Tuesday, August 14, 2012

VA-ALERT: VCDL Update 8/14/12

Not yet a VCDL member? Join VCDL at: http://www.vcdl.org/join.html
VCDL's meeting schedule: http://www.vcdl.org/meetings.html
Abbreviations used in VA-ALERT: http://www.vcdl.org/help/abbr.html

1. Newport News picnic - RSVPs needed
2. Fort Lee has new policies on private weapons
3. Good letter to the editor in Roanoke Times
4. Police ID victim of homicide in Ocean View, woman charged
5. Glock vs rabid cat in Henrico
6. Antis whining again: "Stand up for stronger gun control"
7. Two homes invaded; arrest made in one case
8. Arms-trade treaty talks collapse, supporters rip Obama
9. New gun laws will do nothing to stop mass shooting attacks
10. Second Amendment at risk in Obama second term
11. The assault on weapons
12. Democrats propose limits on online ammo sales
13. Obama 'evaluates' multiple gun control bills advanced by Senate Democrats
14. Five ATF officials found responsible for Fast and Furious
15. When only criminals have guns
16. Nut control, not gun control
17. Anti: Three easy steps to trample on the Constitution
18. Psychopath Pete [CARTOON]
19. Reminder: Richmond library protest today (Wednesday, August 15)

1. Newport News picnic - RSVPs needed

The VCDL cordially invites the general public to a picnic at the Riverview Park in Newport News, VA on September the 15th from 11 AM until 2 PM. This is a family affair so bring the little ones along and enjoy the beautiful park. Food and drinks will be provided by the VCDL but attendees are encouraged to bring a dish to share if they so desire.

VCDL president Philip Van Cleave and Delegate Brenda Pogge will be speaking at the picnic. Delegate Pogge carried an important bill for VCDL this year, which allows local government employees to keep their firearms in their private vehicles while at work.

The Riverview Park is located at:

125 City Farm Road, Newport News, Virginia 23602


PLEASE RSVP at this email address:


In the SUBJECT LINE put "RSVP n", where "n" is the number in your party.

2. Fort Lee has new policies on private weapons

Roy Scherer emailed me this:

From progress-index.com: http://tinyurl.com/8b38zan

Fort Lee has new policies on private weapons, headphones and crosswalks
from staff reports
July 31, 2012

FORT LEE - Three new Fort Lee policy letters were published this week. They outline the installation requirements for registering and reporting privately owned weapons, use of crosswalks and not walking or jogging with headphones.

- Policy 08-12 is directed to all military and family members residing on Fort Lee as well as any individual coming onto the installation with a privately owned weapon. Concealed firearms are prohibited, the policy states.

Gun owners moving into government quarters on post must register their weapons with the Vehicle and Weapons Registration Office within 96 hours of their arrival.Service members may store weapons at their home, if authorized, or in the arms room of their assigned unit. Troops living in the barracks or residing in transient quarters will register their weapon and store it in the arms room, in accordance with the policy.

Those residing off-post - including military, government civilians, contractors and visitors - who bring a weapon onto Fort Lee for authorized activities like hunting, target ranges or marksmanship events must register their weapons as well. Furthermore, when entering the installation, they must pass through the access control point, declare they are bringing a weapon onto post and state the purpose for doing so to ACP personnel.

When transporting weapons on post, gun-owners must have their registration documentation on hand, and they may only travel in a direct route to or from the authorized activity at which the firearm is to be used or stored.


3. Good letter to the editor in Roanoke Times

EM Dave Hicks emailed me this:


From the roanoke.com: http://tinyurl.com/d88mygd

Gun violence, politics and delusional people
July 29, 2012

Here we are again, faced with a terrible tragedy of senseless loss of innocent, unsuspecting people due to a gun in the hands of another probably delusional person.

The quick fix for most politicians will be: Ban guns. The more complex solution will be ignored. That solution would be to fix the mental health system laws.

I worked as a psychiatric nurse for many years. I have supported several parents who were frustrated that they could not get psychiatric help for their mentally ill child because that child was not suicidal or making homicidal threats toward others. The parents knew something serious was wrong with their child. The system said their child had rights, and could not be forced into care.

There is the problem, politicians. But I know you will continue to say it is guns, not the person behind the guns.

As of today, we have not heard that the Colorado movie killer has mental problems. He is just the right age for a schizophrenic break.

Let's see what develops.

Meanwhile, the politicians will look toward gun control. Too bad. That's just the way it is.


4. Police ID victim of homicide in Ocean View, woman charged

From wvec.com: http://tinyurl.com/cga2h9f

Police ID victim of homicide in Ocean View, woman charged
by Christel Elizabeth Hain
July 30, 2012

NORFOLK-- Police have charged a 34-year-old Norfolk woman with killing a man Sunday afternoon in Norfolk.

Christel Elizabeth Hain is charged with murder in the death of a man she initially reported as an intruder into her apartment.

On Tuesday, police said the victim is Dale Querino of Norfolk.

Police say Hain called police around 2:30 p.m. Sunday to report she had just shot a male intruder.

Officers responded to the 1300 block of Kingston Avenue in Ocean View where they found the gunshot victim. Querino was pronounced dead at the scene.

Stephen Shifflett lives nearby. He says he was mowing his lawn when Hain ran over to him. "She told me she needed to use my phone because she just shot a man," said Shifflett.

Shifflett says Hain explained she was home alone when she heard noises in another room, saw an unknown man standing there, and shot him.

Police have not confirmed a motive.

5. Glock vs rabid cat in Henrico

Don't think a gun is handy to have within reach in the yard?

