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> Should Firearm Silencers Be Legalized?, Yearning to be free from ear cups and plugs or something
AuthorMusician
post Jan 15 2017, 01:04 PM
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The story:

https://www.policeone.com/Gun-Legislation-L...ed-to-Congress/

Why should firearm silencers be legalized for the general public?

Why were firearms silencers made illegal in the first place?

Why might you buy a firearm silencer if they're legalized?
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AuthorMusician
post Jan 19 2017, 07:23 PM
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Interesting: silencers/suppressors/reducers/mufflers for firearms are not only not needed because of the availability of ear cups and plugs, the firearm accessories don't work.

Ergo, it's perfectly okay to keep them regulated as is. Nobody anywhere has a need for them. They are a big waste of money, and if someone does come up with a design that does work, the only reason to use it is to hide the sound of gunshots. Very handy for shooting people in crowds and offing families in murder-suicides.

Just a few things:

Duck hunting is indeed a sport for masochists, but mallard duck with an orange glaze is very good. It's a real pain to prepare the carcass, so I never went that way. My brother did -- once.

The decibel scale is logarithmic. This means that increases and decreases are a lot more than they appear:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decibel
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lo rez
post Jan 19 2017, 09:42 PM
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Really? They don't work anyway so go ahead and regulate them in case someone designs one that does work? Is there a rule on the books that regulates the sale of guns that shoot knives or a gun capable of semiautomatically firing a ravenous bloodthirsty tiger because what if, you guys? What if?

Also, they're already available for purchase in at least 40 states. Suppressors, I mean. My tiger-cannon is still in development and not ready to bring to market.
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akaCG
post Jan 20 2017, 12:57 PM
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QUOTE(AuthorMusician @ Jan 19 2017, 02:23 PM) *
...
... it's perfectly okay to keep them regulated as is. Nobody anywhere has a need for them. They are a big waste of money, ...
...

From each according to what they don't need, gospodin/herr kommissar?

Reminds me of another chap with statist instincts:

"We are taking away a choice that continues to let people waste their own money."
--- Stephen Chu, Obama's first U.S. Secretary of Energy, 2011


EDITED TO ADD:

QUOTE(AuthorMusician @ Jan 19 2017, 02:23 PM) *
...
The decibel scale is logarithmic. This means that increases and decreases are a lot more than they appear:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decibel

Quite true, but also quite irrelevant in this context. For instance, ...

It is certainly true that an unsuppressed Remington 700 LR rifle (about 165 dB) is not just 1.22 times as loud as a suppressed one (about 135 dB), but 8 times as loud. However, when it comes to the effect on the human ear, the difference between the two is that the latter entails SUBSTANTIAL immediate damage, while the latter entails "only" SOME immediate damage.

This post has been edited by akaCG: Jan 20 2017, 12:58 PM
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AuthorMusician
post Sep 25 2017, 01:27 PM
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Here's a video that shows how suppressors (in firearm land, mufflers in automotive land) work:

CAUTION: Unrelated marketing stuff at end of video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pOXunRYJIw

Assuming the audio wasn't itself suppressed, the silencing effect seems pretty darn efficient.

To give an idea on where the firearm sound suppression tech is going, take a gander at this automotive muffler:

http://www.exhaustvideos.com/systems/flowmaster/

So if you think that firearms with suppressors/mufflers/silencers are still noisy enough to not be a problem, maybe think again.

Also, if you think that silencers should be called suppressors, might want to consider why an industry would change the commonly understood name. For example, why are switchblades now called automatic knives?

https://www.knifecenter.com/shop/automatic%20knives

It's an old marketing principle to change the name of a product to promote sales, especially if the old name has negative connotations.

In IT we referred to it as changing the name to protect the guilty.

Regarding the argument that firearm noise suppression is necessary to protect hearing, earplug and headset noise reduction/elimination tech is also very advanced. On the argument that firing ranges are annoying to neighbors, there are better solutions than silencing the firearms -- locate the ranges in zoned industrial areas and/or require sound insulation at indoor ranges, for examples. It'd be like how a music recording studio is built. Outdoor ranges should be far away from populated areas anyway due to richochets and stray bullets.

