Lie First, Lie Always: Slander

We’ve been pointing out for years – correctly – that “Protect” Minnesota has never, not once, made a single statement that is simultaneously original, substantial and true.

But today, the’ve slid over the line into slander.

“We hope that groups like Minnesota Gun Rights, Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus and Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance can provide good information to the FBI to find and arrest the people responsible” for the Dar Al Farook firebombing?

Even by Nancy Nord Bence’s, er, casual standards of honesty and integrity, this is – pardon the middle-English – chickenshit.

And in a jiust world, it’d be actionable.  Let’s review from a couple years ago; Defmation – Libel and Slander – are when Party A says something about Party B that:

  • Is untrue
  • Can damage Party B’s livelihood and reputation in the community
  • If Party B is a public figure (and the three groups that Nord Bence slandered certainly are),  it can be shown that Party A acted with a malicious disregard for fact.

“P”M’s claim that any Minnesota 2nd Amendment group knows who bombed Dar Al Farook is certainly untrue.  Accusations of abetting terrorism are certainly damaging to a community non-profit group.  And given Nancy Nord Bence and her associates’ long record of scabrous attacks on GOCRA and MNGOC, malice isn’t a huge stretch.

If the gun groups want to sue, I’ll set up a kickstarter to raise funds.

PS to lawyers in the audience:  Yep.  I know.  Negligence is a defense against the “Malicious Intent” element.  It says something that “P”M’s big defense in this case is “We’re too stupid and morally bankrupt to know any better”.  God bless America.

Lie First, Lie Always: They Think You’re Stupid

Further evidence of the statement “”Protect” Minnesota has never – not once – made a statement that was simultaneously substantial, original and true” came to us yesterday in the form of a press release from their “Research Director”, the onimatopaiec Richard Gigler.

Gigler is reading the same numbers I related to you a couple weeks ago, showing that crime has dropped sharply across Minnesota in the last year.

But the takeaway from any given type of evidence depends on a lot of things; in this case, whether one is inept at statistics, or one represents a group that pathologically lies about gun owners and knows their audience isn’t smart enough to know they’re being lied to.

In this case, as “evidence” that “more guns don’t mean more safety”, Gigler notes that the percentage of homicides committed by guns “…rose by 1%”   Of course, they didn’t; they rose by two thirds of a percent, and even that is a statistical anomaly caused by the drop in overall homicides, not a hike in gun homicides (which, as we noted, dropped 23% in the past year!).

But the lie-via-incompetence is worse than that – because the number of homicides dropped, and the percentage of homicides involving a gun “rose” as a fluke of statistical background noise…

…as the number of guns in law-abiding civilians hands rose sharply, and the number of carry permittees hit record numbers.

Meaning that the percentage of guns used in crimes dropped.

Again.

Why do you suppose it is that “Protect” Minnesota can’t tell the truth?

Lie First, Lie Always: What Doesn’t Happen At Dreamsicle Day, Stays At Dreamsicle Day

The other, I noted the hilarious-yet-grim irony of Betsy Hodges, mayor (for now) of Minneapolis, whiich is by far the most violent city in Minnesota, lecturing the state on “gun safety” and “violence”.

Betsy Hodges, at Dreamsicle Day last weekend.

In recent years, as crime in the state at large has plummetted (and the number of law-abiding citizens with carry permits has skyrocketed), crime in Minneapolis is getting worse.

Nonetheless, the gun control movement (once thier serial lies are revealed) carries on trying to convince the undecided that

  1. there’s a yuge problem with violence outside the urban core, and
  2. there’s a groundswell of popular support for addressing it by stripping the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens.

We address the former quite frequently on this blog.  The latter point takes a little more patience, but it’s out there.

Last year, I pointed out the laughably sparse turnout at “Protect” MN and Moms Want Action events in Eagan and on the mean streets by the Stone Arch Bridge by the Guthrie.

And this year?

Look at the photo of Mayor Hodges, above, standing in front of the banner wearing a dress made from a tablecloth salvaged from an old “Chi-Chis” restaurant.  Interesting angle, no?

Here’s the view from behind Her Honor, toward the, ahem, crowd.

25 people, not counting the cop.  And four of them are affiliated with “Protect” MN and Moms Want Action.  And the “rally” is in North Minneapolis, sort of – but the crowd, almost to a person, has that “south Minneapolis” look about them; the ELCA hair,

 

Lie First, Lie Always: The City Pages – Making It Up As They Go Along

The City Pages, 1997:   Solid (if solidly-left-of-center) reporting, a keen eye on local events (at least in Uptown, Downtown and Dinkytown), and some investigative reporting that shamed the local dailies.

The City Pages, 2017:  Creeping on Facebook pages, calling it “news”.

Mike Mullen – who we’ve encountered before – found a Facebook post which he opted to not only turn into a story, but one that is misleading to the point of fiction.  Here’s the headline:

It’s in regard to a rally on June 10 by “ACT for America”, an anti-immigration group.

Go ahead.  Read the text of Mullen’s little excrescence.  Find any reference to the NRA being involved?

Only an unlinked blurb of dubious provenance about AFA referring to itself as “the NRA of National Security”.

I’m loathe to quote from the piece – it’s dumb enough to be on Minnesota Progressive Project, which is a terminal condition.    But this piece caught my wary eye:

These cowboys won’t be alone at the Capitol. Liberal protest groups like the local Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) call ACT a “racist hate group,”

Well, there’s a shock.

If a conservative orders a pizza in the woods, and “SDS” (“Antifa”, the SPLC, Media Matters, Alonda Cano, Tina Liebling or Ken Martin, etc, etc, etc)  aren’t there to hear it, is it still “hate speech)?

 

Lie First, Lie Always: Gun Grabber “Science”

SCENE: Mitch BERG is trying out a guitar at a local music shop. As he begins to fingerpick the intro to “1957 Vincent Black Lightning”, Avery LIBRELLE enters the store, sees BERG, and walks up behind him.

LIBRELLE:Merg!

BERG:  Er, hey, Avery.  What’s up?

LIBRELLE:  We know you crazy gun nuts don’t care how many children die for your so called “right to keep and bear arms” -= but why do you oppose funding for basic public health research? What are you afraid of?

BERG:  Afraid?  Nothing.    Absolutely certain of what the criminal-safetyi movement means by “science?”  Now you’re on to something.

LIBRELLE:  Why?  Afraid of science?

BERG:  Hardly.  More like “Pretty certain nothing resembling “science” will take place

Here’s a great example; this message went out yesterday:

LIBRELLE:  So?

BERG:  So?  A survey using a self-selected  group of particpants, recruited by an anti-gun group?  Real “public health”, or even sociological or demographic –  research uses random subjects from a representative population – not people cherry-picked by a constituent that’s looking for a specific result.  And a control group?  Forget about it.

That’s not “science”.  It’s not even demography.  It’s public relations and politics.   If you call it “science”, you’re misrepresenting yourself and, yes, science itself.

Oh yeah – and in the fine print of the message, it says the “researchers” will likely quote you unless the results of the “study” are under a confidentiality agreement.

This isn’t science. This barely qualifies as group slander.  Anyone putting this, or its results, out there as “science” should be charged, at least rhetorically, with malpractice.

LIBRELLE:  Check your privelege, racist.

BERG:  Naturally.

LIBRELLE:  And you need…

(BERG cranks the guitar to 11 and starts playing the intro to “Anarchy in the UK”)

(And SCENE)

Lie First, Lie Always: The Media Are The Gun Grabbers’ Stenographers

Q: How can you tell a gun grabber is lying?

A: They are attempting to communicate via any way, shape or form.  Verbally or non-verbally.  In any language.

John Lott on how the media – knowingly or not – inflates the gun grabbers’ numbers.  And as national carry permit reciprocity gains speed in Congress, it’s going to get worse.

And it touches on something readers of this blog knew almost a decade ago; the pro-criominal-safety lobby’s pet “think” tank is a room full of lying sacks:

The Violence Policy Center (VPC), the source of these claims, asserts that in the 10 years from May 2007 to April 2017, U.S. concealed handgun permit holders were responsible for 969 nonself-defense gun deaths (with any type of weapon, not just handguns).

We’ve dealt with the VPC and their “statistics” on this blog before, and found them to be pure garbage.  Nohitng’s changed since then:

Looking at the VPC numbers for 2016, they claim that 26 permit holders supposedly committed 29 homicides. With over 15 million permit holders nationwide last year, those deaths amount to 0.2 homicides per 100,000 permit holders.

However, there is an arrest and investigation virtually anytime a permit holder uses a handgun in a public place. Almost all of the 2016 cases are listed as pending, and most of the defendants will be acquitted on account of self-defense.

So as I noted in my 2009 piece on the swine at the VPC, they treated all ambiguous cases as cut and dried murder.  And it gets worse:

The tally of 969 deaths is the result of triple and even quadruple counting. Michigan — by far the worst state according to VPC numbers — supposedly suffered 78 homicides and 390 suicides. Supposedly, Michigan was the site of over 40 percent of all deaths attributed to permit holders.

The main problem is that pending cases are counted in the same way as convictions. The Michigan State Police report the number of pending cases and convictions each year.

But since most cases never result in a conviction and many cases can be listed as pending for two or three calendar years, this results in massive over counting.

An additional 30 cases are added in, as a result of news stories. Apparently, no effort was made to check if these cases were already accounted for in the state police reports.

A case that ends in acquittal will, therefore, be counted four times if it is covered in a news story and is pending for three years. Over the past 10 years, 17 Michigan permit holders were convicted of homicide, not 78.

