On The Fuddies

Rustmeister and Peter comment on the term “fudd.”  It’s hard to slur just one subset of a group with a term that’s really insulting to the whole group.  There will always be hunters who don’t get it.  Anyone who’s been around shooters enough knows there are some that also don’t get it.  But there are plenty that do, and for those that do, I think we ought to have the courtesy of not smearing the whole group.

44 thoughts on “On The Fuddies”

  1. When I use the term “Fudd” (which isn’t all that often, really), I’m not referring to hunters in general. Hell–I used to hunt (without a lot of success) before I became wheelchair-bound. Personally, I only apply the “Fudd” pejorative to those sport shooters (hunters, skeet shooters, etc.) who will cheerfully throw the self-defense (or maybe “tactical” is a better term) shooters under the bus, in the belief that doing so helps keep their oh-so-respectable pretty guns safe.

    Maybe that’s a more restrictive definition of the term than is correct, but it’s my definition.

  2. +1 on Kurt. I’ve never taken “Fudd” to mean anything but those with the shitty ‘we’re the only ones that count’ attitude.

  3. Thirded. Cannot say as though I have ever used the term, but that is about the definition my brain has come up with every time it has seen “Fudd”.

  4. Sorry, gonna pile on here. When I use the term “Quisling”, I’m not describing the whole group, neither am I when I use the term Fudd. Fudds are hunters who only care about their Bambi zappers and not the Second Amendment.

    I’ve got offers to go deer and hog hunting over the next two months. I plan on taking those offers. I’ll be hunting with the 6.8SPC AR. The guys I’ll be going with are avid hunters, this will be the first time I’ve gone hunting since I was a teenager. THEY are not Fudds, they are hunters – there’s a big difference.

    And sorry, but anyone who’ll throw my rights under the bus to save parts of theirs gets no quarter from me. “Playing Nice Together” doesn’t work with people like that.

  5. How many times have you heard this: “There are black people, and then there are n****ers.” Doesn’t make blacks resent the term any less. That’s how I view the word Fudd. At some point, someone smart is going to drag that term out to drive a wedge into the division within the shooting community. We should be happy that AHSA isn’t all that smart.

  6. Sebastian, there already IS a wedge in the shooting community, and it’s being wielded by those who wish to feed us to the wolves while they try to escape. It is the reason the AHSA exists.

    Those who oppose our rights for whatever reason will continue to earn my disdain. I’m not the one you need to be lecturing on proper “terminology”. We’re not the ones trying to sell out hunters’ rights or saying bolt-action rifles should be banned so we can keep our AR’s. Equating the term to a racial slur is a little over the top in my opinion. When I talk of Fudds, I’m talking of behavior, not race and behavior IS something you can control.

  7. How many times have you heard this: “There are black people, and then there are n****ers.”

    Like Robb, I find that analogy to be a bit weak. Hardcore gun advocates have never organized “Fudd lynching parties,” never gone on night rides in the “Fudd communities, etc.” There is just no credible way to equate the hateful baggage of “the N-word” to “Fudd.”

    It particularly surprises me to see you make that analogy, Sebastian–wasn’t it you who expressed doubt about characterizing anti-gun zealotry as bigotry?

    As much as I believe the fight for the second amendment is a civil rights struggle, that has parallels to other civil rights struggles in our nation’s history, I’ve always had a hard time getting over the fact that being a gun owner is a choice, whereas no one chooses to be Black, Hispanic, Native American, and, at least in my opinion, gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered. In that sense, barring someone from a community because of his color just can’t, in my opinion, rank up there with barring someone from a community because he chooses to be a gun owner. I do agree that the latter is a constitutionally protected right, but I can choose not to be a gun owner. Someone can’t choose not to be black.

    Also, speaking of pejoratives used by one part of the shooting community against another (actually, within the gun rights advocacy community, which, as the whole “Fudd” controversy illustrates, is a narrower group than shooters), you were pretty tepid about criticizing use of the term “SNBI!” (add more exclamation points if you wish–you know who you are).

