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By now you’ve probably heard that no one hunts (or needs to bring down a deer/coyote/hog) with a so-called “assault weapon.” And there’s no tradition of doing so in these United States. We know this because the White House press secretary told us so. For some reason, though, the People of the Gun begged to differ with Josh Earnest’s informed opinion and have sent us pics – actual photographic evidence! – of themselves and some of their pals who have, in fact, put meat on the table using Stoner (or Kalashnikov) inspired long guns. We know…you’re probably as shocked as we are . . .

To document these black swan events, we’ve created an album of them on our Facebook page, so go check ’em out for yourself. If you’d like to contribute your photographic evidence, just email them to thetruthaboutguns@gmail.com and we’ll add them to the stack.

Here are a few more of them just to prove we’re not making the whole thing up . . .

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63 Responses to As a Matter of Fact, Americans DO Hunt With ARs

  1. Can someone please send this to the Pa Game Commision and the PA state legislature? It sure looks like fun…

    • And then CC it to Ohio. Deer hunting with no restrictions on rifles(straight wall cartridge only atm) please.

      • strait wall only? so lots of .45-70 (and derivatives) i guess. Do the evil bottle-necked cartridges travel to fast or something?

        • No, too far – at least that was the thinking at the time, when the more popular bottle-necked cartridges were .30-06, .300 Savage, etc. that definitely did have a leg up on older cartridges when it came to effective range. That was the method by which flat-land states tried to limit the possibility of an errant shot hitting some farmer’s house a few pastures over.

  2. We all know it’s about how a firearm looks, not what it does. House and AR or AK in a fine wood with a hunting scope and the people like Puppet Earnest are at a loss. Put chrome valve covers on your car and a noisy exhaust and it’s a race car, same difference. He has the advantage of having the microphone to the world and lies his ass off. An ignorant person who works against the Constitution which provides the opportunity for him to enjoy the lofty position he holds. Not too respectful or smart IMO.

    • Put any kind of optic on it and suddenly it’s a “high-powered sniper rifle that shoots down airplanes 10 miles away!!!!11”

      • Looks like a heavily modified SKS – but I’m not super knowledgeable on the SKS pattern rifle. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t an SKS often thrown in with AKs on the scary “assault weapon” group?

      • Even some of us Brits find it wryly amusing that most legislators and anti-gunners would soil their underwear in panic at the sight of a scary black “assault gun” AR-15, while a Ruger Mini-14 would be much less scary. Both are semi-automatic 5.56mm rifles firing from thirty-round magazines (okay, lots of options, simplifying here) and equally dangerous if misused, but because one is in a wooden stock it’s a polite, decent sporting weapon while the horrible black plastic ‘assault gun’ is a machine-gun that fires depleted uranium baby-seeking bullets and can only be used by criminals for wicked purposes (bear in mind that, especially in the lunatic Left-wing fringe of the UK who – like their US fellow-travellers- are few in number but disproportionately vocal, ‘criminal’ is congruent with ‘military’ and so anyone in Service uniform is assumed to breakfast on raw infants)

        I kid not, back in the days when Northern Ireland was bad enough that police needed semi-automatic rifles to hand, they started with M1 carbines and when those wore out they switched to Mini-14s; wood stocks and civilianish looks were seen as important PR that we weren’t going full military on the locals (apart from the watchtowers and the Army patrols).

        There’s a view from analysts over here that the .223 Remington began life as a deer cartridge and, like using 00 buckshot from shotguns, if it’s good for deer it’s a pragmatic choice for shooting at enemy soldiers. (Body armour changes things but that’s a different issue) If true – be interested in opinions – doesn’t that make the AR-15 and derivatives an excellent deer rifle?

        And the most important point of all – if you’re using a weapon that’s fit for purpose, in a manner that doesn’t endanger others, *who cares*? Whether you use your scary black AR-15 to hunt deer, perforate tin cans, drill tightly-grouped holes in cardboard targets, defend your home and family, or all of the above, it’s *your rifle* to do with as you see fit within the law. You can also screw up, leave wounded game dying slowly, hurt or kill bystanders, or go postal with a Remington 700 – a high-capacity semi-automatic is a bit better for mass mayhem (see the recent Tunisia shootings) but the number of AR owners who go, or see others use their weapons to go, Crazy Eddie is extremely small compared to the vast numbers owned by folk who never do anything insane with their weapons at all.

        The UK has, repeatedly, panicked and knee-jerked and “ban this sick filth NOW!”. Firearm crime, and crime in general, has been generally dropping in the last two decades – doesn’t that prove gun control works? What spoils the correlation is that the US has generally resisted that temptation, has made some moves in the opposite direction, and has seen a broadly similar fall in crime even in states like Florida with ‘shall issue’ and ‘stand your ground’ despite predictions of mayhem, violence and the entire state turning into Sadr City overnight.

