SCOPE NY

Briefings  from SCOPE President, Tom Reynolds

  • 09/10/2021 8:44 PM | Anonymous

    Young on Old Meanings  by Tom Reynolds

    In Wednesday’s email, SCOPE talked about the Left’s attempt to turn Constitutional Originalism around and use it against the 2nd Amendment.  As usual, Doctor Robert Young was thinking along lines similar to SCOPE when he wrote an article in Doctors For Responsible Gun Ownership entitled “Corpus Linguistics & Bearing Arms: Much Ado About Nothing”.  Below are some of the highlights from his article and the full text can be read at: Corpus Linguistics & Bearing Arms: Much Ado About Nothing .

    Dr. Young wrote about Dennis Baron’s attempts to flip Constitutional Originalism, written in the Duke Center for Firearms Law (DCFL).  Young wrote:

    “DCFL contends that because nearly all the examples they find of the phrase ‘bear arms’ in the English language are used to refer to military conduct, the Second Amendment must only guarantee ‘the people’ the right to ’bear arms’ in the service of the state (i.e., a state-appointed militia). Just so they don’t look entirely one-sided, Baron does qualify ‘. . . [I]t’s not clear that any text has one single, original meaning that everyone would have shared.’”

    “Baron also quotes the amicus brief by Everytown for Gun Safety [sic] in NYSRPA v. Corlett to say that ‘. . . America [was] never [a] place . . . where people carried weapons freely and routinely, particularly in urban areas.’ Utter nonsense, which anyone familiar with American history through the entire 19th century could refute.”

    Dr. Young then goes on the attack:

    “The militia developed from the beginning of the colonial period as groups of townsmen who came together to provide for their mutual protection…the Colonies’ militias were simply the assembled groups of local ones under the command of elected leaders. This was still essentially individuals making their own decisions to come together, exercising their Second Amendment rights ‘to keep and bear arms’ in the common defense, an extension of their pre-existing right to self-defense.”

    “The point Baron’s linguistic method makes is that ‘. . . nonmilitary uses of ‘bear arms’ are almost nonexistent in any sort of text’ of the Founding era. But let’s ask, how exactly are ‘the people’ supposed to get the arms they ‘keep’ at home to the militia’s gathering place if they don’t have the equal right to “bear” them to there, as well as in battle?”

    Dr. Young concludes the debate with quotes from people who were actually alive during the Revolutionary period:

    “We have scores of quotes by the authors of the Constitution and their peers that manifest their insistence on the importance of the citizenry owning and using (therefore carrying as well as ‘bearing’) arms routinely for proper purposes, including hunting, target practice, and self-protection. Gentlemen in America like Washington and Jefferson carried pistols routinely. More common folk had their muskets and rifles at hand whenever they decided they could be useful.”

    “From WallbuildersJohn Dickinson, Constitution signer: affirmed that inalienable rights such as self-defense were rights ‘which God gave to you and which no inferior power has a right to take away.’

    Fisher Ames, a framer of the Bill of Rights: ‘The right . . . of bearing arms . . . is declared to be inherent in the people.’” 

    “From Buckeye FirearmsThomas Jefferson: ‘Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks.’
    Jefferson, again: No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.’
    And again: ‘The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature [as to] disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.’

    “From the Lonang Institute: Revolutionary militia colonel and then Federal judge, Henry St. George Tucker, 1803: ‘In many parts of the United States, a man no more thinks of going out of his house on any occasion, without his rifle or musket in his hand, than a European fine gentleman without his sword by his side.’  

    These quotes are just a fraction of the evidence. There is a great deal more, from many, many sources. “

    “The Second Amendment’s purpose is timeless, and meant the same in 1789 as in 1998, and as in 2021.”

  • 09/08/2021 4:43 PM | Anonymous

    The Left on Rights by Tom Reynolds

    Recently, there have been some interesting articles about our rights.  A bit legalistic but still interesting thoughts.

    One article asked why owning a firearm and healthcare are both being defined as “rights”? What if the traditional “right” to own a gun was changed and redefined in the same way as the new “right” to healthcare?

