gun question

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gun question

Postby pilvikki » 24 Dec 2012, 08:16


all this talk about guns... so what is the difference between automatic, semi automatic, repeater and assault weapons?
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 24 Dec 2012, 19:46

Well semi automatic guns fire from one pull on the trigger (x amount of bullets), and then you have to pull the trigger again to let off another round. Automatics fire off the rounds until you take your finger off the trigger. It's got something to do with the chambers and how the bullets are pushed forward or revolved (fed). I'm not too sure there's a great deal of difference between the two except that automatics can probably fire more bullets in one go, and you can keep firing by pressing the trigger until the magazine's completely empty.

Repeaters speak for themselves really. Repeater air guns for example, might fire off 8 pellets which've been pre-loaded, instead of a single-shot gun which needs to be reloaded each time.

Assault weapons? I haven't a clue why they're called that, except that some are mounted on armoured vehicles. Other than that, I don't know what differentiates them from any other semi or fully automatic gun.

It's a pity that we have to have such things at all, apart from guns for hunting.
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Re: gun question

Postby Yogi » 26 Dec 2012, 11:23

Assault weapons are typically those used by the military for, well, assaulting the enemy. These guns and their ammo are designed to do the maximum amount of damage, over the greatest distance, as quickly as possible. They are perfect infantry weapons, but I can't think of any rational reason why a civilian would want to use such a weapon, the NRA notwithstanding. The issue being defended by gun supporters is the "right" of American citizens to own such a weapon. It's a false argument given that the 2nd Amendment to our constitution does not establish any such right. It does, however, prohibit congress from banning ownership of guns in general.
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 26 Dec 2012, 19:30

Can the amendments not be changed Yogi? I mean, the original "rights", like laws over here, must be quite old now, and might not appertain to today's society? I'm not familiar with all the amendments, but doesn't the 2nd one state that it's an individual right to bear arms?
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Re: gun question

Postby Yogi » 27 Dec 2012, 20:09

An amendment to the constitution can be changed or revoked. The whole constitution can be rewritten under certain circumstances, and doing that has in fact been suggested in modern times. It's my understanding that the 2nd amendment prohibits congress from passing any laws that prevents our citizens from owning guns. The idea of having a right to bear arms comes from that prohibition.

There is nothing in the second amendment that says ordinary citizens must be allowed to own and operate assault weapons, or any other kinds of weapons for that matter. Since there is also no guideline for keeping guns out of the hands of criminals or mentally deranged individuals, the argument that the amendment gives us a "right" to bear arms is open ended. Everybody has the right to own any kind of weapon. People such as the National Rifle Association clearly believe that our founding fathers deliberately intended to allow nut cases to own assault weapons. :roll:
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 28 Dec 2012, 11:35

Awww, well thank you for that. I think all modern countries should be looking at ways of trying to get rid of the gun culture, but of course, then we get the pro-hunting groups, and I fall into that category if it's for food, so I suppose one could argue that if it's alright for some, then it's alright for all. I don't know, but if someone's not an active member of a gun club, or doesn't have access to land where it's allowed, then what other reason would they need a weapon for unless it was to "protect themselves" - which basically means that the gun's there with the intention of using it against another human being?
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Re: gun question

Postby pilvikki » 28 Dec 2012, 22:05


am i mistaken thinking that the text specifies "right to bear arms during armed conflict?" i e when the country is threatened? or there's an uprising of sorts...? :think: :think:

that is a totally different view from carrying one in my back pocket because i can.
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 29 Dec 2012, 08:16

Ah, is that what it says?
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Re: gun question

Postby bermbits » 30 Dec 2012, 21:47

The Second Amendment: "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 real question is whether the second part is dependent on the first part. In other words, would gun owners need to be part of a "well regulated militia" as a condition of owning guns. Anti's focus on the whole; pro's, just the second part. The problem comes in in deciding exactly what it means (interpretation).
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 31 Dec 2012, 07:45

Thank you bermbits. From an outsider's interpretation of that, I'd go with the anti's. If the Amendment's been punctuated properly, the *right of people to keep and bear arms ..." is within the same sentence as the rest of it, therefore referring to " "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state..."

If the part which says: " the right of the people to keep and bear arms..." was to be part of, or to start a new sentence, then it'd read as though individuals have the right to keep/use weapons, but it doesn't seem that way to me.

However, I see the problem with deciding on the original meaning. "To bear arms" literally means to carry weapons to defend oneself or one's country, so those who're all for private gun ownership can legitimately argue that it means they have an individual right - although, as you say, would they be prepared to be part of a "well regulated militia" if called upon?

Perhaps, as Yogi says, the Amendment could be looked at and changed if deemed necessary, but because of the vast amount of money which's made from the gun trade, and because gun owners feel that prohibition'd take away their rights, it's an awkward one.

Perhaps a better idea'd be to make buying and owning a gun more strict, with stringent checks carried out on application, but it still wouldn't solve all the problems, and some folk'd fight to their death to keep their weapons if they were to be confiscated, so maybe it should be mandatory that owners actively join licenced gun clubs, and their use and safety checks are carried out by professionals?
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Re: gun question

Postby bermbits » 31 Dec 2012, 07:59

This is one more of the great debates of our times. Laws mean nothing to the 'bad guys,' so even if every legally-owned gun somehow disappeared, the only armed people left would be the 'bad guys.'

There is no easy answer (if there is one at all). To me the problem lies within people embracing a violent society and losing basic human decency.
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 31 Dec 2012, 08:51

I agree with you. Very often, it starts from childhood. If you think your children are hanging out with gangs or "the wrong sort", you take your children away from that if you have any sense. Some folk don't agree, saying that children have to mix with all sorts in order to get experience of what people are like, but I don't hold with that. Kids are easily led, and the "forbidden" seems exciting, but can lead to trouble.

