james yeager, helping the "gun control" extremists

Considering that my posts documenting how James Yeager is a coward and how he violated the Tennessee constitution are getting an unusual amount of traffic in recent days, I thought I would take a brief moment to comment on Yeager’s most recent bout of mind-numbing stupidity wherein he stated, "If it goes one inch further, I’m going to start killing people!".

First, just like the Sandy Hook Elementary School murderer, James Yeager is not representative of the average firearm owner, nor is he representative of the average pro-rights activist*. Using those two disgusting (for differing reasons) individuals to paint all firearm owners or pro-rights activists as murderous whackjobs looking for any and all excuses to fly off the handle is nothing more than a hasty generalization logical fallacy – a specious stereotype, in other words – and should be ridiculed and discarded as such.

Second, I refuse to allow my rights to be limited simply because one person who happens to own similar pieces of machined metal as I do cannot keep his temper in check. Or, to put it another way, one nutcase losing his gos-se on an internet video is a wholly insufficient reason to limit everyone else’s rights. You and I both may not like what Yeager says, and, speaking personally, I would very much prefer if he were to crawl in a deep, dark hole and pull it in after him, but so far as I can tell, he is operating within the bounds of the right protected by the First Amendment, and damned if I will not defend that right as much as the one protected by the Second Amendment.

Third, if you have ever received any training from James Yeager in regards to firearms, deadly force, or other related topics, I would strongly recommend that you seek out additional training from other sources such as Mas Ayoob, Larry Vickers, Todd Green, Front Sight, Gunsite, and countless other sources I do not know or cannot remember at the moment (note: I have no affiliation with the places or people named and have received no training from any of them). Why? The training Yeager provided you may have been technically and functionally accurate, but do you really want the prosecution of your self-defense hearing/trial holding up the video of Yeager claiming he is going to "start killing people" as an example of the person who trained you to shoot down that poor choir boy who was only trying to collect money for the Salvation Army mugger/rapist/murder/etc.? Being able to counter with examples of significantly-more-up-standing individuals in the self-defense training community might prove useful.

Fourth, do not even get me started on the cowardice of yanking the above video, claiming he does not retract any of his statements, and then whinging about people re-uploading the original video. If he had pulled the original clip and put up some kind of apology or somesuch in its place, I might consider giving him some credit… but this kind of response screams "hand caught in the cookie jar". Poor baby.

Fifth and finally, James Yeager and his company "Tactical Response" thankfully do not appear to be qualified to provide Tennessee Handgun Carry Permit instruction/training, but Yeager has been lying about his "certifications". I particularly enjoy how his site now says "TN Department of Safety Certified Firearms Instructor (formerly)", when the TN DOS representative TPM quotes states "there is no such certification offered".

[Update] On a related note to Yeager lying about his non-existent "certification" from TN DOS, it would appear as though his handgun carry permit has been revoked by the state of Tennessee "based on a ‘material likelihood of risk of harm to the public’". I cannot say as though I agree with that reasoning being acceptable to revoke a permit, and I have to wonder why that reasoning did not come into play during Yeager’s childish "duel" challenges, but there it is. [/Update]

In closing, like I said on Twitter, I would like to take a moment and thank James Yeager for providing the "gun control" extremists all the ammunition they will need to paint all firearm owners as equally deranged, murderous, and psychotic as he is… as if we did not have enough of that going on with the Sandy Hook murderer as it was. There are a fair number of people I sincerely wish were not "on my side", but this guy is pretty much at the top at the moment…

Of course, while I say that, rumor has it that James Yeager will be on the Ed Show (whatever the hell that is) on MSNBC tonight. Frakking awesome. We could have calm, cool, collected folks like Mr. Colion Noir represent us on national television, but instead we get flaming nutbags like Yeager. Good to see yellow journalism is still alive and well…

(* – I imagine James Yeager would get along with the woefully self-destructive "threeper" community just fine , what with his above-quoted line and absolute lack of any actual action on his part, but even I would not force this over-steroided gas-bag on even that community.)

fair warning and good advice

Once again, I will not be attending SHOT Show (mostly because I will be saving up money for a significantly less exciting trip in the hopefully-near future), but those of you who are going should bear this in mind:

I just received some disturbing news about this year’s SHOT Show from a well respected member of the firearms industry. The mainstream media will be at the 2013 SHOT Show in force with the express purpose of furthering their anti-gun agenda.

(Emphasis in the original.)

