What is the difference between a Tommy Gun and a high capacity AR

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  1. Credence2 profile image79
    Credence2posted 10 years ago

    Somewhere within the tapestry of recent history a determination was made that fully automatic sub machine guns like the Thompson could not be obtained by the private citizen for self defense. These were the weapons of choice for mobsters of the twenties and for time, beyond. Conservatives have explained to me that there is a distinct difference between weapons for personal self defense and military ordinance. So who drew the line and decided which was which? Most conservatives had indicated that they had no desire to make military ordinance available to the general public.

    But is there really a distinction between semi-automatics with magazines holding up to a 100 rounds and a Tommy gun?

    Conservatives say that they need to have some ability to defend themselves against an oppressive government if the need arose. But, how do you fight a government that has full use and possession of military ordinance, while you do not? So where is the 'line' drawn? From the perspective of the Right, why should the 'right to bear arms' have any restraints?

    We do all agree that rocket launchers, howitzers and cluster bombs are best left only in the hands of the military, or do we?

    1. SomewayOuttaHere profile image60
      SomewayOuttaHereposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      wow!  what the heck is going on in the US? for such a question....

      i have a few questions:
      ....define government
      why on earth would a private citizen need a rocket launcher or cluster bomb?
      who would be in the line of fire?
      my my my......
      i guess i should maybe think twice about heading across the border for a friendly visit to spend my money, right?
      holy shite!

    2. Borsia profile image39
      Borsiaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      To start with the original question “Tommy Gun” and “AR” are specific guns; the Thompson submachine gun and the AR-15 (a semi-auto version of the M-16).
      The problem with arguing using terms like “Assault Gun” when talking about gun control is that the public doesn’t know what they are talking about. As an example under the “assault gun ban” my Mini-14 was completely legal and unrestricted, yet it fires the same .223 bullet and has various magazines holding between 10-40 rounds and firing just as fast as an AR-15. Likewise an SDK is more or less an AK-47 (virtually every time the media says someone is armed with an AK it is actually an SDK.
      So rather than basing laws on what a gun looks like discus how they work.
      In hand guns you have 3 basic types; revolvers, semi-auto (pistols) and single shot.
      Revolvers, for the most part, hold 6 bullets in a cylinder some fire with just the pull of the trigger (double action) others require that you pull back the hammer before each shot (single action).
      Pistols hold 7-15 bullets in a stacked magazine located in the handle and either fire from simply pulling the trigger (double action) or require that you pull back the hammer for the first shot (single action).
      In rifles you have you have more options for actions single, double, pump, semi-auto and full auto.
      Full auto, machine guns, and/or true assault guns (an assault gun can be switched between semi and full automatic) are legal in all states but require permits at state, county and city levels along with a 1 time Federal tax of $200. However states vary wildly when it comes to getting those permits. In CA you will never get permits unless you are in the movie business while in many of the other states they are quite east to get. The same thing is true of canons, which you can have in most states if they are muzzle loaded and many if they are breech loaded.
      So the real arguments should be reduced to magazine capacity and conceal ability.
      The magazine capacity is really rather moot since magazines can be swapped in as little as 2 seconds if you know what you are doing maybe 5 if you haven’t practiced.
      When the last round is fired the action locks in the open state. You push a button next to the trigger and the empty magazine is expelled, shove in the full magazine and hit a release to close the action. The gun is then ready to go when you pull the trigger.
      So do civilians need semi-auto guns?
      Well the difference is speed and accuracy and in both sports and defense those things are very important. I wouldn’t want to face multiple assailants with a revolver, or anything other than a semi-auto for that matter.
      As for a machine gun being the better choice for killing it’s a mixed bag. You send more bullets down range but with terrible accuracy for the most part. This means that a killer is more likely to run out of bullets before hitting as many victims. But what really makes a difference is whether their targets are shooting back.

      In Iraq the military fires roughly 150,000 bullets for each kill while a sniper averages 1.3.

      1. Credence2 profile image79
        Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Hello, Borsia, hope that your new year meets all expectations, wherever you are. Obviously, you know a great deal about firearms. You point that full auto can be mesy and inaccurate is appreciated.

