Wednesday, August 8, 2012

VA-ALERT: VCDL Mini-Update 8/8/12

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Abbreviations used in VA-ALERT:

1. In progress: Richmond Library has illegal "no concealed weapons" policy
2. In progress: Chesterfield County has mis-worded ordinance
3. Fixed: Northumberland County illegally made CHP applicant wait over 100 days
4. Fixed: Pulaski was illegally making CHP applicant wait over 45 days
5. Poll finds that Virginia voters don't want more gun control and don't believe it stops crime
6. Danville Police Department starts a new program to educate gun owners instead of doing gun "buy-ups"
7. The ever-so-uneducated gun-banners calling for "assault rifle" ban without even knowing what that is
8. Attorney General Cuccinelli files pro-liberty Amicus Brief on the overturning of the Maryland "May Issue" CHP law

1. In progress: Richmond Library has illegal "no concealed weapons" policy

It has been brought to VCDL's attention that the Richmond Library System has a "no concealed weapons policy" and is trying to justify it with falsely stating that the carrying of any concealed weapon is a violation of state law!

I'm not a happy camper. The Richmond Library System knows better than that. I am actively working this on behalf of VCDL and won't let go until it's fixed.

Be prepared for a future "read-in" at the main Richmond Library downtown. Details will follow once we have a resolution.

Here is a link to the Library's rules from their web site. The offending item is midway down the list: (PDF file)

2. In progress: Chesterfield County has mis-worded ordinance

Chesterfield County has a confusing ordinance on loaded guns in or near parks that caused a police officer to illegally order a gun-owner out of a County park. The County Attorney's office has been cooperating with VCDL to get the ordinance, which should only apply to carrying a loaded gun while hunting or target shooting, fixed to make the hunting/shooting part clear. We are also asking the County Attorney's office to tell the police not to enforce the ordinance until it has been rewritten. VCDL would be just as happy if the whole ordinance got repealed, but as a minimum it needs to be fixed.

The notification of a pubic meeting should be given this month at the Board of Supervisors meeting, with the correction made in September.

I'll let you know of breaking news on this.

Also, we are working with the County to change the rules for renting a shelter in a park to remove the wording forbidding weapons.

Once both issues are resolved, we will book a shelter and schedule a picnic.

3. Fixed: Northumberland County illegally made CHP applicant wait over 100 days

VCDL was contacted by a gun owner who had been waiting well over 100 days for his permit to be issued from Northumberland County. I called the Circuit Court Clerk, Ms. Booth, and she said that the 45-day clock didn't start until the background check had been done by law enforcement. (Northumberland requires a CHP applicants to turn in their paperwork to law enforcement and not the Clerk to start the process.) I explained that the law requires a permit be completed by the 45 day mark or a temporary permit issued. It doesn't matter who the Clerk requires the paperwork to be handed to or how long it takes law enforcement to run a background check.

The permit was issued at that point.

Hopefully Ms. Booth got the message. If anyone else has such problems in Northumberland County, get in touch with us immediately.

4. Fixed: Pulaski was illegally making CHP applicant wait over 45 days

Pulaski was giving a member the run around on why he had to wait more than 45 days for his CHP to be issued. I called and talked directly to the Circuit Court Clerk. She was very apologetic and I believe she was unaware of what her employees were doing in regards to the permit in question. She knew the law and knew that the CHP was to be issued in 45 days. The permit was issued the next day.

Again, if you live in Pulaski, or anywhere else in Virginia. and are not getting your CHP processed in 45 days, let us know immediately.

5. Poll finds that Virginia voters don't want more gun control and don't believe it stops crime

I will be on Channel 6 (ABC affiliate) news in Richmond tonight on this issue.

One of the questions on the poll is about "high capacity" magazines. They don't define what that is nor the number of rounds they are talking about, which probably led to confusion in those polled. Why would someone who believes that gun control doesn't stop crime and who doesn't want more gun control, support a "high-capacity" magazine ban?

From CBS news:

Poll: Despite mass shooting, most Colo. voters don't favor stricter gun laws
By Sarah Dutton, Jennifer De Pinto, Anthony Salvanto, Fred Backus,
Lindsey Boerma

(CBS News) Despite recent gun-related tragedies in Colorado and
Wisconsin, most voters there, and in Virginia another critical
battleground state - do not favor stricter gun laws and do not believe
stricter arms laws would help prevent acts of mass violence, according
to a Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times poll released this

Conducted from July 31 to August 6, the poll shows the majority of
likely voters in all three swing states do not favor stricter
regulations for gun sales.

