Reprint of an opinion ar15, self defense

Why Americans Need the AR-15 “Assault Rifle”

Robert Farago
3 years ago 186 commen

The following is a comment from TTAG reader Josef Kozlov:

Just yesterday I was reading an article here on TTAG from several months ago, “The Truth About Assault Rifles and Assault Weapons Bans.” Most of the comments were from within a few days that the article was posted, but there was one recent comment from just a couple of days ago. It was posted by an anti-gunner, with little understanding of firearms, and this commenter was basically saying that “assault weapons” serve no other purpose than killing innocent children. Here is what I wrote back, explaining my views on “assault weapons” and gun rights . . .

Your argument is one that focuses on shock value and emotion, trying to put these graphic images in our heads. It is not surprising though, considering the gun control argument is based on emotion and misinformation.

In terms of self-defense, AR-15s and other so-called “assault weapons” were used many times by Korean business owners during the L.A. Riots in 1991. They provided the firepower needed to fend off the mobs of people attempting to loot their stores. These civilian “assault weapons” are useful in situations where mobs of people may come after my family or myself.

Social breakdown is possible anywhere. Just look at places ravaged by Hurricane Sandy or Katrina. The intensity of the devastation was unexpected. Businesses and homes looted in New York City, and because Bloomberg has banned the carrying of a gun in public, the people are all but defenseless.

For home defense, let me replace your hypothetical situation with my own. I would have my house and other security measures set up in a way that I was in complete control of the situation. In the event that a criminal would break into my house, I would use an AR-15 and frangible bullets (bullets designed to break apart upon impact) to reduce over-penetration.

I would also use the modular capacity of the AR design to add lasers and a flashlight to decrease the chance of a missed shot. I would have my children’s’ rooms placed in such a way that they would be out of my line of fire. Hell, I may even bulletproof my walls.

The .223 cartridge, while it is more powerful than a handgun, may take more than one shot to take down a determined, armed thug, and if I’ve got four or five armed thugs attempting to rob my house or rape my hypothetical daughter, I want to have the most ammunition possible and the best hand to neutralize the threat and protect the most important aspects of my life. An AR-15 would provide the defense I need. Yes, need.

You say AR-15s are not useful for self-defense? Then why do you see all the police carrying them on news footage at Sandy Hook? In Sandy Hook, and all of the cases like it, the police are carrying these “assault weapons,” even though they are defensive situations. I support proper, highly encouraged training with firearms for all law-abiding citizens.

Normal citizens and the police all face the same threats, albeit police are more inclined to put themselves right in that line of fire through the conditions of law enforcement. Nevertheless, police carry “assault weapons,” because coming against an unknown threat requires the best defense possible. I would like to have the best defense against unknown threats as well. My family’s lives and my own life are worth that much.

While burglaries and home invasions are somewhat rare in the big picture, so are school shootings. But I am more likely to be faced with a semi-rare burglary or home invasion personally, than an extremely rare school shooting or workplace/theater/whatever-else shooting.

And if I were to enter one of those situations, I should have the right to defend myself no matter where I am, no more of than “gun free (killing) zone” crap, that only disarms law-abiding citizens and creates a target for criminals. I am willing to take the responsibility of accidents that affect my family, because I can control that. I cannot, however, control a criminal’s actions.

Although, I’ve explained my position on the utility of so-called “assault weapons” in the hands of the average person, I really do not need to, because the burden of proof is on you. In America, we have, let’s call it a default setting of liberty. Freedoms are limited only if there is evidence that limiting that freedom would effectively provide a better quality of life for Americans without infringing on our Constitutional Rights.

If our government Overwhelmingly believes that the Constitution does not fit the current standards of our nation, they can amend it. Therefore, it is your responsibility to provide evidence that a ban on “assault weapons” weapons would improve mine, as well as most other Americans lives without infringing upon our rights.

So let’s stop and think, would an “assault weapons” ban have stopped this attack? No, considering there is already an “assault weapons” ban in place in Connecticut, and it did not stop this attack. The AR-15 used by the shooter was legal under the Connecticut law. But that’s just one state, so would a national ban have stopped this attack? Doubt it, considering we had one in place for 10 years, during which time the Columbine Massacre (the model after which most other mass shootings are based) and the North Hollywood Shootout occurred.

Maybe the ban should cover more guns? Now would this help? Let’s ban all AR-15s, AK clones, semi-automatic handguns, anything that resembles a military firearm and fits your killing of “humans per minute rule.” According to all proposed legislation, the “assault weapons” ban will not require citizens to turn in their guns, so despite the ban all these guns are still out there, but no more can be produced.

A psycho could still get a hold of one and kill innocent people. And considering many, if not most, handguns out there are semi-automatic and hold more than 10 rounds, this could possibly be a violation of 2nd Amendment rights, which the Supreme Court has agreed allows us, as law-abiding citizens, the individual exercise of self-defense through bearing arms, which make an outright ban on handguns unconstitutional.

Disregarding any possible violation of 2nd Amendment rights, let’s just take all guns listed in the ban away from the law-abiding citizens. Force them to turn in the guns or face felony charges. Here we run into an infringement on our 4th Amendment rights to protect us against “illegal search and seizure,” and possibly “ex-post facto” laws well. The government now has the right to take away private property, because it has deemed it a hazard. All this to prevent an extremely rare event in the broad scheme of things without evidence to back-up whether or not it will prevent it.

Criminals still have access to “assault weapons” through the black market or even stealing from military installations(which has been done) and citizens’ 2nd Amendment rights are eroded. Psychos can still use any other weapons they can think of, whether it be a car used to mow down a crowd of people, or a plane used to crash into a building, a homemade bomb used to blow up a building or crowd of people, a homemade flamethrower or Molotov cocktail to burn innocent people in a crowded theatre or elementary school classroom alive.

Not to mention the number of handguns with magazine capacities less than 10-rounds, revolvers, lever-action rifles, and pump-action shotguns still available to the public and potentially the psychos. These guns are still capable of killing large numbers of people given the right circumstances, such as a gun-free zone in an area where police presence is minimal.

