Goodbye California

You may have noticed the Odd Stuffing pages have been silent for a while. As some of you are aware, the Mrs. & I have recently moved out of the People’s Republik of Kalifornistan. The constant increase in prices, taxes, fees and oppressive laws aimed at the law-abiding while decreasing the consequences of violence and victimization of others, combined with the virtual elimination of the Second Amendment, had become too much for us. When the right opportunities came up for us we made the decision to join the hundreds of thousands of Californians to flee the state. Does this mean we are giving up on fighting for the Constitutionally protected rights in California? HELL NO! 

On a personal note, it was a lot more difficult to move than we imagined. Not only does 25 years together and 20 years in the same house accumulate a lot of ‘stuff’, it also accumulates a lot of very, very close friends.  And, as the Mrs. commented while taking one last drive around our neighborhood, we grew old here. 

But since we’re not dead yet, we had to consider what is best for our future.  Add to the issues listed above, California’s so-called “public safety blackouts”, known to the rest of us as the protect PG&E profit blackouts and businesses being left to fend for themselves against increasingly violent criminals with no hope of intervention by the police and courts. At the same time, your waitress is being arrested for giving customers a plastic straw without asking for it, but it’s okay to leave your used syringes everywhere. Not to worry; they’ll give you more to shoot up with for free. It’s illegal to not clean up after your dog poops in public, but it’s perfectly acceptable for you to poop on the street, sidewalk or any place else you want. In other words, California is train wreck and getting worse by the day. 

Our new home is in the Land of Enchantment. It’s a beautiful state, rich in culture and tradition, with far more Second Amendment rights than are available to those on the left coast. But… that doesn’t mean it’s going to stay that way. With a Democratic Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General and majority in both houses of the legislature, you can be sure gun control will soon be on the agenda here.

While most of the people I have spoken to here agree that firearm rights are taken very seriously here, I’m sure not everyone is aware the New Mexico Attorney General signed a letter of support for California and Vermont’s magazine restrictions.  If the New Mexico Attorney General thinks this is a really good idea in those states, how long do you think it will take before it’s a really good idea in New Mexico? 

My observations of politics have shown me politicians have two main goals once elected to public office. Get reelected and get elected to a higher office. Everything they do while in office revolves on achieving those two goals. The only way they are going to do that is to tow the party line to get the party money. And when the party platform is to enact nationwide, draconian, do-nothing-for-public-safety gun control, that’s what they are going to do. Those who choose to be moderate and not support the gun control party line are soon facing very well funded challengers from their own party who will.  That’s just the way party politics work. 

So if you look at states that are ripe for the introduction of gun control laws, New Mexico starts rising to the top of the list.  It will start slowly and cautiously as it always, but it will start. The top three low hanging fruit laws likely to be introduced first are Universal Background Checks (a ban on private party transactions), magazine capacity (reduced to the national gun control standard of 10 rounds) and so-called “red flag laws” (allowing families, employers, coworkers and the police to strip away your Second Amendment rights based on here say evidence in an ex parte hearing). Other more restrictive laws will follow in subsequent years once the ground has been broken. Then, it will be a slow but steady push towards full elimination of your rights and ability to defend yourself and your family.

Since we moved we’ve had some interesting reactions to people learning we moved from California. From what I’ve gathered, a lot of Californian’s have moved to New Mexico to flee the conditions there, then immediately started working to change New Mexico into the California they left.  I’ve had to assure many people that while I moved FROM California, I’ll be doing everything in my power to not let the state change TO California. 

Overconfidence in the current legal protections and traditions of the state is what has already doomed many formerly pro-Second Amendment states. Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Nevada and Vermont are all examples of not seeing the change coming, and now not being able to stop it.  

How do you stop it? If you think the courts are the answer, they’re not. It’s a fool’s errand to believe that once a law has been enacted, it can successfully be drawn back.  Of the thousands of gun control laws passed around the country, precious few are successfully appealed and reversed. The best way – the ONLY way to stop them is to prevent them from being enacted in the first place.  And the only one who can do that is you. 

Even if you are in the fiercest, gun loving, Second Amendment protecting part of the state, you still need to be fighting for your rights. That means getting involved in what is going on in your home town/city, county and state RIGHT NOW. If you haven’t called or written a letter to every one of your elected representatives recently, then how do they know what is important to you? You can count on the fact the gun control advocates have been speaking to them, a lot. Do you want that to be the only voice they hear? 

Your rights are in your hands. If you don’t protect them, there is a slippery slope waiting that will turn your hometown into the third world living conditions currently spreading across California. Think it can’t happen here? Californians didn’t think so either. 

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #CaliforniaGunControlScheme, #California, #NewMexico, #GunVote, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

A World Without Guns

While discussing the ever-increasing nonsensical gun laws with a close friend, we deliberated what would happen if the gun control elitists were granted their ultimate wish, to have all of the guns in the world just go away.  And while there are some pros and cons to such a question, it’s also clear the one group who would never let it happen is the same group openly advocating for it, the gun control elitists.

For a moment, let’s just imagine it was possible for all of the guns in the world to just go away. With the push of a button, each and every gun around the world immediately and permanently disappears. Guns in the hands of civilians, criminals, security guards, police, federal agents, bodyguards and the military all vanish.  The world is now free from guns. How would you feel about that?

For me, there are two answers. First off, the elimination of all guns would put everyone on a level playing field. Nobody would have a force advance over anyone else. The ability to impose your will upon someone else would revert back to close quarters impact, cutting or personal weapons.  Physical ability or superior numbers would determine dominance or the ability to resist it. In other words, that playing field isn’t as level as we might think.

