Friday, April 17, 2009

Why I Left the NRA

You read it right. I'm letting my membership expire. I'm leaving. I'm through. I quit.

No delayed April Fool's, no joke, I'm done with the NRA.And it hurts. I've been a member for the last 13 years. I've been proud of it. I've boldly shown off the stickers, worn the hats, read every magazine they sent me and even had the pleasure of attending three annual conventions (Pittsburgh, Houston, St. Louis.)

But I've had enough of compromise. I've had enough of garbage like this:

That's a link to an article about Obama's stated commitment to an international arms treaty with Mexico. Oh, don't worry! He won't re-enact the 1994 'Assault Weapons' Ban! Instead he'll sign a treaty that subverts the sovereignty of the United States and nullifies our own Bill of Rights.

So what does this have to do with the NRA? Well, they signed off on it, preferring, as usual, an incrementalist approach to an absolutist stance.

Add this to a long list of grievances. My decision was already made, but this makes for a poignant illustration. They supported John McCain. They didn't lift a finger to help Wayne Fincher. They did nothing that I can find for David Olofson. They tried to ride in on the white horse when the SCOTUS overturned the local DC ban, even though they wouldn't touch the case until it looked like a sure win.

They don't call for the abolition of the ATF.

They don't call for the repeal of existing unconstitutional laws, (like GCA 1968 or NFA 1934) instead they call for their enforcement, as though that's some sort of palatable alternative to even more draconian control mechanisms.

They don't get into any fight they might lose. And when they sign away more freedom, they stick out their chin, beat the drums, and tell us it's a victory for freedom. And then they proudly proclaim how cold and dead their hands must be before they give up their guns.

Where's the line in the sand NRA? In some distant and horrific future, I can just see Wayne LaPierre - grayed and hunched, wrinkled and feeble, but with that same over-my-dead-body sneer. Addressing the annual NRA convention in 2021, he defiantly raises a smart gun in the air. It beeps and an LED in the stock lights up in a greenish hue upon recognition of his fingerprints, identifying him as the true owner. He holds up his national gun owner's ID card and a copy of the registration for this particular weapon in his other hand, just so everyone in the crowd knows he's a "law abiding" gun owner. The ATF agents on stage (now required at any gun rights rally, thanks to NRA-sponsored legislation) watch on through dark Ray-Bans, bravely "enforcing existing gun laws". He sidles up to the microphone, and growls, "FROM MY COLD, DEAD HANDS."

That's the NRA I left. That's the NRA that supported John McCain. That's the NRA that re-writes the truth as they see fit. That's the NRA that will always...ALWAYS back down.

I'm going to the JPFO. Jews For the Preservation of Firearms Ownership. They're for real.

I know a lot of people sticking with the NRA. I know a lot of life members who have already paid up. Part of me wishes I were a life member, because then I could send my complaints to Wayne & Co. expecting to be heard. But now I'm just going to be an 'ex'.

I can understand those who wish to stay. For a long time, I held off on leaving because the NRA is just so BIG, and I figured that even if they aren't the perfect gun rights advocacy group, at least they're the most recognized. And the better their numbers, the more effective they'll be, right?

Tell you what. Let me know when the NRA takes back freedom. I'll be first in line to renew.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Binghamton Shooting - Harsh Reality

We are recently apprised of the blood spilled in New York. Blood baths like this make the news every now and then. Of late, there seems to be a disproportionate amount of mass shootings in the news. No sooner have the bodies hit the floor than everyone wrings their hands and asks, "Why?" and The Search for Answers begins. Invariably we hear about societal ills - too much violence in entertainment, the despondency of pop culture, the superfluence of weapons available in America, etc. Invariably, someone will propose a "solution," and months or years later we find ourselves staring at another blood soaked room piled with warm corpses. I have a few observations about mass shootings. These incidents have many common elements from which we can learn how to not make it happen again.

The first commonality is the inability of the victims to return fire. These massacres always occur in Gun Free Zones - you know, places where some wise policy maker has declared it illegal to carry a gun. Somehow the shooters always ignore the signs, policies and laws. When these things happen, we ask "How could this HAPPEN?" when quite plainly, the answer is that no one had the ability to shoot back.

The only exception to the Gun Free Zone rule that I can think of is the shooting in Samson, Alabama. In New York, Columbine, V-tech, and all the other school shootings, the victims were all forbidden from the means to protect themselves. Samson is a little different, because Alabama allows concealed carry. However, it's worthy to note that it occurred in a small town where such an incident is far less likely to occur. So even though they could have been armed, those who encountered the shooter were not, likely for the same reasons most most small-town Americans wouldn't carry a gun in their home town, but would on a trip to a big city. But with that exception, every other shooting has occurred somewhere where people were FORBIDDEN to protect themselves with firearms.

The second thing to note is that the police have yet to save anyone. Columbine, V-Tech, and New York give us a score of Killers: 55, Cops: 0 (not counting the shooters, who bagged themselves.) So far the only hero coming to the rescue is Suicide, which has ended each of the above massacres. Can you imagine being at the mercy of a madman, knowing that your only chance is for him to kill himself?

