Editorial

Follow-Up: “A Liability Strategy”

I was torn when I initially proposed a more aggressive gun-sales program that would dry up supplies of firearms and ammunition for law-enforcement agencies in municipalities that are suing the gun industry (July 1999). On the one hand, I wanted gun makers to do something that pointed out the hypocrisy of the big-city mayors. Petulant? You bet. The flipside, which I recognized at the time, was that it was unfair to penalize the cops for their bosses’ actions.

I expected to hear thunder from law enforcement, criticizing my suggestions as irresponsible, which, in fact, they were. Instead, I’ve heard mostly whispers from policemen, constables, sheriffs, BATF and FBI trainers, military instruc...

Protecting Your Own

There are few gun-related items in the mainstream media that make much sense to me. But a recent column by Jill “J.R.” Labbe, senior editorial writer and columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, was the exception. I thought you’d like to read some of her thoughts, which pretty well sum up my own. Ms. Labbe writes:


Within hours after the shootings at the Wedgwood Baptist Church, a letter arrived at the Star-Telegram expressing the wish that I had been inside the church on that deadly Wednesday night.

I wish I had, too, but for a different reason than the writer’s desire for me to witness the carnage left by two handguns wielded by a raging paranoid.

At least the se...

Follow-Up: “A Liability Strategy”

I was torn when I initially proposed a more aggressive gun-sales program that would dry up supplies of firearms and ammunition for law-enforcement agencies in municipalities that are suing the gun industry (July 1999). On the one hand, I wanted gun makers to do something that pointed out the hypocrisy of the big-city mayors. Petulant? You bet. The flipside, which I recognized at the time, was that it was unfair to penalize the cops for their bosses’ actions.

I expected to hear thunder from law enforcement, criticizing my suggestions as irresponsible, which, in fact, they were. Instead, I’ve heard mostly whispers from policemen, constables, sheriffs, BATF and FBI trainers, military instruc...

Why I Shoot

It’s been a tough year for the serious shooter, the firearms aficionado who’s more than casual about his or her guns and who helps comprise the core of the Gun Tests readership. Between murderous teenagers fomenting America’s anti-gun sentiment, to an onslaught of litigation by municipalities directed against law-abiding gun manufacturers, to the complete capitulation of once-stalwart Colt’s Manufacturing, the year now ending saw setbacks abound in the furtherance of America’s firearms freedoms. One headline from The Wall Street Journal, quoting a disaffected gun enthusiast, summed it up: When you shoot, “You feel like a smoker.”

But not me. And probably not you, either. So at this time o...

Bits and Pieces

Those of us who’ve toiled in the oil fields at least some of our lives know what it’s like to actually see inside a pipeline that will eventually carry oil or gas—and realize what incredible volumes of fluid these tubes can carry. But they are nothing like what the information pipeline, especially the Internet, can deliver. Like oil gushing out the end of a 36-inch trans-state pipe, news comes flooding into our homes and businesses, more than we could ever consume. But unlike oil, not all news is valuable, so finding interesting bits and pieces of it in the flood becomes quite a task.

Here are a few items we found and refined recently that might be interesting to gun owners:

A Solution To All Our Problems

Nearly all the gun owners I know wonder how the world took on the character and flavor of Alice in Wonderland, especially in the last 20 years of the 20th century. By this I mean that up is down and right is wrong, and wrong is so horribly right these days, especially when it comes to guns. It wasn’t so long ago that kids took shotguns to school because they’d already been hunting that morning; it never crossed the minds of those youngsters to take potshots at their fellow classmates. Now, even high achievers take 9mm handguns to class and fire off a few rounds at their chums. One such miscreant, when asked why he did such a horrible thing, could only utter, “I don’t know.”

How utterly pe...

Gun Law Threatens Wildlife Causes

California wildlife programs will be dealt a serious blow if the Assembly passes a newly amended bill now in committee.

