31 December 2007

Field & Stream Editor Surprises Many, Heads South

A small magazine in the south may be worth picking up: Garden & Gun. Especially in the next few months. Field & Stream's editor, Sid Evans, is leaving cushy digs in NYC for Charleston, S.C. to head the fledgling publication. Evans is a former junior national skeet-shooting champion and first-rate journalist.

Says Evans' former boss at Sports Illustrated: "Mark Twain would have read this magazine if it had been around. He probably would’ve written for it.”

Any publication that is mixing Palm Beach shopping, promising beagles, oil paintings, and dove hunting in Argentina is worth a look to me.

Intriguing Study From UK Shows Boys Should Be Allowed To Play With Toy Guns

Interesting new study results from Britain, published in the Daily Mail, and the expected response:

"Playing with toy weapons helps the development of young boys, according to new Government advice to nurseries and playgroups. Staff have been told they must resist their "natural instinct" to stop boys using pretend weapons such as guns or light sabres in games with other toddlers. Fantasy play involving weapons and superheroes allows healthy and safe risk-taking and can also make learning more appealing, says the guidance.

"It conflicts with years of "political correctness" in nurseries and playgroups which has led to the banning of toy guns, action hero games and children pretending to fire "guns" using their fingers or Lego bricks. But teachers' leaders insisted last night that guns "symbolise aggression" and said many nurseries and playgroups would ignore the change."

Let's see . . . if you are a private individual and you ignore some government mandate you can be charged with child endangerment and newspapers write about how you are brainwashing your kids. But if you are a school system and you don't like the study, you just ignore it in favor of the politically correct. Not surprising from a country that files charges against private citizens for exercising their right to self defense against violent criminals.

h/t to Glenn Reynolds

NY Times: Bloomberg Moving Closer To Presidential Run

Uh Oh . . .

"Buoyed by the still unsettled field, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is growing increasingly enchanted with the idea of an independent presidential bid, and his aides are aggressively laying the groundwork for him to run."

NOTE: On the Sunday TV news shows over the weekend, one of the talking heads said we should look for at least one, and possibly two independent candidacies next fall for president. My predictions -- Ron Paul and Michael Bloomberg.

After Insulting Iowa Caucus System, Ohio Guv Stumps There For HIllary

UPDATE: 9:16 am -- Mr. Strickland's viewpoint on the Iowa caucus system is getting him lots of press today. CNN has a big story on his controversial remarks, and the Drudge Report has linked to the piece with a photo of Hillary Clinton "appearing" to give the Ohio governor a piece of her mind.

Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland -- a thus-far pro-gun governor, despite his choice of a rabidly anti-gun lieutentant governor -- insulted Iowans last week in an interview by saying the presidential caucus system there makes "no sense." He then showed up this weekend in the Hawkeye State unannounced, to campaign for her. His remarks caused some folks in Camp Clinton to try to put a little distance between Ohio's chief executive and their candidate.

What is the fallout? Strickland might be blowing his chance for the VP slot on a Clinton ticket. Which for Ohioans, as Martha Stewart is fond of saying, is a good thing.

30 December 2007


"After moving to Los Angeles in the early 90s, I watched from the roof of my apartment building as the city burned after the Rodney King verdicts were handed down. I thought what those four cops did to King was shameful. But I didn’t hear an uproar from my friends on the Left when rioters rampaged through the city’s streets, stealing, looting, and destroying property in the name of “no justice, no peace.” And it was impossible not to notice the hypocrisy when prominent Hollywood liberals, who had hosted anti-NRA fundraisers at their homes a week before the riots, were standing in line at shooting ranges the week after it."

-- From a 2006 essay entitled "Why I Left The Left" by Seth Swirsky, a songwriter, author, recording artist and memorabilia collector. His hits include "Love Is A Beautiful Thing" for Al Green, "Tell It To My Heart" and "Prove Your Love" for Taylor Dayne, "Instant Pleasure" for Rufus Wainwright amongst others. His trilogy of bestselling books consisting of his correspondence with baseball players are called "Baseball Letters" (Crown, 1996), "Every Pitcher Tells A Story" (Times Books, 1999) and "Something to Write Home About" (Random House, 2003).

This Month In History -- 2004

From December 2004: While it is an article of faith among gun-control proponents that government restrictions on firearms reduces violence and crime, two U.S. studies could find no evidence to support such a conclusion.

The New York Times (again with a slant all its own) reported that "poor data" had hampered the study and that "a major national effort to improve knowledge about firearms is needed before anyone can judge the effectiveness" of a variety of policies, from gun control to laws allowing people to carry concealed handguns. Hmmm . . .

World Net Daily on Dec. 30, 2004, reported on the National Academy of Sciences, which issued its 328-page report based on 253 journal articles, 99 books, 43 government publications, a survey of 80 different gun-control laws and some of its own independent study. In short, the panel could find NO link between restrictions on gun ownership and lower rates of crime, firearms violence or even accidents with guns. Renowned research scientist John Lott reported on the findings here.

The National Academy of Sciences panel was established during the Clinton administration and all but one of its members were known to favor gun control.

Hillary Clinton and Sock Puppets

You've just got to read it to realize the army of minions Ms. Clinton has "working" on her behalf. In the blogging world, this type of disreputable act is called "sock puppeting." Ann Althouse writes on it best, particularly the obvious little "oops" Team Clinton pulled in New Hampshire.

NY Times Online Staffers Ignorant Of U.S. History

This from Glenn Reynolds. The New York Times, in reviewing Jonah Goldberg's new book, "Liberal Fascism," has some staffers who don't know their history. Goldberg writes of the National Recovery Administration, a federal agency that Franklin Roosevelt created during the Depression to spur industrial production through centralized planning. The agency was declared unconstitutional by the courts in 1935.

But, incredibly, the online wiz kids at the Times linked the initials N.R.A. in the book review to . . . you guessed it -- the National Rifle Association.

Apprently the Times isn't interested in accuracy (a suspicion of many for years). Now some 24 hours after Reynolds first shamed the Times on his Instapundit blog, which is widely read around the world, the Times review still incorrectly links to a list of National Rifle Association news stories.

A freudian slip? Perhaps the editors of the Gray Lady would like the courts to declare the National Rifle Association unconstitutional? We can only speculate . . .

Localized 'Assault Weapon' Hysteria

Say Uncle writes of Knoxville, Tenn. police, who say that people who possess military-style semi-auto rifles are a danger to the public.

NOTE: Interesting. The police everwhere need to get a better handle on just who owns such firearms. I live in the 15th largest U.S. city. In my county alone here in Central Ohio, I know judges, attorneys, police, software developers, contractors, sales people, Realtors, commodities day-traders, even politicians, who own scary-looking black rifles. They are no more criminals than the police chiefs and other politicians who demonize this commonly used competition tool.

29 December 2007

Brit Actor Lawrie Calls Shooting "Terrific Fun"

Incredibly funny British actor Hugh Laurie, who stars as a somewhat reclusive, obnoxious, pill-popping, brilliant diagnostician in the Fox TV medical drama "House," was a guest with Jay Leno the other night. The show was a rerun, of course, due to the writer's strike. I had not seen it before but a conversation with the Tonight Show host was instructive.

Jay asked the actor whether his family had had much chance to visit with him while he films his show in the States. Laurie noted that his two teenage sons, close to 18 years of age, had spent a month in the U.S. this summer with him and that they had done some traveling. Most notable, Laurie said some of the best times they had had here was going to "pistol ranges."

"You can't go to place like that back home," he told Leno. The show host asked how he and his boys liked shooting. Lawrie's response -- "It's terrific fun!"

Numbers of Women Taking Firearms Training Continues To Increase

A report from northern Ohio shows that women continue to increase in number at gun safety classes.

Law Scholars To Discuss 2A At Annual Meeting

Constitutional Law Scholars from law schools across the country will reflect on the Second Amendment and the Supreme Court petition for a writ of certiorari in District of Columbia v. Heller on Saturday, January 5, from 8:30-10:15 a.m. during the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) Annual Meeting in New York, New York. More than 3,500 law faculty are expected to attend.

The panel will be moderated by Mark Tushnet, (Harvard) and features Katherine Darmer, (Chapman); Michael C. Dorf, (Columbia); John C. Eastman, (Chapman) and Eugene Volokh, (UCLA).

Antis: The 2A Is An Individual Right, But . . .

This seems so much like when the antis realized that no one cared any more about gun control. That's when they started describing themselves as gun safety groups. Who can argue with gun safety?

Now, they are starting to acknowledge that the 2A is an individual right, but . . .

"Instead, they now claim that the right, although belonging to individuals, was conditioned on service in an organized militia. With the demise of organized militias, they contend, the right lost any relevance to constitutional adjudication."

Doubletalk. Read it here.

