Tuesday, May 22, 2012

This one's always good for a laugh...

Apparently the police in Colton, California have struck another blow in the never-ending war to rid the streets of the scourge of fiberglass tubes.

I really hate to go into reruns, but it's
[j]ust an inert tube used to carry a missile around. Kind of like the container in which you get posters mailed to you, only olive green with some numbers stenciled on it and it once upon a time held something even cooler than a Kill Bill poster. The only way it could possibly be dangerous is if you beat somebody with it, but it would take a fair amount of beating to get anything done since it has the density and drag coefficient of one of those big kiddie whiffle bats, only more awkward to hold. Actually, if you wanted to kill someone with it probably the easiest way to do so would be to take some heavy-duty scissors, snip off a piece, and stuff it down their throat in hopes that they choke.
I don't know what it is about green plastic tubes that sends reporters and Barney Fife into a total Code Brown, but they sure do.

(H/T to Sebastian.)


North said...

I'd hate to be one of them. It is such HARD work to live life without being in the real world. You can vote to spent the rest of your life in Day Care, I guess. I'm just tired of my money being spend for adult diapers for these twits.

There are some things that you can trip over, but it doesn't stop me from walking. There are sharp things, but I having given up using my hands. There are ugly things, but I don't close my eyes to them.

I grew up and became an adult.

Anonymous said...

Good for a laugh until you are the one with a 200lb policeman kneeling on your chest yelling something...

That being said, I kinda get the local PD getting a tad nervous if they spot someone messing around with what appears to be an honest to jesus anti-tank rocket launcher from any distance except "up close and touching"

It's the huge over-reaction once they've determined it's not actually loaded that's weird.

Cincinnatus said...

They are terrified that someone in a big varicolored robe will point it at them and shout "Magic missile!"

Pointman said...

The first report I read on this showed the 13yo had the AT4 tube (they incorrectly called it a LAW) and 2 bb-guns and was being held on suspicion of possession of stolen military weapons.

I guess they missed the fact that you can pickup inert AT4 tubes on Ebay or GunBroker for a few hundred bucks.

Sadly I'm sure there are some fruits and nuts who feel safer *believing* their streets are free of dangerous fiberglass tubes... and bb-guns...

rick said...

Check out the Colton Police description of the big bust:


An aerial unit and K9's were used to detain the dangerous 13 year old with the BB gun.

A fine use of taxpayer lucre. I feel so much safer.

Anonymous said...

Wonder what would happen if a bunch of 4 ft long 4 inch schedule 40 drain-vent-waste pipe got painted green and stenciled with numbers and started turning up all over the place. Maybe they'd start impounding plumber's trucks?

Matt G said...

Anonymous 1:58, get out of my head!

I was just thinking about how, back in my youth, every 4th of July meant that I would break out the Kirby vacuum's rigid plastic-and metal tubes, and with a friend would launch bottle rockets out of it. The regular bottle rockets were pretty poor about going where they were aimed, but those (then) $1.25 "sky rockets" that were much thicker and taller (they're probably $5/apiece, now) would actually stay on track pretty well.

Given that the vaccum cleaner tube was actually reusable and would make a medium-good beatin' stick, I believe that I held the far more dangerous weapon. But mine was that pale brown color, and was marked "Kirby" rather than green with "M136 AT4".

RKN said...

Geez, have none of these people ever made a Spud Gun as kids? Misspent youth.

Sigivald said...

What first-anonymous said; I don't mind cops being a little nervous about what honestly-and-truly really looks like a rocket launcher (because it was one!), until they can see it's empty.

After that, charges sound like a CYA overreaction*.

(And likewise if someone's being Really Stupid and acting like they're trying to fire it?

Some Sort Of Official Reaction is perfectly reasonable.)

(* Now, in this case, "kid with BB gun on the roof" sounds like "imminent vandalism, stupid bastard taking pot-shots at stuff", so I don't blame them for hassling him over that so much.

And if there were recent looking BB holes in any nearby glass? Yeah, vandalism charges.

"Upon arrival, they saw a male, later identified as a 13-year-old boy, sitting on top of a roof and holding a possible rifle.

According to police, the suspect ran into a nearby apartment, which a K9 subsequently searched after authorities contacted the owner."

Sure sounds to me like a little Yout' up to light vandalism or minor assault with a BB gun and some very ill advised props.)

RL said...

I remember thinking how absurd the report was when I first saw it...As soon as they revealed that it was a 13 year old with a Crossman plinker and airsoft pistol I knew it was BS.
The report I saw said that "authorities" were "investigating" whether the deadly "rocket launcher" was "stolen" from the military and shit.

Then again I shouldn't be surprised as our local media has recently taken to calling all firearms "high-powered weapons".

