Catching CeaseFire in a Lie

Rifle & Scope

Bob Owens notices that CeaseFire PA has jumped quick on attempting to exploit the ambush murder of two Pennsylvania State Troopers by a crazed gunman. They are claiming that murders committed with long guns has doubled since 1996. That number is, of course, a complete fabrication. Bob looks at the actual figures and notes the number of murders with long guns has, in fact, halved. Bob notes:

The attempt to target long-guns comes after numerous media outlets sympathetic to gun control curious chose last week to abandon their 30-year fixation on so-called “assault weapons.”

Apparently, they’re now going to go after bolt-action rifles used for hunting, calling them “sniper rifles,” comparing their owners to “insurrectionists” and”terrorists” as they attempt to push universal background checks as a de facto gun registry.

I don’t think that can be stressed enough. If they get the “background check” bill they want, there will be de facto firearm registration in this country. We already have this for handguns in Pennsylvania, and nationally there is registration for firearms bought at retail through 4473. But the exceptions are important. Because you can buy, sell, and trade firearms privately, when the knock comes, they can’t prove anything. If that knock comes (don’t ever let anyone tell you they aren’t out to take your guns), you don’t want to be in a position where you have to turn it over, or admit to another serious crime.

22 thoughts on “Catching CeaseFire in a Lie”

  1. I just learned how public/private SSH keys work for computers. It got me thinking about how a serial number could be a “private” key while a person’s SSN (or something else) could be the “public” key, and how that might be used as a way to ensure compliance with a future universal background check law without allowing the government to compile a searchable database or registry.

    Surely there must be a way to make something like this work.

    1. When the knock comes, what’s to keep the police from demanding the private keys?

      And confiscating anyfirearm that doesn’t have a private key that encrypts into something in their database?

      1. I don’t know how all of that would work. Somebody much smarter than me would have to work the details out. I would imagine that they couldn’t match your “public” key to any particular firearm unless they were to gain possession of a firearm either through a crime scene or upon finding it through a search. And they wouldn’t be able to place a name to any particular firearm unless that particular name were discovered through an investigation. Public and private keys would fit together but they would have to have both. But I’m certain that universal background checks are in our future, and I’d rather not allow it to be an excuse for registration.

        1. Public key encryption only prevents third parties from eavesdropping, and provides mechanism to authenticate one or both parties are who they claim to be (this is what a Certificate Authority typically does. They essentially vouch for the certificate holder).

          The way you’d handle this kind of thing is through tokenizing. Basically, the FBI would have to make a list of all people who are prohibited persons, and then tokenize their information and upload it to a database. If the tokenizing algorithm is known, and one way, a local checker could tokenize your information and it could cross check it against the token in the database.

          Because these would be generated by one way functions, there’d be no way to extract personal information from the tokens. There are plenty of hashing algorithms that would work.

          Though, this would be unacceptable to the powers that be, because you couldn’t prosecute someone who failed the check unless the dealer were required to record it (which I wouldn’t honestly have a problem with).

          1. Yeah, why should it be illegal to fail a background check anyway? There are plenty of harmless dummies who just don’t know they’re prohibited. How else could one know if they’re on some secret government no-fly list, if that should ever become a reason to make somebody a prohibited person? If you’re a prohibited person, you simply get denied a sale. Why should this result in arrest and conviction in the first place?

              1. I think useless laws are just as harmful as anti-liberty laws. Why bother with background checks? Why prohibit anyone? Prohibition didn’t work with alcohol, doesn’t work with drugs, and certainly doesn’t work with guns.

                These laws can’t stop criminals from getting guns, they only give prosecutors more firepower to use against them if they are ever caught committing a crime again in the future. So just give the prosecutors the firepower without the prohibition – for felons who commit subsequent crimes with firearms, maximum sentence is doubled and mandatory.

                That makes the penalties more harsh without introducing lame duck legislation that stops no criminals and only harms law abiding citizens.

    2. There are ways to do it, but it requires trusting the computers doing the searches to throw data away. At some point the system needs to know who you really are.

      1. I was thinking that it only has to know if the key pairs match. Who you are wouldn’t matter as long as they match.

    3. I don’t ever really trust that the association will be made private, especially not to the state. Therefore we should never really accept UBCs as “inevitable.”

      1. I don’t think they are inevitable, but another Sandy Hook like pretense could change that very quickly. We would quite likely have lost the vote on Manchin-Toomey if that’s all they had come after us with.

        1. Pretense being the operative word.

          Part of me wonders if that was a contributing reason they did kitchen sink in response to SandyHook. As going after only background checks makes as much sense as using the Naval Yard shooting to push for a handgun ban.

          But having background checks, and mag bans, and gun bans, made it so they could claim a “comprehensive deal” and at least mention something that was acutally used.

