Archive for the 'Firearms' Category



Should Christians Own Guns?

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 10 hours ago

After ISIS’ slaughter of Christians everywhere they go, the sufferings of the Coptic Christians in Egypt under the Muslim brotherhood, and the kidnapping of young Christian girls by Boko Haram for the purposes of sexual slavery, it may be tempting to ask yourselves, “What kind of an idiot would continue to press the notion that Christ demanded that we disarm in the face of danger?”

The answer is that those idiots are everywhere.  I confess that I have not read Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology.  I have tended to stick more with Charles Hodge, R. L. Dabney, W.G.T. Shedd and the classics.  But my son Joseph has read Grudem, and highly recommends his book to me.  It really isn’t necessary to study Grudem’s details in order to do a takedown of the critique of Grudem (who is pro-self defense and in favor of gun rights) offered by Krish Kandiah at Christianity Today, entitled Should Christians Own Guns: A British Theologian’s Views.

Krish says:

Grudem argues that the reason the Second Amendment was added to the constitution was “to provide another protection against tyranny – to make it harder for any potential dictator or would-be king to take control of the entire nation against the will of the people.” This concern is probably not at the heart of the individual gun control debate at the moment as the right to bear arms against a tyrannical dictatorship is a different question as to whether Christians need to own guns now in a stable democratic environment.

He isn’t very well connected to the current American political scene, is he?  And if a stable environment is all he’s after, Adolf Hitler provided that while be deported the Jews for execution.  As writer Kurt Hofmann and I have both noted, the notion of self defense should include both individual self defense and defense against tyranny.  Only when understood in that light can the current debate in American be enveloped.  It may seem petty to focus on his misunderstanding of the American scene, but when writers show a fundamental misunderstanding of their subject it casts doubt on the value of the work.

Krish continues:

Even if we accept the premise that the there is a right to self-defence this does not necessarily mean the right to own a gun. There will always be limit to the expression of this right that would include a whole range of military hardware; even Grudem recognises that the private ownership of a “machine gun or anti-tank rocket launcher or an anti-aircraft missile launcher” are unnecessary. But still he argues that private hand gun ownership reduces crime as an attacker cannot be sure that their potential victim is unarmed. The counter argument of course is that it could make gun violence more likely as attackers could increasingly assume their victims are armed …

This is as amazing a quote as you will ever see in the gun control debate.  Seriously, read it again and let the bad logic of it wash over you.  He is proffering the argument that ownership of guns makes more likely that attackers will become violent because they will assume their victims are armed.  Thus, according to him, the best way to turn back the “gain” setting on violence is to allow attackers to attack you unmolested so that perhaps things won’t go as badly as they could if you were armed!  You simply can’t make this stuff up, you would have to read it from collectivists in order to believe that someone could actually say or think something like that.

Finally, note that Krish says:

Grudem argues that carrying weapons would help prevent “tragic mass murders in which a lone gunman can hold at bay an entire restaurant or church full of people… are much less likely to happen in states where a large number of people carry concealed weapons.”

But the counter arguments are, firstly, that if guns were more highly regulated then it would be a lot harder for potential mass murderers to get hold of guns in the first place. Secondly, Ellen Painter Dollar argues: “Police officers go through hours of specialized training to help them discern when the use of deadly force is justified. As we know from not a few front-page tragedies involving police shootings, despite such rigorous training, even the best-trained officers don’t always get it right.

Right.  The “best trained” officers.  Like the NYC LEOs who shoot blindly into the darkness, or the South Carolina cop who shot a man in the back, or the police in Buffalo who currently rule the world in dog shootings, or the wild gun play of the Cleveland Police.  The “best trained” officers, he opines.  And here you see irrational faith in LEOs and irrational fear of personal use of weapons.  Always look for the most irrational among us to claim that we are the irrational ones, projecting their fears on the rest of us.

But there is one theme that keeps coming up, and this theme recurs in another critique of Grudem’s work by someone from the Church in Toronto, Nigel Tomes.

David eluded King Saul’s spear; Paul evaded his pursuers by escaping Damascus in a basket; Jesus escaped hostile crowds (Luke 4:29-30; John 8:59). But these are examples of self-preservation, not of self-defense.

And there you have it.  A distinction without a difference – self preservation versus self defense.  Nigel wants men to be unarmed with the best of weapons, just as does Krish, so that they stand the maximum chance of being harmed or killed.  Nigel and Krish don’t care about the children.  They would rather see men, women and children suffer and perish at the hands of evil men, criminals after money, sex or something else, or criminals in the hire of the government, than to acquiesce to the notion that men are made in God’s image and thus life should be preserved.

But the willingness of professors and church leaders to beclown themselves in the name of pacifism goes on to ridiculous proportions with a professor of religion at the University of Texas, John Traphagan.

