Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Why I'm fine with Romney angering Palestinians

Saturday, July 28, 2012

The H8 Lie

I've been quietly disturbed at something I've seen for some time, and it's time to talk about it.  It's the H8 lie.  California's proposition 8 has become emblematic of the Same Sex Marriage, or SSM debate.  Celebrities took pictures with duct tape over their mouths (though nobody was silenced) and "No H8" painted on their faces.  Others commented on how only haters and bigots would vote for such a law.  Smug and self-satisfied in their one-dimensional portrayal of those who oppose SSM, they have blithely ignored the truth.

Opponents of SSM aren't one-dimensional.  If there are some who are bigots or "haters," I have yet to meet them, and I've spoken with many people on both sides of the issue.  When it comes to the large scale, some 70% of black voters in California voted for proposition 8.  Will the Left label all these people bigots with no closer examination of the matter?  How about the majority of voters in the 32 states1 who have put the matter to a vote and voted SSM down?  All haters and bigots?

That's not to say the majority of voters can't be wrong.  In fact, a major reason we have a constitutional republic instead of a democracy is to prevent the tyranny of the majority and preserve minority rights.  Nevertheless, this isn't the world prior to the 1960's.  Bigotry isn't tolerated, let alone popular, anywhere I'm aware of in the U.S.2

For those baffled by what other reasons there might be to oppose SSM, I'll present a few.  David Blankenhorn, a liberal Democrat and president of the New York-based Institute for American Values argued against redefining marriage to protect children.  No doubt under extreme pressure, he's since changed his views, but may opponents of SSM still hold them.  Others have seen what SSM, legalized through court cases, has done in other states, and they don't want to see those changes to society in their own states.  The extremists in support of SSM are not looking for revenge.  They want to use legalized SSM as a legal cudgel against those they see as haters and bigots.  Never mind that if they consider opposing SSM wrong, a second wrong of vindictively doing harm to opponents won't make a right.  Still others oppose a redefinition of marriage, since as reported by the New York Times, SSM appears to be fundamentally different from what most of us consider marriage.  The fact that so called "open marriages" have a distinct designation indicates they're not what most people think of when they think of marriage.  None of these reasons have anything to do with hating gays and lesbians.  In fact, some gay and lesbian couples hold one or more of the above opinions.

Creating a one-dimensional caricature isn't helpful in understanding or changing the minds of one's opposition.  All it does is allow one group to dehumanize another, permitting real, indisputable hatred.  We certainly saw that by those upset by the passage of proposition 8.  We've been seeing it again this past week.

What finally prompted me to take the time to get these thoughts out was a facebook post by a friend.  He approvingly posted this:

Photobucket

For those unfamiliar with the story, the President of Chic-fil-A made a comment on marriage that has been unfairly represented.  Even CNN reported it incorrectly:
“Guilty as charged,” Cathy said when asked about his company’s support of the traditional family unit as opposed to gay marriage.

“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that,” Cathy is quoted as saying.
I've used strikethrough text on the misrepresentation by CNN.  Actually, in the interview, gay marriage wasn't brought up at all.  It wasn't mentioned, it wasn't discussed and Dan Cathy never said a word for or against or about SSM.  He only said "guilty as charged" to being strongly in support of the traditional family.  More details here.  I can honestly say I like pineapple and think it's the best fruit on earth3 and mean just that, without condemning, denigrating or hating plums.  I have never assumed anyone ardently supporting SSM was opposed to or looked down on traditional marriage based on their advocacy.

Any further reading into Dan Cathy's statements is assumption and editorial, not fact.  

Further, Dan Cathy's statements are far less strong than President Obama's past statements.  In 2008 he stated, ""I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. For me, as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. You know, God's in the mix."  That's not just, "I really support traditional marriage."  President Obama actually defined marriage as one man and one woman.  It hasn't even been three months since President Obama changed his position.     You'd be far more justified in believing President Obama is a hater and a bigot based on his past statements than you would believing it of Dan Cathy based on his.

Are there haters out there?  Sure.  When Don Perry, the vice president of public relations for Chick-fil-A died this week, the supporters of SSM gleefully celebrated.  I won't engage in euphemism here, that's just sick.4  Celebrating a man's death because of the expressed viewpoints of his boss is disgusting and hateful.  For all we knew at the time of his passing, Don Perry was an ardent supporter of SSM.

I'd also consider people who dehumanize their ideological opponents by making them one-dimensional monsters bigots.  I recognize supporters of SSM do so for various reasons.

I personally oppose SSM not because I care who marries whom, nor because I hate anyone, but because I don't think government should be involved in marriage at all.

1  The number of states which have voted on the issue is per a recent NPR report, available here.
2  This excludes bigotry against Christians, which is not only tolerated, but encouraged by much of the Left.
3  Note:  I'm talking fresh, ripe pineapple here.  Try to tell me it's not glorious.
4  Think it was a fluke?  Lefties did the same thing in the wake of the death of Andrew Breitbart, father of 4.  Disagreeing with a person's opinions is one thing.  Glee at his or her passing because you're hateful is another.

The Armed Citizen

This week I reread "From My Cold, Dead Fingers: Why American Needs Guns" by Sheriff Richard Mack. I do recommend the book for those considering the question of the 2nd Amendment. Unfortunately the possibly apocryphal "liberty teeth" quotation* is included, but the majority of the book is based on solid research. While it's a bit older, the statistical trends haven't changed much. The only caveat I'd include is that Sheriff Mack sees conspiracy where there may only be special interest or incompetence rather than malice.

