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From reader G in Seattle:

Christine Clarridge at documents a state-funded program designed to “educate convicted felons and career criminals about the serious legal penalties they face if they are caught violating the firearms prohibition upon their release.” Interesting that there’s public money for the Department of Corrections to educate convicted felons that they’ve lost their firearms privileges, yet at the same time, how often do you hear about community sponsored programs doing the opposite: helping to educate regular citizens about their right to own and carry a gun? Or about firearm training and safety? Yeah, I know there are lots of private gun clubs and other organizations that provide training and classes, but I wonder if that has created a gun culture where access can be limited to only certain folks. Food for thought.


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  1. Wouldn’t it be more effective in terms of both cost and result if this was done in school instead of after prison?

  2. Or maybe they could do this while they are STILL in prison. Call me crazy but it seems much cheaper and easier to inform them prior to sending them on their way to the real world.

  3. It would be better if states or local governments would train citizens to own and use firearms, and this was more or less how the militias operated earlier in American history. (Funny how that word “militia” has been turned into a dirty word in the last couple of decades; you’d almost think it was intentional.)

    On the other hand, there’s something to be said for things growing from the ground up. People usually take a more personal stake when they do. Plus, lots of us might not take to kindly to having to report for training to the local detachment one Saturday every month. We Americans like things to be our idea.

  4. They need a program for that? I think a postcard would do just fine.

    Dear Convicted Felon:

    You lost your gun rights. If we catch you with a gun, any gun, ever, you’re going back to the joint for a long time.

    Have a nice day.

  5. I’m assuming these instructions don’t include how you could possibly restore your gun rights. And just wondering but why are their rights taken away? If you are convicted of libel or slander, do we take away your 1st amendment rights? If youre convicted of mugging someone, do we take away your 3rd amendment rights? If youre convicted of torturing someone, do we take away your 8th amendment rights?

  6. A convicted felon, who has not had his rights restored by proving his rehabilitation, should run at the sight of a gun. Not only in fear of being shot, but because a court may somehow construe he was “in possession” of that weapon, and impose severe penalties.

  7. Speaking of state-funded programs… We should be able to earmark funds for a purpose. How much can an BATF NFA examiner make, really? I’m pretty sure we could fund the salaries of a couple more quite easily, if we could fund them directly. I’d pitch in a few bucks if it would reduce my wait time by a significant amount.

    • I’d rather appropriate my funds towards dissolving the unconstitutional agency, to be perfectly frank.

      • Or if it’s going to stick around, let it do something useful, like building bars, smoking lounges, and shooting ranges.

  8. Educating citizens about their right to bear arms might encourage a significant number to take responsibility for their safety, gain confidence, and become more vigilant. And you wonder why the government wouldn’t want that? Modern governmental survival depends on people being stupid, scared sheep who suckle the teet of the nanny state.

  9. In the case of violent offenders, how about we keep them behind bars until we can trust them to behave? That way, there shouldn’t be a problem with restoration of rights. Of course, many of them wouldn’t ever see the free light of day again, but that bothers me not at all.

    • Have you ever been in jail before, actual jail, not lockup at your local precinct? Have you ever been thru a criminal trial and saw first hand what the US justice system is like? If not you might want to get off your high horse, because you could end up there some day, look at George Zimmerman.

      I’m willing to bet your the same type of person who loves to bitch about taxes, but doesnt take in to account how much it costs to incarcerate someone.

      Thank you drug war:

      • Matt, lighten up on Greg, will ya. He’s on your side. He’s every bit as biased and closed minded as the rest of you who comment here.

        I loved you reverential mention of Zimmerman too. I guess it’s official now. If he goes down he’s the official martyr.

      • Zimmerman has yet to be convicted. That case is still way up in the air. I actually don’t have too much to say about taxes, though I do wish that my tax dollars would be spent wisely. In that regard, I find much about our current drug policy to be stupid. If you wish to poison yourself and you’re not harming me and not screwing up your children, I have no problem with that.

    • Washington doesn’t indefinitely imprison all violent offenders, but our state does currently have a laws that allow for the involuntary committal of level 3 sex offenders who have been deemed by evaluation to be at a high-risk to re-offend if they are released back into the community after finishing their sentence. They’re literally kept on an island:

      I have mixed feelings about this. As a citizen, I don’t think any of us wants to be punished beyond the sentence/consequence for a crime. As a father and someone who works with students however, I must admit that I’d do whatever it takes to keep kids safe – especially from predatory sex offenders who have no moral objection to raping, abusing, and killing children.

      • I don’t mean indefinite detention. Violent offenses should carry much longer sentences. And to Matt, I’m not talking about detaining people before conviction.

        • It still doesn’t really matter, most people here seem to think Zimmerman will be convicted, regardless of what actually happened. I suppose none of us truly know what happened that night, and there is always the chance he could walk, but as I said, try going thru a criminal (or even civil) trial, especially without an attorney or with a public defender, and see if you consider it to be fair. If you do have an attorney, at best you’ll walk out the courtroom bankrupt unless you are very wealthy or find a sympathetic attorney willing to work pro bono.

  10. You know if convicts intend to hurt someone with a gun after they are out of prison, they’ll do it anyway. It only disarms the convicts dedicated to being law abiding.

  11. Maybe they should be responsible for their actions like the rest of us? They are already informed about which rights they no longer have upon release.

    Or maybe instead of Washington whining for more money for teachers every year (I assume, it’s that way across the country) they abolish this silly program and use that to help the budget?

    • Because public school teachers are glorified baby sitters and dont need to be paid any more than they all ready are.

      • Have a bad experience in the public school system, matt?

        If public school teachers got paid like “babysitters” it’d break the state budget.

        Do you pay babysitters $1.40 to watch your kid for one hour? Because with a classroom of about 30 kids, that’s how much public school teachers are “overpaid”…

        • If school teachers are making $42 per hour ($1.40 * 30), then yes they are vastly over paid.

        • You can also try to negotiate discounts with a baby sitter if you hire them for longer than a hour, and can guarantee 40 hours a week. Assuming that teacher is working 40 hours per week, all year long, that is aprox $80,000 per year. What fukcing babysitter makes that much money?

        • plus a pension, a union, and benefits on top of $80k per year? Are you serious that they are underpaid?

        • they are welfare queens extraordinaire.

          And yes I had a bad experience with the public school system, my senior high school english project was to write a 4 page report on the book Johnny Tremain, which on the back said for grades 4 and up. I learned more at school from the support staff when I worked in the IT department as a student employee than I ever did from a teacher.

        • Having taught in public schools now and then, I can tell you that teachers are underpaid for the work that they do. Some administrators, on the other hand, should be doing community service for their lack of work. Some of the higher ups and school board members should be joining the crooks in prison for the nonsense that they foist upon the system. Some legislators and the Department of Education need to be run out of the country for their deeds.

  12. As a general rule, most felons can get their gun rights restored one time. It’s not available for sex crimes or violent crimes, and the felon has to pay their fines and go either 5 years or 10 years in the community without a criminal conviction first.

    I’ve done this for clients, and the paperwork is really quite simple. The problem is that very few convicted felons manage to pay their fines and stay out of trouble for long enough to meet the requirements. When a one-time felon does pass muster, a judge will sign the order in a heartbeat.

  13. You’re bitching and moaning because they’re trying to keep guns out of the hands of criminals? Really? Could you be any more counter-productive to your own movement?


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