St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “Why is a nice guy like Dan being boss of a very pro-gun website?”

Dan Zimmerman plays pinball at TTAG central (courtesy The Truth About Guns)

The headline above sits atop the dead tree version of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch profile of TTAG’s main man Dan Zimmerman. After a reader kvetched about the inherent anti-gun bias the Dispatch’s online editor dispatched it in favor of Olivette man the force behind TheTruthAboutGuns.com. I prefer the original. It’s more . . . Zimmermanesque. Either way, it’s clear that the Missouri newspaper—known for its anti-gun views—worked hard to give a fair shake to the Managing Editor of the world’s most popular firearms blog. The article’s a respectful look at Dan’s work for TTAG including his views on gun control (“pretty close to a 2A absolutist”) and a visit to a local gun range (“He is a good shot”). There’s a jarring digression into the Moms Demand Action’s “gun bullying” charge against pro-2A types, but the overall impression is positive. Well, for us. The comments section is filling with the usual anti attacks. Scrooge that I am, I’d appreciate if you could give Dan some love below. ‘Cause he ain’t getting a raise. Merry Christmas, Mr. Zimmerman.

comments

  1. avatar Andrew says:

    Seemed pretty reasonably written… appears to give “fair shake” status.

    Edit:

    “Her organization regularly clashes with them online and on the streets. A commenter on TheTruthAboutGuns.com once posted her home address.”

    This is a practice that we should be chastizing. Somebody did this (posted his address) with the wing-nut professor who called for the deaths of children of NRA members. I asked TTAG to remove it, as it reflected poorly on the rest of us, and they did. Kudos.

    1. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

      actually, let’s call a spade a spade.

      the poster (moi) suggested a counter protest at their registered corporate HQ much like they (MDA) advocated for the NRA and other pro-2A groups. I also suggested a Project Veritas type effort to video tape her or her (wimpy) husband refusing to proudly plant a “no guns here” sign on their lawn (just like Project Veritas did with the NY newspaper who posted gun owner’s addresses and flipped the script on them . . . see link video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt1Zy_ASNyA )

      It is not my (or our) fault that Shannon used her home address to register her corporation and she is the resgistered agent for said corporation . . . .(hey – get a better lawyer, esp using Bloomberg’s friggin’ cash).

      If we cave to this reported inaccuracy, then it makes it appear we are misogynistic or vindictive and Shannon is a poor little victim. Bullshit . . . . call her out . . . she sure as shit wouldn’t hesitate to publish your personal information if the roles were reversed. . . .

      1. avatar Andrew says:

        Dirk, I’m not trying to troll here, but consider the hypothetical: would you be okay if I posted your home address on here?

        1. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

          am I using my home address to run a business? Am I suggesting to my followers to protest in front of a business that is opposed to my views? IF SHANNON CANNOT FIGURE OUT THAT SHE SHOULD HAVE NOT REGISTERED HER FRIGGIN’ HOME ADDRESS WITH THE STATE OF INDIANA AS THE CORPORATE HQ FOR HER BUSINESS, SCREW HER!

          I am a registered agent for several entities. I use the entities address, not my home address. You can easily sign up for a “mail drop” (ie Mailboxes Express or the UPS Store) and have that as a physical address. so yeah, it was completely fair, which is why she has NO DAMN LEGAL STANDING TO OBJECT. and i find it curious about her objection when she opined that it was ok for the NY paper to out the addresses of gun owners who did nothing wrong, despite her protests that her group is looking for “sensible” restrictions . . . .

          as for coming to my house, sure . . . that’s why i have sprinklers . . . .

        2. avatar PhoenixNFA says:

          As you can see below, it’s not her home address they posted, it was her business address. The fact that they are the same address doesn’t change anything.

        3. avatar Andrew says:

          Alright, alright 😉

          You win this one on technicality (she got da stoopid)… but I’ll be back.

          *slinks back under rock*

        4. avatar Jacob says:

          That was a very gentlemanly slink, and don’t think we didn’t notice.

      2. avatar peirsonb says:

        Dirk, you’ve been missed….

      3. avatar Not So 1337 says:

        The video was good Dirk, good to see you back in the comments! Also, you should forget about her dude, shes just stringing you along.

