NRA and Divergent Thoughts

There are conflicted accounts on how well or how bad things are in the National Rifle Association.

Those that want it’s demise cheer at the ambiguity, infighting and mess it has become accustomed to.  I am connected to those inside and those that used to be.  Where do we go from here?  Here are two post I hijacked from articles sent to me.  One was sent to me from former NRA lobbyist Richard Feldman and the second one is from one of the list I am on ala Jeff Knox.

 

N.R.A. Sues Contractor Behind NRATV

It’s the N.R.A. versus NRATV.

The National Rifle Association sued one of its largest and most enduring contractors late last week and raised concerns about the contractor’s relationship to the association’s own president, Oliver North, in a stunning breach within the normally buttoned-up organization.

The suit was filed late Friday by the N.R.A. in Virginia, where it is based, against Ackerman McQueen, the Oklahoma ad firm that operates NRATV, the group’s incendiary online media arm. The suit asserts that Ackerman has concealed details from the N.R.A. about how the company is spending the roughly $40 million that it and its affiliates receive annually from the association.

The suit creates uncertainty about Mr. North’s future at the organization. And it leaves the future of NRATV in doubt, given the new acrimony in the Ackerman relationship.

Since Ackerman created NRATV in 2016, it has often been “perceived by the public as the voice of the N.R.A.,” according to the rifle association’s complaint. It has also taken on an apocalyptic tone, warning of race wars, calling for a march on the Federal Bureau of Investigation and portraying the talking trains in the children’s show “Thomas & Friends” in Ku Klux Klan hoods.

The New York Times reported this year that two prominent N.R.A. board members were among those voicing alarm inside the association that NRATV was often straying beyond gun rights. The Times article also revealed that Ackerman had a previously undisclosed financial relationship with Mr. North.

The association is untangling broader problems as well, including a legal fight in New York with the administration of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo over an insurance program the N.R.A. offers to gun owners. The new state attorney general, Letitia James, has also repeatedly threatened to investigate the tax-exempt status of the organization, which was incorporated in New York.

Facing this regulatory backdrop, the association began a review of its financial relationships with hundreds of vendors in August to ensure that it was in compliance with best practices.

The N.R.A. complaint alleges that Ackerman refused to turn over a number of financial records, including those detailing out-of-pocket expenses “that lacked meaningful documentation of N.R.A. approvals, receipts or other support.” The association also wants documents that it says could allay its concern that it was being invoiced for the full salaries of Ackerman employees who also did work for other Ackerman clients. In addition, the complaint alleges that Ackerman has refused to provide data about NRATV’s unique visitors and various other performance measures.

“The N.R.A.’s patience has run out,” the suit says.

Ackerman, in a statement, sharply disputed the contentions in the lawsuit, whose filing was earlier reported by The Wall Street Journal.

“During a three-week review, an N.R.A. forensic auditing firm received every single piece of information they [the N.R.A.] requested,” the statement said. “Further, the N.R.A. has had consistent access to any and all documents regarding NRATV analytics. Despite the representation set forth in their lawsuit, the N.R.A. had the personnel contract they claim AM withheld last week before they filed their lawsuit.”

The complaint details a peculiar standoff with Ackerman over Mr. North, who took over as president last year. The N.R.A. claims it was aware that Mr. North had a contract to act as the host of a web series for Ackerman, but that Ackerman has refused to provide a copy of the contract for nearly six months. Additionally, Mr. North’s counsel told the N.R.A. that “he could only disclose a copy of the contract” if Ackerman said he could, the suit says.

Subsequently, Ackerman allowed the N.R.A.’s general counsel to view the contract but not keep a copy; the viewing added to N.R.A. concerns that it had not previously received an accurate summary of the document. The association was also concerned that Mr. North’s relationship to Ackerman could “supersede his duties to the N.R.A.”

A standoff persists over additional details about the relationship, according to the complaint.

The lawsuit is further complicated by family ties. The N.R.A.’s outside lawyer, William A. Brewer III, is the son-in-law of Angus McQueen, a co-chief executive of Ackerman, and the brother-in-law of Revan McQueen, its chief executive. Ackerman called the relationships an “irreconcilable conflict of interest” and said some kind of family dispute “pervades the Brewer firm’s dealings with Ackerman McQueen.”

Travis Carter, a spokesman for Mr. Brewer’s law firm, said “the familial relationship” had “no bearing whatsoever on the N.R.A.’s litigation strategy.” He added, “Any suggestion to the contrary is contrived and a red herring.”

