Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence presumes to tell people how to worship

What struck me about that press release was not the over-the-top emotionalism of the rhetoric, which is, after all, fairly typical for citizen disarmament propaganda. No, what floored me was the arrogance inherent to telling people that they're worshipping "wrongly," and that their church service is "immoral."

It seems that along with the right to keep and bear arms, even freedom of religion offends OCAGV. [More]
Today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Area gun range fights for survival

That, I believe, is a significant part of the motivation for this kind of harassment. Resistance to legislative attacks on gun rights is still such that such attacks have a long road to hoe. The gun haters can be patient, though, and plan for years in the future. Shut down enough gun ranges, and there will eventually be fewer and fewer peaceable practicioners of responsible gun ownership. Eventually, the numbers will be so few that the gun banning legislative agenda will meet no effective resistance.

That's the goal. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.

Friday, June 26, 2009

New Jersey to implement rationing of rights

Unless I'm missing a state or two somewhere, that makes New Jersey the fourth to pass this kind of law (or fifth, if you count South Carolina, which repealed its version of the law in 2004, after finding it to be ineffective at reducing violent crime). The others that still have such a law are California (no surprise there, with it's Brady Campaign Number One Tyranny Rating), Maryland (again, no surprise, with Maryland ranking almost as "high" as California), and Virginia. The fact that Virginia is one of only three (soon to be four) states with such a law is probably a surprise to some. Virginia, after all, is blamed for having "lax gun laws" that contribute toward it being part of the so-called "Iron Pipeline" of guns that end up illegally in places like New York City. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner.

By the way, I know that lately, the blog has had little aside from blurbs advertising my GRE columns. That's not a long term situation--I've just been a bit too busy for both lately. I expect to get back to writing original material here very soon.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

'Gun free' Chicago is bleeding out

Ten to fifteen shootings and stabbings every night, at one hospital? Baghdad might be safer than that.

This is the city with the most restrictive gun laws in the nation. All guns must be registered--and re-registered annually--with the Chicago Police Department. The vast majority of semi-automatic firearms, and all handguns, are "unregisterable" (and thus illegal), unless they were already registered in 1982 (and every year since then).

And yet the city is bleeding to death. [More]
Today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner looks at the irony of hospitals in America's most "gun free" (according to the law) city being unable to keep enough blood on hand to treat victims of violence. Please give it a look.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Restrictive gun laws violate civil rights

That essay was written by Temple University Law Professor David Kairys, who, interestingly enough, specializes in civil rights law, and is known for fighting racial discrimination.

He is, presumably, an educated man, and an opponent of racial prejudice. Why, then, is he in favor of policies that have the goal of disproportionately disarming the very people whose rights he supposedly champions?

Sounds like someone who needs to watch "No Guns for Negroes." Perhaps I'll buy him a copy. [More]

That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope ya' like.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

I wonder if he says 'of the people' in the book

The Brady Campaign is busily pushing Brady Bunch Vice President for Law and Policy Dennis Henigan's new book, "Lethal Logic: Exploding the Myths that Paralyze American Gun Policy."

June 26 is the first anniversary of the Supreme Court’s DC v. Heller decision. It is also the official publication date of an important new book by a tireless crusader in the fight against gun violence in America.

The author, Dennis Henigan, has long been one of the nation’s most prominent advocates for stronger gun laws, appearing dozens of times on national television shows, including 60 Minutes, The Today Show, Nightline, Larry King Live, and Dateline NBC. Henigan founded the Brady Center’s Legal Action Project twenty years ago to represent gun violence victims in lawsuits against the gun industry and his legal team has recovered millions of dollars in damages for victims against gun manufacturers and sellers.
As far as I'm concerned, what is most notable about Henigan is his . . . creative editing of the Second Amendment:

video

Yeah--that's the guy I trust to give me the straight story about gun laws.

The Brady Bunch press release announcing the book quotes a few parts, including some wisdom from that famous sage, Ozzy Osbourne:
“Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” Henigan counters with Ozzy Osbourn’s [sic] take on that: “If that’s the case, why do we give people guns when they go to war? Why not just send the people?”
Perhaps someone should ask Ozzy the reverse question--if guns do kill, and people don't, why send the people, rather than just the guns?

