Interview With Paul Valone Of GRNC On Guns & Gadgets

Jared Yanis of the Guns & Gadgets YouTube channel interviewed Paul Valone of Grass Roots North Carolina at the recent SHOT Show.

Paul, who is president of GRNC, made the point that North Carolina is ground zero in the fight for gun rights. Everything you have seen in Virginia could happen here.

Lawsuits by Eric Holder and Democrats over redistricting. Check.

Money from Michael Bloomberg. Check.

Growth in sanctuary counties. A good thing but still check.

Paul made the point to me in Las Vegas that Virginia had to resort to the Second Amendment Sanctuary movement. They had lost their other options. We in North Carolina are not at that point. Yet.

Everyone who attends a county sanctuary meeting needs to be registered to vote. Even more importantly, they need to recruit 10 likeminded friends and make sure they are registered to vote. Then all 11 need to vote for pro-gun candidates in both the March primaries and November general election.

The other thing they need to do is join groups like Grass Roots North Carolina to give us the money and power needed to stand up the influx of money that Michael Bloomberg has already promised will be sent to North Carolina. That $250,000 is just the beginning.

To join GRNC – even if you don’t live in North Carolina – go here. We sure could use the help!

My GRPC Presentation

Another Gun Rights Policy Conference is done and in the books. This year’s conference attendance set a record with over 1,100 attendees. Over 100,000 watched it live on Facebook where it was livestreamed. GRPC set another record with 91 speakers. I was one of the 91 and spoke on the panel that covered using new media to advance gun rights.

Below is my presentation as delivered. In a few days, there will be video up on YouTube of this and the rest of the presentations.

Good Afternoon!

I’m John Richardson of the blog No Lawyers – Only Guns and Money. I’m also a co-host of the Polite Society Podcast.

I had a rude awakening a month and a half ago. I woke to find that Google’s Blogger had taken my blog down and was threatening to delete it. I could not even access it to backup my nine and a half years of work. My blood ran cold at the thought of losing all that work.

I was erroneously accused of violating the terms of service for selling or facilitating the sale of a regulated item. I was put in the same category as drug dealers and other purveyors of prohibited or regulated items.

I immediately appealed and I got tremendous support from the gun rights community. Dave Workman wrote an article for Liberty Park Press. Tom Knighton covered it on Bearingarms.com. People aimed tweets at Google and Blogger. There were posts about it on Facebook. Two days later, I got a email from Blogger saying, in essence, “Ooops. We made a mistake. You didn’t violate anything. So sorry.”

I tell you this story not to gain your sympathy. I tell it to show how we are at the mercy of big tech oligopolies. There have been plenty of stories about gun rights supporters being suspended or banned from Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. You know, like SAF. We have seen the demonetization of firearms-oriented YouTube videos. Thanks to leaks, we know that through the use of algorithms and key word lists there is a conscious effort to suppress our voices in advocacy of the Second Amendment, self-defense, and gun rights.

I got complacent and we as a community have gotten complacent. The social media giants made it so easy to be involved in social media that we forgot something. That something was that if you don’t control the means of getting the message out, it can be turned off at a whim and you are suppressed.

I decided never again. I bought my own domain name and thanks to my friend Bill Chachkes of Firearms Chat Podcast, I was hooked up with a 2A friendly host – Patriot Hosting.

We need to do three things if we want to continue getting the message out. First, we need to control our hosting and not be dependent upon companies that will sell us out in a heartbeat. Second, we need to explore going back to older technology that is beyond the control of the tech oligarchs. By this I mean firearms forums and perhaps even old fashioned bulletin board systems. I should clarify that I’m not advocating going back to 2400 baud modems to dial long distance to a favorite gun board. Finally, seek out and use newer alternatives like MeWe, Full 30, and Declan McCullagh’s “Talki. Ng”.

The late Professor Brian Patrick who spoke at GRPC a number of times called how we communicate the anti-media. He spoke and wrote about this extensively. Professor Patrick credited horizontal interpretive communities and how they communicated for the passage of shall issue carry laws in Florida and elsewhere. In non-social science speak, this means gun rights supporters and potential allies talked to one another, planned their strategies, and organized through the use of newsletters, forums and bulletin board systems outside the notice of the mass media. The key phrase here is that they talked to one another. Moreover, they talked to one another as equals. It was not top-down like our opponents.

You may never want to be a blogger, a podcaster, a YouTuber, or any other type of content creator. Nonetheless, you can help out those of us who are by providing us with leads, tips, and other information. Some of my best blog posts have come due to this. We are all in this together, we are a community, and we all can help one another protect, preserve, and enhance our Second Amendment rights.

Satire Is Sometimes The Best Way To Get The Message Across

A group of ham actors on YouTube calling themselves “Gun Control Hunters”  have created an excellent satire about red flag laws. The video below is a parody but it gets the message across that red flag laws are dangerous, evil, and contemptuous of the Constitutional rights such as due process.

