Tyranny – Closer Than You Think

Here in the United States, we often think of ourselves as being immune from tyranny. We sit comfortably knowing our nation freed itself from a tyrannical government and our Constitution and Bill of Rights will protect us. Unfortunately, it’s not quite that easy. A Ronald Regan quote helps to put it in perspective. “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” Those who would oppress us are actively working to take our rights and freedoms away. And, like before, during the time of our revolution, they are the very same ones in charge of protecting our rights. 

Tyranny doesn’t generally occur overnight. Unless you’ve been conquered by force, it’s going to be a slow yet deliberate process. After all, it’s much easier to subjugate a population a little at a time. And it’s so much easier if you can convince the masses that the slight infringements in their rights are in the best interest of all. Wouldn’t you want to give up a little bit of your own individual rights if it meant society would be safer? Wouldn’t your life be better if you let the government take care of more things? Wouldn’t you want to contribute more so that your community would provide for everyone? 

Take a look at the modernized Communist Rules for Revolution for an example of how this is done. 

1) Healthcare: Control healthcare and you control the people.

2) Poverty: Increase the Poverty level as high as possible, poor people are easier to control and will not fight back if you are providing everything for them to live.

3) Debt:  Increase the debt to an unsustainable level. That way you are able to increase taxes, and this will produce more poverty.

4) Gun Control: Remove the ability to defend themselves from the Government. That way you are able to create a police state.

5) Welfare:  Take control of every aspect of their lives (Food, Housing, and Income).

6) Education: Take control of what people read and listen to — take control of what children learn in school.

7) Religion: Remove the belief in the God from the Government and schools.

8) Class Warfare:  Divide the people into the wealthy and the poor. This will cause more discontent and it will be easier to take (Tax) the wealthy with the support of the poor.

While these steps are pretty clear, I’m going to contend there is a prerequisite in order to accomplish this list, the full control of the government. And control doesn’t just mean having one party in complete control, it means the government has set itself up as a privileged entity with rights, benefits and protections not available to the regular public. 

Take a look at our current federal government. Members of congress enjoy salary, vacation and retirement, weakened insider trading restrictions and many other perks not commonly available to the general public. And, they themselves are in complete control over raises and increase in perks. With no term limits for members of congress, they are free to build their government service into virtual lifetime positions. 

But it’s not just our congress that protects its own interests above that of the people it represents. As examples: California’s primary and general elections have been tweaked to the point where the party in charge is ensured of remaining in charge. Virginia’s legislature responded to the Second Amendment protests and calls to replace their representatives by proposing changing the law governing recalls. Instead of requiring 10% of number who voted in the last election, it would require 25% and must be completed within 60 days. 

Control of the courts is also vital. With our three separate branches of government – executive, legislative and judicial – the courts are supposed to be the independent arbitrator of facts and interpreters of the Constitution. Sadly, this is no longer true. Judicial appointments are made to those who will carry out the will of the politicians who appoint them. These activist politicians-in-robes are in place to approve to any law created by politicians who appointed them, regardless of legal precedent or even Supreme Court rulings. Look no further than the history of the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, representing the western United States for vivid examples of judicial activism run amuck. 

This year’s all-out assault on the Second Amendment in places like Virginia, Vermont, New Mexico, California, Hawaii and all points in between have clearly demonstrated our elected officials have no interest in representing our needs, only the agendas set by deep pocketed special interests. We’ve witnessed the hubris of representatives who have used their positions to retaliate against communities and law enforcement officials who have taken a stand against them.  

At the same time, we’ve also seen the results of the pressure brought by masses with representatives voting against draconian gun control laws they once supported. Those results, even if few and far between, are the encouraging news.  We The People still have a measure of control over our own government, if we choose to use it. 

We The People get to decide what kind of government we have and who represents us, IF we stand together and participate.  Tyranny isn’t that far behind us and right now, our best means of defense is our vote.  Make your vote count this year. 

Bob

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Power To The People

This past year has seen an unprecedented number of gun control bills submitted around the country. While another year of gun control laws that do nothing but punish the law-abiding is nothing new in the nanny states, even traditionally firearm friendly states have seen an influx. Why is quite simple. Politicians put in place by big money special interests are ignoring their constituents and their oaths of office and peddling unconstitutional laws. But guess what? The people are standing up and standing together to say no. And it is working. Draconian gun control bills are being altered, tabled, shelved and defeated. What could be more patriotic than the people taking control of their representatives and their government? But there is still a long way to go. 

