Terminology turmoil [View all]
All from Wikipedia -
Assault rifle: An assault rifle is a selective fire rifle that uses an intermediate cartridge and a detachable magazine. Assault rifles are currently the standard service rifles in most modern armies. Examples of assault rifles include the StG 44, AK-47 and the M16 rifle.
Automatic fire: An automatic firearm is a firearm which continuously fires rounds as long as the trigger is pressed and held and there is ammunition in the magazine/chamber. This is in contrast to a semi-automatic firearm which fires one round with each individual trigger pull.
Selective fire: A selective fire firearm has at least one semi-automatic and one automatic mode, which is activated by means of a selector which varies depending on the weapon's design.
Machine gun: A machine gun is a fully automatic mounted or portable firearm, usually designed to fire bullets in quick succession from an ammunition belt or magazine, typically at a rate of three to eighteen hundred rounds per minute.
An aspect of confusion starts here. Some current laws in the US refer to any full-auto firearm as a machine gun.
The term assault weapon was coined to be similar to the term assault rifle for the purposes of encompassing a large group of semi-auto firearms which also had some distinctive features.
Assault weapons: In the United States, assault weapon is a legal and political term used in firearms laws to define and restrict specific firearms. Definitions usually include semi-automatic firearms with a detachable magazine and one or more tactical, cosmetic, ergonomic, or safety features, such as a flash suppressor, pistol grip, or barrel shroud, respectively.
Magazine: A magazine is an ammunition storage and feeding device within or attached to a repeating firearm. Magazines can be removable (detachable) or integral to the firearm. The magazine functions by moving the cartridges stored in the magazine into a position where they may be loaded into the chamber by the action of the firearm. The detachable magazine is often referred to as a clip, although this is technically inaccurate. (Magazines are re-loadable and generally last for years.)
From Wikipedia under "assault weapon": Considerable debate continues in the United States on how assault weapons should be defined, whether or not they should be legally restricted more than other firearms, and even whether or not the term should be used at all. It has been asserted that the term is a media invention or intended by gun control activists to foster confusion with the public over differences between full automatic and semi-automatic firearms, while others argue that the term was promulgated by the firearms industry itself. The term is sometimes conflated with the term "assault rifle", which refers to military rifles capable of switching between semi-automatic and fully automatic fire.
Should the term Assault Weapon be eliminated from US laws?
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Yes, this term only adds confusion|
No, current laws using the term are clear|
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