On The Issue of Guns


Federal Assault Weapons Ban (1994–2004):
Banned semiautomatics that looked like assault weapons and large capacity ammunition feeding devices. The law expired in 2004.

There were multiple attempts to renew the ban, but none succeeded.

The Biden administration is attempting to put forth another ban. Chances are it also will not succeed.

More (from Wikipedia) …

A study by Mark Gius, professor of economics at Quinnipiac University, studied the law’s impact on public mass shootings. Gius defined this subset of mass shootings as those “occurring in a relatively public place, targeted random victims, were not otherwise related to a crime (a robbery or act of terrorism), and that involved four or more victim fatalities.”

His study* revealed that “both state and federal assault weapons bans have statistically significant and negative effects on mass shooting fatalities but that only the federal assault weapons ban had a negative effect on mass shooting injuries. This study is one of the first studies that looks solely at the effects of assault weapons bans on public mass shootings.”


Meanwhile, “Gun background checks soar to record in March following mass shootings and gun-control bills.”

Further reading:

Mass shootings in the United States
What Does Background Check Show (Note: Nothing on mental health)
What Is Gun Control: Everything You Need to Know

25 thoughts on “On The Issue of Guns

  1. Thank you, Nan: it is good to have stats from the US confirming what we see elsewhere, related to weapons bans. Good data helps make better policy. Thank you for sharing this data, and for being here for us all,
    Stay safe,

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Excellent hard data to support what should have happened even before Sandy Hook in Dec. 2012. Hell, I’d say it had to happen even after August 1966 at the University of Texas tower and Charles Whitman.

    An Austin Police Officer who was there on the campus trying to quickly deduce WHO was shooting, armed and dangerous and who was not—i.e. Friend or Foe decisions in 1-2 seconds by law-enforcement—later became an activist for gun-control laws and helped start a nationwide overhaul of Police Departments tactical training complimented by SWAT resources. That Officer told all the Press that all the many civilian rifles and weapons firing trying to “help” actually impeded significantly law-enforcement’s ability to quickly assess the chaos and Fog of War, to organize a plan of action against Whitman, and do all of it with a clear concise M.O. as “one unit” rather than so many random “helpers” doing their own fight. He stated that many, MANY minutes were lost due to well-intentioned armed civilians that it cost MORE innocent lives! Governor Connally later reported that ‘too many officers were having to take cover from civilian fire up at the sniper.

    But oh well, that was in 1966. How much has changed for the better and safety of small school children today or Asian Spa workers in Georgia, etc, etc, etc, ad nauseum for too many decades? 🤦‍♂️😔

    But hey, at least we still have our Second Amendments rights to bear musket-and-ball front loading weapons with flint and powder, huh!? 😡

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Even the man who developed the assault weapon said toward the end of his life that it was NEVER intended for civilian use, but was designed only for military use. His wife has spoken out against assault weapons numerous times. Those who would continue objecting to a ban on assault weapons lack any form of a conscience … perhaps lack much of a mind at all.

    Liked by 5 people

      • Eugene Stoner, an ex-marine and the rifle’s inventor, never used his AR-15 for sport, kept it for personal defense, or even owned one. His family said he made millions by using his design, but only for military sales.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Ah, now I see. There seems to be some confusion of the terminology here (at least for me). I thought you meant assault rifle as such, wich was invented during the WWII by a german dude called Schmeisser. I did not know there was a specific semi-automatic version for civillian markets of the US military assault rifle.before looking into Eugene Stoner. Thanks for that.

          What remains unclear (at least to me), is what purpose does the civillian have for owning a semi-automatic version of the automatic military version? It is not good for hunting, nor is it especially accurate for target practice. It has no value as a collectible item, other than as a curiosity of how stupid it is to sell such items to civillians and as a military weapon it was obsolete long before it came to market, as it has all the downsides of an actual assault rifle caused for the compromise of having the full automatic function, but it lacks the benefit of the full automatic function. The gun seems like a joke – a very dangerous practical joke even at best.

          Is there a civillian version of a machine gun, that has no full automatic capability?

