Letter to the editor: Chapman champion says, ‘Back!’ to critics


To the editor:

I write you in response to your “news article,” if it can be called that, titled “Jake Chapman stokes vigilante zeal in some Iowa gun owners.”

I’ve written before, asking why you feel you can use ThePerryNews.com to slant reporting toward your opinion. This article is another prime example, and you don’t even have to read past the subtitle to see it. The title of the article says Sen. Jake Chapman “stokes vigilante zeal,” and the subtitle says the Adel Senator “calls for the deployment of Iowa National Guard.”

I fail to see how the National Guard are vigilantes. But let’s go deeper into the article to find more examples. I don’t want to get hung up on the first 23 words, but you do seem to have a love of the word “zeal” when it comes to describing legal gun owners (see my previous letter to the editor of April 16, 2020).

In an effort to keep this letter concise and focused as a letter to the editor should be and not a rambling political statement, I will pull what I see to be three major slants you published.

You quoted Sen. Chapman multiple times. I refer you to the original article, as I don’t want to fill this letter with already-published quotes, but I do not find one quote that calls for “vigilante zeal.”

Now I know you will say that the comments of others made on Chapman’s post sounded “vigilante” in nature, and thus you are correct in your title, but other than Sen. Chapman’s showing his support for the Second Amendment in the photo, there was not one mention of using guns.

Only you mention guns with the following quotes: “Sticking to his guns,” “said one advocate of gun violence” and “said another pro-Chapman gun-rights advocate.” I see this as you again trying to make an article about your gun agenda when it wasn’t actually about guns but about the defense of “the rule of law.”

In this article, you again go to an unrelated issue and bring in a quote that has nothing to do with what is being “reported” and use it for shock value. You pull a quote from August of last year about a shooting in Texas — notice the reference to guns again — and you say that Sen. Chapman was “so far out of the mainstream that he won’t even join the national conversation about how to improve public safety in the United States.”

There is no explanation or back story on this. You are just trying to make Sen. Chapman sound like he doesn’t care about shooting people. Again, he never called for that. Only you have made that reference.

Your last paragraph leaves me with the taste of bile in my mouth. I cannot believe you actually use Sen. Chapman’s support of the “rule of law,” the Second Amendment, protection of private property, “sacredness of life” and a conversion from use of the National Guard to “deploy the U.S. military against all enemies foreign and domestic” as a call from ThePerryNews.com to make Sen. Chapman “a worthy successor to the soon-to-be-silenced nine-term Iowa Congressperson Steve King.”

If this is not a personal slant, I evidently do not know what one is. I would say, to quote your response to my Facebook post, that it is “contrary to the highest ethics and standards of American journalism, to which ThePerryNews.com is ever true.”

I know I said three things to keep my letter brief, but I also want to tell everyone who has not had the opportunity to serve in the National Guard that when I enlisted in the National Guard, I was trained to respond to riots. Not once that I can remember in our training were we ever told to shoot rioters.

In fact, I remember we were not given guns, just shields. We were trained to create a barrier and yell “Back!” taking small steps forward, pressing the rioters away from what was designated as our mission to protect.

So I stand today, saying “Back!” to anyone who feels that protesters who “blocked the parking lot and store entrance and spray painted the police car” are acceptable.

I say “Back!” to the fact that protesters who damage private and public property are not arrested, but hard working people are fired for trying to get groceries.

And I say “Back!” to editors that use their First Amendment-protected right to slant their “reporting” to cancel our Second Amendment right and push to not re-elect a state senator because that is what I see you (again) doing in this article.

Gary Mullen


  1. Perry News really kind of lost me when they were expressing concern that our neighbors might be asked (well, ordered) to protect our statues and other stuff. When has the National Guard become anything more than our neighbors? Why would that be controversial? Has now liking Tweets become something that whole editorials can be devoted to? Perhaps my Comp 2 professor said it best, “Stop handing in rough drafts. Do some editing and I’ll give you an A instead of a B.” But then to remove the stuff about liking Tweets and the worries about having our neighbors in the National Guard helping the police to maintain order, and there really is not much left to the editorial other than the try to tie Chapman to King. Perhaps a good, long interview needs to be done? Explore these issues completely with Chapman in a face-to-face interview instead of trying to discern who he is and what he means through Tweets and likes of Tweets of all things.

  2. If all of the Hy-Vee protesters arrived heavily armed (their Personal Protection Equipment), thereby exercising their Second Amendment rights, would they then be embraced as patriots? That appeared to work well in some recent protests.

    • The recent protests that you refer to were in response to the threat of government interference with the Second Amendment. The protesters exercised their First Amendment rights to peacefully assemble to preserve and protect the Second Amendment, which is absolutely patriotic. Protesters that infringe on others’ rights and to burden citizens with costs of damage to property and businesses are unconstitutional, unpatriotic and criminal. What is the justification for the protest at Hy-Vee?


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