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Ban It Harder: Obama’s ‘Armor-Piercing Bullets’ Suggestion

This class of bullets is already illegal. Why does Obama suggest further legislation?

by
Clayton E. Cramer

Bio

March 12, 2013 - 12:00 am

I was writing an article for another publication about President Obama’s executive orders and presidential memoranda in response to the Newtown shootings; I was struck by how completely trivial nearly all of them were.

Many of them were essentially orders to the federal bureaucracy to enforce existing laws (such as requiring executive-branch departments to inform the national background check system that a person is prohibited from owning a firearm under existing law), or to take uncontroversial steps such as tracing the history of firearms confiscated in crimes.

It appears Obama is doing what he does best: he knows that the actions requiring congressional approval are unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled House (and possibly even the Democrat-controlled Senate), but he still throws a bone to a vocal and wealthy constituency.

One proposal from Obama enforces the likelihood of this strategy, yet also — once again — suggests that those surrounding him are not the sharpest crayons in the box. The request, which requires congressional approval: “Protect police by finishing the job of getting rid of armor-piercing bullets.”

I scratched my head for a few minutes on this one, because current federal law already makes it a crime to manufacture, import, sell, or transfer “armor-piercing ammunition” except to the government or for export.  (See 18 USC 922 (A) (7) and (8).)

The definition of “armor-piercing ammunition” under federal law means ammunition that is capable of being fired from a handgun, and can penetrate soft body armor. Such ammunition uses a bullet constructed of a hard metal such as tungsten or uranium, or the hard metal jacket of the bullet is more than 25% of the bullet’s weight.

The reason that this definition applies only to handgun ammunition is that all center-fire rifle ammunition, regardless of bullet design, will penetrate soft body armor.

It is certainly possible that Obama wants to ban all center-fire rifle ammunition as well. Certainly, the gun-control groups have shown a great willingness to use these dishonest tactics to achieve their goals. The net effect of such a ban, however, would be to eliminate all hunting of deer and larger animals throughout the United States.

Former President Clinton recently reminded Democrats that the 1993 Brady Law and the 1994 federal assault weapons ban played a major part in turning both House and Senate over to the Republican Party. To pass an effective ban on hunting by banning hunting ammunition would make that seem like brilliant politics by comparison.

Let me suggest a more likely explanation: President Obama and the people that work for him have very limited contact with ordinary Americans.

These guys probably couldn’t tell a rifle from a shotgun, or a semi-automatic pistol from a revolver, or jacketed hollow point from lead round nose ammunition without considerable coaching. Recall his considerable list of gaffes: this is a president who doesn’t know that Austrians speak Germanwho doesn’t know how to pronounce “corpsman”; and who thinks the United States invented the automobile.

There is one thing more dangerous than an arrogant, highly educated person, and that is an arrogant, ignorant person, because he doesn’t know he’s ignorant. I realize that in a democracy we are doomed to usually elect people just a little bit more informed than the voters; perhaps the voters are getting a lot less informed.

Clayton E. Cramer teaches history at the College of Western Idaho. His most recent book is My Brother Ron: A Personal and Social History of the Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill (2012). He is raising capital for a feature film about the Oberlin Rescue of 1858.

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All Comments   (25)
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All this started when Benghazi became an issue. I think Dems will go to any lengths to keep that scandal off the front page.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Could it be that Barry, using this tired excuse of a talking point, has got little else and simply hacks-up a furball from the Clinton Era ? We're all pointedly aware of how many WJC employees are there now, Including One : Eric Holder.
We also recall how strident Saint Eric was in that former life, as a YouTube view or two clearly shows.
So, let us imagine that Barry had a Meaningful Catch Phrase contest and Mr. Law Enforcement,[and novice rifle importer] won the $ 50.00 dollars, and the Baskin-Robbins 2 for 1 coupon.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
My only disagreement with Mr. Cramer's article is his definition of "dangerous." The most dangerous people in the Country are those who voted aitch back IN! (Or worse, those who stayed home and LET him be voted back in!)
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It doesn't matter what they say, the end goal is a total ban on civilian possession of guns.

