VCDL Update for 9/27/2013

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Abbreviations used in VA-ALERT:

1.  Arrests of illegal buyers at Va. gun shows trending up
2.  Sen Marsh’s “Celebratory Gunfire” law in the works
3.  VCDL needs a new VA-ALERT editor
4. VA Motorsports Park ‘BugOut’ innocent victim disarmament zone
5.  “No concealed guns” signs at Halifax Regional Hospital locations
6.  Who needs a gun while driving in Russell County?
7.  Warning: D.C. cops under orders to arrest tourists with empty bullet casings
8.  More on openly-carried long arms
9.  Colion Noir: Open carry demonstrations [Video]
10. Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons: Guns do not cause crime, people do
11. Obama enraged gun control couldn’t pass Democrat-led Senate
12. Mayor Bloomberg is the best friend of 2nd Amendment advocates
13. A New Yorker’s view of gun control
14. The Second Amendment and “weapons of war”
15. So they’re banning gun safety classes in the name of gun safety?
16. Gun-free zones at Denny’s
17. Colorado Democrat: Legislature, not guns, will keep you safe

1. Arrests of illegal buyers at Va. gun shows trending up

Member David Custer emailed me this:


By Mark Bowes
September 3, 2013

Arrests of customers trying to illegally buy firearms at Virginia gun shows through the first six months of this year are on track to greatly surpass the total arrests made in 2012, according to newly released state police data.

But the 39 people charged represent only a fraction of those involved – 0.15 percent – in the 24,870 firearm transactions at 36 gun shows from Jan. 1 through June 30, the data show.

Background checks conducted by the Virginia Firearms Transaction Center of people seeking to purchase guns through federally licensed firearm dealers at gun shows resulted in 145 people being denied permission to buy a firearm through the first six months of this year, state police say.

Of those, 39 were arrested by state troopers and charged with being a person prohibited by law from possessing a firearm – usually a felon or someone with a mental disability or ruled by a court to be mentally incompetent. A breakdown of the specific charges was not immediately available.

If the arrest trend continues, it will easily exceed – perhaps significantly – the 47 people arrested at state gun shows out of 51,448 firearm transactions in 2012. A total of 380 people were blocked from buying guns that year.

State police declined to speculate on why the arrest rate was climbing but said the department has not changed its enforcement efforts or increased the number of troopers available to monitor gun shows. They noted that the number of gun shows has increased slightly this year, from 33 during the first six months in 2011, to 34 during that period in 2012, to 36 this year.

State police began tracking gun show transactions in 2011. The denial rate has declined slightly over the past 21/2 years, from 1 percent in 2011, to 0.7 percent in 2012, to 0.5 percent so far this year.

The arrest rate has fluctuated from 0.11 percent in 2011, to 0.09 percent in 2012, to 0.15 percent through June 30 of this year, according to state police.
“We are talking tiny numbers here,” said Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, one of the state’s leading gun rights groups. “But it appears that less people are being denied, but more of those (being denied) are being arrested.”

Van Cleave wondered whether the numbers reflect a better job by police in making arrests or more felons trying to buy guns. “Or is it more (misdemeanor offenders) who didn’t know they were disqualified from owning a gun based on a previous domestic violence conviction?”

People convicted of misdemeanor domestic assault are among those prohibited from buying or possessing firearms in Virginia.

“On the arrests, we don’t know how many got convictions and how many might have been a mistake,” Van Cleave said. “We know the background check system can produce a lot of false hits.”

Gun control advocate Andrew Goddard, president of the Virginia Center for Public Safety, had a very different take on the numbers.

“My first impression is that the numbers continue to indicate that people who are not legally allowed to purchase or possess firearms are still trying to buy them from licensed dealers at Virginia gun shows,” Goddard said. “This is not news, it has been going on for years despite denials from the show promoters” and others.

The fact that the number of arrests is small compared with the number of denials “would make me think that Virginia State Police is perhaps allowing too many folks through the net, though they do seem to be doing a more thorough job in 2013.”

Goddard added that “we can only guess” at the number of prohibited gun buyers who are aware of their status and take advantage of “buying the plentiful supply of guns from unlicensed sellers” at gun shows, and therefore avoiding detection.

