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Guns Truth

We’re Forgetting: The Right To Bear Arms Is Essential For Life And Liberty

by KrisAnne Hall, JD

As we remember Martin Luther King, Jr., let’s also remember he was denied the right to keep and bear arms, and many states, including some run by Republicans, are pushing more gun restrictions.

They have forgotten or never learned that the right to keep and bear arms is an essential protection for Life and Liberty.

Samuel Adams wrote in 1792: “Among the Natural Rights of the Colonists are these First life, secondly liberty, third property, together with the right to defend them in the best manner possible.”  Adams continued his point by noting that these rights are a direct product of the First law of Nature, the Duty of self-preservation.

Those who would stand for the Right to keep and bear arms do so with the interest of preserving life and liberty – not destroying it.  Those who support the Right to keep and bear arms support the Natural Right and duty of self-preservation, they support the ability to defend life and liberty not only for themselves but for their neighbors.  They support freedom and just government, they support ensuring that our future generations will be able to be a government of the people, not subject to a government over the people. They keep and bear arms, they train in the skill of defense because they love their children, their families, and their neighbors and want to defend the most precious gifts of life, at their own expense, if necessary. 

Those who oppose the Right to keep and bear arms, whether intentionally or not, support the opposite of life and liberty – they support slavery, they support oppression, they support despotic government rule over the people.  

Those who ignorantly support disarming the people do so because they have been convinced of one eternal error – that those in power respect the lives and liberties of the people and will protect them.  There is absolutely nothing in the history of man that ought to give someone that false delusion of hope.  

History is ripe with one oracle of truth: When the people are disarmed they are inevitably enslaved by the more powerful, more able, or more populated groups.  Disarming the people never ever frees the minority. To the contrary, in a disarmed society the minority becomes the first to be converted to chattel. Slavery is not possible in a society where the people are well armed and well trained in the skill of defense and the knowledge of the value of life and liberty worth defending.

Those who knowingly support disarming the people do so because they are power hungry, lack respect for life, and wish to control and dominate life, liberty, and property.  They know just how to motivate the ignorant through the greatest human deception, contrived necessity. They know how to control the powerless, corral the weak, and convince a morally depleted population to organize and come against their own neighbors.  

They are those among us who endeavor to rob the innocent of their God given rights to enrich and empower themselves and endanger most precious gifts of life and at the fatal cost of a free future.  They care only about themselves; they are the ones who pass by a neighbor in need and demand the right to take life out of a feigned excuse derived from the most selfish center of humankind. They seek to rob, kill, and destroy life, liberty and property and they are the very spirit that has caused the institutions of slavery and despotism to rise throughout history.

William Pitt, The Younger summed it up best when he said,

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom, it is the argument of tyrants, it is the creed of slaves.”

There is a day where every American reflects on who they are, who they want to be, and takes the time to classify themselves.  Are you a slave? Are you a tyrant? Or are you a freeman?

If you have determined that you love your neighbor as yourself, if you love your children and your children’s children, if you wish to remain a freeman and not encourage slavery at the hand of the despot, then what comes next is your only choice… 

John Adams wrote, “Liberty must at all hazards be defended, we have a right to it derived from our maker.  But if we had not, our fathers have bought and purchased it for us at the expense of their ease, their estates and their pleasure and their blood.”

So, first, you stand up for the weak and ignorant.  You stand up to say, we will not let you be enslaved.  We will defend you as well as our own because that is the call of Liberty that Makes America Great

Second, you Stand up to the tyrant.  You declare your Natural Rights just as we did on July 4, 1776 – That all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.  That these rights, being derived from Nature, a gift to all mankind, precede all government and all law; that all laws must be made to conform to our Natural Rights, or they are no law at all.  You tell the tyrant that you hold no ill will, that you love him and pray peace, and because you love him you will not allow him to enslave your neighbor and you will not allow him to deny us and our future a Right guaranteed by our Creator.

Mercy Otis Warren made this plea: 

“America stands armed with resolution and virtue; but she still recoils at the idea of drawing the sword against the nation from whence she derived her origin. Yet Britain, like an unnatural parent, is ready to plunge her dagger into the bosom of her affectionate offspring. But may we not yet hope for more lenient measures!”

You see, it won’t be those who defend Liberty who pray violence.  Those fighting for the Right to keep and bear arms are armed, yes, with resolution and virtue to preserve life, not end it, to secure liberty, not destroy it.  It will be those who have no respect for life, that hold no love for their brother, who love self more than liberty and life – the tyrants and slaves – who will bring violence for violent ends.

These are the times that try men’s souls.  These are the days when choices must be made.  Today we choose peace. Today we choose Life. Today we choose Liberty.  And because we’ve made these choices, today we choose to defend our right to secure Life, Liberty, and Property from those who would come to rob, steal, and destroy.  Today we stand in defense of our Natural Right to keep and bear arms.

And if you find yourself in opposition to this essential Right.  If you find yourself thinking it’s necessary to deny us this Right or that someone must control and disarm the people, you have classified yourself… as either the tyrant or the slave. 

You see if we are historically honest there is only one question necessary in the gun control discussion: Do you trust that the people in power will never use the force of government to take your Life, Liberty, or Property?

If the answer to that question is no, the discussion is over and you now finally know why we stand before you today and every day, armed with virtue and resolution to declare

244 years ago we took a stand and said, no more kings, and we’re not about to change our minds now.

KrisAnne Hall is a former biochemist, Russian linguist for the US Army, and former prosecutor for the State of Florida. KrisAnne also practiced First Amendment Law for a prominent Florida non-profit Law firm. KrisAnne now travels the country teaching the foundational principles of Liberty and our Constitutional Republic. KrisAnne is the author of 6 books on the Constitution and Bill of Rights, she also has an internationally popular radio and television show and her books and classes have been featured on C-SPAN TV. KrisAnne can be found at www.KrisAnneHall.com.


