Social media posts could lead to losing your guns, under proposed PA law supported by state’s leftist governor
The following contains editorial content which is the opinion of the writer.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized- The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
No person…[shall be]…deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law…- The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial…and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.- The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Read the above three amendments to the constitution closely. They are among the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution, each considered so important and vital that they are included in the Bill of Rights.
Yet in states across the country and in the United States Senate, legislation is being considered that stomps on all three of those rights under the guise of so-called “Red Flag” laws.
One such proposal is being floated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and has the undying support of leftist lunatic Gov. Tom Wolf. In fact, Wolf posted an infographic which shows exactly how much of an attack on our constitutional rights such proposals are.
In the infographic, it talks about how posting pictures of guns with “undefined” cryptic messages would start a chain of events which would lead to a fictional character named “Randy” having his firearms confiscated not based on probable cause but on a complaint from a random citizen named “Jane.”
How it works is as follows:
- Jane’s social media contact, Randy, posts photos of guns & cryptic messages [emphasis added]
- Jane calls the police to report the posts
- The police petition in court [based on hearsay] to temporarily remove Randy’s guns
- Police provide evidence that Randy is [allegedly] a danger to himself/others
- The court agrees to a temporary removal of Randy’s weapons [emphasis added]
Red flag laws allow us to take action when someone who has a gun begins to act erratically.
Red flag laws still require due process, and any removal of weapons is temporary. pic.twitter.com/IVPHgbrvhD
— Governor Tom Wolf (@GovernorTomWolf) June 16, 2022
Wolf of course thinks this scenario is simply peachy.
“Red flag laws allow us to take action when someone who has a gun begins to act erratically,” Wolf posted, which could include posts on social media.
“Red flag laws still require due process, and any removal of weapons is temporary,” Wolf continued.
Claiming “due process” is included in red flag laws is a crock. In such scenarios, the accused must petition the court after his guns are confiscated and you can bet that once the government has guns in their possession, it will be difficult if not impossible to get them back. So yes, “officially” there is a “due process” procedure and “officially” it is only “temporary.”
Wolf also doesn’t address the fact that in a number of the mass shootings that is spurring the hysteria to “do something,” law enforcement…in particular federal law enforcement…was in touch with the shooters, or at least was aware of some “issues.”
Wolf is unhappy that Republicans in Pennsylvania’s House Judiciary Committee refused to rubber stamp the bills, which he referred to as “commonsense” bills addressing gun violence in the state.
It is unknown if Wolf has been equally as critical of Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner, who has turned the city’s district attorney’s office into a revolving door of criminals being let out with nary a slap on the wrist. If anything is feeding the state’s gun violence issues it’s the ineptitude of Krasner.
Instead, Republicans referred the bills to another committee, which sent the feckless Wolf into a hissy fit.
“Shameful. That’s what I’d call today’s action—or rather, inaction,” Wolf said.
“Lawmakers have an opportunity to take commonsense steps, which the majority of Pennsylvanians support. Instead of taking a vote to advance these bills, they are just delaying debate on this legislation. Gun violence won’t delay. Every day the Republicans stall, more people are at risk.
“This isn’t just a ‘Philadelphia’ issue. This is a statewide and national issue that must be addressed. It’s reprehensible that Republicans continue to stall when our own constituents want this addressed right now,” Wolf complained.
“I urge Republicans to stop these tactics and take action.”
Last week, Wolf sent a letter to members of the committee calling for them to approve the four bills as they are.
“I have committed to doing everything I can to bring peace to our communities, but ultimately, sensible gun laws save lives, and the General Assembly must act to make statutory changes,” Wolf wrote. “Communities across the commonwealth—urban, suburban, and rural—have experienced the horror of gun violence. We must do our part to prevent these tragedies.”
Yes, because clearly, gang-bangers in Philadelphia will obey gun laws just like they obey laws against things like say, murder.
Wolf’s letter alleged the proposed bills are not intended to take guns away from law-abiding citizens, however, doesn’t explain how social media posts with pictures of guns, such as shown in the infographic, could be illegal.
“If the aforementioned bills became law, they would not infringe upon the rights of law-abiding gun owners. This is not about taking guns away from those who lawfully own and operate them, it’s about ensuring guns are appropriately locked up and kept out of the hands of those who are more apt to cause harm.”
Wolf concluded, “We can no longer afford to do nothing. Every day that we delay, lives are on the line. Pennsylvanians are counting on you.”
