Why Do You “Need” an AR-15 Rifle Anyway?

Opinion by Michael Stripling

Sparkling Shiny New Glowing AR15 Rifle
Why Do You “Need” an AR-15 Rifle Anyway?

USA – -(AmmoLand.com)- Why does anyone need an AR-15? This question came to me, for the second time in recent history, while I was teaching a concealed carry firearms course at a private range surrounded by woods in Central Florida.

To be honest, even though I had heard this question recently, I still stumbled over my answer. I hesitated slightly and half heartily blurted out something about home defense, but why was this question so hard for me to answer? I mean, the first time I was asked, I have to admit I got a little defensive, and it was my own mother who had asked me. I had fumbled my words, became quite frustrated and told her “I would go find my copy of the Constitution for her to read”.

I later realized that I owed my mother an apology, she had genuinely meant no harm, she was merely ignorant of the subject, and asked in curiosity. It was myself I should have been upset with because, in times like these where our guns and rights are always under attack, I just was not prepared with an intelligent response.

You see, I'm a “gun guy.” I'm a proud NRA member, a firearms instructor, a chief range safety officer, and a veteran. I'm registered to vote Republican, and I have been collecting guns since I was a kid. So how is such a little, simple question presenting me with so much frustration? Well after some careful thought, I realized what the problem was. It was the question; it was not so little or straightforward after all. The question itself is misleading, often unbeknown to the asker.

Why do I have to find a reason to justify my need for it?

The truth is my need doesn’t matter. It might be property defense, it might be hunting or competition, but it doesn’t matter. I don’t NEED to NEED it. I have the RIGHT to WANT it. Why does the average American household need 3 TV's? Why does my wife need 15 pairs of boots? Why do people need to put rims on their vehicles, or what is the need for a microwave oven? Wouldn't the cars still drive with factory tires? Don’t most kitchens have conventional ovens? So why does anyone need any of these things? The answer to all of these questions is the same! It's because I WANT them and it's my RIGHT as an American!

You see, we have this thing called a Constitution, the American Heritage Dictionary defines Constitution as “The system of fundamental laws and principles that prescribes the nature, functions, and limits of a government or another institution. The supreme law of the United States, consisting of the document ratified by the original 13 states and Amendments.”

The question in itself leaves the tart taste of communism in one's mouth. The fact is, the Second Amendment protects us, the law-abiding American citizen, and it protects the other Amendments of the Constitution, and it is now under blatant attack.

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The left tells us they just want to ban the “dangerous assault rifles,” high capacity magazines, and bump stocks, but that is just the beginning. They only say this to win over those, who wander on the middle ground. What comes next are “permanent protective orders” like the House Bill 2060 that’s making its way to the Pennsylvania state Senate right now. Which would require certain individuals to relinquish all firearms and ammunition within 24 hours. You can be sure it won't stop there, if the Liberals get their dirty claws in the American people, they will undoubtedly pull us in for the kill, sinking their infecting teeth in the whole Constitution, shredding and destroying all of our freedoms and liberties.

This is it folks, this is a Civil War and we must fight, not yet with violence, but with our voices and our votes. We must resist in any way possible before it's too late. I urge you to call, or write your Senators, remind your friends to register and to vote. Let the snowflake Liberals know that, “we will not stand for our freedoms to be stripped away.” The time is now upon us, our Constitution was written to protect the people of this great nation, and it is under attack. “We the People” must return the favor and protect the Constitution.

  • 432 thoughts on “Why Do You “Need” an AR-15 Rifle Anyway?

    1. Well, you kind of glossed over the fact that the Army and Marines adopted the platform during Vietnam and was designated a AR15 by the Army and the Marine Corps recieved it and it was designated the M16. Before that, we in the Marine Corps were issued the Springfield , M-14 in 7.62mm or the .308. When you decide to tell the history of arms, don’t leave anything out. I could swear it is almost like reading “fake news”.

      1. Tom, the AR15 that was adopted by the military is not and was not the same firearm sold by Colt to the civilian population as the AR-15. Your post is a lie, or at the least disinformation, unfortunately for you, we here that are regular readers and posters are not the ignorant masses that would believe your disingenuous post. You need to post your lies elsewhere, if you want or expect a fawning audience.

