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Old August 19, 2009, 01:53 AM   #226
azredhawk44
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He's not from Arizona, can't vote there, and doesn't seem to have an opinion about the matter being bandied about in that particular forum, which had nothing to do with the 2nd Amendment. Health care, not guns, was the issue.
Chris (the black fellow with the AR) IS from Arizona, I have seen his AZ driver's license and CCW permit. He is most certainly eligible to vote here.

He certainly has an opinion about health care... the media chose to focus on the gun issue instead of his anti fedgov health care message. He had no control over that.
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Old August 19, 2009, 02:08 AM   #227
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He did say he was from " . . . another state that allows OC but harasses people. . .", but I guess he meant a previous resident of another state. You are saying he is from AZ, at least now he is.
In the interviews I saw, he didn't talk about the gun much at all, seemed focused on tax issues and government takeovers.
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It is impossible for the introduction of a weapon at a peaceful political event not to be seen as intimidating.
Impossible for some. Entirely possible for others. I didn't see a single person in any footage running for cover, or shrinking in fear. If anyone was truly intimidated by that weapon, they are the bravest group of people I have ever seen.
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Moreover, it is impossible for people to believe that the person with the weapon is not trying to intimidate.
Again, impossible for some. Entirely possible for others, like all of the people in that footage, for example.
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Adding an AR15 to your political speech is not innocuous. It's a statement.
Of course it is, and statements, being definitively speech, are protected. I'm not sure there is a meaningful distinction between exercising a right and making a statement while exercising the right. You either have the right or you don't. Whatever other lawful behavior you are engaged in while lawfully exercising the right is irrelevant. The only question is: Is it wise, and does it help our cause? The only way for his behavior to fall outside of 1a and 2A protection, would be to announce a threat or actually threaten by pointing the weapon. He went out of his way to do neither.

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Old August 19, 2009, 08:00 AM   #228
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I think it is funny that people, including GUN people think that bringing a gun to a political rally is a threat of violence, and they miss the irony when they see this at the same rally:




and then they see this:



but the guy minding his own business is somehow seen as a restriction on liberty and an attempt at intimidation, while the threat of government force is not.
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Old August 19, 2009, 08:52 AM   #229
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Originally Posted by maestro pistolero
Even among friends who know, love and trust me implicitly, there is a sort of shocked blank stare when a person sees a real firearm for the first time. It is a kind of awe, mixed with fear, uncertainty and a little fascination.

No widespread renaissance of the second amendment can truly happen until we get better at understanding and managing that fear. For one thing, it's not totally unreasonable fear. Firearms are deadly weapons. Combined that fact with unfamiliarity, and a person would have to be brain dead if not a little apprehensive.
Well said, MP.

Over the years, the bulk of the country has lost familiarity with firearms. An atrophy of this knowledge led to an apathy towards the 2A right our country's founders gave us. And then the 2A became a political platform issue and things really went down the toilet.

This is much bigger than folks being shocked by someone open carrying at a presidential town hall. The roots of this debate are directly planted in our country's inability to get off the couch, turn off the boob tube and wake up.
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Old August 19, 2009, 09:29 AM   #230
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the guy minding his own business is somehow seen as a restriction on liberty and an attempt at intimidation, while the threat of government force is not.
Precisely. If they can show theirs, and nobody is intimidated or outraged, why can we not show ours and have the same effect?

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This is much bigger than folks being shocked by someone open carrying at a presidential town hall. The roots of this debate are directly planted in our country's inability to get off the couch, turn off the boob tube and wake up.
Again, Spot-on ! At the same time that some are taking a stand, and exercising their rights in an attempt to broaden the lexicon, others have a litany of excuses not to.

It boggles the mind to consider that; At a time when our elected officials are basically "giving the finger" to "We The People" on a vast array of issues, that our rights and civil liberties might not be the next thing they decide to thumb their noses at. I applaud the efforts folks are taking to "make a statement" and I plan to get off the bench and support the cause in any way possible.

Whether you believe that these peoples actions are right, wrong, or indifferent, there is no denying that they have made a bold statement.
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Old August 19, 2009, 09:33 AM   #231
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To answer a previous question - does the simple presence of a firearm imply violence?