“Assault weapon” bans are ineffective and unconstitutional. They only limit the rights of law-abiding citizens. Criminals and crazies are always around, and they will always kill.

So what is a good plan, how do we limit this violence? Start with increased security in public schools, and fostering the moral development of children as they are raised, both in school and at home, rather than a do-whatever-you-want type attitude. Increase the funding of mental health institutions.

Revive institutionalization that was removed during the 60’s. Make an effort to include mentally unstable and psychotic people in the background checks. Encourage children to develop social relationships rather than numb their brains with violent entertainment. Abolish all the “gun-free zones” that create shooting galleries for criminals.

This issue is complex and banning certain kinds firearms will not solve it, but only serve to increase the problem. A ban is only a quick fix that fails to address the underlying societal problems, and is destined to fail.

Some responses to the above post

Good point…I will patiently wait then!!
Jon says:
December 21, 2012 at 22:29
Even Colt has to care about the consumer market. I believe they recently lost the U.S. military M4 contract.
Ralph says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:03
They lost the contract to Remmy, but the decision was reversed. Now that Remmy is exiting the field, it once again belongs to Colt.
Lance says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:30
They lost to Remington to make new Army M-4s.
jim smith says:
December 22, 2012 at 13:41
The NRA should take a page out of Obama’s community organizing and Chicago thug playbook by announcing it will sponsor a gun owners rally in Washington DC when Biden releases his AWB recommendations. I don’t know how many people would show up but given the stakes, I’m guessing a lot and it might be enough to give the House republicans and red state democrats sufficient cover and incentive to kill any radical proposals. Thanks to government regulations, the gun community has a lot of existing infrastructure, (gun stores, gun clubs, state NRA reps, gun ranges, training classes, ex military and police, etc) and they could be called upon to coordinate the logistics at a local level. This administration doesn’t like gun owners and I’m guessing they would like organized gun owners even less and the threat of a rally might be enough to neuter the whole AWB proposal by forever delaying its release.
William says:
December 22, 2012 at 16:16
I could NOT possibly disagree more. The NRA has been a fifth-column focal point within the Second-A community for two decades now.

It’s called “controlled opposition”, and it’s an ancient technique. You really SHOULD research it.
Jim Smith says:
December 23, 2012 at 15:59
Nevertheless, as far as I know, they (the NRA) have more members than the other pro-gun organizations and if they took the lead there’s nothing to prevent the other organizations from jumping on the bandwagon. Biden co-authored the last AWB with Feinstein so there is little doubt what will come out of his committee. The democrats control the Senate and gained 9 seats in the house. 17 Republican votes in the house will be enough to enact the AWB assuming a party line vote. Considering the emotion involved where facts don’t matter, if we stay quiet about this and don’t give the republicans some cover, I’m afraid there will be a permanent ban where you can keep your firearm but can’t buy a new one and yours will become worthless because you can’t transfer it to anyone else other than the government. The scary part of this is that in order to ensure the ban is carried out, passage of the bill will probably justify regulations being written to require registration of all “prohibited” firearms and magazines.
Scott Henrichs says:
December 22, 2012 at 17:03
The NRA has finally read and is using the same playbook the liberals have been using for years. The anti-gunners are arguing about using police officers in schools to protect our children. Read that again and let it sink in on exactly how stupid they sound to every concerned parent out there. Any argument against that makes you sound like a raving lunatic and the liberal media fell for it. The NRA is hammering them on one point and making their argument look stupid. Now, in a few weeks, when an AWB is trotted out, the liberal left has already lost creditability in the eyes of the majority. I’m really hoping that the NRA points out that a “patrol carbine with a standard size magazine in a police patrol car” somehow becomes an “assault weapon with a high capacity assault clip” when used to defend our home. This argument would again point out the failed logic of the liberal media.
William says:
December 23, 2012 at 12:41
FORGET the word “liberal”; it’s a mind control trick. Instead, turn your attention towards that which is evil and regressive.

We don’t HAVE any friends. Stop looking for them, for you will inevitably be betrayed. You will discover who your best friends are, pretty soon.
Randy Drescher says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:30
This is a court case waiting to happen & I would hate to tell the judge that the cops carry “good AR’s” while the regular citizen has a “bad AR”. Talk about a tough stance to defend, rife with hysteria & hyperbole. We’ll, like they said, this was their best shot, lol, Randy
uncommon_sense says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:32
Why would I need an AR-15? How about if I lived in an area where the local Sheriff announced “We are outgunned, we are out manned and we don’t have the resources here locally to fight this.”?

This actually happened about two years ago in Pinal County, Arizona. Sheriff Paul Babeu said those words at a press conference:

William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:05
Fight WHAT?
Matt in FL says:
December 28, 2012 at 21:31
“Drug cartels control this area, and this is unacceptable. Local law enforcement cannot handle and stop this on our own.”
William says:
December 28, 2012 at 22:05
Oh. Thanks for the explanation!
Jeh says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:38
Nice post man, very well done
Too bad the person that caused this responce will just smash his monitor pretend his illogical outrage is right and go back to watching Piers Morgans and the rest of the propaganda on TV
jsallison says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:45
And after these vermin clamp down on ‘eeeevilllll assaulllllllt rifles’ you can bet your bippy they’ll be after those reprehensible ‘high powered sniper rifles’, aka grandad’s 30-06 deer rifle. My assault 4 Iron and auto-machete are well hidden.
jsallison says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:46
I’d mention my assault 1 iron, but not even God can hit it…
Lance says:
December 21, 2012 at 20:58
Very good Robert.

I wish you could have also been at the NRA conference. But I know they will bring logic to this too. Good Job.
Steve says:
December 21, 2012 at 21:23
Sorry. Being right and wordy won’t work.

When asked the same question, I simply respond:

People like you that are tin pot tyrants, who, brains failing in extreme circumstances, choose to attack me, strip me of my rights and my pastimes, because it make you feel self important.

And anyone who isn’t a believer in the NRA’s School Shield program obviously approves of the mass murder of children. Disgusting savages that you are and all.

