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article imageA military veteran's view on proposed gun restrictions Special

By Greta McClain     Jan 22, 2013 in Politics
In the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting, calls for stricter guns laws have echoed throughout the United States, prompting the President to announce his plan to curb gun violence.
Last week, President Obama signed 27 Executive Orders aimed at reducing gun violence. He also announced plans to push for regulations that would require Congressional approval. Those plans include reinstating the assault weapon ban, restoring the 10-round limit on ammunition magazines, increasing the availability of mental health services and requiring background checks for all gun sales.
As reported by Digital Journal, the President said military-style assault weapons that are "designed for theater of war have no place in a movie theater."
Digital Journal wanted to get the opinion of someone who is not only a war veteran, but who is also a gun owner and advocate.
I spoke with a former Marine who was deployed in Iraq for two tours of duty. He is a gun owner and a strong supporter of the Second Amendment. He was asked specifically what he thought about of the President's assault weapon and high capacity magazine proposals.
Digital Journal: How do you feel about the President's views on banning military-style assault weapons and limiting high-capacity magazines?
C.C.: Assault weapons were invented for military use. There is no reason why an everyday citizen needs an assault weapon. Long before the school shooting in Connecticut, I have said we should go back to the assault weapon ban that was in place several years ago. I can see where law enforcement can benefit from carrying assault weapons, knowing what they can face sometimes, but saying anyone can own one is crazy. Who needs an assault weapon to protect their home or go hunting?
I am not a big hunter, but I know what those rifles can do, even when not fully automatic. I would think if you are an avid hunter you would like to have the animal pretty much intact.
If you are such a bad shot you feel you need an assault rifle with 100 rounds to keep your family safe, your best bet would be to get a shotgun loaded with buckshot. You can pretty much be a horrible shot and still hit the target that way.
Digital Journal: So you would support a ban on assault style weapons?
C.C.: Absolutely. I am a Marine, not active duty anymore, but once a Marine, always a Marine. Even as a Marine I don't own an assault weapon or high capacity magazines. There is no need for me to have them unless I am on patrol in the desert and know there is a possibility of getting into a firefight.
Digital Journal: I take it you would also support a ban on high capacity magazines. Am I correct in that assumption?
C.C.: As far as high capacity magazines, there is no need for anyone to own one if you aren't in the military or a police officer. If you are too lazy to reload your gun at the firing range, then you are probably too lazy to learn how to properly handle a weapon in the first place. If you think you need that many rounds to stop a burglar, well, that leads me back to my shotgun comment. If you can't hit whatever animal you are hunting with the first two or three rounds, you're out of luck anyway because it has long since run off.
Digital Journal: So can I safely assume you have no problem with stricter gun regulations?
C.C.: I have no problem with regulations on assault weapons and high capacity magazines. Now, if you tell me that I can't have my 9mm or my .45 caliber, my rifle or my shotguns, then we will have a problem. The Second Amendment protects our right to bear arms and I agree with that 100 percent. But it is not unreasonable to have common sense restrictions on the types of arms civilians can own. Hand grenades and grenade launchers are considered small arms, but do you think anyone other than the military should have them? Of course not, we have restrictions on them and I think we should have restrictions on assault weapons too.
Digital Journal: You say that you are a strong supporter of the Second Amendment. Are you a member of the NRA?
C.C.: Yes, I am a member of the NRA and I have been since I was 18-years-old. My father is a career Army man and he is a member of the NRA too. But just because I am an NRA member and supporter of our right to bear arms does not mean I agree with everything the NRA says. Lately the NRA, or at least their vocal leadership, have lost every shred of common sense they ever had. We have got to start using common sense. Military style weapons and magazines belong in the hands of trained military personnel, not every Joe Blow that thinks he needs one to be cool and tough. But the NRA and some other pro-gun groups are trying to claim the 2nd Amendment protects our rights to own any type of arm. If that's the case, why can't granny down the street have a grenade launcher? Heck, they talk about nuclear arms. If it's an arm, can I keep a couple stockpiled in my garage? Common sense people, common sense.
More about Gun control, Gun restrictions, Gun laws, Assault weapons, assault weapons ban
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