Feinstein: Assault Weapons Ban Bill

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  • #26
CAC1001
In combat, I used to carry 7-9 mags, which contained 210-270 rounds. Why would any civilian ever need that? That is what I would carry with the full intention to kill someone who would fire back at me. If we limited mags to civilians to be 10 rounds only, that would only be 90 rounds. A huge difference. It's a lot easier to escape with a guy has to reload every few seconds. Most people are not pros at the quick reload.
90 rounds is still plenty to kill a lot of people with and a person could carry more then 7 to 9 magazines. But out of most of the mass shootings we've seen as of late, in only one of them would a more limited magazine size have made a difference possibly (Tucson shooter). In the Virginia Tech shooting, in the Aurora shooting, in the Adam Lanza shooting, the outcome would have been the same. That said, I am not strictly opposed to limiting magazines to ten rounds, but not convinced of it either. I think both sides can make good arguments on the magazine issue.
 
  • #27
MarneMath
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I fail to see how the outcome would've been the same. Ironically, I think it would have been worse in the Aurora shooting. (Simply because the mag he was using is well known to cause a weapon Jam, and from what I can recall, his inability to peform remedial action render that weapon ineffective.) Yes a person can literally carry more than 7-9 rounds, but every way I can think of for the person to do so, only increases the loading time for the weapon, and thus can give people a better chance to get away.

Nevertheless, let's assume you're right and the only possible shooting where it could've made a difference is the Tucson shooter. Isn't one enough? Especially, since there doesn't seem to be a real reason to have a 30 round quick release mag.

Edit:Just notice you mention the Aurora case!
 
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  • #29
encorp
They just need to put liability insurance on each gun owner. Let the markets decide which guns they'll insure. No insurance? No gun.

And if your gun slips into others hands and you're not some how killed in that theft, then you should be thrown in jail for a term depending on the crime committed with said fire arm
 
  • #30
mheslep
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I've only read Sen Feinstein's page on the proposed bill with regards to links provided in this thread, so perhaps I missed some proposed answers to what appear to me to be the obvious questions. The US had an assault weapons ban for ten years, starting in '94. So:
1. Was the '94 ban effective?
2. How would this ban improve on the '94 ban?

Do most simply take it as axiomatic that a renewed prohibition law without seizure of existing weapons will reduce homicides, or is there consideration of evidence for a testable hypothesis?

I do see some specific changes from '94 until now in Feinstein's description, but it is not clear that they are germane to the flaws in the '94 law. Recall that Harris and Klebold used a TEC-9 at the Columbine HS shootings in '99, a weapon specifically banned by the '94 law.
 
  • #31
CAC1001
Nevertheless, let's assume you're right and the only possible shooting where it could've made a difference is the Tucson shooter. Isn't one enough? Especially, since there doesn't seem to be a real reason to have a 30 round quick release mag.
This is a good point, but at the same time, then I think of the examples cited about limiting liquor purchases or limiting the types of cars available, their speeds, etc...which would surely save some lives too.

http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn....r-gun-problem/ [Broken] Thoughts?
I think he's over-simplifying the issue in a few ways. Stricter gun laws could probably prevent certain mass shootings from occurring, but gun violence itself, overall, isn't the same, where you have a lot of illegally-acquired hand guns being used in inner cities in cities with very restrictive gun laws. The other thing is that back when gun laws were less restrictive, we did not have these mass shootings as we see today.

He mentions China and Japan. Well Japan has a very homogenous population that is very well-behaved, we saw that during the aftermath of their earthquake, where things like rioting and looting didn't break out. Also, Japan has never had a large ownership of guns in the way the United States has. So with a well-behaved population and a complete lack of guns in the country, it isn't surprising that they have very little gun violence. Regarding China, well again, China has never introduced guns in large amounts to the general population and has been a repressive dictatorship for many years now. The punishment for getting caught with a gun there I'd imagine is pretty severe. The government censors the media and the Internet, so it surely makes sure the population is also disarmed.
 