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Guns Truth

U.S. Road To Hell Is Paved With Gun-Grabbing Intentions

By Francis Marion

America’s largest retailer, Walmart, is the next to succumb to the anti-gun movement following the high-profile shootings over the past few weeks. 

Walmart has decided to remove all “handgun” and “short barreled rifle” ammunition from their shelves in order to focus their sales on ammunition more appropriate for hunting purposes. This should not be a surprise considering the recent push to appease voters in the Democrat primary battleground, along with the relentlessly anti-gun focused media coverage of these killings.

The firearms industry will not suffer as a result of Walmart’s decision. There are plenty of available outlets for purchasing ammunition. The greatest concern for many 2nd Amendment supporters is the level of ignorance in anti-gun circles, from retail stores to the media to politicians. 

First and foremost, America’s favorite rifle platform is a highly modular device with hundreds of variations, configurations, and caliber options. So what does Walmart mean by “pistol and short barreled rifle ammunition?”

The AR-15 rifle which is traditionally chambered in 5.56 nato or 223 Remington rounds has been extended well beyond the ammunition that had been the standard cartridge of the U.S. military and her allies for the past 60 years. In the past 20 years, the AR-15 has been modified to accept more than 50 additional calibers to include popular hunting and defensive pistol cartridges, not to mention the several dozen calibers associated with the larger cousin of the AR-15, the AR-10.

Lastly, hunting cartridges far exceed the performance of small arms cartridges like the 5.56 nato round. For example, one of the most popular hunting calibers, the 30-06, saw military service for seven decades and is still in common use today. The 30-06 cartridge has an effective range double that of most modern small arms cartridges. 

All of this means that Walmart’s decision, along with virtually every political proposal, doesn’t truly impact anything more than to put on display the dangerous level of ignorance on the subject.

So where do we go from here?

It is incumbent upon 2nd Amendment supporters to educate those who do not understand the finer points of the gun debate, from the gun terms to the history and meaning of the 2nd Amendment. 

We have begun our descent down the slippery slope of citizen disarmament and an infringement on our basic natural rights outlined within our Constitution. As virtue-signaling policies fail to address the greater issues in this country that lead to mass shootings, the woke left will take advantage of the next tragedy to try to grab the next mile of Americans’ rights.

Francis Marion is a nine-year veteran of the U.S. Army, as an Infantryman and Airborne volunteer. He led a squad fighting in the Iraqi and Afghan campaigns. He was wounded during a deployment to Paktika Province in Afghanistan and medically retired in 2016. He is currently transitioning into a medical career while working as a small arms repairmen, firearms instructor and advisor to security professionals


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Guns Truth Video

VIDEO: Conservative-Liberal TV Gun Debate Finds Common Ground Fatherhood

A liberal Democrat and a conservative Republican walk into a TV studio to debate the latest mass shootings — and walk out agreeing that an overarching problem is the absence of fathers in the home. I was not going to post this as it got too far past — although the truths in the discussion remain true — but then there was this nutjob killer in Texas.

Acrimony then agreement.

The first segment went exactly the way you would expect after El Paso. White racism, too many guns, etc. But the second, longer segment opened up our agreement. My opponent, who is a very long-term Democrat politician, continued to find disagreements and make political hay, but we really were agreeing on the primary issue of fatherhood and mental health. He just naturally wants to restrict guns, too. Give a listen.

This is ground where a lot of normal Americans who disagree on guns — not politicians, they’re hopelessly entrenched in narratives — can probably agree.

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Democrats Guns Truth

NYT Gives Democrats Marching Orders On El Paso Shooting

Rod Thomson

It is to be expected that Democrats will coldly attempt to score political points from the tragic shootings in Texas and Ohio. Integrity-free politicians will do anything to get elected or stay in office.

The combined shootings over the same weekend will predictably create a call for more gun laws that would do nothing to reduce violence or even gun violence in the United States, as is painfully clear in our ongoing lab testing between states and cities with strict gun laws and those with very few.

But the El Paso shooting will get most of the attention, because it combines the left’s loathing of guns with its reflexive use of the word-weapon “racism” all the time. El Paso is a springboard for blaming all Republicans for guns and blaming President Trump for creating a violent anti-immigrant atmosphere.

And inconveniently, the shooter in Ohio was a known supporter of Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. His Twitter biography reads, “he/him / anime fan / metalhead / leftist / i’m going to hell and i’m not coming back.” And he supported strict guns laws! All of which means this will be forgotten as quickly as the shooter who shot up the Republican softball team and was a rabid Bernie Sanders supporter.

Ever the opportunist, Demcratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke jumped on this immediately on Face the Nation Sunday. “I’m saying that President Trump has a lot to do with what happened in El Paso yesterday,” he said. Trump “sows the kind of fear, the kind of reaction that we saw in El Paso yesterday.” 

But the New York Times, which all leftists and Democrat political leaders read and take cues from, essentially wrote the party talking points for them, right from the “news analysis” lead:

At campaign rallies before last year’s midterm elections, President Trump repeatedly warned that America was under attack by immigrants heading for the border. “You look at what is marching up, that is an invasion!” he declared at one rally. “That is an invasion!”

Nine months later, a 21-year-old white man is accused of opening fire in a Walmart in El Paso, killing 20 people and injuring dozens more after writing a manifesto railing against immigration and announcing that “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”

There you go, Democrats. It’s spelled out with citations for you by your allies at the New York Times.

Talking Point: Trump used the word “invasion” and the shooter used the word “invasion.”

President Trump said Sunday after the shootings: “Hate has no place in our country, and we’re going to take care of it.” On Monday, he tweeted:

“We cannot let those killed in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, die in vain. Likewise for those so seriously wounded. We can never forget them, and those many who came before them. Republicans and Democrats must come together and get strong background checks, perhaps marrying…this legislation with desperately needed immigration reform. We must have something good, if not GREAT, come out of these two tragic events!”

