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When USA Today contacted me to write an editorial I asked the Gannet guy why his employer stopped using the term “gun control.” Why’d they adopted the language of the civilian disarmament industry (see what I did there?) and substituted the term “gun safety”? He didn’t miss a beat. “The words ‘gun control’ come with a lot of baggage,” he declared. “So does the term ‘gun safety,'” I countered. “It indicates a clear bias for gun control.” “We are biased,” he admitted. “We’re in favor of it. That’s why we use the term ‘gun safety.'” Bonus points for honesty, I guess. Only USA Today doesn’t restrict their Orwellian language choice to the editorial page. And I didn’t become an OCD gun blogger by leaving well enough alone . . .

“‘Gun safety’ means being safe with a gun,” I said, risking being labelled a pro-pistol pedant. “The people trying to pass new laws are trying to control access to guns. That’s why it’s called ‘gun control.'”

He wouldn’t budge. “We don’t want to give new gun laws a negative slant.”

“Slanting words to suit an agenda is propaganda,” I said. “Are you guys really in the business of propaganda?”

It was a rhetorical question. But there’s no question that Americans agitating for gun control bend words to obfuscate, mischaracterize and mislead the general public about their fervent belief in civilian disarmament.

Check out this lead under‘s Meet two Brooklyn designers fighting for gun reform.

Last month, after 45 U.S. senators struck down gun reform legislation that 90% of Americans supported, two Brooklyn, New York, designers weren’t convinced those lawmakers were representing the people who elected them to their jobs.

“Gun reform”? Guns aren’t bad, deep down, underneath. They just needs to be reformed. Into a peace brick, for example. And this story of anti-gun activism is a perfect example of how gun control advocates try to fly under the radar.

The thing that’s really interesting to us as designers is that we’re not using any of the usual tropes of activism or web language. There are no pictures of guns and we don’t even say that these kids have been killed by guns; you have to click on their names and go to an external site to find out what happened to them.

Thankfully, most of the anti-gunners’ subtlety is lost on low-information voters. But not all of it. Think “assault weapon.” Then think — and say — civilian disarmament. Just because gun rights advocates know the truth about guns doesn’t lessen the importance of telling it like it is. As powerfully as they can.

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  1. He didn’t address your question about propaganda, so he stood pat on half-truths. He knows it’s propaganda, and he got that you know it.

    But “gun reform”? The weasel words are becoming more and more obvious. It’s as if they don’t give a rat’s ass anymore how many people figure them out.

    And the tactic of changing sails each time the wind changes? People are increasingly catching on.

    • Well, the sails have to be changed to stay on one course. Too many politicans get out to sea and just go where wind and wave take them.

      • I’ll bet you’re one of the few who knows to say tack tested of tact. Well met, sir.

      • “Too many politicans get out to sea and just go where wind and wave take them.”

        Yea, too bad they cant suffer a tragic boating accident like I did the day I lost all of my guns. Im sure that any number of Carnival Cruise ships could be arranged under our tax dollars.

        • You as well? I lost all my guns in a small dingy. My fault. I was using an M1A as a oar and even that slipped out of my paws and into Davy Jones clutches.

  2. That picture is correct in one sense: The senator from Montana does not work directly for a child from California. But more broadly, Baucus was working for all citizens when he supported gun rights. Of course, he’s retiring, so soon another senator from Montana will do the same thing, presumably.

    • +1 That’s exactly what I was going to say. As long as my representatives represent my interests, and the interests of their other constituents, I could give a rat’s a** whether people from other districts or states like them. Their job is to represent the people that voted for them.

      Along those same lines, I’m proud of my representative, Mark Pryor, for listening to the people he represents (or covering his a** from getting voted out, but that works too) and voting against control.

      So suck it Bloomberg, and FOAD.

      • Prior’s somewhat a risk… he bears the (D) mark. It’s good that he understands his constituents won’t put up with him belittling them (as Clinton did) as savages who don’t know what’s good for them AND that they’ll let him go in a heartbeat if he gets too far out of line.

        That doesn’t stop the NAGR from singling him out asa high risk Senator when it comes to the 2nd Amendment. (That and their constant request for funds to fight gun control legislation.)

    • The job of a Representative is to do exactly that: represent the will of your constituents … though if you’re a Democrat, that takes back seat to the “party Line.”

      The job of a Senator is not necessarily to represent, but to act by using intelligence, past experience and individual “industry” to modify the individual issue for the good o the country — yet within the parameters of the Majority within his/her state. To do otherwise would deny the principles under which the Senate was concieived.

      The Senate never has, nor was it designed to, pander to the majority mob in any state … but to attempt to incorporate those ideals into federal legislation.It was, unlike the House which is organized Mob Rule, to be the slow moving, deliberative body that should emerge from debate with the correct answer. In essence, Senators work for the Senate … and only panderto the residents of their state by telling them that stuffing up their @$$ is, in reality, good for the entire country.

  3. Most people with half a spine aren’t going to go off the road over hill & dale & on to the land of oz for the wacked out gun grabbers. They are trying to evolve, its obvious its the same old shit different day, Randy

  4. The only really good thing about the slanted national news media–and my former employer, Gannett–is that they are all on their deathbeds and gasping for their final collective breaths. What they say is irrelevant to many people these days and how they say it is done with so much incompetence anyone with a trace of intelligence cannot take them seriously. In terms of incompetence, Gannett, Inc., leads the pack–the company’s newspapers are almost universally derided within the journalistic community.

