Let Me Play You the Song of My People

Over at Quora one of the contributors is Chris Knox, son of Neal Knox, gunwriter and one of the original NRA “Cincinnati Revolution” members.  Chris is pretty active at Quora, but I had to share this one answer to the question What are the Basic Types of Gun Owner? (reproduced with permission)

Legal Gun Owner Types

The Tacticool (ooda orbus fictus)
Recognizable by his 5.11 tactical pants and shirt, and his IDPA “shoot me first” vest. Peppers his vocabulary with terms from Tacti-tard Trainer Buzzword Bingo.  His warrior mindset is completely wrapped up in his OODA loop. From his Oakley shades to his desert boots, this sheepdog is a genuine tier-one operator. A cynic might wonder if he might not move faster if he were to shed about fifty pounds.  See also Mall Ninja.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Real Tactical (ooda orbus veritus)
What the Tacticool wishes he were. Has a part-time job as a weapons instructor for Special Forces. Nobody knows what he actually does for a living. Disappears for weeks at a time. Close reading of Foreignpolicy.com may reveal that a third-world government has fallen during that time.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0 (at least none that were unsanctioned)
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Fudd (vewwyus quietus)

Another gun owner type recognizable by clothing and branding on the pickup. Color stages alternate between tan, Realtree®, and blaze orange. May be found in a duck blind holding a Browning Auto-5 grumbling about “assault weapons” and suggesting they be banned. Variations may appear on trap, skeet or sporting clays fields, typically changing chokes on a shotgun with the action closed. The Fudd’s numbers have been in decline in recent years since a prime example of the species Jim Zumbo was discovered with an advanced case of foot-in-mouth disease.  Other factors in the declining numbers include the AR-15 dominating the firing line at Camp Perry where the Gravel-Bellied variety of the Fudd (see also v.q. sabulum) discovered that gun laws also affected his target rifle. 


​​Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Reloading Oracle (oneratis iterum omnisciens)
Used to know a guy who knew Elmer Keith. Sits near the reloading counter of the local gun shop dispensing wisdom to anyone who will stand still long enough to receive it.  Has memorized maximum loads and velocities for every caliber from .218 Bee to .460 Rigby. Once went rabbit hunting.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Tinkerer (munitor fucilis)
Owns one rifle. Has replaced every part except the receiver. Has worked up perfect loads for every target from prairie dogs to elk. Shoots all year round. Has replaced barrels because they were shot out.  Has several subgenera, including the Cheapskate Tinkerer (m.f. frugalis) whose one rifle is a Mosin-Nagant, the Tactical Tinkerer (m.f. militaris) whose one rifle is an AR15 in .300 Blackout, the Woodsman Tinkerer (m.f. exterus) whose one rifle is a 1963 Model 70 in .30-’06, and the Gravel-Bellied Tinkerer (m.f. sabulum) which gathers in large numbers at Camp Perry, Ohio every summer.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Pistol Packin’ Parent (pater pistolus)
At one time believed extremely rare, this species has either become more common or less shy. Male of the species teaches the Eddie Eagle dance (Stop! Don’t touch! Leave the area! Tell an adult!) to random four-year-olds it encounters. Argues gun control with teachers.  Female does not display as much, but may be recognized by a thin-lipped smile when encountering its natural enemy, the Demanding Mom (mega mater confusus). Either gender can be extremely dangerous when offspring are threatened.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Negligent Gun Owner (armatus negligencis)
Owns three guns. Or is it two? That’s right, his meth-head cousin “borrowed” that one pistol. Was it a revolver? Yes, thats it, owns two guns, a .22 rifle inherited from an uncle, and then bought the Glock after cousin took that one revolver. Wanted a gun in the house, especially after cousin’s friends started hanging out. Fired one clip (isn’t it called a clip?) and put it in the bedside table.  Pretty sure it’s there. Believes in the Second Amendment. Votes Democratic.

Statistics (Approximate)*
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0
*May be an unwitting accessory to criminal acts.

The Red-Necked Idiot (armatus imbecilis rosocollum)
Recognizable by its common call, “Hold my beer and watch this!” Similarities to the Negligent Gun Owner, may indicate inter-breeding with the Meth-Head Cousin (not a Legal Gun Owner).  The Red-Necked Idiot is often a transitory stage to a Prohibited Person under the U.S. Gun Control Act of 1968. Non-Gun Owners, particularly those native to the northern corners of the United States, frequently assume the a. negligencis and a.i. rosocollum are typical of the entire genus of Legal Gun Owner. This is particularly true if the Non-Gun Owner has been exposed to the works of Jesco White (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Je…).  To the contrary, the Red-Necked Idiot is fairly rare. Evolutionary forces keep the species in check. They can appear to be more common than they actually are due to the number that show up in YouTube videos doing stupid stuff. The attractive power of video to this species needs further research.

Statistics
Accounts for a significant percentage of accidental (other Legal Gun Owners say “negligent”) injuries, but the overall rate of crime remains low. 

