February 19th, 2013
05:44 PM ET
9 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. Bryce

    The sad thing about all this gun rhetoric is that "This is going to happen folks" It is going to happen. They will ban guns that are black in color and look scary. They will ban high capicity magazines and there will be authority figures in uniform who will take away our black rifles while we are out rabbit hunting. Even though thier reasoning and logic is so out of touch with reality. Because they are shrill and can scream very loud.....it's going to happen. Thank you for being so wise and all knowing that you can decide for me what guns you will allow and when and how I am aloud to protect myself and my family. I am so grateful that you went to college and got that doctorate degree in english literature because it has helped you become so aware and all knowing.

    February 20, 2013 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  2. TiSentinel65

    I will not be taking any advice from our VP. A tactical shotgun would be much better, one that holds nine or ten rounds. In a gun fight, reloading puts you at a disadvantage, and guess who wants to limit how many shells you can have in your gun? You guessed it, ..... Biden and Obama. Must be nice having the secret service protecting you and your family at all times. That in itself, an armed group of highly proficient professionals who are willing to take a bullet meant for you is a luxury I can't afford. I'll stick with the tactical any day.

    February 20, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  3. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    Some parents want to know how gun control would reduce individual's ability to self defense??? First of all, gun control won't reduce individual ability to self defense. It would instead increase your ability to self destruct. Secondly, if gun advocates are really conserned about self defense and less concerned about gun possession obsession, install a home security system or buy a hong dog. These measures are safer and more reliable.

    February 20, 2013 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  4. Harry

    If hand guns, according to the government, cause 72% of all gun violence, WHY is the Federal Government so bent on magazine limits and taking away the right of citizens to own semi-automatic weapons?

    The Federal Governement ISN'T afraid of handguns. Think about it.

    February 20, 2013 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  5. Plumber

    I would really like to know where in the constitution that it says the government (people that we chose to control us (sic)) can tell us what types of weapons, magazines and ammunition we can use. I am a responsible adult and ave no desire to go on a rampage with my AR. But it is a fun gun to shoot.

    February 20, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  6. RC

    But Uncle Joe how many shells should my shotgun hold? What type of shells should I use? What color gun can I have?
    If you are going to give gun advise and expect me to be a drone and follow it you have to give me "ALL" the advise so that I can't make a mistake and get 6 shot instead of slug.


    February 20, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  7. Randy, San Francisco

    Thanks Vice-president Biden, but I'll rather rely on my security alarm system, retreat to a designated safe hiding place, and call 911.

    February 20, 2013 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  8. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer


    While guns may account for 72% of the gun violence in America, some of these tragedies involved randon shootings or shootings where victims were too young to defend themselves with a gun while most of the gun violence in question involved individuals who already had guns in their possession. Most of the victims in the 72% were victims who were members of a gang or had been involed in illegal activity. Your point is simply pointless.

    February 20, 2013 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  9. Coach2k

    The scariest part about his whole statement is that he is encouraging people to blindly fire off rounds at unknown noises and in unknown directions. He needs to realize that if you are willing to pull the trigger on any firearm, you are responsible for EVERY ROUND that leaves that barrel. This is the guy leading the charge on "gun control"?

    February 20, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. EagleEddie

    And come election time the democrats will lose the house. Deja vu?

    February 20, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  11. KirkUSA

    Why would you shoot in the air if someone is trying to break into your house? The best form of gun control is a steady aim. My double barrel shotgun is used to hunt birds. I keep a street sweeper shotgun for home defense. 25 rounds beats 2 rounds any day.

    February 20, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  12. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    @ Plummer

    The constitution does give legislators the legal authority to make laws and tell you what you can and cannot do. Likewise the constitution gives police officers the authority to tell you what you can and cannot possess or where you can and can't possess for example marijuana or weapons, whether its at an airport or public place.

    February 20, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  13. EG

    Isn't it scary to have a second in command like Biden?
    Mr. Vice President, discharging a firearm in the air to scare away intruders not only is dangerous to people and animals around yourself (think neighbors, their children and their pets), it's also ILLEGAL. Obviously you have no idea of what you are talking about.

    February 20, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. Malory Archer

    I LOOOOOOOOVVVVEEEE the way Joe gets under the tighty rightie's skin every time he states facts! Keep up the great work Joe!

    February 20, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  15. givemeabreak

    So when the cops come to arrest me for shooting off the porch, I can tell 'em Joe said it's ok. Most moronic thing a VP ever said. So stupid I'll bet even the liberals cringe.

    February 20, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  16. duane - st.pete FL

    just a heartbeat away this guy is...scary.

    February 20, 2013 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  17. TomTom

    What goes up, must come down. What idiotic advice it is to fire a shotgun in the air. This might have been useful when house were miles apart, but not in most of today's neighborhoods. Speaking of which, it's obvious Biden has a difficult time relating to the typical American family, few of whom live in a house that has a balcony.

    I agree the tactical shotgun is the way to go.

    February 20, 2013 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  18. Bob

    duane – st.pete FL

    just a heartbeat away this guy is...scary.

    Sez the guy who voted for Palin

    February 20, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  19. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    @ Eagle

    Sure, and come election time, you'd still vote for the right wing trolls even if they fillibuster funds to save your employer's company from going under. That figures.

    February 20, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  20. jB

    ♫♪ Guns! ...what are they good for???
    Absolutely nothing! ☼ say it again! ♪♫

    February 20, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  21. Sniffit

    LOL...keep driving them nuts Joey...love it.


    February 20, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  22. Name

    I wonder how many double barrel shotguns the secret service carries crazy joe?another idiot remark telling people to use shotguns cause they cause more damage really,lets talk fast and furious guess we shipped farmer shotguns to mexico?stop criminals im reloading!joe stick with the comedy routine I enjoy it.lol

    February 20, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  23. Silly Joe

    As always Biden proves himself to be clueless.

    1) Firearms experts will tell you that carbines ( which includes variants of the AR-15 ) are the best home defense weapon.
    2) The US military doesn't have any flamethrowers, it stopped using them in the 1970s.
    3) There is no federal law banning civilian ownership of flamethrowers.

    February 20, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  24. Sniffit

    "Most moronic thing a VP ever said. "

    Aside from you purposefully misinterpreting what Joe said, I do believe Cheney already holds that honor: "Deficits don't matter."

    February 20, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. USVET

    Isn't Biden aware that some of the very guns that Senator Feinstein wants to ban, restrict, or destroy are actually shotguns. He mentions having a shotgun locked up in his home for self-protection of his wife. However, a locked gun is a useless gun in a home invasion scenerio. However, he fails to mention that he has Secret Service protection, so he doesn't really need a gun anymore does he?

    February 20, 2013 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
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