Another bit of Henigan's "debunking":
“But what you really want [is to ban all guns.]” Henigan explains that for the gun lobby, “the gun debate needs to be a debate about banning all guns. The slippery slope argument is the NRA’s primary means of achieving this goal.”
Note that Henigan doesn't actually refute the slippery slope argument, he just claims that the entire logical basis for fighting restrictive gun laws depends on it (notice that every time a restrictive gun law passes, the citizen disarmament advocates call it a "good first step"?). Actually, of course, that's not even remotely true, either. If I thought there were no slippery slope, I would fight against all gun laws, because they're all unconstitutional, immoral, and utterly incapable of serving their stated purpose of stopping violence.

Henigan has to be one of the most unqualified people I can think of for talking about either gun policy or "logic."

VPC inadvertently exposes myth of gun control as 'public safety'

Never mind that, though, my point is that Sugarmann claims that all the gun laws on the books are apparently not "safety measures."
Yet these are sales standards, not product safety standards.
Now wait a second--you mean those tens of thousands of gun laws aren't about safety? I agree, of course, but I didn't expect the forcible citizen disarmament cheerleaders to come out and admit it. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.

So much for me being back on schedule--I'm many hours behind, and working frantically to catch up.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Gun rights advocacy not responsible for killings

Crazy, violent, evil people do crazy, violent, evil things, with or without hearing "extemist rhetoric." All three of the perpetrators of the above mentioned murders had some rather serious issues that had nothing to do with anything they heard from Bill O'Reilly or the NRA. Now, the Bob Herberts of the world are trying to claim that simply issuing warnings about impending attempts to attack that right that shall not be infringed is immoral and irresponsible.

That sounds kinda familiar. Perhaps we should call him "Supreme Leader Herbert." [More]
Today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.

My new computer is here, my week from hell is over (just don't even ask), and I expect to be back on my regular schedule now.

Friday, June 12, 2009

When gun bans are not enough--the war on . . . pocket knives?

By the way, a discussion of the illegality of switchblades in the first place, and how to reconcile such a ban with shall not be infringed, is beyond the scope of this article, but it's a discussion worth having.

I realize that this is not the "St. Louis Knife Rights Examiner," but consider what a rule change banning 80% of the folding knives currently on the market implies about what the federal government will do with regard to guns. [More]
Today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. If they can do it to knives, they can do it to guns. Please give it a look.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

DHS 'right-wing extemist' report--outrageous before Holocaust Museum shooting, and still outrageous afterward

As David Codrea discusses today, the statists have wasted little time in pointing to the Holocaust Museum shooter as vindication of the now infamous Department of Homeland Security "right-wing extremist" report.

"Does Holocaust Shooting Validate Homeland Security Report?" asks Ed O'Keefe in The Washington Post.

We talked about that report here. Now, with an almost "I told you so" glee, outlets like Politico are propagating a meme:
“I think this latest round of killing once again shows how ridiculous the criticism from the right of the Department of Homeland Security report was. That whole brouhaha was absurd,” said Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center...

“We felt the DHS report was pretty right on,” said Deborah Lauter of the Anti-Defamation League.
The Holocaust Museum shooter was a dyed in the wool, hate mongering bigot (as well as a federal felon).

The DHS report, on the other hand, while it mentioned genuine threats, such as neo-nazi vermin like Von Brunn, cast a much wider net than that--including military veterans, gun rights advocates, and advocates of secure borders. The report, in other words, equated devotees of the Constitution with self-proclaimed "race warriors."

The conclusion that can be drawn from this atrocity is the futility of trying to stop violence with more gun laws. Von Brunn, being a federal felon, committed another felony by mere virtue of possessing a gun. Even without such a prohibition, carrying a rifle into a Washington D.C. museum would very definitely be illegal.

Evil people commit evil acts, have done so since long before the invention of firearms, and will no doubt continue to do so for as long as humanity exists. For such people, there are few sure cures. Here's one (photo courtesy of Oleg Volk):

Self-defense, the UN, and the 2nd Amendment

Both Congress and the Obama administration have appeared, so far, to be in headlong retreat from the kinds of citizen disarmament laws they have made clear they would dearly love to pass, supposedly in deference to political realities that for the moment, make such attacks on the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms too difficult. Groups like the Brady Campaign are growing increasingly strident about that.