If you live in states like California, New York, New Jersey or Massachusetts, you’ve probably grown used to seeing a new crop of gun control laws come out every year. Sold to the public as laws that are “common sense”, will “save lives” or to close “dangerous loopholes” in existing laws, they build on the already oppressive laws that do absolutely nothing to promote public safety. In reality, they make the public more vulnerable to crime and violence. Yet with each additional law, more restrictions and more costs are put on law-abiding citizens. 

But even outside the most restrictive states, extremist politicians swept into office in 2018 by those big money special interests have been busy paying off their debt by introducing anti-Second Amendment bills. Some highlights: 

Arizona: Assault weapon and “high-capacity” magazine ban, firearm registration and transport restrictions 
Nebraska: Proposed waiting period for firearm sales and universal background checks
Maryland: Proposed home firearm storage (unloaded AND locked) and new firearm dealer monitoring requirements
Hawaii: Ammunition purchases limited to calibers of registered firearms
Washington: Ban on “high-capacity” magazines and concealed carry training requirements
New Mexico: A so-called “red flag” law
Connecticut: A 35% tax on ammunition 
Vermont: A 30-day proceed on firearms purchases (vs. the federal three-day default), a ban on carrying semi-automatic firearms in most public places, expanding the “red flag” law
Rhode Island: Assault weapon, “high-capacity” magazine and 3D gun ban 
Virginia: Assault weapon, “high-capacity” magazine, suppressor and 3D gun ban, universal background checks, limit of one handgun per month, “red flag” law, removing state preeminence for firearm laws

Keep in mind this is not an exhaustive list. It is simply a sampling from around the country. When you start looking at what is being proposed in the various communities and state legislatures around the country, you start to get a sense of how expansive the assault on our Second Amendment rights really is. And like most things, if you follow the money it leads back to the usual suspects, the fringe left wing extremists funded by billionaire money. 

So how about some good news?  Law-abiding citizens from all walks of life and every demographic imaginable are standing together to fight back against these Second Amendment infringing laws. They are gathering at state houses around the country by the thousands to peacefully protest and let their representatives know they do NOT support these proposed laws. 

Whole communities in states all over the country are banding together to declare themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries. County sheriffs and law enforcement officers are standing up WITH and leading their communities in opposition, even as they themselves are targeted by the rouge anti-gun legislators.  

And it is working.  Not everywhere and not on all bills, but cracks in the gun control foundation are forming and these new gun control laws are being defeated. 

Despite what the media is telling you, Second Amendment protected firearm rights is not a red vs. blue thing. It’s not a rural vs. urban thing. It’s not how much someone makes or the color of their skin. It’s about natural rights for all United States citizens. And that is why protest rallies don’t just represent one part of the population, they represent everyone. 

THIS is why the cracks in the gun control foundation have formed. Representatives are starting to realize they need to be accountable to their constituents in order to keep their jobs. And the people are pissed! Those special interest dollars aren’t going to do a damn thing for them when voters band together to replace them. 

If nothing else, this year’s assault on our Second Amendment rights has gotten people off the sidelines. They are realizing the power of the people who stand together and fight for a common goal. 

Every elected seat at every level in every community in every state makes a difference. Only by standing together to protect our rights will we be able to counter the fringe special interest dollars trying to alter our communities to put their needs above ours. 

Bob

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New Mexico’s Red Flag Disgrace

New Mexico’s version of the so-called “Red Flag” law (SB5) passed the House last Thursday and is now awaiting the Governor’s signature to become law.  And what a sad, sad spectacle it was.  This law breaks new ground in the nation including never before seen provisions designed to punish law enforcement for noncompliance, expanding the definition of who can petition for an Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order as well as completely giving up any resemblance of being concerned with public safety.  Still, if any version was going to pass and become law in New Mexico, I’m glad it was this one.  Why? That’s simple. This law removes any shadow of a doubt that the purpose behind it is purely about government gun control and nothing else.  Hopefully this will be what unites the New Mexico’s citizens to take back control of their government from the special interest groups. 

The scene that played out in the Roundhouse on Thursday shows how little our current government cares about public safety.  Aside from the live feed inexplicably going out during the final hearings, the Sheriff’s in attendance needed to be “escorted” outside the chamber on bathroom breaks. If that wasn’t enough, they were subsequently ejected from the chamber altogether. What does it say that the government of the people chose to remove the elected sheriffs from the room while this law was being considered? 

