Wednesday, October 1, 2008

What do you think about gun laws?

As you already know, because I have told you many times, I was raised around many very wise people. Some were my family, and some were my friends, and some were just acquaintances. Most of the wisest people that I have ever known never had a very good formal education.

Maybe something about me that you didn’t know is that I was raised in a time when most people, including myself, was not far from a gun. My whole family, all the men, and most of the women, are very good with a gun. When I was a young man, I always had a 22 pistol and a 222 rifle in my Jeep. The truck that I rode to work in had a gun rack with two rifles in it and a pistol in a holster hanging on the same rack. Most of us were from ranching families and it was an obligation to shoot a coyote if you saw one, no matter whose property it was on. And, when you told the property owner, he would thank you. There were sheep on all the ranches and they were very susceptible to predators.

My Uncle was on the U.S. Army Rifle Team, and did exhibition shooting. My dad and other uncle were almost as good with a gun as he was. When ever they went to a turkey shoot, the people that would run the turkey shoot would only let them compete against each other, or a lot of times they would just give them each a turkey, then just let them exhibition shoot for the rest of the match.

I’ve killed everything that squirmed, ran, or fluttered, until I couldn’t stand the thought of doing it any more. My dad always said “don’t kill anything that you don’t intend to kill“, and “don’t kill anything that you don’t intent to eat”. I’ve eaten some pretty interesting stuff. My whole family still hunts game animals and it doesn’t bother me, I know that there is great fitness in killing your own food.

What I’m saying is that I was raised around guns, and I don’t have that visceral fear that I see in people nowadays. When they see a gun they react like they just about stepped on a snake. So, I feel differently than most of the people that I know now.

I have had a gun accidentally discharge on me on three different occasions. All of then discharged safely into a dirt bank, thanks to the training that my family gave me on handling guns safely. Most of the people that handle guns a lot will tell you a similar story. My family taught me to “Never chamber a bullet until you intend to use it, and always have your gun pointed in a safe direction while chambering or un-chambering a round”.

Some of the other training that I remember was “Gunpowder and alcohol don’t mix”. That means when you’re drinking don’t use a gun. Some of my family violated that rule a little bit, but nobody got hurt. Another saying was: “It’s the unloaded gun that is the one that kills somebody”. What that meant is to always check to make sure that your gun is unloaded every time you hand it to somebody, or put it away, or any time that it is supposed to be unloaded. You always check.

“When crossing a fence, always un-chamber your bullet, lean the gun against the post and go to the next post to cross, go back and get your gun.” There were so many rules for double checking gun safety when I was growing up, that guns were fairly safe.

Now, as you might have guessed, I’m heading in a direction that I’ve always wondered about. Who has the right to own a gun? The U.S. constitution gives an American in good standing as a Citizen of the United States the right to bear arms.

As in the second amendment: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

Now for some more stuff that you didn’t know about me. I was born right after World War Two, where the sting of Nazi Germany and what they did to the Jews was still fresh in people’s minds. One of the things that was pounded into my head along with my other gun training is that my gun was mine, and it was nobody else’s business, and that if I have guns, it is nobody else’s business. I was told to “Never, ever, under any circumstance register my guns with any one especially not the Government“. And the reason that I was given as an example, was what happened in Nazi Germany. Because they were unable to fight back, millions of Jews were lined up and marched into ovens where they were killed in great masses. You can imagine the impression that makes on a young mind.

I was told that “Ben Franklin said, that we should always be wary of an unreasonable and out of control government, and we should always be ready to take it back if they stray too far”.

Now to deepen what you don’t know about me. When I used to target shoot with my favorite target shooting 22 rifle, that my cousin “Oregon” wore out for me, I used to practice shooting without flinching or blinking. I would watch the bullet arch into the target. I soon found that I always shot a rifle with out flinching or blinking and I always made head shots, because I didn’t like killing. But, I killed for food, because that was what I was taught to do. It was only after I married my wife that she told me that I didn’t have to kill things if I didn’t want to. I have to say that it had honestly never occurred to me that I didn’t have to kill things. If I knew that my family or my life was threatened by an intruder I’m sure that I would shoot them with out flinching or blinking. I like most animals better than I like most people.

So now I get around to the bottom line of this post. What kind of gun control should we have? Should people have to register their weapons? And if weapons were registered wouldn’t that just make a “Hit List”. We were recently reminded of the kind of irresponsible people that there are out there when the North Coast Journal published all of the names of people that have gun permits in Humboldt County. It pains me to be criticizing this poor woman who is probably just trying to make a living, but she seems to think that all names should be published so hers is Heidi Walters, and she writes for the north Coast Journal.

Please read her well written article. Then come back here and tell me what you think about gun registration. You can’t comment on their site without leaving your return address. You can say anything you like here. I have absolutely no way of tracing any comment back to you, so you can speak freely here, but of course I’ll delete the ridiculous comments after a while, but I will leave the well thought out ones.

