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Bring Your Drill: Gun Owners Hold March for Irresponsible Tool Use in Sioux Falls Today

An eager reader turned our discussion of the relative safety of rural and urban areas to the South Dakota Open Carry march taking place in Sioux Falls this evening. At 5:15 p.m., a group of armed individuals will assemble at Twin Oaks Place on South Minnesota Avenue, march a couple miles up the street to Starbucks (whose manager says gun-toters are as welcome as hipsters to pay too much for coffee), then mosey back, all with pistols on their hips or rifles over their shoulders.

SD Open Carry vice-president Jesse Rierson says the point of this armed stroll is to educate the public as to their right to openly carry firearms in public. "If you don't do it, people are never going to get used to it," he tells KELO. "People are never going to learn their rights."

Pastor Kristi McLaughlin of the Anew United Church of Christ was organizing a counter-protest to show that she'd rather people didn't get used to guns. :

“It’s more of a response to the idea of being comfortable with weapons in public,” she said. “I would like for us to have an alternative image of the society we live in.”

...McLaughlin said she doesn’t want to attack the Second Amendment, the right to keep and bear arms, but questions whether society should be comfortable with people carrying guns in the streets.

“I don’t want my grandchild to live in a world where guns on the street are an everyday thing,” she said [Chris Mueller, "Mitchell Pastor Plans Alternative to Sioux Falls Gun Rally," Mitchell Daily Republic, 2013.07.26].

McLaughlin was organizing a counter-protest; after catching some online flak, she decided to cancel her event, saying making her point was "not worth someone getting hurt."

To his credit, SDOC's Rierson says he hopes no one from his group made Pastor McLaughlin feel so threatened and expresses support for the exercise of First Amendment rights alongside Second Amendment rights.

I'm disappointed with Pastor McLaughlin's decision to back off. As a UCC pastor who supports GLBT equality—heck, as a minister of a faith based on the teachings guy who got nailed to cross—McLaughlin should have a thicker skin. She should know that folks talking smack online are mostly blowhards who won't stand up to a face-to-face confrontation.

Yet McLaughlin is correct that attending the Open Carry promenade would increase her risk of getting hurt this evening.

Let's be clear: I do not think any member of South Dakota Open Carry plans to shoot anyone tonight. They are fantasizing about it, hoping they might get the chance to play Lone Ranger on some hapless Saturday night bank robbers. But I am confident that I could walk up to their troop tonight; follow them all the way up and down Minnesota Avenue asking reported attendees Ken Santema, Senator Ernie Otten and Rep. Manny Steele pointed blog questions about the Constitution, the utility of guns in modern society, and their insecure manhood; and not provoke one of those gun-toters to draw, let alone fire.

Consider, though, a counter-rally. I enjoy screwing. I screw regularly, in the house, out in the yard, over helping at the neighbors, even sometimes at school. I have a right to screw in public—responsibly and safely, of course.

To that end, I like walking around town with my electric drill. I walk down the street with my drill, and people say, "Hey! There's a guy who can screw."

But I don't walk around with my drill, not unless there are IKEA curtain rods or a new overhang on Dad's garage or rehearsal cubes to be screwed. Sure, I handle my drill carefully all the time, but I could drop it. If the drill is loaded with a fresh battery, it could hurt somebody. To walk around with a drill just for show strikes me as irresponsible tool use.

We can say the same of tonight's gun show. Yes, we have a right to carry a gun. We can parade up and down Main Street to demonstrate that right. But making a show of our guns increases the risk to those around us with no concrete benefit to those around us.

Related: David Newquist puts the utility of guns in solving real problems in perspective in his take on the gun owners parade.


  1. Barry Smith 2013.07.27

    "If you don't do it, people are never going to get used to it,"
    People aren't farm animals or dogs, if they find something uncomfortable they don't have to get used to it. People have the power to change things and they will use their voting power to change things back to where they are comfortable again. These guys are their own worst enemy. When I took a hunter safety course as a boy scout the instructor asked us all to not strap our kills onto the vehicles in plain sight of other motorists. He said not because you should be ashamed but because you take the chance of turning some little girl who sees you from another car into a future anti- hunter and those little girls will grow up and vote away your hunting rights.

  2. Owen Reitzel 2013.07.27

    the same gun lovers cry about freedoms being taken away, yet they take away freedom of speech from Pastor Kristi McLaughlin by threats. Just another example of a bunch of hypocrites.

  3. Douglas Wiken 2013.07.27

    Cory, if you walked down the street with a screw gun, they wouldn't be saying, "That guy can really screw", they would be saying, "That Cory guy is screwy."

    Your post puts more meaning into "gun nuts".

    More seriously, it is interesting that those who yell for freedom of irresponsible, unnecessary gun ownership freedom to maim and murder oppose freedom of speech and right of assembly for those to see gun nuts instead of freedom fighters.

  4. Jerry 2013.07.27

    Ah, the ignorant few. I agree with Barry Smith in that owning guns and hunting are a fine tradition but not to carry your piece like you are in Tombstone. Remember what happened at the OK Corral in that town. Sometime, somewhere, someone will test the mettle of these would be vigilantes. When that happens, you will hear and smell a smell of severe incontinence that comes from a mob that has been confronted. The only thing these thugs fear is the unarmed red and brown folks in their imagination that are coming for their money and their food. They seem to forget that we do have a police force that is well equipped for that emergency.

