Vegas & Virginia

Starting today, two very important events in the world of firearms begin. In Las Vegas, the annual SHOT (Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade) Show kicks off. This is the industry show where the manufacturers, distributors and dealers come together to show off and see the latest and greatest products that will lead the industry into the future.  In Virginia, it is Lobby Day at the state capitol in Richmond. Here Second Amendment advocates and firearm owners from around the state and patriots from the rest of our nation will be gathering to protest the Constitutional infringements being planned by the Virginia legislature. On one side of the country, the best of the firearms industry future is on display. On the other side, people are fighting for their very right to retain their firearms against an increasingly tyrannical state government. Can you guess which one is going to have the most influence on the firearms marketplace in the foreseeable future? 

If you haven’t been paying attention, Virginia’s Governor and Democratic controlled legislature have been cranking up the heat on Virginia’s law-abiding firearm owners. In addition to all the previously proposed Second Amendment infringements I listed in Sic Semper Tyrannis on January 6, 2020 (http://oddstuffing.com/archives/610), they’ve added more. 

  • Closing all private / non-government shooting ranges (an admitted attempt to close down the NRA’s indoor range)
  • Virginia’s electoral college votes to be awarded to the winner of the national popular vote
  • The governor to be elected by majority of votes in congressional districts, not by statewide majority
  • Increase the number of signatures to initiate a recall petition from 10% to 25% of the voters
  • Restores voting rights to convicted felons
  • Allows felons and those declared mentally incompetent to vote
  • Eliminates photo ID requirement for voting
  • Increases the term limit of the governor from four to eight years

If these aren’t blatant attempts to impose a tyranny, I don’t know what is. 

And let’s not forget, the Governor has made the capitol complex a gun free zone in anticipation of Lobby Day. He justified this because of supposed ‘credible threats’ from Second Amendment extremists. He said he doesn’t want to have a repeat of the violence in Charlottesville in 2017 – where the only deadly violence was committed by someone with an automobile and NO firearms were used. Yea… I’m gonna call BS on this one. 

Yes, there are people who are speak strongly and emotionally about their Second Amendment rights. And why shouldn’t they? You’re talking about a government that is trying to take away rights from law-abiding citizens. But this is Lobby Day at the legislature and the people are there to let their representatives know what matters to them. It serves nobody’s interest to do so violently, and the gun controlling elitists know it. So.. so-called ‘credible threats’ have been introduced. I have no doubt threatening messages were sent and received, I’m just saying the senders may very well be the same people wanting to implement gun control. In other words, a false flag operation. It’s not like it hasn’t happened before in this country. 

A bit tinfoil hat’ish for you? Maybe. But we’ve all seen attacks on minority, religious and political sites that have turned out to be committed by the very people being attacked in order to gain political sympathy and legal action against others.  

Today the eyes of the country will be on Richmond waiting for the slightest provocation for the Governor to declare the Second Amendment rights groups domestic terrorists and send in the troops to clean them out. Sadly, you can count on agitators from the gun control side to be onsite trying to make it happen.  

It is very unfortunate that the best and most influential in the firearms industry will be in Las Vegas today instead of on the ground in Richmond, Virginia. If there was ever a time when the industry should be standing side-by-side with their customers and supporters, the very people who have made them successful in the first place, it is today. The timing more than sucks on this one. 

For everyone in Las Vegas, I hope you (actually we, since I’m here to) don’t forget that people in Virginia are fighting for their natural, God-given, Constitutionally protected rights today. What happens in Richmond is going to influence the rest of the country in ways we can’t even imagine yet. If we can’t be there with them, let’s hope and pray for their safety and success. Then:

GET OFF YOUR ASS AND STOP ELECTING PEOPLE WHO PROMISE TO TAKE AWAY OUR SECOND AMENDMENT RIGHTS!!!! 

Bob

#oddstuffing, #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #VirginiaGunControl, #SecondAmendmentSanctuary, #Virginia, #LasVegas, #NSSF, #SHOTShow, #Texas, #Kentucky, #NewMexico, #Colorado, #2ASanctuary, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Six Seconds

That’s how long it took for an armed civilian to take down an active shooter in a church in Texas.  Six seconds.  As many have noted, the duration of active shooter events is determined by the arrival of the SECOND firearm on the scene, be it by law enforcement or an armed civilian. In all cases, unless law enforcement is already on the scene, the armed civilian response will ALWAYS be the fastest response. So why do gun control politicians insist on disarming law-abiding armed citizens in public and private places?  Sadly, the answer is because they would rather sacrifice the lives of you and your family in order to promote the false narrative that gun control is the only way you can ever be safe. Guess what? A 71-year-old man in Texas just proved them wrong. 

Facts and videotapes are hard things to ignore. While the shooting in Texas was caught on video, it hasn’t stopped the anti-gun zealots and politicians from making up their own facts about the incident. For one, they claim that this shooting would never have occurred if the Texas Governor hadn’t signed a law allowing firearms in churches. Of course, the facts they are conveniently burying is that 98% of all mass shootings in the United States since 1950 have occurred in “Gun Free Zones”. Infamously, the only protection most of our schools have is a little sign declaring it to be a Gun Free Zone. THIS is all the protection your children receive under gun control. 

