Thursday, May 6, 2021

Catching my Breath

This post was written yesterday afternoon.

It's 1 pm and the house is blessedly quiet. This is me, breathing a sigh of relief. 

Let me explain what's transpired over the past few days. Buckle up, it'll be a long one. 

Around 2:30 am Monday morning, I was leaving the bathroom after finishing my getting ready for bed routine when I heard my father calling for help from his bedroom. This is not terribly unusual, as he is 85 and falls a lot due to Parkinson's. He also sleeps alone because back in the 1990s mom moved to a separate bedroom because he had several obnoxious sleep habits including untreated sleep apnea and snoring that sounded like trucks downshifting on the highway, so she moved out in order to get some rest. 

So we have an old man who falls a lot and who lacks the strength to get up by himself, sleeping alone in a bedroom on the other side of the house. Yes, it's stupid, but that's apparently what he wants, even though it often results in him spending hours alone on the floor. 

So by sheer luck I hear him calling for help. I open the door and he's on his knees in front of the nightstand, naked from the waist down, complaining that he fell around 11:30 that evening and can't get up. Having been to this rodeo before and being unable to deadlift a 5'10", 165 pound sack of potatoes into a standing position and then hold him upright until he can get his bearings -- and yes, sack of potatoes is correct, he either lacks the strength to help me or refuses to help, I'm not sure which -- I tell him I'm calling 911. 

I call and give the usual information: 85 year old man with Parkinson's, 165 pounds, has fallen and cannot get up, please send burly EMTs to pick him up and assess injuries. The 911 operator asks if anything else is wrong, so I ask him, and he launches into a litany of complaints including "My bones hurt" and "I can't feel my legs". Not wanting to play telephone, and wanting 911 to hear how he sounds (somewhat incoherent, lots of gargle-mumbling), I hand him the phone and make preparations for EMTs: I get dressed, get my mask ready, close the dog gate, turn on the outside lights and unlock the door. 

The EMTs walk in and one of them asks "Have we been here before?" The other one says "Yes, twice." (The first time was the time he fell and I couldn't pick him up, so I called 911; the second time was in the early morning when he was sitting at the table and told mom to call 911 because "I feel like I'm dying." [He wasn't dying. In fact, the doctors couldn't find anything wrong with him. Best guess is that he forgot to take one of his meds.]

So these EMTs know him and know the situation. They pick him up and get him dressed, and he says he wants to go to the ER. I tell the EMTs that's fine, but he has a doctor's appointment at 9 am and it involves fasting for bloodwork, so please don't let him eat anything or drink anything except water. The senior medic senses my utter exhaustion and exasperation and he has a quiet talk with me while his partner talks to my father. 

Senior EMT has gone through this before with his father, and has seen it a bunch of times, and lets me know that he's not judging me at all. He also lets me know that he's perfectly willing to take dad to the ER, but it's likely they'll just discharge him a few hours later and I'd have to come get him. In Senior EMT's opinion, if this were his first time at our house he'd take my father, but now that he knows the score he tells us it's probably better just to follow-up with the doctor in the morning because right now dad is clothed, back on the bed, and resting. I agree that's probably the best course of action. EMT gives me some telephone numbers, including that of a community support person to help with social issues and a non-emergency dispatch number for "invalid transport" -- in other words, call this number and the fire dept will come over to get dad out of bed and into the car for a trip to the hospital. 

OK. All well and good. They leave, I visually confirm dad is asleep on his bed (light on, natch) and close the bedroom door before locking up the house and going to sleep myself. It is now sometime after 3 am. 

We are now at the halfway point in this story. 

When I wake up 8 hours later, I see a note from mom. She tells me that when she woke up at 5 am, she saw the light on in his room but assumed he either slept that way all night or was awake but staying away from the kitchen to avoid eating. By 6:15, however, he still wasn't up and that was the agreed-upon "If I'm not up by then please wake me" time. She goes into his room and finds him on the floor of his bathroom, again naked from the waist down. According to him he went to use the toilet at 3 am -- so I guess immediately after the EMTs left? -- got into the bathroom, fell, and couldn't get up. He complained that he couldn't feel his legs and was afraid he was paralyzed, so mom calls the EMTs -- same guys, same shift, this is now visit #4 -- and they take him to the ER. 

