Up From Zero

As I’ve pointed out in the past, “Protect” Minnesota and their director, the “Reverend” Nancy Nord Bence, have never made an assertion about guns, gun owners, gun laws, gun crime, gun statistics, the Second Amendment or its history that is simultaneously:

  • Original
  • Substantial, and
  • True.

You might get two out of three, sometimes.

This next howler?:

The “Reverend” makes three assertions. In reverse order:

Banks stopped using armed guards because they were being targeted: The “Reverend”, or someone she read, apparently thinks people rob banks for the same reason they climb mountains or skydive – to surmount a challenge, to defeat an obstacle.

It’s baked monkey doodle, of course. Banks found that it was cheaper to give bank robbers “bait” money than to resist them, in terms of civil liability.

School shooters, being “suicidal” and wanting to go out in a blaze of glory, would jump at the chance to attack a harder target: Which explains how many mass shooters go straight for the nearby cops when they launch their attacks.

Wait, what? That never happens?

The “Reverend” is making things up again.

While death is part of some spree killers’ fantasy narrative, it only comes after killing as many people as they can first.

If the “Reverend” can show us a single example of a spree killer specifically picking out an armed target, I’m all ears. I’ll wait.

And wait.

And wait.

Allowing teachers and staff to carry firearms would increase the number of shootings, thefts and accidental discharges: Here, the “Reverend” actually comes close to making a point. It’s possible that this could increase the number and rate of incidents.

Because when you’re at “Zero”, anything is an increase. And out of the thousand school districts that allow staff to exercise their Second Amendment rights to defend themselves and their charges, that’s how many incidents there have been in the past twenty years:

After the Columbine school shooting 20 years ago, one of the more significant changes in how we protect students has been the advance of legislation that allows teachers to carry guns at schools. There are two obvious questions: Does letting teachers carry create dangers? Might they deter attackers? Twenty states currently allow teachers and staff to carry guns to varying degrees on school property, so we don’t need to guess how the policy would work. There has yet to be a single case of someone being wounded or killed from a shooting, let alone a mass public shooting, between 6 AM and midnight at a school that lets teachers carry guns.

And how about accidents, or boistrous or larcenous students stealing teachers’ guns?

Again:

Fears of teachers carrying guns in terms of such problems as students obtaining teachers guns have not occurred at all, and there was only one accidental discharge outside of school hours with no one was really harmed. While there have not been any problems at schools with armed teachers, the number of people killed at other schools has increased significantly – doubling between 2001 and 2008 versus 2009 and 2018.

So, technically, the “Reverend” had a point, here – since in 20 years in 20 states there have been no incidents – none, zero, nada, nichevo – then the first incident would, literally, be an increase. And in a nation of millions, bad things happen. They’re inevitable.

But with a very significant sample, over a significant time span, we’re still waiting. Knock wood.

So The Final Score…: But we don’t give points for techical correctness, since it was in the furtherance of a lie.

So out of a potential three points for her statement being original, substantial and true, the “Reverend” rates…:

Every Time You Read Nancy Nord Bence, You Get A Little Dumber

First things first:  Kenneth Lilly, the security guard alleged to have shot the bus driver on 35W the other day, has been charged with attempted murder, among other things.  

And it’s seem, from watching the video, to be a fair cop.  To use a gun in self-defense – we’ve been through this before – you need to satisfy four criteria in the state of Minnesota:

  1. You can’t be the aggressor.
  2. You must reasonably fear immediate death or great bodily harm. 
  3. You must only use the force necessary to end the threat. 
  4. You must make a reasonable effort to retreat.  

You need to satisfy all four of those criteria (unless you’re in your house, in which case only “only” need to check off the first three.  

This will be for a jury (or, more likely than not, the defendant, his lawyer and the judge) to decide – but it looks like Lilly blew 1, 2 and 4 completely.   

Of course, those who get their “information” from local gun-grab scolds “Protect” Minnesota will get a version of events that would make Baghdad Bob wince with Schadenfreud

 

Where to start with this – words fail me – horsecrap?

“I’m afraid I might get killed, now” is a part of every legitimate self-defense claim. No exceptions! It has nothing to do with “Stand your Ground”, which – thanks for nothing, Governor Goofy – is not the law in Minnesota anyway.

But the law doesn’t require that you “feel afraid”. The law requires that you “reasonably” fear death or great bodily harm – and by “reasonable”, we mean “an investigator, prosecutor, judge or jury believes it”.

Invoking “stand your ground” means either the writer – almost certainly the invincibly ignorant Reverend Nord Bence – doesn’t know what she’s talking about, or she doesn’t really think it matters if her audience doesn’t get the truth or, and this is my bet, both.  

It’s almost a Berg’s Law.

Nancying The News

The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence had a red-letter day yesterday. 

And by “Red Letter Day”, we mean “a day where she passed on more lies and ignorance than normal”. 

