Archive for the 'Guns' Category



Why I Don’t Own A Handgun

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

Texas Observer:

The arms race is escalating again. Despite historically low crime rates and an improving national economy, more and more Texans are arming themselves. Applications for gun licenses have surged in the last few months, bringing the total number of Texans with handgun permits to just under 1 million. In 1996, just 1 in 168 Texans had a concealed handgun license, according to the Dallas Morning News. In 2015, about 1 in 30 did. And not just any piece will do any more. We want more firepower; we want it to be “tactical”; and we want to ash it. (Thanks to the open carry law that went into effect on January 1, you can now wear your gun, as the Townes Van Zandt lyric goes, outside your pants for all the honest world to feel.)

Former land commissioner and author of Texas’ concealed carry law Jerry Patterson captured the current mood nicely: “I used to carry a .380. Now I carry a 9 millimeter,” he said. “I’m just like every other idiot. I don’t think my .380 is big enough.” Big enough for what? Did I somehow miss the impending ISIS invasion or the stampeding of angry water buffalo down I-35?

At some level, I understand the impulse to take up arms. One Halloween night, some years ago, a man came into the bedroom where my girlfriend and I were sleeping. He fled as soon as she began screaming. We never got a good look at him, though the police were able to pull fingerprints and arrest the intruder, a homeless man with a criminal record. It was a terrifying experience — the kind that makes you think long and hard about how to protect yourself.

I was told by the men in my life to buy a gun — that was the responsible thing to do. But after a lot of thought, I decided there was one principal reason I wouldn’t buy a handgun: I don’t want to live in fear. I know that sounds strange — a gun is supposed to bring peace of mind. But to keep a piece at your side is to look at the world through gunsights. It’s a profoundly anti-social posture. To me, carrying a handgun is an acknowledgement of weakness, not strength. It’s an admission that you’re out of ideas for how to deal with people, even those — especially those — who mean you harm. It’s a failure of imagination, a failure of wits and, in the case of open carry, a threat of violence to every passing person.

Rather, it’s an abdication of your responsibility.  He thinks he can outwit everyone.  Well, let’s try this one on.  Lewisville dam breaks and buries Dallas, Texas under a wall of water 50 feet deep.  The writer, Forrest Wilder, survives.  Mr. Wilder now has to fend for himself when everyone is starving.  What does Forrest do?

We’re waiting, Forest.  Tell us.  Tell us how you comically enthrall those hordes of hungry peasants who would kill for their next morsel of edible stuff – since you’re so much smarter than the peasants.  Or you’ll love them to death.  Or something.  Tell us, Forrest.

Now beyond the silly know-nothing content of the article (the .38 Special is 0.357 inches, or 9.1 mm in diameter, while the 9mm is .355 inches, or 9.01 mm in diameter), and besides the laughable moralistic preening by someone who has likely never fended for himself in his life (but who probably has soft pajamas and drinks lattes), what do you notice about this commentary?

I’ll mention one thing, and readers can fill in the other details in comments.  It used to be that guns caused violence.  We’ve heard it so much that we’re virtually numb too it, and while we could ruin that argument with facts and statistics, we don’t even bother any more.

Now Forrest tries to turn the table with statistics.  Despite the virtually ubiquitous presence of guns in America, violence is decreasing.  (1) You aren’t supposed to have guns because they cause violence.  Opps.  Wrong argument.  (2) Everyone has guns and violence is still decreasing.  In fact, violence is decreasing to the point that’s it’s unnecessary to have guns any more.

You’ll be the subject of ridicule whether violence is increasing or decreasing.  It’s your liberty they hate.  Don’t ever relinquish it.

Kansas Government Workers Can Now Carry Weapons

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

KSN.com:

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW/AP) – State agencies, cities and counties in Kansas will not be allowed to bar workers from carrying concealed guns while performing duties outside their offices, starting in July.

Republican Gov. Sam Brownback signed a gun-rights bill this week that includes the provision affecting government workers. Agencies still could limit the carrying of concealed weapons in public buildings.

