Downrange: 01/02

U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has announced his intentions to force a Senate vote early next year on legislation that would require criminal background checks on all firearms sold at gun shows. The effort is driven by allegations by gun-control advocates claiming that foreign terrorists can easily obtain firearms from private sellers who are not required under federal law to conduct the checks.McCain, with the backing of Senators Mike DeWine (R-OH), Joe Lieberman (D-CT), and Charles Schumer (D-NY), will likely attach a gun show bill as an amendment to another piece of legislation, probably a homeland security measure, when the Senate con...

Your Right to Keep and Bear Arms

In a landmark ruling, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans held October 16 that the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees the right of individuals to keep and bear arms. The court rejected the arguments of the Clinton administrations Justice Department that the Second Amendment does not apply to individuals but merely recognizes the right of the state to arm its militia.

The case, United States v. Emerson, arose out of a Texas divorce suit in which a restraining order had been issued against the husband, Dr. Timothy Joe Emerson, who was subsequently charged with violating a federal law that prohibits the possession of firearms while under such a...

Coffee, Tea, or Frangibles?

The events of September 11 are still fresh, and they sting, and even infuriate me. Every day seems to bring a new insult, either the mounting confirmed death toll (which seems to have settled around 6,000), or a new videotaped message from Osama bin Laden.

Beyond the daily irritations, however, more serious factors are at work. For instance, there is a new emphasis on security that Americans will have to live with, primarily at airports. I dont have a problem with that, except that I wont be able to carry my 3-inch Spyderco pocketknife on board airplanes any more. Thats a shame; it was handy for opening packages of crackers.

Since Ill have to put up with inconveniences small and la...

Terror On Our Shores

I am still shocked at the images on the television. Terrorists hijacked four airplanes today, September 11, 2001, and crashed two of them into the World Trade Center buildings in Manhattan, and a third into the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. A fourth plane went down in western Pennsylvania. Its target, or even if it was part of this coordinated attack, is unknown as I write this.

Certainly we are all saddened by the human toll these attacks have wrought. Public officials in New York City and in Washington wont even hazard a guess yet. However, at the minimum several hundred died on the planes themselves and scores, likely thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, died in the explosions, fires,...

Buybacks, Safety, Registration

GUN BUYBACKS END. The Bush administration has announced that it will no longer fund a controversial gun-buyback program by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The legality of the program, which was launched by former HUD secretary Andrew Cuomo, was questioned from the start because it diverted federal money earmarked for eliminating illegal drugs from public housing projects.

A preliminary study of the HUD-funded program conducted by a University of Missouri-St. Louis researcher concluded that they are not effective. There is no evidence that they directly reduce gun violence in the form of assaults or gun homicides.


Downrange: 08/01

Gun Wisdom
As I write this, theres a big United Nations conference going on that seeks to control the so-called illicit gun trade between nations. This is chilling, because there are few countries in the world outside the U.S. which respect gun ownership. Its not too big a reach to think that gun confiscationists worldwide will take any trade restrictions on any firearms they can get anywhere, since their ultimate agenda is to take everyones right to self-defense away wherever they can. That makes controlling people-and murdering them in the name of the good of the state-much easier to accomplish.

I received an unsigned email the other day that included a few additiona...

Smith & Wesson Sold

Many shooters will be happy to learn that Smith & Wesson, or whats left of it, has been purchased by Saf-T-Hammer Corp., the Scottsdale-based firearms-safety and security company.

Smith & Wesson, a brand name for 147 years, would be at the top of any list of immediately identifiable corporate logos recognized worldwide, said Bob Scott, president of Saf-T-Hammer and former vice president of Smith & Wesson.

Tomkins Corp., a subsidiary of U.K.-based Tomkins PLC, sold Smith & Wesson for $15 million in cash, with $5 million paid upon closing and the balance due in May 2002. As of the close, Smith & Wessons total assets were approximately $97 million, which includes two manufacturing fa...

Guns and Shooting News: June 2001

New Yorks high court rules… In a major defeat for anti-firearm activists, the New York Court of Appeals unanimously ruled today that victims of firearms-related violence cannot sue firearms manufacturers for the criminal misuse of a non-defective product, stating that Federal law already has implemented a statutory and regulatory scheme to ensure seller responsibility through licensing requirements and buyer responsibility through background checks.

The Court ruled in Hamilton v. Accu-Tek that an entire industry cannot be held responsible for the criminal use of a legally manufactured and non-defective product because the connection between the manufacturer and the crimin...

Guns and Shooting News

Congressional Battle Looms Over Gun Show Issue… The stage is being set for a renewed gun control debate in Congress as U.S. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) are reportedly working together on legislation to require background checks on all firearm sales at gun shows. Word that the two are drafting a bill that may also include a government requirement for gun locks coincides with a newly announced national television ad campaign aimed at closing the so-called gun show loophole.

Gun show legislation passed both houses of Congress last year but died in conference committee when agreement could not be reached over how much time to allow for conducting the check...

Guns and Shooting News

Ashcrofts Views. In his first public interview since taking office, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft made it clear that he feels the nation has enough [gun] laws on the books and that enforcement of current laws is the answer to criminal violence.

Criticizing the Clinton Administration for allowing federal gun prosecutions to decline 46 percent over the past eight years, Ashcroft endorsed Richmond, Virginias Project Exile program, which focuses federal resources on apprehending, prosecuting, and penalizing felons who use guns to commit crimes.

Environmental Problem Solved? For the first time ever in the United States, a shooting range has received a federal perm...

Guns, Politics, & Lawsuits

Blue Dog Democrats Reject Gun Control: A coalition of some 30 conservative Democrats in the House of Representatives, blaming their partys failure to win back the House because of the gun-control issue, are urging their party to drop it from the Democratic agenda. The group believes the issue hurt Democratic candidates in many races. As we analyzed what happened and why were not successful in some of these races, that [gun control] just stands out, said U.S. Rep. Marion Berry (D-AR).

House Democratic leadership aides blame the Clinton administrations aggressive stance on gun control for the partys poor showing. We dont want it to be part of the Democratic agenda. We just do...

Clinton CITES NRA Impact

There is no doubt that widespread voter turnout by American gun owners influenced the outcome of this years elections, most notably in the race for the White House, but in the House of Representatives as well.

Despite Vice President Al Gore reportedly winning the overall popular vote due to his margins in major metropolitan areas like New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago, he ultimately lost because he failed to win the electoral vote in such key swing states as Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and his home state of Tennessee, all targeted by the NRA and the NSSF for major voter registration and turnout drives to reach hunters and shooting sports enthusiasts.

The NRAs effort was s...

Court Ruling Supports Carry Reciprocity

I’m looking at a remarkable opinion by Massachusetts District Court Associate Justice John F. Coffey, who ordered on August 3, 2023, that the state’s...