The Bloomberg Collection

Kim du Toit already weighed in on this one, but I felt compelled to chime in, being about fellow Wisconsin resident Steve Lauer and Lauer Custom Weaponry. Steve was interviewed on NRANews, and said that Bloomberg’s ban was the greatest advertising he could hope to get. 


 link  

A Wisconsin company that disguises deadly firearms with bright paints and camouflage has a new target: Mayor Bloomberg. 

Lauer Custom Weaponry, whose products were banned in the city in 2006 because they make dangerous guns look like innocent toys, is taunting the anti-gun mayor with a line of paints named “The Bloomberg Collection.”

The company – which named its purple hue after Barney, the dinosaur beloved by toddlers – is peddling a rainbow of candy-colored paints for each of the five boroughs. 

There’s red for Manhattan, rose for the Bronx, blue for Brooklyn, green for Queens and orange for Staten Island. 

And as an extra slap – a stencil of the mayor’s face for the barrel of the gun.

Gun owners also can plunk down $129 for a “Bloomberg Collection EZ Camo Kit” to pimp out their semiautomatics and rifles with a brick wall and graffiti decoration. 

It’s no joke. 

An outraged Bloomberg called gun-coloration kits “a tragedy in the making.” 

“Making a quick buck by coloring a handgun to look like a toy is craven and beneath any honest businessman,” Bloomberg told the Daily News. “By coloring these guns, a real one looks like a toy, and a police officer won’t be able to tell the difference.” 

“Imagine an officer who comes upon a teenager pointing a pink gun into a crowd. If the gun is a toy, an innocent teenager may be killed – and others, too.” 

Our police officers have a hard enough job as it is, and that’s why we passed a law to prevent these deadly tragedies from occurring.” 

It’s just the latest time Bloomberg has come under fire from the weapons industry for his efforts to shut down New York’s illegal gun trade. 

Last year, a Virginia gun shop held a “Bloomberg raffle” – with the prize a brand-new gun – to protest the mayor’s crackdown on stores he says are illegally peddling firearms that end up on New York streets. 

Not to be left out, the National Rifle Association soon plastered a picture of Bloomberg as an octopus on the cover of its magazine. 

This time, Bloomberg angered Steve Lauer, owner of Lauer Custom Weaponry, when he pushed through a law that punishes anyone who uses, buys or sells a gun-coloration kit in New York with a year in jail or a $1,000 fine. 

“The mayor picked us out as being the pink-gun guys,” said Toby Johnson, who described himself as Lauer’s “right-hand man” at the Chippewa Falls company. 

The bright paints were meant to help rescue workers and range masters locate guns more easily – not fool cops, Johnson said. They regularly sell the colors named after the boroughs and have even sold “five or six” Bloomberg camo kits, Johnson said. 

Women also are big fans of the colors, he added. 

“The ladies like it. They fashion their guns after their clothing,” Johnson said. 

But at least one woman was angered by the “shameful ploy” and “disgraceful marketing.” 

“In the hands of a child, a real gun made to look like a toy has deadly consequences,” said City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan).


 

The line that gets me is: “Imagine an officer who comes upon a teenager pointing a pink gun into a crowd If the gun is a toy, an innocent teenager may be killed – and others, too.” Pretty simple to me, a teenager pointing a potential weapon at a crown is not innocent. An officer should assume a weapon is real, and engage accordingly. Typical gun banners, blame the object, not the people. 

And what about magic markers? You could make a FAKE gun look REAL!!!  

You know what the next step after banning bright guns is: Ban dark guns! They are too easy to hide!   

Kudos to Steve and the rest of LCW, it is great to see someone take on this foolishness. 

Sebastian v. Rebecca Peters

Sebastian from Pro-Gun Progressive recently was involved in a debate on Al Jazeera opposite IANSA queen Rebecca Peters.  Check out  his take on the debate herePart 1 of the debate hereand part 2 here Standard tired old arguments that more guns equal more crime, America has the highest crime rate, blah blah blah.  Even if we give her, for the sake of argument, that America is more violent than other industrialized nations (which I take serious issue with), let’s look at trending for a moment. America – Violent crime has been going down a while now, while gun rights are going up on average (CCW, Castle doctrine, etc), or at least have remained fairly even. England – Most guns are banned, and the violent crime rate is rising dramatically.  Australia – much the same.  She also makes a comment about citizens of other countries trusting their governments more than Americans. I see it the other way. I am glad to live in country where the government trusts it’s citizens more than most other governments do.