John Jones emailed me this:


I'm a member of VCDL and thought you might find this short item interesting. The correspondent is a friend of mine who now lives in Florida, but regularly visits his Sandston, Virginia home, where he used to live, to maintain it. This incident happened last month when he and his wife returned to their Sandston home:

...While Gloria and I were in Virginia last month, Gloria was attacked by a rabid cat. She was cleaning up some debris back next to the creek and a cat got her around the leg and wouldn't let go. After a lengthy struggle she was able to get free and run to the garage, with the cat in pursuit. We called the Henrico Animal Protection people and reported the attack. During the 45 minutes it took them to get there, the cat started to wander off. Since we need a confirmation of "rabid" or "not rabid," I followed it so we could report the location to the authorities, and I did so with all the stealth that a 70 year old can muster only to have the cat detect my stalking and take a run at me. Well there's where the gun part of the story takes off. I had a Glock 19 in my hand on this foray, and was totally surprised at how hard it is to hit a charging cat. When he finally stopped, on the spot where I had been standing, I'd fired 4 rounds. The state lab confirmed the cat to be rabid. Gloria has completed her series of injections and is doing well.

Sometimes adventure pursues us.

6. Antis whining again: "Stand up for stronger gun control"

Board Member Bruce Jackson emailed me this:


From dailyprogress.com: http://tinyurl.com/cctfnvn

Stand up for stronger gun control
by M. Denise Williams
July 30, 2012

How many tragedies do we have to endure before Americans demand stronger gun control laws? In the last few years, we have had the Virginia Tech massacre, the shooting of a U.S. congresswoman and, now, in Colorado, the killing and wounding of 70 innocent people watching a movie. [PVC: We just need to make mass shootings illegal. Oh, that's right, they are. I wonder why that didn't stop the massacres from happening if laws have such power?]

Yet because of the power of the National Rifle Association lobby, we do not have reasonable gun control laws. The NRA and its constituency say that "guns don't kill people, people kill people." But angry, mentally ill people with guns kill people. [PVC: Yeah, like the 20,000 gun laws we already have are not enough.]

We, unfortunately, cannot prevent others from being angry or mentally ill, but we can limit their access to assault rifles and other guns.

The other argument the NRA makes is that deranged criminals won't follow the law and will obtain guns anyway. So, it says, there is no point in having background checks, etc. If one really believes that, why do we have any laws at all, since criminals won't obey them? [PVC: Laws are appropriate to punish bad behavior. Simply owning or possessing a gun is not bad behavior. Murder, rape, and robbery are.]

If our citizenry wants guns to hunt or for self-protection, that's fine. But our forefathers, when they wrote the Second Amendment, did not mean that we should have access to assault rifles and automatic weapons that can kill scores of people in a moment. [PVC: I wonder how old Denise is that she actually talked to the Founding Fathers to determine that? The truth is that citizens were expected to have the infantry weapons of the day - what our military today calls "assault weapons."]

I hope we and our leaders will finally stand up for a reasonable, common-sense approach to gun control. At a bare minimum, the assault weapons ban needs to be reinstated. [PVC: There were no rifles even used at Virginia Tech, the Gabby Gifford shooting, nor at the Sikh Temple, only in the Aurora massacre. Denise doesn't even know what she's trying to ban! ;-) ]

7. Two homes invaded; arrest made in one case

Who needs to carry a gun at home?

Roy Scherer emailed me this:


From timesdispatch.com: http://tinyurl.com/ch8xgo4

Crime and police news for Wednesday, Aug. 1

Two homes invaded; arrest made in one case
by Times-Dispatch Staff
August 1, 2012

Police are investigating two home invasions early Tuesday that left one person with minor injuries.

One arrest was made in the first crime, which occurred at 12:32 a.m. in the 3500 block of Clydewood Avenue in South Richmond, where two men armed with handguns forced their way into a home occupied by a man and a woman.

Police Capt. Angela Greene said the intruders set off an alarm and the woman living in the home called 911 as the men were breaking into the house.

The intruders beat the man living in the home and demanded money, said police. After the victims complied, the suspects ran outside just as police arrived, Greene said. One suspect was taken into custody, but the other fled.

The man living in the home was checked by an ambulance crew for minor injuries that occurred when he was pistol-whipped, but he refused additional treatment, Greene said.

Greene said the second home invasion was reported at 2 a.m. in the 2300 block of Phaup Street in the East End, where a woman told investigators that three black men armed with handguns forced their way into her home, took her purse and fled.

The woman was not harmed.

She described the suspects as a male wearing a gray snap-cap hat and jean jacket, who was clean-shaven except for a moustache; a black male with an afro and wearing a black beanie with "804" on it and a black shirt; and a male wearing a black long-sleeved shirt.

8. Arms-trade treaty talks collapse, supporters rip Obama

Obama has been sending signals that if reelected he will be moving forward on gun control. Based on past performance he might do that with or without Congress' approval.

The anti-freedom crowd is certainly pushing him to do so.

James Durso emailed me this:


From hotair.com: http://tinyurl.com/c9eyhvt

Arms-trade treaty talks collapse, supporters rip Obama
by Ed Morrissey
July 28, 2012

I doubt anyone reading Hot Air will mind this, but it looks like the UN won't get a chance to dictate terms of the Second Amendment any time soon. Yesterday evening, talks on an international arms-trade treaty collapsed when the US and a few other nations demanded an extension of time before committing to a position. The rest of the participants suspended the entire effort — and activists pointed their fingers at Barack Obama:

The United Nations indefinitely suspended action on an international arms trade treaty Friday after the United States and several other countries asked for more time.

The decision sparked angry reactions from human rights groups often allied with the Obama administration, who believed a treaty to regulate the export of deadly weapons to rogue regimes was within reach. The UN had spent the entire month of July hammering out a deal, and Friday was the deadline for an agreement on a treaty that has met with the staunch opposition of the National Rifle Association and bipartisan concerns in the Senate.

