Dick Metcalf Goes Full Retard

Enjoy the fishing, Fredo

Enjoy the fishing, Fredo

Wow.

Dick Metcalf really REALLY doesn’t ever want to work in the gun industry ever again.

Sebastian discusses it here: Dick Metcalf Triples Down

But there is so much deception and so much fail in Dickie-boy’s fuddy-duddy whining that I am going to have to fisk it thoroughly.  A lot of hidden issues reveal themselves.

(more)

Before I begin, let’s review some basic facts about Metcalf.

  • He is of advanced age (and has not proven that he is not senile)
  • He used to teach history at Yale and Cornell (which is a strong indicator of his deeply-held beliefs)
  • He owns a shooting range that Hornady uses for events (so he isn’t holding a cardboard sign at the bottom of a highway exit ramp)
  • His original column grossly misstated the definition of the term “well-regulated” (which an Ivy league history professor who worked in the gun industry cannot claim ignorance about)
  • His original column was planned months in advance, and his editor (Jim “lying skidmark” Bequette saw a draft 6 weeks before the magazine went to print (so this isn’t just about Metcalf anymore)

On to the article he wrote for Politico.  After trying to establish his gunnie credentials, he says:

“…And on Nov. 6, 2013, my 37-year career as a firearms journalist came to an abrupt end.  Why? Because I wrote an 800-word column for Guns & Ammo magazine exploring the distinction between regulation and infringement as it applies to constitutional rights. As discussions of the Second Amendment go, the column was innocuous.”

No, Dick.  You did not “explore the distinctions”.  You knowingly changed the meaning of the phrase “well-regulated” from it’s acknowledged meaning at the time the Bill of Rights was written into something that is simultaneously a modern re-interpretation as well as a weapon which anti-gunners will use to ban guns.  Congrats, Dick, you got both feet of every gun owner with that one bullet.

““Way too many gun owners seem to believe any regulation of the right to keep and bear arms is an infringement,” I wrote. “The fact is, all constitutional rights are regulated, always have been, and need to be.”

Where are some examples of regulations on the First Amendment?  The use of Prior Restraint to prevent journalists from publishing stories that embarrass the government?  Wow, there’s a proud principle to stand on.
As someone who supports a woman’s right to choose while simultaneously thinking that the First Amendment was molested by the Supreme Court to make that the law of the land, I really want to see how Dick can argue that the language of the First Amendment guarantees the right to have an abortion but the language of the Second Amendment doesn’t mean what it says literally.  Is there some invisible asterix at the end of the Second Amendment that you have to be retarded or progressive to see? <shaking my head in disbelief at this old fool’s lame arguments>  Onward.
“Other heresies on my part? I wrote that I personally had no problem with state laws requiring training for those seeking licenses to carry a concealed weapon and that I did not consider training requirements in and of themselves to be an infringement on my rights (though I’d like it to be good training). I mentioned the 16-hour training mandate in Illinois’s recently enacted concealed-carry statute and said that in spite of the time it requires, I much preferred to carry a firearm for defense legally than carry one illegally and risk prison.”
What Dick failed to disclose is that he owns a shooting range in Illinois where such training would be made available for a fee.  If Dick had offered to train everyone who applied for a permit for free, I would give him a pass on this.  But he didn’t make that offer, because, dammit, Metamucil isn’t free!  And Dick Metcalf needs a new pair of orthopedic shoes.
“The backlash from Second Amendment Fundamentalists—and I used to think I was one of them—was immediate. Outraged emails and web posts poured into Guns & Ammo’s website, as well as many independent firearms forums, all demanding my head. Firearms manufacturers received threats of boycotts if they continued to advertise in Guns & Ammo or sponsor TV shows with which I was associated. I was lambasted for my “patently absurd misreading of the Constitution” and my ignorance of what the language of the Second Amendment really meant. The most succinct messages took the form of, “You’re a bad person and I hope you die and go to Hell,” and the eloquent, “Someone should regulate your mouth!””
Several points to make here.  First, notice the loaded term “Second Amendment Fundamentalists”, chosen specifically and deliberately to create a mental association with other negative fundamentalists like Islamic fundamentalists or the fundamentalists that the media will actually talk about and criticize, Christian fundamentalists.  That’s who Dick Metcalf is, people: an Ivy league asshole who thinks gun owners belong on Dick Metcalf’s Fudd plantation.
And, why is someone who uses the First Amendment to express his opinion (and make a living) complaining about other people exercising their First Amendment rights?  It’s almost like he is a hypocrite or something.  No, Dick, I don’t buy your outrage/surprise act.  You knew what you were doing and you knew that you would pay the price for it.  But more about that later…
After saying he was fired, Dick lets slip:
“At the same time, IMO’s vice president/editorial director, Jim Bequette, was removed from his position as editor of Guns & Ammo, where he had assigned and approved the column. He retains his larger role in the company.”
Oho, so one of the perps got away?  And then it gets worse:
“When Jim called to break the news, our conversation was somber. He had approved the column topic months in advance, and I had submitted my draft six weeks before press date. It was edited, reviewed and vetted by the Guns & Ammo editorial staff and publisher before it went to the printer. It was bannered on the top of the magazine’s cover. The column’s title, “Let’s Talk Limits,” was written by an associate editor. (The incendiary word “limits” appeared nowhere in the column itself.) So sending me to the guillotine seemed a bit out of line. I was not really surprised, though, because the company’s silence over the previous few days had already signaled its intention. Jim told me he regretted that he was powerless to prevent it. A sad end to a decades-long relationship. We haven’t spoken since.”

