Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Encrypted Ammunition? 909

holy_calamity writes "A patent has been filed for bullets with built-in encryption. Pulling the trigger sends a radio signal to the cartridge in the chamber, but the charge only goes off if the right encryption key is sent. The aim is to improve civilian firearm security." Not sure I'm quite ready to trust the average techno-gadget failure rate on something like this just yet.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Encrypted Ammunition?

Comments Filter:
  • by jl2704 ( 985153 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:35PM (#15613416)
    bult in security for firearms? bullet encryption? sounds like a huge farfetched idea that some capital went to waste on.
  • by khasim ( 1285 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:36PM (#15613432)
    So, the round is no longer fired via firing pin, but instead the gunpower is ignited by a device in the round after that device receives the correct radio signal.

    So, now your ammo will have to be protected from radio waves. And the device will have to be small enough to fit into the round yet smart enough to store the signal and check incoming signals.

    Is this a joke?
  • by Nigel_Powers ( 880000 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:36PM (#15613434)
    I'm sure the bad guys are going to line up to purchase these pgp bullets.

    This is the equivalent of bringing a knife to a gunfight.

  • by Raxxon ( 6291 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:37PM (#15613443)
    How long before someone hacks up a device to wideband broadcast random code/garbage in an attempt to make guns discharge themselves before they should?

    Imagine if world armies had this kind of hardware... load of fun I'd imagine. No need to drop 10t bombs on heavily fortified installations... Just drop one that has no explosive payload, just LOTS of EM/RF Gear in an attempt to make everyone shoot each other.

    Remember Kids! Friendly Fire, Isn't.
  • by Mullen ( 14656 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:39PM (#15613473)
    Yep, a neat idea, but really, just Gun Control with Encryption. How do I know the Government do not have the encryption keys and some how they don't disable my bullets when they want? There are much better methods of gun safety that are not this complex.

    Here are the only ways I am ever going to use this, if the police and the bad guys do it first. As soon as the police and criminals sign up for Gun Control, I will.
  • by Kohath ( 38547 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:41PM (#15613483)
    Why would I buy ammunition that's designed to fail to shoot sometimes?

  • Bad guys will wait (Score:2, Insightful)

    by brufar ( 926802 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:45PM (#15613511)
    I'm sure if you ask the bad guy he'll give you a minute to punch in your code so you can protect yourself..

    Gizmos aren't the answer, proper education and securing your firearms are. an no I wouldn't rush out to pay a premium for that functionality. When not in use I properly secure my Firearms in a safe, use a trigger lock, locked case or whatever measure is appropriate for the situation.

    I'm an avid fan of shooting sports: Skeet, Trap, CMP (Civilian Marksmanship Program), Action Pistol, Black Powder, etc.. etc.. Many of us reload our own ammunition to help keep costs down, since we go through so much ammunition in the course of an event. This silly 'invention' would make the ammo cost so much it would be difficult to afford. It would also prevent re-loaders from being able to load their own ammunition.

    Oh gee I brought the wrong ammo for this firearm looks like I am stuck, and won't be able to participate today..

    A technological crutch is no replacement for education, and owner responsibility

  • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:45PM (#15613517) Journal
    ...not to mention that it's rather beyond belief when it comes to folks (like myself) who reload their own hunting and target shooting cartridges (where you take a spent cartridge, measure it for stretch and stability, then replace primer, powder, and bullet. How on Earth is someone going to talk millions of hunters and target shooters into adding a key encryption device to their already expensive repertoire of presses, measurement tools, and cleaning equipment?

    Also, given the incredible insecurity of RFID technology, it wouldn't take much to "modify" the things.

    To top it off, how is a radio signal of sufficient strength going to get past that much lead? And what's to keep a bank robber or other criminal to carry a small EMP generator to effectively disarm any cop whose pistol is so equipped?

    Man, someone wasted a lot of money with that patent...


  • Bad idea (Score:2, Insightful)

    by cosinezero ( 833532 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:48PM (#15613539)
    1 - Adding crucial seconds to a reload is not going to increase sales of a firearm. 2 - What's saying the government doesn't demand the keys, or insist on a shutdown key sequence? That'd put an end to the 2nd amendment right there - if the government can just jam the guns of every 'insurgent' 'terrorist' cum future patriot, then who cares what the peasants own? 3 - More children die each year drowning in swimming pools... but you don't see pgp-protected ingrounds, do you?
  • Re:Guns. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by tmccann ( 775221 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:48PM (#15613544)
    When guns are illegal, only criminals will have guns.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:50PM (#15613562)
    If you ask anyone who is an expert on handguns and self-defense, "what is the most important quality in a defensive handgun", they will tell you, "having it with you when you need it is the most important thing. Second is reliability." Most gun experts hate simple things like magazine disconnects because they prevent the gun from firing when the user pulls the trigger. And now they want to introduce all this electronics and encryption? Plenty of gun owners won't put any type of electronis on guns, like sights or lasers, because they are not reliable enough.

    And it's not like criminals get their guns through legal sources anyway. They're already moving tons of drugs into the country every year. They already move thousands of guns in every year. Are they suddenly going to start installing all this circuitry into their illegal guns? []
  • Re:Guns. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by BitGeek ( 19506 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:51PM (#15613576) Homepage

    Except after outlawing them, Gun violence went up dramatically in the UK. See, the thing y'all haven't figured out is, criminals-- you know, the ones we want protection from-- thy don't follow the law. All the UK has done is make the innocent people defenseless.

    Generally, in areas with more guns, there is less crime.
  • by mabhatter654 ( 561290 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:51PM (#15613577)
    The idea of traceable ammo and secure guns has been around a while.. the whole "only criminals need guns" thing. OF Course if you ARE exercising your "4th box" rights, being labeled criminal has already happened. I think if these are so great, let's see a law to have all civilan cops [local, state, fbi, cia, nsa, etc] use these first.. and lets throw in a public database of registered keyholders. I'm sure if this is so great, Law enforcement will jump first. after all, what officer wants to be shot with is own gun.. it still happens often you know.. .gotta think of the officer's kids and all. After all, the last school shooting was done by a kid of a cop carrying his granparents weapon.. so law enforcement is a logical place to start.
  • Re:You know... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:52PM (#15613583)
    That barrier will NOT be with fire arms, that barrier will be with bombs. And you can make bombs out of pretty much anything.
  • Re:Guns (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Who235 ( 959706 ) <`secretagentx9' `at' `'> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:53PM (#15613604)
    First of all, it's the Second Amendment.

    Secondly, criminals don't care about laws - that's what makes them criminals.

    Finally, I will not live in a country where the only people allowed to have guns are the police and the military. That's a recipie for disaster.

    The Second Amendment is what makes the protection of our other rights possible.

  • by airConditionedGypsy ( 703864 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:54PM (#15613608)
    My initial reaction was also one of "wow, that's stupid", but presumably the bullet is fired by a combination of the firing pin (so, the holder of the weapon still has control) plus the radio signal. So, I don't think that guns will spontaneously go off just b/c someone guessed the right key -- you still need to pull the trigger.

    Seen the right way, it's classic two-factor authentication.

    I am guessing that the "key or signal" is delivered from a device that is perhaps embedded in the handle to read your fingerprints, RFID tag embedded in your wrist, or some other biometric.

