Hot Air readers will recall the first time enviros decided to try this back door on gun control in August 2010, as Democrats approached a disastrous midterm. After getting petitioned to overrule law and declare itself a regulating agency on hunting, the EPA opened a comment period on the petition that would have ended two days before voters went to the polls. Within 72 hours, the EPA withdrew the petition, stating that it agreed with the NRA and the firearms industry that it “does not have the legal authority to regulate this type of product under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA),” and that they weren’t interested in seeking that authority, either.
Over at NYT “Green” blog:
Zeroing In on Lead in Hunters’ Bullets
Citing risks to birds and to human health, roughly 100 environmental groups formally asked the federal Environmental Protection Agency this week to ban or at least impose limits on lead in the manufacturing of bullets and shotgun pellets for hunting or recreation.
The use of such ammo by hunters puts about 3,000 pounds of lead into the environment annually and causes the death of 20 million birds each year from lead poisoning, said Jeff Miller, a conservation advocate at one of the groups, the Center for Biological Diversity. Consumption of meat from animals that are shot with lead bullets also contributes unacceptable levels of the metal into people’s diets, Mr. Miller said in a phone interview.
He goes on to whine about species that nature has decided are unfit to live and that are only kept alive by government welfare. Same argument, different day.
One of the species most at risk from lead is the endangered California condor, a scavenger that may ingest lead while eating the remains of animals shot with lead bullets, federal and state wildlife and park officials say. The lead pellets within shotgun shells also closely resemble “grit,” pebbles consumed by many species of birds that are necessary for digestion.
Animals that are shot are typically retrieved by the hunter. That’s the point. The “unacceptable levels” in people’s diets are limited because people don’t eat the bullet. Apparently environmentalists don’t know how to clean their kills, nor do they know that if you bite down on something that might chip a tooth, you spit it out.
Lead shot in waterfowl areas has been banned for decades (as the story notes), due to there being concentrated amounts around waterways. In general, duck and goose hunting is done in the same places, the same waterways, in a concentrated habitat. Pheasants, doves, grouse, prairie chickens, etc., are found all over. Banning the use of lead everywhere, where it isn’t concentrated enough to matter, is simply a backdoor way to bump prices up and increase the cost to the citizen. The higher the cost, the less accessible the shooting sports are, the less exercised the 2nd Amendment is, and gradually it goes away.
Used-to-be-funny Chris Rock had a bit years ago where he said banning guns wouldn’t solve anything. He said the government should just tax ammuntion to the point it’s inaccessable. The joke was if you have to spend $1000 on a bullet, you won’t do a drive by – you’ll only shoot the guy you’re going after. Cue laughter from the 90s.
“The use of lead bullets and shot causes the unintended poisoning of all kinds of birds,” Mr. Miller said. “Since there are good alternatives that are coming down in price, there’s no reason not to switch to nontoxic gear.”
Dead wrong. The NSSF spokesman contacted afterwards notes that statement is BS, but I’ll make this one simple.
Here’s some typical cheap plinking, target-shooting or varmint blasting ammo: A box of 20 rounds of Herter’s 55-grain hollow-point is about $6.
If your rifle just doesn’t like steel cased, or you just like brass-cased ammo to reload, whatever the case may be, a box of 20 rounds of 50-grain jacketed hollow-point Remington-made ammo is about $12.
Now, if you want the “good alternative coming down in price” according to anti-gun watermelon-environmentalist Miller, is Federal TNT Green nontoxic 43 grain ammo… that’s $28 per box.
Let’s put that another way. With the AR-15, America’s homeland security rifle, a single magazine (in free states) will typically be 30 rounds. So to go through a carbine stage of fire at a competition where you might go through a full magazine, or to practice failure-to-stop drills, or to just plink at a steel gong or cans, or ridding you ranch of varmints now means you’d be loading up the following:
For those who shoot on a semi-regular basis, you know this is absurd. If you go through 100 rounds at the range and make one trip per month, that’s a pretty modest (in shooter circles) 1200 rounds per year. If all you shoot is cheap steel-cased ammo, you’ll burn through about $360 annually. If you like brass cases, maybe you want to get into reloading, or you just have a rifle that doesn’t like steel (often due to chamber tolerances, etc.), you’re looking at about $720 per year. That’s a fair chunk of change, but if it’s your hobby and you enjoy it, it’s probably already budgeted.
Now if the EPA were to go and impose on you that you have to buy EPA green clean approved eco-friendly ammo, that same 1200 rounds per year will run you $1680. That’s crazy. For the same price you could be shooting 2800 rounds of quality brass ammo, or 5600 rounds of cheap ammo.
Or let’s go back to one range trip, or one competition shoot, or one day of plinking at the ranch/farm where you go through let’s say 200 rounds of ammo. With the cheap steel cased ammo, that’s $60 worth for one day of fun shooting. With quality brass ammo, you’re looking at $120 for a day worth of shooting. Given that your precision is probably better, and the ammo more consistent, it’s probably worth it to you. Now if we go to the green Condor-loving ammo, you’re looking at $280 for one day’s worth of shooting.
Let’s say you only go through four magazines:
It’s very easy to see how quickly prices climb, and how this is used as a barrier to entry in shooting sports, hunting, or even exercising one’s 2A rights. It’s all part of the left’s “choice architecture” to “nudge” you out of the shooting sports and away from firearms.
For those Zumbos who don’t use 30-round magazines, or who only shoot 20 rounds a year and who don’t think the left will come after your bird gun or your deer gun – you’re next. Your bird gun spreads toxins everywhere (steel will be toxic soon enough – keep in mind CO2 already is) and your deer gun is a high-powered sniper rifle that shouldn’t be in the hands of the peasantry to begin with, but also promotes destruction of the land by putting you out in the woods with your ATV. And killing animals to begin with is barbaric and you’re a racist redneck hick inbred toothless racist. And animals have rights and should be able to sue you, after all.
Remember how the left thinks.