    Healthcare as a “right” was a selling point for Obamacare, which mandated that everyone must have health insurance and if you can’t afford it the government will pay for it.  If owning a gun is a “right” in the same way that the Left defined Obamacare, then the government should mandate that everyone has to have a gun and if you can’t afford one the government will pay for it.  The right to keep and bear arms would mean that you have the right to have someone (the government) provide you with a firearm.      

    Let’s flip it and define the “right” to health care in the same way that the 2nd Amendment is traditionally defined.  The 2nd Amendment traditionally means that you are allowed to own and carry any firearm you can legally acquire. You can buy one, receive it as a gift, or build one yourself. And once you acquire it, it is like any other property, it cannot be taken from you without the due process of law. (At least that’s how it is supposed to work, according to the Constitution.)

    Applying this to Healthcare, it would mean that we have the right to see a doctor and pay for his services. It would give you the right to contract with anyone who might provide you with health care. Someone else might voluntarily pay for it out of charity or you might contract with an insurance company to pay for it. If you can obtain health care by any such legal means, government may not stop you or take it away from you.

    A right means you have the freedom to act, not that anyone, particularly the government at the expense of taxpayers, will provide you with the means.  Does the 1st Amendment right to free speech mean the government has to provide you with the means of speaking or writing?

    Under either definition of a “right”, the Left loses the debate when both “rights” are defined in the same way.  But consistency was never a goal of the left.

    In another attack on 2A rights, some gun grabbing organizations are again trying to chip away at “Heller and McDonald” by trying to turn Constitutional Originalism back on itself.  Originalism generally implies that the common meaning of words at the time of the Revolution is how the Constitution should be interpreted.   The left argues that the “right to…bear arms” outside the home was only used in a military sense when the Constitution was written, therefore, only the military could “bear arms” outside the home.  Civilians could “keep” arms in their homes but they could not “bear arms” outside the home.  (I wonder what Daniel Boone would have said about that interpretation?) 

    The 2nd Amendment was definitely aimed at civilians having the right to “keep and bear arms”.  Why would the founders have added a phrase that only applied to the military in the middle of an amendment that only applied to civilians?   “Keep” and “bear” are only 2 words apart in one sentence.  Is it likely that they would two opposite meanings?

    Words could – and still do – have different common use meanings.  Does a law forbidding carrying a firearm in a bank also prohibit carrying a firearm by a river?  What prevents “bear arms” from applying to both the military and civilians?

    One article argued that the primary responsibility of the federal government is to protect our liberty and our individual rights as guaranteed by our Constitution; its primary responsibility is NOT to keep us safe.  The oath that Presidents and other government officials take would seem to give some support to that idea since the oath requires them to preserve and protect the Constitution and says nothing about keeping us safe. 

    Also, courts have ruled that police do not have an obligation to protect us. So, if the government’s job is to keep our rights safe, and not keep us safe, there is no basis for taking away our guns since to “keep and bear arms” is one of our rights that the government must protect.

    However, the preamble to the Constitution says it was established to “provide for the common defence”, so there is a basis for saying that the Constitution is both to protect our rights and keep us safe.  And on such questions, lawyers make a living.

  • 09/08/2021 10:34 AM | Anonymous

    The Left on Rights
    by: Tom Reynolds

    Recently, there have been some interesting articles about our rights.  A bit legalistic but still interesting thoughts.

    One article asked why owning a firearm and healthcare are both being defined as “rights”? What if the traditional “right” to own a gun was changed and redefined in the same way as the new “right” to healthcare?

    Healthcare as a “right” was a selling point for Obamacare, which mandated that everyone must have health insurance and if you can’t afford it the government will pay for it.  If owning a gun is a “right” in the same way that the Left defined Obamacare, then the government should mandate that everyone has to have a gun and if you can’t afford one the government will pay for it.  The right to keep and bear arms would mean that you have the right to have someone (the government) provide you with a firearm.      

    Let’s flip it and define the “right” to health care in the same way that the 2nd Amendment is traditionally defined.  The 2nd Amendment traditionally means that you are allowed to own and carry any firearm you can legally acquire. You can buy one, receive it as a gift, or build one yourself. And once you acquire it, it is like any other property, it cannot be taken from you without the due process of law. (At least that’s how it is supposed to work, according to the Constitution.)

