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Newslinks for 11/1/2005

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Gun rights amid natural disasters? You bet
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Considerable ink is being used to question why the Second Amendment Foundation recently successfully challenged a regulation that prohibited firearms possession in federal emergency trailer parks, where victims of Hurricane Katrina were relocated."

"Perhaps the most astonishing of these diatribes was an editorial appearing in the New York Daily News, which pontificated, 'Even during natural disasters, the country's gun lovers fight for their right to bear arms.'"

"This might come as a shock to the Daily News, but during and after natural disasters, or man-made ones, the people still retain possession of their civil rights, not to mention the natural rights of self-defense and survival. Also among those civil rights retained by people in the wake of a disaster is the right of a free press." ...
 

An assault on citizen rights
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"It was something we never believed we would see in the United States: Armed police and National Guardsmen taking firearms from law-abiding citizens – at gunpoint."

"This happened in New Orleans, beginning about 11 days after Hurricane Katrina ..."

"Not only did it happen, but the officers and soldiers weren’t very gentle about it." ...

"Police entered the home of elderly Patricia Konie, who told them she did not want to leave her home and ordered them out of her house."

"She said she could protect her home and possessions with her gun, which police asked to see."

"Konie displayed a small pistol in her open palm and a big cop body-slammed her into a wall, took her gun and dragged her outside to be forcefully evacuated." ...
 

Gun Control And The New Federal Law Shielding Gun Manufacturers From Lawsuits
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"When President George W. Bush signed the newly-passed Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (in pdf format) into law on October 26th, it marked a major victory for the National Rifle Association and gun manufacturers, who have been pushing for the legislation for years. It also marked a tremendous defeat for New York City and the many other cities that have pending lawsuits against the gun industry."

"The law is specifically designed to end those lawsuits. It specifically exempts firearm manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers from civil liability for injuries and deaths caused by their products ..." ...
 

DC: I'm a Hunter, Here's Why.
Submitted by: tyree white

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... "Friends and colleagues express surprise, and often disgust. So I seldom talk about hunting, at least in this part of the country. I don't usually admit that I even own guns. But last week, after the news reports about 8-year-old Sierra Stiles killing a bear on the first day of the season in Western Maryland, I couldn't avoid the subject. It was the talk of the office and local talk radio, with some people suggesting that allowing such a young child to participate in the hunt was a form of child abuse. When I heard about young Sierra's feat, my first reaction ran toward skepticism. A third-grader killing a bear? Two shots to the chest? Well, hats off to her: I know how hard it is to hunt such large prey, how easy it is to do everything right and yet fail to make the kill. I didn't bag my first buck until I was 16." ...
 

The shame of bear hunting
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Last week's local section of The Washington Post celebrated - yes, celebrated - the killing of a black bear by an 8-year-old girl. The compassionate among us mourned not just the cruel and completely unnecessary killing of one of nature's most fabulous creatures, but the love of violence and destruction instilled in this child by her family."

"That certain Americans sadly find valor in killing is beyond doubt. But in many ways, it's also beyond belief. That they would take pleasure in a wantonly destructive act and train this into an 8-year-old female heart is beyond forgiveness." ...
 

OH: Man, 83, discusses shooting at home
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Walter Swita used a German Luger 9 mm pistol he brought home from World War II to shoot an intruder he suspects robbed him a few weeks ago."

"The intruder, Benjamin Brooks ... died Sunday ..."

"Brooks, whose record included robbery and breaking and entering, lived around the corner from Swita." ...

"Swita said that on Friday night, a man he'd seen hurrying up East Philadelphia grabbed him around the neck as he reached the porch and unlocked the door. The elderly man said he fired two shots at the intruder and they fell to the floor."

"Swita, 'shaking like a leaf,' said he sat down to call 911 to report the shooting. The call taker asked if the man who'd been shot was breathing. Swita said he told her he didn't care." ...
 

AL: Fight Turns Deadly; Gunman May Not Face Charges
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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... "Montgomery police say ... a 23-year old man and his girlfriend were leaving the party when a group of men, which included Shuford, made sexual remarks toward the man's girlfriend. The man got into an argument with the group."

"'They came out today and said Chuck did not start that fight, but it was one of the boys that was with Chuck,' says Davis."

"Detectives say that part of the story is true but Shuford eventually got involved in the assault and that's when the woman's boyfriend reached for his Glock .357 and opened fire, sending two bullets into Shuford's chest and neck. So far the evidence indicates self-defense. That's why the gunman hasn't been charged. In fact, the shooter himself called authorities." ...
 

