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By Preston S.

I don’t particularly like firearms. I fired my first one when I joined the military, and my last one shortly before getting out of it. I purchased them while in the military in order to train effectively and often, to meet potential demands for shooting ability. After I got out, I had no reason to own any, so I do not . . .

All that said, I hate “gun control” as it is. Or, really, almost anything that remotely sounds like it. I think we’ve already banned or control everything we need to (automatic weapons and most forms of explosives, missiles, etc.), and everything I’ve seen for the last few years is absolutely absurd, ludicrous, useless, an abridgement of Constitutional law, and an unnecessary expense of tax dollars, as well as an excuse for politicians to bicker over hot-button topics that either shouldn’t exist, or have already been resolved.

I get sick to my stomach when someone says, “I don’t want all guns banned, just the assault guns.” And I pleasantly fantasized about strangling someone a few weeks ago when I had to explain to him that we had completely dispensed with the idea of mass market weapons having to be reloaded after one shot by the very early 1900s. Now almost every firearm out there is either semi-automatic, double-action, or pump/lever action.

It pisses me off to live in a state (Maryland) that bans seemingly random weapons and ammo for no reason while leaving an almost identical model, or almost identical ammunition completely available.

I don’t know a whole lot about specific firearms, or specific models of firearms. I know enough to think most Americans are blithering idiots when it comes to firearms — unfortunately, that’s not limited to the ones who want to ban them, or we’d have won this already — and being a student, I don’t have enough money to make a significant contribution to any political entities.

So, what can this northeast-coast-dwelling, Ivy League pursuing, liberal arts studying, pot advocating, humanitarian mission serving, Obama-for-President (the first time) wishing, Patriot Act hating, decrease in defense budget voting, European education system appreciating, save the whales pandering, starry-eyed optimist do to help fight anti-firearm stupidity and defend the Constitution?

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  1. Considering the politicians you’ll most likely vote for, not much. At best, you can talk to people in your sphere of influence and attempt to balance them out a little bit on the 2nd amendment issue.

    • Plus 1. Read the news.Use your head. Talk to your friends.
      You are a liberal about to be mugged by reality.
      Speaking of news,
      Check out Drudge and Israeli gun control news.

      • Or decriminalizing pot and protecting endangered species (so long as you arent anti-hunting)? One could also argue that the budget in general and defense budget in particular are bloated mostly due to wasteful spending. A cut could help tighten the belt up a bit and make the DoD spend more wisely…

        • The DoD could and should be more efficient (and effective), but it’s a drop in the bucket compared to welfare spending and wholesale stealing (in the trillions), such as the “stimulus” and ObamaCare.

        • Yeah, check out You’ll see where the majority of our money is going. Welfare and Social Security.

        • We spend over 800 billion in defense and not even 400 billion on welfare. Where are you getting this “drop in the bucket”? We’ve spent over 6 trillion in the “War on Terror”. But you get upset over money being spent to provide some Americans health insurance, however flawed the method?

          I hate it when anti’s lie in the pursuit to deny our rights. Don’t emulate them. It’s unbecoming.

        • Incorrect: DoD 17% of federal budget; Welfare (in various forms; there are dozens of programs) 23%, Social Security (some of it is legitimate ss, based on employee/employer contributions, some are fake disability and other programs that are essentially welfare) 16%, HUD 1% (welfare housing), Social security administration (part welfare) 4%, And this still leaves a whole lot of welfare programs that are not directly funded by the federal government, but they twist the arms of companies to fund for “charitable” (welfare) purposes, through tax policies and other arm twisting. The states also spend a lot of their budgets on welfare (and zero on DoD). So, the total welfare spending, in purposefully divided segments, is much higher than DoD spending. That said, I am not necessarily supporting DoD spending or how its being spent, but the fact remains – it is considerably smaller than welfare.

      • You are correct and I stand corrected – opposing the Patriot Act is a good thing. It got lost in the heavy progressive agenda that our friend here spewed out. As for “humanitarian aid” – another progressive tool to keep the poor from working and thus remaining poor. Unfortunately, this “humanitarian aid” sickness is not limited to progressive only, as most of our society has already been corrupted into believing that by giving something for nothing they are actually helping someone.

        • So going to a remote African village and teaching the residents to farm more efficiently, or teaching the kids to read is bad now? I’m no expert on Christianity (where’s Paul T McCain, when we need him?), but I believe there’s a bit in there about teaching a man to fish, and probably a passage or two about charity.

          Note that he said he served on humanitarian missions (possibly in his military days, but also possibly as a volunteer), not that he supported foreign aid to third world despots.

        • We can argue about the rest all we like, but the fact that he sees forcing folks to be disarmed and defenseless as a BAD thing is something that we can at least agree upon in the meantime.

        • Preston is simply wavering between the two camps. He is a socialist/progressive, but has been completely turned to the Dark Side. However, I believe that he had already done enough damage to this country to last a lifetime. The rest of his life will be filled with excuses to justify the damage – good intentions, for the humanity, for the children, hope and change… Or to provide some Americans health insurance, however flawed the method?

      • Yeah screw the PATRIOT ACT but really humanitarian missions? They are a joke and a waste and the “aid” goes to warlords, dictators, terrorists, and criminals.

        • The US Ambassador to Nicaragua (forgot her name) said that all of their humanitarian aid was going directly to charities that are helping the poor people of Nicaragua, NONE to the government. I hope this is true to a large degree in several other countries, too.

        • Of course, you believe what the US Ambassador to Nicaragua says… If it’s on TV, it must be true…

  2. Educate yourself. Educate your friends. Even if they disagree, perhaps they’ll be able to form a more coherrent argument than “guns are bad”.

      • So do the popular thing now and leave your corrupt bankrupt overbearing home state for a free state so you can vote for the same actions that spoiled your home state? I think not, his personal growth is to be applauded but until he has seen the flaws in the rest of his ideals he could do us the favor of keeping his vote where the damage is done.

