Actually, Donald Trump Could “Red Flag” Chris Cuomo – And Here’s Why

HB19-1177 Colorado Red Flag ERPO Extreme Risk Protection Orders

In the wake of two tragic public mass shootings, one of which the National Gun Violence Memorial actually honored the perpetrator as a gun violence victim, calls for knee jerk gun control legislation has been front and center on both the left and the right.  Prominent Republicans such as President Donald Trump, Congressman Dan Crenshaw, and several senators are calling for “Red Flag” Extreme Risk Protection Order ERPO laws.

And now, after Colorado passed an atrocious “Red Flag” ERPO bill in 2019 – a bill that passed by only ONE vote in the hyper-partisan Democrat controlled legislature with every Republican and three Democrats voting against it – we might be looking at Colorado becoming a blueprint for the whole country, a very terrible idea.

Then yesterday I woke to this tweet from President Donald Trump: “Would Chris Cuomo be given a Red Flag for his recent rant? Filthy language and a total loss of control. He shouldn’t be allowed to have any weapon. He’s nuts!”

I, just like millions of others, had to hunt down exactly what Trump was talking about.  And I did.  Here’s what happened:

A man in New York approached CNN’s Chris Cuomo and called him “Fredo”.  Watch the video for the exact exchange, but here’s a snip…

Cuomo: “You’re going to have a problem”
Man: “What are you going to do about it?”
Cuomo: “I’ll fuckin ruin your shit. I’ll fucking throw you down these stairs”

Now here’s where I think this gets really interesting following Trump’s tweet; Cuomo could actually get Red Flagged for this.  The criteria fits perfectly.  This is why:

1.) He made a violent threat – and even though the threat was regarding stairs, not firearms, it STILL qualifies!  Below is an excerpt from HB19-1177, Colorado’s “Red Flag” ERPO law.  You can access it yourself here, scroll to the bottom of page 8 and top of page 9.

HB19-1177 Colorado Red Flag ERPO Extreme Risk Protection Orders

2.) We know he owns firearms because he has stated that on Twitter in the past.  Again in HB19-1177, it states another qualification is ownership, access to, or intent to posses a firearm.  Read it yourself here, scroll to the bottom of page 8 and top of page 9.

HB19-1177 Colorado Red Flag ERPO Extreme Risk Protection Orders

And his Tweet stating he’s a gun owner:

HB19-1177 Colorado Red Flag ERPO Extreme Risk Protection Orders

Now the person Cuomo threatened wouldn’t be able to bring forth the “Red Flag” ERPO petition (unless, of course, he wanted to state him and Cuomo had an affair in the past), but that person – or anyone for that matter – would be able to approach law enforcement and ask them to do it for him.  Or if an ex-girlfriend of Cuomo’s saw this, or maybe a live-in nanny he’d fired, they’d be able to go right to the court and file the petition themselves.

What happens next?   Well, Cuomo would get a visit from his local law enforcement agency with a temporary “Red Flag” order in hand, along with a search warrant to find all those guns he’s told us he owns.  Within 14 days, he’d be able to go to court and show the judge Trump’s tweet, and convince him or her that he is not a risk to anyone at all – even though he’d made the threats to throw that man down the stairs. If the judge doesn’t agree to return his guns, the order goes into effect for 364 days, during which time Cuomo will have one opportunity to ask the courts to get his firearms – his means of self defense – back. Of course, each time the court considers returning them, the person who brought forth the petition will be alerted and have an opportunity to ask the judge to not return them – FOREVER.

Sounds like some real “common sense gun legislation” doesn’t it?  <insert sarcasm>

But it proves the point of exactly how poorly these laws are written, and that Trump, as misguided (or not?) as his Twitter statement was, it is 110% accurate and not hyperbole at all. 

