“I had a dream! That all the people gathered to let the government know, we the people still are in charge.”

During this time in our country where it seems that fear has gripped the nation and I am sure many are stressed out, I had a dream last night I have to share.

I dreamed that there was a call put out all over the nation on social media and by word of mouth. The call was to peacefully gather at the local and state government seat all on the same day throughout the nation. Regardless of “stay at home” orders.

The local and state governments went on the offensive, threatening to arrest anyone showing up because they were violating the current “social distancing” rules and rule against gathering in groups larger than 10. Yet no one listened to them.

People got in their cars, got in their trucks, got on their motorcycles, whatever they had and on the day that was talked about, they all showed up.

At first some of the governments tried to have the police arrest those showing up before they could get with others, but soon the numbers were just too many for them to handle and they smartly gave up. Realizing that it was pointless.

People of all ages, walks of life and races showed up. They were friendly and talked of freedom and rights. The feeling was one of quite determination.

Once everyone had gathered people stepped up and spoke to the groups. About how we the people were the true government. How while we elected officials to represent us, we actually hold the real power over our lives. Some spoke of the Constitution and how it was the highest law of the land. How our founding fathers had written out the Bill of Rights to ensure that the Government did not take away those rights. How politicians have forgotten that they do not rule the people, they work for the people.

One vivid scene I remember from the dream was a person who shouted out to one of the local politicians, “You are supposed to fix those things that are wrong not create new problems!” and another shouted out to the local police who had been trying to arrest people and given up, “You are supposed to protect and serve, we will call you when we need you.”

The general feeling was one of empowerment and hope. After hundreds of thousands had gathered throughout the nation like this, they all went back to work and the lives they had before the nation was closed by the suggestion of doctors and politicians. Busineses ere reopened and people went about their business as they had before fear had gripped the nation. They were no longer letting fear rule the actions of everyone.

Yes they knew the chances they were taking, yet they accepted that and knew the possible consequences. One citizen even remarked “I would rather live free and as I was than live in fear of the possibility of getting sick.”

Some people chose to stay in their homes out of fear of the unknown. ANd that was fine. People were at least free to choose how to react.

I had a dream last night, and it was a wonderful dream!!

Citizens will not stand Idly by anymore!

In light of the recent events where law abiding, lawfully carrying citizens have saved several lives of police officers, and not to mention all of the lawful self-defense uses of firearms in the news, I thought of this article I wrote on my Firearms Instructor Facebook Page last year on July 19 th , 2016.

Now it seems kind of prophetic; An open letter to those that would harm our police officers in the United States, or our citizens.

To those that are considering doing harm to our men and women in blue, or the law abiding citizens that this country has, I have a word of advice for you. Make sure you have made arrangements for who should claim your body. This is not an idle threat but a promise, an oath that has been taken, and a lifestyle of pride and love of this country and all it stands for that is good.

I am one of tens of millions of Americans that would not hesitate a second to help out our officers on the streets if I see them in need. This includes most veterans, most retired police officers and other law enforcement, and just plain old good people this country has. I will not stop to grab my cell
phone to video what is happening if you are trying to harm law abiding citizens trying to mind their own business. I would be going to their aid, and that aid may be armed if needed. As a 35+ year veteran cop, who now teaches law enforcement recruits full time in an academy, I will not stand idly by and watch someone try to harm my former students and friends, and I have thousands of them. I carry a firearm ALL of the time. Even when you think I will not be. I also have access quickly to the same kind of firepower that you can get hold of, probably better. And I have trained for decades to use them, to stop people like you. And I like to think I am pretty good at it, since I teach others how to shoot.

You see what has happened is that with the recent ambushes by the cowards that murdered the innocent people in Florida, Texas, and other places, many of us who would do nothing rather than just be left alone and mind our own business are now watching our cop’s backs and watching out for our fellow citizens. Just the other day on my way to work, I saw two of my former students arresting a man on a busy corner in town. I pulled into the parking lot of the gas station they were stopped in, parked where I could see them on the other side of the parking lot, and began to watch those around the area, not the cops, but what was going on around them. Nothing happened thank goodness and I made it to work about 10 minutes later than normal, well worth it to me.