So where were the cops? Well, in New York, they were hiding behind their cars, judging by the pictures on Fox News. In Columbine and V-Tech they found better cover (trees.) That's right - the same SWAT teams that will blow your door off the hinges, storm into the house, flashbang your kids, and hold your family hostage while they scream curses at you if they suspect you're selling pot, will hide behind whatever they can find when there is a REAL threat. (Thanks to David Codrea for making this point over at his blog - The War on Guns. I can't take credit for the idea, but it's worth reiterating.)

Further, when the smoke clears, the cops (or at least their spokespersons) are the first ones to come out against allowing any member of the public from protecting themselves. We hear the same tired tripe about how it will only "escalate the violence" and that you should always give the aggressor what they want. So the question is, what if they want to kill you? (More props to David.)

Now don't get me wrong - I can't entirely fault the cops for hiding behind trees and cars. I mean in each of these situations, they had no way to know how many shooters there were, where they were, how they were armed, etc. And statistically, the event usually ends itself, so to speak. They want to go home at the end of the day, and charging into gunfire won't help them accomplish that goal. My objection is to the notion that they are somehow going to protect us. So far, their track record is worse than failure. Sure, in this litigious society, public officials are going to be reticent to tell people to go arm themselves. But we've seen multiple times now that the alternative is NOT that the police will protect you. THEY WON'T. They'll stand by while you die and pick up the shooter's brass when it's all over. The choice we have is NOT between police protection and self protection - the choice is between self protection and NO protection.

Next we come to the common threads in the media reporting. In the hours following a massacre, there is an ongoing contest amongst the major news outlets to make the incident sound as horrible as possible. Demonization of the weapon used must be maximized and facts about the weapon's legality, charateristics, capabilities, and functionality must be ignored for full effect. After all, the public is much more likely to cry out for a ban if the shooter was weilding a full auto .50 caliber high power sniper assault rifle that fires armor piercing heat seeking laser guided bullets accurate to a mile at 87 rounds per second with a 5,000 shot clip, pistol grip, bayonet lug, folding stock, barrel shroud and thing in the stock which tells time that anyone (including your kids!) can buy at Wal-Mart for $59.95 with no permit, background check and even if you tell the checkout clerk, "I AM GOING TO KILL PEOPLE WITH THIS."

Another commonality is the outcry to "do something" (see above rationale for such outcry). Instead of analyzing the FACTS of the situation, the anti gunners rely on good ol' emotion.
FACT: If no one can shoot back, everyone is at the shooter's mercy.
FACT: The shooter does not care what the law says.
FACT: The police can't respond as fast as anyone in the killing zone, and when they get there, they are historically proven to wait until the incident is over to do anything.

Collectively, we refuse to learn from these massacres. Collectively, we promote the murder with every new citizen disarmament law that is passed. Collectively, we willingly cede power to mass murderers and psychopaths.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Election Observations

First things first - I think I'm going to blow a gasket if I keep listening to these libtards question Sarah Palin's qualifications. For the love of everything logical, how can you ignore the fact that Barack Obama is a FRESHMAN SENATOR (such a freshman that's he's not even up for re-election yet) while you call a GOVERNOR OF A STATE unqualified?

Don't get me wrong. I'm not voting for McCain. Despite all the posturing, I'm sticking to the classification I assigned him a full year ago (along with Romney andGuilani): RINO. As much as I like Palin (I could vote for her with a mostly clean conscience) the man at the top of the ticket does not represent freedom.

This post is rather stream-of-consciousness, so bear with me, but the next thing on my mind is the hilarious assertion that Obama made about the 'right to privacy' found in the Constitution. Suddenly he's so concerned with personal freedom that he'll name something that exists as an extrapolation (one I agree with, but an extrapolation, nonetheless), but he continues to ignore freedoms specifically protected by name. (The Second Amendment of course.)

We're in for a crap-storm of government growth and expansion no mattter who gets elected. They both like to quote billion dollar figures, and what they have in common is those are billions they want to spend.

Goodness, I think the Republic may very well be lost.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Seven Years

I'm mourning today. September 11th brings forth nothing but sadness for me. No national pride. No sense of 'for the greater good.' No fond remembrance of that brief surge of national unity. Just sadness.

I have a myriad of thoughts and emotions about that day, but the most prevalent is sadness for our national loss - our national loss of freedom. Think of all the freedom we've lost in the last seven years under the guise of 'security'. Now they can label you a domestic terrorist and deny you due process. Now they're watching at every turn, and they don't even hide it. Our airports have turned into cattle processing freedom-free zones where any hint of due process, rights, and personal dignity are utterly lost. We've been told to accept the cold loss of liberty as "the reality of the post-September 11th world." And the damned sheeple welcome it.

Have you seen any hope of it getting any better? Me neither. And I think it is a hell of a way to memorialize almost three thousand dead Americans - a hell of a way to mark their graves.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Reflections on Gustav

This storm and the events it bring should be interesting at least. I have several disjointed thoughts on the matter. I'll present them here, in no particular order.