Please comment if you are a journalist, a gun owner, or a gun hater, but try to give a reason for the way you feel… I did! This is the link to the gun article.


Anonymous said...

Guns scare me.

Guns are for killing.

Rifles are for killing animals.

Handguns are for self defense(killing whatever is attacking you)

Assault rifles and machine guns are for killing people. Fast.

I have never owned or fired a gun. I never want to touch a gun.

I will, however, stand up and fight to the death when they try to take away my right to own one.

“A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

They can pry the Bill of Rights from my cold dead hands.

spyrock said...

i don't think about gun laws. i used to listen to rush limpbaugh
since his rio vista days. it was about the only station i could tune in at work. every election he would bring up this issue saying that his guy was for guns and the guy he didn't like wasn't.
but for years i heard him put down mccain and now i hear that he is supporting mccain. it's really been about 10 years since i've listened to rush, they took my radio away, no more newspapers either. almost everythings against the rules where i work now.
as far as i know, no one has a problem getting guns, so what's the big deal. are decent citizens being arrested for owning guns up there? i know the terroists don't seem to be having any problem getting weapons. there's a movie out on dvd that i saw the other night, ironman, about how arms dealers sell to anybody with the cash or probably with a loan from one of the banks y'all are going to bailout. the real issue here is that some people know how fond people are of their guns and rush tells little johnnie. hey john, if clinton gets elected, he's going to take away all your guns. well, clinton missed alot of them it seems. plenty still out there.
is this what they call the "smoking gun." somebody must be smoking something.
i've was around guns all the time when i was young, and i had my share of the plucking and getting the animal ready to eat. i was taught that was just as important as making a good shot. they sort of played a joke on people when they went deer hunting for the first time up near olema at the trutman ranch. they had a fake deer that they would sick the tenderfoot on. you would run up there thinking that you had just killed your first big buck and all those old men would just bust out laughing so hard they'ed soon be rolling on the ground. guns are tradtion and good times. i've got a ton of old pictures of my ancestors draining the blood out of a buck they just killed. that was the number one answer. sitting on a horse was number two.
just posing in their sundays was number three. i sort of think that we are going to run out of deer before we run out of guns.
what are we going to do to prove that we are men if we run out of animals to kill? no worrys, video games, and that wee game from scotland. soon you'll be hunting hologram deer. i can't help you with the gun problem or the deer problem, but i have learned how to raise fish. i've had ponds for almost 30 years. some people even call me the pondtender.

Anonymous said...

I wish I could put my thoughts in print as well as the folks who post here but I will take a shot at it. Pun intended.
I've only wore out two guns in my life, one was Ernie's 22 and the second was a 243 that Ernie's dad bought for me when I was 11 years old. I would sometimes shoot a hundred rounds through the 243 in a day. I still have the 243 but it sits in a safe at my brothers place.
I have mixed feelings about gun control because when I was growing guns were a part of life. Most everybody I knew hunted. Now days the demographics have changed in the world I grew up in. There has been a big population increase in Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity counties and it seems like they are, were from cities. These people have grown up in a different enviroment than the country folks. It also seems some of the people I knew as kids have their life view changed by the "new comers". Hollywood has glorified a mind set also in the way people see guns. Like shooting people with pistol grip shotguns and semi-auto rifles. So now, even as a life member in the NRA I think some guns are stupid and so is the mind set behind these type of guns. I had a CCW permit when I lived in Calif. But it was to comply with the law, not for protection. Now days I think it is a good idea to have THE permit there so I would stand behind anybody that qualifies for a CCW.


Fred said...

Speaking of guns (and candidates for office)I was looking around yesterday trying to dig up some specific dirt on Wes Chesbro. Unfortunately, Gun Owners of California hasn't updated their candidate ratings to include 2008.

Still, they have candidate ratings for 2006. Naturally, our two representatives in Sacramento get F ratings, as did Chesbro when he was in office.

Scroll down and they have links to pdf files of legislative scorecards for years gone by. Chesbro is included in some of those:

Ernie Branscomb said...

Anon 1:11, You gave a very good description of your opinion of guns, and your feeling about the constitution. I find little to argue with.
Your statement; “They can pry the Bill of Rights from my cold dead hands.”
As you might guess, I have heard variations of that phrase, and I don’t like it. I always kinda’ hoped that when it came to someone trying to take my rights, or my gun, that the closing scene would be with the person that was doing the taking, still very much alive, being knocked flat on their back, squealing “Uncle”, with my foot on their throat. They get to live another day to spread the message, that peoples rights shouldn’t be messed with. After all, I’m not a violent person!

The fact that you said that you are afraid of guns is the one answer that intrigues me the most. Are you afraid of guns because you don’t know how to handle them safely? Or, are you afraid of the PEOPLE that have them? Like I said, “there is a visceral fear of guns in the people live here now,” and I don’t understand where it came from. Can you tell me why you fear guns?

