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Florida: The Truth about Open Carry — Erroneous Claims Exposed

Many folks remember that during the fight to pass Florida’s Concealed Carry law, the Florida Sheriffs Association opposed concealed carry.  They literally said they didn’t like “hidden guns.”

At the time, open carry was legal in Florida and had been for decades.  They said if people were going to be allowed to carry guns, they needed to carry them openly so law enforcement officers could see them and know who had guns — they claimed it was a matter of officer safety.

Now, they have reversed positions.  They claim concealed carry is fine and they don’t mind concealed guns.  BUT, open carry is dangerous. They claim they won’t know the good guys from the bad guys, and one sheriff (now retired) said law enforcement would have to “draw down” and anybody carrying openly.  You’ve probably heard or read most of the rhetoric.

They always lead off saying they are strong Second Amendment supporters then proceed to explain why they OPPOSE Second Amendment rights.

The Constitution guarantees your right to keep and bear arms and it certainly doesn’t say you can only exercise your rights if your sheriff agrees with it.

Below are the facts about open carry — it is a rebuttal of some the latest claims.  You may also click here The Truth About Open Carry to download a copy for the fact sheet to share with others.

The Truth About The Open Carry Bill & the 45 States that Allow Open Carry

In recent Palm Beach Post Blog articles and a Tampa Bay Times Blog article, the Chairman of the Florida Sheriffs Association’s Legislative Committee (FSA) is quoted with some erroneous claims regarding the proposed open carry bill in Florida (SB-300 by Sen. Don Gaetz and HB-163 by Rep. Matt Gaetz).

In recent Palm Beach Post Blog articles and a Tampa Bay Times Blog article, the Chairman of the Florida Sheriffs Association’s Legislative Committee (FSA) is quoted with some erroneous claims regarding the proposed open carry bill in Florida (SB-300 by Sen. Don Gaetz and HB-163 by Rep. Matt Gaetz).

Below are some of those claims and our responses.

FSA CLAIM: “The bill as currently drafted is extremely broad, lacking limits on when, how or where firearms could be carried.”

FACT: The same provisions and restrictions that apply to concealed carry also apply to open carry (s.790.06).  Only a person with a license to carry concealed will be able to carry openly. Additionally, the improper exhibition of firearms law (s.790.10) applies whether carrying concealed or openly.

Further, because of these and other erroneous claims, a clarification amendment, to stop open carry opponents from continuing to make such false claims, was added to the bill in Senate Criminal Justice Committee the morning of 10/20/15 – We know the spokesman made that claim even AFTER the clarification amendment was added because the spokesman made reference to an amendment “that didn’t pass” in the same committee meeting.

Since the FSA spokesman obviously doesn’t want to believe the NRA’s data, the following data was provided by Florida Carry, Inc. – and their data confirms ours.

FSA CLAIM: “The bill’s proponents claim that 45 other states already allow open-carry. But that’s not really accurate.”

FACT:  To the contrary, it is accurate.   Forty-five (45) states allow open carry of firearms.  Varying restrictions on open carry in some states does not alter the fact that 45 states allow open carry.

  • 15 of 45 open carry states require a license to carry concealed or openly.
  • 30 of 45 open carry states do not require any license to carry openly.
  • 0 of 15 of the concealed carry license states require additional training to carry openly.
  • 0 of 45 states offer a separate “open carry” license.
  • 2 of 45 states require an open carry holster.  On 1/1/16 Texas will require a holster.
  • 0 of 45 states require a retention holster.
  • 5 of 15 are “may-issue” states where law enforcement issues licenses.
  • 15 of 15 states require the license holder to produce the license on lawful demand by a law enforcement officer.

FSA CLAIM: “… most open-carry states have strict rules about … producing the permit on demand.”

FACT: This is a red herring.  FLORIDA law already requires license holders to produce a license on demand by a law enforcement officer.  And for the record, all 15 states that require a license, require producing the license on lawful demand by a law enforcement officer.

FSA CLAIM:  “…[I]t’s ‘intellectually dishonest’ to say open carry laws are working in the 45 other states because there are so many variations in the laws and the demographics.

FACT: The open carry laws are working in 45 states. Opponents have presented no evidence to the contrary – no evidence that it isn’t working in any state and no evidence of problems in any state. These are just baseless allegations.  Simply because different states have variations in their laws does not in any way alter the fact that open carry is allowed and that it’s working.

FSA CLAIM:  “In Pennsylvania, for example, cities can opt out of its open carry law and some, including Philadelphia, do just that, Gualtieri said. Florida cities don’t have the option to opt out of a state law.”

FACT:  Pennsylvania DOES NOT allow cities to opt out of its open carry law. Pennsylvania does not require a license for a person to carry openly.  Philadelphia cannot “opt out” of the state open carry law.  Pennsylvania state law allows the city of Philadelphia (and only Philadelphia) to require a license to carry openly in Philadelphia.

FSA CLAIM:  As for demographics, “You can’t compare Sioux Falls, S.D. to downtown Miami or downtown Tampa or downtown Orlando,” Gualtieri said.

FACT: This argument is illogical and perhaps intentionally misleading. Seventy percent (70%) of the American public live in open carry states from all regions of the country.  Many of the 45 open carry states have large and diverse cities just like Florida and where you live geographically, whether it’s Trilby, FL or Fanning Springs, FL, you have the same constitutional rights as citizens who live in Miami, Tampa, or Orlando.

FSA CLAIM: “…the state’s trespass law gives businesses the right to ask anyone openly carrying a weapon to leave their property,” but they … “will be reluctant to tell a person wearing a .45 to leave.”

FACT: Posting signs prohibiting open carry inside a business establishment is a simple solution.  Proper notification will stop citizens from even entering the establishment.  Property owners already must post trespass signs to notify the public to stay off private property.