And that leads to answer two. Removing all guns would mean anyone weaker or less physically capable would be even more defenseless.  Firearms allow anyone to be able to protect themselves from others of who are bigger, stronger, more physically capable or from multiple adversaries.  Naturally, the wealthy elite would still be able to build barriers and hire small armies to keep themselves safe. But removing all firearms would mean smaller individuals, or those who are older or have physical limitations, or less well off would be at a huge disadvantage attempting to defend themselves.

There was an old Western saying that “God Created Men and Sam Colt Made Them Equal”. It is no less true today than it was then. A firearm evens the force playing field in a way that no other defensive weapon can. Yes, in an completely unarmed world, there are options but all require a lifelong commitment to physical fitness and ability.

Of course, there are also many reasons why making all guns go away wouldn’t work. To begin with, the genie is already out of the bottle on how to make firearms. Someone with little mechanical ability can easily fashion a crude firearm from common components at Home Depot in an hour.  Someone with machining skills can create just about any modern firearm from raw metal.

Again, let’s imagine that at the same time you rid the world of guns you also wiped out the information and knowledge of how to build them. (Hey, you magically got rid of all guns, so is wiping everyone’s mind too much of a stretch?). You now have a clean slate to work with.  So how long do you think it would take for someone to come up with the novel idea to push a projectile with gunpowder?

But the biggest reason why even if that magic button existed that would rid the world of guns once and for all, it would never be pushed; the gun control elitists would never allow it. They realize that not only do they need their guns to protect themselves; they need them to effectively maintain control over you.  When these people talk about getting rid of guns, they are talking about getting rid of YOUR guns, not theirs.

History provides many horrific examples of what happens when a population is disarmed. Unable to defend themselves, they are easily exterminated if they do not submit to the will of their armed dictators. Venezuela is a current example of this playing out with a population unable to speak out against the abuses of the brutal totalitarian government.

Mexico is another current example of runaway gun control. So restrictive are the laws that very few Mexican citizens are able to gain the necessary permits to acquire a firearm for self-defense from the one gun store in the entire country, run by the military. Even fewer are able to use them to defend their lives, families and businesses from a unchecked criminal population with the very best weapons money can buy. All while the citizens are safely disarmed for their convenience.

There is also the one flaw with making all guns go away that nobody wants to admit. While you might eliminate ‘gun violence’, you are not going to eliminate violence. Remove one tool and another one will be used. The United Kingdom for all its claims of success against guns has seen historic rises in violent crime and victimization. Of course, the UK still has an incredible and growing illegal gun problem, but they now are imposing Knife Control laws to deal with the next category of weapons.

What has the UK not dealt with? Victims who are unable to defend themselves against criminals who continue to use illegal firearms and knives to commit their crimes – just as they always have.

Firearms are used by everyday people around our country at a rate of 3:1 over felonious uses, to the tune of approximately three million per year.  In most of these incidents, the firearm isn’t even fired. Imagine that… Just demonstrating the ability to be able to adequately defend yourself against a criminal is enough to stop the crime in its tracks.

So when someone says they think all guns should go away, remind them that there is far more good firearm use than there is bad and that if they think the world is a scary and violent place now, imagine what it would be without the ability to defend yourself against a larger, stronger or multiple criminals.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #AWorldWithoutGuns, #SelfDefense, #ColtMadeThemEqual,#mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Guns and Ballots

Tomorrow is the 2018 Midterm election and it is important to remember the critical association between firearms and ballots. Our Bill of Rights guarantees our individual right to keep and bear arms. Yet while the last four words of the 27 word Second Amendment are “shall not be infringed”, we are seeing our rights slowly and surely infringed. Backed by extremist justices intent on ignoring the Constitution in the name of social agenda.  But guess what, that’s not the way it has to be.

The proponents of gun control have been playing the very long con game all along. It always starts innocently enough with what they call “common sense”, “gun safety” or “public safety” laws that don’t significantly infringe on Second Amendment rights. Minimal infringements are thought to be acceptable as long as it advances the government interest of keeping people safe.  But of course, it never ends there. One minor infringement leads to the next, and the next and the next, since the previous gun control laws were never quite enough to achieve the public safety goals they set.

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

If you’re wondering where it ends, the answer is it only ends when there are no civilian owned firearms. Of course, even this level of gun control will never increase public safety as no set of laws is ever going to prevent criminals from breaking the law. Criminals will always be able to get and use firearms since breaking the law is the actual definition of a criminal. With an increasingly disarmed population, there is very little that will ever deter them from continuing to use guns to gain an advantage over their helpless victims.

Recently some gun control zealots have been more open about their goals. They have been publicly speaking about repealing the Second Amendment, even going so far as to have a former US Supreme Court Justice openly write about repealing the Second Amendment following the protests of children in Washington. He wrote that the concerns that brought about the Second Amendment were “…a relic of the 18th century.” Further that “a constitutional amendment to get rid of the Second Amendment would be simple and would do more to weaken the N.R.A.’s ability to stymie legislative debate and block constructive gun control legislation than any other available option.”

It’s hard to even conceive of how a former Supreme Court Justice, someone whose life has been dedicated to defending the Constitutional could abandon a foundation of our nation and even suggest that.