In fact, today is going to be a rare Bence Bifecta.

Remember – “Protect” Minnesota and its leadership have never, not once, made a statement about guns, gun owners, gun history, gun laws or the Second Amendment that is simultaneously:

  • Original
  • Substantial
  • True

You may get one out of three. Sometimes two. Never three.

But this? The Reverend Nord Bence gets zero:

Except that if you win a gun at a raffle, you do take a background check.

I’m still amazed that anyone in the media uses her as a source.


Advice

I’ve said it before, and I’m sure I’ll say it at least once a month until “Protect” MInnesota finally gets laughed out of polite company in this state: the local gun grab group and its arious leaders – the “Reverend” Nancy Nord Bence today, Rep. Heather Martens before her – have never, not once, made a single statement about guns, gun owners, gun laws, gun crime, gun history or the use of firearms that is simultaneously

  • Original
  • Substantial
  • True.

You get plenty of statements where one might be the case, and a few with two out of three. But never, not once, have they made or will they hit all three.

Ever.

This meme from last week is different, in that it doesn’t even get one out of three completely correct.

They’re fantasizing:

So let’s make sure the stage is set: you’re in a mass shooting, and the shooting is underway.    “Several people have already been shot”, although the writer doesn’t see fit to mention that you could be one of them very, very shortly, here.

The writer doesn’t know much about exposition.

They know less, naturally, about gun laws: when they write “you pull out your gun and rush off to be a hero”, they apparently think Taken is a documentary. For better or worse, it’s bad legal (and, likely, tactical) form to go rushing to the sound of the guns.

Shooters know this.

The “Reverend” Nancy Nord Bence apparently does not.

Of the four resolutions they list?

The shooter sees you and shoots first: you mean, they do what the shooter will likely get around to doing, anyway, given that they’re a spree killer?

Do they really think the would-be “hero” is any worse off under this scenario?

Another good samaritan shoots you by mistake: That’s right – two good guys with guns, both seeing an active shooter, shoot the wrong person. It could happen, in the same sense that Nancy Nord Bence could make a coherent point. Again – given that one is likely going to get killed by the active shooter – which they seem to keep forgetting – I’m hard-pressed to see how the “heroes” are any worse off than if neither was armed.

Police see you “running around” and shoot you anyway: If the “hero” is “running around”, they’re doing it wrong.

You, the hero, shoot an innocent bystander: It could in theory happen. And if it does, the would-be hero would be in deep trouble, if the spree killer in the room doesn’t kill him first.

Thing is, you can look long and hard and never find an example of this happening, because good guys with guns tend overwhelmingly to do the right thing.  

Indeed, except for the cops shooting the “Hero” (it’s happened), neither I nor, let’s be honest, the “Reverend” Nord Bence can think of any examples of any of those happening – certainly nowhere near as many as the heroes who’ve ended mass shootings.

Apparently the “Reverend” Nord Bence thinks it’s better to die quietly.

Why does the “Reverend” hate innocent victims?

A Good Guy With A Gun – And One Lucky Cop

Arizona man saves a state trooper’s life after an ambush on I-10 following a “shots fired’ radio call that led the officer to a crashed car and a mortally-injured woman:

[Arizona Department of Public Safety director Col. Frank Milstead] said as the trooper began blocking off lanes of traffic and laying out flares, he was ambushed by the suspect.
The suspect shot the trooper in the right shoulder, and was “getting the better of the trooper” in a fight that immediately followed.
Milstead said the suspect was on top of the trooper striking his head on the pavement.
According to Milstead, a man traveling westbound on I-10 with his wife in the car, pulled over to help the trooper.
The man retrieved a gun from his car and fired at the suspect after the suspect refused to stop attacking the trooper, Milstead said.
The suspect died as a result of the shooting and the man called for help using the trooper’s radio, according to Milstead.
In a news conference from the hospital where the trooper is being cared for, Milstead thanked the man who stopped to help.

If Nancy Nord Bence had her way, they’d still be scraping the trooper’s brains off the pavement.

Lie First, Lie Always: An Open Letter To The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence

To:   The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence
From:  Mitch Berg, Irascible Peasant
Re:  Think.  Think Really Really Hard

Rev.  Nord Bence,

Over the weekend, you posted this on “Protect” MN’s Facebook page:

Over the years, I’ve pointed out – with absolute accuracy – that you have never made a single statement about guns, gun owners, gun history, gun laws, the 2nd Amendment or gun crime that was simultaneously substantial, original and true.  

Here’s the good news:   your claims above are substantial, and, er, “original”.  But they are howlers. 

Run Awaaaaaaay:   First – you say “police in Minnesota can already use the Stand Your Ground defense”. 

Well, yeah.  That’s right.  The police don’t have a “duty to retreat” when doing their jobs.   Unlike civilians, they are supposed to run toward trouble.   

