Thursday, December 20, 2007

Mitt Romney and guns

It seems to come down to that same tired old argument that if it looks "mean" it is bad and we should ban it.

Often it is a matter of context. Like that scene in the original "Men in Black" when Will Smith was being evaluated at the firing range with the other candidates. They all start shooting at targets except for Will who scans the scene and finally shoots a silhouette of a little girl. His reason is the books she was carrying were far too advanced for a girl her age and what was she doing out so late in such a bad neighborhood? She must have been up to no good.

The assault weapons ban did nothing but ban guns that contained things that looked mean and bad and war like. All legal guns since the 1940s have been single shot. You pull the trigger and a bullet is fired. You want to fire another bullet, you pull the trigger again. Regardless of how they look nearly all civilian rifles still operate just that way. You need a special government permit to own a true, fully automatic rifle. When a criminal uses a fully automatic rifle during the commission of a crime (which is rare in and of its self) it is typically an illegally modified weapon. Again, not something a criminal is going to care about anyway. So banning lawful citizens from owning “mean” looking rifles is nothing but a political feel good gesture that accomplishes nothing constructive.

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