Thoughts on Heidi Yewman

This started out to be a comment in response to ubu52 who said:

Since this is only part one of a four part series, how do any of you know she didn’t get training?

The response grew and the links increased to the point I decided it really should be a post on it’s own.


At the time of the writing of the post being discussed she had no training. Perhaps she attended a class this last weekend and just hasn’t made a post about it yet. We’ll see what she says in her next post.

She is playing a very risky game. She is in “danger” of having her beliefs shattered. It is my guess that she had a set of beliefs totally at odds with reality.

In effect she was challenged by Wayne LaPierre:

Wayne LaPierre, told the country, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” I wondered what would it be like to be that good guy with a gun? What would it be like to get that gun, live with that gun, be out and about with that gun. Finally, what happens when you don’t want that gun any more?

I decided to find out.

There are at least three ways to interpret this.

  1. She is doing this to further proselytize about the hazards of private gun ownership from a position of “greater expertise”.
  2. She is sincere in her claims and really wants to understand more about gun ownership and what it is like to carry a gun.
  3. She has doubts about her beliefs and is doing this to confirm, or possibly refute, them.

The first post, in what is planned as a four part series, clearly fits interpretation 1. That she is so certain she will not want the gun after a month is very telling of her predisposition.

But read the first page of this website. She was (and probably still is) firmly committed to a set of beliefs and has relevance to action (condition 1 from the website). She has taken actions that are difficult to undo. These include being on the board of directors for the Brady Campaign and writing a book advocating more restrictions on gun ownership (condition 2). Her beliefs are almost certainly sufficiently specific and refutable by real world evidence that given sufficient contact with the reality of gun owners and gun ownership condition 3 will be met.

There are at least two paths for the future of Yewman’s relationship with gun politics. We have some control over which path is taken. Conditions 4 and 5 from the website hold the key to which path she will take.

Condition 4 states that undeniable disconfirmatory evidence must occur and must be recognized by the individual holding the belief. Condition 5 states that if she has strong social support for her faulty beliefs, even in spite of and in fact because of, the disproving evidence then she will increase her anti-gun activities.

She admits she didn’t know what it feels like or means to own and carry a gun but she surely had some preconceived idea or she would not advocate against gun ownership. I believe those beliefs can only flourish in those that are ignorant, malicious, or mentally defective.

From reading her writings (this is not the first work of hers I have read) I’m nearly certain she is not mentally defective (on the other hand Joan Peterson clearly is). I also believe she has the best of intentions. She is not in the same category as those that advocated for gun control so people of color could not defend themselves from the KKK.

I believe ignorance is her only defect. But ignorant beliefs, absent mental defect, do not long survive contact with reality unless there is extensive social support for those beliefs.The more contact she has with the reality of gun owners and gun ownership the greater the chance she will have sympathy for our culture and the more likely she recognize the flaws in the gun control culture. The very fact that she is censuring sincere helpful comments must raise the intensity of her cognitive dissonance.

If we wish to divert her path to one which is not hostile to gun ownership then we should be doing two things. The first is we should give her undeniable disconfirmatory evidence that her beliefs are faulty. The second is we need to give her an alternate source of social support rather than her ignorant, malicious, and mentally defective fellow travelers. If we can do that then the chances are very high that she will discard the erroneous beliefs. If we don’t then she will be an even stronger advocate for restrictions on gun ownership.

Are we up for the task? Or will we blow it by attacking her every misstep and error thus confirming beliefs that gun owners are belligerent, rude, and angry people that cannot be trusted with sharp objects let alone guns?

11 thoughts on “Thoughts on Heidi Yewman

  1. I think it’s a hoax and she never bought a gun. The whole article sounds more like an anti-gunner’s fantasy of buying and not a factual description.

    • I agree with Alan; I think she is making it up to try and score anti-gunner points. She claims to be in Washington, but then says she paid the fee (not even the amount they charge in Washingon) and was given her CCW on the spot. I call bullshit.

