Self-Defense

Harvard Poll: Millennials Prefer Democrats To Control Congress, Stricter Gun Control Laws

I spotted the following headline on the Washington Examiner website yesterday:

“Harvard: Millennials now biggest voting group in U.S., 2-1 Democratic”

Considering this Gen Xer always strives to get a good picture of where the country might be heading and Millennials surpassed Baby Boomers last year as the nation’s largest living generation, I thought I’d go to the source and see what this is all about. From Harvard University’s Institute of Politics website:

“Two-thirds of youth fearful about America’s future, prefer Democratic control of Congress, Harvard youth poll finds”

CAMBRIDGE, MA – A new national poll of America’s 18- to 29-year-olds by Harvard’s Institute of Politics (IOP), located at the Kennedy School of Government, finds that two-thirds of young Americans (67%) are more fearful than hopeful about America’s future. Less than one year before the 2018 midterm elections, likely young American voters cite preference for Democratic control of Congress, 65% to 33%.

The Fall 2017 poll, the IOP’s 34th major public opinion poll since 2000, also shows that President Trump’s approval ratings continue to decline, heightened concern about the state of race relations in the country and increased support for stricter gun control laws.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Key findings included:

4. Democratic control of Congress preferred 2:1; Democrats more engaged, Republicans less so, compared to 2014 midterm cycle; motivation among Democrats +9 since January

Among 18- to 29-year-olds who are likely to vote, 65% would prefer to see Democrats control Congress after the 2018 midterms. One third of young voters (33%) prefer Republican control. Independent voters prefer Democratic control by over 30 points (66% to 32%). Across most measures, young Democrats in our poll are more engaged politically than they were at a comparable time in the 2014 midterm cycle, while Republicans are less engaged. The percentage of Democrats who consider themselves politically engaged has increased 8 points, from 24% to 32%, while Republican engagement is down 7 points, from 31% to 24%.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Among the additional findings:

7. 61% of young Americans believe gun laws should be more strict, representing a marked change since 2013 when less than half (49%) felt the same way.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

These poll findings suggest the U.S., with Millennials at the helm, could be headed “left,” with more gun control laws being enacted.

That being said, I did observe the following in the poll’s “Topline Report” which could raise questions about the findings/claims made:

6. When it comes to voting, with which party do you consider yourself to be affiliated?

Net: Democrat… 38%
Net: Republican… 22%

Independent/Unaffiliated… 39%
Lean Democrat… 10%
Lean Republican… 6%

7. When it comes to most political issues, do you think of yourself as a…?

Net: Liberal… 37%
Moderate… 28%
Net: Conservative… 32%

Critics might point out the “shortage” of Republican, Republican-leaning Independent, and Conservative poll respondents.

Still, the findings of this new Harvard poll only increases my suspicions of what could be in store for America down the road.

More on that later. In the meantime, you can read about the poll on the Institute of Politics’ site here.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Escaped ISIS Fighters To Attack UK, Mainland Europe During The Holidays?

I hope readers had a nice Thanksgiving. Emerging from my food coma, I intended to restart the discussion about money/investing when I saw this headline over on the Daily Express (UK) website Sunday:

“War-trained Islamic State fighters plan to strike in UK”

Marco Giannangeli reported yesterday morning:

HUNDREDS of Islamic State fighters have fled Syria and are heading for the UK and Europe to mount a series of Christmas attacks in revenge for their defeat at Raqqa.

The warning, from Turkish intelligence officers, follows concerns that the head of IS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, escaped Raqqa with thousands of armed extremist fighters- including many British jihadis- in a secret peace deal five weeks ago.

Last night a British military source who attended the briefing said it left no room for doubt.

“Their [Turkish] intelligence service briefed that IS have been smuggled into Turkey in numbers and are heading to Europe and the UK,” he said.

“The threat level is very high and it is evident the Turkish authorities have detained a number of people and are confident the information is accurate.”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

According to Giannangeli, “More than 4,000 IS fighters, still carrying weapons and ammunition, their families and hostages,” managed to escape as part of this alleged deal.

