Saturday, April 10, 2010

Arizona's New Laws

AZCentral reports.

Within the next week, Arizona could become the first state with a large urban population to allow U.S. citizens 21 and older to carry a concealed firearm without a permit. Only Alaska and Vermont have similar allowances.

Senate Bill 1108, crafted by Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, passed in the House of Representatives on Thursday with a vote of 36-19 and no comments from either side.

The bill will go to the governor Monday, and Gov. Jan Brewer will have until the following Saturday to sign it, veto it, or do nothing and allow it to become law. The law would go into effect 90 days after the legislative session ends, which could happen within the next few weeks.

What's wrong with these people? They started with a good idea, that having a gun can be useful for self-defense, then they kept pushing and pushing until the so-called "right" goes beyond the realm of common sense. The gun apologists are quick to point out that Vermont and Alaska have this policy and they're not awash in gun violence. I'm not sure that's exactly true, but in this article it was made very clear there's a big difference.

Arizona could become the first state with a large urban population to allow U.S. citizens 21 and older to carry a concealed firearm without a permit.
They mentioned "with a large urban population." They might have added, "with a large urban population in which there already is a lot of gun violence."

The training requirements to get the permit would change under the proposed law. John Thomas, lobbyist for the Arizona Chiefs of Police, said the new provisions don't require the training class to be a set number of hours or include any hands-on use of the weapon.

A background check would still be required to get a permit, as well as to buy a gun in most cases. Brewer this week signed another law that exempts guns made and kept in Arizona from federal regulation, including background checks.

No training requirements will be required. Way to go, Arizona. That one makes a lot of sense, huh? And even better is the doing away with the background check for guns made and kept in-state. I wish someone would tell us how that'll make the world a better place.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Stemming the Flow

Thanks to in Houston

What do you think about the 30 million unregistered cell phones? Could that be a way to make the richest man in the world even richer? Or, is that really going to help with the Mexican War on Drugs?

Speaking of which, is this a different kind of "War on Drugs" than the one in the States that everyone seems to think is a mistake?

Do you think it's good to attempt to raise awareness among gun dealers about the problem of straw purchasers?

What's your opinion. Please leave a comment.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Michigan Man Shoots Himself by Accident

Ohh Shoot has the story.

Man waiting in car at gas station unintentionally shoots self

A 21-year-old Michigan man shot himself in the leg while his family was stopped at a local gas station. The man was sitting in the backseat of his father's pick-up truck while his father was pumping gas when he unintentionally shot himself with his father's 40-caliber Glock handgun.
The father rushed his son to the local hospital were he is listed in good condition. Both father and son have licenses to carry a concealed weapon.
Ohh shoot.
That last line is worth repeating.

Both father and son have licenses to carry a concealed weapon.
Is it so rare? Is it really insignificant when an event like this happens? Or does this dangerous irresponsibility run through the entire gun-owning world?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Grandmother Charged in 3-year-old's Death reports on the case of a woman charged with the death of her 3-year-old granddaughter.

A Detroit woman charged in the death of her 3-year-old granddaughter who was killed while playing with a handgun has pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter.

The Wayne County prosecutor's office said Wednesday in a release that 44-year-old Dawn Bostick has agreed to a sentencing agreement that includes five years' probation, parenting classes and a ban on possession of firearms.

Bostick also faced second-degree child abuse and felony firearm charges.

Police say the grandmother was in another part of the house on Dec. 10 when the girl accidentally fired a 9-millimeter handgun that was left unlocked in a bedroom nightstand.

Prosecutors say the girl was under Bostick's care.

Bostick will be sentenced April 28.
Does that sound right to you? I know some of the pro-gun crowd like to emphasize personal responsibility, but in a case like this, I don't think even they would say the 3-year-old was at fault. Would that mean they accept the "shared responsibility" theory that I'm always talking about? Or does it end when a kid reaches a certain age?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

DC Gun Ban Upheld

Another one of the "righty" blogs that I look at is the Volokh Conspiracy. FishyJay sent me the link to this post, which I enjoyed, but it's the comments that really amaze.

