Skip to comments.Iowa Law Enforcement Support Strengthening and Renewing Assault Rifle Ban
Posted on 03/16/2004 5:51:38 PM PST by joesnuffy
Iowa Law Enforcement Support Strengthening and Renewing Assault Weapons Ban 3/15/2004
Press Release Iowans for the Prevention of Gun Violence 4403 1st Ave. SE, Suite 113 Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-3221 www.ipgv.org Contact: John Johnson Phone: 319-743-7823 The current assault weapons ban, enacted in 1994, will expire six months from now unless renewed by Congress and signed by the President
Cedar Rapids, IA - Iowans for the Prevention of Gun Violence (IPGV) joined with States United to Prevent Gun Violence, the national coalition of independent state-based organizations, today (March 12th) to urge President Bush and Congress to strengthen and renew the federal ban on military-style, semiautomatic assault weapons. The current assault weapons ban (AWB) is set to expire on September 13, 2004 -- just six months from now.
More than 60 police chiefs and police departments from across the state of Iowa have pledged their support for strengthening and renewing the federal assault weapons ban. The endorsements come from police chiefs and departments in all five congressional districts and from small towns to big cities. Only five police chiefs have indicated their opposition to a ban on assault weapons.
John Johnson, executive director of IPGV, said: "Iowa police chiefs know that military-style, semiautomatic assault weapons pose an unreasonable risk of death and injury to the law enforcement community and the general public." Based on a Violence Policy Center analysis of FBI data, between January 1, 1998 and December 31, 2001, one out of every five law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty was killed with an assault weapon. Though the U.S. Senate recently approved extending the current assault weapons ban for another ten years as an amendment to the onerous Gun Industry Immunity bill, the Senate leadership killed the entire package at the urging of the gun lobby. Furthermore, IPGV notes that a straight renewal of current law will not decrease the availability of assault weapons to civilians.
The current assault weapons ban prohibits the manufacturer and sale of 19 assault weapons by name -- AK-47s, AR-15s, and UZIs -- and other weapons based on their physical characteristics. Unfortunately, gun manufacturers have found ways to evade the ban by making cosmetic changes to their weapons, renaming them, and marketing them as post-ban products. For example, the vice president of Bushmaster firearms, maker of the post-ban AR-15 type assault rifle used in the Washington DC-area sniper shootings, has stated that since the passage of the original ban in 1994, Bushmaster's sales of AR-15-type assault rifles have increased 900 percent and revenue has increased by 10-15 times. In order to ban both pre-ban and post-ban assault weapons, the federal assault weapons ban needs to be strengthened. Johnson noted: "Some people will claim that renewal of the assault weapons ban in its present form would be a "political victory" because the NRA is opposed to even a straight renewal of current law. But a straight renewal would really be a victory for assault weapons manufacturers, like Bushmaster Firearms, because they will be able to continue to manufacturer and market military-style, semiautomatic assault weapons to civilians. Americans need a real victory -- an assault weapons ban that bans all assault weapons and protects the law enforcement community and the general public from these weapons of war."
"Congress never meant for there to be two classes of assault weapons -- one class of assault weapons banned by the 1994 law, and another class of functionally identical assault weapons (so-called post-ban assault weapons) that are not banned." IPGV called on Congress to support legislation pending in the House and Senate, the "Assault Weapons Ban and Law Enforcement Protection Act," that would stop the gun industry from manufacturing post-ban assault weapons, such as the Bushmaster XM15.
Nationally, 63% of Americans -- including a majority of gun owners -- favor strengthening the assault weapons ban to prevent the gun industry from manufacturing commercial models of military-style assault weapons, according to a recent survey commissioned by the Consumer Federation of America.
Kirsten Meredith of IPGV noted, "We hope Iowa's Senators and Congressmen are paying attention -- Iowa's citizens and police chiefs want an effective assault weapons ban. The current ban will expire six months from now, and the clock is ticking."
Date of release: March 12, 2004 Join Together Online publishes selected press releases consistent with our mission to support communities working to prevent gun violence. The views expressed are those of the issuing organization and do not necessarily represent Join Together.
Scouts Out! Cavalry Ho!
BLATANTLY unconstitutional too.
John Johnson, executive director of IPGV, said: "Iowa police chiefs know that military-style, semiautomatic assault weapons pose an unreasonable risk of death and injury to the law enforcement community and the general public."
Then quit being cops and let real men have those jobs.
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