Thursday, December 29, 2011

Climate Change Computer Models - Best Paragraph Ever

Forbes has this article on climate change today.  In it, Louis Woodhill writes:
But don’t the climate scientists’ computer models prove that carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels are causing climate change? No. First, no computer model can ever prove anything (see the definition of “science” given above). Second, we do not have the capability to model a system as complex as the earth.
It has been said repeatedly, and I agree, that one huge problem that the pro-global warming people have is the tendency to use computer model results as if they are data.  They are NOT! Something resulting from a computer model does not dictate that that same thing will be observed in nature.  And guess what?  Predicted rises in global temperature have not occurred in the last 10 years.


Will Rove Help Make Predictions Come True?

Karl Rove makes some political predictions in this Wall Street Journal article.  One prediction in particular stood out:
Scandals surrounding the now-bankrupt Solyndra, Fannie and Freddie, MF Global and administration insider deals still to emerge will metastasize, demolishing the president's image as a political outsider. By the election, the impression will harden that Mr. Obama is a modern Chicago-style patronage politician, using taxpayer dollars to reward political allies (like unions) and contributors (like Obama fund-raiser and Solyndra investor George Kaiser).
An evil thought occurred to me: is it possible that Rove already has information about additional scandals involving "Chicago-style patronage" that he has held back, waiting to use it to derail the Obama re-election campaign? 

Maybe, just maybe.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

CBS News Article About Women and Guns

Article is here.

I commented on the article and reproduce it below:

----- Comment Start -----

"Most states require training and safety courses before using firearms, and there are programs popping up throughout the country teaching women to do just that."

This is untrue. Most states do not require any training or license to purchase and use a handgun or any firearm. In fact New York City and New York State is only one of a small number of states that require a license to own handguns: the vast majority of states have no such requirement.

Most states to require a license and training to carry a concealed weapon, but that is entirely a different matter than owning and using a gun at a gun range.
This problem stems from most writers at the television networks being based in New York City naturally assuming that New York City laws are typical, when in reality they are atypically strict when compared to almost everywhere else in the United States.

---- Comment End ----

This alludes to another thing I hear all the time, even in California: the phrase "licensed gun owner".  I hear it in conversations, and I read it in articles like this one.  To most non-gun owners it seems to be held as a truth that one must be licensed to own a gun.  

I blame television shows for this.  How many times have we seen characters in procedural police dramas say lines like: "We recovered an unlicensed gun at the crime scene."  Many TV writers are ignorant of gun laws in general, and many are based in New York City where one must obtain a license to possess a handgun in ones home, so they assume that such laws apply everywhere.  There we hear TV show characters talk of licensed firearms and licensed gun owners in shows set in places like Las Vegas, Los Angeles, or Atlanta even though those places do not require a license to possess a handgun.

This leads new gun owners to be ignorant about the law, assuming that one must get a license to own a gun.  I have actually had people ask me how to get a handgun license in California, and I tell them that it is pretty much impossible in Santa Clara County, only to learn that they want to BUY a handgun, not carry a concealed handgun.

Even though firearms are becoming ever more popular, I really don't see this changing.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Obama to Defy Spending Prohibitions

Hat tip to David Hardy at Arms And The Law.

President Obama in a signing statement has alluded to his intention to ignore budgetary prohibitions against spending for certain research projects that seek to justify increased gun control.

But David Hardy points out that spending money in ways not authorized by Congress is unconstitutional and illegal.

I wonder, if President Obama proceeds to spend money to fund the prohibited programs, breaking the law, who would enforce the law?  the "Justice" Department?  It is to laugh!

Friday, December 23, 2011

What if California Went Shall Issue?

Ever wonder what would happen in California if the state started issuing LTC permits on a shall-issue basis? Iowa may have provided a glimpse of the future during 2011.
“The majority of people I’ve talked to said they’d just always wanted one,” said Pals, the Cerro Gordo County sheriff. “And now they can in Iowa and they are following through with it. The training that’s required is a lot easier now.”
There is undoubtedly a huge backlog of gun owners in California that would apply for a permit if the process was not discretionary.  If only 2% of Californians got a permit California would expect to increase from approximately 32,000 permits held today to somewhere around 600,000 permits.

Given the state of current court cases, there is a possibility that such a scenario may eventually come to pass in the next few years.  To help it along, donate to the Calguns Foundation.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

We Are Winning - Personal Edition

My sister has never been a gun person. She did not get a gun as a child, like I did (a Remington Fieldmaster 572 that I still have and still shoot, and will NEVER sell) and to my knowledge has never shot a gun. But she has on several occasions heard me discuss my introduction to handgun shooting and training, and my views about pro-gun rights issues. I found out earlier this year that she had been listening more closely than I thought.

My parents have moved out of California and purchased land in Oklahoma for their retirement. After this, my sister and I began semi-annual pilgrimages to visit, often together to save on expenses. During one visit my Dad mentioned a few handguns he had inherited from his half brother. Would I be interested in taking a look? Sure! So he brought out a box and there were a couple of .22 revolvers, a Ruger P89, a Taurus .38 snubbie, and a strange and shrunken 1911 in .380 from Llama, which may be a Llama V. My sister was there and she watched as my Dad and I talked about the guns and I even showed my Mom how to load, unload, and handle the .38 revolver. It turned out that she kept that one in her night stand for protection when my Dad was away. On a subsequent visit I actually took her out back to shoot the gun at least once so she would know what to expect. I mentioned that she should get a holster for it, and she looked at me as if I was crazy.

The 90 minute drive to Tulsa gave us a lot of time to talk, and on the last trip out we had a surprising conversation about guns. My brother-in-law had inherited several handguns from his father, and was interested in shooting them, but did not really know much about guns, safe gun handing, ammunition selection, and related topics. My sister thought that if they were going to have guns in the house, and if her husband was going to shoot them, it would be a good idea to get some training. Then came the real shocker: she herself was interested in learning to shoot! My pacifistic, not quite anti-gun, liberal sister wanted to learn to shoot.

I asked her why she wanted to shoot, and she said that she wanted to feel safe with guns in the house, and she realized that if she was confronted by an intruder when she was alone at home she would need to protect herself for the period of time before the police could arrive, and a gun could be a life saver in that event.

Although I had talked before about my own gun hobby and how I started, we talked a little more about it, the group that taught the NRA Basic Pistol Class I attended, Bay Area Professionals for Firearms Safety and Education, BayProfs for short, and my subsequent shooting activities and training. To say the least, this was an interesting conversation with my sister, especially when she decided to get her husband the gift of two seats in the next BayProfs Basic Pistol class, one for each of them. She said it would be a “couple bonding” activity for both of them.