After a confidential informant bought 1.9 grams of crack cocaine from defendant Brandon Hendrix on April 21, 2009, law enforcement officers obtained a warrant to search his residence. When they arrived, they found defendant present and under the influence of marijuana, crack cocaine and alcohol. Their search uncovered a loaded SKS rifle, a .45 caliber Ruger pistol, a Winchester shotgun, ammunition, knives and drug paraphernalia. Defendant was arrested the next day and charged in federal court with knowing and unlawful possession of firearms while being an unlawful user of marijuana and crack cocaine, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(3)....

[D]efendant’s argument fails because he has not shown that he is subject to any real burden. If he does not use controlled substances, then § 922(g)(3) imposes no restriction on his possession of guns. If he chooses to use them, then he cannot legally possess a gun. The choice is his, not the government’s....

[I]t is not necessary to consider ... whether a person prosecuted under § 922(g)(3) should be subject to a lifetime ban on gun possession, the natural consequence of a felony conviction for violation of this statute. One could argue that the prohibition should not last any longer than the person’s use of controlled substances, but defendant has neither made this argument nor suggested that he would qualify for relief if it were adopted, so I will not address it.

I think one of the reasons the Volokh Conspiracy is so popular is because of that sexy lawyer-talk. Non-lawyers like me feel proud of ourselves for just being able to follow. And who would dare question anything?

The comments immediately went into a discussion of the 1st Amendment and free speech.

What's your opinion? Should a person who uses drugs be allowed to own guns? Should the marijuana smoker be allowed and the crack cocaine smoker not be? How do you think it should work?

My idea is since there are too many guns around now, we should tighten up in every way possible. Using drugs, drunkenness, abuse of any kind should all be disqualifiers. Why would legitimate gun owners who don't involve themselves in those activities object? Wouldn't this benefit them as well?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

How Low Can You Go?

Glenn Beck's obsessive personal attacking of the President has reached new lows even as his twisting of the facts and his exaggerated delivery reach new heights.

What do you think?

Teacher Faces Student with Gun

The Star Tribune of Minneapolis reports on a teacher who successfully dealt with a gun-wielding eigth-grader.

A teacher who calmly asked a 14-year-old boy who twice burst into his classroom brandishing a .22-caliber revolver "What can I do, and how can I help you?" is credited with averting potential bloodshed at Hastings Middle School on Monday morning.

At 10:30 a.m. Monday he had just begun his fourth-hour Earth Science lesson when the terror began.

"I had just finished taking attendance and just introducing the lesson and activities that we were going to be doing for the day. ... My classroom door was open," Rapatz said. A student who was supposed to be in Rapatz's class at that hour entered -- with a drawn pistol.

"It didn't seem like he was pointing it at any particular student, he was kind of moving it around," Rapatz said. "My response -- first of all, I was shocked and surprised -- but within a second or two of seeing the pistol, it was 'Hey, let's stay calm here. What can I do, and how can I help you?' is what I remember saying. And his response was, he wanted everyone to get on the ground."

Rapatz said he held steady and didn't respond to the demand. "He was pretty much in control and anything could have happened. I was just trying to calm the situation. I was trying to defuse it."

The boy again demanded, more forcefully, that the students lay on the floor. Rapatz told the boy: "No. I can help you; what do you need?" The boy turned and left without saying a word, Rapatz said.

This is the way it's done in a sensible world. Teachers aren't carrying concealed weapons waiting for a situation like this. The intention is to defuse not to escalate and certainly not to shoot eigth-graders. Of course, no one system works all the time, but this is a perfect example of how it should work.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Confederates, Republicans and Racists

The Huffington Post reported on the wonderful celebration going on in Virginia this month. That new governor is really great for state pride, don't you think?