The suit culminates the fracturing of a more than three-decade relationship between Ackerman and the N.R.A., going back to the shaping of such memorable lines as Charlton Heston’s proclaiming that his gun would have to be pried “from my cold, dead hands.” Wayne LaPierre, the longtime chief executive of the N.R.A., had previously been a steadfast champion of the Ackerman relationship.

“I think it says something about Wayne’s character, even though he’s had a long-term working business relationship with a vendor, he’s willing to do what is right and necessary for the N.R.A. and its members,” said Todd Rathner, a board member of the rifle association.

Joel Friedman, another board member, said he was dismayed that the documents had not been turned over.

“It leaves you questioning, and you can come up with all these potential different scenarios as to why, but none of them are good,” he said.

“My mind goes to: Are they overcharging us? That’s one,” he added. “Two, are there things charged to us that were not part of the contract? Then, No. 3, has there been a misallocation of personnel?”

Can you spell “FOOD FIGHT”?

And now from Jeff Knox

Practical Steps Toward Improving the NRA

(February 5, 2019) Over the years, I have often been pretty critical of the NRA and its leadership team. Even though I try to make a point of expressing my support for the organization and its mission, there are always some who see my criticism as an attack, and an attempt to tear down the organization. In this column, rather than simply pointing at the flaws and failures of the association, I want to address some practical and reasonable solutions and expectations.

It is unreasonable and unrealistic to think that a 147-year old, $300 million plus, per year organization, with an elected board of 76 deeply entrenched directors, would or could suddenly shift course and completely revamp the way they do business. Even the famous Cincinnati Revolt in 1977, which was a ground-shaking event, only resulted in only minor changes in the long-term operations of the organization – and years of wrangling for power and control. Another result of the Cincinnati Revolt, was the inevitable restructuring of the rules to make sure that nothing like it could ever happen again. That started with the revolutionaries, putting up defenses against a counter-revolution, and then was continued by the “Old Guard” as they slowly regained power. Today, virtually all of the reforms of Cincinnati have been reversed or modified beyond recognition.

So, with all of the problems that the NRA is currently facing: A $30 million deficit, declining revenue and membership numbers, legal assaults and much frustration over their Carry Guard insurance and training program, accusations of illegal campaign spending, and suggestions of improper dealings with Russian agents, and a large segment of the membership upset over what they see as capitulation on core issues… What would be realistic expectations for reforms at NRA?

To begin with, the Board of Directors needs to establish very clear guidance to the Executive Vice President and staff to ensure that every communication, every policy, every strategy, and anything else that comes out of the organization is consistent with the core values and principles of the association and the Second Amendment. This should be backed up by an oversight subcommittee of the Board, composed of Second Amendment purists who will always place principles over politics. Too often, it seems that the political operatives are driving the boat, leaving principles behind in the name of pragmatism. Closer oversight from some purists on the Board would go a long way toward solving this problem.

Next, the Board must review the audit processes that should be in place to ensure full compliance with all state and federal fundraising and political spending laws and regulations. Everyone at NRA should be very aware that everything they do will be scrutinized by regulators, reporters, and political operatives looking for any irregularity or impropriety. With that awareness, it is totally inexcusable that there should be even the slightest hint or appearance of the organization straying from the straight and narrow. We know that accusations will always be thrown at us, so we must be sure that we are absolutely scrupulous and beyond reproach in all of our dealings.

Stories that the NRA accepted large donations from Russian citizens, and then used that money to support a presidential candidate, should be easy to refute. Accusations that the NRA used the same political advertising agencies as candidates they supported – suggesting that they were coordinating independent expenditures with those campaigns – should never even come up, and if they did, NRA should be able to very quickly disprove such accusations, but so far, they have refused to even answer any questions about the matter.

The roll-out of a major new program like NRA Carry Guard should be preceded by thorough examination of the insurance and solicitation laws of every state, to ensure that there would be no conflicts or compliance issues, but that apparently didn’t happen with Carry Guard. There should also have been in-depth discussion with the Training Division and the Board committee that oversees training, along with key training counselors around the country, before such a major training initiative was introduced, but again, that apparently didn’t happen. This has resulted in fines and lawsuits from Insurance Commissioners in several states, and confusion and anger among NRA Instructors. Where was the due diligence that would have avoided these problems? The Board must institute policies and procedures to make sure such mistakes and “bad optics” don’t recur, and those responsible for the blunders must be held accountable.