[He wasn't paralyzed. He could still feel his legs when then pinched him. He's just weak and probably had one or both legs go numb due to how he was lying on the ground.]

I learn all this when mom comes home for lunch. I also learn that they were doing a bunch of tests on him to figure out what's gong on, because suddenly going from "one fall about once a week, usually able to get up from it" to "two falls in a four hour span, unable to recover from either" is a big step and they want to determine cause for this rapid decline. 

That was Monday. It's now Wednesday. They still haven't figured out what happened, but they're keeping in the hospital for a while longer. They -- the various physical therapists and social workers -- are also saying that when the hospital releases him he will be sent to the local retirement home for 2 weeks so that he can receive physical therapy in the hopes that he won't fall so often and, if he does, he can maybe get back up. 

This is me breathing a sigh of relief. The problem isn't solved, but mom and I get TWO WHOLE WEEKS of not dealing with the stress and pressure of dealing with a cranky, demanding old man with dementia. The house is calm, the stress levels are falling, and we are making progress in getting him into a VA home. While there is no guarantee that we can get him into the VA before the two weeks is up -- it's a Federal facility, after all, which means it runs at the speed of Government Bureaucracy and just having the paperwork finished doesn't mean he gets in, just that he goes to the head of the waiting list -- this is still a glorious 2 week staycation that mom and I desperately needed. 

Call me an awful person if you must; that just tells me that you've never dealt with an elderly parent with dementia.

Monday, May 3, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 151: CRY SOME MORE!

                            

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d talk about an editorial written by yet another gun prohibitionist in deep despair, and then discuss the leaked ATF Document which shows just how ridiculous the current administration's attack on 80% kits is becoming.
  • Also, the US Supreme Court will again hear a Second Amendment case!
  • Weer'd Brings us a fisk wherein the Brady Campaign encourages a minor to commit multiple felonies;
  • Xander celebrates his one-year anniversary on the show with some reflections on guns and the 2A Community;
  • and finally, David gives through instructions on how to inspect a used revolver for purchase.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes


Main Topic:

Weer’d Audio Fisk:

Independent Thoughts with Xander:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Monday, April 26, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 150: Get a First Aid Kit & Training

                           

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss the hiring of Lee Williams by the  Second Amendment Foundation as an Investigative Reporter,  as well as the desperation that is popping up in recent anti-gun articles;
  • Xander brings us his Independent Thoughts on how the media coversa mass shootings;
  • David talks about the contents of his medical kit;
  • and listener & guest contributor Tiny gives us a segment on why he carries a trauma kit and why you should too!




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes


Main Topic:

Independent Thoughts With Xander:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Chris Cheng Speaks Before Congress



Last month, Top Shot champion Chris Cheng had the opportunity to testify before the US Senate Judiciary Committee about the importance of gun rights for all Americans, and how gun prohibition laws are discriminatory.

 
“Are we going to let the criminal minority take away the rights of the majority, which are supposed to be guaranteed to us by our Constitution? I am against H.R. 8 and 1446 because they represent a threat to the public safety of Asian Americans and all Americans who have an imminent need to defend themselves.” 

Mr. Cheng is also a member of the Board of Directors for Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols. While he was not speaking in such a capacity, we are nevertheless extremely pleased by the message he brought and the truth he spoke to Congress, and we are proud to have him as a key member of our organization. When he said "I am a gay American and have been happily married to my husband of five and a half years. Today we see a rise in attacks against Asian Americans, but tomorrow I might be back here talking about the persistent, on-going violence against LGBTQ Americans [...] I will continue speaking out against hate and violence in all forms, and I encourage all Americans to participate in what should be a simple, universal condemnation of hatred and violence. We should not be afraid of saying that we will not tolerate it, that it is unacceptable, and that it must stop." he spoke for all of us. 

We are indebted to Mr. Cheng for all he has done for us and for the Second Amendment. 