  • Re:You know... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:56PM (#15613632)
    "I'm still holding on to a sliver of hope that a well armed citizenry is a slight barrier to a completely totalitarian govt. in the future..."

    You are really naive, aren't you ?

    The government has helicopter gunships, tanks, LAW rockets ( as well as other weapons they aren't disclosing just yet ).

    And you think that you and your guns have a chance of success ? You're just kidding yourself.

    Remember Waco, and what the bastards did there ? End of story.

    Let me point out that I wish things were not like they are, but only a fool ignores reality.

  • by Kulaid982 ( 704089 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @12:58PM (#15613662)
    We wouldn't need ridiculous things such as this if everyone would abide by the basic rules of gun safety. My grandfather taught me these when I was 4 years old:
    1. Handle every gun as though it were loaded, even if you KNOW it's not.
      2. Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction - down range, at your target, or down into the ground.
      3. Always keep the safety "on" until you are ready to shoot.
      4. Don't shoot at anything unless you intend it to die.
      5. Don't store guns loaded.
      6. Teach your children respect for guns and what they can do.
      I really think that rule 6 is the most important. I'm not saying following these rules would cure all accidental discharges, but it sure wouldn't increase the number of tragic accidents that occur.
  • by Anarke_Incarnate ( 733529 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:01PM (#15613696)
    KISS applies here. Something like this will be false security (and expensive as hell). It is more likely to get you killed when you need it, or make you rely on it instead of proper safe handling. Its as dumb as a gunlock.
  • by ScentCone ( 795499 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:01PM (#15613698)
    Whatever happened to "putting up your dukes".

    Putting up your dukes isn't very helpful against knives, or cricket bats, or just someone who is a lot larger or more drunk than you are.

    Ever occurred to you that perhaps it's cultural? I suppose someone in your neck of the woods has decided so - I mean, if your folks can't manage to just go watch a sporting event without assaulting one another [], then I suppose it makes sense that your medical community thinks that the only cure for violence is to ban objects, rather than holding people truly responsible for their actions. You know, we can't have Brits owning kitchen knives [], now, can we? After all, the only way to prevent someone from being stabbed is to ban them entirely, right?
  • by Tmack ( 593755 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:04PM (#15613735) Homepage Journal
    Will the gun have bluetooth to match bullets to guns? Could I then fire my gun from my cellphone? Or will I need a USB cable to connect my gun to my computer to program it? Being radio frequency, what happens in a high-RF environment, does the gun start shooting on its own or does it get "jammed" (or is the casing enough to shield it from outside RF)? And if I carry/own a gun for protection, how long would it take me to recognize the need to draw my weapon, enter the password correctly, then aim and shoot? Long enough for the target to stab me multiple times with a spoon?


  • Re:sounds good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NetJunkie ( 56134 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:06PM (#15613753)
    Deal! But.... everytime a kid is killed by a drunk driver you have to raise taxes on cars. If a kid meets someone on MySpace and gets assaulted you have to pay more tax on your computer purchases. Then we'll all work together to tighten up control!

    Sorry. A gun is a tool. Just like any other tool. If I hit you with a bat it doesn't mean bats need to be taxed more.
  • Re:sounds good (Score:2, Insightful)

    by chphilli ( 885315 ) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [todhsals+illihphc]> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:09PM (#15613784) Homepage Journal

    First off, I don't own a gun. That's mostly for cost reasons however ( cost of purchasing the gun, cost of ammunition, and more importantly cost of training and cost of time spent training ) . I do know several very responsible gun owners however, and I am quite glad that they do exist. Several live in areas where the extra protection to their family is welcome ( and in a couple of cases, tried and necessary ).

    Yes, I agree that gun safety is extremely important ( note the two final reasons I don't own a gun - I don't have time or money to spend on keeping myself and others safe from it ) - but it seems quite foolish to throw away the second amendment. I think I'll take the advice of the authors of the constitution over yours.

  • by jmorris42 ( 1458 ) * <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:10PM (#15613800)
    > How on Earth is someone going to talk millions of hunters and target shooters into adding a key encryption
    > device to their already expensive repertoire of presses, measurement tools, and cleaning equipment?

    They aren't going to 'talk' you into anything. They will simply pass a law, which is one of the whole points of this exercise. No sane person would ever buy any of this crap, the point is to turn the screws of gun prohibition one more turn. Raise the price of guns and ammo enough to make it a sport for the upper classes only, eliminate reloaders (who they can't otherwise control) and set the stage for the next round of 'common sense gun control.'

    > Also, given the incredible insecurity of RFID technology, it wouldn't take much to "modify" the things.

    Also totally not the point, since only criminals would do that since attempting to do so or talking about it would be illegal. qed. They don't care about criminals, they care about the lawful. And they don't care if your gun is reliable, in fact if they bacame totally unreliable they (the Brady Bunch pushing this BS) would be happy as hell.

    Join the NRA people, before it is too late. The ballot and soap boxes rest firmly atop the cartridge box, lose (or willingly surrender as your case may be) one fundamental Right and eventually you will lose them all.

  • by realmolo ( 574068 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:11PM (#15613803)
    This is something they should be using their lobbying power to stop.

    "Gun safety" is fine, but how long would it be until the U.S. government started requiring this in all firearms? And, of course, they would have all the encryption keys. And, of course, they would know how to JAM the signals.

    A lot of the reason we have a "right to bear arms" is so that we can fight the tyranny of our OWN government, if we need to. This technology would allow us to maintain that right, but make it completely ineffectual.

  • Re:Are you sure? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:12PM (#15613820)
    > "I think you're trying to kill someone, would you like some help?"

    Proving once again that Clippy is useless. If he REALLY knew how to help, I'd be asked if I want an alibi.
  • by pclminion ( 145572 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:12PM (#15613821)

    eventually we may have to worry about a criminal throwing a radio device that brute forces all the weapons in a certain radius into a secure area -- discharging every officer's weapon in the building.

    Well, the signal is supposedly encrypted so that it can't be triggered by an outside party. But that doesn't mean some outside party couldn't just broadcast a very strong NOISE signal (aka, jamming) on the same frequency, thereby disabling any gun within a few hundred feet.

    The ability to disarm every cop in the building with the push of a button. Yeah, this is a great idea!

  • Re:sounds good (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:13PM (#15613827)
    And how about we raise YOUR taxes every time someone is killed, raped, or maimed because you took away their means of defense.
  • Re:Guns. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pla ( 258480 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:20PM (#15613893) Journal
    The best way to prevent accidental firing of a gun is to outlaw them completely, like here in the UK. Many Americans cite the first ammendment and their right to defend themselves, and sure people should have a right to defend themselves. If it's hard for just anyone to get a gun though, then you're less likely to be defending yourself against a gun. Whatever happened to "putting up your dukes".

    Let me tell you a little story currently taking place in the US...

    A few years ago, Boston all-but-banned guns, and the whole state of Massachusetts has extremely restrictive gun laws in general.

    Since then, the level of gun crime there has gone UP, drastically.

    Now, MA has three neighbors to the North - VT, NH, and ME, all of which have a healthy tradition of personal gun ownership, largely for hunting purposes.

    All three of those states have very low rates of gun crime.

    So how does Boston respond to this glaringly obvious trend?

    A PR campaign trying to get its Northern neighbors (and a few other random states) to all but ban guns as well.

