Review: Come and Take It: The Gun Printer's Guide to Thinking Free

Book cover to Come and Take It: The Gun Printer's Guide to Thinking Free by Cody Wilson
Come and Take It: The Gun Printer's Guide to Thinking Free by Cody Wilson
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Wilson gained fame and notoriety as one of the earliest, if not the first person to design and use a 3D printed gun. This book tells his account of how it went from idea to manifestation along with the challenges he ran into, the support (financial, intellectual, technical), and the ideologies that fueled his thinking as he moves through the process. On its face-value, the book has something to offer many folks about understanding both the legal issues and concerns around 3D printing of guns as well as 1st and 2nd Amendment rights. Even learning about how and why the 3D gun was created could be quite valuable but Wilson's prose are too often pseudo-literary flourishes attempting to show how brilliant and above the rest of humanity he is--of course, this comes to clash with his self-described crypto-anarchism (nothing says anarchist like publishing with a major publisher that is going to make dollars while he'll make pennies from sales--that seems to be really sticking it to the system, right?). That's what is ultimately insufferable about this book. He is so invested in himself that he makes numerous moments seem like a bad mix between B-movie noir (his need to tell the body shape of every woman he encounters) to the paranoid ramblings of a Philip K. Dick character. It's these distraction mixed with occasional nuggets of insight (But not really a break-down of such insights or even proof of such insights) that keep this from being any sense of guide to thinking free and more like something likely to take off with folks who are easily pulled into conspiracy theories.

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