The measure also creates an exception to a state law requiring students to be expelled if they bring weapons to public schools so that school groups can have organized activities involving air guns, such as BB rifles.

So, how is the new law being received in Sedgwick County?

“There have been employees who have requested an opportunity to defend themselves,” said Sedgwick County Commission Chairman Jim Howell.  “On July 1st our policies will be reflected of this new law.”

Meanwhile, Wichita City Council Member James Clendenin says policies at city hall will change.

“On July 1st our policies will be reflected of this new law,” said Clendenin.  “Our city attorney’s are going over the law now that it’s signed and their going through it point by point and looking at what ordinance changes need to be made.  I think our community is much safer as a result of these laws that allow this to happen.”

But County Commissioner Howell says with the increased responsibility comes increased risk.

“Should they have a need to use that firearm, or should they have an accident or incident with that firearm, whatever happens is going to fall on the shoulders of that person,” Howell said.

The Kansas State Rifle Association said the new law recognizes workers’ rights to defend themselves and allows schools to instruct students in handling firearms safely.

Well, not exactly.  The law only applies to government workers.  I get it.  The Governor can’t infringe on private property rights.  But I have a dream.  I have a dream that one day we won’t be judged by the presence of weapons on our person, but by the God-given right to bear arms in self defense.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

David Codrea:

That’s inexcusable, but certainly revealing of the mindset ruling those locales. It figures Opposite Day “progressives” who exploit the term “inclusive” would put up barriers against the most vulnerable of their constituents.  Gun-grabbers would evidently rather see a disabled person physically abused and even beaten to death than “allowed” to possess an effective means of self-defense.

God tests men in various and sundry ways.  Our commitment to the elderly is one such test, and I’ve upbraided little turd Hamilton Nolan before over his mockery of the elderly and the right to self defense.  The disabled and infirmed are one other such test.  It’s not over for these states.  Those responsible will answer to God one day.

Matthew Vanderboegh gives us a primer on defensive operations in urban areas.

Drunk man discharges rifle to see if it will work.  That’s not a good enough reason, not when you’re drunk.

They’re crossing forty at a time.

Pediatrician Asks, Why Can’t I Talk To You About Guns In The Home?

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 3 days ago

WBUR:

Here’s a conversation I was in on recently between a pediatric intern and the parents of a healthy, 1-day-old baby. It occurred in the Yale-New Haven Hospital well baby nursery.

“Your daughter’s physical exam is perfect,” the intern said. “She’s eating well, peeing and pooping well. I want to talk to you a little about how to help you keep her safe and healthy.”

Next came a standard discussion about the baby’s sleeping position and whether she’s got a car seat. Then, the next question:

“Do you have any guns in the home?”

Suddenly, the genial tone changed.

“I don’t think you should ask that question,” said the child’s father.

“Should I take that as a ‘yes’?” the intern pressed.

“I just don’t think you should ask.”

“Sir, we ask because we want to make sure that your baby is as safe as she can be, making sure you keep any guns locked up and away from her.”

“It’s none of your business.”

What started out as a lovely interaction between two new parents and the pediatric intern, with me observing, suddenly turned into the reprimands of an angry father. No matter how the pediatric resident and I tried to explain that we were asking for the safety of his newborn daughter, he persisted in telling us it was none of our business and not relevant for the child’s health. The mother sat silent in her hospital bed.

This really shouldn’t be controversial.

Since 1992, the American Academy of Pediatrics has encouraged primary care providers to discuss firearm safety with families. This reflects the influential group’s acknowledgment that keeping a gun locked and unloaded dramatically reduces the risk of firearms accidents, and the belief that brief counseling by physicians promotes safer storage of guns in homes with children.

Still, sadly, some controversy remains.

[ … ]

This means if you’re a Florida pediatrician, no asking about guns in the home or documenting them in the chart of a baby or young child …

This commentary was written by Marjorie S. Rosenthal, assistant director of the Yale Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program and associate research scientist in the Department of Pediatrics at the Yale University School of Medicine.

