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Posts Tagged ‘firearms’

Ladies Night at the shooting range

Posted by Richard on February 8, 2012

Reporter Amanda Kost had a great story on Denver’s 7NEWS tonight about the explosion in gun ownership among women and the growing number of them who get together at the gun range to enjoy the shooting sports and develop self-defense skills. Very positive, informative, and well-presented. Check it out.

A friend who went to the last Tanner Gun Show commented on how many more women there were than in the past. I haven’t been to a gun show since last fall, but I noticed the same thing then. IMHO, this is a very, very good thing.

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Another gun control hypocrite hoist by his own petard

Posted by Richard on January 28, 2012

San Francisco’s new sheriff, Ross Mirkarimi, helped found the Green Party of California, worked for Ralph Nader in 2000, and was a strident advocate of gun control. Even MSNBC described him as “fiercely liberal –even in the context of progressive San Francisco.” Before being elected sheriff, he served for seven years on the Board of Supervisors, where he worked hard to strengthen San Francisco’s already-stringent gun control laws.

Recently, Mirkarimi was charged with misdemeanor domestic violence battery, child endangerment, and “dissuading a witness” (Is that like intimidating a witness, but more polite? Or just more politically connected?) for an incident involving his wife. Since the initial charges, two former girlfriends have come forward alleging that he abused them, too. And it’s been reported that Mirkarimi has a bad temper and tyrannizes his staff.

As a result of the arrest, and to the surprise of many, he was forced to surrender three handguns that he owns. According to CBS San Francisco, “Mirkarimi would not comment about any aspect of his gun ownership, where he kept the weapons or in what manner the firearms were stored.” That’s interesting because one of the gun control laws he helped strengthen last year mandates that all guns be securely locked up (and unavailable for self-defense).

David Cordrea, while not exactly sympathetic to Mirkarimi’s plight, pointed out the injustice of the laws Mirkarimi and his ilk have long supported, and which are now applied to him:

“If Mirkarimi were convicted on the domestic violence charge, he would not be able to carry a gun as sheriff,” reporter Joshua Sabatini claims.

True, but it would entail more than that. If convicted, “thanks” to the infamous Lautenberg Amendment, he would be a prohibited person under federal law, forbidden not only to carry a gun, but to own or even touch one—forever.

And a protective order is enough to disenfranchise him from his fundamental right to keep and bear arms prior to being convicted of anything.

But even if convicted, a prohibition of a fundamental natural right over a misdemeanor is overkill. …

CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb was less measured:

“Mirkarimi’s case presents a massive irony,” Gottlieb observed. “Here’s a man who has supported restrictive gun control measures while on the Board of Supervisors, and yet he had three handguns. He just was elected sheriff, and now he’s accused of a crime that, if he is convicted, could cost him his gun rights for the rest of his life under federal law.

“Perhaps Mirkarimi’s biggest problem is that he is now exposed as a double-standard elitist,” he continued. “News reports about this case over the past few days suggest that he may also have an anger-management problem.”

…“Someone who has been legally disarmed over a criminal charge,” he concluded, “should not be permitted to serve as a chief law enforcement officer. Someone like Mirkarimi, who has done whatever he could to discourage others from owning firearms, should admit his world-class hypocrisy and walk away from the public arena.”

Admit his hypocrisy? I’m not holding my breath. But I look forward to hearing him argue that he can continue to fulfill the duties of sheriff without so much as touching a gun.

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Mobile mayor’s hypocrisy

Posted by Richard on January 1, 2012

Mayor Sam Jones of Mobile, Alabama, is a member of Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns, an organization that advocates much stricter gun control laws and opposes letting private citizens carry guns. On Dec. 20th, Jones returned home to find a burglar in his garage. He held the man at gunpoint until police arrived.

The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) pointed out the hypocrisy — and possible illegality — of the mayor’s actions:

… According to published reports, Jones was returning home from an errand, driving his private vehicle. “His bodyguard, who drives the mayor’s city vehicle, was not on duty,” the Press-Register newspaper reported. And now there are questions about whether the mayor has an Alabama carry permit.