Next, the Board needs to review all vendor agreements, eliminate any unnecessary programs, and begin transitioning as much as possible back in-house. Currently, the NRA pays over $40 million a year to one PR and Advertising company. They also pay a telemarketing firm something in the neighborhood of $30 million a year, and they list four separate companies just to “advise” them on fundraising, at a total of over $3 million per year – just for advice!

Then there is the issue of executive compensation. While it is not unusual for executives in some major non-profit corporations – such as the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts or the Guggenheim Museum – to receive compensation in excess of $1 million dollars per year, these are typically professional executives who could earn such compensation at any number of similar organizations, and are funded by wealthy patrons and huge endowments. Such is not the case with Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox. They rose to their current positions via internal political maneuvering and being in the right place at the right time. Both would be hard-pressed to find employment in the $200 to $300k range as senior lobbyists in a DC firm, and wouldn’t even be considered for any sort of senior management positions.

The Board should review all executive compensation packages and bring them down to more reasonable levels. NRA executives should not be expected to work for free, but it is simply not right to be paying LaPierre almost a million and a half dollars per year while begging hard-working NRA members for $20 contributions.

The steps suggested here are not dramatic. They would not jeopardize the stability of the organization or damage its political clout in any way, nor would they be costly or difficult. On the contrary, these steps would stabilize the NRA, refocus it on its core missions, establish proper and long-lacking Board oversight of operations, save money, reduce costly mistakes, and restore the faith of members and former members in the NRA’s mission and leadership. These are all things that the NRA Board should have been doing all along, and needs to do now.

But instead of taking these reasonable, rational steps to improve and strengthen the NRA, scuttlebutt inside the organization suggests that the leadership is going to try to “solve” the problems by creating a for-profit entity, out from under the NRA non-profit umbrella and less accessible to the prying eyes of government regulators, nosy reporters, and “disgruntled members” like me. In other words, rather than fixing the problems, they are going to try and hide them from view.

Let’s hope the rumors aren’t true, and that the NRA Board of Directors has the will and integrity to do what needs to be done.

What do you think?

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

Casting Call

Rifle Marksmanship basics

Long-Range Marksmen and Snipers

Attention all listeners and supporters of the Black Man With A Gun Show Podcast:

 

The producers of Top Shot are putting together a team of seasoned snipers and skilled long-range marksmen to co-host a new, unscripted TV series for a major cable network.

On each episode of this exciting, new show, our hosting team will meet a member of the armed forces or law enforcement with an amazing story of marksmanship and attempt to recreate their incredible shot on camera.
If you have the background and ability to recreate impressive, precision shots and the potential to co-host your own TV series, then…

CONTACT THEM TODAY!

Email TopSniperCasting@gmail.com with your name, phone number, a recent photo and a brief description of your qualifications as a long-range marksman or sniper.

Tell’ed you heard from the BlackManWithAGun.com

For more info, please visit: https://www.pilgrimmediagroup.com/casting/snipers

 

Boom!

 

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

The Business of Gun Rights Podcasting

Today many are trying to find as I did how to monetize a brand new medium.  How do you make your hobby a sustainable income stream?  How do you justify the hours spent creating content for the bean counters in your life?

First a disclaimer; if you are doing this as a hobby or altruistic goals to spread the truth about the US Constitution and gun rights then you don’t have to monetize.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I started off that way.  I found out that I needed to monetize to operate.

Before you seek to make money you need to provide good content for a while.

 

Social Media as you see it today came after the Black Man with A Gun Show Podcast formerly known as the Urban Shooter Podcast.  It is hard to imagine promoting your blog or podcast today without Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube but I did.

Like the pro athletes of yesterday that ran miles, suffered concussions, broken bones and made millions less than the stars of today;  I am in that group.

Over the past twelve years I have tried and did a number of things to pay for the bandwidth, hosting, hardware and software use to podcast.

One of the things I have to do better is to promote the people that have supported  me.  I plan to do that better in 2019.

There is an art to promotion, marketing and selling that is not offensive to your audience.  Nobody likes being sold to nonstop.  We are almost used to it but we don’t like it.

For the business owners that may be interested in sponsoring my work in the future here is a snapshot of my statistics for my podcast.

 

 

I also have an customized app that could be co-branded.  It has had over 8K downloads.

 

For my fellow content creators here are a few tips.

As an entrepreneur in the 2A community that has tried a little of everything to be successful I want to share what I found what works in almost every business.

Here are five ways I know a content creator can make money.  It is easier to write than to achieve.