    Applying this to Healthcare, it would mean that we have the right to see a doctor and pay for his services. It would give you the right to contract with anyone who might provide you with health care. Someone else might voluntarily pay for it out of charity or you might contract with an insurance company to pay for it. If you can obtain health care by any such legal means, government may not stop you or take it away from you.

                A right means you have the freedom to act, not that anyone, particularly the government at the expense of taxpayers, will provide you with the means.  Does the 1st Amendment right to free speech mean the government has to provide you with the means of speaking or writing?

    Under either definition of a “right”, the Left loses the debate when both “rights” are defined in the same way.  But consistency was never a goal of the left.

    In another attack on 2A rights, some gun grabbing organizations are again trying to chip away at “Heller and McDonald” by trying to turn Constitutional Originalism back on itself.  Originalism generally implies that the common meaning of words at the time of the Revolution is how the Constitution should be interpreted.   The left argues that the “right to…bear arms” outside the home was only used in a military sense when the Constitution was written, therefore, only the military could “bear arms” outside the home.  Civilians could “keep” arms in their homes but they could not “bear arms” outside the home.  (I wonder what Daniel Boone would have said about that interpretation?) 

    The 2nd Amendment was definitely aimed at civilians having the right to “keep and bear arms”.  Why would the founders have added a phrase that only applied to the military in the middle of an amendment that only applied to civilians?   “Keep” and “bear” are only 2 words apart in one sentence.  Is it likely that they would two opposite meanings?

         

    Words could – and still do – have different common use meanings.  Does a law forbidding carrying a firearm in a bank also prohibit carrying a firearm by a river?  What prevents “bear arms” from applying to both the military and civilians?

    One article argued that the primary responsibility of the federal government is to protect our liberty and our individual rights as guaranteed by our Constitution; its primary responsibility is NOT to keep us safe.  The oath that Presidents and other government officials take would seem to give some support to that idea since the oath requires them to preserve and protect the Constitution and says nothing about keeping us safe. 

    Also, courts have ruled that police do not have an obligation to protect us. So, if the government’s job is to keep our rights safe, and not keep us safe, there is no basis for taking away our guns since to “keep and bear arms” is one of our rights that the government must protect.

    However, the preamble to the Constitution says it was established to “provide for the common defence”, so there is a basis for saying that the Constitution is both to protect our rights and keep us safe.  And on such questions, lawyers make a living.


  • 09/02/2021 6:20 PM | Anonymous

    North: “the best armed criminal enterprise in the history of mankind”  by Tom Reynolds

    U.S. weapons and military equipment abandoned by the Biden administration in Afghanistan will be reverse-engineered by China and Russia and then used against American interests, retired Lt. Col. Oliver North said on Wednesday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily with host Alex Marlow.

    The Biden administration left behind “some of the most sophisticated weapons and equipment we’ve ever made for the military,” North stated. He warned, “It’s going to be reverse-engineered in China. It will be reverse-engineered in Russia. It will be used against us in other campaigns.”

    North predicted that the Taliban, ISIS, and Haqqani Network would collectively become “the best armed criminal enterprise in the history of mankind” due to the Pentagon’s abandonment of military equipment, vehicles, and weaponry in Afghanistan.

    He said, “What’s happening to a lot of [abandoned equipment] is that they’re being dragged across the border in Conex boxes and on trucks. A HET is a heavy equipment transporter. When we offload a tank — an M1 tank, 70 tons — off a ship, and set it down on the pier, it’s loaded onto a HET a transported to where it’s going to fight, because you don’t want to wear out the treads and don’t want to burn up more fuel than you need to need to.”

     Heavy equipment transporters have been used to transport two M1 tanks from Afghanistan into Pakistan, North claimed. He remarked, “They’re going to be heading to the port where they will be loaded aboard a ship and taken to communist China for exploitation. That’s what’s happening to anywhere between five and ten of every piece of equipment. The Taliban, by the way, are getting rich on this. They’re — quote — selling them.”

