Friday, March 16, 2018

Long Gun Protests Don't Do What You Think They Do

Long gun protests are counter-productive because they antagonize through an implied threat of violence, whether the threat is intended or imagined. In most cases, adding long guns to protests against gun control is nothing more than flamboyant punctuation of our indignation. The media’s fake moral outrage and the public angst over spree killings manifested against guns has rightly fired up most gun owners. With the NRA, GOP, and Trump turning their backs on us, it feels like no one is fighting for the one right that protects them all. The gains of the past two decades seem to be slipping away through our fingers.

​All of us are angry. Righteous indignation can produce a lot of good results, but blindly reacting to these protests in haste is only destructive to our side. Sometimes, it’s easy to feel as if a sufficient quantity of moral indignation will sway the arguments and undecided minds in our favor. It is satisfying to proclaim to the world that we will defend our right to bear arms with our lives, if necessary. We can show the misguided and deceptive that we feel as vehemently over our side of the debate as they do, but willing to make the final sacrifice for liberty’s greater good. But we’re preaching to the choir.
Implied by the long guns in our rallies is the very fact we will resist gun confiscation by force. Demonstrations of resolve work to wear down an opponent who is unwilling or unable to overcome the resistance the other poses. It’s usually non-violent and political in nature, something the anti-gunners are winning at. The mushy hearts and minds unable to fathom defending themselves against tyrant or teen killer are scared by angry men with guns.

Facing off with long guns against deluded and na├»ve gun control supporters is counter-productive because it subconsciously sends the message “We’ll kill you too.” These hoplophobes and hoplopaths take the implied threat personally. Media and the gun control apparatus exploits the imagery of AR-15s, Gadsden flags, and “come and take it” signs as support for their argument that gun owners are dangerous. The ignorant and ill-informed take away that impression because it is an overreaction to what is nothing more than the misguided expression of grief, fear, and a desire to end senseless violence.
We are seen as unreasonable; these children are protesting for their safety, and we’re showing up with rifles? We must remember the people in the middle aren’t aware of what’s behind these astroturf protests and walk-outs. They are unable to see the connection of exploitation of the tragedy to push “assault weapon” bans and more. By standing off across from the with rifles, we become the threat to them. Like it or not, the weapons that have been demonized are seen as not a guarantee of freedom, but tools threatening death to them.

From time to time, long gun carrying groups hold open carry protests outside of state legislatures or local government offices, usually in response to gun control measures. The implication in these protests is that the rifles the participants are shouldering could easily be turned against legislators. The message is: “If you try to take away our guns, we will resist you and kill you with these very guns.” It is a subtle and indirect threat that the ultimate power of the people, as our forefathers exercised and intended to preserve for us, is to resist and remove an abusive government.

For gun owners, long gun protests only work if the other side can be persuaded by what is essentially an implied threat of armed violence—usually the government. The sheep holding signs and wearing orange don’t see a message of resolve the same way a politician in the statehouse sees hundreds or thousands of armed citizens on the lawn. Legislators know they can be voted out or worse, should they ignore the will of the people. For moms, students, and snowflakes, long gun counter-protests don’t persuade, they polarize the same way someone asking to have a conversation about “common sense gun laws” polarizes us.

Both groups at these events are like a married couple yelling at each other over their relationship. The messages being sent to the other side are contradictory and totally ignore what the other side is trying to say. What goes ignored is the subconscious reasons both sides are there; anti-gunners expressing moral outrage over violence (directed towards guns) and gun owners expressing their opposition to more gun control. It’s an exercise in satisfying the need to act out loud and in public to express inner turmoil—sometimes it feels good to tell the other guy off. But neither group is listening to each other.

Two messages are being sent and neither is on the same wavelength. “Do something about all this violence,” often manifested as “more gun control, now!” because politicians and the media portray guns as the sole cause and solution of mass killings. Gun owners are saying “We resist you and your support/proposal for more gun control!” with the unstated insinuation being “…by violence, if necessary.”

I’m against the idea of any sort of counter-protest now. Why validate the other side (in their own minds) at all? By showing up to their usually underwhelming victim-disarmament celebrations, we send the message that they’re getting under our skin or that they must be doing something right if those gun nuts show up. We have to stop reacting to them and make them react to us. Gun owners have to get out of the feel-good mindset of counter-protesting and hitting the enemy in ways they don’t expect and can’t counter. For instance, where are the discounts on CCW classes or range time for teachers? We’ve got more than enough vets, servicemen, and cops on our side.

