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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

My local newspaper reported today on page A4 that California Governor, Arnold Schwartzenegger, signed into law a bill which makes it illegal to manufacture, sell, distribute, or import a .50 caliber BMG, a single shot weapon widely used by law enforcement officers and the military, as well as civilian sport shooters.

Why? What was the basis for the law?

Gun advocates say it is a military firearm that could easily fall into the hands of a terrorist.

Yep, a California law will stop that. What terrorist would risk being prsecuted in an OJ court for a misdemeanor? :grumble:

I hope to see the NRA challenge this law. Its lead attorney, Stephen Halbrook, argued in articles that the 2nd Amendment was intended to provide citizens with military style small arms.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
California is first state to ban .50-caliber long-range rifle

SAN FRANCISCO - California has become the first state to ban a powerful .50-caliber long-range rifle that gun-control advocates say is a military firearm that could easily fall into the hands of terrorists.

Under the ban, which was signed into law by Gov. Arnold Schwarz-e-negger in September and took effect Jan. 1, it is now illegal to manufacture, sell, distribute or import a wea-pon known as the .50-caliber BMG, a single-shot weapon widely used by law-enforcement officers and the mi--litary as well as civilian sport shooters.

The law limits possession to those who already own the rifle; they have until April 30, 2006, to register it or face a misdemeanor charge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
A citizen cannot possess .50 BMG in California. If he does nothing but keep it in his gun safe, he will become a criminal. Does that make sense?

We're told that sodomy laws are unconstitutional, because people have a right to privacy in their own homes. I guess that doesn't mean their gun safes, though.

I could understand punishment for using a .50 BMG in commission of a crime, but merely possessing it? I guess gun manufacturers won't be making, selling, or importing firearms in the Slide into the Ocean State? It is a stupid, senseless law, which accomplishes nothing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
My Letter to the Editor

Here's a Letter to the Editor I sent to the LA Times:

.50 Caliber Rifle Ban Is Laughable

So, Governor Schwartzenegger signed a bill outlawing possession, import,
or sale of single shot .50 caliber BMG rifles? Don't Californians realize
how legislation like that makes them a laughing stock? Think about
it.

What was the reasoning behind the bill? Gun control advocates said they
feared terrorist would get one? Yeah, we can all rest assured that a
California law will stop that. What terrorist would risk being prosecuted
in an OJ court for a misdemeanor?

This ridiculous law makes mere possession of a .50 caliber rifle illegal.
It doesn't make its use in commission of a crime a felony, nor require a
mandatory prison sentence for its wrongful use. A law abiding citizen
could be prosecuted for simply having a particular style rifle in his gun
safe.

How silly.

Sincerely,

K Clay Dawson, JD
 

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So what's a good 50 cal to own? I have been interested in the grizzly for a couple of years now.
 

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I hope the California law isn?t as bad as the one they want to pass here in Illinois. As proposed the law banned any type of firearm with a bore of .5 inch or larger, this includes black powder and shotguns. Remember this is the same State that is about to prosecute its last Governor for corruption while in office and is still being lorded over by his Democratic friends. I?m still thinking of moving to Nevada.
 

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Gosh Oldgunner, I hadn't heard that one. That's what really worries me. Kali is just the first. Other states will try to imitate and use them for an example. Most of WV's politicians don't know butts from a hole in the ground and always copy from someone else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Why stop at .50?

Oldgunner said:
I hope the California law isn?t as bad as the one they want to pass here in Illinois. As proposed the law banned any type of firearm with a bore of .5 inch or larger, this includes black powder and shotguns.
Good grief! Why couldn't they outlaw firearms with a bore of .45, or .30 inch?

The whole notion is ludicrous. It seems to be the new method of gungrabbers to outlaw firearms.

Can anyone tell me the bore of the Pennsylvania rifle used in the revolutionary war?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
2005 brings new laws into being
Jeff Ackerman, [email protected]


Attention holiday shoppers. Friday is the last day to purchase your very own 50-caliber BMG rifle. On New Year's Day, it will be illegal to buy one in California.

