I’ve known Les Freeman for over 35 years. My ex-wife and I didn’t see nearly as much of him after he moved to Oregon in, I think, the 1990’s. But there was occasional contact and then when Facebook became a thing we were “friends” there. I don’t spend much time on Facebook but occasionally I would check out his posts. In the last few years I saw a lot of really hateful stuff about Republicans and his support for Sanders, then Clinton in the last election. Sometimes there would be rants about gun ownership but I ignored it all. Les has had a lot of stress in his life recently with the loss of all his siblings, the loss of both parents, the loss of his only child, and then brain surgery which required him to relearn talking, reading, and walking. I saw no need to add more stress in his life by confronting him on his home turf.
Occasionally he would make a comment on Facebook about one of my blog posts about guns. They were always negative and I would gently correct his errors and that would usually be the end of it for a few weeks.
Until last night.
It started with this comment about my QOTD by Saurus post, “STOP THE SHOOTINGS. STOP REPUBLICANS”. Les responded with:
I didn’t really understand what he was saying and asked for clarification:
He didn’t respond to that and started a new Facebook comment thread on my QOTD by the NRA post:
Ahh yes, a thinly veiled threat of violence. Progressives are all about forcing people who disagree with them to do what they want. It’s part of their nature.
I responded with:
Yes, I know. The first point was somewhat overstated. This is particularly true from a practical standpoint. But I wanted to cut off the common claim that the Second Amendment never meant individuals could own guns until the rogue Heller decision and this was the most succinct way I know of to do that.
I was then unfriended and blocked. Then he proceeded to make a half dozen or more anti-gun posts on Facebook (I have more than one account).
I guess he didn’t want to have a discussion. He didn’t even want to know what I had to say. I know this because from looking at my log files I could see that he didn’t read a single one of the blog posts I linked to. He just wanted to assert his opinion and then threaten me if I didn’t conform to his beliefs.
In case the Facebooks comments are deleted (the next level of “Reasoned Discourse”) I’m preserving them here:
Les Freeman: The right to kill as many people as possible is far more important than the rights of the millions of Americans who have and will be murdered.
Joe Huffman: What are you talking about? No one has the right to murder another. But everyone has the right to defend themselves and other innocent life with the best tools available.
Les Freeman: The NRA and the rest of you may loose it all. The Second Amendment can be eliminated. If I were interested in having guns (which i do own) I would start working for sane gun laws. PS if any of you think that your small arms will protect you, you have not looked at our nation’s armory.
Joe Huffman: The Second Amendment protects a preexisting right. Even if the Second Amendment were “eliminated” the right would still exist. See U S v Cruikshank (more info here: http://blog.joehuffman.org/2006/12/13/an-individual-right/). This is settled, by SCOTUS, law. Currently 23 of the states are controlled by Republican legislatures. Only 13 are controlled by Democrats. The rest are mixed. Republicans control both houses of the Federal Government. A constitution convention is being seriously discussed by some people and some states have voted in favor of a constitutional convention. All these states are Republican dominated. Any “elimination” of the Second Amendment is far into the future. In the mean time gun owners are increasing their numbers and their supplies. Estimates range as high as 660 million guns in the hands of private citizens (details here: http://weaponsman.com/?p=33875). The most popular gun type? AR-15s. Private citizens consume 10 to 12 billion rounds per year just in practicing. During all of WWII the U.S. produced 41.5 billion rounds. We consume about as many rounds in practice each year as the U.S. did in fighting each year of WWII (more info here: http://blog.joehuffman.org/…/too-bad-they-dont…/).
I have looked at our nations armory. We know how that will turn out should some of the military and police decide to go to war against the gun owners of the U.S. It’s not even close (see here: http://blog.joehuffman.org/2013/02/07/boots-on-the-ground-2/). And most military and police support the right to keep and bear arms. We shoot with them at matches, we see them at gun shows and at our local gun club meetings, and we train them.
I’m all for “sane gun laws”. The existing laws and the restrictions being proposed by some are mind boggling stupid (see here: http://blog.joehuffman.org/2013/02/01/crazy-talk/). What do you suggest as “sane gun laws”? I propose a middle ground (see here: http://blog.joehuffman.org/2007/09/11/the-middle-ground/).