1346: Genoese mercenaries fighting under Philip VI of France are surprised,
unpleasantly, when they are among the first soldiers in history to come under cannon fire. It has been claimed that this battle, which occurred near Crécy in northern France early in the Hundred Years War, marks the first use of cannon on the battlefield.
Like many claims that reach us through the mists of time, this one is hard to verify and is oft disputed: According to Arab historian Ahmad Y. al-Hassan, the Mamluks
employed the “first cannon in history” against the Mongols at the Battle of Ain Jalut in 1260. In the end, it may come down to how the word “cannon” was defined in those days.
26 August 2009
Posted by Brent Greer at 9:49 PM
25 August 2009
Jude Cuddy, an occasional contributor to The Ready Line, competed once again at the National Matches this summer at Camp Perry. The Matches, organized by the Civilian Marksmanship Program with assistance from the National Rifle Association and the Ohio National Guard, brings together some of the best shooting competitors from every corner of the U.S., even from other parts of the planet.
Standing, seated or prone, civilians compete next to active duty military personnel. On the line you might have a plumber, a cop, a salesman, a member of the U.S. Navy marksmanship team, a retiree, a college student, a cattle farmer, and even a high school student. Unlike golf, there are no "ladies tees." No special line for younger shooters, no handicapping for less experienced shooters versus Army marksmen and markswomen. But, like golf, you don't compete against others. You compete against yourself, firing your best score and then comparing your results with hundreds of others on the line that day, or that week.
In his piece, Jude reflects upon his week and a half on the shores of Lake Erie, what it means to compete there, and why the very thought of of the phrase "let every man be armed" strikes such a raw nerve among those whose motivation to get involved in government is "control."
For you see, that phrase -- and that last word -- are in total contradiction with one another. I'll let Jude explain, in another of his brilliant essays . . . From Behind The Berm.
One year later and one year older, the annual sojourn to the storied Camp Perry in Port Clinton, Ohio had concluded. Yet another memorable experience that reaffirms the responsibility that we all have as citizens to exercise our God-given rights, and to preserve, protect and defend the nation and our way of life.
What is newsworthy is what did not happen during the many weeks that the facility was packed with small arms of all descriptions: smallbore rifle, black powder rifles, pistols and of course the favorite scapegoat of the liberals – the Service Rifle. Popularly vilified as the root of all social evils, this fine instrument that protects our life and liberty was present in the thousands.
However, there was no elevated police presence, no riot gear, nor tear gas present. What the left assigns to the presence of firearms – carnage, mayhem, bloodshed and unruly mobs - never materialized. Quite the opposite occurred. I suspect that crime is actually lower than usual – which is probably fairly low to begin with – during the entire time the shooting sports are taking place. Millions of rounds were fired and no one was injured. Should there be something wrong?
What this underscores is the self-discipline, self-policing conduct of all participants involved. What will never be acknowledged by those clamoring for yet more gun control laws is that it is the individual who is responsible for his or her own conduct – not the instrument of choice. In the “Age of Blame” where there is always someone or something at fault – those engaged in the shooting sports are willing and expected to be answerable for themselves alone.
In the general demographic one can sadly conclude that we are no longer a nation of riflemen. But as long as there are those willing to display the necessary skill and dedication to engage in the shooting disciplines you will find solid citizens who reflect the values that this country was founded upon. Personal responsibility and accountability are a way of life.
I tip my hat to those fellow participants – regular folks from around the nation and world – who firmly believe in the right to keep and bear arms. Many are the same men and women who are currently serving our country and keeping us “safe from all enemies, foreign and domestic." Not the sinister, recluse loners the media portrays us to be, but everyday Americans passionate about exercising their rights affirmed by our Declaration and Bill of Rights.
Another successful trip to the shores of Lake Erie. Since nothing untoward happened it is therefore not newsworthy to the media types, and went unnoticed. Perhaps that is for the best, for what most shooters ultimately want is to just be left unfettered to engage in a very rewarding endeavor. Only those who fear citizen-soldiers that cultivate such skills would want to infringe the practice and possession of these same instruments.
Jude T. Cuddy
Posted by Brent Greer at 10:23 PM
22 August 2009
A fascinating, and simultaneously disturbing discussion on the constitutionality of firearms registration is taking place within legal circles. A horrible public policy, everyone agrees. But would it be constitutional?
Read it here.
I'm no attorney, but the U.S. Constitution says the government may not infringe on the rights to bear arms. But could it be permissable to register all guns? Interestingly, the mood in the nation is toward the right to own guns. Women are buying firearms in record numbers. More people have concealed carry licenses than ever before. The Heller decision by the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the affirmation by the Founders of this nation that the Second Amendment is an individual right. Washington DC was forced to abandon its antiquated prohibition on the ownership of handguns. Chicago is on the ropes trying to defend its antiquated handgun regs.
Even President Obama, abandoning his traditional gun control position, noted that an african american gentleman carrying a competition rifle had a right to do so, when the man showed up at a rally. Official Washington, those that know how to get things done, and how to keep the peace, want no part of gun control right now.
The president's whacky health care initiatives are on the ropes, Americans of all colors, stripes and economic backgrounds increasingly are stepping up and protesting the intrusion of government into their lives, whether it be in banking, the automobile industry, insurance industry, or elsewhere.
So the liklihood of major gun registration initiatives picking up any traction right now are negligible.
But is it constitutional?
Posted by Brent Greer at 6:26 PM
14 August 2009
?It’s been ten years, according to this Brady press release, since the Million Mom March popped onto the scene, spured by a mass shooting at a Jewish community center in 1999. That got me to thinking what some of the missteps the Brady organization had made, mostly under the leadership of former Maryland congressman Michael Barnes."
Posted by Brent Greer at 8:39 PM
The 72-year-old store owner was viewed as an easy mark by some local hoods in Harlem, New York City.
Posted by Brent Greer at 8:24 PM
Posted by Brent Greer at 6:23 AM
12 August 2009
Posted by Brent Greer at 8:15 AM
04 August 2009
Posted by Brent Greer at 8:37 AM