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Reader Roy H. writes:

Congress established the National Constitution Center and they just unveiled their new “Interactive Constitution” website at where you can read oppposing viewpoints from top legal scholars about the constitution and amendments. They obviously have a 2nd Amendment page where a liberal gets to spill his anti-gun blather and a conservative gets to defend gun rights. But the middle of the road article had one point that kind of upsets me . . .

“Furthermore, eighteenth century civilians routinely kept at home the very same weapons they would need if called to serve in the militia, while modern soldiers are equipped with weapons that differ significantly from those generally thought appropriate for civilian uses. Civilians no longer expect to use their household weapons for militia duty, although they still keep and bear arms to defend against common criminals (as well as for hunting and other forms of recreation).”

So the gun grabbers take away our ability to have full auto M16s and M4s. And they dismiss the 2nd Amendment as unnecessary because civilians wouldn’t expect to take the guns that are legal for them to own into battle since the civilian guns aren’t as battleworthy as the M16s and M4s the government is allowed to have.

See what they did there?

The post doesn’t mention that millions of AR15s, AKs, and other semi-auto rifles that have been sold to civilians would have been select fire and would have been “worthy to take into combat” had the government not prevented people from owning them in the first place.

The truth is, the millions of civilians would do just fine using their personally-owned weapons in the service, if needed. The civilians would, in fact, be better armed and prepared than the average Army specialist who’s stuck with an  rifle that’s had any number of prior users ahead of him who did God knows what with it.

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  1. I don’t believe that we would be better off without them. We should be able to own Full Automatics as Civilians just as the Military has without a ridiculous ban, but I guess unless we campaign against it and start running for government nothing will get done. If you want something done right, do it yourself!

    • We have guns to protect ourselves from our fellow man. Some of those might be our neighbors and some of those might gang-up and call themselves “government.”

      I am FOR the RESTORATION of the ownership of full auto weapons by civilians, as the imposed limitations have provided as much protections for all of us as the “food pyramid” and “food labels” have been at keeping us from growing fat diabetic kids.
      F DAT

        • I’m guessing you boys mean ‘ to own without paying the extra taxes and extra paperwork and all that , last time I checked I had a whole safe full of full auto .

        • @mark s
          You can’t purchase any full autos made after 1986. It isn’t just the taxes and registration. The handful of full autos in circulation are prohibitively expensive for the average person.

        • Yes Mark, all of your safe (used to contain . . . since that terrible fire at sea that one time. . .) items, are PRE-BAN (pre-registered / registered before the 1986 ban from ownership of new mfr’d full-auto/select-fire weapons). If the pre-ban prices don’t create a de facto “ban” to you, then you are a numbnut mf and probably working for the other side. Are you a cop? I know several policemen that happen to have some full-auto items, they have 4 kids, mom stays at home. Sure, there’s probably some security or other work going on, on the side, but it must be nice to pay $12K to $14K (per example) for something that I find difficult to locate for purchase within a 5 state surround.

        • Not just taxes and paperwork but also market interference that prices full autos out of reach for guys like me. I just don’t have $10K to spend on a lower receiver.

          Though I am grateful for stoners design that puts very little stress on the lower receiver of the ar15/m16 pattern. There was an article on either or about a full auto rental range in Las Vegas where the owner talks about what guns wear out and in what ways. He said that with AK pattern rifles the receivers wear out after a 100,000 rounds or so while the stoner designs the receiver itself tends to hold up while the other parts wear out. There would probably be much fewer full autos in circulation without the stoner design.

        • I understand the cost prohibitive stuff people , I haven’t always had financial resources I enjoy now . I wasn’t born into money and I am by no means wealthy . I have worked 16 hours a day for 40 years and I have tithed all those forty years even in times when I ate bologna and bread for weeks in a row . I never played a lot so my conservative personality has benefitted my bank account . I could lose everything tomorrow and still be wealthy in God through my faith in the salvation of Jesus Christ so I have no attachment to any money , other than typical advantages it affords me while I am fortunate enough to have a little of it .

      • +1

        We need ourability to have full auto weapons, SBRs and silencers restored. Making these things difficult and expensive to get and registered has done nothing to reduce crime. All it has done is held back lawful users from using modern technology. The NFA needs to be amended or outright repealed.

        • We should, at the least, have access to SBRs SBS (shotguns) Suppressors/Silencers, AND 2-3round burst. Should be standard at your local gun shop one form and back ground check and you’re good (I know background checks… I’m not a fan) NO person on Person sales should require and FFL. Ever. Also all “Destructive Devices” should be the same as buying a hand gun from a local gun store… And this is all just in case we can’t fully Repeal the NFA Act…

    • /\ This.
      When people say the constitution only meant civilians to have musket-level firepower, they forget that our navy was almost entirely made up of privateers in the early days.

      These privately-owned warships meant that we had civilians zipping around off our coast with entire batteries of artillery at their command.

      • And to that point, all of my guns are superior to what the average military grunt carries today. Yes, they’ve all been broken by the ATF and only fire one round at a time, but I’d still take any one of them over the standard Colt M4 or Beretta M9. Until you start talking special forces gear, air strikes, mortars and the like, my guns > infantry weapons.

        • I have a few semis that I would probably grab for battle . Fact is , you use a whole lot less ammo and can exhibit a little more control with most semis over full , only thing you lose and only somewhat , is suppression fire power , the ability to keep your adversary from moving from point A to point B . A well maintained and perfectly balanced semi AR that you have spent enough time with to call your baby girl is a very powerful tool no matter who your enemy might be .

      • Yes, those muskets and such were the peak of military technology. The best, fastest, most accurate, most deadly arms available in the world at the time. Even most antis agree that the point of the 2A was to allow the citizenry to defend itself against the govt, but then the antis poke fun at the arms discrepancy. It was only muskets back then, etc. Fine. They’re admitting the 2A was meant to allow people to own the same arms as the military and that current restrictions are clear infringement.

