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Why Gun Bans Don't Stop Murderers

Why Gun Bans Don't Stop Murderers

(Firearms News photo)

Confusion by Colorado authorities over how a man who shot and killed 10 people in Boulder supermarket got the 10 30-round magazines he had with him during the atrocious crime shows how out of touch gun-control advocates can truly be.

“Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty told reporters that Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, 22, possessed the magazines that hold more than 15 rounds unlawfully but that investigators don't believe the magazines were purchased illegally,” read a report from Ohio news station WFMJ (

The story continued, “Although the magazines can't be sold, people in the state can still buy the parts for the magazines at some gun stores and assemble them on their own, at which point it is illegal to possess them.”

Here’s what those who want to institute a new ban every time a deranged person shoots others don’t seem to understand. For whatever reason, Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa went to that grocery story with the express purpose of murdering as many people as possible. While he lived and committed his crime in a state that had banned these magazines, he didn’t give a flip about that law. The state also has laws criminalizing assault and murder, but those laws didn’t stop him, either.

There’s some kind of a mental disconnect in thinking that somehow determining how the murderer got the magazines is going to be productive in any way. Criminals do stuff that is illegal—it’s in their nature, and that’s why they are called criminals! What kind of person willing to murder other human beings wouldn’t also be willing to break a law dictating what size of magazines he could own or any other gun law? That’s why such laws only work to infringe on the rights of lawful citizens.

Of course, some in Colorado believe that the murderer being able to get the 30-round magazines—even though there is already a state law against it—proves that such mags should be banned on the federal level. In fact, such magazines were once banned at the federal level.

The Clinton Gun Ban back in the 1990s, which banned many semi-automatic rifles, also banned ownership of magazines holding more than 10 rounds. A government study later showed that the ban had no measurable effect on violent crime.

In fact, ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds are standard equipment for many handguns and rifles designed for defensive purposes. They’re also commonly used in handguns kept for protection at home and carried for protection away from home, and they’re commonly used in defensive skills-based firearm training and sports.

Interestingly, a case dealing with these magazines could soon be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court. On Monday, the National Rifle Association and Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs asked the court to hear the case Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs, Inc., v. Gurbir S. Grewal, a New Jersey magazine ban case. Plaintiffs in that case argue that New Jersey’s ban on ammunition magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds is unconstitutional.

Additionally, gun-ban advocates in Congress have recently introduced legislation to ban magazines at the federal level. On April 14, a group of anti-gun federal lawmakers led by U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Colorado, and U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-New Jersey, introduced legislation to ban the sale, manufacturing, transfer, possession or importation of high-capacity gun magazines that are capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition.

Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for the past 20 years.

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