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Reverend Dave Hill (left) and gun guy (courtesy

Well, we know what Oberlin, Ohio reverend David Hill’s afraid of: open carry demonstrators. “Last September the City of Oberlin was the target of open-carry demonstrations,” Hill begins at, deliberately using the word “target” to pour gasoline on troubled waters. “Folks from out of town arrived brandishing their weapons in protest of Oberlin’s local ordinances that prohibited firearms in its parks.” Out-of-towners! Brandishing weapons! Hide your children! And lo, it did come to pass . . .

A usually busy playground was oddly silent except for a couple of kids associated with the gun folks. I watched as a father strapped some sort of gun to a kid’s thigh and then sent him off to play on the swing.

WHAT? An open carry demonstrator strapped a real gun to a kid’s thigh and sent him off to play? Clearly, not. Clearly, Reverend Hill is a troublemaker of the worst sort: the kind who uses half-truths and innuendo to smear the motives and actions of those who don’t share his distaste for Americans’ exercising their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms.

A young mother carried around her infant, her handgun openly displayed on her hip just beneath the baby. Other folks with ammunition clips and side arms milled around nearby. It was like a scene out of a post-apocalypse, sci-fi movie where danger lurks around every corner, law enforcement no longer exists, and common life has returned to the days of the Wild West.

Why, that infant could reach down and discharge that firearm! Or, you know, not. As for open carry signaling the end of the world, Arizonans might beg to differ (although it is hot as Hell there this time of year).

All this fuss is not about hunting or target shooting; it is about carrying guns in public as a means of self-defense. Which raises the question: what are these folks so afraid of? Statistically, they place themselves at far greater risk simply getting behind the wheel of a car than anything they are likely to encounter at a Starbucks or Target store . . .

At its heart, the debate over open-carry laws has little to do with Second Amendment rights. It is about the sort of society we wish to bring about and the world in which we wish to live.

Father Hill fails to realize that the Founding Fathers didn’t write the Second Amendment to protect Americans’ ability (right?) to hunt game, punch paper or defend themselves against criminals (although all of those endeavors are givens). They crafted and enacted the Second Amendment as a bulwark against tyranny. Tyranny being a feature of government that tends to obliterate religious freedom and, in most cases, all those who place God before Mammon.

To answer Reverend Hill’s question, open carry advocates demonstrate because they’re afraid of losing their gun rights – and all that would entail. Specifically, the loss of all their other God-given or natural rights. Their right to free speech. Their right to assembly. And again, their right to worship in a time, place and manner of their choosing.

What I glimpsed that Saturday in September was a society where all citizens will be forced to “pack heat”; a world where I will need to strap a bullet-proof vest on my granddaughter before she goes out to play. It is a world mastered by fear and armed to the teeth. The prophet’s vision of beating swords into plowshares, Jesus’ blessing of the peacemakers and God’s command to love our neighbor offer a different vision of community based upon mutual care and trust. The choice is ours.

Do we wish to enmesh ourselves in an ever escalating domestic arms race or can we “lay down our swords and shields” in order to live together in peace.

Open carry demonstrators don’t want to force anyone to “pack heat.” They are not a danger in and of themselves; fellow citizens have no need to tool-up in their presence. As witnessed by the fact that nothing dangerous happened that warm September day – save an anti-gun agitprop photo op for a pro-disarmament man of the cloth.

As for the Rev’s contention that open carry eliminates the possible of mutual care and trust with in a community, I’m confused. Surely open carry demonstrators are demonstrating that they care for their community in the same way that a good shepherd protects his flock against wolves. Armed.

How scary is that, and to whom, exactly?

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  1. Oberlin is, of course, a radically liberal enclave in the heart of conservative Ohio farm country. But let’s leave that aside: not noted in the article is that Oberlin’s ordinance is contrary to state law. As to fears, they are easy to define. The gun bearers fear the loss of rights and liberty; the good reverend fears the loss of a utopian world view that clashes with reality. Peaceful co-existence could be a preferable state of affairs, but just look around the world today and tell me where you find anything approaching this ideal. You won’t. It dos not exist, and has never existed. One must necessarily question, given the nature of the human animal, if it ever will.

    • In the states with which I am familiar, state law trumps local town or city ordinances. Is that the case in Ohio? If so, has someone in Oberlin been arrested for open carry and sued for redress, using the state law as support?

      Just for a little history about Oberlin….perhaps the greatest revivalist in U.S. history–Rev. Charles G. Finney, was president of Oberlin College (now university) during the mid 1800s. During that time, Finney and his colleagues often wore firearms, as was the normal trend of the time.

        • Yes, and this open carry demonstration was part of the pressure put on Oberlin to repeal its invalid ordinance. The faculty of the university were of course outraged.

        • Aye.