Assembly Bill 1010, introduced by Assemblyman Tony Cardenas (D-LA), would ban the distribution, drawing, or lottery of any firearm, component or ammunition at any California fundraising event. This is significant because nearly all California conservation organizations use sporting arms as prizes at their events.

“For a state that has a reputation for concern about the environment, California’s elected officials are close to selling their outdoors as well as their citizens down the drain,” said Bud Pidgeon, president of the Wildlife Legislative Fund of America (WLFA)....

Somebody’s Got To Do It

The overwhelming tone of reader mail we get is gratitude for telling it like it is. As you’ll see when you read about 4-inch revolvers, custom .45 ACPs, turkey shotguns, and .22 rifles, hardnosed critiques are our exclusive franchise. You won’t read critical buy-this, don’t-buy-that comparisons of firearms products anywhere else.

We’re glad this approach is unique, but it’s always a little surprising to many shooters. If you go onto any shooting range anywhere in this country (or the world, I suppose), you’ll hear frank discussions of firearms performance. One shooter will say, “This gun is a sack of hooey [or words to that effect].” Another will add, “That gun shoots like a house afire.”...

Somebody’s Got To Do It

The overwhelming tone of reader mail we get is gratitude for telling it like it is. As you’ll see when you read about 4-inch revolvers, custom .45 ACPs, turkey shotguns, and .22 rifles, hardnosed critiques are our exclusive franchise. You won’t read critical buy-this, don’t-buy-that comparisons of firearms products anywhere else.

We’re glad this approach is unique, but it’s always a little surprising to many shooters. If you go onto any shooting range anywhere in this country (or the world, I suppose), you’ll hear frank discussions of firearms performance. One shooter will say, “This gun is a sack of hooey [or words to that effect].” Another will add, “That gun shoots like a house afire.”...

Boycott Smith & Wesson?

I received an email on March 23 at 5:26:48 p.m. from Phil and Sandy Harpine of Leesville, South Carolina. The email header read only this: “S&W sell out.” The body of the email message was nearly as short. It read: “Please do not use one cent of my subscription to test, write about or reference any S&W product!!!!!!”

And that wasn’t the first communication I’d had on the subject. Two days earlier, the Gun Owners of America group had issued an email alert whose header read: “Smith & Wesson Sell-out: Boycott!” The headline on the email read, “GOA Announces Boycott of Clinton & Wesson—Sell-out worse than originally reported.”

As you might expect, I’ve gotten nearly 100 pieces of email, fa...

Continuing Smith & Wesson Fallout

Readers who wrote me about Gun Tests’s decision to continue testing Smith & Wesson products in light of the company’s deal with the Clinton administration has elicited a steady stream of comments pro and con. To recap, we believe our subscribers are adult enough to read our articles and make their own decisions about buying or boycotting Smith products. It’s not the magazine’s place to black-out information on a company simply because we don’t like a business decision its executives have made.

However, not everyone agreed. An email from Alan Bint of Pensacola, Florida, said, “I will not renew. I just received my May issue. I was and am very disappointed in your reaction to the Smith & Wes...

Odds and Ends

Gary Anderson, a gold-medal smallbore shooter, former Atlanta Olympic shooting venue manager, and now director of the Civilian Marksmanship Program in Port Clinton, Ohio, wrote recently to say, I noted a comment in your July Gun Tests editorial about the shut-down of the U. S. Army Reserves Pistol and Rifle Teams. When the USAR Pistol Team left the National Matches, they thought they were turning in their equipment for the last time. By the time the Service Rifle Team was ready to leave, the decision had been reversed and USAR Teams were back in business.

Anderson said the proposed shutdown of the teams was done strictly as a cost-cutting move and was not driven by any higher political...

Miller v. Bonta Decision

Click the link below to see the entire Miller v. Bonta decision referenced in the August 2021 Downrange editorial. gov.uscourts.casd.642089.115.0_1