Which leaves the question begging, why would firearm owners want noise suppression screwed onto their gun muzzles? Could it be to commit crimes undetected, such as murder?

One more question: How does the military handle this for, say, cannon fire? Working around jet aircraft or unmuffled prop planes? I know how it's handled in foundaries, as I've worked in one running an industrial grinder. The tech was pretty good even in 1978 -- plugs and cups used together did the trick.

Come to think of it, I also wore a welder's apron and associated heavy gloves. Buttoning up the shirt was a no-brainer while standing in the spray of sparks coming off the castings. A full-face plexiglass shield on top of a stout canvas hat worked well, and steel-toed boots completed the ensamble. Also heavy canvas pants (can't forget those).

It'd be funny to see firearm enthusiasts wearing similar gear. It'd also be smart to do when shooting hunks of metal at high velocity through tubes by the use of rapidly burning powders in a type of internal-combustion engine (ICE).

I suppose if you had to shoot your way to work or to run errands, mufflng the firearms would make sense. But then there'd be bigger problems, eh?

This post has been edited by AuthorMusician: Sep 25 2017, 02:37 PM
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Sep 25 2017, 03:08 PM
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Droop and I already discussed the value of a sound demo on a Youtube video so I won't address that one again.

QUOTE(AuthorMusician @ Sep 25 2017, 08:27 AM) *
Regarding the argument that firearm noise suppression is necessary to protect hearing, earplug and headset noise reduction/elimination tech is also very advanced. On the argument that firing ranges are annoying to neighbors, there are better solutions than silencing the firearms -- locate the ranges in zoned industrial areas and/or require sound insulation at indoor ranges, for examples. It'd be like how a music recording studio is built. Outdoor ranges should be far away from populated areas anyway due to richochets and stray bullets.


Well, a great (though different) example that makes the point would be those small airports. People pay a lot of money to live on a small runway where they can fly their little planes around without bothering anyone. And then civilization moves in and the neighbors start complaining about noise/safety and those once nice little locations people paid a mint to live in are now worthless because the neighbors contacted their representatives and said they don't like the sound of the little planes flying out of those private airports...and besides, flying is dangerous! One of these planes might crash into their house! This in spite of the fact the little airports had been there the whole time. Small runways in private communities have been shutting down all around the country for this reason.

QUOTE
One more question: How does the military handle this for, say, cannon fire? Working around jet aircraft or unmuffled prop planes? I know how it's handled in foundaries, as I've worked in one running an industrial grinder. The tech was pretty good even in 1978 -- plugs and cups used together did the trick.


Earplugs, and a lot of service members still sustain hearing loss (if so they can claim disability, yippee!).
Environment impact assessments are made for noise pollution before a new aircraft comes to an airbase.

Just to add:
QUOTE
It'd be like how a music recording studio is built.

Musicians run a far higher risk of hearing loss than the average person so your example would seem to make the point.


This post has been edited by Mrs. Pigpen: Sep 25 2017, 03:10 PM
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AuthorMusician
post Oct 1 2017, 03:35 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Sep 25 2017, 11:08 AM) *
Just to add:
QUOTE
It'd be like how a music recording studio is built.

Musicians run a far higher risk of hearing loss than the average person so your example would seem to make the point.

Yes, the point that hearing protection works best when it's local to the ears, i.e., earplugs and cups together in a foundry and in-ear monitors for musicians:

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/pro-audio/f...rs&index=10

Just one of many examples for the musician. We haven't had to sacrifice our hearing levels for decades, but the earliest products were indeed simple earplugs. Good in-ear monitors cut off ambient noise like earplugs, and the volume/frequencies can be adjusted either at the mixing board/amp or via an in-line fader switch/EQ stomp box. Depends on the situation, but the old days of hearing loss are over -- unless the musician just doesn't care, choosing instead to have the open-air experience. I'm thinking metal rockers and symphonic orchestras here. Jazz types don't need to crank the electronics so much. Volume needs to be sufficient, but it is not the main thing.

