The following is the transcript of my speech delivered to activists on Monday's "Lobby Day" gathering at the General Assembly in Richmond, organized by the Virginia Citizens Defense League. I plan on following up later in the day with a recounting of what happened. When it becomes available, I'll also post either a link to -- or an embedded copy of -- a video of the actual speech, which deviated a bit from script, but not much and not in anything essential.
Thank you for inviting me here to be a part of this wonderful example of citizens uniting to defend and advance unalienable rights. It’s an honor, and one I don’t take lightly, because it’s humbling and a bit intimidating to be singled out for scrutiny by so many leaders representing the front lines in the war on guns.
Yeah, leaders. Every one of you. If I were to ask each of you, personally, who the most important gun rights leader here today is, the one with the most real influence on your choices, your life and your liberty, the correct response would be to point to yourself and say “I am.”
That’s evidenced by your being here today while the overwhelming majority of your fellow gun owners all have reasons, in most cases excuses, for not being here. And while it’s encouraging to see all of you giving of your time to make the effort to be here, making sure the people who supposedly work for you are doing their jobs properly, that is, upholding their oaths of office to accomplish the most important function of government, securing the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, wouldn't it be – not just wonderful, but proper – if the crowd of citizen activists here stretched as far as the eye can see?
I haven’t been able to establish the exact number of gun owners in Virginia, but I’ve heard estimates of a million or so. Can you imagine if just a tenth of them were here?
“We all have jobs!” somebody called out to me when I spoke in front of a rally in Connecticut. That’s true, and one of those jobs is to do what Virginian Patrick Henry urged, to guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined."
Besides, do you know who else had jobs? The patriots at Lexington and Concord, for starters.
The men and women volunteers behind Virginia Citizens Defense League have jobs too, and they need the help of everyone here, and importantly of the same gun owners who have their reasons for not being here. How much of a load are they supposed to carry without other hands joining in to help bear it? I urge all of you, if you’re not already a member, to seek out a VCDL rep and rectify that before you leave here today. Please.
I’m reminded of a rally I participated in many years ago, and no, I’m not going to admit how many, when I lived in Southern California—the Million Moms had a rally in front of the federal building in LA’s Westwood neighborhood (interestingly, we were in front of a veteran’s cemetery), with moneyed special interests busing numbers in, naturally, and our folks set up a line across the street. Out of the entire Los Angeles area, we only got about 250 supporters to join us throughout the day, never all there at the same time. It was especially appalling, because a week or so earlier, 40,000 managed to drag themselves to the Pomona Fairgrounds for the largest gun show in the west. It’s no coincidence that the county that ran the ground, supervised by gun-haters and squishes, banned a show that had been a major draw for years, and it ended up moving to another state. There ought to be a lesson in there for people only in it for so-called “sporting purposes,” a term writer and attorney Richard Stevens of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership taught us had its origins in the Nazi Weapons Law of 1938.
It’s used today to divide and conquer, as if the Second Amendment is about duck hunting, leading to absurd declarations like “You don’t need a 30-round magazine to hunt a deer.” True, but, you might need it, like some brave Korean shopkeepers standing guard on rooftops during the LA Riots, when civil authority left them on their own, to convince a violent mob intent on death and destruction that there are easier pickings elsewhere.
But the battle, as everyone here knows, goes beyond the big ticket items like so-called “assault weapon” bans that play well in “progressive” –dominated enclaves –and I always put quotation marks around both those terms -- like New York, Connecticut and California, but won’t pass in the heartland –yet. Add millions of “pathway to Democratic Party membership” voters to the rolls and watch that change. Would that it were not so, but the only arguments I've seen offered to counter all credible polls revolve around wishful thinking.
But if anything, the antis -- and what else do we call them? Gungrabbers? Hoplophobes? Citizen disarmament zealots? Monopoly of Violence cultists? If anything, they’re in it for the long game, first let slip back by Nelson “Pete” Shields, founder of Handgun Control, Inc, which figured it would be a smart rebranding move to mask their real intentions by calling themselves the Brady Campaign. Let me tell you what he told The New Yorker back in 1976:
“We're going to have to take one step at a time, and the first step is necessarily -- given the political realities -- going to be very modest. . . . [W]e'll have to start working again to strengthen that law, and then again to strengthen the next law, and maybe again and again. Right now, though, we'd be satisfied not with half a loaf but with a slice. Our ultimate goal -- total control of handguns in the United States -- is going to take time. . . . The first problem is to slow down the number of handguns being produced and sold in this country. The second problem is to get handguns registered. The final problem is to make possession of all handguns and all handgun ammunition-except for the military, police, licensed security guards, licensed sporting clubs, and licensed gun collectors-totally illegal.”
And, of course, we know since then, the antis have added no end to the laundry list of... infringements on the right of the people to keep and bear arms. Hey, isn't there supposed to be some supreme law of the land against that or something?
See, it’s that incremental stuff, and they’ll take what they can get and then move on to their next objective, which we see unfolding before our eyes as the Michael Bloomberg machine spreads like cancer from state to state – and talk about an opportunity for a REAL public health model with invasive pathogens attacking what the Founders knew to be necessary to the security of a free state. How is that the act of anything but a domestic enemy, a useful idiot, or both?