“Here is a municipal mayor who has a bodyguard, and believes it is okay for him to carry a gun, but he belongs to an organization that consistently works to keep everyone else from carrying,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “If the mayor is legally licensed, why does he belong to a group that has fought to prevent law-abiding citizens from exercising their self-defense right?

“If Mayor Jones doesn’t have a permit,” he continued, “then he is a poster child for the double standards that elites like Mayor Michael Bloomberg believe separates them from the citizens they serve. Either way, Mayor Jones owes it to his constituents to show them his carry permit, and to oppose any further attempts by Mayors Against Illegal Guns to prevent private citizens from exercising their constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms.

“It is no surprise that average American citizens are fed up with government officials at all levels,” Gottlieb observed. “We’re glad that Mayor Jones had the means and the willingness to protect his property, but we are stunned and disappointed that he belongs to an organization whose very essence is to make it virtually impossible for average citizens to do likewise.”

What he said.

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What you need to know about Operation Fast and Furious

Posted by Richard on October 12, 2011

Congressional investigators are apparently about to subpoena Attorney General Eric Holder to find out who knew what when regarding Operation Fast and Furious, which led to the deaths of at least 200 people, including Border Patrol Agent Bryan Terry.

Here's the executive summary of Operation Fast and Furious: In an attempt to justify more gun control laws, the Obama administration wanted evidence that Mexican drug cartels were obtaining weapons from US gun stores. So they helped Mexican drug cartels obtain weapons from US gun stores. With the government's help, straw purchasers, some of them paid government informants, bought guns at US gun stores and smuggled them to the cartels in Mexico. The feds forced reluctant gun store owners to facilitate these straw purchases. When even that wasn't enough, ATFE agents themselves bought guns and transferred them to the drug cartels. They did all this without informing the Mexican government or even US ATFE agents in Mexico.

The few mainstream media reports about the operation invariably describe it as "botched." It was not botched. Operation Fast and Furious did exactly what it was designed to do: transfer lots of US guns to Mexican drug cartels in order to prove that Mexican drug cartels got guns from the US, thus justifying more US gun control laws. 

The scam failed only because of the death of Bryan Terry and the subsequent bouts of conscience that led some of the ATFE agents involved to become whistleblowers. 

That's the executive summary. For much more about the government-sponsored criminal enterprise known as Operation Fast and Furious, see Fast And Furious: 22 Shocking Facts About The Scandal That Could Bring Down The Obama Administration.

As somebody pointed out, this is worse than Watergate because no one died at Watergate.

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Indian gun rights group joins international coalition

Posted by Richard on October 11, 2011

The National Association for Gun Rights India (NAGRI) has joined the International Association for the Protection of Civilian Arms Rights (IAPCAR), a coalition of 16 groups from 8 countries dedicated to protecting the natural human right of armed self-defense.

IAPCAR was founded by Julianne Versnel, director of operations for the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) and Alan Gottlieb, Chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA). Via SAF email:

“It is heartening to see groups like NAGRI who are passionate and active for civilian arms rights joining our coalition,” said IAPCAR executive director, Philip Watson.

 “In the wake of the tragic Mumbai massacre, Indians are rethinking their country’s repressive gun restrictions and see the need to empower citizens. Self-defense is a civil right; the denial of this right should not be tolerated,” Watson observed.

 “NAGRI is delighted to be associated with IAPCAR. All pro-gun associations and civil rights organizations should join hands,” said Rakshit Sharma, a representative of NAGRI.

I'm guessing that the people who founded NAGRI in 2010 are familiar with my favorite Mohandas Gandhi quote

Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest.

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Concealed carry comes to Wisconsin

Posted by Richard on June 22, 2011

And then there was one:

Wisconsin stands on the verge of becoming the 49th state in the country to allow citizens to carry concealed guns, after the state Assembly made a bipartisan vote to legalize that practice Tuesday.

The measure passed 68-27, with 11 Democrats voting in favor of the bill along with the body's lone independent and all Republicans except Rep. Don Pridemore (R-Hartford), who had wanted stronger legislation. Rep. Jeff Stone (R-Greendale) said his vote was mistakenly not counted and he would seek to correct that.

