31 October 2007

Prince Harry Questioned Over Shooting Of Rare Hen Harriers

Interesting language from our cousins across the pond. "The 23-year-old Prince, a bloodsports fan, was said to have been out shooting with a pal from the Van Cutsem family when the birds died last Wednesday evening."

Bloodsports? When the birds "died?" While I am in favor of conservation regarding endangered species, I am assuming this writer is not a fan of hunting.

U. of Delaware's Ideological Re-Education For Students Painted As 'Treatment'

The "thought police" are alive and well at the University of Delaware. Residence hall students are being offered "treatment" for any incorrect attitudes regarding class, gender, religion, culture or sexuality they might hold upon entering the school. Treatment? Incorrect attitudes? This can't be good.

Recap On 'Empty Holster' Protest And Troubling Decisions From University Officials

Columnist John Longnecker points out how what America didn't see during the week-long "Empty Holster" protest on U.S. college campuses is what is truly newsworthy. A very good examination of the implications of this protest -- starting in the weeks prior to the actual event.

30 October 2007

Gov. 'Terminator' To Challenge Barbara Boxer for Senate Seat?

Speculation is rampant that Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger may challenge democrat Sen. Barbara Boxer for her California seat in 2010. Though that election is three years away, early polling shows them in a dead heat. Let's see . . . anti-gun democrat vs. anti-gun republican. Hmmm, if I lived on the Left Coast I would want who is behind Door Number Three.

Time Magazine Ranks 'Bambi' Among Top 25 Horror Flicks of All Time

Leave it to urbanite journalists to find a way -- in the midst of subject matter that includes zombies, aliens, psychopaths, knives, exorcisms, killer sharks, teens with telekenetic powers, mutant flies and chainsaws -- to find a subtle way to slam hunters and hunting. Click here for the full story. BTW, Bambi ranked 20th out of 25, ahead of the 1931 version of Frankenstein, ahead of Lon Chaney's classic 1925 Phantom of the Opera, and ahead of the creepy 1925 Nosferatu.

Ohio Violent Crime Consortium to Focus on 'Gun Crimes'

On Friday, Ohio officials announced they have set up a "Gun Crime Center" to aid law enforcement in understanding "weapons trafficking," ballistics, and to help trace guns used in violent crimes. Located in Richfield, near Cleveland, the program is known as the Northern Ohio Violent Crime Consortium and is being paid for with a $5.9 million federal grant. By its name, I hope they are looking into other violent criminal activities, and aren't tempted to focus solely on crimes involving the illegal use of self defense tools.

NY Columnist Claims NRA Counts Gang-Bangers, Mass Murderers As Members

A guest columnist at the New York Daily News suggests that everyone who believes that power comes from the barrel of a gun -- including the Virginia Tech killer, gang-bangers and others -- is a member of the world's largest firearms safety organization, the NRA. First, criminals don't join advocacy organizations. But in one area, is is right on the money . . . for self defense purposes, the only way for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves against powerful criminals is to have on hand what criminals fear most -- an equal amount of power. But that's not his position.

Idaho Enticing Firearms Industry

The word is out . . . "Don't like the way you are treated by anti-gun lawmakers in your own state? Come to Idaho!" You know hell is close to freezing over when Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, is trying to keep Remington Arms in the Empire State. Click here to find out why pigs are flying, too.

G.I. Joe, Report To Brussels!

G.I. Joe may be in danger of disappearing as an American icon. Not disappearing, just disappearing as an American icon. Click here for a dissection of the proposal from Paramount.

Brady Spokesman Glosses Over Certain Constitutional Language

Here is a look at the Brady Campaign's YouTube marketing effort to rally anti-self-defense advocates around the nation regarding Parker v. District of Columbia, a 2A case that may be considered by the U.S. Supreme Court. The authors of the Armed and Safe blog also point out that Dennis Henigan of the Brady Bunch skips over certain rather critical language in the Constitution to make his point. He states that you shouldn't amend the words to the Constitution, right after he does just that by omitting the words, "the people." Click on the headline to see the video.

UA Incident: Homeowner Criticized By Officer PART 2

Here is the follow up to the incident in Upper Arlington, Ohio I mentioned in an earlier post. It is also a decent example of why the "No Duty To Retreat/Castle Doctrine" bill now being heard in the Ohio Senate must be passed.

A little over a week ago, a homeowner, his wife and small child returned home around 6 pm from running errands. UA is a generally affluent community with little crime. The homeowner had been having trouble with a garage door opener that would open and close the door at odd times. He thought there was a short, and had had the opener serviced, and of course put new batteries in the remote devices.

I was able to chat with the homeowner recently. Here is his story . . .
Seeing the garage door open, he did not suspect an intruder. It was probably another opener issue. But to be certain, he locked his wife and child safely in the automobile, and entered the house. Everything looked fine as he moved about, until he was well into the house and saw the door to his wife's office open. A door that is always closed. Alarmed, he quickly turned to their bedroom where he keeps a 12-gauge pump shotgun for self-protection. He loaded the shotgun, then racked the firearm, putting a shell in place. That sound is something quite unique, a sound everyone knows -- particularly criminals. Immediately after he racked the shotgun, he heard a loud thump from another part of the house. Like feet hitting the floor. Shortly thereafter, he heard running feet and the back door flying open. He stepped back outside to the driveway to make sure his family was safe. At this point he called 911 from his wife's cellular telephone. After being transferred three times to the proper dispatcher, Upper Arlington police took about 12 minutes to arrive (both he and his wife now have the UA police emergency number programmed into their mobile phones).

Three officers were on scene. He allowed the police to "clear" the house rather than do it himself. The primary officer, who looked to be in his mid-40s, after taking the report, began chastising the homeowner for keeping a shotgun for self defense. He asked the homeowner why he didn't call 911 sooner. The homeowner said he called as soon as it was safe to do so. The police officer then told the homeowner that guns are dangerous and asked him, "what would you have done if he had tried to attack you?" The homeowner tells me he calmly replied to the officer, "I would have shot him." The tongue-lashing from the officer continued. At this point, the police officer went on to tell the homeowner that the person in the house could have sued him for shooting him.

First of all, there is plenty of precedent law on the books in Ohio that a court would have ruled in favor of the homeowner. The homeowner, however, would have to pay an attorney to defend himself against such a suit. This is why passage of the No Duty To Retreat/Castle Doctrine bill now being heard in the Ohio Senate, and sponsored by Sen. Buehrer, is so critical. Instead of making a homeowner, or an individual CCW licensee who is out in public, defend their actions if they use a firearm to protect themselves, it puts the burden of proof on the intruder, or the criminal attacker.

Back to our UA incident. Making matters even more insulting (at least in my book), the Upper Arlington police officer said that now that they were done, did the homeowner "mind me taking a look around your home." This is a way for police to ask if they can "snoop" around your home. By asking and being granted permission, he can't be accused of a search without cause or a warrant. The officer added that maybe by looking around he could "provide some suggestions on keeping the home safer." The homeowner said the officer should have at it . . . "look all you want." The homeowner told me that the officer, prior to entering, and trying to make it sound like a joke, said something to the effect of, "Now, I'm not going to find anything I'm not supposed to in here, am I? Drugs or weapons?" The homeowner replied in the negative. The officer then took a look around. Here is where the officer was just snooping. It wasn't about safety and it wasn't about protecting them from future intrusions. He didn't like the fact that the homeowner had a gun, was not afraid to use it in a defensive situation. So he talked his way back into the home on the off chance he might find something to hang on the homeowner. Finding nothing, and giving no safety advice (I don't believe he ever planned to), the officer left.

Before you condemn the entire department, there is some sanity in left in civilian law enforcement in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Another officer on the scene, an older officer, told the homeowner he did the right thing. He told the homeowner that were he in the homeowners situation, he would have done the same thing.

A call to the Upper Arlington City Manager's office on this matter has gone unreturned. I will keep calling, and write, to find out if it is policy for officers to criticize city residents for exercising their basic human right of self defense. Stay tuned for further updates.

POSTSCRIPT: The homeowner has changed the codes on his garage door opener, just in case it was set to factory settings. Also, UA police advised the homeowner that his well-kept house, which he bought a few years ago from a bank, used to be owned by someone with a checkered criminal history. There is an outside chance someone with a grudge against the former owner didn't know there is a family there now. My guess is that the criminals bought a bunch of generic garage door openers from a Lowes or Home Depot, and have been driving up and down streets seeing if they could open and close any doors on openers that were still set to factory settings. The criminals probably got lucky. Our homeowner did the right thing. The police officer needs to keep his personal opinions to himself, or get out of the department. He wears, by his own definition, a dangerous item on his hip. His irrational fear of firearms is going to get himself, or an innocent UA resident, hurt or worse. My concern is that his opinion is based on an "us versus them" attitude. That hypocrisy is increasingly rampant in civilian law enforcement, and a most dangerous situation.

29 October 2007

Words To Remember . . .

