Mayor Pete’s lies on Guns

Feb 18, 2020 | Featured

Dr. John Lott’s newest piece at on Mayor Pete Buttigieg starts this way:

One of the Democrats’ favorite talking points on gun control that we don’t need military weapons of war on America’s streets. Former mayor Pete Buttigieg has been the most effective of the presidential candidates at making this claim, because of his military background. If anyone knows whether a gun is a military weapon, it is surely an Afghanistan War veteran who was trained on these weapons.

Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) is the only other remaining candidate with military experience, having been a major in the Hawaii Army National Guard for 17 years, and she is the least outspoken about gun control.

 “As someone who trained on weapons of war, I can tell you that there are weapons that have absolutely no place in American cities or neighborhoods in peacetime, ever,” Buttigieg declared at the Miami Democratic Presidential Debate in June last year.

“I think the weapons of war can do no good in American neighborhoods,” Buttigieg told CNN’s “New Day” last August. “I trained on weapons that are similar to these. And they have one purpose, which is to destroy as much as possible, as quickly as possible. They have tactical uses in war zones. Since when are American cities and neighborhoods supposed to be war zones?”

It is a theme that he has pushed endlessly.

But there are a few problems with Buttigieg’s claims. First, he never had military training, let alone weapons training. He never even received leadership training. 

Naval officers typically go through four years at Annapolis or another military academy. Otherwise, they attend ROTC during college or complete Officer Candidate School as postgraduates. All of these programs involve extensive training. Instead, Buttigieg used a used little-known loophole — direct commission in the reserves — to skip all of the training that other officers receive. 

Second, no self-respecting military in the world would use the “assault weapons” that we sometimes see in mass shootings. AR-15s fire the same sorts of bullets as small game-hunting rifles, and even do so with the same velocity and rapidity (one bullet per pull of the trigger). In fact, AR-15s aren’t allowed for deer hunting in most states because of the fear that they will wound rather than kill the animals. This may cause the deer to die slowly and painfully.

Buttigieg may be correct that weapons of war are designed to “destroy as much as possible, as quickly as possible.” But that’s not the story of civilian gun use. Guns can also be used to protect people and keep them from harm. About 95% of the time that people use guns defensively, they simply brandish the gun and cause the criminals to break of their attack.

Buttigieg supports virtually every other gun control law that is being pushed, from licensing requirements to mandatory gun locks.

There are few differences among the remaining Democrat presidential candidates. Even the supposedly “moderate” Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) supports mandatory gun buybacks, though she insists that this is “not gun confiscation because you give them the offer to buy back their gun.” This is still taking guns away from people, whether or not you stuff some cash in their pockets when you do it. . . .

The rest of the piece is available here.

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  1. Richard Hinman

    The above article is full of false arguments and meaningless points.
    Mr. Lott says nothing to disprove Buttigieg’s statement that “weapons of war have no place in American neighborhoods”.
    Mayor Pete is right. AR-15s are very similar to M-16’s.
    The differences are trivial.
    55,000 psi vs. 58,000 psi and a full auto mode on some M-16s, (recently reintroduced by the US military after being discontinued for a number of years).
    The 3 shot “burst” mode is also insignificant, (according to the military).
    AR-15s have little practicality for civilian self-defense.
    Examples of AR- type rifles being NEEDED for self-defense are non-existent.
    Lott is correct saying “simply brandishing a gun” stops the attack. But what is also true is that when guns are fired in self-defense, 1 or 2 rounds are all that’s needed and finding examples of more than 6 or 8 rounds, (needed), is difficult.
    The 20 or 30 round magazines on “assault rifles” help the mass murdering shooters, not average citizens.

