General Question

Yetanotheruser's avatar

What are some "legitimate" reason for a citizens to own firearms with high-volume clips?

Asked by Yetanotheruser (14818 points ) January 2nd, 2013

This is not intended to be a “poke” at gun-lovers. I am asking because I truly do not understand the need or desire for high volume, high speed clips in a peaceful society. I understand and support the rights of sportsmen, recreational shooters, and the like, and I grew up in a rural area, and had a b-b gun, and as an adult I have lived in several rural areas where having a sidearm or shotgun handy might mean the difference between being bitten by a poisonous snake or not.

That being said, I fail to understand the need (as opposed to the want or desire) for a high-volume firearms, except by police or military, for obvious reasons. Can the collective enlighten me?

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71 Answers

KNOWITALL's avatar

My husband and I discussed this and we can’t see any reason, and we love guns, hunting, etc… I’m interested to see if anyone has a legitimate reason because when I’ve asked I’ve gotten no reply.

burntbonez's avatar

Not that I can think of.

sinscriven's avatar

My only guess is to protect yourself FROM the police and military.

It’s a little tinfoil-hatty but considering how police brutality an such is still a thing, not absolutely unreasonable.

WestRiverrat's avatar

I have had up to 10 coyotes circling my turkey blind, a couple of them close enough to touch. I felt less than adequately armed with my 2 shot turkey gun.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

There’s no good reason.

Seek's avatar

The most likely answer is “Why not?”

And to be honest, it’s valid. I’m generally opposed to any law restricting the rights of citizens. However, shiz has gotten out of hand. Too many people being irresponsible with their weapons has forced the issue to the point of a matter of public safety.

If we’re going to medicate our children to modify their behaviour, and manage to protect the rest of society when those side effects rear their ugly heads, the guns have got to go.

wds2's avatar

I agree with @Seek_Kolinahr on this. Mostly.

However, I do see a very legitimate reason to this. Our Constitution is written with the replacement of bad governments in mind. We are supposed to be able to replace the government if we feel it is doing the job unacceptably. If the government restricts us from owning firearms and accesories to replace them, they are setting the nation up for control that we can do nothing about.

Still, I’m not saying everyone should have this sort of weaponry; it should be well regulated, with different levels of regulation depending on the device.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Wolves, coyotes, bears, snakes, bobcats, etc… If you’re not a crack shot, it’s gonna take multiple rounds to take down a dangerous, predatory animal.

marinelife's avatar

There are none.

Seek's avatar

@wds2 I don’t see that as a valid reason. Are we going to singlehandedly take over our government, overthrow them with AK-47s? Is that how the world changes? We see how well it’s working in Africa.

We can have automatic weapons, but they have bombs. By your logic, should citizens be allowed access to nuclear warheads?

wds2's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Alright, I hadn’t entirely thought about that, but your right. I concede.

Ron_C's avatar

There is no “legitimate” reason to own or use high capacity magazines except to kill people. I know that there is a portion of our society that likes to blow things up. I fail to see why those clips should be available just to satisfy this need.

20 first graders were slaughtered the other day; it is no longer possible to say that the large clips are legitimate for fun. We have to stop accommodating the gun lobby and cultivate common sense.

Nullo's avatar

Who decides what’s a legitimate reason? Or what constitutes “high capacity?” You?

This is a clip. This is a magazine. Clip fills magazine, magazine feeds gun.

@Seek_Kolinahr You can have an automatic weapon if you feel like forking over five figures for one of the gradually deteriorating assault rifles or machine guns. Most people are content with semiautomatic weapons.

jca's avatar

There was an editorial written in the NY Times after the Newtown tragedy, (I don’t have link right off the bat) but the point of the editorial was that when the Constitution was written, semi-automatic weapons were unimaginable. They did not intend (or did not necessarily intend) for citizens to have weapons of this nature.

Seek's avatar

@Nullo Most people are content to keep a hunting rifle on the top shelf of their closet, but those aren’t the people shooting babies in movie theaters.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Didn’t people in trains massacre whole herds of Buffalo with guns?
This is so NOT a new topic. Guns aren’t the problem, crazy ass people are the problem.

Seek's avatar

Crazy ass people with access to guns are the problem. It’s really frakking easy to kill someone with a gun accidentally, much more so when you’re actively trying to.

Bill1939's avatar

The Founding Fathers saw the necessity of empowering the populace against a tyrannical government. They could not have envisioned what fire arms would evolve into, however. To some today, the gun is like the Bible; In the past, governments have sought to control both. Like the Star of David stands for a people, so do weapons to their owners.