Most of the book is based on thorough research and Sheriff Mack's own experiences. Several stories and statements underscore the desirable and positive influence of lawful firearms ownership in our society, including the following:

A group of Cambodians at a housing project in Los Angeles used M-1s and Kalashnikovs to put down an attack by the Bloods in May of 1988. (Los Angeles Times, May 13, 1988)

Drug dealers terrorized Piru Street in Los Angeles until two gang members were shot and wounded by a "block watch" leader, attracting the attention of police. (Washington Times, November 25, 1988, p. C6)

Korean merchants protected their property during the 1992 Los Angeles riots with "assault weapons." ("The 'Assault Weapon' Panic," Morgan and Kopel, p. 60) [Note: this reminds me of armed citizens protecting their lives and property following Hurricane Katrina, when many police had fled the area and the ones who remained busied themselves confiscating the firearms of lawful citizens instead of facing the criminals taking advantage of the confusion.]

Off-duty Army Rangers launched a "free-fire" offensive against crack-cocaine dealers in Tacoma, Washington, using handguns, shotguns and semi-automatic rifles, and driving the drug dealers from their streets. (Rocky Mountain News, September 29, 1989, p. 4)

It's clear that when the police can't help, or can't respond quickly enough, the concept of every citizen being part of the militia isn't a dead concept. It's alive and well. Gun control advocates would like to pretend the world is safer than it is, and hope that banning all guns will help make their illusion reality. While I'm sincerely glad that Americans are largely safe, and appreciate our fine police officers for making that a reality, the truth is we haven't gotten to the point that private ownership of firearms isn't necessary for safety and security.

We're nowhere close to the point where Americans should happily trust their government to be eternally beneficent. That is simply not the nature of human beings, unfortunately. The 2nd Amendment is as relevent today as it was when it was written, because as I've stated before, the Founders based the Constitution not on contemporary political theory of the 1700's, but on the immutable principles of human nature. The question of gun control is not one of hunting or accident statistics, or even criminal use. It is simply, "How much do you trust your government?" If it is enough to turn in all your guns, you may need to study more history and more of human nature.

Photobucket

When it comes to the statistics, however, honest review often makes skeptics into 2nd amendment supporters. Such is the case with Gary Kleck (a liberal statistician) and Professor Hans Toch. Toch studied causes and cures for violence in America for the Eisenhower Administration, and then firmly believed that taking guns out of society would reduce violence. The preponderance of evidence gathered since his opinion of the 1960's and today changed his mind:
"...when used for protection, firearms can seriously inhibit aggression and can provide a psychological buffer against the fear of crime. Furthermore, the fact that national patters show little violent crime where guns are most dense implies that guns do not elicit aggression in any meaningful way. Quite the contrary, these findings suggest that high saturations of guns in places, or something correlated with that condition, inhibit illegal agression." (Psychology and Social Advocacy, eds. P. Suefeld & P. tetlock, "Research & Policy: The Case of Gun Control," Toch & Lizotte, Hemisphere Press, New York, NY, 1990.)
Without further ado, here are the stories of self-defense.

When a young man showed up at Breaux's Jewelers in New Orleans dressed as an old lady-complete with a walker, purse, gray wig and tan dress-the ruse was good enough to get him buzzed inside. But storeowner Mike Breaux quickly saw through the disguise and drew his handgun just as police say the suspect started to pull a handgun out of his purse and leap over the counter. Breaux fired, striking and incapacitating the would-be robber. From outside, a second suspect fired several shots through the glass front door as Breaux and one of his employees, who had picked up the first suspect's gun, returned fire. Breaux was grazed by a bullet before the wounded man fled with yet another accomplice. The second suspect turned up at a hospital later with gunshot wounds to his neck, back and arm. The first suspect was taken from the store by ambulance. Both men were listed in critical condition. (The Times-Picayune, New Orleans, LA, 07/20/2005)

Gayle Martin was sound asleep when the doorbell rang at 5 a.m., but he didn't open the door because he didn't recognize either of the two men standing on his porch. He continued watching the men through his front window as they went around his house and began battering his back door. Within moments, the two thugs came crashing through the door into the kitchen and living room area. That's when Martin drew his .357 Mag. and fired three shots, causing the men to run away. "They were in the house," Martin said. "They had just broken in. I didn't let them get any farther." Authorities found the home invaders nearby, both suffering from gunshot wounds. Grant County Sheriff Randy Middleton called Martin lucky to be alive, adding, "He's a good shot." (Cincinnati Enquirer, Cincinnati, OH, 07/10/2005)

The two masked men who burst into a North Fort Myers, Fla., pharmacy demanding drugs didn't notice the pharmacy technician, who was a concealed-weapons permit holder, crouched in the back. When one robber leapt onto the countertop and waved a pistol at the clerk, the technician took action, opening fire with a .45-cal. pistol and hitting the armed man in the stomach. Both suspects fled the scene. Police believed the wounded man was a career criminal with 14 felony convictions since 1990 who was released from prison in January. "I knew for sure this guy was going to kill me," the technician said. "I was so afraid. I knew if I died, [the clerk] was going to die." (The News-Press, Fort Myers, FL, 06/07/2005)

Christine Peacock was pulling through a fast-food drive-through when a man ordered her to stop and hand over her belongings. Because she was in her boyfriend's car, the normally unarmed Peacock had a gun handy. When she drew it, the mere sight of the firearm caused the would-be robber to flee the scene. It was a scary incident that completely changed Peacock's opinion of concealed carry. "I didn't believe that everybody should carry a gun at all times; I thought it was too overprotective," she said. "[Now] I plan on enrolling in a concealed weapons permit class, and purchasing my own gun [to have] with me at all times." (Florida Today, Melbourne, FL, 06/19/2005)

