A billboard promoting the Pro Shots Range in Winston-Salem. As one outraged passer-by wrote,

The Pansies Converted Daily billboard is quite possibly the most offensive advertisement I’ve ever seen. Congratulations. According to dictionary.com, the slang meaning of the word pansy is a) a male homosexual, b) a weak, effeminate, and often cowardly man. Either way, it is derogatory and designed to intimidate a certain population. Your billboard is an example of institutionalized bullying which incites violence towards homosexuals. Or do you actually have pots of pansies that people shoot, thus converting them to rubble? Please clarify your meaning. If I am incorrect in my assumption, I will promptly apologize and come to your range to destroy flower pots.

[h/t thegunwire.com]

47 Responses to Incendiary Image of the Day: Outdoor Edition

  1. My reply would be:

    The sign stands on it’s own. The meaning you take from it is up to you. Consider it interpretive art.

    And fuck off.

  2. That pansy’s rant proves their point. Namely that the best way to get over fear is to confront it. So it is with hoplophobia that the best way to rid oneself of the condition is a positive firsthand experience on the firing line.

    • Probably the best way to get over homophobia is to have sex with a man.

      Sorry, couldn’t resist, the words are so similar.

  3. When I read the billboard I thought of the second meaning, “a weak, effeminate, and often cowardly man.” I didn’t catch the homosexual angle, I suppose due to my incredible macho and self-assured personhood.

    No, seriously, I reacted like the comment in the post even without the gay thing attached to it. That’s offensive advertising and it shows what idiots some (many) gun owners are.

    What HSR47 said though, is really funny. Being innocent of hypocrisy, I’m sure he would be willing to turn that around and ask himself if “the best way to get over [his] fear is to confront it.” You know, his fear of going out of the house without a gun, and the fear of not having a gun around in case a burglar comes in the night. If the pansies should get over their fear by going to the gun range, then you guys should try getting rid of your guns as a way of exorcising your various fears. Am I wrong?

    • “When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation… and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.”

      “The Gun Is Civilization” by Maj. L. Caudill USMC (Ret)

        • What are you talking about. That’s not trolling. Is your vocabulary that poor.

          I’m expressing the utmost expression of ridicule at what your Marine and you have to say.

          “I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid.”

          Does that work for you? If so your bias for all the macho gun-totin, tough-talk has blinded you.

          Besides, I’m not a troll, I’m a pansy.

        • “What are you talking about? That’s not trolling. Is your vocabulary that poor?”
          —–
          Fixed. Oh, the delicious irony! And I stand corrected; you wish to be referred to as a “pansy”.

    • As I recall, you carry pretty constantly. Using your logic you shouldn’t recommend anything you yourself wouldn’t do. Or are you admitting to fear since you carry daily?

    • By your reasoning I should get over my fears by swapping out my manly Coonhounds for some pansy fru fru dogs. One reason I have always had big dogs is the protection aspect. I mean, who is going to break into my house or attack my on the street with two big dogs with huge sets of teeth and a loud bark

      Mike, you need to pick your threads more carefully lest you look humorless.

    • The only people who operate from fear are your repulsive ilk, mikey, and irrational fear at that. Like the worn out comparison goes, saying I carry a gun because I’m afraid is like saying I have a fire extinguisher in my kitchen because I’m afraid. No, I’m prepared. I like having tools for any eventuality. I know, such a level of personal responsibility and non-emotional logic is beyond your feeble grasp, almost as beyond as your respect of personal freedom.

      • Silver you sound like one of those kids in the school yard who argue, did too, did not, did too.

        I accuse you of being fearful as a motication to own guns. Some of your friends, I suppose the more honest ones have admitted as much. They say, like me, who wants to be robbed at gun point and not have a gun. Who wants to see their wife or daughter hurt and not have a gun handy. I don’t and you don’t.

        The difference is this. Unless your a drug dealer, unless you service ATM machines at night, unless you work in a bodega in the Bronx, you have a very small chance of ever needing the gun. The chances of your having an accident, a negligent discharge, one of your family members doing something stupid with the gun, your getting depressed and blowing your brains out in a crazy moment are all more likely than the chance that the gun will one day save your life. It’s a bad deal and therefore YOU are the irrational one. You are operating on unfounded fear.

        What I have is not fear. I have disapproval for what you do. I feel you and your friends are a menace, and that’s whether or not you can admit your decision to own and/or carry a gun is fear based.

        • so give up your home address so we can put your theory to the test and see how you react when the homies show up

        • Your disproving tone here makes no sense. You yourself should carry no weapons at any time unless you experience any of the situations you yourself listed. The odds are you do not. But you own and carry guns. You have yet to address that you do regularly the same things we do but want us not to do because you do not approve.

