Metal Blast recently conducted an interview with guitarist Zoltan Bathory of Las Vegas metallers FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Metal Blast: You have been very outspoken in your views regarding gun ownership. Considering the type of rhetoric that often comes from the pro-gun side, do you think that there's a threat of the government taking away the guns?
Zoltan: There are 400 million guns on the streets; it's not economically feasible to collect them and the billions of rounds of ammo. You just can't! There are just not enough people or facilities. Even if people were to give up their guns (which they won't); what do you do with them? How do you dispose them? This is a pipe dream. Anybody that comes into the gun debate cannot simply start with the fictitious idea of just getting rid of the guns. Why start with something that is logistically impossible? Something that would be possible is education about guns.
Metal Blast: I get the idea of people owning guns, as a way to defend themselves, although I understand that the motivation behind the Second Amendment is not hunting deer but hunting tyrants.
Zoltan: Yes. The Second Amendment makes all the other ones possible. But let's extend this; it's not just about the rights that are given to you by a piece of paper. When your life is in actual danger, you don't care about any paper; you will just defend your life no matter what it takes. It's about defending yourself and your family. You should be able to do that. Some people say that owning a gun is uncivilized and brute, but we can look at that issue from a completely different perspective; maybe gun ownership actually made us more civilized, since guns act as equalizers. All of a sudden a physically superior person cannot simply abuse a weaker one, since the gun will act as a deterrent.
Metal Blast: Since you mentioned education; do you think that there should be a limitation on the Second Amendment that would require people to learn how to operate a gun properly before they can get it?
Zoltan: I have a different opinion on this issue than a lot of gun owners. In my opinion, and I know that it could be extremely unpopular with some of my fellow NRA members, yes, you should pass a course, and, yes, all guns should be registered. The gun owner's fear is that if the government knows who has guns then they will be able to come and collect them. However, and as I said before, that would simply be an unfeasible task. They simply don't have the infrastructure to do that. Having said that, however, if all guns have to be registered, then the Second Amendment should truly be unfuckwithable. Of course, I probably don't need a fully automatic weapon, a bazooka or a tank [Laughs] you have to draw a line, since things can get a little extreme. I think that this plan, despite probably being an unpopular idea, could solve some of the issues. Registration would also make it easier to track weapons if they are stolen.
Metal Blast: Well, we do know that the majority of guns that are used in crimes were, at some point, purchased legally.
Zoltan: If every gun has to be registered, and you're caught with a gun that isn't registered, then you'll be committing an offense; it's as simple as that. My point, however, is that you wouldn't need an unregistered gun IF you CAN own ANY gun legally, something that would only work if the Second Amendment stays etched in stone.
Metal Blast: To clarify, what's the difference between semi-automatic and automatic?
Zoltan: Automatic fire is where the gun shoots as long as you are pressing the trigger. In the case of a semi-auto, on the other hand, when you press the trigger, it fires only one bullet, but the gun chambers another round ready to be fired. Here the argument ends up being about magazine capacity, but that's ridiculous, since you can change a magazine in a few seconds anyway. As a sign of how misguided and twisted the debate is, consider this: they attack the AR-15 which is a .556 caliber, much smaller than a 9mm pistol, and much smaller than a 45. If you get shot with an AR-15 rifle, and the bullet doesn't go to your head or your heart, you will live; I would have to shoot you multiple times, deliberately trying to kill you.
Metal Blast: Why do you think there is a big opposition to registration?
Zoltan: There is some paranoia, with people wondering why their government should know what they have, since they think that then the government will be able to come and take them. There's also the fear as to whether the government would be able to keep this information confidential.
Metal Blast: As a member of the NRA, do you encounter people who are too much in the extreme?
Zoltan: Every crowd has a couple of idiots. One violent football fan doesn't make all the others hooligans. I hear ridiculous arguments on both ends. On the anti-gun side it's often glaringly obvious that, from a technical point of view, they don't even know what they're talking about; on the gun owners' side there are also ridiculous arguments that don't help the case at all. Still, regardless of the extremes that we can find on both sides, I'm sure that there is a common ground where all of us could agree. The problem is that what we see right now are just some guys who have no fucking idea, like Piers Morgan…
Metal Blast: And Alex Jones!
Zoltan: Exactly! The two extremes…
Metal Blast: Two people and yet less than one brain.
Zoltan: The discussion focuses on the extremes, the guy giving all the wrong reasons why you should have a gun, and then another who has no idea of what the fuck he's talking about fighting with him! If you start talking with the smarter guys who are on both sides of the issue, however, there is an agreement that can be reached.
Read the entire interview at Metal Blast.