Bearing Arms

  • Delaware Governor Calls On Lawmakers To Ban ‘Ghost Guns’
    The term “ghost gun” is designed to terrify the hell out of the ignorant. Used to describe homebuilt firearms that don’t have any paperwork with a serial number on it, they’re scary to people who envision millions of untraceable guns out there in the wild, ready to be used by every manner of evil being. They’re not, but that won’t stop politicians from trying to ban the things. The latest push comes from Delaware. Delaware Gov. John Carney on Thursday called on lawmakers to back a plan to boost education spending for disadvantaged students, a ban on so-called “ghost guns,” and a proposal to raise the age to buy cigarettes to 21 years of age. … But Carney also pledged support for gun control measures, including bans on 3-D printed firearms and weapons without serial numbers that are assembled from parts by the owner. He also thanked Senate President Pro-Tem David McBride (D-Hawks Nest) for pledging to bring a proposed ban on certain semi-automatic weapons dubbed by many lawmakers to be “assault weapons” to the floor for a full debate. “It’s the right thing to do,” he said. Of course, Carney presented no evidence that these kinds of firearms represent any real threat or anything. Most of the guns built by 3D printers are bulky, single-shot firearms that are more of a proof of concept than a viable threat to anyone. The most homebuilt firearm beside those is the so-called assault rifle, which they’re also looking at trying to ban in the state. The problem is that these weapons represent a tiny, tiny fraction of the guns used in criminal activities. While “assault rifles” been used in several high profile mass shootings lately, it still bears remembering that a ban wouldn’t stop mass shootings and the worst school shooting in American history was committed with a couple of handguns. No, what all of this represents is Carney’s fear. The problem is that even if all of this sails through and receives perfect compliance–something I can guarantee will not happen–Carney still won’t know about all the guns in the state. While they do have universal background checks in Delaware, the truth is that plenty of transfers took place before the law went into effect. It also doesn’t account for people moving into the state with firearms they already own. Carney is scared, and he’s letting that fear drive his legislative agenda, which is typical of anti-gun zealots like him. But at the end of the day, there’s no data supporting the idea that any of these measures would make anyone any safer. Instead, it’s just their fear supporting their claim while being nothing more than punishing their citizens for things they haven’t done. The Second Amendment protects a sacred civil liberty. Because of that, the onus is on those who would restrict it to prove that the good would outweigh the bad. They can’t. They can’t because infringement does not and has never made anyone safer. Neither does Carney’s fear. The post Delaware Governor ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Saturday, January 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    18 hours ago
  • Couple Sues Over Second Amendment Infringement For Foster Parents
    I’ve heard horror stories of kids who have to stay with foster parents. Some are absolute nightmare fuel. But I like to believe that those horror stories represent a small minority of the foster families out there. Most, it seems to me, are people who want to open their home up to kids who need something better than the old-style orphanages where dozens of kids are packed under one roof. That said, I get why agencies charged with protecting these kids have rules about what foster parents can and can’t do while there’s a foster child in residence. The problem is when they infringe on people’s civil liberties like in Missouri. A Kansas City couple claims in a federal lawsuit state requirements for foster parents who own guns violate their constitutional rights. Foster parents in Missouri are not prohibited from possessing firearms if they are otherwise legally allowed to do so. But the Missouri Department of Social Services imposes several restrictions on them, The Kansas City Star reported. The rules include storing firearms and ammunition separately, keeping firearms locked in areas inaccessible to children, and keeping firearms in a locked area in any vehicle transporting a foster child. James and Julie Attaway, who have one foster child in their home and plan to have more, argue in their lawsuit the restrictions prevent them from possessing or carrying “loaded functional firearms.” The Second Amendment Foundation is helping the Attaways. David Sigale, an Illinois lawyer representing the couple, told the Southeast Missourian, “It leaves them with no actual ability to exercise their Second Amendment rights.” He’s right. The problem with these rules and regulations is that they look at just one potential issue–namely, the child gaining control of the firearm and hurting or killing themselves–and fail to recognize the other side of the coin. The rules are there to prevent just one tragedy but may enable many others. In particular, by blocking the Attaways’ ability to access a firearm, they may be putting the entire family’s life at risk to home invaders. While the odds of that are low, so are the odds of the child hurting themselves with a firearm. Rules like this are generally the product of bureaucrats who don’t understand the multiple layers involved in owning and using firearms. Preventing accidents with children in the home is important, something I think everyone can agree on. But the only solution isn’t to restrict people’s ability to access their guns in the case of an emergency.  Especially when you essentially ban a concealed carry holder like James Attaway from actually carrying his firearm. After all, if the gun is supposed to be locked up at all times, he can’t carry it. This despite a gun on his hip being just as inaccessible to the child as it would in a safe. I wish the Attaways the best of luck in their lawsuit, and I hope Missouri comes to its senses quickly. There’s no reason for this kind of thing except either ignorance or ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Saturday, January 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    20 hours ago
  • WaPo Writer Thinks He’s Dismantled The ‘Good Guy With A Gun’ Argument. Here’s What He DOESN’T Mention.
    AP Photo/Philip Kamrass Every year the U.S. sees thousands of criminals commit crimes with firearms. At the same time, law-abiding gun owners, rather than abuse their Second Amendment right and cause harm, use theirs to protect themselves, loved ones, and even strangers. But how many times does a “good guy” with a gun stop a “bad guy” with (or without) a gun? In a recent article published in The Washington Post, writer Christopher Ingraham attempts to answer that very question. After quoting National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre’s “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun,” Ingraham argues that people “rarely” use guns in acts of self-defense. “The challenge to that argument is that, data show, guns are rarely used in self-defense — especially relative to the rate at which they’re used in criminal homicides or suicides,” he states. Ingraham bases his claim off of a report on gun violence by the Violence Policy Center, a gun control advocacy group, and 2012 homicide data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Based on the data and his calculations, Ingraham presents what appears to be a troubling find. For every “justifiable homicide” in 2012, which the FBI defines as “the killing of a felon, during the commission of a felony, by a private citizen,” there were 34 criminal homicides. From Ingraham’s article (via The Post): In 2012, there were 8,855 criminal gun homicides in the FBI’s homicide database, but only 258 gun killings by private citizens that were deemed justifiable, which the FBI defines as “the killing of a felon, during the commission of a felony, by a private citizen.” That works out to one justifiable gun death for every 34 unjustifiable gun deaths. Or, look at it this way. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows that in 2012 there were 20,666 suicides by gun. That works out to one self-defense killing for every 78 gun suicides. CDC data show that there were more than twice as many accidental gun fatalities as justifiable killings. … The vast majority of gun owners are responsible citizens, not criminals. But, though some people certainly use guns for self-defense, the data suggest that overall, guns are used far more often for killing than self-defense. As a result, it may be worth thinking twice about arguments for more guns in schools, churches and other public places. But does the data really show what Ingraham claims? That “guns are used far more often for killing than self-defense”? Short answer: no. One of the problems with Ingraham’s analysis is that he narrowly defines self-defense with a firearm as when a gun owner shoots and kills a criminal. By using this narrow definition, Ingraham — either purposefully or accidentally — ignores acts of self-defense which include a criminal being scared off by the presence of a gun (whether it’s fired or not) or when a criminal is injured but does not die. In a U.S. Department of Justice report in May 2013, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) published its National Crime Victimization Survey ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, January 18, 2019By Micah Rate
    1 day ago
  • VA House Panel Smacks Down Gun Control Bills
    Virginia’s Democratic governor just knew he was going to get gun control passed in his state. That was clear from his comments. Of course, politicians usually think their measures are going to pass. Otherwise, why bother proposing most of them, right? Well, Gov. Ralph Northam has got to be disappointed. It seems a GOP-majority subcommittee smacked down each gun control bill brought before it. A Republican-led subcommittee in the Virginia House of Delegates voted down more than a dozen Democratic gun control bills Thursday, including a red-flag proposal endorsed by President Donald Trump’s school safety committee. In a packed hearing room, Republicans on a House Militia, Police and Public Safety subcommittee used their 4-2 majority to methodically defeat the gun bills over the course of more than two hours. For the first time, the panel heard arguments about a bill to create extreme risk protection orders, which would allow authorities to take guns from people whose behavior gives law enforcement reason to believe they may hurt others or themselves. The idea gained bipartisan support after last year’s school shooting in Parkland, Fla., but Thursday’s vote indicates Virginia won’t join the 13 states that have risk protection laws. “I had hoped that this bill would show itself as one that could break the partisan logjam that we seem to be stuck in when it comes to gun safety bills,” said Del. Rip Sullivan, D-Fairfax, the bill’s sponsor. “This is a bill that Republicans all across the country support.” It’s not a gun safety bill. It’s a gun confiscation bill. As it stands, they’re looking at taking guns from a few people, but when the barriers are so low to get an order issued and no penalties for doing so falsely, only a fool would support such measures, which explains why pretty much all Democrats and only a few Republicans back such laws. The truth of the matter is that while red flag laws are popular, that doesn’t make them right. I get the desire to take guns from people who might be about to do something either stupid or evil. I don’t want those people having guns to do those things either. But no one should be comfortable with trampling on civil liberties lightly, and that’s what red flag laws do. They strip citizens of their Second Amendment rights over mere accusations that they might be about to do something or represent some kind of a danger. This subcommittee was right to lower the hammer on these bills. Virginia, like any other state, deserves better than that. Her citizens deserve to live in a place where they won’t have to worry about someone coming to take their guns because some family member is angry over an internet argument and the fact that they wouldn’t roll over and be good little liberal doormats. It will happen. Trust me on that. That alone should be enough reason for every one of ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, January 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • Mark Kelly Considers Challenging McSally For Senate Seat
