Brady Presser on Hain Lawsuit

The Brady Campaign seems to be really eagar to tout their involvement on the Melanie Hain case on the side of the Lebanon County Sheriff.  I agreed with the suit to get her License to Carry reinstated.  I might even agree with some form of civil rights suit.  The problem is, I just can’t agree with this particular suit.  I think the Brady’s see an easy opportunity to add a feather to their hat here, and unfortunatly, think it’s likely they will get what they want out of this situation.

UPDATE: A recent interview here:

Q: How do you feel about the Brady Center becoming involved?

A: They offered some aid to the county, but to my knowledge, neither the county nor the sheriff have taken them up on that, so it would seem to me they are just sitting on the sidelines drooling in hopes that they do get the go-ahead to handle things.

I would not be surprised if this is the case, but Bradys’ eagerness to get involved should say something.  They are not stupid.  For the better part of two decades they, in their several incarnations, had us on the defensive.  What the Bradys probably don’t realize here is that it would be problematic for the Sheriff to work openly with them in the part of Pennsylvania he’s in.  But they are eagar to define this struggle on their terms regardless.

42 thoughts on “Brady Presser on Hain Lawsuit”

  1. The suit may fail or get thrown out. I don’t think this is good case for Brady Bunch either. But without the attempt to push back there is no gain. “no risk- no gains.

    We will see.

  2. Look at it from their point of view. They get to be seen as intervening on the side of law enforcement, and of the county. Local governments across this state are cutting back on all kinds of public services because revenues are drying up. I think they see it’s a weak case, and want to be seen as helping a local community save significant money. There are fence sitters everywhere, even in these rural communities.

    That’s not to say Brady is always on the winning side of everything they get involved in, like Heller for instance, but I think what makes this different is they didn’t have to get involved, except that they see an easy opportunity for good PR, and I think their instincts are correct.

  3. I think the Brady Bunch since Heller is looking to be relevant.
    Many CCW and other gun folks are offended about the idea of a mother with small kids carry openly at a soccer game.

    Sebastian, you have been having the same reaction. Logically the venue has no bearing on the right of open carry. If you support the right, the person , event and venue makes no difference. So the emotional reaction is coming from something else. I think it is the refusal to conceed that a “bad thing” can happen at a local park and childrens soccer game.

    I read the suit and did not think it was well written. Loss of consortium was just thrown in. Loss of business is not directly related to actions of the sherriff. The loss of clients who were LEO is well within personal perogative.

    I do not believe she will convince a jury or court of the validity of her losses and that the sheriff is responsible. This is almost an ambulance chaser suit.

    So if she loses or the court throws out the suit , the Brady Bunch can claim they are relevant since they supported the sheriff against against an hysterical woman case.

    Personally, I think more gunnies ought to sue when rights are infringed.

    Chet in VA got 15K on his suit and the violation of 2A was thrown out in federal court, but because they took his SS # he got 15K. Norfolk has to be counting the costs when they have to pay out 10k here and 15k there. Hain’s suit has the same goal, to bleed the sherrif dept to refrain from abusing their carry rights. That goal I support, but the merits of the suit seem weak.

  4. Personally, I am of two minds here. On the one hand, I’d like to see her recover her attorney’s fees both as a deterrent, and as a matter of fairness. I think a million is a bit over the top. And, I’m concerned about the perception impact this may have. It’s perfectly legal, and there is nothing wrong with it, but open carry is not well accepted by the public. And like it or not, the fact that it took place at a soccer game with kids around won’t help her case. I think that there are a lot of people who aren’t part of the gun culture will see this as someone who was out to make trouble and launch a get-rich-quick lawsuit. And it’s not surprising that the Bradys would like to jump on that.

  5. If you support the right, the person , event and venue makes no difference.

    I’m going to disagree with that, RAH. There’s legal issues and then there’s the issue with society. I haven’t found anything that Sebastian has said to indicate he doesn’t believe she has the right under the law, but what he has said is that when you practice that right, you do have to think about the context. That doesn’t mean you sacrifice your rights, it just means that maybe you do try to educate first rather than scream, “It’s my right!”

    We’re at a troubling tipping point in Pennsylvania. While we are definitely still in the pro-gun column, we’re also seeing more cities defy state preemption laws. We have NJ folks throwing their resources into New Jersey in order to get a few more gun laws passed. We’re going to need friends in these fights, and when gun owners do these things, they need to realize there will likely be social consequences. My concern is when those social consequences turn into political consequences.

