Thursday, March 26, 2009
March 17, 2009, Washington Times - Now President Obama is quietly ending the federal firearms program, risking public safety on airlines in the name of an anti-gun ideology.
The Obama administration this past week diverted some $2 million from the pilot training program to hire more supervisory staff, who will engage in field inspections of pilots.
This looks like completely unnecessary harassment of the pilots. The 12,000 Federal Flight Deck Officers, the pilots who have been approved to carry guns, are reported to have the best behavior of any federal law enforcement agency. There are no cases where any of them has improperly brandished or used a gun. There are just a few cases where officers have improperly used their IDs.
Fewer than one percent of the officers have any administrative actions brought against them and, we are told, virtually all of those cases “are trumped up.”
Take a case against one flight officer who had visited the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles within the last few weeks. While there, the pilot noticed that federal law enforcement officers can, with the approval of a superior, obtain a license plate that cannot be traced, a key safety feature for law enforcement personnel. So the pilot asked if, as a member of the federal program, he was eligible. The DMV staffer checked and said “no.” The next day administrative actions were brought against the pilot for “misrepresenting himself.” These are the kinds of cases that President Obama wants to investigate.
Since Mr. Obama’s election, pilots have told us that the approval process for letting pilots carry guns on planes slowed significantly. Last week the problem went from bad to worse. Federal Flight Deck Officers - the pilots who have been approved to carry guns - indicate that the approval process has stalled out.
Pilots cannot openly speak about the changing policies for fear of retaliation from the Transportation Security Administration. Pilots who act in any way that causes a “loss of confidence” in the armed pilot program risk criminal prosecution as well as their removal from the program. Despite these threats, pilots in the Federal Flight Deck Officers program have raised real concerns in multiple interviews.
Arming pilots after Sept. 11 was nothing new. Until the early 1960s, American commercial passenger pilots on any flight carrying U.S. mail were required to carry handguns. Indeed, U.S. pilots were still allowed to carry guns until as recently as 1987. There are no records that any of these pilots (either military or commercial) ever causing any significant problems.
Screening of airplane passengers is hardly perfect. While armed marshals are helpful, the program covers less than 3 percent of the flights out of Washington D.C.’s three airports and even fewer across the country. Sky marshals are costly and quit more often than other law-enforcement officers.obama_tear
Armed pilots are a cost-effective backup layer of security. Terrorists can only enter the cockpit through one narrow entrance, and armed pilots have some time to prepare themselves as hijackers penetrate the strengthened cockpit doors. With pilots, we have people who are willing to take on the burden of protecting the planes for free. About 70 percent of the pilots at major American carriers have military backgrounds.
Frankly, as a matter of pure politics, we cannot understand what the administration is thinking. Nearly 40 House Democrats are in districts were the NRA is more popular than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. We can’t find any independent poll in which the public is demanding that pilots disarm. Why does this move make sense?
Only anti-gun extremists and terrorist recruits are worried about armed pilots. So why is the Obama administration catering to this tiny lobby at the expense of public safety?"
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
You think I am exaggerating. Let me put it this way. Think of having to get up two hours early to go to the gas station to get five gallons of fuel and then pay $7.00 a gallon.
Friends of mind have been reporting that some firearms retailers are actually breaking down boxes of ammo and selling them in bags of twenty five for handguns. Every on line retailer I have looked at all across the country is out of stock and showing the end of May as the earliest restocking.
Tonight I went into the local Wally World near me thinking that maybe it might be an untapped honey hole.
It looked like a super market before a blizzard. Nothing was there. .25 acp was fine, there was one box of .357 Magnum, where under normal circumstances there should have been ten and probably another fifty boxes in the store room. One.
9mm-none .45acp-none-.380 acp none and on and on.
But your thinking yeah but that is handgun ammo,
There was no .30-30 ammo either. For you unaware creatures outside the gun world. Think cowboy lever action rifle, the great american deer gun. Nor any other deer catridge.
I bought a couple boxes of .22 LR hollow points and thought "should I buy all of it?"
Then I decided to drive to another Wally World. I barely fared any better. Two remaining boxes of .45 automatic sat on otherwise barren shelves. I bought them.
I have lots of theories as to why, none of them complicated. But I will tell you this much. I walked out of those stores spooked.