Spyrock, very interesting, you kind of fit in with the pioneer way of thinking. But, I should tell you that those hologram deer just don’t stick to your ribs!

Well said Oregon, you pretty much nailed it! You should start a blog about some of your hunting and fishing.

Well we have one “don’t like guns”, two that “don’t fear guns” and one that has the problem all figured out, he doesn’t trust politicians.

Anonymous said...

I think I will pass on the hunting and fishing stories. One of us getting attacked here is enough.
For example shooting 5 bucks in one day, a few times at that and catching 24 salmon and 4 halibut and being back at the dock before 10 AM. The fish story was in Alaska and legal.
Then shooting deer to feed my bear dogs when I lived in Zenia and trying to live on $63 a week.


suzy blah blah said...

you are sooo right// guns and alchohal dont mix. Billys little brothre Ahab 18yrs old was staying with us and he went out half drunk under the moon at 2am a cuople weeks ago and shot two rabbits. me adn Billy woke up thinking wtf? They were both head shots from a good little distance cuz hes reallyreally good shot even when half in the bag ... but Billy jumped outa bed rubbing the sleep from his eyes and took the 22 away from Ahab and said never use a gun when yr drinking ... he didnt put his foot on Ahabs throuat and make him say uncle tho (or even make him say big brother) LOL but maybe next time he should cuz than the stupid kid passed out and was hungover the next day -- i told him you shoot a rabbit you gotta eat it! thats our rule ... but the kid groaned and moaned holding his fuching head and ... and everything but so guess who ended up cleaning the critters while the Ahab went back to bed? !!!

but wow they were reeally really good ... after we cleaned them Suzy barbeQued them smothered in mint leaves. we peeled off the black mintleaves and underneeth == ---mmm yummy...

so like i was saying... Suzy grew up a hippy kid with no guns around. My parents were passafists so at least they never passed a fist at Suzy LOL and that im happy for but yuo know.,. so no guns were aruond when i was a little Suzy but Billys fomily is more like youres Ernie --they know all about guns and Billy taought me how to hit a target really really far away he says Suzys gotta good eye lol, and so i am not afraid of guns so much anymore like i used to be cuz they were strange to me but billy taught me that they are tools and how to handle them... thats called education says aunt Katie. LOtsa peeps are educated she says and some of em are even "formally" educated.

gotta go check 4 mold,

Eric V. Kirk said...

I have some thoughts Ernie, but I'll have to post them later. Some gun laws are good, others aren't.

I do believe the ACLU is not only inconsistent but imprudent for failing to take a stand on the integrity of the Second Amendment. You weaken one part of the Bill of Rights, you weaken it all. I think I posted something about this months back.

Fred said...

Ernie wrote, "...there is a visceral fear of guns...".

Sometimes those fears can take on hysterical proportions.

Back in the early 80s I was moving out to Cutten from Myrtletown. Among the guns I owned was a snub- nose 38/357 (Ruger Speed Six). While going back and forth between the new rental and old rental I stuck it in my waistband and stuffed a bunch of 38 special cartridges in my pocket.

I stopped at the Cutten Supermarket on my way out to my new place to buy a few things. I reach into my pocket to get some change at the check out and dumped some change and a few 38 rounds on the counter. She didn't know I had the pistol with me.

The gal freaked. She acted like I shoved a gun in her face. I told her the rounds weren't going to explode or anything but she just stayed freaked out. She seemed to think those cartridges were gonna fly off the counter and kill her.

Couldn't understand it. We used to be friendly but, after that, she didn't want much to do with me.

Oh, there also used to be one of the cashier gals at Murphy's in Cutten- within sight of Cutten Super Market- who had the additional duty of filling up the magazine racks. She refused to put any magazines on the rack that had anything to do with guns or hunting.

She made no bones about it. I asked her about it and she said something along the line of guns being awful and nobody should be allowed to own them.

Anonymous said...

1:11 here again.....

Explain my fear of guns, I'll try.

Part of it definitely has to do with my own personal lack of knowledge and training, but mostly it has to do with experience. I didn't grow up around guns. I never knew hunters and people who kill their own food until I moved here. The majority of my encounters with guns have been very dangerous and frightening.

Drunks at parties firing blindly into the woods. Men pointing guns at my head while they demand money. Men pointing guns at my head while they demand to see my passport or ID.

I have never been around people who treat guns with the respect and caution that you seem to. Every time I have been around a gun in someone's hand, I was one quick slip or twitch away from a painful death.

I don't think guns are bad by themselves. I think they are dangerous in the hands of stupid people, and there seems to be a whole lot of stupid people in the world.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:11- fear of guns.
I used to think we always had a certain percentage of stupid people in this country, even a hundred years ago. My thoughts were we just have more people living now so more stupid people. Now days I think the percentage has gone up.


Ernie Branscomb said...

Anon 1:11,

To be involved in a situation like what you described would indeed be frightening. You have my complete understanding and sympathy. However, this is Humboldt County, and all of the things that you described would be against the law if they happened here. Most of them would be felonies if prosecuted.