    From a PR perspective, I can tell you that her interviews make me absolutely cringe. She doesn’t have to try and actively make friends with anti-gun folks, but doing things like posing for press photos with her daughter seemingly reaching up for the gun on the soccer field are bad moves for all of us. When that picture runs, people who don’t know much about carrying rightfully get concerned. They see the barrel of a gun pointed a child’s hand, and a little hand reaching up to touch it while mom is looking the other way. That only plays into their fears and concerns. And this doesn’t even go into the issues about the lawsuit and how bad it appears to sue the sheriff for problems in the marital bed.


    You might want to do some research on the case. This woman was not detained, nor was her gun taken from her. This is in no way related to the case you link. At no time did they tell her she couldn’t carry, the sheriff just exercised his discretion (perfectly legal here in PA) to revoke her license to carry. She went to court and got it back. Now she’s just trying to make money off of it.

  6. I’m going to disagree with that, RAH. There’s legal issues and then there’s the issue with society. I haven’t found anything that Sebastian has said to indicate he doesn’t believe she has the right under the law, but what he has said is that when you practice that right, you do have to think about the context.

    Either the right exists, or it does not. If it does, then place and time do not enter into it.

    We’re at a troubling tipping point in Pennsylvania. While we are definitely still in the pro-gun column, we’re also seeing more cities defy state preemption laws

    The proper response when a governmental agency is abusing its powers is to take it to court, as was done here. It seems to me that you and Sebastian are only in favor of defending our right to keep and bear arms when it is certain that we will be victorious. This is philosophically and morally incorrect, as well as the recipe for a losing strategy in my opinion.

    At no time did they tell her she couldn’t carry, the sheriff just exercised his discretion (perfectly legal here in PA) to revoke her license to carry. She went to court and got it back. Now she’s just trying to make money off of it.

    I don’t necessarily agree with this part of it either. Do you really think the county would be deterred if the suit asked for a lesser amount? I think these $10k and $15k judgments and settlements don’t even matter to them; they just brush them off as the costs of their policy. Let her make her money. Let the county have to explain why they had to pay it. That can only be good for us.

    These folks had an agenda when they started this and it’s a fairly effective one: they want to make it inconvenient to exercise our rights in the hopes we will abandon them. Our counter strategy should be to cost them time and money to fight in court. If enough of these kinds of suits are filed, let alone succeed, these bad actors will become less willing to harass us.

    OK- caveat to all the above– the woman was rather stupid to act as she did, and I agree that she could handle herself more reputably. Nonetheless, each and every one of these affronts to our rights and liberty must be contested.

  7. Help me understand how an individual cop is punished when taxpayers have to fork over $1,000,000. The officer does not pay. The city leaders don’t pay. The police chief does not pay. The money just comes out of the general fund, and then taxes get hiked when other services are at risk of being cut.

    And your right, the courts are there to make sure that the other branches do their job and don’t abuse their power. Hence, she already won her license back. This is her second time taking him to court. The first time was to contest the abuse – taking the license – and she won. Given that she has her license back and already beat the sheriff in court, what else is to be gained from suing him for supposedly being responsible for causing her marital trouble?

  8. The monetary award does not punish an individual cop, it acts as a general deterrent to illegal behavior by public officials. Nobody wants to be the guy who costs the police department / school board / whatever a big chunk of money.

    Damages awarded against the defendants (which I imagine will be significantly less than the plaintiffs ask for) is money well spent. Knowingly revoking permits to punish lawful behavior should be expensive, and the taxpayer rightly ought to have an economic incentive to elect officials who will stay within the law.

    If there’s a reason for concern with this lawsuit it is its potential to set bad precedent on the second amendment.

  9. I should say that I would support a 1983 civil rights action against the sheriff, but not this particular 1983 action.

  10. It seems to me that you and Sebastian are only in favor of defending our right to keep and bear arms when it is certain that we will be victorious. This is philosophically and morally incorrect, as well as the recipe for a losing strategy in my opinion.

    That’s your interpretation of what I think, and it would be wrong. I have no problem getting behind stuff that’s risky, but I won’t get behind stuff that’s stupid. This lawsuit falls into the latter category.

  11. Actually the action is against the sheriif, I believe, and he is voted in. The last sheriff that did the same stunt with Greg Rotz was voted out of office. Sherriffs that cost the town or county money tend not to stay in the job. The next sheriif learns the lesson and this crap stops.

