Did Beto O’Rourke Just Shut Down The Gun Control Debate?

In one rash moment, Beto accomplished what the NRA could never do, convince America that the true goal of gun control reform is disarming law-abiding citizens. I wanted to believe all of the people who said we are not coming for your guns. Thanks for clearing things up, Beto. America thanks you for your honesty.

Before Universal Background Checks, It Was Normal For A Female Friend Of My Wife To Lend Her A Handgun Before A Long Road Trip

In the 1990s when we were living in Texas, my wife was avid dressage rider. She decided she needed to train and compete in Florida for a couple of months if she was going to take her riding to the next level. A female friend upon learning of the plan became concerned that my wife was driving to Florida alone. In those times, it was perfectly normal for her friend to offer to lend a handgun and for my wife to accept. Friends did not ask friends for background checks. They know each much better than any government background check. I had more problems with her being in Florida for three months than her having a handgun for self-defense. I did not expect any problems on the trip but I was confident that my wife could handle a handgun appropriately if the need arose. My wife felt safer because she had a gun available. As expected, the handgun was not needed during the trip.

What surprises me about this discussion of universal background checks is the lack of common sense. Mr. Crenshaw argues for common-sense laws and Ms. Ocasio-Cortez argues for something that sounds weird to gun owners. Gun owners are not obligated to lend their guns. Most gun owners do not want anyone but especially the government to know how many guns they own. The scariest thought for a gun owner is that their gun will be used in a crime. So most gun owners are especially careful who they discuss guns with and who they lend guns to. You have to wonder what was she thinking when she said this.

The people you’re giving a gun to have likely abused their spouse or have a violent criminal record, & you may not know it.

In my wife’s case, I can say that she did not abuse her spouse or have a violent criminal record. I know it because I am her husband. Her friend knew it because she is her friend. The problem with common-sense gun control measures is that gun control advocates cannot utter two sentences without exposing their lack of common sense. Maybe we should wait for our gun control advocates to grow up before we write any new gun control laws.

Two Wrongs Still Does Not Make A Right #KateSteinle

Two Wrongs Do Not Make A RightI have three things that bother me about the KateSteinle decision.

Attorneys Gloating Over The Decision Made The Attorneys And San Francisco Look Bad

This was a sad day for the relatives of #KateSteinle family and San Francisco as both attorneys gloated over the decision. They seemed to be making the case that the decision was primarily about President Trump. There was a high road to discussing the jury’s decision and the attorneys did not take it. Ironically the attorneys took a divisive issue made the San Francisco justice system look cheap and arbitrary.

A SIG Sauer P239 Is A Modern, Reliable Gun. So How Does It Go Off Accidentally?

The gun used in the Kate Steinle murder was a SIG Sauer P239. This is a modern, reliable gun that is popular with law enforcement agencies. The handguns produced by SIG Sauer have a well-deserved reputation for reliability. As an example, the P226 is the official sidearm of the U.S. Navy SEALs. On 19 January 2017, SIG Sauer was awarded the contract to supply handguns to the US military. SIG Sauer does not make guns that go off “accidentally”. The only way a modern gun goes off “accidentally” is if someone accidentally puts their finger on the trigger and pulls. If your finger is on the trigger and you have not confirmed that the gun is empty, it is not an accident. Mr. Zarate had his finger on the trigger of a loaded gun and it went off. This is negligence. The lack of a conviction for involuntary manslaughter brings into question whether a sanctuary city is capable of justice for all. We signed up for blind justice not blind and stupid justice.

Does California Care About Gun Safety?

The only #KateSteinle conviction was for a felon possessing a firearm. Considering that the case for involuntary manslaughter was stronger, why did they convict him for accidentally picking up a firearm? The conviction reeks of tokenism and undermines the justice system. If something good is to come from Kate Steinle’s death, the conviction has to be more than a good scolding. An involuntary manslaughter conviction would have sent a strong message about gun safety. This was the message I got in my concealed carry class. My instructor was pretty adamant that if my gun was involved in an accidental discharge and someone died, I was going to jail. That is a good lesson I remember every time I handle a gun. If California cared about gun safety they should have taken the opportunity to emphasize what a person should do if they find a gun. A child or a person not familiar with guns should contact the police and let them handle it. A person more experienced with guns may want to safely secure the weapon before contacting the police. The gun may be lost or involved in a crime. An illegal immigrant high on sleeping pills he found in a trash can should walk away. Illegal immigrants with guns is a situation even sanctuary cities have to realize is a bad idea.