Holiday Traveling Tips

Here are some holiday traveling stories, written in the form of a Top 5 list entitled "You Might Be A Gunnie If . . . "

Take them as tips for what NOT to do. LOL

28 December 2007

From The Mouths of Babes

IMHO, more adults need to know about keeping their fingers off the "bang switch" until ready to fire.

Can You Say Hypocrite?

New York's Mayor Mike never fails to amaze. First he finances this national organization of mayors who say they are targeting illegal guns (they aren't -- they are targeting firearms ownership), then runs sting operations that the BATFE says were illegal, and later sues out-of-state firearms shops for conducting commerce with which he doesn't agree.

NOW HE HAS THE GALL to complain about "meritless securities lawsuits and settlements?"

His objection is that certain lawsuits are driving up the apparent and actual cost of business — and driving away potential investors. He adds that securities litigation reform — including a possible limit on punitive damages — is a "critically important" near term priority. And guess who is joining him in this push? Chuck Schumer, senator from New York.

Well they are the poster boys for frivilous lawsuits. But isn't it odd that frivilous lawsuits are bad . . . unless it is something Mike and Chuck don't like -- such as firearms. Then the lawsuits are good? The New York Sun newspaper isn't amused by their efforts on the securities lawsuit front.

Aussie Paper Observes Huckabee In The Field

UPDATE: Saturday, 12:33 am -- Apparently Mr. Huckabee isn't too discriminating about the people from whom he accepts speaker fees, among them a group pushing to study whether tightening gun control laws will reduce violence. I am hoping that his message was that such laws have never reduced violence, and that overwhelming evidence from our nation's largest cities proves that gun control creates more crime.

GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee took to the field with a dog named "Dude" this week to do some pheasant hunting, and prove to conservative Iowans that he's their kind of guy. The Australian newspaper covered it this way.

Annual New Year's Gun Show In Columbus

This weekend marks the annual New Year's PRO Gun Show in Columbus, Ohio. Admission is $7 for this family-oriented event. But women, kids 13 and under and Peoples Rights Organization Life Members enter free. Its worth checking out.


Rest In Peace Len Herman.

The Brady Bunch And Bullet Control

Jeff Riley from my friends over at Buckeye Firearms Association has an incredibly well-crafted piece on the Brady Campaign's new effort to ban highly popular hunting ammunition. Read it here.

Nice detail, Jeff.

Note: At the correct angle, virtually any bullet can penetrate body armor. So can an arrow for that matter. Will the Bradys be seeking a ban on them as well before long?

h/t to Jeff Soyer

Smithsonian Being Updated; 'The Flag' To Be Better Displayed

The Smithsonian Museum is getting a major upgrade -- a multi-million-dollar renovation courtesy of an $80 million gift to the museum in 2000. Among those displays being overhauled: the very flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to pen the poem that became our national anthem, The Star Spangled Banner.

Hello Kitty Makers Plan Men's Line; Someone Already Beat Them To It

The Japanese makers of the Hello Kitty line of clothing and jewelry for girls and young women have come up with a plan to use the character in a line of retail items targeted to men.

If they want to jump start their program, they need to take an accessory lesson here.

"While she doesn’t necessarily destroy civilization with bullets and bombs, she does do it with a overwhelming blanket of cuteness that may be much more psychologically damaging to the world."

Of course men might think its a bit too over the top. There is also this clothing line from which they can take inspiration. Says one person in a comment found on another site, "What's next? My Little Carbine?" The twisted humor part of me would vote YES.

NOTE: Before you go out to buy one for the wife or to put away in the safe for your daughter, the "accessory" I pointed to above is from a parody site. Still . . .

27 December 2007

Bloomberg's Anti-Gun Crusade Runs Ads in NH, Iowa

I don't know whether Mike Bloomberg is trying to soften up Iowa and New Hampshire voters for an 11th hour entry into the presidential fray, or whether he's just exporting more New York-style anti-gun rhetoric. Either way, his Mayors Against Illegal Guns organization ran television ads in those two states, reminding voters and candidates of its questionable message.

Yet More Problems Sticking To BATFE Director Nominee

"The judge, in sentencing a contractor for fraud in relation to the flawed "Big Dig" tunnel, notes that Sullivan's U.S. Attorney's office failed to investigate just how much the guy had swindled from the government, even though it had two people who had turned state's evidence, and the defendant had boasted of ripping off the government fo 18 years."

The judge in the above noted case in Boston wonders why there were so few prosecutions despite a mountain of evidence.

More Senators Ask Interior Dept. To Allow Carry In National Parks

The number of U.S. senators asking the Interior Department to change its rules and allow the carrying of firearms in national parks is up to 47.

NOTE: I , along with many others, have long suspected that numerous visitors over the years have carried illegally in our national parks. For it is well known that these are places populated by both two- and four-legged predators.

Apparently Wii, Other New Games DO Provide A Workout

I have criticized the Wii toys and others for attempting to substitute sitting on front of a TV screen and mimicking some athletic moves for getting outdoors and actually playing. Apparently you have to "work" to play these games well.

I am told a nephew of mine worked up a decent sweat on Christmas day "playing" tennis on a Wii system. Maybe it WILL make kids get some exercise, after all!

Still, there is no substitute for playing out-of-doors.

Police Deaths Up in 2007; Car Crashes Leading Cause

U.S. police fatalities jumped in 2007, according to preliminary data released jointly by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and Concerns of Police Survivors.

ACLU Still Can't Count To 10

The PRO-Gun Progressive notes that the latest hardcopy newsletter from the ACLU included no mention of the Heller/Parker case now before the U.S. Supreme Court. Surprised? I'm not.

I took a look this morning at the American Civil Liberties Union website. It has been awhile since I had paid a visit and I was not surprised at what I found. A lot of stories and updates on government wiretapping, censorship of gay students by high schools, employer sanctions, restrictions on muslin scholar's travel to the U.S., war on terror detainee interrogations, capital punishment in New Jersey, women confined in men's prisons, crack sentencing rules, challenges to intelligent design, domestic surveillance, and more. Most involved cases or events leading to important civil liberties issues worthy of discussion. But I could find nothing on the District of Columbia v. Heller appeal (formerly Parker v. District of Columbia).

Plus, if you look along the right side of the organization's home page, you see the issues it covers: criminal justice, death penalty, disability rights, drug policy, free speech, HIV/AIDS, human rights, immigrants' rights, lesbian and gay rights, national security, police practices, prisoners' rights, privacy and technology, racial justice, religion and belief, reproductive freedom, rights of the poor, safe and free, stand up/youth, voting rights, and finally, women's rights. There is also a big button along the left side that enables you to "Donate now: Help protect our rights." But what "issue" is missing?

The closest category on the firearms and safety issue seemed to me to be the "safe and free" section. I clicked there and was directed to information on habeus corpus, spying, secrecy and torture. In the police section there were mostly stories and case references about police misconduct, wrongful entries into private homes by law enforcement -- again, all important stuff. But . . . the ONLY reference I found to firearms was a question submitted to the organization, and its response back in 2002. The question was: "Why doesn't the ACLU support an individual's unlimited right to keep and bear arms?" Here is the ACLU's reply in 2002.

Specifically, the organization is very direct in its belief of the collective rights theory of the Second Amendment. But even more interesting is the following statement: "The national ACLU is neutral on the issue of gun control. We believe that the Constitution contains no barriers to reasonable regulations of gun ownership. If we can license and register cars, we can license and register guns." If the ACLU is neutral, wouldn't it have more information on its website just to keep its members and supporters informed from even a slightly imbalanced perspective? The ACLU virtually ignores the 2A.

Sadly, the ACLU still does not want to discuss this. Moreover, the organization currently is acting like the stereotypical ostrich with its head in the sand, hoping that by ignoring this pivotal civil rights case (Heller v. D.C.) that somehow it will go away.

I have spoken on this subject before, but I will repeat a conversation I had with an ACLU rep in Ohio some years ago. I asked what would happen if things got so bad in this nation, that rights were so restricted by government . . . what would happen. His response, ultimately, after some prodding, was that the people of this country would have no choice to rise up and take back their government. I asked how? He said through the courts. I asked him whether the courts might someday become such a poisoned atmosphere that people could not get justice, that the courts might be a rubber stamp for government. He said that is a huge fear of his. I again asked what the people would possibly be able to do at this point. He said this time they would have no choice but to rise up and take back their nation by force. At this point I asked the question I was leading to:

If the people have no means to legally own a firearm, because organizations like the ACLU argue against the individual right to bear arms, what will the people use to take back their nation, sticks and stones? How will those work against the government's M-16s and tanks?

For that, the ACLU employee had no answer. Just a momentary blank stare into space. He had never conceived this possibility. He quickly recovered and blew off the possibility. "It will never get that bad," he replied. Ahhh, but earlier in the conversation, he had acknowleged it was his biggest fear.

He understood that day, for the first time I believe, about unintended consequences.

UK: Rules Say Homes Must Be Safe For Robbers

"A woman who suffered a break-in robbery in which she lost some valuable antiques worth "thousands" has been told she could face a significant liability if she beefs up her home's security, and a returning robber would be injured.