Monday, April 19, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 149: Always Look on the Bright Side of Executive Actions

                          

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss David Hogg "pillow fight" loss and Joe Biden's proposed Executive Actions on gun control;
  • Weer'd brings us a lengthy fisk of prospective ATF Director David Chipman;
  • and David gives us his reflections on Passover and what it means for gun owners.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes


Show Notes:

Weer’d Audio Fisk:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Sunday, April 18, 2021

V5 Loresheet: Father Dmitri

 How do I explain this other than by saying "Here's another thing I made for V5. If you don't play it won't make any sense to you"? I'll give it a try, though.

In V5, Loresheets are a special kind of background that you can buy for your character that links them into the setting of the game. For example, if your Vampire was related to someone important, or possessed special knowledge, or was connected politically, that could be represented with a Loresheet. Think of it as "More powerful than a typical background, less powerful than a Discipline."

Look, it'll make sense in a moment. 

Last week my GM concluded the Vampire: the Masquerade game which we began in the fall of 2019. It concluded because, well, my character had basically "won at unlife"; he'd accomplished everything I'd wanted him to accomplish and I felt bad for making the GM throw 404 errors by coming up with completely unexpected actions and/or out-politicking him. 

(Look, I know it sounds like a brag, but I was literally playing V:tM when my GM was in diapers and, well, I am quite wickedly creative and creatively wicked. To his credit, he never asked me to go easy on him and in fact challenged me to do my worst. Which I did.)

So when Father Dmitri Ignatiev, my character, saved the city for the umpteenth time and was in a position of unassailable power and privilege, I figured it was time to retire him to NPC status and hand my sheet to the GM so that my character could be a quest-giver and pain in the ass to future players. 

And then I thought "I'd like to make a Loresheet for him, based on my actions within the game and with the abilities reflective of who he was." So I did, and my GM approved it. 

Some of this may not make sense. I'll try to explain more when I post Dmitri's character sheet.


There is also a PDF version on Drive here

Monday, April 12, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 148: Low Energy, Many Segments

                          

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d have had a rough week, so we  skip the main topic to go heavy on the segments.
  • Sean has a response to our commentary on the Rob Pincus and Dan Gross Ammoland article;
  • David talks about the new Tennessee constitutional carry bill and what they got right,
  • with Oddball following right behind with some commentary on what they got wrong;
  • finally, Xander talks web security, phishing scams, and how it relates to our gun rights.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes


Friday, April 9, 2021

OBS-PP's Statement on Biden's Executive Orders



While our members are free to believe what they wish, Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols finds gun control to be historically rooted in racism and even today it disproportionately affects those who need armed self-defense the most: members of minority populations, be they racial, gender, sexual, ethnic, or religious minorities.

Furthermore, attaching the words 'common sense' to gun bans does not make them any more palatable, and we consider them just as offensive and just as unconstitutional as bans on same-sex marriage. Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols supports gun rights and queer rights, not specific political narratives.

Signed,
Erin Palette
Founder and President, Operation Blazing Sword
National Coordinator, Pink Pistols

Note: If you wish to link to this statement, please use this link to our official website. Thank you. 

Monday, April 5, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 147: The Great Big Round Table of News

                         

In This Episode

This is an ACP Round Table.   Join Erin, Weer'd, David, and Oddball as we discuss:

  • Rob Pincus and Dan Gross' controversial Ammoland article;
  • Hunter Biden's revolver and problematic 4473;
  • the Spree Killing in Boulder, and the store's unfortunate policy on guns;
  • and the various Appeals Court cases challenging the Bumpstock Ban and the right to Open Carry.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Sunday, April 4, 2021

The Gaki (V:tM 3rd edition)

Last week, I rolled a Natural 20 in real life. 

Over the past 6 months or so I've been looking for things which I wrote online 15-20 years ago, and while I've managed to track down most of them through the Internet Archive and backups of old mailing lists, there was one thing I couldn't find, and thought I would never find, because I thought I never shared it with anyone outside of my private gaming group. I had tried everything I could think of to find it and had resigned myself to it being lost to the mists of time. 

Last week I was Up Too Damn Late and the thought occurred to me to Google a specific text string. I knew that it wouldn't work, of course -- everything else had failed, so would this succeed? -- but I could honestly say I'd tried everything I could think of to find it. 

