American Heroes

This category contains 65 posts

Rose Mofford RIP

roseRose Mofford, the last ‘beloved’ politician in Arizona (per Arizona Republic columnist Ed Montini), passed yesterday at age 94.

A Democrat, she spent her life in public service.  Born in Globe, a mining town to the East of Phoenix, she was an All-American softball player in high school, and turned down an offer to play professional basketball with The All-American Red Heads.  She married (and subsequently divorced) a Phoenix Police Captain.  They remained friends.

She became a secretary to the State Treasurer, then secretary to the Secretary of State.  Ultimately, she was elected to that office, then became Governor upon impeachment of embattled Governor Evan Mecham.

She chose not to run for office at the end of her term, and retired to private life. (above via Wikipedia)

She was famous for being professional, personable, and answering her own telephone.  And that ubiquitous beehive hairdo!

I had a run-in with her one day.  Or rather she with me. 🙂

I was at the Arizona Department of Transportation (this was during my career as a private investigator) and opted to cross Jefferson St. (a very busy thoroughfare @ 19th Ave. and Jefferson), by jaywalking!

Just before I reached the other side of the street, a car turned East onto Jefferson and began accelerating.

Into me!

I clapped my hands onto the hood to get the driver’s attention (and to pretend I could actually stop the car) and looked up in fear.

The driver was Rose Mofford!  She was Arizona’s Secretary of State at the time.  She smiled broadly at me, and mouthed ‘I’m sorry’.  I mouthed back,‘that’s okay’, and she drove on.

I understand she supported reasonable gun control (whatever that is).  Being a Democrat, I’m not surprised.

She remains a symbol for a kinder, gentler time in Arizona politics.

She will be missed.

RIP, Rosie!

Mike, I Salute You! RIP Sir!


Michael Brian Vanderboegh: July 23, 1952 – August 10, 2016

I didn’t ever meet the man, or here him speak.  But, when I became disabled and began blog surfing, I would occasionally stop by Sipsey Street Irregulars to see what he had to say.

At first, I was a bit shocked by his bluntness.  By the time I had begun my own humble blog eighteen months later, I had joined his ranks, at least philosophically.

I don’t think it was Mike who moved.

Here was a man who stood up for that which many of us believe.  Individual Liberty.  Not only stood up for it, but openly spoke of it.

Often to the confoundment of many controlling statists.

Even is his past few years, while illness ravaged his body.

Mike, I salute you!  RIP Sir!

3% Movement Flag

3% Movement Flag

(More from Ammoland Gun News.)

From my January post:

In his memory, and to assist Rosey:

Paypal to*
Check, money order, cash, etc. to Mike Vanderboegh, PO Box 926, Pinson, AL 35126.**

Thank you for them.

Today In History, Recent and A Few Years Ago…

Muhammad-Ali-quote-on-courageMuhammad Ali (born Cassius Clay) is one of my childhood heroes.  Not so much because of specifics (being a great athlete/boxer – which he was), but because he stood for something.  And if his goals were boasts, he surpassed them.

By taking risks.

In spite of being a member of a controversial religious sect, he gave millions to charities for all races.

One of his biggest supporters was broadcaster Howard Cosell, who was unashamedly Jewish.

Hardly following the party line of radical Islam there, Mr. Ali.  Good for you!

He passed yesterday from complications due to Parkinson’s disease.  Not a serene way to go.  Just short miles from a hospital wing bearing he and his wife’s name.  For treatment of Parkinson’s.

“I AM THE GREATEST!” he used to boast.

He was.


Today is the 27th Anniversary of the ending to the protests in Tianamen Square, Peking, P.R.C.  We all remember that famous photo of the guy and the tank.

Here it is, in a wider view:

a everyone-knows-the-photo-of-tankman-stopping-tanks-but-this-the-real-photo-s800x571-437607-1020

Makes me think of the force of unfettered government versus the individual.

I wonder if he had heard of Muhammad Ali?

(And, now for something completely different – as promised)
I would ask all of you bloggers out there to at least make the effort to post a link to


Even ONE of these heroes making this choice is unacceptable! (Day #2 of 22)

A Challenge

My good friend (and shooting buddy) Marlo challenged me to put something on my blog.  Normally, I wouldn’t pick up the gauntlet, but in this case, it’s too important not to!