A few weeks went by, and while at work I got a call from my sister: she wanted my advice on a gun-related gift for her husband. She wanted to get him some kind case or container to carry his guns to from the range. While looking at items online, she was unsure the quality and suitability of various products and wanted more information. I suggested we go to a local gun store where we could ask about the products, and get some hands-on evaluation. After a little more discussion it turned out that the the Bay Area Gun Vault in Mountain View was most convenient for her. I also preferred this store because they recently expanded, taking over the space next to them, and because it is well lighted, tidy, and ordinary looking with a helpful staff. I did not want to take her to a more hardcore gunnie man-cave like the Gun Exchange or Sportsmans Supply. Bay Area Gun Vault is also the closest gun store to her house, so she is more likely to make it her “home base” store.

I met her there on a recent afternoon, and upon walking in and seeing all the rifles in the racks, her eyes got big and the said something like “Oh, my! This is a little scary.” I distracted her by suggesting we get some help, and went over to the counter. One of the clerks, who was armed, started showing, my sister the various gun cases they had in stock, and also suggested she look at a range bags that could be locked, explaining that any locked container would satisfy California law. All the while he was keeping up a conversation, asking about her shooting experience, asking about the BayProfs classes (approving enthusiastically about getting training) and also mentioning about other things she may need like cleaning kits and supplies, eye and ear protection, etc. My sister eventually selected a Boyt range bag, thinking that it would be more versatile, and impressed with the lifetime warranty.

This was when things got weird.

I took her over to the handgun display case and pointed out my pistol, a Kimber Custom II, which the counterman immediate took out and handed over to me. I explained to my sister about indexing the trigger finger along the frame, and a little about why I bought the gun, while she handled it, getting a feel for the weight and balance. This may have been the first time my sister ever held a handgun. But it did not stop there. Even though we were not buying a gun that day, the counterman got into a conversation with my sister and asked about what she liked about the 1911, and then suggested she try out a Glock. She did not like the finger rounds on the grip, so out came a Smith & Wesson M&P, which she liked better. I liked it too. And after that came a Sig P226, and then a couple of Smith & Wesson revolvers. After a short time my sister was getting pretty comfortable with all the guns around, and even appeared to be enjoying herself.

We left after about an hour in the store and went to Peet's to get a coffee and catch up with family stuff. My sister thought the entire experience was enlightening and interesting, and she is definitely looking forward to the class. I was amazed, and a little proud of her for going outside her comfort zone. While in Peet's I mentioned that women getting into shooting and guns seems to be part of a cultural trend. She offered two explanations: first, more woman are living alone because of divorce or other life circumstances, and second, women in the baby boom generation are older and more clear sighted about security, not as naive that younger women about the possibility of becoming a victim, and more confident in their ability to do something about it. In addition, my sister thinks that gun safety should begin with knowledge and respect of firearms, not fear and ignorance.

I really admire my sister.

We parted then as it was getting on in the evening, but not before I told her that if she wanted to visit a gun range to try out my gun before the class in February to give me a call. I would be very glad to arrange a trip.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Joan Peterson Writes the Stupidest Thing I Have Ever Read on Her Blog

In  this post on her blog Common Gunsense Joan Peterson has really outdone herself by writing the stupidest thing I have ever read on her blog, which is quite an accomplishment because there are so many candidates for the title.  Concerning a man in Hollywood, California, who was killed after he walked down a street shooting at random passing automobiles:
"That's the problem when guns are so available. An otherwise normal and law abiding person who has a bad day can take it out on innocent people too easily."
I see.  Gun owners are not to be trusted because they might "snap" and commence a murderous spree?  Amazing how this excuse keeps being thrown out by the anti-gun bigots.

Here's my prediction: further investigation will reveal that the shooter had previously unknown and severe psychological problems for which had had not been successfully treated.  Investigation will further show that the gun he used was purchased legally in California but that the background check system, 10 day waiting period, and the DOJ Hangun Roster, all failed to keep a gun out of that mans hands.

I was sorely tempted to post the above on Joans blog, but I refrained.  I have long decided that posting comments on her blog is a waste of time because she is not interested in "debating" anyone but those who already agree with her.

"I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it."  -- George Bernard Shaw


Monday, December 5, 2011

Joan Peterson Is Even More Stupid Than Usual Today

As can be seen in this post on her blog.

Other posts I have seen about the gun replica on a purse have rightly excoriated the stupidity of the TSA.  But for Joan, even a picture of a gun in public is alarming.  Please everyone, stop posting comments on her blog.  If we all ignore her, perhaps she will stop.

Friday, November 25, 2011

44,000 and Counting

The Anti-gun people must be looking at the news from Wisconsin and pulling out their hair in large clumps in frustration.  According to this story,  44,443 applications for concealed weapon permits have been received, 13,085 approved, and 12, 708 licenses issued to Wisconsin residents.

When was the last time that the Brady Campaign got even 1000 people interested in anything that they are doing?

If most of the 44,443 applications are approved, then the population of license holders is approaching 0.8% of the population.  Given the demand in other states, we can reasonably expect about 2%, or 113,000 people to hold CCW licenses in Wisconsin.

Does one need any better proof that pro-gun views are predominate in the United States?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

HR 822 - Bill Passes House 272 to 154

HR 822, a bill that would mandate nation wide reciprocity of concealed carry permits, passed the House today in a bi-partisan vote.  It now advances to the Senate, where odds of passage are much less certain.  Also note that the margin of passage today in the House is not large enough to override a veto in the event this bill gets to the Presidents desk.

There is still a long way to go, and an uncertain chance of a good outcome.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

HR 822 - Passed Committee

As reported by The Hill, and elsewhere, HR 822 successfully passed out of the House Judiciary committee and is clear to proceed to the House floor.  The sole Republican member voting against the bill was Rep. Dan Lundgren.  He voted against the bill because of states rights issues, and he had wished to amend the bill:

“I wanted to offer an amendment that the person be a resident of the state in order for the reciprocity imposed by federal law — in other words, a resident of the state that granted the permit,” Lungren said, noting that his concerns were not adequately addressed in committee.
 So, Rep. Lundgren favors a policy that would disarm people holding non-resident permits, as well as the vast majority of California citizens who are unable to obtain a license to carry given the restrictive issue policies of most sheriffs offices in this state.

Or perhaps he is just worried about a lot of "fly-over" states residents carrying in California?  Either way, Dan Lundgren is not a friend of gun rights in this state.  Perhaps the citizens of House District 3 need to remind him for whom he works.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

As Read on Common Gunsense

Blogger gregorycamp had this to say in response to this post on Common Gunsense: 
This is your website, so you have the right to do with it as you choose. That being said, I'd like to see you be honest about your actual purpose here. What you want is to make pronouncements and have your audience sing along in a chorus of agreement. So be it. Just don't expect those of us on the other side to be fooled.
Or to continue to waste our time "debating" Joan Peterson.  I have stopped commenting on her posts because I know she and I will never agree.  The differences in world views and values are too profound for total agreement.