    The Oryx Blog detailed the losses of U.S. military weapons and equipment provided to the Afghan military in a post entitled, “Disaster At Hand: Documenting Afghan Military Equipment Losses Since June 2021 until August 14, 2021.”

     “Now, other people will be using our weapons to shoot at us,” he concluded. “We’re going to see a lot of that weaponry used against us in a lot of places.”

    Oliver North will be the main speaker at SCOPE’s banquet in Utica, NY on October 16th.  Join us to meet him and hear his take on America, Afghanistan and the 2nd Amendment.

    (For more banquet information click here.)

  • 08/31/2021 8:28 PM | Anonymous

    Impeachment and Succession  by Tom Reynolds

    There are calls to impeach Joe Biden over the Afghanistan debacle.  But if you read the Constitution, it says that the President “…shall be removed from office On Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”  It says nothing about incompetence, so the Afghanistan debacle may not be a basis for impeachment.  

    Am I arguing against impeaching Biden on a constitutional basis?

    Anything to stop Kamala Harris from becoming President. 

    But since the Democrats didn’t seem to have an issue with impeachment when Trump was president, will the Republicans do turnabout-is-fair-play?  Again, I remind them that Kamala Harris is next in line.

    Past Presidents have joked that no one would want to assassinate them because they wouldn’t want the VP to become president.  Did Biden nominate Harris to keep the 25th Amendment from being used against him?  

    Speaking of presidential impeachment and succession, here are the potential successors to Biden, in their order of succession.

    Vice President Kamala Harris.  56 Years old Senator (2017-2021) and former Attorney General (2011-2017) from California.  Before that her job was being a girl friend to politically powerful men.  As a presidential candidate in 2020, she was so unpopular that she couldn’t get to the Iowa caucuses before dropping out but Biden named her as VP as a sop to the radical left.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. 81 years old Representative from California since 1987.  She urges an 83 years old Supreme Court Justice to retire due to age, but does not see the irony of this. 

    President pro tempore of the Senate Patrick Leahy.  81 years old Senator from Vermont since 1974.  (See Pelosi’s previous remark on age.)

    Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.  59 years old lifetime member of the D.C. Swamp.  He is a major adviser on the Afghanistan debacle.  He was Susan Rice’s deputy when she was Obama’s National Security advisor so he has experience taking orders from Rice.  National Intelligence Director Avril Haines also worked for Rice but Haines is not in the line of succession.  (For those who don’t keep up on D.C. politics, Rice is believed to be the person behind the scenes, pulling the strings on Biden and is the liaison with Barack Obama.  You remember him!) 

    Secretary of Treasury Janet Yellin.  75 years old academic and longtime member of the Federal Reserve section of the D.C. Swamp.  Appointed by Obama, President Trump thought so much of her economics that he did NOT reappoint her as Federal Reserve Chairman.

    Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.  68 years old retired Army general who believed “sensitivity training” was such a military priority that he called a 60 days time-out for the military to discuss it.  (The Taliban did not honor his time-out.)  He says Critical race Theory (white people are inherently racist) is not being taught in the Military but the West Point Superintendent says it is being taught there.  A major advisor on the Afghanistan debacle.

    Attorney General Merrick Garland.  68 years old lawyer, longtime member of the Justice Department and federal judge since 1997.  Mitch McConnell’s greatest contribution to America was preventing Garland from being appointed to the Supreme Court.  Under Garland, the Department of Justice just created the position of Chief Diversity Officer and does NOT label Black Lives Matter and Antifa as Domestic Terrorists.

    For your information, the FBI (a branch of the Garland’s Department of Justice) relies on the following definition of domestic terrorism: “…acts of violence that [violate] the criminal laws of the United States or any state, committed by individuals or groups without any foreign direction, and appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population, or influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion, and occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.”

    Any resemblance to BLM and Antifa there?

    Obviously, succession recently became an issue in New York State.  We had previously warned that new Governor Kathy Hochul would probably veer radically left in order to win next year’s gubernatorial primary.  She needed a Lieutenant Governor, so Hochul appointed an anti-police, pro-criminal, radical leftist from New York City as her Lieutenant Governor. State Senator Brian Benjamin, who will be serving as the number two in state government, has called for defunding the police, championed more rights and privileges for criminals and voted for record tax & spending increases.

