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Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary Alters Definition of “Assault Rifle” to Include Semi-Automatic Rifles

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Published on: May 2, 2018

Socialists are clever, I’ll give them that.  They’re not smart, just clever.  They take over a culture by altering the language.  They changed “adultery” to “affair,” “sodomy” to “gay,” “lie” to “half truth,” and “murder” to “abortion” just to name a few. And now they have apparently successfully gotten Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary to alter the definition of “assault rifle” to not just list actual military weapons, but also to include your garden variety semi-automatic AR or AK style rifle that are in the hands of current American citizens.

The entry for “assault rifle,” reads as of March 31, 2018:

noun: any of various intermediate-range, magazine-fed military rifles (such as the AK-47) that can be set for automatic or semiautomatic fire; also a rifle that resembles a military assault rifle but is designed to allow only semiautomatic fire

To understand how the definition has been altered, take a look at the saved definition from June 13, 2016.

noun:  any of various automatic or semiautomatic rifles with large capacity magazines designed for military use

Of course, the terminology is not new.  We’ve been accustomed to the Socialists manipulating the term “assault weapon” for a couple of decades now.

Defining your terms is important as this is where you either win or lose the battle.

TRENDING ON SONS OF LIBERTY MEDIA

Bre Payton at The Federalist writes:

“Assault weapon” and “assault rifles” are malleable terms often used in public discourse to scare people. After all, all guns are designed to “assault” something. The usual proper use of this term is to describe fully automatic machine-gun-style weapons, which in the United States have been banned from civilian use for years. Notice that the Merriam-Webster change stretches this definition to include anything that looks like such a gun regardless of whether it shoots like one.

Yet media and politicians often use this term inaccurately, as doing so furthers their desire of getting Americans to support gun-control policies. As Sean Davis pointed out on our pages last year, when the United States had a federal “assault weapons” ban, lawmakers defined the term cosmetically instead of by function and, contra Merriam-Webster, had nothing to do with a military-esque design (whatever that means):

The 1994 assault weapons law banned semi-automatic rifles only if they had any two of the following five features in addition to a detachable magazine: a collapsible stock, a pistol grip, a bayonet mount, a flash suppressor, or a grenade launcher.

That’s it. Not one of those cosmetic features has anything whatsoever to do with how or what a gun fires. Note that under the 1994 law, the mere existence of a bayonet lug, not even the bayonet itself, somehow turned a garden-variety rifle into a bloodthirsty killing machine. Guns with fixed stocks? Very safe. But guns where a stock has more than one position? Obviously they’re murder factories.

And things haven’t changed since that time.  In fact, they’ve gotten worse.  Take for instance Senator Dianne Feinstein’s proposed “assault weapons ban” that was proposed shortly after Sandy Hook.

Feinstein’s alleged “assault weapons” bill determined to ban the sale, transfer, importation, or manufacturing of:

  • 120 specifically-named firearms
  • Certain other semiautomatic rifles, handguns, shotguns that can accept a detachable magazine and have one military characteristic
  • Semiautomatic rifles and handguns with a fixed magazine that can accept more than 10 rounds
  • Strengthens the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban and various state bans by:
  • Moving from a 2-characteristic test to a 1-characteristic test
  • Eliminating the easy-to-remove bayonet mounts and flash suppressors from the characteristics test
  • Banning firearms with “thumbhole stocks” and “bullet buttons” to address attempts to “work around” prior bans
  • Bans large-capacity ammunition feeding devices capable of accepting more than 10 rounds.

Yep, it included many of your favorite Glocks, Sig Sauers and other handguns!

Words have meaning.  Just like “assault rifle” was specifically defined according to the grade of the weapon and its function, so too is the Second Amendment’s clear command that the right of the people to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed.”

However, the long and skinny of all of this is no matter what you call it, whether an assault weapon, a handgun, a semi-automatic rifle or a full-auto machine gun (which has not been banned from civilian use; people can still obtain those today if they want to pay through the nose for one), all of those are protected under the Second Amendment.  Every. Single. One. Of. Them.

The American people have simply forgotten why the Second Amendment was put into place.

The Second Amendment was written so we would have weapons of war in our hands to secure a free state, period. 

The right to keep and bear arms is non-negotiable.  It is a right, not a privilege that government should even be talking about with regards to legislation that restricts or regulates.  Why?  Because no authority has been given to government to restrict that right when it comes to law-abiding citizens and I’ll even go so far as to say that includes background checks, and why do I say that?  Because in our country a person is innocent until proven guilty.  The concept of background checks presumes someone is guilty and must prove their innocence in order to be able to purchase a gun to keep and bear.

It’s time we start shutting the gun confiscation debate down by saying that no one has any legitimate right under our Constitution to speak about banning or restricting the keeping and bearing of arms of law-abiding Americans.

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