Letter: Speaking out against high-capacity firearm magazines

By on January 20, 2011

What hunter needs a high-capacity magazine—a clip that holds more than 10 rounds—like the one a gunman used to shoot 20 people in a matter of seconds in Arizona? These magazines are for killing a lot of people fast.

The United States Constitution guarantees to our citizens the right to keep and bear arms. At the same time that we can all acknowledge this basic right, I believe that we should also be able to come together to develop reasonable, common-sense laws designed to ensure that the right to bear arms is exercised safely and responsibly.

The assumption that more guns reduces crime is a fantasy. According to the Violence Policy Center (www.vpc.org/), the highest gun-death rates are:
1. Louisiana, with 46% gun ownership
2. Mississippi (54%)
3. Alaska (61%)
4. Alabama (57%)
5. Nevada (32%)

The lowest gun-death rates are:
50. Hawaii (10%)
49. Rhode Island (13%)
48. Maine (13%)
47. Connecticut (16%)
46. New York (18%)

More guns do not equal less crime. Contact Congressman Randy Hultgren (www.hultgren.house.gov/) and tell him to sign a bill that outlaws the sale of high-capacity magazines.
Chrisi Vineyard
Oswego, Ill.


  1. outdoor1

    January 20, 2011 at 4:18 PM

    Question: Would enacting new or additional gun laws keep high capacity clips out of the hands of criminals? The answer is no. The city of Chicago has pages of gun laws on the books but astronomical amounts of gun crimes. You can’t own an AK-47 but they are still found in Chicago. You can’t own an M-16 but they are still found in Chicago. You can’t even own a handgun within the city limits unless it’s registered with the city as of June 28th, 2010. What this means is that handgun crimes are all illegal but they still happen. Whether they have one gun law or 1,000 gun laws the criminals still have what they need to do what they want. Why don’t people understand “THE CRIMINALS DON’T CARE WHAT LAWS YOU MAKE.” “THEY ARE STILL GOING TO DO WHAT THEY WANT.” The law abiding citizen is the one who follows these laws and is unable to protect themselves because they follow some gun law that doesn’t work. Let the people protect themselves. Also, I’m not sure if you are a gun owner, but a moderately trained human being can carry multiple clips on him and change out an empty clip within seconds. So your argument is irrevelant.
    Lastly, I pray for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords to make a speedy and full recovery. I also pray for all the other victims of such a senseless and horrible crime.

  2. Doublewide

    January 21, 2011 at 10:05 AM

    Ms. Vineyard,

    Thank you for taking the time to point out that hunters don’t need HIGH CAPACITY MAGAZINES…you are correct. If you can’t take down prey in 10 rounds our less its unethical hunting or you’re just bad at it and maybe you should rely on the grocery store. That being set aside what relationship does that have to banning high capacity magazines? Is there some unknown statistic that says hunters are purchasing high capacity magazines to commit crimes?

    Hunting firearms are not designed to use high capacity magazines. There are some crossover firearms that serve a dual purpose such as the AR15 style frames which are becoming more and more popular as hunting guns. A portion of this is due to the availability of parts and accessories developed by hundreds of manufacturers worldwide. An inexpensive add-on that can change a firearm to a more personal experience adds to the sales of that type of firearm. So again how are hunters being blamed for the creation of high capacity magazines when they don’t use them? Actually if you look at the DNR they specifically state the number of rounds and size of magazines hunters can legally have. If you did some actual research you’d find that hunters spend more money on conservation than any other group and shouldn’t be blamed for someone illegally using a high capacity magazine.

    You quote statistics from the Violence Policy Center, what you don’t say is the site is clearly an antigun site designed to promote antigun issues. They self proclaim themselves “As the most aggressive group in the gun control movement” GUN CONTROL are the words used by them. I’m sorry it doesn’t sound like a Pro 2nd Amendment group to me. Why not take statistics from a group whose goal is to protect the citizens and enforce the laws of the United States of America like the FBI. They released a study showing how the increase in firearm sales since 2009 is directly related to a DROP in crime, especially in states that have a current conceal/carry law in place. But that would be anti VPC policy.

    To stay on task with your initial subject: high capacity magazines. What makes you think that banning such items will reduce crime and/or violence? Do you have any statistics that prove this, that are not generated from a biased organization? If you look at violent crimes that have taken place in the past, high capacity magazines were NOT relevant when instances like the AZ shooting took place. In the past the perpetrators used multiple firearms eliminating the need to stop and waste the 3-5 seconds it takes to reload. Therefore would banning high capacity magazines not create additional gun sale based on what happened in the past? Can’t buy an extended magazine, just purchase an additional gun, the end results are the same. So please explain to me how banning such an item would reduce crime, I’m at a loss in understanding your logic.

    In closing please don’t urge our community to waste the time of Congressman Randy Hultgren by attempting to ban such items. Please allow him to focus his valuable time and resources on more important items such as Education Funding and Budget issues.


  3. RM

    January 21, 2011 at 9:26 PM

    Yes and let’s not forget Hultgren’s focus on the symbolic repeal of healthcare reform which is already helping a lot of people. We certainly need to reward this symbolic gesture with nothing more than a symbolic paycheck. Hopefully Hultgren and the new majority will work on some meaningful issues like getting folks back to work.