"This was stunning cowardice by the Obama administration, which at the last minute did an about-face and scuttled progress toward a global arms treaty, just as it reached the finish line," said Suzanne Nossel, the executive director of Amnesty International USA. "It's a staggering abdication of leadership by the world's largest exporter of conventional weapons to pull the plug on the talks just as they were nearing an historic breakthrough that would have required all nations to deny arms export licenses where there was an overriding risk that the weapons would be used to facilitate serious crimes against humanity."

And Scott Stedjan, Oxfam America's senior policy advisor, called the failure "a tremendous loss for thousands of innocent civilians around the globe who die each year from armed violence fueled by the unregulated transfer of arms."

It wasn't just a few activist groups that vented their frustrations, either. A statement put forward by the UK, France, Germany, and 87 other nations complained that the draft treaty was all but ready to be adopted. Without naming Obama, the nations pointed out their own "compromises" and had "overwhelming support of the international community" before the US demanded more time to consider it.

Frankly, Obama didn't have much choice. A majority of 51 Senators had already signed a letter promising to vote against ratification if the treaty covered "small arms" and/or "light weapons," which the draft treaty does — in fact, it explicitly includes "small arms and light weapons" in Article 2, Section A1h. Obama could have signed this draft a hundred times, and it still would have had no chance of passing in its current form. Had the UN struck that provision, this treaty might have won the required 67 votes for approval in the Senate, and it still would have been a big step forward in arms control … at least on paper.

The problems with this treaty mirror those of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty: it sets up a UN agency that has no teeth, where enforcement ends up being a game between the West on one side and Russia and China on the other. Meanwhile, North Korea has already gone nuclear, and Iran isn't too far away, while Russia and China protect their client states and the West vainly tries to enforce the agreement. This would have put the US in the same position, only this treaty would have the force of law inside the US, which would mean we would bind ourselves to its terms while the rest of the world's kleptocrats and tyrants would ignore it.

For now, though, it's a moot point. Obama will end up taking the blame for this "failure," which might seem unfair — but Obama chose to participate in this folly in 2009 after the US had previously refused, so he only has himself to blame for the impossible position in which he now finds himself. That's called smart power, apparently. [PVC: The Democratic leadership understands that gun control loses votes. Perhaps Obama feels he will have more "flexibility" after reelection.]

9. New gun laws will do nothing to stop mass shooting attacks

Bill Watkins emailed me this:


From foxnews.com: http://tinyurl.com/btlxd34

New gun laws will do nothing to stop mass shooting attacks
by John Lott
July 30, 2012

In the wake of the Colorado tragedy, Democrats in Congress have wasted no time introducing new gun control legislation. Today, Sen. Frank Lautenberg and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy introduced a bill that bans the sale of ammunition online and by mail.

Last Thursday, six Senate Democrats proposed amending the cybersecurity bill to ban magazines holding more than 10 bullets. President Obama also promoted renewing the Assault Weapon Ban, announcing, "AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers, not on the streets of our cities."

The reaction is understandable, but despite the best of intentions, the laws won't stop these attacks from occurring.

Take the Lautenberg and McCarthy proposed ban on online ammunition sales. The proposal would make rules for buying ammunition the same as for buying a gun. But the Colorado killer was able to legally buy a gun from a dealer and, under the proposal, he still would have been able to buy the ammunition. The requirement of a photo ID seems equally irrelevant in this case.

The law also would mandate licensed ammunition dealers to report the sale of more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition to an unlicensed person within any five consecutive business days. But what good would that do? The Colorado killer apparently planned his attack at least four months in advance. If he were trying to hide his ammunition purchases, he could easily have spread them out over time.

'Since the federal ban expired in September 2004, murder and overall violent-crime rates have actually fallen.'

What the ban would do is raise the cost of buying ammunition. But does anyone really believe that even a 20 or 30 percent increase in the price of ammo would be the difference that stopped someone intent on committing suicide or spending the rest of their lives in jail from buying ammo? It isn't like these guys have to worry about making payments on past due credit card bills.

We have already tried the magazine ban and it won't be any more helpful now than it was when the Federal Assault Weapon Ban was in effect from 1994 to 2004. A magazine, which is basically a metal box with a spring, is trivially easy to make and virtually impossible to stop criminals from obtaining.

Further, the guns in several recent mass shootings (including the one in Aurora and last year in Tucson) have jammed because of the large magazines that were used. The reason is simple physics. Large magazines require very strong springs, but the springs cannot be too strong, or it becomes impossible to load the magazines. Over time, the springs wear out, and when a spring loses its ability to push bullets into the chamber properly, the gun jams. With large springs, even a small amount of fatigue can cause jams.

President Obama's discussion of AK-47s is no more helpful, but given his long involvement in the gun control debate he surely must know what he was saying was incorrect. The civilian version of the AK-47 is not the machine gun used by militaries around the world. The civilian version merely looks like the military version on the outside, but its inside guns are the same as a deer-hunting rifle. The civilian version uses essentially the same sorts of bullets as deer-hunting rifles, fires at the same rapidity (one bullet per pull of the trigger) and does the same damage.

If Obama wants to campaign against semi-automatic guns based on their function, he should go after all semi-automatic guns. After all, in 1998, as an Illinois state senator, he supported just such a ban -– a ban that would eliminate most of the guns in the United States.

But no published peer-reviewed studies by economists or criminologists find the original federal or state assault-weapons ban reduced murder or overall violent crime.

Since the federal ban expired in September 2004, murder and overall violent-crime rates have actually fallen. In 2003, the last full year before the law expired, the U.S. murder rate was 5.7 per 100,000 people. Initial data for 2011 shows that the murder rate has fallen to 4.7 per 100,000 people.

