An Opinion on Suppressors and the Hearing Protection Act

I have not written an article on gun control in a while, but since people have something new that they don’t actually understand to freak out about, it’s time once again to take off my Writer hat and put on my Gun Nut hat.

Today’s topic is suppressors, also known as silencers, which are basically car mufflers but for guns. Some folks are having a giant hyperbolic come apart because Congress is thinking about making suppressors easier for people to own. Note, they are already perfectly legal to own, but the process to get one is convoluted and stupid. This law would just get rid of the convoluted and stupid part.

For full disclosure, my gun related resume is listed at the beginning of this article. I own a whole bunch of suppressors, I’ve used dozens of different types of suppressors, and I owned a gun store that sold NFA items. Basically I’ve shot more rounds in a single burst than most of the people I’m arguing with have shot in their lives.

So when I see posts like the one copy and pasted below, I know how doctors must feel when some anti-vaxxer is “educating” them about how their healing crystals and essential oils will rebalance their chakras to prevent autism.

The following post is from author Elizabeth Moon, who is an extremely good science fiction writer, but who apparently knows jack shit about guns. Which is kind of sad, since she was a Marine. There is so much wrong with this post that later on I’m going to have to break it down and fisk it line by line, but here it is first in all its magnificence.



So the House is once again trying to sneak through a bill that deregulates silencers on personal weapons. Yes, they really want us all dead…they really want to make it easier for their right wing goons to shoot us and not be heard doing so. Their excuse is that firearms are noisy and the noise can damage a shooter’s (or their hunting dogs’) hearing.

Uh huh. And can keep people from knowing there’s someone going around shooting people, so they’re easier to shoot, and nobody knows it’s happening. No witnesses, no investigations, no prosecutions. Enabling careless irresponsible hunters (the kind who shoot people “by accident” without being noticed. Enabling assassins and terrorists, who shoot people on purpose for political or personal ends.

Because seriously, people have been hunting with noisy rifles and shotguns a long time and seem to be able to get along quite well by sticking those earplugs or headgear on before they actually shoot. People in this country are not going hungry because they can’t kill enough deer or rabbits or quail or elk to survive. And game is spotted visually more often than heard (migratory waterfowl perhaps excepted.)

No, guys, this is not reasonable. This is stupid and serves only to enrich the firearms industry which is already rich enough to pay a huge amount lobbying you. They’re making a profit already. Let this alone.



Wow… Okay. There is so much nonsense in there that it is going to take some time to refute it all. This is a perfect example of Brandolini’s Bullshit Asymmetry Principle, in that it takes an order of magnitude more effort to refute bullshit than to create it.

First off, it’s education time. How do suppressors work and why do we use them? When a cartridge is fired, the gun powder burns extremely rapidly, and this creates pressure which forces the bullet down the barrel. When those hot expanding gasses escape into the atmosphere, it is rather energetic and extremely loud.

If you’ve ever been around a really loud bang, you may have noticed that afterwards your ears ring. I’ve got some bad news for you, that ringing means you’ve permanently damaged your hearing. When that fades you will have lost some measure of hearing, and hearing damage is permanent and cumulative. The more of these loud bangs you are exposed to, the greater the damage. It will never get better. It will only continue to get worse.

I was a firearms instructor for about a decade and spent a lot of time running ranges and teaching people. I was religious about wearing my hearing protection, but if you spend enough time on the range you will be caught unaware eventually and somebody is going to touch something off right after you take your muffs off. 

I have tinnitus. Basically, there is literally no sound of silence in my world. For me it is a constant ringing noise that’s about the same pitch as my lawn sprinklers. I also can’t pick up a lot of things in higher ranges, like for many years, my daughters’ voices. If you’ve ever spoken to me in the dealer’s room of a con, you’ll notice that I tend to lean over the table to get close to the speaker. That’s not because I’m being weird, it’s that I can’t understand you, especially in a room with background noise that aggravates the perpetual ringing.

I’m not alone. I’m sure audiologists love old gun nuts because they sell a lot of hearing aids that way.

Guns are loud, but are also incredibly useful. If you want to be proficient with a firearm, you must practice with it. So we put up with the loudness and put things in or over our ears in order to mitigate the damage as much as possible.

However, muffs slip. It is really easy to break the seal of an ear muff when you place your cheek on the stock of a rifle. Boom. Hearing damage. Or that little foam plug in your ear isn’t squished in quite right, or deforms and falls out? Boom. Hearing damage. I used to hate when I came home from a long day teaching a class, and I’d hear that ring that told me that at some point I’d screwed up. Because there’s no going back.

Suppressors were invented to mitigate that danger. You can call them silencers too, that’s fine, but Silencer was a brand name, not a particularly true description. It’s like Xerox or Kleenex. Many of us gun nuts just refer to them as cans, because that’s basically all they are.

I wasn’t joking when I said they work exactly like the muffler on your car. As those expanding gasses from the burning gun powder escape the muzzle, instead of flying outward to bombard those delicate little hairs in your ears, the gasses are trapped in a can screwed onto the end. That’s basically it.

Cans are usually filled with something that increases the interior surface area that gives the sound waves more things to bounce off of. In the olden days we used things like rubber gaskets, steel wool, grease, and all sorts of other stuff. Nowadays since good precision machine tools are common and cheap, most of them use metal baffles. The hardest part about building a can to last is dealing with the temperature. That energy which would normally escape as noise gets trapped as heat. Cans get hot fast.

So if you screw a suppressor onto the end of your gun, usually it isn’t going to make it silent. Not even close. The actual noise reduction is going to vary greatly depending on a whole bunch of different factors. The quality and construction of the can is secondary to the power level of the gun. The more powerful the boom, the more can required to contain it. It’s all about the amount of expanding gasses escaping that muzzle.

Also, most bullets are supersonic. Just like a fighter jet, when that bullet breaks the speed of sound it is going to make a sonic boom. Though since bullets are much smaller, it is more of a sonic crack. The baffles in a modern can never actually touch the bullet, so they do nothing about the bullet breaking the sound barrier.

I won’t get into decibel ratings (which are indecipherable gibberish to most folks anyway) but if you slap a suppressor onto a standard rifle, shooting standard ammunition, it is still pretty loud. It is still noticeable by anybody nearby. Everybody is still going to hear the sonic crack of the bullet. Only for the shooter is doesn’t feel like you’re getting hit in the ear canal with a hammer.

Regular pistols with regular ammo aren’t movie gun quiet. Not even close. In the movies the hit man shoots somebody with his 9mm and the people in the next room don’t hear it. Bullshit. A suppressed 115 grain standard 9mm sounds like taking a big ass dictionary and slamming it down as hard as you can flat on a hardwood floor. WHUMP. Bystanders are still going to hear, it’s just not as sharp.

There’s also the mechanical action of the gun working. On a semi-automatic firearm, the action is still going to cycle, and that also makes a pretty distinct noise. Bullet impacts are surprisingly loud, especially when they land close to you.

Can you get a gun movie quiet? Yes. It is possible, however it means using slow, subsonic ammunition that never breaks the sound barrier, a high quality can, on a manually operated firearm like a bolt action. The easiest way to do it is with a weak little .22, though there are bigger specialty subsonic calibers (not cheap, but fun), but There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. All of those are going to suck over any kind of distance because slow bullets drop fast, which means you can’t hit crap because you have a trajectory similar to a rainbow.

Basically, cans aren’t magic. All this stuff is just basic physics.

Suppressors are also perfectly legal at the federal level, and legal in most US states right now. The law regulating them dates back to the 1930s (the National Firearms Act) and it doesn’t make a lick of sense. The NFA is like the poster child for silly pointless government inefficiency.

Quick version, in order to purchase a suppressor you need to get it from a special kind of gun dealer (an SOT Title 3 or 7, which I was). Then you fill out some special federal paperwork and pay a special tax ($200) to the BATF. This paperwork (the Form 4) is actually pretty simple, the kind of thing that could be done over a website, or processed by a private company with a couple days turn around, but the BATF takes about a YEAR (not a typo) to cash the check, stamp the paper, and mail it back to you, so that you can take possession of your suppressor.

The last can I bought it took the ATF nine months to approve it, which is actually pretty good. I’ve had them come back in as fast as four months, and as long as eighteen. I’ve got two stamps that I’m waiting for right now.  It’s not like they’re doing a rigorous background check that whole time or anything. That’s all done instantly with a computer database. It is literally just a year of waiting for a government employee to work through the stack, to stamp your paper and put it in their registry. (yet somehow people still thought the government was going to improve healthcare? Go figure)

Basically, these things are already legal, and lots of us already own them. I’ll get back to just how many of us later.

The thing that congress is talking about doing is moving suppressors from the NFA, to treating them like they were regular guns. The NFA is bloated, inefficient, slow, and basically a useless relic requiring 1934 level tech. We have a National Insta Check System already for firearms purchases, so there’s no reason they couldn’t just use it instead. Personally, I think they’re just glorified pipes, so even treating them like a firearm is kind of silly, but it’s an improvement over our current archaic system.

Now let’s break down Elizabeth Moon’s hyperbolic silliness, line by silly line.

So the House is once again trying to sneak through a bill that deregulates silencers on personal weapons. Yes, they really want us all dead…


That’s just stupid. If congress wanted us all dead it would be easier to just put the democrats from Flint in charge of our water supply.  


they really want to make it easier for their right wing goons to shoot us and not be heard doing so.


That’s right. Congress wants roving bands of redneck ninja death squads, silent but deadly, offing delicate Bambi-like progressives who were just standing on the corner minding their own business. 

It was that stupid line which caused me to write this blog post. I like Moon’s books, but that line took the gold in the thousand meter moron.