  3. You either give up on the people around and instead focus your efforts on raising your kids right or just opt out entirely and hope the feds don’t find cause to kick your door in and shoot your dogs for not submitting to the glorious iron will of .gov.

    By the bell curve this world is suffering an abundance of morons. Many are in charge of things. Fighting against them or trying to turn them is a foolish endeavor that will only frustrate the stupid and curse you with ulcers.

    You want to grow pot, grow it. You want to silence your rifle, silence it. You want to unpin that flash hider, unpin it. Do whatever you want knowing you are causing no harm to anyone. They’re the ones with the problem, not you.

    Accept they’re neanderthals awaiting extinction and live your one and only life the way you see fit.

  4. If you could just persuade the folks in your circles to base their decisions on facts–actual facts, that is, not made-up stuff, like “76 school shootings” or “40% of firearms sales are not checked” or “AR15s are military weapons”–and not feelings, you might make some headway. But then, if they did that, how long they would remain in the “save the whales, Obama for President” circles might be problematic.

  5. For starters you can wake up, and quit pretending you can go through life being lukewarm about everything, oh and if you want to protect the sanctity of the constitution stop voting for assholes who so clearly have nothing but disdain for personal liberty.

    • Given the garbage candidates that are available to choose from in most elections, saying “don’t vote for assholes who disdain personal liberty” is pretty much the equivalent of saying “don’t vote”.

      We face a bit of a problem in that those who truly respect liberty have little interest in telling other people what to do. Those who are most passionate and driven to politics are usually the ones who want to boss everyone else around and feed their own ego.

        • As long as human beings are on the ballot, you’ll never get perfection. Vote, get involved and stop lamenting the dearth of unicorns on the ballot.

        • Thank you for helping to elect Obama and every other gun-grabbing politician in your neck of the woods.

        • Come on, man.

          The least you could do is vote *against* the people who are doing the most harm to your natural rights and our constitutional system. Or better yet, develop a set of principles and support a third-party candidate if Dems and Repubs both make you want to vomit (and why wouldn’t they).

          Do you really want to be one of the silent 60% that Obama claimed to hear after being repudiated by the 30% who did vote?

          If you don’t vote, you’re just dead weight. Or worse, living proof that most Americans just don’t give a rat’s ass who their representatives are or what their politicians do.

        • Voting displays a tacit approval of the system where a 50% agreement can take away our rights. If we resist the system, it will collapse.

        • I will stand in opposition of the others and agree with you Bear.

          I’m actually partially glad that Obama was elected over McCain. Obama is against guns, but McCain is a big time gun grabber.

          I didn’t vote. Mostly because:
          A) I was in Texas and there was no chance Obama would have texas not even close and if he did – would it be worse than McCain??
          B) Obama Vs McCain. Do I want the potato or the carrot? Lets see. Is there anything other than tuber on the menu?
          C) Why vote? It only encourages them –

        • By not voting you just cast a vote for the enemies of our freedoms. You dishonor everyone who spilled blood for your ability to repudiate one of this country’s most important rights. You should be ashamed .

        • By not voting you just cast a vote for the enemies of our freedoms.

          I would prefer it if the low information uneducated masses would stop voting immediately. If I could get our freedoms back from the laws passed by their uneducated votes – that would be great.

          You dishonor everyone who spilled blood for your ability to repudiate one of this country’s most important rights.

          What if the vote was between two candidates who are the enemies of our freedoms? No dishonor there right?

          You should be ashamed.

          We should all be ashamed for allowing our freedoms to be trampled. Our fathers and forefathers should be ashamed for passing those laws that restrict our freedom. And we all should be ashamed now for allowing to pass the restrictions of freedom to the benefit of a very few and those very same restrictions to our children and our children’s children.

        • I too live in Texas.

          For presidential votes, thanks to the electoral college, my vote counts for diddly squat.

          So… not feeling even an ounce of guilt here. Freedom to vote means freedom not to vote too and I refuse to participate any longer in deciding between a giant douche and a turd sandwich.

        • You could a lot more by voting. No ballot is ever going to be great so instead just vote against the incumbent. Keep turning the politicians out every election cycle so they get less time to screw things up.

      • I too live in Texas.

        I did vote.

        I didn’t vote for Obama

        I didn’t vote for the RINO either.

        It could be said that my vote didn’t count, but the higher the popular vote is for the third party candidates, the more likely it will be that the big boys take note.

        That’s my two cents. It’s worth what y’all paid Fer it…

        • If the “big boys” do take note of a successful third-party candidate, they’ll have two choices:

          – Modify their philosophy to attract the people who voted for the third party

          – Increase the hurdles in an already-rigged system to prevent third party candidates from being on the ballot

          Care to place a wager on which way they’ll go? There are very few issues on which Republican and Democrat politicians are in complete agreement, but making sure they keep power shared only between their two parties and excluding outsiders from the system is absolutely one of them.

          I’m not saying not to vote for third parties, I’m just saying don’t expect it to do any good.

  6. I think we’ve already banned or control everything we need to (automatic weapons

    I get sick to my stomach when someone says, “I don’t want all guns banned, just the assault guns.”

    Do I need to point out the blatant hypocrisy of these two statements? My ban list is okay, but yours goes too far.

    • In fairness, that isn’t necessarily a good thing, If all we have on our side are folks that “really like firearms”, leaving out all the folks who may not particularly like them but recognize their social utility, and all the folks who don’t necessarily care for firearms but do care about limited government and the Constitution–well, we could be in deep doo-doo.

    • I stopped reading after he made the very hypocritical statement that full auto / select fire weapons should be banned, but that other bans are “arbitrary” and stupid.

  7. Beats me. You don’t like guns or own one? Thanks for your service but you don’t have skin in the game. Why did you write this? My own 40 year old son lives in Maryland. Army vet, carried a gun in the mideast AND won’t have one to protect my grandkids. He also thinks noone

    • When it comes to basic human rights like the RKBA, everyone has “skin in the game”, whether they realize it or not. Just because he chooses to to exercise the right at this time, doesn’t mean he can’t be interested in protecting it for others or a future time when he might wish to exercise it.