        But what is this talk about not being troubled by teachers and adminstrators strapping shooting irons to their hips during school sessions? If that is the case then armed people could be a part of any public place, libraries, restaurants, whatever. When I take this to a likely scenario, we have a heavily armed camp, not that much different from the 'old west', at least the one we know from popular culture.

  2. profile image0
    JaxsonRaineposted 10 years ago

    Automatic rifles are not illegal. They are simply classified as Class 3 firearms. You can buy one with a background check and paying a $200 fee(plus the cost of the gun).

    http://www.gunsamerica.com/980243539/C_ … NE_GUN.htm

    That being said, fully-automatic rifles are a very poor choice of weapon for self defense, also for criminals to use. They are too difficult to use accurately, you waste too much ammo and spend more time reloading. The recoil can knock an inexperienced, even an experienced person on their behind, and will cause the gun to rise. If someone tried to use one for a mass shooting, they would probably hit many fewer people than if they used a semi-automatic.

    And yes, there is a difference between an automatic tommy gun and a semi-automatic rifle. One is automatic, while the other isn't. 100 round magazines are terribly unreliable, even an AR-15 style rifle with a standard magazine(30 rounds is standard) tends to be unreliable unless you do thorough ammunition testing and cleaning/maintenance.

    The right to bear arms shouldn't have restraints. That's why the phrase is 'the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.' At the time of the revolution, many or most of the cannons that we fought with were, you guessed it, privately owned. Citizens, just your everyday Joes, had full access to military weapons and ordinance. Our founders had no problem with that at all.

    1. Xenonlit profile image61
      Xenonlitposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I don't know what bunch of drunks made that crap up. There will be restraints or else. killing 20 helpless children and six teachers is the last straw. The NRA needs to be put out of business and automatic weapons plusover sized ammo clips need to be banned. the Constitution gave you NONE of those rights, so that lying has to stop, too.

      1. profile image0
        JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Well-reasoned response. Want to try again with some facts?

        The 2A guarantees the right to keep and bear arms. The definition for arms at the time was weapons of offense or armor of defense. Shall not be infringed.

        And what is your concern with automatic weapons? Can you name a single instance of a murder with an automatic weapon off the top of your head?

        1. snakeslane profile image82
          snakeslaneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Pretty cold-hearted response, completely ignoring references to the raw recent tragedy, but I guess (and I am guessing) that is what this post is all about. Must never respond with one's heart, how illogical and emotional. These gun threads are so crass. Brutal...

          1. profile image0
            JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            This isn't a discussion about emotional responses to any particular shooting. It's a discussion about the difference between an automatic and a semi-automatic gun.

            Yes, arguing emotion has no place in a discussion about facts. That's not cold, it's just logical. The two are not mutually exclusive.

            1. Credence2 profile image79
              Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Jaxson, the question I have is why ban one and not the other? I am talking about machine guns Uzis and Thompsons for example.Weapons that continue firing as long as the trigger is depressed or runs out of ammo.

              1. profile image0
                JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                None of them are banned, Credence2. Did you read my first reply?

                'Assault rifles' generally isn't used to refer to automatic rifles... mostly because nobody ever commits mass-murders with them. Instead, someone with a semi-automatic handgun or rifle goes shooting, and the media starts buzzing about 'assault rifles'.

                1. Credence2 profile image79
                  Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

                  Yes, I may have read it, but in spite of your expertise, excuse me if I remain incredulous. So, you are saying that I can go out and buy a machine gun and it is perfectly legal, if so why settle for semi-auto when you can have the whole deal with automatic? Would not a fully automatic weapon be a more efficient killing device than a semi in the school shootings?

                  None of the amendments are absolute, not the first and most probably not the second either. You sound satisfied to allow your neighbor to possess military ordinance for his own use that Bush badgered  Saddam Hussein about back in 2003.

                  1. profile image0
                    JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                    Yes, you can. You just have to get your 'stamp' for the weapon, which can take some time(government is slow).