    2. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Her address got posted because someone suggested a protest in front of MDA headquarters like MDA was talking about protesting in front of NRA headquarters. It just so happens that MDA headquarters is Shannon Watts’ home address. The website, the non-profit, everything is registered to her home address.

      1. avatar Andrew says:

        Damnit – that was supposed to read “a very stupid move on the parts of Shannon Watts”

        1. avatar ShaunL says:

          I thought we only let Dirk talk about the “parts of Shannon Watts” around here???

      2. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

        BTW – thanks to Shannon and her org . . . I am up 80% in Ruger stock for the one I year I owned them – I bought right after she showed up on the scene last December . . . . so, yes, my internet Boo has been good for my retirement portfolio. Now, if she would just protest the coal industry . . . .

        1. avatar Steve in MD says:

          I knew I should have bought Ruger. Smith & Wesson has been a disappointment.

        2. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

          I had Ruger and S&W. S&W was up almost 30% before I sold it (after 1 yr). hey – I made $$

        3. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

          You and me both. I’m thinking of using my losses in BTU to offset gains in other positions…

  2. avatar Jan Pierce says:

    Nice.

  3. avatar Matt in FL says:

    I thought it was a nice write up about Dan. My only issue was the “gun bullies” section, where the phrasing made it sound like Robert and/or TTAG have been personally involved in face to face confrontations with MDA.

    1. avatar peirsonb says:

      IF Robert, or any TTAGer, had been involved in a face to face with MDA I can see how that would be construed as bullying.

      My grandpa always warned me: “Never enter a war of wits against an unarmed opponent.”

    2. avatar Rich Grise says:

      The ones with nefarious intent always pre-emptively accuse their opponents of doing exactly what they themselves are doing.

      1. avatar peirsonb says:

        Re: President Obama

        “They’re going to call me a socialist.”

        1. avatar Cliff H says:

          Walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, etc…..

  4. avatar DougieR says:

    As a St. Louisan I’m glad to see St. Louis and Missouri so well represented on TTAG. Both by Dan And occasionally PTMcain. Keep up the good work guys. Missouri is one of the greatest pro-2a states in the nation!!

    1. And two other local “gun guys” Grady Powell and Jared Ogden are presently being featured on Survival Alaska, on Nat Geo.

      St. Louis rules!

      1. avatar DougieR says:

        Indeed! Now if only I could find someone to sponsor me at Arnold gun club:)

  5. avatar Billy J. McNail says:

    Right on Dan!. We N.R.A.members need to get the truth out there
    for all to see, for the “main stream media” has been “gunning” for us
    and it about time for us to stand up for our rights. We get tired of being
    kicked around because of some low life’s action. Thank you for hanging
    in there!
    Regards Billy J. McNail

  6. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Seemed like a good article.
    Kudos Robert and Dan!

  7. avatar Don says:

    Dan, how dare you not be confirmation of maliciously generated anti-2A propaganda about what a “typical gun guy” is?

  8. avatar gs650g says:

    Good to see Dirk back in TTAG.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Seconded!

    2. avatar Bruce L. says:

      Agree!

    3. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      Ditto.

      1. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

        (blushing)

        1. avatar Rich Grise says:

          Dirk, what’s up with that anyway? Did you get too much shaming for suggestive snark or something?

        2. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

          a little bit of this, a little bit of that. . . . lots of overseas calls very late for work to close out deals for the year, sad that the editors of TTAG won’t let me work through my fantasies, stuff like that. Now that it is mid-December, I am hoping for a lot of Shannon sightings . . . . maybe in a city near me. This could be my chance . . . .

  9. avatar 505markf says:

    Much love and appreciation, Dan. Not to get all emotional, but the work you and the other staffers – and the readers and commenters – do on this blog is damned important.

    1. avatar BDub says:

      I’ll second that. Well put, and deserved.

  10. Yes, the MDA portion was an unnecessary pre-Newtown anniversary detour in search of “balance.” And TTAG has never clashed with Shannon or her dozens of like-minded ladies in the streets. But whatever.

    It was, on balance, as fair as can be expected from a big(ger) city daily.

    Oh, and the online version now has its third title: What’s an Olivette man doing running pro-gun website?

