason, kidnapping, and child pornography?

    • I am discouraged by the poor thinking skills displayed by commenters. The single point was that from the available evidence, the number of crimes committed IN THIS COUNTRY by people armed with machine guns is so rare as to be statistically insignificant. This condition means that arguing gun control never works, or has unwanted secondary effects, or whatever is profitless (except inside our echo chamber).

      Some have commented about the reasons for success of machine gun control and regulation, and the ideas are interesting. However….the unique circumstances of tight control of machine guns do not lessen the successful effect of reducing “gun crimes” perpetrated by people with machine guns.

      Taking a comment about a singularity, and jumping immediately to all the comfortable sloganeering is the problem. If we cannot frame our thoughts about gun control any better than “cold dead hands”, we have little chance of convincing those mythical “fence sitters” of our cause. The argument is made that we cannot change minds of committed anti-gunners, so we are targeting the “undecideds” (of whom there are not enough to actually represent a convincing majority). If so, our rhetoric is woefully inadequate in that we always seem to favor navel gazing.

      • Many others have already pointed it out so I won’t repeat it in detail. The conditions of machine gun use in criminal activity have not been shown to be different after the NFA as opposed to prior to it. One is lead to conclude that no change has taken place, therefore no claim that any aspect of the NFA has been effective can be taken seriously.

        I understand where you are coming from, you are trying to hone our talking points to be the most effective. I would counter, nuance is not the Ally we wish it was. Our enemy has been waging and still is waging an effective war against us with slogans, one liners, and bullet points. Remember the brainpower of the average voter, 140 characters is all they can handle on a single topic.

        You are correct in that the slogan “Gun Control doesn’t work” is false from the “if it saves just one life” point of view. But it is correct from the “how many lives are we losing to save that one life” point of view. The average vote tends to agree vocally with the “if it saves one life” but emotionally they are unsatisfied if any life is lost. Hence my vote that the “Gun Control is ineffective” is a good one but could be better. Please let’s make a better one.

        • ” I would counter, nuance is not the Ally we wish it was.”

          “Nuance” is not my forte’. I am very unskilled at it.

          My intention is that we drop slogans that do not get us anywhere, and provide the opposition with easy cheap shots at our intellectual capability.

          We are not winning the messaging war. Fact is, the anti-gunners, and the mythical “undecideds” are not susceptible to principled arguments. Quite frankly, only POTG care about constitutional rights to self-defense (and defense against a rogue government). The opposition and “undecideds” do not believe (believe at the core) that they face danger of enslavement from/by government; militia is not a relevant concept. They do not believe (believe at the core) that they are in danger of being mugged; they only go where “good people” go. They believe (believe at the core) that the true and present danger is from deranged legal gun owners. Our failing is that we categorically dismiss/reject “belief” as a valid challenge, something we need to take seriously.

          Ironically, in an era of declining violent crime, our message is that conditions are worse than ever, demanding an armed citizenry to fend of ever-present attackers. We know the crime rates are falling, and so do the “undecideds”.

          Shouting “RTKBA” and “cold dead hands” has proven completely ineffective (except to entertain ourselves with our chest-thumping). How easy to claim “I have rights, and you can go stuff yourself.” And then we are treated to another successful effort to ban this or that gun feature. The opposition is finding state level campaigns more attractive, and they are not failing miserably.

          Population is a factor we ignore blithely. Starting with the notion that there are 100,000,000 legal gun owners (one-third of the population? really?). What gets lost is that we should logically have an unbeatable majority in the fight for “gun rights”. Remove children from the remaining 240,000,000 in the populace, and we have either a stark indication we are doomed politically. One hundred million votes against two hundred forty million votes (votes, as in opinion). Principle will not win the day.

          Of the one hundred million legal gun owners, we believe there are about fifteen million who would go about armed on any given day. Eighty five million gun owners do not share out ideas. Again, outnumbered.

