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Member since: Sun Jan 14, 2007, 02:51 PM
Number of posts: 7,981

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Defense Dept. Asks Armed Civilians to Stop Guarding Recruiters

Source: NY Times

The Defense Department on Friday asked armed civilians who have volunteered to guard military recruiting stations across the country in the wake of the mass shooting in Chattanooga, Tenn., to leave their posts.

The Pentagon said in a statement that it took the safety of its enlisted and civilian personnel “very seriously” and that Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter was reviewing recommendations to improve security at all facilities, including recruiting stations.

The presence of armed civilians, it said, might cause safety problems.

“While we greatly appreciate the outpouring of support for our recruiters from the American public, we ask that individuals not stand guard at recruiting offices as it could adversely impact our mission, and potentially create unintended security risks,” Peter Cook, the Pentagon press secretary, said. “We continue to partner with and rely on first responders for the safety of the communities where our service members live and work.”

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/25/us/defense-dept-asks-armed-civilians-to-stop-guarding-recruiters.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=second-column-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news
Posted by SecularMotion | Sat Jul 25, 2015, 06:00 AM (41 replies)

Background Checks On Gun Sales Has Major Loophole

"A vast majority of the time we get a proceed," L.E.P.D. Firearms Owner Eric Delbert said. "A percentage of the time, it comes back with a denial, there is also a good percent of the time where we hear nothing."

It comes back as "delayed." The person needs to be checked further. But the system isn't always quick. And there's a certain provision in the Brady Law.

"If we hear nothing, after three business days, then we are legally able to transfer that firearm to that person," Delbert said.

That's reportedly what happened in the case of the gunman who killed nine people in a South Carolina church.

Posted by SecularMotion | Fri Jul 24, 2015, 07:58 AM (61 replies)

Army to recruiters: Treat armed citizens as security threat

WASHINGTON — The Army has warned its recruiters to treat the gun-toting civilians gathering at centers across the country in the wake of the Chattanooga, Tenn., shooting as a security threat.

Soldiers should avoid anyone standing outside the recruiting centers attempting to offer protection and report them to local law enforcement and the command if they feel threatened, according to a U.S. Army Recruiting Command policy letter issued Monday.

Recruiters were ordered not to interact or acknowledge the armed civilians, who have been greeted by a mix of concern, indifference and gratitude by the public.

“If questioned by these alleged concerned citizens, be polite, professional and terminate the conversation immediately and report the incident to local law enforcement …,” the command advised.

Posted by SecularMotion | Thu Jul 23, 2015, 10:11 PM (18 replies)

Crackdown on culture of violence: Afghanistan bans guns… toy guns

The Afghan government has decided to launch a crackdown on the culture of violence in the country by banning guns. Not the real lethal firearms but toy guns that children play with.

The move on Tuesday comes after more than 100 children suffered eye injuries in the capital Kabul from toy weapons during the three days of Eid al-Fitr celebrations, which marked the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

The problem of toy gun-related violence is being felt not only in the troubled Middle-Eastern countries, but in the US as well. A study by Stanford University School of Medicine published last month showed that between 2010 and 2013 the number of injuries from ‘non-powder’ firearms in the US soared more than 500 percent.

In 2012 alone, more than 3,000 children were treated at US emergency departments for eye injuries from airsoft guns, BB guns, pellet guns and paintball guns, the study said.

Posted by SecularMotion | Thu Jul 23, 2015, 06:36 AM (9 replies)

The National Rifle Association's Mass Shooting Hypocrisy

After a gunman killed nine people in a historically African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina on June 17, gun safety advocates responded with calls to expand the national background check system. Just as quickly, the National Rifle Association (NRA) reacted to those calls, slamming gun safety groups for "exploiting" the tragedy for "political purposes."

One month later, another gunman killed five members of the military at a naval facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The NRA was again quick to respond, but this time claimed the incident provided proof that firearm policies on military bases must be changed to loosen the rules about service members carrying guns.

So which is it? The NRA apparently thinks it is exploitative to discuss gun violence following mass shootings -- unless, of course, the discussion is about why we should loosen gun laws. Their stance on the issue changes based on how to best advance the organization's interests.

Following the mass murder at Mother Emanuel AME in Charleston, the NRA went into its post-mass shooting standard operating procedure -- shutting down its social media accounts and refusing to speak to the press. Two days later, the NRA's media arm addressed the shooting, with NRA News host Cam Edwards opining that it was "completely inappropriate" to discuss gun policies the day after the incident, adding, "I did not receive a single email communication chastising me or complaining that we should have been talking about policy and politics as opposed to remembering the victims in Charleston."

Posted by SecularMotion | Wed Jul 22, 2015, 09:05 PM (20 replies)

Several big U.S. cities see homicide rates surge

After years of declining violent crime, several major American cities experienced a dramatic surge in homicides during the first half of this year.

Milwaukee, which last year had one of its lowest annual homicide totals in city history, recorded 84 murders so far this year, more than double the 41 it tallied at the same point last year.

Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said the mounting homicide toll in his city of 600,000 is driven by Wisconsin's "absurdly weak" gun laws – carrying a concealed weapon without a state-issued concealed carry is a misdemeanor in the Badger State – as well a subculture within the city that affirms the use of deadly violence to achieve status and growing distrust of police in some parts of the city.

