President Trump and Vice President Pence to speak at the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum

FAIRFAX, Va.— President Donald Trump will address NRA members at the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) Leadership Forum on Friday, April 26, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. This is the third consecutive year that President Trump will deliver the keynote address at the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. 

“Donald Trump is the most enthusiastic supporter of the Second Amendment to occupy the Oval Office in our lifetimes. It is truly an honor to have President Trump address NRA members for the fifth consecutive year,” said Chris Cox, NRA-ILA Executive Director. “President Trump’s Supreme Court appointments ensure that the Second Amendment will be respected for generations to come.  Our members are excited to hear him speak and thank him for his support for our Right to Keep and Bear Arms.”

WHAT:
NRA-ILA Leadership Forum

WHO:
President Donald Trump
Keynote Speaker

WHERE:
Indiana Convention Center—Lucas Oil Stadium
100 South Capitol Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46255

WHEN:
Friday, April 26, 2019
11:00 – 4:00 p.m.

MEDIA CREDENTIALS:
To obtain media credentials please click HERE.
TICKETS:
For attendees, purchase your tickets today at bit.ly/NRAILALeadershipForum!

NRAAM media credentials will not be accepted for the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. Separate media credentials are required for NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. 

Why Even the Nonviolent Own Guns

Gun rights are pretty much common knowledge. A lot of Americans have a handgun in their possession and they’re ready to use it if needed. However, there are many people who are against guns, or they are just not violent individuals in particular. In times when mass shootings have become usual occurrences on the news, it only makes sense that more and more people would turn their backs on weapons.

Even so, there are many citizens who don’t give up on executing their right to wield a gun. People who are big opposers of violence are in the same boat. But why is that? Here we take a look at some reasons why even nonviolent people have a handgun in their household.

Guns Boost Confidence

The aftermath of mass shootings and the increase in criminal activities overall are causing people to feel unsafe wherever they go. Usually, people put themselves in a victim’s shoes and try to think about what they’d do if they were there. They begin to worry about their safety, as well as the safety of their loved ones to the point that they become paranoid and obsessive. While nobody should take their safety for granted, too much of these thoughts can be detrimental to one’s mental state.

People are so afraid because they don’t see any way to protect themselves in case they would be involved in such a dangerous situation. This is where guns come into play. Obviously, these are tools that can injure someone just at the pull of a trigger. So, they can make any holder feel significantly safer than they would without a gun.

Therefore, even if they are against violence and don’t want to use guns, they can simply buy one to feel better and safer in a world where danger can happen anytime.

Looking Cool

There are many types of people, and among those who just want to live normally, there are those who love attention and being praised. Even those who are against violence might feel this way at one point. That’s why they could end up spending money on a weapon.

Yes, there are people who love the idea of being cool and intimidating, so flaunting a handgun around is what they settle for. Just like some people love bragging about their money/cars/possessions, there are Americans who take pride in showing off their gun collection. Being against violence doesn’t stop them from having that feeling of empowerment.

Protection Can Be Increased through Guns

A thief coming into your home during the night is a scary scenario that you’ve probably only seen in movies so far. Still, it’s enough to send shivers down anyone’s spine. In such a situation, the right thing to do is calling the police, but what would one do until the police arrive? The time that the authorities take to rush to the scene may be just enough for the perpetrator to finish their act and even end up injuring someone.

With a gun, though, someone who’s in danger can save some time until police arrive. The trigger doesn’t have to be pulled – just threatening the criminal might be enough to make him keep the distance. A woman holding a handgun in her small lady hands, for example, doesn’t automatically make her violent. It just means that she values her safety, as well as the family’s safety too much and wants to protect it.

That’s why the majority of gun owners declare that guns make them feel much safer, and it’s usually the main reason why Americans choose to own a weapon.

Hunting

Hunting is one interesting and unconventional hobby. Although hunting requires the use of a gun to kill an animal, that doesn’t mean the one handling the weapon is a violent person. Despite people’s thoughts, it is an activity that can be done in order to save someone’s farming livelihood. In other words, it might have to be done as a last resort, and the one pulling the trigger could be a very nice and considerate person.

At the same time, hunting can be done for food – either for the hunter himself or his family.

Shooting Can Improve the Mental State

Guns can be used for something else besides protection and hunting. Improving mental health is something that can be done through target shooting, so this might be another reason why a nonviolent person could wield a gun.