But here’s how the New York Times summed it up for readers: 

“Hate has no place in our country, and we’re going to take care of it,” the president said, declining to elaborate but promising to speak more on Monday morning. He made no mention of white supremacy or the El Paso manifesto, but instead focused on what he called “a mental illness problem.”

This is a beautiful example of why Trump needs Twitter and every Republican needs communications outlets that bypass the Democrat media establishment. Does anyone even doubt that in 2019, with zero culture of white supremacy, that anyone who believes in such garbage has mental issues? And just because President Obama would dive in with very few facts doesn’t mean Trump should.

Talking Point: Trump refuses to acknowledge his role in whipping up hate. 

What’s really interesting is that in the shooter’s manifesto, he states clearly that his views on immigration “predate Trump,” because even a deranged mass murderer knows what the media and Democrats are going to do with his evil act.

The Times acknowledges the “predate Trump” statement but dismisses it. “But if Mr. Trump did not originally inspire the gunman, he has brought into the mainstream polarizing ideas and people once consigned to the fringes of American society.”

Perhaps the Times has forgotten, but immigration has been one of the most polarizing debates we’ve had for many years. The Times stopped covering it much — and nothing on kids in cages at the border — during President Obama’s eight years, but it turns out that reality still happens even if the Times does not report it. Illegal immigration has been divisive for decades and tens of millions of Americans’ frustration had reached a boiling point long before Trump. It’s part of what got him elected.

But here’s the summary, which you can expect to hear coming out of Democrats’ mouths.

“While other leaders have expressed concern about border security and the costs of illegal immigration, Mr. Trump has filled his public speeches and Twitter feed with sometimes false, fear-stoking language even as he welcomed to the White House a corps of hard-liners, demonizers and conspiracy theorists shunned by past presidents of both parties. Because of this, Mr. Trump is ill equipped to provide the kind of unifying, healing force that other presidents projected in times of national tragedy.”

The Times conveniently forgets how President Obama stoked racial animus after Ferguson, after Baltimore and after Trayvon Martin. Trump may be ill-equipped, but Obama proved repeatedly he was. The Times is silent on that point, because the actual point of their coverage is to set the stage for Democrats to attack Trump and all Republicans.

But this: “he welcomed to the White House a corps of hard-liners, demonizers and conspiracy theorists shunned by past presidents of both parties.” The Times does not name these people, nor point out the haters previous presidents have invited because of political alliances.But it’s a politically useful salvo.

Talking Point: Trump has even invited racist anti-immigration hard-liners to the White House.

El Paso Mayor Dee Margo got it right when, after CNN’s Jake Tapper repeatedly tried to get him to link the shooting with Trump’s language: “I’m focusing on El Paso. There’s evil in this world and it’s unfortunate.”

Don’t expect to get that reality check from the Democrats or their media.

Rod Thomson is an author, past Salem radio host, ABC TV commentator, former journalist and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. 


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Constitution Guns Rights Second Amendment Truth

Presidents Day Open Letter: Historical Case For Not Enforcing Laws That Deny the Right to Keep and Bear Arms

Open letter to Governors, Attorneys General, the Legislators of these United States and the People along with their Sheriffs and Peace Officers
From KrisAnne Hall, JD

Both Washington State Governor Jay Inslee and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson have issued letters regarding the State of Washington’s Initiative 1639 and Washington law enforcement officials’ refusal to enforce the measure in part or in total. Similar laws are being passed by legislators and signed into law by the governors of other States, sadly with little protest.

Proponents of Washington’s Initiative 1639 and those critical of the law enforcement officials cite a “duty to the Constitution” and to the “rule of law.” Yet in many respects these laws are built on the circumvention and abdication of the rule of law. The Constitution and its underlying principles define the rule of law. As such, “the rule of law” cannot be synonymous with “the will of the” majority, as Washington’s AG suggests, when the majority’s will advocates the suspension of due process and the revocation of a person’s natural rights (which all officials involved in this debate swore an oath to uphold.)

The Declaration of Independence lays before us the premise and purpose of all governments, past, present, and future. It states:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…(emphasis mine)

 

Sole Purpose of Government: Secure the Rights of All People Equally and Individually

It is evident that the entire purpose of any form of government is to secure the rights of the individual citizens. The Rights our foundational documents refer to are those classified as “inherent rights:” and they consist of life, liberty, property, and the right to personally secure them in the best manner possible.  The most basic of natural rights is the right to self-preservation, to which the natural right to secure property is connected.

No person is secure in their life, if they cannot also personally secure that life and the property upon which life is dependent. If a person is in danger of loss of life, liberty, or property and has not the personal right, along with the individual ability, to secure these essential rights, then each person is dependent upon someone else’s desire to protect them, reducing every person to that of an indentured or tributary slave, indebted in life to those who are tasked with its security.

 

Origin of Legislative Power: Individual Rights Precede Legislative Power, Therefore Legislative Power Exists Solely To Ensure Individual Rights

The legislator with his delegated responsibility, cannot be exalted above the inherent rights of the individual which he is charged to protect. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because people have legislators who have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused people to entrust legislators with the power to make laws in the first place. So the justification “it was passed by the legislature,” does not and should not override an inherent individual right, even more so when the legislature is admonished by the Supreme Law to not infringe upon said right.

The Definition of “Just Power”: Just Power of Government Secures The Individual’s Rights Above All Other Objectives

Therefore it is a just government, which impartially secures to every man, whatever is his individually and personally. It is because of this duty to protect the individual’s natural rights that every government in these United States incorporates the requirement of due process for the suspension of these Rights. It is not a just government, nor is an individual’s right secure under it, where the property which a man has in his personal safety and personal liberty, is violated by arbitrary seizures of one class of citizens for the comfort or peace of mind of the rest (even if the rest constitutes 60% of the population).

