The Washington Post ran a column Tuesday arguing Second Amendment supporters are engaging in bullying when they correct gun-control advocates’ mistakes.
Military Veteran news site Task & Purpose senior editor Adam Weinstein claimed gun owners are wrong to correct others on what the “AR” in AR-15 stands for or calling out reporters when they refer to a semi-automatic rifle as a machine gun.
“Gunsplaining, though, is always done in bad faith. Like mansplaining, it’s less about adding to the discourse than smothering it — with self-appointed authority, and often the thinnest of connection to any real fact,” Weinstein wrote.
It remains unclear how pointing out the media and various lawmakers’ repeated errors has “the thinnest of connection to any real fact,” as Weinstein argues, but that doesn’t stop him from cherry picking one specific instance during the disastrous CNN gun-control town hall last month.
“How could she possibly believe the Founding Fathers, who ratified the Second Amendment in 1791, anticipated legal AR-15s?” He asked.
“At the time,” Dana Loesch replied [during the townhall], “there were fully automatic weapons that were available — the Belton gun and Puckle gun.”
Weinstein doesn’t seem to recognize the irony of how he’s using one or two specific potential misstatements by pro-gun right advocates to delegitimize all arguments against more regulation, a tactic his whole column is devoted to rejecting, regardless of the accuracy of Loesch’s statement (it’s far from settled).
Despite the fact anti-2A politicians and journalists likely make far more errors than their counterparts, Weinstein insists it’s actually “the pro gun side” that:
“…needs to give a lot more — not just because it’s been disingenuously gunsplaining to shut down discussions and close minds for years — but because the onus should be on those citizens who own the weapons technology, and purport to understand it, to share that understanding with the skeptical and less-informed,” he wrote.
Indeed, most 2A advocates probably accept the responsibility to educate others on the ins and outs of various firearms. At a certain point, however, one must understand the frustration of correcting newscasters repeatedly for spreading wrong information — like the myth fully automatic weapons are easy available for purchase.
It is hard to imagine Weinstein truly wants a “conversation” about gun rights in this country, for all his talk against “gunsplaining,” if he objects to gun owners’ frustration with the abundance of ridiculous claims in the media — such as the idea handguns are useless against an individual with a rifle because of the differences in firing speed between the two.
Perhaps Weinstein should also remember it is his side who wants to take something from the other. Maybe he should consider educating his side instead, if he finds it aggravating his opponents are winning arguments because of technicalities
Weinstein could always refer his fellow gun-control advocates to the National Rifle Association — the organization has an abundance of safety classes and literature — if he finds that task too daunting.