VA governor defends Charlottesville response: Militia members had ‘better’ guns than police blares the Business Inser headline. BI’s firearms-related coverage is usually neutral-ish. Not this time . . .

Reading that, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe — himself a resolute anti-gunner — was claiming that the Charlottesville po-po were unable to police the rally because the militia members had better guns than the police (and wonder what guns he was talking about).

Nope! The whole quote reads as follows:

“You saw the militia walking down the street, you would have thought they were an army … I was just talking to the State Police upstairs; [the militia members] had better equipment than our State Police had,” McAuliffe said. “And yet not a shot was fired, zero property damage.”

So Governor McAuliffe was saying the presence of a well-armed militia did not lead to the violence. An idea that Business Insider writer Harrison Jacobs couldn’t leave as-is, or without comment.

McAuliffe’s response that law enforcement’s handling of the violence was successful because there were no bullets fired and “zero property damage” would appear to ignore that dozens were left injured and a 32-year-old woman, Heather Heyer, was killed when an apparent white supremacist plowed his car into a crowd.

McAuliffe, for his part, suggested that Heyer’s death couldn’t have been prevented.

“You can’t stop some crazy guy who came here from Ohio and used his car as a weapon. He is a terrorist,” he said.

True that. And while the Charlottesville police and their out-of-town colleagues could have intervened when the melees broke out, it’s also true that any such intervention could have made the situation much worse.

Judgement call, really. And unlike the judgement call Business Insider made with its half-true headline, you could argue that the cops did the right thing in order to preserve public safety.

80 Responses to VA Gov. McAuliffe: Militia Had Better Guns Than the Police! And . . .

  1. ‘Militia members had ‘better’ guns than police’

    Yeah, that’s the point. The police are law enforcement. The militia are for only used in civil emergency or national defense. But of course, who would be surprised that a democrat wouldn’t get that.

      • Oh, of course. I know exactly what he means as well as the reality of what weapons they have. But at the same time the statement is still true, in at least theory.

      • Some of them surely did. Individuals buying as such don’t have to take bids and can blow whatever budge they want!

      • The governor had the National guard waiting in the wings. Surely they out-gunned the militia men. Maybe McAuliffe forgot about his own “State of Emergency” declaration.

        • His State of Emergency Declaration was made at 10 am, before any violence had taken place. It was used as the rationale for the police to force the alt-right group out of their designated venue before they could speak (in violation of an injunction from a Federal judge) and right into the crowd of antifa waiting to attack. They could have taken the group out of the park through several other egress routes and avoided that.

          It is starting to look like the violence between the groups and the chaos that resulted were engineered by the police, mayor, and governor. I hope while the DOJ is looking into the car attack, they are also looking into the chain of events that that precipitated it, and those in office who share responsibility for it.

      • But it sounds more scary the way he said it like the time he said 93 million Americans die each day from guns.
        (We’re all dead we just don’t know it)

    • Just as the cops were told to stand down here as they stood back and did nothing, just like Baltimore with BLM, just like at the battle Sacromento, bearkly, San Jose, Chicago (wow I am noticing a pattern here).

      • Yup, and in fact I have seen reports the the Charlottesville PD were told to stand down in this situation.

        If there ever was a time the militia again it would be now.

    • “I was just talking to the State Police upstairs; [the militia members] had better equipment than our State Police had”
      So we need more money for cool stuff

  2. [the militia members] had better equipment than our State Police had,” McAuliffe said.

    Ironclad law of economics. People are more careful with their own money than they are with other peoples’ money.

  3. The story my brother-in-law (a dedicated Progressive) sent to my wife said that McAuliffe ordered the State Police to stand down, thus allowing the Antifa to engage in “mischief,” and which further led to the local (Democrat) mayor to cancel the event before it got started. I smell a conspiracy here to shut down the Alt-right speechifying, to be frank. As I watched riot police step in to prevent a lynching of one of the event organizers at a press-conference afterwards, any implication that the way this was handled was in the interest of public safety is a crock.

    To be clear, I do not profess the racist hate theology of some of these groups “Alt-right” groups, but I “defend to the death” their right to speak, as did the ACLU in defending the right of the American Nazi Party to march in the predominantly Jewish (with concentration camp survivors) of Skokie, Illinois. The remedy to speech one finds offensive is more speech, not crushing it.

