It’s not surprising that the gun control community postures over current events, because those events can sometimes help drive their narratives. When a kid steals a gun from a parent and does something untoward with it, it makes their case that all guns should be disassembled into pieces and stored in underground vaults in the backyard. When one of “mom’s little angel” teenagers gets ahold of a gun and shoots a few rivals and some bystanders, it’s not necessarily crazy on the part of our opponents to presume that maybe some kind of vague, “stricter background checks,” might find a sympathetic ear among voters.
Sunday’s confrontation in Waco also appears to have started as a result of a dispute involving the Bandidos, one of the world’s largest motorcycle clubs, with as many as 2,500 members in 14 countries, and one that’s engaged in distribution of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, according to the Justice Department. One of their mottoes: “We’re the people your parents warned you about.”
Yes, I’m sure if we just stop people from privately transferring guns, outlaw biker gangs will be reduced to settling their differences through pillow fights and rock/paper/scissors. It’s certainly not possible that a criminal enterprise, who already traffic in contraband, would have no problem obtaining guns or anything else they need to pursue their black market trade. But I think they really believe this.
They don’t live in reality. Outlaw Biker Gangs aren’t going to be disarmed. Motivated lunatics will find ways to get guns. The only people their policies succeed in disarming are the people you didn’t have to worry about in the first place.
A few weeks ago, Yahoo News published a hit piece on NRA. I figured this was likely ginned up by some of our opponents in the gun control movement. Most of the mainstream outfits would love a story like that, but the fact that it only appeared on Yahoo, to not much fanfare from the rest of the media, hinted to me that whoever wrote it probably did not follow the barest of journalistic standards, and quite possibly was an operative from the other side, especially given that the author is associated with a left-leaning group Center for Public Integrity, which is supported by supported by George Soros’s Open Society Foundation and has a board stocked with people who are not friendly to Second Amendment freedoms.
At the end of that article, you’ll notice a quite lengthy update, where NRA has addressed many of the allegations against it. When I first saw this article, I thought that it was probably a coding error on their web site, because to be honest, the firm they hire to do that kind of work has been sloppy in the past. Because we’re often using the PVF web site to look up grades, I can’t tell you how many times it’s just been broken. Though, it’s been pretty good recently, so maybe they’ve hired some better people.
A key thing people get confused about when it comes to campaign finance laws is what constitutes political activity. To use an example, here’s an add NRA ran in Colorado ahead of the 2014 elections:
Some folks might say this is clearly political activity, but it does not call for people to support for, or oppose any bill or measure. It does not mention any candidate for federal office. This is educational outreach, rather than political activity. This ad could even be funded under the auspices of a 501(c)(3). In fact, a good bit what NRA does that many people might think is “political” is done under a 501(c)(3), NRA’s Freedom Action Foundation.
This article was pretty obviously a targeted hit piece. That’s even more apparent when you consider none of the other MSM outlets, who’d love to be all over a story like this, really touched it. The only other outlets I saw talking about it are Townhall and Brietbart.
I used to be very much against the “physician gag laws,” viewing it as a First Amendment issue, but lately as the medical professional societies recommend more and more intrusions into the lives of patients I’m moving more into the “meh” category. They kind of deserve what’s being served upon them. If the medical profession wants war, it can have war, and they can find out just how much lobbying power we have.
Various medical professional organizations, lead by the American Society of Physicians, are putting out a position paper calling for more gun control. You can see the abstract here.
The specific recommendations include universal background checks of gun purchasers, elimination of physician “gag laws,” restricting the manufacture and sale of military-style assault weapons and large-capacity magazines for civilian use, and research to support strategies for reducing firearm-related injuries and deaths. The health professional organizations also advocate for improved access to mental health services and avoidance of stigmatization of persons with mental and substance use disorders through blanket reporting laws. The American Bar Association, acting through its Standing Committee on Gun Violence, confirms that none of these recommendations conflict with the Second Amendment or previous rulings of the U.S. Supreme Court.
I can’t really tell you how much this infuriates me. If I were NRA, and any of these medical societies receive any kind of federal or state funding for this kind of crap, It’d lobby to get it cut. Screw them over any way you can think of. These people have declared war on the Second Amendment using the guise and prestige of the medical profession. As a wise man once said, punch back twice as hard.
It’s pretty apparent that that various medical professional societies and the American Bar Association have been taken over by social justice warriors, and they are all conspiring to deny us fundamental constitutional rights. The American Bar Association doesn’t get to decide our constitutional rights. It would probably be a good idea to form a movement among grassroots medical and legal professionals to take their professions back from the SJWs. It’s going to take gun owning physicians (and there are a lot of them) speaking out against the social justice warriors. If only we had a Larry Correia or two in the medical and legal professions.
It was pretty apparent when the judgement came down that the spin was going to be: “Look at this poor family, forced to pay $280,000 by the evil gun lobby who killed their son.” Well, that didn’t take long, did it? John Richardson over at No Lawyers, Only Guns and Money did some digging (with the help of an observant reader), and it turns out that the victims in this case are on the Brady payroll.
It would seem likely, in this case, that the Brady Center is going to pick up the tab for the lawsuit. I’d bet that if fundraising letters haven’t already gone out begging for donations to help the family out from under the thumb of the evil gun lobby, those fundraising letters are surely being prepared. Still, with these kinds of fees, it’s hard to imagine how filing frivolous suits like this is going to be a winning strategy for Brady in the long term. I suspect, however, that they are desperately trying to carve out a niche in a space increasingly dominated by Mike Bloomberg.
