A Sunday editorial in the Bloomington, Ind., Herald-Times suggested that there are some “bad ideas…proposed in the Indiana General Assembly, and it’s harder to think of a worse one than guns on campus.”
How about dead students and staff on campus? That is the concern of legislation already proposed in several states, including Washington, where freshman state Rep. Liz Pike (R-Camas) wants to make it possible for teachers and/or administrators to be armed. Other lawmakers have apparently said that idea is dead-on-arrival, which seems to be how the hoplophobes in Olympia and across the American landscape want students and teachers, rather than admit that their “gun free zones” philosophy has been a complete failure. In Virginia, they like the idea of guns at schools.
How about “outing” registered gun owners in the pages of a newspaper? There has been a furious debate in the aftermath of a New York newspaper’s revelation of the names and addresses of legal gun owners in two counties last month. This column had an exclusive interview with one of the law-abiding victims of that publication, and now it is reported that another person named in that story was the target of a home invasion robbery.
A New York state senator asserts that the burglary attempt can be linked directly to the White Plains Journal News story, because the would-be burglar used the newspaper’s interactive map to pick his target. National Gun Rights Examiner David Codrea writes about that here.
What about a push to ban firearms ownership by law-abiding citizens? In Seattle on Sunday, according to the Seattle Times, “hundreds of people” gathered at Westlake Mall and marched to the Seattle Center calling for all kinds of gun controls. It's set off a debate among Times readers.
Meanwhile, thousands of citizens jammed a gun show at the Monroe fairgrounds and thousands more will visit a gun show in Puyallup this coming weekend, to exercise their Second Amendment rights.
More citizens across the country will participate in “Gun Appreciation Day” activities on Saturday, including a rally at the Capitol Campus in Olympia, the third annual event of its type. Veteran activist Jim Beal of Federal Way is involved with that event, and in a telephone chat Sunday with this column, he looks for a good turnout in response to recent threats against firearms rights.
Those “hundreds of citizens” in Seattle Sunday believe their interests trump the rights of more than 393,000 concealed pistol license holders in the Evergreen State, and more than a million gun owners statewide, whom Beal, a Vietnam veteran and open carry activist, perhaps epitomizes. He’s not the least bit interested in breaking a law, but he believes his civil rights are at stake, just like those of millions of gun owners across the nation.
Thousands of Washington State citizens own semiautomatic rifles like the ones Washington Ceasefire wants banned. What would Ceasefire do, turn these citizens into criminals with a pen stroke? Would they strip all of those citizens of their right to carry under the state constitution? They will have to get past Beal and his fellow activists first.
This column is presently on assignment in Las Vegas, covering the annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show. For the next few days, we will be interviewing retailers, manufacturers and firearms owners to get their perspectives on all of this.
There is much anticipation, none of it good, about what Vice President Joe Biden will report to President Barack Obama on Tuesday regarding proposed changes in the nation’s gun laws. This is going to be a very interesting week.
Today, we’re at a gun range, checking out new firearms. More about that later.
Your assignment this week:
Write a letter, make a telephone call, send an e-mail to your two senators and member of Congress.