Monday, January 30, 2023

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 234: This Podcast is California Approved


In This Episode

  • Erin and Weer’d discuss:
    • the amicus brief that Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols and others filed opposing Oregon's Measure 114;
    • a mass shooting in California, and what it tells us about gun control;
    • a judge putting a hold on Illinois' Assault Weapons Ban -- sort of;
    • a discovery about pistol braces and 922(r) compliance;
    • and Alec Baldwin being charged for the shooting death of Halyna Hutchins.
  • Weer'd interviews Clark, a gun store employee in California, to talk about a new pistol just added to the restrictive CA Handgun Roster -- and it's a SIG P320!
  • Weer'd also interviews Logan Metesh of High Caliber History to talk about a chilling change on the NRA bylaws that allows the liquidation of the guns in the NRA Firearm Museum for any reason.

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Sunday, January 29, 2023

Hasbro Surrenders

Those of you who enjoyed my rant about the perfidy of Hasbro revoking the meant-to-be-irrevocable Open Game License two weeks ago may be curious regarding what craziness has happened since then. 

As it turns out, it was the craziest thing of all: Hasbro has surrendered.

Even though this story broke on Friday, I waited to talk about this because at this point I no longer trust Hasbro to tell me that the sky is blue; I figured this could just as easily have been the Placate before the Assassin Strike. But my favorite gaming lawyer Ian Runkle looked at it and gave it his seal of approval:


I don't know how you feel, but that's good enough for me. It remains to be seen if this is enough to restore good will and trust, or if the damage is done. Personally, I think it's the latter, especially since Paizo et all are still going to create their ORC license. This just seems like good business sense to me; who knows what the next 2, 5, 10, or 20 years will bring. 

I'm also willing to wager fairly heavily that 6e D&D will not be published under any form of OGL, and that people who wish to publish 6e compatible material will have to sign a license even more Draconian (heh) that what Hasbro tried to push with OGL 1.1. 

For those curious about the difference between OGL 1.0a and Creative Commons, the short answer is "not much". There's (currently) only one OGL, which means it's easy to find the terms by which you must abide if you want to publish under it. Creative Commons, however, is a suite of licenses with different modules that can be used, or not, as the licensor desires. 

For example, I publish this blog under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial- No Derivative Works 3.0 License. This means the following:
  1. You are free to copy and redistribute (i.e., share) the material in any medium or format. 
  2. But to do that, you must do so under these conditions:
    • Attribution: You must give me appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the I endorse you or your use.
    • NonCommercial: You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
    • NoDerivatives: If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you may not distribute the modified material.
  3. Creative Commons also has the No Additional Restrictions clause, which means that you may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.
There are of course variations on this license which don't allow sharing and/or which allow commercial uses. The version under which Hasbro published the 5e SRD is much more complicated than the version I use. Since I have no plans to publish anything commercially for 5e, I'm not even going to read it. If you want to do so, knock yourselves out

For a more in-depth explanation of the OGL vs. CC, I direct you to this 90 minute video in which the host talks to Dr. Bob Tarantino, a man who wrote his doctoral dissertation on the (OGL) for his Ph.D. in IP law. 

And with that, I'm going to close with one of my favorite Firefly quotes:

We've done the impossible, and that makes us mighty. 

Saturday, January 28, 2023

"In Defense of the Second Amendment": a Report

Larry Correia's new book, In Defense of the Second Amendment, was released on January 24. It is a fast, easy read that is written in Correia's trademark style where he unapologetically speaks his mind while talking to the reader in a conversational manner.

Disclaimer the First
I know Larry Correia personally. I don't know him well enough to feel justified in calling him my friend, but I like him and respect him as a person, as an author (I've read all but one of his fiction series, and I'm about to start Son of the Black Sword this week), and as a Second Amendment activist. Despite what his detractors say about him, I know for a fact that this man is not a homophobe nor a transphobe, because this is us at a convention in 2019:

That is Larry Correia posing for a photograph with me, a transwoman. Notice how he isn't afraid to put his arm around me. Notice how he doesn't mind that my hand is on his chest. Notice that he's smiling so hard he's squinting.

