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Ninth Circuit vacates lower court decision on carrying guns in Hawaii
Submitted by: David Codrea
Website: http://www.davidcodrea.com

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"Add to that a conflict highlighted by the Supreme Court declining to hear Woollard v. Gallagher, a similar case originating in Maryland, and gun owners are reminded that all the high court has to do to let bad law stand is ... nothing."
 

HI: Hawaii law lets police have sex with prostitutes
Submitted by: Anonymous

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Honolulu police officers have urged lawmakers to keep an exemption in state law that allows undercover officers to have sex with prostitutes during investigations, touching off a heated debate.
Authorities say they need the legal protection to catch lawbreakers in the act. Critics, including human trafficking experts and other police, say it's unnecessary and could further victimize sex workers, many of whom have been forced into the trade.
 

FL: After Fiery Debate, Florida House Passes 'Warning Shot' Bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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After a nearly two-hour debate that focused on Florida's controversial "stand your ground" law, the state House on Thursday easily passed a bill that would expand the self-defense law to include threatened use of force — including showing a gun or firing a warning shot.

The measure (HB 89) by Rep. Neil Combee, R-Polk City, would extend immunity to people who threaten to use force in self-defense — the same immunity already in law for those who actually shoot people in response to perceived threats.
 

DE: Delaware Supreme Court Upholds Gun Rights for Public-Housing Tenants
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The opinion rests in part on the U.S. Supreme Court’s rationale in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), which recognized a “core” Second Amendment right to possess a handgun in the home for purposes of self-defense. The Wilmington restriction, the Delaware Supreme Court argued, similarly undermined gun rights “by functionally disallowing armed self-defense in areas that Residents, their families, and guests may occupy as part of their living space.”
 

In Justifiable Homicide Cases, Race Disparity Extends To Women, Too
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Past studies have found that the notorious Stand Your Ground laws that authorize deadly force in self-defense exacerbate racial disparities. Among all cases, the Urban Institute has found that white-on-black homicides are 354 percent more likely to be found justified than white-on-white homicides in states with Stand Your Ground laws.
 

GA: Georgia Lawmakers Pass Sweeping Gun Bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The Georgia Senate passed a sweeping gun bill that will allow concealed carry in bars, airports (before TSA security checkpoints), places of worship of worship that ‘opt-in,’ and some government buildings.
 

GA: Georgia lawmakers pass controversial ‘guns everywhere’ bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The Georgia House passed a sweeping gun bill late Thursday night that allows firearms in bars, nightclubs, school classrooms and certain government buildings that lack security personnel or devices.
 

GA: NRA Lauds Georgia’s ‘Most Pro-Gun Bill in State History’
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The National Rife Association is praising Georgia lawmakers for passing HB 60 late Thursday night, which it’s calling “the most comprehensive pro-gun reform bill in state history.”

The NRA-backed bill cleared both chambers with a vote of 112-58 in the House and 37-18 in the Senate.
 

IL: Illinois school handout teaches Second Amendment requires gun registration
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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According to a workbook handed out to seventh grade students at Grant Middle School in Springfield, Ill., the Second Amendment only allows people to own "certain" guns if they have been registered, Infowars reported Friday. The parent who discovered the material confirmed to Examiner.com the handout's existence and said the school is being "bombarded with messages" about the material.

"This amendment states that people have the right to certain weapons, providing that they register them and they have not been in prison,” the handout says.
 

HI: Aloha: Federal court strikes down Hawaii’s ‘may issue’ practice
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Hawaii has some of the strictest concealed carry laws in the country. In 2012, just four private citizens applied for a concealed carry license in the city and county of Honolulu, while one applied in Maui County, and all five were denied at the discretion of the respective county police chief.

This case is one of plaintiff Christopher Baker, a resident of Honolulu County who applied for and was denied a concealed carry permit by the Honolulu Police Chief without reason or explanation.
 

IN: School groups oppose gun bill but expect Pence to sign it
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Some Indiana school superintendents and other education organizations across the state want Gov. Mike Pence to veto a bill that would make it legal for adults to keep handguns and other firearms in locked cars on school parking lots.

Yet, some of these opponents say Pence’s backing by gun-rights groups during his 12 years in Congress and his vocal support of the Second Amendment make it likely he’ll sign the measure into law despite their concerns.

The governor’s office isn’t saying what he’ll do. Pence spokeswoman Christy Denault declined to comment Friday on what action he would take. He has until Thursday to decide whether to sign the bill, veto it or let it become law without his signature.
 

PA: Scofflaw Governments May be Held to Account in Pennsylvania
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The problem is that there are no teeth to the law, because there are no penalties imposed on local governments who violate it. Consequently, there are over fifty local scofflaw governments in Pennsylvania. From nraila.org:

State firearms preemption was enacted by the Pennsylvania Legislature to avoid the possibility of 2,639 separate firearm laws across the Commonwealth. However, over recent years, nearly fifty local governments have enacted gun control ordinances in violation of the current state firearms preemption law.

House Bill 2011 has been proposed to remedy the situation. It is the lastest version of similar bills that have been put forward over the last four years.
 

MS: Hunting-supply tax relief goes to Bryant
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A “Second Amendment Weekend Holiday” bill headed to the governor would allow tax-free purchases of firearms, ammunition and hunting supplies the first weekend in September.

The Senate agreed Thursday to minor changes the House made to Senate Bill 2425. Gov. Phil Bryant, who says he will sign the legislation.

“Hunting, fishing and enjoying the outdoors are an essential part of the fabric of Mississippi, and I have worked to defend Second Amendment rights and protect our state’s outdoor heritage,” Bryant said Thursday. “This measure will help Mississippians access firearms and supplies to enjoy the outdoors, and I look forward to receiving and signing the bill.”
 