Basically, shooting takes a particular amount of concentration in order to help the shooter focus on hitting the target. The one holding the weapon has to be careful at what’s in front of him/her, as well as what’s around so that he/she doesn’t do any wrong move. As a result, the respective person will forget about stress and any other problems and will focus on precision and carefully holding the weapon.

In addition, shooting can help release a lot of stress that’s put on a human’s shoulders. Instead of taking their feelings out through less rational methods, they can simply engage in target shooting and take all of their negative emotions out.

Simply put, shooting can serve as a different form of meditation. It’s a way to cleanse your mind of all the negative thoughts and polish it. The benefit of meditation is that it makes the mind stronger and helps with concentration. In fact, studies have proven how meditation plays a huge role in the performance of sports professionals’. Therefore, meditation doesn’t have to be just about sitting and contemplating life – it can also be done through target shooting.

Final Thoughts

Some individuals might be against violence, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t want to protect themselves or their loved ones against potential dangers. Sometimes, guns are the only things that can save them from a threat, even if they don’t end up pulling the trigger. Being a gun owner might often be misunderstood, but personal safety and mental health are more important than other people’s opinions.

Response from Rep. Darren Soto (D-FL) on Gun Control/Red Flag Laws

I wrote to U.S. Representative Darren Soto (D- FL) in protest to his support for national Red Flag Laws like those in Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety (Gun Control) law which allows for Risk Protection Orders. Be aware that Soto is a big gun control advocate including banning of all AR-15 style rifles which he falsely claims are “assault rifles” and also all high capacity magazines over 10 round capacity.

His letter below is a total false smokescreen when he says,

“Please know, this is not an effort to take guns away from lawful gun owners or to undermine the Second Amendment – it is a common-sense solution that would ensure the current law is fully implemented without loopholes in order to keep our communities safe.”

This means he supports the totally unconstitutional Risk Assessment Orders allowing seizures of firearms, ammo, permits without Due Process.

LETTER FROM REPRESENTATIVE SOTO

Dear Royal,

Thank you for contacting me to share your concerns regarding gun-related legislation. Hearing from you helps me better represent Florida’s Ninth Congressional District.

I am sure that, like me, the alarming number of violent, gun-related tragedies has left you grief-stricken for the innocent children, teachers, first responders, and families who fell victim to these acts. We have a responsibility to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous individuals. I strongly believe we must work to protect all Americans – men, women, and children – from gun violence.

An overwhelming majority of gun owners are law-abiding citizens, but it can be too easy for criminals and others that cannot pass background checks to obtain firearms. Please know, this is not an effort to take guns away from lawful gun owners or to undermine the Second Amendment – it is a common-sense solution that would ensure the current law is fully implemented without loopholes in order to keep our communities safe.

I also believe we need to improve mental health services. It is critical that we work to ensure that mentally ill individuals are not further stigmatized or assumed to be universally dangerous and violent. At the same time, it’s also important that we ensure that all Americans have access to quality mental health care in their communities. Mental illness is not the cause of most crimes, but we may be able to prevent some future tragedies by providing better care and services.

Should any related bills make it to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote, I will keep your views in mind. Thank you for taking the time to share your views with me, I hope you continue to do so in the future.
Sincerely,

Darren Soto
Member of Congress

RELATED ARTICLE: How America’s Gun Culture Cultivates Civic Virtue

VIDEO: Our Reason to Exist Is to Protect the Second Amendment

“Our principal purpose of existence is to protect the Second Amendment.” —LtCol Oliver North

RELATED VIDEOS:

Guy Relford: Pittsburgh Passes Sweeping, Illegal Gun Laws

Del Seymour: Unexpected Plans of Drug Addiction

Burglar’s Criminality Stopped at the Point of a Gun

EDITORS NOTE: This NRA-ILA video is republished with permission.

Breaking News: President Trump to speak at NRA-ILA Leadership Forum in Indianapolis

FAIRFAX, Va.— President Donald Trump will address NRA members at the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) Leadership Forum on Friday, April 26, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. This is the third consecutive year that President Trump will deliver the keynote address at the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. 

“Donald Trump is the most enthusiastic supporter of the Second Amendment to occupy the Oval Office in our lifetimes. It is truly an honor to have President Trump address NRA members for the fifth consecutive year,” said Chris Cox, NRA-ILA Executive Director. “President Trump’s Supreme Court appointments ensure that the Second Amendment will be respected for generations to come.  Our members are excited to hear him speak and thank him for his support for our Right to Keep and Bear Arms.”

