Let's get some bullshit out of the conversation here since the term assault rifle was a creation of the gun manufacturers. There's more than enough documentation for this with things like this copy of Guns & Ammo. Toss in that the StG-44 is the accepted grandadddy of these guns. StG-44 means Sturmgewehr 44, or Assault Rifle 44.
But, I don't need to go too far to see the pro-gun side shoot themselves in the foot, literally, in this argument. Since they will try to show these weapons are "hunting" rifles, or "modern sporting weapons". Take this comment from Gun Control Myth: The AR-15 is Not Actually a Hunting Rifle:
The AR-15 platform is known for its accuracy, especially over longer distances. For some types of hunting, this characteristic is particularly useful for successful hunts. Each bullet type has varying effective ranges. The .223 is effective from 400-600 meters. An AR-15 chambered in .308 has an effective range to about 800 meters; .338 Lapua's effective range is about 1500 meters; and .50 BMG has the range of about one mile..While the author is trying to show the round is effective at long ranges, making it a good gun for hunting. He is actually shooting down the argument for arming teachers. Now, this is where gun crazies get a little outrageous and try and argue that a bullet can kill at a range up to two miles.
But effective range to me means can you accurately hit a target, which takes the range way down. This comment from a gun forum is pretty typical for what effective range is like:
Fifty yards sounds about right. Unless they have good training, most people can't shoot a 4" barrel accurately enough to target a dump truck beyond about 50 yards.Yards and metres are about 3 inches in similarity, with metres being about 39 inches. Giving the 50 yard accuracy as being the max for a handgun, that would mean the person armed with the assault rifle would have the advantage by more than 350 metres.
Let's toss in the training needed so that people don't get killed in the cross-fire: especially if the teacher is firing off wildly inaccurate rounds while the shooter is laying down effective fire at a high rate of accuracy.
Again, this is another issue where accurate information would be needed, but the information is solidly "anti-gun" from what little is out there. The fact that the Columbine Shooters were engaged by a Jefferson County Sheriff's deputy seems to be lost in the debate. Toss in the times that armed people, whether civilian or professional, failed to stop, let alone ameliorate the situation is next to non-existent.
it's pretty easy to see the fallacy of someone armed with a handgun stopping someone with a rifle by just looking at the difference in effective range between those two weapons. The problem is that this argument is being pushed by people who should know better, but think "anti-gunners" don't know anything about firearms.
Some of us know quite a bit about guns, which is why we believe they should be regulated.
Anyway, this is the final argument to the people who want to call these things "hunting rifles" or "modern sporting rifles":