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An 'Assault Weapon' Ban Won't Stop Mass Shootings

Congress can't "stop the killing...by changing the law."

Richard Graulich/ZUMA Press/NewscomRichard Graulich/ZUMA Press/NewscomYesterday's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, has predictably provoked renewed calls, long on outrage and short on logic, for a federal ban on so-called assault weapons. "We don't want your prayers," writes New York Daily News columnist Linda Stasi, responding to Donald Trump's post-massacre tweet. "What we want from you right now is to ban assault weapons; we want you to make it impossible for civilians to have AR-15s. Period. We want YOU, elected officials, to stop killing our children while praising God. You know nothing of God, because if you did, you phony liars, you'd stop the killing without question by changing the law."

Americans own something like 15 million AR-15-style rifles, which have been one of the biggest-selling firearm categories during the last decade or so. These guns are almost never used to commit violent crimes. According to the FBI, rifles of all kinds accounted for just 3 percent of firearm homicides in 2016, while handguns accounted for 65 percent. Contrary to what you may have heard, handguns are also by far the most common choice for mass shooters. A Mother Jones review of mass shootings from 1982 through 2012 found that 66 percent of the weapons were handguns, while just 14 percent would qualify as "assault weapons" under the definition used in a 2013 bill sponsored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.). More recent data show a similar pattern.

Politicians, activists, and journalists who have decided to blame mass shootings on "assault weapons" either do not acknowledge these facts or wave them away. "While semi-automatic handguns still account for the vast majority of weapons used in mass shootings across the United States," says The Miami Herald, "semi-automatic rifles are increasingly common weapons of choice." How can certain kinds of guns be "weapons of choice" when other guns are chosen much more often?

It is true that the guns Feinstein wants to ban show up more frequently in the modern mass shootings with the highest death tolls. But two points should be kept in mind when considering those attacks.

First, it is clearly possible to carry out attacks similar to yesterday's, which killed 17 people, without using "assault weapons." Nine of the mass shootings with the 20 highest death tolls involved handguns or long guns that are not covered by Feinstein's bill. That includes the third deadliest mass shooting, which killed 32 people at Virginia Tech in 2007, as well as two other attacks that killed 17 or more people.

Second, the fact that the perpetrators of the deadliest mass shootings tend to favor "assault weapons" does not mean that choice makes the attacks deadlier than they otherwise would be. That proposition seems pretty doubtful in light of the "assault weapon" definitions used by legislators, which are based on appearance rather than lethality.

The latest version of Feinstein's bill covers any semiautomatic rifle with a detachable magazine if it also has a pistol grip or forward grip, a grenade launcher or rocket launcher, a barrel shroud, a threaded barrel, or a folding, telescoping, or detachable stock. Those features may help explain why some mass shooters like the looks of these guns (just as Feinstein hates the looks of these guns), but they do not explain why one mass shooter kills 10 people while another kills five.

Feinstein's bill does not apply to the millions of "assault weapons" that are already in circulation, so it would not actually "make it impossible for civilians to have AR-15s," as Linda Stasi recommends. But even if the government could magically make all the guns targeted by Feinstein disappear, there is no reason to believe it would have a noticeable impact on the frequency or lethality of mass shootings. The notion that legislators can "stop the killing...by changing the law" is perennially appealing, but it is completely divorced from reality.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    "What we want from you right now is to ban assault weapons; we want you to make it impossible for civilians to have AR-15s. Period. We want YOU, elected officials, to stop killing our children while praising God. You know nothing of God, because if you did, you phony liars, you'd stop the killing without question by changing the law."

    "We want men with guns to round up guns from men."

    I do like a well reasoned argument.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Ironically excerpted from an op-ed written by someone named Stasi.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Rounding up assault weapons won't stop mass shootings, but it will help stop freedom.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Which is the whole point of the exercise. Austin's favorite mystical whack job is spinning false-flag theories as Infowars, and the constant repetition of government/politician attacks on he Bill of Rights (as in Waco, and all Disarmed Victim Zones) is buttressing his theories better than anything I can imagine.

  • Inigo Montoya||

    I have a feeling that the one thing she shares with Trump is a fondness for a big Wall.

    The STASI were all about the wall, after all.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Hey. There is nothing like a Berliner Mauer to secure a Democratic People's State from the danger of fugitive slaves.

  • Jerryskids||

    You know nothing of God, because if you did, you phony liars, you'd stop the killing without question by changing the law.

    According to the story of Noah and his ark, God is by far the greatest mass murderer in history, wiped out over 99 percent of the entire human race. God's not quite the loving all-father you seem to think he is, I think you may have him confused with Santa Claus.

  • Deflator Mouse||

    All God did was send a bunch of water. The people who died were just as able to build an ark as Noah but they chose not to because they were too busy masturbating or whatever.

  • JeremyR||

    And all the other ships somehow stopped working

  • Hank Phillips||

    They were busy praying for an end to the drought.

  • spec24||

    SO if some wack job comes to you exclaiming he's "talked to God" and insists you build an ark you're going to drop what you're doing and build an ark? Don't be obtuse. God didn't speak to the rest of them, you dipthong. He also didn't speak to the animals who were also drowned. God was a butcher in a the Bible, there is no argument about this.

  • Whorton||

    The left is amazingly ballsy to invoke their hated name of God for anything. .

  • BambiB||

    And the counter argument is... Molon labe.

  • ahohen||

    Question: Why is the murder rate so high in cities that have banned the Right To Bear Arms? If someone breaks into my house they WILL be DEAD and carried out on a stretcher! How about in history where foreign countries completely banned the right to bear arms, then captured and killed them my the millions? (I would be you're a Democrat... what a shame!)

  • Jgalt1975||

    rifles of all kinds accounted for just 3 percent of firearm homicides in 2016, while handguns accounted for 65 percent

    Shotguns, smoothbore muskets, and railguns account for the remaining 22% of firearm homicides?

  • Jgalt1975||

    Sorry, should be 32%.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Zip gun?

  • Whorton||

    Homemade firearm.

  • Jerryskids||

    "Unspecified" would be my guess.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Don't forget directed energy weapons!

  • Shadow_Rider||

    Or phased plasma rifles in the 40 watt range

  • Elias Fakaname||

    I call force fields. So that won't work on me.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    40W won't do much to you regardless.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    I figured that they had a 40W nuclear battery continuously charging a large supercapacitor for the actual firing. So that the 40W merely referred to how much power you could expend over some fixed period of time.

