A Trip Down The Anti-Gun Memory Lane

Miguel at Gunfreezone.net pointed out a tweet yesterday by Ladd Everitt that brought back memories.

Ladd had been the Director of Communications for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (sic) before he headed off to be Executive Director of George Takai’s anti-gun organization One Pulse for America. He and CSGV’s Executive Director Josh Horwitz loved nothing better than labeling gun rights activists and Second Amendment supporters as “insurrectionists” back during the Obama years. It was their favorite epithet and Josh wrote long articles about insurrectionism for the Huffington Post as well as a book entitled, “Guns, Democracy and the Insurrectionist Idea.”

Here is an example from 2011 when this blog wasn’t even a year old. It was in reference to the Tucson shooting of then-Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) and others.

Sadly, Saturday’s tragedy was both predictable and inevitable. Insurrectionist rhetoric—which posits that the Second Amendment gives individuals the right to take violent action when they believe that our government has become “tyrannical”—was once confined to the dark corners of gun shows and the Internet. In today’s America, however, it has become a “mainstream” idea that is widely promoted by movement conservatives, high-profile media figures, and even elected officials and candidates. Tucson was not unique—since the conservative wing of the Supreme Court embraced the insurrectionist idea in the D.C. v. Heller decision in 2008, there have been numerous threats and acts of violence against government officials.

Ladd hated pro-gun politicians like Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) whom he labeled an “insurrectionist thug”. That should been Senator Insurrectionist Thug.

We in the gun blogging community actually took great pride in getting under the skin of Ladd. A post I did about Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) using the tragic death of her husband for political gain got me labeled a “gun extremist”. That was when I knew my blog had arrived and was gaining traction.

My friend Kurt Hofmann, who at the time was the Saint Louis Gun Rights Examiner, had patches printed up. If I remember correctly, Kurt was a definite target for Ladd and CSGV. I had to do some digging this morning but I found some of the patches and stickers that they each had made up. I probably have more around if I dig deeper.

Kurt now writes the Enemy at the Gate column for S.W.A.T. Magazine. It has been a few years since I’ve seen Kurt in person but we had some damn good discussions over a beer at his local watering hole.

Tomorrow marks the 10th anniversary of this blog. I don’t know how many years that is in blog years but it is a lot. I know many have said the day of the blog is over with but I am a contrarian and just can’t accept that. Many of the gun bloggers have gone on to other things but there are still some of us plugging away at it. People like Sebastian, SayUncle, Tam, Old NFO, Weerd Beard, and T-Bolt were blogging before me and are still blogging. We as a community are better for it.

Ladd was correct about one thing. We are the unorganized militia. We just aren’t the “private white militia of a fascist dictator”.

Very Sad News

I learned yesterday that Kristie, the wife of well-known gun blogger SayUncle, passed away quite unexpectedly. Despite not showing any symptom of heart issues, she went into cardiac arrest on Friday, was later declared brain dead, and per her wishes was taken off of life support on Sunday.

From SayUncle:

On March 20th, my beloved wife and mother of my children, unexpectedly went into cardiac arrest. She had never presented any symptoms prior to then.

On March 21st, her doctor informed me that her brain was no longer functioning and there was no chance of recovery.

On March 22nd, in accordance with her wishes outlined in her living will, I authorized the medical staff to remove life support. She passed away peacefully at 8:48am central time while I held her hand. She will be missed.

March 23rd would have been our 18th anniversary.

In addition to Chance, she leaves a daughter and a son who are both in their teens.

Please pray for SayUncle and his family during this incredibly sad time. All I can say is that it is a tragedy when someone that age passes away so suddenly from natural causes. You just can’t prepare for it.

NRA AM 2018 Begins

My first impressions of the NRA Annual Meeting is that there are a lot of people here. Moreover, there are more press and media here than normal. I had to wait about 45 minutes to get my media credentials this morning. In all the years since 2011 when I first got media credentials, I’ve never, ever had to wait to pick up my credentials.

