“Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck is proposing that the city require BB-gun replicas of actual firearms to be brightly colored so that police officers don’t mistake them for real weapons,” latimes.com dutifully, credulously reports. “The proposal, which the Los Angeles Police Commission will consider Tuesday, comes after two shootings involving officers and people with replica weapons, including one in which a teenager was wounded. Under the new rule, all such toys sold inLos Angeles would have the “entire exterior surface of the device white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink or bright purple.” And here’s what will happen if the proposal becomes a city ordinance . . .

1. Criminals will spray-paint their gun white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink or bright purple (the “Barney gun” is born). Guns will have gang colors. Gang bangers will paint their guns without any skill whatsoever, increasing the chances that their firearms will not function properly. On the negative side, cops will be fooled by the bright guns and not shoot when they should have shot and get shot.

2. The LA Council will also make it a crime to paint a functional firearm in white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink and bright purple. The law will be challenged on First Amendment grounds, and struck down. The inanity of the law will be fully exposed. Meanwhile, the cops will shoot the wrong people, anyway.

Are cops really that stupid? Let’s go back and remind ourselves why this is happening, other than my suspicion that LA cops simply love bright colors!

On Dec. 16, three boys were playing with the guns on North Verdugo Road in Glassell Park when two LAPD officers stopped to investigate. An officer fired at one of the boys, believing the boy’s gun was a real weapon, according to an LAPD news release. The boy was shot in the torso and underwent surgery.

Did the officer feel threatened? Well, of course he did! Otherwise he wouldn’t have shot the lad, would he? Ipso facto. Shooter/Capt. David Lindsay:

“It’s a consistent issue for us. I saw the guns the kids had that night from a distance of 3 or 4 feet; when you first look at them, they look identical to a particular style of handgun, a Beretta 92F,” Lindsay said in an interview earlier this year. He has since been transferred to a different position.

And in case you think I’m besmirching the good name of the LA PD, characterizing them as trigger-happy LEOs, well . . .

[Los Angeles City Councilman Greig] Smith, who is also an LAPD reserve officer, said the guns pose a problem for police because officers typically have only seconds to react in a situation in which they believe a subject is armed. He considered a citywide ban of the replica weapons earlier this year.

“If you see something that just looks like a gun, you’re going to shoot,” Smith said after the Glassell Park shooting. “That’s what you’re trained to do. Your mind doesn’t have enough time to process whether it’s a real gun or a fake gun.”

But now, with brightly-colored airguns, they will! For a while. Maybe. I wonder how much money they’ll spend enforcing the law, and whether that money could have been better spent doing something more like policing and less like Jackass?

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19 Responses to Trigger-Happy LA Cops Want Airguns to be White, Bright Red, Bright Orange, Bright Yellow, Bright Green, Bright Blue, Bright Pink or Bright Purple

    • That’s right. The color coding is foolish. Real guns will be made to look like the toys.

      The solutions are two, 1. treat them all like real guns, background checks, licensing of owners and registration of guns (I know I’m getting ahead of myself, we don’t even have that for real weapons YET), or 2. ban ’em.

  1. cops are proven idiots, why is it that soldiers in combat zones are required to wait till they start getting shot at before they can fire, while cops can just shoot at the first sight of a weapon without the intent of threat?

  2. I’m really starting to get tired of this crap where they treat guns as if they are a privilege to own, its a right, and painting my gun what ever damn color I please is just like me doing it to my car, its my right to own it and its my property.

  3. I am tried of cops acting and thinking that they are the only one that should have guns. Here in California I have to buy off a list for most things and wait 10 days. Cops can order anyting and walk out the door with it. This need to change.

    • Wrong. My friend thats a cop in LA cant buy a ar15 (ungimped) or posses a 30rd mag without being authorized by the department. Gun shops require some shit signed by the chief if he wants to get it.

  4. Criminals WILL paint their guns bright colors, but it won’t be the first thing that happens after this law takes effect: The first thing that happens will be kids painting their stupid pink toy guns black and brown and gray. They already do it as a matter of course with the flourescent orange muzzles in place today, just like we did when they first started appearing 2o years ago.

    So we’ll have kids running around with “real” looking guns and criminals running around with “toy” looking guns and some from both sides with neither or either or both. Yeah this will all work out just fine in the end. Because clearly its the color of the gun and absolutely no other factor(s) that brought the above mentioned tragedy to bear so lets not even look for any.

    • “So we’ll have kids running around with “real” looking guns and criminals running around with “toy” looking guns” …

      and cops who will be happy to punctuate either.

      • Exactly, you’re creating a whole new class of criminal out of 9 year old boys who just want to emulate, in their imaginations, the “heros” they see on tv and movie screens. Or worse yet, you’re literally lumping them into the same group of real criminals when they ultimately charged with the same crime; Unlawfully Altering the Appearance of a Firearm through Technicolor

    • When I was a kid, I got one of those yellow plastic toys that looked like an Uzi. Not having access to paint (or desire to get dirty) I wrapped the entire thing in electrical tape. Point being: Kids WILL paint or cover their “guns” to look real.

      And it won’t matter anyway. Even if a toy, Airsoft, or paintball gun is a bright color, if it has the general shape of a “real” gun, a cop is going to shoot the poor fellow holding that “toy.” The guy is still going to die, and the only result of a law such as this is that cops are going to lose their jobs, and lawyers are going to get richer.

      I won’t weigh in on the “trigger happy” labels some others like to place on cops in departments with less-than-sterling reputations except to say this: If I was a cop, and I had a run-in with a suspect holding what looked like a firearm and it was pointed in my direction–no matter what color it was–I would be inclined to pull the trigger on him/her. I’m not going to risk my life for a suspect because some stupid law says that “toy guns” are supposed be certain colors and “real guns” are supposed to be other colors. Point a gun in my direction and you’ve forfeit your life. (No offense to those of you that have negative impressions of police officers. I’m just putting myself in their shoes this time, and I’m calling it as I see it.)

  5. And aspiring criminals will walk into the local hardware store, buy a can of black enamel, and nothing will have changed. Stupidity in action, way to go Los Angeles!

  6. That’s ridiculous! Everyone who has a real firearm will be spray painting theirs and no one will know which is real and which is fake! I say, just leave the orange tip on and stay off of the streets with airguns. If you really have to walk around town with your airgun, then you should attract attention. After all, depending on which airgun you have and the BB you use, it could really hurt someone.

  7. Crazy! Now people owning real firearms are going to be painting their guns to look like airguns! I suggest leaving the orange tips on and stop walking around the streets with your airgun!

  8. Good Lord… I swear, this is just crazy and stupid. I won’t say anything about the “If someone points a gun at you” thing. That is exactly what I would do. Someone points a gun at me and out comes the Baby Eagle. Now then, is it just me, or is the color schemes of Bright Red, Bright Orange, Bright Yellow, Bright Green, Bright Blue, Bright Pink and Bright Purple a little too gay pride flag-ish? I mean, think about it. And really, y u hatin on the lil kids, homie? And if they had made a law saying that all airguns are to be that color, then what do you think the gang members and criminals are gunna do? PAINT THEIR GUNS! P.s., My first airsoft gun was a Stinger P-311 by Crosman, and the first thing I did was take out the saw of my NRA tool and cut the orange tip off! I also sanded off all the logos and trademarks and signs and signatures and warnings, and re-painted it Silver with Brown hand grips, just like a real Colt M-1911A-1. Kids will paint their airsoft guns, it is inevitable.

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