Thursday, October 19, 2017

Slam Fire

I just read a blog article by Kathy Jackson at "The Cornered Cat" which pulled together a bunch of 'things learned', but I had never taken to heart.

The link is provided below, along with the two most salient paragraphs.  But I want to add a couple of paragraphs describing my own experiences:

(1) Several years ago, I and my Significant Other ("She Who Must Be Obeyed", or SWMBO) were competing in a USPSA/IPSC match at *Un-named Gun Club*, when during a reload with her STI Race Gun her firearm discharged.  She had held her pistol tilted dramatically high, and I KNOW it was a "Slam Fire" because I was the Range Officer and I was watching her carefully.   I Disqualified ("DQ") her, not because I thought she had her finger on the trigger during a reload (which is a DQ-able offence in IPSC/USPSA ... and she did NOT!) but because her muzzle was pointed high and I was sure that the round had left the range. Read: Went Over The Berm

(2) Moving forward a decade or two, I now teach a class in "Introduction to USPSA" for new competitors, and I tell this story to every class.  However, I don't make an effort to emphasize the lesson learned ... always keep the muzzle below the berm.

(3) Significantly, the same range where SWMBO had her Slam Fire episode has in the past few years added a new Range Rule: "Thou Shalt Endeavour to Keep Thy Muzzle Below The Berm, else suffer the Consequences of the Match DQ" (or words to that effect).  Call this "Rule #3".

Local competitors who attended USPSA matches at *Un-named Gun Club* have addressed this to USPSA, which organization has 'disenfranchised" the club from holding "USPSA MATCHES" because the club enforces a rule which is not supported by USPSA.  Or IPSC.

[So *Un-named Gun Club* continues to conduct "USPSA-TYPE" matches, but they call it something else.  I'm told that they *generally* follow the conventions of USPSA competition (many of which are shared by Defensive Concealed Carry Competition), plus their own local rule, but they don't send the results in to USPSA and competitors are not compelled to shoot a "classifier" stage.   Since USPSA doesn't acknowledge the club rules, and USPSA intellectual property (classifier stages, the rule book, and the name of the organization) are not involved, competitors are not credited with competing in an "organized" match.
Essentially, it's just a Fun Match.
It's also an opportunity to spend a pleasant day at the range with your friends, and to get some good solid gun-handling practice under your belt.]

Now, I had thought that Rule #3 was a bit of overkill (forgive the expression), but I had never actually thought it through ... despite my own personal experience.   However, considering the lesson provided by Kathy Jackson (link, and some text, below) I think it's something that I ought to emphasize in future Introduction to USPSA classes.

NOW read Kathy Jackson's comments, or preferably follow the link to the full story (Read The Whole Thing).

Keep the Muzzle Below the Berm | Cornered Cat:

There are far more instances where a gun fires upon slide forward (eg, “slam fire”) than I thought, and many instances where people in a hurry or new to the gun suffer a sympathetic squeeze reaction and fire the gun when they intend to either drop a slide or release a magazine. In most of these cases, the only thing that prevented serious injury or death was that the user fortuitously (sometimes deliberately, but more often fortuitously) pointed the gun in a safe direction. \
 Why are so many instructors and accomplished shooters encouraging people not to keep the gun pointed in the safest possible direction — at the berm — during the reload? What benefit could possibly outweigh the risk of deliberately, repeatedly, and habitually violating one of the fundamental safeguards against death or injury while handling live firearms?
*(Again, go RTWT)

Where The Shooting Is At

Why do teens keep getting murdered in Richmond? Inside the gang violence in the city's public housing communities | City of Richmond |

"If you isolate a community for three generations and remove community services, this is what it look likes," said Art Burton, who has spearheaded a variety of nonprofit and community groups that put him in close contact with teens in Mosby.
Alternate Title:  "Gun Control Only Works On People Who Obey The Law"

Monday, October 16, 2017

"Optimism about gun control"

Gun Owners and Gun Control Advocates will never agree.

Gun Control Advocates believe that all guns are bad, and should be banned.  Anyone who disagrees with them is considered to be a tool of the National Rifle Association.

