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Helmke’s View of the Marchers

Disconnected is a very apt word, if you ask me, but it’s a masterful piece of gun control propaganda with the usual half-truths an omissions. I’ll take them one-by-one:

“Don’t Tread on Me Flags” on the Mall framed by flags at half-staff around the Washington Monument in memory of victims of terrorism since yesterday was the 15th Anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing by an anti-government NRA member who made the money to make his bomb by selling weapons at gun shows;

One variant of the “Dont Tread on Me” flag is our current Navy Jack. Surely that’s not a disconnect for flags flying at half staff, is it? Plus, if you read the book American Terrorist, you’ll find McVeigh quit the NRA because it was too soft, and went around to gun shows handing out hate literature, rather than selling guns to make money to buy his bomb. Considering his bomb was diesel fuel an fertilizer, I’m not sure how much it cost to buy it anyway. Either way, if he had worked at a gas station to make the money, we wouldn’t blame the gas station.

Speeches that focused less on guns and more on health care, the federal deficit, bailouts, and other decisions with which they disagreed with the very express implication that the reason they were carrying (or wanting to carry) their guns was because “the guys with the guns make the rules” (as stated by the NRA boss Wayne LaPierre last Spring after Obama took office);

Brady would love people to believe they were egging on extremists to take their guns and go out and “make the rules” but it was another group of extremists he was referring to.

Seeing guns carried in an area where Confederate troops may once have marched within view of the Capitol Dome which was being constructed when Lee and Davis and the Southern states decided that they wanted to “restore” a different understanding of the Constitution than that endorsed by Lincoln and the voters who elected him

Sure, get a few hidden hints at racism in there for good measure. Too bad the history is wrong, because pretty much all of Northern Virginia that was in artillery range of Washington D.C. was occupied by federal troops for the duration of the Civil War.

Seeing guns carried close enough to the Reagan National Airport (named after a President who was shot by a gunman in DC in 1981) where a 50 caliber sniper rifle (legal in this country and now allowed in national parks) might easily take out airplanes on the ground (or about to land or take off);

If the standard is being able to punch holes through the relatively thin aluminum skin of an aircraft, then no small arm short of maybe a .22 is acceptable to the Brady folks. But here you were with some of the most extreme people our movement has to offer, and no planes were shot down, no revolution got started, no one got shot, and they were polite:

And finally, being treated (for the most part) politely by people on a beautiful sunny day whose level of fear and paranoia seemed to reflect a dark view of society and our nation.

Surprised? I have disagreements with these folks on tactics, and I don’t agree with them that our government is anywhere close to being the kind of Government Jefferson spoke about in the Declaration of Independence. But our federal government is supposed to be one of limited and enumerated powers. Raise people to believe that, then suddenly change the rules and start telling them it’s really unlimited, I can’t blame them for being pissed. I’d hardly call urging a return to that state a “dark view.” They take to using guns as props in their political theater because they’ve been made to feel powerless and unrepresented by the political process. The reasons for that I think are complex, but why think about the topic seriously when you can use a few sentences to mold everything into the left’s narrative about the right, and particularly gun owners, being dangerous.

32 Responses to “Helmke’s View of the Marchers”

  1. Carl from Chicago says:

    What dawns on me about these marches is that while they have developed some hysteria and overblown rhetoric … their effect will likely be indirect.

    I suspect that years from now, folks will vaguely recall Americans carrying firearms to rallies … vaguely recall that some people were hysterically afraid and predicted the sky would fall … and also they will know that nothing bad happened.

    I do suspect it might actually lead to a normalization of such behavior, just as the whole concealed carry thing has done over the last couple decades.

    However, I would encourage my fellow “big stick” carrying gun owners to try and walk softly as well …

  2. Retardo says:

    No “fear and paranoia” nor “dark view[s] of society and our nation” from Helmke, at least. Except when he opens his mouth, of course.

  3. Justin Buist says:

    “Plus, if you read the book American Terrorist, you’ll find McVeigh quit the NRA because it was too soft, and went around to gun shows handing out hate literature, rather than selling guns…”

    I read that book. I recall McVeigh and somebody else robbing a guy of nearly his entire gun collection so they could sell them at gun shows. Here’s an old NYT article that touches on it: http://www.nytimes.com/1995/07/03/us/stolen-guns-linked-to-oklahoma-bombing.html?pagewanted=1

  4. Well, if you fellers had half a sack, you could have come to the banks of the Potomac and given him a-humiliating-hug-with-a-smile like I did. He looked like he was crapping glass. Go to my blog and see the picture. But then, if I did that to you prags, you’d look that way too, eh?

    You know, civil war may play hob with NRA fund-raising. Perhaps you should get a new horn to toot.