Voters in Colorado, where a gunman last month killed 12 and injured
many more when he opened fire in a crowded movie theater, were most
likely to favor keeping gun laws exactly as they are, with just 38
percent wanting stricter gun sales in their state. Sixty-six percent
of voters in that state also said they do not believe harsher gun laws
would curtail future shooting sprees; 60 percent of Virginia voters
and 57 percent of Wisconsin voters share that view.

Since polling was being done at the same time as the August 5 shooting
at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, the results in today's poll would not
reflect any possible reaction to that shooting.

Trends across all three states include women being far more likely
than men, and Democrats more likely than Republicans, to support
stricter gun sales and believe tighter regulations would help prevent
future acts of violence. In each state, most voters who live in
gun-owning households favor keeping laws on gun sales as they are now.

Majorities of voters in the three states - 58 percent in Colorado, 52
in Virginia, and 57 in Wisconsin - support a nationwide ban on
high-capacity magazines that hold many rounds of ammunition. Those
numbers are slightly lower with voters living in a gun-owning
household: 45 percent in Colorado, 42 in Virginia, and 47 in

There is disagreement among voters about whether President Obama and
Mitt Romney have adequately addressed the issue of laws on gun sales.
In all three states, four in 10 voters think the candidates have spent
too little time on the issue, while one in five believe they've spent
too much time. A third of voters in the states think they've spent the
right amount of time talking about the issue.

This poll was conducted by telephone from Quinnipiac University's
interviewing facility July 31-August 6, 2012. The number of likely
voters interviewed in each state is 1,463 in Colorado, 1,412 in
Virginia and 1,428 in Wisconsin. In all three states, phone numbers
were dialed from samples of both standard land-line and cell phones.
The error due to sampling for results based on the sample in each
state could be plus or minus three percentage points in Colorado,
Virginia, and in Wisconsin. The error for subgroups may be higher.
This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the
National Council on Public Polls.

[PVC -- To see the full poll results, go to the second page of the article ]

6. Danville Police Department starts a new program to educate gun owners instead of doing gun "buy-ups"

Danville Police are disenchanted with gun "buy-ups." Instead they are going to do something that makes more sense: help educate the public on safe gun handling and ownership!


Danville police launch new gun program

By: Allison Roberts |
Published: August 05, 2012

Promoting responsible choices and responsible ownership are the cornerstones of the Where's Your Gun program the Danville Police Department is developing.

"We want people to know where their firearms are and be accountable," said Cpl. T.B. Scearce of the Danville Police Department. "Educated in your choice and responsible in your action — that's what this whole campaign is about."

The Where's Your Gun program has been through a "soft roll out," Scearce said, which includes the launching of the website and a few classes with youth groups. As the funds become available, more of the program will be launched.

Part of launching the program will include ads on television, radio and newspaper. Scearce said he is also hoping to have block ads on the back of city-owned mass transit vehicles and inserts on utility bills.

The program was built on several goals that all center on teaching gun owners — or potential gun owners — how to safely and properly use, store and care for their weapons. The program is also set up to promote awareness of gun laws and provide citizens with the tools that help them become responsible gun owners.

The idea of the Where's Your Gun program was born out of the police department's lack of success with gun buyback programs. If a police department orchestrates a gun buyback program, it has to offer the guns collected to a licensed firearm dealer, and the lot will go to the highest bidder.

"From an administrative standpoint, the police department is not in favor of a gun buyback program," said Scearce. "There is a section in the law that only allows guns to be destroyed if they are evidence in a crime. That's where this campaign came from."

There are two parts of the Where's Your Gun program — an educational component involving school-aged children and classes about gun safety for adults. The educational component will be centered on the National Rifle Association's Eddie Eagle Gun Safe Program and will target kids ages 5 through 10.

The gun safety classes will be open to the public and require pre-registration to attend, Scearce said, and those classes will most likely be set up in a community classroom setting. The classes will be broken into two parts — legal issues surrounding gun safety and preventative tips including securing a weapon, how to document serial numbers and where to keep that information.

These classes will not be a substitute for the firearm class needed to obtain a concealed weapons permit. It is designed to be another tool to gain as much information as possible to be a responsible gun owner, Scearce said.

"Bottom line, it's to create a sense of responsibility for people who own guns," Scearce said. "There is nothing wrong with owning guns. Own as many as you want — own them legally and use them legally — and you shouldn't have anything to worry about."

7. The ever-so-uneducated gun-banners calling for "assault rifle" ban without even knowing what that is

The consummate expert on guns, Jesse Jackson, is calling for a ban on "assault rifles" after the Wisconsin massacre. But in that massacre the only rifle that was used was by the police! The criminal had a handgun. Is Jesse suggesting that police not be allowed to have "assault rifles?"

Truth is I'm not sure that Jesse knows the difference between a rifle and a handgun, much less between a semi-automatic rifle and a machine gun.

