Magazine Bans and Why Standard-Capacity Magazines are Important

Posted: December 20, 2012 by ShortTimer in Bill of Rights, Guns, Leftists, Media, Second Amendment, United States Constitution

Much of the current mostly one-sided screaming about gun control has been the fervent desire by those who want more control to ban standard magazines.  They call them “high capacity”, but in reality, a 30-round magazine for an AR-style rifle is standard.  10-rounders are low-capacity.  60 or 100 are either unreliable drums or relatively new quad-stack magazines that haven’t taken hold in the marketplace yet.  There are some making the erroneous argument that guns are for hunting, and not for their actual purpose, which as Dr. Suzanna Hupp rightfully stated “was to protect all of us from all of you guys up there”.

Frank Deford at National Propaganda Radio suggests that since the 2nd Amendment reads: “An adequately equipped hunter, being superfluous to the actual nation, the right of the hunter to keep and bear one single rifle capable of holding not more that 3 rounds shall sometimes be infringed since it’s still a sniper rifle”, it’s time for Eddie Bauer guys with over/under shotguns to start coming together so we can ban everything, cuz there’s no reason to discuss it.

All this is old hat, so there is no sense struggling with what exactly James Madison had in mind about the militia when he and his otherwise succinct brethren were marking up the Bill of Rights. Nor do we need to hear how no laws can stop crazy people from getting guns so what’s the point of gun laws in our nation or laws for everything else? And how guns don’t kill people, and so on and so forth.

We know exactly what Madison had in mind.  We know exactly what they meant, and why they said “no free man shall be disbarred the use of arms”.  The only people struggling with it are those who want more control over society, and they can’t reconcile with the fact that Madison and Jefferson and all the rest were explicitly including the Second Amendment in order to prevent that expansion of government.  Hell, the Founders weren’t even sure we should have a standing army because of the slow encroachment of tyranny.  That’s why the 3rd Amendment is so highly placed – it’s to prevent government crushing the liberty of the citizen.

We also know that the 1st Amendment isn’t limited to quill and ink, and does include fully-automatic assault presses that can process and send thousands of words all across the world at the speed of light.  I thoroughly enjoy using my “high capacity” assault press to reach people every day.

Rather, it’s just obvious that we Americans possess too many firearms — almost 90 per 100 people, far more than anybody else in the whole world. And obviously it’s too easy for us to obtain these automatic weapons of human destruction — this should also be obvious by now — and that nothing will change unless the very people who are gun owners themselves support the changes the president swears to promote. Hunters are good citizens who want guns to shoot game. Nobody can accuse them of supporting the confiscation of guns.

“Obvious”, “too many”, this is defining the argument, as noted a couple days ago, wherein the anti-gun side will not ever listen to any argument to the contrary.  They have chosen their ideology and cannot and willfully do not allow themselves to even listen to the other side.  In just this blog here, in the last couple days (and many times before), I’ve gone over explicity why an anti-gun position is also an anti-freedom position, and sets a nation up for future problems.

Hunters do want guns confiscated.  Jim Zumbo was famous for it, calling the AR-15 a “terrorist rifle”, even when it’s used commonly in the hunting community by varmint, pig, and even deer hunters.  His willful ignorance and hatred of a class of firearm driven by the media eventually got him canned.  “Hunters” of this type are what is derisively referred to in the firearms community as “Fudds”.  They don’t care about anything but their wood-stocked rifle or shotgun, they don’t carry pistols, and they don’t understand the 2nd Amendment.  They don’t care if ARs get thrown under the bus, or if pistols get banned, because they make the argument that their rifle is tradition, and therefore okay.  The pro-control anti-gun crowd is more than happy to entertain that delusion while they round up all the black rifles and then the handguns.  And when they get to “sniper rifles”, then Fudd is going to find his deer rifle is the next demonized danger that’s gets called a weapon of mass destruction.

Photo by Oleg Volk.

Photo by Oleg Volk.

The NPR shill goes on:

If the sportsmen would let their voices of conscience be heard above the homicidal fusillade, then some sensible prohibitions could be enacted, for those who have the potential to reduce the gun carnage in the United States of America are precisely the people who own guns and who are good sports.

