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

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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

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

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

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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

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The Complete Failure Of Gun Control

When our nation is looking for safety, the elitist gun banning politicians always have the same answer, gun control. The problem is it never seems to be enough. No matter how much gun control they impose, there is always ‘one more law’ that will make the difference and keep people safe.  When that one inevitably fails, there is always ‘one more law’ that will do the trick. Each flawed gun control law built on all the previous failures do nothing but oppress the law-abiding, make them more vulnerable and less safe. Gun control is a complete failure. 

Whenever gun control comes up, we’re told “smart gun laws save lives” or that “Gun Free Zones don’t attract shooters, they repel them!”  Yet every time I look at the impacts of gun control laws, I see the exact opposite. 

Take a look at the most heavily gun controlled cities and states in our country. Baltimore, New York, Chicago, St Louis, Los Angeles – or most anywhere in the states they reside. The strictest, most restrictive, most draconian gun control laws in the nation are in play here. Yet, at the same time, they have the worst violence rates in the country. 

Take a look at any week in Chicago and you’ll see what can only be described as horrific body counts from “gun violence”.  And, if you think that’s bad, consider that this is just the “gun violence” numbers. Not reported here are the rest of the homicides from knives, clubs, hands and feet. Not counted are the armed robberies, aggravated assaults, rapes, burglaries or the rest of the crime so rampant in that city. Yet Chicago has among the most restrictive gun laws in the country and ZERO gun stores.  

So how do they explain this? Simple – the guns are coming from OTHER states that have less restrictive gun laws than Chicago. The current Chicago mayor, as did her predecessors, blames other states for causing Chicago’s gun violence.  The thinking is they are only as safe as the gun laws in neighboring states.  In other words, it’s not OUR fault, it’s someone else’s. We’ll just ignore the federal and state laws (in both states) that may have been broken in the process or the act of murder committed in Chicago, not the other states. 

California’s governor is also quick to blame other states for the violence in his own. After doing photo ops with young victims of violence, he also blamed the White House, the Republican Party and of course, the NRA for the violence.  It has nothing to do with his own state’s failed policies of disarming law-abiding citizens and letting violent criminals out of jail to prey upon them. It has nothing to do with ensuring more and more gun free / victim rich environments are established in the state and that less and less criminal acts will ever be prosecuted. 

The Brady United gun control group echoed the Chicago mayor’s and California governor’s blame of other states saying “California is not an island” and “they are only as strong as their neighboring states”. Perhaps all these folks need to look at actual islands and gun control to learn the truth. 

Australia and England, both islands and both with extremely strict gun control laws. Yet somehow, both continue to have severe violence  – including “gun violence” – problems.  Both continue to have new, state-of-the-art-yet-completely-illegal firearms flooding into their countries.  Go take a look at what just the City of London seizes every month and you’ll get the picture.  How is this possible??

The answer can be found in the lack of success in stemming the flow of illegal drugs. Drugs, people, merchandise – including cars, trucks and boats – are smuggled out of and into countries around the world. Do you really think smuggling firearms is going to be that difficult? 

So let’s say the gun control craze is able to take over all the neighboring states, who then will they blame? Two states over? Three states over?  Even if EVERY state gives in and the nation repeals the Second Amendment, who will they blame then when the violence doesn’t stop?  Oh I know, Mexico! Except Mexico has far stricter gun control laws than any state in this country and they have only ONE gun store in the entire country. Besides, the previous Presidential administration got Mexico to blame the US for its gun violence problem, so that’s not going to work. 

The truth is the only thing gun control laws are successful at is turning law-abiding citizens in to law-abiding victims. When you legislate away peoples rights and ability to protect themselves and their families at home and in public, while giving criminals a free pass to continue committing crimes and escalating violence with no repercussions, you are going to get exactly what you see happening – every terrorist, criminal and thug targeting your helpless residents. 

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

For all you elitist gun banning politicians, it’s time to stop lying to the people about gun control and just admit their safety means nothing to you. 

Bob

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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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Sacrificing Children For Gun Control

School is officially out for the year and everyone is diving head first into their summer plans. Something we wish our lawmakers and school administrators were doing during the summer months is making school shootings a thing of the past. Instead, come the start of the next school year, all we can expect to see is a bunch of plastic “Gun Free Zone” signs protecting our children from the next active shooter. Why? To be blunt, gun control politicians are using your children as active shooter bait. They know that when children’s lives are lost, they’ll be able to advance their completely unrelated and useless gun control agenda. 

