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Weapons

Police Readers Oppose Assault Weapon Ban

Survey respondents say weapons ban would not make schools safer.

December 20, 2012  |  by - Also by this author

Photo: Kim Pham
Photo: Kim Pham

In the wake of last Friday's Newtown, Conn., school massacre, President Obama and numerous senators and representatives are calling for stricter gun control laws. One specific measure that has strong approval among Democrats and even some Republicans is a measure to reinstate the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994, which expired in 2004.

Proponents of reinstating the Assault Weapons Ban believe it will take these "military-style" firearms out of the hands of active shooters, including school shooters, and make children safer. They say that law enforcement officers support the ban.

They've been speaking with some officers, but they are not speaking with the overwhelming majority of Police Magazine/PoliceMag.com readers.

Earlier this week, the editors of Police Magazine/PoliceMag.com sent a survey to 5,000 of our readers chosen randomly. A total of 717 readers responded to the poll. Of this number, 602 self-identified as law enforcement officers and were allowed to answer the Assault Weapon survey questions. Out of these 602, 590 chose to answer the question.

A full 84% of those officers who chose to answer the question (498) said that restricting the sale of "assault weapons" would not reduce the number of mass murder incidents such as the Sandy Hook school shooting. Only 3% of these officers, 20 in total, had changed their mind about "assault weapon" access because of the Newtown massacre.

The poll was conducted over a 24-hour period from Tuesday to Wednesday of this week.

Related:

Sen. Feinstein Promises New Assault Weapons Ban

Tags: Assault Weapons Ban, School Shootings, Active Shooters, Sandy Hook School Shooting, Gun Control Advocacy


Comments (37)

Displaying 1 - 37 of 37

Chuck Haggard @ 12/20/2012 2:32 PM

That would be because cops, unlike politians, are not out of touch with reality.

Rick @ 12/20/2012 3:21 PM

Pass National Reciprocity of CCW so armed citizens can protect themselves and other innocent civilians. Boxer's idea of using national guard soldiers is idiotic, especially since she and Feinstein have CCW permits.

Bob @ 12/20/2012 3:55 PM

The problem is in the definition of "assault weapon". I would suggest that you read the following article in the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323723104578185271857424036.html

JOHN @ 12/20/2012 4:10 PM

three types of people
1- people who don't own guns
2-law abiding citizens who own guns
3- Criminals who have stolen guns
goverment doesn't want mess with criminals,To easy to get law abiding citizens

David @ 12/20/2012 5:36 PM

Criminals don't get their guns the legal way and could still get any style of gun to include full auto, with or with out the assault weapon ban. As a police officer, we were still getting criminals on the streets with assault weapons loaded with high cap mags, even though the ban was in effect. This will only affect the law abiding citizens.

Dave @ 12/20/2012 5:38 PM

If assault weopons are killing people then why dont we put a ban on all the vehicles the drunk people used to kill others???

DaveSAM5525G @ 12/20/2012 6:12 PM

The articles and stories coming from this Sandy hood keep changing so I think it would be prudent until one story is passed!
Three Types of compliance:
1. Those who follow the rules
2. Those who never follow the rules and don't care about them or does it impact them(Criminals).
3. Those who sit on the fence in jump into whatever field of play is winning at the time-these are the ones that scare me the most the other two are defined: Chameleon! Nevertheless, a chameleon on a branch is often impossible to spot. Chameleons stalking their prey client up so slowly through the trees that often they seem to be barely moving at all. Their feet are curiously jointed so that three close point one way and to the other, allowing them to encircle the twigs they walk on in a tight grip. And for extra grip and balance, they use their tails as a fifth limb.

Ima Leprechaun @ 12/20/2012 7:17 PM

What a load of baloney. Assault weapons have no legal use, they are made for one thing only, to kill people and that's it. Get rid of assault weapons entirely like in the ban before King George lifted it. Make the purchasing, manufacturing and sale or use of all ammunition illegal except for police and the military. There is already plenty of ammo out there to start a war with which this law would have no effect on. The US Constitution says that the only group that has a right to bear arms is the state militia (National Guard). There are no individual right's to bear arms in the US Constitution. So let the gun nuts keep their guns because when interviewed they always say they never fire them they only buy them to look at and we have a win-win situation by restricting ammunition. Anyone that thinks hunters use a full auto AR-15 to hunt ducks with is insane. The answer is very easy, regulate the ammunition and if someone has a need to hunt for food then they may apply for a restricted permit to allow for ammo to be issued for that purpose and any extra ammo is then turned back in. Deer hunters are trophy hunters and rarely use the meat. With so many Deer killed by cars there is already plenty of meat available if that was truly what was wanted. Impulse shooters would have to fnd other avenues to kill people. Those that want to arm teachers are just plain insane. Guns in school will result in more gun fatalities due to curiousity or accidental deaths due to improper securing of the weapons. These politicians in favor of arming teachers need to be recalled and placed on a thorazine drip in a mental institution. I saw teachers being trained in a small Texas town and the guns that were using had about a ten foot effective range which by the time they found it they would be dead and giving another gun to the shooter to use. We can reduce the problems but we are not going to stop them completely but we can at east try.+

