Sunday, October 12, 2003

There was a story reported by KING 5 news here in Seattle about illegal gun kits being seized in Redmond. According to the report, ATF agents raided a warehouse that contained kits to convert FNFAL automatic rifles from the semi-auto configuration they're legal as to fully auto machine guns, which, inviolation of he 2nd and 14th Amendments to the Constitution, are illegal.

Problem is, the reporter, one Pat McReynolds, is wrong.

The kits were legal up until a few months ago, when the ATF decided they were not. Instead of working with importers and gun dealers, they decided to flex their muscle and conduct raids. And the kits still don't make the guns fully auto - you still to get a receiver. McReynolds also editorializes shamelessly, using terms like "agents found enough illegal machine gun kits to outfit a small army," and "Thousands of machine guns ready to sell and assemble can easily attract buyers with sinister plans."

Three points:

  • The ATF is acting in violation of the Constitution - no surprise, as they've done so in the past and gotten away with it.

  • Machine guns in enough numbers to outfit a small army could also outfit a plane full of passengers to dissuade terrorists from hijacking the plane and flying it into a skyscraper.

  • Pat McReynolds is yellow and left-biased, better suited for the "National Enquirer" than a major metropolitan news organization. However, having viewed the major news organizations in Seattle for the past few years, he's in good company.

  • My thanks for Vin Suprinowicz's "The Libertarian" column for his insights and for bringing this to my attention. As it was, I never heard this on KING-5 TV news.

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