That’s why “compromise” is so insidious – besides where’s the compromise if I take what’s yours and give you no concession except not trying to take everything –for now. If you think about it, that makes as much sense as throwing a scrap of flesh to a circling pack of jackals and believing that will satisfy them, and they’ll go off and leave you alone. If anyone wants to try that theory out, the Metro Richmond Zoo is down the road, and I’m sure they have a predator or two that would welcome you in its enclosure.
No takers? No matter, because we’re here today to confront and defy another more dangerous predator, a political one, and not surprisingly, a self-claimed fellow gun owner with a big “but.” I’m talking about Gov. Terry McAuliffe – I once had a boss who taught me the correct way to pronounce that was “McAwful” who said in his State of the Commonwealth address:
“As a gun owner myself, I fully believe that law-abiding citizens have a right to responsibly own and carry firearms. But...”
Stop right there. See what I mean? There sure are a lot of politicians with bug “buts” waddling around, aren't there?
So who wants to look at Gov. McAwful’s “but”? I know, I don’t either, but sometimes we need to do really unpleasant things.
As with almost everyone else with establishment influence in government and media, the governor was silent on his official commonwealth website about the Bill of Rights Day commemoration on December 15. Instead, he elected to announce intentions designed to eviscerate the Second Amendment.
Claiming his proposals were “common-sense measures to protect Virginia communities and keep dangerous weapons out of the wrong hands,” he proceeded to list numerous proposals that have never done any of that whenever and wherever they've been tried, but have succeeded at either hampering the exercise of a fundamental right or depriving it altogether.
To those who haven’t thought things through, “Prohibit the possession of firearms for persons subject to protective orders” may sound like a good idea. The problem, of course, is that it denies a right to a person who has not been convicted of anything, endangering them in the process. It’s not like vengeful exes haven’t made allegations before, it’s not like good gun owners suddenly turn violent and vengeful, and it’s not like such a law will have any effect on the evil decisions of violent criminals.
McAuliffe’s next point, “Prohibit the possession of firearms for misdemeanor domestic violence offenders,” neglects to mention federal law already does that (and where the Constitutional authority for that supposedly comes from is a whole other subject). It also fails to mention that no less an authority than the Supreme Court has ruled “physical force” sufficient to trigger a gun ban does “not have to be violent or even directly applied to the victim by the abuser.”
“Curtail handgun trafficking by reinstating the one handgun a month law” is another infringement that will make it inconvenient for gun owners to acquire firearms, violating not just their right to arms, but also general principles of property rights and freedom of choice. There is no reason to conclude that it will have any impact on its stated goal, “to reduce the chances of handguns causing violent tragedies in Virginia and across the nation,” meaning it’s really just media grandstanding and a calculated harassment of YOU.
The next wish list item, “Revoke concealed handgun permits for parents delinquent on child support payments” ...Huh?... that’s perhaps the loopiest, proposal in the lineup, and possibly the most dangerous in principle. Justifying stripping someone of rights under the rationale of “building a new Virginia economy” is not just evil, if allowed to pass, precedent that economic arguments trump gun rights would open the door to untold abuses.
“Closing the gun show loophole,” as has been demonstrated time and again, is code talk for “ending private sales.” That in turn means mandating background checks, the effectiveness of which a National Institute of Justice report admits “depends on the ability to reduce straw purchasing, REQUIRING GUN REGISTRATION...” Not only are felons immune from that requirement, again per a Supreme Court decision, but it's the demonstrable key needed by government to enable confiscation, which is really what all this "common sense gun safety law" nonsense has been leading up to as a matter of long-term design. Remember me mentioning Pete Shields a few minutes ago?
Similarly, wasting Virginia State Police resources by giving them authority to conduct “voluntary background checks,” particularly in light of the above, seems ridiculous. In light of the governor’s proposed budget cuts, it also seems dangerous to squander needed resources on political foolishness.
Finally, “clarifying what information can be displayed by gun show vendors” demonstrates that it’s really not about guns, it’s about freedom. In this case, it’s about freedom of speech, something “progressives” –remember, that’s in quotation marks-- say they’re all for, until they run across political expression they don’t agree with, at which point the knives come out.
“As a gun owner and a supporter of the Second Amendment, Governor McAuliffe believes in the right to bear arms,” McAuliffe’s Bill of Rights Day media release disingenuously insists.
Sure he does. For “big but progressives,” every day is Opposite Day.
You know, I could go on, in doing my homework for today I came across enough material to keep talking for hours, but I’m here to supplement the reason for our being here today, not hijack it. If you want to know more about what’s happening in Virginia and in the nation, you sure came to the right place where you can learn from the right people. Do that. Become an even more effective leader than you already are.
I appreciate the opportunity to be included in this, and to add my voice to the roar for freedom I know this crowd is capable of. Mine goes like this:
WE WON’T STAND FOR SCAPEGOATING
NO NEW GUN LAWS
REPEAL EXISTING INTOLERABLE ACTS
DENY SUCCESS TO MASS MURDERERS BY ABOLISHING PHONY ‘GUN-FREE’ VICTIM / KILLER-ENABLING ZONES -- NOW
WORK WITH US OR WE WILL WORK TO RETIRE YOU
That and I will not disarm.
Thank you all.