Upcoming Events

Galway | Animal Rights

no events match your query!

New Events

Galway

no events posted in last week

User Preferences

  • Language - en | ga
  • text size >>
  • make this your indymedia front page make this your indymedia front page

Blog Feeds

forward

Cedar Lounge
For lefties too stubborn to quit

offsite link What you want to say ? 1st of October, 2014 03:46 Wed Oct 01, 2014 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link ?Peak unravelling?? 21:07 Tue Sep 30, 2014 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Sports Special ? what you want to say? 30th September 2014 14:40 Tue Sep 30, 2014 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Keeping the dial pushed rightwards 12:36 Tue Sep 30, 2014 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Prospects for the further left? 10:30 Tue Sep 30, 2014 | WorldbyStorm

Cedar Lounge >>

Dublin Opinion
Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting

offsite link HOUSING AND THE IRISH STATE 10:48 Tue Sep 30, 2014

offsite link Boomer Times 10:26 Tue Sep 30, 2014

offsite link FALLEN FRUIT 08:26 Mon Sep 29, 2014

offsite link Irish Labour Movement 1880-1924: Lecture Two - New Unionism 09:26 Fri Sep 26, 2014

offsite link Irish Labour Movement 1880-1924: Lecture One - Introduction 09:24 Fri Sep 26, 2014

Dublin Opinion >>

Irish Left Review
Joined up thinking for the Irish Left

offsite link Demanding the Future: The Right2Water and Another Ireland Tue Sep 30, 2014 21:56 | Paul O'Connell

offsite link IBEC?s Myth Debunking is Just Bunk Tue Sep 30, 2014 16:22 | Michael Taft

offsite link Consumerism and Equality Mon Sep 29, 2014 15:47 | Jaime Dixon

offsite link Investment Remains the Key to a Real Recovery Wed Sep 24, 2014 16:31 | Michael Burke

offsite link From Alpha to Omega Podcast #054: Councils Upon Councils Wed Sep 24, 2014 13:28 | Tom O'Brien

Irish Left Review >>

Human Rights in Ireland
www.humanrights.ie

offsite link NASC: Invitation to Tender for Immigration Research Tue Sep 30, 2014 11:24 | Liam Thornton

offsite link Update: Ireland ratifies UN complaints mechanism for children Thu Sep 25, 2014 14:51 | Edel Quinn

offsite link Understanding Children?s Rights: A Training Programme on Children?s Rights and Effective Internati... Mon Sep 22, 2014 17:44 | Edel Quinn

offsite link Conference on EU Counter-Terrorism, Dublin, 13 October Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:36 | Fiona de Londras

offsite link Rooney on Hassan v UK: ?symbiotic approaches?, ?subsequent practices? and amicus curiae Fri Sep 19, 2014 11:13 | GuestPost

Human Rights in Ireland >>

ILLEGAL Guns on sale OPENLY at the Galway Races while Bertie bets on the horses.

category galway | animal rights | press release author Wednesday August 01, 2007 15:27author by Berne Wright - Alliance for Animal Rightsauthor email berniew at esatclear dot ie Report this post to the editors

illegal guns under Berties nose at the Galway Races

ILLEGAL Guns on sale OPENLY at the Galway Races while Bertie bets on the horses.

Illegal firearms in the form of pellet guns with plastic bullets were on sale openly today at the Galway Races. Up to 15 stalls were observed selling three different types of guns from Handgun size to Rifle starting at 15 euro. Others including children were observed selling the illegal items from the back of vans.

‘These guns will no doubt be used to slaughter innocent cats, dogs and birds. The plastic orange bullets could also take a child’s eye out. We are disgusted at the Race organisers who obviously are turning a blind eye to this activity, along with a total disregard for the growing number of cruelty cases and deaths involved in Horse Racing.



Illegal firearms in the form of pellet guns with plastic bullets were on sale openly today at the Galway Races. Up to 15 stalls were observed selling three different types of guns from Handgun size to Rifle starting at 15 euro. Others including children were observed selling the illegal items from the back of vans.

‘These guns will no doubt be used to slaughter innocent cats, dogs and birds. The plastic orange bullets could also take a child’s eye out. We are disgusted at the Race organisers who obviously are turning a blind eye to this activity, along with a total disregard for the growing number of cruelty cases and deaths involved in Horse Racing.

Our members are observing the races and we have a photograph of one with the purchased item.

We have contacted the Mill Street Gardai who are looking into this.

Ph 091538000 Garda Hayes.

Please highlight this disgrace

Bernie Wright,

Press Officer

087 2651720.

author by acidpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 16:05Report this post to the editors

As far as I know pellet guns and most, if not all airsoft rifles are legal in Ireland.

author by d'otherpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 18:18Report this post to the editors

You can buy pellet guns in almost every pound shop and crap store in the country. You'd be luck if they had a strong enough shot to knock over a toy soldier never mind slaughtering a dog.

What exactly are you trying to get at it in this news story? What gauge are these pellet guns? Are they powered by gas canisters or are they the standard BB gun on sale in toy shops.

This post is so fucking hysterical none of that gets through. Photos for instance would have been useful.

author by Tonypublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 18:52Report this post to the editors

Stunningly accurate research into this story by the author.
You're a credit to your profession, Ms. Wright.
Hurray for integrity !!

Except that the guns aren't illegal - their muzzle energy is less than 1 joule, and are therefore quite legal, and in fact are referred to as "toys" by those of us less inclined to hysteria.
Naturally, you were conducting interviews with everyone who purchased one of these toys to ensure that they would in fact be used to "slaughter animals", yes ? Of course you were.

I believe The Sun are recruiting journalists - perhaps you should give them a call. Although you might want to brush up your ethics - they have ever so slightly higher standards than you'd be used to.

Its fortunate that the only people who read your tripe are the same people who share your ridiculously close-minded attitude, and you therefore won't brainwash anyone into accepting your twisted version of reality.

author by Declanpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 18:59Report this post to the editors

I had come to set the story straight but I think the comment above by Tony says it all. The BB guns are completely legal and your entire article is nothing more then lies and misinformation. Please do some research into the subject next time you wish to write about it.

author by Paulpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 19:02Report this post to the editors

Talk about misinformed sensationalist rubbish. If you have a beef with the Horse Racing industry I suggest you concentrate on that rather than look for an "Irish" Sun angle.

author by bulletspublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 19:07Report this post to the editors

Get your facts correct please before
trying to panic the public and waste the GARDAI's time.

These are airsoft taggers used in a sport similar to Paintball.

Airsoft "taggers" are not firearms and not guns.
They are perfectly legal in Ireland to buy without licence OR permission from
the Gardai as long as they have an energy of under 1 Joule.

They do not generate enough energy to penetrate the eye and they
certainly cannot be used to Kill animals. If the plastic BB's are yellow in
colour they are lighter than the standard BB' weight used and are even
more harmless. They cannot be converted to fire real "bullets" either.
Usually the ones sold at Markets/festivals are Low quality ones with even
less energy than a standard one.

~B

author by bulletspublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 19:29Report this post to the editors

Just to add to my last Comments.

I am a "real" firearms Owner and a Shooter.
I also own Airsoft taggers which are NON firearms.

I love shooting but not at anything Living! Paper targets do me fine.
I am also an animal lover and my girlfriend works with the
local Animal welfare group.

People that own real guns are very careful to abide by the law and
are very safety conscious.

People that own Airsoft toys and play the sport are also very careful
as they are wary of the Public having mis-conceptions about the sport.
And its article like this that may damage or harm the publics awareness
of opinions on a perfectly safe/new/fun sport.

So with all that said I reckon I have got a balanced opinion on things
instead of having an extreme view and not being open to other opinions.

~B

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 19:41author email tonymasons at gmail dot comReport this post to the editors

For crying out loud, do some research before you post potentially damaging articles like this.

The pellet guns being sold cannot kill people or animals. I've been shot thousands of times with these and the worst injury I have received is a small red mark on my skin that faded in a few hours. At point blank range, they cannot penetrate the eyeball. This is medically proven in a report prepared for the UK parliament a few years ago. These pellet guns are restricted to a muzzle energy of 1 joule. The energy required to penetrate the eyeball is between 1.35 & 1.7 joules. A tiny bit of research on your part would have uncovered this well established fact. Oh, and as a comparison, paintball markers have a muzzle energy of over 7 joules.

These guns are used all over the world for over 20 years as part of a popular sport similar to paintball. Irresponsible reporting like yours threatens this perfectly safe sport. Shame on you.

author by butch cassidypublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 20:10Report this post to the editors

would you get an electric field on one of those things? If they're legal like you say - why don't we form a militia & do marchies every saturday? Splat guns to the GPO. we'll shew 'em.

author by John O'shea's Left Pegpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 20:24Report this post to the editors

I completely agree with you 100%, as a loyal reader of the Daily Mail i love to be scare mongered and am willing to believe most hyped nonsence. We could really do with your quality form of journalism at the "Mail".

Maybe you could try your hand at some hyped nonsence over immigrants or maybe even a Diana story or two. Your really are a journalist of high moral standards and have done little research, what do we care for facts or research we want to be sucked into the hype. Illegal guns on sale, im outraged!! Maybe tie it in with how it will affect house prices.

BAN IT NOW!!!

Im ringing liveline as i speak, ohh Joe Duffy is going to have a feild day with this! We'll have an army of angry granmothers demanding justice!!

C'mon write for the Daily Mail they'd love you!

well best of luck with the journalism thingie, your quite good.

Related Link: http://www.mailwatch.co.uk
author by splat militiapublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 20:49Report this post to the editors

the photo was taken at the recent Galway air show where as we know the Irish defence forces showed some of their hardward to the kiddies whilst the british air-force dropped a helicpopter door on the onlookers. It is a photo of innocence. It is a photo a child dressed in military combats who may possibly spend quite a few hours thinking he's a soldier & even still smiles when reminded of the day he got to hold a surface-to-air missile launcher & the prosperity such a piece of crockery meant for his city, county and land. Sure it's not just about bottled water. He could end up speaking Peshwari. Bernie might have got some elements of the legal status of such fun items as soft pellet guns wrong. He might have stirred ridicule amongst many who hold his bag of tricks (animal rights) in low esteem.

- but He has got one thing right.

Thank you Bernie. If I could afford it, and if I thought you'd like it - a mafia severed horsehead pillow would be in the post for you.

would this galway kid want a pellet gun at the races?
would this galway kid want a pellet gun at the races?

author by Correctionpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 21:21Report this post to the editors

Cops have confiscated the guns. So you were right Bernie..... they are illegal.

author by Black Shadowpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 22:31Report this post to the editors

These pellet guns are indeed illegal to sell at Markets under the Firearms and Offences Act.
Gardai say a license is needed otherwise they are illegally held weapons subject to prosecution. I have checked with a local Garda Station .They can injure a child if used recklessly . They vary in size from handgun size to rifle size. the posting says various sizes were on sale at the Galway Races so the author is correct.

author by B.Wright.publication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 22:43Report this post to the editors

These pellet guns are indeed illegal to sell at Markets under the Firearms and Offences Act.
Gardai say a license is needed otherwise they are illegally held weapons subject to prosecution. I have checked with 3 seperate Garda Stations including Galway Mill Street, spoke to a Gd. Hayes..They can injure a child if used recklessly . They vary in size from handgun size to rifle size. As the posting says various sizes were on sale at the Galway Races .

author by Educatorpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 22:43Report this post to the editors

Read the 2006 Amendment to the Criminal Justice Act, then come back and retract your statement.

author by Paulpublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 23:17Report this post to the editors

Firstly if these are what are termed as springers firing plastic bb's they are not illegal any device that fires under 1joule is no longer classified as a firearm but as a toy now. Then again I suppose as the Criminal Justice Act 2006 doesn't say what you want you will dismiss it like one of the others who commented above.

Your pathetic attempt at mass hysteria is the sign of a very desperate media trawl to the lower levels of spin that Tony Blair and Alaister Campbell would be proud of. But hey if this saves the race horses, oh wait this has nothing to do with animals but more to do with base self promotion. If the Gardai have indeed confiscated these items it has probably got more to do with the fact that they were sick of you lot tying their phones lines up and not allowing people report real crimes.