" 'If I have got to live behind locked doors for the rest of my life, I hope the rest of my life isn't very long,' the woman, who asked to remain anonymous, told the Rugby, England, Advertiser."


26 December 2007

Ed Publication Says Problem Of Messed Up Kids Who Terrorize Schools Not About Class Size

Can you guess what they are convinced the problem is? I'll give you three guesses.

Of course. Guns. You got it on the first try. Yes, once more it is convenient to blame an inanimate object for the criminal actions of a few. Here is what a contributor to Education Week had to say:

"Blaming schools and school size for the gun violence that occurs within them is not only unfair and unreasonable, but it also distracts attention from the cause that those who care about school safety and youth violence should be fighting for: getting guns off our nation’s streets and out of the hands of our nation’s youths . . ."

". . . Using tragedies like Columbine or SuccessTech to promote specific school reforms shifts attention away from the issue of gun control, and mutes what should be national outrage directed at those who oppose even the mildest measures intended to limit access to firearms."

Folks, the large urban Ohio high school I attended in the late 1970s had an enrollment of more than 1,700 students. We had no such incidents like this and firearms were FAR MORE READILY AVAILABLE than they today. Guns were sold openly in hardware stores, Abercrombie and Fitch stores, Western Auto and Sears stores. There were gun stores virtually EVERYWHERE. There was no paperwork -- just cash and carry in all of these retail outlets. In addition, young people occasionally carried firearms on buses to school because they planned to hunt or target shoot when school was over. I lived well within the city and I can remember into my junior high days people walking the railroad tracks behind my parents' home hunting pheasants and rabbits.

To have the education community try to redirect blame and point toward firearms is not unexpected. In the case of the boys at Columbine, the evidence has long been available that many warning signs were ignored by parents and administrators, alike. Was it building size? No, and on that point I totally agree with the author of the piece in Education Week. But she neglects to talk about other influences -- violent video games, perhaps even the admitted over-medication of our young people in order to keep their hyperactivity "even."

She does address bullying, but in my humble opinion, some school administrations are good at preaching how bullying is bad. But when push comes to shove, and someone complains about bullying, administrators and guidance counselors dismiss it and tell the kids to "get along." No, the author's real bugaboo is guns. She's incensed that people are pointing out real problems in education today. She's embarrassed that problems continue to be laid bare. Much improvement has been made, and there are teachers and administrators who take change seriously. They want to make the schools better, so that they can serve their students more readily.

Yet, the fact that our public education system still needs further reform is well known. Worse, improvement and reform is continually pushed back by some in the education community. All in the name of keeping the status quo. Hanging onto power.

For Professor Kafka of Baruch College in New York, contrary to her assertion, it is far easier to scapegoat firearms than to address real problems in public education.

Tracking Firearms Owners Who Gave Up On New Orleans

The NRA has hired private investigators in an attempt to track down firearms owners who fled New Orleans for work and new lives in other parts of the nation following Hurricane Katrina.

The NRA says the city seized more than 1,000 guns that were not part of any criminal investigation after the hurricane. Police have said they took only guns that had been stolen or found in abandoned homes. In April 2006, police made about 700 firearms available for owners to claim if they could present a bill of sale or an affidavit with the weapon's serial number.In court papers filed Monday, NRA attorneys say investigators have found few of the guns' owners because the storm has scattered so many residents.

In the lawsuit, which is set for trial in February, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation claim the city violated gun owners' right to bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The lawsuit says the gun owners were left "at the mercy of roving gangs, home invaders, and other criminals" after Katrina.

NOTE: The City of New Orleans has been deceitful in virtually every excuse they have given for: a) illegally seizing lawfully owned firearms; b) claiming they didn't take any firearms; c) claiming they did seize firearms but did not possess them; d) admitting they possessed seized firearms but arguing why they should not be returned to their rightful owners; and e) making owners jump through a myriad of hoops to regain custody of private property that was unlawfully seized in the first place. The judge would do well to grant the delay so that victims can be located.

Remington To Acquire Marlin

Remington Arms announced today it will acquire Marlin Firearms Co.

Christmas And Daisy

I was surfing the web tonight and while reading some newer posts at The Ten Ring I came across another old Daisy poster. Some of these classic pieces of Americana "art" still speak loudly of a day when the entire family enjoyed shooting. When people didn't fear simple tools. There was respect for firearms, and for each other.

It doesn't speak loudly . . . it speaks volumes! Enjoy.

Gun Rights Veteran John Hosford Passes

John Hosford never missed a Gun Rights Policy Conference. Closer to home for myself and others, he brought his grassroots outreach/organizing skills to Columbus back in the late 1980s when Peoples Rights Organization was forming. He was the Columbus group's first connection to a national organization on the firearms rights scene.

While the National Rifle Association has always been the big dog when it comes to firearms rights, the Citizens Committee For The Right To Keep and Bear Arms was the best partner for statewide grassroots rights organizations. And right up until his retirement, for grassroots activists there was no better friend than John Hosford.

He passed away in in sleep on Christmas Eve while visiting family in Washington state. PRO has included John's obituary on its pages this evening.

If 'Sportsmen' Supported Anti-Gun Prez Hopefuls

From Gun Law News:

"I present for your consideration Sportsmen for Clinton? And just to cover other bases, Sportsmen for Obama? and Sportsmen for Edwards? The next presidential election will be especially important in case the Democrats retain control of the House and Senate."

And some people suggest firearms advocates have no sense of humor? HA! I don't care what anyone says, that's funny! (apologies to Larry The Cable Guy)

A Red Ryder BB Gun Was Once Considered A Most Wholesome Christmas Present

A piece from 2004, but still a well written look at how running around outside firmly clutching a Red Ryder has been supplanted by staying indoors, staring mindlessly with glazed eyes into a TV screen -- joystick in hand.

"Second only to 'It's A Wonderful Life' on TV Guide's list of the greatest holiday films of all time, 'A Christmas Story' (1983) is an amalgam of warm-heartedly cynical vignettes hung on the through line of 9-year-old Ralphie Parker's quest for a Red Ryder airgun . . ."

". . .Receiving an air rifle no longer represents a right of passage for a 10- or 11-year-old child," Ford explained. "Some of the antigun sentiment that comes and goes in this country has something to do with it. And then, of course, there are so many other things for kids to do these days. "When I was a kid, we all had our airguns that we carried around. They were a part of us most of the time, and we would never think to do anything with them that would hurt another person. It's a different story these days. "Now there's an awful lot of kids sitting in front of the television with a joystick in their hands," Ford continued.

A DC 'Pullout?'

I haven't run the numbers myself, but I saw this intriguing comment to a story in the Lower Hudson Online edition of the New York Journal-News.

"Consider this: There have been an average of 160,000 troops in Iraq during the last 22 months, which has a firearm death rate of 60 per 100,000. The rate in Washington D.C. is 80.6 per 100,000. That means that you are 25% more likely to be shot and killed in our Nation's Capitol, which has some of the strictest gun control laws in the nation, than you are in Iraq. Conclusion: We should immediately pull out of Washington, D.C."

An interesting concept.

Latest On BATFE Director Appointment

The push to block Mike Sullivan's permanent appointment as head of BATFE is heating up. David Codrea has had some interesting correspondence on the subject.

Bucknell, UNC Profs Square Off On CCW, Rights

A Bucknell University professor criticizes a presentation by a University of North Carolina criminology prof, who had recently spoken at Bucknell. Interestingly, the Bucknell prof "could not attend" the presentation he critiqued.

From the UNC prof's perspective, after the fact:

"As I said in my talk at Bucknell, we must empower the innocent citizen with a CCW that will help him to protect both self and others. But, perhaps I should have said “her.” Some “men” are simply not up to the task and, hence, too cowardly to even discuss the issue with those willing to return fire, intellectually speaking."

25 December 2007

Found Beneath The Tree

Two favorites from under the Christmas tree this morning:

1) A book from Harvard Business Press on one of my favorite retailers, L.L. Bean, including reflections on the life of its founder, Leon Leonwood Green.

2) Fun with nerf guns.

24 December 2007

Books, A Fireplace and Christmas

I've just finished "Gentlemen's Blood: A History of Dueling" by Barbara Holland. I started it while on a long weekend getaway to Middle Bass Island in Lake Erie. A very well written look at how disagreements about people, money, politics, women, land, etc. were settled "with honor" in North America and across Europe. If you think today's mood in Congress is foul, and that there is too much bickering . . . imagine the days when disagreements between politicians were settled in a glade outside of D.C.

Here are some snippets: The Europeans thought Americans were barbarians for using firearms in duels. They would rather run opponent through with a sword -- more civilized that way. The French would find a way to settle honor without hurting each other (sometimes shooting wide of the mark; just standing there showed you had courage and honor), while the Germans believed that the "mark" of a gentleman was a deep scar across the side of one's face. And in many cases, both in America and in Europe, intentionally avoiding a duel (if called out) could result in losing your land, your officer's post in the military, your ability to get a loan, and your status among your peers. A fascinating read and I highly recommend it.

