This past Thursday, May 18, I had the pleasure of attending my first ever The Second Is For Everyone (2A4E) Diversity Shoot put on by Tony Simon. I had never attended one before but had heard it advertised from time to time on Gun for Hire Radio. This article is as much a personal, unpaid endorsement of the event as it is a recounting and memorialization of the fun time we all had.
For those that don’t know Tony, he is a United States Marine and strong believer in the 2nd Amendment for everyone, not just fat old white guys like myself. He hosts the 2A4E (2nd Amendment for Everyone) podcast and is a regular on several other popular 2A podcasts as well.
I had met Tony one time before this. At the time I didn’t realize he had a popular platform and this admirable initiative to spread the 2A gospel. I thought he was just a funny dude who liked to shoot. The first time we met, we were talking on the subject of police interactions and I mentioned that I would invoke the 5th Amendment and opt not to volunteer information to police. Tony is black and he told me I had “white superpowers”. I thought this was hilarious. He doesn’t take stuff too seriously and neither do I. I knew I was in good company. Later on, while listening to the Self Defense Gun Stories podcast, I heard Tony’s voice and name. It was then that I realized, “I just met this guy the other day!”
Anyways… I showed up to the event about 30 minutes late. The Diversity Shoot events are held in various locations so that people from all over New Jersey and surrounding states can attend. This night, we had attendees from NJ and NYC. This particular event was a little over an hour from my house at Recoil shooting range in Monroe, NJ. The facility was a beautiful, relatively new, shooting range.
When I arrived, I walked right into the classroom area Tony had set up. Everyone was busy eating (food is provided as part of the $20 ticket cost) and chatting amongst themselves. As everyone was eating, I had the pleasure of meeting one of our authors, John Petrolino, The Pen Patriot, in person for the first time.
Also in attendance were three members of CNJFO: David “Rosey” Rosenthal, Angelo Yacone, and Chris Wilson. Well, four members actually. I am also a member of CNJFO. The other three were there to help educate, instruct on the range, and be as helpful as possible. There were many people of varying gender, race, and ethnicity. As advertised, this really was a diverse crowd that showed up to hear the 2A gospel and shoot a wide variety of firearms. Some of the folks attending were new to shooting, some owned their own guns already, and some had government permission slips to buy firearms but had not yet done so for one reason or another.
Once everyone had a chance to eat, we got down to business. Tony stood up to address the group. He spoke about current topics such as safety, mass shootings, media dishonesty, gun control, and various statistics that are floating around out there.
What many people don’t know is that ALL gun control is racist. The nation’s first gun control laws were put into place to keep the newly-freed slaves from their 2nd Amendment rights. Just as suppression of the right to vote through the Three-Fifths Clause, poll taxes, literacy tests, and more were fundamentally racist and wrong, so too has been all gun control.
To that point, as a side note, as explained by openly racist New Jersey Assemblyman John McKeon, the state still believes that people in economically challenged areas, so-called “impacted communities”, shouldn’t be able to exercise or be trusted with their 2nd Amendment rights. As mentioned, all gun control is racist and they don’t even make a huge effort to hide that fact.
Recently, during a committee hearing (and subsequent hearings and later during a full Assembly voting session), in response to complaints about enormous increases in costs one must pay to exercise their 2A rights in New Jersey, Assemblyman McKeon made his ignorant views known:
Next to address the group was Rosey from CNJFO. He talked a bit about CNJFO as well as the ongoing litigation against New Jersey’s recently-enacted “Carry Killer” law. CNJFO is a party to one of now-consolidated lawsuits against the state. Koons v. Reynolds (CNJFO case) has been consolidated with the Seigel v. Platkin (ANJRPC case) suit and have been successful in putting most of the state’s new unconstitutional laws on hold.
After Rosey finished speaking, there was a raffle for some gun gear goodie bags. There was a variety of items given away and the gear was graciously provided by Aegis Gun Care and Hi Point Firearms.
At this point, Tony took control again. In what I can only describe as an impromptu session of standup comedy, Tony poked fun at pretty much every culture or race in the room, including his own. It was all done in a fun and light-hearted way, keeping us laughing at just about every stereotype we’ve ever heard of. Not a single feeling was hurt, everyone was laughing, and many even joined in on the humorous commentary. It felt like a group of old friends roasting each other. It was very disarming (pun intended) and honestly it just felt good to be in a room full of people that had a sense of humor and knew this stuff was funny and not to be taken to heart. Especially when the rest of the world has simply gone mad with political correctness.
On to the main event: it was time to head into the range to shoot some guns. There was a great variety of guns to choose from, including handguns chambered in 9 mm and .22, and rifles chambered in 9 mm, 5.56, and .223. There were several so-called “assault weapons” which assaulted nobody and merely poked holes in paper. All of the ammunition, as previously reported by John Petrolino on Bearing Arms, was supplied by Ammo Lab free of charge. They are supporting the event throughout 2023.
We hung out in the range shooting various firearms at paper targets for, what seemed like, one and a half to two hours. Regardless of experience level, absolutely everyone had a smile on their face. Due to thoughtful guidance by the volunteer range instructors, safety was adhered to at all times and a good time was had by all. After range time ended, we all got together for a big group photo.
Finally, the night was over. Tony Simon, John Petrolino, Rosey, Angelo Yacone, Chris Wilson, and I finished off the night in the parking lot over cigars. We must’ve hung out for at least an hour. I was the first to leave since I live over an hour away but it wasn’t easy to leave because we were all engaged in great conversation.
My favorite takeaway from this entire event is that its foolish to assume that we know what a particular person’s feelings on any given subject are, what their passions are, what they believe in, and what their priorities in life are. It’s very easy to judge a book by its cover. It’s safe to say that every one of us do it every day, whether we admit to it or not. By doing so, we unwittingly have fewer allies in the world than we would if we were just a little slower to assume. There’s alot of great people out there, we encounter them every day and never have a clue.