Consider the gun… propellent (fuel), projectile, a cylinder, and an ignition device to set it all off. Then imagine hooking a connecting rod and crankshaft to that projectile and you’ve got an internal combustion engine. The same progression of technology occurred in the manufacturing process, as the skills learned and machines invented to make guns were adapted to making engines. Then there’s that little concept called “interchangeable parts” that made production and maintenance of first guns and later a whole plethora of other good stuff available to the masses.

So it’s no surprise that even in the 21st century, some of the best machinists are gunsmiths too, and many gearhead’s interests in things mechanical extend to guns too. That’s mostly a good thing, training a good chunk of the population in markmanship in case our nation should have to go to war. But in the hands of a few, guns can be an all too effective tool to slay innocent citizens and children. And currently there’s a call to ban more guns, which would be doomed to failure before it was even enacted- In big city gun violence few of the perps are legal gun owners, and America is so saturated with guns already and the technology to make more is so available that any ban would be doomed to failure.

That leaves us with one other option, keeping troubled folks, mostly young men, from using guns in murderous manner. When a rider is braking too late and cornering too fast or a trucker is tailgating we use peer pressure to bring their behavior in line. If that fails, we tell the course marshall who black flags our errant rider or police who ticket our too fast trucker. So should we handle the troubled amongst us when they look to guns to solve their perceived problems… Don’t isolate them further, and when they ask questions like what gun will fire more shots in less time than needed to drop any game, firmly dissuade them. And if that fails, call in the authorities… You may be saving their life, your life, and children’s lives.

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