WHAT:
NRA-ILA Leadership Forum

WHO:
President Donald Trump
Keynote Speaker

WHERE:
Indiana Convention Center—Lucas Oil Stadium
100 South Capitol Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46255

WHEN:
Friday, April 26, 2019
11:00 – 4:00 p.m.

MEDIA CREDENTIALS:
To obtain media credentials please click HERE.
TICKETS:
For attendees, purchase your tickets today at bit.ly/NRAILALeadershipForum!

NRAAM media credentials will not be accepted for the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. Separate media credentials are required for NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. 

VIDEO: Beto Gives His Unwanted and Unnecessary Permission for AR-15 Ownership

“Dude, I don’t need your permission for that. I have a lot of AR-15s. And do you know why I have a lot of AR-15s? Because I’m a grown-ass woman, and I can.” —Dana Loesch

RELATED ARTICLES:

The Left Will Pack the Court To Destroy the Second

Beto’s Stance on AR-15s Is Incoherent and Inconsistent

Beto: “AR-15s Will Blow an Orange-Sized Hole Into Their Victims”

13 Times in February Armed Citizens Intervened to Stop Crimes

The fundamental right to keep and bear arms is a vital tool safeguarding individual liberty.


Last month, we documented some extraordinary examples from January of armed citizens relying on their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves and others.

We pointed out that these were average, everyday Americans who were just going about their lives. They did not go looking for evil but were nonetheless prepared to deal with the evil that found them.

February has produced even more evidence that the fundamental right to keep and bear arms is not an anachronism that no longer deserves constitutional protection, but a vital tool safeguarding individual liberty.

Studies routinely indicate that every year, Americans use their firearms in defense of themselves or others between 500,000 and 2 million times. Very few of these defensive gun uses receive national publicity—if they receive publicity at all.

Below, we’ve highlighted just a handful of the many times during the month of February that law-abiding Americans demonstrated the importance of the Second Amendment.

  • Feb. 2: A restaurant owner in Akron, Ohio, scared off a masked man who attempted to rob him with a knife. The man fled, and police believe he successfully robbed a different restaurant just hours later.
  • Feb. 5: A Nashville, Tennessee, woman was attacked from behind by a would-be purse thief, who proceeded to repeatedly slam the woman’s head into a wall when she resisted him. The woman’s husband heard her cries for help and came to her defense, firing his gun at the thief and causing him to flee.
  • Feb. 9: When three armed men attempted to rob a Little Caesars restaurant in North Fort Myers, Florida, a patron inside pulled his own firearm to defend other customers. One suspect was shot and the other two fled.
  • Feb. 12: A homeowner in Jackson County, Georgia, heard someone trying to break into her house through a window. She found a man standing outside and warned him not to come into the house. Nevertheless, the man broke the glass window, so the armed homeowner shot him.
  • Feb. 13: Sullivan County, Tennessee, Sheriff Jeff Cassidy praised the actions of a concealed carry permit holder who ended a deadly domestic violence incident at a dentist’s office. The armed citizen shot and detained an active shooter who killed his wife and may have planned to harm others in the office.
  • Feb. 14: An Evans, Georgia, mother shot and killed her boyfriend after he began violently assaulting the woman’s 15-year-old son during an argument.
  • Feb. 16: Two masked assailants attempted to rob 35-year-old Antonio Santiago in Allentown, Pennsylvania, pepper spraying his face and “pistol whipping” him with a BB gun that appeared to be real. In an act of self-defense, Santiago grabbed his own handgun and fired at his attackers, killing one of them. Two other suspects fled, but were eventually arrested and tied to two other recent crimes in the area.
  • Feb17: An armed good Samaritan in Daytona Beach, Florida, intervened and fired a shot to stop a knife-wielding man, who had already stabbed someone, from stabbing other people outside a convenience store.
  • Feb. 20: A 79-year-old Commerce, Georgia, homeowner called 911 to report a burglary in progress after she heard someone breaking into her home. The burglar ignored her threats and came in through an upstairs window before police could arrive. The homeowner shot at the burglar, who was so scared that he hid in a closet until the police arrived.
  • Feb. 24: Three armed men ambushed a Houston, Texas, couple who were walking out of their apartment complex, forcing them back inside to rob them. The boyfriend retrieved his own firearm from within the apartment and exchanged fire with the three men, injuring one of them.
  • Feb. 26: The Mobile County, Alabama, Sheriff’s Office posted a Facebook video showing an armed local homeowner’s recent encounter with two would-be burglars. The burglars attempted to enter the occupied home in broad daylight, and were only deterred when the homeowner fired her handgun at them.
  • Feb. 27: A group of teenage thieves entered a pawn shop in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and tried to flee with two guns they grabbed from behind the counter. Armed store clerks chased the teens and held them at gunpoint until the police could arrive, preventing the future unlawful use of those stolen firearms. Police believe these teens are responsible for other gun thefts and may be able to take other illegally possessed guns off the streets as a result of these clerks’ actions.
  • Feb. 28: Two men helped rescue a woman from a would-be kidnapper in Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, after seeing her struggle to escape on the side of the road. After the two men stopped their car, one of them pulled out his handgun, prompting the suspect to flee. He was later apprehended and confessed to kidnapping the woman.