and
“Why did I write it in the first place? Jim and I had discussed the topic when he first gave me the column five months earlier. We had addressed the same subject many times before in a variety of articles and columns for other magazines over the years, and we both felt it was something Guns & Ammo readers should be thinking about.”
Bequette’s original apology mentioned that he was already leaving G&A, so this seems like deliberate timing for a planned provocation.  Jim Bequette is as guilty as Dick Metcalf for this blatant attempt to redefine the Second Amendment in gun-grabber friendly terms.  And yet he still has his job.  Those of you who contacted G&A to complain, I hope you still have the contact info handy.  Bequette needs to go.
And then Dick starts kicking at the people who kept him fed all those years:
“For some commenters, the ax wasn’t enough. “He got off lucky,” wrote one. “Tar, feathers, a fence rail, and a long, bumpy ride out of town would have been a much more appropriate way to effect his exit from the gun enthusiast community!” A more common theme was that anything less than fierce, absolute opposition to any regulation amounted to treason. “Anyone who says ‘I believe in the Second Amendment, but–’ does not believe in the Second Amendment,” one commenter posted. Or, as another wrote: “Compromise is what the Jews tried with Hitler.”The hijacking of our movement by these radical extremists causes me to fear for the future of the right I have spent my adult life fighting to defend.”
One would think that someone who worked in the gun magazine industry for so many decades, who also happened to have taught history at 2 Ivy league universities (not just one…but two! ) would be more cognizant of the history of German gun control and its role in the Holocaust.  Or maybe he is aware of it, but approves.  I can only guess.
And, the fact that the gun world rejects your views of their future Second Amendment rights, Dick,  ought to make you stop and think about what you are saying, instead of lashing out and calling them names.
“Nearly two-thirds of the 109 new state firearms laws enacted in the year following the Newtown shooting actually eased gun restrictions and expanded gun-owners’ rights. During that same period there was no significant federal firearms legislation at all. But when we engage in noisy, extremist rhetoric rejecting all firearms regulation whatsoever, or refuse to acknowledge the plain fact that constitutionally validated regulations and statutes already exist, we risk alienating the American mainstream. And if we lose that mainstream, we will lose this war.”
And here is where Dick tries to use misdirection to make himself seem reasonable.  While he uses a NY Times article to bolster his claim about state-level gun laws that actually passed, he deliberately avoiding mentioning how many state- and federal gun laws were proposed, let alone how those laws would fall on the pro-gun or anti-gun spectrum.  Anyone want to guess the ratio of anti-gun laws that were proposed?  Anyone want to bet that it was 2/3 more restrictive on guns?
And, ad hominem straw-man language about “noisy, extremist rhetoric rejecting all firearms regulation whatsoever” isn’t an accurate summary of the beliefs of any gun owner I have ever met or read online.  I have heard that kind of blanket rejection language from hardcore Libertarians, but not from “gun owners”.  But hey, feel free keep digging that hole Dick.
