Enlisting Retired and Former Military

A lot of blogs have been talking about this article in Esquire that’s just full of fail. I don’t really have anything to say about people who ignorantly prattle on about Heller and the law when they clearly have actually read none of it. My only commentary is that there’s been a renewed push across the gun control spectrum to recruit military members to speak out against the rights of Americans, and betray their oaths. A few weeks ago it was Mark Kelly, and it’s also been Bloomberg as well. My guess is this is fruit of that effort.

UPDATE: More here.

20 thoughts on “Enlisting Retired and Former Military”

  1. Serving military officers generally avoid making public political statements. Bateman seems to be the exception. He has written a number of articles for Esquire, The Nation, MSNBC, and Media Matters. He also has had a long running feud with classicist and historian Prof. Victor Davis Hanson over one of Hanson’s many books.

    Given all of his lefty pronouncements and the military’s general avoidance of political statements, I am a bit surprised that no superior hasn’t told Bateman to STFU or, in the alternative, to resign his commission. How he has gotten away with some of the crap he’s written -while still in uniform – is nothing short of amazing.

    1. Perhaps the higher-ups of the higher-ups *coughOBAMAcough* like what he’s saying, and don’t mind him smearing the reputation of the military while he’s running his gob.

  2. Is he really active duty? Because if so he’s really skirting the edge of AR 600-20’s prohibition of partisan political activities, especially since he goes out of his way to point out his military experience.

    Also, I would remind him of the oath that he and I both took to defend the Constitution of United States against all enemies, foreign *AND* domestic. I took it to heart when I read it. Maybe he didn’t, or maybe it was so long ago for him that he has forgotten what it meant.

    But to address some of his points specifically:

    2. We will pry your gun from your cold, dead, fingers. That is because I am willing to wait until you die, hopefully of natural causes. Guns, except for the three approved categories, cannot be inherited. When you die your weapons must be turned into the local police department, which will then destroy them. (Weapons of historical significance will be de-milled, but may be preserved.)

    Fine. We’ll just make more. Semi and full auto firearms are a 120 year old technology, and crude but effective versions can be easily built. You can even build an AK from a manure shovel:

    4. We will submit a new tax on ammunition. In the first two years it will be 400 percent of the current retail cost of that type of ammunition. (Exemptions for the ammo used by the approved weapons.) Thereafter it will increase by 20 percent per year.

    Nobody told him about reloading? Well, I guess because he gets his ammo for free, and it’s all factory made, it hasn’t occurred to him that tens of thousands of people reload their own ammo.

    1. Do you really think that reloaders will be able to get primers and powder? I hear reloaders brag all the time about how they are immune from laws like this, but ignore the fact that primers are the weak point.

      More to the point, every cop in the nation is driving around with a box of ammo in his car. If it ever came to a civil war, a single bullet will get you whatever ammo he is carrying.

      1. Well to presume the fantasy world…. there’s apparently “approved” types of guns.

        Which… are often the same caliber as the “bad” guns.

        So you buy “good” brass and use it in “bad” guns?

        Don’t even had to reload.

        You’d think an infantry officer would have some familiarity with the basics.

    2. He’s really Active Duty. I looked him up on AKO. He is serving as an adviser in England.

      For whatever it’s worth, the people that should be made aware of this have been made aware. I am not certain that anything will come of it but the right bugs are in the right ears.

  3. (Exemptions for the ammo used by the approved weapons.)

    How is he going to distinguish between the .223 Remington used bolt action varmint rifles and the .223 Remington used in the guns he wants to ban.

    What he seems to fail to realize is that most popular sporting cartridges are either military caliber or based on a military caliber. There is no way to separate the .308 Winchester used in a deer rifle from the .308 Winchester used in an AR-10 or an FN-FAL.

    Literally, he has no idea what he’s talking about.

    1. they don’t necessarily fail to realize it; if you’re trying to massively ban guns, you probably don’t actually care if you DO ban sporting cartridges.

  4. The reason that this succeeds for the gun grabbers is that they argue from emotion, and people who fall for that are susceptible to appeals to perceived authority. It also helps that people in general and leftists in particular are pretty ignorant of military matters.

    It’s important to remember, and to point out to anybody who reads something like this twaddle in Esquire, that military officers above a certain rank are politicians more than soldiers, and that in certain lines of work they become politicians at even lower ranks. An infantry LTC could be commanding an infantry battalion after working his way there as a platoon leader, company commander and battalion executive officer. On the other hand, if you look at Bateman’s bio at Small Wars Journal and other places, you’ll see the universities he’s taught at and the books he’s written. In other words, you’re not reading the opinion of a warrior concerned about his country, you’re reading the opinion of a social climber concerned with pleasing his political masters.

  5. I had never heard of this character Bateman before today, but the deeper I delve into this clowns muck the more amazed I am.

    This most recent trolling by Batemen in December’s Esquire is not the first time he has addressed gun politics. In fact the current piece is almost a cut and paste self-plagiarism of his earlier essay in a September Esquire.


