Richmond Times Dispatch runs anti-AK column


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SpeedAKL
June 28, 2008, 12:19 PM
Just picked up the paper this morning (yeah its 11 AM but hey I sleep in late) and saw Richmond Times Dispatch columnist Michael Paul Williams going off on Kalashnikov rifles. A high school student in nearby Powhatan County was murdered by three people and apparently died of 7.62x39 fired from an AK. The article did not specify whether the rounds were from an AK-47 or a version from a different country, whether the gun was auto or semi, or whether it was bought legally or acquired illegally.

What he did say was that we should own assault rifles, they're unnecessary, no man needs a 50-round clip, AKs are dangerous to Richmond city, etc etc etc....basically, the usual anti-gun arguments that can be summed up as "Nobody needs a weapon like this, so let's ban it". He quoted a few lines from a Virginia CDL guy but quoted a fair bit more from the Brady Bunch, including a statistic that "assault rifle" crime went down 66% after the 1994 ban was introduced and since has become "pervasive" after it expired. Is this true?

Anyway, here is the link to the article. An area to post comments is linked at the bottom. To get published in the paper, write to letters@timesdispatch.com and Mr. William's e-mail address is mwilliams@timesdispatch.com

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divemedic
June 28, 2008, 12:27 PM
Article? Link?

SsevenN
June 28, 2008, 12:28 PM
The URL?

Big45
June 28, 2008, 12:28 PM
So sorry. Common usage and all.

SpeedAKL
June 28, 2008, 12:29 PM
oops, my bad

http://www.inrich.com/cva/ric/news.apx.-content-articles-RTD-2008-06-28-0109.html

Powhatan teen's slaying raises a question: Who needs an AK-47?

Saturday, Jun 28, 2008 - 12:08 AM

By MICHAEL PAUL WILLIAMS
TIMES-DISPATCH COLUMNIST

Today I didn't even have to use my AK I got to say it was a good day -- Ice Cube

No one would mistake the Flat Rock area of Powhatan County for South Central Los Angeles.

Homicides are a shocking rarity in this slice of rural Virginia, much less those involving an assault rifle. But Powhatan Sheriff Gregory A. Neal said an AK-47 is what killed 18-year-old Tahliek Taliaferro.

The AK-47 and its imitators have left a bloody imprint on our culture that extends beyond the rap video.

"Nearly all, if not all gun shows in Virginia, you can buy an AK-47 knockoff from any seller, any weekend of the year," said Brian Siebel, senior attorney with the Washington-based Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

Taliaferro was slain and a juvenile was injured Tuesday evening. Three suspects -- Stephanie Reynolds, 19, Ethan Scott Parrish, 24, and Joey Parrish, 17 -- remain at large.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Washington ban on handguns. In the process, it affirmed that a right of individual gun ownership exists.

That right should not extend to assault weapons.

"It's really only useful for shooting human beings," Siebel said. "You don't need 50 rounds for target practice [or] for some sort of self-defense situation. And nobody would take one of these guns hunting."

Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, says the AK-47's prowess is exaggerated. He said it's a weapon no faster or no more powerful than a hunting rifle; the only difference is it can be loaded with a high-capacity magazine.

As for the Powhatan slaying, "I guess when I heard about the AK-47, I just shrugged. . . . [The killer] could have used a deer rifle to the same effect."

Well, I say when it comes to guns, we've passed a tipping point in the balance between rights and wretched excess.

The federal assault-weapons ban signed into law by President Bill Clinton expired in September 2004. Six states ban assault weapons, but Virginia isn't one of them.

Van Cleave called the federal ban "a joke." But Siebel says the rate in which assault weapons were recovered in crime dropped 66 percent during the decade when the law was in place.

Josh Horwitz, a board member of the Virginia Center for Public Safety, said the center's focus is on closing the "gun-show loophole" that allows unlicensed dealers -- about 30 percent of the dealers at gun shows -- to sell weapons without background checks.

"I can tell you since they lifted the assault-weapons ban, they've become much more prevalent," Horwitz, executive director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, said of AK-47s.

"I think the best thing we can do is reauthorize the national assault-weapons ban. But right now, that's difficult. And the Virginia legislature has been notably recalcitrant to pass any new gun-control legislation, even after the Virginia Tech incident."

Some gun dealers, where AK-47s are concerned, are going about the business of policing themselves.

"We don't handle those kinds of weapons," said an employee at Southern Gun World on Midlothian Turnpike. "We're so close to the city of Richmond, we'd rather not see those weapons in the wrong kinds of hands."

Apparently, one fell into the wrong hands in Powhatan.
Contact Michael Paul Williams at (804) 649-6815 or mwilliams@timesdispatch.com.

Standing Wolf
June 28, 2008, 12:33 PM
Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Washington ban on handguns. In the process, it affirmed that a right of individual gun ownership exists.
That right should not extend to assault weapons.

In plain English: I don't like it, so you can't have it, commoner.

