Jerry Tsai Resigns from RECOIL Magazine

From RECOIL’s website:

It is with deep sorrow that I announce I am stepping down as editor of Recoil, effective immediately.

It is very difficult for me to walk away from something I helped create, something that I loved doing, and something I firmly believed would appeal to a fresh new generation of gun enthusiasts, but I accept that the comments in my story in the current issue have made my position as editor of Recoil untenable.

With that said, Recoil is bigger than any one person, and if my departure will allow Recoil to continue to grow and engage gun enthusiasts, then stepping down as editor is clearly the right thing for me to do.

I accept I made mistakes, and I apologize unreservedly for calling Recoil’s support for Second Amendment rights into question.

While I understand the passions aroused over this incident, the deeply hurtful words from some of my fellow gun enthusiasts have been painful to endure. I hope now we can all move on.

Finally, I would like to thank all those who have supported me over the past few days. These are the people who know me to be at heart a passionate gun enthusiast whose dream was to make something bold and new in firearms media.

Jerry Tsai

comments

  1. avatar bill says:

    Let me be the first to say: Bye bye

    Read some history and learn how rights and freedoms erode unless defended vigorously at all times. Then once you get how damaging what you said was maybe someone will be willing to listen.

  2. avatar David in Los Angeles says:

    See ya! Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

  3. avatar ChrisJ says:

    Wow, after how many tries he still can’t recant what he said? “I accept I made mistakes,” is as close as he’s going to get? Perhaps his stepping down really is for the best.

    1. avatar Brewski says:

      It isn’t so much that he didn’t recant what he originally said in the article. That may have saved his job if that was the first thing he did. But, instead, he tried to pass the buck onto H&K and they put him in his place. So he was now nailed on both fronts: saying something silly, and then trying to blame someone else.

      It’s one thing to own up to a mistake you personally make. Everyone makes mistakes, everyone can relate to that. It’s easy to forgive for the most part if the recognition and apology soon follow. Editors from all sorts of magazines correct their mistakes all the time by coming out and admitting it right off the bat. Not a big deal.

      It’s something quite different to try to pass off your mistake as someone else’s when you know it’s a 100% fabrication. That’s what cost him his job.

      Lying is a cowardly, immature act that’s reserved for children that don’t know any better. Lying has no place in an editorial position in a popular magazine with an informed readership especially when you know everything you say will be documented and easily attainable online. You will simply get caught. Especially lies.

      What a silly way to go.

  4. avatar Cameron S. says:

    He said everything except for that what he said was wrong.

    He’s still not fully pro-2a… good riddance.

  5. avatar JOE MATAFOME says:

    He did the right thing and stepped down, but he destroyed recoil with his silly comment and they’ll be the next to go.

    1. avatar The Guy says:

      Nah, if anything this incident just gave them more press. RECOIL will be fine.

  6. avatar aversusb says:

    An apology would have been sufficient from the get go. He, and Recoil magazine let this linger on too long. The straw that broke the editors back was when advertisers began pulling support of the magazine. No advertising, no money. No money, no magazine. In order for Recoil to survive, it was the only thing that could be done. Now the hard task of the EIC and Sales Manager to to and reel back in the likes of Magpul, H&K, etc…

    1. avatar Matt Berry says:

      Seriously? They let it linger too long? This started on Sunday afternoon. The man resigned four days later. It’s not like this dragged on for months.

      Some people need to remember that the rest of the world does not run at the speed of something gone viral on the internet.

      1. avatar ChrisJ says:

        Keep in mind that they responded a couple of times already.

        This would have all gone away had they in response #1 said something to the effect of, “Sorry we’re wrong, just got a little carried away without giving appropriate context regarding the NFA to what I was trying to say. Again sorry, and it won’t happen again.”

        POOF! Controversy gone!

  7. avatar Anon says:

    I’m posting as anon, because I don’t know that my name makes a big differences, because I’m not “known” in the gun world. My goal here is only to point out some fundamental behavior I’m seeing, in an effort to make some forward progress on the debate of gun rights.

    There are extreme on both sides of gun rights. The reason you will not see people who are anti-gun rights EVER, EVER, EVER give you an inch and they will ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS fight you on everything is precisely because of what the above comments represent: the perception that pro-gun rights people will not be happy until they have it exactly their way, and those same people lack the social awareness to not be a jerk about everything. When you piss people off, people dig in, and they’ll fight you every step of the way. Good work guys.

    1. avatar CarlosT says:

      Yeah, I’ll cop to that. I won’t be happy until the Bill of Rights in its entirety, including the Second Amendment, is respected and observed.

