Tuesday, February 20, 2007

An Army of Davids, illustrated.

On Friday evening, a gunwriter who was apparently tired of his 42-year career put his word processor in his mouth and pulled the trigger.

Ten years ago, had his statement survived the editorial process and made it into print, we would have seen a handful of cherry-picked letters on the "Letters to the Editor" page of Outdoor life, and things would have pretty much proceeded along at status quo ante. Not now. Not today.

Here's what happens today:

Friday Night: Jim Zumbo, a paid writer of the old-school print and TV media, posts his now-legendary screwup on his new-fangled blog, without benefit of editorial restraint.

Saturday Night: The news breaks on ARFCOM, one of the busiest internet gun boards, with almost 200,000 members.

Sunday AM: Word hits the blogosphere. The head honcho of Zumbo's largest sponsor, Remington CEO Greg Millner, is alerted to the spreading conflagration while on the road in Europe, and posts on Zumbo's site that Remington is "reconsidering" its relationship with Jim.

Sunday PM: Megablog Instapundit (ironically, home of the author of An Army of Davids) and FreeRepublic pick up the story. Millner posts that they are severing their ties with Zumbo and an official presser will be released tomorrow. No equivocation about "our legal department is looking into contracts" like Gerber finally announced on Monday. This is unsurprising: Gerber is a knife company, while Remington is a firearms company. I can guarantee that Millner only needed to say three words into his cell phone to get the ball rolling back in Ilion: Smith. And. Wesson.

Monday AM: Remington's main web page is altered to announce the ash canning of Zumbo. Gun boards and blogs across the 'net respond by enthusiastically announcing their intent to buy Remington products.

...and that's how that works.

78 comments:

phlegmfatale said...

This is a beautiful thing. I thought precisely the same thing as I watched this event unfold - that before the egalitarian advent of the internet, there would have been (YES, the very words I was thinking) cherry-picked letters to the editor published and that would have been the end of it. At last, we have a way to make our voices instantly heard in the marketplace.
Damn skippy!

Unix-Jedi said...

On Friday evening, a gunwriter who was apparently tired of his 42-year career put his word processor in his mouth and pulled the trigger.

In the spirit of The Simpson's Comic Book Guy, allow me to name this the "Best Take Evaah".

elliot said...

Army of Davids? Or electronic mob lynching?

After the torches and pitchforks are packed away, you might ask yourself if destroying a person's life over a casual blog post is really the best use of the Internet.

I don't agree with what he said, but this guy wasn't a "Goliath" and I am vastly uncomfortable with this rushing to silence the apostate...it feels too much like what radical Islamists want to do to anyone who disagrees with them or departs from the true faith.

Tam said...

"I am vastly uncomfortable with this rushing to silence the apostate"

I'm not silencing him, he's as free to speak as I am.

If you don't like what I say, you're free to threaten to boycott the sponsors of my blog, too.

LawDog said...

it feels too much like what radical Islamists want to do to anyone who disagrees with them or departs from the true faith.

I'm sorry ... I must have missed Mr. Zumbo's head being cut off with a bread knife. And the hostage-takings -- how could I have missed those?

No?

You may not feel comfortable with people voicing their First Amendment rights to speak freely; and you may not be comfortable with free-market Darwinism, but if anyone ever told you that freedom isn't messy -- they lied.

This was not a casual blog post. When you have the clout of an editor for a major sporting magazine -- tied together with the cachet of having written about gun-related stuff for 42 years -- then your words have more impact than the same thoughts being expressed by Joe Sixpack.

Particularly as current events have a re-authorization of the Assault Weapons Ban in Congressional Committee -- the very rifles, excuse me -- terrorist rifles -- he shot his word-processor off about just co-inky-dentally being the subject of this ban.

Anonymous said...

Freedom of speech does not mean you may not have to "own up" to that speech

B&N said...

elliot,

Mob lynching it may be, but I'm thinking you are attempting to spread the wrong idea about who is the enemy here. Traitors are the worst of all enemies, and deserve the gallows, so to speak.

There can be no room here for equivocation. We are full scale war with the likes of NGO's, the UN and to a lesser degree, the governments of our own country on this issue. Stand next to the ideal and don't waver. Ever.

We simply must take the initiative and cut out the cancer before it metasticizes in instances such as this. If it means silencing Zumbo the Dumbo, too bad for him.

Sincerely,

theirritablearchitect

elliot said...

Free speech does not mean free from consequence, agreed.

And taking a man's life IS more severe than taking his livelihood... but I don't think either is a noble method of dealing with someone you disagree with.

And I don't want to boycott your sponsors, Tam.

First off, I'm a long time RSS reader of your blog. I find you interesting and entertaining. Secondly, when I disagree with someone my first impulse is for more conversation...not silencing the person I disagree with.

Billy Beck said...

"Secondly, when I disagree with someone my first impulse is for more conversation...not silencing the person I disagree with."

>blink< What the fucking fuck "more" is there to talk about with Zumbo? He made himself completely clear, and there is nothing more to talk about.

And you still have not taken the point, which was made perfectly explicit to you by Tam, that nobody is "silencing" Zumbo. He is just as free as anyone else to put up a blog and sound off.

Why have you ignored this fact?

What's wrong with you?

Standard Mischief said...

elliot, the only one who sponsers Tam is Blogger (AKA Google).

