A Geek With Guns

Chronicling the depravities of the State.

Archive for the ‘You’re Doing it Right’ tag

Using Government Programs Against Themselves for Fun and Profit

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I always enjoy it when government agencies give us little people enough rope to hang them with. In the pursuit of disarming as many people as possible, many police departments throughout the country host gun “buy back” (I’m putting the term in quotes because one cannot buy back something that they didn’t previously own, which makes the term utter nonsense) programs where people are offered a pittance in exchange for any firearms. Oftentimes these “buy backs” are done in a no questions asked manner, which means a murderer could turn in a firearm they used to murder somebody and not only would the evidence be destroyed by the police but the murderer would also receive some amount of payment. Win-win!

Fortunately, gun owners have identified a fatal flaw in this “buy backs.” Since the law enforces hosting these events will pay for any firearm, “buy backs” are great places to turn broken or cheap homemade firearms into cash for other uses:

GRAND CROSSING — A gun rights group plans to use its profits from a Chicago Police “gun buyback” event to send children aged 10 to 16 to a shooting camp hosted by the National Rifle Association.

[…]

Gun turn-ins are joint efforts between the Chicago Police Department and community organizations and are intended to be used to “get guns off the street,” said Anthony Guglielmi, a Chicago Police spokesman. Community members can bring in guns and give them to the police in exchange for $100.

The guns Boch turns in at the events are “mostly scrap,” he said: They’re usually old and unusable, but even the newer ones that the Guns Save Life members turned in were all “broken down, all non-firing, missing parts and pieces.” Some appeared to have been through fires or rusted beyond use, he said.

[…]

Boch said his organization’s members have gone to buybacks in and around the city for years. He estimates they’ve made about $12,000 from various buybacks over the years, and he dismissed the trade-in events as “symbolism over substance.”

I love the fact that money donated by a gun control organization is being used to teach children how to shoot firearms. That’s adding insult to injury.

Gun control advocates will, of course, flip out about this and claim that gun owners are interfering with programs to make communities safer by getting dangerous guns off of the streets. To that I will say two things. First, “buy backs” don’t get dangerous guns off of the street. Dangerous guns are those in the hands of people who would use them against other humans beings outside of self-defense. No criminal is going to turn their primary source of income in for a measly $100 and no law enforcer is going to turn in their guns to the very program that they’re running. Second, if your tactic is so poorly thought out that it can be exploited this easily, it should exploited. It’s foolish to think that your opponent is going subsidize you by not exploiting your stupidity and poor planning.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 21st, 2018 at 11:00 am

A Proper Response

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I’m of the opinion that everybody should have the best means available to them to defend themselves. I believe having the best means of self-defense available is especially important for those who may face violence because of who they are. People who fall under the LGBT label, for example, have a higher chance of being attacked, which is why stories like this warm my heart:

“I don’t want to get beaten to death, stabbed and burnt alive,” a slight woman with long blond hair and a checked shirt says. “I want a gun to feel equal.”

She is a member of one of the United States’ fastest-growing gun clubs, the jauntily named Pink Pistols.

Two years after the massacre at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, gay, lesbian and transgender Americans are nervous. According to the Human Rights Center (HRC), a US LGBTI advocacy group, 52 gay people were murdered in the US last year because of their sexuality, and 28 transgender people met the same fate.

Of course, gun control advocates will say that these individuals shouldn’t need a means of self-defense. I do agree with that sentiment. However, I don’t believe that people should operate under ideas of what they believe should or shouldn’t be the case, they should operate under what is the case. What is the case is that there are people who will attack and even murder individuals for their sexuality and gender identity. Furthermore, if individuals who fall under the LGBT umbrella continue to arm themselves, they will likely create an environment where they are less likely to be attacked.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 21st, 2018 at 10:30 am

Points for Honesty

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The United States has announced its departure from the United Nations Human Rights Council:

After more than a year of complaints and warnings — some subtle and others a little less so — the Trump administration has announced that the United States is withdrawing from the United Nations Human Rights Council. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley announced the decision in a joint statement Tuesday.

As a violator of human rights, it’s nice to see the United States being a bit more honest about itself.