    So analogous to magazine size.

  • BambiB||

    Laser rifles.

  • Consigliere of the Dark Ones||

    According to the link, 2.4% were shotguns, 1.7% were "other guns", and 28% were "Firearms, type not stated".

  • Ben of Houston||

    Realistically, that 28% should be distributed by removing it from the denominator, which would raise the handgun percentage to 90.3%. Given that percentage, it's not too unreasonable to suspect that an officer would simply state "gun" whenever they mean a pistol.

  • Deflator Mouse||

    Railguns aren't firearms.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    A railgun is not a firearm so railguns would account for 0.000% of firearm homicides.

    And it's probably more like 21.9% shotguns and 0.1% muskets.

  • Deflator Mouse||

    0.1% blunderbusses
    0.5% stripped lowers (bludgeoned, dropped from height, etc)
    0.3% Mossberg Shockwaves
    0.2% pistols with added foregrip (AOW)

  • Rat on a train||

    0.0% Tu Huo Qiang

  • Flinch||

    I don't expect congress to actually wrap their tiny heads around anything statistical or scientific. Yes they learn to throw numbers around on queue, but it's just narrative and talking points.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    "Rifles" accounts for all types of long guns, including shotguns, and all calibers, including .22.

  • sarcasmic||

    They need to ban murder. That will stop the killing.

  • Sopater||

    I wonder why no one has thought of that.

    In all seriousness though, I wonder how many people here realize that there actually is no federal law prohibiting murder.

  • Sigivald||

    Sure there is.

    Just not one universally doing so.

    See e.g. 18 USC 1111 and 18 USC 7 for definitions; it's prohibited under Federal law in Federal territory and non-state US territory and various other places under vague Federal jurisdiction.

    It's also illegal under the UCMJ, if you're in the armed forces.

    The States, yes, have to handle murder statutes in the States, as is to be expected.

  • mpercy||

    Also need to ban suicides, since about 2/3 of all gun deaths are suicides.

  • Rat on a train||

    1/2 with the remaining 1/6 being Clinton associates.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Well, when they either outlive their usefulness, or threaten to blow the whistle, what do you expect? And those poor Clinton's, all they're trying to do is make a buck, and establish a family dynasty.

  • Flinch||

    Not the kind of dynasty we need EF, but the sarcasm is duly noted. The dynasty the mandarins created had China suffering for 6 centuries, in a corrupt pinhead society that was pretty much a precursor to what we have on the books right now. The breakout was painful and costly - I don't ever want to see a Mao in operation on US soil. We came damn close to our boots getting set in cement last election cycle. Trump may not be the nations savior, but at least he won't be hitting the nitrous button towards oblivion.

  • BigChiefWahoo||

    I think suicides ARE unlawful. But they only prosecute people for ATTEMPTED suicide, never for suicide itself.

  • Whorton||

    Yeah. . . I have wondered why some enterprising democrat has not called for banning murders in schools.

  • BambiB||

    Don't do that. Just make it a misdemeanor like they did in Kalifornia. (If you use AIDS to do it.)

  • Longtobefree||

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    You cannot pass any legal gun control until you repeal this amendment. Get to work, and quit whining.

  • Consigliere of the Dark Ones||

    The 13th-15th Amendments didn't stop the US from adopting Jim Crow. The 14th Amendment Section 2 even provides remedies against prohibiting people from voting but it was never enforced.

    There are plenty of ways to pass gun control:

    1. Ignore the 2nd Amendment and if the law is overturned as unconstitutional, pass a slightly different law to restart the court challenge.
    2. Interpret the amendment to refer to only members of the militia and make it difficult to join the militia.
    3. Define everyone as members of the militia and interpret "well regulated" to mean what types of arms the militia can own.
    4. Ban guns from the mentally ill and define wanting to buy a gun as a mental illness (compare Drapetomania and sluggish schizophrenia).

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Regarding 2 and 3, this is covered in title 10 USC, Sect 246:

    The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.

  • Consigliere of the Dark Ones||

    Well, there you have it. The prohibitionists will take advantage of that and "well regulated militia" to pass gun control.

  • ||

    He's actually reading a bit out of context. The 2A refers to *A* militia while the USC refers to *The* militia.

    The Militia Act of 1903 doesn't strip anyone of their right to bear arms nor provide militia members with the ability to (e.g.) circumvent the NFA. It merely classifies/clarifies who qualifies to be mobilized as part of the national guard and/or military reserves. Even if it did carry implications with regard to the 2A, it makes no mention of women or men under 17 or over 45 in any way and, as such, wouldn't preclude their pre-existing rights in any fashion.

  • Naaman Brown||

    Not to mention that several states (including New York and Tennessee) have a state militia separate from the National Guard (which became a federal military reserve between the Spanish-America War and World War I).

  • Sigivald||

    So, yeah, "just ignore the Constitution and courts and what they say", all around.

    Because that's what all of those do.

  • BambiB||

    The strongest argument against gun control is the guns themselves. The Founding Fathers intended to ensure that the People would always have the ability to overthrow an oppressive government, but the difficulty has always been in knowing when a government is sufficiently oppressive to merit overthrow. I propose the following test:

    If a Government seeks to confiscate your arms, it is then sufficiently oppressive to merit being overthrown.

    Considering that only 3% of Americans took the field against the government LAST time it was overthrown, and that 3% of current gun owners would constitute a force that would dwarf the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Reserves and all law enforcement at the federal, state and local levels - the odds don't look good for the government. When you consider that a majority of gun owners in Kalifornia and about 94% of gun owners in New Jersey and New York - all liberal bastions - have ignored those states' "assault weapons" laws - it looks even bleaker for the government.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    How do you square criminal prosecutions for child pornography, civil judgments for defamation, and restrictions of solicitations for securities with the First Amendment?

    Also, how would the Second Amendment you describe address armed drunks in bars, armed litigants in courtrooms, and possession of a small thermonuclear device or anti-aircraft weapon on residential property?

    Thank you.

  • Sigivald||

    Why does "residential" property matter, anyway?

  • Juice||

    And why would the thermonuclear device have to be "small"?

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    1. Because it's the right to keep and bear(in other words carry) arms.

    2. The W80 is one of the smallest nuclear warheads in the US arsenal, with a variable yield between 5 and 115 kilotons. It weight in at 290 pounds. You try bearing that.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    The W54, intended as a "backpack" nuke, and other man-portable applications, weighed about 51 lbs. You could "bear" that.