Bloomberg’s biggest liability is how well he self-vilifies, and how poorly he plays in flyover country. Shannon Watts’ organization once looked like it could be formidable, but goofs and gaffes she’s made have seriously sapped her organization of credibility. Meanwhile, the Brady Campaign and Center, though both shadows of their former selves, still achieved a great deal in the gun control movement. It would be good to see that slide into the dustbin of history.
I suspect, however, that the more likely future for Brady is along the VPC model, where the organization maintains a skeleton crew, funded largely by outside foundations, maybe even including Bloomberg. It would be better for Bloomberg to control the Brady organization, and keep it subservient, rather than letting it collapse, with all the bad headlines for gun control that will follow after such a well-regarded, pioneering organization folds up. That kind of thing would not go unnoticed in DC, either by policymakers or politicians.
Dave notes that the judgement is a significant part of Bradys’ income and assets. Are we witnessing the dying gasp of the Brady Center? Let’s hope so. Preying on the families of victims to raise their profile by filing frivolous lawsuits is beyond the pale. Recall they recently withdrew from another suit for ethical lapses. Depending on how the judgement is structured, it might be possible for Brady to leave the victims holding the bag; on the hook for the 280 grand. If they do scurry off and leave the judgement to the family, it’s beyond the pale to exploit victims like that.
I think it’s time for the Brady Center to quietly disband. Even looking at the situation from the perspective of a person who supports gun control, the Brady organization no longer serve any useful purpose. How the mighty have fallen.
It seems that Mike Bloomberg’s gun control cash can’t buy PA Attorney General Kathleen Kane’s way out of more legal drama.
Kane is being sued by a former agent from her office because he says she fabricated a story about him, claiming that he says his sting was only targeting black people. He claims that he never said that, and he says it seriously harmed his reputation as an investigator. He even took a polygraph test that he says he passed.
In fact, the story highlights that Kane claims she had a sworn statement by the agent’s boss that the agent suing her did say it. The problem is that there was no sworn statement. There was an unsworn statement (aka no legal accountability if they prove the boss lied) written more than a year after the supposed racial comment. To top that off, it was only written after Kane made her public claim. In other words, Kane made the claim that the agent with 20 years on the job made a statement. Then, four days after she issued the public attack, the agent’s boss magically writes up a statement fitting the narrative Kane told the media.
Remember folks, this woman won partly due to the huge financial investment made by Mike Bloomberg specifically because her views on gun control. She has repeatedly screwed with our reciprocity agreements, and she started lobbying against federal pro-gun bills before she even took office. But, hey, all those voters in the traditionally Republican parts of Pennsylvania felt like a vote for her was a vote for Penn State. No, it was a vote for corruption and abuse that not even the Philadelphia media can tolerate.
According to NRA, Brady Center Attorneys Jon Lawy and Alla Leftkowitz got in hot water for posting inadmissible evidence on the Brady website, which is a violation of Wisconsin ethics rules:
Milwaukee County Judge Jeffrey Conen may have given Lowy and Lefkowitz the benefit of the doubt when he said, “I don’t how things are practiced in Washington, D.C., or New York or anywhere else, but out here in the Midwest we have certain rules.” Judge Conen’s reference to Washington, D.C. and New York was likely due to those being the jurisdictions of Lowy’s and Lefkowitz’s bar membership, respectively.
NRA also notes, “all attorneys are charged with understanding ethical rules in the jurisdiction in which they’re licensed,” and note that both New York and D.C. have substantially similar rules.
This is more evidence that the Brady Campaign and Brady Center are becoming the Junior Varsity of the gun control movement. They lack Bloomberg’s deep pockets and strategic acumen, and lack CSGV’s willingness to troll the depths of the Internet in search of mouth foaming supporters. This leaves Brady without a real niche. PLCAA pretty much prevents the Brady Center from doing anything useful, so they are stuck pretending to their supporters that they are making a difference.
The article notes that celebrities and anti-hunting advocates don’t attack or issue threats against male hunters at nearly the same rate as they target women or frequently even with the vitriol that they reserve for women.
Ultimately, it comes down to sexism in their movement. Women and guns, oh my! The article quotes a Vanderbilt professor, Kelly Oliver, who said:
“We expect men to be hunters, but we’re surprised when girls are hunting … Whatever we think about hunting the ‘Big Five’ in Africa, it’s clear that we still have issues with women and girls carrying guns and using them.”
Ah, gotta love sexism on the part of the animal rights activists that forces women into a box of pre-selected labels and hobbies just because of their sexual organs. Oh, wait, isn’t that what they often accuse us of doing?
The article does cite another professor who claims it isn’t sexism that motivates these attacks, but they are rooted in other judgements against the women hunters – their race, their socioeconomic status, and even their nationality. However, the second professor doesn’t appear to answer the challenge of why these attacks target female hunters when men share the same types of photos without nearly the level of antagonism. That’s still gender bias at work, even if the people issuing Twitter threats may also have an issue with a hunter’s race or class.
Certainly we saw a lot of reporters there at the protest, and cameras abound, but as of this morning this is all that appeared on Google News:
The first story is from Breitbart News, and the second Bob Owen’s article. I could fine one other casual mention of the protesting moms on ABC News, but other than the Guardian piece linked above, as best as I can tell it’s crickets. I spoke with someone who said they had been watching the news broadcasts to see if there was any coverage, and there wasn’t.
So without oxygen from media outlets, it’s pretty apparent that Mike Bloomberg would have done better to pile up all the money spent on planning, busses, hotels, t-shirts, signs, and box lunches, and burned it. Shannon Watts protest at NRAAM this year was an epic failure.
Hat Tip to Gail Pepin for the best photo of Shannon Watts ever which appears as the “featured image” of this post.