...and Other Gun Facts For The Newly Uninformed
For those of you who are new to the public debate about All Things Guns that have sprung up since the Parkland, FL tragedy, this brief primer is for you whether you are a mommy, daddy, guardian or teacher of school-age children. Most of all, if you are a politician or reporter, this one has your name on it.
A basic Google search for "guns" returns 299,000,000 results in 0.52 seconds. So why another gun article? The cacophony of stultifying idiocy polluting media outlets via the Evening News, talk radio "commentary", wasting untold newsprint and bandwidth demands it. Never has the old saw, "He only knows enough to be dangerous" been more evident than in the blatherings of those who have swallowed whole the mistruths, half-truths and outright lies on everything from "firearm terminology" to the "gun show loophole." Indeed, many of the spouting pundits hosing audiences with their indubitable certitude are motivated by an evil political agenda that has been marinated in decades of gun grabbing propaganda, fear mongering elitism. And worse. (See MSDNC's "Morning Joe")
Sadly, strewing scary stuff stifles any rational discussion about guns. Anti-gun groups are using "NRA!" as the new pejorative replacing "RACIST!" as their trump card to shut down dangerously productive conversations. Claiming "we need a public debate about guns" really means "STFU and do it my way!"
To navigate this swamp of polluted palaver, here are just a few of the 372 Unadulterated Truths you can memorize and deploy in next big argument at work or Chuck E. Cheese. They are also suitable to Cut 'N Paste or carve into other suitable persuasive materials for more formal situations.
Note: the following assumes the Reader knows the absolute minimum about guns, i.e., they go BANG! propelling a projectile at Warp speed toward whatever lies immediately ahead. This is true of rifles, pistols, and shotguns-- also cannons, bazookas, mortars, RPG's and more other weapons of destruction,"mass" or otherwise.
Let's get started
First, despite the MSM and members of the phylum "moron" dedication to mislead you, there is no such thing as "gun violence". "Gun violence" is code from the Aggressively Ignorant for "It's not my fault; the gun did it." As an inanimate object, any firearm is no more intelligent or self-actuating than a rock (an early ancestor). All firearms require some level of participation from a human to function. This phase of the interface is loosely described as "human intelligence", is where problems begin.
Next, for purposes of accuracy and sanity, you must understand once and for all time, the indelible, incontrovertible difference between "Automatic" and "Semi-Automatic" firearms. Simply put "automatic" defining function of the "machine gun" like the one that did in Sean Connery in "The Untouchables". One pull of the trigger keeps the weapon firing until the trigger is released or ammo runs out. "Semi-automatic" describes those weapons that require one trigger pull for each "BANG!". Period. This is all you need to know at this level. Further details will either confuse you or turn you into an expert who embarrasses their friends at parties by winning all the arguments. Refusal or inability to comprehend this simple distinction qualifies you to be a Network TV News Reporter where ignoring such technicalities are encouraged in order to keep the viewer petrified and even more ignorant than the reporter.
Contrary to Media's Favorite Myth, fully automatic weapons ("machine guns") are not illegal unless acquired outside NFA requirements and regulations. With a Federal Class III Special Occupational Tax license application, fingerprints, pictures, license fee ($200) and hacking through additional red tape, you may (after a typical 10-12 month "processing" period) receive the government's Permission Slip to take delivery of your very own "machine gun". If this makes your leg tingle, be advised there are a mountain of other regulations imposed on the new Owner. If you live in one of the States that specifically prohibit Class III weapon ownership (CA, IL, NY, NJ, CT, RI, DE, IO, WA, DC, HI), you'll have to move. Be sure to check your Sate's peculiar restrictions). Oh - FYI: right this minute, a Colt M16A1 like mine is currently available for $33,000. (Less expensive makes/models are also available). Bottom Line Media Mythbuster: Full auto firearm ownership is legal in the majority of these here United States.
Finally, there is no also such thing as "the gun show loophole". Like the Loch Ness monster, Bigfoot and Ethical Politicians, it is just more liberal media effluvium. Depending on the archaic, freedom-snuffing status of laws in your state or gulag, there are two ways to purchase a firearm at a gun show: through an FF L licensed dealer or a private citizen walking his Iver Johnson. The dealer will require you to complete the BATFE form 4473 which requires your answers to several mildly intrusive personal history questions, show some state-approved picture ID and some am accepted medium of exchange (FRNs, MC/VISA or similar wampum). He will then call your info into the NICS System. Assuming you are not a convicted felon or similarly disqualifying lowlife, you will eventually be "approved" and off you go with your newly acquired shootin' iron. The Private Citizen transaction is infinitely easier inasmuch as it is a simple negotiated exchange of Personal Property: haggle the price with the seller, agree, pay, leave. State laws vary, but even in the most lenient, it's a damn good idea for Buyer and Seller to show each other some form of picture ID. Be thoroughly familiar with State and Local laws. The world is full of (insert profane noun here) and no principled person wants to be party to a transaction that could have dire consequences of any form. While there is no "gun show loophole", there are always ways, knowingly or not, to circumvent any law. Unless you'd like a tiny room with metal doors, lousy view and hangin' out for a few years with some dude named "No Ky", best to be intimately familiar with them instead of him.
There is a boatload of scary fairytales about guns floating around - usually on TV around 6p and, even worse, 24/7 on Social Media. Do your homework. Avoid becoming another brain-dead zombie, spouting clichéd, erroneous and terminal dumbness. Like free speech, guns are as beneficial as they can be dangerous. Be certain Intelligence is engaged before shooting mouth off. The Parkland shooting has released a frenzy of adrenaline-fired, fact-challenged, politically distorted, Freedom-killing propaganda.
Know the truth – it just might keep us free.