    But I take the 2nd amendment as applying only to weapons that might have been issued to the ordinary soldier.

  • Juice||

    How do you square criminal prosecutions for child pornography, civil judgments for defamation, and restrictions of solicitations for securities with the First Amendment?

    The first and third things on the list do not square with the first amendment. The second thing does not rely on a law made by Congress.

    You're welcome.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "Also, how would the Second Amendment you describe...and possession of a small thermonuclear device or anti-aircraft weapon on residential property?"

    A straight forward textualist reading of the word bear in the "right to keep and bear arms" can easily exclude crew served weapons from the second amendment's protection.

  • Ama-Gi Anarchist||

    A straight forward textualist reading of the word bear in the "right to keep and bear arms" can easily exclude crew served weapons from the second amendment's protection.

    Except you would be wrong since there were civilians who owned cannon as well as frigates and other warships (See Article I, Section 8, Clause 11 for the Letter of Marque & Reprisal for your answer).

    There is a practical limitation on nuclear/biological/chemical weapons: price to procure (not cheap for most of those and the price would likely skyrocket if non-state actors were involved), availability on the market (not many people would consider selling something that destructive to some asshole they didn't know) and storage without being killed by your neighbors (or done in by your own weapon).

    The simple fact is that the Natural Right of Self-Defense allows for us to own any and all goddamn weapons of war that are within our capability of owning including tanks, jet fighters and warships. The 2nd Amendment, btw, is a restriction on the government, not a grant of "which weapons we can own".

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "Except you would be wrong since there were civilians who owned cannon as well as frigates and other warships"

    That they did not prohibit civilian ownership of such weapons in the early years of the union, is not in and of itself proof that they would have considered such a ban unconstitutional.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Well, no, they likely would have regarded a federal ban on such things unconstitutional, simply because the federal government lacked any enumerated power to ban things.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "The 2nd Amendment, btw, is a restriction on the government, not a grant of "which weapons we can own"."

    So, the government is restricted from prohibiting ownership / carrying of some weapons. That doesn't mean that all possible weapons including weapons of mass destruction fall within the scope of that restriction.

    The right protected by the second amendment is the right to keep and bear arms. To bear as is used in the second amendment means to carry. If it's impossible to carry, it's not withing the scope of the right defined by the second amendment.

  • Ama-Gi Anarchist||

    That they did not prohibit civilian ownership of such weapons in the early years of the union, is not in and of itself proof that they would have considered such a ban unconstitutional.

    What the fuck? Seriously?

    So, the government is restricted from prohibiting ownership / carrying of some weapons. That doesn't mean that all possible weapons including weapons of mass destruction fall within the scope of that restriction.

    I already laid out the practical limitations to possessing WMDs. Did you not read that?

    The right protected by the second amendment is the right to keep and bear arms. To bear as is used in the second amendment means to carry. If it's impossible to carry, it's not withing the scope of the right defined by the second amendment.

    You can't bear a horse or a cannon either you fucknut, but The Militia Act of 1793 specified both Cavalry and Artillery as being part of the Militia (which was not the National Guard, btw).

  • PubliusVA||

    Does that mean horses are "arms"?

  • Hank Phillips||

    The Constitution also allows States to respond to incoming fire, which nowadays implies ruining the pits of incoming warheads with neutron emitters. The ABM Treaty and both versions of SALT are unconstitutional. This was hashed out in Physics Today back in 1986. The USSR lasted another six years after that, and its fossilized fifth column is still picking away at the Second Amendment. See Petr Beckmann's Fort Freedom, http://www.fortfreedom.org/w12.htm

  • Whorton||

    Nuclear weapons, anti-aircraft weapons, belt fed machine guns, bazooka's, howitzers, and mortars are considered to be CREW SERVED weapons. They are not within the preview of weapons that one can "bare."

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    "Thermonuclear devices?" Why stop there with the straw men; why not strategic bombers and ICBMs to proffer your specious argument? Hey if a kid can have a .22 rifle why not let him have an Abrams tanks for God's sake?

  • Flinch||

    Hold the phone - the second is crafted primarily to protect the ability of states [governors] to call out the militia, specifically the citizenry which if unarmed are as useless as a pet rock. Post revolution, the crushing debts of our fledgling nation combined with puny collection abilities pretty much nixed a standing federal army [despite authorized powers of the federal government], and Washington was given power to press militia into service in event of foreign invasion. In hindsight, should we as a people have demanded all citizens keep a firearm/ammo like the Swiss? I'm thinking yes. That might have made a difference in mounting a challenge to the disparate treatment of teachers, who suffer deprivations normally reserved for civilians working on a military installation... which are well armed, if they have standing orders that function properly. You might recall a certain author that put egg on a lot of commands faces sometime during Bush [41] tenure in testing their systems - he did such a good job [penetrating at will], I think he is effectively banned from capitol hill to this day.
    Personally, I like the idea of a right to self defense, but we may have to craft a new amendment to solidify that. The states hold the aces [despite a number of other factors leading up to our present day].

  • Joe_JP||

    The First Amendment has the word "no" in it. Doesn't mean controlling speech in various ways is deemed unconstitutional. D.C. v. Heller lists a range of acceptable gun control regulations. Or, is "gun control" a circular term to mean laws deemed unconstitutional?

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "Or, is "gun control" a circular term to mean laws deemed unconstitutional?"

    It's a largely meaningless term. It means too many different things to too many different people. I like Charlton Heston's definition.

    If you aren't willing to talk about specific regulations, you are just blowing smoke.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "Or, is "gun control" a circular term to mean laws deemed unconstitutional?"

    It's a largely meaningless term. It means too many different things to too many different people. I like Charlton Heston's definition.

    If you aren't willing to talk about specific regulations, you are just blowing smoke.

  • Whorton||

    Gun control is "Vague" Nebulous, undefined, meaningless. . .

  • BambiB||

    Repeal would be a necessary, but not sufficient, action to effect repeal.

    The reason is that even the Founders recognized that the Second Amendment protected a pre-existing right. That's why the Second doesn't refer to creating a right, but simply states that the pre-existing right "shall not be infringed".

  • Jerryskids||

    As long as they don't mess with my chainsaw bayonet.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Congress can't "stop the killing...by changing the law."

    They don't want to stop the killing.

    They just want to change the law.

  • Sopater||

    Boom.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Exactly

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    We need a like button.