Who would want a 50-caliber BMG rifle, you ask? Apparently enough people to force state lawmakers to ban them. It's one of a number of new state laws that take effect at the stroke of midnight New Year's Eve.

Lawmakers determined that a 50-caliber rifle does not belong in the hands of people like me, and I can't say I disagree. I don't recall ever needing to shoot someone or something from a mile away, which is what a 50-caliber BMG is capable of doing. Even with my glasses on I can't see more than a half a block anyway. Besides ... I never shoot until I can see the whites of their eyes.

It is a concern, however, that there are enough 50-caliber rifle owners already among us to get the entire state Legislature and governor up in arms. After all, our governor isn't some girly man. He's the Terminator, for crying out loud. He can carry two 50-caliber rifles in one arm and bench press 300 pounds with the other. I saw him do that in "Conan the Barbarian," or maybe it was "Twins," I'm not sure.

According to the manual, the 50-caliber BMG (I'm pretty sure it stands for Big Mother Gun) can penetrate a concrete shelter from a mile away, which must really bum out those deer that spent the whole summer building a concrete hideout. The 50-caliber BMG owner advocates argue that they need a big rifle like that to shoot big game without ever leaving the comfort of the campfire.

"What's that out there on the horizon?"

BLAM!

"Got another beer?"

And if the deer try to drive away in a Hummer, the 50-caliber rifle can even penetrate an armored vehicle, according to the owner's manual.

So it's kind of good that our state government is putting a lid on Big Mother Guns, although I doubt that our law-breaking citizens (you know who you are) will really care what the Legislature thinks. We'll probably have to take the illegal rifles from their "cold, dead hands," as Charlton Heston was fond of saying. And we'll do that right after we pop them from a mile off right through the armored walls of their bunkers.

In addition to the 50-caliber ban, state laws taking effect on the first day of the New Year will:

? Make it illegal for a school bus driver to use a cell phone while driving our children to and from school. That one makes sense, although I think any bus driver ought to be able to call his therapist any time of the day or night. You try driving those kids to school and see if you don't need a therapist.

? Make it illegal to declaw any wild or exotic cat. Can't say that I disagree with that one, either. If you catch a wild or exotic cat, you ought to have to live with the consequences of that decision.

? Make hot air balloon owners accountable to local governments and no longer to the Public Utilities Commission. That one baffles me. I can only guess that ballooners came under the jurisdiction of the PUC because so many of them were slamming into power lines. Either that or they simply got filed in the wrong government drawer.

? Make it illegal for a physician convicted of a sex crime to practice medicine. It's about time they tackled that problem. It's good to know that the guy who's asking you to turn around and cough isn't some pervert. "Hey, doc. How come you want me to turn around and cough when I came in here for an ear infection?"

? Require polling place workers to be trained to ensure all eligible voters who arrive at a polling place before closing time are allowed to vote. I know what you're thinking ... too late.

"I'm here to vote for Kerry."

"Sorry, we're closed."

"But it's only 6."

"Hey, look. Nobody told me what time to close, so I'm closing. Beat it."

Can someone tell me why we don't have one federal law with respect to elections? Why should the rules be different from state to state? Are voters in Iowa any different from voters in California? OK ... never mind.

? Prohibit computer manufacturers from installing software that can be used to take control of your computer starting Jan. 1. That's downright scary. I can imagine sitting there checking out my online Fantasy Football team one night when Bill Gates suddenly pops up with my credit card and starts charging me for 1,000 copies of Windows 98.

"Hey, Bill!" I'll shout. "Get out of my computer right this instant!"

"It's not your computer, Ackerman. And if you don't shut up, I'll activate that chip we put inside your stupid brain pan."

? Allow a member of the military who is serving in conflict overseas to marry by having a proxy stand in as the bride or groom. I can only assume the current law requires the groom or bride to actually show up for the wedding.
 

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Illinois wants to ban all weapons with a bore of .50 or larger?

Very weird. Yeah, bad news for shotgunners and black-powder enthusiasts.