    1. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

      snow and cold predicted for tomorrow in STL and the midwest . . . . can’t wait to see if they get more “protestors” than can be counted on two hands.

      1. Yep. Shame, isn’t it?

      2. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

        within the next year, esp with the 2014 elections coming, Shannon is gonna be relagated to hawking cheap Chinese made crap on late night tv and trying to compete with B level famous people on a random reality show . . . (BTW – her husband is a health care exec so maybe we can thank him for the fiasco named ObamaCare?).

        http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-12-12/firearm-sales-up-plus-crime-down-equals-gun-control-dead?campaign_id=yhoo

        1. avatar Ing says:

          Bloomberg Businessweek says gun control is dead.

          It’d make a great headline for an article on TTAG. And it’s a great article, too. Not what I would have expected from a something with Bloomberg’s name on the masthead and guns in the title.

  11. avatar Gregolas says:

    Dan, your work is always interesting and enlightening. you’re a big part of what makes TTAG such a magnet for me.
    Keep up the outstanding work.

  12. avatar dwb says:

    Good piece, well deserved, but it kinda had the flavor of – Holy cow there is a pro-gun guy right here in St Louis, at a Starbucks!

    Not winning the culture war until we are not looked upon as circus freaks.

  13. avatar Leadbelly says:

    It was a pretty fair article. The Post Dispatch does usually stick to the “liberal” playbook pretty closely, but Missouri is a shooter-friendly state, and St. Louis is not bad for a major conurbation. Some good gun shops, some nice indoor ranges, but, like most big cities, it’s hard to find a convenient place to shoot outdoors. The only public ranges are operated by the department of conservation, and enforce strict FUDD friendly rules, with little understanding of the needs of the concealed carry handgun contingent. The best outdoor ranges are private clubs, and the cost is hard to justify if health or other issues keep you from using the facilities a lot.

    I don’t know if it was an attempt at “balance” or what, but there was a screed from a member of Moms Demand Defenseless Victims on the editorial page of the same issue of the Post. I would imagine the Letters To The Editor are going to be pretty lively for the next few days.

    Finally: Hey Dan – we’re neighbors! Where do you shoot when the annual ice age sets in? For those who don’t know, in St. Louis you swelter for four months of the year, are soggy, chilled, or frozen stiff for another four, and have two comfortable months each in spring and fall. I generally go to On Target in Valley Park when the weather turns unfriendly – decent range, safe neighborhood, really nice folks, ten minutes from home. On another note, where’s the dashing action hero I pictured from your writing? You just look like a younger, clean shaven, edition of me!

    1. avatar Rich Grise says:

      “conurbation” – doesn’t that cause hair to grow on the palms of your hands?

      1. avatar Ing says:

        No, it makes you go blind. (If there’s hair on my palms, I can’t see it.)

  14. avatar Frank Masotti says:

    Well I am sure if someone went to the news rages site and posted something positive it would;d never get seen and the person banned. Thats how all those yellow journalists do things when your against their view on life. I have learned more about the 2A fight and real here then all the time before I found this site. If it wasn’t for TTAG I would still be watch national news shows hoping to get some news about firearms, the industry and the 2A fight. I say great job to all the people who make TTAG what it is. Especially the boss man. 🙂

  15. avatar Ralph says:

    From the article: “Dan Zimmerman doesn’t look like a gun guy.”

    Translation: “Dan Zimmerman looks normal, and gun guys don”t look normal.”

    Even in a generally favorable “human interest” article, the hoploturds just can’t help themselves.

    1. avatar 7.62x54r says:

      Everyone knows a gun guy looks like KJW.

      1. avatar peirsonb says:

        Waaaaaay off topic, but you just reminded of one of my favorite old internet jokes….

        The internet, where the men are men, the boys are boys, and the girls are FBI agents.

        Don’t ask why that popped into my head all of a sudden, ’tis a dark and scary place.

      2. avatar Rich Grise says:

        I thought they looked like This Guy.

    2. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      That’s what rankled me about the piece. They go on and on (and on) about how “normal” Dan is.

      And then they have to drop DZ’s and RF’s religion/ethnicity into it, too, as tho that had any bearing on the issue.

