Irrational Christian Bias Against Guns, Violence And Self Defense

Herschel Smith · 22 May 2016 · 32 Comments

Several examples of Christians opposing all violence and means of self defense have been in the news lately, and I can't deal with all such examples.  But three particular examples come to mind, and I first want to show you one example from Mr. Robert Schenck in a ridiculously titled article, Christ or a Glock. "Well, first of all you're making an immediate decision that if someone invades your home, they are going to die," Rev. Schenck replied. "So you are ready to kill another human being…… [read more]

Ammunition Supply Chain Choke Point?

BY Herschel Smith
3 months ago

David Codrea gives a rundown of the recent actions by the ATF on the ammunition supply chain.

“ATF was recently asked about the status of nitrocellulose under the Federal explosives laws and regulations,” the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives noted in its… industry newsletter. “‘Nitrocellulose explosive’ is on ATF’s List of Explosive Materials.”

Who did the asking—and what their motives were—was left unsaid.

“ATF has determined that nitrocellulose containing greater than 12.6 percent nitrogen is a high explosive under 27 CFR, Part 555 (nitrocellulose containing 12.6 percent or less nitrogen is generally not an explosive material under Part 555),” the release explained. “Therefore, it must be stored in a type 1 or type 2 magazine.

“We are aware that the US Department of Transportation may assign a nonexplosive classification to nitrocellulose when it has been wetted with water or alcohol,” the advisory acknowledged. “This is based, in part, on the diminished likelihood of explosion in a transportation accident.

“Because the nitrocellulose retains its explosive characteristics when the water or alcohol is removed, the wetted nitrocellulose remains a nitrocellulose explosive, subject to the licensing, safety and security requirements of the Federal explosives regulations,” the post concluded. “However, based upon the diminished likelihood of wetted nitrocellulose exploding, ATF will consider variance requests to store the wetted material under an alternative arrangement.”

David continues with the potential affects of said ruling.

So what’s the impact of ATF coming up with new rules for wetted nitrocellulose?

“Manufacturers and importers of smokeless propellant have relied on ATF private letter rulings issued prior to 2016 stating that nitrocellulose wetted with water not less than 25 percent by mass is not subject to regulation under the federal explosives laws,” the response explained. Their entire operations have been set up “consistent with nitrocellulose not being regulated as an explosive.”

Everything from storage to record-keeping and more would be thrown for a loop. Also impacted would be “contracts to supply smokeless propellant and finished rounds of ammunition to the Department of Defense.”

Read the rest of David’s analysis for some very good questions.  Bob Owens also discussed this.

There were some panicked posts earlier this week in some other firearms-focused sites which claimed the ATF had redefined wetted nitrocellulose as a high explosive, and that this redefinition would dramatically affect the availability and cost of ammunition.

Someone had a question about wetted nitrocellulose, the ATF tried to answer that question in their newsletter, and did so in a manner that drew an unintended and unexpected “the sky is falling!” response.

They’ve now issued an addendum to their newsletter which amounts to, “Dudes, chill.”

There’s a whole lot of snark in Bob’s writeup, and inappropriately so.  I don’t see the post at AllOutdoor.com as a “sky is falling” assessment at all.  The initial ATF answer chose a potential critical path of the logistics chain in the ammunition manufacture process and emplaced an entirely new regulatory scheme on it.  It might have been catastrophic.  The aborted ruling isn’t made up by any writer or commenter.  The ATF said it.  It’s their own words.

As regular readers know, the federal executive is out of control.  The legislature is stocked with demons, pit vipers and gargoyles, and the judiciary has never seen a law or regulation, real or imagined, they didn’t love.  This sounds a lot like something they would promulgate on the gun owning community.

For my part, I think there are a lot of questions that need to be asked.

Why did this come up, and who asked the question?

Who fabricated the response by the ATF, and how far up the chain of command did the approval go?

Wouldn’t something like this be considered rule making and therefore be subject to entry into the federal register, with a comment period and necessary responses, and then codified into the code of federal regulations?

Did the ATF contact and collaborate with the Department of Transportation on this aborted rule making, or did they simply assume that the DOT had no comments and had all the necessary resources to pull off control of this new regulatory scheme?

Did any Department of Justice lawyers evaluate this aborted ruling?

Is there any technical basis whatsoever for the ATF position in the aborted rule making?  Has this been reviewed by a registered professional engineer and is the report he wrote available for public review?  Does the Department of Justice (ATF) have a differing professional opinion (DPO) process like other departments of the federal executive, and is this process available for use by the public like other programs?