Photobucket

If it weren't for a Vienna, Ill., woman's quick thinking, she and her husband might both be dead. At approximately 11:30 p.m., Albert Rolens heard his dogs barking and went to investigate, finding a partially opened sliding door. When he reached to close it, a man wearing a stocking cap, gloves and a large coat thrust a rifle through the open door and forced his way inside. The intruder instructed Rolens to wake his wife and unplug the telephones. The couple told the intruder to leave, but he refused to go without their granddaughter, his former girlfriend. After several tense minutes, Mrs. Rolens convinced the intruder to let her husband go to the bathroom to take some medication. Once there, Albert entered an attached bedroom and retrieved his .45-cal. revolver, which he pointed at the man, again telling him to leave. When Mrs. Rolens grabbed a cell phone and ran to call 9-1-1, the intruder darted after her. Fearing for his wife's safety, Albert shot the gunman once in the head, killing him. (The Vienna Times, Vienna, IL, 06/09/2005)

Just one day after a Dallas, Texas, woman sought a protective order against her ex-boyfriend, he confronted her outside her home, blocking her way. Upon noticing the disturbance, a neighbor came to her aid and helped her get inside as the ex-boyfriend left. Once in her home, she closed the door and the neighbor left, but the ex-boyfriend returned. When he bashed down her door, the frightened woman drew her firearm, shooting and killing him. "She was trying to protect herself," said Dallas police Sgt. Gil Cerda. (The Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX, 07/02/2005)

Photobucket

Other accounts of self-defense collected on this blog:
2nd Amendment Saves a Pregnant Woman,
Armed Student Saves 10 People,
2nd Amendment vs. a Serial Rapist,
Crime Spree Stopped with the Simple Presentation of a Firearm.

Failures of Gun Control:
UK Government under reports gun violence to pretend their policies work,
Scotland holds a Summit on their Failed Gun Policies, Chicago's gun ban continues to fail,
Real Women's Rights (This one includes one of my favorite personal accounts),
Opposition to CA AB 2062,
Knife Control?!,
Protecting Children through Gun Control?,
Futility of the Gun Banning Philosophy,
A Contrast to VA Tech.

Thoughts just prior to the release of DC v. Heller, with one of the best appellate court quotations ever.

Thoughts on publicized shootings: Shootings early in 2009, Alabama Shootings, Finland School Shooting. Remember: The only proven method to mitigate the disaster of a rogue criminal shooter is to have more first responders, e.g. CCW permit holders lawfully armed and on scene. These criminals do not respect "gun free" zones, but simply view them as target-rich opposition-free areas in which to slaughter innocents.

Carrying a Firearm is an Inherently Civilized Act.

Right to Carry Statistics.

Does Violence Beget Violence?

*The "liberty teeth" quotation is attributed to George Washington, but doesn't appear to be authentic. There are many quotations by respected founders that support the position of 2nd Amendment advocates, so it's not really necessary to manufacture new ones and give false attribution. I've tried to find a source on this and so far haven't come up with anything reliable. For the interested, the quotation I've seen is:
"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence. To secure peace, security and happiness, the rifle and the pistol are equally indispensable. The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference--they deserve a place of honor with all that is good."
There are several things that make me doubt the authenticity of the quotation beyond being unable to source it. "Keystone under independence" might invoke an arch supporting the idea of independence, but is awkward. It would be better stated, "keystone of independence" creating the comparison of independence to an arch, with firearms being the vital keystone or capstone. Also, "peace, security and happiness" seems more modern. Many of the founders probably would have said, "life, liberty and property." If the quotation doesn't originate with George Washington, it's unfortunate the author didn't publish it sans false attribution and allow it to stand on its own merits.

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Democrat Shame Culture

Adam Baldwin (follow him at @adamsbaldwin, he's fantastic) linked me a post today that I had to share here.  I learned about guilt vs. shame cultures in a Greek classics class at U.C. Berkeley.  The ancient Greeks functioned as a shame culture.  What does that mean?  We'll turn to Dr. Sanity's excellent post for an explanation here:  THE DEMOCRAT SHAME CULTURE

Joe Getty's Brilliant Letter to Chicago

City of Chicago Website Feedback Form
Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback.
The values that you submitted are as follows:
Categories: Questions
Subject: Opening a business in Chicago

Message:

Hello: I’m very interested in opening a business in your beautiful city and have a couple of questions and requests.

If it’s not too much trouble, could you please send me the official list of political and social opinions that I must hold in order to open a business in Chicago.

It’s recently become clear that merely expressing an “incorrect” opinion could lead to me being barred from doing business there…or at least having to fight Mayor Emmanuel’s disapproval every step of the way. It’s hard enough to start a business and create jobs without that kind of resistance! I’m sure you understand.

I would just try to guess which opinions the government requires that I hold, but in a recent case, you folks made clear that an opinion held by half of Americans was completely unacceptable. Guessing which other opinions the government doesn’t permit would be tough! In the case I alluded to (involving the folks from Chick-fil-A) the “illegal” opinion was the same one held by the President of the United States until very recently.

Perhaps you could put out a “government-approved beliefs” newsletter on a regular basis so no one engaged in unacceptable speech or thought. Those who repeatedly expressed views contrary to the government could be given special training and re-education so that they wouldn’t make silly mistakes anymore!

Again, thanks for your assistance. I look forward to being in compliance with all acceptable beliefs so that I will be permitted to earn a living.