          (I’m sometimes part of the discussions regarding OC gatherings in Ohio and I was aware of the chit-chat about it and walks, planned and unplanned. I was unable to attend any of the Oberlin functions this year.)

      • State law always trumps local ordinances, because municipalities, like counties, are political subdivisions of the state. However, the issue is what aspects of firearms activity the state elects to cover or delegate. I can’t think of a single state that where municipalities don’t have jurisdiction over, say, discharge of a firearm. However, carrying, transporting, purchasing/selling, are usually state law-governed. Open carrying…….that’s a tossup. Where it’s even allowed at all, sometimes it’s statewide. Some places, like Missouri, if I recall correctly, open carry is up to the cities. So it all just depends.

  2. Maybe the good reverend would like to explain why it was acceptable for Peter to pack a sword in the garden of Gethsemane when Jesus physically at hand (John 18:10) and yet we are to lay down are arms and trust in our fellow sinner?

  3. The good reverend has it wrong. The “beating swords into plowshares” was never a command; it was to show that God would ultimately bring peace. As for the reverse, beating plowshares into swords, it is a command:

    Joel 3:9-11 (NIV)

    9 Proclaim this among the nations:
    Prepare for war!
    Rouse the warriors!
    Let all the fighting men draw near and attack.
    10 Beat your plowshares into swords
    and your pruning hooks into spears.
    Let the weakling say,
    “I am strong!”
    11 Come quickly, all you nations from every side,
    and assemble there.

    Bring down your warriors, Lord!

    There are two other instances of beating swords into plowshares (Isaiah 2:3-5, Micah 4:2-4) which speak prophetically of God’s grace and the peace after establishing His kingdom on earth.

    • I was wondering if someone was going to mention the beating of plowshares into swords in the comments section. That seems to be something the people who talk of beating swords into plowshares seem to always neglect to mention.

  4. “It was like a scene out of a post-apocalypse, sci-fi movie where danger lurks around every corner, law enforcement no longer exists, and common life has returned to the days of the Wild West.”

    Was anyone being threatened? Assaulted? Robbed? Duels at high noon? No? Hmmmmm.

    “Which raises the question: what are these folks so afraid of?”

    Nothing at all, save losing the capability to live without fear. That’s the point.

    “What I glimpsed that Saturday in September was a society where all citizens will be forced to “pack heat””

    Doesn’t sound so bad, if only a hyperbolic and ignorant reverend perhaps got his knickers in a twist over it, and nobody got threatened or hurt.

    • The Reverend fears making a choice. In his utopian world, a Higher Authority makes all of the decisions for him and everyone else; all he and his followers need do is obey and comply. Remove that authority (becoming a free individual as opposed to a subject or slave) and he is faced with choices that he must make for himself.

      I suspect he relishes the role of being the Higher Authority, rather than than of free citizen.

  5. It’s not fear, Reverend, it’s a simple risk analysis.
    The cost of carrying a gun is small.
    The cost of being unarmed when the random lunatic strikes could be your life.

    I don’t carry a gun to shoot people, I carry it as insurance.

    My gun is my last recourse against a low-risk/high-cost event.

  6. Hmm, it makes you wonder why the IRS is not there threatening to take away the tax exempt status of his church. Oh wait, he is loyal to the Obama Regime, so it is probably okay. Is he one of those fake reverends who has no loyalty to their purported religious beliefs except where it supports their insatiable lust for power? I think so. I cannot express in words how much these fake reverends disgust me.

    • Maybe that’s why the repost! Just came across the news that the IRS has agreed to begin investigating churches with political activities (which are expressly forbidden), possibly to revoke tax exempt status. THAT will cut down on this kind of mindless interference with perfectly peaceful demonstrations!

      He may be afraid of pedestrians carrying guns, but I guarantee he would be terrified at the idea of not only paying taxes but keeping the records needed to file a return. He would shut up real quick.

  7. As the good reverend amply demonstrates, extremist antis’ appear only able to think in…’Extremes’.

  8. There’s gonna be an Open Carry Kiss-In here in Phoenix, put on by the Pink Pistols. That’ll be a neat twist on Open Carry, I think.

    • Sounds amusing. I’m straight, but it’s always good to meet new people on the fringe of the 2a movement.

  9. “Which raises the question: what are these folks so afraid of?”

    With this pistol on my hip, nothing now.

  10. With how they throw about the words “Wild West” you’d think it’s as bad as the Dark Ages.

    That is, unless of course, you know anything at all about the “Wild West”.

    • And the Dark Ages. A very violent time, and they did it with edged weapons and bludgeoning weapons, no firearms. History got much less violent when firearms came into military use. And even less violent when firearms became common in civilian use also.

  11. Oberlin is Northeast Ohio’s San Francisco – a progressive utopia. The only time I go there is when I am being paid large sums of money.