  5. Roger Elgersma 2013.07.27

    If they live in so much fear that they need to show their gun, then I both feel sorry for them and do not respect their disrespect for others feeling of safety.
    I have also run across a bad correlation between those who were very permiscquous when they were young and those who claim to be good guys now and fear bad guys so they now feel the absolute need to have a gun. Some really know how bad they have been and made their own reason to live in fear. I do not feel sorry for that group.

  6. Joan 2013.07.27

    In regard to somebody intentionally shooting somebody tonight during the march, we all know ACCIDENTS happen. We hear of accidental shootings quite frequently. That being said, the more people running around on a daily basis, the less safe I feel. The people that think they have to carry a gun all the time, in order for them to feel safe, are also the ones that are apt to go off the deep end and all of sudden for no reason come "unglued."

  7. Phil Schreck 2013.07.27

    I think we've learned from recent events that it's not the general public being agraid of people carrying guns. The problem is people carrying guns being afraid of the general public.

  8. Jana 2013.07.27

    Phil brings up an interesting point.

    Wonder what would happen if the media just ignored these people. Kind of like they should ignore the fearful idiots from Westboro Babtist when they protest funerals of fallen war heroes.

    Phil, start a movement to ignore these types of stunts.

    Speaking of, I think they are playing you as a tool.

  9. MC 2013.07.27

    Come mid-October there will hundreds if not thousands of guns being openly carried. They will be carried in wheeled vehicles, they will pass though airports; carried into restaurants and into stores. We do not fear them, or those who carry the firearms. We welcome them with open arms. We know these people are not coming to raid our towns or pillage our farms. Those guns have purpose; not for show, they are to be used to kill a few birds. (hopefully)
    But, this is not what the Second Amendment was about.
    South Dakota is an open carry state. Someone can walk down the street with a firearm in plain view. If they are attacked they have the right to defend themselves with deadly force if warranted. In reality it does not make a community safer or any less safe. It just let the criminals know who has a gun and who might not. This can work for or against the person showcasing his wares.
    But, this is not what the Second Amendment was about.
    Many in South Dakota have hand guns, or assault weapons for home defense. We have the responsibility to defend the lives of ourselves and our family. Law enforcement cannot be omni-present. We have to assume some responsibility for own security. This can include dead bolt locks, bars on the windows and maintaining a firearm ready to use.
    But, this is not what the Second Amendment was about.
    The Second Amendment is about communities being ready to protect themselves. It is about maintaining a militia to face the threat of an invading force. Not a police force. I know some will say “It is the military’s job to protect us.” I hope everyone has been paying attention what happening in the Middle East with the Arab spring. It can’t happen here? With the amount of distrust in the government right now, it can happen. How far away are we from the television show Jericho becoming reality?
    Our Independence Day celebration doesn’t have soldiers marching with missiles or tanks in front of city halls, because our strength has never been solely in the military. We have pet parades, fire trucks, marching bands, community groups, along with picnics and cook outs, then fireworks because our strength has always been in our communities.
    I support this group to walk down the street with their guns. Not because I support their carry arms, because I support their right have their voice heard.

  10. Barry Smith 2013.07.27

    MC needs to turn the TV off and get outside.

  11. Jana 2013.07.27

    MC. Have gun rights gone up or down in South Dakota? Back when the prairie was filled with settlers...did they have a parade to show off their guns?

    This gun porn makes me think of the gay rights parades made up of people you know that are just like everyone else who felt they were under fire...only wrecked by the people in leather and spikes that skew the whole perception and understanding of who the parade represented.

  12. Jana 2013.07.27

    The chatter at morning coffee was who are these idiots that are so insecure...and to stay away from Minnesota Ave.

  13. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.27

    Phil, fine turn of phrase!

    MC, those hunters use their tools for their intended purpose, to kill game animals. I have no problem with that. But are those hunters using those tools responsibly if they parade down Minnesota Avenue with them, or carry them into Starbucks?

  14. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.27

    And yeah, the Second Amendment wasn't about hunting. It was about (as Winston link-alludes) defending the country from foreign invaders at a time when we had no standing army and everyone else was bigger than we. Times change. So does the Constitution.

  15. Jana 2013.07.27

    Oh dear Lord...what's coming up in mid October MC?

    Oh that's right, the celebration of our constitutional rights embodied in slaughtering our state bird!

    Thanks for pointing that out MC...

    Maybe we could have main street parades throughout the state with hunters marching with bands and hoopla carrying loaded shotguns! We'll line the streets with children as spent slugs are strewn like candy to the kids.

    I'm personally surprised that this isn't an annual event.

  16. Jana 2013.07.27

    I wonder how MC would feel if the parade down Minnesota was only made up of dark skinned people marching by his house?

    I bet it would be only the ones with cantaloupes for calves that would concern him....of course, I could be wrong. No self respecting person would judge 2nd amendment rights by color and calf size.

  17. Owen Reitzel 2013.07.27

    Here's what Manny Steel said on KSFY.

    "State Representative Manny Steele was also walking to support South Dakota's gun rights.

    "Because of the conflict of some trying to take our gun rights away from us, we need to be able to make a statement that according to the second amendment; it's our right to do this," said Steele. "

    No, No. No Steele. Nobody is taking away anybody's rights and you have no right to walk down a street and scare the s__t out of me.