There are many law-abiding American gun owners who do not go out and kill people and who keep their guns stored safely. But as a whole, Americans do not seem to be able to handle gun ownership in a way that permits maintenance of a civil society. The reality is that the significant numbers of bad apples have spoiled it for those law-abiding gun owners, and it’s time that gun rights organizations such as the National Rifle Association recognize this and begin working with those who want realistic gun control laws, in part as a way of building trust with those who do not own gun.

As if we would pay heed to the NRA in any attempt to increase gun control laws!  No, here is what I think professor Traphagan is talking about.  Crime is highly concentrated among minorities.  Recent riots have been concentrated in minority communities and cities such as Ferguson or Baltimore.  Professor Traphagan knows this.  He is in effect saying that the black community cannot handle the responsibility of gun ownership.  I think professor Traphagan is a racist but doesn’t have the guts to admit his views.  Whites must be disarmed (as if that would be possible without a bloody civil war) in order to bring peace to the black communities.

These things are all pointers, milestones, and signals of a decaying and rotting church, both British and American (although the British church is all but dead, leading the American churches in total irrelevance to anything).  The Episcopal church that has been famously losing people for decades, decided to focus even more on progressive social programs and gun control, and is now losing even more people.  That has happened to the Presbyterian Church in the USA, and between the Presbyterian Church in America, the ARP and other smaller denominations, it cannot be said any more that the PSUSA is the “mainline” Presbyterian denomination.

Except for orthodox, conservative American churches, most American churches today are open sepulchers (and even some orthodox and conservative evangelical churches teach pacifism).

Jesus was a Bohemian, peacenik hippie to the modern American churches.  This is a testimony to how irrelevant, comfortable, self-absorbed and lard-ass the American church is, as also is the fact that hundreds of thousands of Christians can be slaughtered, sent into sexual slavery and driven out of Mesopotamia without so much as an imprecatory prayer by Christians in the West.  Shameful, disgusting, and sickening.  It causes me to turn away in revulsion from the organized American church in disrespect for most of what I see passing for orthodox Christianity today.

Christianity Today is as irrelevant as the American church, as irrelevant as a professor of religion at the University of Texas who wants to disarm law-abiding folks because of a few bad apples, and as irrelevant as the Church in Toronto.  Not a single one of them can manage to construct even a very basic analysis of Christians and self defense.  For the record, I don’t need Wayne Grudem to do that for me.  I have supplied adequate analysis of this issue.  As I’ve summarized before:

I am afraid there have been too many centuries of bad teaching endured by the church, but it makes sense to keep trying.  As I’ve explained before, the simplest and most compelling case for self defense lies in the decalogue.  Thou shall not murder means thou shall protect life.

God’s law requires [us] to be able to defend the children and helpless.  “Relying on Matthew Henry, John Calvin and the Westminster standards, we’ve observed that all Biblical law forbids the contrary of what it enjoins, and enjoins the contrary of what it forbids.”  I’ve tried to put this in the most visceral terms I can find.

God has laid the expectations at the feet of heads of families that they protect, provide for and defend their families and protect and defend their countries.  Little ones cannot do so, and rely solely on those who bore them.  God no more loves the willing neglect of their safety than He loves child abuse.  He no more appreciates the willingness to ignore the sanctity of our own lives than He approves of the abuse of our own bodies and souls.  God hasn’t called us to save the society by sacrificing our children or ourselves to robbers, home invaders, rapists or murderers. Self defense – and defense of the little ones – goes well beyond a right.  It is a duty based on the idea that man is made in God’s image.  It is His expectation that we do the utmost to preserve and defend ourselves when in danger, for it is He who is sovereign and who gives life, and He doesn’t expect us to be dismissive or cavalier about its loss.

This same sort of thinking can be applied on a larger scale to states and nations as so expertly done by professor Darrell Cole in Good Wars (First Things), relying on the theology of both Calvin and Aquinas.  But this is a bridge too far for some Christians who are just now dealing with the notion that they might be in danger.

Now a word of advice for pastor[s] and “theologians” who proffer these laughable interpretations.  It’s things like this that cause congregants to lose respect for the pulpit, and nothing screams the irrelevance of the sermon more than the Biblical impossibility of the pronouncements of the pastor (or in other words, the inconsistency of what he says with the balance of Scripture).  It’s just best to leave your own political aberrations out of the pulpit and teach the Bible.