    I read her suit and felt is was weak and more a liability case to get $ like an ambulance chaser suit. So I do not think she will prevail as there is no loss than can be proven to be caused by the sheriff.

    A different suit may have been a better case.

  12. The Franklin County Sheriff that revoked Rotz license retired, was my understanding, and had decided not to run again before the revocation.

  13. This looks like just another case of someone looking to get paid. I live in Ohio, and we have open carry as well as CC, but if you have a concealed carry permit, CONCEALED is supposed to be the operative word.

    Even Ray Charles would be able to see that carrying a weapon out in the open at a soccer game or practice is going to upset a lot of people. I’d say the judge or jury would be hard pressed to award money for loss of consortimum, maybe hubby got bored with her, and is waiting till he sees the big check to give it up.

    I haven’t seen her interviews, or tape of her kids reaching for the weapon, but in my opinion, this woman as a poster child in favor of carry either concealed or open makes those of us who practice our rights responsibly look bad. And rewarding her for idiotic actions is not in anyone’s best interest.

  14. Sebestian is correct. The Sheriff that revoked me was not running for re-election (though he was on the ballot running for Mayor of Chambersburg – which he lost). Even if he had been hoping to remain in office as Sheriff, my incident took place ON election day, so the fallout was too late to impact votes one way or the other. As a matter of fact, he left office two days before my hearing, and didn’t even have to appear in court. For some reason, he didn’t have the courage to appear ‘on his own time’ to defend the validity of his actions to the press, and refused to appear on camera when they went to his home.

  15. Stick, the photo that plays up to the fears is here. She’s looking at the ground to the left while her daughter appears to be reaching up to the gun on her right while hugging her. Her hands are held behind her back, leaving the gun exposed while on a soccer field. When the initial complaints came from parents who were concerned about children around guns, this plays to their worst fears. She did not have to pose like this, nor did she have to get her daughter involved in this pose.

  16. The cowardly gun control coward/perverts would like nothing better than for Melanie Hain to get raped because she had no means of self-defense. My experience with the far left indicates that many of them fantasize about themselves as cool, sexy criminals–even though in reality they talk like girls, avoid physical activity like the plague, and, if employed at all, work in non-productive jobs like hair stylist and philosophy professor.

  17. Bitter,

    I just reread your comment about Melanie posing. I think that is a false statement. A picture was taken of her, not from interviews I believe, and she did not pose. That was a natural picture of her kids hugging her leg and since she was openly armed the gun is visible. The girl is reaching up to her mother, not the gun. She did not plan that photo to be taken so she should not be blamed for it.

    Beside that is the reality of open and conceal carry, folk’s carry around children. Do you think there should be a law against that? I don’t think you do.

    That photo will jar sensibilities just as a photo of a woman in another setting with kids crowding will or a man with kids. Well tough crap. Those sensibilities will just be jarred until maybe they get used to it or ban it.

    If it gets banned the gunnies also are to blame since they failed to support the principle and it doesn’t matter that a mom with kids also has the right to carry wherever. Get off the PR battle, that was already won by Melanie, The case is different, bad case will lose because in civil damages the loss has to be proven to be directly caused from the defendant.

    But in this country people have the right to file bad cases as well as good cases. Maybe she will win, maybe she won’t. Not my business. That is her business.

    I think what is bothering some of us are the underlying PC tinge to your reaction and Sebastian’s. I know you support the principle. But you are so afraid of offending. Open carry is all about shocking the sensibilities so people start to become accustom.

    More and more people want to open carry. It is more comfortable and convenient. I want non-permit ability to open or conceal however I want. I rather have a thigh holster rather one digging into my waist. Better when hiking or riding.

    I may never wear a gun to a soccer game since I don’t feel the need to overcome the hassle. But I want the ability to do so without fear of being arrested or questioned. I want this ability to be unquestioned. I don’t’ see any other way to get it unquestioned then by pushing the comfort zone.

    So I guess this is the difference between CCW adherents and OC adherents. CCW people hide their guns so not to create waves or to be a target of criminals. OC folk shout that they are freeman and women actively exercising the right to carry.

  18. That photo will jar sensibilities just as a photo of a woman in another setting with kids crowding will or a man with kids. Well tough crap. Those sensibilities will just be jarred until maybe they get used to it or ban it.

    Which is exactly the reason I worry about perceptions here. I will oppose a ban on open carry if it comes to it, but you’d be surprised how many gun owners will go along with the idea if they think the folks that are doing it are giving them a bad name in the eyes of the public.

