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Student files lawsuit over FBI's GPS tracking
Submitted by: Anonymous

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WASHINGTON – A community college student who says he's never done anything that should attract the interest of federal law enforcement officials filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the FBI for secretly putting a GPS tracking device on his car.

Yasir Afifi, 20, says a mechanic doing an oil change on his car in October discovered the device stuck with magnets between his right rear wheel and exhaust. They weren't sure what it was, but Afifi had the mechanic remove it and a friend posted photos of it online to see whether anyone could identify it. Two days later, Afifi says, agents wearing bullet-proof vests pulled him over as he drove away from his apartment in San Jose, Calif., and demanded their property back.
 

IL: Carrying: The right to protect
Submitted by: Anonymous

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With the Illinois House of Representatives scheduled to vote on concealed carry firearm legislation on Tuesday, local law enforcement officials are coming out in favor of the bill.

McDonough County Sheriff Rick VanBrooker is one of 13 sheriffs in Illinois to serve on a legislative subcommittee voicing concerns about the bill to lawmakers.
 

NJ: Kidnap victim appeals to carry handgun
Submitted by: Anonymous

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A Newton pet food store owner kidnapped in front of his shop is appealing a judge's denial of his application to carry a handgun.
Jeffrey Muller, 60, applied for a permit after his harrowing ordeal in January 2010. Authorities said Muller, owner of J&G Pet Food Store, was the victim of mistaken identity by three men in search of another Jeffrey Muller who supposedly bilked an acquaintance out of a large amount of money.
State Police did a background check on Muller and initially approved his application. Permits to carry handguns in New Jersey need judicial approval, and last August, state Superior Court Judge Philip Maenza in Morristown denied the application.

 

DHS seeks systems for covert body scans, documents show
Submitted by: Anonymous

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Documents obtained Tuesday by the Electronic Privacy Information Center suggest that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has signed contracts for the development of mobile and static systems that can be used scan pedestrians and people at rail and bus stations and special event venues -- apparently at times without their knowledge.
 

NH: Weare police charge man for recording traffic stop
Submitted by: Anonymous

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WEARE – For the second time in less than a year, Weare police have charged someone with felony wiretapping for recording police activity.
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William Alleman, 51, of 140 Helen Dearborn Road, was charged Tuesday with interception of oral communication prohibited, which is the state's felony wiretapping law RSA 570-A.....

Police considered it wire-tapping because the call was being recorded by a voice mail service without the officer's consent.
 

Terror Arrest Does Not Justify REAL ID Revival
Submitted by: Anonymous

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The zeitgeist on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. may be for limited, constitutional government, but that doesn't mean that big-government conservatives aren't going to use the reprieve voters gave Republicans in the fall to once again advance big-government goals. On Monday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas), Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King (R-N.Y.) and Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security Subcommittee Chairman James Sensenbrenner (R-Wisc.) sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano encouraging her to fully implement our national ID law, the REAL ID Act of 2005.
 

Issa silence on ‘Project Gunwalker’ enabled by NRA inaction
Submitted by: David Codrea
Website: http://www.davidcodrea.com

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"In the week when CBS News aired two follow-ups to its groundbreaking 'Gunwalker' reporting, including an on-camera interview with a whistleblowing agent and a phone interview with Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry’s sister, in a week when The Los Angeles Times ran the story on its front page, and the story has been picked up by CNN, the BBC…NRA issues a nationwide 'alert' to its members that mentions not a word of any of this, let alone any call to action."
 

As some in media pick up on ‘Gunwalker,’ others remain (intentionally?) clueless
Submitted by: David Codrea
Website: http://www.davidcodrea.com

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"Meanwhile, it would appear regional management is stepping up to follow the marching orders from ATF’s chief of spin to 'proactively push positive stories this week, in an effort to preempt some negative reporting, or at minimum, lessen the coverage of such stories in the news cycle by replacing them with good stories about ATF.' OregonLive.com reports ATF’s Kelvin Crenshaw has released the Kraken and “proactively pushed” on cue... "
 

Grassley: Federal officials made whistleblower feel like skunk at picnic
Submitted by: David Codrea
Website: http://www.davidcodrea.com

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“The ATF agents who spoke with my staff warned their supervisors that this kind of risky operation would get someone killed,” Grassley writes. “Tragically, they were right."
 

NJ: Newark police director is named chairman of gun control subcommittee for U.S. lobbying group
Submitted by: Anonymous

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"Being as how I’m the guy who made such an issue of it, I said ‘We need to come out with a policy, we need to have an opinion on this,’ because we’re a pretty influential organization, especially in Congress," he said.

McCarthy will draft the group’s formal opinion on gun control, which he hopes will balance gun owners’ rights against public safety concerns.