Also you said you had a picture. Where is it, c'mon show us the evidence.

author by bulletspublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 23:20Report this post to the editors


FIREARMS ACT (as amended) 1925-2006
Section 1
Definitions and interpretation.
firearm” means—
b) an air gun (including an air rifle and air pistol) with a muzzle energy greater than one joule or any other weapon incorporating a barrel from which any projectile can be discharged with such a muzzle energy,

Again I say check your facts!!!!!!

By Irish law anything under one joule of energy is NOT repeat NOT considered it firearm.

~B

author by o1s1npublication date Wed Aug 01, 2007 23:45Report this post to the editors

I think the old confusion between 'pellet guns' and airsoft is resulting in mixed answers from the Gardai. These are NOT 'pellet guns'. A pellet gun is a firearm which fires a lead shot and is used by target shooters. Also known as an air rifle. It requires a license.

Airsoft on the other hand, doesn't fit into this category. again, just for those who missed, THESE ARE NOT PELLET GUNS. They are 'airsoft guns'. They fire a 6mm plastic ball. That is all. If they fire under 1 joule of power, they do not require a license. They can not kill. They can not maim at all. Saying they do is simply ignorance of physics.

They are used to play a sport similar to paintball. A sport which is actually much safer to play than paintball as the muzzle velocity of the projectiles is much lower.

Anyway, I would comment further, but the idiocy and misinformation of this article doesn't deserve any more of my attention.

author by TMasonspublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 01:59Report this post to the editors

If indeed these legal airsoft toys were confiscated by the Gardai then I hope the owner makes a claim for compensation (Due to lost sales etc). They have been legal since last August so there is no excuse for any Gardai not knowing.

Oh and to those that said they checked with Gardai who confirmed that they were illegal, let me remind you that the Gardai are not legal experts. Their 'opinion' about what is and isn't illegal is irrelevant. Our laws are freely viewable online for all to see. If you want to know what is or isn't illegal, then read the laws or get advice from a solicitor.

author by Rev. Turk - Church of Turkpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 14:58Report this post to the editors

I nearly wet myself reading this, "These guns will no doubt be used to slaughter innocent cats, dogs and birds. The plastic orange bullets could also take a child’s eye out." That's just brillent, I'm going to read all Berne's stuff from now on I can just imagine the furious red face on her as she typed this. Lol.

author by AFAR memberpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 16:31Report this post to the editors

My my, this article really seems to have the shooters all worked up....

Since I was the person who was at the races and who called Bernie Wright in the first place, I suppose I should recount what actually happened at the races yesterday, so here goes...

While waiting for a colleague to arrive I had a browse through the stalls outside entrance C to the stadium, which were selling everything and anything from clothes to bottled water. I was surprised to see, initially, two stalls being run by children which were selling these guns. I then did a quick count of the number of stalls selling the items. Being no expert on guns of any description, I rang Bernie expressing my surprise at seeing this and asking her if they were legal. As we spoke, I noticed two guards approach the stalls in question and confiscate all of the guns. I also overheard them trying to find out who the children were working for. I later questioned another member of the gardai as to the legality of the guns and was told that one had to have a licence to own one and that they were extremely dangerous. He said they had been confiscating them all week but that they kept coming in.

When the guns were confiscated from the two stalls mentioned above, I noticed other stall holders hide the guns which had previously been on display - either by putting them back into vans or cars, or even hiding them under cars. I approached a stall holder asking if he had any to sell. He had none on display, but brought me back to his car showing me the three different sizes/models he had on offer. Another activist later did the same and went through the same process.

The boxes in which these guns came are clearly marked with warnings not to aim at humans or animlas, and carry the following warning "EYE PROTECTION REQUIRED-Always wear eye protection and body protection to prevent injury. Do not fire at hard surfaces to prevent ricochet."

Given these warnings, one could fairly assume the guns to be dangerous, particularly in the hands of children who were buying them with no idea of the potential injuries which could be caused. The assertion by various gardai that they are indeed illegal without a licence, the fact that they were being confiscated, the fact that they were being hidden and sold clandestinely by the stall holders and the fact that the packaging clearly states, in capital letters "MUST BE 18 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER TO PURCHASE", would lead any resonable person to conclude that these guns are indeed illegal (without a licence and for minors) and that Glaway racecourse are guilty of negligence in allowing them to be sold on their premises, particularly by and to children and without licences.

author by Sgt_Majorpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 17:05Report this post to the editors

If the author had half a clue and done some research then she would know she is talking through her arse.

Airsoft is legal in the whole island of Ireland. Without seeing the guns in question, there MAY have been a few G10's which are illegal as they are over the 1J output limit IIRC.

Crap like this brings nothing but fearmongering and misconception. Shame on you woman! Catch a grip of yourself!

author by Paulpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 18:32Report this post to the editors

AFAR firstly calling us shooters is incorrect and shows your ignorance.

Secondally if these devices are what I think they are then the Gardai do not know the law with regard to this area. It has been quoted above so I won't repeat it again. This included unfortunately from our point of view the age of the purchaser. (apparently a photo was taken but we have not seen sight nor sound of it here yet?)

The warnings on the boxes are logical. You'll find warning on powertools not to operate without goggles as you will on certain toys that they are not to be sold to children under x age. Heres a product that is being sold by Smyths toystore that is more than likely more dangerous than these items http://www.toys.ie/product_details.jsp?npc=D08652 can we expect the crusty brigade to be picketing outside. Christ they have to have a warning on microwaves that they are not to be used to dry dogs because some batty granny in the US killed her dog in one, sued and won!!

The fact these devices came with warnings that they shouldn't be fired at animals should be commended by you? As for children buying them they shouldn't but then again it is the parents responsibility to supervise their little ones, if they don't then they are bad parents and blaming others is quite pathetic. The only thing I agree with from the whole situation is that children should not be allow buy these.

Now my largest issue is where from your initial report to Bernie words like Slaughter and Kill came from as it is obvious that these devices are not capable of this at all. I would like to see Bernie post here retracting the inaccuracies that she has uttered in her "press release".

Also it doesn't bode well for your organisation if you go to the Galway races to highlight the "abuse" of race horses that the best press release you can come up with is this.

author by AFAR memberpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 20:40Report this post to the editors

"AFAR firstly calling us shooters is incorrect and shows your ignorance."

Paul, I didn't call YOU anything. I have no idea who you are or whether you are a shooter. it is however clear fromreaction to this issue being raised on various forums that the shooters are well and truly riled. Interesting that someone here tried to claim than only AR activists read anything posted by Bernie when so many are ranting about this article!!!

"Secondally if these devices are what I think they are then the Gardai do not know the law with regard to this area."

You'll have to take that up with them. They WERE confiscating the guns and doing so well before anyone from AFAR had brought it to their attention.

"This included unfortunately from our point of view the age of the purchaser."

The meaning of this is unclear. Please clarify.

"(apparently a photo was taken but we have not seen sight nor sound of it here yet?)"

Photos were indeed taken, by myself, and have been forwarded to various interested parties. Bernie had not yet received them at the time of posting this article, but she knew of their existence.

"certain toys that they are not to be sold to children under x age."

In this case, they should not be sold to children under the specified age, much less be sold BY children as young as about ten, which is what I witnessed yesterday.

"As for children buying them they shouldn't" on this much we agree...

"but then again it is the parents responsibility to supervise their little ones, if they don't then they are bad parents and blaming others is quite pathetic."

Yes it is ultimately the responsibility of all parents to supervise their children, I agree. However, given the fact that these guns were so openly being sold beside things such as water pistols and other inoffensive toys, I think most parents would not even realise the presence of any risk. The racecourse also have a care of duty to visitors on their premises, as does any other business, and this cannot be ignored. Were a child/baby or even an adult to receive a pellet in the eye whilst on the premises (as could easily happen with the sheer number of people milling around), the racecourse would certainly be held responsible. For a parent to assume that toy stalls at the races sell only inoffensive items, is not, in my book, pathetic.

"Now my largest issue is where from your initial report to Bernie words like Slaughter and Kill came from as it is obvious that these devices are not capable of this at all."

From american eye specialist site http://www.richmondeye.com/news00_11.asp i quote the following:

"Injuries resulting from Airsoft gun bullets included corneal abrasions, bleeding into the front part of the eye (hyphema), traumatic dilation of the pupil, tearing of the iris from the wall of the eye, bleeding into the back part of the eye (vitreous hemorrhage), cataract, and tearing of the membrane beneath the retina. In some cases surgery was required to restore vision. Fortunately, most of the eyes retained 20/20 vision after treatment of the injury.

While BB guns are known for the ability to cause severe ocular injury, Airsoft guns are also capable of causing significant injury, which is magnified by their availability of purchase without restriction. The authors of the study suggest that Airsoft guns should be regarded as weapons and not as toys, that safety goggles should be worn, and that age or sale restrictions should be considered. In the United States, some states have passed legislation limiting the sale and importing of these weapons"

Now whilst a human of any age who received such an injury would doubtless have a very good chance of full recovery with the proper treatment, were an animal to receive it, the chances of survival would be seriously limited. Strays aswell as wild animals would no doubt suffer an agonising death from infection as they would receive no treatment. This amounts to killing/slaughter in the most horrific of manners.

"Also it doesn't bode well for your organisation if you go to the Galway races to highlight the "abuse" of race horses that the best press release you can come up with is this."

AFAR members highlight ANY issue involving the abuse of animals. As such, any of us who witness an incident of abuse or a practice which leads to abuse, such as the sale of potentially harmful weapons to minors, will highlight it. In this particular case, I was doubly shocked at the potential for harm to the innocent children who may fall victim to a serious accident.

author by OMGpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 21:30Report this post to the editors

theese "firearms" spoke of are airsoft guns, fireing 6mm yellow/orange balls made of plastic!
they are 100% legal to but IF over the age of 18!

they are mainly harmless, but if waved in public can cause panic, think about it logically, its a replica gun, guns are scary!
for this reason you have to be 18, however kids can get hold of them, while this is no big problem as they cant cause much pain. the ones on sale if onlt 15 euro, you wud be lucky if it looks like a gun and fires more than 10ft!

killing an animal would be an achivement!

im not convinced by this eye thing! i would not personally not like to put it to a test, there is a reason why airsofters wear safety glasses!

author by Just Williampublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 21:34Report this post to the editors

Is childhood to be reduced to compulsory wearing of goggles for any activity that Bernie and her pals deem dangerous? What next - better ban conkers. I mean, a smashed conker could fly anywhere and take the eye out of your head. Or, worse still, injure a passing cat! Jaysus, Bernie's on to something here. Marbles too, hard yokes like that could kill you. For fucks sake get a grip and let kids be kids!

Sadly, this whole nonsense confirms my long held belief that AR activists are so far up their own arses they have long since lost any touch with reality. They do the left no credit at all.

author by Irish Airsoft Player(L_B) - Airsoft Communitypublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 21:57Report this post to the editors

YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU ARE ON ABOUT. These for one are markers not guns and two they, since June 06 are 100% legal unless brandished at people in a way that makes them beleive they are having a real gun pointed at them. We would greatly appreciate if this article would be deleted!

Regards
L_B

author by Paulpublication date Thu Aug 02, 2007 23:27Report this post to the editors

AFAR just as an aside it is strange that you USE exactly the same style of Capitalisation that Bernie uses. I wonder are you the self same person.

Yes I called you ignorant thats because you jumped to conclusions without doing proper research. I am an Airsoft player. The only firearm I have ever fired was a shotgun on a relatives farm when I was in my teens, since then I have never touched a proper firearm and have no inclination to either. Airsoft Players are well and truly annoyed at the mis-information being spread around by people such as you. As I said before the items on sale technically are not illegal and believe it or not it is not illegal to sell them to minors as the law stands at the moment. Personally I and the majority of other airsofters would like these to be limited to over 18's only as in other countries where Airsoft is a more established sport.