      I don’t generally attend protest rallies, but I’ll defend anyone’s right of assembly and free speech.

      You don’t have to own a gun to be against gun (owner) control. It’s about natural human rights, not personal possessions.

  8. Google NRA training, and Appleseed project. Find the local organizer of either, and offer to help out as a volunteer.

    You are already a hero, for real and a shining role model in all kids eyes, and 90% of the adults. The other ten percent wont be there, so you wont be frustrated by their idiocy, and dont forget, you cant fix stoopid in everyone, so just let it go.

    Just being there you are a walking example of whats real.
    Trust me, you will do good in ways that WILL save lives in the future.

    Thank you for your Service, and a deep bow of RESPECT.

  9. @Preston S., start out by getting a gun, learning how to use it well and safely and teaching others to do the same. Listening to somebody who supports gun rights but doesn’t like guns is like being lectured about marriage by a priest.

    • “Listening to somebody who supports gun rights but doesn’t like guns is like being lectured about marriage by a priest.”

      While I don’t agree with the Catholic Church’s prohibition on marriage within the clergy because it’s not biblical, I will agree with the priest’s assertions about marriage precisely because they ARE biblical. In the interest full disclosure, I am not a Catholic, but a bible-believing Christian.

      The OP is partly right, i.e. he generally supports gun rights, and viscerally objects to the anti-gun agenda (as he should), while still maintaining an okay-to-ban-list of his own. The fact that he is otherwise poorly grounded on so many topics is unfortunate. Regardless, your priest analogy is a poor one.

      • I think it’s a perfect analogy. Listening to someone who has never been married lecture about marriage is the same as listening to a vegan lecturing about the taste difference between a Porterhouse and a sirloin.

        Some priests may be experts in the bible, sure, so they can lecture about the bible. But marriage? Only in contemporary American society can people who have never done something (or even seen it done) be considered experts at it. That’s a whole wheelbarrow load of BS right there.

        I’ll bet you get sex advice from priests too, dontcha?

        • I’ll bet you get sex advice from priests too, dontcha?

          The Catholic clergy seems to know quite a bit about sex…just not with adults.

  10. Keep advocating as you are. Your other beliefs may lend credibility in the eyes of any antis you speak to.

  11. “After I got out, I had no reason to own any, so I do not . . .”

    I was thinking maybe a good place to start would be to find a reason, then maybe you could educate by example your acquaintances that you currently just fantasize strangling. But then as long as you choose to live in Maryland, the state will dictate your reasons to own everything.

    • I get a gut feeling, that just by how this guy described himself and his views, his service was less “I want to protect my country and its people as Frontline Infantry” and more “I made sure to enlist in a branch of the military in which I would almost never be in any immediate danger so I can get a free ride through college”. I say this because I know a couple of dudes like this. My two cents. No offense to any vets out there.

  12. The most close minded people I’ve ever met are liberal progressives. Many of them think that being open-minded is to agree with them. I find it amazing that some facts are acceptable and that some are not. The global warming debate is a good example. Many people and so called scientists will simply not accept a fact unless it supports the global warming climate crisis ideology. Unfortunately for them, many facts do not support the global warming crisis agenda.

    So when I argue with the progressives I make a simple caveat: you are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts. If a person cannot accept facts, then it is a waste of breath to argue with them. A disturbing number of gun-control advocates fall into this category. All they know about gun ownership is from Obama, or from Sandyhook, or from some other tragedy. Legitimate self-defense is overlooked or ignored. These people simply cannot be reasoned with.

    So I am extremely right-wing because that’s where the facts point. I am extremely pro-gun because that’s where the Constitution points. I do my best to be a pro gun and pro rights advocate, but as a realist, I understand that my perspective cannot always be shared.

  13. First, transfer the hell out of that school. Second, move the hell out of that state. You will succumb to gun hating hysteria/paranoia if you remain. Get out and you may have a chance.

    Beyond that, not much. I don’t believe in the mythical liberal firearms freedom supporter. You vote for Obama and Co., in effect, you’re anti-firearms freedom and all that flows from it. Intentions and feelings don’t count.

    When the cumulative effects of your and others’ voting records finally bring this country to the brink, and they will, you’ll probably regret having focused on those misguided, pseudo-idealistic stances to the detriment of defending firearms freedoms. When generations hence wonder in horror how this all could have happened, this all happened because of all of this. Thanks for being the catalyst for the Dark Ages II.

    • Nah. When the SHTF, progressives will blame it all on Bush. Or global warming. Or racism. Or the Koch Brothers. Or the War on Women. Or something.

    • The first Obama wasn’t anti gun – remember when a congresswoman got shot in the head and he didn’t do anything? Or when some guy went nuts in a movie theater and he didn’t do anything? It wasn’t until Sandy Hook that anything happened.

      And as for a “liberal gun supporter” – I believe in personal rights. The right to practice any (or no) religion. The right to gay marriage. Equal opportunity for education and employment. And the right to bear arms. It’s all about personal freedom and responsibility – classic liberalism.

    • PS: yep, I am somewhat suspicious of that author. Every standard meme of Progressive PCorrectedness, except Social Justice Warrior, LGBT and Religion of Peace, but hey….thats ok, TTAG is a diverse place, where all are welcomed, and debate is on the facts…not “feelings”.

      Preston, seriously, if you want to make a difference, in regards to defending your freedoms, just keep learning, and sharing your truth, from the military, and guns as an essential tool in preventing tyrranny, in fertile soil, which will most likely not be in academia.

      2A rights are the enabler, the force multiplier, if you will of all of our other Constitutional rights, and as you are about to find out, your past exposure to the real world, and to your fellow military, who are some of the best and brightest this Coujtry produces, in this Latest Generwation, returning from War in the most despotic, corrupt, and evil thought controlled part of the world, if you made it to the sandbox, gives you a stronger base to grow upon, than most adults who dont have that benefit.

