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Newslinks for 1/23/2006

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Nations Urged to Create Gun-Free Zones
Submitted by: News Director

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"The widespread proliferation of small arms and light weapons can be curbed more effectively by reducing demand than by merely cutting off supplies, according to a new report on arms control released here." ...

"In South Africa and Solomon Islands -- two of the countries surveyed in the study -- demand for weapons has been successfully diminished through the promotion of gun-free zones established in villages, schools, bars and other communal spaces."
 

Taking Aim at Small-Arms Trafficking; Vatican Joins Voices Pleading for Action
Submitted by: News Director

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"Sometimes it's the little things that count, and that's true also when it comes to armaments. For two weeks, Jan. 9-20, the United Nations has been reviewing progress made in reducing the trade in small arms."

"U.N. estimates reckon there are more than 600 million small arms and light weapons in circulation worldwide. They come from a variety of sources, including illicit trading, leftovers from conflicts, and theft from military and police armories."

"The Zurich-based International Relations and Security Network, in a report it published Jan. 11, said that small arms are responsible for more than half a million deaths per year, including 300,000 in armed conflict and 200,000 more from homicides and suicides."
 

Statistics Indicate Gun Control Only Increases Crime
Submitted by: News Director

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"Henry Aubin’s Jan. 18 column repeats urban legends propagated by groups financed by the state to lobby the state, such as the Coalition for Gun Control."

"It is true, as Aubin claims, that homicides have decreased in Canada over the past 15 years, although I don’t understand why he chooses 1996 as the starting year to make his point, when the 1995 C-68 law really started to come in force only in 1998. The main point, however, is that homicide rates have decreased more in the U.S., where guns have become more common, than in Canada: in fact, since 1998, the homicide rate has dropped by 33% in the US while it increased 3% in Canada."
 

Website Hopes to Save Children from Firearm Accidents
Submitted by: News Director

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"Child safety organization www.playdateSecure.com has just launched its child safety website. This free web-service provides parents with an opportunity to provide and securely share details of the safety of their homes before a play date begins. Parents are invited to become a member and then prompted to fill out an online safety questionnaire. The questionnaire asks everything from important safety items such as:"

"Is there a gun in the house? (The Center for Disease Control and prevention (CDC) states in 2004, 111 children were fatally injured in non-homicide, firearm accidents. They also state that 2668 children were non-fatally injured in that same year.)"
 

Officials fear gun games may end in tragedy
Submitted by: News Director

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"A recent near-shooting incident involving 'air soft guns' Jan. 13 resulted in three arrests but thankfully didn't end tragically."

"But it has local officials concerned that games involving non-fatal weapons could result in tragedy some day."

"In this instance, an off-duty police officer saw three juveniles playing with what looked like real guns and called for backup, according to Carrie Conner, Bullhead City Police spokeswoman."

"The three juveniles were arrested and charged with misdemeanor disorderly conduct, although more charges could be filed."
 

Our deadly exports: Guns, violence and homicides
Submitted by: News Director

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"But of late, guns have seeped into the country anyway. A spate of sensational shootings has shocked Canada. Voters are reportedly fearful and angry - emotions that may shape the outcome of tomorrow's national election."

"Milwaukee frets over the 122 murders that took place here last year. Toronto, which has four times the residents Milwaukee has, had less than half as many murders. Yet that city is stunned over its 55 homicides, a 15-year high."

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Meanwhile, America's murders have been declining despite the gun banners' hysterical claims about the nation being awash in guns, while gun control "utopia" Toronto's murder rates have been on the rise. Care to explain? Or is this America's fault somehow?
 

Traditional foes hold up progress on small arms
Submitted by: News Director

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"After two weeks of talking, governments have achieved virtually no outcome from a UN conference on controlling the proliferation and misuse of small arms. During this time, approximately 12,000 more people have died at gunpoint and many more have been injured, bereaved or denied access to livelihoods, healthcare and education because of armed violence. Usually at loggerheads on disarmament issues, the USA and Iran, Israel and Egypt are on the same side of the table - holding up progress, and thus preventing thousands of lives from being saved every year."
 

NJ: Deputy loses job over gun incident
Submitted by: News Director

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"Patrick M. O'Connor forfeited his job as a Morris County Sheriff's Office sergeant on Friday and was put on probation for five years for pointing a loaded handgun at a Denville police sergeant who talked him out of committing suicide."

