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Newslinks for 6/18/2007

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Canada: Unexpected testimony ends trial in stabbing
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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Kenneth Arthur Potter was acting in self-defence when he stabbed Wallace John Ford to death in Springhill 18 months ago, a jury decided Tuesday.

The seven-woman, five-man Nova Scotia Supreme Court jury found the 25-year-old Springhill man not guilty of manslaughter and criminal negligence after Crown attorney Bruce Baxter conceded his star witness gave the accused the defence of self-defence.
 

NRA Competitor Gaining Ground
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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Last year at the annual conference of the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA), I caused a little ripple in the Force when I reported on a news event sponsored by the American Hunters & Shooters Association (AHSA), a new group that bills itself as an alternative gun-rights organization with “a real agenda to preserve our Second Amendment.” By ‘alternative,” the group means--and are not shy about saying it--they plan to compete head-on with the four-million-member National Rifle Association (NRA).
 

VA: Webb Admits To Owning Gun
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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Sen. Jim Webb said he owns the gun that an aide was arrested for carrying into the U.S. Capitol complex in March.

"It's my gun," Webb told the Richmond Times-Dispatch in an interview last week.

Webb previously had refused to say whether the gun was his, although his senior aide - Phillip Thompson - had told police the weapon belonged to the Democratic senator.
 

MO: Shooting of husband brings probation
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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A woman who said she accidentally shot her husband during a domestic altercation in 2005 was sentenced Thursday to probation.

...

"She does have a claim for self-defense," Flathead County Attorney Ed Corrigan said. "She, quite frankly, is unlikely to incur a further criminal history. I do believe the conviction for negligent homicide holds her accountable."
 

IL: Chicago Archdiocese Latest Target of Gun Lobby Pressure
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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Addressing the small crowd of community activists, reporters and gun violence victims Father Pfleger pledged to "snuff out legislators that are voting against our gun laws" and "call them out by name, by district."

As for the owner of Chuck's Gun Shop, John Riggio, who Pfleger says is hiding his identity behind a trust?

"We're going to find you and snuff you out," said the priest. "We're going to catch you and pull you out."
 

FL: Shooting at Weston hospital shows need for gun law, health officials say
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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A murder-suicide at the Cleveland Clinic Weston this month showed how easy it is to sneak a gun into a hospital, but health officials said Florida legislators have thwarted attempts to make it harder.

The Legislature for five years rejected bills that would outlaw bringing a gun into a health facility, a move that would clarify a legal gray area making it difficult for hospitals to take tougher steps. Hospitals and nurses pushing the bill stopped trying in 2005.
 

ME: Women should perhaps carry guns for protection
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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The scene is her leaving some place after dark, walking towards her car...someone is following her...is it a benign situation, or is the person following her a sexual predator? There's no chance to get to her car before he can get to her...what does she do? Ask if he's after her? What if he says, "yes"? Then what... yell for help? Dial 911? Too late.

Same scenario, except another woman is in her situation...she turns to face the potential threat, knowing she has a concealed firearms carry permit in her wallet and a gun in her coat pocket, available for instant use.
 

Gun Control Post Virginia Tech: The NRA Almost Gets It Right
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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I hate guns. I recognize their sad neccessity[sic], for law enforcement, and soldiers. But I have absolutely no comprehension how a human can enjoy killing a creature and call it sport. Some of my beliefs I am willing to call personal failings. I recognize that some may legitimately enjoy professional wrestling, whereas I think it's idiotic. But I own my feelings about guns. No one is going to change my mind.

I regularly hear from folks on an email list, many of them conservatives and libertarians, that guns are lovely pieces of engineering and should be appreciated. They prattle on about various loads and calibers. I think they are certifiably insane.
 

Phillipines: Guns unbanned and seized guns
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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This means that the guns were illegal and undocumented to begin with. Therefore, these guns were subject to confiscation upon sight, gun ban or no gun ban.

The only thing that the gun ban did, therefore, was to force those who’ve secured lawful clearance for firearm carry to leave their guns at home and take to the streets unsecured.
 

The Gun Control Debate
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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FMNN posted an article yesterday entitled “GOP's Ron Paul, Only Pres. Candidate for Gun Rights?” A longtime FMNN feedbacker responded with a reasoned anti-gun post, which FMNN then answered with various cites. The initial article, feedback and cites can all be seen below. They may well encapsulate some of the passion, facts – and distortions of fact – surrounding this important debate.
 

DC: Gun Sense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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Currently only 23 states participate in the system. The House bill would help states pay the cost of contributing to the database and withhold federal grants from states that do not comply. This nugget of rationality overcame the intensity of the gun control debate in America and emerged from the House with the strong backing of the Democratic leadership, leading Republicans and the National Rifle Association, all of whom deserve credit.
 

GOP's Ron Paul, Only Pres. Candidate for Gun Rights?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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This week, the House of Representatives passed by near-unanimous voice vote a bill that threatens the medical privacy and second amendment rights thousands of Americans. The lone GOP dissenter speaking out against the bill on the floor of the House? Presidential candidate and Congressman Ron Paul (R-Tex).

Ron Paul often speaks out on such critical issues, observers note, as part of a way of "leaving a record" documenting America's slide into what might increasingly be described as legislative fascism. This is one reason why Ron Paul campaigns for president mostly on the weekends. Unlike other GOP presidential candidates, he tries to be in Washington during the week so that he can comment on the bills that are passed...
 

OH: Rat-a-tat-tat! It's Bulletfest
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff

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MINERVA Down the scope of his World War I-era Mauser, Tony Otundo surveyed the field of washing machines, barbecue grills, tractors, junked boats and trucks before him. He settled on a tractor, he said, because there might be some gas in the tank. Otundo was looking for an explosion.

