There’s a company out there, Wolfe Publishing, which publishes books and magazines about outdoor sports, which means hunting and sport shooting, in case you didn’t know. If you scroll through the Wolfe website, you’ll notice that it’s almost entirely focused on hunting and sport shooting, the latter subject covered by articles and books on handloading ammunition, customizing hunting rifles, discussions about where and how to hunt different species of game.
Ever hear of paper-patching ammunition? I just bought a book on the subject from this website — I didn’t think there was anyone still alive who knew anything about paper-patching ammo at all.
This website and the products it sells would be typical of the gun business were it not for the fact that the United States is the only country in the entire world which allows law-abiding residents to purchase, own and walk around the neighborhood with guns that are designed and used as weapons of war, i.e., guns whose sole purpose is to be carried into battle by military troops.
Now I can understand how and why a military trooper isn’t going to patrol a street in a place like Kabul or Baghdad without carrying an AR-15 or a Sig M-18, which happen to be the guns currently issued to U.S. troops but can also be bought at any gun shop that you choose.
Of course, gun makers like Sig, Glock and Bushmaster will tell you that such weapons are necessary for civilian ownership because we have the God-given ‘right’ to protect ourselves and use a gun for armed, personal defense. The only problem with this nonsense is that title notwithstanding, the Bill of Rights doesn’t grant any ‘rights’ at all. In this country, ‘rights’ are defined not by God but by laws.
Want to live in countries where God has the last word when it comes to ‘rights,’? Move to Afghanistan or Iran.
The fact that our legal system and the laws covering gun ownership doesn’t differentiate between guns as ‘sporting’ products versus guns being designed solely for the purpose of killing a human being is what yesterday’s decision about Remington and the Bushmaster AR-15 is really all about.
What the gun industry has been hiding for years is the idea that a gun specifically designed and used by the military in combat situations doesn’t represent a danger to society when placed in civilian hands.
If you think the AR-15 manufactured by Remington didn’t represent a danger when it was shot more than 150 times in less than three minutes and killed 26 adults and children who happened to be sitting in a public school, then I suggest you open up your dictionary and see what the word ‘danger’ really means.
Yesterday, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which happens to be located in the same town where the slaughter at Sandy Hook took place, had the balls to announce that Remington would have been found innocent if the case had gone to trial in open court. They can’t be that dumb. No — not that dumb.
What yesterday’s agreement really represents is the possibility that gun makers who sell weapons of war as ‘sporting’ guns may find themselves facing similar lawsuits in other states which hold sellers liable when they sell a product which they know is too dangerous to be sold or owned. I mean, how difficult would it be to find a couple of families in any state who have lost loved ones to gun violence and initiate a lawsuit against Sig or Glock?
Actually, the guns currently manufactured by companies like Sig are being used exactly the way they were designed to be used. Ditto the companies which manufacture assault rifles like the AR-15 that was used at Sandy Hook.
The truth is that every gun which shoots real ammunition can be used to end a human life. But that’s like saying that every car rolling down the highway can be used to smash into another car and end lives in both cars.
But cars are made to get the driver and/or the passengers from here to there. And many guns are designed to put some venison stew on the dinner table or knock a bird out of a tree.
What the Sandy Hook versus Remington case may mean is that the gun industry should consider getting out of the business of making products which punch holes in human beings rather than holes in paper targets hanging downrange.