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The New York Times is on an anti-gun jihad. (Again. Still.) Yesterday, the Gray Lady revealed the shocking news that people who’ve paid their debt to society are reclaiming their gun rights. The money shot: “That question — whether the restorations pose a risk to public safety — has received little study, in part because data can be hard to come by.” A dearth that doesn’t give the Times a moment’s pause for thought. Today, the Business Day section feels free to conflate, confabulate and kvetch about firearms confiscated by the TSA—without troubling with the facts of the matter. Well, there are some. Underneath the headline Knuckleheads and Worse, Bringing Guns in Carry-ons, snarky Joe Sharkey [above right] goes all of ten paragraphs before launching his own dietribe [sic] . . .

This particular firearms issue, to me, reflects a culture in which laws covering the possession of guns are becoming increasingly looser. Lots of Americans carry guns. While I haven’t carried a firearm since I was required to in Vietnam, I happen to live in southern Arizona, where the Wild West is not that distant a memory.

In about an hour, for example, I can drive to Tombstone, site of the fabled gunfight at the O.K. Corral. But during that drive across the desert, I can also reflect on the fact that one of the events leading to that 1881 shootout was the insistence by Virgil Earp, a marshal, and his brother Wyatt that their antagonists, the Clanton and McLaury brothers, adhere to Tombstone’s ban on carrying firearms in town.

Few of the most ardent firearms advocates would argue that it’s a good idea for a passenger to try to board an airplane with a gun. But I have to wonder, given the white-hot politics of gun control, whether some travelers adequately understand that it is an extremely serious offense to deliberately try to take a gun onto a plane.

That, dear readers, is Mr. Sharkey’s way of saying guns-on-planes advocates are nuts and gun owners are stupid. While we could (and have) debated the reasons why some lawful firearms owners forget to remove their gun from their carry-on, or attempt to smuggle their weapon from point A to point B, suffice it to say this security issue has caused untold amounts of pain, fear, suffering, murder and mayhem. Oh wait. It hasn’t.

To his credit, Sharkey leaves it to The Brady Campaign to tell the Times’ intellectual audience who’s pulling the stupid gun owners’ strings.

“It could be that people aren’t getting the news that you just don’t bring your gun to the airport,” spokeswoman Caroline Brewer tells the Times. “The National Rifle Association in recent years has been trying to expand the number of places that people can take their guns — restaurants and bars, stadiums and other places. So it could be that there is a sense by some gun owners, why not take my gun to the airport? Maybe people just aren’t getting the word that, listen, you simply don’t bring your gun to the airport.”

Kinda dumb. Sorta like the people who don’t get the “shall not be infringed” part of the Second Amendment.

UPDATE via email from Mr. Sharkey: “You misrepresent what I said, which is that people who forget they have a gun in their bag at an airport checkpoint are knuckleheads, and in violation of basic gun-safety precepts. Any responsible gun-owner should agree with this. By the way, I belong to the NRA. JS”

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  1. The winds are blowing in the direction gun rights in the view of the majority of the public, and fools like this can’t handle it. So they lash out any chance they can from their bully pulpit. Like any good leftist, when at a lack of a decently rational, logical, or statistical argument (which is all the time), they just pull either the race card or ad hominem attacks.

    What they don’t realize is no one cares what they have to say or what their meaningless opinion is. It’s the NYT…their editorials are preaching to the choir, they ain’t changing anyone’s mind.

  2. I have to agree with Silver. Besides, who even reads the New York Times anymore? Aren’t they suffering from a loss of subscribers and readers?

    Personally, while I may never desire to carry a firearm everywhere I should still have the right and the choice.

  3. No suprise hear sour grapes come from New York Times. If look New York city see how bad gun control has fail there much easyer blame gun owener other states becuase there not have troubles New York city is. Fact gun control has worked in any citys states courtys that have used infact made crime take place in those place higher rate than counrty states city that do not use gun control. State denyle what New York Times Msnbc live in over owener state gun owener ship. There stupid becuase they can not do not want see states citys counrtys that give right for people owen care guns on them are safer than city states do not,

  4. I partially agree with Mr. Sharkey insofar as you should know the position and condition of your firearms at all times. You should also be aware of where you can and cannot take them. A JetBlue pilot recently tried to take a handgun in his carry-on bag and, some time ago, a North or South Carolina elected official did the same thing. Most of these firearms-through-security issues are flubs and should come with a significant slap on the wrist after a reasonable amount of questioning to make sure the person is not actually a security threat. However, there’s a lot of no-guns signs before you get to the security checkpoint so I can’t imagine that many people would miss them. It might be the penny-wise-pound-foolish folks who are trying to save the money on checking a bag with the gun in it and sneak it in their carry-on. Fines and lawyer fees are a lot more than the checked-bag fee.

    The liberalization of gun laws is going to have this type of effect. Unfortunately, it does reflect poorly on gun owners who are generally held to a high standard when it comes to knowing where they left the heater. Yes, I hold LEOs to an even higher standard… one left his gun in a bathroom stall in Houston Bush Intercontinental Airport a month or so ago.

  5. Hey, it’s the New York Times, so whaddaya expect? Personally, I think the existence of the Times is a compelling reason to own a large caged bird.

  6. Few of the most ardent firearms advocates would argue that it’s a good idea for a passenger to try to board an airplane with a gun

    Whaddaya mean it’s not a good idea for passengers to be armed?!? 3,000+ dead on 9-11-01 wasn’t enough for you? But I am not ‘unreasonable’, I’m willing to ‘compromise’ on the issue: If the airline will list commercial ammo suitable for (G-d forbid it should ever come to this) use on an airplane at altitude I will happily make sure that I am carrying only those loads. If they don’t want to publish such a list then they can provide the needed ammo to passengers at the gate, bringing the non-frangible ammo along to be given back to passengers when they disembark and return the airline’s rounds.
    See? I can agree to ‘common-sense’ regulations!

  7. I’ve heard other NRA members trumpet gun grabbing positions before. Bill Engval when he was on Maher was clearly against semi-automatic rifles.

    Don’t fall for their arguments, don’t give ground. That’s where it starts.

    • I didn’t forget nothing (except good grammar).

      Each individual gun owner is responsible for gun safety. It’s wrong to bring a gun to an airport, or anywhere else where it is illegal to do so. (There are circumstances where an individual may choose to bring a gun where it is not legal to do so, but that is civil disobedience, not a gun safety issue per se.) On this we can all agree.

      My point: the writer wasn’t seeing this “issue” in its proper perspective.

      While the absolute number of people who bring/leave a gun in their carry-on may be high, the percentage of gun owners who do so is statistically insignificant. And a fraction of them do so “artfully” (i.e. intentionally). This article assumes that the mistakes of these “knuckleheads” is a major, serious problem. It isn’t. How many firearms have been involved in a negligent discharge on an aircraft in the last twenty years? How many armed high-jackings have there been?

      Equally, as we’ve discussed here at TTAG, there’s something to said for allowing guns on planes. A view which the author failed to acknowledge. He is now aware. Let’s see if he gives that some attention, and how he frames that idea.

  8. Wow, NY Times a hard hitting news story that omits facts. In 1881 during the OK Corral gunfight you were still 7 times more likely getting shot in New York city. Liberal Bias never changes

  9. There was a time when, here is the shocker, people carried guns on planes and nothing happened.





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