The approval of the bill marks one more piece of long-blocked legislation that Republicans have been able to pass now that they control all of state government. The bill to allow the concealed carry of guns and other weapons such as Tasers passed the Senate on a bipartisan vote last week, so approval in the Assembly sends the bill to Gov. Scott Walker, who supports the measure.

Once the measure is signed by Gov. Walker, Illinois will be the only remaining state in the nation that completely bans concealed carry. Nine states issue concealed carry permits, but give the issuing law enforcement agent (usually sheriff or police chief) some discretion on who to approve. The other 40 are "shall issue" states — anyone who meets the statutory requirements (generally some training and no felony conviction or adjudicated mental health problem) must be issued a permit — or "no stinkin' permit required" states (Vermont and Alaska). 

And as a result, our streets are running red with blood as crazed gun nuts shoot it out over parking spaces, cutting in line at the express lane, etc. Oh, wait … they're not. Violent crime continues to decrease as gun sales and carry permits increase.

In fact, it seems almost like violent crime rates are inversely related to rates of gun ownership and carry. Just what you'd expect if (1) the vast majority of people are peaceful and non-violent; (2) violent crimes are almost exclusively committed by a very small percentage of the population who have no moral compass or impulse control and aren't deterred by laws alone; and (3) that small violent minority can be deterred to some extent (and if necessary, stopped) by members of the peaceful majority who are prepared to defend themselves and others.

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Four black men and a gun

Posted by Richard on July 24, 2010

Marcus Cole is a professor of law at Stanford University. He recently posted an homage to four men and a gun that brought a tear to my eye. It begins thus:

As an American, I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to many, many people who have risked and given their lives to defend our liberty. But as I reflect on the recent Supreme Court decision in McDonald v. City of Chicago, I thought I should take a moment to mention four Americans who have made a relatively uncelebrated contribution to the freedom I cherish and enjoy. I owe a special debt to four black men, and one gun.

The most important of these men, to me, was my father. When I was a boy, he and my mother moved our family of six from the Terrace Village public housing projects in Pittsburgh’s Hill District to a predominantly white neighborhood. While many of our neighbors welcomed us, we were not welcomed by all. I recall a brick through the front window, and other incidents. But burned into my memory is the Sunday evening when my father was beaten with a tire iron on the street in front of our home, and in front of us, his four little children. Those three young white men were never caught.

When my father, with his surgically reconstructed eye socket and jaw, was released from the hospital, he did something he never once considered when we lived in the projects. He bought a gun.

Please read the rest. Thank you, Professor Cole.

 

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CSU backs down on gun ban

Posted by Richard on May 6, 2010

Congratulations to Rocky Mountain Gun Owners and Students for Concealed Carry on Campus! On Wednesday, the Board of Governors of Colorado State University rescinded its ill-conceived gun ban.

In contempt of state law (CRS 18-12-204 and CRS 23-31-103), in December the CSU Board of Governors inexplicably urged CSU president Tony Frank to ban all firearms on campus, and he did so — despite the fact that the legislature considered a ban on campus carry (supported by the NRA) when arguing the 2003 concealed carry bill (SB24) and explicitly rejected it. And despite the obvious fact that such bans don't do anything to stop those bent on murder and mayhem — they only disarm and make helpless the peaceful and law-abiding. 

On April 15, the Colorado Court of Appeals voided the University of Colorado's gun ban, and RMGO filed a lawsuit against CSU on the same day. RMGO now plans to go after all the other state campuses that unlawfully deny their students, faculty, and visitors the right of self-defense: 

"They didn't have a legal leg to stand on," said Dudley Brown, Executive Director of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO). "We told them in January, in no uncertain terms, that state law did not allow them to create their own gun ban. Unfortunately, it took a lawsuit to force them to back down."

"This has been a good couple of weeks for law-abiding citizens who want to defend themselves on Colorado campuses, and a terrible week for criminals who assume no one is able to defend themselves on campuses," Brown said. "We're now going to track the policy of every secondary education campus in the state — every community college, every university, all of them — and file suit against those who attempt to violate Colorado law."

"The citizens, students and faculty at these facilities should thank the members and donors of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, the organization responsible for correcting these errant bureaucrats, and Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, who put a lot of hard work into this battle."

