What Do Open Carry Texas And Cop Block Have In Common?

Kory Watkins, coordinator for Open Carry Tarrant County poses for a portrait holding his Romanian AK 47, Thursday, May 29, 2014, in Haltom City, Texas.  (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Kory Watkins, coordinator for Open Carry Tarrant County poses for a portrait holding his Romanian AK 47, Thursday, May 29, 2014, in Haltom City, Texas.
(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Some time back, I took a lot of grief for defending an Oklahoma Highway Patrol captain who had his words twisted and taken out of context by a number of websites, including the Huffington Post. One of the things that I pointed out is that organizations like Cop Block and Free Thought Project use any incident with police (real or imagined) as part of an extreme anti-government agenda.


In the story I received a ton of negative feedback for, an Oklahoma Highway Patrol captain had addressed concerns about safety when dealing with law enforcement, and then two parts of his talk were spliced together to make it seem like he was saying that the best way to protect yourself from the bad eggs who wear a badge was to not break the law in the first place. At least one individual from Cop Block (which describes itself as “a decentralized project supported by a diverse group of individuals united by their shared goal of police accountability”) angrily emailed me, and defended his distortion of the captain’s words. In other words, he was perfectly okay with trying to smear an innocent officer as part of his agenda which obviously seemed to have nothing to do with accountability.

Now here’s a story which both illustrates my previous assertion that some members of Cop Block are anti-government extremists, and also shows that there are ulterior motives beneath the surface of their activism. Do keep in mind that I am not necessarily arguing for or against law enforcement here, but merely pointing out what’s going on. This article from Free Thought Project popped up in my Facebook feed today and a name instantly jumped out at me; see if you recognize him as well.

A video submitted to the Free Thought Project by a cop watching group out of Texas, highlights the importance of filming police.

Kory Watkins, with North Texas Cop Block and the Peaceful Streets Project go out almost every day of the week and perform an important role of holding police accountable.

On Friday, at approximately 3:00 pm Watkins was out with his fellow cop watchers in Arlington. Watkins tells the Free Thought Project that Sam Houston High School had just let out and police were on the scene because there had been a school fight.

When Watkins begins filming we can see the police detaining a young black man. He was being detained because officers said he had warrants. However, after this incident, Watkins tells us that he confirmed with the young man, and he did not have any warrants, nor did he have anything to do with the fight. (Source)

Kory Watkins, does that name sound familiar to you? If you said that’s the dude who looks like a younger, slimmer version of Quentin Tarantino who likes to carry assault rifles into grocery stores just in case he’s attacked by a pack of rabid wolves in the produce section, you’d be right. If you said the guy who was part of an armed group who stood outside a restaurant that the gun control advocacy organization Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America was holding a meeting in, you’d also be right.


Now here’s the part that I find perplexing; I’ll often see people sharing links from Cop Block or Free Thought Project highlighting the latest real or inflated story about an abuse of power by law enforcement. At the same time, they’re also sharing stuff from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America about the extremists in organizations like Open Carry Texas, without ever realizing they’re promoting some of the same folks they’re also condemning.

While I believe every police officer should have to wear a body camera through the duration of their shift and filming officers performing their duties is a great way to add an additional level of accountability, that’s not what Kory Watkins and others like him have as a goal. They aren’t trying to end police brutality, they’re trying push the line as far as they can to see if they can force reactions out of officers that they can then take to court. The mission of Cop Block and others like them is to undermine and reduce the effectiveness of law enforcement instead of fixing the problems that sorely need addressing, and they want you to unwittingly help them destroy the system instead of fixing it.

In the wake of the grand jury’s decision in Ferguson, more and more attention will be paid to the issues of racial profiling, police brutality and the need for accountability. These are things that we do need to address and we do need to be passionate about – but let’s not fall into the trap of advancing the agendas of those who seek to misuse your good intentions.



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  • Rob Banks

    I am “liberal” according to teabaggers. But I do not want gun rights taken away. I can see adding an insurance requirement and training requirements etc, but people should be allowed to own guns. And trust me. If the GOP ever take both houses, the SC and the Whitehouse? The first thing they will do is ban guns. Yup. You better believe that folks.

    • Charles Vincent

      Only a few things here.
      1) Insurance is a bad idea period
      2) Training and education a good idea and a good start for mitigating the problem
      3) You say “allowed” as if its not a natural right and that we need permission. The GOP did and it netted us the FOPA act of 1986 I believe.

      • Rob Banks

        “Insurance is a bad idea period”
        Easy to say. Why?

      • Charles Vincent

        2a is a right not a privilege. Perhaps we should force insurance for other rights as well, the first amendment for example… see the problem?

