US District Court Judge Roger Benitez knew exactly what he was doing when he crafted his opinion ruling that California’s “assault weapons” ban is unconstitutional. Declaring the ban a “failed experiment,” he now famously trolled gun controllers began his opinion about the dreaded weapons this way . . .

Like the Swiss Army knife, the popular AR-15 rifle is a perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment. Good for both home and battle, the AR-15 is the kind of versatile gun that lies at the intersection of the kinds of firearms protected under District of Columbia v. Heller and United States v. Miller. Yet, the State of California makes it a crime to have an AR-15 type rifle. Therefore, this court declares the California statutes to be unconstitutional.

All the usual suspects’ heads popped like overfilled balloons as they expressed their abject horror at the jurist’s comparison of a harmless little pocket tool and a deadly black weapon of war like the AR-15. Never mind that, between the two, the Swiss Army knife is the only one that’s ever been issued to the military.

Anyway, the performative outrage was furious and immediate.

Whatever you do, don’t tell any of these incensed hoplophobes that knives kill about four times as many people in the US every year as all types of rifles, of which “assault weapons” are only a subset.

Statistic: Number of murder victims in the United States in 2019, by weapon used | StatistaBut wait! Imagine if we lived in a civilized society…one where civilian firearms ownership was banned because…common sense. You know, the gun-free utopia about which Shannon Watts dreams every night. Then we’d all be safe and free from the threat or violent crime and indiscriminate attacks while we work, shop, and go to school. Wouldn’t we?

Well, no. It seems that wherever there are people, there are crazies, psychos, and other broken individuals bent on killing others. Take, for example, China.

Over the weekend, six people were killed and 14 injured after a knife-wielding man stabbed passersby on a pedestrian shopping street in the eastern Chinese city of Anqing. Videos circulating on social media show wounded pedestrians lying on the pavement, covered in blood.

Police quickly arrived at the scene and arrested the suspect, a 25-year-old unemployed man who was seeking to “vent anger over family troubles and pessimism,” according to a local government statement.

Sound familiar? The weekend’s mass stabbing was hardly an isolated incident in the Middle Kingdom.

The incident is the latest among a spate of public attacks in China in recent months. With guns strictly controlled and out of reach for ordinary people, knives have become the most common weapon used in such atrocities.

In April, two children were killed when a knife-wielding man entered a kindergarten in southern China. An additional 14 children and two teachers were wounded, according to state news agency Xinhua. The police said the suspect had a history of schizophrenia — a serious mental illness characterized by symptoms of psychosis.

In December, another mass stabbing in a small city in northeastern Liaoning province left seven people dead and another seven injured. State media reported the 62-year-old suspect was socially withdrawn after losing his son and getting divorced, and carried out the attack to express his “dissatisfaction towards society.”

That sounds about as coherent as any of the justifications spouted by…gee, take your pick of virtually any mass shooter who didn’t kill himself before being captured. It’s almost as if, no matter what laws you put in place or how you attempt to disarm the populace, wackos will always find a way to wreak havoc.

The Founders ensured Americans would have the right to keep and bear arms as a check on potentially overreaching, tyrannical government. It was necessary, after all, to the security of a free state. Duh.

Armed self-defense — the ability to protect yourself and your family — wasn’t mentioned in the 2A because it was so jaw-droppingly obvious. A given. A natural right so clear that there was no need to waste ink laying that out on parchment.

That’s why we’re (mostly) free in this country to own the best tools to protect ourselves and ensure that government remains at least minimally respectful of our rights…unlike those stuck living under authoritarian iron rule in China. And as handy as they are, we’re not talking about Swiss Army knives here.

That right to keep and bear arms — like all freedoms — comes with tradeoffs. It means that criminals and crazies will be able to use those tools to do their worst. But it also means that Joe and Jane Q. Public will be able to defend themselves…far more often than those tools are used to commit crimes and take lives.

That’s a tradeoff a majority of Americans are only too happy to live with.

 

 

44 COMMENTS

  1. It doesn’t matter how we describe it, defend it or try to address the facts, the gun-banning traitors will ignore us. It’s an agenda of control.

    • “Overturning CA’s assault weapon ban and comparing an AR-15 to a SWISS ARMY KNIFE is a disgusting slap in the face to those who have lost loved ones to gun violence.”

