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Archive for the ‘2nd Amendment’ Category

GUNS OUT: 2A Group Targets Anti-Gun Legislators

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By Beth Baumann
Bearing Arms
May 20, 2017

Things are getting heated in the gun world, especially with gun control advocates doing everything in their power to defeat the Second Amendment. But there’s one group who has ramped up their pulled cards out of their back pocket: Gun Owners of America (GOA).

Earlier this week, GOA submitted a letter to the House Energy and Commerce Committee expressing their concern over House Bill 1652, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act.

According to GOA, the bill could adversely affect gun owners. By establishing this new regulation, “hearing enhancers,” used by hunters to amplify sound, would mean the government could regulate hunting.

Devices used for hunting are similar to hearing aids but are often used by those without hearing loss. Stores like Cabela’s and Bass Pro Shops sell these hearing-aid type of devices to improve a hunter’s ability to detect the presence of game.

“There’s a pretty good chance that these hunting devices would fall within Warren’s definition of ‘over-the-counter hearing aid.’ Which would mean that a new federal bureaucracy would be in charge of regulating hunting,” the letter reads.

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GOA isn’t the first group to come out against this bill. In fact, more than 20 conservative organizations submitted a letter with their concerns.

Their concern? Personal sound amplification products (PSAP) can currently be purchased over-the-counter at pharmacies and are often used by people without hearing loss. If this bill passed, people would be required to go through the regulations associated with medical-grade hearing aids.

Elizabeth Warren isn’t the only legislator GOA has called out. Senator Chuck Schumer has made the gun group’s short list.

GOA is now urging gun owners to contact their representatives and voice their concerns over the Schumer amendment to the Firearm Owners’ Protection Act of 1986. Under the Schumer amendment, once a person loses his or her Second Amendment rights, they can never get them back.

From Gun Owners of America’s pre-written letter for gun owners:

The Firearm Owners’ Protection Act of 1986 contained a provision which would allow persons subject to a gun ban to regain their constitutional rights.

Make no mistake about it:  The procedure is no “piece of cake.” A person has to convince the ATF that they don’t represent a danger, or, failing that, they have to convince a federal court.

But even this is too much for the gun-hating Schumer.  For roughly 25 years, the “Schumer amendment” to the Commerce-Justice-Science Appropriations Bill has prohibited any federal funds from being used to restore anyone’s constitutional rights.

So for much of this time, if a person were a veteran with PTSD, they’re out of luck.  If they had a conviction for a federal regulatory offense — fifty years ago — they’re out of luck.  They will NEVER get their guns back, thanks to Democrat Chuck Schumer.

Every year, the Schumer amendment is renewed on the House’s appropriations bill.GOA has made a formal request with the Committee on Appropriations and the Commerce, Justice, Science subcommittee to delete the amendment.

““It is important for Congress to repeal the Schumer ban immediately.  Too many good Americans are being prevented from exercising their Second Amendment rights.  We hope that Rep. John Culberson (R-TX-7) will single-handedly remove the Schumer ban from his Commerce-Justice-State appropriations bill,” GOA Executive Director Erich Pratt told Breitbart.

Now the question is, will Republicans in the House of Representatives stand up for our Second Amendment rights?

BREAKING: California Releases Assault Weapons Ban Language

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By Beth Baumann
Bearing Arms
May 19, 2017

This morning, the State of California released their language regarding their assault weapons and high-capacity magazine bans.

In the document, the state mandates all firearms they consider to be “assault weapons” must be registered with the Department of Justice:

Any person who from January 1, 2001 to December 31, 2016 inclusive, lawfully possessed an assault weapon that does not have a fixed magazine as defined in Penal Code section 30515, including those weapons with an ammunition feeding device that can be readily removed from the firearm with the use of a tool (commonly referred to as a bullet-button weapon) must register the firearm before January 1, 2018.

The Golden State is considering anything without a “fixed magazine” the size of the pistol grip to be an assault weapon. The focus is primarily on those who build their own AR-15 style pistols.

