Posts Tagged ‘Gun Control’

Why Mass Shootings Continue

Monday, February 26th, 2018

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In the wake of the Parkland, Florida shooting of February 14th, many people have offered their own assessments of why these sorts of incidents continue to happen.  They appear in media to tell us that “something must be done,” or that “something has to change.”  Few of them offer any but superficial remedies, but sadly, many people fall for this nonsense, uncritically believing their passion rather than questioning either the concrete concepts involved,  or because they conceptually don’t bother and just wish the human suffering they’ve witnessed to end.  In part, this is understandable, and I could forgive the general lack of detailed understanding, but because this blind spot is exploited to strip law-abiding Americans of their liberty, I simply won’t tolerate these senseless exclamations to go unanswered any longer. On this site, I’ve gone to great pains to explain the technical aspects of the firearms, and the philosophical aspects of the foundations of our law, including what constitutes a right.  I realize this site is not the most highly trafficked destination on the Internet, but for all the howling lunatics who insist that we can “fix this” by banning guns, or by background checks, or by any other simple solution, let me state it succinctly: We will never eliminate the phenomenon of mass shooting entirely, but neither will we significantly reduce it if we ignore the question: “Whose job is it to protect our children?”

Let us start with a few facts that most people seem to disregard on their way to blaming all the wrong things, and permitting all the wrong things to continue.  Let’s focus on the shooting of Parkland, Florida as the exemplar of this type of event.  In the lead-up to this event, the FBI had at least two leads, one called in by a bail-bondsman, that was a little less specific, but also somebody closer to the shooter called in a solid tip on this shooter in January, contending he was going to “explode.”  A PDF of the full transcript of this call was posted by the NYTimes.  It’s astonishing how specific the information was, and more astonishing that the FBI didn’t act.

Local police had dealt with him in at least thirty-nine documented calls for service(mostly 9-1-1 calls.) The school had continuously wrestled with this kid in an ever-escalating series of incidents including assaults, fights, and terroristic threats, culminating in his eventual expulsion.  There were countless “red flags” about this wayward soul.  His classmates even half-joked about him becoming a school shooter, and ironically, they may have even unintentionally implanted in him the idea.  It should have been clear by the time he entered high school that he did not belong in the mainstream school population, but today’s education fads make it difficult to remove a troubled youngster.  All of the aggregated incompetence of individuals in the system, and the oppressive bureaucracy itself could not avoid producing the result of February 14th.  It’s baked into the cake.

Given all the failures in advance of the event, it was almost inevitable that this event was going to happen.  All that could now change would be the number of dead, and the result was dominated again by the incompetence of individuals as well as the bureaucracies involved.  Let us start with Deputy Scot Peterson, the sole School Resource Officer on the campus at the time the shooting commenced.  Peterson had been with the Broward Sheriffs Office going back to 1985, and thirty-three years later, and apart from the shooter himself, he would come to be the person most instrumental in the final body count.  He arrived outside the building less than a minute after the shooting had commenced, and there he waited, effectively seeking cover, but taking no remedial actions of any kind.  Even as he was joined by additional deputies, Peterson did not rally them to make entry and confront the shooter.  They simply waited for the shooting to stop. How many were shot and killed or bled out for lack of medical attention or simple first aid while Deputy Peterson did nothing?  A time-syncronized analysis of the various surveillance tapes might provide that answer, or at least a reasonable approximation of it, but Sheriff Scott Israel, the highly political head of the Broward Sheriffs Office, will likely do all in his power to prevent the disclosure or obfuscate any analysis that may ever be done.  You can’t be permitted to know, but most importantly, the people who lost loved-ones in this shooting must never be permitted to know lest there erupt some sort of popular lynching of the Sheriff and his deputies.  While the word “disgrace” doesn’t cover it, it is nevertheless disgraceful. The bulk of the media is covering for him, of course, and this is why the underlying dereliction was mostly covered-up until the end of the week and the gun control narrative had been thoroughly seeded. Imagine the complete arrogance it takes to make the statement Sheriff Israel offers in the video clip below:

https://twitter.com/twitter/statuses/967811615419707394

In for a penny, in for a pound.

It is at this point that something of an outrage erupts over the conduct of Deputy Peterson and his fellow officers, as well as the attempt to cover this up by Sheriff Israel, including his public attempts to deflect criticism onto the NRA.  The problem is that when all the outrage dies down, Israel and his deputies will have gotten away with it, as will the incompetent school, the incompetent FBI.  Their defenses will be their incompetence.  You can already hear it from their shills. “We’re too few, we have too little money, we have to few people, we didn’t know, and it’s the guns!”  What they won’t highlight, but I’m going to tell you, is the thing they don’t dare say in plain language to the ears of a listening world:

“It isn’t our job!”

Indeed, Sheriff Israel tells us that it’s his job to hire, train, and arm his deputies, but once they’re in the field, it isn’t his responsibility with respect to what they do as individuals.

Technically, they’re right: It isn’t their job to protect anybody.  It isn’t the school’s job, and it isn’t the job of police. It isn’t the job of the FBI or social workers or any other person even tangentially-related to this even, except: All the adults who were themselves the victims, or whose children were victims.

I know I will immediately face the angry roar of the crowd for having said this, but let me assure you that it is one-hundred percent accurate.  In more cases than can be listed here, time after time, courts have held that the only person with an affirmative duty to protect any person from harm is that person.  This duty cannot ultimately be delegated for a myriad of logical reasons. I learned this lesson the hard way back in the 1990s, when our own daughter entered Middle School.  It has always been my admonishment to her that she must never threaten violence, nor enact any, except in direct and immediate response to a physical attack upon her person.  On that point, I further explained that she had a duty to defend herself if she were ever to come under attack.  It goes almost without saying that she eventually crossed paths with a bully, older, and much larger, who attacked her in the hallway of the school, and when she rose in her own defense, perhaps feebly to scale of the task before her, by the rules of the school, which had adopted a “Zero Tolerance Policy” on school violence, she was as guilty as her attacker, and issued the same suspension. This is done by school districts so as to indemnify themselves against civil claims, but it provides no effective protection to anybody.

After several arguments, often heated, with faculty and administrators of the school and the district, we withdrew our daughter from that school in order to home-school her, because the school would not admit that she had a right to defend herself against physical attack, and because they would not assume liability for any future attacks.  In essence, they said that protecting our child against physical violence “isn’t our job.”  The question they refused to answer in light of that assertion was: “Who is liable to protect my child from physical violence?”  No affirmative answer, but only: “Not us.

One might read that and think that perhaps the school isn’t liable in any legal or financial sense, but that they must have some moral obligation to protect our children.  The courts are concerned solely with the law.  The subjective notions of morality we may hold are not their affair.  The same is true of the police.  Yes, they are supposed to stop criminals, detain and arrest criminals, thereby preventing them from committing further crimes.  What they do not have is a duty to protect you. On this matter, the Supreme Court has repeatedly held this to be the case.  Logically, it makes sense on even the most simplified basis: In order to carry out a theoretical duty to protect all people at all times, there would need to be a policeman standing guard over each of us twenty-four hours per day.  The most economical way to do this would be a prison, for all of us, including the police, who would need guards of their own.  The point is that there can be no affirmative duty to protect you or your children against every or even any conceivable harm.  It’s not possible.  This is why we withdrew our daughter from school.  We ultimately moved out of that district to a home in a vastly different district where we felt the level of risk, while still higher than we would like, was much reduced.  The school still could not (and would not) guarantee to protect our child, but the general environment was more conducive to her average condition of safety.

What does this have to do with Parkland, Florida?  Nearly every parent knows this, but pretends not to know it.  Ask any parent “whose job is to protect your children?” You would think the answer to the question would be self-evident and immediately proclaimed, but it isn’t. This same thing is true when you ask parents: “Who is responsible to educate your child?”  Or: “Whose has a duty to feed(or cloth or house or treat) your child?” Ask these questions and watch the expression on parents’ faces as they try to explain how somebody other than themselves is obligated to do all of these things.  Only honest parents will answer in all these cases: “It’s my job.”  That’s right, and it’s the only answer to any such question.

The truth is that only parents have the responsibility to protect their children against all comers. The schools know this.  The police know it.  Every department of government knows it.  The well-worn motto “…to protect and serve…” is merely a public relations pitch.  Once you understand that only you have responsibility to protect yourself and your children, we can begin to think about these mass shootings in a different light, and it immediately calls into question the whole notion of “gun free zones.”

In a “gun free zone,” under punishment of law, you are forbidden from bearing arms for any reason.  Put in other terms, what this really means is that in a “gun free zone,” you are prohibited from effective self-defense.  Much like my daughter in the school with a “zero tolerance policy,” to provide for your own defense is a crime.  When you deposit your child into one of these “gun free zones,” you have sent them into an environment where only the predators will be armed, because the predators do not regard the law as any obstruction, and they view the obstruction to law-abiding folks as an invitation to the mayhem they intend.

One of the reasons we have such large schools is for the apparent economies of scale, but such concentrations of people are inviting targets for the sort who intend massive carnage. This has always concerned me with respect to our schools, because any madman, intent on devastation, could exploit this large aggregation of our children, who we profess to be the most valuable extensions of our lives.  The truth is that the only way to stop people with guns is to confront them with guns.  All of the rest is nonsense, and as I have explained, the next school shooter is already out there.

The most pressing reason we won’t likely stop the next mass shooter is because we refuse to assign blame.  Everybody is happy to point at the killer, but people generally look for some larger reason.  The scale of the tragedy and the enormity of the human loss and suffering begs us to empathize with the victims and their loved-ones, and well we should, but we must not lose sight of the totality of this problem, requiring of us a clear-eyed assessments to come to the truth.  Let’s list them:

Let’s think of all the ways in which this shooting might have been avoided:

  • The FBI might have followed up on one or both of the tips they received
  • The school might have sought to press charges on Cruz when he committed previous acts of violence on their campus
  • The local Law Enforcement might have sought to press charges

Let’s be plain-spoken about this: If any of these entities had acted appropriately, Cruz would have been charged with felonies on multiple previous occasions, including assault with a deadly weapon(or whatever equivalent charge exists in Florida) and this would have prohibited him from purchasing a weapon.  The NICS system doesn’t magically know that some people shouldn’t have weapons.  That information has to be placed into the database.  As we saw with the shooter at Sutherland Springs, Texas church shooter, the Air Force failed to put information into the system about the shooter, permitting him to purchase firearms.  In the Parkland, Florida case, neither the school nor the law enforcement agencies ever created the paper trail that would have been entered into the database to prohibit Cruz from obtaining firearms.

