Bearing Arms

  • Maryland House Passes Two Gun Control Bills
    The state of Maryland has plenty of gun control. It also has plenty of violence in Baltimore despite all that gun control. Or should I say because of it? Either way, the state doesn’t seem interested in trying something different. Nope, it’s going to double down on the gun control path. The Maryland House of Delegates gave final approval Monday to bills that would ban 3D printed guns and require background checks for all sales of long guns, such as shotguns and rifles. The bills are among the priorities of gun-control advocates, but just as strongly opposed by gun-rights supporters. After the background-check bill was approved on a 90-49 vote, a couple of observers on the House balcony shouted: “We will not comply! We will not comply!” — a slogan favored by gun rights supporters, indicating they won’t follow the bill if it becomes law. Under current law, background checks are required for long guns only when purchased at licensed dealers. … Supporters argue that long guns are just as dangerous as handguns, and that background checks should be required for all sales of long guns. They note that a shotgun was used by a man who burst into The Capital newspaper office in Annapolis last June, killing five employees. And yet, since the vast majority of crimes are committed with handguns, how have those universal background checks curbed violence in Baltimore? Hmm? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Look, I get the desire to do something, but anti-gunners never take a step back and wonder if they’re doing anything useful. They simply go full-bore into whatever the latest popular measure among their crowd is and start to ram it down people’s throats. Meanwhile, the only people impacted by this are the law-abiding citizens who are getting good and fed up with this crap. People are saying they won’t comply because they’re being ignored completely throughout the process. We’re telling them where people buy guns. We’ve got the Department of Justice telling us where criminal buy them, too. Lawmakers are being told how this doesn’t stop the bad people from doing bad things. That doesn’t stop legislators from doing whatever the hell they want despite the plain, clear reality right in front of them. The only possible takeaway is that they don’t care. So people are not going to comply with the law. They’re going to hoist their middle fingers and do what they want. You can only push a law-abiding man so far before he’s had enough. When that happens, their only option is to spit on the hands, hoist the black flag, and to go to town. No one wants that, but what else can you do when the people who make the laws also make it clear that they don’t give a damn about you and yours? What are you supposed to do when the laws of your state are working against you in every conceivable way? Moving is an easy option, but it’s not an option for many people. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 hours ago
  • Kirsten Gillibrand Regrets Pro-Gun History
    AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) used to be pretty pro-gun. She was a pro-gun Democrat, a rare breed to be sure. Then she got into the United States Senate. Now that she’s running for president everything changed, and now she’s claiming she regrets her pro-gun past. “I regret, actually, not caring about other communities,” Gillibrand said about her time in office. “My community didn’t have the gun violence that other parts of the state had, and in fact, the biggest issue for upstate New York was hunting rights.” “My mother didn’t just cook the Thanksgiving turkey, she shot the Thanksgiving turkey, so I came from a different lens, but what I regret is I should have cared more about ending gun violence in other places and so the first thing I did when I became a senator was met with families who lost their loved ones to gun violence,” she continued. “When you meet a mother or father who has lost a child to gun violence, there is no way you will ever not answer them directly and say I will do something to end gun violence, and that’s what I did.” In other words, she’s blatantly admitting that emotion, not facts, drives her. Shocking, I know. Since taking office, Gillibrand has shifted more and more to the left politically, a shift that indicates she completely lacks principles. Instead, she follows whatever is trendy in the constituency so she can stay elected. That’s not likely to play well with middle America, and pretending that gun control that has failed the inner cities should be pushed on rural communities is outright insane. After all, some places you have to wait for a long period before the police can arrive. Not through any maliciousness on the part of officers, or laziness, but that you have only a few officers–usually sheriff’s deputies–for an entire county. That creates a delay. Why does that matter? Because when seconds count, help is at least a half-hour away. Gillibrand and her fellow travelers would seek to impose inner-city failed solutions on the rest of the country, potentially resulting in numerous deaths that could have been prevented. Not that she cares. Despite her rural roots, Gillibrand is more interested in winning hearts and minds in the big cities where people have been brainwashed to believe that gun control works. As such, she’s going to pander to them. Who cares what the rest of us do, right? She’s pretty close to reaching the “let them eat cake” point. Unfortunately, I doubt this will serve her particularly well. While anti-gunners feel emboldened following Parkland, they’re misunderstanding what modest gains they made in the midterms. As a result, they’re convinced going further left on guns is a winning strategy. I have a feeling they’re going to find out very differently in 2020. I wonder what Gillibrand will do when she realizes her pandering was all for naught? She can claim to be shifting back to pro-gun, but no ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 hours ago
  • Joe Scarborough Proves He’s An Idiot On Guns
    AP Photo/Steven Senne, File I don’t expect news people to be gun experts, by and large. I mean, they cover all kinds of stories, and there’s no way they can be knowledgable on everything. Hell, they’re often not knowledgable on most things. It’s not their job. Their job is to report what those who are knowledgable say and think. Joe Scarborough, however, is a commentator. As one myself, we tend to speak our minds and our thoughts, which means it’s often important that we keep our mouths shut on things we don’t know anything about. Joe never got that lesson, apparently. Here’s an article from 1981 explaining how the Pentagon’s failure to use the AR-15 in Vietnam cost American lives. The AR-15 was proven to be lighter & more lethal than the M-14 or M-16. It was designed exclusively by Eugene Stoner to kill people in war. https://t.co/lAKA6USUlj — Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) March 18, 2019 As a longtime gun owner and supporter of the Second Amendment, I agreed with the Supreme Court’s “Heller” holding that concluded Americans had the right to keep and bear arms. But that constitutional protection did not, and will not, extend to guns designed as weapons of war. — Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) March 18, 2019 Scarborough needs to go back and re-read that piece from The Atlantic. The AR-15 was considered the better firearm, not because it was more deadly than the M-16, but because it was more reliable and a lighter. The M-16 was modified to have a manual bolt-closure, for example. Further, some of the Army’s “improvements” made the weapon less reliable. The AR-15 was preferred over the M-14 for many of the same reasons. It was accurate, reliable, and light. That’s great if you have to carry a firearm around with you all day as soldiers do. Or, you know, like many hunters. Despite the claims by Scarborough, nothing in that article makes the AR-15 a “weapon of war,” and his claims of supporting the Second Amendment ring hollow after he parroted a noted anti-gun talking point in that. After all, show just one military that issues the AR-15. Claiming that the M-16/M-4 is close enough to the AR-15 for the term to apply leads us down a very slippery slope. That same logic could label something like the Remington 700, a bolt-action rifle-as a “weapon of war” too. After all, it’s the chassis for the Marine Corps sniper rifles. Functionally, there’s little difference between the two, even less difference between one of them than between the AR-15 and the M-4. And that’s what Scarborough is missing here. Those differences are important. They’re key. But when you’re pushing an anti-gun agenda, you don’t want those differences noted. You don’t want people to realize that those differences matter. The AR-15 is light and reliable, but the same can be said of a lot of firearms. Is that grounds to ban them? Of course not. But that’s what Scarborough appears to be advocating for with ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    6 hours ago
  • Countries Embracing Gun Control Doesn’t Equal Caring For Its People
    AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File I get that not everyone agrees with me on guns. We live in a world where people can’t even agree on what color a freaking dress is from time to time (I still say the damn thing was white and gold and even after all of this time, I’m not changing!), so how can we agree on something as complex as guns? But I’m getting sick of this notion that gun control equals caring. What this stems from is an article that’s running in several places. Titled, “New Zealand is bringing in gun control after one mass shooting. Why doesn’t America value its citizens in the same way?” it makes the case that refusal to pass gun control is somehow less caring, that our country doesn’t value its citizens because it doesn’t take away our rights. However, let’s take a look at some of the arguments. But nearly 30 years later, the gun conversation in America is very different. Including suicide deaths, over 40,000 Americans die each year due to guns. We can make many valid arguments about the need for better mental healthcare for veterans when 22 commit suicide a day, or even for combating gang violence in inner cities nationwide. These are undoubtedly very important issues. But what they have in common is the way in which they are exacerbated by the unrestricted availability of guns to criminals, domestic abusers, violent felons, and violent men in our country. Except all of those people, those demonstrated actually to be those things, are restricted from owning guns. Seriously, those laws have been on the books for years. They just don’t work. We know that the laws don’t work. How? Because they’ve been on the books for years and the bad guys keep getting guns, even in states with universal background checks. Those who oppose responsible gun legislation claim that gun laws won’t work because criminals will still find a way to get guns. By such logic we shouldn’t have any laws at all because, after all, criminals will break them. I’ll ask such critics to consider that no one law is perfect, however we can enact meaningful legislation to ensure criminals have a much more difficult time acquiring a gun — while the rest of us law-abiding citizens can still access them as the Constitution guarantees. Who can honestly claim that domestic abusers and violent felons deserve easy access to firearms? No one is. However, the problem here is the logic that precedes the question. You see, the reason gun control’s failures should disqualify it as an option is simple. You see, laws like murder and robbery apply to all. They’re there so they can be used to punish the bad people who break those laws. They don’t have any impact on law-abiding people who wouldn’t do those things anyway. Gun laws, however, don’t work that way. We already know criminals will continue to get guns. We have the Department of Justice’s study to show that. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    8 hours ago
  • Oregon Lawmakers Effectively Kill Ridiculous Gun Control Bill
    AP Photo/Andrew Selsky An Oregon bill wanted to impose draconian restrictions on gun owners. For example, it would limit round capacity to just five rounds. That would have made most revolvers illegal. As progressive as Oregon is, it sounded like something lawmakers would consider. Amazingly, better sense prevailed. When Portland high schooler Eliana Andrews helped organize the 2018 March For Our Lives in downtown Portland, she said many Oregon legislators approached her and her peers, eager to work with them to create new state gun laws. That encouragement kick-started efforts that led to the creation of Senate Bill 501, a comprehensive gun control bill authored by Portland area group Students for Change. But now that a concrete bill is in front of them, Andrews said, Oregon legislators aren’t as interested in passing wide-reaching gun control legislation. In fact, they’re keeping the bill from moving forward. “Now that we brought something, they won’t support it,” she said, “and they won’t really talk to us about it, which is really disappointing.” If passed, SB 501 would enact sweeping gun control reform in Oregon. Its stipulations include requiring people to have a permit before purchasing a gun, obliging gun owners to properly lock and store their weapons when not in use, and placing limits on how much ammunition someone can buy in a month, among others. Andrews said that each requirement in the bill was modeled after gun control legislation that passed elsewhere—Colorado was a particular source of inspiration—and designed to prevent mass shootings. There’s just one problem: SB 501 isn’t going to get a hearing in the senate’s judiciary committee, meaning it likely won’t be voted on this session. That’s disappointing for the Portland area teens who researched and authored the bill with the straightforward goal of reducing gun violence in schools. Andrews can claim that each requirement is modeled after something passed elsewhere, but she’s not mentioning that she took what passed and turned it up to 11. For example, we have the aforementioned round capacity. Yes, many states limit round capacity. It’s stupid, but they do. However, none restrict it to such an insane degree that even century-old models of firearms like revolvers couldn’t comply with it. Yes, other states have started restricting ammunition purchases, but SB 501 would limit people to 20 rounds per month. No one does that anywhere in the country. That’s not even enough to maintain marksmanship skills for many owners, especially those with multiple handguns of different calibers. For example, if you have a .38 and a 9mm, you only get to buy ten rounds for each. Don’t forget self-defense ammo, either. You have to decide what you’re going to buy at any given time. The bill wasn’t “common sense gun control,” it was legislative insanity. These teens can lament it all they want, but they just learned a very harsh lesson about the legislative process. They learned they couldn’t take a law from another state, ramp it up a ridiculous degree, and foist it onto a state’s population ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    10 hours ago
  • Elizabeth Warren Claims Gun Laws Don’t Reflect Our Values And Morals
    AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) wants to be president. She wants it so badly she can taste it, I’m sure, which makes it hilarious that she has the audacity to claim that American gun laws-a unique feature of the United States in this day and age–don’t reflect our morals and values. Of course, she’s referring to our right to keep and bear arms, rather than the laws that infringe on that freedom. Shocking, I know. Monday night was Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-MA) chance to answer questions during a CNN town hall. Naturally, one of the questions an audience member asked was about firearms and how to curb gun violence. Warren’s response was nothing shy of the normal anti-gunner sentiment. “So, here’s how I look at this. Laws should reflect our values. Laws are about our morals,” Warren replied. “And, right now, across this country, we lose, on average, seven and teenagers every single day to gun violence. Just pause for a minute and think. If we were losing seven children every single day to some mysterious virus, man, we’d be pulling out all the stops to say, ‘What can we do to change that? Where’s the medicine we need to develop? How can we respond? Where do we need to do?’” Warren went on to suggest that absolutely nothing is being done to curb gun violence. “But, instead, with gun violence, right now, we don’t do anything, not even the most sensible kinds of things. Background checks at the federal level. No fly, no buy. Like, if you’re on the terrorist watch list, maybe you shouldn’t be able to buy a gun,” Warren explained. Beth Baumann of Townhall dismantles Warren’s argument that nothing’s being done to combat gun violence. She does it quite well, and I encourage you to click on over and check it out. As for me, I’m mostly sitting here laughing at a woman talking about values and morals when we know she lied about her heritage for years. A woman who claims she never used it for advancement, yet we see numerous documents indicating that she did. She took a DNA test to prove she was Native American, turned out to be 1/1024th, and then played like she’d been vindicated. And she’s going to lecture us on morals and values? What’s next? Is Hillary Clinton going to teach us about cybersecurity? Are we going to resurrect Ted Kennedy for a driving lesson? Seriously, where does this end? The fact of the matter is that one of our highest values is the ability to defend ourselves and others. We hold those who put themselves in danger to protect others as heroes, as one of the highest moral goods an individual can do. Sen. Warren would argue that having the means to protect others–namely, a gun–somehow makes you immoral? That’s what it means to be American, to have the choice to act as you see fit in such circumstances. But Sen. Warren and her ilk are trying ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    12 hours ago
  • Third Mass Shooting In A Week, This Time In Netherlands
      For the third time in less than a week, a foreign nation is rocked by a mass shooting. Once again, anti-gunners are pretending they never claimed this was a uniquely American problem. In a similar manner to Christchurch, NZ, this appears to be an act of terrorism. An act that left three people dead. Dutch police arrested a suspect in a deadly shooting aboard a tram Monday that officials said bore the hallmarks of a terror attack. The shooting took place aboard a tram in the city of Utrecht, leaving three people dead and five others injured. Emergency officials treated the injured at 24 October Square station, named in honor of the founding of the United Nations. “Several shots were fired in a tram and several people were injured,” police spokesman Joost Lanshage said. The suspect, identified as [Name redacted] of Turkey, led officials on a manhunt for hours before his arrest, Utrecht police said. … “Today is a black day for our city, for Utrecht. Unsuspecting and innocent people in the tram on their way to work or school were attacked,” Utrecht Mayor Jan van Zanen said according to the Telegraph. The Netherlands as very tight gun control requirements, so tight that New Zealand looks downright lax in comparison. Guns are relegated to police, hunters, and target shooters. There are hurdles members of those last two groups have to clear before getting their guns. Self-defense isn’t considered a viable reason to own a gun there. And yet, a terrorist got his hands on a firearm. There’s been no mention of how he got it, but either way, it kind of proves a key point. Namely, that the bad guys will continue to get firearms and gun control laws only leave the innocent defenseless in the face of evil. Since last week, I’ve written three different times about mass shootings. In every case, it was a country with tougher gun control legislation than the United States has. Meanwhile, anti-gunners are intent on blaming us, the NRA, and anyone else for the problem here in the United States but ignoring that the same thing happens elsewhere. The problem isn’t gun laws or the lack thereof. No, the problem is that there is something very broken in humanity. Somehow, people are thinking things like this are a viable option for achieving their goals. People are sitting there thinking, “You know what? That’s a hell of an idea.” That is the problem. In too many cases, there’s just too much rage built into some people, rage they don’t seem to have any other release for, so it explodes into the senseless slaughter of innocent people. In other cases, it’s nothing more than a tactic to achieve a political goal. Either way, though, something is broken within them. Meanwhile, something is also broken in people who think this means we should have to give up our own guns, our own right to keep and bear arms. We all know someone will try to make that ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Tuesday, March 19, 2019By Tom Knighton
