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Posts Tagged ‘selfdefense’

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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Restoring self-defense rights in national parks

Posted by Richard on July 13, 2008

The Department of the Interior is accepting public comments on its proposed regulatory change regarding guns in national parks. Right now, firearms can only be transported through a national park if they're unloaded, locked up, disassembled, and have their bores stuffed with Skittles. Or something like that.

I don't know all the details of the new rule, but I understand that it allows people who can legally carry outside the park to carry a loaded weapon inside, thus restoring their right to self-defense.

I encourage you to submit a comment supporting this change, and Instapundit found a way to do so easily, and on the anti-gunners' dime. The National Parks Conservation Association has an online form that lets you submit your comment to the appropriate office, with copies sent to your senators and congresscritter.

NPCA has some suggested language for your comment — some kind of nonsense about how troubled you are by loaded guns — but as Glenn pointed out, you're free to edit the comment (nudge, nudge, wink, wink).

Want some help with your comments? Glenn posted suggested language from Marc Danziger, and my comment is below. I recommend not using either verbatim, but borrow from them to say something in your own words. 

My submission (with a stupid typo corrected after the fact — d'oh!):

 I'm very pleased that the administration is considering allowing loaded guns in national parks. Forty states routinely permit honest, law-abiding citizens to carry weapons so they can defend themselves and their families. Contrary to the claims of gun banners, this has led to less crime and violence, not more.

The same will be true in our national parks. That's because, just like in Washington, New York, and Chicago, the people inclined to commit violent crime don't pay any attention to gun bans. So these restrictions serve only to disarm the honest, peaceful people and leave them at the mercy of predators.

Arguably, the need for guns is greater in the backcountry or at remote campsites and trailheads. Help is far away, and we are on our own. Sometimes, not even a cell phone call to 911 is possible.

I urge you to adopt this sensible step toward recognizing our self-defense rights in our national parks. Thank you for considering my views.

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Second Amendment Carnival XI

Posted by Richard on April 24, 2007

I finally got around to checking out this month's Second Amendment Carnival at Free Constitution, and I encourage you to drop by if you have even a passing interest in firearms-rights issues. I've barely sampled the many links, and I've seen some serious, high-quality, thought-provoking posts. Some pretty funny and fun stuff, too.

For instance, Acme Anvil Co. argued persuasively (and with tongue in cheek, I assume) that a Guiliani administration would buy you a gun if you can't afford one. More seriously, Politics, Guns & Beer (great name for a blog) compared carrying a gun to wearing a seat belt in a terrific treatise on firearms — and it's only Part 1. How does a 21-year-old coed from Idaho become so wise?

Beyond that, you'll find links to Rhymes With Right, The Smallest Minority, Say Uncle, LawDog, and more — a fine collection of posts that you really should check out. 

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Paternalism and passivity

Posted by Richard on April 21, 2007

(The first part of this post is a slightly edited version of a comment I originally added to Whither the Warrior Spirit?)

On Tuesday, I caught part of ABC's Nightline coverage of the Virginia Tech killings. They interviewed three students in Professor Liviu Librescu's class. Librescu was the 76-year-old Holocaust survivor who held his classroom door shut while his students fled out the windows. He was shot through the door and killed. Read about him at The Jerusalem Post.

The three students were males and looked reasonably fit. One seemed on the small side (maybe 5'8"), one was in between, and the third looked like a football player — over six feet, muscular, over 200 pounds.

They described the sound of gunfire, the fear and panic, the screaming from adjacent rooms. They talked about how they opened the windows, lined up, climbed out, and dropped to the ground. They described seeing Professor Librescu at the classroom door holding it shut.

None of these three strapping young men explained how and why they left a 76-year-old man to guard the door against a homicidal maniac while they fled to safety. None felt any need to explain or apologize or mention the moral quandary they faced at all. They weren't asked. It just never came up. Apparently, it never occurred to them (or their interviewer) that there was a moral quandary. 

How can this be? These three men thanked Professor Librescu. But it never even occurred to them to apologize to him and his family. How can this possibly be?

Admittedly, three is a small sample — but it disturbs me that these three gentlemen felt not an iota of shame or doubt. What kind of people are these that they won't even acknowledge the possibility of their own cowardice? That they don't even realize they had alternative courses of action? That they seem incapable even of self-examination?

With that as an introduction, I commend to you Mark Steyn's column, A Culture of Passivity:

On Monday night, Geraldo was all over Fox News saying we have to accept that, in this horrible world we live in, our “children” need to be “protected.”

