The Instigator
USN276
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
whiteflame
Con (against)
Winning
22 Points

"assault weapons should NOT be prohibited from law abiding citizens

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
whiteflame
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/15/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,360 times Debate No: 52579
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (88)
Votes (5)

 

USN276

Pro

I saw you debated someone on "assault weapons" and the opponent missed key points that could have been made to dismiss the argument that an "assault weapons" ban would have a positive effect. I couldn't help myself to not actually challenge you to a debate.

I would like to debate the topic of 'assault weapons" (semi automatic firearms WITH "dangerous assault weapon features)

I will give you the first argument to make.
whiteflame

Con

To start, let's just clarify the case proper. Pro has stated what the definition of an assault weapon is in this case, and I will hold to that. However, we have no definition of what prohibition looks like. Though I could use this to simply say that there would be increased restrictions on assault weapons (as in higher level gun permits requiring more training and deeper background checks), but I think I'd rather make this as straightforward as possible.

As such, this will be a straight up ban. This could be accomplished by a complete ban on semi-automatic rifles, though that wouldn't be specific to the instance here. Mine will follow the lines of Senator Diane Feinstein's proposal.[1]

That's not to say that I believe even the former assault weapons ban, was ineffective, simply less so than it could have been. The evidence available pretty strongly suggests that it played a significant role in reducing the number of gun deaths. The number of firearm homicides, which correlate strongly with overall homicides, drops appreciably from 17,527 to 11,624 over the course of the 10 years it was in effect. That's a 39% decrease in firearm homicides, and a 39% decrease in overall homicides. This data comes from the Bureau of Justice Statistics.[2]

They're not alone. Pew Charitable Trusts presented similar data, in fact including that firearms crimes were decreasing during this same period. This same group also did a poll of the general public to see their perception of its effects, and found that the public was generally pessimistic about it as a result of not knowing what was in these gun laws.[2]

This policy would improve upon the original, though there are many aspects it keeps that are effective. I won't address the bans on increased magazine capacity directly (though that can be a subject of debate if Pro wishes to have it), but I will still address capacity from the standpoint of assault rifles specifically. The list of features that I'll be addressing are as follows:

The ability to accept a detachable (interchangeable) magazine
A folding or telescoping stock
A pistol grip of conspicuous size
A grenade launcher[3]

I will, however, add one thing onto the proposal for my own, and that is anything that allows a faster rate of fire above that which semi-automatic rifles are currently able to achieve. This would include bump fire, which can result from the use of different triggers (as with the Hellfire trigger)[4][5] and slide fire stocks,[6] both of which are widely affordable and adaptable to semi-automatic rifles.

So why do we care about these additions?

The detachable magazine is a problem mainly for quick reload times. Even if a magazine capacity reduction was in effect, this would vastly increase the capacity by making the change-over incredibly simple. This is necessary to start on that path. I'll spend some more time talking about why capacity matters at the end of this round.

The folding or telescoping stock makes a weapon easier to carry and conceal, and is a frequent factor in mass shooting situations.[7]

The pistol grip has been used before with the AR-15, and it allows the shooter to both "pull the trigger more quickly and to better control the recoil, allowing him to fire more rapidly with more accuracy. It also enables shooting from the hip and sprying fire from the side " something that would be deadly when firing into a crowd but useless in a self-defense situation."[7]

The grenade launcher isn't quite so obvious, since explosive grenades are heavily regulated. However, other kinds of projectiles, including smoke grenades, aren't so hard to come by, and other explosives can be more easily made.[7]

To provide some idea of the actual harm beyond the statistics, we can simply look back at previous instances in which assault rifles were used.

This Mother Jones article [8] shows that, of 143 mass shootings over the past 30 years, 28 involved the usage of rifles, 20 were assault weapons, and 42 of them used high capacity magazines.[8] If Con is looking for specific instances, look no further. Sandy Hook included the usage of a Bushmaster semi-automatic rifle, .223 caliber. Aurora included a Smith & Wesson M&P15 AR 15 style rifle, .223 caliber. A shooting in Clackamas Town Center, Oregon was committed by an AR 15 style rifle, .223 caliber. An IHOP shooting in Carson City utilized an AK47 variant semi-automatic rifle, 7.62x39 caliber. There are several others on this list.[9]

I've got more.

"In 2002, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo terrorized the Washington region for three weeks by firing bullets at innocent people in parking lots and at gas stations, ultimately killing 10 people and wounding three others. They used a Bushmaster XM-15 E2S rifle, one many variants of America's most popular assault weapon, the AR-15.

In 2006, Kyle Aaron Huff used a Bushmaster when he opened fire at a post-rave party in Seattle, killing six before committing suicide. In 2007, Tyler Peterson used an AR-15 to kill six people at a homecoming party in Crandon, Wis. In 2012, a gunman opened fire at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., killing 12 people and injuring 58 others. Police say James Holmes used a Smith & Wesson version of the AR-15 that was equipped with a 100-round drum magazine. And in December, Adam Lanza used a Bushmaster XM-15 in his massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, killing 20 children and six adults."[7]

Now, a brief point on why we should care about capacity. I think this is relatively straightforward, but the basic idea is that when a shooter has the ability to fire more bullets in succession, the capacity to intervene is dramatically reduced. Survivor accounts prove this to be so. In the 2011 Tucson shooting, "three bystanders, one of whom was wounded, managed to subdue the shooter as he attempted to reload his second 30-plus round magazine."[3] In other words, if he had been capable of firing fewer shots without reloading, "witnesses could have deterred him sooner and fatalities and injuries could have been fewer."

With that, I leave it to Pro to make his case and rebut mine.

1. http://www.feinstein.senate.gov...
2. http://www.theatlanticcities.com...
3. http://www.policymic.com...
4. http://www.nbcbayarea.com...
5. http://www.csmonitor.com...
6. http://www.motherjones.com...
7. http://articles.baltimoresun.com...
8. www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/02/assault-weapons-high-capacity-magazines-mass-shootings-feinstein
9. http://www.cga.ct.gov...
Debate Round No. 1
USN276

Pro

As con states in the beginning, he doesn't necessarily believe there should be an all out ban on these types of weapons. He says there should just be tougher background checks and training. My goal here is to prove to con that this isn't necessary. (as a matter of fact, I believe all guns should involve tougher background checks) Most links will be at the bottom. Just a side note.

"The evidence available pretty strongly suggests that it played a significant role in reducing the number of gun deaths."

This statement is very incorrect. Homicide rates were did not result in a decline because of the 1994 AWB. As a matter of fact, in 2004 when the ban was lifted, no significant changes in homicides occurred. As of now, homicides involving rifles is at it's lowest in MANY years.

Your figures don't make sense. "assault weapons" have always made up less than 5% of gun homicides. If there was a 39% decrease in homicides, how can you give credit to the "assault weapons" ban?

Now, still if that isn't enough evidence to support my argument that the ban had no effect on homicide rates, here is a quote from a huge proponent to the 1994 AWB.

Koper, 2004: Although the ban has been successful in reducing crimes with AWs [Assault Weapons], any benefits from this reduction are likely to have been outweighed by steady or rising use of non-banned semiautomatics with LCMs [large-capacity magazines], which are used in crime much more frequently than AWs. Therefore, we cannot clearly credit the ban with any of the nation"s recent drop in gun violence. And, indeed, there has been no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness of gun violence, based on indicators like the percentage of gun crimes resulting in death or the share of gunfire incidents resulting in injury, as we might have expected had the ban reduced crimes with both AWs and LCMs.

