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On Moderate “Allies”

Thirdpower speaks of a commenter regularly appearing over at Tom King’s blog:

What he considers a “principled” stance is to throw gun owners he doesn’t associate with under the bus to protect his personal interests for the time being yet can’t seem to understand why we don’t like him.

I’m willing to stand with a hunter who will stand with me any day of the week, but I’m even willing to stand with a hunter who mostly just fights for his sport, as long as he doesn’t actively work against mine. I’d hardly consider that Great Britain was being a good ally to Czechoslovakia when they agreed to let Hitler gobble it up in order to have “Peace in our Time”, and it’s hard to consider a guy like this a real ally too, even a moderate one.

But I do think we need to dispense with the term “Fudd,” and drop the generally adversarial relationship we often promote with the hunting community. We need hunters, for a lot of reasons. I’m a proponent of getting them more on board with the gun rights thing, and it’s hard to do that if they see us insulting them, and denigrating their sport. We won’t get through to all of them, but I don’t see any reason to write off this important demographic in the shooting community. We may not convert this moderate “ally” into someone who sees the light, but there’s no reason not to try.

UPDATE: Pistolero has a different point of view.  I should clarify that I’m not suggesting we need to abide by hunters who just decide to be selfish and actively work against the gun rights of others.  The proper term for someone like that is gun control advocate, and they must be opposed.  My caution here is to not assume that every horse of this persuasion can’t be lead to water.  Many of them can.  That’s why I caution against terms like “Fudd” that some might see as denigrating.  If the shooting community factionalizes, we’re doomed.

6 Responses to “On Moderate “Allies””

  1. Gman says:

    Sebastian,

    You would be surprised how much in sympathy I am with shooters.

    Interestingly enough, this thirdpower guy has thrown flames at me from Day One (with the Fudd routine) and is the perfect exemplar of the “if you don’t toe the line 100% we will not just disagree; we will heap abuse upon you and call you an enemy.”

    This is no way to convince anybody of the righteousness of your position. If someone were trying to win you over, would YOU react favorably to such an approach?

    Unfortunately, because we can not go back to 1977 and play the other fork, we can’t know what would happen if Carter’s folks hadn’t prevailed. But the hue and cry and continued march of bad legal proposals of the last 31 years tells me this strategy has not been wholly successful for gun owners.

    But it sure has been good to raise money from the peanut gallery.

    I don’t really care if thirdpower or Tom King or you or anybody likes me; I sure don’t feel misunderstood. Thirdpower puts a lot of words into my mouth.

    Screeching at each other on blogs is like farting in a hurricane. For every 5 mins they spend on me, they could be writing their Congressman.

  2. thirdpower says:

    AH, poor Gman, don’t like being caught w/ your own words? You’ve admitted you’re willing to accept bans on magazines. You refuse to accept that the anti-gun laws will keep coming and can get passed. And you think you’re safe in your little world while attacking those who are actually helping you.

    If it wasn’t for those “extremist groups” you decry, the AWB would still be in place w/ even more restrictions, CCW would not be the norm, even more lawsuits against dealers and manufacturers would be the order of the day, and yes, your scoped hunting rifle would be under attack as an “intermediate sniper rifle” using “Armor piercing ammunition”.

    So you can make your little ad hominem attacks all you want. I’m not the one willing to sacrifice a large percentage of shooters to protect myself.

  3. Sebastian says:

    Unfortunately, because we can not go back to 1977 and play the other fork, we can’t know what would happen if Carter’s folks hadn’t prevailed. But the hue and cry and continued march of bad legal proposals of the last 31 years tells me this strategy has not been wholly successful for gun owners.

    I’m not convinced it’s not a useful exercise to ponder what might have been. I don’t think you really even have to ponder. We have laboratories of democracy that have taken the gun control way, and the result hasn’t been good for shooters, hunters included. We just witnessed severe hunting restrictions in California, and we’ve seen them in New Jersey too, where a 50 caliber sniper rifle ban very nearly outlawed most muzzle loading firearms, but was defeated by ANJRPC and the NRA.

    So what would NRA have done if Harlan Carter’s people not prevailed in 77?

  4. Linoge says:

    Despite me never having been hunting in my entire life, I have absolutely nothing against hunters, and have no problems with people doing it. Furthermore, hunters can, indeed, be wonderful allies in the realm of firearm rights, self-defense, and all the rest of that good and shiny stuff.

    However, when hunters are supporting, or at least have no problems with, magazine capacities restrictions, and then turn around and dismiss as “goofy” a law in NY state that bears a striking resemblance to another law in CA that was passed… Well, that is just stupid from two different directions (appeasement, and historical precedent), and both are damaging to the overall cause of firearm rights.

    I am no Sith (“If you are not with me, you are my enemy.”), but neither am I blind – if a person is assisting hoplophobic anti-rights organizations in further limiting, restricting, and regulating my firearms and associated rights… well, that says something about them.

  5. I would think the “fudd” label applies primarily to those who have shown they cannot or will not be led to the gun rights water…which, apparently, would include people such as this Gman character who would accept magazine restrictions and such in order to “preserve the larger right.” Never mind the fact that they’ll come back for MORE of that “larger right” later. I understand what you’re getting at, but still I don’t think the term “Fudd” is entirely unwarranted — because the shooting community is already split, and why is that? Which side is fighting for everyone’s right to keep and bear arms for any and all purposes, and which side is willing to throw certain contingents of gun owners under the bus for a temporary “preservation of the larger right”?

  6. Sebastian says:

    but still I don’t think the term “Fudd” is entirely unwarranted — because the shooting community is already split, and why is that? Which side is fighting for everyone’s right to keep and bear arms for any and all purposes, and which side is willing to throw certain contingents of gun owners under the bus for a temporary “preservation of the larger right”?

    To the extent that it is split, it’s a weakness for us. It’s a wound we should try to heal, since the infection (AHSA and their ilk) is already setting in. Like I said, some people we’re never going to convince, but I do think we have to try, and making it “us” vs. “them” is just going to open the wound farther.

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