Bearing Arms

Rant of the Week: Why Is It Comedians Think They’re So Intelligent?

I’m not sure which the better example of being delusional is: Ed Asner (aka Lou Grant) and Ed Weinberger (a comedy writer) co-authoring an article about the Second Amendment as if they were scholars or Salon Magazine publishing their article and pretending they are scholars. What’s going on, an LSD renaissance?

In their Salon article “Sorry, NRA: The U.S. was actually founded on gun control,” Asner and Weinberger follow the talking points that reflect their comedy careers – they’re written by someone else. For instance:

…Let’s consider the case made by the NRA, its Congressional hired hands, the majority of the Supreme Court, and various right wing pundits who claim the Second Amendment is not simply about state militias but guarantees the unfettered right of everyone to own, carry, trade and eventually shoot someone with a gun.

That’s about as funny as a Joyce Behar stand-up routine. What these has-been funny men are missing is that it isn’t the NRA that has the clout. It’s the millions of members who make up the NRA that have the clout.

The authors try to make the usual anti-gun case that the Second Amendment is about being in the militia and citizens don’t really have a right to personal gun ownership. One of the stupidest things I have ever read was the author’s claim that “…the Constitution was written, a new nation conceived and a more perfect union formed because the Founders were afraid of guns — and the wrong hands they might fall into. Not just slaves. Not just Native Americans. But poor white men. Hell, the Framers didn’t want everyone to have a vote, let alone a gun.”

Clearly, neither of these two clowns made it to fourth grade American History class or, for that matter, watched Davy Crockett on television. Everybody owned guns in the 18th century. It would be difficult to imagine even being able to survive without a firearm. Guns put food on the table, protected your family from all manner of threats man-and-beast, and provided a collective defense – the so-called militia.

Let’s take a look at what some very famous 18th-century men did say about firearm ownership.

Recognizing freedom backed by an armed populous can have its concerns, Thomas Jefferson wrote in a letter to James Madison dated January 30th, 1787: “I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.”

Later that same year, on December 20th, he also wrote to Madison saying, “What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms.”

Regarding the issue of the militia, On June 4th, 1788, George Mason, in a speech before the Virginia Ratifying Convention said, “I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people…” In point of fact, John Q. Citizen was, and remains, the militia.

On January 8th, 1790, addressing both Houses of Congress for the first time, George Washington said, “… the Constitution should never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press, or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms…”

History books are full of citations from the Founding Fathers and other influential men of the time, all making it very clear that firearms were an integral part of their lives. Equally important, their firearms were similar to what the military had, because they served as a constant reminder of the harsh reality of the consequences of tyrannical rule.

The founding of this nation has its roots deep into gun control.

There is one point where the class clowns get it right. The founding of this nation has its roots deep into gun control. By 1775, tension had grown substantially to the point where the British government began to fear an armed colonial population. British General Gage had heard that John Hancock and Samuel Adams, two leaders of the patriot group the Sons of Liberty, were in Lexington. So, on April 19th, Gage sent 700 British soldiers to arrest Hancock and Adams. They were also tasked with continuing on to Concord where Gage believed the colonists stored ammunition for the common defense. The plan was to confiscate the powder, thereby, implementing the first gun control scheme aimed at disarming John Q. Public.

Boston patriots Paul Revere and William Dawes got wind of the plot and warned Hancock and Adams, as well as the local minutemen who surprised British troops as they arrived at the North Bridge in Concord. Whatever thoughts the British had about the efficacy of the ragtag American colonists were dispelled with the “shot heard ‘round the world.” The Battle of Concord was on, several British soldiers fell, and the Revolutionary War had begun.

So Asner and Weinberger at least got one thing right. In a manner of speaking, the United States was founded on gun control – patriots taking up arms to prevent the government from implementing it. It is a lesson that the comedians – both in and out of government service – might do well to remember.

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Arizona Brings Back Big Game Super Raffle

The state of Arizona is about to make a handful of folks very happy. It seems the state has decided to bring back their Big Game Super Raffle. From Ammoland:

Still searching for the perfect gift for all the hunters on your list? Tickets for the 2018 Arizona Big Game Super Raffle are on sale and by buying tickets now you’ll be entered to win an early bird prize.

While 10 lucky individuals will win one of 10 special big-game tags (bighorn sheep, elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, pronghorn antelope, bison, turkey, black bear, javelina and mountain lion) for the 2018-2019 hunting season, the real winner is Arizona’s wildlife.

The 2017 Big Game Super Raffle netted a record-setting $673,600, and every dollar raised for each species through the raffle is returned to the Arizona Game and Fish Department and managed by the Arizona Habitat Partnership Committee for that particular species.

Those who buy tickets online in December will be entered to win one of 10 Canyon Coolers as part of the “Buy Early, Buy Often, Win Big” incentive drawing program.

Additional incentive drawings take place for all tickets purchased online through May. Buyers will receive one incentive drawing entry per order regardless of the number of raffle tickets purchased in that order.

Raffle tickets can be ordered online, or a ticket order form that can be printed out and mailed in is available on the website. Tickets range from $5 to $25 depending on the species.

Winners will be able to hunt these species for a full 365 days, meaning there’s no season for those lucky few. In other words, they’ll be able to hunt when there’s absolutely no hunting pressure on these species, making they far less skittish.

As a hunter, this is a wonderful thing, a virtual gift from God. Or the state of Arizona and whoever buys the ticket, at least.

It’s also a hell of a way to raise money. The handful of these winners won’t be enough to really hurt the herds as they grow throughout the year, but people buying tickets will make a nice contribution to the budget from people who are voluntarily forking out their hard earned cash.

This will allow any number of projects to be funded without having to worry about the politics that might otherwise infest such programs. After all, legislators aren’t nearly as likely to get ticky about things if they’re not expected to fund it.

In fact, I can’t help but think about how something like this could benefit a lot of states. My own home state of Georgia is probably not a good candidate because we have great whitetail deer hunting, but not a whole lot of other favorite large game animals. At least, not that actually have a season (I’m looking at you, wild hogs).

However, there are still plenty of other states that could really take advantage of this one as a revenue generator. I sincerely hope they’ll follow Arizona’s lead and not just raise some money, but give hunters a golden opportunity to do some hunting when it’s just them.

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Honor Defense Opens Up On Drop Controversy

While the Honor Guard’s issue with drops isn’t nearly as widespread a controversy as it was when Sig had a similar issue with the P320, it’s still a thing. How big of a deal it is remains to be seen.

However, when a popular blog that allegedly failed to act on a story regarding the failure has two editors “retire” just hours apart, one can’t help but wonder just how significant that part of the issue is.

Honor Defense, who makes the pistols, however, remained silent. Now, they’re not.

Georgia-based firearm maker Honor Defense is standing behind their flagship offering, the single stack Honor Guard 9mm pistol, amid calls that it is unsafe.

In response to a round of YouTube videos circulating this week which show Honor Guard pistols discharging after being dropped or hit with a hammer at certain angles, the company says they have always complied with industry testing standards to include drop and jar tests performed internally and by an outside lab.

“Any firearm can discharge when dropped. Like any user of a firearm, users of Honor Defense’s products must handle firearms in a safe manner,” says the company, going on to warn that, “No one should attempt to perform a drop test outside of a professionally-controlled environment.”

The company has also distributed a video showing their own testing of an Honor Defense pistol while mounted on a table rest, hitting it with a steel hammer until the frame broke without the pistol firing.

