Sunday, August 23, 2015

Tellico Sportsman’s Association on Tuesday August 18th

I had the honor of speaking to the Tellico Sportsman's Association on August 18th. These are my notes for that meeting:

Ladies and gentlemen,
Please repeat with me from the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

I have a few things that I want to talk about. They all revolve around that unalienable right to life. You see, if the right to defend life does not exist, the right itself has little meaning.

But, I am looking for audience participation, and welcome questions at any time.

Thank you, Wes Hibbert, for inviting me to speak tonight. Thank you all for having me.

My name is Liston Matthews. I started being a gun guy when I could count my birthdays on my fingers. I grew up thinking that the Second Amendment applied to us all in the United States. It wasn’t until recent years that I learned what the term incorporation means. I learned that the Second Amendment didn’t really apply until after the Heller Decision of 2008 and the McDonald Decision of 2010.

You can find my writings at my Blogs: and Good Hill Press. I formerly wrote at Knoxville Gun Rights Examiner. If you would like a copy of my notes with links to source documents, just send me an email and ask.

Tonight, I would like to touch on - - --
Gun law history since 1994
Personal Protection

We are in a new different era in the United States. A confluence of events have come together that remind me of the opening lines of A Tale of Two Cities:
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,
it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness,
it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity (unbelief),
it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness,
it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair,
we had everything before us, we had nothing before us,
we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way. . . .

Modern History
Now, here are some things to think about from recent history -
The so called Assault Weapons Ban of 1994 limited several features on firearms, (e.g. detachable magazines and two or more of the following: collapsible buttstock, bayonet lug, pistol grip, flash hider, grenade launcher) but also limited magazine capacity on newly manufactured magazines to ten rounds.
About the same time, many states started passing shall-issue handgun carry permit laws.
Many states required that the handgun must be concealed. But not Tennessee.
The combination of these events, the AW ban, and CCW passage fueled a market for small, concealable handguns, like never seen  before.

Fast forward to 2008
On November 11, 2008, a friend from west Tennessee emailed me, and asked me for some advice on AR-15 rifle kits. At the end of my reply, I wrote, BUY AMMO NOW. There must have  been a bunch of people reading my email.

Within a few days, you couldn’t find ammo anywhere.
          LESSON LEARNED. Buy while supplies are plentiful

Fast forward to 2009
The Tennessee legislature removed the ban on handgun carry in parks, but gave local governments the opportunity to opt out.

Fast forward to 2010
February 22, the 94 year firearms ban in National Parks was rescinded.

Fast forward to 2012
Following the December 12, 2012 school massacre at Newtown, CT, both CT & NY passed new registration laws; yet in a massive act of civil disobedience, modern sporting rifle owners have refused to obey the law and register those firearms.
At the same time, Americans from all demographic groups have been buying guns like there is no tomorrow.

So, on the one hand, we have certain controlling elements of our society trying at every turn to limit, and in some cases, ban firearms possession or CONFISCATE, as has happened in Buffalo, NY following a pistol owner’s death - - while on the other hand, citizens are buying firearms and ammunition like there is no tomorrow. There were 946,528 NICS checks in July, up 16% from July last year.

Fast forward to 2014
Tennessee rescinded the switchblade ban and no longer limits knife length.

Fast forward to 2015
Tennessee made parks carry legal in all state and municipal parks
I was involved in getting Alabama to remove the gunbuster signs at Welcome Centers and Rest Areas.

Personal Protection
I mentioned earlier that we are in a new era
From the standpoint of personal protection, we face some dangers we have not faced in the past---
     Feral humans, including graduates of our sport fishing criminal justice system
     Sexual predators (btw, there are Three Registered sex offenders in my zip code. There are twenty nine RSO’s in zip code 37774, which this facility is located in.)
     Mentally deranged people who gravitate to GFZ’s

What to do about these?
Be armed  - - -  all the time.
Carry a bandana and a ballpoint pen
Carry a cell phone
Think about this: police average response time is 10 minutes or so, meaning,
Learn and practice Cooper’s color codes of awareness
You’re on your own!

