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NH: Vid of my latest open carry incident

Discussion in 'Activism Discussion and Planning' started by DadaOrwell2, Aug 6, 2007.

  1. jpk1md

    jpk1md Active Member

    Jan 11, 2007
    ja, If you choose to submit thats your choice.

    Lets recall the timeline of events....the OP Parks Car, Gets out and begins walking down the sidewalk....there was no PC for the Police Stop.

    The OP was 100% within his rights according to NH State Law which allows for OC.....conversely the LEO's were overstepping their boundaries....lets remember what LEO stands for 'Law Enforcement Officer"....what LAW did the OP Break? None! As such where's the Probable Cause for stop/questioning?

    Stopping the guy that was OC is like randomly pulling over a car for suspicion of murder/car accident/running...just because he/she's operating a car...

    Its like a cop saying: "Because you're driving a car I suspect you've broken a law.


    "Because you're OC I suspect you've committed a crime."

    Without PC its an unreasonable/unlawful stop.

    Its BUNK!
  2. kermit315

    kermit315 Member

    Jun 20, 2007
    Pensacola, FL
    i dont think anybody was talking about breathalyzers. the issue at hand(at least now) is whether he legally would have had to produce ID in your state under similar circumstances.

    from what i have read posted, he would not have had to.

    just my opinion.

    also, if i could OC here, i would. I wouldnt need any other reason than i want to do it. trying to make somebody provide a reason for wanting to exercise a right is the same as making them ask permission to use it.

    you should never need permission to exercise a right.

  3. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Senior Member

    May 21, 2004
    "Land of (dis)Enchantment"
    The freedom to walk down the street while carrying out perfectly legal activity without the intrusion of law enforcement wanting to make sure that you are not up to mischief.

    It used to be that we were innocent until proven guilty. Now we need to prove that we are "worthy" of having a few privileges, never mind exercising rights.

    Sad that you don't see it.
  4. ScottS

    ScottS Member

    Apr 22, 2003
    Live Free or Die
    Jesus Christ, I've been painfully watching this, thinking you're going to come to your senses about this, but you're just not. So, you have to have your driver's license with you at all times, or you'll lose it? If you're swimming, and the cops say, "Show my your DL," you jump out of the water and then what? You don't have it to show to the officer, and you lose your driver's license? Yes, you give up your right to refuse a Breathalyzer--while driving, for God's sake. You think you can be sitting in a freaking restaurant, and they can come up and order you to take a Breathalyzer, and if you don't, they take your driver's license away?? How on Earth do you not get this?
  5. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 New Member

    Sep 27, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Arright sorry for the slow response here. But I wanted to answer some of the questions/comments posted on this thread and elsewhere, regarding my open carry incident.

    First, in response to the folks who are defending the police....I half agree with you. The police and trooper acted in a fairly restrained manner compared to what would happen in other states. This is because others have gone before me over the last couple years, and open carried at much greater risk. Now Manchester Police Department is fairly used to it. They were probably only there because the state trooper called them. I've sent notes to Manchester's Police Chief and to Colonel Booth, New Hampshire's head state trooper. The note to MPD praises two of the responding officers but includes constructive criticism. The note to Col. Booth praises Trooper Copponi, who in all fairness had only thirty seconds to make his stop decision....and refused to cross certain lines which a bad cop might have raced over. I also would like to mention something no one else has brought up: Copponi's course of action wasn't necessarily the easy way out. It may have been dictated partly by a willingness to risk his own well-being in what he e considered the pursuit of public safety.
    Courage, wherever it is suspected, should always be respected.

    Anyway, both notes urge both departments to relax about open carry, and they are attached below.

    With regard to the criticism of "Mr. Striped Shirt," who you see raising so much heck over my being stopped...There is a reason why he is so hostile to MPD folks. Only three people that I know of have the guts to demonstrate outside the hated "free speech zone" when Mr. Bush is here....and continue doing so even after they are informed it will result in their arrest. In 2006 Russell stood on a completely public street corner with an unremarkable anti-Washington sign....and MPD arrested him for it. Just because the Emperor was coming to town.