  • Flinch||

    Is it a coincidence that the decline of public education largely parallels the creation of the Department of Education? A lot of people are bamboozled by this structure still: there are no classrooms, no students, no diplomas - just a grant system to launch cash out the door [minus their cut]. Since that is all that is needed, how about congress just put together educational grants themselves each term? That way, the oversight happens concurrently with funding, and we can do away with some of the DNC money laundering activities hiding inside the executive branch. Some states have sparse areas that make the infrastructure per 100 students a monstrous expense and do need help. Montana, Alaska and others come to mind: low populace per square mile make keeping schools open a bit of a burden. It goes without saying that regular order must be restored for this to happen - no more omnibus bills, as they aid and abet the malfeasance orchestrated by the NEA and others.

  • AlgerHiss||

    Everyone yells "AR15", but never mentions the CALIBER of the AR15.

    Hell, you can get an AR15, or the notorious AK47 in and 22LR.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    The AR15 fires the biggest, most deadliest bullet ever invented and they are forged from pure plutonium. This is known.

    /prog

  • mpercy||

    Because I reload .223, I have the lead at home. A non-gun savvy friend actually said something like that, so I made a small assembly of different bullets, including the .223 and a .22LR bullet (not including the cartridge). He was actually quite surprised at really just how small a .223 bullet from an AR-15 is. Sure the bigger cartridge gives it a lot more power than a .22LR, but the bullets just are hugely different. Especially sitting next to the .357 magnum...

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    You really want to wow your friend over how small the .223 round is, put it next to a .50 BMG round.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

  • Rat on a train||

    Everyone ducks when they hear the ma deuce open up. Same for a hog. Not so much for the weasel.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    Doesn't have to be an M2 (ma deuce), the Barret sniper rifle fires .50 BMG.

  • Don't look at me.||

    You really want to wow your friend over how small the .223 round is, put it next to my wiener.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    I think you reversed the 'weiner' And '.223 round' in that sentence.

  • Don't look at me.||

    I may not be popular with the ladies, but at least you know I'm not a liar.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    No, I don't.

  • Whorton||

    Have you been hanging around Huma Abedin's husband again?

  • Deflator Mouse||

    What about the AR-16?

  • Flinch||

    Ah, I miss my 5.1 sound system for my computer that self destructed. Really made the game come alive.

  • Chasman1965||

    It never made it out of prototype stage.

    http://guns.wikia.com/wiki/ArmaLite_AR-16

  • Juice||

    Someone today said, "you don't need an AR-15 to hunt deer!" Right. .223 is not powerful enough. You need a larger round.

  • JSR2||

    Go google ar15 hunting and tell me that again.

  • Morbo||

    Eh.... .223 really is bumping right up against the edge of being "too small". I sure as hell wouldn't use it on mule deer. Black tail or white tail, within a couple hundred yards, sure, but nothing bigger or further.

    Great for coyote and smaller sized game, though.

    There's a reason it's called a poodle shooter.

  • Myk||

    I saw one they don't use AR-15s to hunt with. I didn't want an AR until I found out I could use open sights, and I use it for coyote hunting. You don't NEED an AR-15 to hunt coyotes. It's a great varmint round/rifle.

    And he doesn't need a car which kills 2x more people plus global warming.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    The AR-15 is available in more calibers that just .223/5.56mm Nato.

    Other popular AR-15 calibers/chamberings are:

    .300 Blackout
    6.5 Grendel
    6.8 SPC
    .458 SOCOM
    .50 Beowulf

  • MatthewSlyfield||

  • Flinch||

    Thanks for the laugh, UA. Progs really are that dumb.

  • mpercy||

    One of my most favorite guns is my Smith & Wesson M-22, which is an AR-looking chambered in 22LR. Fun as hell to shoot and tons cheaper for a day of plinking.

    Prior to getting the M-22, I had a similar looking gun that was made by buying a stock Ruger 10/22. You know, a gun that looks like a non-scary black rifle. I bought $100 worth of plastic in a new stock and barrel shroud, and removed the barrel, trigger, etc. from the wooden stock and into the now scary-looking black plastic stock and shroud.

    So I had the same exact firing mechanism, same exact barrel, same exact operating capabilities (magazine capacity)--the same exact lethality--but it now qualified as an assault weapon...but it didn't before. $100 worth of plastic ought not to do that...

    Once I bought the M-22, I ended up giving the converted 10/22 to my niece as an extra Christmas present a few years ago. At 16, she loved it.

  • mpercy||

    Apparently the HTML ate the name of the gun due to the ampersand. It's an M&.P15-22.

  • Flinch||

    AR's look cool, but I can't think I would ever want to own one. They are some kind of SWAT team ego trophy to me on balance. There are better long guns and better entry weapons to choose from, and a shotgun is still the best self defense weapon going - you do not want to retain energy through drywall, as it could be a loved one in a place/time that you didn't expect because... panic can cause dumb decisions in a home invasion scenario.

  • Morbo||

    If you're using a proper defensive shotgun round (i.e. buckshot or a slug), you're going to retain energy through drywall. Physics is a bitch.

  • PubliusVA||

    Too right. Buckshot going through walls may even be more dangerous than a 5.56mm round because the shot pattern will spread like crazy, making it more likely that anyone in the next room over (or the room beyond that) will be hit.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    The shotgun has long been regaled as "the best" for home defense, but there are a lot of arguments against it as well. For one, they do not provide a large spread of shot within short distances, so require you to be just as accurate as with any other type of gun in order to actually hit someone. And don't think that buckshot will not penetrate through a wall or other barriers just as an FMJ bullet would. All the more so for slugs. And then there's the blast and flash that can temporarily cause night blindness, not to mention loss of hearing. And as for racking the slide in the hope of scaring off an intruder, that might work but if a person has broken into your home knowing you are inside, I would assume the worse and shoot first rather than put them on notice as to 1] you know your presence is known and 2] telling you have a shotgun and 3] a pretty good idea of where you are and where they can place the first shot, if they so choose.

  • Chasman1965||

    While I prefer my pistol, when I get too old to shoot a pistol, I'm getting an AR for home defense. An AR with the right ammo penetrates less sheetrock than does a 12-gauge.

  • DrZ||

    What was wrong with this depraved individual. Didn't he know it was illegal to carry a gun on to this school campus? I mean no one else had a gun - they knew it was illegal.

    Perhaps if the mentally ill were better informed?

  • Naaman Brown||

    Most mentally ill are not deranged to the point that they are a danger to others or even to themselves. The guy was not simply mentally ill, He was mentally deranged and if reports are correct had a year to plan.