That comes to 1.7 cases per year, out of 560,000 permit holders in June 2016.

Which gives permittees a homicide rate about one quarter that of the state of Minnesota, and about 1/120th the rate for Michiganders as a whole.

That’s over two orders of magnitude safer than the general public.

And yet what do  you suppose the media reports, with airtight incuriosity?

The VPC’s only “violence policy” is their policy of genocide toward the truth.

Lie First, Lie Always: Green On Green

Minnesota’s anti-gun orcs – “Protect” MN, Moms Want Action, and the ELCA – are claiming victory today; the legislative session has ended without two very useful Second Amendment bills even getting to the floor.

The claims is both a lie and, sadly, disapointingly, depressingly true.

Delusions Of Vigor:  Moms Want Action came out bright and early, claiming credit, a mandate, and a groundswell of support for its “keep the cirminals safe” agenda.

It’s false of course; remember, Berg’s 19th Law states things very clearly:

“No Minnesota gun control group has ever made, nor will they ever make, a statement of fact that is simultaneously

  • Substantial
  • Original, and
  • True

And do you think that is still the case?

Well, duh.  It’s called “Berg’s Law”, and not “Berg’s Chanting Point”, for a reason.

The “state” didn’t reject self-defense reform (AKA “Stand your Ground”) or Constitutional Carry.  Indeed, the State as a whole elected a bipartisan majority that would likely have passed Self-Defense Reform; Constitutional Carry might have needed a few more years, but then that’s how reforms happen; sometimes they take sustained effort and patience.

So “the state” rejected nothing.  Either did the Legislature.

And while Minnesota’s Real American groups fully expected Governor Dayton Flint-Smith  to veto both bills – setting up an epic talking point for the 2018 gubernatorial election – it never came to that.

Cave-In, Collapse, Abdication, Capitulation:  Minnesota’s GOP leadership – which controls both chambers of the Legislature, albeit by a razor-thin one-vote majority in the Senate – opted not to let either of the bills out of committee.

They did the governor’s job for her.  They – especially Gazelka and Limmer – gundecked both bills at the beginning of the session.

Limmer’s stated reason?  He wanted to protect his freshmen (from an election that is three and a half years away, no less).

Which makes sense, except he went full steam ahead on a bunch of abortion bills that will bring down the wrath of the leftist goddesses on them anyway!

Nobody was “protected” from anything!

So no.  Moms Want Action and “Protect” MN didn’t “win” anything (although claiming credit for other peoples’ flubs is Politics On The Cheap 101).

This is Green on Green.  An “own goal”.  A shot on our own basket.  Fratricide.

A stab in the back.

Time To Get Serious:  The MN GOP House Leadership apparently thinks that Minnesota’s shooters are toothless.   And let’s be honest; when we don’t see a direct threat to our rights right in front of us, we kind of are.  We get complacent.   We figure we’re good.

We’re not.

Michael Bloomberg is pumping seven figures into criminal-protection efforts in Minnesota alone.  The criminal-protection groups look comical, with their sanctimonious babble and their ELCA hair and their legions of constipated Crocus Hill biddies parading around their tony neighborhoods in their orange shirts pretending to care about the lives of people in The Neighborhood – and they are.  But they are building numbers, and have gotten their big-money masters to yank the Strib’s leash back into line, and as dim and iill-informed and comical as they are, they’ve got money and the biggest megaphone in the state.

All we, the little guys, have is passion, numbers and the truth.  Which isn’t enough unless we used all three, every bloody day.  Because if we’re not advancing, they are.

So call the Big Three.

And if Kurt Daudt tries to fob the blame off on the Senate, please ask  him – why does the Senate control the House’s agenda?

Two decades ago, I left the GOP in part because the GOP on the national level took Real Americans’ votes for granted.

They’re doing it again.

And I’m not going anywhere this time.

 

 

Lie First, Lie Always: When The DFL Does Polling, The Truth Dies A Little

Kim Norton – the former MN Representative from Rochester who asked for a “conversation about gun safety”, and then blocked everyone who disagreed with the conclusion she’d been given by Michael Bloomberg’s “Everytown” – tried her hand at “polling” to try to gin up the impression that there was some actual support for gun control in Minnesota.

Her “polling” was a joke – and I say that as someone who has to know something about demographic statistics for a living – but it needed be nothing but, as it was intended, like most gun control statements, only to scare the uninformed, fool the gullible, and inflamed the uninformed.  Oh, and ingratiate herself with Michael Bloomberg’s minions, the better to pad out her post-legislative career.

Not sure what the motivation is for her, but Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn – a woman whose idea of “discussion” is the same as the cowardly Norton, and has done as little to earn her pointless air of condescension as Senator Ron Latz – is a rep from the only place she could get elected in this state; Minneapolis.

And in her latest subject constituent email, among other questions, she asks:

“Do you support or oppose passing universal background checks on all gun sales in Minnesota?”

Mark my words:  the responses to this question – which will draw self-selecting responses from people motivated to respond on the issue at all, in one of the most liberal districts in the state – will be presented without context by Becker-Finn, and likely the media, as indicative of the opinion of Minnesotans at large.

I’m making a note.  we’ll check back on this.

Lie First, Lie Always: Rev. Nancy Nord Bence, False Witness

To:  The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
From:  Mitch Berg, Presbyterian peasant
Re:  False Witness

Dear ELCA,

One of your reverends is lying through her impeccable teeth:

Your reverend keeps telling black people and Muslims that the HR288, the “Self Defense Reform Act”, is a special danger to them, because, she says, it’ll allow people to shoot people who “make them feel uncomfortable”.

It’s a lie.  Nothing more – and if you take your Ten Commandments seriously, nothing less.

The Reverend has had the truth about this matter explained to her, repeatedly.  “That hoodie / disdasha / person’s skin color made me scared” is not grounds to use lethal force in self defense1.

Ever!

She is not “mistaken”, and she certainly isn’t telling the truth.  She is not only willfully misleading people – she’s using her clerical office to lend her lies credence.

Is this the example your clergy should be setting?

Please see to this

That is all.

Continue reading

Open Letter To The Entire Twin Cities Media

To:  The Entire Twin Cities News Media
From:  Mitch Berg, ornery peasant
Re:  The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence

Back during my brief and unlamented reporting career, I had not a few editors and producers warn me off using certain sources – the ones that had a habit of feeding them bum information.

I’m going to do the same for you today.  To wit:

On the subject of guns, the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence – the director of “Protect” Minnesota – has never made a single, substantial, original, true statement. 

Not One..

Every word in there is a key qualifier.  I don’t doubt that she makes true, substantial, original statements about other things – Lutheran theology (I’ll let you Missouri Synod people mix it up on that), her family, sports trivia, whatever.   Those are not at issue.

But on the issue of guns, gun laws, gun owners, violence statistics, then the Reverend Nord Bence and her organization have never – not once – made a single statement that is simultaneously substantial, original, and true.

She/they may have made statements that are substantial and true – like, repeating broad statistics from the Department of Justice website (before they embroider them, anyway) – but the statements aren’t original.

They may have said things that are substantial and original – like “Stand your Ground is a threat to minorities and immigrants” – but it’s not true.   It’s devoid of fact.

The Reverend may have said things that true and original – like “Ron Latz supports our agenda” – but they were not substantial contributions to the debate; they were, as lawyers say, de minimis.  

And of course, as we’ve shown in several long series of threads on the Reverend, her predecessor in the office, and their “organization”, they have a long history of saying things that are substantial but unoriginal and false; of things that are original but insubstantial and false, and of course things that are true but insubstantial and unoriginal.  That goes without saying.

But the overriding realization is that the Reverend, and her precessessor Heather Martens, and their entire organization have yet to say a single thing on Second Amendment issues hat is simultaneously all three things – original, substantial and true.

And I’ll welcome the chance to prove it to any or all of you, point by point, with or without the Reverend there to speak on her behalf. The challenge is rhetorical – she openly tells her group never to engage with dissenters, and all too many of you in the media indulge her inability to defend her largely fraudulent agenda.

But this isn’t about her.  This is about you.  You need to stop treating the Reverend and her group as a legitimate source on Second Amendment issues.

She is not.   She feeds you false information, and you – God bless you all, journos tend not to know much about the subject – run it without any serious fact-checking.

More tomorrow.

Lie First, Lie Always: Delusions Of Adequacy

It’s been a frustrating week to be a Real American in Minnesota – an American who believes that law-abiding citizens should have more rights in the eyes of the law than criminals.

More on that tomorrow on the show.  Oh, yes – the show will fairly crackle with rage.

But there’s some comic relief.  Grim comic relief, under the circumstances, but relief nonetheless.

She Who Has Never Made  A Single Substantial, Original, True Statement About The Issue:  It’s been interesting seeing what the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence has rattling around her little ELCA-coiffed noggin.  This was in her email blast yesterday (emphasis added to highlight particularly comic passages by me):

I am pleased to announce that the House public safety committee omnibus bill introduced today in committee does NOT contain the Permitless Carry or Stand Your Ground bills! That was the goal of our Cure Gun Violence lobby day and rally on Tuesday—and we succeeded!

Make no mistake about it – the criminal-protection, black-victim-disarmament lobby, after spending ten times as much as the Real Americans in this past year for almost no results, obtained a victory of sorts, for now.  But they didn’t win it.   It happened due to nothing they did on their own.   Not one iota of it happened due to anything The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence’s fact-free rambling, the sanctimonious preening of the Dreamsicles, or the trunks full o Jacksons that the Bloomberg lobby spent.

No.  The GOP gave it to them.  They “won” a forfeited game.