But it worked in Texas! Well it didn’t in California. In Texas, long gun open carry rallies, protests, and walks were generally done to show how idiosyncratic it was that Texas allowed long gun open carry but prohibited unconcealed holstered handguns. The rifles and shotguns had a direct connection to the message being sent; not a superfluous and colorful addition that convinces no one of anything they didn’t already believe.

For the public who was unaware of the debate and before media coverage of the phenomenon was widespread, the sight of men and women carrying, and slinging rifles was startling. Some were alarmed and alienated by behavior, as the intense pressure from groups like Moms Demand Action showed. Negative media coverage harmed open carry in Texas.

Open Carry Texas and similar groups did not win open carry for Texas; licensed open carry was passed in spite of the rifle-toters by the work of extremely dedicated lobbyists who convinced legislators that handgun open carry was not a threat to Texans. If the long gun open carry activists did anything to gain handgun open carry, it was creating a desire to end their silly antics.

Malevolent hoplopaths organizing anti-gun protests and their true believers are the enemy, but the drones duped into the crowd are not fully aware of the consequences of the proposed actions. Children, indoctrinated in public schools, and the poorly informed public are swayed by a biased media that salivates over the photo-op of a lifetime. They see a man with a rifle and see a threat that further alienates them from our side. Their minds will never be changed if gun owners play into the stereotypes that they are fed.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Breaking: 5,000ft Hunting Ban Proposal Origin

Are evil forces trying to drive target shooters deep into the Nevada desert, their two-wheel drive sedans and PreRunners to be stranded, putting money into the pockets of off-road towing companies? No. The Wildlife Commission proposal to ban hunting discharge of firearms within 5,000 feet of residences come from a multitude of complaints about bad hunting behavior and is driven primarily by game wardens’ complaints that they are effectively powerless to do anything about it.

Read the rest at the new blog on the website.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

One mile shooting ban? Take Action!

NDOW wants to ban hunting within 5,000 feet of a residence statewide. Is this a set-up for a target shooting ban?

The Wildlife Commission wants to ban discharge of a firearm within 5,000 feet of a residence while hunting. The NRA-ILA pointed out that this could affect many areas where the act of hunting is safe, but the point of fire is within an arbitrary zone, rather than shooting itself being hazardous. Hunters shooting in a safe direction shouldn’t be subjected to a bureaucrat’s whim.
But I don’t hunt, you might say. If you live in urban Washoe County, you know that you have to be 5,000 from anything to go target shooting. Like many things with guns, it’s not the obvious we have to worry about, but how the law can be abused. What if this is a set-up to creating a new state law governing target shooting?

If this regulation makes it into state law, it’s not unreasonable to expect an anti-gun legislature using this as a basis for a state law for target shooting. “We do it for hunting; why not do it for target shooting?” Assemblyman Ira Hansen said: "NDOW seems to think they are now the Legislature!" Many other legislators are shocked that the commission is going this far.

Nye County doesn’t have any arbitrary restriction. Many common areas in Clark County would be out-of-reach for all but those with 4x4s. Ranges are crowded and expensive as it is. If you’re from Las Vegas, Reno, or California, you know that shooting areas get pushed further and further out as time goes by until it’s a pain to go shooting. Shut down the bureaucrats!

Discharge of firearms needs to be left with local authorities who know their areas best and are more responsive to local residents. We cannot afford to give hoplopaths and anti-hunters an inch. Take action before March 16th!

Nevada Carry has a public records request in to NDOW to find out where this proposal came from.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

It's Beyond Time for Campus Carry

Arm all teachers? The idea sounds insane when your kid’s elementary school teacher can’t back out of her driveway without knocking over the garbage cans. No one is seriously suggesting that. What is being suggested is that we stop making it illegal for those teachers (and parents) to carry concealed at schools. We allow teachers to shoot back rather than die helplessly.

Nevada’s school gun ban was created because of armed students, generally gang members, not teachers. Teachers, staff, parents, and college students were never a problem. In fact, in 1989, school shootings were an unheard of as a phenomenon. Self-defense carry was at an all-time low among Americans. We don’t live in those times any more.

What we need to do is ultimately repeal the prohibition for adult college students, parents, teachers, and staff to carry handguns on campus. If schools and districts wish, they can require additional training beyond the concealed firearm permit course, such as regular qualification, for teachers and staff who will carry regularly. That way, only proficient shooters who are able and willing to engage the shooter without unnecessarily threatening students.

Contrary to the assumption of many, no one is seriously suggesting using teachers as a counter assault force.Armed teachers can
  • Barricade themselves in the classroom, then kill the shooter as he tries to come in the door.
  • “Pop out” of a classroom or hiding place and ambush the shooter as he comes around the corner or into the room.
  • Return fire if confronted by the shooter while evacuating.

