Friday, May 19, 2017

Two Bad Gun Bills Die

SB 115, the library gun free zones/open carry revenge bill has died, along with SB387, the gun violence restraining order bill (gun confiscations). Neither bill left the Assembly Judiciary Committee before their deadlines. The legislative session ends officially June 6.

For those concerned with libraries respecting the law, the lawsuit appeal is pending. The legislature has spoken (favorably, for us, after a fashion) and the judiciary will as well. We need to be patient and let the legal process finish itself out. Rome wasn’t built in a day. To those who feel “something” needs to be done, your support in opposition of the bill sent the message that Nevadan’s don’t want more gun free zones, especially with such an egregious background as SB 115 had. No other actions are needed right now.

As for SB387, we will see it again in some form in the next session in 2019 or on the ballot like with Question 1. Right now, we need to spread the word that pre-crime confiscation of guns is not the way to go and it will do nothing to disarm those who are a danger. Rather, it is empowering people to defend themselves against attackers or help those who need mental health treatment to get it. Taking due process away to “do something” to save lives is anti-American and will not make anyone safer.

I want to thank everyone for their comments and opinions submitted to the legislators. I also want to thank the senators and the assemblymen and women who voted or otherwise opposed these bills, even across the aisle. Beyond that, I invite those who hold opposing viewpoints to speak with us candidly and see our point of view.


Remember, pro-gun candidates must take a majority in 2018 or Nevada will be lost. Let’s begin turning our energy to selecting and helping to elect pro-rights candidates for our state.

Monday, May 15, 2017

SB 115 Library Gun Free Zones Must Not Become Law


SB 115 would turn libraries into gun-free zones like schools, prohibiting guns even in the parking lots. The bill was created to “trump” challenges mounted by pro-gun activists against the Las Vegas Clark County Library District (LVCCLD), which has illegally enforced a gun ban. This came to a head when a mother, legally openly carrying her gun, was improperly arrested and filed a lawsuit based on state law that prohibits local gun rules or regulations. Despite what local media report and supporters claim, this bill exists because citizens stood up for their rights. Now, unscrupulous officials, elected and unelected, want to change the law because they don’t want to have to obey the law.

Letting SB 115 pass into law would: 
  • Create a chilling effect on civil rights by rewarding officials who change a the law to avoid complying with it.
  • Show the state has little interest in enforcing state firearm preemption laws.
  • Provide no safety benefit and put law-abiding Nevadan library patrons at risk for violence.
  • Encourage the Democrat-led erosion of Nevada’s right to bear arms.
  • Allow the officials involved to escape responsibility for their illegal actions. 

Open carry in a library?

Yes, state law bans licensed concealed carry in public buildings (government buildings) where signs or metal detectors are posted at each public entrance. Open carry is not prohibited. If one wants to carry a firearm legally in a library, they must do so openly. State legal experts agree. Until the 1990s, concealed carry was generally demonized, whereas open carry was constitutionally protected.

Where this bill come from?

For nearly a decade, LVCCLD has illegally prevented open carry in its libraries. Many incidents have been recorded of legally armed citizens, minding their own business, being kicked out. The library bureaucrats made their illegal policy without a vote by the library trustees, thus breaking another law.

Citizens petitioned the district and trustees to remove the illegal ban, but the district continued to break the law. After enhanced state preemption of firearm laws was passed in 2015, allowing the option to sue for violations, LVCCLD was sued in 2016, but the case was lost in the pre-trial phase. Most preemption suits nationwide are won on appeal.

SB 115 would circumvent the preemption argument by prohibiting guns at libraries totally, just like at schools. This way, no lawsuit under preemption would work. LVCCLD officials are afraid that without SB 115, they will be sued again and lose.

What do the supporters claim is need for this bill?

Senator Denis asserted that he feels earlier legislation mistakenly left libraries out of the law. As the above context and quote (below) from the Assemblywoman show, Denis’ explanation is an excuse and probably a lie.