Residents are then required to go through a number of crazy steps to make sure their firearm is in compliance:

  1. In order to be legally registered, the firearm has to have been legally acquired on or before December 31, 2016.
  2. Each gun owner would have to establish an account under the California Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS). The following information must be provided:
    • Full name
    • Address
    • Telephone number
    • Date of birth
    • Sex
    • Height
    • Weight
    • Eye color
    • Hair color
    • Military identification number (if applicable)
    • CA driver’s license or identification card number
    • United States citizenship status
    • Place of birth
    • Country of citizenship
    • Alien registration number (if applicable)
  3. The following information would have to be provided on each firearm that falls under their definition of an “assault weapon”:
    • Firearm type, make and model
    • Caliber
    • Firearm color
    • Barrel length
    • Serial number
    • All identification marks firearm
    • Country of origin/manufacturer
    • The date the firearm was acquired
    • The name and address of the individual from whom or business from which the firearm was acquired
    • Clear digital photos of firearms listed on the application.
      • One photo shall depict the bullet-button style magazine release installed on the firearm.
      • One photo shall depict the firearm from the end of the barrel to the end of the stock if it is a long gun or the point furthest from the end of the barrel if it is a pistol.
      • The other two photos shall show the left side of the receiver/frame and right side of the receiver/frame.
  4. If you’re like most families, you probably share your firearms amongst yourselves. If that’s the case, each family member who will be shooting the firearm must be registered as well. One person who have to be identified as the “primary registrant,” while others must register as “joint registrants.” To be a “joint registrant” you must live at the same address as the primary registrant. Everyone who is registered must be 19 by December 31, 2017.
    • Only direct family members (parent to child, child to parent, spouses) are allowed to be joint registrants.
    • Joint registrants have to provide proof of address showing they live with the primary registrant.
  5. You’ve gone through the above steps but wait. You’re not done yet! The CA DoJ will provide each of your firearms with a specific serial number. You must then take your firearm and your new serial number and have an FFL engrave it on your firearm.
  6. Once the serial number is engraved on your firearm, you have to provide pictures to the DoJ showing the serial number was completed.
  7. Pay a $15 fee per firearm to register your gun. There are no limits to the number of firearms that can be registered in a single transaction but the DoJ can deny your application for any reason.

The silliest part of this whole thing? The CA DoJ isn’t even ready for the registration process to begin.

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Buckle up, kids – it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Middle School Student Suspended From School For Liking This Picture On Instagram

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By Beth Baumann
Bearing Arms
May 8, 2017

Social media. It can be a great tool for reconnecting with old friends and long lost family members. For one middle school student, however, it became a nightmare.

Edgewood Middle School student Zachary Bowlin of Trenton, Ohio was suspended for 10 days after ‘liking’ a photo of a gun on Instagram.

The notice Bowlin’s parents received explained why their son was being suspended: “The reason for the intended suspension is as follows: Liking a post on social media that indicated potential school violence.”

The best part? It was an airsoft gun. 

“I liked it, scrolling down Instagram at night about 7, 8 o’clock I liked it,” Zachary FOX 19“The next morning they called me down [to the office] patted me down and checked me for weapons.”

“I was livid, I mean, I’m sitting here thinking ‘you just suspended him for ten days for liking a picture of a gun on a social media site,” father Marty Bowlin recounted. “He never shared, he never commented, he never made a threatening post… anything on the site, just liked it.”

The school dropped the suspension but sent an email to parents recounting the situation:

Yesterday evening school officials were made aware to an alleged threat of a student bringing a gun to school. We act on any potential threat to student safety swiftly and with the utmost importance. This morning, the alleged threat was addressed and we can assure you that all students at Edgewood Middle School are safe and school will continue as normal. Thank you.

Seriously? A threat of bringing a gun to school? What if *gasp* the student went to the gun range with his parents? Does that make him the next school shooter?

I understand wanting to protect students from any potential threat, especially the threat of a shooter on campus but this is just overkill.