About the only things that Joan Peterson and I agree on, after some reflection on my part, is that all firearms transfers should involve a background check, and that a better job must be done to include mental health records in background checks.  I also think that training should be required for a license to carry a concealed weapon, and that training must include a qualification course of fire. Drug or alcohol use while armed should be prohibited, just as it is when operating automobiles.

As is the case now, one is always responsible for the use of the weapon in public, so everyone who carries a weapon must know when, and when not to use it.  However, a person who uses a weapon in an act of lawful self defense should be immune from civil lawsuits.

Other then that, if you are not a prohibited person, you're good to go.  No waiting periods to pick up a gun.  No purchase limits: 1 handgun per month. No weapon-type bans: police officers and citizens get to carry the same weapons.  No registration of weapons, no ammo restrictions, no micro-stamping, no rosters of supposedly safe weapons, unless the police are subject to the very same limits.

I would also limit the definition of sensitive places, and I would not allow private property owners to prohibit weapon carry if they offer sales of services or products to the public.   If schools are deemed to be sensitive, then that should apply to the school property itself, not to zones surrounding the property.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Does President Obama Have Dog?

Because he sure isn't getting any love from liberals.

This story mentions a bit about the attitudes of the Occupy Wall Street protesters:

"When Douglas Schoen, a Democratic pollster, sent an agent to Zuccotti Park, where the protests began, to make inquiries, he got back surprising data. Just 198 occupiers were polled, so this was hardly a scientific sampling, but an experienced pollster nevertheless is careful about whom he talks to. Just 48 percent said they will vote for Mr. Obama next year. Only about 15 percent are unemployed, and they clearly aren’t the downtrodden “99 percent” they claim they are. However, “We’re the 85 percent” wouldn’t make much of a message on a T-shirt."
President Obama is in real trouble if these people are not solidly behind his re-election.

Long Gun Open Carry Event Today

The event will be held at the Bayfair Mall, in San Leandro, from 12 noon to 1 PM today.  Any and all California legal long guns are allowed.  SFGate has an article about the event here:
"The point is to be provocative enough to spur action by the courts or legislators to repeal the new law and restore the right to pack unloaded pistols in the open."
I am sure that they will be provocative, but what they provoke is likely to be a new law banning open carry of long guns.  Any new law could very well be poorly crafted and a huge burden on lawful gun owners, but it seems the open carry advocates are not going to stand down.

Oh, well.


Here is a comment I posted on the SFGate site:
"The people holding the event are not gun nuts, they are rights nuts.

Let me explain.

These people believe, as I do, that the 2nd Amendment protects the right of the individual to be armed for self defense, both in the home, and in public.  So far, the Supreme Court has validated the "in the home" part of that view, but has not yet affirmed the "in public" part.

Meanwhile, about 40 states in the United States allow law abiding citizens to carry concealed weapons in public legally, after satisfying objective criteria.  However California is not one of these states.  While California does have a concealed weapon law, licenses to carry are very rarely issued in urban counties where the need to be armed is greatest.  In Santa Clara county, only 55 licenses to carry are currently issued to civilians.

The Open Carry movement uses open carry events to protest the current state of the California laws governing law carry of arms in public - laws that almost totally prevent a citizen from carrying weapons openly or concealed, laws which therefore deny thhe exercise of 2nd Amendment rights.

The Open Carry advocates do not want to carry weapons in a way that alarms the public, but the public has not afforded the citizen any other way to carry, and the public prevents effective self-defense by tolerating restrictive laws.  Many comments to this article have mentioned that unloaded guns are useless for self defense, and have wondered why these Open Carry advocates do not conceal their weapons.  The reason is that Open Carry advocates believe in following the law, and not open carry of unloaded long guns is all that is allowed.

This event is a protest, intended to illustrate the stupidity of the current California laws concerning bearing arms in public.  One solution to this situation would be to reform California laws by adopting a shall-issue license to carry system.  Other states do it without many problems, California could as well.  Once this state was a social trend setter, but now it has fallen behind the rest of the nation.

Time for us to catch up."

Friday, October 14, 2011

New Page - Roster of Handguns Uncertified for Sale

I have created a new page for Left Coast: a roster of new handguns that are not certified for sale in California, usually because they are pistols that lack a magazine disconnect.  This page, available here, will be updated as I get time and learn about new handgun models.  Your submissions will also be welcome and added to the page.

Long Gun Open Carry Event

The Responsible Citizens of California are planning an event that will be irresponsible from a political point of view, that is an open carry event in Pacific Beach where participants will be carrying unloaded rifles and shotguns.

I predict a sequel to AB 144 in the next legislative session, restricting the open carry of long guns as well.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know it is a right, and all that, but come on!  You're not accomplishing anything constructive by holding these events, except scaring the Hell out of people, and handing our adversaries political capitol.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Calguns Publishes List of Active LTC by County

In a feat of stupendous effort, Calguns Foundation has published a report detailing the number and type of active licenses to carry by county in the state of California.  The report, in PDF format, is available for download here.  I will also add the download URL to my Get The Facts section on this blog.

Salient Statistics:

Total Active Civilian LTC: 32666
Total Possible Civilian LTC: 37465
Total Possible LTC Santa Clara Co.:92

That is correct, 92 LTC in Santa Clara Co., an issue rate of 0.068 LTC per 1000 eligible persons.

Monday, October 10, 2011

What do the OWS People Believe?

I have long thought that the best way to find out what people in a group believe is to read comments on their blogs.  I was curious about the Occupy Wall Street people, and checked out their web site.

The discussions were wide ranging, and so far as I read, thoughtful debates on issues.  One comment:
"What happened to the Green Revolution? I have been waiting for Iran to take it back up."
inspired me to reply:
"The Green Revolution got stamped out because the protesters were unarmed.  In the face of ruthless men, citizens must secure their rights with guns.  Thankfully we live in a nation of laws so that people can "peaceably assemble" to petition "for redress of grievances". The Iranian people, unfortunately do not, and so they were brutally suppressed because  they had no arms."
I can't wait to see what the reply might be.

