This is a basically very good article, but I see two problems. I'd be bold in updating and correct it myself, but I'm afraid that I haven't really got the time this evening. (And I accidentally created a firestorm with my Gun safety page, so I'd like to let others handle this article. :-) )
1. The article should make the point more clear about the difference between fully-automatic and semi-automatic weapons. The article does make the distinction, but it describes 'assault rifles' as having a 'selective rate of fire', which is true only of true assault rifles, i.e. true military fully automatic rifles. The civilian versions are semi-automatic.
2. As much as I agree with the argument that the only significant difference between "assault rifles" and low powered hunting rifles is the selective rate of fire, I think this needs to be better supported.
Those who are in support of "assault weapons bans" often use dishonest arguments about "high rate of fire" and so forth. but there are honest defenders of these laws who point to such features as pistol grips as making these guns particularly suitable for "spray and pray" criminals. I don't agree with these poeple, but the argument needs to be noted as an honest point.
Is that political point even appropriate for this page? Perhaps it is. But we need to be careful to present the debate, rather than take a side in the debate. We can best present the debate by giving the strongest arguments from each side.
The main part of the article is very informative, I like it! The bit about the ban in California seemed out of place, though ... I've moved it to a subpage for now.
I see that the politics tie somewhat into the definition that various groups tag to the "Assault rifle" term. Maybe just mention that on the page itself? Other than that, I think the gun politics should be confined to their own page ... --Robbe
I certainly agree with Robbe: All aspects realting to gun regulation politics should be located on a separate page (with a pointer from here perhaps) and this page dedicated to hard facts about assault rifles. I think it's a good article, informative and fairly exhaustive, some politics pruning and we should be home free :-) By the way, isn't an assauylt rifle a military weapon by definition? Is there such a thing as a civilian assault rifle? Ah, better put that on US gun politics, hehe. --Anders Törlind
- As a temporary measure, would be alright to shift the stuff on resisting tyranny to a /politics subpage? --Robert Merkel