    As a resident of one of those states, I have to laugh at how absurd they sound - Not only for ignoring the obvious fact that gun control increases gun crimes, but also that, at least with current attituteds, even if the federal government banned guns, the Northern New England states would most likely secede rather than comply.

    If it's hard for just anyone to get a gun though, then you're less likely to be defending yourself against a gun.

    Do you have any idea of the level of tech required to build a basic firearm? Not talking about a "safe to use" firearm, or an extremely accurate one, but a device capable of accelerating a small projectile in a specific direction (more or less) to sufficient velocity to penetrate a human body?

    Pretty freakin' low. If you actually have modern mass-produced cartridges, you can literally do it with the contents of a typical desk drawer. Without that, it takes a $20 trip to the hardware store.

    Whatever happened to "putting up your dukes".

    Ever seen Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom?

    Or on a more serious note - An oppressive government doesn't fight fair. They don't line up mano-a-mano and whichever side wins gets to lead like some cheesy 1950's Western. And while a 9mm might not do much when the tanks start rolling over students a la Tiennamen Square, a fully armed populace means that, at least in theory, an oppressive government would need to kill every man, woman, and reasonably-old-enough child to keep control over... Over a population of corpses.
  • by ScentCone ( 795499 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:22PM (#15613916)
    When was the last time you, or ANYONE you know, had to shoot a firearm in self defence? Do you really live in an area that is more dangerous than Baghdad?

    That's the whole point of having a gun. The fact that it exists, as a deterrent, generally reduces the need to actually shoot it. In areas where right-to-carry is present, violent crimes go down. In areas (or whole countries) where guns are banned, violent crimes go way up.

    But in cases where the conceptual deterrent isn't really registering with some punk, the far, far more common defense is called "brandishing." Showing someone the gun and a willingness to use it generally defuses the situation. I have personally been in that situation with a completely drug-addled bruiser beating on our back door in the middle of the night. The cops were 15 minutes in arriving, but his willingness to continue to beat down the door ended when he saw the business end of a gun pointed at him.

    And, I guess you don't get out past the shopping mall much, huh? Ever dealt with a poisonous snake cornered in a barn? A 160-pound wounded buck crashing around your back yard? A rabid raccoon threatening a domestic pet? A coyote stalking your neighborhood kids and animals? A mountain lion raiding a camp site? People use guns in self defense all the time - thousands and thousands of times a year, against people and critters. I have, more than once. Many people I know have. Your ignorance is showing.
  • Basically... Yes. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by quincunx55555 ( 969721 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:23PM (#15613930)
    FTA - ...This would only happen if a password entered into the gun using a tiny keypad matched one stored in the cartridge.

    When they are sold, cartridges could be programmed with a password that matches the purchaser's gun. An owner could set the gun to request the password when it is reloaded, or to perform a biometric check before firing. The gun could also automatically lock itself after a pre-set period of time has passed since the password was entered.

    The system would undoubtedly cost more than a conventional gun, but many firearm enthusiasts would surely pay a premium for such added security.

    So, I can only use this ammo in one firearm (too bad if I have another with the same calibre), then while dodging my assailaints bullets, I'm entering in a password. If I get the password wrong, or the solid state switch fails (*gasp!*), then I've got to try again, but the pre-set period of time re-locks the gun. For anyone dumb enough to buy this, I hope your assailant has bad aim! btw, firearm enthusiasts will not "surely pay a premium" as there is no "added security".

    I've noticed this paradigm with new handguns that were designed in the last 5 years. Trying to make them safer so little Johnny doesn't blow his brains out on accident, but making the firearm near useless as a defense tool. Considering ~300% more children die each year from 5 gallon buckets, I don't think "safe guns" are a needed focus.
  • by bhima ( 46039 ) <Bhima.Pandava@gmail. c o m> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:24PM (#15613943) Journal
    do you honestly think the "right to bear arms" could have any effect on fighting the tyranny of the US government?

    How? I'd hazard the guess that you'd be labled a terrorist and prosecuted.
  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:24PM (#15613944)
    Guns are, essentially, very simple devices. You slam the bullet's back, the powder ignites, the charge is propelled forwards. Simple, proven technology that works like a dream.

    Yes, safety is an issue, but 9 out of 10 accidents happen with people who don't know JACK about handling guns or are in no shape or condition to handle one. Does it happen to expert weaponsmiths who handle them on a daily base? To people who spend more time at the shooting range than at home?

    It happens to people who do not know how to safety handle a gun.

    If you want to "secure" guns, make it a law that you have to store them in a safe place, out of the reach of kids and people unable to handle them properly. But a device like that is ridiculous at best, dangerous at worst.

    So the bullet ignites if it gets the right signal. Can we forsee some "pranksters" running around trying to figure out the frequency on cop guns? What are we gonna call it, warblowing? Imagine a firefight where the cop suddenly gets "shot" with high-freqency radio signals from the geek he's fighting, pretty much blowing his gun up in his hand. Would work, the bullets are "hot", after all he planned to use them.

    There are a lot of dangerous loopholes that could be easily abused by criminals (and law enforcement) alike. If you want to increase gun security, teach people how to handle them properly instead of trying to keep them out of their hands!

    Another example of "why security by obscurity is a failed design".
  • Bad idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by blate ( 532322 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:29PM (#15613981)
    This is truly one of the wost ideas I've ever heard and it only highlights prevalent misconceptions with respect to firearms safety.

    Modern guns, themselves, are not inherently unsafe. Guns do not spontaneously jump up and shoot people. Guns only discharge when the trigger is pulled; while this can occur unintentionally, e.g., due to a dog stepping on the trigger of a loaded, unsafed gun left laying on the ground (don't laugh, this does happen!), almost 100% of such incidents are due to NEGLIGENCE.

    Nearly all incidents of unintended or illegal shootings are due to negligence, lack of training and practice, or intentional criminal activity. Negligence includes such actions as: allowing unauthorized access to a weapon by a minor, pointing a weapon at something other than a target or a safe downrange area, and placing one's finger on the trigger when the weapon is not pointed in a safe direction. Lack of training and practice leads to negligence; there are numerous incidents of police officers, who, in principle, should be some of the best-trained firearms handlers among us, who have shot themselves in the foot or leg while handling their own weapons.

    At the end of the day, it is the person, the gun owner, who is responsible for safety. When a gun discharges, it is because of someone's actions; full stop. It's not the gun's fault and it's not the manufacturer's fault.

    We also must remember that the purpose of most weapons -- handguns, assault rifles, tactical shotguns, etc. -- is for defensive or offensive use against other humans. Put more simply: they're designed to stop human adversaries, by injury or death. In principle, their use, particularly by civilians, should be very infrequent. I am a relatively highly-trained defensive shooter; I believe that I am capable of defending myself, my family, and my home, should the need arise. But I hope and pray that I never need to do so. I think that most police will tell you that they hope to have to shoot a suspect, but that they are trained and prepared to do so to protect others or themselves.

    If and when, however, the time comes that a weapon is needed, one must be supremely confident in the reliability of the weapon. This means that simpler is necessarily better. When you pull the trigger, you want to hear "BANG", not "click" or "beep". You don't want to have to fiddle with magic decoder rings, tiny keys, batteries and secret codes, etc. in the dark, under pressure, with your child screaming in the background. And a cop can't be worrying about passwords and encrypted ammunition in the heat of a pursuit. He must know that his weapon will fire when he pulls the trigger -- he's betting his life on it.