You also state a report that you linked to. It bases its finding on 9 cases in Europe and a couple in the states. In Europe there are different rules to here with regard to airsoft. Alot of countries allow 2 joules of velocity and some go up as far as 4 joules. Because this report does not specify the countries of origin of these injuries we will have to presume that they are ones that have different limits to us. The nearest country to us has a same limits that we do and thats the UK. Here is a link to a parliamentary debate which cites the Forensic Science Service a division of the UK Police force stating the following.

"Firearms experts at the Forensic Science Service advise that the lowest power level at which a penetrating injury can occur is at a muzzle energy of about 1 joule, which equates to roughly 0.75 ft lb. Some air guns--those of the type generally referred to as airsoft guns; as my hon. Friend said, that title is something of a misnomer--have muzzle energies of about 0.5 ft lb, which is well below that level. As a result, they do not fit the definition of a firearm and do not come under the control of the Firearms Act. The Forensic Science Service believes that, at those very low power levels, such guns are incapable of penetrating even vulnerable parts of the body, such as the eye--although a direct hit from very close range would cause bruising."

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm199899/cmhan...2.htm

You end your little comment saying a lot of may, might, could etc. I am sure the Gardai could say the same about your protests; that you may cause trouble; you might disrupt an event; you could cause injury to someone there. Can we allow them to legislate to lock your protesters up based on this premise?

author by AFAR memberpublication date Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:19Report this post to the editors

Nope, I'm not. Any resemblence in style of capitalization is coincidental. Bernie is in Dublin, I'm in Galway (hence my presence at the races while she was posting this article). Neither of us, have the power of bilocation, handy and all as it would be. But if it suits you to believe we are one and the same, go ahead...

My reference to shooters seems to have been misunderstood. To clarify, I have no problem with adults using airsoft guns responsibly within a controlled environment, as a sport. The only "sports" I have a problem with are the ones which cause injury or death to innocents, including shooters who go blasting the life out of animals. I did not refer to you as a shooter.

I DO however, have a major problem with these things being sold by and to children, at the Galway races or anywhere else. You have said yourself that this ought not to happen, and on this we would appear to agree.

"You end your little comment saying a lot of may, might, could etc. I am sure the Gardai could say the same about your protests; that you may cause trouble; you might disrupt an event; you could cause injury to someone there. Can we allow them to legislate to lock your protesters up based on this premise?"

Now your comments are becoming ridiculous, to be frank. The use of the modal verbs may, might or could in my comment indicates that the possible outcomes of children having these guns are just that - possible. Nowhere did I say that every child who gets their hands on one will definately injure their playmates, stray animals etc. But it does remain a strong possibility that some of them will, particularly given experiences in other countries and the fact that kids are kids, and often have little or no concept of the dangers inherent in some forms of play. AFAR, on the other hand, have never caused trouble at a demo and have certainly never injured anyone. If possible, we request a police presence for our own protection, although it is up to them whether they come or not. So there is absolutely no reason to surmise that we would cause trouble at any protest. As for legislating to lock people up, you are really going over the top. Nobody here called for airsoft players to be locked up... now who is being hysterical...???

I have, as I said, no problem with adults like yourself using airsoft guns as a form of entertainment which harms nobody. I was even tempted to go paintballing myself once, years ago, until I saw the pain suffered by my gang of friends who went, and the bloody great welts they had all over them! Not my idea of fun, but thats personal. So long as you aren't harming any innocent life of any kind, go ahead and have your fun! But there is a big big difference between you and your friends heading out for a game of airsoft and ten year olds buying and selling the guns from stalls/backs of vans/underneath cars at a festival, with no adult supervision, no idea of the danger and no sight nor sound of goggles or other recommended protective clothing.. Common sense would lead anyone to this conclusion.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:30Report this post to the editors

Any photos taken at all! If there were the Boul Bernie and CO would be triumphlising these all over their websites and national media as well.But it is now Three days of this post and still no pics..
Amazing still that not one of these people thought to buy one of these "illegal guns" to add weight to their arguement???
So come on Antis prove me wrong..... Put these photos on this topic that you claim to have here on this board by Monday evening.Or retract the arguement and post and shut up!
Should give you enough time to send the pics over to each other,.
As somone said ,just another purile attempt by Bernie and Co to get more self attention.

author by Michael Ronanpublication date Sat Aug 04, 2007 00:17Report this post to the editors

As an ex-shooter, I have to say I concur with the views of Bernadette Wright and John Tierney in relation to the senseless killing and cruel wounding of wildlife. The guns at the Galway races saga only serves to show how gun-crazy certain elements in this country have become.

I used to shoot. I did it for fifteen years...shot everything that flew or scampered through the fields. I accounted for more pheasants, ducks, and crows than I could ever hope to remember. I shot hundreds of rabbits. I stalked deer and stood proudly over the carcasses of those proud animals that I had brought low with my rifle.

I chucked in the whole rotten habit the day I looked into the eyes of a frightened baby rabbit that I had wounded. The poor thing was terified, panting, its eyes bulging. Finish the f....ng thing off, a big fellow beside me bawled. And I did...blew it to bits.

I sawed my gun in two that evening and never pointed a firearm at an animal or bird since. My daughter has a pet rabbit and I never can look at her playing with it without suffering flashbacks to my shooting days.

Look, shooting is basically a jerk-off. It's a macho form of masterbation that some men need to retain a balance in their lives. I've seen guys literally..I'm soryy if this offends...relieving themselves over mutilated carcasses. Thet get a rush from killing something that only five minutes before was frolicing in the meadow or wheelwheeling across the sky. They need to kill and to cause pain to relieve their own pain and cpmpensate for all sorts of problems and hangups. It's just a pity that so many innocent creatures have to suffer to keep some of us on the straight and narrow.

There was a time when I have agreed with bloggers like the "Rear Gunner from Clare" and "Sabwatch". Right now, I'd like to see Bernadette Wright on the fast track to sainthood. If animals have a Heaven, and I think there is one for them, then this compassionate lady can look forward to a bliss that can only be imagined. She and people like her are angels in human form. I thank her for the example she's given...there are many other shooters who, as in my own case, might be converted away from the bang bang habit if the message goes out loud and clear that tormening wildlife for fun is WRONG WRONG WRONG.

I hope the Galway Races victory for Bernadette is the just the first of many...the begining of the great liberation for our furred and feathered friends. Shooters, I was one of you...listen to me..THROW away your Guns...appreciate nature...smell the roses and stop the cruelty.

-Michael Ronan

author by AFAR memberpublication date Mon Aug 06, 2007 08:51Report this post to the editors

Here is one of the smaller guns which were being sold.

On sale at the Galway races
On sale at the Galway races

author by Ppublication date Tue Aug 07, 2007 05:26Report this post to the editors

Hey man i understand what you're talking about, and i also think cruelty to animals is wrong.

However you're talking about yourself doing some hunting ages back, with real gun and firearms. What airsofters are using right now are replicas and should not be called guns.

For me i think airsoft could be a safe sport when handled by people who are responsible, i believe children should not have the right to own them, and if there are children under teh age of 18 buying these replicas, and shooting each other with it, well its not the airsofters who have to pay the price for trying to enjoy their sport. Instead it should be the parents who should be blamed for not looking after their children, and the price they pay is having their children injuring themselves over toys they should not have even purchased. Parents are not the only one to blame i think, shops selling these replicas should also be blamed for selling replicas to children.

If the government made this sport legal, then they must have believed that airsofters are reliable and responsible to abide by the rules. The only problem that the government can't stop is children buying these replicas. I already explained this point above. but anyway thats what i think.

I myself is an airsofter, and i abide by the rules and law really closely, and when i see children handeling these airsoft replicas i tell them that its wrong, but then again last time i did that some kid shot me in the back when i walked off..... maybe its because i am chinese....

Anyway all i want to say is airsoft is safe under responsible players, and there won't be so much fuss if parents pay more attention to their children's life, and for sellers to stop selling replicas to children.

author by Anti_Indy_Bullyingpublication date Wed Aug 08, 2007 23:02Report this post to the editors

This thread was just an excuse for a bunch of people to have a cheap shot (sic) at bernie wright.
nobody is perfect but bernie, at least, tries to be a voice for the truly voiceless. Why do you people hate her so much? Animal rights, like nothing else, stirs up so much vitriol. Why is that?

And we all make mistakes. So what if she picked the wrong topic to post about on this occasion. I can see her heart was in the right place and she meant well. And the cops whose job it is to know what is lawful, got it wrong too so it was an easy mistake to make.

There is too much violence in our society and on our tvs. Is being against the glorification of guns such a bad thing?

Leave her alone.

author by TMasonspublication date Tue Aug 14, 2007 18:34Report this post to the editors

Posted by by Anti_Indy_Bullying Wed Aug 08, 2007 23:02
This thread was just an excuse for a bunch of people to have a cheap shot (sic) at bernie wright.
nobody is perfect but bernie, at least, tries to be a voice for the truly voiceless. Why do you people hate her so much? Animal rights, like nothing else, stirs up so much vitriol. Why is that?

And we all make mistakes. So what if she picked the wrong topic to post about on this occasion. I can see her heart was in the right place and she meant well. And the cops whose job it is to know what is lawful, got it wrong too so it was an easy mistake to make.

There is too much violence in our society and on our tvs. Is being against the glorification of guns such a bad thing?

Leave her alone.

================

Bernie's post damages our sport. Bernie made no attempt at research, and posted without any consideration for those who play airsoft. Her post also insinuates that these airsoft guns would only be used to harm people and animals. There was no mention of their use as part of a legal and very safe sport (less chance of injuries that soccer, hurling etc). Her article was very much one sided and sensationalist. THAT is why we are having a go at her. It has nothing to do with her animal rights campaigning.

From reading the comments by AFAR member, it would seems that Bernie's article didnt even accurately cover the true events that led to the article being posted. It was a very poor article, and hopefully these comments will teach Bernie to be more careful about what she posts in future.

We (the majority of airsofters) are very much against the use of airsoft guns in harming animals or humans. We very much would like to ban their sale to under-18's. We know from experience at international airsoft sites that children aged 11 and up CAN handle them safely at official airsoft sites and under strict adult supervision. But we also are aware that if left on their own, many children of this age could create dangerous situations. We are 100% behind child and animal safety. We don't want anyone to be hurt. But we also don't want our sport banned because of poor articles that spread lies and one-side half thruths to the public. We have nothing to hide regarding airsoft. All we ask is that we be represented fairly in any article about airsoft.

author by tjpublication date Wed Aug 15, 2007 01:06Report this post to the editors

"We (the majority of airsofters) are very much against the use of airsoft guns in harming animals or humans. We very much would like to ban their sale to under-18's. We know from experience at international airsoft sites that children aged 11 and up CAN handle them safely at official airsoft sites and under strict adult supervision. But we also are aware that if left on their own, many children of this age could create dangerous situations. We are 100% behind child and animal safety. We don't want anyone to be hurt."

Hold it a second.......haven't the airsofties been telling ad nauseum how harmless these guns are
and now you go and say this. If you're telling the truth then Bernie has done us all a great service.
If airsoft guns are as dangerous as you say it is time to consider far more strict control of their sale and possession, even banning their sale altogether.

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 15, 2007 10:14Report this post to the editors

by tj Wed Aug 15, 2007 01:06
"We (the majority of airsofters) are very much against the use of airsoft guns in harming animals or humans. We very much would like to ban their sale to under-18's. We know from experience at international airsoft sites that children aged 11 and up CAN handle them safely at official airsoft sites and under strict adult supervision. But we also are aware that if left on their own, many children of this age could create dangerous situations. We are 100% behind child and animal safety. We don't want anyone to be hurt."

Hold it a second.......haven't the airsofties been telling ad nauseum how harmless these guns are
and now you go and say this. If you're telling the truth then Bernie has done us all a great service.
If airsoft guns are as dangerous as you say it is time to consider far more strict control of their sale and possession, even banning their sale altogether.