Share this video with your friends, family, and especially those on the fence about red flag laws aka extreme violence protection orders.

Comparison Of Old Style M16A1 To A Modern AR-15

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One of the YouTube channels I enjoy watching is from a guy who calls himself Garand Thumb. Despite his resemblance to Travis Haley, he is not his son. Mike Jones (his actual name) is, however, an active duty USAF SERE Specialist. His videos have a lot of equipment testing reviews.

One of his most recent videos examines an old school M16A1 versus a more modern AR-15 SBR with all the bells and whistles. As I’ve accumulated most of the parts to build my own retro M16A1 – though, of course, semi-auto – I was very interested in his impressions. He ran a variety of shooting drills with both rifles. With the exception of having to move around a barrier, they were very comparable. One thing he noted was how well balanced the M16A1 was in comparison to his SBR and to an actual M4 carbine.

Really, YouTube? Brownells Offends Your Sensitivities? (Updated – Restored)

Brownells is one of the most mainstream of companies in the firearms industry. Thus it is very surprising that their YouTube channel was terminated without warning or notice at around 2am this Saturday morning.

WTF?!

Here is what they posted on Facebook:

Brownells’ YouTube channel has been terminated without warning or notice.

If you’re opposed to the continued attack on our community’s First and Second Amendment rights, please contact
GOOGLE: 650-253-0000 OPTION 5 FOR YOUTUBE M – F

MESSAGE YOUTUBE AND GOOGLE:
https://twitter.com/YouTube
https://twitter.com/rkyncl?lang=en
https://www.facebook.com/youtube/

USE “SEND FEEDBACK” AT BOTTOM OF YOUR PAGE to message YT

Thank you! And as always, we appreciate your support.

Among the groups that Brownells has provided support include both Operation Blazing Sword and Black Guns Matter. Is YouTube that scared of gays and African-Americans exercising their god-given right to self-defense and their Second Amendment rights?

More on this from the Gun Collective:

We are in a culture war and the other side wants us dead. I mean that both figuratively and literally. Terminating Brownells YouTube channnel is another shot across the bow in this culture war. Take a few minutes and letting YouTube know your opinion of this.

UPDATE:


The Brownells YouTube channel has been restored. There is still no explanation why it was taken down.

Brownells issued this message on their Facebook page:

Brownells’ YouTube account has been restored!


We CANNOT thank you ALL enough for your shares, reposts, retweets and positive comments!


We are beyond proud to have the finest group of customers and supporters anywhere.


Thank you again! 🇺🇸👍

Ian Of Forgotten Weapons Responds To The New YouTube Policy

Ian McCollum of Forgotten Weapons posted a video on Full30 this afternoon. In it, he discusses the implications of the new YouTube policy regarding firearms and firearms-related videos. As he notes, YouTube is somewhat of a black hole and no clarification is forthcoming.

He addresses the publicity that he’s gotten for his InRange TV videos going up on PornHub. Ian has no intention of putting Forgotten Weapons videos up on PornHub but hinted he has other plans in the works. The PornHub gambit was to bring attention to YouTube’s change in policy and hopefully force them to reconsider it.

The Gun Collective Responds To YouTube

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The Gun Collective is a YouTube channel devoted to all things firearms including firearms law. Adam Kraut, whom I have endorsed for the NRA Board of Directors, is part of The Gun Collective. I ran into these guys at Industry Day at the Range while at the SHOT Show. They were creating video content for their YouTube channel.

As you might expect, they will be massively impacted by the new YouTube policy singling out firearms for special rules. In response, they made this video which has been viewed over 255,000 times on Facebook and over 58,000 times on YouTube. Their YouTube channel has over 125,000 subscribers.

One thing I’ve started doing is reporting pro-gun control videos as offensive. For example, Everytown had a video pushing North Carolina’s pistol purchase permit system. I reported it as supporting Jim Crow laws conceived by white surpremacist Democrats which is totally correct. You might find other videos from Brady, Giffords, the Demanding Mommies, or Everytown which you find incorrect or offensive. Report them. It may seem trite but it is time we went on the offensive and started calling them on their lies. Their goal is nothing less than the destruction of the gun culture and I’m not going to stand by and do nothing.

NSSF Comment On New YouTube Policy

The National Shooting Sports Foundation has weighed in on YouTube’s new policy regarding firearms-related videos. NSSF also notes that they themselves have over 500 videos uploaded to YouTube.

The NSSF statement:

YOUTUBE’S NEW POLICY PROVIDES CAUSE FOR CONCERN

YouTube’s announcement this week of a new firearms content policy is troubling. We suspect it will be interpreted to block much more content than the stated goal of firearms and certain accessory sales. Especially worrisome is the potential for blocking educational content that serves an instructional and skill-building purpose. YouTube’s policy announcement has also served to invite political activists to flood their review staff with complaints about any video to which they may proffer manufactured outrage.

