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Opinion: how powerful of a weapon should be legal?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by MatthewVanitas, Dec 31, 2003.

?

How powerful a weapon should the average guy be allowed to buy?

  1. Hunting rifles, target pistol (Aussie rules)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Semi-auto rifle/pistol (US laws)

    13 vote(s)
    5.7%
  3. Full auto .50 or less

    55 vote(s)
    24.2%
  4. Anti-Armor or Anti-Air guns, shells

    10 vote(s)
    4.4%
  5. Shoulder-fired rockets, RPGs

    9 vote(s)
    4.0%
  6. Mortars, light howitzers

    8 vote(s)
    3.5%
  7. Any conventional weapon

    108 vote(s)
    47.6%
  8. Tactical nukes (destroy or contaminate sq mile)

    24 vote(s)
    10.6%
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  1. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Member

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    Been thinking about the extreme edges of firearms related libertarianism. Thought this would be an interesting question:

    What is the most powerful type of weapon that an adult, non-felon, should be able to buy in Joe's Corner Gunshop?

    No special permit, no competency tests, just a cash-and-carry.

    For poll purposes, pick the most powerful category you believe should be available for general public purchase. If you like, explain why or why not certain categories should be permissible.

    Just thought it would be a revealing exercise as to where folks draw the line. -MV
     
  2. Preacherman

    Preacherman Member

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    My rule of thumb is that any citizen should be able to purchase, carry and use any weapon that he/she can operate alone, from a normal shooting position, with accuracy and safety. Also, the weapon should fire non-explosive and/or non-incendiary ammunition.

    That means that a Barrett .50 would be legal, as would just about any rifle. Full-auto weapons would be legal if they fit the same criteria - this includes tripod-mounted weapons, of course. However, anything crew-served, or firing explosive or incendiary ammunition, would be out for civilian ownership.

    (Of course, it also means that I wouldn't qualify to own a S&W .500 Magnum - sure, I can operate it, but accurately??? In rapid fire??? :what: )
     
  3. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    Any portable weapon designed to operate by one person or is crew-served.

    Remember, the intent of the 2A was to protect the right of the people to possess military arms in the event that they were necessary to prevent tyranny.

    In this day and age, up to crew-served machine guns and anti-tank weapons are a must since the military has tanks and APCs. Of course, sub guns and MBRs would be standard fare.

    Special assessment for Artillery, AA guns, AA missiles, rockets, etc. because of complexity. Maybe proof that you were in Artillery or Air Defense (officer maybe) and have competency to rub a battery.

    This should not be a fantasy, it should be reality.
     
  4. Kaylee

    Kaylee Moderator

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    My initial feeling is "anything conventional" -- that's my gut feeling.

    Then I think... "wait a minute... do I REALLY think that having Billy Boy or GW with his finger on the button was actually SAFER than having JoeBob down the street with an A-bomb? Conversely, even if I believe that, would I consider JoeBob (or even Mohammad) being able to buy said thing over the counter an acceptable risk, if it kept my taxes on the south side of 5%, instead of 50%? I'm thinkin' if what it took to keep the politico's hands to themselves was the constant thread of the capital mall turning to glass and ash, it might be worth it. Whether one loses half their life to a nutcase's bomb, or to excessive taxation, the hours are gone all the same.


    On a strict reading of the intent of the 2A though, I'd have to answer something to the effect of "whatever is necessary to retain parity of force between the People and the Armed Forces of the US." Thus anything this side of heavy artillery seems a gimme. Above that, I dunno. Once Delta gets Johnny Rico's power armor though, I'd say a nuke in every closet! :)

    -K
     
  5. Daedalus

    Daedalus Member

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    My rule of thumb is that any citizen should be able to purchase, carry and use any weapon that he/she can operate alone, from a normal shooting position, with accuracy and safety.

    I was going to say "Whatever the basic infantry soldier is trusted with" but I like your way better.

