Martin Hyde
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By Lee Williams

Recent revelations that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was maintaining and possibly even digitizing a list of more than 1 billion firearm transactions stretching back for decades galvanized Martin Hyde into action.

Born an Englishman but a U.S. citizen since 2006, Hyde knew the danger such lists pose. He’d seen how they had been misused in England, Australia and elsewhere.

“When a government has a list of the people who own guns, it almost always leads to confiscation,” Hyde said. “When I saw this, I knew the ATF had to go – it has to be abolished or broken up. Besides, no one makes a better case for abolishing the ATF than the ATF.”

A successful businessman in Sarasota, Hyde is challenging U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan in Florida’s District-16 Republican primary. Buchanan did not respond to messages seeking comment for this story.

The news of the ATF’s most recent misdeeds added another layer to Hyde’s unique messaging, but the odds are against the former professional British soccer player. Buchanan, R-Longboat Key, has held public office since 2006, and has outspent every opponent who has crossed his path.

U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan
U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara, File)

But for Hyde, the decision to primary the powerful incumbent was never about money, since he knew he would be outspent. It was about the Second Amendment, especially Buchanan’s vote on HR-8, the so-called Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021, which would nullify all state laws that allow private firearm sales.

“When I saw he was one of only eight Republicans to vote for HR-8, I knew I had to do something,” Hyde said. “I grew up in London without the right to keep and bear arms. Englishmen were never unarmed; we were disarmed by the government. Americans don’t understand what that’s like, thankfully. Our Second Amendment prohibits the government from disarming the people, and it needs to be protected – enshrined, if you will – and Vern’s vote on HR-8 could have taken a big chunk out of it.”

With an immigrant’s zeal, Hyde celebrates his newfound Second Amendment rights. He purchased an AR pistol and a SIG SAUER P320, and is a frequent shooter at several ranges. He picked up the fundamentals faster than most. Since he had never shot before, he had no bad habits. It was this enjoyment of his constitutional rights that led to his decision about the ATF.

Martin Hyde

“Why do we have a federal agency at contretemps with our rights? It makes no sense. When I am elected, I will do everything humanly possible to abolish the ATF,” Hyde said. “Look at their history: Ruby Ridge, Waco, Fast and Furious and now this list of a billion gun sales. In the business world, anyone with such a propensity to fail wouldn’t last six months.

“The ATF’s administrative duties could be scrapped or divided among other federal agencies. Do we really need armed federal agents on the lookout for unlicensed cigarette sellers or moonshiners? We don’t. I am sure I won’t be the only congressman who wants to scrap the ATF. However, before I can do anything, I need to get past Vern.”

Hyde’s take on the ATF is right, of course. Its leaders have always cared more about currying favor with politicians – especially the White House – and garnering good press than they do the constitutional rights of American citizens or even the sanctity of human life.

As a result, the Biden-Harris administration tried to weaponize the ATF by installing an ardent anti-gun activist, David Chipman, as director, until the gun-rights community balked and pressured the Senate to reject the toxic little man.

David Chipman

Hyde describes his campaign as “guerilla style.” His YouTube videos are powerful, plucky and at times hilarious. There’s a picture of him on the side of his campaign bus holding a “Let’s go Brandon” sign.

To run for office, he says in one of his videos, “You have to have a thick skin or you have to be thick. It’s not for everybody, but I’m having the best time of my life. The only thing that’s going to stop it is August 23, when we actually win, and when we send Buchanan back to his car dealership.”

Regardless of whether Hyde wins against the powerful incumbent, his campaign will continue to raise important Second Amendment issues that need to be addressed, such as his call to abolish the ATF. That itself is a public service. Buchanan, on the other hand, has always ran from his voting record, especially if guns are involved.


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This story is part of the Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project and is published here with their permission.


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  1. The ATF, and, frankly, the DOJ as a whole, is nothing more than organized crime. It all needs to go.

