The Allure Of The AR-15

BY Herschel Smith
8 months ago

Abigail Hauslohner at The Washington Post:

Fabian Rodriguez was cradling his new rifle when he stopped at one of the gun-show booths to purchase a $5 chicken fajita MRE.

The “Meal Ready to Eat” is a mainstay for troops on combat missions. But Rodriguez, a 28-year-old San Antonio native who sells auto paint for a living, wasn’t going anywhere that would require one.

Fabian Rodriguez, 28, tries out his new AR-15 rifle at a shooting range in San Antonio.

“I like them,” he said. “Well, I like watching reviews of them. That’s something people do online, like, open them up and do taste tests.”

Rodriguez, who wears his handlebar mustache slicked into points and never leaves home without his cowboy boots, had come to the gun show to buy his first AR-15, a variant model of the M-16 and M-4 assault rifles that are used by the military, and currently the most popular rifle on the market.

[ … ]

The expanse of tables before him display AR-15s, AK-47s and every other sort of assault-style rifle; hefty shotguns and sleek, modern hunting rifles; handguns that range from high caliber Smith & Wessons to tiny Derringer guns that fit in the palm of your hand.

He makes his way past boxes of ammunition, T-shirts that say things like “CNN IS FAKE NEWS,” and a $1,900 Magnum Desert Eagle that he immediately recognizes as the gun Angelina Jolie carried in the movie “Tomb Raider.” “That specific one she used in the movie was 50-caliber, which is humongous,” he says.

He finds a strap for his AR, and a quick-disconnect for the strap. He inquires about left-handed adjustments and revisits the table where yesterday he purchased an AR-15 magazine engraved with the “Don’t tread on me” snake logo, just like the one pictured on the worn leather wallet that he is now again removing from his pocket.

“Can I still get that discount if I bought one yesterday?” he asks the vendor.

“Yeah, the two for $35?”

Rodriguez nods.

“I remember you,” the vendor adds, as Rodriguez hands him the cash for another magazine, this one engraved with the words, “You can’t protect the First without the Second.

[ … ]

The NSSF, an association of gun manufacturers and sellers — which several years ago started calling ARs “modern sporting rifles” — likes to hype the idea of the AR’s versatility as the key to its appeal: a gun for hunting, home security and whatever else you might need.

David Chipman, who used to carry an AR-15 for his job as a special agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, thinks there’s more to it.

“I would compare it to the same reason Americans might want a muscle car or enjoy a muscle car: It’s American-made, it has outsized power,” said Chipman, who left ATF after a 25-year career and now serves as a senior policy adviser to the gun-control advocacy group Giffords.

There’s a sort of “X-Game-type sensibility” to it, he said, a fixture of “American culture that I see most often with men.”

Rodriguez encounters plenty of skeptics in addition to his mother who ask him why anyone would need so many guns, particularly a semiautomatic rifle like an AR-15 — a gun that can fire 45 high-velocity rounds per minute, bullets that travel so fast that their shock waves mimic an explosion as they enter a body.

His honest answer: He doesn’t need them.

He wants them because he enjoys them, and the Constitution gives him the right to have them.

“I know I don’t need it,” he says of the AR-15. “The revolver, statistically speaking, is more than enough to defend myself.”

But it’s frustrating when people ask him this, because that’s not the point.

The point is that the Second Amendment protects his right to bear arms, whatever and however many he wants, as a guard against tyranny.

Hmm … there’s nothing comparable to getting an “authority” like a former ATF agent to say that there’s some mystique about the gun, alluring, tempting, tantalizing, beckoning people who otherwise wouldn’t want them to come, come, come to me, dear soul, and shoot me.  I can make your life complete.

Good God, what claptrap.  It’s as if Abigail has gone on a quest to hunt the snark, to find the great unwashed dirt people who eat beef, wear cowboy boots and hats, work an hourly job, get their hands dirty, run tooling equipment, run horses and cattle, drive trucks, and so on the list could go.  She’s heard that such people exist, but never actually met one inside the beltway.

