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Publicly Confronting the City on Gun Checking Policy at Libraries

from Tim Weaver & Rick DeStephens

VP and Phoenix Rep from Brassroots

January 11, 2001

And now, for something completely different.

Jay McKim, Rick DeStephens and Me (Tim Weaver), decided to pay a visit to Glendale's elected officials to protest the city's current weapons checking policy. My account was play-by-play and rather boring, so what we have next is the color commentary by Grand Master Rick:

The Three Hoarsemen of the Apothecary (uh, that's us - Tim) approached the Glendale City Council Chamber ready to do some damage. It was after the Walmart flare-up and the Chamber was no longer packed with irate citizens fighting against low prices and blue vests. Our task: to spew forth three separate speeches in the mandated five minutes each. Easy enough, except our speeches were a good two minutes longer than that. We would have to talk quickly, and not look back.

We sat down in the plush chamber. Sitting close, but not too close…if you know what I mean. None of us offered to check any weapons, and I don't know who, if any were armed. There were two PD Sgts sitting at opposite ends near the back. We felt well protected. The meeting started and they went through the motions of good government. A few TUGsters trickled in over time. The meeting was broadcast over Public Access Channel 11 complete with Closed-Captioning. We wagered that the captioner would not be able to keep up with us. After a half-hour or so, it was time to get to the off-agenda stuff…that would be us.

Through near random chance, Jay McKim's blue card was pulled first, which is how I would have wanted it. Jay gave a workman-like overview of the problem and its solution. Nothing fancy, with language even a recalcitrant City Manager with a PhD could understand. Jay speechified with precision. Nary a stutter. The looks on the Councilmens' faces were very neutral, given away only by their consistent head-scratches (some merely had mouths agape).

Then it was my turn. I approached the microphone and began to spew forth words at about three-times normal speaking voice and probably about 50% faster than I needed to. I tried to look up to make eye contact and each time lost my place or omitted words. I found that the meaning of a sentence is totally reversed if you don't read the word "not." My speech, unlike Jay's, was not designed to lay out the situation. It was to lay out a work assignment for the City of Glendale. I asked questions. Many, many questions and presented several logical tests. Oh yeah, I requested that the City of Glendale conduct an anonymous poll of line cops to see how many approve of this stupid weapons checking policy. We'll have to submit the questions real quick-like.

I walked away as Tim Weaver's name was called. While Jay laid the ground work and I spread the confusion, Tim hit 'em with both barrels of legal analysis that named names and took no prisoners. In my favorite part, he took an excerpt from a July 2000 council meeting where not one, but two councilmen showed their doubt of then assistant and now acting City Attorney, Rick Flaaen's claim that Arizona's CCW only allowed carry of handguns and did not apply to other weapons.

Tim showed that the councilmen's doubts were verified. And since Mr. Flaaen got those parts wrong…. well, Tim could show how the other parts are wrong just as well.

It was very ugly. Pin-dropping kind of silence. We received no commentary other than the "Thank you, Mr. McKim/DeStephens/Weaver."

We sat back and waited. As Providence would have it, the next speaker was, well, heaven-sent. She was a senior citizen. She (Ginny) was there to praise the PD for their gang bust the week before. Kudos all around. Then she went off the reservation and told the council that she was the victim of a violent assault and since then had always traveled with her revolver (actually, the quote was "my dog and my trusty gun" - Tim).

The Council braced. In short, she said that she was in agreement with the young boys who spoke earlier (that would be us). She also told them that she was once confronted by a Glendale PD Sgt. who told her that she really shouldn't be carrying a gun. That Sergeant is one Mark Smith. You can tell Chief of Police David Dobrotka how you feel by calling him at 623-930-3051 or 623-930-3059. You can e-mail him at ... well, hell, here are a whole bunch of e-mail addresses for Glendale.

Tell them what you think about the checking policy (gun taken miles away, not brought back, you have to come get it and the keep the paper work with your gun serial # on it).

Tell them that their police should not be telling crime victims to disarm...

The Big Whigs:

PD Chief
David Dobrotka
DDobrotka@ci.glendale.az.us

City Manager
Marty Vanacour
MARTY@ci.glendale.az.us

Mayor
Elaine Scruggs
MayorScruggs@ci.glendale.az.us

Assist City Manager
Ed Beasley
ED@ci.glendale.az.us

PD Sgt
Jim Toomey
JToomey@ci.glendale.az.us

PD Lieutenant
Matthew Lively
MLively@ci.glendale.az.us

Miscellaneous Glendale Cityfolk

Phil Lieberman
LIEBERMAN@ci.glendale.az.us

Tom Eggleston
EGG@ci.glendale.az.us

Joyce Clark
JClark@ci.glendale.az.us
>

Jerry McCoy
MCCOY@ci.glendale.az.us

Manny Martinez
MMartinez@ci.glendale.az.us

Michelle Resler
MResler@ci.glendale.az.us

Pam Kavanaugh
PAM@ci.glendale.az.us

Steve Frate
SFrate@ci.glendale.az.us

See you Wednesday!

TUG Meeting
Wednesday, Jan 17
Country Harvest Buffet
s/w Corner Priest & Elliot
Tempe, Arizona
6-7 eat, 7-9 meet and only $8.95 for all you can eat (+ tax)

 

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Americans who value freedom had better be more concerned about the gun control crowd than the criminals. The criminals want your money. The Neo-Totalitarians want your freedom. — Charlie Reese

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