So too do they attempt to dismiss the heroism of the man who stopped the shooter in Texas by claiming he is not an ‘ordinary’ armed citizen. Yes, he was a former reserve deputy sheriff (for six years), as well as a firearms instructor. But note reserve deputy; not full time. And let’s also look at the situation. He had just witnessed two of his friends shot at close range with a shotgun by the shooter who was moving away from him. He drew from concealment, while moving, and… having to wait to take his shot because of innocent people between him and the shooter, took a single shot to the shooters head from about 50 feet and ended it in six seconds. It doesn’t matter if you are a firearms instructor, former reserve deputy, full time law enforcement, SWAT, special forces or Spetsnaz, that was a masterful shot! And have you forgotten the guy is 71 years old. 

Yes, he had more training than most, but that’s not why this shooting ended in six seconds. It ended because he was prepared. It ended because the church was prepared. There was a security team in place who had planned and trained extensively for exactly this kind of remote possibility. Let’s not forget that two members of the volunteer church security team also lost their lives in the first few seconds of this shooting. And had the one shot not stopped the shooter, at least five others in the church were armed, drawing firearms and prepared to stop him themselves. 

There too the gun control zealots say is something that shouldn’t happen. They say only the police should have guns and only they should be able to take someone’s life.  In this particular case, the citizens in the church should have just waited for the police to get there and deal with the shooter. Of course, in every gun free zone mass shooting, we’ve seen how many people die waiting for the police to show up. That didn’t happen here because there were people ready and able to defend their lives and the lives of others already there. 

After every shooting (that meets the political criteria the anti-gun politicians are looking for), there is an immediate call for more gun control. They claim only more gun control laws, taking away guns from the law-abiding firearm owners, will keep people safe. But what do the people actually think? 

Look at the most recent shooting in El Paso, Texas. The police response was about five minutes, which for a major city is actually pretty impressive. Yet by the time they got there the shooter was done, either out of ammunition or had just killed enough people and was taken into custody without incident. Following this incident and the politician’s call for gun control, the people started preparing to protect themselves. Firearm sales increased and concealed carry training classes in the area, which usually ran at about half capacity, were sold out. The people realized that they were their own best protection and first responder. 

Still, the hypocrites behind the gun control movement claim you do not need a firearm for protection in public. And every day they show how much they believe in this by surrounding themselves with small armies of heavily armed law enforcement and private security professionals, all carrying the very firearms they say you don’t need to protect yourself and your family. Perhaps gun control isn’t about “public safety” at all. Perhaps it’s really just about control. 

Later today, Texas Governor Greg Abbott will award Jack Wilson with the Texas Medal of Courage at the Governor’s mansion in Austin. The highest award the Governor can bestow on a civilian, it is given to civilians who display great acts of heroism by risking their own safety to save another’s life. I can’t think of a more fitting description for Jack Wilson’s actions. 

If you haven’t seen the video from inside the church, there is a link to at bottom of the page. It is raw and graphic, but not bloody. Still, it shows two men losing their lives before the shooter is stopped. It is a striking reminder of how quickly a violent incident unfolds, and the courage of ordinary men and women who are willing to stand up to evil and stop it in its tracks. 

I encourage you to use this horrific incident as inspiration to be a better defender of your own life and the lives of your family and friends. Train like your life depends on it, because that’s exactly what is at stake. Don’t be afraid, be prepared and be ready. And don’t ever let anyone tell you an ordinary law-abiding firearm owner can’t make a difference. You know better. 

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #BeLikeJack, #JackWison , #TexasHero, #TexasChurchShooting, #BePrepared, #FirearmTraining, #TexasMedalOfCourage, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

https://files.catbox.moe/r84gof.mp4

2020 – Time To Get On The List

In the past, my New Year message has included a call to go out and introduce a friend or family member to the shooting sports. After all, only by breaking down the barriers and showing others what a responsible, law-abiding firearm owner is really like can we hope to gain support in battling oppressive, unconstitutional gun control laws. But this year, I’m asking for something different. I’m asking for you to get off your ass and get involved in stopping these anti-Second Amendment laws.  It’s time to get on the list! 

What can you do?  You can contact each and every one of your elected representatives from your local town/city/county councils to your state and federal representatives. Don’t know who they are? FIND OUT!! The internet is your friend here folks. Figure out who they are and what their address, email address and phone number is. Pick the medium and send a message. 

What should you say? It doesn’t have to be long or particularly artful. All you have to do is let your representatives know you DO NOT support gun control legislation and you DO NOT support elected officials who do support gun control legislation. Urge them to vote NO on any proposed gun control laws.  That’s all there is to it! 

For those who resist doing this because they don’t want to get put on a list of some kind, guess what… You are already on the list. If you’ve purchased firearms and ammunition, belong to a gun group or range, read a pro-Second Amendment blog, liked a picture of a firearm on social media, you’re already on ‘the list’. Get over it! 

