Steve Jett

Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

Every now and then in American history, a “little guy” shows he has the courage of his convictions to stand up in some way against the powers that be and the money and influence of certain individuals seeking to promote their idea of how things ought to be.
 That has happened at different times with men and women of supposedly little influence standing up against powerful politicians in defense of the individual Second Amendment right of law-abiding American citizens to keep and bear arms.
 That’s just what may be happening right now in the USA as this piece is being written.
 “An ordinance proposed by a small town councilman in Idaho runs counter to a massive gun-grabbing campaign launched by Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City and joined now by a number of like-minded mayors of other cities around the country,” opined John M. Snyder, CCRKBA Public Affairs Director.  Snyder nominated that councilman, Steve Jett, for the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month Award for November.
 “Jett’s action could spark a reaction against the Bloomberg campaign in a number of areas throughout the United States,” Snyder said.
 Bloomberg and other gun-grabbing mayors have been working to use the courts to get what they have not been able to get through congressional and state legislative action.
 Bloomberg and the gun control lobby have been frustrated in their legislative attempts to undermine the right of law-abiding Americans to defend themselves and their families against violent criminal predators.
 These self-appointed progressives (SAPS) promote cities’ filing of third-party lawsuits against firearm and ammunition manufacturers, distributors and dealers.  They would like to sue the American firearms industry out of business.  The SAPS hope to make an end run around the individual Second Amendment civil right of law-abiding American citizens to keep and bear arms and thereby undermine if not eliminate the right of the people to defend life and property from criminal activity.
 Bloomberg and the other SAPS have been and are trying to use Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) data in these civil lawsuits even though the collection of that data is intended only for use in criminal investigations and prosecutions.  Hopefully, the U.S. House of Representatives soon will pass H.R. 5005 by Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas specifically to prohibit this.
 Into this scenario in the meantime steps the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month for November, Greenleaf, Idaho Councilman Steve Jett, with a proposal not only poles apart philosophically from the SAP campaign but actually counter to it.
 Councilman Jett has proposed an ordinance that would encourage Greenleaf citizens to own a firearm and ammunition and know how to use same.
 The proposal, part of Draft Ordinance 208, came up last month for consideration by the Greenleaf Town Council and is up for decision this month.
 Even though violent crime is a rare occurrence in Greenleaf, with a population of just 890, Steve Jett says it’s only a matter of time.
 When asked why he proposed the ordinance, Steve Jett said, “The biggest thing I was looking at is preparation.”
 Jett, Director of the Southwest Idaho Juvenile Detention Center, says his proposal is a recommendation, and not a requirement.  The wording exempts convicted felons, others prohibited from owning guns, and those who object to gun ownership.
 “The overall picture calls to mind a similar one that occurred a quarter century ago,” notes Snyder.
 In 1981, the village of Morton Grove, Illinois enacted a ban on private handgun possession.  The gun grabbers of that era, historically soul-mates of Bloomberg and company, jumped on this development as a signal to promote handgun bans in a number of locales throughout the country.
 Then, the following year, in March of 1982, under the leadership of its Mayor, Darvin Purdy, the City Council of Kennesaw, Georgia passed unanimously an ordinance requiring each head of household to own and maintain a firearm with ammunition.  In 1983, the Council amended the law to exempt those who conscientiously object to owning a firearm, convicted felons, those who cannot afford a firearm, and those with a mental or physical disability that would prevent them from owning a firearm.
 “The example of Kennesaw inspired other towns throughout the country to follow suit,” recalled Snyder.  “It knocked the stuffing out of gun grabbers and focused attention on gun defenders.
 “Let’s hope Jett’s example inspires other local officials today to promote ordinances counter to the campaign of Bloomberg and company.”