Yet this is the type of thinking that is now becoming more and more common in places like the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. By ignoring the Constitution, Bill of Rights, previous US Supreme Court rulings and the rule of law, they are finding these new and legally imaginative gun control laws are constitutionally valid. With very little interest from previous US Supreme Courts to revisit the Second Amendment, clearly infringing gun control laws are becoming the law of the land.

Politicians are pushing ever more repressive gun control measures while at the same time trying to block judges who will uphold the Constitution at all levels of our court system. Their goal is simple. Pass unconstitutional laws then have them legitimized by fringe justices.

Simultaneously these very same politicians are passing laws lessoning or eliminating the penalties for those who commit crimes, redefining crimes such as rape, assault with a deadly weapon and drive-by shootings as “non-violent”, eliminating bail requirements, commuting the sentences of murders to allow their release and pardoning an illegal alien convicted of kidnapping, robbery and using a firearm to prevent their deportation. THIS is the type of pubic safety they are pushing.

Firearm ownership and use isn’t the exclusive domain of any one political party or ideology; it crosses all walks of life and ways of thinking. But there is often a disconnect when it comes to defending those rights.  Many who own firearms support candidates who sponsor increasingly draconian gun control laws, even to the point where these laws will make the very firearms they own illegal and them a criminal. Whether they believe they will be (temporarily) grandfathered, they alone will be exempted or they just don’t believe it will impact them, they haven’t decided to fight for the rights they currently enjoy. Sadly, at the point where they do realize this is also their fight, there will be nobody left to stand and fight with them.

In the last few weeks the gun control lobby has essentially gone dark. They have stopped pushing their extremist agenda because they know this is a critical issue for undecided voters. They reason that if undecided voters don’t hear about a candidate’s radical gun control agenda in the run up to the elections, they’ll believe they are a more moderate candidate and their firearm rights are not in jeopardy by voting for them.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

Firearms were the tools that allowed us to have a ballot in the first place. Without them, this nation would still be an English colony instead of the republic it now is.  Now ballots are the tools that will allow us to keep our firearms. If we choose not to use our ballots to ensure the rights this country was founded on, no other right can be guaranteed.

Only your vote can defend your right to keep and bear arms. Please choose wisely.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #GunVote, #Vote, #2018Midterm, #GunRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

 

Gun Control’s End Game

One of the more popular anti-gun control posters shows pictures of people who want to take your firearms.  Among them are Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong and Pol Pot; all leaders who eventually killed significant numbers of their own unarmed citizens.  This implication is the people in our government who want to take your firearms away are following in the same footsteps as these genocidal maniacs and will exterminate large portions of the United States population. That’s probably a bit on the extreme side, but make no mistake what the goal of gun control is… control.

When our nation first emerged from English rule, the Founding Fathers wanted to ensure the new republic they created would never be able to oppress it’s own citizens like they had been oppressed under King George III. They limited the power of the government, they set up checks and balances with three branches of government, they wrote a Constitution and Bill of Rights enumerating the inalienable human rights all citizens would enjoy, preventing the government from infringing upon them.

Since then, firearms have been an integral part of the American culture. From the expansion West to hunting for sustenance to the protection of one’s life and liberty, firearms are as American as eagles, apple pie and baseball. Despite what the gun control zealots tell you, the firearm culture has been a significant part of our nation’s strength.

Still not everyone has been comfortable with the Second Amendment and the right to keep and bear arms. The history of gun control in this country has its roots in racism and class structure.  Keeping firearms out of the hands of blacks, Hispanics, Chinese – or any minority – or the poor whites denied them their own safety and the ability to resist those who held power. This was all done in the name of ‘safety’; only it was for the safety of the oppressors not the safety of the people.

Today firearm sales, possession and usage are covered by a patchwork of laws at the federal, state and local level. Decidedly liberal state and local entities are constantly increasing the level of gun control in their jurisdictions as a mechanism to stem the spiraling rate of crime and violence. Yet areas of our country with the tightest gun control laws continue to have the highest levels of crime and violence. The answer to this problem is to implement even more gun control laws.

Think about what firearms provide us with.  They allow law-abiding citizens to protect themselves and their families from those who would inflict harm upon them.  Without them, law-abiding citizens are wholly dependent on the government for their protection.

Gun control laws, laws that are supposed to increase ‘public safety’, only impact the law-abiding, never the criminals. The laws limit the type and number of firearms that can be legally purchased, the number of rounds a magazine can legally carry, the ability of a law-abiding citizen to carry a firearm and where they can legally carry it and how a firearm can be legally stored and transported, among many other restrictions. The penalties for breaking these laws and ordinances are supposed to be a deterrent for any would be criminal. Yet somehow, the criminals still ignore them.

Why is very easy to understand. For a criminal, the gun is the tool of their trade, the ability to subject their will upon another. Whether the motivation is murder, robbery, assault, rape, intimidation or terror, the insignificant additional penalty of carrying a loaded firearm in public pales in comparison to the crime they are going to commit or the protection they desire from victims who choose to fight back.

At the same time gun control laws are being tightened, the penalties for crime are being reduced or eliminated and more and more criminals are being released early from jails and prisons to prey upon increasingly unarmed citizens. Crime goes up, even as the new math to calculate crime rate shows it decreasing.

Gun control promises to keep you safe from the horrors of “gun violence”. The simple truth is “gun violence” isn’t the problem; only violence. Guns are simply tools used in violence, and they aren’t even the most common ones used.  Knives and cutting instruments kill four times as many people annually as so-called “assault weapons”.  Suicides count for two-thirds of the deaths attributed to “gun violence” – in other words, violence directed towards yourself rather than another.

