Ammo Ban? How We Get Facts Wrong on M855

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I’m about to make a bunch of my friends really uncomfortable. Those of us who believe strongly in Second Amendment rights have to stand united in our opposition to the proposed reclassification of M855 (or Green-Tip) ammo. We cannot fight this ban by misreading regulations or engaging in wishful thinking. I’m about to pick apart some of the most vocal arguments I’ve heard in the last week. I want to make it clear–I’m doing this in support of this fight. We will not win by butchering facts.

And yes, we do have a lot more at stake in this argument than M855. Read on. Read carefully. This is about to get complicated. There are two key things to know now:

  1. M855 ammunition does have a steel core. Keep your finger off the comment button until you’ve read why.
  2. There’s a lot more at stake than just M855.

The proposed ban of M855 (SS109)

Let’s begin with the basics. The BATFE has announced that it intends to revoke the exemption previously granted to M855, more commonly known as Green-Tip, .223. More specifically, they’re looking for a working guide for classifying ammunition as armor piercing.

DOJ spokesman Patrick Rosenbush said in a statement:

“Under the Gun Control Act [of 1968], Congress acted to protect law enforcement from armor piercing ammunition that can be fired from a handgun. The law explicitly authorizes the Attorney General to exempt ammunition ‘primarily intended for sporting purposes.’ No action has been taken –ATF is simply proposing, and requesting public comment on, a framework to enforce the law that Congress passed and provide guidance for the industry through a transparent process for making exemption decisions.”

Let’s look closely at the BATFE’s rationale. The M855 round is armor piercing. No thinking human being can dispute this. M855 is easily capable of penetrating Type I, IIA, II, and IIIA. Even when fired from most AR pistols, the M855 can penetrate some types of armor. It is pointless (and counter productive) to argue that–because it can be stopped by Type IV armor–it isn’t armor piercing (an argument I’ve heard more than once this week). Most police officers wear IIIA vests, at most,–and it is their safety that is (dubiously) in question.

Interestingly, the original Gun Control Act referenced above contained a provision that allowed some “armor piercing” rounds escape the ban. The GCA took into account intent. If a round was intended to be fired from a rifle, it was exempt from the handgun provision. There were few rifle caliber pistols at that time. Not anymore. The incredible popularity of the AR pistol has (the ATF argues) increased the chance that LEOs will face criminals with more easily concealed rifle caliber pistols capable of shooting through their inadequate vests.

Enter in the LEOPA of 1985

Concerned that the GCA of 1968 left ambiguity in this question of intent, lawmakers revisited the issue in the 1980s. The Law Enforcement Officer Protection Act removed the question of intended use and replaced it with this articulate definition.

Excerpt from the LEOPA now being used to judge M855's status.

Excerpt from the LEOPA now being used to judge M855’s status.

The M855’s bullet is comprised of three main components: the jacket, the lead core, and the steel core.

M855 on left, M855A1 on the right.

M855 on left, M855A1 on the right.

Yes. You read correctly. The M855 has a steel core. Green tip. Steel core. I’ve listened to a lot of conflated nomenclature in the last week that wishfully combines the two into steel-tip, in an attempt to skirt the “core” definition. It doesn’t help that M855A1 does have a steel tip–but that’s a different essay.

I can’t tell you how many people I’ve argued with in the last week about this very issue. All of the arguments go something like this: “The M855 has a lead core with a steel tip.” Too many of us want to simply ignore what the statement above says about projectiles and cores. Instead, we read what we want to read. And if you look at the image on the right, you will see that the M855 actually has a tip comprised of its jacket. No steel.

Consider this well intentioned letter:

To Whom It May Concern:
I oppose reclassifying M855 ammunition as “armor piercing.” Because of the high lead-content of its bullet, M855 does not meet the BATFE’s own definition of armor piercing ammunition.
The  “high lead-content” has absolutely nothing do with anything.
Or worse, this one:
To Whom it May Concern:I am writing to comment on the proposed determination regarding SS109/M855 .223/5.56 ammunition.Based on the language used within 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(17)(B), I believe that this ammunition is, in the first place, improperly classified as armor piercing:[…]First, as can be seen in Figure 1, the core is NOT constructed ENTIRELY of any of the listed materials, but instead consists of a two-part core comprised of lead and steel.

The mistake is more subtle. “…the core….” But honestly: “I believe”? This part of the argument isn’t about opinion.

Here’s the crux of the biscuit:

“a projectile or projectile core….”

You will note the omission of the indefinite article “a” between the words “or projectile core.” Had there had been a limiting constraint put on the word core, like “one” core, or “the” core, we might be able to argue against the existence of a steel core. But we can’t. No matter how you cut up that single description, the M855’s projectile fits the bill.

There is no article preceding the noun “core.” Nor is there a indefinite article. Instead, we’re looking at a a grammatical absence known as the “zero article,” which essentially means that the noun lacks an identifier. The noun, then, becomes indefinite. This is not about just one core. The projectile in this equation can be made up of multiple cores.

While I agree with the “one core” wishful thinking from a philosophical perspective, it doesn’t change the fact that the component parts of the M855 projectile have a long paper trail that includes actual names for these parts.

Semantics. Grammar. Syntax. They matter. I know I’m the editor of a blog, and I play fast and loose with language–but I’m pulling rank in this argument. On behalf of all of us who love M855, I want to advise against anyone using the one-core line of attack. We can’t fight lawyers and politicians by making up our own terms for items that have already been named.

M855/SS109

M855/SS109

I’m having difficulty putting my hands on the patent drawings for the original SS109 projectile, which would later be designated the M855. But there are numerous patents that include descriptions of bullets based on the bullet. Here’s one (emphasis added):

Examples of jacketed, boat-tailed bullets can be found in small caliber, 0.5 inch and under, penetrator projectiles used by military forces worldwide. For example, the United States and NATO military forces use vast quantities of M855 cartridges containing 62 grain penetrator bullets, one of which is depicted generally at 10 in FIG. 1. As shown in FIG. 1, the M855 bullet 10 has two aligned cores12 and 14 enveloped by a brass jacket 16. A steel core12 is located in a nose section 18 of the bullet 10 and a 32 grain lead core 14 is swaged into a rear section 20. The bullet 10 has a heel that is tapered to form a boat-tail 22, which provides the bullet 10 with ballistic stability and improved aerodynamic performance. In this case, the boat-tail 22 extends from a bearing surface 24 of the bullet 10 to a base 26 of the bullet 10. At a total weight of 62 grains, the M855 bullet 10 has the kinetic energy required to penetrate a 10 gage steel plate when fired from a distance of 600 meters.