    And how about that principled NRA embracing of Harry Reid? You guys are gonna give honest street whores a bad name.

    Mike Vanderboegh
    III

  5. Bruce says:

    While many within the mass media machine are dialing back on the failed “Dissent is racist” shrieking point, and opting instead to go with that of “Dissent is terroristic/seditious”, Helmke seems to be doubling down on dumbass.

    Now, we’re racists AND terrorists…

    …and a floor wax and a dessert topping.

  6. JD says:

    I just watched some guy from the Michigan Militia debate Helmke on Fox and Friends. The Militia man did us no favors, he didn’t give ONE specific example to Doocy of Obama’s gun control votes and views when asked. He also failed to point out that the national park carry bill that Obama signed was an amendment (Sen. Coburn) to the credit card reform bill and if it was a stand alone bill Obama would’ve vetoed it.
    Helmke and his stupid crooked grin just sat there and and claimed how “pro gun” Obama is and how the people at these 2A rallies are just trying to intimidate politicians.

  7. JD says:

    Dear Mike V. III,
    Coming on here and insinuating that people who didn’t attend the D.C./Virginia rallies don’t have any sac and blasting the NRA isn’t going to encourage a lot of people to check out you and Helmke in a bromance embrace on your blog.

  8. JD,

    Wassamatta? Don’t you want to defend NRA’s suck-up to Reid?

    And don’t tell me y’all haven’t had Water Mitty dreams of counting coup on Paul Helmke, embarrassing him in front of media cameras. Well, I did. Me, the despised and denounced of NRA Pragdom. I did that. We did that. The hated Three Percenters, supporting the RTC organizers.

    You folks acted like it was a big victory when we were “permitted” to once more carry weapons in federal parks. But you DID exactly dick. We, on the other hand, seized the opportunity to make our points.

    I can look myself in the mirror this morning with a big smile.

    Stay at home, feel safe, call better men like Daniel Almond names. Or as the crooked Sheriff in Silverado advised, “Hide and watch.”

    This ride is going to get bumpier.

    MBV
    III

  9. Peter Hamm says:

    Oh, come on. McVeigh COULDN”t have been selling stolen guns at gun shows, because there is no loophole! For goodness sake, keep your story straight.

  10. thirdpower says:

    Petey,

    What laws apply don’t apply at a gunshow that apply outside?

    Why is the Brady Campaign pushing for all sales to go through FFL dealers in IL when there are already universal background checks for private sales in the way of licensing?

    Are you claiming the ISP is not doing their job as required by law?

  11. Peter Hamm says:

    thirdpower:

    read the definition of loophole.

    the loophole is in the Brady Law, which allows private sales without background checks. But you knew that.

    There should be background checks on every sale, and that includes sale to people with permits. Because people with permits becoime prohibited purchasers after they get the permit. But you knew that, too. That’s why there’s a guy in prison for murder in Florida who still had a valid ccw permit.

    stop living your life in denial.

  12. Sebastian says:

    There is no federal law banning sales between private individuals, who are not prohibited persons, and who are not engaged in the business of selling firearms.

    There is no “loophole.”

  13. Peter Hamm says:

    Sure, Sebastian. Whatever you say.

  14. Alpheus says:

    “There should be background checks on every sale, and that includes sale to people with permits. Because people with permits becoime prohibited purchasers after they get the permit. But you knew that, too. That’s why there’s a guy in prison for murder in Florida who still had a valid ccw permit.

    “stop living your life in denial.”

    In a 1982 Senate Report, Senator Orrin Hatch (UT) observed that there was less crime when every person, including every criminal and madman, had access to guns; he came to this conclusion after looking over decades of gun control laws of all sorts. From this, I’ve concluded that we should have no background checks at all.

    Ignoring, for the moment, the issue of why someone who is considered safe enough to be admitted back into society (even under probation) should not be permitted to have the means to be able to defend his own life, I would challenge you to show me how background checks have lowered crime.

    I would also point out that of the 4.5 million acts of violence in 2008, 3.3 million used no weapon at all. (See “http://blog.robballen.com/2010/04/14/p4047-even-if-you-add-in-the-criminals.post” for an interesting discussion on gun users as criminals.) Background checks won’t fix that!

    It’s silly to think that Government will be able to figure out who will be murderers, and who won’t, by any criterion, because most of us won’t be criminals.

  15. Sebastian says:

    It’s just a matter of semantics. It’s a “loophole” to you only because you didn’t get that as part of the Brady Act. I’ve explained here in great detail why banning all private sales is seriously problematic for gun owners.

    And I am not unsympathetic to the notion that all transfers should have a background check. If I could wave a magic wand and put a system in place to accomplish that, in a way that deals with our concerns, I would do that. But I’m not subjecting it to the sausage grinder of the political process and hoping for the best.