    • Frankly if we had a way to find out one way or another, I’d be willing to place actual money on the “KKK” and “neo-nazi” groups in question being at least 1/4th undercover/honeytrapping law enforcement.

        • I don’t think I’d take the bet about the honeytrapping, but there’s no denying that there was an order for law enforcement to stand down. Just search the various YouTube videos and you will see the large police presence, in riot gear, while the alt-right people are paraded around the antifa folks and then after the alt-right groups are told to disperse the police dispersed right along with them and the antifa folks just kept right on at it.

          Like Mark, I am a staunch supporter of free speech. I am a libertarian and I don’t condone any violence by either side…but this overreaction to the supposed violence of the alt-right in this instance is just absurd. They got a permit to hold a rally at the statue that was being removed. They tried to pull the permit. The group petitioned the federal government and they said that the permit was valid and that they had the right to assemble there. It was the antifa protesters that stirred this whole thing up because they have no tolerance for free speech – it doesn’t matter if it is racist speech – they do not have the right to attach the speakers with violence!

          Since YouTube is owned by Gulag – I mean Google – I’m sure they will take down some of the more damning videos and eye witness commentary, but the truth is out there from people who were on the ground if you care to look for it.

      • Didn’t it come out that some of the agitators at the 1999 WTO riot were LEOs or military? Maybe I’m remembering wrong.

      • That’d be one hell of a honey trap. Some big, dirty, fat klansman, or nazi sow, trying to lure young fascist men into a sleazy motel…

      • I would venture that a large percentage of the “alt-right” group and possibly their organizers were leftists seeking to create a violent situation. With today’s media the left will win in any case.

        • The alt-right group supposedly planned for weeks in advance with police on a security plan to avoid violence. The police basically chucked that plan just before the rally was about to start, and did almost exactly the opposite. They forced the groups together by driving the alt-right group out of the park via the one route that would put them right in the crowd of antifa.

        • The alt-right is the left, this is the same is Socialists renaming themselves Progressives.

    • McAuliffe and the mayor ain’t the only VA broke (D)1<Ks that need fixing. Funny this sh_t trouble just gets invited to where there are throngs of inbred liberal communist POS (D).

  4. The most concerning thing with this whole situation is that somehow it put me agreeing with Gov McAuliffe on something firearms related. Do I have to go cleanse myself in the blood of a chicken now? #shockedandconfused

    • A chicken ain’t gonna cut it JWT. Any decent blót should consist of at least a pig or a horse. Of course, to really get through to Odin, it would be helpful if you had an expendable prisoner.

      • Virgin. That’s why I had to give up religion. My virgins were never still virgins by the time I got them to the alter.

  5. Of course people who draw attention to themselves by openly carrying rifles aren’t going to just start a random rampage and just start shooting people. People who rampage want anonymity for as long as possible and try to hide their weapons until the last possible moment.

    Which brings us to concealed carry. Law abiding citizens who are willing to pay money out of their pocket to prove they have no violent or felonious history (requirements for that state) are also not the ones to start a random rampage. Anyone willing to commit murder won’t first jump through legal hoops, pay cash, and then wait for permission to carry a weapon.

    Common sense to us… unfortunately, very few on the left are willing to take 30 seconds and think through some basic questions.

    • Your statement goes a step too far. CCW holders have AND do commit crimes. Rarely, but they do. Passing a check 3 years ago, does not mean your not going to go postal on Friday. As for the militia types? Owning a gun and camo does not make one a LEO or any sort of authority.

      • “CCW holders have AND do commit crimes.” True. At rate much lower than LEOs. And mamy times lower than general population.

  6. Better weapons than the police? How many Bearcats and MRAPs did the protestors bring? How many riot grenade launchers?

  7. This town and police had several months to come up with a safety plan. They did at least that is what the event organizer said. On the day of the event the police decided not to follow the plan put forth months before. The way the day unfolded and what the mayor was saying you’d think he was using this event as a campaign rally. Maybe he wanted this to go side ways?

    Everyone in this country has the right to peaceably assemble and speak without fear of violence. Even Nazis and Antifa communists. The police messed up.

    • “Everyone in this country has the right to peaceably assemble and speak without fear of violence.”