 

The Definition of “Unjust Power”: Unjust Power is Power Exercised by Government to the Destruction Of the Individual’s Rights

The mere existence of a majority desire does not override the natural rights of the minority. To create and enforce laws merely because the majority (60% of the people) desire the law to be so, absent any regard to personal and individual rights, is nothing more than a tyranny of the majority.

It is through this errant political motivation that history’s greatest injustices have taken place, even here in America. It was once the majority opinion that a minority of people could, by law, be placed in a state of permanent and inherent servitude. It was once the majority opinion that a minority of people could be legally classified as mere property or chattel. It was once the majority opinion that legally enforced physical segregation of the majority from a minority was appropriate. It was once the majority opinion that a minority of Japanese Americans and Hopi Indians could lawfully be imprisoned indefinitely in internment camps without due process.

Americans ought to be learning from these mistakes, not fighting to repeat them. The majority of Americans would agree that a single dictator with the power to oppress all is a wicked and unjust government. Please then explain, how the tyranny of the majority is any different than the despotism of one in the lives of those whose rights are violated?

 

The “Will of the Majority” is Contrary to the Rule of Law Majority Rule is synonymous with Tyranny of the Majority Not With Security of Rights

The “Rule of Law” is a term that has been understood throughout history to mean a standard to limit the overreach of government and curb lawlessness. It is does not mean the authority of the government to rule over the people. The independent states of America and their central government were created with written Constitutions to maintain a written limited standard for government to prevent the will of the majority and those who govern to usurp the rights of the individual.

The so-called “will of the majority” cannot be synonymous with the rule of law. If that be the case, then those who are disposed to usurp the rights of the people, need only to control the will of the majority; either through manipulations, coercions, fear, or brute force. It is because of this truth of the tyranny of the majority that every government in these United States is required to exist as a republic, not a pure democracy; that every law to be created through equal representation, and is to be governed by and limited to the ultimate purpose of all government — the security of the Rights of the individual through written Constitutions. When any form of government operates contrary to these foundations, that government has exceeded its proper function, acting in direct opposition to its own purpose.

The law has been used to destroy its own objective. It has been applied to annihilating the justice that it was supposed to maintain, to limiting and destroying rights which its real purpose was to respect. It has converted lawful defense of life, liberty, and property into a crime, in order to punish lawful defense of these essential and natural rights.

 

When the Laws of Government Operate Contrary to Individual Rights:
  1. Government Is Operating Contrary to Its Sole Purpose
  2. Government Is Not Operating with Just Power
  3. The People Are Not Free

It becomes the duty of all who love and respect the Rights of their children to protect the citizen from the unjust operation of government.

When those entrusted in government to secure the rights of the individuals turn that trust into a tool to deny those rights, it is incumbent upon those who understand the obvious limits of government and the necessity of those limits to stand in opposition to that unjust use of authority; just as those in America’s past, who refused to enforce the Federal Fugitive Slave Act because of its obvious abuse of power and destruction of rights wielded by those legislators who ratified it into law.

Those who have taken an oath to secure the rights of the people, who understand the magnitude of that solemn promise and the unavoidable and tragic consequences of failing to uphold that promise, feel morally compelled to take a stand. How noble an example would American history have if there was just one Sheriff in Montgomery, Alabama who recognized that a law, ratified by legislators, signed by a governor, reflecting the will of the majority, was not a just law after all. What if instead of arresting Mrs. Rosa Parks, that Sheriff refused to enforce a law that deprived an individual of her rights and instead protected those rights, escorting Mrs. Parks, in which ever seat she chose, all the way home? Those, who are dedicated to their just and lawful duty to secure the rights of the people, understand that at these times the “will of the majority” and the distortion of the rule of law’s definition must be resisted.

The right to individually secure our life, liberty, and property is no different than our rights to freedom of speech, freedom to peaceably assemble, or freedom to worship and live out our faith. A law that establishes that a person is prohibited from possessing any degree of property, but especially property essential to the personal security of individual rights, without due process, ought to be seen as arbitrary.  A capricious legislature moved by the tragedy du jour should not be the model for sound and stable government that protects liberty.

If the governments of these United States mean to obtain or deserve the full praise due to wise and just governments, they will equally respect the rights of property, and every inherent right of the individual.  If they truly wish for a free and strong nation, they will endeavor to sacredly guard all forms of individual property and resist all desires to violate the individual’s right, regardless of the opinion of the majority or the fleeting emotion of the day.

They will not seek to “target the bad guys” by stripping law abiding citizens of their inherent rights and turning otherwise lawful behavior into crimes. Our inherent rights are not killing innocents, so why are our rights targeted? Oppression doesn’t bring safety. Our governments should seek to be a pattern liberty and example of just government so that our posterity may be truly free.


An honorable oath:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution and laws of the State of (name of State), and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of (name of office) to the best of my ability.

 

Sincerely and In Liberty,

KrisAnne Hall, JD

KrisAnne Hall is a former biochemist, Russian linguist for the US Army, and former prosecutor for the State of Florida. KrisAnne also practiced First Amendment Law for a prominent Florida non-profit Law firm. KrisAnne now travels the country teaching the foundational principles of Liberty and our Constitutional Republic. KrisAnne is the author of 6 books on the Constitution and Bill of Rights, she also has an internationally popular radio and television show and her books and classes have been featured on C-SPAN TV. KrisAnne can be found at www.KrisAnneHall.com.