They don’t have “Stand your Ground”.   They have “Qualified Immunity” – not only no obligation to try to retreat, but a mulligan for mistakes made in generally good faith in the line of duty. 

Question for you, “Reverend” Nord Bence:  Would you prefer that police also be required to run away from criminals?  

Just curious. 

Shoot Off Your Unqualified Mouth First, As Questions Later:  Next comes the notion that self-defense reform would give citizens “the same right to shoot first and ask questions later” that cops “have”. 

Nope.  It merely means that citizens don’t have to convince a county attorney that they tried hard enough to run away from a threat (that was otherwise a reasonable threat of death or grave injury), provided you were anyplace you had a legal reason to be. 

That’s it.  

It’s not a license to kill. 

And I suspect you know that – and are lying anyway, to logroll the gullible dolts who take you seriously.   

Either that or you are a deeply, deeply stupid person.  

My money says “both”. 

That is all.  

 

Lie First, Lie Always: Nancy Nord Bence’s Unbroken Streak!

It’s not quite a “Berg’s Law”, since it only pertains to a few groups, most particularly “Protect” Minnesota – the voice of the gun control movement in Minnesota – but it’s getting close.

Let be say this as clearly and unequivocally as I can:

“Protect” Minnesota has never made a single statement about guns, gun violence, gun laws, the 2nd Amendment, or law-abiding gun owners that is simultaneously substantial, original and true [1].  

Not one. 

Doesn’t matter if it was Heather Martens, or Nancy Nord Bence, or any of their constantly-rotating stream of lobbyists, lieutenants and creepy hangers-on; it’s still true.

Not one single statement that is simultaneously substantial, original and true. 

Case in point:  their “coverage” of the episode a few weeks ago where a (WHITE!  MIDDLE AGED!) Eden Prairie man got into a scuffle with a bunch of reportedly Somali teens at a gas station.

This was their first response to the story, going back a bit.

Now, I’ve been watching the story as well.  We don’t know much about the story, but we know a few things:

First – the man had no Minnesota carry permit.   Thank goodness.

Second – while the laws about displaying and threatening the use of lethal force are even more vague in Minnesota than the ones about the use of lethal force, it is under some circumstances legal to “brandish” a firearm to make a potential threat go away.    The law – a mixture of vague statute and very specific case law – is muddled and specific; while the juridprudence on the subject might not be designed to be a transfer of wealth from taxpayers to prosecutors, and from people to defense attorneys – but if they had set out to design such a system, it wouldn’t look a lot different.

Third – for purposes of my point, the actual behavior of the “Somali teens” doesn’t matter; they may have been utterly blameless (although groups of teenagers, especially with adolescent boys showing out for the girls, are pretty much always small, demented mobs no matter their ethnicity; given that the news reports mention nothing about their behavior, I’m doing to assume there’s something to hide).  So with that said – the video from Channel 4 seems to show that the man tried to retreat as the group of “teenagers” harried him.

Which means it’s not a “Stand Your Ground” case.

The guy may or may not have reasonably feared for his life and safety, thus possibly justifying brandishing a firearm – that, it seems, will be decided at trial.

Someone needs to tell the howler monkey – likely the gaffe-prone, not-especially-fact-obsessed Nord Bence:

As usual when “P” M makes a statement?   No.  This case wouldn’t be any different at all.

Why?

As we’ve pointed out countless times on this blog, there are four criteria you need to meet under current Minnesota law to use lethal force in self-defense; you have to reasonably  fear immediate death or great bodily harm, you can’t be the aggressor, you can only use the force needed to end the threat, and you have a duty to make a reasonable effort to retreat.

“Stand your ground” merely removes that last clause when you are anyplace you have a legal right to be.  Including McDonalds.

It doesn’t remove the other three criteria!

Was he in immediate life-threatening danger?    Was he the aggressor?  That’ll be decided at trial.

But – let me find the “Bold” button for emphasis:

He retreated!     He backed away from the “teens”!   Was it a “reasonable” effort to do so?  We’ll see what the jury decides.

But “Stand Your Ground” was not, and would never be, an issue in this case.

And if you get your information from “Protect” Minnesota, about this or any other case, you are not only less informed, but you’re participating in making our society dumber on this issue.

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Lie First, Lie Always: Nancy Nord Bence Goes Full-Bore Ghoul (CORRECTION: It Was Erin Maye Quade)

I went to a League of Women Voters’ panel forum on “Gun Violence” in Burnsville last night.

It was actually a fairly even-handed forum; the LWV volunteer who did the initial setup of the topic, “Emily” (didn’t catch the last name) gave an incredibly even-handed presentation on the facts of the “gun debate” – most of which made Reverend Nord Bence visibly hot under the collar, as an even-handed factual appraisal makes her look completely detached from reality.

The forum included Rev.  Nord Bence and soon-to-be former legislator and no-doubt soon-to-be non-profit exec Erin Maye Quade, against Bryan Strawser of the MN Gun Owners Caucus and Rep. Steve Drazkowski of Mazeppa, one of the stronger pro RKBA voters in the legislature.