      The progtard nonsense in n.e. Ivy league schools will be a challenge for you, because your eyes will be clear, when so many of your classmates are not….just keep your head down, watch your six, get the grades, and prepare yourself for that next step, when you can do more in the real world beyond.

  14. Let’s run the liberal/lefty/prog anti-gun/gun-controller checklist on this guy and see what is revealed, eh?
    Former military (establishes his expertise on the subject matter) — check.

    Used to own guns, but got rid of them on his own (saw the light!) — check.

    Can’t see the value in owning a gun (despite listing one or more reasons why he used to own guns) — check.

    Hates “gun control”, likes guns (attempt to establish reasonableness for fence-sitters) — check.

    Barely repressed violent tendencies (pleasantly fantasized about strangling someone) — check.

    Severely emotional response manifesting itself physically (I get sick to my stomach when someone says…) to simple statements that oppose his point of view — check.

    Doesn’t know much about guns, but THINKS he does (Now almost every firearm out there is either semi-automatic, double-action, or pump/lever action.) — check.

    Contradicts himself on gun-related knowledge/subjects (“Now almost every firearm out there is either semi-automatic, double-action, or pump/lever action.” vs. “I don’t know a whole lot about specific firearms, or specific models of firearms.”) — check.

    Thinks other Americans are stupid when it comes to guns (but he knows what’s best for us) — check.
    Result: Hard-core lefty/lib/prog and future gun-banner, but apparently just hasn’t figured it out yet

    • Yep that’s how I read it too…

      The point of the article being to solicit ideas from “the enemy” (us) on how we might approach the fence sitters he is attempting to emulate. The goal being to find a counter for our ideas and possibly win over a few of the a fore mentioned fence sitters. It’s easy to speak troll, you just point and grunt.

  15. VOTE!!!! Vote for people who are not trying to undermine or shred the Constitution.
    VOLUNTEER!!! Volunteer to help candidates who are voting to stop the madness.

    Wake up, grow up, wise up. Liberalism is only a beautiful facade for communism.
    If you voted for Obama even once, it’s clear to us that you weren’t paying attention.
    Did you not know that Obama has spent his entire life steeped in Marxist thought?
    Did you not know that Obama’s childhood mentor was a card carrying communist?
    Or that he actively sought out Marxist/communist friends and college professors?
    That’s right, you helped elect this country’s’ first…….communist president. Doh!

    What’s the old saying? Liberals are conservatives who haven’t been mugged.

    • Or work to help elect someone honest. Gun-grabbing candidates and incumbents are usually corrupt in other areas as well. And 2016 isn’t far away.

  16. freaking awesome article. its amazing that the more the anti-gunners do, the more people they drive to our side of the argument.

  17. “…do to help fight anti-firearm stupidity and defend the Constitution?”

    Go out and buy a gun. Use that gun to teach others how to shoot.

    I completely understand someone’s wish to never use a firearm to possibly harm another human or creature whether in self-defense or otherwise, nor do I mind if someone does not wish to spend the time to become the master of punching holes in paper at range. But if every household kept, or at least had regular access to, a rifle and a pistol and were capable of handling and firing them with confidence and the minimum of proficiency the whole country would be better off. Anti-Gunners are afraid of firearms not because they are actually scary, but because they are unfamiliar. And an unfamiliar object in the HANDS of someone unknown, that creates a scary situation, and fight or flight kicks in. A familiar, and understood, object in the hands of someone unknown, become a situation of logical thinking and reasoning. One situation leaves a person with a chance at permanent fear, the other allows a person to make an educated decision every time.

    If you do not wish to use the firearm in a self-defense situation ever, keep them locked up, it is very easy to do. But take others to the range and let them make the decision for themselves, rather than having it made for them by politicians and nay-sayers that likely do not have any first hand knowledge themselves.

    Granted I am firmly a Gunny, but spending a day at the action range with a pistol on my hip, surrounded by about 100 others with pistols on theirs, is the most exciting and most relaxing day. Exciting because I get to compete with like minded and skilled individuals, improving my own skills as well as encouraging others to improve theirs through friendly, but measurable and rewarded, competition. Relaxing because I am surrounded by 100 others whom firearms handling and safety are first, second, third, and fourth nature to them. Everyone knows the risks and the truths of owning and carrying a firearm on their belt, and is just as willing to keep others safe during the course of competition as themselves. We compete with one another, but above all else we want to see everyone act and be safe while still having the absolute maximum of fun.

    • I would much rather someone that knows nothing about guns does not own or use one. If a person is going to take on the responsibility of owning and using a firearm they should at least become familiar with how firearms work, basic maintenance, safety procedures and the laws in their state regarding defending themselves using a firearm or other means. I don’t really want to go to the range and have some idiot next to me waving it around and pointing it at others, having his/her finger on the trigger when they shouldn’t and so on. If they don’t want to take the time to learn the basics then they should stay away from firearms.

      • I think that’s what he meant by “confidence and the minimum of proficiency “. Unless they were born into a family of active shooters, a lot of first time gun owners need to be taught this. They are going to be buying firearms for their own personal reasons as is their right. I see a lot of these people when I teach NRA First Steps. Granted, the ones I see recognize the need to seek knowledge unlike some that just show up at the range, but these people are the future of gun ownership in this country whether we like it or not, and we need to take the responsibility to guide them toward safe gun handling skills and do it in a way that encourages them to continue. Not everyone is going to identify as a “gun guy or “gun gal” but it is important that they continue to see the value of our gun rights. I have no tolerance for unsafe actions but we can correct people in a manner that doesn’t turn them off to the sport and gun ownership.

  18. Well, your not going to like what I’m about to tell you, but, for starters, you can apply what you’ve learned about the gun issue to the rest of your liberal views. The fact is, the Left in this country is hardcore Statist, whether you like it or not. And the vast majority of what your learning in school has an incredible liberal slant, and what you think you know about conservatives or the Republican party is most likely wrong.

