Tucker Carlson has responded with outrage to renewed calls to ban AR-15 rifles and ridiculed descriptions of the gun of choice for mass shooters as a “weapon of war.”
The Fox News personality dismissed calls for a ban on military-style guns during Tuesday night’s broadcast, saying the AR-15 is “the most popular self-defense rifle” in the US, while dismissing arguments from gun control advocates. The influential Conservative commentator made the remarks as Democrats pushed to reach a bipartisan agreement on gun control in response to the recent mass shootings.
The US experienced its third-deadliest school shooting in history last week when a gunman armed with an AR-15 rifle killed 19 children and two teachers at a school in Uvalde, Texas. The same type of rifle was used in the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut and other shootings.
“Democrats, [President] Joe Biden, supporters in the media are talking about banning the AR-15 – the so-called “weapons of war” actually not used by any military, but “weapons of war” were their focus,” he told Carlson.
Carlson cut to a series of clips of Biden, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, and other prominent Democrats calling for a ban on “weapons of war.”
“You wouldn’t know which end the bullet was coming out of,” Carlson said. “You don’t know anything about this subject. They don’t even know the basic crime statistics in the United States. Guns kill fewer people than fists or knives every year; there is no effort to ban knives or fists.”
PolitiFact, a Poynter Institute fact-checking initiative, found that FBI statistics show that fists and knives are responsible for more deaths than guns. But fact-checkers found that 77 percent of homicides committed in 2020 involved firearms of any kind, and less than a third did not specify the type of firearm.
Then-President Bill Clinton signed legislation in 1994 banning the AR-15 and other high-powered rifles. Gun control advocates say mass shootings have declined after the ban expired in 2004.
The AR-15 has featured prominently since the ban expired. The rifle is not used by the US military and is instead an M-16 semi-automatic that is still in service.
In 1963, gunmaker Colt was awarded a $13.5 million contract with the US military to manufacture 104,000 rifles, according to a 2017 post on the National Rifle Association blog.
Rifles similar to the AR-15 have also become popular and will be used in mass shootings after the ban expires. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, one in five firearms purchased in the United States is an AR rifle.
news week has reached out to Fox News for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/tucker-carlson-takes-offense-ar-15s-being-called-weapons-war-1711893 Tucker Carlson takes offense at AR-15s being referred to as “weapons of war.”