I don't want to see Jim-bo turn into a bitter ghost writer, I want to read from his own hand his new techno-lust for teh evil black rifles. I'm willing to give him another chance.

Gay_Cynic said...

LD hits it fairly well. In a free society, if you say something really offensive, odds are that the other free members of that society will say something back - often rather critical and expressing a lack of amusement with affairs.

Zumbo expressed his opinion, and in so doing injured a great many folks. Zumbo then put forth an apology that, to me, seems ill-written when interpreted in the kindest possible light.

Computer-literate gun-owners, in turn, have and continue to respond by sharing their dismay with Zumbo and his publication directly, and through communications with Zumbo's advertising sponsors.

Free Speech, and more Free Speech in response. And an exemplary instance of TANSTAAFL - exercise your freedoms in a way considered largely unacceptable, and folks may choose not to play with you or your associates anymore.

staghounds said...

Elliot, Maines, and Richards notwithstanding, this is EXACTLY how it is supposed to work. If Zumbo had been even close to right in what he said, there would have been a chorus of "traditionalists" defending his words.

People who say things deserve the reasonable consequences. Not receiving the custom of those upset by the words is ALWAYS a reasonable, foreseeable, and expected consequence. No matter WHAT you do for a living, you're going to be fired if they catch you spitting on the customers.

And let's beware of those who overuse the word "lynching". First, he got his due process- the market saw his heart and decided.

Second, he lost his job. Taco Bell is hiring. Use of the word lynching trivialises genuine atrocity. If you don't think so, spend ten minutes here:

http://www.withoutsanctuary.org/main.html

DirtCrashr said...

My Grandfather went hunting with and shot the black-rifles of his day, cheap surplus actions were all he could afford and he had a M1898 Krag and a M1917 .30-06 - I doubt that Zumbo would have given him the time of day. As demographics and voting power shifts to urban and suburban residents who have more opportunity to hunt each other instead of deer, then more weight is thrown to the Brady's and their evil plans to ban all guns.
Going along with them is fatal.

Justin said...

"Secondly, when I disagree with someone my first impulse is for more conversation...not silencing the person I disagree with."

I'm not particularly interested in attempting to engage in a civil conversation with someone who happily smears me as a terrorist.

Zumbo provided the anti-gun extremists with exactly the kind of copy they wish for- a "gun owner" who agrees with them.

Zumbo got exactly what he deserved.

wqbang said...

You might not like black guns, but they are coming for your deer rifle too.

JOIN OR DIE

elliot said...

None of you know me, although I'm a regular reader of this blog and Lawdog's.

I have legally carried a gun in the past and I'm a fervent believer in the the Second Amendment...as evidenced by many of the posts on my own blog:

http://www.fromwhereisit.org/?p=152

http://www.fromwhereisit.org/?p=994

http://www.fromwhereisit.org/?p=927

http://www.fromwhereisit.org/?p=297


But I'm just as much an absolutist when it comes to free speech.

I've said before that free speech doesn't mean speech free of consequence: http://www.fromwhereisit.org/?p=671

But, to me, the proper response in this situation would have been to post a rebuttal on your own blog. Or write an editorial for a competing publication. Crusading to get him fired and punish him as severely as possible for having the gall to think differently than you violates the spirit (though not the letter) of the First Amendment, it does a disservice to the idea of reasoned debate, and it creates an environment where free speech is less likely to occur in the future.

Kristopher said...

elliot:

No one is silencing ZDumbo.

He can pay for an ad in the NY Times if he wishes.

No one is lynching ZDumbo.

He is not decorating a lamp-post with his lifeless corpse, last time I checked.

Would you try to limit our human right to say what we will, and do business with whom we wish? Don't go there ... that would make you even worse than ZDumbo.

Kristopher said...

Crusading to get him fired and punish him as severely as possible for having the gall to think differently than you violates the spirit (though not the letter) of the First Amendment...

We have a right to say what we will, and do business with whom we will.

As does ZDumbo.

Take your self-censoring PC crap and shove it.

elliot said...

So where's the line?

You guys are absolutists when it comes to gun rights, because of slippery slope arguments, but it sounds like you're pretty flexible about the proper degree of punishment for free speech.

For gun control the spectrum runs like this:

The right to have any type of weapon (including assault rifles) ->Allowing various restrictions on ownership of weapons -> outright banning.

A similar spectrum exists for free speech:

The right to speak without fear -> Various consequences of speaking ranging from being fired to being killed -> complete censorship.

I suspect that most of you would choose the left-most end of the gun control spectrum I described above.

It disappoints me that you aren't willing to even consider doing the same when it comes to free speech.

Tam said...

There should be no legal consequences to free speech.

Absolutely. Period. The end.

I should not be forced to retain an employee or give my patronage to someone whose views I find repugnant.

Absolutely. Period. The end.

I can't possibly make this any clearer.

Anonymous said...

Zumbo has not been lynched.

He has not been arrested.

He has not even had a slap on the wrist.

He is free to log on to blogspot and start a brand new blog tomorrow and pick right up with calling you a terrorist right where he left off.

Heck, he can even publish a book tomorrow called Elliot Is A Terrorist, and you are free to buy it, so as not to endanger his livelihood and to show your support for his freedom of speech. :)

-Tam

3yellowdogs said...

Why is it that openly disagreeing with someone spouting a liberal view is always portrayed as censorship or an abridgement of that person's free speech rights?