I understand your reluctance to not press charges, but those kinds of actions are the very thing that give guns a bad name. Please bear in mind that is was the PEOPLE with guns that terrified you, and not the gun.

Now, just imagine if you saw a group of those kind of people walking up your driveway. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to say “you are on my property, and you should leave now. I am armed and I will shoot you if you threaten me in any way.“ Even a policeman does not have the right to draw down on you and demand your compliance without probable cause. Especially not on your own property. Part of the problem is that there are people that live in our area that provide the police with probable cause to draw down on them, and the police forget to stop drawing their weapons when there is no probable cause. Again, a person problem, not a gun problem.

There are lots of gun laws already on the books that cover every possible terrifying situation. Those laws should be enforced first, because if they take the guns away from law abiding citizens, imagine the terror that you would suffer when someone breaks down your door because they know that you are a law abiding citizen, and you wouldn’t have a gun. Have you ever noticed from the police reports that cops houses are almost never robbed or broken into?

Ernie Branscomb said...

Gun Ownership - It's The
Law In Kennesaw
By Jonathan Hamilton and David Burch
Marietta Daily Journal Staff Writers

KENNESAW, Ga - Several Kennesaw officials attribute a drop in crime in the city over the past two decades to a law that requires residents to have a gun in the house.

In 1982, the Kennesaw City Council unanimously passed a law requiring heads of households to own at least one firearm with ammunition.

The ordinance states the gun law is needed to "protect the safety, security and general welfare of the city and its inhabitants."

Then-councilman J.O. Stephenson said after the ordinance was passed, everyone "went crazy."

"People all over the country said there would be shootings in the street and violence in homes," he said. "Of course, that wasn't the case."

In fact, according to Stephenson, it caused the crime rate in the city to plunge.

Kennesaw Historical Society president Robert Jones said following the law's passage, the crime rate dropped 89 percent in the city, compared to the modest 10 percent drop statewide.

"It did drop after it was passed," he said. "After it initially dropped, it has stayed at the same low level for the past 16 years."

Mayor Leonard Church was not in office when the law was passed, but he said he is a staunch supporter of it.

"You can't argue with the fact that Kennesaw has the lowest crime rate of any city our size in the country," said Church, who owns a denture-making company in Kennesaw.

The author of the ordinance, local attorney Fred Bentley Sr., attributes at least some of the decrease in crime to the bill.

"I am definitely in favor of what we did," he said. "It may not be totally responsible for the decrease, [but] it is a part."

Although he is pleased with the outcome, Bentley said he was originally opposed to drafting the law.

"I didn't think it could be written in a constitutional fashion," he said. "Obviously, it was constitutional, because the American Civil Liberties Union challenged it in court and we won."

Jones said the ACLU challenged the law in a federal court just after it was passed. In response, the city added a clause adding conscientious objectors to the list of those exempt.

Although the law is now being credited with a drop in crime, Jones said that was not the law's original purpose. He also pointed out that Kennesaw did not have a big problem with crime before.

"The crime rate wasn't that high to start with. It was 11 burglaries per 1,000 residents in 1981," he said.

According to the Kennesaw Police Department, the city's most recent crime statistics show 243 property crimes per 100,000 residents in 1998, or .243 per 1,000.

The city's crime rate continues to be far below other metro Atlanta city's with similar populations, like Decatur. In 1998, Decatur recorded 4,049 property crimes per 100,000 residents.

Jones said one motivation for the council passing the ordinance had to do with publicity.

"It was done in response to a law passed by Morton Grove, Ill., outlawing gun ownership within the city limits," he said. "Several council members were upset Morton Grove had gotten a lot of attention with their ordinance so they decided to top them.

"They figured the gun ownership ordinance would knock that city right off the front pages. They were right."

Jones said the ensuing publicity surrounding the law has given Kennesaw worldwide name recognition.

"I have been to Australia and Europe and when I tell people I am from Kennesaw they recognize the name as the place that requires everyone to own a gun," he said.

But Stephenson said the issue was not publicity-driven but issue-driven.

"We believed in the right of people to own guns," he said.

Jones said he has sold 550 copies of a 1994 book about the first-of-its-kind law, "The Law Heard 'Round the World."

He said the law in its final form has many loopholes, so not everyone is required to own a gun.

"There are many outs," he said. "When you look at it, almost anyone could fit into one of the exempted groups."

Kennesaw Police Chief Dwaine Wilson said no one has ever been prosecuted under the ordinance.

Among those exempt are residents "who conscientiously oppose maintaining firearms as a result of beliefs or religious doctrine." Others exempt include the physically and mentally disabled, paupers and those convicted of a felony.

The law contains no clause addressing punishment for violating the law. If convicted, City Clerk Diane Coker said punishment would be determined by the general penalty clause of the Kennesaw Code Ordinance - probably a fine of about $100.