Or as I’ve repeated elsewhere, John Calvin, commenting on commandment and prohibition, observes:

We do not need to prove that when a good thing is commanded, the evil thing that conflicts with it is forbidden.  There is no one who doesn’t concede this.  That the opposite duties are enjoined when evil things are forbidden will also be willingly admitted in common judgment.  Indeed, it is commonplace that when virtues are commended, their opposing vices are condemned.  But we demand something more than what these phrases commonly signify.  For by the virtue of contrary to the vice, men usually mean abstinence from that vice.  We say that the virtue goes beyond this to contrary duties and deeds.  Therefore in this commandment, “You shall not kill,” men’s common sense will see only that we must abstain from wronging anyone or desiring to do so.  Besides this, it contains, I say, the requirement that we give our neighbor’s life all the help we can … the purpose of the commandment always discloses to us whatever it there enjoins or forbids us to do” (Institutes of the Christian Religion, Vol. 1, Book 2, Chapter viii, Part 9).

Consistency isn’t the Hobgoblin of small minds.  It’s the stuff of life, and even the most dense commentator knows that the Decalogue isn’t subject to the whims of dispensation.  It is a reflection of the very character of God, and thus universally and in all times and epochs, man is made in God’s image and life is to be protected rather than stoically given away to those who would usurp what must fall under the purview of the only potentate, God Himself.  He grants it, and only He can take it or tell others how and when to take it.  When stolid commentators and professors disconnect Christ from the very law He came to fulfill, it’s easy to ascertain that something is very wrong.

Man is made in God’s image.  Careless disregard for life means disregard for God’s law and hypocrisy towards the creator and His words.  Hand-wringing over guns versus knives or clubs or pepper spray or locked doors just means that you’re straining at a gnat in order to swallow a camel.  You (Krish, Nigel and John) don’t care about the women or children.  You’re a self-absorbed, self righteous, pampered product of the effete chattering class, unnecessary to and a bad fit for the very people to whom you are speaking.  No one is listening any more.

Prior:

The Second Amendment Creates A God-Given Right To Bear Arms?

No Guns In Church In Alabama?

Christian Leaders Say No To Christian Militia

Gentlemen, Prepare To Defend Yourselves!

A Desperate Cry From Iraq’s Christians

The PCUSA On Guns

Dear Christians With Guns

Concerning The Nigerian Christian Girls

Guns: Think Of The Children

Does Jesus Shoot An AR-15?

Baptist Forum Does Gun Control

Who Would Jesus Shoot?

The Golden Calf Of Gun Control

Faith And Firearms

Guns And Religion

When Christians Discuss Guns

Christians, The Second Amendment And The Duty Of Self Defense

Update On Remington 700 Settlement

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 6 days ago

CNBC:

The Montana man whose nearly 15-year search for answers about the death of his son paved the way for a nationwide class action settlement with the Remington Arms Co. says the gun maker still is not coming clean. So now, Richard Barber says he is launching a new push to “inform and educate the public” about one of the most popular firearms in the world, and his claim that the guns can fire without the trigger being pulled.

Barber’s 9-year-old son Gus was killed during a family hunting trip in 2000 when a Remington Model 700 rifle went off as the boy’s mother was unloading it. At the worst possible moment, Gus had run behind a horse trailer and into the path of the bullet. Barbara Barber has consistently maintained that her hand was nowhere near the trigger.

Richard Barber says he eventually found thousands of customer complaints and internal documents that suggest Remington had known for decades about an alleged design flaw in the gun’s firing mechanism but did nothing about it despite dozens of deaths and injuries. Allegations of the defect and a cover up—both of which Remington has steadfastly denied—were the subject of the 2010 documentary “Remington Under Fire: A CNBC Investigation.”

“The Model 700, including its trigger mechanism, has been free of any defect since it was first produced,” Remington told CNBC in 2010. “And, despite any careless reporting to the contrary, the gun’s use by millions of Americans has proven it to be a safe, trusted and reliable rifle.”

Last month, a federal judge in Missouri tentatively approved a nationwide settlement in which Remington agreed to replace the triggers on more than 7 million rifles equipped with what has become known as the Walker Fire Control—the same mechanism that was in the Barbers’ rifle. But the company still maintains the guns are safe, and has said it is settling the case to put an end to lengthy litigation. Barber says that stance is part of the reason he feels the need to speak out again.

“I wholeheartedly support the provisions in the class settlement in replacing the triggers,” Barber told CNBC in an interview Monday. As a result, he said, he will not formally object to the tentative settlement. Nonetheless, he said, “Remington’s statements (following the CNBC program in 2010) potentially constitute a fraud that not only endangered the public, but resulted in loss of life.”

Barber said he is concerned that Remington’s continued defense of the gun, as well as the company’s decision at the same time to launch a recall of a much smaller group of Model 700 rifles with a different firing mechanism, could either confuse customers or lull them into complacency.

“No deal is perfect,” he said, acknowledging that the company will likely never agree there is a problem.

“Nothing can force them to do that,” he said.

Remington is still denying any culpability, and Barber isn’t happy.  I told you so, and I told you so.  The most enlightening thing from the article is the comments.  This one is rich.

