Category Archives: National Politics

NBC takes note of our Gabby Giffords counterprotest

Via Arizona Rifleman (who’s posting again, so read him!) comes this wonderful story of how the gun grabbers are withering on the vine. The headline is fantastic.

Almost a year after Newtown, does anyone care about gun control anymore?

In the aftermath of the Newtown massacre, gun control was ground zero in American politics, captivating the public and politicos alike. It flared again late last month after a gunman killed 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard.

But now, as the first anniversary of Newtown approaches, the forces for gun control have little to celebrate, a lot to mourn and scant hope of change in the near term. On the front lines, activists say they are demoralized and adrift, the movement fraying at the roots as its leaders struggle to reignite a fading national moment for change.

“It’s not going well at all,” says Sally Christ, 56, a donor to Americans for Responsible Solutions, a major gun-control lobby launched this year by former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

I was happily reading Arizona Rifleman’s blog post on this when something jumped out and smacked me in the face like a wet fish.

That’s why, in late June and early July, Team Giffords—which includes Gabby, her husband Mark Kelly, her service dog Nelson, and a phalanx of operatives—toured seven states in seven days. Toting a suitcase of their own firearms, they preached “gun responsibilities,” and tried to engage hardline locals and gun rights politicians. At the same time, Mayors Against Illegal Guns ran a 100-day, 25-state summer bus tour, calling for an end to gun violence.

But the results of both tours were mixed at best. In state after state, major politicians ducked Giffords and Kelly, despite (or perhaps because of) ample advance notice of their arrival.  In Alaska, Mark Begich, one of four Democrats who voted against closing the gun show loophole, was said to be vacationing on an island without cell service when the tour arrived. In North Dakota, “friends in the NRA” forced a last minute venue change, according to a Team Giffords advance man, who himself declined to be named for fear of mixing with gun-grabbers from Washington. And when members of MAIG arrived in Fargo, the mayor told them that guns were not a problem.

The grassroots side of the campaign struggled as well. At a MAIG event in Columbus, Ohio, the Buckeye Firearms Association organized a counter rally that drew twice the crowd.  In Raleigh, N.C., when Giffords passed through, a gun blogger turned out two-dozen people shaking green signs that read: Guns Save Lives. But perhaps the most dramatic scenes were in Manchester and Dover, N.H., where protesters arrived “full battle rattle,” as one man noted on a Facebook page for the counter-protest, toting guns—including an AR-15—and forcing Giffords out a back exit after her speech.

I don’t know how to spell it, but you know that sound they use in cartoons when something screeches to a halt and crashes? That was what happened in my brain.

You see, I’m that “gun blogger” in Raleigh who “turned out two-dozen people shaking green signs that read: Guns Save Lives.” Of course, it wasn’t because all my blog readers turned up, it was because I was leading the Grass Roots North Carolina protest. It was GRNC who emailed all their members in Wake and Durham counties asking them to show up at an unknown (at the time) location with about 24 hours notice. We didn’t know where we were going to set up until 10 hours before the event where it was even going to be! Their secrecy was deliberate, because they didn’t want us to show up. Sadly (for them!) they failed. From my blog wrapup of that event…

Luckily, the media told us what was happening. We heard several variations, but the basics were that they would shoot sporting clays, have a round table discussion with gun owners, and meet with their supporters. The general consensus was that their round table discussion with gun owners would happen at “The Pit Authentic Barbecue” in downtown Raleigh at around 11AM. Paul Valone of Grass Roots North Carolina couldn’t make it, so he put me in charge and asked me to make it happen. With less than 10 hours notice, we wrangled a crowd of about 25-30 people.

(Read the whole thing for photos and even some news video coverage.)

And now, months later, NBC is citing us and one of a number of reasons that the Astroturf anti-gun movement is failing.

If you ever wonder, “What can I do to make a difference,” think about me and those 25-30 people standing on a sidewalk in July, sweating, and doing TV interviews. We made a difference. Just by showing up, we made a difference. We showed the world the difference between Astroturf anti-gun and grassroots gun rights. We taught them all a lesson that no matter how much money you have and no matter how nice the private jet you flit about the country on, we have the numbers, intensity, and votes to beat you.