2016 Concealed Carry Growth In Ohio

Late last year I noticed that Buckeye Firearms Association was publishing concealed carry statistics for Ohio. As an example here is a recent post about the 2016 statistics, Annual Attorney General Summary on Concealed Carry: 2016 marks busiest year on record. Although my calculations of the total number of valid licenses did not match up as closely as I would like, I will gladly defer to their report. There are a lot of people with concealed carry licenses. My favorite quote from their report is:

For the person without a CHL, what this means is that anytime they look around and see 14 other people, odds are that one of them has a CHL. Concealed carry is mainstream, common sense and is close to most people on a daily basis. It works so well that most people are blissfully unaware that anyone else is carrying a gun.

Strong Concealed Carry Growth In Ohio In The Second Quarter

Ohio continued to show strong concealed carry growth in 2016 with 32,259 new licenses in the second quarter. Even though the number of new licenses dropped from the first quarter of 2016, it is still 58% higher than the fourth quarter of 2015. By my calculations, the renewal rate increased to 73% while the year over year growth of total licenses increased to 19%. Here is my updated table and graph. To see my last report and the explanation of how I calculate the total number of licenses, click here.

Date Licenses Issued Licenses Renewed Total Licenses Renewal Rate License YoY Growth Rate
1/1/2014 16,205 15,832 429,393 75% 17%
4/1/2014 16,004 15,058 437,709 66% 12%
7/1/2014 11,945 11,159 445,453 73% 9%
10/1/2014 13,912 10,097 455,663 73% 9%
1/1/2015 15,593 12,071 467,167 75% 9%
4/1/2015 19,608 12,042 480,297 65% 10%
7/1/2015 16,000 10,129 493,924 81% 11%
10/1/2015 20,388 10,309 510,850 75% 12%
1/1/2016 36,118 11,242 542,082 70% 16%
3/1/2016 32,259 11,276 570,274 73% 19%

Concealed Carry Statistics For Ohio

Selling Guns At Hardware Stores

On Sunday my wife and I were shopping for a new lawn mower and decided to check the lawn mower prices at our local hardware store. I thought this store was out of business since it has had such a difficult time competing with the nearby Home Depot and Lowes stores. We did not find a lawn mower but I was intrigued that out of the three store employees, two were working at the gun counter. Of the the seven customers in the store five customers were at the gun counter. A couple of years ago this store did not sell guns and now they have more guns and ammo customers than hardware customers.

Are You Capable Of Using A Weapon To Shoot Or Kill An Attacker?

In the comments for the post, 5 Questions Women Should Ask Before They Get a Gun, JayWye asked the question, “are you capable of using a weapon to shoot or kill an attacker?”  Most of the comments focused on guns but the interesting question is how comfortable are women with using self-defense weapons other than guns? Europe provides us with a few alternatives with mixed results. Recently a Danish teenager who said she was sexually assaulted now faces a fine for using pepper spray against her attacker. Over in Sweden Stieg Larsson in the book, The Girl Who Played with Fire, has Lisbeth Salander saying,

There were not so many physical threats that could not be countered with a decent hammer.

I carried pepper spray in the past and when I decided to test it, it would not spray. Oops! Tasers have a similar problem. What happens if you forget to check the battery? Hammers are reliable but down right brutal. In my humble opinion when it comes to a choice between pepper spray, tasers, hammers, or guns, I think most woman would be more comfortable carrying a gun. It is simple, reliable, and effective with a minimum of maintenance. Since art frequently imitates life I will leave it to Leigh Anne Touhy to have the final word.  Here is one of the best quotes from the movie, The Blind Side.

Alton: You hear me, bitch?

Leigh Anne Touhy: No, you hear me, BITCH!. You threaten my son, you threaten me. You so much as cross into downtown, you will be sorry. I’m in a prayer group with the D.A., I’m a member of the N.R.A. and I’m always packing.

Alton: Whatchu packin? .22? A little Saturday night special?