So if the so-called public safety laws do nothing to increase public safety, why have them? The answer is simply control.  An unarmed, frightened populace is far more willing to pay more, submit to more government regulation and control in order to ‘feel safe’, even if their safety is less assured now than it ever was.

Being safe is more important than someone’s false sense of feeling safe. Every year in this country, firearms are used lawfully to defend life at a rate of three to one felonious uses. Yet the ever-increasing gun control laws target the law-abiding citizen’s ability to own and use a firearm to defend themselves and their family.

I’m not dark minded enough to believe the current authors, promoters and supporters of gun control laws in our country intend to exterminate large numbers of the United States population who disagree with their politics. However I do firmly believe they intend to use gun control as a mechanism to eliminate self-reliance, personal safety outside of the control of government and impose increased level of control upon a vulnerable population.

I choose to not be vulnerable.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #GunVote, #Vote, #2018Midterm, #GunRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Vote For Me, I Own A Gun!

With the midterm elections just 15 days away, candidates have been ramping up the rhetoric and political posturing like never before.  For those of us in the Second Amendment community, there are some tough choices to be made. When it comes to the Second Amendment, many gun control candidates are tempering their message so as to appeal to their pro-gun constituents. But let’s not forget what their real goal is… to take away your right to purchase, posses and carry firearms.

From my own local city council to the county, state and federal representatives around the country, I’ve seen and heard preposterous claims of support for the Second Amendment from absolutely hard-core gun control candidates. They make statements like ‘I’m a life long gun owner’, ‘I’m a hunter’ or ‘I grew up in a family of gun owners’. By trying to paint themselves as part of the firearm community they attempt to make themselves more attractive to firearm owners who are concerned about more irresponsible, ineffective and unconstitutional gun control laws.

Ever since the absolutely ridiculous picture of the 44thPresident of the United States shooting a shotgun, politicians have put out campaign ads to bolster their firearm credibility. We’ve seen them in hunting orange holding a rifle. You’ve seen them holding a handgun at a shooting range. You’ve seen them holding a shotgun in a picturesque wildlife habitat. Guess what, it’s all staged bullshit.

Off camera and away from their constituents scrutiny, these candidates continue to promise to take up the most stringent of gun control schemes in exchange for the financial support from the billionaire funded gun control organizations.  Hot mic captured comments often portray a very different view from the campaign promises. This is where you hear how the gun control organizations are coaching their candidates to keep their gun control plans to themselves during the elections in order to get elected.

And of course, there are the qualifiers to their support for the Second Amendment. They generally follow-up the “I support the Second Amendment” with statements like “but I also support reasonable, common sense gun safety measures”.  The Democratic candidate for governor in Alabama follows up his claim of being “pro-Second Amendment” with this:

“[L]et me make my position clear. I will never favor taking any existing constitutional right away from any American unless we, as a people, come to the conclusion that restraint of some rights helps ensure the pursuit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness by all.”

Does this sound like someone who is going to be protecting your Second Amendment rights?

Whenever you hear the words “gun safety”, realize they are not talking about being safe with firearms; they are talking about imposing draconian legal restrictions on the lawful ownership of firearms. To the gun control zealots, there is no such thing as a ‘safe’ firearm in the hands of the civilian population. Their idea of “gun safety” is when legal ownership of firearms is abolished.  The end goal has always been to slowly and systematically eliminate the right of private citizens to purchase, posses and carry firearm and ammunition.

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

So, who are the real Second Amendment candidates? These are the men and women who have been involved in Second Amendment rights BEFORE they became a candidate for public office. They are the ones who’ve had a hunting license EVERY year, not just election years. They are the ones you’ve been seeing at the local range or gun shop for years, not just since they declared their candidacy. They are the ones who already knew the issues and challenges surrounding the Second Amendment community BEFORE they decided to run for public office.  They are the ones who can proudly say “I support the Second Amendment” with no qualifying statements after it.

At times I’ve been accused of being a one-issue voter, the issue being the Second Amendment. Quite honestly, I’m okay with that because without the basic rights and freedoms protected by our Constitution and Bill of Rights, nothing else is going to stand.

Every elected seat in every city, county, state and federal race is important for the protection of your Second Amendment rights. It doesn’t matter if you live in a constitutionally challenged area or free America, your vote matters.

The midterm elections are Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Choose wisely.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #GunVote, #Vote, #2018Midterm, #GunRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

2nd Amendment: Not For Those Under 21

With a few strokes of his pen, California’s Governor decided the Second Amendment no longer applies to residents under the age of 21. With this, California becomes just the latest state to strip away rights from 18, 19 & 20 year olds that have never committed a crime or intended to do so.  How easily we forget the United States Constitution no longer applies here in Kalifornistan.

Following the lead of other states after the tragic shooting in Parkland, Florida, California has determined the only remedy (other than all the other ones they implemented for this purpose) that would have prevented the loss of life in Florida. Therefore, the risk of allowing 18, 19 & 20 year olds to have firearms is just too great and this ‘minor’ infringement is acceptable. Never mind the fact that anyone of ages 18, 19 & 20 is old enough to vote, get married, sign contracts or join the military. In California, they are now not old enough to own a firearm.

The Second Amendment guarantees the right to bear arms. The entire legal argument of restricting handgun purchases to those 21 and older is that this did not violate the Constitutional rights of anyone under 21 since they still could purchase, possess and use rifles, shotguns and ammunition. By now eliminating that right, as private companies, municipalities, states and the nation are now beginning to do, it is a clear-cut violation of the rights of 18, 19 & 20 year olds.