    13 hours ago
  • Virginia Roofing Company Giving Away Free Gun With Purchase
    AP Photo/Brennan Linsley You know the deal where if you buy X, you get Y? It’s a common bit of marketing. Usually, it’s something that’s not overly expensive compared to what the product is, but it’s rarely about getting you to buy X. Instead, it’s about getting you to buy it from that company. It’s a case of making the deal a little sweeter so that you make the purchase you were already going to make, but you buy it from their company instead of a competitor. Frankly, it’s a tried and true tactic. One roofing company in Virginia is trying it. The giveaway is a firearm in exchange for your patronage. A Virginia roofing company is offering a free AR-15 with a new roof installation. LMC Exteriors announced the limited-time promo on social media saying “We are the only contractor in the state of Virginia that’s giving away a free gun after the completion of every roof, siding or window purchase.” What they’re doing is giving customers a voucher that they can exchange at a local gun store which will conduct the federally-required background check. Of course, depending on what the politics are like in their location, it may also stir up a bit of controversy. Virginia has been trending blue over the last few years, so it’s possible this will stir up the locals. If so, it may also fire up the hardcore pro-gun crowd to get their new roofs or windows from this company in particular. For better or worse, the anti-gun left has been polarizing American businesses left and right. They’ve been pushing to create explicitly anti-gun companies. They’ve succeeded with companies like Dick’s Sporting Goods, TOMS, and Levi’s. They shouldn’t be surprised with companies starting to take an explicitly pro-gun position. A good number of American still believe in the Second Amendment, after all, and those are dollars someone is going to want to court. There’s a reason Dick’s competitors like Bass Pro Shops haven’t taken a similar position. They understand that doing so would be bad for the bottom line and their long-term health. There’s a reason Dick’s is having to gut its hunting sections in many of its stores. Hunters want nothing to do with them anymore. Those companies understand that gun owners have needs and will shop with businesses that aren’t going to oppose their fundamental human rights. In the coming years, expect to see more and more of this kind of thing as companies may well decide to signal their allegiances politically to gain customers who otherwise might not even think about who supports what rights. Is it sad that things have come to this? A little. But, with the way things are today, it’s also inevitable. Companies that try to remain neutral will be pressured by anti-gunners to pick a side. They seem to believe that the anti-gun position is the default, so we need to counter it by demanding companies consider us as well. In time, maybe the anti-gun zealots will ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • Bangladesh Vows To Push For Gun Control Internationally
    Photo via Pixabay In the wake of the Christchurch massacre, it’s unsurprising that discussions have come around to gun control. It’s inevitable, especially in other countries where people don’t understand the basic concept of firearm ownership as a human right. Because of the scale of the shooting and the politics surrounding it, the Christchurch shooting is getting a lot more international attention than they normally would. For the most part, Americans are unfazed by the anti-gun push from the international community. The pro-Second Amendment advocates generally don’t care what other countries have to say about American gun laws, after all. But we’re in trouble now. It seems Bangladesh has decided to push for greater gun control internationally. Bangladesh will campaign against the widespread use of guns globally, the foreign minister says following the terrorist attacks on New Zealand mosques. “We’ll raise voice for gun control,” AK Abdul Momen said, “In the US, 48 Bangladeshis have been killed in different convenient shops because of the widespread use of guns.” He was speaking at an event marking the birth anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on Sunday in Dhaka. State Minister for Health Dr Murad Hossain was also present as guest at the event organised by Bangladesh Study Center with its president Uttam Kumar Barua in the chair. I hope I don’t seem overly callous when I say this, but I don’t give a damn what Bangladesh thinks. I mean 48 Bangladeshies have been killed in convenience store robberies? Consider the sheer number of convenience stores in this country, that’s a pretty low number, truth be told. Especially since we have to assume this is over a number of years rather than, say, 2019 alone. In other words, this is hardly an epidemic. Of course, there isn’t a lot that Bangladesh can do to force the United States’ hand on this, either. After all, it’s a nation with a population of around half of the U.S.’s and a GDP just a bit higher than Louisianna’s. It’s not likely it has any means to exact any real pressure. Especially if it doesn’t want to risk the $260 million it gets from us each year in foreign aid money. However, there is something to remember about this. Today, it’s Bangladesh. Tomorrow, it may well be a nation that matters to the United States economy, one that might be able to put a hurt on us somehow. That means it’s best that we stay vigilant and make sure our lawmakers know not to worry about foreign countries trying to dictate American policy. Right now, Democrats are screaming about Russian meddling in elections, but they’ll eagerly allow foreign influence into our legislative process at every opportunity. This is the United States of America. We don’t back down from people who want to strip our citizens of their constitutional rights, especially because of the actions of a man who wasn’t even in our country. No, we stand firm, and we stand ready. For a lot of us, the ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • Psychology Today Argues Firearm Training Makes Us Unethical
    AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane The discussion of ethics is fascinating. There are some areas where it’s generally pretty cut and dried, at least for most people. You don’t murder others, for example. But then ethics introduces ideas such as killing baby Hitler, showing that reality can be a bit more complicated than it seems. It’s an interesting topic to delve into, one I hope to spend more time studying at some point. Unfortunately, it seems some think that our efforts to be prepared to defend ourselves makes us somehow less ethical. To the extent that the Gun Culture 2.0 instills in people a willingness to kill, it can be harmful to their character.⁠2 My claim is not that owning and using a gun necessarily compromises character. But if one does so, and adopts much of what Gun Culture 2.0 involves, it can have a negative impact. Let’s look at why. First, a vast majority of us have a deep psychological resistance to killing other people. This is obviously a good feature of human nature. It is grounded in human empathy that recognizes others, including our enemies, as human beings. How we think about, value, and use guns may prevent us from fully appreciating these truths. One way that this can occur is by dehumanizing our enemies. This dehumanization can then overcome our natural resistance to killing another human being.  In military contexts, this can occur in a couple of ways. First, it can be done by conditioning a person to fire a gun at another human being without really thinking about the action that is being performed. This could occur by training soldiers to fire at human-like targets and providing rewards or punishments based on success in such exercises. The hoped-for result is that soldiers will develop quick-shoot reflexes, not thinking about the fact that they are killing another human being at the moment of the conditioned response. This is a sad necessity of war. Many later feel revulsion at what they have done or struggle with it in other ways. … But how, in particular, can this harm character? If our resistance to killing others is weakened by conditioning or seeing them as morally inferior, empathy for them is weakened. Many psychological studies show that empathy is connected to altruistic acts and to acts involving helping others. It also plays a role in preventing aggression and violence. In short, empathy is important for good character. Weakening empathy by dehumanizing others in these ways harms our character. It makes it more difficult to have virtues that are deeply connected with empathy. Compassion, sympathy, and kindness come to mind. If we see others as less than human, this can lead to moral vices, including callousness, cruelty, and malice. Now, the writer does go on to mention that acting in self-defense isn’t evil or proof you lack character, but the groundwork was already laid. You see, he’s not really talking about ethics or character. No, my guess is that he’s trying to stigmatize gun owners, particularly those of us who are most likely to train and prepare for ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • An Open Letter To Lawmakers Inspired By New Zealand Massacre
