Meet The Biggest Celebrity At The Richmond Gun Rally.

Know who was the most photographed person attending Monday’s big gun rally in Richmond?  It wasn’t Alex Jones who has finally admitted that maybe, just maybe the slaughter of 26 adults and children at Sandy Hook actually occurred.  It also wasn’t Dick Heller who still can’t keep an assault rifle in his DC apartment although, thank God, at least he can protect himself with a loaded handgun. No, the day’s celebrity was a guy from Bergen, NY who showed up toting a sniper rifle that can deliver a 50-caliber shell out to a thousand yards or more.

The owner of this piece of equipment lives in Bergen, NY, a small, upstate town located in the middle of nowhere.  In fact, where he lives is just a few miles up the road from Attica, the maximum-security prison that holds several thousand not-very-nice guys and is occasionally visited by folks who remember the ‘uprising’ which occurred there in 1971. The town has about 3,000 residents and the primary business location is Ralph and Rosie’s Pizzeria which has been operated by the same family for more than forty years. In other words, Bergen is a serious and strategic location and if you control Bergen, you probably can easily threaten the major industries located in Rochester or Buffalo.

I have to assume that the reason someone in Bergen, NY goes out and spends a couple of thousand bucks on a 50-caliber sniper rifle is because, sooner or later, he will find himself perched on some rocky outcrop over the town, trying to get those terrorist invaders into the cross-hairs of his sniper scope. I can’t imagine he would use this piece of hardware to defend himself and his loved ones if someone just happened to try and break into his home. First of all, he’d have to pick the damn thing up, swing it around, aim it at the intruder and drop a cap (which means: pull the trigger.) That takes way too long.

For that kind of threat, the guy probably has at least three Glocks sitting around the house – one in the living room, another in the bedroom and a third hitched up to the holster on his pants. So, if he’s got a Glock riding on his waist, why does he need another one sitting next to his bed?  Because he’s not about to get into bed wearing his pants, okay?  Being prepared means always being prepared.

On the other hand, those Glocks won’t help him at all when the parachutes start dropping out of the sky and the invasion of Bergen begins to take place. And the enemy won’t just be coming from above. Bergen is only 15 miles from Lake Ontario, which means that the town is also potentially threatened by a deployment of troops brought in through the St. Lawrence Seaway. I mean, you never know.

When I was 9 years old, this was 1953, I somehow saved up a few dollars, walked down to the hardware store on the corner and bought myself a Daisy Red Ryder bb-gun.  I took the gun home, loaded it with bb’s, and for the next year or so I managed to kill Cochise and his entire Apache band of warriors again and again and again. Where did I think I was sitting? On some bluff overlooking Monument Valley in Utah where every cowboy movie was filmed.  Where was I really sitting? In the backyard of the home that was smack dab in the middle of Washington, D.C.

The only difference between what I was doing in my backyard with my Daisy Red Ryder and what the guy from Bergen was doing toting his rifle around the Richmond rally is that I wasn’t old enough in 1953 to buy a real gun. Believe me, I have made up for that situation many, many times over the past 67 years. I’m not a gun nut for nothing.

And neither is the guy from Bergen who told all those reporters that he wanted to demonstrate his support for 2-Amendment ‘rights.’ The truth is he’s just like me. He likes guns.

22 thoughts on “Meet The Biggest Celebrity At The Richmond Gun Rally.

  1. Yep, the small town of Bergen, NY. About a dozen miles SW of Rochester on State Route 33 and a stone’s throw from Churchville, NY., where my Univ of Rochester undergrad advisor once lived. When I was an undergrad, I think my motorcycle knew the way through there by heart since my family and best friend lived in Alden, which is about a dozen miles East of Buffalo along the same NY 33. Ah, memory lane.

    I actually shot a 50 at the gun club one day. I was over at one of the pistol pits shooting a sidearm version of a Weapon ‘O War (a Springfield Armory M1911) and heard this BOOOOMMMM coming from the rifle range so I finished up practicing for the Zombie Apocalypse and walked over. If you were within five yards or so of this gun when it went off you could feel the visceral pressure wave from the muzzle blast diverter (or whatever they call that thing that deflects the muzzle blast). Turns out one of the other club members had a custom, off brand bolt action rifle (not a Barrett). The owner asked if I wanted to try it. Sure, why not? It had a double trigger of some sort. The first armed the second trigger, which was the most hair trigger I ever shot so when you were on target, you could just “think” the trigger and it went off. It was quite the fun gun to shoot but at five bucks a round, not to mention the gun itself costing at least several thousand dollars, a little rich for my blood as a toy. I spent my ten grand on a used motorcycle. If the Second American Revolution happens, I suppose I’ll regret my choice.

    But characterizing these as somehow indicating bad intent is just not right. As Mike said, some people like guns and these are The Mother of All Rifles. Heck, as Charles Whitman showed, a Remington 700ADL in a piddling 6 mm (0.243 inch actual, I think) is quite the effective sniper rifle out to several hundred yards, although it masquerades as a deer rifle.

    • What you’re talking about is a double-set trigger. You could have pulled the primary without first pulling the secondary and it would have been normal to very heavy, but once you pull that set-trigger, it’s often very light to so light your fingertip can’t perceive the face of the trigger.

      They also make them in single-trigger variants where you put your finger behind the trigger and push it forward until you hear the click….then it’s go-time.

