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“Firearms owners get it — so you’re preaching to the choir when you’re pounding your fist and stomping your feet and making demands about your rights. The minds and hearts you need to change are everyday people, the non-gun owning community, the politicians, the media. That’s who your target audience needs to be. Hardline action doesn’t really appeal to most of them.” – Canadian Coalition for Firearms Rights director Tracey Wilson in Ottawa’s ‘Gun Goddess’ has sights set on reframing Canada’s firearms debate [via ottawacitizen.com]

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26 Responses to Blue Force Gear Quote of the Day: You Have to Know Where to Direct Your Fire

  1. “Hardline action doesn’t really appeal to most [non-gun owning community, politicians, the media].” – Canadian Coalition for Firearms Rights director Tracey Wilson

    Balogna! The non-gun owning community, politicians, and the media LOVE hardline action so long as The Almighty State is dishing out hardline action on the good people who want to keep and bear arms.

    Rather than trying to find a way to “play nice” with such people, we must tell them how utterly obscene it is when they pick and choose who gets to practice which rights.

    • Canadians are very passive people and do not react well to hardline anything. Imagine an entire country made up of democrats, that’s Canada.

      • “Peace, order, good government” is motto for Canada, HM Crown Lands. It is no accident that a police officer, the RCMP mountie, is the national symbol for Canada. For all if its national health care, it remains a conservative nation. That Canada received Tories from our American Revolution is more than symbolic. Canadians are strong on group rights but minimize individual rights. unlike the USA.
        Finally, from my time working in Canada I’d say that Canadians are more subjects than citizens.

  2. At 50,000 feet, this is good advice. Getting closer to ground level, yes, work on more ambivalent non-gun owners to win hearts and minds. The common sense stuff like police generally don’t arrive until after the crime has occurred, big city crime ramping up perhaps signaling an end to the lowest violent crime rates of modern time.

    As for the media, maybe the Canadian media can be changed. The majority of the American media is a lost cause. They worship gun control and confiscation as one of the progressive ten commandments. All we can do with them is expose and discredit the media as the unethical, lying, corrupt, and evil people that they are.

    • Couldn’t agree more with your practical suggestions for winning over non-gun owners. Use female gun owners to emphasize home and self-defense scenarios in light of the recent crime spikes in major cities. I think many females, particularly single females, would be receptive to such a campaign. Also, we need a educational campaign to show exactly how safe firearms really are when handled properly to counteract the media’s attempt to demonize them. If we’re going to preserve our natural right to keep and bear arms, we need to expand our numbers now before it’s too late.

  3. “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”

    Barry Goldwater.

      • True, but Goldwater’s campaign helped establish conservatism as a mainstream political ideology, in turn making possible Reagan’s victory and the GOP’s takeover of Congress in 1994.

        All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.

        Arthur Schopenhauer

        We’re still in between stages one and two, or so, but we’re making progress toward stage three.

  4. I was a non gun owner for 47 years. I was pro 2A. Not owning guns has nothing to do with belief in the Constitution nor does being a gun owner automatically qualify you as a patriot. Ever heard of a Fudd?

    • I’ve spent about 2 years working on a fudd. (a good friend and a mechanic where I work) Within the last 6 months or so, I finally have convinced him that after they are done banning my FAL, his lever 30-30 is next. He is a convert, and with him, his two teenage boys.

      Oddly enough, the argument that did the most to win him over was about the 1994 awb. I spent a great deal of time explaining what exactly the gov decided was an assault rifle. The features ban (not functionality ban) is what got him actually thinking about how capricious and arbitrary the ban was. I think that got the cogs in his head turning about how maybe all the gun laws are the same.

    • “Not owning guns has nothing to do with belief in the Constitution”

      ?

      Can you believe in the Constitution and completely abdicate your role in defending it? What if defense of the Constitution, and it’s recited rights falls solely to you? Are you going to arm-up after the fact?

      Further, do you have a right that you never exercise?

      • Yes; there are ways of defending – and attacking – the Constitution other than by force of arms.

        And yes , just because you don’t choose to exercise a right, does not mean that right does not exist. For instance I choose to not picket my local government every day, but I have not given up my right to do so should the need or desire arise.

        • I contend that you have no rights until they are exercised. Further, that you have the freedom to do [very nearly] anything and everything you ‘want’, it is the Liberty to do it again, or anything else thereafter that is the true test of what your “rights” are.