        Additionally, the 2A does not say firearms or firepower or guns. It just says arms. It’s purposefully vague in that way because it protects an idea, not a technology. That’s why the 1A doesn’t protect printing presses, but the concept of freedom of expression, and why it applies to the radio, tv, internet, etc. But you don’t hear people running around making the same argument as they do RE “the 2A only meant muskets and technology of the time it was written.” Blah blah another day same crap…

        • Who owns the guns on American Military bases and on the shoulders of our troops around the world , King George ? I get the point you guys are making . You want to be able to walk into a Walmart and buy a full auto tactical weapon , put your cash on the counter and walk out with your new acquisition . That would be nice , but we are a long way from there . Remember , we own this country , all the weapons , from the navy pocket knife to the SAM to the ICBM , it is ours , Mr. and Ms. taxpayer . We pay the salaries of every grunt and top brass , from the Commander in Chief to the next PFC , Every government employee is our employee .
          It seems like people needed reminded of that fact from time to time .

        • Yeah, check this out:

          Scroll down to the US Property picture. We might technically “own” government property in some abstract way, but we sure as the dickens don’t control it.

          Go ahead; ask your friendly local Marine to turn over his rifle to you since it’s “yours.” Let us know how that works out.

          “Public Ownership” is a neat sounding idea, but possession is 9/10ths something, something.

        • Jeremy S.
          I would never expect a US soldier to hand over his or her weapon to me if I ask for it , that’s a tiny bit Ludacris . I would expect them to defend me with it however rather than turning it on me , and if they were to turn it on me , I suspect I would incapacitate the soldier and take the weapon from them without remorse , since it is mine as much as it is theirs .

  2. “The truth is, the millions of civilians would do just fine using their personally-owned weapons in the service, if needed. The civilians would, in fact, be better armed and prepared than the average Army specialist who’s stuck with an rifle that’s had any number of prior users ahead of him who did God knows what with it.”

    That’s not necessarily true. MANY civilians would be better prepared, MANY would not.

    The truth is that civilians are our last line of defense against foreign aggression. We may not have an imminent threat of invasion…today. In generations to come that may change.

    Personally, I think automatic weapons are a waste of ammunition. I prefer semi-automatic. It makes for good debate fodder but it’s not a huge issue for me. Just sayin’

    • Full auto weapons are the tipping point though. When you have them, you can change the course of battle quickly.
      Same argument now stretches to drones and even NASA. If you “own” space, you iwn everything underneath it.

      • Well, we’ve “owned” space since the late 1960’s, and we keep getting bloodied up pretty badly in one third-world shithole after another. Maybe it’s not such an overwhelming advantage against determined guerrillas, after all.

        • The problem is not that we don’t have an overwhelming advantage.

          The problem is that we lack the will to use it.

          Unlike Rome, which was capable of recognizing a persistent threat and utterly ending it, we believe that warfare should have rules and that we should be as nice as possible about it. Hence why we keep getting our nose bloodied in every overseas adventure we have no business entering into. End a few conflicts the way Rome ended Carthage and things would be rather different.

        • we don’t “own space” now, China is the main space-race super-power and could easily drop a rock on your head from orbit. [Multi-stage to orbit technology got to China through LORAL, in the 1990s, from Bill Clinton, who with Hillary funded campaigns with the proceeds of what American technology and intelligence they have given away.]

          We used to own space, I don’t know if anyone worried about us dropping anything on them, but that’s no reason to abdicate the theater-role and pay broke=di<K rogue nations for launch capabilities that we've funded the design.

    • The machine gun changed the way wars are fought . A semi auto has a good output of fire but is limited when it comes to capacity of a belt fed and the ability to swap barrels on the fly. If FA were legal I wouldn’t care for a full auto rifle, but a real M240 is a whole different story.

      • I’ve only read through about half of the comments here so far, but nobody’s mentioned how simple/difficult it is to transform an off-the-shelf AR-15 into a select fire weapon.

        I know it’s simple enough to do so with a GLOCK, just by swapping out the slide plate (which is ILLEGAL, so don’t do it), with no gunsmithing skill whatsoever. That’s even mentioned prominently on the ATF’s own website. Sure, that’s a handgun, but there are also perfectly legal conversion kits to transform your semi-auto handgun into a pistol caliber carbine, just by replacing the slide. Combine those two concepts and ta da! You have a full auto PCC, with exceptional skill required. So how tough would that be with an AR?

        Machine a small piece here, swap out a small piece there. Couldn’t that be done in virtually any garage? Isn’t that already done with AKs in various caves around the world?

        This idea of use of severe disparity of firepower seems bogus to me. Even when you factor in drones, nukes, and B-52s. The U.S. Government isn’t going to indiscriminately slaughter Americans by the millions with shock and awe. Hell, we don’t even really do that with our enemies overseas, instead desperately and self-defeatingly avoiding excessive casualties lest we upset the delicate sensibilities of the “Arab street.”

        There will be no protracted, years long carnage in any Civil War II. The worst there would be is a few skirmishes, the gore of which would flood the Internet, followed by half the government stepping down and/or fleeing the country as every federal building including in Washington is overrun by armed civilians.

        • >> The U.S. Government isn’t going to indiscriminately slaughter Americans by the millions with shock and awe.

          In any realistic scenario where you’d actually see civilians getting into mass scale gunfights with government troops, this is in fact exactly what the US govt will do.

        • They are called Lightning links and Drop In Auto Sears.

          @int19h I agree. You would see far more liberal rules of engagement used against American civilians than you saw against Afghani Taliban.

        • The unfortunate truth is that the technology that makes our lives so convenient has also enabled numerous overlapping programs to compile digital dossiers on us with little to no human input necessary. Virtually everything you do is vacuumed up into massive databases. Using algorithms to parse this data for certain criteria, they are able to compile an hierarchy of lists of potential threats. For those of you imagining the manpower necessary to do this, at this point there is likely little to no human input necessary until any number certain specific criteria are net.

          Being that they are monitoring the entirety of the backbone of the internet, and there is actually incredibly sophisticated software that allows them to (more-or-less) accurately forecast “the Human Terrain” of behavioral patterns; they will know when people are actually to the point of fighting back before most of us do. They will probably round up the biggest threats first to internment centers. You could use your imagination as to who these people might be. Maybe Special Forces Vets who visit III% blogs and websites. Maybe people who talked the biggest game on gun forums and right-wing or conservative message boards. Or, people who have been involved in militias, people on extremists sites…you get the drift.