          And we are not even addressing the fact that we have no idea how many gun owners are single-issue voters regarding protecting our rights as gun owners.

          It would seem the issue is that we are too few to make an overwhelming majority who would forfeit everything to protect our “natural, human and civil” right to self-defense. Believing otherwise blatantly ignores the fact that even gun owners put some voter issues far above protecting the second amendment.

          The avenues for getting our message out are shrinking faster than most understand. That means our message must be compelling, compelling to people who do not put much value on “gun rights”, not compelling to ourselves.

          We need to understand where are propositions are weak, or completely lacking. We need better messaging that addresses the real fears of the non-POTG public. We need an emotional appeal that swamps those fears. We gotta find a way to quit talking to our belly buttons.

      • SAM I AM, you carefully and verbosely avoided answering my question: If heavy gun restrictions on law abiding citizens is the answer, please explain how placing further restrictions on law abiding citizens would in any way keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, like criminals, and the mentally ill or unstable and why not use the same laws to keep them from getting illegal drugs, like are readily available in grade schools and federal prison populations?

        • I didn’t fail to answer your question, it is not germane. I made no comment regarding the potential effectiveness of extending the success of NFA to general gun control. NFA was not designed as a general gun control measure. My single point was that the success of NFA in curbing crimes committed with machine guns simply means we cannot claim that gun controls never work. Leaping from a specific to the general indicates we do not analyze and respond well to the unfamiliar, the uncomfortable.

        • “NFA was not designed as a general gun control measure.” That’s actually not true. The NFA was designed to ban all concealable guns and machine guns. Somehow silencers got thrown in. Nobody actually knows why. The best argument I’ve heard is poaching.

          Handguns was considered a bridge to far and taken out of the bill.

          Also, almost any gun control measure could be argued to not be a general measure, but that would be either a lie or ignorant. The publicly stated goal is to reduce violent crime every time. The actual goal, at best, is only a guess.

        • In the end, handguns (representing general gun control) was eliminated from the signed bill. Thus, the intent became limiting machine guns, SBRs, and silencers. The result was a reduction in crime committed with those tools to the point such crime is statistically insignificant.

          Not sure what you mean here.

        • Yes, and my comment reflected that NFA was effective in reducing violent crime due to use of a machine gun.

        • Reducing all violence does not equal reducing a particular kind of violence if that reduction is offset by an increase in another kind of violence.

        • We agree. For my purpose, I don’t care about the effect on overall crime. Only whether NFA was effective at reducing a single type of “gun crime”.

  15. All of these things are important to me. Mostly because i want these stupid ideas gone, but important nevertheless.
    Plus, i also participate in gun violence prevention. You start some gun violence, i prevent you from continuing with some lead. Doesn’t get more preventing than that.

  16. Please tell Mike the (Masshole) Gun Guy that his state’s former colony of Maine, proudly divorced since 1820, has had the lowest per-capita assault rate in the nation from 2005-2014 (DOJ Uniform Crime Statistics Tables). The reason? Every single house not located in a city (only have two of those, total combined population of 100,000 out of 1.4 million) has a hunting rifle, a shotgun, a 22 rifle, and about half have handguns. And, our homicide rate is almost 50% lower than M(ass)achussetts. As old Bob Heinlein once remarked, ” an armed society is a polite society.”

  17. If invidiously racist gun control is “gun violence prevention” then:

    * rape = “mandatory consensual sex”
    * genocide = “kinetic population control”
    * theft = “permanent, non-consensual borrowing”
    * arson = “unsolicited exothermic processes”

  18. SAM I AM, Obviously, as with any “Gun Control” legislation which only serves to harm and/or effect law-abiding citizens, the National Firearms Act (NFA) of 1934 had zero effect on criminals (since criminals do not register or pay tax stamps on their weapons) and neither did the Firearm Owners Protection Act (specifically the Hughes Amendment) of 1986 which banned import or manufacture of machine guns.