In our primary schools, there's been a turn-around. A case of "catch 'em while they're young", whereby respect and manners are expected and taught. There's also talk of introducing "relationship classes". None of this'll work if parents don't lead by example, but if it helps just one child by making them consider their actions, then it's a start.

Re. the guns, you're absolutely right. The "bad guys'll" always have access to them, but again, I still say that upbringing counts for a lot. Take people away from those bad environments, and you can turn out some decent ones, but it takes time, money and education. Living in squalor and deprivation doesn't help, but it seems odd that years ago, couples had large families and hardly any money, yet honesty and decency were often the rules of the house, showing that poverty isn't always the cause.

Just my personal opinion, but I think our materialistic world IS, and when people feel there's no hope or future, and want what others've got, they're going to be tempted to take, and live by any means which guarantees them some sort of "respect" and money. This's often where guns and other weapons come in - let alone talking about the folk who want to own a gun "because they can".
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Re: gun question

Postby Yogi » 31 Dec 2012, 13:52

People came to this country because they felt oppressed back home. As I recall, there was some kind of skirmish between England and the Americans to that effect. The "new" world was established in an attempt to break away from the past and create a society wherein it's members are equal under the law. Our constitution and subsequent amendments was adopted as guidelines to accomplish that lofty goal. The authors of the constitution were vague and incomplete in many instances. Perhaps they knew the world would change beyond what they could imagine at the time, and perhaps they wanted to establish guidelines that would withstand those changes.

The important concept here is in the word guidelines. In regard to the second amendment it obviously is in reference to a militia - a volunteer army. If it meant anything less specific, then the arming of a militia would not have been spelled out so clearly. Unfortunately, because its a guideline many interpretations can be applied.
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 31 Dec 2012, 14:59

Yes, and it's not anything easily solved is it? I'm all for people keeping guns for self and family protection if they don't become trigger-happy, but therein lies the problem, because sometimes a mild-mannered person can explode, so who's to judge who's OK to own one, and who's not? Perhaps the general public should be banned from owning them altogether, with severe penalties for anyone caught with one, but it just goes round in a circle. That'd mean no hunting, no target practice, no gun hobbies allowed at all. It'd be difficult to implement, let alone trying to prevent guns being held illegally.

As for travelling to America, the pilgrims sought the New World where they could practice their religions. Here, King James and the church were as one. If you weren't a member of the church, it was classed as treason against the King, and not just here, but the kings of Europe as well, so these people set sail to find a new life. Those who made it, settled in what's now New York, and were given help and money from US profits. This enabled them to buy a new boat, sail back to England and pick up more people to take back for a better life. Can't say as I blame them. Royal power was stifling in those days. When Henry V111 reigned, religion was chosen on his whim, alternating between Church of England and Catholic rites, dictated by whoever his wife was at the time. To argue against it meant incarceration and often death.

I think the American constitution was drawn up in good faith at the time, but of course, all members of society WEREN'T equal in law. President Lincoln was known as an abolitionist for his stance against slavery, but his Emancipation Proclamation specifically only freed slaves in areas of the Confederacy that weren't under Union control. It was a start though, whereas over here, did you know that slavery only became illegal in the UK in 2010?!! In the 11th century, 10% of the population were slaves, and used as a bartering medium for years afterwards. What with that, and the strict laws laid down by Crown and church, it's no wonder that people wanted to flee.

With regard to gun ownership, it really is difficult. Most people over here are glad that you can't just go out and buy one without tough checks, but it hasn't stopped massacres and individual shootings. These are, however, still quite rare, and there's more to be feared from terrorist activities than wondering if some loony's going to blast your head off. I think if the law was made more lax, this'd change though. We have quite a lot of knife crimes now, and if it was easier to obtain a gun, I'm sure that these'd be used in place of those weapons. Sigh ....
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Re: gun question

Postby Yogi » 01 Jan 2013, 08:04

The moral of the story is that it's in human nature to kill off one another. No written laws can change that.
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 01 Jan 2013, 09:44

Man's one of the worst creatures on this planet.
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Re: gun question

Postby pilvikki » 01 Jan 2013, 14:53


if it's inherent that we want to kill each other, why are we still around? and personally i've not felt like killing anyone since i've had nothing to do with WSIB, unions or my former employer...
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Re: gun question

Postby Ice.Maiden » 01 Jan 2013, 16:05

:P

It was an "in a manner of speaking" comment, I thought.

Man, as a whole, is aggressive. We kill for pleasure as well, which few animals do, but not everyone's out to kill others - just the greedy, the power-hungry, the dictators - and the maniacs and those who can't control their emotions. That covers quite a few actually, but the majority of folk want peace and friendliness.
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Re: gun question

Postby Yogi » 04 Jan 2013, 14:41

Yes, the urge to kill was a metaphor referring to our animal instincts. When threatened, for real or imagined, killing the attacker is an accepted option. In America the love of guns is partly due to our origins as a country. We don't have a long history of feudalism in our past. The settlers came, and guns were required to survive. If for no other purpose the guns were needed to hunt down food. Back in those days wearing a gun was no different than wearing pants. Most men did it routinely out of necessity. There was no feudal landlord to answer to or from which to obtain protection. The times have changed but our history has not. There is still a frontier mentality that is prevalent, and that includes the need for weapons. Perhaps once we have settled into this New World as long as Europeans or Asians have been living in theirs, attitudes could change.
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Re: gun question

Postby threenorns » 04 Jan 2013, 17:11

"to keep and bear arms"

where does it say "firearms"? the definition of "arms" is "weaponry". a weapon is "A thing designed or used for inflicting bodily harm or physical damage."

banning guns would not at all infringe on the second amendment, since there are many MANY arms of choice not requiring bullets.
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