With Obama's vocal support for CIFTA, though, I cannot help but wonder if that "retreat" is merely a feint--perhaps the real goal is an international end run around the Second Amendment--and possibly, self-defense itself. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look, and tell a friend.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Helmke's growing discontent with the Obama administration

I've written a lot (One hundred days in: citizen disarmament lobby is getting restless, Brady Campaign rhetoric then and now: what a difference six months makes, and More disappointment for the Brady Campaign) about the Brady Campaign's growing impatience with the Obama administration's reticence, so far, with regard to the radical agenda of forcible citizen disarmament favored by the Brady Bunch. I'm starting to think it's becoming quite a sore point with Mr. Helmke, because last week, he expressed his disappointment in, and impatience with, the Obama administration yet again.

Yes, the president has a lot on his plate. Yet not only did then-Senator Obama contemplate this heavy workload, he campaigned for it. As a presidential candidate, he famously said last September, "It's going to be part of the president's job to be able to deal with more than one thing at once."

Keeping this in mind, there is an immediate economic and public health crisis in America that, so far, both the president and Congress have chosen to ignore: approximately 12,000 gun homicides, 17,000 gun suicides, 650 accidental gun deaths, plus 70,000 non-fatal gun injuries occur every year in this country.

Yet rather than propose concrete action that makes it harder for dangerous people to get firearms -- while still respecting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners -- all Washington can seem to muster after high-profile shootings are "thoughts and prayers" for the victims and their families.

For his part, the president has also included sincere expressions of "deep sadness" at these tragic losses -- though without any call to change any of our policies to prevent those losses.
Paul then goes on to list several tragic shootings that had a high enough profile to warrant public statements from Obama (statements that clearly did not go far enough, in Helmke's view).

Interestingly, one of the incidents Helmke mentioned was the tragedy at Camp Victory, Iraq, in which an unhinged soldier suddenly turned his gun on eight fellow soldiers (killing five), before being taken into custody (Helmke erroneously states that the killer then committed suicide--he did not).

As with the other shootings about which Obama expressed sadness, Helmke claims that "being 'deeply saddened' at gun violence is not enough"--that Obama should join the Brady Campaign in attempting to exploit these murders in furtherance of the agenda to disarm people who have not killed anyone. So what does Helmke want--soldiers to be disarmed?

Anyway, back to Helmke:
Yet up to now, President Obama has been unwilling to do much more than express his deep sadness and send his thoughts and prayers to victims and their families in response to shooting after shooting in this country, repeating gun lobby rhetoric that we should just "enforce the laws on the books," and sidestepping the fact that there are only a handful of Federal laws which make it harder for dangerous people to get guns.

He has yet to offer even a hint of his commitment after the Northern Illinois killings "to do whatever it takes" to keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of dangerous people.
I have little doubt that the Obama administration will eventually show it's true colors, and make a concerted effort to pass more draconian gun laws. In the meantime, though, it's fun as hell to observe the increasing stridency of Helmke and friends.

Celebrating gun rights in the enemy's back yard

This year's speaker should be no less compelling. Attendees will hear Ralph W. Conner, a long-time civil rights activist with the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). If readers seem to remember having seen that name recently, it was probably in National Gun Rights Examiner David Codrea's announcement of the superb "No Guns for Negroes" DVD, made and released by Jews for Preservation of Firearms Ownership (JPFO), and which featured Mr. Conner. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Sorry to have dropped off the net for the past week. I'm not sure how regularly I'll be posting for a little bit longer. My computer problems are still some way from being resolved, and now I have some health issues, as well--nothing serious, or long-term, I hope, but very inconvenient. I just started antibiotic pills the approximate size of a 230 grain .45 ACP--hopefully they'll be as effective on my bug as Sgt. York's .45 slugs were on the Kaiser's men.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Computer issues--light posting ahead

I might be a bit quieter than usual for a bit--computers have suddenly decided they hate me (and I'm starting to hate 'em back). Anyway--have some electronic things to sort out--didn't want anyone to think I'm in some BATFE gulag (yet).

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Vote to override TN self-defense in restaurants veto expected today

The Tennessee House, and possibly the Senate, are expected to vote today on whether or not to override Governor Phil Bredersen's override of a bill that would end mandated defenselessness in restaurants that serve alcohol. The Memphis Commercial-Appeal editorial staff is busily soiling their panties over the expected override.

The Tennessee House is expected to vote today on an effort to override Gov. Phil Bredesen's veto of a bill allowing handgun carry permit holders to carry guns into restaurants where alcohol is served.