The big problem with gun control is that it is the law-abiding good citizens, and not those intent on committing the tragedies like those in Colorado, who obey these laws. It is hard not to notice, but very aggressive gun control hasn't prevented multiple-victim public shootings in Europe.

In last year's shooting near Oslo, 69 people were killed and an additional 110 injured. Germany, a country with some of the strictest gun control in the world — it requires not only extensive psychological screening but also a year's wait to get a gun — has been the site of three of the worst five multiple-victim K-12 public school shootings in the world, all in the past decade. There are more examples of attacks in countries with strict gun control, like in Austria, Britain, France, Finland and Italy.

The guns used for the attacks in Germany and Norway were obtained illegally. When individuals plan these attacks months or even years in advance, it is virtually impossible to stop them from getting whatever weapons they want.

If we finally want to deal seriously with multiple-victim public shootings, it is about time that we acknowledge a common feature of these attacks: With just a single exception, the attack in Tucson last year, every public shooting in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed since at least 1950 has occurred in a place where citizens are not allowed to carry their own firearms. The Cinemark movie theater in Aurora, like others run by the chain around the country, displayed warning signs that it was prohibited to carry guns into the theater.

All the public mass shootings in Europe fit this rule. Take Switzerland, which has very liberal concealed carry laws.

The country also has had several big public mass shootings over the last decade, but there again all of their attacks have taken place in the few areas where guns are banned.

Last week, President Obama promised that gun control was going to be an important topic in the presidential campaign. The issue was really always there, even if it wasn't being openly debated. Whoever wins the presidency will likely determine who controls the Supreme Court and the fate of gun control laws.

Bans, like the gun-free zones, can be counterproductive. Hopefully, the debate will finally acknowledge that well- intended laws are not enough.

10. Second Amendment at risk in Obama second term

From washingtontimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/ceygwkz

MILLER: Second Amendment at risk in second term
Obama's pals agitate for gun limitations
by Emily Miller-The Washington Times
July 30, 2012

Democrats just couldn't hold it together. With less than 100 days to go before the election, the left let slip its vision of a second term for President Obama that will be the end for the Second Amendment.

They're riding on an emotional wave created by James Holmes, the suspected Aurora, Colo., movie-theater shooter who was charged with 24 counts of murder on Monday. As the courtroom proceedings in that case unfolded, Sen. Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey Democrat, and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, New York Democrat, took to New York's city hall to introduce legislation making it much harder for law-abiding citizens nationwide to purchase ammunition.

The liberal duo would restrict ammunition sales to licensed dealers and require buyers to show a photo ID at the time of purchase, effectively banning people from doing their shopping online. Also, the dealer would have to maintain detailed records for each ammunition sale and report anyone purchasing over 1,000 rounds.

This is going back to the bad old days of 1960s-era gun-control laws, which banned mail-order sales of ammo and required logs to be kept. These restrictions did absolutely nothing to help law enforcement, as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms admitted when Congress repealed those provisions in 1986.

Mr. Lautenberg also wants to turn back the clock with a Senate vote this week reinstating a ban on "high-capacity magazines," which he defines as any that hold over 10 rounds. The New Jersey Democrat wants to attach his bill to pending cybersecurity legislation, but his leader, Sen. Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, is opposed, knowing the political reality for his vulnerable members.

The Senate's third-ranking leader, Chuck Schumer of New York, couldn't restrain himself from taking to the floor Thursday to plead for more gun control: "Maybe, maybe, maybe we could pass some laws that might, might, might stop some of the unnecessary tragedies that have occurred."

In a statement on his bill, Mr. Lautenberg said Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, among others, "publicly expressed acceptance or support for some form of gun regulation since the Colorado shooting." That's a rather fanciful interpretation of what Justice Scalia said on "Fox News Sunday" this weekend. Justice Scalia, who penned the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller decision striking down the District's 30-year gun ban, said the ruling left open the possibility of limitations on guns.

"What the opinion in Heller said is that it will have to be decided in future cases — what limitations upon the right to bear arms are permissible," said the justice. "My starting point and ending point probably will be what limitations are within the understood limitations that the society had at the time. They had some limitation on the nature of arms that could be borne. So, we'll see what those limitations are as applied to modern weapons." He gave the example that cannons wouldn't qualify because they aren't carried by hand.

The shape of those future limitations will change should Mr. Obama win his last political election. The switch of a single vote would put Justice Scalia and the originalist interpretation of the scope of the Second Amendment in the minority. Millions of gun owners will have this in mind as November approaches.

11. The assault on weapons

From washingtontimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/chehux7

MILLER: The assault on weapons
Liberals pounce on opportunity to water down constitutional rights
by Emily Miller
July 24, 2012

Gun grabbers wasted no time exploiting Friday's shooting in Aurora, Colo., by calling for more restrictive firearm laws. Their liberal agenda is off target because, with U.S. gun ownership at its highest level ever, the public sees crime is way down. This blows a hole in the left's argument, but it doesn't stop it.

Despite the House being strongly pro-gun and the Senate marginally so, some Democratic senators want to seize the opportunity to peddle pet legislation. On Tuesday, Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg of New Jersey kicked off an effort to reinstate the expired ban on high-capacity magazines. His bill would prohibit the manufacture and sale of ammunition magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds — modern handguns generally hold between 12 and 17. It's not clear what exactly Mr. Lautenberg would accomplish, unless the government also recalls the 300 million firearms already owned by Americans.

New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg went off the deep end on Monday when he told CNN that police officers across the country should "stand up collectively and say, 'We're going to go on strike'" until states pass more gun laws, such as bans on certain kinds of bullets. The billionaire businessman also demanded that presidential candidates soften their stance on gun rights.