This leads us to a very uncomfortable place, which is the reason guns are being blamed and the National Rifle Association is being blamed.  You see, all of the institutions named above have made quite sure they cannot be blamed, and that none among them will be held culpable, in any respect whatever.  We might become angry and claim they had “a moral responsibility to…” act or intervene or otherwise mitigated this circumstance, but the truth is that our outrage doesn’t constitute an enforceable legal claim.

I’m going to say the thing that will be most unpopular, and will cause many to heap disdain upon me, but it’s nevertheless true:  Every parent of every child enrolled in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (and indeed in every public school anywhere) knew or ought to have known all the facts outlined above long before the attack of February 14th. If they found these facts unacceptable, (and I certainly would have,) they had a responsibility to get their children out of that environment.  You might say that they had no choice but to enroll their kids in that school.  While I understand the practical arguments, I thoroughly disagree in an absolute sense, inasmuch as they are the parents, and they could move to another district, act to change that district, home-school their children, or enroll their children in other schools at their own expense.  Contextually, the tax-payers of any school district are held at gun-point to pay for that school system and in this case, for that worthless Sheriffs Office, and that is as much an indictment of our entire system as anything else.  It is said that we “get the government we deserve,” and this is equally true of schools and sheriffs.

What I would say to parents who truly wish to protect their children is to familiarize themselves with the facts variously described above.  They should inform themselves of the policies at their schools, and make their choices accordingly.  What I can say without reservation on this date is that I am unaware of a single public school in any jurisdiction, anywhere in the country, to which I would entrust the safety of my children.  To my knowledge, none of them can be trusted to provide for student safety, and none of them really want that responsibility.  You will naturally find a number of teachers who would accept that responsibility, but they are hamstrung by worthless bureaucracies, foolish unions and professional associations, and in many jurisdictions, the law.

If a teacher tells you that they are unwilling to be armed in defense of their students, what they are really saying to you is that they are not to be trusted with your children, because they don’t wish to take on the responsibility of protecting the lives of your children.

Period. End. Fin!

Everything they might say after that is merely a load of excuse-making, and largely ideologically driven.  Besides, apart from contraindicating physical disabilities, how competent is any adult who cannot(or will not) be trained to proficiency with a concealable firearm?  Should any person lacking that basic competence be permitted access to your children for any purpose?  I say “No.”

Where do we start?  We need people to answer honestly the simple question: “Who is responsible for the safety of my children?” Once you reduce that question to its irreducible constituents, the answer is all too plain.  “Something must change!”  Indeed, and what that something is must be that parents must reassert their responsibility for the lives and safety of their children.  When they do that, nearly all the school shootings will cease, and even when they do occur, there will be provisions in place to effectively defend against them.

 

 

 

 

 

Stealth Attempt to Ban Your Guns In Progress

Sunday, January 21st, 2018

2nd_amendment_ftIn Washington DC, as law-abiding Americans go about their days minding their business, the machinery of state has found a new approach to attack their right to defend themselves with modern firearms.  No longer content to accept the fact that the Second Amendment guarantees the individual right to keep and bear arms, and no longer willing to accept venerable definitions even of inanimate objects, the administrative state will now redefine terms in order to further restrict your liberties, and ultimately, to strip you of them entirely.  It will be incremental, and as usual, the method will be to attack at those points where the defenders are less certain, or less committed.  The immediate object will be items like “bump-fire” stocks and “echo triggers,” but the ultimate aim is the banning of all “semi-automatic” or “auto-loading” weapons.  Those of you who think your shotguns or pistols are safe had better think again.  Those of you who think even your revolvers will be exempt had ought to reconsider.  Naturally, the military, police, and other official entities will be exempt, and you will be left defenseless, ultimately, because you will not be permitted the means to resist.  You might think you can live without bump-stocks or echo triggers, and you might be right if that’s where it would stop, but it won’t.  It never does. For that reason, I wish to arm you with the knowledge you need to make a choice, and commit to it in the face of this lunacy, and to provide you the information you need to stop this now.  The BATFE has drafted new rules, and you need to comment and oppose them.  To make your argument, you’ll need to understand how they’re attacking your liberties.

Let us begin by understanding what they want to ban.  In the end, they are intent on depriving you even of lever actions and even more primitive weapons. They will reduce you to blunderbusses used only in ceremonies and re-enactments.  To do this, they took the first step by regulating machine guns, so-called “fully automatic” weapons under the National Firearms Act of 1934. In 1986, the Hughes Amendment prohibited the production of new “automatic weapons” for the civilian market.  Now, they’re prepared to take the next step.  The “problem” they wish to “solve” is that you would be able to fire one round immediately after the previous with an additional squeeze of the trigger.  That’s what an auto-loader or “semi-automatic” does.  Discharging the round currently loaded in the chamber causes the firearm to load the next round into the chamber, ready to be discharged when the trigger is again depressed. This is accomplished by some combination of spent gas and mechanical operation, the former powering the latter. The long-held definition of a semi-automatic has been that some additional human interaction is required to cause the next cycle, ordinarily another trigger squeeze. A device like a bump-stock merely helps the operator speed up this process.  The human operator still depresses the trigger to initiate each additional discharge.  What’s different is that the human is merely taking advantage of the natural recoil of the firearm at higher speed.  The cost is that the accuracy is sacrificed.  The method is to use the slop of the added mechanism to create a circumstance whereby the weapon’s natural recoil and a sloppy hold on the weapon create a moment when the weapon is recoiling, and then quickly returns to it’s firing position, meeting the finger which is positioned to again depress the trigger.  The weapon is still a semi-automatic, but human guile has made it approximate the rate of fire of an automatic.

The truth the BATFE’s rule will not now address is that no device beyond the firearm itself is actually needed to accomplish this.  Human guile, a bit of practice, and a little time accomplish the same thing.  This truth will be “discovered” at some future date, and when it is, the BATFE will move to ban semi-automatics on the exact same basis: That they can be manipulated in such a way as to behave, to the uneducated observer, like an automatic.  At present, they are basing it on the idea of “rate increasing devices,” but that’s a hoax.  None of these devices increase the rate of fire, but the human inducing it to operate are the instrument of the increase.  Since they can’t very well ban humans, at least not yet, or ban fingers, or ban loose or sloppy holds on weapons, they will instead ban the weapons.

I encourage each reader to go view a few videos on youtube.  These videos each show a person operating a semi-automatic in such a way as to approximate the rate of fire of an automatic.  Here’s an AR-15:

 

Here’s a Glock pistol:

Here’s a shotgun: Bump-firing a Mossberg 930.  I think you get the point. There is no form of semi-automatic that can’t be “bump-fired,” and to be perfectly blunt about it, the fact that owners of any semi-automatic weapons of any description would support a ban on “bump-stocks” or any other alleged “rate-limiting device” is merely an act of ignorance or cowardice.

The only “rate-increasing device” is a human.  The only salient fact is that your rights are under attack by the BATFE, perhaps at the direction, or at least under control of President Trump.  Congress is certainly complicit, as Republicans in Congress wish to simply make the issue go away, and making BATFE the heavy in an election year is the most expedient way.  Republicans can get their ban of bump-stocks without being seen by their pro-gun voters to participate in a vote to ban them.  This nifty abrogation of their responsibility is also an shirking of their constitutional role.  Permitting them to ban “bump-stocks” or “echo triggers” will next lead to the banning of any trigger modification, including reduced trigger pull weight.  Do you enjoy that improved trigger on your Glock?  Is that trigger on your custom AR-15 really smooth and light? What about the trigger on your Benelli shotgun?  Making them lighter or smoother also makes them easier to bump-fire.  Before long, anything that can be bump-fired by any methodology will be banned, factory-standard or not.  This will be the end of your semi-automatics.  Then it will be double-action revolvers, which in principle, could also be bump-fired.  Ladies and gentlemen, I submit to you that permitting the BATFE to redefine the terms will permit them to ultimately ban all semi-automatic firearms, and a few more besides.

There isn’t any question about it:  This rule must be stopped, and the NRA is doing nothing about it, at least to date, but they’re not likely to do so, because they want the issue to go away too.  To my knowledge, only the Gun Owners of America is taking any action, at least to date.  You can help, and you should, even if you don’t own any of these types of weapons, because things may change and the day may come when you decide you want or need one.  Banning these items on the basis that they “increase the rate of fire” is astonishingly dishonest, since the only true “rate-increasing device” is human ingenuity.  Please visit GOA’s website for more details, and to help by making official comments with the BATFE during the current comment period.

There is one more reason to stop this rule, and it’s a constitutional problem unrelated to the Second Amendment. People have spent millions and millions of dollars on their bump-fire stocks and their echo triggers and so on.  A rule that would now effectively make the possession or use of these items constitutes a “taking.”  In effect, the rule proposes to steal the value of these items without compensation.  Now it is true that I would oppose this even if the government promised to make the owners whole, but the simple fact is that as many as a million of these various devices, perhaps more, are in circulation, and most of them cost hundreds of dollars.  It’s hard to say with an exact number, but the amount of value this would steal from the aggregate of their owners is probably in the hundreds of millions of dollars. This violates the Fifth Amendment’s prohibition of uncompensated takings:

…private property [shall not] be taken for public use, without just compensation.

That seems pretty straight-forward, and it’s an objection we should all raise.

