Friday, October 21, 2016
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
This Will Be a Historic (and Terrifying) Election for Gun Control
Donald Trump is willing to go where few other presidential candidates have gone when it comes to gun rights.
When he ran for reelection in 2012, Barack Obama never talked about gun control. That’s almost hard to remember now, after Newtown transformed Obama and he spent massive political capital trying to make Congress act on comprehensive reform. While Obama has since pledged not to even campaign for Democrats who don’t support gun-control legislation, his speech at the Democratic convention in Charlotte four years ago never alluded to gun violence.
This was no small feat, considering mass acts of gun violence shook the country throughout the summer of 2012. After the Aurora, Colorado, theater shooting in July killed 12 people and wounded scores more, Obama said only that he wanted “to arrive at a consensus around violence reduction—not just of gun violence, but violence at every level, on every step, looking at everything we can do to reduce violence.” He proposed no new gun reforms.
Less than a month later, when six people were shot and killed at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, Obama again declined to make gun safety a campaign issue. Reporters asked White House Press Secretary Jay Carney if the president wanted new laws, and Carney essentially said no. “We need to take common-sense measures that protect Second Amendment rights and make it harder for those who should not have weapons under existing law from obtaining weapons,” he replied.
The upcoming presidential election will be dramatically different, as dueling speeches from Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton this past weekend demonstrated. Like few other elections before it, 2016 will feature gun control as a huge and explosive issue.
Clinton spoke at the Trayvon Martin Foundation on Saturday after meeting with 60 mothers who lost children to gun violence. “At long last, we must do something about the gun violence that stalks communities and terrorizes families. And this is on the minds of every one of us here tonight, as we remember all of the young people who have been lost,” Clinton said. “This problem isn’t going away.”
For months, Hillary Clinton has made guns a central theme of her campaign. One of every fourtelevision ads she ran in New Hampshire were about gun control. She has regularly met with victims of gun violence, particularly mothers, and unveiled a comprehensive gun-control planlast October. This is the toughest stance of any Democratic candidate since at least Bill Clinton in 1996, who invited James and Sarah Brady to speak in prime time at the DNC, though Hillary’s proposed reforms are much more far-reaching.
Beyond the policy merits, her team clearly saw this as a political winner against Senator Bernie Sanders, who has a checkered voting record on gun rights and hasn’t yet bothered to release a gun-control plan, despite promising to do so. And it may continue to be a winner against Trump—wide majorities of voters favor universal background checks for gun owners. Gun control is a big issue for several critical demographic groups, including independent women voters: 51 percent want stronger gun laws, while only 6 percent want laws to be weakened, according to polling from the pro-reform Americans for Responsible Solutions. Sixty percent of women voters overall want stronger laws.
Trump’s approach to wooing these voters during his speech to the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, on Friday was comparatively ham-handed. “Whether it’s a young single mother in Florida or a grandmother in Ohio, Hillary wants them to be defenseless. Wants to take away any chance they have of survival,” he said. “In trying to overturn the Second Amendment, Hillary Clinton is telling everyone, and every woman living in a dangerous community, that she doesn’t have the right to defend herself.”
Trump then immediately declared, “My poll numbers with women are starting to go up, I never thought of it. This should really lift them up.”
Don’t be fooled by the clumsiness of that attempt. During his speech to the NRA Trump also proved adept at exploiting the deep undercurrents of xenophobia, fear, and aggression that have long underpinned the modern right-wing gun movement. Several times, my hair stood up.
Trump brazenly proclaimed that Obama released hordes of violent criminals onto the streets. “President Obama pushed for changes to sentencing law that released thousands of drug-trafficking felons and gang members who prey on civilians,” he said. “This is Hillary Clinton’s agenda too, to release the violent criminals from jail. She wants them all released. She wants people released that you wouldn’t want to walk on the street with, you wouldn’t want to look at.”
The only protection, Trump declared, is more guns. And Trump quickly went from the light coding of “gang members” to more explicit racial agitating, asserting that the country was under siege by violent undocumented immigrants. “Many of these are also—I’m sure you’re not going to be surprised to hear this—illegal immigrants,” he said. “This was tragic. A 65-year-old veteran, a woman who was a great woman, raped, sodomized and killed by an illegal immigrant. Wasn’t supposed to be here. We’re going to straighten it out.”
