Q: What kind of “criminal justice researcher” doesn’t bother to learn the laws she’s “researching”?

A: The kind with zero credibility.

I ran across this column from last April. It illustrates an all too common problem.

Want to understand gun owners? Watch their videos
I’m a criminal justice researcher. At the time, a flurry of thoughts popped into my mind. Aren’t citizens forbidden to own automatic weapons? Is it legal to make a video of a semi-automatic rifle performing like an automatic firearm? What about the 1930’s machine gun ban – is there a YouTube loophole of some sort?

Connie Hassett-Walker is criminal justice researcher, writing about firearms, who thinks there was a ban on machineguns in the 1930s.

Like so many others, she’s probably talking the National Firearms Act of 1934. Unlike some who woefully misinterpret that, Hassett-Walker — an alleged criminal justice professional — has no excuse for not knowing that the NFA imposed taxes and registration on machineguns. It was not a ban.

But hey, she’s from New Jersey, with lots of unconstitutional firearms laws; maybe, despite that she appears to be addressing the nation, she’s talking about a New Jersey ban.

Nope. They license them (and it appears licenses are extremely difficult for us hoi polloi to obtain), but they don’t ban them.

There is a ban on new machineguns (for the hoi polloi). The misnamed Firearms Owners Protection Act of 1986 forbade the import or manufacture of machineguns for civilians after May 1986. But machineguns registered before that date were, and remain, perfectly legal. According to my calendar, 1986 did not fall within the 1930s.

She supposedly spent seven years looking into firearms, laws, and machineguns specifically, but still makes the bullshit claim that machine were banned 84 years ago.

Hassett-Walker’s column continues with a claim that watching YouTube videos “moderated” her views on firearms issues. Frankly, after a major league misstatement of the law on machineguns, I couldn’t even make myself keep reading further than that. She has no credibility.


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