People with an anti-American point of view favor these gun bans, and bans on “rate-increasing devices.”  The problem is that they’re frauds, using each unfortunate attack or mass shooting as an opportunity to steal our liberties.  Note that these same devious liars did not call for the ban of Home Depot rentals after one of those trucks was used by a terrorist.  Why not?  Because too many Americans would reject it.  That’s why your voice is needed now: The government, even under President Trump, needs to know that a large number of the American people reject it.  Don’t fail to speak out in defense of your liberties, and in the name of reason and fact.

For a video discussion of this regulation, including a former BATFE employee explaining how this is being done, see the Military Arms Channel video on youtube.

Bumping Down the Slippery Slope

Thursday, October 12th, 2017

 

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In the wake of the horrific shooting in Las Vegas, various parties have latched onto bump-stocks as the means to launch a new round of gun-control, and foolish Republicans, eager to avoid any negative press, have seemingly surrendered the ground. Legislation has been introduced that will retroactively(!) ban bump-stocks, and due to its wording, potentially criminalize simple improved triggers. Given the over-broad wording, this legislation could be taken to ban all sorts of things.  This should terrify every gun owner, as we see the NRA going wobbly on the issue, and as leftists pounce like hyenas to finish the job. We can always rely on leftists to be insanely, obsessively intent upon exploiting any mass shooting to serve their political aims, but the truth is that it is the people on our side who need the most thorough kick in the pants.  Listening to the parade of Republican politicians who are willing to ban an item the existence of which they were blissfully unaware less than two weeks ago is worse than disheartening, as it speaks to the tendency of politicians to surrender in fear an any issue in which they are unsure.  All of this is bad enough, but as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi(D-CA) made plain on the Thursday following the shooting, a ban on bump-stocks is not the end-game, and will only be used as an opening gambit in a larger grab of gun rights. She wants this to become the slippery slope, as some alleged ‘conservatives’ join with Democrats in desiring an end to the Second Amendment.  Cooler, rational heads must prevail and stop this whole process in its tracks.

Before discussing the politics of bump-stocks, it would seem practical to dispense with some of the disinformation about them. Listening to some of the nonsense going on in the media, and having heard such lunacy as ammunition described as “automatic” over the past week, I think it’s time for some education. My readers are likely aware of these matters, but I think I ought to cover the subject for the sake of those who may go in search of the answer to the questions: “What is a bump-stock” or “What is bump-fire?” To answer these questions, let’s first be sure that we understand some firearms basics, because if I hear one more stupid, ignorant, never-held-a-gun-in-my-life ignoramus-posing-as-journalist misreport this information, my head may well explode.

Since the AR-15 family of weapons is in question in the Las Vegas incident, let us restrain ourselves to that family of weapons, although the basic concepts extend to many other families of weapons, such as the AK-47 and so on.  Automatic weapons are those that permit the firer to depress/squeeze the trigger, hold it in that depressed/squeezed position, and continuously discharge the weapon. In short, “one squeeze, many bullets.” In stark contrast, a semi-automatic weapon requires the firer to squeeze the trigger for each round to be discharged.  In short, “one squeeze, one bullet.” Military rifles like the M16A1, a weapon with which I first became intimately familiar in 1983, have select fire, meaning you can rotate a selector lever from safe to semi to auto.  This permits the firer to decide for the sake of the mission or the exigencies of the moment to fire one round at a time, or many rounds at a time. In training doctrine, we were repeatedly instructed that even on automatic, we should only ever squeeze off “3-5 round bursts” in order to control our fire and to limit overheating associated with firing a member of this family of rifles at cyclic rate. (The “cyclic rate” is an optimistic rate of fire stating the maximum theoretical number of rounds that can be discharged assuming you could feed it enough ammunition continuously, and that the weapon weren’t suffering from overheating. The cyclic rate quoted to we basic trainees back in 1983 was 700 rounds per minute.) The M16 was theoretically capable of emptying an entire 30-round magazine in something around 2.5 seconds.  That’s extraordinarily fast, and if you attempted to sustain that rate of fire, for instance with drum magazines holding 100 rounds, you’d quickly overheat and damage your barrel, and you’d likely wind up with a misfire and jam at some point. All of this addresses the M16, a weapon that was designed and able to select automatic fire from the factory floor.

It is a felony offense to convert a standard semi-automatic AR-15 to select fire or automatic fire.  By the letter of the law, this means that any modification to the weapon that permits the firer to squeeze the trigger and hold it squeezed resulting in multiple rounds being fire is an offense that can and will land you in serious legal jeopardy.  We’re talking federal prison, folks, and not the resort style facility for you, should you do this.  There are many cases of people accidentally causing a material change in the operation of their AR-15 that caused it to fire multiple rounds on a single trigger squeeze that have resulted in successful prosecutions.  In short, the BATFE has no patience for excuses and claims of “I didn’t mean to…” They want people to understand that this is a serious offense and that they will hammer you for transgressions, and they want the broader public to be aware that such violations, even allegedly innocent ones, will be pursued with the full prosecutorial force of the federal government.  This is why it’s always best to leave weapons customization to professionals except for perhaps purely superficial aspects of the weapon in question.

A bump stock does not, I repeat, **DOES NOT** convert a semi-automatic rifle to fully automatic or select fire capability.

This cannot be stated often enough, loudly enough, or with enough vigor.  Under the definition outlined above, the bump stock does not materially change the fact that one squeeze of the trigger results in the discharge of a single bullet.  What a bump stock does do is to permit the user, with a little practice and coordination, to effectively depress the trigger much faster than normal.  This is because a forward force is applied to the handguard/forearm of the rifle in continuous fashion.  Essentially, what is happening is that the weapon is being pulled continuously forward so that the trigger is bumped(thus the term “bump-fire”) by the finger(or thumb) and you can effectively depress the trigger much more rapidly this way than by repeated squeezing in the standard fashion.  Watch this video for a primer on the technique. Note that no special device or parts are needed or employed.  The bump stock works to facilitate this, making it somewhat easier to accomplish because the pistol grip and butt-stock of the rifle are sliding and thus can move back and forth.  In NO WAY does it change the mechanical function of the rifle or its action. However, as the linked video clearly shows, you do not need a bump-fire stock to accomplish this. Bump-firing has been going on for many years before the widespread sale of the various brands of bump-fire stocks. It’s actually very simple to accomplish as the novice shooter in this video shows, in this case using her belt-loop to turn her semi-automatic rifle into an exercise in “spray and pray.” Here‘s the most popular model of a bump-stock.

Understanding all of this, you may now understand my bafflement at the stupidity going on in media and among politicians.  It also makes plain the reason I have advocated ditching the ban on fully automatic weapons all along: If one is willing to forgo any accuracy, any shooter equipped with a semi-automatic rifle or shotgun can produce similar results WITHOUT BUYING ANYTHING.  In fact, it can be accomplished with a semi-automatic handgun too. (See video of a standard Glock 26 being bump-fired here.)

Knowing this, you could immediately ask the rather obvious question: Does bump-firing have drawbacks? The answer is a decisive and emphatic “YES!” You see, one of the problems with bump-firing is that in order to make it work, you have to have some lack of control.  In the case of the bump-stocks like the ones sold by Slide-Fire or FosTech you accept a certain amount of slop in the firing of the weapon.  Also, a semi-automatic weapon fired at this rate becomes terribly inaccurate. As you will notice when you watch any of the videos linked above, there’s not a great deal of control. More, this is wasteful of ammunition. Most of the rounds fired this way won’t strike an intended target as this video demonstrates, and while bump-fire stocks do improve this somewhat, one has to admit that it takes a fair amount of practice to gain much control even at short ranges. Striking point targets consistently at a distance is terribly difficult, if not strictly “impossible.” (Of course, if you’re aiming at a distant area target, like a crowd, or what we in the military would have called a “gaggle,” that’s another matter, but more about that shortly.) Lastly, any time you cycle a weapon this rapidly, even a purpose-built fully automatic machine gun, you invite two troubles, and they are jamming/misfire, and [over]heating. The killer in Las Vegas apparently knew this, which is why he had nearly two dozen weapons in the hotel.  He knew in advance that he’d only be able to fire a limited number of rounds in this fashion per gun, because as the barrel heats up(and this happens amazingly quickly,) the weapons would become less and less useful, accurate, and simultaneously, would become more prone to failures and jams of various descriptions.  Under certain circumstances, this could even lead to catastrophic failure of the weapon resulting in injury to the firer.

One might ask what this all means, particularly with respect to the various gun-control advocates and the advocates of the Second Amendment.  To be perfectly unambiguous, and to remove all doubt from the situation, let me state categorically that there is no way to avoid this as a consequence of the function of semi-automatic firearms.  Semi-automatic firearms are inherently able to produce the “bump-fire” results with or without any particular parts or attachments to facilitate it.  The choice is clear, and you should understand it: If you accept that there’s nothing wrong with semi-automatic weapons, then you accept bump-firing as a consequence.  Period.  Don’t let any politician or advocacy group tell you otherwise. You might ask what my opinion is on this matter, and again, I’ll be only too happy to explain my position: The Second Amendment says(from memory):

A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

It doesn’t say “lever action.” It doesn’t say “firearms.” It says “arms.” The current bans on automatic weapons, accepted and enforced by the courts, are actually entirely unconstitutional in any strict constructionist’s view of the Second Amendment. There is no set-aside for this one or that one.  The Second Amendment says “arms.”

In truth, if honestly applied, the Second Amendment does not permit the Federal Government to restrict any type of “arms,” neither “small arms,” nor even “nuclear arms.” You can expect to hear some howls on this basis, but a clear and concise reading of the Second Amendment leaves the Federal Government no such authority with respect to US citizens. What individual states may do is another matter, although since the courts adopted the [fraudulent]theory of incorporation with rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights, one could argue that the statists have screwed themselves.  After all, it was big government types who insisted that the rights protected in the Federal Bill of Rights be taken to extend to the state and local level.  It’s always been a matter of curiosity(actually, simple hypocrisy) that while statists hate the concept of federalism in virtually all other instances, they have long advocated the notion of federalism when it comes to the Second Amendment as they attempt to apply local or state gun control ordinances and statutes.  Then, and only then, federalism is a good thing!  This philosophical inconsistency reveals the absolute hypocrisy of the statists, and reveals that what they really desire is whatever they may desire from time to time, and that should serve as full justification from prohibiting to them any power of any sort.  In short, they want what they want when they want it, logic and reason be damned, and with them, your liberties and rights be damned.