And as to his claim that gun owners “refuse to acknowledge the plain fact that constitutionally validated regulations and statutes already exist“, well that’s just a lie.  Those laws do exist and we all acknowledge them.  And the ones we had in the early 1980’s were more than adequate for our society.   It’s the endless demand for more! more! more! new gun laws (without any proven need for them, or any verification that they actually work as designed) that gun owners object to.  And here you are, helping the gun-grabbers do their dirty work.  You picked a side, Dick.  Enjoy your new home.
“I’m definitely a gun guy, but I don’t love guns. Does a carpenter love hammers? (OK, maybe he loves his favorite hammer. I know I love my Winchester big-loop Model 94 lever-action rifle.) I do, however, love the firearms community at large. The shooters, hunters and gun owners I’ve met during the past 37 years are as a group the most honorable, upright and common-sense people I’ve known. The same goes for the people who work in the firearms industry and in outdoor journalism. They represent a true cross section of American society, and I’ve always felt honored to count myself among them.”
He finally admits it: Dick Metcalf was never one of us.  We were just a way for him to earn a living when he didn’t get tenure at those Ivy league universities he taught history at.
Notice the glowing language with which he now describes the firearms community: “the most honorable, upright and common-sense people I’ve known. The same goes for the people who work in the firearms industry and in outdoor journalism. They represent a true cross section of American society…”
And yet, he rejects the judgement which those people have applied to his words and deeds.  Cognitive dissonance?  Or just more lies and posturing?
Now it gets fun:
“Since my column ran, I’ve received supportive messages—emails, voice mails, phone calls, even actual letters—from literally thousands of people. They continue to pour in, especially since the New York Times wrote about my termination earlier this month. The number astounds me. For a while it was running more than 100 a day. But only a tiny handful of those people have dared to express their views publicly, and those who did were attacked as vituperatively and unthinkingly as I was.”
He doesn’t provide any evidence for this, he just says it like it’s true.  I doubt that very many plain old citizens contacted Dick.  But I have no doubt that people like Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Mike Bloomberg, Sarah Brady and their mindless dittoheads have been slapping Dick on the back to reward him for carrying their water.
And anyone who is a grown up with functioning eyes & ears has seen people punished for expressing an opinion.  It happens.  We all know it does.  The problem is that Dick Metcalf is trying to pretend that the only people that do it are gun owners.  And that is a lie.
Only the political left has such a vast history of punishing dissenting opinions.  Larry Summers at Harvard.  The CEO of Lululemon.  Judge Bork.  (If you need to google them to know what I am talking about, you really need to read more.)  Sorry Dick.  I feel no sympathy for you.  The free market and the First Amendment have spoken.
“I’ve been told by a former colleague at IMO that just 40 of Guns & Ammo’s 400,000-plus readers actually canceled their subscriptions. That’s less than one one-hundredth of one percent. I can’t verify this figure, but I have no reason to doubt it.

