By Michael W. Howell
Staff writer and Senior Editor at Fighting the Tyranny
With every mass shooting that happens in America, one thing is a guarantee – gun control talks. The airwaves fill with Operation Mockingbird-style disinformation and the collectivists seem to find the most ill-informed individuals on the planet to represent the latest emotional argument surrounding firearms. As the networks pound out the non-stop round the clock coverage on the latest news of the events each segment can be seen with an “expert” on to talk about gun violence. To listen to these experts talk about firearms is equivalent to hearing a lecture on basketweaving from me. However, even I think I could get more basketweaving terms correct in my foolishness than these “experts” can get correct about firearms. When matters such as mass shootings take place it is important to look at all aspects and events leading up to the tragedy. Instead, we see a path straight to blaming the firearm and not what factors played a role in the carrying out of the shooting.
There is so much disinformation being propagated concerning how firearms work, the basic right to firearm ownership, and the terms used to describe the firearms. One such silly term that always gets plastered on every news outlet after a mass shooting is the term “assault rifle”. Commonly associated with the AR-15 rifle the term assault weapon is what gun grabbers rely heavily on when trying to sway public opinion. Having owned an AR-15, I must admit that mine must be broken. It has never assaulted anyone or anything.
One of the misconceptions immediately found when discussing the AR-15 is found in the name itself. I went on social media soon after the Parkland school shooting and the typical rhetoric was in full force. In one thread alone, I asked if any of the people who were calling for the banning of AR-15’s knew what the AR stood for. Quickly I found what I was up against. It wasn’t knowledge I was debating against but an agenda. The comments were coming back with the two main “gun grabbers” in the thread each giving wrong answers. One said it stood for “assault rifle” and the other stated it stood for “automatic rifle”. You can imagine their surprise when I stated both were wrong.
So, let’s talk about the one firearm that seems to be at the heart of any gun control talk after the latest mass shooting and that is the AR-15. The facts surrounding the AR-15 has been so grossly exaggerated that the layman today can’t decipher the truths among the myriad of lies surrounding the firearm. Let’s look at the AR-15 in an honest light and address some of these fallacies.
The history of the AR-15 goes back to the late 1950’s when the gun manufacturer, ArmaLite, first produced the firearm. Contrary to the emotional argument, that is where the firearm gets its name, AR-15. The AR stands for the name of the manufacturer, not the “assault rifle” fear-mongering tactic that we see being used to perpetuate their objectives. I will address the term “assault rifle” shortly.
The AR-15-style rifles may look like military rifles, such as the M-16 or the M-4, but they, in fact, function much like other semi-automatic civilian sporting firearms, firing only one round with each pull of the trigger. The AR-15-style rifles are no more powerful than other hunting rifles of the same caliber and in most cases are chambered in calibers less powerful than common big-game hunting cartridges like the 30-06 Springfield and .300 Win. Mag. Chamberings include .22, .223 (5.56 x 45mm), 6.8 SPC, .308, .450 Bushmaster and about a dozen others. Upper receivers for pistol calibers such as 9 mm, .40, and .45 are available. There are even .410 shotgun versions.
So, what is all this hyperactive, knee-jerking talk about assault rifles and just how easy it is to legally acquire one? First off, a military-style assault weapon is one that can be easily changed, by a flick of a selector switch, to fire semi-automatically, fully-automatic or a three round burst. The popular Sportsman Rifle AR platform that is available to civilians today does not meet the criteria needed to be classified as an assault weapon or what the military personnel is issued and use.
The talking heads are all coming out of the woodwork in showing just how uneducated they are when it comes to firearms, more specifically, the AR platform. When compared to other semi-automatic rifles the AR’s reputation is grossly exaggerated to fit the biased argument. What makes the AR platform stand out is nothing more than cosmetics and appearance rather than any operation or function of the firearm itself.
The Sportsman Rifle is considered one of the most sought-after long rifles for hunting, as well self-defense purposes, for its ease of use and versatility. To a collector, the appeal is to have many custom models tailored to specific design preferences and shooting needs. None of the “custom” models I am referring to changes one iota in the functioning of the rifle. It is the accessories that the gun grabbers zero in on. In fact, many of the custom choices, such as an addition of a scope or the ability to distribute weight with a top carrying handle, can make firearms safer to both shoot and carry.
These are custom changes that can be picked up in “kits” and is available for varying calibers ranging from .22 caliber to the .225/.556 caliber. While I prefer a manual bolt action .308, the caliber is available in the AR platform as well. Just a preference and not an endorsement as I find the .308 in the AR platform extremely fun to shoot but for my taste and accuracy, I seem better with a bolt action.
The kits that available are nothing more than what the word implies. Another way of looking at it would be to think of a body kit for a car. While the new fender flares and hood scoop make the Honda look meaner, it does nothing to the operation of the car. The plastic pieces, such as the pistol grip, magazine, and the collapsible stock of the firearm are what give the AR platform its high sales and large appeal to consumers. Because of the light weight of the AR based on the plastic lighter material, and its ability to be preferred choice over a wide range of shooters ranging from genders to ages, the Sportsmans Rifle remains top seller year after year. It is effective for hunting from varmints to big game.
Now I want to address another issue and that is the agenda in the mainstream media. More specifically the outright lies pertaining to the narrative being shoved down our throats. I purposely and deliberately titled this article what I did to point out what we see after every mass shooting. The attack on the object and our rights come under attack but never the causes leading up to what happened. Shooting after shooting we find that no new gun law would have prevented the shooting. Especially eliminating plastic pieces from the gun. Most of the time we find that law enforcement knew the individual as well as the FBI. What we need is an honest debate on the subject from all sides.
This is where I would like to extend a challenge to David Hogg and debate him in an open forum with an honest agenda using only facts and law. He recently stated that he “..had debate and journalism skills” and wanted to use them. I do, too, and would love to use mine in an open forum debate. You pick the debate style and venue. It takes more than a foul mouth and a narrow agenda to make sense of your gun control ideology, and I take you up on your “skills”. You made yourself a public figure, as I have, too, so let’s debate this with truths and logic.
As state’s and communities start to legislate new laws, now is the time we need to talk this topic all the way through to conclusion. No more fear mongering based lies to promote senseless ideologies but straight talk about firearms and the right to them. It is not your feelings I am concerned with but my family’s safety. When criminals obey laws we can discuss my “needs”. If laws are all you believe we need then just make murder illegal. Oh wait, it already is.
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Michael Howell’s book Anatomy of the Global Agenda