Dianne, you magnificent bastardess, I READ YOUR BOOK!
JAS says:
December 21, 2012 at 22:18
Once you have a semi-automatic firearm that feeds through a magazine, all magazine capacity laws are unenforceable. Why you ask? Because the firearm has a big hole on the bottom of it somewhere, waiting to be filled. A magazine is just a box with a spring. How hard is it to make the box longer so it can hold more rounds? Not very…

The whole magazine ban thing would only apply to lawful persons that would not extend their magazines.
Mark N. says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:04
The way the ban is written in California, your mag can be as long as you like as long as it is disabled from accepting more than ten rounds.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:07
In the real world, it’s very, very hard to make such a contraption work. We’ve all had 20-round mags that misfed, and had to be discarded.
Jack says:
December 21, 2012 at 22:32
How many 6 year olds have to die so that you can own guns that have no purpose other than to kill other humans. Before you write a comment imagine saying it to the parent of a 6 year old who was just killed by a maniac with a gun that you supported him owning. Adam Lanza mother owned guns and all they got here was a death at the hands of her son and responsibility for the murder of 20 children. Shame on you
John Doe says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:05
Shame? You have the gall to blame those whose life circumstances you can not even comprehend nor do your kind make an attempt to understand. You’re barking up the wrong tree pal. You and your kind acting all high and mighty with your false sense of self-righteousness, playing the blame game, plastering the papers and screens 24/7 with your shameless demagogy before the victim’s families have had a chance to grieve in peace. You and your ilk sicken me.
Ralph says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:06
What flavor was the Kool-Aid that you drank?

Do yourself a favor and don’t even try to think. It will only hurt your head.
Gregolas says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:08
I would tell them that it’s a good thing an armed, trained person wasn’t there when Lanza blew through the door, otherwise somebody might’ve gotten hurt!
Ted says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:08

Are you proposing that we amend the constitution to be rid of the second amendment?

I get it – you don’t like guns. Fine. Get your like-minded folks together and amend the constitution. That’s the correct way to advance your political views on this topic.

Any other way is subverting the constitution. That’s a massive slippery slope. What other parts of the constitution will fall after that? Women’s right to vote? Freedom of speech? Protection from improper search and seizure?

Today it’s someone else’s rights getting trampled, tomorrow it could be yours.
Steve Ramsey says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:15
No, shame on YOU for putting children at risk with your GUN FREE ZONES, and wantonly assisting EVIL by disarming good law abiding Americans who, if allowed by anti-gun paranoids like YOU, would gladly get in a spree killers way and stop them before you could crap your pants, a specialty of YOURS.

You ninnies need to adjust your thinking to adult level, and gain an understanding of the way EVIL works. It seeks the kind of WEAKNESS you display with every sentence, every slogan. Your craven desire to assist evil, thus makes YOU culpable, and equally EVIL.

YOUR ignorance, denial, and haughty attitude is getting INNOCENT people MURDERED. YOUR hands are drenched in blood.
Lance says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:31
Word up its scummy people who do not debate but attack and name call who make this nation look bad and that’s the anti gunners out there. The facts go against them SO they name call they are so illogical. The nation is dying because of idiot liberals.
guzzimike says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:41
Last Friday, when I heard it was school full of kids one of the first things on my mind was thinking of my 6 year old nephew. If that had happened to him I would be angry at the person who did it, the situation, the school, and anything else I could point a finger at up to and including questioning how the school & school system could “let” it happen. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I find it offensive for you suggest the folk here on this list and firearms owners in general are somehow less upset than you are. Shame on you I say!

Now, at the risk of sounding cold & clinical I think it’s worth taking a look @ the top 10 CDC results for childhood causes of death. For ages 5-9 & 10-14, homicide by firearm is #4, with death by motor vehicle accident #1:

For ages 5-9 & 10-14, homicide by any means is #4, with death by unintentional injury still #1:

Depending on the age group I cited the #1 cause in both charts is roughly 4-7 times GREATER than firearm and/or homicide deaths. The #2 overall killer in both age groups is cancer in some form.

What are we as a nation doing to combat those other causes? What if the resources it would take to do a confiscation/compensation of all semi-auto long guns were applied to research/treatment of cancer instead? Subsidizing research on increasing vehicle safety even more? The list can go on and on. Folks are getting in a twist saying “assault rifles” should be completely eliminated & I don’t think even a single death by firearm is acceptable regardless of age but you have to look at the other causes as well to get a bigger picture of what’s killing our kids to get some sense of perspective.
Logan P says:
December 22, 2012 at 01:25
Actually, most of my guns are purposed for killing steel plates, clay pigeons, and paper sheets.

Your argument is invalid.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:08
That’s FAKE blood coming out of your heart, pal!!!
peter says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:02
Waiting periods.

In this case, he already owned a gun, but if the Batman shooter had been required to go through an arbitrarily large (though remaining acceptably short) waiting peroid, he wouldn’t have been able to get the gun in time.

Even if he did get it in time, or picked a different date for the attack, can you imagine staying angry enough to kill everyone for more than a week or two?
Mark N. says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:11
Assuming you are referring to Aurora, Co., he spent several months collecting his arms and ammo. These attacks are characterized by careful planning, and that includes Columbine. These are not crimes of passion, which are all that waiting periods can theoretically avoid. But in practice they are useless. A man mad enough to kill his wife (or ex-wife) will waint–that kind of anger does not go away. And if he or she already owns a firearm, what is the point in waiting to obtain firearm number 2, 3, 4 …? There is no point; the law is completely ineffective to prevent incidents where the perpetrator is already armed.
All that aside, the Sandy Hook killer wouldn’t wait–he decided not to purchase a firearm because of Conneticut’s waiting period and background check requirements. Instead he murdered his mother and stole her guns. No law can prevent a determined perpetrator willing to commit murder from breaking any or all of them; and this is the primary failure of all gun control laws.
Ralph says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:13
I can’t imagine being that angry, and you can’t imagine being that angry, but a psychotic a$$hole can stay angry for a long, long time.