    AP Photo/Mark Baker Right now, a lot of American lawmakers are watching what happened in New Zealand last week and are licking their chops. They’re convinced this is the time, that this is precisely the moment when they should step up their efforts to enact stricter gun control regulations. To those lawmakers, I present this open letter. Dear Anti-Gun Legislators, I’m willing to concede that perhaps you’re motivated by altruistic desires and not a blind lust for control like many of my friends on this side of the aisle argue. I say this not because I support what you’re doing, but because I’ve seen too many people legitimately driven by what they see as noble intentions. That said, I have to ask what the hell are you thinking right now? Why on Earth would you use New Zealand to push for gun control in this country? I ask because a simple look at the alleged killer’s manifesto makes his goal clear. For him, the act wasn’t about the act itself. He was trying to create a lynchpin event, a single moment that would create far-reaching effects. His goal? He wanted you all to push for more gun control. He wanted you to win. His reason was simple. He knew that we, the American gun owners, have long said that any attempt at gun confiscation would result in civil war. He was taking us at our word. That’s what he wanted. So his goal was to get you to do exactly what some of you are doing, banking on us to do precisely what we’ve warned for years would happen. You are giving him exactly what he wanted. You’re not doing anything to stop this kind of thing. On the contrary, you’re showing that his efforts worked. That only encourages the next nutjob looking to start an ethnically divided civil war. In your efforts to stand on a soapbox made of the bodies of the slain, you didn’t bother to look and see what the ramifications of your actions might be. You were so laser-focused on guns being evil that you never bothered to think that maybe, just maybe, the way to save lives was to not push for gun control. Yes, I know, you don’t agree with me that guns save lives. I get that. But couldn’t you at least accept the fact that if a violent maniac explicitly states he committed an atrocity to get you to do something, it might be a wise idea not to do it? What bothers me the most is knowing that if you manage to get the votes and come for our guns, you’ll blame us for giving the jackwagon what he wanted. You’ll never bother to note your own role in this. You’ll put it all on us, like you always do. Either way, we’re not rolling over. We’re standing firm. It’s not that we’re not sympathetic to what happened in New Zealand, either. We maintain that it’s a problem with people, not guns, and ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand Seems To Embrace Coming Gun Control Regulations
    AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File It’s not surprising, but New Zealand looks to be getting still more gun control. Now, the country already had some pretty tight regulations to start with, but nope. It didn’t stop a terrorist maniac, so now it’s going to impose more regulations on the people of New Zealand. It looks like it’s going to happen. The New Zealand leader’s promise of tightened gun laws in the wake of the Christchurch mosque shootings has been widely welcomed by a stunned population. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said her Cabinet will consider the details of the changes on Monday. She has said options include a ban on private ownership of semi-automatic rifles that were used with devastating effect in Christchurch and a government-funded buyback of newly outlawed guns. While curtailing gun owners’ rights is a political battleground in the United States, Christchurch gun owner Max Roberts, 22, predicted Ardern won’t face serious opposition to her agenda. “There will be no opposition to it. There’s no movement in New Zealand for that. Our media and politics are more left wing,” said Roberts, a carpenter who uses guns for hunting. In other words, New Zealand’s gun owners have been beaten down to the point that they won’t offer up any real opposition. It seems that while many are flocking to gun stores to buy guns in advance of new regulations, they’re also seemingly onboard with more laws. It’s nothing at all like gun owners in the United States. Carol Pomana feels slightly uncomfortable about shopping for guns just days after the Christchurch terrorist attack on two mosques that left 50 people dead and dozens more injured. “In some ways, I feel like it’s inappropriate because of what’s happened,” she said. However, she believes change is coming as the New Zealand Cabinet meets on Monday to discuss tighter gun regulations. “That’s why we’re here today,” she said, after emerging from Christchurch’s Gun City store. “It’s just being realistic.” Even though a crackdown could affect her ability to own guns, she believes stronger laws are justified. “It’s just too easy [to get a licence],” she said. While there are a handful of gun owners here in the States who would take that position, they represent a distinct minority of the gun community. That’s not the case in New Zealand where there appears to be no stiff opposition to the coming gun control laws. And that’s the problem. When there’s no opposition to speak of, gun rights are eroded. New Zealand’s gun laws aren’t responsible for what happened. A demented whackjob who thought the problem with this planet was there were too many non-white people was responsible for what took place. Even though law-abiding gun owners aren’t to blame, they may well end up penalized by the government. This erosion of rights is what happens when you don’t have a strong pro-gun group like the National Rifle Association around. It’s also why anti-gunners in this country are trying so hard to destroy the organization. They know they’ll never be able to enact gun control like New Zealand is looking at without ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • Missouri Lawmaker Offers Bill Requiring AR-15, Handgun Ownership
    AP Photo/Elaine Thompson Anti-gun activists often like to look at the introductory clause of the Second Amendment as some dictate. It says “well regulated militia,” after all. You don’t need a gun if you’re not in the militia! Well, a Missouri lawmaker has offered up a couple of bills that might just shut them up for a little while on that front. Two bills introduced by state Rep. Andrew McDaniel would require residents to purchase firearms while providing $1 million in tax credits on a first-come, first-served basis to residents who fall under the law. The first bill, the McDaniel Second Amendment Act, would require Missouri residents aged 21 or older to purchase a handgun. It also would allot up to $1 million per year in tax credits for residents who purchased weapons to comply with the law. The bill was filed in late February. The second bill, the McDaniel Militia Act, was filed days after the handgun bill and would require Missouri residents aged 18 to 35 to purchase an AR-15. It also would provide a tax credit of up to $1 million per year to incentivize the purchase of weapons. While the bills do not specify any penalties for adults who refuse to comply with the provisions, both stipulate that the Missouri Department of Revenue can “promulgate rules to implement the provisions of this section.” The bills would sunset in six years if not extended by the state legislature. Neither bill has a hope in hell of passing, but they’re amusing. If the militia clause specifies just who can own guns, as many anti-gunners argue, then this should easily take care of that, right? It says that since all able-bodied people are the militia, then they should be all buying AR-15s. Makes sense to me. Again, they’re not going to pass. Even if they did, they’d be virtually unenforceable, must like Kennesaw, Georgia’s ordinance requiring a firearm in every home. That doesn’t matter, though. What matters is that this is a slap in the face of anti-gun activists. It’s a reminder that guns are a key part of our nation and a viable part of our national defense. While our armed forces are our first line of defense, Americans aren’t the kind of people to just let those brave men and women bear the brunt of a homeland invasion on their own. While that’s not particularly likely right now, that’s not to say it never will. Things change, and we’d be stupid to assume we’ll always be a superpower, much less the only one. Sooner or later, we’ll have another rival like the old Soviet Union and that possibility, that someone will come here to start a ruckus, will return. The Missouri bills at least seem to recognize that we need guns not just for our defense, but for our nation’s. That’s something that anti-gunners would do well to remember. Then again, do they even care about our country? The post Missouri Lawmaker Offers Bill Requiring AR-15, Handgun Ownership appeared first on Bearing Arms. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    1 day ago
  • Chris Murphy: Only Killers Would Miss AR-15s
    AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster It’s almost amusing how members of Congress fancy themselves as experts on everything. No matter the topic, they seem to think they know more than everyone else. After all, few of them talk to legitimate experts on the subject before having an opinion. Instead, they reflect whatever opinion their party shares. Take guns, for example. They routinely tell people what they need and don’t need for self-defense, despite having pretty much no knowledge of self-defense. This is the party of Joe “Shoot ’em through the door” Biden, right? The latest example is noted anti-gunner Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), who tweeted this gem over the weekend: Nobody needs an AR-15 to hunt. Nobody needs a semi-automatic rifle to defend their home. But mass shooters NEED these weapons in order to murder as many people as efficiently as possible. And so nobody will miss them when they are illegal – except for the killers. — Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) March 16, 2019 Let’s break this down step by step, shall we? “Nobody needs an AR-15 to hunt.” Well, that depends on what you’re hunting, doesn’t it? The AR-15 is a preferred weapon for hunting animals like coyote because of a quick cycling time and ammo capacity. I sure wouldn’t want to hunt a predatory pack animal that’s generally not traveling alone. Coyotes cost farmers plenty of money each year and are an invasive species in many parts of the country. Further, while I wouldn’t use an AR-15 for hunting hog, I’d use an AR-10, its .308 cousin. Hogs are dangerous, and if you don’t hit it right, they’ll charge you. I’ve known many a hunter who found themselves treed from an angry hog. In a case like that, I want that round capacity and semi-auto action. So yeah, we need them to hunt. “Nobody needs a semi-automatic rifle to defend their home,” Murphy says. Really? We’ve documented several attacks where the homeowner was able to defend their home because they had an AR-15 or similar rifle. Look, is it the best choice for home defense? I generally say it’s not, but it is a viable home defense option. Especially if you find yourself dealing with multiple attackers. Think about the mob that attacked Tucker Carlson’s home, for example. What if they’d have gained entry into the home and attacked Carlson’s wife? An AR-15 would have been ideal in that situation, more so than any handgun. So yeah, we need them for home defense. “But mass shooters NEED these weapons in order to murder as many people as efficiently as possible,” he continues. The most lethal school shooting on American soil is still the Virginia Tech massacre. The killer in that attack used two semi-automatic handguns. The Santa Fe High School shooter from last year used a shotgun and pistol. The Brazilian school shooter used a revolver and archery equipment, for crying out loud. Mass shooters existed before AR-15s were common. They’ll be around even if you get rid of ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Monday, March 18, 2019By Tom Knighton