Leadership in the Senate, apparently rendered pusillanimous via winning the majority, decided to play “protect the incumbents”, even though it’s three years ’til the election.

House leadership, hearing this, decided to play it “safe” – thus earning themselves a raft of well-deserved and impassioned primary challenges supported by a group of people…

…who, I can tell you right now, are pissed off at having their votes courted, but their policies ignored in the breach.

It was the kind of stupid error that makes being a Republican such a trying thing in this Godforsaken state.   How hard is it to dance with the ones that brung you?

But it wasn’t “Protect” MN’s f****ng win.  Those lumpen fossils and caterwauling shrews dominate their little echo chambers in Crocus Hill and Kenwood, and not a hell of a lot more.

The Lesson:  Even after years of winning, and of beating back serious challenges while in the minority, Real Americans not not relax.  We can not be complacent.  We can not trust the party for which most of us worked our asses off.

Liberal Messaging

On issue after issue after issue, the left’s messaging strategery seems to have changed to “pummel the public with inflammatory, scaremongering lies; the votes of the gullible, the incurious, the demented and the un-bright count the same as the votes of smart people, and are easier to secure”.

Focusing on the 2nd Amendment “debate” – it’s the one I read most constantly – the evergreen example is “Stand Your Ground laws allow people to KILL people because of the way they’re dressed”.

It’s balderdash, as we’ve explained in this space over and over.  The smart people know this.  The dumb people…

…are the intended customer for that particular lie.

With that in mind, New York’s junior machine apparatchik Kirsten Gillibrand has sounded off with a level of perspicacity reminiscent of Betty McCollum:


I was going to say “someone’s been watching too many “Miami Vice” reruns” – but that’d be too charitable.  While most liberals (and some Republicans) start out dumb on the gun issue, and some don’t get smarter (McCollum, ibid), it’s not like these hamsters exist in a vacuum.  It’s not like some NRA lobbyist, somewhere, hasn’t made Senator Gillibrand aware that silencers are far from silent.

Which means one of two things: Sen. Gillibrand is incurious about anything that doesn’t comport with the narrative she’s been given by her superiors, or she doesn’t care, and passing the narrative is the only goal.

I’m inclined to think “b”.

Lie First, Lie Always: The Anti-Gun Amateur Hour

Earlier this morning at the House Public Safety Committee hearings on the “Stand your Ground” billl, a “pro-bill” testifier erupted in a caracature of a pro-Trump, white supremacist tirade; at one point, he reportedly said it was time for gun owners to return to “lynching” people.

Then he got up and walked out.

He’s utterly unknown to Minnesota’s close-knit 2nd Amendment activist community.

The moment I saw the photo (a screen grab from video),  that voice in my head that monitors stereotypes screamed “Carlton graduate and non-profiteer paid to be a false-flagger”.

Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover.

“He” registered for the event as “Ross Koon”

And, sure enough, searching for “Russ Koon” leads you to a Facebook profile.

And here’s his publicly-visible post:

So he misrepresented himself about being a pro-gunner, and his “testimony” was a “satirical” sham designed to defame people he pretty much hates.

That’s pretty much the whole story, right?


Of course not.  Anti-gun ghoul Joan Peterson tweeted instantly:

Coincidence that the doyenne of Minnesota criminal-safety is right there ready to go with a tweet in support of this bit of “satire?”

But that’s just a clenched old liberal exercising her penchant for overheated hypberbole – right?

Of course not.   Mr. Koons’ pro-criminal-safety pedigree goes back a ways.  Turns out Mr. Koon’s mother is one Mary Koon.  And Mary Koon is a pastor at ultra-liberal Oak Grove Presbyterian Church, and publicly lists as her “likes”…

…Moms Want Action.

(“But” you might say, “that doesn’t make her a member!”.  Perhaps.  On the other hand, it’s pretty much all you need to do to be counted as a member, so we’ll run with it).

So let’s sum it up:

  • The scion of one of Minnesota’s white, privileged “elite” liberal families lied about his personal beliefs, in order to…
  • Slander gun owners in front of the legislature, and did it…
  • …with the obvious, full knowledge of Minnesota’s anti-gun/pro-criminal-safety “elite”.

This was just the most egregious episode in a hearing where the anti-gunners essentially beclowned themselves, treating the hearings like a private flash mob.

Keep up the good work, Reverend Bence!

(Thanks to the crew from MNGOC for all the research on this post)

UPDATE:  From a witness:

He didn’t immediately leave the building. I watched him get hugs and attaboys from several of the anti-gunners present, including the lady in charge of handing out red Everytown shirts.

This was no random happenstance.

Lie First, Lie Always: The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence Can’t Seem To Tell The Truth. Ever.

My first carry permit instructor, the late great Joel Rosenberg, drilled into his students’ heads one key, overarching idea; that shooting in self-defense was, at best, the second-worst possible outcome to an incident.  “You’re setting off a nuclear bomb in your life”, he said.

Shooting in self-defense is fraught with peril, for even the most law-abiding citizen and the most legitimate shoot.

And the criteria for “legitimate shoot” – the use of lethal force in self-defense – are both oppressively vague (in Minnesota) and relatively iron-clad.  To you use lethal force legally in self-defense:

  1. You must not be a willing participant in the incident.   You can’t start a brawl, and then draw your gun when someone pulls a knife.
  2. You must reasonably, immediately fear death or great bodily harm.
  3. The force you use must be reasonable; you can only use it to end the immediate threat to your life.
  4.  You must make a reasonable effort to disengage.  One exception in Minnesota is when you’re in your home – which means “within the walls of your domicile”.

There was a shooting over the weekend in Madelia, Minnesota.  The Strib’s John Reinan was on the hagiography beat (a Strib specialty.  The Southern MN News stuck to the facts.

If I had to guess, bsed on the information we have in front of us right now (and Berg’s 18th Law would tell us that relying on the media for actual information is dodgy at best), I’d suggest that shooting at someone’s car to blow out a tire as they’re fleeing is legal in Texas, but probably a bad move under Minnesota law.   Again, just guessing, and the shooter, David Petterson, is innocent until proven guilty.

But I’m not here to talk about the case, or the media’s reporting of it – not this time.

I’m here to continue my mission of making sure every single sentient Minnesotan knows that “Protect” Minnesota, even more than most criminal-safety groups, are to fact what “Baghdad Bob” was to journalism.

The blood was barely dry before The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence – “P”M’s “executive director” and one of about half a dozen actual members – released her opinion.

“Opinion” is putting it as charitably as ethically possible:

Look!  Boogeymen!:  Nord Bence starts out shaky:

We are already hearing chatter from the gun lobby about how unfair it was for law enforcement to charge David A. Pettersen with second-degree manslaughter and intentional discharge of a firearm in connection with the shooting death of Nicholas T. Embertson in Fieldon Township on Saturday. They are saying that this case demonstrates why the Stand Your Ground bill (HR0238), introduced earlier this session by Rep. Jim Nash of Waconia, should be passed.

Not sure what “Gun Lobby” the Reverend Nord Bence is referring to – neither GOCRA nor MNGOC nor the NRA have publicly opined on the case.  Minnesota Gun Rights is a potemkin organization – a scam, if you will.   They are not “the gun lobby”.

They also don’t know the law much better than Nord Bence; “Stand Your Ground” is useless if you don’t reasonably, immediately fear death or great bodily harm.  Not to do the county attorney’s job, but under Minnesota law, shooting at a fleeing car might not fly in court.

Preacher, Heal Thyself:  The Reverend Nord Bence – like her predecessor, Heather Martens, has yet to make a single, original, substantial, true statement on the issue of guns. I’m not sure she’s “lying” – telling untruths when you don’t know any better is merely ignorance.

But while Nord Bence is a comically inept spokesperson, it’s a good thing she’s got preachin’ to fall back on.  Because she’d make a terrible lawyer:

The Nash Stand Your Ground bill is dangerous for many reasons – not the least being the serious risk it would pose to communities of color and immigrants in our state.

Nord Bence keeps saying this.  I’m not sure she could even tell you why.   I’d guess it’s because one of her superiors in the Criminal Safety movement told her “FEELING THREATENED BY A HOODIE JUSTIFIES MURDER” or some such twaddle.

Which ties into this next bit:

 

But we should not forget that HR0238 would also tie the hands of local law enforcement and obstruct their ability to fulfill their sworn duty to protect the communities they serve.  If it were to pass, almost any shooting could be justified because the shooter “felt threatened,”

And again, as we noted a few weeks back, Nord Bence is either legally illiterate, or lying, or both.   While Minnesota’s self-defense laws are a marvel of unclarity, they are pretty clear on the point that you have to have an immediate fear of death or great bodily harm that you can convince a jury is “reasonable”.

Hoodies don’t count.

Will “teenagers speeding away in a car” pass muster?  I wouldn’t bet on it.

The Pettersen case demonstrates why it is so important that law enforcement personnel retain the right to do their job and determine when charges are warranted.

And Nancy Nord Bence demonstrates why “getting your information from “Protect” Minnesota is actually worse than getting no information at all.

The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight, Part V: Everyone With ELCA Hair Looks The Same

All this week we’ve been talking about “Protect” Minnesota’s press release, a week ago today.

And when I say “talking”, I mean “checking its many false assertions, and mocking it to a fine sheen”.

I – like the release itself – saved the worst for last.

Like Going To Courtney Love For Legal Advice:  We noted yesterday – the Reverend Nord Bence is utterly unclear on how self-defense law works.

