Bullies And Goons At Cabela’s

Posted April 19th, 2016 by Iron Mike

They sell oodles of guns and bullets, – but their store goon pays scant lip service to our 1st Amendment!
Cabela's Sidewalk Manager
Three weeks ago I’d spent four hours on a windy Sunday afternoon collecting signatures outside Cabela’s in Berlin, Mass.  I went back Monday afternoon,  and again coordinated with the duty manager.  But no sooner had I begun,  than a 300 pound self-important goon appeared – wanting me to move off their sidewalk….


It is difficult for me to fully describe Paul’s [refused to give his last name] inability to understand simple written and spoken English.  Of course I handed him a highlighted copy of SecState Bill Galvin’s guidance on signature gathering in public places,…to include the phrase:

the common areas of privately owned shopping centers.

Paul couldn’t / wouldn’t comprehend,…frankly he didn’t want to.  

He refused to understand that a sidewalk is a COMMON AREA.

Cabela's lip service to 2A

His claim was that my mere presence on Cabela sidewalk ‘constituted a safety hazard and a threat to customers’.

That of course is a standard Democrap ploy.

Minutes later a Berlin PD patrol car arrived,…and minutes later I got to meet Officers Kevin Trongone and Rookie Michael O’Malley.

Officer Kevin Trongone

Trongone took the lead,  and he was clearly siding with his local taxpaying business,  – damn that 1st Amendment or the 1983 Batchelder Decision.

I was up against a stone column – surrounded on three sides,  and Trongone – after reading Galvin’s guidance – indifferently handed it back to me as if it didn’t matter.

Berlin Officer Michael O'Malley

For the record,  young O’Malley – on the force just under 2 months – was clearly torn between his superior understanding of the constitutional issue – and trying to back up his training officer.  There may be hope for him.

Trongone remained bullying and intransigent,  and when I continued to collect signatures from willing Republicans – let me know he felt I was ‘disrespecting him’.

He also exceeded his authority by asking for my driver’s license….which he had no probable cause to ask for….

FOLKS, this is EXACTLY why our Framers gave us the 2nd Amendment,  – because they knew from bitter experience how even a little authority – or a uniform – can quickly overwhelm common sense, decency, and judgment in some men.

I have no doubt that Trongone is normally a decent and respectful police officer;  – a man who [given time to think about it] would not ignore his sworn oath to uphold, protect, and defend our Constitution….

But in the political environment of small-town policing, – he was willing to ignore our Constitution – and ignore the facts, – to support his local taxpayer.

What he should have done was tell Paul the Sidewalk Nazi:   “The law is clear,  – this man has the right to collect signatures here so long as he doesn’t block your door,  – which he’s not doing! Stop harassing him.”

What else will such cops do… – if ordered to undertake illegal activities, – such as harassing politicians or confiscating firearms,…or arresting and shooting landowners who oppose Obama…?

Trangone’s ‘solution’ was for me to move across the street – away from the stream of customers, [thus placing citizens in greater danger of being hit by cars].

And he was hinting that he was willing to take it further – as his hand kept going to his cuffs.

Rather than risk having several hundred signatures impounded by the Berlin PD [what irony, Hitler would have been proud of these guys], – I did move, – but I’d lost 45 minutes of prime time in the process….

Cabela’s was the bigger loser.  Of course I’ll be taking this further,  and at least 70+ passing customers were witness to the police action which did manage to block the door – [again the irony of Sidewalk Nazi Paul’s original bogus assertion].

With such a massive commitment to selling guns in Massachusetts,  – you’d think Cabala’s would be more friendly to a pro-2A Republican…

Cabela's Asset Manager fat Paul

Berlin Police non-emergency Phone: 978  838-7355

Cabela’s Corporate Office  Sidney, Nebraska  308  254-5505

UPDATE #1:   Thurs 21 April 2016   I am pleased and relieved to report my meeting with Berlin Police Chief Thomas Galvin went very well.  Berlin should be proud of him.   The police half of this unfortunate incident has been RESOLVED!

UPDATE #2:   Sat 23 April 2016    I RETURNED to CABELA’S!   Somebody and gotten – and spread – the word!  This time there was no [ z-e-r-o ] grief from management as I spent 3+ hours in the same place collecting signatures.   No sign of Fat Paul, – and the dozen or so Cabela’s folks who walked by were all friendly – or indifferent.

Signatures at Cabela's

UPDATE #3:   2 PM Fri 17 June 2016   Took long enough but WoW!,   AG Maura Healey’s office finally responded to my complaint.  Had a call by a nice young college intern to run through my complaint.  Can only hope Healey and SecState Galvin can issue clearer updated instructions to merchants…..

UPDATE #4:   Monday 3 Oct 2016    Looks like the Sidewalk Nazi has a new boss…


FTC approves the buyout!


18 Responses to “Bullies And Goons At Cabela’s”

  1. Sherox

    Well, I wish I could say I was surprised.

  2. Kim


    I know that you know what to do! Unbelievable that the Berlin PD tossed aside the written law that defends our right so indifferently. Shame on them! And Cabelas? I was planning on sending my kids to their gun classes over the summer, maybe purchasing another kayak for our cabin. That won’t be happening. . .freaking tyrants!