  18. Jana 2013.07.27

    Scratch Starbucks from the coffee rotation...

    What would really make a statement is if they all carried openly to church for the Vacation Bible School celebration...that would really show that they the are exercising their rights so they won't be lost. As one of the gay...I mean gun rights marchers proclaimed.


    Plus it would get kids used to seeing guns carried openly and proudly so that the next time someone came to their church or school with a gun, they wouldn't be afraid.


  19. Jana 2013.07.27

    The rights of people to have sex is under fire in Virginia...especially oral sex...better have a parade down Minnesota to protect them.

    Heck, Manny can march too and provide the same quote and only change 2 words.

    "Because of the conflict of some trying to take our sexual rights away from us, we need to be able to make a statement that according to the first amendment; it's our right to do this," said Steele."

    As an added bonus...the visual of Manny talking about sex could deter thousands of unwanted pregnancies.

    Must. Bleach. Visual. From. Mind.

  20. Bill Dithmer 2013.07.28

    Its wheel gun training for your kids twelve and older. That's right now you can arm your kids before they leave for a school day. Just imagine the peace of mind that you will feel knowing your kid might be able to stop a school shooting before it starts.

    This is a full two day comprehensive course covering the following areas of interest.

    We will address the issues that naturally come along in instances like these.
    1. Care and handling of a side arm.
    2. Target identification.
    3. The care and emergency treatment of a gunshot wound.
    4. We will give them a step by step guide to securing a school with the least amount of collateral damage.
    5. One whole hour on the firing range to get a feel for their weapon.
    6. And finally a dandy diploma suitable for framing showing their competency at the time of their graduation from our academy.

    Our two instructors have a combined 100 years experience and have been certified by me"The Blindman" to have at least one of their original teeth.

    Just think in a mater of two days you can have your premenstrually unfriendly, hormone raging teenage daughter handling a side arm like a pro. You dads can be proud of your testosterone pumping he-man son for the way he carries himself on the street without fear of someone with a weapon scaring him.

    This will give school a whole new meaning when the kids take control of their own safety. No more worries.

    Each and every graduate of our academy will receive at no additional cost.
    1. A new Ruger LCR .38 Sp with quick acquisition laser site.
    2. A comfortable underarm holster with a name sticker pasted on the side.
    3.And a brand new box of .38 Sp ammo

    All this for the amazing price of two thousand dollars. that's right just $2,000 is all that separates you from a safer and friendlies school, "and home."

    What are you waiting for?
    Class size is limited to thirty kids.
    Kids must carry their own insurance.
    There will be no refunds after payment is made.
    All payments must be made in full.

    The CHURCH OF BILL is striving to make your community a safer place for everyone. Isn't it time to invest in the future?

    Now can it get any more stupid then that?

    "South Dakota Open Carry march"

    Ya I guess it can.

    The Blindman

  21. John 2013.07.28

    It appeared as if it were the march of the obese from the photos of it.

    Phil nailed it, it's the gun toters fear of the people, and their general fear that has them acting quirky. Meanwhile I'll continue my decades long practice of exercising my right to not quarter soldiers - because if I don't, I might lose it.

  22. Rick 2013.07.28

    My wife and I held a garage sale with another couple a couple years ago. We had our collective stuff set out on the driveway and it was an enjoyable, sunny, cool late summer's day. Later in the day, an SUV rolled up out front, and a man in a tight black t-shirt with a shaved head and black hillbilly beard strolled out with a woman and, I assume, two of their kids. I paid them little attention as I talked with another would-be buyer until I saw his t-shirt had a message about open carry, which made wonder "WTF, to each their own." Then I spotted his holstered semi-automatic pistol on his hip.

    It made me extremely angry that this freak decided to walk into my yard with his gun to make a political point and an implied deadly threat. I felt bullied and perplexed. My wife and I felt violated because this a-hole stranger lacked the common decency to ask if he wore a deadly weapon in my yard -- and the answer would have been a firm NO. Yet, here he was with his gun and he clearly knew how to kill with it. We were unprepared and unarmed. And insulted.

    When he talked with his wife, I noticed some of teeth were missing. So, what to do? Is this some kind of skin-headed Klan-lovin' George Lincoln Rockwell wannabe? A gun nut looking for a kill? A toothless hillbilly wanting to show he's a big man because he has a big gun (and a correspondingly tiny penis)?

    I decided to stay silent and hoped he and his family would leave after a few minutes. Which they did.

    I've got mixed feelings about right to own and right to carry. I think the 2nd Amendment is an outdated protection for back in the days of muzzle loaders, no cell phones, no combustion engine vehicles and no paid standing army. I also know that the 2nd was cultured to protect slave owners, the slave trade and against abolition and the underground railroad. No wonder bigots love their guns as it is a part of their (lack of) cultural heritage. I've got a couple shotguns to hunt pheasants for fun with friends, but 99 percent of my "hunting" is done at the supermarket.

    If I were in Sioux Falls, I would have shown up to picket this event because I find these people repulsive, invasive and violently provocative. There is only one reason you carry a gun like a semi-automatic pistol. You intend for it to be used on another human being. These public "demonstrations" are meant only to hike fear and inspire other pinheads to run out and get a gun because if they don't gun up, they could be shot by another gun nut. Or a black guy in a hoodie carrying a pack of Skittles. Ooooo! Shudder!