The reading table remains stacked high. I am still working on "State of Emergency" by Patrick Buchanan and just cracked open "The Vision of the Anointed" by Thomas Sowell. The fireplace is going nicely (with wood, not that wussy gas log stuff or simulated electric flames) and I've got a glass of wine within reach. The tree's white lights are twinkling and gifts are wrapped. Perfect. Now if it were only snowing like hell outside.

It is time to reflect. It is time to relax. It is time to look ahead. I wish you good tidings at this most special time of year. Merry Christmas.

Quote Of The Day

For today's quote I turn to a post by Yuri Orlov, who has found a statement made during the warlord days in fuedal Japan. It is by a shogun named Toyotomi Hideyshi.

The statement allegedly was written in 1558, but it has chilling application today.

Kucinich Once Carried A Gun; No Wait, Now He Didn't

U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (or his staff) is cooking up some revisionist history regarding his personal firearms use.

For my Ohio readers, and of course, for the former Cleveland mayor's loyal followers.

Of Flintlocks, Quill Pens and Background Checks

From a letter to the editor in the Indianapolis Star:

"In counter, I'd like to suggest a five-day waiting period on publication, while the government background checks facts for accuracy, after which time Hammerle can spout off in a paper he prints with lead type and distributed on horseback, just as our Founders intended."

Mr. Williamson makes a good point, though it is one with which I disagree as a former journalist. Still, it is a compelling argument. And for good measure, I will throw in that news stories should be composed with quill pens because the Framers never envisioned CRTs and laptop computers for writing. Nor could they have ever seen a day when news organizations would spray opinion (aka speech) at an unsuspecting public with rapid-fire web sites and e-mails.

And before anyone suggests that newspapers are not as dangerous as lawfully owned firearms, I would remind you . . . . newspapers have enflamed wars, if not started them entirely.

Ohio's Space Takes On BATFE Bureaucracy

Ohio representative Zack Space is making news by introducing legislation in Congress to help lawful firearms owners in the U.S. who have been victims of the excessive bureaucracy of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE). Democrat Space introduced the legislation, HR4900, with republican Steve King of Iowa.

From the news release Space's office issued:

"This bill makes corrections to the BATFE’s jurisdiction to help ensure that overzealous bureaucrats can’t go after gun purchasers. BATFE regulations now are so restrictive that if a person writes “y” instead of “yes” on a gun purchase form, the application is frequently rejected.

"Space’s bill also permanently repeals a federal gun tax that can be imposed when a purchaser goes through a background check."

23 December 2007

Alaska Women Jog Into Area Known For Wolf Attacks (Armed Only With Pepper Spray)

While this nearly became a leading entry for the 2007 Darwin Awards, I am not even sure where to start with this story from Elmendorf, Alaska.

Initial thoughts:
-- Intelligent people do not knowingly go into a highly dangerous area without good reason. A jog with friends and your dogs is not a good reason.
-- Intelligent people carry firearms for protection against both two-legged and four-legged predators.

NOTE: I am amused at how the one woman surely knows how to "rainbow" her pepper spray, as she mentions twice.

More From GOA On HR2640

I have said in earlier posts that parts of this legislation just plain mystify me. The part that is most disturbing is the suggestion that a physician can ban people from owning firearms. The bill is now headed to President Bush for signature. GOA has been fighting this bill since its inception, though the NRA appears to be going along to get along.

"What the bill does is to lock in – statutorily – huge numbers of additional law-abiding Americans who will now be denied the right to own a firearm," Pratt's organization said. "And then it 'graciously' allows these newly disarmed Americans to spend tens of thousands of dollars for a long-shot change to regain the gun rights this very bill takes away from them." -- Gun Owners of America, in an open letter to NRA members.

Even When Evidence Stares Them In The Face, Some Media Types Cannot Admit The Truth

Even as people throughout the Unites States were calling Jeanne Assam a hero for saving hundreds of lives at her Colorado church earlier this month using her personal sidearm, an MSNBC anchor was in denial during a live broadcast as she provided follow-up coverage.

Archie Bunker Was Way Ahead Of His Time Regarding Airline Safety

In a classic clip from the 1970s television series, All In The Family, head-of-household Archie Bunker tapes a guest opinion piece on the local TV news. He is particularly concerned about gun control and has a novel approach to preventing airline hijackings.

Seeing this again some 30 years after it originally aired cracked me up! Interestingly, some of these ideas surfaced in the wake of the 9-11 terrorist attacks on the United States. Who knew the squire of Howser Street was so far ahead of his time?

h/t to Girl 600

Green Bay CSI

Ummm . . . does anyone else have a problem with this besides me?

From Wisconsin, with love . . .

Daddy's Hunting Rifle Is Next On 'Their' Ban List

Did you know that your dad's bolt-action rifle(which may now may reside in your safe) is currently referred to by the grabbers as "an intermediate sniper rifle?" Really! It's not new, but average gun owners are only now waking up to what pro-safety advocates have been yelling about for years -- that the anti-gun people are not going to stop at scary-looking competition rifles or handguns.

For a long time now, Oleg Volk has put together great images with messages that are right-on. He has hit another home run with the image and message here. I hope you will take a moment to look at his site.

We have been talking about this for more than a year now, and finally more people are listening. I had a conversation with some golks at a gun show in Central Ohio about three months ago and they had never heard the term "intermediate sniper rifle" mentioned. That would probably be because they are not anti-gun politicians, or do not subscribe to anti-gun websites. I believe it is better to know thine enemy. Anyway, I received an email from one young lady from the gun show a few weeks ago thanking me for pointing out the word play that is being used against lawful firearms ownership. More recently, one of the guys at Ohioans for Concealed Carry wrote a good piece on the subject, tied in with bizarre accusations by a New York anti-hunting group that the Omaha mall shooter used hunting skills to pick out targets. The group blames the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission for the mall tragedy.

There seems to be no end to how far these people will go to try and connect dots that have nothing in common with each other. One person is responsible for the tragedy that day in Omaha -- the shooter. Not gun owners, not guns, but the murderer.

A word of advice for the New Year . . . keep your powder close (and dry) and keep your daddy's hunting rifle even closer.

22 December 2007

Some Saturday Fun

My new online buddy Breda, up in Northeast Ohio, is grinning today from ear to ear thinking how she made Sarah Brady cry.

FBI Readying Giant Biometrics Database

The next time you are asked to give your fingerprints to the school so you can help coach a league team, or just volunteer to serve pizza at a festival, and are innocently told by the powers that be it is no big deal, think about where all your personal biometric data is now destined.

Do You Tire Of The Nanny State?

This is has nothing to do with firearms . . . well, if one thinks long enough one could make some connections about the do-gooders ultimately fearing fire in all its shapes (guns included). Still, it just struck me at the right time as we constantly battle the Nanny State mentality.

The bottom line: Roberta X has the right idea about the latest "ban" facing the American people.

Holiday Messages From The Presidential Hopefuls

Much has been said about the holiday video messages taped by most of the candidates running for president as we move into the 2008 election year. Everything from motives, to staging, to looks to message. It's probably better to not listen to the gatekeepers who try to analyze every nuance of a commercial (this author included), but to make up your own mind . . .

(In no particular order -- those which I do not yet have, I will post as soon as I find the URL)

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Barack Obama
John Edwards

Bill Richardson
Dennis Kucinich
Chris Dodd
Joe Biden

Fred Thompson
Mike Huckabee
Ron Paul
Mitt Romney
John McCain
Rudy Giuliani (fruitcake)
Rudy Giuliani (candidates)

When Knives Go Berserk

A woman allegedly stabbed her husband with a kitchen knife following an argument that began when she accused him of opening a Christmas present early, authorities in Wyoming said Friday.

It is time to ban knives, which are designed solely to destroy tissue and kill people . . .

21 December 2007

Killings At Gun-Free Virginia Tech Voted Most Important News Story of 2007

The massacre of 32 people at Virginia Tech -- a campus where officials had banned the carry of self-defense firearms by law-abiding students, faculty and staff -- by a mentally disturbed student was chosen the top story of 2007 by U.S. editors and news directors in The Associated Press' annual vote.

When Axes Go Berserk

A 52-year-old Wauzeka, Wisc. man has been arrested after he attacked Crawford County sheriff's deputies with an ax and then barricaded himself in his home.

Ban the axes, which are designed solely to destroy tissue and kill people . . .

Interior Appropriations Bill Omits Hunting Ban

Federal lawmakers have protected polar bear hunting, but a looming decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service could eliminate the hunt and cripple conservation efforts, according to the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance. Language that would have prohibited American big game hunters from importing Canadian polar bear trophies was excluded from the 2008 Omnibus Appropriations Bill, which passed December 19. The anti-hunting language had been included in the Senate version of the bill, but sportsmen’s grassroots action in June kept it out of the House adaptation.