Jones said the unusual law has not deterred anyone from moving to Kennesaw.

"Our population has increased just like everyone's in Georgia in the past 20 years," he said. "The law really hasn't done any harm to the city's growth."

The city's population in 1998 was recorded at 14,493 - a sharp increase over the 8,936 residents recorded in the 1990 census.

Cobb Chamber of Commerce president Bill Cooper said odd laws are typically not counted as strike against a city when a business is looking to relocate.

"These laws don't have laws don't have an impact on a company's decision to move to Cobb County," Cooper said.

"Many communities have strange laws that are out of date. Businesses look at many factors when relocating, such as quality of life, education, infrastructure and available workforce."

Bentley said the law actually may have helped business development.

"Kennesaw is home to more manufacturing businesses than any other Cobb city," he said. "Companies have said they want to be located in conservative areas."

And Kennesaw isn't the only city in Cobb with an unusual law on the books.

According to Jeff Koon, who runs a Web site specializing in funny laws,, Acworth has a ordinance requiring residents to own a rake.

In Marietta, it is illegal to spit from a car or a bus, but perfectly legal to spit from a truck.

Anonymous said...

I like my guns alot, and would not like to think of what might happen if they became outlawed. Some people who own guns scare me, but the guns and bullets do not. Most scary of all are the holes that they make.

Ernie Branscomb said...

“Most scary of all are the holes that they make.”
…..And the places that they make them. I have often wondered why they don’t set up camera traps for people that frequently shoot at road signs. It could be moved from time to time and a person would think that they could create a lot of revenues from fines. The cars license would be in the photo, so would the shooter. Just like shooting fish in a barrel. But no, they use the camera traps to catch people blowing stop signs.

The big plus would be that they could take the guns away from the people that don’t deserve them!

Eric V. Kirk said...

In 1982, the Kennesaw City Council unanimously passed a law requiring heads of households to own at least one firearm with ammunition.

I'd go to jail to fight that one. If I owned a gun, I'd deliberately sell it just to break the law and challenge it in court.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Eric, they freely admit that the law was writen as a publicity stunt and it is not enforcable as it is writen.

He said the law in its final form has many loopholes, so not everyone is required to own a gun.

"There are many outs," he said. "When you look at it, almost anyone could fit into one of the exempted groups."

Kennesaw Police Chief Dwaine Wilson said no one has ever been prosecuted under the ordinance.

spyrock said...

when my dad was 8 years old, he went around town collecting money to buy a fire truck. my grandpa was the volunteer fireman of the family at the time as were many businessmen in the town. but my dad dates himself to being a fireman back to when he was 8. they still have that old pumper and they used to let him ride in the parades on it until he died.
we used to have a father son picnic every year and shooting skeet was one of the main attractions. there were fishing and horseshoe contests as well and every winner got a bottle of jack.
of course, they would be drinking beer as soon as they got there, so by the time they started shooting, things sometimes got pretty wild. they would invite the local dignataries like the mayor and the county supervisor and the fire department was well funded back in those days. my dad and i finally won the horseshoe contest when he was nearing 90, but we never won the skeet contest. a firemans son got so mad at me for beating him pitching in little league that he became a world champion skeet shooter. and those fireman would practice ahead of time. one time the cheif almost got his head blowd off by one of the rookie fireman but other than driving off the road and into a ditch on the way home, we all got away with a whole lotta fun. you've got your anonymous people here, where i'm from they've got ducks anonymous that both the men and the girls in my family have supportted over the years. little richie is probably the best shot, but little mel is pretty good too. some of the youngins ain't too bad neither.
and by the way ernie, those hologram deer are shoot and release.

Snickerdoodles said...

Sorry for the length of this comment, but you touched a nerve.

Guns don't scare me. But crackers from Cobb County do; I lived in Georgia for a time coming up.

You posted a feel-good story about Cobb county, I felt the need to elucidate your readers a little more about all the gun owners of Cobb County. So, here's a little more info about some of their infamous residents (and their open-minded ways):

"Curious George" Obama Shirt Causes Uproar

(AP) The publisher of the popular children book's series "Curious George" is considering legal action against a Georgia bar owner for selling T-shirts that link Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama to the inquisitive monkey.

Boston-based Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is upset with Mike Norman, owner of a Marietta, Ga., bar, for selling the shirts which show Curious George peeling a banana with "Obama in '08" printed beneath the image.

"Houghton Mifflin Harcourt did not nor would we ever authorize or approve this use of the Curious George character, which we find offensive and utterly out of keeping with the values Curious George represents," said Richard Blake, the company's spokesman. "We are monitoring the situation and weighing all of our options."

Norman, who began selling the shirts in late April, has said they are not meant to be racist. He said he thinks the Illinois senator and the character "look so much alike."

Bill Nigut, southeast regional director for the Anti-Defamation League, said Norman is being disingenuous.