You see Marjorie, the fallen nature of mankind is wicked.  That means that totalitarians of all stripes want to exercise control over others.  The desire to exercise control over other people is often sinful.  Every genocide in modern history was preceded by gun confiscations.  As you know, the government has exceptions to medical privacy laws, and with the stroke of a pen (followed on by thousands of pages of federal register notice that explains how the executive intends to carry out his nefarious plans), those laws can be expanded.  The last little bit … “or documenting them in the chart of a baby or young child,” is a big part of the problem.

We know that you would willingly turn in records of gun owners to the government, enabling confiscatory measures and schemes.  Furthermore, we really don’t want your counsel on how we handle our guns.   We would prefer that you spend your time and focus on medicine.  For instance, the human error rate in medicine is still much higher than the commercial nuclear power industry, commercial airlines and pharmaceutical industries (all of which practice and focus on human error reduction tools and techniques).  We would prefer that you study disease, diagnosis, pathologies, biology and pharmacology as opposed to trying to understand the mechanics of machinery or fix the error rate for anyone else.  Tend to your own house and get it in order.  It’s a mess.

So to summarize, the gentleman you cited in the initial example was kind to you, kinder that I will be.  As for whether this has to be controversial, you’re right.  It certainly doesn’t have to be.  Mind your own damn business.  Now I have a few questions for you, beginning with this one.  What is your favorite position for sex?

Cracker Barrel Firearms Policy

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 6 days ago

News from Georgia:

DALTON, GA (WRCB) – A Dalton man says he was asked to leave a Cracker Barrel restaurant when managers spotted him carrying a handgun. He says there was no sign posted stating guns are not allowed on the property. Now he wants answers about why he was asked to leave.Shane Franks says he went to the Cracker Barrel in Dalton to purchase Mother’s Day cards. He says two managers escorted him out because he was carrying a gun, a gun he believes he had every right to take with him into the building.

This revolver is what triggered managers at the Dalton Cracker Barrel to escort Shane Franks out of the building Monday. Franks says he was legally carrying the gun on his hip when management asked him to leave. “If the business does not want you to carry a firearm, they are asked to make that known,” said Franks.

Franks said there was no sign posted telling him he couldn’t take the gun in until after he returned without the weapon. “When I came back there was a paper sign and place it on there and it said unless you are law enforcement you are not supposed to have a fire arm.”

Georgia’s Safe Carry Protection Act says it’s legal for licensed gun owners to carry in schools, churches, bars, and even some government buildings. Private businesses have the right to decide if they want guns on their property. “That’s confusing for a law abiding citizen. Thinks he’s obeying the law and walks in, gets cornered in front of everyone for doing what he thinks he is allowed to do.”

When Channel 3 visited Cracker Barrel Friday the makeshift sign was no longer in the window. A manager referred us to a corporate spokesperson, who denied our request for a statement, but a customer service representative tells Channel 3 if a gun is seen on any Cracker Barrel property the owner will be asked to return to their vehicle.  Franks says he got a similar response. “It’s our policy no one carries on the premise. I said, you don’t have any signs. He says, well that’s our decision also, we don’t put up signs.”

Sign or no sign,  Shane Franks said there is no hard feelings towards the restaurant he’s just looking for answers so he doesn’t have to run into this problem again. “By law, you got to have a sign so that way I know that.”

Georgia law allows a licensed holder to carry a gun. It also allows private property owners, like Cracker Barrel to ban guns from their property. The law is not clear on how and where a sign must be posted to notify customers when a gun is not welcome.

So this report is confusing, and I doubt that anything about the store manager’s reaction was well thought out or deliberate.  It needed to be.  First of all, open carry isn’t the same thing as concealed carry, and the patron was openly carrying.  When he returned without his weapon, the sign in the door referred to firearms not being welcome, as opposed to open carry.

Second, if you do a search of the Cracker Barrel web site, you’ll find nothing there that even hints of a formal corporate policy concerning firearms.  They also don’t seem to me to make it easy to contact them.  Third, if you do a Google search of Cracker Barrel firearms policy, you’ll get everything from all firearms being banned to only open carry being banned.  And of course as I said, there is no formal published policy, and there are never any postings from what I can recall from being in that store.

