Bloomberg on Your Barrel
In 2006 New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg pushed through a law that bans gun coloration kits from the city, punishing anyone who uses, buys, or sells one with up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The Daily News reports that Lauer Custom Weaponry, a Wisconsin company that sells such kits, is taking revenge by offering the Bloomberg Collection of gun paints, which includes Manhattan red, Bronx rose, Brooklyn blue, Queens green, and Staten Island orange. The company also sells a stencil of Bloomberg's face to decorate gun barrels and a Bloomberg Collection EZ Camo Kit, which includes stencils to help you decorate your gun with the image of a brick wall covered by graffiti. Bloomberg had a good chuckle over it, saying, "If you take yourself too seriously, politics will kill you." Just kidding:
An outraged Bloomberg called gun-coloration kits "a tragedy in the making."
"Making a quick buck by coloring a handgun to look like a toy is craven and beneath any honest businessman," Bloomberg told the Daily News. "By coloring these guns, a real one looks like a toy, and a police officer won't be able to tell the difference."
"Imagine an officer who comes upon a teenager pointing a pink gun into a crowd. If the gun is a toy, an innocent teenager may be killed—and others, too.
"Our police officers have a hard enough job as it is, and that's why we passed a law to prevent these deadly tragedies from occurring."
The Daily News seems to accept this rationale, describing Lauer Custom Weaponry as a "company that disguises deadly firearms with bright paints and camouflage" and saying its "products were banned in the city in 2006 because they make dangerous guns look like innocent toys." Which does seem like a pretty disreputable business to be in. Not until the end of the story do we get an inkling that killing kids and cops is not the company's mission:
The bright paints were meant to help rescue workers and range masters locate guns more easily—not fool cops, [company spokesman Toby] Johnson said. They regularly sell the colors named after the boroughs and have even sold "five or six" Bloomberg camo kits, Johnson said.
Women also are big fans of the colors, he added.
"The ladies like it. They fashion their guns after their clothing," Johnson said.
[Thanks to JD for the tip.]