General Geoff
June 28, 2008, 12:33 PM
Assault rifle crime is essentially nonexistent. Last time I noted an assault rifle being used during the commission of a crime in this country was back during that bank heist in Hollywood. And those were illegally-modified to fire full auto.

rockinrussky
June 28, 2008, 12:38 PM
Richmond Times has really gone off the deep end with their political slant lately. Used to actually be a halfway decent paper. I expect to see a lot more of this now that Heller has gone our way.

Bullseye57
June 28, 2008, 12:50 PM
And what was the assault weapon of the time, back in 1791, when the Bill of Rights was ratified and amended into the US Constitution? A musket (with or without a bayonet).

My point being, private ownership of assault weapons are exactly what the 2A was about. How else could common citizens effectively join in and assist with the defense of the nation in time of crisis? Without the proper training in use of military weapons there is no citizen militia. The 2A is not just about personal defense, it is also about national defense. A well trained citizenry can help defend the nation with little notice or extensive training.

R,
Bullseye


http://guntalk-online.com/images/guntalk_logo_sm.jpg (http://guntalk-online.com/forum/index.php)

FieroCDSP
June 28, 2008, 12:50 PM
I've read an article several years that called an SKS (yugo, bone stock) an AK. When you get into mods for the SKS, you invariably get something that looks like an AK, only longer, but its clear to anyone that knows anything about guns that these people usually don't know what they're talking about.

And yes, you are going to see more and more gun tragedy stories, so they can show just how wrong the Heller decision was. It doesn't matter that the guns will have already been in play long before Heller.

The next ban attempt is coming, and it'll have the sunset and grandfathering so we can't complain about anything, but they'll be banking on having a congress later that will re-authorize it.

Start saving up your fact spreadsheets that prove that the last four years since the expiration of the last AWB have been relatively AW crime free.

Tribal
June 28, 2008, 01:01 PM
My Godmother's mother lives near Richmond and was actually a victim of a crime with an AK. In something completely surreal and random, she, her husband, and another couple with whom they were friends had just pulled up to a restaurant. Right before they got out of the car, a guy walked over with an AK with a drum magazine, fired a single shot and hit my Godmother's mother's friend in the arm, and left. I'm not sure that they ever found the guy.

Very, very random.

Also, I'd be willing to take an AK hunting.

SpeedAKL
June 28, 2008, 01:14 PM
I love how the Brady Bunch guy claims that the rifles are unnecessary and useless for target shooting. I guess all that 7.62x39 I've shot was money down the drain, then....

W.E.G.
June 28, 2008, 01:18 PM
In plain English: I don't like it, so you can't have it, commoner.

Well said.

That about sums up 99% of the anti-gun arguments.

The "influential" will decide what rights the common man shall have.

I'm pretty sure that's WHY the Constitution was written. To address the arrogance, meanness, and stupidity of those "influential" types.

Triphammer
June 28, 2008, 01:31 PM
quote- My Godmother's mother lives near Richmond and was actually a victim of a crime with an AK. In something completely surreal and random, she, her husband, and another couple with whom they were friends had just pulled up to a restaurant. Right before they got out of the car, a guy walked over with an AK with a drum magazine, fired a single shot and hit my Godmother's mother's friend in the arm, and left. -endquote

If the punk w/ the rifle saw 3 or 4 .38s to 45s pointed at him, do you think he'd have fired?

Cacique500
June 28, 2008, 01:39 PM
I sent him an email detailing all of his "inaccuracies". I also spanked him a little for throwing in his OPINIONS in a news article. Will post if I get a response from him.

SpeedAKL
June 28, 2008, 01:50 PM
Cacique500:

Just an advisory, his column is an opinion/commentary piece and not meant to be news.

Cacique500
June 28, 2008, 02:16 PM
Oops...it said "News" in big blue letters above the article...:o

Well at least I called him out on the rest of it

JackBurtonJr
June 28, 2008, 06:13 PM
If you all ever need to use this feel free to quote as much as you want... or just link to it...

http://hubpages.com/hub/Assault-Weapons-Evil-Black-Rifles-or-perhaps-not

LKB3rd
June 28, 2008, 07:48 PM
Nice article Jack. I have bookmarked it for future use/reference.

makanut
June 28, 2008, 08:53 PM
Crimes committed with assault rifles are exceedingly rare. And so are assault rifles. Semi-auto ak clones, however are in common use, and found for sale in most gun shops. Sorry Richmond Times, so sorry.

Robert Hairless
June 29, 2008, 01:02 AM
I'd be interested in writing a column for the Richmond Times Dispatch explaining why nobody needs Richmond, the Times Dispatch, or Michael Paul Williams.

My argument begins with the indisputable facts: all of them are unnecessary, not one of them performs a useful function, no one needs a city in that location, it's overpopulated, it has a history of harboring dangerous men that bring this country to internal strife, and it would be better used as agricultural land for raising corn that could save the world from its present over-reliance on fossil fuels.

I have many other equally telling arguments that should motivate all right-thinking Americans to bulldoze the City of Richmond. I am for hire. No Confederate money, please, and no coinage that bears a portrait of Mickey Rooney on one side and the slogan "I'm a little short right now" on the other. That trick will not work a second time.

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