Like really really really spooked.
I hope this is over reaction on the part of a nation of gun owners, and not the foreshadowing of something much darker.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
I've never subscribed to the whole one gun theory, or the well known quote "beware of the man who carries only one gun because he probably knows how to use it." I've known plenty of better than fair shots in my time and none of them were one-gun-men. If there is any other reason life is too short and there is many a fine gun to be had out there.
I've kept a list of guns that I'd like to own scrawled on an old piece of paper and every once in a while I get to scratch a line through one of them. For years I had wanted perhaps one of the easiest guns to find, the Smith & Wesson Model 10 revolver chambered in .38 Special. The old policeman's gun. It is to this day seen carried in many a security guards holster, and is a more than proven handgun. Every bit as famous as its more relished and famous counter parts like the Colt Single Action Army or the 1911, it is readily dismissed by modern arm chair experts as not a real gun fighters gun (what ever that means anyway).
As I live in the mid-west and the chance of encountering Ursus arctos horribilis when I'm in the great outdoors is non-existant I'm freed not to carry a large hand canon. Missouri does have its share of black bears and even mountain lions that rove not just the Ozark mountains, and six rounds of good quality ammo fired into the puss of any marauding creature be it four legged or two is just the bill for the sale. Yet this old war horse of a gun transcends that point.
Loaded with wad cutter target ammo I can teach a new shooter how to use a very contending handgun and turn around and use the exact same load to hunt rabbits on a snowy winters hike without the large concussion of a shotgun disturbing the winters peace. It does something else very nice in the winter time that most auto loaders don't do. It allows me to shoot with gloves on due to its large trigger guard and double action trigger that I don't have to worry about firing until I'm ready. I can not say the same about my beloved 1911.
The first spring after we were married the Wife and I took our recent addition to the Family (the Dog) out for a hike. As we cut up a wooded hillside I just happen to look down at my feet to see a nicely coiled copper head laying in a sunny spot. From a yards range I was able to deliver two fast shots of snake shot from a four inch barrel gun that sent the belly crawler onto his reward (and I have no guilt about it what-so-ever).
Consequently I have shot snakes with one of my 1911s loaded with snake shot but the pistol renders itself a single shot and the slide has to be racked due to the low power of the loads not cycling the gun. When I owned my NAA mini-mag, shooting snakes required that I have all five chambers loaded with snake medicine to semi-effectively kill one decent size snake because the barrel was so short and the powder charge was l-i-g-h-t.
The auto gun loaded with snake shot also leaves me at a tactical disadvantage. If I would encounter two legged predators on my hike and a melee should ensue I am force to fire once and clear the slide or clear the slide once or twice depending on how the magazine is loaded and then engage those who have come to do me harm. Not a situation I would want to be in if the drop was got on me and I was one handed for any reason.
The venerable Model 10 can be carried to the deer stand in accompaniment of the rifle. Loaded with stout rounds should Mr. Buck arrive within conversation distance where a rifle couldn't be gotten into play or a coup-de-grace need be delivered the 4 inch Smith will put venison into the deep freeze for the coming year.
There are social advantages to a trusty old six shooter. It's appearance is looked at somewhat benignly by all but the most aggravating of gun haters. After all didn't Barney Fife carry one?
Yet many still look at the .38 special as a cartridge time has passed by as a man stopper. The truth is that it will always be the man fighting and not the caliber that matters, and history validates this through many examples but I will give you one example of one legend.
Wild Bill Hickock
On July 21, 1865 in Springfield, Missouri Hickock engaged Dave Tutt in a psudeo gun fight. I say psudeo because Tutt fired at Hickock one or two times and Hickock turned and fired once striking Tutt through the heart and the fight was over as Tutt would die moments later. There are two signicant points to be made here.
One is that Hickock was armed with cap-n-ball revolvers (some sources say a .44 Dragoon while most contend that he was carrying a pair of his beloved .36 Navy Colts). Ballistically speaking the .36 would fall some where around a .380 ACP by modern standards while the .44 Dragoon would have be similar to a hot loaded .38 Special.
The second point. Hickock shot Tutt from seventy-five yards away.