    His response in this video isn't precisely what I'd advocate. I do agree that you shouldn't bait officers or try and humiliate them. I'd rather win them over to our side, and I genuinely like most of them. It makes me uncomfortable that Trooper Copponi probably left the situation miffed at us; I'd rather see these things end in good feeling.

    But Russell has guts, and I appreciate him being there. You have to admit nearly no one would be talking about the video otherwise. Look at my other open carry incident, the one that went so amicably:


    Hardly anyone watches that. Hardly anyone debates the issues because of that video. In a sloppy irreverent way, Russell got more people talking about key questions:

    Does New Hampshire have a more restrained police community than other states? When is it appropriate to cooperate with police or give them information about yourself? What are the capabilities of New Hampshire's liberty community? Do those capabilities constitute a potential umbrella under which local freedom lovers may protect themselves against government abuses?

    How many freedoms do we have left in America? Do we have freedom of the press when some of the nation's least sadistic cops tell a professional videographer to stop filming them on a public corner? Do we have freedom of communication when my cell call is brought into question? Do we have freedom of assembly if police in the freest state can try and stop you from having more than three people standing on a corner? Do we have freedom to walk the streets without identity papers, and if so is that freedom exercised often enough to keep it secure? And lastly do we have freedom of self defense if we are questioned by police merely because of a lawfully borne firearm?

    In this brief video you see every one of those freedoms threatened, by some of the *least* bad cops in America, in full view of crowd and camera.

    Now...I'd like to respond to some of your questions and comments. One opinion runs something like this:

    "These cops were obviously entrapped. I don't believe these libertarian freaks just happened to be prepared for the stop."

    That kind of comment is the biggest backhanded compliment of the year... To reiterate: The video was not planned, no cops were baited or entrapped....the explanation for the rapid response and high quality of the video is not that hard to swallow.

    1) Free Staters meet up in Manchester every week
    2) They wear guns, often openly, to these meetings.
    3) If a cop drives by, they will see guns.
    4) If that freaks them out, they will stop one of us
    5) If the people inside the meeting see the stop, they will not cower but will go to the scene!
    6) Some of our participants carry video cameras. A couple of them are professional videographers. If they see something interesting happening...they will videotape it!

    It is true that Porcupine 411 is not yet fast enough to trigger a response this rapid...the people simply saw this event through the window of the restaurant and out they flew.

    However if you still think this was staged...research it. Most of the people who witnessed the actual event can be contacted...by you. Just post any questions you have, to forum.nhfree.com. If you don't trust the freedom lovers there, maybe you will trust our trolls.

    Another common response goes something like this: "Open carry is a bad idea because it just shows criminals where your gun is, and they might steal it."

    Tactically, I see where folks are coming from with this argument. However, suppose my goal is not tactical but political and social? Suppose I want to:

    1) Remind harmful criminals that Manchester is a heavily armed city, where many, many law abiding citizens are packing
    2) Inspire more New Hampshirites to open carry
    3) Continue the process of mainstreaming open carry, so that police continue to get more used to it. Yes, I know Russell didn't act very mainstream. But by and large MPD is much more calm about this now than they were in 2004...sometimes they're even supportive. This is because of nice people like Michael Peltier who went out and started DOING it.

    None of that is possible by carrying concealed...and for all you know...that Glock on my hip is just an empty decoration to divert thugs from the revolver on my ankle. Besides, there aren't very many thugs in Manchester.

    We have to go out, live as though we were free, and inspire others to do the same.

    I realize this sort of thing is controversial, but we don't need majority support for success. If this video alienates 70 percent of the people who see it but 1 percent are inspired to join up with us, or fight harder for their freedom, that is a win. If one freedom fighter moves to New Hampshire because of this video, that is a win. Virtually all that needs to happen for freedom to be re-established within America, is a couple thousand liberty activists moving to New Hampshire. Google the words "New Hampshire Liberty" and decide for yourself whether the two hundred fifty early-moving Free Staters have had a positive impact completely out of proportion to their numbers. Decide for yourself whether a number eight times that size would be decisive.

    Here's another response that sticks in my mind:

    "As posted before, The OP was in the legal clear. So should a black man eating at predominantly white eatery also be under suspicion because it is out of the norm? Or a black woman who dares to sit at the front of a bus? A person displaying an anti-war sign?"