Issa Accueses Holder of Lying About Fast & Furious

The House of Representatives investigation into Fast & Furious has perhaps moved into a new phase.  In this letter, published on the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform website, and originally published by David Codrea, Chairman Issa accuses Eric Holder of lying in his testimony before Congress.  One damning paragraph among many:
Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of this intransigence is that the Department of Justice has been lying to Congress ever since the inquiry into Fast and Furious began. On February 4, 2011, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich wrote that "ATF makes every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transport into Mexico." This letter, vetted by both the senior ranks of ATF as well as the Office of the Deputy Attorney General, is a flat-out lie.
This letter lays out Rep. Issa's justification for continued investigation, and throws down the gauntlet to Holder, and by extension, the Obama Administration, to come clean about this scandal. I encourage everyone to read this letter: it summarizes the extent of the corruption involved in the cover-up.

I am beginning to believe that Eric Holder will be forced to resign in order to deflect he damage from the Obama Administration. If he resigns, however, will he resist testifying about any wider extent of the scandal, or will Holder "roll over" on others?

Another question: Why in Hell did the DOJ do this, Fast & Furious, that is, in the first place?

Sounds Like Obama Has Given Up.

In this article, Micheal Goodwin of the New York Post writes:
The gist is this: President Obama has become a lone wolf, a stranger to his own government. He talks mostly, and sometimes only, to friend and adviser Valerie Jarrett and to David Axelrod, his political strategist.

The president’s workdays are said to end early, often at 4 p.m. He usually has dinner in the family residence with his wife and daughters, then retreats to a private office. One person said he takes a stack of briefing books. Others aren’t sure what he does.
The first paragraph, if true, is really bad for a President.  He would be seeking out, and finding, only the point of view of people that certainly agree with him in most matters.  Obama is avoiding intellectual challenges, and with such a small group, the odds of falling into groupthink are very great.

The second paragraph seems to portray a man who has given up, who is simply going through the motions until his tenure is completed.  If so, then he does himself, and the American people, a great disservice.

Wall Street Occupiers - Their Ignorance Explicated.

I have not posted about the Wall Street Occupiers because I have been unsure about their aims, or if they have any potential for lasting influence.  But they have seemed to be from the start to be remarkably ignorant of how the real world works for people who presumably have college educations.  The following quote says it better than I ever could:

Reader Harold Theurer sees another angle. Noting the passing of Steve Jobs, he wonders how many protesters carrying Apple products understand how those gadgets came to exist.

“What started out as two men in a garage with ideas and passion would have been nothing more than two guys in a garage with ideas and passion had it not been for an IPO on Dec. 12, 1980, when Apple went public at $22 per share,” he writes.

“Big Bad Wall Street raised $101 million for Mr. Jobs to expand his ideas, create jobs and change the landscape of technology. The next time any of the Wall Street occupiers makes an iTune purchase, it can be traced back to some Big Bad Banker’s belief in Mr. Jobs and his company.”

Class dismissed.


Long Gun Open Carry - Comming to A Starbucks Near You!

Well, Governor Brown did it.  Starting January 1, 2012, it will be illegal to carry an unloaded handgun in public in California.  But as noted here, and many other places, this bill says nothing about log guns.  I think we will see more protest activities in the future, but this time people will be carrying their long guns, especially so-called assault weapons.

This may not be a wise policy.

When confronted with firearms in public, our legislature reacts by outlawing the practice of carrying guns, even unloaded guns, where the easily frightened sheeple of California can see them.  Given that most people in California think that AK-47 and AR-15 rifles are illegal to possess because of the assault weapon ban, the sight of bullet button-equipped rifle might be just a little alarming, I would expect the legislature to act to prohibit public carry of unloaded rifles as well.

They may also re-visit the CA assault weapon law in order to outlaw Off-List Lowers and the use of bullet buttons.  It would be interesting to see if such efforts would survive the inevitable court challenges.

Update 10/11/2011:

Here is one reaction from an UOC advocate, Yih-Chau Chang, press secretary of Responsible Citizens of California:
Chang added that many such advocates, including himself, carry exposed, unloaded handguns on a daily basis and will likely choose to openly carry unloaded long guns in lieu of handguns once the law takes effect in January.
I wonder what the reaction of the Legislature will be once people start carrying rifles in public.

California Gun Bills - Results Are In

Governor Brown has signed or vetoed the various firearms bills sent to him by the Legislature.  This post on Calguns has the scorecard:

  • AB809 Long Gun Registration: Signed.  Starting January 1, 2014, all long gun transfers will have to be performed using a FFL and DROS.   In effect, California now requires long gun registration.
  • SB819 Redirection of DROS Fees: Signed. Starting immediately, DROS fees are to be redirected into the DOJ budget for regulatory and enforcement activities.
  • AB144 Unloaded Open Carry Ban: Signed.  As of January 1, 2012, open carry of an unloaded handgun will be a misdemeanor.
  • SB610 LTC Reform: Signed. Starting immediately, all agencies processing applications for a License To Carry a concealed weapon must follow uniform procedures as outlined in this bill.  This is a VERY GOOD result.
  • AB427 Handgun Ammunition: Vetoed. Thank God! At least we don't have to fight the AB 962 fight again this year!
These results are not as good as I hoped, but not as bad as I feared.  The worst of the bills that have passed is long gun registration, of course, and I am sorry about AB 144.  SB819 is not really a surprise since the state is broke, and Brown will be trying to sweep any amount to money he can into operating budgets.  But two very big pieces of legislation are now law: LTC application process must be uniform, and we don't have to re-fight the ammunition fight from last year.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Violent Crime in U.K. - Proof That Gun Control Does Not Equal Crime Control

This 2009 article from the Daily Telegraph indicates that, far from the violence free utopia that gun control advocate would have us believe would result, violent crime has increased in recent years until  the U.K. is the most violent country in Europe:
"The total number of violent offences recorded compared to population is higher than any other country in Europe, as well as America, Canada, Australia and South Africa."
 Clearly, largely eliminating firearms ownership has not helped prevent violent crime.  It is logical to assume that such policies would be equally fruitless in the United States.  The experiment in the U.K. shows that presence, or absence, of an object in society does not have an effect on complex social trends like violent crime.  Violent crime cannot be controlled by controlling guns, only by controlling criminals.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Presidential Campaign 2012 - Racism Rhetoric

As 2011 winds down we are entering the 2012 political season, and we must brace ourselves for a dominant theme of the political race: racism.

This will be the main theme of the progressive allies of President Obama, especially of economic indicators and job approval ratings continue to slide.  We can see a preview of this from Janeane Garofalo:
Garofalo told Keith Olbermann, "Herman Cain is probably well liked by some of the Republicans because it hides the racist elements of the Republican Party." Asked if she meant the entire Republican party, she added. "Conservative movement and tea party movement (are) one in the same."
To Garofalo, and other believers of identity politics, Obama's and Cain's blackness is the determinant of voter appeal or repulsion, not their ideals, political positions, or characters.  Therefore, conservatives supporting Cain must be doing so from latent white-guilt, not because of Cain's 9-9-9 economic plan.  Likewise, conservatives opposing Obama's re-election must be doing so because of overt racism, not because of his drunken-sailor budgets or intrusive medical care regulations.