      1. avatar Buzzy243 says:

        ^^ Yes! What this guy said.

    2. avatar jwm says:

      Dig in and fight? What sort of nonsense is this? All my life the grabbers have been trying to take my rights and when I push back I’m being unreasonable?
      The only compromise these people want is for me to give up my rights. Fvck them and their Fvcktard supporters.

    3. avatar GS650G says:

      umm Mr Anon you really should see how rabid the left is about guns and some of the proposals for a new world order they have. It’s beyond belief.
      FLAME DELETED

    4. avatar Silver says:

      “When you piss people off, people dig in, and they’ll fight you every step of the way.”

      Damn right. The antis who have been after our rights for decades are finding that out the hard way.

      1. avatar Anon says:

        I’m the same anon as above. If I post again, I’ll start using my name.

        It’s not unreasonable to push back and fight for your rights. It’s unreasonable to be jerks about it. Some guy just lost his job. Now you guys are being picky about how he lost his job. Losing a job is a big deal. It’s a big deal. There’s a lot of tough emotions that come with it. We should be caring about actions and things happening rather than the words of a guy who’s trying to save a little face. I’m sorry you didn’t get to completely break down a guy who said something stupid like some of you wanted to. But he’s not there anymore, like many posters here wanted.

        As far as how people feel about extreme anti’s: they’re wrong, but ranting about how stupid they are on the internet makes little progress. Also, consider Tsai’s next move. You think he’s one step closer to the gun community and being pro gun rights, or do you think he’s going to take a step away from a lynching crowd? Maybe you thought what he said was dumb, but it was already said. By calling for his head you didn’t undo any damage. You tried to prevent further damage. My assertion is that be being jerks, you made a mess of preventing further damage.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          Anon, I remember when they passed the 68gca. I also remember the venom that has been spewed at gun owners who’s only crime was wishing to own a gun. Being decent, civil or respectful has gotten us nothing.
          Tsai lost his job. I only wish that feinstein, schumer, pelosi, bloomberg and both clinton’s and barry would lose theirs also.
          If I have a take no prisoners attitude it’s been pounded into me by the opposition.

        2. avatar CinSC says:

          IF the gun rights crowd is being jerky, it’s certainly understandable. Gun owners have had a ton of mud slung at them by the gun control crowd over the years. We’ve been called dumb, murderous, intolerant, insecure, bitter, rednecks for decades by gun grabbers in magazines, television, movies, newspapers, online and on the streets. I think it’s safe to say that the grabbers are getting what they give and no more.

          Jerry remained rather unapologetic about the essence of the offending statement, perhaps betraying his real attitude toward the second amendment. Quitting, getting fired, whatever, was appropriate.

          Every gun rag editor should have a framed photo of Jerry hung on their office wall.

    5. avatar Jean Paul says:

      The difference between anti-gun hardliners and pro-gun hardliners? Pro-gun people don’t want to force the anti-gunners to OWN a gun. Anti gun hardliners want to impose on my rights.

      There is ONLY one position, and that’s to never give an inch.

  8. avatar Mr. Lion says:

    Might want to close that italic tag in the article.

    1. avatar Robert Farago says:

      THANK YOU

  9. avatar OHgunner says:

    So much for “There’s no such thing as bad publicity”. I would be a lifetime subscriber if they became a very vocal and active supporter of CITIZEN machine gun and suppressor rights and got legislation passed to repeal NFA and the Hughes (illegal) amendment.

    Hear that RECOIL? Regain our faith by regaining our rights!

  10. avatar RIGHT! says:

    He’s the Victim,Typical

  11. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

    maybe Jerry can get a job with Oprah’s rag O

  12. avatar ST says:

    Yippie Ki Yay Mother##8&.

  13. avatar Silver says:

    While it’s nice to have “gun enthusiasts” in this country, it’s imperative that we have “gun rights advocates.” The former only exist because the latter hold the line.

  14. avatar Jean Paul says:

    There hasn’t been a gun magazine worth a damn in this country since “Pistolero”, anyway. Fat Phil Engeldrum FTW!!

  15. avatar sdog says:

    i love how he manages put in how is “feelings” were hurt over people flipping out over his initial statement and then his continued intransigence over the idiocy of his statements has only made things worse for him, and yes, his continued refusal to simply say “look, my bad I’m sorry i put my foot in my mouth” has probably made the vitriol directed towards him only worse. Well now he sure has plenty of time to put some salve on his “hurt feelings.” Maybe he can find a job for over at the nation magazine.

    Jerry Tsai = dog barf

  16. avatar MotoJB says:

    Now if we can only get a good 2/3’rds of our politicians to do the same…

  17. avatar Stephen says:

    “Well then…… Bye…”

    (name that film and win a free something!)

