Pew first: Gun rights top gun control in major public opinion shift

12-10-2014-2-19-42-PMThis is interesting, although to be honest, I find it unsurprising. From the Washington Examiner:

Exactly two years after President Obama’s bid for gun control following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting died in Congress, a new poll has discovered a huge shift in public opinion to backing Second Amendment gun rights and away from controlling gun ownership.

The reason: Americans now believe having a gun is the best way to protect against crime, 63 percent to 30 percent.

Pew Research Center found that while support for gun control once reached 66 percent, it has dropped to 46 percent while support for gun rights has jumped 52 percent, the highest ever in the past 25 years.

“We are at a moment when most Americans believe crime rates are rising and when most believe gun ownership – not gun control – makes people safer,” said the survey.

Keep reading: Pew first: Gun rights top gun control in major public opinion shift | WashingtonExaminer.com.

I said above that I don’t find it particularly surprising. That’s because I don’t think Pew got the cause completely right. probably because of the news coverage we get, some of do think crime is up, and it is, in some locations, like, say Chicago. But I think there is more to it.

Most of you know that I have family on the east coast, and they are fairly normal for the area, compared to me, you’d likely call them liberal, some, at least, voted for Obama, at least once. But when I was back there at Christmas, one of my nieces, who lives in a somewhat isolated area, commented that she was considering getting a gun. I was surprised, although not shocked. Like all my family she has a big dose of reality based thinking in her, and knows that women living alone are vulnerable.

My only advice to her is what it always is, “Make sure first that you are willing to use it, otherwise you are simply giving someone a weapon to use on you. And practice!”

But I don’ think this is driven by crime, at least in the normal sense. I think a large part of this is driven by the administration. Obama has made governance in this country a continual constitutional crisis. His disengagement with many of the American norms of government (even if for most, they are merely lip service), has made much of the citizenry uneasy, and unseemly trends in the surveillance state, and the militarization of police departments has added to the mix.

On an objective basis, many of these things can have a case made for them, but coming one after another, it is distressing, and the obvious unwillingness of the Department of Justice to enforce the law on an objective basis (remember the Black panthers in Philadelphia back in 2009?) has made it worse, far worse.

In large measure then, I don’t think the country is arming itself against crime so much, as it is arming itself against a rogue government, in defense of our freedom. That is, of course, the real purpose of the second amendment, not to protect hunting, or to fight crime, but to stop tyranny in its tracks.

And it appears to be working.

I also find it interesting that politics is changing as well. if one were to look at American governance outside of Washington, one would find it to be more conservative than it has been since 1928. so perhaps what we are seeing, is the return of that peculiarly American individualism and self-reliance, and the beginning of the break up of the nanny state.

Well, one can hope, anyway :)

Here’s What Happens When It’s Okay To Punish People’s Beliefs

The Embattled Farmer

The Embattled Farmer

Rick Wilson wrote an article the other day on The Federalist that caught my attention, and deserves yours, as well.

I try to stay off Twitter on April first. The jokes are rarely as good as their authors think, which is why the Internet Rage Machine attack unleashed on the Memories Pizza parlor in Indiana couldn’t have happened on a worse day. This had to be a joke, right?

Sadly, it wasn’t. It was a custom-made moral panic story perfectly tuned to stroke the egos and ideological erogenous zones of Washington and New York’s media classes. It was a perfect opportunity to play their Red State Haters narrative at full volume. Of course, we’re locked in the Stupid Spiral now, talking about this instead of the news of a Democratic U.S. senator being indicted for corruption or of Hillary Clinton destroying evidence under subpoena, or of Barack Obama willing to sell his soul for a bad nuclear deal with a gleeful Iran.

Custom made is one of the operative phrases here. The situation that the owner was asked about had never happened, and likely never would have. Long ago when I lived in Indiana, I spent a certain amount of time in Walkerton. It was another small town much like millions of others scattered across the heartland of America, quiet, unassuming, a great place to live and raise a family, mostly Christians, more or less. In fact, it could just as well been the town in Nebraska I live in now.