Their excuse is that firearms are noisy and the noise can damage a shooter’s (or their hunting dogs’) hearing.


Nope. That’s perfectly true. Already detailed above. A single gun shot will cause hearing damage, and all hearing damage is permanent and cumulative. I mentioned how suppressors are already legal here, but they are considered normal safety equipment in some European countries, and it is considered rude to shoot at a range without one.

That is my excuse. I’ve shot a lot, but I’ve never even joined a single right wing murder squad… I must be doing this wrong. 

Plus, deaf dogs? That’s just sad. I didn’t even think of that. Poor things. HPA now! Won’t someone think of the puppies?


Uh huh.


Yeah huh.


And can keep people from knowing there’s someone going around shooting people, so they’re easier to shoot, and nobody knows it’s happening.


Sure, if you’re dealing with TV assassins using action movie physics. Those Redneck Ninja Death Squads are elite operators.


No witnesses, no investigations, no prosecutions.


“What do we have here, Sergeant?”

“Well, Detective, we’ve got a body with multiple gunshot wounds, there’s shell casings over there, we’ve got eye witnesses, security camera footage from the surrounding buildings, cell phone footage from the bystanders, and a bunch of other pieces of forensic evidence… But nobody actually HEARD the gunshots due to the whopping 28 decibels of reduction. So we’ve got no case.”

“Okay, cool. I’m just going to call it a day. Praise Trump.”

“Praise Trump.”


Enabling careless irresponsible hunters (the kind who shoot people “by accident” without being noticed.


Following that logic we should take the mufflers off of cars so that drunk drivers don’t get away.

Plus, I like how she puts by accident in quotes, because you know how it is out here in red state flyover country, with us constantly getting away with outlandish murders and nobody ever notices. All I have to do is tell my local sheriff, “aw shucks, I totally thought he was a cow” and we all have a good laugh.


Enabling assassins and terrorists, who shoot people on purpose for political or personal ends.


Yes. Because even though there are millions of suppressors already in circulation, and anybody with some basic mechanical knowledge can improvise one, a professional hit man never would have thought of using a suppressed weapon before now. Sure, we’ve got drug cartels who manufactured their own submarines, but that $200 tax is just too hefty. And I can just imagine all those terrorists who’ve been thwarted by the NFA. “Oh no! I have not done the proper tax paperwork on my silencer! Abort the mission!” They must be from those same terrorist groups who obey Gun Free Zone signs.


Because seriously, people have been hunting with noisy rifles and shotguns a long time and seem to be able to get along quite well by sticking those earplugs or headgear on before they actually shoot.


This is stupid because it makes a few shockingly ignorant assumptions. Hunters don’t walk around wearing plugs, because they are annoying, and make it hard to hear what’s going on around you. Even electronic amplification muffs start to suck pretty fast when you’re doing anything other than actively shooting (and your ears get hot). So most hunters don’t wear earpro while hunting. When they see a deer, they don’t suddenly stop and pull out their plugs. Like hang on a minute Bambi, I’ll be right with you. Hell no. They take the fucking shot.

And once again, boom. Permanent and cumulative hearing damage.


People in this country are not going hungry because they can’t kill enough deer or rabbits or quail or elk to survive.


What a derpy straw man. I’m deaf, not hungry.


And game is spotted visually more often than heard (migratory waterfowl perhaps excepted.)


Moon has obviously never been hunting. And if I’m wrong and she has, I’m guessing she was remarkably bad at it.

What a stupid thought. Like the ONLY possible thing a hunter would need his hearing for is spotting animals, and not all of that normal hearing stuff we use our ears for every single day, like hearing somebody calling for help, or somebody shouting a warning about that bear that’s about to eat you, or the most likely danger, that dumb ass mountain biker flying down a trail about to run into you. Or shit, Elizabeth, maybe I just want to listen to the birds sing or the wind whistle through the trees and that’s none of your fucking business. 


No, guys, this is not reasonable.


Nope. It’s perfectly reasonable. I can’t help it if you are emotional and terribly ignorant about the topic. (Originally I was going to be polite, but when she got to the part about right wing death squads murdering with impunity, I said fuck it, let’s go)


This is stupid and serves only to enrich the firearms industry which is already rich enough to pay a huge amount lobbying you. They’re making a profit already.


I’ve talked about the myth of the ultra-powerful gun lobby on here before, but it’s crap. The gun industry lobby is comparatively tiny. The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) is nothing compared to any of the big industry or union lobbying machines. The NRA is big, but its dues are paid by regular people. Regular people like not being deaf.

The part about enriching the firearms industry is exactly ass backwards. Last year suppressor sales were up big time. Then this year when congress started talking about the Hearing Protection Act, suppressor sales cratered. Why? Because all of their customers thought if that there might be a chance they could buy the same thing without paying an additional tax and waiting a year, why buy now? So they crossed their fingers and waited.

Customers want cans, but they hate the NFA so much, that if there is any chance they don’t have to get a government proctologic exam, they’ll hold off. So until the HPA passes/fails, it’s actually hurting the industry.

I know of a couple different suppressor manufacturers who have had to lay off workers since rumors about the HPA started up. Some of the layoffs have been huge. They need congress to either act or not, because right now the wait is killing their business.

Also, if it passes, if you remove the NFA requirements then it becomes a whole lot easier for more manufacturers to get into the suppressor business. Which would increase the existing manufacturers’ competition. Right it requires an SOT7 to make a can, which is another specialized hoop to jump through. So I don’t know what the hell she thinks they’re lobbying for, starving their business, until they can add more suppliers to compete against? Brilliant.


Let this alone.


Make us.

You’re talking about bullshit like right wing death squads murdering people with impunity right now, but your side keeps getting this stuff embarrassingly wrong. You were wrong about “assault weapons”. You guys ranted about Uzis in the streets, yet the ban went away and nothing changed. You were wrong about concealed carry. You predicted wild west shoot outs over every parking space, but now its super common in most states and we’re fine. You’ve been wrong about gun free zones. They’re shit and killers love them. You’ve been wrong about every fucking thing. But you guys keep on lecturing us, aggressively certain that this time your doom and gloom will come true.

But it won’t, because it’s stupid.

Let me break down why moving suppressors from the NFA won’t result in a sudden upswing of right wing death squads creeping through your windows at night in their confederate flag ninja pajamas and MAGA hats.

We already have lots and lots of silencers.


That’s not all guns. That’s just NFA items. Regular firearms transfers are way, way bigger. Here are the stats from the BATF.

NFA items include legal machine guns (yes, those exist too!), short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, and suppressors. I couldn’t tell you how many of that are of each kind, but based upon my own time selling this stuff, suppressors are a big honking chunk.

There were 2.5 million NFA transfers last year alone. A ton of those were for suppressors. We’ve been making these things forever, and good ones don’t really wear out. But no right wing death squads have been murdering with impunity. Go figure. These right wing death squads must be constrained by something other than a supply of suppressors, oh, like maybe THEY ARE FUCKING IMAGINARY.

I could write a post in favor of a border wall because it would keep out the Loch Ness Monster and it would be about as realistic as Moon’s post. Because fuck you, Nessie. I’ve got my eye on you.

But wait, there’s more. Let’s suppose that our country has fractured to the point that we now have roving Redneck Kill Teams picking off caring liberals (why? Maybe they’re mad liberals made it so their poor hunting dogs are all deaf). So we’ve got this massive break down of law and order to the point murder is unremarkable, who gives a shit about the NFA? What’s to keep Bubba from going to Home Depot and putting together a functional suppressor out of some pipe and tubing? Hell, we can make these things out of oil filters. It ain’t rocket science.

Meanwhile, back on planet Earth, all those millions of transfers weren’t conducted by elite TV hit men, they were purchased by regular guys like me who are trying to protect what hearing we have left.

Excuse me, your highness, but if it pleases the crown, I would like to have the ability to teach my children to use firearms safely, in such a manner that they don’t end up hearing perpetual lawn sprinkler noises for the rest of their lives.

People like me, who have a clue about this topic, think it is dumb that sticking a pipe on the end of a gun is a felony. People like Moon are worried that if people were free to put pipes on the end of their guns, it will somehow lead to roving death squads and a complete breakdown of law and order. But they said the same thing about CCW and the AWB, so I wouldn’t hold my breath.

Suppressors are great, but they’re basically just another tool, and they’ve got their pros and cons like any other tool. I would encourage anybody who isn’t familiar with them to find their local range that offers NFA rentals, and try one out. Trust me, it’ll be a whole lot more educational than watching hit men on TV.

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222 thoughts on “An Opinion on Suppressors and the Hearing Protection Act”

  1. Wow.

    The level of denial in this woman is impressive. This is tribalism pure and simple. I don’t think a single conscious thought went into her opinion. It’s just “guns icky” all the way down.

    This is why it’s so hard to talk to people about things.

    1. I loved reading her Paks World books but she showed her true white supremacist hate in her science fiction and fantasy books. She is a member of Antifa.

  2. And you don’t even touch on the fact that noise is one of the major factors that results in shooting ranges closing down. Sometimes it’s environmental concerns, sometimes its safety, but a big reason is suburban encroachment on the range and the ensuing noise complaints. Widespread use of silencers would fix that.

    1. Problem is that a lot of people (like, I suspect, Ms. Moon), gun ranges having to shut down because of noise complaints is a feature, not a bug.

  3. “…serves only to enrich the firearms industry which is already rich enough to pay a huge amount lobbying you. They’re making a profit already.”

    Even if true (and it is), it’s not a valid justification to restrict ANYTHING.

    But it’s a huge red flag about her socialist/communist tendencies….