    1. avatar Jfoster says:

      Tombstone

  18. avatar TangledThorns says:

    Real shame that this had to happen to such a new and awesome magazine. I hope this doesn’t mean the end of Recoil.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Mother of Mercy, a hidden “Little Caesar” reference. Nice work!

  19. avatar APBTFan says:

    I’m going to come off as an apologist but personally I would have preferred to see Mr. Tsai stay on but make a concerted effort to meet with and talk with gunners from all walks to get a better feeling of what the average gunner holds dear.

    I think Mr. Tsai’s heart is in the right place but after his infamous article, and not so great apology, he was shown nothing but the sharp end of the stick. Think about it; most, if not all, of us will bend over backwards and show great patience teaching our values to anyone not familiar with them. Mr. Tsai was obviously not in tune with the general gun community but as the editor of a popular gun rag I think it would have been more constructive to educate the man instead of crucifying him.

    That’s all. I’ve already gone far too hippie for my comfort zone.

    1. avatar Brewski says:

      It could’ve gone one of two ways that would’ve been “acceptable”:

      1) He could’ve stuck to his guns (no pun intended) and then just clarified the statement he made by adding a “in this editor’s opinion” or crafting an editor’s reply further explaining “what he really meant to say” rather than just leaving it vague having it appear that his view that “certain guns the public shouldn’t be allowed to own” (a simple opinion) was shared by RECOIL.

      Granted, this would have probably cost him his job not too far in the future anyway unless he really came up with a good reason for saying what he did.

      There was a lot of room to explain his statement in a way that didn’t seem like a “cop out”. Yes, it would have just been just another opinionated article, but he could have at least taken full ownership of it from the get-go. Even if his readership disagreed, they’d at least respect the guy for standing behind his article.

      2) He could have issued a clear reversal of what he said in a swift manner as soon as all the readership and internet backlash started occurring — instead of trying to put the blame on H&K.

      Instead he waffled on the issue and straddled the fence. You can’t do that in an editor’s position. You must pick a side. You either wrote that article and meant what you said or you didn’t. Behaving as if it wrote itself and trying to step away from a hot topic (or poorly worded section) and no way for an writer, let alone a magazine editor to behave.

  20. avatar Johnny says:

    Even with him gone, I don’t think I’ll be picking up an issue of RECOIL. I just can’t trust this publication.

  21. avatar Shire-man says:

    The problem with Recoil and the subsequent problem with Tsai is that they are targeting the largely firearm-ignorant urbanite Call of Duty playing young-adult who loves trumped up nonsense and ridiculous claims like the one Tsai made in the article: The thing is just too powerful. Too awesome for you. You cant handle how cool it is. And other pubescent tripe.

    I cant blame them. That’s where all the money is.

    Hyping things up as “too awesome for you” and “most dangerous and powerful” sells to that class of consumer more than truth, fact or reality. It’s that sort of ignorance that got us the teflon bullet fear frenzy and legislators who warn against shoulder things that go up.

    It’s good and all to take that virtual gun loving audience and mold them into real firearm fanatics (liberty and all) but if you drop the ball as Tsai did and perpetuate this notion of a simple thing being just “too awesome for you” all your doing is creating another generation of “reasonable restrictions” drones at best and a new batch of angry “better than you” recruits for todays police forces and military at worst.

    It’s what his and Recoils audience wants.

    1. avatar nonnamous says:

      Hey now, this is nothing generational. Don’t blame COD fanboys…myself and 3 of my closest friends played TONS of it in college, and now we all own multiple firearms (and have a much greater sense of what liberty is) than we otherwise would have. COD/BF, etc., are excellent tools to introduce this generation to guns — This “class of consumer” is far from just “young-adults who loves trumped up nonsense and ridiculous claims”. MY generation has never passed any AWBs or GCAs.

  22. avatar GA_Koenig says:

    Yeaa!!!

    More of the gun community eating it’s own in the name of righteous indignation to the max!

    I swear to god, my fellow gun owners just flipping LOVE being pissed off, paranoid and otherwise freak show over anything they possibly can.

    1. avatar Eric B. says:

      Tsai’s resignation/firing is not an example of “eating our own”. Had he expressed his opinion in a manner that made it clear that it was his opinion, then we’d have a different situation on our hands. But that’s not what happened. He tried to pass his opinion as a fact, got very uncomfortable when his readership called him out, and then tried to blame the manufacturer for causing a “misunderstanding”. That’s a problem, whether we’re writing about guns, cars, or Beanie Baby collecting.