Seriously though, the Human Rights Council has been and remains a joke. The best punchline of this joke in recent years was the appointment of Saudi Arabia to a major panel. While the United States commonly violates what many consider to be basic human rights, Saudi Arabia takes matters to a whole new level. But what can anybody expect from a government made up exclusively of other governments?

What will be the aftermath of this decision? In all likelihood, nothing. What modern human rights abuses that have been perpetrated by the United States have been done during its council membership. When one considers that and considers many of the other nations that are allowed membership to the council, one can only assume that being a member doesn’t require abiding by any of the council’s decision. The council, like the United Nations in general, is toothless. Since it’s toothless, continued membership wouldn’t dissuade the United States from perpetrating additional human rights abuses even if it remained on the council.

This decision is so inconsequential that it shoudn’t even be newsworthy.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 20th, 2018 at 11:00 am

Posted in Politics

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Romanes Eunt Domus

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A United States court decided that one cannot consent to a cop who is conversing with you through a commonly unserviceable translation utility:

Imagine you’re driving in a foreign country and a police officer stops you on the road. You don’t speak the cop’s language and they don’t speak yours, so a halting exchange ensues using a laptop and Google Translate. You’re not always sure what the officer is asking, and you end up agreeing to something you didn’t quite understand, and are arrested.

Translating human language is difficult, which is why it still remains a common target for satire. Anybody who has used Google Translate for a language about which they’re even moderately knowledgeable knows that it has severe limitations. While it can oftentimes provide you the gist of whatever is being translated, it’s a far cry from accurate. If you want to see this in action, translate something from one language to another then take the result and translate it back to the original language. The meaning may be preserved the first time, although even that’s unlikely, but if you keep doing this for a few iterations you’ll end up with some hilarious nonsensical arrangement of letters.

Needless to say, if a cop is using Google Translate to communicate that they’re arresting you, you have abundant evidence with which to argue that you had no idea what the officer was trying to communicate to you.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 19th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Some Days Aren’t Your Days

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Some days are destined to not be your days. That’s probably how Christopher Raymond Hill felt a few days ago:

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (WSVN) — Police say a man who tried to carjack two people was thwarted after the victims both pulled out guns to protect themselves.

What kind of America do I want to live in? One where a carjacker tries to carjack two separate vehicles and gets a gun pulled on him by both would-be victims.

It’s also worth noting that Florida has castle doctrine. According to gun control advocates, castle doctrine leads to the streets overflowing with blood due to all of the people legally shooting each other. Even though Hill was posing an immediate threat to the lives of the people he was trying to carjack, neither one of them gunned him down. Despite what gun control advocates often claim, most people aren’t looking for an excuse to gun another human being down. In fact most people seem to prefer avoiding violence if necessary. It is only when pushed into a corner that most people are likely to retaliate violently and even then the general preference appears to be avoiding violence is possible.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 14th, 2018 at 10:30 am

Bizzaro Earth

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At some point in the past I must have fallen through an interdimensional portal because the universe I’m currently occupying is rather bizarre.

The good news is that Donald Trump can finally claim an accomplishment during his time in office. He actually met Kim Jong-un and had an apparently friendly talk with the North Korean leader that concluded with an agreement:

US President Donald Trump says his historic talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un that ended in a joint agreement were “tremendous”.

The signed document includes a pledge from Mr Kim to rid the Korean peninsula of nuclear weapons.

But in an extraordinary media conference later, Mr Trump announced details not in the paper.

He said he would halt US military exercises in South Korea, something widely seen as a concession.

Of course the hawks have to shit all over this by claiming that agreeing not to hold military exercises in South Korea is capitulating. But agreements are about giving and taking and if agreement not to play war games in South Korea leads to a potential reduction in nuclear weapons, that’s not a bad trade off.

Now for the more bizarre, Dennis Rodman:

NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman gave an emotional, bizarre TV interview on Tuesday reacting to the highly anticipated summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Wearing a red “Make America Great Again” hat and sunglasses, Rodman, who has personally visited North Korea multiple times, spoke for roughly 20 minutes about his relationship with Kim and his expectations for the historic meeting between the two leaders as it got underway in Singapore. He began to cry about halfway through the interview, periodically dabbing his nose with a tissue.

Who would have thought that the most public American to meet with Kim Jong-un until the recent South Korean and United States summits would be a basketball star knowing for his eccentricities? In all likelihood, his meetings with Kim Jong-un played a not insignificant part in building the foundation for both summits.

