Almost immediately after yesterday’s announcement by the Obama administration that re-importation of relic M-1 Garand rifles from South Korea was being blocked by the president, gun rights advocates launched a White House petition effort to get Barack Obama to reverse his decision.
It was the same day that gun rights won a victory in Mississippi, in which that state’s Supreme Court overturned a lower court judge’s injunction against carry legislation on the grounds that it was “unconstitutionally vague.” The court ruled that Hinds County Circuit Court Judge Winston L. Kidd “erred as a matter of law” and also erred “when he stated that ‘a reasonable person reading the bill could not discern what the law allows and what it prohibits’.”
This measure, House Bill 2, is called an “open carry” bill by many activists. National Gun Rights Examiner David Codrea weighs in here.
But that victory is standing in the shadow of yesterday’s order by the president that blocks the return of the military surplus Garand rifles, which are prized by collectors and re-enactors, and used by competitive shooters. Mr. Obama has infuriated gun owners, as can be seen by the number of stories and commentaries about his decision now headlined on The Gun Wire website.
All of this news may have a short shelf life, however, as the Labor Day weekend unfolds, with its Evergreen State hunting season openers for archery deer in many units, plus grouse, rabbit and mourning dove seasons. That happens on Sunday, the same day dove hunting opens in many other states including Arizona, where hunters are being alerted to be wary of drug smuggling operations south of I-8 and I-10. The advisory warns that top dove hunting areas in Maricopa County are also “heavily used smuggling routes.”
A very short video of armed smugglers is now making the rounds on YouTube and – contrary to what Vice President Joe Biden wanted people to believe earlier this year – double-barrel shotguns are poor defensive weapons against criminals armed with the kinds of firearms that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives allowed to be walked into Mexico during Operation Fast and Furious.
But the warning should be taken to heart by Northwest hunters too, in the wake of this week’s major pot grow discovery in a canyon near Manastash Ridge, southwest of Ellensburg. According to KOMO, lawmen found some 4,450 marijuana plants in a fairly sophisticated grow operation that involved a stream diversion for irrigation. The estimated value of the pot was more than $2 million, according to the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office.
The Manastash grow operation was discovered by a couple of hikers. Grouse hunters hitting the Cascade slopes, or the Blue Mountains or the Selkirks this weekend might want to keep that in mind.
Now that the Obama Justice Department has announced it will not challenge new pot legalization laws in Colorado and Washington, there might be concerns that more such illegal marijuana grow operations might be launched.