      2. Not quite, Tom…

        It was an M-16 in the Army’s designation, too. The Armalite company caused some confusion by originally calling BOTH the full-auto rifle (supplied exclusively to the military) and the semi-auto rifle (supplied exclusively to the civilian market) an AR-15… but the Army’s official nomenclature became (just like the Marines) an M-16. I carried one in VietNam in ’69, although I took Basic (in ’68 at Ft Polk LA) with the old M-14… and loved that beast!

      3. Closest is the CAR 15 series by Colt, but the most successful was the Colt Commando type classified XM177E1 by the Army and GAU-5 by the Air Force.

        Don’t need one but given how close I live to Juarez and outbreaks of fighting by cartels, might sing different song next week.

    2. Purely and simply, WE ARE AMERICANS, living in the greatest nation on Earth, The United States Of America! We are NOT restricted to owning only those things that we can prove we need. There is much more to existence than just getting by with only the few things that we absolutely need, such as water, food, shelter and sleep. There are no requirements for us to NEED things that we want, as long as they are legal to possess and we are legal to have them.

      If you’re anti gun, just don’t get one, but don’t try to build barriers for others. And bear in mind that anyone who would use a gun in the commission of a crime, doesn’t give a damn about anti gun laws.

    3. @GI – You don’t want a gun then don’t get one (as you said). As to the rest of your rant you are a total idiot.. Don’t need a semi-auto for home defense? Ask the person that gets a gang breading into the house.
      Maybe you should use you brain for more that an counter weight!

      1. Rosa Parks may not have needed to sit in the front of the bus. But, she deservered the right to sit anywhere she wanted on the bus. She should not have been restricted to the back of the bus.

    4. Most firearm owners already know this, but for those of you who do not, here is a nutshell history lesson on what the definition of AR is, along with its history.


      Work on the AR-1 “Para sniper” rifle begins breaking new ground by using a foam-filled fiberglass stock and an anodized aluminum barrel with a thin steel liner. In 1954, Armalite was established as a Division of Fairchild Engine and Airplane Corporation. The AR-1 was one of the first rifles produced at Armalite’s location in Hollywood, CA, and paved the way to the development of the AR-10. All rifles were designated AR, short for Armalite Rifle. Shortly thereafter, Armalite submitted the AR-5, .22 Hornet Survival Rifle to the U.S. Air Force as a replacement for their then-standard survival rifle. The AR-5 was adopted and designated the MA-1 Survival Rifle.


      Under the guidance of former Marine and former Army Ordnance technician, Eugene Stoner, the AR-10 became the focus of attention. Army officials asked Armalite to develop a smaller version of the AR-10 in 1956 as a potential replacement for the M1 Garand. The ensuing rifle was called the AR-15 and was produced with aircraft grade aluminum receivers, weighing less than seven pounds. In 1959, the AR-10 was licensed to the Dutch Arsenal, Artillerie Inrichtingen, for sale on the international market and then to Colt’s Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company, along with the AR-15. Shortly thereafter, Armalite began development of a new rifle, the AR18. Development of the AR-16 (which was later dropped due to the Army’s adoption of the M-14) and AR-17 12-gauge shotgun begins. The AR-7 Explorer becomes the first commercial rifle produced by Armalite. It is the civilian version of the Air Force adopted AR-5 Survival Rifle.


      Production of the AR-18 started at the Howa Machinery Company of Nagoya, Japan (1967). For Japanese political reasons the Howa rifles could be sold only to non-combatant nations, and even then, only to non-Asian nations. During the Vietnam War, the AR-18 could not be exported to the United States. In mid-1968, Armalite set up pilot production in its Costa Mesa plant for AR-18s and AR-180s. The Japanese government subsequently eased restrictions and allowed the commercial semi-automatic AR-180 to be exported to the U.S. By the late 1970s, U.S. production halted.