    1. Yes, she’s starting from a point of view antithetical to people making their own decisions. Anything coming from that mindset is “fruit of the poisoned tree”. smh

  4. Someone did point out on one of the threads that even with being a Marine vet, “REMF officer in IT specialty” doesn’t mean “firearms expert”.

    1. And here I thought even REMFs in IT were required to qual with an issued rifle of some sort. Is this yet more of that “Kinder, Gentler Marine Corps” I keep hearing about? Seriously, I Just heard the Marine Corps groan at being associated with Miss Moonbat here. Also, the fact that she was an officer is probably the reason second lieutenants are never trusted.

      1. She would have had to qualify with a rifle. That doesn’t make her a firearms expert. It doesn’t make her knowledgeable on suppressors (Tables 1 and 2 do not utilize suppressors). It does not make her a Rifleman.

        That “Every Marine a Rifleman” quote is horseshit. Every Marine knows how to use a rifle. That does not make them Riflemen. Riflemen are Riflemen. The rest of the 03 field are pseudo-Riflemen. The rest of the Marine Corps are Marine, but not Riflemen.

        Qualifying on a rifle range gives you about as much expertise on firearms as getting your driver’s license gives you on winning the 24 Hours of LeMans.

        1. In my experience as an LE firearms instructor in a large multi-agency academy, most veterans only know about the guns they were issued, and very little about even those. (You can see this in the worship of the obsolescent 1911.) And quite a few veterans wouldn’t listen to a thing a non-vet like me tried to teach them.
          So the fact that this writer was a Marine means nothing.
          (By the way, I thank all veterans for their service. But I don’t kowtow to them.)

          1. I personally like the 1911 because it is PROVEN, it fits my hands (barely, I’d get a double stack if they weren’t so damn rare and/or expensive), it’s elegant, simple, effective, accurate, and reacts the way I want it to. You wanna use something different, fine. There’s a whole hot mess of different choices, most of which are decent to good. What’s good for me isn’t good for everyone else.

            You wanna discuss viable alternatives and various features, we can have a civilized discussion. You wanna razz me for picking my shooting iron, I’ll give as good as I get.

          2. You can carry whatever you want. It’s America. You go to your church and I’ll go to mine. But you shouldn’t kid yourself that the 1911 is not obsolescent. It’s proven, sure. So are the Single Action Army and the Brown Bess.
            Time has marched onward and technology has changed since 1911. Name one other pistol that has a swinging link designed into it since the Titanic sank. (JMB’s REAL best design was the Hi-Power, not the 1911.)
            I carried 1911s for several years in the 70s and early 80s, and I had no problems with them, except for stovepipes caused by bad magazines. But 35 years ago I found something more modern. The 1911 is effective and accurate, yes, but it’s not as simple as more modern designs, either to maintain or to use. And “elegance” has no relevance in a lifesaving tool. You don’t buy your fire extinguisher for its looks, do you?
            I don’t have any problems with 1911s, or even with people who prefer them over other weapons. I am exasperated and amused by people who will say with a straight face that a heavy, low-capacity, single-action pistol is not obsolescent in the face of lighter, higher-capacity pistols with half as many parts.
            (Did I mention it’s America, and you can go to your church while I go to mine?)
            And the original point of my comment was, don’t automatically take anyone’s word about firearms just because the speaker is a veteran (or a cop). Learn all you can and decide for yourself. If that leads you to the 1911, go for it.

        2. “Sufficient to not be a histrionic insufferable ****.” is all I really require. And You learn a damn sight more than Table 1 & 2 if you’re actually worth what they’re paying you and learning what they teach.

      2. Qualifying with a particular weapon doesn’t even make one an expert on that weapon. I’ve met more than a few cops for whom handguns fall into only two catagories: pistol (e.g. semi-auto) and revolver. You’d think that people enforcing the game laws would have some knowledge about hunting guns – except the one that asked me where the “safety catch” was on my 1894. Nope, pogues (sorry, I simply refuse to use the other term) are no more likely to actually know anything about guns than the average liberal-arts college student.

      3. How’s that saying go? “The scariest person in the world is a butter bar with a map and a compass?”

    2. Ahem. I’m a Rear Echelon Mother F’ing Air Force vet in an IT specialty, and while I’m not exactly an expert, I do know which end the projectiles (slugs, shot, round balls, conicals, etc.) come out, and can usually hit what I’m aiming at. (No, I learned a long time ago that throwing lead at a moving Bambi is a real waste of ammo, and not exactly safe for anyone around you.) But then I was one of those really weird NCOs with several science degrees and no commission. It helped that my father was a gunsmith and one heck of a machinist.

  5. Good grief. I own a good half-dozen suppressors myself. This woman needs a golf bag of clue. A good can will knock off 30 dB from the sound of a shot…which for a centerfire gun takes it to hearing-safe but still pretty loud.

    And yes, NFA ’34 is a hopelessly antiquated law. The entire transfer setup is a relic of the days when having a radio in a police car was bleeding-edge technology. By today’s standards, it’s a cruel joke.

    1. I just searched Youtube for the Mythbusters segment where they tested suppressors. Sigh. I’ve heard other people talk about wanting to slap the Mythbusters guys for their lack of rigor, but this is the first time I’ve experienced it myself. They fired two semi-automatics, a .45 and a 9mm, both suppressed and unsuppressed, and recorded the sound each time. They then got a professional audio guy to compare the sounds, and found that the volume went from 160ish decibels to 130ish decibels.

      Okay, so that means the sound goes from “will definitely cause hearing damage” down to “jackhammer”. Which is still way, WAY louder than Hollywood’s silly little “Pew! Pew!” sound effect that they seem to think is the sound of a “silencer” (which should really be called a “suppressor” since while it does suppress the volume, it sure doesn’t silence it). But in the episode, Jamie made a big deal of how much the sound was reduced from the shooter’s perspective, and said that it does reduce it down to Hollywood levels. And so they called it “plausible” that real suppressors can reduce the volume down to Hollywood levels.

      ARE YOU FREAKIN’ KIDDING ME? There’s no way that Hollywood “silencers” are anywhere close to 130 decibels. All you would have had to do is to take a third sound recording, the “Pew! Pew!” sound that nearly every Hollywood movie uses to portray “silencers”, and measure its decibel volume. Voila: an objective test. But did you do that, Jamie? Did you?

      You had ONE JOB, Jamie! ONE JOB!

      1. It’s been a while since I saw that episode but wasn’t it that real life suppressors made firearms sound like they do in the movies? Technically speaking that is a different thing from bringing firearms down to Hollywood levels. While suppressors won’t bring a firearm down to the levels they do in movies, the actual sound of the shot can still be accurate. Just like how they often record the sound of actual firearms being used for movies to sound accurate, but the actual level of the sound is generally not portrayed accurately loud.

      2. You clearly missed the multiple times they tried to debunk Gunny Hathcock’s famous “Shot the enemy sniper clean through his scope” shot.

        1. They called it busted, but there was another show – more firearms focused – that proved it. they were more diligent in the type of rifle and *scopes* used. Apparently the Soviet/Chinese scope had fewer lenses than is common these days and that made all the difference.

          1. It was an old Mosin-Nagant with a Soviet/Chinese knockoff PU scope, which was a knockoff of a 1930s German design. No prisms, hardly any lenses.

            And mythbusters called it busted TWICE, before finally getting it right. Those fools don’t know beans about firearms. But hey, they work out of California, what do you want?

      3. Agreed. That one episode taught me to not trust the so-called “Mythbusters.” I have never *owned* but have fired a variety of suppressed firearms. Mythpropogators were well and truly deceiving the public. Even my wife, never having shot a suppressed firearm, was bug-eyed. She doesn’t know suppressors, but she had a vague idea what 130 dB SPL is. Since she played, I used “take the loudest trumpet note at 12-18 inches from the ear” as a comparison. She actually winced at that.

        And I’ve used the “unless its a subsonic .22 with a locked breech, it sounds like dropping the Oxford English Dictionary on a bare floor” analogy as well.

  6. Between 50+ years of shooting, and 25+ years of military aviation, I’m for all practical purposes, deaf between 3000-6000 Hz, and that IS with hearing aids. And I DID use hearing protection for most of those years.

    1. My dad was a gunner’s mate on his ship in WWII. By the time he was 70, his hearing was already going downhill so bad he could hardly make out what anyone was saying.

    2. Firearms and jets aren’t the only way to screw up your hearing. Boatyards and woodworking shops will do it too. I’ve gotten more consistent about protection, but what’s gone is gone.

      1. Bucking rivets inside a fuselage is also a good way to start losing hearing. I’m at the point where I wear ear-protection when I vacuum some rooms, because of the echoes and volume of the vacuum cleaner. Yes, I’m paranoid about the rest of my hearing.

        1. I bucked rivets inside a C-5 Wing Flap. The gun range was quiet compared to that. I’ve also been 20 feet from an F-14 on full afterburner. You know it’s loud when you can feel your internal organs vibrate from the noise.

  7. More of the usual projection. If silencers are “allowed” that’s bad to Moon, because she knows she’d try to murder people and think no one would notice.

    Though from your info it would be noticeable, but Moon wouldn’t deafen herself so there’s that.

    1. Scott Adams’ take on guns as Murder Devices was kind of funny. His assertion was that Democrats like to limit guns because most crimes are committed by Democrats – they know what they might do and people they know can and will do, so they logically conclude that anybody having guns is bad because they themselves shouldn’t have them.

      In the mean time, others use guns responsibly, legally, and to protect themselves from Democrats.

      It was kind of funny, the whole thing was couched as “I’m not saying this, the statistics are saying this”.

