“Carrying guns in the state Capitol, part of the gun bill approved by the Iowa Senate, does not make us free [Gun bill OK’d by Senate, April 5]. Imagine attending a rally at the Capitol rotunda. No one will really feel free expressing a view if someone other than a security officer is carrying a gun. This is an unnecessary bill that leads to loss of freedom.” – Rev. Denny Coon, Ankeny

36 Responses to Quote of the Day: Freedom’s Just Another Word for Feeling Free

  1. Translation: I won’t feel free until I can threaten/use violence against dissenting political views without fear of reprisal.

    • Reprisal?

      Pffftpt. They’re just helping you understand that doing things their way is for your own good.

      And that you’re not bright enough to understand that.

      (According to them…)

    • When only enforcers from the government are allowed to carry firearms you are certainly not free.

  2. The proof of the fallacy just voiced it is just to the north of Iowa in my home state of Minnesota. Lawful carry in the capitol complex has been legal for over thirteen years since it predates the passing of our shall issue carry law.
    Every so often the politicians who yearn for more gun restrictions try to come up with some reasoning to repeal or restrict the law and the representative from the State Patrol who are responsible for Capitol security tell them there has never been a single problem with those who lawfully carry.
    As for the contention that it somehow stifles speech, not too long ago there was a group of Trump supporters showing support and the requisite counter-protesters showed up to disrupt things. Somehow they felt safe enough to set off smoke bombs, pepper spray, and fireworks inside the Capitol.
    And it turns out that one of those arrested was the son of former Vice Presidential hopeful Tim Kaine.

    • Mark, you are simply missing the implicit argument whenever comparisons are made between States and their liberal/tyrannical gun laws. You compare IA/MN. Out East, we compare NJ/PA or VA/MD. Out West they compare CA/NM-AZ-OR-WA. Why are there differences in gun-laws between States? It’s simply explained by the fact that there are differences between people; as individuals, and as societies.

      Surely you – as a Minnesotan – ought to see this difference between peoples very clearly. Your home State (and mine) is the fountainhead of the expression “Minnesota Nice”. Likewise, VA is the State for Lovers. PA is the home of Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly-Love. You, of all people, should be able to tell the difference between the people of your State and those of your neighbors.

      The peoples of IA, CA, MD, NJ et al. are – by comparison – foaming-at-the-mouth belligerents. And these are the so-called “law-abiding” who retain their 2A-“Rights” (such as they remain). Even the best of residents of these States can’t be trusted with a gun unless it is at a range with armed Range Safety Officers.

      The residents of these States – especially CA, MD, NJ – know their neighbors; they know they can’t be trusted with gun-freedom. That’s why they won’t liberalize their gun-laws.

      It is our DUTY to get them to SPEAK-UP and opine as to how UN-trustworthy THEIR neighbors really are. Once we can get this dirty linen aired in the open then we can begin the discussion about how to reform the people of such States so that they will behave responsibly in public.

      Perhaps National-Reciprocity would help here. If CWP-holders from States with responsible populations could travel armed in the Won’t-Issue States, their residents would begin to understand how peaceable – responsible – residents of other States behave in public – even while armed.

      • I’m not sure you understand the meaning of ‘Minnesota nice’. It’s kind of the opposite of New York nasty. In NYC, just because someone makes lewd suggestions about your mother it doesn’t mean they’re angry or dislike you. In MN, just because someone is nice to your face it doesn’t mean that they like you. Kind of like down south where they say ‘bless your heart’ when they mean ‘you’re a f#*kin’ idiot’. Minnesota nice just means they’re too polite to tell you what they really think.

    • Is the State Patrol happy to testify to that? Visits to Austin get an eye roll from DPS when I visit. I suspect they’d happily support a ban at the Capitol.

    • Governor,

      Actually, being able to do anything and everything you want — including forcing your will upon others — really is ultimate freedom. Of course forcing your will upon others is also a crime. Nevertheless, the Progressive idea of freedom is, technically speaking, correct.

      That is why I prefer the word LIBERTY over the word FREEDOM. In my mind liberty means you can do whatever you want as long as you do not threaten or cause harm/loss to other people. (And preventing another person from exercising their right to free speech does harm the other person.)

      Interesting sidenote: we all agree that threatening another person with harm/loss is a crime. At what point does acting with negligence rise to the level of threatening another person? For example: blindly discharging a firearm in a random direction in a city clearly threatens the lives and property of other people and is a crime. How much less dangerous does something have to be until it is no longer a crime?

      • Used to be that negligence wasn’t even a civil wrong until there was a harm.

        I think cars, and industrialization in general, has greatly lowered the bar for when negligence is a crime. I mean, is coming to a red light at intersection (no cars for miles in any direction), stopping, then going as if it was a stop sign negligent? It’s definitely a crime.

        • TX_Lawyer,

          I hear you.

          I believe stopping at a red light and then proceeding through when there are no cars within something like 1/2 mile is not at all dangerous nor negligent … and therefore should not be a crime.

          Blowing through a red light at 55 m.p.h. is exceedingly dangerous and should be a crime even if the driver did not crash into anyone.

          The really questionable area: maximum speed. At what speed is the driver exceedingly dangerous? Going 35 m.p.h. in a neighborhood posted with a 25 m.p.h. speed limit is certainly NOT dangerous and should not be a crime. Going 90 m.p.h. through that same neighborhood probably constitutes extreme risk and should be a crime. At what speed does speeding transition from exceeding the posted speed limit and become an extreme risk and hence a crime? Beats me.