Here’s the problem, however. Their testing says it doesn’t happen. However, we’ve also seen the video showing the contrary. Further, The Truth About Guns ran a similar test, videoed the results, and the outcome was the same.

Now, I get Honor Defense being…well, defensive about this. No one wants a recall, especially for a small gun manufacturer.

Unfortunately, what we see is that there is an issue with the gun. Two different people replicated the results, and I’m sure if the Honor Guard were as common as the P320 was, we’d be seeing a lot more videos on the topic.

It’s a thing. I’m sorry, but it is.

That’s not to say that Honor Defense didn’t test the weapon properly or anything. There’s no evidence of any wrongdoing on the part of the company, and I’m not going to imply that there was any such thing taking place. None. Sig did all the same testing on the P320 and still had an issue.

But the problem is that not only do we see this issue happening, we’re now seeing Honor Defense outright denying there’s any kind of a problem. Well, guess who the average consumer is more likely to believe in this scenario, the company or the guys who get no monetary gain from saying the guns aren’t drop safe?

Here’s a hint: It won’t be the guys who stand to lose money over this.

This is especially true when both videos showing the problem also show that the weapon was loaded, but the video that is supposedly Honor Defense’s evidence to the contrary shows no such thing. While I am personally sure it was loaded in a similar manner, the fact that it’s not shown to have been loaded will likely be used to discredit the video.

Frankly, I do think there’s a problem. It certainly looks like it’s something that wouldn’t be noticed during normal testing, but probably should be, and that means there’s an issue with the testing protocols.

However, Honor Defense isn’t helping their case here. Take a page from Sig, own the problem, and make it right. Period.

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Woman Pleads Guilty For Shooting Encyclopedia-Wearing Boyfriend

People will do anything for fame. It’s especially true if wealth can be had as well. They’ll try almost anything to be adored by crowds, and they don’t always think things through.

Take the example of a woman who shot her boyfriend while he held an encyclopedia in front of him.

A Minnesota woman has pleaded guilty to fatally shooting her boyfriend in a videotaped stunt they planned to post on YouTube.

Monalisa Perez, 20, pleaded guilty last week to second-degree manslaughter in the June death of 22-year-old Pedro Ruiz III, The Star Tribune reported . Perez has two young children with Ruiz.

Perez told investigators that Ruiz wanted to make a video of her shooting a bullet into a hardcover encyclopedia he was holding against his chest, according to court records. Perez said she fired a .50-caliber Desert Eagle pistol from about a foot away. Two cameras recorded the incident, though investigators have withheld the footage. Ruiz died from a gunshot wound to the chest.

The couple had a YouTube channel where they posted videos of pranks and stunts. Hours before the shooting, Perez tweeted: “Me and Pedro are probably going to shoot one of the most dangerous videos ever. HIS idea not MINE.”

Perez deserves to be charged, of course, but she’s not the only one who bears some responsibility. Obviously, Ruiz does as well, but dead people can’t be charged. In this case, that’s a true pity, because the level of stupid it takes to think something like this is a good idea is downright criminal.

Both of these were fairly young people who were old enough to know better but didn’t.

Why didn’t they?

For one thing, I can’t help but believe that a lack of firearm education in schools may have been a contributing factor in this. While schools feel it’s their place to teach anything and everything else, there’s a lack of education on guns in schools that should also be considered criminal. Kids, particularly kids raised in urban environments, grow up without an understanding of firearms except in the movies.

There, guns are at once cannons that can literally blow someone’s head off yet offer so little penetration that a thin piece of wood offers total cover. Is it any wonder that Ruiz thought he’d survive his encounter?

But because gun education is unwelcome on school campuses, Ruiz is dead and Perez’s life is completely ruined.

Undoubtedly, there are those who will blame the gun and gun owners for this, but that’s just a case of reaching to try and prove a point. Literally no responsible gun owner thinks stuff like this is a good idea. Sure, it might be interesting to test, but none of us would risk this by doing it with a human holding the book. We’d do it in front of some ballistic gelatin or something.

No, this is on the people who prefer to keep people in the dark on guns. Keeping people stupid on a subject doesn’t keep them safe. It makes them dumb enough to think stuff like this is a good idea.

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Want To Know Why Gun Registration Doesn’t Impact Criminals?

One of the recurring themes here at Bearing Arms is that gun laws don’t work. It’s a recurring theme because, well…they don’t. Time and time again, we see that they fail to stop criminals from hurting the innocent.

The worst of the bunch is gun registration, which we’ve seen lead to confiscation far too easily. The thing is, however, they never confiscate the guns from the criminals. They can’t because criminals don’t register their guns.

The kicker is that criminals also don’t have to register their guns.

Not following?

Well, the laws on gun registration may not explicitly say it, but convicted felons are actually exempt from legally having to register their firearms. After a fashion, at least.

Here are the guys at The Loadout Room to explain it:

There are many U.S. cities and states which require registration of firearms and elaborate licensing schemes. You might think that this is the sort of infringement which is prohibited by the Second Amendment of the Constitution.  While the U.S. Supreme Court has affirmed the Second Amendment as an individual right, it will be years before unconstitutional city and state laws are challenged and struck down.

The application of the Fifth Amendment is more defined. In the case of Haynes v. United States, (1968) the requirement to register guns has been ruled an unconstitutional infringement for a certain protected class. The good news is that you can readily join this class. The bad news is, you have to become a felon or prohibited person to enjoy freedom from registration.

Haynes v. United States390 U.S. 85 (1968),  interpreted the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution‘s self-incrimination clause. Miles Edward Haynes was a convicted felon who was charged with failing to register a firearm under the National Firearms Act of 1934. Haynes argued that as convicted felon prohibited from owning a firearm, requiring him to register was essentially requiring him to make an open admission to the government, a violation of his right not to incriminate himself.

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Haynes in a 7-1 decision. This decision blocks state prosecutions of criminals who fail to register guns as required by state law gun registration schemes. Law abiding citizens must comply with the schemes and pay the associated fees.

I hadn’t thought of that until I read this late yesterday, but they’re right. You can’t be required to incriminate yourself, and gun registration schemes would do just that for convicted felons.

Since many of the people who commit crimes in the first place are convicted felons, gun registration doesn’t help nearly as much in solving most crimes as some people may like to think.

But think about how this is a total kick in the rear. A resident of Hawaii or California has to register his or her firearms in order to comply with legal requirements, but the felon across town doesn’t. How is that right?

It’s not. It’s yet another reason why firearm registration schemes need to die in a fire. They don’t keep anyone safe, they just punish the law abiding. What’s worse is that same law is one the convicted felon won’t be charged with breaking if caught with a firearm, and yet anti-gun zealots will keep peddling registration schemes like they’re something good.

Next time, ask them just how they think a law that basically only applies to the law-abiding, not just in practice but on every level, will keep anyone safe and see what they say.

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Class Action Lawsuit For Wrongful NICS Denial Gaining Steam

I’ve personally never run into a problem with the NICS system when purchasing a firearm, but some people clearly do. I’ve heard of plenty who have had delays on their firearms for no good reason, and it’s aggravating for those poor souls.

However, what about the guys who fail the NICS check but aren’t prohibited individuals?

Well, it seems they’re bent out of shape over the situation, which I don’t blame them for, and they may now looking to take action. Class action, that is.