          What makes you special enough to own and carry guns and us not so? Or is carrying two guns and “Semper paratus” not evidence of paranoia in your eyes when you say it?

        • –I have no enemies. But I’m a big believer in preparing for them, you know, the sniper’s nest in the attic, at least two weapons on my person at all times, hyper-awareness of my surroundings, never relaxing for a moment. Semper paratus, baby.–

          You said that in this post. http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2011/12/robert-farago/question-of-the-day-do-you-have-any-enemies/

          At the top of this thread you state that the idea of carrying a gun is flawed and that it is nearly never to be needed and that carrying it makes you a greater liability to everyone you come into contact with than it will ever actually be of use.

          “–The difference is this. Unless your a drug dealer, unless you service ATM machines at night, unless you work in a bodega in the Bronx, you have a very small chance of ever needing the gun. The chances of your having an accident, a negligent discharge, one of your family members doing something stupid with the gun, your getting depressed and blowing your brains out in a crazy moment are all more likely than the chance that the gun will one day save your life. It’s a bad deal and therefore YOU are the irrational one. You are operating on unfounded fear.–“

          Unless you have a special dislike of the user “Silver” then you’re saying this about all people who own and carry guns. So…why do you carry guns and disparage and disprove so much of others doing the same? You keep insisting we own and carry guns out of fear. Does that mean you also own and carry guns out of fear? Even if it does mean that it doesn’t add up, Mike. If you insist we are a menace and will never need guns then why do you have any at all and bother to carry at any point? It makes you no different than we are so how can you speak against something you’re also doing?

        • Mike:

          I agree with you.

          First the good news: If you live in the District of Columbia you only have a daily probability of being a victim of a violent crime on order of 10^-5. That works out to 1.4% per year. Now for the bad news: If you come to the District at age 25, work for 40 years and then leave your probability of being a victim of violent crime is nearly 50%.

          Across the river, where it is much safer because of the number of guns held by the general population the probability of a being a victim of a violent crime is still a non trivial 12%. Small probabilities get large over time.

          Back in the day when I was a functional operations analyst we were having a discussion on how to interpret the outcome of a certain class of combat models. One member of the group called the class the set of “Dirty Harry” problems. This is how a Dirty Harry problem works. You are faced with the prospect of entering the arena with either Dirty Harry or Walter Mitty. Your probability of dying if you face Harry is 1 and 0 if you face Walter. Your opponent is chosen by the flip of a coin after you enter the arena. A simple naive expected value calculation says you have a 50% chance of survival which from a mathematical point view is correct. However, the correct interpretation is that you a 50% probability of dying 100% of the time. That has a significantly different meaning from the naively calculated expected value when you are dealing with one and done encounter. Being a victim of violent crime falls into the class of Dirty Harry problems. When it happens bad things happen to you 100% of the time.

          And of course you undermine your entire argument for taking away most American’s guns. They won’t be using them to commit murder and Mayhem. Only a small set of thugs and gang bangers account for almost all the violent crime. We both know that banning guns will only create a black-market for firearms to go along with drugs and other contraband. The thugs and gang bangers will still have guns and the entire nation will look like Washington DC instead of Virginia.

        • Unless your a drug dealer, unless you service ATM machines at night, unless you work in a bodega in the Bronx, you have a very small chance of ever needing the gun. The chances of your having an accident, a negligent discharge, one of your family members doing something stupid with the gun, your getting depressed and blowing your brains out in a crazy moment are all more likely than the chance that the gun will one day save your life.

          The question is not “what are the odds?” or “what are the risks?” but rather “to whom does it fall to evaluate those risks for your particular situation?”

          That people are fallible, that they tend to overestimate some risks and underestimate others, I accept. That there are likely a significant number of people that have miscalculated their risks and currently own and use guns in ways that make them less safe I likewise acknowledge and accept. The problem is that we do not have the option of turning these decisions over to infallible angels. We must content ourselves with governments made up of human beings no less fallible than these gun owners, and far less acquainted with the details of their personal situations. Given these realities I prefer to leave such decisions to individuals as much as possible.

    • ”…his fear of going out of the house without a gun, and the fear of not having a gun around in case a burglar comes in the night… then you guys should try getting rid of your guns as a way of exorcising your various fears. Am I wrong?”

      Yes you are wrong. It’s not being without a firearm that I am afraid of. The burglars that come around at night are what frighten me. What is the best way of protecting yourself from these bad guys? I choose good ol’ firepower.
      The desire to protect one’s family and the instinct for self preservation is something that comes natural to MEN. Spineless wussy-boys, otherwise known as pansies, tend to lack this characteristic, and so they often fall in the anti- crowd.