    2 days ago
  • NY Gun Owners See New Bill As Assault On Their Rights
    AP Photo/Ed Andrieski No one is surprised to hear about a new anti-gun bill out of New York. Governor Andrew Cuomo has made it very clear that he blames the gun industry and gun owners for pretty much every ill in the universe. I’m fairly certain it’s our fault the Arch Duke Ferdinand was killed, thus sparking World War I. However, this latest one is riling a lot of people up even more than usual. A State Assembly bill to ban charity gun raffles is not scheduled for a vote and lacks a Senate companion bill. Yet local gun owners say they are still alarmed by what they see as an all-out assault on their right to own weapons. “I think it stinks,” said Mark E. Fraunfelder, an East Aurora firefighter, at a Saturday gun raffle in Elma. “It’s a great way to raise money, and they’re trying to take it away from us. All the different laws they’ve passed – they’re just trying to take our guns.” “The governor is just running roughshod over the whole state,” echoed fellow attendee Ken King. “He just gets whatever he wants now. … Once the Republicans lost the Senate, he’s got no one challenging him.” These are anxious times for many gun owners in New York State, who say they feel besieged by a ream of new and wide-ranging gun control laws. Since Democrats took control of the State Legislature in the November elections, they have passed bills banning bump stocks, lengthening background check waiting times and requiring gun owners with young children to lock up their firearms. Some 160 other gun control bills also have been introduced this session, including one proposal by Brooklyn Assemblywoman Joanne Simon that would prohibit gun raffles like one held Saturday at Jamison Road Volunteer Fire Company. The organization has held this particular fundraiser twice a year for the past 15 years, said Fire Chief Brian Nolan, and currently makes about $32,000 each year from it. What’s particularly egregious about these is that it shows a lack of understanding of how many gun raffles work. It starts with a licensed gun dealer donating a firearm to a cause. Except, they don’t. They still have to show the transfer on their books, so what they do is they’re going to transfer the rifle to whoever wins the raffle. Technically, the charity doesn’t have ownership of the gun. Donating it so it can then be given to someone else is a straw purchase, after all. After the winner is chosen, the lucky individual then goes through the legally required background check. In other words, the only difference between it and the regular purchase of a firearm is who gets the money. That’s it. There’s nothing nefarious going on here, nothing at all. Despite that, it seems that New York is looking to ban the act. Why? Because anti-gun lawmakers know jack squat about guns or how the gun culture in this country works. They can’t provide instances ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Sunday, March 17, 2019By Tom Knighton
    3 days ago
  • Gun Museum May Have To Essentially Scrap Collection
    Photo via Pixabay In some places, such as Australia, guns aren’t common. For many, the only place they may see a gun in real life is in a museum. Now, one museum is faced with the possibility of having to turn their collection of firearms into little more than scrap. A last haven for guns that would have otherwise been scrapped by authorities, an Australian firearms museum is now confronted with the possibility they may have to mutilate their own collection. The Lithgow Small Arms Factory, which crafted Australian Lee-Enfields from 1912 into the 1950s when they switched to making inch-pattern semi-auto FAL rifles, is an icon in the country. … Now, Lithgow’s collection is the subject of a regulation passed in the Australian state of New South Wales to have museums that store arms make them “permanently inoperable.” Previously, Lithgow and others could just remove the firing pin to deactivate weapons, a temporary move that largely kept the gun intact, just not fireable. What the government wants now is a more drastic method. “Permanent inoperability involves inserting a steel rod down the barrel of the firearm and welding the muzzle and chamber, welding the barrel to the receiver, removing the firing pin and welding the hole, removing all internal springs, welding internal components and welding the bolt, magazine, external hammer and trigger in a fixed position,” Lithgow said. “By doing this, the firearm will be reduced to a metal blob rather than a genuine firearm.” Ah, erasing history in the name of public safety. Australia must be so proud. I mean, these are Enfields. While I have a fondness for the old rifles–I killed my first deer with a Jungle Carbine–they’re not exactly cutting edge technology. These aren’t the guns criminals are going to be looking for, by and large. If anyone is, it’s collectors, not street thugs. At this point, they should be treated more as works of art than deadly weapons. Don’t get me wrong, they can still kill, but my point is that these are about as safe as you’re going to get as they are. Criminals would be forced to steal antiques, replace the firing pin, and still not have a weapon that would be desirable by criminals or those interested in hurting others. Australia doesn’t seem to care, though. Instead, they prefer to see historical weapons turned into gun-shaped slag rather than run the ridiculously small risk that someone might do something. Meanwhile, there are an estimated 260,000 illegal firearms in Australia as of 2016, of which none appear to be museum pieces stolen and turned into functioning guns. Yet this is the world some gun grabbers want for us. They want us to replicate Australia’s draconian and radical gun control scheme, which would then turn even museum pieces into illegal weapons. I don’t know about you, but I’m not about to roll over and let that happen. If for no other reason, my inner historian rebels at such a notion. I’m just resentful as hell that it’s happening ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Saturday, March 16, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Proposed Legislation In Pennsylvania Would Create State Gun Registry
    AP Photo/Marc Levy A new gun control bill proposed to Pennsylvania’s House Judiciary Committee is calling for a thorough firearm registry. The bill, HB768, introduced by Democratic State Rep. Angel Cruz of Philadelphia, would require potential and current gun owners to provide extensive background information and pay an additional fee before being allowed to purchase or possess a firearm. According to NBC-affiliate WJAC-TV, the Firearms Registration Act would require gun owners to register each of their firearms with the Pennsylvania State Police. Gun owners would also be required to undergo a background check, be fingerprinted, and give other personal information such as home and businesses addresses and their social security numbers. Ashley Honea of WJAC explains: The bill states a person would have to obtain a registry certificate from the Pennsylvania State Police in order to possess, transfer, sell, give, or accept a firearm. In order to do so, they must undergo a criminal background check and submit fingerprints along with their social security number, home and business address, telephone number, date of birth, age, sex and citizenship. All of these requirements would be in addition to the state’s current laws to obtain a concealed carry permit and undergo the Pennsylvania Instant Check System, or PIC, which many lawmakers view as faulty. Under current Pennsylvania law, when applying for a concealed carry permit, one must provide two references that are not family members, present a driver’s license or State ID, pay the $20 application fee, and then wait up to 45 days for approval. It costs an additional $20 to renew the concealed carry license (they last only five years). The Firearms Registration Act would require gun owners to register their firearms annually, at the cost of “$10 per firearm each year.”
    The bill does make some exceptions for “antique firearms, collector’s items, and duty weapons,” according to WJAC. But if an applicant pays the non-refundable fee and the PSP denies the application, “they would have ten days to appeal PSP’s decision or they must surrender the gun that was being registered,” Honea writes. Failing to turn over the firearm to law enforcement would result in law enforcement charging the individual with a “summary offense,” which, according to Community Legal Services of Philadelphia, is “the most minor type of criminal offense in Pennsylvania, and is often called a ‘non-traffic citation.’” Summary offenses “can include disorderly conduct, loitering, harassment, and low-level retail theft, among others.” The penalty for such an offense is typically a fine. The post Proposed Legislation In Pennsylvania Would Create State Gun Registry appeared first on Bearing Arms. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, March 15, 2019By Micah Rate
    4 days ago
  • Did Gun Control Groups Buy New Mexican Lawmakers?
