We end the week the same way we started it – talking about Mayor Bloomberg’s MAIG mafia and their campaign against Arkansas Senator Mark Pryor. Pryor has countered Hizzoner’s attack ads with an ad of his own. In it, he states, “The mayor of New York City is running ads against me because I opposed President Obama’s gun control legislation. Nothing in the Obama plan would have prevented tragedies like Newtown, Aurora, Tucson or even Jonesboro. I’m committed to finding real solutions to gun violence while protecting our Second Amendment rights…No one from New York or Washington tells me what to do. I listen to Arkansas.” We’ll see if Arkansas is listening to him rather than Mayor Mike. Also from earlier this week . . .
There’s more on the shooting of two diplomats in a “gun-free zone” strip club in Caracas, Venezuela. The Independent reports an employee there saw them “arguing and hitting each other outside the club” and claims “one of them pulled out a gun and shot the other in the stomach and the leg.” They also state “it still remains unclear how the men were able to enter the club with guns as the venue has metal detectors at its entrance and features ‘gun free zone’ signs outside.” Maybe someone should ask State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell about that so we can see him squirm (about something other than Benghazi).
We’ve all experienced the effects of the ammunition shortage. The Indian Army is having the same problem. According to Indian Army chief, V. K. Singh, the army is short of ammo and if war should break out, they could run out as quickly as a couple of days. I’m no security analyst but it seems to me that’s the kind of thing you don’t want to advertise to your enemies.
Thinkprogress.org is upset about Alabama’s (and 21 other states’) “stand your ground” laws. This follows a couple of cases in the Cotton State where “an individual who fatally shot another will escape any criminal liability” for their actions. “Even after the outrage and movement for reform that followed the tragic death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin more than a year ago, not a single state has successfully repealed or scaled back one of these laws.” Maybe there’s a good reason for that. Could it be that lawmakers in those states support victims’ rights over those of criminals?
Moms Demand Action again. It seems they’ve just discovered that Starbucks follows local laws and allowing customers to carry (open or concealed) firearms in stores where it’s legal. In an email they state, “As mothers, we wonder why Starbucks is willing to put our children at risk by allowing customers to openly carry loaded weapons in its stores.” After all, you know how dangerous it is just being in the presence of a holstered weapon. Starbucks takes a common-sense approach to the issue: “We comply with local laws and statutes in the communities we serve. Our long-standing approach to this issue remains unchanged and we abide by the laws that permit open carry in 43 U.S. states. Where these laws don’t exist, openly carrying weapons in our stores is prohibited.”
Reuters reports that “A unanimous panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said the Obama administration acted within its authority to adopt the 2011 rule” which “requires stores in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas to notify federal law enforcement when someone buys two or more of a specific type of firearm within five business days.” Soooo…will the ATF have to report all those guns that went across the border in Fast and Furious, too? (Yeah, I know. Don’t even waste your time answering that.)
Remember Josh Welch, the Maryland kid who was suspended for chewing a Pop-Tart into the shape of a gun? He’s just been given a Junior Life Membership in the NRA. Nicholaus Kipke, leader of the Republican minority in the lower house of the Maryland legislature, paid the $550 for the membership fee stating “I was embarrassed that my county” would suspend him over such a triviality. Josh’s family doesn’t own any guns (and with Maryland’s new gun laws, that’s likely to stay that way). And Josh has never fired a gun of the non-pastry variety, but his lawyer approved of the membership saying it would teach him proper handling of firearms (and hopefully, Pop-Tarts).
The police department in a Chicago suburb of St. Charles is selling some of the guns they obtained via a buyback program. Police Chief James Lamkin said about 20 firearms from the buyback and court seizures will be sold to gun dealers. “There’s value in these guns. They’re not illegal guns. Quite honestly, it’s a bottom line for us.” Can you say, “conflict of interests?”
The LAPD stormed the offices of game studio Robotoki last night after a “curious designer” pressed a newly-installed panic button. The building was empty except for studio founder Robert Bowling but the police took no chances and took him into custody. They apparently ended up “in a tense showdown with a life-sized statue of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2‘s Simon ‘Ghost’ Riley, which the police mistook for a gunman.” After 15 minutes, “the officers emerged, laughing [because] they had mistaken Ghost for a real threat and had nearly taken him down.” It ended well enough, though, with no fines for the false alarm and “with a round of video games using the office’s NES controller table.”
Business Insider took a tour of PTR Industries, one of the companies that has decided to leave Connecticut in protest of their new disarmament laws. BI tried to send company CEO Josh Fiorini on a guilt trip by asking “how he felt after learning about the shootings in Newtown.” He responded that he and his employees were devastated, but ultimately decided that gun manufacturers are not the problem. “I probably feel the same way an engineer at GM feels when he drives by a car accident.” Otherwise it’s a surprisingly well-balanced piece and the photos show the day-to-day workings of a gun maker.