Comments about ‘Letters: Assault weapon distinction’

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Published: Wednesday, Jan. 30 2013 12:00 a.m. MST

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Far East USA, SC

"Fully automatic weapons have been regulated in the U.S. since 1934."

And yet, it would be very difficult to pass even an automatic weapon ban today.
The "shall not be infringed" crowd believes in any and all weapons, anyplace.

Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

The same people who say that "the problem isn't guns, it's mental health care", are the same people who are opposed to providing mental health care to all Americans.

Castle Valley, Utah


Reaonable people are for reasonable controls.

Unreasonable people in this debate just dig in their heels, refuse to give an inch out of an irrational paranoia that the 2nd Amendment is going away.

American Fork, UT

I agree the current efforts are kind of symbolic. But they're not nothing, and that's symbolic, too. And nobody is about quashing your second amendment rights.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT


1. Obama isn't coming to get your guns - any of them - even assault rifles.

2. Most Americans WANT a background checks - which btw, is still 100% Constitutional.

3. And FYI - weapon registration is also 100% Constitutional.

4. The 2nd ammendment doesn't specify caliber, grain, or capacity. If you Tea-Partiers want to get technical - our right to bear arms only applies to the single shot, .50 caliber, black power, muzzle-loaders of our Founding Fathers.

5. When neo-cons can finish reading ALL of the 2nd amendment - and prove to us all where they get their training and keep it current, I'll give them credit as to being "well-regulated" - per the Constition. [Otherwise, I'll refer to them what they really are - an un-organized Mob.]

Woodland Hills, UT

What are reasonable controls? Everything currently proposed will have no effect on future shootings. Connecticut, has one of the strictest gun control laws in the US and it did not stop the shooting. Washington DC and Chicago have some of the strongest gun control laws in the US and their homicides rates are the highest in the nation. Gun homicides, robberies, assaults and home invasion robberies are up dramatically in Australia since they enacted they gun ban. However, gun homicides in the US is at the lowest rate in 3 decades. So just how are gun controls, symbolic or not, going to curb gun violence in the US? What we need is better laws/treatment for the mentally ill.
Roland, you are 100% mistaken. As a retired Police Officer I can say with certainty that those who support there second amendment rights are not the ones that are against better health laws. The ACLU and liberal judges are the ones who make it almost impossible to hold someone for a mental health evaluation when they are a danger to themselves or others. Now days you virtually have to take someone before a judge to get them committed.

one old man
Ogden, UT

About the only difference between a fully automatic weapon and semi-automatic is how fast a shooter can move his trigger finger.

It takes about four seconds for a full auto military weapon to unload a 30 round magazine. It takes about six or seven seconds for it to be emptied by someone with a strong trigger finger.

Mighty big difference.

Ogden, UT

"...it would be very difficult to pass even an automatic weapon ban today. The "shall not be infringed" crowd believes in any and all weapons, anyplace."

The purpose of the Second Amendment is to maintain the capacity to deal with a tyrannical government, should one arise in America. In order to do this, the arms of the militia authorized by the Amendment would have to be equal to what the government has in its arsenal. Else, any effort to overthrow a corrupt government would meet with disastrous failure... which would render the Amendment worthless.

Woodland Hills, UT

Joe Blow, you have no logical response to what I said, so instead you change the subject to something that isn't even on the table. EDM, did you listen to Dianne Feinstein and her desire to take all guns? Also, why should we "give an inch" on something that will have absolutely no effect on gun violence and is purely symbolic? Give me some reasonable laws that will make a real difference in gun violence and I will support them. LDS liberal, what can I say. You need to stop watching CNN and MSNBC and Piers Morgan and open you eyes. And you are the one that needs to read the 2nd amendment. It does not say "single shot, .50 caliber, black power, muzzle-loaders." As far as training, I am not the one who goes before Congress, touting stricter gun control laws, holding a weapon with my finger on the trigger. Re gun registration laws, what purpose does it serve? Would that have stopped any of the mass shootings? No! Also, do criminals register their guns? No! We need better mental health laws, not gun control laws.

Lew Scannon
Provo, UT

"Instead of penalizing law-abiding American citizens by taking their guns, our lawmakers should spend their efforts on providing better care for the mentally ill instead of making it harder to hold and treat them."

Good, then let the GOP support a single-payer health-care system that covers all Americans. Otherwise, they are hypocrites.

But the whole "care for the mentally ill" dodge is just that. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 20 percent of Americans experienced a mental illness in 2011. At best, 60 percent of those received treatment. Of those who did receive treatment, most are not violent. But no mental health professional can gaze into a crystal ball and tell us just when stress or some random event might tip someone off the edge.

What do we do, take guns away from everyone who experiences a mental illness? All 45.9 million of them in 2011? And there was a new crop in 2012, and there will be another this year. And what do you mean, Mr. Merritt, by "providing better care" for them? What is better care, and how will it prevent another Newtown? You're naive.

Eric Samuelsen
Provo, UT

As you point out, a number of the Founders did think the 2nd Amendment is there to provide for an armed citizenry in case of a tyrannical ruler. We've already seen it in action, haven't we? 1861-65? Wasn't that a situation where a sizeable part of the country thought they were being deprived of their rights (specifically, the right to own other human beings), and rose up in armed rebellion against their oppressors? That happened, right? 600,000 casualties later, we saw, clearly and without dispute, what a horrendous mistake it was.
The 2nd Amendment has been tried and found wanting. It can lead to nothing but bloodshed and misery.