All that happened when Zumbo posted his ill-considered and (most likely) deeply held beliefs about those scary "terrorist rifles" is that literally tens of thousands of his reader did what is supposed to happen in a free society - they wrote back to tell him they thought he was wrong.

What's more, they told his publisher and his sponsors that if they continued to support his viewpoint, they'd stop favoring them with their business. Sorry, Eliot, but that's something we're all free to do.

And why was the response so swift and furious? Because as someone in his position - an editor of a major hunting magazine - his viewpoint gave aid and comfort to those who would like nothing more than to take away the right of all of us to own a firearm.

Now Zumbo is free to do what Tam and all of us can do - start his own blog and write whatever he wants. He'll just have to do it without the sponsorship of a magazine or a firearms manufacturer - unless he can find others willing to underwrite his efforts.

Good luck to him with that.

Countertop said...

and I took off from work early yesterday tolook at Remington bolties.

You guys have any in stock??

elliot said...

"I should not be forced to retain an employee or give my patronage to someone whose views I find repugnant."

Agreed.

I never said they didn't have a right to fire him. And I never said you had to buy any publication the guy wrote for.

But your post is titled "An Army of Davids" and the gist of it was that it was a good thing that a bunch of bloggers and forum commentors could use the internet to mobilize and punish this guy for what he said.

My point is that goes beyond your right (and my right) not to pay for his speech to actively trying to punish him for his.

Nuanced conversations like this are nearly impossible on the Internet. It's too easy to misinterpret other people's "tone" or intention.

I've been trying not to insult anyone or disparage their motivations (although I'm sure that didn't come across as clearly as I'd like it to) .

At this point, I'm tired of trying to get you guys to see my point, so I think I'm going to give it a rest.

Kaylee said...

No, we get your point.

Disagreement doesn't mean we don't understand what you're saying.. it just means that most of the folks here - me included - understand *precisely* what you're saying...

.. and think it's wrong.

Welcome to America.
Sometimes we disagree. :)

Paul said...

Elliot said:
"But your post is titled "An Army of Davids" and the gist of it was that it was a good thing that a bunch of bloggers and forum commentors could use the internet to mobilize and punish this guy for what he said."

We didn't punish him for what he said. Remington did. Outdoor Life may. Gerber may. When your employee insults a huge percentage of your customer base you don't respond to their rightous anger by saying "Sorry, folks, free speech."
Lots of other companies sell guns, magazines, and knives; your customers would become their customers.

Look, if a major spoksman for, say, AT&T posted on an AT&T sponsered blog his opnion that 50% of AT&T customers were baby raping bastards, he would get canned. You wouldn't be suprised.

As far as nuanced discussion goes, he didn't say "Gee, those military style rifles, I'm not sure I like them. Lets talk about it." He stated his position strongly and in the most negative terms possible. He didn't want to debate the suitability of EBR's for sport, he wanted to demonize them and, by extension, those who use them.

Censorship isn't the issue. Only governments can impose censorship. If the Fed told Zumbo he couldn't post his opinions, that would be censorship. As others have pointed out, Zumbo is free to start his own blog and rant to his hearts content. What we're seeing here is the free market at work.

elliot said...

"Welcome to America.
Sometimes we disagree. :)"

I'm perfectly OK with us disagreeing...as long as no one tries to get me fired because of it. ;)

(Plus, I bet we disagree less than you think.)

Porta's Cat said...

Take your self-censoring PC crap and shove it.

the "self censoring politcal correctness" is what Zumbo fell victim to, after falling on his own sword.

I don't support his views at all. What he said, and implied, was illogical at best. At best. At worst, it was a whole lot of things.

The entire controversy would have been better served by what "standar mischief" suggests in an earlier comment.

The fact remains that Zumbo still IS a gunwriter with many readers and supporters. He was quite ready to be a convert after getting his knuckles rapped. But the blood was already in the water, and the sharks needed to feed.

So much better had an humbled and educated man gone back and written about what he had learned, albeit the hard way, and helped to educate that population of men and women who beleived just as he did. Those folks who own firearms, but need to be educated on why we need to support one another, even if we don't often understand one another.

Instead, he is a floating corpse and a lot of "hunters and sportsmen" are just as confused and scared of a bunch of folks with "terrorist rifles".

When it becomes politically correct to crucify and ridicule, not because of the desired result, but "for the cause", and people threaten to vote with their pocketbooks (to Remington and Outdoor Life), not for the end result but "for the cause", it won't be long before we find that "divide and conquer" was something that we were doing to ourselves and just blaming it on Zumbo.

I am a bit saddened about this insanity. Not for Zumbo, as hw wrote his own check. But for what "we" could have done with it to promote the RKBA, had we not felt it neccesary to use his head for a football.

Yosemite Sam said...

"My point is that goes beyond your right (and my right) not to pay for his speech to actively trying to punish him for his."

Not to be rude, but what a bunch of bunk. What you are basically saying is that people have a right not to have their feelings hurt. Is this one of those newfangled rights that they want to give us instead of the real ones enshrined in the Constitution.
All the 1st Amendment guarantees is the right to speak freely without the government punishing you.

That's it.

Zumbo had no rights infringed. Just like Mel Gibson, he made an extremely inflammatory statement and many, many people took umbrage and did something about it. He exercised his speech and we exercised ours.
Seriously, why do you think I should do business with any company that would hire a man that thinks I am a terrorist just because I like to shoot a black rifle?

