Saturday, March 24, 2018

Commentary – “Stop the Violence” . . . “March for our Lives” . . . What?????

A young fellow by the name of David Hogg has grabbed center stage after the vile act of evil that left 14 students and 3 teachers dead in Florida in February of this year.  His primary target is the NRA . . . an organization who has never had an NRA member as the primary shooter in a mass shooting (other than to stop it), never had a member involved in a school shooting, whose 125,000 instructors annually train 1 MILLION Americans in the safe use of their firearms. 

Perhaps a few words from the “Student Warrior Unleashed”.  A word of caution, this video is NOT safe to play at work or in school, it is NOT “child safe”.  The language is profane in the extreme.  This . . . this is the spokesman for this new movement to Stop the Violence and March for our lives.

David Hogg . . . voice of the movement

His parents must be so proud.  His school must be so proud.  Honestly, I think the young fellow has simply lost his cookies and could use some professional help.  It might be residual PTSD, or even showmanship.  Who knows.  A certain lack of education – or understanding of his education in history shows as well.  Sorry David, you do not live in a Democracy.  Perhaps a bit more time on the books and less in front of the camera would help.

So where are these young folks headed?  Let’s talk a bit about the initial premise of the walkout – #StopTheViolence.  What, exactly, does that mean?  Should we stop killing each other as a society?  Who can argue against that?  There are probably tens of thousands of laws on the books – one going all the way back to 1,300 BC that says something like “Thou Shalt Not Kill!”  I am in full agreement, as is virtually everyone else, with the exception of that person who is intent on killing . . . and evil seldom listens to any voice but its own.

Perhaps we should attempt to put our student’s mind at ease and clarify that individuals shouldn’t kill students while in school and, perhaps we should emphasize that by making schools “Gun Free Zones”.  Of course, I’m being facetious because the majority of school zones are already “Gun Free Zones” as was the school in Florida.  The result?  The only person with a gun, on school property in this type of shooting is that person who is intent on killing . . . and evil seldom listens to any voice but its own.

Perhaps we can simply lay blame for the killings at someone’s doorstep – say the NRA?  Honestly, here I need to raise my voice in objection because, as the saying goes, “I Am The NRA”.  In fact I am a NRA Trainer for Pistols, Rifles, Shotguns, Personal Protection in the Home, Personal Protection Outside of the Home, Range Safety Officers and as a NRA Training Counselor I can also train new NRA Instructors.  I know for a fact that safe handling of a firearms is my primary concern.  The defense of the student, their family and those in their charge is my next primary mission.  To say that good training and the teaching of safe gun handling is the cause of an evil use of a firearm is vile in and of itself.

Who could have affected the outcome of the Florida School shooting?  Honestly, there were many people.  Let’s start with the Health and Human Services department that were well aware that the shooter was mentally unstable and violent.  They, in conjunction with the BCSO were involved with over 18 individual visits to the shooter’s home.  They could have intervened – and in fact had made the decision to intervene to have him committed against his will.  They did nothing.

The FBI could have done something.  On at least two separate occasions they were notified that the shooter had made direct threats against the school.  They did nothing.

Perhaps a law that allows law enforcement to take guns from mentally ill people that appear to be a danger to themselves and others?  Florida already has such a law on the books, yet the shooter was never reported by either HHS or the BCSO.  In fact, nationwide the reporting of violent felons and mentally ill patients  to the FBI NICS is dismal.  If the person is NOT IN THE SYSTEM, they cannot be identified.

How about comprehensive background checks?  Closing the “gun show loophole”?  The only problem?  You can’t buy a gun without a background check.  Go to a gunstore to buy a gun – they will run a background check.  Go to a gun show and buy a gun – they will run a background check.  Order a gun online from a dealer – they will ship it to your local gun dealer (NOT YOU) and – they will run a background check.  Are there some exceptions – yes.  Sell a gun to a friend within state lines – the individual state will regulate whether you need to do that through a gun dealer or whether you can simply complete the sale yourself.  But . . . and this is a big butt . . . for background checks to be effective, the states must turn in the data.  Those with severe mental health issues must have their data entered.  No data, no chance of stopping the shooter.  In the Florida case, if the shooter had been committed, if that information had been entered, if those charged with protecting their community had done their job – those 17 would be alive today.  Period.

How about getting violent students out of the school?  The Obama Administration let it be known that if too many students of a certain color were removed from schools, their funding could be lost.  It should come as no surprise that in the Florida school the rate of students being reported for violence and removed suddenly dropped. 

Guns are always options of last resort.  And that includes use of deadly force by police officers and School Resource Officers.  But, should that day arrive – wouldn’t it be nice if the SRO acted to engage the shooter rather than exiting the building, establishing a perimeter and then holding other responding officers outside the building for 27 minutes? 