Through the multiple revisions that lead to this point, the law strips away law enforcement immunity for failure to enforce these “red flag” orders. This of course is in direct response to 30 of the 33 elected sheriffs signing on to oppose the “red flag” laws and vowing not to enforce them. Also dragged into the loss of immunity are the district attorney’s offices and the office of the attorney general. Potential damages to be awarded were also raised into the millions of dollars. 

Attempts to amend the law to remove the loss of legal immunity for law enforcement and the district attorneys failed. And – bear with me for a minute on this – I’m glad these amendments failed. Keep in mind I’m saying this as a former law enforcement officer who believes this is a slap in the face of everyone who wears a badge. 

Too often in the world of gun control laws, state legislators buy the cooperation and loyalty of the law enforcement community by granting them generous exemptions to the laws impacting the regular citizens of the state. What we’ve seen here is a deliberate legislative smack down of any law enforcement discretion or compliance with Constitutional standards. It clearly states they will blindly obey or pay the price.  The fact that is was purposely introduced and left in a so-called “public safety” law should remove any doubt about the true intent, gun control and gun confiscation.  

Other fascinating additions to this law include the expanded list of who can be the reporting party. It includes the usual relatives plus now “… child, person with whom a respondent has or had a continuing personal relationship, employer or public or private school principal.”  There is no definition of  a child here, so supposedly any child able to speak is old enough, nor is there a definition of continuing personal relationship. Exactly how many dates does it take to equal a “continuing personal relationship”. Your anti-gun employer or principal? No problem!  Keep in mind the reporting party incurs no costs to initiate a complaint – actually a reasonable thing since the ability to pay should not be a limiting factor – but there is also no penalty for false or misleading claims.  

Of course, this courtesy doesn’t extend to the respondent, the person being accused of being a danger to themselves or others. Since this is a civil matter, albeit law enforcement, a city, county or state prosecutor and a criminal court judge are involved in getting the order, the respondent has no right for a public defender in these proceedings. And since this process assumes the respondent is guilty until proven innocent, fees are currently running upwards of $15,000 for legal representation.  In other words, justice and restoration of your Constitutional rights is denied for anyone who can’t afford it. 

Then there is the fact that the respondent, accused of being an imminent threat to themselves or someone else, to the point where their Constitutionally protected rights can be stripped away from them without due process, has 48 hours to surrender their firearms to law enforcement or a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL). 

Set aside the absolute insanity of thinking that a person who is an immediate threat to themselves or others could not utilize some other form of violence (knives, club, car, chemical, hands & feet, etc. etc. etc.) to carry out their plans, giving them 48 hours to voluntarily comply shows this law has nothing at all to do with public or personal safety. 

Every state in this nation has legal mechanisms to deal with individuals who are a threat to themselves or others. The horrific violent incidents that gave rise to these “red flag” laws all have the same thing in common; a complete and utter failure of federal, state, county and local government officials in multiple agencies to act on clear indications of impending violence. Simply put, the government already has all the tools to save lives but has been criminally negligent in enforcing them. 

New Mexico’s Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order law will soon be signed by the Governor in what is expected to be a made for media event designed to demonstrate how this law, and this law alone, could have saved the lives of those lost to previous violence. 

The signing of the law will also be our wake-up call to the fact that our representatives no longer represent our interests. By enacting a law that has ZERO to do with public safety and is only a back-door method of confiscating firearms and stripping away Constitutionally protected rights without due process or evidence of a crime committed, the New Mexico legislature has shown they are only interested in compiling with the national political party platform and gun control special interests. 

Is this the kind of government you want?  Maybe it’s time to vote for someone else. 

Bob

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New Mexico Is Second Amendment Proud

I’m a little behind due to a bad case of the SHOT Show crud, so let’s catch up quickly. 

On Friday, January 31, 2020, Second Amendment supporters from around New Mexico gathered at the Roundhouse to protest House Bill 7 / Senate Bill 5 (SB5). These are the so-called “red flag” laws that allow your firearms and Second Amendment rights to be taken away without due process and without a crime ever being committed. A peaceful crowd estimated between 300 and 1000 were in attendance to let those in the Roundhouse know they were opposed to this latest infringement on our rights. Following the speeches outside, the attendees went inside to speak to their representatives. It was an amazing day. 

Since then, there have been numerous rallies and Second Amendment supporters attending committee hearings on SB5. Sadly, through numerous revisions, SB5, now SB5.5, has passed committees and the Senate. It is now destined for the House.