And so this little girl reporter from the ‘big city’ (if South Bend  counts) strolls into a pizzeria and asked a stupid question. Not least is it stupid because how many wedding receptions, of any kind, are held at a pizzeria, anyway? The owner, likely an open and forthright Christian man said he’d likely have a problem with a gay wedding reception. Well, I don’t have much trouble seeing his point, and it’s not even necessarily about SSM, either.

I doubt there is a business in America that hasn’t turned away business for one reason or another. I surely have, for me it’s often that I don’t have time for your silly requirements, or you can’t understand why I won’t violate code, or I simply don’t think you’ll pay. Usually I’ll simply say I’m too busy and let it go. I need customers but I don’t need any given customer, and life too short to knowingly take on trouble that you can avoid. And getting in the middle of SSM for no good reason is nothing but trouble.

And so, back to Rick:

As with immigration, race, abortion, guns, income inequality, and a host of other topics, I’m reminded that gay marriage and religious liberty questions will never be resolved in the eyes of liberals. A large segment of the Left wants their vote-driver issues to never, ever be in the rear-view. There is no shining city ahead for them, just an endless arena of raw, almost inchoate rage and complaint. Their entire model is predicated on the creation and maintenance of grievance demographics, and the latest flavor is the hypothetical oppression of gay couples in contrived scenarios in tiny Indiana pizza shops. Oh, this one will fade soon, but the sense that these fights are getting louder, and uglier, is troubling.

And that’s a goodly portion of the trouble, isn’t it? It’s become an endless skirmish, they can’t be satisfied. In truth, they don’t give a damn, it’s simply a means to get votes, and the devil take the hindmost. They can’t really be against anything because they’re not for anything really, except being in power, and that ain’t a noble cause.

In the government/civil area, I personally have little problem with SSM, I simply don’t believe it’s any of the government’s business. As a Christian, it does rather strongly conflict with my beliefs but that doesn’t give me the right to impose my beliefs on others, nor does it give them the right to impose their’s on me, or for that matter my church.

But in a very real way, that’s all prologue:

At some point, the social-justice warrior crowd is going to incite their people into something more than Ferguson or Occupy or Internet harassment. At some point, their fanatic desire to erase God from the hearts and minds and actions of red America will cross a threshold. Someday, in some town, a Christian shopkeeper who becomes the focus of the 4chan or Reddit Rage Machine will be killed by some militant atheist or black bloc kid or some other flavor of crazy. That day, their rage won’t come from the click of a mouse, but from the barrel of a gun.

Keep reading: Here’s What Happens When It’s Okay To Punish People’s Beliefs.

And that is the day that America as we knew her ends. Because while the left continues to think it’s all about votes and elections and power, for much of the Red States it’s not. It’s about freedom and liberty and the rights of the individual, and what our forefathers built. It’s the closest thing to an established religion there is in America, and if that line is crossed, all those hundreds of millions of weapons come out, and the argument is over, and the war is on.

The funny thing is that while the left doesn’t know it, it’s the same war that the Barons  fought at Runnymede 800 years ago this month, it’s the same war as the English Civil War, it’s the Glorious Revolution, the American Revolution and it’s the American Civil War. It’s the war of the people against the government and its prerogative power. And it’s also the war between good and evil, and the people who recognize the difference and the time servers who ‘go along to get along’. It’ll be terrible because many of us know that anything worth living for is also worth dying for.

And the king with all of his horses and all of his men doesn’t have a chance but, America will for a time become a bloody shambles, and so will the world, because without American leadership it’ll all stop.

Long ago Thomas Jefferson said:

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

He also said this:

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

One prays that time has not come again but, if it has, it has.

None of this is inevitable or likely even probable. But I think the left has become like children playing with matches in the powder magazine, and it is worrying.

What must be done will be done.

Number One with a Bullet

Well, we haven’t done Bill Whittle for a while, so let’s have a look at his latest shall we.

He here brings us the numbers to back up what any rational man knows, Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. It’s like I always say, the safest place in America is a honky-tonk bar out here in the west, where everyone (and I do mean everyone) is carrying at least one gun, plus assorted cutlery. Here’s Bill.