In this next bit, she transposes that ignorance onto society at large.   I’m going to add emphasis:

Moreover, the Stand Your Ground bill represents a particular threat to people of color and immigrants, who are often met with suspicion by Minnesotans because they look and dress differently. If it were to pass, almost any shooting could be justified because the shooter “felt threatened,” even if the “threat” was a hoodie or a hijab.

This is a flaming lie.

You can not kill people because they make you nervous. Don’t be a moron.

Nord Bence isn’t the first to use it, of course; when self-defense reform was passed (with a bipartisan majority) in 2012, liberal commentators – from bloggers to Dakota County Prosecutor Jim Backstrom and Chaska police chief Scott Knight – made the same claim; that you could kill someone who “gave you stink-eye” or who “made you feel uncomfortable”.

It’s a lie, of course; “I felt uncomfortable” or “I’m scared of hijabs” is not “reasonable fear of imminent death or great bodily harm.”

And if the legal system started letting people off the hook for shooting people for those reasons, then it really, really wouldn’t be the guns’ fault.

And I can’t prove it, but I suspect Nord Bence knows this; while she eschews discussion with people who actually know the issue, she’s certainly had people try to set her straight.    At any rate, it’s a cynical lie, made in a complete vacuum of truth.  She should be ashamed, and I am looking forward to the chance to tell her to her face.

Already minorities are purchasing more guns than ever before because they feel afraid2;

Well, to be fair, the media did spend an entire election cycle pumping up irrational fear.  And they do have the same legal right to arm themselves that everyone else does.  I encourage law-abiding minorities to avail themselves of their rights (not “privileges”) along with the rest of us.

And for all the media’s manufactured barbering over “Stand Your Ground”, there are two facts they somehow never get around to:

  • “Stand Your Ground” was not a factor in the Zimmerman/Martin case.  Not even a little:   Even the prosecutor admitted that Zimmerman never had a chance to retreat.  The defense never invoked Florida’s “duty to retreat” exemption in Zimmerman’s defense, because he never had to.  It was a non-factor.  It was the media, and liars like The Reverend Nord Bence, who made it an issue.
  • Minorities invoke “Stand Your Ground” laws more often than whites when claiming self-defense:  In the only stats we have on the subject, it turns out that black citizens are twice as likely to invoke Florida’s “Stand your Ground” law, per capita.

passage of this bill could lead to a wholesale arming of communities that feel threatened by it.

Which, I suspect, is the part that bothers Nord Bence and her followers the most.  There’s a reason why their events – every last one – take place in lilywhite places like Eagan, and Burnsville, and Kenwood, and at the south end of the Stone Arch Bridge, and not at Plymouth and Sheridan, after all.

We’re Almost Done!:  Finally:

 And more guns mean more gun violence.3

No, they don’t.

Finally:  We wrap up with the big finish:

Protect Minnesota calls upon all Minnesota citizens—84% of whom support comprehensive background checks to keep firearms out of dangerous hands–to voice their opposition to the passage of these radical bills. We call upon leaders from both parties in the legislature to keep these bills from moving forward.

Every anti-gun legislator outside the metro area has been defeated; ask them how many Minnesotans support background checks?  Support for both bills is bipartisan and spread throughout this state, just like in 2012.

So when The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence says:

Yep, Reverend. Game on indeed. See you at the Capitol. I’ll be the one that’s part of a big freaking crowd of friendly, courteous, hardworking Minnesotans. You’ll be the one mincing about at the head of your pack of shrill husks. Bring the pain, ma’am.

And we call on Gov. Dayton to promise to veto these bills if they pass, confident that he will recognize them as bad for Minnesota and dangerous for Minnesotans.

Yes.

Yes, Governor Dayton.  Please, please please please please please.  I beg of you.

Once again, answer to your party’s lunatic fringe, and veto two bills that will pass with unanimous GOP support, and that of every DFLer who’s more than half an hour from downtown Minneapolis.

Give the GOP a club to use to smack up every DFL representative in the third tier of ‘burbs.  Give the GOP a statewide rallying point against the next DFL candidate for governor.  Turn the masses of shooters out; they tend to dial back the intensity of their activism unless they have something to rally around, more’s the pity, but this will serve nicely.

By all means, follow the advice of a woman who, to be charitable, has just expressed cataclysmic ignorance of every single fact she presented in this Doestoyevskian press release.  Of a woman who, as I’ve shown, is wrong on every single substantive claim she tried to make (and she knows it; it’s why she never, ever faces Human Rights advocates in open debate).

Follow the advice of a woman who might, on a big day, muster 100 middle aged white people with ELCA hair to phumpher and rut about, against the masses who turn out on sub-zero evenings in Saint Paul against her, and routinely melt down the Capitol switchboard, just in time for the gubernatorial campaign.

So yes, Governor Dayton.  Take the advice of the Right Reverend, and sow the wind.  The DFL will reap the whirlwind in 2018.

Sounds like a lovely plan to me!

Or, y’know, just sign the bills, follow the will of the people (who’ve been paying attention), and leave the state a slightly better place, at least in one area.

Your call.


The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight, Part IV: I Don’t Think That Word Means What The Rev. Nancy Nord Bence Thinks It Means

On Tuesday and yesterday, we discussed “Protect” Minnesota’s factually vacuous response to the House’s Constitutional Carry bill – which would allow people who are otherwise entitled to carry firearms to do so without having to jump through hoops.

Today, we’ll shift the focus to “Protect”‘s response to the self-defense reform bill – which The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence refers to as “stand your ground”, because the left and media paid a lot of good money to try to stigmatize that term after the Trayvon Martin episode, of which more later.

Field Marshal Of The Legion Of Invincible Ignorance:  I keep thinking I’ve found the Reverend Nord Bence’s dumbest lie of the lot.  I keep finding worse ones.  But this one may be the bottom of the barrel:

The Stand Your Ground bill (HF0238) would change Minnesota’s existing authorized use of force law by removing the obligation to retreat from danger before using deadly force. If passed, it would be admissible to use deadly force any place and anytime a person subjectively believed their life to be threatened, except against peace officers.

This part is actually true – not that it does Nord Bence’s larger point any good.

The presumption of innocence would be given to the shooter, while burden of proof for prosecution would be with the state. This is the law in Florida that enabled George Zimmerman to get away with the murder of Trayvon Martin.

It’s only two sentences – but they are steeped to saturation in ignorance and untruth.

Reverend: Please read the Fifth Amendment. Get back to us. Thanks.

Read the Fifth Amendment.  The accused always have a presumption of innocence!  The burden of proof is supposed to be with the state!

One wonders if the Reverend truly doesn’t know this – or if she is aiming on purpose for the dumb and illl-informed.

Minnesota currently allows individuals to use deadly force in self-defense, which is appropriate. But it’s an objective standard.

That is 180 degrees removed from correct.  It is subjective!

It’s called the “Reasonable Person” standard; would a “reasonable person” – or 12 of them on a jury, as Joel Rosenberg explained it – believe that you were in immediate danger of death or great bodily harm?   That was a start; those same reasonable people had to believe you also used lethal force appropriately, and weren’t taking part in a fight you were willingly part of.

It’s simple in concept, it’s intensely complicated in court, it’s generally logical, it makes lawyers rich…

…and it’s anything but objective.

You have to be able to show you actually were in danger and that you tried to retreat before resorting to deadly force. This bill removes the obligation to retreat and specifically gives the presumption of innocence to the shooter.

No.  The Constitution does.

The bill merely means that a prosecutor can’t try to hold an arbitrary, subjective definition of “retreating” against someone who is otherwise legitimately defending their life.

This is a major change in our understanding of what it means to defend yourself, a completely subjective standard.

Well, the Reverend Nord Bence is close to a point.  If she and her followers were to learn the current law and what the bill would actually do, it’d be a major change in their understanding, all right.

The Future:  The Reverend Nord Bence asks:

Is that what we want for Minnesota?

You’re a 120 pound woman who works at a shopping mall.  As you walk to your car, a man approaches you, draws a knife, and says “Bitch, get in the car”.  As he steps to grab you, you draw a handgun and shoot him.  He bleeds out as you wait for the police.

A decision you made in a fraction of a second ended one life – perhaps justly – and has just changed yours forever; as the late Joel Rosenberg said, you’ve just dropped a nuclear bomb into your life.

The county attorney will look at the evidence, and weigh it against the statute and, in Minnesota, a lot of case law.

  • Did you legitimately fear death or great bodily harm?  There was a knife, and his statements indicated he was bent on mayhem. Check.
  • Were you a willing participant?  Obviously not.  Surveillance camera footage showed you were clearly accosted.  Check.
  • Did you use appropriate force?   You shot him, he dropped, you ceased fire.  You ended the immediate threat.  Check.
  • Did you make a reasonable effort to retreat?   You were 120 pounds and in reasonable shape.  He was 250 and kind of a slob.  Could you have outrun him, thus avoiding the incident?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  But here’s what will happen; a decision that you had to make in a second, in a dark parking lot, under the most stress you will ever feel, will be gone over by someone with a BA in Political Science and a JD, sitting in a warm, well-lit office, protected by deputies with badges and metal detectors and guns, to determine if you tried hard enough, in his utterly subjective opinion, to retreat.   If he decides you did not?  You will go to trial, and spend your life’s savings trying to stay out of jail – not over whether you were reasonably afraid, but over the prosecutor’s opinion of your reflexes.    In the hands of a zealous-enough prosecutor, “duty to retreat” becomes an utterly subjective way of punishing people for otherwise perfectly-legitimate shoots.Like the one we just demonstrated.

That is why we need this law.

Oh, it gets worse still.  More tomorrow.


The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight, Part III: That Golden Ticket!