    Ever since his wife, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), was shot, Mark Kelly has been an anti-gun crusader. He hasn’t been a particularly talented one, mind you. Nor has he been a particularly effective one, from what most anyone can see. Still, he persists with his efforts. However, it looks like the former astronaut is looking to make himself far more effective by challenging Republican Martha McSally for her Arizona Senate seat. Retired astronaut Mark Kelly is taking steps toward a bid against Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) in 2020, identifying potential staffers and strategists and meeting with Democrats around Arizona — though his allies say no final decision has been made. Democratic sources said Kelly, the husband of former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D), has been calling and meeting with top Democratic activists in Arizona since late last year. He has identified a campaign manager, according to two of those sources, and he is working with one of Arizona’s top Democratic strategists as he considers his future. Kelly has met with Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D) and Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), who heads the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, to discuss a possible campaign. “Mark appreciates the encouragement that he’s gotten from folks who are looking for someone to represent us in Washington who will address serious problems like low wage growth, climate change, health care,” said Rodd McLeod, the top Arizona strategist serving as Kelly’s spokesman. “He’s going to make a decision, but he has to go through a process of making sure that he considers what running for Senate would be like for him and his family.” Of course, Kelly has never held public office before, and all he’s known for at this point is his position on a single issue, namely guns. And he wants to run in a rather pro-gun state like Arizona. Now, that’s not to say a win is impossible. Democratic Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema was able to pull out a win in the state despite her history of leaning hard to the left. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that a Democrat could win again. Of course, Sinema was running for an open seat while Kelly would be going against an incumbent. While incumbency isn’t a slam dunk for reelection, it gives one some significant advantages, especially against someone like Kelly who has no legislative history at all. Frankly, Kelly is a long shot. There are others who are considering a run who are more qualified for the seat and have histories voters can look at to determine if they’re a good candidate for them. As it is, all Kelly has going for him is a history of blaming guns for things people do, and I’m not sure that’s going to fly in Arizona. It looks like Kelly is considering something like crash and burn on reentry, kind of like most of his gun control efforts have so far. At least he’ll be used to the disappointment. The post Mark Kelly Considers Challenging McSally For Senate Seat appeared ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, January 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • Durham, NC Officials Call For Gun Control After Slew Of Homicides
    It’s troubling when you’re a city leader when there’s a spike in crime. A single murder, as bad as it is, can be written off easily as an isolated tragedy. But when several homicides happen in a short amount of time, you almost have to start demanding answers. The people who elected you expect it. But all too often, that demand ends up being a call for gun control. So-called leaders look to the easy scapegoat and start calling for a restriction on people’s constitutionally protected rights. Look at what’s transpiring in Durham, North Carolina. Durham officials called on state legislators Thursday to put in place “common-sense gun laws” in the aftermath of a rash of homicides in the first weeks of 2019. Mayor Steve Schewel said it’s important to address the “root causes” of violence. “First of all, and I have to mention this, we have got to have common-sense gun laws in this state,” he said. Newly elected Durham County Sheriff Clarence Birkhead echoed the mayor, saying it’s too easy for young people to access guns. “There are far too many guns in our community,” Birkhead said. “I talk with our leaders in Raleigh about smart gun legislation that will limit the access young people have to guns. I have young people telling me it’s easier to get a gun than it is to get a meal, and that’s just unacceptable.” First, that’s a load of bull. Easier to get a gun than a meal? Last time I checked, you didn’t have to get a background check at Wendy’s. Of course, when you buy your guns off the black market, as most criminals do, then yeah, it’s pretty simple. Of course, there are also places that give you meals for free just because they want to feed the hungry, so I’m still calling BS on that statement. But let’s give Birkhead the benefit of the doubt. Let’s say he’s just engaging in a bit of hyperbole. That still doesn’t acknowledge the fact that they failed to make a case of how new gun control would have prevented any of these murders. Either these are criminals who probably couldn’t buy a gun legally in the first place, or they’re people with no criminal history and wouldn’t be stopped from buying a gun, even with new restrictions. Now, I agree with Mayor Schewel that it would be a good thing to figure out the “root causes” of violence. It’s an excellent idea, and something I’ve been a proponent of for quite some time. The problem is that he follows it up with the familiar and non-sensical refrain of “common-sense gun laws.” I hate to break it to the mayor, but those are contradicting terms. There is no such thing as “common-sense gun laws.” We already restrict who can purchase a firearm legally to keep them out of criminal and insane hands, but guess what? They continue to get them. Further, as noted previously, these criminals don’t go through the regular channels to ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, January 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • VA State Senator Open Carries On Floor, Calls It Her ‘ERA’
    I’ve never understood feminists and their resistance to firearms. For women, who are biologically weaker than men, the most effective way to fend of a larger and stronger predator is to provide an immediate increase in the amount of copper and lead in their body in conjunction with an acute loss of blood. In other words, if they attack you, you shoot them. Feminists tend not to get that, but that doesn’t mean women don’t get that. Virginia State Sen. Amanda Chase clearly does. A female state lawmaker in Virginia openly carried a handgun on the Senate floor this week, calling it a deterrent against potential attackers. State Sen. Amanda Chase, a first-term Republican who is seeking reelection this year, spoke on the Senate floor Tuesday with a .38-caliber revolver openly strapped to her hip, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. … Ms. Chase said she always carries concealed in the Virginia State Capitol but decided to carry the gun openly following an incident Monday in which the police were called on a mob of immigration activists who confronted Republican “It concerned me,” Ms. Chase told The Washington Post about the incident. “I’ve had threats. I’ve had stalkers since I’ve been in the General Assembly. I am going to continue to represent the issues that are important to my constituents, and I’m not going to be intimidated by people who would try to physically harm me.” … “It empowers women,” she added. “I jokingly call it my ERA.” There are, of course, two issues here. One is the growing concern that political confrontations will turn more and more serious until violence happens. It’s one thing when there are protests that turn into riots. Those happen and while they’re a problem, it’s not the same as a mob confronting lawmakers they oppose. Then, the object of their frustration is right there. Instead of lashing out aimlessly, trashing businesses and cars, their anger can be directed on the person they blame for whatever reason. Mobs aren’t known for being reasonable. As a result, I don’t blame Chase for not just going armed but going armed openly. While I’m a supporter of people’s legal right to open carry, I tend to not support it as a tactical decision. I just don’t see any reason to advertise that I’m someone who might be able to intervene. I’d rather they find out the hard way. One exception is when you make political statements, and there are certainly times you want to do that. And, in my opinion, that’s kind of what Chase is doing, only her statement has a practical edge. She’s making it clear to those who could confront her on issues that she’s more than capable of handling them, so they need to keep their hands to themselves. The second issue is the very last quoted line. This is something I wish more women understood. While feminists can scream about teaching men to not rape or how society needs to adjust, the fact of the matter is that there will always be bad actors in society. There ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, January 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • Another Media Outlet Pushing Smart Guns
    Proponents of smart guns don’t listen. Well, they don’t listen to people who oppose smart guns, anyway. Granted, I already knew this, but every so often something comes up that reminds me of how little smart-gun proponents listen to opponents on the topic. You know, things like this. People on both sides of the gun control debate can at least agree safer guns are a good thing — can’t they? After all, what’s wrong with a gun that sets off an alarm and sends a text if it’s moved? Or needs the user’s thumbprint to operate? Or only fires when a user wearing a tiny electronic ID tag picks it up? Plenty, according to some users, especially police officers, who say they need speedy, reliable access above anything else. Some also believe any government attempts to require smart-gun technology infringes on gun rights. Still, it’s the hope of Don’t Stand Idly By — a movement promoting safer weapons that might reduce gun thefts, suicides and accidents that claim the lives of tens of thousands of Americans every year — that law enforcement can back the same cause without taking sides. “Our campaign has nothing to do with mandates,” the group’s Erin Stilp said.”It’s about products that are going to make it safer for all of us,” both for those who won’t live in a house with a gun and those who won’t live in a house without one. The problem is, smart guns don’t make anything safer for all of us. Let’s look at a few of these suggestions, and I’ll show you what’s wrong with them. Ehren Achee of Ignis Kinetics in Texas talked about his work on a system that would equip guns with a device that would detect a tiny RFID worn by the authorized user and only then become usable. RFID stands for radio frequency identification and is similar to that used on ID cards employees used to enter secure work areas. Great. So, what happens when I take it off to get in the shower, but then something happens where I need my gun? Based on this technology, I’ll have to grab not just my gun but also an RFID chip to slip on before I go out to save my family’s life. What happens when I forget to put it on that morning, then need my weapon to save my life but can’t because I left one thing at home? Timothy Oh demonstrated Vara’s Reach, a wall-mounted handgun lock that leaves the grip exposed and unlocks as soon as the authorized user reaches for it and the device reads her thumbprint. “As fast as a holster, as secure as a safe,” Oh said. Until it loses power, that is. Or there’s something on the reader that makes it difficult for it to pick up my thumbprint. Or my thumb isn’t perfectly placed on the reader. Shall I go on? Bob Allen of Safety First Arms showed off a PIN-activated lock and alarm built into a replacement grip for the popular ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • California Looking At New Slate Of Gun Restrictions
    We’ve long known that the endgame for the gun control movement is complete disarmament of the citizenry. Gun grabbers may not ever be able to achieve that, but they know that they’ll never even get close if they try to do it in one fell swoop. Instead, these gun control activists have to ratchet up their rhetoric and proposals a notch or two at a time, slowly. California is a lot further down the line than most. More importantly, perhaps, the state’s looking to go down it even more. California’s legislative tiller has rolled its way through the new year, allowing for several new gun control laws to sprout from the seeds of last year’s bills. So far, the new laws have been subject to praise from UC Santa Barbara, Isla Vista, California and national leaders. The new laws include: Senate Bill 1100: Raises the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21 Assembly Bill 1968: Imposes lifetime gun-ownership bans on individuals considered to be “dangerous gun owners” Senate Bill 1346: Bans bump-stock devices Assembly Bill 3129: Imposes lifetime gun-ownership bans on individuals convicted of domestic violence Assembly Bill 2103: Requires that individuals applying for concealed-carry weapons permits undergo a minimum of eight hours of training Senate Bill 1200: Magazines and ammunition can now be temporarily confiscated as part of a gun violence restraining order I.V. and UCSB community leaders have oftentimes held vigils after mass shootings occur in the United States and around the world, calling for stricter gun control laws in both California and the country to prevent future mass shootings. To some extent, their calls seem to have been heard. Hannah-Beth Jackson, Santa Barbara’s state senator representing California’s 19th district and author of SB 1346, optimistically expressed approval for the new gun control laws. While the article quoted praises pretty much all gun control laws, most of these aren’t anything new. They’re retreads of federal laws or policies we already see elsewhere. That’s not to say they’re good, mind you, but they’re already in place elsewhere. But AB 1968 is troubling. Here’s the part of the bill that bothers me. Existing law makes it a crime for a person who has been taken into custody, assessed, and admitted to a designated facility because he or she is a danger to himself, herself, or others, as a result of a mental health disorder to own a firearm for a period of 5 years after the person is released from the facility. Existing law allows a person who is prohibited from owning a firearm pursuant to these provisions to petition the court for a hearing in which the district attorney is required to show by a preponderance of the evidence that the person would not be likely to use firearms in a safe and lawful manner. If the people do not meet this burden, existing law requires the court to order that the person not be subject to this prohibition on the possession of firearms. This bill would prohibit a person who has been ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • Op-ed Examines How Gun Control In Venezuela Led To Tyranny