Virginia's Republican Governor Bob McDonnell has declared April to be "Confederate History Month," the first time in 8 years that such a proclamation has been issued in the state.

In the statement, McDonnell says that the Confederate history "should not be forgotten, but instead should be studied, understood and remembered," and that its leaders "fought for their homes and communities and Commonwealth in a time very different than ours today."

Over at Driftglass, where I found this wonderful news, here's what they had to say.

No. its leaders did not fight for "their homes and communities and Commonwealth."

Its leaders fought for the right to keep other human being as slaves: to work them like animals and kill them at will.

Its leaders fought for the right to enforce the institution of slavery with state-sanctioned terror and murder.

Its leaders were known as "Confederates".

To preserve and defend their monstrous institution, Confederates spent centuries constructing massive social, economic, religious and cultural fortifications around it.

Like hemophilia, Confederates passed that comprehensive social, economic, religious and cultural worldview down generation after generation.

Like syphilis, to this day Confederates continue to spread that social, economic, religious and cultural worldview everywhere they go.

About 40 years ago, the Confederates changed their name.

Now they are known as "Republicans".

Yes, indeed, racism is alive and well in America, especially among our conserviative friends. I don't particularly go for those comparisons to hemophilia and syphilis, I think of it more as a poison, a mental poison, but the point is valid. It's been passed down through generaltions, especially virulent and vibrant in the South.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

George Carlin on Hygiene

From Patterico's Pontifications, one of my favorite righty blogs.

Prof. Goodwin Liu

Liberal Viewer points out the incredible manipulation used by Fox News.

Prof. Liu says some interesting things about the "concept of responsibility" and the "moral duty to make things right."

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

More on the Hutaree

Media Matters for America has an interesting article about the Hutaree and other militia groups and Glenn Beck's role.

On TV and the radio, Beck rarely bothers to mention the militia movement by name. Instead, he's simply co-opted their rhetoric as his own. He's acted as a crucial transmitter, warning about Obama fronting his own private "army," and urging followers to "start food storage."

Not to mention these previous militia moments:

The truth is that the daylight separating the radical, anti-government militia movement from self-styled mainstream conservatives is growing dimmer by the day. Like the fact-free Obama birthers, the militia remains a radical subset that today's right wing refuses to part ways with. That sad fact was highlighted when scores of far-right media voices initially downplayed the Hutaree arrests last week, or even defended the militia members and -- disturbingly reminiscent of Waco -- cast the FBI and the federal government as the over-reaching bad guys.

What's your opinion? Do you think Beck is an innocuous and harmless presence in America? Are the individuals who act out the only ones responsible for their actions? Does that count even for those who are captivated and practically hypnotized by personalities like Back?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Balance of the Supreme Court

I say he should put Cass Sunstein on there right now. And then we can hope for the opportunity to replace one or two conservative Justices, which will straighten out the balance.

What do you think?

Easter Sunday Riddled with Gun Shots reported on the several gun incidents in Topeka, Kansas during Easter Sunday.

Topeka, KAN. (WIBW)--Topeka police are investigating a drive-by shooting that occurred in the Highland Park area Sunday night.

They responded around 8:40 after multiple calls from neighbors claiming they heard gun shots in the area. Once on scene, were told police found a lot of bullet holes in a town home in the 2300 block of S.E. Bellview.

Crime scene investigators were on scene searching for clues as there appears to be no victims from the incident.

Gunfire was also reported in the Chesney Park area around 8:20 Sunday night. Officers found a few shell casings at the intersection of S.W. 19th and Clay. A fight reportedly occurred there a short time earlier that resulted in a man suffering head injuries.

Police also responded to 21st and California where more gunshots were heard. Police said no injuries occurred.

I think one would have to live in Europe to realize what a particularly American headline that is. Where else in the modern world can you see such a thing? Gun owners and gun rights supporters should be proud of themselves for making the United States the laughing stock of the 1st World.