USSA worked with the National Rifle Association to convince lawmakers to omit the anti-hunting language from the omnibus bill. Sen. Wayne Allard, R-CO; Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-CA; and Sen. Ted Stevens, R-AK played vital roles in protecting the hunt. The USSA also credits Rep. Ron Kind, D-WI; Rep. Don Young, R-AK; Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-KS; and Rep. Dan Boren, D-OK for their aid in defeating the anti-hunting amendment that appeared in the House version of the bill this summer.

“Congressional leadership got the message that polar bear conservation will collapse if baseless hunting bans are established,” said Rick Story, USSA senior vice president. “Now we must hope that the Fish and Wildlife Service is on the same page and does not hogtie polar bear conservation by listing the animals as threatened.” The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) will make a final determination in January 2008 whether to list the polar bear as a federally-threatened species. The proposal to list the animals is a political gesture that was put forth after environmental groups threatened to sue the government.

Science shows that polar bear populations are at historic highs and that there are no imminent threats to the healthy, huntable populations. The listing will put effective polar bear conservation in jeopardy, but the loss of Arctic sea ice, which the service identifies as the formidable threat to the bear populations, will not be addressed.

American sportsmen comprise approximately 90 percent of the foreign hunting clientele in Canada, annually pouring millions of dollars into polar bear conservation and management, not to mention the financial benefits to the local communities. American hunters are the primary source of essential funding for conservation and research that allows for continued success of the populations.

Trama Surgeons Either Plagiarize Each Other, Or 'Receive' Identical Scripts

A Nebraska trama doc who treated victims of the mall shooting in Omaha is speaking out and saying he believes so-called "assault weapons" should be banned. Here is his quote from the news conference:

"These are...weapons that are only meant to destroy tissue and kill people."

Now, when I read this I had a sense of deja vu. I felt sure I had heard these words before, or something close. Going back through more than a decade of notes, testimony, videotape and with the help of a little online research, I found the answer. It turns out there is a doctor in Ohio, an emergency physician (coincidentally) at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus. Dr. Jonathan I. Groner is director of the trauma program at Children’s as well as a pediatric surgeon there. Moreover (wait for it) . . . he is a board member of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence (OCAGV) -- the front group in the Buckeye State for the national Ceasefire/Brady Campaign (formerly HCI)/Violence Policy Center cabal. Bingo!

Dr. Groner used nearly identical wording to that of Nebraska's Dr. Joseph Stothert when he came in to testify before Columbus City Council in 2005. Then, the city prepared to launch its third attempt to ban competition rifles there. The first two laws passed in the late 1980s were overturned in federal court as a result of aggressive lawsuits filed by Peoples Rights Organization. Passage of a new ban two years ago was rendered moot when the Ohio General Assembly in 2006 smartly passed citizen safety legislation making firearms laws the sole responsibility of state lawmakers. This finally eliminated the abuse of home rule priveleges that had been exploited by Ohio municipalities to curry favor with contributors or push political agendas. Many Ohio cities had passed non-sensical gun bans and registration programs that some of their own city attorneys admitted would never have an impact on crime.

Anyway, at that time, pro-self-defense and shooting sports supporters -- who made up the majority of people attending hearings at Columbus City Hall -- had in their camp a former director of the Columbus Health Department and professor of public health policy at Ohio State. He testified eloquently about such bans being meaningless to improving public health, as evidenced by a number of national studies, including one conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. To combat this compelling argument, the City of Columbus (urged on by OCAGV and San Francisco's Legal Community Against Violence (LCAV) brought in Dr. Groner. Worse, city officials and gun grabber organizers embarrassed the good doctor (in my humble opinion) by urging him to wear his white lab coat during his testimony -- attempting to create the illusion that Groner was the only true health professional testifying on this important matter. The moment I saw him approach the lecturn, clad in resplendent white, I knew the purpose of this photo-op . . . and I felt sorry for him at the same time. Doctors do not wear their whites out of the hospital, or office. It just isn't done.

Groner spoke that day in 2005, and used virtually those same words we just heard uttered in Nebraska; that scaring looking rifles are only meant to destroy tissue and kill people. He added phrases about such firearms also being designed to efficiently kill large numbers of people. He needs to stick to medicine, or take both a ballistics and gunsmithing class so he no longer utters such nonsense. Anyone who has taken just a moment to learn about this tool can easily find evidence to the contrary. For example, even the most benign looking single-shot bolt-action centerfire rifle is far more powerful than a competition rifle. And military firearms are designed to limit tissue dissruption, to wound rather than kill. Why? Because an enemy force must expend more resources to take care of its wounded. But the average American doesn't know this, a fact well exploited by the antis. But I digress.

Here is a challenge I am considering taking on when I find some time: If I look hard enough, I bet I will find the same language used by yet one or two more emergency physicians somewhere else in the nation on this same issue . . . What are the odds? I may not have been the first to notice this. Perhaps others have written on it. But it is insulting to the intellect to see the media and anti self-defense politicians swoon over Dr. Stothert's comments this week, no matter how sincere he may be personally. The coverage of his remarks was treated as if he arrived at a conclusion that no one before had ever considered.

Folks, what I am getting at is that these people are ALL working from the SAME playbook, and reading from the SAME scripts. Got it? It's not new to me, or others who follow the American Arms Wars, but it should be an education to those who are finally wondering about their personal safety.

More importantly, it should raise additional questions among thinking people about those who would deny Americans their basic human right of self defense in the face of exponential evidence of just how dangerous our "gun-free" malls, churches and college campuses really are.

Hunting, Fishing Adds $1.9B To Ohio Economy

Calling Ohio's 1.5 million hunters and anglers among the most prominent and influential of all demographic groups, a report by the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation says outdoor enthusiasts spend more than $1.9 billion a year on hunting and fishing. That dollar outlay puts Ohio ninth among the 50 states.

Surprised? I'm not. Hunters and anglers were the first -- and remain today THE MOST prominent -- conservationists in this nation.

Rest In Peace

Ohio's last World War 1 veteran has died at age 109.

Thank you for your service, Sir, however brief.

Cleveland Paper Headlines Terribly Misleading, Says BFA

Jim Irvine at Buckeye Firearms Association has penned another great piece, once again zeroing in on a recent factually challenged front page of the Plain Dealer newspaper in Cleveland. It's too bad, too. I have several great friends who are solid reporters and editors at that paper covering sports and the arts.

But the metro desk, with Cleveland Mayor Jackson as its apparent "guest editor" seems not to know the meaning of "error of fact" or has not read (at least recently) the Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics.

More On NICS Bill

As I wrote yesterday, the new NICS bill has ruffled feathers of pretty much everyone. Here is the latest:

From anti-gunner NY Rep. Carolyn McCarthy . . . (She is taking credit for the bill)

From anti-gun VPC chief Josh Sugarmann . . . (He's disgusted by the bill)

From Gun Owners of America . . . (They hate the bill)

There are parts of the "NICS Improvement Act" that just plain mystify me. The measure will soon be on the President's desk for signature.

20 December 2007

Making Hunting Politically Correct

"Locavore," get your gun. From the New York Times.

Just one thing . . . the author's final statement that, "Hunters need to push a new public image based on deeper traditions: we are stewards of the land, hunting on ground that we know and love, collecting indigenous, environmentally sustainable food for ourselves and our families" is preaching to the choir. And he doesn't even realize it.

Hunters already know their place as stewards, though it isn't often shouted to the rooftops. Ignorance on the subject by those who enjoy calling hunters "Bambi killers" is rampant and isthe reason why many hunters do not broach the subject with people who have no desire for an intellectually honest conversation on the matter.

To the good, though Mr. Rinella has just learned these facts, he is spreading the word and that -- in the end -- is a very good thing.

h/t to Glenn Reynolds

GOP Hopeful Tancredo Drops Out

Colorado Representative Tom Tancredo today dropped out of the republican primary run for president, and endorsed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

From the transcript of his news conference:

"In fact, according to Newsweek, the Tancredo campaign has already won. And just this month, The Economist, The New Yorkers, The Wall Street Journal, and even The New York Times have grudgingly accredited our campaign with forcing the issue of immigration to the forefront of the national debate and, more importantly, with forcing nearly every Republican presidential candidate to commit themselves to an immigration plan that calls for securing our borders, enforcing our immigration laws.

"And even the Democrats, by the way, are tortured by the fact that a misstatement on the issue, like, for instance, suggesting support for Governor Spitzer's plan to giver driver's licenses to illegal aliens will cost them dearly in the polls.

"Who would have thought this could have happened six months ago, a year ago? I mean, it's beyond anybody's wildest expectations that we have been able to, with the help of America, really, get our national leaders to pay attention to the issue."

