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Cliff Notes: NRA's "9 acres of weaponry that could wipe out a continent. Prepare to get scared."


killings, shootings since Obama took office 2009 guns NRA animated GIF Mass Shooting/Killing incidents since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009 through the time The Atlantic published it on Sept 16, 2013.

My dear friend and mentor, Cliff Schecter, has a new post up; Cliff has given me permission to share his work with you, so I’ll give you the latest edition of what I call Cliff Notes.

He skewers better than a chef at Smokey Joe’s BBQ. He has comedic insights that rival those of our mutual friend, the hilarious Lizz Winstead. He’s sharper than the point on Sarah Palin’s pin head.

Here are a few excerpts from his latest, with permission. Please read the whole thing, because he has way more than I’ve included here. It's about the NRA convention, "nine acres of weaponry that could wipe out a continent."  Cliff calls this one of the most important pieces he's ever written.

These bits and pieces don't do it justice. Please, link over for the entire post titled "Preparing for War in Indianapolis: Inside the NRA Plot to Terrify America":

In a cavernous exhibition hall, as far as the eye can see is all the assault weaponry you’ll need should Red Dawn hit your town. Welcome to the NRA convention—and prepare to get scared.

Church is an important part of the routine, for many. And at the Indianapolis Convention Center on this particular Sunday, an entirely different kind of shrine, where one could purchase such family reading as “Cutting Edge Bullets: Lethal by Design, Proven by Performance.” Or pick up a GSG 110 round rotary magazine—similar to the one used by the movie theater mass murderer in Aurora, Colorado. Or even attend a book signing by admitted serial statutory rapist Ted Nugent.

I’m referring, of course, to the 2014 National Rifle Association Convention. [...]

The NRA had a banner outside the convention center describing it as “9 Acres of Guns & Gear,” and for once it wasn’t exaggerating. [...]

Military-style weaponry of every kind occupied almost every inch of the terrain to my left and right as I began the long trek down each aisle. Not your father’s hunting rifle, for the most part—although there were a few of those here and there—but the kind of arms you use to start a war. Fifty-caliber rifles, which can take down small aircraft. Assault rifles—rebranded “sporting rifles,” in case your sport might be decimating a small village in under a minute. High-capacity magazines of the variety used in so many recent massacres at malls, schools, and universities. [...]

It has embraced this new mission to militarize the streets of America with zeal, scaring the bejesus out of its most faithful adherents with ghost stories about preparing for the breakdown of civilization, to destroy any faith they might have in our democracy or our first responders. You’re all alone, in their telling. Just you and the one thing that’s always faithful: your gun. [...]

LaPierre, Young, and their allies give those in the far-right bubble a completely false sense of our world, when in reality crime rates are steadily falling and the threat of terrorism has receded at least somewhat. That’s with the exception of the easy access any would-be terrorist like the most recent Fort Hood shooter has to military firepower at events such as the NRA convention and stores such as Guns Galore …because of the handiwork of LaPierre and his NRA.

In addition, my dear friend and radio host Nicole Sandler covered this today: Travel Advisory: The United States Is Not Safe:

This article was written and originally posted on Sept 18, 2013. It’s re-posted and slightly updated today, and includes my interview with former Australian Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer, who helped enact gun laws in Australia after a 1996 massacre in which 35 people were slaughtered, and who warned Australians not to travel to the US following last summer’s shooting death of Australian baseball player/college student Christopher Lane.

I strongly urge you to link over and read the post as well as listen to her podcast of her conversation with Fischer, available on the same page.


Gay Relationship Commitment Worse Than Random Killings



An Indiana bakery recently refused to make an anniversary cake for a customer because the event was in honor of a same-sex marriage commitment. It was this couple's 14th anniversary -- which in my book is a strong commitment. How many "straight" relationships last that long?

Putting the legitimacy aside, this bakery refused to make the cake based on their self-professed strong religious beliefs which they claim prohibit them from making a cake that celebrates a lifestyle their religion opposes. Well, they're Catholic and I'm not so sure their religious leader, Pope Francis would draw the line in the sand where these followers have.

So we'll take that and put it aside for a moment. Figuring where religious beliefs begin and just plain bigotry leaves off is a decision for greater minds than mine. The owners of the 111 Cakery, Randy and Trish McGath, insist they've never, in the past, denied service to anyone based upon who they are or their beliefs. Just so long as they're consistent, I think they have an argument. Not a legal one, but a moral one.


