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benEzra

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Eastern North Carolina
Home country: United States
Current location: Eastern NC
Member since: Wed Dec 1, 2004, 03:09 PM
Number of posts: 12,122

Journal Archives

Thoughts, at some length...

Using guns designed to kill people for target shooting does not change the original purpose.

Almost all hunting and target guns were originally designed for killing people, and were secondarily adapted by civilians for civilian use.

For example, the Winchester Model 70 deer rifle:



...is a very close civilian derivative of the main German infantry rifle of both World Wars, the Mauser G98/K98:



which was originally designed to kill human beings at distances of up to two kilometers, thanks to its powerful 8mm round. Captured and military-surplus Mausers became popular as hunting rifles through the 20th Century in both the USA and Europe, due to the same characteristics that made it an excellent long-range infantry rifle---power, accuracy, and reliability. Winchester eventually came out with a copy of the Mauser called the Winchester Model 58, which was later tweaked into the Model 70, that became famous as the issue U.S. Marine Corps sniper rifle in Vietnam---and the most sought-after deer rifle on the civilian market for a generation.

Likewise, this 16-shot Civil War combat rifle, the rapid-fire Henry of 1860:



after the war became the Winchester Model 1866 civilian rifle, which was later developed into the M1873 and M1894, and became the most popular hunting gun in the nation.

I personally own exactly one military rifle, a Russian infantry rifle made in 1905 that saw combat in World War I, the Finnish Revolution of 1917-1918, the Winter War of 1939-1940, and the Finnish war against the Nazis in 1944-1945. It still shoots great, and the sights adjust from 150 meters to 2 kilometers.



USAers Nugentian sense of entitlement to shoot and kill people isn't going to change, but possibly limiting the tools for it would limit how much it happens. Or, at the very least how many a person can kill within a short amount of time.

We already limit civilians to non-automatic rifles, pistols, and shotguns; all automatic weapons (including M16s and actual AK-47's) were restricted in 1934 and banned in 1986. We already limit caliber to .50" (12.7mm) or less, with larger calibers (like .729 caliber shotguns, aka "12 gauge") allowed on an exemption basis. We already restrict explosive projectiles that could kill indiscriminately. We already restrict guns easily convertible to automatic fire. And so on.

Civilians in the USA are limited to pretty much the same types of guns Canadians and many Europeans can own---manually operated rifles and shotguns like bolt-actions, levers, and pumps; one-shot-at-a-time autoloaders like the Ruger Mini-14, AR-15, Tavor SAR, Springfield M1A, or M1 Garand; autoloading pistols; and revolvers. Within that subset of civilian-legal guns, there is not much difference between the shots-on-target capability of a lever or pump vs. an autoloader.

I'll also point out that handgrip shape has absolutely nothing to do with lethality; this NYC-legal and CA-legal rifle (Ruger Mini-14) is functionally exactly the same as an AR-15, firing the exact same small-caliber ammunition at the same velocity and rate of fire from the same sized magazines.



Requiring that AR-15's be modified to use straight stocks like this would not affect lethality in the slightest.

Keep in mind that rifles are the *least* misused of all weapons in killings, and the trend is down, not up. Out of the 13,500 murders every year in the USA, all kinds of rifles together account for 250 to 270 of them, or less than 2%.

Rifle Homicides, 2005-2015
2005: 442
2006: 436
2007: 450
2008: 375
2009: 348
2010: 358
2011: 323
2012: 302
2013: 285
2014: 248
2015: 252
(Source: FBI Uniform Crime Reports 2005-2015, Table 20, Collated)

Finally, even if you magically outlawed all rifles, you would not address mass shootings one iota. The Newtown murderer took a 9mm pistol, a UK-legal semiautomatic shotgun, and a small-caliber rifle stolen from his murdered mother to the school where he murdered those kids, and had he used the pistol or the shotgun instead of the rifle---or had he used a straight-stocked hunting style rifle like a Mini-14---the outcome would have been no different.

If you want to make a real dent in killing, end drug prohibition; start fighting the culture of violent gangs, not the target shooting/hunting/self-defense culture; and start looking to repair our broken inner cities. Legislating rifle handgrip shape, or trying to confiscate half a billion magazines from 60+ million people, or endlessly harassing the licensed and vetted, is pointless, counterproductive, and politically asinine.

My guns have harmed no one, and I do my part to help ensure they never will.

And rifles *like* mine are among the least misused of all weapons, as you well know.

Any discussion that *exaggerates* will certainly be engaged by people who know they are talking about, and flaws pointed out. E.g., when someone claims that replacing a protruding handgrip with a straight stock makes a rifle less lethal, or that small-caliber rifles are the "weapons of choice of criminals", or that long guns account for a large percentage of homicides, or that they are more powerful and higher velocity than "hunting rifles", or that shooting a centerfire .22 will bruise your shoulder and give you PTSD, or that rifle homicide is increasing rather than decreasing, then yes, expect that those farcical claims will be challenged.

But there has been a lot of civil discussion on this board since 2004-2005 by people with widely varying viewpoints. That's a good thing.

And the fact remains that the top priority of the gun control lobby in 2016 is *still* bans on the least misused guns, and demonization of the least violent citizens. Until that changes, pushback is a given.

What does threatening people with felonies for having the wrong shape rifle stock

have to do with "right to kill interpretation" of the 2ndA?

