I'm not going to bother going into VPC executive director Josh Sugarmann's Federal Firearms License--that has already been well covered (here, here, and here, just to name a few examples).
What I do want to talk about comes from a 2-decade-old article written by Sugarmann. The thrust of that article is that no "gun-control" legislation short of an outright ban on handguns is going to be enough.
Recognizing the eliminating a disease requiresprevention, not treatment, health professionals have been in the forefront of those calling for a national ban on handguns. In 1981, the Surgeon General's Select Panel for the Promotion of Child Health traced the "epidemic of deaths and injuries among children and youth' to handguns, and called for "nothing short of a total ban.' It is estimated that on average, one child dies from handgun wounds each day. Between 1961 and 1981, according to the American Association of Suicidology, the suicide rate for 15- to 24-year-olds increased 150 percent. The report linked the rise in murders and suicides among the young to the increased use of firearms--primarily handguns. In a 1985 report, the Surgeon General's Workshop on Violence and Public Health recommended "a complete and universal ban on the sale, manufacture, importation, and possession of handguns (except for authorized police and military personnel).'Sugarmann actually takes HCI (Handgun Control, Inc.--the name by which the Brady Campaign was once known) to task for calling for anything less than a ban.
Unfortunately, powerful as the NRA is, it hasreceived additional help from the leading handgun control group. Handgun Control Inc. (HCI) has helped the handgun lobby by setting up the perfect strawman for the NRA to shoot down. "Keep handguns out of the wrong hands,' HCI says. "By making it more difficult for criminals, drug addicts, etc., to get handguns, and by ensuring that law-abiding citizens know how to maintain their handguns, we can reduce handgun violence,' it promises. Like those in the NRA, HCI chairman Nelson T. "Pete' Shields "firmly believe(s) in the right of law-abiding citizens to possess handguns . . . for legitimate purposes.'What really got my attention, though, was this little rhetorical gem:
But the final solution lies in changing the wayhandguns and handgun violence are viewed by society."Final solution," Josh? And the citizen disarmament advocates call us paranoid for pointing out the striking similarities between the wording of the Gun Control Act of '68 and that of pre-WW II gun legislation in Germany?
More at Days of Our Trailers.
Update: I know I said I wasn't going to go into Sugarmann's FFL, but now that Ryan has uncovered the apparent illegality of that license, I just had to point it out. And I thought the VPC was opposed to "kitchen-table" Federal Firearms Licensees, "who operate[d] out of their homes or offices."
Update II: Look who stopped by!
What--no time for some "reasoned discourse," Josh?