The NRA-ILA: The Truth about “Assault Weapons”

NRA ILA AR-15 Range
The NRA-ILA explains the difference between a modern sporting rifle and the fictitious “Assault Weapon”. IMG NRA-ILA

U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- Joe Biden and Kamala Harris want to ban certain types of semi-automatic firearms that are rarely used in crimes. These firearms are also commonly owned; estimates from 2018 peg the number owned in the U.S. at more than 16 million. So why are Biden and his would-be Florida man, Michael Bloomberg, so focused on these semi-automatic firearms? Why are certain types of semi-automatic rifles “uniquely deserving of prohibition?”

Law professor E. Gregory Wallace analyzed the arguments used to justify bans on these firearms, and his conclusions have been published in the Tennessee Law Review. Wallace does not address why anti-gun activists focus on semi-automatic rifles, but it is important to consider the origins of this effort. In the early 1980s, efforts to ban handguns failed to gain traction with the American public so gun controllers decided that a new focus on rifles could be a stepping stone to their ultimate goal. Their scheme depended on Americans’ ignorance regarding these rifles – and it still does. That’s why Biden and others continue to push the same falsehoods nearly 40 years later.

Wallace tackles these deliberate falsehoods and dismantles the assertions that semi-automatic rifles are somehow exceptionally lethal because they are “military-style” “weapons of war” or have a “capability for lethality…far beyond that of other firearms in general.” That last quote isn’t from Joe Biden; it’s from a court decision upholding a ban on certain types of semi-automatic firearms. Judges are important, so vote – but back to Wallace’s excellent analysis. Let’s briefly review the truth Wallace shines onto these claims.

The fact that the military M16 and M4 resemble a civilian AR-15 does not make the rifles equal. That they fire the same cartridge is also irrelevant. The military chooses service weapons and calibers based on any number of factors and trade-offs are necessary. Military personnel also use 9mm pistols like the Glock 17 and the Sig P320; the 1911 .45 caliber pistol; 12-gauge shotguns like the Mossberg 500 or the Remington 870; and bolt-action rifles like the Remington 700.

An argument to ban “military-style” firearms is really an argument to ban all firearms. All modern firearms have some type of military analogue.

The second claim alleges that semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15 are supposedly “extra lethal” because they shoot faster, are more powerful, hold more ammunition, and cause more serious wounds than other firearms. These allegations would require semi-automatic firearms like the AR-15 to have a higher rate of fire, a higher velocity than other rifles, a unique ability to accept magazines with more than an arbitrary number of rounds, and somehow be differently subject to the laws of physics and physiology than any other firearm.

It’s important to note here that Wallace is, by his own admission, a firearms instructor and competitive shooter but his insight and experience only informs his analysis – it does not drive him to a predetermined conclusion. That much is obvious, as his analysis is based on indisputable facts – the same raw facts that are willfully ignored by gun control proponents. We’ll take each of these claim requirements individually, though without the same depth.

First, all semi-automatic firearms have essentially the same rate of fire: one round fired for every trigger pull. Another go-to gun control claim is that an AR-15 can be fired between 300 and 500 times per minute, which would require between five and eight trigger pulls per second for an entire minute (without time for necessary reloads). Wallace points out that the sources for these claims were prominent gun control advocates. Again, all semi-automatic firearms have essentially the same rate of fire.

The most common AR-15 cartridges – the .223 or 5.56 – produce less kinetic energy than other common rifle rounds. These factors, and a myriad of other variables, determine the type and severity of wounds inflicted by a gunshot. There is nothing exceptionally unique about the AR-15 or other semi-automatic firearms in this regard. Wallace explores these ballistics topics in great detail, noting that the “wound severity depends largely on the type and quantity of tissue disruption, which in turn depend on the location of the bullet strike.

Claims to the contrary from gun control advocates or even physician advocates, Wallace argues, are based on emotion or myths and some such testimony has been directly contradicted by the facts.

A magazine of a certain capacity does not make an AR-15 or any firearm any more powerful or fire any faster. Most full-size handguns come with magazines that hold 15 or more rounds and are capable of taking magazines with even greater capacities. In other words, the term “high-capacity” is a misnomer; these are common magazines. Wallace cites research that estimates more than 100 million magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds in circulation and cites Gary Kleck’s research that found that larger-capacity magazines do not produce more lethal outcomes in mass shootings.