Of course, the Superintendent doesn’t seem to see anything wrong with the school administration’s actions. This is the statement FOX 19 was provided with:

“Concerning the recent social media posting of a gun with the caption “Ready”, and the liking of this post by another student, the policy at Edgewood City Schools reads as follows:

The Board has a “zero tolerance” of violent, disruptive, harassing, intimidating, bullying, or any other inappropriate behavior by its students.

Furthermore, the policy states:

Students are also subject to discipline as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct that occurs off school property when the misbehavior adversely affects the educational process.

As the Superintendent of the Edgewood City Schools, I assure you that any social media threat will be taken serious including those who “like” the post when it potentially endangers the health and safety of students or adversely affects the educational process.”

Watch FOX 19‘s coverage of the incident:

“Shoot to Wound” vs. “Shoot to Stop” vs. “Shoot to Kill.”

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By Andrew Branca
Bearing Arms
February 15, 2014

[It seems that every time we post a story on a defensive gun use here, we have people claim in the comments that they are going to keep shooting at any person that feel justified in firing upon until that person is dead,  on the theory that if the person is dead, that then can’t sue them in civil court. I asked Andrew Branca, author of The Law of Self Defense, about this “conventional wisdom.” This is how he responded. –ed.]

The issue you raise is a common one, but fortunately not a complicated one.  It’s simply the self-defense law element of proportionality–a person is allowed to use only as much force as is necessary to neutralize the threat, and no more than that.  Proportionality has both an intensity and a temporal (or time) dimension.

In terms of intensity, one can meet a non-deadly attack only using non-deadly means, and a deadly force attack with deadly means (also, of course, non-deadly means).

In terms of time, one can use force only for as long as the threat remains imminent (that is, until it is neutralized).  If it takes 5 shots to do that, but 6 are fired, that 6th round is excessive force and does not qualify for justification as self-defense.  The first 5, you may be all good. The 6th gets you a murder conviction.

In this context, whether the threat has been neutralized is based on the reasonable perceptions of the defender.  Nevertheless, if the defender did or should have reasonably known the threat was neutralized, the legal justification for the continued use of force is gone, and every additional quantum of force thereafter is unlawful.

In the scenario you describe, where the defender keeps shooting NOT to neutralize the threat but merely to (supposedly) avoid civil liability, every unnecessary shot they fire into the neutralized-attacker sets them up for a murder or attempted murder conviction. (In any case, how are they to know if their attacker’s death frees them of civil liability? Not if he has any surviving family, it doesn’t.)

On the issue of shooting to wound, that gains you absolutely nothing in terms of mitigating either criminal or civil liability.  If you put a bullet in someone, you’ve shot them, deadly force, period.  Shoot them in the leg or shoot them in the chest, from a legal liability perspective it’s all the same (the only variance is whether they die or not, obviously the consequences are more severe if they die, but a gunshot to the thigh can accomplish that quite as effectively as one to the chest).

Further, if you are foolish enough to state out loud that you only shot to wound, it opens the door to the State arguing that you lacked the good faith subjective fear of imminent death or grave bodily harm necessary to justify your use of deadly force. After all, if you’d feared imminent death, you’d have shot to neutralize the threat decisively, not just make him more angry with a pistol-caliber bullet wound to an extremity.  If there was no genuine fear of death or grave bodily harm, your use of deadly force was not lawful self-defense, and off to jail you go.

The whole “never say you were shooting to stop, only shooting to kill” is not exactly untrue (and it IS better to phrase it that way), but it’s a bit of an overblown concern.  If someone is trying to imminently kill you, the law says you are allowed to kill them first if (and only if) necessary to defend yourself from their deadly attack. That’s the law, it’s permitted, justified even.  Merely having said “I shot to kill in order to save my life” is not going to lose you self-defense.

Of course, what we want to avoid is the “he only killed him because he wanted to, not because he had to,” line.  But in most cases of genuine self-defense, that’s not a very effective attack.  If it’s a concern in a case I was involved on I’d just bring in a defensive force expert and have him testify to the “coincidence” that the most effective way to stop also has the unfortunate consequence of being the most likely to cause death–but it’s exactly how every bailiff in the court room, every cop in the city, county, state, country, was trained.

