When You Have No Grass Roots, This Is How You See It

When your organization has no real grass roots, you tend to see all real grass roots activities as being directed from above. That’s how you do it so you assume that is how the opposition does it.

This is how Brady United (aka the Brady Campaign) is choosing to portray the Second Amendment Sanctuary movement.

Disturbing so-called “Second Amendment sanctuaries” are a coordinated effort supported by politically motivated, national groups. Since 2018, more than 270 counties have passed resolutions declaring themselves as “Second Amendment sanctuaries,” and this number continues to rise. 

Christian Heyne, the Brady VP for Policy, said, ” We are not talking about a grassroots movement. We are talking about a dangerous push from the gun lobby to remain relevant.”

This, of course, is pure, unadulterated bullshit.

What you are seeing in Virginia as in North Carolina is not being directed from Fairfax. If anything, the NRA is late to the game here.

What you are seeing is an organic effort by state and local groups to assert their God-given, Constitutionally-protected rights. This would include state-level groups like the Virginia Citizens Defense League and the Illinois State Rifle Association.

From VCDL in Prince William County, VA

You see Facebook groups springing up like with Rowan County pushing the movement. You see local citizens like in Kenton County, Kentucky recognizing that what is happening in the Virginia General Assembly could happen to them and taking action.

Unlike Brady United who is telling people how to fight Second Amendment Sanctuaries using FOIA requests, no one told my friend and fellow blogger Dave Cole to speak up in Kentucky. And no one has told the thousands and thousands of people who have shown up across Virgina to show up. They were asked and they responded.

Virginians! Avoid These Enemies Of Your Rights

Virginia’s state motto is Sic Semper Tyrannis. Translated into English it means “Thus always to tyrannts”. I say those who would abridge your God-given right to self-defense as enshrined in the Second Amendment are indeed tyrannts.

Unlike John Wilkes Booth, I think there is a better way to deal with these petty tyrannts. Don’t vote for them.

But who are they you ask. Thanks to Brady United Against Gun Violence – formerly the Brady Campaign – we know at least 33 of them.

Washington, D.C., August 29 — Following its endorsements for Virginia’s General Assembly — which included Sen. Dick Saslaw for State Senate, and Dan Helmer and Sheila Bynum-Coleman for the House of Delegates — the gun violence prevention organization Brady is proud to announce its second set of endorsements in the Commonwealth. The organization has officially endorsed a diverse set of candidates that have made gun violence prevention a top-tier issue:


House of Delegates: Wendy Gooditis (House District 10), Sam Rasoul (House District 11), Chris Hurst (House District 12), Danica Roem (House District 13), Larry Barnett (House District 27), Joshua Cole (House District 28), Kathleen Murphy (House District 34), Eileen Filler-Corn (House District 41), Kathy Tran (House District 42), Alfonso Lopez (House District 49), Hala Ayala (House District 51), Marcus Simon (House District 53), Jeff Bourne (House District 71), Schuyler VanValkenburg (House District 72), Shelly Simonds (House District 94), and Phil Hernandez (House District 100)


State Senate: Mamie Locke (Senate District 2), Herb Jones (Senate District 3), Cheryl Turpin (Senate District 7), Missy Cotter Smasal (Senate District 8), Ghazala Hashmi (Senate District 10), Amanda Pohl (Senate District 11), Debra Rodman (Senate District 12), John Bell (Senate District 13), John Edwards (Senate District 21), Creigh Deeds (Senate District 25), Adam Ebbin (Senate District 30), Janet Howell (Senate District 32), Jennifer Boysko (Senate District 33), and Dave Marsden (Senate District 37)

Working on the enemy of my enemy is my friend doctrine, I have to assume that the opponents to these 33 are at least marginally better. I notice at least one of these candidates – Creigh Deeds – was at one time endorsed by the NRA.

These candidates are expected by Brady to support red flag laws, magazine bans, and a state “assault weapons ban” (sic). I’m sure both Brady and Gov. Ralph Northam (D-VA) have more on the drawing board.

Look to state-level gun rights organizations for evaluations of their opponents. These include the Virginia Citizens Defense League and the Virginia Shooting Sports Association. VCDL has a page with candidate evaluations from the 2019 primary. I think contributions made to state-level organizations like these go much further than to national organization. Both have ways to contribute online. I can’t speak for VSSA but I do know that VCDL does have their own PAC which endorses and supports candidates.

The bottom line here is to prevent Virginia from becoming another Maryland or worse for Constitutionally-enumerated rights. Moreover, as a North Carolinian, I don’t want the state next door to become a gun control haven. Stuff like that has a way of migrating.

BOHICA

I posted the gun control industry’s wish list earlier this morning. If you don’t think they have a serious chance of getting much of it through the House, you are living in a dreamland. Read Nancy Pelosi’s statement from Friday marking the sixth anniversary of the murders in Newtown, Connecticut.