      Nah. You have no such right, as the only way to make sure you have no ‘fear of violence’ would be to abridge the actual rights of others to assuage your fears and the fears of everyone else (no matter how absurd the fear).

      If you show up at a hate rally the government can not stop you from speaking but it isn’t obligated to save your ass either. Same thing for the antifas. Two groups that went there for a fight, and they got it.

      • “And … none of those militia members (who were armed better than the police) mowed down anyone!”

        True.

        I was thinking more along the lines of, “And that is as it should be.”

    • Yep. I’m not constrained by state budgets or a handful of procurement clerks deciding what i’m gonna be using in the field.

  8. Can’t make people love each other. Just look at the former Soviet Union, former Yugoslavia, or most of the African nations. A ruthless dictator can force accommodation for a while but eventually, cultural differences burst out in ruthless violence. it’s human nature.

  9. Does he not know that police agencies can readily buy machine guns and explosives direct from the manufacturer, while us “little people” can’t?

    No, of course not. He’s an indolent bottom-feeder and a politician (but I repeat myself). Every-damn-thing out of his mouth a repeatedly-falsified, long-defunct, and bold-faced lie no matter what he opens his cock holster to talk about, and no one with any actual pull will ever call him on it and make him bring his beady little eyes to review his countless egregious errors.

  10. Listened to Rush Limbaugh today. He had(maybe)inside information that the local 5-O were ordered to “stand down”. Soros has some deep pockets. Both “sides” suck…laughable about being “outgunned”.

  11. Fox News has had a distinctly and obviously anti-gun bias for the last few days, referring repeatedly to open carry, automatic weapons etc. As if the hate groups were openly carrying machine guns, and that’s what was to blame for the violence.

    The major injuries btw were caused by autos, some baseball bats, and fists.

    People should loudly reject Fox and change the channel.

  12. If the VA State Police wanted to prevent violence why did they not follow their own safety plan worked out with the rally organizers and evacuate the rally members through the sparsely populated north side of the park, but instead forced the groups together on the crowded south side? That is when the bulk of the violence happened. People got clubbed and maced, but no one shot anyone. The Alt Right guys showed good disciple and marched to McIntire park to try to have the rally rather than play hide the bike lock with Antifa for the amusement of the media.

    “McAuliffe, for his part, suggested that Heyer’s death couldn’t have been prevented.
    ‘You can’t stop some crazy guy who came here from Ohio and used his car as a weapon. He is a terrorist,’ he said.”

    I guess we will never know because the cops left Antifa alone to do whatever they do. I will say one good thing about Antifa. At least they were organized enough to have volunteer medics. Thank God, because those guys saved lives when it took ages for the first cop to show up. I guess the authorities were running around the golf course chasing white hoods near McIntire where the helicopter went down hours later. Also don’t credit the Charlottesville PD with this shit show. They were not involved an any law enforcement that day. It was the VA State Police, McAuliffe’s personal guys, who took over and were running things. They were the ones who violated the Federal court and canceling the rally before it started.

  13. I totally support the rights of anyone getting any weapon they can afford to pay for period. I just want to same opportunity to buy my choice of weapons as well.
    And since the VA governor made sure his police departments where given military grade weapons, I want them as well.
    McAuliffe is democrat racist pig who will make sure blacks are disarmed in public housing projects.

    He, is waving the Nazi flag, as a reason to confiscate the guns of all civilians.

  14. Is the governor blaming the militia for the failure of the police to prevent violence? I don’t understand his point. Were e the militia supposed to maintain the peace because they had better guns -or- were the police afraid to maintain peace because the militia posed a threat to them?

  15. Well of course the protesters were better armed- they were carrying drop-safe Glocks!

    All kidding aside, it was nice of the governor to admit that protesters didn’t start shooting just because they were carrying guns. Hell must have frozen over again. First it was the Cubs, now a politician is telling the truth.

  16. My wife’s aunt (now deceased) survived the Holocaust. When I visited her small apartment in Jerusalem, she asked me why Neo-Nazi’s are allowed to speak their views openly in America. I told her it was so good people always knew who the bad people were, and so good ideas could be contrasted with bad ones.

    That was decades ago, My thinking back then was that Americans would always be wise enough to choose love over hatred, and acceptance over bigotry in the long run. All we had to do was to give everybody an equal platform to speak, and good would triumph over evil.