So here is the deal, Cracker Barrel.  Man up.  Make your decision regarding carry of weapons, concealed and/or open, publish the policy decision on your web site, and post your stores in a manner consistent with your policy.  Don’t play games with patrons – that’s rude and ill mannered.  Tell us what you want, and we can then make our decisions according to our own beliefs in light of your corporate policy.

Is that such a difficult thing to do?

Guns On Campus

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 6 days ago

The Trace:

Governor Nathan Deal rejected a bill on Tuesday that would have allowed eligible students in Georgia to carry concealed weapons at public universities. In a lengthy veto statement, Deal said he found “enlightening evidence” for his position in the views of pair of Founding Fathers who, nearly two centuries ago, opened a college where guns would not be allowed.

In October of 1824, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison attended a board meeting of the University of Virginia, which would open the following spring. Jefferson and Madison had spent not a little time thinking about individual liberties. But minutes from the meeting show that their new school would not extend the right to bear arms to its red-brick grounds.

“No student shall, within the precincts of the University, introduce, keep or use any spirituous or vinous liquors, keep or use weapons or arms of any kind …” the board declared. In his veto statement, Deal zeroed in on that passage …

Yea, well those same rules stipulated studies in Latin, Greek, Mathematics, Philosophy, forbade visits to taverns, the consumption of “spirits” or wine of any sort, insubordination and contumacy, and a host of other things commonly practiced on the campuses of America.

So let’s see an end to physical education majors for those football players in favor of training in Latin, Greek and Math, and a prohibition of alcohol, shall we?  I’m waiting?  No, in fact, none of these rules will ever obtain, and I don’t think that anyone who cares about property rights wants to force carry of weapons onto private property (of course, for State-owned property that’s a different matter).

I think the Governor is too clever by half, and by saying just a little bit he has said too much.

What’s Going On With South Carolina Gun Laws?

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 6 days ago

Report from Columbia:

A bill making its way through the Statehouse could put more guns on the streets of South Carolina.

Rep. Wendell Gilliard said Friday he believes it’s a mistake to pass a bill that would open South Carolina borders to concealed carry permits from other states. He added, it would give almost anyone the ability to walk into South Carolina with a gun.

“Everybody wants the right to carry a gun and that’s dangerous in a free society,” Gilliard said. “We should not allow that.”

Part of this bill also amends current legislation; It no longer requires South Carolinians to get a concealed carry permit to carry in public.

What?  I think I’ve got the issue of reciprocity.  South Carolina has always had an issue with that, but this bill seems to go farther.  Is this bill headed towards constitutional carry?

Can someone who is familiar with the awful machinations of South Carolina politics tell us what is going on?  And why doesn’t this bill include open carry?  My God!  How long is South Carolina going to be the national outlier on this issue?

A Few American Rifleman Articles

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 6 days ago

Is Walnut The New Black?  American Rifleman does the M1 Carbine.  I would never trade or sell my Auto-Ordnance M1 Carbine.  I love mine, and if you don’t have one, you should seriously consider buying one.

The .270 Winchester Cartridge.  What a great article!  This is a comprehensive look at the .270, where it came from, who made it, why it was made, and how it performs.  I’m biased since I own a Tikka .270 bolt action rifle.

Open Carry In Philadelphia

BY Herschel Smith
3 weeks, 3 days ago

NBC10.com:

If you see an armed jogger in Mount Airy, Pennsylvania, these days, it’s not a “run-by” in progress.

He’s trying to make a point.

James Moody, 49, who lives in the neighborhood and comes from a self-described “firearms family,” said he began jogging with a handgun at his hip a couple months ago.

He admits a jogger with a gun in plain view on Vernon Road may be a bit “eye-opening,” but Moody, a truck driver and city native who became Pennsylvania’s Golden Gloves superheavyweight boxing champion in 1988, said he’s doing it to raise awareness about gun rights.

One police officer walking the beat in the 14th District thought it jarring enough to stop Moody mid-run Monday — and the first 15 minutes of the encounter were caught on video shot by Moody’s Go-Pro.