"On Nov. 16, 2004, in the grip of a mental breakdown and paranoia, O'Connor went to neighbor Douglas Wilkins' home on Holly Drive in Denville carrying two handguns. Township Sgt. Ronald Nametko, the first responder to a 911 call, spent almost an hour calming O'Connor, who alternately pointed a gun at him and at his own head and spoke of wanting to die of 'suicide by cop.'"
 

PA: Report Finds Easton Police Officers Violate Gun Safety Rules
Submitted by: News Director

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"Another dark cloud hangs over the Easton Police Department tonight, as a new report finds city cops regularly break the rules when it comes to the safety of their guns."

"The findings come just 10 months after an officer was shot and killed inside the department's headquarters." ...

"The report found that some police officers leave their guns loaded and in vulnerable places, like unlocked desk drawers and lockers.

"Others officers carry loaded guns outside of their holsters without the safety locks."

"The report -- authored by an Allentown attorney -- makes several to recommendations improve safety, for example locking the armory and designating areas for gun cleaning."
 

PA: Cops told to apply gun advice
Submitted by: News Director

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"The Easton Police Department should adopt gun-safety practices recommended in a recent report in order to prevent the death of another officer, city Councilman Dan Corpora said Friday."

"'We've gone through a tragedy that probably should have never happened and should never happen again,' he said, referring to the March 25, 2005, shooting death of officer Jesse Sollman inside police headquarters." ...

"Sollman's death prompted a massive overhaul of the police department. City officials hired Kapelsohn in May to help the force develop new firearms policies and procedures."
 

TX: 17-year veteran faces aggravated assault charge in off-duty incident
Submitted by: News Director

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"A 17-year veteran Austin police officer was arrested Saturday and charged with aggravated assault after his colleagues said that while he was off duty Friday night, he threatened a man with a revolver during a disagreement about money invested in speculative stocks."

"Officer Robert Jackson, 48, remained at the Travis County Jail on Saturday night. His bail was set at $50,000."

"Jackson will be placed on restricted duty at home, with pay, pending the outcome of the criminal and Internal Affairs investigations, police said."

"The second-degree felony carries a fine of up to $10,000 and up to 20 years in jail. The case will be presented to a grand jury by the Travis County district attorney's office."
 

UK: Paramedics suspended after they 'refuse' 999 call
Submitted by: News Director

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"TWO paramedics have been suspended over claims they failed to attend a 999 call on time after arguing it was not their turn."

"It is alleged the pair, who work at the Kempston station, argued with the controller who had sent them to attend a category A incident."

"All calls made to Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Ambulance and Paramedic Service are graded A, B or C, with A being the most serious call-out."

"But instead of immediately leaving the station to attend the incident, it is claimed the pair argued that it was not their turn to go out on a job and said another crew should attend."

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Not only are the British disarmed, but they can't even get the paramedics to come out when they need help.
 

Sharpshooter Romp To 4667-4532 Win Over Ohio State
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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"Sophomore All-American Chris Abalo topped the field in both events as Army's rifle team romped to a one-sided 4532-4667 win over Ohio State in a match held in conjunction with the Palmyra Tournament, where the Black Knights finished runner-up to Alaska Fairbanks in the collegiate division."
 

OK: Police adding tasers to equipment
Submitted by: News Director

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"Every Norman police officer who’s been equipped with a taser gun has been required to 'take a ride' on its electronic current."

"'We want every officer to know what it’s like to be shot with a taser, so they’ll understand what they’d be putting that person through,' said Lt. Mike Praizner, taser training coordinator."

"Praizner said he’s 'taken the ride' on three occasions."

"'It was like nothing I’d ever experienced before,' Praizner said. 'The taser has the capacity to involuntarily lock up your muscles so that you can’t move even if you wanted to.'"
 

NY: Anti-gun rally in the Bronx
Submitted by: News Director

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FULL TEXT BELOW:

At an anti-gun rally in the Bronx Saturday speakers urged the city council to place illegal gun violence at the top of their agenda every day.

They said they something must to done to stop the flow of illegal guns into the communities and neighborhoods of New York City before the next innocent victim is killed.

There was a moment of silence at today's rally in the south Bronx to remember the victims of illegal gun violence.

 

Australia: Teen with fake firearm threatens man
Submitted by: News Director

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"A 16-year-old boy recovering from hallucinogenic drugs in hospital has apparently threatened a man with a replica hand gun in Brisbane's south."