    Thank goodness there is a 2nd Amendment.  Does anyone in government have any ties to the American Constitution, American values and American traditions?

  • 08/25/2021 10:31 AM | Anonymous

    Yates Conversations  by Tom Reynolds

    Last Saturday, Yates County SCOPE had a terrific Pig Roast event with an enthusiastic crowd and numerous political candidates in attendance. Jack Prendergast and all the people who volunteered their time must be congratulated on a successful event where 2nd Amendment supporters could get together to hob nob with each other.  We also learned a lot in the speeches and during follow up conversations.

    Obviously, the wake of Cuomo’s resignation was a major topic.

    Two things about Cuomo seem to be often repeated facts and should not be forgotten:  his life is politics and he is an unforgiving bully.  Translation: no one expects him to become a monk or do anything that would pave his road to sainthood.

    It appears that he will NOT be impeached so he is free to run for federal or state offices in the future. 

    Money gives him leverage.  Cuomo has about $18 million in his campaign treasury and the rules for its use are very loose.  There is no time limit on its use, as long as he is alive.  He can use it for legal fees if he is sued - which seems almost certain.  He can use it in some, but not all, personal political campaigns that he might mount in the future.  (He may never go away.)  He can donate it to other political campaigns to keep up his personal influence.

    NY Attorney General Letitia James has been absolutely drooling over the opportunity to run for governor, even before Cuomo was out of the way.    She is also the one trying to break up the NRA to further her far-left credentials.  Since a report that her office prepared was the nail in Cuomo’s coffin, will Cuomo seek revenge and use his money and influence and the time he now has on his hands to deny her?  Does a bear…well, you know the rest. 

    New Governor Kathy Hochul has already signaled she is going to run for election in 2022; no surprise there.  She has to win the Democrat primary and those usually attract about a third of the voters that will vote in November’s election.  The far-left Democrats have gained power in the Democrat party because they turn out and vote in primaries.  Letitia James has already staked her claim on the far left so will Hochul move radically left to steal those people?  This could lead to a difficult year for the 2nd Amendment with Hochul and James trying to out-Cuomo Cuomo in attacking 2A.  It was also mentioned that Hochul is looking for a Lieutenant Governor candidate to replace herself and, although no one was named, it was hinted that we will not be happy with the candidates. 

    NY City mayor Bill DiBlasio will certainly be interested.  As we have previously pointed out, he could unite New Yorkers across political parties since no one wants him to be governor.

    Now here’s an interesting kicker.  Will NY Senator Kristin Gillibrand be interested in running for governor?  That raises the possibility of a Senate seat being open and, as pointed out, an unimpeached Andrew Cuomo is eligible and has money to pave the way by investing in Gillibrand’s campaign.  Loyalty to his former Lieutenant Governor will probably not be an issue for Cuomo.  Unlikely political alliances have been formed on less.

    State Senator George Borrello made an important point that we are constantly on the defensive as the left doesn’t hesitate to introduce hordes of new anti-gun bills that have to be fought.  (About 100 gun related bills were introduced this year at the state and federal level.)  Borrello is right, we need to stop playing defense and start playing offense.  Of course, for this strategy to be successful, pro-gun politicians have to walk-the-walk and the voters need to hold them responsible.

    It’s no secret that Democrats are generally anti-2nd Amendment (especially the leadership and far left radicals) and Republicans are generally pro-2nd Amendment.  There is a reasonably good chance that Republicans could regain both the House and the Senate in the 2022 elections and could begin to safeguard 2A as well as all our Constitutional rights.  But the last two House Speakers, John Boehner and Paul Ryan, have been disappointments to everyone but the Democrats.  Right now, Kevin McCarthy is in line to be the Speaker if the Republicans gain control.  We need to send a clear message to our representatives that they better vote for a Speaker who will stand up for Constitutional principles.  If that’s Kevin McCarthy…great.  But if they think he will be another Boehner / Ryan, they can’t let D.C. politics direct their vote. 