Milwaukee is not alone.

Posted by SecularMotion | Wed Jul 22, 2015, 06:34 PM (13 replies)

Criminal charges in accidental shootings nonexistent

If it’s called an accident when a Louisiana child shoots himself with a parent’s gun, that parent won’t face criminal charges.

Even some states most often associated with pro-gun citizens and government — such as Texas and Florida — call those parents criminals. Louisiana does not have CAP laws, shorthand for child access prevention.

CAP laws have been implemented in 27 states and the District of Columbia. There’s no federal CAP law.

“Legislatures must ask whether they want to guide behavior in their states by imposing additional civil and criminal liability,” said Raymond Diamond, LSU Law Center professor.

Posted by SecularMotion | Wed Jul 22, 2015, 06:44 AM (3 replies)

The Mystery of Milwaukee’s ‘Human Holster’

Darrail Smith may have been a public relations nightmare for gun-rights advocates, but he was also a bizarrely loyal friend.

Last August, the state of Wisconsin granted Smith a concealed-carry license. It had to: Wisconsin is a “shall issue” state, meaning that because the 23-year-old had no felony convictions, provided evidence of training, and paid $40, he was entitled to a 5-year license. But starting in October, Smith began showing up at crime scenes at the same time as shootings went down — though he never appeared to be committing them.

In the early hours of a Friday morning, two brothers, Carrington and Marquis Smith — apparently unrelated to Darrail despite the shared last name — left a nightclub where they’d been drinking champagne and chatting up women. Darrail and two other friends, who also had been at the club, followed in another car, and the caravan stopped for late-night takeout. A short time later, a silver minivan pulled alongside Carrington and Marquis’s car at a stoplight. Its passenger door slid open, and someone inside opened fire.

Marquis returned fire and tried to drive away but crashed in front of a public library. He’d been shot in the stomach. Carrington had been hit in the leg, but told police that when he saw the Glock pistol on his wounded brother’s lap, he had to get rid of it. Carrington had been convicted of a second-degree gun felony in 2007. Knowing Darrail was licensed, Carrington grabbed the Glock from Marquis and took it to Darrail, who later told police that Carrington said, “Here’s your gun.”

Posted by SecularMotion | Tue Jul 21, 2015, 07:24 AM (15 replies)

Why Military Security Experts Know That Arming All Troops Is Not the Answer

The argument that all military service members should be armed with guns to protect themselves — proffered by GOP presidential candidates Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, and Donald Trump in the wake of the shooting deaths of four Marines and a sailor last week in Chattanooga, Tennessee — is so basic that there’s not much argument to it at all. Railing against “gun-free zones” last Friday, Trump summed the case up in this way: “This sick guy had guns and shot them down. These are decorated people. These are people who could have handled guns very easily. They would have had a good chance if they had a gun.” In making their cases, the presidential hopefuls echoed a Connecticut car repairman whose shop is near a military recruiting office, who told the Associated Press that arming its occupants made perfect sense to him. “Most of them are trained infantrymen,” the repairman asserted. “That definitely would make it a lot more safe.” They’re military, they know how to use guns, how could we not have every one of them be armed all the time, just in case?

The argument is intuitive enough for a political sound bite — and, like many sound bites, does not hold up well under fact-checking. It reflects a basic misconception about the average military member’s proficiency with guns, and it flat-out misses the reality that armed-forces installations are not “gun-free zones” by any stretch of the imagination. Indeed, the military has fairly liberal guidelines empowering its commanders to arm members to defend themselves. It’s just that those guidelines prioritize personal safety and the high likelihood of gun mishaps over statistically rare tragedies like the Chattanooga shooting.

Posted by SecularMotion | Mon Jul 20, 2015, 09:11 PM (29 replies)

Lax Gun Laws Are Becoming a National-Security Issue

Another shooting spree; another debate about American gun laws.

This time, though, it’s slightly different. Hours after Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez, a suspected homegrown Islamist terrorist, shot and killed four U.S. Marines at a Naval Reserve center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Donald Trump, who is now leading the polls in the Republican Presidential primary, seized upon the tragedy, claiming that the problem isn’t the proliferation of deadly firearms, but a lack of them in certain locales, such as the so-called “gun-free zones” at military sites.

According to news reports, Abdulazeez, a twenty-four-year-old Kuwaiti-born U.S. citizen, was armed with at least three guns, including an AK-47 assault rifle. How he got hold of these weapons wasn’t what concerned Trump, however. “Get rid of gun free zones,” he tweeted on Friday morning. “The four great marines who were just shot never had a chance. They were highly trained but helpless without guns.”

Trump was evidently referring to a Pentagon regulation, dating back to 1993, that prohibits some members of the military from carrying firearms while on base. His comments echoed those of gun enthusiasts, who highlighted, on social media, a picture of a sign prohibiting firearms that was on the door of the Chattanooga military-recruitment office where Abdulazeez reportedly opened fire before moving onto the Naval Reserve center, less than ten miles away.

Posted by SecularMotion | Mon Jul 20, 2015, 07:17 AM (12 replies)
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