Disclaimer the Second
Larry Correia reached out to me in 2022 to seek my permission to mention both Operation Blazing Sword and Pink Pistols in his upcoming book. I said yes, not only because I like him and because I trust him to do right by us, but also because he was instrumental in the success of Operation Blazing Sword. Without his assistance in its early days, as he correctly describes in this book, OBS would not be where it is today and might not even exist at all. 

In summary, this isn't going to be an unbiased review because I have strong, deep feelings of admiration and affection for this man. 

This Book Is:
An essential condensation of all the expected firearm prohibition tropes and how to counter them, along with explanations on why the National Firearms Act of 1934 is dumb, how to stop spree shooters, and what you can do to effect positive change within your community, state and nation by repealing bad gun laws. In short, it's  the Second Amendment version of Alinsky's Rules For Radicals in that it's a handy textbook on how to argue for firearm rights and against hoplophobes. 

This Book Is Not:
Going to change the mind of anyone who is in favor of gun control, let alone repeal the Second Amendment, and it will likely alienate a lot of fence-sitters just from the foreword and first chapter alone. While I understand why Larry Corriea equates Democrats (people, not Party) and The Left with anti-gun sentiment, there is a small but essential contingent of pro-gun liberals who will feel alienated, if not outright attacked, by this book. 

I realize that I am on shaky ground by offering advice to a bestselling professional author when I am not one. I do however have some experience in trying to convert people to my point of view regarding firearm ownership and the Second Amendment, and based on this I feel that the book would have broader appeal if it started with Chapter 2, which is both a stronger introduction and less spleen-venting. 

Again, I understand the why of it. Every gun owner has felt this way at some point, and it's a cathartic read. But it's kind of a tall order to say "For any readers who are vehemently anti-gun, I hope that you read this with an open mind, because the Second Amendment is truly for everyone" and expect that open-mindedness after you've spent the first dozen pages telling them what awful people they are. 

In Conclusion
I can already feel the comments section heating up as people type angry replies to this. Everyone has a right to their opinion, and this is mine. It is my sincere hope that Mr. Correia -- whom, again, I deeply admire and respect -- would speak in my defense that I'm entitled to this opinion, even if he thinks it's dumb as rocks. 

In Defense of the Second Amendment is a good book. I like it, I recommend it to all gun owners, and I'm going to use the lessons within it the next time I need to debate a Gun Prohibitionist... but I don't think it's going to win any hearts and minds. 

Addendum: Edited to Add This

Monday, January 23, 2023

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 233: The Gang Talks About Court Cases


In This Episode

It’s an ACP Round Table! Join Weer’d, Erin, David, and Oddball as we discuss:

  • The ATF has their new ruling on Pistol Braces, and it sucks!
  • The ATF and the FBI have a watch list of people that alerts when they buy a gun.  (We already knew this, but it's good to see evidence.)
  • Erin found an amazing tool that shows defensive gun use as it appears in the media aggregated in an interactive map.
  • Last week we talked about the pending Illinois Assault Weapon Ban, and in the time it took to publish that show, the thing passed.  Thankfully, most of the state has chosen not to cooperate!
  • A Federal Judge blocks the New Jersey anti-carry laws.
  • Another Federal Judge allows the same in New York,  but it isn't all bad.
  • We discuss a Canadian Mountie who broke the law, and made out pretty well because he's law enforcement.
  • Finally, Wells Fargo is becoming more anti-gun, this time cancelling the business account of a gun shop in Florida.