Rustmeister said...

I doubt Remington let him go because of a few blogs raising hell.

More likely an avalanche of calls, e-mails and other forms of communication caused them to cut him off at the knees.

Mine would have been added to that avalanche, but I was internet-free over the holiday weekend.

Now, if we can use this to move the dialogue to hunters vs shooters and how we need to hang together, then it won't be all for nothing.

Porta's Cat said...

Seriously, why do you think I should do business with any company that would hire a man that thinks I am a terrorist just because I like to shoot a black rifle?

All the other stuff aside, do you honestly think that Zumbo sees people shooting AR-15's and equates them to terrorists?


If I ever say "I feel like shit" or "the Texans suck", I hope you are not around to hear it.

Marko said...

Only the government can engage in censorship. Bloggers and private companies cannot by definition censor a person.

The First Amendment guarantees you the right to speak, not the right to an audience.

Yosemite Sam said...

Portia,
"All the other stuff aside, do you honestly think that Zumbo sees people shooting AR-15's and equates them to terrorists?"

How else am I supposed to interpret this statement by Zumbo?

"I'll go so far as to call them "terrorist" rifles."

Who else would shoot a terrorist rifle but a terrorist? Now this may be a bit of hyperbole, but I think it gets across the point in no uncertain terms that Zumbo thinks that black rifles and those who wield them are slime.

Kaylee said...

Yup, and to be honest, if it wasn't for net jitteriness over HR 1022 lately, I'd expect he wouldn't have been hammered as hard.

Which makes me wonder... was the timing on his part bad luck... or bad judgement?

Porta's Cat said...

Who else would shoot a terrorist rifle but a terrorist? Now this may be a bit of hyperbole, but I think it gets across the point in no uncertain terms that Zumbo thinks that black rifles and those who wield them are slime.

sounds like a bit more hyperbole.

Zumbo come off as a pompous ass in his offending blog entry, no doubt.

But escalating his sins to him calling you or me "a terrorist", in all that implies in todays world, is a bit much. He made a very poor choice of words, no doubt. But I think we all recognize that as such, and would tend to NOT make a direct literal interpretation of such, even if we can accuse him of a lot of other things.

"We" missed a chance with Zumbo. a chance to reach his audience. And if you think he has no audience, or no folks who are silently sympathetic to his plight and his opinions, you are wrong. He was "one of us", even if he didn't know it. And the best way to combat ignorance is to educate, not to decapitate. He would have been a great advocate for RKBA to those who honestly don't know what that means to "sportsmen". He might have even been convinced to grow some Ted Nugent hair and sport an AKM.

And those who went and bought Remington products in the misguided sense that Remington was doing something for anything but their own pocketbook are just as misguided. Remington loves the controversy, I am sure. It has generated a lot of sales at the expense of one mediocre gun writer.

3yellowdogs said...

"'We' missed a chance with Zumbo. a chance to reach his audience."

Oh, I'm pretty sure that he reached his audience. Then they turned right around and reached him right back.

Let's hear it for the free market.

Billy Beck said...

"So much better had an humbled and educated man gone back and written about what he had learned,..."

Excuse me, but with over four decades in his vocation, he might have been presumed to know the issue a lot better than he did. Your essential argument here is that he'd been ignorant before he started insinuating that people without a single cell of evil in their bones were "terrorists". Well, you can believe that if you want to. I might even nod my head and buy it; "Yup. The guy's been writing about guns nearly as long as I've been alive, and he's a first-rate waterhead who doesn't have a clue what's really going on in the world."

Sold. Arguendo. Okay?

All it means to me is that it was far past time for him to be summarily relieved of any authority he might have wielded. He didn't know what he was talking about, and now everyone knows, and it's time for him to sit down and shut the fuck up.

You know what, though? I don't buy it. I don't buy his bullshit about, "Ohhh, it was such a hard day and I wasn't thinking straight about being 'divisive'." I think the man said exactly what he thought, right up until the moment when comments at the blog went off the charts, and then the slippery-hipped sonofabitch tried to weezil his way out of it.

You can think what you want. But I'm telling you: in this political climate, he has absolutely nothing of value to offer anyone interested in freedom.

"This ain't no disco
This ain't no foolin' around."


To hell with him.

Kaylee said...

"And those who went and bought Remington products in the misguided sense that Remington was doing something for anything but their own pocketbook are just as misguided. Remington loves the controversy, I am sure. It has generated a lot of sales at the expense of one mediocre gun writer."

umm... duh?

And that's a *good* thing. I *want* them to know where their bread is buttered. Let's see... sell a box or two of hunting rounds to Elmer Hunter a year, or sell loads of .223 to Timmy Tactical and his ammo-eating machine? I know where I'd put my money if I was Remington. :)

But yeah, I get your point. IF he was capable of learning from it, I agree that would have been the best outcome. But given that his "apology" basically amounted to "hunh, I guess you can use these for hunting" as opposed to "the 2A protects the AR at least as much (actually more) than my hunting piece" I'm not optimistic on that point.

Yosemite Sam said...

Porta's Cat,

One thing I would like to know is why is it that the recreational shooters have to try to understand Zumbo's viewpoint? Most of us have no problem with hunters and we don't demonize hunters.
Maybe they could make the attempt to understand us. They treat is like crap, call us terrorists and we are supposed to try harder to educate them? Give me a break.

