You liberals, listen up! Your arguments against ownership of “automatic” (sic) weapons pale not because they spit out more than one or two rounds per trigger pull. Nor is it about the “size” of the weapons spitting out these rounds. Nor is it about the Framers of the Constitution not meaning “weapons of war”! Not at all! This is all about a lack of power due to the level of knowledge regarding such things as is provided by the National Rifle Association. It is, however, understandable that fear is a motivating factor because invariably people fear what they don’t understand. And given the horrific articles written by vastly liberal media outlets, it’s no wonder.

A little knowledge is a good thing. And knowing about what one speaks gives power to the person who possesses that knowledge.

If I ask a roomful of liberals why they think the Framers would be against a person owning an AR-15, beyond the boos and catcalls I would be told the Founding Fathers did not intend for common citizens to own what are popularly referred to as weapons of war. Here’s a flash: The weapons of war being used at the time our nation was founded were muskets and cannon. The modern-day weapons in use are different in many ways, but the innovation was much more recent. Dr. Richard Jordan Gatling didn’t even patent his gun till Nov. 4, 1862. This might have been a high-rate-of-fire weapon, but it was not a fully automatic weapon. Oddly enough, Gatling invented it to demonstrate the futility of war. It might be futile, but it is also inevitable because someone always wants to impose superiority on another, whether it’s one country on another or thugs breaking into your house.

Full automatic weaponry rely on the blowback recoil of one round leaving the chamber and the bolt moving away from the receiver to chamber a new round and release the hammer mechanism to strike the firing pin and ignite the cap to complete the cycle.

Semiautomatic weapons break this cycle by not releasing the hammer so the next round is not discharged. That depends on the shooter pulling the trigger to discharge that round. The Gatling gun, for instance, needed the arm of the shooter to turn the crank, causing the hammer to strike the firing pin and hit the cap. In each case, the action is limited by the shooter’s abilities.

And what is so off-putting about hunting with an AR-15? The only thing that actually does damage is the round itself (.223 caliber/5.56 NATO). Yet many other rifles are chambered for this bullet – the M4, Colt/Mattel M16, Colt AR-15, Ruger Mini 14 (also called the “ranch rifle”), Kimber “Varmint Rifles,” Remington 700 ADL “Varmint,” etc. Incidentally, the Ruger Mini 30 uses the same round as the AK-47 which uses a 7.62 X 39mm round. This is equivalent to a .308 caliber commonly used as a deer hunting round. This round is also used in the Savage 10 FCM Scout and the Remington Model 799 hunting rifles. By comparison, my last rifle qualification in the Navy was with the M14, which is 7.62 X 51mm round. I have fired the AR-15, M16 and AK-47, but after putting 100 rounds of the 7.62 X 51 downrange, my whole right side was bruised. That gun really does kick like a mule.

Not a hunting gun? Please! Those who use that as their argument are clueless. Interestingly, the Mattel Toy Company — yes, the same company that makes Barbie and Hot Wheels — manufactured the handgrip for the M16 and stamped it with its logo.

Finally, every “able-bodied male” citizens and those who have declared intent to become citizens, between ages 17 and 45 (and not exempted because of their position as armed forces members, certain federal employees or clergy) comprise “the militia” according to Title 10 of the United States Code, Sections 246 and 247. The militia is also composed of organized (National Guard and Naval Militia) and unorganized components. If one is not in the military or one of the other exempted positions described, or in the organized militia, then he is ripe for the unorganized militia. And this is by law and duty. If you are between 17 and 45 and not exempted, then you are in the militia. It’s not your choice. This is your duty, as the law specifies. So banning guns or raising the age limit is in effect contrary to federal law.

To you liberals, my condolences that your arguments have just died. But that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

Pete Commander is a 14-year Navy veteran and holds a master’s degree in international relations (political science, security policy, international law, economics focuses). He is retired from federal serviceand lived in Bellmead.