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Show Notes

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols Press Release: AC Brief Filed vs. Oregon Measure 114


January 17, 2023

Historically Discriminated Coalition Supports Lawsuit to Protect Marginalized Peoples’ Right to Own Firearms

The Historically Discriminated Coalition has filed an amicus brief in the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon opposing the implementation of Measure 114. The coalition is comprised of four groups: National African American Gun Association, Inc. (NAAGA), Asian Pacific American Gun Owners Association (APAGOA), DC Project Foundation, Inc. (DCPF), and Operation Blazing Sword, Inc. (operating as Operation Blazing Sword - Pink Pistols) (OBSPP).

The brief was filed by attorneys and former state representatives Michael McLane and Matthew Wand on January 13, 2023.

The brief contends that Measure 114 delays and arbitrarily denies marginalized groups the Second Amendment right to own firearms as a means of self-defense. It seeks the protection of the federal court because of the historical precedence of discrimination in Oregon against African Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, women, and LGBTQ people.

“Much like North Carolina’s Pistol Purchase Permit, a Jim Crow-era law which uses subjective criteria to deny black people the ability to own a handgun for protection, Measure 114 fails to clearly define what does and does not disqualify applicants,” said Erin Palette, Founder of Operation Blazing Sword and National Coordinator of Pink Pistols. “Moreover, Measure 114 applies to all firearms, not just handguns, and so in this manner it drinks deeper from the tainted well of discrimination and gives local police the unprecedented ability to deny the right to keep and bear arms to anyone they choose for any reason.”

“Measure 114 does not make me or any other woman safer. It makes us less safe,” said Candy Yow, Oregon coordinator for DC Project Foundation. “When you make it more difficult for women to protect themselves, criminals are emboldened. Women have the constitutional right to protect themselves.”

“Measure 114 degrades the rights of gun owners and prevents people who are attempting to protect themselves from harm by placing financial obstacles to purchase a gun and exercise the most precious right they have, the Second Amendment,” said Philip Smith, President of NAAGA. “The requirement of having to buy a gun permit is in effect a tax on the Second Amendment. This is wrong and will be damaging to those folks, especially in poorer communities where budgets are already stretched. It now costs more to get the gun that you want and need because of Measure 114.”

“Measure 114 is detrimental for not only Asian Pacific Americans, but for all Americans who want to exercise their right to self-defense,” said Patrick Lopez, President of APAGOA. “The rise of racist attacks against Asian Pacific Americans over the past few years was eye-opening for the Asian Pacific American community.  We will defend ourselves and we will not be easy targets or victims.”

NAAGA was founded in 2015 to defend the Second Amendment rights of members of the African American community. With more than 50,000 members who reside in every state and the District of Columbia, NAAGA’s mission is to establish a fellowship by educating about the rich legacy of gun ownership by African Americans, offering training that supports safe gun use for self-defense and sportsmanship, and advocating for the inalienable right to self-defense for African Americans.

APAGOA was founded in 2021 to create a community of gun owners with an Asian Pacific American Heritage.  APAGOA advocates for strong firearms safety, education, and community building initiatives by providing educational materials and other supportive resources to its members and other interested parties.

The DC Project Foundation was founded in 2016 by retired police officer and professional shooting competitor, Dianna Muller.  The nationwide, non-partisan organization of women believe the gun rights are women’s rights, and that education, not legislation, is the key to firearms safety and violence prevention. There are over 3000 members.

Operation Blazing Sword, Inc. was established in 2016, the day after the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shootings, to advocate on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) firearm owners, with specific emphasis on self-defense. It has over 1,500 volunteer firearm instructors in nearly 1,000 locations across all 50 states.  Pink Pistols, founded in 2000 and incorporated into Operation Blazing Sword in 2018, is a shooting society that honors gender and sexual diversity and advocates the responsible use of firearms for self-defense.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

... Get Ahold of Yourself?