      The executive summary of that piece, IMO: “Managing editor of gun blog is not a gap-tooth, corn-squeezin’-swillin’ hillbilly! Film at 11.”

  16. avatar IdahoPete says:

    Dan – good job on the TTAG. I would recommend you have the following statement framed, and hang it on your wall: “Shannon Watts, who started Moms Demand Action, calls Farago and people like him “gun bullies.” Sounds like a badge of honor to me.

    1. avatar scoutino says:

      I never understood this gun bully name calling. Bully to me is someone who forces other people to do (or not to do) something against their will or who wants to take something from them. Sounds familiar, moms? Gun owners just want to be left alone. How’s that bullying?

      1. avatar IdahoPete says:

        You have to remember the approach of leftists and conservatives to things they don’t like. If a conservative/libertarian does not like something (TV show, Brussels sprouts, a book …) he/she does not buy, read, watch, or eat that product. If a leftist doesn’t like something, he/she wants to ban it (for your own good, of course). So if you disagree with the leftist agenda, you are evil. EEEEVIL!

        Does that help?

        1. avatar Rich Grise says:

          That depends on your definition of “conservative.” They might oppose food regulations, but GAWD FORBID you might like to smoke dried wildflowers or look at pictures of naked women making love. Or, HORRORS not worship at the right church!

  17. avatar 7.62x54r says:

    I read the article early this morning. Not too bad. I followed a link that was on my twitter feed from MDA. I follow Dirk’s bestest friend with the same name I use here. Let’s see how long that lasts.

    1. avatar peirsonb says:

      I’ll take the under on “until you post something that disagrees with her”

    2. avatar Cliff H says:

      If (when?) thy block you it certainly won’t be because they have any clue what 7.62x54r means.

  18. avatar MichaelB says:

    Nice focus.

    Biggest problem I see is the first sentence: “Sitting inside a Starbucks, sipping black coffee, joking with the baristas, Dan Zimmerman doesn’t look like a gun guy.”

    That, by far, is the biggest problem gun enthusiasts face. What the hell does a “gun guy” look like? Beard, camo, combat boots? The ignorance of that observation is obvious prejudice, and should rightfully dismiss any anti-argument that follows.

    Based on stereotypes and opinions, this s**t is ridiculous.

    1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      And hey, this isn’t new.

      When it came out at the Silicon Valley company where I used to work in the early 90’s that I a) owned guns and b) shot regularly (including IPSC), one co-worker said:

      “But… you don’t seem like a violent guy!”

      This really pissed me off. So I retorted with:

      “Were you stupid enough to think that guns caused violence?”

      Yea. Sometimes, I don’t suffer fools and my retorts can be rather… short.

    2. avatar Rich Grise says:

      Here’s what a “gun guy” looks like.
      I’m especially proud of this because, albeit I’m currently stuck in the People’s Democratic Republic of Mexifornia, I’m a Minnesotan. I found it kinda cute that one of the citizens in the vid is from the city of Zimmerman, MN. 🙂

  19. avatar Maureen says:

    Thank you Dan for being interviewed for a gun rights article. Please continue the good work. I will become a regular visitor to this web site.

    What I don’t understand is, how anyone can think that criminals will obey a new gun law when criminals don’t obey the current gun laws??

  20. avatar Pete says:

    Merry Christmas Mr. Zimmerman. You are appreciated.

    1. avatar Cliff H says:

      Perhaps Happy Hanuka would be more appropriate?

      At any rate, Dan has done a great job editing what I have submitted before it was posted and I thank him and RF for that and for this great site.

      Happy Holidays.

  21. avatar Allen Ross says:

    Glad to see the article in the Post-Dispatch. That newspaper may be normally anti-gun, but its editors must realize that Missouri in its entirety is vociferously pro-gun and will stay that way. I saw in an adjacent article in the same paper about the budget settlement, and (it) mentions that there are also allowances for Obama’s gun-control legislation. I have been an NRA member since the 70’s and will continue to be. My blessings and felicitations to Mr. Zimmerman, and keep up the good work. If you need anything, I am at:siscosdad@aol.com. Thanks.