          Each State has Law Enforcement Fusion Centers that allow an alphabet soup of FEDGOV agencies to interact with all State and regional Law Enforcement Agencies. This is probably where these warrants for detainment would be issued from. Is this what Jade Helm was? A dry run?

          • In a hypothetical world where the US government would actually decide to go full retard fascist, you’re entirely correct. I deal with “big data” stuff in my day to day job, and the kinds of things that are possible given today’s compute power and the sheer volume of data are both incredible and uncanny – and what I see is the mundane, public stuff. Given the peek that Snowden gave us at the kind of data gathering capacity of NSA, and what we know about the size of their data processing centers, I can only imagine how much they can glean from it all.

            It also means that pretty much any resistance that would at any point be organized through the Internet, or is based on personal ties that can be traced via the Internet or any other sort of electronic communications, is basically compromised from the get go – in fact, as you rightly point out, probably even before it even consciously becomes such a thing. So if you’re reading this comment on this here website, forget all these notions of joining a freedom fighting militia and showing them: you’re already on the list, and if it comes to that, your ass will be in the camp long before there is an active militia, and if you are so paranoid that you even manage to make a glorious last stand instead of being flashbanged and handcuffed in the middle of the night, it will be a very short and lonely one.

            Heck, if I were the dictator in charge of Police State USA, and wanted to make sure my reign would last, the very first thing I’d do is tell the NSA guys to run a simple google search on any mention of the phrase “molon labe” online, and flag anyone posting that as terrorists for local SWAT teams to deal with. That’s for a start – we can go from there and extend it to phrases like, say, “my cold dead hands”, and once we’re done with that we can go for the more sneaky expressions of rebel spirit, like e.g. “repeal NFA”. Needless to say, any Facebook groups about “3%” and such are basically ready-made detention lists. Oh, GOA membership list, too, and anyone who ever donated (credit card records are handy for that).

        • “and if you are so paranoid that you even manage to make a glorious last stand instead of being flashbanged and handcuffed in the middle of the night, it will be a very short and lonely one.”

          If every 100th encounter resulted in a loss of a fascist, they would run out of troops in a short span. You don’t give our sheer numbers enough credit.

        • Irish????? Lol

          Would that be the same high powered predictive analytics infrastructure that missed the rise of ISIS? That concluded they were just the JV team? Or is that the one that let the Boston Marathon bombers roam free or the underwear bomber board a plane, despite our having been tipped off about both?
          If the federal government cannot be bothered to check their terrorist tipster hotline’s voicemail and follow up on obvious-at-the-time leads, then you’ll forgive me for being underwhelmed by their supposed power to hoover up, assess and transform into actionable intelligence every bit, byte, and nibble on the ‘net. Good grief.

          As for the wholesale civilian slaughter of your morbid imaginations, sorry, that also isn’t going to happen. Hell, this government just backed down in the Nevada desert. This government held back in Ferguson. This government actually encouraged rioters in Baltimore. And you think they’ll roll through Cheka-style? That’s funny.

          • What makes you believe the government didn’t knew about any or even all of these things?

            One thing that works about it is that it’s a large bureaucracy. A system might flag someone in the database, but it then takes many hours of humans looking through the records and writing reports, then someone at a higher level looking at it and writing a report, etc until it gets to the person actually making the decision.

            But dictatorships, now, they tend to slim such things down. Maybe not much else, but the state security for sure. Where you’d have multiple layers of reviews before, you would now have a single low-level operative making a decision.

            I would also point out that the rise of ISIS, at least, is not really meaningful in this context because it happened outside of the USA, and in countries where there’s no developed high-tech surveillance infrastructure. You have to get your intel the old fashioned way there, through human agents.

            Also note that I didn’t say anything about this government. I said, “in a hypothetical world where the US government would actually decide to go full fascist”. Presumably, it would be a very different government at that point (sorry, I don’t share all this “Obama is a Muslim dictator” tripe).

    • “Personally, I think automatic weapons are a waste of ammunition. I prefer semi-automatic.”

      This is why most people don’t realize that bump stocks are better than full auto. It’s expensive, so they never practice, so it’s just a toy to them… I can point shoot a torso to 50 years without even using my sights with my .308 Saiga + Bumpski. I’m shocked by how much better connected I am to my rifle, and how accurate my instinctive shooting has become.

      You also don’t have to flip a switch to go from aimed single shot kills to “Oh shit, there’s too many!” If I find myself in need of spray, there won’t be any pray added on to the end. It’s an expensive skill to learn, but absolutely worth it. Don’t let the cost of blowing through ammo like that hold you back and leave bump stocks relegated to the realm of toys…

      The difference it’s made in my “the rifle is just an extension of me” is extreme. It’s very personal.

      • Can you explain in more detail how exactly a bump fire stock is better than an actual full auto action? You seem to be implying something, but I can’t quite figure it out (perhaps I haven’t ever shot such a thing).

        • Slower rate of fire than FA, easier to control muzzle rise, and easier to control number of rounds fired. Then again, the primary purpose of full auto is suppressive fire, not individual targets, or large volumes of fire against mass attacks (which are quite rare with all of the FA rifles and machine guns in use).

        • What Mark N said, along with no need to flip a switch to get it… Just pull… I can even vary my rate of fire, and use my left hand almost like a magic wand of death pointing… I don’t even use my sights anymore and I’m wicked accurate.

    • While it’s fairly well known that a mere 10% (+/-) of Americans actually engaged in battle during the American War for Independence, even fewer people are aware that a mere 8% (+/-) of the entire US military are actually ‘combat arms’: i.e. the ‘trigger-pullers’.

      “Personally, I think automatic weapons are a waste of ammunition. I prefer semi-automatic.”

      The Marine Corps somewhat agrees with you, seeing as how it was the Marines behind the implementation of the three-shot “Burst-Fire” feature when Colt was “prodded” towards the development of the “product-improved” M16A2, instead of the traditional “(Full)AUTO” feature.

