Can we present a united front re: the "Modern Sporting Rifle"?


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beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 10:09 AM
I did a search on "modern sporting rifle" after perusing the thread on the heavily boycotted and now all but canceled Eastern Outdoors Show:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=696041

There are many news stories about this, but here is one from The Washington Post, dated 24 January:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/pa-outdoors-show-focus-of-boycott-after-ban-on-assault-weapons-is-postponed-indefinitely/2013/01/24/2a255f9e-664a-11e2-889b-f23c246aa446_story.html

A brief quote from the article:

“Our original decision not to include certain products in the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show this year was made in order to preserve the event’s historical focus on the hunting and fishing traditions enjoyed by American families,” Chet Burchett, Reed Exhibitions’ regional president, said in a statement.
He said that the presence of “modern sporting rifles” would have distracted from the show’s focus on hunting and fishing, “a product decision ... of the type event organizers need to make every day.”

One could argue that those comments are rather Fuddish, but that’s neither here nor there.

So, back to my point: Are we presenting a united front when we call the civilian versions of rifles modeled on what were originally military designs “modern sporting rifles”?

I know they have sporting purposes. I know they have utility purposes. I know they are the best form of small arms to hold in defense against tyranny. And I know we have gun owners on all sides of the argument over what to call them and how to describe them. But is the moniker “modern sporting rifle” broad enough to be applied to a cadre of platforms which many supporters of RKBA view as the most effective last resort “anti-tyranny” device on the civilian market and which they own predominantly because of that view?

It’s been beaten to death on this and other forums, but the national coverage being afforded this event shines a light on it once again. Plenty of anti-gun people are aware of what was going to happen but now is not happening in Harrisburg, and they’ll also be keenly aware of how divided the gun community is on how it views these kinds of rifles, the ones antis incorrectly but almost unanimously call “assault rifles.”

My view is that supporters of RKBA and 2A should somehow link arms on this and figure out what to call these rifles. In the past I suggested the term “operator configurable rifle” for the AR. It’s a term that makes sense in that it’s both technically accurate and broad enough to cover all the ways in which the platform is employed. It also de-emphasizes all the "bad" stuff the antis throw out. It’s not perfect, nor is it the only option. But using it -- or any standardized term -- beats the heck out of fighting amongst ourselves over what we should call them.

If the antis can unite in labeling these firearms, why can’t we? It would be a step toward presenting a united pro-2a front, a feat at which we consistently fail.

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hso
January 26, 2013, 10:12 AM
Because not all of them are "user configurable".

Fremmer
January 26, 2013, 10:14 AM
The 2nd amendment isn't about protecting sports or hunting (careful, soon they'll be talking about how you don't need blood sport rifles)....

NO NEW GUN CONTROL. Period!

Blakenzy
January 26, 2013, 10:45 AM
Current technology firearms.

Current technology firearms, neutered... because they can't take advantage of modern select fire technology.:(

Modern weapons.

Latest generation firearms.

All-purpose weapons.

All-purpose firearm.

All-purpose rifle.

Utility rifles.

Universal Utility rifles.

Universal Purpose rifles.

beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 11:11 AM
Please, can we keep this focused?

My question is about our inability to present a common front on ARs as the antis do. Is it impossible? Are we as the gun-owning community too divided on the AR and similar platforms to present a united front?

To amplify the point: The boycott of the PA show will seem to a lot of antis a great opportunity to show how crazy we are--that we won't go to a gun show unless it has maniacal killing machines on display because we ourselves are only interested in firearms because of their maniacal killing power. Is that the way we wish to be viewed?

Of course that's not what we're about. But messaging and perceptions matter.

MAKster
January 26, 2013, 11:22 AM
The way I see it is that you will never see a united front because gun owners by definition strongly believe in freedom and individuality. They have no more interest in taking orders from the gun industry bosses than they do from Congress. Many gun owners are suspicious that the gun makers and groups like the NSSF are willing to sell them out to protect their profits.

Blakenzy
January 26, 2013, 11:26 AM
To amplify the point: The boycott of the PA show will seem to a lot of antis a great opportunity to show how crazy we are--that we won't go to a gun show unless it has maniacal killing machines on display because we ourselves are only interested in firearms because of their maniacal killing power. Is that the way we wish to be viewed?