To be sure, Obama will not play the race card.  He will hold himself and his campaign at a higher level and run on his record.  But the shakier that record looks, the more we can expect Progressive foot-soldiers like Garofolo to turn to racism to shore up the campaign dike. Expect it, dismiss it, and move on.  2012 is too important to allow Progressive Know-Nothings like Garolafo to dictate peoples votes.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Guns in Schools: Always a Bad Thing?

Common sense says that guns and schools go together like a match and gasoline: they know nothing good can come from the combination.  Joan Peterson thinks, and has said many times on her blog, that the idea of ordinary armed people stopping a school shooting incident is fantasy:

Who are these people that we would entrust to "protect" our children? How will they be vetted? At least we know that police officers are trained for this stuff and are vetted and hired to do the job of protecting us. That is their primary job when they are on duty. It is not a part-time, as needed, and when they are available.
But it is not fantasy.  It has happened in the past, and it could happen in the future.  How many times have teachers or students, legally armed, intervened in school shootings with beneficial effects? At least four times in the 20th century:

Utah allows carry permit holders to carry their concealed weapons on K-12 school property, but when was the last time an active shooter incident happened at a Utah school?  There are many more reports of unarmed teachers, staff, and students stopping active shooters.  To me it only makes common sense to allow teachers with carry permits to carry their concealed weapons while on duty.  We trust these people with our children already, so why not give them the ability to repel an attack?

Monday, October 3, 2011

Concealed Carry Laws - No Increase in Crime

While there is no way anti-rights people will admit this, the fact of the matter is that liberalized concealed carry laws have NOT increased violent crime.  Mike Stuckey, writing in this 2010 MSNBC article,  agrees:

"Statistics from the national Centers for Disease Control do indicate that the murder and mayhem predicted by many opponents of concealed-carry laws have not come to pass. But even that point, while celebrated by gun-rights activists and conceded by some concealed-carry opponents, is disputed by others.
Both sides do agree on one thing: More Americans than ever are carrying hidden guns."
 Oh, gosh! More guns in public does not mean more crime.  Joan, what ever will you say to that!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Does The Violence Policy Center Still Support a Handgun Ban?

While perusing the website of the Violence Policy Center, I came upon their March, 2000 study Unsafe In Any Hands: Why America Needs To Ban Handguns.  This study concludes:
"A clear-cut plan to ban handguns should be developed and implemented soon. Considering the many thousands who are killed or maimed by the handgun each year, how much more motivation do we need?"
If, as Joan Peterson claims:
 "Things have changed since that time. You won't find Josh Sugarman saying that today. The Brady Campaign is not saying it. The Supreme Court has assured you all that you have your guns for self defense and hunting. People change. Times change. Things change."
Then why is this study still on the violence Policy Center website?  Is that just an oversight, or is a handgun ban still a policy goal of the VPC?  This article seems to indicate that the VPC still supports a handgun ban:
“Their efforts at reaching out to minorities and women have failed,” said Rand, whose group advocates banning all handguns and some rifles but believes sporting rifles and shotguns should remain legal. “The industry constantly has to look for a way to make a guy who already owns 15 guns buy a new one.”
 Joan Peterson does have a point.  Much has changed since 2000.  Support for increased gun control has declined 22% since 2000, and the Supreme Court has interpreted the 2nd Amendment to protect the individual right, making this statement in the study hollow:
"An objection continually raised to gun control is that the Second Amendment to the Constitution somehow forbids it. This is pure myth. No gun control law has ever been overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court on Second Amendment grounds."
 What has not changed is the philosophical approach of the VPC, The Brady Campaign, and Joan Peterson: to control gun crime it is necessary to control guns.  I believe this to be wrong headed, even hilariously idiotic.  To control gun crime it is necessary to control criminals.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

License To Carry Statistics

This site is new to me, and I found it useful in this post, so I am adding to the Get The Facts section of the blog.  I really wish they had it in a table format, however.

In general, I have found that the hardest thing about blogging about gun-rights issues is finding statistical information about various aspects of firearms ownership and usage.  I have found some interesting things that give some data, and I will be blogging on those soon.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Violence Policy Center Admits Most Gun Control Laws Don't Work

I came across this page on the Violence Policy Center web site and was surpised to read the following:

"Whether at the local, state or federal level, the principal flaw that has plagued legislative efforts has been an almost exclusive focus on over-the-counter sales standards and a mistaken belief that it's possible to separate "good" handguns (those in our hands for self-defense) from "bad" handguns (those in the hands of criminals). Yet as noted earlier, most gun deaths are not crime related. And as the NRA correctly notes, criminals will be the last to obey any gun-control law.

The limitations of such an approach are illustrated by the recently enacted Brady bill. Waiting periods create a cooling-off period between the time a customer buys a gun and the time it may be possessed. In theory, this delay helps stop crimes of passion, and although anecdotal evidence suggests this happens occasionally, most suicides and shootings between friends and family occur with weapons already available.

In theory, background checks increase the chance of identifying those in proscribed categories who attempt to purchase firearms through legal channels. Such laws define the proscribed group as those with a prior felony conviction or deemed mentally unfit, yet such individuals rarely even attempt to buy guns personally from retail outlets.

A second conceptual flaw is the implicit assumption that anyone without a felony record is by definition "law-abiding." Under such systems individuals with arrest records and convictions for serious crimes are able to acquire guns legally because they have never been convicted of a felony. Patrick Purdy, the Stockton schoolyard killer, had a nine-year criminal history replete with weapons violations but could legally purchase a handgun under California law.

Recently, in the wake of the Brady bill's passage, attention has focused on the licensing of handgun owners. Licensing does offer some benefits: The information is useful in tracing weapons; identification of those in proscribed categories attempting to purchase firearms through legal channels is increased; and the application process itself may discourage sales to casual buyers. The limitations of licensing are that such systems are expensive to administer; it would have little effect on most gun violence, such as suicide or shootings between people who know each other; and anyone in a proscribed category desiring a gun could easily find one in the alternative, nonretail marketplace.

