16 November 2006

Bad News, and Bad News

Firstly, something's screwy with blogger. Can't make my posts nice and neat. Unfortunately, at the moment, I haven't the time to fool with HTML tags, so this post, in all its raw beauty, will have to do for now.

Secondly, my own computer at home is having issues. I got some errors in the boot sector, and in trying to get it fixed, the USB and LAN connectivity decided it would bug out. This is the computer I usually do a lot of my research and blogging on (as opposed to this one I'm on at work).

I don't know when I'll get it fixed. So if the RKBA Campus roundup gets delayed, you'll know why.

Finally, on a more national level, San Fran shows where its values lie.


An organization known for instilling values and discipline to youth loses out to a lifestyle beset by tendencies to take advantage of youth.

Now, tell me how on earth this is supposed to show support for our country? Isn't that part of what an education is about?

Obviously, not to a loud minority, who seem to place a high premium on the right to buggery.

Hooray for the Left Coast.

09 November 2006

Campus RKBA Roundup #5

Back in full force, you regulars! Neither snow, cold, disappointing elections, nor crappy internet connections will prevent me from delivering to you:

The Mad Hatter's
Campus RKBA Roundup #5:

The "please don't beat me for being late" edition.

Now, you're probably wondering, "Where does the Mad Hatter get all his stuff?" All will be revealed in good time. But not in this edition.

But suffice it to say, I have my sources. And you can feel free to contribute your own findings by emailing them to me at vol_907@bitemycrank.com (replace "bitemycrank.com" with "yahoo.de"). I'll give you the hat tip...and if I haven't posted a reciprocal link to your blog yet, I'll do that, too.

But enough self-promotion. Let's get down to finding out what I learned about what America's supposedly best and brightest are saying about a certain Amendment to our Bill of Rights.

This comes hot off the wire--thanks to the vigilant folks over at KeepandBearArms.org. A debate was held over at Harvard between Professor Mark Tushnet and historian Saul Cornell "over the challenges and possibilities for progressive gun control policy."

Basically, you have these two lefties arguing among themselves over whether or not it's worth liberals' time to address gun control policies in a manner that would make everyone happy.

Interesting how, in the 90s, "progressives" were all about getting as many anti-gun initiatives passed as they could. Now, the focus seems to be towards taking more of the middle ground.

Big government isn't really that interested in the people's happiness. It's interested in staying in power. That's why your best friend is the Constitution. Correction: your best friend in any case is God (He's got the best answers), but not everyone wants to hear that.

Baylor University: another article responding to the Amish school shooting, calling again for less violence, once again thinks the root of the problem has been found:
These preventative measures are a good start and will probably deter some potential violence, but they ignore the bigger issue at hand: guns.
I am astounded at the Editorial Staff's wisdom. Well justifies the several thousand Mom & Dad (or the State, if they went the route of indentured servitude known as financial aid) spent on your tuition this year.

A little confusion here, which is not uncommon to those still in the hormone-dominated throes of post-adolescence. Guns are the issue, but not everyone who owns one will do evil things with them. So, they refine their argument a bit:
The only logical solution to this problem is to step up the criteria for owning a gun -- or knife or whatever -- and make it near impossible for anyone with a mental problem, diagnosed or not, to come near them.
The ramifications for those who had breakdowns over losing the 2004 presidential election are dire.

Boston College: This one comes from a year and a half ago, doing a little bit of journalistic investigation covering a 2005 GAO report entitled "Gun Control and Terrorism." The report details a whopping 44 instances in 2004 where the NICS identified people with positive matches to a terrorist watch list.

35 of them were passed because there was nothing valid to deny the transaction. Let's stop right there and ask ourselves a few questions:

- What were the details surrounding these cases? They're lacking. Some may have wanted protection because they turned their back on whatever organization they were part of.

- Would you rather civil rights be trampled upon because of suspicion without evidence? I wouldn't want a gun in the hand of another Timothy McVeigh, but if it means disarming the majority of citizens to strain out a few pesky gnats (and guns used in crime comprise about a tenth of a percent of all privately-owned guns)--I'd err on the side of civil rights here.

- Speaking of numbers, where's the comparison to the total number of NICS checks initiated?

Add all of these together, and you see why the issue really received so little attention nationally. It seems the 2nd Amendment is doing a pretty good job improving national security, despite one dweeb's pathetic attempt at hinting that it's undermining it.