Of course that's not what we're about. But messaging and perceptions matter.
Maniacal killing machines? Seriously? :rolleyes:

So now we are supposed to act full of shame, as if semiautomatic rifles are all icky, undesirable and OK to discriminate against in rather lame attempt to placate gun prohibitionists? If we act as if it is OK to shun modern firearm technology, what idea do you think lawmakers will get?

A message was sent and the message was clear: If you pander to gun grabbers and discriminate against what little is left of the 2nd Amendment you will go out of business. Hopefully politicians have received the message too. Gun owners and supporters of the Constitution put their money where their mouth is.

NO COMPROMISE

heavydluxe
January 26, 2013, 11:49 AM
I'm a relative n00b gun owner, though a long-time legal proponent of the 2nd Amendment.

As a former outsider, it's always seemed that the anti-gun movement has done a better job in terms of setting the terminology or branding the 'threat'. In that sphere, the pro-RKBA community has always been REACTIVE.

In my estimation, that's because gun lovers are always in the position of trying to balance presenting firearms as what they are (tools in the hands of humans) while not giving too much ground to the left in that firearms advances are - and have always been - driven by largely military needs. In other words: Guns don't kill people, people do. But, *these* guns are advancing the way they are precisely so they can be more efficient killing instruments. While I agree the application trips over into sport and target sports, the fact is that is residual.

I think the best we can do is to unite on a term like "modern rifle" or "modern handgun" - implying these are the implements best suited for current times and applications (whether sporting, or otherwise). After all, that's language that's even coinciding with Heller's "common use" clause.

The terminology game, while important, is not where we will win/lose the battle.

beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 12:10 PM
A message was sent and the message was clear: If you pander to gun grabbers and discriminate against what little is left of the 2nd Amendment you will go out of business. Hopefully politicians have received the message too. Gun owners and supporters of the Constitution put their money where their mouth is.

I hope you're right. I made it clear that I do not see ARs as maniacal killing machines, but that many antis do. Is the message you so clearly stated really the way anti-gun legislators will spin it?

The way I see it is that you will never see a united front because gun owners by definition strongly believe in freedom and individuality. They have no more interest in taking orders from the gun industry bosses than they do from Congress. Many gun owners are suspicious that the gun makers and groups like the NSSF are willing to sell them out to protect their profits.

Very good points, and worthy of deeper thought on my part. Perhaps rugged individualism is what's really under attack, and rampant conformity is the enemy.

sobx
January 26, 2013, 12:12 PM
Hey everyone, first post here, I think...

I agree with the OP in that a well crafted message will do more good than retracting to discussion of rights, which although true, seems to have some difficulty with traction in the halls of public opinion, at least in some regions/divisions.

To the OP, I personally think "modern sporting rifles" is a pretty good term if it could be universally used by the proponents of owning them. Assault weapons is a nasty term implying one-purpose use which is false. (Assault vehicles made by Kia have probably been used in homicides). Military-style weapons is a little better, but still implies intent. While we agree that A purpose is to serve that need if ever necessary, most will likely never need them for that purpose, just as the US will likely never need its stockpile of ICBMs. But we have them for that purpose.

However, modern sporting rifle, which is well over 99% of what these rifles are used for, is a fitting name and I think well crafted. LEOs carry them, but not for sporting purposes. However, it would be interesting to know the number of rounds fired in anger vs. sport. I don't think we have enough 9's after the decimal to describe than percentage.

With respect to maniacal killing machines, "perception is reality". Those that think that deepen their distrust for *them* and those that have them every time the other team appears to just dig in their heels. I realize that the debate seems very closed on this side, however, the discussion with only heels buried makes us seem less pragmatic and more ideological and that scares people. Lots of them. Agree with OP that messaging is key. Bobby Jindal acknowledged that on several fronts yesterday.

Matt

happygeek
January 26, 2013, 12:20 PM
Military-style weapons is a little better, but still implies intent.