      There is a convenient place for editors to express their opinion, and logically enough it’s called an “editorial”.

      Hopefully Tsai uses his newly-found free time to study the concept of E-Prime. It might have saved him a lot of hassle.

  23. avatar Leo Atrox says:

    Jerry “manned up” and did what RECOIL and its publisher apparently didn’t have the cajones to do. I thought when he was gone I might renew my interest in buying a subscription, but I’m disappointed that it was Jerry Tsai that resigned rather than the publisher firing him as editor and relocating him to another publication. Jerry made a mistake. It is a mistake that he should lose his job over, but a mistake nonetheless. It wasn’t right for him to resign for a mistake. An honorable man asks for forgiveness and moves on; he shouldn’t need to quit. But an honorable publication accepts their responsibility for a fiasco and makes changes to show that they will not continue with the offending behavior. RECOIL did not do this. They didn’t accept responsibility, and they didn’t take any action. Very disappointing.

    1. avatar MotoJB says:

      Dude, you don’t know how it works…he was told to resign. That happens at high levels like this. They give you the option to leave “gracefully, on your own accord” (not really true), but it’s to save face. He was shown the door.

  24. avatar colby says:

    I couldnt care less about this magazine fiasco. I fail to see what quantifiable bearing any of this really has on my gun rights.

    1. avatar Not Your Mother says:

      Then you can resign, too.

    2. avatar MotoJB says:

      Try living in CA, NY or MA…you’ll then understand what it means when even supposedly “pro-gun magazines” seem to start drawing the line negatively on gun eligibility/rights.

  25. avatar g says:

    Wow… do we actually have people here there that are mad that the guy resigned instead of getting FIRED? Harsh.

    Yeah, I know there’s a difference between the two, but the result is the same: someone lost their job. For the largely male audience of TTAG, I’m pretty sure we all know the value of work and how not having a job can be a difficult circumstance, not just personally, but for one’s family as well. Imagine yourself in Tsai’s circumstances.

    Call me old fashioned, but I enjoy print & paper magazines…. having a new gun-related mag like RECOIL was very welcome, if even I didn’t agree with the controversial statement from the infamous MP7 article. I hope the remaining staff at RECOIL stick with it, and come back new and improved.

    Let’s move on, people.

    1. avatar CarlosT says:

      I’m not mad, but it would have been better for RECOIL’S credibility if they had let him go than if he resigns. They wouldn’t have to be cruel about it, but if it came from them it would clearly signal that the magazine itself doesn’t support his statements. Much more so than the separate press release they put out after he resigned.

      Either way, it’s done now and we’ll see if they can recover.

  26. avatar Ralph says:

    the deeply hurtful words from some of my fellow gun enthusiasts have been painful to endure

    Well, Jerry, those “deeply hurtful” words were a lot less painful than the crap you published. See ya.

  27. This guy screwed up but after he admitted it, he should have been given a pass. It does not serve the firearm community to trash one of their own for a stupid comment. One of the reasons that the antigunners win is because no matter how bad someone on “their” side screws up, they are forgiven. On our side though, the person is beaten and thrown out and the community turns their back on them. That is a very short-sighted attitude. All of you should not be so excited and proud that you trashed a pro-gun person. Handgun Control does it all of the time. So congratulations, you and Handgun control have something in common. You ruined a pro-gun guys career.

    1. avatar RIGHT! says:

      Your SIM Dogma fell into your Koolaid.
      I’ll bet you never read the preceding articles or his actual quotes

  28. avatar Jack Larson says:

    I cancelled my digital Recoil and will not subscribe again. Jerry is just the tip of the iceberg at that shallow rag run by libs.

  29. avatar Greg Gadberry says:

    Mr Tsai apparently a self professed “gun enthusiast” should realize one must be a supporter and beleiver in the 2A first and foremost.

    Bye Bye

  30. avatar Laurence Scroggins says:

    Apparently Jerry Tsai underestimated the gun culture and current climate surrounding one of the most cherished and delicate rights that we as American citizens have (or at least most of us have). If he had made these statements 10 years ago, they would have been brushed off and soon forgotten. But he said them during a time when our 2nd Amendment rights have been more fragile than ever before, and then he tried to save his ass by backtracking and making excuses. Hopefully he will learn his lesson and put actions ahead of his words.

  31. avatar twbav8r says:

    I saw Recoil on the rack the other day and thought it looked like a pretty good mag. So I decided to check it out online today and came across the Jerry Tsai controversy. Makes me wonder who the people are behind this mag and what their true intent and thoughts are regarding gun owners and our Second Amdt rights. Not as interested in their mag anymore!

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