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>Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 17:10:11 -0500
>From: Chuck Kuecker <email@example.com>
>Subject: Re: GUNS: Why here?
>At 02:15 PM 10/10/00 -0700, you wrote:
>> >You can buy many books of various kinds with various content at gun
>> shows. This
>> >shows that gun owners care more about freedom of speech than alleged
>> >According to the Supreme Court, if speech that offends is not protected,
>> >there is no freedom of speech. By the same logic, if guns that offend
>> people are
>> >not protected, is this not a violation of the right to keep and bear?
>>Next you'll be preaching the virtues of the right to keep and bear nukes,
>>ricin, zyklon-b and anthrax bacilli. These things are not allowed to be
>>privately owned (with few exceptions for some of them) for the same reason
>>that free speech does not include the right to yell "Fire!" in a crowded
>>theater; the danger such possession poses to the public at large, even
>>from their panic should they find out it is being held in their
>>midst. Fully automatic weapons, since 1934, fall into the same category
>>(and I know you jumped through all kinds of paperwork hoops so that you
>>could keep and bear a full auto of your very own). As to semiautomatic
>>assault weapons, I'll quote you a few facts and figures on them from your
>There is no defensive use of anthrax that I know of. It's easier to get
>dynamite today then to buy a gun.
I sincerely doubt that; I could go but one now.
> Nukes are for the super-rich - the upkeep
>is horrible, and you need lead lined shorts if you pack one on your hip.
>The 1934 National Firearms Act was a TAX LAW, meant to use as a club over
>the heads of organized crime. Compliance with this law was around 1% in the
>years after it's passing. In 1968, the govt. allowed an amnesty where
>individuals could register NFA weapons without paying the tax. Many of
>today's machine guns and artillery pieces in civilian hands came into the
>system in '68.
>For years before this was passed, individuals could purchase Thompson
>machine guns in the local hardware store at a reasonable price. Aside from
>a few (very few!) highly publicized gang shootings, there was no return to
>the Wild West caused by thousands of fully automatic guns being sold to
>anyone, including children, who could pay for them.
There are not many in circulation now, and those that are require special licenses. Their owners are not likely to abuse them, because they are carefully vetted before permits are issued.
>The NFA also made
>silencers a taxed item - this has probably caused more hearing injuries to
>shooters and bystanders by a few orders of magnitude than it ever prevented
>criminal acts. In Europe, some shooting ranges REQUIRE silencers on rifles
>- just like on automobiles. It's a common sense safety precaution when you
>actually stop and think about it.
Some folks' ear safety is other folks' killing stealth. I have no problem with quieters, as long as the firing is still clearly audible.
>The term "assault weapon" was coined by the HCI types. It has no legal
>definition, and no military rifle is ever called an "assault weapon" by the
>military. Any weapon - gun, knife, or club - can be an "assault weapon" if
>it is used in an attack.
It has an official definition in California state law. See:
at the end of the issue brief.
>When you get right down to the nitty-gritty, an "assault weapon" is purpose
>designed to WOUND, not kill, in battle, as wounded enemy take up much more
>of the enemy's resources than dead. These easily carried guns are also
>ideal for home defense, and, seeing as the militia is the people, armed
>with state of the art MILITARY small arms, it is quite proper to expect
>people to buy them and keep them.
Actually, handguns and shotguns are better for close range home protection. Rifles are intended for medium to long-range fire, or for rapid firefight spray if they are semiauto or auto.
>We keep forgetting here that the fundamental law, the Second Amendment,
>refers to a people's militia, not the National Guard. And to be effective,
>the militia needs the same quality guns that the current army has. Under
>the Constitution, therefore, it might be OK to ban shotguns and rifles used
>only for hunting, but not sawed-off "trench sweepers" or machine guns used
>in battle. Hunting is not protected by the Second Amendment. These kinds of
>guns definitely are, regardless of passed laws and the opinions of HCI.
The 2nd amendment was meant to keep 'well-regulated militias' armed, to protect the states charged with regulating them against the encroachment of federal power, a protection that was proven useless by the Civil war. Today's national guards (the heirs to state-regulated militias) store their weapons in armories. The NRA has never challenged a gun law on 2nd amendment grounds, as they know that it wouldn't fly; the appeal to it is a device to inflame emotions.
>>In 1994, a leading law enforcement executive characterized semi-automatic
>>assault weapons as nothing more than "cop-killer guns," and at that time
>>assault weapons accounted for more than 17% of fatal shootings of police.)
>"Cop-killer" has been used a number of times. It is meaningless. There were
>bans of "cop killer" bullets - ammo that was ONLY sold to police
>departments. These terms are coined to further demonize the product that it
>is proposed be banned. More emotion grabbing meaningless words.
Wnen a weapon class is responsible for seventeen times as many cop killings per gun as other classes, the term references real meaning.
