John Bartolo at the mic of the John Bartolo Show

John Bartolo: The Most Dangerous Man in the Firearms Industry

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John Bartolo, “The most dangerous person in the firearms industry…” That is a pretty bold statement for the firearms community and requires some qualification. No, Bartolo is not dangerous from a Tier 1 operator perspective. The pen may be mightier than the sword Instead of running and gunning, he runs his mouth—and too most, that is every bit as dangerous.

John Bartolo, Max Michele, Doug Koenig, JJ Racaza standing in front of the John Bartolo Show gun wall
L to R: John Bartolo, Max Michele, Doug Koenig, and JJ Racaza. Competitors at the range, but always willing to team up for a roundtable about shooting sports.

In writing, we say the pen is mightier than sword. However, technology is changing the rules and podcasting has a broad reach that targets the masses and crosses all generations. In a world where email campaigns are less likely to reach senior and millennials who don’t want to spend time reading more than a shorthand text message, long-form podcasting has the depth to entertain while tackling tough topics in depth.

The Threat to the Second Amendment

The future of the firearms industry and Second Amendment hinges on two forces — the anti-Second Amendment forces and future recruitment. Politics are fickle. A legislator can be your best advocate one day and lick their finger to see which way the political wind blows the next. High-profile crimes involving firearms present a danger when otherwise pro Second Amendment politicians succumb to feel-good politics. Rash, unresearched bills are passed when common sense is thrown out the window—endangering our rights under the Second Amendment.

Dr. Heather Linden on the set of the John Bartolo Show
Love the UFC? From Olympic athletes to the UFC fighters, Dr. Linden has the physical therapy you need.

The Second threat stems from a lack of enthusiasm or access by the next generation. Millennials are extremely likely to be an enthusiast of a first-person shooter video game, but many have never fired a gun at the range or honed their self-defense skills for the day the wolf shows up at their door.

If new shooters are not introduced into the shooting sports, the Second Amendment is will falter through pure attrition of enthusiasts. After all, have you ever introduced someone to firearms who did not have fun? I am not talking to the idiots who give a neophyte a gun with enough recoil to jar the fillings in their teeth loose, but a proper introduction to the shooting sports.

The John Bartolo Show: Growing the Base

Podcasting is not new, but it is the fastest growing medium for entertainment and news. A quick Google search will yield dozens of shooting sports related podcasts, so what makes The John Bartolo Show so different from the rest? What makes it so dangerous? The answer is simple, the caliber of guests and topics covered. More than just a gun show, Bartolo’s vision went much deeper to include UFC fighters, Body Builders, Navy SEALs, pro football players, motivations speakers and injured veterans such as Crispy11B, CEOs, competitors, national champions, motocross riders, reformed drug addicts, and more.

Dany Dixxon
You may not have heard of Danny Dixxon, but Dixxon Flannels have taken fashion “back to the future.” You may have to find them in your local Harley Davidson store, but your body will thank you…

Here is a small cross section of guests.

Donald Trump Jr. Matt Gates Rudy Giuliani
Maj Toure JJ Racaza Max Michel
Gunfufighter Buff Cookie Scummy
Rob Bailey Ed’s Manifesto Valentina Shevchenko
Tony Sentmanat Eric Anders Charlie Kirk

Each of the 350+ episodes of the show have a firearm, self-defense, fitness angle which is differs from the average gun podcast, but what really makes Bartolo dangerous to the anti-gunners is cross pollination of markets offered by his guest list. One show may feature Jay Cutler, (Four time Mr. Olympia) with over 4 million followers and the next episode will drop the scoop on the gun industry while delving into whether the current ammunition shortage is a manufactured crisis with SIG Sauer’s CEO Tom Taylor. The most recent guest to drop by the John Bartolo Show was none other than the Dana White, president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC)—a firearms enthusiast and lifelong promoter of self-defense sports.

Dana White of the UFC holding a Smith and Wesson Competitor
Dana White could hardly control his enthusiasm when reaching for the Smith and Wesson Competitor.

Whether the guest has a few thousand followers or millions of rabid fans, the net effect is a positive representation of the firearms industry and crossover conversion of new enthusiasts, particularly young enthusiasts who are our best hope for the future of the Second Amendment.

The John Bartolo Show: The Second Amendment’s Best Hope?

Less than two years old, The John Bartolo Show already enjoys more than 500,000+ downloads, over 1 million views on YouTube, and available everywhere podcast are heard (iTunes, Spotify,  Pandora, iHeartRadio, etc.).

John Bartolo and Zoila Frausto standing fist to fist
Zoila the Warrior Princess was the first Bellator Women’s Champion and a force to be reckoned with!

For too long, the firearms industry has been dominated by visuals of cheesy mag dumps in the desert and Tier 1 operators. Don’t get me wrong, I have a helluva lot of respect for what these special forces guys have done, and continue to do, for our country. But let’s be realistic, these guys are superstars because of their God-given talent and a lot of hard training. An AR-15 is cosmetically similar to the M4 used in combat and that is about where the similarity ends. Yet, that is the image the antis portray of the Modern Sporting Rifle.

Education and Recruitment

Do you believe that we are bringing more people into shooting and the outdoor shooting sports than we are losing to attrition, age, and the anti-gun forces? Education is a problem that organizations such as the National Rifle Association (NRA), National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), thousands of firearms trainers, and other organizations and great Americans have done a fairly good job of addressing, but this has not put firearms in a favorable light—as least not to the degree we need. The NRA and others deserve some credit for recruitment through training, safety courses, and introducing and educating new shooters. However, the people they are reaching sought them out for the training. Who can you name that is putting the shooting sports and firearms in a favorable light to more than the Second Amendment’s congregation and choir? Who else is reaching outside of the firearms community to show the positive side of firearms and self-defense?

John Bartolo: The Most Dangerous Man in the Firearms Industry?

John Bartolo and President Trump at the Whitehouse
Most Dangerous Man? Yes, John Bartolo’s reach is nearly limitless.

Whether John Bartolo is the most dangerous man in the firearms industry may be a matter of opinion. However, the number of viewers the John Bartolo Show is generating, and the positive light being cast on firearms to people outside of the shooting sports community is not. Industry executives both love and fear Bartolo. The John Bartolo Show is a backstage pass to some of the most influential people inside and outside of the industry, forcing them to go on the record and confront issues otherwise only discussed in the shadows! Your political beliefs are irrelevant, because love him or hate him, the John Bartolo Show is can’t miss media.

Be sure to check out the John Bartolo Show on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or at

Cocked and Locked is the official content provider of Be sure to also check out: Washington Appeals Court Unanimously Upholds Preemption.

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