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CSC: Moore's bodyguard arrested in NYC--Is the story incorrect?

Randall N. Herrst, President
The Center For The Study Of Crime

The story is a bit complex, but not undecipherable. Some people have already conceded that Moore was not involved in any way or that the incident never happened--both points are untrue, based upon best available evidence. The most probable facts are that Moore's bodyguard was in fact in violation of the law. The bodyguard may have even been in NYC that week to cover Moore (not certain at this time), and was then preparing to fly home.

There are three major issues (and dozens of sub-issues) regarding this story: 1. Did a current or former bodyguard who guarded Moore violate NY firearms laws and get arrested? 2. If Moore has currently or previously hired bodyguards who carry firearms, does that indicate that he is an immoral elitist? 3. Is the NY legal situation regarding firearms and legal transportation immoral, un-Constitutional, and arranged or allowed to operate to act as a trap? The short answer to all 3 questions is "Yes". The issue regarding Burke's employment status is relatively trivial, but to state the facts simply, he was a firearm-armed employee of a company that was hired by Moore for bodyguard protection--so he did not technically "work for" Moore, but was an agent or employee of a company that did work for Moore. Note how the employer tries to evade or obscure this basic fact in the letters he sent to media outlets.

I'd suggest that anyone who is interested, go to this web site and read all the links and all the "corrections", "updates", all the comments, and the "summary" before making a snap decision: http://www.moorewatch.com/

Is the news story, "Michael Moore's bodyguard arrested on Airport Gun Charge" incorrect, as some are now claiming?

Not incorrect, so much as subject to various "parsings". And you know what it means when you have to resort to parsing--there is usually a cover up going on. The issue of whether Burke was "Moore's bodyguard" or whether he had ever been employed by others to protect Moore is relatively unimportant, and a technical legal matter rather than an issue of substance (technically, he was an employee or agent of Gavin De Becker's bodyguard company, who has assigned employees to guard Moore, apparently many times.). Note that the claim that Burke was "Moore's bodyguard" apparently came from Burke himself, probably to use the power of celebrity to avoid arrest. Otherwise, how would the reporter have known? Do reporters have any way to follow every arrest made at airports? How would they even know that they might want to check the bodyguard's employment history, and how could they do so even if that is what they wanted?

The original moral point of the story was that Moore is, was, and always will be an elitist hypocrite who doesn't like average Americans who believe they have a right to defend themselves. That is an independently verifiable fact--and it is correct, no matter what the details of the story. The moral issue is absolutely about Moore. There is no moral basis for arrogating for yourself, the rights that you would deny to other decent citizens. Or do you agree with Moore on this? If Moore were right (that would be novel!), he would not hire bodyguards of any type, so that he could live like the little people he claims to love. And if he gave up that moral high ground, then he would at least be morally required to hire only unarmed bodyguards to conform with his statist condemnation of firearms in the hands of citizens. There is no evidence that he has ever exercised that moral imperative. He apparently engaged the services of Burke/De Becker often enough that Burke felt comfortable using Moore as a reference in an arrest. It wasn't any of us who made the claim that Burke was Moore's bodyguard. Some people are directing their unjustified anger at the wrong people. File your complaint with Moore and De Becker and AP. And always remember that Moore could take the moral high ground and refuse to have bodyguards--or at least refuse bodyguards armed with firearms. There would be no story here if Moore had not previously bought armed bodyguard services, while demanding that the serfs be disarmed.

If you read the demand for retraction from Gavin De Becker (employer of "Moore's bodyguard"), you may notice some very clever evasions and phraseology (it makes me wonder if that cleverly worded manipulation of perceptions was requested by and possibly even written by Moore). For example, he claims, "Patrick Burk’s firearm is legally registered to Patrick Burk - it is not 'unlicensed.' "--but in fact the gun was NOT IN ANY WAY licensed in New York, where the arrest took place--so it is UNLICENSED AS A MATTER OF LAW. There is no indication that Burke was personally licensed by New York, either. Anyone on this list knows that under existing morally-and-Constitutionally-defective laws you can't just claim to have a CCW in one state and automatically carry elsewhere. Logically, you should be able to carry under the "full faith and credit" clause, but that has not yet been implemented. If a bad law applies to us "mere citizens", it should also apply to, and embarrass, the most arrogant of the elite.

De Becker also makes the deceptive claim that, "Patrick Burk is not Michael Moore’s bodyguard, and has never been employed by Michael Moore." But De Becker never actually denies that Burke was at one time (or multiple times) assigned by De Becker to cover Moore. The rest of De Becker's message studiously avoids any specific mention of whether or not Burke was ever assigned by De Becker's firm to work with, or protect, Michael Moore. Since that was one of the main points in the news story, wouldn't you think it would be necessary to address the issue explicitly? Not if you are trying to deceive people or misdirect people. Maybe De Becker isn't exactly lying, but he is certainly muddying the waters.

I'll have to look it up, but I recall reading that Gavin De Becker, owner of the bodyguard firm that employs Burke, does not believe that people should own or use firearms for self-defense. Possibly an elitist being paid huge sums of money to protect a rich elitist. I'd be very, very, very, very, very skeptical about taking his word on anything, especially after his actions in this controversy.

When analyzing this incident, it is wise to treat the 3 major issues as entirely separate issues, rather than letting one issue mislead you on the others.

There are many more interesting issues regarding this incident, and I would be happy to provide more information if you want it.

Randall N. Herrst, President
The Center For The Study Of Crime
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