In it, which Moody posted to YouTube Tuesday, the officer, who identifies himself as Officer Cave, crosses Vernon Road to ask Moody about the handgun. Cave approaches with a coffee in one hand and asks Moody if he has a license to carry. Moody refuses to answer the officer’s questions about a firearms license.

As other officers arrive, they too ask Moody about a license to carry or another form of identification. Cave, a sergeant and two other officers all in turn ask Moody as the group discusses the legality of carrying a firearm in public.

None of the officers nor Moody become angry, but at least one of the officers points to her phone and tells Moody he is not allowed to carry a firearm openly.

In Pennsylvania, Moody argued in the video and then in a subsequent phone interview Tuesday, gun owners with a license to carry firearms are free to “open carry” anywhere in the state — even Philadelphia.

“Clearly, the officers don’t know the laws that Philadelphia is governed by. They had no clue about what is lawful and unlawful,” said Moody. “You can, under Title 18 Section 6108, open carry a firearm.”

“We also don’t live in a stop-and-identify state. Do they stop everyone in a motor vehicle just because they’re driving? No, you need probable cause,” he added. “You have no reason to detain me and question me. It may be a little eye opening, but it is not unlawful.”

Moody’s video of the encounter ends after about 15 minutes because his Go-Pro battery died, but he said police continued to question him about the gun and why he wouldn’t show any identification. He said they handcuffed him briefly, searched him and found his license to carry inside his wallet. He was then let go.

An attorney who has wrangled with the city of Philadelphia for decades over citizens’ gun rights, Jon Mirowitz, said the law doesn’t prohibit Moody from openly carrying his gun.

But, Mirowitz said, everyone, whether you’re a cop or a civilian, should adhere to a simple rule: Act civil.

“In this sort of a confrontation, there is nobody that’s right or nobody that’s wrong,” Mirowitz said. “Being civil is the key. All the guy has to do is say, ‘Here’s my ID.’ All the cop has to do is say, ‘I’m not giving you a hard time. I just want to see some ID.'”

There’s video at the link.  So here’s a few takeaways from this.  First of all, the cops need to learn the law and obey it.  Because they want to do or see something isn’t a good enough excuse.  Kudos to Mr. Moody who knows the law, including whether they are a “stop and identify” state.

Second, I’m okay with simply trying to prove a point.  When I open carry, it’s usually because I cannot stand to conceal (e.g., it’s a hot day and I don’t want to sweat my weapon).  But in this case proving a point is the right thing to do.  The cops need to be called to account.

Third, the lawyer is a putz.  He’s basically saying, “It doesn’t matter what the law says, do what the cops want anyway and everything will be just fine.”  He is a horrible lawyer, and he is no lover of liberty.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
3 weeks, 3 days ago

Mike Vanderboegh:

For those who expected deliverance from national politics that glimmer of light is now extinguished. The GOP will now go the way of the Whigs, clearing the way for the enemies of the Republic both within and without the party. What will be left will merely be different speeds and paths to the next civil war. All meaningful politics are now local, and will depend in the end on the muzzles of our rifles and the wisdom and training of those who point them.

It’s nice to see Mike writing.  And yes, this is the next installment, perhaps a touchstone on the wrong road.

Uh oh.  Matt Vanderboegh is starting a caliber war.  I always got pounded when I did that.

Here’s Matt on kit when crossing the line.  Always been a problem, always will be.  And it’s one reason that women aren’t suited for infantry.

David Codrea:

Such confident Democrat affinity for immigration, both legal and illegal, becomes obvious when you look at the numbers, as Pew research did in a 2012 “Political Party Affiliation among Hispanics” poll. Whether you look at all, at registered voters, at native born, foreign born, unauthorized, legal permanent residents or foreign-born US citizens, that affiliation is overwhelmingly Democrat.

It comes from their culture.

Update on Mike Vanderboegh.  Continue to pray for him.

Christ or a Glock.  Well, it’s not an either-or.  It’s both-and.  Except that I don’t do Glocks.  I would rather have a Springfield Armory, just about any model.

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