NSSF Spokesman Opens Mouth..Inserts Foot..the Inevitable Result


Jeff White
November 29, 2004, 04:26 PM
"We have met the enemy and it is us".....Pogo

The New York TImes printed this:
Rare Weapon to Hunt Deer
New York Times
Published: November 23, 2004

The rifle that killed five Wisconsin hunters and wounded three more on Sunday was an SKS 7.62-millimeter semiautomatic assault weapon not normally used in hunting animals.

"This is not a gun you go deer hunting with," said Lawrence Keane, senior vice president and general counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the gun industry trade association.

The reason the SKS is not used by hunters, Mr. Keane said, is that it is designed for combat soldiers and is therefore underpowered for killing an animal like a deer with a single shot, the goal of good hunters.

"The ethics of hunting are you don't want the animal to suffer needlessly," Mr. Keane said.

Mr. Keane said he suspected that the man accused of the Wisconsin killings was not a trained hunter, since with the SKS he was carrying, he would have had to shoot a deer several times to kill it.

The SKS is a precursor of the AK-47 assault rifle. Though it has a longer barrel, it otherwise looks much like the AK-47. It has become popular in the United States among gun collectors, target shooters and some criminals, because it sells for less than $200, or more than $100 less than an AK-47, said Kristen Rand, legislative director of the Violence Policy Center, a gun control group.
By executive order, President Bill Clinton barred the importing of Chinese- and Russian-made SKS rifles. But the Bush administration, Ms. Rand said, has specifically authorized the importing of SKS's from Yugoslavia and Albania.

It is not known where the SKS used in the Wisconsin shootings was manufactured.

Note the comments by Lawrence Keane. So we have the National Shooting Sports Foundation making inane statements about the SKS and the suitability of the 7.62x39 round for deer hunting. And the inevitable result is the rest of the media picks up on this and we get the statement as justification for a new ban.

"ASSAULT WEAPONS: The deer hunter

IT HAS BEEN LITTLE MORE THAN THREE MONTHS since Congress caved in to the National Rifle Association and refused to extend the federal ban on the sale of military-style assault weapons. This issue takes on added urgency with the incident last week in Wisconsin. There, a deer hunter killed six people and wounded two others after he was spotted on private land and was asked to leave. He claims he was defending himself when he fired at the victims with an SKS 7.62 mm semiautomatic assault rifle.

The SKS is of little value to good hunters but is popular with collectors and criminals. Best-suited for combat, the gun lacks the power to meet an ethical hunter's goal of killing a deer with a single shot. Former President Bill Clinton had barred the importation of SKS rifles from China and Russia, but the Bush administration specifically authorized their importation from Yugoslavia and Albania, according to The New York Times. It's unclear where the SKS used in the Wisconsin shootings was made, but the real issue is the disturbing response of gun manufacturers to the 10-year ban.

In some instances, the gun industry made cosmetic changes to some of its assault weapons in order to circumvent the law. Some assault weapons have not been banned because they supposedly are used for hunting. The SKS should be banned in light of comments by Lawrence Keane, an official of the National Shooting Sports Foundation. He told the Times that the SKS wasn't normally used in hunting animals. Not only was this assault weapon used in the Wisconsin shootings; it was used to kill three Birmingham, Ala., police officers in June. Congress needs to revisit the gun issue and decide which assault weapons and copycats should be banned.

Mr. Bush, who had said he would renew the ban on assault weapons, evaded responsibility last summer by claiming he was waiting for Congress to act, knowing all along that House Majority Leader Tom DeLay wasn't about to allow the measure to come to a vote. The president needs to tell Congress to get serious about renewing the ban.

Congress also must face up to a Justice Department report that fewer than 5 percent of the 104,000 American gun dealers are checked annually to make sure they are complying with firearms laws. Congress has yet to match its rhetoric about heightened concern about terrorism by appropriating money to check dealers and track assault weapons. The president and congressional leaders could take an even more significant step toward making our nation safer by banning these weapons. Again.

So my question is; Does the NSSF intend to further divide the gun owning public? Are they that stupid that they don't believe that this will feed into the entire sporting purposes justification for a ban? Or, are they seeking to replay what I've heard happened in 1968 and use this as a way to cut imports and foreign competition?


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Harry Tuttle
November 29, 2004, 04:47 PM
i thought the serial number showed that the rifle was a saiga "hunter" kalashnikov.

November 29, 2004, 04:58 PM
Almost everything sold in this country that fires the 7.62 commie rounds (which, last I heard were .30-30 equivalents) is either a Yugo mil-surp or some flavor of an AK. Why would the industry trade group like those guns?

Every SKS sale is one lost to "hunting" rifle manufacturers and the NSSF is a trade group front who probably doesn't count IZMASH or Arsenal of Bulgaria among their members.