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Guns Second Amendment Truth

Florida Facing A Complete Assault Weapon Ban In 2020

Rod Thomson

Florida, the state with some of the strongest Second Amendment protections in the country, may be facing the reality of voters putting a full-on assault weapons ban into the Florida Constitution — bypassing a Republican-controlled Legislature that has resisted any such moves even after last year’s Parkland school massacre.

Gail Schwartz, the aunt of one of the students killed a year ago at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, held a press conference Monday to announce a petition drive she is spearheading to put a constitutional amendment on the Florida ballot in 2020 that would ban “assault weapons.” Her group is forthrightly named Ban Assault Weapons Now.

The language of the proposed amendment defines an assault weapon as “semi-automatic rifles and shotguns capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition at once, either in fixed or detachable magazine, or any other ammunition-feeding device.” Such a broad ban could presumably capture everything down to a revolver, as it has an “ammunition-feeding device.”

“Try explaining to your children that they’re never going to see their cousin again,” Schwartz said, hitting the emotional buttons that are essential to restricting Second Amendment rights. “That’s not a conversation that anyone should ever have to make.”

Schwartz said that she believes her nephew — 14-year-old Alex Schachter — might be alive today if Nikolas Cruz did not have access to such a deadly weapon. Cruz killed 17 students and teachers at Parkland as an on-campus Broward County deputy hid outside. Schachter was one of the very first victims of Cruz, so it seems unlikely his life would have been spared if Cruz only had access to non-semi-automatic weapons.

Each mass shooting is used to evoke the necessity of getting guns out of the hands of Americans. A ban on what the media frequently calls “military-style” semi-automatic rifles — which basically means scary looking guns, regardless of relative lethality — has been a goal of gun control advocates nationally since a temporary federal ban expired in 2004.

In Florida, the push has been particularly fierce since the massacre at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, where 49 people were killed in 2016. But school shootings elicit the most emotional response for obvious reasons.

So Florida Democrats have been pushing hard for an assault weapons ban. But they are a minority in the Republican-controlled Legislature and their efforts go nowhere.

Last year Democrats tried to attach an assault weapons ban to the larger school safety bill that was ultimately passed in response to the Parkland shooting, which included armed security on school campuses. But the amendment failed, gaining only two Republican votes.

Help us protect American rights

In fact, Florida Republicans annually consider the opposite direction, proposing bills to allow conceal-carry permit holders to carry on college campuses.

However, a direct-to-voters constitutional amendment bypasses the Legislature. Florida now has a 60 percent threshold for amendments to make it into the state constitution. But last November, all but one proposed amendment met that, and that one had 58 percent. Given the media coverage and the number of mass shootings in the state, it would be foolish to think that such an amendment could not pass.

“I think there is a better chance of getting a citizens initiative on the ballot than getting the current Legislature to seriously entertain an assault weapons ban,” said Florida League of Women Voters President Patricia Brigham. Naturally, the “nonpartisan” League supports the ban.

She is right.

Possibly the larger hurdle is actually getting the proposed amendment on the ballot. That means gathering 766,200 legal signatures, which requires spending several million dollars to paid signature-gathering organizations.

The assault weapons ban campaign collected $439,888 as of the last filing date on Dec. 31. It will take a lot more and the question politically is whether Democrat organizations actually want to ban assault weapons, or whether they prefer to run on the issue of assault weapons so they can keep forcing Republicans to defend assault weapons used in mass shootings.

Polling on the issue in Florida is heavily dependent on the length of time between mass shootings. Right after the Parkland shooting, a Florida Atlantic University poll found that nearly 70 percent of Floridians support an assault weapons ban. But the same poll six months later found only 51 percent favored. How it would fare in the midst of a presidential election during heavy voter turnout is the question.

We may find out.

Rod Thomson is an author, host of Tampa Bay Business with Rod Thomson on the Salem Radio Network, TV commentator and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod also is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Constitution Guns Second Amendment Truth

Venezuela: A Study In The Need For Citizen Gun Rights

by Julio Gonzalez, M.D., J.D.

With all deference to hunters and sportsmen, it wasn’t their right to hunt that inspired James Madison and our nation’s First Congress to include the Second Amendment in their proposed Bill of Rights. There’s was a much greater concern: checking the power of a potentially tyrannical state. The modern left dismisses this argument as nonsensical, superfluous, and yes, even hysterical. They’re wrong.

The right for every American citizen to be armed was designed as a bulwark against tyranny.

But despite its foolish attempts at diminishing the importance of gun ownership as a check on government, the fact remains that the concern was central in the minds of the Framers. Perhaps Noah Webster, that great American scholar and teacher whom we have all come to know by way of his dictionary, put it best when he wrote, “The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops.”

That was the point.

Indeed, history has seen the pattern of gun right suppression in coordination with the rise of tyranny and oppression play out time and again. China, Nazi Germany, communist Cuba, Russia and North Korea are but a few examples. In fact, in keeping with Webster’s observation, the propagation of a dictatorship would be difficult to conceive if imposed upon a well-armed population. And now, as we witness the financial and societal collapse of our distant southern neighbor, it is evident that Venezuela is no exception.

In 2012, Venezuela’s communist National Assembly banned gun ownership. The stated reason for such an intervention is the oft-quoted safety argument. In 2011, 40% of Caracas’s homicides were robbery related with armed robberies accounting for 70% of all major crimes.

Predictably, the government’s call for voluntary disarmament produced virtually no results on safety, leading to the forcible confiscation of 12,603 firearms in 2013 alone.

The result? A rise in violence against police officers, and most ominously, a rise in violence by the state against its own citizens.

In 2015 alone, 252 law enforcement officers were killed in Venezuela. Why? Well, in Venezuela, police officers are targeted for their firearms!

Additionally, when Venezuelans took to the streets to protest the “unjust laws” of which Webster wrote centuries ago, the state used live ammunition to quiet them down. And like Cuba, Maduro’s regime established a group of colectivos, groups of local individuals charged with the implementation and enforcement of Maduro’s policies, except that, in Venezuela, 400,000 of them were officially armed by the state and allowed to “carry out the regime’s rule by violence.”

