Monday, February 26, 2007

NRA turns on one of their own

For daring to say bringing military-style assault rifles to shoot prairie dogs was unnecessary. His tv show is now in limbo:

SEATTLE -- Modern hunters rarely become more famous than Jim Zumbo. A mustachioed, barrel-chested outdoors entrepreneur who lives in a log cabin near Yellowstone National Park, he has spent much of his life writing for prominent outdoors magazines, delivering lectures across the country and starring in cable TV shows about big-game hunting in the West.

Zumbo's fame, however, has turned to black-bordered infamy within America's gun culture -- and his multimedia success has come undone. It all happened in the past week, after he publicly criticized the use of military-style assault rifles by hunters, especially those gunning for prairie dogs.

"Excuse me, maybe I'm a traditionalist, but I see no place for these weapons among our hunting fraternity," Zumbo wrote in his blog on the Outdoor Life Web site. The Feb. 16 posting has since been taken down. "As hunters, we don't need to be lumped into the group of people who terrorize the world with them. . . . I'll go so far as to call them 'terrorist' rifles."

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Uh oh, Jim. Shouldn'ta said that...


Bryan said...

The thought that anyone would use an M-16 or AK-47 to hunt varmits is absurd. They aren't that effective on the battlefield, except in limited circumstances. They aren't accuracy weapons.

No real hunter would own one because they aren't effective tools. If you want to "punch paper" a .22 is cheaper and more accurate.

If you want self protection, a shotgun with buckshot is more effective.

I've fired them all, and there isn't an assault rifle I would want if I had access to a pump shotgun.

ellroon said...

Good to know, Bryan. I've handled only a .22 rifle as I recall.

The immediate hysterical reaction from the NRA the minute anyone anywhere says anything about ownership or behavior with weaponry is astonishing. I understand the need for weapons, I just don't understand the mouth-frothing response.

Unknown said...

Bryan, M-16s and AK-47s are selective fire rifles. I agree that in full auto or burst mode they would not make a great praire dog weapon. In single shot mode the AR is very accurate. The semi-automatic versions are used at Camp Perry, Ohio for the National Match, out to 600 yards. I'm looking at a target I shot with mine (I don't hunt, just target shoot). 100 yards prone, 8/10 rounds in the 10 ring, (Coke can bottom area)1 eight and one nine. I am a recreational shooter, NOT an expert. The AR IS a ".22 cal". Bullet is .224" diameter.

In some situations I agree with the use of the shotgun. In others the AR would be preferable.

FWIW, the NRA was late to the fray in le affair Zumbo. The initial reaction was from internet sites over the Presidents Day weekend while the NRA was off doing other things. Their response was a couple of days later.

The "mouth-frothing response" was as a result of Zumbo calling for the ban of the semi-auto AR-AK clones. From Sarah Brady this would not have raised an eyebrow in the shooting community. From "one of our own" it did.

Eric Watkins said...

As callgood said, the AR15 is actually a VERY accurate weapon. The .223 Rem cartridge itself was developed from a the .222, specifically designed as a "varmint" cartridge. Though it should be noted the the AR platform comes in a bewildering variety of calibers, for .22LR to .50.

Hoplophobes seem to be "outraged" that they are used to dust prairie dogs, but what else would one use other than a highly accurate rifle that fires a small cartridge? Would you suggest something in .30-06?

I can't help but feel that these objections from the ignorant are largely because the guns in question "look" scary.