    • Lucky you. When my daughter went there (which she chose because of its number one ranking among colleges), it was the other way around.

  12. It seems to me that some of the worst bullsh1t I’ve ever heard in my lifetime came from people who had “Prof.” or “Rev.” in front of their actual names.

    • Yeah, it’s a bit ironic, given their supposed mandate. The title “reverend” means “worthy to be revered.” They’re just men, they’re certainly not worthy of that.

    • “Expertise in one field does not carry over to other fields, but experts often think so. The narrower their field of knowledge, the more likely they are to think so.” – Robert A. Heinlein

  13. Let’s not forget the tyranny of the criminal element who prey upon innocents and the weak. Open carry puts them on notice that there are those in our society who are committed to ending their predations and have the will and means to do so.

  14. I looked up this Reverend Hill`s church. Its a left wing big government supporting place trying to disguise itself as a Christian church. They are preaching the gospel of social justice and government.

        • The truth about guns included the morality and ethics of guns, when and where their use is appropriate, and who’empowered as arbiter of such, yes or no?

          Well, when this reverend or the pope injects himself into such matters, THEY just defined themselves as integral to the topic. So my comment was both on topic and certainly called for.

          You may take your disgruntled butt back to the end of the line where you can play self-styled censorship satrap all by your lonesome. Or invite the rights-snatching reverend and pope to join you. Either way, you can’t silence or intimidate me any more than you can take my firearms. You’re dismissed.

  15. If the Rev wants to see a scene out of a post-apocalypse, sci-fi movie where danger lurks around every corner, then that describes L.A. and Boston last year during their massive manhunts. Far from being a time when law enforcement no longer exists, it’s a time when law enforcement is ubiquitous.

    It’s a time when massive, well funded and equipped, and highly organized legions of troopers impose their will on defenseless individuals at every opportunity. The only antidote to which is the righteous exercise by peace-loving people of their God-given right to self-defense. It is that which preserves one’s liberty, enables his dignity, and instills in him the respect for others that he expects of them.

    • And do not ever forget that each of those police riots ended in either a successful execution or a botched execution of the victim by the police, sans the arrest and trial due the victims.

      Preach on that, Reverend Hill.

      • You know, you’re right about that. You reminded just now of the LAPD opening up on that truck with the two ladies, I believe, delivering newspapers. Can you even imagine some reckless concealed carrier busting caps willy nilly like that? Unbelievable.

  16. Not too hot here in AZ, monsoon season.
    This reverand from Ohio is wrong on so many levels its comical, I personally knew of a clergyman that regularly carried a pistol with him.

    • It’s 107 here now. Don’t know what you mean by “not too hot.” Seems plenty hot to me. lol

      • Many will say, “Yeah, but it’s a dry heat.”
        To which I reply, “Yeah, and it’s quite dry on the surface of the sun, too.”

  17. Hey where’s our favorite reverend to offer a rebuttal? Check out his Benelli shotgun videos.

  18. “Those who beat their swords into plowshares…..will end up plowing for those who didn’t” – I don’t know who to credit for this, but it is appropriate!

  19. I love how these types try to play both ends of the threat spectrum at the same time. He cant say society is safe in one breath and then say it isn’t in the next. Unless he’s the type that thinks normal people turn into zombies once they strap up.

  20. “That’s problem with fear – it’s often irrational. It’s also contagious…”

    It seems that Rev. Hill possesses quite a bit of fear, and is not shy about dispensing it.

  21. “…can we “lay down our swords and shields” in order to live together in peace?”

    Tell you what, Rev. You march your happy ass over to Cleveland’s east side and talk to the gang-bangers and drug dealers about handing over their weapons. After you’ve got them disarmed, then you can go on a tour of all the other major metropolitan areas of the country, disarming the criminals and violent thugs. Eventually, you can worry about the law-abiding folks, but let’s start with the actual source of the problem first, okay?

  22. What are you afraid of?

    1. Random violence.

    2. Do you watch the news?

    3. Gun grabbing preachers and politicians.

  23. “Jesus blessing of Peacemakers”……….

    Still laughing at the Rev saying that, and what popped in my head!!

  24. the Founding Fathers didn’t write the Second Amendment to protect Americans’ ability (right?) to hunt game, punch paper or defend themselves against criminals (although all of those endeavors are givens).

    Thank you! It wasn’t even about ordinary crime.

  25. IIRC, carrying concealed in Oberlin could unwittingly land someone in jail. It’s difficult to tell what’s campus and what’s not. Again IIRC, we can’t conceal on campus. Open carry is fine outside of the buildings. So, part of the problem lies with the fact that they’ve made exercising the privilege (concealed) risky so the right (open) is the legally safer option.

  26. Except there was no need for an OC demonstration, seeing how Ohio has preemption on on gun laws and the first lawsuit would cause the Ohio Supreme Court to bitchslap the city council members so hard that their great grandchildren will feel it.