    Venezuela was once the jewel of South America. It’s an oil-rich nation with a long growing season and abundant natural resources. Plus, it’s a beautiful place that would make a wonderful tourist destination…if it wasn’t a socialist hellhole where people are eating zoo animals to survive. Now, an op-ed is noting that gun control is a tool of the tyrannical Maduro government in the country. Is Venezuela paying the price for adopting gun control? The shocking nature of Venezuela’s economic collapse has been covered ad nauseam. However, one aspect of the Venezuelan crisis that does not receive much coverage is the country’s gun control regime. Fox News recently published an excellent article highlighting Venezuelan citizens’ regret over the gun control policies the Venezuelan government has implemented since 2012. Naturally, this regret is warranted. The Venezuelan government is among the most tyrannical in the world, with a proven track record of violating basic civil liberties such as free speech, debasing its national currency, confiscating private property, and creating economic controls that destroy the country’s productivity. Elections have proven to be useless, as they’ve been mired with corruption and charges of government tampering. For many, taking up arms is the only option left for the country to shake off its tyrannical government. However, the Venezuelan government has done well to prevent an uprising by passing draconian gun control which will be detailed below. … Venezuelans are now defenseless against a government that runs roughshod over their civil liberties, while also destroying their economic livelihood. As if it weren’t enough, everyday Venezuelans must put up with rampant crime and the constant threat of colectivos, Venezuela’s infamous pro-government paramilitary units. Although gun control in and of itself does not automatically lead to tyranny, historical events remind us that well-intentioned interventions from previous governments can be used by the next round of political operatives for nefarious purposes. Firearms bans, confiscation, and registration give the state a virtual monopoly on violence, thus turning its citizens into defenseless subjects. When the rubber meets the road, a disarmed populace has no chance against a well-armed Leviathan. It’s an interesting piece, one well worth reading. Of course, there aren’t many arguments there that Second Amendment advocates won’t recognize. That’s because regardless of the nation, the reason to protect our right to keep and bear arms remains the same. It is the only way to preserve our liberties. Meanwhile, in France, what started as a flippant comment about rural folks needing to walk more is turning ugly. Protestors have rioted ever since President Macron made his announcement of a new carbon tax and French police have been unable to quell the unrest. Keep in mind that while these are rioters, not mere demonstrators, they’re still outraged over a government that they feel is out of touch with them. How is Macron reacting? Not particularly well. Last week, when we looked at the French government’s plans to “crack down” on the yellow vest protesters and rioters, it sounded like they were just passing new laws to allow for jail time for unauthorized marches. While a bit on ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Illinois Governor Signs Bill Requiring More Licensing For Gun Stores
    While Illinois Democrats may pretend they’re for the little guy, they have no problem at all trying to crush small businesses. I’m sure they’ll disagree with this characterization, but it’s true. Illinois Democrats see no problem passing regulations that will disproportionately impact small businesses while empowering their larger competitors. If you want them to openly brag about doing it, you need to make it so that the businesses they’re crushing are gun stores. You see, Illinois lawmakers think gun stores should have to get additional licensing on top of the federal requirements to operate. A license already vetoed once. Well, they’re at it again, and this time it’s become law. Gov. J.B. Pritzker plans to sign a bill Thursday that would give the state more oversight over Illinois gun dealers, after Democrats kept the paperwork off former Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner’s desk in order to avoid a veto during his administration’s final days, according to a state lawmaker. The proposal would require firearm stores to get state licenses, a move that supporters contend could reduce gun violence because federal regulators are stretched too thin to adequately handle all the shops operating in Illinois. Pritzker is set to sign it into law at a Chicago school Thursday morning, according to Democratic state Sen. Don Harmon of Oak Park, the proposal’s sponsor. Lawmakers approved it last year in the wake of the killing of Chicago police Cmdr. Paul Bauer and the high school shooting in Parkland, Fla. “This is a common-sense piece of legislation, so when I introduced it a decade and a half ago, I thought we would be celebrating this day much sooner,” Harmon said. “But important causes are worth fighting for, and I am proud to stand with the countless advocates and supporters who have stuck with us for all these years.” A Pritzker spokeswoman declined to comment. Rauner vetoed a similar proposal in the spring, calling it “duplicative” because the federal government already licenses firearms retailers. He said adding another layer of oversight would be costly for businesses and “do little to improve public safety.” And, for the record, there’s no problem with the federal licensing process. No, what Illinois wanted to do is create more hurdles for these small businessmen and women to jump through to operate their stores. They seem to think they can stop, or at least minimize, crime by going after the lawful gun stores in their state. Too bad for them that we already know how criminals get their guns. This isn’t about combating crime or anything else. No, it’s about punishing these stores for having the nerve to exist in a state that doesn’t want them there. Nevermind that the only part of Illinois that doesn’t is Chicago, a warzone that persists in being one despite myriad gun control laws already on the books. Why it’s like those laws are useless, isn’t it? But don’t worry. Here comes the state government with yet another law that won’t do anything except hurt law-abiding citizens. The headline and story have been updated. The post Illinois Governor ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Gun Owners Of America To Take NFA Before Supreme Court
    The National Firearms Act is an insidious piece of legislation that I desperately hope to one day see relegated to the proverbial trash heap of history. The idea that we, law-abiding citizens who have done nothing wrong, should have to beg for permission to arm ourselves with certain firearms is practically begging to be shot down. I just don’t know if I’ll see it in my lifetime. However, it does appear that Gun Owners of America is doing its part to make my dream a reality. In a press release sent out on Wednesday, GOA announced it was taking an anti-NFA case to the highest court in the land. GOA/GOF Fund Challenge to NFA in U.S. Supreme Court “The arguments presented by GOA and GOF cut to the heart of the National Firearms Act.” – GOA’s Erich Pratt Springfield, VA – Gun Owners of America (GOA) and its legal arm, Gun Owners Foundation (GOF), this week continued their defense of Jeremy Kettler, who is a disabled combat veteran.  GOA/GOF submitted a petition for writ of certiorari before the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of Kettler, after he was convicted for violating the National Firearms Act (NFA). The Obama Justice Department brought criminal felony charges against Kettler for illegally possessing an unregistered firearm suppressor, despite the fact that Kansas’ “Second Amendment Protection Act” protected his actions. GOA and GOF have stood with Kettler, both in his appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, and now in the U.S. Supreme Court. GOA’s executive director, Erich Pratt, stated, “It’s time to challenge the NFA, which has long been a leviathan of unconstitutional gun control. GOA/GOF is not only proud to defend one of our nation’s disabled veterans, but also to potentially deal a significant blow to the NFA.” GOA/GOF arguments challenge the legitimacy of the NFA as a so-called “tax,” challenge the absurd notion that the Second Amendment only applies to “bearable arms,” and raise concerns that the NFA is a tax on a constitutionally-protected right. “GOA/GOF have stood for the right to own ‘bearable arms’ of all types, and firearms accessories as well — including suppressors and machineguns,” Pratt stated. “The arguments presented by GOA/GOF cut to the heart of the National Firearms Act.” GOA/GOF urge the Supreme Court to take up this case and put an end to lower courts ignoring the Heller and McDonald decisions. “Jeremy Kettler’s petition presents solid, well-argued questions important to all gun owners, and we hope the Court will grant certiorari to decide them,” Pratt concluded. For more information, please see here. And to read GOA’s petition for certiorari see here. Erich Pratt, or another GOA spokesman, is available for interviews. Gun Owners of America is a nonprofit lobbying organization dedicated to protecting the right to keep and bear arms without compromise. GOA represents over 1.5 million members and activists. For more information, visit GOA’s Newsroom. I wish GOA luck. However, I’m skeptical. Not because the organization doesn’t have a case, mind you. The Supreme Court’s previous stance supporting ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • DOJ Confirms It: Crimes Guns Come From Black Market
    While anti-gunners are constantly trying to make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to purchase a firearm, they argue that their efforts are aimed at stopping criminals from getting guns. No matter how many times we point out that bad guys are going to still get guns, they persist. I don’t know. Maybe they don’t believe us. Maybe they’re just completely convinced that we’re wrong and that bad guys are walking into the neighborhood gun store and walking out with a firearm that they can’t accept what we’re saying is true. Not believing us outright is fine. Skepticism is generally pretty healthy, in my opinion, so that’s fine. But maybe they’ll believe the Department of Justice if they won’t believe us. Here are some bite-sized nuggets from the report by Beth Baumann: When anti-gunners try to tell you criminals get their firearms from a gun show or retail store, show them this: pic.twitter.com/QVyCgnJcUn — Beth Baumann (@eb454) January 16, 2019 As Beth pointed out over at our sister-site Townhall, these numbers pop up just days after Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduces yet another assault weapon ban. Note that the vast majority of firearms used aren’t long guns at all, but are handguns. Further, the tiny percentage that represents long guns also include firearms that would be exempt from the new assault weapon ban, including various shotguns. The number of criminals who used a rifle to commit crimes is less than 2%: pic.twitter.com/95FRhWjmvh — Beth Baumann (@eb454) January 16, 2019 Now, here’s the really interesting part from the report: Among prisoners who possessed a frearm when they committed the offense for which they were imprisoned and who reported the source from which they obtained it, the most common source (43%) was of-the-street or the underground market (table 5). Another 7% of state and 5% of federal prisoners stole the frearm, and 7% of state and 8% of federal prisoners reported that they obtained the frearm at the location of the crime. Courtesy of the Department of JusticeHere we can see how criminals actually get their firearms broken down. While 10 percent buying at gun stores seems high, let’s also remember that not everyone starts out life as a criminal. They’re given a fair shake to start with, and that means enjoying their full rights as a citizen. Additionally, the report doesn’t state if they used their own identities to try and purchase a firearm. If they used fraudulent means to obtain the gun from a law-abiding dealer, I’d challenge gun grabbers to tell us what gun stores are supposed to do about it when they have no reason to believe it’s fraudulent in the first place. Let’s also note that only a tiny fraction of the total guns could be remotely stopped by something like universal background checks. Honestly, though, the actual impact would be even smaller. Many of those guns sold to these criminals were sold by people who knew the individual’s background and sold them the gun anyway. In other ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Bill Would Require Lawmakers To Pass Test Before Pushing Gun Laws