Existing Virginia law requires only federally licensed dealers to conduct background checks for gun purchases at gun shows. There is no such requirement for the private sale or transaction of firearms between individuals at gun shows. Virginia legislators defeated several proposals earlier this year that would have required expanded background checks.

“If the number of prohibited buyers that know they are prohibited is greater than those that either do not know or are prepared to take a risk, then the total number of potentially dangerous people getting their hands on firearms at Virginia gun shows is unacceptably high,” Goddard said.

“When you consider the damage that just one prohibited buyer can cause with a firearm, then the numbers of known denials is quite alarming,” added Goddard, who took a swipe at the Virginia Citizens Defense League: “So much for the VCDL talking point that ‘criminals don’t go to Virginia gun shows!’?”

But Van Cleave saw the opposite – “a tiny number of denials based on percentage of sales.”

“We know that many denials are false, so that number is probably considerably smaller,” Van Cleave said. “We have way more criminals than the number of denials, so it confirms that criminals are not generally shopping at gun shows (which have a lot of police officers watching who is coming and going). Crime is dropping in Virginia, again confirming that more guns and/or gun shows don’t equal more crime.”

2. Sen Marsh’s “Celebratory Gunfire” law in the works

Ever the politician and never the statesman, Democratic Senator Henry Marsh of Richmond is planning on introducing a bill to make “celebratory” gunfire a new crime (on top of all the other laws that are violated by such a thing).  With your help, VCDL will stop that bill in its tracks in January.

REMINDER:  Lobby Day is on January 20th, 2014 at 9 AM at the General Assembly Building in Richmond.  Plan NOW on being there and helping us fight against bills such as this.  We will be having a rally at 11 AM at the Bell Tower that day, too.

Member Rick Sandlin sent me this:

From The Virginia Gun Owners Forum:

3.  VCDL needs a new VA-ALERT Update editor

Jay Britt, who has been helping compile the VCDL Update for the last four years is stepping down to concentrate on work and his family.  Jay and EM Brandy Polinowski each alternate compiling one Update every two weeks, saving me countless amounts of time and energy.

I want to give my heartfelt thanks to Jay and Brandy!  (Brandy is continuing to do the updates.)

Here is what is involved for those who might want to volunteer to replace Jay:

1.  I select news items that I like and forward them to a special email address, where they are accumulated.

2.  Once every two weeks that week’s editor takes the current list of items and generates a table of contents and formats the text of the various news items for the Update.

3.  The editor emails me the table of contents, where I might make changes, such as reordering, adding, or deleting some items.

4.  The editor then emails me the Update with my table of contents changes (if any), which I then do a final edit, adding my own comments, etc.

5.  There is software to help with some of the above actions, which will be provided to you.

If you are interested in becoming the next Update editor, reply to this email and let me know.

4. VA Motorsports Park ‘BugOut’ innocent victim disarmament zone

Member Charles Teets sent me this copy of an email that went to the Virginia Motorsports Park:

Every Labor day weekend for the past 13 years, my son and I have loaded in our Volkswagen and headed to Manassas from Chester, VA for the BugOut.

It has been a great bonding time for us, looking at some really great cars, enjoying the races, and enjoying our “man time”.

When I learned the BugOut was coming to Virginia Motorsports Park in Petersburg I was ecstatic. No longer would we have to drive 3 hours and fight NoVa traffic to enjoy the VW awesomeness.

This morning, we loaded the car and were preparing to head out.  Being the responsible gun owner I am, I checked the VMP website to see if they had a policy on handguns. To my dismay, under track policy, #6 states (in all caps, with an exclamation point): NO FIREARMS ALLOWED!

My heart sunk. I was at a crossroads. Do I risk the lives of me and my son by going unarmed into a “gun free zone” (I’m sure you are all aware that gun free zones are where all the mass shootings take place as its easy pickings for criminals) or do we change our 13 year old tradition?

Not willing to place my son or myself in a situation to become another statistic, I made the decision that we need to come up with a new Labor Day tradition. My son is 18 now, and while a bit disappointed, even he understands the importance of being able to defend himself and agreed that Virginia Motorsports Park was not a safe place.

