As a combat veteran I have increasingly been concerned about frequent statements that guns protect citizens and are needed for self-defense.  As the number of guns increase, particularly assault weapons similar to the M-16 I used in Vietnam, the number of violent, senseless deaths has concomitantly risen.  Most of these deaths are preventable.  Few of the mainly conservative "macho men" realize what a round from one of these weapons does to the body.  Depending on the type of round used (i.e. armor piercing) with the high muzzle velocity of these weapons the damage produced can be significant and few survive it.  I can tell you that these weapons will essentially blow a hole at the exit point on a human body the size of a basketball or larger.  Believe me, you will have to live with that vision for the rest of you life.  Don't believe the hype that you need these weapons for self defense.  Read the study from Harvard below, and click on the link for substantiating information.


From: Harvard Injury Control Research Center

Gun Threats and Self-Defense Gun Use:

Guns are not used millions of times each year in self-defense

Most purported self-defense gun uses are gun uses in escalating arguments, and are both socially undesirable and illegal 

Firearms are used far more often to intimidate than in self-defense 

Guns in the home are used more often to intimidate intimates than to thwart crime

Adolescents are far more likely to be threatened with a gun than to use one in self-defense 

Criminals who are shot are typically the victims of crime 

Few criminals are shot by "decent law-abiding citizens" 

Self-defense gun use is rare and not more effective at preventing injury than other protective actions 


M. Steven Shackley

Vietnam service 1969-1970