    The technology described in this article is just another way to make owning firearms more difficult and more expensive. Criminals, by definition, have no regard for laws. You can make all guns illegal and the bad guys will still find a way to arm themselves. Look at Chicago or Washington, DC for prime examples. Those of you in Austraila and Britian have seen a rise in violent crime, including home invasions and broad-daylight robberies, since you banned guns.

    The technological achievement expressed in this article is impressive. I'm happy that people are exploring the uses of modern computer and cryptographic techniques. But be skeptical and wary as well... Your rights are at stake here.

  • The truth is, it doesn't really matter if the fact is true or not. It's clearly supposed to give the impression that owning a gun is somehow dangerous, and by implication more dangerous than not owning a gun. But the following example (with completely made-up statistics) shows how the fact could be true, and still not be anti-gun at all.

    20% of non-gun users are shot once in their lifetime (100% by guns they don't own/carry)
    10% of gun-owners/carriers are shot once in their lifetime (55% by guns they do own/carry)

    So if you own a gun (in this secnario) you have a 5.5% chance of being shot with it, a 4.5% chance of being shot with someone elses. If you don't own a gun, you have a 20% chance of being shot with someone elses. Which odds do you like better?

    But another way: Sure, the gun you carry may be the most likely to shoot you, but it's entirely possible that this is because the gun someone else carries doesn't do them any good after you shoot them for breaking into your house.

    The point is that it's just a worthless statistic that sounds scary without actually signifying anything.

  • by SuperBanana ( 662181 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:35PM (#15614042)

    ...I think that with firearms, this is the ONE aread I don't think I want any technological saftey restraints on. I want to keep it mechanical. I want it to shoot immediately at what I aim at. I virus, bug or whatever that causes firing errors at the wrong time can be a life or death thing.

    I'm sure some slaphappy mod will label me a troll, but if your side is valid, so is mine: all too often it is a "death thing", and it is people's inability to control themselves that results in inventions like "cryptograhic bullets". Too many gun owners simply can't control themselves OR their guns.

    I'm still holding on to a sliver of hope that a well armed citizenry is a slight barrier to a completely totalitarian govt. in the future...

    Did you sleep through history class? In our own country: Women's suffrage movement, civil rights movement, and protests against Vietnam. In Europe, several brutal dictatorships were overthrown by masses of people who simply showed up at their leader's buildings and said "we're not going anywhere until you leave." None of these movements involved guns in the hands of protestors, shooting at the powers-that-be.

    Being unarmed is the most effective way to protest- violence against you is viewed as fairly heinous by most of the population, if not a large chunk of the "free" world; the issue becomes less -your- issue and more the fact that the existing government was willing to shoot you. Two famous examples would include the Boston Massacre* and Kent State. Being unarmed, you take a chance that the policeman or soldier on the other side of that barrier is too "human" to shoot a massive crowd of peaceful, unarmed people. If it's not worth that risk- I guess what you're protesting isn't important enough to you, or you are a coward.

    *(which is somewhat disputed by historians- some think there were a few guns among colonialists, but the end result was that British soldiers were seen as having mowed down unarmed civilians)

  • by aaronl ( 43811 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:45PM (#15614143) Homepage
    I hope you get modded up, actually. I think that firearm ownership is a necessary and important right. I also think that if you have guns, then you aren't protesting; you're rebelling.

    As for people controlling themselves... freedom is also the freedom to make mistakes. You punish the mistakes, but don't restrict people to supposedly "prevent" them. That doesn't work. You can't use the government to fix a social problem.

    The civil rights movement did use guns, as did suffrage, just not by the general population. The threat of government force through police actions was an important factor. The *protesters* did not use guns, though.

    Once the government is willing to use guns against the populace, the populace needs a way to defend itself. Protest won't work at that point. History will show the use of deadly government force as heinous, but that does not help when you are in the thick of it. Your two examples are examples nearing that breaking point. People were protesting, the government used force, and in one case the people rebelled, in the other there was a lot of legal action, and additional protest.
  • by jmorris42 ( 1458 ) * <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:50PM (#15614199)
    > Guns are not a fundamental right. Not in my country, anyway.

    Hope you see my point then. That if you weaken any of the Fundamental Human Rights they all suffer. And whether or not your government is oppressing you or not, the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, to defend oneself against those who would use Force against you whether they be common brigands or a government run amok, are Fundamental Human Rights everywhere. It is no coincidence that the only nation state to enshrine ALL of the basic Human Rights in our highest laws is also the most free and prosperous nation in history. Doing do has allowed our system of government to withstand a century of determined effort to overthrow it by Socialism.
  • Re:sounds good (Score:4, Insightful)

    by isotope23 ( 210590 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:50PM (#15614201) Homepage Journal
    "But I have a simpler, safer solution: lose your gun altogether. I think every time a kid is killed by a stray bullet we raise a tax on guns and gun owners. You can get all of that money back with interest if you get rid of your gun. Eventually gun owners will see that it is in their own best interest to work together to make guns safer and out of the hands of kids and the irresponsible. Everyone who owns a gun is partly responsible for the culture of guns and violence. I'm looking at you, libertarians."

    Bull. That is like saying everyone who drives is responsible for drunk drivers killing people, or that the library is responsible for weapons of mass destruction because they have chemistry books. A gun is a TOOL. Like every tool it has valid uses and invalid ones.

    As for your comment about a culture of violence, get a grip and check out the REAL world. Violence will not disappear if private citizens lose their guns. The Hutus were very effective using machetes. The Nazis and the Soviets both killed millions. Violence is a fact of life. You can not wish it away. If your response when threatened with violence is cowering, then you are cattle and will be treated as such.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:51PM (#15614214)
    In areas (or whole countries) where guns are banned, violent crimes go way up.

    Yes, like Canada, one of the most violent places to live...
  • by daVinci1980 ( 73174 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:51PM (#15614215) Homepage
    You are an idiot. Because the statistics [] simply don't agree with you.

    But you're also an idiot because legislating gun laws isn't going to do a damn bit of good. 80% of guns used in crimes (That's eight-zero-percent) were purchased or obtained through illegal means [].

    Plus, guns were used in only 6% of the 4.8 MILLION violent crimes that took place in 2004. (Also from the same website).

    That's okay though, you're probably the same guy who thinks it's okay that the government is spying on its citizens and shredding our constitution as long as it makes you safer. Insert applicable Liberty / Security / deserve neither quote here.

  • by RangerRick98 ( 817838 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:52PM (#15614230) Journal
    Except that this sort of thing has the same kind of effect as, say, DRM. It inconveniences or restricts legitimate users with additional roadblocks to using their firearms in situations like self defense or recreation, while those who would run around shooting people would find a way around the restriction and keep shooting anyway.
  • This won't work! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by g1gg13r ( 950003 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:57PM (#15614290)
    Something like this has been tried before, but failed because the guns wouldn't fire a lot of the time. The previous experiment was guns that do not fire when they are more than a few inches from the owner. Great idea, but it failed in practice.

