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Thread: May I suggest a different choice of words when referencing one's firearm?

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    Question May I suggest a different choice of words when referencing one's firearm?

    The media and [so-called] law enforcement always refer to firearms of any type as "weapons." The term weapon, at least to my ears and I suspect the majority of the brainwashed masses, tends to connote an item used in an offensive nature as opposed to a defensive nature. A weapon sounds menacing.

    Might I suggest that we use the term "firearm" when referencing those items we own that are best characterized as "firearms?" I'm not sure when and where the term weapon came into play in describing what we know as firearms, but I'm certain is was calculated to elicit a specific response in those people who hear that term. A negative one at that.

    Furthermore, using an opponent's terms to define us and our property can never be a good thing. Just a thought I've had for some time that I'd throw out for consideration.
    Last edited by Tony_B; 07-10-2012 at 09:10 PM.

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    NO!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_B View Post

    Might I suggest that we use the term "firearm" when referencing those items we own that are best characterized as "firearms?".
    Agreed. I already do this. Consistent, non-threatening terminology can only benefit us. If anyone doesn't agree with that, then try calling your pocketknife a pig-sticker, and see where that gets ya.

    Speaking if knives, the same applies, and maybe even more so. In many places, if a knife is agreed to be a 'weapon', then it can get you in trouble. If it is a tool, that is different. One reason I like my Leatherman.

    Never, ever, acknowledge, or permit an LEO to refer to anything on you as a weapon. He is likely stealthily using the terminology to preheat your goose. "What weapon, oh, you mean my firearm/utility-tool? Gotcha."


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    Campaign Veteran ak56's Avatar
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    I think I'll call mine 'George'.
    No right is held more sacred, or is more carefully guarded, by the common law than the right of every individual to the possession and control of his own person, free from all restraint or interference of others, unless by clear and unquestionable authority of law. Union Pacific Rail Co. vs Botsford as quoted in Terry v Ohio.


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    Regular Member Maine Expat's Avatar
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    Fararm, gun, self defense weapon. Its all good.

    But yes, many people do get the wrong idea and many intentionally promote said wrong idea to scare the unknowing into deeper ignorance.

    Carry on!
    “Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.” ― Plato

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    Regular Member sharkey's Avatar
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    I'm not going PC

    Sorry. Mine is a weapon. Maybe I'll start referring to it as my instrument of death.

    If you're looking for a warm fuzzy moniker call it a peacekeeper.

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    Regular Member twoskinsonemanns's Avatar
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    I carry a blaster.
    "I support the ban on assault weapons" - Donald Trump

    We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission - Ayn Rand

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    Regular Member sharkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Merlin View Post
    Agreed. I already do this. Consistent, non-threatening terminology can only benefit us. If anyone doesn't agree with that, then try calling your pocketknife a pig-sticker, and see where that gets ya.

    Speaking if knives, the same applies, and maybe even more so. In many places, if a knife is agreed to be a 'weapon', then it can get you in trouble. If it is a tool, that is different. One reason I like my Leatherman.

    Never, ever, acknowledge, or permit an LEO to refer to anything on you as a weapon. He is likely stealthily using the terminology to preheat your goose. "What weapon, oh, you mean my firearm/utility-tool? Gotcha."

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    Gotcha how? He carries his service weapon, not tool. I'm not legally barred from carrying weapons of the type we're discussing. Now if s/he refers to my weapon as a criminal device then we'll worry about semantics. But in what jurisdiction/court could someone respectfully argue "He was up to no good. He acknowledged he was carrying a weapon, not a firearm"?

    I've gotta look at your location. ETA. Vegas? I don't think you should even fret over this.
    Last edited by sharkey; 07-11-2012 at 05:32 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sharkey View Post
    I don't think you should even fret over this.
    Nope, no fret, just discussion. Part of seeing our agenda of OC succeed is getting civilians on our side. If I have to friendly up my language a bit to achieve that, a small price to pay.

    I prefer the term constitutionally-protected-constitution-protector.


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    I have to respectfully disagree with this as well. It is a weapon. My pocket knife can be used as a tool; I can cut through meat with it to make bite size chunks, I can open a box, I can saw at wood if I need some kindling. My gun is a weapon. I never remove it from it's holster to hold something down with its weight, and I sure as heck don't use it to hammer nails. If it comes out of its holster to be used, it will be used as a weapon.

    What people need to be more comfortable with is us, not the "tool" or "weapon".

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    "The mind is the weapon, everything else is a tool."

    Having said that, my firearm/sidearm/revolver/S&W 329PD/Glock M23 is still a weapon. I could care less about people who think that there might be a difference between the two. Not referring to the OP here, just the type of people that *might* be swayed by calling something different will actually change their minds about it.