    “Telling it like it is” is a noble goal. However, it’s virtually impossible to get the message out to the general public anymore through the big news sources. The corporate news media outlets will always give the last word to the anti-gun position. As an example, the recent findings of how gun use in crimes has declined in the USA over the last two decades has been reported a few times but it’s always glossed over with qualifiers at the end of the story about the number of deaths associated with firearms, etc. Every story that shows firearms use in a positive light gets counterbalanced with a “but” at the end, followed by negative reports.

  5. Well, at least the ad is correct about one thing. Baucus DOESN’T work for ANYONE in California. Perhaps the ad should have had DiFi’s name and picture, it would have been accurate on all fronts then.

  6. My idea of “Gun Reform”.
    Number 1. Making a plastic gun on a 3D printer in someone’s garage….real gun reform.

    re·form (r-fôrm)
    v. re·formed, re·form·ing, re·forms
    1. To improve by alteration, correction of error, or removal of defects; put into a better form or condition.
    a. To abolish abuse or malpractice in: reform the government.
    b. To put an end to (a wrong). See Synonyms at correct.
    3. To cause (a person) to give up harmful or immoral practices; persuade to adopt a better way of life.

    • We do need gun reform, as in to reform our gun laws – in the same way that the twenty first amendment constituted a reformation of liquor laws.

  7. It’s interesting, USA Today admits they are very anti gun and yet allows you to write editorials. Any thoughts on their angle?

    Oh, I guess they could be seeking a fair balance, but that’s hard to believe.

    • It’s not that hard. They want the opposition to have a say as well; they disseminate information.

      They are highly imperfect, but not utterly so.

  8. This would be the same Max Baucus that decided to retire recently? Way to spend your propaganda budget, guys.

      • They’re hoping he’ll switch sides because he’s not running for re-election, i.e., it won’t matter if he does not represent the views of his constituents.

  9. I agree we need gun reform.

    Lets start by repealing the Hughes Amendment to the FOPA, then we can move on to National Reciprocity, after that we can let out heart take us to other gun reforms but I am thinking that perhaps completely repealing the NFA would be a good idea.

  10. Here’s a handy hint – whenever something needs to change its name, that means it’s inherently deficient or noxious.

    “Water closet” becomes a noxious term by association with bodily elimination, so it’s replaced with the very classy term, “toilet.” Oops. That didn’t take long. Let’s call it a “bathroom”. That’s nice. Until people start saying “I have to go to the bathroom”, and you know they mean they’re dropping a deuce. So now real estate listings tell you how many “baths.”

    “Global warming” lasts until people notice it’s pretty damn cold lately. So it becomes “climate change”. When there’s lots of hurricanes and tornadoes, that’s proof of “climate change”, and there’s going to be more, except there aren’t, and hurricanes and tornadoes plummet in frequency. So the failed predictions instead become evidence of climate-change “whiplash weather”.

    “Progressives” become “liberals” when people get their fill of nutty Progressivism. After their ideas and policies utterly tarnish the once-noble term “liberal”, they become “progressives” again, because nobody remembers the Progressives.

  11. I couldn’t help but notice that Baucus is white and little Hiram is (was) black. Does that mean that the Brooklyn wingnuts are playing the race card? Wingnuts and gungrabbers would never do that. Would they?

  12. Anyone else getting sick of this 90% of Americans number being spouted by all of the MSM ?

    • At least the 90% number is more realistic than saying that 115% of all voters in one district voted for Obama — including Romney campaign officials.

      It just depends on how stupid they think we are and how much of the S***t sandwich we will swallow whole.

  13. I’ve come to the conclusion that liberals hate the Constitution and why this country was founded the way it was, as they see it as a barrier to what they want done. Case in point, the founding fathers wanted limited federal government, yet liberals want it everywhere. Why do you think a liberal never calls themselves a “Patriot”, and it’s pretty much exclusive (sometimes negatively) to Conservative groups?

    They hate the fact that senators vote the way their constituency wants, you know, as they’re supposed to, and not “for the country”. We need to to a system where the senators are paid for by their states and not the fed.

    • To be a liberal (in this country) is to advocate for the state. Libertarians and to a slightly lesser extent conservatives advocate for the individual. Not that liberals are necessarily evil, just naive. As Gerald Ford said, “A government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take it all away.”

      The Constitution and in particular the Bill of Rights are laws limiting the role of government and enhancing the rights of the individual. This makes it a natural obstacle to a liberal’s plans. Conservatives and libertarians revere the Constitution as a protection from liberals.

      Senators of course used to be elected by state representatives rather than directly by the population. Until the progressive movement came along and they had to pass a constitutional amendment to change that.

  14. They should call it “Gun Law Reform”. That wouldn’t really even be a euphemism. Granted not everyone will be on board with their “reforms”, but at least it’s an accurate description.

  15. Looks like they’re borrowing from the “global warming” play book. Let’s just change the terminology to suit the political winds. The sheeple will fall into lockstep.

  16. I constantly lecture my guns on their need to reform, to control themselves, to be better guns. But they don’t listen. All they want to do is go to the range and make a lot of noise. The older all-steel Colts and S&Ws are a bit more mature, but there’s no talking sense to these new polymer jobs. They just have no respect.

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