While we will miss the Volkswagen awesomeness that is the BugOut, we understand that it is the property owners right to refuse access to their property for law abiding citizens, who choose to legally carry handguns for self defense.

I hope that VMP reassesses their policies and understands that all the mass shootings we’ve heard so much about recently happen in “gun free zones.”  And if VMP does not understand the importance of being able to defend ones self and his family, I hope that the BugOut organizers do and will look for a new venue for the show. I’d rather drive 3 hours and fight Northern Virginia traffic, than place my son and I in a “gun free zone” for an entire day.

I sincerely hope that our Labor Day tradition of looking at awesome VWs can resume next year. We have yet to come up with a new tradition and its already noon. Maybe we’ll just go fishing.

5. “No concealed guns” signs at Halifax Regional Hospital locations

VCDL member “Robert” sent me this:

I have seen at several locations that are owned by the Halifax Regional Hospital, signs that say “no concealed guns.”  I would like to get the word out that **guns** are not allowed on hospital property.

The new owners put these signs up and the signs could be misleading as someone carring concealed would believe it is alright to carry openly, as Virginia is a open carry state. I asked one nice lady at the office where they take payments for doctors about the signs and she said that they did not like them because everyone knows that guns are not allowed on hospital property and a lot of questions are being asked. So i hope that no one is arrested for misreading these signs.

6. Who needs a gun while driving in Russell County?

Member Rick Hamm sent me this:


By Tarah Taylor
September 5, 2013


September 5, 2013 update:

No charges will be filed in a crash that ended with a deadly shooting, according to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office.

The sheriff’s office, Virginia state police, and the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office say Douglas Witt was driving a flatbed truck on Copper Creek Road in Russell County on August 20th when they say he rammed into an SUV.

Witt’s wife and daughter were in the SUV that went down an embankment.

The wife told investigators Witt continued aggressively toward her and their daughter, so she shot and killed him.

Investigators ruled the shooting was justified and will not prosecute.

August 21, 2013 story:

Russell County, Virginia authorities say a crash led to a shooting in Castlewood, Virginia on Tuesday.

According to Commonwealth’s Attorney Brian Patton, it happened on Copper Creek Road just before 8:00 Tuesday morning. Our crews were on the scene Tuesday but authorities would not release information about the incident until Wednesday morning.

Patton says one vehicle hit another and the driver of the vehicle that caused the crash was shot. Patton says 53-year-old Douglas Allen Whitt of Abingdon, Virginia died at the scene from the gunshot.

Patton did not release any other details about the crash or others involved and said the investigation continues.

We’ll bring you more information as it is available.

7. Warning: D.C. cops under orders to arrest tourists with empty bullet casings

Just when you thought that DC was beginning to understand the Heller decision after four years…

From The Washington Examiner:

By Paul Bedard
September 5, 2013

Washington police are operating under orders to arrest tourists and other non-residents traveling with spent bullet or shotgun casings, a crime that carries a $1,000 fine, a year in jail and a criminal record, according to a new book about the city’s confusing gun laws.

“Empty shell casings are considered ammunition in Washington, D.C., so they are illegal to possess unless you are a resident and have a gun registration certificate,” pens Emily Miller in her investigative book, “Emily Gets Her Gun: … But Obama Wants to Take Yours.”

Under the law, live or empty brass and plastic casings must be carried in a special container and unavailable to drivers. Having one, for example, in a cup holder or ash tray is illegal.

She told Secrets that the police are “under orders to arrest tourists or other legal gun owners from out of state who wouldn’t think to empty brass and plastic from their cars or pockets.”

In her newly debuted book about the difficulty getting a gun in Washington, known for tough anti-gun laws, D.C. Police provided Miller with a copy of a recent “roll call” advisory that tells cops to overlook spent casings in the cars and trucks of city residents who have their gun registration certificate with them when detained, despite the law.

The advisory gives the example of a used .45 cartridge in a SUV’s cup holder easily seen by a cop who had pulled a District resident over for an unrelated traffic issue. “In order to comply with the law,” said the July 2012 police advisory, “the cartridge case should be stored so it is not accessible from the from the passenger compartment and the driver is, in fact violating the law and could be placed under arrest for this action.”