The Low-Information Gun Owner (armatus disinformatus)
Marked by a common call pattern rarely heard in other species:  “I own guns and I believe in the Second Amendment, but….”  What follows the “but” is usually proof that the the Low Information Gun Owner fails to understand either guns or the Second Amendment.  Was satisfied with the 1994 Clinton-Feinstein ban since it exempted his Ruger Mini-14 and Browning Auto-5 by name, even though his guns differed from guns that were banned only in cosmetic features.  Supports idea of “Universal Background Checks” while copying the phone number from the range bulletin board to look at a used .38 revolver for the house.  There is speculation that the Low-Information Gun Owner may be a transition stage to Ex-Gun Owner (armatus priorus).

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Libertarian Gun Nerd (cerebrum libertatem fucilis)
Interest in guns arises from from viewing the gun as an intellectual exercise. The original interest may have been sparked by a class in Newtonian Physics, or from reading political theory. Often works in a highly technical field, such as System Administration. As a sysadmin, the LGN may express as the Technical Thug (c.f. http://pages.swcp.com/~mccurley/humor/thug.html). Some Unix shops have been known to require that System Administrators own either a pickup or a gun, and preferably both.   The Libertarian Gun Nerd may be a transitory stage to some variety of Tinkerer, or possibly a Collector.  Factors determining the final stage are unknown.

Statistics (Approximate)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

The Collector (accumulus fucilis)
Similar in habits and life cycle to its close relative, the Coin (a. numismaticus), Stamp (a. philatelus), and Model Railroad (a. ferrovias) Collectors and similar creatures of the Collector genus. Virtually all are male, although they may sometimes be seen in the company of female-dominated Collector species such as Figurine Collectors (a. adorabilis). Whether and how the entire genus reproduces is unknown and, it appears, will remain so since no one wants to know. Many subspecies exist, breaking down to astounding levels of specialization. A few examples follow:

  • Smith & Wesson Revolver Collector (a.f. smithus cylindrus) Given a serial number and model, can tell from memory the date of manufacture. Knows whether the barrel was pinned, or whether the grip checkering forms a diamond around the grip screw. Subgroups exist around particular models (e.g. Model 29, Model 27). Similar groups exist for virtually every manufacturer, with subgroups around particular classes or models.
  • Colt Single Action Collector (a.f. monoactio)  Among the best-known members of this species was singer Mel Torme who once owned this piece:

  • Class III Collector (a.f. automaticus) Solely interested in automatic arms. Unlike many members of the Collector, is likely to shoot the guns in his collection.

The Stereotype Breakers (Genus stereotypicus rupturus)
Once rarely seen, but increasingly common, particularly in urban environments with a suitable habitat. Thrives in urban areas of Texas and Arizona, for example.  Long-established populations of gun owners have been known to react with suspicion, but have become more acclimated as environmental hazards to gun ownership have arisen.  Unlike traditional species of Gun Owners who come to guns through cultural and familial connections, Stereotype Breakers are often drawn to gun ownership by frequently unpleasant circumstances. 

Statistics (Approximate, for entire species and subspecies)
Murders committed: 0
Robberies committed: 0
Assaults committed: 0

Subspecies

  • The Black Man With A Gun (Title borrowed from my friend, podcaster and very cool guy, Kenn Blanchard, the real Black Man With A Gun™.  Before Colion Noir there was Kenn) (s. r. souljus) Many early gun control laws originated as Black Codes in the post-Reconstruction South. As the learned justices of the Supreme Court wrote in the infamous Dredd Scott decision, giving African-Americans full citizenship would, among other things give them the right to “keep and carry arms wherever they went.” It was to prevent just that horror that the Court ruled that Mr. Scott had no standing to sue his master in a free state. Rural African-Americans have long been hunters.  Martin Luther King was refused a Concealed Carry License.  Contrast that with the fact that in recent years an increasingly affluent urban middle class has become common in the once lily-white confines of the shooting clubhouse. Of course, no one said anything to Sammy Davis Junior:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6aNzFYHyz8?rel=0&showinfo=0]

  • The Gay Gunner (s.r. queeribus) The derogatory term faggot comes from the ancient sport of burning gay men at the stake. In other words, gay bashing is nothing new. Like other members of the Stereotype Breakers genus, the Gay Gunner may have been unexpectedly common for years. Often congregate in gregarious flocks such as Pink Pistols. May be a closeted Republican. Marriage equality is nice and all, but self-defense trumps in the privacy of the voting booth.
  • The Single Lady (s.r. unafemina) Her interest in guns arises from a relationship with the wrong guy. Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety was so concerned about her plight they had a video made where an abusive ex kicks in a door to threaten a woman and child:

    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUAL6ie1ufc?rel=0&showinfo=0]
    Police dispatcher asks whether she has a restraining order.  Yes, but he’s continuing to break the door down.  Rather than get another order, or as Everytown suggests, calling a senator, Single Lady gets a gun and takes a class. Then more classes. Then more classes. She now shoots competition IDPA and USPSA. Her formerly-threatening ex has left town.

It’s still a work in progress, but unquestionably accurate so far.

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