    This particular idea is actually worse. How exactly does encryption help? Do I enter a password to unlock my secret key every time I fire the gun? If so, I'd rather take my chances defending myself with a knife. If I don't have to authenticate myself to the gun somehow, then what is the point of the encryption? Maybe to ensure that there won't be any third-party bullet manufacturers... kinda like inkjet cartridges. What's next? Cheap guns with very expensive bullets, because you can only buy the bullets manufactured by the gun manufacturer?
  • by Splab ( 574204 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:59PM (#15614300)
    What a load of crap!

    When you raise the barrier, the other guy will follow! Thats why the world "leaders" got nukes, when someone ups the ante you fold or follow. Thats why most homocides here in Denmark are done with knifes - we haven't raised the stakes to guns! If people started showing off guns homocides would increase, with knifes you can try to run and defuse the situation, with a gun you got big trouble.
  • by ArmyOfFun ( 652320 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @01:59PM (#15614307)
    do you honestly think the "right to bear arms" could have any effect on fighting the tyranny of the US government?
    Look at the Iraq war. It's an even better example than the Vietnam war that a determined yet totally unorganized resistance armed with nothing more than explosives and light to medium firearms, can mount an effective counter-resistance to the US government. Despite all the labeling and prosecution of those in Gitmo and Abu Ghraib, there is still an effective resistance. Now, Iraq is not the US, but it does show it's possible if enough of the populace supports your cause.

    Disclaimer: I do not support the Iraqi resistance/terrorists/freedom fighters/whatever nor do I support a violent or armed overthrow of the US government. Every 2-4 years we get our chance for a peaceful revolution, and this system has worked more or less ok for roughly 230 years.
  • Here's a fun exercise.

    Let's make handguns look dangerous first. Then we can say:

    A gun kept in the home is 22 times more likely to be used in a homicide, suicide or unintentional shooting than to be used in self-defense.

    - Kellerman AL, Lee RK, Mercy JA, et al. "The Epidemiological Basis for the Prevention of Firearm Injuries." Annu. Rev. Public Health. 1991; 12:17-40

    Of course, there's no way to determine how many lives were actually saved by the presence of guns in the homes. Either a potential robber is an acquaintance of the home and doesn't want to rob where there are guns, or there's a posted "I have a gun" sign so a stranger is deterred, or there's just the general fact that criminals know that home invasion in the U.S. is like Russian roulette. Sooner or later you invade the wrong home and find a shotgun. That's why I own a 12-gauge. Not just for my own protection, but to be just one more reason for people to not risk attacking my neighbors either (regardless of whether or not they own a gun, I don't know). I looked for the rates of home invasion, which I believe are increasing in Canada and the UK, but could not find them.

    In 2003 there were 44,800 unintentional motor vehicle deaths in the U.S. I'm assuming that the number of intentional motor vehicle deaths is negligible. ( According to Wikipedia there were over 243 million passenger cars in the US.

    In 2003 there were 30,136 gun deaths in the U.S. The majority - 56% - were from suicide. 40% were from homicide. And then there were 2% unintentional and 2% unknown. ( There are over 200 million guns in the United States. ( /ihavearightto/four_b/casestudy_art29.shtml)

    If you do the math, this means that cars - which, by the way, aren't intended to kill people, are more dangerous to American citizens than guns - which are designed to kill people. You should also consider that a lot (nobody knows how many) of the suicides and murders from guns would have been accomplished without guns anyway. Guns make it easier to kill, but they don't generally make people want to commit murder/suicide for no reason. And remember, the accidental gun death totals were less than 1,000 for all of 2003. So in terms of accidents there's not even a comparison between guns and cars: cars are more dangerous by orders of magnitude.

    Oh yeah, and it's probably the car you own that is most likely to kill you too.

  • by radarjd ( 931774 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:05PM (#15614362)
    Did you sleep through history class? In our own country:

    Our own country (by which I presume you mean the US) was also founded via armed rebellion against a monarch. It seems unlikely any amount of non-violent protest would have resulted in such foundation, at least at that time.

    At some point, you have to have an option if non-violent protest does not work. If you have no guns, you have no option. Moreover, you have no threat of such an option. You simply can say "we're going to protest more."

    Maybe it'll work... historically it works sometimes and not others. I wouldn't want to be caught in the "not others" column without any option to escalate things.

  • by bcattwoo ( 737354 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:06PM (#15614374)
    So you get a risk of the gun not shooting when you need it to on the con side, and the very narrow pro that if someone steals the gun but doesn't have time/know-how to bypass the security, they can't fire it. They can still fire it if they are fighting you for it or if they have a little bit of time to work on it.

    I'm not sure that the pro is really that narrow. I would think that most instances of someone getting shot with their own gun, especially for law enforcement, occur within seconds of it being stolen. If there is a struggle for the gun, the owner can just release the gun if they are in danger of being shot. I would presume that the technology is good enough that the owner could get away before the security could be bypassed.

  • by ScentCone ( 795499 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:07PM (#15614377)
    So what you're saying is that you think it's okay to kill anything by which you feel threatened, anywhere, anytime. Basically, you're an immoral person employing a doctrine of pre-emption in life.

    Do you actually even think about what you're saying, or connect your response in any way to what you're reading? Just because I've cited circumstances in which lethal force, or the reserved option to use it, makes sense doesn't mean that every encounter with anything unpleasant is best dealt with that way.

    Pre-emption would mean that if I see someone on the street that I'm pretty sure is going to try to break down my door in the middle of the night, that I do something about him before he acts. But I don't have that luxury, or generally the ability to even draw that conclusion. So, how is it "pre-emptive" to react to someone or something that is actually, literally, right that moment, being a threat? That's the opposite of pre-emption, and being hesitant under those circumstances frequently results in later regret. I've hesitated to deal with a diseased-looking feral cat, thinking that nature would just run its course... only to have it attack and infect a pet (also nature running its course, but if you're going to disrupt nature by doing things like domesticating animals in the first place, you've got a certain obligation to step in).

    Basically, you're an immoral person

    Really! So, how does putting a rabid animal out of its misery and thus preventing the likely (and horrid) death of other animals qualify as "immoral?" How does stopping a person who is, quite literally, terrifying your family in the middle of the night qualify as immoral? It's moral if I pay someone else to do it (say, the police), but it's immoral if I do it myself, with the urgent threat actually unfolding and about to escalate to actual injuries before the police could possibly arrive to help? Better to explain to your injured family that you were just doing the moral thing? These aren't hypotheticals, this is actual person experience. That you're so anxious to grind your witless anti-American axe in this way - especially given the context - says plenty about how distorted your view is.
  • by ScentCone ( 795499 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:22PM (#15614526)
    why most homocides here in Denmark are done with knifes - we haven't raised the stakes to guns!

    Come on, now, read some actual statistics! In counties like Australia, where the guns were banned and largely confiscated, not only to knife-murders go up, but overall crime and murder went up entirely. Fewer guns in the hands of people willing to defend themselves, and people willing to kill with a knife or their bare hands are less worried about being stopped. This is true in certain states/cities in the US (say, in Florida, where once people were recently allowed once again to carry a gun, knifings went down, as did all violent crime).

    Most likely the longer Danish history of less violent crime has to do with having a smaller, less stratified population in a much smaller area. As your population so dramatically shifts (with your huge immigration issues), you may see a situation much more similar to that of the Paris suburbs. I hope not ... I'd like to visit Denmark some day, since I have had many ancestors from there and elsewhere in Scandinavia (Rasmussens, Kuykendaals, Hendrixes, and more) and I guess I still have some hope that I can see some Danish countryside that still feels a bit like it was when they lived there.
  • Ah... downmodded.