To all of the other people out there that want to do something to help out the thin blue line, take a look the next time you see cops on the street involved in something. Do not bother them, do not approach them, they are busy, but hang out nearby and watch the surroundings for them, if you see
something that is a danger to them or may be, let them know! If you happen to see a fellow citizen in need of help, don’t grab your phone to video it, do something about it. Stand up for what is right and what is good. If we don’t help each other who will? We have become a nation of cowards and it’s
considered OK to “stay out of it” even if someone is being seriously hurt or killed. Why? You afraid to get hurt? Then learn how to protect yourself and your family, it will be the best money you ever spent!

Let’s show these cowardly ambush murderers and terrorist that we will not stand by any longer and we will fight back! Will not run, or hide, but FIGHT! And when Americans start standing up for each other again, these things will not happen as much, and will not be as deadly as now. It is true that good guys with guns stop bad guys with guns, why do you think cops carry them?

Reading that now it seems like many other people in the United States felt the same way. You can find the original post here:
https://www.facebook.com/Chriswagonerfirearmsinstructor/posts/1625665824410244

“Are Concealed Firearms License holders more law abiding than the police? The answer might surprise you!”

From a 35+ year LEO and LEO trainer.

I want to take a few minutes to ask you, you the liberal, anti-firearm, anti-citizen self-defense, pro law enforcement people out there “do you trust law enforcement to protect you and your family from most threats?” I hope the answer would be yes. The vast majority of law enforcement officers are average Joe’s or Jane’s who have a family to support and are just trying to make it by doing what they feel is a job that is worth doing. Making everyone around them feel safer, be safer and if in the process they can
remove threats to society as a whole and lock them up, that’s a plus. Cops are for the most part really good intention-ed people. Yes, we have our bad apples, just like most professions.


Unlike some professions, people do not realize that when a cop misbehaves they can be punished more than the average citizen most of the time. Cops who do wrong on purpose are even fewer, but when caught they can be punished by their department, by the courts, and fined civilly in court also, losing their job is not unheard of either. All one has to do is look in the news for examples of cops that have done something wrong and been arrested or punished. In Florida we have the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission that governs all police officers in Florida at all levels. If a cop screws up in Florida they can have to “go before the board” and they can get anything from not guilty and no punishment to losing their police license for life. We try to do a good job of policing our own, and we like
to think we do a fairly good job of it.

But just how many cops really screw up and get in this kind of trouble? There were roughly 550 officers in Florida that were disciplined for some kind of offense in 2015. (FDLE/CJSTC Officer Discipline Report). So even with that many I still think that the men and women in law enforcement as a whole are good people and I when I call 911 I want one of the m to respond. So what does this have to do with anything? What could this possibly have to do with Concealed Weapons License holders or self-defense? Well, you see many of the arguments that you hear that oppose things like Campus Carry and Open Carry are that there will be all kinds of people waving guns all over the place. People will be getting in shoot outs left and right and God forbid we pass Campus Carry, all of our drunken “children” in college
will be shooting it up at frat parties! I have to laugh when I hear people say how all these problems and others will happen. What they fail to do is realize that the citizens that have gotten a concealed carry permit are even more law abiding than the police officers they call for help. In fact, not just more law abiding, but by a FACTOR OF 6 TIMES MORE LAW ABIDING! What? You mean that concealed firearms license holders are more law abiding than our cops? The simple answer is yes, by far. After reading the
above information on our police officers and their discipline, we looked at the number of officers that were disciplined for committing a crime that would result in their certification as a police officer being revoked verse concealed carry firearms license holders and how many of those have had their CWL taken away because they committed a crime. And what we found was very surprising. CWL holders are 6 times LESS LIKELY to commit a serious crime than the police officers you trust with your families’ safety
and even your life if need be!

So why are so many of the anti-gun types so fearful of those that carry firearms lawfully? When those that do so are even ore law abiding than the police officers they trust their lives and the lives of their family members to? It’s because they do not look at the entire set of facts before making a decision on something. I would be willing to bet that CWL holders are one of THE MOST law abiding demographics in the country. Here is a group of people that have gone through background checks, spent money, been fingerprinted, sworn that they do not abuse drugs or alcohol among some things. How many of your friends that are not CWL holders can you claim you know their back grounds are clean?