Woodland Hills, UT

Naive, I don't think so. After 36 years in law enforcement I have probably dealt with more mentally ill people than you. What do I mean by better mental health care/laws? It means a family member can get help when they ask for it without having to jump through a million hoops enacted by liberal law makers and judges. When I first became a PO you could put somebody on a 72 hour mental health hold when I or a family member felt they were a danger. Now it's almost impossible thanks to our liberal friends who want to make sure their rights are not violated. Tell me how new gun control laws are going to stop the mentally ill from going on a shooting rampage? Do you think the mentally ill and criminals are going to abide by gun control laws? For those who want to register our firearms, what purpose does that serve? How is gun registration going to stop somebody bent on mass murder? I know what the intent of that kind of law is, do you?

Far East USA, SC

"The purpose of the Second Amendment is to maintain the capacity to deal with a tyrannical government"

That is your interpretation. I believe the discussion of militias in the constitution was because of OTHER tyrannical governments, not ours. This was at a time when we did not have an federal army and armed citizens would be called to defend our country.

Raptor - "Joe Blow, you have no logical response to what I said, so instead you change the subject to something that isn't even on the table"

Funny, I have not responded since you posted.
Want a logical response?

It is a complicated problem. NO single solution will fix it.
It is hard to argue that if automatic weapons were easily available, they may have been used and most likely more people would die.

Is the solution smaller clips or banning assault weapons? Nope. But they could help. Background checks? Waiting periods? Not unreasonable. Reagan staunchly supported the Brady bill and instituted a 15_day waiting period in California.

Then you write "did you listen to Dianne Feinstein and her desire to take all guns?"

My post contain no outright falsehoods. You cannot say the same.

Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

@WRZ: Do you seriously think that individual citizens have the right to own all the same weapons that our military does? ICBMs, Predator Drones, Cruise Missiles, Tanks, Aircraft Carriers? I can not take seriously anyone who actually believes that, although I agree that a bunch of guys with AR-15s in their basements are no match for a Predator Drone.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

It's so weird that a group that so strongly favors no restrictions on guns is the first group to put restrictions on health care, marriage, drugs, and alcohol.

Hypocritical much redshirt, mike richards, wrz?

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

I see un-organized mob of angry citizens who keep loosing democratically held elections,
who keep trying to tell us their AR-15s, and AK-47s and limited amounts of ammunition can over-throw the United States Government and military.

I beleive the Taliban had a better chance --

at least they had -- Formal Training, some sort of Organization, numerous Foreign suppliers, fully automatic weapons, surface to air missiles, and a legitamate reason to fight while trying to ward off foreign invaders and occupiers.

Eric Samuelsen
Provo, UT
Just proved you with a little History lesson about another bunch of silly rednecks who thought they were above the Constitution, tried to overthrow the Federal government, and take matters into their own hands.

It doesn't turn out like you saw in Rambo, or how El Rushbo tells you.

Woodland Hills, UT

Joe Blow. What "falsehood" did I state? Do you listen to the news? I have nothing against a 15-day waiting period and background checks. Again you talk about automatic weapons which are not the issue and haven't been for decades. In my original letter I was pointing out the difference between automatic weapons and semi-automatic weapons and that most people who want to ban alleged assault weapons don't know the difference. However, instead of bringing up any logical discussion about banning semi-automatic weapons, you changed the subject, twice, to fully automatic weapons. Again, how is banning semi-automatic assault weapons and smaller magazines, not clips, going to stop mass shootings? It isn't. Anybody familiar with semi automatic weapons can change a magazine in 1-2 seconds or less. I fully agree with you that it's a complicated issue and their is no simple solution. However, this knee jerk reaction to ban assault type weapons that have no difference in functionality from semi-automatic handguns and sporting rifles is not the answer.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

BTW - You neo-cons have it all wrong.

The Government can not "infringe" (i.e., confisgate) your assault guns.


The Congress has full constitutional authority over commerce,
so, banning the furture sales is 100% fully constitutional.

Infringed has nothing to do with buying and selling.

Go ahead, make an BushMaster in your garage, keep the rifle Grandpa gave you --
but controlling the buying and selling of such weapons passes Constitutional muster.

Far East USA, SC

"you changed the subject, twice, to fully automatic weapons."

My point is that banning fully automatic weapons probably did save lives. I understand that this is not the discussion, but it is germane. If banning fully automatic weapons is "reasonable" should not semi-automatic weapons at least enter into the conversation?

Also, please note that many feel that there should be NO restrictions as to number, type and place one should be allowed to carry.

"What "falsehood" did I state?"

How about this one.

"did you listen to Dianne Feinstein and her desire to take all guns?"

From CNN politics.

"The restrictions would not apply to guns owned before enactment of any law. Feinstein noted her proposal exempts from the ban more than 2,000 models used for hunting or sporting purposes."

And finally you write "Again, how is banning semi-automatic assault weapons and smaller magazines, not clips, going to stop mass shootings? "

It wont. Nothing will "stop mass shootings"

Neither will a waiting period or background checks. But of those things you write

"I have nothing against a 15-day waiting period and background checks."

Measures are meant to reduce not stop.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

As usual, the liberal left has missed the entire argument. They continually tell us that only "big brother" has the right to give us rights. They have turned everything completely backwards.

This nation derives all of its authority from the people. The government has no power. The government has no authority except what the people have delegated to it. The people, not the government, make the rules. Those rules are made when the people instruct their representatives to write laws. Those representatives have no authority independent of the people. The government has no authority independent of the people.

The right to keep and bear arms belongs to the people, not to the government. The right to regulate arms belongs to the people, not to the government. No one gave the government that authority; in fact, the people explicitly forbade the government from handling gun rights.

The left ignores that fact. The left still believes that we have a king. The left still believes that the king bestows on us "rights".

God made us free. God gave us rights. We control the government. The government does not control us.

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