Is there momentum in Congress for a new automatic weapons ban? Certainly, in the wake of the Tucson shootings, some anti-gun legislators vowed to restore the 10-year ban on select semiautomatic firearms and "high-ammo clips" that expired in 2004.
The first knee-jerk reactions surfaced immediately in the aftermath of the Jan. 8 shootings. Since then, the impetus appears to have waned.
Perhaps Sen. Richard Lugar's experience is the most illustrative. On Jan. 14, Lugar told Bloomberg Television’s Al Hunt that the AWB ban should be restored. The next day, the Indiana Republican said that's not what he said. Or, at least, he might have said what he said, but what he said was not what he meant.
In the wake of the Tucson shootings, CBS News and CNN/Opinion Research Corp. -- among other organizations -- conducted polls asking Americans about their views on gun control. The CBS poll results indicated "there is no significant change in public views on the issue of gun control and gun rights." According to the CNN/ORC poll, 69 percent said they "have not changed their opinion" that more gun control is needed.
Then, on Jan. 18, Mayors Against Illegal Guns announced the results of a poll it commissioned which, essentially, confirmed the same results but, somehow, indicate that Americans want and need more gun control. The survey was conducted jointly by Momentum Analysis, a polling firm with Democratic clients, and American Viewpoint, a polling firm with Republican clients. The consensus is that "both gun owners and the general public support stronger measures to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and other potentially dangerous individuals."
Two vital components to any rational discussion are missing in the open carry debate in Florida: Context and perspective.
Floridians who exclusively rely on their local TV news and newspapers for information are being led to believe that if an open-carry bill introduced in December is passed, their state will be out-of-step with the rest of the nation as a bastion of "gun nuts."
Nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, Florida is among only eight states that don't allow open carry in some form or another.
A recent column posted on ammoland.com warns that Senate Democrats may attempt to pull a procedural coup that could remove protections that give the minority party the ability to withstand the "tyranny of the majority."
According to the column, the plan is for Vice President Joe Biden, serving in his capacity as Senate President, to rule that the new Senate that convened on Jan. 5 is not a “continuing body” and "therefore has no rules -- other than whatever 53 Democrats and Independents might unilaterally adopt."
The good news is New Jersey Republican Gov. Chris Christie granted Brian Aitken clemency. The bad news, many say, is that Christie, didn't give Aitken the full pardon necessary to put New Jersey's draconian gun laws on trial.
Aitken, 27, a CEO of a digital magazine in Mount Laurel, N.J., in 2009 moved to New Jersey from Colorado, where he had legally purchased two handguns. For his "crime" of properly transporting legally purchased firearms, he was sentenced to seven years in state prison for unlawful possession of one of the handguns, and for unlawful possession of legally purchased ammunition that is illegal in New Jersey.
The back and forth banter surrounding the horrific shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and the other victims of the Safeway massacre in Arizona by alleged gunman Jared L. Loughner has followed a depressingly familiar pattern.
Partisans on both ends of the political spectrum have seized on the tragedy to beat each other about the head and score points. (“Sarah Palin’s map did it!” “No, he was a pot-smoking commie!”) This has included from the left-wing renewed calls for gun control of all sorts.
If you actually know a thing or two about guns and shooting you could do yourself a huge favor and shut off your computer for a couple of weeks to avoid the arguments (and I’m being generous with that word here) put forth by the crop of self-appointed experts and pundits about what happened and which laws should be put in place to keep a similar shooting from occurring again.
The Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights guarantees citizens of the United States the right to own and bear firearms. Because local governments were getting confused by this simple reality, in 2006 the Ohio General Assembly passed an ordinance holding that only federal or state regulations can limit Second Amendment rights in the Buckeye State.
HB347, the preemption law, became effective in March of 2007. It replaced a patchwork of varied and confusing local rules with "uniform laws throughout the state regulating the ownership, possession, purchase, other acquisition, transport, storage, carrying, sale, or other transfer of firearms, their components, and their ammunition."
Nevertheless, the city of Cleveland objected to this simple reality and filed suit, claiming the state ordinance essentially eliminated its own gun laws. Cleveland found a sympathetic panel of judges in the Cuyahoga County Court of Appeals, which overturned the state law, stating it violated the city's home-rule rights and the single-subject provision of the constitution.