Businesses have the right to refuse service and evict anyone they wish unless it’s done on the basis of race, gender, or religion.  Further, it is common to see signs that say, “No shirt, no shoes – no service.”  Why are they reluctant to post signs saying, “No open carrying of firearms?”

FSA CLAIM: “..if you are McDonald’s you won’t be able to exclude somebody from putting their gun on the table and sitting there and eating.”

FACT: Again, any business may evict a customer for behavior they deem to be offensive, dangerous or inappropriate.   Further it is a criminal offense under s.790.10 to exhibit a firearm in a rude or careless manner.

Brady Campaign Labels NRA “Terrorists”

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence has never had a firm grasp on the English language, as evidenced by the repudiation of their bizarre interpretation of the Second Amendment at the U.S. Supreme Court. However, this week, in an attempt to demonize NRA, Brady Campaign took their hyperbole to a new low, referring to the NRA as “terrorists.” That’s right; according to the Brady Campaign, the grassroots organization comprised of 5 million freedom-loving members that are dedicated to using the democratic process and legal framework to defend the constitutional rights of all Americans are “terrorists.”

The craven statement was made by Brady Campaign President Daniel Gross to The Hill. In the article, Gross criticized two Democratic presidential candidates, the NRA D- rated Bernie Sanders and F rated Lincoln Chafee, for not sufficiently conforming to the group’s radical gun control agenda. In taking particular issue with Chafee’s debate performance, in which the candidate stated he would try to negotiate with NRA, Gross stated, “[t]his is not a negotiation with the NRA… We don’t negotiate with terrorists.”

Unfortunately, this is not the first time radical gun control advocates, and others, have used this type of reprehensible language to slander gun owners or NRA. In early 2013, Stop Handgun Violence founder and president John Rosenthal, who is best known for his anti-gun billboard outside Boston’s Fenway Park, said on the Ed Schultz radio show that the NRA “in my mind is a terrorist organization as far as I’m concerned.”

Beyond full-time gun control advocates, the culprits are often their allies in the media. As recently as this month, New York Daily News columnist Linda Stasi wrote, “NRA should take its rightful place on the State Department list of terrorist organizations.” Last year, Mother Jones promoted a cartoon likening NRA to violent jihadis. Of course, the anti-gun Twittersphere and blogosphere are replete with similar inflammatory name-calling.

Not to be outdone, Hillary Clinton has gotten into the act. In June 2014, during a CNN “town hall,” Clinton remarked that gun control opponents “hold a viewpoint that terrorizes the majority of people.” However, never one to rest on her laurels, Clinton outdid herself in early October, comparing NRA to a state sponsor of terrorism when she told an Iowa crowd, “NRA’s position reminds me of negotiating with the Iranians or the communists.”

Those attempting to vilify NRA as terrorists or extremists should recognize that NRA’s positions are well within the American mainstream. A 2014 Gallup poll revealed that 63-percent of Americans believe that having a gun in the home makes the home a safer place to be. Further, another 2014 Gallup poll showed that when asked “[i]n general, do you feel that the laws covering the sale of firearms should be made more strict, less strict, or kept as they are now?” 52-percent of Americans opted to keep the laws the same or make them less strict.

In 2011, Barack Obama made a speech in Tucson, Ariz. following a tragic shooting, where he implored the nation to embrace civility in our political discourse. Obama noted that “only a more civil and honest public discourse can help us face up to our challenges as a nation.” Perhaps Obama would do well to direct similar comments more specifically at his increasingly base allies in the anti-gun community. We won’t hold our breath.

RELATED ARTICLES:

FBI: Crime Decreased in 2014

Those Poor Anti-Gun Researchers

In California, No Amount of Gun-Control Will Ever be Enough

Okay, Let’s Regulate Guns like Cars by Eugene Volokh

A commenter on a recent thread asked — seemingly from a pro-gun-control perspective — “Why can’t guns be treated like cars, regulated and available, only to those who demonstrate competence and compliance with laws?” That is a perfect excuse for me to reprise my analysis of the guns-cars analogy.

Cars are basically regulated as follows (I rely below on California law, but to my knowledge the rules are similar throughout the country):

  1. No federal licensing or registration of car owners.
  2. Any person may use a car on his own private property without any license or registration. See, e.g., California Vehicle Code §§ 360, 12500 (driver’s license required for driving on “highways,” defined as places that are “publicly maintained and open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel”); California Vehicle Code § 4000 (same as to registration).
  3. Any adult — and in most states, 16- and 17-year-olds, as well — may get a license to use a car in public places by passing a fairly simple test that virtually everyone can pass.
  4. You can lose your license for proved misuse of the car, but not for most other misconduct; and even if you lose your driver’s license, you can usually regain it some time later.
  5. Your license from one state is good throughout the country.

This is pretty much how many gun rights advocates would like to see guns regulated, and is in fact pretty close to the dominant model in the over 40 states that now allow pretty much any law-abiding adult to get a license to carry a concealed weapon: No need to register or get a license to have a gun at home, and a simple, routine test through which any law-abiding citizen can get a state license to carry a gun in public.

And even if we require a test for all possession of a gun, at home or in public — again, something that’s not required for cars — that would still mean that pretty much any law-abiding adult (or 16- or 17-year-old) would be able to easily get a license to carry a gun. That would provide more functional gun rights in the remaining non-shall-issue states (including, for instance, New York) than is provided under current gun regulations.

Now I suspect that many gun control advocates would in reality prefer a much more onerous system of regulations for guns than for cars. Of course, one can certainly argue that guns should be regulated more heavily than cars; thoughtful gun control advocates do indeed do this.

But then one should candidly admit that one is demanding specially burdensome regulation for guns — and not claim to be merely asking “why can’t guns be treated like cars?”

Incidentally, I don’t claim any great originality on these points: Others have made them before me, see, e.g., David Kopel’s “Taking It to the Streets,” Reason, Nov. 1999. But some things are worth repeating.