The first two Google hits were my missing creation: a writeup of the Gaki (a Japanese vampire) as a clan for Vampire: the Masquerade, written between 2001 and 2003. (Yes, I know about Kindred of the East. I never cared for it, mainly because V:tM is deeply rooted in Biblical mythology and KotE isn't. I also didn't much like the version of the Gaki which first appeared in the original 1992 World of Darkness sourcebook, but I used that as a jumping-off point.)

Have you ever read something and realized just how young the author was? This gives me a strange combination sensation of nostalgia, deja vu, and "Oh, you sweet summer child," because I was in my late 20s when I wrote this, and it shows. It's not just a matter of "I would have done this differently," although that's definitely part of it; there's also the fact that this piece feels like it's trying so hard to do everything right by explaining everything, instead of leaving things vague so that GMs can incorporate it into their games. Plus, it has that old White Wolf conceit of "Supernaturals did everything important in the world, so if you reference real world events there needs to be a supernatural link explaining how or why." It even has the obligatory Kewl New Discipline that every new bloodline needed to draw the players. 

At any rate, here's what I wrote 20 years ago. I'm showing it to you now so that when I update the Gaki for V5, you can see the difference between my writing styles of the then and now. 


Monday, March 29, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 146: The Government Ruins Everything

                        

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss the ATF raid on AutoKeyCards.com,  and a poltifact "fact-check" on Background Checks that is woefully non-factual;
  • David tells us why we need to keep politics out of the classroom when teaching people about firearms;
  • and Matt from Geeks Gadgets and Guns talks about some deceptive marketing in the latest crop of micro 9mm pistols.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Sunday, March 28, 2021

V5: Nagaraja (my version)

Let's talk about predators.

Predators and prey always exist in unequal numbers; if there are too many predators, they end up eating all of the prey, and then the predators either starve or move elsewhere in search of food. Conversely, not enough predators means that the prey species ends up outstripping its natural resources and, again, either dies off or moves on in search of more food. As in all things, there is equilibrium.

Even vampires must obey this equilibrium or perish. While they have an advantage in that they do not need to kill in order to feed, which both reduces the drain on the prey population and allows for a greater concentration of predators in a smaller area, this is tempered by the disadvantage that vampires are not apex predators and that a suitably startled, informed, and brave percentage of the human population can and do take matters into their own hands to cull the numbers of vampires.

Furthermore, legend has it that in the days of the First City, when kindred ruled over the kine as gods, that there were havens within the High House of Caine for more than 200 vampires. Given the size of cities in the early days of human civilization, this is a great concentration of predators within a small space, and it is only by the strength and will of the First Vampire that the City did not fall to decadent bloodlust.

But think for a moment: 200 vampires, all ostensibly of the third generation as Caine forbid the creation of more; the third generation, from which come the mightiest vampire clans. Don't you find it likely that at least one of those kindred would have succumbed to the pressure of ecological equilibrium and developed a taste for other kindred?

After all, Diablerie had to come from somewhere.

The entire document may be found here.

Normally, this is where I'd place my justification for why I did what I did, but I don't know if anyone ever reads that part of my posts or not. I'll just leave this blank for now, and if anyone wants to know why I made these choices, I'll gladly answer. 

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 145: Bipartisan Outreach and 'Moar Hogg'

                       

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss the follies of anti-gun activist David Hogg's company "Good Pillow";
  • they also rejoice in a very good NPR segment on, of all things, the Pink Pistols;
  • then Oddball gives us his thoughts on a video by Tacticool Girlfriend and Gun Penguin;
  • next, Xander has Independent Thoughts on keeping Second Amendment activism non-partisan;
  • and finally, guest Sean Sorrentino provides us with us his opinion on the anti-gun bill HB8.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Friday, March 19, 2021

Pink Pistols on National Public Radio


This is a story about how we win. 

Last week I was contacted by someone from National Public Radio who wanted to know if I could put her in touch with a new gun owner (one who bought a firearm for the first time within the past year) who was also queer. 

