Perhaps The Locals Do Know Best

We often complain about national groups coming in and telling the locals how they should be doing it. This is usually in the context of a group like Mike Bloomberg’s Everytown, Moms Demand Action, or Giffords. However, sometimes it is our own side in the battle for gun rights that is doing this.

Such is the case in Alabama where the NRA is supporting a move to consolidate the list of pistol permit holders, that state’s nomenclature for a concealed carry permit, into a statewide database. The bills in question are HB39 and SB47. The bills provide for the permits to be standardized and issued statewide. They also provide for a lifetime carry permit.

This move is getting a mixed reaction as reported by CBS 42.

Bama Carry and the Alabama Gun Rights Network don’t always agree on the best strategies for advancing gun rights in the Heart of Dixie.

However, when I reached out to friends who are affiliated with those organizations, the response I got was virtually identical. They are opposed to the bills in their current form as they create a database of gun owners which has the potential to be abused.

My friend Beth Alcazar, the Alabama representative of the DC Project and a board member of Bama Carry, had this to say to me in a Facebook message. I’m quoting her with her permission.

At the heart of this matter (and why we are hesitant to get on board) is the fact that law abiding gun owners will be on a registry, with all information being shared, statewide, and this info. could end up on a driver license. This, of course, could cause problems traveling across state lines. What if someone is stopped or pulled over and now questioned or harassed (or searched) because of this identification? And what happens if a government body must be created to oversee this database? Currently, our permit info. is only in the hands of our sheriffs. A lifetime permit could open that up… from just local to state.

Additionally, the NRA doesn’t appear to be listening to Alabamians or to our state’s largest gun rights group, and they continue to push legislation that has potential problems or unintended consequences.

And therein lies the problem. When it is a matter of state and local politics, local activists should be listened to. That there seems to be a disconnect between local gun right rights groups and the NRA on an issue of local concern is not good. The NRA should either defer to the local groups or work to find a compromise that satisfies all gun rights groups involved.

We in North Carolina had much the same problem in 2011 concerning gun bans outside the home during periods of declared emergencies. Grass Roots North Carolina along with local plaintiffs and the Second Amendment Foundation brought Bateman v. Perdue. The NRA-ILA representative in North Carolina was pushing for a quick legislative fix that would have mooted the case. The problem with a quick legislative fix was that it could have been changed on the whim of the next General Assembly. GRNC, SAF, and local activists had to push legislators to let the court case run its path. In the end the General Assembly did that and we won a decision in Bateman declaring the gun ban unconstitutional.

I wrote back then (June 2011) that “there are some in the NRA’s hierarchy who believe the NRA has to be the be-all and end-all of all things Second Amendment.” I noted that the NRA does some things really well and others not so well. I said the NRA should concentrate on training, the legislative arena, and other areas where a mass organization can do well. I didn’t think they were nearly as good at Second Amendment litigation as SAF.

I would now modify my statement from 2011 to say that the NRA does lobbying at the national level well and should work closer with state and local groups on state level lobbying if they want to be effective. Moreover, by state and local groups I don’t mean it has to be the NRA state affiliate as the experience of non-affiliates VCDL and GRNC has shown. Whether the NRA and their state ILA representatives are wise enough to recognize this is still open to debate.

Guns, Politics, And Freedom Radio On NC’s March Primary

I am a guest on Paul Valone’s Guns, Politics, and Freedom radio show this afternoon. The episode will broadcast on Wilmington Big Talker Radio at 5pm this afternoon.

The show was pre-recorded and you can also listen to the full show on YouTube which I’ve embedded below.

If you are a North Carolinian and you have not voted in the primary yet, I would urge you to both listen to the show (or YouTube) and to go to my post on Grass Roots North Carolina’s candidate evaluations and recommendations.

Random Thoughts On AK Versus AR Magazines

The AK-47 and its variants are probably the most ubiquitous firearms in the world. They have been made everywhere from the armories of Russia and the former Soviet Union to the tiny workshops of Peshawar, Pakistan. There have been multiple books written about them and how they changed the face of war.

They have the reputation of working in all climates and in all regions of the world. They are not considered finicky as compared to the American M16/AR15.

Given all this, why are their magazines so damn finicky?