  23. Chris S. 2013.07.28

    Yes! Why aren't there any marches to defend the Third Amendment? Our right not to quarter Redcoats is being steadily eroded! I heard so on the electric teevee machine!

  24. bret clanton 2013.07.28

    Jerry, if you are going to bring up the OK Corral get your facts straight. Tombstone had a very strict law against open carry. Of the five people in the Clanton faction only one was armed. William Clanton was armed with a side arm because he just arrived in town to retrieve his brother Issac. Issac had spent the night previous drinking and gambling with his cohort Virgil Earp. The OK Corral is more an example of what can happen when you have an unarmed populace in a police state....

  25. Jerry 2013.07.28

    My historical knowledge is correct. I stated this " Remember what happened at the OK Corral in that town. Sometime, somewhere, someone will test the mettle of these would be vigilantes". You can read into that what you will sir, but the facts are the facts and because of the carrying of guns or a gun in the open, the test was on and the results were what we know historically.

    I could not agree more with you that we are in a police state that we apparently approve of. We showed that in the past elections when we approve of "blue dog Democrats" as well as intellectually challenged "tea party republicans". We do love the protection we get from swat teams and a military like police force. We seem to like the fact that all of our emails and conversations are gleaned like wheat in the fields and we vote that way. We do not challenge the elected officials because that would be too damn hard to do and we are just lazy. I have nothing against guns and probably never will. I have been around them from the time I can remember and still love the outdoors and look forward to the fall and the opportunities of the hunt. I just dislike stupid and cringe at the idea that this type of foolishness does nothing to promote anything but racism at its ugliest.

  26. bret clanton 2013.07.28

    Jerry, they were unarmed at the OK Corral. If you would care to have a discussion about the events that happened Oct. 25, 1881 in Tombstone ok. But please lets use facts and not Hollywoods portrayal of the event. William Clanton had just arrived and had not had time to turn his weapon in.

  27. MC 2013.07.28

    Jana – Did you really just play the race card? Wow! As long as they are American citizens they have the right to keep and bear arms. I don’t care about the color of their skin it could dark, light, green even purple with yellow freckles. They all have the same rights. If the law allows them to open carry, then they can. When it comes to defending your rights to voice your opinion, I will gladly fight alongside them.

    Bill – I fully support firearm safety training at young age. They should be taught to respect firearms, not fear them. No, I don’t suggest they start packing heat to school.

    Rick – I’m sorry you felt bullied by this person. Most people who open carry are very respectful. If you would have asked him to leave, or at least leave the firearm in his vehicle I am sure he would have complied. BTW would you have felt differently if he was carrying a badge with the gun?

    Cory – if a hunter carries his shot gun in to a Starbuck’s, first I would feel sorry for him, as there are much better places to get your caffeine fix. Second, I would be concerned, that the person did not have a place to leave the shotgun securely. Most hunters are very conscious of their firearms, they will not just leaving them where they can be stolen fairly easily. For some reason the hunters in question felt the safest place for their gun is by their side.

  28. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.28

    Guns aren't stopping NSA surveillance. What are we going to do, shoot the private contractors from Booz Hamilton who are sniffing through our e-mails from computer screens a thousand miles away?

    Let's not fuss about the appearance of the gun exhibitionists. We all have our warts.

    With her sex example, Jana does provide another angle on a basic point: we have a right to do many things. That does not mean we should do those things on public streets in front of children just for the heck of it.

    Bill, I welcome your training program, as long as you advertise it under the heading of "The Blindman."

    MC, we can't make any assumptions about the guy who invaded Rick's property with a firearm. We can't assume he was an uneducated hillbilly. We also can't assume he would have complied gently with a request to leave. The simple fact is that the right to property trumps the right to bear arms. If Rick had said, "Get your gun off my property," the man would have had an obligation to comply. Rick's example is complicated, of course: by having a rummage sale, he was inviting the public onto his property. He still had every right to exclude gun carriers, but I wonder: when you open you property to the public for commercial purposes (temporary rummage sale or regular business), what is the default civil assumption: that one must ask permission to bring a gun on the premises, or that the public may bring guns on the premises unless the owner posts otherwise?

    If you're grown-up enough to carry a gun, you need to be grown-up enough to keep it secure. That includes having a locked storage cabinet... or in the case of a hunter needing his Starbucks (o.k., yes, we are delving into the absurd here), a lockable truck or trunk where the gun will be out of sight. What the heck: if the hunter was worried someone might steal the buck he just shot, would we tolerate his walking into a restaurant with the dripping carcass dripped around his neck?

  29. Rick 2013.07.28

    MC and Cory - The thing about the episode at my garage sale is it was on my private property, and while that is an event that invites the public, it doesn't mean I have to let any jerk stick around and bother people. Of course, a jerk flaunting his gun changes the discussion, doesn't it?

    If you've got a gun, you're in a privileged legal class. First, you can flaunt the 2nd Amendment like a parrot and mewl about your rights to do something that, honestly, terrorizes normal people. Second, you can kill me and my wife and our best friends if, for some reason, you had a psychological episode.

    Does having a badge mean anything different? F*&k yes! It means you went to Law Enforcement Training School in Pierre. It means you wear the badge because you are a public employee sworn to uphold the law and protect the peace -- not to provoke violent intrigue. I've known cops throughout South Dakota very well since 1978 and they don't act like skinheaded gun nuts. They've got common sense, which is so lacking today in politics and American society.