Once again if the gun wasn’t pointed horizontally this wouldn’t have happened. I can picture it completely. The mom like most women aren’t strong enough to hold the gun up or down while reloading it so she probably had it propped up on her leg with the gun pointing sideways and it went off.

And this one:

Basically comes down to the fact that the parents screwed up, they know it, and they are trying to blame someone else so they can sleep at night. I completely understand with such a tragic accident, but this is all this is about. They want to blame someone for their tragic mistake so they can feel better.

And finally, this:

Once somebody could repeat the condition of auto discharge of Model 700 that will proved the mechanism have a design flaw. But probably will be a lot of work to make it happen. Maybe a robot that will try all kind of positions for hours and hours will do it!

We’ve rehearsed the failures of the Walker fire control system before.  The reports are found here.  In this document, FSR and FOS is “fires when the safety is released,” and “fires on safe,” respectively.  The 700 does both.  There is no excuse for a single instance, ever.  EVER.  Not if the engineer is responsible and ethical and the management has moral fiber.

Is it the fault of the parents?  Yes.  Is it the fault of Remington?  Yes.  It isn’t either-or.  It is both-and.  It’s called defense in depth in firearms design and operation, and if you’re too stupid to understand this, you shouldn’t be posting comments to the internet.

Army Seeks Gun Industry Help On M4 Carbine

BY Herschel Smith
1 month ago

The U.S. Marine Corps led the way.  At the time I said this:

Recall that I told you “that Rock River Arms, Knights Armament, LaRue Tactical and Daniel Defense isn’t the Colt produced under milspec for the Army and Marine Corps (these are all superior to the Colt M-16 and M-4)?”  And recall that John Jay and I have both discussed Milspec and what it does (and doesn’t) mean?

It should also be pointed out that there are many things that can be tweaked on the Stoner platform (Milspec design) that can make it much more reliable than the Colt.

Fouling in the M4 is not the problem. The problem is weak springs (buffer and extractor), as well as light buffer weights (H vs. H2 or H3). With the abovementioned drop-in parts, the M4 is as reliable as any weapon I have ever fired, and I have fired probably every military-issue assault rifle fielded worldwide in the last 60 years as a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant (18B). An additional benefit of the heavier spring/weight combo is that it transmits the energy impulse of the firing cycle to the shoulder over a longer duration, lowering the amount of foot pounds per second and dramatically reducing the perceived recoil. Follow-on shots are easier to make effectively, and much faster, especially at 50 meters and beyond.

I reliably fired 2400 rounds (80 magazines) on a bone dry gun, and I would bet that is a lot more than any soldier or other armed professional will ever come close to firing without any lubrication whatsoever. So, disregard the fouling myth and install a better buffer spring, H2 buffer, enhanced extractor spring and a Crane O-ring (all end user drop-in parts). With normal (read “not excessive”) lubrication and maintenance, properly-built AR-15/M4 type rifles with carbine gas systems will astound you with their reliability and shootability.

The high quality AR-15 manufacturers know all of this and generally make their parts better than Milspec.  But now the Army wants in on the game.

The Army is asking the gun industry to build new components for its soldiers’ primary weapon — the M4 carbine — a move that experts say is a tacit admission that the service has been supplying a flawed rifle that lacks the precision of commercially available guns.

At a recent Capitol Hill hearing, an Army general acknowledged that the M4’s magazine has been responsible for the gun jamming during firefights.

On the federal government’s FedBizOpps.gov website, the Army announced a “market survey” for gunmakers to produce a set of enhancements to essentially create a new model — the “M4A1+.” It would include a modular trigger, a new type of rail fitted around a “free floating” barrel and other parts. The upgrade is supposed to improve the rifle’s accuracy and reliability.

The Army last year took the significant step of beginning to convert the basic M4 into the special operations version, the M4A1, with a heavier barrel designed to better withstand the heat of rapid fire.

The Washington Times reported in 2014 on confidential prewar tests that showed the barrel was prone to overheating. The Times also quoted active-duty soldiers who said the M4 is inferior based on their experience in battle. A Green Beret said he takes the extraordinary step of rebuilding his M4A1 on the battlefield by using components from other gunmakers — technically a violation of Army regulations.

Retired Army Maj. Gen. Robert Scales, an artillery officer and decorated Vietnam combatant, is one of the M4’s most vocal critics. He also believes the 5.56 mm M855A1 ammunition — an environmentally sensitive, or “green,” round — is wrong for the gun.

Gen. Scales said the Army’s new solicitation is further proof of the carbine’s shortfalls.

“It’s another attempt by the Army to make the M4 look good,” he said. “If the Army wants to improve the M4, fine. But it’s not a weapon suitable for high-intensity, close combat in extremes against an enemy who is basically matching us in weapons performance in a close fight. Everybody knows the weapon has flaws.”

