By Lee Williams
When the hoplophobic paste-eaters at Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun agitprop factory, known as the Trace, team up with the stodgy window-lickers at the Gun Violence Archive to produce a story questioning the utility of the AR platform as a modern self-defense tool, it’s hard not to get too excited.
It’s like watching two freight trains headed toward each other on the same track. You know the results are going to be cataclysmic, but you just can’t look away. None of these halfwits have ever heard a shot fired, much less one fired in anger, or especially one fired to good effect. They know less about what makes a reliable home-defense weapon than I do about man-buns, skinny jeans, or avocado toast.
We have debunked The Trace and the Gun Violence Archive so often it’s getting old. The kids at The Trace masquerade as legitimate “journalists” when in fact they’re nothing more than well-paid anti-gun activists.
The GVA purports to track gun crimes and maintains a list of mass shootings, but their data is collected from media and even social media sources, and their stats are so inflated they’d have you believe a mass shooting occurs nearly every time someone draws from a holster.
When the two anti-gun nonprofits combine for a story, it’s bound to be something as bereft of facts as it is poorly written, and to that standard their most recent collaboration does not disappoint. The product of this collaboration is somehow even less than the sum of its parts.
A story published this week asks: “How Often Are AR-Style Rifles Used for Self-Defense?” with a subhead of “Supporters of AR-15s, often used in mass shootings and racist attacks, say they’re important for self-defense. Our analysis of Gun Violence Archive data suggests otherwise.”
You don’t say.
The story was written by one of the Trace’s senior fabulists, Jennifer Mascia, who is “currently the lead writer of the Ask The Trace series and tracks news developments on the gun beat.” Mascia has also led the Trace’s hilarious we’re journalists, not activists, propaganda campaign on social media.
Mascia claims her story was a response to a reader’s question: “Many gun owners claim to buy assault-style rifles for defense. So how many documented cases are out there where someone actually defended themselves with an assault-style rifle?”
Mascia reportedly searched the GVA’s data for the term “assault weapon,” which she said the GVA defines as “AR-15, AK-47, and all variants defined by law enforcement.” Of course, there’s no mention of whether the weapons were capable of select-fire and are therefore actual assault weapons, but that’s another story.
She started with 190 incidents, which she whittled down for various reasons. The results:
That left 51 incidents over a nine-and-a-half-year span in which legal gun owners brandished or used an AR-style rifle to defend life or property. That averages out to around five per year.
To be clear, I trust Mascia’s findings about as much as I trust the GVA data that produced the results. The whole story is a perfect exemplar of GIGO – garbage in, garbage out.
It’s noteworthy that the firearms “expert” whom Mascia turns to further beclown herself — who wrote in a CNN story opining that the AR is the last gun he’d recommend for self-defense — is none other than former Washington D.C. police officer Michael Fanone. He’s the officer who cried a lot before the January 6 Commission, if that helps jog your memory.
“I’m more familiar with the gun than most people: I own one. And one thing I know for sure is that this weapon doesn’t belong in the hands of the average civilian,” Fanone wrote of AR platform rifles in the CNN story.
The network must have liked the cut of his jib. Fanone is now a CNN contributor and is hawking a new book: “Hold the Line: The Insurrection and One Cop’s Battle for America’s Soul.” (Nancy Pelosi highly recommends it.)
Since he’s so afraid of the AR platform, I can’t help but wonder what weapon Fanone, or for that matter, Mascia, would recommend for home defense. If I had to guess, it probably has two barrels, a wooden stock and exposed hammers.
I’m somewhat familiar with the AR myself, which is why I trust it to defend my hearth and home. It’s light, accurate, and deadly, which is exactly the point, and something we should stop making allowances for.
Despite the exhortations of Bloomberg’s paid activists or weepy ex-cops, an AR is exactly what I want at hand when The Bad Man comes a-calling.
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This story is part of the Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project and is published here with their permission.