And although the most common argument heard in favor of licensing is "We license cars, why not license handguns?" public-health experts note that the licensing of cars had little effect on the death rate associated with autos. It was not until changes were made to the product itself--such as seat belts, air bags and improved structural design--that the number of deaths began to decline."
 Wow.  Let me summarize this:
  1. No such thing as a "good" or a "bad" handgun.  Assigning moral values to objects is a mistake.
  2. Waiting periods do not perform their intended task.
  3. Prohibited persons rarely make gun purchases from retail dealers, so background checks are useless.
  4. People with arrest records and violent misdemeanors should be prohibited from purchasing.
  5. Licensing schemes will not have a large effect on firearms violence.
  6. Only changes to the dangerous product itself can have an effect on the resultant violence.
Points 1, 2, 3, and 5 seem to show that VPC as of 1998, the copyright date of this document, have given up on the staples of gun control: licensing, and other purchase limitations.  Points 4, and 6 seem to telegraph what has happened since that time: more and more misdemeanor violent convictions result in prohibited status of individuals, and we have seen increasing ploys to dictate changes in gun manufacture, such as owner authorized handgun technology, micro-stamping, and ammunition serialization.

We also see the same old trend in the gun control side: the idea that controlling an object will have an effect on the actions of people: gun violence.  They do not seem to understand that if guns disappeared, gun violence would simply be converted into "knife violence", or "fist violence" or "bludgeon violence".

We have more guns, handgun and long guns, in this country than ever, but violent crime has been dropping every year. If VPC's logic was correct, we should be seeing an epidemic of gun violence, but despite the preaching of Joan Peterson, this is not happening.  

What is VPC trying to eliminate now?  Public carry of firearms by law abiding citizens.  They have clumsily telegraphed their intentions, but we need to stay vigilant. I think that the gun-rights community is on the offensive, and the sheer numbers of us will be telling in any election.  If I take the VPC claim that the 160 persons are actually valid carry permit holders convicted of gun crimes, then that means 6,140,646 carry permit holders have not committed any crimes.

That kind of makes the Violence Policy Center look pretty pathetic, doesn't it?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Joan Peterson Gets One Right

I have to admit, that when she's right, she's right:
"It's simple, or maybe not so simple. Things are not always as simple as the NRA and its minions would have us believe. What the gun guys really want is to quash the intent of May Issue states and open up the possibility of residents in those states suing for equal protection by saying “If they get to, why not us?” See the Indiana case mentioned in my previous post. This bill is part of a legal strategy to overturn all permitting processes in the states. The fact that some states have no permitting requirements at all provides them with an excuse to sue under the "equal protection" clause in the constitution - a favorite strategy of the NRA. That way, they get what they really want through the courts. Unfortunately for them, they don't win many of these challenges. So May Issue states would be California, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland and Hawaii. The permit holders in other states would just love to carry their guns into these states but they can't now. Thus we have H.R. 822. H.R. 822 will also allow concealed carry permit holders to carry in any state with a licensing system.  In other words, all states except Illinois."
Yes, that is pretty much the strategy,  but she does go on to mislead things a bit:
"So one could assume that all the dangerous people in Florida who can get permits there can carry wherever they want. "
"all those dangerous people" are still required to go through a background check, submit fingerprints, and a photograph, attend a training course, and the Florida permit is accepted in 30 states, so it must be a pretty good system, at least as good as in the 30 states that extend reciprocity.

The real problem with may-issue states is that issuing authorities, at least in urban California, interpret this to mean "no-issue", except to privileged people. In this way Illinois is actually more fair than California: they are at least when they deny a right they deny it to everyone.  H.R. 822 is indeed a political tactic, because the goal of the gun-rights movement is to ensure that law-abiding citizens who wish to carry arms in public for self-defense have the ability to do so.

H.R. 822 is perhaps premature, since the courts have not yet confirmed carry as a right covered by the 2nd Amendment, but once that right is affirmed, H.R. 822 will be ripe for implementation.  H.R. 822 really scares Joan and people like her.  They are losing, and they know it.  Their ability to limit gun-rights is slipping away day by day, and passage of H.R. 822 would be a significant defeat for them.  And once it is demonstrated that carry license holders do not cause problems in the states they visit, the Joan Peterson's will lose that much more or their dwindling credibility.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

This is Why People Like Joan Peterson Are Not the Majority

Joan Peterson, and people like her, claim that the majority of Americans want reasonable gun laws, and that the NRA is the sole obstacle to that aim.  Of course, laws establishing shall-issue carry permit systems are not reasonable.  Nor is the desire of many people to carry arms for self defense.  People "strutting" around in public frightens Joan and people like her, so they want to stop it.

Pesky NRA!

The NRA is powerful because millions of people think that the laws advocated by the NRA, and the Second Amendment Foundation, the Calguns Foundation, the California Rifle and Pistol Association, among others, are the truly reasonable ones.

Well, here is something else that I am sure will frighten Joan Peterson: Chicks with Guns, by Lindsay McCrum, which is discussed in this MSNBC article.  From the article:
“I learned two main lessons while working on this book,” said McCrum, who divides her time between New York City and California when she isn’t traveling for work. “One is that on the subject of guns, nobody is neutral. And the other is that when you get outside of the blue-state cities, everybody has a gun.”
 The 4 million dues-paying members of the NRA are only the tip of the iceberg.  The rest of it is the millions of non-member gun owners, many of them like the women portrayed in Chicks with Guns, who are none the less supporters of all of these unreasonable gun laws.  This large silent majority is the reason why Joan Peterson and her ilk are losing the gun control debate politically.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Explosive Gunwalker Development

As reported at the Sipsey Street Irregulars, U.S. government funds were by ATF agents used to purchase firearms which were then "walked" to cartel smugglers.

If this does not open up the scandal, I don't know what would.  This is a clear violation of ITAR regulations, unless the ATF received clearance from the U.S. State Department.  So now the question to as might be "Did the ATF request or receive export authorization from the State Department?"