So the comments by NSSF are not so much political as economically motivated IMO, but inexcusable nonetheless for how RKBA tone deaf they are.

November 29, 2004, 05:02 PM
Hmmm, 7.62x39 won't kill deer cleanly?

Amazing that a weapon with ballistics darn close to the venerable 30-30 isn't suitable for deer hunting.

This just shows that some folks, like this joker from the NSSF, don't care one hoot for the RKBA, they just want to make money. A pox upon them.

November 29, 2004, 05:25 PM
Either the NYT grossly misquoted him to the point of commiting liable (a definite possibility considering the NYT) or Mr. Keane doesn't like being called to task for his comments.

Feel free to fire him an e-mail - his e-mail address is publicly posted.

-----Original Message-----
From: Fletchette
Sent: Thu 11/25/2004 3:47 AM
To: Larry Keane <lkeane@nssf.org>
Subject: thanks

for selling us out.

Keane's reply:

Has it occurred to you that the NY Times took my comments out of context, created quotes, and distorted its my comments to advance its own agenda? The reporter is well know for having an antigun agenda and to whom the Brady Center regularly feeds stories.

I never said SKS are "rare" I never said they're never used to hunt. I never said you couldn't use 7.62 to hunt deer. I never said it was inappropriate to hunt w/ a semiauto. I never said anything about it being designed for "combat soldier." I never said SKS was in humane to hunt deer with.

I said this guy wasn't a hunter, he was a nut. I said SKS were not among the most common deer hunting rifles - they aren't but that isn't the same as saying they are "rare" or never used. My discussion w/ the NY Times was in general terms -- he was asking about AK-47's, the interview got into a general discussion about so-called "black guns" and the sunsetting of the Assault Weapons Ban. The discussion about ethical hunting related to a question about what's wrong w/ shooting an animal lots of times. In the discussion about the sunsetting of the Assault Weapon Ban I suggested to him that the Bradys and VPC, etc falsely claimed, as did many in the media, that these so-called 'black guns' were "high powered" and I suggested to him that deer hunting rifles were more powerful.

I've done countless interviews w/ the print, radio, TV including 2x w/ 60 Minutes representing the interests of gun owners and the industry. Even Mickey Mantle made an error every once in awhile. I'm sorry I didn't do a better job. I've learned a valuable lesson about dealing with the NY Times. Tomorrow I'm going to Radio Shack and buying a tape recorder.

Enough said on the subject. I'm going back to the dinner table to spend time w/ my family on Thanksgiving. I hope you and your family have a Happy Thanksgiving.

November 29, 2004, 05:26 PM
Just sent a venom filled email to NSSF for letting their people speak so carelessly to the biggest anti-gun rag of all. No excuse for being so carless with the BIGGEST ANTI_GUN RAG in the country.

November 29, 2004, 05:49 PM
What did Mr. Keane think would happen, allowing himself to be interviewed by an individual with the aforementioned track record of being a shill for the Brady Campaign? Did he think that his quotes would not have been taken out of context? It seems as if he went into the interview fully aware of this reporter's reputation.

I'm sorry, but the fact that he did not sell us out in his own words does not absolve him of all the responsibility for this. Taking quotes out of context and playing fast and loose with the truth is what these people are known for. Giving them your own words to play with and manipulate in the press is just asking for trouble.

He could have just said "The SKS is not an assault weapon and it is used frequently by many hunters" and left it at that. It seems from the e-mail that he knows he made a mistake and will cover for himself if this happens again. I hope he will be more careful in the future.

Harry Tuttle
November 29, 2004, 07:27 PM
The only safe way to deal with the press is to write out your points and repeat them over and over again.

Getting into a 1/2 hour conversation will get you tarred and feathered.

Fox Butterfield is well known:

Standing Wolf
November 29, 2004, 07:32 PM
The only safe way to deal with the press is to write out your points and repeat them over and over again.

Sad to say, even that's no guarantee with the presstitutes of the New York Times. Frankly, I think it would have made much more sense for the N.S.S.F. to speak with more reputable papers' reporters.

November 29, 2004, 08:23 PM
When I read Butterfield's article the first thing that went through my mind was "Were are the distortions and lies." Shore 'nuff there they were.

I was under the impression that you (editorial) simply did not conduct an interview without a tape recorder. Guess I was wrong. :scrutiny:

Now I hope Mr Keane take the time to email Mr. Butterfield a nasty-gram and thank him for so carefully representing his statements. It will not help with the NYT but it sure will clean up his skirt with the pro-second amendment world.

November 29, 2004, 11:42 PM
Keane should demand a retraction or some op-ed space.

He owes it to us to fix this mess.

BTW: info@nssf.org

Also, Fox Butterfield is not only whack on the gun issue, he's whack on other things. timeswatch.org has a few stories...