Rove on the Democrat Candidates

Hot Air has a great article regarding how out of step the Democratic leaders, including the two presidential candidates, are on the war. While 2006 may have been a referendum on the war, I think it is clear that although the American people were not happy with the course of events at that time, I don’t think that they were bent on cutting & running like a large number of the Democrat politicians. In 2006, the war was not going very well, and the main message we were getting from the White House was that we would “stay the course.” Unfortunately, staying the course is not a strategy to win. It is resolve to see a strategy through, but it is not a strategy unto itself, and it was clear that we needed a new strategy. The surge was that strategy. And the surge has worked. We have seen a large amount of progress in Iraq, and it is time to admit that. It is time to stop pushing for defeat. It is time to say that we will not abandon the Iraqis like we did the South Vietnamese. And given the latest tape from Bin Laden saying how great a base of operations Iraq would be, it is clear that there is a strategic interest in staying until we see a stable, self governing Iraq.

Gura on machine guns

Michael Bane had a post regarding the discussion of machine guns in the D.C. v. Heller oral arguments, including quoting a post from Alan Gura. I have to admit that I cringed listening to the exchanges regarding machine guns, as I believe that military style weapons should be available to U.S. citizens, and machine guns seemed to be bargained away. Alan Gura, however, nailed it. If he had gone in arguing that the court had to rule for an all encompassing right, we would likely lose the case. Listening to the tone of questioning from the justices, it is clear that they were not in sympathy with opening the door wide to all weapons. We must remember that a victory in part is much better than a loss in full; we must be willing to take a small win, and use that as a building block to a larger goal.

 

Remember that the NFA was passed over 70 years ago, and as much as we would like to see it disappear in one sweeping ruling or a single bill in congress, IT WON’T. I am sure there are many people that want the court to rule that everything up to and maybe beyond howitzers were allowed, and some of them feel that some arms were “thrown under the bus” by Gura, but Alan Gura went for the win IN THIS CASE, and he did so quite well. If the court decides that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right and strikes down D.C.’s ban, WE HAVE WON. It may not be the sweeping reversal of (almost) all gun control laws that we would love to see, but it is a win, we need to take it.

 

Michael Bane also makes a very good argument for the legalization of suppressors, and that would be an excellent start in legislative incrementalism. After that, maybe short barrels, and then… Just as our liberties have been taken away a little at a time, we need to win it back in ANY increment that we can get.

The other area where Alan Gura nails it is the final quote:

“You want to change 922(o)? Take a new person shooting. Work for ‘climate change.’”

 

I haven’t gotten a chance to start ranting about this, but if we want to win this argument, we must take new people shooting. We must take more opportunities to exercise our rights, and encourage others to do the same. We must win in the court of public opinion, and the wins with the law makers and judges will follow. Take a friend hunting or shooting. Bring someone to a First Shots class. Talk to a coworker, friend, or family member, and work to educate them. Work for climate change.

 

As much it may feel like we are losing ground at times, look around: 48 states have some form of concealed carry; and castle doctrine and Katrina legislation are sweeping the nation. Some studies say that approximately 66% of Americans feel that the Second Amendment protect an individual right. We are making great strides, and I think it is safe to say we are winning. We have a long way to go, but momentum is on our side.

So go shooting!

