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Is their any valid reason for a pedestrian citizen of the United States to own an automatic weapon?
Valid according to whom? As long as they're in compliance with all State and Federal laws, they're fine.
Personally, I don't think there's any reason for a private citizen to have anything more than a shotgun or perhaps a hunting rifle, but that's just my opinion.
Validity is the question. I am looking for a good argument for or against...
If you're looking for discussion on the topic, I'd advise re-posting this as a forum post, so there is no character limit.
As far as an answer, "valid" is too subjective a term for one answer. What's valid to me, may not be to someone else.
First you must define automatic. Do you mean semi-automatic or do you mean fully automatic?
I see no reason why they should not.
A properly trained citizen with a semi-automatic weapon is more than capable of effectively defending themselves and their homes. And in many situations, controlled, accurate fire is going to be more effective than fully automatic fire would be.
One possible argument to the contrary would be for situations where someone is far from authorities and is faced with the legitimate possibility of encountering an above average threat. Two such possible scenarios would be being out on the ocean in a boat or living in a rural area near a drug corridor. Even so, an automatic weapon is only effective with adequate training and is most effective as an element of a larger squad.
The photo shows a patrol boat used in Texas along the Rio Grande. The machineguns shown are dual mounted M240s (each boat has 6 total). Photo credit: Doug Miller/KHOU 11 News. http://www.khou.com/news/Heavily-armed- … 60375.html
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