"I'd love to see another tractor blow up," said the Civil War re-enactor from Celina.
 

MI: Michigan House Rep. comments on HB 4759: victim disarmament zones
Submitted by:
Website: http://www.mcrgo.org/

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In 2000 when the Michigan Legislature originally passed concealed weapons legislation, they created so-called "gun free safe zones" to protect Michigan's citizens. The intent of such legislation is to provide an area where firearms are forbidden and thus make those areas "safer". In effect, two groups of people carry firearms in safe zones: police officers and criminals.

A real life game of "cops and robbers" plays out in these areas while law-abiding citizens are stripped of the ability to defend themselves and must rely on the state and the state alone. These gun-free safe zones are dangerous areas where criminals can target powerless citizens ...
 

NY: A Blast from the Past
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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Phoenix Police Chief Rod Carr carefully opened and closed the action, then took aim with his grandfather's 101-year-old, double-barrel shotgun in the kitchen of his Clay home. "It's a nice old piece," he said. "I've hunted, fished and trapped all my life. It's nice to have something to look at like this that your grandfather made with his own hands." Actually, the gun's parts were made by the former Syracuse Arms Company, with the exception of the stock. The company manufactured about 50,000 guns when it was open from 1893 to 1906.
 

IL: Two Months After Virginia Tech, Chicago Activists Protest Weak Gun Laws With 'Lie-In'
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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Parents and other concerned citizens today staged a protest to express the community's outrage over the shootings that took place at Virginia Tech two months ago today, and to protest the easy availability of guns to dangerous people. Known as a "lie-in," 32 volunteers dressed in black will lie down on the ground. About 32 people are murdered with guns every day in America, and 32 were murdered at Virginia Tech. The Chicago "lie-in" is the latest in a growing nationwide chain of similar protests.
 

Canada: Quebec considers limits on gun ownership
Submitted by: Doug Huffman
Website: http://www.scfirearms.org

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A bill introduced in Quebec Friday would restrict ownership of semi-automatic weapons to gun club members, and ban guns from school grounds.

The measure is named Anastasia's Law in memory of Anastasia DeSousa, a student killed in a shooting at Dawson College last year. Her killer wounded 20 others before killing himself.

The killer was a member of a Montreal gun club.

The law would require clubs to report changed or threatening behavior by members to the authorities.

Submitter's comment: Is this the goal of the NRA, social power and financial security? The analogy with the pre-Reformation church should be unmistakable.
 

NY: Bloomberg has gun lobby — and the presidency — in his sights
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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It started as a small group of American mayors worried about gun violence. It has since grown into a vociferous national organisation that has challenged the powerful US gun lobby and boosted speculation about the presidential prospects of Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York.
 

NY: Gun plan aims at wrong target
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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Crime and violence are problems that not only affect our state's largest cities but also have spilled into rural and suburban towns across the commonwealth. Gov. Ed Rendell thinks the answer to this problem is simple: Add more gun-control laws to free our streets of crime. Don't be misled by the governor or any of his supporters. Rendell recently joined with mayors and members of the General Assembly to support legislation that aims to take away our Second Amendment rights and punish law-abiding citizens. One proposal includes limiting gun purchases to one firearm a month, a plan based on speculation with no proof or support of decreasing crime.
 

NJ: Unintended Consequences of New Jersey’s “One Gun A Month”
Submitted by: Michael Brennan

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New Jersey’s so-called “one gun a month” bill (Assembly Bill A3511) is based on the absurd premise that criminals buy multiple crime handguns from licensed dealers. People with criminal intentions do not purchase with permits, get fingerprinted, and subject themselves to intrusive criminal and mental health background checks.

What criminal is going to go through that process and then illegally sell registered guns in bulk?

Putting aside the stupidity of passing such a law, serious unintended consequences will occur from enacting this bill. A3511:"

Question: If law enforcement officers are "issued" weapons why are they exempt from this law and able to purchase multiple "personal" weapons? Elitist crap!
 

NY: State background reporting a good gun monitoring tool
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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We have a problem with severe gun-control laws. Although many laws passed or proposed have undoubted merit, they also have a fatal flaw. The Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. Severely restrict or eliminate that part of the Bill of Rights and what is next - destruction of freedom of speech or separation of church and state? Although guns do kill when wielded by the wrong people, lawful citizens have a right to own them, and the way people use such tragedies as the slaughter at Virginia Tech to call for mandatory gun control is disturbing.
 

NRA shows rare sanity
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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Even the National Rifle Association could not ignore the massacre at Virginia Tech, where Seung-Hui Cho - a mentally troubled individual - slaughtered 32 students and faculty members with two guns he had easily purchased from a dealer. Last week, with the (gasp!) support of the NRA, the House passed legislation requiring states to supply a national FBI database with automated records of individuals judged to be a danger to themselves or others. That database would then be checked, one hopes, preventing guns from getting into the wrong hands.
 

Why Protect Shady Gun Dealers?
Submitted by: New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Website: http://www.nysrpa.org

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It should not require the shedding of innocent blood to shame Congress into showing the spine to take on the gun lobby, but that seems like a good description of the sorry state of affairs on Capitol Hill. Lawmakers appear to be on their way to fixing one glaring flaw in the law-enforcement system as a direct response to the massacre at Virginia Tech. But another change that is vital to public safety is facing heated resistance from opponents of gun control who seem to have trouble drawing a line between the right to bear arms and using them in crimes and selling them to criminals.
 

 QUOTES TO REMEMBER
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