    You always hope against experience that the slashdot mods aren't going to mod based on their politics, but it always happens. What's with the "overrated" mods anyway? I don't think I've ever given out a negative mod myself. The point is to find good points to mod up, not to piss on people's arguments if you feel offended. What good can come of downmodding?

    Anyway, in the spirit of hunting for "overrated" mods, I found out that I had left out some additional interesting info I'm sure some doe-eyed liberal can take horrible offense at. It's a better response to the Kellermen quote I listed above than the one I included in my own post.

    Emory University medical professor Arthur Kellermann is a one-man factory of this type of misleading data. One of his most famous studies purported to show that owning a gun is associated with a 2.7 times greater risk of being murdered. Kellermann compared murder victims in several cities with sociologically similar people a few blocks away in those cities, who had not been murdered. The 2.7 factoid was trumpeted all over the country; but the study is patently illogical. First of all, Kellermann's own data show that owning a security system, or renting a home rather than owning it, are also associated with equally large increased risks of death. Yet newspapers did not start running dire stories warning people to rip out their burglar alarms or to start lobbying their condo association to dissolve. The 2.7 factoid also overlooks the obvious fact that one reason people choose to own guns, or to install burglar alarms, is that they are already at higher risk of being victimized by crime. As Yale law professor John Lott points out, Kellermann's methodology is like comparing 100 people who went to a hospital in a given year with 100 similar people who did not, finding that more of the hospital patients died, and then announcing that hospitals increase the risk of death. Kellermann's method would also prove that possession of insulin increases the risk of diabetes.

    From wikipedia. ( United_States#Self-defense_and_gun_violence)

    I guess the lesson should be to beware of statistics. Take the car insurance stat you hear all the time. "Our users saved an average of x when they switched to us!" What does that really mean? It took an average savings of x to induce someone to switch. If you said "our users saved an average of 10,000 by switching!" what would that mean? Well first of all, it may be that only .01% of people who got quotes saved any money at all. And secondly, it could easily mean that their service is so awful people have to save $10,000 a year before they consider it worthwhile to switch. So the stat means either nothing, or means that the company has bad service. And yet it's quoted all the time.

    But in the gun-rights debate, it seems that the "save the children" crowd are the ones most prone to either make up random statistics or misuse actual ones.

  • by morcego ( 260031 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:31PM (#15614626)
    Actually, it doesn't.
    They are not a fundamental right in my country even.
    Don't get me wrong. You can still get a gun legaly. It is just not "shop, buy, done". You have to register it with the local authorities (police), have no criminal record and follow a few other rules. As long as you plan to keep your gun in your home, it is fairly straightforward. Carrying a gun is, on the other hand, much more complex. To get a carrying permit, you will have, among other things, to prove you have a real need for it.

    Interesting enough, there some some studies around here that prove that more than 40% of the guns owned by criminals were stolen from people who legaly owned them. I don't have the exact number, but once I saw an article on a newspaper saying it was more than 70% (not that likely, tho). So you have to consider you are also providing the criminals with guns.

    Add to that the fact that a criminal will be more proficient with a gun than 99% of the people how are being attacked, and that he is much more prone to shoot if he sees you too have a gun, and you even have a bit more of a mess.

    I'm not against owning guns. I'm againt irresponsible gun ownership, which you have in most (all?) of the states in USA. So the first thing that comes to your mind about having a gun is "right" ? To me, the first thing is "responsibility".
  • Then why do Texas CC permit holders have a lower rate of gun crime than the rest of the population?
  • by Martin Blank ( 154261 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:49PM (#15614785) Homepage Journal
    And yet the police are the first group to demand exemptions from legal requirements placed on gun owners. They don't want rings that authenticate the firing party, they want to keep high-capacity magazines, and they want to maintain access to weapons that civilians cannot usually buy.
  • by visgoth ( 613861 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:49PM (#15614792)
    I feel safer without a hyena, in fact most people around here don't own a hyena (Canada) - and lo and behold, we rarely see deaths from hyenas.
  • by harrkev ( 623093 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:53PM (#15614825) Homepage
    To get a carrying permit, you will have, among other things, to prove you have a real need for it.
    That is a problem. Prove to me that you have a real need for free speech. Prove to me that you have a right to privacy. Prove to me that you have a real need for any basic right. If you have to prove that you need them, then it may already be too late.

    I'm not against owning guns. I'm againt irresponsible gun ownership, which you have in most (all?) of the states in USA. So the first thing that comes to your mind about having a gun is "right" ? To me, the first thing is "responsibility".
    On this, we agree completely. Unfortunately, you can't outlaw stupidity. The best bet in this area is education. But the only group in America that does this type of education is the NRA, and they get attacked for it.
  • by spun ( 1352 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:53PM (#15614829) Journal
    I love the Important Capitals. They show that you are speaking of Fundamentally Important Things.

    Funny, I would put the right to have enough to eat as more basic than the right to bear arms, while I'm sure you'd call that socialism. I call protecting your government sanctioned monopoly on your property socialism. What do non-property owners get out of upholding the rights of property holders? The government is subsidizing your right to hold private property by protecting your property through the initiation of force.

    There are no Fundamental Human Rights. There are only rights that we as a society deem important. Appeal to authority all you like, capitalize any word you want, that still doesn't change the fact that without society, there are no rights. With society, there are only the rights that society says are important. Just because you use Important Capitals and call it Fundamental doesn't mean anyone has to agree with you. We as a society choose what rights to uphold based on pragmatism, not Nature, and not God.

    The US interpretation of basic human rights does not coincide with the UN definition of basic human rights. By UN standards, the US does not provide most basic human rights. As the UN definition is more all-encompasing, wouldn't it be fair to say their list is even more basic and important? Or does the fact that the US did it a certain way automatically mean that that list is the best, most fundamental list of rights?

    Who decides?
  • by BobSutan ( 467781 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:54PM (#15614832)
    I guess they need to roll this out en mass for those that use firearms on a daily basis in order to make sure its safe for civilian use. I'll tell ya what. How about you do all the field testing with the police and military and then come talk to me.

    Oh, what's that? Their firearms are already safe? Oh, well then if our existing firearms are already good enough for the police and military then it must be good enough for me!
  • I like how we love to forget history. How can the peasants fight back against their masters without the means to defend themselves? If the people can only grab onto pitch forks as we revolt against a man in a castle with a legion of knights and footsoldiers it'll be pretty damn hard. The way history unfolded before 1800 led our forefathers to make the decisions they made which are still relevant now. Think about it, they're still right.
  • by the grace of R'hllor ( 530051 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @02:58PM (#15614859)
    Hope you see my point then. That if you weaken any of the Fundamental Human Rights they all suffer. And whether or not your government is oppressing you or not, the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, to defend oneself against those who would use Force against you whether they be common brigands or a government run amok, are Fundamental Human Rights everywhere. It is no coincidence that the only nation state to enshrine ALL of the basic Human Rights in our highest laws is also the most free and prosperous nation in history. Doing do has allowed our system of government to withstand a century of determined effort to overthrow it by Socialism.

    You must be trolling. The right to bear arms is an American one, not an intrinsic human right. It's no coincidence that the US has the largest number of murders per capita either.