Real Estate agent found dead

The A.P. is reporting  a story out of Wisconsin of a 71 year old real estate agent, Ann B. Nelson, who was found dead in a house she had been showing earlier in the day. She was found in a bedroom with a smoldering mattress and wounds to her head. This certainly looks like a case of being able to get someone to a secluded place by way of their job, and murdering them.  This is yet another instance of what happens when citizens are not allowed to defend themselves. The Wisconsin Legislature has previously passed a concealed carry bill, which Governor Doyle vetoed, maintaining Wisconsin as a victim disarmament zone. Would Ann Nelson have been carrying a gun? I don’t know. But then again, neither would anyone seeking to do her harm. Because Wisconsin prohibits carrying concealed weapons, criminals can rest easy knowing that the likelihood of attacking someone who is armed is so low.  In the last year we have seen several pizza delivery drivers attacked, and some killed in Milwaukee. The one driver that defended himself, Andres Vegas, was faced with a misdemeanor concealed weapons charge, which a judge fortunately threw out. But an honest citizen should not have to deal with the court, hiring lawyers, etc. for an obvious case of self defense like this. Paul Schumann wasn’t so lucky. December 8th, 2008, he was robbed by Quincy L. Baker, who then shot him in the back of the head. Members of Schumann’s family said the longtime pizza deliveryman had been shot twice before. Where was the Governor for these people? Where were the political appointee police chiefs that bucked the opinions of the rank-and-file, and opposed CCW? They could not be there, the hard truth is, at the time a crime of violence occurs, there is often only the criminal and the victim. If the criminal is bigger, stronger, or better armed than the victim, what chance does the victim have? They have none, unless they are allowed the tools to defend themselves with.  Is it unreasonable to think that if delivery drivers, real estate agents, and many other people whose jobs land them in potentially life threatening situations alone, were allowed to arm themselves it would be less likely that these people would have died? To quote from our friend on the left “If we could save just one life” wouldn’t it be worth it? Maybe neither of the people that died would have been carrying. Maybe they still would have died. But at least they would have a chance.

Well, Does he?

Shooting Wire had this great quote from an interview with Dick Heller, the respondant in D.C. v. Heller:

At that point, a reporter interjected: “The Mayor (DC Mayor Adrian M. Fenty) says the handgun ban and his initiatives have significantly lowered violent crime in the District. How do you answer that, Mr. Heller?” The initial answer certainly wasn’t expected – Dick Heller laughed. Ruefully.

Pointing at the Mayor who was making his way across the plaza, surrounded by at least six DC police officers, Heller said, “The Mayor doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He doesn’t walk on the street like an average citizen. Look at him; he travels with an army of police officers as bodyguards—to keep him safe. But he says that I don’t have the right to be a force of one to protect myself. Does he look like he thinks the streets are safe?”

There was no follow-up question.

A couple of good quotes from the arguments

CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS: So if you have a law that prohibits the possession of books, it’s all right if you allow the possession of newspapers? (Page 16, Line 24 – Page 2, Line 1)
JUSTICE SCALIA: You mean you can’t have any more arms than you would need to take with you to the militia? You can’t have a — you can’t have a — you know, a turkey gun and a duck gun and a 30.06 and a 270 and — you know, different — different hunting guns for different — (Page 88, Line 8 – 13)

A transcript of the arguments is available at the Supreme Court website:

http://www.supremecourtus.gov/oral_arguments/argument_transcripts/07-290.pdf 

D.C. v. Heller Oral Arguments

Having listened to the oral arguments in D.C. v. Heller, I am feeling more confident that SCOTUS will make a right decision. Judging from questions posed by the justices, especially Kennedy, who can be a swing vote, there appears to be a good chance that the High Court will uphold an individual right. I do think that the court will craft a very narrow decision, probably only affecting D.C.

Whatever the High Court decides, this is a time for action. If they decide against us, we will have a fight on out hands, and if they decide for us, we need to use the momentum that will give us. Either way, we need to be in contact with our elected leaders, putting pressure on them to pass good laws, and educating our friend and neighbors on the issue.

Wisconsin’s Katrina Law

It looks like Wisconsin’s Governor Doyle finally got one right. Yesterday he signed AB-581, the “Katrina Bill”, into law. The bill prevents anyone with emergency powers, such as in a time of natural disaster or extreme civil unrest, from confiscating or restricting legally owned firearms and ammunition. While it may be unthinkable to some, this is exactly what happened in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. In the time when people needed them the most, the police were confiscating a citizen’s best means of protection. The passage of this bill will go a long way to help prevent this from happening if such a disaster ever occurs in Wisconsin.

I suppose this means I have to call Doyle’s office and thank him for signing it… First having to call and thank Feingold signing the Amicus brief, now Doyle…

What a great problem to have.