Regards, Joe Getty
CONTACT INFORMATION
Name: Joe Getty
Email Address: armstrongandgetty@yahoo.com
Organization: American Citizen
Today’s Date: 07/26/2012
 Not familiar with the Armstrong and Getty show?  Find them here.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

You didn't build that reprise

Someone's ignoring the first rule of finding yourself in a hole.  I can absolutely see how he may have meant small business owners didn't build the American infrastructure that helps them thrive.  Of course, since they're taxpayers, that's simply not true--they did help build that.  However, even granting that's what he meant, it doesn't make the rest of the comments or the collectivist message any less damning.


Journalist's Guide to Firearms Identification

Obama's comments about AK-47 rifles belonging in the hands of soldiers rather than criminals have many people are asking if he's aware our military mostly carries the M-16 or M-4. He's just using the journalist's guide to firearms identification.

Guide2SM

A full-sized, higher quality version may be found here. (opens a link to Photobucket).

Obama Calls for more Gun Control--in New Orleans

Reading this, I'm left with the question of whether he's blithely audacious or ignorant.
Faced with a clamor in his party for stricter gun control in the wake of the Colorado movie-theater massacre, President Obama said Wednesday night he would “leave no stone unturned” in seeking new measures to reduce violence nationwide, including more restrictive background checks on gun purchases.
 Source here.

I'm not a fan of gun control.  It does harm to lawful citizens, it doesn't help them.  A call for more of it is especially galling in New Orleans.   The significance of advocating more government control of arms in that city isn't lost on the self-defense advocacy community.  When many of New Orleans' finest fled their duty, the officers that stayed confiscated the firearms of lawful citizens who desperately needed them to protect themselves from the rampant criminal activity caused by a reduced police presence and the disaster.

Firearms rights groups fought hard to have the guns returned and make sure this never happened again.  Now a tone deaf President is seeking to make New Orleans residents victims again.

Note, though Lefties will surely mock the Southern accents of the individuals in this video, they're people and their stories of violation by the police are no less real, shocking or relevant for the way they speak.



Firearms and Original Intent

I had a discussion on a social media site, and felt the results were something I'd like to share here, as well as be able to reference.  The discussion was about a statement that the current situation in the U.S. with regard to firearms is not what the founders intended.  They hadn't anticipated our times or technology.

I've often said the Founders based the Constitution not on contemporary political theory of the 1700's, but on the immutable principles of human nature. Thus, they didn't need to foresee technological advances. They knew humanity doesn't really change. Throughout time, human government has always trended toward the creation of a wealthy, privileged political class living off the labor of the common people. The best governments restrict that trend through careful limits on government power and popular involvement in the government.

So, what of guns in that light? Guns are the last line of defense of our rights. Remember, the colonists exhausted every other recourse before they squeezed off the first shots of the revolution. They sought redress, not bloodshed. Not only would they expect the same for us, but just as they did, they'd anticipate that we would vehemently resist any attempt to remove that final safeguard, that last place of resort.  They'd also insist that we should have the means to resist even the best equipped tyrannical government if, heaven forbid, the situation came to that.

Further, the intentions of the founders are important in understanding the issue, but not in determining the status of the right itself because the right to bear arms, just as the right to free speech*, was a common law right that predated the Constitution and was not granted by it, but rather guaranteed by it. That is, it is an unalienable right.  If we really want to get to the founders' intents, we can look to their further writings and see they meant for the right to keep and bear arms to protect us from all forms of tyranny, whether tyranny of criminals, tyranny of government, or the tyranny of hunger. It matters not the source of the tyranny, only that they meant us to always be equipped to resist it first with debate, but ultimately if necessary, by force.

*The concept of freedom of speech quite clearly predated the Constitution, as did the right to self-defense.  Benjamin Franklin commented on the freedom to express one's thoughts as a fundamental principle for any free country a half century before the 1st Amendment was introduced:

"This sacred privilege is so essential to free Governments, that the Security of Property, and the Freedom of Speech always go together; and in those wretched Countries where a Man cannot call his Tongue his own, he can scarce call any Thing else his own." The full letter is available here.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Our Plan Worked

Huh. Guess he doesn't follow stats on the economy.




Maybe he's just concerned about this statement:



Highest unemployment under Bush was 7.8%, by the way, in January of 2009. Great work, Obama.

Best "You didn't build that" Cartoon I've seen

This is simply brilliant. It's an image worth thousands of words. 

Photobucket

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Armed Citizen

A 66-year-old Montgomery, Ala., man and his handgun prevented a would-be robber from making off with a bank bag belonging to a church. The victim had arrived at a bank on a Monday morning, ready to deposit funds from his congregation, when he was approached by a man who forced him to the ground and took the money. However, the church courier stood up, drew his gun and fired a shot that foiled the crime. His attacker initially fell to the ground and subsequently fled, but dropped the bank bag in the process. All the money inside was recovered. Police said later it was uncertain if the suspect had been struck by the shot, or if he had simply fallen. (Montgomery Advertiser, Montgomery, AL, 04/19/2005)

The hooded armed robber likely thought the older, female clerk would be an easy mark as he entered a Tampa convenience store, brandishing his gun and demanding money. He wasn't counting on confronting someone like Janet Grammer. The 64-year-old mother of 10, a former security guard, pulled her own gun from under the cash register and fired, hitting the criminal in the chest. "I think he thought I was an old woman and would just give him the money," Grammer said after the incident. "I think I scared the hell out of him. I thought he was getting ready to shoot me in the head. My life was at stake." Grammer, who also has 32 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren, later said she worried that she had killed the hospitalized assailant. "It was very upsetting. The good Lord had to be with me," she said. (The Tampa Tribune, Tampa, FL, 04/16/2005)