  8. I am snickering loudly as I re-read this.

    Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, I tend to think that every other area of the country is less hysterically silly. I don’t know whether to be relieved or sad that this level of ludicrous gun-paranoia exists elsewhere.

    1. I too live in the SF Bay area. It exists everywhere. I spent most of my youthful years in Maryland and in some ways the gun laws there are worse than Cal. The hysteria over any loosening of gun restrictions is a liberal/left wing disease that is spread all across the nation.

  9. Let me fix her argument and change it to something that at least vaguely resembles common sense: Allowing silencers to be sold more freely to the public will increase the numbers of silencers in the hands of the public such that through theft or other criminal actions they are used to commit crimes, crimes that will be more difficult to detect due to reduced gunshot noise.

    *That* is a somewhat valid argument.

    But just as easily scrapped because Joe-Thug on the corner can duct tape a 2-liter soda bottle on the end of a gun and, voila, he has a silencer with which he can do the same thing. Time to outlaw 2-liter soda bottles!

    1. It reduces the instantaneous sound of a gunshot (often in excess of 140 dB) by 30 dB. So it is still louder than your average lawnmower. Yeah, that’s really sooper sekret shooting there.

      OMFG. The stupid is burning my eyes out.

    2. My co-worker gun nut, discussing his experience on using suppressors, opined that the only way they really affect the ability to detect a gunshot is to, because of changing the sound of the shot, make it a little harder to localize where it came from.
      Does your experience agree?

      1. I might agree, under rare and specific locations. First, if you’re outside with no baffle surface between you and the shooter, localization is still absurdly easy, and a suppressor makes no difference.

        However, a suppressed gunshot with subsonic loads does sound different, more “drawn-out boooom” instead of the short, sharp “bang!”

        I’m probably not describing this well, but I’d guess that, in certain rare occasions, there might be some confusion as to exactly what direction it came from. Imagine an office with two doors on one side, both closed. I might accept that a suppressed gunshot could make it harder to tell behind which door the shot was. But you’d have no doubt what SIDE of the office it came from.

        To me, the issue of shot location as a reason to ban supressors is as useful to public safety as calling an AR-15 Sporter an “assault weapon” because it has a bayonet lug. In what bizzaro world are “drive-by bayonettings” a serious public safety issue?

        Similarly, in such a weird, hypothetical circumstance as what I outlined, telling which door the shot came from would not be so useful as to risk damaging lawful shooters’ hearing. Beside which, whichever side of the office it came from, I’m heading the other way. . .

      2. Yes, and that’s probably the biggest reason snipers like them. As Charlie says below, its a more useful effect in a crowded outdoor setting. Note that the bullet itself makes a supersonic “crack” which (if you’re on the receiving end of the bullet) you’ll hear FIRST, somewhat confusing the picture.

    3. That, at least, is an intellectually honest argument. There are several real world problems with it, though.

      A gun with a 2 liter bottle duct taped on might give you one silent shot, and isn’t really concealable.

      First of all, as already mentioned, rifle silencers don’t actually silence anything, they just turn the sound from deafeningly loud to slightly less than deafeningly loud. Nobody had trouble hearing the shots in Las Vegas. Pistol silencers potentially get you a little closer to “silent”, but in reality the silencers themselves tend to be bulky and large, making them hard to conceal when mounted, mostly nullifying the advantage of a handgun. (That goes 5x for your duct-taped 2l bottle, which at most might give you 1-2 shots). They also won’t fit onto a “normal” gun, they have to be mounted on a gun with a threaded barrel. As already mentioned, criminals right NOW who want to get silencers can get them, but they’re virtually never used in crimes.

      Want a truly silent shot? Just wrap your pistol with a pillow before shooting. Voila, total silence. Admittedly, you can’t really aim this way, but if you’re interested in point-black murder, this way requires negligible expense and preparation.

    1. Once might be overstating the case. My MIL was a WAC during the same period and their one scheduled range day during training was canceled due to a VIP visit or some such. They did get extensive hair and makeup training though. Me, I’m no expert, but I grew up around guns and at least by the time I joined the Army the women had/still have the same range training requirements as everyone else (i.e. not nearly enough to become truly proficient unless you are putting in your own time elsewhere. I swear the Army is the only organization in the world that can take something that is as much fun as shooting and turn it into a biennial PITA slog).

      1. Semper Fi. The Corps does it too, but adds occasional pain and misery. I knew a guy who had a 5.56 NATO case branded into his neck from where it flew into his flak jacket and he dared not fish it out or move, less he get kicked from the range for “Safety Violation.”

        1. I will cop to having once spent the better part of an M9 qual bleeding profusely. My own damned fault, I brain cramped and had my thumb up when I started shooting and got ‘bit’ by the slide. But it was one of those so-sharp-you-never-felt-it slices, so I spent all of tables 2 and 3 trying to figure out where the hell all the dripping blood was coming from before figuring out it was me. Cleaning that was fun.

          1. Oh noes! the evil murder machine has tasted blood! Now it will be insatiable!

            But seriously, did bleeding on it make it shoot better?

          2. Eh, qualified Sharpshooter. I am too lazy/busy with 16 other hobbies to put in the range time I need to bump it to Expert. Didn’t seem to shoot any worse than usual that way though.

      2. A few months ago, I heard an interview with a former Army Special Forces soldier who said something along the lines of “The Army will take your hobbies and make you hate them.” Like skydiving? You’ll need to report at 0300 and wait for five hours while we make a weather call. Like SCUBA diving? We’ll need to drown you first so you know what it feels like. Like hiking? Here, put this 75-pound pack on and go walk 20 miles in the rain. Like rappelling? Do it in a Swiss seat.

        1. ^ This ^

          I still manage to love hiking, but a particular field exercise at Fort Drum sure as hell ruined me for camping forever and ever, which used to be a favorite.

  10. There are a slew of shootings in North Minneapolis every week. The cops know about them because the city installed sensitive microphones for the Shot Spotter computer system (available on-line, check it out). Helps cops find the empty brass faster, I guess. I’m surprised she didn’t mention that as another objection: silencers hinder litter clean-up.

    1. “We have successfully if not inadvertently detected confirmed suppressed gunfire within our existing deployments. Although we have not formally tested the theoretical impact to our system, we intend to do some targeted testing in the near future.

      “We believe we will have various options ranging from increasing our sensor array density to developing software/firmware to address the detection of suppressed gunfire if it were to become a widespread issue.”

      Ralph Clark, CEO of ShotSpotter, quoted in WaPo 3/20/2017

    2. Shot Spotter failed completely in Chicago. Failed to detect some shootings and reported many false positives. If the company donates enough to Chicago pols they might try again, though.

  11. Ironically I had been casting about for new to me sci fy and had looked at a book of hers, not gonna happen now.

    Luckily the new Jed Horn book just came out so I’m good for another day or two.

    1. I was only able to read a page or two of one of her books before setting it down and never picking her up again. Not so bad that I’d throw it unread in the trash; and if I were stuck on a 90 day TDY in the middle of nowhere with no other reading material, well, then I’d read her.

      Now Larry’s stuff, I find that addictive. As in purchase after work, forget to eat dinner, and finish around 3 AM.

  12. So, where was this rant posted? I’d like to hop over there, comment and direct folks here for the truth about this stuff.

    1. This isn’t the only contest for 1000 meter moron she’s entered. If it was one of her own blogs or such, she keeps those scrupulously clean from disagreeable dissenting opinion. Her site, her right, but my appreciation of her fiction has been sadly diminished by her inability to think past a slogan.

      1. Ah, yes – makes ignorant, over the top statement then sticks fingers in ears and babbles ‘lah, lah, lah, I can’t hear you’ like a child. This has become disturbingly familiar.

  13. Dammit Larry, do *not* lobby for anti-loch-monster walls – .45 Broomhandles aren’t cheap and some of us need every dime of PUFF we can scrounge.


    Seriously, back in 2011 Washington State finally legalized the *use* of suppressors (previously, they’d been legal to buy/make/transfer/possess but not actually use); in the run-up and lobbying for this, research was done in the actual rates of crimes using legal cans in WA, and the results were… uh, well, as I recall they couldn’t find any. (Much like the older (1980s?) study of how many crimes were committed with legal automatic weapons, and the numbers being something like two or three – since 1934! – and one of those was a cop who’d been moonlighting as a hitter for his local organized crime folks.)

    But yeah, sure, the Silent Death Machine is widely known to be the most effective criminal/terrorist weapon ever – that’s why all the junk-on-the-bunk pictures going back to ’34 have been positively *awash* with silencers.

    Someone should ask Elizabeth Moon why she’s so dead-set on keeping poor people from having the same access to pillows, potatos and plastic pop bottles as Daddy Warbucks & Co. have had since forever…

  14. Dammit, Larry, now here’s another SF author I can’t in good conscience read anymore.

    “Yes, they really want us all dead…they really want to make it easier for their right wing goons to shoot us and not be heard doing so.”

    Wow. Just, frickin’ wow.

  15. “And I can just imagine all those terrorists who’ve been thwarted by the NFA. “Oh no! I have not done the proper tax paperwork on my silencer! Abort the mission!” They must be from those same terrorist groups who obey Gun Free Zone signs. ”

    Made me think of Blazing Saddles, “LePetomane Freeway … Someone’s gonna have to go back and get a shitload of dimes!”

    Folks are shocked when I point out that in Europe you’re considered rude if you don’t use a suppressor when on the range and that they are sold over the counter.

  16. Thanks for being 1 of the .001% that actually understands this. I will just be linking people here instead of arguing myself from now on.

  17. All I have to do is tell my local sheriff, “aw shucks, I totally thought he was a cow” and we all have a good laugh.

    All together now…

    ♫ I tied them to my fender and I brought them home somehow:
    ♫ Two game wardens, seven hunters, and a cow!