Now, I also wanted to show you the number of police officers killed in the line of duty. The data shows from 1791to 2013. According to the data, with the "assault weapons" ban no longer in effect, the number of police officers killed is at its lowest. Not even the number of police officers killed in the line of duty had any visible effects from the AWB.

http://www.nleomf.org...

I'm going to keep the magazine debate separate. As a matter of fact, I can't argue that higher capacity magazines don't make a different in mass shootings, however, that doesn't mean I support a ban.

Now you say bump fire stocks should be illegal. I don't own a bump fire stock, but I don't see them as necessary to being banned. No one has ever used one in a mass shooting and anti gunners have even said full auto weapons make it harder to kill more people.

Now with the detachable magazine, you need to understand how the law works. An "assault weapon" is a rifle with a detachable magazine that HAS one of the "assault weapon" features (which you know) So, I don't understand if you are against magazine fed semi autos, which are some of the most popular rifles in America, or you want to ban "assault weapons" (which is more specific) which are also the most popular rifles in America.

"The folding or telescoping stock makes a weapon easier to carry and conceal, and is a frequent factor in mass shooting situations" The length of an AR 15 is 33 inches. With a folded stock, it is around 28 inches. I would be darned if those 5 inches should make a simple characteristic of a firearm banned. What about in a home defense scenario where someone breaks into your home, and you need to clear each room carefully. Don't you think the adjustable but-stock would be beneficial in tight spaces? If you ask me, leaving the telescoping stock will only benefit citizens because you are helping them to defend themselves. Gun owners are typically trained with firearms (and they should be) Street gangs can't shoot properly and efficiently and the fact that they shoot their handguns side ways tells me they wouldn't get a'lot of of an adjustable but-stock

Now, I shoot firearms. I have seen VERY minimal difference between a pistol grip and a non pistol grip. Now, most mass shootings are in close quarters. Maintaining a hight rate of fire from a distance at most of what, 20 to 30 yards isn't very difficult. And no, a pistol grip does not increase the fire rate. Pistol grips only control the fire rate VERY slightly.

"It also enables shooting from the hip and sprying fire from the side" Hip firing is not a good way to shoot. I can't even hip at a target WITH a pistol grip from even 10 yards. The hip firing you see in video games isn't a good model. No shooters shoot hip fire. And also, bump firing is VERY inaccurate. I will also show you a link on how difficult it is to bump fire the convectional way.

https://www.youtube.com...

https://www.youtube.com...

"The grenade launcher isn't quite so obvious, since explosive grenades are heavily regulated. However, other kinds of projectiles, including smoke grenades, aren't so hard to come by, and other explosives can be more easily made" But also, grenade launchers are HEAVILY regulated in the U.S. VERY few people have them, so even if you can get 20mm smoke grenades, doesn't mean you will have a device to shoot it.

Now, if "assault weapons" were actually more dangerous, than why is it that less 2% (which is a reasonable estimate considering that 3.7% of homicides involve rifles IN GENERAL, of gun homicides involve "assault weapons, the 2 worst mass shootings in the entire WORLD were not committed by them (which dismisses the argument that they have the ability to kill more people) and in the past TEN YEARS, less than 70 people have been killed by "assault weapons" in mass shootings? It just makes no sense. Not to mention, 90% of law enforcement officers say they do NOT support a ban on them and an "assault weapons" ban would have NO POSITIVE EFFECT.

AR 15s are sporting/home defense rifles. They are NOT assault rifles. (FYI, AR stands for Armalite rifle) Nothing special about them. Tell me something. Why should "assault weapons" be banned if less than 300 people are killed a year by them (75% being criminals since most murder victims are criminals) but alcohol shouldn't be banned when 10,000 people are killed a year by drunk drivers?

Now, Anders Brevik holds the world record for the worst mass shooting in the world. Anders Brevik did NOT use a rifle classified as an "assault weapon" He killed 71 people. With this fact, how can you prove "assault weapons" are more efficient at killing people?

As I said before, were just going to stick with "assault weapons" for this debate. Magazines are going to be separate.

http://www.nleomf.org...
http://en.wikipedia.org... <--- look at the table on the right which shows the shootings from each continent
http://en.wikipedia.org...(workplace_killings)
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://www.fbi.gov...
http://www.volokh.com...
http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...
http://www.gunpolicy.org...
http://www.policeone.com...
http://responsibility.org...

Now the way i achieved the number of mass shooting victims involving "assault weapons" I took each mass shooting from 2003 to 2013 involving an 'assault weapon" and then added up the total victims in each shooting involving an "assault weapon." (Mass shooting is 3 or more victims killed)
whiteflame

Con

Thanks to my opponent, and I'll launch straight in.



Pro starts by challenging my point that the 1994 AWB effectively reduced homicide rates. Multiple responses.





  1. He doesn't actually challenge the evidence. If you check my [2] from the previous round, you'll see two rather stark images depicting major reductions in firearm and overall homicide rates that just happen to occur during this particular time period. There are no other decreases like that on either chart. The figures I gave all stem from those same charts. If Pro would like to contest the charts directly, he'll need to do so at some point, but as of now, the 39% figure still stands as reality.




  2. Pro provides no alternate explanation for this drop in homicides. I would argue that any other explanation is going to be a lot harder to prove, but it's something Pro would have to do. The data speaks for itself, I'm only providing analysis for why it exists, and so far it stands alone.




  3. He says that “'assault weapons' have always made up less than 5% of gun homicides.” I'd like to know which source he got that from, but it really doesn't matter. Even if you don't buy the data, even if 5% is all that's achieved, it's still a substantial reduction in deaths.




  4. Pro is cherry-picking from the Koper study. He left out the next paragraph:





“However, the grandfathering provision of the AW-LCM ban guaranteed that the effects of this law would occur only gradually over time. Those effects are still unfolding and may not be fully felt for several years into the future, particularly if foreign, pre-ban LCMs continue to be imported into the U.S. in large numbers. It is thus premature to make definitive assessments of the ban’s impact on gun violence.”



The word “premature” is important here for two reasons. One, the data was incomplete at the time. My data comes from more recent sources functioning based on a wider set of data. Pro doesn't respond to either the Bureau of Justice Statistics or Pew. Two, his own citation is hurting his point of long-term effect. So long as the effects of the ban were unfolding beyond its 2004 end, its entirely feasible that the effect on gun violence outlasted the bill itself.



On stocks. Pro drops the example I cited of Gian Luigi Ferri, who used the Hellfire trigger in his mass shooting, where he killed 8 people and wounded 6. But we don't need examples to know that something is dangerous. We realistically understand that allowing people to have legal access to and full use of a tank and its ammunition is harmful, and we don't need instances of actual abuse of a tank to recognize that the potential harm outstrips any desire. The reality is that a faster rate of fire means a higher likelihood of more deaths. Pro doesn't touch slide fire stocks.



On detachable magazines. I am well aware of how the law works, and I am stating that the detachable magazine, which my first link showed is a trait of assault weapons and not all semi-automatic rifles, is more problematic than an internal box or fixed magazine. This speeds up the process of reloading. I'd like to see some response to the magazine capacity issue, since this is one way to increase the capacity beyond any size constraint.