Wallace goes into significantly more depth on these topics, but his point is constant: the semi-automatic firearms targeted by “assault weapon” bans are no more lethal than any other rifle.

Wallace injects facts into a debate driven by emotion and ignorance and demonstrates that semi-automatic rifles are not uniquely lethal firearms that warrant special restrictions.

But that is precisely what Biden wants to do.

Imagine this, if you dare: Joe Biden is inaugurated President of the United States. He and Vice President Kamala Harris force law-abiding gun owners to either surrender their lawfully acquired firearms or pay a punitive tax to keep (and register) their own property.  What do you think happens when crime is not impacted (since rifles are rarely used in crime)?

They’ll turn back to handguns. That’s been the gun control end game since the beginning. Biden has already admitted he does not consider the 2nd Amendment to be an individual right, in direct contradiction to the Supreme Court decision that affirmed that exact status.

What do you think will happen if Biden gets a chance to fulfill the dreams of Michael Bloomberg and Beto O’Rourke?

What happens if Biden gets a chance to appoint justices to the Supreme Court?

That’s what’s at stake this November. None of the facts presented by Wallace matter to gun grabbers. They want your guns – and they plan to start with semi-automatic rifles.


National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)

About NRA-ILA:

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

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Arizona Don
Arizona Don
25 days ago

I have said it before and I will say it again the effects of restrictive gun laws is absolutely plain to those who are willing to “honestly” look. Most of the people who are against the second amendment and guns are either ignorant of facts and history or they just plain ignore them knowing they are the facts (I am not saying they are stupid just that they are ignorant of the facts although they MAY also be stupid). They will not even listen to proven factual reasoning.  Such an attitude can only lead to one place and that place is conflict.   Restrictive… Read more »

KK
KK
25 days ago

Imagine this, if you dare: Joe Biden is inaugurated President of the United States. He and Vice President Kamala Harris force law-abiding gun owners to either surrender their lawfully acquired firearms or pay a punitive tax to keep (and register – TO FACILITATE CONFISCATION) their own property.

. . . Like has ALREADY BEEN PASSED INTO LAW . . . in NY – CT – any others? . . . CA? – RI? – MA? – MD? – NJ? . . . ANY OTHERS?

Millions of American Citizens are ALREADY LIVING UNDER THE BURDEN OF THIS COMMUNIST SCENARIO!

RoyD
RoyD
25 days ago
Reply to  KK

Life is all about choices.

Arizona
Arizona
25 days ago
Reply to  KK

Those that are unfortunate enough to live in those states should do something about those laws, and the POS politicians who passed them. While giving the unconstitutional laws all due consideration by ignoring them, of course, as SCOTUS justices have informed us that unconstitutional laws such as licensing and registering firearms are illegal and without authority from birth.

Arizona Don
Arizona Don
25 days ago
Reply to  KK

There are conservatively speaking about one hundred fifty million gun owners here in America. Realistically speaking there may be nearer two hundred million. However, I will use the smaller of the two the 150,000,000 figure here. Now then studies have shown the average number of guns per household is 7.9 however here again for the sake of this demonstration I will use 7. Now then take seven times one hundred fifty million and you will get a “conservative” estimate of how many guns are actually here in the United States of America. Now realistically how long do YOU think it would take to confiscate… Read more »

StLPro2A
StLPro2A
25 days ago
Reply to  Arizona Don

Buto O’Dork will not have to confiscate your guns. You will willingly hand them over. They will pass the promised Socialist anti-2a agenda laws. You will have a short period to hand them in. If you don;t your financial world will be frozen…..credit cards, bank accounts, investment accounts, social security, et el, et el. You will be financially frozen. How long will you be able to hold out with the cash in your pocket???? Probably also your communication avenues….phone, internet, etc. A few well prepped individuals will be made the example for a few confiscation raids by SWAT……not at your… Read more »

KK
KK
25 days ago

Here is the TRUTH about the semi-automatic rifles that they propagandize to be “assault weapons” (and the standard full capacity magazines that go with them):

Outlawing semi-automatic AR15 type rifles and standard full capacity magazines is NOT a “reasonable compromise” – IT IS THE ENDGAME!
It is the difference between an effectively armed citizenry that possesses the capability to defend it’s freedoms – and a citizenry restricted by law to low capacity sporting arms that NO LONGER possesses the capability to defend it’s freedoms!