It went about as expected:   Nord Bence’s record of never having made a statement about guns, gun owners, gun laws, gun facts or gun history that is simultaneously original, substantial and true remains undisturbed.

And she showed the sense of entitlement during the forum, repeatedly interrupting Strawser and Drazkowski, so often and flagrantly that she LWV organizers had to chide her (to a round of audience applause).

But at one point, Bence’s Maye Quade’s bully-girl fabulism collided with her inner ghoul:   when Rep. Drazkowski noted that the best response to a bad guy with a gun was a good guy with a gun,, Bence Maye Quade responded by telling a story about a man who’d responded to a violent attack, and gotten shot for his troubles.

I had to go find  that story    Here it is.    And as usual, it shows that Bence and Maye Quade, like all gun control activists, is lying, wouldn’t know context if it bit them, and are a ghouls to boot.

When police arrived after reports of a shooting over the weekend at a bar outside Chicago, witnesses say Jemel Roberson, a 26-year-old security guard who worked there, had already subdued the alleged assailant, pinning him to the ground.

Adam Harris, who was at Manny’s Blue Bar in Robbins at the time of the incident on Sunday, told WGN-TV that Roberson was holding “somebody on the ground with his knee in his back, with his gun in his back” when officers from neighboring Midlothian got there early Sunday.

Midlothian Police Chief Daniel Delaney said that’s when one of his officers “encountered a subject with a gun” and shot him, according to a statement given to the media.

But the “subject” was Roberson, not the suspect in the bar shooting.

It’s every carry permittee’s worst nightmare – being mistaken for the bad guy when a cop,  arriving at an incident they’ve only heard about on the radio,  under life-or-death stress, decides any gun is a threat and shoots you.

Which happens.

And is vanishingly rare.

And appears not to have even been the issue in this incident – the gun wasn’t Roberson’s so he wasn’t the good guy with the gun; he was the good guy who seized the gun from the actual perp.

For Bence Maye Quade to use this episode to try to impugn the “Good Guy With A Gun” idea is loathsome.  Clearly “shame” is a lot to ask after a career as a serial liar.

I guess we should expect no better for this used car saleswoman in Lutheran minister’s robes.

CORRECTION:  I was wrong.  It was Erin Maye Quade.  Doesn’t change the point.

This Is Minnesota’s Gun Control Movement In Action

Gun control groups don’t care about saving lives.

It’s true in big ways – you will never see a gun control group, or at least not one of the main line, lily white ones like Everytown Julie one of their protest in any American inner city, which is where the vast majority of the “gun violence” actually happens. In fact, you could hear some of their partisans even trying to change the subject back when the topic strange away from school shootings.

So there’s that.

But just to further illustrate the movements depravity – and I use that term with full knowledge of what it actually means – look at this little bit of social media effluvia from “Protect” Minnesota from the other one

I’m not sure if I have ever seen and less responsible posting – even for a bunch of teenagers.

But this should clarify things; the “Gone Safety” movement hasn’t the foggiest thing to do with saving lives. It’s about controlling society.

And it seems I owe Heather Martens an apology. For years I said, not joking in the most remote way, that she had never, not once, made a single original, true, substantial statement about guns, gun owners, gun control, gun history or anything to do with the subject. And that was absolutely true.

But the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence – who replaced Heather as director of “Protect” Minnesota – Adds a little extra twist to the formula; she seems to generally despise human beings. Which seems an odd trade in a Lutheran minister.

I’m Not Saying…

…that gun control activists are stupid.

I am saying they sure hope you’re stupid, and are trying to make you more so

“Protect” MN posted this:

Now, I get that you can’t judge a book by its cover…

…but do you see this guy standing m line at Cabelas filling out his paperwork while waiting for his NICS to come back?

While I strive to remain civil, I’m at a loss to remember a less…cognitively adept public figure than Nancy Nord Bence.

The Juggernaut Strikes

It’s convention time.

Time for groups trying to influence the political process to wield the power of their numbers, finances and organizing skill to benefit the candidate they choose.

For a group with serious power – human, financial or moral – it’s time to apply that power to the endorsement of candidates for key state offices. And the big office at play in this weekend’s state conventions will be Governor.

Pressure groups, grassroots organizers, PACs and lobbies will be judiciously applying their clout to the candidates that seem most closely to track their interests and goals, with the skill and restraint of an eye surgeon operating around an optic nerve (or, in the case of Education Minnesota, a street worker jackhammering a piece of cement).

Which brings us to “Protect” Minnesota.

Yesterday, the criminal-safety group gave its “Orange Star” to gubernatorial candidate and state auditor Rebecca Otto.

The Otto campaign, being led by Rebecca Otto – which has been flailing in the candidate count lately, and which fired its manager last week – no doubt took some encouragement in the vote of confidence. It’s probably the only “good” news the Ottos got last week.