Even after the cartridge pistols became widely available Hickock still carried his beloved .36 Navy Colts because he had looked the devil in the face and survived on numerous occasions up until the day he was assassinated by Phil Coe who shot him in the back of the head with a .45.
Another example that exemplifies a man and his personal choice of armament.
McGivern was and still is renowned as one of the best handgunners that ever lived. His Guinness world record for "The greatest rapid-fire feat" (set on August 20, 1932 at the) still stands. This feat consisted of firing five shots from 15 feet which could be covered by a silver half-dollar piece in 45/100's of a second.
His other shooting feats were:
- He could break six simultaneously hand thrown clay pigeons (standard trap targets) in the air before they hit the ground.
- He could hit a tin can hand thrown 20 ft. in the air six times before it hit the ground.
- He could shoot-drive a tack or nail into wood.
- He could shoot the spots out of playing cards, or even split a playing card edge on.
- He could shoot a dime on the fly.
There is little doubt that any man armed with a modern master blaster 6000 would have been greatly out matched regardless of magazine capacity had he encountered McGivern and his pair of .38 double action Smiths.
Jim Cirillo of the infamous NYPD's Roving Stakeout Squad in the 1960s and 1970s carried a pair of Smith .38s. He survived and thrived through seventeen gun fights in his thirty year law enforcement career and never felt under armed by his choice. Not to mention a couple of presidential citations for marksmanship.
The .38 Special is still the most popular cartridge for hand loading ones own ammunition, and remains one of the most popular choices for bulls-eye shooters, rank and file outdoorsmen, to the first time handgun owner. Having traveled from Mexico to India I have yet to see a country where at least several policemen or security officers are not armed with a six shot .38 Special, with its only rival being the 9mm.
As I write this my own 4 inch pencil barreled Model 10 Smith stoked with +P hollow points sits secreted away in a quick access location ready to defend my home. My wife sleeps securely when I am away because there is a handgun that requires no magazine to insert or safety catch flip in order to make the gun go.
Some say the revolver in general is dead but I would have to disagree. If left with only one handgun to choose I'm not sure what I would pick for several different reasons left to consider but a .38 Special in some consideration would make it into the top 3.
When I bought mine in the Spring 2006 I paid the very light weight price of $279.00 which in a world of $1500 in house custom 1911s (which is my favorite handgun by the way) $1221.00 would buy a lot of ammo, holsters and reloading equipment and maybe even some training to boot.
I had deplaned in Karachi airport and had two very large black duffel bags slung over each shoulder...no wonder they stopped me. Suddenly I had a very serious looking man with an AK slung over his chest sticking his palm in my face. Welcome to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
My bags were quickly searched for whatever it was they thought I was bringing in, which I guessed to be dope. Just as soon as I was detained I was cut loose to join my Principal (that whom I protect) and the rest of our party and off we went.
Those bags looked... well interesting. No doubt because, well they were large and black and heavy. One was loaded with clothes and the other with every thing but the kitchen sink as far as gear went for working over seas for the next 16 days. Knives (I always carry more than three when I travel), ASP Baton, radios, three dozen cliff bars, beef jerky, a very large self help medical kit, Meds, etc. When I finally got home I assessed what I had used and what I conceptually needed but didn't have to use, and what proved useless, so as to know not what to bring the next time.
Going in blind or someplace radically new for an extended period of time gets me a little gear itchy. I blame my youth for that. A product of the Boy Scouts (1st class) and Macgyver, and my old man. He gave me my first pocket knife (a knock off Swiss Army) out of his tackle box when we were on family vacation in Florida when I was 8. Since July 1982 I haven't left the house with out a knife. Even in elementary school I carried that knife every day. Dad even busted me once when he was trying to cut something and I pulled out that knife. Since I had just come from school he asked me if I took it to school, I said that I did. My dad's response was pretty classic "well don't tell anybody or they'll throw you under the school for that." And I never did. But I learned something from that cheap knife that set the standard a lot for my life. Be ready.
That's my question to you. Are you ready? Ready for what? What ever it is when the shit goes south. But specifically not something like natural disasters or government take overs. I mean are you ready for the evil, bad things that you pass every day of your life that you are unaware of.
Oh wait you've got that CCW permit, your fine.