Because the driver had a copy of his District gun license, arrest was not recommended.

Tourists without that city license, however, don’t get the same treatment, said Miller.

She highlights the case of Army Specialist Adam Meckler who in 2011 was arrested for coming into the city from Virginia for a meeting at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs while accidentally carrying a handful of bullets but no gun in his backpack. As he passed through a magnetometer, a guard yelled “Cuff him!” and he was held for hours, not knowing his crime.

“People looked at me like I was a terrorist,” he said, calling the incident an accident. He was prosecuted and almost lost a job because he now has a criminal record and is on the city’s gun offenders list. “I felt like I was registering as a sex offender,” he told Miller who noted that NBC Meet the Press host David Gregory went “scot-free” for brandishing an illegal 30-round magazine while interviewing NRA’s Wayne LaPierre in the network’s D.C. studios last December.

Miller, a Washington Times editor, called the D.C. law stupid. “A brass candlestick can do more harm than an empty brass casing. I often have empty casings in my bags and clothes from when they fly off at the range, or as souvenirs,” she wrote.

The law covering the transport of guns, ammo, and used ammo casings was enacted in 2009 after the Supreme Court overturned the District’s 30-year gun ban in 2008.

8. More on openly-carried long arms

Member Joseph Rees sent me this in response to “VA-ALERT: Openly carried long arms – VCDL’s position”:

A few days ago, my wife and I were driving along a suburban street in Northern Virginia, when we spotted two young men (perhaps they were of high school age-they were about 20 years old, give or take a few years), who were walking down the sidewalk with AR-15s slung over their shoulders.

My wife remarked that she found that “troubling.” I remarked that they were doing nothing wrong, and we shouldn’t worry about it. She countered that it brought to mind “Columbine” and “New Town.” My response was that those incidents were very rare in the grand scheme of things, and that she had a much higher chance of being involved in an auto accident at that point than
she had of those two boys having any wrongful intent. Here gut-response was because she had always lived in a place where open carry is fairly rare, but there are many places where lots of people walk around armed all the time without ever discharging their weapons, other than at a target range or hunting ground. She had to admit that their actions, while not as common as
perhaps 200 years ago, are perfectly normal and should not be viewed as threatening. As it turned out (as the odds overwhelmingly predicted it would), those two young men did not visit some “gun-free” slaughter zone and shoot up innocent people. They apparently just went on home and put their
weapons away. Absolutely nothing wrong with it.

In communities where it is less common to see armed persons, it is understandable that some people may initially experience a slight degree of shock in seeing a weapon openly carried. But any reasonably intelligent person should be able to reason that the person carrying that weapon is, in all likelihood, not a threat. That is where the gon-control proponents
fail-they do not exercise the proper logic and common sense to reason that having a gun and using a gun are two entirely different things, and they act upon their knee-jerk reactions to what they perceive as unusual in their own limited experience.

9. Colion Noir: Open carry demonstrations [Video]

Baraka James sent me this:

From [VIDEO]

10. Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons: Guns do not cause crime, people do

Member Walter Jackson sent me this:


By AWR Hawkins
September 4, 2013

In the fall 2013 edition of the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons (JPandS), Jane M. Orient, M.D., takes apart the long standing gun control advocate arguments of many medical groups to show that guns do not cause crime, people do.

Orient looks at “advocacy campaigns” for “treating gun violence” that have been sponsored by the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American College of Physicians (ACP) and says these groups have fashioned gun violence as a “health problem” rather than a “crime problem.” In so doing, they have avoided the real causes of violence and to pursue federal funding for research from an advocacy perspective.

According to Orient, in many cases these and other medical groups have missed the real causes behind crime because their advocacy often comes with “a political agenda” attached.

Orient shows how this “public health approach” included supporting more gun control laws following the heinous crime at Sandy Hook Elementary, although “the latest and purportedly best study provides no support to the call for more restrictive gun laws as a means to prevent homicide.”

She also examines how various medical groups frame gun violence in terms of a safety issue. She focuses especially on the way such groups and their allies suggest the government is more worried about motor-vehicle safety than gun safety.