Mr. Scales said the M4’s basic shortfall is that it uses gas, or direct, impingement to extract and expel its shells as opposed to a piston system. A piston firing mechanism is in the prolific AK-47, which runs cleaner and cooler but is considered slightly less accurate.

This article is a complete mess.  It goes from things that we’ve discussed before that should be obvious (such as a floated barrel to avoid interference with [natural frequency] barrel harmonics by fixed points), to old battle philosophy (such as the notion that Solders and Marines today shoot Carbines fully automatic as if they are some sort of area suppression weapon like a SAW – seriously, this is thirty or forty year old battle tactics, the stuff of Vietnam rather than the professionally trained fighters of the twenty first century).

It ends (for me, simply because I couldn’t bring myself to read any more) when that loud mouth, washed up old coot General Scales started begging for the piston system again.  Good grief.  He weighs in against the Eugene Stoner platform for CQB, which is ironically the situation in which it is the best weapon on earth by far.  My message is clear.  Just stop.  The main stream media needs to stop being a day late to the story.  We’ve already worked this one over until it’s bloody.  General Scales needs to go home and stop advocating for whatever armament company he’s working for today.  The Marine Corps and Army need to stop telling the world what they are going to do about non-existent problems with their weapons.  They have diarrhea of the mouth.  Wanat and Kamdesh were not caused by weapons problems.  They were caused by the idiot general who deployed Platoon-size U.S. forces to ensconce themselves in valleys to fight off Battalion-size Taliban forces who had the high ground.

But what does need to happen is with the Marine Corps and Army.  The procedures need to change to allow the armorers the freedom and latitude to arm the men with the weapons they need.  If they want Magpul magazines (with the no-tilt follower), then they should get them instead of the ridiculous Milspec magazines with the follower that binds and sticks (yea, it’s happened to me too).  If a free floated barrel is better (and it is), then change the Military specifications to allow a free floated barrel and replace them all.  If stronger buffer springs are better, then replace them all.  Just go do it.  Adapt, improvise and overcome.  Don’t be bureaucratic pointy-heads.

And something needs to happen with Patriots too.  We should all learn from the intransigence of the Army and Marine Corps.  If there is a better part, buy it.  Test it.  Work your weapons systems.  Learn them.  Practice with them.  Procedures are good insofar as they help you.  If they become a hindrance, defenestrate them.  You control them – they do not control you.

And by the way, around these parts we speak the name of Eugene Stoner with hushed reverence.  Do otherwise at your peril.

Prior:

Army And Marine Corps On M855 Ammunition

Marines To Get Rifle Makeovers

Blaming The Gun For The Battle Losses

The Reliability Of The Eugene Stoner Design

Fortune Magazine On Smart Guns

BY Herschel Smith
1 month ago

Fortune:

Doug, who runs the website smartgunz.com, asks us not to use his last name or to identify the town where he works. “I’m just in Nebraska,” he says. “What’s on the website,” he continues, “that’s the information that can be given out. I just want to see where it’s going to go. Take baby steps. Move forward as it progresses.”

A lifetime National Rifle Association member, Doug earns his living as a gunsmith and licensed firearms dealer, selling pistols, revolvers, assault rifles, and machine guns to law enforcement and other qualified customers.

That’s all ho-hum. But smartgunz.com is sensitive stuff, so Doug wants to insulate his mainstream business from it.

Is he dealing in contraband? Peddling vice?

No. Doug is selling the Armatix iP1, a semiautomatic pistol developed by the renowned weapons designer and executive Ernst Mauch. During his more than 30 years with his prior employer, Germany’s Heckler & Koch …

So it starts oh so secretive, with the roll-in to H&K who supplies LEOs, armed forces, and so on.  It’s breathtaking, all this secrecy, or that’s what the author intends.  But remember H&K’s we hate you, no, we mean it, we really hate you attitude towards anyone but LEOs.  As for Doug, I couldn’t care less what he does or what he sells.  The market will determine whether he is successful or not.  I didn’t know about his web site and have no reason ever to visit it.

How out of touch the author is comes clear in this paragraph:

Additionally, the hope is that smart guns could reduce the toll of murdered police officers, killed when their service revolvers are wrested away from them. (From 2004 to 2013, according to FBI statistics, 33 police officers were murdered with their own weapons.)

Now I love me a wheel gun and carry one every day, but find a LEO who still carries a “service revolver.”  No, really, it’s a serious question – find me one.  I bet you can’t.  They all carry semi-auto plastic frame guns now.  If I was a LEO they would have to grant special dispensation to carry a 1911.

If Armatix can persuade such a unit to adopt the iP9, the world will change.