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  • #32
AlephZero
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About 3X as many people died in car accidents in 2011 as died from gun violence.
I don't know how you define "violence", but the total number of people whose cause of death was firearms related is roughly equal to the number killed in traffic accidents. Maybe you should forget about the "violent minority" and focus on other 2/3 of the problem. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/injury.htm

So should we ban sports cars and put limits on the rate at which a car can accelerate from 0-60 and on the top speed cars can be capable of going to?|
Actually, we already have a better idea - controlling the public use of ALL cars by speed limits and traffic regulations, not to mention compulsory driver training.

If somebody wants to drive off-road at 150 or 200 mph, that's their own affair. If they want to do the same along Main Street, that's something different.

Let's try an analogy to the "guns protect people against gun crime" argument: maybe everybody should have high performance cars, so if they see somebody driving dangerously they can chase them and force them off the road to defuse the situation ..... ?????????????????
 
  • #33
Pythagorean
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Not sure what you mean when you say, "they would be included in the ban for recognizably?" I do not see how a folding or collapsible stock makes any difference regarding the gun's ability to shoot, or pistol grip
I'm fairly sure he meant "Recognizability". It's the same reason you're not supposed to remove the orange tip from a (fake) pop gun. If you get shot by a cop for pointing a fake gun at him without an orange tip, it's your fault, not the cops fault.

If you're a bunch of kids riding around pointing a fake gun without the orange tip at people, you're being reckless. It doesn't matter about the gun's functionality, it matters about the social implications of having something that looks like a gun.

Now we apply this logic to assault weapons. If you look like an illegally-armed militia group, it gives you proximity social power.
 
  • #34
MarneMath
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Stricter gun laws could probably prevent certain mass shootings from occurring, but gun violence itself, overall, isn't the same, where you have a lot of illegally-acquired hand guns being used in inner cities in cities with very restrictive gun laws
If it can prevent mass shootings, then why not do it. It seems like the crux of your argument is "it doesn't solve everything so why bother?" Sure, illegal gun ownership and gang violence will probably kill more people yearly than any mass shootings, but that doesn't mean you don't do anything to make it harder for mass shootings to happen.

A gun's real only purpose is to kill someone with relatively little skill. I understand there exist SOME shooters (include myself) who enjoy going to ranges and testing your skill, but in the end of the day, the gun was designed to kill something. With that in mind, I have no idea why it isn't highly regulated. If we are going to trust people with guns, we need to make sure that they know how to use them, properly store them and at the same time limit the ability for one person to shoot 30 5.56 mm rounds.
 
  • #35
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In regards to magazine capacity,

Cho killed the highest number of people in the US with two handguns, one which used 10rd magazines the other 15rd.

There is little reason to think lanza wouldn't have been equally capable.

When shooting unarmored people at close range, children even moreso handguns would be just as fatal.

Suppose this passes, when the next mass shooting happens, what will be the next set of regulations pushed? Magazine limits to 5rds? No detachable magazines?

Outside of a mass confiscation of firearms and a ban on semiautomatics, you're not going to be stopping mass shootings before they start.

I feel the only thing which is worth doing as a response to mass shootings is allowing the general population to respond in a proactive fashion.

While what happened in Newton is horrible, things like it are incredibly infrequent events considering the US population of over 300 million. I feel feinstein is more interested in advancing a social agenda then makeing anyone significantly safer. Her proposed legislation results in a significant loss of freedom and personal power for little if any gain.
 
  • #36
MarneMath
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Of course, the handgun issue is an entirely different issue altogether, and quite frankly more dangerous. You can carry more mags, in less space that can do quite a bit of damage quickly and also hide the weapon better. I've always argued that targeting assault weapons is really just a 'feel good' tactic. The real problem in the US is the massive amount of killing done by handguns.