And if you’re not on a list, why they hell aren’t you?? The ONLY way we are going to stop these local, state and national infringements on our Second Amendment protected natural rights is to stand together. Just the few people who make a lot of noise isn’t going to cut it anymore. We ALL need to stand up and get counted. 

Trust me, there are worse things than being on a list of pro-Constitution, pro-Second Amendment, pro-independent thinkers, pro-freedom loving patriots. 

Take a look around you. Look at what is happening in Virginia, Texas, Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico. Look at what’s already happened in California, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, Washington, Oregon and Hawaii.  How much of your rights or your family’s rights are you willing to give up staying off the list? 

There isn’t one state in this country where our Second Amendment rights are not being challenged. If you think you are safe where you are because of long standing traditions and state level protections, think again.  Everything and everyone is in play here. 

You are the only one who can make a difference here. Make 2020 the year you get involved and get on that list. 

Bob

#oddstuffing, #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #GetOnTheList, #GunVote, #2020, #ProtectYourRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Mooting the US Supreme Court

While the Second Amendment community anxiously awaits a decision in the case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York, we have to consider if a moot decision in this case will effectively moot the United States Supreme Court itself.  On the other hand, any ruling other than moot will likely see the extreme left wing of congress working to reshape the Court itself. Either way, there is a whole lot more involved in this case than just the case itself. 

New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York is about the draconian Premise Licenses issued by the City of New York. It allowed Licensees to legally possess their firearms at the single permitted home or transported unloaded and locked to one of seven authorized ranges in the City. ANY transportation to ranges or homes outside the city was strictly prohibited, as was any travel not directly  between their home and the approved ranges. 

New York State Rifle & Pistol Association has been fighting this law for seven years. During this time, the City of New York has vigorously defended this law through the courts as a completely Constitutional restriction. After all, they claimed it was in the interest of “public safety” and that was all that was necessary.  That all changed once the case was granted cert (a writ of certiorari) for review by the United States Supreme Court.  Following this action, the City made a number of attempts to nullify or moot, the case including claiming they would relook at the law, amending the law administratively and finally reversing and revising the law so it gave the petitioners the ability to leave the City with their firearms. They even went so far as to have the State of New York loosen the state laws to back this up.  All of this happened at a speed unheard of in New York for pro-Second Amendment legislation. 

So that should be the end of it, right? Well, not really. There are a number of questions still remaining including the entire judicial process of how it got there. For seven years, the City of New York has been ardent in their defense of this law. Only after the highest court in the land, a court now leaning slightly more conservative, do they pull the plug and say mea culpa. Why? Because a ruling against the City of New York could have a far reaching and devastating impact on gun control legislation around the country. 

This isn’t the first time in recent history where the gun control community has decided to bite the bullet (sorry, bad pun) and accept less gun control than see a conservative leaning Supreme Court make a nationwide ruling. Washington DC became “Shall Issue” following Wrenn vs. District of Columbia where the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia court ruled the ban on open carry and “good reason” restrictions on concealed carry were unconstitutional. In order to protect the gun control laws of states like California, New York, Maryland, Massachusetts, Hawaii, New Jersey, and Connecticut, Washington DC did not pursue further appeals. Of course, DC continues to change their rules to make it extraordinarily expensive and difficult to obtain and keep a “Shall Issue” permit, but you wouldn’t expect them to just follow the law now would you? 

So what would a non- moot ruling mean? Other than getting a ruling on the original case itself, it would prevent the City and State of New York from simply reversing the law again and reinstating the exact same restrictions they had in place. But what the gun control zealots fear the most is the Court will rule favorably on firearms possession outside the home OR that Second Amendment cases must be examined under “Strict Scrutiny”. 

Some quick notes on Rational-Basis, Intermediate Scrutiny, and Strict Scrutiny

  • Under rational-basis the government must have a legitimate interest and the law must be “rationally related” to the interest. 
  • Under intermediate scrutiny, the government must have an important interest and the law must be substantially related to the interest. 
  • Under strict scrutiny, the government must have a compelling interest and the law must be narrowly tailored to the interest. 

Note that the likelihood of a law being overturned increases as the level of scrutiny increases. 

It’s also important to note that even when the district courts have examined cases under intermediate scrutiny, they have relied on shady, unreliable and incomplete “evidence” to reach their biased opinions in Second Amendment cases. 

What was the evidence in favor of the NYC travel ban? An affidavit with nothing more than a series of conclusory statements. The entire evidence in support of the travel ban was an affidavit from a former gun-licensing official. He speculated that licensed New York City handgun owners transporting unloaded handguns outside the city might perpetrate “road rage.”  Without a strong, definitive ruling from the US Supreme Court, logic like this is what will determine whether or not you get to keep your natural rights. 

And let’s not forget the attacks on the US Supreme Court members themselves. After the disgraceful attacks during Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, the possibility of his impeachment was openly discussed. This, as well as the so-called “grassroots” movement by graduates to remove him from his position as a lecturer at Harvard Law School and other positions, is nothing more than an attempt to intimidate him into tempering his rulings. 