  16. Peter Hamm says:

    Hey Vanderboegh, they’re ignoring you! Don’t let them. Show them you’re the boss of them.

  17. Thirdpower says:

    So Petey,

    Would the Brady Campaign support non-FFL access to the NICS?

    “people with permits becoime prohibited purchasers after they get the permit.”

    So you admit that the Illinois State Police are not performing their duty as proscribed by law of retrieving the FOID cards of people who become prohibited purchasers.

  18. SayUncle says:

    Yeah, today I used the speed limit loophole when I drove to work.

  19. AntiCitizenOne says:

    Sebastian’s idea sounds great – what Petey doesn’t know is that Helmke never tells him that the language in these bills is also designed to wreck a successful method for gun-rights groups to organize and prolong the sacred gun culture, which is always a GOOD thing Hamm.

    You are in effect disrupting the ability of individuals to peaceably assemble as protected under the 1st amendment.

  20. Robb Allen says:

    There should be background checks on every sale, and that includes sale to people with permits.

    How much unicorn dander and fairy farts does it take to get the criminals to abide by this rule, Petey? Because if you can’t get those who purchase weapons for ill intents to follow suit, you’ve done nothing to prevent violent crimes in the least. You’re just hassling the law abiding.

    “Oh, but there’s A CCW holder in jail on some charge!”

    Yeah, and I’m sure there’s a convicted pedophile in jail somewhere who shares your enjoyment of denying people their rights, but that doesn’t mean all the pedophiles are Brady Campaign supporters.

    Which reminds me, I need to get my Evil Black Rifle 6.8 upper ready to sell. And I’ll do it without a background check, and if things work out, I’ll even be able to mail it directly to the purchaser’s house using standard mail.

  21. JD says:

    Mike V. III,
    It won’t bother me if Reid gets voted out, in fact I hope he does. I don’t agree with NRA on everything but no organization can please everyone everytime. I just don’t appreciate pro-gunners shitting on the NRA, sorry.
    The hated 3pers? I don’t hate them at all. If you guys are gonna take it to the next level someday good luck. If the time ever comes that the govt. wants my AR’s they ain’t gonna find any good old “ND hospitality” at my house. I just don’t believe we’re that close to critical mass at this time.
    You make it sound as if I was against the rallies out east on monday, I wasn’t. In fact I donated $ to the 2ndA march. I didn’t have the time or $ to take a trip to D.C. from N.D.

  22. JD says:

    Robb Allen Said,
    April 21st, 2010 at 12:55 pm
    “Which reminds me, I need to get my Evil Black Rifle 6.8 upper ready to sell. And I’ll do it without a background check, and if things work out, I’ll even be able to mail it directly to the purchaser’s house using standard mail.”

    :-) I luv it.

  23. mikeb302000 says:

    I’m glad to hear that you, Sebastian are not totally unsympathetic to background checks on all transfers. I’ll bet you could catch some flak about that too.

    I already saw that picture with Mike V. and Kelmke and I didn’t think Helmke looked frightened or nervous or anything. That’s just more bullshit from Mike V., which his fanboys will not disseminate far and wide until people actually begin to believe it.

    I really think the various factions of the pro-gun movement do that kind of thing more than your opposition.

  24. Sebastian says:

    Not unsympathetic doesn’t mean I’m willing to go along with closing the “loophole.” If I could wave a magic wand, I’d make it so that any gun that touches the hands of someone predatorily violent heats up to 300 degrees and burns them too. That doesn’t mean I’m willing to run a bill to that effect through Congress.

    What I would consider a reasonable background check system isn’t politically attainable, so there’s not much point in wishing it could be done. It can’t. That doesn’t have much to do with the Brady Campaign either. Privacy advocates would get pissy too, because my solution is just to make all the criminal information generally public. All you need to check someone out is a name and DOB. That’s it.

  25. Carl in Chicago says:

    The simplest solution to addressing this “loophole” is to repeal the Brady Act.

    Without the Brady law, myth of the loophole simply could not exist. The loophole idea derives from the Brady law. Remove the Brady law and the problem goes away. Constitutionally, it is more reasonable to repeal infringements than to develop additional ones.

    The difference between Peter and Sebastian is that they are starting at different points. Sebastian’s starting point is individual liberty, and Peter’s is governmental restrictions. Sebastian bases his philosophy on individual liberty, while Peter bases his on mandates and restrictions on liberty. One can always find “loopholes” in restrictions to trump up justification for more restrictions. That is the nature of the gun control movement. Remember, the ever more “progressive” and “solution-based” approach to law and society can still lead to the precipice.