      The Capital Southwest Corporation of Dallas, Texas funded Armalite development programs. Armalite arranges testing of the AR-18 with the hope of attaining DOD and State Department endorsement of the rifle toward filling the void existing for a modern combat rifle for friends and allies around the world. With sales shifting towards the commercial market, a semi-automatic version of the AR-18 was created—the AR-180.

      1980 – 1987

      Armalite was sold to Elisco Tool Manufacturing Company, of the Philippines. Inventory, tooling, and machinery were dispatched from the U.S. plant to the Philippines. The process fell apart due to political events in the Philippines. The political and economic links of the government were dramatically shifted, and Elisco was unable to carry out the AR-18 production. The U.S. arm of the operation was closed in 1987. Independent of Armalite, Karl Lewis and Jim Glazier formed a company named Eagle Arms in Coal Valley Illinois in 1986. Eagle Arms initially marketed M16 and AR-15 type rifle parts. The early Stoner patents had expired, and Eagle was able to build both parts and complete rifles. In 1989, Eagle commenced production of complete rifles, with LMT serving as the major supplier.


      The M-15™ is introduced as direct competition with Colt’s trademarked AR-15. Mr. Mark Westrom purchases Eagle Arms where he continued to produce the Eagle Arms EA-15 rifle. Product focus turned toward high-grade target rifles. Shortly thereafter, a design for a .308-caliber AR-10 type rifle was initiated and designated the M-10. Westrom purchased all rights to the Armalite trademark in 1995, and production of Armalite rifles resumed in Illinois. The planned M-10 rifle series was designated the AR-10B series and was developed using unusual reliance on computer design and simulation. Armalite drastically expands the AR-10 line with new featured rifles and carbines, including the AR-10 SuperSASS™, which features an adjustable gas system to accommodate suppressed and unsuppressed fire.


      The AR-20 was introduced and was the initial designation of Armalite’s .50-caliber rifle. The designation was later changed to the AR-50 to emphasize the caliber of the firearm. This period also brought the introduction of a few devices to help test and train the Mk 19: the AR-22—a Blank Firing Device for the Mk 19 Mod 4 40mm Grenade Machine and the AR-23—a Sub-Caliber Training Device for the Mk 19 Mod 4 Grenade machine gun. The AR-30 was also introduced during this time and is based on an aluminum stock that merges a machine rest with a rifle stock for stunning stability. This design is immune to changes in temperature or humidity.


      Armalite introduces the AR-180B made of a high strength polymer and features the trigger group and magazine well of the AR-15. It uses standard AR-15 type magazines and repair parts are readily available.


      In July 2013, Armalite is purchased by Strategic Armory Corps, and celebrates 60 years of manufacturing. The product line is expanded to meet the needs of the market and include a wide variety of entry level, tactical, and competition rifles. During the 2016 U.S. election cycle, Armalite revives the Eagle Arms brand, introducing an entry level M-15 platform rifle. The brand experiences their largest period of growth and record sales during this period.

      The Strategic Armory Corps is purchased by a new owner. The group invests heavily in new technology and research/development of cutting-edge product. Armalite moves operations from Geneseo, IL to join its sister companies in Phoenix, AZ. The Armalite brand image is refreshed to reflect the significant investment in its new state-of-the-art facility, machinery, and R&D, while paying homage to its beginnings in the Aerospace industry.
      What will come next?

      1. Well, you kind of glossed over the fact that the Army and Marines adopted the platform during Vietnam and was designated a AR15 by the Army and the Marine Corps recieved it and it was designated the M16. Before that, we in the Marine Corps were issued the Springfield , M-14 in 7.62mm or the .308. When you decide to tell the history of arms, don’t leave anything out. I could swear it is almost like reading “fake news”.

        1. Sorry Tom,
          If you felt that I glossed over Army & Marines applications during the Vietnam era, no disrespect intended.
          I only get the historical information from its original source, the ARMALITE history book.
          I have Great respect for the FAIRCHILD ENGINE and AIRPLANE CORPORATION, in which ARMALITE was a division of. Fairchild had many fantastic divisions, cameras, recording equipment, semiconductors,
          the history of Fairchild also had historical ties with Alexander Graham Bell…
          I will not write “fake news”, only facts….