If you are surprised by this, frankly, where have you been for the past month? SHOT Show is the first major, national firearm-related event immediately following the Newtown, CT shooting, and you can bet your very last bullet that every major news manufacturer (and I use that term intentionally) out there will be canvassing the convention looking for firearm owners to frame as the next Sandy Hook Murderer (name intentionally omitted). And, yes, that is exactly what they will be doing – they will not care about whatever facts, figures, or statistics you care to present, or how reasonable and level-headed you appear; they will only be looking at how best to portray you as a heavily-armed whackadoodle inches away from snapping.

So I concur with the advice of the folks at Great Satan, Inc.:

Here’s the best advice I’ve heard to counter this unwelcome infiltration: DON’T SPEAK TO THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA AT SHOT SHOW. My friend in the industry made some suggestions that I’d like to pass on – Be polite, and rather than say “no comment”, just tell them that you are busy and can’t talk right now. Do not forget that these people are not reasonable people and do not want a discussion. Please realize that despite your best efforts, there is no answer or statement you can give that can’t and won’t be used against all of us.

(Emphasis again in the original.)

I will not go so far as to say you should avoid everyone with a camera or notepad (and neither does GS,I, for that matter), since a huge number of my gunblogging brethren will be there with their hardware, but I would get in the habit of asking attempted interviewers who they are and who they represent before responding.

Try not to give the anti-rights cultists any more ammunition than they already have.

(And for those of you who are going, we are depending on you for copious quantities of pictures!)

all i am going to say

Do not expect much of a post from me about the shooting at the school in Newtown, CT last Friday; I, for one, do not believe in using the blood of victims as a fuel to further my political goals, unlike your average "gun control" fetishist. My thoughts and prayers are unquestionably with the families of those killed in this horrific crime, though, and if you do want something to read, you should read this.

I will say this much: "gun control" failed those children. Connecticut has an "assault weapon" ban. It did not work. Schools are "gun-free zones". That magical forcefield did not work. It is illegal to carry a handgun in Connecticut in public without a license. That did not stop the murderer. The teachers and principal of the elementary school were disarmed by the force of law. Even though at least one of them tried to resist, he lacked the tools to do so effectively.

And yet, despite the abject and complete failure of "gun control", the answer is… more "gun control"? How does that even begin to make sense?

More to the point, how does it make sense to punish millions of law-abiding American citizens because one person chose to become a criminal? I am not responsible for other people’s actions. I am not accountable for other people’s actions. As such, I refuse to be punished for those actions. At least the asshole murderer (who shall remain nameless on this site, for reasons well-documented here) took care of his own punishment for us.

And one final comment: "gun control" remains racist, even to this day. Every month, Chicago sees more firearm-related fatalities than transpired in Newtown on Friday, with the overwhelming majority of the victims being of darker skin tones. "Gun control" extremists never seem to care about those people, though (probably because such caring would be something of a tacit admission that the draconian "gun control" in Chicago is not working out so well for the city). Likewise, we will probably never know how many thousands of Mexicans, and possibly Americans, were killed with firearms the federal government smuggled across the border into Mexico as part of Operation Fast and Furious. Unfortunately, anti-rights cultists do not seem to care about brown victims.

But give those blood-dancing, victim-exploiting vampires a school full of lily-white children murdered by someone using a firearm, and all of a sudden, it is "GAME ON!" (Yes, there were minorities represented amongst the Sandy Hook shooting victims, but there were also whites shot in Chicago; the point stands.) I do not think I can adequately describe my contempt for such people.

In the end, I hate that these children were murdered, but I also hate that people like Dawn Hochsprung, the principal of Sandy Hook Elementary School who attempted to stop the murderer bare-handed, were prohibited from employing tools that have a recorded history of stopping spree- and mass-shooters. "Gun free zones" demonstrably do not work, and only create an environment where mass-murderers know they will not encounter any kind of armed, effective resistance. How about we give up on a failed program and try something else?

this is what a gun fetishist looks like

"Gun control" extremists get terribly upset when I accurately refer to them as anti-rights cultists, but I have made my case for that phrase, and, impressively, no one has found fault with my logic, not even the cultists themselves.

However, those poor, misunderstood, persecuted, downtrodden, and otherwise marginalized cultists get even more terribly upset when I accurately refer to them as "fetishists"; unfortunately for them, that shoe not only fits, it appears it was custom-made for them, and I have found an example so perfect it might as well have been delivered on the wings of angels.