  1. Crowdfunding
  2. Sponsors
  3. Selling products
  4. Affiliates
  5. Services

 

The gun world is pretty cool. The people are interesting. I’ve been a part of it since 1986.

The subject of gun control is evergreen. The topic is political. There is money to be made and unfortunately wasted. Organizations exploit the hell out of it.  We fall for the shenanigans like clockwork.

My first advice to the new business owner  is to find a niche. The riches are in the niches.

Firearms instruction

Know that there are hundreds of instructors coming up and going out. The ones that stick around, have identified their target audience,  and with rifle precision have gone after them. The shotgun approach or just hanging out your “shingle” and waiting for customers doesn’t work well.

Like my grandma used to say, “if you chase two rabbits, you’ll get none.”

To fill a scheduled class for example, all of your clients should be the same. This is not in looks but in what they want from the course. Some can’t be there for one thing and the other for something else. You have to know what they want and give it to them.

One of your challenges  is going to be that your perspective clients don’t know actually what they want. Part of your process has to be to change that. You have to prequalify them.

That way you ain’t wasting your time.

As an instructor you have to keep learning yourself. Don’t be satisfied with just the NRA instructor certification. The NRA did an amazing job marketing their standard but it isn’t the end all.

You will also need to know marketing, basic business, adult learning techniques, and some crisis management. After every shooting, you have the opportunity for a televised or radio interview. You have to learn how to present yourself in a way that you want and not what the media wants. It’s a skill.

You have to be able to critical of yourself and teaching style so you can determine what market is best for you. Believe it or not, everyone is not going to like you. (I know hard to believe isn’t it?) You might be a great fit though for an all-female class, or not. You might work better with law enforcement, or not.

There’s a lot more but I’ll share the rest later.

 

 

Rev. Kenn Blanchard has been a firearms instructor since 1986. He has traveled abroad armed in over thirteen countries protecting diplomats and VIPs. He has trained with the USMC, Navy, US Army, IDF, US State Dept., FLETC and others. He created African American Arms & Instruction, Inc. training security guards, police officers and civilians in first aid, CPR and firearms use. He became a gun rights activist in 1991 and helped five states get concealed carry reform. He is respected in the firearms industry. He created blackmanwithagun.com in 1999. He is the author of Black Man With A Gun: Reloaded and created the podcast in 2007 that now has reached over 2.1 million downloads.

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

Wyoming Women’s Antelope Hunt Scholarship

The Wyoming Women’s Foundation (WYWF)

announced today that its scholarship application for the 2019 Wyoming Women’s Antelope Hunt will open March 1.

WYWF founded the Wyoming Women’s Antelope Hunt in 2013 to create mentorship opportunities for women through a Wyoming tradition of hunting. The event raises funds to support WYWF’s mission, which is to invest in the economic self-sufficiency of women and the future of girls in Wyoming.

The Hunt takes place at the Ranch at Ucross northeast of Buffalo, Wyo. All hunters will be guided by licensed guides on private or public lands within an hour’s drive of the ranch. In the first two years of the event more than 90% of hunters harvested an animal. Hunters can also participate in other outdoor skill-building activities, such as fly fishing, trap shooting and workshops on cooking with wild game.

Scholarships include all license, hunting and guide fees, as well as lodging, meals and post-hunt activities for four days and three nights at the scenic guest ranch. Hunters of all skill levels, including first-time hunters, are welcome to apply. Applicants will be considered from anywhere in the country, but selected applicants must provide their own transportation to the ranch.

To apply, submit an online application by March 15, which includes a 300 word essay on why you would like to participate and what sets you apart from other applicants. Selections will include both seasoned hunters and aspiring hunters who will hunt as mentors and mentees in pairs with other women participants. 8-13 of more than 40 hunting spots will be awarded to scholarship applicants. Event sponsors and Hunt alumna make the scholarship program possible.

Visit www.wyomingwomensantelopehunt.org for more information and to apply.

 

 

About the Wyoming Women’s Foundation

The Wyoming Women’s Foundation is a priority fund of the Wyoming Community Foundation, which granted out over $6 million to nonprofits across the state in 2016. The Women’s Foundation builds on a permanent endowment that will ensure funding to enhance the lives of women and girls in Wyoming for generations to come. It makes grants to organizations that help Wyoming women and girls attain economic self-sufficiency, creates statewide awareness of the barriers to economic self-sufficiency, and supports systems change to eliminate those barriers. Since its inception in 1999, the foundation has invested more than $880,000 into over 100 organizations.
Learn more at www.wywf.org.

