Congratulations To Charlie Cook

Charlie Cook was chosen as the 2019 Ray Carter Blogger of the Year by the Second Amendment Foundation. Charlie produces Riding Shotgun with Charlie and Charlie’s Gun Grams. Both of these can be found on YouTube.

The award is named in honor of the late Ray Carter. Ray, or Gay Cynic to use his nom de plume, worked for the Second Amendment Foundation as Director of Development. He loved blogging and blogged at Free Thinker. Ray died in 2016 after a long battle with cancer. The Minuteman had this tribute on his life.

Left to right: Rob Morse (2018), Slow Facts; John Richardson (2017), No Lawyers – Only Guns and Money; Charlie Cook; Paul Lathrop (2016) Polite Society Podcast.

Charlie may not be a blogger in the truest sense of the word but he was very deserving of this award. Despite having met Ray only once in person, I think he would approve. Charlie reaches millions with his Gun Grams and his Riding Shotgun with Charlie YouTube videos. Getting the pro-gun message out using New Media is what it is all about.

Links For Your Weekend Reading

I spent three days this week in the gun control paradise known as Chicago. So I’m doing a little catch-up on my reading and I’ve come across a few blog posts that I think are must reads.

Since the murders at Majory Stoneman Douglas HS in Parkland, Florida, we have subjected to a non-stop assault on our civil rights from the gun control industry and their media allies. As the late Professor Brian Anse Patrick showed in his research, the NRA and gun rights groups in general actually benefit from this assault. My friend and Polite Society Podcast co-host Rob Morse has a post up about how NRA and SAF memberships have been rising with this assault. If you want to go into more depth on this, I highly recommend Prof. Patrick’s The National Rifle Association and the Media: The Motivating Force of Negative Coverage. The Kindle edition is $9.99 or about half the cost of the paperback version.

Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned has two posts up that I would encourage you to read. The first, Dear NRA, says we and the NRA need to up our grassroots game. In particular, we need to convert those who believe in the Second Amendment from being passive observers to active participants. Our opponents have upped their game and are becoming much more effective. It will not be merely enough to watch a NRA-TV video with Dana Loesch or Colion Noir and nod your head in agreement. It will entail getting our rear ends out to city council meetings and hearings when they impact our gun rights.

In his second post, Sebastian has a lexicon of gun terms that the media has thrown out there to confuse non-gun owners. He addresses them and how we should in turn address them when a non-gun owner asks us questions. In one sense – and this is me saying it and not Sebastian – we need to listen to the immortal words of Crash Davis in Bull Durham, “You’re gonna have to learn your cliches. You’re gonna have to study them, you’re gonna have to learn them, you’re gonna have to know them. They’re your friends.” In other words, we need to know the gun prohibitionists’ argument better than they do. You should also read Tam’s post on Magical Thinking which also addresses this.

Kevin Creighton has a short post saying we need to get back into the game. He’s right. We need to get back into the cultural game because we are in a cultural war. Two things he suggests is reaching out to motorcycle riders as we have a shared interest in freedom and to videogamers to encourage them to get into competitive shooting.

Finally, Erin Palette looks at SB 7026 which was signed in Florida on Friday by Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL). She analyzes it in depth and the implications of many of the things in the bill are horrendous. Insofar as creating “school guardians”, it will be dependent upon a county’s sheriff to approve it there. Moreover, it will require 132 hours of training to become qualified as well as another 12 hours in a “certified nationally recognized diversity training program”. Diversity training for stopping an armed attacker? Who the f*&k came up with that nonsense.

So now you have your weekend reading in nice, digestible nuggets. My other suggestion is if there is a gun show in your area, go to it.  Spend some quality time with your cultural brothers and sisters. And, if you are in the Asheville area, go to the Asheville Gun Show at the WNC Ag Center. While there, stop at the Grass Roots North Carolina booth and say hello. I’ll be working it from 10am until 5pm.

“Armed Heroes in Teacher’s Clothing”

My good friend, fellow blogger, and fellow podcaster Rob Morse spent several days recently training with a group of Ohio teachers in the FASTER (Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response) program.

He begins his post:

They don’t look like heroes, but they are. I spent several days with a group of Ohio teachers who want to protect their students. Most teachers feel the same way, but these extraordinary individuals did something about it. They took a training course. They learned to stop an armed attack in their schools. They learned to treat the injured. Rather than shelter in place and wait for the police and EMTs to save them, these teachers became the good guy with a gun and bandages. The training program is a success. The volunteer organization that trains teachers doesn’t have enough money to train everyone who wants instruction. These men and women do it for love and they need our help.

Read his full report here.

“Choosing Between Guns And Words”

Rob at the SlowFacts Blog had this to say about the gun control laws being proposed by the Obama Administration and how it weakens the citizen vis–à–vis the government.

The Second Amendment isn’t about sport. The Second Amendment exists to keep politicians and law enforcement talking to us rather than demanding obedience at gunpoint. The Second Amendment discourages government officials from using guns when words would suffice. That really bothers some politicians and law enforcement officers.

When we disarm honest citizens, we are choosing between guns and words. We are choosing state sponsored violence over the frustration of peaceful political discussion. By disarming honest citizens, we are telling our government officials that they no longer need to listen to the people. That should frighten us all.

Read the whole post. It is a thoughtful post.

Slow Facts On HR 822

I met Rob Morse on the last day of the recent Gun Rights Policy Conference. It turns out he was a fellow gun blogger and had a blog named Slow Facts. We spent a few hours in Chicago O’Hare chatting while waiting for our respective flights home, me to North Carolina and Rob to Southern California.

Rob is an engineer by training and he applies that same clarity of thought to piercing the gun prohibitionists’ arguments against national reciprocity for concealed carry in this article.

Defenders of the existing feudal licensing scheme claim that their state has special needs. (Yes, there are a few “special needs” states in these United States. They have been taking the short bus for years now.) So what! Of course each state tests its drivers in slightly different ways to obtain a license. Some towns allow right turns at a red traffic light, and others don’t. We now post traffic signs so the regulations are explicit and not a matter of local knowledge. Gun laws also differ slightly from state to state, and most of the differences are similarly arbitrary.

It is as if California didn’t allow you to cross the border in your pickup truck because your truck is not on their list of approved vehicles. At the border they say, “In our state, we only let certain people drive that kind of truck. Now why would you be needing one?”

Don’t you recognize the same old political excuses?

  • “People will be dying all over the place if we let you drive a truck like that in our state.
  • “We have a long tradition of truck control, and it has served us well.
  • “Only criminals drive that kind of truck and we won’t stand for it here.
  • “Strangers simply don’t understand our system of truck regulation, and we need to keep foreign trucks out of their hands for their own protection.
  • “You wouldn’t want one of our children to get their hands on a truck like this, now would you?
  • “Our local government knows its citizens and determines the trucks that best serve their needs.”

Rob makes a very perceptive argument when he says that one of the major reasons some politicians oppose national reciprocity is that visitors will make the locals look bad by comparison. In other words, when the people of California or New York or New Jersey see visitors carrying concealed, legally and safely, they will begin to wonder why the heck they don’t have the same rights as the visitors.

Read the whole post as it does an excellent job is demolishing the arguments of Mayor Bloomberg and his Illegal Mayors with their Our Lives, Our Laws campaign.