“I’ve never been more optimistic about personalized guns than I am now,” says Stephen Teret, the founding director of the Johns Hopkins University Center for Gun Policy and Research, who has been pushing for safer gun designs for more than 30 years. “It’s going to happen. And the American gun companies can either get on board or they can become Kodak.”

Breathless!  “The world will change!”  You can read the rest of the article on your own time.  The article asks of smart guns, “They’re ready, are we?”  But that isn’t what they really mean.  What they really meant to ask is when America will be ready to have smart guns crammed down our throats by regulation?

The reality is that if there was a demand for smart guns, they would already have a significant market share.  There isn’t, and they don’t.  It all has nothing whatsoever to do with the NRA or NSSF.  As for whether we will allow “smart guns” to be mandated, I can’t think of a better way to foment civil war focusing on 4GW.  The Fortune author wasn’t thinking about that when he asked if we’re ready, was he?  So we might ask the author, are you ready?

Technical Questions On The Walker Fire Control System

BY Herschel Smith
1 month ago

Reader John Stock writes with the following question:

A Remington 722 (barrel date 01-1956) with its original trigger.  I know enough to keep it
flushed out with lighter fluid, but I am concerned that’s not a real fix.  What is your opinion of
Remington’s “fix” of the Walker trigger?  Is Remington’s recall fix adequate, or is an
after-market trigger a better solution?  And if so, which one do you like?

A Remington 721 (barrel date 04-1948) with a Canjar set trigger.  The sear looks the same
as the Walker trigger on the 722 (with the two-bar sear/safety visible), and is as easily
exposed to debris, but I have no idea what the mechanism inside looks like, or whether it is
as susceptible to unintentional release as is the Walker trigger.  Do you have any knowledge
of this trigger and its relative risk?

Any wisdom you can share with me will be much appreciated.

I feel completely inadequate to provide advice and counsel on this, except to say that Remington claims that the problems have to do with “excess bonding agent,” a claim I deem unlikely (or said another way, I doubt that this is the only problem).  If I’m not mistaken, their fix had to do with polishing or resurfacing some component, but my memory may be faulty here.

Please weigh in with comments on the Walker Fire Control system for reader John.

Winchester SPX Shotgun Recall: Guns May Unintentionally Fire

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 1 week ago

In Defense In Depth In Firearms Design And Operation, I explained:

This is why I have always been an advocate of professional engineering registration for firearms designers.  It has nothing to do with supposed qualifications to become a PE, but the legal liability associated with the license.  I can speak from experience.  This legal liability means something special and particular, and you want it in firearms design, whether you know it or not.

You want to follow all of the rules of safety, but you also want firearms that operate as intended because of the fidelity of the design.  Malfunctions because of poor design or fabrication aren’t acceptable, because this defeats the design and operational philosophy of defense in depth.  Yes, follow the rules, and yes, you should be able to rely on well designed products.

It isn’t “either-or.”  It is “both-and.”

And we are presented with an example that precisely demonstrates what I said.

Winchester Repeating Arms has issued a recall on some of its SXP-model 12-gauge shotguns that the company says may fire while the discharge is being closed.

A YouTube video is making its way around the Internet showing a gun owner seemingly demonstrating the flaw with the gun’s safety on, although Winchester has not officially confirmed that the video is related (see video below).

Winchester issued the following recall:

“Winchester Repeating Arms has discovered that a limited number of SXP (3½-inch chamber) shotguns (also called the Super X Pump) may, under certain circumstances, unintentionally discharge while closing the action. Failure to return any affected shotguns for inspection and/or repair may create a risk of harm, including serious personal injury or death.

“If you own one of the following firearms, please immediately contact our Winchester Consumer Administrative Center to find out if your firearm is affected and should be returned. Please be prepared to provide the serial number of your firearm.”

Guns listed under the recall include are the Waterfowl Hunter (26- or 28-inch barrel), Black Shadow (26- or 28-inch barrel), Turkey Hunter (24-inch barrel) and Long Beard (24-inch barrel).

The relevant video is below.

It’s best that Winchester is getting on top of this and issuing the recall.  I hope they take full responsibility for the design deficiency.  It would be more than Remington did with the 700 series trigger problems.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 1 week ago

David Codrea:

“Terri and I made a decision to put this deal together [to] attempt to reconstruct our family’s lives,” Rick Reese noted, explaining to this column why a settlement attempt could spell the end of four years of torment and uncertainty wherein the family has received insufficient outside assistance to press on. Barring surprises from the government reneging on agreements to bring the matter to closure, that reconstruction may be forthcoming.

Hey, if you’re fighting the behemoth of the federal government, this is about as good as it’s going to get.  It occurs to me that the government doesn’t need the weapons, and they don’t need the proceeds from the sale of the weapons.  They are doing this for vengeance and spite.

