The Ten Untold Facts On "ASSAULT WEAPONS"
1) Legislation is not possible without consistent definitions. Because the only difference between semi-automatic "assault weapons," and semi-automatic hunting firearms are in their aesthetics, a consistent definition of semi-automatic "assault weapons" that protects semi-automatic hunting firearms is not possible.
-- legislation that lists specific individual guns by name fails to include all guns of similar design;
-- legislation that provides a generic definition of common features mistakenly includes guns that by no stretch of the imagination are "assault weapons."
2) It is irrational and intellectually dishonest to outlaw guns based solely on their appearances (aesthetics). The only differences between semi-automatic "assault weapons," and semi-automatic hunting firearms are in their appearances.
3) Semi-automatic means they fire one shot at a time. Automatic means they fire more than one shot at a time. Semi-automatic firearms cannot “spray” bullets. Semi-automatic "assault weapons" are military "replicas." They are identical to many millions of semi-automatic hunting rifles and shotguns currently in circulation, and not identical to firearms used by the military, which have the capability of firing in fully-automatic mode.
4) The calibers common to these military replicas were designed by the military to injure, not kill, a fully-grown 200 lb. human being. The calibers common to semi-automatic hunting rifles and shotguns were designed to kill, not injure, big game species, including 300 lb. deer, 900 lb. North American Elk, and 1200 lb. Alaskan Moose.
5) The "rate of fire" between these military replicas and semi-automatic hunting rifles are essentially identical. However, just in example, any twelve-gauge shotgun loaded with "00 buckshot" can fire twelve .33 caliber projectiles instantly with every pull of the trigger. Therefore, based just on "rate of fire," any common hunting shotgun is more dangerous than a semi-automatic so-called "assault weapon."
6) Semi-automatic so-called "assault weapons" are not the choice of criminals (handguns are); are not outgunning law enforcement officers (there is nothing special about them, only their appearances); are not responsible for any increase in crime or drug activity (they have been around for a century), and are rarely used in crimes.
-- Less than four percent of all homicides in the United States involve rifles of any type. No more than 8/10th of 1% of homicides are perpetrated with rifles using military calibers. (And not all rifles using such calibers are usually considered "assault weapons.")
7) Regardless of whether you agree with it or not; Regardless of whether you like it or not, the genuine meaning of the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was intended for the people to be able to protect themselves from the U.S. government in case it becomes tyrannical and attempts to take away the peoples' rights. It was not intended to protect hunters so they may keep their hunting rifles.
-- Recognizing the founders' intent, U.S. citizens who wish to be intellectually honest necessarily must question philosophically any attempt by the U.S. government to disarm its citizens. Is the original intent of the Second Amendment worth protecting? Or should we trust the government that does not trust its citizenry with military replica firearms?
8) For competitive targetshooting, the military design background of some "assault weapons" makes them the most preferred of all firearms. The apex of the world of target shooting is the national target matches held every year Camp Perry, Ohio, under the supervision of the federal government's Civilian Marksmanship Program. In fact, the Colt AR15 Sporter and its ancestors, loaded with 20 or 30 round magazines, have long been required weapons in some Civilian Marksmanship competitions. Most of the other politically incorrect rifles outlawed by the gun bans are usable in other Civilian Marksmanship events, and are highly prized competition target guns.
-- Before the "assault weapon" controversy erupted, the firearms experts with the California Department of Justice had privately warned that "assault weapon" legislation would devastate the world of target competition.
9) Sportsmen have been told for years that the reason gun control advocates targeted handguns was because they were not suitable for militia use, hunting, or selfprotection and were therefore not included under the constitutional safeguard of the Second Amendment. We are now being told by antigun advocates and certain politicians that precisely because many semiautomatic firearms useful for hunting and target shooting are patterned after their military counterparts, they should be banned or heavily restricted in the interest of public safety.
-- What happens when the gun control advocates discover that based on everything they fear -- rate of fire, destructiveness, lethal capabilities -- the real "assault weapon" is the common, everyday twelve gauge shotgun?
10) The entire debate on semiautomatic firearms as a "special category" subject to a gun ban is nothing more that a bill of goods sold to appease a public clamoring for substantive crime control measures. In fact, the designation "assault weapon" for certain semiautomatic firearms with military styling is part of an ongoing effort to capitalize on the confusion over the difference between a semiautomatic firearm and those capable of a fully automatic rate of fire. Because proponents of a semiautomatic ban cannot provide any compelling, legitimate justification, they resort to terminology that is without a specific definition. There is nothing new about semiautomatic firearms, they have been around for more than a century.
-- It's the criminals, stupid.
- - * - -
These facts compiled from "'Assault Weapons' Revisited: An Analysis of the AMA Report" by Edgar A. Suter, M.D., Chairman, Doctors for Integrity in Research & Public Policy; and "The 'Assault Weapon' Panic: 'Political Correctness' Takes Aim at the Constitution" by Eric C. Morgan and David B. Kopel, Independence Institute, Golden, CO.