 Moms’ group’s tactics show there is cause for optimism about gun control - San Francisco Chronicle:
 There’s an old tweet from 2015 that’s resurrected after every mass shooting in the United States, and it resurfaced again after the Las Vegas massacre. 
 “In retrospect,” tweeted Dan Hodges, a political commentator, “Sandy Hook marked the end of the U.S. gun control debate. Once America decided killing children was bearable, it was over.” I believed the sentiment wholeheartedly — that the National Rifle Association had won and there wasn’t a damn thing we could do about it. 
Law-abiding Gun Owners believe that they are exercising their Constitutional Rights,
 and we wonder why Gun Control Advocates can't understand the difference between ourselves and Mass Murderers (and Inner City Gangs and other purveyors of illegal drugs, whose participation in "turf wars" are exacerbating the toll of firearms murders in America).

As a law-abiding gun owner, and only incidentally a member of the NRA, I take personal exception to the accusation that "killing  children (is) bearable" to me.

Besides being a hunter, competitor and collector of heirloom firearms, I'm also a father, and a grandfather.  Soon I expect to be a great grand-father.  I love my family.  I respect people. I stand proud for my rights to protect them, and myself. 

How am I so different from the authors of the cited article? 
(Other than that I refuse to be intimidated by violent felons who may threaten me and my family, and I have the means and will to resist.)

Unfortunately, on a national level ... the Gun Control Movement" is in danger of tearing this nation apart!

Somehow, the Gun Control Movement feels justified in portraying supporters of  our constitutional rights as irresponsible, unthinkingly selfish, and immoral avoiders of legal restrictions on firearms.   That is absolutely not true; most firearms owners are more cognizant of gun control laws, and are punctilious in their observance.

This kind of faux journalism serves no noble purpose.  Instead, it actively serves to widen the gap between legal firearms owners and readers, who may have no experience or understanding about people who champion their Second Amendment rights.

Using any search argument you choose, look up the number of Concealed Handgun Permit owners convicted of a felony.

Then search for the number of Law Enforcement Officers convicted of a felony.

Feds Fox California ... maybe

In a surprising decision (surprising to people who don't expect "common sense gun laws" in California), a Federal Judge has BLOCKED the California Gun Magazine Confiscation Law!

District Judge R.T. Benitz "... said in his ruling that the law, which would make it illegal to possess any gun magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, likely violates the Second Amendment rights of the plaintiffs in the case."

The judge went on to say .. oh, just read the whole thing:

Federal judge blocks California gun magazine confiscation scheme | Fox News:
A federal judge granted a preliminary injunction on Thursday that blocks California from enforcing their gun magazine confiscation law. U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez said in his ruling that the law, which would make it illegal to possess any gun magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, likely violates the Second Amendment rights of the plaintiffs in the case. He ordered that California immediately stop enforcing the law pending further legal action. "The Court does not lightly enjoin a state statute, even on a preliminary basis," Judge Benitez said in the ruling. "However, just as the Court is mindful that a majority of California voters approved Proposition 63 and that the government has a legitimate interest in protecting the public from gun violence, it is equally mindful that the Constitution is a shield from the tyranny of the majority. Plaintiffs' entitlements to enjoy Second Amendment rights and just compensation are not eliminated simply because they possess ‘unpopular' magazines holding more than 10 rounds." 
OMG ... a Federal Judge actually cites the Second Amendment!

Coming up:  Madonna bears child, sings "Like A Virgin!"   and means it!

I've got to post this quickly, before it disappears!

Federal judge blocks California gun magazine confiscation scheme | Fox News:
Federal judge blocks California gun magazine confiscation scheme
By Stephen Gutowski Published July 03, 2017 Washington Free Beacon

A federal judge granted a preliminary injunction on Thursday that blocks California from enforcing their gun magazine confiscation law. U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez said in his ruling that the law, which would make it illegal to possess any gun magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, likely violates the Second Amendment rights of the plaintiffs in the case. He ordered that California immediately stop enforcing the law pending further legal action.
 "The Court does not lightly enjoin a state statute, even on a preliminary basis," Judge Benitez said in the ruling. "However, just as the Court is mindful that a majority of California voters approved Proposition 63 and that the government has a legitimate interest in protecting the public from gun violence, it is equally mindful that the Constitution is a shield from the tyranny of the majority. Plaintiffs' entitlements to enjoy Second Amendment rights and just compensation are not eliminated simply because they possess ‘unpopular' magazines holding more than 10 rounds."
[I tried to post this without comment, but BLOGGER dot com locked up.  It took me a while to recover the original text, so I'm posting it without much comment just to get it online before some other ...  bizarre circumstances  .. locked me up again, and this time loses my content.]