Cpl Punishment @ 12/20/2012 8:34 PM

Ugh, there is no such thing as an "assault weapon". There is an "assault rifle", which by the government's own definition is capable of select fire or automatic fire. As a civvie, I cannot own one. I can get an AR-15 that cosmetically looks like the military counterpart, but it functions and cycles ammunition in much the same manner as a 10-22 boy scout rifle does. But let's not let facts get in the way of emotional rhetoric now.... If I take a plastic fork and shove it into my neighbor is that an assault fork, or does it have to have a flat black finish?
The gun laws in CT are already restrictive, and they worked. But when a criminal is intent on breaking a law and stealing property to commit a crime then what? Because unless you remove every gun and gun manufacturer from planet Earth it won't happen. Good luck with that. National CCW reciprocity is a must, because CCW holders do save lives. I spent many years in the military and I respect the American police officer, but they aren't everywhere at once. I can't afford personal security like Michael Bloomberg.

Ron @ 12/20/2012 8:35 PM

Ima Leprechaun must be a troll or an ignorant fool. Only an ignorant fool would even suggest the use of anything but a shot gun for duck hunting. Obviously, you know nothing about duck hunting. Every deer hunter I have ever known hunts for the MEAT, not the trophy. Obviously, you know nothing about deer hunting. P.S. road kill rots real fast, moron. “There are no individual rights to bear arms in the US Constitution.” You’re right; it’s in the BILL OF RIGHTS. Try reading it. Obviously, you know nothing about our civil rights either. “Those that want to arm teachers are just plain insane.” Really? Israel has for years and they have had no problems. Obviously, you know nothing about armed teachers either. “I saw teachers being trained in a small Texas town and the guns that were using had about a ten foot effective range which by the time they found it they would be dead and giving another gun to the shooter to use.” You obviously know nothing about guns either. Even a 22 caliber has an effective range well beyond 10 feet. Perhaps they were TRAINING with BB-guns, but you obviously wouldn’t know the difference. Until you have some productive suggestions for this problem, go crawl back under your rock.

Travis @ 12/20/2012 8:40 PM

Usually I try to leave my comments better left unsaid. But obviously the guy two spots above me is a communist and I can't believe you would say such an empty headed thing. Ban ammunition? Permits to ONLY hunt for food?! You sir, need to move back to North Korea where your ideology would be better received. We live in America! And the militia you refer to in the 2nd Amendment does not mean any government organization run by the president. It means the body if the people of the United States to protect ourselves FROM the government if it were to try and put us in a totalitarian state. That which it is unfortunately trying to do.

john law @ 12/20/2012 10:56 PM

an assault weapons ban makes about as much sense as banning hammers from use by carpenters...hammers can kill people too...the real issue here is mental health and gun use...its quite simple really...more stringent background checks MANDATORY NATIONWIDE TO INCLUDE ANY/ALL WHO COULD GAIN ACCESS TO THE WEAPONS...Conneticut was a tragedy no doubt,,,a sick twisted horrible tragedy...BUT SO ARE ALL THE OTHER SCHOOL SHOOTINGS...15 THAT ARE MEDIA WORTHY SINCE 1997....THATS AN AVERAGE OF 1 A YEAR...HARDLY AN EPIDEMIC...look at the common denominator in all except columbine..lone despondent male shooters with either an axe to grind or mental health issues or both...PREVENTABLE??? HARDLY....ACCESS TO WEAPONS OF ANY KIND WILL ALWAYS BE THAT PERSONS INTENT IF THEY PLAN ON DOING CARNAGE....WHATS NEXT YOU CAN ONLY CARRY MUSKETS AND SINGLE SHOT PISTOLS? IF YOU CREATE A BAN IT OPENS THE DOOR FOR ALL THE REST TO BE BANNED....

