I’ve written about this “quantum behavior” of the 5.56×45 round before, primarily from the military perspective. https://wanderingthroughthenight.wordpress.com/2017/05/22/the-quantum-behavior-of-the-5-56×45-nato-round/ But I think it is time to approach the same subject, but from the civil side.
One of the arguments made lately by anti-rights fascists after that want to limit your freedoms after the Parkland murders is that the AR-15 is somehow “exceptionally lethal” compared less scary looking firearms.
The data presented here doesn’t support that conclusion: https://www.buckeyefirearms.org/alternate-look-handgun-stopping-power
Even the US Army doing interviews with combat veterans discovered that the tactic of firing a “controlled pair” to adequately stop threats with the M4/M16 (which truly are assault rifles capable of automatic fire and regulated as machine guns): http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/1006163.pdf
The limitations of the M16 platform (and by extension the AR-15 which shares the common magwell size limitation) have even had one Ph.D. write passionately about how the entire system needs to be abandoned and replaced with something more effective on the battlefield: http://www.armyupress.army.mil/Portals/7/military-review/Archives/English/MilitaryReview_20120831_art004.pdf
Now, if someone wants to point out a weakness in my argument, that an M16 at war is not the same thing as an AR-15 in the hands of a criminal. This is a good observation and my counter point becomes how in the world the same bullet, traveling at the same speed, somehow changes in lethality based on the setting? This question, if explored honestly, makes it quite obvious that the lack of lethality on the field of battle has quite a bit to do with that environment. And this brings up a very big problem for anyone who tries to sell “exceptional lethality” as an argument.
The problem with using “school shootings” as some proxy for actual “lethality” comes down to the fact that it is a target rich environment filled with people who can’t fight back. This is why the Hi-Point 9×19 carbine (often derided as a craptastic redneck toy) killed so many people in Columbine. The “lethality” comes from the environment, not the particular firearm. The Virginia Tech shooter used a 9mm and 22 rimfire pistol, neither of which have been accused of some magical “exceptional lethality.” So unless an anti-rights fascist is willing to be intellectually honest and say, “screw it, I’m hear to take away your guns!” at this point they’ve lost the “exceptional lethality” argument.
Schools are made to allow large amounts of people to stream into hallways and out, in case of a fire or other emergency. They are well lit, with long corridors and large open spaces that make it difficult for a disarmed person to hide. In short, if you want to catch fish, you need to go where the fish are. If you want to kill a lot of people, you need to shoot up a concert in Vegas or a High School filled with kids. None of this is news to anyone in the security industry, terrorists and crazies love target rich environments.
But…there are people who would rather disarm you than face up to the fact that security doesn’t come from disarming good people. Security comes from investing in the facilities, equipment, training, and payroll to harden targets. There are no shortcuts.