It’s November 22, 2021, and your humble scribe is at a rare loss for words.

I’ve been listening to the final arguments in the case of the death of Ahmaud Arbery. Folks marching outside the courthouse there with AR15s…anyone getting a little déjà vu? The judge has just ordered the bailiffs to move the jury from a windowed deliberation room to one deeper inside the building and outside line of aim sight.

I think I’ll hold off on commenting on this trial until after the verdict. I’ll explain why then.

Today marks the 58th anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy.  Last time I mentioned that here I got a flood of nasty stuff from assassination conspiracy theorists. And if I say again, “The evidence shows Oswald killed him, so get over it,” well…

Getting ready for Thanksgiving, as I hope all y’all are.  We are usually part of a Thanksgiving dinner where open carry is welcome, and barbecue guns (fancy special-occasion firearms) are the order of the day.  This year, there will be guests of mixed political persuasion and that may not go over well.  I might just carry something fancy anyway, just because, but discreetly concealed…


  1. One comment on the JFK assassination. It would go a long way to dismiss these “theories” if the government would release the files on it as required. I don’t care, I agree that we know what happened. But government transparency is an excellent disinfectant to these conspiracy theories.

    • Whitney P,

      If the government released the files you want, would they have a lot of redactions? Could they be forgeries, even? Just because the government says it has released some files, doesn’t mean that we can trust them to release true files that have not been tampered with or altered in some way.

      • Hugh McDonald’s “Assassination in Dallas” and the James Files narratives on the Internet, combined with former MN governor Jesse Ventura’s investigations, are the three things that together have impressed me the most. Whatever the full truth is, it is hard to believe the official government accounts. Ventura, an expert shot himself, went to great lengths to prove that Oswald could have shot with fine accuracy, and found it impossible. Plus several shots heard by witnesses. Give thanks for future clarifications!

  2. “This year, there will be guests of mixed political persuasion and that may not go over well.”

    God help you.

    I think I remember it was you (might have been another writer, but I think it was you) saying something to the effect that “Oswald killed the President of the United States with a gun bought from Pepsi”… or something like that. (The rifle was bought from a company “wholly owned” by Pepsi.)

    I live in the People’s Republik of Illinois, so walking around with a BBQ gun, openly on my hip, is just out of the question. God bless Texas.

    • Heck, Russ, the Evil Princess and I had an open carry wedding in Chicagoland. The key is doing it on private property.

  3. Unfortunately we are slowly caving due to “mixed political persuasion”, by allowing them to set the agenda. As they continue to redirect the news, or narrative, we are slowly losing the war. They in turn, are advancing towards their objective.

    • You could. You sure should. Even today there’s lots for you all to thank God for. It’s not an American idea…and a good helping of home made cranberry sauce and squash casserole would be good for you.

      • echodeltacharlie (a.k.a. EDC),

        You are correct, if I am not mistaken. I think I remember some days of Thanksgiving mentioned in the Old Testament, so thanksgiving is pre-American. Also, that first American Thanksgiving, in 1621, was celebrated by Brits anyway. The Pilgrims came from Great Britain, even though they had also lived in Holland, and they were British Colonials. Don’t forget the pumpkin pie!

  4. Something I came across years ago that stayed with me was a quote about Thanksgiving. If I ever knew the author of these words I have long since forgotten. At a time in our nation’s history when the founders of this country were digging more graves than building houses they still saw fit to take a day to give thanks.
    Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

  5. Wishing you a joyous Thanksgiving my old friend. I lost your email when computer died shortly after Betsy and I got remarried. I’ll always treasure your kindness and encouragement through the darkest of times.

    Email me sometime.


  6. Happy Turkey Day. I still have an old article you wrote about Oswald. I always recall your analysis esp that LHO was left handed.

  7. Thank you Mas. I appreciate all you do and your perspective. In a previous career I worked with a well known forensic firearms examiner who, along with his father (a world known firearms examiner), studied the Kennedy assassination for some TV show. They came to the same conclusion. Have a great Thanksgiving!

  8. Carry on Mas.
    I know of a certain 1911 with mammoth ivy grips, a touch of gold inlay and knife with mammoth ivy grips a couple hours from you.

    Never been holstered or fired. An exception could be made for you! 🙂
    Though it might haunt us if not open carried. (Methinks mammoths were not known for hiding, lol)

    A Happy & Merry Thanksgiving to you, the Evil Princess and family.

  9. Happy Thanksgiving! My day will be spent with shooting friends and I bought a Let’s Go Brandon hoodie for the occasion. Only it uses the original chant 🙂

  10. Thank you Mas, best to you and yours.

    PS – “The evidence”? Haven’t you read The Medusa File, by Craig Roberts? Craig was in HS at the time of the assassination, he went on to serve in the military, and then after he came home he became a LEO. He automatically bought into the official verdict; but that was before he had an epiphany of sorts when he visited the kill site while at a LEO conference in Dallas. You’re a thinking man Mas, you owe it to yourself to read Craig’s works. By all means disregard others, but give this man a chance.