Photobucket

A resident of Hempfield Township, Pa., tried, at first, to halt a 3 a.m. break-in at his house by firing two shots. The intruder allegedly used a fireplace poker and his fists to break out a pane of glass, but refused to heed the warning and then charged the homeowner. The next time the homeowner fired his handgun he struck the bandit in the legs and drove him out of the house. Police arrested the suspect and later said he would be charged with multiple offenses. None of the family members -- husband, wife or two young daughters -- were hurt in the home invasion, a Pennsylvania state trooper reported. (Tribune-Review, Greensburg, PA, 04/10/2005)

Photobucket

A woman living in Charles County, Md., initially turned to the judicial system to seek protection from an abusive ex-boyfriend. "I have been afraid to come forth and speak out for fear of him doing bodily harm to me and threatening to burn down my home," she said in her petition requesting a protective order. "The last four years have been a living hell. I am contemplating purchasing a handgun for my protection." After twice violating the court order, the man, described as a violent drug addict, broke into the home and began beating her current boyfriend with a metal pipe. This time she was indeed armed with a handgun, which she used to shoot and kill her attacker. Police said she had not been charged with a crime and that they considered her a victim. (Maryland Independent, Charles County, MD, 04/08/05)

Even after ramming a police cruiser with his own vehicle, a reckless driver in Blair County, Penn., apparently thought he could run from the authorities. But in the end he couldn't hide from an armed citizen. The pursuit began shortly after midnight when police unsuccessfully tried to pull over a car that had run a stop sign. After an extended high-speed chase, the officer on the scene broke off pursuit, but police soon found the suspect's vehicle overturned and unoccupied. Shortly thereafter, the county's 9-1-1 center received a call about a man attempting to gain entry to a nearby home, but responding officers were not able to locate him. A few minutes later, a second call from the residence said that the man had been found hiding in the basement. Upon arrival police found a cornered suspect being held at gunpoint by a female resident. He was positively identified as the driver and taken into custody. (Altoona Mirror, Altoona, PA, 02/25/2005)

A 64-year-old traveler from Arkansas stopped to ask directions at a Milwaukee gas station and soon found himself confronted by a gang of young men. A fight started, during which one attacker choked the motorist while a second beat the man with his own cane. Acting in self-defense, according to the police report, V.O. Goins then pulled a handgun from under the seat and shot and killed the 20-year-old thug who had been choking him. Officers responding to the scene found Goins' car keys on a juvenile accomplice. A Milwaukee assistant district attorney said Goins would not be charged. (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Milwaukee, WI, 04/07/2005)

Want even more stories? Visit the Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog.

Other accounts of self-defense collected on this blog:
2nd Amendment Saves a Pregnant Woman,
Armed Student Saves 10 People,
2nd Amendment vs. a Serial Rapist,
Crime Spree Stopped with the Simple Presentation of a Firearm.

Failures of Gun Control:
UK Government under reports gun violence to pretend their policies work,
Scotland holds a Summit on their Failed Gun Policies, Chicago's gun ban continues to fail,
Real Women's Rights (This one includes one of my favorite personal accounts),
Opposition to CA AB 2062,
Knife Control?!,
Protecting Children through Gun Control?,
Futility of the Gun Banning Philosophy,
A Contrast to VA Tech.

Thoughts just prior to the release of DC v. Heller, with one of the best appellate court quotations ever.

Thoughts on publicized shootings: Shootings early in 2009, Alabama Shootings, Finland School Shooting. Remember: The only proven method to mitigate the disaster of a rogue criminal shooter is to have more first responders, e.g. CCW permit holders lawfully armed and on scene. These criminals do not respect "gun free" zones, but simply view them as target-rich opposition-free areas in which to slaughter innocents.

Carrying a Firearm is an Inherently Civilized Act.

Right to Carry Statistics.

Does Violence Beget Violence?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Colorado Shootings and CCW Holders

Mass shooting events are horrific.  They're scary.  They leave us all reeling and wondering what we can do to protect ourselves.

The Left tends to immediately jump to gun control as the solution.  Unfortunately, there's no evidence gun control prevents or mitigates mass shooting events, as pointed out by John R. Lott Jr. in his excellent column, "Gun Control and Mass Murders."

The anti-gun Left won't ever admit that the statistics show gun control isn't effective.  The rest of us, convinced by logic and the data might ask, "What else can we do?"

Colorado's shall-issue CCW policy really can't be faulted.  Unfortunately, nobody in the Colorado theater was carrying, or was quick enough to try to defend himself, herself or others.

Others are saying a CCW holder would have no chance in a dark, stinging-gas filled theater against a Kevlar-wearing assailant.   Yes, the circumstances were horrific, and it wouldn't have been easy, but it certainly wouldn't have been impossible.  The neck, legs and arms aren't protected by the usual Kevlar vests.  Even shots to the vest can be effective in causing crushing injuries and incapacitating an assailant if he's not wearing stiff body armor, or a vest that includes ceramic plates (such plates stop heavier rounds and more effectively diffuse a bullet's energy).  We can only guess at what might have happened if the madman had met resistance. 

What we do know is that madmen have committed such atrocities since humanity can remember.  They're awful.  They make us seek for answers even though the motives of the insane are (thankfully) rarely comprehensible to the sane.

While we will never know how effective or ineffective armed resistance might have been in this incident, we do know disarming lawful citizens wouldn't have helped or changed anything.