  8. Well, anyone who wants to know how I feel about Fudds can just click on over to my blog. I have to disagree with Sebastain on this one. I for one have never seen the term Fudd ever used as a general term for all hunters. If that was the case, I would be a Fudd as well.

    I just can’t get with the program of making nice with a group(Fudd’s & western Democrats) who hold my rights in disdain and tell me that the government would never take away my guns(unless I own a miltary style “assault weapon” or a handgun or a bb gun or ……).

  9. Sebastian, you are spot-on with your analogy.

    Yes, if you take it and carry it out a bit (behavior vs race, lynching, etc) it’s a bit silly, but on its face, it is accurate.

    All hunters may not be Fudds, but all Fudds are hunters. When you are using that term, how is a non-Fudd to know whether they are in that group or not?

    And if you tell them they’re not, why should they believe you? You’re surely talking about people they know.

    We all know there are anti-gun hunters out there. They see their own weapons as tools, but not yours (or many of mine). They need to be called out, identified and hopefully enlightened.

    But sweeping generalizations aren’t going to cause this problem to become any clearer.

  10. Sorry Rust, but he’s not spot on. In fact, Sebastian might as well come out and claim “Fudd” is “racially loaded”. Some of you are falling into the PC-Trap of segregating a term from its intent and then assigning what YOU think the word means to it. I define Fudd as a hunter who is more than willing to allow guns they feel to be inappropriate to be banned. When I speak of the Fudds, that is who I’m talking about. You now know this to be a fact, so if you continue to claim that I am “brushing a wide swath of people with the same brush” you are being dishonest since you KNOW my definition.

    When you are using that term, how is a non-Fudd to know whether they are in that group or not?

    Easy. Do they personally feel the need to ban guns they don’t feel appropriate?

    Now, do other people use Fudd in other ways? Sure. Language is like that. But to claim all people use Fudd to insult all hunters is doing the exact same thing you are claiming to be against.

  11. the PC-Trap of segregating a term from its intent and then assigning what YOU think the word means to it.

    should read

    the PC-Trap of segregating a term from the speaker’s intent and then assigning what YOU think the word means to it.

  12. OK, let’s accept the proposition for the moment (there is some merit to it, as the root (the cartoon character) can apply to all hunters).

    We now have a very powerful pejorative word to use for these people. What word or phrase do you suggest we use instead?

    You really need a new and good one, seeing as how the current word is already well established and you need to displace it to achieve your goal.

  13. Douche or Douchebag? Wait….that covers TOO many possible people. Can’t use that, we might offend someone.

  14. I think it is fair to say that such a thing as a “fudd” does exist. You can define it somewhere along the lines of “someone who hunts but supports gun control”. However, that’s just my definition. Other people may define a “fudd” as “someone who hunts but does not actively champion 2A rights”. Or “someone who hunts but does not like black rifles”. Or even “someone who only hunts with a wood stock rifle”. In fact, you could come up with so many different definitions that I’d argue there is no standard understanding of what a “fudd” is. People outside the “gun nut” circle may not even be familiar with the pejorative use of the term.

    That means an author and a reader may well have different understandings of the term. All that tells me is that when you are addressing people who may not understand what you mean, or may have a different definition, you should, at the very least, define the term as you use it.

    The term was designed to be an insult, and if that is your intention, fine. However, if you do not intend to insult hunters, or if you simply intend to describe the group of people who enjoy Second Amendment rights without supporting them, then I would suggest candor is a better option. You can convey the same idea without using a term that may be misunderstood.

    I don’t mean to admonish those who choose to use the term. I personally think that it is in our (us being “gun nuts”) best interests to convince hunters to join us. Insulting them doesn’t accomplish anything.

  15. Robb, it’s not about me. It’s not about you. It’s about the people you are talking about.

    Just because you know what you mean, it doesn’t mean Your Average Hunter knows.

    That’s what I’m getting at. I know you don’t mean “all hunters”, but do the hunters know that?

  16. I understand Robb’s point that it doesn’t seem logical to assign intent to his words other than what he himself means. However, that’s what people do. You have to gauge your wish to use that term against the ramifications of not being understood by your audience. It isn’t about being PC, it is about being effective.

