Subversive Appeasement is No Way to ‘Save the Second’

Save the Second
How can they when one of their leaders is endorsing freedom control?

U.S.A. – -( “We are two advocates, activists and leaders from opposite sides of the ‘gun debate’ who have come together because we both believe we are at a make-or-break moment,” a co-authored “Open Letter” on AmmoLand Shooting Sports News declared Friday. “Suffice it to say, there is plenty that we disagree on, but for anyone with the genuine goal of reducing the number of preventable gun deaths in our nation, we believe we have an opportunity for real impact that has not existed in years and, if we are not able to seize it, it is likely to have negative repercussions for years to come.”

The writers are trainer Rob Pincus and citizen disarmament careerist Dan Gross, formerly president of the Brady Campaign. Numerous responses, articles, and comments posted on sites frequented by the “gun community” show most aren’t buying what they’re selling.

It’s because of so many responses, and because of a problematic personal history with Pincus that I initially put off writing my own analysis. First, I like to find insights that others aren’t talking about or emphasizing, and second, this shouldn’t be about personal squabbles, nor even about differences of opinion – it should be about evaluating verifiable statements to see which position most closely approximates the truth. With that in mind, some friends whose opinions I respect asked me to weigh in on this and I have no good reason to refuse them.

This isn’t going to be a line-by-line “fisking,” but I am going to try and address some claims Pincus and Gross make and document why what they’re saying just ain’t so. That, and maybe come up with a few relevant recollections and side trips along the way.

First, I challenge the notion of “opposite sides of the gun debate” as a valid concept. There is truth and there is falsehood, and the latter should never be credited with equal weight or value. That and there’s another point they miss throughout,  a saying I first heard decades ago that I have always found both simple and profound:

It’s not about guns. It’s about freedom.

And that’s not up for debate.

Next is their contention that they have the answer to “preventable gun deaths,” followed up by talking about “meaningful change” that relies on a coming together Kumbaya melding of the “interests of the American people,” as if those interests are shared throughout the Republic.

“[W]e must first change the entire conversation, from one defined by politics,” they urge. Remember that line. I’ll come back to it.

“It is about advocates, leaders, and the media considering, far more than they have in the past, the narrative they are helping to create,” they declare. “It is about those who really care about impact, changing that narrative from one that is too often divisive and counterproductive to one that genuinely unites the American public and provides the foundation that is necessary for real, lasting, and fundamental change.”

“This is not just a matter of deciding whether to call it ‘gun control,’ ‘gun violence prevention,’ ‘responsible gun ownership’ or ‘gun safety,’” they argue. No, it’s not. Some of us argue it should be called “citizen disarmament” and  “totalitarianism.”

The minds behind citizen disarmament don’t care about any of their touchy-feely horse****. Those who mean to rule don’t believe the lies they feed to useful idiots ignorant enough to believe that defenselessness makes everybody safer. They want Americans disarmed because it is the ultimate impediment to a “monopoly of violence.” As for the media, how many more examples must we see of lies of commission, lies of omission, universal talking point narratives, smears, outright fabrications, journalistic incompetence, and malpractice to grok what the major newspapers, networks, and social media platforms are about?

“Together, we can cut the number of gun-involved deaths in our country in half and make all of us safer, just by keeping guns from the people we all agree should not have them (i.e., people who are a danger to themselves or others),” Pincus and Gross promise. It’s a hollow one. They can do no such thing. And further, it ignores the reality that anyone who can’t be trusted with a  gun can’t be trusted without a custodian, as evidenced by the three largest mass murders in this country being committed without guns.

That and Baltimore. Does anybody think street criminals are going to play?

“For gun control advocates, it demonstrates an authentic respect for rights, and a compelling context for the most impactful proposed solutions, a context which creates a more powerful whole greater than the sum of its parts,” they fantasize, recalling for me nothing so much as Gary Coleman demanding “What you talkin’ ’bout, Willis?”

“For gun rights advocates, it provides reassurance and tangible demonstration that no one is seeking to take rights away from responsible gun owners,” they soothe us.

Does everybody remember Fletcher from The Outlaw Josey Wales? And of course, the gun-grabbers are talking about taking your guns. That’s why they’re gun-grabbers!