    One of the biggest problems I routinely see are the people pushing for gun laws that don’t actually understand anything about firearms. From lawmakers who think a barrel shroud is “the shoulder thingy that goes up” to those who think you can shoot down a jumbo jet with an AR-15, there’s an awful lot of dumb that flies from the mouths of gun control advocates. And, since we live in a country that values free speech, there’s not much we can do about it. Nor should there be, if I’m honest. But what happens when those who actually make the laws don’t understand anything about firearms? Well, you get idiotic laws, that’s what. Now, a Washington state lawmaker wants to change that. Well, probably. State Sen. Phil Fortunato, R-Auburn, has introduced legislation in advance of the 2019 legislative session that would require lawmakers who draft gun legislation to be trained and pass a test. “We have legislators drafting bills who have no idea how firearms work or any sense of firearm nomenclature,” Fortunato said. “When decision makers want to restrict someone’s constitutional rights, they shouldn’t go off half-cocked.” (Break to applaud the well-placed pun.) Fortunato’s bill would require legislators who want to draft legislation to pass the state’s criminal justice firearms training for each firearm they wish to regulate. In addition to classroom and live-fire requirements, legislators would also need to pass range safety officer training, and be able to pass a knowledge test for calibers and gauges of firearms. Fortunato points to some of the idiocy we’ve heard from lawmakers throughout the country who have said some pretty assinine things about the firearms they want to regulate. Now, realistically, Fortunato’s bill isn’t really going to go much of anywhere. Lawmakers don’t like limits on their ability pass laws, even if they’re stupid laws. It’s a symbolic bill more than anything. But that doesn’t make it less glorious. What I hope, though, is that we do get some actual debate on this. After all, I’d love to hear opponents wax poetically about how there shouldn’t be training required to exercise their constitutional duties…only to have the fact that we’re talking about a constitutional right they’re constantly wanting to regulate. There will be those who will look at Fortunato’s bill and be outraged, of course. They’ll be furious that anyone would try to make a mockery of the legislative process. Of course, I’ve looked at all the nonsense in I-1639, so I could easily counter that argument by pointing out the legislative process already is a mockery. Especially in Washington state. Now, I’d love to be wrong and see this pass. It would take a miracle, but it would be awesome to watch it happen. I’d also love to see this measure taken up in other states. The idea that anti-gun lawmakers would have to actually learn something about the topic they’re wanting to regulate so heavily, especially since I’m pretty sure some would wet their pants in the process. Hat tip: The ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, January 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Actor Calls Out Partisan Divide On Guns, But He’s Wrong
    Jamie Foxx is a tremendous actor. I’ve loved his work for ages now, long before the bulk of his talent was recognized by most of Hollywood. However, he’s an actor. His job is to pretend to be other people in front of a camera. Despite that, people, and reporters in particular, always want to know what he and his colleagues think about political issues that have nothing to do with the film and television industries. And they’ll answer. Foxx, for example, opened up about his thinking on gun control. Actor Jamie Foxx is urging politicians to table vitriol toward opposing political parties when it comes to gun violence and to come together in the face of tragedy as was seen in the deadly wildfires in California in late 2018. “You wish that everyone would have cooler heads and just erase the lines in the sand when it comes to politics, and just really get into a room and try to figure out how can we live in our society, protect our rights and protect ourselves and not be so overly ambitious or overly, ‘It’s about our side versus your side,’ Foxx told reporters Sunday at the California Strong Celebrity Softball game at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif. The “Beat Shazam” host addressed the topic of gun violence and last year’s Borderline Bar & Grill shooting in nearby Thousand Oaks before taking the field. He urged policymakers to “adjust” to the times. “It doesn’t have to be an argument. It doesn’t even have to get as high as the way I’m speaking right now, but that really troubles you. To live in the fourth safest city in the world and to watch things like that happen — and anywhere it happens,” he said. “This is the one time I can say in our history that nobody on either side of the political whatever, has taken a step towards saying, ‘Hey, we’re smart enough — how do we prevent these things from happening?’” It’s an easy sentiment to have. But the problem is that the sentiment almost always boils down to “shut up and do what I want.” This sentiment isn’t just a Democrat thing. Republicans can be just as guilty. Calling for bipartisanship is easy, but no one wants to alienate their base to do so, and for a good reason. That voter base is who elected them. Furthermore, on a topic like guns, there’s not really any way to compromise. One side wants to infringe on our right to keep and bear arms while the other wants to protect that right. The party that wants to take away our rights also doesn’t want to listen to any other ideas about how to stop mass shootings. It’s either guns or nothing with them. So, we give them nothing. Honestly, I’m OK with that. It’s not that I’m not heartbroken every time another mass shooting happens. I am. But I also recognize that these are still rare occurrences and while they’re high-profile, they’re not nearly as prevalent as some make them out to be. They’re not ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Washington Post Misses Fact About Red Flag Laws
    One doesn’t expect the Washington Post to present unbiased reporting. That’s not its way. Not these days, at least. That’s why I shouldn’t be surprised it’s fully supportive of red flag laws. While singing the praised of Maryland’s law, however, it missed something. Maryland courts have seized guns from 148 people in the three months since the state enacted a law designed to take weapons from people who are danger to themselves or others. Four of the gun owners posed “significant threats” to schools, an official told state lawmakers Tuesday. Montgomery County Sheriff Darren M. Popkin (D), who has helped train police officers across the state about the “red-flag” law, said he could not provide details about the gun seizures — including those that could have led to school shootings — because of a confidentiality rule. But, Popkin told the House Judiciary Committee, “these orders . . . are saving lives.” Maryland is one of at least nine states, including California, Connecticut and Delaware, that allow a relative, spouse, legal guardian or roommate to seek a court order to keep a person from possessing a gun. The Washington Post failed to mention the one death attributed to Maryland’s red flag law. Gary J. Willis, a 60-year-old gun owner, answered a knock on his door at 5:17 in the morning. Like most of us, he decided to answer the door armed, suspicious of why anyone would come calling at such an ungodly hour. It was police, who came to take away Willis’ guns in accordance with a red flag law. A struggle followed, and Willis was shot and killed by police. That didn’t show up in the Washington Post‘s article. It ignored that. It also ignored some reports that claim the protective order was taken out against Willis by a family member after an argument as a means of punishing Willis for his political opinions. The fact that there has been no official word about what the order entailed and why it was taken out isn’t helping the speculation in the least. And that’s part of the problem. So many of these laws are written in such a way that they can be used as a means of punishment. Further, while Maryland is touting it stopped all of these people, it’s also impossible to know how many of those people could have been stopped without the red flag laws. After all, planning a mass shooting is illegal. Could these “significant threats” have been stopped without red flag laws? Of course they could. They could have been stopped and the planners arrested, all while not infringing on other people’s Second Amendment rights. But that wouldn’t advance the anti-gun notion that red flag laws are somehow a net good for society. They’re nothing of the sort. They’re a direct infringement of our rights, both people’s Second Amendment rights, and their due process rights. The post Washington Post Misses Fact About Red Flag Laws appeared first on Bearing Arms. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • NRA Calls Out Red Flag Proposal Over Lack Of Due Process Protections
    North Dakota isn’t a state you think of when you think “gun control” by any stretch of the imagination. While it’s not immune to progressive and anti-gun voices, it’s not a state where that type of thinking would get much traction. At least, not in most people’s minds, anyway. Yet red flag laws are insidious. They look and sound like an option to temporarily disarm people who might be a danger and not have an impact on other people in the long term. There are problems with that, though. Those are problems that the National Rifle Association (NRA) brought up regarding a proposal for a red flag law in North Dakota. “Nobody wants dangerous people to have access to firearms which is why the NRA supports risk protection orders that respects the due process of rights and ensures those found mentally ill receive the care they need. Most of the red flag laws passed last year, unfortunately, do none of that,” according to National Rifle Association’s Catherine Mortensen. “Not only do they fail to provide any sort of mental health treatment but they allow the state to deny law-abiding gun owners their due process of rights. If the state can deny due process to these law-abiding residents then what’s to stop them from denying any right to any group of people?” Mortensen brings up an excellent point. The truth of the matter is that even if the red flag laws are a temporary measure, it’s still trampling on people’s rights. As a nation, we do that all the time, but generally only after they’ve been given due process. There’s a process in place. But guns are generally treated differently. Guns scare people, so they tend to be relegated to second-class status. While anti-gun lawmakers don’t care about that, they probably would if due process was ignored in any number of other issues. Or, at least, they would pretend to care. They should. Though they like to claim there are also limits on rights other than the right to keep and bear arms, ignoring due process in one instance can be used to justify ignoring due process in another. That should terrify everyone. Yet it won’t. That’s because the people who claim to care about people and their rights, espousing ideas like “equality” and “justice” without really understanding what those words mean, will continue using any justification they can to run all over our constitutionally protected rights. They want their own preserved but screw the rest of us. Red flag laws need due process protections. If they’re going to exist, they need them in place to minimize good people from being disarmed by well-intentioned loved ones, but also from such laws being used to punish people who may espouse unpopular opinions. Otherwise, red flag laws become nothing more than a perfectly legal swatting technique. What the NRA is demanding is far more reasonable than opponents want to grant, but they’ll oppose it for one reason above all. They’ll oppose it because the NRA supports ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Boston Mayor Wants To Force Doctors To Ask About Guns
