Cabela's Affiliate Program Member

Thursday, April 28, 2016

CBS6 Talks With Dance's Sporting Goods About Open and Concealed Carry

Recently, an individual walked into Henrico Doctors Hospital and was arrested for carrying a firearm.  The hospital has a no firearms policy.  CBS 6 decided to do a story on where it is legal to carry concealed and open and decided to go to Dance's Sporting Goods in Colonial Heights for the report.


Dance's Sporting Goods is the preferred FFL for the VSSA Annual Members Raffle.

U.S. News Op/Ed: McAuliffe Wrong on Voting Rights

Peter Roff, U.S. News, World Report contributing editor and longtime observer of the Washington scene has a great piece on the U.S. News and World Report web site that does a great job of explaining how Governor Terry McAuliffe over stepped his bounds when restoring the voting rights of over 200,000 felons who have completed their sentence and probation:
There's another piece to this, though, that makes a challenge almost irresistible. McAuliffe's executive order, as The Washington Post put it, "applies to all felons who have completed their sentences and been released from supervised probation or parole," including those convicted in another state, and "restores the right to serve on a jury, run for office and become a notary public." Here we have several bridges that are simply too far for the average man or woman to stomach.

Just as all criminals are not the same, neither are all crimes. Under McAuliffe's new regime, a person who commits murder during the commission of another crime, child molesters, serial rapists and repeat offenders will receive the same treatment as those convicted of so-called victimless crimes like prostitution, those who have been jailed as part of the misguided war on drugs and white-collar criminals who have run afoul of the federal or state regulations that have criminal penalties attached. They will all have certain rights restored automatically without as much as a waiting period. Most people would not, one suspects, find this either just or fair. Whether we are willing as a society to forgive every aspect of every crime once a sentence has been completed is a complex moral question, one that has as many aspects to it as the governor's conspicuous and explicit statement in his order noting the restoration of Second Amendment rights are not up for discussion.

That a person who used a gun in the commission of a crime and went to prison for it should not have his gun rights restored is a persuasive argument. It is equally persuasive, however, that a person convicted of felony murder or a child molester is not as welcome back into society as someone who did time on a minor drug possession charge. The actions that landed them in prison are not equal from either a moral or legal standpoint; the consequences should not be equal either. Not that it is likely to happen, but do we really want a convicted felon sitting in judgment of the actions of another as a member of a jury? Can we really presume objectivity and a lack of bias would exist?

These are questions those who wish to serve in office in Virginia should take to the voters. As much as Gov. McAuliffe would like to pretend this is about righting a race-based wrong, it is really about our concept of justice. Some people, once they have served their time, are entitled to the presumption that their rights, all their rights, as a citizen should be restored. Some people simply are not. Saying so doesn't make it so.
Roff appeared on NRANews.com Cam and Company to discuss the article further.  He says that it far exceeds McAuliffe’s authority. The governor submitted no enabling legislation, nor created a distinction between those convicted of violent or nonviolent crimes. Roff says that McAuliffe is likely vying for a position in a future Clinton administration.
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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Volunteer to Work at the NRA-ILA Booth at the Farmville Heart of Virginia Festival

NRA-ILA is looking for volunteers to help at their booth at The 38th Annual Heart of Virginia Festival on Saturday, May 7th, in Downtown Historic Farmville.  The Festival runs from 8:30 AM-10 PM! Known as the "best small town festival in the world", the Heart of Virginia Festival embraces the spirit of Virginia through arts, crafts, culture and music.  Lauren Ledlow, an NRA-ILA Campaign Field Representative, is looking for volunteers to help at the NRA-ILA booth to distribute information, free NRA swag, and encouraging others to get involved locally. If you would like to help at this event RSVP on the NRA-ILA event page today!

Throughout this election, VSSA will be helping NRA-ILA to recruit volunteers for a variety of events and volunteer opportunities including gun shows, GOTV (Get Out The Vote) efforts such as door-to-door and phone banking, as well as other local activities.   All gun owners need to Stand and Fight against those attempting to strip us of our constitutional rights.  To learn more about how you can help, please contact Lauren Ledlow at Lauren@NRAILAFrontlines.com or (202) 906-9226.