I'm a proud Life Member of both RMGO and Gun Owners of America, the national organization with which it's affiliated. Please join me in supporting these fine civil rights organizations.

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More guns, fewer murders

Posted by Richard on December 23, 2009

The Second Amendment Foundation noted that the murder rate declined in the first half of 2009, while gun sales were at record levels:

The FBI released data Monday that shows murders dropped by 10 percent from the same period in 2008. Meanwhile, according to data released by the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) shows that during the first six months of this year, gun sales were up. January 2009 background checks rose 28.8 percent over the same month in 2008, February's NICS checks were up 23.3 percent and in March they were up 29.9 percent over March 2008. The trend continued in April, with NICS checks up 30.3 percent, while May showed a slowdown, up only 15.5 percent, and in June they were up 18.1 percent.

"What this shows," said SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb, "is that gun prohibitionists are all wrong when they argue that more guns result in more crime. Firearms in the hands of law-abiding citizens are no threat to anyone. Perhaps violent criminals were actually discouraged by all of those gun sales earlier this year, because the media made a point of reporting the booming gun market.

"Anti-gunners," he continued, "have lost another one of their baseless arguments. Millions of Americans bought guns during the first six months of this year, many of them for the first time. Yet with all of those new guns in circulation, coupled with an increased demand for concealed carry licenses around the country, the streets have not been awash in blood, as gun banners repeatedly predict.

"Hard facts trump hot air," Gottlieb concluded. "These people are consistently wrong about our rights. Millions of people bought guns, especially semiautomatic sport-utility rifles that gun grabbers want to ban because they say people aren't safe with all of those guns in private hands. Well, the people disagree, and so does the data."

Correlation is not causation — thus one can't assume that the homicide rate will drop 10% for every 20-25% increase in gun sales. But there's a growing body of circumstantial evidence that more guns equals less crime. At the least, we have decades of data disproving the gun banners' fear-mongering about Wild West shootouts and streets awash in blood.

A century of criminological research refutes the notion that murders are committed by "previously law-abiding citizens" who just "snapped" while (or because) they happened to have a gun handy. An overwhelming majority of killers have extensive prior histories of violence and crime. Murderers are aberrant — predatory and/or insane.

Fortunately, violent predators and madmen are fairly scarce. But should you run afoul of one, a gun can protect you when seconds count and the police are minutes away.

"I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy."

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Gun rights leaders oppose Sotomayor

Posted by Richard on July 8, 2009

Leaders of several gun rights groups and activists supporting the Second Amendment have jointly informed the Senate of their strong opposition to the appointment of Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court (emphasis added):

“It is extremely important that a Supreme Court justice understand and appreciate the origin and meaning of the Second Amendment, a constitutional guarantee permanently enshrined in the Bill of Rights, ” said a letter from the group, which was hand-delivered to every member of the U.S. Senate. “Judge Sotomayor’s record on the Second Amendment causes us grave concern about her treatment of this enumerated Constitutional right.”

Included among the signators were Sandra S. Froman, former president of the National Rifle Association; Alan M. Gottlieb, CCRKBA chairman; Joseph Tartaro, SAF president; Gene Hoffman, chairman of the CalGUNS Foundation; several current or former NRA directors; Robert Corbin, former Arizona attorney general and past NRA president; former Congressman Bob Barr; Jim Wallace, executive director of the Gun Owners’ Action League in Massachusetts; John T. lee, president of the Pennsylvania Rifle and Pistol Association; Tom King, president of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association; Robert E. Sanders, former assistant director of law enforcement for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and several others, 25 in all.

“The Supreme Court is almost certain to decide next year whether the Second Amendment applies to states and local governments, as it does to the federal government,” they wrote. “While on the Second Circuit, Judge Sotomayor revealed her views on the right to keep and bear arms in Maloney v. Cuomo, a case decided after Heller, yet holding that the Second Amendment is not a fundamental right, that it does not apply to the states, and that if an object is “designed primarily as a weapon” that is a sufficient basis for total prohibition even within the home. Earlier in a 2004 case, United States v. Sanchez-Villar, Sotomayor and two colleagues perfunctorily dismissed a Second Amendment claim holding that "the right to possess a gun is clearly not a fundamental right." Imagine if such a view were expressed about other fundamental rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, such as the First, Fourth and Fifth Amendments.”

