So I'm listening to NPR on the drive home last night, and whoever that lady is, (Terry Gross? WHYY?) she's interviewing whoever that Washington Post writer (name begins with a 'Gr' I think) is that recently did that multi-part anti-gun set of stories about gunstores and gun traces. I'd link to it, but then I'd be linking to it, plus I don't want to go to the trouble. They were talking about gun issues revolving around the Tuscon shooting tragedy, particularly so-called lenient Arizona gun laws, and those laws contribution to events.
Anyway, they're confused. Or the NPR lady is confused. The Post guy knows what a semi-auto is, but she fixes on the 'auto' part and thinks the shooter's pistol was a type of a machine gun, a Glock 9mm, that was banned by the now expired Assault Weapons Ban of the Clinton era. The Post guy seems to prevaricate a bit, talking about what the Assault Weapons Ban actually banned was really confusing and isn't sure if this particular pistol was covered by it and the whole thing is a complicated tapestry of yada yada. He didn't correct her that it wasn't an auto, but semi-auto, but also doesn't make the mistake of referring to this Glock as some sort of a machine gun.
Other mistakes, the lady is horrified that people are pushing to allow CCW on campuses, and she assumes that you have to be 18 to buy a gun. The Post guy either didn't know or avoided the sticky detail that, while yes, a person can buy a rifle at 18, that person is not going to purchase a pistol, and probably can't get a conceal-carry permit, until they are 21.
I calmly explained to them through the radio in my car that they were a little mistaken. They, naturally, could not hear me. Not about the age issue. Nor did they hear me mention that the Assault Weapons Ban didn't ban this particular model. That, in fact, pretty much ANY handgun of this type or of any type that is commonly carried in the belt holster of police all over the country were not restricted by the Ban. Some very restrictive City and State level gun control regimes might tamp down on a Glock model 19 (e.g. NYC, DC, Chicago, in Massachusetts you can jump through the hoops and get a similar type from another manufacturer, etc.), yes, but that wasn't the Clinton Ban that they were then discussing. If a cop carries it on their belt, law abiding adults anywhere in this country can buy the same for themselves for the most part. (Regular people might not be able to buy what the cops carry in the trunk of their cruisers, but that's a whole 'nother thing.)
I'm wondering if the Post reporter really didn't know this minutiae, or was being purposely obtuse. You'd think he'd be as up to speed as any gunnie after all the work for his stories, but I guess this information can fall through his mental cracks.
Anyway, it's more circumstantially exploitative lefty-media claptrap that we've come to expect from NPR and many other venues. Their assumptions on the issue are based on a set of facts that are objectively wrong. Some know things that just aren't so, others know things and purposely obfuscate, and both do a disservice to the public they claim to serve. Boo NPR, boo Washington Post.
Update: Oh look. Confederate Yankee found Salon making a similar 'mistake' about the AWB. The Tatler noticed it too.
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