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    I don't use my "firearm" to hammer nails and it's worthless as a wrench or screwdriver.

    However, I have heard of someone using it as a drill. Unfortunately, that resulted in a tragedy.

    I think the sheeple need to get more comfortable with the term "weapon".

    weap·on

    [wep-uhn] Show IPA noun

    1.
    any instrument or device for use in attack or defense in combat, fighting, or war, as a sword, rifle, or cannon.

    2. anything used against an opponent, adversary, or victim:

    IDK about the rest of you, but this defines what I carry fairly well. ^^^^

    -
    Last edited by tcox4freedom; 07-11-2012 at 05:16 PM.

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    Regular Member papa bear's Avatar
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    go ahead and use the term "weapon",in NC a weapon is illegal.

    the Brady bunch loves to use the word "weapon", because it does conjure up the aggressive use of the term.

    a weapon is an offensive item that is used to kill. period. not a device for the production of meat, or to protect your selves from BGs, or just a firearm we love to shoot down range

    if you use the term "weapon" then you are the same as the Brady bunch
    Luke 22:36 ; 36Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

    "guns are like a Parachute, if you don't have one when you need it, you will not need one again"
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    i you call a CHP a CCW then you are really stupid. period.

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    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_B View Post
    ... A weapon sounds menacing.

    Might I suggest that we use the term "firearm" when referencing those items we own....
    Well, it really does depend on the firearm in question.

    For example, in NRA Pistol, Rifle, and Shotgun courses, we very specifically do not use the term "weapon." These are safety and shooting courses, not defensive. There should hopefully never be a need to refer to your $20,000 Perazzi shotgun as a weapon.

    But in the NRA Personal Protection courses, we do call them weapons, because that's what they are.

    Especially for OC firearms, I like the term "sidearm." Handguns, after all, are designed to be weapons carried at our side when do not expect that we will need a weapon.
    Last edited by MAC702; 07-11-2012 at 07:03 PM.
    "It's not important how many people I've killed. What's important is how I get along with the people who are still alive" - Jimmy the Tulip

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    Quote Originally Posted by papa bear View Post
    go ahead and use the term "weapon",in NC a weapon is illegal.

    the Brady bunch loves to use the word "weapon", because it does conjure up the aggressive use of the term.

    a weapon is an offensive item that is used to kill. period. not a device for the production of meat, or to protect your selves from BGs, or just a firearm we love to shoot down range

    if you use the term "weapon" then you are the same as the Brady bunch
    Don't you think sticking your head in the sand and pretending it's something other than what it is makes you (or anyone in a rhetorical sense) more like the brady's than accepting it for what it is? Attacking an issue that's a non issue just because telling someone the sky is green when it's actually blue will make them pee their pants just a little less... seems to me like a huge waste of effort.

    A gun is a weapon is a weapon is a weapon. You don't open letters with a sword. You don't hang pictures with a bow. Brass knuckles don't make good dental tools, just good dentist bills.

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    Regular Member pfries's Avatar
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    Personally mine is medical device designed to save lives.
    It injects a large dose of minerals in a rapid manor necessary to saving lives.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwaterous View Post
    I have to respectfully disagree with this as well. It is a weapon. My pocket knife can be used as a tool; I can cut through meat with it to make bite size chunks, I can open a box, I can saw at wood if I need some kindling. My gun is a weapon. I never remove it from it's holster to hold something down with its weight, and I sure as heck don't use it to hammer nails. If it comes out of its holster to be used, it will be used as a weapon.

    What people need to be more comfortable with is us, not the "tool" or "weapon".
    There ya go!

    I generally have a smile on my face, hold doors for folks and say "hi, how ya doin?" and generally get pleasant replies in return. Starting this weekend, I'll see if the responses change much when I pick up my Bersa 45 and start OCing for the first time. I'm guessing friendly overtures will get mostly friendly responses with the usual OC questions right after.

    I won't have a recording devise to start with, but keep an eye on the Maine board for OC reports.
    “Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.” ― Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwaterous View Post
    Don't you think sticking your head in the sand and pretending it's something other than what it is makes you (or anyone in a rhetorical sense) more like the brady's than accepting it for what it is?
    I don't think anyone is suggesting that we pretend that it is something else. I think the OP's question is a valid one. Would/could our cause (OC, and firearms possession in general) benefit from a more public-friendly vocabulary? Sure, why not. Nobody is required to comply. We're just discussing whether it might benefit the cause. I for one think it couldn't hurt.

    I don't refer to my firearm as a "gat" (except maybe jokingly amongst gun-toting friends). Why? Cause it makes you sound like a wanna-be gangbanger.

