Types of Firearms

Americans never cease to amaze me with their beliefs about firearms. There are four basic classes of firearms:

  1. target shooting
  2. hunting: rifles, shotguns and 22s for shooting mammals.
  3. murder: handguns.
  4. military mass murder: automatic weapons, large clip weapons, Howitzers, grenade launchers, anti-tank rifles, rockets…

Classes (3) and (4) have no legal use in a rural setting. Classes (2), (3) and (4) have no legal use in an urban setting. Remember, you can’t use guns to shoot criminals because it is not legal in the USA to kill someone for vandalising or stealing your property.

An organisation representing the arms industry, the NRA (National Rifle Association), lobbies ferociously to see that every American, no matter how criminal or mentally ill, owns large numbers of all four classes of weapon. They also ensure there is no interference with arming criminal gangs, terrorists and anyone else in foreign countries. Their motive is, surprise, profit. They are willing to sacrifice thousands of people as a side effect of selling all these guns.

They promote gun ownership by claiming it is patriotic, as if Americans would use handguns to fight off a Chinese invasion. That is a childish fantasy. The Second Amendment of the Constitution says 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. To me that says that states have a right to an armed militia, however, over the years the meaning of this phrase has been interpreted and re-interpreted by activist judges to mean that governments may not restrict the ownership and use of firearms in any way. I’m surprised the NRA has not lobbied to make personal nukes and anthrax protected too.

So the NRA works tireless to make sure folk like James Holmes (the Aurora Colorado killer) are fully armed with the latest mass massacre equipment. Al Qaeda could do a lot more damage to the USA if it shut down and redirected its funding stream to the NRA which has a proven track record of convincing Americans to shoot each other in the face.

If I had my way, I would ban class (3) and (4) weapons for personal use. Further, you would have to register a sample bullet fired from your class (1) and (2) weapons so that if you used your weapon in a crime, there would be good chance of identifying the weapon. You would be legally required to report a theft or sale.

The second problem with so freely arming the populace is the police assume everyone they interact with are armed and, at the tiniest provocation, shoot them dead. This does not happen in other countries where suspects are rarely armed. Police there are not so jumpy. In the USA, even people who do not carry guns suffer from this presumption.

~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:70)