Why should anyone have to wait if they already have a permit, who has already been vetted thoroughly, and who has to pass yet another background check at the time of purchase. They already own guns, or they wouldn’t need a permit. Right? Think, for god’s sake.

Do you really think that someone with ten guns in their safe would say “I’d like to kill a whole bunch of people, but I really need eleven guns.”

Use your head. Stop being a parrot.
Matt in FL says:
December 22, 2012 at 10:39
“..if the Batman shooter had been required to go through an arbitrarily large (though remaining acceptably short) waiting peroid, he wouldn’t have been able to get the gun in time.”

Someone else made a similar comment about a week ago, except they were referring to “one gun a month” rules. My answer to them applies equally here, so I’ll simply quote myself (because yes, I am cool enough to quote myself):

“I suppose you could make a case for Aurora, as his first two (of four) gun purchases were six days apart, with the third ten days later, and the fourth 29 days after that. However, he started buying ammunition for guns he didn’t even own yet some four months prior to the shooting, so with that level of prior planning, I have to assume that if there was a OGAM law in Colorado, he could have easily factored that into his plans.”

Replace “OGAM” with “arbitrarily large (though remaining acceptably short) waiting period” and you see where your mistake is.
jim smith says:
December 22, 2012 at 13:49
Human beings adapt to situations and constraints – it’s called tactics. The school shooter probably chose the long gun (AR15) because it was available and met his needs. Ban all the guns and a determined individual could have used something else and there are a lot of other options thanks to the Internet. If you think this was a horrific crime, imagine the carnage and suffering if he had used a homemade flamethrower and accomplished the task in half the time. What would you ban then? Gasoline?
Gregolas says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:11
Mr. Koslov,
Thank you for the outstanding thoughts!
DerryM says:
December 21, 2012 at 23:47
Good well thought-out and stated article, Mr. Koslov. May not change any anti’s minds, but gives those of us who “get it” some good talking points to express to the uncommitted but still rational people we meet. Thanks!
Barstow Cowboy says:
December 22, 2012 at 00:00
I don’t think you need to justify an ar15 or any other weapon; you want it, you don’t need to justify it to anyone, and you’re wasting your energy and effort responding to people who say otherwise, HOWEVER, I can see that guy’s point. I mean honestly, do you really need an ar15 to defend against multiple hypothetical invaders? I don’t think so, and I happen to have first hand knowledge on stuff like this. Case in point: today I saw a kid, yes, A NINE YEAR OLD BOY defend himself, his home and his entire family from a marauding band of evildoers using nothing but a Red Ryder BB gun. Granted, it was the Range model (compass, thing that tells time), but he didn’t need a pistol grip or a shoulder thingy that goes up to dispatch those baddies, so I think we could all get by without an ar15.
guzzimike says:
December 22, 2012 at 00:25
Would the kid by any chance be named Ralphie & his dad has lamp in the shape of a womans leg?
Barstow Cowboy says:
December 22, 2012 at 00:35
You know this kid? My understanding is that the lamp is actually a major award, and it’s probably also from France.
guzzimike says:
December 22, 2012 at 09:47
I looked like that kid way back when. We didn’t have the cool leg lamp from France though.
Josef Kozlov says:
December 22, 2012 at 00:31
Maybe so, but if I have a choice between an AR-15 or a BB gun, I’ll stick with the AR-15, and defend my right to that choice. I suppose if you feel comfortable defending yourself with a BB gun, you are free to do that. Just pray that any gang of thugs that comes upon you has a low threshold of pain or can’t tell the difference between a real gun and a BB gun. When it comes to my family’s safety, I’m not taking any chances.
Barstow Cowboy says:
December 22, 2012 at 00:37
I’m not taking any chances either. That’s why I’ve got my buddy Ralphie staying over for a while. He’s going to teach me his tactical ways.
Josef Kozlov says:
December 22, 2012 at 01:07
If that’s the case, then you will be just fine.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:12
Why do you need that BB gun, when you have a perfectly good assault pea shooter? Shame on you, Mister Kozlov!
Ray French says:
December 22, 2012 at 02:31
Mr. Kozlov,

Never seen “A Christmas Story”, have you?
Josef Kozlov says:
December 22, 2012 at 03:47
Yes, but it must have been seven or eight years ago, so it took a while for me to catch on.
pat says:
December 22, 2012 at 05:54
The semiautomatic rifle with removable magazine is the minimum standard regarding asymmetrical gorilla warfare against a future corrupt ‘Big Gov’. The idea is sniping and suppressing. This is why there is a second amendment. Not hunting like the stupid libtards keep saying.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:13
Gorillas with assault weapons!!! TAKE THAT, POACHERS!!!!
Lolinski says:
December 22, 2012 at 09:00
I find it funny that you build houses out of wood and drywall(glorified paper) and
then complain about overpenetration. Here in Bosnia we make houses out of concrete.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:14
That’s why they used rockets instead of assault weapons.
Vernon John says:
December 22, 2012 at 09:13
I am not a gun owner and guessing that you would call me an”anti-gunner”.
The Sandy Hook tragedy has brought a lot of discussion of guns between family and friends that unfortunately in causing many bad feelings.
Before the Sandy Hook tragedy an older family member with shaky and puffy hands, mental illness and a family history of suicide informed his son that he was purchasing a gun. His son and his wife were incredibly alarmed, correctly thinking that the acquisition of a firearm was totally inappropriate. However after the tragedy they were part of the voices shouting down “anti-gunners” calling for sensible gun control.
The reality is that the pervasiveness of guns and the ease at which guns can be acquired is part of the problem.
Guns are made for killing. All this discussion is related to the fact that guns are being used to kill many people in a short amount of time. Inundating society with more guns is creating a potential for more accidental gun deaths and more gun violence.
jim smith says:
December 22, 2012 at 14:04
This is an emotional issue magnified by a media that zooms in like Google earth. Rifles are seldom used in homicides (358 out of 12996 in 2010 and 323 out of 12664 in 2011 – See With 310 million Americans, this 12996 per year works out to about 1 person out of every 24000 being killed involuntarily by a gun each year. If you consider only the rifle, it works out to about 1 person out of 860000. Dwell on the magnitude of your individual significance next time you go to a stadium with 24000 or 860000 people. To me, that is a reasonable cost for freedom and the right to bear an AR15 with a large magazine. If you disagree, than what is a reasonable cost?
pat says:
December 23, 2012 at 01:10
Guns are indeed made for killing bad people who want to MURDER you and yours or perhaps want to try to take away your liberty (in the form of a future corrupt ‘Big Gov’) and put you in a concentration camp or gulag.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:17
That old Vlad the Impaler had the right idea. He killed folks by impaling them on bloody spikes, so they died nice and SLOW… and yep, them spikes was MADE for killing.