The fact of the matter is, the laws Wolf is referring to will have zero effect on the overall crime rate in the Keystone State. People will continue to die on the streets of Philadelphia and the only ones being punished are lawful gun owners. Period.
For a previous red flag post by our esteemed writer Mitch McKinley, we invite you to:
BALTIMORE, MD – In the wake of the horrific shooting in Buffalo, New York last weekend, many people are asking questions. Questions like:
Could this have been prevented?
In an attempt to answer that last one, CBS Baltimore’s Mike Hellgren made the approach from the angle of red flag laws.
As he pointed out, numerous states, like Maryland, have implemented red flag laws that allow law enforcement to remove legally owned guns from individuals that are deemed to be threats to themselves and others. These Extreme Risk Protection Orders also make it difficult for some people to acquire weapons.
And all of that for the low, low price of violating the 5th amendment and denying these citizens the right to due process.
According to Cornell Law School:
“The [due process] clause promises that before depriving a citizen of life, liberty or property, government must follow fair procedures. Thus, it is not always enough for the government just to act in accordance with whatever law there may happen to be.
Citizens may also be entitled to have the government observe or offer fair procedures, whether or not those procedures have been provided for in the law on the basis of which it is acting. Action denying the process that is “due” would be unconstitutional.”
So, constitutionally speaking, red flag laws must follow either substantive or procedural due process. They are not to be executed on a whim or an opinion, without probable cause or evidence.
But that is exactly what laws like those in Maryland do. The circumvent the Constitution in the name of safety.
Those impacted by the laws are not allowed to defend themselves and go through an investigative process. They are not allowed to face their accuser. They simply have the government infringe on the only Constitutionally protected right that states that the government shall not infringe on.
The man who carried out the heinous act of killing 10 people in a Buffalo supermarket in what is believed to be a racially motivated act, was taken into custody last year after he threatened to shoot up his school. He went through a mental evaluation.
And yet, he was cleared in the system to be able to legally purchase the weapon he used in the mass slaying.
“This defendant had been interviewed by a mental health professional and professional who deemed him to be not dangerous or not at risk,” Broome County District Attorney Michael Korchak said. “He was released to the custody of his parents and returned home. He was actually cleared and went back to school and participated in his high school graduation.”
As a result of the actions the shooter carried out, Governor Kathy Hochul is now requiring state police to file an “extreme risk” order of protection when they encounter anyone they believe to be a risk to themselves or others. So much for that whole due process thing.
So, through this all, there are many who believe that the issue here is how this individual carried out his devious plan. They are focusing on the tools rather than the mindset and ideology behind such an act.
If this young man did what he did for the reasons that are being reported, he is a hate-filled and depraved individual. His hatred would have fueled him to do something, regardless of the tools available.
If he were not allowed to purchase or possess guns, he may have obtained them illegally. He could have driven a car into a crowd. He could have used a knife or created an explosive device. The means and the methods are simply that, means and methods.
For someone who is entrenched in such a hateful core belief, it is the end result that matters, the tools are simply a means to an end.
If we want to discuss the best ways to eradicate hateful ideologies, let’s have that conversation. But let’s have it from a realistic standpoint. Most of us agree that this world would be a better place of racism didn’t exist, in any form or from any direction.
We cannot simply listen to the Biden administration of the Southern Poverty Law Center, who both claim that they biggest threat to our way of life domestically is white supremacist groups.
This is, of course, coming from two groups that still believe that Antifa is not an actual thing, and that labeling it as hate group or extremist group is dangerous and threatens civil liberties.
You know, burning down buildings, violently attacking police, shining lasers in the eyes of law enforcement and vandalizing homes and businesses owned by the very community members that they claim to be standing up for, all while calling it peaceful protests.
They both stand behind the notion that doing such a thing makes no sense.
SPLC asserts that while Antifa may resort to “skirmishes and property crimes, their actions to not rise to the level of “lethal violence” often seen from far-right groups. Here is an excerpt from a 2020 article published on their website as it relates to race-based grassroots organizations like BLM.
“…the FBI identified a category called ‘Black Identity Extremists’ as a threat to law enforcement, specifically in response to police brutality against African Americans. The euphemism can be understood as an attempt to criminalize a broad set of organizations and grassroots movements advocating for the human rights and civil liberties of black people — most notably Black Lives Matter.
Such designations are used to instill fear, discredit legitimate protests and serve as justification for surveillance and the further use of militarized force against citizens by police. The communities that are already overpoliced and have a disproportionate number of victims of officer misconduct suffer the most from the expansion of federal terrorism powers.”