Has an economic impact study been performed?

Did anyone in the White House know about this?

This is only the beginning of the questions.  You can safely rely on one thing.  I will greatly increase and enhance the list of questions sent to the federal government if the ATF proposes this as formal rule making.

The reader is invited to fill in the comments with his own questions and observations.

Assessment Of Ammunition Manufacturers

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 5 months ago

Vox:

America’s shooters have had around five years of trouble finding enough bullets for their guns. In the years after President Obama’s 2008 election, then again after the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting, with barely a lull in between, big-spending gun aficionados left manufacturers struggling to keep shelves full. Now, the shortage seems to be winding down.

Demand has remained high since 2008, in part because some gun owners, frightened that Obama would tighten gun control laws, went into panic mode. But that’s only one side of it. The problem is that supply never seemed to quite meet that demand. And that’s in part because even though they haven’t said so, skittish manufacturers don’t believe the panic will last long enough to make it worth the investment in costly new factories.

[ … ]

Whatever the numbers might be, there’s plenty of evidence that ammunition demand has been unusually high. According to one ammunition manufacturer, the shortage situation has been in effect nearly every year since September 11.

“Our company has been in a backorder situation since 9/11. There’s only been one year since 9/11 where we haven’t been working overtime,” says Kristi Hoffman, co-owner of Black Hills Ammunition in Rapid City, South Dakota.

[ … ]

he gun industry has acknowledged that politics drive gun-buying. Knowing that, manufacturers are reluctant to invest in lots of expensive new facilities when they’re afraid the political mania could vanish at any moment. But as Guns and Ammo reported last year, America’s ammunition manufacturers have been operating at or near capacity for a decade, and reluctant to boost that capacity.

many companies will only expand as far as their current workers and machinery will take them.

[ … ]

“Beyond that, you have to say, ‘How is my crystal ball here? Is this going to go on for the next 10 years so I can hire more people, I can build on to my facility? or is this going to be done in 6 months or 18 months?” says Hoffman. “Typically in our industry what people do — like us — you run as hard as you can with the people you have.”

It’s as I had suspected all along.  There has been crisis buying, but beyond that, the stocks have been depleted and are slow to recover.  Manufacturers are understandably reluctant to hire people and then have to lay them off later if demand subsides.  Good people in manufacturing don’t like affecting livelihoods.

Larry Hyatt (of Hyatt Gun Shop) and I were having a conversation recently, and he told me that his experience is that the gun control threat from the administration had caused crisis buying of guns and that peak has subsided, but that the trajectory is still upward.

NICS

Mike Vanderboegh once said, when asked what he was doing, “I’m trying to buy more time.”  Good.  We all need more time.  Prepare now for your needs in the future.  And don’t ever expect the ammunition stocks to completely recover.  Demand, like gun ownership, will be on an upward trajectory, while manufacturing will continue as is.

The Feds And Ammo

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 10 months ago

From Instapundit:

INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY: Why Are The Feds Loading Up On So Much Ammo? “According to one estimate, just since last spring DHS has stockpiled more than 1.6 billion bullets, mainly .40 caliber and 9mm. That’s sufficient firepower to shoot every American about five times. Including illegal immigrants. To provide some perspective, experts estimate that at the peak of the Iraq war American troops were firing around 5.5 million rounds per month. At that rate, DHS is armed now for a 24-year Iraq war.”

Wicked fascists.  If you’re in this line of work, you ought to go home tonight, fall on your knees, beg God for forgiveness and then turn in your resignation.  You will answer for your sin of totalitarianism one day.  God does not approve of your world view, and He manages the economy of His creation by spheres of influence and authority, the Church, State and Family, all accountable to Him and none with the authority to override the other’s domain.  You have usurped God’s natural order.

Shame on you, now or in eternity.  Beware.  God will not be mocked.

Prior: So Why Does DHS Need 1.6 Billion Rounds Of Handgun Ammunition?

More On ATF Ruling On Sporting Purposes For Ammunition

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 12 months ago

Following up on ATF Ruling On Sporting Purposes Exemption To Armor Piercing Ammunition, Cam Edwards talks to John Frazer, NRA-ILA’s Director of Research and Information, in a very informative video.  It’s worth watching.

ATF Ruling On Sporting Purposes Exemption To Armor Piercing Ammunition

BY Herschel Smith
4 years ago

Courtesy of Say Uncle, the NRA has caught indication of what could be a very important ATF ruling, if not for what it does, certainly for the precedent it sets.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is taking public comments on its website until December 31, with regard to how it should determine what types of projectiles meet the “sporting purposes” exception to the federal “armor piercing ammunition” law. At this time, the question centers primarily around rifle-caliber projectiles made of metals harder than lead, such as the Barnes Bullets solid brass hunting bullets.