          Liked by 2 people

        • I share your query about the purpose of a civilian owning such a weapon. Frankly, I don’t see that there is one. They claim they need them for self-defense, but a pistol works just as well and you don’t risk killing the neighbors in the process. Then they say they need them for hunting, but this type of weapon would shred any animal shot with it. It is a power thing, I think. Men who feel they are lacking in other areas need the biggest, most powerful weapons they can buy in order to feel like men. Sadly, in my book, it only makes them look like fools … dangerous fools.

          Liked by 1 person

        • There’s just no reason for anyone – non-military, that is – to own an assault rifle and even less reason for someone with mental issues, e.g., the Newtown & Colorado movie theater shootings. I’m sure the founding fathers weren’t thinking we’d be handing out heavy artillery hardware to every idiot that wants one. But, thanks to the gun manufacturers and the NRA that’s seems to be where we are.

          Liked by 2 people

        • I think the Founding Fathers would be horrified to see how the 2nd Amendment has been abused. Back in their day, ‘arms’ were muskets, not AR-15s! They could not even have imagined the invention of such killing machines, else they would not have written the 2nd Amendment. Now, though, it is next to impossible to separate the fools from their guns for they claim it’s their “constitutional right” or even their “god-given right” … both are equally wrong. The NRA may be on its way down the tubes, but no doubt they will make a comeback or another group will replace them. There are those in this nation who put their love of guns ahead of their own children … I have written of them a few times and it always leaves me feeling so disgusted.

          Liked by 2 people

        • I would extend that argument to why we need soldiers to be so well armed? Maybe if we went back to the “manly” (/sarc) arts of war, with our political leaders leading the charge, war would be less common? If George W Bush and Barrack Obama had had to parachute into Yemen or Iraq with a knife rather than snidely “joking” about cruise missiles controlled from an air conditioned bunker in Arizona, maybe a few wedding parties would still be alive?

          Liked by 2 people

    • As Einstein worried about nuclear power, we could use it for good or we could use it for destruction. He was afraid humanity would use it for the latter and, of course, we did. Shocker.

      Same with guns except this will NEVER change until people get their collective heads out of their asses and ban the sale of military-type weaponry and ammo altogether from the general public. And, given their average Americans apathy – especially about politics – we will all just have to get used to knowing that when we or our loved ones leave the house, we may or may not return home alive.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes, Einstein was right as we now know, and will likely see again. I fear the people in this country will never get their collective heads out of their asses … time and time again people are mowed down by these assault weapons, and all we hear from the gun advocates is “now is not the time to talk about gun control”. Sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Stats should not be necessary. Guns, whether in good guys hand or bad guys hands, are anti-life. Anyone caught owning or using a gun should be jailed without trial for 5 years. Then if they insist on still wanting to own or use a gun, they should be put in a shooting gallery with their peers. Then they will know what it is like to be shot at.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Can’t argue against rawgod. Twice in my life, almost 3-times, I had volatile psychotic mental-health patients and one EX-fiancé (going after my then girlfriend) pull weapons on me—the ex fiancé actually put his Glock pistol to my temple on my head—and all 2-3 times I talked the hyper-violent gunmen out of their weapons and walked away just fine.

      My point is that when you present a psychotically SNAPPED gunman with no obvious threat to him, your chances of deescalating the entire situation is 10-20 times better than if you approach him WITH a weapon, even your weapon pointed down with finger OFF trigger! The latter has a very clear message to the psychotic gunman. The former has an even better message to him. And duh…

      …I had no weapon, concealed or obvious, and not a single person was shot at. Not saying that that happens every single time, BUT…

      it DAYUM SURE tells the mentally-ill gunman that I am not there to eliminate him! Period.


      • Excellent example. PT. And thèse days it is not just one weapon facing someone, but dozens. And all it takes is one trigger-happy fool, and all the guns are blazing. Remember Kent State. Three hundred national guards firing because one asshole thought he saw a gun.

