The Speed of Death

"Knowledge, knowledge. Without it a man is a fool no matter how much he knows." I have a longtime friend who always tells me that. He's right. So I set out to get myself some more knowledge.

Who knew, "Unfriend" first appeared on the printed page back in 1659? And who knew Winston Churchill's mom was born in Brooklyn, NY?

Then there a few other things I now know. Though I wish I didn't.

The average muzzle velocity of a Glock 17 is about 1,230 feet per second. That was the type of handgun used by the shooter in the Orlando Pulse massacre. And the average muzzle velocity of a .223 AR-style Sig Sauer MCX -- the assault type rifle also used at Pulse -- is nearly 2400 feet per second.. Again something I wish I didn't know. But you can't unlearn death.

According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation there are 5-10 million of these massacre machines out there in the US. With all of this potentially large scale lethality floating around, the muzzle velocity of the MCX and other similar assault-type rifles is particularly important. After all, these assault type rifles seem to be the weapon of choice for the mass shooters of children, church goers and ordinary people out living their lives.

There's one other gun shot statistic that's perhaps the most telling and translates into making the AR-15 type weapon its own sort of WMD. That figure is muzzle energy which is measured in foot pounds. In the case of an AR type round we're talking nearly 1,300 foot-pounds. A .223 bullet from one of these weapons travels so fast and enters the body with so much kinetic energy, its destructive power to human flesh is beyond terrifying. That's the foot-pounds at work. About 3 times the force of a 9mm handgun. That's not just me talking. That's also trauma surgeons who have to deal with trying to save the live of someone shot with an AR-15 type round. Or rounds.

Just ask one. Like UT Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio trauma surgeon, Donald Jenkins. Talking about what an AR round does to human bone Dr. Jenkins says, ""It would just turn it to dust... the liver looks like a jello mold that's been dropped on the floor."

But wait. There's more. The shock waves that radiate out from an AR-15 type of round means it doesn't even have to actually hit any specific organ to kill you. That's why, according to Dr. Peter Rhee, University of Arizona trauma surgeon, a handgun wound might need one surgery. An assault type weapon wound might need ten.

So go ahead NRA-ers, Second Amendment flag-wavers, Open Carriers and Modern Sporting Rifle lovers (that's the euphemism for assault-type rifles). Use your ARs to frighten the crap out of people in the grocery store, or people just walking down the street. And by all means use them to hunt. With just a few shots you'll get pre-ground deer meat. Enjoy. But is that meal worth the deaths of so many of our children, the shattering of so many tiny bones, brains, hearts and lives? Is it really?