Quote of the Day – Marcus Luttrell (2/10/2013)

Fear is a force that sharpens your senses.  Being afraid is a state of paralysis in which you can’t do anything.

I have found that the best way to get through tough times is to surround myself with positive people.  If you spend time around people who are weak or always feel sorry for themselves, it’s bound to rub off on you.  Always look forward, never back.

Marcus Luttrell – Service: A Navy SEAL at War, P208


[Yes that's more of a twofer, especially since there was another great quote in-between those two but I felt them fitting when paired.  Why?  Let me remind of you A Girl's post.

You, you who hate guns, you gave me nothing.

No hope.

No tools.

All that was offered me was a life of fear, of resentment, of bitterness, of dependance…

The gun community has offered me hope and strength, and courage.

They have taught me to have belief in myself.

They have asked nothing of me in return and, yet, I would give them my life.

I do really need to write up on my visit to Olympia a couple weeks ago because that second piece of advice was quite apparent.  The opposition only showed up with emotion and hysteria.  Quite honestly the first day was nothing more than a pity party, which was obvious as how they went about championing their bill.

Entertainingly after arguing for a similar bill in Oregon, Mark Kelly went shooting.  Because we all know how they support their ability to exercise the 2nd Amendment as being exempted parts of the political elite while they despise yours.

I believe this man here nails it quite well.

When you see someone arguing to take away your right to keep and bear arms and then go an do the exact thing they were arguing against, they're a hypocrite.  Mark Kelly borrowed someone's firearm and the bill he was arguing for in Washington would make that a felony.  He also went and attempted to buy an AR-15 after arguing for an AWB in Connecticut.

All the other side has is self loathing, pity, and hypocrisy.  See this most recent incident involving the New York SAFE Act.

He was a well-known face in the movement for the SAFE Act, the state law that made carrying a gun on school property a felony. He was also a familiar presence in the hallways of the city’s Harvey Austin Elementary School, where he worked in the after-school program and mentored students.

No one imagined that on Thursday he would show up at the school in possession of a gun, touching off an hours-long lockdown, search and ultimately his arrest on two felony charges.

Ferguson, 52, told WGRZ-TV that he frequently carries the gun, for which he has a permit, and did not realize he had it on him when he went to the school as part of the mentoring program.

Had it been any other person would the other side be so lenient? This is exactly the type of issue our side regularly brings up regarding these measures but we're told, "That's not the intent of the law."  Well intent or not, that's what the law says.  Book 'em Danno.  Don't like it, take your ill conceived, forced through without debate law off the books and come back and behave like an adult.  Until then you can suffer under the law you helped instituted and create.

Worth a note, a bunch of us are still working on fixing the problem but you deserve to be punished for what you did more than anyone.  -B]

Quote of the Day – Michael Z. Williamson (2/5/2014)

It may be time to start planting claymores instead of tulips.

Michael Z. Williamson – Facebook Comment

February 5th, 2014


[The catalyst was this event.  All I have to say is there is something very wrong in the system and they are not policing their own anymore. -B]

 

An Interesting Jury

Things are bad and they’re only getting worse.  Many run their lives from an apathetic point of view.  If it doesn’t directly affect me it isn’t my problem.  There is a problem with that though, it does affect you, it affects everyone.   It is an erosion of your personal liberty whether you want to currently exercise that choice or not.

It is time to start standing up.  It is time to force your voice to be heard.  Neither party cares about liberty or freedom.  They care about money and power.  They have been slowly turning up the heat so they can steal more money and more, it’s time to jump out of the pot.

I remind you of this great document.  It reminds of of not just our rights but also our responsibilities in such matters.  Are you OK with standing in front of that jury?

A Friend Comes Out… Again

First, you can find out in much the same way as many found out from Gay Cynic on Wednesday.

I initially found out the previous Friday.  So when I found out what was happening in Olympia Tuesday and Wednesday and I was advised my help would be appreciated I was more than happy to come along.  It was an opportunity to spend more time and chat with Ray.

Wednesday on the drive down he mentioned that he’d like to rip the emotional crutch out from under people who are abusing it down there.  He felt this was a fitting way and I had to agree.  It had his sense of humor all over it.  If you get handed the short straw, you might as well enjoy it.  As he put it to me afterward, “I’ve come out now three times in my life.  First that I was gay, then as a gun owner, now as a person fighting cancer.”

I couldn’t help but be in awe with the way he is approaching the problem.  It is merely a bump in the road and he’s already gone through and fought a lot worse.