    Besides that, when you live in a nation that violates human rights on the scale of the US, what with its torture camps/secret prisons, its kidnapping and forced deportation of innocent citizens, you might not want to flaunt your freedom, prosperity and adherence to human rights so much.

  • While I can't comment on the situation in your country, the truth of the matter is that here in the U.S., most guns that are used in crimes are obtained illegally, and many of them are imported illegally. (Further down in this discussion someone links to the DOJ page where this is discussed in detail.)

    There's no reason to think that if it became tougher for law-abiding citizens to get guns, that it would be any harder for criminals to do so. After all, we've more or less admitted that we cannot, as a country, stop thousands of people from literally walking across our borders (both the northern and southern one). Now consider how much easier it is to move a gun than a person -- guns don't need air or water and don't mind being stuck in the false bottom of a crate for a few months (or years). You can't sniff them out like drugs or bombs, and it's not hard to take them apart so that they're hard to pick out on an x-ray. In short, there's not any way (at least not feasibly, without completely changing how we run our borders) to prevent guns from being imported illegally.

    Not to mention the fact that guns really don't wear out (at least not quickly, under typical use; machine guns excepted), and even if you could somehow magically stop all illegal importation, it would take centuries to use up the supply of guns already in criminals' hands.

    The single effect that disarming legitimate owners would have, or even making it substantially harder for legitimate citizens to obtain guns, would be to raise the ratio of guns owned by criminals to guns owned by law-abiding people. The numbers don't substantiate the legitimate-owners-supplying-crime arguement, at least in this country.

    Also, your theory about criminals being more proficient with guns than most civilian gun owners is also false. Criminals, for the most part, don't go down to the range and practice very often: their guns get used when they're committing crimes, and I doubt they want to draw attention to themselves by doing a lot of target practice. It doesn't take much skill to pick up a gun and wave it around, or to shoot someone from a few feet away; certainly it's nothing like the skill that's required for even the most basic target shooting exercises, or hunting (which a fairly large number of rural and suburban gun owners in the United States are involved with). Even if we factor in the gun owners who don't actually shoot regularly, but just have a gun for defense purposes and have perhaps taken it down to the range once or twice, I think you're vastly overestimating the skills of criminals. Trust me -- I've seen the aftermath of some urban shootings, and there's a lot of "spray and pray" involved.

    I agree that owning a firearm carries with it a certain responsibility. However, where I disagree with you is that we should deny that responsibility to an otherwise law-abiding adult by default. In my country, our entire society is predicated on the assumption that everyone is worthy of a host of important responsibilities (including voting, serving in the military, drinking alcohol), if they haven't done anything to prove that they can't handle it. In geek terms, we've created a society that has "allow by default" as its basic policy with regards to its citizens. An adult who has not done anything wrong and is of normal intelligence and sound mind, should not have to prove their worthiness to some authority in order to own a gun. I have no problem denying this responsibility to people who have shown that they can't handle it (similarly, I have no problem denying to people who've demonstrated a propensity for violence many other rights that normal people enjoy, including life itself if the situation warrants it), but there's a key difference between a system that assumes that the average person is capable of making important decisions, including ones regaring gun ownership, and a system which assumes only a select few are capable or should be allowed this and other responsibilities.
  • by Marful ( 861873 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @03:14PM (#15614987)
    Mr. Doug, are you aware what an "Ingram Mac 10" is?

    Next, I must ask, are aware of the legalities of owning an "Ingram Mac 10", particularly in california?

    Well, its really simple. They aren't legal to own or purchase without a speciall highly restrictive license that only special firearms sellers can get. (Class 3)

    So, giving that the "Ingram Mac 10" is illegal to own in california, and that it is no longer being produced, why is it that I can buy one in South Central Los Angeles for $245?

    The argument that "they're stolen from all the people in the country who own them" is hard to believe, when they are not legal in California, and have not been since the 70's.

    But you see, we have this little thing to the south of us, here in California, called "Mexico".

    Where, well frankly, no one there gives a damn about doing illegal acts.

    It is so easy to smuggle guns across our southern border, its not even funny. Its downright scary actually.

    I am reminded of an old saying:

      "If catapults are outlawed, only outlaws will have catapults."

    Just recently the 1984 Assault weapon ban expired. Now that it has expired, have you seen or heard of a rash of "Police shoot outs with automatic weapons" or "Killing sprees" by people with weapons that were banned in the 1984 Assault Weapon ban?

    I'd like to see this evidence you speak of, claiming that "Of course they're mostly obtained illegally; they're stolen from all the people in the country who own them. If you all didn't own then, they would be must harder to steal, wouldn't they? "

    Your naiveté is so astounding, I am almost at a loss of words!. Almost, since I've seen so many ignorant people. Wake up. Go see a movie titled "God of War." (Since you seem to be very susceptible to media propaganda and influence). Read up about the REAL PERSON the movie was based on.

    Sure, there are a portion of crimes committed with legally owned firearms. And there is a portion committed with legally owned firearms, that were stolen from their legal owners. But you are misrepresenting the proportions of these demographics.

    Stop and think how much violence and death is caused by cars? And of these, how many are caused by stolen vehicles? Yet I don't see people like you lobbying to outlaw cars. Simply put, if there were much less cars, there would be less people killed by them! DUH!!!!

    So, in conclusion. Quit reading Michael Moore. Quit wrapping your lips around the media and propaganda, and support lets see the facts where you are claiming that "they're mostly obtained illegally; they're stolen from all the people in the country who own them." And when you do, you need to differentiate violent crime, from accidental deaths.

    Like another poster mentioned, there are more accidental deaths from buckets and plastic bags than accidental discharges.

    Shouldn't you be complaining about them?
  • by Danse ( 1026 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @03:26PM (#15615096)
    If guns were less readily available then they couldn't be a) stolen or b) purchased illegally as easily. If you get rid of the supply then fewer of the remaining guns would be available to be used in violent crimes.

    Ok, now ask me if I really care whether the big guy invading my home has a gun or a knife or a baseball bat that he wants to kill me with. I really don't care what weapon he has. I want the most effective weapon I can get for self-defense. That's a gun. Hands down.

    If you removed 95% of guns from society then that remaining 5% would have to be responsible for all of the gun related crimes... Any dent that you can make in that 5% would also be a dent in gun related crimes...

    First of all, there's absolutely no way to get rid of the guns. As long as there is a demand somewhere, anywhere, there will be plenty of guns available. We can't seem to prevent massive amounts of drugs from being brought into the country. Do you really think we can prevent guns from being brought in? Second, what do you believe people are going to use to protect themselves? Women should all be at the mercy of anyone who breaks into their home? Smaller guys are at the mercy of bigger guys who break in? The police can't and won't protect people, so we're all responsible for protecting ourselves. That's a simple fact of life.
  • by Valdrax ( 32670 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @03:29PM (#15615131)
    What percentage of card-carrying NRA members voted against this administration that's been actively working on trampling the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 14th Amendments all so long as they promised to protect the 2nd -- The Only Amendment That Matters (tm). How many in fact have howled their support for every single abridgement of freedom offered up in the name of fighting terrorism?

    Let's face it. Most modern day gun owners are more likely to think that security is freedom and are the most dedicated supporters of everything that is being done to tear the Constitution in half.

