This story has made its rounds for amusement, but it should also be highlighted as an example of the fine acumen of liberal reporting. Seriously.
Reporter Gersh Kuntzman of the New York Daily News went the extra mile for anti-gun propaganda (some liberal peers still doggedly call it “reporting”) this week by getting hands-on: he actually went to a gun range and, quivering with fear, fired the menacing, terroristic death-stick known as the AR-15. I don’t have to tell you how this turned out.
It felt to me like a bazooka—and sounded like a cannon. . . .
I was just terrified. . . .
The recoil bruised my shoulder. The brass shell casings disoriented me as they flew past my face. The smell of sulfur and destruction made me sick. The explosions — loud like a bomb — gave me a temporary case of PTSD. For at least an hour after firing the gun just a few times, I was anxious and irritable.
Even in semi-automatic mode, it is very simple to squeeze off two dozen rounds before you even know what has happened. In fully automatic mode, it doesn’t take any imagination to see dozens of bodies falling in front of your barrel.
Most sane persons have instinctively heaved ridicule at this piece. As Kuntzman’s own follow-up shares, the vast majority questioned his manhood. One quick jester noted, “Hey there Cupcake! . . . I have never subscribed to the idea of ‘gender confusion,’ but after reading your article on the AR-15, I’m a believer because there is no way you and I are the same gender.” Call it liberal evangelism.
Several others did the obvious: sent pics or videos of their elementary-aged children firing the same weapon with smiles. Burn.
The heart-wrenched, dripping fear Kuntzman displayed certainly is an easy target for such ridicule—and I agree, it deserves it. But I want us to be careful here, because we really need to be fair and compassionate. We don’t want to offend anyone.
For example, one may be tempted to muse whether Kuntzman had to change his petticoat after this terrifying shock. But such a remark would be a tremendous insult to women everywhere.
Likewise, one may wonder whether Kuntzman needed a hug and an Otter-Pop to soothe his post-traumatic quivers. Perhaps an extra bedtime story to stave off nightmares. But again, this type of offensiveness is highly unacceptable. Why insult children with such a comparison?
I remember when I was about 12, my grandpa taught me to shoot. Now my grandparents had the cutest toy poodle—the tiniest breed of poodle there is. But when grandpa got out the guns, the dog bee-lined for its little bed, tail between its legs. Grandpa said she was always scared of the loud bangs.
When we came back inside from shooting, the poor dog lay curled up in her bed, cowering, ears lowered, with an uncontrollable case of the shakes. Poor little thing.
Now here, finally, we find a fitting image for Mr. Kuntzman’s reported experience. And yet, still, I just can’t go there, out of respect for dogs and dog lovers.
So, I honestly don’t know how best to categorize this failure, except maybe “epic.” But that’s so cliché, and way more serious than Kuntzman deserves. Cowardly. Comical. Farcical. Almost amusing—albeit that’s only true if he was in earnest to begin with.
Was Kuntzman lying?
There are a number of people who simply think this is so ridiculous it has to be made up. This is the “Kuntzman is a liar” hypothesis—which, I admit, has a certain plausibility.
It also has supporting evidence. For starters, Kuntzman has since quietly edited his original piece in light of the torrents of laughter, clearly trying to ameliorate his case without being too obvious. Yet his article currently contains no information or note disclosing these edits. Note the current version here with edits in bold italics:
The recoil bruised my shoulder, which can happen if you don’t know what you’re doing. The brass shell casings disoriented me as they flew past my face. The smell of sulfur and destruction made me sick. The explosions — loud like a bomb — gave me a temporary form [not “case”] of PTSD. For at least an hour after firing the gun just a few times, I was anxious and irritable.
Even in semi-automatic mode, it is very simple to squeeze off two dozen rounds before you even know what has happened. If illegally modified to fully automatic mode, it doesn’t take any imagination to see dozens of bodies falling in front of your barrel.
The edits seem to me to be a response of HotAir’s two particular criticisms: the ridiculousness of a .223 actually bruising someone’s shoulder, and the nonsense about an AR-15 being “In fully automatic”—something not available on the vast majority (like 99.99%) of civilian models.
But instead of saying “oops, I was wrong, sorry,” Kuntzman edits the story without admitting his faults. Pulitzer material, that.
Secondly, even after showing such sensitivity to cover his tail, Kuntzman doubles down on his spin. In his follow-up, he continues:
Yes, this weapon scared the crap out of me. And it should scare the crap out of all of you, too. An AR-15 is a weapon of mass destruction, . . .
Brilliant! The best way to cover up one lie is to tell an even bigger one. And this one even does double service. It attempts to excuse Kuntzman’s diaper while at the same time magnifying his propaganda: to stigmatize the AR-15. Now it’s not just big-loud-bang, boo-hoo scary. Now it’s a weapon of mass destruction!
Except, WMDs actually only refer to chemical, biological, or radioactive devices; or in the case of civilian criminal definitions, certain bombs, grenades, and missiles. But sorry, no AR-15s here.
And someone really should inform Kuntzman that with such careless use of terms like “weapons of mass destruction,” a liberal journalist could end up doing something like, oh I don’t know, justifying GWB’s invasion of Iraq, for example.
But the unintended consequences don’t end there. Do the clueless scaremongers not realize how much they help the gun industry with antics like this? For the sane, there is no better ad-copy than Kuntzman’s article. Ad-writers dream of writing copy this good!
GET THE GUN THAT GIVES LIBERALS INSTANT PTSD
“Feels like a Bazooka, Sounds like a Cannon!”*
THIS WEEKEND ONLY!
WHILE SUPPLIES LAST
*Source: The New York Daily News
Plus, fully automatic? Take my money!
So I said Kuntzman’s article needs distribution for the great example of liberal acumen that it is. Well, that was a bit tongue in cheek, but there is some truth to it. Make no mistake: the lessons to be learned here are not found in the obvious inverted pyramid of authorial intent, but in the more penetrating bullet points read between the lines. (Nota bene: some of these are review lessons from many past experiences.)
What we learn here starts with nothing new: liberals don’t like guns. The part about Kuntzman being “anxious and irritable” is believable, too, but I assume it to be the case of self-righteous progressives in general, loud bangs or not. But as for the old lesson about liberals hating guns, we can thank Kuntzman for bringing out the Bozo routine at its heart.
We also see the lesson—so often repeated—that liberals will spin the biggest lies imaginable in service of their agenda, which is, after all, built on even bigger lies.
We also learn that when their lies are exposed by facts or common sense, they will lie again in an attempt to cover their exposed lies.
We learn, therefore, that liberal humanists are generally impervious to facts. But this is instructive: it means they and their agenda can only be emotionally-driven.
Now it’s all starting to make sense. This conclusion comports perfectly with Kuntzman’s overall case: he was terrified of the loud bang made by the AR-15. He was disoriented and rendered dysfunctional by something that most men, many women, and even some children find invigorating, exciting, an inspiring source of confidence and freedom, and yet quite uncomplicated: a low-caliber, common self-defense weapon.
Questions of manhood and maturity aside (though not dismissed), there is really a simple issue here of one being out of touch with reality.
And, finally, we can deduce a corollary from our lessons: one of the best ways to keep liberals away from you, to keep them in a semi-catatonic state (the silence would be golden), and to make sure you don’t become like a liberal, is to learn about guns yourself, to buy an AR-15, and to shoot it often.
Now, if we can figure out a way to make these lying humanists equally fearful of keyboards and Congress, we will be making real progress.