    • The criminal element that acquired and used machine guns during Prohibition seem to have stop using the machine guns after the NFA was law. We have not seen the widespread use of machine guns by people who do not obey laws since NFA. That element exists, machine guns still exist. Crimes committed with machine guns is not even a category reported by DOJ. My proposition was/is that NFA was a successful piece of gun control, evidenced by the rarity of crimes where machine guns were involved. Others posited that the ending of Prohibition was/is the actual cause of the drop in the use of machine guns used in crimes. Whether or not there is any connection between ending Prohibition and the NFA is an interesting idea to pursue. In the end, people who do not obey the law have not (yet) gone to alternate sources to acquire machine guns for use in crimes and gang warfare.

      • Machine guns are not so great for criminal endeavor. Other kinds of firearms are better for the task (except for terrorism maybe) and easier to acquire. So it makes sense that even those few machine gun using criminals moved to revolvers and pistols.
        Let’s say we get a law passed saying that all pink guns need to be registered and “tightly regulated”. Possession of unregistered gun of pink color is now extra super double illegal and carries extra super prison time. Price of registered pink guns is going to go up. Meanwhile most criminals (who have not been using pink guns all that much to begin with) move to guns of other colors.
        Result? Great success! Murders with green guns are very low and the pink gun control law worked! Don’t say it didn’t.

        • If reducing/ending crimes committed with machine guns is the intent of the law, and a reduction happens, it is meaningless that substitute guns were introduced. The intent of the law was not reducing the rate or incidence of “gun crimes”. End.

        • You already accepted that NFA was originally designed to limit concealed weapons (handguns, SBRs and machine guns) with handguns removed from legislation, standard rifles not considered, and machine guns the only remaining firearm, the “if” in my statement is valid.

        • “If reducing/ending crimes committed with machine guns is the intent of the law.” The law was designed to ban concealable firearms. The purpose, or intent as you say, of the law was to reduce violence (or allow the government to trample freedom while leaving the people no recourse). If the gun control does not reduce violence, then the gun control does not work. It doesn’t matter if it reduces some violence, but increases other violence. That’s a failure.

        • Disagree. If one type or method of violent crime is reduced, that gun control law is effective.

          On the whole, lack of gun control laws cannot be credited with reduction in violent crime, either. We love us some claims that somehow “more guns equals less crime”, but that claim cannot be substantiated. If “more guns” cannot be traced to the lowering of overall violent crime since 1993, how can we say “more guns” is an effective control or deterrent to violent crime? There are too many factors. With NFA, we have an isolated circumstance.

          To take your theme further, any law targeting a reduction in overall crime that does not result in a reduction of overall crime is a failure, regardless of whether there was a reduction in a specific crime after the law is passed. That would lead to the correct understanding that if there were no laws, there would be no crime; thus no laws that fail to make a difference.

        • I agree that you disagree and that “[o]n the whole, lack of gun control laws cannot be credited with reduction in violent crime, either.”

          “To take your theme further, any law targeting a reduction in overall crime that does not result in a reduction of overall crime is a failure, regardless of whether there was a reduction in a specific crime after the law is passed.” Yes, if the crime rate remained the same, then criminals have shifted from one crime to another because of the law. Now if criminals shifted from robbery to larceny, I wouldn’t call that a failure. If the criminals shifted from 100 knife murders to 100 pipe murders, then I’d say that law was a complete and absolute failure because it imposed costs, as all laws do, without any benefit.

        • The difference here is equating the reduction of a single form of crime with overall crime. If a law targets a specific crime, and frequency of that crime drops, such law was effective. Whether a different crime becomes more popular as a result, reflects nothing on the success of the law under discussion. We actually have no way of knowing that one crime is substituted for another, only inferences. Had there been no sub-machine guns available, thus no NFA, would we have seen an increase or decrease in: violent crime; violent crime committed with a firearm? We have no way to make a judgement. We cannot determine the reason one crime rate falls, and another rises.