However, that isn't the point. The point is there is literally no point for a civilian to have a 30 round mag nor is there a point for a guy like Cho to have a hollow point round. The only goal for a hollow-point is to increase the damage to a target. This round is ban for military use, yet we sell it? Come on! (I can understand why it would be sold for hunting rifles, but I'm willing to wager no one is going to hunt for a deer with a p22.)

While massing shooting like Newton are 'rare', they are more frequent here than our peers, and gun violence as a whole is larger in the states also. Clearly there exist a problem, ignoring it and saying 'welp there's nothing that can be done' seems way too defeatist for my taste.
 
  • #37
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Of course, the handgun issue is an entirely different issue altogether, and quite frankly more dangerous. You can carry more mags, in less space that can do quite a bit of damage quickly and also hide the weapon better. I've always argued that targeting assault weapons is really just a 'feel good' tactic. The real problem in the US is the massive amount of killing done by handguns.

However, that isn't the point. The point is there is literally no point for a civilian to have a 30 round mag nor is there a point for a guy like Cho to have a hollow point round. The only goal for a hollow-point is to increase the damage to a target. This round is ban for military use, yet we sell it? Come on! (I can understand why it would be sold for hunting rifles, but I'm willing to wager no one is going to hunt for a deer with a p22.)

While massing shooting like Newton are 'rare', they are more frequent here than our peers, and gun violence as a whole is larger in the states also. Clearly there exist a problem, ignoring it and saying 'welp there's nothing that can be done' seems way too defeatist for my taste.
The reason to own a 30rd magazine is to be able to shoot more bullets. 10rd magazines aren't any more legitimate then 30rd in their use and both are pretty arbitrary numbers. It's true that 30rd are more effective but effectiveness doesn't imply something is bad to own. The vast majority of people who own 30rd magazines don't wrongly shoot people with them(30rd is standard on ar-15s in most states).

Hollowpoints are standard defensive rounds. It's true they are designed to cause as much damage as possible to an unarmored target, I don't see a problem with this.

I don't consider my position defeatist, I consider the losses associated with access to and ownership of firearms including ar-15s with standard capacity magazines(30rd) acceptable. I support looking at other ways to reduce deaths but a ban on ownership is not one of them.
 
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  • #38
BobG
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Sure, people can try to find black market sources for guns and ammo, but that is difficult, expensive and risky.

Availability matters.
The expense is transitioning a legally purchased gun into the black market. The guns have to be stolen or purchased using some sort of forged paperwork or other means. Difficult, but cheaper and less risky than smuggling guns into the country.

Increasing the difficulty of obtaining weapons legally also increases the difficulty (and expense) of obtaining black market weapons.
 
  • #39
nsaspook
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However, that isn't the point. The point is there is literally no point for a civilian to have a 30 round mag nor is there a point for a guy like Cho to have a hollow point round. The only goal for a hollow-point is to increase the damage to a target. This round is ban for military use, yet we sell it? Come on! (I can understand why it would be sold for hunting rifles, but I'm willing to wager no one is going to hunt for a deer with a p22.)
We all know banning 30 round mags will be as effective as banning 40s of beer in stopping crime in the hood.

Almost nobody uses FMJ rounds in a handgun for personal protection or law enforcement except the military. I reload .45 .223 308 ammo and use FMJ rounds only for target practice.

http://forums.officer.com/t82674/
 
  • #40
nsaspook
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The expense is transitioning a legally purchased gun into the black market. The guns have to be stolen or purchased using some sort of forged paperwork or other means. Difficult, but cheaper and less risky than smuggling guns into the country.