From Ammoland:

Rumors have begun that a class-action suit against the FBI, BATFE, NICS-system operators and DOJ itself may be in the works, from people whose civil rights were wrongfully denied by bad firearms background checks.

Multiple reports have surfaced that at least 25% of retail-sales denials are completely erroneous.

Professor John Lott has estimated that up to 99% of NICS denials are false positives, and based on the number of actual criminals apprehended or convictions obtained, NICS basically just denies rights without much crime-fighting component evidenced, at enormous cost and delay.

The class of people whose fundamental constitutional civil rights have been withheld or outright denied by NICS is likely in the millions.

This may just be rumor at the moment, but it doesn’t need to be. This needs to be a thing.

After all, if the Sutherland Springs killer can buy guns through law-abiding dealers, non-prohibited people should be able to do so as well, and if they can’t…well, a right delayed is a right denied.

The NICS is broken. That’s really the only way to describe it, and that’s why so many of us oppose the whole No Fly, No Buy idea. It’s not that we want to arm terrorists, but that a system that already denies law-abiding people their constitutional right to keep and bear arms shouldn’t be empowered to do the same to even more Americans who have done nothing wrong.

Remember that Sen. Ted Kennedy was on the No-Fly list, and we all know he was much more of a danger while driving.

To think of the millions of people who are denied their constitutional right…

There’s no way this nation would allow this to be the case if we were talking about voting rights or right to free speech. There’s no way at all it would be tolerated. There would be congressional hearings on the matter and the talking heads on both sides would be blaming someone for the problem while saying something needs to be done about it.

But since we’re talking about gun rights, most like to pretend the problem doesn’t exist.

Well, it does. Unfortunately, the Fix NICS bill is unlikely to do anything to fix this, so something has to be done. A class action lawsuit just might, unless Congress steps in and acts, which they should.

Adding the names of bad people is a good thing, but taking out the names of people who shouldn’t be in there should be a good thing too. This shouldn’t be a partisan issue either.

Of course, that just means it will be.

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BATFE Considering Changing Position On Bump Stocks

Following the horrific events of October 1 in Las Vegas, the subject of bump stocks flared into a firestorm of controversy. The legal devices were sold over the internet after the BATFE had given their approval on the things several years earlier. They were a novelty device up until a maniac opened fire on a concert, killing 58 people and injuring hundreds more.

In the aftermath, everyone wanted to target bump stocks, it seemed. Even our own pro-Second Amendment commenters were somewhat divided on the subject.

The National Rifle Association felt the call on regulating bump stocks belonged to the BATFE, while BATFE argued their ruling was in complete accordance with federal law and that Congress needed to act if that needed to change.

Now it seems that BATFE has decided to go along with the NRA’s proposal instead.

From The Truth About Guns:

By law, in order to do that they have to issue a Notice of Proposed Rule Making, inviting public comments on their potential new inanity stance. And to get that process started they have to publish the NPRM in the federal register, something they anticipate doing tomorrow.

Thanks to our friends at the Military Arms Channel, we got our grubby little hands on their filing.

SUMMARY: The Department of Justice anticipates issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that would interpret the statutory definition of “machinegun” in the National Firearms Act of 1934 and Gun Control Act of 1968 to clarify whether certain devices, commonly known as “bump fire” stocks, fall within that definition. Before doing so, the Department and ATF need to gather information and comments from the public and industry regarding the nature and scope of the market for these devices.

DATES: Written comments must be postmarked and electronic comments must be submitted on or before [INSERT DATE 30 DAYS AFTER PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER]. Commenters should be aware that the electronic Federal Docket Management System will not accept comments after Midnight Eastern Standard Time on the last day of the comment period.

You can read the entire document here. Have at it.

There you have it.

Let’s bear in mind that bump stocks are only one way to facilitate bump-fire. Other items used to create bump-fire include rubber bands and belt loops, so regulating bump stocks won’t actually accomplish a blasted thing.

At best, this would be a trophy to allow groups like Giffords to point to a scalp on their wall as if they’d actually accomplished anything, anything at all.

It won’t make anyone safer. It won’t prevent another Las Vegas. It won’t change much of anything except to maybe turn thousands of ordinary Americans into criminals because they already own bump stocks but don’t really follow gun news that much.

That’s about the only things that new regulations might do. Nice job.

I guess it may make some people feel warm and tingly in their bed at night, content that they’ve helped get a big win for their side…until someone else uses bump-fire for some nefarious purpose.

Then, rather than take a step back and realize that maybe they’re beating their heads against the wall, they’ll just look for something else to try and ban.

 

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DOD Nominee Withdraws Himself From Consideration After Anti-Gun Comments

Dr. Dean Winslow might have been a slam dunk for the role he was nominated for at the Department of Defense. As a former Air Force flight surgeon, the role of assistant secretary of defense for health affairs would have been right in his wheelhouse.

Unfortunately, he also said that he thought it was “insane” that regular citizens could buy an AR-15 following the Sutherland Springs tragedy.

While his role at the Department of Defense would have had no impact on the nation’s gun policy, now it won’t matter as Winslow has removed himself from consideration.

A Defense Department nominee whose confirmation was put on hold over comments he made about gun control announced in a op-ed on Wednesday that he has withdrawn from consideration for the post.

Dean Winslow, a retired Air Force colonel and flight surgeon who was being considered as an assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, said in a piece on the Washington Post websitethat the growing political fight over his confirmation remarks have made him too much of a distraction to effectively help the department.

“I have the credentials to help, including 35 years of experience in the Air Force in military and academic medicine …” he wrote. “But unfortunately, I do not possess one credential the committee wanted to see: I do not support the unrestricted ownership of semiautomatic assault weapons by civilians.”

In his op-ed, Winslow (who served four deployments to Iraq and two to Afghanistan) said he has no opposition to civilian-owned firearms but said high-powered assault rifles are unsuitable for untrained civilians.

“As commander of an Air Force hospital in Baghdad during the surge, I have seen what these weapons do to human beings,” he wrote. “The injuries are devastating.”

Winslow has a right to his opinions, and while it’s arguable whether his opinions on a subject that has nothing to do with his role should have sunk his nomination, he still voiced them at a delicate time. He knew the administration’s views on guns, and he knew the majority in the Senate’s view on guns, yet he spouted his thoughts anyway.

The fact is, Winslow’s experience treating gunshot wounds is irrelevant.

What is relevant is that Americans have the right to keep and bear arms. If Winslow wanted a role in the government where he would have to renew his oath to support and defend the Constitution, it would help if he understood that opposition to civilians owning semi-automatic military-style rifles goes against the very core of that Constitution.

While he wouldn’t have had any say in federal firearm policy, it’s on him for bringing it up.

He spouted his anti-gun thinking for the press, which he had to know was going to make headlines. I can’t muster any sympathy for him, and not just because he disagrees with me on such an important topic. No, I can’t muster any sympathy because he was dumb enough to think he could get away with this.

He didn’t, and now he’s out.

Maybe this will be a nice object lesson for others to keep their anti-gun opinions to themselves.

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Boston Police Investigate Shooting That Couldn’t Have Happened

We keep hearing that tough gun laws stop crime. Anti-gun zealots say it all the time. While we keep pointing out that no, it doesn’t work that way, the zealots just roll their eyes and make mutterings over how cute we are with our silly ignorance. Of course gun laws work, they argue. Apparently, criminals are known for following the law in their worlds.