First, however, what does "fetishist" mean? The root word, "fetish", has been somewhat muddled over the years by folks who really mean "sexual fetish", but drop the modifier out of laziness; the original term meant, "something, especially an inanimate object, that is revered or worshiped because it is believed to have magical powers or be animated by a spirit" or "An inanimate object worshiped for its supposed magical powers or because it is considered to be inhabited by a spirit"* or "an object believed to have supernatural powers, or in particular, a man-made object that has power over others". Thus, fetishists are those who believe certain inanimate objects are worthy of worship – or even fear – because they possess certain magical or supernatural powers, or, as the last link says, "fetishism is the emic attribution of inherent value or powers to an object".

Stupidly Expensive Ring from Fonderie 47With those definitions expressed and fresh in your mind, I give you Fonderie 47, fabricators of obscenely expensive jewelry like the ring to the left, which "starts" at $16,000. I do not think any of my readers, or I, will be buying from them any time soon.

So how did this company catch my eye? Their name might clue you in – supposedly every product in their collections is fabricated using repurposed materials from demilled AK-47s. Obviously this does not include the diamonds, gold, platinum, and other pretty-fying materials, but that is the claim. Better (if that is the right word) yet, funds from each sale are diverted to destroy assault rifles in Africa.

And right about then, this otherwise ugly art factory fell off the rails straight into Crazy Town. What follows is a fisking of their Vision and Transformation statements, and I swear I am making none of this up; you know me, and you know I probably could not emulate this level of derangement even if I wanted to.

We envision an Africa free from the fear of assault rifles. Today some twenty million assault rifles plague Africa – remnants of various conquests, conflicts, and failed strategies. They are responsible for countless deaths every year, enable and exacerbate violence against women and children, cause misallocation of resources and prevent economic growth.

The dearth of global and local leadership to address the presence and use of assault rifles must be remedied.

Oh, where to begin? I suppose we can start with the phrase "assault rifle" – in this particular case, that may a strictly accurate use of the phrase, in that some/most of the AK47s recovered in Africa are unquestionably the "fully-automatic" varieties. That may be the only aspect of this entire sad charade that may be to the credit of the folks at Fonderie 47, but we might as well mention it.

Now, it is good to have goals in life, but it is generally better to have realistic ones. Given the size of Africa, given the scope of its "borders", both as a continent and as the individual nations inside of it, and given the sheer number of firearms contained not only within that continent, but also the entire world, even remotely believing that it is possible to remove all assault rifles from the continent is… well, absurd. Furthermore, a lack of fear about an inanimate object is all well and good… but what about the fear of the people who use that object? Assault rifles do not get up on their own and start mowing down innocents; someone has to use them. Removing assault rifles, even if it were possible, does absolutely nothing about those murderous thugs.

How does an inanimate object "plague" anything? Plagues are, by their very nature, something that does something – one can be plagued by endless questions, or by an actual, honest-to-God plague. Firearms just kind of… lay there.

"They are responsible for…" Oh for the love of… How on God’s Green And Fluffy Earth can a firearm – an inanimate hunk of metal – be "responsible" for a damned thing? You might as well say rocks are "responsible" for Abel’s death. Oh, what is that? The rock was wielded by Cain? Well no gos-se, Sherlock, and firearms are wielded by a living, breathing human being as well, and it is that person who is responsible for the deaths they cause, not the tool they just happened to be using.

Oh, and let us talk about deaths for a moment… People my age and older will probably remember the Rwandan Genocide that took place over the course of around three months back in 1994, with a total death count of between 500,000 and 1,000,000 souls. Do you know what tool the Hutus favored the most when slaughtering the Tutsis? A machete. They were cheaper than firearms, did not require ammunition, and did not even need to be kept up in any significant way. A significant number were imported, but even I could manage to mass produce something approximating a "machete" out of sheet metal and a basic set of tools.

And yet you will see no mention of the folks at Fonderie 47 doing a damned thing about machetes, because those are not the flashy, big-ticket items like "assault rifles" are…

I will give them "enable" – all tools enable something to be done, that is kind of their point – but how can a firearm "cause" anything? Again, these self-righteous artistes completely and intentionally fail at root-cause analyses, instead taking the easy way out by blaming the tool violent predators choose to use rather than the predators themselves. On the one hand, you can hardly blame them – it is hard to do anything about violent predators without actually confronting those thugs, and who would want to do that? On the other hand, claiming to have accomplished anything while having done nothing about those self-same thugs is a self-deluding lie if there ever were one.

I just love the whole "misallocation of resources"… why, that makes it almost sound like someone lost a sheep or two, rather than roving, armed bands of violent, human-shaped predators murdered whomever they needed to in order to steal whatever they wanted. One has to marvel at how… sanitary this whole site is; we would not want to offend our rich customers with the cold hard truths of reality, would we?

As for the last sentence, I am just sure those roving bands of murderers will be eager to respond to "leadership"… Absolutely sure.