There is money to be made selling arms and their accouterments, as there always has been. Manufacturers and distributers, along with the NRA and gun lovers in general, will insure that any laws passed to mollify demands for the power to prevent future gun related tragedies, will have little impact in that regard.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr But everyone has access to guns if they want it bad enough. I can go to Walmart and get one right this second with no background check.

I’ve never even been in one fight in my entire life, so violence doesn’t make any sense to me unless I’m protecting my family/ home/ innocents.

Seek's avatar

@KNOWITALL You have no idea how much it bugs me that it is possible to buy guns from Walmart.

It’s the access that needs to be restricted. No, I don’t know how, but the fact remains. It’s too easy to get a gun. Period.

KNOWITALL's avatar

May as well get your groceries, phone, tires and guns at the same place, China has to have their money (that’s sarcasm.)

WestRiverrat's avatar

Banning high capacity magazines will not stop them from being made or utilized. Any high school student with access to a decent metal shop can make a high capacity magazine in short order. They can make one in a day if they don’t know what they are doing, and several once they figure the first one out.

Seek's avatar

What high school has a metal shop anymore? We don’t trust kids with machinery, or parents to not sue if the kid burns his finger with a spot welder.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr most of them around here do.

majorrich's avatar

High capacity magazines gives parity between civilian and military weapons. Being as the Minute Man was the model of the revolutionary soldier, he was to be equipped with as advanced a weapon as was available at the time. The Modern Minute Man, despite having a standing Federal Army, has a 30 round magazine on parity with his Federal counterpart. under USC Title 10 › Subtitle A › Part I › Chapter 13 › § 311 The Organized and Unorganized Militia is defined. The Unorganized Militia is/was generally under the direction of the Sheriff of the town from whence the members came and was responsible (presumably) for the training of these people. It could be argued that as the unorganized Militia is formed under the same code, that parity of weaponry and equipment was also created. Besides, being able to shoot 30 squirrels or groundhogs before changing magazines is very convenient.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

The best and only reason needed; the US Constitution says you can. Aside from that, invasion of your home by bats and the shotgun is empty, stampede of your home by bison, etc. Stampede of your home by butt nuggets who don’t know better not to try and take people’s stuff. Fun target practice. Cocktail conversation. Ice breakers at parties and bars, I could go on but the first reason, the 2nd Amendment says you can trumps all the others anyhow.

jaytkay's avatar

The best and only reason needed; the US Constitution says you can

The 2nd amendment says something about high capacity magazines?

Tell us all about that.

josie's avatar

Why not. Unless you are psychotic, what does the issue have to do with whether you may or may not choose to own guns. It is not my fault, nor yours, that the epidemic of sociopathy has been confused with the prerogative of gun ownership.

Judi's avatar

If you can’t do what you need to do in 5 shots or less you have no business carrying a weapon.

CWOTUS's avatar

I’ve posted this link before for those who might want to read it, either to agree (as I generally do) or to at least argue against something real. I doubt that most bother, or will even acknowledge the scholarship that went into it. Maybe a few…

Coloma's avatar

Short of waking up in the first season of The Walking Dead, there is NO reason, period.

wundayatta's avatar

It’s really simple. Having guns around kills people. We’d be better off with most of those people alive. We’d be better off solving our problems without firepower like that. A hunting rifle and a shotgun I can understand. If you live in close proximity to nature, I can see needing a gun to protect yourself from said nature, although not one that can rapidly fire a whole lot of bullets. People who find themselves surrounded by wolves probably had no business being out there in the first place without getting more training, first.

Our ancestors survived using spears and swords. We don’t need guns. The only reason we need guns is because other humans have guns. The answer is not more guns. It is fewer guns. People who say that isn’t realistic are ignoring so many causes in the past where we said things couldn’t change, and yet they did. We made them change.

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Deshi_basara's avatar

A government should be afraid of it’s citizens, not the other way around. High volume magazines would be really useful in cases of homeland attacks, over bearing governments, and other types of situations were defending yourself is completely in your hands.

Quit being sheep y’all, don’t let the news media and our government make you believe things that arent true. “assualt weapons” and things with large volume magazines are not used in murders and shootings as often as you thing. Carbines are actually used less than knives (if memory serves correctly).