It’s not as if the gun control politicians don’t know any better. The inconvenient truths are out there. 

  • 98% of all mass shootings in the United States since 1950 have occurred in Gun Free Zones. 
  • The duration of most mass shooting incidents is less than the average law enforcement response time, and only after the incident has been reported.
  • Gun Free Zones deny law-abiding citizens their most basic Second Amendment right to bear arms while providing absolutely no protection from predatory actors.
  • Gun Free Zones provide nothing more than a false sense of security for those who enter them.

If you don’t think these politicians understand how to make an area protected and people safe, take a look at where they work. A secure perimeter where everyone has to go through weapons screening to get in. Nobody except them, select staff and their law enforcement and armed security are allowed to possess a weapon of any kind inside. They are protected and they can protect themselves. 

Contrast this to the security situation at your local school. Thanks to the Gun-Free School Zones Act (GFSZA) of 1990, the public isn’t allowed to carry firearms at any public, private, and parochial elementary schools and high schools, and to non-private property OR within 1000 feet of them. The Federal law allows states and localities to grant exemptions to it, but states like California – which used to allow local school districts to decide if they would allow administrators, staff and teachers to be armed – has now completely outlawed the practice. 

Even in the schools that do have law enforcement officers on duty, some school districts like Baltimore, Maryland, do not allow their sworn officers to be armed. The result is sadly predictable. Unprotected schools are targeted by psychopaths who face no opposition in carrying out their plans. 

As the offices of the politicians themselves prove, this is a correctable situation. Schools can be secured, hardened against attacks and unauthorized access restricted. Armed law enforcement and security can be deployed to stop anyone who does try to harm the students and staff. As a last line of defense, volunteer administrators, staff and teachers can be vetted, trained and armed. 

Before you jump on the “teachers are there to teach not shoot” bandwagon, consider a few things:

  • With the exception of suicides or gang violence outside of school hours, no school that allows teachers to carry has experienced a death or injury from a shooting.
  • No student has ever taken a teacher’s gun. In fact, the only accidental discharge occurred outside of school hours and resulted in minor injuries for the teacher in possession of the handgun.
  • Not all teachers are interested or qualified in being armed, and nobody is going to force them to be. 

I’d also like to point out the similarities between airline pilots and teachers. At one point in time, our Federal Air Marshal program was robust and had marshals on many flights in and around our country. Over time, as the threat of hijacking diminished, the bean counters decided they were too expensive and massively cut the program. Then 9/11 happened. Only AFTER the fact, did the Air Marshals get re-staffed and returned to the skies. At the same time, airline cockpits were hardened and the Federal Flight Deck Officer program started to train pilots to carry weapons and defend aircraft against criminal activity and terrorism. 

Why did they do this? Because they knew from history what would, and has already happen. Once the initial shock and threat has faded, the bean counters started looking at the number of arrests the Air Marshals made and decided the program could again be scaled back. What remains is the piece that the airplane can’t do without, the pilot – and the hardened planes. The very same thing will happen with armed law enforcement and security personal in schools. Once the shock and threat has faded, budgets will be cut and they will be gone, but the teachers – and the hardened schools, will remain. 

Politicians and schools know how to fix this, but they are unwilling to spend the time and money to do it. The massacre at the high school in Parkland, Florida could have been stopped before it started if not for massive incompetence by federal, state, county and local authorities. The school itself had not acted on threat assessments that could have stopped or limited the loss of life. 

Instead of taking concrete steps, or allowing the school districts themselves to take concrete, proven steps to stop the violence, the gun control politicians pre-write their tweets and speeches in preparation for the inevitable next attack on soft target schools with the most vulnerable of our population waiting to become victims. They will repeat their call for laws such as universal background checks / firearms registrations, so-called assault weapons bans and myriad other useless programs that have never done and never can do anything to stop criminal or terrorist violence – or would have stopped the incident that just occurred. The ONLY impact of these gun control laws is to keep firearms out of the hands of law-abiding citizens. 

If these politicians want to “do something”, they should tackle the root causes of crime like the economy, poverty, jobs and mental health in our nation. They might also want to rethink their so-called criminal justice reform efforts that release violent criminals back onto the streets with no punishment or accountability for their actions. 

If you want to keep children safe in schools, stop electing gun control politicians who are willing to sacrifice children in the name of gun control. 

Bob

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