I was happy to introduce her to Ermiya Fanaeian, who not only restarted the defunct Salt Lake City chapter of Pink Pistols, but was previously a gun-control activist who changed her stance due to the recent uptick in violence against transwomen. 

The result of that introduction is a 5-minute interview by Scott Simon, which aired on March 13. I encourage you all to listen to the interview below, or read the transcript on the NPR website.

 
You may not know it, but this is an amazing step forward for Pink Pistols and Operation Blazing Sword. For years we have struggled to make our voice be heard by those who need it most: queer people who have been told all their lives that guns are bad and all gun-owners are potential murderers, and therefore don't even know that we exist and that the Second Amendment is for them, too. 

All of that changed this week, because National Public Radio is listened to by many, many people on the left, and they heard an obviously left-of-center queer woman telling them that she owns an AR-15 for protection and that they should, too. Just this one interview is better than any advertising we could buy, and so many people will hear it and wonder if maybe they should buy a gun because Ms. Fanaeian has one. 

This is how we win: by normalizing firearm ownership and getting our message to those who need to hear it. I'm proud to have been a part of this, and if you're a Pink Pistol or a volunteer for Operation Blazing Sword, you should feel proud of this too. 


Monday, March 15, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 144: Point and Counter-Point

                      

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss an anti-gun lawsuit/fishing expedition by the State of New Jersey against Smith and Wesson;
  • Xander brings us his independent thoughts on training vs. gear;
  • Matt from Geeks, Gadgets and Guns presents his counter-point that maybe a pistol red dot sight might be a piece of gear that improves your shooting;
  • and David closes out the show with some loving history about the 1911 pistol.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Monday, March 8, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 143: The Most Tone-Deaf Article Ever Written

                     

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d first discuss a successful court case for the Second Amendment in Washington State, and then the most tone-deaf article ever written, which just happens to appear on the Giffords blog;
  • Xander brings us his Independent Thoughts on prepping and extreme weather;
  • David reviews the KP-15 Polymer AR-15 lower;
  • and then Weer'd fisks "Guns Down America" accusation that the NRA is insurrectionist.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Main Topic:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Weer’d Audio Fisk

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Stop. You're Hurting Me.

I hate that I have to say this, but apparently I do:

  • Every time you point at a transwoman and say "That's a man!", you do it to me. 
  • Every time you mock a transperson for not being attractive enough, you mock me. 
  • Every time you body-shame a transperson who is trying to find peace inside their own skin, you body-shame me. 

We can have all sorts of productive and necessary discussions on such subjects as How young is too young to start hormone replacement therapy? or How do we solve the dilemma of biological males dominating girls' sports?, and I welcome those discussions. 

But if your first impulse is to quote Austin Powers, STOP. You are hurting people. You are hurting me.


Now I realize some of you are wondering Why do you care what other people think? or They want to hurt you, why are you letting them know they're succeeding? and I need to tell you that I'm not doing this for me. I'm doing this because I have people who are (or at least claim to be) my friends who are nevertheless making cruel anti-trans comments on social media. My judgement is that if I say "You shouldn't do this, it's not right" then they aren't likely to listen to me, because no one likes to be lectured on morality. 

However, if I say "You say you are my friend. Every time you do this, you hurt me. Please stop hurting me" then, hopefully, they will see the consequences of their actions as it affects someone they know
and will stop doing it. 

And if they won't stop, then they've just proven they aren't really my friends anyway, and I can remove them from my life with the fist of an angry god. 

In conclusion, because most of the hardest-core anti-transgender people are Christian, I leave you with the words of Jesus Christ Himself:

Matthew 25:31-46: The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”



Monday, March 1, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 142: Let's Make The Second Amendment Non-Partisan Again

                    

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss even more (mostly good) 2A news!
    • Montana is now Constitutional Carry;
    • Fort Fairfield and Paris, Maine are now Second Amendment Sanctuaries;
    • Mayors of large cities are urging Joe Biden to ban guns though executive orders;
    • and Erin was interviewed by a German publication on gun control.
  • Weer'd sits down with Lara Smith to discuss how to best make gun control non-partisan again;
  • and Weer'd brings us an Audio Fisk of a news show that asks "Does Gun Control Work?"