=======================

Like all sports equipment, it can be dangerous if used improperly. I don't hear anyone calling for the banning of Darts or Golf. Airsoft guns are sports equipment that are designed to be used by adults, and teenagers under adult supervision. Children using them unsupervised could shoot them at other people or animals. It would not be lethal, and they could NOT 'take out a child's eye', but they can cause a painful injury to a persons eye, albeit a non-permanent injury.

Basically, as a very general rule I don't think younger children ( less than16 years old) are capable of using this equipment safely while on their own. They can't kill or seriously injure anyone, but they can still hurt someone, and possibly cause serious injury to small animals (specifically birds)

We cannot go running around banning everything just because a child or irresponsible teenager/adult can use it to hurt someone, especially when we are talking about non-lethal, non-permanent injuries. We'd have to ban most sports and you'd have to eat your food with your hands since knives and forks would be banned. Now, children don't throw kitchen knives at each other because they know it is dangerous. They need to be taught to be safe around airsoft guns as well. There is no difference.

I'd like to point out that the chances of injury while playing soccer are far greater than with airsoft. I'm not exagerating here. I've been playing airsoft for a year now, and in that time I've seen no serious or permanent injuries at all. Show me another sport where that could be said.

People think that airsoft is incredible dangerous, but it's not. It's just the impression people get because the airsoft guns 'look' dangerous.

Before you pass judgement on a sport you know little about, I would invite you to a Airsoft Skirmish so that you can see first-hand for yourself what it is about. I will even pay your entry fee and airsoft gun rental fee. I will even allow you to shoot me at point blank range a dozen times. (I've been shot 7000-10000 time already)

We are trying to meet people half-way on this. We know without doubt that airsoft is not a dangerous sport. We know that so many other everyday items are far more dangerous and easier/cheaper to get hold of. But we would encourage some legislation that helps address people's concerns.

author by jayzhuspublication date Wed Aug 15, 2007 19:41Report this post to the editors

Yes kids, long before vested and commercial interests paid people to adjust wikipedia entries in their favour (as the current issue of Wired magazine explores see who is editing wikipedia CIA, Diebold etc. http://www.wired.com/politics/onlinerights/news/2007/08...acker ) failed novelists would often accept jobs writing flattering reviews, newspaper letters, circulars & so on, doing their bit to promote. It was a cosy arrangement which lasted from the mid 1950's to some might think the end of the 1980's - when insurance salesmen still collected large cash sums marked in their ledgers & each village or hamlet could count on one registered letter writer who was feared by the Justice of the Peace & Teachta Daila alike.
So you people on the airsoft lobby are offering free sessions & know there are more common everyday items which can cause more damage. I'm sweating, Dr Wittgenstein! Let me see you give me a free class but I can still get everyday items cheaper.......hmmmm..........¿who is going to pay me to play with the garden strimmer? you know beyond a doubt that these toys pose no danger (When used responsibly of course which means you put on goggles & who knows pad your gussets with polystyrene foam) yet there are other everyday items which cause more danger.......hmmmmm.......I'm palpitating, Dr Russell - one one hand of your smarmingly reasonable guff is the proposition that less than zero is worse whilst on the other the proposition more than zero is worse.........'tis a paradox.

But not one really worth entertaining as your zero's weren't true zero's & thus we won't exercise Euler today. I'd just like to know why these things look like real guns? Is there a reason for that or is it just make believe? I'mjust wondering because on another thread there has been an invitation to consider the millenial questions of just war, just weaponry & the ethical living framework of pacifism - & resting my weary head from that I read TMason's blurb- toy guns are no less nor no more dangerous than zero is less than more risky to a unsupervised child or naked eye. we want to play with guns

author by TMasonspublication date Thu Aug 16, 2007 14:56Report this post to the editors

by jayzhus Wed Aug 15, 2007 19:41
Yes kids, long before vested and commercial interests paid people to adjust wikipedia entries in their favour (as the current issue of Wired magazine explores see who is editing wikipedia CIA, Diebold etc. http://www.wired.com/politics/onlinerights/news/2007/08...acker ) failed novelists would often accept jobs writing flattering reviews, newspaper letters, circulars & so on, doing their bit to promote. It was a cosy arrangement which lasted from the mid 1950's to some might think the end of the 1980's - when insurance salesmen still collected large cash sums marked in their ledgers & each village or hamlet could count on one registered letter writer who was feared by the Justice of the Peace & Teachta Daila alike.
So you people on the airsoft lobby are offering free sessions & know there are more common everyday items which can cause more damage. I'm sweating, Dr Wittgenstein! Let me see you give me a free class but I can still get everyday items cheaper.......hmmmm..........¿who is going to pay me to play with the garden strimmer? you know beyond a doubt that these toys pose no danger (When used responsibly of course which means you put on goggles & who knows pad your gussets with polystyrene foam) yet there are other everyday items which cause more danger.......hmmmmm.......I'm palpitating, Dr Russell - one one hand of your smarmingly reasonable guff is the proposition that less than zero is worse whilst on the other the proposition more than zero is worse.........'tis a paradox.

But not one really worth entertaining as your zero's weren't true zero's & thus we won't exercise Euler today. I'd just like to know why these things look like real guns? Is there a reason for that or is it just make believe? I'mjust wondering because on another thread there has been an invitation to consider the millenial questions of just war, just weaponry & the ethical living framework of pacifism - & resting my weary head from that I read TMason's blurb- toy guns are no less nor no more dangerous than zero is less than more risky to a unsupervised child or naked eye. we want to play with guns

==============

Where you drunk or on drugs when you wrote this? It makes very little sense. The only discernable question I can find in this dribble is "I'd just like to know why these things look like real guns? " and I will answer this for you.

Airsoft players have a strong interest in Military Simulation and historical reenactments. In very much the same way Viking or ancient Roman era reenacters like to have equipment that is as realistic as possible, so do we. Many of our players have a fascination with the Vietnam war, World War 1 & 2, etc and spend considerable time and money in recreating the uniforms & equipment used during those wars. It's no different than people where the football shirts of their favourite player or team.

To reiterate my post above, everything can be dangerous if used inproperly and many items are not suitable for children or even teenagers. Airsoft guns are not suitable for younger children and are only suitable to older children/teens when supervised by a responsible adult. Unfortunately, children will get their hands on airsoft guns and more than likely will shoot at other children an animals. This however, is not the fault of Airsoft or the airsoft guns, it is the fault of the childs parents. All we can do is make it illegal and difficult for children to get hold of them (while not impacting an adults ability to buy them). We would welcome any legislation that did this.

author by jayzhuspublication date Thu Aug 16, 2007 17:26Report this post to the editors

Thank you TMasons - you've put it in a nutshell. Your lobby is nothing more than a bunch of want-to-be gunslingers who lack the requisite patriotism or community spirit to join the FCA or TA equivalent.
You know you could have written that in two sentences. Now why should we be assisting you get the last word in or pursuing your voluntary cry for legislation?

I propose a ban on all airsoft toys & gun replicas & hope the authorities will take serious measures against any of your lobby or suppliers.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Thu Aug 16, 2007 22:03Report this post to the editors

Have you any cop on at all??Do you think that all airsofters are just that.There are rakes of FCA and PDF lads play airsoft.???so well done on insulting our troops.

I propose a ban on total nutters being allowed access to the internet. and wasting peoples time answering idiotic posts,and hope the authorthies take this seriously too.

author by TMasonspublication date Fri Aug 17, 2007 13:34Report this post to the editors

Thank you Jayzhus for showing everyonw how narrowminded and ignorant some of the anti-airsoft lobby is. Your unwillingness to meet any compromise or to even acknowledge cold hard facts is typical and was expected. Good luck to you in trying to get airsoft banned. We have 20+ years of trouble-free airsoft behind us (in other countries), and multiple scientic studies to back up our claims that it is safe. Any attempt by ministers to ban our sport would result in legal action to prevent them. And when the facts and history of airsoft is given to the court, it will rule in our favour. Airsoft isn't going anywhere, so get used to the fact. If you are so concerned about it, then work with us to make it as safe as possible instead of ignorantly calling for an outright ban.

author by TMasonspublication date Fri Aug 17, 2007 13:38Report this post to the editors

II forgot to mention in my last post..several of the current airsoft players are members of the Irish Army, the FCA, the Gardai Siochana and various governmental departments.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Fri Aug 17, 2007 19:41Report this post to the editors

By gun fetishists the world over. So - the soft pellet lobby would it seems accept restriction of sales to over 18's (one of the thrusts of this report), but wouldn't in the spirit of people dressing up as vikings, viet cong or nazi soldiers accept their toys looking any less like replica fire-arms. Would they accept their sport being confined to registered places? Would they accept the imposition of a license on their weapons? Probably not. Well done Bernie - not for the first time it seems you have survived the abuse which sabwatch so endearingly described as being pissed on from a pedestal & have given us a gimpse into the world of gun fetishists & war fantasists.

from my warm pretending to be dead splattered hands....

author by MEpublication date Fri Aug 17, 2007 21:54Report this post to the editors

All airsoft guns etc. with a muzzle power of less then 1 joule are fully legal in ireland according to the firearms legislation act 2007

author by YOUpublication date Fri Aug 17, 2007 22:22Report this post to the editors

Beats the crap out of a bow & arrow - slingshot - cap gun or pipebomb and well you know it. You'll be practising one of the safest gun fetishist sports to emerge and will find yourself spending your weekend next to trustworthy FCA and Garda Siochana types who thankfully still don't get to carry real pistols.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:23Report this post to the editors

Bad attempt at irony or college dorm scarcasm.
Yes there restrictions on where airsoft can be played .Just as much as there is a restriction on shooting real firearms in a safe and restricted area. Get it into your thick anti gun heads that these things are toy,toys,toys!They are specifically excluded from the firearms laws for that reason.The only people who have problems with them are fustrated attention seeking Holopohobes like Bernie and you. Go away and get some real problems in your life.

author by Charlton Hestonpublication date Sat Aug 18, 2007 13:44Report this post to the editors

Therefore the guns are not legal under the 2007 firearms act. That little jewel of data was removed last night from the wikipedia entry on legal issues and airsoft firearms section on Ireland http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_issues_in_airsoft#Ir...eland by IP 83.141.99.225 It was their first edit.

Did the guns on sale come with a certificate of muzzle power?
Did the guns come from a manufacturer who has ensured that muzzle power can't be adjusted to over one joule?
Are the guns which are on sale in Ireland clearly marked as toys so that they may not be used as replica firearms in crime?

Please Toy Gun lobby tell us more!

author by SABWATCHpublication date Sat Aug 18, 2007 18:53Report this post to the editors


Is hardly the best thing for infallible quotes is it???
Yes the guns cannot be adjusted to over one joule.Well mabe if you are a super engineer or somthing.THEN you could proably build a Submachine gun out of a heap of pipe,a gob stopper and an old cooker.
Yes they have a little red tip to satisfy holopohobes that they arent nasty real guns.
Not that would stop a criminal using black paint to hide this.So maybe we had better ban all black paint in case somone does somthing naughty.And ban all gun shaped items as well so no one can imitate a real gun either.Going to be a lot of kigs with no thumbs and forefingers then.
Now,may I suggest you climb back into your cotton wool box.You might get broke in the nasty real world.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Sat Aug 18, 2007 22:08Report this post to the editors

Sabwatch, the moment you wrote so insultingly in attack against Bernie "...put yourself on a pedestal and urinate on the pouplation,expect shite to be thrown back at you." you invited attention along with the commercial sector spin doctor "TMasons". We have now learned that under current Irish legislation any firearm of 1 joule or more is illegal. We probably take the joule as being a kilojoule people are so lazy when it comes to the units of energy. Yet when we peruse the commercial sites who sell these "toys" which we have now established are in the hands of FCA & off-duty Gardai alike we don't find mention of joules. Let's add that to our campaign. Now I invite you to scroll up the page and look at the illustrations. In one you will see a child in combats holding a surface to air missile. If you or anyone else in your lobby bothered to search the archive of indymedia ireland you would already have found ample material on both the "right to bear arms" and the problems of replica & real arms in our society. TMasons justifies gun-fetish practice of targetting human beings by FCA (over 18?) and Garda personel in "warfare simulation games" as sport. I beg to differ. Now without explaining either the why or wherefore, I have training in arms & since childhood have handled a variety of devices which are covered badly in the latest legislation. I am delighted that this thread has offered a wider readership chance to consider the oversights of our legislation. In TMason's words "let's meet halfway" -
so here we go -

1) soft-air weapons ought be clearly marked so as not to function as replicas.
2) soft-air manufacturers and their distributors in Ireland ought state how powerful their toys are in joules &ensure through muzzle design that they may not be enhanced.
3) soft-air weapon holders ought be named on a public register.
4) soft-air weapon sales ought only happen at selected sports or hunting outlets and soft-air weapons ought be treated in the same way as gundog training launchers.
5) the state ought ensure that soft-air weapons that do not meet these criteria are impounded and the owners prosecuted under the Firearms Act.