"The teen is believed to have pointed the realistic imitation firearm at a 25-year-man and pulled the trigger, police said."

"The incident occurred after the man confronted the teen, who was throwing bottles into his front yard. The teen then boarded a city-bound bus."

"Police intercepted the bus in Annerley, locating the teen and the fake gun, which had been hidden behind a seat."
 

AK: Alaska lawmakers consider expanding deadly force as self-defense
Submitted by: News Director

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"Alaska lawmakers are considering expanding a state law so a person could use deadly force to protect themselves not just at home but anywhere in the state." ...

"'If you're walking down the street and a rapist tries to drag you into an alley, or if you're walking through a parking lot and a kidnapper tries to drag you into his van, you do not have to retreat,' said Brian Judy of the NRA. 'You can choose to stand your ground and fight with force.'"

"Sen. Gretchen Guess, a Democrat from Anchorage, wondered if she would be held liable if somebody shot at her at a mall and she fired back. The answer was no."
 

UK: Capital gun crime rises by 50 per cent
Submitted by: News Director

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"Record levels of gun crime are being blamed on the fact that more people than ever are carrying firearms as fashion accessories."

"Figures published this week by the Home Office are expected to show that offences involving guns have soared by as much as 50 per cent in some parts of the country."

"The greatest rises have been in the number of people found in possession of firearms and in the number of attempted murders."
 

A Hard Kick From John Wayne's Gun
Submitted by: Anonymous

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"Come spring, the Winchester rifle, immortalized as the gun that won the West and rode into the sunset with John Wayne, will be made in Portugal and Japan."

"The U.S. Repeating Arms Company, which has manufactured rifles and shotguns in New Haven since 1866, is set to shut its doors on March 31. About 200 people will lose their jobs, many having worked for decades on the plant's assembly line."
 

Gun that may have been Hitler's headed for auction
Submitted by: News Director

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"A gun that may have belonged to Adolf Hitler is expected to fetch thousands of dollars when it's auctioned off."

"The bidding on the German-made shotgun with the initials 'A.H.' begins January 30th in an online auction hosted by a pawn shop in Bloomington, Illinois. Shop owner Wes Lane says he didn't believe it when he was first told the weapon once belonged to Hitler. But he changed his mind after hearing the story about how it was taken from one of Hitler's secret hideaways in May 1945. Now he's 'totally convinced.'"
 

Canada: Ammunition records listing legitimate gun owners may provide a handy 'shopping list' for criminals out to steal guns -- and bullets
Submitted by: News Director

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"In the pre-election panic of seeing his Liberal party plummeting in the polls, Prime Minister Paul Martin jumped on the tragedy of Toronto's Year of the Gun and vowed to ban all handguns in this country -- his crosshairs obviously focused on legal collectors and sport shooters."

"Illegal handguns, after all, are already banned."

"His target, therefore, became the law-abiding citizen."
 

MS: 'Deadly force' bills protect all victims
Submitted by: News Director

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"I have reviewed several of the bills in question, and none of them will do what your editorial suggests ('Gunslinger: 'Protection' bills could cause harm,' Jan. 13)."

"These measures do not, in your words, 'endorse gun use — and deadly force — to resolve disputes,' unless illegal breaking and entering or kidnapping are 'disputes.' ..."

"Also, your assertion that 'no one is 'protected' by gunslingers walking the streets' is both erroneous and silly."

"Regardless of the bills in question and your totally unfounded opinions, we do have a right to be armed, and furthermore it is a well-proven fact that the more liberal the laws allowing concealed carry of firearms, the lower the violent crime rate."
 

AL: Cease Fire opens door to combat violent crime
Submitted by: News Director

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"Admittedly, there is no simple, easy solution to the crime problem. However, there is agreement that the 2005 murder rate is the highest in Birmingham since 1997."

"So on a cold, windy morning, and a Saturday at that, about 200 people crowded into Birmingham City Council chamber to hear about an idea that seeks to get the total community lined up on the side of peace and order. It's called Cease Fire."
 

OR: Gun club under fire after DEQ finds lead at range
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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"The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has required the Medford Rifle and Pistol Club to test soil for lead contamination after the club improperly disposed of dust swept off the floor and sand that catches bullets fired at targets."