Now, if the mention of an arrangement with ISIS rings a bell with regular readers of the blog that’s because a week-and-a-half ago I brought up a November 13 BBC News article mentioning that same “secret peace deal.” I wrote:

Finally, there’s the following from Riam Dalati and Quentin Sommerville on the BBC News website on November 13. They penned a piece in which “The BBC has uncovered details of a secret deal that let hundreds of IS fighters and their families escape from Raqqa, under the gaze of the US and British-led coalition and Kurdish-led forces who control the city. A convoy included some of IS’s most notorious members and – despite reassurances – dozens of foreign fighters…”:

The number of Islamic State escapees floated by the Daily Express and BBC differ, but this particular terror threat to the United Kingdom and mainland Europe remains should there be some truth to these reports.

Time will tell, as usual.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Giannangeli, Marco. “War-trained Islamic State fighters plan to strike in UK.” Daily Express. 26 Nov. 2017. (https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/884412/War-trained-Islamic-State-fighters-trained-strike-UK-Syria-Abu-Bakr-al-Baghdadi). 26 Nov. 2017.

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‘Best Articles’ About Surviving A Terrorist Attack

I know I’ve been blogging a lot lately about the subject of terrorism, but before I switch gears and tackle other topics I thought readers might like to know about a good jumping-off point for useful information about surviving a terrorist attack.

Back on November 18, 2015, Greg Ellifritz, President and Primary Instructor of Ohio-based Active Response Training, penned an article (portal, really) entitled “The Six Best Resources for Surviving a Terrorist Attack.” This was compiled two days after the carnage carried out by jihadists in Paris that claimed the lives of 130 people (with another 413 injured). The Ohio law enforcement officer wrote:

Since the multi-pronged terrorist attack on Paris last Friday, lots of experts have written articles about how to survive such an event. Some are great. Others are worthless.

I’ve been reading everything I can find about the attacks… Here are the best articles I’ve found on the topic (in no particular order). All are worth a read.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

“All are worth a read.”

They pretty much are, considering the material comes from “some of the smartest, most seasoned and dangerous dudes in the world.” The articles included:

• “Perspectives: Wishful Thinking & Playing Dead Is Not a Plan,” by David Reeder with Steve Tarani, Frankie McRae, Kyle Lamb, Greg Ellifritz, Derrick Van Orden, Charles K. Redlinger, Mike Pannone, and Danny “Gator” Pritbor (four parts)
• “Think like a Veteran: Surviving a violent attack,” by Scott Witner
• “Paris, France Attacks” by “Someone You Know”
• “Ten Ways To Avoid Being Killed During A Terrorist Attack” by Brent Wheat
• “Thoughts On Paris” by Larry Correia
• “‘Run-Hide-Fight’: Former Navy SEAL Reveals How You Can Survive a Terrorist Attack” by Clinton Emerson

Ellifritz’s effort here is much appreciated, and readers can access the piece on the Active Response Training website here.

Do readers know of any other decent articles about surviving terrorist attacks? If so, please feel free to share them via this post’s “Comments” section.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Russians Issue Terrorism Warning For Citizens Traveling To U.S.

Right before the weekend I blogged about the State Department issuing a “Europe Travel Alert” Thursday warning Americans about a “heightened risk of terrorist attacks throughout Europe, particularly during the holiday season.”

This morning, I came across the following on the website of Russian international TV network RT:

The Russian Foreign Ministry has issued a warning to citizens, urging those traveling to European and US cities in the coming months to exercise caution, as the holiday season may prompt terrorist attacks in popular destinations.

In a brief message posted online, the Situational-Crisis Center said there was an increased probability of terrorist attacks during Christmas and the New Year, between December 20 and January 20. It added the hashtags #Europe and #USA.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The Russians merely having a go at America? Or does Moscow actually possess some information about a potential terror threat directed against the United States- and in particular, American cities- during this timeframe?

No mention in the RT piece about specific intel which may have led to the Russian government issuing the warning.

