I read, with interest, the letter from Mr. Milton Powell in the KDH of Saturday, 11 August and I feel duty bound to provide additional comments.
Firstly, the frequently abused term “assault weapon” is defined as a firearm capable of full and semi-automatic fire, that likely is fitted with a detachable magazine, bayonet stud, and other such militarily useful features.
That said, few actual assault weapons are likely to be found in the homes of gun owners, since any piece capable of full automatic fire is strictly regulated and taxed under the provisions of the National Firearms Act of 1934.
Secondly, it appears that both Mr. Powell and Mr. Dudley are misinformed as concerns what actually constitutes a clip. A clip is a piece of metal that holds individual rounds of ammunition together, usually to facilitate rapid reloading of a box magazine. One weapon that did employ an enbloc clip in the weapon is the US M-1 rifle of WWII and Korean War fame, and with which I qualified in basic training many years ago.
What many people mistakenly refer to as clips, in reality, are detachable box magazines characteristically seen on such pieces as our M-16/M-4 rifles and the AK-47, along with myriads of other military and sporting rifles and pistols.
In view of the above discussion, there ARE box magazine fed shotguns, and they are NOT illegal in the USA. One such shotgun is the Saiga-12, which is an adaptation of the AK-47 action to fire shotshells. I have such a piece in my collection, and they are easily found in gun shops and at gun shows along with a few other examples.
As for his comments concerning the NRA, I must take exception to any such criticism. The NRA has been an organization that provides and promotes education in firearms safety and use since 1871.
That it is the most effective lobby organization in Washington is testimony to the validity of its purpose in preserving the individual rights of Americans to own and use firearms. The effectiveness of the NRA can be seen in the two recent Supreme Court decisions that re-affirm that the Second Amendment is a right of individual Americans.
While we proponents of individual firearm rights continue to educate as many people as we can, one of the constant problems that keeps people from appreciating these rights is found in their misunderstanding of such simple things as correct terminology. When the haze of misinformation is cleared, we can all see things in more accurate, realistic terms.
Conrad A. Novack
retired lieutenant colonel, U.S. Army,
NRA Benefactor Life Member