If Senator Denis meant the “no weapons in schools” law, libraries have never been considered like schools and no discussion was had before now. If Senator Denis meant that the state preemption law reform should have exempted libraries, why didn’t he propose a bill to amend the respective preemption laws? Denis voted “yes” on one version of the preemption laws, 2015’s SB 240, which did not exempt libraries. If there was a mistake then, why didn’t he try to correct it or vote against the bill?

There wasn’t an “error” in preemption. LVCCLD doesn’t want preemption to apply to them. Emily Dickinson wrote “Tell all the truth but tell it slant,” and in this sense, Denis lied via not telling the whole truth when he stated he felt schools were “left out,” if indeed he felt that way.

The bill’s co-sponsor and former LVCCLD trustee, Assemblywoman Shannon Bilbray-Axelrod, admitted to local media that pursuing a legislative fix to the gun ban protest problem would be a priority. So yes, by their own admission, SB 115 is directly because of the open carry challenge.

“I think it’s going to be something we’re going to have to take up in the Legislature to make that distinction. I think it was a complete oversight.” (source)

What is state preemption and how does it apply?

State preemption of firearm laws prohibits any political or government entity other than the legislature from making gun regulations, except for unsafe discharge. The law specifically applies to cities, counties, and towns, but also gives only the legislature authority to make gun regulations. This keeps all state laws uniform and avoids someone unintentionally violating a rule when traveling outside the area they are familiar with.

LVCCLD claims that since library districts aren’t explicitly included that they can make rules that prohibit guns. NRA lobbyist Dan Reed pointed out that if true, a special “gun ban” district could be made and make all sorts of anti-gun laws because the statute doesn’t specifically mention special districts like libraries.

Statements made by LVCCLD officials and the Senator himself indicate they are aware that state preemption does apply to them and they are afraid of losing another lawsuit. Their defense in court was that preemption does apply and got the lawsuit dismissed, partially on those grounds. So if preemption doesn’t apply to library districts, why the need for this bill?

Who needs a gun in the library?

One could ask this same question about a school with the response being a litany of school shootings that may have been prevented by someone shooting back. In fact, a few school shootings have been deterred or stopped by good guys with guns. If guns aren’t needed at the library, then why does LVCCLD hire armed security guards? Surely if citizens don’t need guns, security doesn’t either.

No one knows when or where violence will strike. It could be a disgruntled employee, a random attack, or ordinary criminal violence. It can also happen outside the library. Many open carriers cannot afford the training and fees for a concealed weapon permit, so they have no choice but to carry openly. Since they choose to protect themselves in public, why should they be forced to decide between going to the library unarmed or not going at all?

What makes a library such a special place that guns should be forbidden there? If mass shootings occur in churches and schools, there is nothing sacred or special about a library. Legally armed citizens do not manipulate their firearms in public or leave them in reach of children and neither has there ever been an recorded act of violence by a legally armed Nevadan in a library here.

Without evidence of legally armed citizens causing a problem, why is a ban needed? And with the context of all the illegal behavior of LVCCLD, should we really excuse everything they’ve done wrong by passing this law?

What about the parking lot exemptions?

The proposed parking lot exemption was proposed because opponents of the bill pointed out that those dropping off books or otherwise using library parking lots would be affected, as the law in question prohibits firearms any part of the property. This is a cop out, not a good thing.

The exemption is meant as a feel-good measure to overcome objections without actually doing anything. Schools will not create a pro-gun parking lot policy and one cannot trust libraries like LVCCLD to make fair policy in favor of gun owners. On the other hand, should the exemption become law, it would be a good start for parents and students to lobby for parking lot firearm exemption policies on campus.


SB 115 cannot be allowed to become law. A gun free zone is a killing zone and bureaucrats should never be rewarded for breaking the law.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Senator Denis Introduces Campus Carry Lite Amendment to SB 115

Remember SB 115, the library gun free zone/open carry revenge bill? Well, the Assembly Judiciary Committee held its hearing on the bill Tuesday, May 10th. Guess what came out of it? A Democrat who supports campus carry! Earlier, we predicted this as a possible outcome.