I should also point out that pro musicians practice anywhere from 3-12+ hours daily, including weekends/holidays, depending on ability and motivation to develop new repertoire. If firearm enthusiasts were to do this level of practice, there'd be a lot more personal bankruptcies.

I'm not sure why firearm enthusiasts don't put the protection tech that's local to the ear over on-muzzle tech, other than there's a level of geeky-ness with suppressor/muffler tech. That and criminal activity, of course. And I can point out that just because one enthusiast uses sound suppression on her/his firearm, the protection does not do anything about enthusiasts shooting nearby who do not.

It might help the argument in favor of muzzle sound suppression to protect hearing if indoor ranges required them. Outdoor ranges too? My experience, both as a musician and a firearm user, has been that the sound impact is diluted outside due to the absence of walls, floor and ceiling. But then there's a Catch-22 if the tech is currently illegal. Still, shouldn't that be part of the argument that suppressors/mufflers should be made available to anyone wanting them?

Anyway, protect the ears (if that's the real purpose) with plugs and cups used together. It's a no-brainer and likely cheaper too. Plus the accuracy of the firearm isn't reduced, which is a rather important detail if we are truly talking safety. After all, the muzzle sound suppression tech could fail, sending wild bullets flying or even shrapnel from an exploding canister.

I'm just not buying the ear safety argument when it comes to firearm muzzle sound suppressors/mufflers. Seems pretty dang lame when more effective, safer, and cheaper tech is readily available. In effect, no law has to change in order to protect your ears. If the law does need changing, it's not for that reason.

So if not ear safety, then what? Make it easier to get away with murder? Or is it something even more stupid -- money. Yep, that tracks. The murder part comes along with it, and so the world goes 'round.
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entspeak
post Oct 2 2017, 02:18 PM
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There is no evidence to suggest that silencers are effective at preventing hearing loss. The 30 dB drop doesn't reduce the sound level enough to prevent permanent damage. Going from 140 dB to 110 dB won't prevent permanent damage. It is not a solution. And, there are other means of ear protection that actually can prevent permanent damage. Preventing hearing loss is not a valid reason to legalize silencers.

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AuthorMusician
post Oct 2 2017, 09:43 PM
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Huh, another mass shooting with 58 or so deaths and hundreds injured in Las Vegas yesterday. The responses from politicians are the usual, but more to the point of this thread, legislation that would make firearm noise suppressors easier to get may not ever make it to the House floor.

Then again it could with the current Republican-controlled federal government. If done before the 2018 elections, it could become an issue -- maybe good for Republicans, maybe good for Democrats, it's getting very difficult to call these things.

Oh, and just for grins, the bill would deregulate cop-killer bullets. Yay, making life easier for criminals.

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Mrs. Pigpen
post Oct 3 2017, 12:17 PM
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QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 2 2017, 09:18 AM) *
There is no evidence to suggest that silencers are effective at preventing hearing loss.


Well, yes. Basic human anatomy offers evidence as hearing loss is a combination of frequency and duration as well as intensity.
The sound of a jet plane from 100 ft, for instance, will cause hearing damage but not as quickly as a bull horn in your ear.

QUOTE
The 30 dB drop doesn't reduce the sound level enough to prevent permanent damage. Going from 140 dB to 110 dB won't prevent permanent damage.


True. See above. The problem is repeated exposure to loud noise. Even with hearing protection this can lead to hearing loss.
Foam plugs for example offer between 25-31 dB levels of hearing protection. Still a zone for hearing loss.

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AuthorMusician
post Oct 3 2017, 04:28 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Oct 3 2017, 08:17 AM) *
QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 2 2017, 09:18 AM) *
There is no evidence to suggest that silencers are effective at preventing hearing loss.

QUOTE
The 30 dB drop doesn't reduce the sound level enough to prevent permanent damage. Going from 140 dB to 110 dB won't prevent permanent damage.


True. See above. The problem is repeated exposure to loud noise. Even with hearing protection this can lead to hearing loss.
Foam plugs for example offer between 25-31 dB levels of hearing protection. Still a zone for hearing loss.