From the Appleseed Project website:

"April 19,1775 -- When marksmanship met history, and the heritage began . . . "

'Appleseed' Shoot A Great Lesson in History, Practical Skills

Chris Knox of the Firearms Coalition has a great writeup on his first visit to an Appleseed Shoot. The Appleseed Project, organized by a group called the Revolutionary War Veterans Association, is a series of shooting events designed to find or create facilities and resources to allow every able and willing citizen to learn to shoot a rifle safely and well, and to do so close to home. They are being held in different parts of the U.S. and interest is growing exponentially. Chris penned a very thoughtful closing statement upon reflection of his day at this particular event:

"I had one of the most intense educational experience of my life this past weekend" . . . . "By becoming riflemen we honor those who gave us what we have. By reviving the tradition of riflery in this country, we strengthen the insurance policy that the Second Amendment represents."

Memo To The Washington Post

Well the Washington Post strikes again. This time with an attack on lawful firearms ownership and guns shows via a suggestion that U.S. guns are the reason for drug cartel-related in Mexico. Yessir, those American guns levitated themselves, transported themselves out of our homes and off our hips, headed south of the border, and started killing Mexicans left and right. Yeah, right. Memo to the Post editors: Dateline Mexico City -- CRIMINALS are killing police officials in Mexico! -30- Click on the post headline for the Post article.

Postscript: Great statement on Alphecca blog regarding this same news story. In Alphecca author Jeff Soyer's words, "Actually, it’s the drug cartels in Mexico that are behind the killings but guns are easier to blame. Time to get that 800 mile wall built!"

Latest Gallup Poll Shows Continued Decline In Interest in Gun Control

Gallup has released a new poll showing that the nation's appetite for gun control continues its steady decline. The poll shows that vast majority of Americans also oppose any kind of ban on handguns. Read it here.

28 October 2007

'Shooting' Alarm System Guards Your Cubicle

This one is just to funny to ignore. An alarm system for when co-workers steal your paper clips, stapler, etc. The systems responses escalate if the "intruder" won't leave. Yes, it's a toy! But still could be fun in the office. Click here for the details.

Disturbing Incident in Upper Arlington, Ohio

I don't know the details yet, but I was just made aware of an incident in the affluent suburb of Upper Arlington, outside Columbus, Ohio. A homeowner who used a shotgun a week ago to confront an intruder who had entered his home was given a tongue-lashing for his actions by a UA police officer, who told him that guns are dangerous. I'll publish more here when I know the details. If true, this officer is advised to get out of the business if he is afraid of the sidearm affixed to his belt.

University of Tennessee Wants It Both Ways

The University of Tennessee argues in court that it was under no obligation to protect a student who was disabled. But the institution also won't let students protect themselves. Sickening. Click on the post headline for the story about court arguments.

GRPC 2007 Session Tapings Available; 2008 In Phoenix Date To Be Set

If you didn't make it out to this year's national Gun Rights Policy Conference, or even if you did, you may be interested in audio recordings of the proceedings. Charles Heller coordinated the taping of all GRPC sessions, and information on these tapes are available at the Second Amendment Foundation GRPC web page. Go to: http://saf.org/default.asp?p=GRPC.

Also keep in mind that GRPC 2008 will be held in Phoenix, Ariz. The date is not set in stone, but organizers anticipate a Sept. 26-28, 2008 event. So put it in your calendar with a question mark. As soon as we know the exact date, I'll let you know here.

26 October 2007

Quote For The Weekend

"The gun-control movement is driven by raw emotion. Facts are irrelevant. Logic is spurned. Utter nonsense is solemnly intoned. It's little wonder that our most emotive president has made gun control his signature domestic issue."

-- Don Feder, former Boston Herald writer and politics/communications consultant

Author's Note: In case you didn't figure it out, the president Mr. Feder referred to when he wrote the above was Bill Clinton.

25 October 2007

Brady Campaign Is Lauding Joe Biden's 'Comprehensive' Crime Bill

Here it is again. The same old tired message. The same half-truths. Ban the so-called "assault weapons." And close the non-existent, so-called gun show loophole. The Brady Bunch's shrill message is unchanged. And not unexpectedly, they are applauding Sen. Joe Biden's latest proposed bill.

Here's an idea. If we have background checks for all firearms sold at gun shows, then I demand that there be background checks on all people who purchase an automobile in a private transaction. And driver's tests. All the used car ads in the nation's newspapers? No need to ban the advertisements . . . but there have to be background checks and drivers exams prior to any private transaction.

Why???? It's simple. Cars kill. Cars kill tens of thousands of people annually. To be specific, cars killed 43,443 people on the nation’s highways in 2005, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Using the argument of "reasonable" regulation (frequently used to advocate stricter gun control), and understanding the implications of these devastating statics, clearly no one can possibly argue against the reasonableness of holding automobile manufacturers responsible, and then ultimately banning cars altogether.


George Mason Annual Symposium on the Second Amendment

The recent Second Amendment symposium at the George Mason University School of Law brought scholars and activists on both sides of the gun debate together to talk about what will happen to gun rights in the next few years. The consensus was that while no one knows exactly what will happen, it may well be historic. Held on October 17, read the recap of the event from Sandy Froman, past president of the National Rifle Association, and member of the board of advisers for the law school.

A Comment On Comments

If you have attempted to comment on one of these posts, you might have noticed a statement that "commenting" is moderated. This is not to censor anyone. Far from it. I have received around a dozen emails asking about this. The information in this web log is for education, and to stimulate intellectually-honest discussion. Unfortunately, the way Blogger is set up, if I do not screen comments, spam comments will show up. You would be amazed at what was posted as comments early in the life of The Ready Line. Some was similar to the spam that fills your email in-box -- promoting everything from replica watches to organ "enhancement" pills to Nigerian government officials needing help moving money across international borders. There also are some presidential candidates who have leagues of net-savvy volunteers. These well-meaning people sometimes comment on everything in order to promote their favorite politician's name and website. Of most concern, some of the problem spam leaves malicious links that can be used to capture personal information from unwary readers. And, once on, comments -- no matter how malicious -- are virtually impossible to remove without deleting the entire post.

I don't like deleting posts. So, I initiated the screening process. You can leave an anonymous comment. Or leave your name. The bottom line is this . . . please feel free to comment on these posts, whether whether written by myself, other "irregular" contributors, or on the links to other stories discussing the Second Amendment and the basic human right of self defense. As I stated earlier, the purpose of The Ready Line is to facilitate an online discussion of truths, myths, real-life examples and the protection of that single amendment to the Bill of Rights that protects the other nine.

Thank you for your continued support.

Quote of the Day

"It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood."
-- James Madison

Mr. Madison made this statement in the late 1700s. What would he think if he saw the tens of thousands of firearms laws currently on the books. Or worse, today's U.S. tax code?

Ohio State Newspaper Doesn't Like Meaning of 'Empty Holster' Protest

The Lantern, the student newspaper at The Ohio State University (the paper where I worked in the late 1970s and early '80s when I was a student), editorialized on the "Empty Holster" protest taking place this week at the OSU campus and at colleges and universities across the U.S. Not surprisingly, the editors don't like what the protest stands for. Not suprisingly, students there who know the police can't shadow them 24 hours a day, don't like the editors' opinion. Read the editorial and comments back from members of the university community by clicking on this post's headline.

In-School Finger 'Scanning' Raises Privacy Dilemma

Not a firearms story, but a good privacy story. Parents and some students concerned about Orwellian program of "finger-scanning" -- in school. Click here for the story.

BTW, did you know that more than 60 percent of Americans have had their fingerprints taken? Its amazing how our world has changed. Times were when the only people who had been fingerprinted were people in the military, for identification purposes, and criminals.

24 October 2007

UK Gun Bans Lead To 'Knife Crime' . . . Which Leads To New Clothing Line

From the country that disarmed its law-abiding citizens -- and watched violent crime skyrocket as a result -- come two new products: stab-proof school uniforms and bullet-proof backpacks. Read it for yourself here.

If Its Not Global Warming, Its Probably Gun Owners' Fault

To the astonishment of reporters on Monday, Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid stated that global warming is partly responsible for the out-of-control fires spreading across California. He backed down somewhat when pressed on the issue.

One fire has been blamed on downed power lines, while officials say another is clearly a case of arson. But if politics were to continue to intrude, PETA would probably blame a hunters' campfire. If so, then Chuck Schumer can't be far behind. The New York senator's staffers seem to always be looking for concerns that can be blamed on gun ownership.

Quote For The Day . . .

"Crime is not fought by chasing it -- crime is only caught by chasing it. Crime is best fought by meeting it."

-- John Longenecker, former Los Angeles County paramedic, syndicated columnist and author.

Mitt Romney Coins New Phrase

And this guy says he can be a friend to firearms owners? GOP presidential wannabe Mitt Romney has coined a new phrase -- "Extreme Weapons." Um . . . I don't think he gets it.

More Stink in New York

A couple weeks ago I wrote of how while NYC Mayor Bloomberg is busy blaming other states' firearms laws for his own crime problem, that in his own backyard there was some serious stink a'brewing. Anti-gun NY Gov. Elliot Spitzer also knows that things are getting hot in his neighborhood and the police union in the New York state capitol is doing all it can to throw more egg on its own face.

Seems the illicit purchase of full-out machine guns by police in New York was looked at by BATF a few years ago. They passed on an investigation, though they will go to the ends of the Earth to prosecute a lawful firearms dealer who misspells a word. Here is the latest: The Albany Police Officers Union is attempting to shield from public scrutiny the names of officers who participated in the illegal purchases. Click here for the full story. David Codrea, who writes the blog War On Guns, has his take as well. Click here to read David's commentary on the matter.