    5. What have Republicans actually DONE for gun owners? Has Trump lifted the ban on importing Norincos? SVT40s? Overturned the NFA? Lifted the import ban on Mosin Nagants? This piece mentions “liberals” but the “Liberal Obama” permitted guns on Amtrack & on National Forest land.

      My guess is Trump & his fellow travellers will be all chummy with us when they want our votes & then conveniently forget us once re elected. It stinks.

      1. @9mmiii, Trump has not had the Congress available to him to do those things. Trump’s S.Ct. picks can prevent gun grab schemes and get us back to the Constitution. It has only been two years of his administration, and he has had unprecedented resistance from libtards, the bureaucracy, and the Grand old Prostitute party. Have a little patients.

    6. Well put, the majority of our fighting men and women would be on the side of legitimate gun ownership as they took an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies. Foreign and domestic. I took it as did all my friends.

    7. You know what! No one is going to come to your house and demand you turn over your guns. Do you know why I know that? I’m a gun owner. I’m also one of your liberal snowflakes. Ignore for the moment my mention of gun ownership. I will defend your to protect your second amendment rights as adamently as I would demand you defend my constitutional rights. I will stand by your side and argue w/our government why you deserve your AR. I will stand back to back if necessary. I would expect no less from you.

      1. Tell that to the 61-year old man who was recently executed by police IN HIS HOME in Maryland when he refused to turn over his firearms. The gradual eradication of 2nd Amendment rights is, and has been, happening in many parts of our country. Leftists/socialists/communists/DemocRATS don’t seek to eradicate all gun ownership…..they seek to ensure that CITIZEN gun ownership is eliminated and/or so severely restricted that no effective resistance can be mounted against their well-armed government thugs. Why do you think so many local law enforcement agencies are now being equipped with military equipment, especially crowd control equipment???? This kind of weaponry is not needed for law enforcement against common criminals but it will be used against citizenry who dare to complain when their constitutional rights are eliminated by government dictators. Can’t happen???….it’s already happening.

    8. To the people who claim we would not have a chance to fight our own military;
      2 things at play here.
      1. Our own military is US (we) so they would not be available in its full size, if any
      2.We can’t win the war in Afghanistan which is a rag tag enemy consisting of farmers with rifles. What makes you think our military could win a war in the US with over 300 millions fire arms spread out in every town,city and rural area ?

      1. Absolutely correct, Ren have heard that bogus argument for years. I believe the majority of our military would be on our side. Right now the bureaucracy is our biggest threat.
        IRS, BLM, and all the others that have become weaponized.

    9. Trust and believe i will not give up my protection.thats what they want is for us to be defencless so they can herd us up in fema camps and to de populate.that is what they are doing and anyone who is smart would figure that out.the ones who give up their guns are one of them.cival war is gonna happen so why give up your gun are u stupid.goverment could care less if anybody shoots up a place.they dont care they act like they do.the use it as a tool to take from us.they probably paid them to do it.

    10. Why Police officer and Army have to have gun? Why most shootings having in the School or in the bar or in Church or in movies? The answer is very sample because of these places are not allowed good guys with guns in to stop the bad guys with guns. Special place like these are please allow good guys with guns in to safe good people. Wake up people let safe our children our love ones and stop stupid gun control.

    11. The question that has not been asked, except perhaps in some scifi books. If a graduate Marine with one or two years of service walked bare handed into a grade school with 400 kindergarten through sixth grade students and began killing people how many school teachers with out a gun would die? How many children?
      Maybe all military troops should be restricted to base and when their enlistment was up, their hands and feet should be cut off?
      Mass public killings happen because violations of the Second Amendment create “gun free zones” which are Unarmed Victim Zones and need a warning sign, Enter at Your Own Risk.

    12. I need a rifle, or two. I am training to perform the duty and right of self defense…as happens a couple million times a year in the US; the defensive use of firearms (DGUs) . I’m not looking for the approval of the ignorant or interested in debating with fools. I have seen what the Shumers and the Feinsteins say, and I know what they want.