    I've been hearing this comparison over and over again, between what we're doing and what the early civil rights activists used to do. It's always an honor to hear, and especially cool to hear it so much more as a result of this video.

    Yet another response...some folks say we shouldn't open carry because that might scare NH voters/lawmakers into outlawing open carry.

    There is some risk that the NH House could restrict our gun freedom slightly, but in New Hampshire, attempting to ban open carry would just backfire. The gun movement here is huge and powerful. 500 people turned out this year just to kill an anti-terrorist amendment to the concealed carry laws. And killed it was, right out of the chute. In 2005 the House decisively squashed a bill to ban guns in public schools. That's right...we remain one of the few states where a parent can lawfully wear a pistol to her daughter's classroom. Many of the reps and senators themselves lawfully carry guns with them to the legislature, as do their constituents.

    With regard to Porcupine 411 I'm hoping it can develop into a true private 911 type service for folks to report government-related emergencies. Help, I'm being pulled over...help, there are Marshalls at my door, etc. Right now it's a little slow for that but still impressive.

    Lastly, as an update...there is scuttlebut to the effect that MPD was not happy about the State Trooper making this stop. And there is other scuttlebutt to the effect that they are not happy with *us.* The restaurant/bar outside which this incident occurred...is expected to come under increased scrutiny. Not sure why MPD would want to go after a building when their quarrel (if any) is with me. But they are presumably aware that harassing a successful business treasured and frequented by hundreds of scrappy Free Staters, owned in fact by some of them....that would be a bureaucrat's nightmare. And free publicity for the bar.

    Anyway those are all my thoughts; as promised here are copies of my notes to MPD and NHDOS, neither of which generated a response.


    Sent by e-mail to MPD chief on aug 7

    Dear Chief Jaskolka: I wanted to express appreciation for officer J. Kelly's calm handling of my Saturday open carry incident on Elm St. The Sergeant who responded also conducted himself well, and I was happy to hear his point of view. Of course, I look forward to the day when open carriers are not stopped at all without probable cause. I assume this stop would not have happened were it not for the fact that a State Trooper was driving by.

    In my experience your officers have handled open carry well, so well in fact that I usually don't even bother getting their names. It's important for liberty lovers to keep perspective and remind ourselves that the MPD response is at least superior to the panic that would happen in most states.

    Open carry is an essential tool for citizens, as it puts fear into the hearts of harmful criminals...reminding them New Hampshire is a dangerous place to try and harm others.

    I do take exception to the fact that one of your officers tried to stop a man from videotaping him and, when he couldn't find more ways to exert authority over us, chose to go after a hapless group of car wash kids for posting a sign.

    If you are having a problem with litter, because of fallen signs or what not, call me at the number below, tell me which area you want cleaned and I will schedule a citizen trash cleanup.

    There has been some speculation among officers that we plotted this encounter, but that is not the case. Our people just tend to open carry on their way to meetings. Where there is a meeting there is usually a camera and a squadron of people looking out for each others' rights.

    Respectfully yours,

    Dave Ridley

    Note to head of state troopers
    Aug 8, 2007

    Dear Colonel Booth:

    Sorry for my slowness in getting this message to you. However I wanted to express my respect for trooper L.A. Copponi's calm handling of my Saturday open carry incident in Manchester. Although I object to police making stops of pedestrians simply because of open carry...I do recognize that trooper Copponi had under half a minute to make his stop-or-don't-stop decision. If he's anything like most cops, he probably does not deal very often with citizens who responsibly exercise their right to open carry. At least he approached the situation with an open mind.

    It's important for liberty lovers to keep perspective and remind ourselves that the NHDOS response is at least Superior to the panic that would happen in most states.

    Open carry is an essential tool for NH citizens, as it puts fear into the hearts of harmful criminals...reminding them New Hampshire is a dangerous place to try and harm others. It's not as useful for defense as concealed carry, but if we don't use this tool and exercise this right...we will lose it. More New Hampshirites are doing so, and your men will see more of us as time passes. Soon I hope you will come to see us as a routine thing.