    Let me guess, you mainly vote for democrats because you think the GOP has a War on Women, wants to ram religion down your throat, is racist, and wants to hang gays in the street? Wrong again. First of all, the GOP wants none of that. Those misconceptions have been brought on by a well financed and organized media slur campaign, much like has been used for gun control. The media is owned by the Liberals. Now, here’s what your liberal professors wont teach you: the GOP gets this stigma from simple bad politicking left over from the Conservative Revolution of the 1990s. This happened because the GOP simply wanted votes, and appealed to the hardcore religious rebirth that had occurred at this time. Since then, the GOP is still relying on what remains of this vote and is influenced by a few loud mouthed members that give it a bad name. In reality, the GOP wishes it could simply drop all these issues, and it is, slowly and quietly. How often to you really hear them ranting against these social issues any more? Not often, a few of the most hardcore do sure, but they don’t speak for the party as a whole.

    Think about it, how much legitimate GOP backed legislation in the past 10 years has involved Gays, Abortion, Race or Women? None. They don’t want to bring back Jim Crowe, they don’t want to put women back in the kitchen, and they really don’t care what gays do. The GOP has rightfully been returning back to Fiscal Conservatism and Libertarian Values.

    The Democrats on the other hand have fully embraced the power of the State, and they wish to accomplish all their goals through State power. In other words, they want to force their agenda on you by the barrel of a gun. Look at obamacare. Whatever your opinion is on it- its being forced upon you. Is that right? is that what America is supposed to be about? No. Its supposed to be about freedom of choice and power of the individual….

    I used to be like you. I too am a veteran, and I too used to support the democrats. Back then I was young, uneducated, and really didn’t understand how the world worked. Then after years of experience in the real world, and getting a real education thanks to some very intelligent people who do not do what their told, I changed my tune.

    The GOP is not perfect. They are still a political party, and like anything in politics, its full of dirty money and back door handshakes. That’s politics. Always has and always will. But if you want change, and you want to convince others, I suggest learning more, as much as you can, and learning from those who are much smarter than you. Knowledge is power. Then show others what you’ve learned, and get them and yourself to vote in primaries for good intelligent GOP candidates.

    Also, joining the NRA is only like 25-30$ a month. GOA and SAF are about the same, join them all if you wish. And whatever your personal opinion of them is regardless, join them anyway. The NRA is the 800lb guerrilla of gun rights and without them the 2nd Amendment would’ve been dead before you were born. Again, they are not perfect, they are political. But they’re the best hope we have in keeping this battle in the courtroom and not out in the streets.

    • Also if you want to have your eyes opened about what party is truly “racist”, check out what conservative black supreme court justice Clarence Thomas has to say about the Democratic party and the Northern White Liberal Elites. There’s a good reason alone to never vote Democrat ever again.

  19. IMO, too many folks on here think everyone should think exactly like they do. How is that much different than the government wanting to control everyone? There are quite a few folks that are “liberal” on many issues but not on gun issues. Again, my opinion. Not everyone has to think lockstep with everyone else on every issue to be against gun controls or gun grabbing politicians. And yes, there are grey areas in politics and lots of issues in life. Not everything is black and white in all people’s minds. And I, for one, think that is fine. When you think in absolutes you block out logical, rational discussion and thinking on many issues.

    • Those gray areas aren’t even gray, they are a vast gradient of infinite color. The only reason I separate things in black and white is due to the fact that they are in color. For example, the moral acceptance/rejection of abortion. Many would find it acceptable to end a life when it is only 8 cells or 3,000 or 30,000. That is not a person – right? It is just a collection of cells. There is no brain, there is no heart. But at the same time, most would object to aborting a life that is 7/8 months old. But where exactly do you draw the line in this seamless grow of life between 1 cell and trillions of cells. How it is fair to end the life of a unique individual at 4mo and 15 days, but keep that life over 4mo and 15 days. Where is the justice? Where is the fairness? Because a line cannot be drawn, we then focus on the extremes. Do we allow it, or do we don’t? By focusing on the extremes we make it fair for all encompassed between those extremes, now the only question becomes which of those extremes is more ethical than the other?

      I like to apply the same to gun control. How to do define a line amongst millions of different kinds of guns. The ATF attempts to draw a line around that 80% lower mark. It is completely arbitrary and determined by them. And you have victims of victimless crimes who get caught in this “line.” And when we look at what the line really is – it really is of no significance. Likewise with firearm configurations/imports, etc. OK, this barrel shroud is not allowed, and this butt-stock is aftermarket, not in the original configuration as imported, so we are going to make it illegal despite that it looks identical to the imported one and functions exactly the same. What we end up in, is no reduction of crime whatsoever and only endless red tape bureaucratic nonsense that only gun sports enthusiasts follow and of which are familiar. It’s almost like the laws are aimed to torture us (the law abiding gun owner) who have no intent of ill will towards anyone. Anti-Culture laws. So I then look at the extremes since a line cannot be drawn, now the only question becomes which of those extremes is more ethical than the other?

  20. So, what can this northeast-coast-dwelling, Ivy League pursuing, liberal arts studying, pot advocating, humanitarian mission serving, Obama-for-President (the first time) wishing, Patriot Act hating, decrease in defense budget voting, European education system appreciating, save the whales pandering, starry-eyed optimist do to help fight anti-firearm stupidity and defend the Constitution?

    Preston. Do some deep thinking. Ultimately you need to figure out what is important to you. You say you have no reason to own a gun, and appear as though you are not interested in guns for sport or any other reason, yet you have written a piece asking what you can do to fight firearm stupidity and defend the constitution, and then sent that piece to a gun blog where it was published. I guess a better question is: Why do you think that the 2nd amendment and the constitution should be defended? When you reach that conclusion, discuss it with your friends and relatives in a logical debate. Find out why your neighbors, your friends, and your relatives hate guns, people who own guns, and the culture of people that own guns. Debate them. Point out your conclusions and justify your reasoning to them. If they can prove you wrong – great. If you know they are wrong or suspect so, argue it with evidence. If you can do that, you are already helping quite a bit.

