As many of you know, I live in The People’s Republic of Massachusetts and, each morning, read The Boston Globe (aka The Democratic Party Newsletter). So you will understand my lack of surprise at the recent columns calling for yet more gun control after a psychopath shot up a theater in Colorado. One columnist, Derrick Z. Jackson titled his column, yesterday, “Start the conversation on guns.” Follow the link to read the whole column, but here are two excerpts:
After the 2011 Tucson massacre that left six people dead and 13 wounded, including Representative Gabrielle Giffords, President Obama called for a “common sense” discussion “to prevent future bloodshed.” Can we have that discussion now, in the wake of the Aurora, Colo., massacre at a movie theater that has taken 12 more lives and left 58 more people wounded?
Conventional wisdom in most of the news coverage and reaction from politicians would indicate not. But the national conversation needs to start, and it needs to be led by the presidential candidates. This may be difficult because Obama now allows guns in national parks, and presidential challenger Mitt Romney has fled from his Massachusetts record on gun control. But once upon a time, they could have been political allies on this issue.
Obama and Romney should do their duty to spark a discussion. So, too, should Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown and challenger Elizabeth Warren. Warren has been silent about guns in the wake of Aurora, though on paper she supports a federal assault weapons ban. Brown says he remains in favor of Massachusetts’ assault weapon ban but does not support a reinstatement of the federal ban.
A national discussion could start with assault weapons and limits on ammunition purchases. The alleged shooter at the new Batman movie in Aurora purchased 6,000 rounds of ammunition on the Internet. This week, a man was arrested in Maine with several guns in his car, including an AK-47, and police later found more weapons and 8,000 to 10,000 rounds of ammo. He said he had taken a loaded gun into a Batman movie.
It’s not difficult to see Jackson wants the conversation to be about more restrictive gun legislation disarming more Americans. I’d like to see the conversation go in a different direction. Here’s what I have to say to Mr. Jackson.
Yes, Derrick! By all means. Let’s start the conversation.
Let’s talk about making guns as easy for law-abiding citizens to obtain as they are for criminals and psychopaths to buy on the black market.
Let’s talk about ensuring that all able-bodied men and women across America are able to purchase and carry-concealed handguns so the next time a James Holmes starts shooting, lots of people are armed and ready to stop him before he kills twelve and wounds scores more.
Let’s talk about teaching our children from a young age how to handle and respect firearms and how to shoot accurately.
Let’s talk about reviving the concept of a citizen militia that is armed with weapons equal to or greater than those issued to the conventional military.
Let’s talk about making life so damn dangerous for criminals to try to assault someone or break into homes they’ll be lining up for honest work.
Yes, Derrick, let’s start the conversation, but let’s not waste our time talking about what has not worked for generations and will never work, even if you and your ilk manage to ban all firearms. What folks like you seem to be immune to understanding is that criminals and psychopaths do not care about laws. That’s what makes them criminals and psychopaths. And they will always be able to obtain guns of all sorts as long as they exist anywhere on Earth.
Let’s talk about all of us facing reality for a change, instead of wallowing in the delusion our grand utopian ideals make even one whit of difference to anyone but ourselves.
By all means, let’s talk about things that will make a difference, that are proved to make a difference.
When you’re ready for that conversation, Derrick, let us know.
What else would you add to the conversation about guns?
71-year-old patron fires on, scares off would-be robbers
Two men who attempted to hold up an Internet cafe were shot and injured by a patron of the business Friday night, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff’s officials said they got a call at 9:54 p.m. about an armed robbery at Palms Internet Cafe, 8444 SW State Road 200.
When deputies arrived at the scene, patrons outside the business told them that two men in masks, one armed with a baseball bat and the other with a handgun, had barged into the business.The robbers told the approximately 30 patrons to get on the floor, and they demanded money.
Officials said one of the patrons, Samuel Williams, drew his own handgun and shot at the robbers, according to sheriff’s officials. Both robbers began running toward the front door, and the patron fired several more shots as they fled. The two men got into a car parked nearby and fled.
[Text reposted from YouTube]
Way to go Samuel Williams.
Lowlifes count on victims being unarmed. See how quickly they flee when confronted by armed resistance.
If this had taken place in Massachusetts, odds are nobody would have been armed except the robber and everyone would have lost everything they carried. Worse, if someone was armed and shot at the bad guys, he probably would end up in jail for armed assault and if he hit one with a bullet, the thief might well sue him.