Earlier today I received an email about the Priapus Grip, a new product from Black Collar Arms.
The Priapus Grip is symmetrical with a mild palm swell, an arched backstrap that drives the hand into the correct position, and a nearly vertical, relatively square front strap that’s both comfortable and highly indexable. On any rifle or large format pistol, from full-size PRS guns to subguns, the Priapus Grip’s unique shape, angle, size, and grip textures ensure it feels right at home and outperforms the competition. It’s the best AR-compatible grip on the market!
At launch we’re offering laser-cut sand texture grip tape panels in Black, Gray, OD Green, and Brown, as well as rubber pebble texture in Black. One set of panels is included with each Priapus Grip, and additional sets are just $5. These grip tape panels are easily applied by the end user and are durable and reliable, yet remove cleanly should you want to swap them out.
We particularly like running a rubber pebble texture panel on the side that faces the shooter’s body when carrying the rifle on a sling, and sand texture on the rest. Sand texture is as good as it gets for maximizing grip — it does not slip — in any condition and is still comfortable in the hand, while the rubber pebble texture offers a medium grip level and is gentle on clothing and skin. 

If you aren't chortling to yourself at this, your education was deficient, and all will be explained in the email I sent in reply:
To whom it may concern at Black Collar Arms:

I received your email regarding the Priapus Grip.  

Are you aware that in Greek mythology, Priapus was a fertility god whose most prominent feature was an oversized, permanent erection? And that this gave us the medical term priapism, the condition whereby the penis stays erect for hours?

In essence, your new product's name means "big dick grip" to anyone with a classical education. 

If this was deliberate, then well done on the subtle penis joke. 

However, if this was accidental, you might want to hold an emergency meeting of the marketing staff in order to get ahead of this and potentially rename it.

To their credit, Black Collar Arms replied almost immediately:

Hi Erin,

LOL, yes. Everyone seems to love naming their firearm products after Greek gods, so we thought we'd get in on the fun as well and went with the most appropriate god we could think of for the product.

Jolly good,
Jeeves McSorely
Black Collar Arms 

Golf applause to you, sir.

Perhaps Black Collar Arms ought to go, ahem, 'balls deep' and use the phrase "The Priapus Grip: For when you need to stay up" in their advertising? That would be the chef's kiss on this masterpiece.  

By the way, if you want to add testicles to your Big Dick Grip, you can purchase them in either dangling or rigid style and (ahem) mount them to your rail system. 

Gunsticles Tactical Testicles

The Tac-Sac

Monday, January 16, 2023

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 232: Yad Sdrawkcab


In This Episode

  • Things are backwards, so we start with Oddball's review of the Cold Steel Espada.
  • Erin and Weer'd then discuss the news of the new year:
    • We now have a 25th Constitutional/Permitless carry state, and maybe soon a 26th!
    • Shannon Watts is leaving Moms Demand Action, and we speculate what her reasons might be.
    • A woman in Philadelphia defended herself with a lawfully carried gun, and that's not even the most interesting thing about this story.
    • Illinois is attempting to ban "Assault Weapons" and further restrict the Second Amendment to residents.
    • The ATF is further cracking down on 80% Firearms.
    • A friend of Erin was shot in Chicago!
    • And saving the best for last, the Bumpstock Ban has been declared unconstitutional by the 5th Circuit!

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Show Notes

Oddball’s Corner Pocket:

Main Topic:

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Erin Rants About OGL 1.1

You've probably heard about the fuckery that Hasbro, via Wizards of the Coast, tried to pull on third party producers of D&D compatible content. If you haven't, well, sit back and relax, because you're going to hear about it from me.

Since January 5th, people have been asking me about my opinion on this topic, and just when I thought I had a handle on it, a new development would emerge and upend things. But this past Friday I was asked to appear on Episode 305 of Geeks, Gadgets, & Guns to discuss the whole debacle, because I'm the roleplaying subject matter expert of my podcast circle. 

In this episode I rant for about 40 minutes about Hasbro's legal fuckery and why they deserve to lose All The Money. 

Let me know if you're one of the folks who would rather read than listen and I'll see about getting a transcript made. 