But Orient shows that such claims betray a misunderstanding of causal factors behind crime:

A major fallacy in the analogy between motor-vehicle crashes and shootings is that crashes are almost always accidental, and shootings are almost always intentional. Thus, in the former, the safety characteristics of cars and roads are highly pertinent, whereas in the latter the issue is why a shooter decides to pull the trigger.

Orient argues that the design of the car–including things like center of gravity in SUVs–are very important because the cause of a crash is often external to the driver. But when it comes to crime, it is the person rather than the gun who is to blame. In other words, the cause is internal. Thus, medical advocacy groups take the wrong approach when they place emphasis on “the guns themselves” instead of on “factors related to violent behavior, apart from mental illness.”

She bolsters this point by showing there is no real reduction in violent crime in certain countries where there has long been higher levels of gun control than in the U.S.

For example, Canada has had “strictly regulated handguns for more than a century” and required the registration of all handguns “since 1934.” Yet, although the northern-most U.S. states adjoining Canada “have a three to ten-fold higher prevalence of handgun ownership… no consistent differences were observed in violent homicide rates.”

In other words, in the absence of guns Canadians prone to violence were able to find other lethal means to use.

A 2007 study in the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy made this same point based on suicide numbers in England following gun bans there. According to the study, while gun control advocates were celebrating a drop in the number of firearms used in suicides, they overlooked the fact that suicides among “English youth” actually rose as a growing number of people simply found other ways to kill themselves.

The gun is not the culprit. Rather, the person intent on assaulting or killing another person is the culprit.

Guns do not cause crime, people do.

11. Obama enraged gun control couldn’t pass Democrat-led Senate

Member Bill Hine sent me this:

From The Washington Times:

By Emily Miller
September 2, 2013

Editor’s Note: The third of three articles excerpted from the new book “Emily Gets Her Gun But Obama Wants to Take Yours,” by Emily Miller, senior opinion editor at The Washington Times.

The kind of gun control laws that were making it so ridiculously difficult for me to get a gun for self-defense in D.C. have been out of reach for the anti-gun politicians on the national level since 1994.

Capitol Hill has been pro-gun since the Republican takeover of the House that year, in the wake of President Clinton signing the “assault weapons” ban. No major anti-Second Amendment legislation has passed Congress in 20 years.

President Obama may have thought he finally had his chance after the horrific tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School, but the will of the people blocked him, for now.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid never seemed to believe the legislation could pass, but he was pressured by the White House to bring it up for a vote. Sources familiar with the machinations behind the failed anti-gun bills in April 2013 believe Mr. Obama, Vice President Joseph Biden, and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg were in a rush to push the issue before the memory of Sandy Hook faded.

Politically, Mr. Obama wanted to appease his base by showing he was doing something on an issue that is a high priority for them. He also wanted to force Republicans to be on the record voting against his “common sense” gun control proposals   so he could use those votes against them to elect more Democrats to Congress in 2014.

The president also genuinely believes in limiting gun rights and didn’t want to pass up an opportunity   even if it was a long shot   to achieve it on the federal level. The publicity surrounding the push for federal gun control laws only helped their anti-gun campaigns in the states, where they had a better shot at actually getting legislation passed.

I interviewed Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus in June about Mr. Obama’s actions and reactions to the gun-control fight on Capitol Hill. “He overreached and overplayed his hand. Democrats in his own party sitting in red states weren’t going to walk off a plank on a flawed bill that wouldn’t even do what it said. The bill doesn’t even match up to his rhetoric.”

After the vote on the Manchin-Toomey amendment to expand background checks to private transactions failed, the president was enraged. Mr. Obama disregarded the possibility that pro-gun senators may simply believe in the Bill of Rights. Defiant, he said it was a “pretty shameful day for Washington” and promised “this effort is not over.”

The next day, Mr. Reid pulled the entire legislation from a vote. “I have spoken with the president. He and I agree that the best way to keep working toward passing a background check bill is to hit pause and freeze the background check bill where it is,” Mr. Reid said on the Senate floor. But we should make no mistake; this debate is not over. In fact, this fight is just beginning.”