These individuals were all law-abiding citizens whose lives and livelihoods depended upon their ability to exercise their natural right of self-defense. Without a robustly protected right to keep and bear arms, the Americans in the cases above would have been left to the mercy of criminals who don’t much care for the rights of others.

Despite this reality, gun control activists and lawmakers have spent the last month pushing legislation that would severely hamper the ability of law-abiding Americans to defend themselves and others.

They have proposed effectively stripping young adults of their Second Amendment rights by raising the legal age for firearm purchases. Apparently, while law-abiding 18- to 20-year-olds are mature enough to vote, serve on juries, and be drafted into the military, they can’t be trusted to legally purchase a handgun with which to defend themselves and their families.

The bill for universal background checks, which recently passed through the House of Representatives, would compound this problem by depriving young adults of the ability to receive firearms via private transfers.

Gun control advocates have introduced bills that would limit magazine capacity for privately-owned firearms and that would prohibit future civilian purchases of semi-automatic rifles that serve as some of the most effective guns for home defense.

The irony is that, while civilians would be stripped of the right to immediately defend their lives and property with these guns, the law enforcement officers who respond—perhaps too late—to calls for help overwhelmingly choose those same firearms precisely because they are the most effective.

All of these proposals would significantly burden the exercise of a constitutional right that, as the data from February shows, is commonly used by average Americans to enforce their inalienable rights to life, liberty, and property.

We don’t make law-abiding citizens safer by disarming them or making them less capable of fighting back against criminals. We only make them easier targets.

COLUMN BY

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Signal column is republished with permission.

Activist Court Turns the Law Designed to Protect the Firearm Industry from Frivolous Lawsuits on its Head

On Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court created a dangerous new exception to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), a strong safeguard for our right to keep and bear arms.

Repealing or judicially nullifying the PLCAA has been a priority for the gun ban lobby ever since the law was enacted in 2005. Thursday’s decision, while not binding beyond Connecticut, provides a possible roadmap for those hoping to circumvent the PLCAA’s protections against frivolous and untested legal claims against the firearm industry.

The case is Soto v. Bushmaster.

The PLCAA was enacted to protect the firearms industry against a highly-orchestrated and coordinated series of lawsuits that sought to either bankrupt the industry or force it to “voluntarily” adopt the sorts of measures gun control activists had unsuccessfully sought to impose by legislation.

While anti-gunners like to portray the PLCAA as providing “extraordinary” or “unparalleled” legal protection to gun makers and sellers, in reality it simply ensures that activist courts cannot create a firearm-specific exemption to well established principles of law. The most important of these is, as the Connecticut Supreme Court put it, “the general rule that an individual cannot be held liable for the conduct of others.”

Gun control activists, however, have long sought to hold firearm manufacturers and sellers accountable for the crimes of third-parties who obtain and illegally use the guns they sell. The theory would be similar to the victim of a drunk driver suing the manufacturer or dealer of the vehicle the driver happened to be operating at time.

This theory is unsurprisingly almost always a legal loser, absent unusual circumstances demonstrating a link between the merchant and the criminal or specific warning signs the merchant was aware of but chose to ignore when selling the gun to the person who later misused it.

Nevertheless, winning the cases was never really the point. The point was instead to get enough litigants in different jurisdictions to gang up on the manufacturers so that they would go out of business or give up defending the lawsuits before the cases ever got before a jury.

The PLCAA put an end to this, while still allowing for liability for those who knowingly engage in bad conduct. For example, it contains exceptions for marketing a defective product, entrusting a firearm or ammunition to someone unfit to have it, or breaking a law “applicable to the sale or marketing of the [firearm or ammunition],” and thereby causing the plaintiff’s injuries.

The plaintiffs in Soto v. Bushmaster are survivors and representatives of those killed in the terrible murders at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. in 2012.

They advanced a variety of legal theories as to why the PLCAA did not apply to their claims.