I find it seriously flawed logic and thinking when a business owner posts a sign on the front of their business saying that they do not want lawfully carrying and licensed firearms owners in their stores. First any of their customers with a CWL have been screened as mentioned above, what can they say about their other customers? In addition, the business owner is announcing to the criminal world that the chances of one of the customers in the store being armed and able to fight back is slim. Better for the
criminals don’t you think? Might as well post a sign that says, “Criminals Welcome, no one here will fight back or shoot at you, so feel free to rob us!” Instead some businesses have gotten smart and posted pro CWL signs, even going to the point of offering discounts to CWL holders to attract more of them. Why? Well one it shows solidarity with the segment of people that believe in your rights, but even more important, it’s a warning to the criminal element that “Our customers may be armed, it even a good
chance they are, and if you try to rob us, you may very well be shot!”


I know which store I am going to spend my money in. And maybe if the business owner thought it out a little more, they might not be so quick to alienate the 2.0 MILLION CWL holders in Florida (as of Dec 2019)!

It’s time for Law Enforcement to take a stand with the law-abiding firearms owning citizens of this country.

As many of my readers know I am a 35 year veteran sworn law enforcement officer who retired at the rank of Commander and more years after that training cops. I can tell you that a large majority of cops are strong supporters of citizens rights to be armed. I am also a U.S. Army veteran of the 3rd Infantry Division. Contrary to the few incidents that make the news or social media most of law enforcement supports the citizens right to self-protection and to being armed. I have had citizens come to my aid more than once when I needed back-up and none was around, and I was thankful for their help.

But there is rapidly coming a time in this country when law enforcement as a whole may need to finally take a stand with the citizens and stand up for the Constitutionally protected right to “keep and bear arms” that seems to be under attack.

In VA. there are many Sheriff’s and Police that have taken a stand with the citizens they are sworn to serve. This is a good sign, but I do not think it is going far enough. We need a national push, and national movement in law enforcement to stand up against further restrictions on a citizens right to keep and bear arms. The second amendment is for all citizens, even law enforcement. Citizens in several states have even gone so far as to save officers lives using a firearm to stop attacks on officers.

Virginia sheriff: We’ll deputize law-abiding citizens to counter state Dems’ gun control ‘overreach’

Think for a second why many firearms laws exempt law enforcement from the restrictions placed on the average citizen. The legislators and some figure heads in law enforcement will tell you its because police are highly trained in the use of firearms and can be trusted to have firearms. Well that is not exactly the truth. If you look at the training of many law enforcement agencies throughout the country you would be astonished at how little training they actually get. In the State of Florida for example officers are only required to qualify with their service firearm every two years! While some agencies do qualify more than that there are agencies out there that only shoot their firearms every two years. Now that does not make them “highly trained” or better trained even than most firearms owners. I know for a fact that our local agencies offer officers free time on the range every month to practice if they want, and yet out of almost a thousand officers and deputies, very rarely (one or two maybe a month) would take part in the offer.

After retiring from law enforcement training, I began teaching civilian classes at a local gun range and found to my very pleasant surprise that many firearms owners shoot as much if not more than most cops. Sure, there are some in each group that train a lot and some that train very little. Point being that on an average I have to say from personal observation police are no more well trained in firearms than most firearms owner citizens.

So why do legislators seem to always include exemptions for law enforcement in most firearms bills and restrictions then? Well they will say it’s for public safety. But an officer’s home collection does nothing for public safety. Only the officer’s duty firearms while they are working and maybe their off-duty firearm (if they carry one, I know many that do not). The reason that they include these exemptions is because they know that if law enforcement had to abide by the same laws and rules as citizens the cops would be in an uproar and fight any more restrictions. Imagine if law enforcement officers’ personal firearms were going to be banned just like they are threatening citizens firearms. What if law enforcement was required to keep any “assault weapons” (before you scream at me I know there is no such thing, I’m using the anti-rights groups words) at the station and check them out only when working. What of they were only allowed the same magazine capacity that the legislature is trying to place on citizens. I don’t think they would like it much and you would hear a huge cry from the police unions and officers themselves. Now do not misunderstand me, I think that ALL law-abiding people should have a right to those things, not just law enforcement. And I know some will say, and I agree, law enforcement does need these things since those are the same weapons they encounter criminals already using. Being at least as well armed as the criminals is a necessity for law enforcement, why is it not for the citizens who will encounter the criminals before the cops do?