If you’re keeping score at home, note the inclusion of these phrases: “the M855 has two aligned cores”, “steel core”, “lead core.” In other places, you’ll find phrases like “front core,” too. We will not win an argument–any argument–by attempting to redefine the word core, or by attempting to limit the number of cores a single bullet can contain. Case in point:

Cutting through our own bullshit

Here’s a subtle lie that’s being perpetuated on  FoxNews.com:

“The law, which was passed in 1986, gives the agency authority to ban bullets that are ‘constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper or depleted uranium.’”

The article’s author, Maxim Lott, is guilty of a very serious infraction. The law does cover “bullets that are ‘constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper or depleted uranium,” but that isn’t the M855. That is in no way the M855. M855 isn’t “constructed entirely” of any one thing. Those bullets exist, but are not M855. And pretending, in print, that this is what we’re fighting about makes it harder for us to win this fight.

Follow me through this people. Mr. Lott, in constructing his argument for Fox News, has chosen to leave out the part of the ruling that does define M855. The question of the steel core. I can understand why Lott and the editors of FoxNews.com screwed up. This is complicated. This is way more complicated than most Americans, firearms enthusiasts or not, are capable of understanding.

Even our long-time friend and ally, Alan Gottlieb–arguably one of the most ardent defenders of freedom I could name–seems confused about the issue. Here’s his contribution to FoxNews.com’s fair-and-balanced article:

“Almost any hunting rifle bullet will go through body armor, so you could prohibit almost any rifle bullet with this. This is the administration redefining the law on its own.”

On the surface, Gottlieb appears mistaken about the language of the ban. We’re talking about pistol rounds, not rifle rounds. The M855 began its life as a rifle round, but now can be fired from an AR pistol. Still, I give Gottlieb more credit than I do most mainstream journalists. And I think I see a more worrying message hidden in Gottlieb’s statement. At the risk of attempting to speak for Gottlieb, which I would never presume to do, I will explain what his quote may imply.

“Almost any hunting rifle bullet [capable of being fired from a pistol platform] will go through [type II soft] body armor, so you could [if we were to ignore the component classification of core design and jacket weights] prohibit almost any rifle bullet [capable of being fired from a pistol platform]. ” What he’s saying is that M855 is on the chopping block, and if we were to use the ability to puncture type II soft body armor as a rule, than all 5.56 and .223 would disappear.

In other words, we do have something to actually fear. The BATFE’s attempt to choke off the supply of available M855, using the LEOPA’s language, is nothing. There could be far worse to come.

Consider this. If the M855 ban passes muster this time, based on the skewed logic that these bullets pose an extraordinary risk to LEOs, than that decision could be used as precedent to widen the ban and ban all rifle bullets that could be fired from pistols. Goodbye .223, 7.62×39, 5.56, .30 Carbine, .308, 5.45…. How long is this list?

So what do we do?

We continue to fight. We protest the reclassification of M855, if it indeed gets passed. We plan our arguments more effectively. If we attack the logic of this ban based on our own wishful thinking, we deserve what we get.

If you would like to contact the various powers-that-be, use an argument that will withstand basic tests of logic. This is one of the best letters I’ve seen to date, and it addresses the real issue: banning M855 in the name of officer safety simply makes no sense.

Allow your voice to be heard clearly. Don’t give in. Never give in. Stand. Fight. But for our sake, make sure you know what the hell you are talking about.

{ 74 comments… add one }
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  • james March 17, 2015, 3:35 am

    First off. You say that the lead content doesn’t matter. I think you need to read the ATF guide lines again. There has to be a certain amount of lead ,steel and copper or other components that would make it armored piercing. Now if they get away with this ban, what’s going to be next. There is a lot of ammo out there that can go through armored vest. The new so called green ammo is one . They have other plans for this ban, it’s just the beginning.

  • J.D. March 11, 2015, 9:32 am

    Read the tea leaves gentleman. Ask yourselves why this constitution shredding administration is so hell bent on disarming the law abiding public. One can only guess. What does our government know that we don’t ? I truly believe that all out anarchy is on the horizon. We are poised for an all out economic meltdown of cataclysmic proportion. The current regime fears this more than you can imagine. Keep your guns close and your ammo closer. Take care of your family and put a real plan together. We all need to wake up !!!!!!!!!!!

  • Joe March 11, 2015, 6:55 am

    Tip of the iceberg men, Just the tip.

  • hoochbear March 10, 2015, 9:00 pm

    Have we gone full circle? It’s now March 10, 2015.
    What is still legal as of today?

    • Administrator March 10, 2015, 9:03 pm

      The ATF dropped it today. For now it’s over.

      • Homer Yates March 10, 2015, 11:17 pm

        They might have dropped it however it is not going away. Obama isn’t and will not let this pass. He feels that the only people who can’t stop him, congress, are not willing to push it all the way. So far he has won and will do his best to ” Change” American.

    • Russ March 11, 2015, 2:21 am

      They backed out.

  • J762 March 10, 2015, 7:46 pm

    I need everyone’s thoughts on this problem!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Can you describe for me a hypothetical design for a core that is NOT “constructed entirely” from steel (or one of the other prohibited metals)????????????

    If a separate material (in this case lead) means that it is considered to be a separate core, then it stands to reason that a core which is not “constructed entirely” of steel could never exist. Yet the law’s reference to “constructed entirely” directly implies the existence of a core which does NOT meet the “constructed entirely” description. (I don’t think the trace metals issue would apply in this thought experiment.)

    The interpretation that a separate material is a separate core CONFLICTS with the law which implicitly supports the existence of a core NOT “constructed entirely” from steel. They can’t both be correct, which means the interpretation must be wrong!

    Does the above argument make sense, or is there a flaw I’m overlooking? Mr. Higginbotham, I’d especially like your thoughts on this.

  • Tim Crowe March 10, 2015, 11:45 am

    I am always ready to be edified. Where in the United States Constitution does it say the Citizenry cannot have and bear “armor piercing” ammunition (which is a 20th century term) ?? If it is military ordnance, the Citizenry can possess it. Any other argument is a red herring for Barry Soetoro, Charles Schumer, and the others of that ilk.

  • cl March 9, 2015, 9:34 pm

    With the ban of lead in CA (and of course other states will have to follow)… what, pray tell will you be making bullets out of? Copper (whoops…..isn’t that in the def above)….. And the cheap WOLF ammo has a steel core (because its CHEAP). I don’t shoot it because it is a fire hazard (hit a rock with lead it spats, hit it with steel it sparks). This whole ammo ban is just another camel nose under the tent.

    • J762 March 10, 2015, 7:03 pm

      WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Wolf does not have a steel core!

      What it has is some steel in the jacket. It has a bi-metal jacket made of steel with a copper coating to reduce barrel wear. You should do some research before you post false information. We already have way too many gun owners on forums getting the facts wrong.