Michael Bane has patiently tried for years to educate hunters like Zumbo and all he's gotten is shit on for his efforts. Well, Zumbo's blog post was the final straw. We are mad as hell and we are not going to take it anymore.
I want to work with them and fight together against the real enemy, but they have to make an attempt themselves, treat us with some respect and we'll then let bygones be bygones.

Porta's Cat said...

Oh, I'm pretty sure that he reached his audience. Then they turned right around and reached him right back.

hardly. His audience has never been on AR15.com. Nor reading this blog, or most any that has posted on this subject. But I bet Tam sells a lot of firearms to his audience.

Billy Beck, your comment is too long to "copy and paste", so I will just comment back without reference...

It makes no difference what Zumbo thought 3 days ago, or how long he has been in the "gun rag biz" or what he should have known. The more important point is where he could have gone from here. If Micheal Moore would have come out with a "mea culpa, let Nuge take me to the range" , we could have all said even worse things than were with Zumbo. I would hope, instead, that we would support Nuge in taking him to the range and educating him and making him a true advocate. Getting Zumbo fired has accomplished not one good thing in RKBA. It has furthered the debate not one inch. Zumbo could ahve been a great vehicle. Now he is roadkill. If it makes one feel good that they got a kick in, good for them.

Kaylee...

Remington sells a lot more than ammo. And doesn't sell milsurp ammo by the case lot.

Personally, I don't give a rats ass how sincere Zumbo was in his inital reply. I am sure, more than anything, he saw the ship sinking pretty damn quickly. We saw blog entries and comments. He saw those, and answered phone calls and internal emails. I hold him responsible for his comments, but I can only imagine he was in a pure-D shitstorm in his office or home or wherever he is "contacted" at.

And he may have contiuned to hoist himself by his own petard in future writings. No one will know now. But there was one desperate plea to the public to make right on his idiocy. I have never once in my life been an idiot, but should I ever do so, I hope that someone will have enough empathy, if not sympathy, to help me make right once again. He should have had that chance. If not for a sense of what is right for him, certainly for what it might have meant for RKBA.

Porta's Cat said...

I want to work with them and fight together against the real enemy, but they have to make an attempt themselves, treat us with some respect and we'll then let bygones be bygones.

I get a chance from time to time to speak and interact with these folks. People who think nothing of dropping money on names like Blaser for when the "go overseas". Some are people, in terms of RKBA, just like you and I. Others are looking at it, a sport (big game hunting / exotics) like other folks look at golf. A sport, and that is it.

But, by and large, they are intelligent and nice folks. But they don't spend their days reading this blog, or mine. That they "don't understand" does not mean that they cannot or will not.

The Zumbos of this world are who they read, not the Tams or the Porta's Cats.

Again, Zumbo was an idjit who made some idjit remarks. I still hold, however, that we missed an opportunity.

Billy Beck said...

"It makes no difference what Zumbo thought 3 days ago, or how long he has been in the 'gun rag biz' or what he should have known."

Let me tell you something:

I don't know what you do for a living. My own work is pretty specialized: I'm a stage-lighting director and I work on rock shows.

I can tell whether someone has professional standing on deck -- from backline gear to hanging my rig to front-of-house audio, you name it -- at one glance. This is what specialized professionalism is like: you know what you're looking at as soon as you see it. "That guy's got his shit wired." or: "That one's a bloody poseur and you'd better get him out of my sight, right now."

By the time they have forty years in the business (and believe or not, there are people like that in my business), they need to know everything about it -- to include what's known as "continuing education" in a lot of other fields (for example: when digital dimming control came along in the early 90's, a lot of people had a lot of homework to do; and the same thing, only a lot deeper, with the revolution in moving light technology) -- right up to the minute, or I don't give a fuck who they are: they're out of the pool if I get my hands on 'em.

No poseurs allowed.

Jim Zumbo was no average-guy stroller down the afternoon boulevard. His job was to understand exactly what we're talking about.

"Zumbo could ahve been a great vehicle."

Yeah. He could have been before he got on the wrong side of the right principles in this thing, and he should have been. He had his chance: he had over forty years of it on the job. That's enough for anyone to get it.

Repeat for emphasis: to hell with him.

DirtCrashr said...

Rule Number One: ALL guns are kewl AND and loaded.
Two: Never point your gunwriter at another gunowner or at any career you do NOT want to destroy.
Three: Keep your finger off the trigger and away from the Interweb.
Four: Be sure of that thing at which you're aiming, it might be your own behind behind it.

bjbarron said...

I fail to see how this man was systematically oppressed? Did I miss the organized destruction of his life and livelihood by the vast AR-15 conspiracy? Were gnomes in the basement churning out form letters for people to sign and send to his employers? Letter writing campaign anywhere? Phone trees tripped?

Everything happened so fast - there must have been some intelligent design to the push down the slippery slope.

Or did a bunch of individuals simply take umbrage at his remarks and act on their own?

I vote on the latter. Words have consequences as they always have - it's just that the internet lets all of us respond quicker than it used to.

Blame it on the ZumboEffect - we're going to PLAID.

Steve Skubinna said...

Actually bjbarron, I think it just went to eleven.

Bob said...