Despite what mealy-mouthed politicians and Attorney Generals might tell you, the police cannot protect you. They know this in Florida. Why can’t they figure this out here in The People’s Republic and in Washington, D.C.?
Truth? Facts? Innocence? What do they have to do with anything? Apparently nothing when there is political hay to be made, as in the case of George Zimmerman.
In case you were in a coma and missed it, Zimmerman is the guy who shot and killed Trayvon Martin a few months ago. Despite all reported evidence indicating Zimmerman told the truth about the incident, including that Martin attacked him as he was walking away and had him on the ground where he feared for his life, Zimmerman was arrested, forced to post bail even though he was not a flight risk, and has been systematically vilified by much of the media and the likes of race-pimps Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson.
Now it appears there is even more evidence indicating Zimmerman’s innocence — a lie detector test Zimmerman passed and prosecutors had before they decided to bring charges.
George Zimmerman Passed Police Lie Detector Test Day After Trayvon Martin Killing
Trayvon Martin – George Zimmerman
A day after killing Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman passed a police lie detector test when asked if he confronted the teenager and whether he feared for his life “when you shot the guy,” according to documents released today by Florida prosecutors.
According to a “confidential report” prepared by the Sanford Police Department, Zimmerman, 28, willingly submitted to a computer voice stress analyzer (CVSA) “truth verification” on February 27. Investigators concluded that he “has told substantially the complete truth in regards to this examination.”
Zimmerman, the report noted, “was classified as No Deception Indicated (NDI).”
Why is this purely political prosecution of Zimmerman going forward despite all the evidence he’s told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth from the moment the police arrived on the scene?
Because Zimmerman is half-white and half-Latino while Martin was black.
From the very first moment, this case has not been about a crime, but about race, about the opportunity to brand a “white” guy as racist.
Here’s something odd — if being half-white is enough for Zimmerman to be considered white, how is that half-white Barack Obama is considered black?
Would Zimmerman be facing trial if he was black and Martin was white, or half white? Or if Zimmerman was only a quarter white, or an eighth?
Based on what I’ve read about the case, I believe Zimmerman confronted Martin that day because Martin was a black kid in a place where Zimmerman did not think he should be. But I also believe Martin attacked Zimmerman and was shot as a result. Perhaps there exists evidence to the contrary to which I’m not privy. But so far, not one shred has emerged.
I say it’s high time the political harassment of Zimmerman ended, this whole case was closed, and we move on to something more important, like getting that white guy out of the White House.
You may be familiar with the case of former Marine, now Indiana jeweler, Ryan Jerome who was arrested in New York when he asked an Empire State Building security officer where he should check his gun, for which he has a valid Indiana carry permit. The building has a posted sign prohibiting firearms. For doing the right thing, he was arrested and faced a minimum of three and a half years, and up to fifteen years, in prison.
Outrage ensued at this latest travesty of justice by a state that is quickly becoming world-renowned for its absurd, anti-Second Amendment laws that turn law-abiding citizens of other states into criminals. And now, a New York City councilman is demanding that the District Attorney dismiss the charges against Ryan.
NYC councilman demands that Manhattan DA drop gun charges against Marine
New York City Councilman Daniel Halloran wants the criminal case against Ryan Jerome, a former Marine facing 15 years in prison for unknowingly violating the state’s tough gun laws, to be dismissed.
Halloran, a Republican, told The Daily Caller that he has been in touch with Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance’s office, but he isn’t optimistic that the DA will let the case go.
Jerome visited New York City in September with $15,000 worth of jewelry he intended to sell. He brought a gun, for which he has a valid Indiana concealed carry permit, after reading online gun law information which he believed indicated it was legal to do so.
Upon asking security officers if he should check his weapon at the Empire State Building, Jerome was arrested. He now faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 3.5 years in prison and a maximum of 15 years behind bars. A grand jury has not yet indicted him.
Halloran said that the case is “another unfortunate New York District Attorney fiasco.”
In November, the US House of Representatives passed the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011 which, if passed by the senate and signed by Our (anti-gun) Dear Leader, would put an end to the criminalization of innocent, law-abiding citizens simply for doing elsewhere in America what is legal, and their right to do at home.
How many more law-abiding gun owners must be fined or imprisoned or forced to endure trials or accept criminalizing plea bargains to avoid the possibility of prison before the Senate wakes up and passes the legislation. Congress always seems to have time to pass all kinds of freedom-reducing laws. Maybe it’s time, for a change, to pass one that protects freedom and common sense.