        Or, for the tl/dr version – if someone does something illegal with a firearm, prosecute them for what they did. I don’t like the ‘thoughtcrime’ argument that an ‘assault weapon’ is somehow inherently wicked for being black and having a pistol grip. If – for instance – someone who learned to shoot an M-16 in the US military wants a familiar weapon so their skills carry over, why not? My own choice would be a FN-FAL because I learned musketry on an L1A1 Self Loading Rifle, for instance, and I know it, trust it, and have a track record of handling it safely and with adequate skill. It’s black and scary with a pistol grip, flash hider, bayonet lugs and all sorts of other ‘scary’ features – but who, who actually understands firearms, actually cares? It’s still ‘just’ a 7.62mm x 51mm semi-automatic. Put it in a sporty wood stock instead of the black plastic furniture, grind off the bayonet lug and take off the flash hider and it’s no less lethal even if it looks more like a ‘sporting’ weapon (after all, would you rather be shot with a M14 or a FN-FAL? Is there actually a difference?)

        • FYI:Quality ARs can be purchased cheaper than Mini-14s. Just sayin’… Price is important.

      • Yup. I’m the guy with the Mule deer and mine is a DPMS .308, not that the White House knows or gives a s–t about the difference 🙂

  3. First, the Fish and Game bureaucrats rule that nobody can shoot deer with anything less than .24 caliber, which by definition excludes .223. Then the gungrabbers say that nobody needs an AR because they’re not used for hunting deer.

    What a mindjob.

    • Been my experience that that varies from state to state. The use of .22 caliber rounds for hunting.

      • The Firing Line has a good thread and list as of 2008. Google “states where deer hunting is legal with .223” and it will come up.

    • Who said you have to hunt with a pea shooter? Almost every company that makes an AR15 makes an AR10 chambered in 308. I have seen AR10 rifles chambered in 308 shoot less than one MOA at 1,000 yards. If I am close to a tree to brace my AR10 I can shoot the ticks off a deer. The deer are somewhat frightened but they appreciate the tick removal. Hell, some people have AR10 rifles chambered in 50BMG. There is a company that makes an AR10 chambered in 30/06.

    • Who said you have to hunt with a pea shooter?(Thanks Johnny) I have AR’s chambered in 7.62 x 39, 6.5 Grendel & .50 Beowulf.

    • Yeah, that’s the case here in Washington. Can’t hunt with any big game with a rifle chambered in .223, but I can cross the border into Idaho and Montana and use that same rifle to drop a mule deer or antelope dead in its tracks with one round of 75gr TMK.

      I will be hunting around Montana more in coming years now that MIL lives over there, and an AR will be the primary rifle of choice.

      The “less than .24 cal” rule was more about stopping people hunting big game with .22LR, but it would’ve been more effective to specify rimfire vs. centerfire in those regs. I don’t know if there is any movement to change the regs here.

  4. Read a story long ago about how surplus SKS rifles were popular in some parts of Texas among recent Vietnamese immigrants because they were–wait for it–cheap and a good way to put meat on the table. I wish I had gotten one back when they were $139 or so at the LGS, would make a nice hog-hunter I think.

        • I actually told him I’ve seen worse examples going for ten times what he payed for it, and he just responded that it’s not going anywhere. He loves that rifle, and wants me to inherit it. Also, we have a standing deal, I have a post war M44, and he doesn’t get to shoot it until I fire that SKS.

  5. “..you’re probably as shocked as we are .”

    Do they really have to go out and kill the animals like that? Can’t they just order that kind of thing on-line?

    /…..Both sarcasm AND a crazy friend actually said that to me once.

    • It’s almost not funny to joke about, some of these people literally think meat comes from the grocery store.

    • These are the same folks that complain about water usage by farmers in California. “Those evil farmers are using too much water.” They want them cut off then wonder why their fruit and veges are either triple the price or unavailable…

      • Cali farmers should be able to use all the water they want for growing kale. Otherwise all the metrosexuals would die of constipation or something.

  6. One of the Amish communities I used to live by preferred ARs. I don’t even own one, and I love ARs (sorry, six years of A2s tilts your bias. The M16 has nothing on the 14, though.) My point is, that is a subculture obsessed with tradition, and they know how to pick the best tool for the job, and they decided to buy “assault” rifles for a reason.

  7. I took my first deer, two coyotes, and a couple hogs with my old beater Hungarian SKS, only modified with a cheap scout scope and an aftermarket five round magazine, but quick question, my father always told me that a t least in OK, semi auto hunting rifle mag limits have to be 5 rounds or less. Is this true, at least for OK or other states, or just a good ol’ boy urban legend?

    • OK publishes its hunting regs. I was only able to find this: “Clips or magazines of all .22 caliber centerfire firearms may not be capable of holding more than seven rounds of ammunition.”