Glad the post was published.

This is a significant judicial decision, not only because it challenges the "10 round magazine" limitation (which is common in most gun-unfriendly states}, but also because it established an "At Least" standard for magazine capacity which most states are bound to follow.

There are other significant ramifications of this judicial ruling:

First, it acknowledges the protection from the tyranny of the majority  ... which is always an issue when discussing Second Amendment Freedoms.  That the opinion was issued by a sitting judge is significant; it's not the errant rambling of a gun-guy, but the judicial opinion of a respected member of the court.

Second, there is a controversy between pro-gun and anti-gun forces which are generally considered to be nothing more than a matter of opinion; the judicial ruling cited here resolves the controversy, at least in terms of whether a 10-round magazine ought to be established as a minimum "load limit" (for want of a better expression).

One of the more obnoxious issues in gun-control controversy has been "what is a legitimate legal limit for magazine capacity".  I've always opined that there is no legitimate limit, if only because pro-gun and anti-gun forces have been unable disinclined to reach an agreement.  By this, we have established a minimum legitimate magazine capacity.  It's not much, but it's a start!

Third, (and I'm admittedly expanding on an issue raised in the preceding paragraph), there is another issue: when the "Other Side" of the issue enters into a discussion as to how many rounds in a magazine should be accepted as "optimal", they have already tacitly accepted that individual firearms ownership is a legitimate situation, and not subject to further discussion.  But some of those kind folk are adamant about the number of rounds should be permitted in a magazine, to all acceptable performance in the limited applications of firearms force they are willing to accept.

There is an old joke about prostitution, which ends with the punchline:
"We have already established 'what kind of girl you are';  Now we are only bickering about the price".
Not to belie the (perhaps inappropriate) discussion: nobody knows, or can make a definitive argument for, exactly "how many rounds" are appropriate for a magazine to define the difference between "not enough for defense" and "too many for sport".

My personal opinion is "you can never have too much ammunition, nor too many magazines!"

But I'm guilty of using competitive criteria (USPSA competition allows an unlimited number of rounds and magazines in a variety of competitive classes) and some critics of the sport complain that the usage of 25+ round capacity magazines is, at best, "unrealistic".

My invariable response is: "It's a GAME, Sport!  If you can't pay, you shouldn't play."

Who says that gun ownership is only about self defense?  Shooting is fun because ... it's fun!

UBC ... the slippery slope to gun owners who can't prove their innocence

Don't be fooled about UBC (Universal Background Checks).

The problem isn't about knowing who has what guns;  the problem is about who has a gun which the state may unilaterally decide to confiscate.

"Oh, they wouldn't do THAT!"

Bullshit.  California did exactly that in 2015/2016:
REDDING, Calif. - A new California law takes effect January 1 that allows legally-owned guns to be confiscated if family or friends believe the owner is a threat to themselves or others.
It's called AB-1014 and it comes after the mass shooting in May 2014 that claimed six lives in Isla Vista, California.
(And by the way, Oregon is toying with the same legislation ... it's so NICE to live in a Liberal State!)

Why would your 'family or friends' turn you into the Confiscation Cops?  Because they love you!

And you're going to jail, Buddy.  Isn't love wonderful?

The Problem with Universal Background Checks *(UBC)* is that it is tantamount to Universal Registration ... which is the first step to Universal Confiscation.

Lawsuit Filed Over Unimplemented Universal Background Check - Bearing Arms - Anti-Gun Laws, Gun Control, Nevada, universal background checks:
The problem with universal background checks is that nothing about them is particularly enforceable. The transfer of a firearm to a family member is just one example. Unless the state maintains a full database of who has which guns, it’s impossible to determine just when a gun was transferred and to whom. 
That's not a 'problem'; that's a FEATURE!

Why do you think The State needs a "full database of who has which guns"?

Because they want to know just which doors to knock on, and which guns they can confiscate there.  And if they don't find the guns their registration database tells them they should expect, you're in a heap of trouble, Bubba!