Athough there's already a Federal law (1968 GCA?) that prohibits cartridge firearms other than shotguns with a bore larger than .50. I think it defines them as a "destructive device". Probably something written into the law to allow for folks who have .600 Nitro Express doubles to not have to register their rifles as a destructive device. I think the 1968 GCA also put a 10-gauge limit on shotguns, but I'm a bit unclear on that.

Alas, point being that there is precendent for regulating/prohibiting firearms based upon bore size.
 

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Dzerzhinsky said:
Alas, point being that there is precendent for regulating/prohibiting firearms based upon bore size.
That's what I was worried about.:help:
 

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DADDY WARBUCKS
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Conventional US Constitutional law allows the states to do any gun regulating or banning they want assuming it is allowed under the particular state's constitution.

Gun owners are going to need a judicial activist to eliminate these states' rights.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
What would the Minutemen have used?


Had Arnold been Governor of Massachusetts in 1776,
the Minutemen would have fought with bow and arrow.

___________________________________________________


Good thing those laws weren't in effect when our Founding fathers were fighting for the country's life against the British. The Brown Bess used by British and some Continentals fired a .69 caliber ball. The French musket supplied to Americans (the Charleyville) fired a .65 caliber ball.

Typically, the Pennsylvania fired a .45 caliber rifle ball, but I believe some were chambered for larger rounds.

Doesn't anyone find it odd that the .50 BMG round (Browning Machine Gun) is touted as excessively dangerous by the same people who swore Kerry had to dispatch a VC wounded by one fired from just 20 yards away?
 

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DADDY WARBUCKS
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Clay, I am past the point of expecting anything from the left to make sense.
 

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Custer said:
Conventional US Constitutional law allows the states to do any gun regulating or banning they want assuming it is allowed under the particular state's constitution.

Gun owners are going to need a judicial activist to eliminate these states' rights.
Although with the Justice Department adopting a policy that the Second Amendment protects an individual right - not the right to have a state National Guard - there's a miniscule chance that the Justice Department may try to have the law overturned just as they have tried to have Oregon's assisted suicide law trashed. And if they succeeded in doing that, precedent would be set for invalidation of state laws that are in conflict with the right to keep and bear arms as an individual right.

Hey, we can dream, can't we?
 

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DADDY WARBUCKS
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They wrote that it is an individual right protected by the 2nd Amendment from Federal intrusion.

No one has ever ruled or suggested that the 2nd should apply to the states.

So, Dizzy, you have to decide do you want states' rights for pot or trample states' rights for firearms?
 

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Custer, under that doctrine of interpretation of the 14th Amendment the name of which I keep forgetting, wouldn't protection of the 2nd Amendment from Federal infringement immediately mean that the states couldn't do it, either? Forget the name of the doctrine, same one that means that since the 5th Amendment prohibits the Feds from requiring you to testify against yourself that the states can't do it either.

Your question of whether I would prefer to preserve states' rights on pot (by not allowing Federal laws prohibiting pot to over-ride state laws allowing its medicinal use) or trample states' rights on firearms (by the 14th Amendment doctrine I yatter on about above, which would eliminate a state's right to adopt draconian firearms laws) is an especially good one. My choice, actually, would be that the conflict with regard to the former simply be eliminated by the Feds adopting laws that allow for medicinal use of pot if authorized by state law.

The way you phrased the question reminded me of a military anecdote I read last night in a book on the Korean War: The British and American officers are comparing tactics, an American officer points to a hill on the map and says that he would have at least 200 artillery rounds fired into it before ordering his troops to take the hill. The British officer replied that he'd have his troops walk around the hill.
 

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DADDY WARBUCKS
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Incorporation is what you are thinking of.

Well, we could walk around the hill if we did not have 50 years of reinterpreting the Con and BOR without ever having an amendment.

So, I think they will keep lobbing shells and will continue to have collateral damage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I emailed Jeff Ackerman, who authored the column posted above. he sent me the following reply:

In the end...how many civil liberties are we prepared to sacrifice in the name of fighting terrorism?

It's getting rather scary.

Best,

Jeff
 
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