18, 19 & 20 year old adults make up less than 8 percent of our population. And while many claim this age group is more involved in politics than ever, they also vote at the lowest rate of any age group. That makes them an easy segment of society to target.

But being California, there are exceptions – otherwise known as deferred bans – to this rule.  The exemptions are for law enforcement, the military and those with a valid hunting license.  The first two are easy to understand. Unless you carve out exemptions for law enforcement and military, you risk backlash for all your other so-called ‘public safety’ laws, which naturally also exempt law enforcement and military. But why then an exemption for those who have a hunting license?

The hunting license exemption serves a couple of purposes. First, it allows the State to claim there isn’t an all out ban on 18, 19 & 20 year olds owning firearms, thus satisfying the Constitutional requirement of not banning all firearm ownership. Second, and just as importantly, it helps to further the false narrative that the Second Amendment is about hunting.

Our last Presidential election was full of false claims of support for the Second Amendment. It was always ‘I support the Second Amendment but…. ‘ where the but was generally a call for infringing on that Second Amendment right with “reasonable, common sense” gun control measures. Then of course, there was the pledge of support for hunting. Even though most gun control elitists abhor hunting, they conceded that hunting is a long held tradition in our country and until they regulate it out of existence, they’ll support it as a valid reason to own a firearm under the Second Amendment.  Of course, self-defense will never be a valid reason to the gun control zealots.

The Second Amendment was never about protecting the rights of hunters or having a “valid reason” to own, posses or carry a firearm.  The Second Amendment was written to preserve the preexisting, inalienable right to possess and bear arms – period. It was written as a limitation on the government, not on the individual, hence the terminology used is “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

For those of you wondering why the fight for the latest appointment to the Supreme Court has been so important, I’ll remind you to take a look at laws like this. Denying an entire class of law-abiding people their Second Amendment rights because of the actions of a deranged individual – unless they have a hunting license – is not constitutionally valid.

The first of what I hope is many lawsuits against these unconstitutional laws have already started their way through the lower courts on their way to a Supreme Court who may now be receptive to hearing it. At the same time, lets also hope that every firearm and hunter education trainer out there is planning an expanded schedule to help our 18, 19 & 20 year olds obtain their hunting licenses so they can continue to exercise their right to bear arms while this is sorted out.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #CaliforniaGunControlScheme, #HuntingLicense, #FirearmTraining, #HunterEducation, #YoungAdultRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Modern Jurisprudence – What’s At Stake?

I’ve purposely held off writing about the Supreme Court nominee hearings as it has been such a divisive spectacle and I thought it would be best to wait until the process had wound up.  With the 114th Justice of the Supreme Court now confirmed and sworn in by the Chief Justice, I want to say a few words about this process and why this seat has been so contentious.

To understand why this Supreme Court nomination was such a big deal; you have to look at who was being replaced.  Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy was often seen as the swing vote between the liberal and conservative justices on the bench.  He most often sided with the liberal justices, which skewed the court more to the left.

Of course, the whole idea of liberal and conservative justices on the Supreme Court is an abomination in the first place. There should be no political skew in either direction. There should be no other consideration at play other than the Constitution and the law.  By the time any case reaches the highest court in the land, politics and the justices’ personal views should be long gone and only the law should enter into their decisions.  Sadly, this is no longer the case and ‘legal’ decisions that should be 9-0 are now split along political lines.

With that in mind, you can see how any non-liberal appointee to the court would be a threat to the left. The ability of politicians to impose new and constitutionally ‘flexible’ laws would be dramatically curtailed with a Supreme Court that would apply proper Constitutional standards to the case, to say nothing of simply hearing them in the first place, something the Court has not been willing to do.

Stop and think about how many cases just related to the Second Amendment the Court has rejected because it didn’t have enough votes to hear it. This has resulted in conflicts between the Circuits and left standing abhorrent rulings from the runaway Ninth Circuit. With a Supreme Court unwilling to step in, the Circuit Courts have been ignoring legal procedure and precedent and unconstitutional laws have become the defacto law of the land.

Given the politics involved, you can see why the thought of a more conservative justice, or simply one who deeply respects the Constitution and the rule of law would be a threat to a particular agenda. The stage was therefore set for the media spectacle that followed.

Even before the nominee’s name was announced, opposition statements were crafted, speeches were written, signs made up and counter arguments against the nominee’s record created – all with a blank spot left for the name to be filled in.  It didn’t matter who the nominee was, it only mattered that the nominee wasn’t someone they approved of. Once the name was announced, dire predictions that his confirmation would kill millions of Americans, implement Sharia law, ban contraception, reduce wages and destroy voting rights were spread.

The meetings and hearings that followed were filled with arguments against the nominee’s record and views. Opposition Senators called for a delay until after the mid-term elections with the hopes they would be able to take back control of the Senate and block the nominee. They staged highly coordinated and choreographed interruptions and protests to delay the confirmation hearings beyond the start of the Supreme Court opening and the end of the Senate calendar.

Then, with all written questions answered, individual meetings with all of the Senators conducted, the public and private hearings concluded and all of the delay tactics failed, and only then – did allegation of sexual assault emerge through leaks to the media of an allegation known long in advance of any of the Senate hearings.