Our resolve began when we learned firsthand about the devastating effects of assault rifles in Africa. Cheap, abundant AK47s threaten not only lives, but undermine potential in all facets of development.

We decided to create something compelling and substantial in response – to change what people believed to be possible. Our belief has become Fonderie 47, a company dedicated to providing powerful means toward a stable and prosperous Africa free from the fear of assault rifles.

PETER THUM and JOHN ZAPOLSKI

Starting to notice a trend? The guns are "responsible", the guns are causing "devastating effects", the guns "threaten… lives", the guns, the guns, the guns… Never a single, solitary, remote whisper of a nod towards the people who are behind those firearms, pulling their triggers, murdering innocents.

Nope, all of these assault rifles are obviously operating on their own recognizance, under their own power… Unfortunately, this is just the tip of the fetishism iceberg.

We seek to inspire a new vision of what beauty and legacy can be and thereby to generate global interest and action in assault weapon removal and destruction in conflict and post conflict zones.

So, wait a second… you want to remove one of the most-effective means of self-defense from a "conflict zone"? You want to intentionally leave potential and future victims defenseless in the face of predatory monsters who will still exist, and still be quite keen on murdering, whether or not there are assault rifles handy or not? Oh, and I am sure those bloody-handed bastards will be willing to hand over their assault rifles for "removal and destruction".

Good Lord.

We fund the removal and destruction of AK47s and other assault rifles from conflict zones, as well as programs to support young people to build prosperity in conflict zones – from child soldiers to exceptional youth leaders in business, civic and academic pursuits.

To date, we have funded the destruction of more than 20,000 assault rifles in Africa.

Great. How many of the mass-murderers wielding them have you put in prison?

Oh, what is that? You are only concerned about the tools, and not the people holding them? Again with that bright, vibrant undercurrent of fetishism… As if the removal of a tool can change the hearts of murderous men.

We aim to empower a generation of young African leaders – people for whom this mission is a common sense imperative – to help themselves, and others, to build prosperity.

So you seek to "empower" people… by stripping them of the power of defending themselves, their families, their friends, and their villages? I cannot say as though I will ever comprehend that short-sighted idiocy.

The Origin – The AK47 (Avtomat Kaliashnikova) type assault rifle serves as the origin for all Fonderie 47 pieces.

Well, at least they can get that much right – the guns they are slicing and dicing probably are not original AK47s, but they are of the same family. It is peculiar that we stumble across such a fairly well-educated-about-the-facts "gun control" extremist, but I guess that is what makes their rank fetishism all the worse.

Shockingly, the image they chose to pair with this particular text actually shows someone properly indexing their finger along the frame of the AK in question; I can only assume it was an unintentional coincidence.

A Journey Beings – The universal symbol of conflict embarks on its transformation; enveloped in fire.

Hookay then. I guess "art" requires touchy-feely gos-se like that, but then the wheels finally come off the train…

Forging a New Material – As the fire cleanses the metal of its past, our essential element emerges.

Do what? The metal has a "past" of being part of a firearm – that is not going to change simply because you melt it down and reform it into something else. Hell, part of your business model relies on that metal having come from the firearms in question; if you "cleanse the metal of its past", that kind of destroys the whole "hey, look this metal came from an AK47" notion, does it not?

However we are looking at this rationally; as soon as you remove that limitation and consider this statement from the perspective of a religion, it all suddenly makes sense. Why? Consider Christianity, for a moment – when it comes to disposing worn out Bibles, relics, and even the leftover wafers of Communion (if you are not holding them until next week), the tradition is "burn then bury". Again, why? The belief, and I do want to stress that word, is that the fire destroys any blessing or holiness the item might otherwise carry, so it is no longer profane to dispose of it, and if someone were to come across it and do something… untoward… with it, it would not be as bad. Likewise, if you go back to older religions (and, for that matter, Christianity during the darker stretches of its history), the notion of a "cleansing fire" to remove the evil from an are or object is about as prevalent as water.

But these are all religious beliefs, and all center around the notion that the object in question has "supposed magical powers" or "has power over others".

Oh.

Wait.

Where have I read those words before?

In short, the fetishists at Fonderie 47 are treating the AK47 family of rifles as religious totems, and they admit as much on their very webpage.

Sure, this is just a question of what Peter Thum and John Zapolski themselves believe, right? Well, consider what else they have said before this; consider how they incessantly blame the firearm for all the ills committed with the assistance of those tools, rather than the people who are wielding them; consider how they seem to believe that firearms have power imbued in them, rather than providing utility to their users; consider how they believe the destruction of a tool will change the evil that unquestionably lurks in all men but is expressed by a few.