President Obama is well aware of the political consequences of admitting his true feelings on guns in an election year. To avoid angering his liberal base, Mr. Obama let his spokesman respond on Sunday, off-camera on Air Force One on the way to Aurora. "The president is focused on doing the things that we can do that protect Second Amendment rights, which he thinks is important, but also to make it harder for individuals who should not, under existing law, have weapons to obtain them," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.

Mitt Romney was not afraid to say it himself. "I still believe that the Second Amendment is the right course to preserve and defend and don't believe that new laws are going to make a difference in this type of tragedy," the Republican presidential candidate told Larry Kudlow on CNBC Monday.

The left also wants to outlaw the purchase of large quantities of ammunition over the Internet. Because James Holmes reportedly had thousands of rounds of ammo, they assume anyone with a similar "stockpile" must be up to no good. As any savvy shopper knows, buying in bulk online is convenient and saves money. Gun owners are no different.

What liberals are really after is not preventing the tragedies that can't be stopped. Their goal is to create inconvenience so fewer law-abiding citizens turn to guns for protection. They want the public to look to government instead.

Sadly for the left, the unconstitutional speed bumps it has placed before the Second Amendment are being removed slowly. On Monday, U.S. District Judge Benson Everett Legg lifted a stay, which effectively will force Maryland to drop its policy of arbitrarily denying requests from upstanding citizens seeking concealed-carry permits. Respecting the right to keep and bear arms in this way is the right response.

12. Democrats propose limits on online ammo sales

Craig Faunce emailed me this:


….what a predictable bunch.

A sensational story, Aurora was. Funny that on the same day (or perhaps it was the day after), 14 people died when a pickup truck carrying more than 20 passengers overturned, and there's no outrage about tightening down vehicle laws. Where's the demand to ban pickup trucks, or other "high capacity" vehicles?

From cnn.com: http://tinyurl.com/chv8h4o

Democrats propose limits on online ammo sales
by Laurie Ure
July 31, 2012

Washington (CNN) -- Two Democratic lawmakers took on the hot-button political issue of gun control Monday, introducing legislation that would effectively ban online ammunition sales.

Longtime gun control advocates Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-New Jersey, and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, D-New York, introduced the bill that they said would prevent buyers from purchasing unlimited quantities of ammunition through the Internet or through the mail. The bill would also require ammunition dealers to report bulk ammo sales to law enforcement.

"It's time to close the loophole that's allowing killers -- deranged, insane -- and even terrorists to buy ammunition online," Lautenberg said Monday at a news conference on the steps of Manhattan's City Hall. "You don't have to be a scientist to understand how wrong this is."

The lawmakers pointed to the Colorado mass shooting earlier this month, where police in Aurora said movie shooting suspect James Holmes purchased more than 6,000 rounds of ammunition online.

Holmes faces 24 murder counts

On Monday, Holmes was charged with 24 counts of first-degree murder in the slayings of 12 people who had packed a screening of the latest Batman movie that began shortly after midnight on July 20. Fifty-eight people were injured in the incident.

The media and the massacre Dissecting the politics of gun violence

"When you buy a gun on the Internet, you have go to a store to pick that gun up," McCarthy said. "Well if you're going to be buying these kinds of large amounts of ammunition, you know what? Somebody should see your face."

Democratic strategists see gun control as political dynamite. Many Democrats blame Al Gore's 2000 presidential election loss on his failure to win conservative states, an outcome they said was due in part to Gore's push for gun control.

And many members of Congress admittedly do not want to run afoul of the powerful and well-funded National Rifle Association.

Many Democrats won't touch gun control

Last week, Arizona Democrat Raul Grijalva, who represents a pro-gun congressional district, told CNN the NRA "carries with it a threat ... that if you speak against any point of gun control, you automatically face a political threat."

In fact, the Democratic-led Senate has not voted on any gun legislation in three years, since defeating a 2009 GOP measure that would have required states to recognize each other's gun laws.

President Barack Obama on Thursday made his strongest comments yet on the issue, advocating a "common sense" approach to gun control that would prevent a "mentally unbalanced individual" from obtaining assault weapons. But he treaded carefully and did not push for new gun laws.

"I, like most Americans, believe that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual the right to bear arms," Obama said. "But I also believe that a lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers, not in the hands of criminals."

Lautenberg and McCarthy's proposed Stop Online Ammunition Sales Act would require ammunition buyers who are not licensed dealers to present photo identification at the time of purchase, effectively banning the online or mail order purchase of ammo by regular civilians. It also requires licensed ammunition dealers to report the sale of more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition to an unlicensed person within any five consecutive business days.

Lautenberg recognized that changing gun laws is a challenge.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who controls the Senate's agenda, said Thursday, "With the schedule we have, we're not going to get into the debate on gun control."

House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that existing laws should be enforced. "AK-47s, all right, are not allowed to be in the hands of criminals. That is the law," he said.

Nonetheless, Lautenberg said he thinks the bill's chances are "pretty good." [PVC: Wow - he's GOT to lay off the hard liquor.]

"It's going to be acted upon next week, and we're very optimistic," Lautenberg said.

13. Obama 'evaluates' multiple gun control bills advanced by Senate Democrats

From monachuslex.com: http://tinyurl.com/93lcpay

Obama 'evaluates' multiple gun control bills advanced by Senate Democrats
by John Pierce
July 31, 2012

In the wake of the tragic 'Dark Knight' attack in Aurora Colorado, the media and gun control advocates (but I repeat myself) seem determined to push the Democratic Party into renewing its push for more gun control. And there is no shortage of Democratic candidates willing to oblige regardless of the damage it might do to their party this fall.

While President Obama and his advisors see the political dangers of such legislation in a tough election cycle, the Democratic leadership in the Senate seems unable to contain themselves. Following on the heels of an amendment to the Cybersecurity bill to ban the sale, transfer or possession of normal capacity magazines, Democratic Senator Frank Lautenberg is introducing a separate bill that would completely ban the online sale of ammo; the Stop Online Ammunition Sales Act.

