Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Right To Bear (Stupid) Arms

In addition to giving his name to the multi-billion dollar company he founded, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has recently inadvertently given his name to a new line of colorful firearms decoration. A Wisconsin company that specializes in painting guns, typically camouflage for hunters, now offers a gun painting kit with our Mayor’s name on it. For less than $20, a gun owner can paint their rifle in a brick and graffiti pattern, or use a rainbow buffet of colors to paint handguns.

The company, Lauer Custom Weaponry, said through a press release that the bright colors are meant to help rescue workers and firing range operators locate guns more easily at nighttime or during bad weather etc. However, this doesn’t seem to apply to “Brooklyn Blue.” It rightfully took the mayor’s inflated rhetoric to task and made no apologies for its product line, though it couldn’t resist a shameful plug of its own merchandise in saying that if Bloomberg cared about the safety of police officers, he would mandate that their weapons be coated with products from their company.

No doubt the company is using its product name to criticize our mayor, who is notorious among firearms enthusiasts. Bloomberg’s contempt of the Second Amendment is legendary (his record on the First Amendment is not so hot, either). Bloomberg has railed for even tougher gun control measures, and even staged phony sting operations of lawful, out-of-state gun dealers.

While I count myself among the freedom-loving gun enthusiasts who find Bloomberg’s cockamamie anti-gun crusade disreputable, the company’s product line is a bad idea. Whatever serious uses there are for having guns colored in such a way is lost in the controversy of needling Bloomberg. Such loud colors are too easy a target, whether on the firing range or the more reckless shooting gallery of New York politics.

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