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Feinstein to Introduce updated assault weapons bill in new Congress

Original post made on Dec 19, 2012

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), author of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban that expired in 2004, announced this week that she will introduce updated legislation early next year to stop the sale of assault weapons and ammunition.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, December 18, 2012, 12:17 PM

Comments (19)

Posted by Maverick
a resident of Walnut Creek
on Dec 19, 2012 at 9:09 am

After Moscone was killed, Feinstein got herself a conceal and carry permit! I will support weapon bans when I see proof the gang bangers and thugs have turned in ALL their weaponry - never gonna happen.

Posted by bz
a resident of Blackhawk
on Dec 19, 2012 at 12:32 pm

I didn't vote for her, but have to applaud her action here! This sounds like a sensible first step! Now to tackle our needs in the mental health arena!

Posted by Concerned Party
a resident of Danville
on Dec 19, 2012 at 3:04 pm

A 6 year old with 11 Bushwacker bullets in her body is what the NRA must recognize as the consequence of defending the right to own Assault Weapons for hunting and target practice! What am I missing?

Posted by danville Grandma
a resident of Danville
on Dec 19, 2012 at 4:09 pm

People kill with guns. Guns don't jump up and do it alone. What is wrong with your thinking? Guns protect proplel. It is our 2nd amendment right to protect ourselves. Quit blaming the guns. Figure out what is wrong with these whacked out people???

Posted by MMG
a resident of Danville
on Dec 20, 2012 at 6:45 am

As I recall, Nancy Lanza's arsenal did not protect her.

Posted by rufous
a resident of Alamo
on Dec 20, 2012 at 8:11 am

This used to be called out by the press as political grandstanding and exploiting a tragedy for political gain. Now we obediantly accept our leaders' admonishment of our constitution, and whatever new restrictions to freedom we are dealt.

Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Dec 20, 2012 at 8:42 am

..And George Zimmerman's life certainly has been improved by his purchase of a gun, right? And how about that contractor from Alamo who shot the jeweler a couple of years ago? His gun did a lot for him, too, as I recall.

Grandma - as soon as you can "figure out what's wrong with these whacked out people" you can book your ticket to Norway to pick up your Nobel Prize. In the meantime, rational people accept the fact that there have always been people who were "whacked out" - either permanently or temporarily - and cope with that. Giving them access to rapid-fire guns with large supplies of ammo is usually not a good way to do that, as it turns out.

It's called a "reality-based" approach to life.

Posted by Samantha
a resident of Walnut Creek
on Dec 20, 2012 at 12:23 pm

December 19, 2012
In the wake of a monstrous crime like a madman's mass murder of defenseless women and children at the Newtown, Conn., elementary school, the nation's attention is riveted on what could have been done to prevent such a massacre.

Luckily, some years ago, two famed economists, William Landes at the University of Chicago and John Lott at Yale, conducted a massive study of multiple victim public shootings in the United States between 1977 and 1995 to see how various legal changes affected their frequency and death toll.

Landes and Lott examined many of the very policies being proposed right now in response to the Connecticut massacre: waiting periods and background checks for guns, the death penalty and increased penalties for committing a crime with a gun.

None of these policies had any effect on the frequency of, or carnage from, multiple-victim shootings. (I note that they did not look at reforming our lax mental health laws, presumably because the ACLU is working to keep dangerous nuts on the street in all 50 states.)

Only one public policy has ever been shown to reduce the death rate from such crimes: concealed-carry laws.

Posted by Dave pfeiffer
a resident of Danville
on Dec 20, 2012 at 12:27 pm

-- AND--thanks Sam------Mayan Palace Theater, San Antonio, Texas, this week: Jesus Manuel Garcia shoots at a movie theater, a police car and bystanders from the nearby China Garden restaurant; as he enters the movie theater, guns blazing, an armed off-duty cop shoots Garcia four times, stopping the attack. Total dead: Zero.

-- Winnemucca, Nev., 2008: Ernesto Villagomez opens fire in a crowded restaurant; concealed carry permit-holder shoots him dead. Total dead: Two. (I'm excluding the shooters' deaths in these examples.)

-- Appalachian School of Law, 2002: Crazed immigrant shoots the dean and a professor, then begins shooting students; as he goes for more ammunition, two armed students point their guns at him, allowing a third to tackle him. Total dead: Three.

-- Santee, Calif., 2001: Student begins shooting his classmates -- as well as the "trained campus supervisor"; an off-duty cop who happened to be bringing his daughter to school that day points his gun at the shooter, holding him until more police arrive. Total dead: Two.