Lastly, a toy is a toy as we all know, it may be as poisonous as the many millions of Mattel dolls, as dangerous as the garden strimmer or as harmless as the whip in a dominatrix' hand. Quite right, we blame the parents for their blythe disregard for violence & irresponsibilty as much as we examine those who play with those "toys" before deciding if we are prepared in the long term to allow lattitude in compliance with the law.

It's now about time you "Irish air-soft people" got a website together. & I would also suggest changing your language too. TMasons has never been shot at point-blank range. has he? Now up the page we were all offered a free session, a chance to meet the "lads" -
where & when? will it be high noon?

author by Jacqueline Fallonpublication date Mon Aug 20, 2007 14:27Report this post to the editors

I doubt Fianna Fáil would have any objection to these pellet guns being sold at the Galway races of whatever type, after all they would not have got where they are today only for the use of far more lethal guns on fellow Irish citizens. After all, not unlike Charlton Heston, Willie O'Dea is quite fond of posing and having his photo taken with his assortment of tanks and guns, no doubt he probably wandered over to the stall to add a few to his private collection. Was the 'child' you saw handing out the guns out from the back of a van wearing a moustache?

author by TMasonspublication date Tue Aug 21, 2007 16:07Report this post to the editors

So we go back to Leaving Cert Higher Maths - does a Garda know his Joules from his Calories?
by charlton heston Sat Aug 18, 2007 22:08
In TMason's words "let's meet halfway" -
so here we go -

1) soft-air weapons ought be clearly marked so as not to function as replicas.
2) soft-air manufacturers and their distributors in Ireland ought state how powerful their toys are in joules &ensure through muzzle design that they may not be enhanced.
3) soft-air weapon holders ought be named on a public register.
4) soft-air weapon sales ought only happen at selected sports or hunting outlets and soft-air weapons ought be treated in the same way as gundog training launchers.
5) the state ought ensure that soft-air weapons that do not meet these criteria are impounded and the owners prosecuted under the Firearms Act.

Lastly, a toy is a toy as we all know, it may be as poisonous as the many millions of Mattel dolls, as dangerous as the garden strimmer or as harmless as the whip in a dominatrix' hand. Quite right, we blame the parents for their blythe disregard for violence & irresponsibilty as much as we examine those who play with those "toys" before deciding if we are prepared in the long term to allow lattitude in compliance with the law.

It's now about time you "Irish air-soft people" got a website together. & I would also suggest changing your language too. TMasons has never been shot at point-blank range. has he? Now up the page we were all offered a free session, a chance to meet the "lads" -
where & when? will it be high noon?

==============
1. Not sure what you mean by this. Do you mean the airsoft guns (they are not weapons by the way) should be marked with a orange tip or something? That has been tried in the US. Criminals just painted their real guns with orange tips so they could carry them around in public without the cops being called. In Canada, airsoft guns are all made from a clear plastic...hasn't stopped the criminals from using a metalic spray paint on them to make them look real. You can do what you want to the airsoft guns....it won't stop criminal intent. And that is the real problem, not the realism or 'danger' posed by them.
2. This is already done. All (or at least the vast majority) or airsoft retailers do state how powerful they are. Also, all airsoft guns pass through customs and would be siezed if they are over 1 joule. It takes 5 seconds to test the power output using a Chronograph.
3. We are willing to have a register, but not a public one. The reasons for not having a public register are obvious, so I won't go in to that. I'd like to point out that the only people who would sign this register are the responsible, law abiding players. So, in essence, it would serve no useful purpose.
4. Impossible due to the internet. There is no way to prevent anyone from buying an item over the internet. And besides, why should such severe restrictions be needed on a piece of sports equipment that cannot kill or seriously maim? Oh, we are 100% against retail stores selling airsoft guns to kids as some of them currently do. They have been contacted and asked to stop. However, technically they are not breaking the law and most have told us to go to hell. We want the law changed to stop them from selling to kids.
5. Prosecute people under firearms legislation for having a legal piece of sports equipment?? How about golf clubs? Lethal by any standards..lets go arrest all the golf players if they don't abide by the same rules...

We do have a website. There are several actually, but I don't want to see them spammed with the same type of one-sided posts that I have seen here. You can find them yourselves if you wish. They are not hidden. Spam will be deleted quickly from the sites. Legitimate concerns will be discussed openly with no censorship, as has been done before.

We are willing to address legitimate non-emotional concerns of the public and find solutions that do not harm or sport, but at the same time protect the public from any misuse of the equipment. Many people here have already made up their minds that airsoft is dangerous and should be bannned outright. I don't know how these people can ignore scientific fact, or the fact that I am still alive after being shot thousands of times with these 'dangerous guns'.

To answer your question, yes I have been shot at point blank range. Not in the eye, but to other soft areas of the body including the front of the throat, the ear lobes and inner thigh. No blood...no break of the skin.....no emergency surgery....Just a strong sting for a few seconds and a bruise to show for it. Nothing to cry about....a certainly nothing to justify a ban.

If you want to see what this airsoft sport is all about....if you want to see the friendly, safe airsoft community at play, then come to a game. www.hrta.ie every saturday and sunday. (Not many here this saturday due to a large event taking place elsewhere.) Oh, and it's private land, so while you're welcome to come play a game, watch or ask questions, any unacceptable behaviour and you will be removed from the site.

What exactly is it that you have concerns with? Why is it so wrong for a group of responsible people to engage in a safe (yet extreme) sport that harms no one?
Are you concerned that criminals might misuse the airsoft guns? Well they can't actually do much damage with them, and removing the guns does not remove the intent to do wrong by these criminals. They'll just pick up a baseball bat instead (which can be lethal).
Are you concerned that children might harm each other or small animals with this airsoft guns? Well so are we. While not lethal, it's not a good idea to let children play with airsoft sports equipment that can cause quite a bit of pain and suffering to animals and small children. That's why we want sales banned to under 18's. Although to be honest, it's hard to enforce due to the internet. At the end of the day, it's the parents responsibility to ensure their children are playing with items appropriate for their age. Banning Airsoft to stop kids playing with airsoft guns is like using a sledgehammer to hammer in a 1 inch nail. It's overkill.

Why are you so hostile?

Oh, and the wikipedia entry has been hijacked several times by an extremist who keeps insisting that airsoft guns are actually illegal and capable of killing. The wiki mods are being provided with forensic testing results and a copy of the Criminal Justice Bill. They have been asked to lock the wiki entry and ban the user. The same person has made threats against one of the more prominent airsoft players.

Once more thing. I don't like being refered to as some kind of spin doctor. I'm just a member of the public like you. I have actually done my homework, researched airsoft extensively and the plain simply facts are clear to me (and many many others). Airsoft has been around over 20 years. There are no deaths, and less then 500 reported serious eye injuries (all caused by airsoft guns well over 1 joule). Compare that with soccer, golf, baseball, hurling, GAA etc.

This is my last post on the subject. The facts have been presented. They are easily verified with a few mins googling. You can either remain ignorant to the facts and be laughed at by the majority of the public, or you can be reasonable and work WITH us to find solutions to the current problems. The airsoft community is growing rapidly, are we rarely meet anyone who has a serious dislike for airsoft. Airsoft is here to stay. Either help fix the issues or you can continue to rant & rave which will get you nowhere.

Good luck to you, whatever your choice.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Tue Aug 21, 2007 20:52Report this post to the editors

So now it seems TMasons says the wikipedia post has been hijacked by extremists several times. Odd, I can only find a few edits of the entry and most dealt with the inclusion and exclusion of the word "booby". So utter crap there.
It also seems that the inclusion of orange tips on the muzzle in line with legislation in the USA and Canada (where gun fetishists can carry real arms) is unworkable because criminals would paint them black. Gosh - all the more reason to treat your toys as imitation arms.
It seems a public register is unworkable "for obvious reasons" - sorry but they're not that obvious. What are these reasons???
Now as for providing the "wiki mods" with forensic tests? utter utter crap. Wikipedia like Indymedia operates in a transparent way, arguably wikipedia is in fact more transparent than Indymedia which is why I can tell you your "extremist attack" is nonsense. You may put your forensic tests online here or at your "airsoft ireland" site which encourages people to engage in quasi-paramilitary activity or you can simply refer to the agency or institute who are providing those forensic or I believe the proper word would be ballistic tests - let me be specific there are less than 7 such agencies in the Irish state & accordingly those opposed to your gun-fetish (who you want to meet halfway) would engage an independent agency to prove or disprove those findings. Making that bullshit shorter, let me suggest to the readership that no Irish gunfetish club have the resources or inclination to fund a ballistic study of the wide range of firearms offered on sale to the Irish public (either by realworld retail, back of a van or as you very disingenously suggested "internet") and so the constant reference to "one joule" is misleading for the simple reason that we do not possess a list of muzzle or discharge strength of all firearms or projectile bearing instruments (such as emergency sailing flare guns or gun dog training launchers) in this state to ensure full compliance with the current legislation.
That is a serious oversight.

Which brings me to restriction of sale -
How exactly considering your reticence to restrict sale of these firearms do you propose to limit their use and ownership to 18 year olds? There are at present several mechanisms for restricting sale of services and products across the internet - which one would you reject or accept?

So at last you are exposed if not as an utter bullshitter as one who sincerely loves their emergent sport & would defend it against all retractors, but one who unfortuanately is not in full possession of the facts you need to argue your case.
Significantly much of what you've written has contradicted "sabwatch" - & it was the rudeness of "sabwatch" which brought my attention to this issue in the first place.

and at least you wrote in a manner which was lucid & respectful - for that I thank you.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Tue Aug 21, 2007 23:43Report this post to the editors

You just dont want to accept anpother view point do you???
BTW ANYONE with 500 euros can purchase a chronograph and get their local Garda Firearms Officer down to witness wether it is shooting over one joule or disgustimng pendantics like you.Oner Kilo joule.So you are talking utter shit that it is impossible to test these ballistically,and BTW you dont need to bother the govt or gardai about this this is EU law on these toys.So go away and bother the EU if you have a problem with these.
I am glad all you have to worry about some toys.The Gardai and the rest worry about real illegal guns in the hands of criminals,not toys painted in black,white or purple with green stars.

Can you get it into your holophobic head these are toys !!not firearms,as defined so by Irish and EU firearm laws..If you want to bleat on that these are firearms,you are just showing yourself as astubborn fool who wont accept the law does not consider these firearms.BTW WHY dont you accept TMasons offer and go to an airsoft match and maybe LEARN somthing,as you really dont know much about firearms and toys by your last ill informed posts???

author by AFAR menberpublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:54Report this post to the editors

Charlton Heston wrote:

"Did the guns on sale come with a certificate of muzzle power?
Did the guns come from a manufacturer who has ensured that muzzle power can't be adjusted to over one joule?
Are the guns which are on sale in Ireland clearly marked as toys so that they may not be used as replica firearms in crime? "

There was no certificate of power and no mention of joules on the box in which these guns were being sold at the galwat races. Neither was there any mention of the possibility of adjusting them in any way. They are not marked as toys, and no, SABWATCH, there is no red tip either. There is in fact nothing on either the gun or the box to state that it is a replica, so it could easily be used to commit a crime.