  19. It wasn’t a casual photo. There’s a press photo credit. With individual subjects like this, they prefer to get releases. She likely filled one out for both her and her daughter. I’ve also worked with enough press staff to know their standard poses and the way they operate. I can assure you, this wasn’t a casual photo where they caught her on the field. This was posed.

  20. It was a photo taken on Sept 23 at a soccer game. Probably done by a reporter after the original event. I do not doubt she gave permission for the photo but I never heard it was deliberately posed. I agree the photo was jarring. But even the AP said it was simple hug not posed. However once they got it that would be the file photo.
    Kids will hug their parents and when parents carry openly kids may appear to be reaching for the gun. That is life and open carry folks should never be ashamed of that.
    So I contest your statement it was posed. You have no evidence.

    What good is a right if you can’t exercise it? If you are scared to exercise it, do you have a right? Properly there should be push back by gun rights advocates such as Sebastian and yourself. She handled her self-fine on TV and the debate and was a good advocate. Nothing done wrong there. Her physical appearance seems to have bothered lot of bigoted people about her weight by the comments. But that is irrelevant.

    I don’t’ think that disparaging her on a gun rights blogs is good PR either. This is not a private website but open to all readers.

    So I understand the fear, but being afraid to offend or being too PC is to concede the fight is to lose by fear. We can’t always pick the best cases that happen in real life and her case has become well known. She has done OK. I wish the case was worded differently as I stated, but that is her attorney’s work. No big loss if she doesn’t get a judgment. She got her permit back, which was the real fight.

  21. RAH,

    Bitter is correct. I had ongoing contact with Meleanie throughout her revocation process, and specifically remember her being contacted and asked for permission to be photographed. She agreed, and scheduled a time to be at the park for that photo. Other teams were practicing at the time.

    I do disagree a bit with Bitter about what the photo portrays, but obviously that’s subjective, so it’s not a matter of “right or wrong”. However, what she’s completely correct about are the circumstances in which the photo was taken.

  22. Sebastian gun owners who worry about being portrayed badly need to be reassured not given more reason to be scared. Gun owners need to be unashamed about their guns and right to carry and to hunt.

    Smokers who failed to fight back and conceded the courtesy issue lost totally because the anti smoking Nazis kept pushing relentlessly and the smokers passively accepted their guilt.

    Gun owners should no make the same mistake by agreeing there is something wrong about carry in public with kids.

    Hunters and the older folk need to be taught to be unashamed about this and no difference between their carrying a rifle and hunting that CCW and OC.

    Let’s encourage each other about these issues and not let them divide us.

  23. RAH,

    You make good points, but we also must be mindful that not every instance of “being out” is effective at winning the public over. As I said, I support open carry being legal, and I’ll be the first to admit it would be nice to be able to shed a jacket in a public setting while carrying without freaking people out, or having to worry about getting kicked out/fired/etc wherever I decide to do it. But we do not live in that world.

    Then the question becomes how to get from the world we live in, to the world where we can be completely “out” without people ogling at us like we’re the local freak show. That’s something that the gay rights movement provides a useful template, because they also have a spectrum of “out” that spans the range from helpful to destructive.

    I would suggest that gays have made fantastic gains by coming out of the closet, and to the extent that the open carry movement tries to bring that to the gun issue, I think it’s a good idea. But there is a risk at pushing well beyond the general public’s comfort level.

    Personally, if a bunch of gay guys want to parade down the street half naked, in leather, in order to raise awareness of the gay cause, I have no issue with their cause, nor do I question their right to indulge in that lifestyle. By the same token, in an ideal world, Melanie Hain ought to be able to carry to a youth soccer game openly without people actively freaking out. If I were a parent on that field, I would have been the first to try to explain to the other parents what’s going on, and reassure them that there is no danger.

    But we do not live in that world, and while Melanie Hain could have gotten away with carrying openly in a small town in Arizona without someone batting an eye, just as gay leather parades don’t ruffle any feathers on the streets of San Francisco, there are places and contexts where such displays will not do anything to convince folks that you’re normal, and deserve to be embraced by society.

    What made the gay rights movement successful was a lot of ordinary people telling others they were gay. Sure, there’s nothing wrong with attending a gay pride parade every once in a while, just as there’s nothing wrong, at the root, with practicing open carry while going about your daily life. But there’s a fine line between pushing society in the direction you want it to go, and punching it in the face.