 

 

 

 

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

2A in Spanish

Introducing El Segundo Edicto

There is a segment of our great Nation that is not heard from much in the larger gun community.  I hope to change that.  It’s an audacious goal.  I am working with a new friend to launch a pro-gun podcast in Spanish called El Segundo Edicto, our version of The Second Amendment.  I love podcasting and know how to do it right.  The actual language part I am going to rely on my Latino family.  Back in 2009, I started the Latin Gun Owners group on Facebook and got some real brothers to keep it going.  My gift is starting things.

Life happens and I am not sure how successful this will be but we are going to try it.

The gun rights movement is as diverse as America but you won’t see much proof of it in mainstream media. Over the past twenty five years as a firearms instructor and advocate I have become the Ambassador of Diversity Pro Tempore.

The goal is to educate, help spread gun rights, and share the love of the shooting sports to speakers of Spanish in and outside the United States. Americans of Latin orgin, in my opinion are steadfastly ignored in too many circles. They are overlooked in politics and the gun industry. I know Hispanics and Brazilians that are competitive shooters, recreational gun owners, and trainers.

I’m not quite sure where my love of all Spanish and Portuguese people comes from but there are some clues in my past.

My mother would say it was my first crush in kindergarten, or maybe it was me risking my life to date my first girlfriend in high school who was Hispanic. Her father didn’t want her to date till she was 18. Oh I have stories. I grew up in the time of the great War on Drugs. I have lived in Brazil and have spent time in Honduras, El Salvador, Cuba, and Guatemala. My passport may have been stamped in a few other countries too, but you get the picture.

I once had goals to become a DEA agent after college. I watched Miami Vice every Friday even while in police academy. As a gun owner, and activist this was destined that I eventually got around to including a portion of my life nobody knew.

I won’t be the host but will help with production and distribution. I was blessed to find someone that was ready to rock it.

Be on the lookout for “The Second Edict with Carlos Alvarez” podcast (el Segundo Edicto). It’s where 2A meets Telemundo. I’ll be looking for sponsors to help me keep it going.

From the podcast translation

Yes, we are starting a series of programs thanks to Blanchard Productions that has placed its trust in us. And let me introduce myself so that you can see, know, in this beginning of who is speaking to you. I am an American citizen like you who came to this country legally, right?

Because from the place where I come from, Puerto Rico, then, you can already be born with American citizenship, and obviously the influences of everything that is politics and the American system is very noticeable in Puerto Rico, and one of the most interesting things is to be able to have the freedom to do business.

As American citizens we have the freedom to do business, to be able to exercise our constitutional rights, and thanks to that freedom I have been able to prepare myself and have the opportunity to assist families and individuals in various topics, in various areas, including finances, insurances and public policy.

So with that short and small introduction obviously, as a father of four daughters and married for almost 20 years, it takes me to be able to enter into this dynamic that exists, and that the Hispanic community can understand that when we have the opportunity to get to this nation, all American citizens, those who come here legally to our nation, have rights. They have rights, this is much more than the immigration issue that has been exaggeratedly exploited and has not been taken informatively, journalistically speaking, in the best way, and on the contrary, it has been politicized.

Given that case and others, such as the right to free expression, the right to keep and bear arms in this nation and others, is where we are going to assemble and have an honest conversation in these programs that you are going to have the opportunity to listen and that you will also have the opportunity to analyze. After that analysis, possibly be able to give continuity to any relevant topic that has to do with our constitutional rights.

In this case, we are going to be playing well, very close to the constitutional right that all American citizens have regarding what the second amendment is. So, it should be noted that you have to know, by way of introduction, you really have to know how it is that this constitutional right that is so widely spoken in this nation, has come or becomes an important part even at the beginning of the development and the creation of the Republic that is the United States, is a Republic.

….so, my dear friend, thank you for paying attention to this intervention, where our intention will be to keep and informed of the constitutional rights, especially the constitutional right that we have named in the second amendment, and topics that have to do with our freedom as citizens, so until the next time…

CA

 

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

Celebrating the Tie that Binds

Last week we hit the 600 mark on podcast.  I started in the winter of 2006 and have learned a lot about myself, the world and the gun community as a result.

The podcast ties together the friends, instructors, activist, and gun owners I have met since 1991.

I use the show to not only talk about guns, products and politics but to encourage, inspire and entertain this group of patriots, great citizens, and family members using the power of podcasting.

Gun rights activist, firearms instructor, humanitarian and patriot, Rev. Kenn Blanchard is raising money to travel this Spring to meet you, his friends.