It’s so simple even a Librul should be able to figure it out, although since they consistently add apples and oranges and get lemonade, that might be wishful thinking.

 

Robert A. Heinlein said it long ago

An armed society is a polite society

Alone and Defenseless

The Equalizer

The Equalizer

Although as we have often said here, protection from criminal acts is not, and never was, the purpose of our second amendment, its purpose is to allow ourselves to defend ourselves against a criminal government, it is a comforting side benefit. It is also one that the cousins, who taught us the lesson, forgot and gave away.

But some are thinking about it again, not so much with regard to its real purpose as spelled out here but, in response to the terror threat, which is certainly valid, both currently and historically.

[…]

Whereas the Lords Spiritual and Temporal and Commons assembled at Westminster, lawfully, fully and freely representing all the estates of the people of this realm, did upon the thirteenth day of February in the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred eighty-eight [old style date] present unto their Majesties, then called and known by the names and style of William and Mary, prince and princess of Orange, being present in their proper persons, a certain declaration in writing made by the said Lords and Commons in the words following, viz.:

Whereas the late King James the Second, by the assistance of divers evil counsellors, judges and ministers employed by him, did endeavour to subvert and extirpate the Protestant religion and the laws and liberties of this kingdom;

By assuming and exercising a power of dispensing with and suspending of laws and the execution of laws without consent of Parliament;

By committing and prosecuting divers worthy prelates for humbly petitioning to be excused from concurring to the said assumed power;

By issuing and causing to be executed a commission under the great seal for erecting a court called the Court of Commissioners for Ecclesiastical Causes;

By levying money for and to the use of the Crown by pretence of prerogative for other time and in other manner than the same was granted by Parliament;

By raising and keeping a standing army within this kingdom in time of peace without consent of Parliament, and quartering soldiers contrary to law;

By causing several good subjects being Protestants to be disarmed at the same time when papists were both armed and employed contrary to law;

And thereupon the said Lords Spiritual and Temporal and Commons, pursuant to their respective letters and elections, being now assembled in a full and free representative of this nation, taking into their most serious consideration the best means for attaining the ends aforesaid, do in the first place (as their ancestors in like case have usually done) for the vindicating and asserting their ancient rights and liberties declare

[…]

That it is the right of the subjects to petition the king, and all commitments and prosecutions for such petitioning are illegal;

That the raising or keeping a standing army within the kingdom in time of peace, unless it be with consent of Parliament, is against law;

That the subjects which are Protestants may have arms for their defence suitable to their conditions and as allowed by law;

That election of members of Parliament ought to be free;[…]

From the English Bill of Rights, 1689, and if you’ve been paying attention you will hear echoes of Magna Charta here. This is the primary source document for our American Bill of Rights, and why we defend our ancient rights, so fiercely.

But we do so alone, only America still has some most of those rights. But, perhaps some Brits are wakening up finally. This is from American Thinker on 23 January of 2015.

Alone and Defenseless: A UK Citizen’s call for arms

In August 2014 the independent government advisory group in the UK known as JTAC (Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre) raised the threat level for the entire UK (including Northern Ireland) to “Severe,” one step down from the maximum Critical level, where it has remained to this day some 5 months on. In the words of the conservative home secretary two days ago — attacks in the UK are “very likely.

The threat of marauding gunmen in a city, so vividly illustrated at the offices of Charlie Hebdo and the Kosher supermarket, has been clearly apparent to western nations since the horrific Mumbai attacks in 2008. MI5 have confirmed that the Syrian arm of a resurgent al-Qaeda is planning similar attacks against the UK, possibly by British jihadists who have already returned from fighting in Syria or Iraq. They include plans to blow up a passenger jet, employ Mumbai style shootings in crowded places or even hit-and-run attacks using vehicles (an attack style employed in France in Christmas 2014). Andrew Parker (Director General of the security service MI5) said the number of random “crude and potentially deadly” plots from “lone wolf” extremists was increasing. In a stark warning, he said: “Although we and our partners try our utmost, we know we cannot hope to stop everything.”