    I don't refer to its use as "bussin' a cap", I use the the phrase "using justifiable lethal force".

    Is it wordplay? Sure. But a large part of winning over the hearts and minds of the civvies is using terminology that does not evoke a negative image in their minds. Kinda like that image at the top of the page, with the OC folks. The Admins of the site didn't choose a bunch of dudes that look like gangbangers (even though they might in fact be honor students with bad fashion sense). They chose people that look "normal". Because it is inclusive. "See, you too could be one of us, the few, the proud, the armed!" Not "We're a bunch of bad-mother-lovers" (even though some of us may well be).

    Yes, I think our cause benefits from non-threatening terminology, and demeanor. How many of you purposely are overly outgoing and amiable when you OC? I am. I open doors for old ladies, I make eye contact with employees of businesses, and make it a point to be super respectful. Why? Am I really that nice of a guy? Nah, not really. I'm a curmudgeon. But it is important to me that people have a positive image of OC, so I shed my usual surly presence in favor of a more likeable one. Because it benefits the cause. Hell, I even return my cart to the cart corral.

    Now get off my lawn.

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    I like "my self defense tool" best because that's what it really is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Merlin View Post
    I don't refer to my firearm as a "gat" (except maybe jokingly amongst gun-toting friends). Why? Cause it makes you sound like a wanna-be gangbanger.

    I don't refer to its use as "bussin' a cap", I use the the phrase "using justifiable lethal force".

    Is it wordplay? Sure. But a large part of winning over the hearts and minds of the civvies is using terminology that does not evoke a negative image in their minds. Kinda like that image at the top of the page, with the OC folks. The Admins of the site didn't choose a bunch of dudes that look like gangbangers (even though they might in fact be honor students with bad fashion sense). They chose people that look "normal". Because it is inclusive. "See, you too could be one of us, the few, the proud, the armed!" Not "We're a bunch of bad-mother-lovers" (even though some of us may well be).
    With all due respect, you just illustrated my point, not yours. You're not using wordplay, you're using the correct terminology and that makes you sound educated and less dangerous about the issue. People aren't afraid of police and military open carrying because they suspect (sometimes incorrectly) that they are trained and therefore will only deploy their weapons in a safe manner. If I discussed the issue with somebody who called it a gat, I would be afraid of them accidentally discharging it while showing off. If I discussed the issue with a person who explained that their "weapon was loaded but currently holstered unless there is a justifiable reason to display it or use deadly force in defense of my life or another" then I would feel perfectly comfortable standing next to that person because they know what they are doing.

    This is a politician's stand; use spin and wordplay to trick the general public into believing one outcome when there may be another. I refuse. I will be honest and straight forward about the weapon I carry and you will know you can trust me because I don't beat around the bush.

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    Regular Member WhistlingJack's Avatar
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    When I was still actively serving as an instructor for the NRA they constantly rammed this "It's not a weapon, its a firearm" down our throats, especially when teaching Boy Scouts.

    My Firearm is a weapon, that is the purpose for which it was designed. A weapon is a tool which has been constructed with such an application as to inflict harm on living things by design.

    Owning a weapon is the right of a free man, I as a free man own weaponry for the defense of my person and my liberty, and I as a free man bear the responsibility to employ the weaponry that I own only when it is in fact necessary to do so. I will not mask the nature of my weapon, the purpose for which it is designed, or my own responsibility in being able to do so by being lured into the application of more politically correct terms simply because there are people who care more about what something is called than what it is.

    Political Correctness is at its best an attempt to deceive even on the most minute levels, and at worst it is inellectual cowardice.

    It is also rare in fact to find someone who does not have an opinion on firearms ownership, just as you will rarely find someone who does not have an opinion on abortion. When someone has made up their mind to believe a certain thing, no amount of data, facts, or terminology will sway their opinion as they have made the choice to believe as they do. Once a person's mind is made up, only they can change their mind.

    I often ponder if those who are so adverse to calling a weapon what it truly is would ever actually posses the fortitude to use it when the time came, since they cannot even bring themselves to call it by what it is. Weaponry and its use is intrinsic to our nature just as is many other things. Firearms applications which are not weaponized are still applications that hone the use of a firearms capabilities, such as sports first grew among primitive populations as a means to teach teamwork and provide for the physical maintaineance which was critical to soldiery.

