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Thread: More correct term: 'Firearm' or 'Weapon'

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    Regular Member GlockRDH's Avatar
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    More correct term: 'Firearm' or 'Weapon'

    Im starting to NOT use the word 'weapon' as often as 'firearm'...Weapon has different legal connotations...anything can be a weapon...Thoughts on this?

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    McX
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    i always thought this way: a firearm is a legal device, a weapon is a device used to commit a crime.

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    Founder's Club Member protias's Avatar
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    I use firearm majority of the time, gun sometimes, weapon almost never unless it is used to commit a crime.
    No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson (1776)

    If you go into a store, with a gun, and rob it, you have forfeited your right to not get shot - Joe Deters, Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Prosecutor

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    McX
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    there is also the option to call them by their assigned names, in my case: Smacky, Disruptor, the mag., chromie...............

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    This is the square vs rectangle debate. While weapon does seem to have a negative connotation to it, technically all firearms are weapons but not all weapons are firearms. Here is the definition of a weapon from dictionary.com:

    1. device for attack or defense 2. something used against an adversary

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    Make it hurt where it counts the most...,

    for me it would be in my wallet. If you've got kids, give'm five bucks the next time you say weapon instead of gun, firearm, self defense tool, whatever, besides the "W" word. If you've got a security, law enforcement, or military background, this might get a little expensive at first, but it does work. We used a similar approach when I took my NRA instructor classes. I think just about every one contributed at least a few bucks to the "Pizza for Lunch Fund" on the first day. We didn't have nearly as much pizza the next day as we did the first, go figure!!!

    Of course, if you want to try this method but can't think of anyone to give your money to, just send me a pm and I'll be glad to help you with that one too!

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    Regular Member GlockRDH's Avatar
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    'weapon' also has certain legal connotations...and NONE of us want our arms to be used as weapons.

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    Regular Member TyGuy's Avatar
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    If you used a firearm to stop someone with murderous intent would it then be a weapon? IDK

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    Regular Member littlewolf's Avatar
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    I to use the word firearm,a weapon can be anything. It also depends on how you use it in a sentance i.e.; I used my firearm in self defence against a man who pointed his weapon at me.

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    A firearm can be a weapon, but a weapon is not always a firearm.

    Think of it this way;
    rocks are made of minerals, but minerals are not rocks.

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    Regular Member Motofixxer's Avatar
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    I tend to use "firearm" more now in general conversation. I will use "weapon" as a broader term when referencing a generic potentially dangerous tool. And don't typically use "gun" unless talking with closer friends or relatives. People have a negative bias toward certain words so I try to avoid triggering those while in general conversation.
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    Regular Member Carcharodon's Avatar
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    A "long gun" is a rifle, a "hand gun" is a pistol or gun. Both are weapons, both are also firearms. When I'm shooting with friends or in a relaxed environment they go by the "friendlier" names. When I OC, I carry a weapon. Weapons have a very specific purpose, that's why I carry one.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks."
    Thomas Jefferson

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    Regular Member oliverclotheshoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Motofixxer View Post
    I tend to use "firearm" more now in general conversation. I will use "weapon" as a broader term when referencing a generic potentially dangerous tool. And don't typically use "gun" unless talking with closer friends or relatives. People have a negative bias toward certain words so I try to avoid triggering those while in general conversation.
    same here
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    Regular Member theoicarry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carcharodon View Post
    A "long gun" is a rifle, a "hand gun" is a pistol or gun. Both are weapons, both are also firearms. When I'm shooting with friends or in a relaxed environment they go by the "friendlier" names. When I OC, I carry a weapon. Weapons have a very specific purpose, that's why I carry one.
    I feel for our benefit, firearm is prefer ed. However: I go back to the 1960's when a firearm was referred to a weapon and a gun was something other. I cannot state the meaning at that time here. Lots of push ups done if you confused the two?
    Firearm, I like that the best.
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    Regular Member Outdoorsman1's Avatar
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    I have used both "weapon" and "gun" in past posts. I very seldom use "firearm".

    This is an excellent topic and raises question I have never thought of...

    I am thiniking it is more of a case of "You say "Tomato I say Tomato"....

    "Weapon, Firearm, Gun,... basically different words discribing the same thing...

    I have always had a preference for weapon, (just a personal choice), but considering the thought that almost any object can be used as a weapon, I am re-thinking... on using firearm instead. As stated, gun, does have a negative view from the general public.

