of Guns

Types of Guns

The use of guns for sporting is prevalent in the U.S. and Canada, although what sets apart Americans is the number of people choosing handguns for self-defensive purposes. Guns aren't just practical in this country: they're symbolic of individual freedom. Restrictive environments in Germany, Japan, Turkey, South Africa and other nations have passed strict gun laws in the past -- particularly before a period of genocide -- but America trusts its average citizen with the freedom to choose right from wrong. Gun collectors and hobbyists have a number of guns to choose from these days, although they may be prohibited by state and local laws, wherever applicable.

One broad category of guns is handguns. These compact weapons are designed to be hand-held, as the name implies, and are specifically designed for self-defense purposes. Their size, weight and style make them ideal for those with concealed carry permits. However, for this very reason, a number of municipalities have deemed these weapons "more dangerous" and have placed stricter gun regulations on them. Many collectors appreciate the hand firearm's ability to fire multiple shots quickly more than its accuracy. The most common defensive guns are the double action revolver (such as the Smith & Wesson 500 or the 357 Magnum) and the semiautomatic pistol (like the Glock 17 or the Browning 9mm).

The double action revolver type of guns differs tremendously from shotguns and semiautomatic pistols. The revolver is heralded for being less expensive, easier to use and more accurate than a semiautomatic. However, they also are limited to only six shots before a reload and the triggers are harder to pull. Criminals often steer clear of revolver guns and ammo because they must conscientiously pick up all the shell casings after rounds are fired so they can't be used as evidence. They also must be very accurate, since they only have six shots. Also, because there is a gap between the cylinder and barrel, gases may escape and leave a residue behind that forensic pathologists can use to reconstruct the crime scene.

Another category of guns is the Assault Rifle, which has been classically used by the military in warfare. These guns can be semiautomatic or fully automatic and often will shoot out several bursts of shots with one trigger pull. According to the U.S. army, an assault weapon is defined as "short, compact, selective-fire weapons that fire a cartridge intermediate in power between submachine gun and rifle cartridges." These may include: the AK-47, the Daewoo K2, the M4 Carbine, the XM8 rifle and the M16 rifle. There is some question as to whether these killing machines are covered in our Second Amendment rights, but many gun enthusiasts say these are among the most coveted collector items.

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