Even more blatant was the brief five Democratic Senators filed in response to the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York case itself. They argued: “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it,” said the brief, filed in August by Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, Richard Durbin, D-Ill., and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y. “Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics.'”

The threat is crystal clear.  If the court rules against the City of New York, it will be restructured to a more liberal point of view.  If that isn’t the definition of political influence of a Supreme Court case, nothing is.  

So there you have it. If the case is ruled moot, the City of New York will be free to un-reverse their regulations and restrict law-abiding citizens in new and creative ways until another case makes it back to the US Supreme Court, just in time to be moot again. OR, the court can rule against the City of New York and establish the proper procedure for all Second Amendment cases – and risk being restructured to the point where it is no longer able to make any non-politically approved ruling. 

Who is to blame for having a non-independent judicial branch of our government?  We are… all of us citizens / voters who have allowed our representatives to make a mockery out of the Constitution and Bill of Rights.  Who we vote for has consequences and we’ve only begun to see how bad it can be. 

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #2A, #SCOTUS, #CityofNewYork, #WashingtonDC, #Intimidation, #Politics, #GunControlFails, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

PSPS = Profit Saving Power Shutoff

This week Californians were thrust back into the 19thcentury as electrical power was cut for a high wind event that triggered a so-called “Public Safety Power Shutoff”. Over 800,000 utility customers, an estimated 2,000,000 plus people, had their power shut down because it was dry and windy in their area. In reality, this was nothing more than the utility company doing everything they can to protect their profit margins regardless of the cost to the residents they serve.  Of course, the reality is they aren’t the ones who are really at fault for this. 

Yes, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) is a heartless, greedy monopoly that would rather spend its record profits on hiking executive compensation, bonuses and donations to Sacramento politicians than on equipment maintenance, upgrades and utility corridor maintenance, but that’s about what you’d expect from them.  It’s the people who have for decades allowed them to get away with it and protected them with laws, administrative rulings and rubber stamp approvals from activist judges in the state. Who are these people? They are your duly elected representatives in Sacramento and these unnecessary power outages are 100% on their heads. 

California’s Public Utility Commission (CPUC), appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the State Senate has long been recognized as just another unaccountable government bureaucracy whose cozy relationship and backdoor dealings with PG&E only confirm its lack of independence and willingness to work in the best interest of California residents. It’s role in the so-called “California Energy Crisis of 2000” and later following the San Bruno disaster in 2010 are just two prime examples. 

None of this is possible without the support and groundbreaking legislative work of the California Legislature and Governor’s office on behalf of the power companies and their shareholders. Time after time when the utilities could have been held accountable or could have been made to spend profits on equipment, upgrades and safety, the State of California has instead created laws protecting them. Instead of the companies profits being used for badly neglected safety upgrades over decades, the costs are passed on directly to the customers in the form of ever increasing rates for the now “emergency” upgrades to make the power and gas systems safe. 

The impetus for the new so-called “Public Safety Power Shutoff” program came from the California wildfires of 2018. Some, such as the Camp Fire, which killed 86 people, incinerated 19,000 homes and caused over $10 billion in damages, were directly caused by PG&E equipment. In response to the fire investigation results, PG&E quickly declared bankruptcy to protect itself and its shareholders. 

Let me ask you this. Does it seem normal or appropriate that in 2019, 140 years since the first electrical lines were hung to supply customers with power, that there is no way to keep these lines safe when it’s windy? No, of course not. That’s why power companies invest in new equipment and technology and do maintenance along the power transmission corridors.  Everyone except PG&E it seems. 

PG&E now faces billions of dollars of liability for the fires it caused because they themselves didn’t properly maintain and upgrade their equipment or do the proper maintenance along transmission corridors.  The irony of course is that if they had spent just a small fraction of those profits over the years on safety upgrades and maintenance, they wouldn’t be facing the billions of dollars in losses now… or have killed so many innocent people. Except now, that cost will be passed on to you. 

As far as what brought on this latest outage, it is attributed to dry weather, the presence of dry vegetation near power lines and winds. In other words, absolutely normal daily conditions in many parts of California. 

So what do Californians in the effected zones do?  Scramble to buy generators, overpriced coolers, gas and the last couple bags of ice in the community before the power goes out. Larger businesses were able to secure commercial generators to keep their products from spoiling during the outages. Smaller businesses, the vast majority of those in our communities, aren’t so fortunate. Aside from being out of business for a couple of days, entire stock and inventories were lost.  No power and no burglar alarms means easy going for the state’s criminals. 

For those paying close attention to the outage maps, you may have noticed the tech corridor through Silicon Valley and the immediate area around Sacramento were unaffected. Yes, it’s true. Silicon, computer code, pork and good old-fashioned greenbacks are effective deterrents to wildfire danger. 

The City of San Jose alone estimates it’s loss from the power outages at over $1 million dollars, and this is only the government loss, not the business and personal loss of San Jose residents. Nobody seems to be tallying up the costs for Californian’s, but hundreds of millions to a billion is a reasonable estimate. 