    I think the open carry movement needs to avoid unwanted media attention. That really needs to be an imperative. The goal should be for people to notice folks with guns in their daily lives, not read about it in the newspapers, who you can count on to be unfair to us. Yes, sometimes trouble will find the open carrier, just as it found some of those early gay activists who stuck their necks out. But you end up in trouble, it needs to be because it found you — you don’t want to seek trouble out.

    As much as I wish we lived in a society where Melanie’s behavior were either not noticed, or just shrugged off, we don’t live in that world. I don’t think Melanie started this whole thing with the idea of creating a media sensation, but I think the media sensation was embraced as a way to forward the activism. That’s what I think has failed. It hasn’t failed because Melanie is a bad person, it’s failed because the media is not a place where we can fight this battle. I think the open carry movement needs to avoid the spotlight as much as it can, and when it finds itself in that, despite best efforts, needs to do as much as possible to get out of the spotlight. They need to look like unwilling participants. Anything else will make the public think the worst, and the media is only too happy to play on that.

  24. Sebastian,

    I just disagree. I first heard about OC when a WP story or maybe a Washington Times about a few VCDL having a meal and OC and accosted by police and guns taken. The police had to apologize and return the guns the next day. This was news story that told me that OC was legal in VA. Since then VCDL has been very effective at clearing signs and regulations at parks and other venues clearing the debris of years of gun regulations petty and invasive.

    Since then I have been more aware in gun blogs etc. I followed the Univ of Utah attempt to fight against carry on campus and cheered the win. Most would feel appalled about allowing immature students the ability to carry on campus. The University lost. Your method would not have challenged and never won.

    I feel your are taking counsel of your fears. I am older than you and saw the no regulation change to regulation and the assumed attitude that guns are bad and most people I associated with believed that. I did not; I grew up reading AA van Vogt and the “Weapons Shops of Isher” and Robert Heinlein stories. That insulated me from the prevailing liberal attitude.

    What totally amazed me is that CCW started in FL and then exploded throughout the states in 10 years. CCW was considered sneaky, heinous, rude and impolite to hide a weapon rather than being open since the early 20 th century. Yet in a very short period of time that attitude reversed. We should promote the reasonable of OC and other gun rights. The younger generation is very much amenable to that idea. If we won about CCW in all those states then changing the attitude from OC should be easy.

    I support hunting in all its forms even though I do not hunt. I support the EBR even though they do not appeal to me. I shoot skeet and and pistol bit not rifle. I am not against it just have not pushed into that sport.

    I support rural activities and feel that rural activities support our gun rights with culture and tradition. I support urban folk having the ability to have a gun in the home for self defense, I even support the idea that these same urban folk to carry on their person even if those people may come from the criminal class.

    I do not believe that all who carry openly will be suited to do so and will not react with rage with a gun. I accept the inherent risk of that factor. But that fear is very rational. After all many people use rage to intimidate and a gun just enhances that.

    I also believe the rule abiding CCW people as it expands will get less law abiding as those CCW people will not enforce self control and discipline. More and more half-cocked folks will get a CCW and misbehave. This will help the anti gun forces but the risk has to be accepted. I see the 3 percenters turning on their own side because the are trying to force a position that most have not yet decided.

    I implore your as you progress as a political activist to promote the unity of the position that free men and women can exercise their right to carry, to have that unquestioned. That this public position will support the hunters and shooting sports and their fancy guns and rifles.

    Freedom is messy and there will be mistakes and losses. But the last 15 years there have been immense victories. NRA was against a Heller case due to the immense risk, but Heller won on principle and we got rid of the immensely sensible idea of gun locks, which gun rights had, not have pushed back against. It was so appealing to most folk that we did not even argue against trigger locks and safe storage yet we won that as a freebie

    Please explained to those at the range that OC at a kid’s soccer game is no worse that OC on public lands to hunt. After all seeing a man walking in the fields and woods with rifle can be scary. In fact I have been at the woods when shots came toward me from yahoo kids who did not stop when I called out. I had to chase them down in the woods and I was on horseback. They hopefully learned a lesson in etiquette when shooting in woods and can’t see everything. I have been in the area when hunters were shooting and we could not see each other. But courtesy worked and we both used the same area safely. I have known friends lose valuable horses from poachers who though in the fog they were deer. These poachers also shot from the car and dropped a deer right in the driveway. Not polite. But I did not stop from my support of hunters on public and private lands. The simple fact that people will abuse the use of a gun and be foolish, careless, reckless and non considerate, but never the less we all have that same right to own, use and carry a weapon.

