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NYC Cracks Down on Reloaders

New York City is now cracking down on their policy that allowed empty brass from the NYPD ranges to be sold to companies that reload the ammo to sell again on the civilian market. They put a ban on sales to reloaders, and all buyers must now sign an agreement that they will destroy the brass in such a way that it can never be reloaded.

Interestingly, Bloomberg, who initially defended selling to the reloading company, isn’t publicly taking credit for this move. However, de Blasio’s team says that while they absolutely take pride in having this policy, it’s actually a Bloomberg policy that was put into place very quietly in 2012.

Interesting Draw Techniques

Our only question: Just how was the woman planning to draw the gun from her…unique…storage…compartment?

Perhaps more interesting, the gun was stolen from a man last year and the police notified him that they had recovered the gun during an arrest. They apparently never told him the story of where the gun was found.

According to The Smoking Gun, in addition to her arrest for driving on a suspended license, she’s been charged with gun possession and introducing contraband into a penile penal facility.

Media Notices Silencer Popularity

It looks like Time just noticed the recent popularity of silencers in this piece published today. They don’t really scream that the sky is falling in the article, but they make sure to mention Newtown with how gun owners “have gone crazy” buying up guns and accessories, along with a handy reminder for folks that thinking of silencers should evoke the image of a criminal shooting someone in a back alley. At least they are kind enough to mention that silencers are, in fact, legal.

Preparing for Indianapolis

As tens of thousands of gun owners prepare to head to Indianapolis in the coming days, let’s take a quick look at how the media coverage is shaping up.

In this story about the renovation at the Westin next to the Convention Center that is only finishing days before the NRA convention comes to town, the reporters include these little nuggets from the local tourism authorities:

VisitIndy told FOX59 News that the 7,100 downtown hotel rooms are experiencing a virtual sellout for the weekend, with many of the 33,000 hotel rooms in the metropolitan area filling up as well.

They say the expected economic impact is predicted to be about $55 million based on recent numbers.

The Washington Times does a glowing review of the event for Beltway insiders who often forget that NRA is a group with real grassroots.

The Indianapolis Star provides some tips on what NRA visitors should do in the area. Some of you might find it odd that a cemetery is on their list of things to see, but I can tell you that I was actually thinking of going to visit this cemetery if time allowed. First of all, there’s a president and vice president buried there. Secondly, it really does appear to be pretty stunning. I learned about it before this article because I have a distant family member buried there.

With the Illegal Mayors of Everytown Moms holding their own mini event, expect letters to the editor like this one to hit continually throughout the show. They learned last year that headlines about record breaking attendance and 80,000+ gun owners standing up for their rights at a convention was a bad thing for their cause. More than any direct protest, they are trying to make sure that every article about tens of thousands of politically-motivated gun owners showing up to prep for punishing anti-gun lawmakers at the polls this year includes a mention that gun control activists are also gathering. This is a PR game, and it’s one that has been successfully played before in other issues. (There was an event for conservative online activists that followed around the much bigger liberal version every year, and many media stories about the liberal convention would include mention of the conservative convention.)

Military History Bleg

Because I know how wise you readers are in your varied studies and hobbies, I hope that you can help me out with something. I’d like to know if the abbreviation for the rank of ensign in a Revolutionary War militia is the same as what we use now in the Navy.

One of my ancestors was an ensign in the Henry County, Virginia militia, and I’d like do properly document that with an abbreviation. However, given that the rank was abolished in the Army in 1815, and the fact that I don’t know if things would be quite the same in the militia, I thought I would try to find out what the proper format is in this case before I have it engraved on something.

So, military & history buffs, what do you say?

Shot Heard Round the World

I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to resist watching this video on today’s anniversary if you’re of a certain age range:

The View from the Other Side

Sebastian highlighted John Richardson’s excellent post about the $1 million+ views from the gun controller’s homes.

I just have to add that I think there’s a part of that same way of thinking at work in this series of interviews with gun controllers that’s been making the rounds.

Notice that the question at 1:40 is simply whether a citizen should be able to defend him/herself at all with any weapon in case of attack, and the woman (who probably doesn’t have Mike Bloomberg’s wealth, but probably isn’t hurting in the wealthy Virginia suburbs) simply says, “No.” Later in the video, he uses an example of being in a bad neighborhood, and she simply asks, “Why? … Well, why are you in the bad neighborhood?”

