I had intended to kick off with a piece that gave a better introduction of myself and my reasons for beginning to keep this blog. However, this question has been repeated over and over by certain members of the federal government and media recently, and as such I have endeavored to address it while the issue was still being discussed. Before I begin I should note that this whole discussion has been hijacked by deliberately deceitful vocabulary. In modern sporting rifles, such as AR 15’s, AK variants, etc; 30 round magazines are universally standard, they are the most common size in the market today. They are not “high capacity”. Regardless, there have been numerous calls for limiting magazine capacity to 10 or even 7 rounds; and I fully intend to address this nonsensical suggestion.
In making this claim, most arguments suggest that the lawful possession of hunting weapons is fine; but that a 30 round magazine has no reasonable place in the hunting community. This myth largely comes from the disconnect between non-hunters and real environmental issues that face our nation. Those not familiar with current trends in hunting, or in the recent changes in our nations wild lands, assume that most hunters are pursuing deer, various types of fowl, or small game. Unfortunately, we as a nation are facing an uphill battle against some vary populous invasive species including hogs and coyotes. Along with other similar creatures these varmint species pose a significant environmental threat to the ecosystems that they invade. Hunters have stood for quite some time as the first line of defense agains the destruction these invaders can wreak. For an example look at Texas where the state government has place bounties on hog carcasses.
Unlike common game, however, varmint game tend to run in larger packs, the goal is to dispatch as many animals as possible, and there is often a whole lot of movement. In addition, many of these pests, hogs in particular, can pose significant danger to the hunter if the first shot isn’t fatal. These factors combine together to require an effective semiautomatic platform with the capacity for repeated, quick follow-up shots. As a consequence of these requirements AR 15’s, AK variants, and SKS’s have become vary popular with anyone involved in this very popular type of hunting. So whether or not they want to admit it, any legislator or media figure pushing for magazine restrictions is attacking hunters.
Live Stock Protection
The second value for standard magazines, like the first, is easily missed due to many American’s disconnect from the realities faced in America’s countryside today. As a result of the above mentioned coyote problem, as well as an increasing problem with feral dogs, which are strays that have been released, often in rural areas, and gone wild; many farms both large and small face constant attacks on their livestock from dog packs. These animals are dangerous, vicious, and in most cases have lost all fear of man. Unlike some predators, they are rarely frightened off by the first shot, and many of them must often be killed in order to protect the flocks and herds that feed America.
Consider the requirements of such a situation: these attacks typically occur at night and every second can mean the difference between the life or death of valuable livestock, mobility will be a must as the dogs will likely be running the cattle pretty fast, multiple predators will have to be dispatched with each one likely being fired on several times before a well placed shot can be placed, running out of ammunition could mean the difference between the death of valuable livestock or possibly their guardian. What this means is that in all likelihood the farmer or rancher responding will have to arise in the middle of the night and pick up a single rifle or shotgun ready for the task. This weapon will need to be fired several times in a very short period of time without being reloaded, as carrying spare magazines will overly encumber the shooter and may not have been thought of in advance. All of these factors together call for the use of modern sporting rifle with a standard capacity magazine of 30 or 40 rounds. Spend some time in the rural parts of this country if you don’t believe me; you’ll hear frequent AR or AK fire most anytime you hear dogs barking while they attack cattle. I’m not trying to imply that all farmers and ranchers use AR’s or AK’s on a constant basis, but many do and this is certainly an important task these weapons fill admirably.
It has been continuously, and I would add naively, asserted that more than 7 or 10 rounds are completely unnecessary for a self-defense situation and that limiting magazine size will significantly deter mass shootings. To be honest, this is not only false, it is the opposite of the truth. Larger magazines primarily affect defensive shooters not aggressors.
This is true for 2 primary reasons:
1.Most people do not anticipate being attacked, whether it is a concealed handgun or a bed side rifle or shot gun, the average person defending them self will likely have only one gun and one magazine. As such it is necessary to have enough rounds to end the encounter without reloading. In a perfect world perhaps the greatest threat one might have to face would be 3 attackers and each one could be stopped with a single shot, or better yet maybe the presentation of the weapon alone would frighten them off. The world, in contrast, is not perfect; sometimes it takes more than one shot to end an attack. Especially where concealed carry type handguns are involved in altercations with attackers who are on drugs repeated shots are necessary before the would be victim can extricate them self. It is also not outside of the realm of possibility to be attacked by more than the expected 2 or 3 attackers. Just consider that, however unlikely you may think they are, gang violence and riots due from time to time occur. In such cases even a large magazine might be emptied just in withdrawing from the danger zone.
Contrast this to an active shooter situation. In these cases the shooter has spent a substantial amount of time preparing his attack, bringing along as many weapons and as much ammunition as might be needed, sometimes explosives are even prepared. Such shooters are not limited to one magazine and as such limiting magazine capacity does not affect the number of shots they are able to take during an attack.
2. While magazine changes are quick and easy, they are much less quick and easy if you are already being shot at or attacked. For self-defense, running out of ammo at a critical moment could result in death, even if a spare magazine is readily at hand. For this reason, the more capacity the one forced to depend himself has the better.
Once again, the active shooter has prepared for this possibility. For one thing he is firing at almost entirely at defenseless victims. These victims have only the most limited ability to strike back and he is largely in control of the situation from start to finish, this gives him the ability to reload when he pleases with little threat. It is also very common to carry multiple weapons, in fact this has been the case in every mass shooting I can think of. This allows the shooter to alternate between weapons when it is inconvenient to reload a particular weapon.
These reasons contribute to 2 very well established facts:
Those concerned about defending themselves generally use the largest magazines they can reasonably manage to carry.
Active shooter situations are rarely stopped during time periods when the shooter was reloading.
Concluding this argument
I realize that I could also discuss the issue of civil defense in addressing reasons why law abiding citizens might need to be in possession of modern sporting rifles and standard capacity magazines, but I think these arguments are sufficient to answer the question adequately. For space sake, the civil defense argument will have to wait for another time, what’s more that argument has been articulated fairly well by others.
The problem for those arguing in favor of restricting magazine capacity is ultimately that they have chosen to be willfully ignorant. They are ignoring the fact that magazine capacity has rarely affected the lethality of a mass shooting, just look at the Austin clock tower shooting or Columbine if you don’t believe me; and also that active shooters are rarely stopped until another person with a gun, whether law enforcement or armed citizen, comes on the scene. After reading this, anyone arguing against capacity over 7 or 10 rounds will also have to intentionally ignore all of the many lawful situations that call for the use of a 30 or 40 round magazine.
The final issue I would like to address is the importance of this issue for anyone who loves liberty. After recent Supreme Court rulings, the totalitarians in our government (both Republican and Democrat) have come to realize that any form of gun confiscation is unlikely to succeed. Instead they are trying to circumvent the Constitution by attacking magazines, thus making firearms less effective. If this attack succeeds, expect to see restrictions on ammunition, particularly which calibers civilian shooters will be allowed access to, next (New York has already taken steps in this direction).
Take this Argument and Run With It
In order to win this fight, all patriots need to take an active role to ensure that their legislators don’t pass “compromise” legislation that attacks magazine capacity while not actually banning any guns. Please right your legislators and tell them that such a compromise is unacceptable and will be viewed the same way as a ban. Make sure to also engage your local media about the importance of this issue to you, in particular don’t allow them to create the appearance that you have no answer to arguments mandating low capacity magazines.
In this vein, I here by authorize the reproduction of this work for educational purposes provided that it is copied in its entirety and that a link back to this blog is included. Feel free to use this argument to educate your friends, local media, and legislators.
Keep the Faith,