I’m what you’d probably call an “anti-spiker”.
john says:
July 16, 2013 at 22:02
No guns are not made for killing,they are made for stopping bad guys,If they die that is their fault.Your made to kill argument is hollow.The good use of guns to stop major felonies runs over two million times a year in America.Far far more good use than bad.
Rich says:
December 22, 2012 at 09:58
If police need so called assault rifles we the people need them all the more. Who are the real first responder? We the people are the first responders. Its not a bill of needs neither is it?
Sansena says:
December 22, 2012 at 10:23
Maybe the reason police carry assault weapons in a post disaster setting is precisely because there are so many of similar weapons in the hands of civilians and, in tense environments, civil misunderstandings and tensions can get out of hand quickly. So, if someone owning a few of these weapons and a few 30 – 100 round magazines decides to take things into their own hands,mthe police may need to intervene. So, because of your “right” to these weapons, we, the rest of the people have to pay for more, and more powerful weapons and protection for first responders who should be responding to serve and protect, not to defend against someone armed to the hilt with a latent distrust of people. Moreover, you may have noticed that many homes in NY/NJ were thrown off their foundations and otherwise destroyed. Hope that gun case where the arsenal is locked up survives the home collapsing around it. Again, police have no idea what happens to, and who has control of these assault weapons in a crisis. So…
john says:
July 16, 2013 at 22:07
More people are killed by fists feet and knives than any rifle every year in America.The rush to ban Ar 15s is a con job by Govt. cause they want the most effective resistance weapon the citizens have OUT OF OUR HANDS AND IN THEIR HANDS.They are the ones not to be trusted with guns,not the citizens,
Carl says:
December 22, 2012 at 12:09
Great story. Lots of good sound facts, rational arguments, and irrefutable logic.

However expecting a mush-brained, gun-fearing, liberal, anti-constitutionalist to consider these points is absurd.
Testicoli says:
December 22, 2012 at 14:12
I am a supporter of the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution. I must confess, however, I haven’t read the Constitution cover to cover since my ninth grade civics class years ago, and I need to revisit it, particularly the wording of the 2nd Amendment. Having said that, I ask a question for which I do not have the answer myself: “What essays or other literature have our country’s founding fathers written outside of the Constitution to expound on the full intent of the 2nd Amendment?” In other words, I would like to know if our founding fathers intended for the average citizen to be able to own weapons that far exceed a hunting musket or that could exceed the issued weaponry of law enforcement, which may be sometimes limited to shotguns and glock handguns (although ARs are often part of police officers’ arsenals nowadays)? Should I be able to own a bazooka or a tank? Is there a line where the 2nd Amendment stops or should stop when it comes to firearm ownership? Would our 1st Amendment rights of free speech be trampled on in a society where everyone legally carried a concealed handgun and everyone is walking on eggshells, afraid to speak anything negative to someone else’s face for fear of it escalating into a wild-west shootout or a pistol dual at 12 paces?

In my own opinion, a person should be able to defend himself against an angry mob or some home intruders with either a shotgun or a handgun with a large capacity magazine? And, from my personal standpoint, I think I could chase off looters in a riot outside a small store in the L.A. rights armed with just a shotgun and a Glock 19 with 15 rounds and a couple extra magazines. If you personally need an AR or a bazooka to accomplish what I can do with a shotgun and a Glock, have a it. It’s your right by law to do so (actually, I think the bazooka is illegal for civilians, but hey).

Maybe one day when the Chinese decide to collect on the trillions of debt we owe them by invading Alaska, you’ll get a real chance to use that AR. Better still, you could always sign up for a tour in Afghanistan where you could put your gun knowledge to real use and shoot actual combatants as opposed to the imagined gang of 10 rapists you fear will come to your door in search of your women. But it’s your life, do what you want. I personally choose to live by faith in Christ (OK, and a shotgun and Glock, too :-)) as opposed to fear and paranoia. Bulletproof walls to protect your kids from stray bullets? Really? To each his own, I guess.

Now, in all seriousness, I think now that the genie is out of the bottle, so to speak, and assault weapons are a fact of life and are owned by numerous people nowadays, the best we can do to protect our children in our schools in a free society is as follows:

1) Permit teachers to conceal/carry but require those that do want to conceal/carry to pass rigid, government-overseen psychological testing and detailed hands-on tactical training for how to thwart attackers and protect children and work in tandem with law enforcement on the scene. (This does have its risks, of course, as a teacher can go loony tunes or can have a gun taken away from them. That is why Corrections officers in prisons typically only have pepper spray and maybe a baton, but no gun.)

2) Pay to have police officers in all schools as the NRA is recommending.

3) Put small bullet-proof “safe rooms in every class room in ever school.

4) Provide kids with bullet-proof backpacks and attacker evasion training.

5) Require a new 30-day thorough background check for all retail gun purchases, including a centralized, government-overseen database of the mental-health-oriented medical records of all assault weapon buyers, where available.

6) Require real and serious training for all gun owners. Hell you can’t behind a car without a license. Why the hell should you be able to own a gun if all you have to do is shoot it one time to a get conceal/carry permit? If we are promoting a society where everyone should carry their own gun to defend them against threats, then we had damn well better do something to make sure that people know how to handle a firearm in tactical situations when other civilians may be nearby.

7) Increase lock-down security procedures and features at schools so that lock-down can be done quickly and in an automated way if necessary. Yes, this is kind of like prison, but it will save lives. Classroom doors should be solid, bulletproof and magnetically locked when closed.