    Rocket propelled grenades OK. Area attack weapons like mortars and field artillery - special license. Tactical nuke I do not really see how you would be able to afford it in the first place, and failing that how it would be used for the purposes of defending the security of a free state.
     
  6. Baba Louie

    Baba Louie Member

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    Any arm(s) that a well regulated militia (being necessary for a free state) requires to maintain that liberty.
    You must be able to deploy said arm with accuracy and be able to provide your own supplies of munitions and maintenance.
     
  7. hillbilly

    hillbilly Member

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    Uh, just something to consider about your question....

    Under current US law and ATF enforcement of those laws, if it uses black powder, and shoots solid shot, it ain't even classified as a firearm.

    So, uh, how about some 24 pounder cannon, anyone?

    Those would be in the power range of anti-shipping weapons.

    Seige mortars, Parrot rifled cannon, all perfectly legal to own right now.

    hillbilly
     
  8. inventory0297

    inventory0297 Member

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    Anything conventional

    But explosives/incendiaries/artillery/heavy mobile armor should require licensing and training. Nuclear weapons ownership should never be allowed by private individuals. This seems to be a reasonable restriction manifestly for the public good, as in the Schenk free speech case.

    I would also like to own an Iowa class battleship if the government could see their way clear, they aren't using 'em.
     
  9. swifter

    swifter Member

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    A citizen should be able to own any weapon the government can.
    Tom:D
     
  10. bfason

    bfason Member

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    Surface-to-air missiles

    Over the counter at Home Depot?

    Are you guys nuts?
     
  11. Combat-wombat

    Combat-wombat Member

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    That's basically what I think. Any standard infantry weapon that is portable. Maybe you'd be able to get a tank or howitzer, but you'd have to jump through alotta hoops.
     
  12. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that citizens should be able to own anything the government does. There is plenty of precedent for that. Privately owned and operated vessels were armed. There were plenty of privately held cannon at the time of the nations founding too. Cost alone would keep most of the types of weapons many of you don't trust your fellow citizens with out of their hands....

    Jeff
     
  13. tcdrennen

    tcdrennen Member

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    I would limit the nukes because of (1) the difficulty in handling/maintenance/storage with safety to the surrounding community and (2) not sure nukes can be justified for defense, or if so that conventional weapons wouldn't be more effective/efficient/cost effective anyway.

    Actually, if we had the same kind of system as the colonials did, each community would organize its own militia and fund larger weapons by subscription, storing them in a community armory/arsenal while personal weapons are kept at home. Since the various state and federal laws prohibiting private paramilitary forces would probably preclude that (until repealed/overturned by some future sane government :scrutiny: ) limiting INDIVIDUAL or HOUSEHOLD arms to personal or crew served man-portable weapons could be justified. tanks and vehicle drawn or carried weapons might be attractive, but the small unit local militia may not be able to properly support same, and they should be encouraged to have their members armed and ready with the weapons they CAN use effectively.
     
  14. minnesota oldie

    minnesota oldie Member

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    Anything that doesn't have a red button. 5 4 3 2 1 Boom.
     
  15. labgrade

    labgrade Member In Memoriam

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    Anything conventional, to include Stinger systems, etc.

    Anything used as an offensive, or defensive system - including latest detections systems, etc.

    & bfason, Yes. I can buy at any Piggly Wiggly stuff that could turn your hair blue .... ;)
     
  16. bfason

    bfason Member

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    In your dreams you can.
    :neener:
     
  17. PrudentGT

    PrudentGT Member

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    What's the use of granting letters of marque unless some of us vacation aboard our very own Aegis class cruisers...?
     
  18. Shweboner

    Shweboner Member

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    I too am torn on this one. Common sense would tell me that any type of firearm would be okay (any size/caliber)

    I want to agree with explosives, like RPG's Stingers, and other 'stationary' explosives, but what bothers me is that people may have these, but where the hell are the going to "practice" I mean how the hell do you get range time witha case full of RPG's? There goes the backstop!