Still, considering we live in a time of war, it pays to be vigilant.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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State Department Issues Warning For Americans Traveling To Europe During Holiday Season

New readers of the blog may be wondering why I brought up the threat of terrorism in France yesterday. Not our circus, nor our monkeys, right? Wrong. As I wrote back on September 22, 2014:

Regular readers of Survival And Prosperity know that I’ve taken the threat of terrorism by Muslim extremists seriously for years now- whether Al-Qaeda, the Islamic State, their affiliates, or sympathizers. While it’s obvious to me a number of entities (particularly politicians) are taking advantage of the newly-minted caliphate’s boogeyman factor these days for their own gain, I do believe the Islamic State does pose a real danger to Americans here and abroad. As such, I plan on blogging about the group formerly known as ISIS/ISIL on a regular basis.

“I do believe the Islamic State does pose a real danger to Americans here and abroad”

From a “Europe Travel Alert” issued by the U.S. Department of State earlier today:

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the heightened risk of terrorist attacks throughout Europe, particularly during the holiday season. U.S. citizens should exercise caution at holiday festivals and events. This Travel Alert expires on January 31, 2018…

Extremists continue to focus on tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, and local government facilities as viable targets. In addition, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, high-profile events, educational institutions, airports, and other soft targets remain priority locations for possible attacks. U.S. citizens should exercise additional vigilance in these and similar locations.

Terrorists persist in employing a variety of tactics, including firearms, explosives, using vehicles as ramming devices, and sharp-edged weapons that are difficult to detect prior to an attack.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The official warning comes on the heels of a new threat directed against the Vatican by the Islamic State. Nicole Rojas reported on the International Business Times website yesterday:

Isis has made a terrifying threat against the Vatican in the weeks before thousands of faithful are set to descend on the Holy See for Christmas celebrations. A pro-Isis propaganda channel made the threat by releasing a poster showing a car attack.

The ominous poster, reading “Christmas blood” and “so wait…” depicts a masked jihadi driving towards St Peter’s Basilica in a BMW. An assault rifle, backpack and explosives ride along in the passenger seat.

The threatening poster was released by the pro-Isis Wafa Media Foundation, according to monitor Site Intelligence Group. The terror monitoring group MEMRI said the image first appeared on anonymous messaging app Telegram on Tuesday (14 November) night.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

I remind readers of a speech made by Islamic State spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani back on September 21, 2014. From “Indeed Your Lord Is Ever Watchful”:

O Americans, and O Europeans, the Islamic State did not initiate a war against you, as your governments and media try to make you believe. It is you who started the transgression against us, and thus you deserve blame and you will pay a great price. You will pay the price when your economies collapse. You will pay the price when your sons are sent to wage war against us and they return to you as disabled amputees, or inside coffins, or mentally ill. You will pay the price as you are afraid of travelling to any land. Rather you will pay the price as you walk on your streets, turning right and left, fearing the Muslims. You will not feel secure even in your bedrooms. You will pay the price when this crusade of yours collapses, and thereafter we will strike you in your homeland, and you will never be able to harm anyone afterwards. You will pay the price, and we have prepared for you what will pain you

If you can kill a disbelieving American or European- especially the spiteful and filthy French- or an Australian, or a Canadian, or any other disbeliever from the disbelievers waging war, including the citizens of the countries that entered into a coalition against the Islamic State, then rely upon Allah, and kill him in any manner or way however it may be. Do not ask for anyone’s advice and do not seek anyone’s verdict. Kill the disbeliever whether he is civilian or military, for they have the same ruling. Both of them are disbelievers. Both of them are considered to be waging war [the civilian by belonging to a state waging war against the Muslims]. Both of their blood and wealth is legal for you to destroy, for blood does not become illegal or legal to spill by the clothes being worn. The civilian outfit does not make blood illegal to spill, and the military uniform does not make blood legal to spill. The only things that make blood illegal and legal to spill are Islam and a covenant (peace treaty, dhimma, etc.). Blood becomes legal to spill through disbelief. So whoever is a Muslim, his blood and wealth are sanctified. And whoever is a disbeliever, his wealth is legal for a Muslim to take and his blood is legal to spill. His blood is like the blood of a dog; there is no sin for him in spilling it nor is there any blood money to be paid for doing such…

If you are not able to find an IED or a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman, or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or run him over with your car, or throw him down from a high place, or choke him, or poison him. Do not lack. Do not be contemptible. Let your slogan be, “May I not be saved if the cross worshipper and taghūt (ruler ruling by manmade laws) patron survives.”