Here's my opinion, for what it's worth: Mr. Bloomberg, Mr. Spitzer . . . your investigators should be turning their lenses inward toward the Empire State. You've got a huge mess in your own sandbox. Your credibility with respect to other states' gun laws is zero.

23 October 2007

NRA Certified Instructor Class Set For This Weekend In Columbus

PRO-Training, the education arm of Peoples Rights Organization, will hold a three-day NRA Instructor Training Workshop in Columbus, Ohio. The class, set for Friday, Oct. 26, Saturday, Oct. 27 and Sunday, Oct. 28, will take place at the the PRO-Training Education Center, 4444 Indianola Avenue. The class will provide the instruction necessary to apply for NRA teaching credentials in: Basic Pistol Marksmanship, Home Firearm Safety and Personal Protection in the Home. This is an intensive class and advance registration is REQUIRED. You do not need to bring firearms to this class. Click on the following link for registration information, or to sign-up online. http://www.centralohioccw.com

Ken Blackwell On Campus Gun Free Zones

Love him or hate him, Ken Blackwell has an interesting take on just about every subject. This time it is on college campuses being designated as gun-free zones. In light of the "Empty Holster" protests taking place all over the U.S. this week at college campuses, a May 18, 2007 post to Townhall.com from the former Ohio secretary of state and one-time Buckeye State gubernatorial candidate speaks volumes:

". . . Mandating college campuses be gun-free zones provides as much safety as holding your hands over your eyes."

Turkeys In Massachusettts

Some Massachusetts residents are unhappy that they have so many turkeys running around there. And they're NOT talking about politicians, for once. Read it here.

Empty Holster Protests on Ohio and U.S. Campuses Pick Up Steam

Protests of bans on lawful concealed carry at American college campuses is picking up. Student newspapers around the nation, and mainstream newspapers and television news outlets, are carrying stories of "The Empty Holster Protest," organized by a new national organization, Students For Concealed Carry on Campus.

Across the nation, students with concealed carry permits want to be allowed to carry their guns on campus. Using the Virginia Tech massacre as an example, they say students who met the requirements to carry a concealed firearm could have changed the outcome that day. The empty holsters they are wearing every day this week while they attend classes signifies how lawmakers have denied them a means of protection.

Coverage in the Buckeye State is starting. The Columbus Dispatch has coverage of the issue, where, interestingly, while the Ohio State assistant police chief, Rick Amweg, says he thinks its best to have trained law enforcement officers as the only people armed on campus, he understands the protest.

Here is a story from the University of Akron's Buchtelite newspaper. University of Cincinnati Sophomore Michael Filtcraft told the local CBS affiliate, WKRC, in a recent report that taking away students' weapons leaves them helpless in an attack. "Obviously criminals don't pay attention to laws, that's why they're criminals. So, taking innocent people and disarming them, leaves them no effective means of resistance to see their family at the end of the day." Click here to see the television report. At college campuses near and far the protest is getting ink. Here is coverage from the Daily Collegian of Penn State, and coverage from the O'Collegian at Oklahoma State University. WBKO television in Bowling Green, Ky., an ABC affiliate, has a story and video about the protest taking place at Western Kentucky University.

As for the comment from the Ohio State University police spokesman, I would remind Assistant Chief Amweg that criminals on and adjacent to his campus are frequently armed. While concealed carry in Ohio is a privilege, self defense is a basic human right. THAT is why students who have passed through numerous legal hoops to legally carry a concealed sidearm are more than just a little frustrated. Their right to self defense is being denied on campus.

Dave Kopel: Medellin and the Second Amendment

Once again I showcase a Dave Kopel analysis. I've never asked him when we bump into each other each year during the Gun Rights Policy Conference, but Dave Kopel has got to be one hell of a chess player. Like myself, he sees Second Amendment issues "several moves ahead" of the current "game," if you will. Dave has written a tremendous, and disturbing piece, for the Volokh Conspiracy blog. In it, he examines how the Bush administration's argument before the Supreme Court that a President can issue orders requiring the execution of a treaty -- which by its own terms is expressly not self-executing -- has profound dangers for the Second Amendment. Click on the post headline for his full analysis.

22 October 2007

The DC Firearm Ban, The Supreme Court, And Institutionalized Bigotry

The Independence Institute's David Kopel makes the case that the District of Columbia’s institutionalized history of incompetence, corruption and bigotry is the very reason for its prohibition of Second Amendment rights—and for its status as the murder capital of the United States. From America's 1st Freedom magazine, Sept. 2007. In PDF.

Latest GOP Squabble: Who Is Most Conservative?

Debating the issues at the latest in this endless debate season, republican candidates jockeying for the nomination to run for president are now locked in an "I'm a better conservative than you" phase. Click on the post headline for the details.

Time To Ban The Crowbars

Registration or ban? Perhaps a cooling-off/waiting period between crowbar purchase and possession? Read about the rampage at a Rhode Island Dunkin Donuts drive-through. Click on the post headline for the full story.

As Seen In Cleveland's Plain Dealer

A letter writer's argument in the Oct. 17 edition of the Plain Dealer newspaper.

Headline: "Bill of Rights isn't up for revision -- or deletion"

". . . And if you think all politicians are in favor of your freedoms ... a few quotes from Bill Clinton

"If the personal freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution inhibit the government's ability to govern the people, we should look to limit those guarantees.

We can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans. -- Bill Clinton USA Today--3-11-93, page 2a

Now some people want his wife to run things. Scary thought." To see the full letter, click here.

Group Touts 'Guitars, Not Guns' For Foster, At-Risk Kids

Okay, here's a new one. In a bid to keep at-risk kids from turning to crime, a Florida organization is giving away free guitars. "Guitars, Not Guns" is trying out its program in Lake Worth, Fla. GNG is currently operating donation programs in nine states and has a bunch of corporate sponsors.

21 October 2007

PRO-Gun Republican, Son of Indian Immigrants, Wins Lousiana Governorship

Bobby Jindal, the 36-year-old immigrant son of parents who came to the United States from India, has won the governor's race in Lousiana with 53 percent of the vote. This pro-gun republican, a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, defeated two multi-millionaires who had lobbied hard for the office. He ran for the office four years ago but lost to Kathleen Blanco. Blanco, a democrat, decided not to run for re-election in the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina fiasco, where Blanco's office is blamed for poor management of the rebuilding process acorss the state. Jindal is probably best known as the sponsor of a bill in Congress, later passed into law and signed by President George W. Bush, that prohibits law enforcement authorities from confiscating firearms from otherwise law abiding individuals during a state of emergency. Several states have passed similar laws, based in Jindal's model language. Ohio lawmakers are considering such a bill. These laws are the direct result of thousands of New Orleans-area residents being disarmed, their self-defense firearms confiscated and in some instances, destroyed, during the days that followed Hurricane Katrina. Read the full story from the Associated Press.

Thought For The Day

"After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it."

— 1992, William Burroughs, famed American novelist, essayist and social critic.

20 October 2007

If Birth Control Pills Are OK For School Teens, Why Not Firearms and Firearms Education?

Final thought for the weekend . . .

In the still turbulant wake of an announcement by Portland, Maine's Board of Education to allow a middle school health clinic to issue kids birth control pills, I had some thoughts. Specifically, if you have followed the news, the argument put forth by proponents of this controversial measure boils down to one thing -- kids are going to have sex, they are having sex, so we may as well do something to keep them safe and help prevent teen pregnancies. That, in a nutshell, is their message. Now a lot of parents around the nation are in an uproar. But a significant percentage of parents and so-called "experts" support the notion. Interesting . . .

Alright. I propose the following: Kids like to pretend to use guns. Kids are getting guns, kids are going to get guns. Kids are going to use guns. Remember, according to gun control advocates, guns are practically lying around everywhere just waiting to be picked up and used in a criminal manner (take a look at their websites -- it is the theme of most). So, we may as well do something to keep young people safe, teach them responsible firearms safety rules, and keep them from shooting each other.

Therefore, utilizing the same argument as proponents of the birth control measure, I put forth that the school boards of our school systems need to provide firearms and firearm safety classes. Am I serious? Well, providing firearms is an intriguing thought. Yet schools have trouble taking care of other educational tools, such as band instruments. So they might not have the means to do so. Unless, like volunteer band managers who maintain woodwind, brass and percussion instruments, schools could recruit volunteer gunsmiths from the student population to help keep firearms clean, properly lubricated and in working order (it would teach a still needed trade, too). Hmmm . . . a real conundrum.

But firearms safety training is a given, a real no-brainer. It is no different than swimming lessons that help prevent kids from drowning; like fire safety that keeps kids from playing with matches; like Red Cross training that teaches young people to perform CPR and save a choking victim, or a drowning victim, or a heart attack victim.

Still, what makes this discussion even more serious is the irony of it all. Keep in mind that the very same well-meaning people who believe they are doing work that no one else thinks about, that of keeping kids safe, and in this case are urging schools to provide condoms, lessons on using condoms, and birth control pills to our kids . . . are the people who vehemently protest the mere mention of providing firearms safety education to young people -- training that saves lives each and every day.

Confusing, isn't it?