    Outdoorsman1

    PS:.. I also think "Pistol" would be appropriate....(?)
    Last edited by Outdoorsman1; 04-15-2011 at 12:08 PM. Reason: add info...

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    I carry a firearm, unless I'm not, the I just have a weapon on me. Bad guys carry guns, good guys carry firearms, especially in court.

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    I use the term "firearm". Actually a firearm is a potential weapon. A fork is an eating utensil until it is used to stab someone. Then it becomes a weapon, unless of course you're a cannibal.

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    Regular Member MKEgal's Avatar
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    I usually say or write 'pistol'.
    Less emotionally charged than 'gun' or 'weapon', fewer syllables & more specific than 'firearm'.
    (I don't think I've ever told someone I have a weapon.)

    e.g.: "I am declaring an unloaded, encased pistol in my checked bag."
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    Regular Member GlockRDH's Avatar
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    I think im with phred...a firearm is a POTENTIAL weapon... its not a weapon until its used as such and hte judge and DA call it that :-)

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    I like firearm, rifle, and pistol. Weapon is OK but it includes knives, baseball bats, and cruise missiles. Just my 2 cents.

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    Founder's Club Member protias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrclen View Post
    I like firearm, rifle, and pistol. Weapon is OK but it includes knives, baseball bats, and cruise missiles. Just my 2 cents.
    No love for flamethrowers?
    No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson (1776)

    If you go into a store, with a gun, and rob it, you have forfeited your right to not get shot - Joe Deters, Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Prosecutor

    I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians. - George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

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    Regular Member XDFDE45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrclen View Post
    Weapon is OK but it includes knives, baseball bats, and cruise missiles.
    Well put. Weapons is such a broad term that ANYTHING that can be used for assaulting or even killing someone can be labeled a "weapon".
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    There was a discussion of this terminology when I was going through instruction to become an NRA certified instructor. The NRA encourages instructors to minimize the use of the word "weapon" in favor of "firearm." Because "weapon" evokes negative connotations in many people. I don't believe it is political correctness as much as public relations-- although perhaps that's a fine line.

    Those of us with military backgrounds have "weapon" ingrained in us, so did the LEO's taking the instructor course. It takes a fair amount of concentration for us to break the habit of saying "weapon."

    I disagree that all firearms are weapons. Some firearms are designed to functions as weapons and some are not. As has been pointed out, many things can be used as weapons despite not being explicitly designed as such, e.g., a heavy ashtray, a vehicle, a big dog, kitchen knives and large stick, a can of Lysol. I would only say that some firearms are designed to function as weapons while others are designed for recreational or sport use yet have a great potential to function as effective weapons.

    Of course firearms used by the military and the police are designed to function as weapons. So are those, presumably, carried by OCers; although that's questionable, since I've seen a number of single action revolvers at OC events. I would consider a single action revolver to be a hunting or target shooting firearm, and insofar as it is a "weapon" it is an obsolete weapon in the hands of 99.999% of shooters. Not to say it's ineffective, because swords are obsolete but potentially very effective weapons. SA revolvers and swords are just comparatively ineffective when contrasted with DA revolvers or autoloaders.

    The effectiveness of any object used as a weapon, regardless of intended design, is largely dependent upon the skill of the user. A trained and experienced knife fighter is probably a greater threat with a large sharp nail in his hands than a novice is with an expensive "ninja tanto combat" blade.
    Last edited by Shotgun; 04-15-2011 at 03:21 PM.
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    Regular Member Outdoorsman1's Avatar
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    I am leaning towards pistol... not to split hairs, but maybe even "sidearm"...(?)

    Outdoorsman1

    Edited to add.... Ok Ok...I'll admit.. I posted this post to also check out my new signiture quote....
    Last edited by Outdoorsman1; 04-15-2011 at 03:27 PM. Reason: add info...
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    Founder's Club Member protias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Outdoorsman1 View Post
    I am leaning towards pistol... not to split hairs, but maybe even "sidearm"...(?)

    Outdoorsman1

    Edited to add.... Ok Ok...I'll admit.. I posted this post to also check out my new signiture quote....
    I've noticed Nik uses the term sidearm.
    No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson (1776)

    If you go into a store, with a gun, and rob it, you have forfeited your right to not get shot - Joe Deters, Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Prosecutor

    I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians. - George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

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