When discussing the subject of firearms in America, you will inevitably come across the term “Who makes traditions?” Traditions are the things we do to commemorate a past event or just give ourselves a little twist on what we’re all used to. This may seem a bit strange and even a little stupid considering that firearms were not always used for their basic purpose, but the fact is that they have a significant place in American history. For example, the very first gun was invented by a Native American on an island in the Pacific Ocean.
When the Native Americans wanted to mark a location or identify a person, they would poke a hole in their hide and use the sharp end of a stick to poke the symbol of an eagle into it. That symbol has stuck to the end of every rifle and pistol ever since, whether it was used for hunting, self-defense or as a tool of culture. In fact, the creation of firearms meant the end of war altogether and marked the beginning of America’s long stand on the material side of its economy. Without that innovation, many of our nation’s economic engines wouldn’t be what they are today.
So who makes traditions? The short answer is that nobody makes them, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some people who have done so for their own reasons. Some people like to collect firearms, while others like to shoot at targets and use their hobby as a form of self defense. Others like to study the history and development of firearms and the various types that have been made over the centuries. Still others just enjoy collecting them.
The bottom line is that no one really makes traditions. They are ideas, whether we want to admit that or not, that people start with. Whether we acknowledge this or not, however, the fact remains that some people just like to collect guns, shoot at targets and otherwise use their hobby as a way to define themselves and their place in the world. This, after all, is much more common than we think.
One group who has a strong desire to establish a connection between who makes traditions and guns is the firearms industry. The industry works hard to distinguish itself from other manufacturers who might try to use similar approaches to their product. For example, a company could try to make a children’s toy that looks just like a real gun, or a hunting accessory that looks a lot like a real gun, or a pistol that is very similar to an antique gun. Each of these products would be identified by the specific type of gun that they are meant to replace. Thus, if you were looking for a child’s toy that was called the Smith and Wesson Model 7, you wouldn’t buy it because it was a Remington model, but because it looked like a Remington model.
This kind of thinking is, of course, very limited. If someone were to develop a children’s toy gun that was almost indistinguishable from a Remington model, no one would really know the difference, right? But if we take a broader view, when we think about who makes traditions, we realize that there are several different types of companies that are responsible for developing children’s toys. So, if you’re looking for a gun, it makes sense to look for a company that makes firearms.