“Surrender your rights… you don’t shoot that kind of gun… be a ‘good sport’… we’ll like you if you do what we say… it’s unpopular to oppose us… we’re ‘sensible’…”

Unsurprisingly, there are folks who fall for this.  Fudds who’ve never gone hunting with a black rifle, those who haven’t looked at what the Constitution says and why, and those who just generally are intimidated or made afraid of a subset of gun culture that’s not the same as hunting culture might think that this is reasonable.  They see that liberals like the outdoors, too, and the liberals hide their anti-hunting stance long enough to get the hunters on board.

Well, hunters, Fudds (and I say that jokingly, not derisively now), we must all hang together… or we will most assuredly all hang seperately.

oleg volk sniper gun ban

Clayton Cramer over at makes the case for standard capacity (what the media calls “high capacity deathkillbabymurderingmurdergunclipmagazineclips”):

How much actual “advantage” does a high-capacity magazine give to a monster who is shooting unarmed people? Practically none. The victims have no idea whether he is about to change magazines and are therefore in no position to flee or engage in a barehand attack (even if one of them has the remarkable coolness of mind to try something that courageously foolhardy). For practical purposes, a mass murderer with ten-round magazines is about as deadly as one with 20-round magazines. I suppose if you were to impose a really low limit, such as two or three rounds, you would start to make a real difference in these horrors, but that brings us to the other side of the equation.

Charles Whitman already did one of the worst mass killings in US history pretty much with hunting rifles.  Cramer concedes something that history doesn’t fully support.

A recurring question that I hear from gun-control advocates is, Why does anyone need high-capacity magazines? The implication is that they have no legitimate function. If they don’t, they should be prohibited to police officers, who carry handguns for self-defense; their job is not to shoot people in summary execution. A police officer’s use of a handgun is not so terribly different from that of a civilian with a gun in his home or, if licensed, on his person. While it is rare for either a police officer or a civilian to need 15 or 20 rounds in a gunfight, it is not unknown, and in some cases it is the difference between life and death for individuals engaged in self-defense.

oleg volk cop with rifle 1

There is one other situation where a high-capacity magazine serves a necessary, even praiseworthy function. During the riots following the Rodney King trial, many shopkeepers in the Korean section of Los Angeles confronted mobs threatening to loot and burn the stores. Some of the shopkeepers used high-capacity magazines in rifles to avoid taking lives. Yes, you read that right. By firing two or three shots over the heads of the rioters, the shopkeepers were able to impress on these criminals that they should keep their distance or risk death. Because they had 30-round magazines in their rifles, they could afford to fire two or three warning shots. Had they been limited to three or five rounds per magazine, they likely would have had the choice of abandoning their stores or making every bullet deadly.


Those who would say they should abandon their stores in order to not take a life speak from a position not only of moral cowardice, but one that enables violence.  If the violent aggressor can take what they want because you accede to belligerent demands, then you have nothing.  You have no possessions, you have not rights, you are a slave to whomever your abuser of the moment is.  In a state of nature (and for all the structure of society, a violent aggressor returns us to the state of nature as hairless, defenseless apes whose only ability is the mind and tools made with our minds) – if you lie down and cringe and surrender, if you abandon your own property, your home, your family and life – then you will be no more.  The ability to defend is non-negotiable.  There may be occasions where retreat is a good option, and many times where nonviolence works, and is admirable.  But when you need the capacity to respond to violence, you need it.

LA-Koreatown-Defender korean LA riots

On a shooting range, it’s really quite easy to keep every shot on the paper. Things are a bit different in a high-stress, poorly illuminated gunfight inside your home, where it is possible that for every three or four shots you fire, only one delivers an incapacitating blow to an attacker. Yes, you can change magazines rapidly with a modern pistol or rifle, but it is better not to have that distraction in the middle of a gunfight.

It is true that where I live now, I don’t worry about intruders or even burglary. I also haven’t had a flat tire in more than 100,000 miles, but I still keep a spare in the trunk: The cost of doing so is low, and the consequences of not being ready for that rare situation are too high. A high-capacity magazine is like that spare tire.

A gun is like a fire extinguisher or a condom.  If you need one because the situation arises, you really need one.  There are specific tools for specific jobs, and specific tools for specific things that happen.

In the real world, a show of force may be all that’s needed.  An armed society truly is a polite society.

AR15_crusader_PA_magpul_4252 oleg volk rifle girl


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