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Report from the Front

A report from the protest outside of Shooter’s Shop:

I was rather unimpressed by the numbers that ceasefire and heeding god’s call drew.

I drove by and saw what looked like 50 people out front, and thought “Gee.. this is gonna fun”. Once I arrived at the shop, and started talking to people, I realized that from the 50 people, half were on our side, a quarter were police, and the other quarter were the nutjobs.

Also, props to Son of the Revolution. That man came prepared, and the antis were simply no match for his debate skills and facts.

So it would seem we outnumbered them. That’s good to hear, though I feel bad I couldn’t make it.

UPDATE: Some video coverage here. I’m not sure there’s honestly anything to gain by trying to argue with the other side. The folks who show up to these things are true believers. You won’t convince them. In the mean time there will be reporters there taking note of everything said, and the worst of it is going to end up in the papers.

UPDATE: More video, talking to the media, which I think is helpful if you know your shit, and this guy seems to.

UPDATE: Fairly unbiased reporting of the event from the Inquirer.

UPDATE: From the sounds of things, it would seem that Shooter Shop has their act together. They were checking IDs at the doors to prevent a repeat of the “sit in” protest experienced by Colosimo. Plus they had their attorney on hand to speak to the media. According to this person, they also asked people not to open carry, probably because they know how the media would likely spin it.

UPDATE: It would appear Shooter Shop is generally pretty careful about checking IDs:

I would like to clarify, the police were not checking ID’s, they were employees of the Shooter Shop. The shop has been requiring ID from all patrons for some time now. Nobody enters the shop without ID unless they are known to the shop. This practice helps prevent potential robbery and straw purchases. A person who is ID at the door is less likely to enter and commit any type of crime. Though there is no sure fire way to prevent any sort of crime, we feel this acts as a deterrent.

I agree considering the neighborhood that this is a reasonable precaution, and I agree it’s likely to discourage criminals. So why is Heeding God’s Call protesting a gun shop that, at considerable expense, is hiring Act 235 certified security guards, to prevent straw purchasing and other criminal activity that can facilitate guns ending up in the wrong hands. This seems like a responsible shop. Do the anti-gun people want to argue that people who live in crime ridden neighborhoods don’t deserve the same access to personal protection that middle-class people enjoy in the ‘burbs?

16 Responses to “Report from the Front”

  1. Mike says:

    Wow. Judging by the videos, a lot of the people who showed up to oppose HGC did a huge disservice to gun owners. Yelling obscenities, waving flags around, singing God Bless America again and again, telling people they’re un-American, assholes, etc? Seriously? Way to look like nutjobs. Way to do it in front of the media.

    If these clowns (the ones with guns) show up every week, we’re @#$%ed.

  2. Sebastian says:

    There’s a certain amount of impolite discourse that’s to be expected among Philadelphians, and that wouldn’t be out of place. But I generally would agree there’s not much to gain by confronting the other side. Though waving flags and singing God Bless America isn’t really a bad thing, is it? I mean, you want to protest and stand up for your cause, you just don’t want to come off as the bad guys in the public eye.

  3. Mike says:

    Singing God Bless America and waving flags isn’t a bad thing, unless it feeds into a pre-existing negative stereotype about gun owners and their red necks, pick up trucks, and all that.

    Don’t get me wrong – I love songs and flags as much as the next guy, but in this context, they’re not helpful.

    Judging by those videos, I’d say the pro-gunners handed them a massive win. Any unbiased person witnessing that would have seen one side as civil and the other side as nutjobs. And the nutjobs were all about guns.

    Sigh.

  4. Dan R says:

    That guy that “seemed to know his shit ” when talking to the media was ME ! :))

    aka son of the revolution over on PAFOA.

    I will say Im not surprised but very dissapointed that the Inquirer reporter only saw fit to quote to parsed phrases out of a several minute long interview.

  5. Sebastian says:

    Well, they wouldn’t want to go reporting anything that made us look good, would they?

  6. Mike,

    I thought Sebastian had a case of the Zero Defects, but I believe you take the cake.

    Singing God Bless America and waving flags isn’t a bad thing, unless it feeds into a pre-existing negative stereotype about gun owners and their red necks, pick up trucks, and all that.

    If your over-riding concern is that something a firearms owner does, no matter how innocuous, is going to feed into a “pre-existing negative stereotype”, then maybe you’re better off staying on the sidelines.