This post first appeared at the Volokh Conspiracy.

Eugene Volokh
Eugene Volokh

Eugene Volokh teaches free speech law, religious freedom law, church-state relations law, a First Amendment Amicus Brief Clinic, and tort law, at UCLA School of Law, where he has also often taught copyright law, criminal law, and a seminar on firearms regulation policy.

What is your Religion?

On 26 Nov 2008 at a tourist hotel in Mumbai India, a group of Islamic terrorists murdered 266 innocent people and injured over 250 more.  Their common question to the tourist’s at the hotel was “What is Your Religion”?  Christians and Jews were murdered because of their religion.  Muslim for the most part were allowed to live. Islamic terrorist’s Murder Jews and Christians

On 1 Oct 2015, Chris Harper-Mercer entered a community college in Oregon and murdered 9 people and injured many more.  He asked students, “What is Your Religion”?  Article by Pamela Geller Oregon Shooter Islamic Ties

Have you heard any discussion on the major news outlets about Chris Harper-Mercer’s religion or his ties to Jihad support?  Have you heard any Oregon law enforcement discussing Harper-Mercer’s ties to Islam?  Anything from the FBI or our pseudo President Obama?  No and you will hear little of anything about Harper-Mercer’s ties to Islam and his support of jihad (murder) against non Muslims at the Oregon community college.  You will only get such information from great people like Pamela Geller.

America will continue to have Islamic supporters murder our children in their schools for many years to come.  I have written several articles since 2003 about Islamic terrorists who have openly stated they will target our children in America.

What can be done.  In reality very little can be done to prevent these type murders because our senior law enforcement and politicians led by America’s number one Islamic supporter (Obama) will not allow common sense security measures to be implemented.

It is common sense that if one military force has an enormous supply of weapons and the other side has virtually none, the more heavily armed will conquer their foe.  This is why we give billions of dollars to Iraq and Syrian rebels.  We want them to be on the same playing field and have an equal chance of defeating ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

The same common sense concept needs to be applied in America.  Instead of limiting the number of people and guns that American citizens can own and legally carry/store in their homes and to be allowed to carry openly and concealed in public must increase.  Obama and the media (to include FOX News) will never advocate or encourage every lawful American over the age of 18 to carry a firearm with them at all times.  This means at schools, work, sporting events, and yes even our military on U.S. bases and recruiting centers.  Seems strange we should even have to discuss U.S. military personnel being allowed to be armed in America.  Seems common sense to me.

The vast majority of Americans are law abiding and the number of mass murderers are minimal.  If every lawful student in the Oregon college had a firearm do you think the murderer would have been able to kill nine and injure even more?  If criminals knew every American homeowner had firearms, every student in higher education schools had a firearm, every person in a bank had a firearm, every person at a sporting event had firearms, and every teacher and administrators in our elementary and high schools had firearms, do you think they would second guess themselves before planning a criminal act using a firearm.  Of course they would.

Islamic based terrorists and their supporters at all levels will continue to attack and murder innocent Christians and Jews around the world, and yes there will be more school type attacks in America.  Unfortunately there will continue to be Islamic terrorist supporters at the top level of our political chain who will continue to provide more rights for Muslims than they will for Christians and Jews.

America needs a leader who is strong such as Russia’s President Putin.  We need someone such as Donald Trump, otherwise America will fall just as Rome fell many years ago.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Why gun laws miss the mark – The Orange County Register

Oregon aftermath: America needs God

Deceptive Reporting on Donald Trump Exposed

AUSTIN, Texas /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Brad O’Leary, publisher of TheOLearyReport.com, former NBC News Radio/Westwood One talk show host, author of the The United States Citizens’ Handbook and former feature writer for USA Today Weekend magazine. Brad is calling out online publication BearingArms.com about contributor Bob Owens’ deceptive post. Find Brad’s response below and on TheOLearyReport.com:

A newspaper in the UK, called The Telegraph, is trying to fool people by claiming expertise on the Second Amendment.

They begin their article as if they are supporters. They do not remind their readers that the Second Amendment came about because the British Government tried to disarm our American colonists in our Revolutionary War, which was the spark that started the Revolution.

They do not tell their readers that the Second Amendment was based on British freedoms guaranteed in the Magna Carta.

Nor do they admit that a few years ago when the British Parliament stripped British citizens of those same rights, that they as a newspaper completely supported that effort.

Nor did they tell their readers that every reporter and researcher working on the story is a committed anti-gunner. You might say that I am guessing at this and I am.

When the American newspaper USA Today did a week of front-page new stories on gun-ownership in America, they began the first story with an apology. They usually try to have reporters who are balanced in their opinion, but they could not find a single reporter on their paper that supports the ownership of guns or had even fired a gun. If that is what happens in America, I consider it to be proof that in England it would be worse.

The Telegraph article ranks four tiers of supporters, with the lowest tier being against the Second Amendment. I do not object to whom they put in that lowest tier, but I object to whom they put in the third tier. They listed four Republicans who they claim hardly support the Second Amendment, Kasich, Trump, Carson and Christie. That would be really wishful thinking on the part of a bunch of gun-banners pontificating on freedoms that they stripped themselves of in the hope influencing Americans, who might follow and strip themselves of the same freedoms.

The most outrageous person that they put in that group who should be ranked in the top tier of Second Amendment supporters is Donald Trump. Before you gasp and tell me that is not what you have heard in the American media coverage, let me tell you some things that they could have told you but they haven’t:

  1. Donald Trump is the first presidential candidate in the history of American politics who said that he would sign concealed-carry reciprocity when Congress passes the Bill. It is true that the other candidates have made clear what they think about concealed-carry based on what they did in their own states or are willing to do in Congress but none have said that I will sign reciprocity Federal Bill into law.