Seems to me they're setting up the bed-wetting safety Nazi propaganda groundwork for the implementation of restrictions on all 'low-powered weapons' or devises that propel pellets and/or plastic or metallic BBs where the motive power comes from action of compressed gasses or the springs.

Anonymous said...

I call it "control by freak-out". It's a way of conditioning us to freak out at anything that suggests a weapon (or a free market, et al). -- Lyle

Anonymous said...

Arrested for the crime of causing a cop to freak out. Ya just don't do that sort of thing in a police state, doncha know.


K said...

You have to remember the California press is reliably left enough to cover for the cops. Certified AHole Bill Locklear got his start "raiding" gunshows for de-milled totally legal weaponry and presenting them on tables in front of the cameras. Never did I hear one peep from the journaltwits asking if the stuff was actually both harmless and legal to own.

Police state indeed.

Old NFO said...

It's Kalifornia, the land of fruits, nuts and flakes, and they all get shaken up occasionally... sigh

David said...

The problem is that those fiberglass rocket launcher tubes can easily be converted into a supersoaker...

paulinmordor said...

RKN has it right. As kids we all had our own tennis ball cannons and sometimes had little wars with them. Misspent youth, hear hear!

Once Free Man said...

We're such hyper-reactive candy-asses anymore. We can't distinguish freedom from a threat, so we retreat to all-out nanny mode as our default societal position.

Hell, any kid worth his/her salt carried a pocket knife in my day. (and I'm only 43)
Yesterday, Benton schools went in full lockdown mode and suspended two kids 10 days, expulsion pending, for having a knife.

Brad K. said...

I think the issue is that it is tough for the uninitiated to glimpse a rocket tube, and know that the safety is on, and that there is no rocket waiting to mess up someone's day.

Personally, I would think that carrying an expended weapon around in public should count as an open carry . . in a state that doesn't allow open carry, loaded or not.

In other words, it seems like a stupid prank to get YouTube video, and like all "civil disobedience" should be respected, along with serving full, appropriate jail time.

Anonymous said...

I remember once upon a time ago, looong before the intertubes, wherein the CID was nosing about looking for several LAWS tubes that had been liberated by the local urchins who were playing Army with them. Added realism and all that jazz.

They were cool toys to us, not so much to them. They were dutifully returned with admonishments not to take things that didn't belong.

David said...

My dad bought a couple old LAW tubes from a surplus store and gave them to us kids to use in our neighborhood "war" games. We loved them.

A couple guys even made foam rubber rockets to launch out of them with rubber bands. They didn't fly very far or very straight (we hadn't figured out how to put fins on them and still get them to fit in the tubes).

One day in the midst of a neighborhood war game we were divided up on two sides of the strret hiding behind cars and shooting rubberbands, corks, tennis balls, and foam rockets at each other. Suddenly we heard a siren. We all looked down the street as a patrol car came flying around the corner, lights flashing and siren wailing. The car skidded to a stop cockeyed in the middle of the street right in the middle of our war. The uniformed officer jumped out of the car and yelled "What the hell is going on here?"

We all just froze in place. He walked slowly around his car giving us all the stink-eye. When he reached the trunk of the car he inserted his key, opened the trunk and as he reached inside he yelled "Its like that huh? No one willing to talk. Well I have a way to make you talk."

Then he pulled out the coolest looking wooden Thompson style machine gun we had ever seen. The two round disks that made up the front and back of the large cylinder in the middle of the gun were covered in rubber bands.

Then turning towards the largest group of us, he yelled "You'll never take me alive." Then he started turning the crank on the back of the gun which caused a stream of rubber bands to come hurling our direction.

We stood frozen for a moment, then we all yelled and opened fire on the officer.

The fight ended when the officer's super high-tech weapon ran out of rubber bands and we mowed him down in the street.

When he got up, he introduced himself, told us he had just moved into the neighborhood a couple streets over. Then he hauled a hand-cuffed kid about our age out of the back seat, took his cuffs off, and asked us if we could take care of this dangerous criminal for a while. Then he handed the rubber band gun to his son, tossed out a large bag of rubber bands, got in his car, turned off lights and siren and drove off.

Cheyenne WY about 40 years ago - a very different time and a very different place.

BTW - that new kid had the coolest Dad ever. Especially 5 years later when he caught a couple of us doing something really stupid. He hauled our butts down to the station - fingerprinted us, took our mugshots and tossed us in the holding cell. He let us stew there for a couple hours then took us home, handed us the photos and fingerprint cards and said - I will check-in with your parents in two days. They had better have heard about tonight from you, when I do.

Tam said...


Ah, the good ol' days, before zero common sense^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h tolerance!