Any questions?

Good Guy With a Gun Heralded a Hero by Arlington Police, Patrons

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By Jenn Jacques
Bearing Arms
May 4, 2017

Police in Arlington, TX are praising the swift action of a concealed carry permit holder who stepped up to eliminate a threat in a local restaurant Wednesday night.

Authorities say the gunman walked into Zona Caliente, in the 6500 block of South Cooper Street, about 6:15 p.m. and fatally shot 37-year-old Cesar Perez of Duncanville, the bar’s manager, Arlington police spokesman Christopher Cook said.

Authorities later found two loaded guns and two knives on Jones, Cook said.

“We do believe he had the capacity to do much greater harm,” Cook said.

Witnesses told police the gunman entered the establishment and immediately began yelling incoherently at patrons.

“People didn’t know who he was yelling at,” Cook said.

Those same witnesses saw Perez trying to have a conversation with the man to calm him down before he was shot and killed.

That’s when a patron with a concealed carry permit told his wife to get down as he drew his weapon and eliminated the gunman, preventing further loss of life.

“After he was struck once, the suspect started shooting at the front door,” Cook told the Arlington Voice. “We know people were trying to escape, but we’re not sure if he was just trying to harm others.”

Cook said the customer, who was dining with his wife, “prevented further loss of life.”

The customer, who has not been identified, was carrying a handgun under the Texas concealed handgun license program, Cook later confirmed.

“We’re treating the good guy as sort of a hero,” Cook said.

In a statement, Arlington PD said: “This customer was armed with a handgun and engaged the shooter by firing his weapon towards the suspect, striking him. The suspect was pronounced deceased at the scene. It is too early to determine a motive or whether the suspect knew the employee.”

FBI Report NICS Checks on April Gun Sales Contradict MSM’s Claims

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By Jenn Jacques
Bearing Arms
May 5, 2017

Much to the mainstream media’s chagrin, the FBI’s report on the number of NICS checks conducted on gun sales in April contradicts their claim that the firearms industry is experiencing a “Trump slump” in 2017.

An impressive 2,045,564 background checks were conducted last month, extending 2017’s increase in gun sales nationally. In fact, the report shows April 2017 held the second biggest number of FBI background checks for the month ever.

Following the release of the FBI’s report, the NSSF released the following:

The April 2017 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is an increase of 0.04 percent compared to the April 2016 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,111,205. For comparison, the unadjusted April 2017 FBI NICS figure of 2,037,180 reflects a 4.6 percent decrease from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2,135,909 in April 2016.

nssf-nics-april-2017

According to the FBI report, April numbers were higher by only 100,000 in 2016 leading up to the presidential election in November, squashing the media’s assertion that gun sales have slowed since voters rejected anti-gun candidate Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House.

“As we noted previously, sales are come off the peak of 2016 which was a record year for sales but the valley floor is higher,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “There are more gun owners today – many of them first time buyers – than ever before. While the number guns in the hands of law abiding Americans has never been higher we continue to see crime and accidents are at record lows.”

Gun sales may be staying strong in part due to an increase in constitutional carry laws passing, in increase in concealed carry permit applications, and the steady influx in women and African-Americans embracing their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.

Rant of the Week: New York Times – Make My Day

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By David Lombardo
Bearing Arms
April 28, 2017

Go ahead, New York Times, make my day! If only that would really happen but the truth is The Times Editorial staff is principally composed of dogmatic, effete, progressive liberal, anti-gun ideologues. The Times editorial staff is self-righteous to the point they hold John Q. Public’s opinion in contempt. You think I’m making this up?

Liz Spayd captured the Times editorial board’s demagoguery in a November 10, 2016 New York Times article. Spayd, who had left her editor and correspondent job the previous July, related to Michael Cieply, the article’s author, about when she joined the Times and her surprise at its editorial perspective.