When I first checked out Carnegie Mellon's Tartan Online for material, the gay wedding ring ad (Puh-lease) made me think "Oh God...I bet I can tell what kind of articles I can find here" (since pro-gay usually means pro-Left, and therefore, anti-RKBA). But you can't judge a book by the cover. There's a 2005 forum article about guns on campus--pro, by the way. So much for first impressions.

What caught my eye was the more recent (Oct. 10) article about a philosophy professor who has "an arsenal of guns bigger than the National Guard," "600 hours of deadly force firearms training," has co-authored and edited an official police weapons training document, is a sworn deputy, and is a self-proclaimed gunnie.

His stance on his students' reactions:
"They're intrigued by it, perhaps put off by it, but intrigued, and they want to know more. Which is what I would wish my effect on my students to be. Whatever kind of clown I come off as being, I would wish that the effect on my students as being they want to know more. Wonder begins inquiry and if they are wondering about me, well maybe they'll sit still long enough for the videos and the readings [that allow them to] dig into the issue."
I like this guy. An academician and a gun nut. Wish there were more like us around.

Did you guys like that? Here's some more encouragement from Drexel University. One student debunks the hype surrounding the .50BMG in a Sci-Tech article. For example:

Another claim is that the .50-caliber rifle would be the perfect weapon for criminals, since a mugger with that much firepower would be, shall we say, difficult to deal with. I think this claim is made by people that have never seen a .50-caliber rifle: the things are enormous. Five and a half feet long (that is to say, probably taller than you are,) they weigh upwards of 35 pounds. Most .50-caliber rifles are bolt-action and have to be manually reloaded after each shot. Let me be more blunt: I'm not afraid of anything that fires one bullet a minute, weighs 35 pounds, and is almost six feet long. If a mugger pulled one of these one me, I would laugh. I'd be more afraid of pretty much anything else: a different type of gun, a knife, heck, even a crowbar would scare me more.
It is well worth a read, very informative, and written in the sort of "wake up you dumb@$$" attitude I love to read every so often. While you're at it, send a copy over to the .50 caliber terror (mongering) guys.

A blast from the past from Florida A&M, lamenting last year's legislation intended to better protect those caught up in the inevitable legal process following the use of deadly force in self-defense.

People, it was not written as a measure to for citizens to "be their own police," nor does it give "entirely too much freedom to the trigger-happy, gun-toting NRA members who want an excuse to kill the people who tick them off." Check the membership of the NRA and count how many members have a criminal history. Then compare it to the Democratic Party.

I think libs confuse that organization with the IRA. With as much depth as most of them look into gun issues, it wouldn't surprise me if that were true.

More recently, a student at LSU noticed last week what the pro-RKBA crowd has been saying about "gun free zones" all along: they're open invitations to criminals.

The intent of such legislation is to provide an area where firearms are forbidden and thus make those areas "safer." In effect, two groups of people are allowed firearms: police and criminals. While a real life game of "cops and robbers" plays out in these areas, the law-abiding citizen is left out in the cold, not even able to fend for themselves.
It didn't really help prevent three armed robberies near LSU's campus shortly before the article was written.

And that's it for this week's round-up. Stay tuned next week for more of the same!

Reactions to the Recent Election

I was perusing NewsMax this morning, checking up on a few reactions to this past election. There was some lamentation about the power shift to the left, but there was something strikingly different about the "losing" side's response.

No finger pointing at the other guys. No accusations of "stealing the election." No mass hysteria, no extra trips to the shrink.

Instead, there was more assessment about what they did wrong in the past few years to cause voters to side with more Dems.

In other words, they took responsibility for their actions instead of blamestorming. If there was anything good that came out of these elections, that is certainly one thing.

The links pretty much give a good overview of why it turned out the way it did. Republicans started acting more like Democrats--ignoring the values of their constituencies, embracing more big-government initiatives.

I hate to see the Dems take more power (I had enough of their crap in the '90s), but I am happy to see democracy in action.

08 November 2006

Alaska is Still Republican!

I was reviewing my state's election results and, much to my pleasure, read that my choice for governor (Sarah Palin) got elected. Great--it'll be a breath of fresh air from Murkowski (a Repub, yeah, but one of those that makes you wish he wasn't. Lots of underhanded stuff--trying to pass oil initiatives without the consent of the legislature--you know, political sleaze).