9 of 22 — I’m doing ‪#‎22pushups‬ to raise awareness that American Veterans have been committing suicide at an alarming rate. I was called out by an elementary school classmate, a West Point graduate, and proud vet, Bill Nygaard I am again issuing a choice of challenges, either the 22 pushup awareness challenge OR donating 22 hours of service to veterans in any way you can. So, for the #22pushups, up next is… Kim Cox, Master organizer, fellow psychodramatist, and fellow happily married woman. (Modifiied push-ups model accepting help to reach your goals.)

If you accept, copy and paste this status to each of your videos. Video yourself doing 22 push-ups to your ability level & post the video to Facebook and other social media using the hashtag #22pushups. The goal is to raise awareness for our service members battling this demon.

In the alternate challenge, I challenge friend Guffaw in AZ to make 22 mentions of veteran services in his blog posts over the next 22 days using hashtags ‪#‎22kill‬ and #22pushups.

Please spread the word that veteran suicide is not the answer. A new video will be posted for each of the next 13 times, new people being challenged each time.

Thank you to Project Welcome Home Troops that does great work helping our veterans overcome PTSD.

 Obviously push-ups and Guffaw videos won’t be happening in this venue.  But I will make an effort to post regarding veteran’s services for the next 22 days.
And I would ask all of you bloggers out there to at least make the effort to post a link to


Even ONE of these heroes making this choice is unacceptable!



And, in case you forgot…


Nothing more need be said.

Except perhaps a silent prayer of thanks.


War ‘Winners’ Write Histories

from Brock Townsend:

“Contextualizing” American History

Few, if any, currently prominent historians voice unqualified objection to the destruction of Confederate monuments. The most tolerant among them instead suggest that the memorials should remain, but with new explanatory inscriptions offering “context”—a code word that simplifies to: South=Bad, North=Good.

Consider, for example, the contextual marker that might be added to Liberty Hall, former home of Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens. No doubt it would emphasize the racist remarks in his Cornerstone Speech. But I’d wager $100 against a good Cuban cigar that it would ignore his address to the Georgia legislature after the war when he urged the body to adopt laws to protect African-Americans “so that they may stand equal before the law” partly because “we owe [them] a debt of gratitude…”

More pertinently, adding additional perspective to Rebel memorials begs the question of whether the policy should also apply to Yankee monuments. Consider the Lincoln Memorial. A couple of months before he announced the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation on September 22, 1862 Lincoln met at the White House with African-American leaders and urged that blacks leave the country. He arranged congressional funding for their emigration.

Of course, those who win the wars write the history of said wars.
Would not Washington be viewed as a terrorist if Britain had won?
The difference being, of course, remains:  We are all Americans, North and South.

Political Correctness @ Arlington

(from Free North Carolina)
confed arlington

The PC police have found a new target.  Not satisfied with monuments and flags, the Maryland general assembly recently voted to alter the lyrics to the official State song, James Ryder Randall’s “Maryland, My Maryland.”  Lincoln apologist Christian McWhirter penned a piece for Time magazine that labeled the song “dissident.”  This is true if using the standard definition of the word, opposition to official policy, especially that of an authoritarian state.  Anti-Hitler Germans were dissidents.

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Sam Adams, and the rest of the founding generation were dissidents.  Anti-Lenin and anti-Stalin Russians were dissidents.  Demonstrators at Tiananmen Square were dissidents.  It seems dissidents are those usually on the right side of history.  Obviously McWhirter disagrees.

Gee.  Time magazine.  Who knew?

Pioneers, Geniuses And Leeches

Oh, my!

I was reviewing some old posts for inspiration, and a pioneer’s name leapt from the page.  We all are familiar with John Browning, Jeff Cooper and company, but I also remember others, perhaps less lauded…

Mel Tappan

Mel was an early (1970’s) survivalist, who wrote of prepping and related matters.  He, Jeff Cooper and others wrote of such things, when most folks were remembering their family’s bomb shelters of 10 years earlier, and pooh-poohing such concepts.