On folding or telescoping stock. This is really the only place where Pro generates any offense at all, and he really wants to have this both ways. He wants to say that 5 inches isn't much. On the other hand, in a home defense scenario, it makes it so much easier to clear each room carefully that it's practically necessary. I think Pro is making my own point for me. Whether we're talking about concealment or simply navigating tighter spaces, the folding stock is making it easier for the shooter. And since the shooter is going to be the first one with their hand on the weapon and likely with an element of surprise, the last thing we should be doing is making it easier for him/her to reach the target.



On the pistol grip. I did provide a link to this effect, and no, the point was not that all pistol grips are going to increase harms. We're talking about the substantial ones, the larger ones, which are capable of reducing the recoil and allowing faster trigger pulls. Pro asserts that there's not much of a difference, but that depends entirely on the experience of the person doing the shooting. Even if the difference is small, that can still mean several more bullets fired with more accuracy.



As for shooting from the hip, Pro just says this is really inaccurate. That doesn't matter. It's not meant to be accurate, it's meant to fire into crowds with little to no accuracy, hitting more targets at a rapid pace.



Grenade launchers are regulated, but they still appear on rifles. Pro even admits that some people do have these, he just tries to say that the risk is so minimal that we shouldn't care. I would say that any reasonable potential for saving lives justifies this, and as Pro seems to agree with their regulation, I think we can both agree that this presents a possible concern that cannot be seen on other currently legal weapons.



Pro provides a number of statistics that he doesn't directly cite (and I'd appreciate if he pointed out which of his links actually provides this statistics), but which are, once again, solely mitigating. The best he can prove from this is that a ban is not 100% effective, and that other weapons may take their place. But what he never shows, throughout his entire argument, is that these other weapons are as deadly or more so than assault rifles. I'll grant that most criminals are not going to be dissuaded by a lack of assault rifles (though the Pew research I cited earlier did show a correlation between reduced gun crime and the 1994 AWB), but if their capacity to do harm is sufficiently reduced, then there's reason for the ban. The “NO POSITIVE EFFECT” assertion is nothing more than that – an assertion, one his own arguments confound.



In all of his arguments, Pro ignores my extensive list of shooters who utilized assault rifles. 20 of the last 143 mass shootings have involved the usage of assault weapons. Pro doesn't contest this. Hedoesn't contest any of the individual examples, except to say that an AR-14 is not an assault rifle. Even if you buy this, that only removes one example, namely the Tyler Peterson case. James Holmes modified his with a 100-round drum magazine, so his can be classified as an assault rifle. Pro is effectively conceding the remainder of my examples.



Pro makes a non-sequitor about drunk driving. Yes, it's a problem. Tell me, does the fact that so many people die as a result of drunk driving suddenly make the purported <300 who die as a result of assault rifles unimportant? Should we stop caring about those lives because bigger problems exist? This appears to be Pro's assertion.



Lastly, Anders Brevik. The view here is that examples like this prove that you don't need an assault weapon to do the same level of damage. In fact, he makes the point that the top 2 mass killings were both perpetrated without this. Of course, he then goes on to ignore all the details, like the fact that he did this particular shooting at a site with no armed opposition, the Norwegian Labour Party youth camp. In this particular case, yes, he killed a lot of people. But since all of the instances we've discussed have involved the ability to intervene (which Pro left untouched, despite the fact that it applies through the detachable magazines argument), the capacity to escape (this was on an island), and the ability to shoot people within a very short period of time (he had quite a while to accomplish this).[1] I'm not sure what Pro's #2 is because he doesn't state it, but I imagine it was a situation along similar lines. He can't just declare that these guns are equally effective to others based on individual instances with a lot of separate factors to take into account.



Back to Pro.



1. http://www.bbc.co.uk...

Debate Round No. 2
USN276

Pro

Ok, I will continue on.

If any credit could possibly be given to the reduction of homicides from the 1994 AWB, why is it that homicides did not sky rocket after 2004 when the ban was dropped? I don't doubt the data. If you were inferring that's what I was saying, it's incorrect. What i was saying is that homicides involving rifles have ALWAYS made up a VERY small portion of gun homicides. So how can credit be given to the ban when 39% of homicides declined and rifles make up such a small portion of gun homicides?

"Pro provides no alternate explanation for this drop in homicides"

Of course their is no explanation for homicides being dropped. There isn't any explanation as to why in the 1980s, international homicide rates have been on a decline. Where is the evidence to support the ban had to do with the drop in homicide rates? You said there was a 39% drop. Why is it that in the Uk, the homicide rate went up 22% from 2001 to 2002? It's simply a red herring. Also, con has not mentioned a word about the fact that the gun homicide rate is lower than the gun homicide rate during the AWB.

http://www.citizensreportuk.org...

Well, I can't prove it's been 5%. The estimate is made because on the FBI stats for homicides by weapons, it only shows from 2007 to 2011. Homicides involving rifles iN GENERAL throughout those years have made up less than 5% of gun homicides.
"even if 5% is all that's achieved, it's still a substantial reduction in deaths." Con has yet to prove that some homicides involving "assault weapons" could not have been achieved by a different kind of weapon. (or a non "assault weapon") This is the forefront of the debate.

There is no reason for me to be afraid to put that in. This is your claim before stating the percentages; "That's not to say that I believe even the former assault weapons ban, was ineffective, simply less so than it could have been. The evidence available pretty strongly suggests that it played a significant role in reducing the number of gun deaths. " So my question is, do you have solid evidence to support that the ban had an effect. it isn't a matter of "was the ban active for a long enough period" (and personally, 10 years is a long enough time) You were insisting the ban was a direct result of the decline in homicides. So do you have proof the ban was the result of the 39% decline in homicides over 10 years? Because before, I showed you dat for the UK with homicide rates jumping 22% in JUST ONE year. There isn't an explanation for it. So my point being, homicide rates have the tendencies to drastically go up and down for no reason. Another example is Australia. Homicide rates are actually going back up again.

"We realistically understand that allowing people to have legal access to and full use of a tank and its ammunition is harmful, and we don't need instances of actual abuse of a tank to recognize that the potential harm outstrips any desire." We also see that abuse of alcoholic beverages outstrips our desire for it. 10,000 innocent people killed a year due to drunk driving. So, by your logic, alcohol should be prohibited. Chances are you don't support a ban on alcohol because #1. 2/3 Americans claim to drink and most Americans don't support a ban on alcohol. Now still, you haven't made argument proving a ban on adjustable but-stocks would be beneficial to the public. (but yeah, a sliding but-stock makes all the difference in a mass shooting. As long as the shooter has no slide but-stock, he won't be able to kill more people) lol

On the hellfire trigger, I have no reason to own one, and the hellfire trigger is irrelevant to the topic of "assault weapons" Please remember that. "The reality is that a faster rate of fire means a higher likelihood of more deaths. Pro doesn't touch slide fire stocks." faster rate of fire means more muzzle climb. More muzzle climb means it will be harder to efficiently engage a target.

Problem is that a detachable magazine doesn't make a gun an 'assault weapon" A detachable magazine on a semi automatic firearm WITH an "assault weapon" feature makes an 'assault weapon" I'm sorry, but magazine sizes are are going to be out of this debate.