          Now imagine another event, but one where the mutant actually got his firearms through a private sale.

        2. I think that was the assumption pre-Sandy Hook, so I wonder why you bring it up now. The gun control emperor has no clothes. Sandy Hook showed this and quite well. And The_Jack is entirely right. The next one that happens (and there will be one… have we ever short on crazy people in the world?) will be from guns furnished legally through private sale. What will there response be?

          1. If my memory is right, the odds are quite strong that the next one will be done either by someone with no “on paper” record or someone who killed a family member or friend who owned guns.

            For both cases there’s also good odds that it is someone who had “warning signs” but through family connections or botched investigation was never looked at closely.
            (Again this is a dog that doesn’t bark, as stories of mass homicides that are adverted don’t get nearly as much play).

            The odds are a bit self evident given the frequency the antis will blame private sales when no private sale was involved. (You’d think it it really were a problem they could cite actual examples).

            That being said it ain’t impossible.

            Remember, the moral of “The Boy Who Cried Wolf” isn’t “Wolves don’t exist”.

            1. IIRC, the killers at Columbine got all of their guns through a couple friends who bought them for those two, because they were too young to buy directly.

              1. Selling to the kids was already illegal. Requiring a background check on the private sale would’ve just made it more illegal. The only way to make is work would be a registration so they could go after the guy who sold them for selling without a BC.

  2. I caught some newsreader commenting that the .308 rifle used had “supersonic” ammunition (as if it was something special or unusually dangerous), thus the trooper wouldn’t have heard the shot that killed him.

    While it’s true that .308 is supersonic, that makes it no different than nearly any other centerfire rifle round I know of, and many rimfires as well. It seemed to me like he either 1) had no idea about the inanity of what he was saying, or 2) he was laying the groundwork to seek banning “supersonic” calibers on the theory they are suitable only for snipers or terrorists.

    While it’s entirely possible (if not likely; they’re generally idiots on this sort of thing) for the newsreader in question to not know that most if not all rifle rounds are supersonic, I don’t doubt the second possibility is possible as well.

    Personally,. I hope that they make exactly that push, and make it publicly and loudly. It will wake up a great number of Fudds who were led to believe that the gun banners only wanted the “evil” guns, and their treasured deer rifles were not at risk of legislative proscription. If they thought that, they were wrong. As Joe Huffman puts it – “don’t let anyone ever tell you that they don’t want to take your guns.”

    They do. And they will not stop until they get them all. Then they will want those of us who resist to be placed into “reeducation camps” to rid us of that “backward” thinking.

    No, I don’t think we’re on the verge of trains or camps. But the nuttier of the anti-gun types (the Joan Peterson types, for example), if they had their way, would happily load all of us on trains to camps – or worse. And claim they are doing so “for the children” in the process.

    1. We’ve been saying for years that the gun-ban lobby wants all the guns, and the Fudds didn’t believe it.

      We’ve said that all the gun-ban lobby has to do is categorize a bolt-action precision rifle as a “high-powered sniper weapon” and/or a shotgun as a “streetsweeper”, and people would buy into that image. The Fudds didn’t believe it.

      Now, it’s actually happening.

      Personally, in this instance I take no pleasure in being right. I do, however, expect that any Fudds who value their rights wake up, stop being Fudds, and start being activists.

      No compromises; they’ll just be back for the rest later. Not one more inch; they’ll take a mile. Not One More Gun Law. To steal a collectivist favorite: None of us is as strong as all of us. It’s past time for all of us to be committed to the fight.

  3. You bring up a good point about de facto registration. What is the point of registration though, if it isn’t all-encompassing? The PICS database is worthless because while all handgun data gets logged at POS, true registration doesn’t exist here like it does in NY and NJ, and I can legally bring a stash of handguns into PA if I’m relocating here from out of state and the PSP would be none the wiser.

    The antis know that UBCs isn’t a cure-all for what ails them: Having the government know about every legally-owned gun in the country. And the only way to do that is to pass both UBCs as well as mandatory reporting of pre-existing firearms. And they’ve been successful in places like NY and CT in making it illegal to not report your scary-looking gun to the state. What’s to stop NY from one day passing a law requiring the registration of all long guns like they currently do with handguns? They could do it next year and none of us would be shocked I think. Make no mistake, UBCs is just the first step.

  4. This is nothing new. VPC has been trying to designate bolt actions as ‘intermediate sniper rifles’ and ban ‘sniper accessories’ for years.

  5. I’m willing to compromise — I’ll endure a “Universal Background Check” if that means I can buy anything I want anywhere I want including across State lines without going through an FFL. That seems reasonable to me. Jus’ Sayin’ …

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