"He can pretend he doesn't understand what the message of that T-shirt is, but he knows full well that's an offensive and demeaning stereotype used to insult African-Americans," Nigut said. He called on citizens not to buy the T-shirts, but stopped short of calling for a boycott of Norman's business or denying him to speak out.

"His speech is protected, but that doesn't mean that it's appropriate and that doesn't mean it's not hateful," Nigut said.

On Tuesday, about a dozen people gathered outside the bar to object to the T-shirt. The protesters said the shirts are racist and they wanted Norman, to stop selling them.

Nigut said he was not surprised to hear that some in the community might have bought the shirt.

"To say that there are a few people in the community who are eager to have that ... I wouldn't deny that," Nigut said, adding that some could've purchased a shirt as a souvenir of the controversy.


The Shadow of Hatred

Hate Group Activity in Cobb County, Georgia


Cobb County, Georgia has a history of organized hate group
activity which dates back to the Reconstruction Era Ku Klux Klan
following the Civil War. The lynching of Leo Frank in Cobb County in
1915 was a major factor in the twentieth century rebirth of the Ku
Klux Klan, which had been dormant since the 1870s.

For many years, Cobb County has been the center of hate group
activity in the Metropolitan Atlanta area. A major factor has been
the activity of J. B. Stoner, Ed Fields, and their associates.

From 1980 to 1984, Marietta was headquarters for Ed Fields'
New Order Knights of the KKK, which maintained klaverns in Marietta
and Kennesaw. In the early 1980s, the Invisible Empire Knights of the
Ku Klux Klan had at least two of its twenty-five Georgia klaverns in
Cobb County. The Cobb klaverns were in Marietta and Kennesaw. These
were the only towns in Georgia known to support klaverns of two
different klan factions.

During the past five years, most of the nazi skinhead
organizations in the Atlanta area have been based in Cobb County,
including the National Socialist Youth of Georgia, Georgia National
Socialist Alliance, SS of America, Aryan Resistance League,
Hammerskins, Aryan National Front, Atlanta area Confederate
Hammerskins, and White Women's Association. The Georgia organizer for
the Tennessee-based Christian Guard also resides in Cobb.

Holocaust Revisionism (a pseudo scholarly movement that denies
the reality of the nazi extermination of European Jews) in the Atlanta
area is headquartered in Cobb County. Marietta attorney Sam Dickson's
Atlanta Committee for Historical Review sponsors visits by European
Holocaust Revisionists and hate group members.

The Populist Party of Georgia maintained its headquarters in
Smyrna, Cobb County, until April of 1992. Its then Executive
Director, C. Ray Harrelson, is a frequent attendee of klan
gatherings, and has made anti-Semitic public statements.

Cobb County has also witnessed violence and harassment by
those who call themselves "pro-life." In September 1984, the Cobb
County Planned Parenthood Office was set on fire.

Currently, the Neighbors Network is receiving numerous
complaints of incidents involving nazi skinheads, including a
lesbian-bashing in the Merchants Walk-Merchants Exchange area of Cobb County.

That said. I came of age in the South and my father was military.

Guns were all I thought about until age 13, when i discovered girls and beer.

By age 7 I could field strip and clean my Dad's M1911A1 and could get about halfway through an M16 -- until the part where you had to spring the bolt for the firing pin (I didn't have the hand strength).

Dad was on the Marine pistol team and almost made the cut for the Olympics ... I qualified as an expert marksman at age 8.

And there's nothing like letting go of a clip on full auto.

Needless to say gun safety was taught as paramount.

When I got older, I did a lot of fishing and hunting, but though I was a crack shot, I never killed anything bigger than a rabbit. Just didn't have the heart for killing, or I just wasn't hungry enough.

I've accidentally discharged a rifle -- a case of picking up a friend's hair-trigger .22 Marlin off a rack a little too forcefully -- he was crazy enough to keep it loaded with the safety off. Gun safety in his family had a different definition than mine.

I've also lost several loved ones to hand guns. Two suicides and one really stupid situation where teenagers were playing with a pistol they found in the house -- pretending to shoot one another -- they killed a dear friend of mine at age 13.

I've lost more friend's to drunk driving than guns. That's illegal, and sometimes I think hand guns should be too. Their only purpose is to kill people.

D.C.'s handgun law was good legislation. D.C. had fallen from it's perch as the murder capital of the U.S. in the 80's-90's to a somewhat lower level (still horrendous) ... a lot of that had to do with the liberal gun laws of neighboring Virginia, where you can buy several handguns a day.

The Supreme Court made a fool's bargain with the NRA on their 2nd amendment ruling, we will all reap the rewards.

Please, buy trigger locks and use them.

I still own a rifle. I keep it disassembled, with the firing pin removed.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Snickerdoodle, Actually your post is not to long, and it resonates with some of the things that I feel strongly about. Some of the hate that you talk about, happened in the past, and hopefully things are getting better.