I was in line with gun bloggers, a reporter from HuffPo, and lots of local media outlets. I don’t know whether it is because of President Trump being here or because of the potential for demonstrators post-Parkland but they are here.

Learning Patience

This week is teaching me patience.

We had intended this week to be one of having fun with family out in St. Louis. While we have had a small graduation party for my nephew Grant and introduced Olivia Grace to another wing of her family, most of the week has been spent at Missouri Baptist Medical Center.

My mother-in-law fell on Saturday while getting out of bed at her memory-care center. She got a nasty bruise on the chin and she had trouble putting weight on her leg. This was the second fall in as many weeks. A mobile X-Ray was inconclusive so her doctor suggested a short in-patient stay to allow her to get an MRI and CT Scan. So she was transferred to the hospital on Monday afternoon. The doc said that my mother in law would probably get the MRI quickly and the doc could evaluate the results shortly after that.

It took over 24 hours to get that MRI done. The results were that she had two fractures in her pelvis and would need rehab.

Her nurses, patient techs, and rehab people have been great at MoBap.

Her case managers, or whatever they call them here, not so much. To be honest, and I’m biting my tongue so I don’t say anything worse, they need lessons in how to communicate. I have gotten to the point where I just have to bury my head in a book or the computer so I don’t lash out at them. The Complementary Spouse has been a great advocate for her Mom and as a nurse she can speak the language. She has been patient to the extreme and has finally gotten them working for her Mom.

Medicare rules must vary from state to state. My mother-in-law was admitted for observation. One would think that after a diagnosis of a fractured pelvis, a BP spike, AND going into afib, she would have been reclassified to in-patient status. According to the case managers this was not the case. She only got reclassified to in-patient status due to her chin bruise becoming infected and that was only yesterday. The case managers and utilization review say that can’t go back and reclassify her. Color me skeptical on that claim.

The reason that status matters is because under Medicare guidelines a person needs three days in the hospital as an in-patient (three midnight rule) in order to have Medicare to pay for rehab at a skilled nursing facility (nursing home). Fortunately, in our case, my mother-in-law will be admitted to an acute rehab facility where the three midnight rule isn’t needed. Hopefully, it will happen this afternoon.

To top things off, the hospital somehow, somewhere have lost my mother-in-law’s eyeglasses. What next?

The week has had some bright spots. I got to meet Charlie Foxtrot who has been helping us on The Polite Society Podcast. We had a great lunch on Wednesday and a great time meeting one another. The other bright spot is that I’ve found some really good bourbon that I can’t get at home as well as a great place to buy it. Imagine a liquor store in a former Best Buy location with many select barrel offerings and you have Lukas Wine and Spirits. I will be patient and wait until I get home before cracking the seal on the bourbon I purchased.

Keep your fingers crossed for my mother-in-law that she gets moved to her new location sooner than later. A prayer or two would be welcome as well.

UPDATE: My mother-in-law was moved to SSM St. Mary’s Rehab on Friday afternoon. I knew things were starting to look up when we were talking to the transfer EMTs. One was a North Carolinian and the other a South Carolinian. Moreover, the lead EMT was a graduate of Western Carolina University where I just so happen to teach a class each semester. Perfect!

The difference between the two facilities was like night and day. The room was bigger, the staff was more devoted to the patient than to the computer, and everyone was just a quantum leap more friendlier. I think this is going to work out just fine.

She’ll be in acute rehab for at least 2 weeks so long as she shows improvement. Our goal is to get her on her feet again and walking. She was walking without any assistance prior to the fall.

Keep your fingers crossed and prayer wouldn’t hurt.

GRNC Reports HB 562 May Be Weakened On The Floor (UPDATE)

As I reported earlier, HB 562 is scheduled to be debated on the floor of the NC House of Representatives this evening. Grass Roots North Carolina sent out an alert late yesterday saying that Rep. Allen McNeill (R-Randolph) intends to offer a floor amendment that would remove the phased-in elimination of pistol purchase permits from the bill. As I read their alert, Rep. McNeill was one of the people responsible for the phase-in of the elimination as opposed to an outright elimination of it.

