She, she! And yes, I am glad you took the time to educate. Thank you.
Oops, my mistake. I should have paid more attention to your moniker. The hints of gender are flowing from it like bullets from an AR-15 (just to keep it gun related).
I hope my post helped. Because "assault weapons" is a political term, made up to fool people who are not well versed in firearms and firearms technology, it can become very confusing as to what an assault weapon is. Is it a handgun? It could be. Is it a rifle? Possibly. It all depends upon the cosmetic features which it has.
As a previous poster mentioned, most handguns use bullets and cases designed for handguns, such as 9mm, .40 S&W, .357 magnum, .38 special, .45 ACP (auto colt pistol, which is really semiautomatic). Most rifles use bullets and cases which were designed for rifles, such as .223, 30-30, 30-06, .270, .308, etc. There are exceptions however. You can get some rifles chambered for handgun cartridges and vice versa, again, as a previous poster pointed out.
When it comes to "assault weapons", don't focus on the caliber, until you get a little further down the line on your education.
The main things to remember are, they must be semiautomics, not machine guns. Machine guns are formally called "assault rifles", not "assault weapons". They must have detachable magazine. And they cannot have more than two other cosmetic features. A folding stock, a collapsable stock, a pistol grip, a flash suppressor, a barrel shroud would be some examples of cosmetic features. They are called cosmetic features because they don't change the performance of the gun.
Here's a good example. A Colt AR-15 was labeled an assault weapon under the now expired ban. It shot the .223 round, is a semiautomatic, has a pistol grip, a flash suppressor, a bayonet lug and can have a folding stock or collapsable stock but not necessarily. It can also have a fixed stock. But, it looks "evil" to anti gunners. It looks just like the M-16, which is a full auto capable firearm. The M-16 is an "assault rifle".
The Ruger Mini-14, is also a semiautomatic rifle which has a detachable magazine and uses the .223 round. So, it should be an "assault weapon", shouldn't it? Its functionally the same as the AR-15, but it "looks" different. It has a traditional looking stock, not the pistol grip and barrel shroud stock style of the AR-15. It doesn't have a bayonet lug. It doesn't have flash suppressor.
When the assault weapons ban was put in place, companies who made AR-15's removed some cosmetic features such as the flash suppressor and bayonet mount, and they were then legal to sell. Even though these companies followed the law to a "tee", they were then accused of exploiting a "loophole" in the law which allowed them to continue to sell "assault weapons".
Are you getting the idea how crazy this ban was? Are you getting the gist of the situtation that this is about banning more guns, not about making anyone safer or reducing crime? It's politics, pure and simple.
I hope this too helps to get you educated so that you can start to dismiss some of the people who push for an assault weapons ban. The very first thing to do is play "dumb" and ask them, "what, specifically, defines an assault weapon?". Watch them go into contortions trying to define the term accurately. For some of them it's like pornography. They can't describe it but they know it when they see it.
Some of the folks who came up with the list of which firearms were banned sat down with a book of pictures of various firearms and picked out the ones they thought should be banned because those firearms "looked" too military in nature. Dianne Feinstein was amongst those lugnuts who did that.
Isn't it great when we are passing federal legislation which infringes on law abiding gun owners rights because some Senators selected some EBR's (evil black rifles) from pictures, which looked too dangerous, and banned them for sale. Great! Just friggen great!
I just thought I might also add this. Some of the guns which were banned were banned by their name, such as AR-15. Thus, when Colt removed the flash suppressor and bayonet lug, they called it a HBAR-15 so that it was not banned due to its name alone. This is one of the "loopholes" the gun banners complained about, when it was their own stupidity which banned guns by name alone, rather than certain functions.