With respect to the situation in Las Vegas, let us discuss the specifics of this case.  Here you had a madman of some sort, whether politically motivated, or simply crazy beyond all repair, who decided for whatever reasons or none at all that he ought to kill as many people as possible.  Let’s look at this closely, to discover what makes this situation somewhat unique.  First, he was in a fixed position.  Essentially, he created for himself a veritable sniper’s nest on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort.  He didn’t need to move, and he didn’t need to seek additional cover.  He was going to be virtually untouchable for some number of minutes, because the concrete platform that comprises each floor of the hotel meant that returning fire at him from anywhere on or near ground level was going to be ineffective, and perhaps dangerous inasmuch as people in rooms in the vicinity would likewise have been endangered.  The angles were all on his side, at least for the initial portion of his attack.  As time went on, and better information was derived about his precise whereabouts, and as forced marshaled to confront him, his long-term odds of escape began to rapidly diminish.  He had almost no chance of hitting a particular target. If his intention had been to kill a particular person, his chances of success while employing a bump-stock at that range were vanishingly small, but since his aim was clearly mass murder, he had no particular target, so that indiscriminate killing was the object but not a detriment to his plan.  These factors made his attack very easy to carry out. There was nothing particularly skilled or clever about this attack.  The most skillful part of his operation was clearly his ability to prepare for the attack, transporting his arsenal of arms and ammunition to the site, and keeping his motives hidden until he pulled the trigger.  In short, he doesn’t seem to have involved others, claims of ISIS notwithstanding, and to date, it hasn’t been shown that any other person had any foreknowledge of the coming attack, apart from reports of a woman at the concert screaming to attendees that they were “all going to die,” and this has not been reliably linked to the attack as of this writing, although there’s something somewhat eerily disciplined that tells me there’s more involved than has so far met the eye.  He was not a military veteran, and as of this writing, there is no indication that he had any military/paramilitary training of any sort, but he had clearly acquainted himself with the performance parameters of the weapons he intended to use.  He knew that he would need multiple weapons for this attack, since no single weapon was likely to remain effective for long at the intended rate of fire.  He apparently understood that he would have a limited time in which to do damage.  There has been speculation that he had an escape plan, but I’m not convinced of that.  From the moment he broke out the windows and commenced fire, his timer was running, and he must have known that his options would come down to:

  1. Attempt to escape
  2. Fight a standoff with SWAT team(s) and/or counter-snipers
  3. Suicide
  4. Surrender

Virtually none of these rotten dirtbags ever surrender, so you can knock #4 off the list.  He had to know that he was likely to face a miserable death if he opted to stick it out and try to hold off or combat a SWAT team.  They would have ended his miserable existence almost as quickly as he did, but his odds of suffering for a time with grievous wounds increased, as did the possibility of his apprehension, which, for all intents and purposes equates to #4, and that outcome was to be avoided at any cost.   Escape was not likely the moment the security guard identified his exact location only 7-8 minutes into the event.  Egress would be virtually impossible.  It’s been noted that he had explosives in his vehicle, and perhaps he intended something more.  The explosives may have been intended for some diversionary purpose, to help make his escape.  That’s all possible, but the truth is that this was likely to end with him dead with a bullet through his brain, one way or another, on the 32nd floor of the hotel.  He must have known this, and whether it ended by SWAT or by his own hand, the probability was that the moment he broke those windows, his life was forfeit.  Even if he had changed his mind about attacking the concert, those broken windows would have resulted in a security response at some point.  It might have resulted in a shoot-out with security at that point, but the moment he broke those windows, there was almost no way for him to go back.  More, he did nothing to conceal his identity, and so even if he had changed his mind and simply run out of the room, hoping to be miles away by the time security discovered his sniper’s nest, they were going to discover it, and then the pursuit would be on.  No, he knew that once he broke those windows, there was no longer an out, and no longer much chance that he would survive the night, apart from immediate surrender, which, as I’ve mentioned, these madmen nearly never do. In a sense, it’s like the 9/11 hijackers: The moment they stood up, box-cutters in hand, and began to attack the crew, making themselves and their intentions known, there was virtually no way to stop it. For this reason, the last moment to stop would have been prior to breaking the windows.  After that, this attack was inevitable, and in fact, should mark its beginning.

The concert goers had no warning, and no chance.  It was merely a matter of where he turned his weapon at any particular moment.  This makes it all the harder for the victims, but also the survivors who emerged essentially unscathed in a physical sense, because many will experience survivors’ guilt.  We should all grieve for the fallen, lend comfort and assistance to the wounded and injured, as well as the families of those struck down, and we must also bear in mind that those who survived this shooting will need us to listen, and need us to remain steadfast in our support of them.

Mass killings are a result of our wretched moral decay.  By this, I mean the propagating view of the lives and liberties of one’s fellow man as a disposable quantity.  This brings me to the current political uproar ongoing in Washington DC and in the media at large, with renewed vociferous demands to dispose of our liberties.  It is asserted by some that what is needed is to immediately ban bump-stocks.  As the linked videos above should make perfectly plain, that’s not going to change anything in any material way. The truth is what Nancy Pelosi has already revealed: They want bump-stocks to be the vehicle used as the barrier-buster by which they will attack ownership of every form of semi-automatic weapon, and ultimately now, fake ‘conservatives’ are seemingly happy to go along with a repeal of the Second Amendment.

What makes this all the more sickening is the position stated on Thursday by the NRA. Apparently, Wayne LaPierre thinks “regulating” bump-stocks is a fine idea.  Wayne had better pull his head out of his duffel-bag.  If the left succeeds in banning bump-fire stocks, how long do you suppose it will be before they make the following argument: “Well, but you can still bump-fire virtually any semi-automatic with or without the bump-fire stock, so let’s ban semi-automatics!” From the videos to which I’ve linked above, you know that argument to be true inasmuch as the bump-stock is largely irrelevant.  The nature of semi-automatic weapons is such that given just a bit of practice, they can be made to approximate the rate of fire of a fully automatic weapon.  With this known, you’re now faced with asking yourself whether you’re ready to surrender all your semi-automatic weapons, the possession of which, by the way, the leftists are only to happy to relieve you.

The truth of this and every previous gun-control debate is the same it has always been: They don’t believe in your basic human right to protect yourself, your liberties, and your families against all comers.  Now we see that the Republicans in Washington DC seem willing to drop your liberties like a hot rock too, and unsurprisingly to some, it appears that President Trump may be poised to side with the gun-grabbers.  Those of you who value the Second Amendment had better prepare for one of the greatest onslaughts of gun control fever in a generation.  The last time politicians in Washington DC had this much impetus in the direction of gun control was with the last foolish “assault weapons” ban. In this country is that 65% of gun deaths are suicides, and of the remainder, once you remove self-defense shootings and police shootings, the vast bulk are committed by young men killing one another in just a handful of our largest and most violent cities.  More, only a tiny fraction are accomplished with anything other than a handgun.  The “assault weapons” ban did nothing to curb killings, because killings with so-called “assault weapons” were never a significant portion of the gun deaths in this country anyway.

There can be no simple ban of “bump-stocks,” because it wouldn’t be anything beyond symbolic in any event, as I’ve explained ad nauseum above. As the article in Reason makes plain, the proposed legislation is monstrously generalized, and as they conclude rightly, will only serve to ensnare otherwise law-abiding Americans. Make no mistake: This is a all-out attack on the Second Amendment disguised as something more innocuous. This is about confiscation of all weapons, starting with semi-automatics, with bump-stocks as the first step. The problem starts with the concession that there is something inherently wrong with the higher rate of fire, and once that’s established, given the fact that nearly all semi-automatics are capable of some form of this manipulation, how long before they simply demand the surrender of them?  What’s coming is not merely the nose of the camel under the tent-flap, but the whole bloody herd, and they have blood in their eyes… Yours.

ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ!

Punishing the Victim: Obama to Create Nationwide “Gun Free Zone”

Sunday, December 6th, 2015

cbs_obama_gun_Control_tweet_sm

 

 

This morning, in promoting the day’s broadcasting schedule, CBS News tweeted out the following:

cbs_obama_gun_Control_tweet

 

 

 

If you had any doubts about the diabolical nature of Barack Obama’s ideology, it should now be clear.  Here we have the man entrusted with safeguarding the nation, and upon the circumstance of a terrorist attack within our own borders, an attack possible only due to the faulty vetting of his immigration enforcement policies that have created a virtual open border, Obama does not seek to close the door, or go after the terrorists, those who inspired, funded, and/or trained them, or any logical course of action at all.  Instead, Barack Obama seems poised to turn the entire country into a “Gun Free Zone” wherein only the bad guys have guns.

We know conclusively that gun violence is down almost everywhere in America, except for one class of location: Gun Free Zones.  Therefore, President Obama is going to do the most destructive thing possible in response: He’s going to broaden Gun Free Zones to encompass the entire nation.  That way, we’re ALL TARGETS, EVERYWHERE, ALL THE TIME.  (Unless we’re surrounded by men and women with guns because we’re under Secret Service protection.)

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, the White House is not a “Gun Free Zone.” President Obama doesn’t live in a “Gun Free Zone.” In fact, wherever he goes, he’s in a bubble of protection that is filled with guns aimed at protecting him.  Oh, sure, he’s not wielding any himself, but the men and women of the Secret Service who surround him are armed to the teeth. Yes, the President exists in a “Gun-Enhanced Zone.”

Once again, what’s good for Emperor Obama is not good enough for Americans.  It’s good to be king.

I suspect that before this evening’s address is over, as he goes on to announce new Executive Orders clamping down on your right to protect yourself, your family, and your home and property, from the length and breadth of America, minus the statist havens on both shores, we will hear a loud refrain of these most famous words:

*** Caution: Strong Language ***

It’s time to say what needs to be said: Barack Obama, stop blaming and punishing the victims of your intransigent maladministration of our immigration laws, and your senseless policies on defense of the nation.   It’s time for you to understand that you don’t run anything that the American people don’t want you to run.