The good thing that can come of this is the realization that we now know JUST how powerful a tool we have at our hands. Ok we got rid of a mediocre writer, big whoop!
What if each of the people who wrote Zumbo's sponsors were to send an email to their respective Congress critter along the lines of;

Dear Congress creature --------------,
Thank you for your work on behalf of the District you represent, and in which I reside and vote. It has come to my attention that HR 1022 has the purpose of re-instating the AWB. I feel that this is against the letter, spirit, and the intent of the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Your actions on this matter will not be the deciding factor regarding my actions in the next election, however it will weigh heavily in any decision I shall make.
Sincerely yours;

elliot said...

One of your readers came to my blog and left this comment:

"pssst, nobody's reading this crap. stop going to other blogs to post irritating PC lib drivel comments and links to attract clicks back to this site."

I don't need your clicks. And if the genius who wrote this comment had actually read any of the links I left here, they would have realized that I'm about as liberal as Ronald Reagan. (Which was why I left those links in the first place.)

But let's keep attacking people who agree with us 95% of the time because they have the impudence to disagree with us 5% of the time.

Tam said...

"I don't need your clicks."

Elliot,

If those had been my clicks, I'd have signed them. I hope we understand each other that well.

Will said...

Porta's Cat: You seem to doubt what Zumbo actually said. To refresh your memory, and to point out that there is NOTHING ambiguous about what he wrote...

"I call them "assault" rifles, which may upset some people. Excuse me, maybe I'm a traditionalist, but I see no place for these weapons among our hunting fraternity. I'll go so far as to call them "terrorist" rifles. They tell me that some companies are producing assault rifles that are "tackdrivers."
Sorry, folks, in my humble opinion, these things have no place in hunting. We don't need to be lumped into the group of people who terrorize the world with them, which is an obvious concern. I've always been comfortable with the statement that hunters don't use assault rifles. We've always been proud of our "sporting firearms.""

As someone pointed out, when you are tired, you tend not to dissemble. So, as his apology "explained", he was too tired to not speak the truth, as he would have normally. He called us all terrorists. THAT is what got everyone upset. Plus the rest of it.

Will

Ps: Tam, you have a way with words. I like. You and LawDog are must hits for me when I crank up this box o' silicon bits-n-bytes.

Anonymous said...

Are you a Democrat, Republican, or Southerner?

The answer can be found by posing the following question:

You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children. Suddenly, an Islamic Terrorist with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you, screams obscenities, praises Allah, raises the knife, and charges at you. You are carrying a Glock 40 caliber, and you are an expert shot. You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family. What do you do?



Democrat's Answer:

Well, that's not enough information to answer the question!
Does the man look poor or oppressed?
Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack?
Could we run away?
What does my wife think?
What about the kids?
Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand? What does the law say about this situation?
Does the Glock have appropriate safety built into it?
Why am I carrying a loaded gun anyway, and what kind of message does this send to society and to my children?
Is it possible he'd be happy with just killing me?
Does he definitely want to kill me, or would he be content just to wound me?
If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me?
Should I call 9-1-1?
Why is this street so deserted?
We need to raise taxes, have a paint and weed day, and make this happier, healthier street that would discourage such behavior.
This is all so confusing! I need to debate this with some friends for few days and try to come to a consensus.



Republican's Answer:

BANG!



Southerner's Answer:

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!
BANG! Click..... (Sounds of reloading)
BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!
BANG! Click

Daughter:
"Nice grouping, Daddy! Were those the Winchester Silver Tips or Hollow Points?"

Son:
"Can I shoot the next one!??!"

Wife:
"You ain't taking that to the Taxidermist!"

Kevin said...

Phil wrote: "Look, if a major spoksman for, say, AT&T posted on an AT&T sponsered blog his opnion that 50% of AT&T customers were baby raping bastards, he would get canned."

And then, if he'd "apologized" by saying "Wow! I had no idea that there were so many fine incest-practicing people out there! I was wrong!" it wouldn't improve the situation.

Zumbo got what he deserved. Now he gets to see if he can salvage anything out of the wreckage.

Anonymous said...

For those that feel we are being too hard on Zumbo. This is about the Constitution. What if your 1st ammendment rights were being restricted. Would you feel the same way. What makes the second any less than the first. People better wake the hell up or one by one they will be "legally" taken away.

elliot said...

"If those had been my clicks, I'd have signed them. I hope we understand each other that well."

Sorry, Tam. I never thought it was you who left that comment. I know you'd have the guts to slap me upside the head in person.

The Free Patriot said...

Mr. Zumbo's apology boils down to "well, if it can be proven to me that Stoner-type weapons ARE useful in hunting, well then, I guess they're okay."

That does not work for me.

Anonymous said...

Elliot ~

Zumbo suggested that the full power of the state (to imprison and ultimately to kill) should be used to prevent people from using rifles of a certain shape. That's protected speech.

Zumbo's readers suggested that they, themselves, would no longer buy products endorsed by Zumbo. That, too, is protected speech.

And you are condemning the latter, while defending the former?

Amazing.

elliot said...

I'm not privileging either form of speech above the other.

But just because something is protected doesn't make it moral.

Legally, burning a U.S. flag is protected speech, it doesn't mean I have to like it when people do it.

I still think that doing everything you can to destroy a man's carreer and livlihood because of something he wrote in a casual blog post is disproportionate, inappropriate, and (practically speaking) has a chilling effect on free speech.

Was cheering on this man's destruction (and in some cases contributing to it) a legal thing to do?

