Dry Firing 001: The Shot Timer

Remember the Magnificent Seven? How the gunmen rode into town and trained the villagers how to fight the bad guys? Well, I'm a villager. This is my training sequence.
Remember the Magnificent Seven? How the gunmen rode into town and trained the villagers how to fight the bad guys? Well, I’m a villager. This is my training sequence.

I’ve talked a lot about dry firing. In the earlier days of Daddys-Gun.com I even wrote a few posts about it. They were bone simple, and if you are baffled about how to fit practice into your daily routine, it is possible. I did it.

I’ve been exposed to a handful of drills since I wrote about the Wall Drill. If you are more of a beginner than me, then you can use this as a blueprint. I’ll be including links to experts so that you can see how it’s done right. If you are experienced, think of this as one of those long training sequences, where the chubby, middle aged underdog manages to defy the odds and become a better shooter. People love training sequences.

Most of the drills  will require a shot timer to be done effectively. Shot timers prompt you when to draw, often with a beep or a robotic sounding command. Then they time how long it takes before your gun goes bang (or click, in this case.)

They often have a par function, which lets you program in an expectation. Ie, “I should be able to pull the trigger in two seconds.” Setting the par gives you a methodical way to raise the bar. Also, they should have a memory function. Or, you could just keep your pars and times written down in a notebook.

So far I haven’t seen a timer for less than $100. Thankfully, there is an app for it. Actually, there are lots of them.

 

The Free Shot Timer is available on for the iPhone 6 and other apple devices. You'll need a mic to make it work for dry firing.
The Free Shot Timer is available on for the iPhone 6 and other apple devices. You’ll need a mic to make it work for dry firing.

I downloaded the Free Shot Timer App last night, and deleted it after about five minutes. Then I realized that I need to buy a cheap microphone, so that the app could pick up the click. I’ll be picking one up in a day or two. We’ll see how it goes. If it sucks, remember. it’s free.

These are the drills that I will be practicing.

  • The Draw. I kind of touched on this in my last post. Now I’ll be looking at its dryfire counterpart.
  • The Turn and Draw. Like the draw, but you start with your back to the target.
  • The Strong Hand Draw. Here you are shooting with one hand. It is the foundation for the ever popular, dual wielding as seen on TV and in the movies. (Psyche!)
This is the free shot timer control panel. You can see it allows you adjust the par time.
This is the free shot timer control panel. You can see it allows you adjust the par time.
  • Support Hand from a 45 Degree Angle. Instead of drawing from a holster, you’re holding the gun in front of you at a 45… you know the rest.
  • Support Hand from Draw: Here you’ll draw your weapon with the strong hand and then switch to your non dominate hand.

Sam introduced me to them and they are part of a program geared towards IDPA competition. IDPA stands for the International Defensive Pistol Association. They were established way back in 96 as a way to let average shooters test their combat skills in simulated, real world situations. If you’re lucky, this is as close as you will ever get to a gun fight.

 

The Draw and Shoot Drill Part II: Going Beyond Accuracy

 

 

I’ve been working on accuracy for months. Dry firing in a small corner of my garage, after doing the dishes and walking the dog at night. I rarely hear about handguns being equated with meditation, but I’ve found that the acts of dry firing and draw and fire is as close as I’ve come to meditation in a martial art.

Photo courtesy of They Die By Dawn.
Photo courtesy of They Die By Dawn.

Last time I wrote about the results of all of that practice. Three disappointing attempts to shoot the hole left from the first shot, followed by a revelation, some trigger time with a Glock 17 that shot 22 cal bullets, and then victory.

That was the prelude.

The goal was to draw and shoot a target suspended five yards away. Again, we used a sheet of copy paper. Copy is roughly the size of both a man’s head and the chest cavity. If you can consistently hit it, you might be on your way to developing combat accuracy.

One note on combat accuracy. I had been so tuned into shooting that little dot, that much of my dray fire practice had been weighted more towards hitting the dot, and less towards the actual draw. The goal wasn’t to draw and shoot a dot the size of a bottle cap in less than three seconds. The goal was to draw and shoot a sheet of paper. Big difference.