      • I’d prefer just a 5 year term of service followed by swift execution. Those buzzards go from gov service straight into the private sector so they just end up serving private sector DURING their gov service.

        Let them have 5 years of gov service and then off with their heads!

        (No I realise this isn’t possible, but come one ya’ll know I’m right)

        • Hey, we’re only wishing. My idea is to tie their personal assets to the economy when they’re elected. If the country’s doing well then they do well. If we’re not, then they lose all first. Sick of those F**kers making out like bandits while we suffer.

    • I would go further and suggest all government is now nothing more than thinly veiled organized crime. Everywhere. And has been for some time.

  2. “I grew up in London without the right to keep and bear arms. Englishmen were never unarmed; we were disarmed by the government ….”

    That’s true

    You need to consider the history of Europe or which the U.K. is part.

    Its was all composed of feudal states class society – kings, queens, lords, barons, etc… those classes vs the lower class peasants/serfs who served the feudal state. The state back then kept the peasants/serfs disarmed for a reason, to prevent armed uprisings against tyranny of the upper class feudal state. The feudal state kept standing armies they used to keep the peasants/serfs in line, there was always a threat of the “kings men” enforcing the “kings law” of putting down any rebellion’ish thing.

    We forward into modern day and take a close look at a people-disarmed Europe, and we still see the people being educated to serve the state and elements of the feudal system still in place, and the threat of the states standing armies still there ready to be used against the people to put down any rebellion’ish thing. And still with great class divisions even with royalty in some cases, and elements of the standing army used in elements of enforcing the states law. Its a diluted form of feudal state tryany that is still ingrained in the “governments” and disguised on the world stage as “freedom” for them. The difference in Europe for this “freedom” is its mostly a fake “freedom”, its the state that grants or allows most of those “freedoms” and the state can take them away when ever they wish just like the feudal states did way back and they are mostly not all an inherent natural right part of existence like they are in the U.S. under our constitution.

    The people in Europe are not disarmed to reduce crime. They are disarmed because the “feudal state” institutionalization ingrained in their governments is afraid the people would use arms to rise up against the institutional tyranny of their governments, which is why they keep elements of their standing armies trained and ready to suppress rebellion in their borders. The veiled threat of the standing armies of Europe keeps the people of Europe in line. And those that rebel are treated to a taste of that standing army, for a more obvious example, Ireland and the U.K. which is still a monarchy like it was in the feudal state condition of old.

    The feudal state condition is ingrained fully once again today in Europe. They aren’t really free, the feudal state institutionalization has trained generation after generation to get used to it and “serve the state” in exchange for their “governments” giving them the “rights” the government wants them to have, and they keep them disarmed to avoid armed rebellion and use the veiled threat of a standing army employment to put down any uprising against the feudal state institutionalization.

    • Yes.
      The operative word being “EnglishMEN”

      Limp wristed pantywaists such as AH are “English SUBJECTS”.

      They know it’s going to be a bad day if “Mums” not there to powder their balls in the morning.
      Just like the TTAG basement dwelling trolls. 🤔

      • You should look up their restrictions on as simple pocket knife to understand just how emasculated English-men really are.

      • That term, “English SUBJECTS”, its interesting you bring that up.

        In the U.K. the official use term for its citizens includes the concept of “subject” rather than citizen.

        It wasn’t until 1948 the U.K. started using the term ‘citizen’ officially but even then it was not “British Citizen” or “English Citizen” or “Citizen of the United Kingdom”. Instead in ‘The British Nationality Act 1948’ they redefined ‘British Subject’ as any citizen of the United Kingdom, its colonies, or other Commonwealth countries. The term ‘Commonwealth Citizen’ was first defined in this act to have the same meaning as ‘British Subject’ which meant that a ‘Commonwealth Citizen’ was still a ‘British Subject’ and not a ‘British Citizen” or ‘Citizen’.

