Gun Non-Violence

I served in the Army. During my time as a soldier, I engaged in violence, and much of it involved the use of firearms. In the decades since I left the Army, I’ve been involved in several tense situations which could have escalated to violence but did not. In each case, the threat was terminated when the other party or parties realized that I was armed, and that the cost/benefit ratio of engaging with me was less favorable than had been expected. My having a gun resulted in non-violent ends to those encounters.

Not every bad guy will weigh the odds the same way, sometimes deterrence will fail, and force will have to be met with force, but so far, deterrence has worked for me.

Being armed isn’t for everyone, but it has its advantages for those willing to undertake the responsibility.

OK, You’re Crazy

Found on The Twitterz—

If you think it’s easier to buy a gun than to vote, you’re so detached from Reality that you qualify as crazy.

The last time I voted, I didn’t have to complete an ATF Form 4473 under penalty of perjury, nor did I have to submit to an FBI background check in order to receive my ballot.

And I have family members in Chicago who don’t even have to be alive to vote.

I’m Not Making This Up, You Know

Sheila Jackson Lee really said this—

I’ve held an AR-15 in my hand, I wish I had it. It is as heavy as 10 boxes that you might be moving and the bullet that is utilized, a .50-caliber, these kinds of bullets need to be licensed and do not need to be on the street.

I just weighed my AR-15. With the sling and a loaded magazine it weighs just under 9 pounds. Rep. Lee must have been moving empty boxes.

Although my rifle is chambered for 7.62×39 mm ammunition, most AR-15s are chambered for 5.56 mm NATO rounds. Only a handful use any kind of .50 ammo, and most of those are chambered for .50 Beowulf, a cartridge roughly equivalent to the old black powder .45/70 used by the Army during the last decades of the 19th-century.

UPDATE—Lee’s proposed legislation would ban weapons greater than .50 calibre. Guess what, Gentle Reader. They are already restricted under federal law as destructive devices. However, the law allows the ATF to exempt weapons and ammunition for “sporting purposes” which is why 28, 20, 16, 12, and 10 gauge shotguns are still legal. Is Lee seeking to ban the double-barrel shotguns that Joe Xiden recommends for personal defense in the home?

A Second Amendment Victory

The ATF has backed down in the face of overwhelming negative public comment and substantial Congressional pressure and is withdrawing its proposed “guidance” relating to pistols equipped with arm braces. The ATF posted the following:

Upon further consultation with the Department of Justice and the Office of the Deputy Attorney General, ATF is withdrawing, pending further Department of Justice review, the notice and request for comments entitled “Objective Factors for Classifying Weapons with ‘Stabilizing Braces’,” that was published on December 18, 2020. 85 FR 82516. As explained in the notice, the proposed guidance was not a regulation. The notice informed and invited comment from the industry and public on a proposed guidance prior to issuing a final guidance document.

The withdrawal of the guidance does not change any law, regulation, or other legally binding requirement.

Over 48,000 public comments had been received in less than a week, and over 90 Representatives and Senators (including Cocaine Mitch) had contacted the ATF questioning the legal basis for the guidance.

Given the substantial number of new gun owners over the past year, it will be interesting to see how much political capital the Xiden administration is willing to spend on suppression of Second Amendment rights.

Looks Like Self Defense To Me

Massad Ayoob has a post up about the video evidence surrounding Kyle Rittenhouse’s use of a rifle to defend himself in Kenosha. The photo at the top of the post clearly shows the assailant who Rittenhouse shot in the arm pointing a pistol at the young man’s head. A few milliseconds difference in timing would have put a bullet though the teenager’s head instead of the bad guy’s arm.

Biden Voters v. Trump Voters

Various sites around the Interwebz are using the term “Biden voters” to describe the thugs engaging in BLM and Antifa rioting. I have another post about why I think this is not a strictly accurate term.

OTOH, there seem to be a large number of folks in the country who have been mugged by reality, but when they tried to call the cops, they found that they were on their own. Nearly 5,000,000 of them have now become gun owners, and lots of them are in swing states. Almost a quarter of a million in Pennsylvania, for instance. That’s resulted a significant increase in the percentage of households with firearms. With that in mind, consider these maps.As a first guess, let’s assume that the 80/20 rule applies and that roughly 4,000,000 new voters are now associated with map on the right. That would tend to sustain Trump’s majorities in the rust belt states, and it would tend to flip Minnesota and Virginia to Trump. It could also produce a shift in the popular vote that would wipe out the 2016 gap.