How, then, do they explain a double homicide in Boston, where gun laws tend to be pretty strict?

Police are looking for the gunman in a double shooting in Mission Hill They said they have witnesses and surveillance video and want the public to step up.

Some in the neighborhood said they do and are as frustrated as the police. Residents made their way around the crime scene tape Wednesday night. “We definitely want it to stop,” said Manny Oliva, a concerned resident.

Around 5 p.m., Boston Police say a man walked up to two others sitting in a red car and shot them. They were on Parker Street just one block off Tremont.

“A lot of traffic was in the area, which is always scary, it’s very brazen,” Boston Police Commissioner William Evans said.

The injured men are 19 and 21 years old. One just showed up at the hospital. The other managed to drive a couple blocks away and was then taken by ambulance.

“We had officers in the area, we’ve put a lot of officers in the area since that shooting and they heard the shots and they were here within seconds,” Evans said.

Clearly, both police and residents are mistaken. With Massachusetts’s strict gun laws, there’s absolutely no way this crime could have happened. Just like the gunfight in New York City recently between two groups of men. It’s unpossible!

Of course, there is an alternate theory worth exploring, considering the circumstances. It’s entirely possible that criminals will get their hands on guns no matter what you do, and so penalizing the law-abiding and taking away their right to arm themselves for self-defense is pointless.

Just a thought here.

As I’ve said before, if you want to combat violence, you don’t do it by going after the tools used. The best you can hope for is the violent people to resort to other weapons. That’s hardly an improvement on the situation.

Instead, you need to go after the roots of violence itself. And I’m not talking about drugs or gangs, even. Those are symptoms of a deeper problem. It’s beyond time for people to get down and look at the nitty gritty and address those core problems first and foremost.

After you do that, you’re probably going to find that restrictions on firearms are irrelevant. Violence will drop, over time, because the need to pursue a lifestyle that requires violence has dissipated. Remove the perceived need for violence, remove the violence.

But that takes work and it doesn’t make for great soundbites for liberal politicians. It doesn’t happen overnight, either, which makes addressing it unattractive to liberal politicians. That and the fact that it would involve something more than a government program and bunch of taxpayer money also plays a factor.

Either way, this particular crime? Horrible as it is, couldn’t have happened. That’s what the liberal politicians tell me when they focus on guns and nothing else. With their strict gun laws, this double murder in Boston has to be a figment of our imagination.

 

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FBI Agent In Charge: Report On Las Vegas Shooting Should Be Done By Anniversary

What happened in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017, is horrific. There are no other words to describe what took place. The number of casualties, both killed and wounded, is still staggering.

Yet, we still don’t have an answer to the question of just why this happened.

While the FBI Special Agent in Charge of the Las Vegas office can’t promise an answer on the motive of the killer, he does say that we can expect the report by the anniversary of the terrible attack.

“Now that’s a long time for some people, but speaking for the FBI, that’s light speed, all right?” Special Agent in Charge Aaron Rouse said.

Rouse spoke with the Las Vegas Review-Journal during an extensive interview Wednesday at the FBI’s Las Vegas office.

He said reports from other agencies that responded to the mass shooting are being released at different times.

“Ours is focusing a large part on the why, OK? Which is what everybody wants to know,” Rouse said.

The question of motive has gone unanswered since the shooting nearly three months ago, which left 58 concertgoers dead and more than 500 injured. Just 10 days after the massacre, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo was largely unpromising about whether a motive would ever be determined.

“We may never know,” he told the Review-Journal.

On Wednesday, Rouse said the FBI has interviewed upward of 400 people worldwide, each of whom had some sort of connection — big or small — to gunman [name redacted so as to not add fame to these idiots].

“As I sit here today, I believe that we are learning as much as we possibly can about why the subject did what they did,” Rouse said, adding that investigators, as well as “various psychological and sociological” experts, are working the case.

The idea of never knowing a motive is troubling to me.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t expect the FBI to create miracles, and I definitely don’t want them to just make up a motive, but the idea that someone could create an attack of this magnitude and leave no trace of their motive behind? I’m sorry, but that’s just disturbing.

While it sounds like the FBI is doing what they can to figure out a motive, it’s still worrisome that there wasn’t something very clear, something laid out to explain just why he would kill almost 60 people and injure hundreds more. Why do something like that unless you’re making a statement, even a mentally unbalanced one?

I hope they can give us some definitive answer on why. It’s not because it’ll change anything, or because it’ll somehow make it easier to stop other attacks necessarily, but because it’s just too difficult to wrap my head around someone doing something like this for no reason. Even finding out the killer believed the concert-goers were all pod people would provide a level of comfort. I can understand crazy as hell.

That’s probably why most people want to know the motive. It’s not for any other reason than to understand that there was some reason, that the killer didn’t just pull this just because.

Here’s hoping the report comes out earlier than expected, just to settle our minds.

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San Fran Buyback Offers THIS For Your Guns

A buyback program in San Francisco is going a little off the beaten path.

You see, most buyback programs want to make sure you can’t use what they’re giving you to buy more guns, so they tend to give you gift cards. The wisdom of this is debatable, but I see where their thinking is. They usually use gift cards from places within the community and are often for places like grocery stores or big box retailers. Apparently, they think everyone who attends a buyback needs the money to eat or something.

The San Francisco program goes in a very different direction. They’re offering cold, hard cash.

Many tragic stories we hear today involve guns — the UPS shooting in Junemultiple domestic violence cases, and the death of Kathryn Steinle, to name a few.

To reduce the chance of more horrors, United Playaz — in partnership with the city and San Francisco Police Department — is hosting a gun buyback on Saturday. Past United Playaz events have taken hundreds of guns, rifles, and assault weapons of the streets, says United Playaz founder Rudy Corpuz.

Guns with serial numbers registered as missing or tied to crimes are set aside by police while metal from the remaining guns is melted down. The wooden parts are remade into jewelry by people currently incarcerated, Corpuz says.

United Playaz is holding the gun buyback on Saturday, Dec. 16 from 8 a.m. to noon at 1038 Howard St. Handguns will go for $100 and assault weapons for $200 — all cash and no questions asked.

The cash is an interesting touch. While it’s still just a fraction of the worth of most of the firearms they’re talking about–particularly for the so-called “assault weapons”–, it’s also cash. That may well pull in more people than a gift card to the local grocery store.

However, there’s often some legitimate criticism of all gun buyback programs that needs to be restated.

For one, this seems like a hell of a way to pawn stolen firearms. You steal some guns, take them to this buyback, get some cash, then walk away. Even if the gun is returned to the owner, they don’t care. They’ve cashed in already, why would they mind. In fact, now they know where they can steal the same gun again, maybe for the next buyback.

I get the sentiment, but criminals who are likely to actually use a firearm isn’t going to take advantage of a buyback. That would be like a carpenter selling his hammer for a few dollars. For a criminal, the gun is the tool of his trade, so to speak. They’re not likely to unload it for some short-term gain when they know they can top that long term. Frankly, it’s not even that long of a term. A couple of robberies could probably net them the $100 they’d get for their handgun, after all.

It’s funny, though. They pay more for assault weapons, but according to the Department of Justice, most gun crime is committed with handguns.

Why, it’s almost like this is more of a dog and pony show than a real effort to reduce violence.