If you were not familiar with Rep. Tancredo's position on the Second Amendment, trust me, he is a champion of the basic human right of self defense. Click here to see where he has stood on issues related to firearms and gun control.

Could Romney's Continued Support For Rifle Bans Be His Achilles Heel?

After weeks of word-play about the 2A, GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney may have dug himself a deeper hole on Tim Russert's Meet The Press program last Sunday. True, his tortured explanation that he received an NRA endorsement (which he never received), came to light quickly in mainstream media and the blogosphere.

But his reiteration of support for a ban on semi-automatic competition rifles . . . well, it just isn't playing well.

BTW, can anyone define for me just exactly what is "a weapon of unusual lethality?"

Finally, Some Common Sense In The UK

Perhaps government is coming around in the United Kingdom. The very idea that an individual can be jailed for defending themselves is idiotic.

Mortal Kombat Kills

Let's ban it, or register it, or restrict its possession to people over 21.

NICS Bill Headed To President Bush For Signature

Both houses of Congress have approved legislation that would modify the National Instant Check System (NICS), making it (depending on whom you talk to), either better for firearms owners and all Americans, or, a disastrous change that either: a) takes away more rights from lawful firearms owners, or b) gives the evil gun lobby everything it wanted.

Whew! With me so far?

Here is how the National Rifle Association described the outcome:

"After months of careful negotiation, pro-gun legislation was passed through Congress today. The National Rifle Association (NRA) worked closely with Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) to address his concerns regarding H.R. 2640, the National Instant Check System (NICS) Improvement Act. These changes make a good bill even better. The end product is a win for American gun owners." Read the full text here.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) stated the following:

"The bill also will allow for individuals who are now unfairly prohibited from owning guns to appeal their prohibition and have their Second Amendment rights restored. This is currently not possible, and tens of thousands of Americans of sound mind, including many veterans, are permanently barred without due process from possessing firearms."

On the statement above, I heartily concur. The very idea that a veteran, who perhaps once saw a mental health professional for some counseling and today leads a normal, productive life, could be permanently banned from owning a firearm in the name of safey by the banners, is more than insulting and intellectually dishonest. The real purpose of those who support such nonsense is an eventual full ban of all firearms ownership -- via incrementalism. The language in the bill rights this wrong with regard to our military veterans and others.

Now, some would say that the NRA caved on this issue, and should have done more to stop any kind of bill from moving through. Others note that there was too much momentum after the tragic shootings on the Virginia Tech campus for some sort of tightening of controls regarding mental health records for firearms buyers.

Those who would deny Americans the right to self defense see it another way. They are aghast at a legislative process that did not install controls for one-a-month purchases, background checks on private transactions, and what they describe as closing the non-existent, so-called gun show "loophole." They are more than whining today. They are in daze, of sorts, wondering how the process for change they pushed backfired so dramatically in their faces.

Here is what the grabbers have to say (though the Brady Bunch, interestingly, is pleased):
Violence Policy Center
Brady Campaign (formerly Handgun Control Inc.)

From the mainstream and online media:
All Headline News
USA Today
New York Times (updated AP story)

Statement From Politicos:
Anti-gun House Speaker NancyPelosi

NRA Exhibition & Meetings Are Returning To Pittsburgh

The NRA will be back in 3-rivers town in four years! The National Rifle Association has announced it will hold its 2011 exhibitions and meetings in Pittsburgh, Pa. from April 28 to May 1. The David L. Lawrence Convention Center downtown will host the huge event.

Pittsburgh last hosted the NRA annual gathering in 2004.

Firearms Coalition Sizes Up Presidential Candidates

Jeff Knox over at The Firearms Coalition has taken a hard look at the presidential candidates and come up with a scorecard on where the wannabe's stand with regard to firearms and firearms ownership. The analysis covers only gun rights, and does not take a look at stands on other issues.

Titled "Candidates On Rights," Jeff's piece covers both major political parties. There is no info on Hunter or Tancredo on the GOP side. I'm not sure why Hunter was ommitted, but Tancredo is announcing he will drop out of the race.

Nice work Jeff!

Urban Lawmakers Target Rural Handguns Down Under

What happens when an immovable object meets an unstoppable force (did I say that correctly?)? That might be the case Down Under, where lawmakers in Australia's urban areas are proposing bans on handguns in rural areas.

That's right . . . the old, "we know better than you what is good for you." Simply put, farmers are not happy with the latest pronouncements specifically aimed at Western Australia. Farmers appear to have been granted an extension into January to comment on the ban proposals. Look for continued fireworks on this one!

h/t to Jeff Soyer

In NY, Everyone Is Equal; Some Are More Equal Than Others

"Albany, New York's police chief says there are as many as five machine guns still unaccounted for in the ongoing probe of city officers who bought guns for their personal use.

"Chief James Tuffey says no disciplinary actions will be taken, because it was so long ago. . ."

Hmmm. No statute of limitations for events that occurred ALL THE WAY BACK in the 1990s? Think the chief would recommend the same outcome if the miscreants were you or me?

19 December 2007

Florida Road Rage A Lesson In Need For Ohio Castle Doctrine/No Duty To Retreat

Here's what happens when idiots on the freeway go into road rage and attack an innocent driver.
And don't think it couldn't happen here. But the ramifications would be far different up north than in the Sunshine State.

These two clowns in Florida would probably love to sue the guy who defended himself and his daughter. The civil courts for years have worked that way, letting criminals exploit the courts to get a payday as a result of their violent actions. But Florida has a Castle Doctrine/No Duty To Retreat law in place. It became effective October 1, 2005.

The Florida Senate passed the bill by a vote of 39 YEAS to zero NAYS. In the Florida House of Representatives, the vote was 94 YEAS to 20 NAYS -- a four-to-one margin. When the Florida law passed, Alan Korwin of Gunlaws.com commented about how media nationwide started in immediately with "its 'Gunshine State,' blood in the streets, Dirty Harry, vigilante, irrational mass murder nonsense, mythologies, lies and blatant unethical behavior."

Guess what? None of that stuff happened. Nada . . . Nyet . . . Non.

Just as when CCW passed in Ohio, people like Ed Jerse and others in the Ohio General Assembly whined that there would be "blood on the grass at Cleveland Stadium" and other places where people gather. Guess what? It hasn't happened.

But the road rage scenario would have a different ending in Ohio. In the Buckeye State, advocates are trying to pass common-sense legislation, Senate Bill 184, that would prevent people from being sued for exercising their basic human right of self defense. And already the long-knives are coming out . . . being sharpened by those either who don't like a piece of the bill, who hate guns and gun owners (a recommendation, get HELP -- hate is a sickness), or who have a built-in bias.

In Columbus, there is a TV reporter who has been snooping around this week trying to find someone who either plans to testify in favor of the bill, or who already has testified to its importance, in order to do a story on what "event" pushed them to want Castle Doctrine in place.

Could his line of questions imply he has already made up his mind? Is he uninterested in certain interview subjects because there is no sensational event tied to support, or because he disagrees with the very idea that an ordinary person would think this is common sense legislation?

See? A built-in bias that he does not even recognize. It's sad. It's pathetic. And it is all too real in urban journalism today.

Florida has it right. Ohio needs to lead, as well. Ask Hygens Labidou in Florida. He was an ordinary person prior to being a victim. And it doesn't matter whether you live in Florida or Ohio, or somewhere in between.

Everyone is an ordinary person prior to being a victim. And those who make the choice to defend themselves rather than be a victim, should not suffer the indignity and costliness of being robbed by the civil court system for defending themselves.

Advanced Origami

Perfect for the holidays -- non-lethal papercraft.

NOTE: You probably should NOT try to get this through airport security. TSA has no sense of humor.

Fallout in DC

The District of Columbia's attorney general (I honestly did not know there was such a post) has resigned. Here are the important points:

"D.C. Attorney General Linda Singer resigned yesterday, as lawyers in her office prepare to defend the city's 30-year-old ban on handguns before the Supreme Court . . .

"(Mayor) Fenty, a Democrat, did not confirm or deny reports that the attorney general's resignation stemmed from frustration over the mayor's general counsel, Peter Nickles, intruding on the duties of her office."

It would appear that all in DC are not in agreement regarding the Heller/Parker appeal. Reports also had the Brady Campaign practically begging DC officials not to appeal the case out of fear they would lose and have this precedent staring them in the face in courtrooms across the nation. More to come, I'm sure . . .

For the full story, click here.

Objects Shaped Like (Gasp!) Guns

Breda, from up in Northern Ohio, was having a bad day Monday. But she did take the time to post a neat find from a website called oobject, which reports on interesting stuff for sale on the internet.

Here are objects shaped like firearms. Some cool stuff!

NOTE: I will say I don't particularly care for the gun-shaped whistle, or more specifically, why the manufacturer decided to design the toy this way. Now if the kids were asked to blow into the breech, it would be great!