Of all the buzz words they throw out there, "military-style" has to be the dumbest. Everything from a muzzle loaders to Trapdoor Springfields to bolt actions to semi-autos are "military-style". Heck, I own 4 real, as issued, honest to God, military rifles. At least 2 of them were probably actually used in WWII. Ironically my AR-15 is far from being "military" in anything but appearance since it's a blowback operated dedicated 22LR upper on a lower that has a different sized receiver from a M4A1, not to mention different fire control group.

Evil Black Rifles are just the target of opportunity right now. If they can get those they'll go after "sniper rifles" and "rapid fire" bolt actions next like my M95 Steyr (http://www.vpc.org/graphics/snipcov2.pdf).

Blakenzy
January 26, 2013, 12:32 PM
Evil Black Rifles are just the target of opportunity right now. If they can get those they'll go after "sniper rifles" and "rapid fire" bolt actions next like my M95 Steyr (http://www.vpc.org/graphics/snipcov2.pdf).

And then they will point to the statistics (which they are conveniently ignoring now) and say "Look! Most firearms used in crimes are handguns! We should ban those too, for our safety!"

The end goal is to adopt UK prohibitive gun laws, and then some.

22-rimfire
January 26, 2013, 12:35 PM
Modern Sporting Rifle (MSR) works for me as it is a neutral term. It is certainly better than the common EBR (Evil Black Rifle).

We can hope for a united front relative to gun control issues. But many do not see the RKBA issue as absolute in that no additional controls are needed. We work with what we have.

My one brother for example can not understand why many people are so set on being able to own MSR's when to him they are not a practical hunting firearm. I try to convince him that the 2A is not about hunting. But he feels this is an outdated fear. Some people rub their St. Christopher medal for luck and others rub their MSRs.

I agree with Joe Biden on this one point, "Let the facts speak for themselves."

ZeSpectre
January 26, 2013, 01:10 PM
beatledog7 Said: My question is about our inability to present a common front on ARs as the antis do. Is it impossible? Are we as the gun-owning community too divided on the AR and similar platforms to present a united front?

One of the GREAT and TERRIBLY FRUSTRATING things about Second Amendment Supporters is that we tend to be "individualists". That makes a "unified front" damn near impossible, however it also means that the individuals are pretty passionate and committed to their ideals and beliefs unlike a lot of the anti-rights people who depend on emotion and "heat of the moment" to do anything.

The Anti-Rights people may provide a face that appears fairly unified, but they suffer greatly from the huge ebb and flow as emotions run dry and the "heat of the moment" cools over time. It's a lot easier to look "unified" when your total numbers are relatively small overall.

We have HUGE numbers of individualists and keeping that focused is like herding cats (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pk7yqlTMvp8) but the thing is that we tend to have a LOT more staying power because, for the most part, we're operating on a basis of calmly reasoned ideals and principles.

So, ultimately, we seem a lot less cohesive, but far more powerful.

also, I've been quite intrigued how we've been taking ownership of the "evil black rifle" term and making it a "middle finger gesture" back at the anti-rights folks. I didn't think that was a good idea but in this case I was wrong and I've been astonished at how doing this has resonated with a lot of "fence sitters".

Isaac-1
January 26, 2013, 01:16 PM
I personally hate the term "Modern Sporting Rifle", I would much rather a term like "Modern Modular Rifle" to imply its highly configurable nature or something similar, Modern Sporting Rifle just seems silly, and it often seems absurd to the general public, how often have you had this conversation, someone off the street asks you what is a Moden Sporting Rifle, and you either go on about it is a rifle with these features, and they get a blank look, or you say it is an AK or AR and they say, Oh an Assault Rifle.

happygeek
January 26, 2013, 02:25 PM
also, I've been quite intrigued how we've been taking ownership of the "evil black rifle" term and making it a "middle finger gesture" back at the anti-rights folks. I didn't think that was a good idea but in this case I was wrong and I've been astonished at how doing this has resonated with a lot of "fence sitters".


It's the term I use because as I said in post #11 "military-style" is absolutely meaningless. "Assault weapon" is equally meaningless, espicially in legal terms that vary from CA to NJ to NY. I believe Evil Black Rifle was originally a tongue in cheek term based off EBR (as in Enhanced Battle Rifle), but it perfectly conveys what's being talked about; i.e. a black rifle that looks scary. A rifle doesn't even have to be a semi-auto to be a EBR, the VPC called the Savage 110 BA an "assault rifle" for example (http://www.vpc.org/studies/militarization.pdf).

junyo
January 26, 2013, 03:09 PM
It is sad that this is what the world has come to. The common citizen is so far divorced from the concept of armed self defense that any reference that that icky old military is damning. So we'll call it a modern sport rifle. Or how about a 'unicorn peace and love launcher'? Maybe a 'rainbow gumdrop dispenser'?