Show Notes & Spicy Memes

Monday, January 9, 2023

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 231: The Saga of the Buttmaster


In This Episode

  • Erin and Weer’d discuss:
    • Erin's nomination for a Gundie Award;
    • A man who broke the law to save lives in a horrible blizzard;
    • New Jersey doubles down on the anti-NYSRPA carry laws;
    • Time Square had a terrorist attack with a machete;
    • If you aren't listening to The Reload Podcast, you should;
    • and we recount The Saga of the Serbu Buttmaster!
  • Next, Weer'd brings us his latest fisk of the Brady Campaign, as they attempt to claim that a good guy with a gun rarely if ever stops a bad guy with a gun;
  • and finally, David responds to a previous episode's discussion of a Stop The Bleed class with a segment on tourniquets.

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Show Notes

Main Topic:

Weer’d Audio Fisk:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Left Hooks vs. Right Crosses

During the course of my duties as a speaker for queer rights and Second Amendment rights, I have encountered a fair bit of flak from both sides. The Extreme Left loves that I'm queer but hates that I'm pro-gun, whereas the Extreme Right loves that I'm pro-gun but really wants me to shut up about being queer. 

As a result of this experience, I've noticed a distinct but repeatable difference between how the Left and the Right deal with people to whom they object. I've spoken about this before, but to the best of my knowledge I've never codified it in print until now. This may not be a new discovery, but I haven't seen anyone else express it like this. 

When the Left objects to you, they unperson you. On social media this results in unfriending and likely blocking; in real life this is typically a call for you to be silenced via job loss and deplatforming. On the one hand, this behavior is refreshing in that you know exactly where you stand with them; there is no ambiguity, no what-ifs. On the other hand, this state of affairs makes it effectively impossible to repair that relationship, should you desire that; you will have to wait for them to wish it, which is difficult because you have been excluded from their lives and their minds. 

When the Right objects to you, the exact opposite happens: they don't want you censored, they want you and your opinions put on the stand so that they and others can argue with you. Sometimes this argument is a good-faith debate, sometimes it boils down to little more than an "I'm right and you're wrong and I can mathematically prove you're a piece of shit" diatribe, but whatever the format, they hardly ever break off communication. Now sometimes that communication isn't worth the effort, but it's still there, and they will frequently seek you out, even (especially) when you want them to leave you alone. 

This could probably be reduced to "The Left blocks you, and the Right makes you block them," but I feel that's an over-simplification. It's also an over-simplification to say that the Right wants logic and the Left wants emotional connection. I think it might be fairest to say that it's about prioritization of resource management. 

Do with this information what you will. 

Monday, January 2, 2023

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 230: Ringing in the New Year


In This Episode

Weer'd didn't want to have an episode this week, but Erin twisted his arm and gave us this free-form show (or, as Erin called it, "A Mag Dump without any potty words"). So join Weer’d, Erin, David, and Oddball as they talk about their Christmas/Hanukkah and reflect on what the new year may bring!

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Sunday, January 1, 2023

Nominated for the 2023 Gundie Awards!

Today I learned of the existence of the Gundies, which is "a set of awards that recognize top creators in the firearm industry. The awards are voted on by the community and provide a platform for creators to gain exposure and recognition. The Gundies also promote responsible firearm ownership and showcase creators from all backgrounds." 

Apparently the Gundies are basically the Oscars of the gun world. They're only a few years old, but apparently "the usual guntubers" have talked about them. This explains why I haven't heard of them: I don't watch a lot of gun videos. Instead, I learned about them because I received an email telling me that I was one of the most requested nominees for the category of Top Voices of the 2A this year, and that I should ask my friends to vote for me every day in January. 

If I win, I will get to attend a Range Day, Expo & Ceremony at Drive Tanks in Texas. Presumably I will be allowed to drive a tank?

If you are inclined to vote for such a thing, please register at this link  and vote every day this month. I'm up against some pretty serious competition, like Colion Noir and the Armed Attorneys, so I need all the help I can get!

Thank you, and special thanks to those of you who will vote every day this month!

The Fine Print

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

Creative Commons License

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