    I know a couple of dedicated gun owners who aren't this way, but they're definitely in the minority in my experience.
  • by menace3society ( 768451 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @04:25PM (#15615635)
    The NRA doesn't get attacked for gun safety education; they get attacked for being a reactionary-conservative lobbying group that wants to make guns easier to obtain. Nobody had a problem with them until the early 1990s, when they started getting involved in the Republican campagin machine.
  • by harrkev ( 623093 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @04:51PM (#15615865) Homepage
    As to the "easier to obtain" part, no. They simply want to stop useless inconvenient measures that do not do much. I already own a couple of firearms, but if I want to get a new .22 pistol just to poke holes in paper, I have to wait three days. It does not matter that if my goal was to actually hurt somebody, I already have much better tools than a .22.

    As to the support of republicans: you don't see Bush signing more gun control measures. Clinton signed the useless "assault weapon" ban whose goal was to ban anything which looked scary, facts be damned. After that bill passed, if you died at the front of a rifle, it was brown and not black.

    Republicans generally support the 2nd amendment, and Democrats are constantly trying to weaken it. I realize that there are individual exceptions, but this is true in most cases. So of course the NRA tends to support republicans. I certainly wish that the NRA would support some democrats, but first some democrats have to come out and say that private gun ownership is a good idea -- but that goes against the party line.

    I have several reasons to be resentful of President Bush, but his stance on the 2nd amendment is not one of them.
  • by SpaceCadetTrav ( 641261 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @04:55PM (#15615912) Homepage
    If any part of the ABS system fails in your car, the brakes still work.
  • by Wog ( 58146 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @04:56PM (#15615916)

    I'm not as big or as strong as a lot of folks out there. If somehow the Glock 23 I'm wearing didn't work, how would you expect me to defend myself from a meth-head with a knife?

    Far from being an unfair advantage, guns ARE the great equalizer. I'm a law-abiding citizen with a carry permit, and my high-capacity pistol has killed fewer people than Ted Kennedy's car. What's wrong with that?
  • Ah, yes; the 'I'll take you out of context and then respond with pithy one-liners' semi-troll. I'm feeling charitable today, so I'll respond.

    Whenever you introduce more complexity to a system, there's a risk/benefit tradeoff. Your comparison to ABS brakes is not a particularly apt one, but I'll work with it: basically, most people feel that the modern ABS system produces enough benefit to outweigh the complexity (and thus risk of failure) that it introduces. The point is that I don't think that the additional complexity of these safety systems produces enough benefit to be worth it the increased risk of failure, particularly when the failure mode of a non-firing gun is so severe. (Gun doesn't go off, user may well end up dead.)

    Your second response is silly as well. To begin with, guns don't unload themselves over time. A loaded gun will still be loaded tomorrow, provided someone hasn't unloaded it. Thus, it's far easier to accidentally have a gun where the batteries aren't charged, than one that's not loaded. Second, anyone who even has a basic idea of how a firearm works knows that in order for it to fling little lead things out the front, it has to have a supply of little lead things. It's less obvious that it also has to have a battery. Because the cartriges are fundamentally required for operation of the gun, they're difficult to forget. Any safety system would by design be nearly transparent, and thus easy to forget about except when it doesn't work.

    Regarding handcuffing suspects: the police have carefully thought-out procedures for how to handcuff people in order to reduce the chance of the suspect being able to attack them. Generally, it's done by two people: if the person is really dangerous, you wouldn't even try to get close to them (or let them get close to you) until another person arrived to cover them. And then the weapon goes into a holster, which is designed to be difficult for another person to remove the gun from. (Actually, such holsters are an example of complexity that's probably worth it in terms of a tradeoff, because it doesn't introduce too much.)

    Oh look, you made fun of how I openly admitted that I wasn't going to try to prop my argument up with statistics. Wooo. I see you don't have any in return to discuss exactly how many officers are shot with their own weapons in the absence of mitigating factors, in order to underline exactly how severe this problem is? Your side of the argument is predicated on the assumption that there is a substantial risk to officers of being shot with their own guns, and that this risk warrants introducing a needlessly complex, expensive, and failure-prone safety system. I'm saying I don't think the risk is that great. Burden of proof is on you if you still think so, particularly if you want to make fun of my lack of statistics. Who's not wearing any clothes?

    And as for your last point, you decided to deprecate another safety system which probably could have helped your argument, since it's an example of a worthwhile complexity/safety tradeoff. As I mentioned earlier, most police forces (at least those that I've interacted with the members of, admittedly all in the US) have discovered that it's not a great idea to get close to a dangerous suspect with a drawn weapon, and have instituted procedures that minimize the need for this. You don't cuff someone without backup (and when you do, if you're the person doing the cuffing, you holster the weapon as you approach), etc. There are probably exceptional circumstances where these procedures can't be followed, but without evidence of how commonplace they are, it's hardly a convincing justification for such safety systems.

    I never said at any point that there aren't places for RFID-enabled guns; I can think of a few, they're just few- and far-between. Places where guns currently can't be taken (secure facilities, prisons) might be included, but in general, I think people substantially overestimate the need or demand for such systems in average civilian or police use.
  • Give me Simple (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Java Ape ( 528857 ) <> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @06:18PM (#15616608) Homepage
    Without going to too many details, I have a concealed carry permit, and exercise the right to both keep and bear arms on a regular basis. I also shoot for sport, and am reasonably good with a firearm. I once bought a high-end semi-auto pistol which has received man excellent reviews. The workmanship was of very high quality, but it had multiple safety devices, including one on the back of the handle and one on the trigger. Perhaps my hand is malformed, but about one shot in ten failed to discharge because my grip wasn't sufficiently firm on the back of the gun, or my finger was "too far" up the trigger. Worse, this gun was single action only, and a failed discharge dropped the hammer (which hit a falling-block safety rather than the firing pin). The upshot was that a failed shot required me to work the slide, wasting a round, to get back into firing position. I sold the gun in less than a week. What good is a gun that won't work when you need it?

    I don't buy cheap guns, beater guns, or unsafe weapons. I can think of few things that make a gun more unsafe that FAILING to perform it's intended task in a life or death situation. I'll stick with my old, unsafe, and trustworthy pistols, thanks all the same.

  • by ChronosWS ( 706209 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @06:23PM (#15616643)
    Those that behave this way are shortsighted in the way most voters are. They have their pet issue, and they think abotu that to the exclusion of all others. Unfortunately, neither of the major parties will protect all of the amendments, in spite of the fact it is their oath-bound duty to do so once elected. We continue to elect liars and hypocrites, so it is no suprise this is what happens. Vote for a party of principle, and keep your firearms clean and loaded.
  • by jonwil ( 467024 ) on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @08:14PM (#15617282)
    Adding any kind of smarts, computers or eletronics to the firing path of a gun (including any kind of "authorized user" checking) is bad.
    The parts of a gun required to fire are all mechanical and most guns are (or at least should be) built so that the number of parts which can fail and prevent the gun from firing is as few as possible.

    Adding things like "encrypted bullets" or judge-dredd like DNA checks for authorized users just makes it less likely that the gun is going to fire when it needs to.
  • Bullet Control!!! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by s-orbital ( 598727 ) < minus poet> on Tuesday June 27, 2006 @08:59PM (#15617484) Homepage Journal
    We don't need gun control...
    We need BULLET CONTROL!!!
                -- Chris Rock

The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.