    I’ve been pretty down on the American Medical Association and anti-gun doctors for a while. Honestly, it’s taken a concerted effort on my part to remember that not all doctors support this kind of nonsense. After all, the anti-gun doctors get the headlines while groups like Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership barely get mentioned. I respect doctors. I count several as friends and who do I go see if I feel bad? That’s right, a doctor. Doctors are a vital part of our society. Now, the mayor of Boston wants to force them to ask whether or not you have a gun in your home. A glimpse of your upcoming doctor visit: As you grimace uncomfortably during the prostate exam, your doctor casually asks, “Oh, by the way — do you own a gun? How many? Is there one in your house?” Startled, you jump (big mistake) and say, “Why are you asking me that?” “Oh, I have to,” the doctor says as she takes one last pass over your prostate. “It’s mandated by law.” That, my friends, is the future Mayor Marty Walsh envisions, not just for Boston, but for the entire state of Massachusetts. Mayor Walsh’s legislative agenda for the city includes a bill that would require medical professionals to ask patients about guns in the home, and bring up the topics of gun safety. Not “suggest” doctors do it, or “allow” it. Require it. … One Massachusetts official who’s all for doctors grilling their patients over guns is Attorney General Maura Healey. In 2016, she launched a partnership with the Massachusetts Medical Society to encourage doctors to do just that. However, even Healey is unwilling to support Mayor Marty’s mandate thuggery. “The AG believes medical providers should have the tools and training to ask such questions, when appropriate,” was as far as her spokesperson was willing to go. Another element that’s entirely missing from this conversation is the issue of free speech — or in this case, compelled speech. There are plenty of doctors who have no interest in talking about gun ownership with their patients or see no need to. What about their free-speech rights? Columnist Michael Graham goes on to remind folks that when Florida passed a bill that forbade doctors from talking to their patients about guns, the Boston Globe jumped up and down, screaming about the physicians free speech rights. Free speech is a double-edged sword. If I’m free to say things, then I’m also free not to say things. Granted, the latter is a right my wife probably wished I’d exercise a lot more often, but that’s beside the point. Compelling a physician to ask about a firearm, particularly when there’s no legitimate reason to do so, is compelled speech. That’s a violation of the doctor’s freedom of speech. Now, couple that with the fact that whether or not I have a firearm is irrelevant in the majority of cases for why one might see a doctor, and you understand why this is such a head-scratcher. I mean, ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Brazilian President Loosens Restrictions On Firearm Ownership
    Guns save lives. We’ve said that over and over again. Here at Bearing Arms, we have a whole category devoted to just that topic. Numerous people in the United States are alive today because they had a constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. While anti-gun zealots would seek to undermine this right, making it so countless people would die for lack of a firearm, all while pretending to make us safer, another country is going in a different direction. One country is making guns more accessible as a way to try and reduce violent crime. Brazil‘s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro decreed today the easing of national gun laws as part of his law-and-order agenda, despite fears it could aggravate already staggering violent crime. The executive order, signed in a live television broadcast, allows ‘good citizens’ to more easily own firearms, said Bolsonaro. ‘To guarantee the legitimate right of defence, as president I am using this weapon,’ he said, indicating the pen he then used to sign the decree. Brazil recorded nearly 64,000 homicides in 2017, making it one of the most dangerous countries in the world outside of a war zone. According to a survey published last month by the Datafolha polling firm, 61 percent of Brazilians are opposed to generalised gun ownership. … His decree makes it much easier for adults with no criminal record to buy up to four guns and keep them at home. So, it’s not exactly the Second Amendment we’re talking about here, but it’s a start for the violent nation. Let’s face facts. Brazil has a population roughly two-thirds as large as the United States, yet it has more than three times the number of murders. Clearly, gun control isn’t working. There are those who fear that Bolsonaro’s proclamation will worsen the situation. That’s not too surprising. Brazil’s a country where the free ownership of firearms isn’t an everyday thing, so many will look at this with some concern. However, it would also behoove people to remember that the bad guys are killing plenty of Brazilians already. They didn’t need liberalized gun laws to create atrocities. But guns in the hands of law-abiding Brazilians can change the very nature of things in the South American nation. Now, criminals will have to start wondering if their next target is armed. Once they start seeing some of their fellow thugs dead in a gutter because they tangled with an armed, law-abiding individual, they’ll start to rethink their life choices. Or they’ll keep doing it and end up dead themselves. While people in Brazil are concerned, I’d like to invite them to remember that with the current laws on the books, crime has skyrocketed and become a major problem. It’s enough that it’s impacting the nation’s economy. It’s highly unlikely that good guys with guns could possibly make the situation any worse, so why not give it a try? Go and arm yourselves, good Brazilians, and be ready to defend yourself from attacks. Once ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • DA Warns Pittsburgh City Council That They Can’t Make Gun Laws
    Pennsylvania has a preemption law on the books. That means individual communities can’t pass gun control laws. As a result, the state has a unified framework of gun regulations so that those traveling within it know them wherever they go. It keeps people from being arrested for complying with the rules in 99 percent of the state, but crossing the wrong line somewhere and now suddenly being criminals. That hasn’t stopped the Pittsburgh City Council from wanting to pass gun laws in the wake of the Tree of Life Synagogue shooting, though. Now, even the district attorney is warning the council that it can’t pass these laws. Allegheny County’s top law enforcer is advising the City of Pittsburgh to put a halt to its gun-control efforts, but some city council members are not backing down. District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr. issued a letter Jan. 9 to Councilman Corey O’Connor stating that city council does not have the authority to pass proposed gun legislation. Mr. Zappala’s office publicly shared the letter Tuesday on social media. “As the District Attorney of Allegheny County for the past 20 years, I understand the efforts to curtail gun violence and limit the accessibility to assault weapons, ammunition, and gun accessories capable of causing widespread injury, destruction, and death,” Mr. Zappala wrote. “I am also aware of the city’s effort previously under Mayor [Luke] Ravenstahl which was decided against the city in 2010. While I certainly see the desire for such type of legislation at the state and federal levels, I believe that city council does not have the authority to pass such legislation. “I am also certain that you realize that if such legislation passes, there is sure to be a resident of Allegheny County who seeks to file a private criminal complaint alleging a violation of §6120,” the letter reads, referring to the state statute that prohibits municipal regulation of firearms. Mr. Zappala wrote that he is not aware of the opinion of the city’s Law Department, but that he is sure that the department has found the bills “to be unconstitutional.” “The city is not sharing its legal strategies on these bills with anyone outside city government, and that includes the Allegheny County District Attorney,” said Timothy McNulty, Mayor Bill Peduto’s spokesman. Zappala is right, of course. The moment this passes, someone is going to file a lawsuit. I fully suspect a number of residents of the city have already spoken with various gun rights groups and are preparing their legal strategies right now. I won’t be surprised if the lawsuits are already written. The fact that Peduto and company are pushing forward despite the law, though, is telling. It’s almost like they recognize that laws don’t stop people from doing things in the first place, kind of like how this proposal won’t do anything except stop people who are inclined to follow the rules. You know, people not like Peduto and company. He and his cohorts are pushing through despite state law and are ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Washington Lt. Governor Skips Speech Over Gun Fears
    Growing up, one of the places I most wanted to live was the Pacific Northwest. The lush, green forests and the mountains all called to me. It looked like paradise, an earthly manifestation of what Eden must have looked like. Today, I can’t help but feel sorrow for the political climate in that area. It’s not just I-1639 or Oregon’s new gun control bill that’s bothering me, either. It’s that they get politicians like this guy. Washington state’s lieutenant governor says he won’t preside at Gov. Jay Inslee’s State of the State speech because he’s concerned people might bring concealed weapons into the joint session of the Legislature. The Daily Herald newspaper of Everett reported that Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib said no threats had been made, but he’s concerned because the state House of Representatives, where the speech will take place, does not have a policy banning concealed weapons. In other words, there’s no specific threat against him. There’s not some maniac out there saying he’s going to kill Habib the moment he steps foot in the chamber. There’s no security personnel demanding he skip the event out of concerns for his safety. No, this is a political stunt designed to use fearmongering to try and manipulate people into adopting a position he happens to agree with. This is pathetic. The truth is, people lawfully concealing weapons are not now and have never been a threat to their fellow law-abiding citizens. Frankly, as guns are allowed in the building, a rule change would accomplish nothing. All it would be are words on a paper followed only by those inclined to follow the rules in the first place. If someone was interested in harming Habib, they would. The truth of the matter is that Habib isn’t really concerned about that. Instead, he’s grandstanding. He’s trying to undermine the idea of concealed carry, to plant seeds of doubt in Washingtonians’ minds about the safety of armed citizens. Nevermind that those same armed citizens have saved countless lives in the state. Nevermind that those same armed citizens would risk their lives for Habib, despite his politics. What it does, though, is prove that Habib is nothing but a coward. He’s terrified, too scared to carry out his duties, all because someone might be carrying a gun. Not someone who made a threat against him, either. Just that someone with a gun on their person might exist in a time and place where they would be in somewhat close proximity to his own person. I hate to tell him this, but there are guns all around him on a daily basis. He doesn’t know where they are and it’s not a threat to him then, so why is it now? It’s because now, he can capitalize on his pants-wetting cowardice to try and work against the rights of ordinary Americans to keep and bear arms, particularly in the House but in the state as a whole as well. Honestly, this is so pathetic I’m really surprised no ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Wednesday, January 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Band ‘The Killers’ Takes On Gun Control In New Song
