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Tue Dec 18, 2012, 09:59 AM

The significant differences between the U.S. and Switzerland re: Guns

The Swiss for example do not have open or concealed carry.

When their military sends guns home with their members, they do NOT include ammunition; those guns in the home are kept unloaded.

In Switzerland, guns in the home have declined, while private gun ownership has been responsible for an increase in domestic homicides, almost exclusively homicides of women.

There are except for the most superficial statistics almost NO valid comparisons between the Swiss and the U.S.

Similarly, gun laws and practices in Israel, the other country most suggested as posing desirable gun practices and laws, have very little private gun ownership, but lots and lots of military guns being carried, which makes comparisons of guns in schools and other comparisons not really very useful or valid.

Here is an interesting comparison / contrast article from the International Business Times:


"Switzerland has gotten its gun control legislation more in line with European standards," explained Killias, in order to meet regulatory pre-requisites for joining the Schengen Zone, which allows for easier trade and travel between member countries.

"As a result, the number of Swiss households with guns has gone down substantially in recent years." Today, many soldiers elect not to keep the guns they are issued during their military service.

More background checks have been put into place, and it has been made illegal to carry guns in public. Furthermore, it was decided in 2007 that government-issued guns would not come with ammunition; that is now stored in centralized arsenals, outside the home, for emergency use. So, as military spending goes down and personal firearm regulations intensify, guns in Switzerland are more frequently seen as tools for national -- not personal -- defense.

Hitting the Target

Given the different roles of firearms in Swiss and U.S. society, it is apparent that any comparison regarding the correlation between firearm ownership and crime rates is muddled by countless other factors. The Swiss have guns and are trained to operate them, but they don't always have ammo and -- most importantly of all -- have little to fight about.

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Arrow 14 replies Author Time Post
Reply The significant differences between the U.S. and Switzerland re: Guns (Original post)
Dog Gone at Penigma Dec 2012 OP
discntnt_irny_srcsm Dec 2012 #1
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #3
discntnt_irny_srcsm Dec 2012 #5
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #6
gejohnston Dec 2012 #7
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #8
gejohnston Dec 2012 #9
discntnt_irny_srcsm Dec 2012 #10
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #14
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #2
Tuesday Afternoon Dec 2012 #11
Democracyinkind Dec 2012 #12
Tuesday Afternoon Dec 2012 #13
jody Dec 2012 #4

Response to Dog Gone at Penigma (Original post)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:12 AM

1. However...

...in Switzerland, ammo for these arms remains available for commercial sale including hollow point ammo for hunters.

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Response to discntnt_irny_srcsm (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:18 AM

3. The intent is not to have commercially available ammo for mil weapons

Granted, in practice that doesn't work too well.

on edit - hollow point bullets for hand guns are illegal too.

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Response to Democracyinkind (Reply #3)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:57 AM

5. regarding...

"The intent is not to have commercially available ammo for mil weapons"
I infer that the government might disdain the idea of supplying both the arms and ammo for someone who might become homicidal and use them to kill.

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Response to discntnt_irny_srcsm (Reply #5)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 11:01 AM

6. Yes. That is also why...

... they stopped giving away the standard issue 50 rounds of ammo to each soldier after yearly training is concluded. They finally figured out that availability was a key factor in all suicides and killings with military weapons.

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Response to Democracyinkind (Reply #3)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 01:18 PM

7. so you can't buy rounds of that caliber?

they don't sell, say bolt actions, in that caliber? The article concentrates on militia rifles, but I missed the part about 2 million private weapons. The treaty affected each country differently. It started a registration in Switzerland, and they started regulating private sales. Finland raised the age to buy a gun from 15-18.

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Response to gejohnston (Reply #7)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 01:56 PM

8. I don't quite get how that works either...

The standard issued military rifle uses 5,56 45 mm ammo, (.223 i guess?).

From personal experience, they don't sell swiss made ammo of that calibre in private shops, though you can buy those from you local militia gun range. You can buy "hunting" .223 ammo in private shops, italian and russian made mostly, but my gunnuttish friend tells me that they're "i'll fitting" and are therefore useless as far as range sports are concerned.

I keep reading and hearing that it is illegal to sell the "official" military ammo but I can't find the supposed law behind that. Since the ammo manufacter is state-owned, they probably have an understanding with the gov about not selling to private dealers - at least that's my educated guess.

Bottom line, whatever the laws and intentions behind it are- you can get ammo for military issued rifles without any problems. That ammo, though isn't useful for sports but probanly be suitable to commit crimes (even massacres).

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Response to Democracyinkind (Reply #8)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 02:24 PM

9. once you leave the milita you keep the gun

I'm sure you would want to take it to the range. Military ammo is less useful for hunting because it doesn't expand and less likely to kill the animal instantly. Hunting ammo would be banned by international agreement for military use. While people in the US buy military surplus ammo for target practice because it is cheap, it is not suitable for hunting. I think your friends might be saying it isn't good for precision shooting. You don't need ISSF precision in war. If it were suitable for hunting, it would violate the Hague convention of 1899. I don't know about the deer in Europe, but if I were to go back to hunting, I would not use that round for two reasons:
it's illegal in Wyoming, and won't drop a mule deer or antelope.
it's too light in the thick Florida brush, and might be illegal too. Either way, I think it would be too light for deer there too other than key deer. Boar, which are invasive, I want something big.

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Response to gejohnston (Reply #9)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 04:49 PM

10. Some observations

The Swiss no longer send home ammo but compatible ammo is commercially available.
The Swiss partially fund ammo bought at your local range for target shooting but prohibit its removal from the range.

The Swiss give their militia the option of keeping their government issued firearms (including select fire assault rifles) at the end of your service. If you elect to keep a select fire rifle it is factory altered to remove full-auto capability.

In short, the Swiss in return for your service will give you a military type semi-auto rifle (the equivalent of an AR-15).

For the US I like the Swiss-type model for the military and a lot of the arms laws.

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Response to discntnt_irny_srcsm (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 04:01 AM

14. Most swiss gun laws would be impossible to implement in the US

Switzerland is surely a model in some ways. Looking at swiss gun laws, I doubt they'd be popular in the US - the whole of it would be vehemently rejected by this group.

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Response to Dog Gone at Penigma (Original post)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:16 AM

2. Switzerland has open carry.


Other than that, yes - it's not a very useful country to compare to the US as many things are very different.

But there remains the fact that there are a hell of alot guns in Switzerland yet we had but one of those horrible massacres in 50 years. (Though there's lots of suicides and domestic killing done, military (most) and private guns.

I'm vehemently anti-gun but just as vehemently pro-fact. I do agree with the general intent of your post: no good comparing CH and US, Switzerland is not "liitle america".

briefness due to iphone.

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Response to Democracyinkind (Reply #2)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 08:46 PM

11. Switzerland takes better care of its people than we do.

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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Reply #11)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 08:49 PM

12. I agree. Though even the best of systems fails sometimes.

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Response to Democracyinkind (Reply #12)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 08:55 PM

13. True but, at least they TRY. we don't even try any more.

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Response to Dog Gone at Penigma (Original post)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:54 AM

4. Culture is one important difference. nt

 

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