Apparently Mr. Butterfield is puzzled as to why so many criminals are in prison yet crime is down. Or is it, crime is down yet so many criminals are in prison. I get confused.


El Rojo
November 30, 2004, 12:06 AM
My letter to Larry Keane:

Just add me to one more person not happy with that interview with Fox Butterfield. Please do you best to rectify the situation. I won't be one of the "lets hang em for selling us out" crowd, but some damage was done and I hope you can do something to fix this. Good luck and I hope you learned something valuable here. If you need any help let me know.

El Rojo
2nd Amendment Enthusiast

November 30, 2004, 12:25 AM
Way to suck up, El Rojo. ;)

Jeff White
December 6, 2004, 04:27 PM
The Post did see fit to print Mr. Keane's response to their editorial.

Focus on crimes,
not the weapons

A Nov. 29 editorial shamelessly exploits the criminal attack on a group of Wisconsin hunters in order to promote an agenda against lawfully made and owned military-style semiautomatic rifles.

Semiautomatics have long been legal for hunting under the laws of most states. The 7.62 x 39 mm rifle reportedly involved in the Wisconsin killings fires a .30-caliber bullet that many hunters routinely use to humanely take down deer at moderate distances within 150 yards.

The quotes referenced from a New York Times article were not accurate in context and consequently not reflective of the National Shooting Sports Foundation's position on military-style semiautomatic firearms.

Our organization, which helps 40 million Americans safely enjoy hunting and recreational shooting, supported the expiration of the misnamed "assault weapons ban" for a number of good reasons. Chief among them was that the ban had no effect on crime. "Banned" guns and those functioning identically to them were legal to own and available for sale throughout the decade following the ban in 1994. During that time, crime rates, especially those for murder, dropped by about half.

What the ban was intended to do was make the argument that some guns are bad, in order to serve the ultimate purpose of arguing that all guns are bad.

Inanimate objects are neither good nor bad. Guns without criminals are not a problem, but criminals - even those without guns - always are.

Let's focus on prosecuting the individual who committed the crime in Wisconsin, not disparaging millions of responsible gun owners for the rifles they own.

Lawrence G. Keane
Senior Vice President
and General Counsel,
National Shooting Sports Foundation
Newtown, Conn.

Of course they couldn't let the opposing side have the last word:

Dangerous guns

President George W. Bush campaigned on the notion he was keeping America safe from terrorism. If this is the case, why did he let the federal assault weapons ban expire in September?

In Wisconsin, there are now six dead and two wounded at the hands of a killer with an assault rifle. How is our country safer by letting people carry very dangerous, terrorist-like weapons such as these previously banned firearms?

Many of these weapons are purchased with hardly a background check on the sellers or buyers. If Bush truly were concerned about safety in this country, he would urge his party's leaders in Congress to renew the federal ban on assault weapons.

Ryan D. Kulik
Executive Director,
Missourians Against Handgun

Cool Hand Luke 22:36
December 6, 2004, 08:25 PM
In some instances, the gun industry made cosmetic changes to some of its assault weapons in order to circumvent the law

I frequently "circumvent" the traffic laws by; driving at the speed limit, wearing my seatbelt, and properly insuring and registering my vehicle.

December 7, 2004, 12:19 PM
I frequently "circumvent" the traffic laws by; driving at the speed limit, wearing my seatbelt, and properly insuring and registering my vehicle.
That's one of the easiest ways to get a :fire: type reaction from me; the whole "loophole" argument. They always mention that people are doing something to "get around" the law. I'd say people are doing something to "comply with" the law.

December 7, 2004, 12:34 PM
One would think, alas such thinking is seemingly unwarranted, that the spokesman for a NATIONAL SHOOTING ORGANIZATION would be careful about what they say, especially when they are being interviewed by the dean of the ANTI GUN PRESS, The New York Times.

In case it had escaped your attention, there is unfortunately a large difference between things "as they are", and things "as they should be".

December 7, 2004, 02:59 PM
One would think, alas such thinking is seemingly unwarranted, that the spokesman for a NATIONAL SHOOTING ORGANIZATION would be careful about what they say, especially when they are being interviewed by the dean of the ANTI GUN PRESS, The New York Times.

FYI The NSSF is the organization that is behind a massive campaign distributing gun-locks for "safety" (your tax dollars bought them too). In the literature regarding those gunlocks they remain "neutral" (their words) on the idea of self-defense using a firearm but, mantain that there is no reason that a defensive weapon couldnt be locked when not in use. (see "operation child safe", hey its for the Children!)

I do NOT consider the NSSF to be out friends. They seen to personify the "they will never take away my birdgun/what do you need a ak47 fer, you can't hunt with it" croud.

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