101 Reasons Why You NEED an “Assault Weapon”


(When I was Counsel to the NJ Coalition of Sportsman I wrote this piece for the April, 1991 issue of The Guardian, which was the group’s newsletter. It was later published by Harper’s magazine. Here is an updated version as the issue is being pushed again by the blood-dancing anti-gunners.)

A question we are all tired of hearing in the so-called “debate” over so-called “assault weapons” is: “Why does anybody need one?” Here is the answer.

You need an assault weapon –

  1. to help continue the American tradition of citizen/soldier.
  2. for recreation.
  3. to collect military small arms.
  4. to get quick extra shots at more game while hunting.
  5. to get quick extra shots at the same game while hunting.
  6. for more fun plinking.
  7. to defend against a street gang.
  8. to defend against mob violence.
  9. to defend against looters.
  10. to shoot in a Civilian Marksmanship Program competition.
  11. to shoot in an “Action Rifle” or “Practical Rifle” target match.
  12. to assist the police in an emergency (e.g. 1966 Texas Tower Sniper incident, citizens assisted with M1’s).
  13. to help defend the country from a foreign invasion.
  14. to help defend the country from an internal takeover.
  15. to help the firearms industry remain economically strong.
  16. to pay the federal tax on guns that goes to aid wildlife.
  17. to encourage further research into new firearm technology.
  18. to save time while shooting.
  19. to have increased reliability in functioning.
  20. to have a longer-lasting firearm.
  21. to have a more affordable firearm.
  22. to have an easier-to-manufacture firearm.
  23. to have an easier-to-repair firearm.
  24. to have an easier-to-take-apart-and-clean firearm.
  25. to have a more versatile firearm.
  26. to own a highly weather-resistant firearm.
  27. to appreciate the evolution of firearm technology.
  28. to defend your business.
  29. to defend your home.
  30. to defend your boat.
  31. to defend your camp.
  32. to defend your ranch.
  33. to defend your farm.
  34. to defend your family.
  35. to have reduced recoil when shooting.
  36. as an investment.
  37. as a military souvenir.
  38. as a hedge against inflation.
  39. because criminals statistically prefer revolvers over all other firearms.
  40. to have a more psychologically intimidating firearm. (often the mere presence of a firearm will stop a crime)
  41. to own a firearm least likely to be used in a crime.(Less than 1% are assault firearms.)
  42. to own a firearm that purposely functions slower than other firearms thereby reducing recoil. (e.g. Remington 1100.)
  43. to own a firearm used in Olympic competition.
  44. to appreciate the mechanical genius of firearm designers.
  45. to have a firearm that uses external magazines.
  46. to shoot at the National Matches at Camp Perry.
  47. to reject anti-gun bias. 48. to challenge “Big Brotherism.”
  48. to protect yourself against a pack of feral dogs.
  49. to own a firearm better for the physically handicapped.
  50. to save all firearms by not giving in to “salami” tactics.
  51. to do trick shooting (e.g., multiple aerial targets).
  52. to shoot military ammunition. (Inexpensive surplus.)
  53. to be part of an armed populous, creating a tactical disadvantage for any potential enemies.
  54. to familiarize yourself with your country’s military rifle.
  55. to familiarize yourself with a foreign country’s military rifle.
  56. because they are interesting.
  57. to hang on your wall.
  58. to shoot clay targets.
  59. to shoot paper targets.
  60. to shoot metallic silhouettes.
  61. to exercise a Constitutional right.
  62. to exercise a natural right.
  63. to exercise a civil right.
  64. to exercise a fundamental right.
  65. to exercise an inalienable right.
  66. to exercise a human right.
  67. to defend yourself after a New York City-type blackout.
  68. to defend yourself against a Miami- or Newark-type riot.
  69. to defend yourself after a St. Croix-type hurricane in which both officers and escaped prisoners have run amok.
  70. to avoid a “Tiananmen Square” in the U.S.
  71. to own a firearm “in common use” and therefore protected under Supreme Court decisions such as Heller.
  72. to protect livestock from predators.
  73. to show support for political ideals of the founding fathers.
  74. to own a firearm designed to wound rather than kill (according to the Director of the Wound Ballistics Laboratory).
  75. to own a firearm not readily convertible to full automatic.
  76. to own a firearm with that “shoulder thingy that goes up.”
  77. to own a “state-of-the-art” firearm (e.g. FN SCAR).
  78. to own a “turn-of-the-century” firearm (e.g. Borchardt).
  79. because it is more pleasant to shoot (lighter and less recoil).
  80. because your other firearms may be banned next.
  81. to own a firearm that is difficult to conceal.
  82. to own a firearm that the media glamorizes.
  83. to own a firearm that might be banned.
  84. to own a firearm that is banned.
  85. to own a firearm that is no frills and practical in design.
  86. to own one of the most mechanically-safe firearms. (e.g., Uzi).
  87. to own a firearm that is a “work of art.”
  88. to own a Valmet M-76, which the BATFE says has no sporting use.
  89. to own a Valmet Hunter, which the BATFE says has sporting use.
  90. to own a firearm that made history (e.g., M-1 Carbine).
  91. to shoot a firearm that made history.
  92. to own a firearm that can be dropped and still function.
  93. to own a firearm that can be coated in mud and still function.
  94. to own a firearm that can be dunked in water and function.
  95. to own a firearm that can be frozen solid and still function.
  96. to own a firearm that can be buried in sand and still function.
  97. to be a prepared member of the unorganized militia as defined in the US Code (10 US Code Sect. 311 (a)).
  98. to distinguish between an object and its misuse.
  99. because you believe in freedom.

101.because YOU say you need one.


In America, an individual’s need should not be determined by the State.

About The Author

Evan Nappen, Esq.

Known as “America’s Gun Lawyer,” Evan Nappen is above all a tireless defender of justice. Author of eight bestselling books and countless articles on firearms, knives, and weapons history and the law, a certified Firearms Instructor, and avid weapons collector and historian with a vast collection that spans almost five decades — it’s no wonder he’s become the trusted, go-to expert for local, industry and national media outlets.

Regularly called on by radio, television and online news media for his commentary and expertise on breaking news Evan has appeared countless shows including Fox News – Judge Jeanine, CNN – Lou Dobbs, Court TV, Real Talk on WOR, It’s Your Call with Lyn Doyle, Tom Gresham’s Gun Talk, and Cam & Company/NRA News.

As a creative arts consultant, he also lends his weapons law and historical expertise to an elite, discerning cadre of movie and television producers and directors, and novelists.

He also provides expert testimony and consultations for defense attorneys across America.

  • evan@evannappen.com

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