OR: No cure for abuse (Second letter)
Submitted by: James A. Farmer

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... "What about women in general? What steps can they do to help insure they don't become a victim of criminal violence?"

"Naturally, I endorse the .38-caliber revolver, or the .38 Special or .357-caliber Magnum, or any good handgun for that matter. Such is affordable, practical, and economical 'life insurance-security protection' for the average citizen, whether male or female."

"Time and space doesn't permit me to elaborate further. However, a pro-gun Web site at www.keepandbeararms.com has unlimited information. Click on 'Women and Guns.'" ...
 

SC: No charges filed in shooting
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"No charges have been filed in the shooting of an Anderson man."

"Vernon Edward Hunnicutt, 38, was shot last weekend at 207 Sayre St. with a .25-caliber gun. ..."

"Lt. Layton Creamer of the Anderson Police Department said officers need to again interview witnesses to get more information before investigators will determine possible charges, if any. He said indications are the shooting was in self-defense." ...

"Lt. Creamer said his understanding is that Mr. Hunnicutt lived with his aunt and his grandmother in the house on Sayre Street. He said Mr. Hunnicutt was shot in a bedroom after he started attacking his aunt. His grandmother shot him to stop the attack, Lt. Creamer said." ...
 

VA: Former Democratic governor refuses to back party's AG candidate
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Former Democratic Gov. L. Douglas Wilder said Monday that he will not support the party's candidate for attorney general in the Nov. 8 election because of their differing views on gun rights."

"Wilder, now Richmond's mayor, sent a letter to Democratic state Sen. Creigh Deeds of Bath County informing him of his decision."

"Wilder said he was concerned that Deeds would replace the state's concealed weapons permit law with 'an irresponsible new law that says anyone can carry a concealed weapon anywhere the law does not prohibit such weapons without having to get a permit from law enforcement officials.'" ...
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Submitter's Note: You mean Deeds wants to 'allow' people to [gasp] exercise their rights?!?
 

IL: Senate overrides governor's veto of gun transportation bill
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"The Illinois Senate has backed a statewide standard for transporting firearms, despite the governor's veto and law enforcement objections."

"The Senate voted 38-20 Thursday to override the veto of a measure that would trump local governments' authority to restrict how guns can be transported through their communities."

"Gov. Rod Blagojevich rejected the idea this summer, saying individual communities should be able to establish their own laws about transporting weapons. Law enforcement, local governments and Democrats urged senators to support the governor's move." ...
 

NV: Students, UNLV officials, police should take steps to ensure safety around UNLV
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Steps must be taken around UNLV to ensure the safety of students on and off campus."

"Last week, The Rebel Yell reported that the N2 beat, referring to the area north of campus at about Swenson Street, Twain Avenue and Sierra Vista, is the worst neighborhood in town for crimes committed against people."

"Many of the crimes that occur on campus are caused by non-students who wander onto school grounds and cause trouble." ...
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Submitter's Note: Per Nevada law, permit holders are barred from carrying on University of Nevada property without written permission from the administration.
 

TN: Weapons seized before high school football game
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"For most fans, the football game at Whites Creek High School was like any other, with most of the action taking place on the field. But what many fans didn't know is that Metro Police were in the parking lot, searching people, to prevent what could have been a dangerous situation."

"'We originally had tips from very reliable sources that there could be trouble at the ball game,' said Metro Schools administrator Ralph M. Thompson."

"School officials told News 2 that it all starts with a tip from a School Resource Officer that gang members would be at the stadium. Armed with metal detecting wands, police discovered four handguns. None the people carrying them were students." ...
 

PA: Gun Trafficking Needed: Steadier aim
Submitted by: RPA-PAC
Website: http://www.rpa-pac.org

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"The young, armed killers settling scores every day on the streets of Philadelphia and Camden might be hurling only sticks and stones at each other, but for the region's thriving trade in illegal handguns."

"So how can guns be kept out of their hands? In their 'Blueprint for a Safer Philadelphia,' local elected, civic and law enforcement leaders call for a full-court press. They plan to target counseling to youths, and services to city neighborhoods most often caught up in shootings. ..."

"Nothing wrong with that approach. ... Far too little, though, is being done to target the gun traffickers - operating mostly in Pennsylvania - who stock the supply lines of illegal weapons in both Philadelphia and Camden." ...
 

TN: KPD revokes retirees' gifts
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Retiring officers at the Knoxville Police Department didn't get a gold watch for their decades of service, but most did get their handguns as a token of appreciation."

"Now the city wants the weapons back."