Ooo … an expanse of tables with guns and ammo, tee shirts, and stupid bumper stickers.  And the allure and beckon of guns and money exchanging hands.  It’s as if there is actually private enterprise going on in America.

Give me a call, honey.  I can take you up to where they make corn liquor and don’t take kindly to FedGov sticking their nose around.  And you can shoot an AR-15 too.  Wouldn’t you enjoy that?  It’s the next logical step for you.

Seriously, gun owners know the first rule of gun club, which is that you don’t talk about gun club to the MSM.  That’s why gun data on ownership is so crappy.  Most gun owners aren’t going to talk, or if they do, they aren’t going to tell the truth.  Every now and then a MSM writer finds a gullible dunce like this to follow around.

Remember folks, the first rule of gun club is that you don’t talk about gun club to the MSM.  You only talk about gun club to make other gun owners among the potential recruits.


Comments

  1. On April 9, 2018 at 10:12 pm, MN Steel said:

    Someone’s been breaking the first rule of Gun Club…

    Seems there’s a lot more members, and they’re pissed and buying lots of ammo and components for some reason…

  2. On April 10, 2018 at 4:33 am, Francis W. Porretto said:

    “[the] AR-15 [is] a variant model of the M-16 and M-4 assault rifles that are used by the military…”

    From what I know of those guns’ developmental history, it’s the other way around: The M-16 was developed from the AR-15 design (and degraded in the process).

  3. On April 10, 2018 at 6:08 am, Fred said:

    -His honest answer: He doesn’t need them.-
    -He wants them because he enjoys them, and the Constitution gives him the right to have them.-

    He’s a Fudd. On the other hand neither of these statements are quoted directly so the author may just be making stuff up. Because obviously we do need them and, for the millionth time, the constitution gives us nothing.

  4. On April 10, 2018 at 8:54 am, Pat Hines said:

    I attempted to read the whole essay, but couldn’t make beyond the first third or so.

    I’ve found making the argument of utility to be a losing one. That’s when you tell the communists how many lives are saved by armed citizens.

    Communists don’t care about that, they are only interested in non-governmental, unilateral disarmament in order to have government achieve the monopoly of force. In fact, communists want at least one third to one half of the total population on the North American continent to die.

    They want all whites dead.

    Therefore, they want all whites and many non-whites disarmed.

    I’ve researched the state legislators in South Carolina who have either proposed or co-sponsored gun confiscation bills in the legislature. Two things became apparent. First, nearly all were located in college towns or districts, second, nearly all were black. All were communists.

  5. On April 10, 2018 at 5:18 pm, James said:

    Silly Fabian Rodriguez. Everyone knows that Lara Croft’s carry guns were HK USP match, not Desert Eagles.

    Where was WashPo’s fact checking on that one? /just kidding.

  6. On April 10, 2018 at 6:56 pm, jim said:

    She was carrying in a country where freedom to self defend has been destroyed, and where possession of such toys would put you away…

  7. On April 10, 2018 at 11:20 pm, Georgiaboy61 said:

    @ Francis Porettto

    Re:”“[the] AR-15 [is] a variant model of the M-16 and M-4 assault rifles that are used by the military…”

    “From what I know of those guns’ developmental history, it’s the other way around: The M-16 was developed from the AR-15 design (and degraded in the process).”

    In the mid-1950s, Eugene Stoner and his team at Armalite – then a division of Fairchild Aircraft – designed and produced the AR10, chambered in 7.62×51 NATO, since that cartridge had just been standardized upon as the standard for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in 1953.

    The AR10 was not adopted as the new service rifle of the U.S. armed forces, thanks to some bad luck, poor decision-making and corruption/cronyism within the U.S. Army ordnance corps.

