California Democrat Dianne Feinstein will begin her fourth full term as a U.S. senator much as she started her Senate career: fighting for a ban on assault weapons. [Associated Press]

THE ASSAULT WEAPONS ban bill that Senator Feinstein has been promising is landing, delivering a challenge to the N.R.A. contingent on the conservative right, but also Democrats. I remain skeptical that it’s only going to be a cosmetic bill, and grandfathering weapons in still means there will be a lot in circulation, but at least she is attempting to drill down on weaponry that even former General Stanley McCrystal has publicly stated should not be in the hands of citizens.

Senator Feinstein, a long advocate of gun safety and controls, is also representing the majority view of Americans, as well as law enforcement agencies, so she has powerful allies behind her.

The bookend to this sober move on gun control comes over at the National Review Online, who yesterday had a column by two women heralding the fact that young women supposedly “want AR-15s.” They couldn’t be talking to a tinier minority if they tried. The column declares we prefer an AR-15 ‘assault’ rifle with a 30-round magazine for self-defense.”

Maybe the girls can’t shoot, but that’s doubtful. Or maybe they’re paranoid, which could be the case. More likely, they’re representative of the current and next generation of conservative women who will offer nothing different from their gun lobby besotted male counterparts, because unless you channel the boys in the establishment who depend on the gun lobby to get elected, it’s not like you’re going to be offered a platform to speak.

This is what a minority view looks like and the next generation of conservative women think it’s a good thing.

But it’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever read, especially considering the climate today and the reality we all face in the modern era. I’m nitpicking, but quotations when talking about the AR-15 is just silly. Their case for high-capacity magazines is even worse, unless you live in the movie “Total Recall” or are making the soldier’s case.

Imagining ourselves in a high-stress, violent situation, we want a gun with enough ammo, and more, to get the job done. Sometimes, you only get one shot. At other times, you may need more. When you don’t have time to reload in the heat of a home invasion, the AR-15′s 30-round magazine gives you the flexibility and security a handgun will not.

High-capacity magazines serve as a life-saving insurance mechanism, a self-defense back-up if something doesn’t go according to plan.

These women have been watching way too many Hollywood movies and have come away with a Rambo fetish. Their imagination has gone wild. I say this as someone who has fired an automatic rifle, very aware of what it can do, which is a good reason to get active on the side of putting meaning back in our gun laws.

Touching off a 9 millimeter weapon in the house, like our HK, would scare any criminal invading, with this type of weapon easily killing anyone who traversed further into the house. It’s accurate as long as you can shoot at a target two feet wide and hit it.

This ridiculous NRO column proves that young conservative women really don’t understand where Americans are today, especially the vast majority of American women. The Republican Party has been well out of touch for a long time with mainstream Americans, so they’ve taken to doing things in secret in states across this country, while the wider public isn’t looking. Conservative women today write things like this, perhaps, because they’re so used to being voiceless that they’ve learned to join the boys rather than lead them in the direction Americans want to go.

This NRO column isn’t as important as the bill Senator Feinstein is attempting to pass through the Senate. Though I remain in favor of doing something about high-capacity magazines, as well as the importation of assault weapons, both of which her bill addresses, banning weaponry is not my thing. I know too many individuals who appreciate the craftsmanship of weaponry who are law abiding citizens and I see no reason they shouldn’t legally have whatever weapon they want.

What I’m adamant about is universal background checks, a national gun database that is accessible in every state, as well as more mental health records being made available to the ATF and other law enforcement agencies. The ATF needs a permanent director and our current gun laws need to have the spine put back in them.

The NRO is not helping anything, certainly not aiding people in understand why some gun owners want these weapons.  They give the best example through this silly column of why so many people are against the right’s continued shilling for a small minority of Americans, who don’t come close to representing the wider public’s view on guns.

However, when I look at Feinstien versus the NRO putting up a piece on young conservative women making the case for AR-15s for home protection, complete with a defense of 30-round magazines, there’s no question that Democratic women are on the side of the majority of Americans. While conservative women are still beholden to the men on the right who worship at the feet of the gun lobby, which evidently is going to include the next generation of conservative women.

That’s good news for Democrats.

Feinstein’s new bill, which will be introduced Thursday in the Senate, among other things proposes to:

  • Ban the sale, transfer, importation or manufacturing of about 150 named firearms, plus certain rifles, handguns and shotguns fitted for detachable magazines and having at least one military characteristic.
  • Strengthen the 1994 ban by moving from a two- to a one-characteristic test to determine what constitutes an assault weapon.
  • Ban firearms with “thumbhole stocks” and “bullet buttons.”
  • Ban the importation of assault weapons and large-capacity magazines.
  • Ban high-capacity ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds.

The bill would grandfather in weapons legally owned on the day of enactment and exempts over 900 specific weapons “used for hunting or sporting purposes.”

[source: USA Today]