Those Who Forget Their History

Mike M., author of the Smokeless Powder blog, wrote recently on those seem to forget their history -- which is OUR history. In doing so, he reviewed some of the words from the Framers of the U.S. Constitution . . . words truly worth re-reading on this beautiful weekend.

The Ready Line Inaugural Commentary on the Urban Shooter Podcast

Commentary from The Ready Line made its debut today on this week's Urban Shooter podcast, episode No. 40. In this week's program, Kenn Blanchard spends a great deal of time talking about justice, race and color in America, news that superhero Captain America is returning to the pages of Marvel Comics, but with a twist -- he is armed. Plus, this author is featured with commentary on Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's signing of the highly controversial ammunition microstamping bill. Kenn has been gracious enough to invite me to periodically submit commentary on politics, rights and firearms issues for his widely popular program. We are delighted to help out and truly honored to have been invited to contribute.

19 October 2007

Defining A 'Loophole'

You've heard activists of various stripes continually use the word "loophole" to complain about some law they don't like, right? Here is the best definition of the word I've seen yet, as seen on the Keep and Bear Arms.com website:

Loophole -- "Tyrant-speak for some small bit of freedom which has not yet been legislated out of existence."

Nicely written.

Marvel Brings Back Captain America . . . And He's Armed!

Marvel Comics' Captain America is coming back! And get this . . . now he'll be carrying a sidearm! Interestingly, there are a few disturbing portions of the piece, but then consider the source -- it appeared this week in the Washington Post. One oddity is the statement from the Marvel Comics' executive editor who compares the persona of CA to a police officer or FBI agent, who is "authorized in particular circumstances to use deadly force if necessary." Hmmm. I haven't looked at comic books in decades, but I always interpreted the persona of Captain America as representing "everyman," so to speak, but not government, law enforcement or the military. He was about individual good and reason taking on crime and evil, particularly on behalf of those who could not be helped by the authorities.

The story includes a recap of how the Captain America character was murdered earlier this year ago in the pages of Marvel Comics when the government required all those with superhuman abilities to register with the government and unmask themselves. Here is where the writer of the story seems to have an unusual viewpoint on government oversight. A civil war in the Marvel universe ultimately ensued. Several superheroes complied with the order to register and unmask. Here is how the Post author looks at it . . . "Captain America, however, believed it was a violation of his civil liberties to be forced to reveal his civilian identity and led the rebellion against the law. Talk about a metaphor for the battles of our day. Can anyone out there say Patriot Act? When he finally went to surrender -- fearing the war was taking too great a toll on innocent bystanders -- he was whacked, blown away on his way to the courthouse."

This is hardly a metaphor for the Patriot Act? Granted I have my objections to portions of that hastily passed law. If anything, however, the storyline shows government run amok and registering everything, including people. If anything, it is indicative of the dangers of government control over individual self-reliance. If you really think about it, the government's insistence that superheroes register with the government is not unlike those inside and outside government today who insist that all guns be registered. If you know the true identity of the person behind the mask (who is helping the helpless), or where the gun is located, you have control over the populace. Self-reliance and independence gives way to the nanny state.

Regardless of your interpretation of the Marvel superheroes civil war, catch the full story of the return of Captain America in "The Good Guy With A Gun".

Dallas Reporter Suspended For Her Actions In 'Ambush Interview' of 70-Year-Old Man

In Dallas, a television news reporter has been suspended after angry viewers deluged the station with calls, letters and emails complaining of "ambush interview" of a 70-year-old man who, for the second time in three weeks, had fired his gun in self defense at his junkyard, where he happens to make his home. In each case, the intruder died. The reporter alleged in the tape that the elderly gentleman is a trigger happy person who wanted to shoot someone. This elicited an outcry from Dallas-area residents. On the KDFW website, the story can be viewed but the videotape has been taken down. Click here for the details.

To Make The World A Safer Place For . . . ?

The cable show Half Hour News Hour ticked a lot of people off during its short run earlier this year. Probably because it joyfully spoofed media bias like no other. Here is an "interview" from the show discussing the need for a complete ban on private firearm ownership.

From The UK

Police in Britain have announced that lawfully owned firearms will be confiscated and destroyed if gun owners do not renew their registration papers on time. And police now are no longer notifying owners that renewals are coming due. It's up to the gun owner. So if you forget . . . too bad. Click on the headline of this post for the full story.

Has 'Bloggergate' Ensnared Hillary?

The question of paid bloggers has always tarnished this medium. First we saw it in business -- bloggers trashing a product or company, only to find out they are paid by a competitor or competitor's PR company to do so. Now, it appears politics is not immune (not that anyone dreamed it would be). Hillary Clinton is being drawn into a bit of a blogging fiasco. Some of the blogs in question are anti-gun. Click on the post headline for the full story.

Author's Note: No one pays for this blog. Just me . . . through my time away from work and what little time I find for relaxation.

18 October 2007

Make Your Own Gun-Free Zone!

You want to be safe? Set up your own gun-free zone! At least that's what the anti-self-defense crowd wants you to think. Here is an "example" (smirk) of the "safety" (eyes rolling) offered by such "zones (yeah, right)." Courtesy of The Firearms Coalition, and the now-defunct Half-Hour News Hour.

Another Anti-Gun Journalist Finally Gets It

Matt Petryni, a columnist at the Oregon Daily Emerald, the independent student newspaper at the University of Oregon, has penned an interesting piece this week on how, after thinking it through, he believes the individual right to keep and bear arms is necessary. Early last week, I wrote of another liberal writer and scholar, Jonathan Turley, who also has had a change of heart on this issue. I love when trends like these bunch together. While I disagree with Mr. Petryni's thoughts on firearms for self defense and hunting, he tried to back up his opinions with more background. Though he does have the hunting position incorrect (there IS a need for hunting for conservation purposes, if not for food, in this nation), he has thought the purpose for the Framers' words all the way through. Click on the headline of this post for his full commentary, which appeared in the ODE's October 16 edition.

JPFO Columnist: If You Act Like A Serf, You Will Be Treated Like A Serf

Powerful commentary from columnist Larken Rose, who is now writing for Jews for the Preservation of Firearm Ownership. Click on the post headline for the full opinion piece.

Ohio Media Focuses Lenses On House Bill To Ban Persons Under 21 From Carrying Firearms

Well, yesterday was an interesting day at the Ohio General Assembly. I was up in northern Ohio on business and could not attend, but media attention in the Buckeye State was not on a Senate bill that would finally legislate that lawful people have no duty to retreat from an attack on the street or in their home. The TV media, and to a lesser degree some print outlets, focused their lenses on a bill introduced with great fanfare and urgency in the Ohio House of Representatives that would prohibit a person under the age of 21 from carrying a firearm except for hunting. I received a call from WBNS-TV (CBS) in Columbus yesterday. Mistakenly, I assumed they wanted to discuss the "castle doctrine/no duty to retreat" bill testimony that was heard in the morning. They knew nothing about it. They only wanted to talk about the House bill. A bill that, as I analyze it, appears to do nothing more than that which is already covered under existing state and federal laws. Unfortunately, I was unable to get back in touch with WBNS, being out in the field on business and unable to obtain a cell signal for 3 hours due to my location. Fortunately, Ken Hanson of Buckeye Firearms Association gave virtually the same rebuttal I would have. Nicely done, Ken!

Well, where to begin. I'll let others comment, and let you see what has been written. The Columbus Dispatch and Cincinnati papers did not cover it, nor did the Plain Dealer in Cleveland. The PD, however, runs a blog called "Wide Open," and one of the blog writers (not affiliated with the paper) who bills himself as "Ohio's premier political blogger," wrote about the bill. Several comments posted to his blog have gone unanswered. I think you'll see why, but as a hint . . . there are several of questions he probably doesn't have an answer for, or does not want to answer. Electronic media in Ohio did stories on this bill. Here is an example of some of the coverage.

I'll have more on this in the coming days. My initial thinking is that this will go no where in the Ohio legislature, since thinking people will realize that the legislation, as stated before, is redundant. The bills backers told reporters that they think it has a less than 50 percent chance of passage. Moreover, I don't believe Gov. Ted Strickland, a democrat who campaigned on a pro-gun platform, would sign such a bill. I've been wrong before, but Mr. Strickland is a rational individual whom I believe will see through the blatant politics of this proposal. Time will tell.

16 October 2007

REMINDER: Wednesday Hearing in Ohio Senate on Castle Doctrine/No Duty To Retreat Bill

Senate Bill 184, Ohio's so-called "Castle Doctrine" bill, has its first hearing on Wednesday, October 16, in the Ohio General Assembly before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Criminal Justice. Go to the Buckeye Firearms Association overview of this bill, which more appropriately should be called "No Duty To Retreat" legislation. The companion legislation in the Ohio House of Representatives is House Bill 264. The Senate Committee hearing, which will feature sponsor-only testimony from Sen. Steve Buehrer, starts at 10:15 am. Committee Chair Tim Grendell is a friend of Peoples Rights Organization and Buckeye Firearms Association. He is expected to push for approval of this long-overdue, common sense legislation. If you can, stop down to the Ohio Statehouse to show your support of this citizen safety legislation.