      – Gavin Newsom

      I’m still waiting for the good Governor to provide his supporting evidence of all the AR-15s that have been used in “gun violence”, and how that compares as a percentage to all the abortions of innocent babies he’s supported.

      • It is the Jim Crow Gun Control element in Every Gun Control Zealot that gets them bent out of shape. The thought of the citizenry owning firearms is no different than the thought plantation owners shared about Blacks owning firearms.

        If today’s Gun Control Zealots could they would get whips and beat the idea of owning guns out of the citizenry like their ancestors did to slaves who stepped out of line. So when you see Gun Control Zealots acting all nasty nice see them for what they really are…Whip Crackers.

        • Not true for Gavin. For him, it is personal. He says a relative (uncle I think) threatened hims with a handgun before committing suicide in front of him. After that, he has sought to ban all firearms. As we surmised when he was elected, he will sign any gun control bill put in front of him.

        • RE: “That right to keep and bear arms — like all freedoms — comes with tradeoffs. It means that criminals and crazies will be able to use those tools to do their worst. But it also means that Joe and Jane Q. Public will be able to defend themselves…far more often than those tools are used to commit crimes and take lives.
          That’s a tradeoff a majority of Americans are only too happy to live with.”

          There are Two Clear Sides to this coin and there is no gray area to complicate matters with any tradeoff logic. The word association doesn’t fly and does more harm than good.

          When it comes to a diabolical blood red agenda rooted deep in racism and genocide like history confirms Gun Control to be and that many people forget, ignore or are just plain history illiterate…Viable Logic targets Gun Control and viable logic proceeds to make it clear, “The Second Amendment is not for sale, trade or rent.”

          The word “tradeoff” is not found anywhere in the United States Constitution, Bill of Rights or is it found in the Oath to Protect and Defend the Constitution of The United States from enemies both foreign and domestic.

  2. the ONLY ONES that are against firearms are the totalitarians ,communist ,marxists, and democrat fools. ITIS ALL ABOUT TOTAL CONTROL OF SOCIETY.

  3. It’s not about safety, Dan. The hoplophobes don’t give two beans about the victims. It’s about disarming a free people to enslave them. That’s it.

    “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” – William Pitt

  4. Now it’s a harmless little pocket tool?
    Tell that to all the kids expelled for forgetting their swiss army knives, leathermans and scout knives in their packs.

    • Wow they never expelled anyone in my Cub Scout pack 398. Knife or not…you sure that ain’t the Aryan scouts?!? 😏

      • A person that I knew piss me off so I threw some box cutters and a couple of steak knives in the bed of his sons pickup truck. I then called the school and told them that my son was worried because the other boy had knives in his truck. The kid was the valedictorian and was kicked out three months before graduation.

        • You and IHAQ will get along swimmingly, Karen. The two of you are like peas in a cowardly pod.

        • “The two of you are like peas in a cowardly pod.”

          And if anyone knows about being a ‘cowardly pod’, it’s you, son.

          The little boy that hides like a coward behind a constantly-changing username.

          A very little boy, if you know what I mean… 😉

      • The irony is that as soon as kids grow up, they can go right on ahead and carry those tools and blades anyway. As I write this, I have a multi-tool (with a blade) in my pocket and two folding knives on my hip. For years. As do most of the men I see throughout my day at work, home, church, store, etc. And as do my adult sons.

        Way to go, public schools…you’re really preparing our kids for the real adult world. [/sarc]

        • You’re brave. I’d also like to add that you contribute a lot to the forum. /sarc

        • “I’d also like to add that you contribute a lot to the forum.”

          Unlike you, he does contribute to the general discussions in TTAG.

          The only thing you do here is poorly-executed attempts at insults.

          Good Lord, it must really *suck* to be you… *snicker* 😉

  5. The responses are a rhetorical bait-and-switch. Benitez wasn’t comparing the AR-15 to a knife’s lethality, only to its versatility, as was made clear by his wording. This sort of bad-faith tactic is why civil debate is crap. When you point out the above distinction, they can just fall back on HOW DARE YOU SAY ARs ARE AS HARMLESS AS PEN KNIVES.

    • That strategy works well for Democrats since they pander to low IQ, emotionally driven people that hate science.