Now, tell me those beliefs of Peter and John differ from the beliefs of your average anti-rights cultist. I dare you. Tell me that treating firearms like deodands by destroying "crime guns" is not just another form of fetishism, and a conveniently authoritarian one at that. Tell me that you have never had an anti-rights cultist take the position that if all firearms were to magically be teleported off the planet, the world would be returned to peace and happiness and no one would ever be killed.

In the end, "gun control" is nothing more than a fetishistic cult, and the good folks at Fonderie 47 provide a perfect example as to why.

Emergent Potential – Imbued with energy, our metal holds new promise.

Imbued? Seriously? We just keep treating firearms – and now metal in general, for that matter – as magical items capable of somehow carrying memories, energy, and Lord knows what else between their molecules. Romantic, perhaps, but definitely creepy.

Restored Power – Heat solidifies this potential and seals its renewal.

This is me, too damned flabbergasted at the continued deification of raw materials and inanimate objects to continue making fun of this idiocy; how do you further ridicule something this ridiculous?

A Symbol of Prosperity – Our material serves as a symbol of new prosperity, ready to become an inspiration in the hands of leading artisans.

I do not know… I would say that being able to legally own a legitimate, fully-automatic AK47, much less feed the bloody thing, is a surefire "symbol of prosperity", new or otherwise.

Casting a New Future Through Art – Expert craftsmen possessed of the highest caliber of mastery recast the future.

I guess closing out on a pretentious, presumptuous note like that is required when you are selling little lumps of metal that have price tags in excess of a significant number of automobiles.

Let us be honest here a moment – I am all for any program that will legitimately bring peace and prosperity to Africa, much less any other nation or area on the globe. However, cutting up AK47s and turning them into overpriced paperweights is not going to do either. The violent people who wielded those AKs and killed those innocents are still there, they are still violent, and they will still kill people; the only thing Fonderie 47 and their customers are changing is how those innocents are going to die.

The fact that Fonderie feels smug about this really tells you everything you need to know about them.

(* – Amusing side note: "fetish" can also mean "A course of action to which one has an excessive and irrational commitment". Perhaps instead of "gun control" extremists, I should be referring to them as "gun control" fetishists? *giggle*)

(Ring picture borrowed from Fonderie 47.)

(Found by way of Gizmodo.)

shining the light on the cockroaches

It has come to my attention that various obsessive anti-rights cultists are maliciously and intentionally misrepresenting something I said in one of my previous posts; this, in and of itself, does not surprise me, but I thought I would take a moment to explain the thought fully to my audience, such that they can grasp the level of my disgust, and the depravity of those taking offense to what I said. 

The quote which is causing so much consternation amongst the ranks of “gun control” extremists is as follows: 

(* – One interesting side-effect from not making this distinction is that by holding their candle-light vigils for “victims of ‘gun violence’”, the Brady Campaign and their sycophants are, by definition, memorializing those murderers, rapists, thieves, muggers, robbers, home-invaders, and other scumbags who were shot down in self-defense by their intended victims, or by the police in the execution of their duties. As always, “gun control” extremists are aiding, abetting, and sympathizing with criminals. Disgusting.)

Earlier in the post, I drew the distinction between “violent but predatory” and “violent but protective”, but, predictably enough, it would appear as though the foaming-at-the-mouth anti-rights cultists could not be bothered to read that section of my post, or the page I linked so. 

So let us start from the top. 

bradycampaigngunviolencecriminalsAs you can see at the bottom of the image to the right, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence Ownership indicates that 31,593 people were killed by people using firearms in 2008.  That is a remarkably specific number, and, conveniently enough, that matches perfectly against the numbers provided by the WISQARS Fatal Injury Data report for 2008 (I would link to it directly, but they do not allow me to, and I trust that my readership is competent enough to operate a simple search engine). 

Unsurprisingly, however, the Brady Campaign does not go into the specifics of those deaths; we will do so here.  Those deaths include people of all ages, both genders, all races, all states, and all ethnicities.  Additionally, they include all deaths due to all intents:  unintentional (accidents or negligence), suicide, undetermined intents, homicide, and, most importantly, legal intervention.  What does “legal intervention” mean to WISQARS?  Well, let us quote them

Legal Intervention – injuries inflicted by the police or other law-enforcing agents, including military on duty, in the course of arresting or attempting to arrest lawbreakers, suppressing disturbances, maintaining order, and other legal actions. Excludes injuries caused by civil insurrections.

(Emphasis added.) 

