Language Matters: “Gun enthusiasts launch initiative bid to repeal gun safety measure”

Washington State

Firearms enthusiasts in Eastern Washington have launched an initiative campaign to repeal Initiative 1639, the measure passed by voters last November that raises the minimum age for purchase of semiautomatic assault rifles from 18 to 21 and imposes a 10-day waiting period.

The opening paragraph and headline of the piece from KomoNews is reporting on the voter initiative to repeal I-1639, the law that pushed Washington into far greater alignment with California were previously they were the most firearm owner friendly of the west coast states.

The measure was so divisive, led by the coastal urbanites, that several counties refused to enforce the restrictive measure. This led to a response by the state AG saying, “enforce or else.”

We stand in support of the Washington citizenry who are looking to remove the onerous restrictions that I-1639 thrust upon them.

But take a look at that headline…

Gun enthusiasts launch initiative bid to repeal gun safety measure

Can you feel it? The passive aggressive judgement of those who look on the folks in Washington wanting to repeal I-1639.

Call me “triggered” but the both ‘Gun Enthusiasts’ and ‘Gun Safety Measure’ indicates the full opinion those reporting on the issue. They support I-1639 and are using language to minimize how seriously readers look at the measure or the ‘enthusiasts’ who are pushing for it.

Let’s face it, ‘enthusiast’ might as well read ‘gun nut’. Gun nut would at least opening convey the opinion instead of padding the language in a guise of objectivity. ‘Enthusiasts’ minimize how seriously you should take what these people have to say. You don’t go see a medical ‘enthusiast’ to treat an illness or injury, that’s just a person who spends to much time on WebMD. If I say ‘airplane enthusiast’ or ‘flying enthusiast’ you probably visualize a guy or girl frequenting airplane museums and with a remote control toy in a park, not a Blackhawk pilot.

Washington State Citizens Seek Repeal of I-1639 Gun Control Law Through Ballot Initiative

Look, what does that headline state? ‘Technically’ the same topic as the other headline but with plenty of information for someone interested to go digging.

The ‘gun enthusiasts’ trying to repeal the ‘gun safety measure’ sounds like an grumpy group of ignorant idiots angry at a ‘common sense’ little rule. It’s just a ‘gun safety measure‘, not a list of new felony and misdemeanor charges that can be leveled against Washington citizens. No need to take a look at the ‘gun safety measure’, I’m sure it’s fine and the ‘enthusiasts’ are overreacting.

Did they talk to Representative Ilhan Omar for language crafting tips?

Now, I’m an opinion writer primarily. I see something, look at something, or try something. Using my pool of knowledge I then give my honest opinion, trying my best to give good information and highlight biases that you, the readers, should account for to properly salt my words and form a better educated opinion. My perpetual love of ACOGs and enjoyment of bullpups are biases. The fact I love the M16A4 pretty much as it was is a bias. My formative education in this space from reading online and being an Infantry Marine are all biases.

But I do my level best to not ‘lead’ you to defacto sharing my opinion. This KomoNews report is trying to do just that, apparently.

Have any casual reader, someone not tuned into the measure at hand, simply read the headline, chuckle, and say “oh, those crazy ‘gun enthusiasts’ are at it again.” and dismissing the concerns Washington citizens are addressing, as serious infringements on civil rights in the state, as nothing more than fluffed up much ado about nothing.

Keith Finch
Keith is the former Editor-in-Chief of GAT Marketing Agency, Inc. He got told there was a mountain of other things that needed doing, so he does those now and writes here when he can. A USMC Infantry Veteran and Small Arms and Artillery Technician, Keith covers the evolving training and technology from across the shooting industry. Teaching since 2009, he covers local concealed carry courses, intermediate and advanced rifle courses, handgun, red dot handgun, bullpups, AKs, and home defense courses for civilians, military client requests, and law enforcement client requests.