Don’t get cocky or go off half-cocked.

Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!

Well, only one tiger. Glenn Reynolds has a link to a report that the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency is leading the search for a tiger that was spotted by a deputy sheriff in Knox County. The professor adds, “Tiger shows up at my house, he’s a rug.”

One of the neighborhoods where I lived in California had a problem with mountain lions. They were usually dispatched by a deputy using a 12 ga shotgun firing slugs. Mountain lions were also a problem where I used to hike in the Cleveland National Forest. I never hit the trail there without a suitably powerful handgun. I prefer to remain at the top of the food chain.

The post at Instapundit got me thinking about what I might have in my locker suitable for converting a tiger into a rug. 12 ga or even 20 ga slugs would probably do the job, but I think I would reach for my .45/70 lever action rifle. It will stop a large bear, so it should be adequate for a tiger, and I’m more confident with my ability to take a fast precision shot with it than with a shotgun

Ammunition Blues

It’s getting very hard to find practice ammo to use with some of my firearms. All the common calibers are in short supply. While I have reasonable quantities of 20 ga., .38 Special, .45 ACP, and 7.62 x 51 mm rounds on hand, I’ve deleted my stocks to the point that I’m now using other calibers for practice, .243 Win, .30 Carbine, .and .45 Colt, but mostly .22 LR. If the .22 stash runs low, I have a couple of bricks of .22 Short ammo and an old High Standard target pistol chambered for it. I may be using my 16 ga. for hunting this fall.

Which brings me to the point of this post: If you’re buying a firearm, also buy several hundred rounds of practice ammunition at the same time, and use that ammo to familiarize yourself with the new gun and verify that it functions properly. (And cleaning the gun after using it will help you understand how it works, so buy a cleaning kit too.) If you can’t buy enough ammunition for that introductory practice, you probably should buy a different gun.

If it’s your first gun or if it’s been a long time since you handled firearms, get training in safe gun handling. I recommend the NRA’s Home Firearm Safety Course or you state’s Hunter Safety Course. The online version of these courses will give you good information, but proper hands-on instruction will give you a better opportunity to practice safe handling skills.

Finally, make sure you have what is necessary (slings, holsters, storage boxes, or lockers) to safely carry and store your firearm.

Warning Shots?

It’s being reported that when rioters tried to move into a residential area of Kenosha, at least one person fired warning shots at them. I was afraid this sort of thing would happen.

It’s understandable that an armed citizen would attempt to repel rioters entering his neighborhood. However, one should not use deadly force irresponsibly, and in almost every instance so called “warning shots” are not justified.

First, a fired bullet is going hit someone or something. A random shot can kill or injure a bystander or do unintended damage. The person pulling the trigger would be responsible.

Second, deadly force is only morally and (IANAL, but lawyers tell me) legally justified in response to an imminent threat of death or serious injury. If deadly force must be used, it must be applied only to the actual threat.

Third, pointing a gun at someone else is an assault. One shouldn’t do it except in response to an actual threat.

I was taught—first by my father, a lawyer with law enforcement experience, and later in the Army—to keep a firearm holstered or pointed in a safe direction until there was no choice left but to open fire. I was also taught that because shooting someone is a use of deadly force, choosing to shot implies shooting to kill. Not to warn. To kill.

It looks as if things are about to get very messy.

Today is yet another day when I wish things weren’t proceeding as I have foreseen.

A Civil Rights Victory

James O’Keefe, III, went to buy a firearm a few days ago, and the transaction was denied when he failed the NICS background check. The FBI’s database had him flagged as a felon, but he’s never been convicted of a felony. O’Keefe sued the FBI. Townhall reports that the FBI has rather expeditiously corrected their error and removed him from the list of prohibited persons.

An Unintended Side Effect to 2020: The Ninth Circuit Gets One Right

The AP reports that the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has ruled that California’s ban on standard-capacity magazines for firearms is unconstitutional.

This puts the Ninth Circuit in opposition to several others including the Fourth which upheld Maryland’s ban.

Less Lethal Advice

Several people have asked me for advice about buying a gun. The best general advice I can give on the subject is to take proper firearm safety training (such as the NRA Safety Course or your state’s hunter safety course) prior to buying a gun. In the course of that training you’ll learn material that will help you decide what might work best for you.

It’s also a good idea to have some kind of “less lethal” (what that term really means is less likely to kill than a firearm, but still dangerous) means of self defense available for use when deadly force isn’t absolutely necessary. One tool that I’ve adopted is the Kimber PepperBlaster II. It looks like a firearm, but it isn’t. It can project a blast of pepper spray and dye about 13 ft, and it holds two charges of spray. It’s available from Amazon.