          Then we get back to “no law affects criminal conduct”, and the logical conclusion – if only the law-abiding obey laws, why the need for laws at all? (this question is not germane to my original proposition). And the evergreen conundrum, is law designed to be a deterrent (pretty ineffective), or merely a catalog of punishments? If the latter, how effective has law been in correcting behavior due to the received punishment?

        • “Then we get back to “no law affects criminal conduct”, and the logical conclusion – if only the law-abiding obey laws, why the need for laws at all?” That is not my position. My position is that if the legal framework, with a goal of reducing a result, only causes a substitution effect as to the means of causing that result, the law is bad.

          I am for virtually all laws prohibiting the malum in se. I am against virtually all laws prohibiting the malum prohibitum.

          We’ve gone round and round enough on this (the NFA, purpose of it, and whether a law is a failure or not) issue. It bores me now, and we aren’t really getting anywhere, so I’m out.

      • “Crimes committed with machine guns is not even a category reported by DOJ.” – Then one cannot say with any certainty if machine guns are used in crime more, less, or the same amount as before the NFA.

        If the use was rare before and rare after, then what does that mean? Nothing.

        • “Then one cannot say with any certainty if machine guns are used in crime more, less, or the same amount as before the NFA.”

          The fact that the current DOJ does not see machine gun related crimes significant enough to categorize does not mean there is no data surrounding the time before, during and after NFA (I have not looked). Looking at a statistically insignificant data point that is not cataloged today (or since, say, 1990 [random date]) does not mean there was no period when such data was significant, and cataloged.

        • Well, you need to find that data to make your point. If it isn’t available, this can only be guesswork. The saying “your guess is as good as mine” comes to mind.

        • Is a guess not better than a flat declaration that the data doesn’t exist/never existed? Analyzing effects of legislation is not something invented at the turn of the century.

        • The data is a black swan. I haven’t ever seen it, and as far as I can tell, neither has anyone else. It’ll be a big surprise if it is found.

        • Agree. But the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Taking “absence” and declaring, without verification, that the data doesn’t exist is not a supporting pole for a claim that without the data, we must assume failure of the proposition.

          On the surface, it seems NFA was effective in reducing “machine gun crime” to insignificance.

        • “On the surface, it seems NFA was effective in reducing “machine gun crime” to insignificance.” Common sense gun control? (Winky emoticon). Many disagree, and without actual evidence, your claim is just that, a claim.

          I disagree because every gun control law I have ever seen analyzed with actual data with sound methods increased violent crime. And I think that is our main disagreement. If the legal framework that is supposed to reduce violence does not decrease violence while that framework has a cost, it is a complete and absolute failure. If it decreased one category of violence (without reducing overall violence), that decrease is irrelevant.

        • My original comment had nothing to do with gun control in general. It was a question of whether we operate under a false rubric: gun control never works. There was a period of our history where crimes committed with machine guns were not rare as hen’s teeth. That period seemed to have ended with the advent of NFA. If the association is correct, then at least one condition exists where gun control worked…reduced crimes where a machine gun was used.
          “I disagree because every gun control law I have ever seen analyzed with actual data with sound methods increased violent crime.”

          Actually we do not entirely disagree. Remember, I made no claim that successful results of NFA could be extended to any other iteration of gun control laws. Too many differences between then and now. Too many failed attempts. I just do not subscribe to the idea that the only effective law (regarding anything) is one where there is 100% compliance, or effectiveness (as in drive the number of events to zero).

          Was NFA the dominate factor? Was Prohibition the dominant factor? Both combined? We do not have sufficient information yet. However, historical and present experience (lack of notoriety of crimes with machine guns) does need acknowledgement. Case in point, the Las Vegas episode did not generate horrendous headlines about bumpfire stocks adding to the current carnage of crimes committed with machine guns. If such carnage existed, there is no possible way the MSM would not be hyping it.

