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Let Gun Owners Come Out of the Shadows!
Submitted by: Rob Morse
Website: http://slowfacts.wordpress.com

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Should women be seen with guns? Should murder be turned into blood-porn? We get wildly different answers depending on who we ask.

Gory images seem to be OK when the news media use them to shock us.
Then the rules change. Showing self-defense is suddenly in bad taste if we show a woman defending herself.

Let women decide when and where they need to go armed. It should be their choice, not the choice of a politician.
 

DC: DC Pastor: Christians Have No Right To Use Guns For Self Defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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On December 28 Reverend Rob Schenck — chair of Evangelical Church Alliance — argued that Christians have no right to use guns for self-defense.

Schenck said he understands the tendency to want to acquire arms — “especially after terrorist attacks” — but he contends that doing is to violate biblical commands.
 

PA: Gun permit rush in PA
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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All across our state county courthouses have been packed -- some are standing room only -- with people who are looking to apply for a license to carry a concealed weapon.

"Everybody on the first floor, they're all on the benches outside our office and they're waiting for permits," Cambria County Sheriff Bob Kolar said.

As the end of the year approaches, more and more people across the state have been applying for gun permits.
 

MI: Taylor homeowner shoots garage intruder
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A Taylor homeowner was arrested and then released after shooting an intruder early Tuesday morning.

Police Chief Mary Sclabassi said a 31-year-old man who lives in the 8000 block of Oak Street told police he heard noises in his detached garage at about 2:50 a.m. Dec. 29 and shot the man who came out. Sclabassi said the man is a 27-year-old Flat Rock resident who was shot in the leg and taken to the hospital.
 

NH: Jasper: Rule allowing reps to carry guns won’t be suspended for presidential candidate visits
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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House Speaker Shawn Jasper has a message for the Secret Service: We won’t give up our guns.

Jasper invited all major presidential candidates to speak to the 400-member House ahead of the primary on Feb. 9.

And while only three presidential hopefuls have Secret Service protection, Jasper’s office has preemptively told the federal agency that if those candidates do visit, the House doesn’t plan to suspend its rule allowing members to carry concealed guns on the floor.

“They can come here or not based on the knowledge of what our House rules are,” said Jasper, a Hudson Republican. “We thought it best to reach out to the Secret Service and let them know what our rules are, and give them the opportunity to figure out how they proceed.”
 

NY: Local Gun Stores See Spike in Holiday Sales
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Dan Hawtof is relatively new to shooting.

"I grew up in a very liberal, 'guns-are-for-criminals' family," said Hawtof, a Corning Fish and Game Club board member.

But he, like millions of other Americans, bought a brand new gun this year. Gun sales have soared this holiday season. At Hesselson’s in Elmira, firearm sales were up 15 percent. Owner Thomas Witzel says a shaky political climate may be contributing to the spike.

"A lot of gun owners feel that they just keep on increasing legislation … people are worried,” Witzel said. “Are they going to be limited to what they can buy? Are there going to be more checks?"
 

TX: The Wild Wild West: “Open Carry” Law in Texas Rings in the New Year
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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But we still don’t know why. Why is this necessary? Intimidation? Self defense? Fashion? What good will come of this? Furthermore, if individuals are entitled to carry concealed weapons, why the additional need to flaunt those weapons, particularly at a time when citizens have been plagued by mass shootings, police brutality, racial discrimination, and religious intolerance? Placing firearm intimidation on the forefront of unstable societal, racial, and economic tensions does not sound like positive and commendable progression toward stability in such a gun weary and gun polarized nation.
 

TX: The Well Armed Woman chapter forming locally
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A new women’s group is forming in Sulphur Springs and it’s a bit different from your typical women’s support or charitable organization. The Lake Fork Shooting Chapter of The Well Armed Woman is designed to educate, equip and empower women age 21 or older about shooting topics relevant to them.

Author, speaker and certified NRA instructor Carrie Lightfoot founded The Well Armed Woman, a 501(c)3 organization, to give women an opportunity to learn, train and discuss issues important to female gun owners. A local gun range is enlisted to provide a “safe and comfortable environment” for each chapter’s monthly meetings. TWAW currently has 222 chapters in 49 U.S. states, including 10 in Texas.
 

WI: Assembly Speaker: 'Campus Carry' bill likely won't pass
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A bill to allow concealed weapons in University of Wisconsin campus buildings probably will not pass in the current session.

GOP Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said he personally favors the idea, but he has not heard an "outcry from the public saying they want that."

The state currently allows concealed weapons in outdoor campus spaces, but not in university buildings.
 

Abusing Government Watch Lists: How Freedom Dies
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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By now, you’ve heard and read about the schemes proposed by everyone from President Barack Obama to U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., that would ban firearms sales to anyone on the so-called “Terror Watch List.”

And as you probably already know, Republican leaders—and some, but not enough, Democrats—oppose this reckless and dangerous policy, because it violates:

--the principle of due process under the law, a foundation of American jurisprudence;
--the notion of “innocent until proven guilty;”
--the right to hear any charges and confront any witnesses against you;
--the right to an open trial by a jury of your peers; and
--the very rule of law upon which this nation was founded.
 

You can't be pro-life and pro-gun
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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In the United States, evangelicals are among the biggest supporters of gun rights. They are the major religious group least likely to support stricter laws. Evangelical Larry Pratt, who directs Gun Owners of America, even argues that all Christians should be armed.

