censorship Reno May Demonetized for Aiding Neighbors Forrest Cooper May 21, 2021 9 Comments, Join the Conversation It was once said that the internet saved gun culture in America, as it brought many people together even though they lived all across the world. One example of that is Reno May, who continues to drive forward on platforms like YouTube. Living in California, which as a state, continues to be the stuff of memes, Reno May's channel has often centered on helping people in his state learn about the legal path to gun ownership. In what looks like punishment for doing good, YouTube has recently demonetized him. Photo by Reno May. We reached out and were able to get a few questions answered regarding Censorship, the Second Amendment, and what's next for Reno and his channel. How did you and your channel get started? Reno May: I got started in 2017 when I was working at a gun store in California. It was in a time period where a lot of laws (regarding firearms) were about to take effect. So rather than having to field 50 phone calls that would each take 15 minutes, we decided to make a video and direct people there. I ran the social media for the store until it closed in 2018 and stopped making videos until 2019. So many of those videos were still being commented on because some laws were changing again, making it more confusing. Shocking in California, I know. Photo by Route 66 Shooting Sports Park. I decided to make an updated video, but figured I’d only make a new one every other week. Things quickly cascaded, as I was hoping to move from 2,000 subscribers to 10,000 subscribers by the end of 2020. Instead we hit it in March (2020). The same day that California started talking about locking down, we launched a video on “How to buy a gun in California in 2020” and it exploded overnight. This has become a big part of my life now, even though it’s not a full-time job. I’m fortunate to be able to do this. What's it like working with YouTube? With YouTube, it’s a never-ending game of cat and mouse. Even if you follow the rules, they can decide they don’t like what you’re doing and demonetize you. While it’s technically not censorship, it removes the potential from the platform. It was a pretty big hit yesterday, when I woke up to an email saying that I was removed from the YouTube partner program. There weren’t any specifics, but they said they looked at my channel and believed it wasn’t in line with their policies. All they said was that it was related to firearms. All I do (on my channel) is try to describe the legal text and to inform people so that they may make the best decisions they can. I’m looking to get re-monetized to continue with the channel. Photo by Route 66 Shooting Sports Park. Unfortunately, when you get removed from the program, there’s no way to get ahold of anybody. The amount of people who have reached out and said “Hey, I was nervous about buying a gun in California, but your video helped me out.” That’s what makes me happy to wake up in the morning. The amount of Californian gun owners who have come out in 2020 is huge. The California Department of Justice seems to want to tell people that guns are illegal, or that it’s too hard. It’s refreshing to help people figure out that it’s not the case. Although it’s not quite censorship, with the demonetization, what other challenges have you faced? Reno May: It’s hard, because sometimes you find out something that’s going on in the industry that’s unsavory, but at the end of the day you have to talk about it. In California, there’s a lot of bad things going on in regards to gun laws, and it's constant. It can be hard to stay optimistic, and it’s hard to keep people focused, active, and about it. They tend to go on a spectrum: interested in guns, to interested in rights, then they get a little upset about gun rights being stripped away, and eventually they feel defeated, and are no longer interested in participating in the game. Especially in California, they feel defeated and lose interest in trying to change things. Photo by Route 66 Shooting Sports Park. In California, everything that I want to do is more expensive and more difficult. Some people don’t like when I talk about certaing work-arounds, thinking that it’ll be the reason something is made illegal. If we all hide in the shadows and don’t own up that we’re gun owners it’ll just be 20 more years of losing the culture war. We can’t be silent anymore. There are many people who feel defeated and it’s hard to get them out of that state of mind. We cannot just sit back and try to keep what we got. What do you mean by the Culture War? Reno May: When you think about what has been allowed for people to believe about guns and gun ownership, they say things like “what do you need that for, you’re not going to hunt with that thing?” The problem is, for many years, people would say that they own guns to hunt. They said it because that was what they were comfortable with. I think we need to get more people to be comfortable owning the fact that they own firearms fully equipped to keep them from being oppressed by a government or group of people. We forget that during World War II, we put a whole bunch of people in cages because they had some sort of connection with Japan. People need to own the fact that some of their guns are not for hunting, it’s for being self-sufficient and having something to defend themselves with. We need to be more open and honest about when we own guns for self-defense. We’ve all seen people who treat gun ownership like it needs to be kept secret. Reno May Where to find him: YouTube: Reno May Instagram: @reno.mayguns MORE ON GUN CONTROL AND CENSORSHIP Year after year, Americans prove that the Second Amendment isn't going away. Here's the testimony. Young Americans are Turning Away from Gun Control. American Contingency has faced some of the greatest Censorship to date. No One Is Coming To Save You: RuneNation on Personal Ownership in the Age of Censorship. Warrior Poet Society, John Lovell, addresses Censorship, The Second Amendment, and Moving Forward. Year after year, Americans prove that the Second Amendment isn't going away. Here's the testimony. In Early 2021, Instagram Decided that the Second Amendment was Fake News. Read the Story. Time to Act: the ATF moves against Pistol Stabilizing Braces. SB Tactical versus the ATF: What Winning Looks Like. Punishment for Good Behavior. Why it matters when the ATF betrays the people. What the Leaked ATF Documents say about 80% parts. 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