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And what about the national homicide rate? The rate that the government was trying to reduce? It actually rose from 73 per 100,000 in 2012 right before the ban was implemented to 90 per 100,000 in 2015. In fact, in 2015 Venezuela faced the world’s highest homicide rate with 27,875 murders.

There are elements within our country obsessed with restricting our gun rights. Yes, there are portions of our country in urban areas where gun violence reigns supreme. And yes, the recurrent stories of senseless killings and associated suffering is tragic beyond words. But there is no greater tragedy than a people who once given freedom are robbed of their liberties in pursuit of false assurances of safety and protection.

They will have neither liberty nor safety.

Truly, Madison was not thinking of our right to hunt when he penned our Second Amendment. He was thinking of much more ominous possibilities, the same eventualities that inspired Thomas Jefferson to proclaim, “it is [our] right and [our] duty to be at all times armed.”

Dr. Julio Gonzalez is an orthopaedic surgeon and lawyer living in Venice, Florida. He is the author of The Federalist Pages and cohost of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod. Dr. Gonzalez is presently serving in the Florida House of Representatives. He can be reached through www.thefederalistpages.com to arrange a lecture or book signing.


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Constitution Guns Second Amendment Trump Truth

Bump Stock Ban Broken Down: Unconstitutional And Futile

by Julio Gonzalez, M.D., J.D.

Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.  
Benjamin Franklin

On December 10, 2018, the Department of Justice published its final rule regarding a bump stock ban in the United States. (The rule can be found at the The Federalist Pages Library section, along with the NRA’s comments on the proposed rule.) The DOJ arrived at this prohibition by holding that bump stocks are machine guns under the definitions of such weapons contained in 27 C.F.R. §§ 447.11, 478.11, and 479.11. But even if DOJ were to have the authority to enact this regulation, the rule would serve only to further threaten American citizens with excessive regulatory restraints while not having a chance at achieving its stated purpose.

A constitutional government of enumerated powers ought not pass any law that falls outside the ambit of those authorities given to it, nor those that do not serve to improve society. As such, even if we decide that a government is authorized to pass a law, that authorization is nullified by the futility of the act. Such is the case here.

First, Congress is arguably entitled to pass a bump stock ban under the Second Amendment.

A valid argument can be made that Congress possesses the authority under the Constitution to pass a bump stock ban. Although some argue the Second Amendment to the Constitution prohibits Congress from banning bump stocks, in point of fact, a stronger argument holds that such a prohibition does not apply to firearm accessories, which bump stocks clearly are.

In banning bump stocks, the DOJ claims it is merely interpreting the definitions of “machine gun” contained in 27 C.F.R. §§ 447.11, 478.11, and 479.11. Because it does not include a provision addressing parts of a machine gun, 27 C.F.R. § 447.11 could not be construed to include a bump stock, but 27 C.F.R. §§ 478.11 & 479.11 do. They define a machine gun as “any weapon, which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun, and any combination of parts from which a machine gun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under control of a person.”

Clearly, bump stocks may not be included within the first part of the definitions of “machine gun,” but bump stocks are designed solely and exclusively for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun.

Of course, there is an inconsistency in using the term machine gun within the definition of machine gun, as doing so implies that what is being described is not a machine gun, but something else — which is then modified to act as a machine gun. As we shall see, the flawed design of the machine gun definition brings up some legal difficulties.

Because it could reasonably be argued that Congress intended to include bump stocks within its definition of machine gun, which would mean the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives would have the authority to regulate them, and DOJ would have the congressional authority to ban them.

But oddly, by calling a bump stock a machine gun, DOJ opens the door to Second Amendment jurisdiction. Governments have argued their authorities to regulate magazines, bullets, and other firearm attachments are not subject to Second Amendment restrictions because these are not “arms” as referenced in the Second Amendment, but rather accessories to arms.

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However, in order to avail itself of the congressional authority to regulate bump stocks, DOJ has found it necessary to call bump stocks machine guns, which are firearms, thus opening the door to Second Amendment challenges.

Even if the judiciary takes up the charge of considering bump stocks machine guns in the full sense of the word, the question of whether it would find that regulating bump stocks runs afoul of the Second Amendment is a separate matter.

Interestingly, it was not until the District of Columbia v. Heller case of 2008 that the Supreme Court defined those weapons protected by the Second Amendment. Here, the Court ruled that it was weapons “in common use,” that were protected. Although little question exists that bump stocks are “in common use,” the Court also reminded us that Congress could ban “dangerous and unusual weapons.”

Notice, the phrase is not dangerous or unusual, but dangerous and unusual, forcing the government to show that bump stocks are both if it were to defend its authority to prohibit them. What the courts would rule if it would accept the invitation to consider bump stocks as actual firearms rather than accessories remains to be seen.

Countering this position is the lack of meaningful uses for bump stocks, which are used to increase the speed with which a weapon is fired, but most gun experts say that bump stocks are worthless items that only serve to diminish the accuracy of the weapon, and they are not advocated for use in hunting, or even as a valid enhancement to one’s self-defense. As such, it would be a very easy bar for the advocate to clear in arguing the superfluousness of such items and therefore, the lack of any meaningful intrusion on individual liberties in banning them.

One could also argue that a bump stock is not a machine gun. This is inherently true, of course, as a bump stock could not, by itself, fire a bullet. If a bump stock is not a machine gun, then DOJ’s reliance on 27 C.F.R. §§ 478.11 & 479.11 would get thrown out as nonsensical. Frankly speaking, such would be the honest assessment and the most appropriate outcome of a true evaluation of the language of the governing statutes.