    • Correct. It was not a comparison, it was an analogy. And I would bet dollars to donuts that most anti-gunners were so triggered they never read beyond that introductory paragraph. That includes the AAG who argued the case, since the decision pretty much tosses the weak evidence that the State submitted at trial.

  6. The comment about a Swiss army knife was about how many different functions and configurations the AR-15 has. The AR-15 has become a multipurpose gun. The only gun it can not become is a pocket pistol.

    • “The only gun it can not become is a pocket pistol.”

      It does the next-best thing, a compact SBR that is outstanding at home defense with a can to keep the owner’s hearing intact…

  7. knives kill about four times as many people in the US every year as all types of rifles

    That’s true, because 4 x 0 = 0. Knives have never killed anyone, nor have firearms. Knives and firearms are tools that some humans have used to kill other humans.

  8. Murder by rifle: 364. Ar-15’s are a subset of this.

    Death by vehicle driven under the influence: 10,000+

    Where’s the outrage?

      • No one cares about the tiny number of deaths involved. *MANY* people think it is extremely important to disarm the populace through any means necessary, prior to beginning to thin the herd by reducing quantities of those who will not accept mah authoriteh!

  9. “To compare AR-15s to a Swiss Army Knife is a slap in the face to the survivors who’ve had their communities torn apart by gun violence.”

    I think he means communities torn apart by Democrat leadership. My community is doing just fine, but we don’t have Democrats in charge. As CommieLa would say, let’s examine the root cause (hint: it ain’t guns).

  10. If you live behind the wire. You do so by choice. 100’s of thousand have risked everything including their lives to escape Communist Totalitarianism as well many other Tyrannical Regimes. If you aren’t willing to leave regardless of the Circumstances you are chosen to live with the Consequences. Life is full of choices and consequences. Choose what works for you just don’t complain about the consequences.

  11. Since the gun grabbers don’t like the ruling, they are going to fixate on the wording used by the judge, rather than admit they are wrong. The AR, type rifle is no more or no less lethal, or dangerous than the intent or purpose of the person using it. My 1930’s vintage Browning rifle uses the same basic gas system as an AR. And fires a more powerful 30-06 cartridge. But, because it is in a traditional wood stock, and uses a 5 round magazine, but, can use the BAR 20 round mag, it is seen as a harmless, or less scary hunting rifle.
    Just once, I wish the gun grabbers would admit the truth. They are afraid of what they might do with any gun, and therefore, they fear what someone else might do. So, by their logic, no one should have a gun.

    • Similarly, the M1 is not restricted because it does not have a detachable magazine, the N1 Carbine is exempt because it qualifies as a “featureless” rifle, the Ruger Minis for the same reason, as well as all of the ARs out there that have been converted to fixed mags (for which there are work arounds) or “featureless” rifles (no flash hider, no pistol grip, no collapsible stock. The point of the original law and all the amendments that followed were to eliminate AR and AK style rifles. The effort failed miserably, not just because of inventiveness, but because the laws allowed any number of semi automatic rifles to remain in civilian hands with no showing that the prohibited rifles were in any way more or less dangerous than the permitted rifles, and no showing that the prohibition of some rifles had any effect on the crime rate, as Judge Benitez so forcefully recognized. If I were top hazard a WAG, I suspect that there are five to ten times as many legal but unregistered semiauto rifles in California as there are RAWs.

      • “…the N1 Carbine is exempt because it qualifies as a “featureless” rifle, the Ruger Minis for the same reason,…”

        I thought in Cali a Mini-14 qualifies as restricted since it has a detachable magazine.

        Here it is –

        “A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that has a fixed magazine with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds.”

        The Mini-14 fully qualifies as 20 and 30 round magazines are obtainable…

  12. The Second Amendment is for the express purpose of having lethal weapons. This toning down of what is and what isnt is putting restrictions on The Right to keep and Bear Arms, Shall Not Be Infringed .

  13. The AR-15 is to the Swiss Army knife, like the M-16 is to the M-9 bayonet. Two are civilian weapons, and two are military. Just think how bad the casualty count would be, if our military was to go into battle with AR-15’s.

    • The M-4 and M-16 ARE AR-15 rifles. The former are just MILITARY designations for particular configurations. And if the military was limited to semi automatic fire there would be almost ZERO change in doctrine or effectiveness. If full auto fire is so effectiveness why were the majority of rifles configured for 3 round bursts.

