I am definitely not the first to mention this – however it’s worth examining the coverage that the ban has received. According to the NSSF, the EPA wants to ban all traditional lead core ammunition under the Toxic Substances Act. Honestly, my first reaction to seeing this was “that has got to be a hoax, there is no way the EPA is that stupid”. Sadly I was wrong.
Reaction has been predictable; it’s been pointed out that the EPA lacks the authority to do this, even though that probably won’t stop them. Other have expressed the point that banning lead ammo is actually a really good way to get a bunch of people who are not invested in this fight to become suddenly and aggressively invested. Lots and lots of people have commented on how this is the administrations way of taking a run at gun owners – which coincidentally is similar to line in a Chris Rock comedy bit where he proposed keeping guns legal but making each bullet cost $500 (or something along those lines, it’s been a while). The point obviously is that a ban on traditional lead core ammo would devastate the shooting community. Non-lead ammo such as mild steel is already illegal as it’s classified as armor piercing, and sintered copper/tin projectiles are prohibitively expensive for most shooters.
So what can we do about it? Obviously, since the EPA restriction is open for public comment, click this link to submit a comment. NSSF has recommended some talking points for said comment:
* There is no scientific evidence that the use of traditional ammunition is having an adverse impact on wildlife populations.
* Wildlife management is the proper jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the 50 state wildlife agencies.
* A 2008 study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on blood lead levels of North Dakota hunters confirmed that consuming game harvested with traditional ammunition does not pose a human health risk.
* A ban on traditional ammunition would have a negative impact on wildlife conservation. The federal excise tax that manufacturers pay on the sale of the ammunition (11 percent) is a primary source of wildlife conservation funding. The bald eagle’s recovery, considered to be a great conservation success story, was made possible and funded by hunters using traditional ammunition – the very ammunition organizations like the CBD are now demonizing.
* Recent statistics from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service show that from 1981 to 2006 the number of breeding pairs of bald eagles in the United States increased 724 percent. And much like the bald eagle, raptor populations throughout the United States are soaring.
Additionally, contact your Senators and Congressman. While this isn’t yet a legislative issue, blowing up the phone lines on Cap Hill never hurt our team, and now would be a good time to do it. Finally, contact the person at EPA responsible for all of this, Lisa Jackson. Her email address is [email protected] and I’d encourage you to use the talking points listed above in your communication.
One final point – when contacting you Senators and Congressman, find out if they’re up for re-election. If they are, very politely remind them that this EPA has to make a decision on this the day before election day, and your Senator/Congressman’s strong and vocal opposition to a lead ammo ban will go a long way towards guaranteeing a vote from a happy(ish) constituent.