Gun Memorial Website Honors Dayton, OH Mass Shooter As Gun Violence Victim

Gun Memorial Website Honors Dayton, OH Mass Shooter As Gun Violence Victim Connor Betts

I’ve written about this disturbing “Gun Violence Memorial” website before.  A website that claims to be about honoring victims of gun violence, keeping daily stats, and allowing people to light candles for lost loved ones.  On the surface it sounds genuine, until you start digging deeper and realize they also “honor” perpetrators who are killed justifiably, whether by their victims or by law enforcement.  This website gets their information from the “Gun Violence Archive” another website which on the surface sounds honest, but again, they also count perpetrators as gun violence victims to pump up their numbers. Did you hear the recent mass shooting number for 2019 as 251?  Yeah, they got that from them.  We’ve debunked the Gun Violence Archive’s mass shooting numbers before (and I’ll be doing it again soon).  Click here to read more on that.

It should have come as no surprise to me that one of the latest “gun violence victims” listed on the Gun Memorial site is 24 year old Connor Betts, the mass murderer who killed 9 and injured 27 when he opened fire at popular nightlife area of Dayton, OH this past weekend.  Betts was killed within minutes by police – with a firearm – and because the officer used a firearm, Betts is now another stat, another “gun violence” victim that the anti-gun left is using to push their agenda.  This particular scenario is especially disgusting as they are also using the real victims as well to push for all sorts of gun control, including dangerous “Red Flag” Extreme Risk Protection Order laws.  

Gun Memorial Website Honors Dayton, OH Mass Shooter As Gun Violence Victim Connor Betts

But honestly, it did come as a surprise to even me that this anti-gun group is so hell bent on twisting their numbers to fit their narrative that they would memorialize this particular evil perpetrator.  At the time of this writing, three people have already lit a candle for Betts.  And I must ask the question: does memorializing mass shooters lead to more mass shooters?  

The Denver Westword often uses this same website to validate their stories about gun ownership and/or violence.  And they should be ashamed.

I wrote last year about the memorializing of a 60 year old man who was killed in self defense by a 23 year old woman while he was bashing her head into the guardrail during a Washington road rage incident.  In that instance, eventually the push back to the “Gun Memorial” site was so massive they removed him.  Good.  They should remove Connor Betts too.  In fact, they should remove anyone who was justifiably killed by firearm.  Guns also save lives.  They did for that young woman in Washington, and they did this past weekend in Dayton, OH.

Why “Red Flag” ERPO Laws Are Not The Solution To Mass Shootings

Are "Red Flag" ERPO Laws The Solution To Mass Shootings?

After two devastating mass shootings this past weekend, one in El Paso, TX and the other in Dayton, OH, I woke today to calls for more gun control from politicians spanning the political spectrum.  Those on the anti-gun left have gone so far as suggesting banning nearly every modern day semi-automatic firearm and having police go door to door confiscating them.  And those on the right are calling for “Red Flag” Extreme Risk Protection Order laws in every state.

But is this really the answer?  The suggestion of a door to door gun confiscation would be laughable if these people were joking- but they aren’t.  How any politician believes using what they refer to as “weapons of war” to confiscate “weapons of war” will not turn into a war, is beyond me.  Even the anti-gun, Bloomberg funded website “The Trace” admits there are at bare minimum 20 million civilian owned, modern day sporting rifles in the US, and nearly all of them have never been used to commit a crime.

So what about “Red Flag” laws?  Let’s take a quick look at Red Flag laws and what they do…

“Red Flag” laws are also called ERPO’s or Extreme Risk Protection Orders, a term coined by the anti-gun movement to deter from the negative reputation that came with “Red Flag” legislation.  Don’t be fooled though, they are the exact same thing.  Red Flag laws have actually been around since 1999, although they are quickly rising in popularity.  In fact, Connecticut had a Red Flag law in place when the Sandy Hook shooting happened and California had one in place at the time of the San Bernardino attack, the Thousands Oaks shooting, and the Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting.

The proponents and mainstream media will tell you Red Flag ERPO laws allow family or law enforcement to petition the court to have the firearms removed from someone who is proven to be a danger to themselves or others.

To the general public, this sounds pretty benign, and polling reflects that when the law is presented this way.

