After every major shooting, the gun control advocates can be counted on to ask "NOW can't you see the need for gun control?" But does gun control really make sense?

Would gun control have prevented this slaughter? I doubt it. Guns will continue to be available for the person determined to get one, and the kind of person who does something like the Colorado movie theater shooting would be determined.

The problem isn't the weapon, it's the intent, and there are plenty of other ways to kill. There are even plenty of ways to kill en masse. A bomb brought into the theater could have killed more as could an incendiary device. In other contexts, there's poisoning food or water.

Is the cause of gun violence really the availability of guns or is it the nature of the people who use them? Other countries have similar or greater rates of gun possession (I believe both Israel and Switzerland have higher rates), but they don't have nearly the rate of gun violence.

The difference in gun violence between Switzerland and the United States comes down to the difference between the Swiss people and Americans, and I don't see Americans changing in any fundamental way anytime soon.

Tags: batman, colorado, control, gun, shooting

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This country is insane!  We not only routinely kill each other with guns by the tens of thousands every year, we are PROUD of it!   USA!  USA!  USA!

Last year, Canada had 144 gun deaths by homicide.    We had just shy of 10,000.   USA!  USA!  USA!

We had more deaths than the combined total of all the countries in the world except 4, where virtual civil wars were being waged.   NRA!  NRA!  NRA! 

No more than the War on Drugs has prevented drug abuse. What kind of hate did the childhood of that young man - who by all reports was quite intelligent - foster?

I have no problems with people having a hand gun for protection or a rifle for hunting but should the average person be allowed access to powerful automatic military style weapons over the counter? Maybe some control is needed in that area?

Reg - I've seen StreetSweepers for sale in a gun shop. (For those who don't know what a StreetSweeper is, it's a 12-gauge shotgun, with a 1940's Tommygun-style disk mounted in the middle that feeds ammunition for rapid fire.)

Who in the hell needs a StreetSweeper?!!

I have had a hankering for a 2 gigawatt plasma cannon, for clearing trees. What else do you think I was going to use it for? LOL  

"I can't get an assault rifle? Oh well, I guess I'll make a bomb."

OR, you could bore them all to death - that wouldn't take long --

Behind every chemistry or physics nerd there lies a possible pyro with delusions of grandure. I think knowledge demands deep responsibility. Knowing that there is more than enough ugliness already, is a good place to start!

And why do people forget that making a crude gun is a trivial exercise? And someone suitably motivated can make an automatic variety too. Once the concept behind the weapon is common knowledge, it's essentially impossible to ban or fully regulate. 

I have no problems with people having a hand gun for protection or a rifle for hunting but should the average person be allowed access to powerful automatic military style weapons over the counter? Maybe some control is needed in that area?

This is an incredibly ignorant statement.  "Automatic military style weapons" are already very strictly controlled.  And have been since the 1930s.  Furthermore, only one or two of the firearms on this registry has ever been used in a crime.  You need to fill out a yard of paperwork to get one, and because it is now illegal to manufacture them for this market, the ones that exist command ridiculous five-figure prices.

What you see that looks like an "automatic military style weapon," is usually a semi-automatic version of the military weapon, where it is necessary to pull the trigger each time you want the gun to fire. The news media doesn't point this out very often either out of ignorance or mendacity.

Thank you Steve.

Automatic (more accurately, fully-automatic) means it keeps firing as long as you hold the trigger down. This is commonly called a "machine gun" or "automatic weapon". This type of weapon is ILLEGAL without a special Federal license, and not in all states (even with the license, you cannot own a weapon manufactured after 1986, when the law was passed).

What are perfectly legal and always have been, are semi-automatic firearms such as the theater shooter's AR-15. "Military-style" only means that it is black and scary-looking. It has nothing to do with the functioning of the firearm. AR-15s are civilian clones of the military M-16/M-4 family of guns. However, unlike their military counterparts, they are semi-automatic only, and they operate just like any semi-automatic handgun does: load a magazine, charge the weapon, and it will only fire one round at a time. So it is incorrect to refer to the theater shooter's AR-15 as an automatic weapon, but I see this all the time.

Also, an AR fires .223 ammo, which is actually underpowered compared with common hunting calibers. It's more of a varmint caliber. Ranchers shoot coyotes and prairie dogs with them, but they're not for deer hunting.

I'm under the impression that semi's can be converted to full's. It probably requires metalworking skills, suitable tools, and a set of instructions, but I don't even need to look using google to know that the instructions are out there.

Wherever there's a will...

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