Tuesday, August 18, 2009


The Limits of Personal Rights

There are few people who are purer purists about the Second Amendment than I am. I think non violent felonies should not prevent a citizen from owning a firearm. No violent misdemeanor conviction nor any restraining order should destroy one's Second Amendment rights. A 14 year old should be able to get a belt fed, full auto machine gun from the local hardware store and not fill out a single form*.

But even I think people should not bring weapons to meetings with our representatives, including our President.

Call it etiquette, but why make the Secret Service's job even harder.

*20mm and above needs a class III permit. You can own a nuke but if it injures anyone you are strictly liable and you are required to have a safe place for it and insurance to cover the possible damage it could do if it ever exploded.
UPDATE: Although I never noticed it, the guy carrying the AR 15 is African American. Look here for the editing MSNBC does to fit the narrative the talking (air) heads are peddeling, namely, that the gun carriers are racists, as well as bitter clingers to their guns, usw.
MSNBC obscuring the facts in order to attack gun carriers as racists and give sympathy and support to President Obama. What were the odds?



"A 14 year old should be able to get a belt fed, full auto machine gun from a local hardware store and not fill out a single form."

Okay, in nearly all non farm states, a 14 year cannot even get a learners permit to drive. Physiologically, teenagers brains are not fully mature which in part accounts why teens get into more auto accidents than older drivers.

I do not think we need to discuss that most teens, particularly younger ones, are not emotionally mature.

So why should a 14 year old be able to buy a fully automatic belt fed machine gun?

In addition, precisely what social good is accomplished by allowing any private citizen to own a fully automatic belt fed machine gun?

I'll argue that it's not judgment but ability to reach the pedels and operate the vehicle physically that keeps lerner's permits out of 14 year olds' hands, but I'm not married to the idea of 9th graders getting guns; we could wait until they are no longer freshmen in High School.

Freedom and our God given right to the pursuit of happiness are both social goods in my book. What about your?

I'm all for following one's bliss.

But allowing private citizens to own machine guns is an invitation to mayhem.

We gun lovers hate to mention this, but there are about 70,000 full auto guns owned by ordinary (but law abiding) citizens here in America; and since 1936, when owneship of these weapons began to be screened, there has been only one crime committed with one of these guns and that was by a cop. So I'm really not that worried about your prediction of mayhem if we open this ownership program up to say another 1,000,000 full auto guns. There are about that many full auto guns available to police and military personnel here in America. Again, few, if any, misuses of the guns by those guys either.

Of the 70,000, how many are collectors' items. For what can you use a fully automatic weapon, except shooting at the range?

Meanwhile, Columbine, Jonesboro, Red Lake, VA Tech, Zest for Life Spa. How much worse could these have been if the whack jobs who perpetrated them had access to fully automatic weapons?

Just because most are old doesn't mean they are not effective. We have never improved on the K-98 (1898) nor on the M-14 (1948) and the M 2 and MG 42 are both quintessential and never surpassed.

Shooting targets on the range is all I do with all my pistols and with some of the long rifles. Your point?

Yes, troubling to think that full autos could have made things worse in the mass murders you name. I think that Va Tech could not have been much worse even with full autos. Like the NRA I don't think violent criminals or crazy people should own any guns but in reality I am for giving the 2nd amendment the same treatment we've given speech in the 1st, that is, punishment for crimes only, no prior restraint.

Rifles and shot guns can be used for hunting. Handguns can be used for self defense. All may be used on a range.

What is the utility of a fully automatic weapon?

I guess the answer is in the increased rate of rounds per minute fired. But the idea of asking what is the social utility is foreign to my libertarian part and generally anathema to the right way of thinking. If it has no social utility at all, but I want it (and it does no one harm in my hands), I should be able to get it. And I can, but they are a little pricey now because there are only 70k and more than that are desired.
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