Have they printed retractions or edits in the nearly two years since this was written?
Of course not. Yet, only 6 days after it was written, Antifa members created an autonomous zone in Seattle. The made it unsafe for law enforcement to be in the area, even chasing them from a local precinct building.
They interfered with emergency services when they responded to call for assistance due to injuries in the area. They repeatedly attacked people who disagreed with their beliefs and actions. People were killed.
They even extorted local residence and business owners, charging them to receive protection for them very same people who were providing the protection.
Yet, SPLC would have you believe that the only real domestic terrorists in the country are all white supremacists. Categorizing any other group as such is purely a political move by the right.
But what would you expect from a group that literally says on their website:
“Extremists in the U.S. come in many different forms – white nationalists, anti-LGBTQ zealots, racist skinheads, neo-Confederates and more.”
Following that link, we find that they expand the list further, creating the following categories:
Ku Klux Klan, Neo-Nazi, White Nationalist, Racist Skinhead, Christian Identity, Neo-Confederate, Anti-Immigrant, Anti-LGBTQ and Anti-Muslim.
Why do they no longer list groups as Black Separatist?
Buckle up for the answer.
“In pursuit of a more accurate and more just hate map, the Intelligence Project (IP) collapsed the Black Separatist listing. We will still monitor these groups, but we will be transferring them to other hate ideologies, including antisemitism, that better describe the harm they inflict.
This comes after extensive consultation with internal and external experts. A change in the way the map is structured will better capture the power dynamics endemic to white supremacy. Black separatist groups are listed on the SPLC’s hate map because they propagate antisemitic, anti-LGBTQ and male supremacist views, not because they oppose a white supremacist power structure.”
The italics were added to highlight certain aspects of the statement.
You read that right. They wanted the map to be more just and more accurate. So, instead of providing assistance in fighting these ideologies, they just arbitrarily decided to remove groups for the sake of being fair and just.
Yet on their own website, they list the New Black Panther Party for Self Defense as “a bigoted, anti-white, antisemitic Black Nationalist group.”
So SPLC, which is it?
The reality is, the SPLC is pushing a very specific narrative.
Yet through it all, millions of Americans are realizing that their race narrative and bigoted ideology has no place in our world.
Buffalo shooter described himself as left-wing and trashed Conservatism, chose location in part because of strict gun control
BUFFALO, NY — The suspect in the gruesome shooting of victims at a supermarket in Buffalo allegedly wrote a manifesto that outlined three key reasons for targeting the city.
The shooting suspect, Payton Gendron, 18, of Conklin, New York, also appeared to mimic the horrific acts of previous mass shooters.
The MSM lying again.
In reality, Payton Gendron is a self-proclaimed atheist who denounced conservatism, Christianity and Fox News in his 180-page manifesto Buffalo Suspect’s Manifesto Revealed: 5 Statements Proving He Wasn’t a Christian Conservative https://t.co/ZvrojJEP0O
— Elizabeth Salvatore (@ElizabethS7) May 16, 2022
Gendron, who is white, wore body armor and a helmet with a camera attached. He is suspected of shooting 13 people at the Tops Friendly Market, which is located in a predominantly black neighborhood in Buffalo.
“Payton S. Gendron, 18, of Broome County, was arraigned before Buffalo City Court Judge Craig Hannah on a first-degree murder charge. If found guilty, he faces a life sentence in prison without the possibility of parole.”
In his manifesto, he had stated he would plead guilty. pic.twitter.com/PDvvXeWrKS
— Jimmy Simmons (@ArticulateTHGHT) May 15, 2022
Eleven of the victims were black, and two were white. Of the 10 who died, all were black.
The teen suspect reportedly used an illegally modified rifle while livestreaming his attack on the gaming platform Twitch, which is owned by Amazon.
Gendron’s manifesto is reportedly 180 pages long and indicates that he chose Buffalo for three primary reasons.
Where is the source this came from him? It’s still awful that he killed people, just wondering how we can prove he said these things. Thanks!
— Peter Griffin Never Broke Again (@PeterGriffNBA) May 15, 2022
The Epoch Times reported:
“In the alleged manifesto, the author appears to claim that he chose Buffalo because of the strict gun control laws, because it has a high ‘black population percentage,’ and because it ‘isn’t that far away’ from where he had lived.”
The Epoch Times couldn’t confirm whether the manifesto was written by Gendron, but has contacted Erie County District Attorney John Flynn’s office for comment.
