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Cosmetic Questions

2 9 0

I am just a little bit annoyed at my friend Mona’s column today, in which she simultaneously admits that the criteria for being counted as a so-called assault rifle are cosmetic and argues that we should nonetheless prohibit some weapons on cosmetic grounds — without ever suggesting which cosmetic grounds should be verboten or who is to be invested with the power of making his aesthetic sensibility mandatory.

Those “black guns,” as we call them, including the AR-type rifle, are unlovely appliances. My own tastes run toward Italian shotguns and traditional hunting rifles, but you want the right tool for the task. I used to know a lady who grew up on a farm in South Africa and who would sometimes say astonishing things like, “We had a dog, but he was eaten by a lion.” But here in the United States, someone who is forced to use a firearm in self-defense — as thousands are every year — probably does not have a Cape buffalo at the door and isn’t reaching for his Blaser Stradivari. (Which, if you have one, is probably what the intruder is there to steal.) People defend themselves with black guns. I don’t know very many people who take........

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