8) Lastly, if you are a die-hard “get government out my life” Republican, take off your “everything is black and white” blinders for a minute. In other words, you can keep your AR and all your 2nd Amendment rights. However, don’t then complain about “big government” getting in your face with more rules and regulations such as those I propose above or about teachers getting big fancy government worker pensions (tell that to the teacher, Ms. Soto, in Newtown). And don’t complain about getting about your taxes going up to pay for more police officers in schools, for school safety enhancements, and the tactical firearm certifications for teachers at every school. You can’t have mass gun use in a free society without expecting a corresponding governmental financial cost to provide defensive measures to protect the citizenry from itself.

Not all government is bad. And the government regulation of firearms, handled carefully, would not be bad either. I think we can all have the 2nd Amendment and assault weapons too. But there needs to federal/state/local government initiatives in place and government laws passed to mandate the proper defensive measures and protections at our schools like the ones I have listed above.

Your thoughts are appreciated.
Scott Henrichs says:
December 22, 2012 at 17:29
How much government mandated training do you have to submit to so you could exercise your first amendment right and write this? How about before you voted in November? Yep that is exactly how much training we should have to undergo to exercise our 2nd amendment rights.

I truly believe that anyone who wants to defend themselves and their loved ones should seek professional training in the use of firearms. My issue is in allowing the government to mandate that training. We would then end up with people who have no clue about self defense making rules about what training is adequate and necessary.
Testicoli says:
December 23, 2012 at 12:29

Respectfully, I would have to say that your statement saying that free speech and firearm use should require the same amount of training (none), is just illogical. You simply cannot put talking, writing, or other free speech on the same level as wielding a firearm. Words and speech can be hurtful or dangerous to be sure, but in and of themselves, words and speech cannot blow off another person’s head like a gun can. If what you said were logical, we would be handing pistols to infants in cribs so that they could be saying their first words as they unloaded their first mag.

And, I don’t think the NRA is end-all-be-all in terms of training civilians on firearm use, and I think that our government (a government of us, the people) could play a big role in training the civilian population on the use of firearms. Imagine, for example, if our country required civil defense duty like, say, Switzerland, where every young adult male has to do some sort of mandatory civil defense training and learn how to operate and use firearms and other weapons in the protection of their country. Our military forces could play a key role in educating civilians and in helping to better provide security of our nation’s people. This might even help provide a better sense of unity in our country and a better sense of civic responsibility. Here are some interesting articles on Swiss Civil defense:

I think that part of problem with the American mentality, right now at least, is that too many of us are quick to say “less government” to everything and we falsely assume that private industry and private organizations like the NRA are the answer to every problem we have.
Josef Kozlov says:
December 22, 2012 at 21:20
The second amendment was not specifically created to allow for hunting, sporting, or even individual self-defense. Those are merely “benefits.” The 2nd Amendment was written as a defense against a tyrannical government, as it was and is the people’s responsibility to protect the Constitution from a government that has too much power. Here are some quotes from various founding fathers. It is in no way comprehensive, but it will give you an idea of their intentions when they wrote the 2nd Amendment.

“Americans have the right and advantage of being armed – unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.” – James Madison
“The Constitution shall never be construed … to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms.” – Samuel Adams
“The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.” – Alexander Hamilton
“When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually…I ask, who are the militia? They consist of now of the whole people, except a few public officers. But I cannot say who will be the militia of the future day. If that paper on the table gets no alteration, the militia of the future day may not consist of all classes, high and low, and rich and poor… “- George Mason, Virginia Constitution Convention
“A strong body makes a strong mind. As to the species of exercise I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Let your gun, therefore, be the constant companion of your walks.” – Thomas Jefferson
“To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.” – Richard Henry Lee 1788
“To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.” – George Mason
“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” – Thomas Jefferson’s “Commonplace Book,” 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764
“Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?” – Patrick Henry
” …arms…discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. …Horrid mischief would ensue were (the law-abiding) deprived the use of them. — Thomas Paine
“The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that… it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.” –Thomas Jefferson
We should not forget that the spark which ignited the American Revolution was caused by the British attempt to confiscate the firearms of the colonists. – Patrick Henry

Here are a couple of links that provide further analysis

The reason why tanks, nukes, bazookas, rpg’s, and missiles are not protected under the 2nd Amendment for use by average citizens is because those weapons, analogous to cannons and various explosives during colonial times were considered ordinances, rather than arms. Those weapons kill indiscriminately, while firearms, even semi-automatic firearms are designed to be aimed and fired at a single target.

The hypothetical situation I presented was a direct response to the hypothetical questions and situations written by the poster to which I originally replied. I do not really intend to bullet proof my walls and, while I am prepared against them, I do not expect armed thugs to break into my house anytime soon. I was merely using that as an example to answer one the original commenters questions. What you see as fearful and paranoid, many may simply consider being prepared. That is relative. However, there are people out there that are directly threatened by circumstances such as those I presented, and they should have the right to the best defenses possible to protect the most important aspects of their lives. If you feel comfortable with a Glock and a shotgun, you have that choice. If someone feels more secure with an AR-15, they should have the right to choose it. I personally feel more comfortable with an AR-15, and I would rather not take any chances.

I agree with with points 1,2,7, and partially 8.
It seems as though points 3 and 4 are almost mocking what I had written in my original comment, considering just before that you implied that I was fearful and paranoid for suggesting someone has the right to bulletproof their walls to protect their children. All-in-all that comes down to the parents’ choice as far as bullet-proof backpacks are concerned, and it should not be government mandated or subsidized.

I partially agree with part 5, but 30 days seems to be rather inefficient. I do believe that all gun transfers at shows and in stores should require background checks, but the information should be compiled into a database like the NICS before hand, so that it only has to be done once, rather than multiple times when people purchase multiple guns over a period of time. Also, define “assault weapon.”

I do not support government required training. It should be highly encouraged, and manufacturers and groups like the NRA could even subsidize if they so chose. Cars and driving require a license because driving is a privilege granted by the state. Gun ownership is a right.