      • John May 26, 2015, 1:07 pm

        Thank you for calling out blatant misinformation

  • Southrider March 9, 2015, 6:49 pm

    Not all 5.56mm is an M855 (presumed in the list above).. There’s a heck of a lot more 55gr FMJ out there than the M855. Is the data more detailed or are you presuming?

  • Bill March 9, 2015, 5:25 pm

    Factual stats from the FBI below along with the web links

    In regards to the M855 ban proposition to help protect Police Officers it helps to have the facts. These numbers are Straight from the FBI database for 2013 (links beow)
    (Officers killed)
    1 Officer killed by a 5.56 (M855 is 5.56)
    20 Officers killed by a .223 (M855 is not .223)
    32 Officers killed with a 7.62×39
    35 Officers killed with a 12ga Shotgun
    92 Officers killed with a 9mm
    29 Officers killed with a .380
    67 Officers killed with a .40 S&W
    39 Officers killed with a .45 ACP

    officers killed in auto accidents 28
    (Officers assaulted or injured)
    1 Officers assaulted or injured with a 5.56
    0 Officers assaulted or injured with .223
    1 Officers assaulted or injured with 7.62×39
    4 Officers assaulted or injured with 7.62×51
    4 Officers assaulted or injured with 12ga Shotgun
    16 Officers assaulted or injured with 9mm
    1 Officers assaulted or injured with .380
    7 Officers assaulted or injured with .40
    6 Officers assaulted or injured with .45

    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/leoka/2013
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/leoka/2013/tables/table_94_fed_leos_k_and_a_extent_of_injury_of_victim_officer_by_type_of_weapon_2009-2013.xls
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/leoka/2013/tables/table_89_leos_asltd_and_injured_type_of_fa_and_size_of_ammo_by_distance_between_victim_officer_and_offender_2013.xls
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/leoka/2013/tables/table_28_leos_fk_state_and_agency_by_type_of_weapon_2013.xls
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/leoka/2013/tables/table_35_leos_fk_with_firearms_type_of_firearm_and_size_of_ammunition_2004-2013.xls

  • Greg March 9, 2015, 3:53 pm

    Just curious, if the current law exempts the M855, and the proposed law removes that exemption making it illegal to manufacture and sell (not to possess), where does that leave M855A1? Is it already banned because it was not exempted by name? How could it have been exempted as it did not exist when the law was written? or is it considered “the same” as M855 when it clearly is not.

  • Sandy Brygider March 9, 2015, 2:07 pm

    ALL THIS BS ABOUT BANNING AP .223 AND NOBODY HAS GOTTEN IT CORRECT YET?
    That’s right. and this is why.
    The BATF banned all AP ammo chambered in a pistol, period. This includes .223 (courtesy of Thompson Center’s Contender Pistol), and also 7.62×39 since the surplus Chinese ammo at the time was all steel core AP, and there was an obscure manufacturer in the northwest (I cannot recall the name) who made more than the required amount of individual pistols in 7.62×39 and so BATF considers it a “pistol” round.
    Surprisingly, then and now, .308 AP is banned (Thompson Center again) but.30-06 AP (that’s the black tip stuff) is not and is available as surplus even through the Civilian Marksmanship Program. Go figure!
    Now, along comes a domestic importer who wishes to import some foreign made M855 which is known by its Nato name of SS109. This because American producers aren’t selling the M855 to anyone but police & military and it is impossible to find on the domestic market. and the domestic market is clamoring fort. Their reasoning for requesting a variance to the regulation is as follows:
    If a civilian shooter is to compete in the National Matches (Camp Perry) they must compete with the standard issue service round at the time and BINGO, that’s the M855 which has just become the standard US Issue Service Round.
    And that’s the reason, nothing to do with anything else. I’m surprised nobody has brought this up but I am 67 years old and remember when it happened as I was in the mail-order ammo business at the time, and it was a pretty big deal – I guess there is nobody left old enough at BATF to remember how and when?
    And surprisingly .30-06 AP Black Tip is available and blows away any M855 or M855A1 round that I know of.
    Just another case of anti-gun regulators drafting rules, regulations, and laws that make no sense because they are totally ignorant when it comes to firearms or ammunition.

  • Paul Morgan March 9, 2015, 1:54 pm

    Great article! I agree completely.
    We can do more damage to the cause with emotional and in accurate responses rather than with accurate and specific language. My concern since first reading the BATF letter has been, it will leave the door open to eventually banning all “bullets” over certain weights and of a certain.construction while the current administration is in power. Notice my wording “certain”, it can be anything.
    We must deal with the language of this new proposed ruling to assure it is written in a very specific way in order to remove ambiguous statements which could lead to further interpretation. Example, all of the current frenzie over a missing “a” or. “or” in the current letter. It matters a lot.

    • hoochbeaar March 9, 2015, 8:20 pm

      We have got to deal with facts & facts only. Intent in a law is subject to interpretation. Heaven knows the road to Hell is paved with some good intentions. Emotion will get us nowhere, and that includes just invoking the 2nd Amendment, or trying to convince me that SHTF is just around the corner, or advocating fully auto arms are OK. I will agree that nowadays, gun haters want to first ban specific ammo, but there is no doubt in my mind they would next want to ban the principal firearm that fires it, then any and all firearms that fire it. Be ready with legal, because you will do the rest of us no freaking good if you are incarcerated. Like Tip ONeal said: All Politics is Local!. Firearms freedom starts in your home community. If you cannot deal rationally at the local & state levels, how do you think you will do in dealing irrationally at the Federal level. Really. Oh, btw accounts of actual firearm use by citizens in defending their life & property ought to get more attention. Aware of any incidents in your town that would compare with NRA’s “The Armed Citizen.?” Like Sgt Joe Friday said “Just the facts, ma’m.” Oh, I do favor a form of Universal Background Checks. Dont get all hot and bothered. UBC should consist of 1/ proper legal citizenship and 2/ absence of violent weapons convictions. and 3/ general sanity. The government should have to prove an adverse reason whether for firearms or drivers license. Still working on this one. But abolish all national data bases of firearms ownership and ban use of Social Security card for any identification purpose other than Social Security and Federal taxes. For probable cause, 4/ Stop and Frisk, so long as practiced on a non-discriminatory basis. and 5/ neighborhood sweep by drug dogs & handlers suitably backed up. A drug dog should not discriminate.

  • Ken Carwile March 9, 2015, 1:08 pm

    Good article. I posted some similar info on a local and got the same lame steel tip BS but I’ll keep at it. Thanhs

  • Greg March 9, 2015, 12:35 pm

    I believe our best defense is written right into the law is the intent. The ammo in question was not designed for use in a handgun. There are a lot of things that when used not as intended would be illegal. Not sure if the 22 cal exemption would help.