For most of my adult life, I agreed. I believed that we had a God-given right to defend ourselves. I also believed that the Second Amendment guarantees a right to bear arms, and that anyone should be able to obtain a gun.
 

Wrong guy to push for gun control
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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President Obama is expected to enact more gun control next month via executive order, circumventing Congress and further cementing the feeling among many Americans that the commander-in-chief would like nothing more than to repeal the Second Amendment.

The way Obama’s actions are perceived is unfortunate because sometimes what he wants to do makes sense.

But so many Americans don’t trust him and think he’s at best grossly out of touch with reality, that any gun control push by him is immediately highly suspect.

Obama’s executive order is expected to make it illegal for people selling guns from their personal collections to do so without performing background checks on the buyers.
 

IA: Sanders talks guns and oil in southeast Iowa
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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In a separate exchange, a man in the crowd asked Sanders about his stance on the Second Amendment.

"I support it," the Vermont senator said, before noting its limitations.

"I believe it is not an absolute right," he said. "I do not believe you have the right to have a grenade launcher in your backyard and I think most people understand that."

Sanders said most people agree that gun ownership is not inherently bad, but that some stricter regulations are needed. Specifically, he called for closing the so-called "gun show loophole" and strengthening criminal background checks.
 

NC: Here's what happens when nut jobs hold public office
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Most Second Amendment advocates we know do not believe it allows for seriously mentally deranged people to lawfully possess firearms. Reasonable people agree on that. But the problem comes in how to identify "mentally deranged" people before they go off the deep end. For example, we know people who have Domestic Violence Protective Orders entered against them without ever having been to court for a hearing, much less having been adjudicated as deranged. We even know people who have been denied concealed carry permits simply because at some point a doctor prescribed an anti-depressant for them. That prescription because a part of their "mental record" and tripped a red flag in a background check.
 

James Woods: 'Buy More Guns and Learn How to Use Them'
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Actor James Woods just tweeted out some news and some advice: "Amanda Blackburn killing part of eight-day crime spree...Buy more guns and learn how to use them. #2A #NRA"
 

Should anti-gun politicians be denied armed security?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Fox News is reporting this morning that a Virginia state senator is making good on his promise to push for defunding armed bodyguards for anti-gun Gov. Terry McAuliffe unless the Democrat does an about face on an October order to prohibit firearms in most state office buildings.

It brings up an interesting question that could apply to any government official anywhere, from mayors on up. If an elected official is opposed to the carrying of defensive sidearms by average citizens, should that official automatically lose his/her security guards?
 

IL: Challenging people’s rights not the solution
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Sponsors Emanuel Chris Welch, Pamela Reaves-Harris and Jaime M. Andrade Jr. are asking fellow lawmakers to “urge the courts, especially the U.S. Supreme Court, to adhere to the clear wording of the Second Amendment being a right afforded to state-sponsored militias and not individuals.”

The resolution, HR0855, was introduced in November and is now sitting quietly in the House Rules Committee.

Fortunately, the Rules Committee is where a lot of proposed laws go to die. House Resolution 855 — even though just a non-binding, feel-good piece of legislation — should never see the light of the full House chamber.
 

WV: Stabbing at Clarksburg Convenience Store Ruled as Act of Self-Defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A stabbing that took place last week at a convenience store in Harrison County has been determined to be an act of self-defense.

The series of events that led to the incident were set off when Clint Grimes, 37, of Alabama, was dropped of at the Louis A. Johnson VA Medical Center to enter a detox center following an incident in Nutter Fort, according to Sheriff’s deputies investigating the case.
 

2016 will usher in a fresh wave of assaults on Second Amendment rights
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Matt covered the ongoing mess in Virginia earlier this morning, where the reciprocity issue for gun permit owners is being essentially tossed on the trash heap, but I’m sorry to say that their story is only the tip of the iceberg. Having lost the battle of public opinion on the importance of Second Amendment rights and losing repeatedly in the courts at the federal level, gun rights opponents have been crafting new strategies to chip away the constitutional rights of gun owners at the state level.
 

KS: Lawmakers might force county's hand on firearms
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The Kansas Legislature has decided that every person who so desires should be able to carry a firearm – concealed or out in the open – into almost any public building, including on college campuses and in county courthouses.

For Reno County, the alternative would mean renovations to the courthouse to create a secure entrance that would cost about $300,000 than originally planned, not including the roughly $200,000 a year it would cost to staff a single secure entryway.
 

VA: Altering gun laws isn't an absolute answer, but it's change within our control
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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What made a young couple walk into a health facility and start shooting people? It wasn't our gun laws. It wasn't the easy ability to purchase a weapon in this country.

If such things made people killers, all Americans would be killers. In that narrow way, gun advocates who bristle at any change after the San Bernardino killings are right.
No one makes you pull a trigger.

But if you stop the argument there, you're being naïve, as naive as saying no one makes you abuse drugs, no one forces you to drink and drive, no one tells you to give your money to phony investment advisors. Yet we have laws regarding all those things.
 

TX: Harrison County offices security shifted for open carry
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A security station at the Harrison County Courthouse is being moved as part of the county's effort to comply with the state's open carry law, which takes effect Friday.

At the recommendation of Sheriff Tom McCool, the courthouse security station has been moved out of the entry doorway to allow holders of concealed handgun licenses to access the county's tax and purchasing offices without going through the checkpoint.
 

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