CPRC on Why McAuliffe Can't Restore Felon Voting Rights Without Restoring Their Gun Rights

The Crime Prevention Research Center has this piece about Governor McAuliffe's Executive Order giving over 200,000 felons the right to vote in violation of the Virginia Constitution.  Republicans have responded to this action by saying McAuliffe's failure to make a distinction between violent crimes and less serious offenses will mean that murderers and rapists will be able to serve on juries, among other things.  CPRC sights the specific section of the Constitution McAuliffe violated - Article II, Section 1 of the Virginia Constitution:
No person who has been convicted of a felony shall be qualified to vote unless his civil rights have been restored by the Governor or other appropriate authority. 
Note the section references "civil rights" which includes gun rights. Most believe McAuliffe took the actions he did to help Hillary Clinton in the state in November since, according to the CPRC article, at least one piece of research shows felons tend to be Democrats. 
McAuliffe claims his action is to undo one of the last remnants of Reconstruction that was instituted to keep blacks from voting.  It should be noted that the earliest gun control was also instituted to keep blacks from owning guns. No one in the media asked McAuliffe about that however.  Sounds like a good question for him the next time he is on his monthly radio "Ask the Governor" on AM1140 WRVA.

John Lott: On Guns, Clinton Runs Both Right and Left

Dr. John Lott has a piece over at National Review Online, writing that Hillary Clinton is tailoring her message on guns to her audience. For instance:
On Wednesday, Hillary Clinton gave an address at Philadelphia’s St. Paul’s Baptist Church. With a nod to Pennsylvania’s high rate of gun ownership, she declared: “There is a Second Amendment, there are constitutional rights. We aren’t interested in taking away guns of lawful, responsible gun owners.”

But in New York City in the fall, she told donors: “The Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment, and I am going to make that case every chance that I get.” In Maryland last Thursday, Chelsea Clinton reiterated that point, promising that her mom would appoint to the Supreme Court justices who would overturn past decisions that struck down local and state gun-control measures. Given that the only laws that the Supreme Court has objected to are complete gun bans or laws that made it a crime to chamber a bullet, one wonders what “constitutional rights” Clinton was talking about preserving in Philadelphia.
While this may be the case, gun owners should under no illusions about where she really stands. She has said as recently as last week that Americans own too many guns and she intends to change that.  That's the real Hillary Clinton.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Gander Mountain One Day Ammo Sale

Gander Mountain sent the below coupon yesterday and asked that we share it with out members.  Buy one and get the second at 25% off.


Friday, April 22, 2016

Paul Bedard: Clinton Doubles Down on Anti-Gun Blitz

Earlier this week, Washington Examiner writer Paul Bedard had this piece on how Hillary Clinton is taking her gun control comments to a higher level in her campaign.  Up until now she has been focusing on "the gun lobby" and the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.  The article includes Clinton's new ad running in Connecticut that features the daughter of the principal killed during the Sandy Hook School shooting.  Yesterday, Bedard appeared on NRANews.com Cam and Company to discuss the article and how Clinton's message has evolved over the course of the campaign from simply bashing "the gun lobby" and calling for gun control to saying there are too many guns in America. It no longer matters if you are a hunter, a collector or only own one gun – she wants to reduce the number of guns in America.
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Originally aired on Cam & Co 04/21/16
Gun owners need to do all they can to insure that Hillary Clinton is not elected in November.  You can find out more about how you can connect with NRA-ILA efforts this campaign season by clicking here.  VSSA will be working with NRA's Campaign Field Representatives as the campaign progresses and will keep members informed of activities where you can participate.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

McAuliffe Vetoes Sustained

Yesterday really did not provide any surprises in the Reconvened Session of the 2016 General Assembly.  McAuliffe vetoed 32 bills, including five firearm related House Bills and one Senate bill.  One of the House vetoes and the companion Senate bill were not on yesterday's docket because they had been previously considered during the session when McAuliffe sent down an amendment in the nature of a substitute.  The substitute was rejected by both the House and Senate and so the veto could not be considered yesterday.

The vetoes that were failed to be overridden yesterday were:

HB 382 Firearms; control by state agencies, rights of employees.
HB 560 Brandishing a firearm; intent to induce fear, etc., penalty.
HB 1096 Firearms; regulation by state entities prohibited.
HB 1234 School security officers; carrying a firearm.

The vetoes that could not be considered were:
HB 766 Concealed handguns; carrying with a valid protective order.
SB 626 Carrying concealed handguns; protective orders.

Overriding the vetoes were always going to be difficult as it would require at least one Democrat in the House and 6 Democrats in the Senate to oppose the Democrat Governor.  In the House 67 votes are needed to override and in the State Senate 27 votes needed.  There are 66 Republicans in the House and 21 in the Senate.  The House fell one vote short on all of the bills in the House. 