    • John May 26, 2015, 12:52 pm

      Unfortunately, read “…may be…”

      NOT “…intended…”

      Sucks, but there it is.

  • Stephen Thomas March 9, 2015, 12:30 pm

    I really feel things have gotten out of hand with this. We are a free country not a dictatorship by any part of the government. We have the right to defend ourselves as we see fit not how we are allowed to. We have slowly allowed the government to dictate how we are to live. We need to take back our country. Why do we allow the government to spend our tax dollars without question ? We need to hold them accountable. If we would unite and stand together as people we could do great things together.

  • Vince March 9, 2015, 12:12 pm

    http://youtu.be/F3QlRczpTNs
    If the safety of LEO is the only issue with the M855,
    then after you watch this video, you will see that when things are taken away or controlled,
    The brain can come up with substitutes that can cause just as much damage,
    If unable to visit video. Just google Truck Door, Craziest shotgun rounds, You will see things that will take body armory
    to a different level, and criminals will never stop no matter how much one takes away, put enough energy behind any bullet,
    and it will go through body armor…..the list is long

  • Russell Sonner March 9, 2015, 11:53 am

    The whole thing is BS. The law itself is illegal. It infringes on my Constitutional right to bear arms. The Constitution makes it illegal for government or anyone else to deny my unrestricted access to any Arm of my choosing. Wake up fools, “you strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel”.

  • tom March 9, 2015, 10:41 am

    This is like arguing the jewish purity law and just how much jewish blood is required to authorize being sent
    to the death camp.

    Gun laws, ammo laws, Gun registration, are UNLAWFULL. PERIOD
    Stop compromising away your RIGHTS.

    The enemy is EVIL, criminal TRATOR.

  • Cole Dedhand March 9, 2015, 10:40 am

    Your opinion is that there can be 75 cores and if one is steel the projectile is armor piercing.

    And those of us who read the plain meaning of the word “entirely” are wrong?

    Your argument is not convincing nor conclusive.

  • Jonathon Tuttle March 9, 2015, 10:37 am

    Finally, someone points out the how and why of the BATFE’s authority to ban the M855. I read one other article that pointed to the GCA’s ‘ambiguity’ in it’s wording. but they didn’t say what that was and, not being a lawyer, I couldn’t see it. Thank you Dave!
    PS – This just reinforces my mistrust of Congress and lawyers. They say they are doing something for you, but in the end, they are just trying to screw you.

  • fonzie crain March 9, 2015, 10:35 am

    i have put all kinds of thought into this and here’s what a nobody has to say ; i love ak 74’s and have owned 2 for years. as you know the batfe just banned the 60 grain fmj , the imported from russia type , supposedly for the same reason. so , i ordered a case of it. i have been around for 64 years and can tell you this , they will ban it and that’s that, my question is , if you kill a man , do you really think he’s going to care what you shot him with? it is not going to make a difference, he;s going to be just as dead. do i think the batfe should ban this and other types of ammo? no, i think it’s unconstitutional and an abuse of power, but , as i said before it;s going to happen.

  • Infidel762 March 9, 2015, 10:33 am

    Bad news from the Supreme Court:

    BREAKING: DOL Wins High Court Battle Over Agency Rulemaking
    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that federal agencies don’t have to go through formal rule-making to make significant changes to rules interpreting regulations, siding with the Department of Labor and overturning a D.C. Circuit ruling that nixed a reclassification of mortgage loan officers as overtime-eligible.

  • David Jones March 9, 2015, 9:56 am

    I think we are missing one critical point of the GCA – it defines an armor piercing ammo as having a projectile greater than 22 cal that …. The projectile on a 223 is 22 cal and therefore by definition not armor piercing.

    • J762 March 10, 2015, 7:15 pm

      WRONG!!!

      The part you reference that talks about the caliber (.22cal) of the projectile is paragraph ii which covers a projectile “designed or intended” for use in a handgun. The applicable paragraph in this case is paragraph i which is not limited to a particular caliber size and covers a projectile which “may” be used in a handgun. A projectile only has to meet the definition in one of the paragraphs to be prohibited, not both.

  • Jay March 9, 2015, 9:33 am

    This should be a stark reminder of the state that government overreach has put us in! We all have to remember just as the article weighs out! The obama administration is using this as a start to the finish. One step at a time because he was stopped in his direct gun ban and mostly in his magazine ban. We also have to remember that many manufactures are making solid copper projectiles and those were developed because of the lead scare, copper is listed in the armour piercing category. The obama administration shut down our last lead smelter under the guise of the EPA junk and now all lead is imported, that was his first move. Then if you remember he, through the UN signed the papers to stop importing weapons and within those papers is also ammunition, that was his second move. This is just one of his many plans to do one thing, get your firearms and or make them useless because you cant get ammunition for them. We can almost be assured because of the current administration there wont be any grandfather clause in the law and all of us that have any of this ammunition will automatically be declared criminals if we don’t turn it in! The government is made up of a bunch of school book lawyers who love to twist and put new meanings to words to cloud any issue at hand. We as Patriotic Americans can all see the writing on the wall, even without our glasses and it’s not pretty. As a past president once said “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time”, you know the rest of the quote! Our only real hope is in each other and our belief in the America our forefathers made and developed for us not any government! Our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution are not just a piece of paper, they are the corner stones of America! They are us and we are the very reason they exist!

  • YankeeBill March 9, 2015, 9:24 am

    My two cents: I understand most of the technicalities of the particular bullets in question, but I have also been around long enough to know (sadly) that if big brother wants to keep something from the American public, or take it away, it will. By any means necessary, and for any reason they deem valid. It will be up to those Americans, whether it be the individual or some pro-second amendment group, to fight back in the courts. We all know the chances of the little guy prevailing against the U.S. Government are slim to none, especially in today’s courts. “We’re the government and we’re here to help”. Remember, Obama said he has a pen and a phone. He has well over a year to make good on that implied threat.

  • Hunter March 9, 2015, 6:27 am

    While I applaud your ability to break down the information about the law and the ammo in question, I want to call you out on something very important! Yes you’re correct about the ammo, and the law as written. You’re probably correct in saying that it’s all but a done deal whether by the ATF or executive order. However your attitude about giving up yet another weapon over a type of ammo is absolutely appauling!
    It’s that kind of attitude that greases the slippery slope were already headed down. Thank you for your service, defending our country and our rights, but save your opinions of what we the people should be allowed to own for some other Centrist or Leftist appeasing forum. As a law abiding citizen, If I want to own a full auto “modern manufactured” weapon I should be able to. If I want to own an oversized pistol based on a AR15 design with a muzzle blast that would blind me, and make my eardrums explode if I shot it in close quarters that’s my perogative. If I want to load it up with a 100 round drum of armor piercing rounds of depleted uranium 5.56 rounds I should be allowed to. That being said, if I or any other individual should harm anyone or commit a crime with that weapon then for my God’s sake please charge me to the fullest extent of the law, and take away all my personal rights. But until that happens leave me, and my rights alone!