The National Rifle Association views the background checks vote as a clear victory but believes that Mr. Obama and Mr. Reid are serious when they say the fight is not over.

“The Senate win was an important battle in a much longer war, and we fully expect them to make another run,” Christopher Cox, head of the NRA’s legislative arm, told me. “They are either going to tweak the language slightly to try to secure additional votes or they’re going to wait until the next tragedy   like they did with this one   to try to ram it through.”

Mr. Cox continued, “What’s unfortunate about all of this is that they are doing nothing for the overall goal of all Americans of making sure that criminals and people with mental health disorders who are dangers to themselves and others don’t have access to a firearm.”

Nevertheless, Mr. Priebus said that Mr. Obama’s drama in the Rose Garden and swearing up and down that the legislation would save lives affected public sentiment. “He has mastered the art of having people judge him by the things he says, rather than what he does. And he’s good at it, and that’s our problem.”

12. Mayor Bloomberg is the best friend of 2nd Amendment advocates

Member James Durso emailed me this:

From The NY Post:

By Emily Miller
September 1, 2013

No one has done more for gun rights in the past two years than Mayor Bloomberg.

Oh, he didn’t mean to. Bloomberg has used his political clout and a significant amount of his fortune to try to chip away at the Second Amendment. He is never more self-righteous and condescending than when he talks about guns.

Yet at every step, he’s failed. But more than that, Bloomberg’s presence actively strengthens the NRA’s position. He’s sparked fundraising booms for politicians he disagrees with and may wound Democrats in 2014. Meanwhile, he’s pushed gun sales to record heights.

Bloomberg’s most high-profile campaign was spending $12 million to get the Senate to vote his way on expanding background checks for gun purchases. After Sen. Harry Reid was forced to pull the gun control bill, Bloomberg went ballistic. His shocking rhetoric indicated the type of attack ads he would be funding leading up to the 2014 election. “Children lost. They are going to die and the criminals won. I think that’s the only way to phrase it. This is a disgrace,” he told reporters on April 18.

By the weekend, Bloomberg’s group Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG), had organized protests with the theme “Shame on You” at the congressional offices of the senators it determined to be vulnerable for voting against the expanded background checks amendment.

Typical was his campaign against Republican Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire. He spent more than $2 million on TV ads in New Hampshire and neighboring Boston. Ayotte, who voted to improve the National Instant Criminal Background Check System instead of the flawed background-check bill, refused to bow to the pressure.

Bloomberg’s deliberate misleading of the public was obvious from the content of the ads. In one, a police chief named Scott Knight, says that Ayotte is “making us less safe.” Unmentioned is the fact that he’s actually the police chief of Chaska, Minn., far from New Hampshire.

While Ayotte’s poll numbers dipped in the immediate aftermath of the ads airing, they rose back up soon after. “I don’t see any effect on Kelly,” GOP party chairman, Reince Priebus, told me in mid-June. “What is the state motto? ‘Live free or die.’ ”

Bloomberg also goes after Democrats, much to the consternation of Sen. Chuck Schumer. His attacks on Republicans don’t stick, but he could get enough liberals to vote against moderate Dems to flip their races – and the Senate itself in 2014.

Unlike most elected officials, Bloomberg doesn’t even pretend that there’s a wall between his official and political activities. City Hall employees have been caught lobbying for gun control in other states.

13. A New Yorker’s view of gun control

Board Member Dale Welch sent me this:


By Tom Purcell
August 31, 2013

During my last visit to New York City, I stumbled into an unexpected discussion about its restrictive gun polices.

The discussion occurred after I ducked into a coffee shop. The place was empty except for three transit employees.

“I don’t know why the kid shot me,” said one of the men. “But I got myself some protection now.”

Curious, I introduced myself and asked the fellow about his story.
“One day three years ago,” he said, “I’m sitting in my Brooklyn neighborhood in my 2008 Lincoln, eating a sandwich.

“This kid comes up to the passenger side and tells me how nice my car is. A lot of people compliment my ride, so I think nothing of it.

“But then he tells me to give him the keys. I think he’s kidding, so I laugh. He pulls out a gun – a 9-mm handgun, I think.