    By the way, the Speaker does not have to be a sitting Representative.  I understand Donald Trump isn’t doing anything.  Can you imagine the left media’s reaction to that!   

    Michael Henry, who is seeking the Republican nomination for Attorney General in 2022 also spoke and spent a lot of time talking to people.  It’s good to know that we have already surfaced a candidate for that position, fifteen months before the election.  MICHAELHENRYFORAG.com

    Given that the Democrats have a veto proof majority in both New York houses, it’s doubtful if we will make any inroads concerning the 2nd Amendment, until that changes.  Which is exactly why SCOPE keeps pushing voting, voting, voting!

  • 08/24/2021 12:30 PM | Anonymous

    Cuomo and North  by Tom Reynolds

    If you are a gun owner in New York State, at times you feel like you are alone.  Your government at the state and federal level is against you and the media treats you like poison.

    Once in awhile there is a cause to celebrate and the downfall of 2nd Amendment enemy #1, Andrew Cuomo, certainly qualifies – if for whatever reason.  We don’t know what the future holds but we shouldn’t miss the chance to enjoy the moment.  Join us at the SCOPE banquet on October 16th in Utica and join with your fellow gun defenders in celebration of Cuomo’s exit.

    At the SCOPE banquet, Lt. Colonel Oliver North will be the main speaker and will be available before the banquet for personal interaction.  You may have noticed that he is popping up on many TV news programs for interviews and commentary on the situation in Afghanistan.  He certainly qualifies from his experience with major international incidents while in Ronald Reagan’s White House.

    October 16th will be the chance to hear from North at a most opportune time.  Join us. 

  • 08/23/2021 10:22 AM | Anonymous

    Serving the People  by Tom Reynolds

    Afghan Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar appeared in a Twitter video alongside other Taliban leaders, in which he pronounced victory in Afghanistan.  “We have achieved an unexpected victory. Now is the time to test, to show how we serve our people and ensure their future in the best possible way.” Within hours of Barader’s announcement, Reuters quoted another Taliban official as saying, “We understand people kept weapons for personal safety. They can now feel safe. We are not here to harm innocent civilians.”

    Isn’t it interesting that the first things that repressive regimes do, once they are in power, is to disarm the citizens while also saying that the government is there to serve the people.

    Rod Serling’s Twilight Zone TV program once had an episode about aliens landing on earth.  The earthlings found a book written in the alien language and translated the title: How to Serve Man.  Because of the title, earthlings are entering the alien’s ship to go back to the alien’s world.  In the final scene, someone screams, “Don’t go.  I’ve translated the rest of the book. How to Serve Man is a cookbook”!

    As the saying goes, “Why would the government want to disarm its citizens unless the government was going to do something for which the citizens would shoot them?

    Pray for the people of Afghanistan and pray for our own nation.

  • 08/20/2021 9:54 PM | Anonymous

    Oliver North  by Tom Reynolds

    10,000 Americans in danger behind enemy lines as well as thousands more of our friends.

    The featured speaker at our banquet on October 16th had a lot to say about the situation in Afghanistan.

    Come to our banquet and hear more from a man who has been in the White House during crises.

    Lt. Col. Oliver North joined Sean Hannity tonight to discuss the Biden catastrophe in Afghanistan.

  • 08/19/2021 8:49 PM | Anonymous

    2A Lessons from Afghanistan  by Tom Reynolds

    Joe Biden wanted to withdraw from Afghanistan in the worst possible way and that is exactly how he did it – in the worst possible way!!!

    Biden wants to disarm American citizens but he left thousands of weapons, many military vehicles and even drones behind for a radical Muslim terrorist movement to use against us.  Which begs the question: how well thought out are Biden’s and the left’s priority for taking guns away from American citizens?  Is the left’s promise that the government will protect us as credible as Biden’s words that a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan is “not inevitable”?

    There are reports of Taliban fighters rounding up weapons from Afghans.  A Taliban official told Reuters “We understand people kept weapons for personal safety. They can now feel safe. We are not here to harm innocent civilians.”  Doesn’t that sound similar to the rhetoric President Biden and the Democrat leadership has been telling the American public?  The Taliban isn’t engaging in gun confiscation; it’s like gun buy backs only without money.