      You should check further, using the web or by calling the Wildlife Department. Or both!

  8. Can’t get to my pics from here, but I have hunted Javelina with a 5.56 AR many times. Works just peachy (neck forward). I know, TPIWWOP. 😉

    Not to mention many kinds of western desert varmints.

  9. I’ve never hunted with an AR-15, so forgive for asking this question, but… Is it ethical to kill a deer with a .223/5.56? It doesn’t seem like you could get a quick, clean kill on an animal that large with that round. I wouldn’t hesitate to use it on coyotes or other small game, but I don’t think I’d choose it for deer or other medium to large sized game unless I didn’t have any other choice. It seems like the 7.62×39 would be a better round for hunting, but still wouldn’t be my go to round. Except maybe for hogs, but I don’t hog hunt.

    • .223 hits harder than many of the muzzleloaders, handguns and straight-walled cartridge calibers that are legal here (Ohio). It hits a lot harder than a bow. Just don’t try for overly long shots and have good shot placement and you’ll be fine. People have taken deer with .357 magnum rifles and handguns and .45 colt rifles and handguns very regularly. .223 blows those away.

    • but… Is it ethical to kill a deer with a .223/5.56? Here in Indiana we are limited to essentially to deer slugs, bow and arrows, and handgun cartridges. Some types of handgun cartridges legal for deer hunting include 357 Magnum, 41 Magnum, 44 Magnum, 44 Special, 45 Colt, 45 Long Colt, 45 Winchester Magnum, 35 Remington and 357 Herrett. So why is hunting a deer with a 5.56 rifle caliber less ethical than the weak handgun rounds fired from a 4″ barrel? In Indiana I can hunt squirrel with a .300 WIN MAG, go figure?

    • Not sure where you are from, but in Texas, most “Hill Counry” Central Texas deer average about 110 lbs. So they are not big animals. They might be 12″ thick across the ribs. I have taken alot of deer over the last 35+ years and from .223 to 30.06 and they don’t know which one you hit them with. It is lights out. I do make sure I use 62 gr soft points and my shot are all within 100 yds. So for me the .223 is less punishing on me and at the same time I am confident of a clean kill.

  10. Doesn’t matter. White house said no one hunts with an assault rifle, that’s a new executive order. They’re only broadcasting the future. Prepare, they’re coming

  11. Great stuff! I’ll have to forward our photos to my buddy Josh (with the POF AR-10) and my son Tristin (with the Rem 700 LTR). I’m the one with the stainless 300 BLK AR with the Bushnell ERS FDE 3.5-21x scope. Unfortunately I didn’t get a very big buck last year.

  12. This is a pointless counter argument. To the gun grabber, they could not care less about this. They would just respond, “well, you only NEED a bolt action to hunt with.” It’s also feeding right back into their “sporting purposes” bullshit by even talking about hunting. It side tracks from the real issue that the 2nd Amendment is about potential militia members being able to arm/equip/train themselves to US military infantry standards.

    The black rifle culture is where this whole issue will be decided.

  13. That’s a pretty nice Bubba-SKS in that last picture, though shame he had to take the bayonet and front sight post off in order to use that scope and that tapco t6 stock.

    • Its a YUGO SKS, bought new decades ago, never issued, packed with cosmoline in brown wax paper. When I got that rifle, they were barley $150, and no one cared what you did to them, there would be more. I shortened the BBL to 17″, lost useless FWD weight and actually improved the accuracy of the rifle in doing so. The Tapco stock is far lighter that the bridge plank wood stock it was built with. The Scout Mount holds a 2-7 x 32 HiLux steady and fast. I worked the trigger as well- as much as one can on an SKS. Still a mile long creepy pull, but at least it doesn’t feel like its full of sand now. Updated firing pin with return spring to hedge my bets on an accidental firing. 125gn HPs placed well on a hog under 100 YDS are DRT. Ive lost count how many hogs Ive taken with that rifle. Its fed many people for a long time.

  14. No shit!

    I hunted deer with an HK-91 from fall 1984 through fall 2011. Then I switched to an Armalite AR-10A4 because of its superior accuracy.

    Only fools and rich men carry furniture in the wet drippy woods.

  15. Dan Z,
    Dollars to doughnuts? What a phrase. I think the press secretary’s intention was that for sport, these kind of weapons seem incongruous. I understand they are putting food on the table, which is noble, however it seems not sportingly nor an appropriate way to feed one’s family. Walmart sells meat cheaper than bullets. To glorify this only hurts your cause.

    • Janet, you are a moron. Move on. You will never understand or in your self absorbed walmart world ever care.

