This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, March 9, 2015:
When the 114th Congress was sworn in in January, each member of the House took this oath:
I, (name of Member), do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
By failing to sign Rep. Bob Goodlatte’s letter to the chairman of the ATF, could one assume that a member of the House is violating his oath of office? After all, the Bill of Rights is part of the Constitution, and the Second Amendment is part of the Bill of Rights. And the ATF is deliberately and blatantly issuing a ban that would trample the Second Amendment.
Even after hearing from constituents and from the National Rifle Association, Goodlatte could only persuade 237 members to sign a letter to the chairman of the ATF protesting his agency’s overreach. Perhaps his letter was too weak:
The proposed ban will … inhibit the development and use of rifle ammunition … that could result in drastically reducing options for lawful ammunition users.
Or how about this?
[Your proposed ban] should be construed in accordance with the American tradition of lawful firearms ownership, as protected by the Second Amendment.
[Your] term “primarily intended to be used for sporting purposes” should be broadly understood to incorporate the many legitimate uses Americans make of their firearms including target practice, hunting, organized and casual competition, training and skills development, and instructional activities.
Nowhere in Goodlatte’s letter is there any mention of the attempt by the Obama administration to continue its invasion of precious rights. Nothing was said about the right of Americans to defend themselves, against enemies “foreign and domestic.” Goodlatte’s letter, taken in its entirety, is not a challenge but an obsequious kowtowing to a vicious agency determined to remove firearms from American citizens: Please, kind sir, don’t take away our bullets, for we want to use them for hunting and shooting at targets. We mean no harm. Please, kind sir, etc., etc.
Goodlatte ends his letter:
Thank you for your prompt attention to this request. If you have any questions, please [call].
When the 114th Congress was sworn in in January, it was the first time since 1929 when the Republican Party had such an overwhelming majority in both houses. If Goodlatte’s letter is any indication, however, that party will fail miserably to seize the opportunity to begin to roll back the dictatorship Obama’s hopes to complete by the end of his second term.
The ATF’s proposed ban on M855-type AR-15 “green tip” ammunition is simply an extension of Obama’s determined effort to change the country into another satrapy of the United Nations before his term ends in 2017.
It’s all for our own good, don’t you know? After all, White House mouthpiece Josh Earnest says so:
[The president] has long believed that there are some common-sense steps that we can take….
This seems to be an area where everyone should agree that if there are armor-piercing bullets available that can fit into easily-concealed weapons, that puts our law enforcement [officers] at considerably more risk….
Earnest got one thing right: Obama’s “beliefs” have little to do with logic or history or experience or support from those law-enforcement officers the ATF’s measure is allegedly supposed to protect. It’s a belief, an ideology, with consequently little support coming from those involved in or closely related to law enforcement.
When asked if any law enforcement officers had been killed or even wounded by the M855 round fired from a handgun, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Sheriff David Clarke, responded:
Not in my jurisdiction. We’re doing a search nationwide, but so far we haven’t found anything.
Clarke, it will be remembered, ran a series of radio ads in early 2013 recommending that citizens of his city arm themselves in order to protect themselves from criminals.
To his credit, Clarke sees what’s really going on, even if Goodlatte and his supporters don’t:
I’m disgusted that this administration would use the safety and well-being of our nation’s law enforcement officers to accomplish their gun-control agenda by circumventing the Congress and … the Constitution in rewriting this law … that’s all this is.
They don’t fool me. No fraternal order of police, no sheriff is going to fall for this.
Clarke, thankfully, isn’t alone. Sgt. Dana Pierce of the Cobb County (Georgia) Police Department said he’s never heard of any officer being shot at, much less threatened by, a criminal wielding an AT-15 handgun.
Earnest isn’t the only one spouting untruths in justifying the pending ban. Marjorie Clifton, a former Obama campaigner, told a big one on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” when she claimed that the ammunition under attack by the ATF “has been used in every mass shooting we’ve had in this country….” Spokesmen for the National Rifle Association (NRA) called the statement “absolutely untrue,” that “most of these incidents haven’t involved firearms even capable of using that round.”
One laughable lie is that pistols chambered for the round are concealable, and therefore represent some kind of threat to LEOs. In reality, an AR-15 pistol is not only very expensive – prices run into the high hundreds and low thousands of dollars – making them very unattractive for the average street thug, but they weigh six pounds or more and are 24 inches long, on average. That’s two feet, hardly the sort of weapon one would slide into an inside-the-waistband holster.
Another fact that doesn’t matter to Obama and his ATF enablers: for 38 years the FBI has been reporting the caliber of weapons used where law enforcement officers have been killed. Not a single LEO has been killed by an M855 cartridge fired from a handgun. In fact, none has been killed with a .223 caliber handgun at all, according to the agency.
The real danger has nothing whatever to do with “armor-piercing” rounds, but with the creation of powers in the present proposal which, if allowed to become “law,” will give de facto authority to the ATF to ban all ammunition.
First of all, any projectile traveling at 3,000+ fps is certainly going to defeat any body armor an officer might be wearing. That’s why the ATF never defines the term that way. Instead, it defines “armor-piercing” rounds as those made of certain kinds of materials: tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze or beryllium copper. Following the closing of the public comment period on Monday, March 16th, the ATF will then make its proposal law.
There is resistance building, but it’s going to have to go some to derail the ATF from its intentions. Alan Gottlieb, head of the Second Amendment Foundation (membership: 650,000), has alerted his members to the threat, as has the NRA (membership: 5 million+). David Workman, senior editor at TheGunMag.com (affiliated with the SAF), is doing his best to expose the lies emanating from the White House:
I cover this every day and I’ve never heard of a police officer being shot with one of these [AR-15] handguns … That’s a crock. I know of absolutely zero incidents of the shooting, wounding, or fatally wounding of a cop with one of these handguns that is chambered for the .223-caliber round, or even someone using the AR-15 rifle, for that matter.
But if the weak-kneed response from Goodlatte and his “supporters” is any indication, shortly after the ATF has heard from everybody, they’ll announce thereafter the new ban, taking another step forward into the brave new world promised by Obama back in 2008:
I will ask you to join me in the work of remaking this nation … block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand….
As long as those calloused hands don’t have access to weapons that might be used to thwart his grand remaking.
The New American: ATF Bans Popular Rifle Ammunition It Says Is “Armor-Piercing”
CBS News: Obama’s mandate for change circa 2008