Winning the fight
Tom Givens of Memphis has trained many people over the years in defensive handgun use. He has had 65 graduates involved in gunfights. 62 won their fight. The other three lost. They left their gun at home that day.

What if you lose a gun fight
A fight, whether it be a gun fight, knife fight or fist fight, is a chaos situation with no guaranteed winner. Today is the day to seriously consider what happens toyour mortal soul if you lose.

Since November 2008,
Permits from 4.6 million in 2007 to over 12.8 million this year

Permits iincreasing at an ever- increasing rate. Over the past year, 1.7 million additional new permits have been issued – a 15.4% increase in just one single year.

5.2% of the total adult population has a permit.
Five states now have more than 10% of their adult population with concealed handgun permits.
In ten states, a permit is no longer required to carry in all or virtually all of the state. This is a major reason why legal carrying handguns is growing so much faster than the number of permits.
Since 2007, permits for women has increased by 270% and for men by 156%.
Some evidence suggests that permit holding by minorities is increasing more than twice as fast as for whites.
Between 2007 and 2014, murder rates have fallen from 5.6 to 4.2 (preliminary estimates) per 100,000. This represents a 25% drop in the murder rate at the same time that the percentage of the adult population with permits soared by 156%. Overall violent crime also fell by 25 percent over that period of time.
States with the largest increase in permits have seen the largest relative drops in murder rates.
Concealed handgun permit holders are extremely law-abiding. In Florida and Texas, permit holders are convicted of misdemeanors or felonies at one-sixth the rate that police officers are convicted.

Changing concealed carry map
States with shall issue laws have increased dramatically since 1986.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Slow Poke Rodriguez

From Bearing Arms. Slow but not Stupid

José's victim selection process needs tweaking.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

What do you do about gun free zones?

 Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White, of the United States Navy, decided to ignore a gun free zone. He is one of two who returned fire when the jihadist opened fire at the Navy and Marine training facility in Chattanooga. It remains to be seen whether or not he will face disciplinary action from the Government. No matter how that turns out, his wife is not a widow, and his children are not fatherless.

 Jeff Knox wrote a thought-provoking piece on the subject over at World Net Daily. Go take a look, then come back and see what the state of Tennessee says.

I must admit, I misunderstood Tennessee law, in regards to posted property. I was under the incorrect assumption that it is a felony to carry a firearm in a posted area. That is correct in regards to government facilities, and schools, whether public or private. Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to do an interview with The Polite Society Podcast. Here is what the law says about other posted areas in Tennessee, as stated in the Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA):
(c)  (1) It is an offense to possess a weapon in a building or on property that is properly posted in accordance with this section.

   (2) Possession of a weapon on posted property in violation of this section is a Class B misdemeanor punishable by fine only of five hundred dollars ($500). from 39-17-1359, found HERE.

Sooo --

What is a person to do abut gun free zones?
First, realize they are not gun free - bad guys won't obey the signs any more than God's law
Do you stay, away, Joe?
Do you ignore them and go armed anyway?
If you go, do you consider it an honorable act of civil disobedience?

The problems with misdemeanors is the fact that they can come back and bite you big time in the future, so be cautious about saying, "Oh, its only a misdemeanor with a $500.00 fine. I'll just pay my money and be on my way*

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*Here is a a reprint of an article I published in 2009 over at Examiner, which illustrates the folly of pleading guilty to anything:

Natural Law tells us we all have the right to defend ourselves from harmful aggression. As technology has developed, the firearm has become the tool of choice of both the criminal and citizen. Without the right to a gun, the citizen is at a great disadvantage in an encounter with the criminal. The Lautenberg Amendment has stripped  many citizens of this basic human right.
Last week, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling on Lautenberg (PDF file HERE), which could have a far-reaching positive effect on gun rights. Ironically, this is the same court that earlier ruled against gun rights in McDonald v Chicago, which is now on the way to a Supreme Court decision next spring.
In this more recent case, Steven M. Skoien had been convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence. Some time later, he was found to be in possession of a Winchester 12 gauge shotgun. As a result he was prosecuted under Lautenberg.