    1. The law was very firm, it
      took away my permit –
      The worst punishment I ever endured.

      It turned out there was a reason
      Cows were out of season –
      and one of the hunters wasn’t insured….

      1. If you ask me how I do it
        I just say “There’s nothing to it!
        You just stand there lookin’ cute
        And when something moves, you shoot!”
        And there’s ten stuffed heads in my trophy room right now …
        Two game wardens, seven hunters and a pure bred guernsey cow!

          1. Me, too – any place where people can break out into Tom Lehrer, Gilbert & Sullivan and Monty Python is my kind of place. ^_^ (One of my favorite discussions here involved a large number of current/retired high ranking military tough guys talking about how much they liked Jane Austen.)

  18. I ‘spect that Miss Moon(how appropriate) is too bog-ignorant to be aware that most of the European countries(that I’m fairly certain she wants the US to be more like) require suppressors on firearms at ranges and out in the field.
    And IIRC they are pretty inexpensive and you buy them over-the-counter at sporting gods stores.

  19. Larry, where did you find this? I searched Moon’s website and it’s not there, and checking a half dozen search engines didn’t turn it up either. I would like to track it down to see if it’s been removed (hoping for an apology, lol) or see if it’s being hidden from search results.

  20. As some people here already know, I’m very much pro gun control (which is not the same as banning guns, mind you), but this silencer thing is nuts. In fact, it’s a little too insane. Are you sure it’s not a Poe — i.e., a deliberate parody ? I find it difficult to believe that anyone would non-ironically envision redneck death squads. I admit, it’s a great idea for a comic, or perhaps Owen Pitt’s next adventure, but still…

    1. It reminds me of the jaw-droppingest bit of stupid in the AWB.

      Barrel shrouds.

      A safety feature to prevent fires and accidental burns.

      That’s the ONLY reason to have a barrel shroud.

      But some of them were rolled metal with holes and that looks like the scary military machine guns and so they MUST be a kill-increasing part of the gun, right?

      1. I thought the bayonet lug was about equal.

        You say “Yes, but you can actually use that to bayonet someone,” and I rebut “but a vented foregrip lets you keep shooting longer and compensates somewhat for poor marksmanship.”

        Okay, I couldn’t actually type that entire thing without laughing, and now my son is looking at me quizzically.

      2. Barrel shroud water-cooled jacket
        Possibly a mistaken identity from people watching old WWI/WWII movies.

      3. The “logic” behind banning barrel shrouds is that by letting you grab the barrel when firing you can mitigate recoil and therefore maintain a higher rate of fire. That’s the same reason vertical pistol grips (front or rear) were part of the “evil” features. If it helps mitigate recoil its “bad”.

        Note, I’m not saying I agree with this (ie heaven forbid a firearm is designed in an anatomically rational way and/or comfortable to use), only explaining the gun banning rationale.

        IMO bayonet lug ban is intrinsically stupider. I’m holding a 30 round semi-auto rifle, and you’re worried about the fricking bayonet? How many CRIMINAL bayonettings have there been in the entire USA in the last 40 years? My guess is ZERO. As a matter of practice, you can mount OTHER things on that mount including a flashlight or bipod.

    2. My idea of gun control consists of checking to see that you’re not a felon, observing that you don’t appear to be in a rage or an obvious head case, and at least engaging the person in conversation to find why they want a gun and what they intend to do with it. (Which may mean they want a different gun that’s better suited for the purpose they wish to use it for, but Larry probably said that somewhere else already.)

  21. I suspect that this is Ms. Moon in “hard virtue signaling mode”, more than anything else.
    Ya see, once upon a time she got quite crossways with some SJWs at WisCon, and was pretty thoroughly abused by them. Lots of nastiness sent her way – I felt sorry for her.

    But… FWIW, this smells like an attempt to clearly show proper tribal affiliation more than anything, at least to my mind. OK, it could be that yes, she’s significantly less intelligent than I would have believed based on reading her fiction, but I know which of those two things *I* find more likely!

    1. I don’t doubt her intelligence, but she does seem to have a serious and possibly wilful blind spot about political and social conservatives. She has not been afraid to ascribe the worst and most nefarious motives to them, which throws several dozen IQ points over the side on certain issues.

      1. She must live in Austin the liberal enclave in the Hill Country. If you didn’t know that she lives in TX, her non-fiction would suggest that she lives in CA.

          1. No, she lives 30 minutes outside Austin (I’ve been to her house), so yeah, definitely part of the Austin enclave. And she grew up in rural Texas in the 50’s, so there’s probably some overreaction to that, even all these years later. Some of the craziest women I’ve ever met were very bright kids in very backwoods rural places.

  22. Larry:

    I’ve shot clays for decades. I’ve never seen a suppressor on a shotgun.

    Shotguns are loud. But they also have relatively low muzzle velocities.

    Is noise suppression for shotguns even viable if you want to realistically hit a target within 30 yards?


    1. Suppressors for shotguns exist. I don’t know how effective they are.

      Apparently, putting a ridiculously long barrel on a shotgun also reduces the noise quite a bit. I saw some barrel extensions being sold for that purpose a few years back. I think they were called metro barrels or something like that.

    2. I got hyperacusis from shooting a shotgun while wearing ear plugs. I don’t want you to be like me. Put a suppressor on it.

    3. Suppressors generally don’t reduce muzzle velocities. Indeed, they tend to marginally increase it. Suppose it might be different for shotguns for some reason, but I can’t think off the top of my head why.

  23. Run right past the part where moon is a Marine. Having made it through 13 weeks of boot and earned the title doesn’t make one infallible, or any sort of expert on weapons.

    I’ve known plenty of stupid fucking devil dogs, she just happens to be a POG talented in writing fiction.


        1. Imagine having been assigned as a rookie Corporal to Courtesy Patrol with a butter-bar so fresh he’d never even been into the town we’d be patrolling to keep the other Marines from getting TOO drunk and idiotic.

          A boot butter bar from S-2.

          Welcome to my world. In his defense he learned fast and his head was properly torqued onto his neck.

  24. I love using my suppressor at PRS competitions, being able to actually talk with my partner at team matches is valuable. The range officers love suppressors as well, they refer to unsuppressed shooters as savages. Imagine volunteering your weekend to sit in a chair for hours trying to spot impacts on targets while wearing hearing protection and constantly trying to communicate over the bangs and hearing protection.

    Suppressors do have their downside in competition, they heat up quickly and generate mirage between the scope and the target. The suppressors also add weight and length to the end of the barrel. Thankfully PRS is usually 8-12 rounds a stage so you are done shooting right about when the mirage becomes a problem.

    1. I wonder if you could run one with a can shroud. You know, some kind of shield to vent heat more to the sides and not let it swirl directly up past the sight line.

      Hell, they’d hate it. they don’t even want you to have a barrel shroud.

  25. That was a truly expert and well deserved fisking. She is a talented writer, her comments were such a steaming pile of ignorance as she babbled out standard talking point myths about the “firearms industry” funding all pro-gun efforts and that any reduction in anti-gun laws will lead to more violence (e.g. right wing death squads, assassins and terrorists). In fact, it is such a frenetic diatribe that I found myself humming the tune ‘Ya Got Trouble’ from the Music Man.

  26. Hi Larry,

    I have long suggested a different approach. For years, Hollywood has sold the idea of the magical silencer; a 2 inch long can screwed to the muzzle of a gun that can reduce the noise of firing to nothing. We all know that such devices are pure fantasy but I think that we should perform a bit of political jiu-jitsu and use the gun grabbers arguments against them.

    So, any man portable device that can reduce the sound of firing a firearm from greater than 100 decibels to less than 30 decibels measured at 10 feet is a silencer. These will still be regulated as silencers. For the uninitiated, 30 decibels is about the sound level of rustling leaves but this is what Hollywood has been showing.

    Devices that do not meet this 30 decibel limit are something else. I’m afraid that I’ve worked in defense industry too long. The first name that popped into my head was Noise Emission Reduction Devices (NERDs). NERDs would not be regulated because they are not silencers.

    Thus, we can piously assure the gun grabbers that silencers are still regulated AND that gun shot locating systems like Shot-Spotter will work just as well should the shooter install a NERD. The gun grabbers could not argue against this without admitting that there are no silencers and Shot Spotter hardly works as it is. We can also tell shooters that we’ve deregulated suppressors by calling them NERDs. 😉


    1. That’s actually a really clever argument. Okay, anything that is movie quiet, you can regulate as silencer. The 99% of cans which aren’t, we can buy them over a counter.

      1. It works until you remember the Left will simply keep amping up the 30 decibel limit each year. Can’t give those f*ckers an inch.

  27. I wish Congress would get off their ass with this. My hearing is about shot too. I have constant ringing 24/7. I want to preserve what little I have left. You are exactly right how annoying hearing protection is, and how it is constantly shifting so that it is functionally USELESS at EXACTLY the wrong time. I grew up shooting and then spent plenty of time in the military shooting as well. My tinnitus keeps me awake some nights. Soon I hope, I want to go shoot my new rifles.

  28. Moon’s statements make no sense. Never, ever, were we allowed on the range (USAF 20 years) without hearing protection and it was explained to us exactly why. Darn near word for word what Larry said BTW. If anyone complained about it, they got written up and then chewed out by their First Sergeant or Flight Commander for being stupid.

    Are her sales down that much?

    1. She writes military-flavored science fiction. This open display of ignorance about guns and bigotry towards those who use them damages her standing among her intended audience; it is thus an error as on a professional level. She _should_ know better. Among her own characters, Lady Cecilia delivered a serious and well-deserved rebuke to Captain Herris Serrano about exactly this kind of thing.