I don’t believe any permit at all should be necessary to own or carry any firearm, but if we must have permit laws, they should be “shall issue” unless there is a serious and compelling reason not to.
What do you folks think?
Should states and cities be able to deny citizens their natural rights?
And what should be done about Ryan Jerome and others who’ve been ensnared by New York law?
Oklahoma Woman Shoots, Kills Intruder: 911 Operators Say It’s OK to Shoot
A young Oklahoma mother shot and killed an intruder to protect her 3-month-old baby on New Year’s Eve, less than a week after the baby’s father died of cancer.
Sarah McKinley with the baby she protected by killing a knife-wielding intruder.
Sarah McKinley says that a week earlier a man named Justin Martin dropped by on the day of her husband’s funeral, claiming that he was a neighbor who wanted to say hello. The 18-year-old Oklahoma City area woman did not let him into her home that day.
On New Year’s Eve Martin returned with another man, Dustin Stewart, and this time was armed with a 12-inch hunting knife. The two soon began trying to break into McKinley’s home.
As one of the men was going from door to door outside her home trying to gain entry, McKinley called 911 and grabbed her 12-gauge shotgun.
McKinley told ABC News Oklahoma City affiliate KOCO that she quickly got her 12 gauge, went into her bedroom and got a pistol, put the bottle in the baby’s mouth and called 911.
“I’ve got two guns in my hand — is it okay to shoot him if he comes in this door?” the young mother asked the 911 dispatcher. “I’m here by myself with my infant baby, can I please get a dispatcher out here immediately?”
Had this incident taken place here in the The People’s Republic, it’s almost certain the outcome would be vastly different. Sarah would likely be either dead, along with her baby, or she would be in jail for having the temerity to defend herself, her child, and her home. You see, here in Massachusetts, as Attorney General Martha Coakley said on a local radio station, “…we really try and discourage people from self help.”
Local prosecutors appear to be on-board with the insane idea of not defending yourself and your property, as are local cops. Anthony McKay discovered this when he was arrested for breaking the jaw of a knife-wielding druggie who was trying to break into his car in his own driveway. “We don’t urge anybody to (fight back),” Swampscott Police Sgt. Detective Tim Cassidy said. “We want them to call us.” McKay is currently charged with a felony for fighting back.
Sarah and her 12-gauge.
It’s ironic that the state where the American Revolution began should now be the state that most rejects the very values the revolutionaries fought and died for.
When the gun-grabbers whine about saving the children, what they are really demanding is a place where everyone can be easily victimized, a place where Sarah McKinley and her baby would likely be the dead today instead of the scumbag who broke into their home wielding a twelve-inch knife.
Any honest cop will tell you it is impossible for them to protect you. Nevertheless, Detective Cassidy wants folks to call them when something is going down. Sarah McKinley did call the cops and did ask for immediate assistance which did not arrive until after her assailant would likely have killed her, had she been unarmed.
A firearm is a vital tool to have in the home and on your person when you are out in the world. It is the great equalizer. It’s the reason Sarah McKinley and her baby are alive and healthy today.
The next time some you hear some milksop blathering about how wonderful the world would be without firearms, remind him or her about Sarah McKinley, a young woman I’d be happy to nominate as “Mother of the Year.”
What are your thoughts on this story?
Will you second my nomination?
Or do you think Sarah should have waited for the cops to arrive?
If you own firearms, what would you have done in her situation.
And if you don’t own firearms, what would you have done?
Congratulations to this week’s Comment Contest winner – Beth.
What is it about firearms that causes otherwise rational people to lose all common sense? That’s the question I asked myself this morning when I read the following article.
Court considers Georgia ban on guns in churches
ATLANTA — There’s a legal battle brewing in Georgia over whether licensed gun owners should be allowed to carry firearms to churches, synagogues, mosques and other places of worship after state lawmakers banned them from doing so last year.
The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta heard arguments Thursday on a lawsuit brought by the central Georgia church and gun rights group GeorgiaCarry.org claiming that the law violates their constitutionally protected religious freedoms. State lawyers said it was a small price to pay to allow other worshippers [sic] to pray without fearing for the safety. The panel of judges roundly criticized the suit after hearing oral arguments but didn’t immediately make a ruling.
Georgia is one of a handful of states with the restrictions — court papers say Arkansas, Mississippi and North Dakota have also adopted similar laws — and court observers, religious leaders and Second Amendment groups are closely watching the outcome of this case.