    • I’m inclined to believe she is being careless with the facts without actually fabricating a whole lot.

      • It wouldn’t be the first. Remember Joe Rosenthal little “Straw Buy” of a revolver at a gunshow in New Hampshire.

        He then went on every news show that would have him telling people how easy it was to buy guns in New Hampshire.

        Then the ATF called. Turned out there was a gun, bought by a Rosenthal stooge….but the gun stayed legally in New Hampshire.

  2. Well said, Joe. It disappoints me whenever I see people that I agree with attacking others. It makes the rest of us look bad and harms our cause.

    Assume good intent, until proven otherwise, and others will do the same for you.

    • Some others perhaps. But certainly not all. Still, initial good behavior increases the odds of that happening.

    • Assume good intent, until proven otherwise, and others will do the same for you.

      She’s a Brady board member. She’s by definition coming from a position of bad intent on this issue. I don’t find it odd that people aren’t willing to suspend their disbelief about her intentions.

  3. My comment is in moderation, and is posted below:

    First, welcome to America, where your rights are YOURS. You don’t have to wait to buy a book and exercise your First Amendment rights. No waiting for your 2nd, either. Cool concept, human rights. That is what RIGHTS are all about. NOT having to beg beforehand, and then wait for a paid government grandee to allow you to do something. When you realize that rights come with responsibilities, because YOU are responsible for YOUR actions, I hope you will get the appropriate training. Just because the 1st Amendment says you CAN say what you want, it doesn’t mean you SHOULD say it. The 2nd Amendment says you CAN buy and carry arms without any specific training, it doesn’t mean you SHOULD. I wish you the best of luck in having an honestly educational learning experience, and hope you don’t live up to (or down to) the worst of the gun-related stereotypes.

  4. I put up five comments. Not one made it through. And none were objectionable. They just pointed out where she was being willfully dangerous. Can’t have a gun owner pointing that out.

    Pajamas Media tried to determine which permit she has by matching her descriptions to a state process and cannot find one.

  5. My prediction: she is another Joan Peterson in the making, and is trying to hurry her metamorphosis into irrational beliefs about guns.

    What does being a Brady Board Member pay?

  6. ” I believe those beliefs can only flourish in those that are ignorant, malicious, or mentally defective.”

    Or programmed. You’re forgetting the most important factor; social programming. It’s very simple and obvious to all of us, and yet we seem not to take it into serious consideration much of the time.

    If you’re born in Saudi for example, or parts of Pakistan, chances are you’ll grow up to become a Muslim. If you’re born and raised in much of the U.S. chances are you’ll be of some Christian persuasion, or if you’re from other parts of the U.S. you’ll end up a Jew and so on, at least culturally if not in fervent practice. And if you’re born in Borneo, you stand a good chance of being a cannibal.

    You could say that by applying reason, one could overcome their cultural and social programming, but unless your programming includes heavy doses of learning to apply reason, it won’t happen. It can’t happen. In fact; reason, it has been said, is no more than a tool of oppression used by white males, thereby demonstrating that one’s programming can and does overcome reason, even when the programmed person is capable of recognizing reason well enough to actively reject it from his thought process.

    We spend much of our time trying to use reason to change people’s minds, but if they are programmed specifically to reject reason, we’re doing nothing but identifying ourselves as enemies.

    To truly change hearts and minds then, I see only three strategies. One; get hold of the children (done deal – the Enemy own the education system) before they can be programmed. Two; find a way to deprogram people. Three; failing to DE-program someone, find a way to RE-program them into a robot that can be more easily lived with in a free society, as opposed to a robot that’s programmed to help destroy a free society. None of those strategies involve arguing what we would call “issues”. They hit on a much more basic part of human perception and existence – the Operating System if you will, as opposed to the applications, or even deeper; to the basic system architecture as opposed to the Operating System.

    OK, so the fourth strategy is to fight a war with the robots, either because we sit and wait for it, or because we take a more pro-active approach to it. That’s four choices, and most of our time is spent, in effect, on the last and the worst.

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