Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Protesters and Guns

Ya'll know I don't usually get political here. I just don't want to deal with the haters and the arguments and the bull.

But this, this is really starting to tweak me off.

Oh. My. God. People are openly carrying firearms, in public, in a perfectly legal and (in my opinion) entirely wise manner! And, *gasp* some of them are the dreaded Evil Black Rifles!

MSNBC (who I will not link to, if you want the vid you can find it on their site, I'm sure, or see a vid of someone pointing out the obvious fallacy of the network's reporting over at Tam's blog, if you haven't seen it already) claims that the gun-toting masses at these protests are members of hate groups.

Wha? Since when does carrying a weapon, concealed or otherwise, make you a member of a hate group? Where I come from every other pickup in the high school parking lot has a gun rack in the back window. Whether the student who owns a particular vehicle leaves their rifle or shotgun displayed or tucks it behind the seat during school is more a matter of preference than any law or policy.

Where I come from, if you do anything outside of city limits, and some things within city limits, having, at the very least, a twenty two rifle in your vehicle is not only a wise choice but pretty much the standard. Personal protection does not only mean against two-legged critters. We've got enough of the four legged kind around, and enough instances of rabies infection, in spite of DOW's attempts to keep the virus under control, that you never know when you might come across a skunk or coon that will act against it's nature and attack you. Putting those animals down before they bite a person or someone's beloved pet is considered a public service. If someone claims they saw a possibly rabies infected animal and didn't shoot it, the typical response is "why not?!?"

That's not even considering snakes, coyotes, cougars, bears, bobcats, badgers, or in the canyons, particularly belligerent Barbary sheep.

Or having to put an animal down because one of the aforementioned critters got ahold of it, or it's too sick to save, or it broke a leg, or, or, or.

There are thousands of circumstances in which it is not only wise, but responsible and important to carry a firearm here, without even considering the foibles of H. Sapiens.

Add in the sheer numbers of people and charged atmosphere of a large "Town Hall" meeting on a controversial subject, with a protest outside?

You're damn skippy I'd be armed! And in my opinion, the safest way to carry at one of those things, would be openly.

If someone does want to start something, are they more likely to do it among a group of apparently unarmed people (whether some of those people are carrying concealed or not) or in the middle of a crowd liberally sprinkled with obvious weapons? To me, a critter would have to be a few splinters short of the brain power of a wooden post to start something in the middle of that second crowd.

I carry a weapon. Lately, I've been doing a bit of open carry, to show off the gorgeous new grips that I got as an early birthday present.

Am I a member of a hate group? Does wanting to be able to assure my own safety make me a bad person? I'm fully aware of the response times of police officers under the best of circumstances. I'm not denigrating law enforcement, but even they are constrained by the laws of physics, and unless your city has a 1:1 citizen to officer ratio, it's going to take them a few minutes to ride to the rescue under the most favorable circumstances. Those few minutes can mean the difference between a little shook up and seriously injured, violated, or dead.

If I can protect myself for those few minutes in whatever way is available to me, I count that as a good thing. Being a practical type, I like knowing that even if a big hairy muscular man decides to whip my skinny little butt, I have ways available to me that will level the playing field. I cannot go punch for punch with a Mike Tyson type and I will not attempt it.

As for the White House issuing a statement that these people were acting within the law, and it is ok???

Well No Shit Sherlock!

We should not need a statement written up by some White House flunky to tell us that these people were acting legally and nobody got hurt. Was anyone shot? Were there any negligent discharges of these firearms during the protests? Did any of these guns actually clear leather (or kydex, or come off of the shoulder upon which they were slung) during the protests?

I haven't seen it, and you can bet your best heifer that if someone had displayed their weapon in anything but a carrying position the Medi-ugh would have been all over it.

So guess what, all you screaming memes? Those of us who believe in the Constitution and everything it stands for, who believe in the responsibility and the right to help ensure our own safety, those of us who are proud to be citizens because of the rights and freedoms that our forefathers fought for, bleed and died to ensure, are going to keep carrying our weapons, and exercising our Second Amendment rights right along with our First Amendment rights.

And the more you scream and piss and moan, the more likely it is that more of us will carry openly.

Does anyone else just want to tell all of these people to grow a set and get over it, or is it just me?