This is exactly why I used both foam plugs (high tech for the time) and ear cups while working in a foundry, where the noise was indeed constantly LOUDER THAN HELL and the old timers quite deaf.

Compared to firearm noise, it was like the difference between a thunder clap and a hurricane. Yet after several months of exposure for 45-50 hours per week, my ears came out just fine. A subsequent employer required a hearing test as part of the employment requirements, and the tester told me I could hear a pin drop before it hit the floor.

So if firearm enthusiasts are really concerned about losing their hearing, they should use plugs and cups together. And if the firearm industry really gave a hoot about their customers, well, they'd be doing things a lot differently. For instance, put R&D money into noise-canceling headphone/earbud tech rather than into lobbying Congress to make life easier for criminals.

But noooo, it's gotta be tech on the weapon so that mass shooters, formerly law-abiding citizens, can kill/wound a lot more people before being discovered. I see liquid-cooled silencers, maybe even cryogenic, in our future and death tolls exceeding those from the 9/11 attacks.

And we do it to ourselves.

BTW, suppressor isn't a very good term for the on-gun tech, as it doesn't have a strong connection to sound. Silencer is better, and muffler is right on the mark. I guess to firearm customers, muffler is too wimpy? Offends their snowflake sensibilities? The poor dears.
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Oct 3 2017, 09:10 PM
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QUOTE(AuthorMusician @ Oct 3 2017, 11:28 AM) *
BTW, suppressor isn't a very good term for the on-gun tech, as it doesn't have a strong connection to sound. Silencer is better,


You believe "silence" is the correct term for a sound loud enough to cause ear damage. Okay.

QUOTE
and muffler is right on the mark. I guess to firearm customers, muffler is too wimpy? Offends their snowflake sensibilities? The poor dears.


I'm sure it's fine to call it a muffler.
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entspeak
post Oct 3 2017, 10:37 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Oct 3 2017, 07:17 AM) *
QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 2 2017, 09:18 AM) *
There is no evidence to suggest that silencers are effective at preventing hearing loss.


Well, yes. Basic human anatomy offers evidence as hearing loss is a combination of frequency and duration as well as intensity.
The sound of a jet plane from 100 ft, for instance, will cause hearing damage but not as quickly as a bull horn in your ear.

QUOTE
The 30 dB drop doesn't reduce the sound level enough to prevent permanent damage. Going from 140 dB to 110 dB won't prevent permanent damage.


True. See above. The problem is repeated exposure to loud noise. Even with hearing protection this can lead to hearing loss.
Foam plugs for example offer between 25-31 dB levels of hearing protection. Still a zone for hearing loss.


As I said, protecting one's hearing is not a valid reason to legalize suppressors. The upside (of which there is little) does not outweigh the downside. There are other methods of hearing protection that provide just as much protection and do not have the ability to make it much more difficult to identify where shots are coming from at distance. At the distance from the hotel to the concert, one wonders how many more may have been killed and how much longer his spree would have gone on had Paddock used a suppressor and subsonic rounds.

Although, currently, I'm wondering about whether or not there should be legislation banning bump stocks. I'm sure Nevada will be debating it's lax gun control laws with regard to magazines and bump stocks.

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Mrs. Pigpen
post Oct 4 2017, 02:22 AM
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QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 3 2017, 05:37 PM) *
As I said, protecting one's hearing is not a valid reason to legalize suppressors. The upside (of which there is little) does not outweigh the downside. There are other methods of hearing protection that provide just as much protection and do not have the ability to make it much more difficult to identify where shots are coming from at distance. At the distance from the hotel to the concert, one wonders how many more may have been killed and how much longer his spree would have gone on had Paddock used a suppressor and subsonic rounds.


Well, suppressors are currently legal and they've been legal for quite while.
So I'm surprised they aren't utilized more in crimes if the benefit is so (ostensibly) great for this task.

QUOTE
Although, currently, I'm wondering about whether or not there should be legislation banning bump stocks. I'm sure Nevada will be debating it's lax gun control laws with regard to magazines and bump stocks.


