Funker530 – Combat Footage posted a short article accompanying some footage from Spartan117GW‘s channel featuring Travis Haley at an airsoft skirmish. This paragraph stuck out to me like a lighthouse on a foggy peninsula.
“Airsoft has been given a bad reputation by those who have taken it too seriously and proceeded to tell everyone that they’re every bit as tactically trained as actual military personnel and have filled their social media pages with ambiguous photos that will lead many uninformed viewers to assume that said person is actually a serving military member.”
I had what we’ll call a firm debate with someone in the DMs recently on the exact subject that’s mentioned in the 2nd half of the paragraph. I have no beef with that person in particular or anyone for that matter, I just entirely disagree with the stance that is the responsibility of the viewer to have to dig around and figure out if someone is actually serving or not when that person posts pictures which attempt to make themselves look like they really super seriously need that black eye box lest their family be murdered. I think if you post that sort of stuff it is entirely on your shoulders to make it clear you are playing airsoft/dress-up and it should ideally be obvious from only a cursory glance at the image, caption or hashtags.
My personal opinion is that lying through omission is one of the biggest black marks on the airsoft community as far as the way it’s viewed by active and veteran military folks. Some of the aforementioned are cool with it of course, but there are also *plenty* who aren’t and I see a distinct tendency for some people to simply pretend that that is not the reality as they have a few examples that reinforce their viewpoint and are content to leave it at that.
It’s entirely possible to argue that if you look at some of my own posts in full isolation then they could potentially come across to a smaller number of people that I am far more tactical than the REMF I actually am. However personally I feel like posting almost exclusively about kit without showing myself wearing any of it is a million miles away from dressing up exactly the same as a member of SOF, blurring my face and posing with a fake gun in front of some afghani looking scrubland. But all that is open to interpretation of course, as with anything. I’ll not go down the rabbit hole of people talking about ‘slaying bodies out on the AO’ in this post.
This sort of discussion usually gets a couple of people angry and they accuse me of a wide array of consistently contradictory things, but c’est la vie. You don’t stand by a raging fire saying ‘man I wish this fire would stop burning down this place I like to go’ without chucking on a bucket of water at least.