But what if I phrased it this way: It’s a law that allows an abusive ex to petition the court, over the phone, for $0, to have the firearms confiscated from an individual they wish to disarm.  The petition is granted based on the lowest evidentiary threshold used in court, a preponderance of evidence (meaning there is a 51% chance that the accusation is true) and when the temporary order is issued by the court, it is coupled with a search warrant.  This means the first time the accused even finds out these proceedings are taking place is when the police are at their door ready to raid their home prepared to take away their means of self defense against the same abusive ex who requested the ERPO – and possibly the means of defense for their children.

Because that is exactly what these laws do.  It is legalized swatting that can be done by a laundry list of family members, former and current roommates, and anyone you have ever been intimate with.  Don’t believe me?  Read through the 30+ pages of HB19-1177 “Red Flag” Extreme Risk Protection Orders that was just signed by the governor here in Colorado.

There is a big difference between supporting the concept of a Red Flag law, and supporting the actual legislation that is being passed. The devil is always in the details.

But do they work?

Well, we already pointed out above three mass shooting in California with one of the broadest Red Flag laws (right behind Colorado’s), as well as Sandy Hook in Connecticut.  So, no, they didn’t work to stop killers in those instances and there is zero evidence they have thwarted any attacks elsewhere.

But what about suicide? Proponents will of course tell you yes, they work.  States like Indiana pointed to stats showing suicide by firearm was decreasing.  Well, turns out it wasn’t.  It was still increasing but not at the projected rate, so they consider that a win.  In addition, suicide by other methods has skyrocketed and Indiana has dropped from 19th in the country for mental health in 2011, to 45th in 2015, and in both 2016 and 2017 suicide was the tenth leading cause of death for all residents over all demographics, and the leading cause for certain demographics.  Their Red Flag law was enacted in 2005.

Why are we seeing these results?  Because these laws have nothing to do with mental health, and everything to do with taking away the guns.  The bill sponsors here in Colorado even admitted that during the month long debate before the bill passed by ONE SINGLE vote with every Republican and three Democrats voting against it.  Watch the video here:

These laws are widely opposed by law enforcement, as they realize the danger they will put their officers and citizens in, as well as the unconstitutionality of the law.  In Colorado, more than 50 of the 64 sheriffs opposed the legislation, as did the Denver and Aurora police unions.  The ACLU has opposed legislation in other states such as Rhode Island.  And people have been killed having these Red Flag orders served, such as happened in Maryland when a woman ERPO’d her brother after a family dispute. She later admitted she did not believe he would have hurt a fly, but he was killed when he refused to turn over his guns. Trading death for death is never the answer. The lives of gun owners do not matter less than the lives of anyone else.

We should also always remember in the “do something” era, passing feel good, knee jerk, virtue signaling legislation is a waste of valuable time and resources that could be used to actually DO SOMETHING, for example Maine passed a completely different proper adjudication law to address the same issue.  You can learn about that by listening to this podcast here.

And let us never forget…

Recalls, Recalls, Recalls! What You Need To Know

After one of the most hyper-partisan elections Colorado has ever witnessed, the 2019 legislative session was one for the history books.  With Governor Jared Polis signing into law 456 new pieces of legislation, including HB19-1177 “Red Flag” Extreme Risk Protection Orders, citizens of the state were left stunned by what had transpired.  And they’re doing something about it through several recalls that are in the works.

Here’s what you need to know about them:

Recall Governor Jared Polis

The Recall Polis campaign is a mighty feat, and if you were paying attention on social media when it launched, you know it got off to a rocky start with three recall groups struggling to work together.  Although the dust has settled on the latter issue, the recall is still a huge task. That said, I’ve been impressed with the pure energy and grassroots effort that it has become.  In all corners of the state and along the front range, hundreds of volunteers are setting up signing locations and dedicating their summer to get this done.  They will need to collect 631,000 valid signatures by September 7th for the recall to move forward.  If they succeed, a special election will take place in which voters will be asked if they want to recall the governor; and a second question asking if the governor is recalled, who they would want to replace him.  I’ve heard very little about possible candidates, so I suppose we’ll cross that bridge if we get there.