                    Tax and registration, that's it,

                    No, a fully automatic weapon is not more efficient. Burst fire... maybe with training. Full auto? No. Too hard to aim, too much recoil, almost instant empty mag. Also, there is the cost factor, $20,000 - $50,000 is nothing to sneeze at.

          2. Barefootfae profile image61
            Barefootfaeposted 10 years agoin reply to this


        2. Borsia profile image39
          Borsiaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Good point! Equally, show me a case of someone with a carry permit committing a crime or a shooting during any argument.
          I don't see anything cold hearted about the truth.
          I do see real problems with using tragedies to promote agendas that wouldn't make a difference.
          I am a bit surprised that people are so dismissive toward having qualified, trained teachers having secure guns to protect their students.
          I had several teachers who were gun enthusiasts including my 4th grade teacher who, heaven forbid, brought in antique guns from her collection for show & tell to boost our interest in history. And my Junior year high school teacher, a WWII fighter pilot, who brought in examples of guns from different WWII armies in his Polisci class to illustrate the different levels of industrial quality as the war progressed.
          I had several other teachers and staff who I would trust completely to be armed. Of course the guns could be locked in safe boxes rather than actually carried, though neither would be a problem.

          1. Credence2 profile image79
            Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Borsia, if the weapons were locked in safe boxes, you could not access them in an emergency in time. And you know,  I think can think of many vigilante types that I would not trust with a pea shooter.

            In my article on the subject, I said the public simply wont tolerate these  sorts of tragedies on a continuing basis.. No one is advocating taking everybody's gun, but there is going to be some kind of action taken to make what happened last December 14, less likely to happen again.

            1. Borsia profile image39
              Borsiaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Credence; It would take about 30 seconds for the teacher to open the box bolted under their desk. There are even some fancy ones that open for someone wearing a special ring without any need for a key or combination. Are you telling me that none of the teachers had 30 seconds to respond?

              The “no time” argument has been used in the past, with obvious flaws, many times before. The wife of a man killer in an office shooting was hauled out time after time with the claim that it wouldn't have mattered if he had been armed. But he had time to crawl under his desk and hide while the gunman went to another office and wasn't shot until the gunman returned minutes later, making such a claim ridiculous.
              A holstered gun is faster, available in seconds, but I don't support teachers carrying a gun this way simply because there is a chance of a student grabbing it when the teacher is off guard.  But I wouldn't have any problem with office staff carrying in holsters.

              I also had teachers who I wouldn't trust with a butter knife. There are a fair number of police that I don't trust and a huge number of CIA that I really don't trust. There are virtually no politicians that I would, or do, trust.

              Nobody is saying that all teachers should be armed. But that doesn't mean that some, who pass rigid screening and training, shouldn't be allowed to be armed.

              I'm an NRA member and an ILA (the political action arm of the NRA) member. Still I favor some gun control, like banning Mac 10 style guns or at least limiting them. Stiffer prison sentencing for anyone using a firearm in a crime, along with no parole for such criminals. Rejecting all parole for any criminal found to be in possession of any gun.
              I would like to see the entire parole system throw out and see “truth in sentencing” where the time given is the time served.

              I would like to see a better system for doing background checks than we have now. Providing that it isn't used as a method to try and ban guns or made unreasonably hard to pass.

              I would like to see gun safety taught in every school, like it was when I was a kid.
              Even if there is no gun in their house and their parents are opposed to guns every child should know the basics. When I was in the 7th grade the police came to our class and did 1 hour on gun safety.
              I would point out that gun accidents are close to an all time low despite the raise in population and the increase in the shear numbers of guns.

              Anyone buying a gun should absolutely have to take a class in gun safety or pass a written exam. The NRA offers free classes for gun safety, we have for over 100 years, with 50,000 instructors giving lessons to 750,000 students every year.

              But adding more laws to the thousands that we already have will do nothing since the existing laws are largely unenforced and because only law abiding citizens follow laws.

    2. Quilligrapher profile image76
      Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Good Evening Jaxson.

      To the contrary, the Second Amendment should have constraints. Although you are correct when you quote the Constitution saying “the right to bear arms shall not be infringed.” However, the problems of the founding fathers, colonial access to firearms, and the Second Amendment are distracting straw men when we are discussing the need to restrict the sale of guns in today’s society. The protection contained in the Second Amendment is not a valid reason to oppose measured steps to reduce, but not eliminate, society’s access to machines designed and sold for mass killing.