I just got a couple of orders of AK-47 and AK-74 magazines delivered in the past few weeks. They included magazines made by Magpul, by KCI in South Korea, and by AC-Unity in Bosnia. My AK-47 is a FEG AMD-65 imported by Tennessee Gun and my AK-74 is Bulgarian variant also imported (and assembled) by TGI.

The results so far is that the Magpul AK-47 magazines fit and lock into place. Their AK-74 magazines have required quite a bit of sanding and finagling to fit and lock.

You can see how this had to be sanded.

The metal “tanker” 20-round KCI magazines are working just fine.

Don’t even get me started on the AC-Unity AK-47 mags from Bosnia. Despite having metal tabs, I have yet to get one that will lock into place without pounding. Likewise, they won’t drop without a good hard slam from the heel of my hand. They are going to take some work just to make them into range magazines.

AC-Unity metal tabs highlighted.

In the past, the actual milsurp ComBloc mags seem to have worked OK. The Tapco ones were a bit of hit and miss. ProMag is to be avoided at all costs.

Contrast this with my experience with AR magazines.

I have used mil-surp, Colt, Magpul, D&H, the Israeli eLander and Orlites, C-Products, Lancers, and others that I can’t even remember. They all work. They lock into place and they drop out when the mag release is pushed. I think I even got Thermolds to work.

These have fitted in lowers made by Aero-Precision, Anderson, CavArms, Essential Arms, and probably others than I have around here.

The only explanation I can think of to explain this is that milspec means something when talking about ARs and not a damn thing when talking about AKs.

60+ North Carolina Counties Have Adopted 2A Sanctuary Resolutions

I have dropped the ball on reporting about the number of North Carolina counties that have adopted Second Amendment Sanctuary resolutions.

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa!

When I was getting ready to head to the SHOT Show in January, the number had risen to 10. Now a month later, there are more than 60 counties that have adopted such a resolution.

Map from North State Journal

From A. P. Dillon at North State Journal:

RALEIGH — As of the end of the first week of February, 60 of North Carolina’s 100 counties have passed some form of Second Amendment resolution affirming the right of citizens to bear arms. That number is over four times the total from the end of January when only 12 counties had passed such a measure.

Brunswick, Carteret, Lee and Lenoir are the most recent to join the movement.

The Franklin County Commission passed their resolution on Feb. 3, stating the county will protect the rights of its citizens to keep and bear arms and oppose any unconstitutional means to restrict such rights.

Onslow County commissioners met on Feb. 10 and unanimously adopted a Second Amendment resolution. By the recommendation from the county’s attorney, the Onslow resolution does not declare the county specifically to be a “sanctuary.”

Onslow Chairman Jack Bright said that they passed this resolution to let legislators know how their citizens felt after watching the introduction of laws restricting gun rights in Virginia.

The number as of yesterday is now 63. Moore, Person, and Halifax counties have adopted Second Amendment Sanctuary resolutions.

You are really starting to see the rural-urban divide when you examine this map. The largest counties such as Guilford, Mecklenburg, Wake, and my own Buncombe have not adopted Second Amendment Sanctuary resolutions. Lest you say it is Democrat versus Republicans on the issue, Guilford County has a 5-4 Republican majority.

More on this from A. P. Dillon:

Dara Demi, communications director for Wake County government, told NSJ, “The Wake County Board of Commissioners has not discussed this issue to date during its formal meetings, and it is not currently on the agenda for any future meetings.”

According to General Assembly Senate Republicans, in North Carolina counties adopting Second Amendment resolutions, 76% of Democrats on county boards voted to support sanctuary policy.

“You won’t find a clearer example of the internal fractures facing the Democratic Party. Even elected officials are bucking the extreme urban-focused agenda the Democratic Party elites are pushing,” Senators Tom McInnis (R-Richmond) and Brent Jackson (R-Sampson) said in a press release.

I would expect to see western North Carolina counties like Swain, Macon, Transylvania, Polk, and even Jackson to adopt such resolutions in the coming weeks. Likewise, I would expect to see more eastern NC counties doing the same. With both Cherokee and Dare counties having adopted them, North Carolina is now covered from Manteo to Murphy with some obvious exceptions.

Early Voting Has Started In North Carolina

Early voting started last Thursday in North Carolina and will continue through Saturday, February 29th. This is for the March primary for both Democrats and Republicans.