      The gun control crowd and the appeasers reporting in here want you dead. Disarming people is evil, doesn’t matter what they say. When some cannibal comes to shoot up the place and murder you and everyone around, you’ll wish you had an autoloader and a sack of magazines. Unless you are a coward.

      I hope the six un-armed cops are utterly ashamed.

      I say shun the appeasers, they’re probably useless in a fight.

      1. How did we get to this point?? It’s who we’ve become not what we were! You see the same constitution that allows us the freedom to do everything, our FAITH refrained us from doing everything!! We’re no longer espousing our faith and our founders didn’t write moral law into the constitution, because our faith as a people (nation) refrained us from doing the immoral!!! Now when you’ve people of no faith in office, you get judges and people of power legislating immoral laws on its people!! Remember, we just want gay (insert any initiative) people to not be victimized by intolerance!! They deserve the same rights and need protection from people of faith! Really? Now the same rights that we were all afforded become mute because their rights exclude our rights! That’s true with all of the Bill of Rights, they passed civil rights which supersedes our bill of rights, and on and on! Just like the frog in a pot of water slowly boiling to death. That’s where we’re headed, as our Constitution was written for a moral and religious people and no other! John Adams words and very profound

    13. You would do your cause a service by making your point without using words like “libs”, “the left”, and, especially, “libtards”. Insulting others does nothing but weaken your position. When you talk about civil war, you make yourself the enemy.
      There are some very valid points to be made supporting the right to keep and bear arms, including MSRs. We as responsible gun owners need to be willing to discuss realistic measures to keep them away from dangerous or irresponsible people.
      For the record, I am a retired infantryman and own several MSRs.

      1. Tony , name calling is when you call someone something rude , like calling a person of color the n-word. A Jewish person a name etc. These are wrong , and impolite. Ignorant in fact. Don’t confuse this with the truth. The democrats are the left , as we POTG are the right. One can call me a Right wing nut case , I am not offended , one can also call the liberal party Lib’s , they are just that. These are called abbreviations , not insulting , just factual. Believe me when I tell you , the Lib’s and the left want our guns , first they will take the AR -15 because a few unstable individuals , used this rifle to do unspeakable things. If you think they will stop there , I say they will not. Next will be pistols . the reason being they are semi automatic and hold many rounds , can be easily concealed , and fire rapidly. Any & every thing in between will be on their list of what we can & can’t have. Tyrany at its finest. Unconstitutional , absolutely. Only the wealthy will keep their guns , because the almighty dollar buys anything. Government included , in collusion with the Bloomberg’s of our country. Are our rights under our constitution for sale , to the highest bidder ? It seems so to this American patriot. I say the LEFT and the Lib’s are coming for our guns. They have made their intentions very clear.

        1. Richard, you may not agree with liberals but they are half the country. Why not try an open a dialog with them and come to a point of understanding. Do you really think that half the country wants to take you guns for some sinister authoritarian agenda? The truth is that the vast majority of people supporting (even extreme) gun control measures just want less violence. They may be mistaken about how to get there but they have good intentions. They need to be educated on the issue. This adversarial rhetoric you adopt is not conducive to reaching understanding. Like it or not liberals are your family members, neighbors, coworkers and fellow citizens. Why try to understand their point of view and educate.

    14. Why bother , my comments seem to disappear shortly after I make them , go figure. But to the question asked why ……. Because it is my right as an American. Provided by our founding fathers & the blood shed for our constitution.

      1. “… responsible gun owners need to be willing to discuss realistic measures…” Nice idea, but…

        Two problems, Tony. First, both sides must be “willing to discuss.” And that willingness must be in good faith. The political Right is indeed willing, but the political Left (particularly their current leaders) flatly refuses either. Second, the political Left has no concept or understanding of the term “realistic.” Socialists see the “real world” (not as it is, but) merely as an impediment to getting what they want.

        Thus, Socialists ARE the problem, and they refuse to change their stance, instead demanding that conservatives must do ALL the changing of position. Until socialists decide to actually negotiate, no practical headway can be accomplished. No matter any actions by conservatives.

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