There are two problems with the Lautenberg Amendment.

One, this law , passed during the presidency of William (what does the word is mean) Clinton, is another statist  attempt to increase the classes of persons prohibited from possessing firearms.
Two, this law is an ex post facto law. From The Constitutional Dictionary:
Every law that changes the punishment, and inflicts a greater punishment, than the law annexed to the crime, when committed.
While I am strongly opposed to domestic violence, there are many cases of people who, long before passage of Lautenberg, plead guilty to a misdemeanor domestic violence charge, maybe paid a small fine, and have been exemplary citizens for decades. But, when Lautenberg was passed, these people suffered a greater punishment in that they were stripped of their gun rights. Further, if they were in a profession that required carrying of  a firearm, their career took an abrupt turn since they could not possess a firearm.
We can all take a lesson from this. Be very cautious about pleading guilty to anything. Although the current punishment may be minor, if Congress, or your state legislature passes an ex post facto law such as Lautenberg, you could suffer future punishment you never imagined possible.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

We need more German-style gun laws!

Here's my recent letter to the editor that they did not print:

Editor, News-Sentinel:

The August 4 writer suggests we need stronger German style gun laws to make America safer. The question is, safer for whom? German gun laws have a tainted history that suggests they are not a nation to emulate. Alfred Flatow would disagree with the writer as he shuffled to the train!

Flatow was a German who won first place in gymnastics at the 1896 Olympics. Having served honorably in the German Army in World War I, in 1932 he dutifully registered three handguns under a post-war German law. Government officials warned that registration records must be carefully stored so that they did not fall into the wrong hands.

But the Nazis, under Adolf Hitler, seized power in 1933. In 1938, the Nazis used those records to disarm enemies of the state, including Flatow, who had committed no crime. His arrest record October 4, 1938, stated, “Arms in the hands of Jews are a danger to public safety.”

Can you hear the plaintive whistle of the locomotives pulling boxcars loaded with God’s Chosen People off to the death camps? Can you hear the German congregations singing loudly so as to not hear those trains? Can you feel the terror of the German Jews on November 10, 1938, the Night of the Broken Glass*?

The first battle of our Revolutionary War was fought April 19, 1775, over an attempted Redcoat confiscation of American arms. Today, Americans are stockpiling firearms at a rate never seen before. New Yorkers have defied their state’s “assault weapon” registration law.

Nation after nation that has registered firearms has eventually moved on to confiscation. Gun sales growth and New Yorkers’ civil disobedience are a strong clue that Americans are not willing to chance German style gun laws. Safer for whom? Not for us.


Liston Matthews


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Delaware River felony trap

I have written over at Examiner about the trials of Brian Aitken and Shaneen Allen. They felt the full impact of New Jersey's despotic unconstitutional gun laws.

Friend, do not take you guns to Jersey. Only go there if absolutely necessary.

If you are on a jetliner that gets diverted into Newark, and you have a handgun in your luggage, your really need to do this:

If you come into possession of you luggage, do not, under any circumstances, try to check it and continue your flight.

Rent a car and drive to Philly. Resume your air travel there.

This may cause you to miss an important meeting,

but its better than spending 40 days in the New Jersey's Gray-bar Hotel.

Thanks to Evan Nappen for posting this video on Facebook.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Tennessee House 14th District Candidates debate Constitutional Carry

This Thursday, while the nation was anticipating the national presidential debate, another debate occurred in Farragut, Tennessee. Jason Zachary and Karen Carson debated a number of issues, but this column focuses on only one, the right to keep and bear arms.

Alexander Waters, the moderator, asked the candidates if they would support a bill to enact Constitutional Carry in Tennessee. He posed the question clearly and succinctly.

Watch the video, listen to their answers, and make you choice. As you listen, keep in mind that I sent them a short questionnaire on July 21, which they both answered, with links below.