I’ve asked the author for a correction, noting that the protest was a GRNC event More importantly, I’ve emailed all my fellow protestors to let them know that NBC is pointing to them as one of the reasons that Astroturf anti-gunners have failed. They won a great victory for us that day.

How North Carolina receives carpetbaggers Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly

EDITED TO ADD: One of the stated aims of the Giffords/Kelly tour was to visit states where vulnerable Senators voted for or against the Toomey/Manchin gun control bill. Senator Kay Hagan, (D-NC) voted for T/M and is one of the most vulnerable Senators in the 2014 election. I saw no evidence at all that Hagan made any attempt to meet with Giffords or Kelly during this visit. This matches what happened in North Dakota where Democrats distanced themselves from her politically as well as physically.

——————

North Carolina is shedding its reputation as The Massachusetts of Dixie when it comes to gun laws. We are poised to end a bunch of stupid prohibitions with House Bill 937. And if there’s one thing that North Carolinians can’t stand it’s outsiders coming here to tell us how to run our lives. Strange how a kid from California can move here and go all native, huh? All you Yankee Carpetbaggers, GO HOME!

Today was the last day of Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly’s whirlwind tour of the USA. Seven states in seven days.

Anyone know what this is?

Gabbys plane

That is a photo of the private jet Gabby and Mark flew around in. It’s a $25,000,000 Candair Challenger CL-600. It’s owned by Montfort Aviation, which is owned by the Montfort brothers. Charlie Montfort owns the Colorado Rockies baseball team. It must be nice to have such generous friends to fly you all across the USA to push for further infringements on our rights.

Dubbed the “Rights and Responsibilities Tour” (and hilariously hash tagged #RandRTour, yeah, that plane looks like Rest and Relaxation to me!) Giffords and Kelly seemed to be pushing the Spiderman theory of gun ownership. “With great power comes great responsibility.” The reality is that their organization, “Americans for Responsible Solutions” has four goals.

  1. Ban all private firearm transfers
  2. “Limit” all “high capacity” magazines. Limit appears to mean “ban.”
  3. “Limit” all “assault weapons” however they decide to define that. Limit appears to mean “ban” on this one as well.
  4. Stop “Gun Trafficking.” I guess they plan to make it illegaler. Double illegal? Triple illegal?

So however they spin themselves, they are just another garden variety gun grabber group. We met them on those terms.

It took a lot of doing to find out where the R&R Tour was going to show up. So much so that I actually went to the airport to meet the plane in hopes of getting info on their planned stops for today. The cops kicked me out.

Luckily, the media told us what was happening. We heard several variations, but the basics were that they would shoot sporting clays, have a round table discussion with gun owners, and meet with their supporters. The general consensus was that their round table discussion with gun owners would happen at “The Pit Authentic Barbecue” in downtown Raleigh at around 11AM. Paul Valone of Grass Roots North Carolina couldn’t make it, so he put me in charge and asked me to make it happen. With less than 10 hours notice, we wrangled a crowd of about 25-30 people. Here we are at the beginning when the media showed up

IMG_2208

Photo Credit: Eric S, Raleigh

Immediately the media descended. I gave 4 on camera interviews and one print interview. Our main message was, not surprisingly, “Why is Gabby Giffords trying so hard to avoid the group she claims to represent?” That message set the tone for a lot of the coverage.

WRAL, channel 5.

Giffords meets with gun control supporters in Raleigh

Former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords visited Raleigh Sunday as part of a nationwide “Rights and Responsibilities Tour” to highlight ways they believe tougher laws can reduce gun violence.

Pro-gun rights group Grass Roots North Carolina criticized the couple for sitting down only with members of their organization rather than reaching out to gun owners across the political spectrum.

The group, which last week offered 100 rounds of free ammo to the first person to track down where Giffords would be, also questioned why details of the visit were not released until Saturday morning.

“Why are they hiding from the gun owners they claim to represent?” the group said in a statement Friday.

