Associated Press Makes “assault weapon” Change To AP Style Book

The FAB Defense GL Core-M looks great on any AR. IMG FAB Defense

BELLEVUE, WA – -( After years of incorporating the terms “assault rifle” and “assault weapons” into news reports involving firearms, especially when used in crimes, journalists are now advised by the Associated Press to avoid the “highly politicized terms,” and the Second Amendment Foundation says it’s a “smart gun change.”

“It’s about time the media realized the terms ‘assault rifle’ and ‘assault weapon’ are inflammatory and meaningless,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb.

“Those terms have become part of the gun prohibition lobby’s lexicon, and unfortunately, journalists across the country have been all-too-willing to adopt their vocabulary and repeatedly use it in their reports.

“I’m glad to see the AP Stylebook now recognizes that these firearms only fire one round each time a trigger is pulled,” he continued, “and really function no differently than any other semi-auto rifle, pistol or shotgun, all of which have been in common use in this country for more than a century.”

According to an AP Style Tip, “The preferred term for a rifle that fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, and automatically reloads for a subsequent shot, is a semi-automatic rifle. An automatic rifle continuously fires rounds if the trigger is depressed and until its ammunition is exhausted.

“Avoid assault rifle and assault weapon,” the AP adds, “which are highly politicized terms that generally refer to AR- or AK-style rifles designed for the civilian market, but convey little meaning about the actual functions of the weapon.”

As noted by Gottlieb, “The gun prohibition lobby has always used ‘assault rifle’ or ‘assault weapon’ to confuse and frighten the public and make people think it’s a fully automatic ‘weapon of war.’ Now we’ll have to see how intellectually honest journalists will be in adopting this correct terminology, rather than continuing to use these deliberately misleading references.

“This laudable effort by the Associated Press may help restore the level of trust the public should have in the media,” he observed. “It will be interesting to see if the media now challenges politicians and anti-gun lobbyists whenever they use such terms, especially since ‘AR’ never referred to ‘assault rifle’ but to Armalite Rifle, and the gun control crowd has always known it.”

The Second Amendment Foundation ( is the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 750,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control.

Second Amendment Foundation

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Um…yea…if the AP is advising to use the term Semi-Automatic it isn’t a good thing. It’s because they’ve finally learned enough to know what they really want to ban is ALL semi-automatic weapons and not just so called, “assault weapons.”


If the AP has decided that an inflammatory and triggering (snicker) term like “assault weapon” should not be used it stands to reason that they have found an even better term to form soft minds to their goals. One might wonder if it will need a special occasion to be rolled out or if it will be issued to all media with a particular start date.


Once upon a time there was this thing called journalism. It no longer exists, but it’s an interesting concept. It’s difficult to believe now, but it was actually taught in some colleges and universities and occasionally encouraged.


Actually… Those of us who were in the military, were sent to various places not of our choosing .
To prevent some bad actor from assaulting us and taking our life tools for self defense were issued be they M16’s M1 carbines or any other type of weapon .
Therefore I suggest they are all self defense weapons ! That is what we should be calling them !

Watch um

How about anti-assault weapon, it is to prevent you from being assaulted.
But you and I know along with good people that love our Constitution these pig headed liberals ain’t going to change


Any weapon can be an “assault” weapon if it is used to assault someone. That is why if I kick someone in the face with my size 15 shoe, I could be charged with “assault” for the act if I was not responding to an attack on my person. I would be an assault weapon for all intents being 6’4″ tall and weighing 245-250 pounds with 2 second degree black belts in two different forms or martial arts. And then there is the venerable assault pen which if used properly (or should I say improperly since a pen is a… Read more »

Watch um

Can a hat pin work as well as a knitting needle


good old #2 pencil works fine


An old fashion Ice Pick is deadly .


The next thing they need to figure out is, the term “gun crime” is ridiculous. It should be referred to as “violent crime”. Personally, if I was going to be murdered, I’d rather be shot than stabbed or bludgeoned. It would be quicker and less painful. Besides, if a criminal couldn’t get a gun, he would just use something else.


Not necessarily quicker. Bullets tend to make rather small, though deep, holes. Knives sever everything, leaving big holes and massive bleeding. Have been told (have not personally verified) that 90% of GSW victims transported to hospital alive, survive. Knifing victims experience the exact opposite with 90% of those transported by EMS die. Doubt statistics can be applied at level of all victims – but point is that knives are every bit as deadly as bullets. I’d rather not be assaulted in any manner, but if I am I want maximum ability to survive – even if my survival comes at… Read more »

Idaho Bob

The AP and the left could care less if they are being divisive by using “highly politicized terms”. All this means is that the left has come up with a new end game that will continue the assault on our 2nd Amendment. Don’t be fooled by fools.