  • Benjamin Yoder March 9, 2015, 5:43 am

    Why do we try and argue semantics of bullet design to defend our rights. The answer is simple. The constitution was wrote with the term “inalienable rights” for a reason. Our founding fathers experienced tyrannical government and understood the importance of the people having as much power as necessary to ensure the system remained a government for the people by the people. Essentially the ultimate check and balance embedded into our system. When, in this day and age, one could argue the viewpoint of our government having strong resemblance to an Oligarchy in nature now, more than ever, it is important to uphold the constitution as it was written. Why do citizens need access to small arms and ammo of this nature? Quite simply for the same reason our military and government agencies feel the need to stock it themselves. The necessity for an even playing ground to prevent oppression takes the greater good always to the occasional tragic attack by derranged citizens. Period. Trying to create a state of living in a bubble of rules and laws to prevent derranged people from committing atrocities simply will not work. Lets be honest this isnt about law enforcement officers safety its a power grab. What percentage of officers wounded in the line of duty are actually wounded by “m855” ammo? Lol I bet less than 1%. Why dont we argue from that standpoint? When true numbers like those are exposed it brings light to this being a power grab more than concern for safety.

  • awceez March 9, 2015, 3:59 am

    Seems that the gun/ammo BANs all emanate from the FederaL GOV’T or other Government bodies.
    THE ACTUAL intended TARGETS OF THE 2ND AMENDMENT! They are not interested in police officers’ or my safety.
    I Don’t understand why all these 2nd proponent authors are afraid to point this out.??
    I mean – If we ever had a dictator tyrant admin’ in D.C. ??

  • Sean Brannon March 9, 2015, 3:20 am

    I disagree with the logic of the law (as much of it as I’ve read here). Again it should come down to intent. Both the intent of the law, and the gun owner. The law is designed to prevent armor-piercing handgun ammo, not rifle-caliber. BATFE simply needs a ruling that states putting M855 into an AR pistol is illegal. Using their logic, all someone has to do is (stupidly) produce a small batch of .50 Barrett-, .30-06, [insert rifle caliber here], chambered pistols (derringer-style, single-shot, whatever) and then we’d in the shit as then they could ban a huge range of non-lead projectiles.

    Separately, what about places that want to ban the use of lead alltogether? What reasonable alloy would be left that wouldn’t run afoul of LEOPA?

  • LarryW March 9, 2015, 3:03 am

    I have to commend the author for several things:
    1) cutting through the BS with FACTS. Facts are not opinion; there is ONLY 1 set of facts about the law and about this bullet
    2) calling out Fox News for a (yet another) bald-faced lie. Wow – that’s gonna piss wingers off more than the facts about the M855 and the laws.

    If only everyone on the Right were as reasoned, thoughtful and fact-based as the author, there would be far few problems between libs and cons. I’m a far-left lib who has 11 Class III NFA licences, and I appreciate this author’s insight on the issue at hand.
    NOW!!! If he would only address the supposed UN problem, FEMA camps and gun confiscation paranoia in the same way.

    Oh – wait! Who’s that at my door?? It’s OBAMA! He wants my guns and has FEMA and DHS agents with him to take my gold and silver and throw me into a FEMA camp! OMG! We are doomed! LOL!

    • Will Drider March 9, 2015, 11:36 pm

      Please clarify: 11 NFA Licences.
      1. There are only three types. Class 1 is for an importer of NFA firearms. Class 2 is for a manu I just don’t understand what your refering to.just don’t understand what your refering to.acturer of NFA firearms. Class 3 is for a dealer in NFAfirearms.
      2. There are eleven types of Federal Firearms Licences.
      3. There are NFA Tax Stamps of which you may have elveven.
      I’m glad a self described lefty lib is enjoying the 2A, You added the NFA line to support your position, expertise and background. I don’t understand what you mean.
      Respectfully, WD

      • John May 26, 2015, 12:38 pm

        …guessing he’s probably referring to the tax stamps. Unless he’s just blowing smoke to make a joke…
        Lase the 2nd part of his post with Mk I Eyeball and make your own opinion…

  • Eric Holder March 6, 2015, 1:54 pm

    When you look specifically at the materials listed, (for armor piercing LEOPA) I do not know of many projectiles commercially available that are made up with PRIMARILY these materials with the exception of copper. It says .22 so any .223/5.56 exceeds the specification in bullet diameter. Also the term “trace” is not defined as a percentage of the total weight of the projectile. I guess ATF will use a definition in the Websters Dictionary if it suits their needs. It seems the term “armor piercing” is also semantics because armor could be a single layer of kevlar or whatever……also not defined. Just remember that the pen is mightier than the sword. All we need to do is write a lot of letters and send a lot of emails to the US Government and this will all work out nice. If that does not work we need to all get out and vote, I mean voting has really helped things out…….. we have President Obama and ATF regulating bullets. Are they regulating marijuana or the DEA?

  • f.t. March 5, 2015, 3:48 pm

    The ammo will be banned, by executive order if not by BATF. Its a done deal in Obama’s head.
    I would rather see all AR-15 type “pistols” banned instead of the ammo.
    As a 67 year old shooter and former 40 year employee of the criminal Justice System, as well as a former Marine Vietnam vet, I know a little bit about guns.
    This ammo ban will happen.
    It will effect more people that banning all AR-15 type “pistols” that really don’t have any real place in the lawful gun world as far as I am concerned. I have had guns since I was 12 and I know right from wrong, what makes sense and what doesn’t and about rights.
    I don’t know one single person who has a “AR pistol” and I don’t see any legitimate use for them, especially if its going to cost so many others their ammo for their rifles.
    Ban those stupid pistols instead.

    • Megalith March 5, 2015, 8:45 pm

      The only legitimate reason for owning an AR15 pistol was getting around the $50 federal stamp required to own a SBR(short barreled rifle) AR15. That’s it. Then came along the Sig Arm Brace, that just happens to operate and look exactly like a short adjustable stock that can also be strapped to your forearm. It’s no surprise the ATF and Obama came down hard on these AR15 pistol morons. Millions are paying the price for what a few thousand have done.