      Few people are aware that during the Vietnam conflict era, Colt actually had versions (Models 605B & 606B) of the M16A1 equipped with a four-position fire selector: “SAFE”, “BURST” (2- or 3-shot; depending on the burst cam installed) “AUTO” & “SEMI”.

      • >> The Marine Corps somewhat agrees with you, seeing as how it was the Marines behind the implementation of the three-shot “Burst-Fire” feature when Colt was “prodded” towards the development of the “product-improved” M16A2, instead of the traditional “(Full)AUTO” feature.

        Which is probably one of the worst “upgrades” in the history of that weapon. It made the trigger group heavier, and uneven depending on which stage of the burst it is at. You can actually fire fewer than three rounds if you don’t hold the trigger for long enough, and worse yet, if you do so, it doesn’t reset; so if you spank off two rounds, let the trigger reset and press it again you’ll only get one – hope you didn’t actually need a burst.

        Then again, most of things that were done to M16A2 on the insistence of USMC brass was similarly poorly thought out (or rather well thought out for the wrong job – they were trying to make it a competition rifle instead of a battle rifle). The longer A2 stock, which made for a perfect sideways range posture, but is very awkward with armor, and for some even without. The new rear sight, which adds the rather useless range adjustment (seriously, who uses it other than Marines themselves when they qualify at 400?) at the cost of significant added complexity making the adjustment prone to jamming. The new windage adjustment knob which is so much easier to accidentally turn without noticing. The weird choice of apertures, where one is way too big, prompting most everyone to use the other, which is way too small for a generic choice.

        The sad part is that Army noticed most of these things and complained about them, but they were ignored.

  3. Better off to choose targets and loose one round at a time. If the SHTF and we need to take up arms as private citizens, ammo will be at a premium and “spray and pray” would be a huge waste of precious resources.

    • Practice your spraying so that there be less praying… Most people treat bump stocks like a toy that costs lots of money in ammo. Sure, it costs lots of money in ammo, but it’s only a toy because you let that expense hold you back… They’re actually better than real full-autos if you, you know, actually learn how to use them well…

  4. As a former Army Infantry soldier, we got very little training on using the three round burst on the M4. It was more of a way to get rid of ammo on the range fast so we can go back quicker…

    • 3-round burst was a stupid notion concocted to “save” ammo in a fire fight.

      Except that letting off the trigger @ the 2nd of 3 rounds only gets you the 3rd of (last of the) 3 rounds on your next trigger pull. NOT HANDY.

      Full-auto fire for most general military small arms training is mostly for familiarization. But in squad tactics, riflemen may use it if a planned ambush encounters an excessive amount of enemy, or to cause havoc, or to break contact with the enemy.
      One of the times you would most like to have full-auto fire capability is when you are taking full-auto fire, at close range, from superior numbers or from a superior position. Like Benghazi, the Chalie Hebbdo attacks…

  5. Perhaps these tax payer paid Phd’s can also discuss the negative side of the 4th and 5th amendments. Many of them already have made negative comments about the first amendment. Perhaps they will publicly state the Supreme Court was correct when it stated black people had no right to firearms.

  6. I would also disagree with the author, in that our semi-auto AKs and ARs are equal in capability to that of the military. Plus, the average hunter owns a large caliber rifle with a powerful scope, and there are probably way more .50 cal rifles in circulation on the civilian side.

    However, we could always use some grenades or mortars…

    • After SHTF, you can have all the mortars, tanks, and fighter jets you can take, or that your military friends and family will give you. Which is why they would all be locked away and no threat to anyone.

      • Yeah, but the drones overhead will no longer be ‘ours’ and even a noisy Apache can strike from a stand-off distance that mostly denies detection.

        You’d have to fight the enemy in the urban centers where they live (NY, CHI, Seattle, Miami, LA, Boston, (let’s just say all of New England) D.C. [’cause it’s hard to find liberal POS gun-grabbers in sufficient quantities to waste your time anywhere else]) to hope they would prevent their own collateral damage.

        Then you’d have to gear up to fight off everyone else trying to kick us while we’re down (i.e., like in Syria, Libya, Croatia, etc., etc., etc.).

        • Drones aren’t all that hard to make. Garage-made drones have been used in Ukraine by both sides, though mostly for recon.

  7. #civvylivesmatter

    Where can I get my Support the Civvies ribbon bumper sticker?

    If civvies are off fighting wars, who’s paying the taxes?

  8. With over 10 million AR pattern rifles in citizen’s hands and tens of millions of scoped, bolt action 308s, 30-06s and 270s in circulation, how many “boots on the ground” would it take to “pacify” the entire country?

    • And where would you find them? Among the panty-wetting liberals? Because the men who are willing to fight for freedom would be wearing their boots for the other side.

      • 1. You’re assuming that liberals don’t have guns (and ammo, and armor etc). You’re wrong. We’re few, but we exist.

        2. You’re assuming there would only be two sides. You’re almost certainly wrong. There would be at least three, with the third being those who just stand back and try to not get in the way; but possibly more.

  9. Historically insurgents or rebels, have never been as well armed as occupying or invading forces. And yet they have done rather well.

    Recently watch the movie Zulu, I think that I’ve got the title correct, the one with Peter O’Toole. British forces armed with muskets and canon, defeated by Zulus with spears. Yes they were overwhelmingly outnumbered, but that would be the exact situation for any invading or occupied force in America. Over 300 million gun owning households. What army would consist of over 300 million. A rifle behind every clump of grass.

    • 300 million gun owning households? There isn’t even 300 million households in the US. There is a little over 300 million firearms in civilian hands but those are mostly owned by 40% of the population or less…

      • I’m pretty sure that many of those non-gun-owning households would rapidly learn the value of the “extra” AR-15 that their real American neighbor was willing to sell to them when the rubber meets the road…

        Since polymer 80% lowers became available, I’ve got so many AR-15s it’s stupid… I’ve only fired one of them, and that was with black powder hand loads just to see if it would work.