That was the long-range goal of the organization Gross headed for years, as admitted by its founder, Nelson “Pete” Shields in 1976, back when it was still called Handgun Control, Inc.:

“We’re going to have to take one step at a time, and the first step is necessarily — given the political realities — going to be very modest. . . .  [W]e’ll have to start working again to strengthen that law, and then again to strengthen the next law, and maybe again and again.  Right now, though, we’d be satisfied not with half a loaf but with a slice.  Our ultimate goal — total control of handguns in the United States — is going to take time. . . .  The first problem is to slow down the number of handguns being produced and sold in this country.  The second problem is to get handguns registered.  The final problem is to make possession of all handguns and all handgun ammunition-except for the military, police, licensed security guards, licensed sporting clubs, and licensed gun collectors-totally illegal.”

But we’re to believe Gross is now a kinder, gentler confiscator, even though the “plenty that we disagree on” part is left (deliberately) undefined.  News flash: You can’t “respect the Second Amendment” and then endorse infringements. Among other things, that’s called having a big “but.”

That didn’t stop Gross from being introduced by Pincus as a featured speaker at 2019’s Rally for the 2nd Amendment in Washington DC. Notice how he again admitted “we don’t agree on everything” without being required to reveal what he meant, and how, sadly, that didn’t dampen the cheers and applause of those who demanded nothing more than meaningless, happy-talk platitudes:

But wait: Did I miss something? Am I being unfair? After all, go to 5:55 of the above video, where Gross promises:

“And just as importantly, the common ground I want to talk about here today represents an opportunity to keep us all safe without – now wait for it – without any involvement of the government.”

And the crowd went wild.

So you tell me how Dan’s and Rob’s goal of “keeping all guns from certain people” can be accomplished without a government mandate.

Remember earlier when I asked you to remember their line about “changing the conversation from one defined by politics”? You tell me how forbidding private sales, what they call “expanded background checks” can be accomplished without that.

It’s almost like they say one thing and intend another.

You tell me why they now want to “expand” a system that no less a source than the National Institute of Justice admits:

“Effectiveness depends on the ability to reduce straw purchasing, requiring gun registration…”

And what does registration enable?

Meanwhile, Democrat mega-apparatchik Rahm Emanuel is getting national press saying the strategy for bans needs to be exactly what Rob and Dan are saying, “keeping all guns from certain people,” meaning those on watchlists, those “Lautenberged” out of their rights, veterans, those whose mental health is questioned – and generally meaning those who have not even been charged with a crime in many cases, let alone convicted of one, and due process be damned. Not satisfied that all the “loopholes” have been closed, the bans “must” then be expanded to include “boyfriends” and “haters,” and the qualifications to petition expanded from family members to include police.

Add to all this the inconvenient (for them) truth that “gun control” simply does not work.

“Would banning firearms reduce murder and suicide?” criminologists Don B. Kates and Gary Mauser asked in the Spring 2007 Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy. “In 2004, the US National Academy of Sciences … failed to identify any gun control that reduced violent crime, suicides or gun accidents.”

This was “from a review of 153 journal articles, 99 books, 43 government publications, and some original empirical research. The same conclusion was reached in 2003 by the US Centers for Disease Control….”

For Second Amendment advocates to cede that point is to surrender to the citizen disarmament forces, who will then employ every bit of politically-manipulated “junk science” at their disposal to once more do what got the CDC anti-gun agenda (not gun studies in general, as the lie goes) defunded, when its then-director Mark Rosenberg bragged:

“We need to revolutionize the way we look at guns, like what we did with cigarettes. It used to be that smoking was a glamour symbol — cool, sexy, macho. Now it is dirty, deadly — and banned.”

Why give any tactical advantage to those who are intent on disarming us?  For that matter, why do the same for them with “background checks”?

If experience has taught us anything, it’s to take the success of the antis at incremental disarmament seriously. They will never be satisfied and they will never go away. Ceding anything just means surrendering to demands for which they have no legitimate claim – these are, after all, supposedly, our unalienable rights that we’re talking about. Any concession will have the same effect as throwing a scrap of meat to a pack of circling jackals in the hopes you’ll then be left alone. That doesn’t happen in nature and it doesn’t happen in politics.

If you give up on any point you then free up their resources to be used against you on their next attack and give them a new beachhead from which to launch it. Again, this is about nothing less than freedom, and that’s about nothing less than your life and the lives of everyone you care about. You don’t surrender that and you make anyone trying to take it away pay dearly, and when necessary, ultimately.