“I tell the kid I don’t want no trouble. I open the door to start getting out. But then I make a big mistake. When he reaches through the window to grab my keys, I grab the keys before he can get them.

“He says, ‘I’m gonna pop you, man!’ I look into his eyes and they’re black as death. Then BOOM!

“The next thing I know, I wake hooked up to all kind of wires in the hospital and the doctor is telling me how lucky I am. The bullet hit me in the right shoulder and passed out the left armpit – just missing my heart.

“That was three years ago, but I’m OK now. I guess it wasn’t my time to go.”

I was spellbound by his story and the matter-of-fact way he told it, but his story grew more fascinating when he told me how he now is breaking the law to protect himself and his family.

“In New York,” he said, “the gun laws are so strict, the majority of people who have them are the criminals. Maybe if you’re a small-business owner or have some other valid reason for protecting yourself, you might get a permit to carry. But if you’re a regular guy like me, forget about it.

“But I live on the Brooklyn-Queens border, and in that part of town there’s only one way to protect yourself – you got to let the punks know you’re packing heat.

“So I bought myself a street gun that I carry with me everywhere. Lots of the decent people in my neighborhood are carrying illegal guns. It’s the only thing we can do.”

The fellow knew what he was talking about.

A Cato Institute study found that 60 percent of criminals would not attack if they knew a potential victim were carrying a gun.

In New York City, though, it’s the criminals, not the innocent civilians, who are often armed. Of the estimated 400,000 illegal guns that flood the city, most are in the hands of the criminals.

Thus, if you can’t get a permit to carry – which is difficult to do in New York – and you choose to arm yourself for personal protection, you become a criminal.

“What if you use an illegal weapon to shoot someone who tries to shoot you or steal your car?” I asked the transit worker. “Won’t you face charges yourself?”

“Maybe so,” he said, “but at least I’ll be around to do the explaining.”

14. The Second Amendment and “weapons of war”

Member James Vesce sent me this in response to “VA-ALERT: VCDL member harassed by Hopewell PD”:

John Cahoon’s letter in the Roanoke Times actually falls short of making one of the points that should be made.

The argument that the Second Amendment doesn’t apply to “advanced weapons of war” like “assault rifles” with high capacity magazines falls short because it ignores the historical context of the weapons used by colonial forces, protected by the 2nd Amendment.

The weapons protected by the 2nd Amendment, as used by colonists in our revolution, were in fact more technologically advanced and more lethal than the weapons used by the British military. The British used smoothbore muskets. The colonists used long guns with rifled barrels, capable of accurate fire at longer range, giving them a tactical advantage in battles like Kings Mountain because the colonists’ weapons were more technologically advanced “weapons of war”.

No wonder the British confiscated civilian weapons in Boston.

No wonder the colonists reclaimed them.

15. So they’re banning gun safety classes in the name of gun safety?

Member Paul Henick emailed me this:

Thank goodness it’s California.  That saves me from even trying to understand it.


By David Hardy
August 31, 2013

The mentality we have to deal with

For some time, Pierce College (a Los Angeles community college) had offered firearm safety courses. Now, the trustees of the college have have ended the course by banning all guns, including unloaded ones, from all campuses. The explanations given:

“The one thing we wanted to prevent was Pierce College being the Wild Wild West,” said Scott Svonkin, a trustee with the Los Angeles Community College District, author of the anti-gun resolution passed this month.

“By preventing guns on campus, I wanted to prevent people who took the class from shooting a horse or cow on campus.”


“Proponents of the ban emphasized they weren’t against guns or gun ownership. They said it was simply unsafe to have guns in the presence of thousands of students on college campuses, adding that even an unloaded weapon seen from outside a classroom could spark panic, a 911 call or a police SWAT response.”

But ….

“The district’s new policy permits only fake weapons used during a theatrical performance or real cops with guns.”

16. Gun-free zones at Denny’s

Member Rollin Reisinger sent me this:

Several months ago VA-ALERT reported on the absurd behavior of a gun hating Denny’s manager who asked off duty police to abide by the posted gunbuster sign. Though corporate backtracked on excluding police due to the bad publicity, they maintained their policy of all locations being posted gun-free zones.

