Thursday, July 17, 2008

When is a Machine Gun not a Machine Gun?

When it's not:

The Washington D.C. government told Dick Heller that since his pistol was loaded from the bottom, it is legally defined to be a Machine Gun. No pistol permit for you, because the Supreme Court decided in DC v. Heller that there's no constitutional right to unusual or dangerous weapons, and hey, machine guns are dangerous, mkay?

Now, my Google-fu may be weak, but a search for definition:"machine gun" turns up a whole heaping helping of definitions, none of which include the term "Semi-automatic pistol". They all talk about "fires repeatedly and automatically as long as the trigger is depressed and ammunition is fed to the gun." This pistol doesn't fit that bill.

Plus, I'm sure that Captain Sam Woodfill would have been surprised that he was awarded the Medal of Honor for using a "machine gun":
To the left of the church, bright muzzle flashes were seen from the loft inside a stable. Only one shot silenced this machine gun. (Was it one of those slimmed-down Spandaus?) In stalking the third machine gun he had seen, he suffered mustard gas poisoning in a shell hole, but continued. He took cover behind a pile of gravel in a ditch, sighting on a machine-gun muzzle poking through a clump of foliage about 40 yards away (this distance is in dispute), and laid out his Ml9lI pistol. Through his stinging eyes, he finally saw a face and fired. He finished his five-round clip on four succeeding faces. A sixth crew member tried to escape and was shot with the pistol (the rifle was empty) through the head -- a moving target at more than 40 yards distance, Inspecting the site, he shot a seventh crew member with a pistol when attacked.
Hmmm - the word "pistol" and the term "machine gun" are both used in this, and they don't seem mean the same thing. It must be that I don't possess the super size craniums of the DC Government.

It's like they just don't want to let anyone have a gun or something.

Whee! That was fun - let's play again:

When is an Assault Rifle not an Assault Rifle?

When it's not:

I know, I know, it looks like a deer rifle. It's actually one of the most popular target shooting riles in America. But wait - it has a muzzle compensator. It's an Assault Rifle!

It's like they just don't want to let anyone have a gun or something.

How about another?

When is a Militia Weapon not a Militia Weapon?

When it's not:

All the super-size cranium liberals kept saying that the Second Amendment only applies to firearms as relating to the militia. This AR-15 is functionally identical to the military M-16, except it is semi-automatic (only fires one shot per trigger pull). That makes it the ideal weapon for the citizens to arm themselves with, to be ready for militia duty (presumably with M-16s). Strange, the discussion goes something like this:

Me: So assuming that the Second Amendment relates to the necessity of a citizenry well trained for militia duty, how about everyone should buy an Evil Black Rifle?

Super-size Cranium Liberal: Eeek!

Me: Can I show you the difference between automatic and semi-automatic guns?

Super-size Cranium Liberal: Eeek!

Me: Can't we discuss this like adults?

Super-size Cranium Liberal: You must be compensating for something.

It's like they just don't want to let anyone have a gun or something!

Disclaimer: Say Uncle says that Heller's pistol wasn't even the Manly Colt 1911 .45 ACP. It was a .22. We seem to have discovered the world's first .22 machine gun!

UPDATE 17 July 2008 21:50: My Google-fu is strong - at least stronger than the Brady Campaign Against Gun Ownership. A Sitemeter referrer log led me to the following Google blogsearch string: "DC Heller"

Borepatch: Search result #25

Brady Campaign yadda yadda: Search result #26.

Whoo hoo! And there's a lot more where that came from, you Super-size cranium liberals!

UPDATE 17 July 22:21: Well, it was fun while it lasted. I must be in an earlier timezone than the big boy bloggers. Oh bother.

But there is still more where that came from! And they're still Super-size cranium liberals ...

Last Update 18 July 21:17: Lots of misinformation, although none of it changes the thrust of this post. However, for the record, Mr. Heller tried to register a 1911 pistol, he was turned down because it could accept a magazine with 12 or more rounds, which makes it a "machine gun" in Washington DC. He was able to successfully register his revolver.


ASM826 said...

You could wear yourself out, using full Google-Fu like that. We have more in common than blogging about the 2nd Amendment. I work in IT, as a sysdamin. How I got there is a long story, but I started in electronics in the Marine Corps.

Borepatch said...

Funny, I started as an engineer, at a 3-letter federal security agency whose name ends with "Security Agency" ;-)