"Pro generates any offense at all, and he really wants to have this both ways. He wants to say that 5 inches isn't much." agh, here's the problem. You said "The folding or telescoping stock makes a weapon easier to carry and conceal" I am mocking the fact that you believe reducing a 33 inch rifle to 28 inches will truly make it easier to conceal a weapon. 33 inches is already short enough. I am simply saying that an adjustable but-stock will give a home owner the advantage in a home invasion because room to room clearing in a HOUSE is as close quarters as it will get. So now contradiction was made on my part. You simply misinterpreted was I was saying.

Now, your argument is that we need to make it as hard as possible for gun owners to protect themselves against criminals as the expensive of your belief that getting rid of adjustable but-stocks will make a reduction in gun homicides and mass shooting deaths. So, would it be necessary to make car seats for drivers less comfortable that way they have less distractions? Should we remove cup holders from cars that way drivers don't get distracted from drinking to pick up their beverage from their cup holders? it's the same logic. To be frank, it actually sounds foolish that you want to fight gun deaths by getting rid of adjustable but-stocks and pistol grips, meanwhile the worst mass shooting in the entire world was committed by a rifle with neither of those features. So, i need to understand. Do you support making it harder for gun owners to defend themselves against home invasions? Now, often, people will say "then the criminals will bring "assault weapons" to houses and they will have adjustable but-stocks like you" Rifles make up a VERY small portion of gun crimes. The weapon of choice for crimes are handguns.

"On the pistol grip. I did provide a link to this effect, and no, the point was not that all pistol grips are going to increase harms. We're talking about the substantial ones, the larger ones, which are capable of reducing the recoil and allowing faster trigger pulls." lol, you mean the link from baltimoresun? Is baltimoresun tactical professionals and have strong experience with firearms? "Pro asserts that there's not much of a difference, but that depends entirely on the experience of the person doing the shooting." I've been shooting firearms for years now. Sounds to me like your saying that if you have a'lot of experience with firearms, you will only figure out how to control the fire rate and accuracy of a rifle with a pistol grip. That is literally what you are saying. That does't make any sense. "Even if the difference is small, that can still mean several more bullets fired with more accuracy." You don't even have proof that "several more bullets" can be fired. A pistol grip is just going to subtract nano seconds. if you don't shoot ten rounds with a pistol grip, you may just shoot 20 nano seconds off rather than if you used a pistol grip. I mean how many more times can I say it? Anders Brevik, who holds the record for the worst mass shooting in the WORLD did NOT use a pistol grip.

"As for shooting from the hip, Pro just says this is really inaccurate. That doesn't matter. It's not meant to be accurate, it's meant to fire into crowds with little to no accuracy, hitting more targets at a rapid pace" but why wouldn't you aim the sights down if it allows you to shoot targets where you want to hit them at the same speed? If I am hip firing, I could be shooting low, or I could be shooting. I could just be shooting at peoples legs. Why hip fire if I can lift up my gun and shoot accurately and more effectively.

I am out of space so my continuation will be in the comment section.
whiteflame

Con

The majority of this debate seems to be on the subject of proof of effect. Pro is essentially shouldering me with the burden here, stating that it's my duty within this debate to show exactly how it was causative. I've provided reasons why at least part of that reduction is the result of the AWB, and I'll get to those later, but I really don't understand what else Con wants from me here. I've shown that there is a very distinct correlation. It's not a correlation that stretches a year or two, it's a pretty stark change in the homicide rate that lasted the entire period the assault weapons ban was in effect and thereafter. Pro's own evidence has provided justification for its continued effectiveness following its end, since many of the effects are felt out to the long term. It shows that the long term effects of the ban could account for the lower gun homicide rate today. Pro's response to this is to say that homicides should have skyrocketed the day the ban was up, but bans tend to have effects that go well beyond their duration, since they change seller and buyer habits.

He admits that there is no alternate explanation that he can provide for the data. The argument he's making here seems to be that since there's no absolutely stark proof, voters should disbelieve my arguments. I don't think this is at all reasonable. Looking back at those charts, the effect follows directly along the lines of the start of the 1994 AWB. If Pro would like to attribute that decline to something else, he is welcome to do so. So long as he does not, voters should prefer the argument that it's not just coincidental.

He tries to showcase this is with a red herring. He mentions that the UK homicide rates jumped within 1 year. First off, it's a single year, and therefore it's difficult to create a trend for it. We can determine trends if they're over a long enough time period. Second, the absence of an explanation in this case doesn't mean that there's no explanation in ours. It's irrelevant to this debate.

"Con has yet to prove that some homicides involving "assault weapons" could not have been achieved by a different kind of weapon."

This is fundamentally the problem in Pro's attacks on my case. No, it is not my duty in this debate to say that a person who wants to go out and kill a bunch of people with a gun would reconsider in the absence of an assault weapon. It's my burden to show that the number of deaths they could achieve would be reduced in the event of such a ban. That person may still pick up a gun and shoot their classmates, but they will kill and wound fewer of them without an assault weapon to bear.

Again, Pro returns to the point about alcohol, now assuming my views on that subject. Again, it's irrelevant to this debate. I don't have to prove that a ban on assault weapons would be as beneficial as an end to drunk driving in order to win this debate, nor do I have to be consistent on separate issues.

Pro finally gets to the slide fire stock, and is jocular on the subject of someone firing their semiautomatic rifle at a rate that rivals and automatic one. I don't think it's funny, especially when that increased fire rate means more bullets in more peoples' bodies. He's completely non-responsive to the very point he quotes, which explains why it is unreasonable to keep something legal that's highly deadly just because it's not commonly used. In fact, despite spending a lot of his time on this point about how I have to prove that assault weapons are more dangerous, he's done scant little to ameliorate the harms of the various add-ons, most of which still make the weapon quite dangerous en tandem. group. So even if voters are buying that the 1994 AWB did nothing, it doesn't matter. This showcases a distinct and demonstrable harm that my case would address, something that that policy only accomplished partially. If nothing else, it provides strong reasoning for a ban to prevent future usage of these weapons.

Pro's response to the Hellfire trigger example is that he has no personal reason to own one and that, for some unknown reason, it's irrelevant to assault weapons, despite the fact that it fits his own description of an assault weapon to have one. His only other point here is that assault weapons cause muzzle climb, making it less accurate. That hardly matters within a crowded space, and it's ameliorated by the pistol grips. It's still firing more bullets, and if someone can control the gun effectively, it's a big problem.

On the detachable magazine, Pro is ignoring my [1] and [2], both of which classify semi-automatic guns with detachable magazines as assault weapons. What he's trying to do is to claim that since the 1994 AWB also included that other features were necessary to be classified under this, that my policy also includes it. It doesn't. Nowhere in my initial post did I state that. Besides, even granting his point, a detachable magazine is still a part of an assault weapon that isn't commonly seen in semi-automatic wepaons. If I'm lumping in some semi-automatic weapons with my definition of assault, that's fine. It still means he has to respond on the magazine capacity argument, which he is still ignoring. So long as he's ignoring that, it's reason enough for me to win this debate.

On the folding stock. Pro still doesn't see his own inherent contradiction. I don't need the concealment point. If you have a home invasion where someone is trying to move room to room quickly, then it doesn't matter who is wielding the gun, they're going to have an advantage in having a slightly smaller gun to slip through doors. The person with first hands on a gun and the element of surprise is the home invader, nor the person defending their property. Ergo, folding stocks provide more benefit to the invader than the defender. Pro is non-responsive to this point. And that's the opposite of "mak[ing] it as hard as possible for gun owners to protect themselves against criminals." Homeowners will still be able to defend themselves without assault weapons.