And the Orange Star right before the DFL convention might tend to indicate that the group was playing it a little safe, endorsing a female candidate who is anti-gun – but hasn’t wrapped herself around the issue, either.    That’d be an interesting signal of pragmatism from the group.

Well, until a little bit later – when this came out:

On the veritable eve of the convention, they gave another orange star to CD1 congressman and putative front runner Tim Walz, who has flipped from an “A”-rating from the NRA and the Gun Owners Caucus to being a rabid anti (for purposes of swaying the metro progressives he needs to win the convention, no doubt before flopping before the inevitable primary challenge to try to woo outstate voters, including his gun-owning base in the south of the state.

Still – two coveted orange stars would indicate that “Protect” MN was taking a broad, pragmatic stand against Erin Murphy, who has all but made campaign videos of herself pantomiming going door to door to seize guns; she’s that anti-gun.   It’d be an interesting take on “P”M’s part.

Until a few minutes later, when this arrived in our inboxes:

So – on the eve of the DFL convention, “Protect” MInnesota has basically gotten behind…all the DFLers?

They’ll exercise a keen focus on…everyone?

With such mad political skills, it’s hard to believe Nancy Nord Bence hasn’t taken the state by storm.

 

Ghouls Just Want To Have Fun

Over the Memorial Day weekend “Protect” Minnesota just couldn’t help itself; they had to appropriate a solemn national observance to their mission:

Normally, something like this would end up in me wading into the fever swamp to smack them down.

Especially when you get people like this chiming in:

(Would someone please tell me what the “Right to be Safe” is?   Is it the same as the “Right not to have a car accident?”    There is no such right – merely a responsibility to drive carefully.  There is a responsibility to protect one’s self, family, property and community.  That’s it).

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Nancy Nord Bence Throws In The Towel

The Reverend Nord Bence sent out one of her tl;dr news releases yesterday, including this curious little passage:

There will be no Protect Minnesota protest at the Capitol today.

The pro-gun rights Majority is dug in, no sensible gun bills will be passed today, and we’re not going to give them the satisfaction of smugly walking past our protesters any more this session.

Now, if you’re not Nancy Nord Bence, you might think that today – the last substantive day of legislative activity, when all anti-gun bills have been scrubbed from existence – would be the perfect day to go to the capitol in your ELCA hair and your orange shirt and your waves of uninformed sanctimony and try to gun-shame some people who were elected by a decisive majority of voters.

And you’d be right!

But then this isn’t about Nancy Nord Bence wanting to send a moral message by her/their absence.

No. It’s about this:

Photo courtesy Brian McDaniel.

They rallied on Saturday, when there was still a long shot of getting something passed (had hell frozen over on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon).  Nancy Nord Bence put out a call for warm, uninformed bodies to come to the capitol to shake down the thunder on the legislators.

And that’s what they got.

Nord Bence tried to put a brave face on it:

They’ve made their beds. We will remember. And we’ll spend all summer and fall helping the electorate to remember as well.

Oh, so will I, Nancy.

So will I.

Blowback

The Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus has responded to “Protect” MN’s slanderous Facebook post yesterday:

On Wednesday August 9th, local gun control activist group Protect Minnesota published a statement on their Facebook page implying that the Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus has information on the attack at the Dar Al Farooq Mosque, and was withholding that information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“We are outraged by these libelous, defamatory, and false accusations made by Protect Minnesota, “ said Bryan Strawser, Chair, Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus. “Our organization is committed to the defense of civil rights. This statement and its implications are baseless and offensive. Needless to say, we have no information on this tragic attack.”

“It’s truly unfortunate that at a time when we should be pulling together as a community to condemn terror, Protect Minnesota has chosen to engage in accusations that have no basis in fact and will only serve to distract investigators from swiftly bringing the perpetrator of this heinous act to justice.”

“Sadly, this approach has become the norm under their current leadership, “ added Rob Doar, Vice President & Political Director. “We always welcome thoughtful conversation on policy issues with any organization. Engaging in false accusations and misinformation following an incident of this magnitude is abhorrent. I sincerely hope that Protect Minnesota will cease this behavior and elevate their level of discourse.”

“We demand an immediate public retraction of these false assertions,” added Strawser.

Doar’s aside about “current leadership” is important:  while Heather Martens was a doddering incompetent, Nancy Nord Bence is a smug, passive-aggressive, entitled incompetent.

UPDATE:  No apology, naturally – but they’re trying to stuff their slander down the memory hole:

Well, aren’t they just a bunch  of profiles in courage?

They know their audience is neither curious nor critical enough to bother with the details.  But Nancy Nord Bence’s oompa-loompas are getting lazier and more reckless as they move out toward the extreme.  It’s eventually gonna cost ’em.

It’s already cost them their credibility.

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.

The Gang That Couldn’t Not Shoot, Straight: Thanks For The Marketing!