Even if you don't like gun ownership (which I get), it would seem to be more productive to focus on actual misuse, and strategies that might actually do some good, rather than simple harassment of the nonviolent (via handgrip shape legislation, magazine bans, and whatnot).

There is common ground to be found on background checks, but that got tossed out the window in '94.

Unless...

I'm not concerned about someone with a gun or two at home for hunting or self-defense.

Unless that gun is not expensive enough. Or is a hunting revolver, especially a biggish one. Or is a bolt-action that looks too modern. Or holds more than seven or ten rounds of ammunition or more than five shotgun shells, or has a handgrip that sticks out, or fires bullets with the wrong color tips, or pump shotguns. And people with carry licenses, unless they are rich, famous, or politically connected, can go fuck off, or go to prison, because they are evil killers.

Those gun owners can be tossed into prison on rape-equivalent felonies because they are evil and have it coming, right?

See, smearing the quarter of Dems and third of independents who own guns like that...

is part of why it's so hard to have a civil conversation on guns. Gun control advocates don't often debate things like rifle handgrip shape legislation or carry licensure or pre-1860s capacity limits on their merits, they mostly just call us names and tell us to STFU.

The problem with that is that when gun-owning Dems/indies get shut up and kicked to the corner, it turns the discussion on guns into an echo chamber dominated by the loudest voices calling for prohibition. And within that cloister, impractical, quixotic, or downright counterproductive positions start to sound reasonable and end up dominating the party's message on the subject.

Case in point, there is a thread right now in the Guns and RKBA forum wherein a gun-control advocate is seriously advocating the banning and confiscation of all self-loaders with detachable magazines. That's 75% of civilian guns right there, without even getting into the bans on pumps and high-powered bolts and revolvers that the gun-control lobby keeps demanding. Case #2, the NY SAFE Act. Case #3, the magazine confiscation just passed in California. We're talking legislation that even Europe and Canada have rejected, but you think it's not only reasonable and achievable in the United States, you think it's relatively noncontroversial.

As to the slinging of racial stereotypes, a concealed-carry licensee was murdered a few months ago by an out-of-control police officer, and the killing made national news. And it doesn't even seem to click with the namecallers and mudslingers that the victim was one of the CHL holders and gun owners that you gleefully demonize day in and day out, because he had the wrong color skin to fit your stereotypes of what a gun owner looks like. Your leaders speak up in support of Michael Bloomberg putting tens of thousands of innocent African-Americans and other minorities in Rikers for pocketknives that aren't even illegal in NY, defended the killing of Jose Guerena and countless others, and defend making simple magazine possession a crime equivalent to rape or luring a child (NY SAFE Act), because "Weapons Are Evil And People Who Own Them Have It Coming", or something.

That is not only counterproductive to the cause of violence prevention---assuming you give a crap about *that*, as opposed to simply sticking it to people you dislike---but it's also damaging to the party at large.

How are airport parking garages different from other parking garages?

And what's the rational case against permitting a licensed, trained individual to discreetly carry while she is walking to/from the airport parking garage to pick up an arriving friend, and how is that different than her carrying while walking to/from a parking garage anywhere else?

No unchecked guns are allowed past an airport's security checkpoints, and you can already bring a gun up to the baggage check-in counter *without* a license (in a case) in order to fly with one, so allowing licensed carry when dropping off or picking up passengers doesn't really change the security situation in or around the airport.

This is another example of how gun control advocates view training and licensure with contempt, and thereby shoot themselves in the foot.

You realize even the *UK* has rejected that level of ban, yes?

And that Canada has considered and resoundingly rejected such bans? As has Norway, Germany, France, Switzerland, Finland, Italy, Spain, New Zealand, etc. etc. etc.

Semiautomatic actually doesn't matter in terms of misuse; back when criminals mostly used 6-shot revolvers and manually operated shotguns, our murder rate was roughly twice what it is now. And if all semiauto rifles and shotguns were magically replaced with Australia-legal pump-actions, it wouldn't save even a single life.

Yes, I realize that. That's why I said "75% of civilian guns" above, which would encompass

detachable-magazine pistols, in addition to Canada/Europe-legal detachable-magazine rifles and shotguns.

From your posts, your top priority does appear to be banning rifles, though, which is sort of like banning Volvos to stop car accidents..

Clinton lost by 180,000 votes here; Cooper won by 15,000 I think, so that's about a 200k delta.

Keep in mind that the delta doesn't necessarily result from split tickets; it could also result from people simply leaving the presidential portion blank, or voting a protest candidate (Johnson or Stein).

Among other things, Roy Cooper is pro-choice on guns and was NRA-endorsed in prior elections, whereas during the primaries Clinton advocated banning popular rifles and magazines that about 2 million North Carolinians own, a position that is hugely unpopular here outside of Durham/etc. I'm not sure if that's the primary reason for the split, but the margin of loss is less than 10% of that 2 million, so even a 20% undervote with 50% turnout among that group would more than account for the delta between Cooper and Clinton.

There may be other issues in play as well, e.g. Cooper being a North Carolinian vs. the NY/DC-centric tone of the campaign, but I think the proposed bans were a big one. The NY SAFE Act or California's bans would *not* play here.

An inconvenient truth...

Rifle Homicides in the United States, 2005-2015

2005: 442
2006: 436
2007: 450
2008: 375
2009: 348
2010: 358
2011: 323
2012: 302
2013: 285
2014: 248
2015: 252

(Source: FBI Uniform Crime Reports 2005-2015, Table 20, Collated)
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