The initial conflict of the Recall Polis campaigns had some people believing the petitions were fake or that if they signed it, they would lose their opportunity to sign the “real” petition.  I have no opinions about the groups involved, but what I do know is the petition being circulated is legit and is the only Recall Polis petition available.  The group has said if they do not collect enough signatures in the time allotted they will not turn them in, which means any other group could start another recall and anyone who already signed would be able to sign again.

There are hundreds of signing locations available daily all over the state.  To find signing locations click here.

Recall State Senator Pete Lee

State Senator Pete Lee also has an active recall. Lee sits in El Paso county’s SD-11 which encompasses Central and West Colorado Springs, Down Town, The Older part of Colorado Springs By Colorado College, Manitou Springs, Old Colorado City and more. This is also the same seat State Senator John Morse was recalled from in 2013 after he supported a package of gun control bills.  Senator Pete Lee was a strong proponent of HB19-1177 “Red Flag” ERPO during the 2019 legislative session, even after the local newspaper encouraged him to vote with his constituents and not his party. It’s a little more difficult to find recall signing locations for Lee, but more information and a contact form can be found here.  I’ve also been told petitions are available at Specialty Sports & Supply (4285 E Fountain Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80916) from 3 – 5pm M-F, or Western Insurance Solutions (4740 Flintridge Dr, Colorado Springs, CO 80918) from 9am – 5pm M-F.

Recall State Senator Brittany Pettersen

State Senator Brittany Pettersen was not only a supporter of Colorado’s “Red Flag” legislation, she sponsored it.  And now there is an active recall against her.  She sits in SD22, which encompasses part of Jefferson County. The number of times she mocked the concerns of gun owners was simply shocking – even abused women who spoke of their fear an abuser could legally disarm them through the red flag law.  She is quoted as saying “This bill is not about mental health, it is about taking away guns.”  Finding information about the signing locations for her recall has proven to be difficult, as most petitioners are going door to door.  If you are in her district and want to sign or carry a petition, I’d suggest using the contact form on this webpage.

Recall Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock

Republican Sheriff of Douglas County, Tony Spurlock, led the path for HB19-1177 “Red Flag” ERPO.  The bill is named after a deputy of his, Zackari Parrish, who died in the line of duty.  The bill is supposed to prevent situations like the one Deputy Parrish walked into from happening, but instead it created a disaster that will not only put law enforcement in harms way, but citizens too.  Sheriff Tony Spurlock helped pass a law that was opposed by over 50 of Colorado’s 64 sheriffs along with the Denver and Aurora Police Unions because they know how dangerous it is to those in the line of duty.  The law is grossly unconstitutional, violating multiple rights of citizens.  And Spurlock worked hand in hand with Moms Demand Action, Bloomberg’s well funded astroturf arm of Everytown for Gun Safety, to pass it into law.  Spurlock needs to go.  A well organized effort is underway to recall him with petitions expected to drop by September.  Organizers are asking those anxious to sign to be patient, as they have a plan – and they do.  If you are in DougCo and want to sign a petition, you can pre-register here.  You can also sign up to volunteer and/or make a donation at www.recallspurlock.org.  Follow the effort on Facebook here.

What is a valid signature?

A valid signature is from a Colorado voter who is registered to vote in the district of the recall, or for the Recall Polis any Colorado resident who is registered to vote in the state.  When signing, their name, address, and signature must match that of their voter registration.  It is important that nicknames aren’t used, and that if the voter has moved recently, they use the address where they are registered to vote on the date they are signing.  If they have recently moved to the recall district, they will need to update their voter registration with their new address before signing the petition.

CLICK HERE to check your voter registration and/or make changes.
CLICK HERE to register to vote.

Everyone has differing opinions on recalls.  My opinion is simple. If you support the effort, sign the petition.  If you don’t support it, don’t sign it.  

Red Flag Gun Bills Have Nothing To Do With Mental Health And Everyone Should Care

Earlier this year, during the 2018 legislative session, Colorado Republicans held a one seat majority in the state senate.  This was enough to stop a poorly written and heavily rushed Red Flag Bill from becoming law.  Unfortunately for those who support gun rights and due process, that single seat was lost in November’s election along with several others, and 2019’s legislative session is expected to be a fight – with a Red Flag Bill a top priority for lawmakers who are proving to be against the civil rights of the same citizens they were elected to represent.

