How Glock Became America's Gun

The handgun was a game-changing design when it came out in the early 1980s.
3:00 | 03/22/13

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Transcript for How Glock Became America's Gun
They say that you can bury a Glock pistol in the dirt digging up a year later and -- fire just like -- But even more durable is the love many Americans -- for this particular brand of god. It has been 98 days since the sandy -- massacre reignited -- fundamental American debate on personal firepower. And in that time gun control advocates have seen their hopes for change runs smack into that durable passion for everlasting weaponry. To understand how it got this way it helps to understand the rise. Of the -- Girl and -- the jam us settles in for a cozy night. But Q the creepy music. It's scary this lurking outside. She grabs her Glock semi automatic handgun. And the tension -- yeah. Now in the real world. One study found that women living with a gun are almost three times more likely to be shot to death. And in 201016. Times more women were killed by men they knew them by strangers. But in the world according block. Just the sight of their fearsome weapons -- -- to rule the invading stranger's eyes back in his head without even firing a shot. Nobody picked the wrong girl. This that has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on line to mostly rave reviews among YouTube -- -- but in reality. It's the company that really doesn't advertise at all. Need to post videos like this went on their website because bloc is already America's favorite so called super -- -- good guys and bad. Onscreen and off between your faith and -- -- -- the immune. It gets -- approval of Arnold and end of days and Tommy Lee Jones in US marshals have a backup weapon. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- To talk -- cool was among the many rappers saying the glories of this -- before a Glock was used to murder him. At age twenty fox. Congresswoman Gabby Giffords was not only shot by a Glock -- sun but still carries one of home. It is. Liberty and justice -- all. And while -- Homeland Security Glock -- sandy hook elementary. It is also standard issue of the FBI. And around 65%. American cops. Yes what Colton Remington were to America's wild west block is to this country's violent present. That's amazing since it's only around thirty years old comes from Europe. But it's rises stark lesson in just how difficult any form of gun control could be going forward. It all begins in the eighties in the suburbs of Vienna when a guy named -- -- -- decided to move from making knives -- curtain rods. In his garage metal shop to making guns for the Austrian army. He never made a pistol before so we asked experts shooters what they wanted and came up with a game changing design. By using mostly comp is it plastic instead of steel but created a weapon that is light and tough. With a very easy trigger -- and no cumbersome -- activated safety. The first model had the capacity to shoot seventeen votes almost three times -- -- revolver as fast as you can -- bigger. And when he hit the US market in the eighties bloc made the brilliant decision first offer them to police departments. Just -- the crack cocaine wars are heating up and cops felt vulnerable. Another group the shooter early interest Hollywood prop masters who -- the futuristic look. As Paul Barrett writes in his book block the rise of America's gun shoot -- on the set of law and order were soon featuring this new Austrian import. Some of the American companies. We're a little bit more -- -- -- wanting to know what that will our guns be in the hands of good guys are only bad guys and blocked just said go ahead put it. The move and we don't care. At all political oxen and you know that is supports allowing -- -- in -- that -- when -- airport X ray machines -- -- cost more than you make it a month. Almost every part of that little speech and die -- -- is factually wrong. But when real lawmakers began voicing real fear that a undetectable super gun was sitting America. Sales skyrocket. And even when in 1991 shooting spree in Texas led to the assault weapons ban Barrett says -- saw an opportunity. When the law was enacted. It was enacted -- grandfather clause meaning that everything that existed before the date of enactment was still legal. This left -- with this huge supply. Of cream band equipment that was still legal to sell which the company then dribbled out over time the dark glamour of -- clock. Went up because. Gun aficionados resented the restrictions and said well that's the gun they don't want me to have I want two of them. Thanks to a perfectly legal trade in program -- is able to resell. Used police guns and magazines on the open market. Even at a time when cops are desperate to get semi automatic handguns off the streets a lot of departments. Cash strapped to -- looking for money. It is a way ensuring that their offices and equipped with the best and latest. Tools of the trade in a statement o'clock points out that allowing law enforcement agencies trade in firearms towards the purchase of new duty weapons is a standard practice by all major firearms manufacturers. But you have to think that that the there's a possibility that. A cop could have his old Glock point that and that's something that's exactly this way -- -- -- favor of that. Type of program but oftentimes the Saudi peninsula in the hand of the chief of police -- Bratton thinks banning buyback programs would be a political impossibility. And much to the frustration of gun control advocates just the talk of another slaughter tougher laws which -- more guns in circulation. So whichever way the political winds blow. Clock is proof that it's always so good time -- -- guns.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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