The drill: Draw and fire on the target. This time we would go in stages. First, draw and fire one round in three seconds. Then two rounds, then three, and finally four rounds. As you can see, the whole drill took about a minute. As you can see, I was slow. I did, however, land every shot on the sheet of paper.

 

 

What Would Robert Williams Do? Words from the Man Who Inspired the Panthers

src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/7U3spArjhUA” width=”420″ height=”315″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen=”allowfullscreen”>
This is Robert Williams.

In the mid 50’s, Williams took the helm of the local NAACP chapter in Monroe NC. Economic reprisals and attacks from the KKK had strangled the membership of the organization to just six members. He made a pilgrimage from pool halls to street corners; reached out to local tenant farmers and old buddies from the military, and built their ranks from about one (him) to more than 300.

Williams also started an NRA chapter that came to be known as the Black Armed Guard. They protected the Freedom Riders in the early 60’s. They also protected themselves from nighttime attacks. In short, they did what people right now are whispering about doing.

It was just another good time Klan night, the high point of which would come when they dragged Dr. Perry (Williams’ NAACP vice president) across the state line, if they didn’t hang him or burn him first. But near Dr. Perry’s home their revelry was suddenly shattered by the sustained fire of scores of men who had been instructed not to kill anyone, if it weren’t necessary.

The firing was blistering, disciplined and frightening. The motorcade of about eighty cars, which had begun in a spirit of good fellowship, disintegrated into chaos, with panicky robed men fleeing in every direction.

Julian Mayfield, as quoted in The Making of Black Revolutionaries.

Dylann Roof after he was taken into custody.
Dylann Roof after he was taken into custody.

After the attack on Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church by Dylann Roof, I thought of Williams. Leaders and law enforcement struggled to find the right word for what had happened. Was it terrorism or a hate crime? Was he a politicized lone wolf or just a troubled, unstable young man?

And we wrung our hands and gnashed our teeth, trying to determine what to do next. On one Facebook thread, one officer within the NAACP suggested that he would rather sacrifice his life and protect everyone that he could, than ever use a gun.

He said, “While taking the high road is long and arduous and even deadly if you ask Dr. King, at the end of the day taking the high road is an investment into a more peaceful planet.”

It should be noted that Dr. King sought a concealed carry license early in his career but was turned down by local police. It should also be noted that for much of his career he was protected by the Deacons for Defense. Finally, it should be noted that while King abhorred the idea of guns as a political tool, he recognized their importance in armed self-defense. 

Others suggested that we should vote. Just vote…

Meanwhile, since Roof murdered Cynthia Hurd, 54; Susie Jackson, 87; Ethel Lance, 70; Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, 49; Hon. Rev. Clementa Pinckney, 41; Tywanza Sanders, 26; Rev. Daniel Simmons Sr., 74; Rev. Sharonda Singleton, 45; Myra Thompson, 59, six Black  churches burned to the ground in five Southern states. Although no suspects or motive have been announced, arson has been named as the cause of three of the fires so far.

Would vigilant men with guns have been able to stop Roof? There is no way to answer that question conclusively, but it might have given them a fighting chance.

I started Daddys-Gun to demonstrate that Black people have a long and illustrious history of fighting the good fight. I didn’t expect that our nation would be faced with challenges that so closely echoed the battles that we endured fifty or sixty years ago. But when I heard about Roof, and then the burning churches, my mind went to Bombingham Al, and the little girls lost in the 16th Street Baptist Church.

I’m not going to tell anyone what to do. I suspect that will change from person to person, and congregation to congregation. I suspect, also, that there are already a large number of congregations that have quietly decided to arm themselves.

This is Bishop Ron Gibson from Preachers of LA. Gibson serves at Life Church of God in Christ. He is often armed.
This is Bishop Ron Gibson from Preachers of LA. Gibson serves at Life Church of God in Christ. He is often armed. How many others just like them, are quietly armed behind the pulpit? Photo Courtesy of Entertainment Tonight

I’m saying, simply, that history has provided us with a blueprint in men like Robert Williams and the Deacons for defense. Even if you don’t choose to follow their path, you should know their stories.