    In US and British prison interviews of gun using offenders, prison inmates state they believe they could acquire a gun from an illegal source within a week of release from prison. The British survey was ten years after the famous 1996 handgun ban in Britain; it described the rise of a case of criminal called armourers.

    Oslo, Norway, 22 Jul 2011, Anders Breivik shot 69 people to death at a youth camp on Utoya Island after detonating bombs that killed 8 in Oslo as a distraction, the worst death toll (77) in any single-person mass killing spree so far. He spent years planning, including trips to other countries chasing black market leads. Erfurt, Germany, 26 Apr 2002, a former student killed 18 at a secondary school. Winnenden, Germany, 11 Mar 2009, a 17-year-old former student killed 15 people: 9 students, 3 teachers, and 3 others.

    We have actors, with motive to kill, opportunity to put lives in danger, with months or years to plan a deranged act of revenge, and the answer is to fixate on one means? Why not focus on the actors with motive, or strategies to deny opportunity?

  • Deflator Mouse||

    You don't want to make the handguns vs rifles argument too hard -- they want to ban handguns too. And there are still four justices on the court who subscribed to an opinion saying the 2nd amendment can be overridden by a government's desire to prevent crime.

  • Sigivald||

    " a grenade launcher or rocket launcher"

    One seriously wonders if Feinstein and her ilk think "rocket launchers" are something guns actually have.

    Or that grenades and rockets are something people actually have or ever use in "mass shootings".

    Yeah, some old rifles have rifle grenade lugs on the barrels. For firing special rifle grenades by using a special blank shell to launch them. It's '50s technology at best, and you can't buy any of the grenades.

    You can also get a 37mm "grenade launcher" for a rifle now, with no hoops.

    Problem is there are no explosive grenades in that size, which is why there are no hoops.

    The military 40mm ones are NFA-regulated "destructive devices", as is each individual grenade, assuming you can find even one for sale.

    At a separate FBI background check and $200 tax stamp each, even DiFi might admit they're not a problem.

    The entire non-issue of them is a pathetic scare tactic, as always.

  • Rat on a train||

    I was tempted to purchase the Hellfire attachment but splurged for the Tomahawk.

  • Juice||

    Or that grenades and rockets are something people actually have or ever use in "mass shootings".

    You know they would if they had access to them. Just sayin.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "Problem is there are no explosive grenades in that size, which is why there are no hoops."

    No grenades, but there are flare/smoke bomb reloading/hand-loading kits. I wonder if anyone's tried to load one with buck shot?

  • Cynical Asshole||

    We want YOU, elected officials, to stop killing our children

    Yeah, elected officials (RethugliKKKanz, especially) are LITERALLY KILLING CHILDREN.

    you'd stop the killing without question by changing the law.

    Because laws are magic that way.

    Christ, what a nimrod.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    wprds on a piece of paper are all powerful like magic spells. He probably thinks an assault weapons ban law is like creating a 'scroll of +5 protection against assault weapons'.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    wprds on a piece of paper are all powerful like magic spells

    In that case, why not pass a law making murder illegal, that way no one will ever be murdered again. Better yet, let's just go ahead and ban death so we'll all live forever. And don't get me started on those pesky Laws of Thermodynamics. Those need to repealed, along with the Laws of Economics! /sarc, obviously

  • Longtobefree||

    And give everyone a bag of holding, so no one will ever be without food again.

  • Ama-Gi Anarchist||

    *turns on angry Grognard mode*

    That would be a Ring of Sustenance you fake nerd!

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    Or a horn of plenty.

  • ChrisC517||

    "We can't stop all of them, so we shouldn't try to stop any of them." - great logic from Reason

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    When you come up with an idea that might actually stop some of them (note: none of the existing proposals qualify) we can talk about it.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    PS

    Doing something ineffective is NOT better than doing nothing.

  • Flinch||

    Stop the imbalance! That sign outside a school of a gun with a red line drawn over it is a 5 star seal of approval for the criminal and the deranged - it's their green light to mayhem and murder. The police embedded as "resource officers" in schools clearly is not a fix - they haven't stopped a single spree from Columbine to today, so lift the quiet burden off of teachers who want to defend themselves. Remember, school boards convene on their own special turf with uniformed officers present for all proceedings, so they will be the last to figure out what is happening to any campus under their alleged control and misdirection.
    It's worth noting where this kind of thing IS NOT happening, and in a very blue state at that: attempts like this in Los Angeles generally do not take place because nobody knows which gang banger brought a piece to school that day, and a perp is pretty much assured return fire from any number of classrooms. Maybe in some outlier community like Thousand Oaks this might happen, but not in Maxine's back yard, no sir.

  • Whorton||

    Most of them sit on their ass in the office all day, baring that, they shake down kids and check their phone for sexting pics. Somehow they feel busting the juve sexting gang will improve their career chances.

  • SunkCost||

    So, because trained, armed police officers were unable to stop a guy with an AR-15, we need to arm the untrained teachers... Yeah, that'll do the trick.

  • Juice||

    "We don't want your prayers,"

    Cool, cuz I don't have any for ya.

  • Don't look at me.||

    They don't do anything anyway.

  • Flinch||

    If we're going to ban something, let's start with one of the groups that put hacks in congress to create the unarmed Criminal Enterprise Zones we laughingly call schools: teachers unions. The kids come dead last, and now it isn't even funny - our kids are paying the price for their lunatic fringe policies. I don't mean to beat up on teachers - there are a few in my family. Most are fine people, but one is a dyed in the wool sourpuss that is likely part of the problem. She didn't start out that way... she just got bent by their propaganda, poor soul, and may never get back to normal. Union goons out - make the kids number one again.

  • jerbigge||

    Consider the common practice today of drugging children (usually boys) so that they "stay quiet" in school. Medication for "attention deficit disorder" is now commonplace. However, these drugs also have a "rebound" effect if not taken as prescribed. I was an eye witness to such an event some years ago and the young man in question was frankly pretty "scary" when he'd "forgotten" to take his medication. These sort of drugs also can effect adults the same way. The individual forgets to take his or her medication, or the prescription runs out and the "rebound" effect hits!

    If someone already is having "problems", the use of these medications may make them worse.

  • Longtobefree||

    So, the bumper sticker "support mental health or I'll kill you" was right?