    Boiled down, Peter, what you oppose is the freedom loophole. Free humans are masters of our destinies. There doesn’t need to be ever-increasing restrictions on access to material objects. Men and women decide to commit crimes. That decision is the crucial factor, not the material means. No, we truly don’t have to perform background checks on free people who are responsible. We simply need to eliminate those who abuse their rights. We simply MUST become intolerant of people who commit criminal violence.

    Anyway, given Heller, and given McDonald … the general public might just start shifting to thinking more like Sebastian, and less like Peter. Repeal the Brady Act? “Yes we can.”

  26. Bob S. says:

    MikeB302000,

    Do you support background checks on other items related to the Bill of Rights?

    How about a background check on the sale of all Bibles, Talmuds or Korans?

    Surely you support that, don’t you?

    Or my personal favorite, I want background checks on all computers and cameras. Surely even you can see the benefit of that; reducing the horrendous chlid pron (deliberate misspelling) industry.

    Do you support background checks on computers and cameras?
    After all, we all have a shared responsibility in that crime if we don’t take steps to reduce it, right?

  27. Thirdpower says:

    MikeB has openly admitted to illegally owning firearms so he is well acquainted w/ the idea of criminals obtaining them.

  28. RuffRidr says:

    Or my personal favorite, I want background checks on all computers and cameras. Surely even you can see the benefit of that; reducing the horrendous chlid pron (deliberate misspelling) industry.

    I like that analogy. Mike, surely you would support background checks for computer and camera purchases. After all, as a computer owner you a have a “shared responsibility” with the “famous 10%” of those owners who would commit crimes.

  29. Don Gwinn says:

    The other problem Mr. Hamm and Mr. Hell are having in their discussion is that Mr. Hamm is using the word “loophole” to mean something other than its standard definition. A “loophole” is normally understood to mean an oversight–a part of a law or rule that allows behavior that the lawmakers intended to forbid, or allows the prohibition of behavior they intended to protect. Sebastian doesn’t see the Brady Act as having a “gun show loophole” because the legislature clearly did not intend to require background checks on sales between private individuals. This is clear because they didn’t require such background checks on such sales anywhere or any time. Thus there’s no reason to think that they intended them to be required at gun shows and simply made a mistake that allowed a “loophole” to form.

    Mr. Hamm does not limit his scope to the lawmakers who wrote or voted for the law. He apparently figures that he and his colleagues intended the law to make private sales much more difficult and much less common by requiring such background checks, so if the law doesn’t do that, it has a “loophole.” But that’s simply not what the word means to the rest of the English-speaking world. A loophole is not simply something you wanted to have passed into law but couldn’t find the votes. A loophole is also not something that comports with the intention of the lawmakers but not with the intention of some third party who didn’t have a vote when the legislation was enacted.

  30. Alpheus says:

    “The other problem Mr. Hamm and Mr. Hell are having in their discussion is that Mr. Hamm is using the word “loophole” to mean something other than its standard definition. A “loophole” is normally understood to mean an oversight–a part of a law or rule that allows behavior that the lawmakers intended to forbid, or allows the prohibition of behavior they intended to protect.”

    Actually, there are a lot of things in the law that the legislature intended, but are called “loopholes”; indeed, our tax law is full of them. On the other hand, the legislature didn’t mean for the Alternative Minimum Tax to get poor people, as it is doing now (because it hasn’t been adjusted for inflation), yet I’ve never heard this described as a loophole.

    Basically, when someone talks about a loophole, what they are saying is “someone is doing something that I don’t like, even though there’s this law here that’s supposed to forbid things like this!” In the case of tax law, the thing forbidden is to keep your own money; in the case of gun laws, the thing forbidden is to peacefully transfer your weapon to someone else.

  31. Ian Argent says:

    A name+DOB check is worrthless for establishing that the person standing in front of you with the cash is in fact not a prohibited person. All it establishes is that there exists in the system a person with that name and DOB, and the person of record is either prohibited or not. That and a fin will get you a cup of Starbucks. Do I need to addd why an ID check doesn’t add any security?

    Being able to be more certain than that about the the guy looking to buy your spare gun requires putting sensitive information into an insecure and unsecurable channel outbound and/or putting the return information into an insecure and unsecurable channel back to the point of sale.

    Background checks by FFLs “work” only because the FFLs are presumtively trustworthy for handling sensitive confidential information.

    If we did put in a publically-accessible background check system it will tend to allow smart criminals *easier* access to private-sale firearms (assuming, which I do not, that private sale from legal possessor to prohibited person is a significant source of firearms. That assumption has been exploded elsewhere). Right now, the lack of any background check forces the responsible private seller to judge the purchaser by appearance and behavior. But a background-check system may short-circuit that evaluation process. (Again, this is a known problem in the security field).

  32. Firehand says:

    I think Tam’s comment was that ‘To Helmke & Co. a ‘loophole’ means “You’re doing something legal that I don’t like!”

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