MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough was on the recieving end of criticism over the weekend after he advocated on Twitter for gun control after the recent New Zealand terrorist attack.
The terror attack, which left at least 50 people dead, happened late last week when a racist ethnonationalist — who was bent on creating racial division — went on a shooting spree targeting Muslims at two mosques.
“Those suggesting the AR-15 was NOT developed as a weapon of war should read up on history,” Scarborough tweeted. “The AR-15 was developed as a military weapon to replace the M-14. Eugene Stoner designed it to be lighter and more lethal than the M-14. It was far deadlier than the M-16 used in Vietnam.”
“The AR-15 was proven to be lighter & more lethal than the M-14 or M-16,” Scarborough continued. “It was designed exclusively by Eugene Stoner to kill people in war.”
“As a longtime gun owner and supporter of the Second Amendment, I agreed with the Supreme Court’s ‘Heller’ holding that concluded Americans had the right to keep and bear arms,” Scarborough added. “But that constitutional protection did not, and will not, extend to guns designed as weapons of war.”
Scarborough received criticism from gun experts and combat veterans who punched holes in his statements.
Marine combat veteran Johnny Jones responded: “Almost every gun we use was developed as a weapon of war. As well as almost all communication equipment, nautical technology, most cold weather gear, and all our nonperishable foods.”
“AR-15 (as it exists today) is the same gun as M16 without fully automatic option and some with a shorter barrel (less accurate at longer distances),” Jones continued. “Fully auto M16s are no longer produced for the public to purchase. Joe get 3 Pinocchio’s. The AR 15 is specifically for civilians.”
“Joe is trying to say Eugene Stoner developed the fully auto, gas operating rifle, using a 5.56 caliber round which was the M16,” Jones concluded. “These were developed so that troops could carry more ammo and be lighter. The “AR-15” manufactured and available to Americans TODAY, IS NOT that weapon.”
David Harsanyi, Senior Editor at The Federalist, tweeted: “AR-15 is not designed for war. What you’re saying is historically untrue — and Fallows, unsurprisingly, has the facts wrong. Stoner sold the AR to civilians before the military. And kept selling them until 1977 when his patent ran out.”
Combat Veteran Jim Hanson tweeted: “Wrong. Guns currently called AR-15s are not the same as the one you mention, which was a fully automatic assault rifle. They are semi-automatic. The Stoner AR-15 was not more lethal than the M-14 which fires a much more powerful round. Tales of tumbling 5.56 rounds are fantasy.”
“Anyone who would prefer being shot by a 7.62 rd from an M14 vs. a 5.56 rd from an AR-15 is a fool,” Hanson added. “Today’s AR-15s do not fire fully automatic so they’re no different from any semi-auto hunting rifle. They are not weapons of war or magically lethal.”