- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 23, 2001

A liberal holdover from the Clinton administration Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Ann Brown has set her sights on recalling possibly 100 million air rifles (also known as BB guns) on the addle-pated premise that these American icons are "defective" because they operate without the multiple "safety" features that gun (and air rifle) grabbers are trotting out as their latest excuse to justify their confiscatory agenda. This, of course, is the same gambit that was attempted against firearms manufacturers with near-devastating results.
Mrs. Brown, who has less than two weeks to serve in her post, is aggressively employing the same tactic. Though CPSC is barred by law from regulating firearms, that category excludes air rifles and BB guns because they are powered by compressed air, not the explosive force of a cartridge. Nonetheless, when a liberal can't grab a gun, he (or she) tends to grab the next best thing.
The gist of her argument such as it is is that most air rifles lack the elaborate Rube Golberg-esque "safety" features, such as multiple locks (which would make the guns all but unaffordable), as well as the feeble notion that, because the BB pellet is silver in color, like the inside of the barrel, users might not be aware the thing is loaded. Protection from that kind of imbecility is assuredly beyond the powers of even the CPSC and regulators such as Mrs. Brown. In fact, it was just such an incident that prompted the recall effort. A Pennsylvania teen who apparently believed his Daisy air rifle was empty "accidentally" pointed it at his friend and pulled the trigger. The friend was permanetly disabled by the reckless carelessness of the other boy but of course, in Mrs. Brown's world, the evil air rifle is to blame. That no one would have been harmed had the boys handled the air rifle responsibly does not enter into the thought processes of such a person.
While this liberal Democrat ax-grinder claims her concerns affect "only" some 9 million air rifles and BB guns, the looseness of the defect claim has the potential to affect practically all rifles.
The three-member CPSC board is scheduled to meet today to consider the recall, and a vote is scheduled for Oct. 30 one day before the lame duck Mrs. Brown leaves office. It is unclear whether the other two commissioners one Democrat and one Republican support the recall idea. Previous attempts fell apart and a CPSC investigation in 1996 found that the Daisy air rifle at issue (model 880) was not defective.
Mrs. Brown's soon-to-be ex-colleagues should toss this latest uncalled-for recall attempt by a transparent liberal agitator directly into the trash, along with any CPSC letterhead embossed with the name of the thankfully almost-gone chairman.



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