 

 

The Alex Jones Freak-Show With Piers Morgan

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Jones Launches

As a resident of Central Texas, I’ve been familiar with Alex Jones for more than a decade.  When I first heard him, he w as on KLBJ-AM radio in Austin on weekends, as well as a daily Internet broadcast. Jones has always been easily convinced of conspiracies, and while he bumps into a number of real ones, he never seems to have the self-restraint to realize that not everything is a conspiracy, and not everything bad that happens is strictly the result of some conspiratorial actions of some shadowy elites.  I knew I could never listen to him again once he proposed that the twin towers were brought down by controlled demolition.  All of the video from that day shows the real cause of the collapse, and it wasn’t a thermite plasma device, or a series of smaller explosives, but the structural failure of steel load-bearing members weakened by heat and bearing much greater and more asymmetric burdens then they had ever been designed to bear.

It was from that moment on that I dismissed Alex Jones as an overblown crackpot.  The sad part is that he does more damage to his own credibility than his adversaries ever could, and it’s too bad because Jones is right about a number of things on the issue of freedom, and the never-ending growth of government.  On Monday night, he appeared on Piers Morgan’s show on CNN and scored some excellent point before melting down and making a complete ass of himself.  The freak-show may have been entertaining in some respects, but ladies and gentlemen, he is a loose cannon, and conservatives shouldn’t rely on him to carry the banner of liberty.  I get as angry as the next conservative when I see what the left is doing to our country, but most of us realize you can’t win an argument if you appear to be off your nut.  Jones never saw that memo.

The first thing Jones should have known was that he was being set up like a carnival side-show freak.  If Piers Morgan had wanted a serious debate about guns, there are much more authoritative sources he might have interviewed.  John Lott, author of More Guns, Less Crime would have demolished Morgan without challenging him to a boxing match. As soon as Morgan began pummeling Jones over his beliefs about 9/11, it was clear that his entire aim was to discredit gun-owners by association with the likes of Jones.  Of course, by then, Jones was quite angry because he knew he had been set up, but the problem with Jones is that he never knows when to shut up, and his own kooky pet theories know no bounds.  One would think that with his conspiratorially-tuned mind, he’d have been looking for a big ambush after his run-in with TSA on his way to this interview.

It’s not to say that Jones doesn’t air real issues of consequence, like the extensive coverage he gave to UN Agenda 21 long before it got any mainstream media coverage.  Jones is a constant critic of TSA, and the Department of Homeland Security, but one needn’t be a conspiracy nut to see that those agencies are fatally flawed and reprehensibly managed.  Jones seemed determined to point out Morgan’s hypocrisy, and yet with his inability to maintain his composure, a lacking he’s suffered for all the years during which I’ve been acquainted with his work, he comes off sounding like a ranting loon, and if there was a conspiracy this day, Jones was too incensed to see how he is being used as a propaganda score against the very cause he went to CNN to defend.

I think Alex Jones firmly believes he is doing as he should, and that he believes he is advancing the fight for liberty in America, but each time he gets drawn into one of these battles, he looks the part of the fool he had been selected to play, and he never quite seems to recognize that in the mainstream of America, he’s not going to score points with average viewers by screaming at the interviewer.  Instead, he looks like a raving maniac to most viewers. Rather than ranting, he should have mentioned the stories in support of his thesis that big multi-national corporations are helping government to disarm Americans, like Bank of Americaca that seems to be hostile to gun manufacturers banking with them, or how the Obama Administration is on record as seeking the assistance of big business in getting rid of guns.  Instead, he sat there  flipping verbal channels like the ultimate expression of ADD/ADHD, and in so doing, squandered an opportunity to speak to the issue at hand in a cogent, sensible manner.

Jones went to the interview armed with crime statistics, but as he rightly complained, Morgan was prepared to pepper him with factoids on the subject of mass shootings.  The problem is that sensing the snare, like a trapped animal, he exploded in rage, and rather than making his best arguments, he came off as a clown or a nut.  It’s not to say he didn’t say anything correct or worthwhile, but that the way he said it in combination with all of his extensive conspiracy theories made him look like a raving maniac. It’s too bad, because he made some great points until Morgan got him off-kilter, and from there on, Jones was in purely ballistic trajectory. He spews tenuously-linked tidbits of stories, strung together like a flow of lava from an erupting volcano, and it makes Jones seem unbound and disorganized like a library shelf full of books suddenly deprived of their bindings, but that is also the nature of many of his conspiracy theories.

Here are parts 1 and 2 of the interview, as aired on CNN, H/T

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtyKofFih8Y]

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tf-i3Y5iRYo]

Again, I think that Jones is probably sincere in his efforts, but sincerity is not a substitute for reason.  I think he’s right when he asserts that a gun ban will result in greater violence, and I also know he’s got an important story to tell about such things as the seeming correlation between some psychiatric medications and mass shootings, as WND reported on Monday.  As you can see by that article, WND was careful not to assert that the linkage is certain, but they relied on a variety of cases that are well documented and sourced, rather than innuendo and supposition.

In stark contrast, Jones frequently relies on a trail of bread-crumbs that he spots on a bakery floor, making more of them than might be reasonable.  Again, it’s not to say that Jones and his website don’t present important information, as they were among the first to run the story on the unbelievable amount of small-arms ammunition being purchased by the Federal Government, numbering nearly two billion rounds, for the Department of Homeland Security and other civilian agencies.  In Jones-speak, that’s enough to kill every man, woman and child in America nearly seven times over.  As I said, it’s not that he covers all nonsense, or that all of them are made-up, fanciful conspiracies about globalists, but it is to say that it’s hard to pick your way through it all to separate the wheat from the chaff, and all too often, there’s a good deal more chaff than hard news.

I rather like Alex Jones, in the same way I liked the entertainment value of other loudmouths in media from time to time, not as a steady diet, but as a diversion.  I know that with Alex Jones, what you see is what you get, and most of the time, it’s not smoke indicating fire but steam warning that the pot is boiling.  Watch and listen to Jones at your own risk.  At times, he says some very sensible things, things I have said myself, for instance indicating today in his interview that no entity has committed more murder than statist governments over the last century or so.  It’s undeniably true, and it’s likewise true that in each of the countries in which that occurred, the people had been more or less disarmed without significant struggle.  You see, Jones will say that with the passion it deserves, but when he then follows-up with one of his more outlandish theories, it wastes it all.  One might be tempted to take him seriously if he didn’t follow up every good point with two bad ones, an absurd one, and a challenge to a boxing match.

The most disconcerting thing about Jones is that he doesn’t understand the power of propaganda when he is made into its instrument for the other side.  CNN will make the most of Monday’s freak-show, and haul it out every time something bad happens and they want to discredit patriots, Tea Party folk, libertarians, Republicans, and conservatives.  They will hold Jones forth as exemplar of the nuttiness of the so-called “right,” but naturally, he’s not representative of any of those groups.  He’s one man, with a very loud mouth, and a microphone, and he appeals to some people, particularly young men, under thirty, because he’s angry and he’s loud and he’s obnoxious, but he is not the voice of reason.  Most of his audience outgrows him like a pair of high-water pants, wanting more depth and substance than the yelling man from Texas can provide.  If only he would stick to what he could prove, ditch the bizarre theories, and tone down the yelling a bit, he might just find himself with a larger audience, but after nearly twenty years of his yelling, conspiratorial rants, there’s not much chance of that.

 

 

Former Marine Who Told Feinstein “No Ma’am”

Monday, January 7th, 2013

No Ma’am!

Joshua Boston is the former Marine who published a letter on December 27th, informing Senator Dianne Feinstein that he would not obey any law that demanded he register or surrender his firearms and his right to bear them. Corporal Boston’s letter was a response to all the talk about gun bans, and particularly Feinstein’s proposed legislation. CNN interviewed him, and he figuratively stuck to his guns, telling the CNN interviewer that an unconstitutional law is no law. The interviewer naturally seemed argumentative, but that’s to be expected when a Marine talks to the press.  Watch the interview here, courtesy of Mediaite:

Feinstein’s office responded, saying she respected the Corporal’s service, but like most leftists, I believe the Senator from California is lying through her teeth. If she had any regard or respect for Corporal Boston or any of the millions of other veterans who have worn the country’s uniform, fought it battles around the globe, and kept the nation secure against all threats, she wouldn’t be considering this sort of legislation. Among other things, in his interview on CNN, Boston said:

“Whatever happens happens. I have a right granted to me by the Second Amendment in our bill of rights and it says ‘shall not be infringed.”

In his original letter, Boston in part made his case this way:

“I am not your subject. I am the man who keeps you free. I am not your servant. I am the person whom you serve. I am not your peasant. I am the flesh and blood of America.”

What I find interesting in this interview is the demeanor of the CNN interviewer, who seems to hold his remarks in contemptuous, laughing disdain.

“The law is the law, right?”

As the 8-year veteran observes, an unconstitutional law is no law.

This is another example of what I explained in my piece on Sunday about Confronting Ignorance About Guns. These people in the newsrooms are frequently factually ignorant of almost everything relevant to the issues they cover, and it is perfectly understandable why conservatives and conservatism never seem to get even-handed coverage in media.

To his credit, Cpl. Boston acquitted himself well in the interview, and he did the Marine Corps proud.

Semper Fidelis!

Combating Ignorance About Guns

Sunday, January 6th, 2013

He’s Coming for Yours…

One of the things that causes me the most consternation about the entire argument over gun control is how so many people who express opinions on the matter exhibit a complete lack of knowledge on the instruments at the center of the discussion.  More, it’s frustrating to realize that among all the voices chiming-in, there are a great number who have no idea why it is that we have the Second Amendment, or what all the fuss is about.  To them, it’s a simple matter: Collect up all the guns and the problem is solved.  Sadly, simplistic views like this aren’t very likely to bear fruit, and there is good reason to be skeptical about those who express them.  After all, before launching into a tirade against guns, or anything else for that matter, one ought to know a bit about the subject matter, but it seems to have become the fashion in America to speak with conviction on issues about which one may know precisely nothing.  This article is an attempt to lift the veil of ignorance that seems to shroud so much of the public discourse, and while my readers may know much of this material, I have no doubt but that there are millions who might benefit from the information contained.