Point one: They’re not “children.” The students at Virginia Tech were grown women and — if you’ll forgive the expression — men. They would be regarded as adults by any other society in the history of our planet. Granted, we live in a selectively infantilized culture where twentysomethings are “children” if they’re serving in the Third Infantry Division in Ramadi but grown-ups making rational choices if they drop to the broadloom in President Clinton’s Oval Office. Nonetheless, it’s deeply damaging to portray fit fully formed adults as children who need to be protected. We should be raising them to understand that there will be moments in life when you need to protect yourself — and, in a “horrible” world, there may come moments when you have to choose between protecting yourself or others. It is a poor reflection on us that, in those first critical seconds where one has to make a decision, only an elderly Holocaust survivor, Professor Librescu, understood instinctively the obligation to act.

Steyn illustrated his point two by recounting a Montreal mass murder with which I wasn't familiar, a story that left my jaw agape and chilled me to the bone. Go. Read.

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Whither the Warrior Spirit?

Posted by Richard on April 17, 2007

It's a touchy thing, second-guessing how people responded in a crisis. I wasn't there in that Virginia Tech classroom building, and I can't say for certain how I would have reacted had I been there. But there have been news reports that some of the victims were lined up and executed. At least one student survivor reported that the gunman burst into the classroom and started shooting, and they all "hit the floor" and waited for their bullet. This deeply saddens me.

Libercontrarian had a similar reaction, and some apropos comments:

For the mad dog who is only interested in slaughter, only three things can make him quit: suicide, attack by an organized security force, and disarmament by the pool of as-yet uninjured victims. The first two have the annoying tendency of coming well after the terminus of the event, thus resulting in the highest casualties. The last is what stops cold the attack, but requires the will to not be like the citizens of Babi-Yar, who marched nervously to the unending hammering of the machine guns, telling themselves that the Germans were giving them delousing showers. This perhaps requires the greatest courage: to take the chance that by risking more, personally, you may end the affair before it reaches the originator's intent. That is the Warrior Spirit.

I am not sure that there is an answer here. I would, however, prefer to be armed if I was to be locked into a room with a crazed gunman. I would hope for a bit of the Warrior Spirit to rely upon in any case – I could conceive no worse end than pleading with some twisted individual, on my knees, living my last several moments knowing that I was unable to prevent my death because of my fear of losing the opportunity to get away without confronting the evil that has revealed itself before me.

But the definitive articulation of what Libercontrarian and I felt came from LawDog (HT: FreedomSight):

There are reports — granted unconfirmed at this time — that several students were forced to line up, kneeling, and executed from behind.

I pray to the old gods — the gods of war and blood and thunder — that this is not the case.

I pray that some students went down fighting.

Because as bad as this is — and this is a horror — as bad as this is, if fifty some-odd people were injured and killed by one person whilst on their knees begging like so many Eloi, like a herd of sheep — if no one stood up and fought back, then this is becomes an example of evil.

Not the evil that allows a man to kill other men — although that is here in abundance. No, I am speaking of the putrescent evil which convinces good men not to fight back; the sordid filth of the soul which allows one bad man to prevail against fifty — or 25,000 — good men because good men have been systematically denied the mindset required to meet with, engage and defeat evil — even if all you have is fingernails and rage.

I beg you to go read the rest. I dare you to not be moved. 

 

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Feeling safer vs. being safer

Posted by Richard on April 16, 2007

VT flag at half-mastVirginia blogger Doug Mataconis appropriately noted that "Today, We’re All Hokies." But in an update to his earlier post about the shootings, he linked to a Roanoke Times article from earlier this year about the death of a campus self-defense rights bill in the Virginia legislature (emphasis added):

A bill that would have given college students and employees the right to carry handguns on campus died with nary a shot being fired in the General Assembly.

Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker was happy to hear the bill was defeated. "I'm sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly's actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus."

Apparently, a similar bill was defeated last year, too. Last August, the Student Center at VT was evacuated during a manhunt for a murderer. Dymphna at Gates of Vienna has excerpts from two contrasting commentaries in the wake of that incident. One was by Bradford B. Wiles, a graduate student who was evacuated. Wiles had a carry permit, but was unarmed while on campus because of the university's anti-gun policy (emphasis added):

Of all of the emotions and thoughts that were running through my head that morning, the most overwhelming one was of helplessness.

That feeling of helplessness has been difficult to reconcile because I knew I would have been safer with a proper means to defend myself.

I would also like to point out that when I mentioned to a professor that I would feel safer with my gun, this is what she said to me, "I would feel safer if you had your gun."