 

 

 

This design will be made into a high quality, PVC key chains to sell as mementos to reaching 600 episodes on the Black Man with A Gun Show podcast and being a leader in the grassroots gun community since 1991.

Click here to order yours.  Only $5.50 plus .50 shipping


You can get a tee shirt and other cool stuff at Kenn’s store which also supports his work, and encourages him to fight on without relying on begging corporate sponsors.Power to the People! 
If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

You, Me, and Police Shootings: The Truth

“The Second Amendment is for everyone.” I have to repeat the mantra of fellow former US Marine, gun rights activist, and podcaster Tony Simon.  I know people that don’t realize they are free. They believe that the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights are subjective. They have allowed injustices to occur because they feel that things don’t apply to them.

A right delayed is a right denied – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

But where are we collectively as gun rights advocates when it comes to the recent police shootings of Black Men With Guns?  I had a different draft post before I read this article from The Rolling Stones Magazine.

Here’s an excerpt from The “Good Guy With A Gun” is Never Black.”

The lack of ability to imagine black people as heroes may be one explanation for these shootings. That was one of the countless things that James Baldwin was right about. American fiction is a significant contributor to our ideas of heroism both on the page and onscreen, and as the author both wrote and said in 1965, “It comes as a great shock to see Gary Cooper killing off the Indians, and although you are rooting for Gary Cooper, that the Indians are you.” Regardless of color, we all are trained from an early age not merely to synchronize whiteness and heroism, but are fed narratives that discourage us from forming any other conclusion. Barack Obama wasn’t enough to change that, to say nothing of Lando Calrissian, Roger Murtaugh or Axel Foley. Not even T’Challa from Black Panther or Chris from Get Out. A childhood of seeing men of color as cannon fodder for Clint Eastwood, John Wayne and other assorted Good White Guys With Guns has an effect on folks.

Jamil Smith

This article made me remember that I have been here before.  I have thought many times since 1986 about the possibility of being shot myself by a law enforcement officer even after graduating from the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.  Being pro-gun, African American and a staunch supporter of gun rights doesn’t make me immune.

The accidental death of an African American man in Alabama by a police officer is not news you want to read on Thanksgiving holidays, much less have happen at all.  As a responsible gun owner where should we be in this conversation?

If you are a Black person, the lens in which you look at the recent shootings of Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford Jr, and Jemel Roberson can be different.

I know police are not shooting African Americans for fun and profit.    This stuff still bother us, regardless of color.  Blaming the police broadly is a “cop-out.”

If you are a law enforcement officer  I would dare to say that you hate to hear about this,  knowing that it will make your job even harder than it already is.

Let’s look at the police.  

The police have a difficult job.  They are called to act before all the facts are known in dangerous situations.  They have to basically jump into a crowd of strangers and figure out the good guys from the bad guys.  When they get it wrong someone dies.

Have you ever heard of “Qualified Immunity.”  It is a legal defense where government officials are held harmless if they followed established procedures. It is that established procedure that will be exonerate or incarcerate the police officer in question.  The details won’t make it out of court.  You only will see the drama.  Folks will protest without knowing what was said in court.  Even what you can see on video isn’t ironclad.  There are always circumstances.

I am not excusing anything that has happened.

Police departments that can afford it use simulators to train when to shoot and when not to shoot. This reality based training is extremely useful in exposing weaknesses in police policy and in officer training.  I know for a fact that training is the first thing cut out from a departments budget.  And some people shouldn’t be police officers.

The truth is, you can’t fix stupid.

We hold law enforcement to a different standard but it is not fair.  They are still just people.

The Media

The Media is challenged to report on what will get the most amount of eyes. As consumers, we will change the channel if there is no exciting news. Fear sells.  We like to believe the worst of people before we watch good news so the media broadcasts daily, imagery of dangerous black men, criminals, using and dealing drugs, over-sexed, unemployable, idle and the epitome of death and doom. It is amplified by pop music and underground loving culture and ignorance, that promotes the negative stereotypes.  We have no problem with that.  That is why is it reported on a loop.   It is sensational. Its media worthy.  It divides.  It sells.

Black people have already started the campaign against all police.  That is wrong.

Fear. False Expectation Appearing Real.

 

The racism that everybody always brings up is really based on a fear of loss.  Almost everything we do is based on the fear of loss.  We buy stuff we don’t need because of it.  White supremacy is based on the fear of losing the so-called Whiteprivilege.  Fear of loss touches on almost everything you can name.  This is all because of the psychology of fear.  We are not as free as our Constitution allows.

