Friday, April 16, 2010

Not Really A Nation Of Riflemen Anymore

When Italians have to point out that US contractors in Afghanistan failed to teach Afghan police recruits how to adjust the sights on their AK-47's and M-16's, you know that the tradition of arms expertise in this country is no longer what it was.



wally said...

A nation of riflemen! You sure know how to paint a picture of an idyllic Eden, Bob!

Bob said...

@wally: It's not original with me, Walt. Several gun bloggers have tried to jump-start such a movement, with limited success. Regardless, the tradition of arms training in the US was quite high 100 years ago; in rural areas boys learned to shoot at an early age, hunting was wide-spread, and shooting contests and demonstrations (Annie Oakley, for example) were part of popular culture. Even in cities there were shooting galleries where, for a few pennies, city boys and men could shoot .22 rifles and pistols for prizes; shooting galleries were also popular at county fairs.

The National Rifle Association's original mission was to promote the art of rifle shooting across the country so that Americans would be prepared in the case of a war.

wally said...

I imagine a higher percentage of our population was adept at skinning animals, plowing fields, and building cabins in earlier times, too.

We all lament the passing of customs we knew and cherished. It's human nature. But as my dad would have said: lament in one hand and shit in the other and see which one fills up first.

MauserMedic said...

In 1990, my ranking Drill Instructor solemnly informed us that the 55 grain, 5.56mm bullet fired from the M16A1 rifle was incredibly deadly due to the fact that it tumbled out of the barrel, thus leaving huge wound tracts.

This would be the same man who had us clean those rifles with segmented rifle rods chucked into electric drills. Yes, really. This particular art died a long time ago, other than inside The Corps.