"I think that we have an opportunity to bring the gun debate back to center and stop it from being so polarized," he said. "I believe you can protect John Q. Citizen’s second amendment right to carry a firearm in appropriate circumstances, and at the same time stop guns from flooding the streets of our cities where our children are being killed."

Submitter's note: He is going to work to make submachine guns illegal. Thought that was done already
 

TX: Is 20-year-old Mexican female chief seeking asylum in US?
Submitted by: Anonymous

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A city official of the town of Praxedis G. Guerrero denied police chief Marisol Valles Garcia is asking asylum in the U.S.
Valles Garcia, 20, made international headlines last year when she became a police chief in the violent Valley of Juarez.
On Thursday, Mexican news reports said Valles Garcia was asking for asylum in the U.S. after receiving death threats.
But town secretary Andres Morales said that information had not been confirmed.
"Right now, these are rumors," he said.
Morales said Valles Garcia requested some days off to attend personal matters concerning the health of her child.
Morales said Valles Garcia remains the police chief of the town and she is expected to be back at work on Monday.
 

OH: Buckeye Firearms Association's Linda Walker Runs for National Rifle Association Board of Directors
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Linda Walker, Buckeye Firearms Association's Central Ohio Chair, is campaigning for election to the National Rifle Association's Board of Directors. Ballots have been distributed to the NRA's four million members throughout the United States, and are due back to the organization by April 10, 2011.

As a member of the NRA's Board of Directors, Walker has promised NRA members that she would fight the encroachment of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms on the lawful use of firearms, "stop foolish registration schemes, encourage youth and women to participate in hunting and shooting sports, and do everything in my power to prevent the erosion our God-given rights."
 

AL: 2nd Amendment Supporters Rally in Magic City
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The 2nd Amendment protects the rights of citizens to bear arms. One Alabama organization is trying to make sure they get the full extent of those rights.

Alabama Open Carry (ALOC) is a grassroots organization dedicated to protecting and fighting for the rights of those who choose to wear their firearms in public.

"A lot of people, as soon as they see a firearm in the open they either, one, assume your a law enforcement officer, or that it's illegal, that you can't do that," says Jason Jones, president of ALOC.
 

UT: Off target
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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There are Second Amendment absolutists who fervently believe that they need not obtain a state permit to lawfully carry a concealed gun. To accommodate them, Rep. Carl Wimmer is sponsoring a bill in the Legislature that would allow anyone in Utah over the age of 21 who does not have a criminal record to carry a concealed weapon.
 

TX: 'Castle doctrine' doesn't prevent pain
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Carmen Glass sat beside her husband, Burnell, as the trial opened for Ray Lemes, a Northwest Side homeowner who is claiming a “castle doctrine” defense in the August 2007 shooting of Tracy Glass, 19, an unarmed college student from San Angelo. In Texas, a person is legally justified in shooting someone who enters his home with nefarious intent.

Some reports have suggested Glass might've gone to the wrong house. He was staying with his sister in an unfamiliar neighborhood and was legally drunk. Lemes' house looked similar.
 

TN: UT senate to vote on resolution against firearms legislation
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Faculty at the University of Tennessee have a message for the Legislature: We don't want to carry guns.

The Faculty Senate is looking to pass a resolution at its meeting today opposing state House and Senate bills that would allow permit-holding gun owners on the faculty and staff to bring their firearms to campus.

"Having a license doesn't make you trained to deal with a crisis, and the police are trained to deal with that, so they should be the ones with the guns," said senate past-President Toby Boulet, an engineering professor who is writing the resolution with fellow member Carole Myers.
 

OK: Oklahoma Pharmacist Case Tests Self-Defense Law
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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When Jerome Jay Ersland, has his day in court, Oklahoma's self-defense laws will be tested too. The 57-year-old-pharmacist was charged with first-degree murder as a result of shooting death that took place May 19, 2009.

Two teenage boys entered the Reliable Discount Pharmacy in Oklahoma City where Ersland worked, but Ersland was able to chase only one of the youths out the door of the store. The other youth, 16-year-old Antwun Parker, was shot by Ersland six times.
 

MI: We cannot change human nature, so we must defend ourselves
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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More guns in the hands of average people is the deterrent to crime. Even if you do not have a gun, the deterrent is still working, criminals do not know who has a gun, they only know that the probability is higher now. Thus, lower violent crime rates, few instances in which a gun actually has to be used in self-defense.

I hope it comes as no surprise to Professor Stratford that we on the pro-gun side of this argument are also anti-gun violence. But we know that we cannot change human nature. There have always been predators in our midst, they will take advantage of any weakness, unless they are deterred. We believe each of us is the most potent deterrent to crime if we take personal responsibility for our own self-defense.
 