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Main Topic:

Lara Smith interview:

Weer’d Audio Fisk:

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Pink Pistols in Deutsche Welle

Last week I was contacted by Carla Bleiker, who introduced herself as a journalist for Deutsche Welle ("German Wave"), Germany's international broadcaster. 

She then said "I am writing a story about the situation regarding gun rights and gun control under President Joe Biden. I'd like to interview someone at Pink Pistols about this. Questions include:

  • What expectations do you have for President Biden in terms of gun rights and LGBTQ rights? 
  • In how far do you think he'll attempt to tighten gun control laws? How successful do you think such an attempt would be? 
  • In how far are you concerned about Second Amendment freedoms under President Biden?
  • What do you think about the current gun rights situation in the US? Is there anything you would like to change?"

The article has a neutral stance, which is good press for us as far as I'm concerned. However, like with all interviews, more was left on the cutting room floor than was included in the article. 

For those curious, here is my reply:

What expectations do you have for President Biden in terms of gun rights and LGBTQ rights? 
There are two ways to interpret this question; however, given that your later questions only dealt with firearms, I feel it safe to assume you meant the intersection of gun rights and LGBTQ rights and not “What are your expectations for President Biden regarding LGBTQ rights as well as gun rights?”

I have stated multiple times that firearms rights are queer rights, and that gun control makes it more difficult for queer people to defend themselves. My argument is thus:

· I have the right to live.
· There are people who wish to end my life because I am queer.
· Guns allow me to defend my queer life.
∴ Therefore, guns preserve queer lives.

· Guns cannot preserve queer lives if queer people cannot carry them.
· Gun rights means that all law-abiding citizens can carry guns for self-defense.
· By carrying a gun, I can defend my queer life.
∴ Therefore, gun rights are pro-queer.

· The right to self-defense -- gun rights -- are human rights.
· Loving whomever I want -- my sexuality -- is a human right.
· Living as I wish -- my gender identity -- is a human right.
∴ Therefore, gun rights are queer rights and both are human rights.
In how far do you think he'll attempt to tighten gun control laws? How successful do you think such an attempt would be? In how far are you concerned about Second Amendment freedoms under President Biden?

I honestly don't know how far he'll go. On one hand, both Biden and Harris have been very open about liking all these proposed legislations, and those opinions are largely shared by the Democrats in Congress, nor did the Republicans put up much of a fight when Trump spoke in favor of gun control.

But another talking point is that we are in the middle of the biggest gun rush in the history of this country. In March 2020, gun purchases began spiking at a rate of one million or more additional purchases each month, and that trend has continued unabated through January this year. It is statistically impossible for all of these new gun owners to be all old white straight Republican men.  Even Michael Bloomberg, who is quite literally the face of American Gun Control, realized this when his anti-gun organ The Trace published an article titled You Just Panic-Bought a Gun. Here’s How to Handle It Safely.
Bloomberg's position has always been abstinence-only when it comes to firearm education, and like an abstinence-only parent who discovers that his child is having premarital sex, his choices became “Ignore the situation and hope it goes away” and “Accept reality and seek advice from a professional.” As ignoring the situation almost always leads to unfortunate consequences like unplanned teenage pregnancies or negligent discharges which result in injury or death, Bloomberg decided to take the mature course of action and seek the advice of experts. For nearly two decades, he has told us that no one needs a gun; now, despite his best efforts, his anti-gun magazine is acknowledging the awkward truth that people want guns to protect themselves and their families in a crisis where the police may be late to arrive.
Therefore, given that a substantial part -- perhaps even a majority -- of Biden's base is now buying guns, and the guns being sold are the exact guns that Biden and Harris have spoken out on banning or restricting, the question must be asked "Just how willing will Democrats be to embrace gun control when they know that not only will it go against a portion of their base, but it may very well end up taking guns away from people who recently purchased these firearms, likely at a significant markup due to increased demand and reduced supply because of Covid-19, to protect their family?"
Please recall that the primary job of every politician is to ensure their re-election. Also, please consider my theory that gun owners are likely to become gun voters: Once you have bought a firearm (which are not cheap), you become resistant to laws that threaten to take it away from you, especially those laws which use the word "confiscation" (and the government would have to confiscate them; given the number of firearms in our country, paying anywhere near market value for them would bankrupt the government before our citizens ran out of guns to be "bought back"). Furthermore, once you know how to operate a firearm and know what it can and cannot do, much of the hysteria and word-salad arguments of gun prohibitionists are revealed for the nonsense that they are.
So in conclusion, on the one hand I think it would be very dangerous for Democrats' re-election chances to seriously push gun control right now (honestly, the economy and Covid-19 are bigger and more important problems right now). On the other hand, please understand that I said "right now"; I firmly believe that if somebody threatens you, it's in your best interest to believe them, and given the track records of all involved it's only a matter of time before gun control becomes a leading concern. I just don't think it will happen until after the pandemic has passed, our economy has recovered, and civil unrest in major cities has died down. 

