Originally Posted by Gerkraz
Just as a bit of a redirect, consider paintball. (I know, I know)
Paintball, especially speedball, has become a sport soccer moms can get behind. Why? Because:
- You're using markers, not guns.
- You're tagging, not killing.
- You're speedballing, not skirmishing.
- You're playing tournaments, not engagements/campaigns.
- You're wearing jerseys, not camo.
- You're on a three-man team, not a fireteam.
...and so on.
I mean, it's true paintball has changed a lot over the years, but a LOT of this change is ONLY a change in terminology.
Now, I can see NO drawbacks to any change in terminology referring to airsoft. We all get to play the same game, but we just call it something a little different.
"But I don't want to be a LARPer!!"
Boo-fucking-hoo. We're all LARPers. From the moment we put on our camo, use our replica guns, etc, we're all playing a role that is not us, in live action.
You just proved my point.
Paintball has evolved into what it is today as a result of efforts to make it socially acceptable. In it's early days, it was very similar to what we do with airsoft guns today.
Originally Posted by Greylocks
A car is no less a car if you refer to it as an automobile.
And in the public perception, a gun-toting lunactic is no less a lunatic if he refers to himself as something else.
In order to make it socially acceptable, they had to stop wearing combat fatigues, drop realistic looking guns, and start using descriptors that don't imply any association with violence. That concept doesn't work with airsoft, now does it?
At the end of the day, whatever you call it, we're still socially unacceptable as long as we're using scale replicas to stalk human prey and fire at other human beings, while dressed up in evil killing fatigues representing the baby-killers of our choosing.
No matter what you call it, we're armed to the teeth and look pretty scary.
To think that soccer moms everywhere will suddenly embrace the sport by calling it something different is assinine. At the end of the day, its the guns and the gear that are the problem, not the name of the sport. If we used "markers" that didn't look like guns and still fired plastic bb's we wouldnt have a problem with soccer moms regardless of what clothes we wear while doing it.
Re-enactment is more socially acceptable because the images of a 19th century musketteer is far less threatening, and an obvious reenactment of historical significance, than a current day representation of JTF2 or the SAS.
For the record, I don't care what you do either way.
The uniforms and equipment we employ lend easily to the concept of "military role-playing", but I think you're putting too much faith in the name being the catalyst for the bad press we receive when it's clearly the realistic-looking "assault weapons" that cause us grief.
Ultimately, if you want to see airsoft protected, you have to join the fight to preserve firearms rights. The two are intimately connected; if firearms are banned outright, airsoft will follow shortly thereafter if not included in the banning legislation.
Join the CSSA, and help protect both.