ShotSpotter: An Alternative Viewpoint

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For five years I lived in the most dangerous neighborhood in San Francisco, the Bayview-Hunter’s Point area. While this afforded the wife and me the very unique-for-SF ability to own a single family home with a modest backyard (we even had two chickens and a bit of a garden), a view of the Bay, a view of Candlestick Park where the 49’ers played at the time, and the best weather in the Sucker Free, it also came with regular gunfire. We lived there for a couple of years before the ShotSpotter system was installed, and for a couple of years after it went up. While it may very well be a gigantic waste of money and a total failure in some areas, as outlined by RF recently, it wasn’t in The Bayview. Heck, it may have been responsible for avoiding full-on, Ferguson-style riots stemming from a police shooting just two blocks from our house. Here’s my experience. . .

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On Flinging Poo and the Right to Self-Defense

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Reader Arthur Milton writes:

This was originally intended as a response to Bruce Krafft’s ‘Schooling a Young Scholar‘ posted last week, but then realized I had quite a bit more to say. I once read a bumper sticker that said, “Our political discussion has been reduced to reading each other’s bumper stickers.” At the time, I chuckled and thought that it was fairly original for a bumper sticker and moved on. For the record, I generally despise bumper stickers, so this was novel for me. However, as time has worn on, our political and cultural environment has consistently brought that bumper sticker to mind. I now believe the statement can be expanded to say, “Our political discussion has been reduced to reading each other’s asynchronous communication.” I say this because I don’t believe there is any actual discussion taking place, or rather there is no actual discourse. We are living at a point where . . .

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Are Firing Squads the “Most Humane Method” of Execution?

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Earlier this week, reports the Salt Lake Tribune, Utah Governor Gary Herbert, a Republican, signed a bill re-establishing firing squads as a ‘secondary method for executions’, in the event that drugs necessary for lethal injections – the primary method of executions in the Beehive State – are unable to be obtained. Bloomberg Business recently published an article by Matt Stroud that argues in favor of firing squads for death penalty executions. The reason? Lethal injections have proven to be problematic . . .

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Attention Anti-Gunners: Freedom ≠ Anarchy

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Stephanie Heck doesn’t trust her neighbors. She doesn’t trust high school seniors, college students, and young adults in general. She believes that anybody 18 or older, given the opportunity to exercise the natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil and Constitutional right to own and carry the weapon of their choice without let or hindrance is a “profoundly absurd scheme” which will lead to “firearms anarchy.” Whatever that means.  She says so right here in her herald-dispatch.com pieceState doesn’t need ‘firearms anarchy’. Speaking of West Virginia’s constitutional carry bill . . . 

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Random Thoughts About Eric Holder and Brian Terry

Recently unveiled statue of Eric Holder (courtesy examiner.com)

I don’t have a lot of respect for Eric Holder, regardless of his skin color. I say that because the U.S. Attorney General has a history of playing the race card against his critics. Given Holder’s propensity for accusing his detractors of racial bias, I’m wary that any discussion of his policies regarding guns would somehow come back the fact that I am white. How could I possibly understand his perspective on American justice, indeed, any black man’s perspective of American justice? Well guess what? I’m going to play the Jewish card. Sort of . . .

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New York Times Demands M855 Ammo Ban

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The New York Times is quite possibly the least gun friendly publication in the United States. They’ve previously shown an utter contempt and disregard for fact checking and proper use of statistics when their “conclusions” paint gun owners and gun ownership in a bad light, and today’s editorial is no different. Titled “Protect the Police From Armor-Piercing Bullets,” the article is a re-hash of all the major Obama administration talking points in an effort to portray M855 as a menace to society that needs to be stopped. Shockingly, however, the Times fails to use any actual logic, statistics, or facts to make their case. Instead they build their case for a ban solely on the emotional appeal of loaded phrases to trick their readers into falling in line with their agenda. Let’s take this apart piece by piece.

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A Message to Gun Owners: Be An Ambassador

If you’ve been checking in on TTAG over the last few days, you know that I spent last weekend at the Bushnell Brawl. It was my first precision rifle match, and I had an absolute blast doing it, though I think the time and financial commitments to be successful will keep me from doing it seriously. My first exposure to the community at large was Thursday night at the shooter prep meeting. I stood in this huge barn surrounded by 119 white men, 1 African American guy, 1 guy who was a quasi Pacific Islander, and a sum total of 8 women, 3 competing and 5 there to support their partners. Looking around the room . . .

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It’s Time to Do Away With C&R FFLs

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I recently found myself shopping for some new homeowners insurance. As I have quite a few personal firearms, I asked the agent about the limitations of the policy she wanted to sell me. The agent checked the dec sheet and she asked me if I had a collectors license. I said no. The ensuing conversation got interesting in a hurry . . .

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Alaska Court to Weigh Wrongful Death Suit Against FFL

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Interesting news from the last frontier. The heart of the matter being adjudicated in a wrongful death suit is whether an illegal sale occurred by Juneau gun dealer Rayco Sales and whether or not civil liability exists. This is a complicated matter that I’m watching closely. The ATF has begun proceedings to revoke 82-year-old Ray Coxe’s federal firearms license. He’s operated Rayco Sales for 45 years. As of this writing he was slated to terminate all legal firearm sales last week . . .

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NE State Senator Kills Military Spouse CCW Bill…Because Gay Marriage

As reported earlier, the Nebraska legislature was considering a measure sponsored by State Senator Dave Bloomfield that would exempt military spouses from the standard 180-day waiting period to ‘establish residency’ in the Cornhusker State before they could apply for a license to carry a concealed firearm. The legislature has now tabled the bill, though, due to concern on the part of Senator Bloomfield, that the bill might cause “uncertainty” because…the Supreme Court will be reviewing cases involving same sex marriage this summer . . .

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Boston U. Trustees to “Socially Responsible” Investment Group: Drop Dead

The forces arrayed against our civil rights are starting to recognize that a single, all-encompassing legal win against the right to keep and bear arms in Congress or the judiciary is just not in the cards for now. So they push in areas where they believe the terrain is favorable for a win — places such as the media and academia. This strategy was explained in a December 2013 article in the old New Republic, which breathlessly mentioned gun banners in the same (virtual) breath as people who protested Apartheid-era South Africa, the tobacco industry, and the fossil fuel industry. They showed surprising restraint in leaving out human chattel slavery, though that may be because those who fight against slavery have often found it advisable to keep firearms and other weapons handy . . .

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Carry On-Body Or Not At All

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Off-body carry is a lot like treating a gun like a talisman. If just having a gun somewhere nearby would ward off criminals, then it’s great. But if you actually need to use your firearm, well…not so much. Actually drawing and presenting a firearm from an off-body carry solution is generally more difficult than most people appreciate. Give it a try sometime. Stick an (unloaded or training) gun in a briefcase, purse or backpack, close it as you would if you were walking down the street, then try to draw and present under time pressure. Then try to picture how long it would take you to do that under real stress . . .

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