Delegate Scott Lingamfelter shared this photo on Facebook yesterday illustrating how the Governor politicized his vetoes.

Wall Street Journal on the "Stigmatized" Olympians

Last Friday the Wall Street Journal had an article titled How Shooters Became the Most Stigmatized Olympians that is part profile of Olympic medalist Kim Rhode and part profile of the sport.  The article starts out talking about how shotgun shooter Kim Rhode is hoping to win a medal in her sixth Summer Games and becoming the first American ever to win a medal at six different Olympics.  Writer Kevin Helliker noted that few Americans probably know that fact however:
If Rhode stands relatively anonymously on the cusp of American Olympic history, that’s because her sport is less popular than swimming, and lots more controversial. She shoots a shotgun. At the London Games, which started days after a mass shooting at a movie theater in Colorado, Rhode and other Team USA shooters received anonymous online death threats, requiring additional security.

“Our sport has an unfortunate stigma attached to it,” says Rhode, a 36-year-old Southern Californian. Following December’s deadly shooting rampage in nearby San Bernardino, the media sought out comment from Rhode, who expressed sorrow for the victims and support for gun rights. Why should that crime have placed her in the spotlight? she asks: “You don’t hear them asking Nascar drivers to comment on crimes involving cars.”
Kelliker also writes that the very thing that may make this particular Olympic sport "controversial" also provides a base of support. He wrote that when Rhode visits outdoor retailer Cabela's, which is one of her sponsors, she is met by fans asking for her autograph.   Helliker also reported that shooters have won more gold medals for the U.S. than has every other type of Summer Olympics athlete except for swimmers and track-and-field members:
In the total medal count, shooters rank sixth in the U.S. behind boxing, wrestling, diving, swimming and track and field. In Rio, the sport’s governing body, USA Shooting, hopes to top its performance in London, where it won a bronze and three gold medals.
Not mentioned in the article but of note to fans of the shooting sports, are the expanded viewing options now available for the Olympics.  Gone are the days when your only option was watching it on broadcast TV.  Besides the numerous cable networks now owned by NBC where they can show more events, there is the mobile app where interested fans can watch sports not normally shown on television, on their phones or tablets as well as online on a PC.

The article also talked about some of the obstacles some shooters face in competing:
Also, some states have enacted assault-weapon restrictions that encompass a highly specialized 22-caliber Olympics sport pistol, making it impossible for competitors to train, let alone compete, in those states. Nathalia Granados, a former Colombian shooter who last year became an American citizen, now lives with her husband in New York, where she can’t own the pistol she needs to compete in the 25-meter event. Little wonder that she has failed to make the U.S. Olympic team headed to Rio, she says. “If a tennis player doesn’t have their racket, it wouldn’t be the same as training with their racket,” she says.
This reference reminded me that in 2000, California legislator Ron Perata invited a competitive shooter to move out of California when the state's "assault weapon" ban prevented her from owning the .22 pistol she needed for competition.

When talking about how sponsors for the shooters outside the shooting and outdoor community are hard to come by, the article captured the positive imagine these athletes have on the sport:
Outside the hunting, firearms and outdoors industries, sponsors of shooting are hard to come by, says Mitchell, the USA Shooting executive director. Executives of other companies will say, “‘I’ll be glad to cut you a check myself, but my firm, I can’t do that,’” says Mitchell.

Sports agent Patrick Quinn says, “My personal views on guns skewed to the negative” until a friend at Nike Inc. recommended that he represent Rhode. “Working with Kim and seeing what good people shooters are has made me look differently at the whole issue of guns,” says Quinn, a partner at Chicago Sports & Entertainment Partners. The problem, he says, “isn’t necessarily the guns.”

Quinn says it doesn’t bother him that Rhode is a hard sell to companies outside the shooting industry. “It’s a giant industry, and she’s a big fish in that pond,” he says.
Check out the entire article.