Well, eff that. It's a weapon. The reason why it looks a lot like what the military carries is because the people in the military use weapons, as weapons, every day. Therefore what they've found works/does not work, is pertinent, since in ones daily life as an accountant in Topeka, one does not get to personally test whether or not his 'fairy twinkle shooter' will work when it truly comes down to the come down. Which is why every flashlight on the face of the earth is 'tactical'. It's way 'mil-spec' is a marketing term. In a million other product types it's perfectly acceptable to admit that yeah, we're aping the military. But non-gendered and unpersonified higher power forbid that in the one area where the military has a monopoly on daily experience that we emulate them

It's. A. Damn. Weapon.

I won't apologize for that, I won't hide it, I won't do this lawyerly parsing of phrases like it means something. It's words, and more words, and the conversation gets dumber and dumber, because we've ceded the fact that not only is it okay to have irrational fear, those fears are a valid basis for policy. Do you think it will be more acceptable to people who are too incurious to educate themselves that the evil black baby killer has been re-branded? It still has the shoulder thing that goes up, which obviously makes it a weapon of mass destruction. Call it a 'tulip sunset drizzler', call it a 'blueberry muffin slingshot', call it a 'freedom fire stick'; the next time someone gets shot, we'll be right back here.

ExTank
January 26, 2013, 04:21 PM
junyo, you are my personal hero for today.

Blakenzy
January 26, 2013, 04:51 PM
'tulip sunset drizzler'

:D

I'm using that one.

Burt Blade
January 26, 2013, 05:26 PM
Labels we can use:

Ordinary modern rifle

Standard capacity magazine

personal defense weapon

ladies companion

Or, for when you want a stronger statement

Genocide preventer

Rapist repellant

mugger plugger

Lynch stopper

beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 06:33 PM
Nice rant, junyo, and it proves my point.

You say quite adamantly that it's a weapon, made for killing. And while I agree that ARs can serve effectively in that role, most of them in civilian hands will never kill anyone. The message that such vehemence as yours sends is a major reason why the anti's think we're all itching to shoot someone.

Is there no middle ground among us? Are we all so wedded to our preferred terminology that we can't get around it? We complain about antis calling ARs assault rifles, saying we don't assault people with them and they're not select fire. Yet we insist on saying they're for killing people, then we say we probably won't ever use them for killing people, so nobody should fear them.

Look, I fully understand the need for a hedge against tyranny, but the antis don't. That message has proven grossly ineffective with the vast majority of those who want to ban ARs. We need to find a message that works. Our shrill cry that these are the instruments of freedom, though true, is failing to change anyone's mind.

GEM
January 26, 2013, 06:44 PM
No anti person will be convinced by the argument that an AR is not a bad gun because you use it for sport. Who says that hosing away at Bambi will be morally atttractive to antigunners?

I am on the side that if you emphasize sport you immediately rationalize bans and mag limits.

Recall Australia and UK tried the sports tale and lost the guns. Don't go there again.

If you want sport, go bowling. Bah.

There is no middle ground that tries to excuse owning incredibly lethal instruments for sport.

XD Fan
January 26, 2013, 06:51 PM
Look, I fully understand the need for a hedge against tyranny, but the antis don't. That message has proven grossly ineffective with the vast majority of those who want to ban ARs. We need to find a message that works.

Beatledog, I am not sure there is a message that works. Diane Feinstein and her ilk cannot be converted and we do not control the media. I am not saying we should give up the PR battle (especially on the Internet), but I think our best efforts go into letting politicians know they will lose their jobs over this and taking fence sitters to the range. (let us be unified in these last two things).

beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 06:55 PM
Have I not been clear? I'm opposed to saying they're just for sport. I'm opposed to saying they're just for anti-tyranny. Maybe there is no middle ground, but I'm still going to try to find it.

