Smokey the Bear Had It Right
I have a fairly effective strategy for talking Hollywood and music stars into befriending me on Facebook. They will see at least one post of mine before quickly clicking Delete Friend to wipe me off their computers. Truth is divisive indeed!
Actually, I exaggerate. Surprisingly most of them remain FB friends longer than I expect in spite of me always spouting off my pro-freedom rhetoric that most of them despise. (I will tell you more about my Facebook interaction in another article.)
Last night one of the few big-star FB friends I actually do admire and respect went head-to-head with me. The mini-debate was friendly and he has not removed me from his FB friend list. I appreciate that. I won't tell you who it is but who he is isn't important anyway.
The importance is the implication of our discussion.
Silver Dollar City, Branson, Missouri
A major contributor to America's anti-freedom, anti-family, gun-control movement is Peter Herschend, owner of the popular Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri as well as Celebration City, Dollywood, Stone Mountain Park, The Adventure Aquarium, and The Newport Aquarium.
Herschend has spent countless dollars fighting the Second Amendment. Several websites describe him as backing major "grassroots" campaigns against the right for citizens to own firearms. The wealth of this guy is admirable. His power is great. Yet, his push to take away guns from honest, taxpaying citizens is about as "grassroots" as George Soros' "grassroots" effort to elect Al Gore, John Kerry, and then Barack Obama.
Silver Dollar City is promoted as pro-family. In general it is. There is not one family in the nation who would feel threatened by the content at one attraction or store or exhibit in the place. Looks are deceiving however. Before you enter the first gate, you see the No Guns Allowed on These Premises sign.
It turns out Silver Dollar City is potentially an extremely dangerous place for your loved ones. Protect them and keep them away from this and Herschend's other properties. Branson, Missouri is a unique place for a vacation. Go and enjoy yourselves! But keep your family safe by keeping them well-away from Silver Dollar City where the lawbreakers know that visitors to the park are not unlike defenseless sheep in a pasture.
I do not need to explain more about this to LewRockwell.com readers. You are well aware of the dangers of a gun-free zone. You are well aware that gun-free is a synonym for (using Branson-speak) easy-pickins'.
Revisiting My Facebook Discussion
Last night, this famous gentleman added a pro-Branson post. He was encouraging all his FB friends to visit Branson. That was great. As I said, Branson is virtually all family-friendly. Sure it is Hicksville for the elitists but who cares about the elitists? Just go and enjoy the food and shows and attractions. Unlike Vegas (which I love too but for other reasons, all of which have to do with freedom), you won't be shielding your little ones' eyes every time you pass a billboard.
When I read his pro-Branson post I realized how few people know about Silver Dollar City's massive anti-gun activities, funded by SDC money that good, honest, law-abiding citizens paid for through the gate admission. Now Herschend can do whatever he wants with his money! But at the same time, it is incumbent upon us to let others know what he is doing if his spending habits put us in danger. And they do.
So I replied with the following:
If only the owner of Silver Dollar city did not spend tens of thousands of dollars to prevent good, honest citizens from being able to protect themselves when he did everything in his quite complete power to block concealed carry in Branson and all of Missouri. It is dangerous now for families to be inside Silver Dollar City where he does not allow concealed carry for lawful citizens (only lawbreakers can carry there). Protect your family!
He immediately replied,
Greg, every time our families come to Branson, they want to go to Silver Dollar City.....they love it and have always found it to be very safe......
Herschend Would Love Fort Hood
The problem is this took place yesterday as the Fort Hood murder rampage news was still breaking.
Now it may be slimy of me to use the Fort Hood murders to explain the reasons for my agenda, but I guarantee you that the gun control advocates are going to try to find ways to twist it for their evil purposes.
So I replied with a simple explanation as to why the statement, "have always found it to be very safe…" was vapid.
I said: Until today, families who visited Fort Hood always "found it to be very safe."
How Safe Are Police States?
When only the police have guns, that society is known as a Police State. In every society this has been tried, and failed, of course the military had guns too.
Remember when England stopped allowing their police (Bobbies) to carry firearms? How well did that turn out for them? I always said that if England was consistent — and it is not — then England should have removed all weapons from its military's hands as well. They should be beacons to the world at removing guns from the equation. They should show the world that love and peace conquers all.
But they would never have allowed their military to go without guns because even the idiots who force these policies on their willing masses know that a gunless England would be invaded in about 25 minutes by one of several countries who would like nothing more than an easy takeover of that island.
One of the weakest but most-often-made arguments for gun control is that police should be the only ones with guns to protect the innocent. I do not have to remind LewRockwell.com readers that when seconds count the police are just minutes away.
But anyone with a single brain cell knows that the police cannot protect you. At Virginia Tech, only the police had guns and after the first wave of murders took place, the police stormed the campus. Later that day, the second wave of murders took place and still, only the police and the murderer had guns.
And tragically, we saw that this week at Fort Hood.
One Bullet Could Have Stopped Many
There are good reasons why weapons are locked in armories at military bases when not being used for training. We can all understand that. Still, why are individual soldiers not allowed sidearms while performing day-to-day duties? I don't know, but I will say I suspect there are good reasons for that too.
Still, the point was made at Fort Hood, wasn't it? Until this week, you would have said that Fort Hood, the largest United States military base in the world, would be the safest place on the planet to walk peaceably!
But dozens were murdered and wounded. Dozens of soldiers who no doubt were skilled at shooting and who had the ability to take out a lone shooter are dead or maimed.
If only one of them had the means to shoot one bullet...
Please do not get me wrong. I am not advocating that the military change its on-base policy for carrying firearms. My point is this: If the largest US military base on earth is a dangerous place to walk around without a firearm, where thousands of highly-skilled shooters all around you can do absolutely nothing to protect you, why is Silver Dollar City safe?
Why is anywhere safe?
Smokey the Bear said, "Only you can prevent forest fires." Well, only you can be responsible for your own protection. Only you can be responsible for your family.
Why would you ever advocate anything else?
If he was politically correct, Smokey the Bear would have said, "Only fire departments can prevent forest fires."
When a fire breaks out at my house, I would rather stop it before it gets bigger. And we live in the middle of nowhere, and yes we have prepared our property with the means to extinguish fires wherever they may start.
We have also prepared ourselves not to call 911 when we are threatened.
Smokey never said rely on the fire department to prevent fires.
We live in a country run by politically correct Smokey Bears.
I miss the old Smokey.
November 9, 2009
Greg Perry [send him mail] is the pistol-packing author of more than 75 books. He loves to combine his favorite hobby — guns — with his second favorite — online auctions — by teaching others how to buy and sell firearms, knives, and ammo in online auctions legally and easily! eBay may not respect your freedoms but the free market does. You can comfortably buy and sell weapons-related items in a simpler-than-eBay environment by getting his profit-boosting book, Guns Galore! How to Buy and Sell Guns, Knives, and Ammo in Online Auctions Easily Without eBay!
Copyright © 2009 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.