I teach the police recruits that I have in the academy that the golden rule of law enforcement is to treat every person (good and bad) the way they would want another cop to treat their family member if they were in the same situation. Cops need to remember that these laws and exemptions affect their families and friends who are not cops, and everyone else.

In closing let me point out that I am pro law enforcement and know most are great, brave, decent people trying to make the areas they live in just that much safer, but I also know we (LEOs) see the worst that society has to offer and sometimes forget that there are millions of times more good people out there than criminals. If we remove the exemptions for law enforcement from the firearms laws, then I think we might see much different reactions from the law enforcement world in opposition to any more restrictions. Maybe even they might stand with the citizens and require the law makers actually follow the Constitution and remind them they “shall not infringe” on their right to “keep and bear arms”, both citizens and cops. Virginia law enforcement seems to have figured that out.

Newsweek Outright Lies to the American People about Firearms Deaths!

Why am I not surprised that another supposed “news” source would publish a article “STUDY: U.S. GUN DEATHS SURGE, EXCEPT FOR TWO STATES WITH RESTRICTIVE GUN LAWS – BY ASHER STOCKLER ON 10/8/19” that is not only full of falsehoods, but the headline itself is an outright lie.

Is it any surprise that the American people no longer trust “news” sources like Newsweek? When supposed news sources publish such blatant lies about a topic rather than take 5 minutes to actually research reliable sources, you get results like this:

Screen grab from Newsweek.com

Now if you read that headline you would think they at least were telling you the truth. But would it surprise you if I told you that according to the FBI “2018 Crime in the United States” firearms murders went down the last two years? Firearms murders have decreased since 2016. 2018 was lower again from 2017. So why would Newsweek want to mislead or lie to the American public? Well of course we know why, they want to influence the public into thinking there is a “surge” or “epidemic” or “crisis”. When in reality the only one of those is in the minds of those who manufacture these claims.

From: FBI “2018 Crime in the United States” report.

According to the FBI homicide data, murder over all is down again also in the US. That’s great news so why not share that good news? Isn’t murder being down a good thing? Oh that’s right if they admitted that it would make things like “gun control” the “assault weapons ban” and other things pointless. Well they are pointless.

Here is the homicide rate per 100,000 people in the US over the last 48 years. Notice anything? You can easily see that the Murder rate was much higher from about 1998 and prior. After the rate started dropping in the nineties it has stayed pretty stable until about 2008 when it dropped a little more. With the mass murder in 2016 it climbed but still not to previous levels. And now it has dropped again to 5 murders per 100K like it was back in 2009. Again it is still far lower than in the past prior to 1999.

Graphic by Down Range with Chris Wagoner. (chriswagoner.us)

So one has to also consider this. We are a nation of 350+ MILLION people. And a nation with hundreds of millions of firearms, some estimates are even more firearms than people. If firearms were the issue would we not have far more firearms murders than 10,265 out of 350+ MILLION people with all those firearms in the US? Of course we would. This is a very simple way of showing it is not the inanimate object that is a problem, but the person behind it. Just like it is the driver behind the wheel of a car driving DUI and not the car. It is obvious when you see that “hands and feet”, “Blunt objects” like clubs and hammers, and even “knives and cutting instruments” are used to murder far more people than those “assault rifles” that many say are the biggest threat to people these days.

So to Newsweek I make this challenge, if you want to put anyone up for a debate live online, I will gladly take you up on ti. Subject? The real numbers behind firearms, murder and fake crisis you are trying to manufacture.

I know they won’t take me up on it, but it’s fun to hope! Stay safe out there.

Background Checks and Red Flag laws and more laws would not have stopped Texas or Ohio Murderers.

So now that a bit more information on the murderers in those two incidents is coming out it is time to point a few minor things that those who are shouting “we must do something” and “it’s all President Trumps fault” fail to see or want to have pointed out since it will contradict their point of view.

So now that a bit more information on the murderers in those two incidents is coming out it is time to point a few minor things that those who are shouting “we must do something” and “it’s all President Trumps fault” fail to see or want to have pointed out since it will contradict their point of view.