I agree with Bill Nigut;
"His speech is protected, but that doesn't mean that it's appropriate and that doesn't mean it's not hateful,"

The depiction of Obama as Curious George is not only overtly racist, it is also something that I see too much of lately, hate against an opposing party. A republican against a Democrat, or vise-versa. Politics is getting destructive. If you watch the campaign on television you will see that most of the adds are criticizing the opponent rather than telling us what they will do for us. Those kind of adds really turn me off to politics. It makes me cringe to hear the things that they will say about each other, and it makes me realize that the respect for each other and basic human decency is almost gone. So, as some things get better, other things get worse.

Anonymous said...

guns dont kill people.
people kill people.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Good point, in countries that don't allow guns, people are murdered with knives.

I was hoping that someone might have some comments on the North Coast Journal article

Anonymous said...

I have often wondered why they don’t set up camera traps for people that frequently shoot at road signs.

Great Idea, new targets for the next time I get drunk and go out to get me a sign, and now a camera to match, kinda like getting the ever elusive five point buck.

Anonymous said...

Here is my take. I grew up around rifles. Hunting rifles. My father owned several, my brothers owned several and everyone knew how to use them safely. Hunter safety courses from age 12. Everyone, except me.

We started off with BB guns at around age 10 or 11. It was our first foray into being a hunter. We were never allowed to needlessly kill animals, such as birds or lizards and what not. When we became young teenagers, we went on our first buck hunts. Everyone, except me.

You see, I never had a hankering for guns. Never saw the need. You see, while I appreciate the need for firearms for gathering food, my father spoke with me when I was around 15 years old. We agreed that my lifestyle wouldn't revolve around a rural setting. So, I wouldn't have much need for a rifle. As the era's changed, less and less food raising and gathering was needed for someone like me. Everything I needed could be obtained by holding a good paying job and the availability of meat at grocery stores. I followed that path. Killing for food doesn't bother me in the least. As I said, I grew up with it and many years, it was very necessary. Especially when the lumber mills curtailed and food was scarce.

Handguns, while I respect the owners right to own them, I do not trust their usage. A rifle would do the trick in most instances of protecting your home and family from bad guys.

I've never shot a gun larger than a pellet gun. Never felt the need to. And, I still gather my meat from the grocery store. But, I will honor everyone's right to keep and bear arms.

For protection from bad guys, I just keep myself very aware of my surroundings and keep a clawhammer in my night stand.

If I felt the need to arm myself from foreign invasion, I don't have to worry, my brothers own enough guns to arm a small platoon.

I'm not too keen on people owning machine guns and mini Howitzer's...but, it is a free country.

And yes, I do believe if guns were outlawed, only outlaws would have guns.

Anonymous said...

My family/gun story is similar to yours, Ernie. If I wasn't all wrung out from watching the Biden/Palin debate, I'd give you a long dissertation in support of the right to keep and bear arms.

Instead, I'll be uncharacteristically brief.

First Point: Biden hates the NRA and the Second Amendment with all his heart. He is a danger to our Consitutional right to keep and bear arms. He has personally screamed at representatives of the NRA from his seat in the Senate. I saw him do it while I watched on C-SPAN. He went into a genuine melt-down of rage against us.

Second Point: His running mate, would-be President Barack Obama, advocates a nationwide ban on all concealed carry permits. That would take power out of the hands of forty states that now do allow concealed weapon permits.

Between Joe Biden, and Barack Obama, anyone who cares about our Second Amendment rights would have to be insane to vote for the Democrats this year. (I don't mean just crazy. I mean totally insane.)

spyrock said...

i went to homecoming at one of the local highschools. the king was vietnamese and the queen was chinese. man how things have changed.
my cousin sharon married a mexican back in 1962 so we are sort of used to this racial issue. the difference is that their kids are biracial. in actuality, most white europeans are multinational rather than "white" so then you have the other colors, black, brown, yellow, and red which are made up of multinational elements as well. so biracial occurs when two of these basic colors mix and children are created. my step son and step daughter both have biracial half white, half brown children just like my cousin sharons three kids. my cousin vickie married a man from japan and has two half white, half yellow kids, my cousin kathy has a half white, half black grandson. the main thing that you notice when you have biracial kids is that they get hammered from both sides. barack obama was raised by his white mother and her parents and barely knew his black african father but because he looks black, he gets hammered by whites, but because he acts white because that's how he was raised, he gets hammered by blacks as well. my grandkids are treated the same way, they get hammered by both sides.
i don't know how many half white, half red cousins i have living in covelo but i know the indian word for them, its called "metis."
for a long time you heard about the red road and how only pure bloods could talk about the way indians saw spirit. only pure blood hawaiians can surf the waves.
only black people have soul or can dance, etc. etc. etc. that's how people identify themselves. they look into the mirrow. they see a color. others see a color. so its natural to identify with that. but with all the biracial people being created out there, people are finally begining to look passed the color to the human being underneath.
where i work is 95% mexican or brown. i feel very little resistance to brown or mexican people because i'm so used to them. but because i'm white and i look like a hells angel, i'll feel some young brown guy bounce off my skin color once in awhile. but right away, i know its because he's a racist and its nothing i did except be myself. so i see racists of all colors out there all the time. but because i don't identify with being "white" and i don't resist their particular color, i usually have good encounters with all colors of people all the time whether they are racists or not. being a racist is not their fault. it's how they were raised going back ages. it's part of their subconscious and it's on automatic like riding a bike. its just a natural part of evolution that is becoming more culturally and racially diverse all the time.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Ekovox just kills them softly with his song.