“We joined in this effort,” Gottlieb said, “because our nation stands at point in history where we either defend all civil rights, or begin to surrender them one by one until none are left. It would be unconscionable to stand silently as the Senate deliberates confirmation of a new associate justice with such evident disregard for a key tenet, if not the critical element, of the Bill of Rights.”

“The Second Amendment survives today by a single vote in the Supreme Court,” the letter notes. “Judge Sotomayor has already revealed her views on the right to keep and bear arms and we believe they are contrary to the intent and purposes of the Second Amendment and Bill of Rights.”  

Considering what we already know about Sotomayor's racist ideas, I can't help but wonder (tongue in cheek) whether her opposition to gun rights is absolutist or relative. Does she, perhaps, think that a Hispanic woman in possession of a handgun is likely to use it more wisely than a white male, and thus should be given a pass?  

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Student faces expulsion for fake drill team guns

Posted by Richard on February 9, 2009

I saw this story broadcast on 9News the other night, shook my head in disgust, and went on about my business. Yet another good kid victimized by idiotic "zero tolerance" laws — this sort of thing seems to happen every other day, doesn't it? I'm sorry to say I'm so inured to this stuff that I barely notice these petty outrages anymore.

But Jed (who still isn't back up and running) thinks the blogosphere ought to take note, so I'm happy to oblige:

Marie Morrow, a 17-year-old senior at Cherokee Trail High School in Aurora, is serving a 10-day suspension. Her punishment could be extended at an expulsion hearing later this month.

Morrow is a student leader in the Douglas County Young Marines, a group dedicated to teaching leadership and life skills.

Cherry Creek Schools suspended Morrow after other students reported seeing guns inside her SUV, which was parked outside school while she was in class.

The school also called police, who seized the three drill team guns made of wood, plastic and duct tape. Police told Morrow to claim them in time for her after-school drill practice off-campus.

School administrators, however, were less understanding. The guns were declared "authentic representations of genuine weapons," triggering a mandatory expulsion statute in state law.

"The law doesn't make any distinction between a genuine weapon and a facsimile," said Cherry Creek Schools spokeswoman Tustin Amole.

Amole says federal and state laws mandate expulsion, and that school districts only have discretion to determine the length of that expulsion.

Asked who had the discretion to deem the props "dangerous weapons," Amole said school administrators and police made the decision based on state law that defines a "dangerous weapon" as "a firearm, whether loaded or unloaded, or a firearm facsimile that could reasonably be mistaken for an actual firearm."

Reasonably mistaken for an actual firearm by someone brainwashed with anti-gun propaganda. Or an idiot. Or a school administrator. But I repeat myself.

UPDATE: Check out Zombyboy's story from his misspent youth, which shows just how far we've regressed in the last twenty-odd years.

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Unarmed and helpless

Posted by Richard on December 2, 2008

As news of the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, unfolded, it seemed unbelievable that just 10-15 attackers could cause that much death and destruction. An excellent detailed account of the attacks in Monday's Wall Street Journal helped shed some light.

For some time, John Lott and others have been pointing out that gun-free zones are the preferred hunting grounds of those bent on wholesale killing because they're full of unarmed and helpless victims. "Multiple-victim public shootings keep on occurring in places where guns are banned."

It's clear from the WSJ account that Mumbai (and apparently the whole of India) is a virtually gun-free zone, and this permitted the ten terrorists to roam across the city, slaying people with impunity. In fact, they didn't even have to fear the police! Two of them moved through Mumbai's railroad station, tossing grenades and mowing down travelers with gunfire. Several dozen police officers were on duty at the station, but that made no difference (emphasis added):

B.S. Sidhu, head of the Railway Protection Force for the Mumbai region, says that while some officers tried to fight back, there was little his force could do. Most police officers at the station — as they are throughout India — were unarmed or carried only bamboo sticks known as lathis. More than 40 people, including three police officers, were killed in just a few minutes, authorities said. The wounded survivors screamed for help amid acrid smoke, piles of slumped, bloodied bodies and spilling suitcases.