…He then wrote a monthly column on survival topics titled “Survival Notes” for Guns & Ammo magazine. Shortly before his death, he also wrote a few monthly columns as the Survival Editor for Soldier of Fortune magazine. Through these publications and his 1977 book Survival Gunswhich as of 2010 is still in print after more than 32 years – he became an influential spokesman of the “armed-defense” wing of the Survivalist movement. The back cover of Survival Guns quotes Laura Cunningham of The New York Times as describing Tappan as “The Survivalist voice of reason.” (Wikipedia)

He passed way-too-young at age 47 of heart failure.

Other pioneers and geniuses came to mind.

Jim Cirillo

Jim Cirillo was a noted firearms trainer and former member of the NYPD’s elite Stakeout Unit (often called the “Stakeout Squad”). He died on July 12, 2007 as a result of an automobile accident versus a semi tractor-trailer.

In his five years on the Stakeout Unit, from 1968-1973, he was involved in seventeen gunfights.

In more recent years, he was involved in firearms training for police and civilians, publishing books and videos on the subject through Paladin Press, and teaching classes at a number of private schools.

Cirillo also worked on bullet design, creating bullet noses designed to “dig into” a target rather than deflecting from them.  (Wikibin)

I’m fond of quoting him when the subject of handgun bullet stopping power is raised.  Jim said, “Stopping power begins at 12 gauge.”  With is real-life experience, I’m inclined to believe him.

Bruce Nelson

Bruce was a retired law enforcement officer, one of the top holster makers and leather craftsmen in the country. A renowned firearms and police officer survival instructor, Bruce was one of the founders of the International Practical Shooting Confederation and a well-know author, gun rights activist and community leader. (

Bruce had been a California narcotic’s officer who tired of the cheap leather crap being foisted upon him to use to carry his .45 automatic.  He solved the problem by designing (and later selling) a holster of his own design christened the Summer Special.  Later, he sold the design to Milt Sparks, who has been sellingsummer-special variants of the original design ever since.  Many holster manufacturers have copied it.

Bruce was married to firearms-activist (and later NRA president) Sandra (Sandy) Froman, a pioneer in her own right.

Bruce, too, passed at age 47.

When I originally was forming the idea for this post, I was going to also include people of the leech variety – the names of Karl Marx (who never worked a job a day in his life, and sponged off co-author Friedrich Engels) and Bernie Sanders (whose first paying job was at age 40 – helping folks apply for public assistance) came to mind.

Then, I decided against it.

Doing so would sully the name of such individual rights pioneers

Hell, it’s MY blog…

(FTC – Mel, Jim and Bruce imparted wisdom to me.  No money exchanged hands – except from me for holsters and magazines.  Karl and Bernie?  Not so much…)

The Money Face Kerfluffle

HarrietWell, reportedly it has been decided.

Andrew Jackson – (in the negative)  Indian fighter, racist, slave owner
(in the positive)  competent military leader (the Battle of New Orleans) survived an assassination attempt and beat the would-be assassin with his cane!  As President – NO FEDERAL DEBT, STOPPED THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE NATIONAL BANK!

is being replaced on the Twenty Dollar Bill by

Harriet Tubman – (in the positive) a slave who fought for freedom, used The Underground Railroad, humanitarian, suffragette and Union spy(!)

(in the negative) – ?

Of course, it’s stuff like this which keeps our minds off of ongoing war, terrorism, disease, the upcoming election (with no viable* candidates from either party)

At least that’s their plan.

(or as Iowahawk Twittered, “Founder of the Democratic party replaced by gun-toting Republican”)🙂

I remember a similar dust-up when Benjamin Franklin was replaced on the half dollar coin by JFK.  Franklin –  (in the positive) scientist, statesman, philosopher.  (in the negative)  womanizer.  JFK – (in the positive)  charismatic, anti-communist, conservative-for a Democrat.  (in the negative)  drug user, womanizer, in bed with the Mob.

*viable – in my view, taking the Presidential oath seriously, i.e.  “…preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”[

h/t Roberta


There Is No Joy In Mudville

Associate Supreme Court Justice Scalia has passed away.

R.I.P. Sir!

Having said this (from The Wall Street Journal)…

Justice Antonin Scalia

Associated Press

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who died Saturday at the age of 79, will be remembered as one of the court’s most influential, trenchant and controversial voices. Below are a few outtakes from some of the more influential and notable opinions from his storied, 30-year career on the court.