Here’s the video. I don’t speak on camera, but I spent quite a bit of time explaining to the reporter how they billed this as a “Round table with gun owners,” but we gun owners were excluded. I guess he listened. Listen for the bomb he drops on them for excluding us. You can see me in the crowd scene rocking the purple shirt.

UPDATE: The WRAL video has been pulled from the WRAL website. We’re trying to get another copy.

Note also how many people they have in the “round table.” Fourteen. We had double that on the street outside.

Here’s how NBC17 spun it.

Giffords brings gun control tour to Raleigh

RALEIGH, N.C. – A gun rights group staged a protest Sunday at The Pit restaurant, where former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, met to support tighter gun control laws.

But the gathering was “by invitation only” which led members of Grass Roots North Carolina to ask why they were not invited.

“We’d like to know why Gabby Giffords is hiding from the very gun owners she claims to represent,” said Sean Sorrentino, while protesting outside.

Let’s go to the tape. Watch how they’ve edited it to make it appear that I answer every question Mark asks. This reporter made me look awesome. (If the video doesn’t load for you, this is the link to watch it at their website)

WNCN: News, Weather for Raleigh. Durham, Fayetteville

ABC weighs in with this

Gabrielle Giffords holds Raleigh gun control rally

Not bad.

Here’s News 14 Carolina. I see that I need to work on not sounding so flat.

Here’s the print story from News 14

Gabrielle Giffords meets with Raleigh gun owners to discuss gun control

RALEIGH — Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords visited North Carolina as part of a nationwide tour to promote tougher gun laws.

Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, met with gun owners and victims of gun violence at The Pit restaurant in downtown Raleigh.

The group, Grassroots North Carolina, protested Giffords’ appearance criticizing it for being an “invitation only” event.

“They said they were speaking for the gun owners. Well, they’re hiding from the gun owners,” said Sean Sorrentino.

And finally, the Raleigh newspaper, The News and Observer.

Giffords, NC group both claim to represent gun owners’ best interests

RALEIGH — Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords urged a small group gathered Sunday at The Pit restaurant to keep up the battle to expand criminal background checks on gun sales.

Across the street, about 20 protestors with Grass Roots North Carolina held signs saying “Guns Save Lives.” The protest was the group’s latest attempt to show its frustration with Giffords’ message and with event organizers. A day earlier, Grass Roots North Carolina President Paul Valone publicly offered 100 rounds of free ammunition to the first person to identify the firing range Mark Kelly, Giffords’ husband, visited Sunday morning. The offer was made because Giffords’ and Kelly’s group, Americans for Responsible Solutions, didn’t publicly release details surrounding their Raleigh visit, Valone said.

By keeping the details hush-hush, Giffords and Kelly were not engaging with real gun owners, just a pre-selected group, he said.

Grass Roots North Carolina protest organizer Sean Sorrentino disagreed. Expanding criminal background checks places a hurdle in front of gun owners, Sorrentino said.“It’s saying I have to prove my innocence before I can use my Second Amendment rights,” he said.

Our mission was to deny them the chance to claim to be the middle ground. They are trying to play the “We’re moderate” card. Note how every reporter titled their story except N&O. “Gun Control.” There’s no euphemisms like “Gun Safety.” No “Common Sense Gun Laws.” It’s straight up “Gun Control.” That is pure win for our side.

I am really pleased with how the protest went. GRNC looked pretty good and Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly were variously tarred as lying about the round table and as plain old gun controllers.

If they were hoping to sweep in and change anything, they’ve failed. They’ve only managed to get my face on 3 of the 4 major news channels and GRNC’s repudiation of them in every single story printed. Having failed in their mission, they got in their jet and flew to Asheville so Gabby can continue her rehab.

I hope that Gabby gets better. There’s no reason a would be assassin should destroy her life. There’s also no reason she and her husband should try to use that assasination attempt to take away our rights.

Friday Funny

For some reason, with the No More Names (a wholly owned subsidiary of Michael Bloomberg, Inc.) bus coming to Raleigh tomorrow, Moby Dick came to mind.

…to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.

