THE VIOLENCE POLICY CENTER has been trying to cash in on the D.C. sniper by nattering on about "sniper rifles" and the "sniper subculture." This argument is pretty thoroughly demolished -- by a Washington Post movie critic, no less -- in this article. Excerpt:
How much does he know about guns? Is he a "gun person," who reads the shooter's magazines and goes to gun shows and orders sniper manuals from the reprint houses? No credible evidence exists to prove this. . . .
For one thing, he's chosen quite a prosaic, low-cost system. It so happens we are in a period of remarkable advances in long-distance shooting, not merely with those laser range finders, but also with a whole batch of ultra magnum cartridges of very recent vintage, that make shots at heretofore undreamed-of distances possible for the common man as opposed to the skilled professional or heavily committed amateur shooter. He doesn't appear to be using any cutting-edge technology.
His choice of weapon reveals something as well. It's notable that he hasn't selected a firearm or a cartridge that's linked to sniping as it's practiced professionally.
"No credible evidence" -- just PR from an advocacy group with a bad record for trustworthiness.