The same problem allowed the terrorists to march into the Oberoi and Trident hotels and kill with impunity: 

At about 9:45 p.m., two gunmen, slender and in their mid-20s, ran up the circular driveway at the entrance to the Trident. They shot the security guard and two bellhops. The hotel had metal detectors, but none of its security personnel carried weapons because of the difficulties in obtaining gun permits from the Indian government, according to the hotel company's chairman, P.R.S. Oberoi. The gunmen raced through the marble-floored lobby, past the grand piano into the adjoining Verandah restaurant, firing at the guests and shattering the windows.

Later, two of the terrorists ran out of luck at a police roadblock, and the lathis finally served a useful purpose — enabling one of them to be captured alive for later interrogation: 

The three policemen armed with guns drew them. The nine others waved their bamboo sticks. Revving the engine, the car tried to U-turn but got stuck on the median. The man in the passenger seat rolled out and started shooting, killing one officer and wounding another. The surviving baton-wielding officers jumped on him, knocking him unconscious. Policemen with guns shot the driver dead.

In America, the anti-gun crowd is always saying we shouldn't try to defend ourselves, we should dial 911 and let the police protect us. Given that the average response time is 15 minutes, that's not such a good option. But at least if they get there in time, the cops are armed!

In Mumbai, most of the cops were unarmed and helpless victims, just like the civilians they were pretending to protect. In fact, properly trained and equipped forces weren't on hand until they were flown into Mumbai the next morning:

At 6.30 a.m. Thursday, commandos from India's National Security Guard finally arrived — after they first waited for hours while authorities located a plane to pick them up at New Delhi, then waited for transportation from Mumbai's airport to the hotels under attack. The NSG commandos had proper equipment and training. They surrounded both the Taj and the Oberoi complex and a prolonged siege began.

Read the whole thing. It's gripping.

And remember, gun-free zones are helpless-victim zones.

UPDATE: See also this Fox Forum post by John Lott.

UPDATE2 (12/4): Big thanks to Strike the Root for the link, and thanks to everyone who followed it!

Welcome also to Freedom News Daily readers!

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Assault pistol lust

Posted by Richard on August 20, 2008

Jed at FreedomSight has a picture of 45superman's new "dreaded .50 caliber 'assault pistol,'" and a link to the latter's post about it. I'm not sure how this happened, but Jed's picture is better than the ones at Armed and Safe, so start there. But follow the link for more pix and the whole story.

Needless to say, I'd like to have one. But the pix leave me a bit puzzled. With a straight mag in place, I guess you've got options for placement of your support hand. But the drum mag looks like it would only work for lefties. Or am I confused? Maybe I just need a chance to handle the thing and try it out. 🙂

It shouldn't matter that much to me, really. As a right-handed left-eyed freak, I've never really resolved to my satisfaction the issue of how I should shoot — right-handed or left-handed? I tend to go with the former for handguns and the latter for long guns. But I'm open to experimentation.

I blame the cross-dominance for my mediocre skill level. Although lack of range time could enter into it…

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Heller win

Posted by Richard on June 27, 2008

The Heller ruling is in:

WASHINGTON (AFP) — The US Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Americans have a constitutional right to bear arms, ending a ban on owning handguns in the capital city in its first ruling on gun rights in 70 years.

The court's 5-4 landmark decision — on whether the right to keep and bear arms is fundamentally an individual or collective right — said the city's law violated the second amendment of the US constitution which the justices said guaranteed citizens the right to keep guns at home for self-defense.

"There seems to us no doubt, on the basis of both text and history, that the Second Amendment conferred an individual right to keep and bear arms," wrote Justice Antonin Scalia in the court's decision.

He added that while the court took seriously the problem of handgun violence: "The constitution leaves the District of Columbia a variety of tools for combating that problem, including some measures regulating handguns.

"The enshrinement of constitutional rights necessarily takes certain policy choices off the table. These include the absolute prohibition of handguns held and used for self-defense in the home."

It was a victory for gun rights advocates and could have a far reaching impact on gun control legislation across the country. Opponents may now challenge other laws in cities such as New York that restrict the ownership of handguns in the name of public safety.