        • If you were denied your right to picket (peaceably or otherwise) if you had not previously acted on your RTKABA, you have lesser guarantee of recourse.

      • Individuals have every right to decide not to spend their hard-earned money on hardware they don’t think they’ll ever need. This is not abdicating their responsibility to defend the Constitution.

        RKBA is the only enumerated right that requires cash to exercise. Ammo, range fees, a safe for secure storage – it all adds up. Being a responsible gun owner requires more than a Hi-Point and a box of 9mm.

        You don’t need to go to church to support religious liberty. You don’t need to print a newspaper to support freedom of the press. And you don’t need to own guns to support the Second Amendment.

  5. It’s like two people stretching a big rubber band between them. It doesn’t matter who has moved further, it matters who lets-go first.

    And gun owners need to be first.

  6. Think it’s tough here? Canada has no 2A at all, and even the general concept of self defense is a totally ambiguous mess under Canadian law. Given Canadian safe storage law it is almost physically impossible to use a handgun or AR to defend your home – Unrestricted weapons like pump shotties are more plausible. Of course there is no carry, concealed or otherwise – even off-duty cops cannot carry.

    Canada does have a strong hunting and shooting tradition in rural areas, but Canada’s population distribution is even-meow urban heavy than America’s.

    Canada’s firearms legislation gives a huge amount of discretion to Cabinet and the RCMP – they can reclassify a gun on a whim and demand that it be turned in.

    Canadian gun owners survive on the sufferance of a government that is at best indifferent, and at worst hostile.

  7. Meh-good luck changing hearts and minds. Maybe they need a dose of Barry Goldwater>”Extremism in the pursuit of liberty is no vice”…

    • I think hearts and minds are changing. The proliferation of right-to-carry laws has resulted in lots of new gun owners (if the number of Illinois FOID cards is any indication).

      I believe this is the main reason some of the communist states (California, New York, etc.) are pushing so hard to make gun ownership difficult and expensive. They realize that once gun ownership becomes mainstream, they have lost the battle.

  8. He’s right. In an argument generally you are not trying to convince your opponent. You are trying to convince those people who are watching.

    Most anti-gun sentiment is based on fear. The thing that eliminates fear is experience. So you want to change the debate, take an anti-gun or gun-agnostic friend shooting. Teach them the 4 rules of safety. Tell them how all responsible firearms owners are very serious we are about them and we take offense when they are not followed (we like our body parts just where they are, thank you). Answer their questions (including the famous “doesn’t AR stand for automatic rifle?”). Let them shoot an AR. They will have fun and you will have fun.

    Then the next time at some dinner party when the subject comes up that person will say that they shot an AR (probably with a mischievous smile) and that it was fun and totally safe (they may even explain the safety rules – or what they could remember). Then next time some idiot politician gets up on TV and starts talking about clips that person will think “Oh, now I get why gun people are not willing to compromise with these people, they don’t even know the parts of a gun. How can they propose and sort of ‘sensible regulation'”. Maybe that person asks to go again and buys himself/herself a gun and then you have a real convert.

    Long story made short: this is an emotional argument for the left and you are not going to win it citing the Constitution or statistics.

    • Exactly right. It’s an emotional argument — for both sides.

      Think about it: why do you even bother looking up all those facts and remembering them? Why bother citing the Constitution? Because you CARE about it. Because you’re emotionally invested in the topic.

      This is why range trips are such an effective conversion tool. If you can get your anti-gun acquaintances to make an emotional connection to the truth, that’s when you start to change minds.

    • Do you have any idea how many Denver liberals I’ve offered to take to the range only to be met with responses like “I’ll only go to the range only if on the way home we stop by the family of the victims of the theatre shooting (Aurora) so you can see what guns REALLY do”, or my favorite “I’ll come to the range if you come to planned parenthood and watch an abortion.”
      These guys are fully assimilated into the collective, range trips aren’t changing anything. Look at what’s-his-name, Kuntzman. Dude got PTSD at a range!

      • True, some people are unreachable. Nothing we can do about them — but there are still people out there whose emotions haven’t shut down all rational thought (at least that’s what I keep telling myself).

  9. The minds and hearts you need to change are everyday people

    In the US, everyday people are too stupid to change their own underwear, much less their hearts and minds.

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