By Eric Davis
In a recent opinion piece published by VT Digger, author Jon Margolis once again took up the torch of the victim disarmament crusade by using his platform to bash Vermont’s rural, gun owning population over their campaign to create “Second Amendment Sanctuary” towns in a symbolic attempt to bring awareness to the gun confiscation efforts of legislators in Montpelier and D.C. Ironically, Mr. Margolis reached out to me by phone as the president for Gun Owners of Vermont for comment on the issue yet declined to print any of the interview presumably because my comments did not fit the progressive political narrative with which Digger constantly beats us over the head.
In his article, Margolis describes Gun Owners of Vermont and its allies as “decent fellow citizens whose views deserve an airing” as an almost obligatory courtesy before promptly declaring us a paranoid, fringe minority whose views are all but irrelevant. As if the snide, condescending dismissal of everyone who might disagree with him was not enough, Margolis’ pontification continued well into the area of tired, old, repeatedly debunked gun control talking points and the common speculative assertions which almost always accompany them.
The author makes the claim that “polling leaves little doubt that something like 90% of Vermonters (and Americans elsewhere) favor the kind of gun safety legislation that the Legislature is pondering” (in bill H.610). Oh really? I wonder if the Jon would mind sharing with his readers exactly which poll it was which helped him ascertain that “something like 90% of Vermonters” favor a bill which not only allows, but mandates the confiscation of lawfully owned private property without even a hint of due process? I certainly wasn’t polled. The author then goes on to question the newsworthiness of a movement that he admits has not only been all over the news, but of which (at the time of publication) he is the third reporter from VT Digger to seek comment from Gun Owners of Vermont, and is currently penning a 1000-word op-ed aimed at belittling Vermont’s gun owning population that he describes as the “13% of the state’s adult population (who) goes hunting.”
Margolis rolls out the usual schtick about how “no one is coming for your guns” and how “additional gun safety measures” in the name of “compelling public interest” are supported by this supposed silent majority whom we strangely never see at the hearings and whose alleged majority percentage always appears as a vague number without reference. Margolis goes on to speak as if gun rights advocates should be gullible and stupid enough to believe that just because gun confiscation does not appear as a stated goal on the websites of gun control groups that this is idea is somehow not in play. I guess he missed the part of our phone interview where I pointed out that H.610 -the bill he refers to as “mild”- is quite literally a gun confiscation bill that not only mandates the state seize firearms, but also includes language that it be done ex-parte based on potentially false accusations. H.610 assumes guilt for
accused parties based solely on the ownership of firearms and provides endless opportunity for weaponization of the law – which seems to be fine with its supporters just so long as this blanket policy of aggression is aimed only at who they consider “the other side” i.e. those who value the right to keep and bear arms.
I wonder if Mr. Margolis would be as supportive of a law which based on accusation alone would assume his guilt in writing “hate speech.” And furthermore, under the assumption of that guilt, a warrant might be issued ex-parte to confiscate his computer, cell phone, tablet, and the contents of his office right down to pencils and paper. Likewise, the law would then prohibit him from residing anywhere that he might gain access to a computer, cell phone, tablet, or pencils and paper. But fear not, the order is only temporary. When Mr. Margolis hires a lawyer and goes to court to clear his name (after it’s been dragged through the mud by the media), he can get his stuff back; accepting of course that the folks who seized his computer won’t be liable for the damages during seizure, transport and storage. Sorry about your luck sir. Oh, and I almost forgot: any innocent bystander who does not fully cooperate with law enforcement during the process (i.e. your spouse who won’t give up the password to your laptop) will be charged with a three-year felony. By his reasoning, this should all be fine so long as it’s claimed to be supported by an alleged, unsourced “majority of voters” who are not an “equally authentic,” (his words not mine) journalist hailing from the big city turned “Vermonter.” After all, “all citizens born and naturalized” should be subject to the same protections enshrined in the constitution, right? Or I guess in this case, they would be shielded from those evil protections based on a majority vote that there is a “compelling public interest” to squash Mr. Margolis’ right to speak freely.
I’m sorry folks, the sad truth is that “they” are absolutely coming for your guns. No matter how many “common sense gun laws” and “gun safety measures” that pass, it will never be enough. Gun owners have been compromising our rights away since 1934 and after every concession, the hoplophobes are inevitably back next year with just a few more “modest” reforms. The line in the sand has been getting pushed towards confiscation for years; that is an observable fact. Fortunately, for the sake of “news” agencies like Digger, it appears those pesky things called facts seem to be optional -or at least up for heavy personalized modification- before they are conveyed to the public.
VT Digger’s obvious disdain for Vermont’s gun culture is evident in nearly every article covering the subject. They have consistently declined to post pro-gun commentary from our members while lending their platform to any emotionally charged submission calling for more restrictions no matter how poorly articulated. The fact that Margolis felt the need to pen this hit piece in retaliation to a symbolic act of defiance is proof-positive that these resolutions are justified, and in fact, needed. The progressive machine is afraid of losing control and it is starting to show.