Owner Randy McGath further explained, “There is zero hate here.This causes us to do a lot of soul searching. Why are we doing what we do? We want to show the love of Christ. We want to be right with our God, but we also want to show kindness and respect to other people.”

The bakery policies also include also not making custom cakes with messages related to alcohol, drugs and violence.

Well, they have their standards, though putting two same-sex names on a generic anniversary cake shouldn't be challenging these religious bakers' beliefs. It's not like the cake celebrates alcohol, drugs or violence which they say they also would refuse.

Wait a minute... are these flour and frosting tossers actually two hypocrites? Here's a cake they did make:


Call of Duty is one of the most violent video games out there. If that's not celebrating violence, what does? Yet these cretins of cooking, the owners of Cakery 111 defend that cake of violence while refusing two committed, loving gay people the celebration of their love.

And they use religious beliefs as their defense. Bullsh*t is what I call it. Shameful that this hypocritical refusal is not illegal  in Indiana -- at least not yet.


Another school shooting, another study on gun access and risk of homicide, suicide


shooting guns CT

An all too familiar news flash showed up in my inbox today: One dead, one arrested in shooting at Purdue University:

A lone gunman walked into a basement classroom at Purdue University Tuesday, shot and killed one person then calmly walked outside and turned himself in, police said.

And David just posted Police Chief Shoots Himself And Blames His Fleece Jacket.

When I opened my morning Los Angeles Times this morning, I saw this headline: Study takes new look at gun access and risk of homicide, suicide:

People who have ready access to a firearm are almost twice as likely to be killed and three times likelier to commit suicide than those without a gun available in the home or from a neighbor or friend, a new study has concluded. [...]

The United States is thought to have the highest rate of gun ownership of any country, with close to 4 in 10 households owning a firearm. The nation's gun-related homicide rate is higher than that of any other high-income country, and its rate of suicides carried out with a gun exceeds that of any other country that maintains such data. [...]

...Congress passed a law prohibiting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from spending federal funds on research that could be interpreted as promoting or advocating for gun control measures.

We are becoming way too accustomed to news bulletins about school shootings, mass shootings, workplace shootings, "accidental" (negligent) shootings, you name it. And we have seen study after study like the one above that tells us what an unnecessarily violent country we are.

What will it take for this country to wake up? What will it take for gun-toting gun zealots to see the need for common sense legislation that could save lives? WTF is so hard about that?


Police Chief Shoots Himself And Blames His Fleece Jacket



"One Adam-12, One Adam-12, officer down. Suspect described as a fleece jacket. It's armed, dangerous and warm."


A Connersville, Ind. police chief accidentally shot himself in the leg while doing some shopping at a gun store on Saturday, the Indianapolis Star reported.

“I need to pay more attention,” David Counceller said. “I know what the dangers are. It was pure carelessness on my part.”

Now this isn't just some rookie. This is the police chief in Connersville. And here's what I find interesting -- he blames his fleece jacket for the accident. Not his own personal responsibilities of taking all precautions while carrying a loaded weapon in a store. Oh, I amend that to read, a gun shop.

Evidently this "accident" happened while he doing what guys refer to as "dick measuring", pulling out his "weapon" to see how it compared in size to another.

Counceller, who was off-duty at the time, was comparing his 40-caliber Glock handgun with a newer model at Wullf’s Gun Shop. The trouble began when he began to holster his weapon.

“It got tangled in my clothing,” he added, as quoted by the Star. “I was wearing a sweatshirt and a fleece jacket. I felt (the gun) go in the holster and I pushed it, but it was tangled in the material which caused it to discharge. The bullet went into my leg and then into the floor.”

“It was just a little accident. Dave is an excellent marksman [evidently],” Urban [Connersville Mayor] said Monday. “Apparently the Glocks don’t have the trigger safety that they should have.”

Okay, but here's the topper to this bizarre-o story--

The gunshot wound Saturday is not Councellor’s first. Fifteen years ago, Counceller said he accidentally shot himself in his hand.

Was he wearing fleece gloves at that time? It might be a revenge shooting.

So I guess there's multiple lessons to be found in this story. Don't "whip it out" in public. Keep your finger off the safety when holstering your gun. If you shoot yourself once, learn from it. Or just don't wear fleece while packing your Glock. This time the Glock struck one, next time perhaps the Glock will strike two.

Take your pick. But most of all, remember this -- you don't need to be packing when you're going into a gun store. They already have the weapons. You  just need cash and an ID -- and maybe not even that. You just need to show you're responsible enough and know how to handle a gun safely. Being a police chief evidently isn't enough.