Since this has been intensively studied and well within my area of expertise - the answer is simply that it does for a significant number of people.

For folks with firearms knowledge the effect is not so great and has a little more contextual nuances. Go to the Polite Society next year and hear my presentation.

That's my point - for those outside the choir - the presence of the firearm does imply violence and prime negative attitudes. Then, if this is the case - does this display of firearms actually aid in achieving some political goal?

If you want to carry the day in public opinion you need to consider this. Making a statement that is within your rights but counterproductive may not be worth it - unless - losing the day but feeling good is your long term goal.

Oh, got my American Rifleman yesterday - it pointed out that 23 states have passed Castle Law bills. So I repeat my point that the wheels of democracy can turn in our direction as compared to the belly up cries of helplessness in the face of the MEDIA!!!
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Old August 19, 2009, 10:51 AM   #232
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I also join in the opinion that parading around with firearms at a political event is contrary to what our country stands for: peaceful democracy
Sorry but this nation is not a peaceful democracy! It is a republic which is far different from a democracy. If it were a democracy, the loudest crybaby gets his way so long as he convinces a majority it is good. In a republic it must be proven to be best for all no matter what the cry babies say. Democracy brought down the roman empire!
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Old August 19, 2009, 10:58 AM   #233
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Ok, the wheels of the Republic can turn in our direction - Brent.

As far as cry babies - turn off talk radio and then you won't hear them so much!
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Old August 19, 2009, 12:02 PM   #234
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Glenn, I don't listen to talk radio... Used to years ago and when I quit, my blood pressure went right down

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Old August 19, 2009, 02:25 PM   #235
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That's my point - for those outside the choir - the presence of the firearm does imply violence and prime negative attitudes. Then, if this is the case - does this display of firearms actually aid in achieving some political goal?
(At this point, let's say that we are talking specifically about open carry; CC means that the public, in general, would not even realize that a firearm enters into the equation.)

Would you say that the public, in general, would have the same "negative attitudes" toward government employees with firearms; i.e. law enforcement, armed forces, USSS, etc...?

If the public, in general, has a different reaction to this group, then it is not necessarily the firearm that is creating the impression, rather the appearance of the carrier.

Let's take the photo of the "men in black" on the balcony in a posting above. Most would assume that these are USSS (or the like), given the context of the event. Now would John and Joan Q Public feel differently if they found out that these were just a couple of guys that lived in that apartment cleaning their "sniper rifles" out on the balcony that day? And were pointing them at the crowd, just to bore sight in a new scope.

In my mind the real issue here goes beyond the actual 2nd Amendment. (Yes, we have the right.) The issue goes beyond the political machine that can restrict, and free up, our gun laws. (Yes, government and politics do enter into the equation.) The real issue here is appearance to the average Joe and Josephine.

Because, if the average citizen feels (and I use this word purposefully) that a firearm with another average citizen is O.K., or better than O.K., then all is well with respect to RKBA.

Do I like this? Personally no. For example: a number of years ago I was involved with an educational project. Our group was attempting to produce essentially an informercial type short video to introduce our project. After much work, research, and testing, we found that talking about dinner right off captured the attention and produced more positive "feelings" and associations with our project than introducing the topic and the importance of the material. Our project now had the appearance of "warm-fuzzies-full-tummy". This project had absolutely nothing to do with dinner or eating or food for that matter.

BUT (Behold the Underlying Truth) we remained true to the nature and intention of the project throughout. "Dinner" in no way took away from, or conflicted with, the intent of the project. And in the both day to day and long run it added positively to the end result.

Appearance is what we need to work at. Firearms associated with the average citizen must appear to be "normal", "good", "responsible", etc... We want the average John and Jane Q Public to have those same "warm-fuzzies-full-tummy" feelings when seeing open carry. At the same time we must never do anything that would promote this that would in any way detract from our beliefs and support of the 2nd Amendment. No compromises.

While I personally do not like this, I believe it. I do not like that to promote an educational project that one must resort to introducing it with "Dinner". But then again, the average American spends more time in front of a screen than any other activity daily, and most of that is in front of a television. (Really think about that for a minute. More time than at work, sleeping, school, etc...) This is who we are working with. These are our neighbors that we must convince to "feel good" about the RKBA.