We fear those different than us.  What was once a defense mechanism is now a flaw.

We are conditioned to fear.  We learn fear.  We are afraid of the unknown. We are afraid that a black man will kill us.  The myth of the predatory Black man has been used to instill fear in whites and to justify their brutality and violence against Black individuals, communities and continents since the 1600’s. The narrative has been passed down from one generation to the next and is still used to underwrite injustice against Black people.

We project this fear.  Have you ever heard of projection?  That is when one accuses someone of having traits they refuse to acknowledge in themselves.

The behavior of people around us also can influence our responses to threats. You ever see people run because everyone else is running?  It is a smart response to crime prevention.

“Fear has a certain contagious feature to it, so the fear in others can elicit fear in ourselves. It’s conditioning.  We come into the world knowing how to be afraid, because our brains have evolved to deal with nature.”

The truth is this is sad.  This has happened before.  Fear and perception cloud our judgements.  Until I started to look “older” I used to cause quite a few people to move fast across the street, lock car doors when I approached or clutch their wallets/purses.  I have been followed in the stores.  I have been accused of “casing” a place while shopping.  This is our society.  I know that all it takes is one bad apple to make us accuse thousands of people in any group.

WTH do we do now?  How can we stop this?  How can we keep our nation together?  How do we stop it from happening tomorrow?

I want to hear your opinions.    But really think about what I said.   The tragic killing of people that scare us, isn’t new.  Don’t restate the problem?   What do you suggest we do to solve this?

 

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

Changing firearm practices within the state of Georgia

ATL Georgia

 

Gun laws in the United States have changed over the years, federally and in many states including Georgia. Of course, the most famous gun law in the country is the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It states that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” However, in 1934, the first piece of legislation to control gun sales was enacted, inspired by outcries over widely-publicized shootings. Further gun control laws passed Congress in 1968, 1993, and 1994, although some major court cases did work to successfully challenge restrictive bans.

Gun control laws are becoming stricter in many parts of the country, but Georgia actually has new laws protecting gun owners’ rights in more locations in the state. Georgia follows federal gun laws, but it does not require permits for long guns or background checks for individual gun sales.

There are many active firearms owners and advocates for gun rights in Georgia, and it is important that they understand how the changing laws affect them.

One of the laws that benefits Georgia gun owners is the Stand Your Ground law. This law aims to protect people who exercise their fundamental right to protect themselves in their own homes. The law is designed to stop people from being charged criminally if they kill an attacker while protecting themselves or another person.

The principle behind the law has long roots in Georgia law. In 1898, the state Supreme Court ruled that people have a right to use deadly force if their own life is in danger. Previously they were required to attempt to escape before deadly force could legally be used.

While the principles may date back over a century, the modern Stand Your Ground law was enacted in 2006, and its constitutionality has been reviewed at a federal level.

Since the law was passed, the number of related deaths has nearly doubled, from 7 annually to 13. The laws are sometimes criticized for promoting violent confrontation rather than de-escalation. More commonly, they are criticized not for their intent but for their application, particularly allegations of racial bias directed at police and prosecutors.

The law applies to anyone who believes his or her life to be in danger. People have the right to kill to defend themselves, and the shooting can be considered a justifiable homicide. However, police and prosecutors may not side with a self-defense claim, so people still may face aggravated assault or even murder charges. The Stand Your Ground law helps criminal defense lawyers for those facing charges to present a strong defense.

Additionally, the law can help crime victims protect their rights. One famous application of the law helped a man subject to an armed carjacking protect his rights after he shot and killed the man who was threatening his life. People can feel more secure about defending themselves and their loved ones when they know there is legislation that backs up their rights.

In 2014, Georgia revised its gun laws to expand protection for gun owners who carry their firearms in public. The Safe Carry Protection Act allows gun owner to bring their firearms to bars, churches, government buildings, airports, and even schools.

Many of the rules are subject to local legislation or a building’s owner, however. In addition, the law eliminated fingerprinting as a requirement for a firearms carry license and prevented the state from maintaining a database of licensed gun owners.

The law can help people to go about their business as gun owners who regularly engage in concealed carry. Rather than needing to lock away their gun where they won’t be able to reach it in an emergency, people will be able to defend themselves during an attack in a bar. In addition, people who go to the airport and forget to leave their gun behind can pick it up later; they won’t face criminal prosecution for a simple mistake.

