Perceptions are premises to peoples realities

Two USCCA members prompted my post - Ms. Dawn, website Community Manger and author Ed Combs of July 2020 USCCA article Keep Your Head; The best fight is the one you avoid… My title simply put, is after reading many of the comments of members, comments that were specific and inferred, and the mentioned article, I would be hard pressed not to think that tolerance (you the reader pick your social category) is lacking with many members. I appreciate Ms. Dawns calming comments to some of the posts as her comments reflect that USCCA is inclusive. The article I referenced herein were akin to others in tone - “us against them,” and I am not speaking just gun owners vs non-gun owners. “Dog whistles” such as Republican vs Democrat, mobs, or Antifa (who are real), and inferring “all” who protest at social justice forums are violent and bent on destruction; although law enforcement data has revealed Antifa, right-wing extremist, etc. have infiltrated some protest around the country and prompted violence; not your average law-abiding, first amendment protestor. However, couldn’t understand why the author didn’t mention Pride Boys or Boogaloo Bois (armed in broad daylight in front of state, local law enforcement threatening to kill a state’s governor)? To me that speaks volumes of bias. Additionally, readers having concerns of martial law with the coming Presidential election (I thought this was the United States of America) and news stories mentioned that provided little context to the reality of the respective story. Although taken aback, not shocked (my perception upon becoming a USCCA member), I joined USCCA for the benefits that the insurance alone provides. That said, I will continue to read the many informative articles - training, CCW, new product, but also comments just to be aware of where peoples heads are at; however, will not be commenting. In closing, who am I - USCCA member, local shooting range member and avid shooter (S&W; Glock), supporter of 2nd amendment, retired U.S. Army Command Sergeant Major, combat veteran and Airborne Master Rated Parachutist, African American, Muslim, parent, college educator, Democrat… just to give some context. Yes, perceptions are premises to peoples realities.


Welcome to the family brother and carry on, you are in the right place at the right time.

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Welcome to the community. Not sure it’s worth responding since you’ve already stated that you won’t be commenting, but perhaps you’ll read and reconsider.

It’s an interesting perspective you provide and I appreciate it.

We all have biases, it’s human nature, sometimes used for good e.g. I have a bias against teenagers who drink and drive and want to be friends with my kids and take them out, and sometimes for bad e.g. racism.

You showed biases in your own post but again that’s fine we all have them.

Where I agree with you 100% is that often times we’re guilty of lumping folks together. E.g. Not all who protest are violent just like not all cops are racist, but both sides (politically) tend to lump people which is something we should avoid doing.

However we should not confuse being biased (in a negative way) with challenging ideas, data or having different opinions.

E.g. I would challenge you to provide evidence of right wing extremists being involved in any of the rioting vs ANTIFA or individuals looking for opportunities to loot/destroy. Yes there were a couple of intel briefings back in June warning of the possibility, but it was not substantiated with any evidence and was purely speculation (and I think at this point as for the most part has been disproven). That should not lead you to conclude I am biased (negatively), just that I have yet to see reliable data yet (to which you correctly refer to needing to do above).

Hope you join the dialogue here, as it’s not healthy to have everyone thinking the same way regardless of group (ideas need to be challenged if they are going to be proven, and improvement cannot come without challenging the status quo).

Christian, black Man, husband and father of two, Air Force Veteran, Scout Master, 2A supporter, RSO, USCCA member (for context :slight_smile: )


I think it is the peaceful protesters’ responsibility to distinguish themselves from the criminals. I am a law-abiding citizen, I want law and order. I am not ready to swap police brutality for rioters’ brutality.

As far as cops are concerned, I am pretty sure there are mechanisms on the level of PD, municipal, state, DOJ to weed out racist and unlawful behaviour. What mechanisms have BLM put in place to make sure, for instance, Armenian Genocide Victims Memorial will not be desecrated again?


I may have to disagree with you here a bit as we are all innocent until proven guilty, so why should the peaceful protesters have to distinguish themselves as such? (and many of them have by the way during various incidents that were heading south) I think the onus is on us (authorities, journalists) to identify bad actors (whomever they are) call them out and hold them accountable. Blanket statements like “mostly peaceful demonstrations” when clearly they were not are no more helpful than blanket statements categorizing all the protests as riots.

