Photo credit: Credit: Photo by Gage Skidmore courtesy of Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0
Let’s give credit where it is due: Joe Biden has consistently argued that American citizens don’t have a right to buy and use semi-automatic AR-15 and AR-10 rifles. He’s also made it extremely clear that if he becomes our nation’s 46th president, he’ll do all he can to ban and confiscate these commonly owned firearms.
Oh, and Biden is absolutely no fan of the NRA and its more than five million members. His anti-NRA sound bites portray him as the tough guy, in his mind.
Biden, the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee for the 2020 Election, for example, recently tweeted: “Weapons of war have no place in our communities. When I was a senator, I took on the @NRA and secured a 10-year-ban on assault weapons—and as president, I’ll ban these weapons again.”
As with most anti-gun extremists, Biden insists, incorrectly, that these popular semi-automatic rifles are “assault weapons” and their only legitimate use is for warfare. This, despite the fact that an “assault weapon” is, by definition, a fully automatic firearm; whereas, AR-15 and AR-10 rifles are semi-automatics, meaning a single pull of the trigger fires a single shot.
Current estimates put the number of AR-type and AK-style rifles owned by American citizens in the realm of 18 million plus units, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). These semi-automatic rifles are used for hunting, in numerous shooting competitions, for home defense and for recreational shooting.
Many an American rancher has an AR-15 in his or her pickup truck as a necessary tool to take care of predators that prey on their livestock. Law-enforcement officers rely on AR-style rifles for numerous policing situations. More than a few Americas also have an AR on hand as part of their preparation for a possible disaster situation.
And, contrary to the breathless and incorrect reporting by the mainstream media, AR-style rifles are very rarely used in crimes.
None of which appears to matter to Biden. On his website, Biden lays out his larger anti-Second Amendment plans, including a “[ban on] the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.” He also promises to use executive authority to ban the importation of such firearms.
In addition, “Biden will also institute a program to buy back weapons of war currently on our streets. This will give individuals who now possess assault weapons or high-capacity magazines two options: sell the weapons to the government, or register them under the National Firearms Act.”
The term “buy-back” is extremely misleading and, in truth, amounts to confiscation. The federal government, for starters, did not sell these rifles to American citizens who were exercising their Second Amendment rights, so there is no “back” or return purchase operating in such a scheme.
If Biden gets his way, Americans who own AR-style rifles would have to take the cash or else! That’s not a purchase between willing parties—that’s confiscation.
In what sounds like a plan B, Biden’s plan also says, “Currently, the National Firearms Act requires individuals possessing machine-guns, silencers, and short-barreled rifles to undergo a background check and register those weapons with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Due to these requirements, such weapons are rarely used in crimes. As president, Biden will pursue legislation to regulate possession of existing assault weapons under the National Firearms Act.”
The logic here is terribly convoluted. Biden is arguing that the mere registration of a firearm means it will rarely be used in a crime. So, according to this logic, a criminal who has planned a crime, in which he or she intends to be armed, is going to hear about this law, register his or her gun, and then refrain from committing the crime?
All registration of semi-automatic rifles would accomplish is to create a handy list for future government confiscation.
Also, it currently costs $200 to register the above-mentioned suppressors and short-barreled rifles under the National Firearms Act. So, under Biden’s plan, everyone who owns an AR-type rifle would have to pay $200 to register and keep said rifle. That’s $200 per rifle. Multiple rifles would mean multiple payments of $200.