September 2007

Saturday, September 1st, 2007

Former President George H.W.
Bush got his World War Two service
revolver back in August, 60 years
after giving it to a Navy lieutenant
aboard the submarine that rescued
him when his place was shot down
over the Pacific Ocean, reported the
Associated Press. Bush donated the
revolver to the National Constitution
Center the same day the son of Lt.
J.G. Albert H. Brostrom returned the
.38-caliber Smith & Wesson and its
holster to him. Brostrom was the sonar
man on the USS Finback, which
rescued Bush, a Navy pilot, after he
was shot down September 2, 1944
by Japanese aircraft fire. Brostrom
brought the future president to the
infirmary and later shared his bunk
with him. Bush gave Brostrom the
revolver in gratitude.
A former Bakersfield, California
police officer turned armed pastor
helped nab a man who allegedly
stole a car from his church’s parking
lot, reported Fox News. James
Kilgore, pastor at Taft Free Will Baptist
Church, said he always keeps a gun
and handcuffs in his fanny pack.
They came in handy in late July when
one of his elderly parishioners left
Bible study to find his car had vanished.
Kilgore and Walter Brenton,
72, drove around looking for Brenton’s
1986 Ford Crown Victoria, and
spotted the alleged thief driving it a
few blocks away. The pastor followed
the driver until he crashed, tackled
him and then handcuffed him until
police arrived on the scene. Ronald
Lee Allen, 46, of Taft, was arrested
on suspicion of grand theft auto
and being in possession of stolen
property, said Kern County sheriff’s
Sgt. Martin Downs.
“Hopefully,” wrote columnist
Terrence P. Jeffrey in commenting
on a Washington, D.C. plan to appeal
an appellate court’s decision
striking down the D.C. handgun ban,
“a majority of the Supreme Court
will stand as firmly today in defense
of the right to keep and bear arms
as Americans once did at Concord
Bridge.”
BATFE no longer routinely
checks addresses of some buyers
at gun shows after being accused of
chilling sales at one show in 2005,
according to a July report from the
U.S. Justice Department. However,
Justice Department Inspector General
Glenn A. Fine wrote in the 56-
page report that the checks were part
of BATFE gun show investigations
that appear to have been warranted.
“We found the BATFE’s decisions
to conduct investigative operations,
including those in the Richmond,
Virginia area, were based on significant
law enforcement intelligence
from a variety of sources indicating
that illegal activity was occurring
or was about to occur at a specific
gun show,” the report concluded.
A BATFE spokesman reportedly
agreed with the report’s findings,
calling it “an objective assessment
of BATFE’s investigative operations
at gun shows.” The so-called
blanket residency checks sought to
verify addresses for gun show buyers
living in certain targeted areas.
BATFE abandoned the checks five
months after dealers at an August
2005 gun show in Richmond said
sales plummeted from buyers being
intimidated by police showing up at
their homes, and sparking congressional
concern. A January 2006
memo from BATFE headquarters
advised agents against conducting
residence checks “without reasonable
suspicion that criminal violations
may exist,” the report noted. The
U.S. attorney’s office in Alexandria,
Virginia found the checks “were resource-
intensive and rarely resulted
in prosecutions for only providing a
false address or other federal firearms
transaction documents.”
“All Swiss men must do military
service, they all learn to shoot, and
when they go home, they take their
assault rifles and 50 rounds of ammunition
with them,” notes Deutsche
Weld. “‘For me, it’s just routine,’ said
Philippe Schaub, heading home after
his latest stint in the army. ‘We all
do military service. We’re all given
a gun to take home. I keep it in my
cupboard just like the coats and
the snowboard and the vacuum
cleaner.’”