A trial judge dismissed all of these claims in an October 2016 ruling, which we reported on at the time.

The plaintiffs then appealed to the Connecticut Supreme Court, which in a closely divided 4 to 3 ruling, found a pathway for the case to proceed.

The high court’s majority opinion focused on the exception for the violation of laws “applicable to the sale or marketing of the [firearm or ammunition]” that result in the plaintiff’s injuries.

In so doing, it had to resolve the question of whether that exception applies only to gun specific laws (like the ones used as examples in the act itself) or whether it could apply to any law that might conceivably be invoked against the manufacture or sale of a firearm or ammunition.

The court chose the broadest reading of that language, finding that it applied to any law used to bring a case against a firearm manufacturer or seller, whether or not that law was enacted with firearms in mind or even whether or not it had previously been used in the context of a firearm related claim.

The law the plaintiffs invoked was the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA), which prohibits any person from “engag[ing] in unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce.”

The plaintiffs advanced two theories as to how this applied to the defendants’ behavior.

First, they asserted that any sale of an AR-15 to the civilian population was necessarily a fraudulent commercial practice, because (so they claimed) such firearms have no legitimate civilian use.

Never mind the fact that the AR-15 is, by all accounts, the most popular centerfire rifle in America, that it is owned by millions of law-abiding people who use it for every legitimate purpose for which a gun can be used.

It is also notable with respect to this claim that Congress enacted the PLCAA the year after it allowed the Clinton Gun Ban to expire in 2004. Congress was well aware that gun control advocates hate AR-15s and similar guns and want them permanently banned, but it did not exempt them from the PLCAA’s protection. Indeed, an important principle underlying the PLCAA is that the legislatures get to determine how to regulate firearms, not the courts.

The Connecticut Supreme Court, however, did not decide whether the sales and marketing of AR-15s to the general public is inherently fraudulent, finding only that the statute of limitations had expired on that particular claim. But the court at least left the door open for future such claims in other cases.

The second CUTPA theory the plaintiffs advanced was the outrageous accusation that Bushmaster intentionally marketed its version of the AR-15 to school shooters and other violent criminals and that the perpetrator of the Newtown crimes choose to use that gun at least in part because of this.

The supposed evidence the plaintiffs used for this claim was Remington ad copy that used militaristic images and language, appeals to patriotism, references to the gun’s use and proofing in combat.

These are, of course, the same advertising techniques used to sell any number of other lawful products to law-abiding people, from pants, to sunglasses, to boots, to vehicles.  The fact that a customer might appreciate knowing that an item – especially one for use in protecting his or her home and loved ones – performed well under demanding circumstances is hardly proof that it is purposely being marketed to deranged killers.

But that premise was enough for the Connecticut Supreme Court to require the defendants in the case to spend millions of dollars defending themselves from what is certain to be prolonged and costly litigation that publicly portrays the companies and their products in the most negative ways possible.

This was so, even though the majority acknowledged CUTPA had never been used to bring a firearm-related case in Connecticut and indeed had never even been applied to a personal injury case.

And if there was any remaining doubt about where the majority stood on the issue of AR-15s, they also included a totally unnecessary commentary suggesting the limits of the Second Amendment, which wasn’t even raised as an issue in the case. In particular, the court opined, “It is not at all clear … the second amendment’s protections even extend to the types of … rifles at issue in the present case.”

To their credit, three judges dissented from the majority opinion as it applied to the ability to use CUTPA to circumvent the PLCAA, even as they indicated their own disagreement with the choices Congress made with the Act.  “It is not the province of this court, under the guise of statutory interpretation, to legislate a particular policy, even if it were to agree that it is a better policy than the one endorsed by the legislature as reflected in its statutory language,” the Chief Judge wrote in his dissent.

With the viability of the PLCAA now in jeopardy, it is likely the defendants will appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. Whether any intervention comes quickly enough to save the gun industry from a renewed campaign of frivolous litigation remains to be seen.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Governor Bevin Signs NRA-backed Constitutional Carry

Yesterday’s Scandal, Today’s Mandate: Anti-gunner Embraces Operation Choke Point as Official Policy

Kentucky Governor Welcomes NRA to Bill Signing Ceremony

Canada’s Senate Holds Hearings on “Rube Goldberg” Gun Control Law, Bill C-71

EDITORS NOTE: This NRA-ILA column is republished with permission.

VIDEO: Hawaii Signs Resolution To Abolish the Second Amendment

Hawaii may have just eclipsed California, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York as the most anti-gun, anti-freedom states in the Union. Abolishing the Second Amendment is about as un-American as you can get.

