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Published 3 years ago with 11 Comments
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  • kdawson
    +5

    Simple answer. It is much easier to learn to shoot a crossbow effectively. It takes years to become proficient with a long bow. You can put a crossbow in a man's hands and have him combat effective with it in days. This is the same advantage that made firearms so terribly overwhelming later. As it was firearms that put an ignorant peasant on equal or even superior footing with armored knights ( also very time consuming to train and very expensive) and (I'm sorry anti gunners) finally gave power to the people. I think it is reasonable to say that guns are the tool that ended the feudal system and brought freedom to the masses.

    • kxh
      +6

      I might accept that gunpowder eventually brought an end to the feudal system but not light firearms. Initially light firearms were too complicated, expensive and clumsy to make and supply and fire.

      It wasn't until the invention of breech loading and cartridges that the "clumsy" went away.

      I don't think the feudal system ended because of weapons, it ended because of literacy and education.

      Sorry pro-gunners but having to live in a society where you don't trust anyone and think you need guns to defend yourself against fellow citizens and the government with the most massive fire power in the world is just dangerous fantasy.

      • kdawson
        +4

        You are wrong. Freedom was won with muzzleloading matchlocks, snaplocks, flintlocks and so on long before breechloaders were developed. It wasn't until after the America Civil War that our own army was supplied with breech loaders. I'm not necessarily pro gun, not an assault rifle or open carry guy, but history is history. I have read the lament of 14th century knight about how guns have put commoners on a level with him. This happened and is not some agenda statement.

        • kxh (edited 3 years ago)
          +4

          Freedom was won with muzzleloading matchlocks, snaplocks, flintlocks

          Fighting against a government which was itself only armed with muzzle loaders.

          To fight your government these days you would need a lot more than light arms. You would need aircraft, warships, heavy weapons, tanks, armoured cars, missiles and possibly tactical nukes. And your government fighting an insurrection is not limited by the Geneva convention. It can use chemical weapons and other weapons banned in war against its own civilians.

          It's not going to happen unless you're all suicidal.

          Edited: something for clarity.

          • Appaloosa
            +2

            History is full of revolts. Weapons have never made it unappealing!

        • kxh (edited 3 years ago)
          +3

          Which arose way past the medieval period and from a country, England that had a long period of stability and education and was a fair distance away.

          You planning on getting into an arms race with your own government? I'm pretty sure I know who'd win, or more likely, who'd lose.

          • kdawson
            +4

            I'm not advocating anything except not being helpless. I do suspect a government that doesn't trust its citizens. And I do wish some liberals would start standing up once in awhile. I believe to be evil and violence prone. I'll challenge you a bit more. Ever since Vietnam I've declared myself anti war, pacifist and non violent. And I am but I also a family man and feel I have a duty to defend my wife and daughter and, for that matter, any hapless fellow man threatened with violence. In this my own philosophy doesn't apply. After I got out of the service and started college I tried to be a hippy, but soon realized that, as much as I might want it to be, the hippy world vision was fantasy. Dream what you will but you also have to deal with reality.

    • AdelleChattre
      +2

      Curious, why would you say it was firearms instead of the horsebow or the crossbow that ended chivalry?

      • kdawson
        +4

        Because, as I understand it, that's what happened. The military elite didn't have any armor heavy enough to stop bullets that didn't also make them immobile and unable to fight at all.

        • spaceghoti
          +3

          That's also true of crossbows. It didn't have the extreme range of the English longbows but on a battlefield a quarrel could penetrate a knight's armor. That's why Pope Innocent III banned the weapon's use against Christians.

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