Cattledog @ 12/20/2012 11:52 PM

Ima Leprechaun definitely is a troll no body is that dumb, that can read or write. Webster tells us that "ignorance" is a lack of knowledge, in Ima Leprechaun's statement he shows us that if someone is so bitter and against learning the truth its a shame his mother didn't believe in abortion. Today the Communist Chinese government, via its state-run media front Xinhua, has called for Americans to be disarmed, arguing that the Sandy Hook school massacre demands “no delay for U.S. gun control. Also..The article adds that Barack Obama should begin “to make preparation for a protracted war,” with a massive political cost if he wants to eviscerate the second amendment. We have much bigger problems as a nation than to consider even a peep from the likes of Ima Leprechaun.

Jim @ 12/21/2012 6:15 AM

So is no one else going to ask what the heck is up with DaveSAM5525G? Forget about Ima Leprechaun, he's a tool just looking for a reaction, don't give him the satisfaction.

But what the hell Dave? Is this a nature documentary or what?

Charles Armstead @ 12/21/2012 6:48 AM

Does Lexington and Concord ring a bell? The beginnings of American Independence began when the Governor of Massachusetts ordered British troops to seize the powder and ball stores from the people in these towns. History may well be repeating itself.

Patrick Henry @ 12/21/2012 7:06 AM

Hey Ima leprechaun can you recommend a good gunsmith. I have a whole bunch of those 'assault weapons' and mine have never killed anybody! They must be broke. A lot of my friends have them too! but theirs don't work right either- never kilt anyone. nope, nobody!

Frank Da Crank @ 12/21/2012 7:31 AM

Be careful when you suggest more strict background check. Average people don't have the ability to do this, thus making it impossible to do a legal private sale or purchase or trade. Words mean things.

Yoda @ 12/21/2012 9:08 AM

Kudos POLICE - Superior site.

One only needs to look South of the Border to see the consequences of one of the strictest gun laws in the wide world. 6,000+ murders.

Right on POLICE - WRITE ON!

"Government Grabbing Your Guns."

http://www.magnifiedview.com

gary @ 12/21/2012 9:32 AM

The only "police" I know of who support access to firearms are administrators who do so to appease their political masters or police organizations whose leadership are paid by foundations to espouse specified party lines. The rank and file know better. Unfortunately, no one listens to the rank and file.

John @ 12/21/2012 10:19 AM

Ima Leprechaun: personally I think you are just a little weasel who gets off on getting a rise out of P.M. readers. How can anyone be that ignorant about our history, Bill of Rights, firearms and hunting?

The U.S. Constitution says the only group that has a right to bear arms is the state militia (National Guard).

1) There was no National Guard when the Bill of Rights was written.
2) Minutemen kept their firearms at home.

Anyone that thinks hunters use a full auto AR-15 to hunt ducks is insane.

1) AR-15 rifles are not full auto.
2) Shotguns (not rifles) are used to hunt ducks.
3) The Bill of Rights is not about duck hunting.

Not a LEO @ 12/21/2012 11:34 AM

Here is the million dollar question:

How many LEO's are going to stand up against the UN gun grabbers when the time comes?

Section III, Paragraphs 7 and 8 of the Programme of Action of the ATT mandates that if a member state cannot get rid of privately owned small arms legislatively, then the control of “customs, police, intelligence, and arms control” will be placed under the power of a board of UN bureaucrats operating out of the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs. (Located in NY)

This provision includes the deployment of UN peacekeeping forces in OUR COUNTRY to seize and destroy “weapon stockpiles" that are owned by private citizens.

Again, the question is: How many of you LEO's are going to stand up to the UN when they come into your house to assume control of your operations?

Godspeed

Mike Moats @ 12/21/2012 12:09 PM

Ima Leprechaun: you're and idiot!!!!! Supreme Court ha decided that the right to bear arms IS AN INDIVIDUAL RIGHT! It doesn't give us the right to hunt, that's a privilege given by the states and feds, like driving a car. They regulate seasons, game and the weapons that can be used because if I had the "right" to hunt I could hunt ducks with an "assault rifle" if I chose to and the State wouldn't own wild game. Ima Leprechaun is the reason the rest of us have to make our voices heard by our legislatures! Remind they what happened to legislatures that supported the last failed "assault weapons" ban!

ARIZONA @ 12/21/2012 12:43 PM

I would ask anyone who thinks gun owners are criminals read the DICK ACT of 1902,IT forbids any and all gun laws,it can't ever be repealed as long as america exists,NOW,how many of you "GOOD" american cops been breaking the law,cause if you have ever taken a weapon from anyone "YOUR THE CRIMINAL"....and should be charged with TREASON,and sentenced to life in prison for it............

Hunter*2020 @ 12/21/2012 2:32 PM

JUST A TRUE TRAGEDY!!!!!!! and EVERYONE apparently has to make Connecticut a political forum. What a sad statement on our already dysfunctional society. I do support the second but...........