Much like Facebook, YouTube now acts as a virtual public square. The exercise of what amounts to censorship, then, can legitimately be viewed as the stifling of commercial free speech, which has constitutional protection. Such actions also impinge on the Second Amendment.

Facebook Precedent

In what we see as a parallel situation, Facebook has repeatedly shut down the pages of legitimate and reputable firearms retailers that were following Facebook’s own rules. The interpretation depended on the reviewers, the vast majority of whom have little familiarity with our business practices, let alone our products, and many of whom do not even do their work from American soil.

Both First and Second Amendment rights are essential to the liberty we enjoy as American citizens. In a very real sense, the de facto curtailment of First Amendment right of its firearm related business users, YouTube is edging toward simultaneously infringing upon the Second Amendment rights of the customers of these affected businesses.

Commerce in Firearms is Essential

As Circuit Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain wrote in his 36-page opinion, “Our forefathers recognized that the prohibition of commerce in firearms worked to undermine the right to keep and bear arms.”

This argument can be logically extended to social media platforms. It is time that social media platform management realizes its broader collective responsibility since it commands so much of today’s virtual public square. Suppressing the expression of First Amendment protected political speech and of commercial speech is wrong, even if they think they are acting in the public interest. The resulting impingement of lawful commerce in firearms that brings with it the infringement of Second Amendment rights is equally wrong and it should stop.

YouTube’s New Policy Is Aimed At The Gun Culture

A day or so ago YouTube changed their policies regarding firearms. This is in addition to earlier changes to policy that banned the showing of bump fire stocks as well as the demonetization of many firearms-related YouTube channels.

Here is the new official policy:

Policies on content featuring firearms


YouTube prohibits certain kinds of content featuring firearms. Specifically, we don’t allow content that:

  • Intends to sell firearms or certain firearms accessories through direct sales (e.g., private sales by individuals) or links to sites that sell these items. These accessories include but may not be limited to accessories that enable a firearm to simulate automatic fire or convert a firearm to automatic fire (e.g., bump stocks, gatling triggers, drop-in auto sears, conversion kits), and high capacity magazines (i.e., magazines or belts carrying more than 30 rounds).
  • Provides instructions on manufacturing a firearm, ammunition, high capacity magazine, homemade silencers/suppressors, or certain firearms accessories such as those listed above. This also includes instructions on how to convert a firearm to automatic or simulated automatic firing capabilities.
  • Shows users how to install the above-mentioned accessories or modifications.

Report content that violates this policy
You can report videos that you believe violate this policy by flagging the video.

Instructions on manufacturing ammunition? That is called reloading and has been a part of the shooting sports since time immemorial.

Instruction on manufacturing homemade silencers/suppressors? Those would be legally called Form 1 suppressors or silencers and are perfectly legal provided the $200 tax is paid along with the requisite background check. I currently have two Form 1’s approved and am deciding on how I want to proceed.

Insofar as reporting inappropriate videos, the gun prohibitionists have been trying to sabotage some of the more successful firearms-related YouTube channels. It has happened to Hickok45 and to others.

YouTube is a subsidiary of Google. Both are private companies entitled to set their own policies and discriminate against the gun culture if they so wish. This is not a constitutional issue as the First Amendment concerns only governmental abridgement of free speech. In the days of bulletin board systems (BBS) and private forums, this was not a real major issue. However, as social media has been increasingly aggregated into a few major corporate players – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google – their censorship is a problem. Unfortunately, there are not currently many viable alternatives. Full30 is great but it is limited. MeWe hasn’t really taken off as a Facebook alternative. The list goes on.

I suggest downloading those YouTube instructional videos that you like. There are plenty of ways to do it and I’m sure you can find them on the Internet. Content creators would be advised to back up their channels.

Probably the best comment on backing up a channel was this by Othais of C&R Arsenal.

Or you can go full bore like Ian and Karl.

UPDATE: Bloomberg Technology is covering this and included this comment from InRange TV aka Ian and Karl.

InRange TV, another channel devoted to firearms, wrote on its Facebook page that it would begin uploading videos to PornHub, an adult content website.

“YouTube’s newly released released vague and one-sided firearms policy makes it abundantly clear that YouTube cannot be counted upon to be a safe harbor for a wide variety of views and subject matter,” InRange TV wrote. “PornHub has a history of being a proactive voice in the online community, as well as operating a resilient and robust video streaming platform.”

If anyone knows about streaming video it is the porn industry!

He Had Me At Mil-Spec Butter Knife

This is something to share with all your gun-hating friends who know nothing about firearms. Tell them they need to share far and wide to show the world just how easy it is to make any firearm full auto. In this case, the guy shows how to make a Sig run at 2,000 rounds a minute and an AR run at 70,000 rounds a minute.

Of course this is a satirical video but do Shannon Watts and her coterie of “I support the Second Amendment but…” friends know this? Probably not which makes it even more imperative that we encourage them to share it. As that great Southern philosopher Forrest Gump once said, “Stupid is as stupid does.”