GC has posted the details of the beginning of this journey.  My only request, more of a reminder, is if you call up/email to voice you’re support don’t focus on the topic.  Be an upper not a downer.  Remember he’s fielding lots of questions from a lot of people and if everyone calls up asking about it, well that’s all he’ll be able to think about.  You can ask but limit your time on the topic.

Ultimately though Ray’s going to go all Cave Johnson on this with even more epic results.

Here is what he had planned for his full testimony:

My name is Gay Cynic.  I was recently diagnosed with cancer with an initial prognosis of 6-12 months.  This gives me an unusual level of objectivity regarding I-594 as, barring treatment success I am unlikely to have any personal stake in the game.

As legislators you are called to be objective. To weigh the facts and likely effects – intended and otherwise – of a piece of legislation.

You should not care about my cancer status.

You also should not consider I-594 proponents tragic stories in your deliberations, even if they are cunningly wrapped around carefully crafted Madison Avenue sound bites.

You are called to be objective – to set aside emotionalism, melodrama, spin and the urge to “Do Something, Anything” about the crisis du jour. After all, to an activist *everything* is a crisis.

If passed, I-594 will put Washington law in conflict with Federal law. It will require law abiding gun dealers to choose whether to become federal felons, state felons or simply go out of business. I-594 will eliminate firearms safety training in the state of Washington and entrap thousands of law abiding gun owners into felonies and misdemeanors for things as simple as handing a rifle to a friend at an informal range.

I594 creates no safety benefit. A background check will not save school children from a person that kills a parent and steals their guns to commit an atrocity.

I-594 does not propose an improved background check, it purports to expand the same background check that Jared Loughner passed before he shot Congresswoman Gabby Gifford, killed six and injured 12 others.

It is not enough to “do something.” To claim otherwise is the argument of fools and frauds, and is generally counterproductive to achieving any worthwhile goal.

We must do something worth doing – I-594 is not it.

I ask you to fulfill your responsibilities as committee members and bring I-594 to a vote, and hope that you will vote it down – clearing the table for measures that are actually constructive and not an elaborate scheme to whittle away firearms rights through the death of a thousand cuts.

Thank you.

Trust and Integrity…

Integrity once lost can never be regained.

Yesterday I made the following comment on Facebook.

Cops will shoot anyone for any reason even if they create or aggravate the situation.

They have been trained at this point to exercise and only use one tool in their tool box.

With how heavily qualified immunity protects them I’ve lost all faith and trust in law enforcement. When a cop can create a dangerous situation unnecessarily, shoot someone, have it declared unjustified in the review and not face a single punishment other than being fired after committing homicide the system is broken.

The article that sparked my mini rant, was this:

Two North Carolina parents are in shock after local police shot and killed their 18-year-old son in their own home, while they watched helplessly.

Now this is not the first time I’ve seen or heard of something like this and it is merely another added to the list.  Not to mention incidents like the Seattle PD incident where the officer didn’t like someone carving some wood, proceeded to close the distance to someone he, as he stated was “armed”, and when the person finally turned around to see who was yelling at him the officer shot him.  The officer claimed the knife was open and that’s why he shot, it was determined however it was in fact closed.

Ultimately that shooting was ruled unjustified however the officer was not charged with any crime because “he was acting in a public capacity” at the time.

One of my friends then posted the following comment on my wall:

“Cops will shoot anyone for any reason…”. Every cop? You knew me as a safe fellow gun owner in college who stood along side you with an empty holster on the campus open carry awareness days. I’d like to think that I haven’t turned into a mindless killer now that I choose to put on a badge and serve the public

Initially the response was just going to be there except this is a serious problem and it’s a matter of trust and integrity, and I’m not going to go completely Kevin Baker this isn’t going to be short.

The problem is the police have no trust or integrity left.  I may trust my friend because I know him and don’t have to worry about him just shooting me because I know him and his character.  The problem is I don’t have that kind of rapport with most police officers, in fact most of them are a blank sheet that I know nothing about.

Just the same when an officer approaches me they know nothing about me, unless they pull me over.  Then they see that I have a concealed weapons permit when they run my license plate.  Fun little thing there is then the officer knows I am generally most likely an upstanding citizen.  Except some officers treat concealed permit holders as criminals because they dare exercise their rights and an immediate threat to the officers safety and everyone else.

But we’re not talking about their perspective, which is interesting since officer fatalities are at an all time low:

The annual report from the nonprofit National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund also found that deaths in the line of duty generally fell by 8 percent and were the fewest since 1959. 