What followed was a media fueled mass hysteria and more ‘spontaneous’ allegations of far fetched, unprovable and eventually discredited misconduct. The nominee had to prove his innocence because his past judicial opinions were enough to strip him of his Constitutional rights and presumption of innocence. If you supported the nominee, you hated all women and supported rape. Yet the objective of this tactic was the same – to add more hurdles to delay the confirmation.

With no substantiations to the allegations found in the supplemental background investigation, the investigation itself became the target as the strategy now shifted to the nominee’s ‘stability’ from his last testimony before the Senate Judiciary committee. Now with the confirmation concluded, the strategy has once again shifted to impeachment proceedings as soon as the Democratic Party wins a majority in the House of Representatives.

If you would like to see an excellent speech on the nominee and what transpired through the Senate hearings, I suggest the floor speech of Maine Senator Susan Collins.  I’m normally not a fan of Senator Collins and I more often than not disagree with her politics and tactics, however her speech was probably the most well reasoned and articulated I heard throughout this whole debacle. The speech is 45 minutes long, but it is well worth the time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXzzmjgyO9k

While the politically staged national outrage of a new Associate Supreme Court Justice who is still accused of being a “serial rapist” continues to be fed by the political puppet masters and media outlets, where are the Senators who championed these protests? Are they advocating for the voices and rights of victims of sexual assaults? Hell no! They’ve moved their mock protests onto their own reelection or pre-Presidential campaigns. Instead of asking for donations to the organizations that aid survivors of sexual assault, exploitation and domestic violence, they are using these allegations to fill the coffers of their own campaign accounts.

Despite what the media has been feeding to millions of impassioned and impressionable Americans, this whole farce of our political and judicial appointment process was never about women’s rights or believing the victims of sexual assault. It was simply a political strategy to discredit a nominee and delay his confirmation until after the Mid-Term elections.

Sadly, the unintended consequences from this disgusting display of partisan politics will haunt us for years. Sexual assault victims may be less likely to come forward knowing they may be judged in the context of the accusers from the Supreme Court nominee’s hearings. Highly qualified judges and others in the political arena may also be less likely to seek public office knowing the potential of having to prove their innocence against anonymous and unsubstantiated allegations about their distant past.

For all those who have protested against politicians, judges and anyone else who doesn’t support their view of this issue, what have you done to help? Here’s a hint, screaming in someone’s face at the top of your lungs isn’t helping; it just makes you look like a kook.

Instead, how about doing something positive? How about donating your time or money to your local rape crisis center? How about sponsoring self-defense classes for women? How about helping provide positive alternative activities to teen drinking parties? How about helping parents be positive, respectful role models to their families? How about teaching your own children to respect women so rape and violence can be a thing of the past.

Among the most telling arguments was that this nominee would threaten our nation’s modern jurisprudence. In other words, it would inhibit the unchecked ability of judges to legislate from the bench while ignoring legal precedent, judicial procedure and the Constitution. I certainly hope that is true.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControl, #SCOTUS, #Senate, #VictimsOfCrime, #SupportLocalRapeCrisisCenters, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

No Easy Button For Infringing on Second Amendment Rights

California’s Governor recently vetoed for the second time a massive expansion of the state’s Gun Violence Restraining Order (GVRO), or so-called “Red Flag” laws.  He did sign other useless gun control measures, including a couple of minor additions to the GVRO law, but not this one.  While some are calling it a victory, I call it sad that we are celebrating when only minor incremental infringements on our Second Amendment rights are signed into law.

I’ve ranted about this before, the first time imbecilic bill crossed the governor’s desk.  This year’s version was no different.  The vetoed legislation would have expanded the list of who can secretly petition the courts to confiscate all your firearms and ammunition without your knowledge or ability to contest it ahead of time. The expanded list would have included employers, co-workers, teachers, professors and ANY other employees of secondary and post-secondary schools the person has attended in the last six months.

Pushing for these so-called Red Flag laws have become popular gun control tactics since the shootings in Las Vegas and Parkland, Florida. Using Las Vegas and Parkland as their rally cry, proponents claim that had these laws been in place then they could have stopped these events from every happening.  In other words, lies.

Las Vegas is easy; there were no red flags. Nobody in this sicko’s circle of family or friends had any inkling of any of his intentions to harm anyone else. Even after a year of investigation by local, state and federal authorities, no motivation has been found. The only ‘odd behavior’ anyone can come up with is legal purchases of firearms and ammunition.  But then, that’s kind of the point. He was legally purchasing firearms and ammunition, something the gun control fanatics think is a positive indication of future violence.

Parkland of course is another story.  There were so many missed opportunities to stop this from ever happening it is absolutely nauseating. The Broward County Sheriff’s Office had received literally dozens of complaints about the suspect in the years leading up to the shooting. Any number of them in and of itself would have been sufficient to charge him criminally. The FBI ignored two credible reports identifying the suspect by name where he claimed “I’m going to be a professional school shooter.” The Florida Department of Children & Families determined he was receiving adequate support from his school and outpatient care from Henderson Behavioral Health in Broward County. A team from Henderson found the suspect “stable enough not to be hospitalized.”

The Parkland school’s progressive anti-disciplinary polices could have removed him from the school and initiated criminal proceedings numerous times, but that would have made the school look bad. The school had even commissioned and received it’s own threat assessment of the facilities ahead of the incident, and chose not to act on them.  In the moments leading up to the shooting itself the school security guard who saw the suspect going into the school did not sound the alarm and a second guard locked himself in a closet.  And of course, when the shooting began, responding Broward County Sherriff’s deputies cowardly hid outside instead of going to confront the shooter.

