Guns: The left keeps asking why anyone needs an “assault” rifle. Here’s one reason — in 2010, a Texas teen used a rifle similar to the one used in Newtown to defend his younger sister and himself from home invaders. The left quite often exposes its raging elitism through its odious habit of asking why anyone would need the things that it doesn’t like, from guns to big homes to monster trucks. The implication is that if the elitists don’t want whatever it is, then no one should be allowed to have it — except, of course, it’s fine for the elitists themselves to live in energy-sucking mansions, hire armed bodyguards and drive around in gas-guzzling limousines and SUVs. When the left asks these questions it also reveals its blinding ignorance. Is there a single Democrat, dense celebrity or condescending journalist who is aware that “assault” rifles don’t just define their owners as red necks but also serve as practical protection? Actually the total amount of what they don’t know about firearms and crime is enough to crush them. Consider that, according to FBI data, in 2007, there were 453 homicides by rifle in the U.S. Yes, that’s too many. But compare that number to a few other methods of homicide employed that year. In 2007, there were 1,817 homicides committed with “knives or cutting instruments”; “blunt objects (clubs, hammers, etc.)” killed 674; while “personal weapons (hands, fists, feet, etc.)” were the choices in 869 homicides. The number of rifle homicides has fallen steadily since then to 323 last year, as have the other three weapon classes, though each still remains a more common choice than the rifle. In fact, when added together, knives, blunt instruments and the human body were responsible for more than nine times as many homicides as rifles in 2011. Yet no one is asking why anyone would want to own a set of steak knives, place a heavy candelabra on their mantle or have a hammer in their garage. The weapon used effectively as protection by the Texas teen was neither a club nor a fist but reportedly an AR-15, a rifle on which the .223-caliber Bushmaster used in the tragic Sandy Hook shootings was modeled. Though tagged “assault” weapons, both are merely semi-automatics, just as are many hunting rifles, and all but a handful are used legally and peacefully. But elitists on the left don’t hunt — they let someone else do their killing — so how could they know? None of this is intended to minimize the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary or any other mass shooting. It’s simply an attempt to point out that a screaming obsession over one particular weapon used less frequently to kill than knives is driven by ignorance, arrogance and a nonexistent sense of proportion.