The State Board of Elections has published a county-by-county list of the times and locations where you may do one-stop voting. It is found here. The smallest counties have at least one location and the larger counties have usually 10-20 locations.

The Complementary Spouse and I went today.

Grass Roots North Carolina has compiled their evaluations of all Federal level and state legislative candidates. It is on a zero to four star rating. The evaluations are based both upon voting records (if any) and responses to a survey sent to each and every candidate other than those running for President. If a candidate blows off or ignores the survey, they receive a zero if they have no other record. I’m always amazed at the number of Republicans who profess to be “pro-gun” who stupidly blow off this survey.

Here are their evaluations:

Republican Candidates By Office Sought

Democrat Candidates By Office Sought

All Candidates By Office Sought

All Candidates By Name

GRNC-Political Victory Fund is separate from GRNC. It does make recommendations on candidates over and above the evaluations.

These recommendations are not made for every race. They are only made when a clearly pro-gun candidate stands out or when it is strategic to prevent an anti-gun candidate from winning.

US PRESIDENT (R)

Realizing that no candidate who reaches the level of POTUS will be perfect Donald Trump has refused to allow Republicans to consider the two gun control bills passed by the Democrat-controlled US House. Although the BATFE during the Trump administration did enact the bump stock ban, it also reversed the Obama-era directive to report Social Security recipients with designated benefit payees as prohibited persons under NICS as well as restrictive interpretations the BATFE rendered on AR-type pistols. In the 2020 primary elections, GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent President DONALD TRUMP (GRNC ***).

US SENATE (R)

This race is disappointing. Incumbent Sen. Thom Tillis has been marginal since serving as Speaker of the NC House and currently holds a GRNC 2-star (**) evaluation. A potentially viable contender resigned from the race. The two remaining challengers. Larry Holmquist and Sharon Hudson, each returned GRNC’s candidate survey with scores of 100 and 97, respectively. However, each has a history of running losing primary challenges, suggesting they are not serious contenders. Bearing mind that Tillis has the best chance of beating likely Democrat challenger Cal Cunningham in the November General Election, and that GRNC-PVF will likely be forced to recommend Tillis in the General, in this primary, GRNC-PVF has no recommendation.

US HOUSE

District 1 (R): Michele Nix and Sandy Smith both returned perfect 100 surveys, earning GRNC 4-star (****) evaluations. GRNC-PVF has no recommendation in this race.

District 2 (D): In contrast to our usual practice, in this race GRNC-PVF recommends OLLIE ONEAL NELSON (GRNC survey: 55%, 0-star) not because he is particularly pro-gun, but because opponent Deborah K. Ross (voting record: 21%, GRNC 0-star), the likely winner in this district, has a long history of opposing gun rights while in the NC House. Gun owners who are registered Democrats should be working to keep Ross out of Congress.

District 4 (D): Here too Democrat-registered gun voters should work to unseat incumbent David Price (voting record: 0%, GRNC 0-star), who is arguably one of the most anti-gun members of the US House, by voting for challenger DANIEL ULYSSES LOCKWOOD (survey: 60%, GRNC *).

District 4 (R): Nasir A. Shaikh returned a perfect 100% survey, earning a GRNC 4-star (****) evaluation. Challengers Steve A. (Von) Loor, Debesh Sarkar, and Robert Thomas refused to return GRNC’s survey, earning GRNC’s lowest 0-star (0) evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends NASIR SHAIKH.

District 6 (R): Conservative activist Lee Haywood answered GRNC’s survey with a 95%, earning a GRNC 4-star (****) evaluation, while opponent Laura Pichardo scored only 73% earning a 2-star (**) evaluation. GRNC-PVF recommends LEE HAYWOOD.

District 10 (R): Congressman Patrick McHenry has been a friend of gun owners ever since his service in the NC House, including his effort to ensure passage of a clean concealed handgun reciprocity bill. Therefore, we are deeply concerned that Rep. McHenry recently dropped a vote, reducing his GRNC evaluation to 3 stars (***). Owing to his long history of service to gun owners, GRNC-PVF continues to recommend PATRICK MCHENRY, but notes that with a primary featuring pro-gun Ralf Waters (survey: 90%, GRNC ****), Congressman McHenry needs to focus on avoiding the inherently corrupting influences of incumbency.