  29. Not being a gun guy myself–though I have shot a few–I didn’t realize suppressors weren’t like you see in James Bond movies. A friend of mine reading one of my books pointed that out to me a few years back, and I had to totally change the scene to make it work. I’m not sure if that information exists somewhere else in your blog, but it’s pretty valuable to those of us who haven’t shot suppressed guns before but want to try to get it right.

    Thanks for the information, Larry. When you teach classes on what people get wrong, suppressors should probably make it on that list. For the longest time, I had no idea Hollywood had totally fooled me.

    1. David,
      FYI, a few years ago a friend of mine who uses suppressed weapons in his day job (he kills bad people before they kill more good people) brought a supressed .22 to my place. I was shocked at how it sounded EXACTLY like a pneumatic nail gun.

      If I heard one, I’d assume light construction lumber work was happening nearby.

      I’m not worried about the neighbors using suppressors. Compound bows and hunting slingshots are much quieter and just as lethal.

      I admit, I’ve never seen anything larger than a .22 suppressed, except for some goofing around I tried as a kid.

      FWIW, my pest killing friend was totally unimpressed with the results of 2 liter soda bottles clamped to any guns he tested.

  30. After pondering, I’d say I usually hear an animal before I see it.

    I have to take a medicine that gives me tinnitus for about ten hours. I make sure to take it the minute I get up so swish-zzzziiip! noises don’t keep me awake all night. You have my sympathy.

  31. Okay, I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade — I’m an avid shooter, have carried a Colt .45 auto of one model or another since I enlisted in the army at 17 (I’m now 71), I now carry 24/7/365 (Colt Officer’s Model) . . . BUT . . . having been associated with the security services here in Israel I have spent a lot of time on the range with them. I just recently observed a demonstration of a Sten gun firing 9mm subsonic ammo on full auto — the only sound I heard from 10 meters away was the sound of the action cycling. I also observed a Walther PPK 9mm kurz (.380 cal.) that had a lock gizmo on it so that it did not function semi-auto — I heard almost nothing from 10 meters away. A Berretta Minx (I think that is the name of the model) in .22 short was fired semi-auto five times and I heard NOTHING. Granted the cans were bigger than most that I’ve seen but they WERE very effective and would have made super assassination weapons. Having said that I’m all for suppressors being legal and easy for someone with no criminal record to get.

    1. So pretty much exactly what I said in the article. Small or specialty round, low velocity, locked action, with a high quality can is how you get movie quiet.

      1. Subsonic 9mm ammo is quite common, in fact most 147gr offerings like Federal HST are subsonic. Which is why I use it — not suppressed, but still easier on the ears than supersonic rounds.

        Other than that small point, Larry’s broader point about supersonic ammunition is exactly right.

      2. I’ve played with an actual Sten 2S. It’s a blowback firing from an open bolt, with barrel ports to keep the rounds subsonic. Also an absolute POS for jamming, overheated like a big dog, but they were cheap cheap cheap at the time, no doubt why Israel made a bunch for their war of independence.

        If you don’t like H&K MPs (I really don’t), a Sten will make you appreciate them a lot more.

  32. She also makes a mistake in punctuation – the parenthesis after “careless irresponsible hunters” has no closing.
    On a lighter note, if there were a multimillion-dollar gun lobby, would you want to get a job with them making common-sense statements? And would there be any product placement in your books? 🙂

  33. Imagine if she had written this derp about bike helmets.

    “People have been riding bicycles for over a hundred years and didn’t need a helmet….”

    1. I’d leave the decision to wear a bike helmet up to the rider (or the parents.) Darwinian selection will sort them out.

  34. Pity. I have enjoyed Elizabeth Moons fiction in the past Deed of Paksanarrion novels, the Serranno books,etc. but I did not know of her appalling ignorance of firearms issues. I saw former Marine officer and thought that’s why she writes so convincingly of the screw ups of military bureaucracies. Bet she and her anti gun buddies really got their knickers in a bunch over Silencercos release of the Maxim 50 , an integrally supressed muzzleloader, legal everywhere without even a form 4473- it is a black powder muzzleloader, after all. ( Offer not valid in the Peoples Republic of California, or the Soviet Socialist States of Massachusetts and New Jersey)

    1. One day, we will liberate the Soviet Socialist Republics of Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and others.

  35. Meh, E. Moon is overrated. All her stories are rape/revenge science fantasy. Reading her is like reading Dick Marcinko – it may be a good read the first time, but all the other books are the same story with the names changed.

    She typifies female troops – scared and ignorant of guns, despite being around them. These are the people who dreaded going to the range twice a year. I knew so many who actively hated guns and despised violence. It’s like they joined the military for the benefits, never considering what the whole purpose of a military is to kill people and break things.

    It’s amusing that she hates guns, while specializing in action sci-fi with lots of big guns shooting raping pirates and rapist slavers in defense of helpless women and children who don’t want to be raped.

    1. I liked her Heris Serrano novels, but the Paksenarrion fantasy novels were so bad I gave up on her. Such an obvious ripoff of someone’s D&D campaign that you could identify the exact paragraphs where Paksenarrion gained a level.

      1. I really liked the original Paksenarrion trilogy; there is very good grasp on training, logistics and small-team tactics. As for D&D similarities – it was intended as an example how paladin should be like, IIRC.

      2. I’m frankly surprised Wizards of the Coast didn’t sue her ass off for plagiarism: The ENTIRE village of Brewersbridge in volumes 2 and 3 was lifted almost verbatim from T1: Village of Hommlet, including the layout of the village and the description of the major NPCs and villains.

        For that matter, Gird was a clone of St Cuthbert of the Cudgel.

        I enjoyed the books, but an awful lot didn’t even have the serial numbers filed off.

  36. Wrong from the first words! So the House is once again trying to sneak through a bill

    So, you “sneak through” a bill by having each side notify its most ardent supporters that the bill will be coming through in a few weeks, in order to rally support for or against it. Or was Ms. Moon complaining that the media was too busy pushes other leftish causes to trumpet hers?

    1. You can “sneak through” a bill if it is a rider to unrelated bill, and.or if it had misleading name, and.or if it is announced on unrelated forum. But I don’t think any of those applies to this bill, isn’t it (not from US).

      1. “But I don’t think any of those applies to this bill, isn’t it (not from US).”

        You’re absolutely right. It’s in a general-purpose sportsmen’s bill and has its own clear heading therein. It’s not hidden in paragraph 96(b) of a bill that’s nominally about creating National Zucchini Day or some such.

        By “sneaking it through” she apparently means “sending it through the normal committee process, placing it on the House floor docket, and listing it on the public Congressional website”.

        Those right-wing death squads are just SUPER-sneaky that way, I guess.

        1. You forgot that it’s not “Sneaking it through” when the leftists and Big State proponents do it.

  37. “Hell, we can make these things out of oil filters. It ain’t rocket science.”
    I can’t quite remember where- I think it was on Mad Mike’s page, but someone had a little gizmo that would turn the average oil filter into a sound suppressor.
    Basically a flanged adapter bushing.

    1. Called a solvent trap adapter fitting. 1/2 x 24 female to 3/4 male pipe threads. Fits standard .22 threaded barrels. Name comes from the legitimate practice of screwing an oil filter on the end of a barrel to capture cleaning solvent. Perfectly legal to own as long as there is no hole in the end of the filter. Should HPA pass I predict a major boom in these fittings. Under current federal law it’s perfectly legal to build a firearm of your very own just so long as it does not violate any NFA restrictions. If suppressors get taken off there should be no reason why making your own for personal use wouldn’t also become legal.
      Of course I am not a lawyer, so take what I say with a dash of salt and verify your own self, and keep in mind that something may very well be perfectly legal federally and still get you arrested by state laws.

  38. Projection figures prominently in her and generally all such liberal screeds. Its Left Wing Death Squads we have to worry about, and they are alresdy operating.

    Antifa, BLM, Occupy Wallstreet, Trump protesters (paid by the same people paying Antifa, and mostly the same actors.

  39. A: I love Elizabeth’s writing
    B: It makes me sad that something she wrote was deemed ILOH fisk-worthy
    C: Having said that, she made her bed and hoo boy was the Correia bomb fun.
    D: Please, oh please, no one tell these people about the company in Vegas that lets you shoot a min-gun out of a helicopter. I haven’t had the chance to do it yet.


  40. These people constantly ignore the fact the criminals don’t obey laws. Whether cans are legal or not, criminals would use them if they were worth the effort for what they’re doing.
    Once again, punish the law abiding for what criminals do.

  41. One thing that Ms. Moon conveniently overlooks is that guns used in crime are over 90% handguns, because it’s hard to conceal a rifle or shotgun; adding a suppressor that had the effect of making a pistol Hollywood-quiet (I have fired an ersatz DeLisle carbine in .45ACP that really WAS Hollywood-quiet, but the suppressor was 3 times as big as the gun, not counting the shoulder stock, and cycling the action was as noisy as any bolt-action rifle) would make it unconcealable.

  42. A million thanks for writing this, Larry! (And for writing in general…)

    Maybe I’m off base here. But Ms. Moon’s words struck me as pandering, not as an actual argument. I find it difficult to imagine that she actually believes what she’s writing. “The House […] really want[s] us all dead”? She can say that with a straight face? I don’t buy it.

    On second thought, I had to go back and re-read that Elizabeth Moon is an author… not a Congresscritter. And according to Wikipedia, she joined USMC as a computer specialist! (Nothing against that — I have a lot of respect for Admiral Grace Hopper. But I wouldn’t ever expect her to command a ship in combat.)