WISQARS indicates that, in 2008, 326 died due to “legal intervention”. 

Interestingly, WISQARS does not count “self-defense” amongst “legal intervention”, nor does it break it out in any other, separate category, and, in fact, it explains: “Justifiable homicide is not identified in WISQARS.”  As such, I assume “justifiable homicides” are lumped into “homicides” in general, which only goes to increase the above number. 

However, the Brady Campaign did not subtract those 326+ from their total “gun violence” victims number.  The Brady Campaign does not recognize, or even admit to, the distinction between “predatory” violence and “protective” violence. 

As such, by the arbitrary definition put forward by the Brady Campaign themselves, when they “host[ed] a nationwide candlelight vigil to honor victims of gun violence”, they were “honoring” those lawbreakers shot and killed by police while exercising their duties and those criminals justifiably shot and killed in self-defense.  They were “honoring” those “murderers, rapists, thieves, muggers, robbers, home-invaders, and other scumbags” I mention above. 

And they knew they were doing it – after all, they established the meaning of the concept of “gun violence” so conveniently on their webpage. 

I wonder if that is why those hysterical (in both meanings of that word) anti-rights cultists are taking such vociferous exception to my pointing out this elementary chain of logic – they know they idiotically painted themselves into the corner, and they just hate that someone noticed. 

In any case, yes, I do find it disgusting that an organization – any organization – is “honoring” criminals justifiably killed in self-defense or other legal actions, and I am damned near astonished that some “gun control” extremists are so shamelessly immoral as to take offense at that simple observation.  I am not the one “honoring” lawless criminals shot down because they were violently preying on innocent, law-abiding citizens; if you need someone to hate over that, look in your own damned mirror

candles… with fire support

Over the course of today, various subchapters (but not all of them, pointedly enough) of the main “gun control” extremist organizations here in America will be gathering around the country to light candles in order to… do something.  By some accounts, the candlelight vigil is in memory of those murdered in the Tucson shooting a year ago.  Others say that they are gathering and increasing their carbon footprints in order to “honor the victims of ‘gun violence’”.  And, finally, still others are saying that this movement will somehow manage to “prevent” “gun violence”.

Honestly, I have no problems with people remembering their dead however they see fit, so long as that remembrance does not harm anyone else and is within the bounds of the law, and if these people think their fallen would want them standing around holding candles, then more power to them.  But let us examine that last claim by the extremists.

How, exactly, does standing around holding candles stop “gun violence”?  Ignore, for a second, the completely meaningless nature of “gun violence” (just like the completely meaningless nature of “gun deaths”), and likewise ignore the inherent dangers of having such a tunnel-vision view on the world.  Just answer me this: how is a group of people – no matter how large and no matter how distributed across the country – standing around holding candles going to stop a murderer from using a firearm to kill someone in a dark alley?  How is it going to stop a rapist from using a firearm to threaten a woman into submission?  How is it going to stop a robber from “whipping it out” to encourage his prey to hand over their wallets?

Simply put, it is not.  Worse, the belief that standing around holding a candle will convince these bloodthirsty thugs to give up their violent ways is much akin to the ancient celebrations around bonfires during the Winter Solstice, with the associated belief that the revelers were “driving back the darkness”.  In other words, this “candle light vigil” being organized by the Brady to Prevent Gun Violence Ownership is nothing more than further substantiation that “gun control” is a cult and those who support it are cultists.

As an engineer and a rational, adult human being, I am exclusively concerned with what works, and history has shown us, time and time again, that “gun control” simply does not work – it does not achieve any of its stated goals, and standing around holding a candle will not achieve the goal of reducing “gun violence”.  So what does stop all violence?

Well, even that is a misstatement of what should be your goals; you see, there is a difference between “violent but predatory” and “violent but protective”*.  The first unquestionably needs to stop, but, realistically, it is only through the second that it will be achieved:

One bleeding-heart type asked me in a recent interview if I did not agree that ‘violence begets violence.’ I told him that it is my earnest endeavor to see that it does. I would like very much to ensure—and in some cases I have—that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy.

Speaking more generally, what is the one thing that stops consistently, verifiably, and historically stops murderers, rapists, robbers, and other thugs cold?  A person with a gun.  These days, more often than not, that “person with a gun” is also wearing a badge and a uniform, but as Tam recently said, “If you don’t have your own pistol, you may have to wait the rest of your life for the police to bring theirs.”  Why should we law-abiding American citizens be forced to wait up to 21 minutes (and beyond) for the police to respond to our situation, when our very lives are on the line, and when we know exactly what could keep us alive?