District 11 (R): Sadly, pro-gun incumbent Mark Meadows chose not to run again, leaving open this Republican-leaning seat. Fully 12 Republicans are seating the seat, the race for which will likely end with a runoff. Although several candidates returned GRNC surveys and earned 4-star (****) evaluations, including Steven Fekete, Jr., Wayne King, Vance Patterson, Jim Davis, and Dillon Gentry, the standout Second Amendment supporter seems to be Lynda Bennett (100% survey, GRNC ****), a Meadows staffer who has been endorsed by Meadows himself as well as other conservative activists in the district. Malicious rumors spread about Bennett that she was a “never Trumper” have been proven false. GRNC-PVF recommends LYNDA BENNETT.

STATE RACES

NC GOVERNOR (R):

Two questions stand out in this race: Which candidate is the strongest proponent of the Second Amendment, and which is most likely to unseat anti-gun incumbent Democrat Governor Roy Cooper. In both cases, the answer is Dan Forest. To be fair, opponent Holly Grange earned a GRNC 4-star (****) evaluation by a 100% pro-gun voting record. But Forest has demonstrated that he will go above and beyond for gun voters, including his unbidden attendance of a GRNC rally while he was Lt. Governor. With a 100% survey submitted each election year, Dan Forest has earned GRNC’s highest 4-star evaluation (****). GRNC-PVF recommends DAN FOREST for Governor.

NC LT. GOVERNOR (R):

Another race with a plethora of candidates, including no fewer than six who, by virtue of surveys and/or voting records, earned GRNC 4-star (****) evaluations. Four star contenders include: Greg Gebhardt, Mark Robinson, Andy Wells, Deborah Cochran, Scott Stone, and Renee Ellmers. However, only one candidate stands out in supporting the Second Amendment: Mark Robinson went viral with the video of his articulate, impassioned plea to Greensboro City Council members not to infringe on the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens. He has continued to be a vocal advocate for gun rights, including running for a NRA board of directors seat. With a perfect 100% GRNC survey, earning GRNC’s highest 4-star evaluation (****), GRNC-PVF recommends MARK ROBINSON.

NC ATTORNEY GENERAL (R):

Incumbent anti-gun Democrat Attorney General Josh Stein (GRNC 0-star) needs to be removed. Republican contenders include: Sam Hayes (97% survey, GRNC ****), Jim O’Neill (92% survey, ****), and Christine Mumma (survey: NR, 0-star). We didn’t support O’Neill in 2016, but hoped to after he returned the GRNC survey this year. But that was before O’Neill, as Forsyth County District Attorney, stood at a press conference to support Forsyth County Sheriff Bobby Kimbrough when Kimbrough announced his intention to end Forsyth County’s contract with ICE. Any attorney general candidate who opposes enforcement of immigration laws is unlikely to be sincere in claiming support for gun rights. GRNC-PVF recommends SAM HAYES.

NC COUNCIL OF STATE RACES:

Given that Insurance Commissioner, Treasurer, and similar races bear no direct impact on gun rights, GRNC-PVF elected not to make recommendations in those races. However, we did issue surveys into the races and GRNC evaluations for the candidates can be found at: XXXXX

NC SENATE

District 06 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends Bob Williams (GRNC survey 95%, ****) over Michael Lazzara (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 07 (R): Opponents Jim Perry and Billy Strickland both returned GRNC surveys with 100% scores, with both earning four stars (****). GRNC-PVF has no recommendation in this race.

District 11 (R): Patrick Harris and Dennis Nielsen both returned GRNC surveys, scoring 98% and 97% respectively and earning four stars (****). However, Lisa Stone Barnes scored 100% on GRNC’s survey and sponsored pro-gun legislation while serving in the NC House, earning a GRNC 4-star evaluation (****). [Note: An early version of GRNC candidate evaluations erroneously listed Barnes as having three stars.] GRNC-PVF recommends LISA STONE BARNES.

District 18 (R): Scott McKaig and Larry E. Norman both returned surveys with 100% scores, each earning four stars (****). GRNC-PVF has no recommendation in this race.

