Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Friday, September 25, 2009

'Look like' an 'assault weapon'?

Oleg Volk photo

At long last, I am going to make an effort to get back to posting more than just blurbs for my St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner columns.

Today's topic was inspired by this article about a 10-year-old boy who attempted to shoplift an "assault weapon" kit from a gun store.
Iowa City police say a 10-year-old boy who tried to steal a kit that makes a rifle look like an assault rifle may have thought he was stealing an actual gun.

[ . . . ]

The conversion kit includes a bayonet but no gun. Buyers use the kits to make ordinary rifles look like assault weapons.
The focus of the article, clearly, is on the young age of the aspiring master criminal, and the fact that he supposedly believed he was stealing an entire gun, rather than parts to modify one.

My focus, though, is elsewhere. I cannot help but note that the article says--twice--that the kit was designed to make a rifle look like an "assault weapon" (a term the article incorrectly uses interchangeably with assault rifle).

That, of course, is simply another piece of proof (as if one were needed) of journalistic ignorance about firearms. So-called "assault weapons" are defined by cosmetic features, rather than mechanical ones. I don't know the details of the kit, beyond the fact that it included a bayonet, but it presumably also included a folding stock with a pistol grip, and/or a flash-hider, etc. A semi-automatic, detachable magazine-fed rifle equipped with two or more of those things would not merely look like a so-called "assault weapon," it would become what was once defined as one.

Coming out and saying that, though, would perhaps make it too obvious that what distinguishes a politically correct rifle from an "assault weapon" is merely a few simple accessories, thus making bans too obviously ridiculous.

Perhaps the article's wording was not based on ignorance after all, and was instead a deliberate distortion.