        Liked by 2 people

    • rawgod …

      I adamantly disagree! There are thousands and thousands of sensible and safe gun-owners who use them for personal enjoyment (hunting, target shooting, collecting). The fact that you –or others– don’t find those reasons acceptable is not the issue.

      What IS the issue is the INDIVIDUAL who owns/uses the gun. I don’t know about Canada, but the U.S. fails miserably in their background checks. If you read the article on this, you’ll see that most of the screening has nothing to do with the mental health/temperament of the applicant. Yet again and again in after-the-fact interviews with family members, they confirm the individual had mental and/or social issues.

      Further, there is no delineation on the type of gun being purchased — pistol or rifle. Certainly both can kill, but we know that the favored weapon in mass killings is the assault rifle.

      As with many things in life, extreme viewpoints aren’t always the most sensible ones.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think you missed my point, but no biggie. I’m just saying all guns are dangerous. No matter how you legislate their use, or try to control who owns them, the very existence of a gun is dangerous to those around it. The existence of an AR-15 is a threat to more than one person at a time. In Canada just last week we had two mass stabbings. The perpetrators had to be up close and personal to do their dirty work. Only 1 person died but a dozen were injured. I am not condoning the violent use of knives. But had those perpetrators had access to guns, pistols or automatic weapons, more people would have been injured, more people would undoubtedly have been killed. Guns are not necessary to life, we can live without them. If you desperately need to go hunting, use a bow, or a single shot gun. Anything that holds more than 1 bullet is beyond the scope of necessary.
        It would be my personal preference guns had never been invented. But since they have been, make them hard as possible to operate.


  5. I think the US constitution does not support the freedom of any idiot to buy an assault weapon. The law was deviced during an age that a gun had been and was expected to be for generations a muzzle loading musket, not a revolver, a self loading, not to mention automatics. Do not get me wrong. The fling lock musket is a deadly device. A shot per minute in skilled hands is not even a fast rate of fire and accuracy up to 100m depending on the shooter. But in all honesty, it is not a weapon, that induces some random owner to try to create a massacre at a mall or in a school.

    Clearly the constitutional amendmend was about controlling the ownership of muskets as dangerous military weapons. If they were not considered dangerous, no law would have been required at all. The law also dictates, that the owner has to belong to a well organized militia – wich contemporarily meant something akin to the National Guard loyal to the people, the government and the constitution of the US (instead of the king of England).

    Here in Finland we have more guns per capita than you in the US. They are well regulated to purposes of hunting, volunteer military reservists, and collectors. (If you’d apply for a permit for self defence weapon, you’d be sent to psychiatric evaluation.) Everybody seems quite happy, exept criminals who have harder time to get their hands on one. Even so, some regrettable mass shootings have taken place even here.

    From the outside the US problem seems like deriving from the combination of large social gap (wich creates crime), poorly trained police force (mistrust in police) and easy access to guns. Reducing the latter might help, but it does not solve the entire problem.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Well-spoken, rautakyy. I have been saying the same thing for years, reduce wealth inequity (I just called it poverty) and crime will 90% disappear. If everyone has what they need, there will be less desire to try to take what one wants. Capitalism sucks.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The transition from the 2nd amendment “militia” to the unrestricted use & right to own guns was a masterful bait & switch from the gun manufacturers lobbyies, made much easier due to the stupidity and gullible nature of the US public.

      Liked by 2 people

    • The 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was/is about maintaining a well-regulated militia. The founders believed it was important to protect CITIZENS from either an invasive force or a despotic government. They could never have envisioned guns such as we have today or manufacturing guns at millions a month. This was hijacked by the NRA/Gun Lobby which focused more on the second half “the right to bear arms shall not be infringed” which, phrased this way, sounds like a categorical imperative. It was never meant to be this way.

      Unfortunately we do not live in a country where the electorate is any more than just passively interested in what our leaders are doing or they’d get off their lazy asses and do something. In fact, if everyone that wanted to change the guns laws were to just CALL their elected officials – a simple phone call – we would have the gun laws changed overnight. It’s called “waking the sleeping giant.” Unfortunately I’m afraid this giant isn’t sleeping, he’s dead.


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