RELATED ARTICLES:

TX State Senator Introduces Bill To Ignore Federal Gun Laws

160 Gun Control Bills Sit in New York’s State Legislature

“The Protected Class” Are Hypocrites of the Highest Degree

EDITORS NOTE: This NRA-ILA column with video is republished with permission.

Guess Who Created the term ‘Assault Rifle’ used by Democrats? You guessed it Adolf Hitler!

Whenever you hear the term “assault rifle” used by Democrats you need to understand what this means.

On January 26th, 2017 Liberty Doll published a YouTube video titled “True History of Assault Rifles.” Hat tip to Ron Harvey.

Watch, listen and learn where the term assault rifle came from:

VIDEO: FBI Failed to Complete 276,000 Background Checks in 2018

The disarm America movement wants to expand – not fix – the NICS System. “276,000 times, the government couldn’t do its job efficiently.” —Grant Stinchfield

RELATED ARTICLES:

Opponents of Campus Carry Are Misguided and Misinformed

Sheriff Tony Mace: More New Mexico Sheriffs Declaring Second Amendment Sanctuaries

Guns Don’t Kill People; People Kill People

Lawmakers in Hawaii Propose Repealing Second Amendment

This is not the first time Democratic senators in Hawaii have called for congressional action on guns and gun violence.

Legislators in Hawaii, which has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the United States, moved this week to bring their concerns about the Second Amendment to the national level.

In Senate Concurrent Resolution (SCR) No. 42, introduced Tuesday, Democratic lawmakers assert that

in light of the numerous tragic mass shootings at schools, work places, and public events, this body believes that it is necessary to repeal or amend the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution.

In the resolution, lawmakers urge Congress to

adopt a proposed amendment to the United States Constitution pursuant to article V of the United States Constitution to clarify the constitutional right to bear arms.

The sponsors of the resolution suggest the Framers’ use of the term “well-regulated militia” was “intended only to restrict the United States Congress from legislating away a state’s right to self-defense.”

Hawaii has a history of enacting gun control. In 2016, Hawaii became the first state in the country to add gun owners in the state to the FBI’s centralized database (known as “Rap Back”), which allows federal authorities to notify local law enforcement when a gun owner is arrested. That bill, SB 2954, was co-sponsored by Sen. Roz Baker, who also introduced this week’s resolution.

Resolution co-sponsor Stanley Chang has a similar history of advocating gun control measures, while other legislators who introduced SCR No.42, like Sen. Laura Thielsen and Sen. Karl Rhoads, have likewise supported other anti-Second Amendment policies.

The Democrats’ resolution heavily references the 1939 Supreme Court decision United States v. Miller as a precedent for a “collective rights” interpretation of the Second Amendment. They call on Congress “to consider and discuss whether the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution should be repealed or amended to clarify that the right to bear arms is a collective, rather than individual, constitutional right.”

The Supreme Court settled the issue in 2008 in the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller decision, a ruling the resolution says “revitalized” the discussion of individual versus collective rights with respect to firearm ownership.

Justice Antonin Scalia wrote:

The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.

Scalia was joined in that ruling by Chief Justice John Roberts, as well as Justices Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito. The individual right interpretation was expanded and made the law of the land in 2010’s McDonald v. Chicago decision.

The difference in Second Amendment interpretations is significant.

As Dahlia Lithwick of Slate has explained, a collective interpretation of the Second Amendment is one generally championed by gun control activists. It holds that the Second Amendment “only protects the states’ authority to maintain formal, organized militias.” As such, the Second Amendment would only apply to federal gun regulations, leaving state and local governments to regulate and prohibit gun ownership as they saw fit.

Hawaii’s attempt to have Congress consider whether the Second Amendment should be “repealed or amended” comes one week after House Democrats passed the first major gun control legislation in years.

Individuals will, of course, decide for themselves whether the Founders intended the Second Amendment to be an individual or a collective right. But their own words can help shed light on the issue.

“No freeman shall ever be debarred the use of arms,” Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1776 while drafting the Constitution for Virginia.

This is not the first time Democratic senators in the state of Hawaii have called for congressional action on guns and gun violence, nor is it the first time the state has asserted its right to restrict gun rights. In 2018, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals found the state had violated the Second Amendment when law enforcement denied a Vietnam veteran the right to open carry a handgun. Hawaii fought the decision, and the court agreed last month to revisit its ruling, which could ultimately bring the case to the Supreme Court.