Who is responsible for these losses?  That’s easy, you are. PG&E is not responsible for any losses from a so-called “Public Safety Power Shutoff”. Your lost groceries, store inventory, loss of income, loss of business, accidents, injuries, deaths or crime, are all your responsibility because PG&E warned you ahead of time. Thank you Sacramento!! 

For the PG&E apologists who point out that PG&E is bankrupt and had no choice or ‘would you rather have your community burn to the ground’, I simply point out that this crystal ball reading response to prevent the slim probability of a possible wildfire is purely California utility thing. Everyone else seems to be able to operate in all weather conditions because they do upgrades and maintenance. 

Do I blame the public utility employees? For the most part, no. Most are honest, hard working people who are far removed from these kinds of decisions. At the same time, I take notice of the employees who respond to the electric utility caused wildfires wiping communities off the map by saying ‘hey, I’m on the gas side’. Similar to those who responded to the gas line explosion in San Bruno that incinerated 38 homes and eight people by saying, ‘hey, I’m on the electric side’. Perhaps if those on the inside of the company were to stress safety from within instead of “just doing their jobs”, the company would change from the inside vs. having to be mandated to do normal safety and maintenance operations. 

For his part, California’s Governor said residents should be outraged and infuriated by news of a widespread power shut-off to prevent deadly wildfires but that the utility had no choice. 

As with far to many things, the Governor is completely wrong. The utility did have a choice, in fact many of them over the years. They could have spent money on safety upgrades and maintenance instead of executive bonuses, but they didn’t and this is the result. At the same time, the State of California and the Governor of California could stop giving political and legal cover to PG&E who continue to dip into the bottomless pockets of the California ratepayer. 

If you want this insanity to stop, simply look at who is sitting in Sacramento collecting contributions from the utilities and passing laws to keep them protected from not doing their jobs or investing their millions in profits in upgrades and maintenance. If you don’t want this to continue, it’s time to vote them out. 

Remember; PSPS means Profit Saving Power Shutoff, and you are paying the price. 

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #PG&ESucks, #PSPS, #ProfitSavingPowerShutoff,  #CPUCSucks, #CAFails, #BlameSomeoneElse, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Gun Control: Hypocrites & Their Followers

In the world of gun control, there are two distinct groups; the hypocrites and those who blindly follow them.  There are those who set the direction, and those who are pushed in that direction. There are those who create and control the narrative and those who obey it.  If you think the gun control movement is this massive spontaneous grassroots movement it pretends to be, think again. Those in control know it’s a lie and actions expose them as hypocrites. 

I often refer to gun control advocates as elitists because that’s exactly who they are. They are the uber-rich, busy bodies that subtly bankroll the movement around the country. These elitists, and their favorite pet politicians, are in fact hypocrites.  While advocating for ever more draconian gun control measures for the public, they themselves are surrounded by small armies of heavily armed law enforcement and private security.  

Take a look at the people who are sponsoring and passing these laws. They live and work in buildings protected by armed security who screen everyone – except them – for weapons. When they are out in public, their armed security goes along with them to keep them safe from threats.  THIS is what they do to keep themselves safe. 

What do they do to keep you safe? They say you will be safe if they post a “Gun Free Zone” sign at public schools, theaters and restaurants.  They tell you these signs “don’t attract shooters, they repel them”. They say that firearms in the hands of the public are dangerous. They say you will be safe by outlawing certain types of scary looking firearms, ammunition and magazines. They tell you by limiting the type and number of firearms law-abiding citizens can possess, criminals will no longer have access to them. 

They pass laws mandating more licenses and fees to buy keep or carry firearms, plus mandatory training and registrations, all designed to keep firearms and ammunition out of the hands of everyday citizens. For those who can afford them, they pass laws to ensure they are limited, restricted, tightly controlled and disabled from use. 

They tell you a lot of tales about how you will be safe in a world without guns, while their heavily armed law enforcement and private security – paid for with your tax dollars – are making sure they are safe, with guns. 

They are hypocrites. 

Then there are the followers. Sadly, grieving parents and relatives who have lost loved ones to senseless acts of violence are paraded out for the cameras to mourn the victims and influence the public.  The public is shocked and looks for someone to blame and an immediate answer to how it could be prevented. The answer is always gun control. 

Ever tightening gun control (with the eventual goal of complete civilian disarmament) is put out as the ONLY answer to the “gun violence epidemic”.  Only by getting rid of the guns will the public ever be safe. Anyone that advocates for firearm rights is seen as heartless, complicit and just as responsible as those who actually pulled the trigger and killed others. 

The followers are the true believers of the gun control and spread the myth for free. Even if they live in communities where gun control has proven itself to be completely ineffective, they push for more gun control. Even if they live in areas of the country with the lowest crime and violence rates, they push for more gun control. It doesn’t matter the location or the circumstances, there is only one solution, gun control. 

The followers and the public at large are being fed a carefully crafted story designed to keep the gun control elitists safe, and the public unsafe. An unsafe public will cry out for safety and security, and the answer is always gun control. 