While this universe is bizarre, it is damn interesting.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 12th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Posted in Politics

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The Ideal Officer

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There is a slight amount of controversy in Minneapolis because a video was released showing a Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) officer napping in uniform in his patrol car:

The Minneapolis Police Department has launched an internal affairs investigation after video surfaced of a uniformed officer who appeared to be nodding off in a marked squad car.

A South Minneapolis resident, who recorded the act, said it was at 12:26 a.m. Saturday morning. A friend of the woman said she was driving home and noticed the police car, parked on Ogema Place, with an officer alone inside, and his head bobbing back and forth as if sleeping in the high-crime area.

I’ll be totally honest and say that I would far rather see this kind of behavior from MPD officers than the usual controversies involving unarmed individuals, sometimes in handcuffs, ending up summarily executed.

The officer in question really is the ideal officer in my book. Instead of creating a bunch of busywork or harassing innocent individuals, he decided to nod off. While it’s true that he was probably drawing a paycheck at the time, the fact that he wans’t hurting anybody automatically puts the money to better use than it would have been if he was harassing innocent individuals. Admittedly, that’s a very low bar to set for judging an officer’s actions but MPD has done a fantastic job of setting the bar low.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 31st, 2018 at 10:30 am

Once in a While the Nazgûl Toss Us a Bone

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Once in a while the Nazgûl toss us a bone. This is probably because you have to allow the plebeians to win once in a while to maintain the appearance of legitimacy. Whatever their motivation, eight of the nine muumuu clad Supreme Court judges decided that police do need a warrant to search your property:

In an 8-to-1 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police in Virginia violated the Fourth Amendment by walking onto the driveway of home in order to peek under a tarp that was covering a stolen motorcycle, as the Justices decided the officer had run afoul of the Constitution by engaging in a warrantless search.

The court’s majority said “a parking patio or carport into which an officer can see from the street is no less entitled to protection from trespass and a warrantless search than a fully enclosed garage.

In any sane word this case wouldn’t have had to reach the Supreme Court. All of the lower courts would have agreed that Fourth Amendment protections against warrantless searches extend to the entirety of your property, not just the property behind a locked door. If that wasn’t the case, farmers would have little protection against warrantless searches since much of their property generally lies outside of buildings.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 30th, 2018 at 10:30 am

I’ve Been Told this Never Happens

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Whenever a gun control advocate is demanding that innocent gun owners be punished after a mass shooting, gun rights advocates point out that individuals carrying guns are the best defense against mass shootings. Usually this results in the gun control advocate claiming that such an event never happens:

An armed citizen gunned down a shooter at an Oklahoma City restaurant on Thursday, killing him, police said.

A man walked into Louie’s Grill & Bar and opened fire, striking two people. As the gunman was fleeing the scene, a bystander armed with a pistol confronted the shooter and fatally shot him outside the restaurant, Oklahoma City Police Captain Bo Mathews told reporters.

“Right now, all I know is that it was just a good Samaritan that was there and looks like he took the right measures to be able to put an end to a terrible, terrible incident,” Mathews said.

Since it’s CNN, I’m not surprised that the article used the verbiage “gunned down” but the fact that CNN ran this story at all is a bit surprisingly.

The key to reducing casualties in a mass shooting scenario is response time. The sooner armed resistance can be made against the shooter, the sooner the shooter will either kill themselves (a very common result in mass shooting scenarios) or disregard bystanders as they fight for their life. The fastest possible response time comes from somebody at the location when the shooting begins, which means the best way to decrease the number of casualties caused by a mass shooter is to allow individuals to carry a firearm on their person so that there’s a higher probability of an armed individual being at the location when the shooting starts.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 25th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Open Textbooks

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I enjoy helping individuals educate themselves. In pursuit of this goal I try to find sources of free educational material and share them with as many people as possible. Recently I stumbled across the Open Culture website, which has a page listing freely available textbooks.

I haven’t had an opportunity to dig through all of the listed textbooks nor am I qualified to determine the accuracy of the material in many of the listed books. However, of the few textbooks I have perused, they appear to be good quality and were written by credentialed professors.

Feel free to go through the list and download anything that piques your interest.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 1st, 2018 at 10:30 am