If you are unable to do so, then burn his home, car, or business. Or destroy his crops.

If you are unable to do so, then spit in his face. If your self refuses to do so, while your brothers are being bombarded and killed, and while their blood and wealth everywhere is deemed lawful by their enemies, then review your religion. You are in a dangerous condition because the religion cannot be established without walā’ and barā’…

And so we promise you by Allah’s permission that this campaign will be your final campaign. It will be broken and defeated, just as all your previous campaigns were broken and defeated, except that this time we will raid you thereafter, and you will never raid us. We will conquer your Rome, break your crosses, and enslave your women, by the permission of Allah, the Exalted. This is His promise to us; He is glorified and He does not fail in His promise. If we do not reach that time, then our children and grandchildren will reach it, and they will sell your sons as slaves at the slave market.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

You can read that entire travel advisory on the State Department website here.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Rojas, Nicole. “Pro-Isis propaganda channel vows “Christmas blood” in new threat against the Vatican.” International Business Times. 15 Nov. 2017. (http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/pro-isis-propaganda-channel-vows-christmas-blood-new-threat-against-vatican-1647517). 16 Nov. 2017.

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New ‘Responsible Body Armor Possession Act’ Legislation Coming?

At the end of last week I pointed out the new “Assault Weapons Ban of 2017” legislation that was introduced in the U.S. Senate on November 8.

Not really surprising considering the recent mass shootings in Nevada and Texas.

Another proposed ban that wouldn’t be shocking is a new “Responsible Body Armor Possession Act” bill, “justified” via initial reports of the Nevada and Texas shooters both possibly possessing ballistic protection at each crime scene. The Associated Press reported back on October 9:

Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo says the shooter at a Las Vegas concert who killed 58 people fired at fuel tanks near the Mandalay Bay Hotel from which he was shooting.

Lombardo also says Stephen Paddock had personal protection equipment in his room.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

And from Doug Poppa over on The Los Angeles Post-Examiner website on November 9:

Stephen Willeford was at home less than a block away from the First Baptist Church when his daughter ran in telling him that there was gunfire coming from the church.

Willeford immediately went to his gun safe, removed his AR-15 rifle, a box of ammunition and an unloaded magazine and ran out of the house barefooted, loading up the magazine with several rounds as he headed for the church.

When he approached the church, he said he saw Kelley, who was wearing a tactical helmet with a visor and ballistic armor, heading to his truck with a handgun in his hand.

Kelley opened fire on Willeford who was using a neighbor’s truck as cover.

Willeford, who is an NRA certified firearms instructor said he knew when he saw Kelley’s ballistic armor that he had to aim for Kelley’s side which was exposed between the Velcro straps that pulled the front and back of the ballistic armor together.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

While Paddock’s “personal protection equipment” may not turn out to be body armor (not sure if the American public will ever be privy to that information), taking into Stephen Willeford’s shooting background, it does sound like Devin Kelley could have been wearing a bullet-resistant vest/plate carrier (if what The Los Angeles Post-Examiner reported is true). Even if it turns out neither individual had body armor, the potential remains for a new ban being proposed. Consider the following from the Loadout Room website concerning the push for the original Responsible Body Armor Possession Act of 2014:

In support of this bill, it has been claimed the mass killers who carried out the shootings in Newtown and Aurora were wearing body armor during their crimes. Initial press reports falsely described the shooters wearing body armor. One was wearing a ‘fishing vest’ and the other a mall ninja type load bearing vest. Neither killer had any type of ballistic protection.