Inconvenient truths such as 98% of all mass shootings in the United States since 1950 have occurred in Gun Free Zones or that the areas of the country with the strictest gun control laws have the highest crime, murder and “gun violence” rates don’t seem to matter. Only emotions, feelings and blaming inanimate objects for the complex societal problems at the root of poverty, mental health, crime, violence and social injustice matter to the gun control movement. 

Remember, gun control does absolutely nothing to increase public safety and the answer to fix that shortcoming is always to implement more gun control.

Bob

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Gun Control – No Skin In The Game

In the ongoing battle between gun controllers – more accurately described as gun banners and gun confiscators – and Second Amendment supporters, it’s important to recognize who has what at stake. When the gun control zealots lose, they give up nothing except their false sense of security and it costs them nothing. Their rights are never lost and their own personal safety was never on the table. If they win, they gain further control over the unprotected masses that will need to come to them for protection. On the Second Amendment side, we are literally fighting to save our lives and the lives of our families. With each infringement it becomes more difficult to ensure our own safety at home and in public. If we win, we actually gain nothing more; we just get to keep our inalienable rights. 

A case in point is the City of Pittsburg who recently passed new local gun control ordinances place restrictions on so-called “military-style assault weapons” (among other things) despite having no legal authority to do so. Pennsylvania has clear preemption on all firearms regulations in the state. The rational behind preemption is clear. It is to prevent a patchwork of conflicting local laws that change without warning at invisible jurisdictional borders. What is legal in one part of the state becomes felonious elsewhere. Even the most conscientious law-abiding citizen would never be able to keep track of the changes as they travel through the state. Rights taken away locally also lead to second-class citizenship in parts of the state. 

So why did the City of Pittsburg do this? They simply have nothing to lose. In this case, the city council isn’t even using taxpayer money. Not that that would stop them, it’s not like it’s their own money, but in this situation all the legal services are being covered by a national gun control organization. All the city council has to do is listen, ignore public comments and cast a vote. What is at stake is the ability of activist enclaves throughout the state to disarm their citizens. If they lose, they lose nothing and there is absolutely no liability for them – or any lawmaker – for passing or attempting to pass unconstitutional laws.  But if they win, they become the darling of the gun control movement for having the courage to stand up to the evil and heartless “gun lobby”. 

Another example of not having any skin in the game is your local CLEO (chief law enforcement officer – aka politician with a badge) in a non-permissive “May Issue” jurisdiction. You as a law-abiding citizen wishing to exercise your Second Amendment rights and carry a concealed firearm for protection must prove to the CLEO that you have “just cause” and your need exceeds the resources and protection currently provided by local law enforcement. What exactly constitutes “just cause” is often a closely held, non-publicly disclosed secret, but that is the burden of proof you must provide. In practice, it tends to be less about the individual’s need and more about the relationship they have with the CLEO.

So why does the CLEO have no skin in the game? Because if they don’t issue you that elusive concealed carry permit and you are a victim of violent crime, you have absolutely no recourse. This includes situations where the law enforcement agency had specific actionable information about the threat and neglected or refused to take action to stop it. Time and time again, victims of violent crimes have attempted to take legal action against departments and individual officers for not protecting them only to have the courts repeatedly uphold the ruling that law enforcement has no duty to protect you. In fact, the only people law enforcement is duty bound to protect are the criminals in their custody. How’s that for sad irony?

Here’s a question for your permit denying CLEO. If your need for self-defense with a firearm is deemed to not exceed the level of law enforcement services in your locality, and entire state for that matter, are they willing to sign a waiver of their liability immunity? After all, if they aren’t willing to allow you the means to adequately defend yourself because they can do it, doesn’t that imply they can and will protect you?

Of course no CLEO is ever going to waive their liability immunity because they know there is no way in hell law enforcement can ever protect you from violent crime. The only “deterrent” they can offer is to investigate the crime after the fact and pray the perpetrator will be prosecuted and given some form of punishment. In the current age of activist criminal justice reform and the lack of accountability for one’s own actions this environment breeds, fewer and fewer criminals will ever face any meaningful punishment for the violent crimes committed against you. Simply stated, there isn’t really a deterrent any more. 

It is true you can challenge the CLEO’s refusal to issue concealed carry permits, as many have, but very few have gotten very far. To date the United States Supreme Court has not ruled favorably on Second Amendment rights outside the home. So there really isn’t a downside for the CLEO not issuing a concealed carry permit. The only option open to you is to pay more taxes for more officers so you can “feel” safer while the CLEO gains more power and control over the populace. Your actual safety isn’t really their concern. 

If you’re thinking the system is stacked against you, you are correct. The lawmakers can’t be held liable for unjust or unconstitutional laws because they also made themselves immune. YOU mess up and you will feel the full force if the law against you. They mess up and they run for another term based on their courage to challenge the system. 