MS: DeSoto Co. planning to modify firearms ordinance
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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DeSoto County supervisors will modify language on firearms contained in a proposed new ordinance on the use of city parks and greenways.

“Although public safety is of ultimate importance, it was never the intent of the county Board of Supervisors to limit Second Amendment rights. After hearing the first concerns from the public, the board reviewed the language and agrees it surpasses the intention of the board to promote safety in county parks,” the Board of Supervisors said in a statement Thursday.
 

Feinstein launches new attack; should ATF be altered or abolished?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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This morning, the National Shooting Sports Foundation launched a nationwide campaign to counter a new effort by anti-gun California Sen. Dianne Feinstein to ban the importation of so-called “assault weapons” that she claims are not “generally recognized as particularly suitable for or readily adaptable to sporting purposes.”

Sen. Feinstein wants President Obama to “ensure that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) fully enforces the ban on the importation of these military-style firearms.”
 

AL: Sheriff: Bill passed by Senate dangerous
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The bill is expected to draw fire from detractors who say Alabama’s law is already too unrestrictive, and Covington County Sheriff Dennis Meeks agrees.

“This legislation is the most dangerous thing I’ve ever seen done,” Meeks said Thursday. “I can’t believe a legislator would be so naïve as to think that everyone who drives around with a loaded gun is a pillar of the community.”

With sheriff’s departments statewide tasked with issuing conceal-carry permits, the loss in revenue the bill’s change could bring has been a point of contention, but Meeks says the money is the least of his worries.
 

SC: Myrtle Beach removes hurdle for discharging firearms at military funerals
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Those wishing to honor military members or veterans in Myrtle Beach with a 21-gun salute at their funeral will no longer be required to go through the special event permitting process to get permission.

City Council passed an ordinance last week that allows firearms to be discharged at military ceremonies and funerals by giving the police department notice at least 24-hours ahead of time.
 

NM: N.M. grand jury rules killing was self-defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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An eastern New Mexico prosecutor says a grand jury has decided that a Texas man's killing of a 73-year-old Curry County rancher last summer during a confrontation over farm land was self-defense.
District Attorney Andrea R. Reeb announced Friday that a grand jury concluded there wasn't probable cause to charge 59-year-old David Brown of Friona, Texas, in the killing of Max Allen of Grady.
 

Why Rand Paul Is Sinking the Surgeon General Nominee
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The latest apparent casualty is Vivek Murthy, a 30-something British-born American doctor, whose parents are from India, and whose Ivy League credentials and activism on public-health issues includes co-founding Doctors for America, which launched in 2008 as Doctors for Obama.

Murthy is Obama’s nominee to become surgeon general, the nation’s top doctor and a mostly ceremonial post that occupants use to highlight and elevate health issues of national concern. Testifying before Congress, Murthy said he would focus on obesity, but Republican Sen. Rand Paul believes Murthy would use the post to “propagandize” on behalf of the Affordable Care Act and against the Second Amendment.
 

VA: Gov. McAuliffe Pushes Gun Control by Vetoing First Bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The action may seem modest, but this isn't McAuliffe's first gun control rodeo. During his gubernatorial campaign, he advocated for a ban on semi-automatic rifles and standard capacity magazines.

Cline is now hoping the General Assembly can override McAuliffe’s latest anti-gun action during its “veto session” on April 23.
 

The Magazine Issue and its Impact on Hunting
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The debate about high-capacity magazines was a Siamese twin to the issue of semi-automatic “assault weapons” for many years before the Newtown incident revived the cry for bans and restrictions on firearms and magazines such as the AR-15 and the standard capacity 30-round containers that feed it.

In some states, fast-tracked legislation to prohibit weapons such as the AR, which has become the most popular rifle in America, and the standard capacity magazines has resulted in successful recalls of anti-gun politicians in Colorado and to an ongoing volatile situation in Connecticut, where thousands of people have ignored a registration deadline.
 

FL: Warning shot bill has Scott waiting to see what happens
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Florida lawmakers are forging ahead with adding a provision to the Stand Your Ground law that would allow a "warning shot" to be fired instead of having to retreat from the threat of death or bodily harm.

The legislation is partially inspired by a Jacksonville case involving Marissa Alexander. The 33-year-old mother was sentenced to 20 years in prison after firing what she claims was a warning shot at her estranged husband.
 

AK: Alaska Senate panel OKs bill allowing concealed handguns on university campuses
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A controversial bill to allow people to carry concealed handguns on University of Alaska campuses has advanced from the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Senate Bill 176, authored by North Pole Republican Sen. John Coghill, would allow students, faculty, professors and visitors to conceal carry on campus as long as they are at least 21 and have a state concealed carry permit.

The Board of Regents currently limits firearms to locked vehicles or specially designated firearms lockers, provisions that Coghill and supporters of the bill said is a violation of the Second Amendment.
 

MS: Mississippi gun protection bill headed to Governor’s desk
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A Mississippi bill that would safeguard gun-owner rights during natural disasters and from local municipalities seeking to regulate gun possession is now headed to the governor’s desk for signature.

The bill, HB314, forbids confiscation of legally owned firearms in the event of emergency or natural disaster as well as provides for guns in public housing, passed the state Senate with amendments by a 40-11 vote and was confirmed in the House by a 103-18 vote on Wednesday.
 

Feds going after plastic-gun market
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives have been busy in California this month seizing inventories, computers and customer lists for the manufacturer and distributors of an unusual piece of plastic that the ATF says is a gun.

To understand what this is all about, first you need to know some basic facts about building guns. First, Americans have been legally manufacturing personal-use firearms in their basements, garages and backyard shops since the nation was founded. Only since 1968 have commercial manufacturers been required to be licensed, but anyone wishing to build a gun for their own personal use is free to do so under federal law.
 

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