          There have been a few comments regarding the conjunction of NFA and ending prohibition. Some of the comments have been intelligent, some have been regurgitation of religious zealotry. Most of the responding commentary has been of limited thought, and childish stomping of feet, beating of chests. My original intent was to encourage review of one of our “absolutes”, and to engage in the mental and literary effort to debate, rather than revert to third grade name-calling. Overall, I failed to accomplish the goal.

          (always remember that I am one who believes there should be no restrictions on the types of weapon “the people” have a right to own or possess)

      • SAM I AM; The criminal element that acquired and used machine guns during Prohibition seem to have stop using the machine guns after the NFA was law OBVIOUSLY BECAUSE PROHIBITION WAS REPEALED BEFORE THE NFA WAS ENACTED!

        The widespread use of machine guns by gangsters only occurred in Hollywood. Remember how big of deal the St. Valentines Massacre was in 1929? Had that been common, it would not have made it past the local news.

        The use of machine guns by criminals was not affected either way by passage of the NFA. Nor has the use of any other firearm by criminals been altered by any law, because by definition laws do not apply to criminals who commit crimes.

        • If widespread use of machine guns did not happen, why the NFA? Just because of Hollywood movies?

          Criminals are still using machine guns a the same rate as during Prohibition? Ok, media is ignoring the use of actual machine guns, but melting down over bumpfire rifle stocks? Hhhmmm. How did I miss that?

        • SAM I AM; For someone who did not know the difference between the NFA of 1934 and the GCA of 1968 until I explained it to you in posts above, you seem to be willing to continue showing your ignorance and emphatic about staying that way.

          Giving you the benefit of the doubt, to answer your question “why the NFA?” as I stated previously above, the National Firearms Act (NFA) of 1934 was originally created to prevent intercity black people from having handguns.

          Adding short barreled rifles & sawed-off shotguns was to prevent them from being used as concealed weapons (in place of handguns as pistols and revolvers as defined).

          Adding machineguns was feelgood legalization simply used to gain support for the bill, after all, what reasonable person would need a machine gun.

          Machine guns weren’t in common use so it was easy to pick them off and demonize them

          AOW was added as a catchall for everything else.

          Handguns were removed from the legislation before the bill passed.

          To combat game poaching, sound suppressors were a last-minute replacement for handguns (handguns being the original target of the NFA). The legislators realized the people would not stand for a handgun ban, even if they could get it to pass. Striking of handguns was very last minute to get a passing vote.

          “Destructive Devices” were added to the NFA through the GCA of 1968.

        • It doesn’t. What my post did was simply answer your question “why NFA?” and inform you of the facts and circumstances surrounding the creation of the NFA of 1934.

          The NFA was never about machine guns and did not address rarity of any crimes (except in your narrow mind).

        • The political, social and cultural intent of NFA is completely irrelevant to the outcome. Machine guns, not handguns were controlled by NFA. That means all the extraneous crap (racism) was removed from the legislation. NFA did not fall heaviest on minorities. The entire point of my original comment was that at least one gun control law seems to have worked, and we should be careful bellowing that no gun control works, or ever did. To date, crimes committed with a machine gun are insignificantly rare. End. Even the people always blamed for finding a way around the gun laws don’t seem to have found a way to flood the streets with full auto guns. Nor have we seen notable numbers of thefts of full auto weapons. The stories I remember were thefts of full auto weapons from military armories, and the guns ended up south of the border, not in inner cities.

          The only relevant comments regarding effectiveness of NFA pertain to whether NFA was the sole, major, or insignificant element in the reduction of crimes where a machine gun was uses. General success of “gun control” is not germane. Unless we get free of our propensity to answer every challenge with self-confirming, self-comforting sloganeering, we will continue to wallow in self-righteousness, losing the attention and loyalty of the “undecideds”.

        • SAM I AM, at this point, after giving you the benefit of any doubt, I suspect that you are a certified dumb-ass.

          If you knew the first thing about firearms, you would know that gun control laws have never ever reduced crime in any way whatsoever (quite the contrary in fact) and never will, simply because by definition, criminals are completely exempt from all laws.