Very well written in the same vein:  http://redalertpolitics.com/2012/07/23/the-gun-control-debate-and-why-the-left-continues-to-lose/

More clear thinking on celebrity calls for gun control after this incident:  http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywood/2012/07/23/response-jason-alexander-guns

Thomas Sowell with another angle and more excellent commentary:  http://news.investors.com/article/619174/201207231853/gun-control-supporters-ignore-the-facts.htm 

Colorado shooter may not have had a bullet resistant vest or other body armor at all:  http://ace.mu.nu/archives/331266.php

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Lies and spin from the Associated Press

From:  http://apnews.myway.com/article/20120715/DA011J7O1.html
"In a victory for Republicans, the federal government has agreed to let Florida use a law enforcement database to challenge people's right to vote if they are suspected of not being U.S. citizens."
Dear Associated Press,

This is not a victory for Republicans.  This is a victory for all U.S. Citizens.  Non-citizens should never vote, since they don't have the well-being of our nation and the upholding of its Constitution as their primary motivation.

The fact that you'd prefer to call illegal aliens "undocumented Democrats" and have them vote in elections demonstrates that you, along with the rest of the Left, also do not have the well-being of our nation and the upholding of its Constitution as your primary motivation.

As President Obama famously said, we all have to have skin in the game.  People who don't shouldn't be permitted to participate in making up the rules.  Most of our allies, including Mexico, will jail and then deport non-citizens caught voting because they understand this principle.  Perhaps you should devote more time to thinking about the matter and less to spinning it.

Sincerely,
    Andrew

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Armed Citizen

"This is a robbery!" someone hollered. Colton, Calif., liquor store owner Dan Lee grabbed for a pistol that was beneath the cash register, but in an instant he found himself staring down the barrel of a robber's gun. At the same time, he noticed another man climbing over the counter toward his mother. Lee grabbed his gun and shot them both. "He pretty much made the decision for me when he came over the counter at my mother and threatened her life," Lee said. After three recent robberies and three slayings of business owners and clerks in the San Bernardino Valley, Lee recommends that people in high-risk businesses consider what they will do in the event of a worst-case scenario. (The Press-Enterprise, Riverside, CA, 03/26/2005)

Shoats Grocery & Package is a small store where neighbors often stop for breakfast or lunch, but owners Bobby and Gloria Doster said two strangers who entered their business had more nefarious intentions. Gloria Doster was rearranging boxes by the front door when a wigged man came through it; behind him, another masked man announced they were robbing the store. One intruder grabbed her and pushed her toward the register, while the other kept his gun on her 62-year-old husband. As Gloria tried to open the register, the assailant told her she wasn't moving fast enough and shot at her husband. Not only did he miss, but his gun jammed. Bobby Doster then retrieved a .380-caliber handgun and shot one of the men while his wife drew a 9mm pistol she keeps near the register. They both opened fire on the other robber. "I was trying to shoot and dial 911 at the same time," Gloria Doster said. Police arrived about five minutes after her call and took the men to the hospital, where both died soon after. (The Augusta Chronicle, Augusta, GA, 01/25/2005)

The attempted holdup of a Charlotte area shoe store was foiled when a store employee returned fire against robbers who had begun shooting inside the store. According to witnesses, three or four men wearing ski masks and carrying guns entered the store, announcing, "This is a robbery." One of the thieves began searching store patrons and, shortly thereafter, the men began shooting. However, a store clerk quickly grabbed a gun of his own and fired back, striking at least two of the crooks. One crumpled in a doorway and later died at the hospital. Another man, whom police suspect was involved in the robbery, arrived at an area hospital with life-threatening injuries. Neither the clerk nor any store employees or customers were injured. "The [clerk] did a good job. He saved us. He saved my kid. He saved our lives," said store customer Ramon Lopez. (The Charlotte Observer, Charlotte, NC, 02/26/2005)

A pit bull had mauled a 3-year-old boy and was biting the youngster's mother when a passing motorist stopped to see what was going on. Corey Kelley said that at first he thought Shonda Busby was playing with the dog in the family's rural yard in Chatom, Ala. He turned his truck around for another look and saw blood. "The closer I got to her, I could see the blood and bite marks on her arms. I pulled up and said, Are you alive?' She said, 'Yes, get this dog off me. He's biting me; he's killing me.'" Kelley quickly drove home, called 911 and grabbed his .22caliber rifle. Unaware that Busby was shielding her 3-year-old, her rescuer said he drove as close as he could, about 8 feet away. From his truck, he aimed at the dog and told Busby to lie as still as she could. "Shoot!" she told him. Kelly's mortal shot hit the animal between the eyes. When Busby sat up, Kelley saw the little boy; his scalp was torn and there were bite marks all over his body. Following the tragedy, the child was treated at Children's Hospital and was in fair condition. His mother required surgery. Kelley said he did not feel like a hero. "I'd do it again in a heartbeat," he said. "I'm just an old country boy. Helping people is just something I like doing." (The Birmingham News, Birmingham, AL, 03/05/2005)

An employee of a St. Louis gas station sent a would-be armed robber running for his life when the clerk pulled a pistol from his waistband and began firing at him. The 24-year-old clerk told police a man appearing to be in his 20s and dressed in dark clothing entered the station, pulled a mask down over part of his face, produced a handgun and announced a holdup. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, St. Louis, MO, 03/23/2005)

A Jacksonville, Fla., cabbie was dropping off two passengers when a robber with a gun burst onto the scene. The cab driver halted the attack by shooting the culprit in the chest. Police said the criminal, who died at the scene, had been hiding in the bushes and made his move as the passengers were exiting the car. (Florida Today, Jacksonville, FL, 03/20/2005)

Want even more stories? Visit the Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog.

Other accounts of self-defense collected on this blog:
2nd Amendment Saves a Pregnant Woman,
Armed Student Saves 10 People,
2nd Amendment vs. a Serial Rapist,
Crime Spree Stopped with the Simple Presentation of a Firearm.