Spyrock, It's a good thing that you are not a racist, you would have a lot of trouble deciding who to hate.

The world isn't to far from race nutrality through inter-marriages.

ben said...

You know Ernie, I never noticed that there were names on that NCJ cover. I just thought it was an unusually bad piece of cover art. My wife says I never notice anything. I live on a road frequented by vagabonds some of them quite crazy. I'v been here thirty years and never been bothered. My theory is that Humboldt's reputation as a haven for gun lovers helps me by making wackos very reluctant to walk up some unknown driveway. I'm grateful to all that freshly oiled blue steel. I don't own a gun. Don't need one.

Kym said...

I grew up in a house with guns. I learned the main gun rule is "Its always loaded even if you just unloaded it."

We have guns at our house. My older sons grew up with guns and my younger one will when he is old enough. Guns are a tool--like a chain saw--dangerous as hell but, if treated respectfully, extremely useful.

Anonymous said...

My take on the NCJ artical is they are irresponsible. I'm sure it sells papers and that is what they do for a living. However, I bet if they printed an artical with the names of people who have aids in Humboldt you would see a bigger outcry. Maybe that is not a good example as it might not be public reord but you get the idea.

I agree with anon 9:10 about the insanity. The two big things in politics I have strong feelings about are taxes and gun control. Why don't we hear about what the Dems want to do with our gun rights?

One other thing that sticks in my craw is the teachers in our colleges and universities. They are extreme left wing and neuter a lot of impressionable young adults.


Ernie Branscomb said...

From Kym “Guns are a tool--like a chain saw--dangerous as hell but, if treated respectfully, extremely useful“

Oh, Thanks Kym! Now they are going to want to register, regulate, or ban chainsaws! You will have to sign for any spare chains that you buy so the ATFCS. (Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Chain Saw) Can track you.

Narrator: “The events of that day were to lead to one of the most bizarre crimes in the annals of American history - the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”

spyrock said...

i thought y'all would like this little ditty.

The story goes like this:
After suturing a cut on a 75 year old Texasrancher, whose hand had been caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the rancher. Eventually the topic got around to candidates - specifically Sarah Palin
The old rancher said, 'well, ya know, Sarah is a post turtle'. Notbeing familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a 'post turtle' was. The old rancher said when you're driving down a country road, and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle. The old rancher noticed a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain.
'You know she didn't get up there by herself, she doesn't belong up
there, and she doesn't know what to do while she is up there, and you have to just wonder what kind of idiot put her up there in the first place.'

Anonymous said...

Well spyrock, that turtle will get set down or fall off that post and move on. To me that post represents Obama. Not going anywhere, just sit in the same hole. Politics as usual.


Ernie Branscomb said...

What I think will happen, is Wall Street will come along and set the post on fire and eat the tutle for dinner.

Indie said...

I'm having a hard time believing this proud statement against education is not a parody of itself: "One other thing that sticks in my craw is the teachers in our colleges and universities. They are extreme left wing and neuter a lot of impressionable young adults." --Anon 7:19

Indie said...

Here is the link to an inspired posting about guns, written by a favorite blogger of mine, Belle Ware. Like me, she grew up in a gun-loving household, but didn't turn out to be a gun-toting person herself. It's complicated, being a pacifist and a redneck at the same time. Belle says it better than I can in Mr. Saturday Night Special: Got a Barrel That's Blue and Cold.

Anonymous said...

I have a few things to repeat:

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those that do not" Thomas Jeferson

The Second Amendment is in place
in case the politicians ignore the others.

Those who trade liberty for security have neither.
~John Adams

You only have the rights you are willing to fight for.

The United States Constitution (c) 1791. All Rights Reserved.

Guns have only two enemies;
rust and politicians.

Anonymous said...

As you can see the Goverment would have to do a lot of work to get rid of the II Amendment. The Goverment can pass any law it likes. It will stand till it is challenged before the Supreme Court. At which time it will stand or fall. To add an amendment it can not be contrary to another. The other first must be repealed. As in prohibition. The strongest Amendment is the XIV it supports all the rest. Please learn the U.S. Constitution not just the First and Second. No one part of the Constitution is more inportant than the other. They work together. The more you know the farter you go and the more intelligent of argument you can make.

Article. VI.

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.


Section 1.
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

yours Truly
P.S. I miss spelled Thomas Jefferson in my last post