The chances of getting any elected body to pass laws removing their immunity are basically zero. With no way to get their skin in the game, our only option is to elect representatives who will support and defend our constitutional rights. If they don’t believe in the Constitution and Bill of Rights, how long do you think it’s going to be before you have no rights left to defend?

Bob

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Semi-Automatic Mechanisms – The New Assault Weapons

Politically defined terms like so-called “assault weapons” have many problems. Among them is the definition tends to evolve over time. It can mean one thing today and tomorrow grow to include much more. These terms also tend to be geographically specific. An “assault weapon” in one state – or even city – isn’t an “assault weapon” in another. Each jurisdiction gets to pick and choose what they think an “assault weapon” is. The new trendy thing is to call for a complete civilian ban on all semi-automatics. And you thought they just wanted your scary black rifles. 

The latest attempt to massively expand the type of firearms law-abiding citizens can own comes from Massachusetts. In the wake of the shooting in a gun free zone in Virginia Beach, VA, an unknown group of naysayers came out with the revelation that the .45 caliber handguns used in that shooting shares the same deadly feature as the dreaded AR-15 – the semi-automatic mechanism. Now, “the most severe gun-related problem facing our society is the proliferation of guns containing a semiautomatic mechanism.” 

Their organization “is working to achieve legislation that will ban the semiautomatic mechanism in any gun sold or owned in Massachusetts. These are weapons that were designed for military and law enforcement purposes only and not for the general public. Revolvers, lever-action, pump-action, and bolt-action guns cover the full spectrum of civilian needs, whether they are hunting, personal protection, or home protection. The semiautomatic mechanism for guns has no place in civilian hands.”

<deep sigh> Really folks? 

Of course the first successful semi-automatic firearm was designed by Ferdinand Ritter von Mannlicher in 1885.  The iconic Model 1911 pistol has been in service from – you guessed it – 1911, that’s 108 years old!  There’s nothing horribly sinister or deadly about the mechanism, it simply ejects the fired cartridge and loads the next one to be fired the NEXT time the trigger is pulled. The capacity of the magazine determines how many times you can pull the trigger before the firearm is empty. Massachusetts, being one of the nanny gun control states, says that number is 10. Of course, a standard 1911 magazine is only eight. 

If it’s not a magazine capacity thing, is it the shooting speed the antis don’t like? Of course not.  Semi-automatics don’t fire any faster than revolvers. In fact, the world’s fastest shooter used a revolver to put eight rounds on target in one second.  And no, there is no such thing as “full semi-automatic”, the ludicrous phase coined by an anti-gun former Army officer in the employ of CNN. 

Why the new fixation on all things semi-automatic?  It’s merely an attempt to put more firearms on the banned list and get them taken out of the hands of law-abiding civilian owners. The tactic has been used for years in the states that have some sort of “assault weapon” definition. What started as a specific list of firearms ‘too deadly for civilian use’ has been systematically expanded to include firearms with purely cosmetic “evil features”. The state of Washington now defines ALL semi-automatic rifles as semi-automatic assault rifles.  Massachusetts went so far as to outlaw the mechanism used in AR-15’s and AK-47’s and bans any firearm that has interchangeable parts, such as the extractor or extractor assembly, with the AR-15 or AK-47. 

How many firearms in the United States are semi-automatic?  Depending on how you slice the data, you’d be looking at 100 million of the estimated 300 million, or 1/3, of all civilian owned firearms in this country.

Would an all out ban on semi-automatic firearms survive a Constitutional challenge, especially in light of the 2008 District of Columbia v. Heller decision and the “in common use at the time” test?  No, of course not. But that’s ONLY with the current makeup of the United States Supreme Court. A revamped, far left activist Supreme Court could interpret things completely differently or reverse Heller all together. 

Does it really make a difference what a little group of unknown anti-gun zealots with no knowledge of firearms says is “the most severe gun-related problem facing our society..”? Sadly, yes.  Because once the anti-gun media picks it up and spreads it around the country like it’s the most intelligent public safety idea that ever existed, it becomes mainstream thinking and sooner or later, it winds up in a new law. 

Yes, there are lawsuits being filed in every gun control state over the enactment of unconstitutional, do nothing gun control laws, but even in the absolute best of circumstances, it’s a crapshoot. The chances of getting these laws reversed is slim at best and even when they are reversed, new ones are crafted to take their place. 

The ONLY way to keep these kinds of unconstitutional laws from being enacted in the first place is to STOP electing anti-gun politicians. Regardless of how attractive their other platform items are, if they can’t support and defend the most basic elements of the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights, how are you going to trust them to do anything else? 

Meanwhile, take your vintage Mannlicher 1885 out for a shoot, while you still can. 

Bob

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Unapologetically Patriotic!

Today we celebrate the birth of our nation on July 4, 1776.  The United States of America is now 243 years old and stronger than ever.  On this day we celebrate as one people. But even as we do, we are told by the uber-politically correct that our patriotism is offensive because it is not inclusive enough. I have a simple question for these people. You do know this is the United States, the melting pot of the world, right?? 