Norcross Training Sessions: Keep Your Hand off the Trigger… Slow Down

Second shooting session at the Norcross Gun Range. This post I'll focus on accuracy. Next time I'll talk about draw and fire.
Second shooting session at the Norcross Gun Range. This post I’ll focus on accuracy. Next time I’ll talk about draw and fire. These were my last groups before progressing to draw and fire.

This is what progress looks like. I shot these earlier this week at the Norcross Gun Range.

My last session focused on a Black dot. It was my nemesis. I had to shoot it five times in a row before we would move on to draw and fire drills. I spent so much time shooting raggedy groups that instead of worrying about draw and fire, it was decided that I would worry about accuracy. Accuracy before speed became the mantra.

It wasn’t a total loss. I learned an important lesson about maintaining muscular tension in my chest, arms and hands, in order to control recoil. As an internal martial arts guy, that was an eye opener. I went home and worked on maintaining tension and developing a smooth trigger pull. That was over a month ago.

One of my first groups at five yards. Can you see the flinch? It's all I can see.
One of my first groups at five yards. Can you see the flinch? It’s all I can see.

This was one of my first groups after my return to the range. I had been bragging about how I would be able to shoot the black dot. Bragging about shooting a bottle cap size hole in a piece of paper at a range of about five yards? Yeah, well you have to start somewhere.

Sam said, “Slow down. You’re rushing it. Each trigger pull is a separate thing.”

This resonated. It sounded almost zen to me.

This was my second group. I was repeating a mantra as I shot. “Focus on the target…focus on the target…focus on the target…”

The group in the center marked "Sam" was Sam's group. Duh.  There in the middle you see my WTF moment, and below it are four more holes that should have been right on top of it. But it was one tight group.
The group in the center marked “Sam” was Sam’s group. Duh.
There in the middle you see my WTF moment, and below it are four more holes that should have been right on top of it. But it was one tight group.

It yielded a tight group, especially if you ignore the outlier hole. Thing is, that was the first hole. It was also supposed to be my point of aim. It seems as if I have a flinch. I unconsciously push the muzzle down as I pull the trigger in order to compensate for the recoil.

He pulled out a 22 cal Glock 17. “Do it again.” I shot to the left to get used to the diminished recoil, and then I took aim. I whispered my mantra, and I pulled the trigger…One… Two… Three… Four… Five… That was it.

We repeated it a couple more times with my S&W 9mm. He had to make sure that the groups weren’t flukes. The results weren’t flawless, but they were workable.

Monday I’ll post part two. It will be all about the draw and fire drill.

In the meantime…

Notes:

  • Shooting the Glock was an eye opener. I haven’t shot a Glock for years. Once I got my M&P 9mm, I just didn’t like the old Glock 17 that I bought back in the 90’s. In fact, I traded it to Sam for the lessons.
    As a result, I never got much of a chance to compare the trigger pulls of the Glock to the M&P. After all, the trigger pull is the biggest criticism of the M&P.
    Shooting them back to back I had my palm-to-head movement. That’s what they were talking about! On the M&P you don’t know when the trigger has been reset. I could feel it on the Glock.
    Do I want the first Gen back? Nope. If you can’t tell, I really dig these lessons. I also like the steel magazine and the thumb safety on my M&P. But I get it now.
  • Also, Sam had to correct me on my trigger discipline. “Take your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to shoot.”
    That’s not a big deal except for the fact that I didn’t realize that my finger was on the trigger. I tend to be very careful, almost overly so. After all, I have a thumb safety on my gun… But trigger discipline trumps almost everything else.
    Do better Chad.
  • I’ve seen M&P 22’s going for about $350, if my memory serves me. Honestly, I didn’t pay much attention. After all, what do I want with a 22? How about more practice time for less money.
    It won’t be my next purchase, but it is on my radar.
  • My homework? More dry firing, (I’ll be going into the specifics of it in the coming weeks) and range time. The only way to handle a flinch is to shoot until you’re used to shooting.

 

 

 

 

Legendary Lawman Bass Reeves coming to HBO.