The Epoch Times further reported that the manifesto allegedly stated that New York “has heavy gun laws” and that it would ease the suspect if he “knew that any legally armed civilian was limited to 10 round magazines or cucked firearms.”
“(REDACTED) has the highest black population percentage (zip code *****) and isn’t
that far away. Plus NY has heavy gun laws so it would ease me if I knew that any legally armed
civilian was limited to 10 round magazines or cucked firearms.”— l by Payton Gendron in his manifesto
— nasty (@nastypilled) May 15, 2022
New York’s laws restrict magazines to only 10 rounds and laws that limit the purchase of certain types of semi-automatic rifles. New York state residents also need to obtain a permit, which can make it take months if not years, to buy a pistol under the provisions of the SAFE Act, according to The Epoch Times’ report.
NATO is arming and training neo-Nazis in Ukraine’s white-supremacist Azov movement, who use the same fascist symbols as the terrorist mass shooter in Buffalo, New York https://t.co/5gYgmU8PFo
— Benjamin Norton (@BenjaminNorton) May 15, 2022
The author of the manifesto allegedly asked rhetorically:
“Won’t your attack result in calls for the removal of gun rights in the United States?”
The author then confirms “yes” and says it is part of an unspecified plan:
“Yes, that is the plan all along, you said you would fight to protect your rights and the constitution, soon will come the time.
“NY has cucked gun laws. Assault style weapons and high capacity magazines are illegal for civilians to own, thus lowering threats from law-abiding civilians.”
Copies of Payton Gendron’s manifesto have been scrubbed from the internet. Supposedly this is to prevent others from being influenced by it. I think the real reason is because he used Azov symbolism. pic.twitter.com/u4B97nRnAu
— Louis (@louisvtweets) May 16, 2022
The suspect also used a visual platform popular with gamers.
Twitch is a site where people can livestream video games while they are playing. Tips and commentary are usually shared while the audience watches.
Associated Press noted:
“The [Twitch] platform has boomed in popularity over the past few years. It played a key role in boosting the spread of ‘esports,’ or competitive video gaming. Popular Twitch gamers can have millions of followers. The platform itself has more than 100 million monthly users.”
Gendron’s livestreamed video was reportedly removed quickly after it was broadcast.
Associated Press reported:
“A Twitch spokesperson said it removed the video in less than two minutes.
“That’s considerably faster than the 17 minutes Facebook needed to take down a similar video streamed by a self-described white supremacist who killed 51 people in two New Zealand mosques in 2019.”
-That he killed 2 white people, including the 1st person he shot
— Joe Has Dementia (@RokerGlasses) May 16, 2022
There appears to be an unsettling connection between shooting massacres and social media platforms.
In March of 2019, an Australian, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, now in his 30s, livestreamed his shooting of people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. He chose Facebook as his streaming platform and seemed to carefully model his attack for the internet-hooked generation. Tarrant wrote a 74-page manifesto that espoused extremist and racist views that sometimes contradicted themselves, Associated Press reported. 51 people died.
Tarrant livestreamed his massacre for at least 17 minutes, shouted out a popular meme slogan and published a long, rambling manifesto containing inside jokes geared for those into underground internet culture, Associated Press reported.
Then only months later, another shooting suspect, Stephan Balliet, who was in his 20s, allegedly launched a deadly attack at a synagogue in Halle, Germany, and livestreamed it on Twitch in October of 2019.
A security guard confronted alleged Buffalo supermarket shooter Payton Gendron during an apparent reconnaissance trip two months ago.https://t.co/ABIaFa5H0R
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) May 17, 2022
Streaming live with a camera mounted on his helmet, the suspect pushed on the doors of the synagogue, fired several shots at a lock on the door, stuck an explosive in a door jamb and lit it, but could not get in. According to a CNN report, 51 people were barricaded inside.
Since the suspect could not gain access into the synagogue, he allegedly filmed himself killing a woman outside Halle’s synagogue and then a patron at a nearby kebab shop.
During the assault, the suspect reportedly ranted about Jews, feminism and immigration, according to a report by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
Like Tarrant and Balliet, Gendron livestreamed his massacre of people. In addition, Gendron allegedly wrote a manifesto, like Tarrant did, that mentioned a racist “great replacement” theory to justify attacking people of other races and cultures.
Kin of alleged Buffalo shooter Payton Gendron roll out COVID defense slaughter https://t.co/ghMG1pGD0T pic.twitter.com/9ZqwOJLgxY
— New York Post (@nypost) May 16, 2022
Gendron’s manifesto reportedly mentioned that all non-white and non-Christian people should leave the country, Associated Press reported.
