February 19th, 2013
05:44 PM ET
10 years ago

Biden gives parenting advice, reloads shotgun line

(CNN) - Vice President Joe Biden explained the importance of gun safety to parents Tuesday with this analogy:

"You keep the cookies on the second shelf so they can't reach and then grab them all the time. People should not be in a position where their children have access to weapons and ammunition," he said.

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He advocated for the gun violence reduction proposals President Barack Obama has advanced in an online chat on Tuesday sponsored by Parents Magazine. Biden answered questions submitted to the magazine by parents - including one question on how gun control could reduce individuals' ability to defend themselves.

Repeating advice he's offered previously, Biden again advocated for the shotgun in home defense.

"If you want to protect yourself, get a double-barreled shotgun," he said. "Have the shells of a 12-gauge shotgun and I promise you - as I told my wife … 'Jill, if there is ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony here, walk out, put that double barreled shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house. I promise you whoever is coming in is not going to.' "

The shotgun, he said, is more effective than an assault-style weapon such as the AR-15, which he said "is harder to aim, it is harder to use. … Buy a shotgun."

Biden has become the Obama administration's public face on gun control, first leading a group Obama tasked with meeting various stakeholders on the gun control issue and then promoting the platform in a series of ongoing public appearances. He will attend a gun violence conference on Thursday near Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 students and six adults were killed by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December.

In the online chat, Biden said he does not favor constitutional amendments to refine or adjust the Second Amendment, which as the constitutional source of gun rights is cited by both proponents and opponents to make their cases.

"The constitution does allow the government to conclude that there are certain types of weapons that no one can legally own," Biden said in the online chat. "Now if that were not the case then you should be able to legally go buy a flamethrower that the military has; you should be able to go - if you're a billionaire - buy an F-15 loaded with ordnance; you should be able to buy an M-1 tank; you should be able to buy a machine gun; you should be able to buy a grenade launcher."

The limits are imposed for "public safety," he said, and the Second Amendment allows space to "eliminate assault weapons and limit the number of shells or bullets in a magazine."

An assault weapons ban proposed by Obama and several members of Congress, however, is not expected to pass. The president's proposal also includes making background checks before gun sales universal, increasing police resources, and improving the mental health care and reporting system.

Filed under: Gun control • Joe Biden
soundoff (184 Responses)
  1. Richard in Houston

    The vice prrsident is correct. In close quatts like a house a shotgun is a better weapon.why do you think solders prefered them in the jungle. Close quarts wider kill field.

    February 20, 2013 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  2. danshaw4

    I don't sem to remember asking for Joe's advice..nor do I seem to remember giving him permission to determine how i should exercise my civil rights.

    February 20, 2013 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Wilson wrote:

    So, if I'm responding to you directly you want me to call you Dennis?
    By the way, you are correct, neither law has been repealed so "assault" weapons are still banned, and have been since 1968
    Google this, " Mr. Wilson and Dennis " Those laws prohibited "fully automatic" weapons and weapons modified to be deadlier than their original manufacture: i.e., sawed-off shotguns. Your argument is totally ridiculous because the types of weapons that we're talking about today were not around in those days; i.e. the AK-47 wasn't even invented until 1947.

    February 20, 2013 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  4. Wilson

    @Uri Nation

    When the National Guard comes to your front door to see what kind of weapons you own, they will show up with something more than double barrel shotguns.
    How many National Guardsmen do you think will regard the order to go door-to-door, under normal societal conditions (no riot), and confiscate weapons, a lawful order?

    February 20, 2013 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  5. Carl

    All americans should stand for their second amendment rights! Give a handgun to your child to protect himself in school! Setup lethal traps around your house to protect your family! Bring a rifle to the DMV when you get your license renewed in case the government tries to kill you! Guns! Freedom! America!


    February 20, 2013 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  6. rbnlegen101

    Drew, each pellet in double ought buckshot is comparable to a .38 and you are going to be firing a dozen of them at a very small section of wall. Even that sturdy plaster wall won't stop the shot. I've torn down that kind of wall with a crowbar, it's tough stuff, but if any of those guns will penetrate it, it's the shotgun, not the handgun, or the small caliber rifle.

    I am 43 years old and qualified with shotgun and revolver for law enforcement. Second highest score in our group of 20 with handgun, and six of us maxed the test for shotgun. We also had a smaller female in our testing group who was unable to keep her footing firing the shotgun, it stepped her back and nearly knocked her over every time. I'm sure that eventually she could have learned to manage it, but if you claim you were firing a 12ga one handed as a scrawny teenager, someone tricked you into thinking a .410 was a 12. We also had a tough guy who thought he was the next coming of rambo who was constantly complaining about how the shotguns had bruised his shoulder. He cried like a baby during the pepper spray exposure drill too. At least the girl who couldn't handle the shotgun maintained her composure with a face full of orange foam.

    February 20, 2013 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  7. Kentuckian

    A Sheriff in Kentucky, Ray Burnum, will deputizes every citizen in his county, allowing them to own AR15's if the government tries to take them from citizens.

    February 20, 2013 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  8. givemeabreak

    Malory Archer- plenty of folks have posted EXACTLY VERBATIM what Joe said. What he said to do is ILLEGAL and violates the most important gun safety rules. If you'd ever been taught gun safety you'd already know this. So please keep supporting Joe and feeding his ignorance with your own ignorance. Because when the general pubic sees all that ignorance it actually helps the cause of "tighty righties" like me. And I'd much rather be a tighty righty than to be ignorant in gun safety as you obviously are.

    February 20, 2013 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  9. The Dude

    Wow... the IQ level of some on here (yes, I'm talking about you 'ohplease') is astounding. An AR-15 is a "weapon of war"!? Dear God I hope not. If that is the gun that we're sending our boys to Afghanistan to fight with they are in serious trouble! A .223 isn't even big enough for a deer or hog. Fact is... you can do more damage with a 5 shot pump shotgun. But all of these liberals won't tell you that. the only statistic that matters: Chicago is a gun-free zone. It has the highest murder rate in the US. And they aren't using AR-15's. They're using handguns.

    February 20, 2013 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
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