>>Assault weapon bans work. In 1989, when President Bush stopped the import
>>of certain assault rifles, the number of imported assault rifles traced to
>>crime dropped by 45 percent in one year. After the 1994 ban, there were
>>18% fewer assault weapons traced to crime in the first eight months of
>>1995 than were traced in the same period in 1994, and the wholesale price
>>of "grandfathered" assault rifles nearly tripled in the first post-ban
>>year. Assault weapons are not just "ugly guns." Semi-automatic hunting
>>rifles are designed to be fired from the shoulder and depend on the
>>accurate shooting of one bullet at a time. Semi-automatic assault weapons
>>are designed to be spray-fired from the hip and are designed to maximize
>>death and injury from a very rapid rate of fire. Assault weapons are
>>designed with military features such as silencers, folding stocks, flash
>>suppressors, barrel shrouds and bayonets which are ludicrously unsuited
>>for civilian use.
>No military weapon except some sniper rifles comes with a silencer, nor are
>they issued with guns. The other "hallmarks" of "assault weapons" are all
>the "scary" looking parts. There is no difference in lethality between a
>"sporting" gun and a military gun - the military gun just looks "meaner"
>and more businesslike, while the "sporter" can be beautifully finished and
>engraved. Both will kill you dead.
Semiautos can kill a lot more people dead a lot quicker. No real hunter sprays game.
>Folding stocks can be fired from the shoulder - that's why they are there.
>Fixed stocks without pistol grips can be fired from the waist, with a loss
>of accuracy. For covering fire, this is acceptable. Of course a hunter is
>interested in accurate shooting - he does not want to waste ammo and scare
>dinner away. The soldier in battle also wants to be frugal with ammo, if
>possible. An inaccurate gun would kill the soldier using it by preventing
>him from efficiently attacking the enemy. So to state that "assault
>weapons" cannot be used for hunting is silly, and wrong. Somebody tell me
>when the last time a civilian in the USA was injured by a BAYONET for
>christsake! (Although a bayonet makes a dandy shiskebob skewer...)
They possess capacities that are unnecessary for hunting purposes, particularly the rapid-fire capacity.
>I have a "sporter" AK-47 that hits 3" groups without a scope at 100 yards,
>if fired from a bench. My original Romanian Army SKS is even more accurate.
>I find it wonderful how HCI can continue to ought right lie and group
>machine pistols like the Uzi with true rifles like the AK and SKS.
Tec-9's, Uzis and Mac-11's are definitely less suited for hunting purposes than AR-15's, AK's and SKS's, but accurate hunting rifles do not need a rapid fire capacity if the hunter is good enough to be out there. If he isn't, rapid-fire spray is a danger to other hunters.
>Stupid laws like the "assault weapon" ban are just incremental gun
>prohibition - especially if the definition of "assault weapon" continues to
>mutate, like in California.
Actually, what mutated were the guns. The manufacturers produced cosmetically altered copycat versions specifically designed to circumvent the ban while retaining the desired rapid-fire characteristics, and the law was amended to cover them.
>It's not much of a stretch to include all
>weapons with barrels shorter than 16" as "assault weapons" - then ALL
>handguns are gone, and with them the possibility that women, invalids, and
>handicapped persons just might be able to defend themselves against predation.
I do not subscribe to the slippery slope domino theory, and would not support such action. I do believe that we should all be willing to take responsible measures to keep military-style semiautomatic rifles from flooding the civilian market, while preserving the right of sane and law-abiding adults to purchase shotguns, long guns designed for hunting, and handguns designed for home protection.
>>Burglary is a crime, but that doesn't mean that everyone should leave
>>their doors unlocked because everyone is proactively presumed
>>innocent. People both knowingly and unknowingly commit crimes. Closing
>>the gun show background check loophole would make it harder for them to do
>>so, and thus harder for kids, psychos and violent criminals to obtain the
>>quick and easy means to commit long-range mass murder, while not
>>interfering in the slightest with the rights of sane and law-abiding
>>adults to purchase, keep and bear.
>>You can never make it impossible for kids, psychos and violent criminals
>>to illegally obtain firearms, but that is no reason not to make it harder
>>for them to do so, if it does not interfere with the ability of sane and
>>law-abiding adulyts to purchase, keep and bear.
>As long as any background check does not prevent a cleared individual from
>taking his purchase home with them at the time of the sale, I agree. But
>there must be NO listing of the gun itself - registration of the gun is a
>precursor to confiscation, as California has amply demonstrated. Waiting
>periods kill innocents who need protection NOW, and don't deter those with
>grudges - they can wait a day or three if they are really intent on mayhem.
I also do not advocate gun registration, but rather people registration; the maintainence of a purchase-prohibited list that must be referenced by background check prior to a sale. I CAN see the point in a short waiting period, until all the records that need to be accessed are made instantly accessible. There are also such things as 'crimes of passion' and 'jealous rages'; but I cannot see preventing a sane and law-abiding adult from immediately buying a means of personal protection, although I would also hope that they would call the police.
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