District 29 (R): Steve Jarvis and incumbent Eddie Gallimore have both returned GRNC surveys (with 98% and 97%, respectively), and both have sponsored pro-gun legislation in the past (Gallimore in the NC Senate, Jarvis in the NC House). However, Gallimore is the more devoted Second Amendment supporter, while Jarvis is being supported by “RINO” elements in the party. GRNC-PVF recommends EDDIE GALLIMORE.

District 42 (R): For this open seat, Mark Hollow (voting record 100%, survey 99%, GRNC ****) is a better choice than Dean Proctor (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star). Proctor not only refused to return GRNC’s survey, but also reportedly donated $1000 to anti-gun Gov. Roy Cooper and other anti-gun Democrats. Although Republican Party “insiders” (read that “swamp dwellers”) are endorsing Proctor, Mark Hollow, with his pro-gun voting record and history of sponsoring pro-gun bills while in the NC House, makes for the better choice. GRNC-PVF recommends MARK HOLLOW.

District 50 (R): With a 100% pro-gun voting record history of sponsoring pro-gun legislation while in the NC House, plus his 95% survey, Kevin Corbin (GRNC ****) is a far better choice than opponent Sarah Conway (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star). GRNC-PVF recommends KEVIN CORBIN.

NC HOUSE

District 3 (R): For this open seat previously occupied by Michael Speciale, the standout is Jim Kohr. A pastor who reportedly has “concealed carry permitted” signs on his church, Kohr scored 92% on GRNC candidate survey, earning a 4-star evaluation (****). Opponent Eric Queen scored 98% on GRNC’s survey (****), while opponents Guy Smith and Steve Tyson failed to return the survey, earning GRNC’s lowest 0-star evaluation (0). GRNC-PVF recommends JIM KOHR.

District 6 (R): In this race, both candidates scored well on GRNC’s candidate survey, incumbent Bobby Hanig with 99% (GRNC ****) and Rob Rollason with 100% (****). However, as an incumbent, Hanig has sponsored numerous pro-gun bills, clearly demonstrating support for the Second Amendment. GRNC-PVF recommends BOBBY HANIG.

District 12 (D): GRNC-PVF recommends LENTON CREDELLE BROWN (GRNC survey: 100%, ****) over Deonko Brewer (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star) and Virginia Cox-Daugherty (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 14 (R): Incumbent George Cleveland is one of the few long term stalwart Second Amendment defenders of the NC House, with a 100% voting record and repeated 100% survey score, more than earning a GRNC 4-star evaluation (****). GRNC-PVF recommends GEORGE CLEVELAND over challenger Cindy Edwards (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 15 (R): Incumbent Phillip Shepard has a 94% pro-gun voting record, 96% survey and history of sponsoring pro-gun legislation, earning a GRNC 4-star evaluation (****). Challenger Mark Price returned an 81% survey (GRNC ***). GRNC-PVF recommends PHILLIP SHEPARD.

District 19 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends challenger DAVID PERRY (GRNC survey: 99%, GRNC ****) over opponent Charlie Miller (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 20 (R): Incumbent Ted Davis Jr. has been a thorn in the side of gun rights supporters, with a recent gun rights voting record of only 60% and a GRNC evaluation of only 1-star (*). GRNC-PVF recommends JUSTIN LANASA (GRNC survey: 88%, ***).

District 25 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends JOHN CHECK (GRNC survey: 97%, ****) over Steve Matthews (GRNC survey 89%, ***).

District 26 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent DONNA MCDOWELL WHITE (100% pro-gun voting record, 88% survey, history of sponsoring pro-gun legislation) over challenger Justin Tate (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 36 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends GIL PAGAN (GRNC survey 89%, GRNC ***) over Kim Coley (GRNC survey 76%, **)

District 37 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends ERIN PARE (GRNC survey 100%, ****) over Jeff Moore (GRNC survey: 100%, ****) and Anna Powell (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 43 (R): Diane Wheatley scored 100% on GRNC’s survey (GRNC ****) while Clarence W. Goins, Jr. scored 91% on GRNC’s survey (****). With no clear indicators on Second Amendment support, GRNC-PVF has no recommendation in this race.