    I learned something in boot camp, namely that there’s roughly 10% of any group who are fucktards. General population, Marines, Army, conservatives, liberals … you name it.

    You will never, never have a demonstration of any kind, anywhere, for any reason that you won’t have members of the 10% there.

    And someone, someone is going to get it on film.

    And I personally don’t have a problem with calling an asshole, an asshole.

  7. Yelling obscenities

    I’m shocked, shocked that there would be obscenities uttered in the city of Philadelphia.

    Heh.

  8. Mike says:

    @The Packetman: I agree, there will always be a small number of fucktards who show up. But if you watch the videos, it’s about 80% fucktards on our side. The problem is, the HGC folks don’t come off as fucktards. They come off as naive, idealistic, etc, but they pro-gun protesters take the fucktard cake by leaps and bounds.

    The real problem with the flag wavers isn’t so much the flag waving and calling the church goers assholes, it’s that they should have known better – far in advance. Like at the stage when they were packing the flags into the car. Temperamental folks who lack emotional intelligence are the worst people to show up to a media event in favor of gun rights, IMHO.

    The behavior of the pro-gun folks, on the whole, was disgraceful. I felt *embarrassed* for them. Luckily the Inquirer fellow spoke to one of the articulate members of the crowd and not one of the potty mouths. And luckily none of them were dumb enough to OC.

    Unfortunately, I think all HGC has to do is keep showing up and eventually some gunny protester will do or say something stupid and it’ll become a scandal requiring legislative intervention. HGC may even be counting on that. It seems like the folks who showed up were easily riled up. If the tables were turned, and one of their weaknesses was that they were easily excitable, I’m sure we’d play on it. So if I were in their shoes, that would be my new strategy. And it would work.

  9. Sebastian says:

    I probably have a bit more faith than you do, Mike. I’m certainly not against making a good showing, and you’d probably find I’d agree with you on what good and bad tactics are, but if you ask people to show up at something, people will, and that’s going to come with all the benefits and drawbacks of that. To some degree you just have to suffer people not living up to the standard you’d want.

    I’ve certainly been a voice for smart tactics, and wise strategy, but at some point you have to work with the grassroots you have, not the grassroots you want.

  10. Mike,

    Fucktard: You keep using that word ….. I do not think it means what you think it means.

    I watched both videos and saw none of the bad behaviour that you did, with the exception of the unidentified female (?) who shouted ‘You suck’. And the only description of flag-waving and God Bless America-singing came from the Inquirer report, that Sebastian even qualified as ‘(f)airly unbiased’.

    As Sebastian said, asking for people to show up is the gift horse; what you’re doing is looking it in the mouth.

  11. Mike says:

    PM, there are six videos:
    http://s807.photobucket.com/albums/yy360/cloveless/

    That woman shouts a lot more than “You suck” in them. I think the gift horse dies when you see the other 4 videos..

  12. TheZog says:

    Just FYI. The 235 guys at the shop were there pro bono. I have been a friend of the owner for a decade and was happy to be there.

    /guy at the door.

  13. Mike,

    I’ll stand corrected; that behavior was kinda bad.

    But I still maintain that if you’re trying to have a perfect protest (whatever the hell that is), you’ll be waiting a long, long time.

  14. RugerRoy says:

    Have any of you read the code of conduct heeding god’s call is asking the gun shop to sign and abidde by? It seems like a lot of judgement is flying back and forth on both sides of this arguement. But for I judge these people as wacko’s I want to know what they are asking of the Gun owners. Are they protesting the Second Amendment or are they truely trying to stop violence in the city? So does anyone know where I can get a hold of their code of conduct?

  15. Sebastian says:

    How about not selling you another gun if you ever have one stolen? How about extra paperwork if you ever have a gun stolen? All your data being shared with the City of New York.

    Most of the rest is shit dealers already do. Plus, who the fuck is Heeding God’s Call to demand anything of anyone? Heeding God’s Call is not the regulator for the gun industry. That’s ATF’s job. If they think ATF isn’t doing a good job, they can take it up with ATF, or Congress.

  16. Tim says:

    Looks like they stirred up more dust than they thought.

    http://blog.sojo.net/2010/02/26/beauty-and-ugliness-in-a-shootings-aftermath/

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