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Those who push the cause of citizen disarmament work hard to demonize guns. They try to make the public display of arms a shameful thing, something that “decent” people simply don’t condone. And they’ve had a considerable amount of success. As recently as the 1950s people carried rifles and shotguns in New York City without so much as a sideways glance. In liberal fascists’ version of reality, the public display of firearms is perfectly acceptable, even laudable, as long as the person with the weapon is wearing a uniform, indicating they’re an agent of the state. But trade the uniform for ordinary clothing and the that open display becomes cause for alarm because…shut up . . .

In Ohio recently, the open display of a gun led to potentially dangerous consequences that might yet have legal fallout. From

ADELPHI, Ohio (WTVN) –Tellers inside the Kingston National Bank branch in Adelphi feared the worst when they saw a group of men get out of their cars and start pulling guns out of the vehicles. 

The employees initiated emergency procedures, locked the bank down and called the Ross County Sheriff’s Office.

After a few minutes, the men outside the bank got back in their cars and left, but bank workers got a good description of the vehicles, along with their tag numbers.

Sheriff deputies from two counties located and stopped the vehicles, likely with tactical felony stops, which entail a certain degree of risk for the occupants. It was subsequently determined that the men were engaged in a simple trade, the likes of which occurs thousands of times every day. They simply had the bad luck to conduct their transaction within sight of nervous bank tellers.

Sheriff George Lavender Jr. said that he will present the case to the county prosecutor for a possible charge of “inciting panic.” This is political correctness run amok. There’s no constitutional right not to be offended and the reason is clear to anyone with two brain cells to rub together. A “right” to not be offended is a license for the government to shut down any activity or speech that it wants to, because the authorities can always find someone who’s offended by something.

The trick is in having control of the old media and the government. The old media works hard to tell people what they should be offended by or afraid of. And they publicize their subsequent disapproval of those actions. Then the government authorities need only pick those things that they disapprove of to prosecute. It is the very definition of tyranny.

How could these men who were engaging in legal commerce know they were being observed by nervous bank tellers behind the anonymity of reflective glass? They couldn’t, and even so, it should not matter. Legal activities should never be prosecuted because someone else is frightened or offended. The men never acted in a threatening or aggressive manner. And if they’d been wearing uniforms at the time, no call would have been made.

The incident further reinforces the conditioning that the public display of firearms is only acceptable when it’s done by our civic masters in uniform.

©2013 by Dean Weingarten of the Gun Watch Blog: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

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    • That’s what should happen. We need to stop rewarding people with a pat on the back for stupidity. The teller jumped to conclusions and panicked without assessing the situation.

      • Sue the teller for defamation of character for implying the two were criminals and engaged in criminal activity. But that won’t happen. If Orwell has taught us anything, its that the State will always reward snitches, even when they are wrong, because its politically expedient to do so.

    • should also be handed the bill for the expense incurred mobilizing the cops and pursuing the men for no good reason.

      Seems to me leftists have conditioned people to act before they think, to react to emotions instead of facts. There’s nothing wrong with being vigilant and ready to act in case something bad happens. This is not the same as reacting in panic to people that seem calm and are not threatening you or the place you are at just because of an object. Anyone that reacts that way should think about what is triggering their irrational and emotional response.

  1. There should be a charge of “inciting panic”. Do they know which bank teller to charge?

    Edit: Wow, same thought a minute apart.

  2. I don’t know the geography of where these law-abiding citizens were in relation to the bank, but the many times I have done a face-to-face transfer, I make sure to choose: 1) an open, public area that is 2) far from the entrance to a business. Usually a shopping center parking lot works well. (1) is for my safety and (2) is to avoid situations like this. We have the society we have, not the one we’d like to have.

    • Same here. While I think Publix prohibits it on their parking lots (in some states…just heard this second hand), i have done plenty f2f in shopping plazas.

      When possible, I do a f2f in the parking lot of a gun store. nobody is going to wonder about seeing guns and if the f2f should go bad, there is a good chance I would have another armed person to come and help, as well as security cams.
      …(never had a F2F go bad, or even be anything close to shady, just friendly and honest people),

      • “Worst” situation I had was a fellow buying a .22 off me. He pulls out his carry gun — a massive SIG P226 X-Five in stainless — to impress me. Seeing as how we were a few feet away from a glassed-in diner, I nodded quickly so he would put it away.

      • “When possible, I do a f2f in the parking lot of a gun store.”

        This was my first thought, also. How can what seems so obvious have escaped the attention of those guys?

  3. “Those who push the cause of citizen disarmament work hard to demonize guns. They try to make the public display of arms a shameful thing, something that “decent” people simply don’t condone. And they’ve had a considerable amount of success.”