Of course, it was.

Was it the "right" or Christian thing to do?

I already know what my answer to that is. What's yours?

Kevin said...

elliot:

I'll have a post up this evening on my blog largely on that specific topic. You may find it interesting.

Kristopher said...

Now ... if we can only arrange our voting laws so that politicians who do similar things get un-elected overnight ....

Rescindable votes, maybe?

Will said...

In the early days, you could challenge them to a duel. Can we bring that back, just for politicritters?

Anonymous said...

Funny, I had the same thoughts on why Remingtion reacted the way it did: Smith & Wesson. I bought two boxes of Remington 9mm ammo yesterday to repay them for the loyalty to the 2nd Amendment.

Anonymous said...

Elliot said, "Was it the "right" or Christian thing to do?

I already know what my answer to that is. What's yours?"

Yep it was, in my humble but accurate opinion, the right thing to do. Zumbo, among all the other other errors, used the "ban" word. I can't imagine enough self professed ignorance or even wind to ever allow that word to be considered much less spoken and written by a supporter of our constitution no matter how tired he or she was.

Back when I was an ignorant, tired after a long windy day, kid and I "slipped up" and used the dreaded "F" word, if it was heard, I was given the opportunity to get an education. That opportunity always came in the form of a good ol fashioned ass whipping and then being sent to my room. And yep, they were "right" and yep they, as well as I, are "Christians" and it always communicated their message loud and clear.

Virtually speaking, Zumbo got no less!

Jerry

DirtCrashr said...

He can always move to California to hunt, where his recommendations are pretty much already in effect.

James said...

There seem to be two groups out there. Those who say Zumbo is wrong because you can, in fact, hunt with an AR15, and those who think Zumbo is wrong because he thinks AR15s are terrorist rifles. Of course, he is wrong about both things, but too many people just don't get why he is really wrong.

I'm having a hard time viewing this as the positive thing that it appeared to be a few days ago. Most of the anger about this seems to be from AR15 owners being pissed about him singling out their firearms. I get the impression from most of them that had he chosen something a bit less popular he would still have job.

I'm afraid most of them don't get it any more than Zumbo.

The Freeholder said...

Zumbo put the gun to his head with his first ill-considered post. Even so, he had the opportunity not to pull the trigger. He could have issued a well-written and sincere apology. He would still have been hammered, but he might have saved his career.

Instead, in his second post, he issued what I would charitably call a lame not-quite apology. That was pulling the trigger. At that point, the result was already written. It just took a few days for it to become apparent.

I'm sorry it had to work out this way. I don't think the guy was evil; he was just stupid. But in the end, he brought it all on himself.

I don't have any problem with anyone who blogged on this subject, posted to a forum or emailed Remington, Gerber et al to tell them how unhappy they were with their spokesman.

He exercised his freedom of speech, we exercised ours. That's how these things work. Like someone said, it can be messy.

Anonymous said...

Why are people discussing the 1st? Maybe you should read what it says. The government didn't take any action against him at all. The 1st has nothing to do with people talking to each other. The 1st simply doesn't apply here. Dumbo did attack the 2nd however. Maybe some people need to read what the 2nd says. Simply put all gun laws are unConstitutional. Argue about the wording all you want but anyone can read the writing of the FFs and there is no room to misinterpret what they meant and it has nothing to do with hunting or sporting purposes.

Anonymous said...

I have never and will never own a gun. My maternal grandfather shot game birds until he was 77 and I have eaten the same. I have been quite sympathetic to arguments in favor of the second amendment, in particular to references of gun confiscation in Nazi Germany. However, this incident completely destroys any sympathetic view I have of the gun lobby (e.g. NRA). This kind of behaviour is what I expect of followers of Daily Kos and it is very sad to see it on this side of the aisle.

Anonymous said...

I support your right to own guns. I support it mostly because it increases the odds that you will kill yourself or your children in a gun accident.

And face it, every time a gun nut, or the child of a gun nut, dies, the world becomes a better place.

So please keep buying assault rifles and hollowpoint ammo. And I will keep laughing at your gun and hunting accidents.

Sure, most of you will live. But I'll piss on the rest of your graves.

American Patriot said...

6:12 Anon

I hope you find yourself in a dark alley facing a wolf in human clothing, armed only with your suit of modern liberal smugness.

When I read about the incident in the paper the next day I promise not to laugh, but I might crack a smile.

Jennifer said...

Well said, American Patriot.

Kevin said...

Congratulations on your NRO-lanche!

M. Simon said...

This is more fun than arguing abou Jesus.

Laika's Last Woof said...

He shouldn't lose his job for his admittedly weird opinions about gun control.
He should lose his job for comparing legitimate gun owners to terrorists.
I'm really uncomfortable saying that, because the ugliest quality of the left is that they go apesh*t over this sort of thing, like getting people fired for using words phonetically similar but otherwise unrelated to the "n-word", but in this case Zumbo straight-up compared law-abiding gun owners to terrorists. "Terrorist" is the actual word he used; it's right there in black-and-white for the whole world to see.
I'm not happy about what we're doing to him, but I'd never want to see a single cent of my money go to this person, either.
I take no delight in seeing his career destroyed, yet it pains me to think we gun owners paid him to compare us to terrorists. Let him get his pay from Brady or HCI.

Anonymous said...