Commenter Amy Kovak rejected Wiles' argument (emphasis added):

At the risk of being accused of being a member of the liberal media, I'll put it out there that I don't particularly feel safe knowing that people can carry guns around me — even if those people have licenses to do so.

I suppose everyone wants to feel safer. Many people want to feel safer so badly that they fool themselves into believing the most nonsensical things. Apparently, Larry Hincker and Amy Kovak believed that prohibiting guns on campus would automatically prevent people from carrying guns on campus, thus making them safer.

Brad Wiles and his professor friend wanted to feel safer, too. Wiles didn't just want to feel safer, though — he wanted to be safer. Would being armed have made him so on that day? Maybe, maybe not. Guns aren't any more magical and foolproof than gun bans. But there's a lot more reason, logic, and evidence backing Wiles than there is behind the wishful thinking of Hincker and Kovak.

I wonder if Wiles was on the VT campus today, and if he was still disarmed and helpless. I wonder if Hincker and Kovak were on campus. If so, I wonder when exactly they stopped feeling safe in their gun-ban cocoon.

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Passengers beat hijacker

Posted by Richard on February 16, 2007

The era of airliner hijackings really is over. After 9/11, it’s doubtful that you could find an airplane anywhere full of people who’ll sit still for someone commandeering their flight. Not even in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania:

TENERIFE, Canary Islands (AP) – A quick–thinking pilot thwarted a gun–toting hijacker on a flight from Africa to Spain’s Canary Islands by discreetly warning passengers he would brake hard upon landing, then speed up just as abruptly to knock the man off balance – and telling them to be ready to pounce, Spanish officials said Friday.

The trick worked to perfection, with travelers and crew waiting until the hijacker was on the floor to douse him in the face and chest with boiling water from a coffee machine and beat him into submission.

"The man deserves a medal," Air Mauritania spokesman Ahmedou Ahmedou said of the company’s veteran pilot after the ordeal Thursday evening.

The hijacker, who wanted to be flown to France in order to request political asylum, brandished two pistols. Apparently, airport security isn’t so hot in Mauritania.

So, how did the clever pilot and passengers pull off this trick?

Speaking to the gunman during the hijacking, the pilot realized the man did not understand French. So he used the plane’s public address system to warn the passengers in French of the ploy he was going to try: slam on the brakes upon landing, then accelerate abruptly. The idea was to catch the hijacker off balance, and have crew members and men sitting in the front rows of the plane jump on him, the Spanish official said.

The pilot warned women and children to move to the back rows of the plane in preparation for the subterfuge, the official said.

It worked. As the plane landed on Gran Canaria, the man was standing in the middle aisle when the pilot carried out his maneuver, and he fell to the floor, dropping one of his two 7mm pistols. Flight attendants then threw boiling water in his face and at his chest, and some 10 people jumped on the man and beat him, the Spanish official said.

According to at least one Spanish news source, authorities are looking into the possibility that there’s more to this hijacking than meets the eye:

The security forces are questioning – via an interpreter – the hijacker and are investigating whether anybody else was involved in the attack, after one passenger said that other people possibly could have been in on the plan.

Eyewitnesses said they had seen several people take off running across the airport’s runways after exiting the plane.

Hmm.
 

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Safer schools

Posted by Richard on September 28, 2006

Yesterday’s school shooting in Bailey, an idyllic mountain community 40 miles southwest of Denver, has people talking about school safety again. CBS4Denver did a news segment entitled "Why Aren’t Our Schools Safer?" The only concrete suggestions were: (1) put in lots of security cameras; (2) have only one entrance, with "watchful eyes" on it.

In the Bailey incident, a stranger walked in off the street, gun drawn, and fired warning shots. How would it have helped to have an extra video camera or an unarmed, defenseless person watching the gunman as he entered?

Years ago, the Israelis had a problem with Paleostinian gunmen attacking schoolchildren. They armed the teachers and staff, and the attacks on schools stopped. In fact, the Paleostinians largely gave up attacking civilians with small arms when it became standard practice for the intended victims to shoot back.

The Paleostinians developed the tactic of suicide bombing as an alternative. It’s unlikely to become popular with people other than the crazed Jihadists who "love death."

One big safety problem with our schools is their designation as "gun-free zones." This ensures any criminal or madman bent on violence that all the law-abiding people inside are unarmed and helpless. Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, somehow the liberals — and even many conservatives — have managed to convince themselves that a "No Guns Allowed" sign has some sort of magical power to deter a sociopath who’s prepared to commit mayhem, rape, and murder.