    You may also be aware that I exercised another generally atrophied right during the stop, the right of a pedestrian to refuse police requests for identification cards. Again, I assume it's not super common for people to exercise this right, but that is why it is so important to exercise. It too needs to become more common. There are only a few rights left which government recognizes, thus we must exercise them well and often. Otherwise we'll lose what few of them remain.

    Respectfully yours,

    Dave Ridley
  6. Sniper X

    Sniper X Senior Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    New Mexico
    I like it

    I was once told by the owner of one of my two favorite gun shops that if I was going to open carry here in NM where it is ALSO legal to do so, that I should be "ready to be tackled by a cop"! WHAT! I asked him if he got this from LEO and he said no but felt they would tackle and ask questions later. I felt this was a very strange feeling on his part, but since I have known him since we were about 14 I asked him to clarify. He told me that police officers prefer those of us who did carry to carry concealed, which was still illegal at the time since we had no CCW then. I was floored! He said they prefer this because most citizens do NOT know it is legal to open carry here, and has been even before CCW so they call police if they see someone walking around with a holstered gun. This is of course BS in my opinion because I ALLWAYS open carry and NEVER am even looked at a second time by LEO.

    I asked if he thought for a second what I personally would do if tackled by cops while doing nothing against the law, and he said you would probably sue the city, and he laughed until he noticed I wasn't laughing because he was right.

    I think the guy in the video is both a hero of sorts, and lucky as heck because I feel if he didn't have the support of the others there, and the guy on the phone, and especially the guy with the video camera, he would have been put down and had to sue the police departments.

    I can Tell you I still open carry even though I hold a CCW but still never get a second look and have never been stopped or questioned as to why I have a gun.

    Once after being pulled over by a Texas State Trooper for doing 65 in a 60....yeah I know, he asked if I had a gun because I had a Black hawk holster on my hip. I said I did and it was locked in the center console because I was going back to NM from Texas, he asked to see the firearm, which I let him do, he called it in brought it back gave it back and handed me a ticket for expired insurance but said nothing but NICE GUN! about the firearm!

    It was a Springfield Champion all custom housed out....he liked it.

    the only thing I wondered about was his right to ask about the firearm, except under law I suppose the holster constituted probable cause for him to ask....does it in Texas? Is this kosher in Texas to ask a motorist about a firearm if there has been no complaint?

    Again to the poster, Kudos!
  7. Blackbeard

    Blackbeard Participating Member

    Jun 16, 2007
    Behind the Daley Curtain (IL)
    I'm no legal expert, but I believe he can ask anything he wants. We do still have mostly free speech in this country. You can ask him about his gun too.

    Come on, people, let's not get overly sensitive about what cops can ask you. Do you have to give him permission to run your plates to see if they're reported stolen? Check your license for oustanding warrants? Why would you object to him checking to see if your gun is stolen, too?

    When cops ask you stuff they're really looking for your demeanor as much as your answers. Same reason poker players ask each other about their hands -- to see if you're hiding something. I'm sure they stopped the OP because A) OC is unusual in that area, and B) to see if he had the demeanor of a man on his way to shoot someone. The "I don't have to show you ID" remark most likely did NOT eliminate B, so that's why it took longer.
  8. bkjeffrey

    bkjeffrey Active Member

    Aug 12, 2007
    Southern states
  9. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Senior Member

    May 21, 2004
    "Land of (dis)Enchantment"
    I guess that it is routine for Illinois police to stop people and question them hoping to discover a bad demeanor so that they can charge them with something when they have no probable cause that any crime has been committed, but in the free parts of the country this isn't the norm.

    Same thing goes for cops wanting to preempt crime by looking for bad demeanor. Just exactly what does a "man on his way to shoot someone" look like? Maybe Illinois police are mind readers, and can determine intent to commit crimes.
  10. coyote_jr

    coyote_jr member

    Jul 31, 2006
    Providence, RI
    this one is still going?
  11. Hammerxc

    Hammerxc New Member

    Oct 26, 2006
    Gods Country
    The legalist asks, Can I?

    The Libertine asks, Shall I?

    And the prudent man asks, SHOULD I?

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