Here’s how it’s working out for them:

From KHOU – Houston, TX:

From 12NewsNow – Houston, TX:

Three armed robbers apparently failed to notice that a Houston Denny’s had been declared a gun-free zone when they entered the restaurant and began pointing their guns at patrons in a takeover-style robbery. After robbing both the establishment and the patrons, the robbers became increasingly angry, despite having stolen the property they were after, at which point Robert Placette heroically placed himself between the robbers and terrified children. For this, he was shot dead, though, due to his sacrifice, the children were unharmed. The robbers then proceeded to shoot an employee attempting to flee the deadly scene.

With no guns in the hands of law-abiding patrons, the best response anyone could offer was a noble act of self-sacrifice.

The gun haters at Denny’s corporate believe that a man of such
character, who would lose his life shielding children from the line of fire is incapable of being trusted with a gun.

Gun owners need to stay far, far away from Denny’s, and never eat there again until corporate removes every gunbuster sign from every location and publicly apologizes for the destructive consequences of their misguided policy.

I think back to something Col. Jeff Cooper said, “One cannot legislate the maniacs off the street … these maniacs can only be shut down by an armed citizenry. Indeed bad things can happen in nations where the citizenry is armed, but not as bad as those which seem to be threatening our disarmed citizenry in this country at this time.”

Denny’s attempt to legislate the maniacs out of their restaurant ended in disaster.

17. Colorado Democrat: Legislature, not guns, will keep you safe

“…firearms ownership is redundant because the state Legislature keeps citizens safe from harm.”

Yeah – don’t carry a gun or even dial 9-1-1, instead just call the Colorado House Majority Leader Dickey Lee Hullinghorst to come save you!

Another Democrat in leadership who wants the Democrats to be the Party of Gun Control.

The Peter Principle is alive and well in Colorado.

Member Bill Hine sent me this:

From The Washington Times:

By Valerie Richardson
September 4, 2013

DENVER – Another Colorado Democrat has stoked the state’s raging gun-control debate by challenging the argument that guns are needed for self-defense.

Colorado House Majority Leader Dickey Lee Hullinghorst said in an interview on YouTube last week that firearms ownership is redundant because the state Legislature keeps citizens safe from harm.

“As a woman, I have the right not to carry a gun and to feel safe on the streets, and that’s what we provide for in the state Legislature is for all of us in the state of Colorado to feel safe on the streets without having to carry a gun,” said Mrs. Hullinghorst on “The Tim Caffrey Show.”

She also took a swipe at gun owners.

“The thought that the only way we can protect ourselves is to wield our own weapon is completely absurd and an argument that I absolutely discount as frivolous,” Mrs. Hullinghorst said.

Her comments came as Democrats face a strong backlash against the Colorado Legislature’s sweeping gun-control legislation passed earlier this year. Early voting already has begun in the Sept. 10 recall elections of Democratic state Sens. Angela Giron and John Morse over their votes in March in favor of the bills.

State Sen. Greg Brophy, a candidate for the 2014 GOP gubernatorial nomination, said Mrs. Hullinghorst’s stance “speaks volumes about the Democratic agenda on guns.”

“Unbelievably naive from a citizen. Absolutely dangerous from an elected official and leader of the Democratic Party in Colorado,” Mr. Brophy told Colorado Peak Politics.

This wasn’t the first time state Democrats have tangled with gun owners over the self-defense issue. Democratic state Sen. Evie Hudak touched off an outcry in March when she told a rape victim that it was unrealistic to expect that she would have been able to fend off her attacker with a gun, saying, “Statistics are not on your side.”

“Chances are that if you had had a gun, then he would have been able to get that from you and possibly use it against you,” Mrs. Hudak said at a committee hearing.

The Democratic-controlled Legislature passed three gun bills in March without any Republican votes. Signed into law by Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper, the bills restrict ammunition magazine capacity to 15 rounds; mandate background checks for all gun sales, including temporary transfers; and require gun owners to pay for their background checks.

VA-ALERT is a project of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc.
(VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization
dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to
Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right.

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