A collection of relevant and timely media clips and resources.
Posted on August 28, 2001
They aren`t used in crimes, but they might be one day.1 Not just any crimes, of course. No, they won`t be used to rob liquor stores, settle disputes between rival drug-trafficking gangs, or commit other crimes that happen in the real world. Costing thousands of dollars, measuring 4-5 feet in length, and weighing 22-34 pounds, they`re way too expensive and cumbersome for run-of-the-mill lowlifes. But, claim a few of the most radical anti-gun activists, they might--just might--be used to damage power transformers, armored limousines, and helicopters, crimes which may not make the police blotter in your (or anyone else`s) home town, but which happen all the time in "action" novels, movies, and TV shows, and, evidently, in the activists` imagination. Ridiculous in the extreme, this fear-mongering is currently being peddled by--you guessed it--the Violence Policy Center (VPC). Those who are familiar with the group might say, "Consider the source," given its cynical positions and preposterous claims over the years. For a sampling of VPC nonsense, see page two.
VPC`s Ultimate Goal -- Just as there can be no mistake about VPC`s credibility in this instance (or any other), there should be no mistake about its motives. VPC is not interested in restricting .50 caliber rifles alone. They are trying to create a bogus .50 caliber rifle "issue," hoping to use it to achieve what they really want: to have the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (BATF, or ATF) given regulatory authority to ban all handguns, and to ban or severely restrict all other firearms.
VPC proposes that .50 caliber rifles be restricted by giving BATF the authority to "regulate the design, manufacture, and distribution of firearms and ammunition" and to "ban certain models or classes of weapons." VPC`s support for such a scheme is long-standing, though.2 In 1994, VPC disparaged the legislative process as "piecemeal" and said, "It is essential that a comprehensive regulatory strategy be instituted at the federal level. . . . Handguns should be banned from future sale" and "ATF should be empowered to operate as a health and safety agency with the ability to set safety standards for firearms. . . (,) restrict the availability of specific firearms, classes of firearms and firearm products . . . (and) take immediate action to stop the sale and distribution of firearms or firearm products found to be `imminent hazards.`"
VPC Hypocrisy -- For many years, VPC has said that handguns should be banned because they are too small, but now says that .50 caliber rifles should be banned because they are too big. VPC calls .50 caliber rifles "the exact opposite" of "assault weapons," but advocates restrictions on both anyway. After complaining about other bowls of porridge being too hot or too cold, Goldilocks at least eventually found a bowl that was "just right." The VPC, though, will never agree that there is a gun that`s "just right" for the American people.
.50 Caliber Rifle Facts
1. Campaigning for her federal "assault weapons" legislation, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) admitted that the guns were rarely used in crimes, but said, "I have no doubt in the next 10 years it (crimes with assault weapons) is going to climb, and I am not willing to wait." For the record, Sen. Feinstein`s prediction proved to be false.
2. Frustrated by their inability to get guns banned by legislative means, anti-gun activists have increasingly turned to means intended to circumvent the legislative process: regulatory schemes and frivolous strict liability lawsuits.
.50 Caliber Rifles
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.READ MORE
© 2014 National Rifle Association of America. Institute for Legislative Action. This may be reproduced. It may not be reproduced for commercial purposes.11250 Waples Mill Rd. Fairfax, VA 22030 1800-392-8683(VOTE)