    • Peter G

      Here’s a rebuttal from a Guns and ammo article to offer evidence that you need more information on this subject…..
      A notable, and possibly the most heroic example of a good guy using an AR-­15 to save lives, is the case of Stephen Willeford. You might recall seeing the tragedy of the attack on a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, on November 5, 2017. What you may not have heard was that Willeford confronted and wounded the assailant. The active shooter was prohibited from possessing a firearm under federal law, but he opened fire on the parishioners of a small church, taking 26 lives and leaving 20 wounded. Alerted to the shooting in progress, Willeford grabbed an AR-­15 and ran out the door of his home barefoot, all while loading rounds into a magazine as he went. He engaged the shooter and forced him to turn his violence away from the church. Willeford then managed to flag down a passing vehicle, and together the two men risked their lives in pursuit of the murderer. Willeford hit the shooter twice and wounded him severely. Bleeding and likely dying, the shooter took his own life. Willeford, an NRA-­certified firearms instructor is regarded as a hero, though the mainstream media did not show him, nor his rifle, the respect that his actions warranted. “He had an AR-­15, but so did I,” Willeford said.

      At 2:25 a.m. on May 6, 2017, three men attempted a drive-­by shooting in a Houston neighborhood. The would-­be victim, who was in his own front yard when the attack occurred, returned fire with an AR-­15 and hit all three assailants. Two of them died — one on the scene and the other at the hospital — and a third survived his injuries while the victim was unscathed. The homeowner was not charged in the incident; It was considered self-­defense.

      “Why would anyone need a 30-­round magazine?” We’ve heard that familiar refrain repeated at nauseum. At least one Florida resident would disagree. On April 15, 2018, a Glen St. Mary resident awoke at 4 a.m. to a home invasion that was spurned by an apparent Facebook dispute. Seven masked and armed individuals forced their way into a mobile home where one of the residents was armed with an AR-­15. According to reports, the resident fired more than 30 rounds during the event, resulting in one home invader being killed and others wounded. Five individuals were arrested in the attack and the resident who defended his home faced no charges. Home invasions are often carried out with multiple intruders. Would you really want to face seven armed individuals in a critical situation with only a 10-­round magazine?

      In May of 2019, four men in a stolen car attempted a home invasion at a Tallahassee, Florida, residence. The homeowner was armed with a rifle and exchanged fire with the assailants, hitting two out of the four of them. Local news reports later revealed that the would-­be victim fired 25 rounds from his AR-­15 in self-­defense. A search of the assailants’ homes revealed property stolen during other burglaries, including firearms. The four men were charged.

      Why do we need AR-­15s and 30-round magazines? Constitutional rights aside, in these circumstances an AR-­15 and its magazine meant the difference between life and death for their owners.

      The world will always have bad people who do not follow laws. To achieve the advantage in a personal defense situation, AR-­15s are a necessary option for law-­abiding citizens due to their ergonomics, light weight, and compact profile. They are easy to shoot effectively while minimizing collateral risk. If you are faced with more than one violent offender, having to reload is not ideal. The survivors of these brutal crimes would agree. 

      • Richard Hinman

        I am familiar with all of those examples and none of them were instances where an AR-15 was NEEDED.
        In the Sutherland Springs case the mass shooter was walking out of the church when confronted by Willeford. The mass shooting was technically over and Willeford did not need 20 or 30 rounds.
        Also I exclude instances of gang activity or drug involvement, (on the part of the victim).
        In the other examples you list the victim fired unnecessarily at fleeing people.
        Emptying a 30 rd. magazine at fleeing criminals means 3 or 4 rounds were all that was needed.

  2. Tim

    “AR-15s have little practicality for civilian self-defense.”

    Ultimately the purpose of the 2nd Amendment is “civilian defense” against a potential government gone rouge not merely criminals per see. That’s what the 2nd amendment was for to protect the citizens’ right to act in their collective defense if all else fails as a check on the power of the state. That’s why you would need the right to keep and bear arms including rifles like AR-15’s.