    Entertainers tend to lean toward the liberal side. I know. I just announced the equivalent of water is wet and fire is hot. I’m not exactly breaking news right about now. I’ll grant that. But it bears repeating. Mostly, it bears repeating because entertainers can’t seem to shut up about being liberal. The latest example is the group The Killers and their take on gun control in a new song. The Killers take a political stand on “Land of the Free,” a blistering new single from the famed Las Vegas rock outfit. A soulful piano ballad channeling Springsteenian 1980s power rock, Killers frontman Brandon Flowers tackles President Donald Trump’s border wall, mass incarceration and gun violence by anchoring each stance with singing “…in the land of the free.” Backed by a group of gospel-inspired singers, Flowers offers: “So how many daughters, tell me how many sons/Do we have to have to put in the ground before we just break down and face it/We got a problem with guns/In the land of the free.” It sure as hell looks like someone doesn’t understand what “land of the free” means. Land of the free means we’re free to make our own choices, and that includes being able to defend our own lives. Everyone on the Left wants to look at the death toll, and I get it. They see the number of gun-related fatalities and think, “How can we let this go on?” What they’re not looking at are the number of lives saved by guns. Even by the most conservative, anti-gun estimates, more than 2.5 times more people protect themselves with firearms than lose their lives to them.  But the CDC found it was much, much higher. Try 2.4 million people each year protect themselves with a gun, compared to just under 40,000 losing their lives to them. Let’s also not forget that two-thirds of those are people who take their own life. That’s right, they’re not homicides, but suicides. In other words, they’re people who are likely to seek out other ways to kill themselves if they didn’t have a firearm. The land of the free is the one place on Earth where we can defend our lives against those who would hurt our families or us. That means guns in the hands of citizens. Yes, mass shootings are tragic. No one is disputing that. What we are disputing is the idea that because some musician gets all weepy-eyed over it, we need to change our laws and give up our God-given freedom so we can live in their version of the “land of the free” that isn’t particularly free. I’m not going to say that musicians shouldn’t include politics in their music. Plenty of artists have done it through the years, and some of that music is pretty good. But honestly? It never accomplished a damn thing before and it won’t now. Personally, I’m thankful for that. I’d much rather have the ability to protect myself than listen to a musician who ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Traveler Manages To Get Firearm Past Airport Security
    Parts of the government are shut down. While there’s much to enjoy about that, there are people who are having to work while not getting paid, which tends to lead to some not wanting to come into work at all. I’ve got a friend in this boat, and her job isn’t something open in the private sector, so she’s stuck. The Transporation Security Administration (TSA) has a lot of people in that boat, as well. Some aren’t coming in since they’re not getting paid, and I don’t know that I can blame them. I wouldn’t be inclined to go to work either. On Monday, though, news broke of a man who got a firearm past security during this shutdown, leading to all kinds of questions about airport security. As concerns about the possible impacts of the government shutdown on airport screening grow, a passenger got a gun through the country’s busiest airport and onto an international flight in his carry-on bag, according to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). The passenger was traveling through the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport earlier this month and boarded a Delta flight to Japan, which has strict gun control laws. “TSA has determined standard procedures were not followed and a passenger did in fact pass through a standard screening TSA checkpoint with a firearm at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport on January 2. TSA will hold those responsible appropriately accountable,” the agency said in a statement. The incident occurred 12 days into the shutdown. Here’s the thing. My understanding is that at that point, no one had missed a paycheck. People weren’t calling in or quitting because they weren’t getting paid. In other words, while it was during the shutdown, it’s unlikely it played any role in this fiasco. Instead, what happened was that someone got something past TSA because the agency tends to be somewhat incompetent. While we often hear about things they catch–and some of that is completely idiotic, to be honest–they miss an awful lot, too. Stories about the ineffectiveness of the TSA are a staple of news agencies. The individual in question went through one of the busiest airports in the nation during one of the busiest travel seasons of the year and made it through security that is routinely derided for being ineffective. Let’s do the math on this one. The truth is that this had nothing to do with the shutdown. Had the gun owner not been traveling to somewhere like Japan, it’s entirely likely no one would have ever known. Had he been staying inside the U.S., he’d have probably just shipped the gun back home or something rather than call attention to the fact that he’d gotten a gun through security. What happened is that this report is being used to try and hammer the Trump administration over the shutdown. Their hope is that the president will blink and allow Democrats to claim victory over the border wall dispute. Whether or not the wall is a good idea is beyond ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • ‘Rogue’ Gun Dealers Prove How Ineffective Australia’s Gun Laws Are
    Perhaps the most popular place for gun control activists to point to is Australia. They tell us to look at the Land Down Under and see all the country has done with gun control, and that we should embrace that gun control entirely. You know what? Let’s look at Australia and see how well that’s worked. Australia has some of the tightest gun control and border security laws in the world but there are still thousands of weapons the Australian Government can’t trace. In December, a joint operation involving the Australian Border Force (ABF) and New South Wales Police seized an arsenal near Newcastle, including a grenade launcher and a heavy machine gun. Meanwhile, in western Queensland, a haul of 120 firearms including an anti-tank rifle was seized earlier this year. Australia’s border security is capturing a significant amount of illicit firearms and parts. More than 2,000 were confiscated in their most recent survey period between 2017 and 2018, according to the Department of Home Affairs. “The firearms black market, they know what’s available there is always a demand and where there is a demand there is a supply,” Alexey Muraviev, an associate professor of national security at Curtin University, told Ten Daily. The report goes on to note that something like 27,000 guns were stolen from lawful owners between 2007 and 2017 and an estimated 260,000 guns are on the black market. Oh, yeah, gun control is working just great. Let’s also note that Australia has tight border security, unlike the United States. It’s a huge island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It isn’t likely to have guns stroll across its borders like it’s nothing. Australia can’t blame anyone else’s lack of gun control for its issues. Yet criminals are still getting guns. And they’re getting some heavy firepower. The story reports one criminal had an anti-tank rifle. It also shows where police picked up a grenade launcher and what looks like a 50-Caliber M2. These are things that I generally am not picking up at Bass Pro Shops, you know? But they’re running around in Australia. Why? The answer is simple. Criminals do not obey laws. Gun control activists will counter that argument with “they don’t obey any laws, so are you claiming we should get rid of all laws?” They’re right. Criminals don’t obey those laws either. Those laws exist to restrain the law-abiding from hurting other people or taking their stuff and gives us the ability to punish people who cross that line. Yet gun control laws only apply to the law-abiding and effectively restrain their ability to defend themselves. It doesn’t stop criminals at all. That’s what we’re seeing happen in Australia. The bad people are still hurting good people. They’re still getting guns and are still able to use them for nefarious purposes if they so desire. In other words, gun control has failed to disarm the criminals, just like it always has and always will. But that won’t stop gun control zealots from ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Oversight Kills Pro-Gun Amendment In Iowa
    Pro-gun laws are important. Not just for gun rights activists, but society in general. More guns tend to lead to less crime, providing even non-gun owners with a kind of herd immunity against crime. Despite that, we always have a tough fight on our hands whenever a new pro-gun law is proposed. It’s more of an issue when we’re talking an amendment to a state’s constitution. So imagine how bad it sucks when a bureaucratic snafu derails a pro-gun amendment. Actually, we don’t have to imagine. It’s happened. Iowa’s top elections official acknowledged Monday that his office mistakenly derailed a long-sought plan to grant residents more expansive gun rights by forgetting to notify the public of the proposed constitutional amendment, as required. Secretary of State Paul Pate cited a “bureaucratic oversight” for his office’s failure to publish notice of the proposed amendment in newspapers before the November election, as required by the Iowa Constitution. The mistake means supporters likely will have to restart the lengthy process for amending the state constitution and that the earliest the measure could be voted on in a statewide referendum would 2022, instead of 2020. The plan likely would be blocked if Democrats gain control of either legislative chamber before then. “It’s really unfortunate,” Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds said, according to the Des Moines Register. Other supporters reacted with fury to the oversight by Pate, a Republican and lifetime member of the National Rifle Association who supported the proposed amendment. They said they would review any legal options for seeking to fix the error but acknowledged that they would likely have to start again from scratch. “The amendment has been a priority for over a decade now and yes, this may be a monumental setback, but we will continue to press forward and try and get this on the ballot,” said state Rep. Matt Windschitl, a Republican sponsor of the proposed amendment who noted that his initial reaction to the oversight “wouldn’t be publishable.” Ouch. With the issue stemming from something out of the office of a pro-gun official who supported the measure, I can believe it was a mistake. Had this been because of something an anti-gun politician had done, I wouldn’t have believed it. Not in a million years. The amendment would create a state level Second Amendment, complete with the whole “right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” bit. It would also require any gun control to be subject to “strict scrutiny” during judicial review. In other words, it was a damn good amendment. That means the whole process will have to start all over again. With luck, the fact that it’s already passed once will make it a little easier to get through a second time around, but you never can count on that. How many lawmakers went home after the last session and got an earful from their constituents because they had the temerity to support the right to have and carry guns? It doesn’t take much to ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Minnesota Gun Control Fight Appears To Be Heating Up
    There isn’t just one gun control fight. There are hundreds. In addition to the federal level, we have fifty states where gun control is likely to pop up at any given time, plus dozens of cities where some idiot is likely to decide that they need gun control because some jackwagon did something. In other words, there’s a lot of ground to cover. One such fight is heating up in Minnesota, where lawmakers from the Democrat-Farmer-Labor Party (DFL) feel emboldened by recent gains and hope to pressure Republicans to embrace gun control. The bills are part of an ongoing effort led by DFL lawmakers to expand criminal background checks for all gun sales — closing a “loophole” where buyers can obtain firearms through private sales without a check. A second House proposal would enact a “red flag” law that would allow law enforcement or relatives to petition to take guns away from someone suspected of posing a threat to themselves or others. Similar measures are being prepared in the Senate. In announcing the new House proposals, Hortman singled out Sen. Warren Limmer, R-Maple Grove, chairman of the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Finance and Policy Committee, as one of several Republican state senators up for re-election in 2020 in suburban districts where one or more Democratic challengers unseated a Republican. But some Republicans and gun rights advocates remain skeptical as to how much gun issues motivated voters during the 2018 midterms, saying that President Donald Trump’s unpopularity and other issues like immigration and health care were more decisive. Activists also point out that several incumbent Republican lawmakers who either signed onto or entertained backing gun control bills still lost their re-election bids in 2018. Still, Limmer, from whose committee any new Senate bills on gun regulation would need to pass, acknowledged in a recent statement that “gun safety will continue to be a topic of discussion at the Capitol next session.” “Last year, those conversations led to a significant investment in school safety that I’m very proud of, and I think there will be interest in doing more for schools this year,” Limmer said. “With divided government, any new solutions will need to have wide bipartisan support to be seriously considered.” Gun rights activists are also digging in and are ready for a fight. It’s funny that a universal background check system is such a priority since even liberal website Vox agrees that they’re useless. The fact that they’re pushing for this despite their side coming to terms with the fact that this doesn’t work is telling. It tells us that they don’t actually care about safety, but about adding layers of restrictions. The other item on their agenda, a red flag law, is one of those things that I’m sorry to say will likely happen. They poll well, and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) pushing for one at the federal level will give them some degree of political cover for voting in favor of one. The truth is, we don’t ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • NJ Activists Think State’s Gun Control Insufficient, Demand Federal Laws