    The basic AR10 design was well thought-out and sound, but over the strident objections of Eugene Stoner, his chief engineer, the head of Armalite, George Sullivan, sent an untested prototype with an experimental hybrid aluminum-steel barrel to the U.S. Army to compete in the trials. The barrel failed catastrophically, and the rifle didn’t complete the trials process. Armalite immediately sent a new test platform with a standard barrel, but the damage had been done – and their design wasn’t picked.

    A number of nations eventually adopted the AR10, including the Sudan, Portugal, and a handful of other countries. Portuguese army paratroopers used Dutch-manufactured AR10s, during the Angolan civil war and assorted other conflicts in Africa during the 1960s and 1970s. The rifles were extremely popular and sought-after, even over FALs and G3s.

    It was only after the AR10 had more or less faded from view that AR15 came into play. A number of high-ranking officers in the military – upon seeing the success of the Soviet-designed AKM/AK47 assault rifle in Vietnam – sought a weapon to fill the niche between high-powered rifles like the M-14 and light, fast-firing weapons like the M-1 Carbine. A U.S. counterpart to the AK47 and the WWII-era StG44/MP44, in other words.

    In 1957, General Willard G. Wyman, CO of U.S. Continental Army Command (CONARC) had submitted a request for a .223-caliber select-fire rifle of around six pounds in weight when loaded with a full twenty-round magazine. The 5.56 round had to be capable of penetrating a standard U.S. helmet at 500 yards, while remaining supersonic and also matching or exceeding the wounding capability of the .30-caliber M-1 Carbine. This request, which originally didn’t go anywhere – was dusted off and revived. Armalite developed the AR15 based upon this original request.

    In 1960, U.S.A.F. General Curtis LeMay had a chance to fire one of the new AR15s and came away impressed. When he was promoted to Air Force Chief of Staff in summer, 1961, he requested 80,000 of the rifles, intending to arm U.S.A.F. security personnel with them. However, the request was denied by Secretary of Defense McNamara. In 1961-1962, AR15s were sent to SE Asia for limited use with U.S. Army Special Forces and other units; reports from these units praised the new weapon as being effective and popular with the troops.

    In January, 1963, McNamara ordered that production of the M-14 be halted, thus effectively clearing the way for the AR15/M-16 to be adopted as the official service rifle of the U.S. armed forces. In November of that year, he approved an order for 83,000 of the rifles for the Army and an additional 19,000 for the Air Force.

    The rifle officially entered production in 1964. These were manufactured by Colt Manufacturing, which had purchased the rights to the design some years previously from Armalite. Colt was to remain the primary vendor for the design for decades to come, well into the new millennium.

    A note about nomenclature: Armalite’s original design was termed the AR-15. When the rifle was accepted into U.S. military service, it was designated as the M-16. Subsequent carbine (short-barreled) versions of the platform were designed as M-4 carbines. There were also other variants as well. Being military-issue weapons, these were capable of select-fire.

    When AR-15s began showing up as a civilian-legal, semi-automatic design in the 1960s and 1970s, they were termed AR15s in part to distinguish them from military-pattern M-16s and M-4s. By this time, Armalite had nothing to do with the design since Colt owned the rights – but their original nomenclature was retained.

  8. On April 12, 2018 at 11:39 am, Pat Hines said:

    My first contact with an AR was in Air Force basic training, in 1967. While I don’t remember the nomenclature on the lower, I do remember it not having forward assist. I’m not sure if they were select fire or not.

  9. On April 15, 2018 at 7:28 pm, Jean said:

    If you happen to be hunting in ” badlands” and have to deal with wild pigs ( boars for the cold war vets ) or packs of feral discarded dogs that have been dumped by the city folks that have decided the new flavor the day dog is whatever, you don’t want to have bolt action 30.06, the AR is great companion rifle rifle. Light weight, easy to reload, makes for a good day.

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You are currently reading "The Allure Of The AR-15", entry #18985 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) AR-15s,Firearms,Guns,Media and was published April 9th, 2018 by Herschel Smith.

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