Gun Control

As an immigrant who grew up the first nine (9) years of his life in a communist controlled Czechoslovakia it should not surprise anyone that I do not believe in any form of gun control whatsoever. But I come from a different world than most folks both originally and later as a US Army Ranger. Had the Czechs been armed at the time of the Warsaw Pact Invasion in 1968 events could have very well turned out much differently! The US faces no such threat currently, and its threat in the future may be more from within rather than from an external one of invasion.

Protection of Soft Targets (Law Enforcement vs Security Guards and Conceal Carry by teachers):

As result of a growing number of shootings in schools, churches, and public events, it appears that we need to change our strategy and protect the innocent and help save those in time of great danger. Schools are particularly vulnerable but so are many other places. The best way to protect schools is in my opinion with local Law Enforcement officers, and not one officers but two officers at a time on a rotating basis making it their normal duty.

Law Enforcement (The 99% deterrence):

Law enforcement officers protecting schools is a much better solution than security guards or having teachers conceal carry, as law enforcement officers are vetted properly when hired, go through proper training initially, have on-going training, and are constantly on the street, so to speak, keeping their skills sharp. Reacting properly in a very tense situation requires instinct that comes from on-going training and street smarts. Law enforcement typical reaction would be by going on the offensive, placing any active shooter immediately off balance and possibly rendering them ineffective. The other plus side to this solution is that local law enforcement would stand a good chance of getting intelligence on potential shooters early beforehand, thus being proactive rather than reactive. It may also be good public relations for the local police force within their community. There is a cost issue as additional officer would need to be hired.

Security Guards (The gamble):

Security guards are not a good option for protecting schools as their skill level is unknown, they typically do not go through on-going training, may not have the skills necessary to deal with an active shooter, and do not face on-going stress on a daily basis (this includes retired law enforcement). Unlike active law enforcement officers security guards may not react instinctively and their reaction may be based on how they feel that day, how much sleep they had the night before or what they ate that morning. Security guards may react defensively which is a “kiss-of-death in an ambush when confronted by an active shooter who is determined and who would consequently be in charge of the flow of the situation. In addition, complacency may set - in which can be very detrimental when a shooting situation arises. Security Guards are all about deterrence, but when that deterrence fails it fails in a big way as a smart shooter will figure out relatively quickly beforehand whether a particular security guard is a threat that can be easily dealt with, especially if there is only one guard protecting the facility. Not so with Law Enforcement officers, especially if there are two officers on station. In my opinion security guards are actually safety officers whose job is to deter and nothing more, and hence the deterrence may actually work if there is no other way either due to cost or availability of law enforcement officers.

Conceal Carry by Teachers (The real big gamble):

While conceal carry has been effective for teachers in Israel it is in my opinion a very bad idea for teachers to conceal carry in the US, unless there is no other protection of the school, such as law enforcement. Conceal Carry by teachers then may be as a last resort. In Israel the threat is a terrorist threat, not so in US in schools.

For the same reason as security guards, but more so, teachers may not be properly trained as it is not even remotely their job to protect people, their skill level is unknown, they typically do not go through on-going training, may not have the skills necessary to deal with an active shooter, and do not face that type of ongoing stress on a daily basis. In addition, a gun may go loose throughout the school and be accidentally discharged. Teachers should teach and conceal carry should only be a last resort if there is no other way!

Protecting Soft Targets

Protection of soft targets such as active sporting events, various venues, concerts, carnivals or festivals, conventions etc. may be done utilizing the 3-ring security system. The 3-ring security system is the best way to counter an active shooter or terrorist threat. Soft targets such as malls are far more difficult to protect as they are on-going/open every day and to protect these type of targets a rapid law-enforcement response may be the best option. However, a determined shooter that is deterred by the strong protection of one target will simply move on to the next less protected target as time is on their side.

Law enforcement has already identified the commonality between shooters in the United States and the best protection method long term may simply be by connecting the dots through good intelligence and addressing the root cause of the issue. Law enforcement agencies that are focused on identifying potential shooters already know what I am referring to above but what they may be lacking is a consolidated program in the US across all 50 states. The problem is compounded by the simple fact that in the US we have strong privacy laws so that a potential shooter may go unnoticed until it is too late. The best long term solution and strategy in my opinion is to implement active programs to deter shootings before they occur. Identify a potential shooter through good intelligence without violating personal privacy and bring that individual back into-the-fold so to speak.