    • “Zulu,” with Stanley Baker and Michael Caine among others (but no Peter O’Toole) is a fictionalized account of the Battle of Rorke’s Draft. 150 British soldiers with their rifles held off an army of 4000 Zulus with their spears. Rifles usually trump spears.

      • “Zulu Dawn” was a prequel made 15 years after Zulu. It had O’toole and Burt Lancaster and Bob Hoskins amongst others.

        It showed the massacre that happened right before Rourke’s Drift.

        Yes, rifle trumps spear. And having to rely on battlefield pickups as your only source of arms and ammo is not a good idea either.

      • While the movie “Zulu” was _somewhat_ “fictionalized”, the battle itself actually occurred:

        The Battle of Rorke’s Drift

        You will note that the main reason Chard’s “troops” survived the attack was that the Zulu commander observed Lord Chelmsford’s relief column approaching and “beat feet” outta there.

        BTW: the Zulus also had a small number of rifles, and used them in the roll of “snipers”.

    • The Brits weren’t armed with muskets. They had Remington Rolling Block breach loaders.

      • No, they didn’t. The 24th had Martini-Henry .450-577 caliber rifles. The rolling block Remington was never standard issue to the British regulars. Some of their puppet states, like egypt, bought and issued Remingtons.

        The rolling block was a huge success for big green.

  10. “The civilians would, in fact, be better armed and prepared than the average Army specialist who’s stuck with an rifle that’s had any number of prior users ahead of him who did God knows what with it.”

    Not really. The AR-15/M16/M4 platform visits the armorer so frequently that it’s is nearly a new gun every few years. The point of it is to be a cash cow for parts contractors. Look what that free money did to Colt! Welfare rots ’em…

    I prefer my pair of M85s over my closet full of AR-15s. Kalishnakov platform. NATO magazines and ammo. Pistol, not SBR BS… I have some in 7.62×39 as well. And a Saiga in .308 with a bump stock…

    The AR-15 platform is a toy, at best. I like them, they’re fun, but they’re not for serious people. They require constant babysitting.

    Learn to use a bump stock. You’ll get better results than an actual full-auto due to the off-hand being used to stress the motion. It’s almost like pointing your finger and putting the bullets right there. Most people treat their bump stocks like a toy that costs too much to shoot. They don’t realize how excellent it really can be… Recoil? If you’re doing it right, there is no recoil and no muzzle rise, thanks to the work that off-hand has to do to fire it at all… I’ve fired full-auto MP5s, P90s, M16s, AK-47s, M240s, M249s, the list goes on. Nothing is as controllable as my Saigas, .223 and .308, with a bump stock.

  11. “Civilians no longer expect to use their household weapons for militia duty,…”

    Absolutely wrong. The point to the second amendment was to ensure the militia, as a non-government controlled or regulated entity, would always have access to weapons suitable for military use. The people were not to have their right to keep and bear arms, because without that there can be no well-regulated militia—– the militia is dependent on and limited by the personally owned weapons of the people.

  12. “Wolverines!” Look what a bunch of kids did to the Russians/ Cubans(or North Korean for the new movie)

    not gonna lie kind of suprised noone has made this refernce yet.

    • BINGO! Oft times the “insurgents” do well against the “regulars.” Just look at the Mujahideen vs. the Red Army in Afghanistan.

      BTW: an old friend of mine portrayed the “Russian Paratroop Commander”-turned-“Russian Tank Commander” (shown as “Tank Survivor” in the “Cast” list) in the original (1984) version of “Red Dawn.” Fred and Milius are long-time ‘buds’.

      He was also the “Spiritual Advisor” in 1982’s “Conan the Barbarian.” 🙂

      • Oy, seriously?

        “BINGO! Oft times the “insurgents” do well against the “regulars.” Just look at the Mujahideen vs. the Red Army in Afghanistan”


        We trained the Mujahedeen, and we armed them. Russia returned the favor in every one of our efforts since. (Not sure who started it, don’t care)

  13. We keep hearing the argument that civilians and our weapons are no match for the military if push came to shove. Even if our weapons are no match for the militay’s, how many military personnel would turn on the government if they were ordered to fight civilians. I personally think we might have a similar situation as to what happened in Libya with large portions of the military defecting and fighting against the government.

    • A lot of people forget that the military is staffed by people like you and me, many of whom would refuse orders to use force on the civilian population of the United States. A good portion of them would go AWOL, and some would bring their toys with them.

      The first day the balloon goes up and the government (overtly) turns on the citizenry, the rebel forces will be mostly equipped with semi-automatic rifles. After the second day, the rebel forces will be equipped with much more sophisticated hardware from captured and stolen military stocks.

      Also, the internet is a wonderful thing. I suspect files concerning the construction of drop-in auto sears and the other modifications needed to convert semi-auto rifles to select-fire will become very popular downloads.

      Barring indiscriminate bombing and the use of nuclear/chemical/biological weapons by the government, a second civil war wouldn’t be the one-sided fight the antis often predict when they question pro-2A people about why they “need” a black rifle.

      • As a side note, the antis love to bring up tanks and aircraft. It’s well known that a few bottles of flammable liquid can stop a tank. Aircraft are only effective when they’re flying. I’ve NEVER seen one that didn’t spend much more time on the ground.
        I do agree that many would go AWOL and bring lots of equipment along.

  14. Except for when one wants to kill everyone in a room or a trench very quickly, there’s not much difference between an AR with full auto and one without.

    Now when we get into actual MGs, that’s where we see a massive qualitative difference. A platoon with 1 or 2 GPMGs and 6-8 LMGs, and riflemen with semi-auto ARs is much better armed than one with all riflemen with auto ARs and no MGs.

  15. Insurgents often win despite being outgunned. “The conventional army loses if it does not win. The guerrilla wins if he does not lose.” Henry A. Kissinger.

    It’s not always true, but it’s true enough.

  16. The obvious point is at this juncture is that 85% of the Army wouldn’t follow such an immoral order against The People, leaving only 40k to 50k Tory bastards for us to fight. AF may be 70/30 (seems to be more Leftists in their ranks) but I’d be damned if 2 Marines joined a tyrannical gov’t. Best believe that equipment would be sequestered by all the forces loyal to the Constitution (The People).