During the many years when Representative Heather Martens ran “Protect” Minnesota, the organization developed a reputation as being dodderingly, genially incompetent – like a neighborhood garden circle where everyone forgot to bring gloves.

In the year or so since the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence took over at “”Protect” Minnesota, the image has morphed into a form of more aggressive, turbocharged incompetence.

As an example:  since Bence took over the group, I think I can count the number of email blasts on the mailing list that haven’t required additions, retractions, or correctioons of mistakes on one hand with a few fingers in change, up to and including erroneous announcements of major grants.

But this past Sunday was the best of all.

The “Pink Pistols” – a group of gays and their allies who promote self-defense under the rubric “Armed Gays don’t get bashed” 0- had a booth at the Minneapolis “Pride” festival, in Loring Park.  The Pistols’ booth usually gets a steady stream of interest – but it’s fair to say the Pistols’ name recognition among gays isn’t a whole lot higher than among the general population.

Enter “Protect” Minnesota.

According to a source in the booth, “P”M was passing around a survey asking if attendees had heard of Pink Pistols.

Which apparently drove a steady stream of curious passersby to the booth for their first introduction to the idea of not being a defenseless victim.

So what you say but “thanks?”

Ghouls WIth ELCA Hair

I got this the other day:

The first thing I thought was after reading this part:

I missed it.

I got so wrapped up in work yesterday that I forgot to send out an email commemorating the anniversary of the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub, in Orlando, FL., one year ago.

Put another way:  “I’m such an incompetent tourist on this issue, I had to be reminded by my minions about one of the key parts of my job.

Which leads to the bigger question – what is this “Job” that the Reverend Nord Bence is supposed to be doing?

She follows with a list of mass shootings:

Absent from the list?

Any reference to perpetrators; every one of them a terrorist, a criminal, a  deeply mentally-ill person, often a narcissistic delusional bent on going out in a blaze of glory.   Most of them, by the way, in places where legal carry of firearms by civilians was strictly prohibited, sometimes by federal law, often in cities and states where civilian gun ownership is very stiffly regulated.

What she is doing is exploiting the blood of this long list of victims – victims of human evil and dementia, and of government’s short-sighted deprivation of the means of self-defense – for her “group”‘s onanistic gain.  .

What a foul  person the “Reverend” Nord Bence is.  Truly vile and disgusting.

Loathe as I am to elaborate, she makes one other “point”:

The average person will react in one of two ways when confronted with such a list: give up, or get to work.

Wrong.  They respond one of three ways:

  1. They give up.
  2. They assume, deluded as they are, that oppressing the law-abiding will solve the issue, in complete contravention of all rational evidence
  3. They work to deprive the terrorists and madmen the gun-free zones and defenseless victims they crave.

We know which one the depraved ghoul Nancy Nord Bence is.

How about you?

I don’t imagine she will.  Exploiters never do.

The Keystone Gungrabbers: As If On Cue

On Friday, in discussing the brouhaha over the Big Lake High School Trap team, I noted that “Protect” Minnesota, the habitual liars who lead Minnesota’s gun-grabber movement, disavowed one of their own oranization’s facebook posts.  This is merely the most ridiculous in a long pattern of such japes by the organization and its leader, the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence.

As if on cue, they sent out an email blast on Thursday:

I internally started a retraction countdown timer.

Was I disappointed?

You’ve actually read this blog, haven’t you?  Of course not.  It took 27 hours before this crossed:

It seems this sort of thing happens with every single email that the Reverend Nord Bence sends. 

So – not only has “Protect” Minnesota never, not once, made a substantial, original, true statement about the gun issue, but they’re approaching zero in statements about their own organization.

The media uses them as credible sources on this issue precisely why, again?

Our Morally Incontinent Would-Be Overlords Speak Again

This was “Protect” MN’s response to the Big Lake dust-up yesterday:

In what way does this statement do anything but put the Big Lake High School Trap team – high school kids, doing a sport sanctioned by their school, under rigorous supervision, who are learning the safety rules vastly  better than most people (and some cops)  on the same level as Adam Lanza?

This is the loathsome voice of gun control in Minnesota.

UPDATE:  They spiked the post.

So – not only are they loathsome, but they’re cowards.

What’s the matter, “Protect” MN?

Can’t stand behind your words?

No wonder you run away from head-to-head debate.  Every time you open your mouths against people who can defend themselves, you come out looking not-ready-for-prime-time.

UPDATE 2:  According to a source who spoke with WCCO television,  the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence had this to say about the disappearance of the post equivocating the Big Lake Trap Team with Adam Lanza:

[Nord Bence] said: “That post was made without our knowledge and has been deleted.”

Schwoops!  Down the memory hole?

Does Nancy Nord Bence not control “Protect” MN’s website?    Is there a, pardon the expression, loose cannon on their staff?