There is a reason that those opposing the RKBA use fear in their arguments. As silly as it may sound, we must use love (warm-fuzzies-full-tummies) in our arguments.

Just my .22 cents worth. (Inflation and long posting.)
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Old August 19, 2009, 02:39 PM   #236
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Look, all this is crap. The simple question is this:

Does the presense of a man with an Ar slung over his shoulder, or another man with a pistol in a "tacticool" rig and carrying a sign that explicity implies the spilling of tyrant's blood (chosen for it's maximum visibility, I'm sure. That same gun in a simple belt hoslter would not have made as good a picture) HELP the gun issue or hurt it?

For me, as a gunowner, I say it HURTS. People who post on these types of forum are the minority. I have several friends who own guns and target shoot who don't post on gun forums.

To the average, law abiding citizen, those two men (and there will be MANY more who are now embolded by them) make us look bad. I have many pictures of me and my friends at the shooting range. We're strapped down with guns. It's Ok because it's a shooting range! It is not the middle of a public street.

We take 2 steps forward, and boobs like these guys knock us 3 steps back. One guy blinks and stuuters into the camera while wearing a yellow t-shirt despite being told of his interview ahead of time, and the other looks like Malcolm X!

Know what's gonna happen now? These two guys lives will be explored since they thrust themselves into the spotlight. ANY anti-American affiliations will be brought to light. And the left will use them just like they did Joe the Plumber.
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Old August 19, 2009, 02:51 PM   #237
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Look, all this is crap.
Take a second and think about who you are talking to on this forum. There are quite a number of really thoughtful and thought provoking replies. Not to mention, that "all" would include any of your previous posts.
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Old August 19, 2009, 02:52 PM   #238
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Originally posted by Glenn E. Meyer
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To answer a previous question - does the simple presence of a firearm imply violence?

Since this has been intensively studied and well within my area of expertise - the answer is simply that it does for a significant number of people.

For folks with firearms knowledge the effect is not so great and has a little more contextual nuances. Go to the Polite Society next year and hear my presentation.

That's my point - for those outside the choir - the presence of the firearm does imply violence and prime negative attitudes.
Not necessarily. As divemedic pointed out, police and secret service personnel openly displaying firearms doesn't seem to alarm most people. So, why then does display by a private citizen? I think the answer is that they've been conditioned by both the media and certain politicians to assume that anyone outside the police who has a firearm has violent intentions. Perhaps, if enough people openly display their firearms while showing the proper degree of restraint as the two open-carriers in question, people will begin to realize that these conditioned assumptions aren't always accurate.

While I agree that the wheels of democracy can work in our favor, by it's very nature some degree of public opinion is neccessary in order for the democratic process to work. If the issue is never brought to the public's attention, nothing will change. Unfortunately, the majority of the media is indeed slanted against us and generally only gives firearms negative coverage. Because of this, we can't rely on the media to give us positive coverage unless, as happend in these two instances, the incident is simply too noteworthy for them to resist. As I said in my earlier post, it is equally if not more important that we represent ourselves positively after the fact as Mr. Kostric did so that any attempt, such as that by Matthews, to portray us negatively backfires.

While there is a certain degree of risk involved (a lack of restraint could very easily turn people against us), so long as everyone continues to keep a cool head I think that people such as the open-carriers can go a long way towards changing people's perceptions. However, we can't change anyone's perceptions if no one hears our side of the argument.
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Old August 19, 2009, 03:10 PM   #239
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About the police and other security forces - there has been great discussion of what kind of long arms they can carry just because the appearance of ARs for example do intimidate the public and give the wrong impression.

Police, city government officials and civilians have made this point. In fact, because of it - Ruger Mini-14s were sometimes the guns of choice and Remington came up with a pump 223 which would look more politically correct.

We can't get around that for some, it looked threatening.

Of course, folks have been influenced and conditioned. Since that exists in many - that's the point of whether a display which invokes their conditioning is productive.

Again, I think it is an empirical question as to the outcome. However, despite being a gun person, I don't ignore evidence of the effect of such displays and consider it.

About police again - we've found that if the gun is handled by someone who seems competent, less negative ideation is primed. However, a citizen carrying at a rally is an unknown and if seen as inappropriate - may not be trusted.

