Counter Cultured Column: Gun Groups Don’t Degrade Women

I’ve penned a new column up at Counter Cultured in response to Mark Follman’s piece at Mother Jones suggesting the NRA degrades and objectifies women.

Here’s an excerpt:

The leftist blog Mother Jones recently lashed out at gun groups, specifically the National Rifle Association (NRA), by accusing it of objectifying women and treating them like sex objects.

MJ senior editor Mark Follman authored a hit piece titled “How the NRA Degrades and Objectifies Women” to purport the decades’ old lie that Second Amendment advocates, like conservatives, are sexist. (Such a big boy thought!) Follman finds fault in an article published in the latest issue of America’s 1st Freedom because it pointed out that Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America founder Shannon Watts, heroine of firearm disarmament, is dishonest in her quest to promote “gun safety.” He writes:

The premise of the lengthy article attacking Watts, authored by conservative legal scholar and gun rights lobbyist Dave Kopel, is that she is a fraud—an operative fronting a political group, rather than the homemaker turned grassroots activist she says she is. The art spread for the piece depicts Watts as a paper doll figure in high heels, with a 1950s-style kitchen apron and domestic accessories including a feather duster, iron, sponge, and spatula.

Additionally, he’s offended by the personification of guns because literacy devices that positively promote guns supposedly inspire violence:

The NRA also rolled out two videos this summer fantasizing about attractive young women as, literally, assault rifles. A video titled “Beauty Shots,” from NRA News commentator Colion Noir, “personifies one of his favorite firearms in female form.” His voiceover describes an alluring, adventurous woman as she poses in workout gear, swims in a pool, and gazes intently into the camera; at the climax of the video Noir declares, “She is: Daniel Defense M4-A1.” To some the video was simply a head-scratcher, but it also drew rebuke, not least for debuting just three days after a heavily armed college student committed mass murder in Santa Barbara, driven by his rage at attractive young women.

Much like their fellow leftists in similar outlets, Follman and his Mother Jones minions might want to tone down their whining as they’ve dedicated numerous articles and tweets to defaming pro-gun activists, especially female gun activists and enthusiasts.

 

Continue reading at Counter Cultured.

Gun Control is Not the Solution After Navy Yard Shooting

Today marks the one year anniversary of the tragic Washington Navy Yard shooting. This event left our metro area down and distressed. The unspeakable horror surrounding this event brought so much pain to those personally afflicted by it. Anyone who commits a senseless act like a killing rampage should be condemned and properly brought to justice.

How did this president commemorate this day? By calling for more expanded background checks, a revival of the “assault weapons” ban, and more restrictions on magazines. Same old, same old.

One, universal background checks NEVER work. In order to purchase a gun in your respective state, you have to undergo a background check. There are already laws in the books. Stop creating more government oversight on our Second Amendment rights. The Navy Yard shooter Aaron Alexis got government clearance, had a history of weird behavior, and could have been stopped. This administration did NOTHING to stop him. No redundant background check would have prevented him from committing his awful actions.

Two, “assault weapons” don’t exist. Banning guns like the AR-15 because you find them scary when all they have are certain unique features is unnecessary and foolish. Hell, even the New York Times recently published an article admitting that “assault weapons” are in themselves a myth. Semi-automatic firearms are NOT the same as fully-automatic firearms. Drop this imaginary crusade once and for all.

Third, restricting magazine capacity puts one in more danger than you think. If you’re met with a moment where your life is on the line and you don’t have enough bullets to defend yourself as a last resort-key word is last resort-you are making yourself more vulnerable to attack or worse–death. 10-round or 15-round magazines offer extra cushion for range time and, inevitably, for self-defense.

Gun control measures never reduce or eliminate the threat of violence. Instead, they bolster and enable tyranny. What’s the solution? Gun-free zones should be eliminated so tragedies like the Navy Yard Shooting never happen again.

Irony in Estonia

There is no greater irony than an American president with Marxist beliefs who already brokered a deal with Russia telling the nations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania that he has their backs.

Here are some gems from his speech in Estonia today: “People want more control of their lives, not less.”; “Our commitment to your security is rock solid!”; and “I should have called the Estonians when we were setting up our healthcare website.”

Really? If he says he loves freedom, why are his policies here rooted in control and more government involvement? Why did he okay START II with Russia if he has the Baltics’ backs? Why should he and his administration be trusted if their foreign policy strategy is out of whack? Why would Estonia want to touch something like Healthcare.gov when that country, like many other formerly occupied countries under the USSR, already suffered under the wrath of socialized healthcare? It’s quite pathetic.