They are requesting people email and call the House Republicans to remind them just which group helped them get their super-majority. If the Republicans who are supposed to be our friends are so willing to sell us down the river, how could we do any worse with Democrats? At least then, instead of being stabbed in the back, it would be a face to face fight where you knew what was coming at you.

Paul Iadonisi at Arms are the Mark of a Freeman has been doing some research into prosecutions for selling a pistol in a private sale without a pistol purchase permit. He has not been able to find a single prosecution for selling a pistol without the permit.

But what was interesting is that, through a few phone calls to DAs and court clerks, it’s been discovered that selling a pistol in a private sale without a PPP (or a Concealed Handgun Permit, which suffices according to statute as well) isn’t something that is ever used in any prosecution. I.e.: it is never enforced and is likely ignored by most private sellers and buyers.

Technically, the seller is not even required to take possession of the PPP or ask to see the CHP. And even if you do, you can put it in the circular file or shred it and not be in violation of the law. And the way the law is written, even an FFL dealer is not required to take possession of the PPP, though you’d be hard pressed to find one that wouldn’t. Both the CHP and PPP are good for five years. And therein lies the problem for our sheriffs: they can issue a PPP and a year later, the recipient could commit a crime that makes him ‘prohibited person’. Yet he can go buy a gun without a background check *at an FFL*, because the NICS check was already done. There is a mechanism for the CHP to be revoked, but not the PPP.

One of the arguments that I heard from a gun owner was that he wanted to know the person to whom he was selling a handgun was not a criminal or someone who would misuse it. I think it is called commonsense. If you don’t know the person and you don’t have a good feeling about that person, then don’t sell it to them. It’s that simple.

UPDATE: Rep. Jacqueline Schaffer (R-Mecklenburg), the principal sponsor of HB 562, made a motion at approximately 7:20pm to have the bill removed back to the Rules Committee. She said there were still a lot of amendments and too many pieces still in motion.

Clowns To The Left Of Me, Jokers To The Right



The rest of that song by Stealers Wheel goes “here I am stuck in the middle with you.”

That is how I’m feeling about the whole open carry fiasco in Texas. I doubt that there are many readers of this blog that don’t support the extension of open carry in Texas to include handguns. Many states including my own North Carolina have unlicensed open carry.

What is incredibly frustrating is watching Shannon Watts and her fellow gun prohibitionists at Everytown Moms for Illegal Mayors making hay out of the bumbling ineptitude of groups like Open Carry Texas. Sonic, Chipotle, and god knows who’s next have issued “Starbucks-style” statement asking the open carry activists to leave them out of the argument.

Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned has done yeoman’s work in examining the folly of their actions. You can read some of those posts here, here, and here. There are more.

The attention whoring of these OC activists has caused such backlash that the NRA issued a statement last Thursday which said, in part,

Yet while unlicensed open carry of long guns is also typically legal in most places, it is a rare sight to see someone sidle up next to you in line for lunch with a 7.62 rifle slung across his chest, much less a whole gaggle of folks descending on the same public venue with similar arms.

Let’s not mince words, not only is it rare, it’s downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself. To those who are not acquainted with the dubious practice of using public displays of firearms as a means to draw attention to oneself or one’s cause, it can be downright scary. It makes folks who might normally be perfectly open-minded about firearms feel uncomfortable and question the motives of pro-gun advocates.

As a result of these hijinx, two popular fast food outlets have recently requested patrons to keep guns off the premises (more information can be found here and here). In other words, the freedom and goodwill these businesses had previously extended to gun owners has been curtailed because of the actions of an attention-hungry few who thought only of themselves and not of those who might be affected by their behavior. To state the obvious, that’s counterproductive for the gun owning community.