    Especially on this blog

  4. in way i understand how a “bank teller” would be alarmed. banks get robbed daily and tellers manager and so get shot at times, i get that. if they were not heading into the bank or store why act like that. keep a vigil eye on them see them leave and go about your day, just that simple. as for the sheriff and prosecutor look to see if they can file charges. NO they did a legal sale or trade. now if the buyer was a felon look at charges to him or her in possession of a firearm. thats about it. the tell should also be hit with charges for misuse of public resources. food for thought

    • I don’t fault them (too much) for going into a temporary lock-down state, but once the men left that should have been the end of it.

      • That’s pretty much my take. I don’t even fault them too much for calling the cops so soon, given typical response times. However, the cops should not have pursued it further once they determined that there was no threat to the bank (and no cause to suspect a crime had been committed).

    • The tellers could have also done quick brass checks. The manager should have taken the AR off safe and discreetly covered the door.

      • Yep, in an alternate universe, that would have been the response; L.Neil Smith, a Liberterian, wrote some very good stories on this idea in the series of the “Probability Broach”.

  5. I was in the banking field for 9 years, a few of them on front line operations in a non open carry state. Without being there to see how it actually played out, I can’t honestly say I would not have done the same thing. At very least I would have had my finger on the button, for the first sign they were entering the bank with drawn guns.

    That said, trying to charge these guys with inciting panic to BS. They might have been a little foolish to swap guns in a bank parking lot (where they would be seen, at least by a security camera), if they were not engaging in an illegal trade, they should not be charged.

    • Perhaps the reason they chose that location was the presence of the security cameras. That way if the deal went south there would be a way to ID the bad actor.
      When I do a deal I go to my LGS because I have armed backup.

    • I thought the same thing. Why not observe and hit the panic button if they actually started into the bank still armed. If they were robbers and an alarm went off as soon as they touched the door, it’s likely they would have bolted.

  6. “Sheriff George Lavender Jr. said that he will present the case to the county prosecutor for a possible charge of ‘inciting panic.'”

    I wonder if the Sheriff knows that their felony stop was illegal, that they can face prosecution for deprivation of civil rights under color of law, and therefore is trying to float the “inciting panic” charges as a countermeasure. He almost has to charge the men with something or else he has absolutely no leg to stand on whatsoever for the felony stop.

    Once again, this is an example that shows we need to overhaul our “probable cause” and “reasonable suspicion” standards.

    • Yeah, we do. Because as it stands now “probable cause” means “the officer asked to search your vehicle and said no, so you’re probably up to something”. “Reasonable suspicion” means “the officer thinks you’re suspicious, and everything he thinks is reasonable”. Two terms so intentionally vague that the cops can use them to do pretty much whatever they want.

      • Officers of course can simply assert they “smell marijuana” and get probable cause that way–even if the camera is recording and shows you were prefectly reasonable and acting sober.

      • So, invoking your rights under the 4th Amendment and refusing a search becomes probable cause now (except exigent circumstances and pre-impound inventory searches have pretty well decimated stopping searches). And when you get to the station, because the officer arrested you on BS-PC, and wants you to make a statement, you invoke Miranda v. Arizona? Officer’s report indicates, “Suspect was uncooperative.” Same shit; different day… :sigh:

  7. Ross county is just north of the county where I grew up. Southern Ohioans are sensible people and overwhelmingly pro-gun. Even if the DA doesn’t nolle pros this, I seriously doubt any Ross county jury would convict.
    Now Cleveland would be a different matter. Them folks is weird !

  8. So we have lost our freedom for the common good? WHY? If I want to walk to a friends house down the block to show him my new firearm ect. I should be able to do that without having to worry about someone calling the cops on me because they have been conditioned to fear the tools I have in my hand. Thats what it has come to and CAN and SHOULD aren’t in the argument as much as they once were. In some places you can now go to JAIL for having 10 bullets on your person while 9 is still ok. WAKE UP! This is about control of willing subjects not safety. If your ok with people fearing tools like firearms then your ok with the government conditioning people to fear anything. Slowly our freedoms are being given away by sensible people allowing this mindset. NEXT they may make our grandchildren fear transportation that uses toxic fossil fuel… oh wait they are working on that now. If we don’t act now all were going to hear is “SHUT UP and GET ON THE TRAIN!” 🙁

  9. The fears of some do not trump the rights of others and just because someone calls the police does not constitute illegal activity by another.

    I think a judge made such a ruling on a case of legal open carry but I can’t find it.
    If anyone knows please tell.

    This can be attributed to the constant commercials stating “if you see something say something” fear mongering being promoted lately.

  10. Seems like folks are getting more freaked out about open display of weapons than open display by a flasher.

    I remember seeing racked shotguns/riffles in parked pickup trucks outside the Feed Store in small town in Texas, where I grew up. No one locked vehicles back then, and no one took notice.