      • Mark N. March 6, 2015, 12:02 am

        I thought the tax stamp was $200 and a proctological exam….
        By the way, these pistols also avoid California’s (and other state’s) ban on SBRs. (We can’t have machine guns, silencers or Barrett .50s either.) I think you also have to understand the history. The government wanted to ban machine guns like the Thompson because rum runners and other gangsters were using them to commit crimes, but it did not think it could ban them out right without violating the Second Amendment. Or at least the Attorney General, in testimony before Congress said so. So it instead enacted a tax that was approximately the same as the cost of a Thompson–i.e., a 100% tax. Since that same potential exists today, it is easier to ban ammo than to ban a particularly useless toy.

      • Michael E. Hensley March 9, 2015, 4:23 am

        Simple thing to do is purchase a stock and when the SHTF then install on the AR Pistol. At that Juncture it really will not matter about the ATF or any of those other 3 letter groups and it is simple and quick to install. It is BTW 200.00 to Feds for Tax stamp for the Pistol with full stock

      • John May 26, 2015, 12:10 pm

        Only $50? REALLY?

        THAT would truly be a bunch of cheap-ass “mother-effery” to potentially cost so many of us our choice of ammunition!

    • Will Drider March 7, 2015, 1:05 am

      There are many gun grabbers that love it when people with firearms are so willing to give up the other peoples firearms of choice. They will gladly take your support to grab other guns now and come back for your later. Read the world history country by country on registration, then restriction, then confiscation by type (evil guns first then work their way down through SA rifles, SA pistols, then all pistols, all rifles above .22. Last call will be all .22 an shotguns. By your personal history, you protected all citizens rights. NOW YOU SELL YOUR RIGHTS, FREEDOM, LIBERTY as quickly as you discard those of others whether you intend to or not.

      • DRAINO March 7, 2015, 10:43 am

        HERE, HERE, Mr. Drider!!!! Well said!!!!!!! well said!! Just because I don’t agree with someone else’s choices, doesn’t mean their choice should be outlawed. I don’t agree with a homosexual life style, but I surely don’t think it should be outlawed.

        • BeardedWonder March 9, 2015, 6:10 pm

          I heard that…

    • Danny March 9, 2015, 5:05 pm

      Thank you for your service, but comments like that are part of the problem…The 2nd Amendment does not say which you can/can not own. It’s simple English as all other rights. What you find as “don’t need this/that” is your opinion as everyone else has.

      I do not own one of these “pistols” but I wouldn’t restrict anyone else’s choice to purchase one either. I’m not the type that thinks “I know what’s better for you”.

      Bans on this or that will only be followed by Law Abiding Citizens, criminals don’t follow laws, that’s why they are called what they are. If one restriction/ban is put in place then others will surely follow. Because this administration can not get the bans they want, the next way if doing it is the ammunition.

      If it’s M855 then it might be M193 or 30-06 etc etc…they found a loop hole and will exploit it when it benefits them. In this case it benefits them cause they can’t get a outright ban on the most popular sporting/defensive semi-final rifle…

      People are adults, can choose what is and what isn’t good for them, to suggest we should have or not a place for a AR15 Pistol is like saying we should have a corvette cause it capable of go faster than the speed limit….it’s all about returning accountability to the individual.

      • John May 26, 2015, 12:33 pm

        Well said, and I agree….to a point.

        People ARE adults (whether they act childish or not); and people CAN choose. But here is where we diverge: WE the people no longer get to choose; it’s the politicians who do the choosing. You can say that “…we choose because we elect our politicians…”, but this is no longer strictly true. The higher up within the government structure you go, the less the average citizen’s voice is heard, and this applies IN PARTICULAR to elections. SCOTUS has either been bought (I hope not) or they are idealists to the point of being delusional, but when they upheld Citizens United they placed the majority of the electoral process within the hands of people like the Koch brothers. It was already bad enough, given the whole theory of the Electoral College…this made it ridiculous, to the point that now there is a major study through Princeton University which shows the U.S. is no longer a functioning democracy, or even a republic: It is an oligarchy. I can only hope the ability to “choose” is someday returned to us.

        And be careful of the automotive comparison…our detractors will (rightly so) point out that the intended purpose and/or manufacture of an automobile is not to kill. Like it or not, that’s why firearms were created. And still are. We cannot effectively argue with the “control everything” nuts on this basis. In THEIR Utopia, once they’re successful at grabbing my guns, they’ll come after all my kitchen knives….

  • teebonicus March 5, 2015, 3:36 pm

    Instead of complicating things, why don’t we stick to the actual issue? The ’86 law prohibits armor piercing ammunition INTENDED to be used in handguns. M855 isn’t intended to be used in handguns, certain handguns are INTENDED to use M855.

    This is cart-before-the-horse obfuscation.

    Nothing more,

    And it should fail precisely because of that.

    • Dave Higginbotham March 5, 2015, 4:44 pm

      More wishful thinking.

      The LEOPA of 85 REMOVED intention. That’s why I’m writing this! Too much misinformation!

      Read people! The GCA had the word “intended.” The LEOPA of 85 removed that term and replaced it with “may be used.”

      We can only work with what we’ve been given. That is a stone cold fact.

  • Keith Green March 5, 2015, 2:05 pm

    Very good information. Thank you. I used the letter you linked to send to the ATF and my representatives however I live in MD.lol

  • Renov8 March 5, 2015, 12:35 pm

    When the Fraternal Order of Police comes out and says this ammo has no effect on LE and has not been a problem in the past…..that says it all. The argument posed by the ATF has no merit whatsoever. None. Clearly the intent is to start the process of slowly but surely banning any and all rifle rounds which can be shot thru a pistol. Period! They did this with 7n6 and no one seemed to take notice. Well guess what, we have taken notice now, considering this is the most popular round being used today, not only because its readily available, but because it is relatively inexpensive and, accurate. The m193 round has a copper jacket and an all lead core, will compromise level iii and level iiia body armor. Is that next?
    In another article I read on this proposed ban, the writer tells us that in order to get to the bottom of this, we need to make sure we ask the right questions, cause if you don’t, you won’t get the right answers. I found that to be very telling.
    If this ban should go through, we will be setting ourselves up for the next one, all the way to extinction. I think you all know this.
    Someone once said to me “appearances have a stronger influence on the minds of the people than the facts presented by reality.”

    Welcome to reality.

    • DaveGinOly March 9, 2015, 4:43 pm

      We set our right up for extinction with the acceptance of restrictions on fully automatic weapons and short- barreled rifles, the acceptance of definitions of “sporting use” and “armor-piercing,” and by generally allowing stealthy encroachments that were each a foot in the door to additional infringements, each based upon the precedent set by the last, and by accepting the principle that our government (even its courts) can define for us the limits of our rights. It was necessary that we deny the principle that our right can be infringed upon, as we were warned.