    I also read that she’s 72. It may therefore be too late for her to learn new tricks, more’s the pity.

    1. Please don’t use her as the model for military IT specialists. Some of us are Soldiers* first, IT second. It’s unfortunate that we have to get adequate training on our own time and dime, but we do try to be proficient. I review my bible (the Ranger Handbook that is) on a daily basis to at least *try* to know more about the Profession of Arms.

      * or Marines/Airmen/Sailors.

  43. That whole thing by “Ex-Marine” Lizzie Moon is – indeed – Olympic-Gold-Medal-Grade Stoopid…

    Difficult to imagine someone that “slow” in the thinking-department being able to write anything at all above the old Dick And Jane Basic Reader level.

    1. I thoroughly enjoy your fiskings Mr Correia.
      I’m one of those people that haven’t bought a suppressor strictly because of the hoops you have to jump through.

      OT but how did your long range training go? Did you cover it in a post I missed?

  44. Great post Larry.

    I do want to add something else. Wearing conventional ear protection when shooting will not eliminate ear damage when shooting.

    I damaged my ears when shooting a shotgun wearing ear plugs. Now I have not only tinnitus, but, even worse, hyperacusis. Hyperacusis is a horrific disease where a person’s tolerance to sound radically decreases. Since 2012 I have been suffering from bouts of disabling ear pain.

    The only way to completely protect your ears is a suppressor plus plugs plus muffs. I am not joking at all. 130 decibels will still cause instant hearing damage, though you probably will not notice it at the time.

  45. These right wing death squads must be constrained by something other than a supply of suppressors
    Oh, c’mon, Larry! They’re restrained by how quickly they have to go back underground every time one of Hill & Bill’s associates dies mysteriously. It takes a loooooong time to get around to the common folk (like Moon) when you have to keep disappearing to the Caribbean every couple of years.

  46. I re-read the Moonie-postie. I challenge you to find one factual sentence. The sarcasm and snark are strong with this one. I think that the Moonie-postie joins a small group of pseudo-factual documents that contain no factual information. That is sort of an accomplishment.

  47. Okay, I know I’m late to the party, but is this right wing goon squad hiring?

    They said, “you wanna kill people and not go to jail?”

    I said, “fuck yeah, who don’t?”

    (To paraphrase Action Figure Therapy, back when they were funny, before they had their social justice meltdown.)

    1. I sometimes get the impression that we’re seen as part of the right wing goon squad by default simply because we believe in the right ro self defense, exercise the right, and have the temerity to not let the left’s ‘antifa’ goons kill us all. How dare we resist them, they have declared we’re evil and we should die on demand in their fantasyland delusions!

      1. Democrats have been pushing gun control over the general population since the end of Reconstruction. People willfully do not remember that Jim Crow/Segregation was explicitly pro Democrat and anti Republican. The political killings were of Carpetbaggers, Scalawags, and the Freedmen’s Bureau, all Republican. Republican interest in self defense is tied to that.

        Add right wing sympathy to the likes of Pinochet.

  48. I’ve tried a different approach to the argument, which of course got little response. The premise is that a hunter who has a suppressor and doesn’t need earplugs is more likely to hear someone walking down the forest trail in the middle of hunting season without any orange on and thus not accidentally shoot the idiot by accident.

      1. Because he is so tasty, that’s why! I got to watch someone absolutely meltdown after I said that in college once. Hee Hee!

  49. I already understood about suppressors, but I didn’t know Elizabeth Moon was so dishonest. Okay, she writes fiction, and I’ll consider her screed on suppressors as just more fiction. But I don’t have to ever read or buy her books again.

  50. Our department had a suppressed .22 to deal with dangerous dogs. That sucker was silent with the right ammo. But if I were a hit man I’d use it to club someone over the head. Because it was every bad point Larry brought up and so underpowered it was useless at any distance.

  51. E. Moon is not a stupid woman. Her books clearly indicate she is knowledgeable about firearms. Her problem is that she is a Lefty True Believer. Emphasis on Believer.

    The Loony Left is a belief system, like any religion. Articles of Faith are not to be questioned in some/most religions, especially HER chosen one, lest one be excommunicated from the other Believers. Facts are not required, and often get in the way, so they are accorded no value.

    An outsider questioning her faith will not be well regarded. In fact, the typical response of others in her position will be screeching invective aimed at the “inquisitor” in a personal manner. Getting through to these people is nearly impossible. How often do people change their religious beliefs? Almost never.

    I’m very disappointed in her, though. I like her books, but I doubt I will be spending any more of my money on her writing. I see no reason to support those on the Left, which has been working so hard to destroy this nation, and has done so much damage to the world during the past century. Talent is one thing. Morality is more important, and is singularly lacking on the Left.

    I’m really getting tired of finding out how many entertainers are Loonytunes. Such a high percentage seem to be in that category in some matter. Very depressing.

    1. The cray-cray is definitely strong with this one. I notice that she’s also blaming “Trump” for the Jones Act, supposedly “to protect profits of some US shipping companies.”

      A 93-year-old law, passed under Woodrow Friggin’ Wilson, is totally “Trump’s” fault. Right. You betcha.

      Of course, now that Trump has suspended the Jones Act with respect to Puerto Rico, Moon has apologized, right?

      Like fun she has.

  52. How does a Marine, even if they were the rankest pogue bait, avoid range quals? Is the USMC too butch to use hearing protection on the range?

  53. Speaking of supressors, I just got a .300 BLK upper this week and have enjoyed shooting it, and might even bring it as a bush/backup deer rifle, though my M1A serves admirably as a deer gun.

    I plan to eventually supress it as a HD rifle.

    Any opinion on the .300 BLK Larry? Love it? Hate it? Don’t see its point?

    Seeing as you’ve forgotten more than I know about rifles, especially evil black ones.

    1. Keep in mind this was 1968. An IT specialist back then keep the card boxes in order and probably qualified once. Since a room was needed to house a single computer, they probably never left the US.

        1. I was too young to shoot then, but in the 70s, it was these massive headphones that always got bumped out of place if you hunched your shoulders too high or turned your head too fast.

  54. “|The law regulating them dates back to the 1930s (the National Firearms Act) and it doesn’t make a lick of sense. The NFA is like the poster child for silly pointless government inefficiency. ”

    I really want A Thing. That thing being a “Buntline” style SAA revolved with a screw-on stock, because Lee Van Cleef’s Colonel Mortimer in For A Few Dollars More is approximately the coolest thing ever seen in a Western.

    The problem is the NFA. It is the crouching demon toad god Tsa-Thoggua of regulations, full of a baleful idiot malevolence, to which wild animals hoot and scream and offer sacrifice when forgotten by man.

    See, if you screw a butt onto an 1800s single-action port-loading revolver, the NFA believes that it becomes a Short Barreled Rifle, a thing which every utterance about approaches a Killing Word, a sorcelling rod for Dark Murder Aethyrs. In the eyes of the NFA, attaching a stock makes the pistol into a rifle, and taking the stock back off again will transmute it into a pistol again… except surprise! That which has once been a rifle suddenly becomes illegal – because it’s illegal to shorten a rifle that much.

    That’s even if the attachment of the stock didn’t get you into trouble in the first place by creating a sorcelling rod, er, rifle, that was too short to be a proper rifle. And, if I’m remembering correctly, the two acceptable lengths (pistol to rifle, rifle to pistol) are *differen*.

    To gaze into any part of the NFA is to go mad. There was an ostensible purpose for *some* of the foolishness *in that paragraph* once – and that was that the Feds believed they were going to be able to substantially limit pistol ownership and would simultaneously face great dangers from HIGH CAPACITY!!! rifles and HIGH POWER!!! rifles chopped down to fit under an overcoat. Well, gosh, that’s still such a terrible threat I Can’t Even.

    As to Moon, I saw her at a panel with you, Larry, a couple of Dragon Cons back, and while the chip on her shoulder was Real & Spectacular, I at least had some hopes of reading a different perspective in MilSciF. Well, I got some Serrano, and while I’m not going to bin them or anything, the Scary Xtianists In Space thing kind of cut my appetite for more despite good writing. Which, that taken in and with the above, makes the whole thing kind of sad.

    1. You want the real kicker? US v. Miller in 1939.

      The Federal Government argued, unopposed (in the days before Miranda), that the Second Amendment existed to protect the right of the Individual to Military-style firearms, and ONLY military-style firearms, and therefore regulating non-military style firearms was perfectly OK. And since no known military in the world had anything like a sawn-off shotgun, the NFA 1934 was OK too.

      Today, the standard issue rifle of the US Army has a BBL only two inches longer than your Buntline Special (at 14″), and is select fire. Standard. It has a barrel shroud, bayonet lugs, and all kinds of threaded muzzle options, depending on who you are. Cops (like the ones at the community college I used to attend) had access to 8″ ARs with presumably integrated suppressors. They have the whimsically named “Master key” which is usually a pistol sized chopped down Remington 870.

      Not only is the NFA 1934 incomprehensible crap, but it is incomprehensible crap that now is unconstitutional by the federal government’s own arguments.

      1. I did not know that about US v. Miller. That’s nuts. Also (illuminatingly) 180 degrees reversed from the NO MILITARY GRADE WERPONS WHARGARBL KILLING POWER TOO POWERFUL FOR CIVILIANS so popular today, and this under FDR!

  55. If I really wanted a “silencer” to run around shooting snowflakes my choices would be: about $1,000 for the can, $200 tax stamp, nine months. Or, I could buy a six pack of plastic water bottles for $10 or so, a roll of duct tape (God bless Mr. Duct) and BINGO!