“For six years, Americans across the country have taken time to remember the 26 beautiful souls that were murdered in an act of unfathomable horror and heartbreak at Sandy Hook Elementary School. While the pain and grief of that tragic day remain, our determination to end the daily horror of gun violence continues to strengthen.


“Since that unspeakable tragedy, too many families in too many places have been impacted by the deadly epidemic of gun violence. In shattered communities across the country, the nation has had to console family members, comfort survivors and honor victims. Yet, at every opportunity Republicans refuse to lift a finger to stop the bloodshed. Enough is enough.


“Countless families, survivors and young people around the country have courageously turned their grief into action. Inspired by their strength and tireless advocacy, the new Democratic Majority will act boldly and decisively to ensure that no other family must endure the pain caused by gun violence.”

 The gun control lobby was supportive of Pelosi becoming Speaker and they are expecting their payoff. I have no doubt that she will attempt to come through. As Politico reports, she even has some Republican allies on gun control like Rep. Peter King (R-NY). Moreover, the House Judiciary Committee will be headed by known gun control advocate Jerold Nadler (D-NY) and there will be a House Gun Violence Task Force headed by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA).

What does all of this mean?

It means that we need to be on Defcon 1 for any and all gun control bills being introduced in January 2019 and those of us who have Republican senators need to be talking to them now. Take Giffords’ wish list, make comments on it, and email or fax it to those senators. Explain that red flag laws aka “Extreme Violence Protection Orders” not only violate the Constitution but get innocent people killed. Given how the GOP bows and scrapes to cops emphasize that some of those killed trying to enforce such a law will be cops. I think you can go through that list and come up with more reasons that none of them need be passed.

Shocking! A Semi-Honest Email From A Gun Control Group

I received an email yesterday from Peter Ambler who is the executive director of that cult of personality known as Giffords. His email said they inundated you with emails on a regular basis in the hopes you’d kick in a few bucks. I was shocked by this honest admission.

John –

We send a lot of emails. No doubt about it. You probably get as many messages from us as you do from members of your family. There’s a reason for that.

Can we explain?

The truth is, the overwhelming majority of the donations we receive come from lots and lots and lots of people giving small amounts of money. People of all backgrounds and in all communities chipping in 5, 10, 20 bucks because we all share one goal: changing our gun laws and saving lives.

And most of those donations? They come in response to emails like this one. So now you can see why they are so important… and why we have to ask:

Can you chip in $3 to Giffords PAC as part of our emergency 72-hour fundraising drive? It ends tomorrow at midnight. So this is important.

Gabby, Mark, and everyone at Giffords are extraordinarily proud of the way we raise our money here. Not just because it keeps us in the fight against the gun lobby, but because so many people stepping up to take ownership of our country’s future on this issue is how we create change.

All my best,

Peter Ambler
Executive Director, Giffords

I can’t say this email is completely honest because I know they’ve received many five and six figure donations. In their latest report with the Federal Elections Commission they reported large donations from people like Jon Shirley ($30,000), former president of Microsoft, and Marcy Carsey ($25,000), the Hollywood producer. Going back even further you find donations from Michael Bloomberg ($250,000) and Connie Ballmer ($250,000), wife of former Microsoft CEO and LA Clippers owner. I will give Ambler this that the trend is now towards unitemized donations aka small ones as opposed to large donations that the FEC requires to be identified as to the donor and amount.

Guns, Politics, And Freedom Radio

I was a guest yesterday on Episode 24 of the Guns, Freedom, and Politics radio show with Paul Valone. We discussed the failures of law enforcement at Marjory Stoneman Douglas H.S., President Trump’s gun control proposals, the media narrative of events, and what would have worked.

Paul suggested everyone call the White House comment line at 202-456-1111 to let him know where you stand on his proposals regarding bump fire stocks, raising the age to purchase a long arm, and universal background checks. The key thing regarding bump fire stocks is not the stocks themselves but rather if it is interpreted to include anything that might accelerate the rate of fire such as a trigger job, Geissele or Timney triggers, or a different buffer weight.

Paul has made the recording available as a YouTube video. You may want to subscribe to his page so you don’t miss future shows.

Headline Of The Day

No, this doesn’t directly relate to the shootings in Orlando but is just as timely. Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, referencing a link to the new gun control group founded by Mr. Gabby Giffords and General David Petraeus, wrote this:

MAN WHO COULDN’T CONTROL OWN PENIS WANTS TO CONTROL OTHERS’ GUNS

It referenced this article. Fortunately, I had already swallowed my coffee by the time I read that headline. If you’ve seen the movie Full Metal Jacket, you will remember the scene where the Gunny was marching his trainee platoon around the barracks chanting, “This is my rifle, this is my gun…”.