What's your opinion? No, wait, I know. These are criminals acting out with guns and they have nothing to do with legitimate gun owners and gun rights supporters. Isn't that the story?

Please leave a comment.

Virginia Background Checks

The Washington Post reports that in Virginia background checks for gun purchases can take several hours or longer.

Background checks for firearm purchases in Virginia are taking longer because of state police staff cuts and strong demand for guns.

Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller says the agency's Virginia Firearms Transaction Center has lost 11 employees since May 2009.

Meanwhile, demand is rising. Between 2000 and 2009, firearms transactions in Virginia increased from 182,170 to 287,462.

During peak periods, Geller says background checks can now take to four to six hours to complete. Some that require research into out-of-state records take overnight.

Virginia Citizens Defense League President Philip Van Cleave says the delays are costing dealers money and putting at risk people who need firearms for protection.

Now, I realize no one likes to be inconvenienced, and that goes especially for gun buyers, but don't you think it's a bit much to say this is "putting at risk people who need firearms for protection?" I mean, if the urgency is so great, they could just pop into the local gun show or arrange for a private sale through a newspaper ad or over the internet. Then there's no waiting and as an additional bonus, they wouldn't even have to have a clean record.

What's you opinion? Please leave a comment.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Gun Confiscation is Coming

Desert Conservative published a fascinating article warning of the imminent gun confiscations which are being organized by the Obama administration.

On Wednesday Obama Took the First Major Step in a Plan to Ban All Firearms in the United States. The Obama administration intends to force gun control and a complete ban on all weapons for US citizens through the signing of international treaties with foreign nations. By signing international treaties on gun control, the Obama administration can use the US State Department to bypass the normal legislative process in Congress. Once the US Government signs these international treaties, all US citizens will be subject to those gun laws created by foreign governments. These are laws that have been developed and promoted by organizations such as the United Nations and individuals such as George Soros and Michael Bloomberg. The laws are designed and intended to lead to the complete ban and confiscation of all firearms.

At first glance I thought this was paranoid nonsense. Then when I read it through I was sure it was paranoid nonsense. What do you think? Are these guys serious.

First of all, didn't it come out a couple months ago that Hilary agreed to this international agreement as long as they had a consensus? That's what I remember. Secondly, if this means "US citizens will be subject to those gun laws created by foreign governments," how do Bloomberg and Soros enter into it? What foreign governments are they with?

To me this sounds like more paranoid Obama bashing. I wonder if the folks putting this stuff out really believe it or if they're just acting like shills for the gun manufacturers who are hoping for another surge in sales, greedy businessmen that they are.

What's your opinion? Is there another way to understand this kind of hysteria? Do you think it's true?

Please leave a comment.

Meteorite Insurance

Thanks again to FishyJay.

Doubly Divisive

FishyJay sent us another good one. reported on the story.

U.S. state attorneys general challenging the new healthcare law will use a 1995 Supreme Court decision in a gun case as a central argument, experts say.

In a lawsuit challenging the law's mandate that everyone must have health insurance, the 13 state attorneys general, including Gregg Abbot of Texas, cite the court's ruling in a Texas gun possession case in their arguments, The Houston Chronicle reported Sunday.

A Texas high school student was convicted for bringing a gun onto campus in 1992, but the U.S. Supreme Court overturned his conviction in 1995, saying Congress exceeded its constitutional regulatory authority when it approved the 1990 law banning firearms in a school zone, the newspaper said.

The Constitution's commerce clause limits the regulatory powers of Congress to matters involving interstate commerce. In the Texas case, the Supreme Court ruled that the 1990 gun law was unconstitutional because it had nothing to do with commerce between states.

The attorneys general argue healthcare does not meet the legal definition of interstate commerce, so the congressional mandate that all Americans must purchase health insurance is unconstitutional.

