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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Alaska Senate Committee Weighs Campus Carry Bill

The Education Committee in the Alaska state senate heard testimony Tuesday regarding SB 174, which would remove restrictions for the carrying of concealed firearms on college campuses. According to the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Pete Kelly, R-Fairbanks, the current campus carry ban outlined by the University of Alaska’s Board of Regents infringes upon the Second Amendment rights of Alaskans. 

“Bad guys with guns are stopped by good guys with guns,” explained Kelly. “And if the university has made it so all the good guys can’t have guns, they are then at mercy of bad guys with the gun.” The University of Alaska opposes the bill, and the committee also heard testimony from the university’s president, Jim Johnsen. In response, Sen. Kelly promised to amend the bill to address some of the university’s objections.


Alleged Kalamazoo Killer Apparently Untouched By Gun Laws, Background Checks

The Uber taxicab driver charged with killing six and wounding two Saturday night in Kalamazoo was apparently not affected by Michigan’s gun laws any more than its laws against murder. Nor was he deterred by employers’ “gun-free workplace” rules that give criminals, who ignore those rules, plenty of disarmed and defenseless victims, who obey. 

As usual, President Obama tried to exploit the tragedy Monday, but none of Obama’s supposed “solutions” could have prevented the crimes. Michigan already has handgun registration, has a “permit to purchase” mandate for private handgun sales and requires background checks on all handgun sales. 

What’s more, Uber “prohibits possessing firearms of any kind in a vehicle” and, in addition to the state-mandated background checks required of all handgun purchasers in Michigan, CNN confirmed that Uber did its own background check on the accused killer, as well. So how can another anti-gun law change any of that?


Harvard Prof Wants To Ban Rifles In Birthplace Of American Revolution

Lexington, Mass., has long been famous as being the place where American revolutionaries fired “The Shot Heard ‘Round The World.” Now, a Harvard professor wants the city to ban America’s most popular rifles, which he calls “assault weapons.” 

In an interview Sunday on NPR, Robert Rotberg referred to the hastily concocted Highland Park, Ill., ban on semi-automatics, saying it “made perfect sense to use their very carefully crafted legislation, which not only bans assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, but it also specifies the hundred or so specific weapons that are prohibited.” 

Rotberg, a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government who lost a bid to become a selectman of Lexington in 2014, might do well to study history; Clinton’s failed 1994 “assault weapons” ban expired because, according to government data, it had no impact on crime. FBI data records that rifles of all types are used in less than 2 percent of U.S. crimes.


Minnesota’s Proposal To Get The Lead Out Fires Up Further Debate

A proposed ban on lead ammunition has set rivals across typically unified Minnesota hunting communities. Targeted to begin as early as 2018, wildlife officials plan to restrict certain shotgun pellets in over 400,000 acres across the state’s southern and western “farmland zones.” Those hunting ring-necked pheasant stand to be most affected, but turkey, grouse and small-game hunters are also alarmed.

Waterfowl hunters in Minnesota have been banned from using lead since 1987, but there appears to be no long-term impact. In fact, the Twin Cities Pioneer Press quotes Steve Merchant, a Department of Natural Resources wildlife manager, as saying, “We don’t have science that shows it negatively impacting on a population.”

This is the second time in less than a decade anti-hunting legislation—and Second Amendment freedoms—have come under attack in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. The DNR proposed a similar argument in 2008, which failed after fierce opposition from the NRA.


Former Pol Uses Terrorism To Call For “Smart” Gun Mandates

In a baffling op-ed published in the Portland Press Herald, Cynthia Dill—a civil rights lawyer and former state senator—refers to the ongoing controversy between Apple and the FBI over the contents of an iPhone owned by the San Bernardino attackers. She wants us to “… not forget that it wasn’t an iPhone that killed 14 people in San Bernardino last December; it was four guns …” Actually, there were a couple of terrorists involved as well.

Dill reluctantly notes that yes, people were technically to blame, before launching into a convoluted argument about how “smart” gun technology is the answer. To terrorism? We think Dill may have forgotten what she was initially writing about; and despite her job description, it seems that the right to bear arms isn’t a civil right she cares for. So-called “smart” guns won’t prevent terrorism—and in the technology’s current state, it won’t reliably stop your run-of-the-mill home invader either.


Armed Alabama Homeowner Thwarts Thieves

Three would-be burglars in Forestdale, Ala., walked away empty-handed after a failed attempt to break into a shed on private property. It happened just after noon when homeowner Marcus McIntosh—who isn’t normally home at that time of day, but happened to be on this occasion—heard his dog barking. 

He came up from his basement to investigate and found two women in his driveway and a man trying to break into his shed. McIntosh got his gun and confronted them. The suspects fled but, in trying to get away, their car got stuck in a ditch. McIntosh was then able to grab the man and held him at gunpoint until police arrived. The two women were later located and taken into custody. 

McIntosh had a warning for future burglars: “We are not going to take it. You don’t try to take stuff from people who work hard.”


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