Have you ever noticed that whenever an “air” of authority is needed, a token antigun veteran or gun owner is trotted out to promote whatever antigun tactic is going to be used to try to silence the people protesting their rights being taken away?
Adam Weinstein is just one example. Before we get to the hilariously bad piece of gaslighting that he wrote, let’s talk about his CV for a few moments. His WaPo byline says the following:
Adam Weinstein is a senior editor at Task & Purpose and a Florida native, and is currently at work on a memoir about gun culture in America.
Oh, a senior editor for Task & Purpose? Gosh, that’s fantastic, he must know his stuff! Let’s look at his bio on Muck Rack:
I’m a senior editor at Task & Purpose, the news and culture site for service members and veterans. Previously, I was a senior investigative editor for a startup created by ABC News and Univision. From 2013 to 2015, I was a senior writer for Gawker, specializing in national insecurity: domestic discontents, guns, global affairs, and militaria. I launched and edited Gawker’s highly successful Fortress America blog. I also helped launch The Trace, the investigative magazine on gun culture and policy, as a writer and editor.
Well gosh, he helped launch The Trace, the firearms “journalism” talking point generator financed by Mike Bloomberg, joining his other astroturf groups such as Moms Demand Action, Everytown, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, and more. When someone admits to helping launch a propaganda outfit, you should take what they have to say with a giant grain of salt.
Today, he published the following opinion piece in the Washington Post – The NRA and its allies use jargon to bully gun-control supporters: If you don’t know what the “AR” in AR-15 stands for, you don’t get to talk.
Right off the bat we have him poisoning the well and acting like gun owners are engaged in the horrifying crime of gatekeeping, because knowing what you are talking about is somehow a bad thing.
While debating the merits of various gun control proposals, Second Amendment enthusiasts often diminish, or outright dismiss their views if they use imprecise firearms terminology. Perhaps someone tweets about “assault-style” weapons, only to be told that there’s no such thing. Maybe they’re reprimanded that an AR-15 is neither an assault rifle nor “high-powered.” Or they say something about “machine guns” when they really mean semiautomatic rifles. Or they get sucked into an hours-long Facebook exchange over the difference between the terms clip and magazine.
Well, yes, we do diminish or dismiss the view of people who make ignorant statements. You see, Adam, words have meanings and when you wish to enter into a discussion about how the firearms laws of this country are bad, it helps if you can demonstrate a layperson’s knowledge of the subject matter. Why does this matter?
Because the difference between an “assault weapon” and an “assault rifle” is that the former is available from WalMart, but possessing the latter without an appropriate NFA Form 4 with Tax Stamp is a violation of US Code; a felony with 10 year prison sentence and a $250,000 fine. Even more than this, the “common sense” “gun safety” proposals being put forth are also going to be federal laws, with federal felony penalties for violating them.
So when you want to turn people into felons for breaking laws, asking you to know what you are talking about is not bullying. It’s having a rational discussion. It’s not making people into criminals based upon your ignorance.
If you don’t know the difference between an “assault weapon” and “assault rifle” here’s a handy resource that will teach you – http://www.assaultweapon.info/ (link opens in new window). If that’s too long, this Imgur gallery is a short read.
Weinstein’s article focuses on haranguing various conservatives who use pro-gun arguments. He snidely comments on Dana Loesch wrongly identifying Belton & Puckle guns as fully automatic. He berates Tomi Lahren for not having “qualifications” when she pointed out that the AR in AR-15 stands for Armalite and not “Assault Rifle” then goes off on a tangent where Eugene’s Stoner’s family somehow knows exactly how their late patriarch would have felt regarding his almost 60 year old design being the most popular pattern rifle in the US.
Basically he engages in all manner of ad hominem attacks & logical fallacies while trying to shut down discussion, because feelings mean more than facts or something. Unsurprising considering his boss paid good money to produce this slick paper advocating exactly that: Preventing Gun Violence Through Effective Messaging
Then he insincerely slides in as an impartial, middle ground “voice of reason” with this comment:
In this kind of war over words, both sides probably need to give a little. But the pro-gun side needs to give a lot more — not just because it’s been disingenuously gunsplaining to shut down discussions and close minds for years — but because the onus should be on those citizens who own the weapons technology, and purport to understand it, to share that understanding with the skeptical and less-informed. That’s a responsibility that goes along with the right to bear arms.
The pro-gun side does not need to give, at all, because we’re literally faced with people who view the NRA as a terrorist organization, (including putting up billboards advertising their belief) are calling members “child murderers.” Spare me the indignation about “gunsplaining” Adam, your crocodile tears are transparent.
He closes with
And yes, a growing number of American gun owners, including me, find “assault weapons” easier to define, and harder to defend, with time.
Well of course you find them hard to defend, Adam. You’re a stalwart defender of gun control in nearly every form, and are a quisling. You are “one of the good ones” who is all too happy to promote gun control because you think the 2nd Amendment is a relic and not a necessity, especially when law enforcement agencies are not only have no duty to protect you but also aren’t even going to take action when directly warned about a mass shooter. They’ll just stand around waiting while kids die. I figured out who you remind me of.
So Adam, this isn’t about “gunsplaining” – it’s about you trying to silence the critics pointing out the myriad flaws in your side’s terrible arguments. The only “bad faith” is your dishonest garbage masquerading as a ‘reasonable person’s perspective.’
Reason.com article also discussing this: http://reason.com/blog/2018/03/06/in-defense-of-gunsplaining