Scalia wrote the 63-page majority opinion, which was joined by Roberts, Kennedy, Alito, and Thomas. This seems to be a qualified victory, but a victory nonetheless. I've just skimmed the syllabus and the last couple of pages of Scalia's opinion, and this paragraph in the latter jumped out at me:

JUSTICE BREYER chides us for leaving so many applications of the right to keep and bear arms in doubt, and for not providing extensive historical justification for those regulations of the right that we describe as permissible. See post, at 42–43. But since this case represents this Court’s first in-depth examination of the Second Amendment, one should not expect it to clarify the entire field, any more than Reynolds v. United States, 98 U. S. 145 (1879), our first in-depth Free Exercise Clause case, left that area in a state of utter certainty. And there will be time enough to expound upon the historical justifications for the exceptions we have mentioned if and when those exceptions come before us.

So, stay tuned. 

And don't forget, the next President will probably name two or three Supreme Court justices. One more Ginsberg or Breyer and this decision would have gone the other way. In other words, if Bush had not been re-elected, a SCOTUS with two Kerry nominees in place of Scalia and Roberts would have declared that the Second Amendment did not confer an individual right and was essentially null and void. 

If gun rights matter to you, you may want to think about that. And maybe get one of these.  

UPDATE: FreedomSight has a plethora of links, quotes, and biting commentary (and Jed's promising an "in-depth" look at the ruling itself later). At the end of the post, he also has great Kalashnikitty news. Don't miss it. And I'm not just saying that because he quoted and linked to me. 🙂

UPDATE 2: Billll singled out for attention a couple of quotes from the dissenting opinions, one from Stevens and one from Breyer. Go read. If you're like me, you'll involuntarily laugh, then you'll shudder and work to suppress your gag reflex, and then you'll shake your head in disbelief that such men were considered to be among the best jurists in the country and tasked with protecting the Constitution.

Billll's reaction is perfect: "We really don’t need any more like these." Maybe he should get one of these.  

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Jeanne Assam honored

Posted by Richard on December 14, 2007

Jeanne Assam, the armed New Life Church parishioner who saved scores of lives by shooting Matthew Murray, has been honored by the Second Amendment Foundation. Here’s the press release:

BELLEVUE, WA – For her remarkable display of heroism and courage under fire, the Second Amendment Foundation announced today that it will recognize Jeanne Assam, who confronted a gunman on Dec. 9 at the New Life Church shooting in Colorado Springs, with the Eleanor Roosevelt Award.

The Roosevelt award was created by SAF founder Alan Gottlieb, co-author of America Fights Back: Armed Self-Defense in a Violent Age. The award honors exceptional women who use firearms in self-defense and the defense of others. The award is named in memory of former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, who frequently carried a revolver for personal protection, even while she lived in the White House, and during the times that she campaigned in the South for civil rights.

“Jeanne Assam, an armed private citizen who volunteered to provide security at the New Life Church, was suddenly faced with a deadly emergency and without hesitation, disregarding her own safety, she rose to that challenge,” Gottlieb said. “By confronting a killer, Assam undoubtedly saved many lives.

“The news media, perhaps to try diminishing Ms. Assam’s bravery and the significance of her intervention, have revealed her dismissal as a Minneapolis police officer several years ago,” he added. “We concur with church Senior Pastor Brady Boyd, who observed that all of us have past experiences we may regret, and that she should not be ‘convicted or crucified for being a heroine.’ Today, the entire nation should be proud of Jeanne Assam, and grateful that her life’s path led from Minneapolis to Colorado Springs.

“Jeanne Assam did an incredibly brave thing under circumstances that could easily be described as above and beyond the call,” Gottlieb stated. “Every day in this country, armed private citizens defend themselves or others, frequently preventing or stopping crimes. Their actions go largely unrecognized and more frequently ignored by the press and public officials who would rather suppress the notion that Americans can fight back.

“We created the Eleanor Roosevelt Award to recognize the efforts of armed women who practice personal safety,” Gottlieb concluded. “In Jeanne Assam’s case, we are honoring a truly remarkable woman who placed herself in harm’s way for the safety of others. We are humbled by her good and noble deed.”

UPDATE: Check out the excellent editorial about Jeanne Assam and the right to carry at Investor’s Business Daily.

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