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Gunwriters Know Everything – Just Ask Them!

by James Tarr   |  April 4th, 2012 5

The Media Day at the Range event held annually at the SHOT Show is also a great place to hear lots of "Facts" about firearms

I just returned from an event at Smith & Wesson where they showed a group of us gunwriters a cool new pistol that is top secret until April 12th.  We all signed non-disclosure agreements, so if I talk about it before then I have to cut my tongue out and feed it to my dog—but check back here on that date, you won’t regret it.


One fact I was reminded of in force this past week was that gunwriters have the tendency to confuse their opinion with fact.  This seems to be doubly true of those scribes who also do firearms training.  Sitting around the dinner table talking with these men—and one woman—I had a number of enjoyable conversations, and learned a lot of new things.  I also “learned” Gen4 Glocks are great, carry guns shouldn’t ever have trigger jobs, and 1911s suck.  Hmmmm, really?


These statements were offered as indisputable facts, and when I inquired as to the reasoning behind these ideas I was provided with more opinions which I didn’t agree with any more than I did the conclusions.  I was well into adulthood before I realized that some people, even many “experts”, sometimes just don’t know what the hell they’re talking about.  Even more common are people who unknowingly come to a conclusion based on emotion, and then use selective logic and facts to back up that conclusion.  This is a hard lesson to learn, and one of the signs of becoming an adult—questioning authority.


Highly trained medical doctors commit malpractice all the time, and trust me, you don’t have to get an advanced degree to become a gunwriter.  Many gunwriters and training gurus don’t just think their opinions are fact, they feel they ought to be the basis for a new religion.  Just because somebody tells you something, or writes about a topic in a national magazine, doesn’t necessarily make it true.  That goes for me as well, although I try to express my opinions as such.


Before you see a movie, get surgery, buy a house, a car, or a gun, get a second opinion.

  • Jim

    Good stuff, James. Opinions are like… we'll you know the rest of that phrase. <G>

    Jim Scoutten

  • Richard Venola

    Your Tarrness: Please offer your infallible opinion on the purchase and wear of loose-flowing tropical shirts.

    Richard Venola

    • James Tarr

      Ladies and Gentlemen, Guns & Ammo's Richard Venola occasionally suffers from shirt envy.

      As to the Purchase of, in my current state of less than ideal cash flow I find myself shopping for tropical shirts in economically-priced venues such as Wal-Mart, but they do have a good selection. However, most of those shirts are Rayon or some other sort of 100% synthetic because they are brighter. Those synthetics are usually too light, and will wrap right around your hand when you try to sweep your shirt out of the way to draw your gun.

      As to the proper wear of said tropical shirts, I prefer to quote the philosoper Homer Simpson, who said, "Only gay guys and big fat party animals wear Hawaiian shirts," and I know what side of the line you are on, Richard.

  • Fred

    I like tropical shirts, if I wear one will I look like Magnum PI?

  • Fellow gun scribe

    Not unless you grow a foot taller, a mustache, and a voice an octave lower…..

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