At least that’s what history teaches to anyone who would learn from it.

I could go on but the points are made. If you have the inclination and the time, you can learn about the BIDS System, which would provide background checks without creating a record of who bought what. That’s why the antis would never accept it, because, again, they’re liars about why they want to require them. (And for the record, I offer that not because I believe such prior restraint is Constitutional, but simply to prove that point.)

I could talk about the naïve insanity of looking at what is happening right now and who is behind the disarmament bills and believing that “pro-gun Democrats” are the same as “pro-freedom Democrats.” And yeah, I get that Republicans have their share of backstabbers and poltroons. For now, at least, we can still get most of them to go our way, but if we keep accepting “lesser of two evils” excuses and not making them pay a price, that will change soon enough.

I could also talk about why Rob first came unglued on me, for advocating that gun owners not give their business to an instructor who is a Democrat activist and who supported Hillary Clinton and helped elect the Northam regime in Virginia. I could also talk about why Rob is in denial over what made that Democrat takeover possible, but I’ve done that elsewhere and the point here was to address the “Open Letter,” not to introduce new grievances and/or resurrect old ones.

So, all I have left to say is that endorsing “gun control” and partnering with an anti who won’t disclose what it is he wants to have taken away from gun owners (under the force of government arms) is one hell of a way to “Save the Second.”

About David Codrea:David Codrea
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

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Lee Williams

An incredible piece, Mr. C. You have forgotten more about good writing and protecting the Second Amendment than most folks will ever know. Truly impressive work, sir.


It seems Mr. Codrea never disappoints. I’m really glad he is on our side !


Excellent work. The ‘gun debate’ is simply a symptom of a much deeper debate. That deeper and more wide spread debate has been going on since the time of our (second) Civil War in the 1860’s. That debate revolves around our most fundamental questions in philosophy. Is God God, Supreme or is man god and supreme? From that basic question you find the roots of modern progressive vs libertarian (liberal) theory in all public policy questions. The Originalist and Textualists compete with the relativists and progressives to define or redefine our original statement of purpose (Declaration) and statement of means… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by nrringlee
Ansel Hazen

Probably top 10 in all you have ever written David.

Lets all stop accepting the cutesy names the left hangs on all the various means they are using to arrive at the one destination this really is. Disarmament as a means to take away our Freedom. Start calling it what it is and correct them in every instance.


Spot on.


There is no middle ground. Give middle ground the other side steals a few inches or feet and declares that is now middle ground. NO, there is no middle ground.


Incrementalism is what has destroyed our constitutional law. The slow and steady march through our institutions is complete. Our original founding principles are in the ash bin of history. Folks are awakening from their public school induced slumber. Reset is based upon Revival. The question is this: what price freedom?


The price of freedom is war.

Roland T. Gunner

And it is way past time we started regaining ground; demand it of our elected representatives. It is not the government’s busines if I chose to carry a pistol on my hip, an AR-15 slung over my shoulder, or an M16 on my back sest.


Repeat after me: “I have a gun. You want my gun. You can’t have it, your move!”

Last edited 1 year ago by USMC0351Grunt

Old joke: A man comes out of a bar and sees a drunk crawling around on his hands and knees under a streetlight. The drunk says he dropped his car keys and the man decides to help look. After a while with no luck he asks the drunk if he’s sure this is where he dropped his keys. The drunk replies he dropped them a ways off in the mouth of a dark alley but it is too dark to look over there. America has a problem with violence. Some of it involves firearms. But of the part involving firearms,… Read more »


Yes, I’ve heard that joke.

America has a problem with Evil.

Except few are willing to look there.


Revival or Bust.


How about instead of putting them “behind bars” we instead place them “below ground.” “Rehabilitation” is a word that has a meaning. When it comes to those who repeatedly commit severe crime this is the meaning that I think is most appropriate: “The action of restoring something that has been damaged to its former condition.” The problem is that the “damage” has, in most cases, occurred when the person was very young. Therefore there is no “restoration” to a “former condition” which could be considered acceptable to society. It is a hard truth; but, none the less, it is the… Read more »


The fault I find in your proposal is that whenever you remove a top tier criminal a lower level one (tries to) rise up from a lesser tier. Criminality must be faced with swift and sure PUNISHMENT. The use of a firearm in a crime should command a long sentenence in prison .


