NATIONAL REVIEW.COM August 17, 2020 – The Second Amendment has won a small victory in California, with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals striking down as unconstitutional the state’s ban on so-called high-capacity magazines — which, as the court pointed out, is in practice a ban on most of the handgun and rifle magazines sold in the United States, because California defines “high capacity” as eleven rounds. “It makes unlawful magazines that are commonly used in handguns by law abiding citizens for self-defense,” Judge Kenneth Lee wrote in the majority opinion. “And it substantially burdens the core right of self-defense guaranteed to the people under the Second Amendment.”
And, so: “It cannot stand.”
Well said. Bans on high-capacity magazines are, like almost everything else in our politics today, largely symbolic. The majority of the deaths from gunshot wounds in the United States are suicides. Three out of five of the Americans who die from gunshot wounds every year are suicides, not murders. (Another nonnegligible portion are accidents.)
At the risk of being macabre in the unfortunately necessary course of pointing out the obvious, suicides tend to be single-shot affairs. The Americans who die in suicides are not being killed by the 20th round in the magazine — they are being killed by despair, by the same spiritual crisis that is at the foundation of so much misery in the United States today, from opioid addiction to the neglect and abuse of dependent children.
But we have been through this many times. The television news and the movies are full of footage of gangsters firing machine guns at each other in the streets, and our progressive friends talk about how you can walk into a Walmart and buy a machine gun like it was a box of laundry detergent; in reality, the number of legally owned automatic weapons that have been used in murders in the United States since the Great Depression could be counted on one hand.
Illegally acquired automatic weapons are rarely used in violent crimes, either, for reasons that would be obvious to anybody except the people who make the laws in California: They are very expensive, they are complicated to operate and maintain, most of them are difficult to conceal, etc. [full article]