Much more seriously:   I know that media people read this blog.   Someone please explain why you use these people as a credible source?

  • They have no respect for facts.
  • They make it up as they go along.
  • They are accountable to nobody and nothing.
  • They have never, not once, made a substantial, original, true statement about the gun issue.

What other source would you cut that kind of slack for?

Unwarranted Sanctimony

The Evanglical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), aka “Unitarians with Lutefisk” (Keillor said it, not me!), are the far-left-leaning wing of American Lutheranism.  The people who gave us “ELCA hair” are headquartered in Minneaopolis, and often seem to spend more time on politics than faith; among certain ELCA circles, “faith” seems to be little but a common theme for (inevitably leftist) politics.  (Most mainline Protestants and Catholics in the Metro are no better).

One of their less-informed stances, like that of most of the dogmatist American left, is on civilian firearms and the Second Amendment.

And they’ve been taking some heat on the issue – because while, like my own former Presbyterian organization (the Presbyterian Church in the USA), the leadership is about as ideologically diverse as a the crowd at the Whole Foods in Berkeley, the folks in the pews on Sundays are all over the place politically (or were: the ELCA, like the PCUSA and other American liberal denominations, is hemorrhaging membership faster than the Gary Glitter fan club).

Anyway, some of the folks in those pews are law-abiding citizens who value the right to keep and bear arms, and they’re not shutting up and taking it from their self-appointed betters.  And  it seems to be rankling the ELCA; someone wrote a post on the ELCA’s “Engage” website responding to some of the flak they’ve gotten.

Well, not so much “responding”.  But we’ll come back to that.

I have received several angry replies to my “Stomping Stand Your Ground” blog. The writers deserve a response.

Although they don’t get a “Response” so much as getting “tut-tutted” by someone who really doesn’t know much about the issue.

One writer called the blog “shameful and disgusting…politically motivated crap. If my church supported this, I would be looking for a real church.” Another wrote “What load of crap! This Lutheran group ought to be ashamed of themselves.”

The ELCA has been supporting this “crap” about actions in support of gun violence prevention (GVP) since 1989.

Since the right to keep and bear arms is one of the things that separates a “citizen” from a “subject”, then yes – the ELCA should be ashamed of their pro-authoritarian stance, and anyone who believes that we, The Peoplle (of all faiths) are supposed to be citizens, not subjects, in our secular, political life, should have some pointed, acerbic questions for the ELCA’s temporal leadership.  (And so should you Catholics and PCUSA Presbyterians and Episcopals and Methodists, too).

Churchwide Assembly action happened in 1989, 1993, 2013 and 2016. Furthermore, the Church Council acted in 1994, the Social Statement “For Peace in God’s World” calls for the need to create peaceful environments, and the St. Paul Area Synod passed two strong GVP resolutions in 2013 and 2016. The ELCA must be a “crappy” church.

If you believe that the best way to secure Peace in God’s World is to keep authoritarianism, dictatorship and tyranny at bay – and I do – then yes.  Those resolutions, as they relate to disarming the law-abiding citizen – are prima facie evidence of a church that is, if not “crappy”, at least more suited to life under an authoritarian regime than a pluralistic democracy founded on the idea of self-government.

I would argue that the will of God and the ethics of Jesus are unabashedly nonviolent in focus. Violence is the result of the Fall and not God pulling the triggers of violence.

And it’s here that the writer – knowingly or not – gets insidious.

All violence is not the same.  Invading Normandy to free Europe is not the same as invading France to enslave Europe.  Freeing a concentration camp through force of arms is not the same as driving people into a camp via force of arms.   Shooting someone who is threatening to kill you or your family is not the same as threatening to kill someone or their family.  To slop them all together under an intentionally-vague label is rhetorically shoddy – and morally repugnant.

The gun in the hands of the law-abiding citizen deters violence; the gun in the hands of the would-be victim of violence turns them, often, into non-victims.

Jesus’ disgust at weapons is clear in his words “Enough!”, “No more of this!” and “Those who live by the [gun] shall die by the [gun].” The Sermon on the Mount is his “magnus opus” on nonviolence.

The Sermon on the Mount decried revenge killing; some religious leaders at the time were preaching that the doctrine of “an eye for an eye” meant that revenge killing was acceptable.  Jesus corrected those false teachings and put the kibosh on that with his sermon.  (Too bad Mohammed never had such a sermon, huh?).  It was not a foreclosure of self-defense.

God and Jesus must be crappy.

No, but the writer’s interpretation of scripture is a tad, er,  fecal.

The Bible also endorses self-defense in several places:  in Exodus 22:2-3 we are told “If the thief is found breaking in, and he is struck so that he dies, there shall be no guilt for his bloodshed. If the sun has risen on him, there shall be guilt for his bloodshed. He should make full restitution; if he has nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.”.  Which reads a lot like Minnesota’s case law on self-defense; you can defend yourself from an immediate threat to your life and health.  If you do it later, as revenge, then you are in huge trouble.