Under the law, adopted in 1986, “armor piercing ammunition” is defined as “a projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper, or depleted uranium.” A second definition, added in the 1990s, includes “a full jacketed projectile larger than .22 caliber designed and intended for use in a handgun and whose jacket has a weight of more than 25 percent of the total weight of the projectile.”

Because handguns have been made in certain rifle calibers, many bullets that were designed originally for rifles also “may be used in a handgun.” If such projectiles are made of the metals listed in the law, they are restricted as “armor piercing ammunition” unless they meet one of the law’s exemptions. Being considered at this time is the exemption for “a projectile which the Attorney General finds is primarily intended to be used for sporting purposes.”

Last week, BATFE met separately with gun control activist groups, firearm industry groups, and groups representing hunters and other gun owners. The latter meeting included the NRA; Safari Club International; representatives of state wildlife agencies; and firearm and ammunition importers.

BATFE has expressed two opinions about the law and exemption that warrant particular scrutiny.

First, BATFE suggested that it believes that the “armor piercing ammunition” law was intended to affect all ammunition capable of penetrating soft body armor worn by law enforcement officers. NRA reminded BATFE that the law was intended to protect law enforcement officers against the potential threat posed a very narrowly-defined category of projectiles: those, such as KTW and Arcane, which by virtue of their hard metal construction were designed and intended to be used by law enforcement officers to shoot through hard objects, such as automobile glass and doors, when fired at the velocities typical of handgun-caliber ammunition fired from handguns. Neither before nor since the law’s enactment, has an officer been killed due to such a bullet penetrating soft body armor.

NRA further pointed out that the legislative history of the law clearly shows that members of Congress, including the sponsor of the law in the House, Rep. Mario Biaggi (D-N.Y.), a decorated former NYPD police officer, expressly did not want the law to restrict rifle-caliber bullets that happen to also be useable in handguns chambered to use rifle cartridges.

Second, BATFE says it considers projectiles to not be exempt under the “sporting purposes” test if they “pose a threat to public safety and law enforcement.” BATFE also expressed concern that since the law was adopted, various new rifle-caliber handguns have been invented. On that point, NRA made clear that the sporting purposes exemption is straightforward: it applies to all projectiles that are “primarily intended for sporting purposes”–nothing more, and nothing less. Under the law, a projectile would be exempt if it is primarily intended for sporting purposes, even if it is secondarily intended for self-defense or some other legitimate purpose. Furthermore, the law does not condition its restrictive language or its “sporting purposes” exemption on the design of a particular handgun; the law is concerned only with specific projectiles that can be used in handguns. NRA cautioned the BATFE against interpreting the law in a manner more restrictive than Congress intended.

I think that the NRA comments are, in the main, on target.  It’s easy to conflate purposes for laws that were crafted so long ago.

Also see the comments at Say Uncle.  I agree that this will end up in an effort to control long gun ammunition, and have recommended before the complete abolition of the ATF as an unwarranted, unconstitutional and wasteful intrusion on the rights of citizens of the U.S.

Take careful note, too, what they say concerns them: “BATFE also expressed concern that since the law was adopted, various new rifle-caliber handguns have been invented.”

I wonder how many Department of Justice employees are equally concerned when SWAT teams raids the homes of unsuspecting and incorrect targets, such as Mr. Eurie Stamps, or Ms. Zaelit, or Mr. Tuppeny, or Ms. Lloyd, or Thomas and Rosalie Avina, or Mr. Kenneth Wright?  Statists will be statists.  Can a leopard change its spots?

Finally, this issue of the sporting purposes test is laughable.  The ATF didn’t listen when I pointed this out before, and they aren’t likely to start now.  It isn’t that the test is difficult, or convoluted, or hard to apply, but necessary nonetheless because it’s the law.  The issue is that it is self referentially incoherent.  It cannot be logically applied because it presupposes the consequent.

The ATF must decide what is the “sporting purposes” category by populating the list with examples, and then make the claim that such-and-such an example is deemed to be or not to be a “sporting purpose” because it is or isn’t on the list.  It reasons in a circle.

Not that the ATF will care.  And not that they will care what we have to say about ammunition either.

UPDATE: Thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the attention!

UPDATE #2: See also David Codrea, Mike Vanderboegh and Kurt Hofmann.

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