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Pa. Gov. Rendell Urges Ban on Assault Weapons in Wake of Pittsburgh Cop Killings

April 16, 2009  | 

Surrounded by Pittsburgh officials such as Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and Police Chief Nate Harper, plus a dozen other mayors and state police officers, Gov. Ed Rendell urged Congress yesterday to re-enact a ban on the sale and possession of assault weapons, which criminals sometimes use to kill police.

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Comments (10)

Displaying 1 - 10 of 10

colonelbwalton @ 4/16/2009 10:09 AM

I have been in military law enforcement, civilian law enforcement and in private security for 42 years. I am very much pro law enforcement as long as law enforcement honors its oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States. I am 100% opposed to the banning of so called and misnamed assault weapons. The firearms act of 1934 banned the private ownership of fully automatic weapons without federal permission, i.e. licenses and very high fees . The weapons that the ignorant are calling "assault weapons" are semi-automatic rifles and shotguns that are no different in function than common hunting weapons. More than 8 million Americans own firearms, many of which would be made illegal because some politician is trying to advance his career at the expense of citizens who have committed no crime and pose no threat to anyone. Most of us take the Constitution at face value and believe the primary reason we have remained a free people is because we have been an armed people. I know that the private ownership of firearms saves innocent lives and secures the freedom of Americans. I will, in the strongest terms urge my elected representatives to oppose any gun registration or so called assault weapon ban. The right of the people to keep and bear arms in the defense of self, family, city, state and country is the birthright of every American. I still have many friends in various law enforcement agencies and the military. The majority of them take their oath to support and defend the Constitution as a sacred trust and duty with no expiration date as I do. The last assault weapon ban did nothing to keep weapons from criminal hands and neither will a new one.

diemkae @ 4/16/2009 10:15 AM

One wonders what part of an "assault weapon" ban Gov Rendell thinks would have prevented the perpetrators of the crimes he cites (or any criminal, for that matter), from obtaining same illegally? The Clinton SAWB was in effect for 10 years (1994-2004)and even its supporters now admit it did nothing to reduce violent crime.

love500 @ 4/16/2009 10:48 AM

Cops want to get cop killers and criminals off the streets! Maybe we should concentrate on that instead of worrying about what weapons law abiding citizens have in their possession. " When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns"

jabullock @ 4/16/2009 11:09 AM

I have been a police officer for close to 29 years. Anyone that believes more gun control legislation is going to stop the unecessary cop killings or any other kind of killing of innocent victims is a fool. Anyone who tries to tell you that the majority of police officers want more gun control legislation is either a liar or he/she does not know the facts. Check the annual survey from the National Association of Chiefs of Police and see what their survey says. You will see that most police officers are smart enough to know that it is not the weapon you blame, it is the person. The current laws that are on the books are sufficient for everyone to live by. There is no need for futher.

cbittick @ 4/16/2009 11:10 AM

Let me first offer my sympathies to the officers and families of these recent tragedies. Being a life long gun owner and a having a twenty-four year LE career following a four year hitch in the military I take exeption to the idea that a ban on any type weapon will make any problem we have with criminals any better. Hindering an honest citizens ability to purchase, possess and use firearms in a lawfull manner is an atrocity. We have more laws on the books now than we seem to be able to enforce and prosecute. No one should use a tragedy such as has happened in recent past for the purpose of passing a law that has been proven not to work is. Again, I sympathize and offer condolences for the suffering families but we should focus on the need at hand which is prosecuting to the fullest extent of the law those people that use firearms illegaly.

LPD5404 @ 4/16/2009 12:19 PM

As a police officer in PA, I find Rendell's antics hillarious. He is only doing this to make himself look good. Enforce the laws that are already on the books. Rendell does not nor has he ever spoken for the vast majority of police officers of this state. New gun laws will do NOTHING to stop the violence in Philly or any other city.

knight3218 @ 4/16/2009 1:17 PM

I don't need any limp wristed political hack saying that he wants to protect me, that's a big lie and it's just a Power Grab!!

Thor Odinson @ 4/16/2009 1:50 PM

Rendell needs to do the "right thing" and resign according to his own standards. I had a doper try to nail me with a shotgun he had modified (sawed off barrel and stock). He gets a cot and 3 squares now. Maybe I should have shot him--naw, he can stay "high" for life...however long he lasts. Now if I can just find some powder...and maybe see what the ICP survey showed (they oppose most civilian rights like CCW so I quit reading it) Thor

tgis81 @ 4/17/2009 6:55 PM

As a former Washington D.C. Metropolitan police officer and current Pennsylvania Police officer, I have a very strong standpoint on this issue. When I worked in D.C. (pre D.C. v Heller decision), we had some of the most strict gun laws in the country: No CCW, No pistol possession whatsoever, AND any shotguns or rifles had to be stored with a gun lock and/or disassembled in a locking container, etc... And what did that do for D.C.? NOTHING! I responded to shootings on every shift. I saw children 12 yrs old with handguns shooting at each other, as well as lying gasping for their last breath as we arrived. We recovered more guns, and had more gun related violence than most places in the country. Take that as an example of how restricting the law abiding citizens will result. The people who followed the law had no defense to the rampid burglaries and robberies that seemed to occur as much as any other crime, if not more. Rendell should be embarassed to make such misinformed statements... I myself am embarassed to say that Rendell is the Governor of the state in which I live. How could someone with such a position sleep at night knowing that his statements and decisions put so many law abiding citizens of his state in jeopardy?

To put things into perspective, if outlawing "assault weopans" would stop criminals from killing people, why don't we just outlaw murder... oh wait, that's already been done and it hasn't solved the problem.

fedupcop @ 4/20/2009 3:35 PM

I would first like to correct this article by giving the true facts of the amount of officers who were murdered in this city. It was not four in two years, we've lost four since may 3 of 2008! Now on to the Gov.'s so called "ban", It has been proven that this does not work, and if it passes again- it will be proven yet another time. The problem with Philadelphia is that the soft liberal judges let these criminals off. I have seen on more than one occasion convicted felons in possession of firearms, while in the commision of a crime, get probation as a sentence. There are many problems with this. 1) Probation is an awful joke in Philadelphia. 2) There is no threat or fear factor about probation(even violators are let go). I have seen this first-hand several times. The real problem is the ridiculous joke that this city calls judges! Guns are not the problem, the laughing stock of a judicial system is! I am a cop in Philly and I am an avid " Gun Guy" ( No, I am not a member of the NRA ), and the only cops that believe that gun control tactics work, are the one's that haven't been on the street in so long that they forget what it is like to do a cops job! Thank You Governor for wasting more time and tax money on crap that doesn't work. You were a joke as mayor, and, you're still a joke now! Thanks for nothing eddie.

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