"In the past 15 years the Supreme Court has scaled back Congress when they've tried to inject themselves into purely state matters," Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox said.

Those critical of the lawsuit say the U.S. healthcare system is national in its scale, and rises above state lines.

That's a pretty funny story, in that sad way the sore losers have of not giving up. FishyJay's title is exactly right, this is divisive. For me though, the final line of the article says it all. We've been calling this thing NATIONAL Health Care reform because it "rises above state lines."

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Incredibly Fast Reloading

I saw this incredible video on Xavier Thoughts. I find his site extremely fascinating.

Quick, smooth tactical reloads are impressive, especially when performed running and gunning.

A while back, I showed a series of photos on how to perform a 1911 reload in this post, and I am fairly proficient at getting the job done. My preference for a handgun reload though, is the shotgun I fought myself to. If I am still in need of ammunition with the smoking shotgun in my hands, I hope there will be another shotgun nearby, or a half empty firearm on the floor.
Does that sound a little paranoid to you? It certainly does to me. Where is the line between reasonable precaution which constitute preparedness and over-the-top paranoid delusion? Can planning for every contingency to this degree become a trap for some people which itself diminishes freedom? Or, does it make sense to plan meticulously for the extremely rare event of armed home invasion and the even rarer event of home invasion by a team of commandos?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Pot Smoker Killed by Meteorite

DrugWarRant published a fascinating report which brings together two of our favorite topics, meteorite strikes and marijuana reform.

San Hoyo, California: A coroner’s report released yesterday by police confirmed the presence of marijuana compounds in the system of Jonah Ellis, a 23-year-old man who was killed last Thursday just outside the town limits when struck by a meteorite.

Police Chief Dirk Jackson refused to speculate whether this news would have an impact on the upcoming referendum on the legalization of marijuana in California this November, but noted that, “In the 10 years I’ve been in San Hoyo, 100% of meteorite fatalities have been marijuana-related, demonstrating a clear link. It’s certainly got to make you think.”

Calvina Califano, spokesperson for Citizens Resisting Against Pot, had harsher words to say about the referendum. “If legalization passes,” she said, “you can absolutely count on an increase in meteorite strikes. And we won’t be as lucky the next time. People will be smoking pot outside day-care centers, and when that meteorite strikes, the collateral damage will be measured in mothers sifting through the rubble for the mangled corpses of their infant children. Marijuana: harmless? Let those legalizers tell that to the grieving mothers.”

A representative of the Coalition to Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in California claimed that the meteorite strike was unrelated to marijuana use, but was unable to precisely explain why Jonah Ellis was hit.

Scientists note that meteorites are formed from the debris of asteroids, and that there are literally millions upon millions of asteroids. If marijuana is legalized, it could take many years to exhaust the supply, and some say the damage to society could be permanent.

What Republicans Do published a wonderful article by Alex Howard describing the Republican party.

Republicans are baiting people into believing their lies so much, that they are now sending swastikas and threats in the mail to Democratic politicians, who voted for the Health Care Bill. But in a way, this is good. It will end up backfiring on them. This will show everyone in the country exactly how negative the Republicans really are. If the Right-wingers don't get their way, they threaten bodily harm to those who have voted against them.

But now, our honest politicians have to start using bodyguards, have to wear bullet resistant vests, and do everything to prevent bodily harm, just for standing up for their views.

If "We, the People" of these United States, learn the truth, they will vote Republicans out of office in droves. If you want to be a Republican, you must threaten bodily harm to Democrat politicians. (And you must learn how to walk without tripping over your white sheet!)

Republicans have no ideas how to make this country better, so they find ways to lie to People, and threaten those who disagree with them.

Is it fair to say this is what "Republicans" do? Or is this activity really limited to a fringe group of fanatics? This is the question we keep coming back to. Is the fringe group of offenders tolerated and even encouraged by the main body so as to make the entire movement guilty?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.