Bottom line, all the people the students expected to protect them, failed them.  The school administration, the SRO, the BCSO, HHS and the FBI failed to act on solid information.  Students and teachers died.  And the solution is to look to these same people to protect them going forward?  Really??

There is another culprit of course.  And the final target of this new movement – GUNS.  Yes, those black, evil chunks of polymer and steel that somehow magically come alive and seek out people to kill.  If only we could eliminate guns – ASSAULT WEAPONS specifically – all would be well.  Of course, you have not been able to purchase a true “Assault Weapon” – meaning a fully automatic firearm, since 1934.  But let’s just ignore that and stick with just taking them because then we will be safe and the killing will stop.  Mother Jones recently released a comprehensive account of all mass shootings from 1982 to 2018.  There have been 98 of them.  There have been 819 deaths.  The use of either an AR (ArmaLite Rifle) or AK (Kalashnikov Rifle) occurred only 15 times.  Let me say that one more time – ARs or AKs were only used is 15 of the 98 mass shootings since 1982 or only 15% of the time.  So, the obvious solution is to ban ARs and AKs.

Let’s broaden our view and look at the FBI data for 2016.  There were 15,070 murders in the US.  Of those 374 were committed by rifles – all types included.  This amounts to 2%.  So, the obvious solution is to ban ARs and AKs.  Twice as many deaths were committed with hands and feet, should we start chopping them off?  Five times as many deaths were caused by knives, shall we ban all knives?  (Don’t laugh, this is happening in the UK).

While the anti-civil rights crowd dance on the graves of those 17 who lost their lives in the Florida school shooting, make no mistake – their “final solution” is to deny me and all law-abiding citizens of our 2nd Amendment Right to keep and bear arms.   The blood of the children and teachers simply acting as grease for their wheels. 

Perhaps a brief look at history to see how that’s worked out when severe gun control legislation was enacted (year given that the law was passed). 

Germany, 1938,  All non-citizens were prohibited from owning and possessing firearms.  Jews were not citizens.

Soviet Union, 1929.  Stalin is estimated to have killed 20 million of his own citizens

Communist China, 1935 and 1957, estimates are that Mao killed between 40 and 80 million of his own citizens.

Cambodia, 1956,  Pol Pot killed 2 million of his own citizens

This, this right here is the purpose of the 2nd Amendment.  It gives the citizens of the state the ability to defend themselves against a state out of control.  Do we have examples of our state killing its own citizens because of guns? 

Wounded Knee, December 29, 1890.  The government killed between 150 and 300 Lakota people, most were women and children when they wouldn’t turn over their guns.

Waco, Texas  February – April 1993, Branch Davidians,  After a siege the building complex was raided by the ATF because of suspect weapons stock piling.  81 people were burned to death.

As recently as 2014 there was an armed standoff between the BLM and the Bundy family in a dispute over grazing rights that had been granted for over 20 years.  The standoff eventually resulted in the killing of a rancher, Robert Finicum and a resulting $5 Million-dollar wrongful death suit.  All charges against the family were dropped this year.

So where does this leave us?  I believe it leaves us with a number of uncomfortable truths.

Violence will never “stop”.  It is a part of human nature.  Wishing it to be gone does not banish it or violence would have disappeared long ago.

Evil exists.  And I mean real, honest to God, gut wrenching evil.  Try this link and realize this is in your country, not some 3rd world backwater.

The person you see in the mirror every morning is your “first responder”.  If you are living every day knowing that all you need to do is call 911 and you are saved – please, wake up before it’s too late.  Get some first aid training, take some defensive fighting classes, become responsible for yourself rather than trusting your safety to someone else.  I noticed that many states are enacting rules saying you can not buy a gun – any gun -  until age 21.  Think of the young woman with a stalker and a piece of paper that she expects to protect her from violence.  What could possibly go wrong.

Harden schools.  The NRA released their NRA School Shield Program early in 2013 after Sandyhook.  Make sure your school follows the tenants contained in it.  Make sure they have an armed SRO on duty every day.  Allow those teachers that follow state and local laws to acquire their individual carry permit to carry on school property if they so choose.  The more trained folks in a school that are armed, the higher the possibility to stop a school shooter.

Finally, one of our founders had a simple warning for us:

Benjamin Franklin once said: "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." 

I believe it is a thought we should all take to heart.

Some reference links:

March for our lives – “Fingers” and signs

Mass Shootings 1982 – 2018  (819 killed)

Article on local students during the walkout

Kellogg-Briand Pact was an agreement to outlaw war signed on August 27, 1928

Benjamin Franklin once said: "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." 


  1. This is the best article that I've read since this whole ordeal began.
    Thank you for expressing what many of us are thinking.

  2. Even more interesting, apparently Hogg wasn't even AT the school at the time. He stated he grabbed his camera and rode to the school...