Even Brady Chief Can't Get Dems To Come Out For More Gun Control

Sebastian at Snowflakes In Hell has an interesting observation about the Brady Campaign's Paul Helmke, who try as he might, cannot get democrat presidential candidates to come out and push for more gun control.

The Rise And Fall Of A Florida Inventor

Bill Atkins thought he was creating something to make target shooting even more enjoyable. The BATF had no problem with his creation when he sought a legal ruling and test firing.

Until the agency changed its mind. Today he faces bankruptcy.

Opening Up National Parks To Allow Firearms

A strong movement (finally) is growing to allow firearms into national parks. Check out information from Ohioans for Concealed Carry on how to write to your senator on the matter. For background, here are stories in the Idaho Statesman and Anchorage Daily News newspapers on the move and why it makes sense.

Heller/Parker Spawns New War Between The States

UPDATED 12/20/2007, 12:10 pm -- More from the Virginia attorney general.

States are lining up on both sides of the District of Columbia v. Heller case (formerly Parker) that will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court next spring.

To date it is: Maryland, New York, Illinois and Hawaii vs. Virginia, Arkansas and Texas. Here is what Virginia's attorney general had to say on the matter.

More (states) to come on both sides, to be sure . . . . Stay tuned!

18 December 2007

Surprisingly Balanced Piece on Hunting in NY Times

I am finally finding some time to attack the pile on my reading table. I came across this piece from back in early November in the New York Times. It is about hunting in Maine, a place near and dear to me. Surprisingly, it was fairly balanced and really took a good look at the culture there and the economic impact hunting provides hamlets across the Pine Tree State.

I decided to post this simply because it is a good piece overall. Many of the comments on the online version from the Times, however, are a hoot. Some are well thought out. Others are the usual, to be expected, anti-gun rhetoric or anti-hunting/pro-vegan position from some. The anti-hunting, anti-gun comments are a look into the minds of those who wish solely to control the thoughts and actions of others. You'll get the idea . . .

Poster From Bygone Days Still Holds Important Message

A poster from days gone by . . . and who can possibly argue with its message?

"It's Your Turn To Buy A Gun . . .

. . . "Do your part to keep America Strong!"

Image courtesy of Brownells.com.

Gun Control Supporter's Comments Elicit Expected Rational Feedback

A writer to Pantagraph, a daily newspaper that serves eight counties and some 60 communities in Central Illinois, discussed his belief of the need for "sensible" (there's that word again) gun control laws.

The comments posted below his writing show that most Pantagraph readers strongly disagree with his assertion.

Bloomberg Still Eyeing Indy Run For Prez?

Speculation is that NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, NOT a friend to lawful firearms owners, is noodling around an independent run at the White House.

Third Senator Places 'Hold' On Sullivan BATFE Confirmation

Apparently a third U.S. senator is putting a "hold" on the confirmation of Mike Sullivan as director of BATFE. Sullivan does not think highly of firearms owners or firearms ownership. Read it here, and don't forget to call your senators and tell them that Sullivan is not the right person for the job.

Dispatch (Again) Calls For Background Checks At Gun Shows, Private Transactions

Columbus Dispatch weighs in on background checks.

"States should step up their reporting to the federal list, and laws should be rewritten to require that background checks also be run on purchasers who buy via the Internet, gun shows and other means."

Okay, then the editors (and owners of the paper) won't have any problem with a requirement that every private automobile transaction at the Columbus Dispatch classifieds and its online counterpart require proof to the Clerk of Courts BEFORE paperwork can be transferred that the buyer has passed both a criminal background check and a refresher driver's ed examination? Remember, cars kill.

NOTE: The Dispatch conveniently does not address the courageous actions of the young woman who stopped the Colorado church shooting with her personal firearm. Hmmm. . . . perhaps it does not fit the paper's agenda?

Spitzer Mum On Private Lawyers

Anti-gun Gov. Elliot Spitzer, who has created a mountain of problems for himself during his short tenure as chief executive of New York, reportedly has hired private lawyers to represent his interests. He won't comment.

NOTE: We have covered Mr. Spitzer, the populist former attorney general of the Empire State, and his problems with state troopers and turning a blind eye to law enforcement purchasing fully automatic firearms for personal use. This from the man who doesn't like private citizens owning firearms for their personal defense.

CNN Poll: Majority In U.S. Support Gun Ownership Rights

Interesting choice of words by CNN: It is not, the majority of Americans "say" people have a right to own firearms. Instead, they report that the majority of Americans "believe" people have a right to own guns.

Still, be sure to check out the video story on gun buy-backs and the poll on firearms ownership. District of Columbia police say they "believe" gun buy-backs work to stem crime.

More On Heller/Parker Appeal From D.C.

Here is more coverage of District of Columbia v. Heller (formerly Parker v. District of Columbia), which will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court next spring.

Salt Lake Tribune (anti self defense) - part of a point/counterpoint package
Fort Worth Star-Telegram (guest columnist)
Boston Globe

Detroit News (middle of the road, leaning anti)

Salt Lake Tribute (pro self defense) -- part of a point/counterpoint package
Rutland (Vermont) Herald
Southeast Texas Record

17 December 2007

Word Play

From blogger Ahab. A reader commented on one of his pages, and it took off from there. Combining the ideas "metro-sexual" and "tactical."

“My belt and shoes always match my holster and magazine carriers, so I guess I’m metro-tactical.”

Love it.

Minnesota Man Fires On Police As They Break Through Wrong Doorway

UPDATED 12/18/07 -- Apparently the Minneapolis Police were too busy to make a quick records search to see who owned and resided at the home they entered. I'd make a donut shop joke, but the stereotype is not entirely accurate, and I have a lot of LEO friends and readers.

Innocent family man sees men break down his door and barge in, and he fires. They were the police. And they were at the wrong address. Police wonder whether to charge him with something, while he consults with a civil attorney. From USA Today.

Jeff Soyer On Romney And NRA Endorsements

GOP prez hopeful Mitt Romney tried some revisionist history in a lengthy interview with Tim Russert on Meet The Press. He got caught.

Let's Add Militia Classes To High School Programs Alongside Drivers Ed

Interesting suggestion to add studies in the Bill of Rights, instructions on how to be a proper juror in court, ham radio operation, first aid through CPR, and of course, pistol and rifle instruction.

How Many More Will Die In 'Gun-Free' Zones Before The Media Start Asking Why?

Las Vegas Review-Journal assistant editorial page editor Vin Suprynowicz asks a very good question.

Cook County Readies Registration, Ban Ordinances

Ahhh . . . . Cook County. People say that the political power abuses well known to this Illinois political hotbed are all in the history books.

Guess what? It's still happening!

Arizona Town Turns To 2A To Defend Itself

"The unincorporated farming community of 1,064 along the outer edge of Maricopa County has found itself victim to a methamphetamine-related crime surge, with police protection almost nonexistent since a sheriff’s substation 25 miles away closed. Today, the nearest substation is some 60 miles away in the distant Phoenix suburb of Sun City."

And thus, the next time someone tells you the Second Amendment is outdated, share with them what is happening in tiny Aguila, Ariz.

16 December 2007

Entire Bill of Rights Endangered In Modern World?

Yesterday was Bill of Rights Day. The Cato Institute, however, noted the anniversary of the ratification of this monumental document with a sobering look at its condition in the modern, politically-correct world.

NY Times Columnist Parses 2A; Reynolds Weighs In; English Language Expert Is Final Arbiter For Me

Glenn Reynods' Instapundit comments on the New York Times column today that attempts once more to parse the Second Amendment. Guest columnist Adam Freedman tries to make the case that regardless of comma placement, the 2A protects miliatias, and not individuals.

Mr. Reynolds has the following observation: "It's short of the conclusion because he misses a key point: the Framers considered an armed populace important, but didn't trust the government -- at either the state or federal levels -- to arm the people. Since the armed populace (the "militia" was said to consist of "the body of the people") was essential as a check on government power, the government couldn't be allowed to disarm it by neglect. Thus, the Second Amendment may be "about protecting militias," but it does so by keeping the populace armed. In fact, Brannon Denning and I expanded on this point at more length in this article from the William and Mary Bill of Rights Law Journal a few years ago. Click "read more" for an excerpt."

Personally, beyond my own beliefs, understanding of law and knowledge of the historical writings of the Framers, I also put my stock in this grammatical analysis of the Second Amendment. It was conducted a number of years ago as part of a correspondence with a highly regarded publisher, retired journalism professor and expert on English language useage in the Los Angeles schools system. He didn't know he was being asked to parse and review the meaning of a piece of the Bill of Rights until later in the dialogue. Read the story yourself and make up your own mind. It was first published in Gun Week newspaper in 1991.

Cal Thomas Continues His Conversion -- Gun-Free Zones Kill

In 1990, syndicated columnist Cal Thomas thought “sensible” gun control was okay. He changed later in the Clinton years when he learned “give them an inch and they will take them all." Today, he says the argument has come full circle.