We should not.  So, courtesy of an outstanding idea by the inimitable Weer’d Beard, I am going to take a few moments today to show you what can stop predatory violence being levied against my family or myself, unlike some random collection of paraffin and oils.

Offhand, I would guess somewhere around 2500 ft-lbs of energy being applied to a murderer’s thoracic cavities would do wonders for stopping him from committing any form of predatory violence against me and mine, and thanks to Buffalo Bore Ammunition and Smith and Wesson, that number is fairly easy to achieve:

GunViolenceCandle1

Additionally, as you can see, I am very much a modern tool-using monkey in that instead of relying on the weak, inconsistent, and easily-extinguished light from a paltry exothermic reaction, my illumination – a necessary aspect of “identifying my target” is courtesy of a Novatac Storm LED flashlight, putting out somewhere around 120 lumens of crystal clear white light.  To say there is no competition between those light sources would be putting it very mildly.

But that is just what I use when I am out and about on the town…  If we are closer to home, we all know that pistols are only used to get to your rifles, or, in my case, a shotgun, loaded up with eight rounds of reduced-recoil #00 buckshot and four rounds of reduced recoil slugs, complete with a recoil reducing stock such that my wife can comfortably employ it as well:

GunViolenceCandle2

This time, our effective, efficient illumination comes courtesy of an original Surefire 6PD flashlight, which, unlike its low-tech brethren also in the picture, actually stands a fair chance of momentarily blinding those it is pointed at with its directed 120 lumens of light.

But what if we do not want to blind ourselves?  Well, that is where the attached flip-up red filter comes in:

GunViolenceCandle3

You see, my dear anti-rights cultists, I am only concerned with what works, and courtesy of modern technology, there are so many demonstrably-better methods for stopping predatory violence against me and mine that something as paltry and pathetic as a candle blowing in the wind simply does not make the cut.  Now, if you all want to stand around and remember the loved ones you have lost, that is your call, and you are more than welcome to do as your heart desires so long as it is not hurting anyone else.  But the very second you imply that doing so will somehow affect “gun violence” on a national scale, you are lying, and, worse, you are using the memories of those lost loved ones to perpetrate and give weight to those lies, and that is a pretty damned reprehensible thing indeed.

On the other hand, my peacefully and lawfully owning and carrying firearms affects no one, damages no one, misleads no one, and dishonors no one’s memories, so why is it that you so fervently wish to leave me disarmed and defenseless against a plethora of people who do mean to do harm to my family and myself?  Whose side are you on, exactly?

Thankfully, I know whose side these good folks are on, as they throw their support in behind the only thing we know can stop most kinds of predatory violence against law-abiding citizens, not just self-serving narrowings of the playing field like “gun violence” or other statistics-abusing concepts.  So go take a look at the celebrations of self-defense here at Weer’d’s where he is collecting pictures from all over the world, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here, with more to be added as the day progresses. 

(* – One interesting side-effect from not making this distinction is that by holding their candle-light vigils for “victims of ‘gun violence’”, the Brady Campaign and their sycophants are, by definition, memorializing those murderers, rapists, thieves, muggers, robbers, home-invaders, and other scumbags who were shot down in self-defense by their intended victims, or by the police in the execution of their duties.  As always, “gun control” extremists are aiding, abetting, and sympathizing with criminals.  Disgusting.  (For further clarification on this notion, please see here.))

there exists evil in this world

There is no way around it – the bombing and mass shooting in Norway this past Friday were horrific events indeed; however, like all such events, it also offers a unique perspective on a thankfully rare and irregular event… a perspective that is made all the more valuable by that rarity. And given how unusual first-hand information on situations like these is, we would be fools not to try to learn something from this one. Please note that nothing I am writing below is in any way an attack on the survivors or Norway – I try my best not to armchair-quarterback events, and their country is their concern – but rather these items are presented as things we, as American citizens, should be mindful of in the future.

1. You are responsible for your own security. It took somewhere between 60 and 90 minutes for police to get to the island and apprehend the shooter, and in that time, 68 people were murdered. In a bizarre stroke of timing, news helicopters got to the scene before the police did.

During that time, people were entirely on their own as to their safety. There was some type of guard on the island, but he was one of the first casualties once the murderer started shooting, and after that, the words "fish in a barrel" come to mind when thinking about the terrain, environment, and situation. What is the police response time in your area? Can you keep you and yours alive in the intervening time? Given a similar situation with a non-zero number of the potential victims being lawfully armed and trained in self-defense, would it have changed the outcome any?