Once again, the NRA proves that the only constitutional right they believe in is the right to keep and bear arms. As for Mr. Zumbo's right to free speech, well fuck that, he must be made to pay for his free speech. NRA and swiftboaters.........first cousins.

Kevin said...

Anonymous said...

"Once again, the NRA proves that the only constitutional right they believe in is the right to keep and bear arms. As for Mr. Zumbo's right to free speech, well fuck that, he must be made to pay for his free speech."


Once again, a leftoid doesn't understand what the Bill of Rights (or the Constitution) is there to do - protect citizens from their government, not the stupidity of their own actions.

JoBob said...

Kevin,

Actually Anon's dissembling about the 1st amendment is a classic example of liberal ignorance. The 1st amendment guarantees the individual and collective rights to freedom of speech, expression, assembly, and religion. No where does it guarantee a freedom from criticism, compel other others to accept or endorse unpopular opinions, or immunize the speaker from the consequences of their speech.

What elliot and some others seem to be saying is, they understand the response of those who disagree with Zumbo, they just wish they'd not been so vocal as to cost him an advertiser and possibly his job. They seem to feel we've missed a chance for "dialogue" and "education". What they miss is the simple fact that Zumbo is first and foremost an employee of Outdoor Life, and as such his freedom to speech, while inviolate, can cost him his lively hood.

Let's put it another way, what if Zumbo called for a ban on homosexual marriage and adoption? Would that be an opportune moment to engage in education? Or how about this, what if he called anyone using a semi-automatic rifle a "NIGGER", would that merit further discussion? Or would either of these incidents be grounds for summary dismissal? I'll give you 3 seconds to come the obvious answer...

Freedom of speech is not a freedom from criticism. An employees freedom of speech is not a guarantee against consequences, and it does not trump a commercial entities right to remain commercially viable. If you don't believe me just try it with your boss sometime, see how well it plays out.

B&N said...

"Sure, most of you will live. But I'll piss on the rest of your graves."

Not if I get the drop on you first, Anon, and then, I'll return the favor, before putting you six feet under.

You know what that's called? Self-defense.

Anonymous said...

http://blog.hasanagha.org/images/haft_tir-5_21.jpg

Please see this link that show an Iranian girl like many other girls in Iran and Islamic lands had be harmed by Iranian police because here topcoat were not like some model who Islamic Government had determined by Quran!

Many Iranian People do not like Islam but government Kill and harm them.

قال زهرا بنت رسول الله از جهنم:

خداوند فرمود بواسته دروغی که برخدا بسته ام و خود را بانوی برگزیده خدا درجهان نام نهادم و چادر بسر کردن را بر زنان جهان اجباری کردم و چون به خاطر گناه زهرا بنت رسول و پدرش و خاندانش بر زنان ایران ستم می شود و دختران را کتک می زنند.

خداوند امر کرده زهرای بنت رسول درجهنم کسش باز شده و اهل جهنم و بهشت بر کس او می رینند و زهدان حضرت زهرا پر از گوه شده .
و مکرو و مکرالله


حزب مبارزه با ستم اسلامگرایان (فاکرین حزب الله ) اعلام کرد چون ریشه همه بدبختی های ملت ایران و جهان اسلام است به ازای هر ظلم به هر ایرانی میلیون ها کیر خر و کیر خوک و ...کامنتی به کس و کون آل محمد رسول الله روانه خواهد کرد.

کیر و سنده خوک تو کس حضرت زهرا بنت رسول الله

به حزب ما بپیوندید و کامنت دونی ها را پر از آنچه شایسته آل محمد است کنید.

کسانی که به زبان های خارجه مسلط هستند کامنت دونی های وبلاگ های خارجی را مستفیض فرمایند.

هرکس روزانه در 10 وبلاگ انگلیسی زبان یا عرب زبان آنچه شایسته محمد رسول الله است را بنویسد تا خارجی ها متوجه علاقه ایرانیان به اسلام شوند. اگر فقط 1000 نفر هم از حزب ما استقبال کنند بزودی اکثر سایت های دارای رنکینگ اینترنت پر از ابراز نفرت ایرانیان نسبت به اسلام خواهد شد.

برای خلیج فارس بمب گوگلی درست کردید که چرا دریای فارس را عرب کرده اند فرهنگ عرب حاصل تفکر محمد رسول الله پست تر از شیطان و حیوان را به فرهنگ درخشان 2500 ساله ایرانی برگزیده اید؟ نگرانید که چرا خلیج فارس را عرب نام گذاشته اند ولی ناراحت نیستید که از بیخ عربتان کرده اند؟

ستاد حزب مبارزه با ستم اسلامگرایان.
و نحن الفاکرین الغالبون
We will have all hizbolla women fucked by dogs.
Now God, say you must fucked Mohammad and Quran by send message to all people of world.
This message sent from Iran

Grumpy Old Fart said...

He shouldn't lose his job for his admittedly weird opinions about gun control.
He should lose his job for comparing legitimate gun owners to terrorists.


He should lose his job for verbally pissing on too big a percentage of his own target market. That's how markets work.

If he wants to be paid for his opinions, he can either continuously earn the respect of his customers, every moment of every working day, or he can try to find a way to make it legally mandatory to pay him, regardless of whether he succeeds, or even tries, to earn his customers' respect. In short, if he doesn't want to *earn* his customers money he should have sold health insurance, or been a union boss, or gone into politics, or been a public school teacher.