The issue needs to be brought to the public's attention - our discussion is what is persuasive.

For example, to return to education - in our department newsletter about our research and activities - we have the picture of me at the Polite Society, with a Glock, protecting a baby in a scenario. Thus, quite a few young people will see a responsible educator who is a gun user.
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Old August 19, 2009, 03:45 PM   #240
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Not necessarily.
Wrong.

Genetically, display of "weaponry" such as fang is designed to intimidate and provoke response to such intimidation. It's hardwired, and the development of artificial weapons was equally a result of the need to excersize power or impose threat as it was to be a tool. Look at chimpanzee display with "clubs" (branches).

Our cultural norms reinforce that hardwiring of our brains. Time and place of weapon display is part of that hard wiring, since under certain circumstances, a display of weaponry is not seen as a threat. Witness the chimpanzee just holding the branch, or showing its fangs in a non threat environment.

Since we are nothing more than advanced primates, studying primate threat behavior provides an important basis for evaluating the display of weapons.

Remember, before there was Camp perry and sporting clays, there was war and murder.

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Old August 19, 2009, 04:01 PM   #241
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Originally Posted by Wildalaska
Genetically, display of "weaponry" such as fang is designed to intimidate and provoke response to such intimidation.
And yet Ken there were times in our countries past that the sight of a firearm in public did not provoke said response since it was a big part of life at that time (just read a great book about Daniel Boone).

I am going back and forth on this like a windsock in a rotorwash but AZAK has a point as to context. Glenn points out that John Q does not get shaky over the sight of a firearm IF he believes the one carrying it is competent and can be trusted, hence the lack of fear by civilians who see police and USSS at Presidential events.

In fact my anecdotal experience at many Presidential events is when John Q sees Mr. Secret Service armed to the teeth (and they are) the uniform reaction is: "These guys mean business, Good!" so I think the fear must go beyond the sight of the weapon.

However, I am not sure how one of us gun types could get John Q to look at us OCing and say "Wow, I am glad he is here!" But I would like that to happen.
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Old August 19, 2009, 04:08 PM   #242
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Our cultural norms reinforce that hardwiring of our brains. Time and place of weapon display is part of that hard wiring, since under certain circumstances, a display of weaponry is not seen as a threat. Witness the chimpanzee just holding the branch, or showing its fangs in a non threat environment.

Since we are nothing more than advanced primates, studying primate threat behavior provides an important basis for evaluating the display of weapons.
Ah, but merely having a weapon is not the same as threatening someone with it. A pistol in a holster, even a visible one, is not the same as brandishing that weapon in a threatening manner. A slung rifle is different than a shouldered (or even one at port arms).

I will say that a government official with a weapon is more threatening and has a larger chilling effect on free speech and freedom for redress than a citizen with a weapon.
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Old August 19, 2009, 04:12 PM   #243
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And yet Ken there were times in our countries past that the sight of a firearm in public did not provoke said response since it was a big part of life at that time
Wrong again....time and place

Quote:
Ah, but merely having a weapon is not the same as threatening someone with it.
Wrong again...time and place....

Quote:
I will say that a government official with a weapon is more threatening and has a larger chilling effect on free speech and freedom for redress than a citizen with a weapon.
*

Wrong again...time and place

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*Come one dude stop being histrionic, you see a traffic cop with a Glock as a "threat"?

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A slung rifle is different than a shouldered
Really....ya sure?

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Old August 19, 2009, 04:15 PM   #244
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I will say that a government official with a weapon is more threatening and has a larger chilling effect on free speech and freedom for redress than a citizen with a weapon.
IMO that is correct, and thus the need to counteract that effect by meeting a spade with a spade.

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time and place
I believe that would be; Here and now.
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Old August 19, 2009, 04:20 PM   #245
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Originally Posted by Wildalaska
Wrong again....time and place
To be sure however does "who" enter into your equation?

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Originally Posted by OuTcAsT
IMO that is correct, and thus the need to counteract that effect by meeting a spade with a spade.
I do not think John Q is as fightened of police and USSS doing their jobs at a Presidential event as they would be of some civilian they know nothing of or about standing there at the same event with an AR-15.

