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Total number of comments: 3 (since 2013-11-28 16:56:15)

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  • Semi-Automatic firearms are Military Weapons: Lets at least Limit the Magazines
    • Pump action shotguns are illegal in most civilized countries. The US should ban them too.

    • Lots of the mass shooters are extremely smart.

      There's smart, and there's smart. Most are not that smart.

    • Tony, you do raise a good point, which is that many gun control advocates are ignorant about firearms. When they go on the TV or radio and talk about "assault rifles" or the like, it unfortunately doesn't help that particular cause.

      It's true that revolvers are similar in many ways semi-automatic pistols. However, the lethality of a gun of this type is actually a product of two factors: the capacity and the ease of loading. Revolvers simply aren't as easy to load as semi-automatic pistols. (Before you say it: Yes, we could also restrict speed loaders with essentially no legitimate inconvenience.)

      In the last 13 years, as far as I can tell, exactly one perpetrator has brought a revolver to a mass shooting in the US (Nidal Hasan, Fort Hood). He didn't use it. Clearly it's not the weapon of choice.

      Most civilized countries have:

      - An upper limit on magazine size.
      - An upper limit on handgun caliber (.38 is common).
      - A lower limit on handgun barrel length (4" or 120mm are common).
      - No concealed carry.
      - Open carry typically only available to those who can show a genuine need for it.
      - Long lists of prohibited weapons. Typical lists include include fully automatic weapons, semi-automatic rifles, pump-action shotguns, none of which have any realistically legitimate civilian uses. (Repeating rifles are usually okay, by the way; genuine hunters do need to access a follow-up round quickly for humane purposes.)
      - No private sales. (Typically, sale or transfer must be done through a licensed dealer.)
      - Restrictions on how a firearm must be stored in a private property (e.g. no keeping guns loaded when not in use, guns and ammunition to be stored in separate locked containers/cabinets).

      Of course there are usually exceptions for special classes of people, such as collectors, security guards, licensed dealers, etc. All of the above seem perfectly reasonable to me.

      The other thing to look at is licensing. Some suggestions, based on laws in other countries:

      - Frequent renewals and automatic expiry.
      - An exam on proper firearms safety prior to obtaining a licence, much like a driving exam.
      - A ban on owning certain classes of guns (e.g. any handgun at all) unless you've used it for a certain amount of time (six months, perhaps) in the context of a licensed gun club, military/law enforcement service or something similar.

      That last one is one of my favourite proposals, by the way. I can't see a single downside to it.

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