Being Armed Saved Many Armenians

Dave Kopel, Paul Gallant and Joanne Eisen have penned an extraordinary look at the conflict between Armenians and the Ottoman-Turk Empire at the early part of the past century. The U.S. House of Representatives recently created an international incident by passing a resolution condeming the turks for this dark period in world history. Whether or not you agree with Congress' motives for the resolution, one thing is for sure -- Kopel and company make a very compelling argument that being armed help save the lives of countless Armenians. Click on the headline of this post to go to the entire story.

'Money, Guns & God'

Conde Nast Portfolio has a perplexing piece in its October 2007 edition on the Unification Church, a profile of one of the sons of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, Justin Moon, and his founding of Kahr Arms. It is written by an admittedly anti-gun New Yorker (why do magazines continue to send writers who are afraid of guns to cover gun stories?). I'm not sure whether they are attacking the "moonies" or guns (well, they definitely are attacking guns), or worse, shamelessly trying to scare readers into believing that not only are guns bad, but that the young man who may one day head the Unification Church owns a gun factory. Click on the post headline to read the entire story, which discusses the founding of Kahr, Moon's far-flung empire, and lawsuits by the Brady Campaign.

Gun Rights Advocates Podcast Links To The Ready Line

The Gun Rights Advocates podcast has added a link to The Ready Line on its main website (www.gunrights.us.) The GRA podcast is put together by Mark Vanderberg. Thanks, Mark, for the add. I have added a link to his podcast on this site, as well.

CNN's Erica Hill and Glenn Beck Discuss Arming Teachers

Video of 9 October 2007 debate/discussion on CNN about school safety, future school designs, and the Oregon teacher who wants to carry her concealed firearm (she has a license to carry) in the school while she is teaching. Click here to view.

Impossible: NYC Has Some of the Most Draconian Gun Laws in Nation

New York City may have some of the most draconian gun laws in the nation, and these restrictions often prevent law abiding citizens from keeping tools on hand that could save their lives. But that doesn't prevent NYC's Mayor Mike from blaming others. Outrage is growing in Brooklyn and elsewhere as random shootings injure children. Bloomberg has a crime problem, but continues to blame it on firearms manufacturers, firearms dealers and other states, and of course the federal government -- but NOT on the criminals in his own city. Read more here.

Thank Goodness Most of New York Has Gun Control

Man is badly beaten with a karaoke machine, then has his ear bitten off. Read it here.

15 October 2007

Urban Shooter Podcast Asks Ready Line Author To Become A Contributor

This is very cool. Kenn Blanchard, the voice behind The Urban Shooter podcast, has asked this blog's author to become a contributor to his weekly online broadcast. We've already contributed one piece of commentary, regarding Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's signing of the ammunition micro-stamping bill. Thanks Kenn for your kind invitation! More to come . . .

'The Gun Shots' Blog Offers A Lot

Here's another really great blog to check out. It's called The Gun Shots, and is published daily by the people at Outdoor Life magazine. Click here to take a look!

NRA To Launch Second Hunting Website, This Time About 'Rights'

The NRA is launching a second hunting-related website and organization, this time known as NRAhunterrights.org. It is is response to stepped up attacks on hunting around the nation. An earlier hunting oriented organization, FREEHunters has been around for a few years but focuses more on the sport, tactics, feature stories, etc. NRAhunterrights will focus on what the anti-gun, anti-hunting, anti-trapping crowd (they all work together, you know) is doing to make it harder to hunt, or to embarrass people who hunt.

14 October 2007

Gov. 'Arnold' Opens Floodgates With Approval of Microstamping Legislation

While all of California and the United States continued to be fixated on who's Left Coast home will be searched next in the truth for how Anna Nicole Smith got all those prescriptions that were in her body when she died, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger this weekend quietly signed more than 100 bills -- the most newsworthy among the anti-self defense crowd being the nation's first law requiring semiautomatic handguns sold there "to leave a unique imprint on bullets that are fired."

The ramifications of this bill signing run deep. Anti-gunners have not been getting their way and talk about their issues among the candidates running for president has been almost nil. National polls show there is not much interest in new gun control laws. But this action will breathe new life into the anti self-defense crowd's tired message. This new process, to be based on admittedly unreliable technology, is being described as giving police "another way to try to link shootings to the criminals who carry them out." The San Francisco Chronicle says this bill is one of more than 100 that Schwarzenegger has signed this weekend, including banning toxic plastic softeners in toys for toddlers, blessing the sale of kangaroo-skin soccer shoes and purses, and whacking artery-clogging trans fats in school cafeterias and vending machines.

He also had vetoed more than 50 bills since Saturday. This should have been one of them, for the floodgates will now be open to export this technological "solution" to crime to every other state in the U.S. The Crime Gun Identification Act, authored by California Assemblyman Mike Feuer, a democrat from Los Angeles, forces gun sellers by 2010 to use so-called microstamping technology to imprint characters that reveal a gun's make, model and serial number on bullet casings. It applies only to semiautomatic pistols sold in California. Opponents of the measure, who actually know something about firearms, said the technology was unreliable and could be countered by gun users, and they raised the prospect of criminals dropping shell casings from other guns at a crime scene to confuse police.

2010? If this were such a vital piece of crime-fighting legislation it would be going into effect in 30-90 days. Police would be demanding it go into effect now. But it isn't really about fighting crime, is it?

In his signing message, Schwarzenegger said he understands the technology is not perfect, but hopes it would give police a new tool in solving violent crimes. Under the gun bill, every semiautomatic handgun sold in California will have to "microstamp" each "bullet cartridge" (whatever that means -- I'm assuming one on the cartidge case and another somewhere on the bullet?) in two locations whenever it is fired. The stamp would identify the gun's make, model and serial number. It does not affect revolvers, rifles or shotguns. It targets only semiautomatics, which Assemblyman claims are used in the majority of homicides committed with firearms.

A hearty, Midwestern, common-sense NO-thanks to Gov. Terminator for helping a vocal minority get more ink on this subject and give credibility to a technology riddled with problems that can put innocent people in jail. And while proponents say it does not affect revolvers, rifles or shotguns, I would suggest that we add two words to their reassurances, those being "for now."

Frankly, I believe "the Governator" would strenuously object if he were forced to use a certain, unreliable, unrefined technology to keep him safe during a dangerous scene while making a movie. Or even object to being forced to use unreliable technology to shoot and edit a movie. Now before anyone whines that "movies don't kill people," let me ask a question. Did you see "Yentyl?" I mean, Barbara Streisand's disaster of a flick practically had people wanting to kill themselves after they suffered through that turkey of a film.

Click here to read more about this "only from the minds of Californians" legislation.

13 October 2007

'Gun Politics' Links to The Ready Line

The Ready Line has been added as a link to Gun Politics. Thank you Scott Lefevre! Scott's blog focuses on whether gun control is about guns, or control. In return, I have added Scott's Gun Politics forum as a link to this weblog.

Dealing with Jesse Jackson, ATF and NYC's 'Mayor Mike'

The final day of last weekend's 2007 Gun Rights Policy Conference featured a session on how the federal Bureau of Alchohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Jesse Jackson and NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg are targeting firearms dealers in questionable witch hunts that more frequently ensnare honest business people. Well, someone videotaped this session and posted it to the Gun Owners Against Violence website. Click on the headline of this post to go to the GOAV site, and view the video. The tape is a little grainy and the sound is a little difficult, but the message is quite compelling.

Senate To Hear Sponsor Testimony on Ohio Castle Doctrine/No Duty To Retreat Bill

Senate Bill 184, Ohio's so-called "Castle Doctrine" bill, has its first hearing this coming week on Wednesday in the Ohio General Assembly before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Criminal Justice. Go to the Buckeye Firearms Association overview of this bill, which more appropriately should be called "No Duty To Retreat" legislation. The companion legislation in the Ohio House of Representatives is House Bill 264. The Senate Committee hearing, which will feature sponsor-only testimony from Sen. Steve Buehrer, starts at 10:15 am. Committee Chair Tim Grendell is a friend of firearms owners and is expected to push for approval of this long-overdue, common sense legislation. If you can, stop down to the Ohio Statehouse to show your support of this citizen safety legislation.

12 October 2007

Some Thoughts Heading Into the Weekend . . .

Some nuggets to ponder as we head into the weekend. An observation by Thomas Sowell, with commentary by the late Col. Jeff Cooper:

"The desire to order people around and make them conform to one's own vision takes many forms." - Thomas Sowell

"Which emphasizes the great difference between those of us who are activist gun owners and other "extremists" who devote themselves to causes. Unlike the zealots who agitate for other causes, from tobacco bans to bunny hugging, we shooters have no wish to push other people around. Our major desire is that they leave us alone. It is odd that nobody has mentioned that difference before."

- Col. Cooper

Mayoral 'Wanna-be' Bill Todd's Commercials Have Tongues Wagging

Mayor Mike Coleman's minions in the Columbus, Ohio media are beginning to write about how "awful" mayoral challenger Bill Todd's new advertisement is. Read what Columbus Dispatch columnist Ann Fisher has to say about the Todd promotions by clicking on this post's headline. The commercials feature the sound of a woman whimpering, and the sound of gunfire, to illustrate the crime problems that have festered in Ohio's largest city. Todd drew flack from Coleman at a Columbus Metropolitan Club debate last week by saying that criminals -- and not enough cops on the street -- are the problem, not guns. Coleman, in a monotone, stated that he feels guns are everywhere, and too easy to get, and THAT is the reason for crime. (Note to Mr,. Coleman: Abercrombie & Fitch, Western Auto, Sears, and local hardware stores no longer carry firearms. THOSE were the days when guns were easy to find.)