  • Flinch||

    Steve Martin had it right: Comedy Isn't Pretty. Whenever these things happen, I always get that vision of a certain special spectator in the Happy Gilmore movie with a t-shirt proudly proclaiming 'Guns don't kill people, I kill people'

  • Joe_JP||

    Linda Stasi is a local gossip columnist. Maybe, we can use someone else to refute. Like a random twitter comment.

    "While semi-automatic handguns still account for the vast majority of weapons used in mass shootings across the United States," says The Miami Herald, "semi-automatic rifles are increasingly common weapons of choice." How can certain kinds of guns be "weapons of choice" when other guns are chosen much more often?"

    They are not "the" weapons of choice by the very thing quoted. The argument is that it is "increasingly" being so. I'm sure you can still refute the Miami Herald, but like using someone other than a gossip columnist, perhaps try a bit harder. I am sympathetic with the criticism here but the idea is that this sort of weapon is low hanging fruit as compared to something else. It is a small thing that there is some possibility of addressing. And, it need not be the only thing done. As to the amount of weapons in circulation, you got to start somewhere.

    A major reduction of gun deaths will require more than this and if other things are done, fine enough. But, one more thing. It is not a matter of "stopping" them, as in ending them. Laws and regulations that make it harder to get them, perhaps more importantly certain people from getting them, might help somewhat. But, if the point is more has to be done, that's fine. I agree.

  • gad-fly||

    In 1962 John F. Kennedy's signed the Community Mental Health Act of 1963. This legislation marked the beginning of the de-institutionalization of the mentally-retarded. Mental patients would forever be treated only on an outpatient basis. Asylum's were now in the past and the retarded were returned to familial care.

    Suddenly a new medical practice called psychotherapy appeared. Drug companies joined the mix. Dr. Marcia Angell, tells how drug therapy was developed with the logic, "fevers are caused by too little aspirin!" Suddenly, the theory arose that mental illness is chemical abnormality that is countered by an appropriate drug. That was a great leap in logic that drugs that could relieve symptoms even if neurotransmitters had nothing to do with the illness in the first place.

    Eli Lilly received approval of Prozac, a selective saratonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) anti-depressant in 1987 - and now big problems have been recognized. Episodic depression has now been replaced by chronic depression among SSRI users and the relapse rate for the drug is 85%.

    Then came Columbine in 1999 - complete with two out-of-control shooters likely high on SSRI drugs. Eric Harris was confirmed as taking the SSRI, Luvox, For some strange reason, Dylan Klebold's medical records have been sealed - but he, like Harris exhibited anti-social and anger-management issues.

  • ||

    The math does not seem to work. 65 percent of homicides are committed with handguns. Three percent with rifles. So what are the thirty two percent committed with -- shotguns?

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    Shotguns,

    Knives

    Ye olde blunt instrument

    Poison.

    There's probably even a few using bow and arrows.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

  • Whorton||

    Where the hell was ANTFI? If this kid isn't a facist, I don't know what is. . .

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Probably were going to recruit him when he got a bit older.

  • Fmontyr||

    Say, Jake, you miss the point of the Second Amendment. It was written to allow the gun technology of the day, muzzle-loading muskets, to be born by members of the militia. All of this crap about advanced technology guns of today must be allowed is nonsense. Nothing in the Constitution states that AR-15's are allowed to be in the hands of citizens. I was under the impression that you and others of the Reason staff were strict Constitutionalists. Fail?

  • Ama-Gi Anarchist||

    Nothing in the Constitution states that AR-15's are allowed to be in the hands of citizens. I was under the impression that you and others of the Reason staff were strict Constitutionalists. Fail?

    Are you a fucking retard or something? Did I miss a sarcasm tag somewhere? The 2nd Amendment (in fact, NO AMENDMENT) to the Constitution grants rights. They are restrictions on the government of PRE-EXISTING RIGHTS. You get your rights from your humanity (whether you believe they derive from The Creator or Evolution, its the same principle) and the government is not allowed to restrict them. It also doesn't matter one fucking iota what The Founders may (or may not have) envisioned because technology always changes. Furthermore, so as to not look like a moronic jackass who doesn't understand the actual military history of the era, do yourself a favor and Google: Giradoni Air Rifle and Puckle Gun.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    The US Supreme Court in the case of D.C. v. Heller explicitly rejected the argument that only arms that existed at the time of the found are protected by the second amendment.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    found -> founding.

  • MarkLastname||

    And, moreover, "freedom of the press" refers to the printing press, NOT computers and digital media, ergo those can constitutionally be restricted as much as anyone wants.

    AND, even more relevant: freedom of speech? No mention of wireless audio communication. I mean, obviously you can't regulate "speech", but you can regulate what people can transmit over radio, phones, etc. I mean, did the constitution mention phones, radios, computers, any of this advanced technology? Nope! So regulate away!

  • SunkCost||

    To be fair, Scalia pulled that close textual reading of the meaning of the founders' words at the time of writing trick to kill whatever government program he wanted...

  • XM||

    We do this song and dance every time there's been a mass shooting. The democrats will not educate themselves on this matter. These are people who think innocent lives will be lost due to Trump's tax cuts and the repeal of NN. Even if they somehow ban all "rifle" looking guns, the supreme court will likely side with saner minds. There are vids showing (unmodified) AR-15 fire rates, people should not be this uninformed.

    I'm with David French and others about being more proactive and vigilant in identifying would be shooters. The FBI was investigating Cruz because he literally posted "I want to be a school shooter" on Youtube. The FBI was looking at a lot of recent mass shooters, including the SB shooters. What did they miss? How did they miss Cruz's connection the white nationalist movement (assuming that report is true)?

    Do you believe that right now, James Comey is a hero to some people? I don't believe that the FBI gave up on these freaks because their thorough search (snicker) turned up no evidence.

  • Tionico||

    There is another explanation for this shooter's choice of tool that none of these gummit hooh hahs have suggested" this kid was 19 years old. So what, you say. Well, at 18 any ostensibly law abiding permanent resident can purchase a long gun from an FFL. These same people must wait till they pass their 21st birthday to lawfully be able to purchase any handgun from an FFL. This explains two things: why this guy used a long gun (he could legally buy a long gun but not a handgun), and also why so many teenag gangbangers in the big cities all use handguns... they are VERY common on the black market.

    This twisted perp already committed quite a number of felonies long before he opened fire. Since he had no compunction concerning THOSE felonies, how can anyone assume he'd hesitate two nanosconds over violating DiFi's new felony proposal.

    Any news yet as to what pharmaceutical substances this guy was on?