    TL DR Version
    -I reject with naught but bile and contempt any effort to spread Political Correctness to any facet of life, including how I reference my weapon. Too many have forgotten that to own a weapon, and bear the responsibility of its ownership is an intrinsic component of living free.
    Last edited by WhistlingJack; 07-12-2012 at 03:26 PM.
    "Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence ... From the hour the Pilgrims landed, to the present day, events, occurrences, and tendencies prove that to insure peace, security and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable . . . the very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that is good"
    -George Washington

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    Quote Originally Posted by WhistlingJack View Post
    When I was still actively serving as an instructor for the NRA they constantly rammed this "It's not a weapon, its a firearm" down our throats, especially when teaching Boy Scouts.

    My Firearm is a weapon, that is the purpose for which it was designed. A weapon is a tool which has been constructed with such an application as to inflict harm on living things by design.

    Owning a weapon is the right of a free man, I as a free man own weaponry for the defense of my person and my liberty, and I as a free man bear the responsibility to employ the weaponry that I own only when it is in fact necessary to do so. I will not mask the nature of my weapon, the purpose for which it is designed, or my own responsibility in being able to do so by being lured into the application of more politically correct terms simply because there are people who care more about what something is called than what it is.

    Political Correctness is at its best an attempt to deceive even on the most minute levels, and at worst it is inellectual cowardice.

    It is also rare in fact to find someone who does not have an opinion on firearms ownership, just as you will rarely find someone who does not have an opinion on abortion. When someone has made up their mind to believe a certain thing, no amount of data, facts, or terminology will sway their opinion as they have made the choice to believe as they do. Once a person's mind is made up, only they can change their mind.

    I often ponder if those who are so adverse to calling a weapon what it truly is would ever actually posses the fortitude to use it when the time came, since they cannot even bring themselves to call it by what it is. Weaponry and its use is intrinsic to our nature just as is many other things. Firearms applications which are not weaponized are still applications that hone the use of a firearms capabilities, such as sports first grew among primitive populations as a means to teach teamwork and provide for the physical maintaineance which was critical to soldiery.

    TL DR Version
    -I reject with naught but bile and contempt any effort to spread Political Correctness to any facet of life, including how I reference my weapon. Too many have forgotten that to own a weapon, and bear the responsibility of its ownership is an intrinsic component of living free.

    Excellent Post!!!

  23. #23
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhistlingJack View Post
    When I was still actively serving as an instructor for the NRA they constantly rammed this "It's not a weapon, its a firearm" down our throats, especially when teaching Boy Scouts....
    This is only when teaching basic safety, familiarization, and marksmanship classes.

    The NRA does use the term "weapon," appropriately, in the Personal Protection classes.
    "It's not important how many people I've killed. What's important is how I get along with the people who are still alive" - Jimmy the Tulip

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    Quote Originally Posted by Merlin View Post
    Agreed. I already do this. Consistent, non-threatening terminology can only benefit us. If anyone doesn't agree with that, then try calling your pocketknife a pig-sticker, and see where that gets ya.

    Speaking if knives, the same applies, and maybe even more so. In many places, if a knife is agreed to be a 'weapon', then it can get you in trouble. If it is a tool, that is different. One reason I like my Leatherman.

    Never, ever, acknowledge, or permit an LEO to refer to anything on you as a weapon. He is likely stealthily using the terminology to preheat your goose. "What weapon, oh, you mean my firearm/utility-tool? Gotcha."


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    There is a big difference in calling something what it is, and calling a knife a "pig sticker." Most states that recognize the right to bear arms, meaning all arms, normally refer to them in their statutes as weapons. Here in Ky, our license to carry a "concealed weapon" is called a "Concealed Deadly Wepaons License." I don't see a problem with calling a firearm, knife, baton, brass knuckles, etc., what they are, weapons. Now, the problem arises when our liberal media tries calling our firearms "assault weapons" or "assault rifles." It is not the term "weapon" or "rifle" that makes them sound menacing, it is the word "assault." People tend to realate assault with bad actions, which is all the term assault can be used for, because it is an action.
    Last edited by KYGlockster; 07-12-2012 at 10:23 PM.
    "I never in my life seen a Kentuckian without a gun..."-Andrew Jackson

    "Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect every one who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are ruined."-Patrick Henry; speaking of protecting the rights of an armed citizenry.

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    I never said there was anything wrong with referring to it by what it is, a weapon. The original question, and my statements, were more to the effect of this:

    Is there something to be gained, I.e. would it be better for our cause if we used terminology that is less threatening to the uninformed masses?

    No, you don't have to.
    No, you SHOULDN'T have to.
    But, is it in our collective best interest to put a non-threatening face on something that is, well, threatening?

    Is it silly? Yes. But is it worth it anyway, in spite of that fact? I think so. If you don't, understood. Agree to disagree on that one.

    The the liberal, uninformed media tend to like the term "Assault Weapon" for damn near everything. And it works, much to my dismay. We could learn something from that.

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