It’s Never the Person, Is It?

When will people realize that things are not to blame for people taking matters into their own hands and committing crimes against other persons?

Bob Owens goes technical on the Fort Hood murders:

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Violence Policy Center, Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Freedom States Alliance, Legal Community Against Violence, States United to Prevent Gun Violence, and more than two dozen other anti-gun organizations have decided to use the murder of American servicemen to advance their own perpetual cause: the undermining of the Second Amendment.

They used the occasion to draft a letter to our anti-gun president, seeking an immediate ban on the importation of the pistol Hasan used to carry out his jihad: an FN Herstal Five-seveN. They claimed — as they have for several years — that the pistol is a threat to pierce police body armor, and that armor-piercing ammunition for this firearm is readily available. They also used the occasion to refer to the pistol by the name given to it by Mexican drug cartels: “mata policia,” or “cop-killer.”

For any of you who might be unfamiliar with this particular pistol and its ammunition, they were developed to be a high-velocity replacement for 9mm pistols and bullpup rifles. In caliber and power, the 5.7 FN is very like a .22 Hornet (used for many a rockchuck and woodchuck over the years, before the increasing power and availability of the .204 and .223 rounds).

See, for the folks mentioned above, it doesn’t matter what the facts are as long as they can ride a wave of emotion toward the beach of gun-withoutness.

The SS190 “armor-piercing” round banned in 1999 (years before the Five-seveN reached the civilian market) is now so rare that the cartridges are far too expensive to shoot. Also, they are only bought by collectors. To give you a sense of perspective, a 50-round box of premium Cor-Bon match-grade 9mm sells for $24.99. Aluminum-cased practice ammo for the 9mm runs almost half that price, at $13.29 a box.

A single, 50-round box of armor-piercing SS190 ammunition sold at auction on October 12 for $801, or $16 per cartridge.

To top off the absurd fear-mongering of the anti-gun groups, the armor-piercing claim was never meant to apply to the SS190 cartridge fired from the short 4.5″ barrel of the Five-SeveN pistol. To achieve armor-piercing velocity, the bullet has to be fired from the longer-barreled P90 submachine gun for which the cartridge was originally designed.

I’ve fired a number of 5.7 FN rounds and can confirm the information provided here. I would also mention that the use of the term “armor-piercing” is about as useful as “high-powered rifle.” Both these terms are used with abandon by journalists who literally wouldn’t know a .22 rimfire from a .270 deer rifle if they were holding one in each hand.

This has been said elsewhere, but bears repeating. Nearly any round can be “armor piercing” with the correct bullet and velocity. Body armor comes in levels or grades. The more one spends (generally speaking) the better protection one gets. However, most police body armor worn on duty by officers here in the US is intended to provide protection from standard pistol rounds ranging from the aforementioned .22 rimfire up to the .40 S&W and the .45 ACP class of cartridges. Nearly any centerfire rifle cartridge used for deer hunting would defeat such body armor.

But again, when it comes to Brady, et al, it is not about the facts, it is about the emotions. Despite that, it does not matter whether it was Colonel Mustard in the library with a candlestick or Major Hasan in the processing center with an FN 5.7–the weapon was merely a means by which the deed could be expedited.

As sad as the truth may be, only people commit crimes. As Jeremiah BenHilkiah reminds us:

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?