If you’re a non-gun-owner, listen to me carefully: You are not safer in a "gun-free zone" — you are less safe. Always. Even if you don’t choose to arm yourself ever. The "gun-free" designation cannot and will not protect you from violent predators or reckless and irresponsible people. But it can prevent honest, responsible, concerned people from coming to your defense.

Don’t get me wrong — I’m not claiming that more guns are a panacea. There are no panaceas, and utopia is not an option. I’m simply saying that it’s foolish and irresponsible to pretend you can remove all guns when you can only remove those that are least likely to do harm and most likely to do good.
 

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Justice requires a disproportionate response

Posted by Richard on July 19, 2006

On Tuesday, I mentioned Neo-neocon’s post about the danger of proportionality. Well, Baron Bodissey at Gates of Vienna wrote brilliantly about this nonsense of proportionality on Monday:

If you could cut through all the Kofi-speak to the heart of the matter, what do you think would be a “proportionate” response to the provocations Israel has endured? Do the Israelis have to fire Qassam rockets into Gaza at Hamas? Do Jewish kids have to strap on bomb belts and blow themselves up in Ramallah?

As someone recently said, it’s like a bank robbery — when the call comes in that three men are robbing a bank, then the cops can only send in three patrolmen to stop them.

Or imagine that you’re woken up in the middle of the night by a burglar in the living room. You grab your twelve-gauge and creep down the stairs very quietly. But when you flip on the light and surprise the burglar, he’s armed with only a knife! What do you do? Why, you drop the shotgun, rush to the kitchen, and rummage through the drawers for a knife. And not just any knife — it has to be no longer or sharper than the one the burglar has!

The contemptible blather about "disproportionate response" comes from people who refuse to distinguish between the aggressor and the victim — who remain morally neutral as to which one ought to prevail, and thus believe that "fairness" requires each to have an equal chance.

I'm a fan of disproportionate responseFor those of us who insist that there is no right to rape, mug, burgle — or murder (again!) six million Jews — the concept of proportionality of response is a moral abomination. The correct response to aggression is whatever is necessary to stop it, to punish the aggressor, and to prevent repetition of the aggression in the future. The correct response to Islamofascism is to wipe it out.

Decent people, of course, do their best to minimize harm to innocent bystanders — and the extremely low number of deaths, given the number of air strikes and artillery bombardments, makes it clear that Israel is taking extraordinary measures in this regard. Perhaps too much so.

It’s not only unwise, it’s downright wrong to stay your hand so much that the aggressor might win — or survive to prey on more victims in the future. Don’t those future victims have just as much claim on your concern as the bystanders today? More so, in my opinion, if the bystanders aren’t so innocent — and that’s certainly the case for most of the "civilian casualties" counted up by the media in southern Lebanon. These are the people who support Hezbollah, store Hezbollah weapons in their houses, and cheer on and resupply the Hezbollah fighters — likely, their brothers and sons — firing rockets from their doorsteps.

I’m joining the good Baron, and saying to our friends in Israel, "Bring on the Disproportionate Response!"

UPDATE: Welcome, visitors from The Atheist Jew — please have a look around. You may see some post titles in the left sidebar that interest you.

UPDATE 2: The latest version of the proportionality complaint, blathered about endlessly on MSM outlets on Thursday, is the disparity between the number of Israeli deaths and Lebanese deaths (which are almost all Hezbollah deaths). The morally neutral "fairness" advocates object to the fact that Israel wages war more effectively than Hezbollah!

Would these asshats like to see an international Handicapper General, a la Harrison Bergeron, reduce the effectiveness of Israel’s weapons, tactics, and troops so that they don’t have an unfair advantage over the genocidal maniacs on the other side?

If you’re not familiar with Kurt Vonnegut’s short story masterpiece, Harrison Bergeron, click that link and read it right now.
 

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Crime among the armed vs. the disarmed

Posted by Richard on July 13, 2006

From CCRKBA:

BELLEVUE, WA – Florida Gov. Jeb Bush “nailed it” when he told reporters in Tallahassee – in reaction to the state’s drop in crime – that armed citizens are part of the equation, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) said today.

Gov. Bush was quoted in the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel noting, “Law abiding citizens that have guns for protection actually probably are part of the reason we have a lower crime rate.”

Florida is one of 40 states with “right-to-carry” statutes that give citizens the ability to carry concealed handguns with the proper license. Last year, Florida also passed legislation that enables citizens to “stand their ground” and fight back when attacked in a public place where they have a right to be.

