Representative Peter Roskam (R-IL 6th)
6th-term Republican from Illinois.
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Rep. Peter Roskam
Sen. Richard Durbin

February 9, 2013

  I am firmly in support of improving firearm safety and continuing the downward trend of violent crime in America, continuing through a 50% decline since 1994, with meaningfully implemented legislation. Despite these victories over violent crime, there is room for improvement as some of our current legislation falls short or is not properly enforced. I support HR 137 (Fix Gun Checks Act of 2013), HR 141 (Gun Show Loophole Closing Act of 2013), and HR 329 (To amend the NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007) and similar legislation because I see the power and potential these measures have for curbing illegal and unethical sales of firearms, and for limiting crimes of passion.

However, I whole heartedly oppose S33 and HR 138 (To prohibit the transfer or possession of large capacity ammunition feeding devices) and the Assault Weapons Ban of 2013 because the evidence shows that neither are warranted in terms of public safety or would be meaningfully effective at promoting the public safety.

The Assault Weapons Ban of 2013 provides a blanket restriction across many firearms possessing certain features with disregard to FBI data showing that many of the firearms described therein, specifically all types of long guns, are very rarely used in crime and only constitute approximately 0.2% of all violent crime. Even if these measures were perfectly effective, they would still have a vanishingly small effect on violent crime at the expense of millions of law abiding citizens.
Along the same vein, the proposed restriction on high capacity magazines has very little potential to curb violent crime and is only a knee jerk response to the acts of madmen. It makes little sense to qualify that ten-round restriction as “adequate for self defense” without realizing it is then equally adequate for committing the crimes that require self defense. Higher capacities are rarely required or used in crime and restricting capacity only tramples upon law abiding citizens for perceived threats that don't exist. Both proposals stand in opposition to the text and intent of the Second Amendment, and both proposals have little capability to meaningfully reduce violent crime in America.

Violent crime is not a “gun problem” any more than drunk driving is a “car problem,” or obesity is a “fast food problem.” Violent crime is a cultural problem, and dangerous psychotics are a public health problem. THEY MUST BE TREATED AS SUCH. It is irresponsible and negligent to do otherwise when lives hang in the balance. Thank you for regarding my concerns and I hope you will strive to always make meaningful and informed decisions regarding these matters. I hope you will always uphold the tenants of our Constitution and those of reason and righteousness.

Carol Stream , IL