Spayd is quoted as saying, “The bigger shock came on being told, at least twice, by Times editors who were describing the paper’s daily Page One meeting: ‘We set the agenda for the country in that room.”

So much for the concept of a Fourth Estate keeping John Q. informed and safe from the potential of a government out of control. The Times’ position on gun control is a classic example of the “setting the agenda for the country” philosophy. It is the tail wagging the dog; facts be damned. The Times is committed to an America devoid of firearms for any purpose at all. No hunting, no recreational shooting, no home protection, no concealed carry and God forbid, certainly no ability to stand up to an oppressive government. They leave no stone unturned when it comes to discrediting guns, gun owners and anything that promotes them.

In “The N.R.A. Says, Go Ahead, Make My Fantasy,” an April 24th Times article, the author takes aim at the NRA’s National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, Virginia. The writer, Francis X. Clines, doesn’t try to hide his disdain for the museum’s support for the Second Amendment. Clines commented on a life size poster figure of John Wayne holding a Winchester carbine and ready to take on the bad guys.

“He was about to deliver blazing fantasies of triumphant gunfire that would leave them dead in the dust. It’s no wonder modern Florida legislators could not resist protecting actual shooters who draw and fire like John Wayne as guilt-free, “stand-your-ground” defenders,” he wrote, and “Why is there no stream of gripping films about the thousands of troubled Americans with easy access to guns who can lethally act out their darkest grievances on family and society day after day?”

Really? Well, why hasn’t there been a New York Times article that points out two-thirds of the nation’s homicides occur in five percent of the 3,143 counties and county-equivalents? Where is the New York Times article explaining that those counties are concentrated around major cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Detroit and New York; cities that have long-standing Democratic rule?

An April 25th Washington Times article citing a Crime Prevention Research Center study put today’s violence in perspective. In it, John Lott, the author of the study, said, “You have over half the murders in the United States taking place in two percent of the counties.”

Lott uses the term “counties” loosely because violent crime can be in a given neighborhood and even a specific street within a county. David Weisburd, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy at George Mason University, said “Those results shouldn’t be entirely surprising, as other factors like poverty and human activity are also concentrated.”

Additionally, Weisburd noted that in his studies of larger cities, about one percent of the streets produce 25 percent of the crime and about 5 percent of the streets produce 50 percent of the crime. “It’s almost exactly the same concentration in New York, Tel Aviv, Cincinnati and Sacramento,” he said, which brings me to the point.

The bulk of the mainstream press, with the New York Times as its standard-bearer target firearms as the single most significant factor in aggravated assault offenses. According to the Department of Justice 2015 Crime in the U.S. report, the fact is violent crime doesn’t primarily involve firearms. Of the aggravated assault offenses reported in 2015, firearms were used in 24.2%. Over 75 percent of aggravated assaults involved personal weapons such as hands, fists, feet, etc (26.3%), knives and other cutting instruments (18.1%) and all other types of weapons (31.4%).

Finally, an October 2015 study reported in Preventive Medicine, found criminals obtain most of their guns through their social network and personal connections. Rarely is the proximate source either direct purchase from a gun store, or even theft. “This agrees with other, broader studies of incarcerated felons,” it reports.

I’d like to see some New York Times articles reporting these facts. Go ahead New York Times, make my day.

Bloomberg’s Gun Control Rally Against NRA Fizzles In Atlanta

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By Bob Owens
Bearing Arms
April 29, 2017

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Michale Bloomberg’s purchased gun control groups Mom’s Demand Action and Everytown promised to “confront” the National Rifle Association in Atlanta (GA) during the NRA’s Annual Meetings and Exhibits.

It was a less than impressive event.

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According to an officer providing security at the event, Mom’s Demand and Everytown brought just 75-100 people to Woodruff Park to “confront” the NRA, at a venue 7/10ths of a mile away from the Annual Meetings.

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The twinned gun control groups appear to have attempted to pad their numbers by handing out tee shirts to the many homeless people inhabiting the park, though most of them seemed indifferent.