Coleman, facing the first challenge in years to his post during an election campaign, is having to spend big bucks to run commercials. I wouldn't say Coleman's campaign is scared, for Todd has a long way to go to win Election Night. But Camp Coleman is being forced to spend money early that it would rather keep in the coffers until just prior to the campaign.

As for Todd's commercials? People are talking about them. And that is what Todd wants.

Note: Columnist Fisher has posted to her blog responses from readers about her column.

Rudy To Speak To Anti-Gun Police "Association" This Weekend

Tomorrow begins the three-day annual meeting of the so-called International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) in New Orleans. The vehemently anti-gun IACP. And the keynote speaker of the IACP Foundation dinner/fundraiser is none other than presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani. The same Rudy Giulani who is busy courting Second Amendment supporters in a bid to overcome years of advocating harsh gun controls.

Now one might think it merely a coincidence . . . but facts, they are troublesome.

IACP earlier this year published a scathing report on gun violence, calling for controls, confiscations and registration of virtually everything that makes for a fun hour, or weekend, at the range. National media went "ga-ga" over the report, gushing about how police feel guns need to be controlled in the U.S. But what most people don't know is that the Joyce Foundation, which funds many anti-gun crusades, helped write the IACP report. More specifically, it appears that the Joyce Foundation's public relations agency of record -- Valerie Denney Communications -- wrote the report from cover-to-cover.

Yep, the International Association of Chiefs of Police has been bought and paid for by the Joyce Foundation. And new gun supporter Rudy Guliani is going to be their keynote speaker at their major annual fundraiser this weekend. What will his message be????

POSTSCRIPT -- The Ohio Coalition Against Handgun Violence, headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, is virtually bought and paid for by the Joyce Foundation. Ditto the organizations Ceasefire New Jersey and Ceasefire Pennsylvania, which act as storefronts for the Joyce Foundation in that part of the U.S. More than just a disturbing trend, isn't it?

Empty Holster Protests Planned For U.S. College Campuses

Students For Concealed Carry on Campus, a new national grassroots groups with chapters springing up all over the nation, is planning a national demonstration during the week of October 22-26. Click here for details. Students plan to attend classes wearing empty holsters in protest of state laws and campus policies that stack the odds in favor of armed killers. The organization also has posted a well written position paper on objection handling -- answers to the most common arguments or objections to students being lawfully armed while on a campus property.

Dr. John Lott On Pediatricians Stepping Over The Line

Scholar extraordinaire John Lott has an intriguing piece about pediatricians stepping over the line with intrusive, and inappropriate questions, of their patients -- kids -- about whether their parents keep a gun in the home. This is a significant "boundary violation" on the part of physicians. Their interest is not to show their concern about guns in the home, but to place doubt about their parents lawful ownership of firearms in the minds of impressionable youngsters. As Lott says in his headline, "Guns Don't Kill Kids, Irresponsible Adults With Guns Do."

Dr. Timothy Wheeler of Doctors For Responsible Gun Ownership, has some solutions if this ever happens to you. He has spoken and written on this subject numerous times on the issue of boundary violations. This will continue to be a problem, unfortunately, unless parents call the doctors on the carpet, so to speak, with local and state medical boards. Please note that Dr. Wheeler in his remarks also, as a last resort, speaks to writing to the California Medical Board. Obviously, we don't all live in California.

Author's Note: The last time my physician asked me if I had picked up any hobbies that are dangerous, like extreme motorcycling or extreme skiing, etc., I reminded him that I am still a shooter. He smiled and said, "oh that's okay . . . you wear hearing protection, don't you?"

11 October 2007

Fantastic Video, Music To Start The Weekend

Yes, I know it's only Friday (well actually its nearly midnight Thursday). Still, for many the weekend starts on Friday. And this vid really pulls at the heartstrings of everyone I know who has seen it. It is not about firearms or politics. It features performance artist Michael Israel, whose performance is called, aptly, "Michael Israel's Art In Concert." You have to see it . . . a description from me would not do it justice. So sit back for a few minutes, and watch this artistic genius on stage, accompanied by a couple of very popular songs. If you have even a hint of a patriotic bone in your body, it will give you chills and make you sit up and take notice. Click on the post headline to see the video, which is posted to YouTube.

The Ready Line Now Cross-Linked on PRO, Firearms Coalition, and Ohio CCW Sites

The Ready Line is now cross-linked on three more sites: The Peoples Rights Organization (PRO) website (http://www.peoplesrights.org/) ; the Firearms Coalition website (http://www.firearmscoalition.org/), and PRO-Training's Ohio CCW training website (http://www.centralohioccw.com/).

Contradictions, Like Facts, Are Funny Things

Irony . . . contradictions . . . they are truly funny things.

It is not unexpected that the gun banners are already talking about more stringent gun laws in the wake of the school shooting in Cleveland yesterday. Yet if you look in to this story more closely you learn from news reports that the school apparently had neglected to hire a security person to replace someone who had left the institution. You learn that the metal detectors at school entrances were used, according to news reports, sporadically. You learn that this kid, despite all his troubles, had repeatedly threatened other students quite vocally about killing people and burning the building. Thankfully, no one died as a result of his actions, though he took his own life. Still, in this gun-free -- supposedly safe -- zone, this kid got into what may have been an unsecure building and caused the tragedy.

And yet . . .

A college student at a institution of higher education affiliated with a church has been suspended for merely raising the question about the campus ban on concealed firearms. He also has been ordered to undergo a mental health examination before he can resume his education. The college, Hamline University in St. Paul, Minn., says the student's emails were "threatening." The student contacted the Foundation for Individual Rights In Education (FIRE), which has been in touch with the college on behalf of the individual.

The contradictions . . . they keep 'a-coming. Still developing . . .

Voice Of America Comments on Potential Lifting of Gun Ban in D.C.

The Voice of America takes a look at Washington D.C. as pro-self-defense and anti-gun activists gear up for what is expected to be a review of a major case in the District of Columbia. At stake -- the high court finally ruling on whether the 2A is an individual or collective right. Click on the post headline for the full VOA story.

Mayor Bloomberg Should Focus On Gun Scandals In His Own Sandbox

There is a "missing machine gun" scandal brewing in the New York state capitol of Albany, and Second Amendment Foundation is calling NYC Mayor Mike out. Their argument is that he is spending time bullying people in other states when in his own backyard there are . . . shall we say . . . some "irregularities" that prosecutors and police wish the public knew nothing about. Click on the headline of this post for the SAF news release.

10 October 2007

A Closing Thought On The Day

Here is a closing thought for the day. The words are from Col. Jeff Cooper, the marksman, teacher and eloquent, but plain spoken writer.

"Those citizens, both salesmen and customers, who quibble about the cost of guns seem to have lost sight of an important element in the discussion. It is this: a firearm is a permanent posession. Unlike almost anything else you can name, a good gun which you acquired in your youth will last you throughout your lifetime and that of your child. Seen in that light, your personal firearm can hardly ever be "too expensive." A steak dinner is too expensive. A bottle of champagne is too expensive. But not your gun. In a short time those other things will exist only in your memory, but if you take care of it your gun will be as good as it was the first day you touched it. That is the reason why the feeling we shooters have for our weapons approaches the mystic. Those other people do not understand this. We would explain it to them if they would listen."

Cleveland School Shooting Being Investigated

A shooting at the SuccessTech school in Cleveland today left the 14-year old shooter dead, and four others -- two adults and two teenagers-- wounded. Early reports are indicating the youth was troubled, had been suspended on Monday for fighting and was not even supposed to be in the school. Early reports from police say some of the victims appear to have been targeted. I'm sure we're going to be hearing more on this, including from the Brady Bunch and others. My prayers go out to the families of the wounded and the assailant. I have no doubt there will be calls for more gun control, even though schools are already gun-free zones in which criminals have free reign and no one is permitted the tools to stop this criminality and carnage. Maybe one day teachers and/or administrators will receive the authority to take care of these problems instead of waiting for police to save them all. Maybe . . .

Brother Cuddy On The Framers, Citizenship, and Responsibility

When Jude Cuddy, whom I referenced in a couple of earlier posts, gets on a roll, he gets on a roll! A close friend, he is a family man who generally keeps to himself, indulges in his long-time passion for competitive shooting, and is a true contributor to society. But when Jude finds time to write, his passion for our independence is matched by few. He shared the following with me today and I want to share it with you.

"Here are my thoughts from behind the berm:

'Education, Citizenship and Responsibility'

"It is always said that when you are discussing the star athlete who wants to break into the professional ranks that this individual would do well to remain in school - as it will "serve you the rest of your life." Athletic skill is fleeting, and you are only one play away from ending your career.

"This is the education we all owe ourselves regardless of our chosen endeavor. The skills that "cannot be taken away." As citizens of this great republic, we must all be engaged and informed. Being a good citizen in the privacy of your home is not practicing good citizenship. Being involved in civil discourse, voting, knowing who represents you, etc ., are all part of the process. Without such knowledge you can and will be led around by the nose.

