Monday, September 29, 2014

Justice for Shaneen Allen!

In an unexpected-but-welcome turn of events — or, as the The Daily Caller calls it, “a stunning outbreak of sanity” — Shaneen Allen will be spared felony prosecution and jail time for unknowingly violating New Jersey’s concealed carry laws.

Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain reversed his previous decision and allowed Allen to enter the state’s pre-trial intervention program (PTI), which lets first-time offenders partake in supervised rehabilitative programs and services in place of prosecution and a criminal record.

McClain’s shift comes after acting New Jersey Attorney General John Hoffman sent county prosecutors guidelines for enforcing New Jersey’s strict gun laws for law-abiding out-of-state visitors who break them by mistake, such as Allen. Allen was arrested after mistakenly bringing a lawfully permitted gun into the state and voluntarily informing a police officer of the weapon during a routine traffic stop.

Hoffman advised taking a lenient approach in these scenarios, writing: “In most of these cases, imprisonment is neither necessary nor appropriate to serve the interests of justice and protect public safety.”

This reversal was welcome news for gun rights supporters everywhere -- and for Shaneen Allen especially. The decision means that Allen won’t be separated from her children because of a silly misunderstanding. It means that she can begin rebuilding her life.

If there is a silver lining Ms. Allen’s situation, it is that her case brought national attention to New Jersey’s horrible gun restrictions and also to the need for nationwide concealed carry reciprocity legislation. Already, New Jersey legislators have proposed “Shaneen’s Law” to protect out-of-state gun owners from this kind of prosecution. The federal equivalent of the law – the Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2013 – is also up for consideration.

Hopefully, Shaneen Allen’s misfortune will help politicians realize the pain that can be caused by persecuting law abiding gun owners.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A Pro-Gun Law That Liberals Should Love

The Wildlife Restoration Act of 1937 is a little-known law that should make even the most left wing of gun control fanatics happy about the surge in gun sales under President Obama.

The law, which is also known as Pittman-Robertson for the two politicians who initially pushed for its passage, funnels a portion of revenue from an excise tax on all firearms and ammunition imported or sold in the country by manufacturers to a variety of environmental programs: preserving wildlife habitats, creating public hiking trails, protecting endangered species and other conservation efforts.
The money also goes to building public shooting ranges and refurbishing roads and signage into game lands used during hunting season.

Revenues have doubled since President Obama started pushing for more gun control legislation. As reported by The Blaze, in 2012 the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service received $371 million from Pittman-Robertson revenue. Only two years later they received $760 million.

This year North Carolina alone received $19.9 million—more than three times the amount from 2007. According to The Raleigh News Observer, this money has helped The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission successfully cope with budget cuts in state funding.

“We’ve been able to put this money back on the ground for the public to enjoy,” said Erik Christofferson, Head of the Engineering and Lands Management Division for the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

Hunters are happy too, as fish and wildlife restoration programs funded by Pittman-Roberston have saved several species like white-tailed deer from extinction.

The Wall Street Journal has also cheered for Pittman-Robertson, reporting successful allocations to numerous environmentalist groups in Minnesota, Michigan, South Dakota, Nevada and Oregon.

Unfortunately, revenues from this law are dependent on gun sales, which have decreased in 2014.
Maybe liberal conservationists should help out their own cause and go buy a gun!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Children Of Shooting Instructor Write Letter To 9 Year Old Who Accidentally Killed Him

In the aftermath of their father’s tragic death, the children of shooting instructor Charlie Vacca have written a letter of forgiveness to the nine-year-old girl who accidentally shot him with an Uzi.

Vacca, a former Iraq and Afghanistan war veteran, was standing next to the girl at the Last Stop shooting range in White Hills, Arizona when the strength of the recoil yanked the Uzi upward. He was shot once in the head, and died at a local hospital several hours later. The girl and her family have not been named publically.

Although many have criticized the girl’s parents and the shooting range for letting a nine year old handle an automatic weapon, the four children — Christopher, Tylor, Elizabeth and Ashley, ages 11 through 19 — did not want the media discourse to “overshadow the impact this tragedy has had on everyone involved,” the family’s lawyer said.

In the letter released by their family attorney James Goodnow, Vacca’s children wrote: “You’re only 9 years old. We think about you. We are worried about you. We pray for you. And we wish you peace. Our dad would want the same thing. […] Our dad would want you to know that you should move forward with your life. You should not let this define you.”

Goodnow confirmed that it was the children’s idea to write the letter. “It’s rare to see something so human in a legal situation like this,” he added.

The maturity of the four Vacca children should be an example for all of the pundits who want to turn a clearly heartbreaking event into another news clip or sound bite.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

For New Jersey County Prosecutor, A Woman Owning A Gun Is A Worse Crime Than Domestic Abuse

The New Jersey County Prosecutor who let NFL wife beater Ray Rice off the hook is doing everything within his power to send a young mother to prison for accidentally bringing a legally purchased firearm into the state.

Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain, who is being criticized for taking too lenient an approach with Rice, has come down hard on Shaneen Allen, the Philadelphia mom who mistakenly brought a handgun into New Jersey from Pennsylvania earlier this year.

Allen was pulled over for a routine traffic stop a few months after she had purchased a gun to protect herself. Not realizing that her Pennsylvania handgun permit did not apply in New Jersey, she informed the officer that a gun was packed away in the trunk. She was arrested and charged with a felony.

As first time offenders, both Rice and Allen are eligible a diversionary program that would allow them to avoid prison time. While Rice was allowed to take advantage of the program and stay out of jail, McClain has prohibited Allen from doing so.

Now Allen is facing a mandatory three-year prison term while Rice walks away scot-free. At a hearing last month, Allen wiped away tears after a judge denied her motion to dismiss the charges.

Women like Shaneen Allen should have the right to protect themselves. If Rice’s wife Janay had been carrying a weapon, maybe it would have deterred her husband from his vicious attack.

Instead, the New Jersey government believes that a woman owning a gun is a worse crime than domestic abuse.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Rural Sheriffs Standing Up To Gun Control

An increasing number of rural law enforcement officers are refusing to enforce state and federal gun control laws that they believe violate the Second Amendment, according to News 21.

This trend is especially pronounced in states that have very strict gun laws, such as New York and Maryland.

Sheriff Tony Desmond of Scoharie County, New York, has publicly announced that he will not enforce the SAFE Act, the state’s hard line gun control law that passed in 2013.

“If you have an (assault) weapon, which under the SAFE Act is considered illegal, I don’t look at it as being illegal just because someone said it was,” he said.

Other New York Sheriffs, while stopping short of refusing to enforce the SAFE Act outright, are instructing their officers to use personal discretion in punishing violators.

“I feel as an elected official and a chief law enforcement officer of the county it would be irresponsible for me to say, ‘I’m not going to enforce a law I personally disagree with,’” said Sheriff Richard Devlin of Otsego County. “[But] I won’t do anything as far as confiscating weapons. We’re not checking out registrations. People that are lawfully using a firearm for target shooting, we’re not bothering those people.”

According to the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association (CSPOA), there are at least 484 sheriffs around the nation who oppose federal gun control in one form or another.  In Colorado, 55 of the state’s 62 sheriffs banded together to sue the state government to overturn the strict gun laws that passed the state legislature in 2013. (The case was dismissed).

The founder of the CSPOA, a former Sheriff from Arizona, says that sheriffs are upholding their duties by opposing gun control.

“I studied what the Founding Fathers meant about the Second Amendment, the right to keep and bear arms, and the conclusion is inescapable,” said Richard Mack, the founder of CSPOA. “There’s no way around it. Gun control in America is against the law.”