    Growing up in the 60s and 70s, nobody in my extended family felt it necessary to carry a side arm. One of my cousins' uncles (not related) enjoyed keeping a Saturday Night Special in his glove box which he'd pull out to thrill us kids when there was a large family gathering. We'd all get a chance to shoot a can and feel the kickback. And after my ears stopped ringing, I thought shooting a pistol was stupid unless you were a soldier at war. I don't care if someone else is inspired by owning one. To each their own as long as they keep their wierd stuff to themselves.

    Now all we hear are the reactionaries belly-aching that nobody's safe unless they're armed to the teeth ... and that ain't nearly safe enough! My word of advice to America is it's time somebody set the reset button from Stupid back to calm-the-heck-down. Goofballs running around with sidearms are trying to prove a point: We're shills for the arms industry, so you better gun up or else. This national argument isn't about personal rights, it's about who's being a dope for the gun lobby.

    Stop being a dope. Stop the gun up paranoia. Guns are not a religion, so stop worshipping and serving them. Save your money. Love your family. Teach your children well. Treat your neighbors as you want to be treated. Those are real American values.

  30. Jana 2013.07.28

    Not a race card MC, just a hypothetical to ponder.

    I do seem to recall when both of the "New Black Panthers" exercised their right by a polling place that didn't seem to bring the defense of open carry to the table. I think there were many on the right that were completely against the right these men were displaying.

  31. MC 2013.07.28

    Cory we don’t know the situation behind a hunter having a shotgun in Starbuck’s. Only that they did. Maybe their vehicle was stolen, and they are walking home, or it damaged in some way to allow easy access to where the shotgun would be kept. Or their wives ‘reprocessed’ their pick up; we could play ‘what if’ all day. Most hunters would gladly give up a deer in lieu of their firearm. It is easy enough to shoot a second deer. Besides if someone stole the deer, they were obviously pretty hungry.

    Rick, you have the law on your side! If you don’t want guns on your property, so be it. Ask him to leave or if you’re that frightened call the police. Don’t give him few minutes to leave; it only takes a second to kill someone. I believe you only trust a person who carries a badge to carry a gun, call someone who carries a gun that you trust, and have him removed.

    You do make a point, Rick, about treating others with respect and civility, and touch of chivalry wouldn’t hurt. At the same time you should not fear guns or fear those who carry guns. I would much rather you respect someone for their words they speak than fear the Iron on their hip or even their outward appearance. One party having a gun shouldn’t change the discussion.

    Cory you may have cracked the door on an interesting issue. If someone is holding a garage sale or rummage sale is inviting the public on to their property, does that make it public accessible? Do they have to follow all the same rules as businesses as far what they have to allow?

  32. Douglas Wiken 2013.07.28

    We need a "protect your private property rights from nuts carrying guns openly." law. Shooting on sight made legal..or at least spray painting them indelible green.

  33. MC 2013.07.28

    Doug, I use a paint ball gun for other people's dogs that are somewhere where they shouldn't be. (in our garden) is that good enough for you.

  34. Eve Fisher 2013.07.28

    Just so you all know, if I ever see someone carrying an assault weapon openly in town, and any kind of weapon near any school, I will call the cops IMMEDIATELY. I would much rather run the risk of offending the carrier than that someone (especially my grandkids!) get killed by a psychopath, sociopath, or just a wingnut who saw a pheasant in the wrong place. You see, I've worked in the judicial system up here, and I know for a fact that South Dakota isn't Mayberry, and that not everyone who has had the right to carry a weapon has used that right well.

  35. nicholas 2013.07.28

    We are the only county in the world that has the rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, including most significantly, the first 6 amendments to the United States Constitution. I suggest everyone should read them again and then ask why were they written in the order they appear and why were they necessary. When I studied American history in public and private schools, I was taught that many States would not ratify the United States Constitution without the Bill of Rights, including with the most important 1st Amendment freedoms of religion and then speech and then press and then to assemble and then to petition the government, and next the 2nd amendment. in the order importance, the right to bear arms. Why is due process of law only the 5th amendment? Why is the right to a jury trial with the right to have compulsory process and the right to an attorney merely the 6th amendment. Why did people distrust the government to make sure the 10th amendment was written. It states: 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.

    It is fairly simple for me to understand the order of the specific rights contained within the bill of rights because the freedom of religion and speech are the first and most important, and should be protected by all of us. How do we protect the 1st amendment? Do you think we protect the 1st amendment with the 2nd amendment? Is that why the 2nd amendment is the amendment immediately after the freedoms of religion and speech? Some of you are reasonably intelligent - think about it.

    I do not have an issue with any of you about the march. I bet the guns were not even loaded - it is not a statement of violence but rather a simple metaphor, which I find less disturbing than being subjected to other forms of free speech, most of it being vulgar and repugnant.

    Anyway, these are my thoughts.

  36. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.29

    Does the order of the Amendments in the Bill or Rights really matter? Is the freedom from quartering of troops in our home really less important than the freedom of religion, or more important than our right to privacy or due process?

    How is waving a gun not an implicit statement of a willingness to do violence? A gun is not a simple metaphor; it is a tool designed to kill. How can one say that a declaration of a willingness to do such violence is less repugnant than free speech? And how can you declare most speech vulgar and repugnant?

