Facts Matter In The Gun Debate, Just Not to Adam Weinstein


Anti-Gun Propaganda "Journalist", Adam Weinstein
Anti-Gun Propaganda “Journalist”, Adam Weinstein

Fayetteville, AR – -(Ammoland.com)- Adam Weinstein is someone who thinks the facts don’t matter.

That’s poor form for a journalist, but then, as he’s one of the founders of The Trace, an on-line blog funded by Bloomberg that has shown a distaste for accuracy in the past, perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised.

What specifically drew my attention to him was an article that he wrote for The Washington Post, titled, “The NRA and its allies use jargon to bully gun-control supporters.”

According to him, when gun control advocates get corrected for their misuse of terms like assault rifle, machine gun, and clip, they’ve been “gunsplained: harangued with the pedantry of the more-credible-than-thou firearms owner, admonished that your inferior knowledge of guns and their nomenclature puts an asterisk next to your opinion on gun control.”

Adam Weinstein

His use of a term that he has mangled together out of the equally wretched mansplained is a strike against him already, but it may be that he has not encountered George Orwell’s advice regarding abuse of the English language for political ends. I suggest it for his reading list.

He does, at least, acknowledge that rifles are rarely used in homicides and that it was the Violence Policy Center that recommended using sloppy language about guns in order to get as many banned as possible. And he points out that how a handgun operates, “single action vs. double action, or hammer- vs. striker-fired,” matters in discussions of use of force by the police. In other words, he’s demonstrated that he’s someone who does know better.

And yet Adam Weinstein argues that we who support gun rights are in the wrong here, that “‘assault weapons’ [are] easier to define, and harder to defend, with time. I know that an AR-15 is not a machine gun or an assault rifle, that its rounds are not high-powered, that it accepts magazines, not clips—any law that seeks to ban them should be written with precision.”

And there it is. We’re gunsplainers, and we need to be more accommodating to people who want to violate our rights. But let’s take some parallel cases. I regularly see debates about evolution and climate change in which one side has no idea what the word, theory, means in science and don’t understand the difference between weather and climate.

And it’s hard to be respectful to people who refuse to learn the subject they’re pontificating on. It’s the same as trying to discuss calculus with someone who doesn’t know what the slope of a line is and has no interest in finding out.

Worse than that, it’s the same as arguing with such a person who also wants to impose laws that were cooked up in that state of ignorance.

My experience in discussions about guns in America is that there are some people who cannot be reached. They oppose gun rights and will not change that. And they often know the facts, but use loose language to frustrate gun owners into silence and to deceive the uninvolved. In a debate, we have to remember that we’re not really trying to convince the declared opponents. The ones we want to reach are in the audience, and I have found many who are willing to listen. The task here is to figure out the difference and then to make an appeal in favor of gun rights to the latter group.

Unfortunately, Adam Weinstein isn’t one. His response when I suggested that facts matter was to block me, making me think that he’s incapable of defending his position. And I’m not surprised, as this is the standard behavior of committed advocates who want to curtail rights. Since he’s unwilling to engage in discourse, whether sloppy or precise, I’m left having to give him a simple no.

No, I won’t give up. No, I won’t comply. And no, I won’t allow his dismissive attitude to force me into silence.


Greg Camp
Greg Camp

About Greg Camp

Greg Camp has taught English composition and literature since 1998 and is the author of six books, including a western, The Willing Spirit, and Each One, Teach One, with Ranjit Singh on gun politics in America. His books can be found on Amazon. He tweets @gregcampnc.

  • 5 thoughts on “Facts Matter In The Gun Debate, Just Not to Adam Weinstein

    1. If you look up “journalist” in the dictionary it explains: Liar, person involved in socialist/communist propaganda, generally a hypocrite, member of the democrat national committee or/and the CPOA Communist Party of America, refers to anyone with whom they disagree as a “racist”

    2. Weinstein is at best a purposeful manipulator of words, phrases, and jargon, like many of his peers. They minister to the ignorant, the uninformed, and the vulnerable by cloaking their propaganda in authoritarian terms. Few of these sheep bother to do any validation, verification, or “truthing”. At their intellectual levels, most just accept crap as…. crap. These are our adversaries: You generally cannot reason with them, nor can they refrain from emotional, panic-driven crowd mania each time a criminal uses a firearm in a spectacularized manner, e.g. a massacre of innocents. In summary, we must remain strong, focused, and articulate if we expect to sway opinion of those who have not yet succumbed to the mania.

    3. Maybe that coffin nail hanging out of his mouth will mean another one bites the dust. Team USA on his shirt and a flag on his hat really impresses me beyond reason-NOT.

    4. I think these are pretty good points.
      If you are going to debate (or pretend to) a subject, it would seem to at least have an idea about the subject matter.
      I have found that you can present a sound argument about the Armalite “Stoner” Rifle with all of the information in the world to back up your argument and, if the opposition is deaf, dumb and blind, then all of that research won’t matter one bit.
      That’s the way it is with the “anti-gunners”. Their minds are made up and they don’t want to be confused by the facts.
      Besides, you’d think the “anti-gunners” would embrace a rifle named “Stoner”.

      1. Martin, one other way to take the wind from their sails is to not use the terms they have defined. We are not pro-gun, neither are they anti-gun; we are pro rights, and they are anti-rights. Many of those opposed to our 2A, are also opposed to our speaking out against them. Remember Berkeley? Also, since they give the word gun a negative connotation, I use the word firearm.

        I also use their words and ideas against them, they hate that. Rather than fight for “gun rights” and against “anti-gun” laws, I fight against unjust laws that discriminate against certain classes of citizens and create privileged classes, such as age biases, and how making the cost of ownership is discriminating against the poor, etc.

        I got a lot of traction with a rabidly anti-rights Democrat delegate when I explained that their proposed bill created special classes of citizens, and is not egalitarian, one of the principles on which our country was founded. She didn’t like that idea one bit, “since that is not what she’s about”. It made her question her bill. Not that it mattered in the end, it never made it out of committee. But I prevented the debate from being about firearms.

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