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Sheryl Crow’s Latest Single To Fund Her Anti-Gun Ideology

It’s hard to find a way to enjoy entertainment without supporting someone who is probably anti-gun. However, most don’t make it clear that enjoying their work will fund anti-gun causes.

Sheryl Crow, however, crossed that line.

Sheryl Crow thought something was going to change after 26 children and staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School lost their lives nearly five years ago in Newtown, Connecticut.

Two months ago, on Oct. 1, Crow watched the news along with the rest of the country as the details surrounding the deaths of 58 people at the Route 91 Harvest Music festival in Las Vegas began to unfold.

“I have the same experience everyone does — complete and total devastation and disillusionment,” Crow tells PEOPLE in an exclusive interview about the release of her new song, “The Dreaming Kind.”

Crow, a nine-time Grammy winner, is working in conjunction with Sandy Hook Promise — a nonprofit group co-founded by Mark Barden, whose son Daniel was killed in the Sandy Hook Tragedy. “The work of Sandy Hook Promise focuses on preventing gun violence before it starts,” he said in a statement.

The singer says her new track came together when she decided to work with Sandy Hook Promise to raise awareness and push forward gun regulation in regard to mental stability. “It seemed to give purpose to my writing,” Crow reveals.

“When Sandy Hook happened, we knew it was a life-changing moment where we were going to address the idea that not everyone should be approved to own a gun, especially military-style weaponry and yet, nothing happened,” she says. “At some point, the alarm clock has to go off and we have to wake up.”

Sheryl, Sheryl, Sheryl. Seriously?

An AR-15 is “military-style” only in so far as it happens to look like something the military uses. After all, here’s a gun that would have made it through almost every so-called “Assault weapon ban” that’s been proposed unscathed:

A mini-14 (photo courtesy of Jim Legans, Jr, via Flickr)

That mini-14 isn’t what most consider a military-style rifle…yet it fires the same round as an AR-15, uses detachable magazines, and otherwise functions in a very similar manner.

In other words, this could have just as easily been the weapon used for these mass shootings…but it wasn’t.

When celebrities open their mouths to do something other than regurgitating line or sing a song, they often betray their lack of understanding of the topic at hand. In this case, by worrying about “military-style” weapons when “style” is irrelevant.

While Crow is certainly entitled to her opinion, she forgets that she produces a product for consumption by a public that has repeatedly responded poorly to gun control efforts. In other words, by making it clear of her ties to gun control efforts, she’s telling every pro-gun American to not bother with her music anymore.

Now, she hasn’t put out anything in a long time I actually cared about, but she’s made it absolutely clear that she doesn’t have any desire for my money. After all, if she did, she’d at least do me the courtesy of at least pretending my gun rights mattered, even if by not expressly admitting that she doesn’t care one bit for them.

But then again, Crow seems to believe that her feelings are universal. As she told The Guardian:

“You would think after Vegas we would see some leadership from our country community,” Crow told the Guardian. “But all I can say about that is if there’s money involved, and fear, these conversations come to a screeching halt.

“There’s no one that I know of in the popular country world that is willing to step out and really to take a stand on this, and that’s really unfortunate.

“I hope there will be people who find a way out of their fear, who stick up for humanity as opposed to sticking with their fanbase or the money that can come along with having those large crowds.”

Sheryl, let me make this simple for you. You’re a performer. Your job is to sing and entertain people.

If you don’t “stick with your fanbase,” as you put it, guess what’s going to happen? People simply aren’t going to spend their hard-earned money with you. Instead, they’ll spend it on entertainers who don’t take a dump on the things that matter to them.

Again, it’s not that Sheryl Crow isn’t entitled to her opinions. However, the rest of us are entitled to ours, and since most of the country music fans tend to be pretty conservative and, by extension of that, pro-gun, spouting off about your anti-gun rage is probably not going to encourage me to maintain a favorable opinion.

I’m just saying.

 

 

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Majority Of Iowans Understand New Laws Won’t Stop Mass Shootings

Everyone wants mass shootings to stop. Everyone sane, at least. They’re terrible events that probably should unite all Americans, if only they weren’t politicized quite so quickly, often before we even know anything. Invariably, someone wants to pass some new law that really won’t solve anything but will make life that much more difficult for we ordinary gun owners.

However, in Iowa, a recent poll suggests that folks in that state understand just how useless those laws are.

A majority of Iowans believe increased controls on gun purchases won’t reduce mass shootings, according to a new Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa Poll.

Fifty-six percent of Iowa adults say additional controls won’t lead to fewer mass shootings. Forty percent believe stricter controls would reduce them. Four percent aren’t sure.

Poll respondent Joi Schwery, 43, a clinical nurse and paramedic from Panama in western Iowa’s Shelby County, said she believes violent people would still find a way to illegally obtain deadly weapons.

“Obviously, the majority of gun owners who obtain them legally are not going around and shooting a lot of people,” said Schwery, a political independent and a gun owner who said she has a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

The Iowa Poll comes amid a national debate over gun control that comes on the heels of two high-profile mass shootings: 26 killed at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, on Nov. 5 and 59 dead and more than 500 injured at a Las Vegas concert on Oct. 1. Earlier mass shootings included 49 killed and 53 injured at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Fla., on June 12, 2016.

The poll found that a large majority of men (63 percent) believe that stricter laws on gun purchases won’t reduce mass shootings. But women are almost evenly divided, with 49 percent saying stricter controls wouldn’t reduce them, while 47 percent say they would.

What those who support these laws fail to realize is that, even in the best of circumstances, the genie is already out of the bottle. Assuming that new laws would somehow stop a maniac forget that there are already so many of these firearms in circulation that new regulations are unlikely to do much of anything.

For example, the Las Vegas killer had accumulated guns for years, passing every background check thrown at him. There’s absolutely nothing that’s been proposed that would have stopped him from killing scores of people from that hotel window. Even the bump stock ban that’s been proposed would have done nothing, mostly because a bump stock isn’t the only way to bump fire.

It sounds like the good people of Iowa–or at least most of the 802 people surveyed–get it. They understand that our sacred rights being trampled doesn’t make us any safer. At best it simply lets politicians pat themselves on the back for doing good work without actually having to solve any real problems.

The roots of mass shootings stem from something far more than firearms. It comes from a failing in our mental health system to identify and treat these seriously unbalanced individuals. It’s not the weapons and it never has been.

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Why Combating Terrorism In Large Cities Requires Gun Rights Reform

Yesterday, New York City dodged a bullet. An attempted suicide bombing failed, where the bomber was the only one with any serious injuries. During the morning rush, New Yorkers were lucky. Such an attack had the potential to kill or injure dozens.

This follows Halloween’s deadly truck attack where eight people were killed when a terrorist ran over a number of people, killing eight just a smidge over a month earlier.

London’s mayor stirred up a lot of anger when he said that terrorism was “part and parcel of living in a big city.”

Right now, politicians are scrambling to figure out just what to do. How can they combat terrorism like this?

The subway attack, like the Halloween attack, are both what are referred to as “lone-wolf” attacks, meaning there’s little chatter for intelligence agencies to pick up, there’s no orders from ISIS or Al Queda, nothing. It’s a guy planning this in his living room after he gets off work for the day. Unless he slips up somewhere along the way, it’s virtually impossible for anyone to prevent an attack like this using typical law enforcement or intelligence techniques.

