If I were a semiautomatic pistol, I would be getting a complex. What Democrats really hate is semiautomatic rifles, although it isn’t clear exactly why. True, the Sandy Hook killings were carried out with such a weapon, but in the scheme of things, rifles of any sort are rarely used as murder weapons. In 2011, according to the FBI, there were 14,612 victims of homicide in the U.S., down 14.7% from 2007. Of those 14,612, only 323 were murdered with any type of rifle. More than five times as many were killed with knives. More were killed with blunt objects, and more than twice as many were killed with the assailant’s bare hands. So it is hard to understand the current obsession with semiautomatic rifles.
Nevertheless, the obsession is there. And when liberals set out to ban semiautomatic rifles, if you read the fine print, they always sweep in a greater or lesser number of semiautomatic pistols, too. What puzzles me is why they always seem to leave out revolvers. Revolvers are used in vastly more crimes than semiautomatic rifles, so why do they get a free pass?
True, the cylinder of a revolver generally holds fewer bullets than the magazine of a semiautomatic rifle or pistol–usually five, six or seven, although some cylinders hold nine .22 caliber bullets. But so what? A lunatic bent on mass murder can just bring along three or four revolvers. Or he can reload.
For a long time, a gangster with a revolver was a symbol of menace:
Of course, the good guys used them too:
Revolvers are as lethal as any other firearm and there are still millions of them being sold, so it is not clear why they are being left out of the current gun control debate. I suspect the main reason is that the people who are arguing for gun control have no idea what they are talking about, don’t know the differences between one type of firearm and another, and find the word “semiautomatic” scary and therefore politically useful.
Of course, your attitude toward firearms can depend on whether you need one or not. Dianne Feinstein, who is introducing draconian gun control legislation in the Senate, formerly had a concealed carry permit. In 1995, she explained:
[T]he [New World Liberation Front] shot out all the windows of my home and I know the sense of helplessness that people feel. I know the urge to arm yourself, because that’s what I did. I was trained in firearms.
When I walked to the hospital when my husband was sick, I carried a concealed weapon. I made the determination that if somebody was going to try to take me out I was going to take them with me.
So, what happened? Feinstein explains that she “got rid of the permit once the New World Liberation Front was no longer a threat to her.” So obviously, once Feinstein no longer needed to carry a firearm, no one else needed to, either. It’s typical liberal hypocrisy. Barack Obama and David Gregory think Wayne LaPierre’s proposal to post armed guards in schools is outrageous. They send their children to Sidwell Friends, which, according to news reports, has eleven armed guards on duty, and that is before you get to the Secret Service detail for Malia and Sasha. It’s typical liberal logic: my kids are safe, who cares about yours?
So I guess we should be grateful that they apparently intend to let us keep our revolvers.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.