January 2009

Down Range: 01/09

So Many Words, So Little Time

For the November 2008 "Downrange," I wrote that I was in "… a grim mood, because I believe I have seen the future, and the future has shown me that Barack Hussein Obama will become the 44th president of the United States." Alas, that has come to pass. And at least one Gun Tests reader thought it was my fault.

Todd Woodard

Todd Woodard

In an email addressed to my alter ego, Tim Woddard, former Gun Tests reader Paul Peterson of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, wrote: "I personally was appalled at the defeatist attitude you took in this month’s [November 2008] editorial. This election is too important for all gun owners to have a gun publication roll over and give the election to the Senator from Illinois.… [Y]ou are the ONLY publication who is doing anything other than urging their readers to vote AGAINST the Senator from Illinois.… After reading your editorial, I can no longer subscribe to your magazine in good conscience. Please cancel my subscription."

Of course, we’ll abide by Mr. Peterson’s wishes and cancel him. But at the same time, I have to point out he’s wrong. Though I clearly expressed a preference for the honorable but flawed candidate John McCain, I nonetheless saw that Obama would win. That’s not defeatist, that’s being a realist. And, of course, facts have proven my premonition to be correct, however downcast that makes gun owners now.

This is a political example of what we do at Gun Tests—call them like we see them. Over the years, this attitude has p.....-off plenty of readers and manufacturers because we shot something, and then said we didn’t like it, and enumerated the reasons for that opinion. For us, being right is much more important than being promotional. Also, I know the rest of the Gun Tests readership is savvy enough to have seen through any boosterism of McCain as the probable winner—dozen of readers like Walter Goss wrote me to say they saw Obamanation coming, too. (See page 27.) One GT reader called McCain "Dead Candidate Walking." Very dark inside that guy’s head, but funny as hell because it was so right.

Anyway, the Obama inauguration looms on January 20. You blue-vote gun-owners better get with the program and see the coming storm of Biden, Holder, Emanuel, Pelosi, Schumer, and Reid. It’s going to get bad.

Defeatism? No, realism.

Free Plaxico Burress. Yes, I know you’re tired of hearing about the New York Giants’ wide receiver, who put a loaded and unholstered pistol in his warmups, then shot himself in the leg while at a nightclub, and who now faces Manhattan gun charges. We all agree that Plax’s gun-handling skills are lacking. But there are two angles on this that you might not have seen. John Lott, Jr. has written that NFL players are much more likely to be the victims of crime, on a per-capita basis, than the rest of us. Apparently, being wealthy and visible makes them targets—who knew? And lawyer Dave Kopel has written that Manhattan’s gun ban might be unconstitutional under Heller. Wouldn’t that be a hoot if Burress becomes the test case that gets New York City’s gun ban overturned? GT