Bass Reeves was credited with bringing  about 3000 men to justice. Now he is going to be the subject of an HBO movie.
Bass Reeves was credited with bringing about 3000 men to justice. Now he is going to be the subject of an HBO movie.

Bass Reeves, the guy some people called the real Django Unchained and others  said that inspired the Lone Ranger, is finally going to have his story told. Twice. And he’s about to make both Django and the Lone Rangers look like rank amateurs.

Reeves is one of those bigger than life stories that continues to percolate beneath the surface of the African experience. He escaped from his master during the civil war and then went west, straight into Indian territory, where he became a crack shot.

  • He learned to speak several tribal languages and gained an intimate knowledge of the territory.
  • He became an Deputy U.S. Marshall at a time when wearing a badge was not too different from pinning a target to your chest (especially as a Black man)
  • He used marksmanship, disguise and a Native American guide to bring 3000 outlaws to justice. 2,986 came in alive.
  • He served (and survived) as a Deputy US Marshall for 32 years, and although the brim of his hat, one button, and his horse’s bridle were destroyed by gunfire. If that isn’t close enough for you, his belt was shot in two.
  • Although Cowboy movies tend to depict their heroes with a gun on each hip, one tends to be kind of worthless. Try shooting with your non-dominate hand and you’ll see why. Reeves was ambidextrous, and just as deadly with his left hand as his right. He was so effective with a rifle that he was banned from participating in local turkey shoots.

Was he the real Django Unchained? Seeing as how the two existed in entirely different time periods and had almost nothing in common, probably not. Did he inspire the Lone Ranger? It’s possible – it is said that Reeves left silver coins as his calling card, which perhaps inspired the Ranger’s silver bullets.

bassreeves (1)But then again, just because Bass Reeves lived a life that encompassed every trait of bad-ass-dom that there ever was, doesn’t mean that every bad-ass fictitious character was based on him.

Doesn’t matter. If you’re one of those people who can only look up to a person once they have appeared on a screen, you have your new hero. He will soon be profiled on Legends and Lies, a Fox News series produced by Bill ORielly.

More importantly, Morgan Freeman, is producing an HBO mini-series about him. Written by John Sayles (Lone Star), and based on Art T. Burton’s biography Black Gun, Silver Star: The Life And Legend Of Frontier Marshal Bass Reeves, the series is a labor of love for Freeman that is more than 20 years in the making.

It will be a dream come true for Freeman, who calls himself a Western fanatic, but has thirsted for more Black characters since his childhood.

He said this of Bass Reeves project. “This is a black man in America’s legendary Western history who has been totally overlooked. Any chance I get to revisit historical moments of our country is important to me.”

The Bass Reeves miniseries joins another high-profile project in the works about our heroes at HBO. They are also doing a movie about Harriet Tubman, which will star Viola Davis.

The NAAGA Talks Law at Stoddards Gun Range

Last Saturday was the second meeting of the National African American Gun Association.

Samuel Hayes of Caliber Training Group talks law  and history at the second meeting of the NAAGA
Samuel Hayes of Caliber Training Group talks law and history at the second meeting of the NAAGA

There were about 20 people all together. It took place in room at Stoddards Gun Range in Midtown Atlanta, that looked a lot like a Starbucks, with the exception of a target set up on a tripod at the front of the room. Close to half of the attendees were women, including the founder, Philip Smith’s 15 year-old (close to 16) daughter, Tiana. More on her later.

While the first meeting focused on safety, this one featured Samuel Hayes of Caliber Training Group, who talked about gun laws in Georgia.

On discussing the differences between the NAAGA and the NRA, Sam said this. “We begin in the same place, and we occupy the same space, but that’s it. They aren’t going to acknowledge the ugly past of gun control… It was done so that we couldn’t protect ourselves.”

AR_elaine_riot
This is a 1919 headline from The Elaine Arkansas Gazette. Such headlines not only incited mob violence against Black people, but they also fueled efforts to disarm the Black community.

As proof he cited early headlines which ran throughout the South which spread rumors of race riots by local Black residents. Those stories were often run with almost no basis in truth, but became the inspiration for mob attacks against the Black communities, and the legislation to disarm them.