I’m continuing my five-part series going over “Protect” Minnesota’s press release on the Self-Defense Reform and Constitutional Carry bills, which were introduced last week in the House.

But first, a quick aside.

Records:  While the criminal-safety  movement would like you to think otherwise, gun violence is neither generally random nor unpredictable.  Our violent crime rate – which has been dropping for two decades – is not evenly distributed across the population.

I’m not referring to geography here – although the numbers also manifest geographically.

Ethnicity, either, for those of you who are inclined to see racial dog-whistles in all conservative writing.

But it’s a simple fact that if a person gets to age 21 without a violent felony record – whether they’re from rural Kentucky or downtown Baltimore – the odds are pretty good they will go through their entire life without one.

And the vast, vast majority of firearm crimes involve people with records of violent and serious property crime, either as perps, victims, or both.  It’s exceedingly rare that someone of any race with a  pristine record vis a vis violent and property crime shoots someone.  (Mass shootings are usually an exception – but they are also a different  phenomenon and, notwithstanding the coverage they receive, are vastly rarer.  Also, they are overwhelmingly associated with places where victims are disarmed – but that’s another discussion).

This isn’t a tangent; it’ll come back up.

Clairvoyance?:  Consider the following scenario:

A man walks out of a bank.  He’s carrying a sawed-off shotgun (a violation of federal law) and a bag of cash.

A policeman rolls up.  A policewoman jumps out and, taking cover behind her car, yells “Show me a your carry permit!”

That sounds absurd, doesn’t it?  It is, of course.  There’s a crime underway.  The subject’s paperwork is less relevant than the fact that they reasonably appear to be in the middle of committing a violent felony.

Here’s another scenario; a policeman sees a middle-aged black family man, with his wife and his kids, sitting outside a Dairy Queen across from Lake Josephine, drinking malts and talking about their day.   A passing police officer sees the imprint of the butt of a handgun under the man’s shirt.

It’s possible that the guy is carrying illegally – and the cop may well walk over to ask if the man has a permit (he does) and advise him to tuck in a little to avoid getting ninnies riled up.  But it’s pretty much a fact that middle aged family guys, Tony Soprano notwithstanding, generally aren’t gangsters on the warpath.

This discussion brings us to The Reverend Nord Bence’s next point (with emphasis added by me):

The permitless carry bill also represents a particular threat to law enforcement officers, who cannot possibly discern who is a “good guy with a gun” and who’s a “bad guy with a gun” during the few seconds they would have to respond to a lethal threat.

Um, what now?

Does The Reverend Bence think carry permits are externally visible?

If the officer is facing a lethal threat – an immediate threat to their existence on this planet in this lifetime – permit status is irrelevant.  If you present someone with a legitimate fear of death or great bodily harm, the paperwork is irrelevant.

And not just if you’re a cop.   One of the criteria one must face to justify lethal force in self-defense as a civilian is a reasonable, immediate fear of death or great bodily harm.  If someone is waving a gun, a knife, a machete or a chainsaw at you, and a reasonable person – 12 of them, really – would agree that your life is in danger right now, then the law doesnt’ require  you to be a mind-reader, whether you wear a badge or not.

And if your fear is not reasonable, you are going to be in trouble – as Saint Anthony officer Geronimo Yanez is discovering to his chagrin in court, after allegedly panicking and shooting and killing Philando Castile, who was in fact a good guy with gun, and had a plastic card in his wallet  to prove it.

Yanez might be acquitted – he’s innocent until proven guilty – but it points the the fact that when the Reverend Nord Bence says:

If passed, this bill would force police officers to treat everyone they encounter as armed and dangerous.

…she is, as usual, talking through her ELCA hair.  Cops are always alert for danger, but behavior counts – and the consequences of misreading behavior are serious and irreversible for the shooter, whether it’s a cop or a civilian.  And even more so for the target.

Handicap:  I’ll spot Nord Bence a point here:  I’ll help her explain the point that she apparently can’t.

A carry permit can, in theory, help a cop figure out who is and is not a law-abiding citizen, assuming there isn’t a violent encounter underway – something Nord Bence apparently hasn’t figured out.

Of course, all the information a cop needs to know about a citizen’s legal status is available with a call to their precinct, or a few keystrokes on the computer in their squad car, just as fast as checking the validity of a carry permit.

The Reverend Nord Bence may not know that – which is ignorant – or may know it but be trying to fool the ignorant, which is merely repellent.

It gets worse.


  • Monday:  Game On!
  • Yesterday: Data, Data Everywhere!
  • Today:  That Golden Ticket
  • Thursday:  I Don’t Think That Word Means What The Rev. Nancy Nord Bence Thinks It Means
  • Friday:  Everyone With ELCA Hair Looks The Same

The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight, Part II: Data, Data Everywhere!

All week, we’re going over the “Protect” Minnesota press release from last Friday evening (aka “where politicians take out their trash”).   Because the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence’s work is just too awe-inspiringly bad to tackle in just one post.

Aside:  I can hear you asking already; worse than a Heather Martens piece?

It’s a good question.  The answer is this; point for point, nothing is as factually void as a Heather Martens statement.  And if you let her work in long form, she is capable of packing immense amounts of untruth into a small space.

But pound for pound, the Reverend Nord Bence may have put less fact, less logic and less truth into this press release than any single document in Minnesota history.  It makes Minnesota Progressive Project look like Brittanica.  It’s that bad.

First, Some Background:   Remember what a cesspool of violence Minnesota was in 1973?  When all those otherwise normal, workadaddy, hugamommy people got their hands on guns and, unimpinged by the law, ran out and started killing people?

No?

That’s right.  That’s because it didn’t happen.

And yet, one did not require a permit to carry a firearm, openly or concealed, in Minnesota.  Minnesota didn’t introduce carry permits – the loathsome “May Issue” system the good guys euthanized in 2003 – until 1974.

Which was not long before we started having crime problems in Minnesota.  But correlation doesn’t equal causation.

Next, The Cold Dry Facts:  House File 188, if passed, will allow any citizen who is legally entitled to own and carry firearms to carry them anywhere they’re legally allowed to.  They couldn’t carry them where they’re not legally allowed to – federal facilities, courthouses, schools and places where they’re asked by property owners not to carry.  People who are not legally entitled to carry firearms, due to criminal record or other disqualifying factors, would not.

In other words, law-abiding citizens could exercise their rights without asking government for permission.  Just like their rights to speak, publish, worship, assemble and all the rest.

Exactly as they could before 1974.

Like The Truth, Only The Complete Opposite:  The release starts off with a bang; as caustically cynical a lie as I’ve ever read in print, and I say that neither lightly nor hyperbolically:

The permitless carry bill (HF0188) would invalidate all state laws regarding carrying or possessing weapons in public and authorize anyone to carry a gun without a permit.

This is a lie.

The same people who can’t carry a gun today, can’t carry one under the Constitutional Carry bill. Full stop. Don’t be an idiot.

Anyone who is not entitled to own or carry firearms in Minnesota, will be forbidden to carry guns in Minnesota.

People with felony records?  No carrying for you!

People with many misdemeanor domestic assault violations?  Nope!  Don’t even ask, Chachi!  You’re out!

People who have been determined unable to own firearms, after actual due process?  Nope.  They won’t be able to carry firearms.  At all.  Period.  End of sentence.

And it won’t invalidate law about carrying or handling guns responsibly, in public or private.  The onus will be on the law-abiding gun owner to, well, be law-abiding.

Just as they are today.

Nord Bence actually flirts with fact for a moment:

If this bill were to pass, a permit would be “optional.”

Not if one wished to travel to a state that requires permits.  I’m fairly certain Nord Bence doesn’t know this, which I’ll speculate is why she used the scare quotes.

Unchecked!:  Nord Bence carries on:

Shotguns, rifles, even semi-automatic assault weapons could be carried openly by anyone, without so much as a background check.

Again, untrue

Let’s be honest; the only “background check” that matters is the one the police run when they pull you over.

The federal laws about getting background checks on handguns and “semiautomatic assault weapons” remain unchanged.

Current state laws about rifles and long-barreled shotguns remain unchanged – they need not be registered (and are used in crimes about as often as “Protect” Minnesota says something factual; being long arms, they tend to be a little conspicuous for street crime, and a little inconvenient for crimes of passion).

Which is not to say that people who commit mayhem don’t carry guns.  Clearly, they do.  They just never, ever pay the state $100 and take a background check to do it – because most of the ones who end up committing mayhem with guns couldn’t pass one anyway.

Reverend Non-Sequitur:  Up next, she descends into absurdity (with emphasis added by me):

This bill would prevent local law enforcement from fulfilling their sworn duty to protect the communities they serve. Currently those who want carry permits need to undergo a background check and be approved by law enforcement. According to BCA reports1, between 2005 and 2015, 3,800 Minnesotans were denied the right to carry through this process because of prior violent felony convictions, domestic violence, drug use, violence against police officers, repeated DUI’s, and previous suicidal threats. If the permitless carry bill were to pass today, those 3,800 dangerous individuals would be able to start carrying guns tomorrow.

Uh, no.

If you can’t carry a gun now, the bill won’t change anything. At all.

No, they can not.

People who have violent felony records, and some domestic convictions, can not own, or possess, or be in the same room as, firearms.  Forget about carrying them.    According to several levels of law, state and federal.

People with other behavior – alcohol abuse, drug abuse, violent mental illness – that would otherwise deprive them of the ability to pass a background check, can and do currently have their right to carry – or for that matter, own – guns abridged after due process.

