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Follow the Science Chipman! “Assault Weapons” Bans Don’t Work.

Monday, June 7, 2021

Follow the Science Chipman! “Assault Weapons” Bans Don’t Work.

During director of Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives nominee David Chipman’s May 26 Senate confirmation hearing, the paid anti-gun activist worked to obscure the woeful record of the 1994 Clinton “assault weapons” ban. That ban prohibited the sale of certain types of commonly-owned semiautomatic firearms, and magazines with a capacity greater than 10 rounds. Prompted by a question from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Chipman described the data regarding the ban’s efficacy as “mixed.” In truth, the Clinton semi-auto ban was a failure that even the federal government has acknowledged as ineffective. 

The key to understanding why bans on commonly-owned semiautomatic firearms like the AR-15 rifle do not and cannot reduce violent crime is acknowledging the fact that these firearms are rarely used in violent crime.

Consider, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting data, rifles were used in connection with 364 homicides in 2019. More than four times that number of murders involved a knife or other cutting instrument (1,476 such murders), and there were more murders using blunt objects (397) or personal weapons like hands, fists, or feet (600) than involved a rifle of any type.

Faced with the reality that so-called “assault weapons,” are rarely used to commit violent crime, a 1997 Department of Justice-funded study of the 1994 Clinton ban determined that “At best, the assault weapons ban can have only a limited effect on total gun murders, because the banned weapons and magazines were never involved in more than a modest fraction of all gun murders.”

The study also noted,

We were unable to detect any reduction to date in two types of gun murders that are thought to be closely associated with assault weapons, those with multiple victims in a single incident and those producing multiple bullet wounds per victim.

A 2004 follow-up Department of Justice-funded study came to a similar conclusion. The study determined that “AWs [assault weapons] and LCMs [large capacity magazines] were used in only a minority of gun crimes prior to the 1994 federal ban,” “relatively few attacks involve more than 10 shots fired,” and “the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.”

Presented with the overwhelming evidence that the ban was ineffective, Congress did not renew it. 

In 2013, the Department of Justice’s National Institute of Justice surveyed the available research on a host of gun control measures for the Obama administration. Regarding a semiautomatic ban, the report determined “Assault weapons are not a major contributor to gun crime,” and that therefore, “a complete elimination of assault weapons would not have a large impact on gun homicides.” 

In 2018, the RAND Corporation released a comprehensive study that surveyed the available research on several gun control policies. As part of the study, RAND researchers sought to determine “How Bans on the Sale of Assault Weapons and High-Capacity Magazines Affect Gun Use Outcomes.” The study stated, “We found no qualifying studies showing that bans on the sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines decreased any of the eight outcomes we investigated.” The “gun use outcomes” studied included “violent crime.”

The evidence is clear, banning commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms and their accessories doesn’t work. Chipman and the broader gun control movement’s continued advocacy for a failed policy measure reveals that their political project isn’t motivated by a desire for “gun safety,” reducing violence, or “public health,” but rather a religious passion for civilian disarmament.

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Washington: Another Year – Another Extreme Gun Ban!

Friday, January 14, 2022

Washington: Another Year – Another Extreme Gun Ban!

The legislature only just gaveled in this week and anti-gun legislators and gun control groups couldn’t wait to reintroduce their extreme gun ban legislation - an "assault weapons" ban, Senate Bill 5217.

Washington:  The Hits Keep on Coming as Magazine Ban Pulled to the Senate Floor

Friday, January 14, 2022

Washington: The Hits Keep on Coming as Magazine Ban Pulled to the Senate Floor

On Friday, the Washington Senate pulled magazine ban legislation, Senate Bill 5078 to the Senate Floor where it is eligible for a vote for passage.

What You Need to Know about ATF’s New eForms System

News  

Monday, January 10, 2022

What You Need to Know about ATF’s New eForms System

On December 23, ATF launched a new system for applicants to complete various forms that ATF is responsible for administrating. For most gun owners, this change will primarily impact how applications for firearms regulated under ...

Indiana: House Passes Lawful Carry, Sends To Senate

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Indiana: House Passes Lawful Carry, Sends To Senate

Yesterday, the House voted 64-29 to pass House Bill 1077, the lawful carry bill. It will now go to the Senate for further consideration.

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

Canada, Six Months from “Confiscation Day”

News  

Monday, November 8, 2021

Canada, Six Months from “Confiscation Day”

In early 2020, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced his so-called “assault weapon” ban along with a temporary amnesty period that allows the owners of newly-banned firearms to possess their property without incurring criminal liability. Canadians affected ...

Wisconsin: Senate Committee Passes Constitutional Carry

Friday, January 14, 2022

Wisconsin: Senate Committee Passes Constitutional Carry

Yesterday, the Senate Committee on Insurance, Licensing and Forestry voted to pass Senate Bill 619, the constitutional carry bill. It is now eligible for floor debate in the full Senate.

Anti-Gun Provisions Dropped from House-Passed NDAA

News  

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Anti-Gun Provisions Dropped from House-Passed NDAA

Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a revised version of the FY22 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the annual defense bill that directs funding for our nation’s military. The two anti-gun provisions that were included ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Monday, June 30, 2014

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

Georgia: 2022 Legislative Session Convenes Today

Monday, January 10, 2022

Georgia: 2022 Legislative Session Convenes Today

Today, January 10th, the Georgia Legislature begins the 2022 legislative session. Last week, Governor Brian Kemp announced his support for constitutional carry. Currently, 21 states allow law-abiding adults to carry a concealed handgun for self-defense without having to ...

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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.