All week long I have been resisting the urge to finalize my opinion in the tragic shooting in St. Louis, Missouri. I just don’t have enough information – accurate information, yet. As a student of things gun, hence the term gunist to describe myself, I am acutely aware that the opinions of what I will refer to as the “masses” are largely ignorant when it comes to most things guns.
Please note that I did not say ‘stupid’ – that implies intelligence or a lack thereof. Ignorance is simply not knowing something – and is fixable.
I address this in every basic gun class I teach at Apex Arms. The masses have been taught most of everything they know from only a handful of usual sources and suspects: family/friends, TV/movies, and news media.
Note that I said ‘sources.’ This includes family and friends. Most of the time if people have misconceptions about guns and it came from family and friends – they were just as well mis-informed or never learned about gun stuff completely and passed on incomplete info. Not necessarily bad, but incomplete – somehow they managed to not shoot themselves in the foot (yet) and are gun folk, so they are experts in the eyes of the student. Easy fix as a teacher.
Note that I said ‘suspects.’ It is long established amongst the knowledgeable that the worst source for accurate information about anything guns is from our favorite TV and movie stars over the past many decades. Studies show that by the age of 21, most have witnessed upwards of 10,000 murders via media – nearly all of it woefully and technically WRONG! Our action stars are not gunists, the directors and continuity people aren’t either and aside from the few directors who care (lookup Michael Mann some Sunday afternoon or start with this. The constant repetition of bad info is nothing short of propaganda that as a teacher, I have only a couple of hours to dispel and correct, but is still a fixable problem.
Then the real suspects… the news media. (I won’t even address the politicians here because anyone reading this knows how intentionally ignorant and deceitful most of our polls are.) The news media has a responsibility to report. I accept that they also editorialize as well – especially when they differentiate. But when they report on things like guns and show such utter lack of knowledge as this genius, who didn’t know the difference between bullets and earplugs. I have to wonder where and when the ignorance is turned into intentional propaganda.
This reporter is the one being touted as ‘the guy who was on the ground’ (recall the Huffington Post reporter in Ferguson) during the St. Louis riots? Well, this is one of the intrepid ace reporters being used as a primary source. That means, if he says it, it most likely is most accurate.
Aside from the completely debunked Moms Demand Action for Guns (Mayor Bloomberg financed propaganda group of proven liars disguised as soccer moms), and the Violence Policy Center (changed their name from Brady Campaign after being debunked so often), and their ilk, we are supposed to rely on reportage like this. By the way – many times these aforementioned political action anti-rights groups are supplying ‘expert’ background to the news and politicians. Is it any wonder why people have lost their way on the entire so-called ‘gun issue’???
This guy influenced an entire media cycle and perhaps the outcome of rioters’ lives, residents of Ferguson’s lives and property, and police officers with his reporting. He doesn’t know enough about the subject matter to even have a valid opinion, much less report on gun issues. That is my opinion based on my knowledge of earplugs, not even bullets and guns.
How do we solve this?
As gunists we must work harder to NOT laugh and get frustrated at those who use terms like clips/mags bullets/cartridges, etc. all wrong – it comes off as elitist and snobby to those ignorant masses. We must 1) take a step back, 2) realize they are not stupid, just ignorant, 3) offer them a chance to learn without making them feel stupid, 4) be good ambassadors and invite them to the range for a session with 22’s – not the day for .50 BMG and 2″ 50 S&W, and 5) fix the ignorance!
When they see that their own friends are normal, happy, well balanced Americans who enjoy the various shooting sports and who ARE NOT CRAZY gun nuts like the media and news have constantly taught them to be afraid of, you will have accomplished a few things.
First (and really this one’s a no brainer), what is better than starting someone off into the world of guns – right?
Second, you alone will have singlehandedly undone years of repetitious drumbeat of propaganda, news, hate, and other various vitriol from the anti-rights crowd of fascists. Think of how powerful that is – in just a couple hours you will have tremendous influence over a very expensive campaign against you, me, our rights, guns, freedom, etc. that has been waged by some very wealthy 1%ers (like Nanny York Mayor (your soda is too big) Bloomberg) and powerful fear merchants (like attorney General Eric (Fast and Furious) Holder) who openly state their goals are to do just that – tell you what rights they deem appropriate for you.
Third, you might have just saved a life. If a NEWB gets a gun and someday needs one to protect themselves or their loved ones, someday they may have you to thank for getting them started.
So today, I mock the genius of the on-the-ground reporter of the HuffPo and any news organization or politician that parrots that garbage – tomorrow I will find someone new to take to the range.
Care to join me in the crusade? It is time to put up or shut up, fellow gunists. Send a link of this article to your friends and lets get even with the media. Then tell your friends to take a comprehensive, high-quality class taught by NRA certified and experienced instructors at Apex Arms.