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Press spreads gun misinformation

In other news, water is wet.

Another article on the Illinois troopers charged with illegal machine gun possession says:

Under federal rules, anyone who can pass a background check, pay $200 and file the proper forms can legally purchase one or convert one to automatic fire. Even a ban on “military style” assault weapons lapsed in 2004.

Err, no. There has been a ban on civilian possession of new machine guns since 1986. And there is no such thing as a ‘military style’ assault weapon and that ban had nothing to with machine guns.

So it’s no surprise that some are puzzled by the charges – and the possibility of prison time – for three Illinois State Police troopers accused in federal court of illegally possessing machine guns. Since police officers should easily pass background checks, the crime looks like a mere oversight.

The only people that would be puzzled are the retarded. Anyone familiar with the laws knows full well these guys willfully broke them. They should stand trial like everyone else or the law should not apply to anyone. Additionally, these are police officers who are exempt from the aforementioned 1986 ban if they have departmental approval for the weapons (though the officers can’t retain possession of them).

Update: Saved before I finished. It’s not a mere oversight since possession has been banned. Also, I would think that those who are sworn in and paid to uphold the law would know the law. For that, they should be held to a higher standard, if anything. This was not an oversight. This was a willful violation of the law.

Update 2: Even the Brady bunch defends this willful violation:

“If that’s what happened, it’s a lapse in judgment,” said John Shanks, director of law enforcement relations for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, of the registration process.

That’s not what happened and they would know that too.

6 Responses to “Press spreads gun misinformation”

  1. medicman Says:

    Actually, unless you were just talking about Illinois (I don’t know the law there) civilians can possess class III weapons made before 1986 following the steps outlines in the article. Anything made after 1986 is a no-no.

  2. SayUncle Says:

    You’re correct. I misspoke (err, miswrote?).

  3. Blake Says:

    Since police officers should easily pass background checks

    Unless you work for the Tennessee Highway Patrol….but I digress. 🙂

  4. Marc Says:

    I don’t think that individuals in Illinois can possess select fire weapons under any circumstances. The article makes it sound like all you need for a machingun is $200 and a NICS test which is not true in any state. The background check takes months rather than minutes for a NICS check and you need to get permission from the chief law enforcement officer in your area.

  5. robert Says:

    I’m fascinated by the “Ignorance of the Law is no excuse,” statement since any lawyer can prove that any person, judge, plaintiff, defendant, prosecutor, et, et, is going to be ignorant of MOST of the Local, State, and National Law. There is just too much of it. Police are frequently wildly ignorant of law. Most of them can’t even recite the simple OATH they took when they swore their commission.

    The law has gotten to a point where ignorance of the law OUGHT to be an excuse. The lawyers don’t know it. The prosecutor and the police don’t know it, and are willing to bend the parts they might know, the citizens certainly don’t know it. Not even the legislators know what the heck the law is these days.

    These police guys ought to walk. So should any civilians who are ever charged under the same law.

    In traffic court, as soon as they have the policeman swear that he is an expert with the radar gun, or followed correct procedure with evidence…just ask him to recite the Oath he swore when he was commissioned or the specific constitiuional authority under which he wrote the ticket. He won’t have a clue. Then move to have his testimony struck since he represented himself as an “expert” but is unable to provide the simplest documentation of the color of law he operated under.

  6. Sebastian Says:

    Frankly as a supporter of both the LEO community and the RKBA, the hypocrisy of the powers that be within the LEO community on firearms related issues is becoming tiresome. The “it’s ok for me but not for you” thing is really tired.

    I actually had a chance to interview Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley and Police Commissioner Hamm about the assault weapons ban they’re cooking up today. Read this if you don’t mind your bloodpressure going up:

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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