Richard @ 12/21/2012 3:12 PM

Are country is going to hell. sad thing is they have managed to stripped god out of the the schools now they want to take a right to bear certain arms wow what the hell are we suppose to defend ourselves with harsh fxxxxxx language take this word of advice guns dont kill people stupid ass people kill people take our guns away will only increase violence more people will own guns then than know.......take the prohibition act on alcohol well I guess it will keep our cops busy

JARHDMF @ 12/21/2012 5:08 PM

Ima Leprechaun,

The second Amendment was NEVER about hunting or Sporting use. It was to acknowledge the individual God-Given right to own military style firearms to defend against abuses of the State, invasion, and personal crime in that order according to the clearly written intent of the founding fathers.

Our courts were also as clear. US vs. Miller 1939. The US Supreme Court Ruled a "sawed off shotgun" (Bll under 18 arbitrary inches) "holds no militia purpose."

1) Weapons are to be of MILITARY USE,

2) The Original "Unorganized Militia" of 1792 Act is the Individual, not the State or National Guard. That is the Organized Militia under a congressional Act of 1917 and 10 USC 13 subsec.311.

http://uscode.house.gov/download/pls/10C13.txt

THe Organized Militia is considered the Reserves, National Guard and Coast Guard. This was the Act of 1917 and the Amendment of 10 USC 311. It is dependant on the Militia Act of 1792.

I will consider a weapons ban of any nature by the Federak Government a usurpation. Especially by Executive order or Treaty (which cannot circumvent the Constitution). It is an act of war against the American people and an Act of Treason an will be responded to as such.

JARHDMF, Semper Fidelis
Wpns 2/1

DaveSAM5525G @ 12/21/2012 5:29 PM

Jim-My old call sign...and no not nature but if you know Chameleon do you will understand! This was one of those between the lines messages sorry I confused you I be more direct next time!

Nicki @ 12/21/2012 10:24 PM

agenda 21 calls for a depopulation and this is another stepping stone to advance their agenda. the Geo-engineering weather manipulation experiments are taking palce right here in Los Angeles everyday and we ar e witnessing airplanes spraying the sky with Chem Trails of aluminum and other chemicals that cause cancer, dementia and mind control . Today
Friday the 20th of Dec it looked like Pearl Harbor over the San Fernando Harbor at 4:30 The grid of the chem trails was so low, it was incredible and the freeway was packed, the sun was reflecting the psychedelic rays of the chemicals and people were just driving home and nobody was paying attention to what was going on overhead i pushed bck my sunroof and just kept shooting photos it is sickening what the are getting away with...we are doomed and these assholes that we elect are spraying us like bugs...How do we stop these destruction...how do we wake up a population that is being put to sleep through every breath they take...

practitioner of enforceme @ 12/23/2012 8:02 AM

What many don’t realize is that many LE agencies make officers buy their own firearms. Many LE agencies don’t have the funds to buy firearms for their officers. An “assault weapons” ban, effects law enforcement officers. It takes away the ability for an individual officer to purchases tools of the job, it closes down many training opportunities for that officer, it potentially puts an officer at risk the next time the pro gun control individuals, call 911. ‘You’ in essence took away the LE officers ability to protect them and you!

SharpShtik @ 12/25/2012 12:00 AM

Democrats hate and relentlessly try to take or interfere with four constitutionally protected individual rights we have - private property, keeping and bearing arms, free speech and freedom of association - because our exercise of these rights interferes with the growth of their Democrat-controlled government industry designed to control, redistribute and suppress.
Violent crime in America is high because voting and crime statistics prove Democrats, and primarily minority Democrats, commit nearly all violent crime. Crime by mentally defective people is a separate issue. For them, mental defects, violent virtual games and real weapons can be a deadly cocktail. However, we do not imprison the individual freedom of hundreds of millions of people based on crimes by mentally defective people or generic criminals who, by definition, cannot or will not follow laws to begin with. What we need is individual quality control, not the quantity control Democrats want.