    Now I’m much less optimistic. Foreign powers are obviously playing with our electoral process. The “alt-right” were encouraged to come slithering out of their holes by the Demagogue-In-Chief. People are living in bubbles, only listening to what they want to believe, and ignoring all other data.

    So I have revised my thinking. If you are a jackbooted thug, or a cynical representative of a meddling foreign government, then I don’t want you influencing young minds.

    One final note: I actually saw the same person in two different pictures today. In one picture, he was a member of the “well ordered militia” that so many comment posters here seemed to be enamored with. In another picture, he was wearing the familiar white peaked hat that perpetrated terror in the South for way too long.

    So People of the Gun, choose your friends wisely. We may have to round them up someday. It’s not like we haven’t done it before.

  17. “Militia members had ‘better’ guns than police”

    Sure they did. I clearly remember the militia having full auto M4s, MRAPs, attack dogs and several thousand well-armed friends.

  18. I found the press conference video of Richard Spencer, one of the alt-right leaders who was supposed to speak at the rally, giving the press a break-down of how the police basically FUBAR’d the whole security plan and set the chaos in motion.

  19. The police shouldn’t even be in the middle I’d rather see them patrolling and answering calls it really upsets me when hundreds of cops have to babysit useless people. If your life is so miserable you need to waste your time at this kind of KKK and communist nonsense you are worthless. Just get a life or go kill each others in the middle of nowhere, but it is always obvious to me there is some restraint on both sides, a while ago when people really wanted to slaughter the other side they found a way, be it with swords, bows, firearms you name it. And the propaganda on both sides is hilarious.

  20. I am so tacticool it’s not even human anymore. All the articles and photos convinced me to go spend a few thousands bucks on some tactical militia wannabe warrior gear. I am trained to kill, I am out of shape but I train hard at the range once a month (hey these toys are pricey I need to cut on the target ammo).

  21. I don’t blame the cops, they have families and they want to enjoy some sort of normal American life every once in a while. They already have to deal with so much insanity on a normal day at work why would they take any risk for all the trash protesting? Idiots want to fight with idiots so what? Let them deal with it.

    • I think the cops were just following orders. Still, they were used as tools by those in the city government who did not want the rally to take place. The Vice-Mayor of Charlottesville, Wes Bellamy, who was a major part of the planning and effort to prevent the rally, wears Black Panther Party t-shirts and backpacks to city meetings, and his past online postings seem to indicate he is as racist as anyone at the rally. His racism is just directed against whites.

  22. Whoever made the call to march white supremacists through a mass of AntiFA was not doing “the right thing to ensure public safety” by any measure. A public brawl was easily predicted and could have been avoided.

    It’s far past time to publicly label both AntiFA and the Proud Boys as terrorists. Political violence is terrorism and this is all they are interested in doing.

    • Its my understanding the proud boys (the real ones) werent even there.

      IWW needs to be declared a terror organization as well

  23. There was enough stupid to go around on all sides. All we needed was some idiot on either side to open fire. Those of us that had nothing to do with it would pay the price. One “racist” makes us all racist. One guy with the wrong flag, one killer driving a car into the crowd, one idiot with a firearm, would make us all terrorists. These types of things are set up by professionals, they know the probability for violence. They also know the odds are the government is going to come down on the side of the leftists. The left may not have a President in office this time, but they still own the government and the news media, they have been infiltrating it at all levels for decades. The states are divided, have been for years. The only way to bring it back is for the people to unite, regardless of race, religion, or national origin: Americans. Dammit we have been played against each other for too long. We do not live because of the government, we live in spite of it. We are responsible, we voted blindly for party, we just assumed “they” would govern in the best interests of the Nation. We have been wrong. Whatever it takes, we must right that wrong or perish as a Nation.

  24. Bull. They have plenty of 1033 equipment down there. White supremacist militias can’t compete with armored vehicles.

  25. Let’s see if the governor and the mayor get charged for dereliction of duty.
    Wait until everyone finds out this was premeditated.

  26. the militia is the only group it seems that are. not damn crazy! the rest of like black lives matter and those ANtfia punks are just out to make trouble and nothing else . They are all punks criminals and the worst part of our country. whining and complaining over ererything !!! I f they don”t like it go somewhere else!

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