However, as one poster pointed out earlier and I do so as well often. Those who post here are not necessarily mainstream. I know I'm not!
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Old August 19, 2009, 04:52 PM   #246
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So, WA-

Explain how a Secret Service Agent or a Police officer is any less threatening or has any less of an effect on free speech than the citizen with the gun that is standing less than 50 feet away from that LEO?

Same time, same place.

Government officials killed far more people in the last century than did private citizens with arms.
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Old August 19, 2009, 04:54 PM   #247
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To state that the private person carrying a gun is not threatening to some and that the government employee carrying the gun is more threatening is not really useful. That is an interpretation of the poster.

That's what the poster thinks but from a large research base on weapons priming of ideation, my professional opinion says that is incorrect. This is a simple point that the emotion evoked is contextual and based on the knowledge and emotional response of the viewer.

I'm afraid these debate go nowhere if you cannot take the perspective of others and insist that the way you think the world is and/or should be perceived is the way others do.

As far as the research base - if one wants - Berkowitz, Anderson, Bartholow - google scholar them and search on aggression.

This is a variant of the popular mantra that a gun is a tool and the choir chortles. However, those outside the choir see them as instruments of lethal force.

Incestous choir chatter is not helpful in convincing the general public. Research on decision making clearly shows that group think and failure to take the perspective of others leads to poor analysis.
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Old August 19, 2009, 05:04 PM   #248
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Glenn,
Dead on as usual (you like those $.25 words though don't you?).

John Q does not fear LE being armed because he believes that LE is there to protect him and society (generally I will not delve into the African American/Latino experience).

So, how then do you gun toters engender the same attitude within our civilian non-gun toting brethern? I suspect it will be a long process but is it plausible to have civilians wearing firearms openly where others will not be afraid (other than crooks)? Or will we need to keep them concealed for the near term?
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Old August 19, 2009, 05:18 PM   #249
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No one was afraid at the rally. Why weren't they afraid? They understood that it was speech, not intimidation.

I will point out again that NONE of the people in any of the footage, nor the local police, nor the SS, nor even the woman in the video debating with the AR-carrying gentlemen, appear the least bit intimidated. She was SAYING that it was intimidating, but she clearly wasn't intimidated. That, or she's the bravest person I have ever seen.

People who were there at the rally, knew that the gentlemen was exercising 2A and 1A at the same time. NO ONE took cover, ran for their lives, or any other response that one would expect to see from any normal human in fear of their life.

The presence of a firearm to someone unfamiliar, or unaccustomed to seeing them, can be chilling and unnerving, even if no-one is bearing it. Many people would have a similar reaction to a lone firearm sitting all by itself in a driveway. Is that intimidation, or does intimidation require the accompanying behavior of an live intimidator?

'Intimidate' is a verb, not a feeling. It requires action. We need to separate out pure fear of firearms as objects, and intimidation via firearm. Fear is fear, but these are two different sources of fear. At the root of 'feeling' intimidated is mistrust. People generally trust police, therefore they are less likely to 'feel' intimidated by an armed officer. They've been conditioned to 'feel' intimidated by an armed civilian, whether that civilian is doing any intimidating or not.

There is an unavoidable reconditioning that will have to occur as rights are restored if the carrying of firearms is see to it's cultural renaissance. Now, many of us agree that these events might not be the best method for all sorts of excellent reasons.

However, the incidents of the past two weeks have clearly demonstrated on the international stage that the mere presence of a firearm, even in the hands of a civilian, EVEN if it's an AR15 with a full, 30 round magazine, does NOT automatically spell disaster and mayhem, and does NOT automatically warrant a violent crackdown from armed authorities.

That's huge, and can be a pivotal moment in the return of civilian bearing of arms to it's rightful place in our society. Let's not screw it up.

It was risky, but the point has been made. I hope that we can just take the win, lay low, and let Gura and others carry these success stories unblemished into the SCOTUS next term and carry out the coup de grâce: incorporation, and the right to bear in DC.

Once that happens, we can start knocking down some dominoes in NY, MA, CA, IL, HA, WI, and every other recalcitrant enclave of 2A tyranny.

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Old August 19, 2009, 05:28 PM   #250
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Exactly. The only people here being intimidated are gun owners who are so afraid that someone won't like them that they are willing to be cowed into giving up a right, so someone will like them.
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