According to the report, 111 federal, state, local, tribal and territorial officers were killed in the line of duty nationwide this past year, compared to 121 in 2012. 

Forty-six officers were killed in traffic related accidents, and 33 were killed by firearms. The number of firearms deaths fell 33 percent in 2013 and was the lowest since 1887.

Yes you read that right, officer friendly is more likely to die in an a traffic accident than be shot by Sumdood.  Interestingly the number of justifiable homicides committed by officers far outpaces that rate, but what is disturbing is the burden of proof for their justification is far less than a citizen who may be found in similar circumstances.  But this is ultimately neither here nor there it’s just an interesting piece of information when viewed in the additional context of the following incidents raises serious concern.

Because what this subject is really about is my perception of officer friendly.  Can I trust him?

All that I have to go on is the fact he’s been issued a badge and a gun by the state.  Neither of which vouches for his character, mental health, competence, or respect for others.  Approximately 1% of police officers will be found to have committed misconduct,  this doesn’t include unreported incidents or incidents where misconduct was likely but could not be proven or the officer was protected through judicial fiat.

Let’s look at the Canton PD incident, because honestly it is a fantastic example of why integrity and trust is being lost and why just because it’s only 1% doesn’t inspire confidence in them.

Officer Harless, while operating as a law enforcement officer and protected as such by qualified immunity,  threatened and harassed people on more than one occasion.  Watching the video that made him famous there is something even more disturbing, the complete inaction of his partner to do anything to protect the victim.  Instead of reigning the out of control officer Roid-Rage in he just sits off to the side and does nothing, silently complacent in the actions of his partner.

It gets better though because lets now investigate the fallout from that incident.  First we had a city council member justifying Harless’s actions and defending him.  That’s right, the out of control behavior was defended by a man elected to represent the public (victim) at large.  He was only brought in for a disciplinary hearing and no charges were filed due to his threats and actions, of which there was a history of misconduct.  He was eventually fired and a minor amount of faith restored as he was at least fired.

Except now the fun begins.  All of his fellow officers banded together to support him and the police union forced the city to hire him back.  This is about that, all those officers were OK with that behavior and the obvious pattern of it.  So much so they forced the government to hire him back and put that man who destroy the trust back in a position of power.  That is how you destroy integrity.

Let’s look back on the whole of the state sponsored criminal count.  There were a lot of very screwed up instances, that the story was darn near always the same.

Nonetheless, she says: “In violation of NISD police department procedures, Alvarado drew his weapon immediately after exiting the patrol car. With his gun drawn, he rushed through the gate and into the back yard. Within seconds from arriving at the residence, Alvarado shot and killed the unarmed boy hiding in the shed.”

Hell, I had created a special tag, “hiding in plain sight“, because I was finding so many school resource officers who were screwing girls in the school.

This boils down to a matter of trust and integrity and honestly the police have lost it.  Due to their job and position they should be striving for excellence and be dealing immediately and harshly with any misconduct.  Instead many officers are intimidated into not reporting misconduct.  This is a problem within the system.  I don’t know how to fix it but it is a problem and it’s destroying the trust and tarnishing any integrity that people see left.

Why should I not be afraid of someone I don’t know who’s been given a badge and a gun by the state and have a free pass to shoot someone one, even unlawfully?  You want to fix this problem, bring the police and the people back into line at the same bar.  The public are the police and the police are the public.  Between the laws and behavior that is no longer true.

If there honestly isn’t a problem, why is there such a high domestic violence rate among police officers?  Is it because many of them are so heavily trained on relying on their use of force to get their way they forget the other tools at their disposal?

I am more fearful of the police than I am of criminals.  I can at least fight back against a criminal.  The police however can kick down my door in the middle of the night, shoot my dog, shoot me, shoot my wife, and then say oops wrong house and they all get a pass.  Why didn’t they just !@#$ing knock on my door and show me the warrant?

Oh the criminal is dangerous and he might destroy evidence.  Here’s a !@#$ing idea then, catch him on his drive to work or when he’s away from the house.  The majority of no-knock warrants are unnecessary and merely used to continue justifying funding.

Do police have a right to go home safe at the end of the day, sure, but they have no more of a right to that than the people they serve.  Honestly in signing on the dotted line, they sign on for the additional risk their job brings.  If they can’t handle it they need to go work someplace else.

Shooting a grandfather in the back while he’s lying on the ground isn’t acceptable, neither is shooting a little girl in the face, or shooting a child’s dog in a cage in front of the child.  The people aren’t the ones creating this attitude, it’s the actions and behavior of police officers.  If they want the support and trust of law-abiding citizens, they need to earn it.  Letting incidents like this happen on a regular basis without the uproar of other officers just makes them all complicit.

