In a move that would make Chesty Puller himself spin in his grave, California Attorney General Rob Banta hired Colonel (Ret.) Craig Tucker to act as an “expert witness” to defend the Golden State’s “assault weapon ban.”
The controversial ban is on the verge of being overturned by a federal judge, and liberal lawmakers are throwing everything they have to stop this from happening, including paying $200 per hour to a 25-year USMC veteran to spout lies about the AR-15. Colonel Tucker paints a picture of the civilian AR-15 as a lethal “weapon of war” and states that its various cosmetic attachments targeted by the assault weapons ban only serve to “enhance its lethality.”
Colonel Tucker served as an infantry officer for 25 years and commanded USMC and Army units in Iraq from February 2004 to April 2005. His lengthy career and training gave him experience with various US weapon systems such as the M1911, the M16, the M4, and the “Berretta (sic) .9m (sic) semi-automatic pistol.” However, no records anywhere indicate that there has ever been such a thing as a 900mm pistol.
The colonel calls the AR-15 an “offensive combat weapon system” that has “no legitimate use in self-defense.” He goes on to describe the awesome power of the .223 cartridge in graphic detail, stating the round “tumbles upon hitting flesh and rips thru (sic) the human body. A single round is capable of severing the upper body from the lower body, or decapitation.”
Apparently, the devastating, torso-shattering .223 is so powerful that the Army considered it underpowered and is looking into replacing it with 6.8mm in its new weapon system because its awesome, raw killing power was so immense it was found to be incapable of penetrating enemy body armor.
Detachable magazines were also subject to the colonel’s expert observations. He stated that they “improve the killing efficiency of automatic rifles” since they allow rapid magazine changes in combat and significantly reduce reload time. He goes on to say that “during intense combat, the detachable magazine provides a rifleman the capability to fire 120 rounds on semi-automatic in three minutes at a high-sustained rate of 45 rounds per minute. In a civilian self-defense context, by contrast, an individual would not have a need for such a high rate of fire.”
Due to the ban on evil, evil detachable magazines, Californians have been forced to turn from their “weapons of war” and their detachable magazines to… weapons actually used in wars. The SKS and M1 Garand have always been California-legal, and both are loaded with clips instead of magazines. These rifles are perfectly capable of “rapid reloads,” and in some cases, a well-trained M1 shooter can load faster with a clip than his M1A/M14 counterpart with a magazine.
Besides magazines, Colonel Tucker decried the use of pistol grips, saying they “increase the killing efficiency of automatic rifles” because “absent any pistol grip, a semi-automatic rifle would be difficult to operate when fired rapidly, as the barrel would seesaw up and down with each shot fired in succession. Second, the pistol grip functions as a hand rest to reduce hand/finger fatigue during long combat engagements.”
Yes, the mighty pistol grip “increases the killing efficiency of all automatic rifles,” except the AR-15 isn’t automatic and only fires on semi-auto. Even if Colonel Tucker’s statement was true, there are a number of guns without pistol grips that are much more lethal than an AR-15. The .308 round of the M1A has more penetrating power than the AR-15’s .223, and so does the Ruger Mini 30’s 7.62x39mm. Despite the fact these two rifles have more power than the AR-15, they’re not villainized because they’re not “scary black war rifles.”
But that doesn’t matter in Colonel Tucker’s magical world where all long guns are scary. The colonel calls the AR-15 a weapon that is strictly to be used for offense and never for defense. In his opinion, the AR-15 is just like the M4, and “both weapons are designed to kill as many people as possible, as efficiently as possible, and serve no legitimate sporting of self-defense purpose.” To Colonel Tucker, 3-gun competitions would be illegitimate and dangerous, hunting would only be done with single-shot shotguns, and every civilian in the United States would be forced to defend their families with nothing more than a Glock because he believes the AR-15 can only be used for offensive combat.
The only difference between self-defense in combat and self-defense in combat and self-defense as a civilian are the restrictions imposed by the Geneva Convention and the Hague. The latter convention prohibited the use in international warfare of bullets that easily “expand or flatten easily in the human body,” yet these are precisely the types of rounds used in home defense. The greater the expansion of a round and the less chance it can penetrate through a wall, the better it is for home defense. The civilian’s decision to defend himself and his family is protected by the Second Amendment, and as long as criminals have access to AR-15s then so should the people they intend to victimize.
In the opinion of this writer, Colonel Tucker, who was relieved in 2005 for an “inappropriate relationship” with a junior officer, is in violation of his oath, in which he swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and he should be ashamed to have sold out for $200 an hour.