But his bill would do far more than that. It would require that sellers of ammunition be licensed by the government making it difficult or impractical for many small rural stores to sell ammunition at all. The surviving 'licensed' ammo dealers would be required to maintain records of all sales with buyers being forced to produce photo ID and any failure in record-keeping on the part of sellers would give rise to criminal liability. In addition, any sales of more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition would have to be reported to law enforcement for follow-up investigation.

Think about that. Because of the acts of a single madman, in the Democratic Party's vision of the future, buying a couple boxes of .22 long rifle ammo would justify your inclusion in a government database and a possible visit from the ATF. You know … many of my fellow ACLU members are hard-core about privacy rights but seem oblivious to the precedential implications of these kinds of attacks on gun rights. Hasn't the war on drugs shown us anything?

In any case, President Obama is taking a very cautious approach with gun control legislation (at least until after the election). When White House Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest was asked about the President's stance on the issue during Monday's press briefing, he would only say that the President would "evaluate them as they make their way through the process."

Moderate Democrats should be very concerned about this development. Libertarians and independents have to vote for someone and we usually decide by applying the "lesser of two evils" approach. In determining which party represents the lesser evil, Americans are concerned about a variety of issues including the economy, health care, the civil rights of immigrants, and marriage equality to name just a few. But gun control isn't even on the radar for most of the Democratic base or independent voters. By allowing New York and California elites to dominate the party platform, they run a real risk of losing both the presidency and the Senate in the fall.

14. Five ATF officials found responsible for Fast and Furious

Montford Oakes emailed me this:


From latimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/9v8vv7s

Exclusive: Five ATF officials found responsible for Fast and Furious
By Richard A. Serrano
July 30, 2012

WASHINGTON -- Republican congressional investigators have concluded that five senior ATF officials -- from the special agent-in-charge of the Phoenix field office to the top man in the bureau's Washington headquarters -- are collectively responsible for the failed Fast and Furious gun-tracking operation that was "marred by missteps, poor judgments and inherently reckless strategy."

The investigators, in a final report likely to be released later this week, also unearthed new evidence that agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Phoenix initially sought to hide from the Mexican government the crucial information that two Fast and Furious firearms were recovered after the brother of a Mexican state attorney general was killed there.

According to a copy of the report obtained Monday by The Times, the investigators said their findings are "the best information available as of now" about the flawed gun operation that last month led to Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. being found in contempt of Congress for failing to turn over subpoenaed documents.

Two more final reports, they said, will deal with "the devastating failure of supervision and leadership" at the Department of Justice and an "unprecedented obstruction of the [congressional] investigation by the highest levels of the Justice Department, including the attorney general himself."

The first report did allege some Justice Department involvement, however, notably that Kenneth E. Melson, then acting ATF director, was made into a "scapegoat" for Fast and Furious after he told congressional Republicans his Justice Department supervisors "were doing more damage control than anything" else once Fast and Furious became public.

"My view is that the whole matter of the department's response in this case was a disaster," Melson told the investigators.

Fast and Furious, which allowed some 2,500 illegal gun sales in Arizona with the hope that agents would track the weapons to Mexican drug cartels, began in fall 2009 and was halted after U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed in December 2010. By then, most of the weapons had been lost, and two were recovered at the scene of his slaying.

The five ATF managers, since moved to other positions, have either defended Fast and Furious in congressional testimony or refused to discuss it. They could not be reached for comment Monday. At the Justice Department, senior officials, including Holder, have steadfastly maintained that Fast and Furious was confined to the Arizona border region and that Washington was never aware of the flawed tactics.

The joint staff report, authored by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and Charles E. Grassley of Iowa, the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, was highly critical of the ATF supervisors.

They found that William Newell, the special agent-in-charge in Phoenix, exhibited "repeatedly risky" management and "consistently pushed the envelope of permissible investigative techniques." The report said "he had been reprimanded ... before for crossing the line, but under a new administration and a new attorney general he reverted back to the use of risky gunwalking tactics."

His boss, Deputy Assistant Director for Field Operations William McMahon, "rubber stamped critical documents that came across his desk without reading them," the report alleged. "In McMahon's view it was not his job to ask any questions about what was going on in the field."

They added that McMahon gave "false testimony" to Congress about signing applications for wiretap intercepts in Fast and Furious.

His supervisor, Mark Chait, assistant director for field operations, "played a surprisingly passive role during the operation," the report said. "He failed to provide oversight that his experience should have dictated and his position required."

Above Chait was Deputy Director William Hoover, who the report said ordered an exit strategy to scuttle Fast and Furious but never followed through: "Hoover was derelict in his duty to ensure that public safety was not jeopardized."

And they said Melson, a longtime career Justice official, "often stayed above the fray" instead of bringing Fast and Furious to an "end sooner."

But, the investigators said, ATF agents said that they were hamstrung by federal prosecutors in Arizona from obtaining criminal charges for illegal gun sales, and that Melson "even offered to travel to Phoenix to write the indictments himself. Still, he never ordered it be shut down."

In the November 2010 slaying in Mexico of Mario Gonzalez, the brother of Patricia Gonzalez, then attorney general for the state of Chihuahua, two of 16 weapons were traced back to Fast and Furious after they were recovered from a shootout with Mexican police.

But 10 days later, ATF Agent Tonya English urged Agent Hope MacAllister and their supervisor, David J. Voth, to keep it under wraps. "My thought is not to release any information," she told them in an email.

When Patricia Gonzalez later learned that two of the guns had been illegally obtained under Fast and Furious, she was outraged. "The basic ineptitude of these officials [who ordered the Fast and Furious operation] caused the death of my brother and surely thousands more victims," she said.