The next set of arguments is a laundry list of red herrings. I don't have to state or defend my views on any of those subjects in order to warrant this one. Pro needs to focus on the topic at hand; if he had, he might not have run out of space.

Pro then proceeds to throw his weight around with personal experience, not citing one thing in support of his claims for the pistol grip. He concedes that a pistol grip will increase the rate of firing (even if it's small, and it's not nearly so small as he claims, one bullet is enough to show a harm), drops that recoil is reduced as a result of their usage, and then claims that he knows better than my source because apparently he's been at this for a while. I don't doubt that he has personal experience, but if that's the case, it shouldn't be hard to find some support for his points.

He refers back to Brevik. Again, I explained in my last post why his killing spree was so much more deadly. It had nothing to do with the type of gun being fired because any gun would have done for that situation. Pro is non-responsive to my points.

His only response to hip shooting is that it's better to shoot accurately. In a crowded space, I'd say not, but also with the combination of bump fire and slide fire stocks, it is more dangerous, mainly because you're spending less time aiming and more time unloading bullets.

Pro drops my arguments regarding grenade launchers, which he conceded are available to some and therefore a present danger. He still has no basis for the argument that this ban would have "NO POSITIVE EFFECT." Pro drops my responses on Brevik.

Of course, he provides responses to some of these in the comments section, though I urge voters not to include those comments in the debate, as they are extensions on his argument that allow him to surpass the character limit. He imposed the limit to start, and he should adhere to it.
Debate Round No. 3
USN276

Pro

"I've provided reasons why at least part of that reduction is the result of the AWB" this is your opinion. You have no solid evidence to support the claim that the ban had an effective on homicide rates. If I can't make a reasonable estimate as to the average percent of homicides involving rifles in the past 20 years, how should you be allowed to present your argument as if it is the cold hard fact that the ban reduced the homicide rate. No one had supported the previous "assault weapons" ban said it had any effect. The only effect it had was the reduction of "assault weapons" on the streets. And that doesn't prove a reduction of so called 'assault weapons" automatically will reduce the homicide rate because we clearly see, and you even admitted there is a very minimal difference between "assault weapons" and regular semi automatic weapons. Your only argument which can support your claim that the ban had an effect on the homicide rate is that the rates dropped during the ban. you continue giving credit to the ban, meanwhile you won't don't mention that homicides involving firearms are at it's lowest today (while the ban has been dropped) and you also fail to acknowledge that homicide rates have the tendency to go up drastically and go down drastically.

The problem with con is that rifles make up such a low portion of homicides, yet, the OVERALL homicide rate went down. Look at this graph.

http://www.zeigen.com...

Look at the drastic drop in homicides that occurred during the 1930s. It's an even greater drop than in 1994. And you didn't look closely enough at the graph. The homicide rate begins to dip starting at 1992 and 1993. Have you taken that into consideration that perhaps the homicide rate was already dropping? This is the same thing people who try and defend the Aussie gun ban. They fail to look at the drop already occurring. When examining a graph, look at years prior to to a deadline or beginning.

"He mentions that the UK homicide rates jumped within 1 year. First off, it's a single year, and therefore it's difficult to create a trend for it" Con still fails to understand the point being made. Homicide rates can be erratic. I even show a steep decline in homicide rates starting from 1930 and ending at around 1943. So two important things. The drop in homicides didn't start in 1994, and there have been other previous drops in homicides before in U.S history. You don't have definite proof the ban had anything to do with the drop in homicides. How could it possibly be in the first place if so few gun homicides are committed by "assault weapons"?

"It's my burden to show that the number of deaths they could achieve would be reduced in the event of such a ban." and yet, the worst mass shooting ever was not committed by an 'assault weapon". You NEED to find sufficient proof an "assault weapon" can kill more people in a shooting. You don't have therefore, you don't have a legitimate argument to support your claim. Randomly stating a few mass shootings that involved "assault weapons" doesn't prove they are more dangerous. That is like me advocating a ban on red cars, and then me sending you pictures of car crashes involving red cars.

"Again, Pro returns to the point about alcohol, now assuming my views on that subject. Again, it's irrelevant to this debate." So was Hellfire triggers and bump fire stocks. If you have the "nanny state" type of idea of how citizens should be controlled, why are you ok with banning "assault weapons" which make up less than 2% of gun homicides but seem to be ok with keeping alcohol legal when 10,000 innocent people are killed a year. Are you also forgetting about the fact that most gun murder victims are criminals in they first place. So, with the fact that the vast majority of murder victims are criminals, why should the most popular sporting rifles in America (over 4 million in total) be prohibited because you have a hunch that they are a tad bit more dangerous?

https://www.google.com...-
8#q=most+murder+victims+are+criminals&rls=en&spell=1
http://newpittsburghcourieronline.com...
http://articles.baltimoresun.com...
http://www.rockawave.com...

"He's completely non-responsive to the very point he quotes, which explains why it is unreasonable to keep something legal that's highly deadly just because it's not commonly used." I'm sorry, but would you follow the same idea with pit bulls. Pitbulls are not very common, however they have a very high potential to being ferocious animals. Is it necessary to prohibit pit bulls too? Where does the line get drawn from just dangerous enough, to too dangerous? Again, pit bulls kill few people, but they are in fact deadly, and are rated in the top 5 deadliest dogs. Voters, please pay close attention to the point I am making here.

"In fact, despite spending a lot of his time on this point about how I have to prove that assault weapons are more dangerous" I like the that whole "I already proved you wrong" kind of kiddy thing. You proved me wrong? Then please explain why the homicide rate was already dropping before the 1994 AWB, the worst mass shooting EVER was NOT committed by an 'assault weapon" and the VAST MAJORITY of law enforcement say a ban on these weapons would have no positive effect on crime? lol. I see that is being childish that you would say that. Your an intelligent debater, that makes me lose my respect for you right there. The fact that you said that tells me you are not confident.

You should pay attention to what you say. You said you were using the definition of Diane Feinstein's idea of an "assault weapon" http://www.feinstein.senate.gov...

You should be more consistent.

"That hardly matters within a crowded space, and it's ameliorated by the pistol grips. It's still firing more bullets, and if someone can control the gun effectively, it's a big problem." Con COMPLETELY disregards what I explained to him about pistol grips and folding stocks and throws it under the bridge. He fails to trusts someone who actually shoots firearms, (unlike con) Con still fails to find proof a pistol grip can make a difference in a shooting. He makes the claim that pistol grips allow for easier hip fire, meanwhile a shooter is more efficient at shooting any targets holding the firearm up and aiming the sights. Con disregards the fact that hip firing can cause VERTICAL drops and climbs. One can shoot way too low or too high. Crowd or not, it does't make a difference.

Diane Feinstein's definition of an "assault weapon" isn't a semi automatic rifle with a detachable magazine. I am VERY confused with what you are talking about right now. I am not understanding whether you support a ban on semi automatic weapons with detachable mags, or a ban on "assault weapons"

"The person with first hands on a gun and the element of surprise is the home invader, nor the person defending their property. Ergo, folding stocks provide more benefit to the invader than the defender" Problem con fails to acknowledge. Even with the technology, criminals RARELY USE RIFLES for crimes. The odds that a home invader will have a rifle is VERY slim, therefore, home owners get the the advantage MORE from an adjustable but-stock. Con also throws this under the bridge because it does not fit is argument.