With the exception of the Native American peoples, we are truly a nation of immigrants. This heritage has made us more diverse and stronger through the years. We are each proud of our individual cultures but even prouder of what we as a nation have become together. No matter where we came from, we are now all Americans. 

Like every other nation, our history has had its share of dark and turbulent times.  There are things we look at now and wonder how could this have happened in our land of the free? But our history is just that, history. We don’t have to be happy about the dark times, but we must be proud of how far we have come and where we are going. We cannot – and should never try to – whitewash our history away. As painful as the past may be, the only way to not repeat the past is to learn from it. 

  • Is our nation’s first flag offensive because it came from the slavery era? NO!  
  • Is hanging Old Glory offensive because it doesn’t represent all peoples? NO!
  • Is saying the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of a government meeting or function offensive because some in the room may not be citizens? NO! 
  • Is saying “U S A” at a sporting event offensive because other nations may be in attendance? NO!
  • Is listening to, singing or standing for the Star Spangled Banner offensive because someone wants a little more attention for their pathetic, self-centered life? NO! 

You want to know what is offensive? Being made to feel ashamed because you are proud of your nation and want to practice respectful actions to show your pride and patriotism. 

I am not going to hide or tone down my patriotism because someone has come up with a new trendy belief that doing so is offensive. I am proud of our Declaration of Independence and Constitution – and damn right I know the difference between them. I am proud of our Bill of Rights and will support and defend them with ever fiber of my being. This IS the United States of America and we are patriots! 

I am unapologetically patriotic!

Bob

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Do You Lock Your Doors At Night?

All parts of our country are covered by a law enforcement agency, even if they are a significant distance away. Shouldn’t that be enough to protect your home? The answer is very simply the police can’t prevent your home from being broken into.  They can only respond after the fact to investigate and attempt to bring the perpetrators to justice. That after-the-fact ‘deterrent’ is what is supposed to stop the crime from occurring. That same deterrent effect is what is supposed to be protecting you and your family from assault, rape, robbery, murder or other mayhem in public. The only thing different is you don’t have a locked door between you and criminal. 

Let’s start back at your house. What prevents burglars, robbers and home invaders from getting into your home is having a hard target. That means a house that can prevent criminals from getting in in the first place. Lights outside so their approach can be seen, cameras so they can be observed on your property, sturdy locks properly installed in heavy door jams to prevent them from getting in and alarms to alert you of their unlawful entry if they are able to get inside. These things, and many more, will help prevent the crime from being committed in the first place. 

Criminals may not be the smartest people in town, but they aren’t morons. If there’s a choice between a hard target and a nice soft, unprotected one, they’re going to pick the soft one every time. 

Now let’s talk about you and your family out in public. You don’t have a nice thick, solid core door with deadbolts to carry around with you. You have yourself and whatever you carry with you to keep you safe from harm.  That means how successful you’ll be depends a lot on your gender, size and skills. 

Sad but nonetheless true, the elderly, women and smaller statured individuals are victimized at alarming rates. Quite simply put, without an effective force multiplier, they are not able to defend themselves from larger or better-armed assailants. There are a variety of effective self-defense items available, up to and including firearms. Your choice of what would be effective depends a lot of your physical abilities. 

Even worse, far too many jurisdictions in our country say you are already adequately protected by whatever law enforcement agency is there and that you do not need to carry a firearm for protection. They say you do not have a special need or sufficient ‘just cause’ to carry a firearm. Even though it is the most effective force multiplier available, it isn’t available to you.  

Now take a look at yourself from a criminal’s point of view. Are you hard target? Do you present a confident, strong image each and every time you are in public? That doesn’t mean you walk down the street in your gi, growling at dogs and punching streetlights. It means you are engaged, alert, on the lookout for threats instead of being fully engaged in on social media on your smart phone.  How you conduct yourself is a major consideration for perspective attackers.  

Side note: If you aren’t familiar with Col. Jeff Coopers Color Codes of Awareness, I strongly encourage you to read it and get some quality self defense training. 

So what is going to prevent someone from victimizing you and your family? It’s not the police who are minutes to hours away. It’s not the prosecutor or courts who in many cases aren’t even willing to give criminals a slap on the wrist any more. It’s fear of their potential victim that will stop them. It’s the criminals fear that they will be injured or killed themselves that will keep them from attacking. 

In parts of the country where the average citizen is not legally allowed to carry a firearm for defense, there is very little to prevent them from attacking anyone they have a physical advantage over.  If they are carrying some kind of weapon – and most criminals are – then physical advantage is less important. 

It boils down to this. Your safety and the safety of your family is your responsibility. Just as the locks, lights and alarms at your home is your responsibility, so is your safety in public. If you think you can effectively delegate this to the police because you paid your taxes, you are very, very wrong. To be safe you need to have the most effective self-defense force multiplier that is right for you readily available.

Until our elected officials get off their collective asses and start working on the causes of crime like poverty, jobs and mental health, and parents return to teaching their children about right from wrong, responsibility and accountability– crime is going to continue to increase. 

YOU are the only one who can prevent yourself from being a victim. Become the hard target no criminal wants to deal with.  

Bob

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