Should new legislation seeking to ban “enhanced” body armor be introduced, I can’t say for sure what kind of reception it will get in Congress. The same goes for the “Assault Weapons Ban of 2017” (especially after what just happened in California).

Survival And Prosperity will be watching, however.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Sources:

“Las Vegas sheriff: Shooter fired at nearby fuel tanks.” Associated Press. 9 Oct. 2017. (http://www.kolotv.com/content/news/Las-Vegas-sheriff-Shooter-filed-at-nearby-fuel-tanks-450144573.html). 14 Nov. 2017

Poppa, Doug. “Three heroes emerge amidst the tragedy in Texas.” The Los Angeles Post-Examiner. 9 Nov. 2017. (http://lapostexaminer.com/three-heroes-emerge-amidst-tragedy-texas/2017/11/09). 14 Nov. 2017.

Miller, Mark. “My Body Armor, My Choice: Member of Congress Introduces a Bill to Ban Body Armor for Civilians.” Loadout Room. 9 Sep. 2017. (https://loadoutroom.com/thearmsguide/body-armor-choice-california-congressman-introduces-bill-ban-body-armor-civilians/). 15 Nov. 2017.

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‘Assault Weapons Ban Of 2017’ Legislation Introduced In U.S. Senate

You knew it was coming after the Nevada and Texas mass shootings. From the website of the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislation Action (NRA-ILA) Thursday:

Dianne Feinstein Wants to Ban Commonly Owned Semi-Autos, Again!

On Wednesday, Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced S. 2095, which she is calling the Assault Weapons Ban of 2017. The 125-page firearm prohibition fever dream is perhaps the most far-reaching gun ban ever introduced in Congress.

Subject to an exception for “grandfathered” firearms, the bill would prohibit AR-15s and dozens of other semi-automatic rifles by name (as well as their “variants” or “altered facsimiles”), and any semi-automatic rifle that could accept a detachable magazine and be equipped with a pistol grip, an adjustable or detachable stock, or a barrel shroud. And that’s just a partial list. “Pistol grip” would be defined as “a grip, a thumbhole stock, or any other characteristic that can function as a grip,” meaning the ban could implicate even traditional stocks or grips specifically designed to comply with existing state “assault weapon” laws.

Needless to say, semi-automatic shotguns and handguns would get similar treatment.

Also banned would be any magazine with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds or even any magazine that could be “readily restored, changed, or converted to accept” more than 10 rounds.

While Feinstein’s bill would graciously allow those who lawfully owned the newly-banned guns at the time of the law’s enactment to keep them, it would impose strict storage requirements any time the firearm was not actually in the owner’s hands or within arm’s reach. Violations would be punishable (of course) by imprisonment.

Owners of grandfathered “assault weapons” could also go to prison for allowing someone else to borrow or buy the firearm, unless the transfer was processed through a licensed firearms dealer. The dealer would be required to document the transaction and run a background check on the recipient.

Should lawful owners of the newly-banned firearms and magazines decide that the legal hazards of keeping them were too much, the bill would authorize the use of taxpayer dollars in the form of federal grants to establish programs to provide “compensation” for their surrender to the government.

This bill is nothing more than a rehash of Feinstein’s failed experiment in banning “assault weapons” and magazines over 10 rounds. Except this time, Feinstein would like to go even further in restricting law-abiding Americans’ access to firearms and magazines that are commonly owned for lawful self-defense.

The congressionally-mandated study of the federal “assault weapon ban” of 1994-2004 found that the ban had little, if any, impact on crime, in part because “the banned guns were never used in more than a modest fraction” of firearm related crime.

Don’t let Dianne Feinstein infringe on our Second Amendment rights with a policy that’s been proven to do nothing to stop crime. Please contact your U.S. Senators and encourage them to oppose S. 2095. You can contact your U.S. Senators by phone at (202) 224-3121, or click here to Take Action.


“Diane Feinstein on Gun ban in 1995 -Mr. and Mrs. America, turn your guns in!”
YouTube Video

Permission granted by the NRA-ILA to reproduce the material above.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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