  17. I’m sorry, but I’m not buying it.

    People like Bill Schneider are being deliberately obtuse. The term has always been used to mean that subset of hunters who are basically opposed to 2nd Amendment rights except certain(expensive) hunting rifles & shotguns.

    Schneider & John Rosenthal are exemplars.

    These types loathe other gun owners are are going out of their way to create a wedge in the shooting community between hunter and other gun owners. When we call them out on it, they whine and say we are attacking hunters.

    There is no way to win if we kow-tow to them and let them define the words we use. It’s going to get uglier in the next few months and years and we aren’t going to see this through by playing nice-nice with our enemies.

  18. However, that’s what people do.

    People also push to ban firearms because of misunderstanding. I guess we should just give in and let them since, well, that’s what people do.

    Rust, those hunters need to read more. You can’t get enough information from a single comment or blog post. What your describing is the same phenomenon where someone comes in here, reads one post by Sebastian, and automatically accuses him of being a right-wing, Republican shill. Context is critical, and by ignoring past behaviors and actions, you end up with a populace who votes for “Hope and Change” because he looks good on the TeeWee.

    Now, to Greg’s point (and not just the one on the top of his noggin), there can be arguments on the effectiveness of using pejoratives. In my view, the words I have for those who sell us out are generally much worse than Fudd (cowardly-ass-reaming-monkey-fuckers come to mind).

    I’ll play nice when the playing field is level and the rules of play are agreed upon. But the Fudds, or if you prefer “Hunters who don’t mind banning weapons they don’t use”, are part of the problem and treating them with kid gloves only assures we get our asses kicked when they use bare knuckles.

  19. People also push to ban firearms because of misunderstanding. I guess we should just give in and let them since, well, that’s what people do.

    Robb, that’s pure misdirection. I never said that we should ease up on anti-gun hunters. When I said “that’s what people do”, it was ONLY a statement about how people (especially uninformed ones) typically act. It is not within your power to change that no matter how much you wish it.

    there can be arguments on the effectiveness of using pejoratives

    Indeed. I in this case, they are effective at getting the inhabitants of an echo-box nodding their heads. I’m talking primarily about those times (?) when you or I are not preaching to the choir.

  20. LOOK OVER THERE!!!!!
    *steals your lunch*

    That’s misdirection, bub ;)

    Actually, you understood my point exactly – we don’t let up – so it’s not so much misdirection, but simply pointing out the obvious using analogies.

    And yes, you can change the way people think and act, it’s just not easy.

  21. I think we’re having a misunderstanding here. I’ve encountered so-called “Fudds” in person. Several, in fact. I would argue they aren’t so much against gun rights as they apply a “needs test” to the ownership of non-sporting guns. They aren’t actively, for the most part, supporting a ban on certain guns. But they are passively supporting it by not defending them under the cover of “need”.

    The most common argument is “Why do you need more than 5 rounds when 1 or 2 at most will do?”. They don’t see uses beyond the deer and turkey hunt.

    They don’t understand the “need” because they do get the fact these non-traditional rifles are underpowered for game hunting and are prohibited from doing so under many state hunting regulations.

    So the reaction on their part is natural. The state says you can’t use it so why do you “need” it?

    The only way to reach them is to make them understand that with us out of the way, their “high powered sniper rifles” are next. You can’t argue ammo taxes or sky-high ammo prices to someone who fires maybe 20-30 rounds a year at most. Far less if the gun is already sighted in. To them, a $50-$100 box of ammo is the price of hunting. They’ll pay it. They already do in many cases at $25-$35 per box. They can rationalize it that way.

    But they do understand how they will wind up in the crosshairs. Say they really ban EBRs. And over a decade or so effectively confiscate or force them underground and out of sight and out of use by restrictions, ammo taxes, registration, etc. Same happens to handguns. Hunting rifles remaining the dominant sporting rifle and the only “accepted” firearm (along with two shot shotguns) for civilian use.

    Then some criminal pops a cop through the armor with a bolt-action hunting gun. Doesn’t take rocket science to see where that will lead if only a few such incidents occur. Especially if these guns are found on the street more frequently since that is all criminals can steal.