      At the time of its ratification, the Constitution protected the institution of slavery in Article IV Section 2. The opposition to slavery from a huge segment of colonial society could not overcome the influence of a powerful special interest group. However, a protection written into the Constitution is not, in and of itself, a valid reason for opposing what is right and just for the entire nation. In 1865, when the special interest block could no longer obstruct what was clearly the best direction for our Republic, the people altered the Constitution to fulfill the government’s mandate to insure order, freedom, and equality.

      The Second Amendment is not a valid argument against reasonable restrictions on gun sales in today's society.

  3. innersmiff profile image67
    innersmiffposted 10 years ago

    We don't agree. If only average citizens across the world had access to howitzers - they might even stand a chance against the American Empire.

  4. profile image0
    JaxsonRaineposted 10 years ago

    Do you at least understand the difference between a Tommy Gun and a semi-automatic rifle now? Or were you not actually looking for that information?

  5. Paul Wingert profile image61
    Paul Wingertposted 10 years ago

    You need to re-read the 2nd amendment. The whole thing! $200 fee and a background check to get a machine gun?! Only if it was that easy!

    1. profile image0
      JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Are you responding to me?

      Because if so...

      1 - Then yes. I even posted a link for verification. If Wikipedia isn't good enough, how about the ATF?

      http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/nationa … a-firearms

      "Basically, there are 2 ways that an individual (who is not prohibited by Federal, State, or local law from receiving or possessing firearms) may legally acquire NFA firearms:

      By transfer after approval by ATF of a registered weapon from its lawful owner residing in the same State as the transferee.
      By obtaining prior approval from ATF to make NFA firearms."

      2 - The 2A doesn't restrict weapons at all. It says the right to have them shall not be infringed.

      1. Dr Billy Kidd profile image93
        Dr Billy Kiddposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        My father's company owned machine guns. I think ya'll are missing the fact that you must first have a FEDERAL FIREARMS PERMIT before you can get a permit to own a machine gun. You cannot get a Fed Firearms Permit out of your home (unless you're lying). You must have a place where you run a legitimate business to buy, sell, or manufacture weapons.

        What is more, every AFTE Agent I have met was totally professional and totally cool. They are not about confiscation. They are about assisting people run businesses in a safe manner. If you don't like that, well let's hear you're story about your dealings with them. Several came to my father's funeral.

        1. Dr Billy Kidd profile image93
          Dr Billy Kiddposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          I just realized that it wasn't the federal law that prevented the sale of machine guns but the California laws. Excuse my error. People in California could not own full automatics because they had to show "just cause." No one's been able to do that except police. On the Federal Level, full autos have not been allow to be imported or manufactured since 1986, so you're gonna hafta buy an old one, pay the  $200 tax. I guess my father's guns were old one's, that as an arms dealer he was allowed to keep ‘em.

          I studied psychology, not guns, so I cannot tell you much more about it. Except the gentleman was wrong about the full auto kicking back and not being used in robberies. A low velocity (sub-sonic) full auto with a silencer (used in special ops) goes click click click almost silently without much kick and is banned for a very good reason.

          1. profile image0
            JaxsonRaineposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Subsonic ammo with a suppressor... full auto?

            If someone has the knowledge and expertise to make that work, then they have the knowledge and expertise to make something else work. That is a very, very difficult setup to get right. You have to have a heavily modified rifle, and figure out a load that will work specifically with your rifle, and use all hand-loaded ammo.

            If you just bought an automatic rifle and put subsonic ammo in it, you probably won't make it to the second round before it malfunctions. Sub-sonic means less pressure in the gun. Suppressor means less pressure. An automatic rifle cycles ammunition using the pressure from each bullet, which is why you're going to have huge failure rates. Not enough pressure for the gun to operate.

            And it's still not silent like you hear in the movies.

            1. Dr Billy Kidd profile image93
              Dr Billy Kiddposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Think--small weapon, short range..


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