So you tell me. Does it look like nothing could have been done to stop this incident without some new law? Given the utter incompetence of the agencies involved – the very same agencies who are claiming they did everything by the book and couldn’t have done anything to stop the shooting without a new so-called Red Flag law – wouldn’t screw up that as well?

All of these laws relate back to the 2014 Isla Vista, CA attack that resulted in six dead (three from stabbing) and 14 injured near the University of California, Santa Barbara. Much like Parkland, all of the information necessary to make an appropriate interdiction was there; it was just ignored. Now as a result of the inept police work of the multiple agencies involved, we now have new and improved ways to strip people of their Constitutional rights.

The basis to initiate firearm confiscations under the so-called Red Flag laws were set purposefully low. It can be as simple as conversation between two people where one hears what they think is someone contemplating suicide or violence towards others. Following the ex parte hearing, all firearms, ammunition and magazines – magazines just added by the California Governor – are confiscated. The order may now be issued verbally by the Judge, the other new addition to the law.

As is the latest fad, the person accused, the one who had their firearms confiscated now has the burden of proof to show they are innocent and not a threat to others. Legal costs, time and wages lost from work, mental health evaluations, costs related to the return of their property – if the law enforcement agency will even return it after a legal order to do so – are all born by the person accused, even if accused unjustly. The legal recourse for being falsely accused is of course up to the very same people who are advocating for the removal of your firearms in the first place.

Why should it be easy to strip away someone else’s constitutionally protected rights? Why should anyone have such as low burden of proof to strip you of your Second Amendment rights in secret? Why should the person accused then be responsible for proving their innocence to avoid permanent infringement of their rights?  Why should they be financially responsible for the costs incurred by someone else’s accusations?

GVRO’s are nothing more than an Easy Button for gun control fanatics who don’t believe anyone other than themselves should have firearms.  Stripping away someone’s firearm rights, even temporarily, should be hard as hell. It should require no less burden of proof than a criminal conviction. Yet to compensate for the inadequacies of investigatory prowess at all levels of government, we grant them the easy way out.

At the same time, nobody seems to want to address the amount of crime, the amount of violence or the number of suicides committed with weapons other than firearms. If you were really interested in saving lives or public safety, wouldn’t you address the actual behaviors and indicators for ALL violence?  It’s as if your life doesn’t matter unless you are killed by a gun.

So while the celebrations continue for the brief moment of sanity from California’s Governor, consider this. This massive expansion bill has come from the legislature twice before and with sparse opposition to stop it; it will be back on the Governor’s desk again next year.  With California’s Lt Governor’s coronation to the big chair virtually assured in this year’s mid term elections, what do you think the chances that one of the biggest gun control advocates in the history of state will veto it?

Maybe it’s time you got out to vote.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #CaliforniaGunControlScheme, #GunViolenceRestrainingOrder, #RedFlag, #GunControl, #Vote, #GunVote, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

The Second Amendment – A Second Class Right

When we think about the foundations of our nation, we naturally think about the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Yet sadly, not everyone believes in these documents relevance today. Nowhere is this more evident than in the obstructionist view of the Second Amendment.  It has been called irrelevant, misunderstood and out of date for the modern world. Slowly but surely, the Second Amendment has become the redheaded stepchild of the nation.

Picking the Second Amendment apart isn’t a new thing, but it has become far more fashionable since the Heller and McDonald Supreme Court decisions. The gun control extremists even claim it was these two court decisions that gave individuals the right to own a firearm, instead of what they really were – decisions affirming the individual right always existed and it just took that long for an infringement case to get to the Supreme Court.

Still, that doesn’t stop the gun control crowd from claiming the Second Amendment to mean you can only bear arms while in the state sponsored militia, the modern day National Guard.  History of course doesn’t support this creative reinterpretation when in fact every able bodied man of the time was part of the militia of the day, some well organized, some not so much. The common defense of self, home and community was just part of being in the community.

One of the most popular Second Amendment attacks is that it only grants you the right to bear arms that were available at the time, in other words muskets.  The rational is that there is no way the Founding Fathers could have foreseen the type of modern weaponry we have today. Again, the argument completely ignores history and that there were far more advanced weaponry available when the Second Amendment was written. It’s also important to remember that muskets WERE the “weapons of war” of the day. The United States and British troops were issued muskets to go into battle with, clearly a point well understood when the Second Amendment was written.

Then of course there is the interpretation that the Second Amendment only covers hunting, and therefore is invalid in modern times when sustenance can be purchased from a grocery store. Only in rural areas do the gun control zealots concede the tradition of hunting should be tolerated, and even there they are trying to regulate hunting out of existence. Hunting might have been a more essential skill at the early years of our country, but nowhere in the Second Amendment text does it say or even imply hunting for food.

Even more creative are the recent additions to the ‘not covered by the Second Amendment’ crowd’s argument. This includes saying  “arms” does not include ammunition or magazines.  While it boggles the mind that someone would try to separate the fact that arms use ammunition and that it’s okay to infringe on the right to possess the very item the arms were intended to fire. The same illogic is extended to magazines. This historical equivalent to a modern magazine limitation would be that you could only possess a small power horn or tiny cartridge box with your musket.

Modern gun control elitists also contend the Second Amendment does not include the right to sell or purchase firearms. This is the main argument for banning firearms retailers in NIMBY (Not In My Backyard) communities.  So while the local government proudly says they “support the Second Amendment, but…” the but includes many limitations and exceptions where they feel it is okay for them to regulate firearms retailers out of existence. Absolutely unsupported “safety” guidelines of not being within 500 feet of places like residential areas, parks, schools, day cares, another firearm retailer or so-called “high risk alcohol outlets” are designed to eliminate the ability for stores to operate in their area.