    Then the “Fudds” usually get it. I had a co-worker whom I’ve sparred on this issue with have a change of heart and bought an AR after a year of admonishing me to defend my “need” of such a gun. He got the “sniper rifle” analogy in that the only difference between a hunting rifle and a sniper rifle is the target.

    “Fudds” need to be educated. We need to demonstrate attempts publicly to do so. Only then, if the persist in knowingly throwing us under the bus, do we treat them as persona non grata and as honorary members of the Brady Campaign. Open season on “Elmers” and all that.

    Just my thoughts on the subject.

  22. Kurt:

    You’ll notice that was the first and only time I’ve used the term SNBI on this site if you search for the term. I’m not a fan of pejoratives. I should also note that I’m not defending hunters who advocate for gun control, or who don’t see a reason why gun rights are important for the future of hunting. But I’m hesitant to embrace a term that on its surface, seems to be shooters taking pot shots at hunters.


    Rust, those hunters need to read more. You can’t get enough information from a single comment or blog post. What your describing is the same phenomenon where someone comes in here, reads one post by Sebastian, and automatically accuses him of being a right-wing, Republican shill.

    Yes, but you see, hunters are a key demographic we need to reach, because they are among the greatest potential to expand the movement. Most of the people who come on here saying that to me aren’t reachable, because they have no interests I can appeal to. The problem with “fudd” as a term is that it won’t encourage them to keep reading. They’ll assume you’re anti-hunter and go away. “Elmer Fudd” has been a derogatory word for hunter long before gun people took it up.

  23. You’ll notice that was the first and only time I’ve used the term SNBI on this site if you search for the term. I’m not a fan of pejoratives.

    Indeed I did notice that, and I appreciate it. My point is that you haven’t seem to have gone far out of your way to criticize use of that term–even to the extent that you’ve expressed doubt about referring to rabid anti-gun sentiment as “bigotry,” or anti-gun rights hunters as “Fudds.”

    I don’t mean to imply that I’m terribly offended by this, just that I find it a bit inconsistent. It’s almost as if you advocate tougher “rules of engagement” for gun rights activists: gun owners shouldn’t call anti-gun zealots “bigots,” but gun rights advocates calling hunters who are willing to sell tactical firearms down the river are not to be called “Fudds.”

  24. Of course, you can also see me using the term “fudd” in a negative way, if you look back far enough. But in the intervening year or so I’ve come to realize it’s probably not helping things.

    I should also state that I wasn’t comparing the gun rights movement as a whole to race. It’s not a great metaphor, actually, but the n-word was the closest pejorative I could find to fudd, in that some people suggest it’s meant to apply to a subset, when the whole views it as something different. There are probably other examples that could be used without the baggage of race being brought into the discussion.

  25. Robb,

    I use the term in quotes as presently applied as a stereotype. I actually do use the term as a derogatory but I reserve it for in-person. I have used the term once on my blog and likewise in quotes as a reference in a post from over a year ago here.

    I think maybe it is time to write a follow-up post as an open letter to hunters. We need to “reach across the aisle” (spit) to make hunters see we are part of the same group whether we realize it or not.

  26. When Harry Belafonte discribed Condi Rice and Colin Powell as “House Slaves” I don’t think anybody thought he was disparraging all black people.

    He was disperraging Black REPUBLICANS, and that point was very clear.

    “Fudd” is very similar. “Poacher” is another spesific term that discribes a very spesific hunter.

    If somebody is unaware of the meaning of these terms I fail to see how they are any different than people who confuse AR-15s and M-16.

    We can’t be held responcible, or coddle other’s ignorance.

  27. Harry Belafonte can get away with it. What if Hillary Clinton had said it? It might not be rational, but it’s how people are.

  28. I understand where Sebastian is coming from. If we use the term ourselves to refer to other gun owners in a epithet/derogatory sense publicly, it diminishes our credibility as a whole the first time a BC/VPC or Obama appointee uses it as a club against us.