Yes and no…the mechanisms may be there, but it takes (or so it seems and in my opinion) a loooooong time to pull the lever on them. You may have a partner that is a racist, but are you really going to “rat him/her” out knowing that’s how you’ll be labeled (as a rat) by the rest of the dept who YOU depend on to have your back when you need backup? That’s a hard decision to make. I think there is a lot of opportunity in upgrading the training our police officers are given from PT standards, to unarmed combat, to verbal negotiation/deescalation. My understanding is that we give our officers just a few hours of training a year, when they should be spending (from experts that I’ve listened to) up towards 20% of their time PT/training/role-playing. So that will actually require us to over-fund the police vs defund them which is something I’m in favor of. We get the police force we pay for. Again, IMO.

I’m not a fan of BLM the organization (in fact I oppose most of what they support/stand for). But BLM the movement/sentiment I can understand and support. But to answer the question the organization has probably done nothing to make sure anything in place (but I don’t know that as I’m not affiliated with or keep up with them).


USCCA Instructor, Disabled Marine Corps Vet, Chef, Son of a preacher, Christian, Culinary Instructor, Photographer, and father with a grandchild. I have served, now I am a PFC, Private Fn Civilian but, I will always be a Marine. I want to make you a dish of food that shows you love. A dish that puts a smile on your face and nothing but, happy thoughts. If you are a democrat nothing changes. If you are a Muslim, the dish changes but the love is still there. I do not care who you are, I do not care if you do not like guns or if you do like guns

. I want you to be a free person and allow me to do the same. Infringing upon our freedom is not acceptable. Trying to take my life or the lives of my love ones is not acceptable. When it comes to the home intruder it is us against them.


Can someone please point me to the news article that mentioned this?


Duuuuuuude!!! @Todd30 that pic just flipped a switch and made me instantly famished!!! If you cook, I’ll bring the beer brother!!


@Todd30 Apologies if you typed anything… my eyes began to water along with my mouth looking at that delicious food. Wow… yum-o :yum:


If you were at a 2A rally (assembling peacefully for your cause), and a group of fellow 2A supporters shows up making violent statements brandishing firearms in a violent manner, breaking windows out of cars, beating people that oppose their ideals… would you want to be associated with their movement, or would you distance yourself from them?


Maybe I misunderstood @Alexander8’s point/position.

Of course I wouldn’t want to be associated with that, but I wouldn’t feel the need to call it out to anyone (other than the police if they were inquiring) and would probably just leave which many recent protesters did once the violence broke out. In fact it almost seemed like up until dusk, the protests were mostly peaceful and then once dark fell things started getting sideways.

But it’s not fair for me to lump in the daytime peaceful protesters with the night time rioters (I’m generalizing of course).

Side note…how interesting is it that with all the pro-2A rallies/protests that have occurred in the past, none of this non-sense has ever broken out (pointing to VA as a model)? Sort of supports the whole “law-abiding gun owner” narrative.


This is not about guilt or innocence. This is about the message of the protest being received, this is about the public opinion. Organizers of these marches have a lot of power over large crowds, if only they said, “we won’t tolerate looting, or blocking roads, or any other threats against whatever people we happen upon, whether they agree or disagree with us”. Instead their original message (which without a doubt has merit!), plays against a backdrop of mayhem. If one has courage to face off with supposedly brutal police, they have enough courage to tell Antifa/NFAC thugs to buzz off.


Great point @Alexander8, how do we know they didn’t do this?

I’m not sure as they know the police are constrained and will restrain themselves (no such guarantee with an ANTIFA agitator).

This seems analogous to me how we (law-abiding gun owners) have to come out and defend ourselves every time there is some kind of mass shooting or GII (gun idiot incident). It’s not fair for us to be lumped into that category with those individuals but it happens almost every time. Maybe that’s just the way of the world you’re gonna be judged/categorized defend yourself (which seems unfortunate to me).

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I don’t care for generalizations either. There are Democrats here that, while voicing their opinions on the second amendment, have discerned themselves from the far left (anti 2A IMO). Therefore I’m not going to say they are the same gun, freedom, hypocritical haters that we don’t want in Washington.
As for peaceful 2A protests, I think a majority of protesters that are currently protesting, much like us know that violence doesn’t solve an issue. If you want people to rally for your cause, a peaceful law abiding method attracts better attention than burning down cities. Violence may in this instance get some results, but we all know they are temporary, and not a remedy for the root cause of the protests.


Thank you for your service, @Randolph5.