David also gives us the following practical note: “Sometimes real life calls. I was out all day yesterday taking care of other business, and unless somebody comes over and volunteers to do my first yard work of Spring for me, I have some rich, full days ahead of me this weekend.”  He ends with this: “The thought of sitting under the trees later this afternoon with a book, a beer and a stogie after I finish up today’s labors seems pretty attractive.”  Yes, to all of the above.  I know how David feels.  I am in the middle of a difficult move down the road a piece, and the time it takes to fix every little problem with the house, close on two loans, perform inspections of the new house, and on and on the pain goes, is about to kill me.  Please be patient with my lack of posts as well.

Mike is in Colorado.  Pray for his success and safety.

Via Mike, Bob Owens doesn’t like the tactical aspects of open carry.  I’ve seen this argument before, and I don’t buy it but I don’t begrudge the belief.  If someone wants to conceal, that’s just fine with me.  But what I don’t like about Bob’s argument is that he seems to blame the crime on the fact of open carry, as if the primary cause of the sin was an innocent person openly carrying a weapon.  Of course, that’s a stupid position if Bob is actually saying that.  God will by no means leave the guilty unpunished (Ex 34:7, Num 14:18).

You mean to tell me we don’t have universal background checks on aerosol cans, sledge hammers and canes?  I’m astonished!  I told you this sort of thing would happen, and I demand Congressional action on assault hammers.

Concealed Carrier Stops Attacker

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 1 week ago

Yakima Herald:

YAKIMA, Wash. — A 32-year-old man who was shopping with at least three children at a Yakima Wal-Mart was the victim of an unprovoked assault when a stranger picked up a metal tee-ball bat and struck him, according to Yakima police.

The victim was not injured, but he did have a concealed weapons permit, which he immediately put to use, police said.

A store security officer reported hearing a man in the sporting goods department yelling “Get on the ground!” and found one man pointing a pistol at another, who was lying on the floor.

Police arrived a short time later and arrested the 30-year-old suspect, who remains in Yakima County jail in lieu of $30,000 bail set Monday.

The incident took place about 11:20 a.m. Saturday at the east Yakima Wal-Mart.

The victim told police he did not know the suspect, nor had the two exchanged any words before he was hit by the bat, according to an affidavit filed by police.

A video from the store’s security system shows the victim shopping with at least three children. According to the affidavit, the video shows some of the children move out of view as a man is seen coming over, picking up a metal tee-ball bat from a rack and striking the other man in the shoulder with it.

The victim, who police said has had a concealed pistol license since March 2013, then pulled a .357 Sig Sauer pistol from a holster and pointed it at the suspect, the affidavit said.

Well, okay, as long as the perpetrator believes that the person holding the weapon will shoot him if he attempts to escape, this method can be successful.  But don’t ever do this and actually shoot the perpetrator trying to run from you.  You can only shoot if your life is in danger, contrary to what some people believe.

The Sporting Purposes Tweak

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

In order to understand the sporting purposes tweak, you need to read this article cited David Codrea.  This weapon shouldn’t be an NFA device to begin with regardless of barrel length because it doesn’t have a butt stock.  But David initially reported this.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ classification of pistol grip only firearms with 14” barrels that fire shotgun shells and are over 26” in overall length as neither “shotguns” nor National Firearms Act “Destructive Devices” or “Any Other Weapons” has created a situation wherein the agency must either quietly save face or have it exposed that untold numbers of good faith gun owners currently legally possess firearms problematic for the government to allow. In order for that status quo to continue, ATF, in conjunction with certain members of Congress and lobbying interests, is working at “tweaking” its definition of the arbitrary “sporting use” term, insider sources tell Gun Rights Examiner. And with that will come a push to expand definitions to allow for further importation bans on certain types of presently legal ammunition

Mike Vanderboegh (who is at the NRA convention) follows up with this.

Sipsey Street Irregulars can now confirm the broad outlines of a story first disclosed two days ago by National Gun Rights Examiner columnist David Codrea. Last week, a secret deal involving the National Rifle Association lobbying arm and brokered by politicians of both national political parties was struck in Washington DC that would save the ATF from the political and legal consequences of its own regulatory errors. In the process, this deal would broaden the language of the 1968 Gun Control Act regarding “sporting purposes” and allow ATF to extract itself from the potentially catastrophic political damage of enforcing its arbitrary ruling that makes every owner of a pistol grip 12 Gauge shotgun like the Mossberg Cruiser a felon in possession of a “destructive device” subject to the penalties of the National Firearms Act of 1934 — currently up to 10 years in federal prison and a quarter million dollar fine.

[ … ]

“There are people currently rotting in federal prison on NFA violations and others walking around scot-free. At some point, unless the Congress gives them the cover by changing the law, they are going to have to explain that in open court.”