    New Jersey is one of the most anti-gun states in the nation. Its laws are extensive and foreboding, and it vigorously enforces those laws as best as it can, including prosecuting people who are just driving through despite federal law. And yet, those laws are doing little to nothing to curb gun violence in the state. Shocking, I know. Now, a group of activists is demanding federal laws change because of a local problem. In the wake of a pair of shootings that left four people injured, a group of activists met on the City Hall steps Monday to demand … well, a lot of things. An end to gang violence in Jersey City. The passage of “common sense” gun control legislation in the U.S. Congress. An increase in funding for education. More attention on the violence that has plagued the south side of the city. Less attention on the criminal histories of some of the victims. The broad list of potential solutions to Jersey City’s violence problem came three days after a shooting at the Newport mall left panicked shoppers hiding inside stores, and five days after a daytime shooting on Grant Avenue led to lockdowns at three schools. City officials believe the shootings are connected and gang-related. On Monday morning shots were fired on Rose Avenue, though no one appeared to be struck. I’m sympathetic to the problem. But it’s a local problem that requires a local solution. Federal gun laws that mimic New Jersey’s overly-restrictive regulations aren’t going to happen and for good reason. For one, they don’t work. The fact that people felt the need to hold a demonstration is proof that gun laws don’t work. They’ve never worked. Plus, even if they worked in New Jersey, they wouldn’t necessarily be the answer elsewhere. The idea that a solution for New Jersey works in Alabama is hubris at best. I’m not about to say that there’s not a problem in New Jersey, but that problem has roots that run deeper than whether they can get their hands on guns despite laws meant to disarm them. They’re always going to get guns — the moment you accept that you can start looking at real solutions. You can start figuring out how to keep people from joining gangs in the first place. You can start looking at how to encourage people to leave them. You can start working to undermine the culture that encourages young men to go out and get involved in this in the first place. You can change the problem completely. All without a single gun law. The problem is, some people don’t get that guns are nothing more than a tool. They can be misused, but they’re not the problem. People are and always have been the problem. The moment you understand that and accept it, the easier it can be to stop blaming tools with no mind of their own and start working toward real, effective answers. The question is, does anyone spouting this in New Jersey ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • OR Gun Control Bill Would Ban Most Handguns, Become Strictest In Nation
    There’s an old saying that basically says to never attribute anything to malice that can be easily explained by incompetence. There’s something to be said for that. After all, people are more likely to screw up than be evil, by and large. But then you see the bill out of Oregon and realize that at the end of the day, at least when it comes to politics, it really doesn’t matter if it’s stupidity or evil. Either way, it’s an abomination. Legislation submitted in the Democrat-controlled Oregon legislature would fundamentally change the state’s firearm laws, recasting them as the most restrictive in the country. State Sen. Rob Wagner has submitted SB 501 for the upcoming session. Wagner’s bill would require licensing for gun owners prior to purchase, outlaw firearm magazines capable of holding more than five rounds and limit individual ammunition sales to no more than 20 rounds every 30 days. Wagner conceded to local media that it was “probably a long shot that something like this passes in whole cloth,” but is proceeding with the measure on behalf of a group of student gun control advocates. A Portland-area Democrat, Wagner was endorsed by New York billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown group who also contributed directly to his campaign last fall. Besides its restrictions on ammunition and requirements for licensing, SB 501 would also mandate that background checks be delayed for 14-days so that state police can research would-be buyers, fine gun owners who failed to report lost or stolen firearms and require guns be locked up when not in use. There would be no grandfathering of magazines affected by the ban. Five rounds. Right now, there aren’t many semi-auto magazines being manufactured with five rounds or less. Oh, they could be made, I’m sure, but this would require every magazine manufacturer to either write off Oregon as a market or start tooling up to offer five-round magazines. And there’s a good chance Oregonians will have to say goodbye to their wheel guns, as Rep. Bill Post (R-Keizer, OR) notes, “That means your old six shot revolver would be required to be turned in or destroyed.” Wagner refers to this as a long shot, and it is. It’s a major longshot, but the fact that he’s presenting this at all means he feels emboldened. He feels nice and safe and thinks he can get away with this kind of thing. Not just that, though. He also feels like there’s at least a sliver of a chance he could see this bill become law, even in a toned-down version. Yet what he’s actually done is given us a glimpse behind the curtain. You see, gun control isn’t going to just happen one day. It’s going to be incremental changes to our laws. Proponents will call them “common sense” rules designed to keep people safe. They’ll even believe that. But since it won’t work, they’ll keep pushing for more and more rules, all while swearing they’re not coming for your guns. Then, one day, they’ll pass a law that will basically be ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, January 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Canadians Respond To Registration Much Like Americans Do
    Any time there’s an effort to require people to register their guns, we routinely see few Americans willing to comply. Efforts in Boulder, Colorado are the most recent example. It’s not the first time that’s happened, either. Instead, it sounds like it’s about par for the course for citizens of a country born out of a defiant nature when faced with tyranny. Yet it seems that some of our neighbors to the North have a bit of that defiant streak as well when it comes to gun registration. The deadline for Quebecers to register their firearms is just over two weeks away, but the vast majority of guns in the province remain unregistered. Quebec’s Public Security Ministry says that 311,451 of the province’s non-restricted firearms, which include hunting rifles, carbines and other long guns, have been registered so far. That’s up from 294,125 before the holidays, but is still less than 20 per cent of the 1.6 million firearms that were registered in the province when the federal registry was in effect. … Other gun owners have taken to social media to call for a complete boycott of the provincial registry. “You’re targeting the wrong audience,” said [director of security for the Lower Canada Arms Collectors Association Steve] Torino. He argues that people using guns for criminal purposes will not register their weapons anyway, and that gun owners already undergo a thorough federal licensing process. Ah, it warms my Second Amendment-loving heart. It’s especially warming to know that they don’t have a Second Amendment to rally around up that way. They’re doing it out of an innate sense of right and wrong, which is fine with me. Look, like Torino said, they’re targeting the wrong people. The people they need to be looking at are people who would never register a firearm. They get them illegally and use them illegally and never even pretend to comply with the law. Further, if a federal registration didn’t work, why would a provincial one be more effective? While I tend to believe that laws work better on a smaller level, guns are small and portable. They can easily leave one province of Canada for another. Then again, it’s not like anyone expects it to work. They’re just too uncomfortable with the idea of people buying and owning guns without them knowing everything about it. They’re not happy that people aren’t beholden to their masters and so they want to require registration as a way to make them beholden. It’s a power trip and little else. It’s not even about control because anyone with any sense knows there won’t be any. They can’t control anything, even if people register their guns. Thefts alone make any registration scheme less than useless. No, it’s about doing this kind of thing because they can. Frankly, that’s what most gun control efforts are. They’re about making people feel a bit better despite knowing it won’t work worth a damn. The post Canadians Respond To Registration Much Like Americans Do ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Mausers for the Masses: The Budget Master M18 FOR THE MASSES (VIDEO)
    Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared on Guns.com.   For more than 120 years, the Mauser brand and its M98 bolt action rifles have defined both reliability and quality in the civilian and military markets. This year, the Mauser company, now known for high-end rifles, has jumped both boots into the budget hunting market with their new M18. Guns.com finds out whether this German-made “People’s Rifle” will resonate with an American market. Though a budget Mauser seems as foreign as schnitzel at the food court, here we are with a synthetic stock, matte blued piece wearing the old Mauser logo recognizable from military rifles of many decades and world wars past. The M18 is a traditional bolt action centerfire rifle that Mauser defines as a “no-frills” rifle that “brings together all the essentials for hunting in the best ­possible way and does not include ­anything that isn’t necessary in the field.” The M18 is indeed utilitarian, built with solid steel construction. Cold hammered barrels are geared toward long-term accuracy. An adjustable trigger comes standard. The company’s “multi-purpose end cap” is actually a removeable, rubberized buttpad with space for internal storage. Sling swivels come standard, and while the rifle ships sans scope bases, the M18 accepts Remington 700 two-piece mounts. All M18’s come with the same stock, though standard calibers wear a 22 inch barrels while Magnum chamberings have the longer 24 inch tube. The M18 is now shipping chamberings in: .243 Win, .308 Win, 6.5 Creedmoor, .270 Win, .30-06 Spfld, 7mm Rem Mag, and .300 Win Mag. MSRP on the M18 in its variety of calibers is $699, a far cry from the $13,000+ price tag of the current production Mauser M98 Magnum. RANGE TIME While we are not generally fans of black synthetic stocks, the lines on the M18 are sleek, modern, and attractive. Furthermore, the synthetic stock is foam filled and hearty, so it has a sturdy feel rather than the hollow and chintzy feel often synonymous with cheaper synthetic stocks. Though they are not overtly visible, two rubberized grip panels at both the forend and pistol grip offer welcome hand-traction for hunting in inclement weather. In a creative move, the Mauser logo panel on the bilateral buttstock doubles as a push-button release for the thick rubber butt pad. Inside, there’s room for small item storage, which just happens to neatly stash a Bore Snake or similar cleaning device. The three-lug bolt runs smooth, while the short throw not only clears optics with ease, but makes for rapid cycling in the field. While the familiar three-position, bolt-mounted operations from the M98 are absent, the M18 still utilizes a three-position safety, this time mounted at the right of the action. Not many rifles these days — and far fewer budget rifles — make use of the three-position safety, which is an excellent and welcome safety feature allowing the bolt to be opened while the safety remains engaged. Furthermore, the M18’s quiet operation is a boon for hunters. The ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By BA Staff
    5 days ago
  • School Kids’ ‘Smart Gun’ Prototype Shows Lack Of Gun Knowledge