  37. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.29

    MC, you're really reaching on the shotgun-Starbucks-deer example. Can you not just admit that it is irresponsible and offensive to bring your hunting paraphernalia into the cafe with you instead of leaving them in the truck?

    And your assertion to Rick that one party holding a gun does not change the nature of a discussion completely contradicts your regular argument that carrying a gun matters and that taking away your right to carry a gun matters. Saturday's marchers paraded with their guns because they fear someone is going to take from them the right to carry those guns that they think give them a power edge in any interaction. Carrying a gun is a projection of force. Carrying a gun says, "I'm scared of something, and I'm willing to use immediate deadly force against what scares me." Call Rick's and my response fear, call it respect, but we can't help but respond to that show of force and experience the dynamic of any interaction with the gun carrier differently than we experience our conversation here on the blog, where no one can immediately draw and shoot if rubbed the wrong way. You can't argue that the right to open carry is important, then tell us that seeing someone open carry shouldn't affect our view of the carrier at all.

  38. MC 2013.07.29

    Am I reaching Cory? Most hunters will leave their firearms locked in their vehicle, or someplace safe. Most hunters know that firearms scare people, they also know that firearms can be used in not so legal ways. They try to keep them locked up and out of sight until they are needed If they walked in with their firearms, there is most likely a good reason for it. You or I don't what that reason is, it would be wrong of us to just start assuming.

    The same applies in Ricks situation. We don't know why he was carrying a firearm. Was he making a political statement? Was there a threat to his family? Maybe he was being stalked by State Representative who repels down the capital rotunda? Was he a member of the police reserve? They don't carry a badge nor where trained in Pierre, however they are part the police force. There is so much we don't know and we shouldn't go around making assumptions.

    Let's say you and I are having a discussion on the street about (pick your topic). Would me or you carrying a sidearm change how would address me? Now let's say, for example, you find out there is a sex crazed collage kid stalking my daughter. Same question, now would that change how would address me?

  39. Rick 2013.07.29

    Cory - I do know why that skinhead was openly carrying his holstered semi-automatic pistol. His tight-fitting, black t-shirt explained he was an open carry activist and that he was proud to carry and show it off. Only a complete dimwit would think he was not making a political statement and an implied threat.

    Was I afraid? No. I was angry and felt violated by a schmuck with a gun. Did I have a healthy concern? Damn straight! Coming up my driveway and walking around in my yard with a gun - uninvited - is provocative. It's invasive. It teaches me nothing other than to detest schmucks who think their worship of guns and the power carrying a deadly weapon has on others. And if I confront an armed skinhead stranger, how stupid is that if he's having a bad psychotic day? My wife and our best friends were right there with me.

    It was real clear to me this jerk intended to provoke us. He could have left his pistol in the car. His t-shirt already told me he was a right to carry activist. I'm more than surprised that any rational person would defend this jerk's actions.

  40. Bill Dithmer 2013.07.29

    "Was he a member of the police reserve? They don't carry a badge nor where trained in Pierre, however they are part the police force."

    Reserve officers must meet the same minimum standards as a certified law enforcement officers, as set forth in chapter 2:01:02.

    A reserve officer appointed by an appointing authority has one year from the date of appointment to obtain certification from the commission as a reserve law enforcement official.

    Q. How may hours do I need to work as a Reserve Officer to maintain my reserve officer certification?

    A. Every certified reserve officer needs to work at least 96 hours during a 12-month period to maintain a level of active duty. No reserve officer can be on duty for more than 30 hours per month unless the local law enforcement agency files a written request to the Law Enforcement Standards and Training Commission explaining a need for more hours.

    The way I'm reading it there is no such thing as an undercover reserve police officer. If he or she is off duty he is just a citizen with a side arm putting on a show.

    "Was he making a political statement? Was there a threat to his family? Maybe he was being stalked by State Representative who repels down the capital rotunda?"

    What would that statement be? If the family was threatened why was he out if the concern was that big? Stay away from the rotunda if you are that worried.

    "Let's say you and I are having a discussion on the street about (pick your topic). Would me or you carrying a sidearm change how would address me?"

    No but I would sure keep my eye on your hands while we were talking, "from experience."

    "Now let's say, for example, you find out there is a sex crazed collage kid stalking my daughter. Same question, now would that change how would address me?"

    Yup I would wonder why you were out human hunting instead of home protecting your daughter. See when it is your family I dont care what the collateral damage is in your home. But when you step out into the street it becomes another animal entirly. The collatal damage could mean other people that get in your road.

    It's funny, you can know someone your whole life and not be prepared for what they will do in a crisis. Imagine what a gun toting stranger in your yard could do in just a few short seconds?

    The Blindman

  41. Owen Reitzel 2013.07.29

    My question is if that guy Rick came walking uninvited in to my yard and I had no idea who he was, if I was in Florida, could I shoot him and use the Stand Your Ground defense?
    And I'm serious. Of course the first thing I'd ask him what he wanted.

  42. interested party 2013.07.29

    Imagine AIM hosting a similar event.

  43. Rick 2013.07.29

    Interesting question, Owen. One could make a case for "stand your ground." I assumed the woman and two juveniles with the gunman were his family. So, if I pulled out a pistol from my jacket pocket and the gunman shot me, would he be able to make a similar claim because he was defending his family?