The question, along with Jason's answer can be found HERE.

Karen's answer is found HERE.

Here are some questions I would like to have heard discussed:

  • Are Tennesseans less trustworthy than residents of Maine, Vermont, Wyoming, Arizona, Arkansas, Alaska, or Kansas, who all have Constitutional Carry?
  • Did Governor Haslam really mean it when he said he would sign the bill if it came to him?
  • Why do seniors on fixed incomes have to pay a poll tax to exercise a constitutional right?
  • If the Second Amendment guarantees a right, why does Tennessee make it a privilege for only those who can afford the cost?
  • Does anyone care that this permitting process is and outgrowth of antebellum slave codes, and still has its greatest effect on minorities?

What do you think?
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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Gun Rights Policy Conference 2015

The Gun Rights Policy Conference will be held in Phoenix the last weekend in September. Admission is free. Register HERE. Rooms are $109/night plus tax. Reserve rooms HERE. Come rub elbows with the movers and shakers in the firearms civil rights community.

Parks issue sparks TN AG opinion, and interview

I had the opportunity for an interview with Aaron Wright of WBIR last week. The Attorney General had issued an opinion on guns in parks.

As I said there, "The basic fundamental right that any of us has is self-preservation,"

Here's the interview:

Monday, August 3, 2015

Should 2015 see the end of gun ban zones?

They probably thought it would work. I don’t understand why they did, but just accept that they did. But, failing to look at the history of laws and failure to obey them was their downfall.

One of the first laws that was broken was the admonition against murder. Since antiquity, man has murdered man, and when caught, many have paid the consequence for that crime. Until recently, on the calendar of mankind, that consequence has been capital punishment*.

Having failed at deterring criminals from committing murder, we now regularly release them from prison and expect them to obey rules like not touching a gun**; or not taking a gun into a gun free zone.

Beginning roughly in the 1960’s, America saw a cultural sea change. Perpetrators of evil began to be seen, not as as evil, but as someone who was disadvantaged as a child, beat by their father, neglected by their mother, or whatever. The penal system started morphing from a system of punishment, to a gigantic rehab clinic. In many (most?) cases, the penitentiaries became graduate schools for criminals. The criminal justice system has become much like sport fishing: catch and release, catch and release....

Then, sad to say, there are those among us who are mentally ill, and once would have been a resident of a mental hospital, but these days they are mainstreamed into society with sometimes disastrous results.

Add to that the fact that we are now, like it or not, engaged in a world war with radical Islam. Muslim jihadis live among us. We don’t know who or where they are, but they from time to time come forth and exact mayhem. Two examples of this are the first Fort Hood massacre, and the recent murders of four Marines and a Sailor in Chattanooga.

When you put these factors together, and then look at the locations of mass public shootings, a good detective might be able to piece together some evidence that leads to a logical conclusion:
  1. Gun Free zone signs tend to NOT stop people whose purpose it to murder as many as they can before they die.
  2. Mass shooters often scout prey much in the way deer hunters do. Some make extensive notes as to what venues have Gun Free signs posted.
  3. Police are usually at least ten minutes away.
  4. Only two of the mass shootings since 1950 were not in an area designated as gun free.
  5. The folks that create gun ban zones send out their edicts from behind the protection of metal detectors and police officers. When they go out, it is often with a police escort.

And the bread crumbs lead to. . . . There is more than a strong correlation between gun ban zones and mass public shootings. These zones have been rightly labeled as criminal empowerment zones, killing fields, and target rich environments. 

So, one should avoid these zones whenever possible. 

Incessantly lobby your legislators!

Be polite, but very vocal with restaurants and other businesses that post! When alternatives exist, patronize them.

Carry everywhere its not prohibited.

Yes, 2015 is the year to eliminate gun ban zones.

Now get busy!
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*If anyone takes a human life, that person’s life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings in his own image.(Genesis 9:6 New Living Translation)
**Federal law generally prohibits a convicted felon from even touching a firearm, much less carrying one.