When Beginning Meaningful Dialogue on Guns Understanding of the Facts Comes First

Letters to the AmmoLand Editor
Letters to the AmmoLand Editor: Got something on your mind? Let us know and you can see it here.

USA –-(Ammoland.com)-Understanding comes first.

“This gun was designed for combat. It’s an assault weapon.”

· Some commercial firearms are cosmetically similar to military-issue weapons.

· Military assault-weapons typically have a selector switch for SAFE (no fire), FIRE (one round per trigger pull) and AUTO (many or a burst of 3 rounds per trigger pull). Commercial models have only two positions: SAFE and FIRE (one round).

· Because of the recoil buffer system and ergonomic pistol grip, the military-style design is easy to manage, making it popular for target and recreational sport shooting.

· AR15 military-style rifles use a .22 caliber bullet (22/100ths inch) and are no more powerful than other modern sport rifles.

· “AR” stands for ArmaLite rifle, the company that developed it in the 1950s. “AR” does not stand for “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.”

· Twelve million productive members of society participate responsibly in the sport of target shooting in the U.S. National Shooting Sports Foundation website: www.nssf.org/shooting/youth.


“Why do citizens require guns that can kill dozens of people without reloading?”

  • See paragraph below for existing federal firearm laws.
  • Shooting is an Olympic sport.
  • Twelve youth organizations such as 4-H, scouting, DeMolay, FFA, Junior High School Rodeo and ROTC incorporate shooting sports into their development programs.
  • International target shooting matches involve “rapid” or “timed fire” events with 2-8 rounds fired between reloads.


“I am going to introduce legislation to ban assault weapons.”


“The NRA is a powerful gun lobby.”

This is only one service provided to U.S. citizens.

  1. The NRA was created in 1871 to provide marksmanship skill and firearm safety training to any U.S. citizen. Today, the NRA shooting sports tradition:
    • Sponsors 11,000 target shooting matches annually.
    • Certifies 80,000 firearms safety instructors who teach/coach nearly one million citizens a year.
  1. Following the onset of FBI collection of crime data in 1975, union strikes, two assassination attempts on President Ford and growing concern about personal protection, NRA created the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA). The impetus for this sub-division was to balance new legislative initiatives with individual rights protected by the U.S. constitution through lobbying and other support activities. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/District_of_Columbia_v._Heller
  2. The Friends of NRA division was created in 1992 as a unique grant program in which 50% of the money raised remains in that state. The remainder becomes a general fund available to all states. The “Friends” grant program raises $50 million a year, $20 at a time. More than 65% of these grant funds are locally requested in support of youth shooting sports (trips to participate in National Championships, classroom and club supplies, range safety enhancements, etc.)


Beyond mere Gun Control

In the important debate about violence in which guns are used, pundits should avoid “cherry picking” self-serving statistics. Our leaders are held to a higher standard than their personal bias. Public officials serve their constituents best with an informed and objective review of the cause-and-effects leading to a crime, rather than blaming the weapon used.


Additional topics to consider:

  • Violent computer games that present guns and death to impressionable youth as merely a “winning score.”
  • Better awareness and reporting of the early signs of deviant behavior—before a tragedy.
  • Linking psychological treatment to the firearm purchase process.
  • Required education for responsible gun ownership and storage.
  • More security for vulnerable “gun free zones.” Consider the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) model that burdens law-abiding citizens who travel, in order to protect many from the criminal actions of a few.
  • Review the solutions of other countries like Canada and New Zealand who support sports shooting, without banning guns.

This is just my contribution to the Gun Control Debate. I hope it helps make clear the facts for both sides.

By Chip Lohman

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

We have the 2nd Amendment Right, so we don't have to justify a "need" for wanting an AR15 or any other gun. The AR15 was intended for the civilian market, or it would have been selective fire.

Theses guns are great for self defense, the gang members & criminals have guns, so people have a Right to have a better defense.


As a career military leader and firearms owner, I find your statements about the AR-15 to be incomplete and ignore important facts: * "Cosmetic similarities" belie the fact that incorporates design features focused on giving the operator an advantage in direct-fire combat * The 5.56mm round may not be any more powerful than other .22c rounds, but the tumbling bullet is designed to inflict tremendous wounds * Civilian versions may only allow semi-automatic fire, but high-capacity magazines enable devastating firepower. * The buffer system and pistol grip may be attractive to sport shooters, but the same qualities enable even poorly-trained… Read more »


If they want training to be required to purchase a gun, then a program could be set up free of charge. The program could be set up and funded in a manner sort of like the hunter safety courses are required for people, in order to get a hunting license.

This problem is not about guns, it's about Violent Criminals that never seem to pay the price. Remember the bombing in Oklahoma? That guy was a domestic terrorist and was executed like one, and that's all we have to do with terrorists that survive.

jerry sweet

Facts?.maybe some who are have listened to the vile lies,coming from all liberals,might wake up up.but they don't care about facts,other than the fact!! is they will use and (do) any thing they can to grab our guns and disarm us.these are the facts.they want to murder us at their leisure and not suffer any consequences,for them or to their own persons.


As a gun collector and club member I agree that there many contributing factors to bad behavior with guns. I think that mandatory weapons training at the gun owners expense would be useful to society and gun owners too. The training should include safety, of course, but also the defensive use of weapons. How this would implemented retro actively I don't know, but it could be required of all new gun purchases.

Jon H

I noticed in the additional topics to consider that you have listed violent video games. Saying that video games make people commit violent acts is the same as saying owning a gun will make you commit violent acts. I am an avid gamer as well as a gun collecter and take offence that people will try to tie video games to any horrific act like this the same way I take offense to others saying that this happened because of 'assault weapons'.