Get It Right, or Look Like An Idiot!
We Think…Therefore We Are!
As I was thinking about the industry of safety, firearms, risk reduction, personal protection…etc.. I came to the conclusion that there are many people out there who just don’t do enough studying about the proper terms for such industries. This was brought to my attention by the politicians, who deceive with flattering verbage and flowery forked-tonguedness; like how they create a new “term” for something and if they use it enough, then everyone starts using it as well and pretty soon, the whole population is believing the sunshine being blown up their keesters!
WELL…let me explain some things that have been so distorted, they are actually looked at as being “bad” and then are used against the “pro-gun” folks out there. I mean, when the anti’s are using vague terms to push their “slave-like” agendas, but have to get very specific when their opinions and views are being scrutinized, that is not a fair fight…is it! So if we can all agree on the “terms” being used, maybe we can have some enlightenment and actually agree that being unnaturally fearful is just ignorance being taken to a whole new level.
Let’s first look at the word “GUN” and what that really means. According to the book I’m reading about the history and development of the “gun”, and other sources I’ve checked into, the word gun pretty much means, “Engine of war.” Well, that being said, pretty much anything used with the intent to destroy in war can be defined as such. So then…spears, bows and arrows, sling-shots, blow darts and blow guns, knives, axes, swords, forks, rolling pins, frying pans, tanks, cars, trucks, baseball bats, golf clubs, throwing stars…etc, etc, etc….Do you see where this is going??? (A pen or pencil could technically be called a “gun” if we were getting picky about it)
Using the word “gun” to mean “firearms” is only hurting the problem we are having with the “unnatural fear of guns and gun owners” known as being “hoplaphobic”. I have spoken to “hoplaphobes” and the behavior they demonstrate is quite interesting actually. It would seem that inside their minds, a “firearm” would hover around and function on its own without anyone actually touching it or controling it at all. REALLY??? is that really gonna happen??? Well…of course not, but people can be strange creatures, especially when they are ignorant to the facts. We can blame much of the media and movie industry for many “imaginative” portrayals of what certainly can’t happen in real life. But that is Hollywood isn’t it.
Firearms are considered guns, but so is everything else in the same arena. So to distinguish them as they should be, we use “firearm.” I mean…how many dogs are there out there? But when we see a dog, we don’t point and say, “dog” with a stupid smile on our face. We instead ask, “what breed?”; this is the distinguishing detail and we are happy to have such a detail to use.
As the progress of the cannon moved forward, they got increasingly smaller. Black powder went from dirty stuff to the invention of smokeless powder. Then the idea of the “enclosed” cartridge came about, soon we had the entire “round” and things got really cool. So as many of us have heard the term “hand cannon” and we laugh as we look at the .44 magnum with a 8 inch barrel with the muzzle break on the end, but that is exactly what it is. The cannon and the firearm have the same principles…its just very high tech and smaller than its original father model. Pirates used many cannons that were very small and intimidating so they didn’t destroy the ships they attacked, in order to board them and plunder at will. I mean…can you plunder and steal supplies and treasure from a ship you sink? NOPE…you sure can’t. We see movies with the big cannons being used all the time, but the reality is that the smaller ones were used as well, but that doesn’t make for good entertainment…so we really never see that part of the truth.
So as the word “gun” was distorted and warped beyond recognition, we are doing it to other great words as well:
AR (15, 10, etc.) – These two letters seem to really ignite some fury in the media and among the “gun-haters” out there. When the fact is, that the “AR” in AR15, doesn’t actually mean “assault rifle” but rather, came to be from a great company called, “Armalite.” You see…Armalite was the company who invented a whole new platform of rifles many years ago. They sold the rights to a company who manufactured that product and sold it to the military, they called it the M-16. So, NO, the “AR” doesn’t mean “Assault Rifle” but infact really means “Armalite.”
So lets list some terms we can be better about using shall we:
Commonly used term / More correct term
- Gun(s) / Firearm(s)
- Assault Rifle / Armalite Rifle
- Assault Rifle / Modernized Sporter Rifle
- Black rifle / AR platform rifle, Modernized Sporter Rifle or Semi-automatci rifle.
- Clip / Magazine (clips do exist, such as; Moon Clips or stripper clips, but it is common to hear people say clips and mean magazines)
- Bullets / Cartridge, Round(s) or Ammunition (Ammo for short) (Bullets are correct when referring to the actual “projectile” that leaves the barrel when fired, but not the whole round)
- Draw you gun / Present your emergency tool (this may be a stretch, but why not play with some terms to our advantage anyway.)
- Weapon / Firearm (firearms are considered “weapons” as well, but that word has a negatively aggresive image attached to it in some peoples minds, and that is a fight we are always dealing with)
- Weapon / Assault Weapon (Defined as: Shoulder mounted, intermediate cartridge, selective fire; fired one at a time or fully automatic modes. There are really only one or two models that actually fit that requirement.)
- Automatic / Self-loader or Semi-automatic (Automatics are really termed “fully automatic” as in, you hold down the trigger and it continues to fire until the operator lets up on the trigger, or the magazine empties)
- Pistol / Revolver (pistol can mean both “Revolver” and “Semi-automatic”)
- Anti-gun person / Misinformed, ignorant “regurgitator” or pure unfactual information. (common to see such people reporting on the prime time news hour) (ok, I couldn’t resist that slight jab…sorry about that)
- Pull or squeeze the trigger / Press the trigger (Pull or squeeze can relate to the entire hand moving, which is not effective for accurate results. “Press” the trigger is being used more and more now to separate the idea of moving just your trigger finger separately from the rest of your hand)
So here we have some very commonly misused terms that hopefully we can learn from and curb our language appropriately. The more ignorant we “gun folk” appear, the worse it will be in the long run. The image I have always seen attributed to the “gun nuts” out there is a big, fat, hairy, ignorant, beer drinking, wife beatin, plaid shirt wearing, trailer living, redneck from the south. Nothing could be farther from the truth. In my CFP classes, I have instructed; politicians, lobbyist, lawyers, house wives, clergy, computer nerds, authors, stabbing victims, celebrities, bikers, construction workers, miners, CEO’s, CFO’s, students, house dads, professional hunters, web developers…and the list goes on. In other words…”gun nuts” are just like everyone else. The old and young alike are concerned about their safety and the safety and well being of their families and friends.
What we need to do is continue learning about the industry, the how’s, the why’s, the what’s, and history, the realities and make sure we not only educate ourselves, but help to educate those around us as well. You can’t explain the facts until you actually have them with you!
I sure hope this helps yall out. Be safe, be good, be educated and check your six often!
From one sheepdog to another…