Coach Aaron Feis, who was also a concealed carrier (off-campus of course), shielded two students with his body. He should have been allowed to carry and shoot back. We’ve heard the stories of brave, unarmed people saving lives by sacrificing theirs too many times. Allowing schools to remain gun-free zones is tantamount to sanctioning these murders. If there were an epidemic of school fires, would anyone seriously consider opposing fire safety reforms?

What can I do?

Teachers, if you have a good relationship with your principal and you know they may be receptive to such a thing, have a discussion about getting written permission from your principal to carry a concealed handgun on campus. You must have a permit, of course, but this will allow you to legally do so. The risk is that virtually no district will allow this and will immediately discipline, likely terminate, both of you. However, getting fired is better than death.

What the permission slip will do is prevent prosecution if you are found out or have to use the gun. One Nevada principal allergy gave permission to a staff member to carry on campus. The principal denied it, of course, calling the “note” a forgery. The news story seems to have gone down the memory hole, but a few of you can probably recall reading about it. No doubt—as several people have told me—principals across the state are already giving secret permission. God bless them and keep it up.

On a larger scale, continue to talk to your administrators and trustees about changing school policy to allow teachers, staff, and parents to be armed on campus. Policies can be simple enough to allow permittees to leave the gun in their locked vehicle; at least it’s something and would keep concealed carry parents from being prosecuted for driving through the parking lot.

Parents, I encourage you to talk to and write your principals and trustees. If you have a good relationship with principals, ask for permission to carry, even if only in your car in the parking lot. Help them understand the issue and help change their minds. Vote for campus carry friendly candidates.

College students, you can apply for campus carry now. Though permission is rarely granted, by applying you are at least helping to show that there is demand for it. When everyone is told “don’t bother, they never grant permission,” it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. We’ve created a helpful application packet to make the process easier (see the blog post as well). Be sure to talk to your campus presidents, administrators, and trustees. Don’t forget your fellow students—take a classmate shooting.

We have to do something to save lives and those things are not the same, tired gun control talking points that are about disarmament. It’s time to channel our energy into pressuring political changes and helping educating teachers, administrators, and the public on the reality about concealed carriers. 

Friday, February 23, 2018

Active Duty Military and Non-Resident CCWs

If you are active duty military, do you need a Nevada issued concealed firearm permit? Exactly when do you become a resident of Nevada for the purposes of needing concealed carry? The regulations, NRS 202.3653 to 202.369, don’t offer any guidance, so we have to look at other Nevada statutes and case law. The only easy answer to this one isn't what you may have hoped for.

Many wonder if they can carry on their “home” state permit while stationed in Nevada. Sometimes, they even have a Nevada driver’s license. Normally, new residents have 60 days to convert an out-of-state permit to a Nevada permit…by taking the class and applying from scratch.

This question often comes up when a serviceman or woman (or their spouses) wonder if they need to replace their out-of-state permit with a Nevada permit when they (or their spouse) is stationed here. First, temporary duty (TDY) wouldn’t count, but a permanent change of station (PCS) would. We’re not going to debate car registration, voting, and driver’s licenses, but rather, we’re going to look at what could get someone in trouble for carrying concealed.

Nevada offers one permit to both residents and non-residents, so don’t think there are two classes. Non-residents just get to apply to any sheriff in the state, which usually means Clark County.

Legal Residence 
NRS 10.155 states: “Unless otherwise provided by specific statute, the legal residence of a person with reference to ... any other right dependent on residence, is that place where the person has been physically present within the State or county, as the case may be, during all of the period for which residence is claimed by the person.”

In regards to drivers’ licenses NRS 482.103, living in Nevada and having a job (the military) in Nevada would seem to qualify one as a resident. 
“1.  ’Resident’ includes, but is not limited to, a person:
(a) Whose legal residence [see above] is in the State of Nevada.
(c) Who physically resides in this State and engages in a trade, profession, occupation or accepts gainful employment in this State.” 
So if you qualify for a driver’s license, then you probably qualify as resident under NRS 202.3657 and you need a Nevada concealed firearm permit.

Clear Counsel Law summarized the finding of Aldabe v. Aldabe:  
"the Court found that evidence of 'mailing address, voting registration, school attendance, medical care, business and financial affairs, auto and operators’ licenses, taxes, wills, and employment”' all in Nevada as well as a 'declared intention of Nevada residence and performed continuous daily activities in Nevada' supported a finding that a person was a Nevada resident. 
50 U.S. Code Chapter 50, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, doesn’t really help. A legal brief from Creech Air Force base does rely on the military domicile concept (basically tax/voting purposes). What is essentially says (regarding driver licenses) is that if you are claiming Nevada as your residence for tax benefits on your paycheck, then you are a Nevada resident.

This area is a quagmire. Even the Creech brief says “maybe” in answers. Like the Gun Free School Zones debacle, it’s a gray area. So what’s the brass tacks bottom line?

If you are in Nevada and own a house or have a driver’s license, get a Nevada permit. That's the easy answer. If you get are detained and found to be carrying concealed, chances are the officer may not understand half of this. You may have some explaining to do if the officer questions why you have a Nevada DL but an Idaho CCW. A cop might let you go because whatever you did wasn’t that bad and they’re giving you professional courtesy for being in the service. Or they might be a vet and inter-service rivalry rears its ugly head. But as always, officer and prosecutorial discretion is not a plan.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Angry About All the NRA/Trump/GOP Tough Talk?

Let’s talk about divisiveness. I’ve taken heat from some people who are upset that I am criticizing President Trump, the Republicans, and the NRA for their stance and behavior on gun control lately. Myself and quite a few other Americans are displeased by the NRA’s and the GOP’s willingness to entertain and put forth what amount to gun control proposals. I have even been to the point of crassness to express my extreme displeasure and hope that hyperbole gets some people’s attention.

I do not believe that the NRA is working in our best interest. I do not believe that President Trump or the Republicans understand the issue of gun rights. Combined with intense media pressure and tactics from the Left, the NRA and Trump will give in to anti-gun demands in order to appear “reasonable.” As a result, this behavior will lead to the tide shifting towards ever increasing gun control as the Left wins victories and the will to fight on the Right subsides.

If we were not in danger, we would see the NRA, Republicans, and Trump standing firm on gun rights. Concealed carry reciprocity would have passed and no one would be entertaining a pointless bump fire ban. American support for gun rights is at an all-time high. Republicans control Congress (narrowly). Yet despite all this, concessions are being made all with the NRA’s blessing. The cuts being made to liberty are shallow, but they will inevitably lead to infection.

I am tired of infringements without winning any benefits. “Negotiating” when what is nearest and dearest to your heart is being threatened is not “negotiating”; it’s begging. Insulting the sacred cows of the Party, the NRA, or the President insults the angry gun owners because it suggests that they might be wrong. No one wants to bet on the wrong horse or believe that they put their hope and faith in the wrong entities. It’s frightening to believe that those who claim to be watching out for you, aren’t.

If you are offended by my opinion of Trump, the NRA, or the Republicans, I accuse you of being ignorant of history and human nature. You are too thin-skinned and unwilling to think critically on this topic. You are comfortable deceiving yourself into thinking infringements and capitulation to the Left is somehow protecting you from worse. You do no understand the issue. You do not “get it.” I’m sorry for you. It hurts to see someone that you trusted betray you. I get it, but don’t go into cognitive disassociation because coming to terms with a frightening reality (and future) will cause you more pain.

Some times we have to throw off our cherished thing in order to move forward once it has failed us. The Founding Fathers really did not want to stop being Englishmen, but they had no choice. We cannot live in denial any longer. Living in denial and ignoring what can no longer be ignored will only cost us our last chance of turning around the ship of state. Our rights are being chipped away, one by one, with the NRA and our political leadership helping suggest those that “people don’t care about” to be sacrificed first.

Now, if you choose to disagree, please do so after careful and critical thought. Please explain to me, in detail and with evidence, why you think what is transpiring in Washington is political mastery. Tell me why we should give something up with nothing in return. Think logically and rationally, don’t blindly rush to the defense of some person or organization. So I’m happy if you’re offended; maybe it’ll get you to reflect on why.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

He Who Panics First, Panics Best

What we are facing in the Great Bump Stock is a war of attrition. In a war of attrition, each side is doing their best to wear down the other side because he who gives in last, wins. After repeated tragedies, Republicans, gun owners, and conservative thinkers are giving in. Unable to defend their beliefs to even themselves, they have become susceptible to the slow, grinding tactics of the “Do Something!” crowd calling for meaningless gun control.

Without having fully tried the pro-gun solutions (armed teachers, staff, and parents in schools) or properly treating the epidemic of mental illness, too many gun owners are starting to wonder if the hoplopaths (gun haters) are right. The tone has changed. Without any counter-balance explaining the pro-gun position, these supposedly “reasonable” folks succumb unconsciously to a form of peer pressure.

Yes, Trump’s bump fire memo is something to worry about. His vague statements have become fact. He has been worn down into “doing something.” He has given the ATF the cover it needs to ban bump fire. Leading by example, the President has shown the public that compromise is okay and by answering the question in the public’s mind as to whether or not the people of the gun should begin giving rights away.

Make no doubt about it, we are headed for a gun control disaster in the near future. Public opinion is shifting away from the staunch “come and take it” attitude under Obama. Today, it is bump fire stocks. Tomorrow, it will be something else. What is happening is that media and social pressure, combined with the NRA’s stance and Republican rhetoric, is signaling to the public that it is time to become more “reasonable” about guns.

Steadfast belief in a conflicting opinion creates psychological tension that only inner conviction can overcome. Without close-held beliefs or detailed knowledge about the contrarian position, the mental conflict between self and society is best resolved by changing one’s opinions. This quiets the inner voice that is asking “Why do you believe X when everyone else believes Y?”

Two other major issues of our time went from “unthinkable” to permissible. If everyone else says gay marriage or marijuana isn’t a big deal, then why should anyone else think differently? Uncritical thinkers and uncurious minds don’t seek out reasons to defend their beliefs because those beliefs are ultimately based on public opinion. They are going along with the flow. But as the public opinion shifts, an ideologically ungrounded person will be pulled and finally shift with the tide.

What we are witnessing is the slow wearing down of gun-receptive public into accepting gun control. Media and hoplopathic (antigun) forces are actively encouraging this via propaganda. Sadly, those who are less susceptible to television brainwashing are being victimized by their reflexive need to mentally “fit in.” Neutral parties can only hold out so long without being pulled one way or the other and the AR-haters are louder.

Unfortunately, Republicans are being worn down as well. A president who truly grasped the slippery slope of appearing “reasonable” on gun control would never have asked the DOJ to essentially propose a bump fire ban. Under congressional and media pressure, the President’s memo, with the NRA’s blessing, amounts to a green light to ban bump fire stocks with political cover.

Many stalwart Trump defenders are saying that this is just a stratagem to appear like he is taking action. It is just that, but with the added danger that he doesn’t care if bump fire stocks are actually banned. If bump fire stocks aren’t banned, we can call it “masterful, 3D political chess.” If they are banned, apologists will excuse it as being necessary to save the rest. Excuses will be made because bump fire isn’t something that most gun owners care about.

Uncritical thinkers, gun owners included, don’t want to admit that their great orange hope isn’t their savior, but just another politician willing to do what is politically expedient. Donald Trump is not a man of deeply-held convictions; rather, he is a negotiator willing to compromise because closing a deal defines success, even if it is ultimately a losing deal. Temporarily mollifying the “do something” crowd with a sacrificial win gives Trump the illusion of success.  

The sacrificial lambs could be offered up to the gaping maw of the starving gun control demon. That demon is always hungry and is always calling for more. As these horrible acts of violence continue, the calls will grow more intense. Compromises and acquiescence to anti-gun bills will snowball, making it easier and easier each time for unprincipled politicians to do what is popular, not what is right.

Fudds who will give up bump fire stocks to make the controversy go away are too ignorant and cowardly to stand on principal. They are perpetuating an “eat me last” philosophy that feeding the monster will make it less hungry; no—throwing meat to the monster only gives it a taste for blood. If the public abandons the gun, then the politicians don’t need to support it. And as compromise becomes the norm, it becomes easier and easier each time to mentally justify giving in to compromise so one does not feel uncomfortable as a contrarian outlier.

Gun owners are getting scared and giving in. In the face of persecution, they are abandoning the faith. Like the boastful St. Peter who said he would never denounce Christ, by dawn, these folks with “molon labe” stickers on their pickup truck will betray the Second Amendment three times. If a mere fun accessory is being thrown under the bus, what will gun owners do when persecution begins? Will they stand firm when the ATF is kicking down doors, or will they meekly hand over their guns and criticize those who resist by force as making hunters look bad?

Think I'm nuts about the tone changing? The calls for "common sense gun safety" is being replaced by "repeal the Second Amendment." The rabid hoplopaths are the ones calling to do away with the right to keep and bear arms, but just as every major gun-hater jumped on the Everytown "gun safety" bandwagon, repealing the Second Amendment will be more commonplace until it seems reasonable. 

The high tide of gun rights is beginning to go out. The wheat is being separated from the chaff. Over time, as tragedies continue and we focus on guns rather than a sick society and broken people, more and more restrictions will we face. Stock up now. He who panics first panics best.