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Old 05-10-2012, 03:56 AM #1
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Default Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Posted Jan, 2013 - New York Times
Headline - A Most Unlucky Year for the Laser Pointer Hobbyist
Quote:
Today President Obama, fresh off to a new start from his monumental land slide election last fall, signed into law the legislation passed by the newly Democrat majorities of both Houses of Congress empowering the FDA to search, seize, and confiscate all greater than 1mW laser devices, or components there of, that are in current possession of any US citizen. President Obama then followed the signing ceremony by issuing an executive order to the FDA and US Customs, under Homeland Security oversight, to jointly pursue all means available to ensure the interdiction of all such imported laser devices.

In addition, after many months of close negotiations between the US and European Union an agreement is immanent to follow suit with the US for enacting similar binding laws to criminalize the ownership, importation, or any attempt to sell or trade any greater than 1mW laser device or associated components within the EU Collective.
My questions are:

- How plausible do you find the above fictitious headline? (and no, I am not asking about the postulated election results )

- How many of us have begun to believe that a laser pointer ban within the US or EU, similar to that of Australia, is simply inevitable?


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Old 05-10-2012, 04:18 AM #2
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Dmn you Mac.... watching breakout kings, clicked on your post, and as I skimmed the quote, before reading the rest of the post, or really processing it, my blood pressure shot up a lot

The problem with AU is, simply possession is illegal, and regular police are required to confiscate lasers.

Also so long as we don't have a VAT, packages will not inspected thoroughly enough to prevent shipping in lasers by the container.

What I'm truly afraid of, are draconian rules where mere possession is illegal in itself, and proof of intent.

(Side note, NYC Law about weapons - paraphrasing - Any object used that can be used as a weapon is considered a weapon. Possession of a weapon is proof of intent to use said weapon.)

I'm quite a bit more worried about the continuous, and systematic erosion of our constitutional rights, much more so than I am about lasers

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Old 05-10-2012, 04:46 AM #3
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Scary thought to think of. However, I don't think a ban is inevitable as long as there isn't a large incident caused by laser pointers, say, an airplane crash.
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:48 AM #4
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

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Originally Posted by Apocalypse View Post
Scary thought to think of. However, I don't think a ban is inevitable as long as there isn't a large incident caused by laser pointers, say, an airplane crash.
If that happened everyone with a laser pointer would be labeled as a terrorist. :/
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:52 AM #5
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Doesn't take an incident, just a big enough scare. Look at AU... no plane actually crashed.
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Old 05-10-2012, 06:07 AM #6
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Yeah the thought makes my blood pressure rise as well.. I really hope this does not happen, sorry but I really don't even want to think about it almost.

Hopefully for the time being the President has other ways to distract the public from never ending wars, ballooning national debt, bad economy , rising unemployment etc then fearmongering on laserpointers. Or lets hope so...

Related to Australia, I think the most ridiculous fact about the Australian rules is that they consider it a weapon if it is what over 1mW??

First of all no lasers we have access to are designed as weapons and isn't it a war crime in the category of poisons gasses, biological weapons etc to even use a laser to blind in war? I believe the closest thing of a laser ever used in war besides weapons targeting is the dazer?? which the British used in the Falklands war to dazzle but not permanently blind..

The Australian authorities are making a complete mockery of themselves and are totally unscientific to think that a 2mW laser could ever be used as a weapon. It is obviously not powerful enough to cause permanent harm unless you literally held it up to your eyes for a long time and did not move, and second it is not designed, or ever meant for a weapon. The ridiculousness of this idiocy is out of this world.

Chainsaws are extremely dangerous yet no one considers it a weapon if you own one. So why would the government think they can impose on owners or define the reason of owning a particular item as a weapon if the owner never demonstrated the desire to use a non weapon object as a weapon in any way.

If you point a laser directly at someones eyes, pick up a rock with desire to crack someones head open, grab a tree branch to hit someone, grab a clump of grass to sufficate someone then the purpose is demonstrated to use these items as a weapon but until someone does these things the item is not a weapon!!!

Until you demonstrate the purpose to use hostile intent with any random object it is not a weapon until you do so. Until then it is just a laser pointer, or clump of grass, stick, rock etc!

I could assume that others voting for a particular party or parties is dangerous for my health, so should I consider the ballot paper a weapon then?

What idiocy!

EDIT: Sorry Madmacmo, I think I failed to talk related to your question again somewhat, it's one of those topics that makes me almost dizzy with anger at the absurdity and haphazardness and casual nature of needless additions of legislation that make it hard for me to think straight almost.

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Old 05-10-2012, 05:28 PM #7
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Hobbyists will find a way arround, password protected lasers!! Boo-Yeah!
Jokes apart I do find it somewhat plausible , because i think due to the increasing complaints of aircraft being lased sooner or later the word would be "ban" ultimately..
Then as a rule of thumb more countries would follow just so people like us who actually enjoy the hobby would feel bad..
But on a side note, Laser Diodes manufacturers will continue to develop more and more lasers and this isnt going to stop, So there is a pretty good chance we'll be able to keep those projectors coming and keep them lasing indoors..
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Old 05-10-2012, 06:08 PM #8
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

I don't think we have anything to worry about where projectors are concerned at all...