    Joe Biden and the left want to eliminate most bail and empty our jails, since they believe it’s racism and not crime that put the convicts in prison.  Apparently, they have the same feeling about 5,000 of Afghanistan’s most dangerous terrorism captives, that were set free after the Taliban seized control of the former American base at Bagram.  It contained the “highest value” Taliban, al-Qaeda and Islamic State fighters captured on the battlefield. Those freed terrorists, like American criminals that are being released without bail or to protect the criminals from Covid, would never dream of returning to their previous evil ways.  Right? 

    Not long ago, Biden implied that the government could use “F-15s and maybe some nuclear weapons” against those who would “take on the government”.  How many F15’s and nuclear weapons did the Taliban have? 

    Biden’s last statement implying the use of F-15s, nuclear weapons and advanced weaponry against American citizens deserves further exploration.

    Lieutenant Colonel Wayne Phelps (USMC Retired) has written a terrific book called “On Killing Remotely”.  It tells everything one might hope to know about drones (Remotely Piloted Aircraft or RPA’s) and especially “The Psychology of Killing with Drones”

    In the section entitled, The Decision Not to Kill: A Moral Victory, Phelps describes, “On rare occasions those who are commanded to kill human beings have the remarkable moral fiber necessary to stare directly into the face of the obedience-demanding authority and refuse to kill”.  As an example, Anwar al-Awlaki was an American citizen, born in New Mexico, whose loyalty was to Al Qaeda – which, as we know, is dedicated to killing Americans.  The American government had designated al-Awlaki as a Tier 1 target for killing by RPA for, as Phelps puts it, … a laundry list of justifiable reasons.”  Legally, al-Awlaki was a domestic terrorist living abroad and it was a law enforcement issue not a military issue.  But because he was in the hinterlands of Yemen, beyond the reach of law enforcement, the killing task was given to the military.  Obama would personally be calling to authorize taking the shot.

    The RPA pilot is quoted as saying, “Since this guy was an American citizen, people had a problem within the (RPA) squadron.  We thought it was illegal and refused to do it.  When the leadership told them to shut up and color (follow orders) that commander was dismissed and that line was taken away from us and given to the CIA…They (the CIA) had different rules to fight under”.

    Al-Alwaki was killed by RPA strike in Yemen in 2011.

    American soldiers refused to kill an American citizen, simply because he was an American and in spite there being no doubt about him being involved in murders of Americans.  The American Civil Liberties Union should be proud!  Perhaps Biden, and more importantly the entire leftist movement, should realize that the American military’s human beings are not the same as the drones they operate.  They have minds and consciences and took an oath to defend the Constitution. (Something many on the left did – including Biden - but maybe aren’t exactly rabid about following).  

    Phelp’s book also explores the dangers of removing human beings from the decision-making process about killing human beings; just create an algorithm and let the robots take over.  Weren’t there Arnold Schwarzenegger movies about that subject?  

    Of course, the “top brass” in the military are political appointments and may be willing to buy position with loyalty to a politician rather than the Constitution.  Have they become a part of the D.C. Swamp?  (Could I be referring to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley?)  Would Milley “have the remarkable moral fiber necessary to stare directly into the face of the obedience-demanding authority (Biden or Susan Rice) and refuse to kill.”         

    On the other hand, events indicate that the CIA seems to have its feet firmly planted in the muddy bottom of the D.C. Swamp. 

    The military take an oath that they only have to obey the “lawful” orders of their superiors.  Do the D.C. Swamp denizens take a similar oath or does politics make all things lawful?

    What was it that the forefathers were concerned about:  Big government?  Politicians dedicated to careers rather than country?  Americans’ rights?    

    The topic of using the military against American citizens should be explored in much more depth.  But the point is that there are those (many?) in the American Military who would resist using military force against Americans.  But probably not so many D.C. Swamp denizens would share that same ethical and moral values.  And the latter are the same people that want to take away your guns.

A 2nd Amendment Defense Organization, defending the rights of New York State gun owners to keep and bear arms!

PO Box 165
East Aurora, NY 14052

SCOPE is a 501(c)4 non-profit organization.

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