    • Ah, our resident troll. I’m sorry that you’re upset to have your cowardice of being afraid of inanimate objects pointed out to you. Perhaps you could gain some testicular fortitude and stop being afraid of inanimate objects? Just saying….

  4. Man, that guy was obviously a pansy or else he wouldn’t have taken it so personally!

    But then if you were to watch the Bravo channel, you’d likely be thinking that being a pansy is a good thing.

  5. What the hell is wrong with being offensive? Seriously? I think that our culture’s complete inability to take a joke is one of our major problems. If you don’t like it, move on. – I do think this whole topic proves the point. We have become so soft and sensitive that a billboard can offend us. We act like saying something others seem to be inappropriate is a major crime. We need a reality check…

    • I recently read the entire Constitution (try it – it’s a whole lot shorter than any recent Federal law). Nowhere in that document was I able to find a “right to not be offended”, or even a “right to FEEL safe”. “The pursuit of happiness” was never intended to be a guarantee.

  6. i did not know that pansies was coded language for gay people, or is this guy fishing for something to be outraged about?

  7. I don’t think the billboard’s a great idea. It’s kind of preaching to the choir.

    But it’s fairly obvious that it isn’t meaning homosexuals. There’s no reason that target shooting would convert homosexuals, whereas there’s at least a connection between taking up arms and not being a coward.

    I would judge a homosexual the same for being a “pansy” as I would a straight man. Or woman, for that matter.

  8. I hope that one day a pansy shows up and beats the hell out of me and the grizzled old men at a match. Then he goes home and tells his boyfriend or partner or whatever how he’s soooo excited and how good the new holster looked. AND THEN we have two more people who will vote pro RKBA.
    We don’t need fewer pansies; we need more enthusiastic, responsible and politically active gun owners.

  9. “What the hell is wrong with being offensive? Seriously? I think that our culture’s complete inability to take a joke is one of our major problems.”

    It helps if the joke is funny.In this case I saw some humor in it. I could not find anything that the average person would find offensive in the word “pansies”.

    But then I wasn’t aware that some may use that word to refer to a homosexual.Now it instead of pansie, fag or queer were used, at best I would find it distasteful.

    Go down the list of racial, religious, ethnic etc. epithet.How many of those would be funny.

    • That’s the point. You could put up 1000 things that I would find distasteful (hell turn on a television). The point is I don’t go getting all righteous about it telling people that they need to amend their sensibilities so as to appease me. I simply realize that people have their own opinions and move on.

      • Hey, I find your suggestion that I “turn on a television” to be offensive. How dare you recommend that I inflict such drivel on my innocent mind!! (sarcasm off). Like they say – you can’t control what other people say, but you can control how you react to it. Taking offense at what other people do or say is simply giving THEM control over your emotions and your actions. That’s why it is so much fun to tweak mikeb.

    • I think you mean epithet, not epitaph. Either way, we’re still allowed to make art or advertising that is incredibly offensive. The gay comment is like race-baiting. There is no homophobic context there, and any subtle prejudice is on the part of dictionary.com.

      • During my childhood, some 40 years ago, a “pansy” was either a homosexual or an effeminate male. That was the common usage.

      • “I think you mean epithet, not epitaph.”

        Thank you, I had time to correct it.

        “Either way, we’re still allowed to make art or advertising that is incredibly offensive.”

        Absolutely

        By the same token the audience is allowed to evaluate and comment.

  10. I have never once heard “pansy” used as a derogatory slur against homosexuals. Not once, and I’ve heard lots over the years.

    The thing that’s bizarre is that it’s one of the least offensive “insults” you could ever use and this guy went apeshit over it. My friends and I were using harsher words towards each other in elementary school.

    I assume that “pansy” was supposed to be a substitute for the more oft-used insult “pussy,” which obviously they couldn’t have put on a public billboard. That particular insult is definitely not a jab at gay men at all.

    • Yeah, when I was a kid pansy, pussy, wussy, and sissy were all synonyms for being a wimp. There was a whole different batch of words for gays.

      • “Yeah, when I was a kid pansy, pussy, wussy, and sissy were all synonyms for being a wimp. There was a whole different batch of words for gays.”

        +1

  11. Growing up in Texas, “pansy” implied homosexuality, or at least cowardice (an unrelated condition which afflicts most heterosexual males). I know a number of gay/lesbian people, and they’ve had to put up with a lot more sh&% than most of us have over the course of their lives. Here is another group which should be armed, but which the right-wing bigoted mentality of many in the gun community rejects.

    I don’t think this billboard was meant to be anti-gay. But it’s still stupid.

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