“I Will Not Comply”

Washington Lawmakers Pass Mag Capacity Limits As Cliches Fly

Nothing makes less sense than politicians who know zip about firearms, to say nothing of personal protection, passing laws that put restrictions on guns used by armed citizens to defend themselves, their families and in an emergency, their neighbors.

Not only does a magazine ban affect rifles, it also will create problems
for people who own pistols such as this Sig Sauer P229 Elite with its greater capacity.

Washington lawmakers recently passed such a law, and to suggest it stinks would be excessively civil. According to the affected gun owners whose remarks I’ve read on social media, the Evergreen State is taking on a shade of brown, and it’s got nothing to do with fall colors.

Long story short, the legislation prohibits the import, sale, trade or manufacture of a “large capacity magazine,” which is defined as an “ammunition-feeding device with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds of ammunition…” As one might guess, this set off a buying frenzy, because—and here’s the puzzling part—any such magazines owned prior to the July 1 effective date will be “grandfathered in.” That is, the owners can keep them.

I can hear you all wondering, “How are they going to enforce this?” Magazines don’t have serial numbers, and if somebody has a garage full of them, how would anyone prove that individual didn’t have all of those magazines six months ago?

I happen to own a trio of 25-round magazines for my Ruger 10/22, which—believe it or not—falls within the initiative-adopted definition of a “semi-automatic assault rifle.”

It is imperative for you folks in other states to remember Washington is considered something of a “test tube” state by the gun prohibition lobby. It used to be California, but the Pacific Northwest has become the new petri dish for all manner of gun control nonsense to see what can be passed, and what can’t. What is tried in Washington this year might be coming to a state legislature near you next year.

Outbreak of Clichés

As noted earlier, nothing makes less sense … except perhaps for how some people react on social media to a gun restriction anywhere in the United States.

It’s the same all over, whether in New Jersey, Oregon, California, and Massachusetts; pick a state with a new gun control law and I guarantee you will hear or see the following:

“I will not comply!” pops up first, frequently followed by “I had this tragic boating accident.” What may have been amusing a dozen years ago has lost its oomph. Besides, trying to be clever to get around a dumb gun law can end badly, and such claims are juvenile at best.

At this writing, plaintiffs in a federal case challenging California’s “high capacity” magazine ban had filed an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court for review of their case, known as Duncan v. Bonta. They won twice, at trial and then on appeal to a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, but then the court held an en banc re-hearing with 11 judges, and they reversed.

So, since Washington is also in the Ninth Circuit, we’ll all probably see authorities in that state pushing hard to prevent the high court from reviewing the Duncan case. It is time for the Supremes to take such a case to further define the parameters of the Second Amendment. Let’s hope they are very broad.

Just for edification, the 10-round limit applies to pistol magazines as well as those for rifles. Suddenly, owners of striker-fired Glocks, Springfields, Smith & Wessons, SIG SAUERs and other popular pistol brands and models are paying attention. It’s not just guys with rifles who are being targeted. Handgunners are in the crosshairs as well.

I inquired with a couple of pals at the National Shooting Sports Foundation about the origin of the “magic” 10-round limit. Whose idea was that? Neither of my contacts was certain, but it appears to have originated with someone in the gun control lobby, once again demonstrating a lack of firearms understanding evidently rampant among that bunch.

Dave was presented with this custom-built Street Deuce by Scheutzen Pistol Works many years ago.

Better Times

Gun writing didn’t used to be all fun and games with politics. I once enjoyed frequent serious pistol shooting, and recently reached into the gun safe to pull out a gem I’m particularly proud of.

Some years back while doing research for an article about buying a custom pistol, one of the outfits I contacted for background was Schuetzen Pistol Works, then a division of Olympic Arms. Next thing I knew, they were building me a pistol with a personalized serial number, two barrels (one a match barrel and bushing and the other a bushingless bull barrel), a two-tone finish, Heinie tritium sights and a very good trigger, set at 4.5 pounds.

The finished product included two barrels, a bull and a match-grade with bushing.

After all these years, it still shoots very well and I would confidently carry it down any dark alley. But there’s a problem. Also some years ago, I had a set of faux ivory grips with an NRA pin set into the right panel crafted by Mike Prater in Georgia and they were beautiful. I eventually put them on the Deuce, replacing a set of checkered rosewood panels.

This nasty crack appeared in the Mike Prater-produced faux ivory grip panel.
The NRA pin inset gives the grip a unique, one-of-a-kind appearance.)

Time caught up, however, and the right panel—naturally the one with the inset—developed a lateral crack at the lower grip screw hole. So, I had to repair as best as I could with epoxy. It looks a bit shoddy, but it seems to work so far.

The late gunsmith maestro Richard Niemer, who passed away too soon in late 2013, built the pistol—dubbed the “Street Deuce” because of its two-tone finish. His gunsmith work was superb; in my humble opinion, and over the years we had developed a good friendship so I occasionally bounced a detail or idea off of him to see how it might shake out.

Dave occasionally packs the Deuce in this IWB holster; out of sight, but always in mind if trouble appears.

I never had to worry about any of my pistols he tinkered with. They came back shooting accurately, and every one of them was some variation of a 1911.

Best thing about the Deuce is that it fits the same holsters used for my Springfield 1911, so it’s an easy carry.

And it looks good.

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