—Moby-Dick, Chapter 135. “The Chase.—Third Day

Doesn’t that sound just like a gun grabber screaming his/her hatred towards guns and gun owners?

BloombergAhab

Hmm…

The White Whale swam before him as the monomaniac incarnation of all those malicious agencies which some deep men feel eating in them, till they are left living on with half a heart and half a lung. That intangible malignity which has been from the beginning; to whose dominion even the modern Christians ascribe one-half of the worlds; which the ancient Ophites of the east reverenced in their statue devil;—Ahab did not fall down and worship it like them; but deliriously transferring its idea to the abhorred white whale, he pitted himself, all mutilated, against it. All that most maddens and torments; all that stirs up the lees of things; all truth with malice in it; all that cracks the sinews and cakes the brain; all the subtle demonisms of life and thought; all evil, to crazy Ahab, were visibly personified, and made practically assailable in Moby Dick. He piled upon the whale’s white hump the sum of all the general rage and hate felt by his whole race from Adam down; and then, as if his chest had been a mortar, he burst his hot heart’s shell upon it.

—Moby-Dick, Chapter 41. “Moby Dick” 

 Sounds like the mind of a gun grabber to me.

Time for the next phase in the Leftist attack on America

Because America is always and forever wrong, the Left will have to execute a big pivot on the Boston bombers. Frustrated in their hope that the killers would turn out to be fat, middle aged white Christianist hatriots, the Left will have to find something new to blame us for.

Chicago Muslims on Friday condemned the Boston attacks and said they hope anti-Muslim sentiment doesn’t rear its ugly head.

Yeah, because that’s how we Hatriots roll. We see two Muslim killers and we start burning down mosques and running wild in the streets hitting hijab wearing women with bats.

For once, I wish the story wasn’t about me and people like me. For once I’d like to be left alone. They should at least have the decency to accept that it wasn’t a white militia member waving a Gadsden flag without blaming me for some mythical backlash too.

But as surely as night follows day, now that the last bomber is caught, tomorrow the airwaves will be filled with Leftists “hoping” that we unwashed racists can hold in our prejudices long enough for the oppressed Muslims in our society to get to safety.

Me? I just want to know if they worked alone or had help.

UPDATE: Right on schedule

 

Frank Lautenburg never lets a crisis go to waste

Frank Lautenburg has never been shy about tap dancing through rivers of blood if he thought it would move him one inch closer to his goal of taking our rights.

“It is outrageous that anyone, even a known terrorist, can walk into a store in America and buy explosives without any questions asked,” Lautenberg said in a statement earlier today. “If we are serious about public safety, we must put these common-sense safeguards in place. While the police have not revealed what specific explosive materials were used in Boston, what we do know is that explosive powder is too easy to anonymously purchase across the country.”

No word on whether he means to include pressure cookers, and look alike military style crock-pots in his background check bill. It’s a sad country that lets ordinary citizens wander up to any cash register, plunk down cash, and buy any legal product.

Rather than background check everyone, wouldn’t it be easier to just make a list of all the dangerous people and put them in jail or the mental ward? Or is that too easy?

Gunblogger and friends counterprotest the Raleigh MAIG vigil

After the Durham MAIG press conference yesterday, there was a “candlelight” vigil in Raleigh.

Rallies were held around the country and here in North Carolina Thursday for a National Day to Demand Action following the Newtown tragedy.

A candlelight vigil was held in Raleigh. More than 100 candles were used to represent how many days it has been since the school massacre where so many young children died.

Here’s some video

 

(RSS Readers, click HERE for Video)

 The weepy woman profiled, Kim Erickson Yaman is not, strictly speaking, a gun violence survivor. Here she is in her own words.

I want to point out that although we had no way of knowing at the time, my children and I weren’t necessarily in danger. My children had a Turkish folk dance practice that day in the offices of a faculty member one floor up from the conference room where most of the shootings took place. The children were fine, I was fine, we weren’t in the conference room when Lu Gang came to “solve a problem” he had with losing a dissertation award to a fellow doctoral student.