Arizona
Arizona
25 days ago
Reply to  KK

Rifles of all types, including AR’s, are used annually in less than 4% of all shooting deaths. The demand to ban AR’s has nothing to do with lethality or capacity, and everything to do with fear and manipulation of an uninformed public.

Arizona Don
Arizona Don
25 days ago
Reply to  Arizona

Restrictive gun laws assist the criminal they do not in any way assist law enforcement. It has always been that way! They make the vulnerable more vulnerable including law enforcement! These communist posing as democrats today have but one goal “total gun confiscation.” They cannot secure absolute power over everything without it. However, that will never happen here in the United States of America. The people will just not comply with any such law!  

In the final analysis we here in America will use these guns to put down a tyrannical government if need be! Make no mistake about that. 

Capn Dad
Capn Dad
25 days ago

The article explains the ridiculous arguments against ownership of so called assault rifles but doesn’t answer the reason why they don’t want Americans to be armed. Here’s why: The only thing a politician fears is a lost reelection and an armed electorate. Both threaten the neo aristocracy politicians have created for themselves and their families.

Stag
Stag
26 days ago

This is hilarious considering the NRA was complicit in getting “assault weapons” heavily regulated in 1934 and banned in 1986.

Last edited 26 days ago by Stag
MICHAEL J
MICHAEL J
26 days ago

The liberal left demonize anything they disagree with. Label and catch phrases without true meaning and substance are their stock and trade. Only the weak minded and ignorant fall for their rhetoric and there are a lot of them.

Jaque
Jaque
26 days ago

A third option by gun owners was not explored by the author. Mass organized Resistance. No surrendering to any mandate by communists to take our weapons. Anyone who thinks the communist bastards will be nice after disarming the population is a fool. So the choice in binary. Surrender and die. Resist and live.

Arizona Don
Arizona Don
25 days ago
Reply to  Jaque

Restrictive gun laws assist the criminal they do not assist law enforcement. It has always been that way! They make the vulnerable more vulnerable including law enforcement! These communist posing as democrats today have but one goal “total gun confiscation.” They cannot secure absolute power over everything without it. However, that will never happen here in the United States of America. The people will just not comply with any such law!   In the final analysis we here in America will use these guns to put down a tyrannical government if need be! Make no mistake about that.  The American people will be pushed only so far. This has been… Read more »

Dragonfly
Dragonfly
26 days ago

Ignorance can be overcome. Stupidity has no cure.

df

RoyD
RoyD
25 days ago
Reply to  Dragonfly

Death has, on occasion, been shown to be a cure for stupidity.

Boz
Boz
26 days ago

When the Founding Fathers wrote the 2nd Amendment they hadn’t just returned from a hunting trip, they had just liberated a nation.

2WarAbnVet
2WarAbnVet
26 days ago

The left’s objection to “weapons of war” in civilian hands is contrary to the Founder’s intent. The Second amendment was not written to protect hunting or self-defense, it was written for citizens to possess the capability to resist overreaching government. It did not bother the Founders, at all, that in their time the citizens were better armed than the government. It was true, particularly in the South and on the frontier, that citizens were carrying rifles that were deadly at 250-300 yards. The government equipped soldiers with smoothbore muskets effective at only 50-75 yards. The reason this did not disturb… Read more »

Ryben Flynn
Ryben Flynn
26 days ago

“They’ll turn back to handguns. That’s been the gun control end game since the beginning. Biden has already admitted he does not consider the 2nd Amendment to be an individual right, in direct contradiction to the Supreme Court decision that affirmed that exact status.”
And in contradiction to the English language as it is written.
Google this:
A 2nd Amendment Grammar Lesson | The Political Hat

Last edited 26 days ago by Ryben Flynn