      • Rob Banks

        The insurance does not follow the gun. it follows the owner. As in liability. Just like a car.

      • Charles Vincent

        Your other post is unavailable to comment on so I will re post it so my reply below makes sense.
        “Rob Banks–> Charles Vincent 2 minutes ago
        The insurance does not follow the gun. it follows the owner. As in liability. Just like a car.”

        You missed the point driving a car is a privilege not a right, we don’t need insurance for rights. Secondly this insurance ponzi scheme would give the government a backdoor registry of firearms and fatten up the
        1%er’s pockets. So NO its a terrible idea.
        FYI firearms registries are Illegal Under Federal Law just saying.

    • TigiOma

      Hmmm…
      GOP Senate majority? Check…
      GOP House majority? Check…
      Conservative SCOTUS majority…Check…
      Holy Sh*t….

    • jmiker

      Why would the GOP ban guns? They’re all half paid for by gun manufacturers and the NRA nuts.

      • Matthew Johnson

        Doesn’t matter, they have more of a track record of banning guns. Form Reagan to Romney, and Sarah Palin. Palin disarmed a Alaskian militia and Romney signed a assault weapons ban in 2005.

      • jmiker

        Welp. There’s some irony for you.

      • Charles Vincent

        WRT Reagan
        He didn’t ban any weapons he instituted the brady bill which gave is the background check that FFL dealers submit when someone purchases a firearm from them.

        WRT Palin
        You’re an idiot who either doesn’t know all the facts of the case or you willfully omitted them to serve a purpose in advancing your hate of the public figures on the right.
        “an investigation by authorities had concluded with a recommendation by Lt. Gen. Craig Campbell, the state’s military and veterans affairs commissioner that an all-volunteer militia led by Brig. General Thomas Westall, created to assist the Nation Guard, ought to be disarmed of state-owned and provided weapons over potential liability issues for the state. This investigation had stemmed from a complaint filed by a member, Larry Wood, because he felt the militia commander might be issuing arbitrary orders and dismissals to members, he himself having been dismissed for unclear cause by his own account. In short, this was a situation in which responsible Alaska State officials were heading off any potential liability situation for the state. This sort of action is undertaken by any responsible state official who is concerned with making policies and taking decisions consistent with their official mandates. It had been concluded by investigators that the militia had insufficient policies and procedures, such that its control and direction had come into question. The article in the ADN had been: Defense Commander Resigns After Complaints.”

    • FD Brian

      if black people ever have the courage to open carry and I mean a large amount of them, then you will see gun legislation in every state. But that would take courage never before seen in any human being to do.

      • Eg Kbbs

        FD Brian, you’ve probably heard about this (I’m guessing you’re too young to remember it). Back when Reagan was gov of California, the Black Muslims joined with some other groups to arm blacks so they could protect themselves. Reagan worked with the feds to squash it.

      • FD Brian

        I read about that. Probably where I got the idea.

  • Jim Bean

    Profiling?

    “Twelve per cent of London’s men are black. But 54 per cent of the street crimes committed by men in London, along with 46 per cent of the knife crimes and more than half of the gun crimes, are thought by the Metropolitan Police to have been committed by black men. In 54 per cent of street crimes where police catch their suspect, that suspect is black.” (The Telegraph, UK)

    • sherry06053

      You are full of crap. I don’t know what your source is, but what I found was their prison population was 72% white and 13 % black – the rest was other. I didn’t read the whole report – just enough to know that you are posting false information. Why? Never mind. I don’t care.

      • Jim Bean

        I cited my source. If they got it wrong, shoot them an email and straighten them out. I note you didn’t reveal your source.

      • Eg Kbbs

        A British tabloid is what you’re calling a source ? Ever play the game “gossip” ?

      • Charles Vincent

        I think you need to learn how to do web searches.

        I found this one that sites multiple sources that back Jim beans assertion in about 5 minutes.

        http://www DoT theguardian DOT com/society/2010/oct/11/black-prison-population-increase-england

      • sherry06053

        I went to the City of London’s crime statistics. I don’t know the Guardian, but you can find any results you want if you don’t care about the source.

      • Charles Vincent

        That’s a funny implication considering you provided no link to your supposed source. Secondly the article I posted the link to talks about England and Wales not just London.
        Also in the article it states they got some of the information from “Ministry of Justice document, footnoted as the source of the EHRC statement that stated: “Black prisoners make up 15% of the prisoner population and this compares with 2.2% of the general population – there is greater disproportionality in the number of black people in prisons in the UK than there is in the United States.””