    Photo via Pixabay Over and over again, we keep hearing how elected officials who received donations from the National Rifle Association were bought and paid for by the group. It’s virtually impossible to find a gun control advocate who doesn’t seem to believe that the NRA isn’t buying politicians. It seems to be a core part of their identity, a core belief necessary for inclusion into the anti-gun club. With that logic, the recent gun control measures being advanced in New Mexico are clearly the result of politicians being bought and paid for by groups like Everytown, Brady, and Giffords. Everytown for Gun Safety, a national gun-control advocacy group affiliated with former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, contributed nearly $400,000 to New Mexico Democrats and Democrat-friendly political action committees in last year’s election. As the 2019 legislative session nears its end — marked by gun-control legislation that has incensed some New Mexicans, especially in rural areas — these big campaign bucks may play into gun-control opponents’ narrative about an out-of-state billionaire riding roughshod over gun owners by throwing money around. On the other side of this divisive issue, the National Rifle Association spent only a fraction of Everytown’s amount. According to the Institute on Money in Politics, the NRA gave slightly more than $21,000 to New Mexico candidates last year. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham a week ago signed Senate Bill 8, which requires background checks for most firearms purchasers. Supporters, who made the legislation a priority, said the new law will help keep guns out of the hands of people barred from owning firearms. So, a group advocating in favor of certain laws “donates” a huge sum of money to candidates in a state, then those candidates take office and begin acting in accordance with that group’s agenda? According to the anti-gunners, that’s proof they’re bought and paid for. Are they? No. They got the money because they advocated for a similar position to Everytown. The Bloomberg-backed group gave them money because they were already anti-gun. This is just like how the NRA makes donations. Time and time again, anti-gunners talk about purchased politicians. They seem to claim that the only reason anyone opposes gun control is that the NRA gave them money, yet somehow politicians supported by their groups are motivated by pure intentions. They can’t seem to grasp that anyone could disagree with them. So, I’m done arguing with them over it. Instead, I’m going to point out that their logic shows their side is purchasing a whole lot more politicians than the NRA. After all, the trend isn’t just in New Mexico. The NRA was outspent by anti-gunners pretty much everywhere in 2018. As such, groups like Everytown bought more politicians than the NRA supposedly did. Again, it’s not that I believe this. But since some do, I want them to explain to me how their guys can be pure while our side is full of nothing but corrupt politicians looking for a payday. The mental contortions ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, March 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • British MP Thinks All Knives Should Have GPS Trackers To Combat Crime
    Photo via Pixabay I can’t tell you how many British people I’ve had try to lecture me over the superiority of gun control laws in the UK. They say over and over that they don’t have gun crime which proves gun control works. But they typically leave out that their knife crime rate shot through the damn roof. Now, one enterprising Member of Parliament has a plan. A bold, revolutionary plan! One that even Wiley Coyote might approve! Yeah, it is that bad. All knives sold in the United Kingdom should have a GPS tracker attached to them, according to a Conservative MP. Scott Mann, who represents North Cornwall, called for the move on Thursday as a potential means to reduce knife crime. Writing on Twitter, Mr Mann said: “Every knife sold in the UK should have a gps tracker fitted in the handle. It’s time we had a national database like we do with guns. “If you’re carrying it around you had better have a bloody good explanation, obvious exemptions for fishing etc.” Every knife sold in the UK should have a gps tracker fitted in the handle. It’s time we had a national database like we do with guns. If you’re carrying it around you had better have a bloody good explanation, obvious exemptions for fishing etc. — Scott Mann (@scottmann4NC) March 14, 2019 The MP’s suggestion was largely met with disdain by those who read it, with many highlighting simply how many knives it would mean fitting such devices to. One person shared an image of their kitchen drawer and said it alone would require 27 GPS devices inside it for all the knives to be tracked. Another said: “I don’t think the main problem with stabbings is not knowing where the knife is.” This is the society that the sun once never set on? Oh, how the mighty have fallen. The problem with knife crime is that the UK government has made it its mission to neuter its population. They’ve taken away any means the people have to defend themselves, thus making it a playground for every criminal and thug in the country. There’s no concern about being meeting armed resistance, so they can be as brazen as they want. Hell, this is a country that is hesitant to trust their police with guns. That means armed criminals don’t even have to worry about law enforcement stepping in to stop them if they decide they want to hurt someone, for crying out loud. And this doorknob’s suggestion is to slap a GPS tracker into the handle of every knife in the country? First, 1984 was a warning, not an instruction manual. Seeking to know where people’s personal property is on any given moment is the surveillance state at its finest. Second, do you honestly think criminals aren’t going to disable the trackers and carry their knives as they wish? Honestly, British folks, how does a complete and total moron like this get into Parlament? I mean, I know your elections ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, March 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • Portland Parents Sue Schools For Anti-Gun ‘Indoctrination’
    AP Photo/John Raoux Schools are supposed to be places of learning, where facts take precedence over feelings. They’re not supposed to teach you what to think, only how to think. What they’re supposed to be and what they are, however, aren’t exactly similar. Because of that fact, some pro-Second Amendment parents are lashing out at Portland public schools for what they say is an attempt to indoctrinate their children. Four pro-2nd Amendment parents are suing Portland Public Schools (PPS) over gun control rallies. Their lawyer, Multnomah County GOP chair James Buchal, says the district violated parents’ and students’ First Amendment rights by promoting gun control following last year’s school shooting in Parkland, Florida. “It’s wrong for the schools to essentially hijack public resources to push one side of a controversial issue and to misuse children as puppets in their exercise,” said Buchal. He also said PPS used district resources to coordinate with outside activists, helped plan political activity, including walkouts, and claims the schools “indoctrinated” students in the classroom. “It’s a giant scheme of manipulation and it’s not what people want their education dollars spent on,” said Buchal. Unsurprisingly, the school says the lawsuit is baseless. I’m not so sure about that. I can’t speak for Portland, but we saw many schools jumping at the opportunity to not just allow students to stage walkouts, but to seemingly encourage them by giving it a stamp of approval. As Portland tends to be a fairly left-leaning city, I suspect that the support was there then too. There’s another walkout planned for Friday, though students participating in it will reportedly receive an unexcused absence. Unfortunately for the schools, no one is talking about Friday. They’re talking about last year when a coordinated effort took place to have students walk out of every school in the country. Back then, schools were practically rolling out the red carpet so students could walk out of class. They made it very clear that they believed anyone who disagreed was an evil, vile human being. Yes. Teachers. It’s no wonder there’s a lawsuit on this. There needs to be — a lot of them. Hell, if there was one saving grace to those walkouts, it was how they were practically non-existent here in my neck of the woods despite it being a heavily blue congressional district. In a lot of places, though, it was different. They were reportedly backed heavily be school administrations and given the stamp of approval. It’s possible many participating in the walkout weren’t proponents of gun control or even those who just saw it as an excuse to get out of class. Some might have been fearful of repercussions if they didn’t participate. What is that if it’s not an attempt at stifling their First Amendment rights? Couple that with what I’m sure were endless “discussions” on the Second Amendment–discussions that often had the teacher spouting nonsense like it being a collective right–and what do you have other than indoctrination? I can’t say if this happened in Portland. ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, March 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • 49 Dead In New Zealand Mass Shooting