“[Before now], there was no organization out there for us.” Said one attendee. “We have a unique perspective and we need to galvanize around it.”

Sam then went on to discuss statute 16-3-21, which covers lawful use and carry of a weapon in the State of Georgia. Disparity in size, age and multiple attackers are all things that must be considered when considering lethal force.Like any other all, there is gray area.

Disparity of force, for example, will vary according to the defender. So, 15-year-old Tiana, might be justified to use deadly force against  a grown man attacking with his bare hands, while Sam, who is about 6ft, 280, might be expected to employ different tactics. Maybe.

As for defense of a third-party, which is also legal, Sam cautioned that unless they are a loved one or someone who you would trust with your life, you might be better off making yourself the best witness possible, than pulling out your gun.

“You have to be absolutely clear about who you are putting your life on the line for. It could be someone who is being arrested by undercover officers. It’s happened before. You have to know who you are dealing with.”

NAAGA founder Philip Smith with wife Gwen and daughter Tiana. They inspired me to bring my daughter soon.
NAAGA founder Philip Smith with wife Gwen and daughter Tiana. They inspired me to bring my daughter soon.

Back to Tiana, pictured here with her mother and father. She has shot a gun before. Her uncle, (I believe) allowed her to fire off some rounds at a family gathering in Oklahoma. Seeing her there inspired me to bring my daughter, who is 15 and entering the 10th grade.

  • Law is going to be a regular theme. Sam has promised to either do a longer seminar or spend some time at each meeting going over the particulars of Georgia gun laws.
  • There are currently 200 members nationwide, with 66 in Metro Atlanta and interest from people in Michigan and Chicago.
  • The goal is 1000 by next year. That seems doable to me.
  • The next meeting will be Friday June 5 at Stoddards.

 

 

Do We Need This Demonstration to Prove that Law Enforcement is Biased?

Daddys-Gun.com is a labor of love. My goal is to highlight the strength and resilience of my forefathers while showing a vibrant and pragmatic tradition of arms.
Help me spread the word by liking and sharing each post. I don’ t have an ad budget and a team of marketers, but I do have a community of like minds who believe, just like me, that we are powerful. We were, are and will always be warriors. 

The video above was shared with me by a Facebook friend. I began replying as a comment but I quickly realized that I had too much to say for a Facebook comment box.

First, the obvious. Is this a fair experiment? It is clear that the responding police are from different agencies. Are they even from the same jurisdictions?

I read someplace that the video actually depicted different events that took place states apart. If that’s true, then this was an experiment in editing, rather than race and open carry.

We have brothers and sisters living off of a steady diet of tear gas and pepper spray in Ferguson and Baltimore, just to secure the rights of unarmed Black men and women, to live for long enough to make it to custody. Meanwhile, the NRA has attempted to initiate laws in Texas that will make it explicitly illegal for officers to stop and frisk people who open carry.

It would have cleared things up a lot for me if the two dudes who introduced the video appeared again with the Black guy before he ventured out, alone, with the AR and his pregnant girlfriend.Without knowing exactly where the cops are responding from, and the laws in those jurisdictions, it is hard to see this as a one to one comparison.  (By the way, please don’t do any more potentially dangerous “experiments” with your pregnant girlfriend there.)

That said, I’m not a bit surprised that a Black man would be treated differently when carrying a rifle on his back. A lot of police see us as a threat regardless. Throw an AR on your back, and you run the risk of becoming a statistic very quickly. I get the point that they are trying to prove, and there is an abundance of evidence to back it up.

Demonstrators from the Dallas New Black Panther Party and the Huey P. Newton Gun Club, at an open carry demonstration.
Demonstrators from the Dallas New Black Panther Party and the Huey P. Newton Gun Club, at an open carry demonstration.

The New Black Panthers regularly do open carry demonstrations. So far, none of them have been arrested, to my knowledge. But there is a difference between going down the street with 20 fellow armed citizens, and walking down the street alone with a rifle on your back. The former is very clearly a demonstration. The latter could be construed as a bit lone gunmen-ish.

