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Michael S. Brown

Friday, November 1st, 2002

Michael S. Brown, an optometric
physician from Vancouver, Washington,
is the designated recipient of
the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender
of the Month Award for November.
In nominating Dr. Brown for the
Award, John Michael Snyder, CCRKBA
Public Affairs Director, pointed
out that, “in the overall history of
peoples, the periods and places
during which political freedom has
been accepted generally as normative
have been few and far between. We
Americans, of course, are fortunate
to be living in such a period and
place. To maintain that freedom,
though, and especially its linchpin,
the individual right to keep and bear
arms, demands commitment from a
number of people in various walks
of life.
“One of the Americans who has
come to realize this in recent years is
Dr. Brown, who has taken time away
from his medical practice to work
and write in support of the right to
keep and bear arms. It is going to
take a number of people like Mike
Brown working in support of our
rights to maintain our freedom. As
an exemplar of that spirit which we
need to maintain our right to keep
and bear arms, he is most deserving
of this Award.”
Brown, a member of Doctors for
Sensible Gun Laws, describes himself
as “a mild-mannered Optometrist
who has never been politically active
until recently. I am sorry to admit that
I have always enjoyed the fruits of
life in a free country, but until now I
have done little to preserve our civil
rights.
“One of the rights I take very seriously
is the Second Amendment right
to keep and bear arms. I feel that
this one right, more than any other,
represents the American belief in
personal responsibility and the value
of the individual over the state.”
Brown goes on to state that,
“beginning a few years ago, the
strident voices for gun control finally
exceeded my tolerance. The
hypocrisy, lies, racism, sexism and
other tactics used by the gun haters
and self-serving politicians became
too much for me to bear in silence.
This was compounded by the way
in which the media supported the
gun prohibition agenda without
questioning the many false and
misleading statements.
“My response has been to become
politically active for the first time. I
am contributing modest amounts
of money to political campaigns
and gun rights organizations. I am
writing letters to my elected officials
and op-ed articles for various media
outlets.”
In one of these op-ed articles,
Dr. Brown outlines the effects of
outrageously strict gun controls in
England. There, he notes, “criminals
are now certain that citizens have no
effective means to resist an armed
attack. The gun–armed criminal is
thus a king free to rape and plunder
at will. At least Britain deserves credit
for thoroughness. In contrast with
American practice, where the rich
and famous are effectively exempt
from gun laws, English gun controls
are so tight that even celebrities are
unarmed, leading to many reports
of celebrity mansion burglaries and
street assaults.”
Dr. Brown compares the English
approach to gun control with the
futuristic novel by Ray Bradbury,
“Fahrenheit 451.” In the totalitarian
future outlined by Bradbury, firemen
have as part of their responsibility
the duty to find and burn books. As
Dr. Brown points out. England now
is taking the same approach to guns
as the totalitarians take to books in
“Fahrenheit 451.”
Those who read Bradbury’s book
or saw the movie based on it starring
Oskar Werner, or both, “know the
way that subtle alterations of terminology
and a slow erosion of common
sense can pervert an entire society to
the point that it destroys itself in the
quest for perfection,” states Brown.
“In this case, the perfection they seek
is a society without violence, but like
all utopian experiments this one, too,
is doomed to failure.”
Mike Brown received his doctoral
degree in 1978 from Pacific University
in Oregon. He purchased his first
firearm, a Government Model Colt,
when he was 23 years old. He tells
Point Blank that he is concentrating
on enjoying the shooting sports,
“especially by taking classes at the
Firearms Academy of Seattle.”
Dr. Brown operates a general
optometry multi-disciplinary clinic
in Vancouver. His sub-specialty is
low-vision. This involves “helping
partially-sighted persons to read with
various types of magnification aids,”
he tells Point Blank.
“Americans have good reason to
point at our English cousins and
laugh as they laughed at us during
the ear of alcohol prohibition,” states
Brown, “but I suggest we thank them
for conducting one of the great social
experiments of our time. By showing
the counterproductive nature of
gun control, they are teaching us a
powerful lesson. We can only hope
they see the light before their society
is too badly damaged.