The most recent update to Georgia’s gun laws is HB 280, passed in 2017. The law allows gun owners to carry on the campuses of public colleges and universities in the state. Bucking the trend toward increased gun control, Georgia’s legislature backed increased rights for the state’s 1-million licensed gun owners.

While licensed owners can carry concealed guns on any university property, they’re still forbidden from carrying in dormitories, sorority or fraternity houses, gated daycare facilities, private offices, and in classrooms with high school students.

Once again, the law prevents law-abiding, gun-owning college students from facing prosecution or disciplinary charges from coming to school with their firearm. In the worst-case scenario, gun owners can use their skill and training to protect others from an armed attacker on campus.

Gun laws are always in flux, and it can be important to consult with a lawyer to better understand your rights, especially if you’ve been involved in a self-defense incident. However, Georgia continues to be a state with strong and expanding protections for the people’s right to bear arms.

 

 

J. Blake Ledbetter is a partner at the law firm of Conoscienti & Ledbetter in Atlanta, Georgia. Mr. Ledbetter possesses significant experience with Uber accident lawsuits and a range of legal issues involving rideshare drivers and riders. Mr. Ledbetter specializes in civil trial practice, specifically in the areas of business law, corporate law, contract law and personal injury law.

 

 

Instagram

My first website was started in 1999 but I didn’t really start blogging till 2007. The social media aspect of growing a community was challenging. It still is tough when you are talking to the same people all the time even though you are trying to grow. Fortunately, none of us has to stay stagnant.

When Instagram first came out I thought it was like a visual version of twitter. I found out that it is a pretty good platform to promote your stuff. I am able to share pictures and videos of what I am doing this week, and find new folks that may be interested in my ever changing mindscape. A visual feed can reflect your brand’s uniqueness and differentiate your business. Instagram is a east place to share feelings, situations through pictures.

To grow your reach though, sometimes you need help. I do. I found a young guy that helps me. He has a method and knows How To Monetize Instagram. If you are interested I suggest you check out the site at https://www.socialnetworkelite.com.

My Instagram is @kennblanchard . It would have been better if I had my trademarked name – blackmanwithagun but another brother has it. connect with me @kennblanchard

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun

Patrick Kilpatrick Professional Bad Guy

The actor known as Patrick Kilpatrick is releasing and new book which will be part of a two volume memoir, DYING FOR LIVING: Sins & Confessions of a Hollywood Villain and Libertine Patriot on Oct. 1, 2018 by Boulevard Books.

I got to meet Patrick when he invited me to the 2010 Hollywood Shotgun Sporting Clays Invitational to benefit City Of Hope Bone Marrow Donor Program at Triple B Shotgun Sporting Park on October 9, 2010 in El Monte, California. It was big deal because I was the ONLY podcaster present back then.  The dude is still at it and maintaining his tireless pace as one of Hollywood’s go-to action villains.

I’m trying to get him interested in helping me with my Solomon Love stories.

Patrick Kilpatrick has played against a spectrum of Hollywood’s leading action heroes including, Tom Cruise, Yun-Fat Chow, Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Caan, Bruce Willis, Steven Segal, Sean Connery, and Jean-Claude Van Damme, to name a few.

I call this professional bad guy a friend.  He is pro-Second Amendment.  He is a native of Virginia.

The Book

Patrick Kilpatrick actor

“For those of you  hoping for unvarnished, inglorious behind-the-scenes and scandalous sagas of Hollywood action, I boldly refer you to my memoirs.”

 

He never served in military but he has looked out for vets. His father was a decorated WWII Underwater Demolition Team hero. He and his publisher Boulevard plan on donating a percentage of his book sales to those who’ve been wounded in service to the country.

He is an articulate guy that loves his country.  DYING FOR LIVING – Sins & Confessions of a Hollywood Villain and Libertine Patriot is going to share some of the behavior Hollywood is known for.

The books’ plot points include murderous bi-polar assaults by an adulterous mother. It has privileged education amidst pastoral splendor and American Revolution patriotism. Also tucked in are bi-racial affairs, indiscriminate promiscuity and incendiary politics … not to mention, a near fatal car accident, motorcycle crashes.  Scribing for nearly every magazine in New York as well as body-guarding the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Grateful Dead, Rod Stewart and more …and my global vision for 21st century America.

Patrick is smart and often as serious as a heart attack but he is good people.  If you see his name on the credits of another movie, or in the book store soon check it out.

 

 

 

 

If you like the podcast, download the free app for it on IOS at http://BlackManWithAGun.org also available in Google Play for Android. You can support this podcast at http://patreon.com/blackmanwithagun