In regards to 8, I would be fine paying hire taxes to support a useful program that benefits our children, and I believe most people, even many Republicans would not mind it either, considering Gallup polls show 87% of people support an increased police presence in schools. What conservatives do not support is wasteful government spending and government meddling in the free market in attempt to determine winners and loser, but that is a completely different discussion.
Testicoli says:
December 23, 2012 at 12:52
Hey Josef,

Thanks for the thoughtful and insightful quotes and commentary. Your quotes from our founding fathers reaffirm my own feeling about the absolute necessity of the 2nd Amendment and the importance of firearms in a free society.

By the way, I was not mocking you with points 3 and 4. (Although, I was mocking you a little with my earlier comments about bulletproof walls throughout your house. To each his own.) .

In all seriousness, I think having one or two small but secured, bulletproof walk-in closets in classrooms that could temporarily shelter a group of 15 or so small kids (albeit in cramped quarters) during an attacker’s rampage, would be helpful and could save lives. In my mind, these rooms would work kind of like the tornado-safe rooms built in houses in tornado prone areas of the country. And I was not kidding about the bulletproof backpacks either, and I think backpacks that could be worn as bullet proof vests could also save lives. Although I don’t advocate the government and our tax dollars providing those bulletproof backpacks.

As far as my thoughts on the role government can play in training on gun use, please see my reply to Scott in this blog.
Mossberg44 says:
December 22, 2012 at 14:39
Why Americans Need the AR-15 “Assault Rifle”
Isn’t it obvious?
For lawful purposes.
Dan says:
December 22, 2012 at 14:47
The Second Amendment clearly has limits. If not for the “well regulated” language, then the Second Amendment is limited by virtue of the fact that it does not unequivocally prohibit Congress from regulating firearms. If the Second Amendment prohibits all regulations on guns, then it would say so, and we wouldn’t be having this debate.

The question is: should assault rifles (and their various accouterments) be regulated or banned as a matter of policy? The answer is yes.

Even if we opponents of gun regulation had the burden of proving that AR rifles should be regulated in the first instance, they met that burden several mass shootings ago. And the burden was met yet again last Friday when 20 first graders were killed in a matter of minutes by an AR rifle that was legally purchased and owned.

Society has tried it your way, allowing the unfettered sale, dissemination, and ownership of AR style weapons. But now we’ve seen the disastrous consequences. The burden thus shifts to you to explain why we should not ban these weapons outright.

Let’s look at your best arguments.

Most of your reasons for keeping AR style weapons legal are based on “what ifs” that never seem to materialize. For example, “what if my home is invaded by FOUR thugs?” Really? I suspect that most of the people making this argument live in suburbs with well-manicured yards, so it’s not really a convincing argument. Or, how about, “I need an AR rifle in case there’s a complete breakdown of civil order.” If that happens, you’ll probably need to worry about food, and money, and a lot of other things before you need to worry about repelling your neighbors with military-esque firepower. And if it comes to that, you’re probably done anyway, so what’s the point? Do these hypothetical “what ifs” outweigh lives of 20 first grade students (as the NRA would say “right now”)? At what point will you agree that the scales of better policy have shifted in favor of sensible regulation?

You keep telling us that we need guns to protect us from the guns that are out there. But the rest of us keep waiting with baited breath for a headline that an armed “citizen hero” actually thwarted one of these mass-shooting attacks. It never seems to happen. It’s not likely to happen either because the moment someone unveils one of these AR rifles you love so much, and begins to spray bullets into a crowd of unsuspecting students, movie goers, or mall shoppers, it’s already too late, no matter how many people with concealed weapons there are nearby. (Also, didn’t the police just shoot nine bystanders in NY near the Empire State Building trying to kill a gunman? How much better would your 3rd grade teacher have done?)

It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy that we now “need” assault rifles for protection because we allowed everyone and their cousin, including criminals, to get a hold of one. Your best bet is to admit now that it was a stupid and misguided decision in the first place for society to allow AR style weapons to be manufactured and sold en masse. All of this seriously hurts your credibility, and your credibility is what the American people are going to be scrutinizing over the next few months.
jwm says:
December 22, 2012 at 14:55
Dan, we are the American people. There’s not a dozen guys in outer podunk that own these guns. They’re a common item now. How would you remove them from society? Send the army door to door?

I don’t even own a weapon that would come under the heading of an AWB and I would oppose such moves.
Scott Henrichs says:
December 22, 2012 at 17:43
It states exactly that.
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
The term “well regulated” meant well equipped or well prepared at the time the amendments were passed. So in today’s language it would read
A well equipped civilian population being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
All infringement on the right to bear arms in unconstitutional and allowing further infringement isn’t going to do anything to keep our children safe.
Josef Kozlov says:
December 22, 2012 at 19:09
First off, the burden of proof is on gun control advocates to show that any proposed “assault weapons” ban would actually effectively prevent another mass shooting, not that an “assault weapons” ban is needed due to the number of mass shootings, on the presumption it will stop mass shootings. I could use the number of mass shooting that have occurred in “gun free zones” to satisfy the burden of proof that those zones create the unarmed resistance that mass shooters look for, and should, therefore, be removed.

All the proposed “assault weapons” bans do not require those who already own these guns to turn them in, and unless we enact the same policies Australia has, which would entail a complete ban on “assault weapon,” concealed carry, and most handguns, requiring law-abiding citizens to turn their guns in, there will be no effect on mass shootings.

So if you want to use more gun control targeted at law abiding citizens to stop mass shootings, start a grass roots movement so you can elect as many anti-gun rights politicians into office as you can, then try to amend the 2nd and 4th amendments of the Bill of Rights to allow for the seizure of such firearms and hope that SCOTUS will reinterpret previous rulings on the second amendment.

If you were able to essentially ban private ownership of guns, you may reduce gun-related crime somewhat and eventually stop mass shootings, but the overall crime rate would likely remain the same and you can never stop mass murders, no matter what laws are enacted. You would probably be better off moving to Australia or Japan, if you want to escape guns.

