Month: January 2020

The Future of Gun Control: Virginia and Beyond

The Future of Gun Control: Virginia and Beyond

Gun Control 2020 – The Post-Constitutional Decade

Unless you have been mimicking the proverbial ostrich, you are probably aware of the bevy of gun control bills recently introduced in the Virginia legislature. The proposals range from restricting privately owned gun ranges to law enforcement use only (but only if no one nearby feels threatened) to banning the possession of any firearm that is not a bolt or lever action. By the way, there is no “grandfather” provision where you can retain listed firearms obtained before the proposed ban without government oversight. Only if you register yourself and your firearm with the State, and receive its permission to possess it will you be able to keep your legally obtained property.

Virginia: A Test Case for Gun Control Advocates

Do not be deceived. This flurry of Virginia anti-gun legislation is a test balloon to gauge the political will and muscle of Virginia’s Second Amendment supporters, and by extension, the political will and muscle of gun owners nationwide. Passage of even a modicum of the proposed Virginia bills likely will result in other like-minded states following suit with similar legislation, as well as federal legislation. Damn the electorate–full speed ahead! Other 2A advocates suggest 12 more states are ready to launch similar efforts depending on the outcome in Virginia.

Everytown for Gun Safety Pledges 60 Million Dollars

It appears that the Bloomberg backed (read financed by) Everytown for Gun Safety has pledged 60 million dollars to the 2020 election cycle. That figure does not include Bloomberg’s personal contributions to anti-gun candidates. It is likely that states assessed by Bloomberg’s political machine as vulnerable for flipping from conservative to liberal will be the targets–that suggests “swing” states, like North Carolina. Bloomberg’s position is that no one — NO ONE — should have a gun, except police officers, the military, and of course personal protective service “professionals” for elites such as he. Hmm, can anybody say, “Germany, 1932,” or “Venezuela?”

Demigods and Other Persona

Bloomberg, in one of his political ads, called President Trump a “demigod.” The definition of a demigod is “one so preeminent in intellect, power, ability, beneficence, or appearance as to seem to approach the divine.” Bloomberg’s approach to abridging the electorate’s rights protected by the Constitution through his political clout, monetary contributions to achieve his purposes, and the “I know better than thou what is good for thee” attitude suggests he is no less a demigod than the one he accuses.

After the recent Texas church shooting, where a madman  killing people with a shotgun was stopped by a member of the congregation, Bloomberg pontificated, “It’s the job of law enforcement to have guns and to decide when to shoot. You just do not want the average citizen carrying a gun in a crowded place. . . .” It very nearly sounded as if he wanted a Southerland Springs-like episode to entrench his “guns are evil” mantra.

Other anti-gun sycophants have been recorded as saying, “[Repeal of the Second Amendment] will happen. We’re not going to allow guns for anyone, anywhere, any time.” Except of course, for police, military, and their own corps of private bodyguards.

“Sue ‘Til They’re Blue”

The National Redistricting Action Fund, backed by Barack Obama and Eric Holder (the same of “Fast and Furious” fame) repeatedly sues, through judges sympathetic to their cause, to overturn gerrymandering–their term for political districts drawn by Republicans. Instead, they want to institute their own form of gerrymandering that suits their agenda–turning the state blue, as they did in Virginia–while blocking their opponents.

So, what has redistricting to do with rights protected by the Bill of Rights? Can you say Virginia? By creating uneven district lines that favor liberal voting patterns, anti-gun legislators from centers of high population can create a political and legislative juggernaut that can run rough-rod over the state’s rural areas that typically are more conservative.

Local Resource

There is a group in North Carolina that is attempting to stand up to the Bloomberg-Obama-Holder ilk, preserve the Bill of Rights, and stop North Carolina from becoming another Virginia: Grass Roots North Carolina. The future of gun control, for good or ill, depends on an informed and engaged electorate.

 

Range Safety

Range Safety

(Originally posted in March 2018. As we begin a new year, this is an appropriate re-post.)

Range Safety

The paramount concern when conducting firearms training or practice is safety. The central premise of continually observing firearm safety is if we observe the fundamental safety rules in all our dry-fire training, practice, cleaning, and maintenance, then doing so in a live fire environment will be second nature. Range safety is the primary concern in a live fire environment.

Safety Rules

There are several versions, or lists of safety rules, but they all revolve around the same premise: keeping the shooter, and bystanders safe. All ranges will have some variation of the following rules:

a. Always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction.
b. Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
c. Always keep the action open and the firearm unloaded until ready to shoot.
d. Know your target and what is beyond.
e. Be certain the firearm is safe to operate.
f. Know how to use the firearm safely.
g. Use only the correct ammunition for your firearm.
h. Wear adequate ear and eye protection.
i. Never use alcohol or drugs before or while shooting.
j. Store firearms securely so they are not accessible to unauthorized persons when they are not in use.

Most ranges post their safety lists conspicuously to remind participants of their responsibility for range safety, and most ranges also post procedures and telephone numbers to call in case of an emergency.

General Range Rules

Every range has some set of range rules to ensure a safe shooting experience. The following list is a minimum set of ranges rules that all shooters should observe, regardless of the range at which they are shooting.

a. Know and obey all range commands.
In many instances, ranges are informally organized. That is, there may be no range officer, and no centralized form of range control that stops all participants from shooting when targets require attention, for example. When there is no centralized range control, all participants must coordinate among themselves when the range is safe.

b. Know where others are at all times, whether they are shooting or not.
Shooters often bring people with them who do not shoot, but simply observe; be aware of where they are as well.

c. Shoot only at authorized targets.
Some ranges have restrictions on the distances at which targets may be engaged. For example, steel, or reactive targets may have a minimum distance from which they may be shot. Other ranges may prohibit “head” shots to prevent shooting into ceilings, or over berms.

d. Unload, open the action, remove the magazine and ground and/or bench all firearms during a cease-fire. Some ranges require a “empty chamber indicator,” a device that is inserted into a firearm’s chamber that prevents a round from being chambered, and is obviously visible, during cease fires.

Empty chamber indicator (ECI)
Pistol with inserted ECI

 

 

 

 

 

 

e. Do NOT handle any firearm or stand at the firing line where firearms are present while others are down range.
Virtually all ranges have a prominently marked safety line (a firing line that is usually painted red) that participants must not cross when firing is under way. Some ranges may have a secondary safety line behind the firing line, behind which non-shooters must stand.

f. Always keep the muzzle pointed at the backstop or bullet trap. Never allow the muzzle to point in any direction whereby an inadvertent discharge would allow the escape of a projectile into an outer area.

Range safety is an individual responsibility. In most cases, disregarding safety or range rules result in ejection from the range, and may result in prolonged temporary, or even permanent, bans.