Now I cannot tell you the ins and outs of how far all the other candidates go to support the Second Amendment but Trump has left no doubt that:

  1. He would allow military troops, bases and recruiting centers to be armed.
  2. He would see that the Federal government and FBI create an instant, accurate and fair list of criminals, including mentally defective people to deny them of ownership of guns.
  3. He would not sign into law any gun and magazine bans.
  4. He would enforce all of the Federal gun laws on the books and bring back a NRA supported Federal Law enforcement program called Project Exile, which was opposed by Rahm Emmanuel, Hillary Clinton, President Barack Obama and Eric Holder. They want guns banned. They do not want felons, drug dealers, rapists and murderers who use a gun in the process of a crime to be incarcerated for five years in Federal prison because they think it is a waste of Federal money.
  5. He wants to fix a broken mental health record system. And that effort is opposed by the American Psychiatric Association and by the board members of the legal drug cartel known in America as the pharmaceutical industry, who would prefer that Americans lockup their guns in a safe than lock up the drugs that are in their medicine cabinet.

Why would we (and you) allow gun-banners and extremists like the managers and reporters of The Telegraph spew ignorance and deceive readers by disseminating their deceptive “researched” information sourced from so called Conservative or pro-gun sources who are actually their own insiders pretending to be pro-gun experts?!

RELATED ARTICLE: Why gun laws miss the mark – The Orange County Register

Gun Rights Group Thanks Hillary Clinton For Energizing Gun Owners

BELLEVUE, Wash. /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms today publicly thanked Hillary Rodham Clinton for energizing the nation’s firearms owners to political action and virtually assuring their heavy turnout for the 2016 presidential election.

“Thanks to all of her anti-gun-rights statements, Hillary Clinton will guarantee that gun owners will exercise their voting rights next November,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “She seems eager to double down onBarack Obama’s failed attempts to stick pins in gun owners.”

Clinton, the former Secretary of State and U.S. Senator from New York, has a history of supporting gun control measures. She supports a ban on popular modern sport-utility rifles and original capacity magazines, and she suggested that gun owners are “a minority of people that hold a viewpoint that terrorizes a majority of people.”

“Just as it has been for the past seven years, since Barack Obama was elected in 2008, a Clinton nomination in 2016 will guarantee continued strong gun sales and expanded gun ownership,” Gottlieb contended. “Even among those who favor expanded background checks there is strong sentiment for protecting gun rights rather than controlling gun ownership.

“At the annual Gun Rights Policy Conference held over the weekend, one of the biggest concerns among the activists in attendance was a Clinton nomination, followed by a Clinton election victory,” he said. “American gun owners are convinced that she will turn the Oval Office into a nuclear war room against the Second Amendment.

“Between now and November 2016,” he continued, “we expect Hillary Clinton to try to stigmatize and marginalize gun owners, but in fact she will energize those millions of law-abiding citizens whose votes she fears the most. That’s why we’re grateful for her campaign rhetoric.

“By this time next year,” Gottlieb predicted, “if there is any apathy within the firearms community, it will have been transformed into activism.”

With more than 650,000 members and supporters nationwide, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (www.ccrkba.org) is one of the nation’s premier gun rights organizations. As a non-profit organization, the Citizens Committee is dedicated to preserving firearms freedoms through active lobbying of elected officials and facilitating grass-roots organization of gun rights activists in local communities throughout the United States.

RELATED ARTICLE: San Francisco’s Firearms Regulations Force City’s Last Gun Store to Close

Florida State University President Thrasher Flip-flopped 4 times on Campus Carry

The media love to expose the underbelly of politicians whether it favors their own position or not.  Changing positions on issues only once apparently is acceptable but multiple times on the same issue rankles even the most understanding and tolerant person.

It is particularly significant when someone who uses his/her position to expend state funds to lobby the legislature against the constitutional rights of the people who pay those taxes.

Further, it is egregious when that position and power can be used to curtail First amendment rights to keep others from speaking out against the administration on Second Amendment rights.

Conservative, pro-campus carry faculty members and employees have expressed fear of retaliation if they speak out in support of issues which the anti-gun administration opposes.  There is a chill and a suppression of First Amendment rights when it comes to speaking out on gun rights.  If you support the administration’s position, you’re golden.  If you oppose their position, they’re afraid to speak out.

The following article published in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune strikes at the heart of the problem of people of power forgetting their true obligation.

Williams: FSU president flip-flopped on campus carry 4 times

By Lee Williams

Published: Herald Tribune, Thursday, September 24, 2015 at 1:27 p.m.

John-Thrasher

Florida State University president John Thrasher

Florida State University president John Thrasher has become one of the most vocal opponents of campus-carry legislation in Florida.

The bill introduced by Rep. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, would allow concealed-carry licensees to tote firearms for self-defense on college and university campuses.

Thrasher has very adamantly and very publicly criticized Steube’s bill, and similar legislation in the Senate.

“I’m personally opposed to it. I think it’s a bad thing for universities to do. I would love to see us have a gun-free zone frankly on our campus,” Thrasher said earlier this year.

It is a position that Thrasher has held on-again, off-again in the past five years: a Herald-Tribune investigation found that Thrasher has switched his position on campus carry four times during that time frame.

Two state representatives have told the newspaper that Thrasher personally lobbied them to vote against the campus-carry bill, even though state law prohibits him from lobbying lawmakers for two years after leaving the Senate.

“It seems as though he’s obviously taking the position he would take as president of the university,” Steube said. “I’d ask him why he’s changed his position back and forth.”

Flip-flopping

Thrasher supported campus carry in 2010, according to the “Florida Candidate Questionnaire” created jointly by the National Rifle Association and the Unified Sportsmen of Florida, the state NRA-affiliate.

