Brady campaign blog Monday, February 19, 2007 - 2:09 AM "The tragic proliferation of Sniper Rifles I would like to take a moment to comment on the proliferation of Sniper Rifles. Sniper Rifles are typically equipped with a high-powered scope, and every single one of them can blow through the body armor cops wear. They can even penetrate multiple police cars. Does the Second Amendment protect cop-killer Sniper Rifles? The NRA certainly thinks so, along with the powerful gun lobby that wants your children and your law enforcement officers to be at risk from these weapons of mass destruction. Some of these Sniper Rifles can even penetrate ballistic or armored glass, lightly armored vehicles, and armored limousines. Senator Ted Kennedy attempted to solve this with an important bill that would have banned armor piercing ammunition and protected lawful firearm commerce: "Another rifle caliber, the 30.30 caliber, was responsible for penetrating three officers' armor and killing them in 1993, 1996, and 2002. This ammunition is also capable of puncturing light-armored vehicles, ballistic or armored glass, armored limousines, even a 600-pound safe with 600 pounds of safe armor plating..... ..It is outrageous and unconscionable that such ammunition continues to be sold in the United States of America.." Should our elected officials live under the threat of reprisal on their lives from disgruntled constituents? The Gun Lobby seems to think so. We disagree. Sniper Rifles can be equipped with precision optics above even what the Military uses, allowing a sniper to deliver rounds within millimeters of accuracy - enabling them to engage targets at distances of well over one hundred meters. Is there a pressing need to be able to kill with accuracy at that distance? It is too far to justify as self defense. It is too far for hunting. It is only useful for those who wish to murder from afar. Large caliber Sniper Rifles such as the .50 Browning Machine Gun can derail freight cars, shoot down aircraft and helicopters, damage vital ground equipment such as power substations, fuel tanks, and air traffic control, and cause complete chaos. For more information on why large caliber machine-gun rounds must be banned, visit http://www.50caliberterror.com. A shipment of large caliber machine-gun round sniper rifles made by Steyr turned up in Iran, and are being used on our own soldiers, as the .50 bullets easily defeat their body armor, their up-armored humvees, and even APCs. Many forward thinking, progressive politicians such as Ted Kennedy, Chuck Schumer, Barbara Boxer, Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama have voted against Center-Fire Rifle Ammunition of types for Sniper Rifles, but due to the pressure and massive financial resources of the gun industry, the necessary steps to protect our homes and lives have not been attained. Sniper Rifles have been used by murderers and spree killers for years, with notable incidents such as the Beltway Snipers, the Clocktower Sniper, and more. ANY rifle configured and equipped as a sniper rifle has no sporting purpose especially as a hunting rifle. They are too big and heavy to take to the field. Designed for distance shooting, they are useless for the ranges at which game animals are normally shot, and when used on sporting sized game at range they often just wound the animal, inhumanely forcing it to die slowly while the would-be hunter tracks it to finish it off. Most Sniper Rifles fire atypically large cartridges and ultra high velocity ammunition that can travel much greater distances that standard ammunition. The danger imposed from missed shots and ricochetes from these specialty rounds is unreasonable. Most of these rifles carry multiple rounds, with either an automatic mechanism, or a quick toggle action to rapidly move another bullet into the breech, ready to fire into another victim. In most states, they are nearly unrestricted. Anyone over the age of 18 can buy one. If they can't pass a background check, they skirt the NCIS system by going to a gunshow, or finding a private sale in the newspaper. A murderer camped at a distance from a public gathering could quickly turn it into a massacre dwarfing anything we have seen before in the United States, if they had a Sniper Rifle. If they adopted hit and run tactics, entire portions of our country could be shut down. Sniper Rifles shoot a high powered bullet that is almost always fatal. They are designed for one thing- delivering powerful overkill with deadly precision. You don't need the kind of power and accuracy that can kill a man at five hundred yards for hunting rabbits or defending your house. We should also give commendations to France because many years ago they designated any firearm capable of shooting military ammunition as a military arm, illegal to posess without a special permit and unlawful to use for hunting. The 223, 308, 7mm mauser, 30-06, and 6.5x55 have no place in the hunting fields of France. Firearms shooting these calibers are military weapons only designed for killing PEOPLE and should be kept out of the hands of the general population. Because they have no hunting purpose, there is no reason for civilians to own them. Every state in the USA has hunting equipment rules that limit the caliber of firearm used to take game. They also limit the types of rifles, length, magazine capacity, etc. States should amend these hunting regulations to restrict the use of "sniper" rifles, specialty "sniper" cartridges, and "sniper" ammunition. Limits on weight, barrel length, bipods and tripods, thumbhole stocks and pistol grips, night vision type scopes, scopes of excessive magnification, super magnum and high velocity ammunition, and military slings should be imposed. They have no place in the hunting fields of America and hunting usage should not be used as an argument for civilians to own such firearms and weapons. There are more than ample hunting rifles, cartridges, and rounds of ammunition to choose from without them. Let us hope that in a safer, saner America, we will succeed in our efforts to restrict the deadly spread of long distance murder rifles."