The first thing that every person ought to know about guns is that many things have been mislabeled by politicians so as to more easily sway the ignorant.  Understanding what is and what isn’t true about guns first requires learning what they are, how they function, and what the different types of guns are, as well as their uses.  One often hears politicians talking about “fully automatic” weapons.  This is by itself a misnomer, because I’ve not seen a weapons system that is fully automatic outside of military applications, for instance like the Phalanx Close-In Weapon System used in our Navy.   That is a system that once turned on, automatically aims and fire projectiles at targets without any further human intervention.  You would not be able to contain one of these even in a fairly large garage, so let’s dispense with the nonsense about “fully automatic weapons.”

In practical terms, however, when most people talk about fully automatic weapons, what they are describing is a gun that will continue to fire one cartridge after the next by merely squeezing and holding the trigger.  I am always perplexed when media outlets describe a shooting with a semi-automatic weapon as “spraying the room with bullets,” since “spraying”  implies a continuous stream.  If the trigger is being re-pulled with each round, there is no “spraying” involved.  “Peppering” is a better descriptor, but naturally, the media blows everything out of proportion.  They may share an anti-gun agenda, but I believe another explanation is that most people in the media are equally ignorant about guns. Only with automatic weapons is something remotely like “spraying” possible.  Automatics are very rare in fact, and have been strictly licensed for decades.  There is a great deal of paperwork and taxation and licensing fees involved in maintaining an automatic weapon.

In stark contrast, what is generally regarded as a semi-automatic weapon requires an additional pull of the trigger for each round to be sent down-range.  The confusion arises because there are any number of guns that look just like their automatic cousins, but are instead purely semi-automatic weapons.  What most people know as the AR-15 is simply the semi-automatic cousin of the fully automatic M-16 rifle, first tested and fielded by the Army in the 1960s.  This family of rifles has been through several stages of development, and there’s no denying that they even share many common parts, but I can most thoroughly assure readers that an off-the-shelf AR-15 is not an automatic, and is not capable of “spraying” anything in the sense of a fully automatic M-16.  An M-16 has a maximum cyclic rate of around 700 rounds per minute.  This assumes you could feed it a continuous stream of ammunition, and that the barrel would not bow like a banana from the heat well before a full minute had elapsed.

A semi-automatic is in fact a self-loader, or an auto-loader, in that when you squeeze off one round, the rifle will by a combination of spent propellant gases and mechanical action eject the spent cartridge and reload the next round, provided one is available.  One must release and again squeeze the trigger to fire the next round and send it down range.  Military rifles like the M-16 have a select-fire feature that permits the user to place the weapon in automatic or semi-automatic mode.  Civilian rifles like the AR-15 do not have the automatic setting, and can only fire in semi-automatic mode.

The same thing is true of the much-discussed AK-47.  There are as many versions of this rifle in the world as there are manufacturers, plus some, but those legally imported into the US are all of the semi-automatic variety.  In fact, while it is theoretically possible to convert many of these rifles to fully automatic function, the jail time one would incur for having done so is hardly worth the trouble of modifying one, and depending on which model and so forth, you may have some substantial but delicate machining ahead of you.  It’s simply not worth it, either in terms of any perceived benefit, or in terms of the probable criminal liabilities.  In all the hundreds upon hundreds of gun-owners I know and have known, I’ve never known so much as one willing to entertain the idea.  We rational gun-owners enjoy our right to keep and bear arms far too much to put it all at risk over something so foolishly wasteful.

One of the questions I am asked by people who aren’t aware of the reasons for the so-called “Assault Weapons Ban” of 1994  given the differences in function between an automatic weapon and a semi-automatic weapon is why it was that such weapons were ever banned at all.  The answer is purely political.  So-called “Assault Weapons” merely look menacing, and as we should all know by now, politics is frequently all about perceptions.  If you want proof, consider one of the features banned in that law: The Bayonet Lug.  A bayonet lug is a machined block or other appendage on a rifle that permits the mounting of a bayonet.  I have never heard of a single person committing a crime with a bayonet attached to an “assault rifle,” and yet we are told that this is a feature that makes them more dangerous.  I don’t have any statistics to back this up, but given what I know about the world in which I live, I am willing to bet that more people are killed by meteorites hitting them in the head than have been killed by a madman with a fixed bayonet.

Since this is the case, one must ask what rational purpose there is to this classification of so-called “assault weapons.”  The answer is that all of the criteria are purely cosmetic.  Much is made of the question of magazine capacity, but frankly, this is a lot of steam.  Take your average Glock 17, a weapon that is fairly common, and sadly has been used in a number of the high profile crimes of which we’re all aware.  There are those who, apart from simply calling for an outright ban, want to restrict the number of rounds one can store in a magazine to just ten.  I say “just 10,” but 10 shots are plenty in the hands of a practiced shooter, because if you’ll head over to Youtube, you can watch videos of competitive shooters who are able to change magazines and resume fire in less than one second.   In other words, any perceived hitch in reload time is very minimal for somebody who is well-practiced.  On the other hand, for those less-experienced shooters who may simply be trying to fend off some home-invader(s,) a magazine change could take several seconds, costing them time and permitting the assailant(s) to close the ground between them.  Having a higher-capacity magazine is a distinct advantage for the less-than-expert home-defender, because having nearly twice the rounds on tap probably increases their chance of successfully defending their home particularly against multiple assailants.

The point is, however, that with practice, the difference between two ten-round magazines and one seventeen-round magazine is negligible.   Some will ask: “But what about Assault Rifles? Surely their magazines cannot be changed so quickly!” Really?  Try this video.  As you can plainly see, magazine changes, no matter how frequent, are of little consequence to somebody trained to shoot.  There are those who will say “But that proves our point about semi-automatics.”  Not really.  Watch this gentleman firing and reloading his revolver.  As you can see, there’s nothing about this that would suggest that some of the most horrific shootings we’ve witnessed over the years would have been even slightly different in terms of the results by eliminating semi-automatics. Perhaps this will lead you to believe that I’ve made the case against all semi-automatics, but before you jump to conclusions, take a look at this video of a seventy year-old bolt-action rifle.

What nobody seems willing to discuss is how often firearms are used in the defense of innocence against the insane or malignant people who manage to get their hands on them.  In one recent case, an off-duty Sheriff’s Deputy in San Antonio, TX prevented what could well have turned into another theater shooting by engaging a suspect who ran into a theater shooting.  This story received virtually no press coverage, but once again, what is demonstrated is how guns can and are frequently the instruments of salvation for the innocent.  Just days ago, a woman in Georgia shot an intruder who had broken into her home.  She hid with her children in the crawl-space, but when the thug came into view, she unloaded on him.  There won’t be a widespread push to get this into widespread circulation, either.

Just as our society is beginning to break down, and you may find yourself more frequently needing the defensive capacity of firearms, the Obama administration is trying to fast-track legislation to ban them.  This is another example of how the emotions of Americans are used against them by shrewd politicians who take advantage routinely of crises to advance what is nothing more than a political agenda.  It does nothing to change the reality that there are some sick and evil people who will make use of whatever weapon is available to do some of the most horrific things.  As Charles Krauthammer recently explained on FoxNews, the real problem is that we have made it nearly impossible to get a troubled person committed for psychiatric treatment.  That was true with the individual who carried out the massacre at the Sandy Hook elementary school, and it was undoubtedly true of many others.

Given enough time and opportunity, the insane and the evil will find ways to turn almost anything into a deadly instrument of mass murder, whether it’s a handgun or a fertilizer bomb or a Boeing airliner.  None of that changes the fact that one’s 2nd Amendment rights are not subject to popular vote.  None of that changes the purpose of the 2nd Amendment.  The founders, in their wisdom, understood that one might well have need to defend himself, and that police would not always be available to respond in time to prevent a crazy or a villain from doing their absolute worst.  At the recent school shooting, this was clearly the case, since by the time the police arrived on scene, the killer had taken his own life, and there was no exchange of gunfire with police.  In fact, given the circumstances, the killer could have used ‘slow’ revolvers to equally tragic effect, and nothing about the outcome would have changed.

The purpose of our 2nd Amendment is to afford you the possibility of repelling attackers, and dealing with insane and evil people who prey upon their fellow man.  They understood that there would always be good cause for self-defense, and given their recent experiences, they also understood all too well that some times, the evil and the crazy act from behind the shield of official power.  One would think that somebody would eventually consider the death tolls governments have inflicted on their own people over the last century, but somehow this death toll, numbering in the tens or hundreds of millions always manages to escape notice.  No other sort of institution has inflicted that sort of carnage whether private or individual, and yet we have some number of people who suffer under the delusion that governments are to be trusted as the sole armed defender in a given society.    I saw an interesting image on Twitter Saturday being re-tweeted around and what it said was that “a movie about a society in which only police and military are armed has been made,” and when you click into the picture, you see a scene of execution and the title of the movie:  Schindler’s List.

If this doesn’t make plain the truth of the matter, I don’t think you’re willing to be convinced of the truth.  Some people choose ignorance because it’s more comforting than actual knowledge, or because it permits them to take up the support of evil while pretending not to have known better.  Either way, readers should understand that there can be no rational argument for stripping the hundreds of millions of guns from the American people for the purposes of crime prevention.  The truth is that guns are simply an instrument like any other, and as long as there is man, there will be senseless violent murders, whether guns are available or not.  The only thing achieved by banning firearms is to leave millions of Americans virtually defenseless, and that’s immoral.  Instead of going after the crazies, the politicians are using this as an opportunity to go after the rights of law-abiding citizens, and for all the reasons you can already guess, you have every reason and right to resist it.  Ignorance should no longer be an excuse.  Those who advocate the banning of firearms are simply damning many more innocent Americans to deaths from which they might have protected themselves.  So much then for “good intentions.”