However, it is equally clear that Congress, despite the grammatical impossibility of its definition, intended to include articles such as bump stocks in its regulatory scheme. A court would likely stick to the intent of the statute rather than engage in wordplay on such a politically charged issue. Of course, should the court decide not to make an issue of the incongruity of the definition of machine gun, it would immediately force itself to address the Second Amendment issues noted above; an inescapable Hobson’s choice

Is Congress’s ban prohibited by the broader Constitution?

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There is yet another, more fundamental argument to be made against the validity of a congressional ban: it might not be allowed by the Constitution itself.  Until now, our constitutional considerations have centered on whether Congress may ban bump stocks under the Second Amendment.  Indeed, the greater question is whether Congress was ever given the authority to do so under the broader Constitution.

The federal government is one of enumerated powers. If a power employed by Congress in passing a law is not contained in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution; it cannot possess the authority to enact it, and there is no provision in the Constitution allowing Congress to ban bump stocks. Even the interstate commerce clause would not allow Congress to ban it.

That Congress was not given the authority in Article I to ban items is a well-founded contention as the Framers did not intend to create a federal government that could ban such things, leaving it to the states to do so instead. To be sure, the Article I powers contained in the Constitution have been expanded by the interstate commerce clause, but even if the interstate commerce clause were to be employed in Congress’s defense of regulating bump stocks, such powers would allow Congress to prohibit the interstate transport and sale of such items, not their intrastate possession.

Sadly, though, the train allowing Congress to intrude in such intrastate activities has long since left the station and delivering such an argument before a federal magistrate would be met with nothing other than hostility.

In the most practical sense, regulating bump stocks would likely not help.

Despite these valid arguments, many of which are addressed in DOJ’s final rule announcement, the most basic argument against banning bump stock lies in its futility. Recall that according to the legal theory leading to the creation of our government, the burden is upon the authorities to show that the rule or law passed is within the ambit of its authorities and purposeful in addressing a societal problem.

Assuming appropriate authority — which we questioned above — would banning bump stocks help solve a societal problem?

The discussion about banning bump stocks was brought back to the forefront of the nation’s political discussion after the horrible massacre of 2017 in Las Vegas. There, bump stocks were used to convert semiautomatic weapons to automatics and spray over 1,100 rounds from the 43d floor of a hotel onto concert goers assembled across the street. Fifty-eight people were killed that night and another 851 were injured, 422 from gunshot wounds.

Immediately, gun control advocates, knowing that they would not easily be able to ban semiautomatic weapons, focused their attention on bump stocks. Although bump stocks were not employed in the February 14, 2018, Parkland shooting, that massacre reinvigorated the call for a ban, one that President Trump adopted. By March 2018, DOJ had published its proposed rule.

But such a ban will not have any effect on preventing or lessening these massacres.

First, massacres can and often do take place without the use of semiautomatic weapon converters. Not only did the Parkland shooter not employ bump stocks, but also the later massacre in a California nightclub where 13 were killed was carried out with great effectiveness with a handheld semiautomatic. Similarly, the Pulse Club shooting in Orlando that killed 49 people did not include bump stocks.

Federal authorities do not know how many bump stocks exist in the United States although DOJ estimates that there are anywhere between 280,000 and 520,000 in circulation. There is no record of who owns these accessories, making it impossible for DOJ to chase them down. Additionally, the rule relies primarily on the voluntary destruction of bump stocks to remove them from circulation. Here, we can learn from the experiences of the few states that have passed bump stock bans. In New Jersey, its bump stock return program has produced exactly zero bump stocks to authorities. And in Massachusetts, its program has delivered three.

Moreover, a semiautomatic rifle can be converted to fire automatically by using as many methods as imaginative minds can conjure, making conversion a relatively simple affair, bump stock or not.

Even Jeremy Stein, the President of Connecticut Against Gun Violence and coauthor of the Connecticut bump stock bill called the legislation ineffective at solving gun violence problems and said the effort at banning bump stocks was “symbolic.” In addition, The Wall Street Journal said enforcement would be “a challenge.”

So the strongest argument in favor of passing anti-bump stock legislation is the invalid symbolism contention and the argument against it is the indisputable futility charge, and possible unconstitutionality.

But the rule gets enacted anyway, which brings us to the heart of the issue. Government should not be engaged in the practice of knowingly passing ineffective legislation, and we the people should not be allowing it to do so.

Yet, they do; and we do. And therein lies the crux of our problem.

Dr. Julio Gonzalez is an orthopaedic surgeon and lawyer living in Venice, Florida. He is the author of The Federalist Pages and cohost of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod. Dr. Gonzalez is presently serving in the Florida House of Representatives. He can be reached through www.thefederalistpages.com to arrange a lecture or book signing.


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Democrats Guns Immigration Socialism Trump Truth

The Democrats’ 5-Point Pitch For Voters Summed Up

Rod Thomson

Remove all of the nonsense spun up daily by the media, peel back the coverage spin, and what is revealed is a series of five Democratic positions that are, not to put too fine a point on it: Absurd and unpopular.

And most Americans find them to be absurd, damaging, crazy, annoying or all of these.

Of course, the shifting polls are showing this. As Americans are paying more attention to political positions and actions, particularly those swing voters who are not too involved with politics generally but who will vote in November, we’re seeing a swing toward more Republican support.

The GOP is now broadly thought to be able to pick up two to three Senate seats, after the Democrat-Media Establishment made a real push to retake the Senate. And the House, which was at one point a foregone conclusion to flip Democratic because of normal midterm responses to the party in power, the (former) unpopularity of the President, and the polls, now appears to be in play with the actual possibility that Republicans could maintain control.

The violence done by Democrats against the bedrock American principle of a presumption of innocence and concept of fairness during the Kavanaugh hearings certainly pushed some swing voters away from Democrats. And the roaring economy surely is moving politically middle Americans toward Republicans.