Here’s why you should be skeptical about the Obama administration backing the Baltics: During a 2004 trip to Ukraine, he and former U.S. Senator Dick Lugar told Ukrainian officials that their country should be disarmed of military weapons–at minimum, weakened militarily (meaning they are more vulnerable to Russian attack). Additionally, Obama essentially gave Putin via Medvedev the okay to do whatever that country wants in the name of “flexibility” in that infamous hot mic scandal before the 2012 election.

I have a vested interest in Baltic affairs because I have many family members back in Lithuania and friends in several of the Baltic states. (My mom is in Lithuania as we speak.) Given how the Obama administration has handled things domestically and foreign policy-wise, he’s not to be trusted. The Baltics need to take matters into their own hands and have the moral support of fellow freedom-lovers at their disposal.

Celebrate An Unconventional Labor Day Today

I have a different interpretation of Labor Day, which I hope many of you share.

Instead of glorifying unions, why not honor those who truly labor for or have labored for us?

First and foremost, mothers were patient enough and brave enough to deliver us into this world and spend countless years raising us, especially with the help of fathers. (Be grateful for your mommas!)

Second, we should use this day to commemorate the lives lost to organized labor a la communism, especially those in Asia, Africa, Cuba, and former USSR. (This figure totals over 100 million.) Although my late maternal grandpa was lucky to survive 18 months in one of Stalin’s gulags, the effects of forced labor left him distraught, broken, and fearful of the world. (Equal sharing of misery shouldn’t be celebrated.)

Lastly, honor workers/laborers (small business owners, their staff,etc) who work diligently to ensure that millions don’t feel the negative effects of high regulations and those who work diligently in the name of competition–not force. (My dad has done more as a general contractor for nearly 30 years by bringing so much joy to his clients.) Whether you own or work for a business like a restaurant, start-up company, etc., don’t discount the labor of love encouraged by free enterprise, innovation, and ingenuity.

Happy Labor Day!

Angling Right: Deep-Sea Fishing in Virginia Beach

I apologize for not keeping up with my ‘Angling Right’ posts of late! As a young professional in politics, I lead quite a busy life. Nevertheless, I do my best to allow time to enjoy the finer things in life like fishing.

I spent this past weekend down in in the Hampton Roads area of my adopted home state Virginia–specifically Norfolk and Virginia Beach. While there, I had the opportunity to go deep-sea fishing with my dad and my sister. I haven’t been deep-sea fishing since summer 2011 (I was still living in California then), so I was excited to board a deep-sea fishing charter and let loose.

Deep-sea fishing is more challenging and difficult than freshwater fishing, but is equally fun to participate in.

For purposes of affordability and higher likelihood of catching fish, we opted for Rudee Inlet Charters. Since we came before Labor Day, we paid $40.00/person for a half-day trip aboard the Rudee Angler. Our rate included a saltwater fishing license, tackle, bait, weights, and rods.

Here are the schedule and corresponding rates:

SUMMER:  Memorial Day – Labor Day, 1/2 day trips, everyday 8:00am-12:00pm and 1:30pm-5:30pm.  Adults $40.00  Kids age 4 to 11 $29.00

July – Mid August, Night fishing every  Wednesday, Thursday & Saturday from 6:00pm – 9:30pm.   Adults $35.00  Kids age 4 to 11 $29.00

Every Thursday June thru August 17 hr. Offshore Trip  3AM- 8PM  $200.00 per person. This trip is limited to 35 anglers. Reservations Required!

SPRING AND FALL:  3/4 day trips from 8:00am – 2:00pm  Adults $70.00  Kids age 4 to 11 $60.00

Full day trips from 8:00am – 5:00pm  Adults $90.00  Kids age 4 to 11 $80.00  Reservations recommended on this trip!

WINTER:  Every Saturday, Deep drop 17 hour trips 3:00am – 8:00pm  $200.00 per person. Reservations are required for this trip as we limit the number of anglers to 35!

Rudee Inlet Charters is located on 200 Winston-Salem Avenue in Virginia Beach. Below is a shot of Rudee Inlet from the Rudee Angler:

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Rudee Inlet

 

Here is our final catch!

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Our final catch: two croakers and a bluefish.

My dad did quite well for himself. He caught two decent-sized croakers but had to throw back about 9 smaller croakers since they didn’t meet the 12″ requirement.

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Of the three of us, my dad ended up the victor with his 18″ croaker and 13″ croaker.

It was my sister’s first time deep-sea fishing, and she did quite well for herself.

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It was my sister’s first time deep-sea fishing, and she caught this beautiful 16″ bluefish thanks to the help of boat mate James!

During August, you can catch the following species: Cobia, Red and Black Drum, Bluefish, Croaker, Trout, Flounder Croaker, Spot, Trout, Taug, Spadfish, Spanish Mackeral.