If Thursday’s arguments are any indication, the challengers are facing a tough fight. All three judges on the panel raised technical legal concerns about the lawsuit targeting the 2010 law that banned people from carrying weapons into houses of worship.
First of all, why in the world are those challenging the law claiming some religious right to carry a firearm in church? No such right exists nor is one needed. We each have a natural or God-given right to protect ourselves by any means necessary and that includes carrying firearms. It’s a right the Founders thought so important they enshrined it in the Second Amendment and the right does not end when we step through the doors of a church or anywhere else.
State lawyers claim the statewide restriction is designed to allow folks to worship “without fearing for their safety.” Do these lawyers imagine some wacko with a grudge and a gun and a thirst for blood is going to care that bringing his firearm into a church is illegal? Do they really think the perp will worry about being charged with bringing a gun into a church after committing multiple murders? Exactly how stupid are these lawyers? The fact is that ONLY if there are worshipers with firearms does the congregation stand any chance of stopping the lunatic before he or she runs out of ammunition.
If a congregation wants to leave themselves unprotected and votes to ban firearms in their church, that is their right. Those who disagree are free to leave that church and find another. Frankly, I would pray much more comfortably knowing many fellow worshipers have my back, so to speak.
It’s clear the Court of Appeals is not inclined to lift the ban. They will, no doubt, find some way to dance around the issue. But the fact is that the law is unconstitutional on it’s face. It is a clear violation of the right of Georgia citizens to protect themselves. I can only hope that at some point before the next maniac decides to shoot up a church or synagog that enough folks come to their senses in Georgia and other other states and repeal these crazy laws.
And if they won’t do it for themselves, they should do it for the children, because if it saves just one young life, it’s worth it.
It was a recent article from the world of chemistry that got me thinking about truth, knowledge, and dogma; a story about a scientist who claimed to have discovered something that the rest of the scientific world knew with absolute certainty could not be true since it violated the very laws of nature as they, and all the text books, understood them. The scientist, Dan Shechtman, was laughed at, ridiculed, even thrown out of his research group.
Dan Shechtman was mocked, insulted, and shunned for questioning what other scientists "knew" to be true.
But he was right. It took years to prove it to the the satisfaction of the rest of the scientific world, but he did, and in December, will receive a Nobel Prize for his discovery.
The way I see it, though, is that he’s receiving the award not so much for his discovery, but for his willingness to put aside what he’d been taught, what he and everyone else “knew” to be “settled” fact, and accept the possibility that those facts might be wrong. And in doing so, he “eventually forced scientists to reconsider their conception of the very nature of matter.”
How often are we presented with something that goes against the very fabric of what we believe. It could be an idea or way of doing something…it could be anything. Certainly, in the realm of politics and the social-pseudosciences, we constantly face ideas and proposals that are incomprehensible when viewed through the filter of our entrenched ethos so we dismiss them out of hand as the maundering of the unenlightened, or worse.
As it turned out, a number of other scientists had previously encountered puzzling test results that, had they pursued them with an open mind, would have led them to the discovery and, ultimately, a Nobel Prize. But they didn’t because they were unable to even consider that scientific dogma might be wrong.
Imagine if, when presented with a new idea, instead of falling back on our customary knee-jerk dismissal, we all paused and considered the possibility that we might be wrong and the other guy correct?
Shouldn’t we at least ask for evidence and give it fair consideration?
We may not, like Dan Shechtman, change the way the world looks at matter or energy. But isn’t it possible we might change ourselves, or some small part of our lives, and the lives of others, for the better?
Politician’s and others routinely lament the prevalence of crime and of violence in our cities. In some places, it seems that every crime is accompanied by calls for more laws, more restrictions on firearms, more programs for whatever disadvantaged group were involved, more police on the street, and more hand-wringing and wondering why we all just can’t get along.
The folks in Garcia, Mexico, a town on the Texas border, know better than most about violent crime. But in Garcia, Mayor Jaime Rodriguez Calderon has decided to take a different approach.
Mexican city plans to train citizens to fire guns
Violence in Nuevo Leon has been rampant, including a grenade attack at a casino in the capital of Monterrey in August.
Officials in a northern Mexican city plagued by violence say a new course will take a fresh approach toward protecting citizens: Training people to handle and shoot guns.
The aim of the approach, says Garcia Mayor Jaime Rodriguez Calderon, is putting a stop to crime in the 40,000-person city in Nuevo Leon state.