Well, this is an interesting tactic.  The controversy took a few days to build steam.  People discussed the issue and tried to determine if it was a joke or if Dick Metcalf had gone senile, which took some time.  People had to think about their courses of action, and find the contact info to cancel their subscription (which probably doesn’t happen instantaneously).  And for every letter you receive, there are many more people who feel the same but haven’t yet written.  That all takes time.  But Dick was thrown out of the G&A offices in just 3 days.  And if he got fired, why cancel your subscription?
Sorry, Dick.  I do not believe your reasoning here.  Your ouster was not the work of a tiny minority of cranks.  The majority of gun owners rightly view your words & deeds as a dishonest betrayal.  That’s why you are gone.  If you hadn’t been fired for a month, the cancellation number would have been a few orders of magnitude higher.  InterMedia amputated the problem quickly, before the landslide could gather steam.
“The existing body of literature and legal precedent on the Second Amendment is much like the Bible: One can find something to support nearly any agenda. Even the Founders themselves wrote many different things at different times (with commas in different places) about what they meant by a Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Or by “well regulated.” Or by “militia.” I wish more people would actually read those writings.”
You first, Dick.  Show me how the term “well-regulated” referred to laws at the time the Bill of Rights was written.  I have seen what dictionaries from that time have to say on what it meant.  But what are your sources?  Show us.  We all want to know.  If it really is about the number of laws on a certain topic, you should be able to show everyone some examples of it.  If not, you are some combination of ignorant & dishonest.
“While researching existing laws and crime statistics in all 50 states I came to an inescapable conclusion: Gun control had essentially zero effect on reducing crime—for the simple reason that criminals by definition didn’t obey those laws. Mostly, gun control laws created a new class of criminals: ordinary citizens who ran afoul of them. I saw it not as a political statement, just a fact.”
The senility argument is gaining ground.  How could someone who unambiguously states that gun laws don’t stop crime, turn around and advocate for more gun laws?  I suspect this is Dick trying to backpedal while saving face.  It gets worse:
For the record: I believe the Second Amendment means exactly what it says. Just as I believe all other amendments in the Bill of Rights mean exactly what they say. All of them affirm absolute rights. But unlike freedom of speech or freedom of religion or freedom of the press, the Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms is today the focus of an increasingly bitter battle between those of us who believe deeply in that particular right, and those who believe the Second Amendment is an obsolete 18th century artifact that should be curtailed or repealed.”
That sounds great at first glance, but when you examine it closer the flaws become obvious: Dick fundamentally misunderstands the meaning of the phrase “well-regulated”.  Whether it is through ignorance (unlikely, given his education & experience) or earnest political belief (the most likely reason), Dick Metcalf is 100% wrong on the meaning of “well-regulated” at the time the Bill of Rights was written.  And he clearly had no qualms about doing things that would certainly be used by gun-grabbers to pass more gun laws (which Dick admits are useless in stopping crime).  Maybe he is just running his mouth in the hope that he will eventually say something to convince the gun world that he isn’t a stupid Fudd.  If so, it’s going to be a while…
“Both sides believe they have the American mainstream on their side. But when Second Amendment supporters argue it is unconstitutional to bar convicted felons from acquiring guns, the American mainstream stops listening. When Second Amendment supporters argue it is unconstitutional to require any training whatsoever before carrying a concealed firearm in public, the American mainstream stops listening…All Americans want to find ways to keep horrors like Newtown from happening. But Americans need solutions, not political placebos or public relations gestures. And certainly not more hate speech. Not since the Civil War has there been a greater need in this country for reasoned, civil discourse instead of extremist rhetoric. Never has it been more important for our public officials and our corporate leaders to make rational decisions instead of bowing down to the strident voices of a radical few.
Has any gun owner ever claimed that it is unconstitutional for a convicted felon to have a gun?  Have you ever said it, or heard someone make that claim?  I have never heard that argument made, except by loons who more closely identify with the Libertarian movement than with the gun culture (for them, guns are a fringe benefit, not a central cause).  And I am not sure who is making the claims about the lack of need for training, but it isn’t anyone in earshot of me.  And by the way, if you disagree with Dick, you are a member of a tiny minority of radical extremists.
No, this is just Dick Metcalf trying to carve himself out a piece of the middle ground from which to feed the rest of us gun owners to the gun-control crocodile in the hope that it gets full before he is on the menu.  Keep digging, Dick.  I can’t wait for your next insult-filled “justification” article.
Dick Metcalf (and Jim Bequette too): you are dead to me.  I will never buy a product or service you offer, nor that of any company that employs you.  I won’t shake your hand, stop to help you change a flat tire, lend you bus fare or warn you not to step in dogshit.  You both chose a side, and you both can enjoy the anti-gunner’s hospitality for as long as it lasts (which won’t be for long).
But I am not completely heartless.  I feel a little bad that your pal Jim managed to weasel his way into keeping his job while you got flushed like the turd that you are.  You and Jim should get together and hash things out over a bottle of bourbon, maybe invite Zumbo, and Jerry Tsai too.  And then all of you can die in the same fire.  I will be along later to piss on the ashes, since you won’t be on fire by then.
One fire is way better for the environment than 4 separate fires.  Hey, I care!
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