Elementary Information About Guns For The Currently Uninformed
For those of you new to the public debate about All Things Guns that perpetually appear after every tragedy involving firearms, this Uber Primer was written primarily for your edification, whether you are a mommy, daddy, guardian or teacher of school-age children. But most of all, if you are the typical (liberal) politician or reporter for the mainstream media, this one has your name all over it. All you have to do is pry open your mind and read...
A basic Google search for "guns" returns 299,000,000 results in 0.52 seconds. So why another gun article? Simple - because the deafening cacophony of stultifying idiocy that is suffocating the public airwaves via the Evening News, talk radio "commentary", wasted gallons of newsprint and bandwidth cries out for it. Never has the old saw, "He knows just enough to be dangerous" never been more evident than in the current blitherings and spoutings of those who have swallowed whole the mistruths, half-truths and outright lies of bovine excrement on everything from "firearm function" to the "hidden history of the Second Amendment." Granted, many of the spouting pundits hosing audiences with their pronouncements are motivated by an evil political agenda that has been marinated in decades of gun grabbing, fear mongering elitism. And worse. (See MSDNC's "Morning Joe" for daily proof.)
Sadly, the public strewing of scary stuff about guns stifles most any rational discussion or debate. Anti-gun groups are using "NRA" as a pejorative to replace "RACIST!" as their main 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 3 or 4 of the 372 Unadulterated Truths you cannot only memorize for your personal edification in time for that next big argument at work or at Chuck E. Cheese but also Cut 'N Paste or carve into the business end of a baseball bat for similar situations.
Note: this piece assumes you know at least the absolute minimum about guns: they go BANG! and propel a lead projectile at remarkable speed toward whatever lies immediately ahead. This is true of rifles, pistols, and shotguns-- also cannons, bazookas, mortars, RPG's and more exotic weapons of destruction,"mass" or otherwise.
Let's get started.
First, despite the MSM's and members of the phylum "moron", dedication to mislead you, there is no such thing as "gun violence". "Gun violence" is a code from the Aggressively Ignorant for "It's not my fault; the gun did it." As an inanimate object, it 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 with what is loosely described as "human intelligence" is where problems always 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". Simply put: "automatic" defines "machine gun" like the one that did in Sean Connery in "The Untouchables". One pull of the trigger will keep the weapon firing until the trigger is released or ammo runs out. "Semi-automatic" describes those weapons that require a 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. The refusal or inability to comprehend this simple distinction qualifies you to be a Network TV News Reporter where such technicalities are studiously ignored in order to keep the viewer petrified and even more ignorant than the reporter.
Third, fully automatic weapons ("machine guns") are not illegal unless acquired outside the very strict requirements and regulations of the Law. With a Federal Class 3 Special Occupational Tax license application, fingerprints, picture, license fee ($200) a few other nuances can eventually (10-12 month waiting period) receive the government's Permission Slip to purchase your very own machine gun. If this is attractive to you, be advised there are a mountain of regs imposed on the new Owner. Oh – and an M16 (the Big Boy's AR15) in decent shape starts around $15,000.
Finally, there is no such thing as a "the gun show loophole". Like the Loch Ness monster, Bigfoot or Ethical Politician, it is more effluvium. Depending on the archaic, freedom-snuffing status of the 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's form 4473 which requires answers to many intrusive personal history questions, show some state-approved picture ID (not your Chuck E. Cheese club card) and some approved medium of exchange (FRNs, MC/VISA or similar wampum). He will call your info into the NICS system. Assuming you are not a convicted felon or have led a similarly disqualifying life, you will eventually be "approved" and off you go with your newly acquired shootin' iron.
The Private Citizen transaction is infinitely better, efficient and moral inasmuch as it is a simple 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 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 are no "gun show loopholes", there are ways, knowingly or not, that circumvent the law. Unless you like tiny rooms with metal doors and hangin' for a few years with some dude named "Bubba", best to be intimately familiar with them instead of him.
There is a boatload of 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, inaccurate terminal dumbness. Like free speech, guns are as useful as they are dangerous. Be certain Intelligence is engaged before shooting mouth off. Most any crime with a firearm releases a predictable frenzy of adrenaline-fired, fact-challenged, politically distorted propaganda. Know the truth – it just might keep us free.
Watch this space for the next installment of the firearms uber primer as we tackle the balance of the 362 other fallacies, misunderstandings, and outright lies that are littering the landscape of intelligent discussion about guns.