The hypothetical situation describing the home invasion was in direct response to the original comment to which I replied in the previous article. My “what if’s” are a response to his “what if’s.”
And if there is a break down in society, I will already have food, water, and any other basic necessities, and the guns would be used to defend those necessities from anyone who would wish to kill myself or my family for them.

It is no surprise that you do not hear about citizens preventing mass shootings in the media. For one thing, the always shooter is neutralized before they become mass murderers. And for some reason the media does not think that makes as “good” of story as a mass shooting at a school.

Here are some examples of possible mass shootings that have been stopped by either an armed citizen or an off-duty police officer:

– Mayan Palace Theater, San Antonio, Texas, this week: Jesus Manuel Garcia shoots at a movie theater, a police car and bystanders from the nearby China Garden restaurant; as he enters the movie theater, guns blazing, an armed off-duty cop shoots Garcia four times, stopping the attack. Total dead: Zero.

– Winnemucca, Nev., 2008: Ernesto Villagomez opens fire in a crowded restaurant; concealed carry permit-holder shoots him dead. Total dead: Two. (I’m excluding the shooters’ deaths in these examples.)

– Appalachian School of Law, 2002: Crazed immigrant shoots the dean and a professor, then begins shooting students; as he goes for more ammunition, two armed students point their guns at him, allowing a third to tackle him. Total dead: Three.

– Santee, Calif., 2001: Student begins shooting his classmates — as well as the “trained campus supervisor”; an off-duty cop who happened to be bringing his daughter to school that day points his gun at the shooter, holding him until more police arrive. Total dead: Two.

– Pearl High School, Mississippi, 1997: After shooting several people at his high school, student heads for the junior high school; assistant principal Joel Myrick retrieves a .45 pistol from his car and points it at the gunman’s head, ending the murder spree. Total dead: Two.

– Edinboro, Pa., 1998: A student shoots up a junior high school dance being held at a restaurant; restaurant owner pulls out his shotgun and stops the gunman. Total dead: One

Four of those occurred during the original assault weapons ban.

Even the mall shooting in Oregon ended when a concealed carry holder leveled his gun at the shooter. However this has hardly been reported.

I think the scales of better policy have shifted in favor of “sensible” regulation, but I do not think any proposals for an “assault weapons” ban are sensible. What we need are smart gun laws, targeted directly at criminals, and we need background checks to include those who are mentally unstable from purchasing firearms. States need to share this information with each other and the federal government. What we do not need is blanket legislation that only targets law-abiding citizens.
Dan says:
December 22, 2012 at 22:10

I agree with you that there are so many privately owned guns out there, that a prospective ban on assault rifles alone would not prevent all future mass shootings. But over the long run, it would help to reduce the number of assault weapons used in mass shootings, and therefore decrease the death toll going forward.

Obviously, an immediate ban on the sale of new assault rifles would freeze the number of assault rifles out there. This would, of course, increase their value, and at the very least make it more expensive for street-level criminals to get their hands on one. Had assault rifles like the one Adam Lanza used been banned, I think we can agree that his mother probably wouldn’t have had one lying around the house. If Adam Lanza didn’t have an assault rifle, perhaps the carnage would not have been so great.

Requiring better background checks is not a bad idea. But any move towards a national mental health database is no solution. It at once goes too far, yet does too little.

It’s hard to believe that gun rights advocates, who say they live by the concept of personal liberty, would ever accept, let alone propose, something like a national mental health database. The notion that the Government would keep a list of every American with a mental health issue is an abhorrent, utterly unacceptable invasion of privacy. It honestly sounds like something from Third Reich. And, practically speaking, wouldn’t it just deter people from seeking treatment?

Further, as you pointed out about the proposed assault weapon ban, how would background checks be effective in preventing the next mass shooting given the number of guns out there now? And what about people with no prior mental health history? Or people who refuse treatment, or fall through the cracks? If I recall correctly, several of the recent mass shooters had no significant mental health histories. And, we all saw that Adam Lanza didn’t purchase the assault rifle he used. Moreover, this “solution” fails to address the more fundamental problem, which is how to reduce the number (or effectiveness of) guns used in crimes regardless of whether mental health is a component.

Lastly, on the issue of banning guns in certain public places — what evidence is there that laws banning guns at schools caused any of the school shootings? Or any of the other recent mass shootings for that matter? Has a single teacher from Sandy Brook stood up and said that they would have had a gun at school that day but for the law banning them? If they did, would that have made Adam Lanza change his mind about targeting a school? Adam Lanza had a death wish. Did he choose to target a school because he knew teachers didn’t have guns? Or did he choose to target a school because he knew it would garner the most attention and he could kill a large number of people (or children) in one place, in a short amount of time? Any potential mass shooter has to know their chance of running into a private citizen with a gun in virtually any public spaces is low regardless of any conceal-carry law. (Wasn’t there recently a “mass shooting” at an army base, by a deranged army psychologist?)

Perhaps arming teachers and putting armed guards in schools is all that we have left. If so, it’s a sad testament to who we’ve become, an exacting price for our shortsightedness as a society. We set the machine in motion and lost control by our own inertia. We created the mass-shooter archetype, and we readily handed him the best weapons to carry out his plans.
Robert C. Hall says:
February 9, 2013 at 13:12
“what evidence is there that laws banning guns at schools caused any of the school shootings?”

We can’t be sure of the thinking of these evil people as they plan their killing sprees, but the examples given by Koslov (that you ignored) clearly show how easy it is for just one or two armed good guys to stop an active shooter. What those GFZ laws definitely do cause is a total lack of armed good guys at any of the big mass shootings, including Ft. Hood, you idiot, which was a GFZ. Check a fact or two once in a while.
William says:
December 27, 2012 at 14:23
Washington Redskin Sean Taylor’s Miami home was invaded for four such armed thugs. Because he’d had some gun troubles in “gun-friendly” Miami (pointing a gun at some punks who were stealing two ATVs from him), he’d gotten all the guns out of his house. He faced them, protecting his girlfriend and baby daughter, with a machete. THEY SHOT HIM DEAD.

That won’t shut you up, but who the hell cares what YOU say?
LarryR says:


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