-- Pearl High School, Mississippi, 1997: After shooting several people at his high school, student heads for the junior high school; assistant principal Joel Myrick retrieves a .45 pistol from his car and points it at the gunman's head, ending the murder spree. Total dead: Two.

-- Edinboro, Pa., 1998: A student shoots up a junior high school dance being held at a restaurant; restaurant owner pulls out his shotgun and stops the gunman. Total dead: One.

By contrast, the shootings in gun-free zones invariably result in far higher casualty figures -- Sikh temple, Oak Creek, Wis. (six dead); Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Va. (32 dead); Columbine High School, Columbine, Colo. (12 dead); Amish school, Lancaster County, Pa. (five little girls killed); public school, Craighead County, Ark. (five killed, including four little girls).

All these took place in gun-free zones, resulting in lots of people getting killed -- and thereby warranting inclusion in the Mother Jones study.

Posted by Mike
a resident of Danville
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:15 pm

THESE ARE NOT ASSAULT WEAPONS (yeah I know I capitalized it)

Just because the press and the politicians want to call them assualt weapons, THEY ARE NOT.

The military has weapons that fire continuosly when you keep your finger on the trigger. That is called "Full Automatic" or "full auto". Those are generally illegal in CA.

Those same rifles that the military has have a second switch which will allow them to fire 3 round bursts with the finger held on the trigger. Those are also generally illegal in CA.

People in CA DO NOT HAVE access to "assualt rifles" like the military uses. Stop being brainwashed by the press and the politicians.

What we do have in CA, are rifles that are colored black, instead of the wood you would see on a regular rifle. These shoot one shot for each time you press on the trigger. This is called semi-automatic. The only thing automatic about them is that, when fired, they will eject the just fired cartridge and will load a new cartridge. There is nothing else automatic about them. They are not military rifles.

Also, I keep hearing that the handguns that Lanza used were "high powered" 9 mm and 10 mm. 9 mm is not considered by anyone in th gun community to be a high powered round. There is actually much disdain about its ability to stop intruders. Would I like to get shot with it? No, but that does not change the fact that it is not a "high powered" cartridge. The 10 mm is considered to be a medium powered cartridge, but is so expensive to use, most people don't use it and prefer to go with the .40 S+W or .45 ACP.

Please educate yourselves on what is being said. Your politicians are using the horrible events to further their agendas. Feinstein herself had a concealed carry permit years ago. Why does she want to take this ability away from you?

Finally, over the years I've met 3 people, not in the community, who possessed illegal weapons. These people lived in poor areas and were afraid for their safety. If they wouldn't give up their weapons, or license them when it was easy to do so, what makes you think they would do it when it becomes even more difficult. These were otherwise law-abiding people. Given that, what do you think the criminals are going to do with their weapons? They will NEVER give them up.

Posted by Dee
a resident of San Ramon
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Thank you, Maverick, for informing those who didn't see Diane Feinstein's many TV photo ops speaking out for gun control.... while she was "packin' heat" as Mayor of San Francisco. Does she still own her firearms? We will NEVER know.

This climb-on-board shameful grandstanding regarding gun control is more two-faced politicking. A shameful diversion from what is and is not going on in Washington on the behalf of the electorate.

We did not vote the bums out. Most career politicians kept their well paid(and even better life-time benefits, not to mention health care and retirement that is different from ours....) jobs after the election. Until politicians are held to the same standards as the people they were elected to serve, they are not to be trusted with our money, our health, or our choice to own firearms.

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:28 pm

How and why do we believe that having an abundance of firearms in an amongst a relatively confined public space such as a school hallway in the hands of everyday Joes and Janes when expected to participate in a gun battle would be a good thing? Save for those individuals who are in some form of law enforcement or the military, I believe that most concealed and carry permit holders are rarely to never trained in and routinely exposed to extremely chaotic and stressful tactical situations so as to ensure that they handled their weapon in a calculated and non-emotional manner.

It seems to me that we've forgotten our shared history. We live in the West. It has been just over hundred years since the last continental territory became a state (AZ, Feb 1912). It's been less than a hundred years since Pancho Villa and his gang raided Columbus, NM and then was chased by General Pershing during the Mexican Expedition. Twenty-five years or so earlier then this we had the Earps, the Clantons and the McLaurys shooting up old horse stables and themselves why they were at it. Ever been to the historical part of Deadwood, SD? Spent much time soaking in the history at the old Boot Hill Cemetery where Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane amongst many others are buried?