    AP Photo/Mark Baker Some mornings, it just doesn’t pay to get out of bed. This morning was one of them. After all, I get up, fix myself some coffee, and I have a message waiting for me. A friend is telling me I’ll need to get caught up with the news out of New Zealand. After a quick Google search, I find out what he’s talking about. Holy crap. We can file this under the heading of “so mass shootings only happen in the U.S., huh?” A gunman opened fire on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday, killing 49 people in an afternoon slaughter that in part was broadcast live online after the publication of a white supremacist manifesto. Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s prime minister, said that in addition to those killed, 20 were seriously injured, shaking a country with little history of mass shooting in what she called “an extraordinary and unprecedented act of violence.” Awful. Absolutely awful. Currently, four people, including one woman, are in custody and one suspect has been charged. So what motivated these gunmen? Apparently, they’re counting on the anti-gun left to react to this by trying to push still more gun control on us. In his manifesto, he identified himself as a 28-year-old man born in Australia. He listed his white nationalist heroes, described what he said motivated him to attack, and said he purposely used guns to stir discord in the United States around the Second Amendment. Of course, we can point out the failure of gun control in New Zealand, a country that is occasionally referred to as having the “right” approach to mass shootings. Gun owners must be licensed, a process that includes a review of criminal activity and mental health, attendance at a safety program, an explanation of how the gun would be used, a residence visit to ensure secure storage, and testimonials from relatives and friends. As it stands, few are advocating for that level of control here in the United States, which means it’s unlikely they’ll do so now. Thankfully, according to the New Zealand Herald, a local was able to use his own firearm to help stop any further bloodshed. A well known Muslim local chased the shooters and fired two shots at them as they sped off. He was heard telling police officers he was firing in “self defence”. It’s troubling, though, that someone or some group would actively try to spark a civil war in a completely different country. I don’t understand the thinking, and I really don’t want to find the manifesto to figure out what was going through their distorted minds. Civil wars are brutal, bloody affairs where few really win. What comes out of those kinds of conflicts often isn’t anyone’s goal going in. This, folks? This is terrorism, plain and simple, and I’m glad the authorities have them in custody. This is one of those things you just don’t tolerate as a society. If ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Friday, March 15, 2019By Tom Knighton
    4 days ago
  • The Origins Of Second Amendment Sanctuary Communities
    AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File From the first moment I heard of a jurisdiction deciding to become a Second Amendment sanctuary, I couldn’t help myself. I laughed. Not because the idea was ridiculous, but because it was just so beautiful. As progressives lash out, screaming about the rule of law, they forget that the origins of this movement lie with them [emphasis mine]: While the ordinances are not legally binding, Cibola County Sheriff Tony Mace says that, in the case of the universal background check bill, they’re meant to signal sheriffs’ unwillingness to carry out a law that he describes as “unenforceable”—a “feel-good” measure aimed at appeasing the state’s gun-reform activists without doing enough to support sheriffs. Mace, who is also the president of the New Mexico Sheriffs’ Association, says that he came up with the idea for the sanctuary resolutions one day while he was driving home from a particularly frustrating committee meeting for the background check bill, during which he says sheriffs’ concerns had largely fallen on deaf ears. The initiative, he is quick to point out, was directly inspired by the immigration sanctuary movements that have been spearheaded in liberal communities throughout the country, in which certain jurisdictions direct state resources away from enforcing federal immigration laws, or otherwise do not cooperate with federal immigration officers. “There are whole sanctuary county, city, and state movements, and those are essentially saying ‘Hey, we can shield immigrants from the federal law,’” Mace says. “They’re picking and choosing which laws they want to follow as a state, so we’re thinking as a county, why can’t we take this back to our commissioners and say we’re going to draft a resolution that says our counties are Second Amendment sanctuary counties.” Mace is not alone in his efforts: Similar gun-sanctuary movements have arisen in at least four other states with Democratic-controlled legislatures in recent months, including Washington, Nevada, Oregon, and Illinois. In those states, as in New Mexico, the ideological schism between government and local law enforcement highlights a widening gulf between the state’s rural and metropolitan populations. In other words, progressives brought this on themselves. Yes, the rule of law is important. If there’s anything we should support across ideological divides, it should be the rule of law. However, Second Amendment advocates aren’t going to play by a different set of rules than their opponents. You can’t expect us to play by Marquis of Queensbury rules while you’re going full-bore MMA. It’s just not happening. So they came up with this idea of sanctuary cities. Now, people are using that same idea for gun laws, and progressives are now suddenly big fans of the rule of law. They’re screaming and freaking out over these sanctuary counties and furious that sheriffs are saying they won’t enforce these laws, but where was their outrage a few years back? Where was it when these policies were responsible for the murder of Kate Steinle? Back then, it was only silence. Suddenly, federalism was cool, sacrosanct. Communities ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Iowa Legislature Approves Pro-Gun Constitutional Amendment
    AP Photo/Alan Diaz The state of Iowa doesn’t have an amendment protecting the right to keep and bear arms at the state level. In theory, they shouldn’t need one. The Second Amendment should do that all on its own. However, with the Second constantly under attack by anti-gun Democrats in the House, it’s probably a good idea for states to have some protections. Now, Iowa is one step closer to fixing this oversight. Iowa’s Republican-controlled legislature voted Wednesday to approve a resolution to amend the state constitution to declare that the “right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” The amendment requires any gun restrictions must be subject to “strict scrutiny,” the highest standard of judicial review. Critics warned that would mean gun safety laws are more likely to be challenged and possibly overturned in court. I’m pretty sure that’s a feature, not a bug. The truth is, gun laws need to be subject to strict scrutiny. They’re an infringement on the civil liberties of the individual. This isn’t something that should ever be taken lightly. Our Founding Fathers believed our rights were sacred, the natural gift from God that all men had. While they could be uneven in the application of that belief, it doesn’t change what they enshrined in the Constitution. There’s a reason states create these amendments. A person’s right to keep and bear arms is important. It’s a key factor in fighting crime, allowing individuals to have the means to fight back against armed attackers, burglars, or other threats. It’s vital to protect Iowa’s hunting heritage, something that’s coming under attack more and more. It’s a key part of the American way of life. If gun control gets overturned, I’m not going to even bother shrugging and saying, “Oh well.” These are standards that should be in place throughout the nation, at the federal and state level. Every gun control law should fall under strict scrutiny. Why do anti-gunners oppose this? Because they know gun control will fall apart if the judicial branch does as instructed. They know their pet laws won’t hold up because, deep down, they know they’re infringing on our civil rights. They know it, but they don’t want anyone else to know it. They won’t admit it, but why else oppose a constitutional amendment that’s already in place at the federal level? They don’t want judges looking to carefully at these laws because they know they’re unconstitutional. That should tell you a lot. I’m glad to see Iowa take this step. I hope any other state lacking a Second Amendment analog will rectify that very, very soon. Maybe by doing so, they’ll send a signal to certain parties in Washington that gun control isn’t the winning issue in 2020 they want to think it is. Iowa has made their voices loud and clear on that count. It’s time for others to do the same. Of course, that leaves the question of whether anyone will bother to listen ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Gun Control Activists Pressuring Minnesota Lawmakers
    AP Photo/Yakima Herald-Republic, TJ Mullinax, File The House in Minnesota’s legislature has already approved two new gun bills for 2019. However, gun control activists in the state are still less than happy. They want to see more anti-gun action out of lawmakers. So now they’re trying to apply some pressure to get their way. Gun control advocates filled the Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday trying to pressure the Republican-controlled Minnesota Senate to hold hearings on bills regarding background checks and “extreme risk” protection orders. The bills have already passed two House committees. “Our government must do more to protect our children,” said Erin Zamoff of Moms Demand Action Minnesota at a rally with hundreds of supporters of the gun legislation. “We have had enough. It’s time to act.” First Lady Gwen Walz also made her first major appearance at a political rally, warning Republicans that failure to act could be costly in the 2020 elections. “There are seven senators sitting in seats where Tim Walz won and they are Republicans and we are coming,” Walz said to a loud ovation. That may be, but for now? For now, the GOP holds the Senate. I do so love how anti-gunners will come at Republicans and pretend that any gains they had were because of whatever position they hold right now. Walz may have won those districts in spite of his gun stance, not because of it, but they’ll never even think that’s possible. Meanwhile, they think pro-gun lawmakers who were elected in part for their pro-gun views can hold their seats by ignoring their pro-gun constituents. The mental leaps required for this should qualify these people for the Olympics. The truth is that the Senate needs to hold strong and not bow to the pressure. If they’re worried, send it to a committee chaired by the safest Republican possible and let it die there. Then everyone else can pretend they were going to support it, but it never came to a vote. What were they to do? Yes, it’s cowardly, but lawmakers tend to be a cowardly lot much of the time, at least when it comes to protecting their seat. Not that I blame them. Bravery in a lawmaker almost always results in someone losing their job in the next election–precisely what Walz is threatening to happen if they show cowardice. Oh, she thinks they’ll be being brave, but she’s issued a threat. People who bow to threats are rarely brave people. If they capitulate to progressive demands, they’ll have to keep doing it. After all, every demand will come with the exact same threat. There won’t be any attempt to moderate their policies or to work with these Republicans so that they can save face with the folks back home or with their party. No, they’ll become progressives in deed, if not in word. That’s a ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Democrat Openly Backs Operation Choke Point’s Objectives During Hearing