"After receiving a complaint that the club had mismanaged lead-containing wastes, Rai Peterson, a Medford-based DEQ hazardous-waste compliance inspector, found sand and sweepings with visible lead Thursday on the ground outside the indoor range at 1253 E. Vilas Road."
 

Mexico: Mexico City offers new computers for old guns
Submitted by: News Director

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"Mexicans are being invited to exchange their weapons for computers under a quirky new idea to curb rampant crime in Mexico City."

"Authorities in one of the city's 16 districts are offering a new computer, out of 150 donated by a charitable foundation, for each gun handed in."

"'People often have a gun at home, which could perhaps be for self-defense, but sadly it becomes a family tragedy when it is not used properly' Guadalupe Lopez, local government head for the central district of Alvaro Obregon, told Reuters."
 

WI: City split on gun bill
Submitted by: News Director

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"Gov. Jim Doyle vetoed a bill Friday that would have lifted a 133-year-old ban prohibiting Wisconsinites from carrying concealed weapons, setting up a political battle that could test party loyalty as lawmakers try to override the veto." ...

"Doyle, a Democrat, said the bill endangers public safety by letting people carry guns in shopping malls, banks and movie theaters. Wisconsin remains one of the safest states in the nation, negating the need to carry weapons for protection, the governor added in his veto message."

"While storm clouds may be gathering at the state Capitol, local gun enthusiasts say the proposal wouldn't have a significant impact on the city of Portage."
 

WI: Bill would allow 8-year-olds to hunt
Submitted by: News Director

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"Legislators who fear young people are losing interest in Wisconsin's hunting tradition want to allow children as young as 8 years old to shoot deer."

"Rep. Scott Gunderson's proposal would lower the hunting age from 12 to 8."

"'It's important to get kids involved in hunting at a younger age. If they are not engaged in hunting by 12 or 13, they probably won't be,' said Gunderson, R-Waterford."
 

NC: Mayor's gun crime crackdown criticized
Submitted by: News Director

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"Mayor Bill Bell's call for a crackdown on gun crimes is probably the weakest and least significant part of the effort he's trying to organize to cut the city's homicide rate, according to some community leaders who otherwise praise the initiative."

"Local defense lawyers say Durham's district attorney is already prosecuting gun crimes as aggressively as the law allows, and add that they think authorities can do little more without provoking a fight with gun-rights lobbies like the National Rifle Association."
 

PA: Seminar Held To Combat The Rise Of Gun Violence
Submitted by: News Director

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"Elected officials and community members gathered in Center City to try and stop the escalation of violent gun use in Philadelphia. It is an effort many are hoping will save hundred of lives."

"'We have to decide one homicide, one incident of violence is one too many,' said Inspector Steve Johnson of Southwest Detectives."

"And that is the message that the group of community members wants to bring to every household in a city plagued by gun violence. Last year, police reported 380 homicides in Philadelphia and Johnson says he does not want to see 2006 end the same."
 

Police Can't Play Against Toy Guns
Submitted by: News Director

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"Air guns are not made to kill."

"But their very design -- in some cases so realistic it is impossible to tell them from real guns -- can give police no choice but to shoot to kill when they encounter even a child holding one."

"That's what happened Jan. 13 when eighth-grader Chris Penley took a Daisy ProLine AirStrike 240 to school." ...

"Law-enforcement officers are trained to react when they think they are being threatened with a weapon, Beeman said."

"It's a life-and-death situation, he said. They can't fool around at that point. It's the behavior. The object is not the point."
 

South Africa: Gun owners are people too, and alive to tell tale
Submitted by: News Director

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"I use my right arm to do a variety of things. Shovel oily fast food into my mouth. Operate my TV remote. Turn the pages of this newspaper. Write letters. Bowl a cricket ball. Wave at people in the street. Vote with an X."

"I use my left arm to support the activities of my right arm, such as tying my shoelaces. Lift weights at the gym. Drive a car. Swim."

My third arm is the most important. It is as important as my heart and lungs and brain. My third arm keeps me alive in the face of violent criminal attacks. It has done so four times in the past three years. It also occasionally helps me put biltong in my pocket. Any attempt by you, GFSA, to pass a law legislating that I am compelled to amputate my third arm will be met with a fierce and spirited resistance."
 

 QUOTES TO REMEMBER
You must understand, therefore, that there are two ways of fighting: by law or by force. The first way is natural to men, and the second to beasts. But as the first way often proves inadequate one must have recourse to the second. — Niccolo Machiavelli in "The Prince."

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