Written by Gunsite instructor Lew Gosnell
Eight men and women, aged from late twenties, to early seventies, follow the
Gunsite command to “Make ready!” The weapon in their hands, some variant of theubiquitous semi-automatic AR-15, mostly a carbine length version, bearing a modernelectronic red dot sight, or variable power scope.
Taught from the first moment in the classroom that the training will be about fighting with a firearm; weaponry manipulation, accuracy and tactics are stressed.
Often erroneously called an “Assault Weapon”, the classic civilian version of the
military M-16, the AR-15 is no more an assault weapon, than your grandmother’s
Marlin .22. The full-auto, military M-16, and now M4 and M-16A1, A2 and A4, are now
the longest serving US issue rifle in history, having been used by 10’s of millions
of current and former service members, from Vietnam to Afghanistan, and dozens of
lesser wars in between.
It is a natural, that this rifle would have to be the most important and popular gun
in America. The “AR Carbine” made by dozens of gunmakers including Colt and FN, is
lightweight, accurate, and offers mild recoil that is easily controlled by those
smaller, older, or with disabilities.
In revolutionary times, the Pennsylvania Rifle was a symbol of the Minutemen,
patriots, prepared to defend their country against any enemy. Today, that rifle has
changed, though the mission is the same.
Todays Minutemans rifle is an AR Carbine.