    Does it work as well as a $1,200 investment and nine months? Well, no. But since the $1,200 version doesn’t work as well as this ditz thinks (feels?) it does, what does it matter. My version is quick, light, not particularly intrusive, and will reduce the dBs a tad.

  56. My yard ape asked me why I was laughing, and I told her I was reading a Fisk by the monster hunter author of another after who wanted to ban suppressors. I started to ask her if she understood what a suppressor was but she interrupted me.

    “Of course I know what suppressors are. There are those things you put on guns to bring the sound down so they don’t damage your ears when you fire them. MatPat did a GamreTheory where he showed that all the “walking dead” TV characters would be deaf because they don’t use your protection or suppressors.”

    So I passed her my phone and she put down Monster Hunter Vendetta long enough to enjoy you latest effort. She also finally made the connection that Larry Correia, New Favorite Author was also the “hilarious Melon-baller guy.”

    1. It depends on the quality, how many rounds you put through them, and how hot you get them. Most quality ones will never be abused that hard, and modern ones have replaceable internals.

  57. Big Larry Correia
    Surfing through the Web sites
    Mocking the collectivists
    And fisking them in the head!

    And down came the Moon Fairy
    And *she* said:

    “Big Larry Correia
    I don’t want to see ya
    Mocking the collectivists
    And fisking us in the head!

    “I gave you zero chances,
    So I’ll call individualists ‘goons!'”


    And The International Lord of Hate smiled, and fisked the Hell out of the Moon Fairy’s ramblings, and it was good.

    And the moral of the story is:

    Don’t arouse the ire of the ILoH.

  58. Oh man…this is brutal. And delicious.

    It’s the best way to dismantle the constant barrage of bullshit from the Left about guns. Facts plus vicious mocking!

  59. What Larry said. When he was talking about the tinnitus and hard to heard at cons, I thought for a minute that I had written it.

    Going to rock concerts, working for 22 years around military aircraft and diesel engines, and being a hunter & shooter, those cumulative damages add up.

    Really, Really disappointed in Elizabeth Moon. So disappointed that I think we should take away her label as a Science Fiction writer, and only allow her to sell under the categories Fiction and Fantasy.

  60. ” … but the BATF takes about a YEAR (not a typo) to cash the check, stamp the paper, and mail it back to you …”

    Correction: the BATF cashes your check promptly, within the month. Stamping the paper and mailing it back in the SASE is what takes a year.

  61. You make some good points in here about these suppressors having health benefits for the gun owner. In light of the mass shooting in Las Vegas, I was wondering if you have thoughts on Bump Fire Stocks? Do they have health benefits as well? Are there compelling reasons a gun owner should be able to own a Bump Fire Stock? Are you in line with some Republicans that are investigating more regulations around these devices? Just curious. Thanks!

    1. I think bumpfire stocks are dopey. If you’d given me one for free a month ago I would have laughed and thrown it on my pile of trash gimmicks. The asshole in question would have been more dangerous without them. But as for bans, gun controllers can go to hell.

    2. It’s probably not a good idea to take an obvious troll like you seriously, but I had a few things I wanted to say on this matter anyway, and this struck me as a good excuse:

      Personally, I’m all for banning bump stocks. They’re useless from a self-defense perspective, even in a theoretical breakdown of social order/revolt against the government scenario, and the only reason they’re legal is a pedantic interpretation of existing law that clearly circumvents its intent.

      HOWEVER, the actual bills to ban them that are being floated around in Congress right now are stupid in the extreme, and will only do more harm than good. At first I saw that Feinstein proposed one, and like everything Feinstein proposes, it was dumb as hell, but I thought to myself “in this Congress, there’s no way this thing will have legs. If a ban does happen, it’ll be written by Republicans, and will be much more sensible.”

      Surprise surprise, a Republican just proposed a bill that has the EXACT SAME overly broad wording.

      They’re trying to ban any accessory that can “increase the rate of fire.” That can, and in states like California WILL, be used to ban nearly any modification, from aftermarket triggers with a lower pull weight, to aftermarket springs, or really ANYTHING internal to the gun. Even aftermarket sights and optics could be argued to “increase the rate of fire” by allowing the user to acquire targets more quickly. Guns have one function: To fire rounds. Therefore, nearly ANYTHING you can do to one effects the rate at which it can fire those rounds in SOME way. The wording of this bill amounts to nothing less than a blanket ban on any modification of a gun, period. That defies both the second amendment, and common sense.

      The annoying part of this is that, currently, bump stocks are only legal because machine guns are defined as firing more than one round per ACTION of the trigger. If they simply updated the definition to read one PULL of the trigger, or if they wanna’ get froggy, “one action and/or pull of the trigger,” the things would already be illegal! This would also cover binary triggers, (which are also clearly intended to circumvent the intent of existing law, so I can’t bring myself to care to much, even though those are less silly than bump stocks) but unlike the wording above, there’s no way it could be interpreted by gun-grabbers as a de-facto ban on nearly any gun modification. (And yes, I know you can get the same effect with a rubber band or belt loop and some practice, but those aren’t actual modifications to the gun itself.)

      Long story short, where I’m going with this is that even if you’re like me, and think that banning bump stocks is a good idea in theory, you should do everything in your power to make sure that your Republican Congressmen know that if they support a bill that is worded this way, they will lose their next election.

  62. Great piece Larry.

    Sorry if this has been linked before here but Nate Silver and Joshua Mackey Micah Marshall are fighting over this “road to Damascus” article from an erstwhile 538 journalist who discovered the data didn’t support much gun control policy… it’s quite the echo of Larry’s essay.

  63. I loved her Paksnarrion books. But Holy Buddha on a purple Harley, I had no idea she was this much of a fruitbat. Dear gods and little green fairies. And a former Marine at that. Yikes! What a shame. And kudos to Larry for going up one side and down the other with a chainsaw.

    And oh, yeah, after decades of shooting, six years in the USAF Security Police, 2 years of working on oil rigs in the summers, racing motocross bikes as a kid and 21 years wroking for UPS both on the aircraft ramp and in the bloody damned loud Worldport building in Louisville, well, despite hearing the best hearing protection I could find . . .

    well, if you meet me at a Con somewhere and say “Hi!” don’t be too surprised if I answer with, “Huh? What’d you say?” 😉

  64. How many more people have to go deaf when suppressors are not allowed in the 13 states that doesn’t allow it. The suppressors is not a silencer. The word silence definition of being quiet. Show me a suppressor that is not heard. The politicians of all states have no idea but to run of at the mouth to prevent good use of not having ear damage by reduced sounds in a suppressors. This is a helpful tool. We have people in city and local government and states governors that are mentally paranoid that would allow citizens that are law abiding to have there guns taken away and registrations of firearms to reveal all the records so if ever the states where attacked by a foreign government it would be easy access to disarm all residents that possess firearms legally for hunting for sports target shooting for personal defense of property and personal lives that matter. We need responsible people in government that knows how to perform in government functions that where elected by the people and for the people. Not for politicians and local and federal government. Cars kill more people than guns ,But that drivers that kill are people in cars. So the politicians blame cars and not people. People that are bad and obtain guns for criminal use have guns to kill people. People with guns kill. Put a gun on a table, Tell the gun to kill. Guns don’t kill by itself. Bad people kill. Got it. Sick politicians that are not qualified to be in office attack our constitutional rights to bear arms. The politicians needs to take a 30 day crash course on knowing what guns are for and what it does. At this time the politicians run of at the mouth draw up a legislative bill give it a number and the democrats and republicans will sign any thing with out knowing what the true definition . But making more gun laws does not prevent killing. You can kill with a pencil. You can name anything of a tool that can kill. But the knife that killed does not bring the guilty as criminals. It just stays neutral. So no laws on the use of a knife a legislative bill is not passed. Just over look. The news media always says the people that have gotten killed been at the wrong place at the wrong time. The news media saying people have no rights standing on a corner waiting for a bus. Or waiting for a subway ride in a place where there is always violence. The news media have no rights either. Keep your mouth shut. A empty city for people not allowed would be a ghost city. The news media shows good intelligence. Try again. You got it wrong.

  65. Not to be forgotten are the outdoor shooting ranges. Ask any proprietor how many noise complaints they get from neighbors. It’s only a matter of time before ranges get pressured out of business. Suppressors could reduce much of the “noise pollution”.

  66. Years ago I started wearing BOTH plugs AND muffs at the range. If you accidentally fail with one, for example not putting on your muff before you pull the trigger, you’re still sort of OK. (I don’t regard plugs well.) Somebody else pulls their trigger when you’re still getting ready? Sort of OK with the plugs. They’re intended to always be present, even if they never work that well.

    1. Problem for people like me, much of our shooting time we are communicating as well. As in teaching or being taught. Double plugging is awesome for somethings (and cranking up the volume on the electronic muffs), but I can’t double plug and remain situationally aware enough to run a range.

  67. “Basically I have shot more rounds in a single burst than most of the people I am arguing with have fired in their lifetime.”

    You could have done that with a blunderbuss.

  68. Fabulous post, loved it, that is, nearly all. Please. keep writing, keep educating, keep fighting the good fight. BUT educate yourself OUT of the stereotype of anti-vaxxers realigning our chakras. Stand with a mother over the grave of a child who was healthy until a vaccine, then snark. If you can.

    1. Go to the graveyards from pre-vaccination days and look at all the headstones for kids who never needed to take their shoes off to count how many birthdays they had.

  69. Moon didn’t used to be this delusional, at least not that I remember, but a few years back it seemed like she drank some bad koolaid.

    And wait, Uzis are legal? I hadn’t noticed. I tellya, it’s taking a LONG time to get our share of the Roving Right Wing Death Squads. Where the hell are they?? musta got lost, probably somewhere in Kansas.

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