It’s small enough to slip into a trouser pocket or purse, but I don’t recommend carrying it without some sort of holster which protects the trigger. (Imagine a pepper spray blast going off by surprise in your pocket or purse.) I carry mine in an Uncle Mike’s Size 3 Pocket Holster. It’s an excellent fit.

Remember, force offered in response to an attack should be proportionate to the danger the attack creates. There are times when deadly force is called for, but there are also times when it isn’t. It’s wise to be prepared to respond appropriately.

Finally, check your local laws and obey them.

Certain Sections That I Wouldn’t Advise You to Invade

As I’m drinking my second cup of coffee this morning, I’m finding pictures on the Interwebz of an armed couple confronting a BLM mob outside of their house. This may become a more common scene as the ongoing marxist lunacy tries to metastasize to the interior of the country.

While Rick Blaine’s advice to a couple of totalitarian thugs may no longer apply in New York, it still holds true in most of America.

It’s even true in certain parts of Maryland.

Prediction: Some Busy Days at NICS

The past couple of months have seen a significant increase in background checks for firearm purchases as a large number of first-time gun buyers decided to exercise their Second Amendment rights just in case things get out of control because of the Wuhan virus pandemic.

I’ve got a hunch that there may be a sizable number of additional first-time buyers going to gun stores over the next few weeks with a new-found understanding of why those stores are essential businesses—and that they may develop a changed attitude about their states’ waiting periods for gun purchases.

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

Politics makes strange bedfellows. How else can one explain Brett Kimberlin’s use of not-for-profits to support gun control? The TKPOTD for seven years ago today took note of that irony.

* * * * *

Brett Kimberlin received a 50 year sentence for his conviction for using explosives to cause injury. He has claimed that his conviction was based on evidence manufactured by the ATF. Here’s what Mark Singer concluded about Kimberlin’s claim as recorded in the Appendix of Citizen K (p. 377):

To believe that Kimberlin’s conviction represented a widespread effort to frame him required the postulation of a sophisticated, ingenious, and illegal network of his enemies—nothing less, it seemed, than a “conspiracy per se.” Sometime the ingenuity with which Kimberlin credited the ATF specifically seemed too generous. For instance, on 20 September 1978, the day of Kimberlin’s arrest and the impounding of the Impala, the ATF agents involved in the search did not have the lab results from the bomb scenes. If the government had wanted to lace the Impala, they would’ve needed to guess exactly which substance—Tovex, that is, not dynamite or TNT—would link Kimberlin to the bombings. Additionally, the ATF was unlikely to have known that Kimberlin was using Tovex to excavate his property three years earlier.

It’s interesting that, although Brett Kimberlin doesn’t trust the ATF to honorably deal with crime scene evidence, he is campaigning through his NRA Watch website to increase the ATF’s gun control authority.

Go figure.

* * * * *

Most of the NRA members I know aren’t the sort of people who would contribute to one of Kimberlin’s not-for-profits. Follow th money.

They’re Not Gonna Like Their New Rules …

… or at lest, Chuck Schumer won’t if one of those New Rules is enforced against him as it would be enforced against a Deporable.

The Minority Leader made remarks earlier this week that most rational people (and even some Democrats) found to be threats against two Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, Neal Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. Based on those remarks, the Second Amendment civil rights organization Gun Owners of America has sent a letter to New York Governor Cuomo seeking a Temporary Extreme Risk Protection Order (Red Flag Order) against Senator Schumer.

I hate say it, but I’m betting against equal justice under law in this case.

A Civil Rights Victory in Virginia

HB961 was the Democrats’ prime bill in a package of anti-Second-Amendment legislation they were threatening to pass after gaining control of both houses of the Virginia legislature. It would have banned many common firearms and standard-capacity magazines. It’s been tabled for until next year by the state Senate Judiciary Committee because four Democrats broke ranks and voted with Republicans.

I suspect that those Democrats took notice of two facts. First, the vast majority of the states counties have joined the Second Amendment Sanctuary movement. The odds are the four who voted with the Republicans represent sanctuary counties.

Second, the Democrats just barely took control of the legislature. Something on the order of 6,000 votes statewide would have kept the Republicans in charge, so there are a lot of potentially vulnerable Democrats outside of the DC suburbs.

BTW, I’ve heard a rumor that Governor Blackface has promised to keep the bill comfortable until a final decision on aborting it is taken.