    Many of us are less than thrilled with the idea of smart guns. There are myriad reasons why, but that doesn’t stop it from being pushed by those who don’t understand guns in the first place. An example of that surfaced recently. It seems a group of engineering students has decided to take on smart gun technology to curb mass shootings. In addition to the previous problems, they’ve managed to add yet another. It seems no one involved understands the first thing about personal defense. After the Las Vegas concert massacre, the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and numerous guns brought on local campuses, the group of students said enough’s enough and developed what they hope will be a solution. “It’s fear stimulating and in my group we were like, we can’t deal with this, we have to do something about it,” said Salwa Shahid, a junior at Plano West High School. … A camera on the front uses artificial intelligence to detect if a gun is pointed at a person, crowd, animal or target. If aimed at a person or crowd, the gun limits the amount of times you can pull the trigger. “You still are allowed to do one bullet every 20 seconds so you still are allowed to use self-defense so it’s still going to work,” said Shahid. GPS on the gun would create geo-fences, stopping it from firing in certain locations like schools and churches. So, it’ll only let me shoot once every 20 seconds, right? What if I miss? Gunfights are dynamic. People don’t stay in one place and let you take careful aim at them. They’re moving. Couple that with the adrenaline coursing through your veins and it’s a recipe for missed shots. There’s a reason why police tend to fire so many shots and register a relatively small number of hits. Misses are a part of life, and this technology would prevent me from following up quickly. While it may also stop a mass shooter from doing the same, a mass shooter has the opportunity to plan his attack. He’d take two guns and double his rate of fire, or he’ll hack the software and disable that feature. Hard pass. Then let’s talk about the geo-fencing idea. It sounds great, but let’s look at last year’s Sutherland Springs shooting, where a good guy with a gun responded. Now, let’s say he had to step across a property line to respond to a mass shooting in progress. This system would disable the weapon, thus preventing the needed response just because they moved a few feet too far to try and save human lives. Granted, these are kids trying to learn engineering and nothing is likely to come of it. Thankfully. Unfortunately, this is still an example of people who don’t understand the problem trying to come up with a solution. They think they understand the nuances of the issue, but they don’t. At all. Their firearm education comes from the movies where the good ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Ex-DEA Agent Gets Probation For Running Guns To Border Drug Traffickers
    In theory, our laws are supposed to treat every one of us as equal. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you did; you’re supposed to be treated no differently than anyone else accused of a similar crime. It’s part of what makes this country great. However, there are times when it feels like it’s a lie. For example, I find it very difficult to imagine getting off with just probation if I were providing AR-15s to Mexican drug traffickers. But then again, I’m not a former DEA agent. Although federal prosecutors sought jail time, citing memories of Fast and Furious gun-walking scandals, the former Drug Enforcement Agency agent was given probation on weapon charges. Joseph Gill, 42, was sentenced on Monday to five years probation with the first six months of the term spent in home detention after pleading guilty last October to two counts of illegally dealing firearms. While investigators determined he may have been sold as many as 100 guns in private transactions over the past several years, it was the sale of two AR-15s to members of a drug trafficking organization in 2016 that triggered his arrest. In a memo to the court penned by Assistant U.S. Attorney Phillip Smith prior to sentencing, the prosecutor argued that Gill should receive at least 18 months jail time, followed by three years probation and a $100,000 fine, saying, “He sold weapons when he knew he should not have, and under circumstances which he should not have.” A former supervisory special agent assigned to the border town of Nogales, Arizona, court documents show that Gill came under scrutiny after he sold “scores” of guns without a federal firearms license. Although at one time he had an ATF Curio and Relics (C&R) license, the type typically maintained by collectors of vintage firearms, he let it lapse. Similarly, he withdrew a further application for an FFL. Gill apparently purchased two AR-15s online for $632 each and had them shipped to an FFL holder in Arizona. He then turned around and sold them for $1,000 a month later to people prosecutors argued he should have known were up to no good. And despite prosecutors wanting him to see some jail time, the judge let him off with probation. Oh, he’s done with buying guns legally, I’m sure, but I can’t help but wonder what would have happened to any of us if we’d been in a similar situation. Granted, I think most of us wouldn’t have sold guns to members of the Mexican Cartels, but if we had and were prosecuted, I think we all know that we’d get hammered by the judge. Personally, I’d expect to see at least a couple of years in federal prison at a minimum. I’d expect the full force of the government to descend upon my head like the fiery hand of God. Probation wouldn’t be in the cards unless I rolled over on a lot of people, and even then… This is why so many ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    6 days ago
  • How Gun Control Failures Contributed To CA Officer’s Murder
    The only thing gun control seems to do consistently is fail. It doesn’t stop crime; it doesn’t stop mass shootings, it doesn’t stop anything except for law-abiding citizens having an effective means to defend their own life. Last week, the murder of a California police officer highlighted some of the ways they fail and give, at best, an illusion of safety. The gunman who shot and killed Davis Police Officer Natalie Corona Thursday night has been identified as Kevin Douglas Limbaugh, a 48-year-old man who was ordered last fall to surrender a semiautomatic rifle after he was convicted in a battery case. Yolo County Superior Court records show Limbaugh was charged in September with battery with serious bodily injury, a incident that a source said stemmed from him punching a co-worker at Cache Creek Casino in the face after a dispute. The case was resolved as a misdemeanor conviction, and California Department of Justice records show he agreed to surrender a black .223-caliber Bushmaster AR-15 rifle in November. Court records suggested Limbaugh did not possess any other weapons, and authorities have yet to determine where he obtained the two semiautomatic handguns he may have used in a Thursday night rampage that killed the 22-year-old officer and shot up a surrounding downtown neighborhood. Now, let’s bear in mind that California has more gun control on the books than any other state in the country. It’s pretty much illegal to pass gas while holding a firearm and not report it to someone, for crying out loud. Yet this individual was ordered to turn in an AR-15 and didn’t, then somehow managed to have two semi-automatic handguns the state knew nothing about whatsoever. Why, to an outside observer, it looks like California’s gun control laws didn’t accomplish a damn thing, now did they? The kabuki theater that passes for gun control allows politicians and activists to pretend they’re making things safer, but it doesn’t do anything of the sort. The allegations state that a man who was legally required to turn in his AR-15 did no such thing. The allegations state he also had two unregistered semi-automatic pistols the state knew nothing about despite the extensive laws on the books that supposedly prevent that. The allegations state that despite the laws meant to disarm this individual, he was able to shoot and kill a law enforcement officer who was acting in the course of her duties. In other words, the allegations make it clear that gun control does precisely jack. Meanwhile, law-abiding citizens can only purchase handguns from a list of dwindling supplies and have to jump through useless hoops to possess even a single-shot rifle. Tell me more about how gun laws make people safer. Tell me more about how laws stop bad people from getting guns and doing bad things. Tell me more about all of that because I love a good fantasy story. For the record, stories with elves and dragons are infinitely more believable than the fantasy of ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    6 days ago
  • ‘Active Shooter’ And Hostage Situation At New Jersey UPS Facility ‘Resolved’
    Law enforcement quickly responded to a reported “active hostage situation” at a UPS mail facility in Logan Township, New Jersey early Monday morning. The situation has since been “resolved,” says Gloucester County Prosecutor Charles Fiore. According to local reporting, a man entered the facility, pistol-whipped a security guard on duty, and fired several shots before taking two individuals hostage. One of the hostages is reportedly the man’s ex-girlfriend. A source told the Associated Press that there were no injuries from the initial shooting. Another witness told NBC10 that the shooter, while holding the gun to the woman’s head, yelled, “I am not going to jail, but I will kill you.” According to Fiore, the shooter was later shot and rushed to a nearby hospital. The extent of his injuries is not known. Both hostages are reportedly safe. UPS and the FBI have been working alongside law enforcement, but neither has provided additional information on the situation or about who was involved. Other employees in the facility were able to evacuate successfully, and a bus was used to transport them to a nearby hotel. A number of other facilities and a school nearby have been on lockdown. All students and staff were also reported safe. This story is still developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.  The post ‘Active Shooter’ And Hostage Situation At New Jersey UPS Facility ‘Resolved’ appeared first on Bearing Arms. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By BearingArms.com Staff
    6 days ago
  • Column: No Rational Person Backs AR-15 Ownership
    Did you know that you’re irrational? I sure didn’t. I mean, there are a lot of things I probably get irrational about, but I think that’s true for most of us. Child abuse, for example, tends to make me very irrational and I’m OK with that. But my support for the Second Amendment isn’t irrational. It’s based on a fair bit of reasoned thinking, just like most of you reading, I suspect. However, a columnist for the Fayetteville Observer begs to disagree. Last year, Dean Winslow, a doctor and retired Air Force colonel was going through confirmation hearings before a Senate committee for a job as Trump’s assistant secretary of defense for health affairs. He offered the opinion that it was “insane” that in the U.S. “a civilian can go out and buy a semiautomatic assault rifle like an AR-15.” He looked at it from the perspective as a military doctor who had treated combat wounds. Winslow believes the moment of truth cost him the job in Trump’s cabinet, as he later wrote in an opinion piece. He noted he had arrived at his hearing the day after massacre at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. “Unfortunately,” he wrote, “I do not possess one credential the committee wanted to see: I do not support the unrestricted ownership of semiautomatic assault weapons by civilians.” No rational person would — unless it is someone with their own idiosyncratic attachment to the AR-15 or is a politician paid off by the National Rifle Association, the gun industry or some other lobbyist. If you support AR-15 ownership, you’re not rational no matter what. This columnist discredits your opinions outright because you’re irrational and his sole criteria for determining that is your refusal to side with him. Either that or you’re bought and paid for because no one would look at this and come up with anything other than what he did. The problem with this is that if anyone were to look at this rationally, they’d recognize that the problem is not now and never has been the AR-15 or other so-called “assault rifles.” First, there is the minuscule number of crimes committed by people wielding AR-15s. While mass shootings make major headlines, they also make up the vast majority of illicit uses of AR-15s, and they’re far from the only tool used for such things. To date, the most deadly school shooting in the country remains Virginia Tech. The gunman there used two semi-automatic pistols. This is a rational observation. Second, there’s the fact that there are millions upon millions of these weapons in circulation. They’re popular and in common use, which means they meet the Heller test. They’re used lawfully by something like 99.99 percent of those who own the weapons (not an official stat, I should state, just a guesstimate based on observations and the fact that they’re used in so few crimes despite being so popular). This is a rational observation. Finally, this also ties into the fact that we have a ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, January 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    6 days ago