But the actual issues Democrats are running on are also driving away those in the middle as they actually become aware of them.

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Here’s a quick look at those:

  • TRUMP: The primary animating issue Democrats have led with in their agenda is fueled by Trump hatred, and it means stopping, investigating, crippling and if possible removing Trump. But most Americans don’t really want that. And this shows. Despite the ongoing onslaught of negative reporting on President Trump by the media and the daily drumbeat of criticism, Americans feel pretty good about the country and the direction of the country. Astonishingly, given the comparative media coverage, Trump’s approval rating is now at an all-time high of 47 percent — two points above President Obama’s at this exact same point coming up on the midterms.
  • IMMIGRATION: In a nation with more than 20 million illegal aliens, and a massive caravan of now 14,000 Guatemalans and other foreigners marching toward the U.S. southern border (“coincidentally” right at election time,) the Democrats want to abolish the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. This is deeply unpopular because it is rightly seen as deeply stupid and counterproductive. Democrats fight every effort to secure the border and to control immigration. In practice, they are pushing for de facto open borders. Again, a disastrous policy in a country with generous welfare provisions. This general open-border stance, along with the abolishment of ICE, is overwhelmingly opposed by the American people.
  • MEDICARE: Democrats are in the starting gates and ready to bust out to spin up a quick $20 trillion entitlement called “Medicare for All,” which will not only be more than $20 trillion, but which would rob those who worked a lifetime and contributed to Medicare — while buying their own health care insurance — of true Medicare coverage when their turn comes. It would throw everyone into government healthcare, grind to a halt medical innovation in this country (which means medical innovation in the world,) require crippling tax increases and end with rationed care. This last part is why older people, who had paid in through their lifetimes, would not receive the level of care they paid for others to receive. Basically, it destroys Medicare. When American voters understand this, the polls turn sharply.
  • SOCIALISM: The Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez wing of the Democratic Party is promoting the idea of Democratic Socialism, a colossal expansion of the welfare state in which Medicare for All is only a portion, and would require the nationalization of the healthcare industry and much more, and of course massive tax increases. Millennials may not fully grasp the destruction this would wreak on the American economy and American way of life, but most voters do.
  • GUNS: Democrats not running in red districts or states have given up on the 2nd Amendment. Their efforts at banning undefinable “assault weapons” and attempts to whittle away at Americans’ gun rights have now turned into an increasingly full-throated call to repeal the 2nd Amendment. Yes, repeal it. Americans are very divided on assault weapons, particularly after an egregious mass shooting. But there is little support for ridding the U.S. Constitution of the 2nd Amendment.

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When the unpopularity of these five points are combined with the #walkaway movement and the shift in black voters’ support for President Trump, it suggests that the vaunted blue wave may never materialize — media hyperventilating aside. And part of it will actually be policy-based.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Guns Media Schools Second Amendment Truth

Why The Santa Fe Shooting Disappeared From Headlines So Quickly

Rod Thomson

Something strange happened within a few days of the mass shooting at Santa Fe High School that killed 10 people and injured 14 others.

The story virtually disappeared from the news cycle. This is quite a remarkable change from the weeks of non-stop media coverage after the Parkland, Florida shooting that resulted in huge protests around the country and bad legislation in Florida.

First, there are a lot of similarities in the two atrocities. The killer in both instances was a mentally disturbed, bullied teenage boy who had shown warning signs. However, it is well-documented that in Parkland, law enforcement and school officials (government) missed or purposely overlooked dozens of red flags regarding the killer that could have prevented the killings.

Seventeen people were killed in Parkland. Ten were killed in Santa Fe. Both are located in conservative states with strong Second Amendment protections, although Texas is more conservative. Both have happened during a time of rampant but factually ill-founded fears of school shootings, and a media that has an anti-gun agenda it pushes shamelessly — including the use of grieving teenage survivors.

So what are the differences? Three stand out.

One, the gun that the Parkland killer used was an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle. It is what the media insists on calling an “assault weapon,” without ever really explaining or describing what is meant by the term. It’s scary looking and appears similar to military assault weapons. But it is the same as any semi-automatic rifle or pistol. One shot per trigger pull.

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In Santa Fe, the killer used a .38-caliber revolver and a shotgun — not the infamous “assault rifles.” There is very little support among Americans for banning revolvers or shotguns. So that was one big difference.

The second is that the Parkland killer was never stopped. Officers stayed outside and did nothing while he continued to massacre people. He just finally quit murdering and walked away from his school slaughter, later being arrested at a fast food restaurant.

In Santa Fe, men with guns stopped the killer. The teen was cornered in a room by armed school security until more police arrived and he surrendered.

A final difference is in the community and the students. Parkland is in the heavily urbanized, liberal, anti-gun corridor of Southeast Florida, from Miami through Fort Lauderdale to West Palm. The students there reflect that urbanized sense of guns as frightening, and really do not seem to grasp the purpose of the Second Amendment. They came out very strong for gun laws and the media ate it up and national, liberal organizations quickly organized them.

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Santa Fe is a semi-rural area of Southern Texas between Houston and Galveston. The people there see guns as part of the culture and have a more ingrained understanding of why there is a Second Amendment. For instance, almost no Santa Fe students participated in the national school walkout in March.

Here is Alex Carvey, 16, a student at Santa Fe High School:

“I don’t think guns are the problem — I think people are the problem,” she said. “Even if we did more gun laws, people who are sick enough to do something like this are still going to figure out a way to do it. So it doesn’t matter.”

So the differences in coverage seem to be based at least somewhat on how it plays into the media narrative of blaming the NRA and gun owners and pushing for more gun control laws. Parkland — despite the myriad failures of government along the way, plays nicely into that narrative.

Santa Fe doesn’t really fit narrative.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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