    I see Sebastian the caution of a budding politician and understand your fear; I just think you should not disparage those small fights in the trenches that define those rights. Ohio has been trying to get a consistent law on gun carry and how to stop police from hassle OC and CCW people. This is an education sometime unwilling to the police. But each case of a citizen winning the battle that they do have the rights shows the progress until the police will help educate the scared callers.

    Ms. Hain is just one of those in the trench educating by real reported cases that PA residents have the right to OC in PA. She won against the nanny state tyrant in the soccer league the ex. Judge who tried to push his opinion it was wrong to carry at the park. She won against the sheriff who helps the nanny state tyranny of ex judges, despite their personal opinion they had to give back her permit. They found that they cannot wily nilly yank a permit on persona emotional reaction. Gun owners will use the tools of the laws to keep their rights and push back against all those petty regulations.

    The merits of her case are questionable but they do not harm and a loss wills not overall effect the lesson that she reinforced that OC is the law.

    Freedom is won by the little cases of infringements pushed back against, each case reinforces the other. No risk no gain.

    What I would like is that you convince, cajole and persuade those you come in contact that OC and CCW is nothing to be ashamed. That reasonable people will continue to be reasonable. That self-protection is an inalienable right that you really believe in.

    As Bitter has promoted that we need to support each other interests and be united. Each win will come from real people and real cases and we can’t always pick the appealing person to support a case.

    So do not lose the battle from fear of losing, and then we have lost before we begin. Do not allow PC to lose the battle for you. OC and CCW is nothing to be ashamed. Just convince others in gun world that is so and then the non-gunnies that are ambivalent. Many non-gunnies will have an experience that will change their mind, like mugging or home invasion. This is not a GOP vs. Democrat issue. Self-defense and gun rights cut across both parties.

  25. RAH sez: “I see the 3 percenters turning on their own side because the are trying to force a position that most have not yet decided.”

    Three Percenters are unable to “turn on their own side” because we have ONLY our own side, that is, we have declared our position of principle and having no illusion about what that means, we don’t give a fart in a high wind about what others think about it.

    Pragmatists seem to be ever willing to throw other gun owners under the bus because “they don’t make us look good” (this entire thread), or, “we have to pick our legal battles because the other side might win,” (let me count the ways) or “its their own fault” (Olofson). Yet events rush at us all, forcing individual choices.

    It is not the principle you object to, it is being forced by other people’s actions to make a public choice about where you will stand on that principle.

    The ironic thing is that you are setting yourself up for defeat by being entirely and wafflingly reactive. The other side is a rapacious collectivist beast and uses every tactic fair or foul against you to continue to steal your liberty and property and you believe that they will be deterred by appeals to law, common sense or history.

    They don’t give a rat’s hindquarters about that because they have beating you every trip of that political train. It is the BRADY BUNCH who are embracing Heller and shoving on through the holes created thereby. This is a clue.

    But we cannot “turn on our own side” because we have never counted on y’all as being on “our side.” This is so because we watch what you do, not what you say.

    From David Olofson to OC soccer moms, that is perfectly clear. If you want to argue amongst yourselves about how many public relations angels can dance on the head of your pragmatic pin, that is perfectly fine with us. Just keep us Threepers out of your fuzzy thinking, and we’ll go back to standing on our principles while you find ways to shuffle, shuck and jive around yours. — Vanderboegh

  26. Mike,
    This was not about 3 % but about all gun rights promoters which by your writing you also belong. Mostly it is an arguement about tactics not principle.

    Principle is fine but when reality hits how strong does one fight for principle? It the typical devil in the details.

    Ms Hain won the larger principle case, the sherriff was wrong about revoking her permit. The money for damages is different.

    The Brady Bunch has no standing in that suit and if they want to waste their money, fine. It won’t help their cause any either.

    The only positive on the damages suit if won for gunnies is that there is a cost to infringing on rights. That is geeat but if she loses not a big deal.

    Speeches are fine bit actions such as the OC wearers speak louder. When they are accosted they push back the regulation boundaries of the police. This retrievals of each little bit of freedom is good. Of course there is a risk that if the greater number of electorate get scared of OC theymay push to ban it. I rate that risk very small. Sebastian rates the risk higher.

    I encourage Sebastian his reach out efforts to educate and promote support of OC and the wearers to the gun sport enthusiates and hunters he meets at ranges and clubs.

    The more that those people support the more secure those rights are. We need to secure our base and then the non base to get unquestioned support of our rights.