  17. Between my SKS, my FN Fal, and my many other weapons, I feel very good about being ready for the time the SHTF..
    Plus I started stocking up on ammo long ago before the faux shortage crisis..

  18. “It’s not the crate, it’s the man in the crate” so said Manfred von Richtofen. Military effectiveness is not about toosl, it’s about people. The two most important factors in ground combat are leadership and unit cohesion. The Militia failed because it lacked both traits. You can’t develop these qualities drilling one day a month. You have to live it 24/7. When they send a National Guard unit overseas the unit goes through an extended preparation period.

    Plattsburg was the last real battle where Militia forces were deployed. They were assigned a key river ford guarding the rear of the American position from a British flanking attack. At the first sign of the British force they ran away. Fortunately, the British Commander was unaware of this when his naval force was destroyed on Lake Champlain and he recalled the force. Had he pushed on upstate New York would now be part of Canada. After the War of 1812 we abandoned the militia concept in favor of a small cadre regular army and volunteers. The militia was relegated to the draft pool. Today’s National Guard are formally the militia but are really a standing force of US Volunteers.

    Hopefully the unorganized militia will never be forced to show up with their own weapons but the fact that many of them are familiar with AR patterned rifle and this will make training then easier when they are called up via the draft.

    • “…but the fact that many of them are familiar with AR patterned rifle and this will make training then easier when they are called up via the draft.”

      That was _exactly_ the concept behind the creation of the “National Board for the Promotion of Rifle Practice (in America)”; aka: “Directorate for Civilian Marksmanship”, now the “Civilian Marksmanship Program”; back in 1903: same time the “National Guard” was created by the “Dick Act.”

  19. Why would I want or need a full auto? Didn’t use the auto switch when I did have one. Yes, 2nd amendment rights are of utmost importance, but full auto anything is extreme. Keep pushing the boundaries of your rights over the concerns of others and you will find yourself with nothing. My understanding is full autos are legal, under certain conditions to be met. Best leave well enough alone. Civilians have a right to self defense and the firearms to accomplish that with. Believe me, firearms today are quite capable enough using rapid fire. One day, perhaps soon, it will take only a stroke of a pen to make all firearm owners criminals. Extremist of any side have one thing in common, they would be tyrants in power.

    • “My understanding is full autos are legal, under certain conditions to be met.”

      You need to expand your understanding.

      Not fighting for a thing will result in gaining it, but fighting for it will result in it’s total loss? When and where has this EVER been true?

  20. In a civil war against our govm’t the rebels will conduct 4th generation warfare, i.e., selected govm’t officials connected with the tyranny would be sniped and IED’d out of the picture. So maybe scoped bolt-action hunting rifles would be the weapon of choice. Also, I doubt seriously that more than a slight minority of our armed forces and police would obey orders to fire on their countrymen.
    In any event, all restrictions on full auto firearms should be lifted. I want my Thompson !

  21. Here’s where california is so wrong. If I had to use a ca legal rifle in combat… I’d be a joke. It’d be comedic, I’d almost be just as effective with a quality katana and slingshot. Maybe bow and arrow if I hone my skills enough. 10 round magazines are bad enough, trying to manipulate a bullet button in combat is a great way for california to get me killed. Or for california to kill me. Whichever it may be

    • The first ten rounds would go well…

      Also, I think that’s kinda the point of the laws in ca.

  22. You blog monkeys seriously crack me up. Militia…i.e. the ones who on their best Revolutionary war day would get off one maybe two rounds before turning to run. Militia…who would desert the army in droves for lack of food and clothing. Milita who Washington would complain that a only a professional army and French control of American waters would defeat the British. Which was the solution after eight years of limited engagements.

    War is a nasty business and if you think an average Joe is ready with his AR or AK to defend liberty or his own freedom, then you have more faith in the comon man than I do.

    • Depends on the intelligence behind the Rules of Engagement. To begin with, do not engage closer than 400 yards with superior elevation, fire 20 rounds and git, but take your gun with you, and set up an ambush 30 minutes away, to kill the few who will still be following. 3 or 4 times and all GIs already on the fence will desert. Which, if your cause is just (and not just nuts) will be around 80% of them. Then do not accept terms, execute the government which violated the constitution by sending federal troops against civilian Americans. All of them.

    • “You blog monkeys seriously crack me up”

      Blog ‘monkeys’ like you make me laugh.

      Historically, insurgents win far more often than lose.

      And that’s the fact, Jack.

  23. Fourth generation warfare is a made up term by Ralph Peters to describe how wars are fought with legalistic rules of engagement. ROEs can be changed with a stroke of a pen and voila we are back to third generation warfare.

  24. First-Despite the expense related to it, I believe that “happiness is a belt fed weapon.”

    Second-When I think about the militia, I think of the NOT-professional soldiers with minimal training. I don’t expect them to do fire-and-maneuver assaults on enemy positions. That is what the professional grunts are for. Do I think they will “need” full auto? Probably not. Do I want to limit their ability to buy/own/possess/use full auto? HELL NO!

    • Unfortunately:

      Hollis v. Lynch, et al., Case Number 3:2014cv03872

      August 7, 2015 #45

      Opinion or Order of the Court MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER:
      For the reasons stated, the Defendants’ 12(b)(1) 13 Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff’s Second Amendment (“Count I”) and Commerce Clause (“Count II”) claims for lack of standing is GRANTED, and those claims are DISMISSED. Defendants’ 13 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff’s due process (“Count III”), equal protection (“Count IV”), and Plaintiff’s alternative request for declaratory relief that § 922(o) does not apply to Plaintiff or the Hollis Trust (Dkt. No. 1 3) is GRANTED, and those claims are DISMISSED with prejudice. Plaintiff’s Motion for Discovery under Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(d) is DENIED as moot.
      (Ordered by Judge Barbara M.G. Lynn on 8/7/2015)


  25. Reality? Full auto in a shoulder fired rifle is really just a waste-ammo switch. But Congress had no authority to close the tax stamp registry to any new entries. That should be challenged. The NFA1934 as unconstitutional as it seems, at least does not go so far as to actually BAN anything, because the writers of that law recognized that it would be voided under constitutional challenge because the constitution give the federal government power to ban nothing, only to levy a tax.