“Many people call me because their son or their husband has been kidnapped, or some family member’s car has been stolen. I said to myself, ‘Wow, how can we, the citizens, defend ourselves,’ ” Rodriguez told CNNMexico.com.
Twice this year, gunmen have tried to assassinate Rodriguez, who has earned the nickname of Bronco for his strong personality.
The training for people with weapons permits in Garcia is part of a phase of Rodriguez’s security program aimed at “involving the citizens in defense of the region.”
“Many of them want the training and knowledge … to defend their families and their heritage,” he said.
For many years, I’ve horrified relatives and friends here in The People’s Republic by suggesting that the best way to reduce crime would be to issue handguns to every citizen who wants one and then train them, and train them well, in how and when to use them and, more importantly, when not to use them.
I applaud Mayor Calderon. It’s about time some government official somewhere understood that a well-armed and well-trained citizenry is the single best defense against rampant crime.
Still on vacation, but I saw this and had to post.
Here in The People’s Republic of Massachusetts, it can be difficult to get official permission, ie. a carry permit, to protect yourself in public. In Norway, it is apparently all but impossible there for the average citizen.
A woman walks through debris in a street following today's explosion in Oslo, Norway.
5:47pm: Anti-terrorism police are being sent to Utoya where the Labour party youth camp has come under fire, the BBC is reporting. NRK says five people have been injured.
Andrew Boyle, a journalist in Norway, has sent me the following:
“There are 700 people on the island camp. At 5.20 pm ambulance personel were told not to proceed out to the island because there was still shooting there. One Labour youth member tweeted: “We are sitting down by the beach. A man is shotting clothed in a police uniform. Help us! When are the police coming to help us!”
Police stormtroopers are about to land on Utoya island from helicopters. Shooting still going on. Eyewitness describes shooting from his position on the mainland: “There is a little war going on out there”
5:31pm: Neil Perry has sent me more details of the shooting on the Labour party youth camp, which suggests the possibility of co-ordinated attacks. It is a Google translation from Dagbladet, tidied up a bit, so it is not perfect.
“[E]yewitnesses told the AP that a man dressed as a police officer has fired several shots at Utøya in Buskerud. AP spoke with one of those who were on Utoya where there is an AUF event with over 700 people.
“Suddenly, we heard lots of shooting. People had to run and hide. We have been told to get off the island.”
“We now have reports of a serious situation there – a critical situation on Utøya,” Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg told TV 2
The police are now on site and sealed off the area. Bjorn Jarle Røberg-Larsen of Labor, is not in Utoya, but has had telephone contact with young people who are on the island.
“They say that at least one person wearing a police-like uniform was firing shots with a handgun,” he said.
He says that the young people he talked to were hiding and dared not speak on the phone anymore for fear of being discovered by the perpetrator.
“Young people have to swim in panic, and it is far to the mainland from Utoya. Others are hiding. Those I spoke with did not want to talk more. They were terrified,” he said to VG Nett.
A bomb is detonated and then a local policeman or, more probably, someone impersonating a policeman, opens fire on young folks at a political youth camp. Terrified kids are hiding and trying to swim off the island to safety.
Does anyone have any thoughts on how differently that might have played out if it had happened in Texas or some other place where adults are not prohibited from carrying and defending themselves, and others, with firearms?
Comment Contest Winners # = Repeat winner
For the week ending
1/29 Leonard Barnes2 2/5 Pat
2/12 Brogan1 2/19 Stephanie
2/26 Scott Schluter
3/5 Storm4 3/12 Donna C.
3/26 Becky Holm
4/30 Brogan1 5/7 Blue_Sky
5/14 Drill Sgt K.
6/25 Woody3 7/2 Christie
7/9 Candace Delaney
7/16 No responses!
7/23 Rob Andrews
7/30 George Deas
8/6 Vinny V
9/17 Leonard Barnes2 9/24 Kathy
11/5 Kentucky Kid
11/26 Woody3 12/3 Leanne
12/10 Gina Jackson
12/31 charles scamman
1/7/12 Gloria Meyer
1/14 Liz Gavaza
2/4 Phillip Dukes
2/11 Storm4 2/18 Leslie
3/3 Debby Rich
3/17 Carolyn McBride
3/24 Keith Hodges
3/31 Jeffrey C. Anthony
4/7 Sue Reynolds
4/14 No responses!
5/5 No responses!
5/19 Estes Mills
6/16 Chip Johnson
6/30 Elizabeth Martin
7/21 K Howe
8/4 Will you be this week's winner?