Before I open this can of worms, let me state for the record, my views, my affiliations, if you will. Actually, I need to go back further, back to the beginning of my political evolution. Raised in CA, a product of the publik skools, I was thoroughly indoctrinated in liberal thought. I believed nobody needed a gun, a real man didn't need one, blah, blah, blah. In my mind, the only people who needed guns were the military. I thought they were cowardly and likely to induce bloodshed. At the same time, I had a rather juvenile preoccupation with knives, particularly the ones found in the BudK catalog.
In my twenties, I began taking POST Reserve training courses, and found that guns were fun to shoot. Around the same time, the Y2K scare was winding up to it's anticlimactic fizzle, and I decided I might need something other than a $20 katana to deal with the rioting hordes. I bought my first firearm, a Taurus revolver in .44 Special. I was bitten by the bug, but it was not yet serious.
After several years of trying to get hired on by a police department(I'd had a dream since childhood of being a police officer, keeping the peace with my pocketknife and my stern words), I elected to front the money, and put myself through the full CA POST academy. I reasoned this would put me on better footing to compete with applicants who had actual college degrees. During training, I was well and completely seduced by the shooting bug. As I began going to ranges, and tryng to engage in my hobby, I began to resent the lengths to which I had to go, due to the onerous laws in my state and county. One thing led to another, and I eventually became a full fledged libertarian, though I got out of the movement before being awarded my Wookie suit.
I swung over to the Conservative side a bit, and back toward the Libertarians with a small l, and finally settled where I am now. Jeffersonian Minarchist, free market supporter with Objectivist leanings despite my Faith. On the topic of guns, I am somewhat to the right of Ted Nugent. I believe the Drug War has cost us too many lives, too much money, and too much freedom. I have long been a pragmatist, seeking comfort in each small gain, and rejoicing at the slow creep of concealed carry across the US, despite the fact that I saw permits as an infringement.
Over the last couple of years, I have seen the government creep increasing speed, and after January, the mad rush toward socialism in America has chilled my blood to ice and caused a realignment in my thinking. I have obeyed the only gun laws I intend to. I am at my line, and I will hold it. No more, and no farther. I have no wish to see revolution in my country, nor do I wish to see bloodshed over our natural rights, but I will do what I feel I must. I try to take small steps wherever I can, to push back the curtain descending upon our country, to fight the creep of socialism.
Now that I have stated where I come from, let me state my intention. I believe the prags and the three percenters are both essential to our freedoms. I see the pragmatists as a negotiation team, sent in under a flag of truce to negotiate with the enemy. I see the threepers as the military sitting back in camp, waiting to begin, should negotiations fail. WE NEED BOTH CAMPS! Without the pragmatists, it becomes all too easy for the media/government to paint all gun owners as crazy gun nuts in need of control. Without the Three Percenters, there is no reason for the enemy to not dismiss us out of hand, and roll over the citizenry unopposed. They can make whatever laws they wish, because they believe no one will stand up to them.
I want to see some sort of accommodation between the groups, I want to see peace between us, to work for a common cause, that of rolling back the infringement of our freedom. I think most of us would agree that the majority of gun laws in this country are useless and anti freedom. It's the way we get them repealed that causes disagreement, in my mind. I've seen a lot of name calling, a lot of rudeness from both camps.
I intend to invite people here from each camp, for an honest debate, in the hope of reconciling two factions who should be working together. I will attempt to avoid moderation of the comments to this post. The things I will delete are obvious trolling posts which consist mainly of name calling, and blatant calls to revolution or assassination of government officials. I don't need that sort of trouble here. Beyond that, I ask only that people debate politely and in good faith. I don't forsee any trouble from those I am inviting, but perhaps spectators from both camps will not be so polite.
I intend at this time to invite Mike Vanderboegh, David Codrea, Sebastian from Snowflakes in Hell and Caleb from Gun Nuts Media, as a start. If any of them choose not to debate, I will attempt to find a suitable replacement for whichever group. I may be asking for trouble, but I feel that, to paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, we must all come together, or we shall assuredly all hang separately.