The following month, Agent Terry was killed south of Tucson. Voth emailed back, "Ugh ... things will most likely get ugly."

15. When only criminals have guns

From washingtontimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/9z9po5n

MILLER: When only criminals have guns - D.C. puts rights of bad guys above public safety
by Emily Miller
August 2, 2012

In the nation's capital, it's a fair question to ask: Who gets the better deal, innocent citizens who want to own a gun, or dangerous criminals? The District's deliberate policy of releasing criminals back onto the streets shows the liberal city council's answer has little to do with public safety.

Take the case of Ramad Speight, an admitted psychotic and alleged cop-shooter. He was in custody from March until July 16 when a D.C. judge freed him to travel around the city with a few restrictions. Mr. Speight was under arrest following a shootout with Montgomery County, Md. police that left him shot three times in the torso. The officers had responded to a 911 call about shots fired on the north side of Eastern Avenue, just inside the District line.

According to prosecutors, Mr. Speight stood outside his home, yelled "Game over," raised his loaded revolver and opened fire on the officers. They ran for cover, but Mr. Speight allegedly kept shooting, hitting one officer in the hand.

Mr. Speight was hospitalized and then held without bond on 11 charges, including having an illegal gun. Public defender Michael Satin petitioned for his release, citing Mr. Speight's use of antipsychotic medication since June as evidence that he's now less dangerous. The lawyer added the defendant's right arm is paralyzed from the shooting, which "reduces his ability to commit a crime in the community."

D.C. Superior Court Judge Florence Pan, who was appointed by President Obama, released him from home confinement, setting lenient terms that allowed Mr. Speight to leave his mother's home for school, medical or mental health appointments and court matters. Bill Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office, wouldn't comment on the ruling, but said Assistant U.S. Attorney Allison Barlotta opposed Mr. Speight's release based on "our belief that he presents a danger to the community."

This wasn't an isolated case. The idea to make it easier for judges to hold defendants in jail before trial orginated in then-Mayor Anthony Williams's administration. In Jan. 2008, Phil Mendelson, then the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, held a hearing on the proposal. The at-large Democrat told the police and government witnesses that he opposed the concept on civil liberties grounds, adding that, "our laws favor release, not detention."

While violent crime is down nationwide, it's up 7 percent in the District so far this year. "One of the reasons for that is Phil Mendelson and his policies of the last six years that have put all criminals, including violent criminals, out on the streets pending trial," said Kristopher Baumann, head of Washington's police union. "It's a recipe for disaster." Mr. Mendelson's office didn't respond to a request for comment.

Law-abiding citizens who want to get a gun legally receive no such leniency. The District makes them pay fees, take a written test, travel to police headquarters at least twice and wait 10 days. The bad guys just walk down the street and buy a gun quickly. However, if someone uses an illegal gun to commit a violent crime, all of a sudden the city starts to worry about his civil liberties.

As Officer Baumann said, "Only in D.C. can you shoot a police officer and be sent home to think about what you did wrong, instead of going to jail." The District needs to reverse its priorities to make the city safer.

16. Nut control, not gun control

From washingtontimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/d3mo883

NUGENT: Nut control, not gun control - Failure to deal with mental illness leads to massacres
by Ted Nugent
August 2, 2012

In the wake of the massacre in Aurora, Colo., the left has once again resorted to clamoring for further restrictions on the right of law-abiding citizens to own guns and defend ourselves — even in the face of inescapable evidence that such restrictions are at the root cause of such slaughters.

The misguided left believes that more gun control will somehow magically stop psychotic nuts hell-bent on going on a killing spree. As usual, they are dead wrong.

According to the kind, caring and considerate left, you have every right to be a crazy druggie and roam the streets with no means of support. Heck, they even help nut-jobs occupy Wall Street and beyond. Surely, the unarmed and helpless will someday bring peace to the world, end world hunger and Rodney King's dream of everyone getting along will become a reality. No wonder they call it dope.

Years ago the left clamored that mental institutions violated the rights of those with mental illnesses. The American Civil Liberties Union even sued on their behalf. The result was the doors of the cuckoo nests were flung open and the patients stumbled out.

Now they are everywhere. You can't visit any city in America without encountering dirty people who are severely mentally impaired roaming the streets. Pushing shopping carts, mumbling to themselves, sleeping under bridges or in parks and basically being a nuisance, they ultimately endanger themselves. Most are not violent, just certifiably crazy by anyone's standards.

But some of the psychotics are violent. Some believe they're comic book characters and can't tell the difference between fantasy and reality.

James Holmes, the sole suspect in the shooting, was under the care of a psychiatrist at the University of Colorado Denver. No one knows what the psychiatrist thought of the Joker. The records of their conversations are patient-client confidential, and so far the psychiatrist isn't talking.

Granted, we don't yet know the bizarro behavior of the Joker leading up to massacre, but we should begin trying to put together the obvious puzzle.

Even a whack-job like the Joker probably had a few friends or associates. What did they think about him? What did his parents, teachers and fellow graduate students think of him in the weeks or months preceding the massacre? It is difficult to believe that everyone who knew him thought he was just your average, normal guy.

There was, however, one guy who was concerned — so concerned that he refused to let the Joker join the Lead Valley Range gun club. It's hard to believe he was the only guy who found the Joker's words, phrases and conduct to be bizarre.

When the truth comes out, I predict the Joker's pattern of behavior should have landed him in a padded room instead of a movie theater. We will to listen to the professional apologists tell us how he "slipped through the cracks." So typical.

It's time we begin to restrict the rights of psychotic nuts like the Joker instead of law-abiding citizens.

Yet, instead of having a national discussion on making it easier to lock up psychotics, the left would much rather discuss restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens to own guns and defend ourselves. Passing additional gun laws may make the left feel good, but it won't do good. The left's "treatment plan" of more gun control won't work, and anyone with an ounce of common sense knows it. What the left's plan will ensure is more massacres at the hands of psychotics like the Joker.