Here’s what I saw at the rally. A peaceful gathering of strong and independent people who are concerned about their rights being taken away. I saw a diverse crowd, some openly carried handguns or long guns, others concealed. There were men and women, old and young, just about every race you could imagine including members of Native American tribes, professionals, tradesmen, business owners and employees, local and state level politicians, democrats and republicans – isn’t that a shocker. 

Of the most encouraging groups was the elected sheriffs from around the state. 30 of the 33 county sheriffs have signed on to oppose this “red flag” legislation and by my count, the majority of them, along with a number of their deputies, were in attendance. Notably, these men and women were standing side-by-side with those protesting SB5, not standing in-between the protestors and the legislators as we’ve seen in other states. 

All in all, it was a polite crowd, as most groups of Second Amendment supporters are. Nobody was pushing, yelling or threatening anyone, no property was damaged, no laws were broken, no arrests were made, and the capitol property was picked up and left the way it was found. All of which is typical of Second Amendment protest rallies. It was a pleasure to be there, meet and speak to some of those involved in the New Mexico Second Amendment community. 

But… what did the gun control community see? Oh, something radically different.  Among my favorite articles from the day was one entitled: “The Face of Trump: Scary NRA Roundhouse Rally”.  It started out with the paragraph: “It was actually pretty frightening, the guns, the faces, the signs, the words, the anger. This is the Trump army and it is scary to think of what happens when he loses.”

Some highlights: 

“The Scary Underside of the US”

“Yesterday was NRA day at the Roundhouse, drawing a large crowd of people seething with anger and armed. First, they rallied outside with speeches filled with fury, misinformation, and threats.”

“I had to pass through the throng to fetch some lunch. Going out and returning, passing through these people, was a very uncomfortable experience. When their eyes caught my Retake Our Democracy button, I was met with scowls, with one guy smirking and pushing forward his assault weapon. He was wearing a flak jacket and MAGA cap.”

Others called this a rally of “Nazis”, “white supremacists”, “Trump supporters” and “Second Amendment extremists”.  Some called for law enforcement to sweep the attendees at the rally as it was “obvious they couldn’t pass a background check”. 

Of course, none of this was true, starting with the fact it wasn’t an NRA rally, it was organized and sponsored locally by Pro-Gun Women. Were there supporters of President Trump there? Yes. But there were also those who are not his supporters. Where there NRA members there? Yes. But there were also those who are not NRA supporters. It’s almost as Second Amendment supporters cross all political lines and all those people showed up to peacefully protest together. 

Although there is one characterization I will agree with, but not in the context it was stated. Yes, the people at the rally were “angry”, but it wasn’t the mad, pre-violent, scowling, hostile type of angry the gun control lobby implies, but more the determined, motivated and empowered type of anger. Think about it, how would you feel if your natural, God-given rights were being threatened? You’d probably want to do something about it, and that’s what’s happening here. 

They claimed it was all sneers, sinister and threatening faces, not a smile in the group. I want to know where the hell these people were!!  I saw nothing BUT smiles and good natured, positive attitude people. But then, that doesn’t go along with the narrative of hostile, unstable and violent hordes the gun control lobby wants everyone to see.  

SB5 has mutated a few times since this rally and includes more people who can petition to have your rights and firearms stripped from you as well as provisions to make the sheriffs liable for NOT enforcing these unconstitutional orders. It also gives the person who is being stripped of their rights 48 hours to surrender their firearms – so much for the immediate threat argument. The next stop is at the House Consumer and Public Affairs committee on Tuesday, February 11th

It is abundantly clear SB5 has nothing to do with public safety and has everything to do with finding a back door means of stripping away your rights without due process and grabbing as many firearms from law-abiding citizens as possible. It is also quite clear the illogic of all this is completely lost on those who are promoting it. 

The ONLY hope I see at this point is to convince the political hacks in the Roundhouse that the ONE thing they cherish above all else will be lost to them if they vote for SB5. That one thing is their jobs. We the people hold the power to evict them as our representatives and replace them with someone who will serve our interests, not those of the national political party and special interest fringe activists.  

The time to contact your representatives and let them know where you stand is now! 

Bob

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Virginia, Proud. New Mexico, ______?