TX: Another gunfight at OK corral?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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However, my concern is the current rage in the Texas Legislature to approve the carrying of licensed concealed weapons on college campuses. House Bill 1167 is sponsored in the House by Republican Representative Van Taylor of Plano, who also serves on the House Defense and Veterans Committee. He, along with other proponents, claims licensed carriers of weapons on campus could easily deter another tragedy like the one at Virginia Tech where 32 students perished at the hands of a lone gunman in 2007. Legislators speculate that if students in those classrooms had carried weapons, the death toll could have been less.
 

MD: House 'Gun Day' Highlights Stalemate in Assembly
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Up to 200 members of the pro-gun community are expected to swarm the committee hearing, said Paul Dembowski, president of the gun-rights group Maryland Shall Issue.

Showing up en mass to testify against gun restrictions is the best strategy to ward off new laws, Dembowski said. The group also floods the inboxes of committee members with emails in the days leading up to the hearing.

"Our people fight very good defense," Dembowski said, pointing to efforts that have killed past proposals to implement a statewide assault weapons ban."Conversely I don't think we do as good on offense to advance pro-gun legislation."
 

IL: Gun rights groups to test political strength
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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"Honestly, I think its time has come," says state Rep. Jehan Gordon, D-Peoria.

State Sen. Dave Koehler, D-Peoria, chief co-sponsor of one of six concealed carry bills introduced in the General Assembly this session, predicts some version of concealed carry will pass in the Senate - if it's called for a vote.

No concealed carry bill has made it out of a House committee since the 1990s, according to Richard Pearson, director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, a long-time lobby for concealed carry laws. But he believes something will reach the House floor.

"Something might happen this year, no doubt."
 

PA: House committee to vote Monday on slightly altered Castle Doctrine bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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State Rep. Scott Perry, R-Carroll Township, said the state House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Monday on the Castle Doctrine bill that he sponsored.

Under current law, the use of deadly force in self-defense is not justifiable when safe retreat is possible, unless a person is attacked in his or her home or workplace. Perry's legislation would remove the requirement to retreat before using deadly force outside the home or workplace, as well.

The term Castle Doctrine refers to the adage that a man's home is his castle.

"Right now, the scales are tipped slightly in favor of the criminals," Perry said.
 

PA: 1 of 9 in Luzerne County carry gun
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A Luzerne County Community College student brought a gun to class Tuesday, but it's likely no one would have known about the firearm in his coat pocket if he didn't act erratically in class.

While the man's possession of a gun on a college campus was a crime, being near someone carrying a concealed weapon in Luzerne County is actually quite likely and usually legal - at the supermarket, an office building, a bar or even church.

Records show 26,343 people in Luzerne County have a permit to carry a concealed gun in Luzerne County, which officials say allows them to carry their firearms concealed at most places open to the public, with some exceptions, such as court buildings, schools, prisons, casinos and airports.
 

CA: Ted Lieu’s Gun Free bill - SB 661 An example of Constitutional Overbreadth
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Ted Lieu, the recently elected State Senator from Los Angeles’ 28th District has introduced a bill which would expand California’s unconstitutional gun free school zone from 1,000 feet to 1,500 feet.

...

The South Bay Open Carry group has created a partial map of school zones in the South Bay of Los Angeles. It does not include other areas where Open Carry is banned within the city such as parks, government buildings, the Pier Shopping Center and the Galleria Mall. School zones are represented in black on the map.

Ed.: Link to the map is in the article.
 

AZ: Are we taking our right to bear arms a little too far?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The Second Amendment of the United States Constitution guarantees Americans the right to bear arms, a right the courts have ruled applies to individuals and not just an organized militia.

But does this mean it's a good idea for us all to carry loaded guns wherever we choose?

The Arizona Senate - under the leadership of Senate President Russell Pearce, R-Mesa - apparently thinks so. The Senate voted 21-8 Thursday to allow gun owners to ignore "no weapons" signs in most public buildings if those buildings lack metal detectors or security personnel to screen visitors with hand-held wands.
 

IA: Bills that survived or died in Friday's funnel
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Here’s a list of bills that survived or died in Friday’s funnel, a legislation-winnowing deadline. Not every bill is listed (including most tax and spending bills). How can you tell which party is behind a bill? House files that survived are backed by Republicans; surviving Senate bills by Democrats.

Here’s a list of bills that survived or died in Friday’s funnel, a legislation-winnowing deadline.

Ed.: Includes a long list of pro- and anti-gun measures that are dead for this session, or remain alive.
 

 QUOTES TO REMEMBER
Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. — LORD ACTON (1887)

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