It is the first of two opportunities Tennesseeans will have to register their concerns about efforts by members of the General Assembly to loosen the strings on where permit holders can bear arms. Senate supporters also will mount an override effort.
Never mind that the bill would change nothing about the legality of drinking while carrying a firearm, never mind that bars and restaurants will still be able to prohibit carrying firearms (if doing so makes them "feel safe"), and never mind that Bredersen promised to sign such a bill, in order to gain the NRA's support.

Given the fact that in Tennessee, only a simple majority in each chamber is required to override a veto, chances are good that the override vote will succeed, especially given the amount of support the bill received in the initial votes (70-26 66-23--sorry, had some bad information--in the House, and 26-7 in the Senate--well over the 50 House votes and 17 Senate votes necessary for an override).
The Tennessee General Assembly seems eager and poised to make Tennessee a more dangerous place
Ah--if only Tennessee legislators understood the "safety" inherent to defenselessness.

Update: House override vote successful--actually picking up three votes. On to the Senate.

Update II: The Senate vote is apparently expected tomorrow.

The Tiller murder, and the fragility of liberty

Got that? One murder, committed by one nut who, apparently, was acting alone, is being cited as justification to subject literally millions of Americans to heightened scrutiny as potential "terrorists."

I have no interest in entering the abortion debate, and I have no objection to portraying Dr. Tiller's murder as being as heinous as any other murder. That's not what this is about. What it is about is the attempt to exploit the evil act of one man as justification to chill the freedoms of people who have committed no crimes. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.

Some may have noticed that I'm posting later in the day than is my usual habit. The reason for that is the death of the computer I generally did this on. While I wait for its replacement (which might be another few weeks), I have to make do with a less than satisfactory ad-hoc arrangement.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Why didn't I think of this?

A bit of a departure for me--this has less to do with gun rights than with gun . . . stuff that I find interesting.

Enter the Blanklock Muzzleloader Firing System:

I developed the blanklock device primarily as an alternative means to fire a muzzleloading firearm. The use of a blank cartridge replaces both the primer (percussion cap or primer) and the gunpowder. The blank cartridges (or power loads) to use are commonly available at hardware stores for use in power actuated nail guns. This system is ideal for light hunting, target practice, and firearms training, especially where low recoil and low report, and clean operation is desired. It can also be used to remove a stuck projectile from the bore when other methods fail to do so.

For use in re-enacting, stage or screen play use, a blank is used without any projectile in the bore. The loudness of the report can be adjusted by selecting whatever power level blank is desired. Level one is the lowest and level four is the highest commonly available in .22 caliber. Sometimes fives can be found. Velocity performance depends on factors such as caliber and bore length of the gun used as well as power load level and the weight of the projectile. Chronograph results on average using round ball and level 5 blanks are as follows; .50 caliber- 650 fps. .45 caliber- 900 fps. .32 caliber- 1400 fps

This unit is designed to fit many right hand side hammer muzzleloading guns with the drum & nipple breach. Do not use this unit on the left side of a barrel; the vent will not be in alignment with the bore. For some this is a Do-it-yourself project. Others may wish to use the services of a competent gunsmith. A gun with the bolster type breach can be used, but requires machine shop work to mill off the side of the bolster and drill and tap for the blanklock device. The thread size is 10 X 1.25 MM. The drum & nipple type guns are a lot easier to convert to blank operation. Among the brands of available guns that will work include CVA, Traditions, and Jukar all of which use the 10X 1.25 MM thread size.

For the time being the use of the blanklock system is with the blank as the sole propellant that is without any added gunpowder. The pressure ratings of barrels by different manufacturers will vary according to metallurgy, production methods, barrel dimensions and caliber. Pressure and strain tests need to be done before the use of black powder or appropriate substitute will be deemed safe. If the gun is to be used anyway with black powder or black powder substitute then use only level one power loads. Those who must experiment should use good sense and go easy.
Pretty clever. Click on the above link for the full description, with pics, and ordering information.

Actually, there are gun rights implications for this. By federal law, and in many states, black powder muzzleloaders can be bought and sold without any legal hoops to jump through, as can the blanks and bullets (with a bullet mold, a casting furnace, and some lead wheel weights, you could make also make your own bullets). Something for us "right-wing extremists" to keep in mind, especially if petty tyrants like Rep. Peter King ("R"-NY) get their way.