    The semi-auto rifles would do just fine. Slidefire-type stocks have given people an option for a squad auto-matic. So that’s fine. But the reality is that the US militia has no chance against a standing army employing combined arms. There’s no law enforcement agency in the US that wouldn’t be swarmed and overrun, but the actual military really does have area effect weaponry that completely negates that tactic.

    The only way to beat the military is to include them in the uprising.

  26. Though I believe law-abiding Americans should be allowed to own full-auto firearms I for one am relieved they aren’t as popular as semi’s. “Why?” you may ask, well many gun owners have enough problems keeping an adequate supply of ammo on their shelves at home right now, can you imagine what it would be like if full-auto’s were common?

    • Having done it, when I did not have to pay for the ammo anyway, I can tell you that 1 or 2 mag dumps on full auto, and you’re back shooting semi-auto and trying to actually hit something. Ammo cost is negligible.

  27. One can own a full auto firarms in this country. You must live in a state that allows ownership, and acquire the $200.00 Tax Stamp issued by ATF&E. For each unit to be acquired.

    “…… You must be 21 to purchase a machine gun in the US. The following states allow private ownership of machine guns if registered with ATF: AL, AK, AZ, AR, CO, CT, FL, GA, ID, IN, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, WV, WI, WY. Some states have their own registration requirements, but most just say you have to have it registered with ATF.

    Any machine gun that can be privately owned has to have been manufactured and registered prior to May, 1986……”

    • … and start around $20,000. Without that silliness from ’86, a dozen different companies will sell you select-fire lowers starting around $600, effectively the same price as semiauto lowers. Difference in cost of production is negligible.

  28. Civilians no longer expect to use their household weapons for militia duty, although they still keep and bear arms to hunt ducks which is why they should only have O/U shotguns.
    I still say the real purpose of the 2A was to enumerate the right for civilians to have military weapons and engage in paramilitary training if desired for a system of checks and balances of the Constitution. The NFA is unconstitutional.
    With 300 million guns floating around the country ( even though many are not military grade), a determined populace could overwhelm the troops and police loyal to any dictator.

  29. Yup, no question that the cost per unit is, somewhat, outside of the wallet of most gun owners. There is also the question as to the reality of owning a full auto firearm. It dosnt serve the majority of needs or requirements for 99.9% of the civilian firearms community. That also goes for a fair percentage the LE community I’d think as well. Outside of SWAT, HRT, TRU and other like units, full auto firearms may be considered dangerous in the hands of untrained LEO’s.
    Oh yes! Firing a platform at full auto will put a smile on ones face. Crew served or sub-gun, the act of putting that much terminal energy down range is empowering. The cost of buying, Tax Stamp, and security is only the start. Even if your doing your own reloading these platforms aren’t cost efficient.
    Guess what I’m saying here is if you want one, live in a state that will let you own one, have the bank account to acquire it and the ability to support its habit, and just can’t live without it …. Then by all means get it. If you do, see about getting some training in handling it safely, just a thought.
    If you don’t have that kind of cash, may be a $350.00 bump-fire system might butter your bread.
    My POV from personal expierance and from the stories of those I trust and admire is that semi auto is effective for most situations and aimed and controlled semi auto fire is very effective for the rest.
    An armed … Anything (invasion, attack, Revolution, civil war, defensive or offensive, enemies forian or domesric and/or anything else) In this country would be of a magnatude unpresediented in the history of armed national conflcts. The number of firearms in privet ownership make any such interaction impossible to plan or predict.
    I’d also suggest that a fairly skilled hunter, fielding a modern hunting rifle is a force not to be taken lightly in any such incident.
    Their are any number of divergent paths from this point that may be followed and discussed. I’m sure that some will. Others will find fault with my comment some may even agree.
    The point to be take away here it that if you want to you can, at least for now, legally own such a platform should you wish, in many parts of the country.
    For me, I’ll take the semi’s I have and part of that $20 to 30 Grand price tag an apply it towards additional munitions and reloading supplies.

    • Pre-1986 full auto weapons are life limited and destined for a safe-queen spot or the trash, so they only get more expensive. Which is why i’m glad to hear others who are interested in overcoming that infringing legislation now.
      Consider that, I could convert a Century G91/G93 to full auto for $49. The ONLY thing protecting any of you from me doing so is my desire to not break the law. So you can’t claim you are ‘protecting’ ME from anything, and we’re not even talking about the possibility of illeagal (violent) “use” of any such firearm.
      (Hypothetically) If I posted here, my picture, address, automobile license plate, and my intention/threat to do you harm with a weapon that i had converted to full-auto [or even with one I purchased legally, and obtained the tax stamp]. It is likely that I’d be able to get the job done before interdicted by the ATF or a LEO, so it is fallacious to claim that the NFA rules are protecting either of us.

  30. Yep I think we’d do OK. I can’t afford full auto anyway. And for the chatter about ZULU-Hernando Cortez and 325 Spaniards conquered millions of Aztecs with match-locks(or was it wheel-locks)? I’ll take gunpowder over stone-age weapons anytime…

  31. Large numbers of gun owners is one advantage to be reckoned with and to tell you the truth, I’d rather be shot with a full metal jacket .223 than an expanding bullet 270 or 7mm deer rifle semi-automatic. Btw, many of us have AR’s anyway. What makes anyone think that the modern day gun owner would be nothing much to deal with?

  32. The NFA Act need an complete repeal of 5.1 from 6 sections :

    – SBS
    – SBR
    – Automatic (yes repeal not only re opening the register)
    – AoW
    – Suppressors
    – Big Bore Destructive device only 2 section abc substances can still keep in regulation but not under fed only under state if he want it.

    FED away yesterday please
    Every adult person thats over 21 and not mental ill should own and carry every unregistered weapon on every public place as airplanes, school ect.