In a separate report, Jewish Telegraphic Agency noted:
“An online manifesto attributed to Payton Gendron, 18, explains that the attack was spurred by the theory that a tide of immigrants is crowding out white populations in western countries. The manifesto also says that Jews are the real problem but that ‘they can be dealt with in time.’
“The Tops supermarket, located just a few miles from the Canadian border, was chosen because it is in an area with many black residents, the manifesto says. Eleven of the 13 people shot there were black, local law enforcement officials said.
“Law enforcement authorities are working to verify that the manifesto was written by Gendron, who was arrested at the scene and later charged with first-degree murder. The U.S. Justice Department is investigating the shooting as ‘a hate crime and an act of racially motivated violent extremism,’ Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement.”
Just learned of the #Buffalo shooting. My first response is to track down parent data. His: Married, upper-middle class, both engineers. Question: what is it about American life where parents don’t know their children’s values (like they think they do)? https://t.co/v98oKjo7tH
— Anthony B. Bradley, PhD (@drantbradley) May 15, 2022
Associated Press reported that Gendron’s livestream video spread quickly to other platforms, which were slow in removing the violent content:
“But versions of the Buffalo shooting video still quickly spread to other platforms, and they haven’t always disappeared quickly.
“In April, Twitter enacted a new policy on ‘perpetrators of violent attacks’ to remove accounts maintained by ‘individual perpetrators of terrorist, violent extremist, or mass violent attacks,’ along with tweets and other material produced by perpetrators of such attacks.
“On Sunday, though, clips of the video were still circulating on the platform.”
For example, one video clip on Twitter reportedly showed the gunman moving through the supermarket and firing upon people. Associated Press reported that video remained on Twitter for several hours.
Azov removed the sun from its official symbol in August 2015 (after lawmakers banned Nazi symbols), but the image still has its admirers in Ukraine’s armed forces, as a recent scandal on NATO’s Twitter page demonstrated. https://t.co/dzBRyyQSXM
— Kevin Rothrock (@KevinRothrock) May 15, 2022
On Sunday, Twitter said in a statement it was working to remove material related to the shooting that violates its rules:
“We believe the hateful and discriminatory views promoted in content produced by perpetrators are harmful for society and that their dissemination should be limited in order to prevent perpetrators from publicizing their message.”
However, Twitter’s actions did not appear consistent. Associated Press reported:
“But the company added that when people share media to condemn it or provide context, sharing videos and other material from the shooter may not be a rules violation. In these cases, Twitter said it covers images or videos with a ‘sensitive material’ cover that users have to click through in order to view them.
“But later Sunday, Twitter changed course on how it was treating material related to the shooting. In a subsequent emailed statement, the company said it is ‘removing videos and media related to the incident’ and ‘may remove’ tweets disseminating the shooter’s writings. Earlier, the company’s statement said it ‘may’ remove material produced by perpetrators.”
New York’s Gov. Kathy Hochul said social media companies must be more careful in monitoring what happens on their own platforms and said the livestream should have been removed “within a second.”
On Sunday, Hochul told ABC’s “This Week” that social media companies are responsible for allowing the growth of “white hope” racist ideas and then allowing people to share them:
“The CEOs of those companies need to be held accountable and assure all of us that they’re taking every step humanly possible to be able to monitor this information.
“How these depraved ideas are fermenting on social media – it’s spreading like a virus now.”
Hochul also noted:
“People are sharing these ideas. They’re sharing videos of other attacks. And they’re all copycat. They all want to be the next great white hope that’s going to inspire the next attack.”
A deep Daily Mail dive into his family and previous (school) threat of violence…https://t.co/6xy6Uo19WI pic.twitter.com/MvdZJOqzkc
— Jimmy Simmons (@ArticulateTHGHT) May 15, 2022
Another disturbing aspect is that Gendron allegedly had made previous threatening comments that brought police to his high school last spring.
However, officials said Gendron was never charged with a crime and had no further contact with law enforcement after his release from a hospital.
According to a report by Breitbart:
“The revelation raised questions about whether his encounter with police and the mental health system was yet another missed opportunity to put a potential mass shooter under closer law enforcement scrutiny, get him help, or make sure he didn’t have access to deadly firearms.
“Authorities said they were investigating the attack on predominantly black shoppers and workers at the Tops Friendly Market as a potential federal hate crime or act of domestic terrorism. Saturday’s mass violence in Buffalo was the deadliest of a wave of fatal weekend shootings, including at a California church and a Texas flea market.”
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