District 52 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent JAMIE BOLES (voting record 94%, survey 95%, GRNC ****) over challenger Bob Temme (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

District 59 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent JON HARDISTER (98% pro-gun voting record, history of sponsoring pro-gun legislation, GRNC ****) over challenger Allen Chappell (GRNC survey: 89%, ***).

District 60 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends RYAN A. BLANKENSHIP (GRNC survey: 96%, ****) over Frank Ragsdale (survey: 84%, ***).

District 66 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends BEN MOSS (GRNC survey: 95%, GRNC ****) over Joey Davis (survey: 88%, ***).

District 80 (R): This is an important race for gun rights supporters. Anti-gun Republican (yes, you read that right) Sam Watford, who GRNC defeated in his Senate bid in 2018, is back. This time he is running for his old House seat against pro-gun Roger Younts, who was briefly appointed to the NC House. Watford is being backed by RINOs in the Republican Party, and has openly expressed contempt for gun voters. In this race, GRNC-PVF recommends ROGER YOUNTS (GRNC survey 100%, GRNC ****) over Haley Sink (96%, ****) and Sam Watford (voting record: 60%, survey 71%, *). Bring friends to the polls and make sure to defeat Sam Watford.

District 82 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends PARISH MOFFITT (GRNC survey: 100%, ****) over Kristin Baker (survey: NR, 0-star) and William G. Hamby, Jr. (survey: NR, 0-star).

District 83 (R): GRNC-PVF recommends incumbent LARRY PITTMAN (voting record 95%, survey 93%, GRNC ****) over challenger Jay White (survey: 100%, ****). Pittman is a true gun rights leader, regularly sponsoring pro-gun legislation and amendments, and sticking his neck out for gun owners. Pittman’s opponent might have been smart enough to submit GRNC’s survey, but he is still the “swamp-dwellers’” tool in their attempt to drive out a truly pro-Second Amendment candidate who has a history of bucking leadership to support you. VOTE PITTMAN for NC House.

District 117 (R): This open seat could be a pro-gun pickup, since anti-gun Republican Chuck McGrady chose not to run again. GRNC-PVF recommends TIM MOFFITT (96% pro-gun voting record, 96% survey, GRNC ****) over Dennis Justice (survey: 96%, ****). Moffit previously served in the NC House, where he not only voted pro-gun, but also sponsored pro-gun legislation.

District 119 (R): Mike Clampitt held this seat previously before losing to anti-gun Democrat Joe Sam Queen in 2018. GRNC-PVF recommends MIKE CLAMPITT (pro-gun voting record: 100%, GRNC survey: 100%, GRNC ****) over Ron Mau (GRNC survey: NR, 0-star).

White Bernie Bro – “That T-Shirt Is Racist”

You know it takes either some sort of audacity or ignorance to tell an African-American man that his t-shirt’s message is racist especially when it is a t-shirt similar to the one below.

However, that is exactly what happened Sunday evening in Colorado at a Bernie Sanders speech.

A pale white Bernie bro told a black man wearing one of the t-shirts made famous by Maj Toure that it was racist.

“He had a problem with the shirt I was wearing,” this man said. “I was recording the event, he walks up and calls me a racist. But I thought, ‘What’s he know about black lives, about discrimination, or, for that matter, the representation of the shirt.’”

Throughout American history, the man continued, “Black people and their ability to own firearms has historically been very restricted. The shirt I got from a conceal-carry class.”

He said he agrees with Sanders on a number of policies but definitely not on gun ownership.

“I think it’s really a sad thing at a Bernie rally, when someone has a difference of opinion, that someone would be treated like that. I thought it really would be a lot more inclusive than that. It’s not a safe place to express differences. I would expect that sort of thing at a Trump rally.”

The Bernie bro named Tyler and the unnamed black man ended up in a scuffle. Tyler says he wasn’t the aggressor but that is not what the video from CBS 4 Denver shows. Tyler claims that T-shirt wearer was booing Bernie Sanders and knocked his cell phone out of his hand.

Regardless of just whom is the aggressor in this scuffle, Bernie bro Tyler shows an incredible ignorance of the historical roots of gun control.