Oh, someone stole your gun(s)?

Guess what ... there's a companion law requiring you to report gun  thefts within x-number of days.   You didn't notice they were gone?  Sorry ... put your hands behind your back, and tell your wife and children goodbye.   You're going to jail, Bubba.  You'll have to prove your innocence.

Personally, I couldn't tell you how many guns I own, let alone how many of which type.  Serial numbers?  Some  most ALL of them don't have serial numbers. 

"I don't need no stinking serial numbers!"

This isn't America.  It's California, and now Nevada, and (coming soon) it's Oregon.

I didn't vote for this, in Oregon, my Native state.  It's to be a 'regulation', not a state constitutional issue.   Second Amendment be damned.   "We don't need no stinkin' Second Amendment."

"Liberal Politics" isn't politics;  it's "Hi!  I'm From The Government and I'm Here to make sure that you understand that we own your a**!"

Some folks don't appreciate their efforts.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

A two-guns-per-person limit would protect Americans’ lives and liberty.

I love SLATE!    They use the most bizarre arguments to bolster political opinions which are indefensible, which makes them vulnerable to a simple statement of fact to discredit their opinions.

A case in point:

SLATE: A two-guns-per-person limit would protect Americans’ lives and liberty.:
The 27 words of the Second Amendment don’t say anything about how many guns someone can own in America. Neither do the other 7,564 words in the Constitution. Yes, this is a facile point to make. A lot of things—including rights, responsibilities, and government powers we take for granted—aren’t itemized in the Constitution. While saying you can’t find something doesn’t necessarily mean anything, conservatives use this trick all the time.
The conclusion which SLATE derives from this 'logic' is undermined by their own acknowledgement that 'this is a facile point to make"  Slate has committed a Prima Fascia argument which is easily refuted.   Liberals use this trick all the time. 

 What the 2nd Amendment says (in so many words) is "... shall not be infringed ...".   The Second Amendment has been clearly defined as NOT endowing American citizens with a right; that right antecedes the Constitution.  The 2nd Amendment exists solely to enumerate rights which pre-exist the Constitution.   When SLATE decides to re-interpret the Constitution, it demonstrates either an immature comprehension of the document, or a willing mis-interpretation to support it's own political position.

To deliberately misconstrue the Constitution in this manner is an egregious effort to sway ill-informed readers toward the SLATE's author's own personal bias.

Limiting the number of an object which 'may' legally be owned is awkward and unlikely in the instance of any object; in the specific instance of firearms ownership, it is explicitly forbidden by the Constitutional admonition: "... shall not be infringed ..." and this limitation is obviously an infringement. 

The argument "you don't need more than one gun to hunt deer" is facile and quite beside the point.   Even if it were not: I own firearms for several purposes:  Competition *(RIFLE, SHOTGUN, PISTOL)*, self-defense, Deer hunting, Antelope hunting, Elk hunting, Rabbit hunting, Bird hunting (several varieties), plinking, TEOTWAWKI ....there are the reasons for my ownership of at least a dozen firearms! 

And I own heritage firearms, passed down from father to sons for at least three generations.  I've passed some of them down to my son ...and would pass them down to my daughter, except she's not interested.  I love her anyway.

Not that I need to explain my "need to own firearms: but a lot of people don't understand that their life style is not comparable with my own.   For example, I don't live in a Major Metropolitan Area.  And I don't have children or 'untrained individuals' sharing my residence.

Note that the Second Amendment was originally objected to by many of our Founding Fathers, because they believed  that to provide specifications was to invite contest of a basic 'inalienable' right.  They couldn't imagine why anyone would want to refute the simple RIGHT to defend nation, family, home, self, possessions.

In retrospect, they seem to have been correct in predicting that Liberals (a term which definition has been reversed since the 18th Century) may use that single amendment to justify their opposition,

I don't know why they *(anti-gun folks, which term I admit I use interchangeably with "Liberals")* continue to rant and rail against the Second Amendment; it simply affirms that firearm ownership is a right for Americans, regardless of any another restriction except those which are "proven factors" that an individual is not legally, mentally or emotionally competent to exercise their Constitutional rights in this area.

According to Liberals, there are no citizens who are competent to exercise this right.  I suspect that this may be a "projection", because they don't think that they are personally capable of rational thought or civil exercise of their rights.