A Must Read

Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned has a blog post up analyzing the finances of the gun prohibitionists. The Form 990s have been posted and he has dug into them. They definitely had an influx of cash post-Newtown.

However, he ends with this:

Because in 2012, NRA’s revenues went from 219MM to 256MM, and in 2013 they went to $348MM. Get that? Between 2011 and 2013, NRA’s revenue increased by 129MM. That’smore than 3x the amount of every other gun control group’s revenue increase from 2011 to 2013 combined. And that’s just NRA proper. The NRA Foundation went from 29MM to 43MM from 2011 to 2012, then dropping slightly to 41MM in 2013, I suspect because people wanted to donate to the political arm since that’s where the threats were coming from.
The President’s and Bloomberg ginning up of gun control post-Sandy Hook has made NRA much stronger proportionally than the gun control movement. That’s because of people out there like you.

We are doing a lot better than the media would credit us with but we can still do better. This is a fight where we can’t slack off because our opponents and their media lapdogs certainly won’t.

Colion Noir on “Gun Safety”

Colion Noir, in his latest commentary for NRA News, takes on one of my pet peeves. That is, the renaming of gun control and confiscation as gun safety (sic) by the gun prohibitionists, the mainstream media, and the White House. If they want to talk about gun safety, they need to be talking about Colonel Cooper’s Four Rules.

Proposals for universal background checks, a new assault weapon (sic) ban, and magazine bans have nothing to do with actual gun safety. When the gun prohibitionists use the term “gun safety” they have the same intent as when they used the term “gun control”.

As Colion Noir says, thinking that all they have to do is change the name shows they have the same amount of respect for us that they do for the Second Amendment. In other words, none.

My Day Is Made!

I was so afraid that the ne’er do wells from the lesser gun prohibitionist groups would not show up in Houston to the NRA Annual Meeting. They are always amusing in their sad pathetic way.

My prayers have been answered and there is joy in Mudville.

From today’s Houston Chronicle:

Opponents gather

Outside the convention center, an array of gun-control advocates is expected to demonstrate opposition to the NRA and its lobbying prowess.

“I don’t think it’s a losing battle at all,” said Heather Ross, an organizer for the “Occupy the NRA” group that plans to lead the reading of names of 4,000 gun-violence victims under a #NoMoreNames banner at Discovery Green, across from the convention center. The list will start with the 26 victims of gunman Adam Lanza at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., last December.

Texas is not as uniformly pro-gun as most people believe, Ross insisted.

“The concept that we’re all a bunch of gun-toting crazies is inaccurate,” she said. “That’s largely pushed by people elected to office.”

Of course, they never would have you believe that lives are saved and rapes prevented through the use or even mere presence of a firearm.

Trouble In Paradise?

An observant reader sent me a link to a new job posting for the Brady Campaign. The posting which appeared on Saturday says that they are seeking a “Chief Campaigns Officer”. He wondered if they were dissatisfied with Dan Gross and cutting him loose after less than a year on the job.

The ad says they are seeking someone with 10 plus years of “senior-level experience” in ” politics, community organizing, political advocacy, nonprofit management, and/or communications.” They want the same amount of experience in staff management along with the usual strong interpersonal skills, organizational skills, etc. Of course, they want a commitment to the mission of the Brady Campaign.

From the position summary and responsibilities:

Position Summary



Senior level decision maker within the organization responsible for
overseeing the organization’s member and constituent engagement, policy
and public health and safety programs. This position works closely with
senior staff and consultants.




Responsibilities



Member/Constituent Engagement


  • Set and direct objectives for the director of legislation and mobilization to engage the American public.
  • Grow the membership of the organization and ensure high level of member activity in advocacy and fundraising activities.
  • Coordinate member engagement with the development department.





Policy Program

  • Set and direct objectives for the director of legislation and
    mobilization and the director of the legal action project related to
    passing and protecting policy.
  • Effectively represent the perspective of the American public in policy conversations at the federal level.
  • Provide resources to state level chapters regarding policy at the state level.


Public Health and Safety Education Program

  • Design and guide public education campaigns and the promotion of those campaigns federally and at the state level.
  • Effectively operate the legal action project.

I’ll be honest in that I can’t quite figure out if they are replacing Dan Gross or adding the equivalent of an ILA’s Chris Cox to the overall NRA’s Wayne LaPierre.

Some of the duties such as setting objectives and directing both the director of legislation and the director of the legal action project belong, in my opinion, to Dan Gross as president of the Brady Campaign. Or, it could be that flush with a reported $5 million in donations, they are seeking to expand their lobbying efforts.

Regardless of whether this is a Dan Gross replacement or an addition to their lobbying efforts, it still will not be enough to allow them to regain their place at the head of the gun prohibitionist table as it is increasingly obvious that Mayor Bloomberg and his Illegal Mayors have pushed them aside.