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:21Report this post to the editors

1. The wiki entry for Ireland has been modified several times by someone claiming that airsoft is in fact illegal. I don't need to prove it as wikipedia is transparant as you say. I hope it's not you that has been making these edits...

2. I won't bother commenting too much on your statement regarding the airsoft guns in the US and Canada. It's not worth responding to. I'm happy that the majority of people can see boths side of the argument and come to a reasonable conclusion.

3. Regarding the register. Would you want to make yourself a target for any nutcase with a thing against airsoft? (no, I'm not calling you a nutcase). Would you be willing to put your name, address & photograph on a public register? Any person with criminal intent would love that....anyone want to be burgled? A private register available to the Gardai would achieve the same result and we are happy to do this (so long as there is no cost). Licensing is also acceptable so long as it is free (or low cost) and is not as convoluted or hit-n-miss as the current firearms licensing which would be laughable if it wasn't so frustrating.

4. A report was done by the UK Forensic Science Service (who did ballistic testing) which among other things, covered the penetrating power of airsoft guns. Below is an extract. You can find the full report with google...takes about 5 seconds to find.

=====================
The Home Office and the Forensic Science Service considers that the lowest level of muzzle energy capable of inflicting a penetrating wound is one foot pound force (1.35 J): below these power levels, weapons are "incapable of penetrating even vulnerable parts of the body, such as the eye".[54] However, more recent analysis by the Forensic Science Agency for Northern Ireland has indicated that a more reasonable assessment of the minimum muzzle energy required to inflict a penetrating wound lies between 2.2 and 3.0 ft·lbf (3 to 4 J).[55] We will deal more fully with this discrepancy at paragraphs 123 to 130 below."

The power level at and above which an air weapon is considered a firearm in law is presently set at 1 ft·lbf. However, we note above that the Forensic Science Agency of Northern Ireland has more recently assessed the power level at which a barreled weapon is capable of inflicting a lethal wound as between 2.2 and 3 ft·lbf, and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has proposed that the law relating to firearms in Northern Ireland be amended to take this into account.[201]"
=====================

You can also view this: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm199900/cmsel...5.htm (section B) on the same subject. Both official government documents based on cold hard scientific fact.

5. How dare you accuse me or my friends of engaging in quasi-paramilitary activity. How dare you suggest that any of the airsoft websites would encourage this. Provide evidence of this link between airsoft and paramilitary organisations or you leave yourself open to legal prosecution for defamation of character. If anyone wants to see what happens at these airsoft games, then they are free to come to one of the airsoft sites. www.hrta.ie is currently the most popular in Ireland. There is no cost if you just wish to view the games and talk to the players.

6. As stated previously, airsoft retailers do show the power output of the airsoft guns that they sell. However, the standard measurement is given in Feet-per-second (FPS). This is the speed of the bb as it exits the airsoft gun. 1 joule = 328fps using 0.2g bb's. A chronograph costs anywhere from 30 euro to 70 euro and can be used to test the airsoft guns. All airsoft game sites chronograph each airsoft gun before they allow it to be used on site. This ensures that all our airsoft guns are below the legal limit. This is a voluntary action on our part, and it is enforced quite rigorously.

7. Regarding restriction of sale. You can enforce an age restriction in retail shops. However, in practice this is impossible to do online. 99% of online retailers do not require you to prove your age before you buy from them. If you can offer a reasonable method to restrict internet sales to under 18's, I'd be glad to hear it.

8. Lastly, it is not I who am 'bullshitting' as you put it. I have offered evidence for my arguement. I have offered cold hard scientific facts. I have shown a willingness to discuss the issues that airsofters do indeed acknowledge exist with airsoft.

What have you offered? No facts. Just constant attacks on me, my friends and my sport with nothing to back up those attacks. You have made many assumptions which are easily disproved and it is obvious that you have made little attempt to do any research on the subject. I have given you every opportunity to provide some evidence to support your view. You have provided none. You sir, unfortunately come across as an emotional knee-jerk reactionary who is trying nothing more than scaremongering. I wish that you could provide valid arguments to support your points. We could then discuss ways to address these issues and find solutions acceptable to both sides.

So I challenge you. Show me something that PROVES that 1 joule airsoft guns have killed or seriously maimed anyone. Show me something that PROVES that any significant proportion of crime is carried out by people using airsoft guns? Show me anything that PROVES that airsofters are in any way a danger to society.

"sabwatch" I would ask that you please stop posting. Your statements are incorrect and only fuel misunderstanding. The language used in your posts is also not helpful.

For clarification, there is currently no European wide law regarding airsoft. It is considered an issues for local local and different countries in the EU have different laws about what constitutes a firearm. In some countries, this is 2 joules or even higher. Ireland is very much on the low end of the scale and we are happy for it to remain that way.

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:35Report this post to the editors

by AFAR menber Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:54
Charlton Heston wrote:

"Did the guns on sale come with a certificate of muzzle power?
Did the guns come from a manufacturer who has ensured that muzzle power can't be adjusted to over one joule?
Are the guns which are on sale in Ireland clearly marked as toys so that they may not be used as replica firearms in crime? "

There was no certificate of power and no mention of joules on the box in which these guns were being sold at the galwat races. Neither was there any mention of the possibility of adjusting them in any way. They are not marked as toys, and no, SABWATCH, there is no red tip either. There is in fact nothing on either the gun or the box to state that it is a replica, so it could easily be used to commit a crime.

=================
Toys do not need certificate of muzzle power. The power of the airsoft guns can be confirmed with the manufacturer. It is also viewable on dozens of retailer websites.

The muzzle power can be adjusted to over 1 joule. This involves a considerable amount of work and addtional parts. A person would have to strip the gun apart, right down to the gearbox. They would then have to reinforce the gearbox and use a more powerful spring. The shims would usually need upgrading as well. As someone who has done repair work on airsoft guns, I can assure you that it is no easy feat. The airsoft guns are precision instruments that are not designed to be 'taken apart'. Taking them apart, and putting them back together so that they still work, is very hard to do.

Our government (specifically the customs dept) has for some reason decided to class airsoft guns as toys rather than sports equipment. Not something we are too happy about since toys ar efor children and airsoft guns are not suitable for children (except older children under supervision)

And yes AFAR, these guns can be used in crime. That fact is not disputed or hidden. But what happens if you removed airsoft guns from society? Do those same crimes suddenly stop happening? No, unfortunately they don't. If they did, I would support you 100% in getting airsoft banned. The people who commit these crimes do so regardless of the existence of airsoft guns. They use whatever 'weapon' they can get their hands on. At least if they do decide to use airsoft guns, they can't actually harm anyone. In other words, as strange as it sounds. it's actually better for a criminal to use an airsoft gun in a crime rather than some other, lethal weapon such as a knife or bat.

Sorry, but we can't stop criminals being criminals. But if we punish innocent members of society in a vain attempt to hurt the criminal, then the criminal has just won a victory.

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:48Report this post to the editors

Just thought that you might like to see a parts diagram of one of the airsoft gas pistols. Bear in mind that the gas pistols are less complicated and cannot be upgraded.

http://www.unconventional-airsoft.com/gfx/mk23_install_...1.gif

And here is the parts diagram for an Electric Rifle.

http://www.arniesairsoft.co.uk/?filnavn=/reviews/ak47/a...l.htm

I hope it gives some idea of the complexity and how difficult it is to upgrade these airsoft guns. The 5th pic shows the gearbox parts.

Oh, and yes....all of the instructions for the vast majority of airsoft guns are in chineese/mandarin

author by SAWWATCHpublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 12:39Report this post to the editors

Why dont you go and pick on the antis that are trying to do in BOTH our hobbies.???While I use REAL guns,I have nothing but support for you lot with your toy guns.Oh,and langauge..I suppose you dont mind being called a gunfetishist by this gobdaw CHeston do you???
Sorry am sticking around.

author by TMasonspublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 13:02Report this post to the editors

by SAWWATCH Wed Aug 22, 2007 12:39
Why dont you go and pick on the antis that are trying to do in BOTH our hobbies.???While I use REAL guns,I have nothing but support for you lot with your toy guns.Oh,and langauge..I suppose you dont mind being called a gunfetishist by this gobdaw CHeston do you???
Sorry am sticking around.

Not picking on you. Not picking on anyone. There is no point in each side flaming the other. Thanks for your support, but it's best only to post if you are 100% sure about your claims & 'facts'. Posting inaccurate information only provides ammunition (excuse the pun) to the other side...so to speak. Your post come across as quite agressive and in all honesty don't help the situation. Is it your goal to defend airsoft, or just provoke/flame the 'other guys'?

Free country and I can't demand you to stop posting. It was a friendly request.

And no, I don't like the language being used by some of the other posters either. It's quite offensive actually. But calling them names like 'gobdaw' doesn't help...in fact it hurts our position.

I see the 'anti-airsoft" posters as concerned members of the public who are only pointing out some scary faults with the current legislation. They could be more friendly in their opposition, and more willing to compromise though ;-)

author by SABWATCHpublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 20:25Report this post to the editors

No offence meant or taken I hope.
BUT you are beating your head against the wall if you think you can reason with this bunch of holophobes. They belive in only one right opinion..THEIRS.
All guns are Baaaaaad.Baaaaannn them all!!!! The trypical cry of the anti choice holophobic brigade.

Doesnt matter wether it is airsoft or full auto stuff.They are terrified of inaimate objects,and therefore must find some excuse to remove them from the world,so therefore any old excuse,like the children,crime etc is trotted out to scare their audiences.When actually Sigmund Freud,the most misquoted man on this matter,actually stated that an inate fear of inanimate waepons is a sign of a deeply emotionally fustrated and sexually inadquate person.Aggressive yes..damn right and will be so to anyone who is trying to change the way I chose to live.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Wed Aug 22, 2007 20:52Report this post to the editors

More than one person has attempted to draw a line in the sand only to rue the additions. You seem slightly vexed Tmasons & you "sabwatch" seem as rude as ever. Whomever added the confirmation that the guns on sale in Galway which started this thread did not have red tips, were not marked as toys or imitation fire-arms or indeed did not carry information on their muzzle strength is to be applauded.
for those are the very points of contention are they not? & if we read through the whole text we see that members of the "Air-soft" lobby have insisted completely to the contrary. Now at no stage have I suggested that airsoft pellets may cause physical injury or "take an eye out". Instead the thrust of my attack has been the flimsy enforcing of legislation on a gunfetish sport which counts " members of the FCA and Gardai " in its numbers. Read the whole text and tell me I'm wrong.

It is irrelevant if forensic tests in the UK have established the joule strength needed to cause physical injury - what is relevant is those who practise the sport in Ireland (whom we are told include Gardai) have no means of proving their weapons are of less than one joule in compliance with the law - and in all gravity have shown no real efforts to meet their opponents halfway. A number of reasonable suggestions have been made - but these are "unworkable" because a public register would lead to "extremists" (who are non-existent) attacking air-soft off-duty Garda and ransacking their homes for imitation weapons (which are nothing more than toys). hmmmmmmmmm.

Another suggestion then - as I mentioned I have arms training. I very rarely find myself at the firing range, but one acquaintance whom I've had for many years now is a licensed arms dealer and gunsmith who on occassion invites there to keep my eye true to the mark. Of course the society I live in does not have the restrictions on firearms which are presently not being properly enforced in Eire - but has sought to create an atmosphere where gun crime of real or imitative nature is reduced. That means -
1) leave your toys in a secure place & do not take them home if you are scared of your toys being used as criminals as imitation weapons considering you are not prepared to make any effort to mark them as toys or colour them so.
2) petition the manufacturers of your gunfetish toys to change the design. :

I have had more fun playing with a big flouresecent water pistol in the summer months than emptying a clip in a semi-automatic pistol at a target. Would you really object if your toys looked more like toys and less like guns? Oh yes - we've already established that you would. That's where the fetish comes into your sport.

Lastly - what about the free session you were offering Irish residents ??? the hole is open you have the shovel - dig some more....

author by TMasonspublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 11:21Report this post to the editors

As mentioned previously, there are two main ways in which the power of the airsoft guns are controlled.