- Let's hope it wipes NOLA from the map. Finish what Katrina started and end the drain on the US taxpayer. If the city is not even there anymore, maybe the bellyaching and whining about how everyone else hasn't done enough will stop. In all candor, forgive my cold heartedness. I know people have homes and lives there, but I'm sick to freaking death of hearing about how the 'government dropped the ball' during Katrina. We've seen the uber-dependent welfare state at its worst, and it is NOLA. Maybe if it's gone some of the culture of dependence will go with it.

- Mandatory evacuations - does the government's audacity know no bounds? From the linked article: They threatened arrest, loaded thousands onto buses and warned that anyone who remained behind would not be rescued. So it's a crime to stay in your own house? (I know it's stupid, but criminally stupid?)

- Looters. Ray "This City Will Be Chocolate" Nagin had this to say: "Looters will go directly to jail. You will not get a pass this time," he said. "You will not have a temporary stay in the city. You will go directly to the Big House." So, Ray, are you admitting that last time (in the aftermath of Katrina) you were knowingly giving violent thugs a free pass while at the same time you had every LEO you could recruit playing Gestapo and forcibly disarming the law-abiding ? I know you're stupid, Ray, but you're not that stupid. No, I think you're just that evil. Your evil is borne of cowardice - cowardice that recoils at the notion of a human being affirming their dignity in the act of self defense. To defend their lives and property without needing you, or your thug storm troopers, Ray. I know that sends chills down your slimy statist spine. I hope this time next week you're the mayor of nothing. It's what you've earned.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Lesser of Two Evils?

Stephen said...

But is it practical to sit at home on your butt, on principal, and suffer those least McCain's pick of Palin offers hope to those of us within the gun culture.

Thanks to Stephen in the comments section of my 'What will we do?' post for furthering the discussion on the matter. It's of interest to me, as this is the first election in my voting lifetime that I consider to be totally pointless. Generally election season is very stressful for me. I follow the presidential race quite closely and fret about what will become of the country if the Democrat wins.

I've stated my views rather frankly. I'll expound a bit on why I (a conservative Christian former Republican best described as a 'Constitutionalist') can't vote for McCain with a clean conscience.

I committed at the very begging of all this that there were three men in the Republican race who would never get my vote - the three RINOs. McCain, Romney, and Guiliani. The latter two are so socially liberal that I can't believe they ever got a single Republican vote. Moot point.

In order to consider McCain, I think it's important to look at him prior to the election (true of any candidate, really.) He's in 'get elected' mode now, which means he'll say anything to anybody to get a vote as long as it won't come back to haunt him later on a big enough scale. My beefs:

1. McCain-Feingold ('Campaign Finance Reform.') Blackout dates on free speech. Somewhere here in the near future, it will be illegal for me to actually blog on this election. I can't come up with any more blatant restriction of the First Amendment. I've become increasingly in-tune to rights violations, and I just haven't seen nearly as much trampling of the First Amendment as the Second and Fourth. (I grant you, that's a subjective observation, so I would welcome a challenge on the statement.) But Campaign Finance goes a long way towards making government controlled speech a reality.

2. The gun show loophole. He's no friend of gunowners and never has been. Go ahead and believe what he says today if you want, and get all excited about the cute sit-down he had with LaPierre and Cox a couple months ago, but I'm about ready to cut up my NRA membership card over it. Bitter enemies for how long? And now they're best friends. I'm equally as disgusted with Limbaugh, Hannity and all the other conservatives who at first hated him, but are now waving the pom-pons.

3. His greatest stated principle is his willingness to be 'a maverick' and go 'cross the aisle.' I don't doubt this guy would sell us out to socialized health care in a minute. Maybe he won't be the President that makes it his top agenda item like Obama, but if social medicine gets signed into law, what's the difference?

Palin - She doesn't change anything for me. I agree she seems like a good conservative, and if she was the candidate, I'd vote for her. But a VP doesn't really do very much, and I don't see any point in voting for him hoping he croaks so she can fill his spot.

So to those who plan to vote for him because he won't be 'as bad' as Obama, I'd like to know specifically what you think will be better. I'm not trying to be rude, bitter, or snide. You and I are probably very similar in our views, Stephen. But we've come to different conclusions about what to do, and I'm interested in your thoughts (or for that matter anyone else's who holds the same stance.)

For my part, I've almost reached the conclusion that the ballot box has failed.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Why is this a good thing?

David beat me to it on this one...I had the same reaction when I read this story. (Click the title link for his commentary.)

The next version of Internet Explorer will now offer what has been dubbed, 'porn mode.' Apparently, it's a history-free browsing mode that hides your activity from other users.

From the article:
Although casual users cannot see the previous user’s search history, authorities such as the police will be able to access it if necessary.

So...having no guarantee of privacy from the police is a good thing? By the way, the point of this whole thing has nothing to do with porn use (or the nature of the history you're hiding) but rather the fact that it's automatically presented as a good thing that the 'authorities' can always get the info they want.