During a press conference yesterday, officials were reminding people to notify the police if they find anything suspicious. That’s easy to say, but if you find something suspicious involving someone of Middle Eastern descent, you can just as easily be labeled a racist in this day and age. Further, a lot of people find something suspicious without understanding why. They pick it up subconsciously and can’t actually tell a police officer just why they find that guy over there suspicious.

Without a reason, we all know that the police officer is likely to say a thank you and then go about their day. In a city like New York, if a police officer investigated everyone someone found suspicious they’d never get anything else done.

So what can be done?

Politicians are stymied. This wave of attacks is almost impossible for police and the intelligence community to do anything about. That means politicians need to think outside the box.

The thing is, they’re almost there. They’ve almost figured it out.

You see, they want the public’s help, but they’re not ready to ask the public for the help they really and truly need.

They need armed civilians in every city, on every subway platform, walking in every park. They need them everywhere, and for at least one political party, that’s an anathema.

Let’s be realistic. The police simply can’t be everywhere. Anywhere law enforcement is, then becomes a place that a would-be terrorist will simply not be because they know there aren’t enough officers for everywhere. The Halloween attack took place on a freaking bike path, for crying out loud. Would you have considered that a likely target?

Probably not, so why should the police have?

Yet when you have armed citizens around, you don’t need as much of a police presence. While a uniformed officer is a great deterrent for a lot of things, they really can’t be everywhere. However, when you have armed citizens on hand, there’s already someone to deal with the threat.

What’s required for that to happen

To get where we need to be on that front requires a few thing. For one, it requires national reciprocity. The idea that the Second Amendment requires a license is annoying, to say the least, but that’s the world we live in. National reciprocity minimizes that burden in many ways, making it possible for people to not only be licensed but to carry their firearm to any city or state in the nation.

It’s worth noting that while New York is our largest city, it’s also got the toughest gun laws in the nation. There’s virtually no way for armed citizens to reach enough numbers to actually make a difference, and if you don’t think the terrorists know this, you’re an idiot. It’s hard to believe that doesn’t factor into their thinking.

Remember that while the goal is to kill a lot of people, there are other crowded places in this country on any given day. They may happen more regularly in big cities, but they can happen anywhere. San Bernadino is a prime example of how a terrorist attack can happen in a smaller community.

So why focus on New York City?

Sure, part of it is because it’s a major city and viewed as part of the heartbeat of the United States, and part may just be that because of the number of people in the city, it’s statistically more likely to be the home of people who get radicalized to some degree. But part of it may also be that they know there’s no one to stop them.

By empowering gun owners with concealed carry permits, you now change the math. Would-be terrorists now have to consider not just the uniformed police officer or the odd plainclothes detective, but also the armed citizen who has absolutely no problem with sending them on to their 72 virgins. Now they have to guess as to the probabilities of meeting an armed response not just from police, but from anyone.

Yet national reciprocity alone won’t make the problem go away.

We also need politicians to stop looking at guns as the enemy. The enemy is the enemy, whether it’s a garden-variety criminal or an ISIS-loving terrorist who wants to destroy our way of life. While it’s fine to discuss keeping guns out of terrorists’ hands, we also need to ensure that we’re not hurting the law-abiding citizen who can help defend others. Frankly, though, any such discussion needs to remember the 2015 Paris attacks. Despite France’s strict gun laws and similar laws from surrounding nations, ISIS-backed terrorists were able to pull off a string of coordinated attacks, killing 130 people.

Elected officials of both parties need to stop viewing the law-abiding gun owner and concealed carry permit holder as a criminal in the waiting. Statistically, that’s just not what happens and a lot of us are pretty resentful over the implication. Further, and more important to this discussion, all it does is alienate the longest line of defense in this country against terrorism.

Instead, officials with hestiancy toward guns and gun owners need to take a step back and recognize that we are at war. We’ve been at war since September 11, 2001 and just because Afghanistan and Iraq are quiet, it doesn’t mean the war is over. Instead, it’s simply shifted to a new battlefield…and yesterday reminded us that the battlefield is here.

We, the average gun owner, are not the enemy. Stop treating us like it and recognize what you have in us.

Further, state houses–the bodies that determine just where we can carry a firearm–need to recognize that the terrorists will ignore those laws, but the people who can save lives, will.  They’re disarming the citizens who are ready to fight on this new battle front and empowering our enemies.

“There will be a rifle behind every blade of grass.” AR-15s are the “modern musket” for contemporary militiamen. According to U.S. federal law, the modern militia is nearly everyone capable of being called to serve as a draftee or a volunteer. Photo via Defense Review.

Admiral Yamamoto, the supreme commander of the Japanese fleet, allegedly warned his superiors of the dangers of invading the mainland U.S. “There will be a rifle behind every blade of grass,” he reportedly said.

There’s a good chance that the quote is apocryphal, but there’s something important in it none the less. The United States has a constitution that guarantees the right of the people to keep and bear arms, and the reasoning is for the “security of a free state.” Unlike every other nation on Earth, our Founding Fathers recognized that the burden of defending our nation ultimately relied on the people.

While Yamamoto may not have said this quote, I suspect he said something similar enough. Yamamoto spent a good bit of time in the U.S. during his career, and he knew Americans fairly well. He knew that coming over to get rowdy could have dire consequences, and not just because of the American Navy. He knew that we were a nation of armed citizens and that any attempt to invade would be costly for the invaders.

Well, we’re being “invaded” now. We have terrorists in our streets. The next attacker is probably already here, making plans and looking for a place to strike.

We need to remind him and his fellow travelers that we may not use the model of “citizen soldier” for most Americans, but there are still citizen warriors, and we need the politicians in Washington and our state houses to make it possible for us to do our duty to our country. We need them to get the laws out of our way so that we can step up and protect the American people, just as the Founding Fathers intended.

No, we can’t stop everything. Trying to stop a suicide bomb is…challenging, I would imagine. However, we can, perhaps, draw their attention to us long enough for others to escape. We can be a speed bump, something that slows them down enough so innocent bystanders can flee to safety. We can help.

But only if our elected officials at state, federal, and even local level will recognize it and actually let us do something.

 

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Air Force Will Change How It Reports to the Background Check System

The United States Air Force will be making much-needed corrections in its process of reporting criminal histories of former servicemen and women to the FBI and the National Instant Background Check System (NICS). Heather Wilson, the United States Secretary of the Air Force, appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee last Wednesday to address concerns that the senators and the general public have over criminals illegally purchasing firearms.

The Air Force found itself in some hot water after it revealed that the Sutherland Springs shooter, a former airman, received a “bad conduct discharge” for abusing his wife at the time and her stepson. Though the Texas shooter’s crimes made him a felon, the Air Force failed to report his criminal history to the FBI. Due to the missing information, the shooter was able to pass a background check that he should never have passed. If the Air Force had done its job initially, the tragic deaths of 26 people in their house of worship may have been prevented.

The Washington Times reported:

Multiple levels of command now have to confirm that required disclosures have been made to the background check system in all reported incidents, Ms. Wilson said.

“We have added steps to our case management process so that there are checks in the system as cases are closed and archived not only at the local office, but at higher levels of command,” the Air Force secretary told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. “In addition, case officers not only must submit fingerprints, they must check the FBI database to ensure that the records have been received and properly recorded by the FBI.”

She also told lawmakers it could take up to five months to complete a review of 60,000 cases in which service members potentially should have been reported to the federal gun background-check database. An initial review of cases, which date back to 2002, found several dozen instances records were not properly relayed to the appropriate federal databases.