D.C. v. Heller (2008) By a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court struck down Washington, D.C.’s blanket ban on handguns, ruling for the first time that the Second Amendment confers a right to bear arms in one’s home. Justice Scalia wrote the majority opinion.

There are many reasons that a citizen may prefer a handgun for home defense: It is easier to store in a location that is readily accessible in an emergency; it cannot easily be redirected or wrestled away by an attacker; it is easier to use for those without the upper-body strength to lift and aim a long gun; it can be pointed at a burglar with one hand while the other hand dials the police. Whatever the reason, handguns are the most popular weapon chosen by Americans for self-defense in the home, and a complete prohibition of their use is invalid.

• Kyllo v. U.S. (2001) The court ruled that the government couldn’t use thermal imaging technology to detect a suspected marijuana-growing operation without a warrant. Justice Scalia wrote that the use of sense-enhancing technology not in public use to gain information within the home constituted a search under the Fourth Amendment.

We have said that the Fourth Amendment draws “a firm line at the entrance to the house…That line, we think, must be not only firm but also bright which requires clear specification of those methods of surveillance that require a warrant. While it is certainly possible to conclude from the videotape of the thermal imaging that occurred in this case that no “significant” compromise of the homeowner’s privacy has occurred, we must take the long view, from the original meaning of the Fourth Amendment forward.

• Printz v. U.S. (1997) The court held, 5-4, that a federal law requiring local law enforcement to conduct background checks on gun purchases was unconstitutional. Justice Scalia wrote that the federal government may not compel the states to enact or administer federal programs.

Congress cannot circumvent that prohibition by conscripting the States’ officers directly. The Federal Government may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command the States’ officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. It matters not whether policymaking is involved, and no case by case weighing of the burdens or benefits is necessary; such commands are fundamentally incompatible with our constitutional system of dual sovereignty.

• Vernonia School District v. Acton (1995) The court ruled 6-3 that public schools could randomly drug test student athletes. Justice Scalia wrote that the privacy interests compromised by giving urine samples under the district’s policy were negligible.

 Just as when the government conducts a search in its capacity as employer (a warrantless search of an absent employee’s desk to obtain an urgently needed file, for example), the relevant question is whether that intrusion upon privacy is one that a reasonable employer might engage in, see O’Connor v. Ortega, 480 U. S. 709 (1987); so also when the government acts as guardian and tutor the relevant question is whether the search is one that a reasonable guardian and tutor might undertake. Given the findings of need made by the District Court, we conclude that in the present case it is.

• RAV v. City of St. Paul (1992) Justice Scalia wrote the majority opinion in which the court struck down St. Paul, Minn.’s crime banning “hate-crime,” for violating the First Amendment’s free-speech guarantee.In so doing, the court tossed aside charges against a group of teenagers that burned a cross in the yard of an African-American family.

The dispositive question in this case, therefore, is whether content discrimination is reasonably necessary to achieve St. Paul’s [p396] compelling interests; it plainly is not. An ordinance not limited to the favored topics, for example, would have precisely the same beneficial effect. In fact, the only interest distinctively served by the content limitation is that of displaying the city council’s special hostility towards the particular biases thus singled out. [n8] That is precisely what the First Amendment forbids. The politicians of St. Paul are entitled to express that hostility — but not through the means of imposing unique limitations upon speakers who (however benightedly) disagree.

* * * *

Let there be no mistake about our belief that burning a cross in someone’s front yard is reprehensible. But St. Paul has sufficient means at its disposal to prevent such behavior without adding the First Amendment to the fire.

The Internet is rife with both praise and derision for this Justice.  I shan’t post the hateful texts here.  There is Great Fear amongst the conservative and libertarian elements of society that without his swing vote, and Constitutionally-measured opinions, that ‘we’ (civil libertarians, gun owners/carriers, and American Society at large) are doomed.  Doomed to the progressive, post-Constitution era of further governmental intrusion on rights, and final loss of the America in which we were raised.

His body wasn’t even cold, when The President announced he would find a suitable replacement, and (some) Republicans suggested The Senate block ANY appointment for the next eleven months (until the next President could be sworn in)!

In other words, politics as usual.

God Save The United States Of America (while I’m still allowed to post this!)

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…