        • Yup, the first thing I ask any potential tort client is, “What’s your compensable loss? Hurt feelings?”

        • Hurt feelings? = emotional trauma. That’s some serious money right there.

      • u_s, first you need to distinguish between negligent behavior and reckless behavior. Then check the laws in your own state. In my case that’s IA code 742.30

        724.30 Reckless use of a firearm.
        A person who intentionally discharges a firearm in a reckless manner commits the following:
        1. A class C felony if a serious injury occurs.
        2. A class D felony if a bodily injury which is not a serious injury occurs.
        3. An aggravated misdemeanor if property damage occurs without a serious injury or bodily injury occurring.
        4. A simple misdemeanor if no injury to a person or damage to property occurs.

        https://www.legis.iowa.gov/DOCS/ACO/IC/LINC/Chapter.724.pdf

  3. Strange, when I am surrounded by other free, armed citizens I tend to feel quite free (and safe) myself. It is interesting that this guy (who looks like some sort of PBS reject host) feels safer surrounded by hired guns.

    Why would an elected representative not feel free or safe around his armed constituency? Furthermore, why would he feel better having his employers disarmed, and his babysitters armed?

  4. Translation:

    Actually being free is not free. Actually being constrained and “feelilng” free is free. Got it.

  5. Naw, He’s just a warm and fuzzy-feely Rev. who has no clue…”Unicorns, and Rainbows mentality…”

  6. Freedom, true freedom, is only achieved face down, bleeding out, when somebody (that you might have been able to stop) kills you.

  7. So this tells me that, were he armed, this professor would attempt to use his weapon to stifle the speech of those he disagrees with. Luckily the rest of us don’t tend to behave as he would…

  8. He is correct in one sense, carrying a gun, or being able to carry a gun does not make one free. At the same time, not being able to carry gun absolutely makes a person less free.

  9. I think that many people that got in trouble in thier home states came to Calif, or Chicago, along with immigrants from other countries that came here for whatever reason. Now, many people have different reasons for leaving where they grew up and thier families and societies.
    Many leave because they are not comfortable with some aspects of home, some are given money by relatives to leave and not come back.
    Other situations, like trying to get a job, ect, is there also.

    These centers of places to start anew end up taking in a lot of flakes. That is what happenned to Calif and what happenned in Chicago. If a black kid or couple or whole got the attention of the local white bully boys for doing or saying something they did not like, many would leave that area for Chicago, where many had gone before.

    Life wasn’t easy for them, either. 4 generations later, the decendants are still there and doing worse things than thier grandfathers did just to survive in that community.

    SoCal has many immigrants from everywhere, most from places where if a gun is seen, someone is in big trouble, so they support gun grabbers, they think that ownership makes you a murderer and you live by that gun.

    Blame the people that made it that way, the newer ones from somewhere else, not the people that have been there for generations.

  10. Huh. And here I felt a conscious moment of freedom just yesterday when I went to pick up a breakfast burrito and saw a total stranger in a shirt that said “polygunist.”

    I don’t know if he was armed or not, and it really didn’t matter because he was just there to pick up food, too. And I thought, “here’s someone who respects the Second Amendment enough to exercise his First Amendment right to say so with a clever t-shirt. My rights, my community and I are all probably just a bit safer for having this guy around.” So I gave a little nod and wave to say thanks as I left.

    So *that’s* what “feeling free” feels like, when you’re not so hung up on your prejudices that the mere *idea* of an armed, non-governmental stranger registers as some sort of existential threat.

  11. As a native Iowan, I’m still just trying to get over the pain of MarkPA putting Iowa in the same class as California, Maryland and New Jersey. Especially since Iowa has shall issue, just sent stand-your-ground to the Governor to sign, and recognizes the Minnesota permit while Minnesota refuses to recognize the Iowa permit. Cut me to the quick, you did. (Joke)

  12. His statement doesn’t make logical sense.

    No one will really feel free expressing a view if someone other than a security officer is carrying a gun.

    1). If they wanted to shoot you (a major offense), then they wouldn’t care about breaking a law that says they can’t carry around guns (a lesser offense).

    2). Security guards are people too. They aren’t special. They aren’t genetically engineered people who don’t have opinions, etc. in other words, they are no different from the regular people in the crowd.

    3). The penalty is the same for the security guard and the attendee. They are not different or special.

    4). The guy doesn’t seem to be able to discern the difference between fear and freedom.

  13. “No one will really feel free …”

    I don’t really care how a grown man feels if me lawfully carrying a gun upsets him. We should all have empathy and compassion for others; we should care how our actions affect them emotionally, but at a certain point, it is time to put on your big boy pants and grow the … up.

    Furthermore, empathy, compassion and caring go both ways. Denny Coon shouldn’t allow his irrational to fears affect the way other people are allowed to live their lives. Does he know how it makes me feel to have my rights stripped because he is a baby who won’t grow up? Maybe I feel violated by the government. Maybe I feel unsafe because I feel the government must be planning something if they can’t trust me to be armed. Maybe I feel unsafe because I was the victim of a crime.

    We can’t base our laws on how those laws will make people feel. That’s just moronic and juvenile.

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