ZeSpectre
January 26, 2013, 07:49 PM
Maybe there is no middle ground, but I'm still going to try to find it

I wish you the best of luck.

I've been looking for 20+ years and haven't found one so as of this most recent round of aggression against our rights I stopped looking and drew a line that says here is where I stand, no "compromise" no apology, and if one doesn't like the principals upon which this country was founded and has operated then there are PLENTY of other places to which one can move.

beatledog7
January 26, 2013, 07:54 PM
ZeSpectre,

I'm not looking for a compromise on RKBA, just for a new message that helps preserve it.

Spats McGee
January 26, 2013, 09:23 PM
How about we just call them "semi-automatic rifles?" An AR is a semi-automatic rifle. A Winchester Model 100 is a semi-automatic rifle. A 10/22 is a semi-automatic rifle. We may be better served by: (a) Keeping It Simple; and (b) focusing on the mechanical aspects.

Ehtereon11B
January 26, 2013, 09:26 PM
I like Modern Sporting Rifle. It is simpler than "semi-automatic" because that leads the media to believe that if you just "remove" the "semi" and it becomes a dreaded automatic or assault weapon. I fully embrace semi-automatic weapon. To a sane and reasonable person it tells you much about the operation of the rifle just by placing it in that category.

junyo
January 27, 2013, 12:03 AM
Nice rant, junyo, and it proves my point.

You say quite adamantly that it's a weapon, made for killing. And while I agree that ARs can serve effectively in that role, most of them in civilian hands will never kill anyone. The message that such vehemence as yours sends is a major reason why the anti's think we're all itching to shoot someone.

Is there no middle ground among us? Are we all so wedded to our preferred terminology that we can't get around it? We complain about antis calling ARs assault rifles, saying we don't assault people with them and they're not select fire. Yet we insist on saying they're for killing people, then we say we probably won't ever use them for killing people, so nobody should fear them.

Look, I fully understand the need for a hedge against tyranny, but the antis don't. That message has proven grossly ineffective with the vast majority of those who want to ban ARs. We need to find a message that works. Our shrill cry that these are the instruments of freedom, though true, is failing to change anyone's mind.
I said I was a weapon, I didn't say it was made for killing. By accepting the anti's premise that weapons are 'made for killing', you've already given away the store. The rest is just the terms of the surrender.

Definition of WEAPON

1
: something (as a club, knife, or gun) used to injure, defeat, or destroy

It's not being wedded to terminology. It's about debasing the language, and being forced to lie, and getting pushed further and further down a path of illogic and rose tinted glasses. A weapon isn't 'made for killing'. It's a tool, made to cause damage to things. That damage has no morality, it has no intent. It can be used for ill or for good, justified or unjust. The only reason why 'weapon' has a negative connotation is because of conversations like this one, where we've ceded the point, and agreed to fight on the enemy's ground. I see no need to apologize or dissemble about the fact that I own and am prepared to use weapons for legal sport, or for the defense of me and mine. People put food on their table with weapons. People defend their homes with weapons. There are a great many people alive and free because of men with weapons and good intent, standing against those with bad. So I refuse to buy into, by meekly accepting my opponents terms and logic or by veiling my purpose, this moral equivalent argument that a good person with a weapon is the philosophical equal of a bad person with one - because all weapons are evil - ,or that it is good and proper to let voting age adults be terrified of a word.

Once upon a time that was understood that good people could use and recreate with weapons, which is why so many sports are of martial origin; we don't throw the javelin because someone thought it looked cool, we did it to practice throwing spears at the enemy, and then at some point it morphed into a fun activity. But now we're in a time where the idea, that I, as a tax paying, law abiding adult might want to own a weapon give hippies the vapors. I'm sorry (not really), but if someone can't wrap their brain around the fact that empowering good people to take care of themselves, to be prepared gasp! do harm if needed to things that threaten them is a good thing, then there's no hope for them. Or the society that cuddles them. And in the end, you can call it what you like, they will think you're a blood thristy murderer in training anyway, because it rationalizes away their own worthlessness.

It wasn't a rant, sir. It was a statement of principle. I refuse to take one more step towards infantilizing this country. I refuse to aid and abet the half of the country that want to hide under the sheets and hope the bad stuff goes away by magic. If you want to tilt at that particular windmill, good luck, godspeed, and pack a lunch, but I'm done.