      “Because it is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of Citizens, and one of the noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. The free men of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise, and entangled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle. We revere this lesson too much soon to forget it.”
      James Madison’s “Memorial and Remonstrance”

  • Mark N. March 5, 2015, 1:43 am

    While there is a steel component to the core of the M855, that core is not *entirely* made of steel. From the very language you quote from the statute, it is necessary for a projectile to be AP that 1) it may be used in a hand gun AND (not or) 2) the projectile or its core is made entirely of….steel. The core of the M855 is made of both steel and lead. Therefore it is not an AP round. For your argument to be correct, the statute would have to read that the core is made “entirely or in part…” The statute does not talk about bullets having two cores, therefore one must consider the core in its entirety. I have yet to read the ATF’s paper, but apparently they ignore the word “entirely” in their evaluation–as do you. This is not a proper method of statutory interpretation, which requires that every word in a statute be given effect.

    • Dave Higginbotham March 5, 2015, 11:40 am

      Mark. You clearly didn’t understand my piece. Thanks for commenting, but you’re flat out wrong. Their is no singular construction of the grammatical “core” that would suggest it is only one core per bullet. The patent drawings, which were created by people who both love and understand projectile nomenclature, have clearly listed the steel portion as a core. You are the exact audience I intend to reach with this piece. I’d ask you to read it again, and–if you think I’m that far off–explain to me how, syntactically, this use of the term “core” is singular.

      • Odysseus M Tanner March 5, 2015, 3:23 pm

        The thing is, the armor piercing definition really just assumes there’s a jacket and a single core, which if intended to be armor piercing would be composed entirely of the hard metals listed, otherwise the definition would’ve specified a percentage allowed for lead. If we try to avoid the issue by making a core with only 1% lead and the rest steel (or other) that clearly violates the intent, so ultimately I think you’re correct in considering the component of the core “a core”. On the other hand, a core with 1% steel and the rest lead would also be “armor piercing.” The definition just didn’t anticipate the schizoid M855, and is incomplete.

        However, in (ii) we see the anticipation of a a larger jacket, which would increase the mass of the “penetrator metal”, and the maximum allowed is 25%. I’ve heard that the lead in M855 is 80%. This is the operative portion of the definition we might use to some effect, seeing as how (i) does not address lead-to-penetrator ratio: if the intent is to limit the amount of penetrator material to 25% of the mass of the projectile, then M855 does NOT meet the definition of “armor piercing.”

        Look at it this way, let’s make a gedanken experiment: Imagine we redesign the M855 bullet and replace the steel with the same mass and composition of the jacket, which would be some alloy which is mostly copper. Since copper is heavier than iron there’ll actually be slightly more lead in the bullet. This bullet would be legal under the definition. Would there really be any difference in terminal effect between it and the M855?

        Maybe someone with a knack for it could make a picture of the legal copper bullet and show it side-by-side with the M855. That could be a powerful argument against the ban.

        • Odysseus M Tanner March 5, 2015, 9:08 pm

          PS. I have been unable to verify the lead mass is 80%. We need the actual specs because it could be very close to the minimum of 75%. As for the reference above stating the bullet has a “32 grain lead core”, that would be more than 50% and I find this hard to believe. We can see visually from the cross sectional view that the volume of the bullet is roughly 50% lead, which has an atomic weight of 82, as opposed to 26 and 29 for iron (which is nearly the same as steel) and copper, respectively. This would indicate about 2/3 of the mass is lead, which falls short of the 75% minimum but that’s just a rough estimate. Anyone know how we can find out the actual mass of lead in the bullet?

      • m March 5, 2015, 11:56 pm

        I very clearly DO understand your piece, I just think that you ignore the plain language of the statute, just as the ATF did in its analysis. You and I agree–core is singular. Therefore, it matters not that there are two parts to the core of the M855–its (singular) core is part lead and part steel. It is most certainly not “entirely” steel. There is nothing in the language of the statute, and I would bet dollars to donuts that there is nothing in the legislative history either, that for a moment suggests that the Congress ever considered the possibility that a particular bullet could be construed as having two (or more) separate cores.In fact, it is very clear that the Congress intended to exempt rifle ammunition, since it recognized that rifle ammunition easily defeats most ballistic vests. For your interpretation to work, the language would have to read “a projectile or one or more projectile cores….” That’s not what it says.

        It would appear that the 238 members of the House who wrote to the ATF agree that the ATF’s interpretation is suspicious, and the NRA and ASAF thinks so also. And by the way, I have been practicing law for almost 30 years, and am very familiar with the rules of statutory interpretation. And the purpose of this statute was to outlaw the use of hard metal “solids” pistol ammunition.

      • Will Drider March 7, 2015, 12:24 am

        Not so fast with the grammar lesson. “Core” is not strictly singular. From Merriam-Webster
        h  :an arrangement of a course of studies that combines under basic topics material from subjects conventionally separated and aims to provide a common background for all students 
        2 a :a basic, essential, or enduring part (as of an individual, a class, or an entity)  
        “Core” a noun, as properly used in the dictionary clearly shows Core as the representation of many parts.

        In any technical field you must have a physical encasement in order to have a “core” . In our case it is the jacket material. In this case what is put in it: a cyclinder extrusion of steel and a cyclinder extrusion of lead. Two seperatly manufacture materials that truely are not and never have been a core (s). Select what ever jacketing process you like and encase the two dissimilar metal cyclinders. NOW you have the encasement and EVERYTHING WITHIN THAT jacket is the CORE. Simply put, when you core an apple you don’t core stem, core seeds, core fiber. It is taken whole. A Nosler Partition bullet truely has two cores as they are seperated by jacket material. This has a U.S.Patent recognized by the Gov. This would surely trump some second hand drawing with assumption on nomenclature as to what a multi-core bullet is.
        The core area within the cartridge projectile is not entirely steel.

      • Patriot March 8, 2015, 10:33 am

        I think many may misunderstand the thought put forward that anything can have more than one core. The earth has one core made up of the outer and inner parts. An apple has one core made up of pulp, cellulose and seeds. These bullets have one core madeup of lead and steel. Therefore, the core is not made entirely of either. To pretend to separate a core is the same as a politician or blogger having two core beliefs, one for more gun control and another for less.

        • Joe March 9, 2015, 10:00 am

          Well said. The author’s doublespeak does nothing for our cause.

          A bullet has a core.

          That said, the laws and definitions about armor piercing ammunition need to be revised and/or repealed along ‘sporting purposes’ language and all the other garbage legislation that allows BATFE arbitrary rule-making authority.

          • Blasted Cap March 9, 2015, 4:21 pm

            Or we can look at the Military designation of this round which is pretty clear. It is labeled as a “steel core penetrator round”. For once the military got it’s head out of jargon neutral and stated specifically what the round was intended to do. Penetrate light obstacles or barriers including soft body armor, then penetrate the intended target. Pretty simple and straight forward.
            Nobody said squat when they banned the Barnes banded solids in .223 up to .458 and that was homogeneous brass round. I guess they could use that as an argument for all the copper solid rounds.