Con fails to provide any video showing a pistol griped firearm has the capability of firing faster. Con insults my personal experience with firearms, meanwhile uses baltimroesun as a "legitimate source" for firearm cosmetic features. (continued in comment section)
whiteflame

Con

The crux of Pro's argument against my evidence for the 1994 AWB is essentially this:

He's telling me I can't prove it is directly causal. He's saying that it can't possibly account for all of it, so it must account for none of it. No one supports that it had an effect. They're not that different from regular semi-automatic weapons. Homicide rates have stayed low, so obviously it wasn't caused by the ban.

Each of these is fallacious.

On the first, I've provided ample evidence to believe that it's highly likely. Have I proven causality? No, but I don't believe that's possible. What I've provided is the best explanation in this debate for a steady and long-lasting decline in homicides. Pro hasn't contested that it happened, and has refused to provide any alternate explanation. At the point that Pro is practically attributing it to magic, I think I have the better story here.

On the second, his argument that the numbers don't add up isn't sufficient. I made a clear statement in the last round that changes in gun policies can affect mindsets that extend well beyond a time frame. This applies to these numbers as well by altering behavior. But I don't have to win that 39% homicide reduction resulted from this alone. I've shown that it's highly likely that the AWB affected this ban substantially. I've supported that with several links. Pro has only challenged it with his opinion.

On the third, this is just false. I've provided several links to show that support exists for it having an effect. His own study supported some effect, however minimal and long term. If he needs another, here is it, from a gun owning conservative no less.[1]

On the fourth, I never said this. I said that there are traits of semi-automatic weapons that are harmful, but not that the additions only made a negligible improvement. In fact, that's been the basis for my arguments.

On the fifth, Pro is still dropping my arguments. I've shown that his own links support a long-term effect of the AWB beyond its tenure. I've provided reasoning for how it can change mindsets, which has also gone dropped. If anything, this extension of effect only supports my arguments, not his.

Pro keeps appealing to authority on the law enforcement issue. I haven't responded to this because it's opinion, just writ large. Opinion often doesn't mirror reality in the case of gun control legislation.[2] There's no reason to believe that law enforcement can adequately assess the impact of the AWB.

Pro adds an argument that homicide rates tend to drastically increase and decrease. This only supports my argument. That tends to happen when there's not a major regulating influence. He can call homicide rates erratic all he wants, but all we need to do is look at the evidence in the U.S. to see that that's not the case here during this time period.

Pro cites an article talking about another large drop off in gun homicides. Just because he doesn't care about alternate causality doesn't mean the rest of us don't. "The funds and work opportunities from New Deal relief probably eased some of the economic tensions and material inequality that contributed to more homicides."[4]

Lastly, Pro finally addresses the chart. Of course, he fails to notice that very similar slight changes as occurred in 1992 occurred in 1990 and 1985, both of which ended abruptly. This has been a continuous reduction over a 5 year period followed by a sustained low level of homicides. I've said this more than once, Pro has failed to rebut it. And still no alternate explanation is forthcoming.

Let's look back at my case for a moment.

I did pay attention to what I said from the outset. I said I was following Diane Feinstein's assessment of assault weapons, and then listed out the traits. I didn't say I would mirror it exactly, and I made it clear which traits I was talking about. Pro has chosen to ignore the fact that, on the top of that list, is detachable magazines. That's his choice. It doesn't mean it's not there. He also dropped my point that even if I was following hers exactly, it would still be relevant to the debate. Having something en tandem with something else in the definition of assault weapons still makes it a significant part of that description.

Pro launches into the second portion of our discussion by saying that I've never proven that assault weapons are more deadly. Let's look at the reasoning I've provided:

Faster firing (slide fire stocks, bump fire, specialty triggers, pistol grip)
Increased capacity (detachable magazines)
More accurate firing and hip firing (pistol grip)
Enhanced ability to navigate tight spaces (folding stock)
Capacity to fire multiple weapons (grenade launcher)

Pro has looked at them individually and provided a measure of mitigation in their individual usage, but has failed to rebut their usage en tandem. Even individually, he's completely dropped increased capacity, mostly dropped grenade launchers, and has spent so little time on the accuracy (I don't need video evidence, but if you want more, look at the 1989 Guns & Ammo quotes here[3]) and faster firing rates issues that he might as well have dropped them. Hell, he gave the argument for navigating tight spaces. That's his sole piece of offense, and it's been straight turned. His only response here is that, somehow, home owners get the advantage and not the criminal, though he never explains why having an assault weapon provides extra defense while providing no benefits to the criminals.

He's proceeded to use quite a few red herrings to try and make my argument sound ridiculous, which he continues to do in this round, but none of them have any basis in this debate.

The sole red herring I will address is pitt bulls. I really don't understand this. This is a living creature that can be trained to be vicious. It's not a tool, and the harms of banning pitt bulls from loving households outweigh the harms of them biting people. I wasn't aware that the ASPCA was doing videos on how automatic rifles need homes too.

Pro has a burden of proof too " he must show that there is either some egregious harm that results from their ban, or that there is no harm that results from their usage. He's barely engaged in any of the former, so he's hedging all of his bets on the latter.

The best evidence he's had for the mitigation point is that Anders Brevik managed a huge number of deaths without it, but he's ignored all of my responses regarding alternate causality, which all of his examples in the comments also suffer from to varying extents. Beyond that, the best he can manage is to call it rare, though all that does is reduce my impact. The outcome of a ban is still net beneficial if it affects 5% or 39% of shootings.

Pro talks about the "nanny state." I don't understand this argument. If Pro wants to defend mass murder of criminals, be my guest.

Considering the way that Pro has casually dismissed many of my deadly harms scenarios with humor and "lols," I find it funny that he's attacking me for being "kiddy."

Pro says I'm "fail[ing] to trust someone who actually shoots firearms." First off, he's assuming that I've never used a gun. Second, it's anecdotal evidence. I understand that Pro likely has more experience shooting than I do, but that doesn't make him an authority on the subject. Third, it's not meant to insult. Even if he was an authority, he'd need support for his points. His point of view on the subject is tainted by his role in the debate. I'm a microbiologist, but I wouldn't simply assert that my knowledge on the subject is true in a debate about disease.

1. http://articles.latimes.com...
2. http://www.theatlanticcities.com...
3. http://mediamatters.org...
4. https://www.princeton.edu...
Debate Round No. 4
USN276

Pro

I find it unbelievable how con fails to see this isn't the first time in U.S history where there was a sudden drop in homicides. I clearly showed him that in the 1930s, there was a mass landslide in homicides over a period of 10 years, yet he is essentially ignoring this. He STILL fails to acknowledge the drop did NOT beginning in 1994, but in 1992/1993. it is astounding that he truly believes a ban on a pistol grip and adjustable but-stock can actually decrease crime rates.

I am dumbfounded by his neglect of these facts and assertions. Still, he goes on trying to give credit to the ban, meanwhile forgetting the decline was beginning prior to 1994. I don't see how a ban on a particular rifle which accounts for so little homicides will change the mindset of rapists, gang members, and street thugs. (is this what you are inferring?)