    What’s really charming about that older essay is something he decided not to regurgitate for his current piece, his desire to deport millions of Americans who don’t agree with his anti-gun politics…

    4. We believe that advocates of massive home armaments/weapons stores should be sent to a country where this is a reality and see how well that is working out for the inhabitants of that nation. Specifically, we propose mass deportation of those who espouse this theory to the place where they can see it in action. To wit, Baghdad, Iraq, where every household is entitled to own and maintain an AK-47. Said relocation is to be paid for by the USG.


    Wow. John Stewart better watch out for this guy. Or perhaps Bateman’s ‘satire’ is really heartfelt? Maybe Bateman really wants a civil war over guns. In any case Bateman’s style of demagoguery shows an amazing lack of decorum for an active duty officer in the US Army. Conduct unbecoming anyone?

    When you twin his demagoguery with his published contempt of a senior justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, it’s amazing to me that he hasn’t been reigned in or even forced to resign by his superior officers. Just think of the lovely precedent Bateman is now setting for fellow officers. Or at least the opportunity DOD defense lawyers will now have to protect conservative officers who have been accused of dabbling too much in politics by using Bateman as an example of permissible behavior.

    1. I’m confused. His proposal is to deport pro-gun folks to places where there are lots of guns, as if the pro-gun folks don’t already live in such places?

      What is he going to do? Population-swap Arkansas and Oklahoma?
      As a Texan, being deported to Okie-land and Arkie-land would not be fun, but it would be survivable.

      The core problem in Baghdad isn’t the AK. It’s “takfir”

    2. They always say there wouldn’t be any genocide here in the US, clearly here we have another example of how “they” think, they want to get rid of all those who disagree with them.
      I’m willing to bet he didn’t want to come out and admit that he was in favor of mass executions of “gun owners”, so he came up with the deportation idea.

      Do not give up your guns, do not give them an inch, if you do, they will find a way to kill those who oppose them.

      1. Bateman is a great example of the enemy. A true-believer anti-gunner who is a member of the new self-selected ruling class aristocracy, a member of the entertainment/news-media/academic/bureaucratic complex.

        Whatever else Bateman is, he can not claim ignorance to explain away his hatred and ill-will. If confronted I doubt Bateman would admit that any of his proposed measures would really achieve the supposed goals of the anti-gun movement, reducing the number of guns in America or reducing the number of “gun deaths”. No doubt he would wave away lack of results as “a step in the right direction.” And the anti-gunners like guns just fine in the hands of bodyguards, police and the army. What they really object to is guns in our hands, the hands of rednecks, conservatives, or libertarians. No, the real objective of the anti-gun movement is not crime or guns, the real goal is to get us. We are the real target of the anti-gun movement. That is why Bateman pines for our mass deportation.

        The anti-gun movement is about wielding and gaining political power, not controlling guns. The power to reward friends and punish enemies.

  6. Why is it that all these guys all use the same argument? “the supreme court got it wrong” “heller says we can still have restrictions” “well regulated means we can ban and tax whatever we want” etc.
    Maybe it’s because it’s so short after Metcalf lost his marbles, but it seems like there’s a rash of these goofballs in authority who need to spout this BS.
    Did they all get $100k checks or something from CSGV?

  7. A lot of active duty officers talk politics these days, but most of them are right wingers, so that makes it okay? When they retire from their service, they go to work for the contractors and lobby the ones still in. I can’t really complain about this, though. My late cousin did this, and he died quite wealthy, leaving a lot of money to his relatives. While he was in the USMC in the 40s thru early 60s, retiring as a light colonel, he wrote a lot of letters to the editor of various newspapers stating his rank and branch of service. No one ever objected to his views on politics, even when they were far to the right of Goldwater. I also saw a lot of anti-war type officers speaking out while on active duty in the last years of the Vietnam War, and no one told them to shut up.
    Bateman’s a lefty, and his views on the 2nd Amendment are questionable, but interesting and thought provoking.
    However, his feud with “Venereal Disease” Hanson is a lot of fun to watch. Hanson is under the delusion that he is one of the great military historians of our time, but most professional military historians and a lot of serious amateurs(including me) think that he is a bad joke at the very least. I took graduate level military history classes, and the distinguished professor refused to allow anyone to use Hanson as a source. When I managed a small bookstore on the side soon afterward, I made a point of putting Hanson’s books in with the Dungeons and Dragons fantasy novels, and that was probably better than he deserved.
    The fact that he is correct regarding Hanson makes him more creditable, IMNSHO.

    1. “Bateman’s a lefty, and his views on the 2nd Amendment are questionable, but interesting and thought provoking.”

      Interesting? Thought provoking? Really? Did you read any of Bateman’s trolling that was linked to? How is the advocation of the mass deportation of political opponents thought provoking. Thought provoking like Mein Kampf?

      And Bateman’s criticism of VDH is supposed to make him more credible on gun issues? Really? More like Bateman’s demagoguery on gun politics destroys his credibility regarding VDH.

      As a thought experiment, I’ve always wondered just where the American Left could find anyone in armed forces willing to turn their guns on fellow American citizens in support of the Left’s crazed crusade to ban guns. I think Bateman is their man. Hell, he could be their supreme commander. The more I read of his material at Esquire the more convinced I am.

  8. Officers like Bateman should serve as an argument against blanket trusting the military to do the right thing.

    Benedict Arnold started out a loyal officer and a war hero.

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