shooting at Charleston W. VA schoopl board meeting


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alan
July 19, 2003, 06:03 PM
The 18 July edition of my local paper, the Pittsburgh Post- Gazette, on page A-5 carried a small item re the above. Other than some people doused with gasoline, and one woman shot, no info on her condition, the attacker described as a "school board employee" as I recall, not much information, other than that "an assault style rifle" was used. The story, which occupied just a few lines, managed to get that in. Readers might find my Letter To The Editor interesting, especially since I suspect that my comments will not be printed in the paper, precluding the possibility of reading them in the Letters section.

Editor:

Regarding reference to this "assault-style rifle", might that be something similar to the chick, black, plunging neckline, off the shoulder number, the one that featured a skirt slit almost to the wearers waist, that Hattie's used to offer? One suspects not, but please read on, for the following is important, perhaps interesting too.

Concerning the indiscriminate, sloppy and incorrect use of military/technical terminology, when one complains about this, one is told, and I speak from personal experience, that the term, phrase or wording, "assault-style rifle" in this case, has come to be part of the vernacular. While this might be true, it begs the question, for it does not tell interested parties how this business of additions to the vernacular works, or comes to be.

Terms such as "assault weapon", "assault rifle" "assault pistol", "assault-style rifle", "semi-automatic assault rifle" are the darlings of The Anti Gun Lobby, and it's rhetoric, for they ooze emotionalism, and are vague enough to confuse the general public. The pro-gun side, if given half a chance, can combat these tactics, the facts being on the Pro Gun side, however more often than not, at the hands of media, they don't get even "half a chance", media turning out to be the handmaiden of anti-gun, anti individual rights and responsibility apparachnicks and their machinations.

For those readers, or others that might be interested, the proper definition for "assault rifle", see www.britannica.com, The U.S. Army and or Dept. of Defense, or any one of a number of standard reference texts that deal with small arms is as follows: Assault Weapon: Selective fire weapon, usually of rifle configuration, chambered for an intermediate power cartridge. There is nothing arcane, obscure or complicated about this definition, nor is it any sort of "state secret", leaving one wondering as to why media, print as well as broadcast continually "trips on it's tongue", regarding things having to do with firearms in general, or the so-called assault rifle, or what they erroneously describe there as, in particular. After all, notwithstanding time constraints, reporters do have access to reference materials, as well as to the telephone. Should, by some quirk of fate, these facilities be denied to an intrepid reporter out in the field, editors "back home at the office" are most certainly not so handicapped.

At the top of page 1, immediately below the papers name, one finds the following claim or statement re this paper, "One of America's Great Newspapers". Re this claim, how about acting the part, rather than merely claiming credit for being what you perhaps could be, but fall short of accomplishing, due to such shortcomings as were above mentioned. Try it, you might like it.



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