From the

Jackson calls for ban on assault rifles

Civil rights leader in support of guns for hunting, defending home
Written by
Jerry Mitchell

In a Tuesday conversation with The Clarion-Ledger, the former presidential candidate supported the right of Americans to use guns to hunt or defend their homes, but "assault weapons are in another zone," he said. "These guns threaten our security."

He pointed to questions raised by some law enforcement officers, including Miami Police Chief John Timoney, who said since a ban on assault rifles was lifted in 2004, use of these weapons in south Florida homicides have increased five fold.

Jackson called them "military weapons" that the public should not have access to. "Police check them out and check them in."

Cliff Cargill, a National Rifle Association firearms instructor and competitive pistol shooter, said Jackson should "take a course in U.S. history, and maybe he can pay attention this time."

During the American Revolutionary War, "the musket was the so-called assault rifle of its day," he said.

These so-called assault weapons helped ensure our nation's freedom, he said. "Second Amendment rights are not hunters' rights or sportsmen's rights."

A Republican who dresses up in hunter's orange and borrows his neighbor's dog is doing nothing more than donning a Halloween Day outfit, he said. "They need to support the Second Amendment and not just hunters' rights or sportsmen's rights."

He complained, too, about Democrats who want to take away his ability to reload his own ammunition. "They want us to have an arsenal license for that," said Cargill, a 10-time state champion in shooting revolvers or semi-automatic rifles.

Asked why the public should have access to assault rifles, he said, "When trouble happens and seconds count, police are minutes away. I have an assault rifle for the same reason I have a fire extinguisher in the house."

During the 1992 Los Angeles riots, some Korean shop owners stood on the rooftops of their stores and kept looters at bay, he said. "That's why we have the right to bear arms. When society breaks down, maybe you need an AK-47."

On Tuesday, Jackson shared statistics about violence on America's streets.

So far, more than 6,500 U.S. soldiers have died in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, "but we're losing 30,000 Americans a year to gunfire," he said. [PVC: Mostly drug dealers and gang bangers killing each other.]

Jackson met Tuesday with Jackson Public Schools officials and shared ways that parents can help their children excel.

He said when he talked recently with a group of basketball players, he asked them about practice. They told him they practiced six days a week, three to four hours a day.

He asked them if they studied six days a week. They said no.

While charter schools may indeed aid some selected children, "what about the rest of the students?" he asked. "What about the ones that aren't chartered and chosen?"

8. Attorney General Cuccinelli files pro-liberty Amicus Brief on the overturning of the Maryland "May Issue" CHP law

Cuccinelli standing up for liberty and the 2A. Since the Maryland case is being appealed and heard in the 4th Circuit, the ruling could effect gun owners in Virginia. I am quoted in this article.

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch:

AG Cuccinelli Takes Aim at Maryland Gun Law, Virginia Pro-Gun Votes


Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli — aiming to be elected governor of Virginia in 2013 — has filed a brief in a Maryland gun case that is bound to hit the target with firearms enthusiasts in the commonwealth.
Cuccinelli's office on Monday filed a "friend of the court" or amicus brief, on behalf of Virginia and 13 other states in support of a federal district court ruling that struck down a Maryland law that grants handgun carry permits only to people who can prove a "good and substantial reason" that they face a specific or imminent threat to their personal safety beyond that of ordinary citizens.

Virginia does not require its citizens to have a permit for the open carry of firearms, but requires permits for individuals to carry concealed handguns, for the most part only restricting felons, persons with certain misdemeanor convictions and persons with a criminal a history of mental illness from obtaining permits.

The state of Maryland has appealed the decision in Woollard v. Gallagher, which is being heard in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Cuccinelli's brief argues that Maryland's "good and substantial reason" requirement to obtain a handgun carry permit for self-defense outside of the home "impinges on the constitutional rights of its citizens.
"…The self-defense interest animating the Second Amendment's individual right to keep and bear arms applies broadly beyond the confines of an individual's home."

The brief also argues that Maryland cannot justify the broad restriction because it has "less-restrictive alternatives" available to address safety concerns, and also argues that research shows "right-to-carry laws do not result in criminal violence."

Maryland is among a minority of states that have similar restrictions on the carrying of firearms. Virginia gun rights groups expressed support for Cuccinelli's intervention in the case.

"The Attorney General is espousing what the vast majority of states (41) have in place – a legal way for all law-abiding citizens to bear arms with minimal or no government interference," said Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League.

"My office is committed to the never-ending necessity of protecting Second Amendment rights," said Cuccinelli, who is challenging Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling for the Republican nomination for governor next year.

Bolling holds similar views on gun rights to those of Cuccinelli and has supported pro-gun legislation in the past.

Here is the URL to the AG's brief:

VA-ALERT is a project of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc.
(VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization
dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to
Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right.

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