      • DaveGinOly March 9, 2015, 3:07 pm

        I think he does understand your piece, and I think I do too.

        “a projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely from one or a combination of…”

        I’ll break that down a bit so we’re just considering the “projectile core” and its construction:
        “a projectile core which is constructed entirely from one or a combination of…”
        You made much about the missing article “a” before “projectile core.” However, because of the use of “or,” we can knock out “projectile or” and still have a proper sentence only if the article remains. The sentence, “The term ‘armor-piercing ammunition’ means projectile core…” Is not correct without the article.

        Putting the entire sentence together (referencing only the core), it reads:
        “The term ‘armor-piercing ammunition’ means a projectile core which is constructed entirely from one or a combination of…”
        We can trim that down to refer only to multi-part cores by knocking out “one or”:
        “The term ‘armor-piercing ammunition’ means a projectile core which is constructed entirely from a combination of…”
        (Note that “entirely” modifies “constructed,” so it must remain in the sentence. I mention this to prevent an argument being raised that “entirely” modifies “one” and not “combination.” This argument would be grammatically unsound. Test: How is the core constructed? It is constructed ENTIRELY from…)
        The M855 core does not have a core “constructed entirely from a combination of” the named elements and/or compounds that follow in the description. The M855 bullet has a STEEL AND LEAD core, a combination not contemplated within the definition of “armor-piercing bullet.”

        The term “constructed entirely” refers to the entire core, and not merely to a component part. The law describes a “core” that has, or can have, more than one part – the definition of “core” must refer to the entire core, and not merely to a part of it (the statute does not say, for instance, “core or cores” as it would if it contemplated considering parts of the entire core as separate cores). The M855 has a “core” (as defined) constructed (in its entirety) of steel and lead, and is therefore not “constructed entirely” from one of the named elements/compounds nor is it “constructed entirely” from “a combination of” any two or more of them.

        • Ian March 9, 2015, 6:16 pm

          Indeed, the word “entirely” would have no practical meaning at all if parts of a core could themselves be considered a core. The word implies the existence of cores that are *not* “entirely” one metal — i.e., cores that consist of more than one metal in multiple parts, such as the core of the M855 — and which would therefore not be governed by this clause.

          The operative word in this clause is “entirely,” because it must mean there are cores not governed by this clause composed of multiple types of metal.

  • Will Drider March 5, 2015, 1:40 am

    I just reviewed a long list of rifle chamberings used in thompson Center and Remington XP 100. Factory and after market offerings are extensive and have been availadle for two decades. I never heard of the ATF trying to restrict them and there is no doubt most would have defeated the best body armor avail at that time. Most will do it today too!
    These handguns are single shot and filled a small nitch. Semi-auto pistols that have rifle chambers and magazines that hold politically incorrect capacities seem to be the targeted focus of this proposal. If it was just to stop the sale of one type of surplus ammo, I would not care. Its there stuff. BUT its never that simple. They will establish the pesidence an then restrict other cartridges that have simular preformance. Remember the scope of the last federal assault weapons ban. If the test standard is going to be 12 Ga steel plat at 600 yards a lot of standard ammo could be reclassified. Remember how fast some pistol ammo was reclassified as LE ONLY! Remember all the bad press on cop killer bullets? As this issue is only about eliminating the use of these cartridges against LE, how many time has this happened? This is like BATFE’s NFA registration as AOW for verticle fore girp on a handgun. I dare anyone to show me a court cases and convictions on it. Its been a BATFE MEMO for over eight years and never added to the Laws/regs/codes or the NFA. More anti gun actions implemented by a administration sidestepping the oversite of elected officials the will of “WE THE PEOPLE”

  • Paul Walker March 5, 2015, 1:15 am

    Let’s be careful. The Thompson Contender has a few different rifles rounds that can be shot from a pistol platform. The letter of the law can cut much deeper.

    • Philip Viverito March 9, 2015, 8:52 am

      I think the real issue is that the government is permitted to have weapons because we the people permit them to have weapons of any kind. The government’s right to arms comes from the people. Because we allow the government to bear arms we too have the right and duty to have access to the same arms as we are the government. The national militia is responsible to present itself properly armed by able-bodied citizens (age 18 to 64) as part of the government; because we are the essence of government. The very idea that the government (that’s us) can deny the people the right to bear arms is absolutely contrary to the framers’ ideas and ideals of what government is about. We can bear arms not necessarily to hunt but rather to defend the United States from threats foreign and domestic. The Second Amendment is about maintaining an armed population. The very idea that what weapons or what bullet is allowed is not even supportable by the nature and concept of the Second Amendment. To accept such arguments misses the whole point of the real issue.

      • TangoDown March 9, 2015, 1:00 pm

        VERY, very well said. Wish I’d beaten you to it. The Framers…God Bless them, tried rationalizing ALL the treasonist whims that could fail a country, much less a ‘young’ country. They did a FABULOUS job. What they COULD NOT foresee was how many would try to take it down on the most FRIVOLOUS, trivial, traitorous schemes by “those who supposedly love their country”. Damn, we should STILL have hangings in the town square!

      • Ron March 9, 2015, 9:40 pm

        Phillip Viverito for President!!!! I think that about covers it…..

      • Calvin Pi March 9, 2015, 10:34 pm

        “The Second Amendment is about maintaining an armed population.”

        I agree. We are letting our opponents define the debate by arguing the stuff isn’t armor piercing.

        The 2nd Amendment explicitly ties arms ownership to militia purposes, therefor military grade arms are the MOST protected of all. Any arm which is military grade, and any arms which can substitute for or serve as trainers for, military grade arms are protected, as are their accessories and ammunition. Air rifles are protected, because they serve as trainers.

        Armor piercing ammunition is military grade ammunition, so it is protected as a supply for the militia. That’s us.

        Large parts of GCA 1968 are unconstitutional. Probably the whole thing, but I haven’t read it many years. However, when it bans the import of weapons because they are not for sporting purposes, it clearly crosses the line. Banning military grade ammunition does as well. M855 ammunition is constitutionally protected precisely because it is military grade ammo, not despite it.

        Is M855 for shooting people? Of course it is. That is why it is protected. It doesn’t matter if it is armor piercing: It’s military ammo, so it’s protected.

        If you haven’t read “The Founders’ Second Amendment: Origins of the Right to Bear Arms” by Stephen P. Halbrook, I can strongly recommend it. Halbrook lays out what the Founders themselves said about the 2nd Amendment. What they said at the time, in writings published at the time to tell the public what they were doing with this Constitution and the Bill of Rights. It’s an book every gun owner should read.

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