This sort of fear-mongering and rank exploitation of racial anxieties isn’t new for Trump, but it’s terrifying to see him fuse it with the NRA movement to loosen gun laws and put weapons in the hands of every American who wants one. Wayne LaPierre hasn’t been afraid to do the exact same thing, but, like no presidential candidate in recent memory, Trump is ready to take the show mainstream. (The toughest line of Mitt Romney’s speech to the same NRA conference in 2012 was probably, “It is time to elect a president who will defend the rights President Obama ignores or minimizes.”)
And Trump is clearly unconcerned with the ramifications of his rhetoric. In a riff that somehow didn’t receive widespread condemnation, he mused about disarming Clinton’s Secret Service protection. “We’ll also call [for] them [to] let their bodyguards immediately disarm. They should immediately disarm,” Trump said. “ And let’s see how good they do.”
When these two candidates meet in the general-election arena, the NRA and the burgeoning gun-reform movement will have the two strongest respective champions imaginable. It’s hard to say at this early vantage point how the debate will play out, and to whose benefit, though based on polling around the issue, I’d bet Clinton.
But the gun control debate is also vulnerable to rapid (and unpredictable) shifts in public opinion because of high-profile shootings. If something like Aurora were to happen again, you can be assured neither Trump nor Clinton would ignore its relation to gun control. Current events might make the gun issue even more volatile than it already is.
And if we needed a reminder, as Trump was speaking about disarming the Secret Service in Louisville, a man with a gun charged the White House gate and was shot several times by agents.
Sunday, October 16, 2016
1. Bathroom Protocol while Carrying Your Gun
2. Easy Access & Storage of Many Holsters & Mags
3. Easy & Quick Concealed Carry of Gun for Travel & Short Trips That Occur Spur-of-the-Moment
4. Wall Anchors to Protect .22 Rimfire Gun’s Firing Pin & Chamber
Monday, October 10, 2016
What Do You Do After You Have Your Concealed Carry Permit?
Louisiana- (Ammoland.com)- You already know that we have the human right to defend ourselves. Let’s say you have met the all the legal requirements to carry a firearm in public. You’ve finally joined the ranks of 13 million other US citizens who carry. What comes next? What is morally required of you to be a responsible gun owner now that you have your permit? Since concealed carry is a right, I’m not advocating stricter legal requirements. I’m asking you to think about the practical responsibility we assume as we carry a gun.
What comes next after you have the government permission slip?
Many states require a simple course in basic firearms safety to receive your license. That means you were told how to safely handle a gun.. at least once. I hope you remember those rules. I want you practice them because firearms handling is a perishable skill rather than an abstract idea. Being safe with a firearm is a matter of developing and maintaining safe habits.
There are additional skills you should develop that go beyond safe handling of a firearm. That doesn’t mean that you ignore or “outgrow” the safety rules. It means there are skills you need to effectively defend yourself and those you love. I’m not saying this as some high speed ninja-competitor, but rather as an old, slow, self-defense dinosaur. Here are a few of the skills you need, now that you carry concealed.
You need to be able to quickly and safely present your firearm from a concealed holster. You don’t have to be up to competition standards, but you have to develop your skills so you can smoothly present a firearm without thinking. You need to present from concealment even if you often carry off-body in a purse or bag. Presenting from concealment is a very different activity than methodically shooting a gun from a bench at a shooting range.
You need professional training.
A professional instructor explains and demonstrates presenting a loaded firearm from concealment. The instructor watches as you demonstrate the skill. The instructor gives you feedback before you practice on your own. Learning is easy IF you are willing to be corrected and learn from your mistakes. “Presentation” is neither required for most carry licenses, nor should it be. Then again, that license in your pocket isn’t much good if you can’t safely and quickly present a loaded gun.