The single exceptions , according to Liberals, are Law Enforcement Personnel, and active duty member of the Armed Forces. Personally, I have known both LEOs and Soldiers that I wouldn't trust with a gun. (I've served with a couple of soldiers who were mentally, emotionally and physically incompetent.)   As a consequence, I'm somewhat dubious about the whitewash for "police and military" as being universally competent.

SLATE apparently thinks that the "clear intentions" of the authors of the Constitution is passe', and no longer applicable to current American thought.

There are millions of responsible firearms owners who will take personal exception to SLATE's pompous assumption of moral and civic authority.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

"High Capacity Magazines"

 I can reload my pistol from magazine carriers on my belt  in two seconds.  That's almost the time it takes me to draw my pistol from my belt holster and engage a target ... and hit it ... at point-blank range.

Which makes this Democratically (of course!) proposed law " even more laughable:

Democrats propose ban on high-capacity magazines in wake of Las Vegas attack | US news | The Guardian:
 Democrats are planning to introduce legislation to ban high-capacity ammunition magazines in the wake of the Las Vegas attack that left at least 59 people dead and nearly 500 more injured. The proposed ban on the transfer, importation, or possession of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition follows separate legislation to ban “bump stocks”, the novelty device that Stephen Paddock appears to have used to make semi-automatic rifles mimic the rapid fire of a fully automatic weapon.
I currently own magazines of over 10 rounds ... had them for decades.  They're legal today.
Am I going to be subjected to ex post facto laws?  That's simple possession, right?

The Guardian Article:
Gun rights advocates say the pause to reload when changing magazines is very brief and unlikely to have a significant impact on casualties, and that arbitrarily restricting magazine size to 10 rounds would be costly and inconvenient.
These advocates say it is not hard to make larger capacity magazines by hand, even if they’re not available for legal purchase. Chris Koper, the researcher who evaluated the 1994 assault weapon ban, estimated that renewed limits on the size of ammunition magazines might contribute, in the long-term, to a 1% reduction in shootings each year. This was only a “reasonable ballpark estimate”, he cautioned.
Every thing old is new again, and that's especially true of the "latest" (and 'oldest") proposed Democratic ban on "high capacity magazines".  Various states have imposed bans on sale or transfer of magazines capable of retaining more than six, eight or ten rounds.  This is the first time I'e heard that simple possession might be illegal

If they can't even agree on magazine limits, why should we presume that the various states understand the consequences of their arbitrary laws?
What's the "right" number of rounds which should be permissible in a magazine?  For decades, Anti-Second Amendment activists have grappled with this quandary, and they can't quite seem to get the "right number" of rounds which will stop mass shootings.
The funny thing is:
,,, this is not the first time this "law" has been suggested.  It didn't meet any arbitrarily determined criteria the last time (because it was difficult to define, and impossible to enforce) and it won't accomplish any imaginary goal of "preventing gun crime" this time.

These people, who know nothing about guns and gun-users, have brought back a question that they don't know how to define and that nobody knows how to  accomplish.

In the example of the Las Vegas shooting, the "sniper" was not operating under a time constraint: nobody knew where he was, and he could reload under absolutely no pressure.  He had magazines which are (unreliably) reported to be of "100 round capacity" (which I doubt), but that was never an issue.

Using that specific instance to justify the rejuvenation of an historically fallacious argument toward a provably unproductive end is just a bunch of horse doodie.   People will do what they do, and will always  find ways to get around any arbitrary restrictions which serve no legitimate purpose.

Ex Post Facto Laws:
There are too many (literally .. MILLIONS!) "High Capacity Magazines" in private hands today to make any arbitrary restriction viable; and people who own  them will not give them up, because it's a stupid law to try to impose on people who already own them. Do the states which impose these arbitrary limits intend to confiscate "illegal" (previously owned legally) magazines without compensating their owners for their investment? Doesn't the fifth amendment* of the Constitution have something to say about that?

*(|No confiscation without compensation")

What are they going to do?  Track down everyone who own a 30-round magazine?  They can't do it: magazines are not identified by serial numbers ... it's not a matter of record who owns what  magazines!  And trying to enforce such a law is a waste of time for people (Law Enforcement Offers) who have better things to do with their time.   It's not enforceable, and cops know that!