Automatic weapons are illegal, but a person can legally buy a component to make a semi-auto into an auto. Doesn't really seem like a good idea. That's an objection that makes a lot more sense to me than objections to suppressors.

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AuthorMusician
post Oct 4 2017, 02:18 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Oct 3 2017, 10:22 PM) *
Automatic weapons are illegal, but a person can legally buy a component to make a semi-auto into an auto. Doesn't really seem like a good idea. That's an objection that makes a lot more sense to me than objections to suppressors.

I'm sure it's fine to attempt making sense out of this issue.

However, there really are no valid arguments in favor of liberalizing firearm noise muffler laws. Plugs and cups do a better job of protecting ears and are useless for criminals.

BTW, automatic firearms are as legal as firearm mufflers in that the buyer has to meet certain criteria. We can do a lot better than just letting anyone buy anything firearm.

Maybe now that white country music fans were the breathing targets, we will do better. Funny (not ha-ha) how that works. Maybe experimentations with liberalizing firearm laws have reached their end. Heh, the conservative version of social engineering.


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entspeak
post Oct 4 2017, 04:49 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Oct 3 2017, 09:22 PM) *
QUOTE
Although, currently, I'm wondering about whether or not there should be legislation banning bump stocks. I'm sure Nevada will be debating it's lax gun control laws with regard to magazines and bump stocks.


Automatic weapons are illegal, but a person can legally buy a component to make a semi-auto into an auto. Doesn't really seem like a good idea. That's an objection that makes a lot more sense to me than objections to suppressors.

Well, they are two different things. Bump stocks are a no-brainer. I understand how suppressors serve some legal purpose, the question is whether the upsides of suppressors outweigh the downsides - in my opinion, they don't. If Paddock had suppressors, it would've taken authorities much longer than 10 minutes to find him (10 minutes in which 59 people died and 527 were critically injured by 1 man 500 yards away and over 100 yards above ground)... many, many more would likely be dead and injured.

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LoneWisdom
post Oct 4 2017, 06:03 PM
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QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 4 2017, 12:49 PM) *
QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Oct 3 2017, 09:22 PM) *
QUOTE
Although, currently, I'm wondering about whether or not there should be legislation banning bump stocks. I'm sure Nevada will be debating it's lax gun control laws with regard to magazines and bump stocks.


Automatic weapons are illegal, but a person can legally buy a component to make a semi-auto into an auto. Doesn't really seem like a good idea. That's an objection that makes a lot more sense to me than objections to suppressors.

Well, they are two different things. Bump stocks are a no-brainer. I understand how suppressors serve some legal purpose, the question is whether the upsides of suppressors outweigh the downsides - in my opinion, they don't. If Paddock had suppressors, it would've taken authorities much longer than 10 minutes to find him (10 minutes in which 59 people died and 527 were critically injured by 1 man 500 yards away and over 100 yards above ground)... many, many more would likely be dead and injured.


Sorry Hillary Clinton, a suppressor would not have helped Stephen Paddock hurt more people in Las Vegas

A fire alarm from gun smoke led police to the Las Vegas shooters room, retired officer says


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entspeak
post Oct 5 2017, 05:08 PM
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QUOTE(LoneWisdom @ Oct 4 2017, 01:03 PM) *

There is a flaw in this logic. Yes, the smoke alarms helped them find the room without a floor by floor search, but they knew it was coming from the hotel because... they could eventually pinpoint where the shots were coming from. At 500 yds, with a silencer and subsonic rounds, it would've been more difficult to know exactly which direction the shots were coming from - which building. Yes, the echoes create confusion, but with a suppressor and subsonic rounds, there would'nt have even been echoes... at that distance, you'd only hear the thud of the impact. They would've found him eventually, but not as fast as they did.

(I can't read the Examiner link for long because of a massive pop-up that I can't close on my phone.)

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AuthorMusician
post Oct 5 2017, 06:29 PM
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QUOTE(LoneWisdom @ Oct 4 2017, 02:03 PM) *

This observation isn't relevant. The best use for firearm mufflers would be short-range handgun murders, such as a father offing his children and spouse while not alerting neighbors that anything is wrong. Usually it's the father but sometimes the mother. Less noise would mean more getaway time.

