Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another bullet in the foot, indeed...

So Kevin Baker asked Shooting USA host Jim Scoutten about the possibility of televising Boomershoot. His reply:

I've always thought there are some events that shouldn't get National TV coverage.

When we'd like the public to think of competitive shooting to be like other mainstream sports.

I guess Mr. Scoutten is entitled to his opinion, but it really does seem that he's afflicted with at least a mild case of cranial-rectal inversion, not to mention a dash of myopia to go with it. I remember 20 years ago NASCAR wasn't really a mainstream sport either, but today it's one of the most popular spectator sports in the United States, right up there with NFL football. Something tells me it didn't get that way by those involved with NASCAR taking the attitude that "some events shouldn't get national TV coverage."
What I really didn't expect though, was outright bigotry, further down in the Arfcom thread...
So what, in my judgment, is not acceptable for prime time national TV?
1) Camo worn by any competitor in any match, except active duty military events, reenactor events, or history segments. (Knob Creek fails the test, as does the SOF annual competition.)
2) Wearing any clothing, T-shirts, etc, that carry offensive statements or images, or T-shirts with ripped off sleeves.

It's worth asking what he'd define as "offensive." Mr. Baker himself has pointed out before statements from certain raging moonbats that more or less interpreted the "Celebrate Diversity" t-shirts as saying "let's go out and shoot us some n*ggers and w*tbacks." I don't suppose Mr. Scoutten would go as far, but still I don't think such an attitude helps the cause.
4) Sniper Competition Events that allow participation by civilian teams. There is no way to explain civilian snipers to the public.

He certainly isn't very imaginative, is he? I really don't see something like that as being much different than an athletic competition, as there are many people will tell you that the shooter is every bit as important as the gun itself. And that's just one way to market it off the top of my head. I'm sure there are folks who could think of several other different angles. And it deserves to be asked — How far is it from "there is no way to explain civilian snipers to the public" to "there is no way to explain civilians owning sniper rifles (or rifles accurate out to hundreds of yards) to the public"? Disturbingly not far enough, I would think. After all, most common hunting calibers are accurate out to hundreds of yards right out of the box. And as we all know it's really not much of a stretch for the anti-gunners to cast the common hunting rifle as a "sniper gun." Granted, it's going to take a lot to make a Jim Gilliland-type shot, but then not every shot a sniper takes is going to be from 1,300 yards away either. (And if you'll read that thread, you'll see that SSgt. Gilliland got his start hunting squirrels at 5 years old. But I digress.) I can understand why some folks might not think some televised shooting sports would go over well, and I could have understood Mr. Scoutten saying that sort of thing was not what his audience would go for, but I find his advocacy of keeping some of the shooting sports in the closet more than a little bit offensive. We should be working on making it all acceptable to the public. Ultimately, that's the only way we're going to win.