Proverbs 25:26 says “A righteous man who falters before the wicked is like a murky spring and a polluted well.”   Allowing wickedness – whether street crime or political tyranny – to oppress the faithful is wrong.   LIfe – ours, and those of our fellow humans – is a gift from God; to allow the wicked to destroy them is an affront to His creation.

Anyway – you gotta figure that even if the learned scribe from the ECLA can’t do theology, they’ll at least have some Old Testament evidence and logic on their side.

Right?

You actually read this blog, right? What do you think?

Another called the article “misleading and false.” The sources for my comments are Protect Minnesota,

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

As I’ve shown in this space for the past fifteen years, “Protect” Minnesota has never – not once – made a substantial, true, original statement about guns, gun owners, gun laws, the Second Amendment and its legal history, the law-abiding gun owner’s affect on crime, or anything else.

Among the informed, using “Protect” Minnesota as a source is tantamount to admitting you know nothing about the subject.

…The Henry J. Kaiser Foundation, State Health Facts, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Center for Health, plus Harvard, Stanford and Johns Hopkins Universities. I will trust these sources immensely more than those quoted by the gun lobby.

Let’s ignore for a moment the “Appeal to Authority”  – the logical fallacy of using the provenance of your sources as evidence, rather than the actual facts.  Saying “my sources are better than your sources!” are the mark of the seventh-grader who hasn’t learned debate, or logic, yet.

Leaving aside the risible “Protect” Minnesota, the other sources – I’m familiar with all of them – have deep flaws in the information they present.

What are those flaws?  We could go through them point by point, study by study, and systematically refute their applicability and authority.    Indeed, we have, and do, do that; it’s one of several reasons the good guys have been winning this debate for the past twenty years; the facts are on our side.

But I suspect we won’t be going through the with the anonymous writer, because the pro-criminal-safety movement – including the ELCA’s Reverend Nancy Nord Bence, the false-witness-bearing head of “Protect” Minnesota – have told their various adherents not to “engage” with Human Rights activists.

Seems exposure to the facts has caused the Kool-Aid to wear off with some of the less zealous disciples.

One hopes the writer of this piece is made of sterner stuff – more below – but this next bit casts doubts:

I am pleasantly surprised that no one criticized the references to the Second Amendment nor to our nation’s Founding Documents of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. It is nice knowing they are not “crappy.”

Fourth Grade called.  They wanted their big finish back.

Speaking of “big finishes”:

Stand Your Ground escalates the probability of gun violence.

No, it doesn’t – the statement relies on turning a dubious correlation into a  specious causation – but let’s take it at face value for a moment.

If someone shoots someone wrongly – as an aggressor, in commission of a robbery or a gangland shootout – then “Stand your Ground” is irrelevant.   If someone is not the aggressor, and shoots a rapist, a robber, a burglar, a kidnapper, an attacker, then you can say an act of “gun violence” has happened.  But you’d be portraying an act of self-defense – where, by legal definition, someone legitimately feared for their life and health – into an evil act.

And that, itself, is downright evil.

Not “crappy”.  Evil.

Note to readers:  I’m going to try, in a spirit of respect, inquiry and attempt for mutual understanding,  to send a link to this story to the people from “Engage” to see if they will, y’know, engage.  Please feel free to do the same; tell ’em I sent you.

I’d very much like to invite the people behind “Engage” on my show for a rational, factual debate on the subject.   I doubt they’ll do it; I don’t think they have the confidence in their command of the issue, legally, theologically, morally or factually.

But hope, as they say, springs eternal.

Continue reading

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.

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.

Bad Information

Rep. Erin Maye-Quade sent this bit out to her constituents earlier this week:

Looks familiar, doesn’t it?

It’s the same, precise set of fallacious claims made by The Reverend Nancy Nord Bence a few weeks ago.

Neither of the bills would “eliminate” the permit to carry.  That’s not the point, of course, so we’ll let that slide for now.

 

Neither bill will eliminate background checks for purchasing firearms.  Having a card saying you’ve got a clean background is more or less irrelevant; if a cop has time to see a card, they’ve got time to run your driver’s license or car’s license plates and make sure you’ve got a clean record themselves.  The carry permit does nothing but price the right to self-defense out of reach of working-class people.

And the last paragraph is gibberish.  Guns sold online have to go through a licensed firearm dealer, lest they break a slew of federal and state laws on both ends.  Every firearm sold at a gun show in Minnesota gets a background check already.  And the only thing separating a legal and illegal personal transaction is the participant’s honesty and willingness to tell the government what they’re up to.  Criminals don’t, and never will.  It’s not that complicated.

For most of us.

Rep. Maye Quade is either:

  • Grossly ininformed
  • Taking part in a disinformation campaign.

Given that Maye Quade’s wife is a field worker for the Bloombergs, I suspect the answer is “both”.