This is where we find ourselves now. Every citizen in Europe and the UK faces the risk of an Islamic attack merely while going about normal day-to-day business. UK citizens in particular face this risk whilst being denied weapons of self defense. In the past I have fully and enthusiastically supported the UK’s complete ban on hand guns. But immediately after the killing of Lee Rigby I began to reconsider the wisdom of that ban and I now utterly oppose it. As things stand in the UK, hand guns are illegal. For those shotguns you could own, extremely strict licensing specifically disallows self defense as a motive for ownership and so the old adage “In countries where guns are illegal, only the criminals have guns” is the frankly mad situation we now have in the UK.

Articles: Alone and Defenseless: A UK Citizen’s call for arms.

Good luck to him, he’s right but, I doubt he’ll ever convince many of his fellow subjects, let alone HM Government.

And all of us should remember

When you need the police in seconds, they’re only minutes away

and in Britain the armed police may be hours away.

Concealed Carry and the Right of Self-Defense

Feb25We haven’t been talking a lot about this lately mostly because other than a few loonies like NYC’s mayor, few are pushing it. But as always, we need to pay attention.

One thing that struck me as we all watched the events in Paris, is how helpless Europeans have become, simply passive sheep awaiting slaughter. Nor was it the first time these thoughts were in my mind.

Most of you know that I have many friends in Britain, and a while back when Drummer Rigby was butchered in Woolwich, we talked about it both on the Watchtower and I expanded on those comments here. It was very interesting to see the differences in  the American viewpoint contrasted with the British, and I suspect continental Europeans are even more passive.

In fact, the passivity contained in the comment by a distinguished British educator chilled my blood.

We are entirely dependent upon the Police”

My response was as follows:

It’s true of course, most of us have read of British subjects sentenced to life in prison for defending themselves in their home from an armed assailant. And I’m certain I speak for most American when I say, with that system, you are not free. To me and most likely to my compatriots it brings to mind a phrase that Thomas Jefferson used.

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.”

Which translates as,

“I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.”

This was brought to mind this morning as I read from Dave “the Sage”, in his usual, calm rational style the case for the armed citizen, which is as true today as it was when the right was written into Magna Charta 800 years ago., thereby codifying an existing right. Here’s a piece  of it:

“A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity.” 

–  Sigmund Freud

[…]

The truth is often very simple. The law-abiding, gun-owning citizen is not the problem but for some reason is often the target of those who seek to disarm the populace.

When I received my concealed handgun permit it required little more than having the right sheriff, taking a hunters safety course, filling out a questionnaire, not having a criminal record, and writing a check. They have since tightened the restrictions a bit, but not by much if you know the right NRA instructor. Seventy-five dollars can get you an afternoon of target practice, training, and your ticket to the coveted concealed-carry permit if you are willing to do your homework.

Think of the growing number of concealed handgun permit holders as thousands of walking safety bubbles moving throughout society and undoubtedly crossing your path while potentially protecting you and your family without you even knowing it. You can live as a victim subject to the whim of criminals and crazies or you can live as a free man and have the potential to protect yourself, your family, and your community. I choose the latter.

[…]

No one should insist on leaving entire sections of the community open and helpless to the predations of murderous psychopaths. It is important to attempt to help change a culture that has wandered hopelessly off the path of logic and common sense, and help to rectify the pathetically failed policies that cost some people their lives. I can think of nothing more important to address than that. People are dead because of others stupidity and continual striving for a utopian nanny state. That cannot be excused or allowed to continue anymore.

Free Americans should have the right to defend themselves from the more unsavory elements of society that attempt to prey upon or outright kill them.

Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.

— Jefferson’s “Commonplace Book,” 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764

Concealed Carry and the Right of Self-Defense ⋆ Dc Gazette.

It strikes me that the main problem with the Europeans, and with some segments in America as well, is that they have abdicated the right to be a free person, along with (or perhaps because of) the concomitant obligation to act in their own interest. And so they sold their freedom for a little temporary safety, and as always, they soon shall have neither.

A Beheading in Oklahoma

From Bill Whittle

 

Moral cowardice that keeps us from speaking our minds is as dangerous to this country as irresponsible talk.

Margaret Chase Smith

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