KAS1981
January 27, 2013, 02:22 AM
I hate the term "modern sporting rifle."

It is a semi-automatic rifle. That's it, that's all.

klyph
January 27, 2013, 07:24 AM
They are semi automatic rifles. A technically accurate term devoid of political bias. Yes they have detachable magazines and pistol grips, adjustable stocks and threaded barrels. Those features do not warrant a seperate classification. Assault weapon is an agenda driven semantic with clear political motivations, as is modern sporting rifle. The more specific you are, the easier it is to break up arms into different classifications that can be restricted. I support the second amendment, but... assualt weapons, hicap pistols, sniper rifles. They are arms. The whole objective is to classify them as something other than arms. Refer to them as arms. Arms are protected from infringement, assault weapons and modern sporting rifles are not.

76shuvlinoff
January 27, 2013, 07:40 AM
Once upon a time that was understood that good people could use and recreate with weapons, which is why so many sports are of martial origin; we don't throw the javelin because someone thought it looked cool, we did it to practice throwing spears at the enemy, and then at some point it morphed into a fun activity. But now we're in a time where the idea, that I, as a tax paying, law abiding adult might want to own a weapon give hippies the vapors. I'm sorry (not really), but if someone can't wrap their brain around the fact that empowering good people to take care of themselves, to be prepared gasp! do harm if needed to things that threaten them is a good thing, then there's no hope for them. Or the society that cuddles them. And in the end, you can call it what you like, they will think you're a blood thristy murderer in training anyway, because it rationalizes away their own worthlessness.

This! This all over the damn place!

I may need to print and frame that. Well said.

beatledog7
January 27, 2013, 08:11 AM
Easy there, junyo, I'm on your side. I have the same goal you have: to stop the anti-gun trend. I agree with just about everything you posted as principles, but we're not fighting a principled adversary. We cannot defeat the antis with principles, facts, or time-honored truths about self-reliance. The anti doesn't ever hear those kinds of things.

Let me state it again: it's not about what we know to be true or untrue; it's about what antis perceive. That's how messaging works, and it's at messaging that we're failing so badly.

RetiredUSNChief
January 27, 2013, 08:38 AM
"Modern rifles" or "modern firearms" at most. No reference to sporting, self defense, home defense, or anything else.

Every product is subject to improvements on a wide variety of areas based on research, development, and field experience. What was the bees knees a couple decades ago isn't necessarily so today. Firearms are no different.

Not too long ago, long guns with pistol grips weren't even a thought for a hunting rifle, nor for self-defense. Ergonomics changed that, as it did for so many other things.

Visual appearances change all the time because such things appeal to people. This isn't something that's only true for fashion clothing...it's every bit as applicable to firearms as well.

I would like to see us get away from the "assault rifle" term, with respect to civilian firearms. I'm having a hard time seeing that happen, though.

But who knows? As a Boomer Baby who grew up during the height of the Cold War, the end of the Cold Was wasn't something I saw something that would happen when it did. Perhaps I'll be pleasantly surprised with this, as well.

:):)

KAS1981
January 27, 2013, 10:05 PM
Modern compared to what? They've been around a while.

Would you refer to a Ruger 10/22 as "modern"?

huntsman
January 28, 2013, 12:14 AM
most generic gun names relate to the method of action cycling so semi-auto rifle works for me, I don't care what idiot media or uninformed citizens call it.

Skribs
January 28, 2013, 12:05 PM
It doesn't matter whether or not you want to buy a MSR, you should support it being legal in all its parts.

RetiredUSNChief
January 29, 2013, 03:33 AM
Modern compared to what? They've been around a while.

Would you refer to a Ruger 10/22 as "modern"?


In my opinion, there is no need to go any further in the description. But there certainly isn't anything wrong with doing that, depending on the circumstances.

If you want to call a semi-automatic rifle a semi-automatic rifle, more power to you. It's as accurate as anything else.

A muzzeloading rifle made from stainless or other modern steels is also a "modern rifle", because it uses advances in modern technology to improve and construct it.

And yes, a Ruger 10/22 is a modern rifle.