But, if the brother is openly carrying a firearm in a state that allows open carry, then those cops were straight up wrong. The police don’t get to decide the constitutional rights that we can exercise. They are there to enforce the law, and if he didn’t break it, there was no reason for them to show up.

You should know, I’m not a fan of open carry or the movement that surrounds it. From what I can tell, it basically comes down to the desire to exercise a right, simply because it is our right to exercise it. I’ve seen open carry demonstrations shut down Starbucks and in one case, a demonstrator marched around an elementary school despite the fact that the administration had to lock the school down.

Still, I admire their hustle. We have brothers and sisters living off of a steady diet of tear gas and pepper spray in Ferguson and Baltimore, just to secure the rights of unarmed Black men and women, to live for long enough to make it to custody. Meanwhile, the NRA has attempted to initiate laws in Texas that will make it explicitly illegal for officers to stop and frisk people who open carry.

Let that sink in.

Stop and frisk means that this young man might end up spread eagle on the ground, with or without an AR on his back.
Stop and frisk means that this young man might end up spread eagle on the ground, with or without an AR on his back.

 

In Philly, cops can lawfully stop and frisk you even if you are just eating a slice of pizza on your front steps, but soon in Texas, you will be able to carry an AR and they will have to look the other way?

How about we make that into a video. A guy open carrying at a 7-11 while the police drag a guy off of his front porch, saying, “I just want to talk to you…”

 

The One Thing You Should Ignore if you Want to be Average

Daddys-Gun.com is a labor of love. My goal is to highlight the strength and resilience of my forefathers while showing a vibrant and pragmatic tradition of arms.

Help me spread the word by liking and sharing each post. I don’ t have an ad budget and a team of marketers, but I do have a community of like minds who believe, just like me, that we are powerful. We were, are and will always be warriors. 

First find an instructor, then practice. It isn't enough just to own a gun
First find an instructor, then practice. It isn’t enough just to own a gun

Most gun owners are average. Average means they buy a gun, go shooting once a year and it spends the rest of its sad life in the bottom of a dresser drawer.

The average shooter thinks that a benevolent god steadies the hand of the good guy. How else do you explain why the good guy always lands a head shot while the bad guys shoot worse in inverse proportion to their numbers?

Maximus Averagus gently guides his desciples’ bullets as they fly from improperly gripped guns. Maximus Averagus also grants them unlimited ammunition, and steadies their hands.

Don’t bow down to Maximus Averagus. He is a fickle God, more beholden to movie scripts than real life. He won’t cloud the bad guys’ vision, and he won’t change your magazine when you run out of cheap, average bullets.

Learn, then practice. In that order.

It took 15 minutes for me to find out how to effectively grip a handgun, acquire the sight picture and then shoot without flinching. Another 15 minutes later, I learned not to look around the side of the gun at the target after each shot.

In real life, bad guys don't always miss, and good guys run out of ammo. Buying a gun is just the first step. Seek instruction and then practice.
In real life, bad guys don’t always miss, and good guys run out of ammo. Buying a gun is just the first step. Seek instruction and then practice.

I practice almost every night, and I still have to remind myself to grip my gun properly. I analyze my trigger pull by dry firing a couple of inches from the wall of my garage. I’m still working on it. I think I’ll be working on it for a long time before it become reflexive.

That’s the goal. I’m not a target shooter. I’m practicing for combat. And if it isn’t reflexive, then it’s just not going to happen under stress.

Learn, then practice. Take a class. Regard it is part of the cost of the gun, just like the holster and bullets. Learn the laws. Or keep praying to Maximus Averagus while your gun collects dust in the bottom of your sock drawer.

The average shooter hopes that he can protect his family. You want to be the guy who knows that he can.

Samuel Hayes of Caliber Training Group is offering a class this weekend in the fundamentals of pistol craft. He’s teaching everything that I wish I had learned back when I bought my first gun. The skills that, once mastered, will raise you above the average.

This is a closed course, but you should check it out. Go to his site, then call and see if you can sneak in.