  2. I don’t have a problem with .50 BMG rifles either, even semi-auto ones,as long as they are sufficiently regulated – which, happily seems to be the case. Like 12# Napoleans their not much suited for criminal use.

    I wish those “patriots” could see themselves through the eyeballs of sensible people. I’d sure protest for my gun “rights” but not dressed for WW 3.

    • You can buy one in NM if you have the greenbacks and can pass the 4473 quiz. But the price tag alone ensures these are rare. I saw two for sale in Fanta Se for 12 grand for the used semiauto and a mere 8 grand for the bolt action one.

  3. “I have to assume that the reason someone in Bergen, NY goes out and spends a couple of thousand bucks on a 50-caliber sniper rifle is because, sooner or later, he will find himself perched on some rocky outcrop over the town, trying to get those terrorist invaders into the cross-hairs of his sniper scope.”

    Or he owns a gun range with a long rifle range where that gun shines over more conventional hunting-style rifles. Or offers Rentals where somebody would want that experience.

    And why would he carry it to Virginia? So he could get anti-freedom nuts to get their britches in a bind, and then be able to note that it was all over nothing.

    Plus lugging that big Hoss around while wearing Armor is a healthy days workout!

    • Yeah, it must be healthy. But going around with all that stuff looks silly. (True, when I go to a rendezvous dressed like a long hunter I look silly too. But then, that’s the idea.)

      • Given that he owns a business his photo is everywhere, and I bet all the local media will want to interview him as a public interest story.

        Wise business move.

    • Tom, what I’ve observed from personally working with Brady, and now Everytown, is that these folks are no more anti-freedom than you or I. Many have lost family members, including children, to needless gun violence.
      Reducing gun violence – that’s they’re true motivation. So go on this website and to get a better feel for who they really are;

      Get back to me with what you think.

      • Two years ago I was working with my state rep on a UBC bill and making progress. Then communication went dark. Looked at the lobbyist data after the legislative session and found out my legislator took a $2,500 check from Everytown. Gee, I wondered if me being iced out and her fighting tooth and nail for the Everytown bill without any amendments had a correlation with the money.

      • I do not question their loss, or their motivation. My issue is with their methods.

        Everytown and Brady Before it are top-down groups and work for a single-minded agenda, and these groups USE survivors to push an agenda that most often has NOTHING to do with the death of their loved one or their injury.

        I can go into depth of the various stories that I’m more familiar with that are on that page….or I could talk about some of the people you’ve personally worked with.

        Some of them very much are using death and tragedy to push a personal agenda. Others are being used by the organization to manipulate or pull on heart strings.

        You know yourself, you were used. A Gun owner who supports gun control makes them look centrist…..never mind that they kept heaping more and more radical agendas on your plate, as they ignored your protests.

        As soon as you are no longer useful, you are discarded.

        It isn’t about “Common Sense”, it isn’t about loss, it’s about banning guns, no matter what they tell you. And if somebody is interested in reasonable restrictions on firearms and goes to work for such organizations….or worse yet if they want to actually reduce violence, they are unfortunately acting in ignorance, and there are people in place to foster that ignorance.

        I’ll close with a link of my own that I think outlines this better than anything else could be. I think you’ll know him, and his story well.

  4. Khal,

    What items in your UBC bill may have caused Everytown to balk at it, assuming that’s what happened?

    • When I get home I’ll look for my markup. Two things I remember suggesting. 1. Private sales to holders of a state issued concealed carry permit would not require a bkg check. 2. For long guns, a signed bill of private sale with gun type, seller, and buyer names kept by buyer and seller would be acceptable for selling a gun to someone you would personally vouch for. Especially useful in wayoutinthemiddleofnowhere places in New Mexico where urban crime not an issue.

      May have been other things.

      • Khal, you can’t run a backdoor registry with those Amendments. That bill would both increase public safety AND make gun confiscation more difficult. Of course Michael Bloomberg would oppose that.

      • I spoke to my own house representative about #1 above. He said there was no “political interest” in such an exemption. Note he said political interest. Nothing about sound public policy, risk calculation, etc. Then I found out he got $2500 from Everytown, as did all the other legislators pushing the Everytown version of the UBC. Later I had a talk with one of the leaders in the New Mexico Shooting Sports Assn. He said gun owners opinions were pretty much iced out.

        There ain’t no middle ground here, to quote what someone on this site once told me.

  5. Thanks.

    We did two BC bills MN (2008 & 2013, I think). They both had an exemption for valid CCW permit holders and another for transfers between close family members. But it covered all classes of firearms. Neither passed – due to the “slippery slope” arguement.

  6. So, Mr. Gurtek. You want .50 caliber rifles to be sufficiently regulated? To date, how many crimes have they been used to commit? Last I heard it was almost completely ZERO. That’s fewer than the crimes committed by black powder weapons.
    You want an extra layer of scrutiny and regulation on something that is not a problem.

    You are the kind of gun owner I cannot understand. You would happily throw your fellows under the bus because their needs for firearms are different than yours.

    Do you think that, when all other firearms are confiscated, they won’t take your precious black powder too?

    • William, read what I said. “I don’t have a problem with .50 BMG rifles either, even semi-auto ones,as long as they are sufficiently regulated – which, happily seems to be the case.”

      “Nuff said?

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