2. Criminals do not play fair. The shooter apparently disguised himself as a police officer, not only to convince a ferry pilot to take him over to the island, but also to lull his victims into a false sense of security – as others have said, cultures around the world have gotten out of the habit of questioning uniformed "authorities" just due to the negative repercussions that can sometimes result from that action. However, even here in America, criminals are noticing that tendency and exploiting it to their benefit. Does that mean you should start regarding all police officers as potential criminals-in-disguise? No moreso than any other person on the street, but that alone is an increase in situational awareness for most people.

3. Armed resistance stopped the mass shooter:

[Redacted] surrenders without a fight with police after shooting dead at least 86 people. Police said their arrival prevented further killings on the island, where hundreds of people were staying.

"We arrive with a very competent group that surrounds the perpetrator who then chooses to hand himself over to the police. He had at that point used two weapons and had been, and was still, in possession of a substantial amount of ammunition. Thus, the police’s response has hindered further killing on the island."

You will find that this is a consistent, repeated theme throughout the history of spree shooters – when faced with the prospect of concerted resistance, especially when that resistance is armed, the murderers have a marked tendency to stop shooting people, either through shooting themselves, surrendering, or being brought down by that resistance. Firearms in the hands of those fighting back greatly increases their efficacy and chances of success ( unarmed people have brought down shooters in the past, though), so does it not make sense to allow law-abiding citizens the chance to be their own "first-responders", so to speak? Why should they be forced to wait until the police arrives?

You are not dead until you are dead, and while I certainly would not encourage anyone to engage an active spree shooter, it is one of the historically-proven methods for ending his murders.

4. Running away will not necessarily save you. In this particular case, the murderer planned ahead – he chose a confined, small area from which people could not easily escape to perpetrate his mass shooting. Thankfully, some people were able to stay one step ahead of the murderer, and even more thankfully, some people stepped into the role of "hero" without even thinking about it, but neither is a guarantee. If you are in shape, have a previous knowledge of your surrounding terrain, are far enough from the shooting, or are just wily enough, running away may work out for you. If you cannot meet those hurdles, or if you are just caught flat-footed, it would behoove you to have contingency plans already worked out in your head (see above).

5. There exists evil in this world. As the trite saying goes, the first step to fixing a problem is acknowledging you have it to begin with, and it is very safe to say that this world of ours has a significant problem with evil existing throughout its populace, whether we are talking at the smaller scale of some twisted kid torturing the neighbor’s pets or some deranged whackjob deciding that murdering dozens of innocent children will "save" Europe from some nebulous threat.

Alright, so how do we fix this evil? Well, here is a hint: more legislation is not the answer. To be certain, crimes against people (murder, assault, battery, rape, robbery, burglary, etc.) should be made illegal and punished to the furthest extent possible, but "victimless" crimes (owning a firearm with a barrel over X inches in diameter, growing a specific plant, selling orchids without a license, etc.) are pointless, ineffective, almost impossible to enforce, and only serve to generate a false sense of security and overly encumber an already strained legal system.

Instead, look to the article linked at the beginning of this bullet point:

After massacres and disasters, governments ask themselves, "What laws can we pass so that this is less likely to happen again?" It’s a perilous question. Carnage often leads to irrational policy. But attempts at an answer are inevitable. More often than not, mine is, "It’s unwise to rely only on the government." It’s an impulse that is often mocked when cautious types are seen buying emergency supplies, or organizing disaster drills, or scoping out unattended bags at the train station, or applying for a concealed weapons permit and gun safety classes. But it beats trying to say safer by launching foreign wars and infringing on civil liberties. And I suspect the mockery is often a defense mechanism against a hard truth: that there is no entity that can give us the degree of safety we imagined having; that re-burdening ourselves is sadly necessary.

… Which rather brings us back to the beginning of this list, with you being responsible for your own security, regardless of whatever government or entity you live under.

Again, these are all take-aways for America and its people, since the right to self-defense is constantly growing in the public eye, and average citizens are comfortable with the notion of not having to rely on the government for their own security. Norway, however, is an entirely different country, with an entirely different culture, and they will unquestionably find a different solution to their problem. I wish them the best with it, but that country’s policy of "’self-defense’ is an insufficient reason for firearm ownership" pretty firmly lumps it in the "nice place to visit, but would never live there" category.

For the Americans amongst my readers, however, if you carry a firearm, actually carry it. and if you do not, be prepared to ensure your security through other means – for whatever reason, the crazies are coming out of the woodwork more and more recently, and it falls to us – the people who they invariably seem to attack – to defend ourselves from them… no one else.

(Note: The Norway shooter’s name will not be published on this site, in accordance with its policy not to give publicity to murderous scumbags.)