Now, he says, the focus -- rightly -- was on the armed private citizen who stopped the carnage. And not on the man who stole a gun to commit murder in what he thought would be a gun-free zone.

Thomas adds, "Killers — ones with mental disorders, or terrorists — look for places with large gatherings to amplify their acts. That's why in recent years they have selected targets ranging from the World Trade Center, to Columbine High School, to shopping malls and now a megachurch. On the rare occasions when an armed person has been on the scene before police arrive, such acts have been stopped before further damage could be done. When no armed person has been present, by the time the police show up the killing is usually over and the gunman has shot himself."

Folks, the evidence is more than convincing -- gun-free zones are among the most dangerous anywhere. It's time to put people first, and put the blame where it belongs -- on criminals and their actions, and on misguided, feel-good gun control policies -- not firearms.

h/t to Mike Regan

15 December 2007


The day started off beautifully. In the field early, saw deer within the first few minutes on stand. Two of us got shots off, but no luck. Three of the four of our party saw deer today. Our fifth partner had a scheduling conflict (apparently last night he mentioned to his wife that he needed to get his gear ready, and she replied, "what gear do you need to go to a wedding?"), and was not able to join us.

To the trucks at 11 to check on weather forecasts, and call family to see what is happening an hour or two west of us. We decided to head back out for another 90 minutes. And in that time, the landscape changed dramatically. Probably two inches of snow fell, light at first, then turned to rain and sleet, then back to heavy snow. And as we were packing up, we observed that finally in this entire season we have a bit of snow on the ground. We are finally able to gain some perspective of the landscape, and see things at greater distances due to the new contrast.

All of this as we are packing up. Our one hour, 15 minute ride up was a harrowing two hours back. In 4WD most of the way. And then in Columbus, just dealing with lousy drivers who act like they have forgotten it snows in winter in Ohio. Crazy drivers.

I felt safer in the woods surrounded by men with guns.

Happy BOR Day!

In 1791, on this day, the Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution was ratified. There is a reason the right to keep and bear arms is in the second position. It protects all other rights guaranteed (not granted) by the Constitution.

Put up a flag, take a trip to the range, exercise your freedoms. Happy Bill of Rights Day!

Maine Editorial Writer: No Difference Between 'Disarmed' And 'Victim'

My favorite paper in the northeast U.S. has a column by one of its editorial writers. He says recent events are more proof that "disarmed" and "victim" are synonymous.

NOTE: Even though Maine has been largely converted into a blue state by hard-left Massachusetts "summer people" and their collective mindset, its nice to know there still is some sanity in the Pinetree State.

14 December 2007

Deer Bonus Weekend May Be A Whiteout

The "White Death" is still some 600 miles away stuck over Missouri and Oklahoma, but from the media stories you would think it were on our doorstep. It must be coming in fast. Winter storm warnings are up for most of Ohio through Sunday night with predictions for everything from 2 inches to 12+ inches of snow, with rain, freezing rain and sleet thrown in just to make things interesting. The weather guys don't know what's going to happen, but one thing is for sure -- tomorrow and Sunday are the gun-deer season "bonus weekend" in Ohio, but the weather may make things dicey.

The Mt. Kaelbling Hunt Club "membership" will take look at the situation at 5 am Saturday and decide whether to try to get in a half day hunting in Knox County at the former Christmas tree farm. Who knows when the freezing rain and whatever else will set in.

Sunday was to be a trip to Morgan County in Southeast Ohio with buddy Jude to scare up some whitetails on my family acreage there. Unfortunately, it looks like a washout -- or whiteout.
Of course, there is still blackpowder season between Christmas and New Year's Day, and bow season runs into February. But I'd rather put something in the freezer in the coming days.

Civil War 2: Mike Bloomberg Declares War On Georgia

. . . and a Georgia business is fighting back.

The World: Iraqui Policewomen Told To Hand In Their Guns

Apparently firearms are for men only in that culture.

Ever Wonder How Journalists Get 'Terms' They Use

The media is often portrayed as lazy, out-of-touch, and downright hostile to lawful firearms ownership. This is not always the case, but the vast majority of stories out there would lend regular folks to get that impression. As a recovering journalist, myself, I saw many examples of harsh terms used because a reporter either did not like guns, or didn't understand them but had a fear of them out of ignorance (not stupidity, but lack of knowledge of their operation).

"Official" jargon dictionaries - aka stylebooks -- are used by journalists everywhere. I still have AP and UPI stylebooks within arms reach at my home office, next to dictionaries and a thesaurus or two. Here is a look at the Associated Press stylebook from 1998. The pages show how AP advises writers to use the language when they are writing about firearms.

If you see a bias creeping into the wording, you can imagine why some stories read as they do when written by journalists who innocently don't know any better, but believe they are following an accurate guide that is making their story more understandable. Still, I'll bet it's been years since most journalist have read the Canons of Journalism, if they've read them at all.

I was a member of the Society of Professional Journalists from 1980 until around five years ago. When I was a board member with the organization's professional chapter in Columbus, it was not uncommon for frequent discussion to come up regarding SPJ's Code of Ethics for journalists, and that was among ourselves -- working journalists! In fact, I was asked by faculty at The Ohio State University in the 1990s to help advise as the code of ethics used by the students at the School of Journalism was updated.

You can see why I'm so sensitive about accuracy, truthfulness in general media, and doing everything possible to eliminate bias.

h/t to Bitter

Would Jeanne Assam Be A Criminal With More Gun Laws?

Thinking people know more gun laws would not have stopped the Colorado church shootings. But syndicated columnist Cal Thomas wonders whether more stringent gun control would, in fact, have made hero Jeanne Assam a criminal.

Kerry Throws Support Behind Sullivan ATF Pick

Well, we know where Sen. John "Can I Get Me A Huntin' License Here" Kerry stands on guns (particularly we Ohioans, who watched him embarrass himself as he prepped for a faux duck hunt {aka photo op} in the Buckeye State). Remember? He said he was a huge 2A supporter during his failed presidential bid, at the same time he was a co-sponsor of a number of draconian gun control bills in the Congress. True colors continue to bleed with Kerry's support of Mike Sullivan to permantly run BATFE.

War On Guns Illustrates Boomers' Choice To Avoid Personal Responsibility

An interesting read. For those baby boomers who are used to plug and play software, point and click remote devices, and electronic tools and games that mean you never have to leave your comfy sofa and "experience" real life, comes the theory that boomers feel it may be too complicated to take care of themselves. The self-indulgence dictates that it is easier to ignore personal responsibility and put one's life in the hands of others. Thereby, supporting gun control.

Cartoon Illustrates Sad Truth of Gun-Free Zones

The sad truth of gun-free zones is illustrated in this political cartoon.

13 December 2007

Fred Thompson vs. Anti Self -Defense United Nations

Please note right off that I am not a "Fred-head." I have not yet decided who I am supporting for president. Still analyzing and processing. BUT, Mr. Thompson made some interesting statements back in early November which I did not cover due to my focus on some competing issues.

The importance of his statements are not to be neglected, however. More importantly, the United Nations response is very telling. Dave Kopel covered it nicely at The Volokh Conspiracy.

IBD Says The People Who Jeanne Assam Saved Would Probably Agree That 2A Is Individual Right

I don't like the headline, "Dirty Harriet" by any stretch. But, another phrase out of this column in Investors Business Daily is insightful: " . . . the problem with society may not be who has guns, but who doesn't."

That pretty much sums it up for me.

Tennessee Powers That Be Need To Read Up On The Law

In Tennessee, apparently knowledge of the law is not a requirement to be elected sheriff or district attorney.

12 December 2007

Is Hell Freezing Over AGAIN?

Huh? Hillary Clinton taking the side of gun owners to trash a primary opponent?

More calculated flip-flopping from the sage of Chicago, Little Rock and Chappaqua.

PD Editor: 'It's Nice To See A Gun Even Things Up A Bit'

"Either way, I hope that when Anthony Kennedy sits down to decide which way his vote will swing, he'll consider that when the shooting starts, an armed church is a safer place than a "gun-free" mall."

The words of Kevin O'Brian, deputy editorial page editor at the usually anti-gun Cleveland Plain Dealer, in a column titled "It's Nice To See A Gun Even Things Up A Bit."

Who Needs A Gun?

The "left" is freaking out. Apparently, even leading democrat candidates for president don't want to get involved in a discussion about gun control, and that has one Huffington Post columnist hyperventilating.

The Brady Campaign, however, continues to mix fact with fiction. They still can't decide whether the stolen firearm used by the depressed young man in the Colorado shootings was an assault rifle or an assault weapon (there is a huge difference), so they use both interchangeably in their story. Plus their usual confusion over clips and magazines. All mixed with emotional pleas designed to confuse the fact that a criminal, bent on doing harm to people in a supposedly safe gun-free zone with a firearm he stole, was stopped cold by a level-headed parishioner who had volunteered to help with security carrying her personal sidearm. She is a hero.