  • MLS13||

    To associate 'freedom' with having an assault rifle when you are a civilian is also divorced from reality. Fact is, civilians don't need assault rifles and while of course a ban would not completely stop school shootings, you would certainly see a reduction- this is proven all over the world where countries have gun control laws. One would be not only divorced from reality, but also divorced from reason to think otherwise. Freedom has nothing to do with being able to own an assault rifle.

  • Thrackmoor||

    You don't need restaurants, cars or a computer, either. Yet, you have the computer at least. To associate freedom with having a computer when you are a civilian is also divorced from reality. I could repeat your argument word-for-word using "computer" instead of "assault rifle" and get the same effect. Since when do you, or anyone for that matter, get to decide what I legally own. "Assault rifles," as you incorrectly use the term, are just another firearm. Your hoplophobia doesn't get to interfere with my rights as long as I follow the NAP.

  • DesigNate||

    Fuck off, slaver.

  • Stephen Lathrop||

    That proposition seems pretty doubtful in light of the "assault weapon" definitions used by legislators, which are based on appearance rather than lethality.

    All that means is that folks with gun knowledge don't cooperate with others who have less knowledge, so the others just keep repeating errors for want of forthright help from people who know.

    It's easy to define the problem in terms of lethality, while also zeroing in on assault weapons. What makes them especially lethal are the very factors behind the military's choice of essentially identical weapons for combat needs. Three factors stand out. It is their use in combination which makes a typical civilian assault weapon dangerous:

    1. Use of inexpensive, light-weight, light-recoil, high-velocity ammunition.

    2. Semi-automatic operation—offering excellent approximation of fully-automatic by adding legal bump stocks.

    3. Detachable magazines.

    Engineer those 3 design factors into one weapon, and it becomes unreasonably dangerous for civilian use.

    The OP's other main points are similarly weak. It is not a forthright comment on public gun dangers—a subject Sullivan appears to care about only to the extent that it can be evaded, hidden, or dismissed.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "All that means is that folks with gun knowledge don't cooperate with others who have less knowledge"

    You've got this backwards. The people drafting this sort of legislation have nothing but contempt for anybody who has actual knowledge of firearms. It isn't that we won't talk to them, it's that they won't listen. We're the enemy as far as they're concerned.

  • gagster||

    All that means is that folks with gun knowledge don't cooperate with others who have less knowledge, so the others just keep repeating errors for want of forthright help from people who know.

    Knowledgeable gun owners are preventing gun control advocates from reading books and web sites that talk about guns? How exactly are they doing that?

  • sumit singh||

    lets start joining Government Jobs

  • Rebel Scum||

    An 'Assault Weapon' Ban Won't Stop Mass Shootings

    And it would be patently unconstitutional.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Thank goodness gun nuts have tied their political wagon to the party that will be dragged into electoral irrelevance by its reliance on bigotry, backwardness, superstition, and belligerent ignorance as the American electorate improves (less rural, less religious, less white, less backward, less bigoted).

    I hope the backlash against gun nuttery does not diminish an American's right to possess a reasonable firearm for self-defense in the home.

  • Rebel Scum||

    reasonable firearm for self-defense in the home

    That's what 2A means, at least not only. As mentioned at length above, the overwhelming majority of current firearms regulation is not consistent with the Constitution. The trouble is that people refuse to follow original intent and define words in the document as they would have been upon its passing. Well-regulated means functioning. Militias are comprised of citizens that provide their own arms. And arms means instruments intended for fighting. At the very least, anything that a person may carry on his/her person (pretty much any rifle) falls handily under 2A protection. And as an extension there was private ownership of warships and cannon at the time of the country's founding. This suggests that modern artillery and armed ships fall within 2A protection.

  • Hank Phillips||

    It worries me to see Sullum and other Reason writers using the appeal to clairvoyance, prophesy or Revelation of future events in response to insincere shrieking-on-cue by a totalitarian fifth column. Have stratagems for influencing morons suddenly become some sort of Deep Science Persuasion tool? I would bet money that spontaneous aggression exists because 96.7% of the population taxed to subsidize media electioneering is perforce conditioned to vote for the initiation of force. We the 3.28% who actually bother to cast law-changing spoiler votes against aggression realize that in the PAST--during Prohibition, mass conscription drives, the War on Plant Leaves and the establishment of Disarmed Victim Zones by threat of Fines, Arrest and Imprisonment--violence upticks resulted. As mystical Republicans and Altrurian Democrats invariably respond with additional coercion in their bipartisan drive to repeal the Bill of Rights, we can hardly expect truth or sincerity from them.

  • mattsylvest256||

    It would have stopped This shooting...

    I am a Libertarian leaning person, but the Libertarian unrestrained position on guns is completely alienating.

    Weapons of War do not have to be legal for hunters to hunt etc.

    Gun Lust is for weak dick-less losers; I will no longer pretend otherwise.

  • Rebel Scum||

    Weapons of War

    2A applies to "weapons of war". Well-regulated means functioning. Militias are comprised of citizens that provide their own arms. And arms means instruments intended for fighting. At the very least, anything that a person may carry on his/her person (pretty much any rifle) falls handily under 2A protection.

  • mattsylvest256||

    Don't Care - Change the amendment...

    Also - Honestly, why am I then prevented from carrying a shoulder rocket launcher. Really, where does it end.

  • Rebel Scum||

    Change the amendment

    Good luck. And good luck trying to seize the 300+ million guns currently in private hands in the US.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    No one is talking about a "should rocket launcher" straw man. Is that the best you fucking progs can come up with, "well why not just let everyone have their own nuclear armed ICBM?" for Christs sake. You add absolutely nothing to any worthwhile discussion.

  • mattsylvest256||

    I am no prog... And that is no straw man it is used to depict that there are in fact limits to weapons one can own but where is the line...

  • colorblindkid||

    A Muslim ban would have prevented 9/11. Doesn't mean it would have been worth it.

  • mattsylvest256||

    If you are talking about Islamists.... Yes...

  • DesigNate||

    Libertarians don't have "gun lust", but it's readily apparent you suffer from hoplophobia.

    At any rate, at least you agree that to reach your desired end requires actually changing the constitution. That puts you a step above most other people.

  • mattsylvest256||

    Libertarians do not necessarily have gun lust but people with gun lust do have gun lust /they are gun losers and Libertarians should distance themselves from them... I lean LB and i do....