    • Richard Hinman

      My beef is with high-capacity ammo magazines. (A key part of what makes something an “assault-type weapon”).
      Having said that: There are two parts to this debate.
      1) Self-defense in peacetime and
      2) Self defense in a civil war type conflict.
      Mayor Pete is referring to the first when he said “..(AR-15’s)…..have no place in American cities or neighborhoods in peacetime, ever”.
      Sounds like you agree with him.
      Regarding the second scenario:
      a) At least half the military and police would be conservatives. So it would not be a government versus the people scenario.
      b) In a civil war laws wouldn’t matter anyway, so a ban on high capacity magazines could be ignored and black market or 3-D printer magazines could easily be acquired.

      • Wesland

        I wish people would stop referring to 30 round magazine’s as being high capacity. A 30 round magazine is standard capacity. A high-capacity magazine would be one which has more capacity than the magazine normally used or considered “standard” for the weapon

  3. Phil Kline

    Police departments in America routinely provide cops with AR-15’s in their cars, along with several 30 round magazines. The purpose is to deal with armed American criminals on short notice.

    They have those rifles handy, not so the cops can repel parachuting foreign invaders, but to deal with multiple armed American criminals. The ones that you and I might encounter, on a farm or in our kitchen at 2 AM.

    We don’t have 2 different types of bad guys, one that only cops deal with, and the other that preys on the rest of us. It’s the same exact pool of criminals that cops encounter and we encounter.

    Either an AR-15 has utility against armed American criminals (as most police departments believe, and over 30 million Americans believe), or it doesn’t (as no evidence at all suggests).

    Pick one version of reality that is consistent with the millions of dollars spent arming civilian cops, and the tens of millions that knowledgeable Americans spent on arming themselves last year.

    • Richard Hinman

      Police started arming themselves with AR-15s because the criminals started using them. In the 1990’s LA bank shootout, the police were outgunned. That, in part, prompted police to carry ARs.
      “We don’t have two different types of bad guys, one that only cops deal with, and the other that preys on the rest of us…”.
      That is completely wrong!. When criminals encounter the police, the bad guy has two choices: Go to prison or fight back. If the criminal flees, the police will follow them until he’s caught.
      When criminals encounter an armed citizen, they can disengage and flee, knowing the citizen won’t pursue them.
      A criminal dealing with the police is in a much more desperate situation than with ordinary citizens.

  4. Robert E. Naess

    A marginally competent shooter with five ten, round magazines used
    In any type of auto loader, rifle or pistol, can be just as destructive as one using a larger capacity magazines simply because he has two distinct and critical advantages of any hunter: surprise and time.
    “Mass shooters” are hunters in every respect and until this is clearly understood, there will be few solutions to prevent these rare events.
    A hunter ambushes his quarry. He is often difficult to find quickly . He has the advantage of captive quarry. He has the time to select his targets. He has the time to reload until he is out of ammo, has a firearm malfunction or until he is distracted or violently opposed.
    It doesn’t matter in the least what hardware he is using in virtually every one of these types of events. The obsession with high cap magazines is a foolish “red herring” and illuminates how poorly the politicians understand what are valid solutions and to seek and try them such bans will achieve absolutely nothing with preventing such events. Every instance of criminalizing the use of a substance or item has created potential felons out of non-criminal people and a violent black market. Substitute the word “gun” in every argument to ban something, drugs, prostitution, alcohol, books,, etc, etc and the flow to customers increases at higher cost and with violent protection of the illicit market and money. Stupidity is learned just as easily as wisdom and the current approach to dealing with criminal use of firearms is rife with stupidity and false ideology. One question to the anti-gun proponents is: what level of deaths from illegal use of firearms is statistically acceptable as realistic compared to an irrational ideal? Presently the level of such deaths is extremely low given the number of owners and firearms in the country.

  5. JDMaine

    “About 95% of the time that people use guns defensively, they simply brandish the gun and cause the criminals to break of their attack.” That is complete bullshit. You can’t substantiate that in any way