    Other than fantasies of the Old West, as seen in TV shows and movies, this urgency to carry around guns for the sake of showing them off seems unprecedented in American history. Being provocative with the public showing of sidearms seems to invite violence. I don't what other message is made when people walk around in public showing off their sidearms.

  44. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.07.29

    I sympathize completely, Rick, and accept that he stepped out his front door with the intention of being provocative wherever he went.

    I'm still curious: what is the civility/etiquette default in situations where you have invited the public onto your property for commercial purposes? Do we expect gun carriers to check with management before bringing their guns onto the property, or, having invited the public in, have merchants/rummage sale holders granted the public the right to engage in their normal public activities on that property until asked by management to leave?

  45. MC 2013.07.29

    My one question is why didn't Rick call the police?

    If there is a strange man with a gun in your yard threatening your family -

    YOU CALL THE POLICE!!! I guarantee if you use the above statement they will be there very quickly.

    It doesn't matter if he is breaking the law or not, If he is threating your family with a gun, YOU CALL THE POLICE!!!

  46. Rick 2013.07.29

    Here's more rope for you, MC. It is not against the law for a person with a permit to open carry in South Dakota. What charge would the police use? I chose not to confront an armed skinhead because I think people seeming to provoke an incident only win if I accept the invitation. I was glad the skinhead left and I wanted nothing more to do with him. Calling the police meant more confrontations with a skinhead who wears a t-shirt proclaiming his right to open carry (and my obligation to not prevent his right to open carry). Case closed.

  47. MC 2013.07.29

    you only need a permit if you are going to carry conceled.

    By law you can carry openly, no permit needed.

  48. Amazed 2013.07.31

    Rick - where do I begin?! You said "To each their own as long as they keep their wierd stuff to themselves." Do I even have to say that just because you think handguns are "wierd" (sic), does not mean the bald (and obviously labeled as a skinhead that was out to hurt and scare people) gentlemen believes handguns are weird. You also said "Coming up my driveway and walking around in my yard with a gun - uninvited - is provocative." Uninvited?! I try not be a smart a$$ because I am happy for everyone to have their own opinion; that's what is great about this world and country. BUT, uninvited?! You were having a garage sale!!! You invited the entire world to walk around your yard; then you get mad because someone walked around your yard who happens to carry a firearm...... Is this "Rick's World, and everyone else just lives in it"? Guns are guns, some like them, some don't. But don't be so ignorant to label everyone who carries a gun. For gods sake, I was in Scheels and saw a man with a gun on his hip. OMG, call the police (as discussed above). Excuse me, what exactly are you going to say to the police? What do you expect the police to do? As far as I'm concerned people who wish to carry, go for it! People who feel it infringes on their right to feel safe, get over being ignorant. Learn about handguns, learn their safety features, etc. Educate yourself so you aren't afraid of a piece of metal and plastic and stop labeling people who choose to carry a weapon. I carry every single day; if you like tell me about yourself and I will start telling you what you can and cannot do because I might feel offended.

  49. Jana 2013.07.31

    What might be lost, but was said before here and in other reports, is that the in-your-face display of a weapon designed to kill doesn't make anybody but the wearer feel better and to the rest it is seen as a threat on their safety and their families safety.

    While the open carry zealots may think they are making a point about their freedom...I don't think it's the point they intended that is being communicated...unless it was that they should be feared.

  50. RB 2013.08.06

    Strange that the people who are against guns are so rude and resort to name calling and bullying when faced with opinions that differ from their own. Their behavior seems rather intolerant. Perhaps they should seek the services of a mental health professional to deal with their gun phobias and fixation on genital size.

  51. Rick 2013.08.06

    RB - You sound like a victim. Are you a victim with your guns? Wow. You are such a shining hero with your gun. Without your gun, perhaps you would not be so shiny. Right? Hey bud. Who's got the fixation here?

  52. RB 2013.08.07

    Rick – You think I'm a victim? Your the one who indicated that you were the victim of an “implied deadly threat” by the mere presence of someone with a gun in a holster. It sounds like he didn't even say boo to you. If you were so unnerved by the presence of the gun, you could have stated this to him and he would have to leave your property or be guilty of criminal trespass. What were you afraid of? The law is on your side and that makes you perfectly safe, right? Alternately, you could have posted a sign in front of your yard stating that you do not allow guns on the premises and even if he had a concealed gun and permit, it would have been illegal for him to carry it on your property. Sounds like you just cowered in fear. Pathetic. Grow a spine.

  53. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.08.07

    RB: (1) Knock off the machismo contest, (2) check your e-mail, and (3) grow a spine and use your real name.

    Rational and courageous citizens have every right to be alarmed by someone using a potentially harmful tool irresponsibly. Carrying a gun in the open is the equivalent of saying "Boo!" to everyone around. The whole point is to intimidate others. Having the law on one's side does not make one "perfectly safe" against someone brandishing a deadly weapon.

  54. MC 2013.08.07

    Let's be fair here, I agree this gentleman was looking to pick a fight with Rick. And Rick gave what he wanted, fear. That's right, fear.

    Rick held a rummage sale. This is an invitation to everyone to come in and look at his wares he was selling. Yes he was invited.
    From the account Rick gave, the pistol remained holstered. The pistol was not drawn or aimed at anyone or anything. He didn't hurt anyone, and he was looking to buy something.