I’ll take the Reverend Nord Bence and her ilk seriously – more seriously than they deserve – for a moment, here; they are of the opinion that making the law-abiding gun owner jump through procedural and financial hoops makes society safer.

It’s a common misconception.

We’ll come back to that tomorrow.


  • Yesterday:  Game On!
  • Today: Data, Data Everywhere!
  • Wednesday:  That Golden Ticket
  • Thursday:  I Don’t Think That Word Means What The Rev. Nancy Nord Bence Thinks It Means
  • Friday:  Everyone With ELCA Hair Looks The Same

The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight: Game On!

In 1987, as a bill that would require the state to issue handgun carry permits to citizens who were not explicitly barred from having them passed a vote in the Florida state legislature, state senator Ron Silver predicted blood in the streets, and said the state would turn into Dodge City.

Silver, being a Democrat of some integrity, admitted several years later he was completely wrong, and that the law was an untrammeled success.

In 2003,  Senator Wes “Lying Sack of Garbage” Skoglund, during the debate on the Minnesota Personal Protection Act (which also instituted “Shall Issue”), said that the law would “allow gang members to get carry permits”.   Which would, I suppose, be true, if you found a gang-banger who was 21 years old and had a clean criminal record, in which case the term you’d be look for is “citizen”.  Anyway – it hasn’t happened.  In 14 years, carry permittees have killed perhaps a half dozen people; in every case but one, it’s been ruled justifiable (and the one exception was someone who shouldn’t have gotten a permit to begin with).

In sort, it wouldn’t be a gun control debate without someone claiming the sky would fall if the law-abiding citizen were able to exercise his or her rights – and a slow walk back five years later as the predictions turned out to be universally false. .

Speaking of universally false, The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence is in the news!  And it almost reads too pat to be good fiction that she does it with a press release that ends with:

We cannot allow the gun-rights fringe to divide our communities, put police at risk, and turn our friendly and forward-looking state into…

Wait for it…

One wonders if she even realizes that the “OK Corral” analogy undercuts her point?

Wait for it…

…the OK Corral.

It never, ever fails, does it?

The Game, It Is On:  Last week, two bills were introduced in the Minnesota state legislature:

  • HF 188, which if enacted would allow any Minnesotan who is not  prohibited from having firearms to carry a firearm without needing to pay for and carry a state permit.  It’s based on the idea that law-abiding citizens shouldn’t have to pay for a state permit to exercise that right.
  • HF 238, which would reform self-defense law by removing the arbitrary and subjective “duty to retreat” from the law on self-defense, as well as codifying the law-abiding citizen’s rights to defend their domicile and property.

In response, “Protect” Minnesota – a group that has for over a decade provided comic relief to Minnesota’s Second Amendment debate  – released a press release on the bills.

They released it at 7:30 PM.  On a Friday night.  The time when most politicians in the know release damaging information – because it’ll be forgotten about by Monday.

And they tried to make up for bad timing with pure volume; unlike most such political press releases, it’s as long as a a Madonna speech, and about as coherent.

The piece isn’t just groaningly, flatulently long; it’s so full of falsehoods – through malice or through incompetence, it matters not – that it really leaves only two possibilities; they really are that badly informed, or they assume that the public is and want to help keep them that way.

At any rate, it’s so bad, I am actually going to break it up into four parts over the rest of the week:

  • Tomorrow: Data, Data Everywhere!
  • Wednesday:  That Golden Ticket
  • Thursday:  I Don’t Think That Word Means What The Rev. Nancy Nord Bence Thinks It Means
  • Friday:  Everyone With ELCA Hair Looks The Same

So tune in every day over lunch for something that “Protect” Minnesota won’t give you; facts.  And the truth.

Lie First, Lie Always: Non-Sequitur Violence

My theory:  the Democrats, and left-leaning groups in general, are turning their focus to making big, broad, platitudinous statements designed to sound good to people who don’t really think about issues all that hard.

Last week was a case in point; the Strib was pimping a piece purporting to show the costs of “gun violence”, as well as some proposed “solutions”.

The piece – an “analytical report” by Americans for Responsible Solutions, which is the Gabby Giffords checkbook advocacy group – claims to run down the costs of “gun violence”.

And it starts off with a local example:

One recent tragedy at a small law firm in the Cathedral Hill area of St. Paul illustrates this all too well. On April 7, 2016, a disgruntled former client, Ryan David Petersen, entered the offices of North Star Criminal Defense, located on the second floor of the historic Dacotah Building, intending to kill either Dan Adkins, one of the firm’s managing partners, or Chase Passauer, the firm’s office manager. Petersen arrived at the office before Dan did and directed his focus on Chase—shooting him eight times with a .40 caliber handgun. The 23-year-old died in his office chair.3 Chase, a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota, had wanted to become a lawyer to help others before his life was cut short by…

Let’s stop right there.

Who killed Chase Passauer?  Was Ryan Peterson:

  1. A pedestrian who found a loaded gun unattended on the street, and stopped into the law office to seek help?
  2. A Quaker missionary who found himself drawn to a gun at Cabela’s and, hypnotized by its dangerous allure, decided he just had to kill someone?
  3. A DFL activist practicing for the post-Trump revolution?

We’ll come back to that.

Wait!  You Ignored Change Under Bus Seats!:  The report goes into some depth on the costs of single incidents of “gun violence” – noting that the medical costs of even a single episode of “gun violence” are astronomical; the average cost of a fatal shooting is over $40K; of non-fatal shootings, over $60,000.

Well, yeah – the cost of healthcare is pretty high for everyone.   It’s been in all the papers.

It also notes that the cost of investigating the crimes, trying to cases, and incarcerating offenders is way, way up there:

According to estimates by PIRE, the average cost of a police  investigation and related criminal justice expenses for a  fatal shooting is $439,217.13 Criminal justice expenses include salaries and benefits for public officials such as judges, prosecutors, and public defenders, as well as the cost of incarceration, which in a federal facility averages more than $30,000 per year for each inmate.14 Minnesota taxpayers  spend approximately $45,688 per year incarcerating each inmate in state prisons

Yep.  Lawyers, judges and prisons don’t come cheap.

So the alternative is…what?

Does harassing the law-abiding gun owner in any way address this?  Other than creating more felons?

The report also goes through costs to employers – like Mr. Passauer’s – as well as, incredibly, lost wages.  Not only those of the victim…:

According to data derived from the PIRE cost of injury model, the average value of lost work for a single fatal shooting is $1,742,722, while for a nonfatal shooting requiring hospitalization, the figure is $81,559.
When a gunshot victim…

…but also the perp:

…or incarcerated perpetrator is an income earner for his or her family—especially the primary breadwinner—the impact of lost wages on the family can be severe.

Ah.  Clearly the answer is to not send murderers to jail.

Well, no.  That’s not what the report suggests.

Where Have We Seen This?:  The report does suggest “solutions”.

Any guesses?

The Economic Cost of Gun Violence in Minnesota identifies three sets of solutions, each addressing a specific risk factor:  universal background checks for gun sales, neighborhood revitalization programs, and hospital-based violence intervention strategies. The investment required to implement these lifesaving solutions is minuscule compared to the yearly cost of gun violence in our state.

“Hospital based violence intervention strategies” – trying to talk victims and perpetrators out of lives of violence – might be less stupid.  As the report rather un-PC-ly notes:

 “Interpersonal shootings disproportionately involve young men of color living in underserved neighborhoods, so any effective violence intervention strategy must focus attention on this at-risk population.

…where “underserved neighborhoods” is PC code for “crime-ridden cesspool in a city ruined by decades of Democrat rule”, dealing with those actually involved in the vast majority of criminal shootings might actually make sense.

On the other hand, we’ve been trying “neighborhood revitalization” for decades.  It turns out that prosperity – organic, market prosperity, not government subsidy – and law and order, and lots of both, is the only real neighborhood revitalization program that works – and that doesn’t happen in inner cities run by Democrats.

Ever.

Of course, that could happen.

But as to “universal background checks?”

I’d love to ask the people who wrote this report:  “So tell me how the people who are committing the vast majority of the crime today – who overwhelmingly use guns that are stolen, purchased by straw buyers, or, in the world of gangs, often shared among gang members in multiple crimes – who aren’t currently getting background checks, are supposed to start getting them?

Which takes us back to Chase Passauer.

A Minor Technicality:  In re the murder of Mr. Passauer, the report notes that Ryan Peterson was, in fact…

a convicted felon who was legally  prohibited from possessing a gun.

Who would not have taken a background check.

Whether his neighborhood was revitalized, and whether a social worker talked with him at a hospital, or not.

Lie First, Lie Always: Ninnies Gonna Ninny

Guns are a public health crisis.

Not the way anti-gun advocates claim they are, of course; gun deaths are down 50% in twenty years, and further still in places with more guns (not so much in Democrat-addled urban cesspools).  If cancer or heart disease deaths had dropped 50% in twenty years, “public health” advocates would declare a miracle.

But there is a public health problem related to guns.

It’s the mental health of uninformed, emotionally-supercharged gun haters that would seem to be the crisis.

The Bryght:  Bryan Strawser runs Bryghtpath, LLC – a business consulting firm that works with corporations on disaster preparedness, recovery, communications and security.   Strawser is also a leader of the MInnesota Gun Owners Political Action Committee – which gets involved in political campaigns – and the Minnesota Gun Owners’ Caucus, which lobbies the legislature (along with the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance).  It’s a good business.