Document Dump Shows Justice Department Tried to "Spin" Away Fast and Furious Scandal

Last week, the Obama administration released documents related to the  Fast and Furious scandal after the president’s executive privilege claim from 2012 was struck down in federal court. Details are beginning to emerge, notably that the Department of Justice was more concerned about how to cover up the scandal, even pointing to the fact the NRA had asked Congress to investigate gave DOJ an opening to say this was just a political witch hunt.
“Chutzpah,” wrote Ron Weich, assistant attorney general for legislative affairs. “The NRA’s now-public involvement in this may be useful in convincing reporters that this is part of the overall effort to discredit ATF.”
As you will hear in the video below, emails included in the document dump indicate high level officials discussed how to get out in front of the information so as to control the narrative.  Townhall Editor and Fox News Contributor Katie Pavlich, who has written extensively on the subject appeared on NRANews.com earlier this week to discuss the document dump.  She said DOJ spent more than 10 months denying any knowledge of the operation, but in fact were deciding how to cover it up. The multi-year delay has been effective in running out the clock on the Obama administration.
video
Originally aired on Cam & Co 04/19/16.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

If You Are Going to Join the Race, Learn the Rules Before You Begin

I've steered clear of commenting on the GOP primary to this point because the focus of gun owners should be defeating Hillary Clinton in the general election and whomever the GOP nominates will be far better on our issue than Clinton.  However, if beating Hillary Clinton is our goal, gun owners should be concerned that one GOP candidate appears to not understand winning an election requires a ground game, and currently, he is getting beaten very badly at this part of the campaign.  I'm referring to Donald Trump and his persistent whining that convention delegates are being stolen from him.  For most, this is probably a bit too "inside baseball" but it does in a round about way pertain to our issue and it bears pointing out that Trump either doesn't understand or care what he has to do to win an election, as pointed out very well by the Wall Street Journal:
The Trump campaign’s delegate-counting blunders show the downside of running a one-man show from a Boeing 757. Mr. Trump famously disdained the trappings of conventional campaigns, banking on mass rallies and free media. That has worked well in primaries, especially open primaries when Democrats and independents can vote for GOP candidates.

But Mr. Trump hasn’t taken the time to understand how the GOP’s state parties work, and he’s now paying the price as delegates are chosen. The New Yorker has admitted his mistake by hiring Paul Manafort, a GOP Beltway fixer, to focus on delegate selection and maybe manage the campaign. It’s hard to know who’s doing what in the Trump Circus with all the leaks about in-fighting since his loss in Wisconsin.
The fact is, whether it is a primary or caucus state, actual delegates to the nominating convention are elected at local and congressional district conventions (one was held last weekend in Virginia with more to follow).  Seventeen (out of a total of 42) of the delegates elected are bound to Mr. Trump on the first ballot in Cleveland but if he fails to get the required majority of 1237 delegates on the first ballot, delegates are free to vote for the candidate of their choice.  That is why Senator Ted Cruz has people in Virginia and every other state working to get people elected to the national convention that will vote for him on later ballots (it's possible that those 17 bound to Trump will be people who actually support Senator Cruz).  That has always been the way the process has worked and if Trump had done his homework, he would have known this.

For gun owners, we should be very concerned that this one man free media circus Mr. Trump has run will not work so well in a general election when Clinton will have people on the ground to help turn our her voters.  The NRA has already deployed campaign field representatives in areas of Virginia.  But to win the election, the nominee will have to be someone who can reach out to people and turn out his voters.  So far, Mr. Trump has not shown he is capable or willing to do that.

NPR Asked "Do Pistols Make You Safer?"

Earlier this week, National Public Radio (NPR) had this report on Morning Addition that asks the question "Do Pistols Make You Safer?"  He starts out admitting being puzzled why so many people (13 million by his estimate) choose to arm themselves when statistics show the nation's crime rate has had dramatic decreases in the last 20 years.  Maybe the reporter should look at this recent Gallup Poll to understand this question.

The reporter mostly avoids making judgements and lets his interviews be the real story.  He spoke with a gun show organizer, A Girl and a Gun Executive Director Robyn Sandoval, and three people who used a firearm, one who likely prevented being a victim of a gun shot, one who used a firearm against individuals who attempted to rob her, and one who made the poor decision to intervene in a property crime that was not life threatening.  Darrell Standberry, had to use his firearm in self-defense and told the reporter how that decision affected his life:
"I was parked at the pump right in front of the gas station. I exited my vehicle and before I could even get to the door of the gas station, the young man was already sitting in the driver's seat of my vehicle," says Standberry, who just earned a degree in green energy technology. He'd left his Yukon XL running with the key in the ignition.

He says he told the young man to get out of his car. The young man told him to step back. That's when Standberry says he saw the carjacker reach toward his pocket.

Standberry unholstered his Sig Sauer .45, reached through the passenger-side window, and fired one shot. He hit the carjacker in the torso. Gravely wounded, the carjacker drove away, crashed into a tree and died. Police found a pistol in his pocket.