[ … ]

… other sources familiar with the internal fallout of these revelations say that David Codrea’s original story was “spot on,” adding “they can’t believe they were found out.” Other sources in the nation’s capitol indicate that the deal was intended to be kept secret until it could be attached as a innocuous rider at the last moment to a “must-pass” appropriations bill. Said one: “The plan was to pass it, claim victory on all sides, and pray that no one noticed the ‘sporting purposes tweak.'”

Well, it’s been noticed thanks to David’s hard work.  David follows up his first article with this update.  Basically, the NRA and politicians from both parties are planning to give the ATF cover for their misuse of power, abusive rulemaking, and contradictory guidance.

The sporting purposes test remains in my estimation the most unconstitutional abomination in firearms laws in history.  There is no basis whatsoever for such a thing, nor could there be such a basis as “sporting purposes” for disallowing ownership of certain kinds of firearms given that the second amendment has nothing whatsoever to do with sporting.

The most disturbing thing is that politicians from both sides of the isle are planning to give cover to the ATF, and those politicians will be given cover by the NRA.  Shame on the NRA, and the NRA board of directors is making it difficult if not impossible to trust them, even a single one of them.

God’s governance and economy requires that men face the consequences of their actions.  There is no free ride, and when a government bureau has acted in bad faith, they must accept the punishment.  As for the Congress, the only acceptable tweak … let me say this again for emphasis … the only acceptable tweak to the sporting purposes test is to undo it entirely and erase it from the face of the earth.  Anything else will be considered treason by gun owners across America.  And we will know who you are.  Watch your step, men.  Gun owners never forget.

South Carolina Communists On Gun Laws

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

WSPA.com:

More than 200,000 South Carolinians have concealed weapons permits. Some Upstate gun instructors say there’s no way to know if all of those people meet all the requirements to carry a weapon in public.

Johnny Horton, former Army gunner and card-carrying member of the National Rifle Association, love his firearms and doesn’t go anywhere without his pistol.

He says South Carolina’s concealed weapons permit law terrifies him.

The law forces the state to issue a permit to anyone who passes a CWP course and shows either proof of 20/40 vision within 6 mont5hs or a valid driver’s license.

You need 20/40 vision to get a driver’s license, but gun instructors say just because you have one doesn’t mean you have good enough eyesight to safely handle a gun. That’s because the state only requires drivers to update them every 10 years.

“They are shooting in the dark,” Horton explains.

He says he knows there are people out there who aren’t qualified; those who have lost their sight within the last 3 years and have a CWP.

Warren Sanders, a CWP instructor, didn’t lose his eyesight, but ran into some serious problems with his vision a while back.

Sanders knew he had no business handling a gun at the time, but under state law, he could still carry a concealed weapon.

“I personally have had cataract surgery,” he says. “My vision deteriorated. I saw the need for corrective lenses and took care of it.”

Sanders says his concern is people like him who have vision problems, but don’t tell anyone and use a valid driver’s license to take advantage of what he calls a loophole in the law to get a concealed weapons permit.

“A person may make a decision based on faulty vision and it may cost someone else dearly,” he adds.

There’s no way to know how many people out there don’t meet the vision requirement, but are carrying guns. But Horton says there’s one thing we do know: they’re out in public with the rest of us.

“The last place you want to be is in the grocery store and catch a stray bullet while you’re buying a loaf of bread,” he says.

And so what do Messrs Horton and Sanders recommend?  Allowing gun “instructors” to perform eye examinations?  Or perhaps forcing gun permit holders to obtain yearly eye examinations and submit the results to the state for approval for continuation of their permit?

This is called corruption, and we in North Carolina have had our share too.  Mr. Jim Black was convicted when he pushed legislation through to force minors to obtain eye examinations from Optometrists prior to entering school (and Mr. Black is, not coincidentally, an Optometrist).  There is more to this than meets the eye.  I want to know what’s in it for Messrs Horton and Sanders.

And as for Mr. Sanders, who ran into serious problems with his eyesight a few years ago and “took care of it,” would he have forced people in similar positions to interact with the state to do what he did?  He knows that he isn’t going to be buying a load of bread and “catch a stray bullet” from a blind permit holder.  That is perhaps the stupidest thing I have every seen in print, and the “journalist” is a rube and tool for printing it.  He’s invoking the “boogeyman under the bed” tactic.  Boo! … boo! … be askeerd.  Wild gun battles in the streets and stores by blind men!

I think we can safely put Horton and Sanders in the same category as State Senator Larry Martin of Pickens, S.C., who opposed open carry legislation in S.C. because those horrible Negros might open carry around Charleston, affecting the tourism industry (“The word is the SC tourism industry lobby killed the open carry bill. It was feared that “minority youth” walking around Charleston with pistols strapped to their hips would scare off the tourists”).  They are all communists.  They deserve to be treated as such.


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