"Take the basic concept of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Everyone has a duty and obligation to defend the life bestowed upon them. A reasonable man (and women are certainly inclusive) should venture into the world prepared to protect this gift. The "State" has no obligation to protect individuals, only the community at large. So it is up to you. Being conditioned to call 9-1-1 when you are in a pickle is not being responsible to yourself and your family. Abdicating your personal safety to a public servant is not sound.

"The thinking athlete knows the education he obtained will serve him over the course of a lifetime - long after he ceases to throw, catch and run. A citizen should also embrace his education - in civics, in language, in the manipulation of firearms. Consider it a life skill, such as swimming, riding a bike or navigating small watercraft. This cannot be taken away, and our friends who are fearful of those who "keep and bear" arms realize as much. They are jealous with rage you have an education in firearms, and indignant about your efforts to master the subject.

"Their aim is to relieve you of the instruments that enable you to exercise this duty - the textbooks, if you will, of an education in firearms. The skills to engage a given target in a matter of seconds - the adage that "If you can see it you can hit it" does not sit well with the socialists in this country. If you have these skills you are considered a liability and a menace to the agenda of certain political "leaders." With the ability to defend yourself you are not so easy to manipulate.

"The Framers could see into the future as they studied all forms of governance throughout history, adopting the best of each. They also mixed in some hard facts about human nature and the tendencies of those in power to abuse their position. Put citizenship into practice. Learn how to shoot - an education that "cannot be taken away." Not only will it serve you for your lifetime, but it will effectively counter the only true enemy of firearms -- rust and politicians."

Jude T. Cuddy

Amen, Brother . . . Amen.

Two Intriguing Blog Links Added To 'The Ready Line'

I have added links to two very interesting and insightful blogs in the past 24 hours. They are: David Codrea's War On Guns, and American Citizen Soldier. Check them out when you have time.

Ted Nugent Describes How Gun Owners Will Suffer If Hillary Is Elected Prez

On Monday, national radio host Glenn Beck had as one of his guests legendary rock and roll guitarist -- AND legendary Second Amendment supporter -- Ted Nugent. It was a great interview. Nugent leads off the conversation with the following: "I'm calling you from a beautiful Texas campfire at a hunting camp here in Albany, Texas, campfires, cops, heroes, military, plumbers, welders and teachers and ranchers and guitar players and we all carry guns and we can't imagine how a human being of consciousness, a human being of goodwill and decency and certainly independence and knowledge and an understanding of good over evil would ever go forth in this world in a known and intentional unarmed helplessness." Click on the headline of this post to read the full transcript. Its enlightening, and of course, entertaining as only Ted Nugent can be.

If You Fight Bloomburg's Investigations, He Calls You "Sick"

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomburg, whose razor thin excuses for screwing up federal investivations to run his own so-called gun sting operations continue to confuse, has fallen back on the old solution when you have run out of ammunition in your argument -- start the name calling. Have you heard how Mayor Mike (not to be confused with Columbus' Mayor Mike) refers to individuals who have been targeted by his legally questionable multi-state investigations, and who fight back? "These are sick people," he says. Really! Thanks for Ryan Horsley for bringing this to the attention of Firearms Coalition readers, and David Codrea for posting it on his The War On Guns blog.

09 October 2007

New Big Darby Shooting Range Targeted By Supposedly Super-Secret Research Facility

Battelle, the giant research organization based in Columbus, Ohio, and inventor (or improver) of such things as the Xerox copying process, ways to use high-pressure water jets to improve efficiency and reduce waste when peeling potatoes -- and all things super-duper secret when it comes to deep, dark government projects -- doesn't like the fact that a very nice, high-end gun club has opened up down the road. In rural West Jefferson, west of Columbus, the Big Darby Creek Shooting Range is now open for business and is growing in popularity. A multi-million dollar facility, Big Darby Creek is suddenly being targeted by Battelle, which runs a not-so-top-secret laboratory facility nearby. Seems the company, which manages nuclear research facilities in a handful of U.S. facilities for the Department of Energy, is quietly pressuring township trustees and Madison County officials to rescind the club's zoning status. The reason? Battelle is reportedly unnerved that people with guns are congregating nearby.

This one is going to heat up and could get very ugly, folks. Battelle has a few skeletons in its closet regarding the West Jeff facility. Stay tuned!

Jeff Soyer Responds to Illinois Lawmaker's Wish To Take On 'People Of The Gun'

Gotta love this one. Jeff Soyer, in his blog "Alphecca," comments on an Illinois state representative candidate, who refers to firearms advocates and owners as "People of the Gun" that someone needs to "take on." Soyer's take? "OF COURSE, it isn’t the 90 million law abiding gun owners in this country that are murdering urban children in our nation’s cities. It’s the out-of-control street gangs, drug gangs, and other kids left unattended and unsupervised by their parents." Hear that Ohio big-city mayors? Click on the post headline for the full story in Illinois.

As Rome Burns . . er, uh . . As Columbus' Crime Rate Jumps

Rome or Columbus . . . the result is about the same. Anti-gun Mayor Michael Coleman (who keeps telling everyone he LOVES his job) keeps fiddling on and on about too many guns, but the crime rate is jumping. Murders are down slightly, but violent crime has spiked significantly, according to federal crime stats. Coleman touts his police "strike forces" on the ground, but only instituted the practice after being embarrassed into doing so by pro-gun groups like Peoples Rights Organization and neighborhood associations. PRO testified more than two years ago in hearings prior to the city re-instituting its disastrous ban on competition rifles (so-called "assault weapons") that the answer was more cops on the street, and far less plea-bargaining away of gun charges. He did not bother to attend any hearings, and only after he had abandoned his quest for the governorship of Ohio did he bother to comment on the issue. He knew that far too many democrat voters outside the big cities disagree completely with his stand on lawfully owned guns.

Anyway, as Rome . . er, uh, Columbus burns, the editorial board at the Columbus Dispatch -- still holed up in their ivory tower -- continue to pontificate about the need for Ohio courts to dump the general law passed overwhelmingly by the Ohio General Assembly (and supported by then gubernatorial candidate and now Gov. Ted Strickland). Ohio Attorney General Mark Dann, who was in the legislature at the time, also voted FOR the general law, which puts responsibility for all firearms related lawmaking in the hands of state legislators. As it has on numerous occasions, the state pierced Ohio's home rule provision, just like it did when it standardized all local building codes to one state code.

Law enforcement is in favor of this general law on firearms, because it will eliminate the patchwork quilt of confusion over what is or is not legal on either side of a municipal or township line. Ohio residents are safer because they no longer need fear what jurisdiction they are in and what the law on firearms is here or there.

The Dispatch and Ohio's other major newspapers need to climb down from the ivory towers. They are out of the mainstream. They are crying out for relevance in a media world that is passing them by. Other cities and states that have seen pre-emption-type laws, have also seen there crime rates lessen. But it wasn't because criminals suddenly decided to obey the laws . . . it was because ordinary citizens now have the means to protect themselves that might have been denied before. And the criminals know it, and are more wary.

To the mayors of Columbus, Dayton, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Clyde and others, as well as the editorial boards at the Columbus Dispatch, Plain Dealer (Cleveland), Dayton Daily News, Cincinnati Post and Cincinnati Enquirer, you need to quit playing games with an important issue. Its not about the guns -- its about criminality.

The Dispatch editorial earlier this week was just what most Central Ohioans have come to expect. But I wonder how many Dispatch staffers, or even Columbus residents, would be shocked to know that members of the dynasty that publishes this paper often carried when it was illegal to do so. This same paper editorialized for years that CCW was a horrible idea, and should not be allowed to become law.

Seems more than just hypocritical, doesn't it?

BTW, the Dispatch says cities need to be able to make their own laws more stringent than that of the state. Well then, let's go back to hundreds of different building codes that confuse consumers and builders, and drive up the cost of construction. Let's go back to every little 'burg being able to set its own speed limits. Speed traps are mostly a thing of the past in the Buckeye State, but the Dispatch's approach would bring 'em back! Read the editorial that really ticked me off, beyond what Mayor Mike has been saying, by going to: http://dispatch.com/live/content/editorials/stories/2007/10/07/CLYDE.ART_ART_10-07-07_G4_2O83NH2.html?sid=101

3 'Children's' Groups Weigh in on Parker v. District of Columbia

Well and so the circus begins . . .

Three so-called "children's organizations" have filed "friends of the court" briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court, weighing in on the high court's expected review of the landmark Parker v. District of Columbia decisions. As expected, they are fighting to save the D.C. gun ban. The groups are: The Children's Defense Fund, the Society for Adolescent Medicine and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Of course, the bureaucrats who run these special-interest groups aren't considering the lives that will be saved -- perhaps the lives of children -- if parents are finally allowed the means to defend their families in this area that doubles both as capitol of the United States, and all too frequently the murder capitol of the nation.

For the full story, click on the headline of this post.

Dave Hardy's New Documentary, "In Search Of The Second Amendment," Premiere and Trailer

I had the opportunity to meet scholar and documentarian Dave Hardy on Saturday at the 2007 Gun Rights Policy Conference. That night, he premiered his just completed documentary, "In Search of the Second Amendment," to the nearly 1,000 scholars and activists who had gathered from around the nation. I only got to see the first 10 minutes of this film because Dave Buda and I were heading back to Columbus, but this piece is going to have people on the right and left talking. Earlier in the day, Dave talked about what it took to get his film completed.