"It changed a lot in my life," he says. "Matter of fact, in my English class, I just did a report on it. I named it, 'The incident that changed my life forever.' "

Standberry went to counseling. He became fearful of gas stations. And he carried the burden of killing a 19-year-old.

"You know why? Because my son was 19 at the same time. It really bothered me that I had to take a 19-year-old's life. His life was just beginning. But he was into the wrong things. To this day, I still ask God for forgiveness," he says.
The person who intervened in the property crime ended up getting probation for reckless discharge of a firearm.  I've heard folks like Tom Gresham say numerous times that choosing to carry a firearm is not a decision to be taken lightly, it may be necessary to use it some it someday and with that comes consequences.  A class required for a concealed carry permit in most cases is not real training as this Detroit firearms instructor points out to the reporter:
"One of my concerns about the [Michigan] state requirements for getting a CPL is they don't really include the tactics and the strategy that one will need to win or prevail in an actual gun situation," Cortis says. "A hostile attack by a violent criminal is a fight."
The reporter closes with a very strong endorsement from the Detroit Chief of Police, James Craig, who has urged residents to get a concealed carry permit.  When asked isn't he worried about so many people having guns?
"What concerns me, more than anything else, is guns in the hands of criminals, guns in the hands of terror suspects. That's what keeps me up at night. Not armed citizens," Craig says.
While there are one or two things that our side of the issue could find fault with in the article, overall, it is not bad considering the source.

Gun Control Proponent Adam Winkler Says Banning Standard Capacity Magazines is a Bad Idea

It has been said that once a gun control proposal is passed in California it is only a few short years before it makes it's way to the east coast.  That is one reason we should all be watching very closely the proposal of California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom to require background checks for ammunition and to ban standard capacity magazines that have previously been grandfathered under previous laws.  It is quite telling how useless this proposal is in preventing crime when gun control proponent Adam Winkler takes to the LA Times to write how the magazine ban is a bad idea (he is fine with the background checks for ammunition however).  Winkler says the proposal focuses on mass shootings, which are rare and would do nothing to prevent the "daily death toll from guns."  He also said passing such a law would create less respect for laws in general.
Even the slight benefit promised by a ban on large magazines — forcing mass shooters to delay momentarily — is outweighed by the unfortunate consequences of passing a law that normally law-abiding people won't obey. If past experience is any guide, the magazine ban is just such a law. In 2013 Sunnyvale banned high-capacity magazines and, after a grace period for gun owners, police reported that not a single person had turned in a magazine. Los Angeles and San Francisco enacted similar laws and few, if any, gun owners have disposed of their magazines.

As more gun laws that gun owners believe are wrong or foolish have been adopted, noncompliance has become a significant problem. When California required registration of assault weapons in 1990, only about 7,000 of the estimated 300,000 assault weapons then in the state were registered. In New York, which required registration of assault weapons in 2013, the compliance rate is about 5%. Connecticut has also seen a remarkably low rate of compliance with its law mandating registration of large magazines.

Why is compliance with such laws so low? Some people have an ideological opposition to any gun control law. Yet when 95% of gun owners don't comply with a law, it's not just the die-hards objecting. Legal theorists argue that people are more likely to comply with laws they view as morally or socially just. To a person whose gun came standard with one of these magazines and who has owned it for years without incident, the idea that these devices are inherently dangerous does not resonate.
Winkler, who is a professor at the UCLA School of Law, is a realistic gun control advocate.
Like alcohol, drugs and file-sharing, guns — including the ones with large magazines — are here to stay. Gun policy is going to be more effective when we stop fighting against that simple fact.
Don't hold your breath for other gun control advocates to get that fact.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

McAuliffe Vetoes Bill Clarifying Law on Brandishing a Firearm

NBC 4 in Washington reports that Governor McAuliffe has vetoed HB 560, a bill that clarifies the law on brandishing a firearm.  As passed, in order to receive a conviction, prosecutors would have to prove that an individual not only brandished a weapon, but also knew or should have known that his or her conduct induced fear in the mind of another person.  McAuliffe thanks that is a bridge too far:
Making the change requested in this bill would create unintended consequences for prosecutors and law enforcement officers attempting to secure convictions for violators of this law,” said McAuliffe in another veto statement for House Bill 560.

This proposed modification would unnecessarily burden our public safety officials and potentially create a defense for individuals who recklessly handle firearms," he said.
That's four separate vetoes of pro-gun bills.  Clearly McAuliffe is trying to work himself back into the good graces of the gun ban lobby.