“Gov. Bush has once again demonstrated progressive thinking, and a clear understanding about what works to stop criminals in their tracks,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “Legally-armed citizens are a threat to nobody but criminals, and Florida’s crime statistics prove that the presence of firearms in the hands of law-abiding citizens benefits the entire community. In explaining why crime rates have dropped, we think Gov. Bush nailed it.”

“Isn’t it ironic,” added CCRKBA Executive Director Joe Waldron, “that while Florida, with an armed citizenry, is enjoying a drop in crime, Washington, D.C., where citizens are legally disarmed, is experiencing a crime epidemic? In the nation’s capitol, where the Second Amendment has been literally suspended by municipal government fiat, armed assaults are up 18 percent in the past month and robberies have jumped 14 percent. Yet law-abiding citizens cannot arm themselves for protection. It’s an outrage.”

“No matter where they live,” Gottlieb concluded, “American citizens have a right to defend themselves. Progressive states like Florida with sensible concealed carry and self-defense laws will lead this nation out of the Dark Ages of insane gun control and broken justice systems. This new data shows that the gun control and criminal rights extremists have been wrong, something we’ve known all along.”

While Florida celebrated the falling crime rate, Washington, D.C., declared a crime emergency:

Two groups of tourists were robbed at gunpoint on the National Mall, just hours after the police chief declared a crime emergency in the city in response to a string of violence that included the killing of a British activist.

The activist, Alan Senitt, was attacked in the Georgetown area on Sunday, his throat was slit and police say the attackers attempted to rape his companion. It was the 13th homicide in the city this month. Robberies are up 14 percent, and armed assaults have jumped 18 percent in the past 30 days.

On Wednesday, U.S. Park Police were looking for connections between the latest Mall robberies and three similar incidents in the area in late May. There have been no arrests in any of those cases.

District of Columbia Police Chief Charles Ramsey declared a crime emergency in the city after Senitt, a volunteer for the potential presidential campaign of former Virginia Gov. Mark R. Warner, was killed.

The tourist-friendly National Mall, which is under the jurisdiction of Park Police rather than D.C. police, is usually considered safe. But the recent crimes against tourists have raised calls for a larger police presence.

Police are asking Mall visitors to "be our eyes and ears," [Park Police Sgt.] Fear said. "We’re going to ask them to be vigilant."

"Fear" — what an appropriate name for a D.C. Park Policeman. Defenseless, disarmed eyes and ears –that’s been working real well for you, hasn’t it, Sgt. Fear?
 

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Carnival of Cordite #64

Posted by Richard on July 10, 2006

Carnival of Cordite #64 is up at Spank That Donkey, and once again, Chris put a lot of work into it and did a terrific job. Well, except for one embarrassing little mix-up. Say Uncle posted something about Hilleary being pro-gun, and Chris did a cyber spit-take: "Hillary pro-gun?"

Umm, that’s Van Hilleary, Chris — a Senate candidate in Tennessee. Go ahead and correct yourself, OK? πŸ˜‰

So drop on by, have a chuckle at Chris’ expense, and peruse the plethora of posts. If you visit using IE (hey, it’s not that bad), you can listen to the audio clips and, if you’re fast enough, maybe win a T-shirt. It’s a pretty damn easy song contest, unless you’re an ignorant 20-something kid brought up on hip-hop. πŸ™‚
 

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Sad story

Posted by Richard on April 1, 2006

James R. Rummel, who blogs at Hell In A Handbasket, teaches firearms and self-defense skills. (No, I don’t know if he’s any relation to R.J. Rummel. I don’t see any biographical info at his blog.) I’m not sure why his post about an aborted lesson moved me so much, but it did. I think it’s one of the saddest, most touching stories I’ve read in a long time, and Rummel tells it beautifully. Here’s the beginning:

It started off well enough. I put the easel together and stacked on the visual aids. Show her the poster, read the labels out loud. These are the parts of a handgun, these are the parts of a cartridge. Now the safety lecture, the rules of safe firearm handling that are never to be broken. When I was satisfied she knew the material it was time to uncase the guns and let her handle them.

What was her mood? Think “resolute”. She had survived the worst moment of her life, something that had been more horrible and terrifying than she had ever imagined, and she wanted to make sure that it never happened again. A grim look stole into her eyes as she dry fired the Magnum, and I knew that it would be the last thing the next rapist saw. Right then, for that brief and fragile moment, it was a good day to be alive.

Go read the rest. You may want to have a Kleenex handy.

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