Gun Restrictions Toppling

CS Monitor did a story on how local gun restrictions are taking a beating as of late.  This is the same guy that did the story on guns blogs back in May.  He’s demonstrated a willingness to be fair to gun owners, so I’m willing to attribute one misstatement to ignorance rather than malice:

The two laws in Philadelphia stuck down Thursday were enacted in 2008. One banned assault-style weapons, which are semi-automatic rifles altered to combat specifications. The other restricted an individual’s ability to buy handguns to one a month.

Emphasis mine.  A semi-automatic rifle altered to combat specifications would be illegal to sell to civilians, because Mil-Spec on the rifle requires it to be select fire, which makes it a machine gun by law.  More accurately would be to say “semi-automatic versions of military rifles.”  If you wanted, even using “of military assault rifle” would be accurate, since the M16 and M4s are both true assault rifles.  The rifles sold to civilians don’t meet combat (Mil-Spec) specifications.

But either way, the point gets across, and it’s a good, factual article.  One thing not talked about, and that I wouldn’t have expected to be in an short article like this, is exactly what kinds of firearms Philadelphia was actually banning under the ruse of “assault weapons,” which we covered back when this all happened.

I take to heart what Bitter said a few days ago, about not automatically thinking of the media as the enemy.  I don’t think the gun rights movement has done itself many favors by that attituide.

9 Responses to “Gun Restrictions Toppling”

  1. Crotalus says:

    Some of the media IS blatantly biased. I guess we need to be a little more discerning as to who is biased, and who is willing to learn.

    Do you remember the 1997 Burbank bank robbery and shootout? A gun store lent the police high powered rifles to defeat the crooks’ body armor. The L.A. Times were given two interviews by the gun store, and each time, they spun the article to put the store in a bad light. When the Times asked for another interview, the store told them to take a hike.

  2. DirtCrashr says:

    With this guy you recognize some background and you’re prepared to cut him some slack, that’s valid because of his demonstrated willingness. It’s the other 99% who demonstrate an repeated unwillingness, either by their own hand or the almighty Editorial red-pencil that alters their story…

  3. Bitter says:

    Except we didn’t have that history the first time we talked to him, DirtCrashr. That history had to start somewhere.

  4. The Packetman says:

    I agree with DirtCrashr ………. this gentleman has ‘demonstrated’ his willingness to be fair (as far as we can see with a sample of 2).
    However, I can see some utility in approaching the media as if they were an enemy, until they show that they aren’t. As an example, I was disturbed to hear a local tv reporterette mention that TN (I live in GA) has recently ‘passed a law allowing citizens to pack heat in state parks’. The only fairness I saw was that they interviewed campers representing both sides of the argument.
    I wrote the news director an email expessing my disappointment at the factual errors, and the bias I detected.
    So, did they do it on purpose? Who knows, but ‘citizens’ are not allowed to carry, permit-holders are ….. a subtle but distinct difference.
    So now, after having this pointed out, have they corrected their mistake? Not that I’ve seen. So now, I consider my local news to be antagonistic to my 2nd amendment rights, and I will treat them as such.
    You and Bitter can act however you like with regards to the media …… I would only submit that you’ll likely not get anywhere with them by giving them the benefit of the doubt.


    • Bitter says:

      You can take that attitude all you want, but I’ve had pretty decent success on that front for a number of years now. Even when it’s been less than friendly, I’ve been able to reap rewards from it. You can make lemonade even when you encounter a lemon. And you never know if the reporter you’re dismissing is actually a gunnie when you give him/her attitude.

  5. Mike w. says:

    “Except we didn’t have that history the first time we talked to him, DirtCrashr. That history had to start somewhere.”

    Exactly. You’ll never know if you don’t give them a chance. That doesn’t mean don’t be cautious, but it also means we don’t need to be outright hostile.

  6. Andy says:

    Given your previous encounter and now established (though tenuous) relationship with the CS Monitor reporter, did you take the opportunity here for a gentle correction?

  7. John A says:

    “Then, the US Supreme Court, in a 5-to-4 decision, affirmed the constitutional right of individual Americans to own handguns…”

    Uh, no, it was UNANIMOUS that “own and bear arms” is an individual vs “collective” right. The split was over other things, such as whether the District’s laws/regulations amounted to an effective ban rather than allowable regulation.

  8. Bill says:


    Local paper publishes AP piece that, as usual totally confuses automatic weapons with semi-autos, with local add by local reporter.

    I happened to run on to that reporter that evening at a community event, and tried (very politely) to suggest that her take was a little confused.

    Her reaction was to (literally) scream at me that anyone who tried to defend guns was an animal and not fit to exist.

    I agree that it is counter productive to assume that all the media is hostile, but some of the media is beyond hope.


  1. SayUncle » Round up of civil rights victories - [...] SIH, who notes past interactions with the [...]