Firearms can be described any number of ways...pick and choose what works best for you in whatever circumstances you find yourself.

The OP is asking his question as a way of addressing methods of countering the intentionally negative labels the gun-control crowd has tagged some firearms with in order to place them in an extremely bad light. To that end, our postings should themselves be positive. They should give people good ideas in how to discuss/describe such weapons.


Place any number of descriptive terms you wish to describe whatever particular weapon you want. They should be accurate enough to get your point across to people that the weapons you're talking about aren't military assault weapons.

Alaska444
January 29, 2013, 04:33 AM
I did a search on "modern sporting rifle" after perusing the thread on the heavily boycotted and now all but canceled Eastern Outdoors Show:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=696041

There are many news stories about this, but here is one from The Washington Post, dated 24 January:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/pa-outdoors-show-focus-of-boycott-after-ban-on-assault-weapons-is-postponed-indefinitely/2013/01/24/2a255f9e-664a-11e2-889b-f23c246aa446_story.html

A brief quote from the article:



One could argue that those comments are rather Fuddish, but that’s neither here nor there.

So, back to my point: Are we presenting a united front when we call the civilian versions of rifles modeled on what were originally military designs “modern sporting rifles”?

I know they have sporting purposes. I know they have utility purposes. I know they are the best form of small arms to hold in defense against tyranny. And I know we have gun owners on all sides of the argument over what to call them and how to describe them. But is the moniker “modern sporting rifle” broad enough to be applied to a cadre of platforms which many supporters of RKBA view as the most effective last resort “anti-tyranny” device on the civilian market and which they own predominantly because of that view?

It’s been beaten to death on this and other forums, but the national coverage being afforded this event shines a light on it once again. Plenty of anti-gun people are aware of what was going to happen but now is not happening in Harrisburg, and they’ll also be keenly aware of how divided the gun community is on how it views these kinds of rifles, the ones antis incorrectly but almost unanimously call “assault rifles.”

My view is that supporters of RKBA and 2A should somehow link arms on this and figure out what to call these rifles. In the past I suggested the term “operator configurable rifle” for the AR. It’s a term that makes sense in that it’s both technically accurate and broad enough to cover all the ways in which the platform is employed. It also de-emphasizes all the "bad" stuff the antis throw out. It’s not perfect, nor is it the only option. But using it -- or any standardized term -- beats the heck out of fighting amongst ourselves over what we should call them.

If the antis can unite in labeling these firearms, why can’t we? It would be a step toward presenting a united pro-2a front, a feat at which we consistently fail.
Sorry, but adopting political correctness is not the answer. Educate folks on good old fashioned values and why the founding fathers created the 2A. Sorry, I can't go along with any political correctness, that is not the answer in my opinion.

beatledog7
January 29, 2013, 08:07 AM
Messaging can be effective and still avoid being straight up PC nonsense. It is not a dichotomy.

OilyPablo
January 29, 2013, 08:36 AM
Focus: NO COMPROMISE.

12131
January 29, 2013, 08:53 AM
The antis' ultimate goal is to ban all privately owned firearms. They will pretend middle ground this and half ground that, but, make no mistakes about it, they only have one goal. Why can't some gun owners get that through their head?

12131
January 29, 2013, 08:55 AM
It is sad that this is what the world has come to. The common citizen is so far divorced from the concept of armed self defense that any reference that that icky old military is damning. So we'll call it a modern sport rifle. Or how about a 'unicorn peace and love launcher'? Maybe a 'rainbow gumdrop dispenser'?

Well, eff that. It's a weapon. The reason why it looks a lot like what the military carries is because the people in the military use weapons, as weapons, every day. Therefore what they've found works/does not work, is pertinent, since in ones daily life as an accountant in Topeka, one does not get to personally test whether or not his 'fairy twinkle shooter' will work when it truly comes down to the come down. Which is why every flashlight on the face of the earth is 'tactical'. It's way 'mil-spec' is a marketing term. In a million other product types it's perfectly acceptable to admit that yeah, we're aping the military. But non-gendered and unpersonified higher power forbid that in the one area where the military has a monopoly on daily experience that we emulate them

It's. A. Damn. Weapon.