    The issue is outreach. I’ve met many hunters. Most are decent folk like us. Jobs, families, good values and so on. They simply suffer from ignorance. Or just don’t care beyond their desires and needs. That’s not a hunter issue; that’s just human nature.

    If I had a way to offer a free “Introductory EBR” class to any hunter interested, I’d do it in a heartbeat. Might help to overcome some of the prejudice.

    Some of it can’t be overcome. More than a few hunters are ex-military and see such rifles as military firearms regardless of function. They carried it then and don’t see a purpose for it now. Their experiences have shaped their perceptions. Not a lot we can do about that except ask they do not actively work against other fellow gun owners.

    It isn’t ideal but what in this world is? I’ll accept silent dislike of my preferred firearms over an active Quisling in my midst. Where do you think all those “I’m a gun owner but…” editorials came from? Not EBR owners. That needs to be countered and stopped before it gains too much traction.

    I’m not being responsible for other’s ignorance nor do I want it coddled. I want it countered.

  29. Matt:

    I’m not convinced the “I am a gun owner, but” people are either hunters or gun owners. If they are, they don’t identify as gun owners. There are a lot of people who own guns that would fork them over in a heart beat if the government made them illegal. Technically speaking, my sister is a gun owner, but it’s due to inheritance. She would fit in the category of someone who does not vote or think like a gun owner, because they are not part of her life. To those of us who hunt and shoot, guns are part of our lives. That’s why I’m suggesting that a lot of hunters who aren’t really thinking much about gun rights right now are a prime target market for our message.

  30. Sebastian,

    I don’t mind the gun owners who don’t think like one. They just see it as an item they own, shoot it once in a while and mostly forget about it.

    The “I am a gun owner but…” that actually take the time to comment on articles or send letters are acting as gun owners. They are engaging in activism whether they realize it or not and they are more corrosive to gaining a voice for gun rights most. Because their voice serves the purpose of the other side.

    Most are misinformed. They don’t identify themselves as activists and mostly believe whatever they read or are told by the media or second-hand. To them, it seems reasonable.

    One of my desires is to educate them. Or at least get them to stop and think about what they are saying. They probably don’t care about the issue beyond some notion of “reasonableness”. They lack education on the laws, on the technical aspects of firearms, no interest in being politically active and stay in their bubble. If we can break through this mindset, we can make some extra progress.

    At a minimum they won’t fight against us by given ammo to the other side. Hunters are the front line of that segment, as you say. Once we can make inroads in that group, hopefully information will trickle down.

  31. By the way, I hate to admit this, but you can call me a “son of a Fudd,” and I couldn’t deny it.

    I have to watch myself to be sure I don’t mention AHSA in front of my Dad–he’d join ’em and donate in a heartbeat, if he knew about them.

  32. I don’t like calling “fudd” a pejorative, because most fudds would be offended by the use of the word pejorative.

    I’m thinking “AHSAholes” might help make the distinction.

  33. Indeed. Good one, BadIdeaGuy. The only problem I have using that one in public (written) discourse is (aside from uncontrollable giggles) that by even mentioning the AHSA, it lends them some legitimacy. But that is neither here nor there because no amount of lent legitimacy will ever amount to actual legitimacy.

    AHSAhole. That’s much better than GOB (“gun owner but”.)

  34. A lot of hunters that can be classified as Fudds are older white folk that hunted in the 50’s and 60’s and were scared of the 68 riots and supported gun control because they were afraid of being murdered by uppity black folk. That fear was real and not truly irrational.

    We all know them. When they grew up there was no gun control other than 1934 act and they ordered guns freely by mail and picked up guns in other states. They already had the firearms they wanted so when 1968 came about they were not bothered.

    The gun control agenda of the 1970’s and 1980’s got them accepting the idea that guns are bad in the hands of the city folk who abuse them and it was not a bad idea to keep guns away from those folk.

    Those elderly Fudds do need to be educated that NJ laws do take away their hunting rifles and prevent them to teach their grandchildren to hunt. That their hunting rifles and shotguns cab be banned.

    Most people are not bothered by the abstract rights being infringed, it is when it becomes personal they object.

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