The candidates were asked: “Concealed Weapons and Firearms Licenses are only issued to law-abiding adults who are 21 years of age or older. Do you believe the constitutional right of self-defense does not end on the campus of a college or university and that anti-gun administrators should stop discriminating against persons licensed by the state to lawfully carry firearms for self defense?”

Thrasher agreed, putting a check mark by a response that stated: “Yes, and I would support legislation to stop colleges and universities from banning lawful self-defense on campus.”

The two gun groups gave him an “A” rating.

One year later, Thrasher, as Rules Committee chairman, single-handedly killed a concealed-carry bill that was sponsored by Sen. Greg Evers, R-Baker.

The reason? The daughter of Thrasher’s dentist had been accidentally shot and killed by her boyfriend during a late-night party at an off-campus fraternity. The boyfriend, who at 18 did not possess a concealed-carry license, told police he did not know his rifle was loaded. He also admitted to drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana.

Thrasher told one newspaper that the decision to kill the 2011 bill was “beyond personal.”

A year later, in the 2012 candidate questionnaire, Thrasher for the first time opposed campus carry. He wrote a personal note on the form to former Marion Hammer, executive director of the Unified Sportsmen of Florida and a past-president of the NRA: “Marion, you and I have discussed.”

Based upon his response, the NRA and USF downgraded Thrasher’s candidate rating to a B-minus.

In 2014, facing reelection, Thrasher switched his position on campus carry again — this time supporting the bill — and he wrote another note to Hammer: “I am a strong advocate of the NRA and the second amendment and plan to continue to be.”

The two gun groups restored Thrasher’s A-rating.

FSU’s Board of Trustees selected Thrasher to serve as president in September 2014.

Just 10 days after taking office, there was a shooting in the FSU library. A 31-year-old alumnus shot a university employee and two students before he was fatally shot by police.

After the shooting, Thrasher changed his position again, and now remains opposed to campus carry.

Thrasher, in a brief interview Wednesday, said he had never flip-flopped since the death of his dentist’s daughter.

“When the young woman was shot on campus and killed accidentally by a student who had a gun, that’s when I changed my position,” he said. “I don’t care what I filled out. My position is that I’m opposed to guns. I don’t think it’s a good idea. That’s where I was last year. That’s where I was after the young woman was shot. I don’t care what the NRA says. Thank you.”

Hammer told the Herald-Tribune that she seldom sees anyone switch their position on the campus-carry bill, much less four times, since it “has no gray area.”

“Generally, we believe that when a candidate flip-flops, they have reasons that are not in the best interest of the Second Amendment that they profess to support,” she said.

Read more.

LIKELY FOES: CNN’s Liberal vs. Rising Conservatism in Black Americans

AUSTIN, Texas, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Brad O’Leary, publisher of TheOLearyReport.com, former NBC News Radio/Westwood One talk show host, author of the The United States Citizens’ Handbook and former feature writer for USA Today Weekend magazine, is bringing light to the current rise stemming from longstanding historical roots in conservatism within the Black community in his latest Op-Ed piece, listed below and on TheOLearyReport.com:

How much of the Black population will support Republicans on the three major issues in the 2016 Presidential election?

When George Bush ran for president he got 8% of the Black population’s vote. There was a time when Republican candidates could only count for 8% of the Irish population’s vote. It is perhaps time for the Black voters to feel just as the Irish did, that the Democratic Party deserted them.

According to CNN’s most recent poll, the three major issues that American voters will focus on will be immigration, abortion and guns.

Now, who am I to say that CNN’s liberal bias, if correct may be a danger for the Democratic Party?

CNN will tell you that according to the polls, that the Democrats will be favored. However if you look at that result and the results from other polls in judging Black population responses, it may explain one of the reasons that Donald Trump seems to have the support of 20% of the Black population.

In addition to political polls there is an incredible amount of consumer polling that has been done on the Black population. That polling should frighten the Chairman of the Democratic Party.

First let’s take the Second Amendment and gun ownership. There is no question that gun control was historically a major political effort started at the beginning of the Civil War and was principally designed by the leadership of the Ku Klux Klan, who did not want Black people, especially in the South, to own guns, not even for hunting.

In some places in the South, if a Black person wanted to hunt and keep in mind that most families were fed that way, they had to get permission from the sheriff for a twenty-four hour period for hunting. We have heard stories from many people about that era, including from Condoleezza Rice, who has always supported the 2nd Amendment because her family historically owned guns namely to protect themselves from the Ku Klux Klan.

Today we have many significant Black leaders like Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke and Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who both urged people to buy guns to protect themselves.

We have seen a number of consumer polls indicate that a majority of the Black community, following recent riots, does not fear the police. Instead they fear the drug dealers and the hoodlums who are trying to stir up division and hatred making Black neighborhoods and streets unsafe. It is no wonder that the percentage of the Black population that supports the Second Amendment has increased in the last few years. Recently during the Miss Universe contest, one of the contestants, Miss South Carolina USA, Meagan Pinckney was asked about gun ownership, presumptuous but possibly by a judge, who might have believed that since she was Black and from the South she would give a gun control answer. Contestant Pinckney stunned the television audience by showing her knowledge and support of firearm ownership. Her opinion is not just from her but it is from her peers as well.

Hillary Clinton has made her position clear. She would make it difficult for anyone who is White, Asian or Black to buy a gun, particularly in the cities. At the same time Donald Trump and all the other candidates for president are the strongest group of 2nd Amendment supporters that this country has ever seen.

The second issue CNN touts is such a clearly a Democratic majority supported issue. This issue is abortion.

Now there is no question that a majority of voters believe in a woman’s right to choose. But in a paradox of thinking, a greater majority of Americans think that abortion is either manslaughter or morally unacceptable in today’s society. That doesn’t include the rather substantial number of Americans who believe that 3rd term abortions where a fetus can be seen as moving, breathing and is deemed capable of life outside the womb, is acceptable in massive numbers.