        Given that I provided a link, the onus is on you to disprove my assertion, instead you resorted to a logical Fallacy argument.

        Please provide the link to your data otherwise you’re the one that’s “full of crap” as you so stated to Jim’s original post.

      • sherry06053

        For some reason, my computer will not allow me to copy/paste the link, which is why I didn’t add it. I am busy, but have attempted to find the source again, later. If it will allow me to, I am going to paste the information I got from YOUR source, which proves him wrong…let’s see if it works…

        Race and crime[edit]

        Further information: Race and crime in the United Kingdom

        In June 2010 The Sunday Telegraph, through a Freedom of Information Act request, obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken down by race from the Metropolitan Police Service.[n 1] The figures showed that a lower proportion of males who were accused of violent and sexual crimes (including those subsequently acquitted) in 2009–10 were white. Of the recorded 18,091 such accusations against males, 46 percent accused of street crimes were white; for robbery, 41 percent; for gun crimes, 33 percent; and for sexual offences, 68 percent. The paper reported that 69 percent of London’s population is white.[47]

        Street crimes include muggings, assault with intent to rob, and snatching property.. White males accounted for 79 percent of the male victims of gun crime and 76 percent of the male victims of knife crime.[47] Similar statistics were recorded for females. On knife crime, 55 percent of suspected female perpetrators were white; for gun crime, 58 percent; and for robberies, 52 percent.[48]

        Operation Trident was set up in March 1998 by the Metropolitan Police to investigate gun crime in London’s black community after black-on-black shootings in Lambeth and Brent.[49]

        Between April 2005 and January 2006, figures from the Metropolitan Police Service showed that white people accounted for 54 percent of car-crime arrests generated by automatic number plate recognition cameras.[50]

      • Charles Vincent

        Race and crime in London

        See also: Crime in London

        Figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that in 2007 an estimated 10.6 percent of London’s population of 7,556,900 were black.[23] Evidence shows that the black population in London boroughs increases with the level of deprivation, and that the level of crime also increases with deprivation, such that “It is clear that ethnicity, deprivation, victimisation and offending are closely and intricately inter-related”.[24]

        In June 2010 The Sunday Telegraph, through a Freedom of Information Act request, obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken down by race from the Metropolitan Police Service.[n 2]
        The figures showed that the majority of males who were accused of violent crimes in 2009–10 were black. Of the recorded 18,091 such accusations against males, 54 percent accused of street crimes were black; for robbery, 59 percent; and for gun crimes, 67 percent.[25] Robbery, drug use, and gang violence have been associated with black people since the 1960s.[26] In the 1980s and 1990s, the police associated robbery with black people. In 1995, the Metropolitan Police commissioner Paul Condon said that the majority of robberies in London were committed by black people.[27]

        Street crimes include muggings, assault with intent to rob, and snatching property. Black males accounted for 29 percent of the male victims of gun crime and 24 percent of the male victims of knife crime.[25]Similar statistics were recorded for females. On knife crime, 45 percent of suspected female perpetrators were black; for gun crime, 58
        percent; and for robberies, 52 percent.[28]

        Operation Trident was set up in March 1998 by the Metropolitan Police to investigate gun crime in London’s black community after black-on-black shootings in Lambeth and Brent.[29]

        Between April 2005 and January 2006, figures from the Metropolitan Police Service showed that black people accounted for 46 percent of car-crime arrests generated by automatic number plate recognition cameras.[30]

        In London in 2006, 75% of the victims of gun crime and 79% of the suspects were “from the African/Caribbean community.”[31]

      • Charles Vincent

        In June 2010 The Sunday Telegraph, through a Freedom of Information Act request, obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken down by race from the Metropolitan Police Service.[n 2] The figures showed that the majority of males who were accused of violent crimes in 2009–10 were black. Of the recorded 18,091 such accusations against males, 54 percent accused of street crimes were black; for robbery, 59 percent; and for gun crimes, 67 percent.[25] Robbery, drug use, and gang violence have been associated with black people since the 1960s.[26] In the 1980s and 1990s, the police associated robbery with black people. In 1995, the Metropolitan Police commissioner Paul Condon said that the majority of robberies in London were committed by black people.[27]

        In June 2010 The Sunday Telegraph, through a Freedom of
        Information Act request, obtained statistics on accusations of crime broken
        down by race from the Metropolitan Police Service.[n 1] The figures showed that
        a lower proportion of males who were accused of violent and sexual crimes
        (including those subsequently acquitted) in 2009–10 were white. Of the recorded
        18,091 such accusations against males, 46 percent accused of street crimes were
        white; for robbery, 41 percent; for gun crimes, 33 percent; and for sexual
        offences, 68 percent. The paper reported that 69 percent of London’s population
        is white.[47]

      • sherry06053

        I am not reading all this stuff – you asked me for my source, so I found it and posted it. I did not edit anything. Look it up yourself. I downloaded the whole freakin’ report so that I could post the link. I am done with this whole conversation – my husband became very sick on Sat. and I don’t give a crap about what’s going on in London.