Robert McNamara @ 12/25/2012 11:22 AM

Hello
Merry Christmas and I wish you a healthy New Year.
A lot has been happening in the aftermath of the tragic events in Sandy Hook. There is lightly to be a change in the Laws surrounding guns. Our technology could have helped prevent the massacre on two fronts. We have received some attention in the media and some TV.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/20/us-usa-shooting-smartguns-idUSBRE8BJ18E20121220
http://www.wtsp.com/news/reporter/article/288317/79/Guns-could-be-safer-but-you-cant-get-them

Firstly, if Mrs Lanza had TriggerSmart installed in her guns then Adam could not have fired the guns without her authorization RFID tag.
Secondly, if TriggerSmart Wide Area control was installed at the school then any TriggerSmart guns could have been disabled at point of entry to safe zone.
It is my intention to licence our technology free to every school and University in the USA free of charge.
Since we last spoke we have been GRANTED a patent in the USA and I have developed a prototype demo available on youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcIpmAaFjGE

Have you any ideas how I should bring our Company to the attention of the Biden Commission set up by President Obama to report on ways of preventing gun violence in the USA? Obviously I would like to have TriggerSmart technology considered for inclusion in any new laws or policies.
I am just back from South Africa where they want to use our technology to prevent the gun violence there and I have had some enquiries from KSA and Egypt, UK and Norway where there were over 70 killed in a massacre last year.

I hope you give this some thought and I hear from you soon. This is a now or nerver time for TriggerSmart as the momentum is there in the USA and Sandy Hook will prove to be a "game changer".
Regards,
Robert

Jes @ 12/26/2012 8:01 PM

@Robert McNamara Were you aware that all game companies (PC, XBOX & PS3) put copy protection on thier CD's and DVD's to prevent game piracy but this is mostly a waste of time since a day after the release of a new game the copy protection has been cracked and the games are freely downloaded by million on the internet. In the same vein, I give your TriggerSmart technology a week before it's cracked and anyone can easily bypass it on any gun. Also, in Newtown, he killed his mother and would have easily gained access to her "authorization RFID tag" as you call it.

Ed Fanning @ 12/29/2012 12:07 PM

It worked in Australia, it can work here. A retroactive ban on assault weapons was instituted in Australia after a 1996 mass shooting that killed 35 people in a place eerily named New Town. Both killers in Newton, CT and New Town, Australia used an AR-15.

Since the retroactive ban, Australia has not experienced a mass shooting. Citizens were required to turn in their assault weapons and 650,000 weapons were taken off the streets. The law did not simply stop the sale of new weapons.

New legislation being proposed by U.S. Senator Diane Feinstein stops far short of addressing the problem, as millions of these weapons would remain legal for those who currently possess them. Feinstein has stated her legislation will not be retroactive.
http://www.democracynow.org/2012/12/18/new_town_to_newtown_how_96

Patriot @ 12/30/2012 9:14 AM

First off since the gun ban in Australia, violent crime has increased. Every weapon is an assault weapon. At the signing of the constitution the black powder rifle was the "assault rifle" that King George tried to ban. You could say there is no use for cars that go over 60mph or speakers that are louder than our ears can tolorate. It's not about hunting although many hunters use SEMI auto not FULL auto to hunt. If you don't know the difference then you are clueless and don't know what you are talking about. Isreali teachers are armed and have no school shootings. Not only do guns kill but they save lives too. Maybe idiot Leprechaun only wants the crimnals armed. RETARD

Art Washut @ 1/14/2013 2:13 PM

The bigger question is whether or not cops will put their jobs on the line rather than enforce what they believe to be an unconstitutional gun law? I suspect that when push comes to shove, even cops who oppose the law, will enforce it rather than risk being fired. Am I wrong?

Julie @ 1/19/2013 6:50 PM

What Robert McNamara, the founder of TriggerSmart who has commented above, is that his technology requires the use of a device to be worn as a ring or a bracelet - OR IMPLANTED INTO THE HAND (as illustrated in his video on Youtube). If this technology takes off, and right now it is being recommended by Biden and Holder, no-one is going to think that wearing a ring to activate a gun is a 'safe' way to do it - fingers would be chopped off, rings etc lost or stolen or forgotten. Implants for guns is but one of many applications for an implanted chip. McNamara also fails to mention that his technology enables Wide Area Control, ie remote disabling of the gun such as in 'safe zones'. The new technology will simply lead to a whole new set of problems; ones which are harder to control.

Bobby Kearan @ 9/24/2013 8:17 AM

I've got a serious question that I would like an educated, experienced answer to. Or, a firing range test that I'm interested in the results of.
Using the same basic weapon ( say a Mini-14 ), have one with a standard, wood, one-piece stock and one with a collapsible stock with a pistol grip. (Using the Mini-14, a Ranch model and a Tactical model, both off-the-shelf)
Fire 5 rounds as fast as possible with each, time speed and accuracy of both rifles.
Fire 20 rounds as fast as possible with each, time speed and accuracy of both rifles.
Fire 5 rounds as accurately as possible, time speed and accuracy of both rifles.

1. Would you expect a difference in the two rifles performance?
2. Would you expect a difference in speed and/or accuracy due to the stock/grip?
3. What was the actual experience regarding performance and the stock/grip?

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