The number of people in the Black population who believe that abortion is morally unacceptable is greater than anyone has ever believed.  The reason that Proposition 9, a heated topic of its own, which would allow gays to marry in California, was defeated at the ballot box largely due to the rallying of Black Christian voters who voted against it in massive numbers. This supports the concept that the Black population is actually quite conservative.

If you do not believe me, do your own test. In New York, five Black fetuses are aborted for every one White fetus. So go to the Black churches in a very liberal city like New York and ask the pastor and congregation what they think of abortion?

Frankly every time Hillary fights for more abortions and protecting the bargain basement selling of fetuses by Planned Parenthood she is also turning off church going Black women. Now that is an issue that no one can claim any of the Republican presidential candidates, including Trump, doesn’t have a clear opinion on. That opinion is there needs to be a stop to aborting Black babies.

Now we get to the third issue that CNN is so excited about, the issue of immigration, which clearly makes Trump and most Republicans extremists. Once again let’s consider how the Black population views immigration and some of the other effects that come from immigration. A rapper by the name of Azealia Banks unexpectedly reflected the conservative outlook of the Black population with her recent pro-Trump comments,

“Do you think it’s bad that I sort of agree with Trump’s stance on immigration? Not for any reason other than black Americans still not having been paid reparations for slavery and the influx [of] INTERNATIONAL immigrants (not just Mexicans), are sucking up state aid, and government money, space in schools, quality of life etc.?? It’s selfish, but America has been really good at convincing me that everyone else’s problems are more important than my own. I want my f*****g money!!…Me first!!!…Thoughts?”

Two areas of life that are directly impacted by immigration are job creation and drivers licenses.

Let me be clear about what the Black population thinks about immigration. For the most part they think the same as Whites and Asians. They think it favors Wall Street, it boosts corporate profit and it increases the value of many stocks. And no one polled is aware of how big immigration is every year. Only 10% of all Americans select the correct immigration numbers.

The Black population is opposed to Hillary’s immigration policy and they are opposed to the attempt by states to let illegals (“Sorry Mr. President that is my word.”) have driver’s licenses without automobile insurance. There is such a law that was just passed in California and the governors in other red states are completely supportive of giving illegals documentation. Now if anybody out there would like to see the polling that proves that this is true, I would be happy to send it to you. 65% of Hispanic citizens of the United States also opposed driver’s licenses without insurance. No surprise because illegal Hispanics hiding from “White” justice aren’t hiding in White neighborhoods.

The Black population believes and correctly so, that Hispanics take jobs away from them, particularly Hispanic teenagers versus Black teenagers.

EDITORS NOTE: For more analysis and commentary from pollster Brad O’Leary, please contact: Radio/TV Show Bookings: grassrootsbehavioral@gmail.com or (737) 704-1578. Readers may download The United States Citizens’ Handbook at no cost: www.USCH.us . Please visit: www.TheOLearyReport.com.

Trump: Protecting Our Second Amendment Rights Will Make America Great Again

Presidential candidate Donald J. Trump released his position on the Second Amendment. Trump’s policy states in part:

The Second Amendment guarantees a fundamental right that belongs to all law-abiding Americans. The Constitution doesn’t create that right – it ensures that the government can’t take it away.

[ … ]

We need to get serious about prosecuting violent criminals. The Obama administration’s record on that is abysmal. Violent crime in cities like Baltimore, Chicago and many others is out of control. Drug dealers and gang members are given a slap on the wrist and turned loose on the street. This needs to stop.

[ … ]

All of the tragic mass murders that occurred in the past several years have something in common – there were red flags that were ignored. We can’t allow that to continue.

[ … ]

Gun and magazine bans are a total failure. That’s been proven every time it’s been tried.

[ … ]

The right of self-defense doesn’t stop at the end of your driveway. That’s why I have a concealed carry permit and why tens of millions of Americans do too. That permit should be valid in all 50 states.

[ … ]

Banning our military from carrying firearms on bases and at recruiting centers is ridiculous. We train our military how to safely and responsibly use firearms, but our current policies leave them defenseless.

To read Donald Trump’s full policy on the Second Amendment click here.

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VIDEO: Playing Politics with a Tragedy

In this News Minute from the NRA Institute for Legislative Action, Jennifer Zahrn reports that gun control activists like Hillary Clinton and Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe are exploiting the recent tragedy in Roanoke, Virginia to push gun control.

Study: Criminals Don’t Get Guns From Legal Sources

police gusnNumerous studies conducted by academic researchers and by the federal government have shown that criminals do not use legal markets to obtain guns. And now we have more evidence of this reality, this time looking at criminals in Chicago.

Philip J. Cook, Susan T. Parker, and Harold A. Pollack conducted interviews with criminals being held in the Cook County Jail.  Their primary findings were that criminals get guns from their “social network,” i.e. friends and persons known to them, but generally not from the various legal sources available to them.

They do not buy guns in gun stores.  They do not get guns at gun shows. They do not buy them from Internet sources.  The study even found that criminals only rarely steal guns.

Cook and colleagues also found that criminals do not often buy guns on the used market, as they have a fear of buying a gun from a source they do not know.  Fear of police stings, or from being turned in by law-abiding gun owners leads them to obtain guns from sources they trust, most often, family, fellow gang members, and other criminals. They also found that criminals do not hold guns for a long period, fearing that a gun could be traced to a specific crime.

The findings were clear.  Criminals do not engage in activities that would make them subject to any sort of a “universal” background check requirement or any of the other common proposals put forth by the anti-gun crowd.  As usual, this study illustrates that laws and regulations only impact the law-abiding.

So what did these findings lead the researchers to conclude?  If you thought the “obvious,” you’d be disappointed.

They concluded that since criminals do not hold guns long, “disrupting” the supply chain would have a positive effect on criminal gun use. That seems like a safe conclusion driven more by common sense than any evidence from an expensive academic study.  But how this “disruption” can be achieved is not spelled out or suggested.