          Crimes committed with machine guns HAVE ALWAYS BEEN insignificantly rare, which is why they always make the national news (like the North Hollywood bank robbery did).

          Anyone with average intelligence and at least a third-grade education knows how to convert firearms to fully-automatic, some with as little as a paper clip (and have since long before the Internet was even a twinkle in Al Gore’s eye).

          I recommend that you seek professional help with your apparent machine infatuation and fetish as the rest of us could care less about machine guns.

          Even the elite Delta Force, Seals, Rangers, Green Berets, and other Special Forces, do not use full-auto, because semi-auto is far more accurate, practical, and effective.

        • Why, after all the non-germane commentary, is crime committed with machine guns so low as to be insignificant? Do you really believe the gangs wouldn’t want full-auto firepower? Why are police not reporting dozens of attacks by gangers toting guns modified to full auto? Gangers are not accurate enough shooters with semi-auto (and revolvers) that they wouldn’t want full auto to make up for poor marksmanship. Gang shootings are not limited to the intent of settling a score, but to intimidate opposition gang members. What better intimidation than full auto gunfire? Why are full auto guns not common in violent crimes?

          My familiarity with firearms is quite extensive (in large part due to TTAG), but it is exceeded by my familiarity with weapons that make entire cities uninhabitable. The issue here is not familiarity with firearms, but my proposition that NFA resulted in the near elimination of crimes committed with machine guns remains. Either it was/is effective in reducing crimes committed with machine guns, or it wasn’t (with allowance for maybe NFA was only a contributing factor). If NFA was effective, then claiming gun control never works is not valid. Specific claim about crimes with machine guns, nothing else, nothing more. All the peripheral jabbering about social impacts, and hidden intentions, all of that is irrelevant to the discussion. Either NFA had an impact on crimes with machine guns, or it didn’t (to repeat). If it did, we cannot claim no gun control measure ever achieved reduction in associated crime (to repeat).

          So let me be painfully clear: In discussing my original comment, I do not care about secondary, tertiary or lower order effects. I do not care about why NFA was implemented. I do not care whether the NFA caused a reduction in general violent crime, or general violent crime with a gun. Even diverting criminals to a different weapon is a success in reducing crime with the prohibited weapon. The only thing that matters is whether or not NFA was effective regarding reduction in crimes where a machine gun was used.

          If we cannot deal with nuances, we are left looking like the opposition we deride, slinging ineffective slogans and abuse. If we are left with simply repeating the same tired boasting about our purity, are we not displaying the trappings of a religion? Where else do we find refusal to review, reflect, reconsider our understandings? Climate change, I suppose.

    • Just to clarify a point I’ve repeatedly seen the past couple of days here, the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act (FOPA), with the exception of the Hughes Amendment, was a good thing. It did what the name of the act said, which is exceptionally rare. The Hughes Amendment was an addition to the act that was absolutely terrible and made the law not worth it.

      FOPA should be strengthened, and the Hughes Amendment to FOPA should be repealed.

  19. SAM I AM: I don’t know what your problem is, but I’ll bet it’s hard to pronounce, so out of fairness and compassion for the less fortunate, I refrain from engaging in a battle of wits with an unarmed child, for fear that you would further embarrass yourself and come back with something equally stupid as your other posts here.

    I see you’ve set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public.

    One thing is for sure, you definitely could be a very successful guest on the Jerry Springer show as you possess & have already displayed all the trailer trash attributes & fit the white trash scenario perfectly.

    Apparently, you have no understanding of what is beyond the borders of your own ignorance & stupidity.

    To spite all of the valuable knowledge I have shared with you, you have gone to great length to avoid learning anything whatsoever. Apparently you are as slow-witted as you seemed form the beginning.

    I’d like to see things from your point of view, but I refuse to put my head up your butt.

    I can only help one person a day. Today is not your day and tomorrow doesn’t look good either.


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