Growing up in a metropolitian area with a heavy gang influence has taught me a few things. The top two: Those who cannot defend themselves are quickly taken advantage of and criminals don’t exactly follow the law…. Please, keep pushing for gun restrictions. I can defend myself with my knives better than I can be attacked with a gun (at close range). Can you say the same?

lightsourcetrickster's avatar

The Constitution allows for the right to bear arms but does not implicitly state any limitations on the ‘arms’ an American citizen can ‘bear’ (yes, I have read it, no, I’m not from the US).
The question is where do you draw the line between what could be seen as a reasonable amount of ammo because you’re of the “looking to defend yourself if you have to” type of person and what could be deemed as being borderline “Maybe-plotting-to-wipe-out-an-entire-town’s-population” sort of thing.
If I were an American citizen, which sadly I’m not (as previously stated), I would settle for a good 9mm and a single box of ammo.

Come the zombie apocalypse though, I’d want something akin to an MG42 and more than a few hundred rounds. Seeing as I’m in the UK, I’ll just have to make do with a frying pan. Now…how many frying pans is too many?

wundayatta's avatar

How many omelets you plannin’ on makin’?

CWOTUS's avatar

The question is asked in jest, obviously, but @lightsourcetrickster has a point. Since guns have been outlawed in the UK, so have katanas and samurai swords, but violence and murders continue.

So there now appears to be some effort – who knows how serious? – to ban steak knives and other long kitchen knives in the UK. Apparently, some “top chefs” were consulted, who claim there is “no practical use” for long, pointed knives, and they are used in a number of assaults and murders.

majorrich's avatar

Are pointy scissors next?! Some Englishmen are known to run with scissors. Who knows how eyes will be saved.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

@majorrich That’s one of my issues every time someone talks about gun control. While I totally agree that there should be background checks and longer waiting periods to purchase a gun, that’s not going to stop a criminal if they want one. Banning assault weapons is not going to stop a criminal from getting one.

If we ban everything that could possibly commit a crime, we’d have to ban almost everything! No guns, no knives, no shovels (thank you very much, I’m fucking vicious with a shovel), no frying pans, no scissors, no box cutters, no golf clubs, no stiletto heels, no rat poison, no peanuts, no shellfish, no collectible swords or daggers, no axes, no chainsaws… And I’ve said this before, but if I were pissed off enough, I could bludgeon someone to death with a heavy book.

I could and do own an SKS, and not hurt anyone with it. I’ve never shot anything with it besides cans and old barrels. I’ve never been tempted, even on my worst days, to walk into a public place and start blasting away with it.

It’s not the guns that are the issue, it’s the fucking lunatics out there. The way to stop lunatics from committing mass murder is to force every adult to pass a parenting test before being allowed to stop mandatory birth control, and to make sure that health insurance is affordable enough for everyone so that people have cheaper access to good mental health care before they go apeshit and kill people.

And sorry for going so off topic…

Seek's avatar

^ I agree with the last paragraph, wholeheartedly.

majorrich's avatar

Compulsory sterilization for failure to pass the test. also would help in population control.

Seek's avatar

Wait… not the sterilisation. The health care and mental health care thing.

Voluntary sterilisation yes. Mandatory, no.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Mandatory birth control would be enough, and they could re-take the parenting test in 5 years. I say that in all seriousness, because I know people who would easily fail a parenting test. People who have kids already, and if that doesn’t scare the crap out of me…

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@wundayatta It’s really simple. Having guns around kills people.Would that be to say vehicles kill people not nitwits who drive inebriated? Because our forefathers got by without vehicles but horses we should go pack to riding ponies and then we will have no vehicle fatalities? Lets not stop there, we can go to jets as well, our forefathers got by without jets, and we should not be in such a hurry to get around in those murderous jets, save lives, take the train or the stagecoach.

Our ancestors survived using spears and swords. They survived without cell phones, media, birth control, weather radar, microwave ovens, etc. If you can survive with improvements why not?

wundayatta's avatar

Reductio ad absurdum. It’s a failed rhetorical technique used by people when they don’t have a real argument.

Nullo's avatar

Would you like your freedom of speech to be limited to ten words per statement? Twitter has taught us that you can say a lot with a few well-chosen words.

I’m more than a bit peeved that law-abiding people are being punished for crimes that they didn’t commit.

@wundayatta It is estimated that there are about two million instances of defensive gun use each year. 2,000,000 vs. 10,000, with at least some of the former accounting for the latter, to say nothing of criminal uses of guns against criminals.

@lightsourcetrickster A typical box of 9mm holds 50 rounds. You and a friend can polish off three of those, no trouble, in a single trip to the range. There really isn’t a reason not to keep a larger store around – especially if you find a good deal on the stuff, which sometimes you do. It’s not like it’s going to spoil.

wundayatta's avatar

@Nullo It is estimated that there are around two million bogus reports of defensive gun use each year.