The real discussion that needs to occur in America is how we finally throw off the shackles of political correctness, quit worrying about "feelings" and simply restrict the rights of psychotics by making it easier to lock them up for their safety and the safety of others.

Advocating additional gun laws and gun-free zones is crazy. Crazy talk like that can get you killed.

17. Anti: Three easy steps to trample on the Constitution

From nationaljournal.com: http://tinyurl.com/9ojpo39

Three Simple Steps
Yes, no new gun-control legislation can make it through this Congress, but that doesn't mean President Obama's hands are completely tied.
by Major Garrett
July 26, 2012

In a speech to the Urban League in New Orleans on Wednesday, President Obama decried daily urban gun violence—equal in toll, he said, to an Aurora, Colo., mass shooting every day—but he glossed over what gun-control advocates say is his own record of failing to use existing executive power to tighten access to the deadliest firearms.

"There's talk of new reforms, and there's talk of new legislation," Obama told the Urban League, setting the table for a "don't-blame-me-blame-Congress" explanation for policy drift. "And, too often, those efforts are defeated by politics and by lobbying and eventually by the pull of our collective attention elsewhere."

Gun-control proponents and dozens of congressional Democrats vehemently disagree. Although Obama can't take action that would have prevented the Batman movie shootings, the president has all the power he needs right now—as well as a precedent set by a Republican predecessor—to crack down on some assault-weapon sales. And Obama, despite three years of pleas from these Democrats, is not using it.

The president could make three moves:

1. Allow law-enforcement agencies to confiscate more assault weapons like the AR-15 rifle used in the Aurora shootings by reinstituting a tighter definition of "sporting purposes" when inspecting assault weapons for import. President George H.W. Bush did this in 1989 to ban the import of assault weapons, using powers under the Gun Control Act of 1968, which stipulated that legal rifles had to be "suitable for sporting purposes." Bush acted after a serial criminal killed five schoolchildren and wounded 29 others with an AK-47 assault rifle on Jan. 27, 1989, in Stockton, Calif.

President Clinton expanded that action with a second executive order in 1998 banning firearm imports and ammunition from China. The elder Bush watched his son, President George W. Bush, preside over the persistent watering down of the "sporting purposes" filter to block assault-weapons imports—a policy Obama has perpetuated. Fifty-three members of Congress wrote Obama on Feb. 12, 2009, urging him to tighten the ban on assault-weapon imports. Obama has ignored such requests.

"This continues to be a problem," said Dennis Henigan, vice president for law and policy at the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. "Something happened under the second Bush administration, and that has essentially continued under Obama."

2. Expand Obama's new requirement issued by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives that gun shops in border states report customers who purchase two or more domestically made assault weapons within five business days. The courts have upheld the reporting requirement, and it could be expanded nationwide without congressional action. Gun-control advocates credit Obama for taking the initial step on tracking multiple sales in border states (where Mexican cartel violence has risen), but a national system could help make multiple assault-weapon purchases more visible and traceable.

3. Toughen licensing requirements on gun dealers to secure their inventories. Advocates say that Obama could easily take three basic steps: Require dealers to better secure firearms from possible theft, mandate background checks of gun-shop employees, and eliminate the "fire sale" loophole that allows gun dealers who have had their licenses revoked to sell off their inventory without compulsory background checks on those sales. Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-N.Y., has written to Obama asking for this administrative-enforcement change. Obama already has used some executive power to expand the reach of criminal background checks for firearm purchases, which he touted in New Orleans, calling them "more thorough and complete."

The National Rifle Association declined to comment on the use of presidential authority on gun control or on whether the organization would object to the exercise of any of the executive powers that advocates say Obama has but doesn't use. In these specific and untapped areas of executive clout and gun control, the record is clear: Democrats have complained about the president's inaction, while the NRA, given the opportunity to complain, has said nothing.

Moreover, Obama has proven again and again in an election year that he can find executive means to sidestep Congress. He did so on the so-called Dream Act by ordering an end to arrests of young immigrants brought to America illegally by their parents and granting two-year permits to those already in deportation proceedings. Obama has also heeded calls from GOP governors to waive certain work requirements under the 1996 welfare-reform law, even though some congressional Republicans accuse him of "gutting" the law's goal of moving people from welfare to work. The president has also used executive power to lift the insurance mandate for those who qualify for expanded Medicaid coverage under his new health care law but live in states where the governor won't accept expanded federal Medicaid financing.

Obama is no stranger to dipping deep into the murky waters of executive powers and finding ways to achieve policy goals that Congress has thwarted. Proponents of gun control say that the president has crystal clear and uncontested powers—some used by an NRA card-carrying GOP president (Bush resigned from the group in 1995)—to deal with assault weapons.

Yet the White House remains stonily silent on Obama's intentions even to reevaluate whether to exercise these powers. In the Big Easy, he made it sound as if gun control is always hard. It most definitely can be. But there are actions Obama can easily take, and what's hard for Democrats and gun-control advocates to figure out is why he won't.

18. Psychopath Pete [CARTOON]

Board Member Dale Welch emailed me this:


From wnd.com: http://tinyurl.com/chtczm3

19. Reminder: Richmond library protest today (Wednesday, August 15)

VCDL's "read-in" to protest a poorly written/confusing firearms rule at Richmond libraries is today:

Time & date: Wednesday, August 15th, from 5 PM to 7 PM

Richmond Public Library, Main Branch
101 East Franklin Street
Richmond, VA 23219

If you plan on attending, respond to this alert and let me know so I can get a head count.

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.

VCDL web page: http://www.vcdl.org [http://www.vcdl.org/]
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