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Assault Weapons Bias

Reported by Ellen - September 14, 2004 -

Major Garrett appeared on Fox News Live with Alan Colmes Monday night (10:06 pm ET) to brief Alan and his listeners on the expiration of the assault weapons ban. Unfortunately for us, Garrett's most important comments - that the assault weapons ban is a misnomer and of trivial importance - seemed to come straight from the RNC and/or NRA and did not include any opposing view.

Despite some healthy skepticism from Colmes, Garrett insisted that the assault weapons ban was a cosmetics matter that has "nothing to do with how the gun fires." An incredulous Colmes kept asking if there weren't ANY other differences. "Not that I'm aware of," Garrett responded.

Had Garrett bothered to look, he could easily have found what Colmes found in less than 10 minutes: that the point is at least debatable. According to Sarah Brady's website,

"Opponents of the ban argue that such weapons only "look scary." However, because they were designed for military purposes, assault weapons are equipped with combat hardware, such as silencers, folding stocks and bayonets, which are not found on sporting guns. Assault weapons are also designed for rapid-fire and many come equipped with large ammunition magazines allowing 50 more bullets to be fired without reloading. So there is a good reason why these features on high-powered weapons should frighten the public."

You can read more about the Brady view of the increased deadliness of these "cosmetic features" that Garrett either didn't know about or had dismissed without reporting on.