New Jersey – -(AmmoLand.com)- On February 14th, 2018 at approximately 2:19 p.m. the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida occurred. The horrific and long-lasting effects of this act of extreme violence will be with our country and the families of the victims forever. Over two years later, details about the attack and Monday morning quarterbacking continues to happen.
One of the big things that throw a flag on the play is all the ignored signs. And, no, not the signs to citizens, but from those citizens raising the alarm to authorities. The domestic terrorist had an extensive history of dealing with the police and school resource officers at Douglas. The tools were there…But due to lax policies on how to handle these situations, the authorities did not execute their proper duties, which very may well have stopped this event from unfolding.
The fact has always been, and still remains, if you call the police because someone is a threat, they are supposed to respond and are supposed to act. They did not act.
Enter into the fold anti-gun organization Giffords: Courage to Fight Gun Violence (Giffords). This is another group that at first glance seemingly has good intentions. We as a public witness these things unfold and none of us want to see harm or loss of life due to the actions of domestic terrorists. So, of course, as gun owners we must support them, right? The answer is not that simple. Well, it is, the answer is no.
Through emails obtained by AmmoLand News through OPRA W161324 Giffords Courage to Fight Gun Violence & Phil Murphy, (embedded below) we can see things from a different perspective (we encourage you to read the released documents in full on your own).
On February 15, 2018, at exactly 08:31 a.m. – appx 18 hours after the attack Giffords sent out an email. The email was from Nico Bocour ([email protected]), the Stale Legislative Director at Giffords, directed to Pearl Gabel ([email protected]), the Digital Director in Governor Phil Murphy’s office. The email outlined a full rundown of the events in Parkland, preceded by a very telling narrative. From the email:
“As you know there was an awful shooting at a high school in Florida yesterday. While the news is still very much developing, I did want to reach out because the early reporting on the shooter appears to be demonstrative of a situation where an Extreme Risk Protective Order (ERPO) would be valuable and potentially life-saving. ERPO is the policy I discussed with Kate McDonnell and Justin Dews last Friday and which continues to be a top priority for Giffords. I’d love the opportunity to discuss more with you all.”
Further from the email:
“I expect there will be discussion in the coming weeks on what could have been done to keep firearms out of the hands of this individual…”
Did you catch all that? 17 people were murdered and another 17 injured, and what does Giffords do? They project their policy. Not even a full 24-hour news cycle later.
The seeds were planted in Murphy’s office a week earlier, by their own admission “ERPO is the policy I discussed with Kate McDonnell and Justin Dews last Friday….” For those of you looking for some information on these individuals, Kate McDonnell was Murphy’s Deputy Chief Counsel and Justin Dews Murphy’s Senior Counsel.
“Never Let A Good Crisis Go to Waste” captured by Rahm Emanuel, seems to keep popping up when discussing these anti-civil liberty groups.
A full investigation was not even hardly started, never-the-less completed, and Giffords was out there pounding the pavement with Governor Murphy’s office. One can only speculate how many more emails like that went out that morning? Did other Governors get similar correspondence?
Back to more facts:
- Fact, the domestic terrorist should have not been able to commit this atrocity, and that was under the law at that time. Nothing special, like an ERPO [deadly red flag orders] was needed just competent police work. Competent … Police … Work!
- Fact, the Sheriff’s department dropped the ball, school security was inadequate and the school resource officer retreated, rather than doing his job.
- Fact, Governor Phil Murphy signed A1217, known as the Extreme Risk Protective Order Act of 2018 on 6/13/2018, four months after the email from Giffords.
- Fact, Governor Phil Murphy was endorsed by Giffords when running for Governor of New Jersey in 2017.
- Fact, Governor Phil Murphy was supported by Giffords’ PAC, Americans for Responsible Solutions.
- Fact, ERPOs have turned out to be deadly, as was this case out of Maryland with Gary J. Willis (The re-visitation of policies employing no-knock situations are also under a microscope after several deadly outcomes).
- Fact, ERPOs have already been abused and weaponized by people, something that was brought up in discussions concerning opposition of this unconstitutional law. As outlined in the cases of David Greco and Al Conti. Both situations stemming from free speech that was not favorable.
There are two things that need to be addressed (really way more than that, but who’s counting?). One – the ERPO law in New Jersey, as written is unconstitutional rendering no due process or relief for people who fall in its’ crosshairs. Two – the situation with Giffords needs to be explored further. They saw an opportunity to strike, and strike they did…
Giffords danced in the blood of the dead, way before any of the real details of the tragedy came to surface.
And what did Murphy do? What he always does. Pandered to this special interest group that has spent cash to support his campaign efforts and has a direct line of communications to his cabinet. ERPO is the law of the land in New Jersey.
ERPOs, brought to you by the anti-civil rights group Giffords. Now is a good time to reach out to Murphy’s office and ask questions such as: How can I get a direct audience with you? How much money do we need to donate for these privileges? How big does my group have to be to get this preferential treatment? I’m sure they’ll be happy to answer those questions.
I urge citizens to reach out to the Governor’s office about this and his conspiring with Giffords, to get his perspective and give him some feedback: (609) 292-6000. Perhaps tweeting at him will get his attention: @PhilMurphyNJ and @GovMurphy
OPRA W161324 Giffords Courage to Fight Gun Violence & Phil Murphy 08/2020
John Petrolino is a US Merchant Marine Officer, writer, author of Decoding Firearms: An Easy to Read Guide on General Gun Safety & Use and NRA certified pistol, rifle, and shotgun instructor living under and working to change New Jersey's draconian and unconstitutional gun laws. You can find him on the web at www.johnpetrolino.com on twitter at @johnpetrolino and on instagram @jpetrolinoiii .