    1. avatar Rich Grise says:

      I’d like to see a change in terminology. Instead of “Pro-Gun,” we should call ourselves “Pro-Constitution,” and the antigun nuts should be called “Anti-Constitution” or “Anti-Liberty” or “Pro-Crime” or “Pro-Tyranny” or something.

      In my not so humble opinion, we’re not doing enough to stress the Constitutional nature of the “argument.”

      1. avatar Cliff H says:

        Maybe we should co-opt the “Pro Choice” terminology? As in “I choose to exercise my Second Amendment rights. You can choose to risk self-abortion I you so desire.”

        Also, I have been promoting Pro-2A as a better term than Pro-gun and Anti-2A as better than Anti-gun. It is pretty obvious that these people are not against guns in the hands of a totalitarian state/law enforcement, only against our 2A right to own them.

        1. avatar William Burke says:

          While singing “We Shall Overcome”.

        2. avatar peirsonb says:

          The libs have been known to co-opt terms for their own use when people get fed up with their BS, like the whole liberalprogressive switcheroo. Why can’t we?

    2. avatar 16V says:

      Locals call it the Post-Disgrace for a whole host of reasons, most of which due to the fact they abandoned Pulitzer’s stated ideals long ago. Just like everyone else in the dead tree business. Not that every newspaper guy wasn’t a sensationalist back in the day anyway…

  22. avatar pwrserge says:

    Anybody else notice how the comments section mysteriously disappeared once the antis got their heads handed to them?

    1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      I was wondering why there were no comments. Please fill us in, if you can.

      1. The comments are all there, you have to click on a bar to see them. Maybe your popup blocker is preventing you from seeing them?

  23. avatar William Burke says:

    If Dan Zimmerman is “pretty close to a 2A absolutist”, I’m General George Armstrong Custer.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      I saw this comment before I saw the name of the person that wrote it, and I was sure it was going to be Leonard.

  24. avatar Anonymous says:

    Dan,

    I love you.

  25. avatar John Fritz says:

    So was that picture of Dan taken at the world-renown Le manoir royal de Farago?

    Oh, and Dan and I sport the same hairstyle. So I know he’s a good guy just from that. 😉

  26. avatar Aharon says:

    Who is the cute dog in the hallway watching Dan play pinball?

  27. avatar Rich Grise says:

    “Why is a nice guy like Dan being boss of a very pro-gun website?”

    Because nice guys like the Constitution?

  28. avatar g says:

    Well done, Dan.

    You certainly deserve more space on TTAG than the misadventures of that other Zimmerman guy… ha!

  29. avatar rlc2 says:

    Nice work Dan!

  30. avatar Larry says:

    keep up the great work!!!

  31. avatar BluesMike says:

    I’m surprised that people are calling this a balanced article. I could see assumptions and logical fallacies in almost every sentence starting with the headline. Some of them are subtle but very clear at the same time.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Very balanced, considering the source, is what I believe most are saying.

    2. avatar Raul Ybarra says:

      For this paper, this is impressive. Normally, I’d expect the Post to make the WaPo look fair and balanced.

  32. avatar Raul Ybarra says:

    Awesome! Didn’t realize you were a local boy, Dan! Ever make it to the east side to shoot at Edwardsville Gun Club? The new rifle/pistol range is nice, though it only goes 100 yds.

    Who’d you have to pay off to get such a favorable story out of the P-D? Of course, even a lot of Dems are pro-gun out here; at least outside of the party. Anyway, great interview. The comments weren’t nearly as vicious as I expected, either. Just a few hoplophobic trolls – probably form the RFT… 😉

    Ps- we don’t call the paper the “Dispatch” out here. It’s usually just the “Post” or “Post Disgrace,” or P-D when writing. It used to have a great reputation at one time, but is generally held in contempt these days by anyone not left of Claire-Bear McCaskill.

  33. avatar Tom says:

    How about that? Dan lives maybe 2 minutes away from me. I live in the city right next to his. Cheers neighbor!

  34. avatar Michael says:

    I have only recently discovered TTAG so I am playing catchup here. So far, I have two of Dan’s articles and I feel of all the writers here, he is the weakest on pro 2nd amendment rights. He does seem nice though.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Ah, now I understand the comment in the other post. You’re new here.

      Well, have a look around, the coffee’s fresh.

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