View the film preview trailer and hear what nationally syndicated columnist Michelle Malkin has to say about this thought-provoking new documentary by clicking on the link below.


JPFO 'Goody Gun" Program Draws Fire

Not unexpectedly, a new kids program from Jews For the Preservation of Firearms Ownership (www.jpfo.org) is taking fire. See what the argument is about by clicking on the headline of this post. This debate is "sweet."

Liberal's Lament: Professor Acknowledges That The Framers Meant What They Meant Regarding Guns

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University and a member of USA TODAY's board of contributors. As an academic, he acknowledges that he was "blissfully happy to ignore" the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. He writes this week in USA Today, however, that in light of the looming Parker v. District of Columbia case that the Supreme Court may accept for consideration, the framers got it right and it is time to admit it.

Click on the headline of this post to go to the full article.

08 October 2007

Parker Counsel Asks Where New AG Nominee Stands on 2A

David Levy, a fellow at the Cato Institute and co-counsel to the plaintiffs in the Parker v. District of Columbia case, has written an interesting op-ed for The Hill, a hard hitting publication covering D.C. politics. Click on the headline of this post to go directly to his very compelling piece.

Dave Hardy Raves About GRPC

Dave Hardy, who writes a blog called "Of Arms and the Law," noted in a post today that he read one of John Lott's books on the plane on his return from GRPC 2007 in Cincinnati. I have skimmed the book, but have not had the chance to read it from cover to cover.

Hardy notes the following: In one chapter Lott writes of "how the homicide rate in Baghdad, where we let everyone except insurgents have a full auto AK-47 in their home or business, is lower than that of DC, where guns are tightly controlled. (And he has a followup article rebutting claims that Baghdad has more homicides, pointing out that the MSM who carried that story used stats that included in the Iragi homicides insurgents killed by the US, people killed in car crashes, etc., basically all deaths other than disease). I know I probably got the city's spelling wrong, no time now to correct it."

Nicely written Dave! Lott's presentation during the Saturday noon luncheon (pinch-hitting for the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, who was ill and could not make it), was a home run. He has many things to say. The man is not a politician . . . he is a statistician. As one pundit put it a long time ago, "facts are a funny thing." And Lott drives the antis nuts because he doesn't look at crime and guns through a political lens. He lets pure data drive the engine of a study.

Anyway, check out Dave Hardy's blog if you get time. I have it linked to the headline of this post.

Columbus Mayor Mike Coleman is a Broken Record

How do I say this . . . ? Mike Coleman is a one-trick pony when it comes to firearms issues. But then, so are most liberal democrat mayors from large cities.

In a debate last week with his first challenger in years, attorney Bill Todd, Columbus Mayor Coleman got his behind whipped. Our daily newspaper, the Columbus Dispatch, called it a draw. But people who listened to the debate on the radio noticed the Coleman was a weak performer and frequently repeated himself, armed only with sound bytes. He has been known to be rough around the edges when it came to spontaneous Q&A, and is far more polished with memorized sound bytes. Todd, on the other hand, was offering new ideas and challenging Coleman at every turn.

Now, Todd's "I'll be the 'education mayor'" schtick is not going to carry the day. Specifically, most republicans want over-reaching government out of their lives. Todd's proposal for the mayor's office to take over Columbus' beleagured public school system is a great PR attention-getter, but not necessarily the best approach. And the jury is out on whether it has worked in other big cities across the U.S.

But on the gun issue, Todd was the winner. He talked about crime. Getting tough on criminals. Better equipping police to do their job. When he wasn't repeating how much he enjoys being mayor, all Coleman could do was recite tired sound bytes, along the lines of "we have too many guns on our streets, we have too many guns in our city, we have too many guns in our state, we have too many guns in our country." That is not his exact quote, but it is a more than fair representation of what he said. I later looked at videotape of him as he recited this mantra -- he was practically in a daze, and his blank stare as he repeated these words was disconcerting I would think to even his supporters.

For the first time in years, Coleman is being seriously challenged. He will probably carry Election Day, but it will be costly for him. Right now, he is out cutting ribbons at every event he can talk the local TV station directors into covering on the evening news. He is going to go through a lot of money, make a lot of promises and owe a lot of people. Then we'll see if he goes back to business as usual.

No matter what happens, this campaign is sure to get ugly. The Columbus mayor, who has signed onto NYC Mayor Michael Bloomburg's "let's break some laws so we can try to hurt the gun industry" wagon train, wasn't even challenged the last time he ran for re-election. Todd will have trouble raising money. But Coleman's lame excuses about why there is incredible crime in Ohio's largest city aren't going to fly this time. He cannot continue to be glib and blame firearms and firearms owners any more. Stay tuned!

Thanks to Brother-In-Arms Cuddy

While the inspiration to set up a civil rights-oriented blog came from participation this past weekend in the 2007 Gun Rights Policy Conference, the idea for the name actually came from one of my brothers in arms, Jude Cuddy. Jude is a high-power competitor (long range shooting with open sights) and very insightful individual. He and I have talked a number of times over the years about the emergence of online newsletters. He always thought a great name for some such product would be "The Ready Line," for the reasons I mentioned in the preceding post.

Mr. Cuddy, I couldn't agree more. Thank you for the suggestion. It's not quite a newsletter, but actually something far more dynamic. It is a tool that gets not just information, but knowledge, out where it needs to be FAR more rapidly.

Why Call This Blog "The Ready Line"?

I had the template for this blog, its name, and description, up for a few hours before I published my first post regarding GRPC. In that short time I received no fewer than 5 emails from new readers (who apprently cruise the Net looking at new blogs) asking me, "what the heck does the title mean?" Why call it The Ready Line?

"The Ready Line" is a phrase used in shooting competitions to describe, quite literally, the line behind which you take inventory of, and ready your equipment prior to engaging in the actual contest several yards ahead at "The Firing Line." It is also the line behind which non-shooters must remain.

So why not name this blog "The Firing Line," or something like that? Because while the data this blog will ultimately contain, and the knowledge that will be provided and exchanged, will take aim at those who attempt to take away a woman's right to choose how she wants to defend herself, it is mostly about being ready at all times.

The arms war in the U.S. can really be compared to a giant chess match. It is about thinking about the issue and challenges, and planning your strategy and tactics, some 5 to 10 moves in advance. It is about being able to observe, discuss, relate, think, explain, debate and act. It is about being "ready." And you can't fire -- literally at a target, or figuratively at the anti's and unenlightened politicians -- unless you are prepared.

Unless you are ready.

GRPC a Huge Hit Once More!

I am just returned from the national Gun Rights Policy Conference near Cincinnati. Held in Fort Mitchell, Ky, GRPC 2007 was a huge hit. Unfortunately I could only attend the Saturday session with a Columbus colleague, attorney and brother-in-arms David Buda. But we reunited with many old acquaintances -- and met many new friends -- from across the U.S., all involved in the defense of every American's right to keep and bear arms. I will have more info on GRPC in my next few posts. But sufficed to say, even one day gets you re-energized, even in the face of the threat posed by many anti-self-defense politicians who are running for president. Nearly 1,000 people from the U.S. -- and Canada -- attended. I heard from state representatives or senators from Hawaii, Ohio, and elsewhere. A handful wanted to know why I wasn't speaking. No time, my friends, unfortunately.

Among those attending from Ohio's Peoples Rights Organization (PRO) were Roland Millar, our hunter education chair; Dave Rossman, our grassroots groups liaison; Mike Moran, central Ohio attorney and a speaker on Sunday's program; Roger Antolik, one of the coordinators of Ohio's 4-H shooting sports program; the Williams' of Cincinnati, and many, many others. Our colleagues at Buckeye Firearms Association were also well represented, with BFA Chairman Jim Irvine leading the way. I am also proud to share that BFA was presented the Grassroots Group of the Year Award at the conference. 2007 was a banner year for all firearms owners in Ohio, and all three Ohio statewide organizations (which are now working together far more closely than ever) played a huge role. But BFA scored some big hits, most notably an expose on the financial questions surrounding Ohio anti-gun leader Toby Hoover and how that "organization" is operated. Jim, as I mentioned publicly at the microphone on Saturday, you guys earned that award and I am thrilled for you.

I have been a long-time blogger in my commercial/investment real estate practice. It became apparent that blogging to discuss the Second Amendment could be a powerful educational tool after listening to my good friend Kenn Blanchard (consultant, security expert, podcaster and author of "Black Man With a Gun") and new friend Jeff Knox, operator of The Firearms Coalition (http://www.firearmscoalition.org/). Jeff's dad, Neil Knox, founder of the Firearms Coalition and the first director of the NRA's Institute for Legislative Action, passed away a few years ago. But when Neil and I first met in 2001 at a GRPC, two past newspapermen hit it off and began a regular correspondence on how to exploit new technologies to communicate firearms rights news. I only wish he had lived to see the explosion of blogs to educate. He would have loved it. Jeff and his family have grown the FC since that time and I am delighted to have finally made his acquaintance.

Thanks for visiting Post Number One! More to come . . .