While I like many grew up with cowboy lore fed to me in heaving spoonfuls from my father, I, like many, have realized that this era while an important thread in the fabric of making this country would NOT whatsoever be desirable in modern society. Guns may be proper and highly prized in the home for some but they do not belong in public places let alone places of higher learning.

If you disagree with me - meet me half way. Do away with the concealed element and just simply do it the way it is is legal in a number of western states. Put it in a scabbard strapped to your leg, cowboy style with pearl handles and bandoleros optional, for everyone to admire and determine if they really want to be in a room or building with you.

Posted by Bill
a resident of Danville
on Dec 21, 2012 at 6:57 am

The discussion about guns and concealed carry seems to bring out a great deal of emotion and actual fear that this will lead to a decrease in some perceived personal freedoms. Why does the United Kingdom have such a low rate of gun related deaths?
Web Link
We lack the will to do the right thing and that is ban all guns that are designed to do anything other than to hunt with. Nancy Lanza's guns ended up doing what most "weapons for protection" do, and that is kill someone and not in the act of protecting herself!

Posted by Barry L
a resident of Danville
on Dec 21, 2012 at 10:53 am

Guns don't shoot people. People shoot people.And we all know we can't control people's thoughts and get in their heads. Wish we could, but that's the root of the problem!

Posted by Jake
a resident of Alamo
on Dec 21, 2012 at 10:52 pm

The problem with chasing the wrong solution is that it prevents the opportunity to investigate the cause(s) and arrive at the real and effective solution. The "Assault weapon" ban that lasted 10 years did not produce any positive results per studies by two impartial organizations and that is why it was allowed to expire. Prior to 60's there were very few restrictions on gun purchases; they could be mail ordered yet we did not have the type of mass shootings that we are experiencing. In addition to prudent rules about gun safety and personal accountability, the mental illness and the effect of drugs must be included in any solutions if we are serious about this.

Posted by Sally
a resident of Danville
on Dec 22, 2012 at 8:13 am

"Why does the United Kingdom have such a low rate of gun related deaths?"

Exactly, Bill. And not just the UK. Compare the US to any developed country. Yet those countries have the other things we blame...violent video games, movies, mental illness, drugs.....

The only difference is their lack of an armed populace.

I haven't seen any "facts" from the gun rights folks that trump these simple facts. And I also don't buy the argument that it's too late now that the guns are out there. Australia has done a good job enacting gun control and made use of buyback programs and it's made a difference.

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Dec 22, 2012 at 10:27 pm


Your statement about modest to negligible firearms regulation prior to the 1960s is not accurate. The National Firearms Act (NFA) of 1934 was the first sweeping act of regulation in the US which came in as Prohibition was repealed. While it is true that one could mail order a double-barrel shotgun and similar sportsman firearms through a Sears or Montgomery Ward catalog and the like via mail, the NFA made it a crime, with limited exception, to have and possess a submachine gun (e.g. Tommy gun, etc.), a short-barreled shotgun (i.e. sawed-off), silencers and destructive devices such as grenades, mustard gas, explosive missiles, etc.

In addition, I presume that you realize that prior to Columbine in '99, as I recall, Charles Whitman in '66, standing on the University Tower at the University of Texas in Austin, committed the nation's worst single event mass-murder by a single assailant using the favored repeating rifle of the day.

I am in full agreement that a solution to this grave issue is not accomplished by gun control alone. Rather control of those likely to commit this these terrible acts of violence before they act is critical whether by early outreach, mandatory counseling, medication and/or incarceration will need to be the leading edge of our societal solution.

Posted by Reasonable Neighbor
a resident of Danville
on Dec 26, 2012 at 10:23 am

There are a lot of great comments made but, I'm going to keep this one short. ANY NUT who thinks we need Assult weapons and large ammo clips needs to have his head examined by the much needed mental health specialists good ol' Ronnie Regan cut in the 1980's.

Posted by Tea Party Forever
a resident of Danville
on Dec 26, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Guns don't kill people, people kill people. Forget about guns. Anybody wants to blow someone up with a hand grenade? They're widely available. How about obliterate your neighbors' homes all around you (and especially that one that had the Obama 2012 sign on its front lawn for months upon months) with a drone attack? Drones are widely available, and that's why the liberals who want an armed takeover of the state are against them. And bazookas? Widely available. So, this emphasis on assault rifles is just widely over-rated. Even if automatic assault rifles get banned, the crazies will still be able to easily get their hands on bazookas and hand grenades.

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