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Zumbo II?

A lot of people on forums have been pointing out this video by Joaquin Jackson:

Jackson released a statement through NRA about this video here, where he says:

In the interview, when asked about my views of “assault weapons,” I was talking about true assault weapons – fully automatic firearms. I was not speaking, in any way, about semiautomatic rifles. While the media may not understand this critical distinction, I take it very seriously. But, as a result, I understand how some people may mistakenly take my comments to mean that I support a ban on civilian ownership of semiautomatic firearms. Nothing could be further from the truth. And, unfortunately, the interview was cut short before I could fully explain my thoughts and beliefs.

But that comment should never be mistaken as support for the outright banning of any ammunition magazines. In fact, such bans have been pursued over the years by state legislatures and the United States Congress and these magazine bans have always proven to be abject failures.

I can accept that people misspeak at times, but that’s one hell of a misspeak! Folks have been calling for Jackson to be fired, or for the NRA to do something about him, but they can’t. Jackson is a board member. He serves on the board because NRA’s voting members have elected him to it. All we can really do is not elect him to another term when his term is up.

Others have called for the Zumboing of Jackson, which I don’t think makes sense. Jackson is not an outdoor columnist, or television personality. He has no sponsors. Plus, Jackson isn’t quite the hunting icon that Jim Zumbo is. Zumbo’s statements were dangerous precisely because of the audience he reached; an audience the anti-gun people have been trying to woo and pretend to speak for. Jackson represents law enforcement, and law enforcement have never been consistent RKBA allies.

I’m inclined not to get too worked up over this incident, and to consider both Jackson’s statement here, and his clarification when he’s up for the board again. Don’t get me wrong, I think what he said on Texas Monthly was pretty bad, but so have some of the accusations flying around about Jackson being anti-gun, or being a liberal gun controller. Let’s keep what he said in mind when elections come around, but let’s not get unhinged over this.

5 Responses to “Zumbo II?”

  1. Alcibiades says:

    That magazine capacity talk was the confusing part. The topics were too intermingled to sort out properly.

  2. Tom says:

    I didn’t think it was confusing. He flat out stated that magazines with a capacity of more than five should be banned. I listened to it twice.
    Also, (if he was only talking about full-auto firearms) his stance is stricter than the NFA, which does allow private ownership. He’s not getting my vote again.

  3. Sebastian says:

    I’m with Tom. I don’t really think it was confusing. He said magazines should be limited to five for civilians. Maybe he wasn’t really aware of what he was saying; it’s a possibility. But someone on the board needs to be a lot more careful than that.

    I’m willing to forgive Jackson, as I have with Zumbo, but he’d be hard pressed to get my vote for the board again.

  4. Matt says:

    Why can’t NRA board members get a media term glossary overview before they do stuff like this?

    Sorry, Sebastian, I was pissed when I watched this. It is a big deal. He may have meant Class 3 “assault weapons” but the media does not make or chooses to ignore the distinction.

    I saw where the commentator was leading him with the assault weapons and magazine capacity stuff. He pressed the point and Jackson got confused or didn’t realize he was playing into the interviewer’s hands.

    Anyone who is representing the NRA as a whole should get a course in media perception. Whenever you hear the term “assault weapon” coming out of the mouth of anyone in the media, they are not thinking about machine guns. They are thinking about guns that look like machine guns. The distinction between a full-auto and the semi-auto lookalike is hairsplitting that will be glossed over in any interview.

    As a result, whenever a media person says “assault weapon”, the interviewer better immediately ask for clarification so this type of semantic confusion doesn’t occur. At a minimum, it will put the media on the defensive and perhaps reveal their bias or get them to admit they are discussing semi-autos and not full-autos.

    The media doesn’t get the magazine capacity thing for the same reason. They associate “assault weapons” with death and don’t think they can be hunted with (they can). Magazine limits in hunting are a result of legislation, not technical. Why does a hunter need to fire more than one or two shots? So the low capacity limits on hunting rifles and the inevitable confusion on capacity limits in “assault weapons” on a basis on need.

    If you’re an NRA board member, you should not be speaking with the media to give a pro-gun message unless a) You’re prepared to defend all types of firearms and shooters and b) You understand the distinction between your natural understanding of “assault weapon” (select fire) versus the media/public perception of “assault weapon” (anything that looks military, semi or full auto). Otherwise, you fall right into the trap Jackson did here.

    His follow-up statements are laudable but they never get broadcast to the people that saw the interview. All they see, and especially the anti-gun people see, is an NRA board member supporting magazine capacity limits and no “assault weapons” in the hands of civilians. And that clip is what they’ll be running in front of legislatures and councils to push their agenda using the words of the “gun lobby” itself.

    We need people that will force the media to clarify and expose their biases with regard to firearms. To get the confusion on their perception into the public eye. Until then, stuff like this can only hurt us no matter how well intentioned.

  5. Sailorcurt says:

    Mentioning the obvious (again).

    What, specifically, does the Second Amendment Guarantee of the Natural Right to Keep and Bear Arms have to do with hunting? What, specifically, limits the Right to Keep and Bear Arms to firearms specifically designed for hunting. What, specifically, does the Second Amendment have to do with someone’s perception of the proper number of rounds that a hunter “needs” in his rifle?

    Upon watching the video, I think he was lying in his “clarification”. He acknowledged the contentious nature of the “assault weapon” issue before declaring that only our overlords should have them. He then flat out said that “civilian” weapons (cops are civilians too by the by) should be limited to a capacity of 5 rounds. He, furthermore, offered the opinion that hunters only “should need” single shot rifles but allowed that “five shots should be plenty.”

    You’ll forgive me if I reserve the right to determine my own “needs” thank you very much.

    There was nothing ambiguous about his statements.

    But…even giving him the benefit of the doubt and buying into his excuse that he was talking about machine guns and wasn’t advocating magazine capacity limits…what justification is there for his position?

    He’s still advocating bans, he’s still advocating the “just like us, only better” and “the only ones” concepts. He is still undermining the intent and purpose of the Second Amendment which was to ensure that the whole body of the people being trained and equipped to act as a militia in times of need.

    His position, undeniably, is that certain classes of personal firearms (fully automatic or select fire) should be banned from the general population. That position, even assuming (which I don’t) that his denials are genuine, is unacceptable for a board member of the primary gun rights organization in this nation.

    I could even forgive if he simply opined that the current NFA regulations should remain in place…he didn’t even do that. He called for a BAN. He said that assault weapons should not be available to “civilians” unless “you kept that magazine capacity down to five rounds”. Protestations notwithstanding, his position is unacceptable.

    He most definitely should never be elected to the NRA board again.

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