This is someone who can afford to be out-of-touch. It doesn’t take being dirt poor to end up in bad neighborhoods, especially in that area. The apartment I lived in cost a pretty penny in rent each month, and I would go to bed with the sounds of “Stop! Police!” outside my window or walk outside of my building to be passed by running men fleeing authorities. I could simply ask my neighbor not to play music so loud that it knocked pictures off the wall and end up being threatened. It’s not something that most people seek out, it’s something that just happens around them. To her, the notion that a potential victim may not have the financial means to leave just means the person needs to accept the circumstances and take the assault rather than having a tool to fight back should an attack put his or her life at risk. As John so aptly put it:

When you live in a million dollar plus home in a plush neighborhood, your view of the world is just different. You don’t have crime at your doorstep and you really don’t have to worry about home invasions.

The woman I mention in the video is another great example of this kind of thinking. I get the feeling that with the new name and theme of Bloomberg’s group, we’ll see even more of this preaching from the comfort behind the gates of their communities.

Perry County Finds Itself in Hot Water Due to Audit

There’s an interesting situation going on Perry County, Pennsylvania. Auditor Kimberly McMullen may have put the county in some hot water due in a recent interview.

First, she’s demanding permission from the County to spend $6,700 in legal fees to have lawyers research whether she’s allowed access to the confidential files of license to carry holders. (The sheriff won’t hand all of the records over because he notes that that it’s against the law to release the personal information.) The County gave her $2,000 to pursue it instead. Second, she told the media that the law supposedly changed last year and that she would have had access before that “change.”

Well, attorney Josh Prince is doing the taxpayers of Perry County a favor and helping them save $2,000 on legal research. He sent a letter to the auditor making clear that the license to carry applicant information is not to be released to her.

However, McMullen’s claims that the records were available in previous years caught Prince’s attention since he noted that the section of law he cited hasn’t changed since 1997. Oops. McMullen may be regretting that claim since Prince included this little gem in the letter:

Thus, the confidentiality of firearms license information is nothing new and the County and its respective Departments, employees and agents are liable for any disclosures that have occurred. Based on your statement to reporter Sean Sauro that prior to a year ago, all this information was available via right-to-know law requests, I am requesting all information on previous LTCF applicant disclosures by the County and its respective Departments, employees and agents.

So, sorry Perry County taxpayers. Because your auditor doesn’t know the law, now you have to spend resources going through all paperwork to see if the confidential information has ever been released before. Oops.

What Media Bias?

When we saw a Facebook acquaintance post a story about the sheriff of Beaver County, Pennsylvania being place on house arrest with electronic monitoring while his ~700 guns are removed from the home as he awaits trial for threatening the lives of a campaign worker and a local reporter, we noticed something odd.

What was odd? There was no mention of party, nor did they make a big deal about an “arsenal” kept in the home. Sebastian told me, as I hit up Google to find any other stories about the case that might mention party affiliation since Pennsylvania’s sheriffs are elected in partisan elections, that he would put money on the fact that the guy is a Democrat. Well, one, two, three stories with no mention of party affiliation, and I started to believe him.

Then, with a few keystrokes, I found the election results page that confirmed the suspicions. George David ran as a Democrat against a GOP opponent in 2011 and now stands accused of threatening one of the campaign workers who helped him win that election. But isn’t it amazing how the party affiliation just magically dropped out of every single story written by locals and the wire?

UPDATE: A local website reports that the action that caused the order for removal of guns and house arrest is that the sheriff (allegedly) went into an area of his office he was ordered not to go, grabbed a long gun and began “racking” a long gun of some kind. According to the report, two of the alleged victims were in that part of the office the court ordered him to stay out of.

Guns & Social Media Debates

VSSA does a great job of taking apart a story that anti-gun groups are trying to push to promote the narrative that they are somehow going to win the battle over the Second Amendment on social media because they are supposedly being so innovative by going to SXSW and hosting sparsely attended panels on social media.

As VSSA points out, NRA hosts its own panel with volunteers doing different types of work, including how to effectively use social media, every year to a crowd many, many, many times the size of what is featured in the story.

Of course, for those who don’t travel all the way to Austin or Indy to attend such lectures from either group, we always have the numbers:

If you are looking for grassroots support, looking strictly at the numbers, Moms Demand Action has 153,000 followers on Facebook. Mayors Against Illegal Guns has 21,000. The NRA destroys both of them with 3.2 million followers on Facebook. Twitter numbers are lower for NRA but they are still about 10 times higher that the numbers for both Moms Demand Action and Demand Action (the only reference I could find on Twitter to MAIG).

Now, the anti-gun groups have stepped up their game on social media, and there’s no doubt about that. But, that doesn’t mean they are likely to be effectively using it to “beat” us politically any time soon.

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