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    NRA Tag

    Well, the National Rifle Association has finally decided to release a statement about what I call the "open carry IN YOUR FACE!" (henceforth "OCIYF!") crowd in Texas, and the implications for reasonable gun owners and concealed carriers. The money shot?
    Let's not mince words, not only is [the open carry of long guns in public] rare, it's downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself. To those who are not acquainted with the dubious practice of using public displays of firearms as a means to draw attention to oneself or one's cause, it can be downright scary. It makes folks who might normally be perfectly open-minded about firearms feel uncomfortable and question the motives of pro-gun advocates.
    Beyond weird, the NRA notes that these OCIYF!" activities are actually HARMING the interests of gun owners and those of us private citizens who carry firearms for person protection:
    As a result of these hijinx, two popular fast food outlets have recently requested patrons to keep guns off the premises (more information can be found here and here). In other words, the freedom and goodwill these businesses had previously extended to gun owners has been curtailed because of the actions of an attention-hungry few who thought only of themselves and not of those who might be affected by their behavior. To state the obvious, that's counterproductive for the gun owning community.
    Bottom line, anyone who carries a firearm for the primary purpose of "LOOK AT MEEEEE!," ought to seriously consider whether they've achieved the maturity necessary to responsibly carry a firearm in public. Or as the NRA puts it:

    The past several days I've been attending the National Rifle Associations's Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, having been invited to speak at the NRA's 17th Annual Firearms Law Symposium as part of the larger gathering. The Annual Meeting is a massive event, with something on the order of 70,000 people attending, hundreds of exhibiting vendors covering more than 9 acres of exhibit space, and talks by pro-2nd Amendment Senators, Governors, and television/radio personalities. Given that context, my own little talk on Stand-Your-Ground ranks perhaps among the most modest of the Annual Meeting's constituent components. Even taken just within the context of the other Firearms Law Symposium--which included such well-known civil rights scholars as Stephen Halbrook and David Kopel, as well as Indiana Supreme Court Justice Stephen David (whose talk was particularly outstanding)--I was a small fish, indeed. Nevertheless, I've received repeated requests for video of my small talk, and I aim to please. Much of the substantive content of the talk--and, really, I talk substantively only for about 25 minutes--will be familiar to those who have previously seen my Stand-Your-Ground commentary from the pro-SYG victory at the UC Berkeley debate, from my posts here and elsewhere, or from my book and seminars. In the interests of avoiding a straight-forward droning delivery of the law, I've interlaced what humor I could into the talk, and in particular the last four minutes or so consists of the "Downfall" parody that was prepared following CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin's refusal to honor her "Zimmerman wager" with me following the Berkeley debate, as covered at length here: CNN analyst welches on bet after Andrew Branca wins “Stand-Your-Ground” Debate.

    The anti-gun advocacy group created by Former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, just lost one of it's most high profile Republican members, Tom Ridge, the Daily Caller recently reported.
    Former Republican Gov. Tom Ridge is stepping down from his position with Michael Bloomberg’s new anti-gun organization, The Daily Caller has learned. “When I signed on as an advisor to Everytown, I looked forward to a thoughtful and provocative discussion about the toll gun violence takes on Americans,” Ridge told The Daily Caller in a statement, through a spokesman. “After consultation with Everytown, I have decided that I am uncomfortable with their expected electoral work,” Ridge said. “Therefore, we have decided that we will pursue this issue in our separate spheres.” Bloomberg, hoping to add prominent Republicans to his gun control effort, had appointed Ridge to serve on the advisory board of his Everytown for Gun Safety umbrella organization. The New York Times reported last week that Bloomberg, the former liberal mayor of New York City, plans to spend about $50 million dollars to challenge the National Rifle Association.
    While Ridge declined to go into detail about the "expected electoral work" Everytown has in store, it's a safe bet there won't be much room for "thoughtful discussion" on gun violence. Take a look at their most recent ad, in which survivors and family members of gun victims attack statements made by NRA leadership. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6YZg9JTykA What do you think? Is it meant to appeal to your thoughts, or to your emotions? For their part, the NRA has released an ad responding directly to Bloomberg's $50 Million promise. The ad, featured below, highlights the power of small contributions from its individual supporters.
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