    • If someone could build a time machine, it would be interesting to travel back to the early 1960’s before the JFK assassination and set up a shooting competition between Lee Harvey Oswald and Carlos “White Feather” Hathcock using the rifle that made them (in)famous. The latter would have an edge in accuracy, but not in speed, and Hathcock’s Winchester Model 70 was much superior to Oswald’s under $20 surplus Italian M91 Carcano rifle.

      • An interesting, thought-provoking comment, Tom606.

        Oswald vs. Hathcock? A Carcano (in 6.5 Carcano loaded with mediocre tumbling dice) vs. premium quality Winchester (in Rem 30.06 and later Win .308)? A man of solid substance and disciplined, brilliant sniper vs. a. . .well, Oswald? No mas! (Poor pun–but no disrespect intended.)

        All the best and a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING, Tom606.

        PS: (I resided in VA Beach for a decade when Carlos Hathcock also lived there, but I didn’t know it at the time. Had I known it, I’d like to think I would have made an annoyance of myself and sought him out–very carefully–just to say thanks and in hopes that he would have given me a bit more time than just the time of day, although he would certainly have had no reason to do so.)

  11. Maasd,
    I hope you and yours have a safe and enjoyableThanksgiving!! Thanks again for your knowledge regarding the matter of carrying and the safe use of firearms.
    Dawn and Brian

  12. Sounds like an opportunity for a fancy handgun concealed, but a fancy knife to make up for it. After all, that turkey is not going to carve itself… Happy Thanksgiving!

  13. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Yours Mas, thank you for your service and all the wonderful articles and writing over the
    years !

  14. Mas,
    After this long, and with the way our government is now, I would say that the least of our worries should be the shooter of JFK. Oswald seems likely to me, knowing how conspiracy theorists can make just about anything sound shady.
    For the rest of this week, until next, lets just remember the blessings that we have here in America. There are damn few other nations that I would want to move to, or would take my family to. May your celebrations be merry, and your hearts be light.

  15. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Miss Gail.
    Don’t conceal it flaunt it!
    Doing so in a polite and respectful manner may help for the other side to see we are not all blood thirsty knuckle dragging savages.

  16. Happy thanksgiving to you Mas, Gail and all the people that post their thoughts here.
    Mas, I love that 1911 at the beginning of your blog. Would you take $500 for it?
    Everyone stay safe!

  17. The “fanciest” gun I own is a Ruger Lightweight Commander (no, it’s not really fancy but it sure is pretty).

    Happy Thanksgiving 🦃 to all of y’all.

  18. Happy Thanksgiving, and for what it’s worth, I remember November 22 as St. Cecilia’s Day, the patron saint of music, always playing the wonderful Ode on St. Cecilia’s Day by Henry Purcell. Handel also did a nice ode.

    Just to show that I have other uses for November 22.

    When I lived in Boston, I rebelled against T-day and went to a Pakistani restaurant, settling for chicken vindaloo, curry, and a mango milkshake.

  19. Happy -belated- Thanksgiving to you & yours Mas.

    And I hope your barbeque went well. One of the things about modern discourse – and while the internet is factor, I’m not sure it’s entirely to blame – is that people seem to only see the worst in people who don’t 100% agree with them. It would be nice to think that people of differing views can enjoy themselves, and each others company, in a shared celebration.

    Like I said, I hope your barbecue went well.

    • Fruitbat44,

      People can tolerate one another, and get along quite well, if one of them doesn’t want to force the other to live a certain way.

  20. Speaking of open carry at Thanksgiving dinner, I am reminded of the First Thanksgiving children’s books that my girls had. They have probably all been eliminated now but the pictures showed open carry by both Pilgrims and Indians. Blunderbuss and sword for the Pilgrims and bow and war club for the Indians. It was all peaceful of course.

    I am pretty militant about such things but I have never carried a slung rifle to the dinner table.

    • Friend Richard, you do not apparently live in Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Oakland, Portland, San Francisco, or Seattle? Come to think of it, was the first celebrated American Thanksgiving at or near Jamestown? Looking it up.

  21. Yes, good idea not bringing up the JFK cold case.

    At the risk of sticking my nose where it does not belong, that beautiful 1911 in the pic would make for most fashionable BBQ attire, handsomely displayed from hip or chest. (You could tell the mixed-up attendees among your mixed company that it is merely an old cigarette or charcoal lighter, a novelty item from years past.)

    In spite of the challenges presented by events during the past few years (or insert your preferred time span) we certainly do have much for which to be so very thankful, and moving forward, I hope the more optimistic side of me will be able to repeat that sentiment for years to come.


  22. Just reviewing the whole humdinger histories of the Plymouth Colony and Jamestown, too. I, along with millions of other possible descendants, supposedly had a ancestor who landed with the Mayflower. Looks like the Puritan emigrants are most tied to the Thanksgiving feast. Glad somebody showed gratitude. And nice to feel a personal tie to it. I am totally awed by the amount of history-touring that can be done. Thinking about going Jack Reacher myself.

    • Went concealed this time. About half or more of the folks present were carrying…only one open-carried…and no one cared.

      • Mas,
        That gives me hope that Illinois may one day join the United States.

        Give my best to the Evil Princess and I wish you both a safe and happy Christmas season.


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