So the Politicians Want Our Guns?

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

Forced to Choose?

In the aftermath of the horrifying school shooting in Newtown, it was inevitable that leftists would use the opportunity to agitate for further limitations on the right to keep and bear arms.  Before the day was over, the Marxist-in-Chief appeared to make a statement to the press, a man who is himself perpetually surrounded by a legion of armed guards, and his basic premise was laid out: This has to stop and he’s going after guns to do it.  This is the typical reaction to these sorts of events, just as the last “Assault Weapons Ban” was passed in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing, in which exactly zero assault weapons were used by the bombers.  This is a fraudulent approach to a problem, because it has nothing in fact to do with the issue at hand.  Timothy McVeigh didn’t need assault weapons to murder Americans en masse, because the real problem is with individuals, but not with the implements.   Knowing this, I have a serious question or two for politicians before they decide to infringe upon our rights.  I want them to know what’s at stake, because taking such steps could do mortal damage to the country.

I’d like politicians to place themselves in law-abiding gun-owners’ shoes.  Many are like me.  I’m an Army veteran, and since returning to civilian life, I have never raised any of the weapons I own in the direction of another living soul.  I maintain a number of firearms for defense of my home, my family, and my farm, against both human and non-human predators.  Some of these would undoubtedly be classified “assault weapons” given the bizarre criteria of the last iteration of the legislation, but that hardly matters.  I’m a law-abiding citizen, and I cannot imagine a scenario in which I would employ my guns for reckless, wanton purposes.  That notion is with respect to the laws as currently written, however, new laws would leave us with a new problem should the politicians in Washington DC decide they must enact a ban on any of the weapons we already lawfully own, because if they believe that Americans are going to hand them over, they’re in for a bit of a disappointment. Why do politicians believe that law-abiding citizens should be punished for crimes they have not committed, and would never commit?

Many Americans will not yield their weapons. Will not.  Got that?  So, here’s the trouble: If by enacting a new law, people are made criminal by possession of weapons that had been perfectly legal, folks in Washington DC will be making a grave error in judgment.  You see, I am a big believer in what I like to call “Mark’s nothing-left-to-lose” theory, which states that if you make a criminal of a person by legislative or regulatory fiat, a person who has really committed no crime and no tort, that person really has no further reason to obey any laws.  Not gun laws.  Not traffic laws.  Not tax laws.  Not drug laws.  Not any law.  I think there’s something tragic about the sort of thinking driving this gun-grabbing mentality in Washington DC, but I also believe it is intended to garner the worst possible result, and there are those who will cheer at the carnage that will be wrought.  You see, they will claim the political shield of their alleged “good intentions,” but the truth is that they have none.  They intend to wreck this Republic, and if we yield so much as an inch on this, they will have made another step in that direction.

I am certain there are those advocating such legislation who believe they’ll simply send out federal agents to collect all the guns and thereby enforce the laws, and if they have a few shoot-outs with those who may be unwilling to surrender their arms, so much the better to strengthen the propaganda case. After all, it won’t be the necks of the politicians that are on the lines, but federal agents who have been directed to enforce an immoral and reckless law.  I pity them, because I know some number of them will doubtless be injured or worse, but also because I know some of them will disagree vehemently with this law, and away from work, they’ll be forced to live under it just like every other American. The rational thinkers among them might well refuse to carry such a law into execution, but sadly, the soft coercion of a paycheck is a mighty motivator.

There is also the social pressure, and it comes in the form of celebrities, media personalities and politicians making ridiculous comments about America and “its gun laws.”  Take Piers Morgan, who has “threatened” self-deportation if America doesn’t change its gun laws. Apart from leftist dolts, I cannot imagine the mindset of anybody who thinks this is an effective tactic. Will anybody miss Piers Morgan?  To me, this looks like an inducement to repeal some of the archaic restrictions on firearms ownership already on the books.  Note to Mr. Morgan:  If you’re going to “threaten” us, be sure the threatened action is something that we’d like to avoid.  As it is, and as his ratings demonstrate, I think Mr. Morgan had better start packing his bags now.

I think the politicians aren’t quite seeing the whole picture in such a short-sighted view of how things under a ban-and-seizure procedure might go.  It’s their operating assumption that the one-hundred million Americans who legally and safely own firearms will either hand in their guns at the appointed place and time, or if they resist, simply hunker down to await the aforementioned federal agents to show up for the obligatory stand-off and eventual surrender or massacre.  The problem with this view is that I don’t think the bulk of that one-hundred million Americans who own guns are nearly so stupid or short-sighted as politicians seem to believe.  The real question is whether politicians are so universally craven, and if they’re willing to convert millions of law-abiding Americans into criminals by post facto writ of law.  Do they understand that for some number of Americans, this will truly amount to an act of war?  Do they believe all armed citizens will simply go along quietly?

I doubt that all one-hundred million Americans are likely to be so docile, or so flat-footed. I suspect that if politicians enact such laws, or actually attempt to confiscate guns from Americans, there could be a rather different reaction based upon “Mark’s nothing-left-to-lose” hypothesis.  You see, I could well imagine any number of gun owners who would look at their guns, the impending seizures, their shrinking liberties, and simply conclude that “today is the day for the second bloody revolution.”  I suspect they would not be so slothful as to wait, huddling in their homes for hordes of better-armed and vastly more numerous federal agents to appear at their door.  No, I believe that if such a thing were to be enacted, the bright line between liberty and tyranny will have been crossed, and at such a point, it may well become an open season, not on poor federal agents who are being directed to such idiocy, but on politicians, media, and other public persons who support such nonsense, breaching the peace with legislation, prompting American gun-owners to oppose such tyrannical actions, and to show up at their doors with notions other than peaceful discourse in mind.

Naturally, there are those leftists who actually hope such a scenario would arise, because it would permit their shill to declare martial law, and so on, but the problem comes in for all those supporters of such policies who do not have and will not have a legion of armed guards to protect them on the day Americans finally become pissed-off, or otherwise decide they have nothing left to lose.  There exists a substantial number of Americans who simply will not yield to such a law.  This is not Australia, and contrary to the thinking of those who may have been led to believe the same sort of approach could work in the US, whereby the government would ban guns and conducted a mass confiscation through a buyback program, most going along quietly, there are still far too many Americans who realize the simple truth that a government that would seize the weapons of law-abiding citizens is a tyrannical master, and no longer an obedient servant.

One imbecile suggesting total confiscation is the governor of New York, whose only actual claim to fame is that his father had been governor of that state, that Bill Clinton hired him for a cabinet post as a favor to his father, and he used his father’s name and connections to elevate him into high office.  Andrew Cuomo called for confiscation, and here, Sean Hannity and Michelle Malkin discuss the matter on FoxNews:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZcUoKaN_PM]

This is a dangerous time in which we live, made all the more dangerous by the imbecilic sloganeering of politicians bent upon an agenda of destruction.  Guns really aren’t the problem, and they have never been the cause or source of violence.  Instead, this is a problem of mostly insane individuals who do evil deeds.  It’s a problem of people who are only loosely tied to reality or morality getting their hands on guns, or bombs, or airplanes.  There isn’t enough banning and seizing to be done to combat all the evil actors on the planet, which is the reason that we must retain our rights to keep and bear arms.  Some of those evil actors rise to power in governments, and occasionally, they too must be confronted with arms.  It would be an awful lesson to repeat, if politicians foolishly insist on replaying it here, now, in the country that had been the world’s most free and prosperous.  Taking away the right to keep and bear arms in any fashion isn’t an acceptable answer for a free people, and I pray a majority of our politicians know it.  It’s not a lesson a free people should be compelled to re-teach.

 

The Screams You Didn’t Hear

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

I refrained from posting on Friday, because while there was a rush to politicize the shooting just past midnight on Thursday in Aurora, Colorado, I frankly wanted to leave it be for a day.  Too many people in media were in too big a hurry to capitalize in some political fashion, and given the nature of the event, I must admit that I was spitting-mad.  I was mad at the culture of the left, for trying to immediately leap in to make propagandist pronouncements, and I was mad at the right for failing to see that one must choose one’s battles wisely.  The best thing for talking-heads to do on Friday was to shut the Hell up.  Most of those on the right did precisely that, but we also had the obnoxious spectacle of Mayor Michael Bloomberg attempting to advance his political position on the matter of gun control.  From the moment I heard Bloomberg’s comments, I became livid.  It had been bad enough with the episode of Brian Ross trying to tag the Tea Party with guilt by association, but hearing Bloomberg on the radio spiked my blood pressure, and I did something unusual.  I went off-clock, hopped in my car, drove to a wide-open space, and cursed all of these parasites at the top of my lungs.  Finished, I returned to work, leaving my most vicious contempt with the wind, where none will hear of it.

Having given this a day to settle in me, and having afforded the dead and their survivors the barest modicum of the respect they deserve, I am prepared to state my case:  These deaths needn’t have occurred, but it is the masterminds of the universe – characters like Mayor Bloomberg – whose preferred policies permit our people to be slaughtered by villains, defenseless in the face of mad-men.

Let me first state as a baseline of absolute clarity: One person is directly responsible for the deaths of and injuries to the victims in Aurora, Colorado. His name is James Holmes.  He plotted this cruel massacre, he planned his actions, he armed himself with vicious intent, and he carried out the slaughter.  He acted in cruel indifference to the liberties and lives of his fellow men, and for this crime, he must be tried and punished without remorse by the full fury of the instrument of Justice, wielding her sword without hesitation.  He must be removed from the face of the Earth with the deliberate action of the state in the name of the people whose rights it is sworn to protect.  Let us not discuss this part of the matter further, for there is no consolation or relief in it.  I don’t care for his particular motive, whatever twisted excuses he might concoct, or others might raise on his behalf.  He did it, and he must pay the only appropriate price.

