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Thread: 10 reasons not to like guns

  1. #1
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    Apr 2009
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    I enjoy target shooting as a hobby. I'm always surprised when people consider it "dangerous". I know skiers, motorcycle racers, rock climbers, and kayakers all of whose sports have higher injury and fatality rates. Every year I hear news reports of lost hikers, fallen climbers and another of my skiier friends gets a torn ACL. Those sports can only wish for the low accident rates from spending an occasional day at the range.

    People I meet who dislike guns usually fall somewhere between those who have never seen one in real life, whose education on the subject is from sensationalized media and fanciful movies, and those who grew up around hunters and gun enthusiasts and just never got into it. I understand the latter. No sport is for everyone.

    Those who fall toward the former usually work in the phrase "They're scary" into the conversation. That I don't understand. Not a one of them I've taken to the range has come away saying "That was the scariest thing I've ever been through." It's really just not a rational fear.

    That left me thinking about why a rational person wouldn't like guns. After a long night getting ready for a long day at the range I thought about the days I've had a bad follow through and missed nearly every shot, or been exhausted taking something apart for a good cleaning and I just "did not like guns" that day. I came up with 10 reasons not to like guns beside "They're scary".

    1) They're expensive. Thanks to legislation against affordable handguns because apparently poor people in bad neighbourhoods, cornered in their homes, seconds from great personal violence, should need to wait an average 7 minutes for police and not allowed to defend themselves with the same weapons bad guys are attacking them with, you can pay $300 to over $1000 for something simple to plink with. You can find a glorified BB gun for less, or if you're lucky and shop around with a lot of effort you might find something reasonably serviceable. If you want to hunt, you can find something cheap that a squirrel will point and laugh at you over.

    2) They're expensive. Cheap ammo, when you can get it, is running $20 for a box of 50 rounds. If you take it slow, you might be able to make that last you half an hour at the range. Any reasonable hunting ammo is closer to $1 a round. If you have a friend who is kind enough to take you shooting, think about how many lunches you owe him for every shot fired. You can reload your own after investing in several hundred dollars in equipment and maybe cut your ammo costs in half. After you've recouped your initial investment on the equipment, of course.

    3) They're expensive. There are a several new ranges opening in Colorado. They run from $10-15 a visit to $30 a month for membership (per person). That's after you pay the $2-400 joining fee. If you can find a safe place to shoot on National Forest land, that's of no cost. You just need to pay for fuel up to the mountains, find a legal place to park, and hike in a couple miles. There are places that were safe and built up into ranges, and then subsequently closed when mountain bikers went off trails to ride on backstops to "show them rednecks who's boss".

    4) They're complicated. Not to operate. Even fancy semi-automatics are less complicated to operate than starting a car. But if something goes wrong, and you need to take a trigger assembly apart, or pay someone else to do it, you might be kissing your car's mechanic for making your life comparitively simple.

    5) They're complicated. Gunpowder residue is corrosive. That means the only way to preserve your firearm is either not to shoot it and let it be an expensive paperweight (which a surprising number of people do), or to clean it thoroughly and regularly. Anything more complicated than a revolver or a bolt action rifle means fieldstripping with small parts and springs to keep track of and the occasional set of specialty tools. A complete takedown is going to be eventually necessary to clean out years of dust and gun oil coagulating into grease clogging mechanical actions.

    6) They're clumsy. Forget the fantasies of ladies carrying their tiny life saving pistols in their bras, or ol' boots and spurs carrying one in his belt buckle. Those toys are about as useful as a slingshot for their accuracy beyond two feet. Notice how cops walk akimbo with their tool belts? Even a nice, compact 5 shot hammerless revolver is still around a pound of metal tucked away on your person. Stick a soup can in your pocket and see how that feels for a while.

    7) They're clumsy. Even if you're not carrying, range safety calls for keeping your firearms cased and unloaded until you're on the line. Then you need to keep your weapons secure and pointed downrange. There's not a lot of room in that bay for your range bag, a couple of guns, safety gear, ammo, and spent brass.

    8) They're clumsy. Guns need to be in safes. Whether you have kids or not. Maybe you have it for defense, but the burglar who strikes while you're away and finds it under your mattress is now armed and after someone else. If nothing else, remember, THEY'RE EXPENSIVE. If you have one in a bedside lockbox for home defense, that means your others will be in a larger vault. Safety would say keep your ammo in a separate safe from your firearm. You can go further and dissasemble your guns and keep their parts separately. If you want less clumsiness, then keep everything together. But with holsters, targets, safety glasses, ear protection, target holders, staple guns, range finders, and spotting scopes, you'll run out of room fast. THEN you get to take all of that to the range.

    9) They're loud. No, I don't mean they go bang and are scary. But spend a day at the range with earmuffs and having to shout to have a conversation with your shooting buddies and once you're hoarse and your ears hurt from being squished, you'll wish you'd taken up archery.

    10) They're dangerous. Thanks to the gods, keine ayinhora, I've never had a negligent discharge. With so many safety measures, that really doesn't worry me so much. However, I've caught my finger in disassembled hammers while cleaning, dropped full magazines on bare toes while putting things away, pinched my fingers in staple guns, detonated a primer while setting it (I still haven't managed to figure out WHAT I did to make that happen), had cable locks spring at me, had rifle bolts hit me in the nose, and even banged my head on a nail in my gun cabinet (TWICE!). Haven't had hot brass jump down my cleavage. I leave that to the ladies.

    There aredays I "don't like guns". Then Iprice golf clubs and ski boots and suddenly I like guns all over again.

  2. #2
    Regular Member
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    Jun 2008
    Aurora, CO , USA

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    Hehe... This one made me laugh... Yeah, they are expensive...

    I, sadly, haven't been shooting in a year due to the expense and just the general fact that I hate going to the "approved" ranges.

    I will, however, correct you on one point. Smokeless powder residue is NOT corrosive. Black powder is. In early surplus ammo, they did have some corrosive priming compounds. I haven't seen a lot of corrosive smokeless rounds in the last 10 years.

    Another thing to keep in mind is used guns aren't much like used cars. A decent inspection of a used firearm is likely to turn up most deficiencies. Buy used and save some bucks...

    My dad has turned up more than a few S&W Model 10s for around $200.

    Oh, yeah, like the "guns don't kill people" line, guns aren't dangerous. People are. Sitting on the table loaded, it's not gonna jump off and start shooting anything.

    Just my $0.02....
    A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week. --Gen. George S. Patton

    Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor, and the contrary opinion is wishful thinking at its worst. Nations and peoples who forget this basic truth have always paid for it with their lives and freedoms. - Robert Heinlein

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