Of course, the authors refuse to offer the obvious conclusion many will draw from their results: expanding background checks would have no impact on the criminal acquisition of guns.  Since these criminals do not use gun stores, gun shows, or even legal private gun sellers, there is no point in the criminal supply chain where a background check would make any difference whatsoever.

But these researchers could not admit that glaring reality.

Instead of admitting that their own research argues against the primary goal of the anti-gun movement right now — expanded “universal” background checks — the authors reveal their pre-established bias.

White House, Media Mislead on Crime Trends, Ignore Evidence that Could Save More Lives

Tragedy strikes – and the White House immediately shifts into exploitation mode, trying to use raw emotion to push “solutions” that don’t fit the facts. From Charles C. W. Cooke at National Review comes a timely reminder, however, that despite well-publicized crimes, the nation as a whole is getting safer and less violent.

As Mr. Cooke notes, the U.S. firearm homicide rate peaked in 1993 and has fallen dramatically since then. Meanwhile, he adds correctly, gun control has been rolled back and the number of firearms in private hands has increased dramatically. Yet 88% of the public were unaware of favorable crime trends in a May 7, 2013, Pew Research Center Poll. Mr. Cooke attributes this knowledge gap, in part, to the increasing prevalence of “round-the-clock news” and more powerful forms of social media.

It’s a sad commentary that more news and more communication may have somehow led to greater ignorance on important matters of public policy. Your NRA, for its part, has been doing its level best to keep the record straight, including with the reports mentioned here and here.

Yet it’s no accident on gun control advocates’ part that they mislead the public on the true state of affairs. As we’ve mentioned before, a PR firm hired to produce a gun control messaging guide advises, “Always focus on emotional and value-driven arguments about gun violence, not the political food fight in Washington or wonky statistics.” It also counsels advocates to act quickly after a highly-publicized event, while emotions are at their highest. As for the facts, gun control advocates are told, “Don’t wait for them.” Instead, “The clearest course is to advance our core message about preventing gun violence independent of facts that may shift on us over time.”

Once again, sadly, we see that advice in action. Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, for example, was using Wednesday’s televised murders in Roanoke to call for universal background checks, even before the suspect had been apprehended and before news emerged that the perpetrator had, in fact, passed a background check to buy the gun he used.

Evil and violence are terrible things, and Americans understandably react with horror and sadness when confronted by them. Yet denying reality and exploiting emotions do not solve problems. Ensuring that peaceable, responsible people have the means to defend themselves is why NRA remains resolute in its mission to defend and protect the Second Amendment.

Rather than promoting “solutions” that offer false promises, like “universal” background checks, policy makers should study what’s working redouble their efforts on those fronts. Dismissing the crime deterring benefits of firearm ownership is neither smart nor compassionate. Empowering good people to defend themselves against violence is, and this defining principle will continue to drive everything that NRA does.

Reduce Firearm Ownership, Say Anti-Gun Researchers

A new “study” by David Swedler, trained at the (gun control crusader Michael) Bloomberg School of Public Health, and co-authored by longtime anti-gun researcher David Hemenway, of the Harvard School of Public Health, uses rigged methodology to conclude that law enforcement officers are more likely to be murdered in states that have higher levels of gun ownership. As a result, Swedler and Hemenway say, “States could consider methods for reducing firearm ownership as a way to reduce occupational deaths of LEOs.”

In what may be the understatement of the century, Swedler and Hemenway concede that it’s “possible” that law enforcement officers are more likely to be murdered than other Americans because they have “more frequent encounters with motivated violent offenders.” To say the least. According to the FBI, from 2004 to 2013, 46 percent of officer murderers had prior arrests for crimes of violence, 63 percent had been convicted on prior criminal charges, 50 percent had received probation or parole for prior criminal charges, and 26 percent were under judicial supervision, including probation, parole, and conditional release, at the time of the officers’ murders.

On the other hand, Swedler and Hemenway say, law enforcement officers are able to defend themselves because they carry handguns, an argument that on its face endorses the carrying of handguns by private citizens, which is certainly not what the anti-gunners intended.

In painstaking academic detail, economist John Lott shows that Swedler and Hemenway skewed their study by comparing the number of law enforcement officers murdered with firearms in each state, to the percentage of suicides committed with firearms in each state, pretending that the latter accurately measures each state’s level of gun ownership. Additionally, the anti-gun researchers didn’t extend their comparisons over time to determine whether law enforcement officer murders increased or decreased in each state or did so in comparison to other states.

The anti-gunners also try to measure gun ownership with survey data, which is problematic, because over-reporting takes place in states where people are more supportive of gun ownership, while under-reporting takes place in states where anti-gun viewpoints are more common.

For the obvious reason, Swedler and Hemenway didn’t point out that law enforcement officer murders have been decreasing while ownership of firearms has been increasing dramatically. From 1993 to 2013, the most recent year of data from the FBI and BATFE, the annual number of law enforcement officers feloniously killed with firearms dropped 61 percent, while the American people acquired 140 million new firearms. In 2013, the number of law enforcement officers feloniously killed with firearms was less than half the annual average of the last 20 years.

That, however, is not what you want to point out if you’re jockeying for a cut of the $10 million that President Obama has asked Congress (p. 8) to throw at so-called “gun violence research” or to continue to promote an anti-gun agenda.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the NRA/ILA website.

The Biggest Bomb Thrower of All

With all the talk about political “civility” directed at the GOP by those in the mainstream media, I find it a bit ironic that their ire isn’t directed at the biggest rhetorical bomb-thrower of them all: President Barack Obama.

It’s time for us all (myself included) to abandon the idea that President Obama is just a good guy supporting bad policies. Having been a Secret Service agent on his protective detail, it is not easy for me to concede this, but it is necessary. I have a personal attachment to Barack Obama, likely developed through years of interactions while on his detail, and despite the litany of disastrous policies emanating from his White House; it has always been tough for me to believe that he is not a “nice guy.”