His company has an office in the Northrup King Building (NKB) complex – a 100-year-old group of warehouse and light-manufacturing buildings that were turned into offices a while back, when Northeast became hip again.  The complex rents to a number of businesses – and a warren of artists, who keep their studios in the shabby-chic-yet-affordable space the NKB offers.  The complex is not an arts collective – it’s a bit of commercial real estate – but with nearly 200 artists, studios, and small galleries, the NKB is one of the lynchpins of Northeast’s art scene.

Strawser briefly listed the Coalition and the PAC alongside Bryghtpath on his office mailbox.  He also allowed a friend (a mutual friend, as it happens) to use the space to conduct a few carry permit classes (which, for those who haven’t been, consist of lectures and Powerpoints; the actual guns used for qualification are used at the firing range).

Anyway – Strawser has run his business out of that space for a little over a year now.

Along the way, a few of the artists who rent space took notice of Strawser’s affiliations, and took umbrage.  Strawser, being a communications guy, dealt with the issue the way he usually does; inviting people down to his office to talk.  Many of them did.  Conversations were had, agreements to disagree were reached, nerves were salved to the point where Strawser and a few of his artist neighbors threw an open house to discuss the issue with the rest of the building.

And that shoulda been it.  Right?

Not Bryght:   Please.  This is Minneapolis.  A city that elects Alondra Cano to office.

Howard Christopherson is an artist in the NKB; in addition to building picture frames, he runs one of the many small studio/gallery spaces that the NKB hosts.

And last summer, he started casting aspersions about Strawser on the building’s tenant page, as well as his own Facebook account.

And he was displeased:

For 13+ years I have proudly described this building as a great place. A giant Art Building, filled with artists, creators, furniture makers and sellers along with jewelers, painters and photographers etc. I guess we now add Pro Gun People who will for some money, teach you how to conceal and carry and they will lobby the St. Paul Capital to keep the gun pipeline flowing and easy to obtain.
I am disappointed, confused and dismayed that a Gun Proponant has a studio in the same building.

And, social media being what it is, a few of the building’s other artists started kibitzing amongst themselves.

Around this time, the building’s management pointed out the obvious; Strawser was a law-abiding person, running a perfectly legal business, doing something he had every legal right and qualification to do.  Not only that, but he’d agreed to keep all carry permit training out of the building.

Not good enough for Christopherson who, to protest against the indignity of sharing a building with people who saw the world differently than he, decided to fight back with the only weapon he had; to deprive the world of his deathless and eternal art.  He sent out a mass email to his list promising to refrain from displaying during any of the building’s constant stream of arts events.  One other building tenant, Sharra Frank, has apparently opted to break her lease because of Strawser – after spurning with Victorian theatricality Strawser’s offer to sit down and discuss.

And that’s where things sat for a while.

Layers and Layers of Gatekeepers:  Enter Sheila Regan, the “arts” “reporter” for the City Pages and fairly well-known left-wing activist in the Twin Cities (including, according to some reports, a member of an anti-gun organization – something a real journalist might have felt the need to disclose in reporting this sort of story).

She  took a statement from Strawser.  (I can’t speak for Bryan, but I know that when dealing with today’s City Pages, I’d never consent to a verbal interview without recorders rolling.  I’d prefer to do it entirely in writing; that way there’s a paper trail to correct the inevitable inflammatory inaccuracies.  Of which there were plenty; the online story went through three rounds of corrections as Regan repeatedly referred to Strawser as a “lobbyist”.  He’s not).

She did, however, end the story with a charming little editorial coda; she posted this bit of “art” (I prefer the term “artiness”, but nobody asked me):

screen-shot-2016-10-11-at-11-08-36-am

It’s “Journalism” AND “Art!”   It’s called “NRA Aphrodisiac”, 2015 Tom Quinn Kumpf, “Love in 2016.”

Speaking of public health crises – why is it that antis are so obsessed with shooters’ genitals, sexuality and bodily fluids?

Oh, yeah – it’s just another way that bullies try to shame dissidents; by sexualizing the non-sexual; a simultaneous deflection into meaninglessness and an attempt to humiliate.  It’s the visual version of what Donald Trump said, and Bill Clinton did.  It’s a stupid person’s substitute for knowing things.  It’s why anti-gunners love to fall back on tropes like “shooters are compensating for something”, and “gun fondler” – because it’s easier than knowing what you’re talking about.

And, given how prevalent the left uses it as a substitute for knowing anything about the subject, it may be another one of those public health crises we’re talking about.

Heroes Are Hard To Find: Anyway, Regan apparently interviewed Christopherson, and Christopherson gave his side of the story.  And in so doing, while wrapping himself in the “peace” label that artists supposedly spend their creative lives marinading in 1, let slip some interesting factoids (emphasis added):

Christopherson says his vocal opposition to Strawser being in the building was instinctual. Many of his heroes have been shot or killed by guns, including his father (in WWII), President Kennedy and Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., John Lennon, Che Guevara, and Dian Fossey. He also lost his brother, Jimmy, and his good friend Eduardo Blidner recently to gun suicide.

Mr. Christopherson:  you can not simultaneously wrap yourself in “peace” and lionize Che Guevara, a racist, homophobic, totalitarian mass killer.   Sorry about your father and brother, but it wasn’t a “gun” that killed either of them; it was an enemy soldier and a mental illness.

Robert Kennedy and John Lennon were murdered in a place where civilian guns are illegal.  And not to nitpick – that’d be kinda ghoulish – but Dian Fossey was not shot; she was bludgeoned to death.  

The other tenant, Sharra Frank, also had a complaint (again, I’ve added emphasis):

Around that time, Frank had been helping to arrange a field trip for her son’s school, where they would tour the Northrup King building. “When I discovered this tenant was there, I felt so conflicted,” she says. “I thought this was such a family-friendly safe space.”

When she brought her concerns to the manager regarding whether guns were allowed in the building, she learned that by state law, landlords can’t restrict their tenants from having guns or carrying guns in a space.

So Frank decided to leave. “I know I can’t invite people into a space where I’m hiding info that might make them uncomfortable,” she says. She adds that she doesn’t feel safe bringing in youth and people from marginalized communities into the building. “Also, I didn’t feel I could creatively make work because I would feel distracted.”

So many questions, Ms. Frank.

Since when are artists “family friendly?”   I love artists – I am an artist, for chrissake, and most of my family two generations before and after me are to one degree or another too – but I will scout out any gallery before I bring kids inside.  Some of those folks are seriously twisted.

“Youth”, who grow up playing “Red Dead Redemption” and “Grand Theft Auto”, will be distracted by a genial, law-abiding guy sitting in an office, believing different things than you do?  Do tell.

And “marginalized youth” are in plenty of danger from guns…

…owned and carried illegally by the people in their communities who are doing the marginalizing.

And if demonstrably law-abiding people doing legal things in a legal way that is a minimum of two orders of magnitude less likely to get you hurt than the general public makes you and your clients uncomfortable – well, I think I found our “public health crisis”.

So Where Are We Now?:  Mr. Christopherson is apparently still mortified that someone in his building is doing a legal thing he’s allowed to do, and, operating under the assumption that the Northrup King building is an arts collective (it’s not), mobilize a campaign of shaming and bullying against someone…doing perfectly legal stuff that makes him unconmfortable for utterly irrational reasons.

Ms. Frank has apparently broken her lease.  Since space in the NKB is both inexpensive and in immense demand, I’m sure that’ll work out well for her.

Both would seem to have turned Bryan Strawser’s presence in “their” building into a neurotic obsession, which they’re manfesting in bullying, shaming and gaslighting, apparently seeking the thing that all “artists” seek; absolute ideological and personal conformity. 2

So all you gun-grabbers who jabber on about guns being a “public health crisis”?  You’re right.

Oh, yeah – Bryan Strawser continues to be a law-abiding citizen doing things he’s legally entitled to do.  No trail of bodies seems to have ensued from this.

Sheila Regan still hasn’t disclosed her political bent in covering the story.

Stay tuned.

UPDATE:  Join the backlash!  If you’re an artist – or just value freedom – “like” “Artists for the Second Amendment” on Facebook.

Continue reading

Lie First, Lie Always: Authoritarians For “Liberty”

One of the things that always annoyed me about the Libertarian Party was its’ members predilection for purity-testing each other to a fine sheen, to the point where nobody could ever really get supported for anything.

The good news?  Apparently they’re not doing that anymore.

The bad news?  We know this because they’ve apparently endorsed a non-Libertarian for office.

Democrat “Libertarian” Veep nominee Bill Weld is as clueless about firearms as any NPR reporter.

The “clueless” is so strong, I won’t bother fisking it.  I’ll just let the statement sit in its full glory, and wait ’til the footnotes:

“The five-shot rifle, that’s a standard military rifle; 1 the problem is if you attach a clip to it so it can fire more shells and if you remove the pin so that it becomes an automatic weapon, 2 and those are independent criminal offenses, 3” Weld said. “That is when they become, essentially a weapon of mass destruction. 4 The problem with handguns probably is even worse than the problem of the AR15.” 5

Weld also said he believed no one on a terrorist watch list should be allowed to purchase guns, even though, as the Huffington Post pointed out, it isn’t too hard for an innocent person to end up on the list.

Indeed, that’s the point – which Weld would know, if he were a Libertarian.

Footnotes:

1:  The “standard military rifle” hasn’t been “five shots” since about 1942.

2: If you “remove the pin”, it becomes a club.

3: No, it becomes zero offenses; adding a larger magazine isn’t a crime (except in places like DC, Chicago, California and Massachusetts (unless you’re Brian Gregory)), and “taking out the pin” is called “Field stripping and cleaning”.  Converting a gun to full automatic is a federal felony – but Weld is not curious enough to know that’s practically impossible with a garden-variety AR15.  Not that I’d know, because guns scare me.