The resolution introduced this week now awaits a vote in the state’s legislature.

COLUMN BY

VIDEO: Hickenlooper Is the Poster Child of Failed Gun Control

“Driven by emotion rather than facts, the legislature limited magazines to 15 rounds, increased taxes on firearms purchases, and cemented universal background checks into law. It is interesting to note that firearms deaths haven’t gone down since 2013 like he said they would. In fact, in just a three-year period, firearms deaths jumped by more than 20% and homicides jumped up by 33%. But, he’ll set out on the campaign trail, shouting from the roof tops that the so-called gun safety laws he forced upon Colorado have made the state more dangerous and less free.” —Dana Loesch

Anti-gun Democrats Press for Publicly Funded Gun Control Advocacy

On Wednesday, the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations held a hearing supposedly geared toward “Addressing the Public Health Emergency of Gun Violence.”

That hyperbolic title, however, betrayed the real agenda of the event, which was to create the false impression that an unprecedented wave of firearm-related violence urgently demands an infusion of federal research dollars.

In truth, rates of firearm-related violence are relatively stable and near historic lows in the U.S., while tens of millions of dollars are already being poured into firearm-related studies by a variety of funding sources

To understand why taxpayer funded “gun violence research” should concern gun owners, it’s necessary to revisit current law and the history of the issue.

Numerous provisions of federal law prohibit using congressionally appropriated money for lobbying

That makes sense, because Americans expect their tax dollars to fund (or at least hope they will fund) projects and services for the general welfare, not for self-serving ambitions of whoever happens to be in power at a given moment.

One of these provisions specifically bans using appropriations for America’s public health apparatus to lobby for limitations on Second Amendment rights. It states: “None of the funds made available in this title may be used, in whole or in part, to advocate or promote gun control” (see Title II, SEC. 210 of legislation at this link).

Versions of this limitation have been included in appropriations bills dating back to 1996, when congressional investigations revealed systemic anti-gun bias in certain components of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

On March 6, 1996, a number of witnesses testified before a congressional appropriations subcommittee about how government researchers were misusing public funds to pursue a political agenda.

An Atlanta doctor noted that senior CDC staffers had for years been involved in an annual conference for organizations dedicated to using “a public health model to work toward changing society’s attitude toward guns so that it becomes socially unacceptable for private citizens to have handguns.”

Theses annual gatherings allowed the government scientists to coordinate with political activists in the gun control movement on messaging strategies.

The CDC was also funding research to promote this effort that was low-quality and of questionable significance but that was uncritically portrayed by the media as “scientific proof” that firearm ownership is dangerous.

One of the most infamous studies, for example, is still referenced by gun control advocates to this day as supposedly establishing that residents of a home with a firearm in it are more likely to be killed by that firearm than to use it in self-defense. But, as Dr. John Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center explained at Wednesday’s hearing, 86% of the homicides covered by the study were committed by means other than the residents’ own firearms. And, he said, researchers undercounted defensive firearm use by ignoring cases in which the assailant was not actually killed with the firearm.

The overarching goal of the CDC’s efforts in the 1990s was not the earnest quest for knowledge but helping to defraud the public into believing the gun control agenda had the imprimatur and mandate of “government scientists” whose only concern was “public health.”

Congress responded to this misuse of taxpayer dollars by enacting a specific prohibition against using funds appropriated for the Department of Health and Human Services to “advocate or promote gun control.”

That provision, which is merely a more specific statement of the general rule against using appropriated funds for lobbying, has often been falsely portrayed by the mediaacademia, and gun control advocates as a federal ban on gun violence research.

It is true that researchers whose only interest is in pushing a predetermined agenda of gun control certainly have had a lower expectation of federal funding since this provision has been in effect. But as Dr. Lott testified to the panel, the overall volume of research into firearm-related violence actually increased in the years following the appropriations rider limiting gun control advocacy.

Moreover, pursuant to Obama-era executive actions, federal funding for research into firearm-related crime has recently been robust, with Dr. Lott testifying that over $42 million in grants were awarded for these types of projects from 2015 to 2018.

Meanwhile, generating “science” to justify gun laws continues to be a profitable industry apart from federal funding. Several state and private universities have their own well-funded efforts, and anti-gun states are increasingly using public funding for this purpose as well.

To be clear, the NRA is not opposed to using legitimate research methods for serious study into the dynamics of violent crime, including firearm-related crime.

Unfortunately, as with media reporting on firearm-related issues, there is little reason to believe that competence, professionalism, and the detached, rigorous search for knowledge are the primary drivers of these efforts.