More to the point, it’s just not neighborly, which is out of character for the big-hearted residents of Texas. Using guns merely to draw attention to yourself in public not only defies common sense, it shows a lack of consideration and manners. That’s not the Texas way. And that’s certainly not the NRA way.

Chris Cox of the NRA-ILA backed away from that statement yesterday saying it was the personal opinion of some unnamed staffer and not the NRA’s official position. He apologized for any confusion it caused. Others such as Charles Cooke of National Review disagreed saying that it was what needed to be said. I think I and the majority of the gun blogging and gun podcast community would agree that it needed to said.

Bob Owens had an interesting observation on this at BearingArms.com. He noted that often in cases like this where a statement is retracted that it is the original statement which reflects the internal thinking of the organization. In other words, it was what we called back in my political science days “signalling“.


As Michael Bane emphasized today in his Downrange Radio podcast, our goal in the gun rights community needs to be winning. We no more win hearts and minds with these open carry demonstrations in restaurants than the US Air Force did with carpet bombing in South Vietnam. I would send a copy of Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People to everyone in the Texas open carry leadership if I could.

I can’t, so in the meantime I will implore them to cut out the narcissistic displays, clean up their websites and Facebook pages, and, as Michael suggested, think before you do stupid. Those of us stuck in the middle would appreciate it.

A Couple Of Blog Meets Of Note

A few days ago Kevin of Misfires and Lightstrikes wrote me about a blogger meet-up at the 2013 SHOT Show. One of these days, I’ll get there again but not this coming year. Here are the details as sent by Kevin who asked that I post this:


As another SHOT Show approaches, (is it REALLY only 60 days away?!!), it’s time for another SHOT Show gunblogger meetup!

As the evenings during SHOT are dedicated to awards dinners and the like, this year, we’ll be meeting on Thursday, January 17th at 11:30 am for lunch at the Grand Café Lux restaurant in the Venetian Hotel and Casino.

If you can’t make it, I’d appreciate a post letting people know that it’s not just for bloggers; Vloggers, podcasters and blog visitors are all invited, too.

Please RSVP via email  (Kevin AT Exurbanleague.com) or join the event on Facebook.

Sean Sorrentino of An NC Gun Blog and Borepatch are trying to set up blogger shoot in the Raleigh-Durham area of central North Carolina either before or after Christmas.

From Borepatch:

Who’s up for a Christmas blogshoot in the Carolinas?


Some of us have been emailing for a bit, and so let me toss out a
question to the gunblogging community: who would be willing to get
together for a meet ‘n shoot sometime around the Christmas holiday?

I know that there are a bunch of folks in the Washington DC area, and
there are a surprising number of us here in Atlanta.  It seems like
Charlotte/Raleigh/Durham NC is about splitting the driving distance.

Please leave a comment if you’re interested, along with preferred date
and location.  Also, if anyone knows a range in any of those areas that
could accommodate a decent size group, please leave that info as well.

Since All The Cool Kids Are Doing It..

Since all the cool kids are posting either their Top 20 from their iPod or a screen cap of their desktop, I thought I’d play as well. I tend to use my iPod Classic for listening to podcasts more than anything else. When I checked my top played songs, the list was dominated by Christmas music! Blue Oyster Cult’s Don’t Fear the Reaper was number one so it wasn’t all bad.

I think I’ll just go with the screen cap instead. My wallpaper is from the FX show Justified. As you can tell, I’m a fan of the show.

GRPC 2012 – Who’s Going?

The 2012 Gun Rights Policy Conference kicks off this coming Friday evening in Orlando.

I am trying organize a little get-together for gun bloggers and podcasters. It will probably be Saturday evening after the reception. I’ve contacted a few bloggers that I knew were going to attend the conference but I’m sure I’ve missed others.

So, if you are going to GRPC 2012 and are a gun blogger or podcaster, either leave a comment or contact me at jpr9 AT earthlink DOT net. I’ll be back in touch with you with more details.