        People in the U.K. were subjects, not citizens. In the U.S. people are citizens and not subjects. This too is part of the diluted form of feudal state tyranny that is still ingrained in the government and disguised on the world stage as “freedom” for them.

        Then we come forward in time from 1948 to ‘The British Nationality Act 1981’ where the term ‘British Subject’ was decreed to be no longer synonymous with ‘Commonwealth Citizen’ thus people in the U.K. then became not ‘British Subjects’ but rather (officially) ‘Commonwealth Citizen’ and in the common usage ‘Full British Citizen’ or just ‘British Citizen’ and for those who had not achieved full citizenship (with right of abode in the UK) these are ‘British Subjects’.

        This too is part of the diluted form of feudal state tyranny that is still ingrained in the government and disguised on the world stage as “freedom” for them. People in the U.K. are literally under the thumb of tyranny even if they are called ‘British Citizen’.

        • Well said, but there has to be an element of mass mind-control/indoctrination lingering into the modern 21st century British Empire that always puzzled me. Fuedal systems and even their later RRousseau/Hegel/Marxist attempts at Utopian evolutions are simply obsoletely incongruous in any New AGE Free Market Capitalist Society because by now the English Subjects should have had an epiphany of enlightenment and turned it all around? After all, they’re about as ‘Westernized’ as you could otherwise get while being enslaved? Yet, you see them pouring out of their pubs raising their pints of ale mugs and cheering and waving and almost prostrating themselves as they crowd over the sidewalks every time the Queen makes a public appearance anywhere. No “‘Let’s Go Brandette’ chants over there? Same with Australia.

  3. If we have to actually import real constitutionalists, so be it!! Wish I could vote in Florida.

    • I’m embarrassed to say I’ve been voting for Vern for almost his whole political career. I voted for the the R. Maybe he will get voted out, but if he still wins the primary, I’m not voting for the D!

  4. It’s a view of Gun Control from a Brit who lived it. Imagine what the view of Gun Control was for Jews in nazi Germany or how the view of Gun Control was for Freed Slaves in America. If an individual cannot define Gun Control by its history then in this fight for Freedom they are not worth spit.

  5. I just think it’s ironic that we have an Englishman here defending our 2A rights against our fellow U.S. citizens.

      • Yep, Walter, starting with MinorIQ, dacian the stupid, and our nameless, brainless troll. Fortunately, they are far more stupid and inept than they could ever be anything approaching dangerous.

    • Gadsden,

      That is part of the irony – the idiots on the Left (yep, MinorIQ, dacian the stupid, and nameless, brainless troll, we’re lookin’ at YOUR sorry asses) constantly accuse us of “hating immigrants”, overlooking the fact that we are ALL descended from immigrants (yep, even the “Native Americans”). What conservatives and libertarians don’t wish to be subjected to is useless, law-breaking rent seekers, who have no intention of assimilating, coming in to suck off the teat of the insane social welfare state our Leftist colleagues have saddled us with (dacian the stupid, in particular, is terrified that he might have to get a job and move out of his mommy’s basement).

      I’d rather have a thousand immigrants like Hyde than one Albert Hall. Being American is a state of mind, not a nationality or an ethnicity. Hyda has it; Hall doesn’t.

  6. ya ya ya. The ‘pubs always say that, right up until they take take office. Then all the promises they make to the gun owners of America go right out the window.

    • Kyle,

      Historically, you are not wrong. There are a FEW exceptions, but your generalization proves true far more often than it proves false.

  7. I don’t often smile when reading statements from campaigning politicians, but I like this guy’s presentation. If he would be faithful to do what he says if he were to be elected….cool, but I’m way past believing any politician.

  8. Well, there’s my first comment stuck in moderation. I can’t think of a single word that would have triggered any review. Is it a random process?

  9. It’s funny that former residents of the U.K. Russia, Australia, Cuba know what many Americans don’t. You are only a citizen if you own guns, otherwise you are just a subject.