  3. President Matt

    Why does it seem that those empowered to protect our rights are so willing to violate our rights?

  4. Iron Mike

    Empowered [guns, badges, uniforms, jail cells] and TRUSTED [they are selected – trained – and take an OATH].

    This was a total violation of that TRUST, and a total ABUSE of power.

  5. Hunter556

    Waiting on a reply from Cabela’s now…….


    in my life i have worked for 2 firearm distributors.the employees of these Gun companies should all have all been members of the nra at the very least a g.o.l member.less than 1/3 were.Your ‘FAT NAXI” 400lbs is a example of both arrogance and ignorance and his store should never let him interact with the public………

  7. Paul Baldi

    The idiot is not displaying any company ID: he could be
    anybody out to give you a hard time! If the “duty” manager
    said it was ok then where’s the problem? He looks like he
    just got out of diapers 6 months ago. Next time give him a
    free burger and fries and maybe he will leave you alone!

  8. FLICK

    I’m done with Cabelas and I will spread the word down here. Many friends patronize the store in Hamburg, PA; I will inform them of this incident.

    They’re not the only game in town.

  9. Walter Knight

    You are commended. It takes guts to fight alone. Liberals show up as a team, with a couple willing to be arrested, several witnesses, a video person, and legal aid.

  10. Hunter556

    And here is their reply when asked if Cabela’s supports The Constitution and the First:

    Thanks for contacting Cabela’s. Unfortunately we are not able to answer or get into discussions about philosophy although I can assure you the history of Cabela’s is in full support of the Constitution. If you have a more specific issue or situation at the store that concerns you, please respond with as much information as possible.

    If there is anything else we can help with don’t hesitate to contact us and it would be our pleasure to assist.

    Mitch C.
    We are here for you 24/7

    I’ll gladly be shopping else where in the future.

  11. Massachusetts Gun Rights

    Cabela’s is a rip off. Their guns and ammo are overpriced.

  12. panther6

    Very disappointing. Back in my Colorado elk hunting trips I dropped more at Cabelas than I like to remember. No more. Thank heaven it wasn’t Bass Pro Shop.

  13. Hunter556

    After I noted The Constitution is not a philosophy:

    Thanks for clarifying the issue, and I apologize if you feel annoyed by my response as I really didn’t understand what you were referring to and I am sorry. I suggest you talk to store management about this specifically as the retail management is directly responsible for the security guard actions. The phone number is: (978) 212-6200.

  14. Rich

    If word gets out about this to NE Shooters and other local 2A support groups Cabelas can kiss thier gun and hunting business good bye. They just lost mine.

  15. #blackgunsmatter

    Just boycott them and go elsewhere. You can find better deals at local gun shops and online. Use the power of purse, folks.

  16. LeoThe Lion4

    Well done, Iron Mike!

    The time for dusting off the good old fashioned boycott and deploying it against corporations like Cabela’s is long overdue.

  17. concerned constitutionalist

    The 1st Amendment only applies to government restrictions on free speech, religion, etc. Private businesses can do whatever they want. Your views on the Constitution are misguided and inaccurate. Furthermore, their sidewalk was not constructed by a city or other municipality, it is their property and they reserve the right to tell you to leave or move. Additionally, in the Batchelder decision, private business owners retain the rights to place reasonable limitations on the time, place, and manner of any ballot solicitation. For someone who touts their supposed knowledge of the Constitution, you’re pretty ignorant of how it works. You are delusional and wrong.


    So glad you’re chirping in on a TWO YEAR OLD POST. Where have you been?

    In attempting to appear learned in the LAW, you cited Batchelder v. Allied Stores International 1983. You FAILED to note that the Mass SJC overturned the Superior Court’s Batchelder denial – and later ordered it to award Batchelder attorney fees.

    In other words, Batchelder WON!

    Having collected signatures during the last 5 or 6 election cycles, I was well aware of both the Batchelder decisions, AND the earlier Pruneyard Shopping Center v. Robins 1980 decision upon which Batchelder largely was decided.

    I ALSO had the Mass SecState guidance which specifically instructs shopping center and strip mall owners/operators that signature gathers have an undisputed right to collect signatures – so long as they don’t obstruct doorways.

    Further, the more recent Glovsky vs Roche Bros. – 10 Oct 2014 decision made it clear that I was well within my rights as a Citizen of the Commonwealth to collect signatures, – and the Police Chief of Berlin agreed the following day.

    Please keep visiting RRB, and feel free to make INFORMED comments.

  18. concerned constitutionalist

    The Mass SJC upheld the constitutionality of his ballot collecting, while also stating that the private business owners retain the rights to place reasonable limitations on the time, place, and manner of any ballot solicitation. I didn’t say that you had no right to collect signatures, I merely said that private business owners have a right as well. Reading comprehension would serve you very well. You also didn’t address that private businesses have nothing to do with the 1st Amendment, which is typical for someone that doesn’t understand basic Constitutional Law.


    You are clearly unfamiliar with both Mass Law and signature collection.

    Suddenly you’re obsessing about something that happened 2 years ago? Why? What’s wrong in your life?