Hey, Gross-Pincus: Want to “cut the number of gun-involved deaths in our country in half ?” Then focus on the mostly urban, mostly black-on-black crime that FBI and other stats show are responsible for over half the homicide and fully 85% (or more!) of the gun violence in the US (in parts of NYC, it’s virtually all gun-involved crime). Instead of unfairly scrutinizing millions of law abiding gun owners, focus on a few thousand gang bangers and other career criminals, many of whom are already known to law enforcement. If it weren’t for that rampant, rising, and out of control violence in about a dozen (mostly… Read more »


Thank you. A point worth repeating. There is nothing ‘liberal’ about the Progressive New Left.


We never had these problems until the bleeding hearts removed the death penalties, ergo, heinous firing squads, hangings, electric chairs and lethal injections. Nope! It’s much better to have these cretins systematically released back into society to cause more murder, rape and mayhem. (SEE: NYC man convicted of murdering his mother, walking down the street kicking and punching an Asian woman in broad daylight.) Yet the left and even the MSM say absolutely NOTHING about the greater death rates being caused by hands, fists and feet? Perhaps we are looking at ALL of this back-ass-wards and maybe we need to… Read more »


There he is. Yep, reinstate the death penalty and no more life in prison. Use DNA evidence and not the word of the policeman. Use video evidence. Show it, prove it, end it.


Hi. I haven’t been here long but I have never seen anything from you in my short past. If you are going to write like this and make such good points, don’t be a stranger. Jump in more often if you can and want too.


There you go picking on the Democrats “slave class.” And yes I thought about it before using the term. They are what they are.


A guy I know came and told me he just decided to turn his gun to prevent gun violence.
I asked him, is he now going to cut off his penis to prevent rape. Stupid is that stupid does.


Well? As a “friend”, is he going to turn them in to YOU?


Your on a roll today.


X Ring again Mr Codrea. Thanks for eating those other author’s lunches. Most of us can’t stomach their lunch of tofu and bean sprouts on gluten free bread.

Comprise with evil is still evil


Excellent rebuttal, David.

I’m grateful the AmmoLand Community has responded over the past few days.



Mr. Codrea, Thank you for another very well written informative article!! The gun grabbers, The Brady Center to prevent Gun Violence and the other names it previously went by and all the other anti gun groups existing are nothing but SUBVERSIVES, to undermind and eradicate the Second Amendment. Yes there are politicians who agree with their agenda to eradicate the 2A. I refer to these groups as SUBVERSIVES because they are with the politicians who agree them are and have been working on laws to regulate the law abiding citizens from possessing and using firearms legally for carry and self… Read more »


Choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.


Since anti-gun rights proponents have convinced themselves that “Universal Background Checks ” are what’s needed, how about we go at “Universal” from a different direction. Give all citizens access to the NICS system. We can do our own background checks to sell to an individual. Are they protecting the privacy of their list of known criminals while trying to invade the privacy of non-criminals ?


One trouble you might run into is you go to check out a person and that person doesn’t show up on “the list.” There were people I would run into that weren’t on a certain list that supposedly contained everyone’s name and yet their name wasn’t there. Further checking would have someone saying “They are one of those.” Or someone saying, “Never you mind.” Both answers meant the same thing. And if you were lucky you didn’t get a call asking why you were searching for that particular name.


RoyD, sounds like you speak from experience. It sounds like the list is incomplete, therefore unreliable. It also sounds like there are people on the list who get an exception because they are co-operating and therefore informants and unreliable. This seems to indicate that any background check system serves only as information collection to be used as a political weapon when it suits them.


You are a smart cookie.


Consider – ponder this – the system – regardless of who has access to it – is only as good as the info put into it. Two words will suffice as proof of that – Sutherland Springs.


in theory the list is only of those who are under current law debarred the use of arms.Thus George, who has never even gotten a parking ticket nor been late paying his annual mulct from the gummit, is not on that list. Go ahead and sell him your gun. but all this misses the REAL point of the NICS system.. they ARE getting identifying information on every firearm purchased, The THEORY is that the “record” will be “destroyed ” within some imagiary period of time. If you believe this, you should take advantage of my offer to sell you my… Read more »


Tio – is that perchance ‘Super Chicken’ from the ’60s?
You raise a point – consider this though – ALL legally manufactured firearms ARE on a list – at least thru their initial legal sale. Who knows what might happen to them after that? What the antis really want is to know where they are at all times and who has them. Never mind that even LE can’t keep track of all of their own guns all of the time.

