Nate Watkins Profile picture
Feb 18, 2018 11 tweets 2 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Look, there is a lot of nonsense being pushed about "assault rifles" and how AR-15's aren't similar to military weapons. So here's a thread from a combat vet to explain this once and for all. Please RT 1/
Yes, it's true the phrase "assault weapons" isn't that accurate because we generally use it to refer to fully automatic weapons. However, that's really a meaningless point because we have already decided those are too dangerous for civilians 2/
Notice you never hear anyone complain about the lack of rights to mount a .50 cal on their Jeep? We also intuitively understand that letting people carry grenades around is a ridiculous idea. Both of these things were restricted by the same Congressional legislation. 3/
So who cares when ppl call AR-15's "assault weapons?" It's obviously a reference to military styled rifles. And don't kid yourself, they are identical. They're heavily marketed as such. You'll often hear ppl mock gun control advocates for not knowing the differences. 4/
But that is a bullshit complaint designed to ignore the real issue. In reality, the only difference between the civilian AR-15's and combat M4's/M-16's is a tiny selector switch that allows to shoot in bursts of 3 rounds. We learned decades ago to fire semi-auto, like AR-15's. 5/
No one uses this 3 round burst option. So, whenever you hear someone try to pretend there's some big difference between civilian and military rifles, it's nonsense. You could give combat troops an AR-15, with civilian modifications, and no one would even notice the difference. 6/
There's absolutely no reason for any of these weapons to exist in civil society. Even street cops don't need to carry them. They are for tactical operations like SWAT teams. We have to stop ignoring the fact that these weapons are famous among mass shooters for a reason. 7/
They are marketed to take advantage of the allure of military gear. We even have a saying called "tacticool" where civilians load up with all of this pointless gear (vests, sites, backpacks, magazine pouches, etc) to feel like they're ready for combat. 8/
Selling "assault weapons" directly contributes to this, and there's a very specific profile of shooters who end up getting caught up in this ridiculous commercialized fantasy of combat. It's an insult to the lives of lost soldiers to act like this stuff is cool and fun. 9/
So in closing, it's fine to call them assault weapons. They are basically identical to the standard issue military rifles we carry in combat, and they should not be on America's streets. #VetsForGunReform

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