      • Charles Vincent

        From your previous post;
        “but have attempted to find the source again, later. If it will allow me to, I am going to paste the information I got from YOUR source, which proves him wrong…let’s see if it works…”

        The last part is what’s important you pasted the information from my source not yours.

        As to your claim your husband is sick, this seems to be an appeal to pity, but on the off chance it isn’t you trying to weasel out, I wish him a speedy recovery.

      • sherry06053

        Today, we are sitting and waiting for blood test results. Tomorrow he has an ultrasound. It sounds like he may have to have his gall bladder out and I am scared. I don’t need your pity and couldn’t care less about this topic any longer…

      • Charles Vincent

        Appeal to pity (argumentum ad misericordiam) – an argument attempts to induce pity to sway opponents.

        I also reiterate my previous statement “but on the off chance it isn’t you trying to weasel out, I wish him a speedy recovery.”

      • Charles Vincent

        http://en DOT wikipedia DOT org/wiki/Race_and_crime_in_the_United_Kingdom

        Under the heading of Race, crime in London still supports jims argument and unless you’re willing to say that the Office for National Statistics and the Metropolitan Police are unreliable source data your argument is shot.

  • Eg Kbbs

    Can you imagine what would have happened if on Monday night, any of the Ferguson protestors had been exercising their 2nd Amendment rights ?

    And I’m talking even a narrow interpretation of the 2nd. How much worse would it have been if they had been open carrying (allowable in Missouri) ? Or especially if they went off the far right and proclaimed the untenable theory that the 2nd was specifically meant so the people can defend themselves against the government (and could easily point to any police over-action as showing the need to protect themselves) ?

    • Charles Vincent

      I hardly think it untenable, however it does prove how grossly ignorant you are of the making of this nation.

      Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of.
      Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. And it is not certain that with this aid alone they would not be able to shake off their yokes.
      But were the people to possess the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will and direct the national force, and of officers appointed out of the militia by these governments and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned in spite of the legions which surround it.
      Let us not insult the free and gallant citizens of America with the suspicion that they would be less able to defend the rights of which they would be in actual possession than the debased subjects of arbitrary power would be to rescue theirs from the hands of their oppressors.
      James Madison, Federalist # 46

      It has been several times truly remarked that bills of rights are, in their origin, stipulations between kings and their subjects, abridgments of prerogative in favour of privilege, reservations of rights not surrendered to the prince. It is evident, therefore, that, according to their primitive signification, they have no application to constitutions, professedly founded upon the power of the people and executed by their immediate representatives and servants.

      Here, in strictness, the people surrender nothing; and as they retain everything they have no need of particular reservations, “WE, THE PEOPLE of the United States, to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
      Here is a better recognition of popular rights than volumes of those aphorisms which make the principal figure in several of our State bills of rights and which would sound much better in a treatise of ethics than in a constitution of government.

      But a minute detail of particular rights is certainly far less applicable to a Constitution like that under consideration, which is merely intended to regulate the general political interests of the nation, than to a constitution which has the regulation of every species of personal and private concerns. If, therefore, the loud clamors against the plan of the convention, on this score, are well founded, no epithets of reprobation will be too strong for the constitution of this State. But the truth is that both of them contain all which, in relation to their objects, is reasonably to be desired. I go further and affirm that bills of rights, in the sense and to the extent in which they are contended for, are not only unnecessary in the proposed Constitution but would even be dangerous. They would contain various exceptions to powers which are not granted; and, on this very account, would afford a colorable pretext to claim more than were granted. For why declare that things shall not be done which there is no power to do?

      Why, for instance, should it be said that the liberty of the press shall not be restrained, when no power is given by which restrictions may be imposed? I will not contend that such a provision would confer a regulating power; but it is evident that it would furnish, to men disposed to usurp, a plausible pretense for claiming that power. They might urge with a semblance of reason that the Constitution ought not to be charged with the absurdity of providing against the abuse of an authority which was not given, and that the provision against restraining the liberty of the press afforded a clear implication that a power to prescribe proper regulations concerning it was intended to be vested in the national government.
      Alexander Hamilton, Federalist # 84