Dempsey Darrow: It’s a Game of Semantics

Let me clear the air about something: this ridiculous term, “Assault Rifle”, that’s being bandied about so freely lately, even by people who should know better. As I’ve posted before, there’s no such thing. The term is an exercise in semantics. It’s useful to those wanting to keep Americans from exercising their Second Amendment rights by saying, “Weapons of war shouldn’t be allowed in the hands of civilians.” Otherwise, it’s simply fluid terminology.

Someone on line trotted out an obscure pamphlet published by the government in 1970 using the term. Similarly, there’s a manual available on line titled, “AK-47 Assault Rifle Operator’s Manual”, produced by, “The 203d  Military Intelligence Battalion”. MI? Seriously? Show me the soldier’s bible, the FM, or Field Manual, that makes mention of an “Assault Rifle”. The title of FM 23-9 is “Rifle, 5.56-mm, M16A1”. No mention of “Assault Rifle”. No description of “Weapon of War”. Assault is both a noun and a verb, an action, that can be ascribed to an attack or anything used in an attack, such as, (ludicrous though it may sound) assault feet, assault forehead, assault phone cord, assault panties. All of these, and many, many more, have been used in assaults.

It’s gotten so ridiculous that attempts have been made to nail down the term, “Assault Rifle”, with descriptions such as “mid-power cartridge”, “selective fire”, etc. Spare me the after-the-fact attempts to qualify something so ridiculous.

Some will tell you that the term was coined by Adolf Hitler in his use of the title, “Sturm Gewehr”. Even Google Translate and Wikipedia say the term means, “Assault Rifle”. 


The German, “sturm”, means “storm”, and, “gewehr”, means “gun”. Storm gun. The German words for “assault” are “angriff” or “anschlag”. Weapon is, “waffe”. Use a different word and you’re bending it to your desired meaning. Some translations say that, “Blitz Krieg”, means, “Flash War”. No, although most do get this right. “Blitz”, means, “lightning”, and, “krieg”, means, “war”. Lightning War.

Sadly, some who should know better (e.g., law enforcement), are now buying into the “Assault Rifle” myth. And so, additional chips continue to be chisled from our constitutionally protected rights. The acceptance of the term is another step in the direction of government intruding upon, and restricting, the law abiding. Never did I hear the term, “Assault Rifle”, or, “Assault Weapon”, growing up with my WWII and Vietnam deployed father, or during my time at West Point, or during my tenure in the Infantry. Never, while the instructors taught us the importance – extreme importance – of the maintenance and custody of our, “Rifles”. However, the horseshit terminology continues to flow. As it spreads, more will buy into this fictitious characterization.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, FM 23-35 Pistols and Revolvers, will guide me through the pre-cleaning disassembly of my M1911A1 (“Assault”, “Weapon of War”) pistol.

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2 thoughts on “Dempsey Darrow: It’s a Game of Semantics”

  1. I’ve made a point countless times. I own both the Ruger Mini-14 and a Bushmaster AR-15. I’ve used both as police patrol rifles, in my humble opinion the Ruger has the better iron sights. I switched to the Ar-15 because if an active shooter went down, the magazines were not interchangeable. But they both have 30 plus round magazines available, They both fire one pullet per squeeze. They both fire .223.

    I will ask my liberal and ignorant (redundant I know) friends what’s the difference, other than the design (e.g., the Ruger doesn’t have a forward assist)and their heads explode. Often they scream “Ban both!,” even though I’ve yet to hear of a mass shooter using a Mini-14. I’ve offered to take some friends/family of mine to the range to give them an orientation to multiple firearms, but they always decline (almost as bad as that WP dude who got PTSD from firing .223, thank of what he would have with a .44. .45 or a .50?).

    Pardon me while I start working on my Sig 230, and I’ll get on my M1911A1 (“Assault”, “Weapon of War”) pistol.

  2. Libtards never take up an enthusiastic Patriot’s offer for a trip to the range 🙁
    I’m sure a percentage of “even them” would experience growth through a guided (and safe) experience with “scary black hardware”🇺🇸

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