Also, Con is not familiar with the 1994 "assault weapons" ban. The ban made it that you cannot have MORE than one "assault weapon" feature. Gun manufacturers made 1994 ban compliant weapons. For instances, they made AR 15s with just "pistol grips" So, how can you give credit to a ban if it didn't fully cover those pesky "assault weapons" you're talking about?

Now, I see the article you sent. it talks about the 1968 gun control laws and how when that was passed, homicides decreased. the 1968 gun culture laws mainly consisted of tougher background checks and penalties. How can you correlate the increase in background checks which is proven to prevent guns in the hands of criminals to the 1994 "assault weapons" ban which isn't even cover all "assault weapons" It was an absolutely ridicules article.

"Pro keeps appealing to authority on the law enforcement issue. I haven't responded to this because it's opinion, just writ large. " There is an issue here. Law enforcement are at the front lines of crime. They see it everyday. Who am I going to believe? A few politicians who describe a "barrel shroud" as a "thingy that goes up" (research what I mean) or law enforcement officers who see crime because it is their job?

"Pro adds an argument that homicide rates tend to drastically increase and decrease. This only supports my argument." i can't see how this supports your argument. We have seen homicide rates randomly decline with no new legislation passed during that period. I don't even know why i should both explaining this because AGAIN, homicide rates were falling PRIOR to 1994. BUT, that gets thrown under the bridge and is dropped by con.

Con tries to mention that the economic relief caused a decrease in homicides. The decline in poverty occurred. Look at the links below. The data doesn't seem to fit your argument that the decline in poverty was due to the decrease in homicides. Unemployment in 1932 was 23.6. 2 years before (the data goes by every 2 years) the unemployment rate was 8.7. homicides for 1930 was 8.8. For 1932, it was 9.0. Just .2 higher. In 1928, when unemployment was 4.2%, homicides were 8.6. This was lower than the period of when the economy was slowly improving, yet between the years of 1934 to 1940, the homicide rates were lower, yet the unemployment was higher in those years than in the 1920s.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

http://www.infoplease.com...

You had me confused, so if it makes you feel better, I apologize. I have been confused on your stance. i thought you were modeling Feinstein's idea of an 'assault weapon" because you said "Mine will follow the lines of Senator Diane Feinstein's proposal"

Here is the videos which show a non "assault weapon (by Diane Feinstein's idea) This will not disprove about the detachable magazines. This only disproves that an a rifle without a pistol grip and can easily be controlled and fired VERY quickly.

https://www.youtube.com......
https://www.youtube.com......
https://www.youtube.com......

These videos clearly show a pistol grip is NOT needed to fire quickly and accurately. Voters, I implore you to watch these videos and see that con is VERY wrong about pistol grips.

And I appreciate cons understanding that it is important for home defenders to carefully move around in a house incase a burglar breaks in.

If pro choose not see videos (and as a matter of fact, he did want to see proof) the voters can watch the videos. I don't know why we are talking about grenade launchers. They are NFA weapons. A grenade launcher is an accessory which requires VERY long waiting periods. There is no point in focusing on it.

"though he never explains why having an assault weapon provides extra defense while providing no benefits to the criminals." Incorrect, I proved that most crimes are not committed by rifles or "assault weapons" and "assault weapons" with adjustable but-stocks allow someone in a home to navigate through a house easier because of close quarters scenarios. If adjustable but-stocks just make the firearm smaller so a person can more through a house better, and the odds of a criminal having a rifle with an ABS, doesn't it outweigh the negatives to having it illegal? Did con mention anything about the fact that most crimes are committed by handguns and not rifles?

http://www.fbi.gov...

Unbelievable how con fails to understand the examples i provide for. Just to give a personal experience, my friends cousins owned a pit bull who was trained VERY well and ended up mauling his 8 year old sister who could have been killed. The dog was trained. Why do you have a problem with a cosmetic feature on a firearm labeled as an "assault weapon" because fearful politicians needed to find common characteristics of scary looking guns, but are ok with pit bulls, who can even be trained and have the potential to kill someone? Were you able to find an article on how a but-stock ended up getting an innocent person or a cop killed?

It is difficult for me to argue what he means by " alternate causality" because I have no idea what he means by that. If con can be more descriptive on that, maybe I can give him my input on that.

The "Nanny" kind of person (for example Michael Bloomberg) is the kind of person who feels necessary to "be everyones keeper" and prohibit anything that has potential to harm someone, even if that object is the most popular sporting rifle in America and is providing jobs for gun companies. What I don't understand is why you want to ban things without looking for alternatives. Over 90% of mass shooters were on or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs. Doctors like Peter Bregin, one of the top psychiatrists in the entire world says that these drugs cause these mass shootings. Why are you looking to prohibit guns from good citizens when there can be psychiatric drug reform and tougher background checks? Look how few mass shootings Switzerland has any they can own full auto weapons? They have tough background checks but no psychiatric drugs laws. Imagine if psychiatric drug laws were put in place in that country?

http://www.foodmatters.tv...
http://www.naturalnews.com...
http://www.wpbf.com...
http://www.wnd.com...
https://www.youtube.com...
https://www.youtube.com...

Voters, please read the links above.
whiteflame

Con

Much as this has been a terse debate, I'd like to thank my opponent for having it with me. I do respect him and his position, no matter how much we disagree.

Before I step into the arguments, let's look at my case. I think I made it very clear which issues were being addressed under my assault weapons ban proposal, and in what ways they mirrored Feinstein's proposal. I'm baffled that there is still, after 4 rounds of debate where, each time, I made a case against detachable magazines, my opponent is still confused about my case. That confusion on his part should not play out in the votes. I made it quite clear what my case was, and if he wanted clarification, it was up to him to ask either in the comments or in the debate proper. I saw assumptions, but no questions.

Now, into the arguments.

1. The 1994 AWB as an example of success.

Pro has spent a lot of time trying to dissuade voters from the notion on that 1994 AWB has had any effect. If he didn't understand the term "alternate causality," he should have made that clear from the outset. What it means is that he should have shown that another set of factors was responsible for the homicide reduction. I was hoping to see something in the way of an alternative explanation. As it stands, we can assume that his position is that random chance did it.

Voters should always prefer a version of events that has some reasonable sense to it over this type of scenario. If I can present any substantive justification for the AWB being part of the cause of this reduction in homicides, that's proof enough for me to win this debate on that alone.

Pro is still on this 1930's kick. I invite voters to look at his links " they're not hard to parse. What he wants you to believe is that this period from 1934-1940, where homicides decreased dramatically, was random chance. But I've already provided alternate causality. I even quoted my link, and I'll repeat that quote:

"The funds and work opportunities from New Deal relief probably eased some of the economic tensions and material inequality that contributed to more homicides."

In other words, the New Deal brought about sufficient relief during this time to ease tensions and reduce homicides. Pro is in no way responsive to this. He cites numbers showing that unemployment was still up through 1940, and he's right, but the New Deal did a lot of important things to raise economic hopes and help the poor. None of his links show anything on that. He has failed to engage my point and my link.

Pro keeps saying that the decline started before 1994, again ignoring my argument from the last round where I showed multiple time periods in which similar rises and falls have occurred with seemingly no rhyme or reason. I'm not saying that changes in homicide levels aren't ever random, just that the one following 1994 is very difficult to attribute to randomness. The fact that such a period exists and correlates strongly with the AWB is something Pro has yet to explain.

