Automatic vs. Semi-Auto: How Government Regulations Hold Back Progress

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Automatic transmission was introduced commercially in 1940. Imagine how inadequate the design would have remained had it been immediately restricted to government use. Instead, auto transmissions have 95% market share with pretty good durability and performance.

Now, we already have government regulators and their apologist who wish continue the restrictions on automatic weapons because of their supposed super-effectiveness. Like automatic transmissions, automatic arms have their uses and their disadvantages. Fortunately, almost all “automatic” weapons are actually select fire, meaning they can be run in semi auto and full auto modes. The car equivalent would be auto transmission with manual override. The reason for the videos above is the “sour grapes” segment of the pro-gun community that dismisses the usefulness of automatic fire entirely. They aren’t even trying to regain the rights lost to 1934, 1968, 1986, and 1989 restrictions. It’s to them that I would like to speak.

Automatic fire allows spreading of recoil over time. Instead of a dozen pellets of 00 buckshot exiting at once and bruising the shooter’s shoulder, a dozen .32 bullets exit over a second with no ill effect on the defender. With properly designed launch platform, they have no more spread than buckshot. Automatic weapons aren’t the solution to all tasks, but they have a definite place in the tool kit of the lawful people. The law should recognize that, and we should strive to roll back restrictions instead of meekly playing along. The government self-interest would be in the improvement in national defense from the rapid development of technology with suddenly expanded marketability.

As this photo with four casings in the air at once demonstrates, semi-auto fire can be quite rapid with a bit of practice. But it’s a skill that requires time to master and concentration to employ. That concentration is often better applied to other aspects of the situation, such as watching for foes, communicating with team mates, or moving.


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