Make Gun Ammunition Legal, Safe, and Rare

After one of our many gun massacres, I wrote:

Someday, I will live in a country where birth control pills can be bought freely over the counter, and you will have to speak to a medical professional to buy ammunition for high-powered rifles.

So it is with considerable interest that we read the following about firearm policy in the UK:

Vitally, it is also very hard to get hold of ammunition. Just before leaving Britain in the summer, I had lunch with a member of parliament whose constituency is plagued with gang violence and drug gangs. She told me of a shooting, and how it had not led to a death, because the gang had had to make its own bullets, which did not work well, and how this was very common, according to her local police commander. Even hardened criminals willing to pay for a handgun in Britain are often getting only an illegally modified starter’s pistol turned into a single-shot weapon.

Not only should we tax ammunition heavily, we should make it very difficult to acquire, period. It really should be harder to purchase than birth control pills.

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10 Responses to Make Gun Ammunition Legal, Safe, and Rare

  1. Joe Shelby says:

    My take is that extra-capacity clips (or ‘magazines’ if one wants to get legal about it) should be banned (or ‘regulated’) as well.

    Seriously, if you can’t accomplish in 30 rounds what you think it would take you 130 to do, then you shouldn’t be shooting at all because, well, your aim is total shit.

    • Zachary Smith says:

      I’ll take that a bit further – limit magazine sizes to two or three rounds. IMO it would take some really draconian punishment to enforce this because so many of the large ones already exist. There’s no way of getting all of them out of circulation, but the mere possession would mean the associated firearm (if found) would be crushed, there would be a fine of $1,000 or 1% of his net worth (whichever was the larger), and three months in jail. Gun nuts might still keep their oversized magazines, but they’d be kept very much out of sight.

      The US fought WW2 with the M1 Garand and its 8 round clip. To do in the average deer or violent housebreaker, I think 3 rounds would be plenty enough. For those who could demonstrate they needed larger clips, the regulation routine would approximate what it currently takes to possess a legal machine gun or silencer.

  2. Zachary Smith says:

    *** Make Gun Ammunition Legal, Safe, and Rare ***

    IMO this is a worthy goal albeit one which is totally impractical in the US. The barn door has been open way too long, and the stocks of existing ammunition here are simply too large to get back to the “rare” part.

    Black powder in the land mines and torpedoes from the US Civil War is still dangerous material, and is still killing collectors who tinker with it. I’ve no doubt that if a person could locate WW1 rifle rounds which hadn’t been stored in a wet basement or hot attic, most of them would still be deadly.

    From a 2010 forum post:

    “Re: Prepare for Chaos- Storing Your Ammo
    When my uncle died last year my aunt gave me a large supply of ammo that he had loaded. The stash included over 2000 .38’s loaded in 1958!!!! Marked “EMERGENCY:.38..158 grain” They were sealed in 4 layers of wax paper and covered in melted wax……Every one of them fired…not one failed!!! He was a fanatic about reloading but even he would be proud of this. PS: He was my reloading guru….everyone went to him with their reloading questions.”

    Once again: “Every one of them fired”

    The paranoia of the gun nuts has caused them to be hypersensitive to the possibility of ammunition sales being restricted or even stopped. They’ve prepared for this with massive stockpiles as well as preparations to reload, and in some cases to manufacture their own.

    In my view it would take at least three generations before any real shortages would occur for anything besides plinking at the range.

  3. So, because you don’t like guns, you use the pretext of saving lives to conjure up ways to stymie the Constitutional rights of gun owners. Just like Republicans did to make abortion as inconvenient as possible. Great.

    Do you think if you spent a couple minutes more of contemplation, you could come up a constructive idea that would not gratuitously penalize ALL of the 50 million gun owners in the country, virtually all of whom use their firearms completely safely?

    Because otherwise, all you are doing is adding to the hysteria of the liberal media and doing nothing constructive at all EXCEPT helping to elect more batshit insane Republicans. Who will murder in slow motion billions of people and millions of species by actively torpedoing all efforts to address global warming.

    Seriously, if you can’t stop your mental masturbation about assault weapons, please think about the effects of your actions, and then, perhaps, STFU – you are NOT helping the world on issues that affect more than a statistically negligible number of people.

    • DBP says:

      To paraphrase you:

      WAAAAAAHHHHHHHH! The lives of tens of thousands of people who will eventually be killed by firearms are worth less than my right to own a murder toy, you fucking asshole!”

      • Read for comprehension, will you? Any individual’s right to own and use a firearm is now a right protected by the Constitution. Fantasizing about removing that right by legislation does NOTHING constructive except give Karl Rove an orgasm, because he knows that the more the liberal media make an issue over this, the more batshit crazy Republicans are going to get elected.

        Which means nothing will get done about global warming, which means 6 orders of magnitude more people will die from environmental catastrophe than die from maniacs on a shooting rampage every year – which is what Sandy Hook is all about.

        You are cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    • Zachary Smith says:

      “Seriously, if you can’t stop your mental masturbation about assault weapons,”

      Since the term “assault weapons” hadn’t been seen on this page previously, I suspect we’ve flushed somebody who was listening to Rush ‘druggie’ Limpaugh’s incoherent rant yesterday. It involved all sorts of hair-splitting legalisms and definitions about “assault rifles”, and was mostly about assuring the crazies that dozens of dead children didn’t matter as much as those legalisms.

      The alternative to severe restrictions on firearms is banning the things entirely. Unlike what the crazy guys believe, in the modern American Police State this can be done quite efficiently.

      • Easy? That’s ridiculous. Have you not been paying attention? The Supreme Court ruled about a year ago – firearm ownership is a Constitutional right. How is going to be easy to ban firearms?

      • And I haven’t listened to Rush Limbaugh in twenty years. I’m a card-carrying fucking Progressive, you asshole. Sandy Hook engendered the discussion about assault rifles.

        Keep saying stupid shit like “we can ban all firearms easily”, but realize all you are doing is giving Karl Rove a big sloppy blow job for a Christmas present. Thanks a lot, well done.

  4. george.w says:

    Chris Rock: “Bullets should cost five thousand dollars!” http://youtu.be/OuX-nFmL0II

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