Increasing the difficulty of obtaining weapons legally also increases the difficulty (and expense) of obtaining black market weapons.
I spent some time in the southern Philippines long ago. It was amazing to me to watch modern weapons being made in such primitive conditions.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=lLApVGIU8eQ

With 3D printing and low cost CNC machines the underground gun manufacturing market will bloom if it becomes a crime profit center due to the increased value and demand for banned guns. This bill makes current semi-auto weapons on the banned list the same NFA class as real machines guns so the incentive might be to produce full-auto weapons if the penalties for using one are the same. Do you think it's a sane idea to make every AR-15 clone a NFA weapon?

http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/national-firearms-act-firearms.html#nfa-firearms
 
  • #41
CAC1001
I don't know how you define "violence", but the total number of people whose cause of death was firearms related is roughly equal to the number killed in traffic accidents. Maybe you should forget about the "violent minority" and focus on other 2/3 of the problem. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/injury.htm
I should have been clearer in my writing, but by "gun violence deaths," I was thinking of gun homicides: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/homicide.htm

Actually, we already have a better idea - controlling the public use of ALL cars by speed limits and traffic regulations, not to mention compulsory driver training.
A lot of traffic accidents happen because of people who do not obey those laws is the problem however.

Let's try an analogy to the "guns protect people against gun crime" argument: maybe everybody should have high performance cars, so if they see somebody driving dangerously they can chase them and force them off the road to defuse the situation ..... ?????????????????
I don't think that analogy works.
 
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  • #42
CAC1001
I'm fairly sure he meant "Recognizability". It's the same reason you're not supposed to remove the orange tip from a (fake) pop gun. If you get shot by a cop for pointing a fake gun at him without an orange tip, it's your fault, not the cops fault.

If you're a bunch of kids riding around pointing a fake gun without the orange tip at people, you're being reckless. It doesn't matter about the gun's functionality, it matters about the social implications of having something that looks like a gun.

Now we apply this logic to assault weapons. If you look like an illegally-armed militia group, it gives you proximity social power.
I don't buy the argument on recognizability. A gun is a gun. It isn't going to be more recognizable due to something like a bayonet lug or pistol grip. As for the stock, they make fixed stocks that look identical to collapsing stocks.

But also, it's illegal to just go out walking around with rifles. It's not like you can just go out for a jog and carry a rifle with you.
 
  • #43
CAC1001
If it can prevent mass shootings, then why not do it. It seems like the crux of your argument is "it doesn't solve everything so why bother?" Sure, illegal gun ownership and gang violence will probably kill more people yearly than any mass shootings, but that doesn't mean you don't do anything to make it harder for mass shootings to happen.
I think it depends on how much additional hassle does it put onto the ordinary citizen. There is always "more" that we could do to theoretically make mass shootings even rarer by making it more and more difficult ot legally purchase a gun.

A gun's real only purpose is to kill someone with relatively little skill. I understand there exist SOME shooters (include myself) who enjoy going to ranges and testing your skill, but in the end of the day, the gun was designed to kill something. With that in mind, I have no idea why it isn't highly regulated. If we are going to trust people with guns, we need to make sure that they know how to use them, properly store them and at the same time limit the ability for one person to shoot 30 5.56 mm rounds.
If the gun makes killing very easy, then why do people need special training in how to use them? Also, how do we define "properly store?" (that gets arbitrary).

However, that isn't the point. The point is there is literally no point for a civilian to have a 30 round mag nor is there a point for a guy like Cho to have a hollow point round. The only goal for a hollow-point is to increase the damage to a target. This round is ban for military use, yet we sell it? Come on! (I can understand why it would be sold for hunting rifles, but I'm willing to wager no one is going to hunt for a deer with a p22.)
My understanding of hollow-point is that it penetrates less, which makes it ideal for civilians and law-enforcement. One thing to also keep in mind with the Second Amendment is that it isn't solely about whether one needs something. Now I'm not saying that in a way as to not allow any kinds of regulations, but I mean, when people say, "No one needs this or that," arms-wise, people need to remember when it comes to regulating it that arms ownership is a fundamental right. Also, who decides what is the "appropriate" number of rounds for a magazine to hold?
 
