February 2004

Sunday, February 1st, 2004

In Ohio, after CCRKBA Chairman
Alan M. Gottlieb urged Gov. Bob
Taft to sign a concealed carry
measure passed by the state
legislature, Taft did so. For years,
CCRKBA worked with Ohioans for
Concealed Carry to produce a CCW
measure acceptable to both the
legislature and the governor. Under
the measure, slated to take effect in
90 days, Ohioans who apply to carry
a concealed firearm will have to be
fingerprinted, undergo a
background check, take 12 hours of
training and three hours of training
on a firing range, and acquire special
holsters for smaller guns.
Congress has passed a $373
billion omnibus appropriations bill
which included a requirement that
all records from mandatory
background checks on potential gun
buyers authorized by the Brady Act
will be destroyed within 24 hours.
This requirement enforces the spirit
and intent of the law that was
negotiated in 1993 during the Clinton
Administration. However, antigunner
Sarah Brady was quick to
condemn the vote, arguing, “It has
made it easier for spousal abusers,
stalkers, the mentally ill and even
terrorists to get guns and keep them.”
She then added this threat:
“Eventually, we will restore the
background check system and
strengthen it.”
“Reversing longstanding
patterns in the United States,” reports
Tim Vanderpool in The Christian
Science Monitor, “residents ages 65
and up are now the most likely of all
citizens to own a gun. ‘Personal gun
ownership used to be highest among
the middle-aged, but in our 2000
and 2002 survey, it was highest
among the 65-plus age group. So
there is a shift upwards in gun
ownership,’ says Tom Smith, director
of the General Social Survey, which
is part of the National Opinion
Research Center at the University of
Chicago. In Arizona alone, the state’s
Department of Public Safety reports
that more than 31,000 residents
between the ages of 50 and 69 –
including 6,200 women – have
concealed weapon permits. ‘It’s
easy to understand why,’ says
Richard Batory (owner of the Desert
Trails Gun Club). ‘Just read the
papers. Older people are getting
tired of being picked on by savages.’”
“According to the National Self-
Defense Survey created by Florida
State University criminologists in
1994,” reports Doug Hagin of
OpinionEditorials.com, “the rate of
defensive gun uses can be projected
to approximately 2.5 million per year,
or one defensive use for every 13
seconds…Among 15.7 percent of
gun defenders interviewed
nationwide during the National Self-
Defense Survey, the defender
believed that someone ‘almost
certainly’ would have died had the
gun not been used for protection – a
life saved by a privately held gun
about once every 1.3 minutes. (In
another 14.2 percent cases, the
defender believed someone
‘probably’ would have died if the
gun hadn’t been used in defense.)
In 83.5 percent of those successful
gun defenses, the attacked either
used or threatened force first. So
much for the gun control argument
that gun availability for self-defense
will not make any difference.”
“In previous wars,” writes Julia
Angwin in The Wall Street Journal,
“journalists often traveled with troops
and then returned to a safe base
camp to file their stories. In Iraq,
there are few safe havens, the enemy
can be anywhere dressed in civilian
clothes, and journalists have
become targets. ‘The norms about
whether or not you shoot at
journalists have changed,’ says
Thomas Rosenstiel, director of the
Project for Excellence in Journalism,
an initiative at the Columbia
University School of Journalism to
clarify and raise the standards of
American journalism. As a result,
reporters in Iraq are arming
themselves more than in many
recent conflicts.”
In Canada, according to the
Calgary Herald, the head of the city’s
front-line police officers is calling for
the federal government to scrap the
billion-dollar gun registry because it
has been a colossal failure in
reducing violent crime in the country.
Al Koenig, president of the Calgary
Police Association, said the vast
amount of money spent on the
firearms program could have been
much better put to use for front-line
police officers in Canada. He said
the program has had no effect on
crime or acted in any way as a
deterrent.