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes Black Men Stand their Ground Too

The video below shows Jehrardd Williams, a 28-year-old Fort Myers man, who was the victim of a racist attack in Lee County last year. You won’t see or hear his drunk attackers hurling racial slurs at the Hispanic man sitting next to him at the counter of the Waffle House, or at couple who entered the restaurant at the same time.

It doesn’t show the Waffle House staff ejecting them. But it does show a man throwing a wild sucker punch after Williams declined a peace-offering handshake.

The shirtless man who ran in like Feral Wolverine was named Dakota Fields. Williams, who is licensed to carry a concealed firearm, shot him three times.

Fields died later in a car crash as his crew fled the scene. It’s unclear if it was the crash or the gunshots that killed him.

Curiously, although the video clearly shows a potentially deadly situation that was rapidly escalating, some of the early accounts painted Williams as the aggressor. One witness described Williams as spook and nigger in the police reports.

Another said that Williams had refused to pay his bill. That was false.

And one waitress said that she “knew that Williams was a drug dealer.” I should point out, she doesn’t then go on to describe detailed encounters with Williams when she actually witnessed Williams dealing drugs. This was just a hunch, but one that she was so certain of that she decided to include it in the police record.

Then there was the woman who said that Williams had shoved one of his attackers. This never happened. Had it been admitted in court, though, it could easily been the difference between him being acquitted on the grounds of self-defense, and going to jail for manslaughter.

Though many of the staff corroborated Williams account of the event, enough contradicted it, either out of hatred, racism or misinformation, to put him in prison, if it weren’t for the camera. The video saved him.

I’ve heard dozens of times that Stand Your Ground laws only work if you are a White man standing your ground against a perceived Black threat.  Witness these two men. Each one was the subject of a no knock raid. Each took shots at the intruders only to realize that they were police.

Marvin Louis Gay killed a police officer when they invaded his home serving a no knock warrant. Now he awaits trial where he will face the death penalty.
Marvin Louis Gay killed a police officer when they invaded his home serving a no knock warrant. Now he awaits trial where he will face the death penalty.

About a year ago police in Kileen Tx. obtained the warrant  to invade Marvin Louis Gay’s home after an informant said that his house was full of cocaine. They entered a window at 5:30am and he opened fire, killing one officer and injuring one more. Police did find a marijuana grinder and a handgun, but no cocaine. The DA, however, is seeking the death penalty.

 

Henry Goedrich Magee killed a police officer who was serving a no knock raid. He said he feared for his life and the lives of his pregnant wife and their unborn child. A grand jury declined to file charges.
Henry Goedrich Magee killed a police officer who was serving a no knock raid. He said he feared for his life and the lives of his pregnant wife and their unborn child. A grand jury declined to file charges.

Compare this to Henry Goedrich Magee, also of Texas. Police invaded his home based on information that he was dealing marijuana. He shot and killed Sgt. Adam Sowders, saying that he feared for his life, and the life of his pregnant wife. A grand jury refused to indict and within months he was exonerated.

You can read more about each case here.

At any rate, my friends are clearly justified in believing that Stand Your Ground isn’t a privilege that is afforded Black handgun owners. A lot of times it isn’t. Sometimes, however, it is.

Maybe Stand Your Ground isn’t the problem. After all, it’s just a law. The problem comes in when it is interpreted through a layer of stereotypes, misinformation and outright racism. That’s the only reason I can think that Gay is defending his life in the Texas justice system while Magee is home with his newborn daughter.

And it’s the only reason I can think of, that some of the men and women at the Fort Myers Waffle House could watch Williams and several others undergo a barrage of racist taunts and still think that he was at fault for having the self-respect to defend himself.

 

Today, May 11, 2015, is Richard Overton’s 109th birthday.

Overton survived World War II, Jim Crow and countless other hardships, and did so while smoking cigars and drinking whisky in a house full of firearms. Suck-it Dr. Oz.  I want to be like him when I grow up.

Ben Philippi from Guns.com visited him recently to talk to him about his time in WWII and the guns that he keeps to make sure that foul play doesn’t rob him of his 110th birthday. Enjoy.