I will agree with you to a point, @Randolph5. A lot of people here - most I would hope - are intolerant of innocent people (no matter their background) being hurt or attacked, our rights being whittled away, and all out hate.

Firearms, self-defense, and violence all bring passionate conversations - and sometimes that passion clouds how people express themselves. And we all know text does not make conversations with people you do not know personally any easier - there is no body language, tone of voice, or established relationship when you read someones written comments. Expressing a viewpoint that others may not agree with and having it countered does not mean someone is not tolerant, it means they have a different opinion.

Respectful conversations - even heated respectful conversations - help us all understand each other better. None of us have the same experiences and we all handle what life throws at us differently from another, but we all have a common ground of wanting to protect ourselves and our loved ones - and I will go so far as to say we all want to do what we can to protect other innocent people no matter their background.

We don’t have to all agree on everything - the world would be a mighty boring place if we did. But that disagreement doesn’t mean we’re not tolerant of other’s views. Being interested in and willing to discuss our differences is the very definition of tolerance.


You appear to be guilty of what you claim the rest of us are. We are an amalgam of different voices and opinions, evidenced by the discourse even in this thread. When people make claims about one party or group, they are called on it. I believe when comments are made about the Democrats being anti-rights, it is really meant to be directed at the Democratic Party leaders who have publicly stated their disdain for firearm owners and the RKBA and pass laws that infringe on our rights. Those comments are not directed at those here who are firearm owners, of any party or group, and do believe in our RKBA.

As to comments about Democrats in general, it is difficult, for me personally, to understand why one would vote for a candidate that is seeking to abolish, or at minimum limit one’s ability to exercise an inalienable right, but still believe in that right and own firearms. The Republicans unfortunately are no better, as Trump’s call to ban bump stocks shows that he, too, is willing to infringe on a right that “shall not be infringed”. All elected politicians should be upholding their oaths of office and defend the constitution, including all of our rights.

“Gun control” is racist in origin in the USA. States with the most restrictive firearm laws also have the lowest rates of minority and women firearm ownership. That shows that “gun control” is discriminatory. Our country was founded on the ideal of egalitarianism. We have fought hard to get to where we are today. That is not to say more cannot and should not be done, only that we should not be taking regressive steps against our rights.

As to your comment about Martial Law being discussed in a thread, the first time I read about it was from a Leftist commentator in a news column claiming that Trump was going to declare Martial Law after the 2016 election. Regardless of origin, the discussion itself here is not an indication of anything, but that people here think about many topics. We seek to learn and be prepared. Discussing a situation that might not happen, opens one’s mind to think about what if it did. We always ponder what ifs. That makes us better able to handle the unexpected. That is not a negative, but a positive.

I would love to know the source of that. I do know that a number of them were at an event with state senator Amanda Chase in Virginia along with members of the BLM. Both groups were openly carrying. Neither group threatened anyone. It was an affirmation of the RKBA. Until you actively do something illegal, you should be able to exercise your RKBA.

The former group is also claimed to be White Supremacist, but that is untrue, and obviously so, as they attended an event with BLM. Unlike Antifa, they do have members on both sides of the political spectrum, and are, like Antifa, not centrally controlled and are anarchist.

There were also members in attendance at Lobby Day in January in Virginia, as well as BLM. There were people of all races, genders and orientations, etc., at Lobby Day. Tens of thousands in attendance, the police were not in riot gear, and there were no fights, no rioting, nothing. The news media even reported that the streets were left cleaner than when they arrived. This is an example of what law-abiding firearm owners are, good, decent people that only want to be allowed to live our lives without government oppressing us.


I must have missed the press briefing, if they did. That’s a starting point BTW, leadership must go to various alphabet news outlets, and disavow violence and totalitarianism.


I’m tolerant of many things. I’m not tolerant of violence masquerading as a noble cause, harming law abiding citizens. I’m intolerant of criminals being slapped on the wrist, while law abiding citizens every action is put under a microscope, and get the book thrown at us for protecting ourselves. I’m intolerant of the actions of some political figures trying to ruin the country that our veterans fought to defend. I’m intolerant of veterans being treated like :poop:, because help costs money.


:point_up_2:t4: This. If Randolph’s statement goes unchallenged, it might be misconstrued as fact.

Legal gun owners have been maligned in mainstream media as violent people.
But, we haven’t done anything close to what Antifa is doing on a nightly basis.


That’s too bad. Your point of view is sorely needed.