    No Compromiss, start one and you have lost !!

  33. I’d rather not have a full auto anyway. Most people can’t hit a thing with them anyway.

    A few weeks back I shot standing unsupported at a target 100 meters away and fired all 30 rounds in about 35-40 seconds and put all of the rounds in the chest of the target. I’ll do alright.

  34. Thanks all above for a lively, interesting and encouraging discussion.

    I am good with semi-auto fire being effective in combat, but fully support the repeal of NFA 1934.

    I do still have reservations about raising an effective Army of Civilian Militias in the case of a contemporary uprising. It seems improbably complicated.

  35. In terms of rifles (not heavy machine guns or squad automatic weapons), semi automatic is actually preferable in most cases to full auto. I’m a civilian contractor in Afghanistan at the moment, and was at the range with some SOF folks recently. One of these guys, who has apparently gotten in many gunfights, was showing me his M4 that he has customized in several ways, including some modifications that have rendered it semi-only. He told me he has never really used full auto with his M4.

  36. the revolutionary war was fought by civilians. I will defend the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, in particular the phrase “shall not infringe”. Democrat, Republican they are the SAME coin and we are have been on a downhill slope and neither party has stopped the inflation, deflation or the ations.
    No double standards put the DC politicians on Obamacare and SS and then lets see where it goes.
    Thanks for your support and vote.Pass the word.

  37. “they would need if called to serve in the militia, “????

    No one has ever been CALLED into a militia! Militias are VOLUNTARY.

    • False. See the Militia Act of 1792 with its “Musket Mandate.” Most State Constitutions of the era specifically stated that all male citizens in specific age groups are members of the Militia. I belive Virginia”s Constitution still contains this clause. That is why private groups like the Virginia Citizens Militia are legal. They are are already members of the State Militia and can be called on by the governor in an emergency. When he does this become subject to the UCMJ.

      • Yes it is. Every draft has operated within the framework of the militia system. Draft boards were state entities. The Federal government merely issued draft quotas. just as they did for organizef molitia units. The draft is nothing more than a call up of the unorganized militia.

  38. Don’t be absurd – the average group of civilian gun owners would have their clocks cleaned by the most middle of the road soldiers. The civilian rifleman-behind-every-blade-of-grass theory is pure Hollywood fantasy. Professional combat arms had moved far beyond the level of a pick-up-game.

    • In a conventional fight, if the servicememebers are backed by CAS, mortar, artillery, etc, then yes. But in a straight up fight where both sides are constrained to firearms, I wouldn’t be too sure about that.

      It would also depend on what type of civilians you are facing. Experienced ones aren’t going to stick around on equal ground to fight pursuing Soldiers.

    • Parker, what if there were more people with professional combat experience that are civilians than exists in the military?

    • I don’t understand why people think that once a soldier musters out, he forgets everything he has ever learned and/or lived about combat. “Veteran” does not apply only to grizzled old men (God bless them!) from WWII or the Korean War. That 32 year old in his prime who just spent three tours in Afghanistan is just as much a veteran. Or that Iraqi vet that was the commander of an Abrams. In a civilian resistance, our military will have likely trained a large number of their opposition.

      And no, it’s not just a Hollywood fantasy. Looking at the way the Federal government has been eliminating the military, focusing on drones, stripping the State militias and militarizing the bureaucracy, I think they recognize the danger, as well.

      • Because it’s not about the individual – it’s about the team. And, more importantly, team training. An individual – even a veteran – lasts about 10 minutes and goes winchester on ineffective fire. Those are the facts. The below-average soldier today is far more effective than the best Vietnam or WWII or Korea soldiers. Any they are far and away more effective than 99.9% of the folks who have watched Red Dawn or Rambo a few too many times.

        • Mr. Parker, you seem to be making a strange assumption that veterans, having worked on teams before, and created their own teams before, would not effectively do so again. Moreover, quite a few of us have training teaching non-military individuals effective squad level tactics, all around the world. Why would we not do so at home with the people we know and who we shoot and hunt with regularly?

          As an aside, having been a soldier recently, and having been trained by some of those veterans of previous conflicts you speak of, I have to say your assessment of their tactics and capabilities are far from accurate.

    • The last thing on my mind is to rise up against my government at this point but I don’t rule out the day it could happen, though probably not in my lifetime. However, to act like the civilian population will line up against military soldiers serving at the time for and all out battle is absurd. That is a very simplistic view of how it would play out. Some of it has been discussed here already. Nobody is saying the civilian losses wouldn’t be great. But look around the world and see how hard it is to defeat fighters within a population. How the military would react during a crisis like that is very unpredictable. What is it with some of you? Do you suggest just giving up our 2nd amendment rights because you think it’s hopeless to disrupt modern tyranny?

  39. Well, this weekend I had an experience that has someone lowered my thoughts about full auto. I cleaned and lubed my Grandmother’s old rifle and took it to the range. After testing it, I turned my 12 year old son loose on it. First time with it, he’s quickly getting consistent 4″ grouping at 25 and 50 yards with aimed shots at 3-5 second rate of fire.

    Here’s the catch. This is a Steven’s Springfield 53A. It’s .22 (LR, long or short). Single shot, bolt action. Dovetail iron sights. No extractor but your fingernail. Oh, and you have to manually cock the striker for each shot. Load, lock, cock, aim, shoot, unlock, flick, tip, repeat. And every shot a kill shot at a good rate of fire.

    My point? Underestimate “civilian” arms at your peril.

  40. Full auto fire is only useful for those with the logistic train capable of a steady stream of replacement ammo.
    Unlikely in a revolutionary warfare scenario.
    If Citizens end up fighting their own government/military, it will be via guerrilla/insurgent warfare, not open
    “fire and maneuver” type of combat (where automatic fire “keeps their heads down”, while another element
    moves to a flanking position.)
    IED and sniper initiated ambushes in populated areas, followed by quick disengagement will be the rule for
    the revolutionary fighter. Fight long enough- the army will send reinforcements. Fight out in the
    open, and drones, artillery, and air support will wipe out any guerrilla group.


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