Failures of Gun Control:
UK Government under reports gun violence to pretend their policies work,
Scotland holds a Summit on their Failed Gun Policies, Chicago's gun ban continues to fail,
Real Women's Rights (This one includes one of my favorite personal accounts),
Opposition to CA AB 2062,
Knife Control?!,
Protecting Children through Gun Control?,
Futility of the Gun Banning Philosophy,
A Contrast to VA Tech.

Thoughts just prior to the release of DC v. Heller, with one of the best appellate court quotations ever.

Thoughts on publicized shootings: Shootings early in 2009, Alabama Shootings, Finland School Shooting. Remember: The only proven method to mitigate the disaster of a rogue criminal shooter is to have more first responders, e.g. CCW permit holders lawfully armed and on scene. These criminals do not respect "gun free" zones, but simply view them as target-rich opposition-free areas in which to slaughter innocents.

Carrying a Firearm is an Inherently Civilized Act.

Right to Carry Statistics.

Does Violence Beget Violence?

Friday, July 13, 2012

Attacking the Successful isn't helping Obama

Class warfare has been a traditionally successful divide and conquer strategy for the Left. 

President Obama may be taking it too far, however.  Despite all the attacks on Romney, 75% of voters say they don't care that he's wealthy.
Three-quarters of registered voters say the fact that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is worth more than $200 million makes no difference to their likelihood of voting for him. However, 20% of voters, mostly Democrats and independents, say Romney's wealth makes them less likely to vote for him, while 4% say it makes them more likely.
Wonder if Obama's wealth bothers them, or if the expensive vacations Michelle takes at their expense bother them.

The tactic may even be costing Obama with his supporters.  It certainly has with millionaire developer R. Donahue Peebles:
 "What I get concerned about is the message from the Obama campaign that we only want someone who has not been successful to run for president. What do we want here? You can't be successful and run the country? We don't want somebody who has been successful to run it? That doesn't make sense," Peebles said. "So I look at that and I see that those things are becoming offensive to some of his strongest supporters, financially...

"I'm so tired of hearing that the rich are not paying their fair share of taxes. Yeah we are," Peebles said. "The super vast majority of wealthy Americans do not wake up every day and say, 'Let's see how we can pay less than our fair share of taxes.' They say, 'We're going to follow the law and we're going to hire some good accountants to tell us how to do it. And we're going to pay no more or no less than our fair share.'

"So to say that wealthy individuals are not paying their fair is unfair and delusional," he said. "So what should be said is that the wealthy Americans should have their tax rates raised because we need more money. Now by the way, if they got all these tax raises it still wouldn't put a dent in the national debt...

"We cannot attack wealth creation and attack people just because they're wealthy and we can't attack wealth and success, and making that a bad thing. It's like going to school and the bullies picking on the A-students, calling them nerds and so forth. So, what do we want, a whole school of dummies?"
Yet Mr. Peebles says he's not on the fence, so his support won't be affected.
"That offended me. Now if I were on the fence, he'd have lost me," said Peebles, who described himself as nonetheless a "big supporter of the president's."
Mr. Peebles, you say Obama awoke the giant.
"And so what's happening is they've awakened a sleeping giant. This time around, business leaders, business executives and corporations will be involved in the political process like they've never been before, all because they've been awakened," he said.
What will it take to wake you up?

If you support the free market, if you believe equality of opportunity, not equality of outcome is an American value, Obama is not your candidate.  It's time to look past party, identity politics and even personal charisma and vote according to your principles.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Armed Citizen

Georgia Belle Sullivan of Clinton, Louisiana, will never know if her former employee, Arthur Sanford, came back for money, revenge, or both. Sullivan was up late watching television when she heard a noise that caused her two dogs to start barking wildly. She took her pistol and went to investigate, but before she full realized what was happening a shadowy figure lunged at her. Although she fired at the intruder, he kept coming and the two struggled for the gun. Sullivan said, "He beat me with his fists. He was trying to get the gun out of my hand, but he never did." Sanford continued to attack, saying that he wanted money, until his grip finally loosened and he died on the spot from the gunshot wound to his chest. Sanford had worked on Sullivan's cattle farm for years, but had been fired three years earlier because of suspected drug use. Sanford also had a history of arrests for armed robbery. (2theadvocate.com, Baton Rouge, LA, 02/17/2005)

"It's not in my nature to even kill a mouse, but he forced it and I do not feel guilty of any wrongdoing," said an 84-year-old homeowner in Mishawaka, Indiana. The local police agreed that this was a justifiable shooting. Robert Birtwhistle had been awakened about 1 A.M. to the sounds of his front door being kicked in. He took his pistol and went downstairs, warning the intruder to stop or "he was gonig to get what was coming to him." The intruder, however, kept trying to get in and eventually broke down the door. Birtwhistle fired once, and the intruder fell to the floor. When police arrived, the intruder was pronounced dead at the scene; he was later identified as James Rosebush, who lived only blocks away. Police commented that it was possible Birtwhistle was targeted because of his age, which would lead the criminals to believe he was an "easy target." (The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, In, 02/18/2005)

For the second time in four days, a New Orleans, La., armed citizen turned the tables on would-be robbers. In this instance, according to authorities, two teenage brothers, Micah and Darius Adams, approached an unidentified man who was returning to his car late one night. Just as the man reached his car, Micah Adams drew a gun and demanded money. The man produced his own firearm and fired at Adams, hitting him several times in the torso. Although he tried to escape, Micah Adams was later found dead on a nearby street. Darius Adams was subsequently apprehended by police and was facing murder charges since he was accused of helping to commit a felony that resulted in a death. (TheTimes-Picayune, New Orleans, LA, 02/06/2005)

