While an impressionable young soldier in Vietnam, my First Sergeant once told me, “God gave soldiers, through the genius of John Browning, the Model 19ll pistol and that it carried eight shots because that was enough.” However, he went on to say that the only purpose of a pistol was to defend yourself adequately while you reached your rifle and the only purpose of your rifle was to defend yourself while you called in artillery and/or air strikes. Another pithy comment he made regarding pistols was that if you were involved in a gunfight and needed more than eight shots, you were not in a gunfight, but a war, and were ill-prepared. My good friend, former Secretary of State Bob Brown, has recently issued an op-ed decrying the need for pistol magazines greater than ten rounds. In one sense, my old First Sergeant would agree with him.
However, I would offer that the issue is greater than the capacity of a particular gun. This is America and the purpose of our government is to protect and defend the “inalienable rights of man” which can be boiled down to preserving the maximum amount of liberty of each and every individual. Criminalizing inanimate objects and thus creating a criminal by possession of said item is contrary to such an objective. We must outlaw criminal behavior and punish that…not objects. Outlawing large capacity magazines will not eliminate evil nor will it enable a citizenry to confront it.
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