TheGunBlog.ca — The way we talk about guns shapes our perceptions and politics. Here are 14 expressions that smart shooters never use.
Many of the phrases are clever psychological stunts by anti-gun activists. They work by the principle of association. Put ideas together and your brain associates them automatically.
It’s why advertising works. Commercials feature shiny happy people having fun, so you associate the product with shiny happy fun.
Put “gun” near any undesirable concept to create an undesireable association: crime, death, murder, violence, … Yuk.
The good news is we can also use the power of associating ideas for shiny happy fun things: gun rights, gun freedom, gun safety, gun defence, gun joy, gun club, gun guy, gun girl, gun smile, guntastic, etc.
If a shooter uses one of the words on this list, they may have just slipped up and need re-education. It might even be healing to subscribe to TheGunBlog.ca. If they use more than one, be very careful. They are probably the enemy.
Expressions Smart Gunnies Never Use, or Use Carefully
1. Active Shooter: If you’re talking about someone shooting people in a shopping mall or a school, how about: “active attacker.” An active shooter is someone who makes frequent trips to the target range. If we had more time and money, we’d all be active shooters.
2. Amnesty: An amnesty is forgiveness for something you did wrong. When the police invite you to surrender your property and promise to not charge you, it isn’t an amnesty. It’s voluntary surrender.
3. Assault-Style Weapon, or Military-Style Weapon: This is an invention of firearm prohibitionists after shooters mocked them for the incorrect use of “assault weapon.”
4. Assault Weapon: From 1944 until 1994 an “assault weapon” was an automatic rifle in a medium calibre. Today, it’s hoplophobe code for “bangbang make me poopoo” and shooters ridicule them for it. But the gun industry contributed to the abuse of the term and confusion over it. Be specific: “automatic rifle.”
5. Buyback: If the government forces you to sell them your guns, it’s not a buyback. First, the government gets its money from you and other taxpayers, so the buying would be done with your money. Second, they can’t buy back something that wasn’t theirs to begin with. It’s confiscation paid for by you.
6. Crime Gun: If you don’t say “crime car,” “crime fist,” “crime bottle,” “crime rope,” or “crime knife,” then don’t say “crime gun.” It’s a gun. If it was used in crime, be specific: was it stolen, smuggled, illegally purchased? See also “Illegal gun.”
7. Grandfathering: The government promotes gun bans by promising to let you keep your newly prohibited firearms until you die. It’s a lot cleaner and cheaper than taking them from you alive. But confiscating your guns after you die isn’t “grandfathering.” It’s “confiscating your guns after you die.”
8. Gun Crime: You wouldn’t say “fist crime,” “knife crime,” “crowbar crime,” or “van crime,” so why would you say “gun crime”? If you mean a criminal attack with a firearm, or an illegal shooting, or the unlawful possession of a firearm, say so.
9. Gun Control: If you mean recoil management, fine. If you mean “restrictions on who is allowed to own firearms,” that isn’t gun control, that’s people control.
10. Gun Violence: This is the go-to phrase of gun banners and confiscators. It’s anti-gun propaganda gold and total kryptonite for gun owners. Better to be specific: “murder,” “criminal shooting,” “attack,” “mugging.” We don’t say, “That gun is violent.” We say, “That person is violent.” Violence is a quality that applies to people and actions, not objects. “Gun violence” is wrong in so many ways, but it’s powerful psychologically. If there is one phrase you must never use, this is it. It’s what Scott Adams calls a “linguistic kill shot.” Bottom line: If you ever hear someone use this expression, grab your guns before they do.
11. High-Capacity Magazine: If your AR-15 magazine can’t hold more than 5 rounds of ammo, it’s broken. A standard-capacity AR-15 mag holds 20 or 30 cartridges. A standard-capacity Glock 17 mag holds 17 rounds. If you have a 60- or 110-round drum, then maybe you can call that a “high-capacity” magazine. Maybe. But for some jobs, that’s standard capacity.
12. Illegal Gun: Sometimes used as a shortcut for a firearm a criminal imported, obtained, possessed or used illegally. Better to be specific. We don’t want the word “gun” next to anything bad. Also remember that legality has nothing to do with the object, and everything to do with the user. A gun that is illegal for me to own might be perfectly legal for you to own. See also “crime gun” and “gun control.”
13. Non-Restricted: All authorized firearms in Canada are tightly restricted. There’s no such thing as a non-restricted gun. But the law has fabricated three classes of firearms, one of which is “Non-restricted.” It’s a label that means the opposite of what it says. All firearms are restricted, some are “Non-restricted” and Joseph Goebbels just peed his pants laughing.
14. Unrestricted: All authorized firearms and all firearm owners in Canada are tightly restricted. Some people confuse the misleading legal classification of “Non-restricted” with the adjective “unrestricted.” Don’t. See also “Non-Restricted.”
Violence: Not to avoid, but to be aware: When bad guys do it, it’s “violence.” When good guys do it, it’s “force.”
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