    • There has to be some sort of standing to successfully file suit. Just having ordinances on the books isn’t enough. They have to actually enforce it. Additionally, there is the high likelihood of a lack in media coverage unless there is an actual OCer walking. Preferable, a lot of people become educated to the legality of OC and pre-emption so that the improper laws and regulations get stricken from the books. Oberlin isn’t the only place in Ohio with such illegal ordinances. Often times, the wheels of city councils and park boards turn slowly or not at all without some pressure.

  27. I guess the Talking Points Memo has reached the community organizers in the UCC, no surprise given its Oberlin, home of Oberlin College, which brags on its Progressive history.

    Reverend Dave doesnt appear to be published elsewhere, and his linkedin profile is pretty thin-
    so I suspect he got pushed into joining the faux “war on wimmen” meme, that is so obviously being flogged about again in the usual sewers on the left, and the progtard faux ngos, and their enablers in StateRunMedia, to distract the LIV and true believers, for 2014, so no one looks at how things have actually been working out, on the progressive agenda, including gun rights.

    So, for his sake, and any rational Christians left in his congregation in the self-referential bubble that is Oberlin – heres my take, and feel free to reply.

    Dave, I hope it was worth it. You threw away objectivity, truth, understanding, and played upon stale and pathetic over-the-top “post apocalyptic” generalizations about these “folks from out of town”, who were simply peacefully educating other citizens, on the vote by the city, the state, and the feds on 2a rights- to self defense as a god-given natural right.

    I frankly dont see how this fits the “global diversity, peacemaking, acceptance of all” language in the UCC charter or your mission statement on your own congregations website- but hey-

    if its good for Dave and Oberlin UCC to worship at the alter of Progressivism v2.0, then so be it.

    As a minister you played on the fears of the ignorant, when you could have informed, and inflamed fears when you could have calmed them. Gotta break a few eggs to make an omelette, as they said in the old Soviet Union, the epitome of Progressive v1.0. Look how that worked out for the religious folks, by the way. Read Solzhenitzen, Dave, if you have questions.

    Worse, and to be perfectly blunt, your deliberate mischaracterizations mght even be said to rise to lies, even more sad to see in a Yale graduate, and a 20 year man of the cloth. Smearing a whole group of “other folks from out of town” is the kind of thing we saw in Europe, during the Crusades, or Vichy France, where Protestants were happy to dime out their Jewish neighbors, to send them off to the camps and ovens.

    You are probably a good guy doing what you think is right, but honestly- while we laugh at this kind of nitwittery and ignorant hypocrisy in Rolling Stone, Mother Jones, and even the New York Times, when it comes from someone representing UCC, speaking for God- well,

    this is a moral failure, and NOT “what would Jesus have done…”. Its certainly not social justice, its just stupid sordid politics of the already failing kind…

    Who was that other pastor- Martin Niemoller?

  28. As a fellow man of the cloth I feel that this guy is just trying to sow fear in order to secure or enthrall his clerical power base. Not for the good of the community. Guys like this burned witches, accused people of heresy, and stoned their own mothers. Of course, I will forgive…

    But I won’t quit carrying either!

  29. “What I glimpsed that Saturday in September was a society where all citizens will be forced to “pack heat”; a world where I will need to strap a bullet-proof vest on my granddaughter before she goes out to play. It is a world mastered by fear and armed to the teeth.”

    Oh, you mean like Chicago? A Democrat-run city for 50+ years with stringent anti-gun laws? And one of the highest murder rates in the country?

  30. Oberlin. Not surprised there. Small liberal college town filled with people who have their heads shoved up their asses.

    UCC, the denomination that Obama and his buddy Rev. Jeremiah Wright are a part of. Not surprised there either. Their rabidly liberal policies and their forcing them on congregations even though they are supposed to be independent and not have to follow the policies of the national body (Want funds or assistance from the national body? Better do what we tell you or you won’t get any.) have caused them to lose membership ,including myself in 2007 over the past few decades. Being a former member, I can say for certain that in the last 20 years it has turned into more of a progressive social club than a church.

  31. Sorry, Mr.* Hill, but you lost me at “Brandished”.

    And then your blatant hoplophobia (“targeted”, comic lack of knowledge of firearm terminology, etc.) gave way to an obvious lie (a parent strapped a real, live gun to the thigh of a child? You really expect us to believe that?).

    You, Mr.* Hill, are the epitome of a modern-day Pharisee.

    * I refuse to confer the title of “reverend” upon any human. God alone is to be revered in name and title.

  32. The good Reverend Hill FORGOT to mention that my wife was BREASTFEEDING our son while walking around armed… and, miracle of miracles, the gun didn’t jump from its holster and injure mother or child!

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