Ban the 50 cal.?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by 1952Sniper, Mar 7, 2003.

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  1. 1952Sniper

    1952Sniper New Member

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    pickenup
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    (2/2/03 1:14:55 am)
    Reply Ban the 50 cal.?
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    January 31, 2003
    Citing Danger to Planes, Group Seeks Ban on a Sniper Rifle
    By MATTHEW L. WALD

    ASHINGTON, Jan. 30 — A gun-control group has begun a new campaign against large sniper rifles, asserting that the rifles together with armor-piercing ammunition that bursts into flames on impact pose a serious threat to airliners at airports.

    The guns, .50-caliber rifles, sell for thousands of dollars and are primarily purchased by military and law enforcement personnel, but hundreds are bought by civilians every year. Some manufacturers' marketing material emphasizes that the rifles can destroy aircraft and armored personnel carriers.

    Tom Diaz, a senior policy analyst at the Violence Policy Center, the gun-control group that has long campaigned for bans on the .50-caliber rifles, said: "This is not just a gun control issue. It's a national security issue."

    The center produced a 32-page report that it is distributing this week on the potential threat to aircraft of the rifle, which has a range of more than a mile.

    The Transportation Security Administration, however, does not see the rifles as a major threat. Robert Johnson, the agency's chief spokesman, said: "We are aware of it. We have considered it as part of a number of potential threats. We just don't feel it is high on the list of potential dangers."

    Manufacturers and many gun enthusiasts say the rifles' critics are overzealous gun opponents who falsely raise fears about terrorism.

    Ronnie G. Barrett, a manufacturer, said the idea of shooting down a moving plane with the rifle was "big time ridiculous" because a gunman would have to aim above the plane, to take account of gravity's effect on the bullet as it traveled, and then the plane would not be visible in the scope.

    Other rifles could also be used against planes on the ground, Mr. Barrett said.

    But a report to the Air Force in 1995 by the RAND Corporation identified .50-caliber rifles as a special hazard to "high value" planes at military airfields. Alan J. Vick, one of the two authors of the study, said that the possibility of using .50-caliber rifles against parked aircraft was worrisome.

    "These weapons are heavy, and as a sniper weapon, using a bipod, laying down, shooting at some terrestrial target, they can be very accurate," Mr. Vick said. "I can understand why people would be worried about them as a terrorism weapon."

    He and other experts, while sometimes skeptical that the gun could be used successfully against a plane in the air, said it could damage and possibly ignite a plane on the ground.

    John Plaster, a retired Special Forces officer who has tutored police snipers, pointed out that such rifles were awkward to maneuver, weighing about 35 pounds.

    "It's very unrealistic," Mr. Plaster said. "I have never heard of a commercial plane anywhere in the world that was seriously damaged while in flight by a .50-caliber rifle, ever. It's not by any means a choice weapon."

    Sales literature from Barrett Firearms Manufacturing, says of one model, "The compressor section of jet engines or the transmissions of helicopters are likely targets for the weapon, making it capable of destroying multimillion dollar aircraft with a single hit delivered to a vital area."

    A competitor, E.D.M. Arms, advertises on the Web that its Windrunner .50-caliber can be used to "attack various materiel targets such as parked aircraft, radar sites, ammunition, petroleum and various thinned-skinned materiel targets."

    Investigators for the General Accounting Office called several arms dealers to inquire about ordering the guns and armor-piercing rounds. According to a transcript of a call to a dealer in Oregon, an agent asked, "If I theoretically wanted to use these rounds to take down an aircraft, say either a helicopter or something like that, I should be able to take a helicopter down, shouldn't I?"

    The dealer answered, "Yeah, it'll go through any light stuff like that."

    Caliber refers to the diameter of the barrel, and .50 caliber is half an inch. At the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Curt Bartlett, chief of the Firearms Technical Branch, said of the .50 caliber, "anything bigger than that would be getting into the range of cannons."

    Henry A. Waxman, Democrat of California, said he would soon introduce legislation to regulate the weapons. Mr. Waxman said he had observed a demonstration at which marines used the rifles to shoot through a three-and-a-half-inch manhole cover, a 600-pound safe and "everything imaginable."


    deadeye006
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    (2/2/03 9:09:06 am)
    Reply
    Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Now who in their right mind would want to lug around a fifty-cal just so they could shoot once at something they can't hit? Has a .50 ever been used in any crime in the history of the U.S.?