  21. “northeast-coast-dwelling, Ivy League pursuing, liberal arts studying, pot advocating, humanitarian mission serving, Obama-for-President (the first time) wishing, Patriot Act hating, decrease in defense budget voting, European education system appreciating, save the whales pandering, starry-eyed optimist”

    You can start by picking half of those things to quit doing. That may come off as a bit snarky but let me explain.

    Northeast coast dwelling- You take the risk of surrounding yourself within an echo chamber of anti-constitutional rhetoric depending on the specific area in which you choose to live.

    Ivy League pursuing- Could that same knowledge be gained with a substantially lower cost elsewhere? Does this education have a decidedly liberal lean to it? Are you planning on earning based on your merit within your chosen field or do you hope the ivy league diploma will garner you special treatment?

    Liberal arts studying- You’d have to be more specific here. That moniker can cover a wide range of study from worthwhile to totally inane and anywhere in between.

    Pot advocating- For what reason? To hang your hat on legalizing pot for recreational use is a waste of your mental faculties. To fight for anti-criminalization based on the failed(even detrimental) “war on drugs” wasting countless resources within a finite system as well as being used as a strong arm against U.S. citizens seems a more worthwhile reason. Or would the reason entail the massive economic benefit hemp production could provide within this country?

    Humanitarian mission serving- That’s your choice and though I may have no right to say this… I’m proud of you as a fellow human for showing that compassion. The only question I would have you ask yourself is could your skills or services provide a greater benefit if that time were spent doing something else?

    Obama-for-President (the first time) wishing- (I’ll try to be nice here)Why on earth would you possibly think this was a good idea? The signs were there. Were you paying attention at all or were you caught up in the rhetoric of “hope and change”? He came from Chicago, he was involved in politics there, what more reason could you possibly need to avoid the clown?

    Patriot Act hating- I agree with you here as a whole but once again… Are you caught up in the rhetoric and rumor or have you done any research into what you claim to hate? I’ll be the first to agree that it should cease to exist but I also believe SOME of the measures included were and are needed and have been for some time.

    Decrease in defense budget voting- I’d expand that to “decrease of ALL budget voting” albeit I’m guessing for a different reason. I believe the lion share of expenditures within our government to be the sole cost of bureaucracy NOT on actual “governing”. Give the military a reasonable budget then let the military do their job within that budget. Politicians have no business mandating ground level decisions. If we don’t need to kill shit, don’t send the military. It’s what they’re trained for and they’re pretty damn good at it.

    European education system appreciating- If you’d rather be there, go there. I’ll agree that our education system could use a huge injection of common sense as well as measures to stop the indoctrination of our youth with political bias(on BOTH sides) but the information is there and the infrastructure is there. Have you actually put serious thought into WHY the dumbing down of America is happening? I firmly believe the family is at fault as much if not more than the education system. Couple that with political agenda driven directives, greed based bureaucracy and lack of accountability(personal AND professional) and you have a clusterf$%k of waste with little to no progress being made towards actual education.

    Save the whales pandering- I’d like to save the whales as well. I honestly believe 99.99999% of people on this site would too. What I’m not interested in is allowing politicians pandering to special interest groups to pass crippling restrictions on American businesses or add massive debt to OUR future to save whales(or whatever animal, tree or bug) that are endangered at far greater levels because of the actions of other countries or nations over which we have no right to impose our will.

    Starry-eyed optimist- Keep that up! We need more optimists around but just make sure you look back down here every once in a while and research the FACTS before blindly following your heart/gut. The political intelligentsia garner support by catering to peoples feelings instead of furthering our species with the hard earned tools of logic and reason. That’s a dangerous path that to my mind gets us nowhere fast. Laws need to be made based on reason NOT feeling. Stop voting with your feelings and start using your brain as the litmus test of whether a law is reasonable.

    WOW. That got long winded and WAAAY off course. Sorry guys.

  22. To the author: Your doing it right now. Get educated, write editorials for local news, keep pushing the message. And the comic strip (TTAG?) is a perfect example of communicating our cause a well.

  23. @Preston S. Thanks for writing this. That took a bit of courage.

    In response to your closing question, here’s what I think you should do: Continue doing what you’re doing—asking questions, letting others know you and where you’re coming from. Be able to articulate your personal point of view cogently, and when you find yourself unable to do that, be humble enough to adjust your views.

    In addition to doing that, get to know someone who is very different from you, but shares your views on fighting “anti-firearm stupidity” (i.e., “hoplophobia”). An uncle? A buddy from the military? A guy who drives a truck for a living? (Not someone else associated with your school.) Go to the range with him; hang out and shoot the bull with him; get into arguments with him. Do that, and you’ll understand the interests that drive those who are different from you, which is very different than understanding the positions they may take.

    Finally, don’t allow yourself to be molded into something someone else wants you to be. Both your professors and many of those who post here at TTAG are like this: they’ll tell you what to think, and downgrade you if you disagree. We’ve got enough curmudgeonly, crabby gun guys around here; we need you to be who you are.

    Oh, and one more thing: I do suggest you read Dan Baum’s book Gun Guys. You may not agree with everything he says (I don’t!), but I think you’ll find a common voice.

    • Concur on “Gun Guys” which Baum claimed in his foreword to have written for his lib’rul friends…

      I thought the writing wa great, and the stories of widely different gun owners an education for this cranky old curmudgeonly seeming person…I’m actually not, closer to your description, just a lot more crispy and blac around the edges, from reality…

      And dont hang around here too much, or like Dan, who has admitted some shifting world views, since the last POTUS election, so you find your own way to solid ‘conservative’ principles. You’ll get that, IMHO, pondering what kind of spouse, how to pay the mortgage, what to teach your kids….and thats down the road…
      so, enjoy your journey, and make it your own.