I might suggest he read Prof. Nicholas Johnson’s Negroes and the Gun. At the very least, Tyler should read Dave Kopel’s article entitled “The Racist Roots of Gun Control.” He could also read the recently published Wilmington’s Lie which details the rise of white supremacy in North Carolina and the intertwining of it with keeping black Freedmen disarmed. Though on second thought, Tyler might object to that last book as the oppressors in question were Democrats.

From Our Friends At VCDL

Now that the Virginia House has approved HB 961, it goes to the Senate for hearings. This bill would ban “assault weapons” (sic), standard capacity magazines, suppressors, and bump stocks.

The hearings on the bill start today.

From VCDL:

Turnout needed!  Monday, February 17, at 8 am, the Senate Judiciary committee is going to hear HB 961, Delegate Mark Levine’s “assault weapon”/higher-capacity magazine/suppressor/ bump stock ban!

This is a key opportunity to defeat HB 961 and there is a good chance we can do so!

BREAKING:  VCDL has heard there will be an attempt to modify HB 961 to help save it from being defeated.  HB 961 is a disaster and cannot be fixed.  It must be killed in its entirety!

I suggest getting there early, as we will hopefully flood the room and beyond.

After going through the metal detectors, continue straight ahead and go through the glass doors.  Make an immediate right, walk down the hall, and make another immediate right to get to Senate Committee Room A.

Here’s what the current version of HB 961 does:

Makes possession of a large number of semi-automatic guns, classified as an “assault weapon” by this bill, a felony.  This includes many popular rifles, handguns, and shotguns!  You can keep any “assault weapons” you currently have, but you can’t buy any more.  The wording is so poor that you probably won’t be able to even fix a broken “assault weapon,” as each part is classified as an “assault weapon”!  Gun dealers in Virginia won’t be able to sell an “assault weapon” or any parts for one to anybody, include to gun owners in other states.  This will do severe financial harm to Virginia gun dealers. 

Bans magazines that hold more than 12 rounds of ammunition.  There is NO grandfathering!  Possession of such a magazine (keeping it at home only) after January 1, 2021 will be a Class 1 misdemeanor.  However, transporting such a magazine is a felony!

Bans suppressors, making possession of one a felony.  You can keep any suppressors you currently have, but you cannot purchase any more and you won’t be able to fix them if they break.

Bans bump stocks.  Any that you have must be destroyed by January 1, 2021.  Possession of one after that date is a felony.

Products For Review After SHOT

I received in the mail this week two products on which I’ll be doing reviews in the future.

The first is called the EndoSnake. It is a lighted, fiber optic borescope device that allows you to examine the condition of your barrel. What makes this one interesting is that it is small enough to fit down the barrel of an AR-15 or similar rimfire firearm.

It runs off of a PC as well as your Android/IOS devices. In a quick test using my PC, I had no problem threading it down the barrel of a .22 LR rifle.

The other product I received is a speed loader for Glock 9mm/.40 S&W magazines. It is from a Michigan company called American Speedloaders. I ran into the people running the company at the Pop-Up Expo at SHOT. I had a long conversation about the product with Sam Palmeter who founded the company this week.

It reverses the way most speed loaders work. Instead pressing down on the spring from the top and then putting in the cartridge, here you insert the cartridge in the loader and then push the magazine into the loader.

While this speed loader is designed specifically for the Glock, I intend to try it with other double stack magazines as well as extended magazines like those for the Glock 18.

I will make short videos using these products to go along with the review.

How Virginia Was Bought

If you wondered how Virginia went from a red state to a purple state to a blue state, here is part of the answer.

Michael Bloomberg played the long game, made many strategic campaign contributions over the years, and made Virginia his own.

According to the New York Times it started a lot sooner than the last couple of elections.

Soon enough, Mr. Bloomberg ramped up his spending on politics beyond New York. Frustrated at the flow of firearms from Virginia, a state with lax gun laws, Mr. Bloomberg tried to buoy candidates in the state’s 2011 elections who shared his views.

Then, in 2013, he received a visitor in New York: Mr. McAuliffe, by then a candidate for governor of Virginia. He proposed to Mr. Bloomberg that he make the state a decade-long priority, with an eye toward empowering Democratic supporters of gun regulation.

“I walked out with a multimillion-dollar commitment that day,” Mr. McAuliffe recalled.

