We've been getting a lot of messages about the Great Recoil Calamity of 2012. We were going to sit this one out, with all the fur flying and the tumult, the mobs with pitchforks and torches, the bloody waters around the feeding frenzy...
What do we think? Jerry Tsai, the editor, anti-2ND Amendment? BURN THE WITCH! Put him on a scale with a duck, that's what we say.
Except, wait...do we know that he's against the 2ND Amendment? 'Cuz, see, the way we figure it, there's a difference between misunderstanding the 2ND Amendment and opposing it. Right?
BLUF: Everybody needs to take a deep damn breath here. Let's be brutally honest. This guy committed the gun magazine equivalent of publishing a pro-pedophile piece in a Boy Scout magazine. At first glance it might indeed seem he went full retard - there can be no doubt that his dick is extremely sore from where he stomped on it, but do we want the whole magazine to go because of a mistake? Granted it's a big mistake, but aren't we throwing the baby out with the nasty bathwater here?
We need to ensure there is no ambiguity anywhere in our community regarding the Second Amendment. Things are and will continue to be too precarious for us to unnecessarily eat our own. The damage has been done and could potentially affect the entire industry. Let's organize a counterattack right now - but let's do it without the torches and howling mobs thirsty for blood. Some individuals' responses were measured, articulate and intelligent (those of Jim Fuller and Rob Pincus spring to mind). Others were more extreme. Many were utterly ridiculous.
Recoil is a well-made magazine with great production value. It's aesthetically pleasing, it's had some great content and it has tremendous reach for such a young magazine. It could be one hell of a way for all of us who enjoy the 'gun culture' to entertain and EDUCATE an entire generation of young shooters. Let's face it, most of the people coming of age now to get a CCW give exactly zero shits about anything from Harris Publications or Guns and Ammo and fewer can be bothered to join the NRA (sad, but true). How do we inform them?
With magazines like Recoil, as long as we use its power for good, not evil.
The problem, obviously, is the editor seems to lack the ability explain things to our satisfaction. Why not fix the problem instead of burning the whole thing down? Hell, let's salvage this thing and use it as a way to make sure no one can possibly misunderstand such seemingly esoteric (grunts: esoteric) ideas as the notion that A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Know what? Jerry Tsai isn't anti-2nd Amendment. The notion is ludicrous, and we have to wonder if everyone going into berserkergang mode over this actually read the whole issue. Page 51, in an article entitled NFA Basics: "While many people think it is impossible for civilians to own such a gun [M60 Machine Gun], they are mistaken. Dependent on the location, the transfer of machine guns to civilians is legal, but can be expensive."
Page54: "Rather than owning them personally, some folks use trusts or corporations to acqure NFA items. This is permitted by the NFA, and has the benefit of mitigating the need for a CLEO signature...The criminal penalties for violating the NFA are quite severe, so do it right!"
The magazine gives advice on obtaining an NFA stamp. It talks about the background of the NFA. Hell, it discusses how a private individual might legally obtain 40 mike-mike. On page 73, question 4 in the article Sound Suppressors: "...contrary to popular belief, silencers are and always have been legal to own under federal law. Getting one takes just two simple forms..." It then goes on to explain the whys and wherefores of silencer purchase and ownership.
Those aren't articles someone who is against the 2ND Amendment would approve as the editor - but someone who doesn't understand it might.
What do we do? We educate, not vilify (grunts: vilify). Should Mr. Tsai have known better? Yes, but the mistake has been made, the damage done (hopefully there won't be any additional fallout from the Brady types) and the subsequent 'explanation-apologies' sure didn't make things any better. Let's don't piss away the opportunity this presents. In fact, since there's no do-overs, let's ruthlessly exploit it to our advantage.
Listen, there are thousands of readers out there who love(d) Recoil the way fat girls love chocolate and grunts love stippers. Let's take this opportunity - as in Issue 5 and subsequent articles - to make sure they all understand what 2A is really about, and to ensure nothing like this happens again.
Should Tsai step down? Dunno. Probably? He has certainly demonstrated some poor judgment and professional immaturity but hell, who hasn't? Can any of you reading this say you've never fucked up so royally it boggled the mind? We think he should step aside. Stay on board the publication in some kind of contributing/creative director capacity, his photography and layout are awesome, but maybe bring in a different editor with a more suitable background. Or, leave him in place but bring on some kind of advisory panel who review everything, like an 'advisory editorial staff' of SMEs or something similar.
That's our take on it. Feel free to disagree, as unwise as that might be. Anyway, you all know damn well how we feel about the Second Amendment (and single dancing moms).
Mad Duo Clear!
About the Authors: Richard “Swingin’ Dick” Kilgore and Jake “Slim” Call are the HMFICs here at Breach-Bang-Clear, with the mission of passing along the information provided to them by approximately twelve (sometimes fourteen if they're not drinking) abject, hapless minions. They are the most door-kickingest, trigger-pullingest action figures in the tactically operational tactical operator world. Subscribe to them and stay informed about TTPs, new kit, and latest in what's stoopid (and occasionally inspiring) in the military and modern society or check them out on Facebook.