Comrade X

For those of us who support the 2A;

With friends like Pincus who needs enemies?


In my 80 trips around the Sun, I’ve never seen this country more divided then it is today. Not even the anti Vietnam protests of the 60s. There’s no reconciliation, no civil debating. President Trump was/is the closest thing to a National Savior that I’ve seen since President Reagan, but now the National Traitors have leaned to manipulate the system that only a Righteous and Moral society can sustain.
The decline of Religion has given rise to the secular evils that are bringing about the downfall of the America I once knew.
May God have mercy on us.


I am 15 trips shy of that number but I agree.


Consider the liberal logic of the anti-gunners if we were discussing rape. Are we as a nation of mostly civilized people supposed to neuter all males because one woman gets raped?

Last edited 1 year ago by USMC0351Grunt

Lol, this one is one of the best I have read in a long time. Thanks, I really needed a good laugh today. Just found out how much I owe uncle sam for last year and today was pay day and I am already broke. Have a good one and thanks again. I am going to share it with my friends.


USMC – I understand the ‘logic’ behind your comment but I will point out that even if that draconian measure were enacted, it would not necessarily stop that crime since other objects could (and would and have been) still be used to perpetrate that crime.


Sleep with the enemy, wake up with the enemy’s diseases. Show me your friends and cohorts, and I’ll show you your beliefs, morals, mores, and future. A friend of my enemy, is no friend of mine. Birds of a feather, flock together. In the gun community, Pincus slit his own throat and bled out. . RIP, Rob. In 1958. the late Col Jeff Cooper, handgun expert and founder of Gunsite Academy, stated, “Killing is a matter of will, not weapons. You cannot control the act itself by passing laws about the means employed.” A politician with a law never stops… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by StLPro2A

Rob Pincus: Secret Agent for the Facebook Police

The embattled anti-gunner has weaponized his social media to silence his critics.


Rob Pincus is persona non grata as far as I’m concerned.


the viral pandemic of violent crime against persons and their stuff is a recent pandemic. It will continue as long as gummit continues to excuse, coddle, forgive, overllook, dismiss, such violant action. This “catch and release” meme we’ve got going rampant these past couple decades is the result of being soft on crime, the bleeding heart liberal nutjobs refusing to DEAL with it. It will continue as long as such actions are NOT dealt with. At present, the “risk-reward” equation strongly favours the criminal activity. When proven murderers are quickly released from plea bargain sentences back onto the streets, why… Read more »


It’s not about guns. It’s about freedom. This is so true. It is even stated clearly in that much-hated Second Article: a FREE state can ONLY be secured as long as the members of that free state retain their God-given right to arms. Those two items, freedom and the means to preserve it (arms) re inseparable, and THAT is the critical flaw all the gun grabbing arguments and lies attempt to bypass. Gage tried it 246 years ago (in two more weeks) and it backfired on him bigtime. Further it is never a matter of “one side” winning totally over… Read more »


I think Pincus is just trying to get laid.

A certain percentage of white suburban women would find what he wrote “reasonable.”


Well, he is no dummy on that point. With all of those Moms Demand Action chicks out there who are married to progressive eunuchs someone has to fill that void.


His whole schtick just reeks of it. The way he writes and speaks is just annoying as hell.

Roland T. Gunner

He’s trying to get laid by Gross.


best way to cut down on crime is national concealed carry and constitutional carry

Get Out

Perhaps these buffoons should focus more on on criminal control instead of gun control.


Here is what one antigun editor had to say about guns in general and the latest Cali shooting in particular. Call it: opposition research.

Editorial: America’s parade of gun violence comes to Orange, Calif. (


I call it hog wash! More lies!


I get where Rob Pincus’ head was on this, I really do. I can even say that I support the idea of gun safety, the same as anyone else. But while I like Rob Pincus, as a person, although I have never met him, in this case, I can only say that, at the least his actions are ill advised. I won’t join in the group that says that we must hate Rob, or shun him, or never accept anything he ever says again, since he screwed the pooch on this one. It is just like anyone else, even Jim… Read more »

Roland T. Gunner

Former big city police sergeant and DoS contractor here, now retired; and a BIG fan of open carry, long guns in psrticular. Your scorn of my very well thought out and educated positions is truly offensive. And you know where you can stuff your “moderate” positions.