    Shame we have become so sissified since then.

    • I remember them in my HS parking lot and nobody ever called the cops or got hurt. Most we’re in teacher/staff vehicles but some of the seniors carried in their trucks.

  11. No one should freak out at the sight of citizen with a gun anymore than they do at the sight of:

    A cop with a gun
    A soldier with a gun
    A hunter with a gun*
    A hiker with a gun*
    An actor with a gun
    A citizen at a range with a gun

    All of those scenarios are psychologically acceptable even to most antis. They might not like it, but they understand that it’s no reason to go all 9-1-1y.

    We just have to make clear that there is no costume, woods, movie camera or target stand prerequisite to the legality, appropriateness and Constitutionality of possessing a firearm.

    I have no interest in making OC likable to them (you really can’t, anyway) but they have to learn that it’s LEGAL and that the correct response is to cry about it on the internet, NOT to call 5-O.

    This is why I’m for open carry whenever and where ever possible. It can and will eventually educate these people on the LEGALITY and COMMONNESS of it.

    Even that foul-mouthed Wonkette blogger who spewed bile and seethed about the AZ airport open carry guy got the point. Did she hate it? Very much. But she also learned that it’s 100% legal (she really hated that part too, lol).

    And that’s all I really want: For these hoplophobes to know that however strong their irrational fear of guns might be, their tantrums do not supercede our rights.

    *People don’t generally freak out if the hunter/hiker is in the field.

    • Problem is they try to ban everything they personally don’t like. That Wonkette blogger is a hardcore liberal, and votes in anit-gun politicians every opportunity she gets. They pass laws restricting firearm ownership so she can “feel” safe.

    • If I wasn’t a black man, I would open carry. But given the history of police brutality and shooting unarmed black men, I stay concealed everywhere it is legal in my state.

  12. I was going through the drive thru at one of our fine local dinning establishments just the other day when I happened to notice two gentlemen conducting an exchange of a scoped rifle for money (one of which was quasi-open carrying a Glock pistol) in the parking lot. While I waited for my order I watched them conclude their business both enter their respective trucks and drive away.

    All this occurred in a parking lot crowed with a dinner time crowd and in full view of the restaurants staff including two school bus load of students on what I can only guess was a middle school trip.

    Not a single f*&k was given.

    I love my home state of West Virginia.

  13. I met a man from an armslist deal in the parking lot of Harbor Frieght to sell a Mossburg .22WMR. We did the deal very quickly and discreetly. We continued to stand around shooting the shit (verbally). Someone notified the police that there were men in the parking lot with GUNS :0!! Shortly thereafter we were surrounded by lawmen and women. We acted in a non-threatening manner and calmy waited for them to approach us. After some quick questions they actually apologized to us and told us to have a good night. We offered our ID’s and to have them inspect the weapon, they politely declined and left. Just thought I share that.

  14. This is the true essence of Terrorism. The state has conditioned the populace to be scared/terrified of something or someone and then rewards/reinforces that behavior of being scared.

    Be scared of Muslims…people freak out when they see anyone with a turban (even a Sikh).

    Be scared of Guns…people freak out when they see anything even resembling a gun (pop tart, drawing, t-shirt).

    This is a tried and true method of ruling long practiced for thousands of years.

  15. Repeat after me, always in the open, in a public place with people around, away from the entrance, preferably at a RKBA-friendly place (think Gander Mountain, Cabelas, LGS, etc.). It’s not rocket science.

  16. The G just loves to keep people agitated. It’s the oldest trick in the political book. Frightened people are even easier to deceive and control than stupid people.

    We have a government that exploits fear and deals in secrecy. Ain’t it grand?

  17. I know the terrorists won in the US. And it was through none of their direct doing. I’ll explain…

    “As recently as the 1950s people carried rifles and shotguns in New York City without so much as a sideways glance.”
    This made me recall a friend and hunting buddy of your who reminded me of the many times in the mid-60s when we carried our shotguns and rifles on the subway to the Port Authority to catch the bus upstate. Nobody gave us a second look. One time a cop asked us where we were going and wished us luck.

    And there was terrorism then – remember the “Mad Bomber” in NYC? Terrorist. But the media kept people calm and just presented facts then.

    Today, our teenage actions would have shut New York City down for hours, and we’d be all over then news around the world? Why? 911 happened, and fear became routine. Everyone is afraid. Of everything. Even offending someone else. My friends, if that’s not terror, I don’t know what is. And it is IMO abetted by our “leaders” on a daily basis.

    I just don’t know the answer, other than “Vote the bastards out!