The media also is known to include A High Powered Weapon was used. Along with a military style weapon.


It’s not just the media. The Sheriff in Highland Park, Illinois referred to the shooters AR15 as a “high powered rifle” even though it shoots a .223 round. If it is so “high powered”, why do several states prohibit hunting with it because it’s not powerful enough? I guess they want it both ways.


Instead of being a called a “high powered rifle” it should be called a rifle designed to wound. LOL! Now if it was an AR 10 or an FN FAL…or a NEMO Omen…

Dogma Factor

This is not about using the correct verbiage, this is about winding the scope of the gun grabbers focus. Not just to ban Assault Rifle, but to ban all Simi-Automatic firearms. It’s still the same old all guns are bad, but these are the most evil weapons of war that sensible laws should remove from society because nobody needs Simi-Automatic weapons for hunting. The liberals are always using semantics as a weapon to a means.


Orwell would disagree. “Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed will be expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. Already, in the Eleventh Edition, we’re not far from that point. But the process will still be continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words, and the… Read more »


Have recently heard “no one needs a repeating firearm.” Guess magazine fed bolt action rifles are on the table along with lever arms, revolvers, pump or multibarrel shotguns, and of course semi-autos. Who’d a thought they would eventually try to ban everything? Oh yeah – all of us!

FAWB, FJB, FAFT, etc. etc.


The term “assault rifle” has been used so much by idiots that its lost its fear factor . They over used it like the boy who cried wolf . ” assault rifle ” nolonger creates mass hysteria among liberals so its time to move on with a new line of BS .

Watch um

How about assault peter,, now that will inflict 9 months of pain


Were it not for hyperbole and inflammatory language the left would not be able to make an argument.

Tim L

you forgot lies and other fabrications…


“Ding, ding, ding”, we have a winner!


More reason to resist using ANY of the lefty lexicons they use as hooks, virtue signals, etc. They’ve changed the language so much in the past 50 years that today up means down and down means up. I remember sneaking up out of bed to watch Jack Paar and later as a teen Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show, (it used to be hilarious), although I did not like the humor in all the “politically correct” bits. Granted they thought they were making fun of the twisting of the language, but in reality they were introducing the leftards twisted thinking… Read more »


By dropping assault rifle and using semiautomatic rifle, what would seem more likely is that media reports will drive home the point that some psychotic used a semiautomatic rifle or handgun to commit a crime. Thus semiautomatic = target to ban, just as weapons of war and assault rifle are now. May not be a step in the right direction at all. Hide your 10/22’s.

Rob J

Pedantics when discussing firearms is EXTREMELY important. One can not have logical and reasonable discourse about firearms if the person they are conversing with is comparing apples to oranges. This is one of the two most important things to remember when discussing firearms with antis, the first being to always remain calm and non-insulting. The furniture (cosmetics) of a firearm has absolutely no effect on the ballistic capabilities of said firearm except barrel length. This simple statement has helped the eyes of many antis I have talked with. Though they still do not budge, this exposes their arguments as… Read more »


Your points are undebatable and is the absolute correct way to discuss anything with a leftard. You’ll never get a lefty to agree, you’re right, but by following your advice, your demeanor and the logic you use during the exchange has profound impact on the fence sitter and you never know for sure, but your advice just might be the fertile seed of change that gets planted into the leftards brain that down the road bears fruit.

Henry Bowman

If we keep racking up 2A victories, the Overton Window WILL shift, and outfits like AP will be forced to drop inflammatory terms like ‘gun violence’. So losing the ‘AW’ verbiage is, to steal a line from the other side, “a good start”!

My Gun is Lazy Not Violent Png.png

Your AR15 might be suffering from “Low-T”. Try shoving one “Ageless Male” capsule down the barrel each day and it will likely perk right up.


Amazed they are dropping the assault rifle term. They love “assault” as it helps them drive fear and confuse the public.


Arizona,just like their “gun violence” BS,..”assault rifle” among other socialist created terms is only used to demonize firearms for very gullible stupid people.


Everyone knows that Assault rifles are all fully semi-automatic and capable of firing 10000 rounds per millisecond.


Like many Americans, you’re having trouble with the difference between a nanosecond and a milisecond. Just remember, as Admiral Grace Hopper often demonstrated, a nanosecond is about the length of a 30 caliber assault clip.

Sam in New Hampshire

Ah, memories. I miss COBOL


Only if they have the .30 caliber 30 magazine clip.