Well shoot. I’ll admit I just made that up. But you? You didn’t provide a source for your statistic, so pardon me if it sounds a little too good to be real. Especially given the bogosity of most crime statistics. I mean, they can’t even count murders properly and accurately. How the hell could they count… what is it? Instances of defensive gun use? Shirley you can’t be saying that with a straight face? And yes, I guess I did just call you Shirley. ;-) (It’s a joke).

Nullo's avatar

@wundayatta Some quick wiki work suggests that the issue is a bit more complicated, yes.

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Seek's avatar

@WillWorkForChocolate Who’s going to write the test? Do people who cosleep with their infants get bonus points or fail immediately? Do we give passes to Jehovah’s Witnesses even though they don’t believe in lifesaving medical care? How about their views on video games before age five?

Ron_C's avatar

This all boils down to what weapons are acceptable for a “well regulated militia”. The state national guard meets the definition of a “well regulated militia”. Individuals, without formal guidance are either gun nuts or loose cannons. The constitution never meant for individuals to decide on advanced weapons without responsible leaderships.

These guys with 30 round magazines on a fully automatic weapon are a good example of loose cannons that need supervision.

tedd's avatar

I am a staunch Democrat, and a solid liberal… and while there are few good reasons for large capacity clips to exist… frankly I don’t think gun violence is a great reason for them to not exist either.

Guns didn’t cause the massacre in Connecticut, they were simply the tool a mentally deranged person used to carry out his insanity. What’s to stop the next guy from driving his car through a mall, or following basic instructions on the internet and making a bomb… or heck, making a high capacity clip (directions exist to make one at home).

Guns were never the problem here, mental health issues are. It frankly sickens me that all the attention is being paid to gun control, when the actual problem is being largely ignored.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr I guess it would have to come from a very diverse group of people who can agree on the most important points of proper child-rearing. And I would think there should be questions on the test that involve how to decide whether or not your child is capable of handling certain things at certain ages. It would be difficult to decide exactly everything that should be on the test, but definitely doable, in my opinion.

For the record, I have no problem with video games or certain movies at any age (except those involving sex), as long as the parent explains the difference between reality and fantasy to their children. I mean, hardcore, gory movies are still too much (things like Saw and the like), but my kids have seen Hunger Games, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, etc… My little one has been playing Call of Duty with her daddy and big sister for two years (she’s six) but she’s the furthest thing from being violent. She’s a very sensitive, down to earth child. She also watched Harry Potter with us at an early age. I just make sure my kids are well-grounded, and that they understand the differences between real life and entertainment.

You also have to know the limitations of your own children. What’s good for one may not be good for the other. I have talks with my children, before making the decision to let them play or watch specific things. If, from our conversation, I gauge that they’re not ready, then that’s it. I’m not really trying to toot my own horn, but I consider that to be an excellent parenting technique.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@tedd Most reasonable. I completely agree. Threatening the rights of American citizens is not a good thing.

Seek's avatar

@WillWorkForChocolate You also have to know the limitations of your own children. What’s good for one may not be good for the other.

That’s exactly why you can’t give a “parenting test.”

My son’s four. He has a first-grade reading level, can add and subtract two digit numbers, climbs trees like a monkey, and writes songs about George Romero movies for his pretend band, RockSmash. He has friends who aren’t allowed to watch Disney movies because they’re too scary, and have never consumed white sugar or red meat.

The other mother and I each think the other is crazy. To each his own, eh?

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Ron_C when the Constitution was written the militia was made up of every able bodied citizen over 21 years of age. In other words if you were eligible to vote you were part of the militia.

Deshi_basara's avatar

@Ron_C Really? full auto weapons are allowed to be owned bu common people? No sir. That requires a Class 3 permit, which are quite expensive, require many training courses, and are actually difficult to get. Try again.

As for the militia, well according to the constitution we are to be lead, trained, and if needed armed, by our city’s sherrif. I’d say that’s good enough for me. Also, the militia of the past used the most advanced weapons that were avaliable. H’m, sounds like in todays world if I can only have a gun with a 5 round capacity, I’m kinda screwed if I need to defend my homeland.

Go read some stuff. Seriously.

Seek's avatar

@Deshi_basara Sorry, but the Constitution says absolutely nothing about sheriffs regulating the militia. It mentions a “well regulated militia”, but that’s it.

Second amendment as ratified by the States:
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Go read some stuff. Seriously.