    Operation Choke Point was an Obama-era effort designed to pressure financial institutions to cut off disfavored industries. As you need banks and banking in order to operate, the thinking was that you would “choke off” these industries from existing, all without needing to legislate a thing. It wasn’t exactly the Obama administration’s finest hour. One of the industries Operation Choke Point targeted was the firearms industry. Since Parkland, we’ve seen the financial industry take just those steps, though we have no indication this is still ongoing within federal agencies. However, one lawmaker seems more outraged that it’s not universal than that it happened in the first place. From the NRA-ILA: On Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) unabashedly embraced the tactics behind one of the most shameful policies of the Obama era, openly using the guise of her federal authority to berate and not so subtly threaten a bank for lawfully serving businesses that don’t reflect her political views. … But an oversight hearing by the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday provided one of the clearest and most shocking examples to date of how anti-gun Democrats are now willing to embrace as official policy what was still treated as scandal under the Obama administration. The title of the hearing was “Holding Megabanks Accountable: An Examination of Wells Fargo’s Pattern of Consumer Abuses.” Wells Fargo, not coincidentally, provides banking services to the NRA. The only witness at the four hour plus hearing was Wells Fargo President and Chief Executive Officer Timothy J. Sloan. Mr. Sloan had the unenviable task of serving as punching bag during an extended production of Political Outrage Theatre. The entire premise of the hearing was that Wells Fargo might very well have to endure yet more regulation and oversight – or perhaps be broken up altogether – unless Mr. Sloan provided satisfactory answers to committee members’ questions about the bank and its business practices. Maloney, for her part, excoriated Mr. Sloan and Wells Fargo for refusing to follow the lead of other national banks that had refused or severed business with members of the gun industry that did not “voluntarily” adopt certain gun control “best practices” that exceed the requirements of federal law. These practices include banning long gun purchases by young adults eligible for military service and refusing to recognize the 3-day default transfer option that gun dealers may exercise if the FBI does not complete a background check. They also just happened to mirror policy goals that anti-gun Democrats – a category that includes Maloney herself – have been pursuing through legislation they have not to date been successful in enacting. Maloney, in other words, was not accusing Wells Fargo of having done anything illegal by transacting with members of the firearm industry. Rather, she was criticizing the bank for not imposing anti-gun rules that Congress itself has failed to adopt. Every time I think that we, as a nation, need to put aside the bitter divide we have on so many issues, I find an anti-gun Democrat ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Connecticut Court Rules Remington Can Be Sued Over Sandy Hook
    Once upon a time, a favorite tactic of the anti-gunner was to sue every gun manufacturer for every misuse of a firearm. Someone would get shot with a Smith & Wesson, then Smith & Wesson would have to worry if it was going to get sued. No one accused manufacturers of doing anything illegal, mind you. They just wanted to blame gun companies for making a product that someone later used for a criminal act. As a result, Congress passed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). The idea was to make it so firearm manufacturers didn’t have to deal with lawsuits every time they turned around. It didn’t give them immunity from bad actions, only from malicious and frivolous lawsuits meant to punish them for daring to be in a business anti-gunners didn’t like. Now, thanks to the Connecticut State Supreme Court, it might as well not even exist. Justices issued a 4-3 ruling that reinstated a wrongful death lawsuit and overturned a lower court ruling that the lawsuit was prohibited by a 2005 federal law that shields gun manufacturers from liability in most cases when their products are used in crimes. The plaintiffs include a survivor and relatives of nine people killed in the massacre. They argue the AR-15-style rifle used by shooter [Name Redacted so as to not glorify homicidal maniacs] is too dangerous for the public and Remington glorified the weapon in marketing it to young people. This should be interesting. The ruling just came out, so we’re still lacking in a lot of details at the moment. However, I do expect Remington will take some legal action to kick this over to federal court and potentially up to the Supreme Court. What’s especially glaring to me is that the marketing for the gun is irrelevant. After all, the killer didn’t purchase the gun lawfully in the first place. He murdered his own mother and took her AR-15. Apparently, this marketing to young people actually managed to sell the product to an adult woman well past the age when she could buy any firearm she wanted. Now, the court didn’t make a claim on the validity of the case. It’s not saying that the plaintiffs are right or anything of the sort, only that the lawsuit can proceed. However, the court shouldn’t even have done that. The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act exists explicitly to guard against this kind of malicious litigation by anti-gun activists who urge distraught family members to go on these ill-advised and Quixotic revenge quests against people who did nothing wrong. It would be different if they were arguing that Remington somehow acted irresponsibly in selling a gun to a gun store or distributor. It would be different if someone, anyone, had broken the rules with regard to selling this maniac a gun. But no one did. No one sold him anything. He murdered. His own. Mother. Do they really think someone so filled with rage that he’d do that ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago
  • Anti-Gun Lawmaker In NH Thinks Gun Raffle Is A Personal Threat
    AP Photo/Holly Ramer It wasn’t all that long ago that anti-gun activists in New Hampshire thought lawmakers wearing pearls were mocking them, accusing them of “clutching their pearls” in outrage. While the lawmakers were doing no such thing, I commented at the time that they probably should have. Now, a New Hampshire official is just proving me right as she engages in a bit of pearl-clutching of her own. A poster to promote the raffle of a 22-caliber rifle called the Cherry Frost has Legislative Protective Services investigating the matter as a possible threat to state Rep. Sherry Frost, a vocal Democrat on gun control and other issues that have garnered national attention. … Frost says she’s already been in contact with protective services and has herself contacted the FBI. “My first instinct was that it felt very middle school. The difference in the name of the gun and my name is one letter. Do adults really think this is a coincidence?” she said in an interview on Wednesday. She alluded to near-fatal attacks on lawmakers in recent years as a good reason to be concerned. “In the age of Gabby Gifford and Steve Scalise, and the man who was just arrested a couple weeks ago with an arsenal and a hit list that included lawmakers, public officials are literally as well as figuratively targets, and I think in this environment it is not unreasonable to assume that if someone is naming a gun after me they are making a pretty clear statement about what they want.” When asked why she thinks she would be targeted, Frost said, “Because I’m outspoken. Because I draw attention to these issues.” Oh, for crying out loud. At worst, they’re making a play on Frost’s name to rally the troops. Frankly, I’d see that is pretty smart marketing if she’s that outspoken and reviled by pro-gun activists. But a threat? No wonder she opposes the right to keep and bear arms. She’s jumping at shadows, freaking out over the name of a firearm being raffled, and taking it as a personal threat. Meanwhile, she can’t point to one thing anyone has said that’s an actual threat. This is pearl-clutching at its finest. Frost is using this to draw attention to herself and to try and paint her opposition as dangerous lunatics looking to gun her down for her stance on guns. She’s trying to capitalize on this and do a bit of grandstanding. After all, in the victimhood Olympics, being threatened earns big points, so she’s desperate to try and paint this as a threat. The problem is that in doing so, she betrays her fundamental lack of understanding about firearms. You see, this is a .22 rifle. Yes, it’s made to look like an “evil assault rifle,” but it’s still just a .22. Pro-gun folks know that the .22 is a “plinker.” At best, it’s good for hunting squirrel or rabbit, not politicians. But Frost doesn’t know ... read more
    Source: Bearing ArmsPublished on Thursday, March 14, 2019By Tom Knighton
    5 days ago