Firstly, at every location where the sport is played, the owner has a chronograph for testing the power of the airsoft guns. Airsoft guns are tested before they are allowed to be used in the games. Therefore, there is no point in an airsoft player buying an airsoft gun over 1 joule, or attempting to upgrade one. The majority of the airsoft guns shoot 0.2g bb's between 260 and 285 fps (328fps being the legal limit).

Secondly, all Airsoft guns come from China/Taiwan/Hong Kong etc. Therefore, they must pass through Irish customs. If customs find the gun is over 1 joule, then they mark it as a firearm and will withold it. They then contact the buyer who must produce a gun licence/permit before the firearm can be delivered to them. I've seen a case where an airsoft gun chronographed at 331fps and was withheld by customs.

Also, many (not all) of the retailers will remind buyers who purchase airsoft guns over 1 joule, that they will need a licence to import it. Some even refuse to ship such airsoft guns to Ireland as they are firearms here.

Regarding the register, I to have made a reasonable suggestion...a private register available to the Gardai only. But for some reason, you want this to be a public register. Why? What is the benefit? Sorry, but nobody is going to sign up to such a public register as it is open to possible abuse. All citizens have a right to privacy and a public register is a breach of that right. A private register is fine and does the exact same role (albeit quite pointless since airsoft players are not the criminals...it's like getting golf players to sign up in case someone uses a golf club in a crime)

As for extremists, they do exist. We've met them. I had a taxi driver refuse to let me in his car because I was dressed in Camo clothing and carrying a rifle bag. Now, I don't mean that they are running around bombing airsfot sites or anything. I mean that they are quite aggressive in their opposition to airsoft and are unwilling to acknowledge cold hard facts. For example, there was a discussion recently on the Adrian Kennedy Phone show (104fm) about airsoft/airguns/firearms. There was a caller called Mick who insisted that airsoft guns could kill. He insisted that we should all be arrested because by shooting at each other we were committing assault. He kept interrupting the pro-airsofters when they spoke and frequently got quite angry, refusing to accept any difference between airsoft guns, airguns and real firearms.

Regarding making the airsoft guns look 'less real' so that they can be distinguish from real guns...well what do you propose? As mentioned before, there have been many attempts to do this in other countries. Any modifications can be undone by criminals. Red/Orange tips can be scrapped off or painted over. Clear plastic guns can be spray painted. The fact that the airsoft guns kinda look real does not cause crime. Most people are not familiar with the different variety of real guns, so you could probably spray paint a childs water pistol with metalic paint and use it in an armed robbery. Again, it's not the equipment that is the problem, it's the criminals. Realism is a part of our sport. That's the whole point of Mil Sim (Military Simulation) and Re-enactments. (Which is really popular btw, and not just with airsofters. Checkout www.salute.ie )

As for leaving the airsoft guns in a safe place, I assume you mean a club or at the airsoft game grounds. If you are willing to pay for a club house and the massive amount of storage space that would be needed, then most of us would be happy with this. Can't speak for everyone, but I hate carrying all this heavy equipment back and forth from my house to the airsoft locations. However, we do play at different locations each week, so there is a small problem in that. Another thing to consider. The equipment is very expensive (we don't use those low quality cheap guns that were on sale at the Galway races). Security at any storage location would need to be very good, possibly using a security guard. Very expensive.

Oh, and airsoft manufacturers are not going to change the design of their airsoft guns to suit the requirements of a few hundred people in Ireland. They've been making airsoft guns for 20 years and they have always looked fairly realistic. This in itself has not been a problem in any other country so far.

I've already given the website for one of the popular airsoft locations. The exact location is given on the website. It is free to turn up, talk to people, use the airsoft guns on the firing range etc. If you then decide that you want to play, then I'd pay for your entry into the game. Now, I'm not rich, so I can't extend the offer to everyone, but I've no problem paying for one anti-airsofter from here to come play and see what it's all about. (FYI, €45 for entry and gun rental for the full day). I'm sure the site owner would not mind giving everyone a 20 mins free session depending on the availability of rental airsoft guns.

Contact me at tonymasons 'at' gmail.com if you want to come along to a game.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 11:59Report this post to the editors

Sooo you say you have an "aquaintence in the firearms trade" who invites you to keep your hand in??Maybe you should have a chat with him to tell you the difference between a toy and a real firearm??
He obviously didnt tell you very much about firearms saftey and the stupid storage requirements on clubs,and the potential of a break in in a club where the chance of the criminals making off with a large amount of guns in one go is greater than a single break in in a house and one or two firearms being stolen.

Next you say you live in a society that doesnt have the restrictions not being properly enforced in EIRE

Sorry ,This is the Republic of IRELAND..Only a Britisher would still call it that.... Saorstaat Eire,or Eire terminology went out in the late 40s So are you another rejected blow in British holophobe,telling us poor thick Paddies how to lead out lives again???
BTW where did you fire a semi auto pistol in the UK,they are banned over there IF you are residing in that gun and crime free totalitarian paradise that is.

Rudeness..Well as long as you keep calling us gunfetishists I will continue to respond in kind.Ignorant holophobes.

In your previous posts you claimed that the muzzle would be the place to restrict veloicity of the bb of the airsoft .That just shows your total ignorance of of either airsoft or firearms.You work on the propellant side of things Charlie Boy. Plus,your obvious dementia in having an open register of airsoft toys is totally ununderstandble.By rights then you would want an open register of real firearms owners as well,accesiable to every loon in the general public???Tell me exactly HOW this would make the country safer and holophobes rest easier???The police do not let everyone inspect the firearms register for a very good reason.

As for AFAR members pictures that show an airsoft gun,but little else.I would hardly accept that this is conclusive proof that they were sold at the Galway races.For all we know she/he could have nipped out and bought one and photoed it in their back garden and then posted it here as "proof".

All in all Charlie your abymal ignorance of guns wether real or toys shows that you have nebver either handled a real one or a toy airsoft and claiming an "aquaintance"is a gun dealer doesnt hold water.As you obviously never listend ,looked or learned anything from them. Not to mind your non knowledge of firearms laws as well,or procedure to own or posses one
To use your saying about digging holes.When you have dug yourself into a deep one you should quit digging....

author by AFAR Memberpublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 13:55Report this post to the editors

Tmasons,

I have pointed out in an earlier post on this thread that I have no problem with airsoft as a recreational activity for adults in a safe environment where no harm can come to anyone. I do however have a problem with these guns being sold by and to children with no supervision, which is exactly what was happening at the Galway races. Most of the airsoft players who have posted here seem to think this inappropriate too, as did the gardai on the day I witnessed this, who proceeded to confiscate a large number of the guns.

As I also said, there is no mention on the guns or the boxes of their strength, just warnings about the danger of firing them at animlas or people, using them without protective equiptment or selling them to minors.

I am certainly no expert on airsoft and would not attempt to dispute the facts as you have presented them. However, i can say that I did fire one of the smaller guns on sale at the races at my foot, just to see if it would hurt. Through my very heavy boot I felt a distinct sting, and decided not to do the same directly onto my skin. I can safely say, without having any idea of the joule capacity of the gun, that if someone were to shoot it into my eye, I would end up in the A and E department of UCHG.

Now while I appreciate that in a game of airsoft under proper conditions, no damage would be done, I am sure you can appreciate my concern at seeing these items on sale to children. I saw, at the races, one little boy of about eight or nine years old walking around with his friends waving one of the guns. I didn't see him fire it, but would not like to imagine what would happen if he aimed towards his pals... This is the problem I have with these items, not people like yourself who use them for a shoot out with ouyr adult friends on the weekends where nobody can get hurt.

You asked if Sabwatch was really here to defend airsoft or just to provoke the "other guys". Sabwatch is a known troll on all indymedia animal rights threads (take a look into the archives for some of his previous rants, insults and attempts to provoke). He has been in hibernation for a while but is well and truly back now it seems, calling us sexually inadequate criminals and the like. It's quite amusing really!

author by TMasonspublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 14:41Report this post to the editors

Thanks AFAR for your support of our sport (when played safely).

We fully agree with you that children should not be allowed to use airsoft guns without very strict adult supervision. Unfortunately, this is happening for two reasons.

Firstly, some of these stall owners and retail shops are selling the airsoft guns (albeit low quality ones) to children. It is irresponsible, but they only care abou making profit and many have rejected pleas to stop.

Secondly, there are no legal restrictions on the sale of these airsoft guns to under 18's.

Fixing the latter, should fix the former. Now to find a way to convince ministers to make this change rather than just banning the whole sport again...

And yes, if you got hit in the eye with an airsoft gun, you most certainly would need treatment in hospital. There would be no permanent damage though, just a few weeks of discomfort and blurred vision.

author by Bernie Wright - Alliance for Animal rightspublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 18:00Report this post to the editors

just found an old comment by the vociferous SABWATCH
lots of stuff he said is on the Internet, just type in his name on the Internet to see a broader picture of this man

...interesting...

Source please Animalrights
by SABWATCH Domh Beal 22, 2005 19:07
You say you talked to a family who let their son shoot a dog with an airgun.Off to the Gaurds with you,as they no doubt would be intrested in first animal cruelty and secondly the illegal possesion and misuse of a firearm,as airguns are classified as firearms here in Ireland.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Thu Aug 23, 2007 19:58Report this post to the editors

Obviously you are not aware that such a costume is illegal in the UK under the 1936 uniforms act and that act has more than one equivalent in Irish law? & that furthermore there are provisions under Irish law to proscribe the wearing of military uniform accept those allowed by the legitimate arms of the state & those pertaining to accredited diplomatic legations? Of course exceptions are made all the time - in the UK when the 36 act came up for discussion (from 35- 36) people thought boy scouts would be treated the same way as blackshirts. But more applications of both laws were made on the island of Ireland and to this day the harrassment suffered by members of the republican and loyalist traditions for their uniforms are based on interpretation of such laws.
I can only imagine the shock your behaviour and irresponsibility brought to the taxi driver.

Oh well. This thread really was worth pushing I feel, because it is illumination for many of our readers who are pacifists in the main to the emergent sport of air-soft, its obvious gun-fetishism & even though you suggested you would meet your opponents halfway - it seems the only thing you'll accept is restricting the sale and use to 18's or over. I'm frankly disappointed that you could claim forensic tests, ballistic tests, custom & excise practise and now call a taxi driver who is unwilling to carry someone dressed as a paramilitary an "extremist". To recap some points which aren't being dealt with thus far -

1) a public register of who owns these weapons. Perhaps it is more true that you resist such a register not to prevent "theft of toys which may be used as replica firearms" but to prevent you being arrested for breaches of the offences against the state laws...
2) weapons clearly marked as replicas & a sincere campaign to ensure they look less like weapons and more like toys.
3) weapons to be left in a range or on a secure site not in owners homes.
4) secure sale of weapons through recognised and responsible merchants of other sporting and gun goods.
5) a sincere attempt to remove the language of "urban conflict" & now it becomes obvious by TMasons' paramilitary dress admission & the shock it gave a taxi-driver - the accoutrements of militia from both the websites used by those who support the sport & those who would see this sport as a harmless form of entertainment.

author by SABWATCHpublication date Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:54Report this post to the editors

Afar member.You now admit to comitting a crime on a public board.
Recklessy discharging a firearm in a public place.Thats a 5000 euro fine and/or a year in the local clink.I ,as a good citizen must notify the Gardai on this matter.
Not only that ,by doing so you make a total idiocy of your claims about being concerned about the saftey of these things.Suppose that BB had richochetd and hit somone in the eye as well?Were youwearing saftey glasses ??Doubt it very much.Troll i might be in your view,but at least a responsible one when it comes to firearms saftey.

Bernie W ,you still and never will understand the difference between a air rifle, a real rifle and a toy.
For your info on your last pathetic attempt at a straw arguement.An air rifle fires a lead pellet at over one kilojoule of force,and is liscensed as a firearm here in Ireland.Do go and read the firearms acts somtime before you go off ranting about things you claim to know about....

Charlton Heston clutching at straws.

Sorry old bean.The Queens writ doesnt run in jolly old Paddyland anymore.Jolly rotten what?
We do nt have any rules against wearing uniforms here.Apart from paramilitary organisations intent on overthrowing the Irish state,those that you alluded to.However they have one other thing as well,they are proscribed organisations that have comitted acts of terror.AFIK airsoft clubs are not on that list .Not to mind that we are not that fussy on it either.We have plenty of folks dressed in paramilitary rigs at national commerations of the republican kind,obeying military commands.Well in contravention of offences against the state act 1939.If the Gardai dont move on them,do you think they will be too upset about airsofters
???
The rest of your points 1to 5 have been discussed and shot down here numerous times as pure fantasy or idiocy.So no point in replying to them yet again

author by TMasonspublication date Fri Aug 24, 2007 16:53Report this post to the editors

by charlton heston Thu Aug 23, 2007 19:58
Obviously you are not aware that such a costume is illegal in the UK under the 1936 uniforms act and that act has more than one equivalent in Irish law? & that furthermore there are provisions under Irish law to proscribe the wearing of military uniform accept those allowed by the legitimate arms of the state & those pertaining to accredited diplomatic legations? Of course exceptions are made all the time - in the UK when the 36 act came up for discussion (from 35- 36) people thought boy scouts would be treated the same way as blackshirts. But more applications of both laws were made on the island of Ireland and to this day the harrassment suffered by members of the republican and loyalist traditions for their uniforms are based on interpretation of such laws.
I can only imagine the shock your behaviour and irresponsibility brought to the taxi driver.

Oh well. This thread really was worth pushing I feel, because it is illumination for many of our readers who are pacifists in the main to the emergent sport of air-soft, its obvious gun-fetishism & even though you suggested you would meet your opponents halfway - it seems the only thing you'll accept is restricting the sale and use to 18's or over. I'm frankly disappointed that you could claim forensic tests, ballistic tests, custom & excise practise and now call a taxi driver who is unwilling to carry someone dressed as a paramilitary an "extremist". To recap some points which aren't being dealt with thus far -

1) a public register of who owns these weapons. Perhaps it is more true that you resist such a register not to prevent "theft of toys which may be used as replica firearms" but to prevent you being arrested for breaches of the offences against the state laws...
2) weapons clearly marked as replicas & a sincere campaign to ensure they look less like weapons and more like toys.
3) weapons to be left in a range or on a secure site not in owners homes.
4) secure sale of weapons through recognised and responsible merchants of other sporting and gun goods.
5) a sincere attempt to remove the language of "urban conflict" & now it becomes obvious by TMasons' paramilitary dress admission & the shock it gave a taxi-driver - the accoutrements of militia from both the websites used by those who support the sport & those who would see this sport as a harmless form of entertainment.

==============
There are laws preventing the wearing the uniform of the Irish Defence Forces in public or by IDF personal during off-duty. There are no laws preventing the wearing of other types of camo clothing. Just think of all the people that wear camo trousers as fashionable clothing. They don't scare you, do they?

The taxi driver I mentioned was not shocked by my appearance. He was just 100% against anything that was even remotely related to anything military. Since you were not present during the incident, can cannot presume to know the taxi drivers state of mind based on a short comment I made. His views were rather extreme....he refused to let someone enter his car purely because of the clothes that they were wearing.

The thousands upon thousands of people who have seen me wearing the clothing were also not 'shocked' or upset by my appearance. I have had a few questions (mainly from tourists) asking if I was in the army or if they could have their picture taken with me!) I've also had a drunk 'salute' me. I've been seen by dozens of Gardai and have not once been stopped or questioned. If my appearance was in any way threatening, you can bet they would have had a word with me. During the early days of the sport, a large number of players would meet up at the Spire on O'Connell street on saturday morning. Even the sight of 20+ players dressed in full combat clothing didn't raise an eyebrow. It was one thing that we were worried about, but experience shows us that nobody actually cares what we wear. If we started acting in an aggressive manner, I'm sure that would change.

1. I've discussed the register Idea. A private register with the Gardai is acceptable and does the same job. Nobody has been able to provide ANY reason as to why the register must be public.
2. We have no way to force manufacturers to change the appearance of the airsoft guns (and as stated before, they are not weapons...weapons kill people). There is no will to make any effort in this regard as we know from experience in other countries that it makes no difference. Again, I must ask....How precisely do you think we can accomplise what you ask? What do you suggest we do the the airsoft guns to 'mark' them? And would it stop criminals from using the airsoft guns in crimes?
3. I've covered the storage issue previously as well. The required storage space, and the security needed to protect 10,000-100,000 euro worth of equipment is not financially feasible. Nice if we could leave the equipment at our regular site, but we can't. Also, we dont have 'local' clubs as such..we play at different locations each week...some of which are in Northern Ireland or the UK. I own over €1500 worth of equipment and am not willing to put it at risk of theft. What difference does it make where the equipment is stored? Criminals are not going to store them at a club.
4. 'secure sale of weapons through recognised and responsible merchants'...yes, we would agree with this. But you really cant stop 12 year old Timmy from buying an airsoft gun from an internet retailer in Hong Kong. That's up to Timmy's parents! Sorry, but you can't change how the world buys/sells items over the internet....it's impossible to control. It's not a reluctance on the part of airsofters, it's just an impossibility.
5. Sorry, but I've no idea what you are saying in the point. You want us to change the terminolgy being used? You're the one who keeps referring to airsoft guns as weapons. We want them to be called airsoft sports equipment / airsoft taggers / airsoft guns...specifically to distinguish them from real firearms. Please elaborate.

Oh, and regarding this 'gun-fetishism' term that you keep pushing about. We have no interest in real guns (if we did, we could go clay pigeon shooting, hunting, or join one of the many guns clubs in Ireland). We have no interest in weapons that can kill or maim. I consider myself a pacifist. I would never join an army, or shoot someone, and am firmly against any form of violence. (no, airsoft is not violent...there is no intention to physically injure anyone). And so what if we do have a fascination with airsoft guns, replica's or whatever you want to call them? How does that harm anyone? It's no stranger that a fascination with stamp collecting, bird watching etc.

The invitation to come meet us and see the sport in action is still open.

author by charlton hestonpublication date Fri Aug 24, 2007 19:02Report this post to the editors

Great stuff the pacifism. Terrible how police pick and choose their interpretations of the offences against the state act or their uniform act. But to the little kids we must try harder!
There are currently several means of ensuring that wee scallywag can't buy porn or viagra on the internet be it from Hong Kong or Europe's largest adult entertainment online provider (which is in my city as it happens). One has a civil liberties aspect - it calls for registration of all mobile phones (where payment is made to a 3rd party telecommunication account) another also has a civil liberties aspect & prevents sale of services or goods to a credit card registered to an under 18.

Would you support either of those measures restricting all our civil liberties to keep your toys that are guns from the wee scallywags who might think their guns are toys? Or would you just go on keeping it all on the sly from the back of a van & stop writing comments & bringing attention to yourself ?

;-) we've a great site you know. Loads of issues & they all dovecote.
"welcome to the grey side".

author by SABWATCHpublication date Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:53Report this post to the editors

Is what exactly in the Queens English???
Would you mind simplifying it for us thicko gunfethists??

author by TMasonspublication date Mon Aug 27, 2007 13:01Report this post to the editors

by charlton heston Fri Aug 24, 2007 19:02
Great stuff the pacifism. Terrible how police pick and choose their interpretations of the offences against the state act or their uniform act. But to the little kids we must try harder!
There are currently several means of ensuring that wee scallywag can't buy porn or viagra on the internet be it from Hong Kong or Europe's largest adult entertainment online provider (which is in my city as it happens). One has a civil liberties aspect - it calls for registration of all mobile phones (where payment is made to a 3rd party telecommunication account) another also has a civil liberties aspect & prevents sale of services or goods to a credit card registered to an under 18.

Would you support either of those measures restricting all our civil liberties to keep your toys that are guns from the wee scallywags who might think their guns are toys? Or would you just go on keeping it all on the sly from the back of a van & stop writing comments & bringing attention to yourself ?

;-) we've a great site you know. Loads of issues & they all dovecote.
"welcome to the grey side".

================
Can you provide more details of these measures you propose to restrict sales to under 18's? I know nothing about ordering porn or viagra on the internet so I'm not familiar with any measures used to prevent under 18's from buying them (And I would have thought that the restrictions for such items would be 16 years old, not 18).

Also, I'm not clear about how registering mobile phones would help.

As for credit cards registered to under 18's, wel I didn't know that was possible either. I assume we would have to get agreement from every airsoft retailer world-wide to impose this restriction. Of course, the buy could then just use paypal, or a bank draft to pay.

author by TMasonspublication date Mon Aug 27, 2007 16:33Report this post to the editors

Oops..big mistake in last post. It should have read:

"Of course, they could then just use paypal, or a bank draft to pay."

instead of:

"Of course, the buy could then just use paypal, or a bank draft to pay."

author by TMasonspublication date Fri Aug 31, 2007 11:44Report this post to the editors

FYI. A private register has just been created and is available to the Gardai/Courts upon request. It is held and maintained by the Irish Airsoft Association.

author by willy wanker - nonepublication date Fri Sep 28, 2007 17:48Report this post to the editors

I am 14 years old and ever since i was 5 i have had an obsession with bb guns and at this stage i have a box full including fully automatic to single shot pistols and a rifel and they are perfectly legal if they are under 1 joule and as far as im concerned this guy has made a complete fool of him self just tring to cause controversy.

author by Mono - www.delta-assault.co.ukpublication date Tue Oct 02, 2007 03:17Report this post to the editors

I am sick of hearing people saying pellet guns,airguns when they are talking about airsoft guns. I have been living in the uk for the past 5 years. in witch time i have been playing airsoft for the best part of 4 and a half years, i am part of a 12 man team based in devon. Airsoft guns should not be sold to anyone under the age of 18 and they are safe to use as long as you are not a twat with them. It is the best sport i have ever done. also you sa you cant buy g10 as it is over 1joule in power all you have to do is buy a stock sprng for it and have an airsoft engineer like myself down grade the spring and tht will do it or you can d it yourself if you have the kit and know how. the fps over here that is used on sites is up to 500fps and i have been hit by some of the most powerful snipers and it has never broke the skin. if you want to know the full power of airsoft kit go to a milsim ite in the uk and you will see for yourself. i am happy that they have changed the law over home so airsoft is legal now that means when i move home in jan of 2008 i can bring all my kit home i will have to down grade a few of them but at least i can still play my sport. i will be looking to set up a airsoft site in or around kildare the same as what we use over here as there is not much over there yet in the way of a proper airsoft site. if you would like to know more about the team have a look at our site it is still under work at the mo, but feel free to ask anything about airsoft on it just ask one of my mods or admin and they will try to help you out and if they cant just leave me a msg on my user name (mono)

www.delta-assault.co.uk

author by Eoghanpublication date Sat Nov 03, 2007 20:56Report this post to the editors

You wanted to find out if these guns were illegal so you asked the Gardai. Ahh bless your little heart, what made you think the Gardai know anything about the law or guns. I got my Dad to hand in a G10 and a Gas operated pistol during the amnesty and the two Guards at the desk didn't know one end of them from the other. They put them in a drawer without even checking them to see if they were loaded.

The Gardai would confiscate the guns if they felt like it without even knowing whether they were illegal or not. Did you see them test fire the guns to determine their power output before they took them away??

author by Alpublication date Mon Nov 05, 2007 23:13Report this post to the editors

Where in the offensive weapons Act does it state a certain pressure is required to make a weapon legal or illegal? All it states is that it fires a projectile. Speed, strenght are not an issue.

author by Robpublication date Wed Nov 14, 2007 15:24Report this post to the editors

Well after hearing joe duffy make an asss of himself on this matter, I was not surprised to see it writen down wrong also.

As already expressed, if your going to write about something like airsoft "taggers" would you ever do your homework first.

Next you'll be telling us that it's illegal to run biofuel in our cars as it's harmful to the enviroment or some shite like that.

Crap as ever,
rob

Number of comments per page
  
locked We are currently not accepting any more comments on this article.
 
© 2001-2014 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy