"Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one's thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down. They know its power. Thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, founded in injustice and wrong, are sure to tremble, if men are allowed to reason. ~ Frederick Douglass
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Saturday, January 28, 2023
Money, Money, Money
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What Are the Limits of Your Obedience?
Maybe it's time to think about the limits of your obedience.
Monday, January 23, 2023
Please Carry Your Guns With You
Many years ago, in a restaurant called Black Bear Diner, there was a group of older gentlemen that would come in each day and drink coffee. Each of them was carrying a firearm in full view or what we commonly call, "open carry."
In those days, Idaho still required concealed carry permits issued by the local Sheriff.
Most of the men in Idaho, native born that is, know a lot about firearms. So, what the concealed weapon permit law actually accomplished was that law abiding and knowledgeable citizens were deterred from carrying guns. This left Idahoans at a severe disadvantage because criminals don't care about concealed carry permits. The law actually kept criminals armed while disarming good citizens.
So one day while having breakfast with a liberal gal at that particular restaurant, a bunch of those gun toting guys came in. My liberal friend asked me, "doesn't that bother you?"
I looked at her and said, "absolutely not. You are sitting in the safest restaurant in all of Boise."
As an epilogue to that story, Idaho finally rid itself of the concealed carry weapon permit a few years later. No longer were citizens required to get a note from their government mommy to protect themselves. Before we continue, can we agree on two things?
1. Beyond the armed services and law enforcement, only mentally ill people intentionally kill other people. 2. You should know how to properly handle a gun safely, how to clear jams, and shoot straight. Practice and learn tactical advantages.
We Have a Mental Health Problem in America, Recognizing That Will Save Lives
I don't ever want to shoot or kill anyone. But right now we have two enemies. We have a serious mental health crisis wherein depressed and mentally ill people fantasize about killing others. That's not to say, I am not sympathetic to mental illness. I am a former N.A.M.I. board member.
So that is our first potential enemy. Our second enemy is a government that ignores the actual illness and attempts to treat the symptoms. This is what some bad physicians do. They don't take the time to actually diagnose what is wrong with a patient, they just write a prescription for some drug that treats our symptoms.
We all know the difference between a good physician and a bad one. We get that. Why then is the public distracted from the real issue, mental illness, and focused on the idea that guns are bad? Because vilifying guns is easy and it gets podium pounding votes. Let's face it. Many people are stupid and buy into that rhetoric. Fixing mental illness is hard. Passing worthless gun legislation is always easy.
One last item that is not insignificant. Those same governments, state and federal, are the same governments who let these mentally ill assassins fall through the cracks. Give them early releases. Fail to provide mental health support and monthly checkups. Killers walk amongst us.
Poorly run government and the often untreated, mentally ill are the issue. But I can't solve that. Those are external issues, long ignored. But I do have dominion over my own life and the lives close to me. Unfortunately, I must practice civil disobedience to be a good citizen.
Guns Are Simply Tools, Like Tow Chains and Jumper Cables
In my car and truck, I carry all three items. The truth is, I don't want to have to use any of them. I have crawled under two vehicles and pulled them out of a snowbank and a muddy ditch. I have jump started a few cars with jumper cables.
Nobody calls me a tow chain nut. Or a jumper cable fanatic. But they do say, thank you, after I provide the tools to help them. I have never shot a human being in my life. I hope I never do. But if I have to, I can and I will. That's the promise I make to myself, my family, and anyone nearby. That is part of the cost of being a good citizen.
A Few Examples of Items That Changed My Mind About Carrying Guns
In the small town I used to police in, we had a very angry and large human being named Howard. Howard was plagued with mental illness. Howard always carried a giant ax which he would sling over his shoulder. He carried that thing everywhere. Into banks, stores, and as he walked down the street. He scared the hell out of people. But carrying a giant ax is not illegal. Nor could I take it from him. All I could do was be nice to Howard and hope he did not cleave someone's head with that thing. I invited Howard into my office every week. Howard and I became good friends. He was funny as all hell. But I didn't let my guard down. Emotions can turn on a dime and I knew that.
Originally, I never made a big point of carrying a gun off-duty. I can think of one time that a .223 ranch rifle on my front seat stopped an entire car full of drunken idiots from beating me with a tire iron...but beyond that...all I had ever used a gun for was the killing of deer and elk struck by cars.
In 2007, after I retired, I was in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana had released a man who had killed two people. Once as a juvenile, the second as a young adult in what he described as a drug deal gone bad which was probably nothing more than a drug rip off. He had done 10 years for that manslaughter. At any rate, I was forced to co-exist in a situation with this man for a while and during that time- I would catch him staring at me. He knew I was retired police. The guy gave me the creeps. I began to start carrying guns with me, concealed and in my car. I didn't even bother to check what the law was- because it didn't matter to me. I was going to protect myself and quite honestly, I could care less about the law beyond 2A.
From that point on, I began to carry guns. Usually concealed. I didn't want to attract attention.
By the way, New Orleans is a shooting gallery. I have never been to a scarier place.
I also carry guns in businesses that prohibit concealed carry. When I see a sign with a handgun and a slash through it- what the translation means to me is- "Hey if you want to come in here and kill a bunch of people, please go ahead. We have disarmed our customers."
The Hits Just Keep Coming
Over the weekend, a deranged man killed 10 people and wounded many more in California. When caught, this 72 year old shot himself. A few months ago, a guy in Las Vegas stabbed 8 women, killing 2 on the strip.
Could an armed bystander have intervened and stopped either of these two events? Yes.
Have armed individuals stopped attacks? Yes. There are many instances of this. One of them occurred just north of me in the Salt Lake area when an armed gunman was shot and killed in a mall.
There are exceptions. The barricaded sniper in Las Vegas who shot concert goers. That was a horrible, savage, well planned attack. Pure evil. I doubt any intervention, save a few potshots from the ground, would have accomplished anything except given away your position with muzzle flash. No SWAT team could have been assembled in time. I doubt anyone in the initial attack had any idea where the shots were coming from. That shooter lived 60 miles from me. I undoubtedly crossed paths with him in a casino which has a handgun sign with a slash through it which reads, "No Firearms."
I could go on and on. But I want to leave you with this. The Luby's shooting in Killeen, Texas. Oct. of 1991. There was a woman who testified in front of Congress that she had left her gun in her pickup truck that day because she did not have a permit to carry it. Subsequent to that, she watched the suspect kill both of her parents. This first link recaps that day. The second vid is her testimony. Schumer has hair- that's how old this is.
25 Years Later: Memories of Luby's shooting fade but don't die | Local News | kdhnews.com
Perhaps the most powerful, compelling, 5 minutes of video that I have ever seen. I watched today via You Tube- I had not seen it back in the 90's. It sent chills up my spine just watching it.
Please Carry Your Guns With You
It's been 31 years since the Luby's murders in Killeen, Texas. That should be enough time for anyone to realize this murderous rage in our culture is not getting better and it's not going away any time soon.
In a place not too far away, I carry my gun into one of those places that says no firearms. The employees know that I carry guns. They do not tell anyone. They are glad that I do.
I want responsible, trained, people to carry guns. I want caring people to remain in our society and culture. I want law abiding citizens to obey local laws if you can. Being well trained and responsible helps send the message that we aren't going to stand idly by and watch people get killed or be killed- begging for mercy that will not come. When bad guys start to worry about whether they will get killed, then we have a chance of slowing this down. A deterrent effect.
I have to accept the reality. The mentally ill are growing in number. Bad laws, designed to disarm law abiding people are growing in number. We cannot rid ourselves of the mentally ill or the misguided politicians that abuse our emotions and intelligence while banging the anti-gun drum looking for campaign or party donations.
We have to rely on something that has always worked. A decent, well informed, and polite society.
Please carry your guns.