Leave it to that Newton guy. Thanks to him, we recognize the inevitability of that whole “what goes up, must come down” thing. And when it comes to small pieces of lead that are projected out of a rifle or handgun into the air, when what went up comes down, it can come down with enough speed/force/mass to kill. But that’s not likely to stop the Libyans, Rebels Without a Clue…
From our pals over at Business Insider, comes this report on the wisdom of firing one’s firearm into the air in a celabratory slap-up over the ousting of a tyrant:
We’re asking because watching CNN right now, it seems like everyone in Tripoli, LIbya is out firing automatic weapons into the air.
It has us wondering: Where will all those bullets land? Could they actually kill someone?
Turns out the answer is yes.
They picked up on our fave Discovery Channel opus, MythBusters, and their shocking (shocking, I say!) exposé of the practice of indiscriminately firing into the air.
In the case of a bullet fired at a precisely vertical angle (something extremely difficult for a human being to duplicate), the bullet would tumble, lose its spin, and fall at a much slower speed due to terminal velocity and is therefore rendered less than lethal on impact. However, if a bullet is fired upward at a non-vertical angle (a far more probable possibility), it will maintain its spin and will reach a high enough speed to be lethal on impact. Because of this potentiality, firing a gun into the air is illegal in most states, and even in the states that it is legal, it is not recommended by the police. Also the MythBusters were able to identify two people who had been injured by falling bullets, one of them fatally injured. To date, this is the only myth to receive all three ratings at the same time.
So call it “Irresponsible Gun Owner(s) of The Day,” or a bunch of guys suffering from premature ejerkulation, it matters not. It’s all fun and everything until someone gets killed.