I can recall a number of television and phone interviews where I forcefully defended the President personally (not ideologically), after which I received a deluge of emails from people upset that I was doing so. After witnessing his latest in a series of low-blow rhetorical attacks on his political opposition, however, I’ve regretfully come to the conclusion that he is simply not the man I thought he was.

I’ve been frustrated and upset at him in the past, for destroying our healthcare system (and cancelling my insurance policy in the process), taxing away any chance of an economic recovery, and for forcing the tentacles of the government deeper into my life and yours; but I’ve always cooled and settled on the idea that while he was an ideologue and poor leader, he remained a generally decent guy. But decent men and women do not stand in front of the world, before the most powerful bully pulpit in the history of mankind, and act and speak as he does.

Attacking political opponents in the Washington DC political cesspool is nothing new or earth shattering but, the rhetoric used by this President to speak about his political opposition is close to unprecedented.

To prove my point, here are some of President Obama’s low lights:

  • On political opposition to the disastrous Iran deal, and a joint opposition letter drafted to the Iranians, President Obama stated, respectively, that hegemonic, Iranian extremists were “making common cause with the Republican caucus.”  And, “I’m embarrassed for them.”
  • On political supporters of common-sense voter ID requirements, President Obama stated, “The real voter fraud is people who try to deny our rights by making bogus arguments about voter fraud.”
  • On political supporters of right-to-work legislation, President Obama stated they are “are more concerned about German shareholders than American workers.”
  • On Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren’s opposition to Trade Promotion Authority, President Obama stated “the truth of the matter is that Elizabeth is, you know, a politician like everybody else.”
  • On Fox News’ coverage of the struggling economy, President Obama stated, “We’re going to have to change how our body politic thinks, which means we’re going to have to change how the media reports on these issues.”
  • On those who oppose his continued attacks on the Second Amendment, President Obama stated, “As long as there are those who fight to make it as easy as possible for dangerous people to get their hands on a gun, then we’ve got to work as hard as possible for the sake of our children.”
  • On political opposition to his massive debt and deficits, President Obama stated, “it’s encouraged our enemies, it’s emboldened our competitors”
  • On political opposition to Obamacare, President Obama accused opponents of “exploiting fears instead of getting things done.”

Truth be told, I am an emotional person who takes assaults on our liberties and freedoms personally, and I have been known, on talk-radio, television, and in print, to loudly call out the Left for their three-front war on our future; but I’m not trying to be the “nice guy,” I’m trying to sound the alarm about the danger we are in. So, in going forward, let’s dispense with the mainstream media nonsense about how “nice” of a guy President Obama is and focus on the real man behind the ideology—a man who, I truly believe, is angry, resentful, and bitter towards those who cherish freedom, liberty, and a limited-government which enables the limitless flourishing of individuals.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the Conservative Review. The feature image is by Carolyn Kaster | AP Photo.

Response to Tallahassee Democrat Op-ed on ‘Docs v. Glocks’ by Marion P. Hammer

Below is Marion P. Hammer’s response in the Tallahassee Democrat to anti-gun editorials attacking the courts on the “Docs v. Glocks” issue.

It’s not about the First Amendment

By Marion P. Hammer,

My View 4:57 p.m. EDT August 4, 2015

The column “Free Speech does not threaten gun ownership” (Aug. 3) by Howard L. Simon of the ACLU is a smokescreen.

Twice now federal judges have ruled that the so-called “Docs & Glocks” law does not violate First Amendment free speech rights of doctors and medical personnel. The law stops pediatricians and other physicians from prying into our personal lives, invading our privacy and straying from issues relating to disease and medicine into questioning children or their parents about gun ownership and guns in the home.

Read, “Free speech is no threat to gun ownership,” by Howard L. Simon posted  in the Tallahassee Democrat on August 4, 2015.

In both rulings, the court made it clear that the law is an appropriate regulation of professional speech. The state has a duty to protect the rights of vulnerable patients against doctors who use their examining rooms to interrogate parents and children about gun ownership for the purpose of delivering their anti-gun political messages.

If a patient answers questions like, “Do you own a gun?” or “Do your children have access to guns in your home?” or “Did you know that having a gun in your home triples your risk of becoming a homicide victim?,” the patient is likely to be given the “Advice to parents” the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends on their website: “Never have a gun in the home. Do not purchase a gun. Remove all guns present in the home.” That is not medical care. That is politics.

That political motivation has nothing to do with the health care and medical treatment we seek for our children and for which we are paying when we enter a doctor’s office.

Read, Federal court says state can enforce ‘doc vs. glocks’ law by Gary Fineout in the Tallahassee Democrat posted on July 29, 2015.

Further, these questions are ethically wrong. Any doctor who asks them is committing a form of unethical conduct known as an “ethical boundary violation.” Any doctor who commits an ethical boundary violation can and should be disciplined. We need to be able to trust our doctors. Doctors who intentionally step over that ethical and legal boundary clearly cannot be trusted.

Other ethical boundaries don’t allow doctors to take advantage of vulnerable elderly patients and question them about property and assets they own, allow them to encourage these elderly patients to make gifts of cars, jewelry or other assets to the doctor, or make the doctor a beneficiary in a will.

Additionally, entering the answers to gun ownership questions into medical records and computer databases is a de facto form of registration of gun owners and is already prohibited by law.

Any pediatrician truly concerned about gun safety is free to hand out gun safety brochures to all parents. The First Amendment smokescreen that is being used to excuse unethical and political abuse of patients privacy rights needs to stop and doctors should stick to medical care.

ABOUT MARION P. HAMMER

Marion P. Hammer is a past president of the National Rifle Association and current executive director of Unified Sportsmen of Florida.

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