I won't apologize for that, I won't hide it, I won't do this lawyerly parsing of phrases like it means something. It's words, and more words, and the conversation gets dumber and dumber, because we've ceded the fact that not only is it okay to have irrational fear, those fears are a valid basis for policy. Do you think it will be more acceptable to people who are too incurious to educate themselves that the evil black baby killer has been re-branded? It still has the shoulder thing that goes up, which obviously makes it a weapon of mass destruction. Call it a 'tulip sunset drizzler', call it a 'blueberry muffin slingshot', call it a 'freedom fire stick'; the next time someone gets shot, we'll be right back here.
I thank you, sir.:)

SidRon
January 29, 2013, 02:05 PM
I would go with military service rifle for select fire versions carried by the military and civilian service rifle for semiauto versions carried by civilians. I always found the term modern sporting rifle to be deliberately misleading since the sport that it excels at involves running around and shooting dozens of human shaped targets in the fastest time possible.

beatledog7
January 29, 2013, 06:26 PM
Mods, please close this thread. It now bears no resemblance to the thread I started, and my original words have been so twisted and misconstrued that the thread looks like just another whiny little compromise thread. It was never that, but cooler heads don't seem to prevail.

mljdeckard
January 29, 2013, 06:33 PM
I do agree that we as a community need to really make more of an effort to expose ARs as hunting weapons. The antis are getting away with saying that they aren't, can't, and shouldn't be used for hunting. We are losing that part of the propoganda war.

gym
January 29, 2013, 06:53 PM
It's just a rifle. It shouldn't require a description. It's just a semiautomatic rifle in 223. The problem as I see it, is,"as I said yesterday" , is the tactical look of the rifle. If it were to have a different stock like one of the members posted, in that" realtree", pattern, used for hunting rifles,along with a stainless barrell and a 10 round mag was in it along with a scope, the chances are that most people would not give it a second look.
The same goes for taking a 30-06 "deer rifle" and converting it with a large Mag, and a synthetic black stock, and a red dot.
This would make a great print ad or tv ad. I honestlly think that most non gun people aren't aware of the difference between a machine gun, and a semiauto weapon.
Also getting shooting teams to use AR type rifles for Olympic type events would show that the rifle can be used for any purpose.Perhaps a stars and stripes pattern for a color scheme. The great American rifle.
What we need is an Ad campaign, promoting the rifle as an all around American rifle, from the farm to the range, it would sell the gun better than any other stratagy. Showing Police, Farmers, and Target Shooters, along with Border patrol officers, all using the same platform, with different purposes could make the gun more acceptable to mainstream americans who don't get it.

rsilvers
January 29, 2013, 07:36 PM
I don't like calling them "sporting" rifles - as I don't use them for sport. Some people do, but they are weapons to me. I think we just need to make the case that we have the right to protect ourselves.

I strongly disagree with promoting the concept that guns need a "sporting purpose" to be ok to own - that is why we have the stupid 1968 gun control law import ban which stopped the Walther PPK from being importable because it was too small to have a sporting purpose. So now we have to make do with PPKs made "under license" in Alabama.

SUR - Sport/Utility rifle is a decent term, as that means sport or utility and compares them to SUVs.

In the end, I vote for calling them "modern rifles."

SidRon
January 29, 2013, 07:37 PM
Say goodbye to your bolt action rifles once the non gun public realizes that they are actually sniper rifles.

c4v3man
January 29, 2013, 07:55 PM
Some olympic arms would actually be banned under Feinsteins AWB, especially pistols where the magazine is often exposed. Even bolt/single shot target rifles have "evil" features like pistol grips, etc.

http://www.topairgun.com/files/2019619/uploaded/Feinwerkbau-Model-800-Air-Rifle-Medium-Grip_FWB-401401_zm4.jpg

I bet if you showed someone that picture, they'd say no-one needed a firearm that was that dangerous... and it's an airgun.

I think Modern Sporting Rifle is better than "assault weapon" or "weapon of mass destruction", and is probably the easiest term to use collectively. While there's no need to describe it in any particular way, I would agree that something needs to be done about the bastardization of our language in the media. And people don't want specifics... they just want a generic term that can classify certain types of items. Modern Sporting Rifle seems fine...

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