Pro does point out that the 1994 AWB is different from my plan. Glad he's finally grasped the concept that I brought up in R2, which was that this is a lesser impact as compared with my plan. This is just meant to be a baseline justification using evidence, it's not meant to be the same.

Lastly, Pro appeals to police opinion again. Their experiences are important, but they're individual, and most certainly not going to tell the whole story. No, I'm not appealing to politicians. I'm appealing to data, cold hard facts about homicide rates. Those tell the story impartially and across the country.

2. The unique harms increased as a result of assault weapons being legal to own

Even if voters aren't buying that I'm winning the first half of this debate, this is an easy place to vote. Pro has spent nearly all of his time here mitigating my impacts without ever actually erasing them. The fact that he cold drops the impact of detachable magazines on reload times is sufficient reason to vote here, because his sole piece of offense is only working for me, but I'll get to that shortly.

Pro keeps posting videos of guns being fired quickly, of course ignoring that he already conceded multiple points.

1) He conceded that it is possible to pull the trigger faster on a pistol grip
2) He conceded that bump firing, slide fire stocks, and specialty triggers increase the fire rate

These are all I need to win this point. Voters can watch all the videos he posted, but it hardly matters. These concessions still stand, and the point that increased fire rates lead to increased death do as well.

On accuracy, and I think he's losing here as well. Both my baltimoresun link and my mediamatters link contend that increased accuracy with a pistol grip is a reality. A few Youtube videos don't disprove the evidence.

On portability, Pro is conceding that it's beneficial for both the invader and the defender to have smaller rifles for higher mobility. He's still dropping my points about why that helps the invader more than the defender, so that's sufficient to vote for me as well. His sole response is that their usage among criminals is uncommon, but this has nothing to do with my point. It doesn't matter if they're uncommon. It matters if they present a uniquely larger danger when used in a home invasion, which they do with folding stocks. If Pro had wanted to say that they are more effective at defending a home than other guns, he could have made that point. He didn't. And remember, this is his sole piece of offense. Even if you're partially buying any of these points, they outweigh this single benefit he's ascribed to keeping these guns legal.

Pro still leaves the grenade launcher addition untouched in this final round, again sufficient reason to vote for me.

3. Red Herrings:

Maybe it's time I defined these. A red herring is a logical fallacy, meaning that something misleads or detracts from a given relevant issue. He's used quite a few of them, and honestly, I'm sick and tired of it..

It doesn't matter what my perspective on pitt bulls is (though I made it clear why they're different), just as it doesn't with drunk driving, comfortable seats and cup holders in cars, or anything else he's brought up. None of these affect the question at hand, which is, should assault weapons be banned? I don't have to go through these examples in order to clarify that my case is reasonable. If Pro had wanted to say that policies like this could lead to something worse, he should have made that clear. If Pro wanted to call me a hypocrite, he could have made that clear. Voters shouldn't care what my views on drunk driving are in deciding whether or not I've made a good argument with regards to assault weapons. I may be a terrible person (and probably am), but the arguments stand for themselves.

Pro leaves us with one last (and new) red herring. He says that we should instead be addressing psychiatric drug reform and background checks. I'd say we could do this right along with my policy and that both would be effective. I'd say that this, again, doesn't matter within the debate. Pro hasn't taken this as his couterplan in the debate, therefore it's irrelevant. If my proposed ban is net beneficial, then it doesn't matter if these could have been more so. I think world peace would be awesome, but it's not a plank in either of our plans. So let's just keep these in our imagination, or debate them later, OK?

Conclusion

We're assessing the benefits of assault weapons being banned. I've made a clear case where I've stated substantial and obvious harms that result from their continued legal presence, and I've shown that past policy has worked. Pro's sole response has been mitigation, and he's missed a lot of points in doing so. He's provided almost no reason for why these weapons should continue to be legal for the common good. I urge voters to ignore the arguments in the comments, and to vote Con for all the reasons I have stated.
Debate Round No. 5
88 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by ZMowlcher 3 years ago
ZMowlcher
PS, it's a shame the dumbsh*ts of this website vote bombed this debate.
Posted by ZMowlcher 3 years ago
ZMowlcher
@USN276 You had some very very good arguments. I'm not voting because of how hot topic guns are. Great job though.
Posted by Mhykiel 3 years ago
Mhykiel
Voting is not on the comments. Should use that to support law abiding citizen's have the right to own such guns.
Posted by whiteflame 3 years ago
whiteflame
Admittedly, a concession in the comments isn't a concession in the debate, but I'll admit it wasn't my strongest point to begin with.
Posted by USN276 3 years ago
USN276
Mhykiel. whiteflame kind of conceded from that argument in the comment section
Posted by Mhykiel 3 years ago
Mhykiel
I didn't see it asked but How many of those assault rifles used by criminals was legally attained?
Posted by Mhykiel 3 years ago
Mhykiel
I'm about to read through the debate. I'm a big pro-gun. Not crazy like my relatives. But I do think guns are tools and in the right trained hands could be used rightly.

I think it makes the public weaker targets.

I have a MOA sniper rifle that has some of the features Whiteflame talks about. If I own a gun why would I not want to be able to shoot more accurately and stable? A telescopic butt also means the gun can be used inside my house effectively. Anyways...
Posted by Dilara 3 years ago
Dilara
It doesn't matte what you do with them. If a criminal wants an assault weapon than they'll get it no matter what your laws are.
Posted by USN276 3 years ago
USN276
I mean it's one thing if they thought my arguments were more convincing and they agreed with me before, but they just gave checks to me on everything.
Posted by USN276 3 years ago
USN276
How silly of me.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by Comrade_Silly_Otter 3 years ago
Comrade_Silly_Otter
USN276whiteflameTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Hard one, but white had more convincing arguments. Both had good sources as well. Things where nice and organized on both sides.
Vote Placed by Mhykiel 3 years ago
Mhykiel
USN276whiteflameTied
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Reasons for voting decision: USN makes a point about drinking and the dangers that cause. It bares one to think is a ban on assault rifles from some other basis then just preventing deaths. It would have been to tackle the Ethics of such a ban. USN stated the 1944 ban was not a cause of the drop in homicide as Con claimed. This would require a BOP against what Con presented. USN spoke passionately but I don't think that passion was supported by sources as well as Con's Arguments were. So I'm giving sources to Con. And argument to Con becuase USN had BOP to prove why "law abiding citizens should be free to own assault guns". Which I think most the debate was on how "criminals use assault rifles". Neither party drew a logical chain from law abiding hands into criminals using ARs for killing. BOP was on USN. USN I encourage you to support why law abiding citizen's should have that freedom.
Vote Placed by thett3 3 years ago
thett3
USN276whiteflameTied
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Reasons for voting decision: See comments
Vote Placed by CJKAllstar 3 years ago
CJKAllstar
USN276whiteflameTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro had valid arguments, but so much of them were wiped out by whiteflame because he had evidence. You both had good sources, but whiteflame used them in the right place. With the homicide rates point, that needed sources and statistics. Because without them, I can only go the prevailing sources, which were whiteflame's. Good debate, but USN this is a message to you about the important of facts and sources in the right place. Because of that, whiteflame's arguments were stronger.
Vote Placed by bluesteel 3 years ago
bluesteel
USN276whiteflameTied
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments