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3D Printed Gun Maker Cody Wilson Defends Open Source Freedom 354

Lucas123 (935744) writes "Cody Wilson, the 26-year-old former law school student who published plans for printing 3D guns online, disputed claims by universities and government agencies that his thermoplastic gun design is unsafe. Wilson claims the agencies that tested the guns did not build them to spec. In a Q&A with Computerworld, he also addressed why he's continuing to press regulatory agencies to allow him to offer the plans again for upload after being ordered to take them down, saying it's less about the Second Amendment and more about the implications of open source and the digital age. "If you want to talk about rights, what does it mean to respect a civil liberty or civil right? Well, it means you understand there are social costs in having that right; that's why it deserves protection in the first place," he said. Wilson is also planning to release other gun-related project, though not necessarily a CAD design."
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3D Printed Gun Maker Cody Wilson Defends Open Source Freedom

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  • Who Cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sycodon ( 149926 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:43AM (#47155959)

    A first gen product using revolutionary technology and people are whining about it being unsafe? It's like complaining that the Model T didn't have airbags.

    I think they are missing the point entirely. 3D printing will only become more sophisticated, using stronger materials and will be faster. People will be able to manufacture devices that are currently controlled or are so specialized that it hasn't occurred to the Feds to control them.

    This is not about a plastic guns, this is about a paradigm shift that is no less momentous than VHS and later MP3s.

  • Irresponsible (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ebusinessmedia1 ( 561777 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:47AM (#47155999)

    This is not what the world needs - i.e. an easy way to make an unregulated *weapon* - i.e. an object designed to kill. This is not about open source, or anything else that Cody Wilson claims; it's about the *result* of his actions id these his designs are used to proliferate more *weapons*. America already experiences 33-35,000 gun deaths every year. America is FOURTH in gun deaths, worldwide - after Thailand, Colombia and Nigeria.Isn't that enough? Do we want to make guns even easier to obtain?

    Project forward ten years, when 3D printers are far less expensive, and gun designs have been perfected. It's trivial to consider the new kinds of concealable (and undetectable) weapons that could be made via 3D printers.

    Instead of arguing this point, we need to make it very clear that anyone making or distributing 3D gun models should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. If there isn't a law, make one - make TEN! I don't care.

    It's sickening to hear pro-gun people talk about "freedom" and "self-defense", when they seem not one bit to care about the thousands killed by guns, and ironically attempt to make a self-defense argument for their position when it's the nearly unabated spread of weapons in America enabled by the terrorist NRA leadership; their Congressional whores; and, their gun-manufacturing overlords.

    If Cody sends out one more 3D plan, jail him for 10 years! People who want to be free of gun deaths have rights, too!

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by iggymanz ( 596061 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:48AM (#47156017)

    logic fails you. It is already legal to make yourself a gun with traditional material by traditional means. Illegal gun manufacture not a relevant issue. Name one massacre (or murder in the past year, for that matter) done with a homemade gun. All gun killers, for all intents and purposes, use a factory made weapon.

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by oh_my_080980980 ( 773867 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:50AM (#47156051)
    Which has nothing to do with using a 3-D printer to make a gun. No one is outlawing the use of a 3-D printer. However, they are restricting the use of a 3-D printer to make guns. Thanks for missing the point.
  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:50AM (#47156053)

    Are you looking forward to more Newtowns, Auroras, and Columbines? We need to outlaw 3D printing until they can be made with safeguards to protect against illegal gun manufacture.

    How many overbearing, know-what's-best-for-everyone gun-grabbers who want to "outlaw guns" (or in this case 3D printing...) turn right around and mock the 'War on Drugs" because it doesn't fucking work?

    A "War on Guns" isn't going to work, either. Just ask the hundreds of people murdered with guns every year in "gun free" zones.

    Next, let's ban knives []

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:04PM (#47156213)

    I can legally use tools in my home metal shop to make a firearm. Why should this be different?

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gfxguy ( 98788 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:10PM (#47156303)
    And the fact of the matter is that I don't even own a gun, nor do I particularly want one, but I fully support gun rights (so the logical fallacy is proven a fallacy in one simple case). I support gun rights because I support freedom, and freedom comes with some costs. In many of the countries with people with attitudes like this, they don't even have the right to free speech.
  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by I'm New Around Here ( 1154723 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:27PM (#47156553)

    By my reading of the 2nd Amendment, there are no illegal gun shops in the US. Making one illegal would violate the phrase "shall not be infringed".

  • Re: Irresponsible (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ebusinessmedia1 ( 561777 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:29PM (#47156565)
    You are making a hasty generalization about "my side". In recent polling, 90% of Americans (including NRA members) said they wanted better background checks for gun licensing. the NRA fought that, and won. the NRA leadership is a terrorist leadership, completely insensitive to anything but the filthy lucre they take form their gun manufacturing overlords, used to bribe corrupt legislators.
  • by dbc ( 135354 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:31PM (#47156603)

    Look people, this is NOT a 2A issue, this is a 1A issue. When does censorship stop? Why can't gun plans be published?

    What if after some future election it became illegal to publish plans for IUD contra-ceptives without a licence after some person posts plans for a 3D printed one. Then for a research physician to get published in a medical journal he'd need permission from the government. How about that? How is that different?

    How would you feel about needing to obtain a goverenemt license to publish anything about crytographic code? Where would that stop? Could you teach your kids how to make a Ceasar cipher, or would you go to jail for that under a national security gag-order.

    He is publishing plans. This is a 1A issue.

  • Disagree. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by brunes69 ( 86786 ) <> on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @12:44PM (#47156775) Homepage

    Disagree. The US got the first amendment right. And you got the second amendment wrong.

    Owning a firearm has nothing to do with essential personal freedoms or rights of the individual to exist in a free state. The only justification for it is to protect oneself from infringement on said freedoms, but that can just as easily be done through strong laws and a properly functioning government.

    Again, I would point to the US as the prime example of why the second amendment does absolutely nothing to help you secure any of your primary freedoms, since they are being violated ALL THE TIME by your government, but I don't see anyone successfully taking up arms against them.. and I find the concept that citizens with a few guns could hold their own against the american military-industrial complex a bit of a farce to begin with.

    All the second amendment gets your country is the highest per-capita gun violence rate in the western world. It hasn't gotten you anything else.

  • Re:Irresponsible (Score:4, Insightful)

    by flyingsquid ( 813711 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @01:12PM (#47157221)

    Guns are tools, used for entertainment, sport, self defense... as soon as someone uses one to violate your rights, you can go ahead and execute them, as far as I'm concerned. But get rid of the person that violated your rights... "things" don't violate your rights, only other people do.

    Taken to the logical extreme, the "guns don't kill people, people kill people" argument says any sort of gun control is illogical. Fully automatic AK-47s don't kill people, people kill people! Browning .50 caliber machine guns don't kill people, people kill people! Hand grenades don't kill people, people kill people! A plutonium implosion weapon doesn't kill people, people kill people! Ownership of a nuclear bomb doesn't violate people's rights, so we shouldn't restrict ownership of fissile material. Of course, if someone were to detonate a 20 kiloton weapon in a school and kill all the schoolchildren, and incinerate everyone for miles around, well should throw the book at them. But let's not get all crazy and talk about putting restrictions on enriched uranium. The fissile material, explosive lenses and triggers are just a tool, it's what people decide to do with it that matters, right?

    The reason that argument sounds insane because it IS insane. Except for failed states like Somalia and Afghanistan, EVERY state accepts some limitations on the kinds of weapons that people can carry, the only difference is that some states apply more restrictions than others. The U.S. gun control laws are far more lax than in the UK, Australia, or Canada, but we have them- you can't just buy a machine gun. This always seems to get forgotten in discussions about gun control: gun control is already in existence, the only question is whether we need less, more, or to keep things the same. The US, UK, Australia and Canada all agree that some weapons are too dangerous to let people run around with, we just disagree about where to draw the line. Given that the US has an endless series of mass killings, and the other countries don't, it's not hard to see who made the right call.

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MBGMorden ( 803437 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @01:43PM (#47157627)

    I've never seen a successful argument involves "the right to *not* . . .". You have the right to something. The right to "not" is just used as a contrived way to deprive others of rights.

    IE, "I have the right to not see gays kissing in the street.". "I have the right to not see a black man with a white woman.".

    As soon as you have to frame your argument around "the right to not", you've already lost.

  • Re:Disagree. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) * <> on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @02:03PM (#47157875) Homepage Journal

    Sure, but back in 1776 people with rifles and pistols could organize and defeat the government. What relevance does that have today? How does it counter what the GP said about guns being useless against the modern U.S. government?

    Either you have to accept that the right to bear arms no longer serves its stated purpose (to defend the citizens from the government) or you have to argue that citizens should get F15s, tanks and maybe the odd nuke to maintain the balance.

  • Re:Who Cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fuzznutz ( 789413 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @02:58PM (#47158463)

    The problem is there is a conflict in peoples political agendas.

    I would simplify it further. The problem is hypocrisy. Everybody wants freedom for things they enjoy and wants to restrict others' freedom for things they dislike. The irony of it is that those whose political leanings are more to the left... shall we say, claim to want freedom, egalitarianism and tolerance, yet are lightning quick to form lines to restrict anything that violates their sensibilities.

    These days, everyone, left and right, wants to go crying to mommy when someone does something they don't like. Nobody wants to mind their own business and thinks they always know best.

"What the scientists have in their briefcases is terrifying." -- Nikita Khrushchev