4:  No, they do not become nuclear, biological, chemical or high-explosive weapons.  They become rifles that are easy to use, don’t jam, and don’t run out of bullets before the bad guy runs out of attack.

5:  Well, duh.  Handguns kill two orders of magnitude more people than “assault weapons”.  Or, put correctly, criminals use handguns to murder two orders of magnitude more people – disproportionally brown or black, most of them in Democrat cities.

Lie First, Lie Always: I’m Shocked. Shocked, I Tell You

“Why are you gun fondlers so paranoid”, the snarky but uninformed “gun safety” parrots chant in smug unison.  “Why do you oppose universal background checks?”

“It’s ‘Human Rights Activist’, you closet commie” I gently correct them.  “And it’s because while the same criminals who aren’t going through background checks now aren’t going to start when they become ‘universal’, it will be used to compile a list of gun owners”.

“Pshaw”, they say, which surprises me, since I haven’t heard the word “pshaw” since I watched a Ma and Pa Kettle short when I was a little kid.  “That’s just paranoid”.

And I respond “As usual, at best, you’re uninformed, and at worst, you’re lying“.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), the go-to federal oversight agency, conducted an audit of ATF and found it does not remove certain identifiable information, despite the law explicitly mandating it do so. GAO conducted reviews for four data systems, and concluded at least two of ATF’s systems violated official protocols.

One of the data-collecting systems called Multiple Sales (MS) requires that multiple firearms purchased at once must be reported to ATF by the federal firearms licensee (FFL). ATF policy requires that the bureau internally removes particular data from multiple gun sales reports after two years if the firearm has not been traced to criminal activity. GAO found that ATF does not adhere to its own policy. In fact, “until May 2016, MS contained over 10,000 names that were not consistently deleted within the required 2 years.”

Every bit of information you give government gives government an opportunity to use it against you.

Lie First, Lie Always: Our Loathsome Fellow Citizens

“The tree of liberty must be watered from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants”.
— Often attributed to Thomas Jefferson, possibly apocryphally.

Deterrence:  America is the result of a revolution – not an ideological or market revolution, but a military revolt against what the colonists (or at least the ones who ended up winning) considered a hostile occupying power.

Whether or not the Second Amendment was specifically intended to allow Americans to rebel against a future tyranny is the subject of any number of debates by both the informed and the less-so; in the seminal Yale Law Review article “The Embarassing Second Amendment”, Sanford Levinson notes that in Professor T. Cooley’s ” T. Cooley, The General Principles of Constitutional Law in The United States of America 298 (3d ed. 1898), that the thinking among scholars in the nineteenth century was “Should the contingency ever arise when it would be necessary for the people to make use of the arms in their hands for the protection of constitutional liberty, the proceeding, so far from being revolutionary, would be in strict accord with popular right and duty.”

The notion that The People have a right to rebel against a government that becomes unjust and tyrannical is instituted in a number of state constitutions:  New Hampshire, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, North Carolina and most notably Texas all consider the right to rebel important enough to bake into the foundation of their state government.

Beyond that?  The constitutions of Germany, Greece, and the Czech and Slovak Republics – all of whom have experience with real live tyranny within living memory – all recognize a human right to fight against tyranny.

And if that’s not enough for you?  That noted favorite of conservatives, the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights declares:

Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by rule of law.

Which is an oblique way of recognizing the justice of armed uprising against tyrants.

So it’s not like the idea that free people have the right to remain free, even if they have to convince their idiot government to stay that way, is a product of the American lunatic fringe.

Of course, rebellion against a civil government is a daunting task, not for the faint of heart.  And it’s certainly not to be undertaken trivially.   To paraphrase the computer in War Games, the only way to “win” a rebellion is to never really have to fight it with force of arms.

Fortunately, our founding fathers were smart enough to enact a little poison pill to deter tyranny.

The Second Amendment.

The idea, and ideal, being that a government that knew a lapse into tyranny could be answered by an armed, motivated people, was built into the Constitution, not a battle plan for future citizens, but as a deterrent to anyone with bright ideas of squashing the rest of the freedoms granted us all by our creator.

And so far it – the deterrent – has worked.

Useless Idiots:  The National Rifle Association, since its rise as a political organization forty years ago, has embraced the idea that the Second Amendment deters tyranny.

And key to any deterrent is the certain knowledge among those to be deterred that the threat is not idle.   If you buy a pit bull to guard your house, but advertise that he’s always muzzled, meaning his bark will be all the dog has going for him?  His value as a deterrent is limited.

So the NRA – like most gun-owning, politically-active Americans – is not slavering away for an armed revolt.  War is, as Sherman said, hell.  It hurts people and breaks things.

Long story short:  deterrence.  Not war.

Someone needs to tell it to the precious snowflake who wrote this excrescent bit of bile for the HuffPo:

 The gun lobby has long preached armed insurrectionism as a panacea for those facing oppression.

The “writer” – one Ladd Everett, director of some fragrant non-profit -states this repeatedly as settled fact.   The conflates “deterrence” with “wishing for violence”.  It’s dishonest…

…but it’s the gun control movement we’re talking about here; “dishonesty” is “dog licks dog”.

When Micah Xavier Johnson opened fire on Dallas law enforcement officers during a Black Lives Matter protest on Thursday night, killing five and injuring seven others, he was fighting what he perceived as government oppression with a method that has long been advocated by the National Rifle Association and gun lobby: force of arms.

Let me see if I can get this straight:

  • When a “Black Lives Matter” protest chants “Pigs like bacon, fry ’em in a pan”, theatrically threatening death to cops,  it’s the organic rhetorical uprising of the black community.
  • But when one of them actually does it, it’s the NRA’s fault?

It doesn’t really add up.

The NRA has long disseminated propaganda telling African-Americans that gun control is “racist” and that they must prepare for war with their own government in order to truly be free. For example, current NRA board member (and past president) David Keene has claimed that “the initial wave of [gun control] was instituted after the Civil War to deny blacks the ability to defend themselves.”

Keene claimed it – because it’s true.  After the Civil War, Klan-dominated southern governments tried to bar black freedmen from having guns; they were shooting up too many Klan attacks.  It helped lead to the “Equal Protection” clause of the 14th Amendment.

In 2013, NRA favorite Glenn Beck was the featured speaker at their annual meeting, where he told those in attendance that “universal access to firearms is indistinguishable from Emancipation.”

And while I’m not a huge Beck fan, he was right.  The ability to protect one’s self, property, family, community and democracy is one of the things that distinguishes a citizen – one who actively participates in governing himself and his society – from a subject, a serf, a fyrd, a slave.

If one is not armed, one’s freedom exists only through the beneficence of those who are.

In Dallas, the NRA’s prescription for oppressed minorities was fully realized. According to Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, at least 20 people showed up to the rally on July 7 openly carrying rifles and wearing “protective gear,” making a not so-subtle threat of violence against a government which they believe has overstepped its bounds in terms of policing.

So let’s get this straight; when a group of protesters chants “Pigs are like bacon; fry ’em in a pan!” to indicate to the police that they’re angry enough with police abuse to threaten death, it’s the apogee of free speech.  When one of those same (?) people shows up showing that he has the means, as a free citizen, to make it stick, suddenly it’s wrong?

So “freedom” only matters when it has no consequences?

Micah Xavier Johnson then made good on that threat, destroying at least six families in the process.

Well, no.  The open-carriers threatened nobody.  They exercised their constitutional and legal rights.  Micah Jackson violated the rights of others – of a whole city – in the most profound way possible, by doing something none of the other shooters did.

Of course, getting the distintion would imply that Ladd Everett “gets” civil rights.

He doesn’t.  He is a propaganda mouthpiece.

How do I know?  This next bit is the tell:

Let’s keep in mind that there is nothing principled about the NRA’s call for black Americans to arm themselves. For them, it is entirely about profit motive. They understand that fear sells guns, and they have intimate financial ties to the gun industry. Their priority is to push product.

The whole “NRA is about profit” line showcases the gun controllers’ logical vacuity.    Americans have been armed well enough to deter tyranny since our founding.  Americans have had a (legtimate) disdain for tyranny since before even that.    That is the status quo, among Americans who actually think about the nature of government and man (who are fairly common between the Hudson and the Sierra Madre, though vanishingly rare outside those borders).

The “fear” – that the status quo will be changed – which drives the current astronomical gun sales and three-shift gun production is entirely a product of the left’s eliminationist hysteria about guns.

So you will likely continue to see insurrectionist appeals and transparent efforts to market firearms to urban youth like the NRA’s “Noir” show.

Aaaaand the racism.

The NRA makes no more “insurrectionist appeal” than do six state and four national Constitutions, and the United Nations.

It’s the people for whom Ladd Everett is a useful idiot that are prone to the violence.

Lie First, Lie Always: Audio Carnage

Andrew Rothman of the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance was apparently on WCCO yesterday.  “Protect” MN put out an email blast for its badly-informed chanting point bots to call in – which I doubt worked especially well.

StraightOuttaFacts

I was extraordinarily busy over the weekend, so I didn’t get a chance to listen.

But “Protect” MN’s email blasts are always low entertainment (emphasis added):

Dear Heinrich

Mr. Rothman is one of the most vorciferous

advocates for the gun lobby in our state.

And Nancy Nord Bence is one of the most vociferously bad spellers in Minnesota public life.

He makes his living teaching Permit to Carry classes and representing the most extreme views of the NRA at the Capital

No.  No, he does not.  He earns his living in a day job like the rest of us.

This is the level of accuracy one expects from “Protect” MN.

I may just listen to the podcast for the carnage.