  24. If an eight year-old in third world country can build a handgun with the simplest tools they just aren’t going away no matter what laws are passed. Look at it from a perspective of safety. You would get first aid training and probably have escape plans if there was a fire. So educate yourself and your friends on how to handle them. Knowledge is a more powerful liberator than muddled laws will ever be.

  25. LOL – LOVE the OP’s last paragraph. Read that one without taking a mental breath!

    First off, congratulations to you for having an open, free-thinking mind that realizes that it’s not required to be fit, shoved, or shaped into one of two diametrically opposed camps. Although I like, enjoy, and appreciate firearms – one does not need to do so in order to understand the negative impact to freedom and logic associated with “gun control” laws.

    As others have mentioned, speak your mind to anyone who will hear it, and vote your mind in any election! I have educated many people on the lack of logic involved with gun control laws, and people do listen and learn. Most people that don’t like “insert dislike here” will have an emotional response, will shy away from learning about it, and will vote against it. We need to combat that tendency and help educate our peers so they can make the informed decisions. Knowledge is power…and in our case, knowledge is our ally.

  26. It’s simple, really. Stop voting for people who think that more government regulation will solve more problems than it creates.

  27. Preston S- When you swore an oath to the United States Constitution it was to protect from foreign and domestic, so quit voting for the same domestic enemies that you swore to fight. Just because you are a veteran is the only reason this is posted on this sight, which is not right or appreciated. I have no idea what personal reasons motivated you to join the armed services but by supporting the liberal policiies that you do, your service was in no way connected to ensuring or protecting the freedoms espoused in the constitution that many liberty minded and armed free Americans believe in and have lost loved ones for. Hopefully it doesn’t take getting mugged or watching a loved one harmed in front of you before you realize the most cherished part of being an American Citizen, which is the ability to rely upon yourself to guarantee the safety of those around you, even if some liberal douche is attempting to vote away the right to own the best defensive tools.
    You did the government a great job but you came up wanton for service to the People.

  28. “It pisses me off to live in a state (Maryland) that bans seemingly random weapons and ammo for no reason while leaving an almost identical model, or almost identical ammunition completely available.”

    Here’s the solution.
    Buy guns. Join a club. Take friends and family shooting. Advocate for firearms rights. Convert people in the middle. Join the NRA. Vote. Work to make a difference.

  29. As I have said on other posts recently, define the narrative yourself — do NOT let gun grabbers define the narrative.

    And the narrative is incredibly simple. It is an incredible insult to our human dignity when anyone — whether constituents, politicians, bureaucrats, or law enforcement — tell us whether we can own or possess handheld objects made of wood, plastic, and steel, period, the end.

    Tell people how deeply insulting it is to a woman’s dignity if someone dictated which feminine products a woman could use. It is deeply insulting because that is a deeply personal decision for that woman and no one else — it is no one else’s business, the end. So it is with firearms. If or what kind of firearm you or I or anyone else chooses to own and/or carry is a deeply personal decision and no one else’s business, period.

  30. Why do some many progressive regressives preface thier opinions with ‘I think Americans are stupid’ etc…

    Contempt and hatred for your neighbors backed by nothing but self conceit seems to be calling card for the left

  31. First: Guns are not a left/right issue. The Democrats and Republicans may differ on guns, but that’s party line difference rather than left/right. It is only recently that the Democrats have staked their claim on killing firearm freedom. BUT you can help by voting in the primaries in your state. Vote out the current anti-gun Democrats, and support the pro-gun Democrats. I’ll support a person who is pro-gun, and ignore the issues I’m only slightly interested in. For instance, I’m willing to overlook someone who opposes gay marriage if his opponent doesn’t feel that my best friend’s kid should be able to defend her wife with a gun. Self defense is the key. Armed gay people are less likely to get bashed.

    It sounds like you probably have the same issues as many other Liberal gun owners. You may want to talk with others of your like to see how THEY have been adapting and attempting to sway their anti-gun friends. You may even want to get a few firearms to take your friends to the range.

    Third: At it’s core gun ownership is about freedom. It’s about the ability to make your choice about what you do to your body, and what you allow another to do to your body.

    • Actually, “guns” are a Left or Right issue. More precisely, they are the Divide between the socialists and the people that prefer liberty, individual responsibility and capitalism (all of those terms are actually synonymous). Hope no one here is naive enough to believe that any amount of gun (people) control is actually for the safety of the citizens (children, elderly, you fill in the blanks); it is strictly for the safety of he government if and when it decides to take whatever control of the citizen that it wishes. That is the entire point of the Second Amendment. The Founders have clearly seen it, have written about it and have made sure that it is a prominent part of the Constitution. In fact, the Second Amendment is the only pillar that the Constitution (or what remains of it) has. Without it, we would have devolved back into the tyranny that this country was designed to avoid. The socialists/liberals hate the entire Constitution (see how well political correctness deals with free speech…), but they are concentrating on the Second Amendment because it is the foundation and strength for everything else. So, yes, this is a Right/Left issue.

  32. What can you do? Get your head out of your 4th point of contact. Or didn’t come across that in the military. And grow up.

    You 1st paragraph indicates you’re clueless and “northeast-coast-dwelling, Ivy League pursuing, liberal arts studying, pot advocating, humanitarian mission serving, Obama-for-President (the first time) wishing, Patriot Act hating, decrease in defense budget voting, European education system appreciating, save the whales pandering, starry-eyed optimist confirms it. Grow up.

  33. Preston, come see us at the Liberal Gun Club, We’re looking for a few good men and women to donate some time to help us, and our (soon to be) 501(c)(4) arm the Liberal Gun Owners Association, fight the kind of stupidity you decry in your post.

  34. unfortunately if your a liberal and vote liberal you are in fact against the 2nd amendment i wish the two weren’t mutually exclusive as i am a freedom loving individual and would love to support more liberal causes like gay marriage and even the pot thing but as things stand now if i vote for anyone that is for those things i am voting for gun control and i will not do that for anyone

  35. Dear Preston,

    I was like you, although I’m female and was never in the military.

