I’m going to preface this by saying that I don’t own a firearm, I have no desire to own one, and I’m not an NRA-nutjob or a far-left liberal tree-hugger. I’m just a guy who hates government regulations and sits in the middle of the political spectrum.
Deerfield, IL recently passed an ordinance banning assault weapons in the suburb, with a steep daily fine for all residents who don’t get rid of their assault weapons.
Well, first off… What’s an “assault weapon”? A fully automatic weapon? Fully automatic weapons are already illegal. The ordinance would, therefore, do precisely nothing because law-abiding citizens are already not possessing fully-automatic weapons.
A semi-automatic weapon? A semi-automatic weapon is one that you fire ONE round per every one squeeze of the trigger and includes everything from pistols to AR-platform weapons to the really old M1 Garand sitting in some old WW2 vet’s basement to even a “traditional” style Remmington hunting rifle. Unless you have a revolver, and old-school cowboy’s double-barrel shotgun, or a pump shotgun, chances are your weapon is semi-automatic.
But what makes something an assault weapon? The fact that a weapon based on the AR-platform is black and “military-looking” and scary when looked at by someone ignorant of how guns function? It functions completely identically to many standard wooden-looking hunting rifles.
One squeeze of the trigger fires one round from the chamber, and the “automatic” aspect is in the fact that the gun automatically ejects and reloads the chamber without pulling a lever like on a bolt-action weapon.
There is absolutely no meaningful definition in place for what constitutes an “assault weapon”, and anyone who wants to pass legislation related to them is playing politics without looking at the implications of passing the law or doing research.
I’m not one of those NRA guys who thinks any attempt to research the causes of gun violence or gun-related deaths will mean guns are being taken away, and while I disagree with the concept of excessive government regulations in general, I’m not opposed to the idea of a law-abiding citizen having background checks or taking a test to demonstrate competency when it comes to owning and handling a gun… Hell, we do that with cars, for Pete’s sake, and those are things not designed as weapons. I am opposed to knee-jerk political actions like banning an “assault weapon” when the politicians doing it don’t even know what an assault weapon is, because passing a law on something you don’t understand creates far more severe results than you’d expect. But I don’t suppose you thought of that, did you, politicians?