Joan Peterson's Positions

I have been reading Joan Peterson's blog Common Gunsense for a few months, and like many pro-rights people I have wondered where she stands on particular issues.  Others have tried to explain what Joan believes, as well. This is sometimes hard to discern from her rather preachy articles, but her replies to comments are often very illuminating.  I have to mention that she is quite articulate in her beliefs, and despite the comments of people on her blog, has been consistent and uncompromising. In the following paragraphs I paraphrase her positions as I have come to understand them from reading her blog, and then include my comments. Let us begin:
  1. Joan Peterson supports a ban on standard capacity magazines, and wants to limit magazine capacity.
  2. Joan Peterson supports restriction of firearms ownership rights of felons and mentally ill.
  3. Joan Peterson supports a ban on certain types of assault weapon, particularly the AK-47, the weapon in question in this URL.
  4. She seems to support a ban on new purchases, with non-transferable ownership right for owners of newly banned weapons upon a new law going into effect.
These positions are supported by this post:
"More importantly here is that we should be restricing high capacity magazines and we should also restrict access to guns for people like this in any and all ways we can. We should also reconsider a ban on certain types of assault weapons. It would take a while to get them off the streets, but eventually, we may be able to have some sanity in our country regarding guns."
I fully support point number 2, and it is the law today that felons and mentally ill individuals cannot buy firearms.  But with so many firearms in circulation, and private party sales not requiring background checks, prohibited people can still legitimately purchase firearms. 
  1. Joan Peterson believes that more guns necessarily result in more guns deaths.
  2. Joan Peterson believes that guns should be properly and safely secured against theft and accidental use.
  3. Joan Peterson does not believe that a gun ban is legally possible.
  4. Joan Peterson believes that gun confiscation was never an option.
These positions are supported by this post, emphasis added:
"I believe that more guns = more gun deaths. That is my personal belief and that of a lot of folks who work to prevent gun violence. We want guns out of the hands of those who should not have them. We want those of you who have them to make sure they are safe and strored so they are not stolen which is where most of the crime guns come from. Our belief does not translate into what is a possible or probable action. Banning guns is off the table after the 2 Supreme Court rulings. Confiscating guns was never on the table. Life is what it is. There are a lot of guns out there- too many in my estimation. I know I can't do much about that except to raise awareness and get you guys to admit that there a few simple and common sense things we can do together to stem the tide of gun violence. You guys know perfectly well what I propose and you keep asking as if I have never answered the question. I call that harassment. It won't work. Ask me something you don't know the answer to and maybe you will get an answer. But please do not keep asking what I propose and please do not keep saying I want your guns. That is folly on your part. It is a useless line of argument and discussion."
And by this post, emphasis added:
"Keep observing as I know you will. You will not see me suggesting a national plan to disarm citizens. Again- take it easy out there. Your life will be a lot less stressful. "
I do not believe that point 1 is true, but I would be hard pressed to find definitive statistics to prove it.  No responsible gun owner could possible disagree with point 2, in my opinion, if for no other reason than guns are valuable property.  Point 3 assures us that Joan Peterson understands the legal reality in the post-Heller United States, no matter what her personal feelings on the matter are, but I'd bet she thinks that a renewed Assault Weapon Ban would be constitutional.  I think there is a solid argument to the contrary, but that issue will only be taken up if such a law is passed. On point 4, however, that might have been true for the people Joan Peterson knows in the anti-rights community, but it is not true of all:
Feinstein said on CBS-TV's 60 Minutes, February 5, 1995, "If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban, picking up every one of them . . . Mr. and Mrs. America, turn 'em all in, I would have done it. I could not do that. The votes weren't here."[22]
So Joan Peterson is incorrect claiming that gun confiscation was never an objective of the anti-gun political community.  They simply lost that argument years ago.
  1. Joan Peterson wants to limit guns that allowed to be used in self defense,  and believes that she and her allied organizations are best suited to determine those limits.
  2. Joan Peterson does not understand "gun culture", and is frightened by people who live within the gun culture.
These points are supported by this post, emphasis added:
"I was, and still am, in favor of banning certain types of assault weapons similar to those banned in the previous AWB. When you guys talk about banning guns, you appear to be saying that we would ban ALL guns. I'm sure you know that is not true. My desire to have zero gun deaths is an aspirational goal. One must have goals. My goal is not to ban all of your guns. Some guns, to me and those with whom I work, are guns that should not be available to the average citizen. They were not meant to be used for hunting or self defense. Those are the ones we think should not be in the market place. But given that that is unlikely to happen, if you MUST have those guns because you perceive them to be necessary for whatever reason that would be, having fewer rounds to shoot from them is only sensible. You just plain do not need to shoot off a lot of rounds for self defense. On the face of it, it makes no sense to most people. Many who are gun owners are hunters who only own hunting guns and they are not interested in the least in the type of military style weapons some of you collect or claim to need. These folks would never consider large capacity magazines. It is a minority of you who feel this way. Gun owners are a diverse group. Many of them happen to agree with me and that has been shown in most polling over many years so it is not a one time response. So, I do want to ban magazines of greater than 10 or 11 rounds. That is true. I support the McCarthy bill. You knew that, though. I have never said I would try to ban guns other than those that I have mentioned above. It will never happen plain and simply. Even if I did believe that, it would just never happen, so why try? I don't like all of the guns out there and don't find them to be necessary personally except for hunting and some for self defense. I'm just not into guns like you guys are. We live in 2 distinct cultures. We are trying to understand this but it sure is difficult, right? I see the enthusiasm at gun shows. I see all the people who like to look at and buy guns there. That is just a culture so foreign to me that it makes me uncomfortable. Truly, I do not know anyone who feels as you guys do and I know a lot of people from many walks of life. I know a lot of gun owners, by the way, and I have written their views. They represent the views of the majority of gun owners."
 I  think Joan Peterson's desire to limit the defensive capabilities of firearms allowed to citizens stems from her fear of the "gun guys".  It is natural to fear what one does not understand, as it is to mistrust those whom you fear.  But excuse me, I will not acquiesce to limits on my self defense weapon choices based on Joan Peterson's fears, and the actions of felons who can't be trusted outside of prison, let alone in possession of firearms.

I will agree that in society that some kind of compromise must be made.  Here is my suggestion: Non-law enforcement citizens should be allowed to possess and carry in public any weapon a law enforcement officer is allowed to carry, and law enforcement officers should be limited to weapons that citizens are allowed to possess.

Police are not the military, and I am disturbed by the apparent militarization of police agencies and the increasing use of tactical squads to serve no-knock warrants in circumstances that do not seem to justify such force.  Police are not a special class of individuals in society: they are citizens with special duties and responsibilities, but the citizen is, or should be, sovereign.
  1. Joan Peterson thinks that public schools should have no role in teaching about firearm safety.
This  point is supported by this post, emphasis added:
"You guys have talked about this before. It's just not going to happen. As you know, our schools are having lots of budget cuts and teachers have a heck of time getting in the required subject matter as it is. To think a teacher would now teach gun safety is a non starter. I think you all should abandon that idea since it just isn't going to happen. Not to mention that people like me would show up at School Board meetings and lobby heavily against it. And I would get a lot of people to that meeting. Since I used to be on the School Board, I know how those things work."
But schools are used to teach about safety all the time, especially driving safety, but I guess automobiles are non-threatening enough to not scare folks.  Granted, her point about teacher work loads and budget cuts are spot-on, but I think it is telling that she could muster a LOT of opposition from parents opposing firearms safety training because most parents are ignorant, and therefore fearful, about guns.

