I find this mildly amusing:
Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) is the chief co-sponsor, with Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), of the High Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act, which would ban the sale or transfer of magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds. Upon reintroducing the bill in January, she said banning what she calls “assault magazines” would “go a long way toward making our country safe.” If DeGette seems overly optimistic about the potential impact of her legislation, especially given the fact that many millions of “high-capacity ammunition feeding devices” would remain in circulation, perhaps that’s because she does not realize magazines are reusable. At a Denver Post forum on gun control yesterday, DeGette explained why she thinks her bill would be effective:
What’s the efficacy of banning these magazine clips? I will tell you these are ammunition, they’re bullets, so the people who have those now, they’re going to shoot them. And so if you ban them in the future, the number of these high-capacity magazines is going to decrease dramatically over time because the bullets will have been shot and there won’t be any more available.
Representative Degette doesn’t seem to understand that magazines can be … reloaded. With new bullets. In fact, I reloaded the 15-shot clip for my Baretta twice while writing this post.
I post this not just to poke fun at Degette’s ignorance but to illustrate the magical thinking behind much of the gun control agenda. The gun control advocates are convinced that their laws will make us safer by virtue of their nobel intentions. They are what Maggie McNeill calls “lawheads”: people who think they can change reality simply by passing a law. It is possible to get guns out of the hands of Americans but it would involve laws that are politically and Constitutionally impossible — seizing people’s guns, shuttering gun makers and banning sales (and, of course, that would mostly take guns away from the law-abiding).
In light of the political reality, they are reduced to laws that will inconvenience, annoy and infringe upon the rights of millions of law-abiding people while doing nothing to make us safe. The only real benefit is the feeling that they are “doing something”. And they are desperate to rationalize these feel-good do-little bother-everyone laws in the face of counterfactuals.
It’s not that Degette is stupid; it’s that she’s just so desperate to find a way to argue that this law will make us all safer. And in her desperation, she grasped at an argument that was pure nonsense instead of the usual mostly nonsense.