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  • #44
CAC1001
Suppose this passes, when the next mass shooting happens, what will be the next set of regulations pushed? Magazine limits to 5rds? No detachable magazines?
In New York state, they are talking about now reducing magazine size from ten rounds to seven rounds; I don't see how that will make a difference at all.
 
  • #45
russ_watters
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The reason to own a 30rd magazine is to be able to shoot more bullets. 10rd magazines aren't any more legitimate then 30rd in their use and both are pretty arbitrary numbers.
Yes, they are arbitrary, but that is not a good reason for why there should be no limit at all, if a limit saves lives.
 
  • #46
russ_watters
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The expense is transitioning a legally purchased gun into the black market. The guns have to be stolen or purchased using some sort of forged paperwork or other means. Difficult, but cheaper and less risky than smuggling guns into the country.

Increasing the difficulty of obtaining weapons legally also increases the difficulty (and expense) of obtaining black market weapons.
Yes and "risky" in that doing something illegal can get you arrested before you even get a chance to do what you wanted to do with that gun.
 
  • #47
russ_watters
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I don't buy the argument on recognizability. A gun is a gun. It isn't going to be more recognizable due to something like a bayonet lug or pistol grip. As for the stock, they make fixed stocks that look identical to collapsing stocks.
My point was that assault weapons need to be differentiated from hunting rifles, so features that differentiate them are specified in the laws, whether those features are functional or cosmetic.
 
  • #48
CAC1001
My point was that assault weapons need to be differentiated from hunting rifles, so features that differentiate them are specified in the laws, whether those features are functional or cosmetic.
There is no difference though, unless one is talking automatic fire weapons which are already banned (minus the bump fire mechanisms which I am fine with limitations on). As said before, there is no such thing as an "assault weapon" even. That's a political term that was invented by gun control people to give them an "in" with regards to being able to restrict firearms ownership. As for hunting rifles versus military rifles, the practice of adopting military rifles for hunting purposes goes back to the Revolution.

What people forget is that they think you need some kind of special gun to be able to kill people. But people, biologically, are animals. If the gun can kill a human, it can be used to kill an animal and vice-versa. The AR-15 and the AR-10 (it's bigger brother) both make fine hunting rifles. The military uses a variant of a very popular hunting rifle for use as a sniper rifle as well, the Remington 700.
 
  • #49
Pythagorean
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I don't buy the argument on recognizability. A gun is a gun. It isn't going to be more recognizable due to something like a bayonet lug or pistol grip. As for the stock, they make fixed stocks that look identical to collapsing stocks.

But also, it's illegal to just go out walking around with rifles. It's not like you can just go out for a jog and carry a rifle with you.
What? I don't know where you live but where I live people carry all the time. It's not illegal and its socially acceptable. The intent is always hunting or bear protection.
 
  • #50
russ_watters
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There is no difference though...
You mean functionally? That isn't really true. Here's the list of features from the original ban. Looks to me like most are regarding functionality:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Assault_Weapons_Ban
As said before, there is no such thing as an "assault weapon" even. That's a political term that was invented by gun control people to give them an "in" with regards to being able to restrict firearms ownership. As for hunting rifles versus military rifles, the practice of adopting military rifles for hunting purposes goes back to the Revolution.
That's nonsense and your historical example shows why: hunting rifles used to be the same as military weapons, but they aren't anymore. The military uses different weapons today because the ones they use are better suited for killing people (lots of people) than hunting rifles.

And why quibble with a name? It is just a name and it doesn't change the fact that the weapons are military-type weapons. We could just as easily call them "military-type weapons." Would that change your stance?
What people forget is that they think you need some kind of special gun to be able to kill people.
No, we most certainly have not forgotten that. In a way, you are looking at this backwards: you don't need a 30 round magazine, folding stock and silencer threads to hunt deer. The descriptions of features exist as much to protect hunting rifles than to identify assault rifles. Otherwise, they could simply ban all semi-automatic rifles.
 

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