If You Hated 'Assault Weapons,' You'll Hate 'Assault Magazines' Even More


Today the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force unveiled a "comprehensive set of policy principles designed to reduce gun violence while respecting the 2nd Amendment Rights of law-abiding Americans." What is the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force? A bunch of Democrats appointed by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and led by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) with the assistance of 11 (!) "vice chairs." Their mission: to "reduce and prevent gun violence while also protecting the rights of law-abiding individuals without a history of dangerous mental illness to own legitimate firearms for legitimate purposes." Are the 12 chairs of the task force also the only members? Possibly.

To no one's surprise, the task force's recommendations look a lot like the president's, which look a lot like the measures that gun control activists have been pushing for decades. So rather than delve into the familiar details, I have performed a content analysis of the task force's 20-page report that may illuminate some broader themes:

Mentions of…

safe/safer/safety: 44

hunting/hunter/sports/sportsman/sporting: 22

children/family/families: 20

assault weapon/assault rifle/assault magazine: 16

rights: 14

Second Amendment: 12

threat/dangerous: 9

commonsense/sensible/reasonable: 8 (plus seven more in the press release)

law-abiding: 6

public health: 3 ("including public health crisis of epidemic proportions")

defense/self-defense: 3

logic: 0

An "assault magazine," by the way, is not a periodical you use to squash spiders; it is an ammunition feeding device that holds more than 10 rounds. Such illegitimate magazines, by their very nature, can be used only to attack people and never for self-defense, hunting, or sporting purposes.