Any movement eventually develops its own fifth column, and ours is no exception. These are people who work to undermine their group from within. Some of them are useful idiots to the opposition (in our case, that’s the anti-civil-rights/anti-self-defense crowd), these people are not too bright but still manage to publish and pontificate anyway. Other fifth column members are bottom-feeders: click trolls and agitators who want nothing so much as traffic to as to enrich themselves.
In the former category is the recent Los Angeles Times op-ed piece by a well known gun blogger, arguing — if you can believe this — that Glocks are too dangerous for police officers to carry. There’s been plenty of push back on the blogger from people who actually do know what they’re talking about, regarding this piece of useful (to the anti-gun people) idiocy. I’d just add that if Glocks are too dangerous for cops, who receive on average a good 80 hours of firearms training and then 8-16 hours more every year, then they are way too dangerous for the average gun owner who doesn’t receive any training. I suspect that this blogger has zero LE experience — he should stick to things he actually knows about. If you aren’t sure if you know enough about something to write about it…well, that answers your question. In no case should you write about something that you have no experience in.
In the latter category — bottom feeders — we have several gun blogs — some of them pretty popular — engaging in a Jerry Springer approach to build traffic. In particular, they have became vocal outlets calling attention to every real and perceived piece of police wrongdoing. They criticize police shootings without full knowledge of the facts and zero knowledge of appropriate LE tactics (none of these bloggers have any LE experience). They spotlight every time a police officer did something stupid with a gun. They are tying to stir up resentment among gun owners over the fact that cops sometimes, in some places, have gun rights that the average citizen doesn’t. They are also trying to stir up anti-police sentiment among the juvenile segment of gun owners who resent any authority at all…all in the name of web traffic.
Now, certainly cops sometimes do stupid and inappropriate things with guns – in any population of one million people, particularly if that population is charged with dealing with the underbelly of society, you’ll get stupid and unprofessional behavior on occasion. And yes, in many jurisdictions cops have extra gun rights that ordinary citizens don’t. The right response to this disparity in rights is to use the privileges that cops have as a wedge to obtain them for everyone. Camel’s nose under the tent, and all. Gun owners need to realize that police officers far-and-away, overwhelmingly support gun rights. Read the extensive PoliceOne.com poll results here. In fact, there is no other demographic in America so supportive of gun rights — for everyone — as cops.
We have to push back on the fifth column in our midst as hard as we push back on the people overtly trying to destroy us. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and everyone is entitled to print even knowing garbage — I support the first amendment as much as the second. But we don’t have to welcome these people to our events (vendors, take note), link to them, or pretend that they aren’t doing actual harm.
Finally: I’ll hit this point often and hard: if you carry a gun for self-defense, you have to know the law. Invest the money you’d spend on shaving a tenth of a second off your splits with Andrew Branca’s book or seminars — it’ll pay far greater dividends. Visit this link to learn more, and use the discount code “streetstandards” for a 10% discount.