We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Police do and can prevent crime. Witness NYC since the use of computer data on crime hot spots, arrest of fare-busters (who often are felons) and stop and frisk in high-crime communities.
The recent NYTimes article shows that not only has NYC dropped crime rates, particulary for violent crime, but it also has dropped imprisonment rates.
The recent police commissioners made their bones by street presence of police in high crime area, thereby dropping crime rates. And, the police here want gun use and ammunitiion restricted: no legitamet need for 110-clip or even 10-clip automatic rifles in New York City.
Agreed with your opening that police can and do prevent crime (alas, nowhere near all of it). We begin to part ways in your second sentence, the whole stop and frisk bothers me.
We're headed in differing directions by the time you tell me, "..the police here want". I'm sure they would like warrantless wiretaps as well. "The Police Want It" is a no go vs "Shall Not Be Infringed."
We're at loggerheads when you toss in "Legitimate Need"
You finish with a few mistakes/exaggerations common with folks who don't know much about firearms. It's a MAGAZINE, (and anything holding 100 rds would be a drum magazine) NOT a clip and it's SEMI-automatic, NOT automatic.
You're talking about regulating/banning something you don't have a working knowledge of. That does not strike me as a good starting place for any legislation, let alone one the deals directly with a Right enumerated in the original Bill of Rights (#2 out of the Top Ten you might say).
But here's my real problem with your post. This whole "legitimate need" argument. When you tell me what I can have, or not, I'm a bit amazed at your hubris.
You're telling me that I am only allowed something I NEED. If I simply WANT something, well then, that's up for argument, and YOU will decide if I have a "legitimate" need ?
And you wish to apply this to my right to defend myself, my family, my home and my business, as specifically enumerated in the Second Amendment ?
I couldn't agree more with NorthCountry. Yes, I am sure that the powers that be (police and big government) want our (law abiding citizens like me) access to big, scary guns with big, scary magazines. But like NorthCountry, I agree that the Founding Fathers forsaw this eventuality and specifically protected our right to own weapons to protect ourselves.
I think that they specifically thought about both personal and home protection as well as the ugly possibility that we might need our state-of-the-art weapons to defend ourselves from a tyrannical government. Now more than ever, we need guns to do this. Just because we haven't had to use them yet to stop government officials doesn't mean we won't need them in the near future. God, I hope we won't, but I don't want to think of the consequences if we do submit to disarming.
And I completely agree with NC that I have the ability to judge which gun is right for my situation much more accurately than some politician or bureaucrat in Washington. Of course, that last sentence is irrelevant since the 2nd Amendment specifically says that the government won't try it. Now if the national government wants to formally amend the Constitution to repeal the 2nd Amendment, it is welcome to try. All that would be needed would a proposal from 2/3 of each chamber of Congress to get the ball rolling and then ratification by 3/4 of states (either in state legislatures or special conventions in each state).
My sole comment is that the 2nd Amendment does not grant us the right to bear arms. It merely codifies the individual right to defend one's self, and the Supreme Court itself has verified that right. In fact, in Black Elk vs U.S., 1900, they made it legal to resist with lethal force violation of one's rights.
Now, do the math: there are an estimated 47 million gun owners in the United States. If 10 percent of them resisted a confiscation with force, and 10 percent of that group killed one of those confiscating guns, we would have 470,000 new prisoners in our prison system, and 47,000 dead cops! Can America afford that kind of math?