Monday, May 30, 2011

Second Amendment - Not Outdated!

I read this letter in the San Jose Mercury News:

Second Amendment is clearly outdated

I read the article on "A treasure chest of stolen weapons" (Page B1, May 27). Every day, without fail, someone gets fatally shot or severely injured from a shooting. The Second Amendment is about as outdated as anything that has to do with the pre-Revolutionary and Civil Wars in this country. Since we no longer need a militia (given the new Department of Homeland Security, which the president just renewed), can anyone in good conscience -- especially the police -- explain why we should not have stricter controls over who owns and uses weapons, and the type of weapons allowed? Surely there will be responses (again) that cars kill more people than guns. Does that justify the lax administration of deadly weapons, especially automatic, semi-automatic and Saturday night specials? Haven't we had enough of this?

Gus Holweger
San Jose

 Outdated, huh? Tell that to people who really needed to be armed, and, thanks to the Second Amendment, had guns to protect themselves:

After the storm, the neighborhood association had to act as law enforcement and emergency response unit as city services collapsed and the police force was unable to protect them.
Citizens organized armed patrols and checked on the elderly. They slept on their porches with loaded shotguns and bolted awake when intruders stumbled on the aluminum cans they had scattered on the sidewalk.
Gunshots rang out for days, sometimes terrifyingly close.

After any major disaster, a flood, a fire, or an earthquake, some people will use the ensuing disorder to help themselves to your money, property, or valuables.  And sometimes the police are not going to be there to help you, or anyone else.  In New Orleans, some police joined the looters. 

Law and order can break down, and if it does, do you have the means to protect yourself?  If so, then thank the Second Amendment.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Newt Gingrich to Run for President


Weapons On Campus: Disasterous Only for Anti-Gun Bigots

The Texas state senate has passed a bill to allow citizens with CHL licenses to carry on public college campuses.  This article in the UK newspaper The Guardian has this particular bit of silliness:

Democratic senator Judith Zaffirini, who was a student at the University of Texas in 1966 when sniper Charles Whitman killed 12 people and wounded dozens of others, argued against the bill. She predicted mass chaos if police responded to a call and found several people with guns drawn.
Perhaps Ms. Zaffirini was not on campus that day, because not only was the Whitman massacre perhaps the first campus mass killing, it was also one in which armed citizens, some of them students, assisted police by taking Whitman under fire while officers made their way up to Whitmans position and shot him dead, ending the attack.

Around 20 minutes later, once Whitman began facing return fire from the authorities and armed civilians who had brought out their personal firearms to assist police, he used the waterspouts on each side of the tower as gun ports, allowing him to continue shooting largely protected from the gunfire below but also greatly limiting his range of targets. 

In the course of that 90 minutes, many of Austin’s citizens, including many Vietnam veterans, risked their lives in returning fire against Whitman or rushing onto campus to pull out victims. Many years now, on the anniversary of the massacre, the UT community pays homage to the heroes of that day.

And finally, we have the remembrances of an eyewitness to the events of that day. And guess what? There were guns on campus:

None of the professor’s offices were occupied except for one whose door was open. As I walked down the hall toward that office the sound of a large caliber rifle thundered from that open doorway followed by two men talking. After all the bizarre events of the last few minutes it didn’t seem strange to me when I peeked around the office doorway to see one professor shooting a deer rifle at the top of tower while the other fed him ammunition. It never entered my mind to question why an English professor would have his deer rifle in his office complete with boxes of ammunition. This was Texas after all. Guns were commonplace. From the office windows, we could see the top of the tower clearly. Small puffs of smoke were coming from the rifle of the sniper on the observation deck. The large glass faced clock above the observation deck was shattered from others shooting back at him. The professor ran through several boxes of shells before running out of rounds. My ears were ringing. 
So, "mass chaos" has already happened,  it happened on the UT campus on August 1, 1966, and the police did what police always do: exercise good judgement. No citizen was shot, injured or arrested by the police, except for Whitman.  Indeed, citizen gunfire is credited with suppressing Whitman and limiting his ability to kill more people.  Citizens also used good judgement, not shooting indiscriminately but making sure they had identified the correct target.

Why is there so much hysterical opposition to on-campus concealed carry?  Perhaps the anti-gun Left is afraid that if the last sacred gun-free zone is lost, then what has happened elsewhere will happen there as well: nothing. No increase in violence or suicides.  No people "snapping" and starting a shooting rampage. No police accidentally shooting students because they encounter one who is armed.  And then it will be proved, once again, as it has been proved in every state that has implemented a shall-issue concealed carry permit law, that their arguments are completely false and without merit.

Monday, May 9, 2011

It's Monday...

... so Joan Peterson has another one of her anti-gun screeds out on her blog.  Here is what I posted in response:

If a "majority" of Americans agree with your view that guns should not be carried in public, why has not one single shall-issue law or constitutional carry law been repealed by the vote of this "majority"? 
Also a survey of 600 individuals in five states hardly proves that a majority of American favor your views.
I once asked, on Common Gunsense, what additional gun policies and regulations Joan Peterson advocated, to state them clearly.  She chided me,, saying that I already knew from reading her blog.  Well, I didn't, but it did inspire me to read some of her old posts, and I can easily gather that Joan Peterson is very much against people carrying guns in public, that the spread of laws liberalizing firearm carry is a threat to public safety.  Her entire article is about the proposed concealed carry law in Wisconsin that has a good chance of passing this year with a State Legislature and Governor both controlled by the Republican Party.

Thinking about her thesis, that more should be done to prevent people getting guns who should not have them, I really cannot disagree.  But the Devil is in the details of just what she might propose.  In a future post, I may finally do what I have been thinking of doing to a while: describe what I think would be the ideal gun regulation scheme.  And note that I DO NOT think that there should no regulation at all, but I do think that citizens should be allowed, if they choose, to carry firearms during their daily, lawful, business.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Osama Bin Laden Dead!

My first thought was "Burn in Hell, motherfucker!".

On reflection, I have some other thoughts.

First, stories coming out describing how we found this Bin Laden indicate that information obtained from interrogations of GitMo inmates was a critical starting point, particularly those of Kahlid Sheik Mohammad.  It seems that President G.W. Bush is entirely vindicated in establishing this prison.
Second, Bin Laden was not hiding in some cave in the Hindu Kush Mountains, but living in a custom-built mansion withing easy driving distance of Islamabad,  the capitol of Pakistan!  I would hate to be the President of Pakistan on the phone to President Obama, explaining how the Pakistani government cannot control its own intelligence agency, the ISI.

Third, how many days will pass until Arab street protesters burn President Obama in effigy?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Joan Peterson Puling on Common Gunsense

You can read her latest puling about the NRA here.  Much of what she finds scary I actually agree with: citizens should be able to possess arms that are comparable to those carried by soldiers.  If you are uncomfortable with people having fully automatic rifles, then semi-automatic should be allowed, but so-called assault weapons and magazines of greater than 10 round limits should actually be protected by the 2nd Amendment.

In a post to her article I asked Mrs. Peterson what specific policies she would promote to attain her aim of keeping guns out of the hands of people she believes should not have them.  I bet she never approves my comment for publication.

Hey, Mrs. Peterson, if you're not afraid of debate, why not post here.  I don't moderate at all.  Anything you write will be allowed to appear.  What are you afraid of?