  10. Here we have a Brit speaking up for gun tights, to the north Canadians are in revolt against an overreaching government, while the US is being run by communists and Karens.

    Welcome to Bizarro World.

    • Ralph, we have all had it too easy for too long, you guys in the US possibly more so in that you have a proper Constitution, the finest document yet written, to shield yourselves from the worst of gov overreach. It’s long past time some serious shtf somewhere as we have become far too complacent in setting things straight, and there’s a lotta ‘things’ going down out there right now. Cheers from the Honkening.

  11. Candidate Hyde is correct about RINO Buchanan. Mr. Buchanan is establishment through and through.
    Good luck, Mr. Hyde!

  12. Its ironic; At one time people in our country were British subjects, we had a revolution and fought for our rights paying the price in blood and became America citizens – but now yet another British subject becomes an American citizen and (by running for office) fights for those rights again.

    Oh the irony.

  13. ATF, FBI, DOJ, Homeland Security are no longer trustworthy agencies of justice and should be treated as the enemy at all times. They violate their Constitutional Oaths on a regular basis without even so much as an afterthought. They will violate your rights and shoot you dead in an instant and get away with it. If they come to your home contact local police immediately for protection and if they invade fight for your life for that is precisely what you will have to do rather than to be persecuted for the rest of your life. They have declared war on American Conservatives in particular and if necessary once they start it force must be met with force. You need to decide whether your freedom is worth fighting for.

    • drprato,

      You are not wrong, but you forgot IRS, DoE, HHS, CDC, and thousands of other “alphabet soup” rent seekers who infest our bloated government. A government agency is, by definition, a sinecure for incompetents who are unable to perform adequately to maintain employment in the private sector.

  14. I’ve said it before and I’ll said it again, the ATF has been the bloodiest Federal agency since their early days. Beginning with the raid on Ken Ballew in 1971. If you are unaware of the ATFs first grotesque screw-up, Google “Ken Ballew”.

    So yeah, I agree, end the ATF as a Federal agency.

    On the other hand I have only heard good things about their explosives scientists and techs. So take those people out of the ATF. Put them under the FBI as civilian technical staff. No badges, no guns, no police authority. That expertise is useful but is not needed as LEOs. So take away the LEO part of it.

    The rest of the ATF should simply be “Bye bye, go find other employment outside of the government sector”.

  15. Well that’s all fine and dandy but getting rid of the BATFE would be as easy as getting rid of the IRS or FBI.
    Ain’t gonna happen, no way is the fed gov getting rid of its hit squad.

    • I agree it is very unlikely. That said, far more likely than getting rid of those other agencies.

  16. I’m watching this with much interest.
    I also will repeat the obvious but often overlooked:
    Abolish The ATFingE -I want that… but we absolutely HAVE to make it concurrent with a great deal of repeals -there is an ENORMOUS part of the US Code that would be greatly improved by it’s REPEAL and replacement with NOTHING.
    As long as US 18$922 is there,there will always be another federal agency that will either be repurposed and tasked with it’s enforcement or a Shiny New Agency Will Be The New And Improved Polished Turd In The Punchbowl.
    We have to attack it all-root and branch -and go to the very basis of our current problems:
    We’ve allowed these ongoing and worsening Infringements by our acceptance of what is often referred to as ” reasonable”

  17. Pretty sad when a former Brit Subject has to remind US citizens of how easily we can lose our rights.
    BATF needs to go back to what they were to start with. Tax collectors on Federal Excise taxes on booze and cigarettes. Or be disbanded. The FBI already handles investigations, and the US Marshals office handles warrants and arrests. Fully half of the alphabet soup agencies could be disbanded or consolidated, and the country would run just as well or better. With the added bonus of at least some Federal employees actually doing their jobs and working. Instead of sending letters and E-mails to justify their jobs and budgets.

  18. Hire some Hackers to turn the database to mush and then firebomb the building.
    Enough of this BS already.

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