  18. So the police answer a call from a bank of “there are two guys with guns out in the parking lot, we think they are robbers… Oh I think they got spooked and are leaving”… They stop the guys, find out they are not in fact robbers, let them go, and after the fact they say they will run it by the prosecutor to see if charges are applicable… The only part that I think is no good is the admin running by the prosecutor. Once the cops found the guys, stopped them, and found out that no crime was in fact afoot (remember they only had the report of the “attempted robbery maybe”). They sent them on their merry way…. I have no issue with the police’s initial response.

    • bgreenea3: “sent them on their merry way…. I have no issue with the police’s initial response.”

      Well you SHOULD. These innocent citizens were exercising their right to be armed. The police department’s instant response SHOULD have been to ASK if the supposed robbers had entered the bank. The moment the nervous Nellie from the bank said NO, they SHOULD have stopped responding. End of story.

      Let’s use an analogy. We’ll compare it to another right. You have the right to free speech. You stand in the parking lot of a bank and begin talking to a friend. The bank manager walks by and overhears you talking about a strike at a local manufacturing plant. He “thinks” that you were planning to incite violence and riot at that plant. He goes in the bank and tells everyone of this riot plot. They get all worked up.

      Under federal law, a riot is a public disturbance involving an act of violence by one or more persons assembled in a group of at least three people. Inciting a riot applies to a person who organizes, ENCOURAGES, or participates in a riot. It can apply to one who urges or INSTIGATES others to riot. According to 18 USCS § 2102 “to incite a riot”, or “to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on a riot”, includes, but is not limited to, urging or instigating other persons to riot, but shall not be deemed to mean the mere oral or written (1) advocacy of ideas or (2) expression of belief, not involving advocacy of any act or acts of violence or assertion of the rightness of, or the right to commit, any such act or acts.”

      The bank manager calls the police, who respond, but you have left in your vehicles. They hunt you both down and conduct a “tactical” takedown in the street. After interviewing you, they decide to release you and your friend.

      Were you exercising a “right” to free speech in the parking lot? Did you commit any crime?

      Then the Sheriff gets on TV and says that he will present the case to the county prosecutor for a possible charge of “inciting panic.”

      Any difference?

  19. “Liberal fascism” right there in the summary, and linked to a crazy conspiracy theory book on Amazon no less – that’s got to be a new low for TTAG.

    • Here is a review found on Amazon as the most helpful:

      It was inevitable that the review section for Goldberg’s “Liberal Fascism” would degenerate into the Mother of all Flame Wars. The advance dislike for this book simmered for months, and now the floodgates for negative reviews are open. I’d advise all potential readers of this book to bear in mind how few of the negative reviews appear to reflect a reading of the book.

      For those willing to give Goldberg the chance, he offers the following thesis: that the label fascist has its roots in the governing philosophies of Italy’s National Fascist Party and Germany’s National Socialist (Nazi) Party. He argues that there has been a false duality created between the Soviet Socialists of the USSR and the socialists united under the fascists in Italy and Germany. He argues that the totalitarian impulse, the philosophy of state control of decisions taking priority over individual freedoms, is the core uniting principle behind these movements, and he argues that the ongoing home of such statism is in what has come to be known as the “liberal” politics of the modern progressive movement. As you can imagine, that doesn’t sit very well with the targets of his argument (hence the rain of 1-star reviews).

      I’d encourage open minded readers of all backgrounds to read Goldberg’s book and address his arguments. I find his conversational and somewhat informal style to be witty and readable. That said, longtime Goldberg fans should know that this is not a book-length “G-File” (the hip and irreverent column he wrote for National Review Online). This is a serious scholarly work, and it deserves to be read and judged as such. Goldberg is attempting to right a historical injustice.

  20. drew says:
    November 8, 2013 at 12:59
    If I wasn’t a black man, I would open carry. But given the history of police brutality and shooting unarmed black men, I stay concealed everywhere it is legal in my state.

    That is a good policy basically anywhere in the USA, due to the assumption of criminality (Thanks a lot ghetto thugs and the news media that love them!). Always remember if you get involved in a DGU, re-holster concealed as soon as possible to avoid being shot by responding officers. You may be familiar with that case in NYC where a Black plainclothes Detective with his pistol out was shot multiple times by responding officers. This stuff can happen, in fact that scenario has happened more than once in NYC. Conversely, when you are traveling in areas known to be hostile to Black males (especially if you are with a female whose presence may be deemed “controversial”) it is good policy to have a carbine handy (M1?) in case of ambush, to at least have a fighting chance to escape in case of multiple opponents (Remember what happened to Bill Cosby’s son when he was stranded on the freeway). Unfortunately, there are still all too many low-brows out there whose last thought is that you may be an Allen West conservative and productive member of society. Then there are those who are simply criminal minded goblins/bullies looking for an easy mark to terrorize. Don’t (ever!) be that “victim”. Survival is the first rule…


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