Speed or Accuracy, or a Little of Both-
Experience shows that physical attacks happen quickly. Most of us can shoot quickly or accurately, but not both at the same time. There are shooting exercises that push us to shoot accurately. Others, train us to shoot fast. Developing your skills is only part of the purpose of these exercises. These exercises help you recognize when accuracy is paramount or when speed is most important. It is your experience that counts.
What is an easy shot for you may require time and concentration for me.
Shooting in Close-Contact and on the Move-
Most self-defense incidents occur at a distance of under three yards and take less than three seconds. That is far different from the target shooting we’re used to. We should be moving as we draw. If the distance is close enough, we should not need to align the sights of our handgun for the first close-in shots. We didn’t learn about close-contact shooting in our concealed carry classes. But this is the typical situation we’re likely to see in a self-defense situation.
Shoot Under Pressure-
Using lethal force for self-defense will be stressful. Stress also makes fools of us all. We can learn to handle measured amounts of stress as we train. Forget the Hollywood or military idea of training with an instructor yelling at you. At first the stress may be as simple as shooting while an instructor corrects your performance. Later, it will involve shooting while you are timed.
Move, Shoot, and Look Around-
Criminals don’t want a fair fight. They don’t fight one on one. The average number of attackers is 2.3 That means we have to look for the other guys after we present a firearm. If you have not done it yet, let me tell you that is hard to take our eyes off a threat.. even if the “threat” is a cardboard target. That is why we practice moving to a safer position and looking around. You have to look behind you without waving a gun around. That is another thing you’ll learn and demonstrate in a class.
Make Simple Compromises and Shoot-
We don’t always get the fight we want, but we have to meet the challenges we’re given. We have to learn to shoot the gun one handed because we might be holding onto a loved one with our other hand. We might not have time to put a child into a safe place before we defend them. Are you effectively disarmed because you picked up a baby?
Normally, we practice shooting while we stand upright, but we’d really rather be crouched behind a concrete column or kneeling behind a planter. We are likely to be attacked at night so it is important to learn how to hold and use a flashlight while we have a gun in our hand. The advantage of these defensive positions might be enough to end a fight before it begins, so it is important to learn and practice them.
These are a few of the skills you want to have now that you have a license to carry concealed. These skills don’t require great athletic strength or speed. All of them require practice. Skills like these are easy to learn from a good course.. now that you know they are out there. One of the best things about a training courses is meeting responsible firearms owners who take training and practice.
Be one of them!
Tuesday, October 4, 2016
Danger Now: The First 48 Hours After a Self-Defense Shooting
The two days after you’ve been involved in a lethal force encounter will be as trying as any you’ve likely endured. Like all things self-defense, it’s better to consider your options now than to wait until it might be too late.
» YOU’VE TRAINED FOR THIS DAY. The crossroads of danger and preparation have intersected, and you’ve ended the life of someone who threatened yourself, your family or your home. After the shooting stops and the smoke clears, there is a lifeless or injured body lying in front of you. In a split second, you saved a life — your own, your family’s or someone in grave danger. Guess what? You’re not out of danger yet. This is where the most uncomfortable limbo starts. Will you be charged with involuntary manslaughter, second-degree murder, reckless endangerment or a host of other criminal charges by some crusading district attorney? Or will the matter be closed as a justifiable homicide as a result of self-defense? The first 48 hours after any self-defense shooting will very likely determine whether your home is where your family is or if the state will provide you shelter in the ol’ Graybar Hotel. You’ve mentally scripted and rehearsed every angle of attack for the self-defense action you’ve taken, but have you prepared for the legal battle that could ensue?
The actions described in this article are simply non-negotiable. Stick to the script or be prepared to spend enough money to put your attorney’s children through college. There is no guarantee that the advice given in this article will keep you out of jail, but it should greatly improve your odds and force any hot-shot district attorney to consider whether it’s worth the time, money and judicial resources to attempt to get a conviction when your actions can be reasonably justified. The following steps are designed to avoid arrest, an indictment by a grand jury or, the most humiliating of all, a ruinous civil suit by the family of the lowlife perpetrator who’ll claim that you used unnecessary and deadly force to stop their kin from making you a crime statistic. Let’s work through this chronologically.