      • The reason for 3 round burst switch was that previous Nam studies revealed that due to muzzle rise–especially in 14’s fired on full auto, because of the the lack of enough ‘training’ for effective full auto personal rifle firing, which the military didn’t bother with in basic T because if the proper use of machine-gun firepower with sustained capacity and heavy suppression was needed in combat, the gap was immediately filled with a usually ‘seasoned’ troop using the the M-60, Browning .30 or .50 BMG, all belt fed, and the bad habit of most soldiers thinking full auto blasting through their magazines was better with indiscriminate target focus trying to imitate the squad machine guns and wasting most of their shots, which also contibuted too much to the dirty little secret of collateral friendly casualties, that they tried to cover up for a long time, also contributed to to the military use of 3 shot bursts for each trigger pull.

        Yes, in Nam and certain other tactical applications, individual weapon full auto fire didn’t mean too much, accurate shot placement and tactics were more important…

        Hoever heavy sustained Machinegun fire power was allways the brass-knuckles in the bar room brawl. O’ Maxim invented an amazing game changer, and Browning enhanced it to where they had to ban water-cooled versions for a while because it made warfare ‘unfair’ if that’s rises to the oxymoronic level? Sort of like ‘war crimes’. Isn’t ALL fucking warfare essentially a crime against humanity?

        So, George, in today’s warfare it probably wouldn’t make too much of a difference if individual infantry soldiers’ primary weapon was semi-auto.

        Not with all the immediate backup super firepower inventory, we have today on the battlefield. In fact, with some of these fast reset semi-auto triggers today that virtually imitate a decent rate of suppressive firepower, it may even be better in certain combat environments because it would save a significant percentage over the logn run on ammo wasting and help supply logistics and accidental collateral damage?

  14. “Arms”, as mentioned in the 2A, covers an unbelievable range of objects that have specifically been created over the past 50,000 years to wreak death and destruction on other objects ( stationary or mobile), such as trees, bears, rats, and yes even people. Violence is not going away anytime soon, and that’s a good thing. Without it, there would be NO life on this planet or any other – not even bacteria. People think progress (social and technological) is achieved thru peaceful contemplation and cooperation. Nothing could be further from the truth. Progress requires violence – biological, social, and technological violence. Some of the more recent “weapons of war”, were spears and Atlatls, stone knives, and OMG the FEARSOME TOMAHAWK!

    “In the dimness of the shadows
    where we hairy heathens warred
    I can taste in thought the life blood
    We used teeth before the sword. (Patton)”

    So is the hoplophobes plan then to ban everything? It would seem so.

    • Ahh, Gunny G..well said! Combat Vets are my favorite philosophers. Patton was one of my favorite Generals of all time. Too bad the Deep State under Ike took him out before his life’s culmination of Historic Geatness could be realized. He would have made a great POTUS. He certainly would have nipped the future Marxist Communist threat that leached on to us today to suck out the blood of liberty in American.. squarely in the balls.

      And, yes, it is the obscenely perverted obsessive-compulsive madness to satiate their communst agenda, they began, decades ago, to ‘ban’ our libertarian behavior and egalitarian legacy of justice and sovereignty. Then they insidiously created overwhelming agenda purposed ‘laws’, mandates, and population controls to eventually make everyone a criminal, subject to summary tyrannical control as ‘required’. And then they surrepiticiously Hi-jacked our Constitutional Republic political system through insidious socialist education, mass mind-control, and ultimately, banal voting bribery.

      So all that remains is for them to ‘ban’, contain, prohibit, and ultimately confiscate any means of physical resistance to the completion of their insane Totalitarian agenda.

      Nothing is ever as it ‘seems’. But some things are more than clearly obvious…because they are happening in real time.

  15. UUUM , AR RIFLE FOR HUNTING GAME , NOT NEEDED OR SHOULD BE USED / ALLOWED ON THA STREET .
    SWISS POCKET USED TO REMOVE SPLINTERS , YEAAAA GOOD FOR THAT .

    • In some parts of Texas I think they re-started heavy ‘Chem-trailing’ again, only this time adding some kind of mind-altering nano-dust compound in addition to the autism and Alzheimers causing aluominum- barium base compound to confuse and cause excessive chronic brain farting among the population?

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