  27. I’m sorry, I don’t see Bitter or Sebastian’s comments as “throwing her under the bus”, I see it as an objective view of the situation, granted one that I agree with entirely. Claiming they’re “piling on” or trying to be “PC” is folly.

    The fact remains, the population who are not worried about gun rights one way or another can easily be swayed to either side by incidents like this. That picture made me uncomfortable, and I’m as much of a 2nd amendment supporter as there is. Reality is that any gun owner who does something completely stupid makes us all look bad, and if someone can explain to me WHY you would need to open carry a pistol at a soccer game, in broad daylight, I’d love to hear the rationalization.

    This incident, with her proudly wearing his pistol in the open, with her child’s hand right beside it has to make the Brady bunch drool in pleasure, I’d bet they reproduce it in their flyer’s as proof that allowing gun ownership is irresponsible based on that one example of stupidity.

    And to the comment that the anti-gun crowd would love to see her raped, in a situation with both she and I unarmed, I would not challenge her at all, she’d likely be able to “whup” me pretty good. She’s hardly some fragile flower of a girl.

  28. The second amend to keep and bear arms does not depend on need. So many 2A people fall into that thinking. OC people are fighting to correct that. If you do not need to carry at a game, why carry in a store CCW or OC?

  29. CCW people like there guns hidden. OC people do not want the hassle of having to hide the gun like it is something to be ashamed of.

    If a person wants to be armed then they should be allowed to be armed. There are times I would like to be armed and a lot of times I don’t. My state does not allowed carry

  30. I wouldn’t make a needs based argument. I have little issue with the fact that she open carried to the soccer game, so much as that she kept doing it when she realized other parents were uncomfortable with it. She did have the option of going concealed, since she had a license to do so. I do not think Ms. Hain should have faced legal sanction or criminal charges for what she did, but she can’t escape social pressure, both from people who are uncomfortable with moms carrying guns to kids soccer games, and from gun owners who don’t like being made to look like jackasses. I support the right to free speech too, but that’s not to say I’m going to support a sports parent who shouts at and heckles other parents. You might have a right, but that doesn’t mean you’re not a jackass.

  31. RAH, there you go generalizing people you don’t even know. I could care less if you carry concealed or open, it makes no never mind to me either way. The fact remains that this lady sought to push the point with open carry at a venue I’m sure she knew many would find it uncomfortable to see. The people she shocked at this soccer game ARE the people WE need to accept legal owners rights to carry a firearm, it’s clear we don’t have the numbers to force the government to allow us to enjoy our rights alone. Public opinion can be for us or against us, and a single act like this will push public opinion against us.

    It seems to me that concealed carry makes more sense, you have the protection you want, and it’s done in a manner that the more sensitive among us are not concerned about a gun being present. Carrying open carry, though legal in many places, is going to upset some people, and sure as hell makes cops worried as well. Carrying open puts a picture in the mind of the non-gun crowd of what the Wild West looked like.

    And in truth, I don’t see Melanie actually being a strong open carry advocate, rather, she presented a situation she knew would provoke an action by police, and now she’s looking for the big check at taxpayer expense.

  32. Sebastian, I know you would not make a “needs” argument. It is just disheartening to see other pro 2A folk state that she had “ no need”, and why rock the boat. I also know that you support OC.

    I know a lot of CCW people are really against or uncomfortable with OC. At least by their comments on various sites. Most OC will support CCW. But CCW people often do not return the support. That is why we need to consolidate the base. Hunters to support CCW and OC. CCW people support OC and vice versa. When we divide over this we undercut our argument to the non-gunnies who don’t really have an informed opinion because they never thought deeply about the subject.

    I think the strongest argument for OC is that it does not require a permit. It is grating to think that to exercise a civil right we have to have a permit. That may be a good post; do the CCW holders think that it is better to have a permit and the background checks to weed out the undesirables? CCW is a privilege not a right. To carry is the right, but how? How restrictive do we want the ability to carry? Only among fellow gunnies and not among the general public? CCW allows carrying among the general public since it is hidden. OC by its nature, does not. Should OC be only at ranges or in company with other like-minded people? PA constitution seems to state that the right to OC is greater than the LTC permit.

    How can we convince the rest of the electorate that gun rights and carry should be unquestioned when we are divided ourselves?

  33. Uh, maybe by NOT taking an action that is going to piss off every person there who is on the fence about either open or concealed carry.