However, this is an issue that is being discussed in some school districts in the U.S.  Virginia has passed legislation that requires the state board of education to design course materials to teach firearm safety in elementary schools.  Arizona has designed a high school course that actually requires students to fire one shot safely at a target.  This law was signed by then-Governor Janet Napolitano, currently the the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security in the Obama Administration.  Ironic.
  1. Joan Peterson is most definitely against carrying guns in public for self defense. 
  2. Joan Peterson opposes shall-issue carry permit laws.
This post supports the previous point, emphasis added:
This is the problem with many of our state's permit to carry laws. There was a reason that permits used to be "may issue". Sheriffs and local Police Chiefs understood that there were some people in their communities who would put themselves or others at risks if they were allowed to get a permit to carry or purchase. They screened applicants more carefully and had the good judgement to deny some folks permits. Now most states have "shall issue" permit laws making it more difficult to deny permits.
And this post:
"Yes, indeed, to err is human. We try as a society to make sure those errors don't result in death. We can't stop them all but we sure should try. But when more deadly weapons are owned and carried by gun owners, making an error can result in tragedy. That is why there shouldn't be so many guns in so many public places where errors can happen. "
This is practically the theme of Joan's blog, every article, and every comment she writes.  She knows that she cannot do anything about guns in private homes, but she does not believe that guns in public have any social utility.

I will grant  her one point, however.  She posts many examples of people acting stupidly with firearms, with deadly results.  To me, this is a good argument for training, perhaps government mandated training, but that is a thorny constitutional issue still to be worked out. And I can cite just as many cases of firearms used successfully in self defense as Joan can cite of firearms stupidly mishandled.

But that is not really her argument.  She is adamant that her goal is to reduce gun deaths, and obviously eliminating guns from some aspect of society, guns deaths would be eliminated.  No guns, no gun deaths.  So any citation of the many studies that have been published enumerating the social utility of firearms falls of deaf ears.

And she overlooks, or agrees with, the abuse “may-issue” permit laws perpetrated by law enforcement agencies that deny all people carry permits, except those that are somehow “special”, like well connected celebrities, businessmen, and “friends of the sheriff” who have recently made large campaign contributions. These practices, rampant in urban California, make a mockery of “screened applicants” and “good judgement”. Hence the nationwide wave of shall-issue carry permit laws, taking the power of discretion away from the authorities who abused the trust or the citizens.
  1. Joan Peterson makes no distinction between acts of violence and the object used to commit the act.
  2. Joan Peterson is not really interested in thoughtful discussion of 2nd Amendment rights.
This point is supported this post, emphasis added:
"Good for you, Paul. Knives and guns do actually kill people- the wounds from a knife and the injuries from the bullets coming from the gun kill. I know because 3 bullets killed my sister. It's a matter of semantics but it makes absolutely no difference to the outcome whether or not a gun or the person with the gun killed someone. To me it didn't matter. I just knew that a gun took my sister's life."
This is Joan's ultimate motivation. All of her positions stem from the murder of her sister, and this also explains her absolutely uncompromising stand on her beliefs. It should be no surprise that she ultimately wrote this:

After careful thought and reflection about the direction my blog has taken since I asked questions and got answers from the "gun guys", I have changed the purpose of my blog. As stated in my last post, I have found that most of the comments were just not getting the two sides of this volatile issue to a place where a thoughtful discussion could take place. Though the title of my blog indicates that I would like to have a discussion, I am not sure that is possible “

which displays her fundamental ignorance and intolerance. Joan Peterson is not really interested in “thoughtful discussion” when that discussion does not agree with her views. She cannot get over her sisters death, will not compromise her view that the availability of guns in public should be curtailed, and can be no more swayed by the counter arguments of those who post on her blog then we can be by her articles. The disagreement is one of fundamental world views, and cannot be bridged.
  1. Joan Peterson sometimes writes really stupid stuff.
This point is supported by this post, emphasis added:
"The "bust" pictures? Hand grenades and RPGs are sold at gun shows all over the country. They could be sold by private sellers who may or may not require background checks. "
which sounds as if she is claiming that military grade weapons are routinely sold a gun shows, but then she adds this:
"It looks like some hand grenades are for sale on-line:"
Her readers jump all over that, of course, causing her to backpedal a bit:
"Thanks for all of your comments about grenades, most of which are not published here. I am aware that the grenades sold on-line or sometimes at gun shows, which they have been, are the casings without the explosives needed to make them a dangerous weapon. "he grenade casings or shells when they are configured into an inert format are not illegal to possess or to be sold. They become an illegal dangerous weapon when they are reconfigured to make them active or when a suspect purports as a form of intimidation that the device will explode or purports for sell that the device can explode or fragment." from: So the problem with having these type of "grenades" available is that they could be made into devices that can explode and cause serious damage. One wonders why the casings are even for sale anywhere. "
So, they are not real grenades after all, but that really does not matter. Joan does not like them, they make her scared, so they should be banned.  Gosh, maybe she will go after lengths of pipe next?

While I continue to read Common Gunsense, I do so less often, and I have stopped posting comments to her articles. I feel that I thoroughly understand her positions and I believe that she is not really interested in what the pro-rights community has to say. She is only interested in preaching to us, while those that still post comments are trying to convince her that she is utterly wrong. A pointless exercise for the reasons I list above. The “debate” on Common Gunsense is at an impasse, and has been for a long time, so reading the site has become quite tiresome.


Updated: 9/26/2011

Comment from this post:
"I believe there is a difference between someone carrying a loaded gun on their hip in a public place and a group of unarmed people rallying."
In other words Joan Peterson does not believe that the 2nd Amendment protects a civil right to be armed in public.  As a strict matter of constitutional law, she is right at this time, but I am optimistic that the Supreme Court will find in favor or carry some time on the next couple of years.


Updates: 9/27/2011

Comment from this post:
"You guys don't care about anything except your selfish desire to carry your toys with you wherever you go. It's the law. The public doesn't even know what's in that law and would find it disconcerting to see you walking around with your holstered gun as you love to do. Just like the public at the zoo in Indiana. And when the legislators who voted in favor of the bill realized what it meant, they started to change their minds. But keep carrying your guns, Bryan. I'm sure everyone will think it's just wonderful to see a guy with a loaded holstered gun strutting around in their communities. It's a great sight- so friendly and peaceful."

This post says it all: the desire to be armed for self defense is "selfish", and we are demeaned as childish for wanting our "toys" where ever we go.  And of course the public must have been somehow hoodwinked into voting in favor of permissive carry laws because there is just no common sense in the idea of carrying firearms in public.  And what Joan is really objecting to about the Indiana incident is the new state law preempting local gun ordinances.  The individual in question was not breaking any law, but just making zoo patrons, and Joan, uncomfortable. To Joan, we are not citizens exercising rights, we are "strutting" around, purposely creating a disturbance.