She laid on the floor and hid in another building and now, 20 years later she’s attacking my rights to own a firearm. In any other case, we’d be doing whatever we could to help a poor woman get over her PTSD. Instead the media and the Left (but I repeat myself) is celebrating it and encouraging her to wallow in it.

The three protesters were me, Josette from GRNC, and Bob Murdock, a retired police officer who I first met at the Durham press conference.

“I think what they’re asking for is ridiculous,” said Garner resident Sean Sorrentino.

It is ridiculous. They want to criminalize me handing a gun to a friend when they know full well that this law will not affect criminals in any way.

A pro-gun blogger crashes MAIG’s press conference (*VIDEO*)

UPDATE: Want to “Punch Back Twice as Hard?” Check out this post with email addresses and twitter link to call the mayors out for their deceit.

——————

Today was awesome. I had to be in Durham today, and just this morning I found out that the Durham Mayor, a (Illegal) Mayors Against Illegal Guns was holding a press conference to push for passage of Harry Reid’s anti-gun bill. There’s something really cool about seeing the faces of three Mayors when they realize that they’ve invited a question at a press conference from a political opponent.

Harry Reid’s bill, S649 includes an almost carbon copy of Senator Shumer’s “Fix Gun Checks Act.” That bill would have criminalized something I did last year. My wife wanted to learn to shoot my Ruger 10/22. I took my rifle to a friend’s farm and gave it to him. My wife went up to his farm and he taught her to shoot it safely out on the “back forty.” Then he put it in her truck and she brought it home. He had the rifle for about 4 months. S649 would put all three of us in Federal prison for 5 years each, minimum. I asked the mayors, “How would making me, my wife, and our friend Mike into federal felons keep criminals from selling guns to each other on the streets of Durham, Morrisville, or Chapel Hill?” Here’s the video that they played at 6pm.

(RSS Readers, click HERE to see Video)

 I wish you could see how it went down. It was incredibly fun to mess up their set piece press conference. They had children from a local school, a bunch of the sort of women you’d expect for something like this, and some dorky looking fool in a cheap suit and a bad haircut who claimed to be working for MAIG.

The story that went with this video quoted me pretty extensively.

Not everyone at the Durham event, however, agreed with stricter background checks.

Sean Sorrentino, who runs the site NC Gun Blog, said universal checks won’t work because criminals will still figure out ways to get guns.

“I don’t’ think background checks are anything but one more way to trap citizens and send them to jail when all they want to do is exercise their constitutional rights,” he said.

Sorrentino said he believes much of the proposed federal legislation just hurts law-abiding citizens and that there is a lot of detail that people haven’t considered.

For example, he said, it would be illegal for him to loan a gun to a friend to practice shooting – a felony crime that could land him in federal prison for five years.

“If you can’t be trusted with a firearm, you can’t be trusted without a custodian,” Sorrentino said. “If I can’t hand you a firearm and feel safe, then maybe we ought to consider putting you in a place where you can be taken care of.”

I’m particularly proud of dropping David Codrea’s custodian line on them.

If I see other versions of this video, either on WRAL or on NBC17, who also interviewed me, then I’ll post them.

UPDATE: Check out this post with email addresses and twitter link to call out the mayors for their deceit.

Some questions for Bloomberg and Schumer

I have some questions from that pair of rich elitist New Yorkers, Bloomberg and Shumer about their “comprehensive background checks.”

 

This pretend Fudd is saying we need “comprehensive background checks.” to “stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns.”

After reviewing the info on PAGunBlog, I have some questions. Could either Chuck Shumer or Mikey Bloomberg please answer the following?

  1. How will slapping me and my wife with felony charges for leaving my guns in the house and going on an 8 day business trip prevent criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?
  2. How will criminalizing me borrowing my friend’s gun to go hunting stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?
  3. How will criminalizing gay partners and unrelated roommates every time one leaves a gun in the home for 8 days and leaves stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?
  4. How will criminalizing my borrowing my friend’s rifle to go shoot a weekend Appleseed stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?
  5. How will criminalizing me teaching someone to shoot on their own land stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?
  6. I once loaned my rifle to a friend so he could teach my wife, who is afraid of guns, how to shoot. I drove it to his farm and handed it to him. That week, when my wife went up there, they went out on his back 40 and shot holes in a cardboard box. He kept the rifle for a few months, and my wife went up there several times. Then he put the rifle in her truck and she drove it home. I pulled it out of the truck and put it back in my closet. Let’s count the felonies. One for me giving it to him. One for him putting it in her truck (unlawfully transfering it to her). One for me taking it out of her truck (unlawfully transfering it from her to me). And too many to count each time they handed the rifle back and forth to each other when they were shooting. How will each of us getting a mandatory 5 years for each felony stop criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from buying guns?

These are the questions that I expect my Senator will ask about Chuck Shumer’s bill.

UPDATE: If you’re new here, check out my list of gun companies who are boycotting New York.

UPDATE 2: In comments, Roland McDonald asks a pertinant question.

Exactly where in the constitution is the Federal Govt granted the power to in any way regulate legal exchanges between individuals.

The Feds are given exclusive power to regulate “interstate trade.” How is me selling a gun to my friend, or loaning it to him to teach my wife to shoot, considered “interstate trade?”

Fourth Circuit gets it right on Open Carry

Does Open Carry, in an Open Carry state, give police a reasonable articulable suspicion that a crime is occurring?

Cops can’t just stop you, frisk you, or demand identification from you. Terry v. Ohio decided that a police officer must have “reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime and has a reasonable belief that the person “may be armed and presently dangerous” before he can detain you. But does that change if you’re hanging out with a person who openly carries a firearm?

Nathaniel Black was part of a group of men in Charlotte, North Carolina who local police officers suspected might be engaged in criminal activity. In particular, Officers suspected that after seeing one of the men openly carrying a firearm – which was legal in North Carolina – that there was most likely another firearm present. When police began frisking the men one by one, Mr. Black wished to leave, but was told he was not free to leave. Officers chased Mr. Black and discovered that he possessed a firearm; it was later discovered that he was a previously convicted felon. Mr. Black was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. Before the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, Mr. Black moved to suppress the evidence against him. His suppression motion was denied, he entered a guilty plea preserving a right to appeal the denial of the suppression motion, and he was sentenced to fifteen (15) years imprisonment. The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, however, determined that the officers had improperly seized Mr. Black, suppressed the evidence against him, and vacated his sentence.

Read the whole thing.

The long and short of it is that doing something legal, like openly carrying a firearm, can’t be used to justify a detention and a search. We can agree that Black was breaking the law. But we can’t allow the police to decide that my carrying a gun permits him to search all my friends.

Great decision by the Fourth Circuit.

Takeaway from this? Insist on your rights. When the cops try to detain you, say that you want to leave. Try to leave. Force them to prevent your departure. I wouldn’t go so far as to run and make them tackle me, but by trying to leave he was able to prove in court that his stop wasn’t a consensual encounter.

It’s not a bug, it’s a feature

Information Week seems to be unclear on the concept. They are bemoaning the fact that the ATF gun trace system is antiquated and relies of microfiche and manual searching rather than a nice, efficient computerized database.

If you’re wondering why the ATF doesn’t replace its kludge of a system with a state-of-the-art database management system that could locate documents in minutes instead of days, it’s because there are laws against it. The agency is restricted by the Firearms Owners Protection Act from creating a national database of gun registrations, sales or owners. The influential National Rifle Association gets fidgety at the mere mention of a centralized firearms database. So ATF must concentrate on accessing, integrating and managing the records that are available under current law.

Yep. And I’ll bet that if they announced an intention to build an illegal database they would lose all their records in a suspicious fire. I could not condone the unlawful destruction of government documents by a mob wielding torches and pitchforks, but I would certainly understand it.

Something to think about. The form you fill out when you purchase a gun is called a Form 4473. The dealer who sold the gun to you is required to keep the paperwork for a minimum of 20 years. If he goes out of business, he has to ship all the 4473s he has to ATF, who put them in their microfiche records.

Do you think that the ATF destroys any records older than 20 years? They should. Maybe we can pass a law mandating that they do.