"A policy instituted this year by Police Chief Sterling P. Owen IV requires retired officers to sign a document acknowledging the gun given to them under the previous chief actually belongs to the city." ...

"Reactions from retired officers to Owen's gun policy were mixed."

"'I guess if they can give it, they can take it away,' said Fred McClanahah, who retired in 1994 as an investigator after 30 years with KPD." [emphasis added] ...
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Submitter's Note: A succinct definition of a privilege vs. a right.
 

AZ: Yuma police hook into firearm database
Submitted by: RPA-PAC
Website: http://www.rpa-pac.org

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"Yuma police investigating gun crimes will soon be able to track the gun more efficiently thanks to a federal weapons database."

"Yuma police expect to be using eTrace, a database established by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, within the next few weeks. The system will let them quickly track the ownership history of guns used in crimes."

"The old system could take days because it involves tracking a gun by starting at the manufacturer, then going through the distributor to the retailer and finally the end buyer, Detective Ross Nicolette said."

"... The database began as an ATF pilot program and was recently opened up to more law enforcement agencies."
 

CA: Police departments upgrade weaponry
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"The Newport Beach and Costa Mesa police departments are beefing up their firearms."

"The Costa Mesa City Council recently approved the allocation of $8,000 in state funds toward purchasing shotguns and shotgun mounts for police motorcycles."

"Newport Beach Police patrol cars will soon be equipped with AR-15 automatic rifles, after the City Council accepted more than $17,000 in donations from the police employees and management associations." ...
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Submitter's Note: But according to the Alliance For Justice:

"Assault weapons were designed to kill and have no protective use. Semi-automatic assault weapons were designed and developed ... to kill or wound as many people as possible, in a short period of time, without the need for carefully aimed fire."
 

CA: What's a city to do?
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"When you lose faith in the police's ability to crack down on car thieves and vandals, what do you do?"

"Some take the law into their own hands."

"Several people in a west Modesto neighborhood say thieves and vandals are targeting them, shattering not only their car windows but their peace of mind."

"They have called police and requested extra patrols, they said, but nothing changes."

"'We're Number One in the nation (in per capita car theft), but the cops won't do anything for us,' said Erika Borges, who lives on October Way, south of the Modesto Junior College West Campus. 'You start to wonder why we're paying taxes.'" ...
 

WI: Officials help build shooting range
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"Town officials are rolling up their sleeves and using a little elbow grease to get their new firing range up and running."

"Town of Beloit Police Chief John Wilson and Deputy Chief Willis Abegglen were out at the new range, located off Walters Road at the north end of the old dump, building the shooting platform last week."

"This week, Wilson said he hopes to have the aisles for the shooting range done and ready for cement."

"The shooting platform will provide the opportunity for officers to fire at 9 feet, 7 yards or 15 yards." ...
 

Jamaica: Adams, five cops plead not guilty as Crawle trial opens
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"THE trial of Senior Superintendent Reneto Adams and five members of the now defunct Crime Management Unit, began yesterday in the Supreme Court, with all six pleading not guilty to four counts of murder. ..."

"The court was told that the police officers had to take their firearms to the City Centre Police Station for safe-keeping. When they returned to the court, they were presented, along with their lawyers." ...

"DPP Kent Pantry, in presenting the crown's case, said the prosecution will prove that the six accused took a decision to kill the persons inside the house, and that they were not shot in self-defence."

"He said after killing the occupants the police attempted a cover-up." ...
 

Guam: Police captain convicted
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"The former head of the Criminal Investigation Section of the Guam Police Department, Capt. Gene Tennessen, was found guilty on two counts of theft and two counts of official misconduct yesterday afternoon."

"The trial began last Thursday with testimony from police officers who were witnesses to the crime. Since his indictment, Tennessen has been promoted. And according to police spokesman Sgt. Joseph Carbullido, Tennessen is currently serving as an inspector in the neighborhood division."

"Closing arguments were presented yesterday morning and a verdict was announced shortly after 3:30 p.m. Tennessen sat unflinching beside his attorney ... as the court clerk read the decision of the five men and seven women of the jury." ...
 

OH: Dayton newspaper reports 'short list' of running mates revealed for Blackwell (BFA)
Submitted by: Buckeye Firearms Association
Website: http://www.buckeyefirearms.org

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"The Dayton Daily News is reporting that State Rep. John White, R-Kettering, and Sen. Jim Jordan, R-Urbana, are on Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell's 'short list' of possible lieutenant governor running mates in next year's governor's race."

"Buckeye Firearms Association can report that both of the named front-runners have a strong history of supporting gun rights for individuals." ...
 

