Obama Bans More than 100,000 American-Made Rifles

(OpposingViews) – According to The Korea Times, the Obama administration has blocked efforts by the South Korean government to sell over a  hundred thousand surplus M1 Garand and Carbine rifles into the United States market. These self-loading were rifles introduced in 1926 and 1941.

As rifles, they are especially well-suited to community defense in an emergency, as in the cases of community defense following Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Along with AR-15 type rifles, the M1 rifles are the quintessential firearms of responsible citizenship, precisely the type of firearms which civic responsibility organizations such as the Appleseed Project teach people how to use.

According to a South Korean official, “The U.S. insisted that imports of the aging rifles could cause problems such as firearm accidents. It was also worried the weapons could be smuggled to terrorists, gangs or other people with bad intentions.”

Regarding the second objection, any firearm lawfully imported into the United States would eventually be sold by a Federal Firearm Licensee who, pursuant to the background check system imposed by Congress (and endorsed by the NRA) would have to contact federal or state law enforcement to verify that the gun buyer is not prohibited from possessing firearms.

Accordingly, the risk that the South Korean surplus guns might fall into the hands of gangsters or other bad people is exactly the same as with the sale of any other retail firearm in the United States. Notably, neither the M1 Garand nor the M1 carbine are concealable, and the M1 Garand is long, heavy, and bulky. Accordingly, the criminal utility of such guns is relatively low.

The second Obama administration objection is accidents. But in fact, increasing gun density in the United States has been associated with steeply declining rates of gun accidents. In 1948 there were .36 guns per person. (That is, about one gun for every three Americans.) By 2004, there was nearly one gun for every American. In 1948, there were 1.6 fatal gun accidents per 100,000 persons. By 2004, the rate had fallen by 86%, so that there were .22 fatal accidents per 100,000 persons. (For underlying data, see Appendix B of my amicus brief in Heller.)

Legally, it is indisputable that the guns are importable. Being over 50 years old, the rifles are automatically “Curios and Relics” according to federal law. 27 CFR section 478.11. Accordingly, they are by statutory definition importable. 18 USC section 925 (e)(1). Notwithstanding the law, the Obama administration has the ability to pressure the South Korean government to block the sale of the guns.

President Obama was elected on the promise that he supported individual Second Amendment rights. His administration’s thwarting of the import of these American-made rifles is not consistent with that promise.

Source: Opposing Views

3 thoughts on “Obama Bans More than 100,000 American-Made Rifles

  1. Here is something that is going on back home in Charleston, West Virginia, a Pro Gun/2nd Amendment State full of sportsmen and hunters alike. This to me seems like Iraq when the troops first put boots on the ground, weapons cards, voluntary weapons buy outs, and penalties for those who do not. Sad to say it is happening right at my front door in my home state, as i am currently else were in defense of our freedoms and liberties. I have followed Alex Jones on Youtube.com and have opened my eyes to what is happening in our own back yards.

    Charleston Police announced a program Monday they hope will lower the number of gun crimes in the city.

    The program includes rewards of $100 for informants who bring police information that leads to the arrest of someone for possessing an illegal gun, and for anyone who allows the police to “buy back” a gun.

    Representatives of the city, along with U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin and Kanawha County Prosecutor Mark Plants, attended to show their support of “Project Gun Safe.”

    “This is really about partnership and networking with the community, which is why we have so many groups here,” said Charleston Police Chief Brent Webster. “That is how this is going to work.”

    The program also includes an effort to document firearms held legally within the city. Charleston police will be giving out safety locks to citizens that voluntarily provide a firearm inventory card for each gun they own to the Charleston Police Department.

    The firearm inventory cards will also be given out so that people can store them separately of their guns for a record of serial numbers in case they get stolen, Webster said.

    Money for the program will come from the city’s asset forfeiture funds, he said. Currently there is about $190,000 in the fund, Webster said.

    “We can always try harder to be everywhere all the time but that’s not always going to happen,” Webster said. “We need the community’s help.”

    Webster said the initiative has been in the planning since at least May, going to community meetings and laying the groundwork. He said the community’s response has been overwhelmingly positive.

    “Gun violence, as everyone in this room knows, damages the fabric of a community like no other,” Goodwin said. “Often it sparks a cycle of retaliation that lasts for years and sparks anger and bitterness. … The best way to stop it is to get guns out of the hands of offenders.”

    Plants said that in conjunction with the initiative, he was making two changes in his office.

    He said for anyone convicted of a crime while in possession of an illegal gun, he would start asking for the maximum penalty at sentencing. Plants also plans to start having a prosecutor from his office at the arraignment of anyone accused of committing a gun crime so that they can ask for a property bond on the person.

    “I think what’s exciting about this is it truly puts communities first,” Plants said.

    On Aug. 28, Charleston police will announce specific plans to educate children within the city about gun violence, Webster said.

    “As someone who has lived their whole life on the West Side and knows the good of the West Side, I think this as a great idea,” said Delegate Meshea Poore, D-Kanawha, who attended the press conference. “We have everyone partnering up. We can’t do it without each other.”

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