“They have the guns and therefore we are for peace and for reformation through the ballot. When we have the guns then it will be through the bullet.”
Vladimir Ilyich Lenin
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I see one commenter here prefacing his comment by saying that he is not going to go into “tin foil hat territory,” which I take to mean that he is not going to indulge in any of what the Left and their allies in the MSM, Academia, the Entertainment Industry, and a large chunk of Society at large defines as—and he apparently agrees is--“conspiracy theory nonsense.”

I submit that he, and many others on the Right, have bought into the “reality” that the Left and its allies have crafted, and to their arguments as well, and have accepted their definitions of just what is “acceptable,” and “rational” and “within the realm of possibility” to think of and to talk about and to debate, and what is, as the Left sees it, supposedly “outside of the realm of possibility,” “not possible,” and just plain old “crazy talk,” which is to say that they have allowed their opponents to define “reality,” and to set the boundaries, terms, definitions, and vocabulary of the debate, which is, in effect, to abandon the field and to surrender before the fight has even begun.

Thus, say many, to be extremely suspicious of the government’s reported recent purchase of close to 2 billion rounds (count ‘em) of hollow point ammunition, justified by government spokesmen as being for “target practice” (a 24 year supply, even at the “war level rate” that was expended during recent major U.S. military actions)—HP rounds specifically designed to be used against human targets, but more expensive and ill suited for use in “target practice” than the less expensive solid lead bullets customarily used for that purpose—is wildly over suspicious, “paranoid,” and just plain “crazy.”

Similarly, to be alarmed at and suspicious of the DHS’s reported purchase of some thousands of light armored vehicles for use here in the U.S. is also “paranoid” and “crazy,” and linking these two events even more paranoid and even more crazy, for we should all be guided by and made calm by the statements of various government spokesmen, who all "have our best interests at heart," and have assured us that these events are all very ordinary, and nothing at all to be suspicious of or alarmed about.

Adding to this the additional fact that Obama and his Administration and allies are--at the same time--bending their concerted efforts--on both the Federal and State levels--to pursue various “gun control" schemes that would limit each citizen’s right to bear arms, and make both guns and ammunition harder to obtain and more expensive, is obviously proof positive of dementia on the part of those suspicious of these developments.

No doubt the same was thought by many “right thinking,” “level-headed,” “educated,” urbane, sophisticated, and cultured, “reasonable, rational” individuals in any number of countries in past and recent history who watched, as the ever increasing flow of unusual, “unthinkable” event after event, and each new statement, law, regulation, and procedure, bit by bit, encroached on and limited their freedom, until that freedom disappeared, and they came under the rule of one tyranny or another, and saw their supply of and access to weapons—and their rights to and chances of self defense and freedom—vanish.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Obama is just repeating the same words over and over again, along with all the other anti-gunners. They have the bully pulpit and want to take up as much time as possible, no matter how useless and senseless the words they speak. "Bully" in the current definition of the word applies more now than when Teddy Roosevelt first used the term.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Progressives want to ban all privately owned fire arms. Any means necessary to achieve their goals are justified. Truth doesn't matter and the Constitution is simply a scrap of paper to them. One thing they do know is that without the 2nd Amendment, the Constitution falls and there is no limit to scope of their potential power. Stand and fight - Molon Labe!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Will a .308 soft tip deer hunting round penetrate a soft body armor vest? I would assume a FMJ would do the trick.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Yes. Several of them. And at distances where you will need a scope to clearly identify your target.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Obama's call to ban "armor peircing" ammo is nothing new. The gun grabbers call for this all the time. The goal is to ban all "high power" ammo. Doubt it. If you watch crime shows on TV you'll see most scoped rifles refered to as "sniper" rifles. These are calls by people who know nothing about guns, don't want to know and don't care. All they know is they don't want us to keep ours!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
For what it's worth, I have shot a hole through 1/4-inch steel (at close range) with a round-ball from a black power rifle. This was not one of those spiffy modern ammo for black power -- like a jacketed sabot round -- just a plain, old-fashioned round-ball. So, does that mean we make lead and all of the hardening alloys controlled substances?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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