Leigh Anne Touhy: Yep. And it shoots just fine every other day of the week too.

Senator Sherrod Brown And Concealed Carry Laws

No Firearms SginSenator Sherrod Brown caught my attention with a recent comment about Rep. Ron Maag’s concealed carry bill that would allow individuals with concealed handgun licenses to carry guns in day care facilities, private planes, police departments and airport terminals before the metal detectors. It passed the Ohio House and is pending in the state Senate legislation. Here is what he said according to the Cincinnati.com:

“The Ohio Legislature’s passed a law to allow concealed weapons in day care centers, but interesting, this same Legislature, in its wisdom, doesn’t allow concealed weapons in the statehouse,” Brown said.

“When I say they’re lunatics, that’s what I’m talking about,” Brown continued. “People that think you should allow guns in day care centers but they’re protecting themselves by not allowing guns in their workplace, that would be in that category of lunatics.”

So is he upset that the law allows concealed carry in day care centers or that it continues to prohibit concealed carry in the legislature?

Last Sunday I was in a concealed carry class with three women. One of the women is both a veteran and a new mom. Although she was experienced with a rifle, a pistol is a better choice if you plan to carry a weapon while traveling around town. Unlike Israel we have panic attacks when people walk around with assault rifles. Since she is both comfortable and experienced with guns, I think it would be pretty normal for her to want to carry a concealed handgun into a day care center. If she is comfortable carrying a concealed handgun into a grocery store then carrying a concealed handgun into a day care center should not be any different. The only time anyone would know she was “carrying” is if a crazy person showed up and opened fire. The rules for engagement with lethal force are pretty similar to those used by soldiers and the police. Then every mom and dad would know and be grateful.

That leads me to the conclusion that Senator Brown was upset that legislators did not allow concealed carry in the legislature. Since most government buildings prohibit concealed weapons including handguns, continuing to prohibit concealed weapons in the legislature sounds pretty normal and makes the Senator sound like the lunatic. As a person who will try to “carry” most of the time when I get my license and gun, Rep. Maag’s bill is a common sense step forward at eliminating some of the gotcha’s of concealed carry. Like most concealed carry people I will try and follow the laws. Common sense makes the laws more effective. Just imagine that young mom dropping her kid off at day care.  Do you really want her to take her gun out of her holster and lock it up every time she goes into the day care? She is not a terrorist or a crazy person. She is a veteran. She is one of the good gals. Remember, Senator Brown, as my Senator I expect you to know the difference between a veteran and a terrorist. If you had done your job with terrorists and crazy people we would not buying guns.

Universal Background Check

I am surprised that Greg Gutfeld has not created a special category for banned studies. The Washington Post Fact Checker looked at the background check issue and found that the numbers that the President and many others are using come from data collected in 1994 and published in a 1977 study. The problem is that the study had two estimates for the number of people who have purchased guns without a background check, a 40% number that includes gifts and family transfers and a 14 to 22% number which does not. Since the universal background legislation does not require background checks for gun transactions between family members, the Post argues that it is misleading to use the 40% number in the debate. Here are some of the quotes from President Obama that earned him three Pinocchios.

“Why wouldn’t we want to close the loophole that allows as many as 40 percent of all gun purchases to take place without a background check?”

–President Obama, remarks on gun safety, March 28, 2013

“FACT: Nearly 40% of all gun sales don’t require a background check under current law. #DemandAction”

–tweet from @BarackObama, March 28

So here is my problem with universal background checks. It is a pretty ineffective tool at controlling guns going criminals and the criminally insane. I assume we can all agree that we are not going to get background checks on gun sales to criminals. Criminals are dumb but most are not dumb enough to complete a background check that will fail. From our recent mass murders  we can see that criminally insane people are  functional enough to acquire weapons without raising alarms during background checks. Even if we happen to create the perfect gun control legislation for the criminally insane, the criminally insane people can easily choose  other weapons of terror such as fire, poisons, and bombs to express themselves. Unless we are willing to deal with the mental health issue, it is just a matter of time until we have our next mass murder. This time it is assault weapons. Next time it might be a bomb. Universal background checks are just another burden heaped upon honest, sane people. Once again we are reminded that no good deed goes unpunished!