First, there has been a cry for universal background checks for a couple of years. After every mass murder that uses a firearm, there is a cry for “universal background checks”. But what many who are for them don’t want to be said and will try and shout down anyone that dares to bring it up is that many of the mass murderers passed background checks to get the very firearms they used. The most recent two shootings, one in El Paso Texas and the other in Dayton Ohio both passed background checks. So what good would UBC’s do then if mass murderers with obvious questionable backgrounds can still pass them? When put that way kind of sounds stupid doesn’t it?

Then there are the “Red Flag” laws that everyone is touting as part of a possible solution. The only problem is not all of these laws are created equally. Some states, like my own of Florida, have already enacted these types of laws and guess what? They have found they are abused and were not thought out very well. Many states laws do not have any kind of due process written into them. You know that pesky thing called your right to due process under the law. Sound familiar? Anytime that the Government wants to take away a persons property or right (owning and possessing a firearm is both of those) they should have to go before a Judge, and have a chance to defend themselves in a court of law. Our system was founded on that very principle. Circumventing that now for firearms can and will lead to further infringements. Don’t get in an argument with a vindictive ex-spouse or such, all they need do is call the police, tell them you own guns and made threats. No need to substantiate it and prove it, you have to prove you did not. Isn’t that twisted around from what our system is supposed to be like?

And for those crying that we have to do something. Why? The Murder rate is actually down by >40% since 1993. People are waking up all across this great country and realizing that self-defense and defense of your family is your responsibility, not the government. The last three mass murders, Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton all took place in or as people exited a gun-free zone. Read this excerpt from the El Paso murderer’s supposed manifesto and you see that they (the mass murderers) think about this:


Attack low-security targets. Even though you might out gun a security guard or police man, they likely beat you in armor, training and numbers. Do not throw away your life on an unnecessarily dangerous target. If a target seems too hot, live to fight another day.


So what would have stopped him? More security? More police in the area? Why do you think they do not attack police stations or federal buildings or other hardened targets? Because the chances of being shot before they can cause much carnage is greater. People wonder why no one in Texas was carrying (big state for carry rights and laws) but all one need do is look at the Walmart and the demographics of the area and you will see why. The Walmart was a posted “gun-free zone” and in Texas, if posted properly with 30.05, 30.06 and 30.07 signs, it makes legal carry in the establishment illegal. So again law-abiding citizens are disarmed, and the mass murderer could care less and murdered 22 people, AND NOT ONE WAS LEGALLY ALLOWED TO DEFEND THEMSELVES! Does that not sound wrong to you? Obviously, it worked in the murderers’ favor.

And last of course is blaming the current President for these shootings. People say it is his “message” that caused the murderers to go out and kill (even though the murderer in Texas made it clear it was not) like he ordered them to go out and kill people. If this is the case why did he post tweets in support of certain specific Democratic candidates before the murderers? Shouldn’t we blame them then instead? Of course not. You don’t blame the actions of a psychopath or sociopath on others. You blame the person themselves.

So let’s just stick to the facts. We now have a mass murderer who clearly said that they pick “low-security targets” that have little chance of them being confronted or engaged by armed resistance. Maybe we should listen to him and use that against the next one? Self-defense and defense of your family is your responsibility and not the governments. Police (I was one for 38+ years) only come when called. You have to be alive to call them. And why do you call them? Because they bring firearms to the scene to confront the armed attacker. Would it not be better to not have to wait and be at the mercy of these deranged individuals? When most mass murders are over in minutes and it takes law enforcement minutes to get there, what do you do in the meantime? Hide and hope not to die? Sorry, not in my nature.

So I guess what it all boils down to is the cry from those wanting something done, and something is done now, just what do you propose that would have stopped any one of the last 10 or 20 mass murderers over the past couple of years? Please give us a solution or idea. Since Murder is already illegal and carries the stiffest of penalties in some places (death) and that does not seem to stop them, please don’t propose a law that only disarms more law-abiding citizens. Let’s hear some concrete thought out helpful ideas and stop playing the blame game, blaming President Trump, blaming guns, blaming poor mental health screening, but not blaming the real root causes. Those are for another article.