Having covered the essentials facts relevant to the actor in this case, I now wish to deal with the generations of non-actors who demanded, through their intransigence, within their own sense of “moral” superiority, and from behind the fortress walls of the protected bubbles in which they live, that these victims be defenseless before the blazing guns of this mad-man.  I wish now to address the man who presides over the City of New York like a King, dictating that salt be stricken from the menu, that soft-drinks be limited to sixteen ounces, and that no law-abiding citizen may easily obtain a gun for his own defense.  There are many like him, and they are all equally guilty in abetting murder wherever law-abiding citizens have been deprived of the lawful ability to carry the means of their own defense.  Even in jurisdictions where concealed handgun permits are available, business owners, acting within their rights as property owners, often restrict patrons from bringing their weapons on the premises, irrespective of permits. Patrons at least have a choice as to whether they shall frequent such establishments, yielding their ability to self-defense.

What none of the political opportunists will tell you is that in every state in which concealed-carry permits are authorized, the incidence of violent crime against persons has fallen precipitously.  What none of these masterminds will tell you is that in all of the locales in which they have had their way, imposing gun control measures for their own nefarious purposes, these have become the deadliest cities in the country.  Chicago, New York, and Washington DC have among the tightest gun control regulations in the country, but they also remain at or near the top the list of violent murders by all weapons, including guns.   Once you have been armed with this knowledge, when Mayor Bloomberg addresses the media with his crass indifference to the murders committed under the shelter availed criminals by his sort of law, you should know that you are facing a man who is an accomplice, if not in the crime at hand in this case, then in others like it, numbering in the thousands, that draw little media attention because their victims number in ones and twos at a time, rather than in scores.

Do not tell me that we cannot know with certainty whether an armed citizen in the theater could have prevented some or all of this killing and maiming that visited this audience with gruesome indifference.  We do know with certainty that none were armed in defense of their own lives, and that the killer was unmolested on his way in and out of the auditorium.  What we also know, as Americans, but also as human beings in general, is that every person is entitled to defend his or her life, limb and liberty against brutal assault, but that none were able because they were faithfully abiding by rules that prohibited to them the instruments of their own possible salvation.

Make of it what you will, but every American ought to be outraged, as in instance after instance, killers seek out victims en masse, assembled for some peaceable, ordinary purpose, who are by virtue of the locale prohibited from their own defense.  To those who would argue that the killer might have succeeded anyway, given his body armor, I ask, since it appears by virtue of his booby-trapped apartment that he had a particular desire to take out cops if he were killed, why did he not launch his attack at a police station?  Why did he not attack people gathered at a practice range?  Why not?  He knew that the place he selected for attack was likely to be a weapons-free venue.  Unless there had happened to be an off-duty cop, he was likely to commit his mass murder unopposed.

The shooting at Virginia Tech was the same.  The gunman in that case struck where he could rampage unopposed, and it only ended when he decided to end it.  Major Hasan, at Fort Hood, knew full well that under ordinary circumstances, on an Army installation, despite the arms-rooms full of weaponry and bunkers full of munitions, soldiers do not walk around armed, and when on those rare occasions they train under arms, they do so without ammunition on hand.  A military base, should you penetrate its perimeter security, is a place where a shooter can rampage for some time without opposition, and Major Hasan was in the Army, so he knew this all too well.  He did not launch his attack in a restaurant off-post, where he might well be able to kill service-members, but might also encounter an armed civilian.  He knew his greatest chance of “success” in his spree of “work-place violence” would be where he would find legally disarmed victims.

More than two decades ago, when George Hennard rammed through the front of a Luby’s restaurant in Killeen, Texas, nearly within sight of the gates of the same Army post, he set in motion more than mass murder.  One of the survivors of that attack, Suzanna Gratia Hupp, whose parents were both killed in the assault, fought to see the concealed-carry law enacted.  She had a gun, but it was in her vehicle, as she did not wish to run afoul of the law, so she never carried it in her purse as she would have preferred.  Testifying in passionate words before the legislature, she explained how if only she had possessed the slightest idea that this attack was imminent, she would have risked all the sanctions of law to have her parents back.  Who would blame her?  She would have operated on the basis of the old maxim: “Better to be judged by twelve than carried by six,” but she had no idea an attack was only moments away as she walked into the restaurant.  Almost nobody ever does, except the killers.

We have seen these senseless acts of brutality enacted upon innocent people for too long to be mere bystanders caught up in the drama the media lays before us.  We have been told for generations that if we only stripped guns from law-abiding persons, or limited the types of guns, or prohibited this feature or that, our world and our lives would be safer.  It has never worked, and I don’t believe for one moment that the proponents of such laws believe it will have any effect, except perhaps to leave us defenseless against them.  Let me tell you what I do believe is their real motive:  They fear the day that we realize the treachery they’ve enacted, and that while they ride around in bullet-proof limousines that consume a gallon of gasoline in six miles because of their weight, and while they are escorted by well-armed bodyguards who are highly trained to react to any threat to their persons, and as they pontificate on the evil of guns upon which they rely to keep them safe, they have hypocritically, sanctimoniously argued that you should not be afforded the same privilege.

If you are part of the favored elite or privileged classes, whether a politician or celebrity, you will be afforded every exemption known to man, and you will be able to buy licensed private protection to care for your well-being.  If you are a single mom, on your way home from work with your children, you will have no such privilege when a hooligan smashes your window at a stoplight, sticks a gun in your face, and does unspeakable harm to you and your family.  If you are a retired school teacher, walking alone in the park, you will not have the benefit of such protection, or even the ability to defend your own person, outnumbered by multiple youthful attackers.  If you’re a young man on a date with your girlfriend at the movies, you will not be given the chance to defend her from a villain, all because the masterminds have decided you’re a bigger liability than you are an asset, by whatever twisted calculus they apply to the lives of we “lesser” men.  A father will be forbidden from wielding arms in defense of his children, because the geniuses have decided that there is an acceptable rate of loss to the inevitable mad-men who arise to commit heinous crimes against their fellow men.

Do you think the police can protect you?  On Friday night in New York, a police officer was stationed at every movie theater in the city, to give the appearance of security and to defraud the prospective movie-goers of that city into believing they would be safe.  Don’t go to the play, the musical, or the rock concert,  because all the cops are occupied elsewhere.  At this moment, the criminal element in New York is likely assessing the possibility of carrying out crimes at locations well away from movie theaters, knowing that the response times will be slower since the police are otherwise engaged.  Do you think thugs don’t watch CNN or FoxNews?  All around the country, cities are putting on a show of force at movie theaters, but that’s all it is: A show.

Ladies and gentlemen, we must no longer yield the means of our personal defense. We must not cede responsibility for our protection to the likes of Michael Bloomberg, who enjoys protection provided at taxpayers’ expense while we languish at the mercy of every would-be mass murder who would demonstrate that a “gun-free zone” is only gun-free so long as it is inhabited strictly by law-abiding citizens.  Too often, these venues are the precise targets of choice for those who would do others harm.  For once, as happened two decades ago here in Texas, the people of America should consider that rather than restricting the instrument on the basis of the preposterous notion that any one of us might lose our minds at any given moment, we ought again yield to the natural fact that none has a greater interest in or capacity for your defense than you. Not Mayor Bloomberg. Not even the most conscientious cop.  You.

Editor’s note: I realize some will take offense at my remarks above, particularly with respect to the Mushmouth of New York.  Tough.  His maniacal launching of an attack on the 2nd Amendment in the wake of this tragedy earned him all the contempt reasonable people may wish to heap upon him, and certainly much more than I have mustered here. He and his cohorts who opportunistically utilize such circumstances to advance their anti-freedom agenda are a blight on this country, and I will offer such charlatans no quarter in my assessments.

As for the people of Aurora, Colorado, particularly those who have suffered directly the grievous loss and the trauma of this nightmarish event, you have the sympathies and support of every American of good will.  When I have seen images from the scene, of first responders, health-care workers, and members of the community who have reached out to help their fellows in a time of despair, I am heartened by what are the inestimable good graces of so many fine people rendering all the aid they are able.  On this website, I often focus on the doom and gloom in which so much of our world seems to have become cloaked, but this day, in Aurora Colorado, while I see a grim tragedy, I also see reason for hope, not in some shoddy politician offering slogans, but in the actions and the fraternal love I see among the people there.  When I am asked why I am proud to be an American, it is because such people as these give light and love to our country even in its darkest hours, when it would be easier to simply turn it all off in order to avoid the horror.  I recently explained that I had been searching for America, and in the finest devotion to purpose, and in the greatest tradition of American spirit I’ve seen in a community wracked by terror, I have found her, and she is still thriving.  May those souls be at peace, and may America take their survivors into the bosom of her fullest compassion.

 

Obama’s Gun Control Agenda Won’t Be Stopped By Pesky Law

Thursday, December 29th, 2011

Laws Are Made to be Broken?

There is a provision of the Omnibus spending bill passed by Congress before the Christmas recess that prohibits the expenditure of funds for use in the advocacy or promotion of gun control.  In his signing statement, President Obama effectively said “to heck with that,” and said he would do whatever he deems “necessary and expedient.”  This is the behavior of a President who when campaigning for that office said that signing statements of this sort are unconstitutional, and that as per the constitution, the law signed is the law enacted irrespective of a contradictory signing statement.  I suppose we can file that one alongside his promise to be “the most transparent administration in history.”  This provision was to apply to the National Institutes for Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and other health-related federal agencies.

Obama simply doesn’t care what the law says.  Once again, we find the President implementing by executive fiat that which contradicts the law. Below, you can watch video of a discussion with John Frazer, NRA-ILA Director of Research and Information(H/T BreitbartTV:)

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEVnQwYEXfY#!]

This is simply another instance of President Obama’s willingness to ignore the law, even laws he signs, and it’s a disturbing trend we mustn’t ignore as we stand now just more than ten months from a Presidential election.  This continual imposition of his will in opposition to the law is becoming an epidemic.  He’s taken similar steps with other provisions of law via executive orders and regulations, and as you will remember, the entire Fast and Furious debacle was undertaken to give him statistical justification for those regulations.  If he’s re-elected, this will only grow worse, and we will be under his regulatory boot through January, 2017.  It’s time to make this President a one-termer, and send him home.