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This is the fourth year in a row that Bloomberg’s gun control groups have failed to draw a sizable crowd. In contrast, the National Rifle Association’s Annual Meetings are expected to draw as many as 80,000 attendees to their pro-liberty event.

CMPD Officer Who Shot Keith Lamont Scott Cleared Of All Wrong-Doing

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By Bob Owens
Bearing Arms
April 21, 2017

The CMPD officer who fatally shot armed felon Keith Scott in Charlotte last fall when Scott refused to drop the stolen pistol in his hand has been completely exonerated.

Officer Brentley Vinson was justified in killing Scott during a confrontation outside a University City apartment complex Sept. 20, says a letter the department sent to Scott’s widow.

Police have said officers spotted Scott, 43, in a SUV with marijuana and a gun. Vinson told investigators he shot because he feared for his life and the lives of other officers on the scene.

Following Scott’s death, riots and street demonstrations roiled Charlotte, prompted dozens of arrests and pushed Gov. Pat McCrory to declare a state of emergency. Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray previously ruled that the shooting was legally justified and that Vinson would not face criminal charges.

But protesters and some law enforcement experts question whether CMPD unnecessarily resorted to deadly force against a person with a traumatic brain injury that made it difficult for him to follow directions. They also argue that Scott was sitting alone in the SUV and did not appear to pose a threat to anyone before police approached him.

As a result of CMPD’s internal findings, Vinson won’t face termination, suspension or other severe discipline stemming from the shooting.

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Officer Vinson fired to protect his fellow officers after  Scott refused to drop his weapon after repeated warnings. He violated no laws, not policies in a justifiable use of deadly force.

Perhaps I’m being a bit to critical and logical for some, but if I had a family member with a traumatic brain injury that reduced his cognitive function, I’m pretty sure that I wouldn’t let him or her wander around with a gun in public. This would go double if he was a convicted felon with a history of violent criminal complaints against him even prior to the injury.

After “Berkeley Beat-Down,” Antifa Wants Combat Training, Guns

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By Bob Owens
Bearing Arms
April 20, 2017

After suffering what can only be described as a complete route after attacking a march of Trump supporters in Berkeley (CA) this past weekend, violent left wing “Antifa” (self-proclaimed anti-fascists) radical are preparing for war.

Last week Trump supporters and leftist social justice warriors met on the political field of battle in Berkeley, California. Words were exchanged, as were punches. And while an alt-right leader was punched in the face, by all accounts even the social justice warriors admit that they got a major beat-down.

This prompted a reddit discussion among the left’s tolerant resistance movement, with many asking how they can more effectively go to war against anyone who disagrees with their social, political, and economic views.

The anti-Trump protesters at the rally were ill-prepared for what they came to Berkeley to confront and now they are trying to figure out ways to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

In short, as predicted, they are turning to militancy and mob action by mobilizing individuals and groups to attend combat training seminars, acquiring better equipment like baseball bats and helmets, and of course, if things really go bad… guns.

The comment thread is interesting, especially the following exchanges.

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A friend in the firearms industry who tracks both the far left and the far right compares the violent protests and counter-protests we’ve been seeing since the middle of the 2016 election cycle to two junior varsity teams slugging it out; poorly trained, poorly equipped, poorly organized, and generally clueless fisticuffs from activists who have a great deal of anger and enthusiasm, but not much in the way of skill.

He predicted more than four months ago that the “junior varsity” wasn’t going to remain on the proverbial field much longer, and that it was only a matter of time before both the alt-right and alt-left begin arming themselves with real weapons, start seeking out combatives training, and start organizing in a more effective and militaristic manner for armed combat against their opposition.

Once the “varsity” comes out to play with edged weapons, firearms, and military tactics, these clashes are going to have the potential to turn incredibly violent, very quickly. It is not unreasonable to imagine a scenario where one side or the other starts losing one of these skirmishes, and then opens fire. If both sides are armed, and begin firing, we could be looking at a scenario where we’re no longer seeing bloody noses and watering eyes, but fatalities and serious injuries.

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