They are also consistently exempt from laws that are applied to the rest of the general public, that is not acceptable and is yet another example of Tyranny, and the police are happy enough to enjoy it.  Again, destroying trust, faith, and integrity one step at a time.

The actions and behavior of the police have created this rift and it’s going to take them changing their behavior to fix it.  Even then it will take a long period of time.  They need to collectively step up to the plate push out the corruption, embrace the suck and ensure that laws are applied equally across everyone, including themselves.  If some officer says, high capacity magazines should be outlawed, he should be planning on surrendering the ones from his patrol car, his house, and his locker as well.

A man of character will stand up and do the right thing, even if it hurts him personally.  I do not see men of character in law enforcement.  I see a group of men, some of whom are corrupt, but overall who operate as a “brotherhood” and will defend their brother even if he has done something wrong.  Brotherhood serves a purpose, but there’s a point where character should take over.

Quote of the Day – Phssthpok (1/6/2014)

Cops take full responsibility for each bullet that leaves their gun,  the same way that Attorney general Janet Reno took ‘full responsibility’ for the Waco massacre…

Phssthpok – GBC Chat

January 6th, 2014


[It was in reference to this among other similar incidents.  I have nothing else to ad. -B]

 

Today’s hour long educational presentation…

Even if you don’t really speak tech, watch it.  He doesn’t really go into deep details, though it does require some understanding of how networking works.

If you still don’t want to take the hour let me synopsize it into one single sentence:

Nothing is safe.

And there isn’t much of a hope for immediate improvement either because the NSA is leaning on organizations to leave a lot of this crap in place.  Not to mention they do not report security threats instead they want them left open for exploitation.

There are couple things that desperately need to change, one of the biggest is security needs to stop being an afterthought in software and systems development.  I’ve said it before folks, we’re in a cold war and one side just doesn’t want to admit the truth of the matter yet.

A Year In Review, Why I’ve Been Quiet…

So I slacked off on blogging this year.  One of the bigger reasons I made quite apparent. There were a couple of other things going on that I kept on the down-low and at this point I will go ahead and let the cats, yes plural, out of the bag.

First up my mom gave me a call last March letting me know she was going to be having surgery later that month.  Why was she going in for surgery?  Well luckily they found the cancer in her breast before it moved past stage two.  They took the surrounding lymph nodes to be safe and all of them came back clear.  She underwent radiation therapy and as of October she’s clear.  All that’s left at this point is six years of pills.

I’ve already had one close run in with cancer and frankly I wasn’t the happiest of campers when my mom told me.  But alas things are better now on that front, now onto the right flank.

About the same time my mom’s ordeal started the father-in-law went in to see a cardiologist.  Initially his heart was out of rhythm (he was in constant A-fib) and no one could figure out why. Not only that but his heart was operating well below normal capacities.

While undergoing one of the tests they shocked his heart and it went back into sinus rhythm.  The heart has continued to improve but they discovered the underlying cause; severe mitral valve prolapse. The good news is we now had the cause and we found out how to treat it.  The bad news is it means messing with his ticker.  Not to mention the loss of his 33-year-old mustache (plus normally he’s had a beard for the past who knows how long).

MadScientist

Last week we were all very happy when it appeared that this was going to be the procedure used(video of the surgery by the surgeon doing the procedure) to repair/replace the valve.  Now for no plan survives first contact with the enemy news.  Surgery started at 0730 this morning and at 0830 we got a call from the MIL.  She informed us that they couldn’t get a solid read on the valve through the TEE.  What this means is that they cannot do the minimal incision and instead will be cracking his chest open.  So thoughts and prayers right now would be appreciated on this front.

So between moving jobs, cancer, and a heart problem I’ve had other things on my mind this year.  The last thing I wanted to think about is how a bunch of busy body assholes dislike how I spend my free time and relieve stress.  How I’m such a horrible person because I want people to have the best tools to fight back.  How I’m a horrible person because going behind a firearm results in something quite a lot like this:

Yeah, I didn’t want to think about that horse crap because frankly there are more important things to worry about.  If something major had happened I probably would have joined the drum beats again but the nice thing is with this crowd is we’re big enough that someone else can and will pick up the slack when you can’t.

Once we can get the move taken care of and settle back in on the other side of the state things should return to normal.  In the mean time I’ll keep blogging here and there and I’m going to work my ass off on making 2014 a hell of a lot better than 2013.