Pretty sure they're even legal in AU, I was under the impression that the ban was strictly on hand held lasers there
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Old 05-12-2012, 08:57 PM #9
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Hand held lasers will be banned at some point

The only question will be whether they are >1mW or >5mW

They are incredibly dangerous in the wrong hands, just like firearms and look at how those are now regulated despite being a constitutional right.

The aircraft incidents get the headlines but how soon before we start to hear of people being deliberately blinded by them.

As Class 4 handhelds are of no use to society whatsoever, it will be very easy for someone to bring in a complete ban with no opposition. Just wait for a novice elected representative who wants to create a name for themselves pick up on this and run with it to show how they 'acted in the interests of public safety'.

Count the days, cos it's going to happen.

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Old 05-13-2012, 05:36 AM #10
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Quote:
Originally Posted by InfinitusEquitas View Post
I don't think we have anything to worry about where projectors are concerned at all...

Pretty sure they're even legal in AU, I was under the impression that the ban was strictly on hand held lasers there
Yup thats it, only complete handheld lasers.

If the ban happens, you WILL feel our pain!

AND you will find a way round it anyway

Quote:
Originally Posted by madmacmo View Post
Even though I mentioned my fear of laser pointers becoming as politically incorrect as guns, I by no means equate a Class 4 laser pointer with the lethality of a fire arm, and I am absolutely baffled as to how you are able to postulate that it is (even after the negative reps you received previously for stating as much).

I am not sure it will help you, given the egregious flawed logic to which you are obviously given; however - please note there has been no recorded instance of death caused by any Class 4 laser (if there were I would think it would almost have to be worthy of a Darwin Award); moreover there is not a single documented incident of a laser pointer causing total blindness.

Source - LaserPointerSafty.com
Laser Pointers and Handheld Lasers Used by the General Public




If you will, please carefully compare the above to the U.S. gun injury and death statistics below from 2009 - the year before the debut of Wicked Lasers' Spyder III Arctic
Source - LCAV.org - Legal Community Against Violence
Gun Violence Statistics

LoL little bit of difference there!
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Old 05-13-2012, 05:40 AM #11
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Silly boy!!

I simply stated that Class 4 handheld lasers are incredibly dangerous in the wrong hands.
And so are firearms.

I did not equate the 2 as being equally dangerous. Just that are both dangerous.

Read what is written, not what you want it to read.

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Old 05-13-2012, 05:55 AM #12
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

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Originally Posted by steveclv View Post
Silly boy!!

I simply stated that Class 4 handheld lasers are incredibly dangerous in the wrong hands.
And so are firearms.

I did not equate the 2 as being equally dangerous. Just that are both dangerous.

Read what is written, not what you want it to read.
LoL im glad you learned something from this thread, cause there is no way lasers are as dangerous as guns.
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Old 05-13-2012, 08:45 AM #13
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

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Yup thats it, only complete handheld lasers.

If the ban happens, you WILL feel our pain!

AND you will find a way round it anyway
They won't have to find a way around it, they'll just do what we already do :P

I don't doubt that very soon laser classifications (and subsequently laser laws) will be looked into and changed. In the year I've been on this forum I've seen 445 diodes go from 1.2W average up to 2.5W average. As of today we have 3W diodes that can make it into HANDHELD devices. It's just lucky that the ones holding these diodes are so trustworthy

After class IV (>500mW) there seems to be a large gap. Are there any classifications above that? If not, I give it a year and there soon will be.

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Old 05-13-2012, 10:12 AM #14
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Keep in mind that the US and AU are totally different with regards to citizens "rights".

Our constitution doesn't have the "right to bear arms" or "right to free speech", and it isn't ingrained in the population to "fight for your rights".

The momentum of the citizen here is no where near as great- we only have 20 million people in the same space as the US has 300 million. (70% of Australia isn't inhabitable, its desert - bring your own water).
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405nm 100mW Ultrafire C3
445nm 750mW Ultrafire W501B
445nm 1.8W 9mm diode Ultrafire C8

473nm 100mw DPSS Labby
488nm 12mW Uniphase Single Line Argon Gas laser.
532nm 315mW Lab laser
532nm 30mW eBay pointer
632.8nm 2mW HeNe
638nm 360mW Titanium Ice
660nm 120mW Energizer AAA MacGuyver build
660nm 300mW Cree C3 Stainless build
850nm (bugger all power probably 10mW) in NV equipment
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600-700nm protection glasses
190-540nm protection glasses
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Various Amateur radio & broadcast radio bits.... AWA P5 all valve 500W MW TX. 400 watt AM17 ex VHF aircraft band amplifier on 144 MHz.
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Old 05-13-2012, 09:39 PM #15
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Default Re: Laser Pointer History 101 - A Look Back at Why Your Laser Pointers Got Banned

Quote:
Originally Posted by steveclv View Post
Silly boy!!

I simply stated that Class 4 handheld lasers are incredibly dangerous in the wrong hands.
And so are firearms.

I did not equate the 2 as being equally dangerous. Just that are both dangerous.

Read what is written, not what you want it to read.
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