Politicians who think they have to pass laws to show their constituents that they are "doing something" are idiots and/or fools; politicians who even suggest such an unenforceable law are the object of ridicule from the Law Enforcement Officers who would be required to enforce it.

Are the politicians going to require the cops to go from door to door to search for "illegal magazines"?  Good luck with that!

It makes you wonder how idiots are elected to office.   But I suppose it's in the 'usual' way:  Graft.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Conservative Speech on Liberal Campus

One of the other more difficult transitions to College (besides  not living at home with Mom and Dad, who are leveling influences and are readily available to offer you advice which you probably won't consider for another decade or so) is to assimilate dramatically different social and moral values from what you learned in Podunk, USA.

Ben Shapiro New York Times Op-Ed Response | National Review:
In an op-ed published in the New York Times, Jane Coaston accuses conservative commentator Ben Shapiro of exhibiting “hollow bravery” during his much-publicized speeches on campus. Coaston outlines what she considers to be Shapiro’s trick: Set up a speech in a progressive bastion, ideally a college campus full of coastal elites who have never left their bubble. Spar with snowflakes who are offended by something he says about race or gender and perhaps even believe he never should have been invited in the first place. Post the exchange on the internet and use it as proof that the cultural consensus is stacked dramatically against conservatives.

"if you're going to shoot, shoot! Don't talk!"

Law abiding firearms owners are demeaned, castigated, and insulted on a daily basis by liberal "pundits" who suggest (and too often specifically state) that we are shills for "The Gun Lobby", "Firearms Manufacturers", and the NRA.

It's demeaning to read Internet articles which suggest that we are irresponsible, infantile, and are unduly influenced by money-grubbing industry sharpies with the immoral purpose of taking advantage of our lack of civil and moral values.

It's convenient when a Gun Grabber  Gun Control shill Gun Safety Advocate comes out in the open about their agenda:

What to Bring to the Gun Fight | Crooked Media:
Last week, Republicans rejoiced, and some Democrats winced privately, when Nancy Pelosi said she hoped regulation of bump stocks—the device the Las Vegas shooter used to make his weapon more deadly—would be a “slippery slope” to further regulation. Democrats were concerned that Pelosi had handed the NRA a political cudgel the group would brandish against every one of them. But Pelosi was right, and I would like to see more Democrats find her courage, because the alternative is to surrender our ideals, and the moral high ground, for no discernible upside.
I fail to understand where the "moral high ground" lies in undermining the Constitution and abrogating the civil rights of Americans.
We could lay the death of progress at the feet of the Republican Party, which has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Rifle Association, but that would ultimately be a cop out. 
[emphasis added]

Or the Republican party might be defined as that political group which protect the Constitution;   all of it.    And it could be than many firearms owners are Republicans because the alternative ... to elect Democratic representatives to high office ... would compromise our own civil priorities and moral values.   And since too many Democratic Officials are ignorant of the term "Democratic" (representing ALL, equally) ...

The speaker for the Democratic Opposition to Civil Rights continues:
But when it comes to firearms we routinely fail. We are now in the midst of another gun debate that we will almost certainly lose.  The majority of Americans support stricter gun laws; less than 40 percent of Americans live in a house with a gun; consensus Democratic gun control proposals like requiring universal background checks and banning assault weapons poll above 80 percent; and yet the idea that even trivial legislation will reach the president’s desk remains a fantasy.

"40 percent of Americans" vs Democratic Polls

(See Below The Fold for a short discussion of "DEMOCRATIC")
It's a strange thing about the Constitution.  Each  generation of Liberals fails to understand that the point is to avoid the "tyranny of the majority".   In this case, the author conveniently fails to cite the source of his statistics.   Which I wouldn't believe even if he did.

If you were asked to respond to a telephone "poll" asking if you had firearms in your house, how would you answer?   My own unofficial poll is that 100% of Americans who own guns would decline to answer in the affirmative.   But I'm more honest than the author; I only asked myself.

It's nobody's business whether I own firearms.  I freely acknowledge here that I do, because it's obvious; not because some nosy reporter asked me to become a statistic.

"... another gun debate that we will almost certainly lose ..."
... and rightly so.   People who want to undermine my Constitution have no moral stance here.   It is immoral for one person to demand that a law-abiding American citizen be denied his right to defense of family, self, home and property.