A 24-year-old Long Beach, Calif., resident was sitting in his car at a fastfood restaurant when an armed man forced his way into the car. The carjacker, later identified as Maurice Adams, ordered the victim at gunpoint to drive to another neighborhood and then robbed him. While Adams was rooting through the trunk looking for more items, the victim grabbed his own gun, which was concealed in the glove compartment, and began to run. Adams opened fire on the victim, striking him; in turn, Adams was shot multiple times by the victim. Adams died shortly after arriving at the hospital. The victim, whose name was withheld for his own protection, was said to be recovering from his wounds. (Press-Telegram, Los Angeles, CA, 01/22/2005)

"This is something you read about happening to someone else. You never think it will happen to you," said Linda Fixler of Bardonia, N.Y. Her husband was working alone in their jewelry store early one morning when two men came in asking to look at some engagement rings. After a few minutes both pulled out guns, aimed them at Fixler and threatened to kill him. During the course of the robbery, however, Fixler was able to retrieve his own handgun and shoot one of the robbers who fell to the floor seriously injured while the other fled on foot. The fleeing robber was later apprehended along with a third man who was in the "get-away" vehicle, but had driven off when he heard the gunshots. "It's a terrible feeling," said Fixler. "All you want to do is stay alive." (thejournalnews.com, White Plains, NY, 02/15/2005)

Thanks to the quick thinking of a sub shop owner in Dayton, Ohio, a robbery attempt was quickly thwarted. The manager and his wife were working the morning shift when they spotted a man with a mask and sunglasses heading toward the store with a gun in hand. The owner triggered the security system and retrieved his gun. One employee described what happened next: "[The suspect] got up on the counter. I was scared. I just dropped to the floor." The robber, however, who was pointing his gun at the manager, did not even have time to speak because the manager pointed his gun and shot him in the arm. He fled and was later apprehended at his sister's house. He was expected to be charged with aggravated robbery. (Dayton Daily News, Dayton, OH, 01/15/2005)

Armed citizen stories are taken from American Rifleman magazine. You may subscribe to American Rifleman by joining the NRA. "If you have a firsthand 'Armed Citizen' experience, call NRA-ILA PR/Communications at (703) 267-1193. Studies indicate that firearms are used over 2 million times a year for personal protection, and that the presence of a firearm, without a shot being fired, prevents crime in many instances. Shooting usually can be justified only where crime constitutes an immediate, imminent threat to life, limb, or in some cases, property. Anyone is free to quote or reproduce these accounts. Send clippings to: 'The Armed Citizen,' 11250 Waples Mill Road, Fairfax, VA 22030-9400."

Want even more stories? Visit the Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog.

Other accounts of self-defense collected on this blog:
2nd Amendment Saves a Pregnant Woman,
Armed Student Saves 10 People,
2nd Amendment vs. a Serial Rapist,
Crime Spree Stopped with the Simple Presentation of a Firearm.

Failures of Gun Control:
UK Government under reports gun violence to pretend their policies work,
Scotland holds a Summit on their Failed Gun Policies, Chicago's gun ban continues to fail,
Real Women's Rights (This one includes one of my favorite personal accounts),
Opposition to CA AB 2062,
Knife Control?!,
Protecting Children through Gun Control?,
Futility of the Gun Banning Philosophy,
A Contrast to VA Tech.

Thoughts just prior to the release of DC v. Heller, with one of the best appellate court quotations ever.

Thoughts on publicized shootings: Shootings early in 2009, Alabama Shootings, Finland School Shooting. Remember: The only proven method to mitigate the disaster of a rogue criminal shooter is to have more first responders, e.g. CCW permit holders lawfully armed and on scene. These criminals do not respect "gun free" zones, but simply view them as target-rich opposition-free areas in which to slaughter innocents.

Carrying a Firearm is an Inherently Civilized Act.

Does Violence Beget Violence?

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Real Independence Day

In light of the Supreme Court's atrocious decision Thursday, I felt like it was time for a repost of this.

I'm flying my U.S. flag on tomorrow in remembrance of the real Independence day. U.S. Independence wasn’t declared on July 4, 1776. The General Congress actually passed the motion to declare independence on July 2, 1776 and the printing of the Declaration took place on July 4, 1776. John Adams expected that future generations would likely commemorate July 2nd as our Independence day.

Sorry, John, we’ve forgotten. Well, most of us have. The concept of government by the people, of the people and for the people seems all but forgotten. The Supreme Court chose to move the power of taxation from the sole province of the most accountable body of government (the House of Representatives) to the least accountable body (the Supreme Court of the United States).  We have a man in the White House who views the Constitution as a "Charter of Negative Liberties" and is doing his best to trample it.  The principles of government answerable to the people should be written in the hearts and minds of all citizens of this nation, whether their ancestors stepped off the Mayflower or they had their Oath of Allegiance and gained their citizenship yesterday.

So, tomorrow I’m flying my flag in memory of the rights I should have but only kind of do. We should have a tax structure that guards our private records from search and seizure. I should be able to carry a firearm in defense of myself, my family and my beloved nation if I so desire. I should feel that the money I do contribute to my government is going to good causes–causes we can all stand behind. Most of all, as I go about my day, I should feel free to do so with minimal government interference yet without fear from scofflaws and criminals.

Might we all remember the true spirit of independence and the real meaning of our Constitution is my fervent hope as I remember the beginning of this great nation this week. Fly your flag Monday, and remember what it’s really all about. Fly it Wednesday, too, and set off some fireworks. Of greatest importance, never let your elected official take you for granted or think you’ve forgotten what the brave actions of this nation’s founders really meant.

Happy Independence Day!