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Bluefish

And yes, I did catch a croaker! (Alas, it was too small to keep.)

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Here was my catch. Sadly, I couldn’t keep this croaker because it was just shy of 12″.

Before you decide to go deep-sea fishing in Virginia Beach, note several things:

1) If you’re prone to motion sickness, bring some Dramamine with you. I had a bad experience deep-sea fishing in Mazatlan, Mexico, in 2007 that led me to associate deep-sea fishing with seasickness.  I was spared seasickness this trip, which made my experience FAR more enjoyable. Don’t miss out on good fishing if motion sickness can be avoided!

2) Wake up early and be punctual. Fishing charters generally board 30 minutes before take-off. Make sure you arrive early for morning or afternoon trips. Trips are on a first come, first serve basis.

3) Protect yourself and keep hydrated. Looks can be deceiving with respect to weather. Even if it’s cloudy, bring sunscreen and drink plenty of water. Your body will thank you!

4) Tip the shipmates. They bait your line and are hilarious to boot. Don’t be cheap!

5) Have fun! Deep-sea fishing is intense and produces less dividends than freshwater fishing, but it’s not entirely worthless. Even if you don’t catch any fish, enjoy sweeping views of the ocean and breathe in some fresh air.

 

With summer winding down, I’ll be taking a break from fishing and spending more time around firearms. (Details forthcoming!)

I’ll have two more ‘Angling Right’ posts this year: one in late November and another in mid-December. Stay tuned!

American Women Aren’t Oppressed Unless Big Government Policies Exploit Them

VP Joe Biden tweeted this in honor of “Women’s Equality Day” yesterday: “I will not rest until my granddaughters have every single right my son & my grandsons have.”

I take great issue with this statement. Historically, equality in the American sense has been understood to be equal opportunities for all to succeed and reach their greatest human potential. The leftist interpretation of equality means (and usually translates to) equality of outcomes–a perverted idea, when implemented, that leads to a morose society and (inevitably) millions of deaths. (Just ask my family and everyone else who witnessed this ‘equality’ in their native homelands mired by tyranny.)

Much to the chagrin of VP Joe Biden, the most oppressive thing an American woman can experience, if anything, is the wrath of big government controlling her from cradle-to-grave. Before you decry “American women are oppressed!” look elsewhere and thank your lucky stars that you live here in the country, despite everything that’s happening here today. We American women have it exceptionally good here in the States.

Men and women have equal opportunities-not equal outcomes-in this country. Achieving full equality to men means becoming more biologically like them. If this is what leftist ‘equality’ aims to achieve, I don’t want any part of it. Men and women are different, unique, and serve their respective purposes. Both genders should be afforded choices and opportunities without the government telling them to how to conduct their lives. If my fellow females think government-subsidized birth control pills are the standard bearer of rights, we’ve surely lost our way as a Republic.

Nail Polish That Detects Drugs Doesn’t Perpetuate “Rape Culture”

Radical feminists and their apologists are verifiably unhinged.

My former colleague Katherine Timpf, now at National Review Online, wrote this article noting the bizarre reaction to a new date-rape preventative measure from Undercover Colors:

A group of college students have invented a nail polish that changes color if it comes into contact with date-rape drugs. Many see it as a useful invention because it might help women protect themselves, but, of course, some say anything that might help women protect themselves is actually offensive to women because that promotes rape culture.

“Women are already expected to work hard to prevent themselves from becoming the victims of sexual assault,” an article in ThinkProgress argues. “Now, remembering to put on anti-rape nail polish and discretely slip a finger into each drink might be added to that ever-growing checklist — something that actually reinforces a pervasive rape culture in our society.”

Some opponents were outright angry at the invention.

“I don’t want to f[***]ing test my drink when I’m at the bar,” said Rebecca Nagle, one of the co-directors of an activist group called FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture. “That’s not the world I want to live in.”

The fact that fear of whether or not someone could be wearing the polish might deter potential rapists from drugging women’s drinks was not addressed.

If you think nail polish that detects whether or not a drink has been spiked with drugs perpetuates “rape culture,” you’re undermining any legitimate effort to combat and discourage sexual assault. (Kudos to its creators, several young men from NC State, for being innovative.) Nothing ever pleases these troglodytes longing for the 60s because they think all men are rapists and all women who don’t tow the radical feminist line are stupid. (Yay for progress!)

These are the very people who bemoan women learning how to shoot firearms and bemoan women rejecting government’s perverted notion of “empowerment.” Instead, anything that doesn’t please the female establishment is perceived as “rape culture” or “patriarchy.”

Is this the kind of discourse we should be embracing? Is this what female empowerment has become? Victimhood is an ugly look for us, so do yourselves a favor by dropping the complacency schtick and learn how to fight back.