Mr. Bloomberg spent more than $3 million in Virginia that year through his super PAC, helping propel Mr. McAuliffe to the governorship and electing a Democratic attorney general supportive of gun control, according to the Virginia Public Access Project. He has plowed millions more into the state since then, culminating last fall with a takeover of the state legislature by Democrats who are now seeking to pass a series of tougher gun laws.

It started with Terry McAuliffe, continued with Attorney General Mark Herring, and then down into state legislative races.

You know what happened in 2019 (corrected) – Democrats took both houses of the General Assembly.

Useful Pawns Of Bloomberg, Inc.

I address this to all the women (and men) who wear their red Moms Demand Action t-shirts. I realize that you think, though misguidedly, that you are doing something to promote gun control so as to stop the criminal misuse of firearms.

How does it feel to learn that you are nothing but a useful pawn in Mike Bloomberg’s quest for more and more political power?

From the (progressive) paper of record aka the New York Times who just did a long story on the interrelationship between Mike Bloomberg’s charitable giving and his political ambition.

Everytown is managed directly by one of Mr. Bloomberg’s close lieutenants, John Feinblatt, a former New York deputy mayor whose wedding Mr. Bloomberg officiated in 2011. Numerous people connected to the group said it channeled Mr. Bloomberg’s priorities, including his strong preference for working with both parties.

The organization came into existence through an almost corporate-style merger: Mr. Bloomberg already had a gun control group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, but he needed a grass-roots army to compete with the National Rifle Association. So it joined forces with an existing activist group, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, to form Everytown.

People involved in the group described being forced to communicate exclusively in canned talking points. Kate Ranta, shot twice by her ex-husband in front of her young son, was a member of Everytown’s network of survivors. She was asked to address a rally on the steps of the Capitol, along with her son. Standing beside Nancy Pelosi, then the House minority leader, and Representative John Lewis, she found herself stumbling over the text she had been given.

“Someone from Everytown wrote my speech. It was pushing their legislative agenda versus my authentic voice,” Ms. Ranta said. “I couldn’t say ‘gun control.’ It was moderate messaging — ‘gun safety’ and ‘gun violence prevention.’”

Other members greatly appreciated the new direction from Everytown. “A structure began to be put into place, and we could avail ourselves of the data that was offered so we could speak more intelligently,” said June Rubin, a Moms Demand Action volunteer in New York. “So we’re focused and single-issue and highly recognizable and speaking with one voice, and it’s powerful.”

The policy agenda was to be focused on tightening background checks; more radical ideas like banning assault weapons were off the table. “There were people who were very, very troubled by that,” Ms. Rubin said. “I became very pragmatic.”

More confrontational tactics were also rejected. After the mass shooting last year at a Walmart in El Paso, Tex., other groups organized protests to pressure the retailer to change its policies. But Moms members were discouraged from attending and told not to show any affiliation if they did. One Moms official told volunteers in a closed Facebook group that doing otherwise could “undercut our relations with responsible gun owners whose support we need.”

“Our goal is always to get results, and sometimes that means playing the outside game and sometimes it requires playing the inside game and working with partners who have shown themselves to be amenable to change,” said Maxwell Young, chief of public affairs for Everytown. “We’ve found Walmart to be an ally on gun safety and an example of a leader always willing to engage in productive conversations.”

You thought you could leave. You thought you could go your own way. You thought you and Everytown/Moms Demand were done with one another.

Not so fast.

Former members of Moms Demand Action, who had been cut off from private Facebook groups and blocked by leadership on Twitter, were surprised when they received emails from Mike Bloomberg 2020. Then they learned his campaign had rented the group’s email list, for $3.2 million, two days before he announced his candidacy in November.

It is like one of those messianic-led, off in the ozone cults. You try to leave but they will always come looking for you…because no one is allowed to leave.

But don’t feel too bad as you debate should you burn that red Moms Demand t-shirt. You aren’t alone. There aren’t many progressive or liberal constituencies that Mike Bloomberg hasn’t tried to buy on his way to grab for political power.

Climate change activists? Ask the Sierra Club.

Women’s rights? Ask Emily’s List.

Education policy? Ask NC’s Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson.

Abortion? Ask Planned Parenthood.

And the list goes on. Mike Bloomberg may engage in sexist and racist behavior and fly in a fleet of private jets but his money buys willful ignorance and useful pawns.