What do you think about the current gun rights situation in the US? Is there anything you would like to change?
I'm afraid that this will have to be the subject of another email, as my response would be at least as long (if not longer) than what I have already written, and we are dangerously close to your deadline. 
For those curious about the last line: I received the email fairly late at night, with a request for a response by 10:30 am the following day; I emailed her that morning at 9:54 am. 

Overall, I think that the article is a balanced (if 1,000 foot) look at American Second Amendment politics for a foreign audience. 

Monday, February 22, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 141: Some Good News for the Second Amendment

                   

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer'd have good news on the Second Amendment front!
    • We discuss Utah going Constitutional carry;
    • Second Amendment Sanctuaries and their legality;
    • Infighting within Bloomberg's shell group March for Our Lives;
    • And we cover a defensive shooting where a young boy protects his Grandmother from  a home invasion.
  • David brings us his take on the best woods for rifle stocks;
  • and the ACP House Dick talks a bit about the financial aspects of running a private investigation firm.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Monday, February 15, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 140: The Text of Those Bills

                  

In This Episode
  • Erin is stuck in interstate traffic, so Weer'd recruits two men to do the job of one woman;
  • Weer'd, Oddball, and David review the text of several anti-gun bills and discuss their ramifications;
  • and Weer'd sits down with Lara Smith of the Liberal Gun Club to discuss how best to lobby your elected representatives to side with the Second Amendment.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Main Topic:

Lara Smith:

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 139: Soon May the Tendieman Come

                 

In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer'd forgo a Main Topic for some amazing segments!
  • Xander talks about the merits of being excellent, and not judging new gun owners for the guns they have;
  • Speaking of cheap guns,  Oddball recently bought an Altor and he shares his thoughts on this minimalist pistol;
  • and finally, there's been a lot of talk about the short sale of Gamestop stocks. Oddball, Weer'd, and Matt were discussing it before an ACP Film Track, and the result was too good -- and too timely! -- for a Blooper Reel.




Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Thursday, February 4, 2021

V5 Ghouls: Fatal Addiction

 Back in December I reviewed the V5 Companion, and when I talked about the section on ghouls as player characters I said that while I could understand why the writers didn't go into more depth, I might do so later.

It is now later, so please enjoy these expanded rules on ghouls (Google Document). Perhaps at some point I will combine these with the V5 rules and the V20 fluff into a single document, but right now I'm not willing to put in that much effort for such limited return. 

Please note that this is optimized for my Unknown Armies-style Stress Gauges for V5 system. If you aren't using that system then you'll need to find some way to measure addiction. 

Julius Jones, the ghoul of the vampire Maximillian in
  A Vampire in Broolyn

I really like how this turned out, because it presents an interesting dilemma for the players: Just how powerful, and how addicted, do you  want the people who know where you sleep? Who might even guard you as you sleep? On the one hand, you can get some pretty powerful soldiers fairly quickly, but you also run the risk of them becoming screamingly addicted and drinking your blood while you're helpless. Yes, they're blood bound to you... but does that matter when they're in the grip of a hunger frenzy?

So, just how hungry do you want your eaters of the dead to be? 


The Fine Print


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial- No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Creative Commons License


Erin Palette is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.