    • Janet, bullets may be cheaper than what you eat, but I care about what I put on my table and into my children’s bellies. Find me some organic, lean, meat untouched by chemicals or super dosed with estrogen, steroids, or antibiotics The meat I bring home is all that and free range to boot. Every bit of meat we don’t’ buy is less to be produced in an animal mill. Saving a creature from an industrial farm life, that’s fairly sporting of us hunting folks. On cost, calculate the cost of the Rifle, the bullets, and the hunting license and all my meat processing equipment and you won’t even get close to what it cost to put that kind of quality food on the table. Yea, It take awhile to break even (about 2 seasons),.. but then you’re in the gravy as the say.

      Let’s even take a cheaper route. Dirt cheap serviceable hunting rifle and adequate “bullets” while paying for processing, one actually breaks even faster. I’ll bet you dollars to doughnuts you can’t do better for less.

      Incongruous? What kind of rifle is out of place in the wilderness? Do you know any history of poor folks in the US? The most affordable rifles have always been military rifle sold to civilians. Those were tools to put meat on the table for families that wouldn’t have otherwise had any. Well, at least that was the case for my dirt poor depression era southern folks. My grandfather (born in 1902) had a military surplus rifle that I was told he purchased for $6. He feed a heap of kids with that rifle. That rifle was more likely to have actually killed men than anything in the wilderness today. Incongruous? pssh,.. hunting with military weapons is as traditional as hunting with those manufactured for the singular purpose of hunting. Our modern sporting rifles only look like military weapons. Actual military rifles are the same. They do things that ours won’t. Do your research before you start dog piling.

      • Incredibly well said, and I concur 100%. Thanks for taking the time to spell that out for the uninformed.

    • So what site picked up on this article? There are a few of these “not sporting” comments here from mystery posters.

    • Marksmanship is a sport. Many of my guns have killed anything but paper. Some of my guns have been used to kill wild game. Some to kill vermin. The only gun I’ve ever used to kill a man was issued to me by the government.

    • Well.. when my heavy POS Rem 742 (a classic style hunting semi) gave up the ghost, I built a 6.5 Grendel AR to replace it. It’s smaller, lighter, more accurate, recoils less, and I carry the same 5 rds I did with the 742. 6.5g (power wise) is less gun that the 30-06 I was using before. My girls can shoot the rifle very well. Now I can pass on the tradition without knocking my kids on their ass like when I started hunting at 10 years old with the same Rem 742 mentioned. On top of all that, I can repair the rifle without dumping out hundreds of dollars to a gunsmith. Maybe you can explain to me what the difference is. I don’t play games.

    • Yep, it actually is a better option than a bolt-action rifle in some cases. My AR weighs less and is handier than either my bolt-action .270 or .243, is just as accurate as either. Guess which one I would rather hunt with nowadays?

  16. Almost every time I go into MY property, I carry my AR. Light and handy, it serves as an excellent companion.

    Does it put meat on the table? Sure does.

    Do I carry it merely for its hunting utility? Sure don’t. As it turns out, the poachers (game and timber), druggies, and other threats do not seem to have read the cultural memo that all is well.

  17. This is all still a red herring. Hunting has nothing to do with the argument. It’s a distraction from the point.

  18. I am all for normalizing everyone with ARs I don’t post pictures of myself on line with dead animals though..sorry. Too many anti gun/hunting relatives and friends.

    Lots of us are hunting hogs, deer and especially varmints with AR style rifles. Light, accurate, generally inexpensive and most importantly handy in the woods. My new personal favorite is my 300 BLK Noveske rifle paired with Sierra Varminter 110g handloads. It is accurate, flat shooting, no recoil, and devastating as a hunting round.

  19. Some of the guns I’ve personally used to hunt deer in California. (using five round magazines in the semi-autos). All of these with iron sights except for the PSL which has a good stock scope with tritium reticules. The only one I failed to take a deer with was the Enfield which has trouble maintaining a zero.

    Semi-Auto:
    M1 Garand .30-06 (Kinda heavy, but good in open country for long distance.)
    MAS 49/56 .308 (One of the best brush carbines ever.)
    PSL 7.62 x 54R (Romanian “Dragunov”)
    STG-58 FAL .308
    BAR .30-06 (The sporting type.)

    Bolt Action:
    1903 Springfield .30-06
    Krag – .30-40
    K98 Mauser 8mm Mauser
    Mosin-Nagant 7.62 x 54R
    K31 Schimdt-Rubin 7.5 x 55 Swiss
    Enfield No.5 Mk 1. .303 Enfield (Didn’t really work out.)
    M96 Swedish Mauser 6.5 x 55 (I’d like to try and make a FAL in this round.)

    And my favorite.
    1960’s pre-safety Marlin 336C .30-30 with highly defined walnut stock.

  20. Oh, but your missing the point.

    According to THEM, you don’t NEED to hunt with them.

    Didn’t you KNOW that?

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