I suppose distance shooters wouldn't use them due to the decrease in accuracy that mufflers introduce. And in the particular case of Las Vegas, the shooter was obviously concerned about overheated barrels, and a muffler would have just made that worse due to retained heat in the muffler canister and barrel.

Perhaps the school shooters would like to use them? Not sure that psychological type would much care about getting away with it. The Vegas shooter maybe planned to escape, which would have been awfully short due to the records he left behind and the act of knocking out the hotel window. Law enforcement would know immediately who had occupied that room.

I do agree that bump stocks and any other accessory meant to increase the rate of firing should be outlawed. After all, they are not arms protected by any amendment. They are accessories meant to defeat the law. Designers and manufacturers should be subject to stiff penalties because we all know what they're trying to do, which is to increase the deadliness of firearms. Those who obtain the contraband via black markets should also face stiff penalties. Keep it all monetary, no jail time, but make it hurt a lot.

I see where the NRA has hauled out one of its classic arguments -- first we need to ban hands and feet before firearms, thereby drawing a false equality. But hey. let's go along with that. If hands and feet are as deadly as firearms, we can ban firearms altogether. People would then defend themselves using the weapons God gave them.

It is of course a bad conclusion drawn from worse logic. Firearms are killing machines; hands and feet are not nearly as efficient.
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post Oct 5 2017, 06:58 PM
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QUOTE(entspeak @ Oct 5 2017, 01:08 PM) *
QUOTE(LoneWisdom @ Oct 4 2017, 01:03 PM) *

There is a flaw in this logic. Yes, the smoke alarms helped them find the room without a floor by floor search, but they knew it was coming from the hotel because... they could eventually pinpoint where the shots were coming from. At 500 yds, with a silencer and subsonic rounds, it would've been more difficult to know exactly which direction the shots were coming from - which building. Yes, the echoes create confusion, but with a suppressor and subsonic rounds, there would'nt have even been echoes... at that distance, you'd only hear the thud of the impact. They would've found him eventually, but not as fast as they did.

(I can't read the Examiner link for long because of a massive pop-up that I can't close on my phone.)


The following is not entirely confirmed, but logical speculation. Timeline shows Paddock stopped firing (had been firing on the concert crowd for about 10 minutes) when smoke alarms went off and the security guard showed up to investigate. Apparently Paddock saw the guard on his cameras and fired about 200 rounds into the hallway. Even after being shot, guard called it in and helped clear other guests from the floor. Since Paddock never fired on the concert crowd again, I expect he killed himself shortly after SWAT arrived. I don't think the crowd knew where the shots were coming from.

I suspect that any belief that suppressors and subsonic rounds being silent are Hollywood fantasy, somewhat supported by the first article. I sincerely doubt that an expectation of silence would have been a factor. Using my lifetime experience with rifles, shotguns, handguns, and including an M16 in the Air Force, as well as firing 5.56 rounds with an AR15 at a gun range, I expect Paddock knew he couldn't fire on the crowd silently. Whether he would have been aware of the echo causing source confusion or that he'd fill the room with smoke is unknown. Based on the number of weapons he had, I expect he thought he had more time.

Edited to add:

Outlawing silencers and bump stocks will have the same effect as putting up signs identifying a hotel, school, or theater as a gun free zone. People seem to be unaware that firearms have been around for about a thousand years and that any novice machine shop operator could probably figure out how to manufacture them as well as their accessories. In fact, the failures of prohibition and the war on drugs should indicate the effectiveness of any such law. Once the mechanical knowledge is out, it can usually be duplicated. Creating a black market for a product just increases the profitability and participating. Could it be that you're thinking of a different human race than the one on Earth?

This post has been edited by LoneWisdom: Oct 5 2017, 06:59 PM
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AuthorMusician
post Oct 5 2017, 07:51 PM
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QUOTE(LoneWisdom @ Oct 5 2017, 02:58 PM) *
Outlawing silencers . . .

They are already outlawed for those without the prerequisites. The proposed law in question would make it easier for anyone to buy them.
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