    But then again, where are you going to hit the range with a minigun?


    You cant be to restrictive, yet you dont want some idiots out there messing everything up. A very fine line... thats why I vote for firearms only. If I can have an M249 I dont think I will miss the RPG too much.

    ~Brian
     
  19. SapperLeader

    SapperLeader Member

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    I voted all conventional weapons, but I only concern with that is that safe storage of explosives. I do feel that storage sites should be regulated, so joe schmoe doesnt keep some nitroglycerine next to his fuel tank, and take my house out with his. As far as criminals getting thier hands on "dangerous weapons", Im pretty confident that they will get their dirty little paws on anything they want. FOr example, the last year, my national guard unit was on active duty for force protection for bases Fort Myer and Fort Mcnair. Mcnair, is located on P-street in downtown dc, a very nasty apart of town. I heard automatic gunfire almost as much as standard semiauto firing, and on at least two occasions, heard the sound of explosions.(granted rather small ones) So, if joe scumbag can play with full auto and explosives while commiting crimes, Joe citizen(me :) ) should be able to play with full auto, and use some c-4 for some stump removal in a safe legal manner. :)
     
  20. Kharn

    Kharn Member

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    If you've got the cash (and hopefully have access to the land to use it properly, but collecting without shooting is fine with me), any conventional weapon should be available.

    But, if a 155mm arty round overshoots your property and lands in a school yard, your *** is grass.

    Kharn
     
  21. Blackcloud6

    Blackcloud6 Member

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    As long as I use it responsibly, it shouldn't matter what I own.

    Noe nukes and such, there is no way to use them resonsibly, you use them and a lot of people, animals and things get destroyed.
     
  22. stevelyn

    stevelyn Member

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    Any small arms, individual or crew served up to and including 20mm.
    Mortars, light artillery and RPGs w/ a licensing system similar to most CHL proceedures.
    Anti-aircraft guns including shoulder fired missles, heavy arty, and explosive materials w/ registration system similar to Class III procedures w/o tax and CLEO signature requirement.
    Nukes tactical or otherwise are definitely out. These truly belong in the g g g g government's (there I said it) hands.

    The problem is not with citizens possessing the more destructive devices and materials, but rather the secure storage of them.
     
  23. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Well, last week there was an aircraft carrier listed at auctionarms.com . . . .

    Anyway, I figure if a typical GI has one, the average civilian should have one, too . . . but these days, I'd draw the line before we get to things like satchel charges, Stinger missles, etc. I hate to parrot the anti's line of "You don't NEED (fill in the blank) for self defense . . . " but seriously, as a person who drives over bridges and has the occasional need to fly commercial, I really would rather not have shoulder fired AA missiles, RPGs and high explosives sold over the counter on a simple "cash and carry" basis.

    So . . . rifles, pistols, shotguns, semi and full auto would be OK, silencers and suppressors OK, short-barreled rifles and shotguns OK, Barrett .50s OK, MG42s, M60s, Vickers guns, etc. OK, maybe even Solothurn and Lahti 20mm OK . . . above that, I guess I'm an "anti gun bigot."
     
  24. Sean Smith

    Sean Smith Member

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    Nukes are indescriminate and impractical. Ditto biological or chemical weapons. Beyond that... :D
     
  25. seeker_two

    seeker_two Member

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    I voted "Any Conventional Weapon", but I do have a few stipulations....

    1. Vehicle-mounted weapons have to meet state requirements for passenger/comercial vehicles (no tanks tearing up my tax-paid roads, please...:uhoh: )

    2. Special training (offered by the gov't) for explosives licensing--including proper storage & usage of materials.

    3. No nukes. (Not really a DEFENSIVE weapon, anyway...:what: )

    4. SEVERE penalties for criminal misuse of ANY weapon. (As it should be--none of this "poor little Jamal was just misunderstood" bull-:cuss: ...)

    As for the "where will we be able to shoot them" question--I'm sure entrepreners will solve that problem...:D
     
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