    I’ve known too many people like Ms. Hain, who are convinced they can do as they damned well like, and screw the rest of the world. I still say she pushed the issue knowing the reaction it would provoke to force the cops to act, and get the win in court to prove she’s right. And to get the big payday that some people seem to feel is their right in this country, money for nothing!

    We can go on forever talking about how things should be, but unless you have the support of the segment of society that isn’t on either the pro or anti side of the gun argument, you’ll lose ground to the anti gun crowd, simply by giving the general public the impression that we’re irresponsible as a entire group, not just a few extreme people.

    Deals like this impact us just as negatively as the case of the 9 year old who was killed at a full auto fire event up in NE a few months back, especially after it came to light that the person supervising the 9 year old on the firing line was a 15 year old kid. How any responsible gun owner or event organizer is stupid enough to have a minor as the range officer in charge of a 9 year old still shocks me. How any parent is so ignorant as to allow a 9 year old to fire a Uzi with just a 15 year old supervising him amazes me as well. But I guess it’s true, you can’t fix stupid!

  34. I agree the 9 year old killed with the mini machine pistol was a major error. I have been pleasantly surprised that Brady has not trumpeted that to the skies.

    But I wonder if Stick thinks OC a bad thing since it as Uncle says’ Scares the white people”. Many CCW holders think OC is dangerous and can negatively impact gun rights. Sebastian has worried about that.

    Because by Stick argument any OC wearer is pushing the issue. That is exactly what OC is often about. To exercise a right not often done.

    The hope is that people will get used to it. I am sure they can as they can get used to anything. But the better response is does the general public want to get used to OC and I would guess not.

    I have to agree that OC wearers to have to be responsible since they are a public face. Most have been very reponsible and been good PR. I do not think Ms Hain was irresponsible to wear in a park during a soccer game. If one is going to carry that means everywhere. Unless moms with young kids should not carry?

    I guess the answer is that OC has a long way to go to get acceptance among the gunnies. The younger generation will probably be more enthusiatic and it may be a more a generational thing. I really do not know.

  35. Rah:
    Again, using a broad brush, and generalizing to try and make your point. I could care less if a person opts to carry openly or concealed, but the fact remains that gun owners who do carry are in the minority in this country, and every instance like this pushes public opinion against us practicing that right.

    To me, if I feel a need to carry in an instance where there are going to be people who would feel threatened by a firearm being present, I’ll opt to carry it concealed if licensed to do so. That’s hardly a concession to practicing my rights, it’s being aware of the feelings of non-carry people toward seeing a loaded firearm.

    I feel we have to choose our battles responsibly, and intelligently. Ray Charles could see that carrying openly to a soccer game or practice is going to upset a lot of people there.

    I’d ask you to refrain from making statements as to what I feel or don’t feel, since clearly you don’t know me from Adam and I’m not taking the leap toward saying what your beliefs are or aren’t. Offer the same respect if you expect it shown toward you.

  36. Happy New Year!

    I hope that Sebastian and Bitter’s 2009 is better than 2008. Stick, if I offended you, then I apologize. I do not mean to impute words and opinions to you that you do not share. I was a bit put off at the “needs” argument. I hear that so much from the anti gun folk that it seems wrong to hear it from a 2A supporter. However I appreciate that you choose to continue to post. I agree mostly with what you said about how choosing the battle responsibly and that you personally don’t care how someone carries, just not create a bad or cocky impression on non-gun folks.

    I know the OC agenda is to normalize the carry of a gun so people can get used to it and that does carry a risk. I don’t impute the motives you gave to Ms. Hain but some enthusiasts do get carried away and it is more polite to conceal so as not disturb parents and kids at a game. I was trying to explore why this particular case of open carry has created displeasure among many in the gun rights community. Also why it bothers people to carry at a child’s game is more wrong than carrying in a movie theatre.

    I wonder if why it bothers people is that a game is so innocent and by carrying a gun openly is dissonant note of hard danger that is not welcomed.

    I did not see the Fox interview but she handled herself fine at the debate on local TV with the gun banners presented. Any way have a great new year.

  37. RAH,
    I don’t get angry in discussions (or at least try not to), no matter how much I disagree with a person’s opinion. I think that’s supposed to be the difference between adults and children talking, as adults we are supposed to be able to disagree and not become disagreeable with each other.

    I just see this as a case where this lady is trying to prove a point in the wrong way to bring support from those who could care less about carrying firearms, UNTIL they are presented with an extreme example like this. I think we shoot ourselves in the foot taking the direction this lady has.

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