I read an article last week from a gun rag and the author said "If you carry always carry." He is more than essentially right. Except he failed to mention what to do when you can't. I carry a handgun probably more diligently than most other "civilians" and maybe even off duty LEOs, to the point that NOT having a gun can be akin to not wearing shoes, something doesn't feel right. But having a gun doesn't make you ready. It makes you armed. There is a big difference.
Which is why some gun writers really get my goad. They talk about how you REALLY need to drop $1500 bucks on that semi-custom 1911 with a light rail, but when they show pictures of these dopes at the range they are 100 pounds or more over weight, and would probably die from heart attacks when the shooting started.
So this is where I ask. Are you ready physically...and mentally?
Are you in shape to fight?
Do you even know how to do that?
I assure you that I ask with no sarcasm in my head. Target shooting is not man shooting, and holsters and spare mags have nothing to do with full bore fist-to-flesh contact, and someday that's where you might find yourself. On vacation with your wife, your family, your girlfriend or co-workers where your pistoli is locked up in your house 2,500 miles away in the States.
Your mind is what makes the arm work which in turn works the hand that works the gun. Just as your melon does that is also gives you flight or fight capability. So if the gun isn't there and flight is not an option then you are left with un-gunned fighting. Notice I didn't say unarmed, and notice I did say fighting..as opposed to cowering.
See there is very little in life that I find to be random. Everything stems for something else, and unfortunately we can find ourselves right in the middle of it, even though we didn't have anything to do with it.
People snap! in society all the time. You know this, but you don't buy that its going to happen to you one day.
Neither did these folks:
-Man Beats Teen Girl Over Who Was First at McDonald's (Wednesday, October 01, 2008)
-An unidentified fellow passenger suddenly stabbed a man sleeping next to him, decapitated him and waved the severed head at horrified witnesses standing outside. (Thursday, July 31, 2008 )
-A Woodbury teenager who underwent a heart transplant around five years ago has been accused of hatching a gruesome plot to murder a stranger at random.( Thursday, August 14, 2008 )
-Austrian Horror Dad: I Was 'Born to Be a Rapist'
-Tokyo Slasher Suspect Purchased Stash of Knives Before Stabbing Massacre, Police Say
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
One of the most viable pieces of intel into the mind of a killer ready to rock-and-roll is that of Seung-Hui Cho aka the Virginia Tech Killer. Below is the link to his tirade on youtube. I strongly suggest you watch it. He's dead and no you don't honor him by watching it, you gain intelligence by learning from it.
Every day of your life there are people that are just like Cho in your world and mine that we have no clue about. Ticking time bombs that are waiting to go off. And one day you might find yourself in a position to have to deal with them. Watch it and get chills from it, but learn to ready for it as well.
I'll end on this note of a man who confronted an attacker in his home and sent him to hell, and he did it with his bare hands. Because at the end of the day its willingness that wins.
Indianapolis- A convicted sex offender died Sunday during a struggle with a father who found a naked man in or near his 17-year old daughter's bedroom, police said.
Police responding to a call from the city's northwest side about 3:20 a.m. found 64-year-old Robert McNally on the hallway floor with his arm around the neck of 52-year-old David T. Meyers, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police said Meyers was naked except for a mask and latex gloves and had entered the home through a window near the girl's bedroom with rope, condoms and a knife. He was familiar with the home's layout because it belonged to a relative, police said.
The girl awoke and screamed when she saw the man in her room, police said. The father responded and struggled with the intruder while the girl's mother phoned 911.When the feces hits the impeller you have to be willing to take the fight to them, and break them of their will to continue to slaughter anyone else or you have to take their life from them so that you can saves innocent bystanders. And at the end of the day it will be you, because everyone else will be under a chair.
At some point in the recent past I was sitting with the Wife in a meeting with some fellow church members that had a role in mid level leadership. Trying to be a little vague here its not something that comes naturally to me.
As we all sat in a room discussing various matters the topic eventually leaned to discussing the people who fell under said leadership responsibilities. I was amazed to here statements like "How can we help them do better?", or "I just want them to get it, or at least have something get through." Again I'm paraphrasing to keep the guilty parties anonymous as much as possible. But the rest of the day I was bugged by those statements, and I wasn't really sure why. It finally hit me.