It's early, I know, but I'm surprised the major news outlets haven't caught up on the significance of Palin's election. It's the first time Alaska has had a woman governor, and the youngest governor to date (she's about 41).

But, because she's a conservative, what sort of attention does she get? None of the accolades heaped upon her like a a certain carpetbagger got when she was elected senator to NY.

In in our State senate, some 28 seats are held by Repubs, 22 by Dems. But an closer to even mix can be a good thing.

I'm not too terribly worried about the balance of power shifting toward the dems. If they haven't learned their lessons from 2004, they'll lose it just as easily in 2012.

06 November 2006

RKBA Campus...er...bone toss? #4.5

Apart from internet connection issues (the guy through whom we get our on-ramp to the info superhighway switched over from ACS to AT&T--it hasn't been a smooth transition) and general business, I apologize for not being a little more timely in my quest to give you guys a taste of what the up-and-coming generation is saying about gun issues.

David Codrea was kind enough to send in this one from Dixie State College:

Students, teachers voice opinions on guns in school

Kind of a mixed bag. On one hand, you have the Director of Security advocating armed teachers. Why? Because it seems he understands that cops tend to be rather slow reacting to crises.

But unfortunately, like most cops, he seems to be a little out of touch with the legislative goings-on in Utah:

“There is no legislation even in the process of being passed to allow teachers to carry guns on campus in Utah,” Reid said.
Hmmmm. The folks at BYU reported something different about a month or so ago. If Dixie is private, it's within rights to set whatever policies on its grounds. But if it is State--nope, the courts ruled State law has pre-eminence over whatever policy campus wanted to enforce regarding 2A issues.

Student reactions? How about two clueless freshman?

Our first, a 'major' in general education (=hasn't decided on a major) says "I think we should wait until we have problems here." Most of Europe did that when Hitler rose to power--it didn't really work for them.

Another one, a pre-engineering freshman sees the pro's and con's (no pro's listed, interestingly enough), but says "If we can’t have guns then teachers shouldn’t be able to either." There is such a thing as a minimum age to own a handgun. The way I've seen some young idiots play with pieces of serious hardware, it's easy to justify it.

Teachers can be just as jumpy on the topic, like this history professor:

"I have never encountered violence in a high school or university; it’s completely out of principle"

He's probably never heard spoken Norwegian, either, but does that mean the language doesn't exist? Obviously, he's spent too much time going over the past to pay much attention to current events.

Winding up that article, we have one freshman showing something of a reasonable attitude: “I think that only teachers that are trained to use guns should carry guns or they should just have more cops on campus.”

I agree with the former. The latter...ehhhh...not if you really want a tuition hike.

I'm kind of curious why the Dixie paper only chose to interview freshmen. Is it a junior college?

From Washington State, I found an article that didn't focus on gun issues per se (it has an anti-violence theme in light of the Amish school shooting), but makes an oblique jab that guns are the absolute root cause for violence:

The girls died because it was his right to buy a gun.

And I got D's in Calculus because of my pencil.

The next dandy is rather dated (from May of this year) , and comes also from the Left Coast. No, not the PRC, but Seattle University. An editorial in the Spectator Online gives us the full leftist battery on 2A. I mean, it has it all--Brady! Gun show loopholes! National Center for Health stats! Looking at it from an 'international perspective!'

But this quote bothers me the most: "Despite the saber-rattling of 2nd Amendment purists, the need for reform overshadows any ideological struggle for freedom." I think it pretty much speaks for itself.

Happily, though, you do find the voices of reason if you can wade through the propaganda. Like this student from the same university, who wrote an excellent article on gun rights. Like most that lean towards supporting RKBA, it's backed up with a lot of good research, instead of relying on the left's attempts to sway others by the visceral approach.


While there are no problems with individuals choosing not to own a firearm, restricting citizens from attaining the means of protecting themselves is an unacceptable and unconstitutional act.

Gun opponents must have much more faith in their government and institutional bodies than I do, especially after witnessing the pillage of civil liberties that has occurred since the September 11th terrorist attacks. Ironically, it is Democrats – those who should be most fearful of having to fight for their civil liberties – who tend to spearhead the assault on guns.

Historically, situations of mass extermination by governments could have been solved had their citizens been armed.

Read the rest of it! I love ending a post on a positive note.