    Rick did not want a confrontation, and apparently he also didn't want to sell anything.
    Rick did not ask him to leave. Rick did not call the police (the ones he trusts with a gun)
    instead he comes on the blogs and calls the gentleman names based solely on his appearance. Even comments on the size of the gentleman's genitals (I don't even what to know)

    If you wanted, you could have been armed yourself. That might have made you feel better dealing with this gentleman. And you might have even made a few bucks selling something.

  55. RB 2013.08.07

    caheidelberger How is over-reacting to someone exercising their 1st and 2nd amendment rights by becoming “extremely angry” rational and courageous? Exactly how was the stranger with the gun “using a potentially harmful tool irresponsibly” in your opinion? It's not like he was taking out his gun and using it like a hammer to crack walnuts.

    When you used the word brandishing, I do not think it means what you think it means Vizzini. Brandish: 1. to shake or wave, as a weapon; flourish: Brandishing his sword, he rode into battle. 2. a flourish or waving, as of a weapon. As I understand it, the stranger never even touched his gun. There was no threat that any rational and reasonable person would perceive unless they were suffering from hoplophobia. Thus, I stand behind my statement that anyone suffering from the unreasonable fear of guns should seek professional help. Here is a link to a video of one such woman who had a crippling fear of guns who was able to overcome it and started a website ( dedicated to helping other women “to both obtain & maintain the proper equipment, skillset, and mindset needed to defend themselves and their loved ones against violent criminal attack.” In the video, she explains the root cause of her unreasonable fear and her victory over it.

    I also disagree with your statement “The whole point is to intimidate others.” when referring to carrying a sidearm. Is that why you think police carry a sidearm? To intimidate the public? Or do you think maybe it has to do with being prepared to meet a threat with appropriate force if necessary to defend their life from an aggressor? Perhaps the gun owner was just inviting civil discourse on the merits of personal protection. If the homeowner had approached the stranger and asked why he felt a need to carry a firearm, he may have learned that he had nothing to fear from those who open-carry and cleared up some of his misconceptions. I personally have done just that and without exception, I have found them to be friendly and patriotic supporters of individual rights and freedom. They are certainly nobody to be feared unless you are a criminal meaning to do them harm or a dictator seeking to rob them of their freedom. Your statement makes the assumption of ill intent and is like saying “the whole point of two men holding hands in public is to shock and offend those who oppose their lifestyle” rather than an honest expression of affection. I wonder if you would make that assumption as well.

    The only statement I can agree with you on is “Having the law on one's side does not make one "perfectly safe..." That is exactly my point with the statement. One's personal safety is ultimately up to the individual. Those who trust the police to protect them from harm are sadly naive. As the saying goes “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.” Despite any good intentions of police, the reality is that they can't possibly be everywhere they are needed all the time nor are they expected to be. I think the following court opinions make the situation abundantly clear.

    Warren v. District of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1 (D.C. 1981).
    "...a government and its agencies are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen..." -Warren v. District of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1 (D.C. App. 1981)

    "Law enforcement agencies and personnel have no duty to protect individuals from the criminal acts of others; instead their duty is to preserve the peace and arrest law breakers for the protection of the general public." Lynch v. N.C. Dept. of Justice, 376 S.E. 2nd 247 (N.C. App. 1989)

    In other words, if you face an aggressor intent on doing you harm, your own actions will determine weather you live or die. If you are fortunate enough to have been training in martial arts for 20 years, then I hope your ninja skills serve you well if you are ever attacked but for the rest of us, we can choose to carry a gun that can make even the most frail person a match for any violent aggressor. I leave you with the following quote:

    Gun Control: The theory that a woman found dead in an alley, raped and strangled with her panty hose, is somehow morally superior to a woman explaining to police how her attacker got that fatal bullet wound. -L. Neil Smith-

  56. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.08.09

    Overreacting (gerund): 1. walking around with a drill all day on the off chance you'll pass by a loose screw; 2. walking around with a firearm all day under the fearful and false assumption that the social contract doesn't work and that firearms provide daily utility.

    (Now check your e-mail, "RB".)

  57. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.08.09

    All right then, MC, in case this isn't clear from my previous statements, let me make it clear so I can avoid the errors you allege Rick to have committed: I hereby state that, even if I invite the public onto my property for a rummage sale, picnic, or other event, I ask that you take your gun off your person and leave it off my property. If you walk onto my property carrying a gun, I will block your way, look you in the eye, and tell you to take your gun and yourself off my property.

    There. Is that enough warning? Because I really don't feel that your desire to carry a gun everywhere should oblige me to spend money on a gun and incur the risk of carrying a deadly weapon with me everywhere I go.

  58. Rick 2013.08.09

    Cory, I'm goin' 180 on this gun stuff. How about if I run over to Kone's Korner and pick up some Glocks, holsters and some extra clips and you and I can hit the garage sales around Madison and the lakes tomorrow? Your head's already shorn, but I'll buzz off my hair, grab a tight-fitting black t-shirt and slap on some black paramilitary boots and we can impress the folks and the children with our demonstration of 'Merican values and macho superiority.

    By the way, where's that militia we oughtta be maintainin' while we're out struttin' around and upholdin' our Second 'Mendment? Maybe we'll get lucky and a crime wave will break out and the police will refuse to respond because we all know what chickens first responders are.

    Just playin' with you rascals. I saw there were 59 comments and I wanted to be #60! Hooyah!!!

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