Summer Doldrums

If it seems like it has been a while since I wrote anything…I guess it has been. But to be perfectly honest, I’ve been having a hard time finding anything to get excited about when it comes to gun rights these days.



I suppose I could be “glass half-full” about it. Though there are some anti-gun threats in some of the states, there isn’t any realistic threat to gun rights at the federal level right now. That is certainly a great improvement over what went on over the last eight years, and could have happened had last year’s election turned out differently. And while groups like Michael Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action continue to flail away at gun rights, public opinion polls and gun sales stats emphasize just how out of step they are with most of America, and their efforts reliably fail at a national level.

If you like the status quo, I guess there isn’t a whole lot to gripe about.

But if you find the status quo unsatisfactory (as I do), then the glass is most definitely half-empty. Here we sit, seven months into an administration which arguably has in their hands more power to push back anti-gun legislation and regulation than any administration in over a decade, and they have accomplished next to nothing. The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (H.R. 38), the Hearing Protection Act (H.R. 367), and their companion bills in the Senate, have sat and languished in committee since January. And besides these two prominent pieces of legislation, others which have been introduced to reduce or eliminate “gun-free” zones or to roll back restrictions on interstate firearms purchase have gone completely quiet. Meanwhile, politicians who campaigned on promises of positive action on gun rights simply propose half-measures on reciprocity designed to benefit themselves, and squabble about what new version of Obamacare they’re going to pass.

So gun rights sit stagnant in the doldrums of summer. Nothing moves…like a mass of summertime hot air…centered over Washington, D.C.


“Hey, Washington! Less hot air…more cool breeze!”

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One thought on “Summer Doldrums”

  1. I have to agree. There was some reason for excitement at the beginning of the year, but everything seems to have stalled out.
    I do want to share one thing, just as an observation. I was in a Gander Mountain gunshop maybe two weeks ago. They are going out of business, and had just announced all firearms 40% off.
    I was looking around at some shotguns, when I heard a commotion. A man was shouting at one of the clerks. He soon started swearing, and threatening, and it was getting pretty nasty. He was angry because the shop would not sell him the four guns he had picked out.
    The clerk told him that certain flags indicated he might be a straw buyer. He was told that his behavior, photographing guns with his cell phone, making phone calls while looking the guns over, and then picking out guns after phone calls had been returned, were consistent with straw buying. The purchaser loudly denied this, and insisted that he was merely asking his gun savvy friends if he should buy these guns for himself. The guy refused to leave, when told to, and started shouting at the rest of us.
    He then insisted that he was being denied his Second Amendment rights because he was black, and began to point his finger and deride some of the white customers in the store. Due to the sale, the store was quite full, and I could immediately see the shift from curiosity to disgust and hostility, among the white customers – including myself. His credibility had just evaporated.
    While I understand the guy’s frustration (I was also there looking for good deals on firearms), there had to be a better way to handle this. Unable to read minds, I don’t know if race had any part to play in this; but there are four things I want to mention:
    I saw at least three other black men leave the shop with firearms while I was there.
    I would have been suspicious too, of the cellphone activity.
    Two local gun shops have recently been sued over straw buying.
    Even if the guy was being truthful, do we want such a hothead to have four new guns?
    I am white, so I may see things differently, though I hope not too differently – I mean, something is either right or it isn’t. This might be something to write about, from a black man’s perspective. I have been hearing some grumbles that the NRA does nor properly represent or respect black gun owners, that black shooters do not feel welcome among traditional shooting circles, and that legal CCW is not respected by police in the same way it is for whites who carry. So was this guy being a paranoid jerk, throwing a tantrum, and playing the race card, or are things still that bad?

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