In the end, you get what you pay for, and gun control advocates obviously see the veneer of scientific inquiry – especially when it emanates from the federal government – as providing a solid return on anti-gun propaganda investments.

GUNS SAVE LIVES: Three Women Who Used Their Concealed Carry To Protect Themselves

The world today can be a dangerous place, especially for women. Every day we see stories on the news of women being accosted, threatened, assaulted and even murdered in America.

But many courageous women have decided to protect themselves and their families by arming themselves with a concealed carry for self-defense. These women learned about self-defense and gun safety during the training they received when applying for the permit.

Concealed handguns deter crime, according to the analysis of FBI crime data. Criminals are less likely to attack someone they believe to be armed. Detroit Police Chief Larry Craig agrees, stating that permitted concealed weapons are “a deterrent” to potential criminals.

Below, you will find three stories of heroines who chose to protect themselves and their families by using concealed carry to survive terrifying ordeals of physical threats, attempted abduction and murder and carjacking.

HER FAMILY WAS THREATENED IN A PARKING GARAGE

A story posted on the website forum The Well Armed Woman tells the tale of a seemingly ordinary day when a woman went on an outing with her mother. As they were in the parking garage putting bags in the woman’s truck, a 200-pound man approached their vehicle and began yelling obscenities at the women and threatening them.

At first, the woman decided to ignore the man, thinking he was mentally unstable and would leave on his own, and asked her mother to walk ahead and exit the garage.

However, instead of losing interest and leaving, the man began closing in on the woman as she stood near her car. She realized she wouldn’t have the option to call for help before the man reached her and that’s when she knew she was in trouble and would need to use her full-sized Springfield Armory XD .40–what she considered the best self-defense caliber–to show the hostile aggressor that she was prepared to defend herself and her family.

After doing a quick scan of the garage for safety, she reached into her purse and showed the approaching man her firearm still in its holster and warned him loudly to leave her alone. At first, the man was stunned and angry, but after realizing he didn’t have the power to attack the woman, he got into his car and left the scene.

Thanks to concealed carry for women, the potential victim and her mom escaped a dangerous situation, without firing a shot.

WOMAN SAVES HERSELF FROM MURDERER WITH CONCEALED CARRY (THEWELLARMEDWOMAN.COM)

A woman was walking to work early one morning when a man stopped her in the middle of the deserted street and pulled a knife, demanding she come with him immediately.

Terrified and overwhelmed at the prospect of being abducted by a stranger, she instinctively pulled her concealed carry weapon from the holster and told the man she wasn’t going anywhere.

The man was so intimidated by her actions that he wet himself before running away. The woman reached her office safely, but she never shared her story.

It would be a great tale if the story ended there but, unfortunately, there is a tragic twist. A few months later, the woman was watching the nightly news and saw the man again. The former convict had been arrested for the kidnap, rape and murder of another young woman he had abducted on her way to work early in the morning a few weeks after her attack.

Without using her concealed carry to protect herself, the woman may have been another victim of this convicted killer, but she was able to defend herself and escape.

A decade later, the woman founded a local chapter of a national women’s shooting organization, became a firearms instructor and participates in competitive shooting.

CARJACKED AND KIDNAPPED: ONE WOMAN’S STORY OF CONCEALED CARRY

Illinois became the last state to enact the conceal carry legislation and, fortunately for the victim in this story, it did so.

A petite young woman in Illinois was enjoying a typical day at the mall and left to get into her car in the well-lit parking lot. While she was getting her keys out, a large, aggressive man with a knife approached her and forced himself into her car with her.

The man slashed her arm with his knife. She was scared and overwhelmed–even more so when the man demanded that she begin driving him toward a rural destination.

However, the woman was not powerless. In fact, despite being short, she had the best handgun for small hands located in her purse. She just needed to get access to it.

She waited until the man was distracted and then reached down and grabbed her weapon and pointed it at her abductor. The man was so surprised that he immediately jumped out of the car and ran off.

The woman was treated at the hospital for minor injuries as a result of the initial knife wound.

Because she was prepared and trained with her concealed carry, she escaped a terrifying ordeal.

The man was later apprehended and charged with her abduction.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Women who carry a concealed handgun are more aware of their surroundings, self-confident, empowered and have the means to defend themselves in life-threatening situations.

Contact your local range if you have never handled a gun or don’t feel confident using a firearm. Ranges offer beginner classes which are a great first step for women looking to carry a concealed firearm.