The Generational Strategy

The very long term generational strategy is simply good public education of our youth starting at ground level in 1st grade and continuing that education through the 12th grade. This is one of the reasons why I am a very big proponent of an excellent public school system. A public school system that is well funded, classroom sizes of 16 students max, comprehensive and free tutoring program for struggling students, well funded after school sports programs and facilities that are first rate world wide and proper teacher salaries to boot. It may take a generation to solve the problem of random mass shootings in the US but it can be done through education!

Banning Weapons?

Anyone who for a moment thinks that banning weapons, limiting them, or limiting ammunition sales to deter mass shootings is simply wishing or hoping for the best. In the history of the World at no time has banning anything ever worked! All banning anything managed to accomplish is the creation of a black market for the banned item(s), increased its cost to acquire those items, and such as was the case of the Prohibition Period in the US it criminalized the common individual who violated the ban. Any time a country institutes a law that bans something for which it does not have the support by many of its people is in my opinion 1) irresponsible, and 2) history has proven that such laws do not work properly and are not enforceable long term. (The Cannabis ban by the Federal Government is one such example in the United States today and I predict this ban will fall like a set of lined dominos in the near future.) Any determined individual will always have the ability to get a weapon, or they will improvise to get their mission done, this is simply a fact. Education, access to special programs by individuals, proactive defense through gathering of intelligence, acceptance of all people from all walks of life, are the keys to preventing mass shootings in the US. “The Blind Cannot Lead The Blind.”

Gun Control

The Second Amendment

Why do we have the Second Amendment? It wasn’t that long ago that General George Washington's Continental Army faced a strong and well equipped British occupying force whose intent was to subdue the Colonials and keep them under the strong thumb of the King of England. Taxes was one issue but there were others. The Continental Army lacked sufficient arms and gun powder as the British confiscated both from the colonials. This was no surprise as the British governed the colonies at the time.

It’s a lesson General Washington and Congress never forgot and is perhaps one of the major reasons for writing into the Second Amendment, the right of the people to keep and bear arms.

The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution reads: "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".

Stripped of our arms, or handicap our arms, or controlling ammunition are all a methods of infringement.

I approach the content of the 2nd Amendment as a soldier and not as someone who is disconnected from soldiering. General George Washington was a soldier who led the Continental Army to oust the British and I believe he did not INTEND, NOR WOULD HAVE AGREED AND WOULD HAVE CONSIDERED IT FOLLY, to handicap weapons in such a way so as to render the function of those weapons away from their intended purpose i.e. handicapped magazine extraction. He also, in my opinion, would not have agreed to control ammunition as during the 1776 Revolution gun powder was one of the key elements for sustaining the Continental Army as a viable threat to the British.

The second Amendment was kept in plain language for all to understand and for not to be misunderstood! It was not intended to be pulverized or twisted to mean something else.

Gun Control California current laws on the books purposely handicap weapons from their intended function and the intent behind the law by its writers is to infringe American's right to bear arms. A handicapped weapon with ammunition locked up in the barn may as well be a shoulder weight. In addition, the intent of the control of ammunition sales is an underhanded way of controlling which type of arms and to what effectiveness the current arms may be used by Americans living in California.

The 39 million Americans living in California have the ultimate say so and their opinion matters the most. Perhaps a one fit for all is not the answer. Americans living in the coastal regions may have a vastly different opinion on gun control versus Americans living in other parts of California.

A change is needed and one that makes sense for the State. As Governor of California I aim to challenge the current gun control laws of California, all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary, as it is my opinion that the current law as written infringe Americans right to bear arms in the state and are unconstitutional.

"The average American today deserves the trust and responsibility that so
many before them have valiantly fought for, for over two centuries!
To do otherwise would be to marginalize those who have come before us
that have paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep us free and have trusted us
not to do the easy thing but to do the right thing!"