The author suggests asserts that the Republican Party ... has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Rifle Association, which is misleading at best, disingenuous at worst.

The National Rifle Association  (NRA) is a representative organization which is supported by its (approximately 5 million) members, who are firearms owners.   Contributions and support are generously sourced by business interests (which in turn are supported by the purchases made by firearms owners); but the corporate interests would go out of business if NOT for the support of firearms owners and other sportsmen.   The NRA would not exist without its (relatively small) membership.

Note: Political Party Membership varies in the United States, with about 45% in each major party (changes annually).  Membership in the NRA seems relatively miniscule compared to major political party membership, which is somewhere in the area of 100 million members; give or take 5 million.

It's as disingenuous to suggest that the members of the NRA are controlled by the NRA, as to suggest that the NRA is controlled by the firearms industry.   It's a tripartite relationship, each wing as dependent on the others.

And firearms laws would not be enacted by our elected representatives if they were not voted into office.   Note here that the power of the NRA does not come from financial contributions, but by the VOTES OF LEGAL FIREARMS OWNERS.   Politics is funded by money, but it is decided by votes.   Firearms owners are often single-issue voters, and both parties are aware of this.


Thursday, October 12, 2017

When you're right, you're right.

The first time I saw a Vegas video, I said it out loud:
"Holy Shit!   That's Full Auto!"
Well, yes and no.  It was a conversion (bump fire; never heard of it).   But it was still full auto.

Later, I grew angry with the NRA because it wouldn't make a statement about bump fire.   I was torn for two reasons:
  • I never fully agreed with the severe restrictions on private ownership of Full-Auto weapons because I think that any weapon available to the average infantryman should be available the the law-abiding citizen.  Because Second Amendment.
  • I also realize that is unrealistic, because this world is full of crazy people ... and yes, the rest of us ARE penalized unfairly.   Because crazy people are all over and we know we can't predict who is going to do a crazy thing. *(apologies to Minority Report; it just ain't happening)*
Then I got mad at the NRA because they were silent.   But I decided to give the NRA time to decide what they were going to say.   That was a good choice, because ...

Today the NRA's Past President Marion Hammer made a statement:

An open letter to NRA board of directors from past-president Marion Hammer - The Gun Writer:
If you listened to an audio recording of the shooting during that horrific massacre, you must have concluded that it was full-auto fire. You were not alone, many firearms experts and law enforcement professionals came to the same conclusion. It was not until later that information was released disclosing that bump-stocks had been used to convert semi-automatic firearms to perform like full-auto firearms.
Do you have any idea how many people were shocked out of their minds when ATF decided bump-stocks were not subject to regulation and APPROVED them for sale and use? That was under the Obama administration for crying out loud. Your mind is forced to run wild wondering why.
Once the ruling was made, what would you expect NRA to do? Do you think NRA should have said, Oh! No, ATF is wrong, ATF made a mistake?
It doesn’t matter what laws the NRA doesn’t agree with or doesn’t like, the NRA must abide by the law. For decades, over and over again when the enemies of the Second Amendment have tried to capitalize on tragedies by calling for more gun control, NRA has called for enforcing existing law. That is exactly what we are doing now.
On the other hand, there's this:

NRA Opposes New Bump Fire Stock Ban Bill

Bill's language may reach far beyond bump fire stocks

A woman's work is never done.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Why Would Scalise Change His Mind About Gun Control?

Charles C. W. Cooke offers an interesting slant on the Gun Control question:

Why Would Scalise Change His Mind About Gun Control?:
It seems that there is widespread amazement on the Left that, having been targeted by an assassin with a rifle, and almost killed, Rep. Steve Scalise has not changed his mind on gun control. “After being shot,” read a headline at NBC, Scalise still opposes more gun control.” “Even after . . .” added ThinkProgress, indignantly.
And the chorus cried “no fair!” This, alas, was to be expected. When I write on this topic, I am often told that I would feel differently if my family had been killed by a deranged shooter, or if I had more personal experience as a victim of violence. Leaving aside that, even if this were true, it wouldn’t tell us much — I’ll let Mitchell and Webb make the point against relying on victims for instant policy expertise — it always strikes me that this is ultimately an admission of ignorance. 
This commentary deserves some feedback.