I think there are a vast majority of Christians who are Buddhists, and they don't know it. I'm not talking about California Vegans, who do yoga (which isn't bad for you), and like the Hippie version of Christ, and seek higher enlightenment. I'm talking about the A-typical conservative Christian soccer mom, football dad, American Idol watching crowd.
Here's the deal. The deal being my take on it.
Since that meeting I've listened to a lot of other Christians talk about living out a life of Christ with other Christians, especially those whom they in some capacity teach to. And routinely enough there are statements like "get it, help them to see, etc."
Now this bloggering isn't about Christians and Non-Christians, but Christian on Christian action.
Those statements reek of wanting the "lesser" Christian for lack of a better term to get higher enlightenment from the Christian experience. Hence the Buddhist part. This is were Christianity becomes a religion and stops being a faith.
But wait aren't we all supposed to strive to do better???
Well better in what way exactly. Be a better person? Sure I guess in that generic form of the statement. But here is the real scoop. The real story from a life inside Christ. As a Christian, you don't ever become a "better" person. Your lips still lie, your eyes still lust, you still have the desire to obtain physical things to make better your life. None of that goes away.
Christ didn't come to earth and have all of God's wrath taken out on him, or better yet have God turn His back on His own Son for us to become better or more enlightened, or so that we could "get it" what ever it is.
Christ's execution was to do one thing. Bridge a broken relationship between a Holy, which means perfect and infinite Creator and a completely imperfect person. But that is also where the message of salvation starts and ends. We as people do nothing...nothing...n-o-t-h-i-n-g to earn or get salvation from God. Jesus did that. Period.
Your actions, your moments of truth and clarity, your working at the Church, helping out a stranded motorist all good things, but they don't earn you into heaven. Because there is no earning God's favor.
Man has certain flaws, faults, impurites, limitations, and weakenesses that can not be over come. That is just the fact of the matter. You can not reach a higher level of being human, you can not become a demi-god if you do enough works or enough meditation.
Thus in order for a broken relationship between man and God to be restored there has to be Grace. Grace being this incredibly indispensable gift from God that restores and makes us right, i.e. perfect before God. And that is what Christ did.
You have to look at that and say one of two things. Yes or No. that's it. You either buy it or you don't.
History outside of the bible tells us that Jesus was a Rabbi (teacher) that taught his fellow man to love one another and to be kind to each other. To love your neighbor as yourself. Which is true He did say those very things.
But Jesus wasn't executed, walked to the modern equivalent of a electric chair, because He was preaching love. No Government kills Mr. Rogers, or Ned Flanders.
Jesus from the perspective of the man on the street some 2000 years ago was killed because He claimed to be God. Which was heresy amongst the Jews and punishable by death. Jesus was a Jew and knew Jewish law so in claiming to be God, He was fully aware of the consequences that lay in store for Him. Death. Death by suspension. Suspension from your wrists, until it killed you. Hours and hours of the worst agony imaginable. So in order to accept this. Jesus was either a man who was fundamentally insane and claimed to be something He was not or He was who He claimed to be. That's it. There is no third position, no additional arguments to be made. It was one of the two.
And through that is how man and God are unified. Our part is how we live our life yes, and making the decision to look at God an accept or reject Him. But there are no good Christians, or better Christians.
The man who accepted Christ at 15, the man at 28 who see's he needs God and finds himself on his knees at 2 o'clock on Tuesday, to the woman of 85 who spent her life rejecting God and now on her death bed sees that there is only Christ and a love and forgiveness that extends beyond time, and not a fire insurance policy are all equal to God. Their time reading God's word, doing good deeds or not all are equal to Him.
His Grace is sufficient.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
By calling attention to ‘a well regulated militia’, the ’security’ of the nation, and the right of each citizen ‘to keep and bear arms’, our founding fathers recognized the essentially civilian nature of our economy. Although it is extremely unlikely that the fears of governmental tyranny which gave rise to the Second Amendment will ever be a major danger to our nation, the Amendment still remains an important declaration of our basic civilian-military relationships, in which every citizen must be ready to participate in the defense of his country. For that reason, I believe the Second Amendment will always be important.”
John F. Kennedy, April 1960
A few years back I decided to scale back my armament when I traveled by Air on "low risk" jobs by leaving my 1911 at home and, p...