Shots Fired, Man Down
Your immediate actions here are some of the most important elements of any judicial action law enforcement might decide to take. According to any number of statistical sampling, the average response time for the police to appear is between 8 and 11 minutes. During this time, you need to clear your head and take some critical mental notes. First, holster your weapon when police arrive. The last thing you need is a police officer walking onto the scene, seeing you with a drawn weapon and shooting you before you have time to proclaim your innocence. Make sure you can also tell police where the perpetrator’s weapon is. The last thing you want is someone picking it up and leaving, thereby making you appear to have shot an unarmed person.
Hopefully there will be witnesses there, so someone will have called 911. You do not necessarily want a voice record of you calmly calling the police after you’ve shot someone. Emergency dispatch operators are trained to keep you on the phone and to try to extract as much information as possible. This tape will be played nationally, so don’t give a prosecutor the opportunity to tell a jury that you were cold-blooded and clear-headed after the shooting.
Make mental notes of the witnesses and their positions to the shooting and the aftermath. Create a mental grid of where people are standing. My suggestion is to look around you and pretend you’re standing on a piece of paper. Mentally divide the paper into four squares, count how many people there are in each square and try to guess how far away from you they are.
The crime scene will be scoured, and the homicide detectives will be taking statements from each witness. You want to make sure someone who was 30 feet away doesn’t swear that they heard every syllable of conversation between you and the perpetrator. You want to be able to recall if witnesses were close enough to see the shooting and, if necessary, attempt to impeach their testimony.
Don’t Touch the Crime Scene
This will only aggravate the police and make you look like a suspect, or worst of all, create grounds for arresting you for hiding evidence or tampering with the scene.
Don’t Reach for that Card in Your Wallet You Picked Up at the Gun Store that Tells You What to do if You Shoot Someone
Some people think that handing responding officers a pre-printed card with a statement is the best substitute for memorizing your rights. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Some hotshot district attorney might try to prove that this was premeditated and that you were looking for a victim. Invoke your right to have an attorney present during questioning and wait for his arrival.
Ask Someone to Call for an Ambulance
If your attacker is still alive, you want to demonstrate that you’re not a stone-cold murderer. Stay still, observe and if anyone asks you if you’re OK, tell them you think you might be in shock. Don’t have any sort of discussion with bystanders or witnesses. Don’t ask if they saw the whole thing, if they will tell the police what happened or anything else. Everything that happens after the bullet left the gun is now evidence.
When the Police Arrive, Don’t Answer Questions Without Your Attorney Present
They will start asking you a battery of questions including how many times you fired, what the other person was doing to provoke your reaction and if you are licensed to carry a concealed weapon. Don’t consent to a search (they’re going to do it anyway), and if you’re with family members, tell them not to answer any questions until they too have spoken with an attorney. Cooperate with the police to the barest minimum — but respectfully. Tell them you need to speak to your lawyer before you make any statements. (Never, ever say, “I think I need to talk to my lawyer.” This will allow them to continue questioning you.) If an ambulance hasn’t arrived, ask for one for yourself as well as the perpetrator.
If the police inform you that you’re under arrest, politely but unequivocally decline to answer any questions without your lawyer present. You need to give your attorney and yourself time to react to the situation. Going to the hospital and being checked for shock, injury and any other possible reaction will help you clear your head and prepare for the days to come. If the police decide to lock you up, which is a probability, be mentally prepared to stay there until you’ve had a bail hearing. Don’t talk to any inmates if you can possibly avoid it; they would sell you into slavery to reduce their sentence.
Contact Your Lawyer When You’re Alone
You don’t need anyone overhearing you tell your lawyer you killed a lowlife and need representation. This is a conversation that should take place face to face without any observers. Before your meeting and at your earliest convenience, write down everything you remember.
Prepare a Statement of What Occurred as Soon as Possible
Write down every detail you can remember on paper. What words were spoken? What actions caused you to draw and shoot? How long was the confrontation? How many witnesses were there? Where were you coming from and where were you going? What were you wearing? When did you and the perpetrator draw your weapons?
