Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Gun Rights News Roundup

Articles, news stories, and op-eds of interest to gun owners:

NPR: Gun sales surge (audio available at link):
The recession has put the brakes on all sorts of industries, but the upward spike in gun sales that began about the time President Obama was elected continues.

In California, for example, sales over a six-month period late last year and early this year are up 32 percent from the same period a year ago. And while no national figures on gun sales are available, the FBI reports a strong surge in applications for background checks — the best available indicator.

Gun retailers, consumers and politicians on both sides of the aisle attribute the spike to the election of Barack Obama and fears that his administration and a Congress controlled by Democrats will seek new restrictions on gun ownership. ...

[Arizona] Permitless concealed carry bill advances:
PHOENIX — Siding with gun owners over cops, the Senate Judiciary Committee agreed Friday to let people carry concealed weapons without getting a state permit.

The 4-3 vote came despite comments from several police officers who said letting anyone at least 18 have a hidden gun will make their jobs more dangerous. Friday's vote sends the measure to the full Senate. ...

U.S. Army orders .300 Win Mag for snipers:
The U.S. Army has ordered 38.4 million rounds of .300 Winchester magnum ammunition for its newly modified M-24 sniper rifles, as well as similar SOCOMs Mk13 models. The new ammo will cost about $1.30 per round. The .300 Winchester magnum will be ordered in minimum lots of 56,160 rounds (117 boxes of 480 rounds each). The entire 38.4 million rounds will last a while.

All this is in response to requests from snipers for a longer range weapon, but not one as bulky and heavy as the 30 pound .50 caliber rifle (which is good to about 2,000 meters). Thus the army is modifying existing M24 rifles to fire the more powerful .300 Winchester Magnum round. It was felt that this gave the snipers all the additional range they needed, without requiring a much heavier rifle. SOCOM has been using this approach since the early 1990s. ...

More lies: Mexican Attorney General blames U.S. for Mexico's gun problem:
Mexico's police are overwhelmed in part because drug traffickers have them outgunned. Mexico's Attorney General Eduardo Medina-Mora is helping lead the effort to break up the cartels.

"Half of what we seize, 55 percent are assault rifles. And this is what gives these groups this intimidation power. Over 17,000 assault rifles, throughout the last two years. Two thousand and 200 grenades, missile and rocket launchers. Fifty caliber sniper rifles," the attorney general explained.

It might surprise you to learn where all these guns are coming from. It turns out 90 percent of them are purchased in the US.

"The Second Amendment was never designed to arm criminal groups, and especially not foreign criminal groups as it is today," Medina-Mora said.

Asked if he blames the U.S. for not doing more to stop this flow, he told Cooper, "We believe that much more needs to be done. We need a much more committed effort from the U.S." ...

Jamaica: Another failure of gun control:
KINGSTON, Jamaica -- Ships from Miami steam into Jamaica's main harbor loaded with TV sets and blue jeans. But some of the most popular U.S. imports never appear on the manifests: handguns, rifles and bullets that stoke one of the world's highest murder rates.

The volume is much less than the flow of U.S. guns into Mexico that end up in the hands of drug cartels _ Jamaican authorities recover fewer than 1,000 firearms a year. But of those whose origin can be traced, 80 percent come from the U.S., Jamaican law enforcement officials have said in interviews with The Associated Press. ...

Comment: Jamaica has had some of the strictest and most draconian gun controls in place for decades, yet criminals are still well armed. If you can't eliminate guns from an island nation (just ask the Brits), you cannot possibly expect to do so in a nation with land borders. Duh. Jamaican criminals are well armed. The only people in Jamaica who want guns but don't have them are those who obey the law.

New Jersey Sen. Lautenberg introduces another infringement:
New Jersey Democrat senator Frank R. Lautenberg plans to introduce legislation designed to cancel the Second Amend rights of well over a million U.S. citizens this coming week, according to the New York Times. “Mr. Lautenberg plans to introduce legislation on Monday that would give the attorney general the discretion to block gun sales to people on terror watch lists,” the newspaper reports. ...

Comment: Denying a fundamental human right based on a classified list reportedly riddled with inaccuracies and subject to no meaningful judicial oversight, with inclusion on the list at the whim of government bureaucrats and without due process, is something worthy of a police state, not a free republic. Of course, Lautenberg is probably quite comfortable with such police state tactics.

[Louisiana] New Orleans "assault weapons" ban resolution fails:
BATON ROUGE -- Legislation urging the New Orleans City Council to enact a citywide ban on assault weapons was shot down by a Senate committee Tuesday.

The Judiciary B Committee failed to muster a single vote for House Concurrent Resolution 150 by Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-New Orleans, killing it unanimously. The non-binding measure is an expression of the feelings of the Legislature on an issue and would have called on council members, but not required them, to act.

The council can enact a ban on the assault weapons on its own. ...

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