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January 19, 2013

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Jane Northrop is writing an article on this for the Tribune. It should be in next week's paper. Better late than never!

Thanks, Clark. A couple of San Francisco TV stations covered the event, as did Pacifica Riptide, but there was a noticeable lack of coverage in print media, including our hometown newspaper.

As far as I can tell, this event received abysmal media coverage. The Pacifica Tribune did not mention this gun rally, nor did the San Mateo County Times. I don't claim to be a crowd counter, but I think several hundred gun advocates were present. Apparently, KSFO talk radio beat the publicity drums to get the people out.
I think this was a significant event that warranted thorough reporting
and reasonable discussion.
Newspapers are regarded as recorders of significant events. Why did they pass on this event?
Shouldn't we pull our heads out of the sand and acknowledge what is happening in Pacifica? Robine Runneals and 30 other people did by protesting.

This is hard for me to admit, but I agree 100 percent with Ian's first sentence below.

I own some family heirlooms, which if fired would kill the operator, but I enjoy the pistol range. It's like any other individual sport such as pool or golf. But I feel the NRA should lose its charter as a not-for-profit advocacy group for the reasons (and I cringe admitting this again) Ian has brought up below.

Thank you, Pacificans, those who showed up to create a peaceful presence in response to the gun rally on Saturday. You made a big impact on the scene. I was happy to stand with all of you. I hope you will contact Senators Feinstein and Boxer and Congresswoman Speier and the White House to show your support for strict gun control laws. Let's do all we can to move forward with this. Don't just leave it up to the gun lobby to pressure for its agenda. Thanks again and peace always!

It comes as no surprise that NRA gun rights supporters and gun control advocates would choose to hold their face-off in Pacifica -- a city long known as the intersection of mass murder and poor mental health care.

The NRA doesn't represent gun owners, or even its own members, it represents gun manufacturers and sellers, period. The overwhelming majority of NRA members support closing the background check loopholes that exempt 40% of gun sales. Despite the position of its own members, the NRA strongly opposes the common sense closing of these loopholes.

Pacifica palindrome lovers held signs urging NRA gun rights supporters to keep their pistols tight in their holsters: "SNUG GUNS!"

Sorry I could not attend. Not enough hours in the day. Anyway, I expect that what most of the gun owners were protesting was the straw man built and presented by the firearms industry and its primary lobbyist, the NRA. I don't like that straw man either. He gonna take away your guns and then come hurt your family in the night. The only trouble with all that is that there isn't one. Nobody, that I know of is advocating taking away everybody's guns. If you need a magazine with 22 rounds to hunt, that would indicate that you are such a bad shot that you should probably consider croquet or lawn bowling, and have done with firearms altogether. Anyway, that is my take on it.

I went to go get some Tylenol and found this pro/anti rally. I stood with the NRA supporters for a bit and then took my Tylenol.

Thank you to the 30 peaceful Pacificans who came to the gun rally today. Our peaceful presence in support of changes to protect our children and our communities from gun violence was successful. President Obama's plan says nothing about banning all guns. Yet the pro-gun side at the rally today was convinced it will. What's draconian to the NRA could appear long overdue to the rest of the country. Please read the plan for yourself at the White House main web page under popular topics, see Reducing Gun Violence. By the way, the pro-gun side looked smaller to me, more like 150.

—Peace

As readers may have learned by now, Ocean Yoga is next door to City Arms (only in Pacifica!). When I left the studio at noon, I joined the pro-peace crowd for a while. This was the first rally I ever attended in a shopping mall! There were a few hundred gun rights activists from all over the Bay Area present, including families with kids. There were 30 of us on the peace side (I counted), but the interactions between the two groups was low-key and the whole affair pretty civil after all.

One highlight was the Tea Party speaker (sorry, I didn’t catch her name) who did her best to turn it into a Republican Party convention. Her pledge to end “Obamacare” elicited tepid applause. When she tried to get the crowd going with a chant of “No more years,” it petered out after a moment.

After the rally, the peace folks were approached by a few of the nice young men who had taken pains to memorize their NRA talking points. These were the first gun nerds of my acquaintance, and they were great! They said things like, “Let me ask you a question. Do you know the difference between an automatic and a semi-automatic weapon?” Answer: they are both guns. Or something like that. Joking aside, they seemed super sincere and well meaning.

Not everyone was as well intentioned. One of my favorite moments was a random lady, shouting to no one in particular, “Keep talking, brainless fools. I’m getting my guns while I can.” However, the flavor of this particular event was that she was just shouting into the wind. No one joined in. She got no response. After one more attempt, she ambled away.

Here are some photos you may post as you wish:
http://www.dietrologia.com/photos/NRA1.JPG

http://www.dietrologia.com/photos/NRA2.JPG

http://www.dietrologia.com/photos/NRA3.JPG

300 pro-gun citizens assembled to protest draconian gun restriction and to defend our constitutional rights. About 10 anti-gun rights activists assembled across the square.

I was attending a yoga workshop at the studio right next door at the same time as the rally. I had to park some distance away (the yoga studio let us know in advance so we could plan ahead). There were a lot of people attending the rally -- everyone was respectful. Some cheering & some passionate speeches, but they were not disruptive. There was a very large police presence, but really no tension.

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