    What should you do? In my humble option, if you don’t have one, get a SiriusXM subscription, or sign up online for a free 30 day trial. Turn on a show called the Wilkow Majority on the Patriot Channel at noon on weekdays.

    Listen to it for two weeks, even if you can’t stand him. I bet after two weeks you won’t.

    Then, if you agree with me after those two weeks, convince one other person who considers themselves to be somewhat liberal but still respects the Constitution to listen to him too.

    If we could keep this chain going, we might get people to respect the Constitution again.

    And if we could do that gun rights would be safe.

    The guy is arrogant, for sure, but I’ve never heard anyone argue better for the Constitution and rule of law. And that includes gun rights.

  36. I’m liberal, progressive, and a socialist.

    And I vote strait ticket GOP because my gun rights are more important than any other right, as they allow me to continue to whine about my other rights.

    The US isn’t perfect, but we have it pretty damn good. Other countries seem to be happier, healthier, and more productive, and all of those countries use a socialist political system.

    “Socialist” is a dirty word in American politics, yet nations that embrace a social economic and political system are happier than Americans are.

    My question for all the conservatives here is: why do you get so pissed about someone going through your gun cabinet but think it’s perfectly alright for the same government to make social judgements on entire sects of society based upon religion?

    • “I’m liberal, progressive, and a socialist. And I vote strait ticket GOP…” Jake, no worries – by voting GOP you are voting for a socialist agenda. As to your basic premise that people are happier under socialism, perhaps you’re right. One of the most difficult activities for a person is a mental process. Most would rather exert themselves physically than seriously apply their brains, which also involves being responsible for the decisions they make, good or bad. Socialism eliminates personal responsibility and the requirement to think (and carry the consequences of one’s decisions). For many, that is happiness. For those on the bottom of the social structure, socialism provides the “safety net.” It also makes sure that you never keep too much of what you work for. For the top of the ladder, socialism provides easy access to monopolies – by claiming to help the children, the society, etc., the top tier will always rape the bottom. The middle tier is unstable and a threat to a socialist society, so it is always eliminated. Through taxes and redistribution in “progressive” systems, through brute force in others. If that is the society that you prefer to live in, and all for the singular benefit of not having to be responsible for your own actions (unless you’re in the top tier and enjoy raping the society) – march on. Of course, on the surface, you will disagree with this assessment, but please do look at it critically and tell me point by point where the facts don’t add up. And if they do add up, do you still want to cling to your “humanitarian” views that are in fact raping your neighbor? As to your question of the religious right dictating what people should do in their bedrooms, that is a direct result of the teachings of the Church, which is a socialist establishment. The communal nature of the Church, with it’s life-long guilt trip and collection of the efforts of the many to support the few on the top, is a classic socialist structure.

      • Although I *do* disagree with many of your assertions, thank you for taking the time to respond logically, concisely, and without anger or flaming. I expected to be immediately bashed.

        The meat of your response can be countered with an examination of the huge, booming middle classes in northwestern European nations. Nations that are almost universally socialist in their financial systems, and liberal in their social systems.

        The idea that I must take from my neighbor, or my neighbor must take from me, are softened in these nations, as the “rat race” mentality of having to be at the top of the pack fades away a little. Although the classical argument that this diminishes innovation or punishes the truly gifted is one consistently cited in arguments against social financial systems, they don’t seem to have a lack of education, health care, warriors, lawyers, skilled trades operators, or any other classical professional staff. Sweden, Norway, Switzerland, etc: All very socialist nations operating at peak monetary and social efficiency. And these nations are among the richest, best educated, most intelligent, and happiest in the world.

        (edited slightly for some grammar)

        • Jake, let’s analyze the premises. “the huge, booming middle classes in northwestern European nations.” There are several factors involved. Most importantly, I think, is the culture of the Northwestern /Scandinavian people. They have historically been extremely industrious and honest. In spite of the economic and political environment they continue to labor. But with an ever-growing influx of immigrants, the overall picture there is rapidly changing. It is only a matter of time before the reality of working for the benefit of someone else who is not working will set in. Also, what you perceive as a “booming middle class” is not that well off as, although they get high salaries, their expenses are proportionally higher. I think that most economists will agree that monetarily the US middle class is richer than the European middle class. As to the often extremely liberal social systems, I’m not quite ready yet to accept incest and child sex as it is being accepted in Norway, for example. My repulsion to it has nothing to do with God or god, but with cultural degradation that will lead to an eventual societal collapse.
          Your premise that “I must take from my neighbor, or my neighbor must take from me, [is] softened in these nations” begs a question – softened or not, why should it happen at all? Any involuntary exchange or action is a form of slavery. Now, some forms of slavery could be “kind and gentle,” for some, but abhorrent to me and any other person who values freedom above all else. You are opposed to what you perceive as a “rat race.” But it is a natural human action to better oneself. It is called Progress. What socialism does is creates monopolies for the people on the top and limits competition from the bottom. In other words, the bottom 99% are cast into the almost non-moving Grey Matter of Existence; but the socialist propaganda tells you that you are now protected from the “rat race.” Sure you are – you are protected from advancement so that you will never be a threat to the 1%, but in such a way that you feel happy about it.
          As to the diminishing innovation – ask yourself – how willing are you to develop something, to invest your time, your resources, your risk – and give it away or share it with all around you who have invested nothing in your creation? Perhaps you’re feeling altruistic, and you may do it once for the glory of it. Will you do it again? You say that those European nations are “operating [at] peak monetary and social efficiency.” I say that they are operating in spine of socialism weighting them down. Image just how well they could be if it wasn’t for socialism. Look at all the major socialist countries in the world, and the story has always been the same – murders, often in the millions, cultural collapse as neighbor rats on neighbor, bribery, nepotism and wholesale stealing, and I can go on and on. What insanity must possess people to believe that the next version of socialism will be different and better?


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