The latest trend is to subject firearms retailers to a Conditional Use Permit application. With this new costly and protracted bureaucratic process, a city or county has unlimited discretion to approve or deny a new firearm retailer’s application based on an undefined and arbitrary “fit” to the community and perceived impact to the surrounding properties. The notification portion of the process also ensures the NIMBY’s from inside and outside the community will mount a popularity contest to the Planning Commission to determine if a legally responsible retailer should be allowed to operate, simply because they do not like firearms and don’t believe they should be allowed in the community.

If that’s where gun control has been and where we are now, a hint into the future comes from the confirmation hearing of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. California’s Senior Senator argued that common possession does not equal common use as describe by the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s writing of the majority opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller. Here he wrote the Second Amendment protected the sort of weapons “in common use at the time.”  The Senator’s direct quote was “You’re saying the numbers determine common use? Common use is an activity. It’s not common storage or possession, it’s use. So what you said is that these weapons are commonly used. They’re not.”

This sets up all kinds of new legal buffoonery. In highly gun controlled states like California, New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey, among others, will they be able to argue that so-called “assault weapons”, which are highly regulated or even outlawed, are no longer in “common use” there? If you possess but don’t regularly “use” your firearm, does the Second Amendment not cover it? And what would be a fair test of “use”? If you use your firearm for self defense like the approximately three million others in the United States every year but don’t fire it, is that enough “use”?

While the Second Amendment has been beaten up, carved into pieces, minimized, misunderstood and creatively reinterpreted, it has survived to this day – at least in most of the country. In other areas such as my current home state of California, it is a mere shadow of what it once was and getting dimmer and dimmer every day.

Unless we are out protecting it and ensuring our elected representatives will no longer stand for the incremental elimination of our rights, the Second Amendment will fall. It’s on all of us to stand up and be counted before we have no rights to fight for.

Bob

#oddstuffing,  #DeclarationOfIndependance, #Constitution, #BillOfRights, #SecondAmendment, #GunControlFails, #GunVote, #GunRights, #mewe, #medium, #oddstuffing.com

Vote Early, Vote Often

Ahh, the end of the election season. Never is there more information being pushed at us from all angles than by people demanding our vote. We get commercials, snail mail, email and banner ads in all our browsers and social media. We have billboards, banners and signs of all shapes and sizes along our drive home. We get knocks on our door, we get calls on our phones, we get everyone we know pushing an agenda that, if we had any ‘common sense’ at all, we would wholeheartedly agree with and vote the way they want us to. If the past two years hasn’t made you want to move to that little off-grid cabin in the woods, nothing will.

First, let’s set things straight about the news media. There is no such thing as impartiality any more. The days of being able to trust what you hear on the network news died with Uncle Walter. Everyone has an agenda or angle to push. Consider this when you see only glowing, positive stories about one side of an issue, and hateful, negative stories about the other side. Just look at the photos of candidates they publish. Supported candidates have nicely composed and dignified looking pictures. Opposition candidates look like they’re about to sacrifice a goat. That’s not journalism, that’s just supermarket tabloid trash. I’d like to think we are better than that.

Then there are the so-called ‘truth’ sites that claim to expose what’s really going on in whatever it is they oppose. More times than not, it’s an isolated fact or opinion that’s expanded upon with more and more conjecture until the end result is SPECTACULAR!! If this is true, then this must be true, which makes this true and this true and this true! I call this compounding idiocy and it seems to be the driving force behind too many stories.

Of course, there are the satire news outlets that take a snippet of real news and turn it into an entertaining parody. Taken as intended, they are pretty damn funny. Sadly, some of our elected officials and professional journalists have been duped into believing these stories are true and shared them as facts that prove their particular point of view. I suppose that in and of itself is even more amusing than the original spoof.

The good news is tomorrow is Election Day. Nationally we’ll be choosing a President and Vice President, as well as the direction of our Supreme Court for at least the next two generations. We’re choosing the majority rule of our Senate and House of Representatives. Closer to home we are deciding everything from Governors, state representatives, county and city council members, school, fire, water and everything else boards. We’ll be deciding on what we want to be taxed on, and how much and what will be legal and illegal in our states and home towns.

Arguments about the Electoral College aside; our vote is the single most important part of our representative democracy. This is how we hold our government responsible for what they do. If we don’t make an informed decision about what we are voting for, or worse – don’t even participate; we are giving up our say in our country and our lives. Every vote in every election really does count.

In the final 24 hours before voting begins, you can expect a litany of sensational stories and last minute pleas to sway your vote. A lot of it will be crap meant to inflame our emotions and distract us from what is really important. If you look close enough, and generally in the opposite direction, you’ll find what you really need to pay attention to.

For those of you who have already voted by absentee or mail in ballot, I thank you. I may not agree with what you voted for, but I respect you for actively participating. For those of you who will be headed to the polls tomorrow, know that stepping into that voting booth and making your selections is the cornerstone of the American democratic system. It is a privilege envied by many around the world who do not have this right.

Lastly, even though the Cubs have just won the World Series, this isn’t Chicago in early 1900’s. Vote early, but please vote only once.

Bob

#oddstuffing, #2016elections, #gunvote, #voteearlyvoteoften, #ivoted, #mewe, #oddstuffing.com