Here’s a thorough breakdown of the last Red Flag Bill Coloradan’s faced, as well as details about the major issues within such legislation.

Colorado’s Red Flag Bill (HB18-1436) was heavily promoted through the media – both radio and TV- as a mental health bill, implying that it would help the mentally ill and get them treatment.  But when Sheriff Sprulock was asked on May 7, 2018 in a Senate committee meeting, “Does this bill address how to get those people that mental health treatment?”  Sheriff Sprulock answered, “No it doesn’t.”

The issuing of an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) begins with the petitioner making a phone call, at minimum, to the court to request an ERPO.  There is no verification or proof required for this phone call.  This call could come from someone claiming to be a “dating partner” or a “family member”.  Your bitter neighbor could claim to have had an affair with you.  There is no limitation to how long ago you dated or who the family member is, or even if they are in the state of Colorado.

Red Flag Bill Emergency Risk Protection Order ERPO Colorado Gun Confiscation Colorado Rally for our Rights

The court must issue a hearing by telephone or in person with the petitioner that same day or the following day.  The judge will hear a “preponderance of evidence” from the petitioner, and only the petitioner, with the goal to convince the fact finder that there is a greater than 50% chance that the claim is true.  This is comparable to a “he said – she said” argument, only the accused gun owner is not informed or allowed to contest the petitioner.  This is a Kangaroo court, and the gun owners’ damnation is absolute.  In the court hearing, evidence such as access to a firearm or purchased ammunition is enough to issue a temporary ERPO.

Once the temporary ERPO is issued, the gun owner is then declared a “dangerous person” and a good faith effort is made to issue the gun owner a statement that they can no longer be in possession of a firearm.  The gun owner must sell the firearms, transfer them to a Federal Firearms Licensed dealer, or hand them over to the police.  It is at this point the accused even learns such a case has been brought to the court. They must comply, no questions asked, or they may face death, as we recently saw in Maryland.

Red Flag Bill Emergency Risk Protection Order ERPO Colorado Gun Confiscation Colorado Rally for our Rights

Seven days after the temporary ERPO is issued the gun owner can have a court date where they are responsible to provide an attorney to defend themselves.  Because they have not been accused of a crime, they will NOT be read their Miranda Rights and an attorney will NOT be provided to them.  They must proceed pro-se or hire an attorney.

If this bill is for mental health, the Petitioner just cost the gun owner thousands of dollars in legal defense fees; funds which could have otherwise been spent on treatment.

This bill states that “clear and convincing evidence” is the requirement to issue a EPRO for 182 days. It also states that having any access to a firearm or the purchase of ammunition is clear and convincing evidence. Because the bill lists the purchase of ammunition as clear and convincing evidence, it has short changed the higher standard of evidence for one that is almost as low as the preponderance of evidence requirement.

Red Flag Bill Emergency Risk Protection Order ERPO Colorado Gun Confiscation Colorado Rally for our Rights

Then if found innocent of everything, you are not guaranteed to be removed from the NICS database and therefore cannot get your firearms back.  If you’re a resident of a city such as Boulder, where an “assault weapons” ban allowed a grandfathering period where you could get your firearms certified, if you did not certify your firearms, you will not be getting them back.

Red Flag Bill Emergency Risk Protection Order ERPO Colorado Gun Confiscation Colorado Rally for our Rights

Bottom line: If you are issued an ERPO, you will have to give up your firearms, you will have to provide your own legal defense at your cost, your name will go into the NICS database as being prohibited from having a firearm, all before you go to court to prove your case, and never once will actual mental health be a topic.

Don’t be fooled, this bill is a gun grab bill in the name of mental health, where gun owners must give up their property before due processes is given.

Gun owners save lives!  Armed citizens stop crime with firearms more than 1.5 million times each year.  Help us get this billboard up for the 2019 legislative session!  Donate here: www.gofundme.com/gun-rights-billboards

gun rights save lives billboard colorado rally for our rights