    1952Sniper
    V.I.P. Member
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    (2/2/03 11:08:59 am)
    Reply | Edit Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    This same issue came up with respect to fuel storage tanks. The theory was that a terrorist sniper could use a .50BMG to shoot a large above-ground storage tank (like the 100,000 barrel gasoline tanks in and around refineries) to start a large explosion and fire.

    Possible? Yes. Likely? No.

    The truth is, there are all kinds of ways to cause destruction and mayhem. If these jackasses think that banning .50 caliber rifles will solve the world's problems, they need a good smack upside the head with a 2x4.

    It doesn't surprise me in the least that this BS stems from California. How much longer are we going to tolerate the Californians?
    Macht kaputt, was euch kaputt macht!


    Zigzag2
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 5405
    (2/2/03 11:20:11 am)
    Reply
    Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Well put 1952Sniper

    Quote:
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    "Tell the gossipers and liars I will see them in the fire" - Johnny Cash, Let the train whistle blow
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    [email protected]


    AGunguy
    *TFF Staff*
    Posts: 3266
    (2/2/03 11:41:33 am)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Attention all agencies, be on the look out for persons carrying 50 caliber muskets around airports. Shoot first and ask questions later...we've got to protect them airplanes so that the fanatic Arabs that Canada let into our country can fly on them.

    Just being a little sarcastic here...nothing serious.

    GG


    marshall5
    Member
    Posts: 4
    (2/3/03 11:11:54 pm)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    I think that the idea of banning the .50 caliber is outrageous, and obviously just another stupid excuse for someone to ban something that is a "theoretical" threat. It's crazy how some people feed off of taking our rights away. And lets face it, taking arms out of the hands of civilians doesn't mean your stopping a terrorist from getting one, after all, he's a terrorist, remember? Has anyone ever heard of the words common sense? I wish more people could use it.


    anchored
    V.I.P. Member
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    (2/4/03 10:55:44 am)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Quote:
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    Sales literature from Barrett Firearms Manufacturing, says of one model, "The compressor section of jet engines or the transmissions of helicopters are likely targets for the weapon, making it capable of destroying multimillion dollar aircraft with a single hit delivered to a vital area."

    A competitor, E.D.M. Arms, advertises on the Web that its Windrunner .50-caliber can be used to "attack various materiel targets such as parked aircraft, radar sites, ammunition, petroleum and various thinned-skinned materiel targets."

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    My question, who in the right mind at these manufacturers thought such advertising copy was a good idea and wouldn't hurt the cause by scaring the sheeple? Ruger wouldn't advertise their mini-14's as ideal for drive-by shootings!

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    Those who would give up essential liberty for safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. -Ben Franklin
    The unarmed man is not merely defenseless - he is also contemptible.-Machiavelli


    coloradofiveo
    Member
    Posts: 8
    (2/4/03 4:48:54 pm)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Be careful 1952Sniper, don't let California know it is possible to hurt people with a 2x4. That will be next on the ban list.


    1952Sniper
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 1013
    (2/4/03 5:09:09 pm)
    Reply | Edit Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    I think we should start a grassroots organization to ban Californians. After all, they don't seem to have any qualms about banning anything that causes them problems. So let's ban the #1 thing that causes us problems!

    Down with California!

    Down with California!

    (come on people, chant with me)

    Down with California!

    Oh, and P.S., any of you "normal" Californians should go ahead and get out first, before this movement sweeps across the nation.

    Down with California!
    Macht kaputt, was euch kaputt macht!


    kdub01
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 1974
    (2/4/03 5:27:55 pm)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    I'll vote fer that, Sniper - 'specially since I share a backyard fence wif 'um!

    If'n we wait long enough, er give it a little nudge, the San Andreas Fault is s'posed to let the PRK slide by Alaska one of these days. Kain't be too soon fer me!! (Allus wanted some ocean front property!)
    "Keep Off The Ridgeline"


    coloradofiveo
    Member
    Posts: 9
    (2/4/03 11:03:04 pm)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    Down with California!


    tuckerd1
    *TFF Staff*
    Posts: 1457
    (2/5/03 8:44:53 am)
    Reply Re: Ban the 50 cal.?
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    When we build "The Great Wall of Mexico", we need to extend it north and then west to the Pacific. Isolate 'em and let then rot!
     
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