All of this information is going to be pulled from other witnesses, so you need to have your story straight and logically formatted. If there is a trial, you might need to testify, so your attorney will rehearse with you multiple times to avoid an ambush.
The Morning After
Killing someone in self-defense makes a great news piece. As they say in the press, “If it bleeds, it leads.” If you’re allowed to go home, you might wake up to find camera crews on your lawn, photographers looking through your windows and other gawkers wondering what happened. This is when rumors begin and the full-bore investigation gets started. Have someone in your family call the police and tell them that there are news crews trespassing on your property. If they’re on the sidewalk or the street, leave them alone.
Never speak to the media or have any family members speak to them. Even if they are in your face when you leave your house, do not answer anything no matter how much they provoke you. George Zimmerman gave an interview with Sean Hannity, and the special prosecutor used it as evidence against him.
Meet With Your Lawyer the Day After
Prepare to tell your story in painful detail. Leave out nothing. Your lawyer is sworn to secrecy, and she can’t protect you without knowing absolutely everything that happened. Your lawyer will call the police and ask for any information related to the incident, including witness statements, ballistics testing and whether there is an assistant district attorney now assigned to the investigation. Additionally, your lawyer will contact the police and ask if charges are going to be issued against you, whether a grand jury will be convened and if a list of witnesses is available. Realistically, none of this will be given out until actual charges are initiated, but proactive legal work might help avoid a trial.
Work with your attorney to find out anything and everything about the perpetrator. She will ask for discovery if you’re charged, and it will all come out, but a running start might help reinforce the reality that you were assaulted by a repeat offender.
Stay Out of Sight
This might sound difficult, but it is not impossible, and time is your friend here. I would recommend avoiding anyone for two weeks if possible. You want this to become old news replaced by the latest incident in order to prevent continued front-page coverage. Don’t talk to the media, police or anyone other than your lawyer about what happened.
Check All of Your Weapons for Proper Storage
If the police decide to obtain a search warrant and look through your home for evidence, the last thing they need to see is a gun sitting on the kitchen table without a trigger lock on it. Get on the Internet and double check what the legal requirements are for proper storage of a firearm in your state. You don’t want a prosecutor who is unable to prove a case to use your carelessness as evidence of reckless endangerment.
Two Days After
Within 48 hours of the shooting, the police will have finished with the crime scene, and evidence will be collected. Toxicology reports will be started on the corpse of your attacker. If you were arrested, bail will likely be arranged by this time. If you haven’t been charged, you’ll be at home staring at the walls wondering what to do next. The police are investigating, your lawyer is probably speaking to contacts to see if you’re going to be charged or indicted and you feel as if your life is in the hands of people who don’t understand that only one person was going to walk away from the worst night of your life. Thank God it was you.
Your next move is to begin your own investigation. Any questions, requests for information, freedom of information requests, etc., cannot be seen emanating from you. Have a trusted friend, spouse or relative begin to build a case against the perpetrator. Go online and do a criminal check on him. The Internet has a host of sites where you can find criminal records. Start to put together a matrix based on your search of Facebook or any other social media site of this person’s friends and contacts. Did they post a picture of themselves on Facebook pointing a gun? Are people they associate with on the web as well?
Remember, if the district attorney is going to prosecute you, they will be doing the same to you. This effort will save you the money you would have to pay your attorney or a private investigator to research. Even if you’re charged and found innocent at trial, legal bills will grow very quickly. You can never tell what your attorney might miss, so protect your own interests. Send out freedom of information requests for lab results, the 911 message, police tapes, etc. You might not be a lawyer, but this is all information that will be critical to your defense should you need one. Share the information with your lawyer as soon as you receive it. Your goal is to get this done as soon as possible in order to begin a strong argument against indictment. Once again, don’t tell your story to anyone but your lawyer or your spouse. Neither can be forced to testify against you, but anyone else is fair game.
Stay calm, stay focused and gradually ease back into your daily routine. This will be on your mind for months, if not years, to come, but right now, you need to reinforce the narrative that you’re the victim.
Keep your head up. You trained for this day, and you successfully defended yourself. Now comes the second phase, where you need to prove it was justified.