Deshi_basara's avatar

“If a well regulated militia be the most natural defence of a free country, it ought certainly to be under the regulation and at the disposal of that body which is constituted the guardian of the national security…confiding the regulation of the militia to the direction of the national authority…(and) reserving to the states…the authority of training the militia”.

Federalist No.29
written by one of the framers of the constitution to serve as definition and addition.

Then if we look at the 11th ammendment of the constitution….
Particularly this this section here…
provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress.

When these paramilitary groups were needed, they were organized by the sherrifs of town until they met up with army officials.

I’m sorry, you were saying what again?

CWOTUS's avatar

To get back to the original question…

Not being a shooter (I shot a bolt-action .22 when I was a teenager, and I’ve only recently been exposed to revolvers and semi-automatic handguns), it took me a while to think of the “legitimate reasons”.

1. Convenience. Loading a magazine takes time. You don’t want to have to do that on the range, and you can easily shoot a lot of shells in an hour on the range. So it’s much more convenient (and cost-effective) to load the magazine at home, when you’re not paying for range time.

2. Cost. See above. In addition, while three ten-round clips will hold the same number of shells as a thirty-round clip, a single piece of hardware will nearly always be cheaper than buying the three individual clips.

3. Weight. Maybe it’s a small thing, but if you’re packing for the trail you want to reduce the pack weight by every ounce possible. The thirty-round clip will be slightly lower weight than three individual clips.

lightsourcetrickster's avatar

“You don’t want to have to do that on the range, and you can easily shoot a lot of shells in an hour on the range.”

The heck are you firing off? You got a Howitzer in your backyard or something? :P

WestRiverrat's avatar

@lightsourcetrickster I don’t have one in my backyard, but I crew on a 3” Parrot and a 12 lb Napoleon for reenactments.

Ron_C's avatar

By the NRA logic Americans should be able to own and operate large caliber machine guns, armed drones, and possibly a cruise missile or two

It is just stupid.

majorrich's avatar

@Ron_C Clearly you have never been outside ‘first world’ countries, where there are laws and rules and most people follow them. Machine gun’s were once available in the Sears Catalog. They aren’t legal any more and I haven’t heard a peep out of the NRA about it. In Bosnia, the place is crawling with automatic weapons, RPG’s Handheld explosive devices, you name it, you could get it. Not one peep from the NRA to make that so here in the US. What are you talking about?

Ron_C's avatar

@majorrich actually, I’ve been all over the world. Just because they have RPGs and automatics in places like Bosnia, that doesn’t make it right. In fact, it shows how dangerous and stupid it is to own a high powered weapon.

WestRiverrat's avatar

She clearly needed more bullets in her gun.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

@WestRiverrat Yes, she did! And that story just proves that you don’t fuck with moms.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@WestRiverrat She clearly needed more bullets in her gun. She was suppose to just be very observant so if she lived after he rode her hard and put her away wet for a couple of hours and done who knows what to the children, so can give a detailed description of him, so the cops can clean up once it was all over. Or maybe she should have tried to defend herself with a baseball bat or kitchen knife because her firearm was outlawed [sorry but sarcasm is a dish best served dry and it is indeed aridly dry in here]

majorrich's avatar

^^^ How about a spare magazine or two so the headlines can read something like “Woman defends herself and children with handgun. The would be rapist/burglar/Jehovah’s Witness suffered multiple gunshot wounds as the victim fired 21 rounds pausing only twice to reload.” For color commentary they could throw in “the weapon used by the victim was a Wilson Combat supreme with an arched spring and custom trigger with a skeletonized hammer and cryo-treated Wilson hammer forged barrel”

jonsblond's avatar

@WestRiverrat Did you catch msn’s take on the story? The headline of the story was changed after publication. It first read “Trigger happy mom shoots intruder”. Trigger happy? Really? Yeah, I’m sure that mom was thrilled. Another fine sentence from the story: “This story, shared thousands of times from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website, has incited some pro-gun tweeps to voice their delight.”

Pro-gun tweeps. That’s some fine journalism.~

WestRiverrat's avatar

She was probably scared shitless for her kids and herself. I am guessing if she hadn’t been shaking real bad the 5 bullets that hit his head would have been center mass instead of nonlethal hits. Even trained cops in their first shooting typically don’t remember they emptied their handguns in a shoot out, instead of firing the one or two shots they remember.

I won’t be ashamed for showing delight in the victim winning for a change. The AJC’s slanted reporting of this story may be why they are losing subscribers.

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