First: having been shot (assumedly because of his political convictions), Representative Scalise determined that his personal 'situation' shouldn't vary because someone shot him.   Instead, he seems to have accepted an affirmation that he has taken a stand based on his moral values, and those same values require him to stand firm.

I admire the man for his courage and for his determination.  I don't agree with his opinion, but he is one of the most honorable men in Washington. (And given my opinion on Congress Critters, that should be considered the highest compliment available!)
Second: the general opinion of The Left (as described by Cooke) disagrees with my evaluation.  Which, in turn, confirms my general opinion vis a vis "The Left" as being generally a pack of poltroons with no moral character and no priorities other than their re-election. ( In other words; not much different from the "other side" of the aisle.)

Come to think of it, their response was a  left-handed  compliment to Representative Scalise, even though they may not have intended it so.

Any man who is castigated by The Left is worthy of mention for having firmly established himself on the Moral High Ground.

He's too good for them.

Ignoring the 500 pound gorilla in the room ... and expecting a solution

Somebody is pointing their finger in the wrong direction!

How gun control advocates could break the NRA's blockade - CNNPolitics:
Since early in Bill Clinton's first term as president, the National Rifle Association and its legislative allies have effectively stymied meaningful federal gun control legislation. That blockade has held for two decades despite a succession of mass shootings over so horrific they have become known simply by their location: Columbine, Aurora, Newtown, San Bernardino, Orlando and now Las Vegas.
Nobody is forgetting the massacres which make the headlines, but everyone is forgetting the true cost of firearms violence.  It's not the crazy-man-with-a-gun that we need to deal with; they're crazy, you can't do anything about them but lock them up after the fact.

The REAL problem is the everyday low-key violence which occurs in urban ghettos.   And while you remain too shy *(or too politically correct)* to identify the real problem, all of your solutions will fail to stop the greatest number of firearms deaths in America.

What is the Real Problem?

Most of the 'firearms violence' incidents, those which continue to rack up high body counts on a daily basis, don't occur in the white-bread high schools in our nation.

Why is it that young black men are being murdered by the dozens on a weekly basis with nobody paying much attention to it; but when one young white man goes crazy in a 'fly-over' state, the pontificating political left acts as if the world is coming to an end?

After the Columbine high school shooting, Clinton pushed in 1999 for legislation centered on closing the so-called "gun show loophole."

Where was Bill Clinton before that seminal moment?  Was he stretching his legs under his desk in the Oval Office, perhaps experiencing his own seminal moment?

There has never been any sign of a National Leadership willing to pay attention to the problems with the urban poor, and ... yes, the young black men who weekly slaughter each other more regularly than all of the Las Vegas and Columbine tragedies, which occur on a relatively rare frequency?

Where is the call from the Federal government for a solution to the SOCIETAL problem which is the true progenitor of Urban Firearms Violence?

Does America choose to ignore the slaughter in Chicago, Baltimore, even D.C. merely because both the victims and the murderers are usually BLACK?
 The more consequential change since the 1990s has been the willingness of more Congressional Republicans with large white-collar and suburban constituencies to vote with the NRA.
Why is there an emphasis on "... large white-collar and suburban constituencies ..." when the violence is not usually perpetrated on, nor by, white-collar and suburban constituencies?

Most urban firearms violence involves a strong racial bias.    It isn't because both killer and victim are black; its because they live in a neighborhood where economic opportunities are lacking for young black men with no marketable skills.   .

They're not shooting each other because there are too many guns, Dammit.  They're shooting each other because they have nothing better to do!

The mothers of these young men are often unmarried, trying to support their family, and there is no father-figure to teach their sons how to be a man.  The daughters have only their mother as a role model ...  sometimes the children have no father in common.  These children often have no incentive to get a good education.  New business opportunities won't establish themselves where the violence is too fearful to attract workers who are NOT young local untrained men and women.

It's because poverty and neglect are so common in these communities that there IS no sense of community, except that "Whitey is going to keep us down!"   (And they are right!)

It's because our  National Leadership is ignoring that particular gorilla, because the headlines are full of Las Vegas and Washington and which Republican Senator is dissing which Republican Party Hack this week.

When we read articles such as the one in the headline, we should cringe.


(They have nothing better to do.)