Not an ideal arm for defending liberty, but beats the hell out of a pointy stick.

Record numbers of Missourians preparing for armed self-defense

It's a jungle out there, and likely to become yet more savage before it gets better. Armed citizens, though, have an exemption to the survival of the fittest rule that generally reigns supreme in nature. Armed, trained, and determined citizens can prevail against predators who are larger, younger, stronger, and more merciless than they are.

They can, and they must. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope to see you there.

Monday, June 01, 2009

If the Brady Bunch supports Sotomayor, America should not

I saw today, without surprise, that the Brady Campaign is happy about the Sotomayor SCOTUS nomination.

The nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court appears to be a positive one for those committed to reducing gun violence in this country. Judge Sotomayor’s legal opinions have shown a strong respect for precedent in upholding federal and state gun laws, while her background and experience promise to bring a real world, personal understanding of the effects of gun violence that will be welcome on our nation’s highest Court.
Hmm--"a real world, personal understanding of the effects of gun violence"--I guess that's the kind of "empathy" that now apparently trumps adherence to the Constitution.
Respect for precedent and understanding the importance of strong gun laws in the real world will be especially
important . . .
In two consecutive sentences, Helmke praises Sotomayor's "respect for precedent." No mention of the merest possibility that the "precedent" might be wrong--if a draconian gun law has been upheld in the past, it should always be upheld. Hey--speaking of precedent, there seems to be vastly more precedent for tossing lawsuits against gun manufacturers out of court, for lack of merit, than there is for allowing such suits to proceed. Don't you just love precedent, Paul?

He must, because he brings it up again, to start the next paragraph.
As a judge on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Judge Sotomayor has shown a respect for precedent that has narrowly interpreted the Second Amendment . . .
Ah yes--"respect for [the] precedent" of counting 10% of the Bill of Rights as largely meaningless.
. . . a far contrast to the activist majority in the Heller case, which sidestepped seventy year old precedent in finding a new individual right to have handguns in the home.
Now wait a second, Paul--I thought you liked the Heller decision.
Now that the Court has struck down the District's ban on handguns, while making it clear that the Constitution allows for reasonable restrictions on access to dangerous weapons, this 'slippery slope' argument is gone.
And . . .
The "slippery slope," however, is now gone. The U.S. Supreme Court took it off the table Thursday in their D.C. v. Heller opinion. Government is now barred from "taking away" the guns of law-abiding Americans.

Because of this Court decision, proposals such as Brady background checks on all gun sales, limiting bulk sales of handguns, restricting access to military-style assault weapons, and strengthening the power of law enforcement to shut down corrupt gun dealers can now be debated on their merits without them being seen as a "first step on the road to gun confiscation."

While the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the District's ban on handguns, they also made it clear that the Constitution allows for reasonable restrictions on access to firearms. As Justice Scalia said, "the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited." When the dust settles, most Americans -- and I believe even most in the gun violence prevention movement -- will come to see that there are some positives in this decision.

Elected officials will no longer be able to use a mistaken, absolutist misreading of the Second Amendment as an excuse to do nothing about gun violence in our country. Politicians can't hide behind the Second Amendment anymore.
And . . .
In the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling on the Second Amendment, it's been my hope that it might be easier to find some common ground on steps to help reduce gun violence in this country now that the extremes of the gun control debate (gun confiscation on the one hand and the absolutist "any person, any place, any gun" on the other hand) have been rejected by the Court.
Make up your mind, Paul.

Defense Secretary Gates proposes getting 'tough' if diplomacy fails--gun owners way ahead of him

Granted, much of "The Great American Rearming," undoubtedly, is simply preemptive--a response to concerns that these items may soon become difficult, if not impossible, to acquire, and to have a supply on hand in preparation for that eventuality.

Some of it, though, is a manifestation of people preparing for the possibility of having to use that lifesaving, liberty-preserving firepower--of having to use the Second Amendment for its real purpose. In other words, American gun owners have been "getting tough," as Defense Secretary Gates would put it, for over six months, and the reason for doing so is pretty much the same as in Korea--it's the prudent response to a serious threat. [More]
That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope you like it.

I've decided to discontinue my old practice of providing links to all my fellow GREs here. Doing so saves some time and effort, and I still provide the links over at my GRE page--which is where I'm trying to get y'all to go, anyway.