By Dave Workman
When it comes to guns in America, two things are clearly carved in granite:
Gun owners and rights organizations typically have the facts, the laws and the Constitution on their side. Places like “Justfacts.com” are loaded with useful — and sometimes less useful because it is dated — information that drives anti-gunners nuts.
Gun control/prohibition activists and their political allies have money and raw emotion on their side, with no small amount of support from the media. They have Everytown for Gun Safety, Giffords, the Alliance for Gun Responsibility, the Brady Campaign and other anti-gun resources, along with several billionaires providing unlimited funds, which drives gun rights activists equally crazy.
Heading into the fall election cycle, with important mid-term contests looming, the gun control crowd definitely wants Democrats to take over on Capitol Hill for a variety of reasons. They include derailing President Trump’s efforts to appoint conservative, pro-rights judges to the federal courts; preventing the passage of pro-Second Amendment legislation, and even starting impeachment proceedings.
And the gun control debate seems a surefire way to get Democrat voters, including brand new voting-age teens freshly recalling their activism of the spring, to the polls in November to pull it off. This is a major reason why anti-gunners want this argument to continue, and maybe reach a fever pitch by the first week of November.
Now pay attention, because there might be a test later.
According to Factcheck.org, the “average firearm mortality rate” in the eight states and District of Columbia where so-called “universal background checks” are required is 9 per 100,000 (or at least it was in 2016, the most recent year for which data is available). However, Colorado, Oregon and the District have rates higher than the national average of 11.8 per 100,000, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But other states without the “universal background check” requirement have lower rates, too. So, the implication that states with invasive background checks consistently have fewer gun-related murders than states without such checks is a bit misleading.
The Factcheck.org report notes that the data “doesn’t mean that universal background check laws have caused lower mortality rates. A causal relationship between such state laws and firearm deaths hasn’t been established by researchers.”
Another tidbit from Factcheck.org is that the number of stolen guns reported to the FBI has steadily risen, from just under 140,000 in 2005 to 246,968 in 2017. Translation: There are a lot of hot guns floating around out there on which no background checks are conducted when they change hands, so such checks just might be getting less relevant. This also suggests that pro-rights advocates have been correct when they say that criminals will get around the law to get their hands on a firearm.
Last fall, the Texas Tribune and University of Texas did a joint survey to learn the following:
Thirty-eight percent of respondents think we would all be safer if more people carried guns, but 41 percent said we would be less safe. Among Democrats, a whopping 75 percent think we’d be less safe and only a pitiful 5 percent think we would be safer.
Shifted around to the Republican perspective, 66 percent think we’d be safer and only 13 percent think we would be less safe. Among independents, 45 percent say we would be safer and 31 percent think it would be less safe.
There is no precise data on the number of citizens packing iron legally, although estimates run as high as 16-to-16.5 million.
Still, more than half of registered voters think gun laws should be tighter, and when it comes to Democrats, 86 percent want tougher gun laws. Fifty-one percent of Republicans would leave the laws alone, the study said.
There was something else. Twenty-four percent think the mental health system is to blame for mass shootings and 21 percent think current gun laws are at fault.
Enter Alan Gottlieb, Chairman Of The CCRBA
Following the mass shootings at high schools in Florida and Texas, Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, asked a question that nobody on the gun control side rushed to answer.
After those tragedies, he noted, “Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety was quick to push its gun control agenda, and the Alliance for Gun Responsibility was asking for donations to ‘take a stand…against the gun lobby.’ When was the last time either of these groups demanded swift justice and certainty of punishment for the actual perpetrators?
“Time after time,” he added, “with endless fund raising appeals and inflammatory rhetoric, we’ve seen these anti-rights lobbying groups immediately try to shift blame to the NRA, or the Second Amendment, or the firearms industry, or some mythical loophole in the law. But they never seem to point their fingers at the culprit, and we think it’s time for the American public to ask why?”
Gottlieb is currently up to his armpits in gun control battles out in Washington and Oregon. Anti-gunners are pushing an “assault weapon” ban in Oregon, while in Washington there’s an initiative to raise the minimum age for buying a semi-auto rifle or shotgun to 21. The Washington measure also mandates so-called “enhanced background checks” (whatever they are), a 10-day waiting period for semi-auto purchases, and they want to criminalize “unsafe” storage of guns if they are used in crimes by people who should not have had access.
About the gun prohibitionists pushing these measures, Gottlieb observed, “They are so preoccupied with demonizing gun owners and eroding the Second Amendment that they have either lost sight of the goal of taking dangerous or deranged criminals off the street, or that was never their intention in the first place. If all they can do is blame innocent citizens while diverting attention from murderous monsters, then it is time to ask these people just whose side they are on.”
Rare Fatal Cougar Attack Has People Packing
The recent fatal cougar attack in Washington State (not far from my home, actually) has had an interesting after-effect.
It appears an increasing interest in firearms for the back country has sprung up among some folks. The accompanying image of yours truly was snapped on the day after a mountain lion killed S.J. Brooks and injured Isaac Sederbaum as they were riding mountain bikes up a gravel road in the foothills east of Seattle. Indeed, we were cutting firewood only a few miles from the deadly attack, as the crow flies.
And that is indeed a revolver on my hip. Up in the Northwest, people are occasionally reminded that as soon as one leaves the pavement and sidewalks and civilization, there are things out there with teeth.
In my case, there’s always a sidearm within reach, even when the chainsaw is running. While it’s gotten some unwanted attention in the past, lately anyone we’ve encountered seems to understand why a gun in the hand is better than a forest ranger on the cell phone…if there happens to be any coverage, which frequently there is not.
New From Sig Sauer
Sig Sauer has introduced premium rifle and pistol ammunition components for handloaders.
According to a company spokesman, handgun cases are available primed or unprimed in he following calibers: .380 ACP, 9mm, .357 SIG, .38 Special, .357 Magnum, .40 S&W, 10mm Auto and .45 ACP.
These new Elite Performance Ammunition cases come ready to load; no initial sizing is necessary. They are packaged in bags of 100.
Rifle cases in certain calibers are also available, in 50-count bags.
That Was One Bum Date
The Dayton Daily News carried the sad tale of a 23-year-old local man who went to meet a woman he initially contacted on a “popular dating site,” but instead of romance, he found trouble and it put him in the hospital.
Seems this fellow was walking to meet the woman at a residence when he was interrupted by a fellow who demanded everything he was carrying, and had a handgun to back it up. Our would-be suitor pushed the man away and ran, but uyou can’t outrun a bullet, and he was wounded.
Now, the newspaper suggests, it might be that this fellow was set up for a robbery. If so, that’s no way to make a lasting first impression. Next time, instead of candy, take a Colt.
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