Thank You and Grow Up

I sent the following letter to our local (Moscow, Idaho and Pullman, Washington) newspaper, The Daily News and to the University of Idaho newspaper, The Idaho Argonaut.  Some background:  Our Moscow, ID mayor, Nancy Chaney, decided that people should not be allowed to carry pistols in public spaces, worried, as she put it, that people might “swoop in and create confusion” in the event of serious trouble.  She later found our about Idaho‘s preemption law, making it illegal for local governments to limit people’s rights any further than state law.  She couldn’t accept that, and tried to get state legislators to rewrite state law.  Running into a brick wall, Mayor Chaney and her conspirators have decided to table the issue “indefinitely”.  So far so good.  They were held back, but they now need to pay a price for their indiscretions, even if it’s only in the form of a letter from a concerned citizen:

Dear Editors,

“Thank You” to all the brave individuals in Moscow and around the state who fought to protect a human right (the right to self defense in public spaces).  As for Mayor Chaney and the others; you have some growing to do.  You could not be more wrong about self defense, concealed carry, or about the good and responsible citizens of the State of Idaho.

I submit that any holder of public office should be glad for our rights, comfortable with them, unafraid, and should always strive to protect those rights, confident in the knowledge that it is the proper thing to do.  Further, that anyone who is at all suspicious or fearful of the rights of the individual should stay out of public office.

As for the argument that since the feds place restrictions on carrying in certain places, it should be OK for local governments:  It’s not OK for the feds either.  Creating a patchwork of varying 2nd Amendment infringements can do nothing other than ensnare innocent Americans and make the criminals laugh at us.  Who’s going to consult their “rights infringements map” before moving from point A to point B (step in this square and you’re perfectly OK, but step in this other square and presto, you’re a felon)?  You call that law enforcement or public safety?  I call it insane.  It would be laughable if it weren’t so pathological.

Try as you might to conceal it, Mayor Chaney, your distrust for the people of Idaho is obvious and on display.  If you can work past that distrust and begin advocating more, rather than less individual freedom, you may find that you have more friends and more goodwill from Idaho citizens than you can imagine.

I just read another Daily News article, commending 44 people for their brave deeds during a shooting in Moscow last May, for things like “exceptional bravery at immediate risk of serious bodily injury.”  That’s a good thing– people who try to save others at their own personal risk are an inspiration to all of us.  One tiny little gripe here:  The one regular citizen (non cop, non firefighter, non EMT, etc.) who also exhibited “exceptional bravery at immediate risk of serious bodily injury” received no mention whatsoever, in spite of his having been shot and seriously injured in the process.  Blundering oversight or personal disdain on the part of the reporter or editor?  Could be either.  It certainly shows no respect.



4 thoughts on “Thank You and Grow Up

  1. The “regular citizen” being “exceptionally brave” was doing nothing to help the situation. His reckless behavior put himself and other in danger when he interfered. He should not be commended for his actions.

  2. Idaho has a preemption law. That is one of the best laws I have ever heard of. It makes me want to move 200 miles east.

  3. Xenia: One could say that about others who were there. The fact that one’s actions had no positive result does not erase the possibility that bravery was involved. There’s a fine line between bravery and stupidity, after all.

    We could propose a simple continuum of individual decisions:
    1. Recognize a critical situation and do nothing.
    2. Recognize a critical situation and do something, yet fail.
    3. Recognize a critical situation and do something, and succeed.

    Decision 1 shows any of several characteristics (understanding of the situation and one’s inability to alter it maybe, prudence maybe, cowardice maybe, and others) but not bravery.

    Options 2 and 3 may show either bravery or reckless stupidity, or some combination of the two, but neither demonstrates cowardice, certainly. I submit that since the perp did himself in, it can be argued that no one had any more success against the perp that night then our regular citizen and so they (all responders) are equal in some way.

    Our regular citizen may have failed in stopping the perp, but he tried, and so doing he drew fire from the perp. Can anyone be absolutely sure that distracting the perp as he did resulted in zero positive outcome? What if he’d hit the perp? Same action, same effort, but with some success? Would we be saying his action was “reckless” then? Well, some people would say that, even he had saved a life or two, because you can’t count the lives saved—never for sure. He caused the perp to consume ammo– maybe that could have saved a life if the perp had at some time run out of ammo. Secret Servece personel are trained to “catch the bullet” jumping in frot of their VIP. Our Regular Citizen caught a few that night.

    I say he had the right spirit, but the wrong tactics. Maybe that could be said of some of the people who were commended in the article, too. The police who responded to the infamous LA bank robbery back in the 1990s, for example, had insufficient training and insufficient equipment. Were they then “reckless” or were they doing the best with what they had at the time? Still, insufficient and ill planned as their response was, it pinned down and distracted the perps long enough to keep them from getting away and committing another similar act.

    Recently we learned of an armed citizen shoot and stop a perp in Colorado, saving many lives in the process (though the lives saved can never be counted). She made the same response (decision 1 above) but was successful. She was commended. If she’d failed, her deed would have been equally brave. Her tactics were better and maybe her luck was also a little better, but I make little distinction between the bravery and the commendability of the two citizen responders (the maturity or preparedness, maybe, but not the bravery).

    These are tough issues, certainly. If someone were shooting at my family members, I’d be reckless as hell, even if all I had were some rocks to throw. A .45 pistol against a guy with shooting skills and an M1A would be even better, but if rocks were all I had, I’d use them. Maybe in so doing I could distract the shooter long enough to save one of my family.

    But none of us can really say for sure what we would do.

  4. Xenia – the “Contact” link on your website isn’t working. It currently points to the “Groups” photo page.

    As for the mayor in question…Cripes! Idaho has those people in elected office, too? Depressing…

Comments are closed.