MI: One More Cast: Squirrels: Small critters are big hunting challenge
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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species of game animals open to hunting this time of year, the squirrel stands out as one of the most challenging, enjoyable and rewarding to hunt among small game fare."

"This area is home to some excellent squirrel hunting real estate and an abundance of state land that features many ski, hiking and ORV trails. While selecting an area to hunt, a key aspect to search for is hilly terrain loaded with hardwoods like oak and maple trees. Scope out these areas carefully, looking for acorn-littered ground, leaf bundles (squirrel nests) in trees, and fresh clumps of oak leaves on the ground ... that tree-dwelling squirrels have snipped with their teeth and let fall to the ground, allowing for easy gathering of the nuts. ..." ...
 

MN: This year's motto: 'Shoot more antlerless deer'
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"As a conservation officer for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Stuart Bensen spends most of the firearms deer season checking other hunters. That keeps him out of the deer stand until muzzle-loader season begins in late November. But growing up hunting in the mid-1970s, Bensen says he remembers a different limitation on his deer season:"

"The critters just weren't as plentiful as they are now."

"'If you saw four or five deer in nine days, you were considered lucky,' Bensen, of Erskine, Minn., said. 'Now, if you don't see four or five in a day, it's a slow day.'" ...
 

CA: Ready, aim...
Submitted by: RPA-PAC
Website: http://www.rpa-pac.org

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"A couple of local sharpshooters returned home this weekend and brought their college buddies with them for a two-day rifle competition."

"Lee Lemenager, a sophomore at the University of Nevada, Reno, and freshman Andrew Hickey - both Sutter High graduates - helped the Wolf Pack to victories over the University of San Francisco at the Yuba City Rod and Gun Club." ...
 

Brazil: Fear may explain gun ban vote
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"For Ezaias Guedes da Lima and his neighbors in this Amazonian town, the idea of giving up their guns is as ridiculous as surrendering the machetes they have used to carve out livelihoods in the thick jungle."

"Life here is an isolated, dangerous affair, with only a handful of police covering a huge area and wild boar, alligators and other menaces a constant hazard."

"That isolation was demonstrated Thursday morning, when three men armed with pistols and revolvers calmly robbed the local bank of more than $50,000 ..."

"Local police didn't show up, although the thieves spent 30 minutes clearing out three safes. Federal police from the state capital of Manaus arrived only hours later ..." ...
 

UK: Gun scandal
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"THE SUN today reveals the scandal of how simple it is for smugglers to bring deadly handguns into Britain."

"At the weekend two of our journalists bought a deadly Walther pistol in a Czech market."

"Then it was next stop London, with no checks made as they journeyed across Europe and through the Channel Tunnel."

"It is believed thousands of firearms enter the country this way — fuelling the terrifying rise in gun crime on our streets."

"Eastern Europe is awash with guns. They pour in from the former Soviet states and the Middle East."

"Six weeks ago the Chunnel route was used by Slovakian Michael Pech before he shot ex-girlfriend Clare Bernal ..."

"Shockingly, NOTHING has been done since then to tighten controls." ...
 

Cayman: Gun control isn’t any kind of answer
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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FULL TEXT BELOW:

Dear Sir,

Edward Totty’s statement is ridiculous. Sure gasoline can be used as a weapon, but it cannot be carried and concealed on one’s person as easily as a firearm. The "credible means of self-defence" that Totty mentions is simply an instrument of death where errors of judgment are easily acted on by a simple pull of the trigger.

The possible lack of presence of Police is simply not a valid excuse. Let’s just look to our neighbours in the north and see what happens when the right to bear arms is allowed. There IS a big difference in the gun-related deaths in the US and Canada. This "right" might just have something to do with it.

Jim Ebanks
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Submitter's Note: Or given the "big difference in the gun-related deaths" between Canada and Switzerland, maybe the "right" is immaterial.
 

Russia: Legalization of free arms sales in Russia to result in massive upsurge of criminality
Submitted by: Bruce W. Krafft

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"The question of making the market of fire arms accessible for Russian citizens has been a topic of numerous discussions in the government and media outlets of the country for years already. The State Duma, the Russian parliament, has returned to amendments to the federal law about weapons, which stipulate a certain extension of the list of civil defense weapons."

"According to the current version of the Russian law on weapons, citizens have a right to purchase either smooth-bore guns or self-defense weapons, which include gas pistols and revolvers. If a person buys and uses a smooth-bore gun for five years, he or she will have a right to acquire semi-automatic arms. ..." ...
 

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