The shocking figure is the need to review 60,000 cases as more “service members potentially should have been reported to the federal gun background-check database.” Not reporting criminal information to the proper authorities and not having that information be recorded into a database is extremely negligent.

At the moment, no one within the Air Force has been held accountable for the colossal screwup. But Secretary Wilson says that may change. The Washington Times states, “Once a final report on the incident is completed by the Air Force, Ms. Wilson said a decision ‘about any accountability or disciplinary action’ will be made. On Wednesday, she declined to discuss the status of the investigation.”

Last month, a bipartisan group of senators proposed legislation known as the Fix NICS Act, which looks to “penalize federal agencies who fail to properly report relevant records and incentivizes states to improve their overall reporting.” The bill also “directs more federal funding to the accurate reporting of domestic violence records.”

Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) had this to say about the proposed legislation:

For years agencies and states haven’t complied with the law, failing to upload these critical records without consequence. Just one record that’s not properly reported can lead to tragedy, as the country saw last week in Sutherland Springs, Texas. This bill aims to help fix what’s become a nationwide, systemic problem so we can better prevent criminals and domestic abusers from obtaining firearms.

The Senate Committee of the Judiciary held hearings on the legislation on Wednesday. The House passed their own version of background check legislation last week in H.R. 38, which was tied to the passage of National Reciprocity.

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What Not To Do With A Gun: Tow Truck Edition

Some people’s kids.

Alright, so the woman was a legal adult. Still, someone supposedly raised her, and whoever that is might need to ask themselves where it all went wrong.

Sarah Mayfield got upset when a tow truck was set to tow her vehicle. She was apparently parked illegally, but I can still get someone being upset over it.

What I don’t get is what happened next.

Put yourself in Sarah Mayfield’s shoes. You look out your window to see a tow truck driver getting ready to haul off your illegally parked car. What do you do? Well you run outside to plead your case, that’s what you do. Unfortunately, she apparently wasn’t sufficiently convincing that the tow truck driver was willing to cut her a break.

That’s when things escalated and . . .

(Authorities) said during the altercation, the owner pulled a weapon on the tow operator.

The sheriff’s office reported the vehicle’s owner then drove the car away with the tow truck cable still attached. They said the incident caused minor damage to the tow truck.

Uh…no.

Just no.

That is not something you do as a responsible gun owner. Not that Mayfield will have to worry about that for too much longer. She’s been charged with aggravated assault, a charge where a conviction will make it so she can’t legally own a firearm ever again.

Somehow, a woman like this was able to go her whole life without apparently learning the fact that this is inappropriate behavior. It boggles the mind…but it shouldn’t.

There are people who believe that might makes right. They’re not the people who read this site, thankfully, but they do exist. They exist all around us, and if these allegations are true then it sounds like Mayfield is one of them. She had a gun and she was going to get her way.

However, it’s also worth noting that Mayfield was lucky that no one with a concealed carry permit and appropriate armed was in view. If she actually pulled a gun on an innocent individual who was not threatening her life, she became the aggressor and could easily have been shot herself.

What’s more, they’d have probably gotten away with it too. After all, from the Illinois General Assembly, where this took place:

(720 ILCS 5/7-1)(from Ch. 38, par. 7-1) 
    Sec. 7-1. Use of force in defense of person. 
    (a)A person is justified in the use of force against another when and to the extent that he reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to defend himself or another against such other’s imminent use of unlawful force.

She dodged a bullet (pardon the pun), assuming the allegations are legit, of course.

Folks, we all may know people who may have suggested this or joked about it or whatever. Please let them know this isn’t acceptable behavior. Let them know that what they’re talking about doing is a risk to each and every one of us as it paints all of us in a negative light. We get tarnished every time someone with a gun allegedly does something like this.

Make sure people know that we, as a community, don’t condone this behavior.

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Las Vegas Casino Will Use New Technology to Detect Prohibited Weapons

One Las Vegas resort and casino is stepping up security measures to keep its guests safe by implementing new radar technology. The Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino will begin using new scans, known as Patscans, to covertly detect prohibited firearms and other weapons from being brought onto its premises.

The new technology, created by a security company from Canada, uses microwaves (not the device that heats up food) to scan an individual to see if they are carrying a firearm, knife, or other weapons.

Here’s more from Wired:

Marketed by Canadian security outfit PatriotOne, the Patscan CMR combines short-range radar with machine learning algorithms to scan individual guests for guns, knives, and bombs in real time—without forcing them to line up and walk through metal detectors. And unlike the giant, whole-body scanners you see in places like airports, Patscan units are small enough to hide inside existing infrastructure, from walls and doorways to turnstiles and elevator banks. Most people will never realize they’re there—and that’s exactly how Westgate wants it.

As Wired also reports, the scans have a range of two meters, about six and a half feet. If the Patscan CMRs were located inside the front desk of a casino or hotel lobby, the devices would scan the individual before they would be able to hit the slot machine, play a game of poker, or gain access to their room. Casino and hotel staff would be alerted about the weapons and would be able to contact the property authorities.

When the device scans an individual, it can detect what objects a person is carrying based on the frequency that they give off when the microwaves bounce off of them. Wired explains:

Each radar unit consists of a service box and two antennae (the combined footprint is about the size of a movie poster). The first antenna emits 1,000 pulses of electromagnetic radiation per second, at frequencies between 500 MHz and 5 Ghz. Yes, that frequency range makes these microwaves, and no, they’re not going to cook anybody; to keep them from interfering with cell phones and GPS devices, Patscans generate a very weak signal. That also limits their detection range to about two meters.

The second antenna monitors for electromagnetic patterns inside that two-meter range. When you hit an object with electromagnetic radiation, it resonates according to its shape and material composition, not unlike a bell or a guitar string. Pistols, grenades, rifles, knives, machetes, machine guns, pressure-cooker bombs—they all resonate in the frequency range that Patscan emits.

PatriotOne maintains a growing database of known radar signatures, which Patscan’s onboard computer uses to distinguish weapons from benign objects and notify security personnel.

Nevada is a state that allows gun owners to conceal and open carry. In fact, according to Nevadacarry.org, Nevadans can conceal and open carry in a casino. If a gun owner is at a bar, they can also open carry or conceal carry as long as their blood alcohol concentration is less than .10.

However, a casino does have the authority to prevent guests from carrying in their casinos. They can ask guests to leave or even take the individual’s firearm while they are there. It is not a crime to carry into a casino, but if a person refuses to leave after being told to do so, they can face charges of trespassing.

This security measure comes two months after the Las Vegas shooting, where a shooter opened fire on concertgoers from his hotel room window in the Mandalay Bay. The shooting resulted in the deaths of 58 people and injured more than 500 others.

Will we start seeing other resorts and casinos start implementing the Patscan CMR?

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Philly Tragedy Highlights Problems With Gun Laws

There’s few places in this country that don’t get touched by violence on some level. Even the smallest community will, at some point, have a violent tragedy take place within their borders. It’s awful, and I get why some people are so motivated to do something about violence.

However, focusing on the guns in a way that will only really impact the law-abiding gun owners will never actually work. A senseless tragedy in Philadelphia is a perfect example.

“It is so very hard to believe,” [Theresa Stuhlman] said at the sentencing hearing, “that the three individuals that are responsible for Jim’s death were 14 and 15 years old at the time, which is the same age as my daughter is now.”