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    The 2nd Amendment has absolutely nothing to do with hunting. It is not mentioned or addressed for that specific purpose in any way. As for "weapons of war" that trope was pretty well spent by our last dick-less POTUS in his usual emotional bait and switch routines.

    As for your polemics re "dick less losers" you may or may not pretend any fucking way it suits you. In other words, fuck off slaver.

  • mattsylvest256||

    If I have upset you enough to shout profanity I am successfull... If the shoe fits....

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Weapons of War do not have to be legal for hunters to hunt etc.

    You can be killed just as easily with a lever-action .30 caliber as you can with an AR-15.

  • SunkCost||

    Not if you're the 9th person to be shot at:
    https://www.quora.com/ How-many-rounds-does-a- Winchester-30-30-lever-action-hold

  • Msgaff||

    Where were all these shootings between 1956 and 1999? The AR-15 has been out for so long. Why don't we all admit what is happening. Society has changed as a whole. Children are not disciplined as they used to be instead rewarded for every little thing they accomplish. When I was in school I wasn't given breakfast in honor of my grades, I was told good job now go help with the bushes or take out the trash or help with the dishes.
    No one has responsibilities anymore. Take, take and take some more.
    You think taking away guns is the answer. Think again. How many states still have marijuana/heroin illegal yet somehow these crazy quacks keep smoking it. How are they getting the weed/heroin!? Oh yes, from the streets. You think they won't find another way to kill the innocent, you are terribly wrong.
    Face up- blaming the NRA, the government or the gun is not helping your case. How about blaming everything in society that has changed and not all for the better.

  • mattsylvest256||

    In this case It would have made a difference,... Those kids, our kids are not worth some seedy desire to play with military weapons. I am not talking about hunting tools or even a side am...

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Those kids, our kids are not worth some seedy desire to play with military weapons. I am not talking about hunting tools or even a side am...

    Hey dumbass, you know what weapons the VA Tech shooter used? It wasn't "military weapons." The Aurora shooter? Read the police report and you know what ended up doing the most damage? His sidearms.

    The only reason you shitlibs are bent out of shape about AR-15s is because they look scary.

  • BTR||

    Why haven't any of these shootings been executed with fully automatic rifles? A) Because they are inaccessible*. B) Because mass shooters are acquiring their guns legally. If someone is going to the gun store to buy a rifle to kill as many people as possible they would reach for the semi-auto when the auto is available to them? And that *is* where they are getting them, not the street.

    It is currently possible to personally own and operate a fully automatic rifle with exhaustive training and vetting.

    Don't change the 2nd amendment. Update NFA Class III to include ARs.

  • mferguson||

    Get the kids off "anti-psychotic, anti-depressant" drugs which have been the common denominator of every mass shooting for decades, yet the media looks the other way, to guns... most likely to shield their Big Pharma advertising buddies.
    https://goo.gl/c5hkX3

  • HillTown Trader||

    why would having a pistol grip in front of the stock subject any gun to a ban? looks?

  • Dustin1311||

    The author correctly states that, "Nine of the mass shootings with the 20 highest death tolls involved handguns or long guns that are not covered by Feinstein's bill." However, let's set aside proposed laws, which are almost always flawed and have negative unintended consequences.
    One of my TO weapons during OIF was an M4, an amazing weapon. Accurate (500 meters point tgt), reliable if cared for, and very deadly (700-950 cyclic rate). I'm grateful for this weapon.
    However, do I want this weapon available to any 18 year old adult? Absolutely not.
    Am I OK with not being able to take my M4 home with me? Yes. If we could decrease the potential lethality of mass shootings, isn't it worth giving up some of our rights?
    Do I want to live in a society where people openly carry ARs in cities and suburban areas? No, thanks.
    Do I want my kids' teachers to be armed? No, unless they have received at least as much initial weapons training as police officers or I did in the military. In my opinion, that will lead to more NDs and accidental deaths than lives saved. Plus, what kind of mentality does that bring to a learning environment?
    I am fine protecting my home with less lethal weapons than ARs. I don't know the percentage of situations where an AR would have made a significant difference over a shotgun, pistol, or other rifle (e.g. lever action) during home defense, but I don't think it offsets the harm ARs have caused.

  • BTR||

    Exactly. I think anyone with more than passing experience with ARs respects them enough to understand how dangerous it is to make them available to anyone without appropriate training.

  • CGN||

    Feinstein is as dumb as an ox. She barely knows how to do her govt. job, much less any other. Ignore EVERYTHING she says.

  • eddyjames||

    She knows exactly what to do with her job! Enrich herself, friends and family members and get re-elected.

  • Jakester||

    Making anything illegal automatically makes it harder and more expensive to obtain, as well as running the risk of arrest.

  • DickW||

    2nd Amendment has reached trash by date. I am not willing to sacrifice 2 high schools/week to the 2nd Amendment.

    Repeal now. Melt down all assault rifles. I'm with Dianne.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Go fuck yourself, gun grabber--or at least have the balls to come and try taking away those guns yourself instead relying on the government to do it for you.

  • Naaman Brown||

    Two high schools a week.

    We have always gotten fake statistics from the antis, but this is ridiculous.

    Seems calculated to make people roll their eyes and ignore them.

  • eddyjames||

    What I would like to see happen, Is for congress to enact a law that bans Murder, no matter what the choice of weapon used. A law that everybody obeys.

  • BTR||

    Why haven't these mass killings been executed with more powerful weapons, such as fully automatic rifles or grenades? Because they are banned from sale. If they weren't, these would be the weapons of choice for mass murderers. And the death tolls would have been higher than even what we've seen.

    As a multiple gun owner, I'm willing to surrender my more high powered toys if it means saving the lives of children. We've all had our fun, but it's now coming at the expense of human lives. For appropriate defense, target, and hunting firearms, licensing seems like a reasonable solution. I guarantee that if a licensing system were created, and the registration was walked through to enact licenses, 99.9% of gun owners would remain gun owners. And we would disarm 0.1% of the population who would abuse their weapons.

    Would it work immediately? No. It would work eventually. Just like the banning of fully automatic weapons did. It's worth noting that there is a process in place to *legally* own and operate fully automatic firearms which involves exhaustive vetting, training, and education. We already do it. Why not add another class of weapon that is obviously being abused?

    Would it get the body count to zero? Doubtful. But in ten years when my son is in high school, the odds of him becoming a victim of bullet in a school shooting would be dramatically reduced.

    Think critically about this issue. Just saying "2nd amendment" ad infinitum isn't a valid argument. There can be a balance.

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