Last week, Second Amendment supporters from all over Virginia and the United States showed what it means to peacefully protest the Constitutional infringements being proposed by the increasing tyrannical left fringe Virginia legislature. An estimated 22,000 attended Lobby Day at the state capital, most lawfully armed. Now it’s New Mexico’s turn. A Second Amendment rally is being held on Friday, January 31st at the Roundhouse (the state capitol building) in Santa Fe. Many of the same issues and concerns in Virginia are up for consideration by the Democratic controlled legislature here. It’s time to step up New Mexico. Will you be there? 

Virginia’s Lobby Day couldn’t have been a more textbook example of a peaceful, law-abiding firearm owner protest. The vast majority of those in attendance were lawfully armed, yet there was no violence. There were individuals from all walks of life; men, women and children; different races, ethnicities and religions. Yet there was no violence. Uniformed and off-duty law enforcement officers standing side-by-side with other Second Amendment supporters, even a Hong Kong flag flying (the man holding it said, “It only seems fair. They’re holding ours”), yet still, there was no violence. 

Fences and metal detectors restricted access to the capitol grounds itself due to an emergency declaration and gun free zone enacted by Virginia’s gun control governor. Citing so-called ‘credible threats’ from Second Amendment extremists, the Governor said it was to prevent a repeat of the violence in Charlottesville in 2017. Of course, the only deadly violence was committed by someone with an automobile and NO firearms were used. The only arrest from the Lobby Day came from someone violating Virginia’s prohibition on wearing a mask in public. 

Virginia’s Governor wasted no time in taking credit for the lack of violence due to the de-escalation measures he put into place. Left fringe politicians went into hiding for the day rather than face their constituents and listen to what they had to say at the Capitol.  Gun control groups cherry picked through the photos of the protestors to find ones that supported their narrative that this was a white supremacy rally and only older white males were in attendance. Others called the attendees carrying firearms terrorists because they themselves were “terrorized” and called for the firearms of all those in attendance to be confiscated under the new proposed “red flag” laws. It was called a racist act of domestic terrorism, locking the city down in fear while trying to intimidate the duly elected representatives of the state from enacting “commonsense gun control”.  It’s as if any opinion other than the one the left fringe wanted to hear is considered terrorization.

Yet still… no violence. And not because of the Governor’s so-called emergency declaration or the lack of racial stimulus to kick off a firefight from all the itchy trigger fingers, it was because the people were there to protest the proposed infringements on their rights. Each and every one of them knew violence was the last thing they wanted. But then, that’s kind of the point of being armed. Armed citizens are lousy victims of violence since they have the ability to fight back. That’s why criminals, and politicians prefer unarmed victims. 

At the end of the day, everyone went home peacefully. On their way out, they stopped and collected their trash, including scraping up stickers that had stuck to the pavement. Imagine that. A 22,000 strong group of armed protestors taking the time to pick up after themselves and clean the streets as they left. Congratulations to the Virginia Citizens Defense League and every single law-abiding firearm owner who was in attendance. You’ve set the bar on what a Second Amendment protest can be. 

While New Mexico is not considering the full rash of draconian gun control measures during this year’s 30-day session that the Virginia legislature is considering, infringement is still infringement. Compromising your natural, constitutionally protected rights on one issue only makes it easier to have more rights taken away later on. 

The most significant issue for New Mexico this year is House Bill 7 / Senate Bill 5, the so-called “red flag” laws that allow your firearms and Second Amendment rights to be taken away without due process and without a crime ever being committed. The accused then bears the burden of proof, and all costs associated with the significant legal fees and medical / legal experts to show that they are NOT dangerous to themselves or others in order to get their Second Amendment rights restored and firearms returned. 

How much “public safety” and “suicide prevention” is being achieved when the accused – the person who is supposed to be a threat to others or themselves – is left with unrestricted access to every other kind weapon and NO access to any kind of support services? These “red flag” laws are nothing more than a mechanism to remove firearms from law abiding citizens and make them struggle to get them back, IF they can ever get them back at all. 

I will repeat what I have said time and time again, the ONLY way to prevent these kinds of idiotic, non-sensical gun control laws from going into effect is to STOP electing people who are promising to take away your rights. If you are protesting their consideration, you are playing a dangerous game of catch up. 

But guess what? Catch up we can! We can show the gun control politicians we do not support their gun control legislation AND we do not support politicians who try to pass gun control laws. 

New Mexico’s Second Amendment rally is at the Roundhouse on Friday, January 31, 2020 at 11:00 am.  If you can’t be there, write and/or call your representatives this week. It’s time to stand up for your rights while you still can. 

Bob

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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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