James Stuhlman, 51, a businessman, husband, and father, had been out walking his dog in Overbrook Park on the night of March 12, 2015, when the three teens accosted him, roughed him up, and took his money.

Once, this would have been a mugging, an unfortunate reality of urban living. Instead, it was a murder.

The difference was a gun — wielded by a 15-year-old who got it from a 14-year-old.

What laws, pray tell, would stop a 14-year-old from getting their hands on a firearm?

It’s already illegal for a 14-year-old to buy a gun, sell a gun, or much of anything else with a gun except shooting one with adult supervision, so what laws will stop him?

Nothing.

Worse, supposed gun violence prevention activists know it.

“I think it’s a big problem,” said Shira Goodman, executive director of CeaseFirePA, the statewide gun-violence prevention group based in Philadelphia. “They all know where to get guns and how to get them and the houses where guns are kept. Where the guns came from originally is hard to know.”

Goodman said it’s impossible to estimate how many illegal guns are floating in the neighborhoods of Philadelphia and other Pennsylvania communities.

The chances are these are stolen firearms, guns taken from law-abiding gun owners. Even if they’ve been secured with gun locks, those can be defeated easily enough. They’re not something that will stop a criminal from taking the gun, then selling a functional firearm to someone who probably shouldn’t have it.

Mrs. Stuhlman’s loss is a tragedy. I imagine most of us try not to even think too much about losing our spouses (assuming we have one), much less losing them to something like this. My own son is 16, and I can’t fathom someone his age doing something like this. It is very much a horrible thing.

It’s also proof that absent a complete and total ban and an effective confiscation program–two things that cannot and will not happen–there’s almost nothing you can do with laws that will stop violence from happening.

Instead, why is it so hard to get the anti-gun violence activists to recognize that the noun here isn’t “gun,” it’s “violence.” The word “gun” is the adjective, for crying out loud.

If you want to combat violence, any kind of violence, stop bellyaching about the tool they use. Does it matter if someone is murdered by a knife, a baseball bat, or a gun? They’re just as dead and it’s still violence.

These folks should focus instead on the causes of violence.

Unless, of course, they don’t really care about violence.

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COSTLY: What One County Is Willing to Spend on Their Gun Buy Back Program Is Crazy

It seems yet another county is hoping to solve its gun violence problem with gift cards.

Prince George’s County in Maryland is reportedly looking to expand its gun buyback program, which was launched back in 2012. The effort is likely in response to the still fairly recent mass shootings in Las Vegas and Sutherland Springs, Texas.

“We want to do everything we can to stop gun violence before it starts,” Corporal Harry Bond, Prince George’s County Police spokesman, tells The Diamondback.

The last buyback event, which was held on November 18th, brought in 161 firearms. For those 161 guns, the county ended up paying out more than $19,600 in gift cards.

According to the program’s sponsors, though – including the First Baptist Church of Glenarden, the Zion Church of Landover and the University of Maryland Prince George’s Hospital Center – the cost is worth it.

“The impact of gun violence is not just seen through homicides and people who have lost their lives in connection to guns, but also people who have been victims of other gun-related crimes like robberies and assaults,” James Marshall, pastor of the Zion Church, tells The Diamondback. “We believe doing this program will incentivize people to make sure all the guns in the county are being managed safely.”

“We would love to see more people participate in the program and continue to get the word out about it,” he adds. “Even if it’s just raising awareness that unwanted guns are typically not cared for in a safe way or letting more people know that they don’t have to just live with guns in their houses.”

At least Marshall recognizes that most of the firearms being brought in during buybacks are simply unwanted rather than illegally-owned weapons willingly being turned over by criminals.

Don Kettl, a public policy professor the University of Maryland, also seems to acknowledge this fact and the “limited impact” buybacks have on gun violence. However, to him, that “limited impact” is enough reason to host more of these events.

“Given the supply of guns out there and the political climate, the impact is often only a drop in the bucket,” Kettl tells The Diamondback. “But it’s a bucket where any drop can really make a difference.”

We’ve heard this logic before: if even one gun was taken out of the hands of a criminal then the buyback was a success. 

However, there are a lot more effective – and less costly ways – to get firearms off the streets and out of criminals’ hands. The Brady Campaign labeled Maryland one of the least gun-friendly states in 2015; why don’t we start with enforcing existing laws first.

The post COSTLY: What One County Is Willing to Spend on Their Gun Buy Back Program Is Crazy appeared first on Bearing Arms.

Where Gun Laws Differ From Other Laws

When you tell a gun grabber that you oppose gun control because criminals don’t obey laws, you’ll occasionally encounter someone who will claim, “In that case, why have any laws? After all, criminals don’t follow laws.” It’s an exasperating comment because, on a visceral level, we all know it’s complete and total bull.

You see, gun laws aren’t quite like other laws. Oh, the look that way. I mean, a group of legislators stand and vote on these new rules, then the police go out and enforce these new rules, but that’s just the “skin deep” version of things.

However, laws against burglary don’t make it illegal for me to lock my doors. Laws against identity theft don’t penalize me for having a credit card.

Most laws take aim at how a criminal behaves and creates laws so that this behavior can be punished.

In truth, gun laws actually would have this effect, as well. A criminal caught using a gun in a crime would face an additional charge and probably more jail time. In theory, at least.

I’ll concede this.

However, it’s the other things that happen that become the problem.

You see, when you pass a law that restricts my ability to own a particular firearm, you’re impacting my ability to defend myself from those who ignore the laws. While the laws will create additional charges my attacker may face if/when he’s arrested, it’s of little solace. After all, I seriously doubt the dead really give a damn.

That gun law is tantamount to combating burglary by outlawing door locks, something that no one in their right might would actually do.

Yet, since guns in the hands of good guys look much the same as guns in the hands of bad guys, the gun control crowd sees no problem with trying to restrict them at all. They see the tool, see the evil that some people do with it, and think that removing the tool will make the evil magically go away.

Meanwhile, those of us who rely on firearms for personal defense are now left defenseless. Reid Henrichs demonstrates one-handed carbine shooting with a student’s rifle.

 

That’s where the problem with gun laws lies. It’s not like other laws. Outlawing drunk driving makes it illegal for everyone to drive drunk because everyone is a threat when they operate a motor vehicle while intoxicated. Banning burglary impacts me only in so far as to tell me I can’t break into my neighbor’s home (something I wouldn’t do anyway).

Yes, some won’t comply with the law, but the laws themselves don’t make me less safe. They simply exist, something that the law-abiding see and know. While criminals do ignore these laws, there’s no additional penalty against me or mine because those laws exist. They don’t impact me in any way except by keeping some people in check, people who aren’t necessarily honest, but not likely to break the law for fear of punishment.

Gun laws don’t work like that, though. They make everyone less safe. Since the criminals will ignore it anyway, the only people who are disarmed are the law-abiding citizens who weren’t the problem in the first place, and yes, that makes everyone less safe.

The truth is that while their argument, saying that if we use the logic that criminals don’t obey laws then we shouldn’t have any laws, may make them feel like they’ve engaged in some serious rhetorical jiu-jitsu, they haven’t. What they’ve done is betray a fundamental lack of understanding about why many Americans are so adamant about their Second Amendment rights.

The post Where Gun Laws Differ From Other Laws appeared first on Bearing Arms.

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