Senator Denis’ proposed an amendment which amounts to campus carry lite. Under his amendment, it would be legal at many schools, college/universities, libraries, etc. to openly carry or carry concealed in the parking lot or have a gun in your car. That’s right; Senator Denis approves of citizens having guns in plain sight on campus. Basically, what his amendment does far surpasses SB 102-the dead parking lot exemption bill from Republican Senator Settlemyer which only decriminalized guns in locked or occupied cars. Under Senator Denis' amendment, schools, colleges/universities, and libraries would have a blank check to be as pro-gun in the parking lots as they wanted.

One of the major objections to SB 115 was regarding books drop-offs or taxi and rideshare drivers inadvertently breaking the law by going into a library parking lot. The caveat is that such a policy would be discretionary and creates an illusion of a solution. Denis’ intended “checkmate” to overcome these objections back into basically the same problem he faced before. Libraries could easily ban such conduct if they wanted, and libraries making up the rules as they go is the whole problem here.


The first problem is that the policy to create the exemption is not mandatory, meaning that a library wouldn’t have to a parking lot exemption at all. Even if they did, it could be as narrow or broad as they liked. If libraries wouldn’t follow the law now, do you trust them to make an exemption to protect you now?

This is a cop-out from a mandatory parking lot exemption because Denis’ made a huge mistake in tying libraries to schools. He can’t make a mandatory exemption to library only parking lots because it would make him a hypocrite on his alleged reasoning of the “need” for SB 115. If he applies it equally, as he is claiming he is trying to do with his law, he creates de facto campus carry. As this bill stands, many pro-gun and rural schools, libraries, etc. could very easily make very liberal parking lot carry policies allowing even open carry.

If this passes as-is, it will lead to more and more schools and etc. adopting pro-gun policies, slowly bringing down the wall of resistance to true campus carry. Does Senator Denis really want to be known as the guy who got the campus carry ball rolling in Nevada? Even if he amends his amendment, he falls into one of the traps we’ve outlined before. It’s a no-win situation for Democrats.

Second, this amendment goes against the whole idea of state preemption of firearm laws, which has been in effect since the 1980s, that is a patchwork of policies are a bad idea. Optional policies, the terms of which can be broad or narrow and set individual, are a can of worms.
Without extensive prior research, there would be no telling if it is legal to cross that threshold from the street or not. These “policies” adopted could vary so widely that any supposed “advantages” may be meaningless.

The amendment raised questions as to how such a policy would be implemented. Will a library district exempt some branches and not others? Will certain schools or school districts be okay with guns in the parking lot? What if the Henderson libraries ban guns in parking lots, but LVCCLD does not? How many citizens could accurately tell you what district a library belongs in? And who will oversee the policies to see they are fairly implemented? The LVCCLD board of trustees totally ignored its administrators flagrant violation of the law.

If we cannot trust LVCCLD to obey state law in the first place—to the extent they try to re-write it altogether to justify their crimes—how can we trust them to implement a fair policy? All they had to do was acknowledge the fact that open carry is legal in a public building and leave it at that, but instead, at every opportunity, they chose to do the wrong thing. With this kind of track record, they have shown they are unworthy of discretion, not to mention there is no legitimate need for this bill.

Once again I remind the reader that SB 115 exists because citizens dared challenge LVCCLD’s illegal ban on legally openly carried firearms. SB 115 would set a horrible precedent that would encourage government officials to violate laws they disagree with, then pass laws to condone their behavior once citizens challenge the law. In a democratic and constitutional society, this amounts to tyranny. Any statesman or jurist of repute cannot allow this behavior. Today, it might be gun free zones in libraries. Tomorrow, it could be anything you can imagine.

At the very least, should the worst come to pass, those in rural counties or with right-minded principals and trustees might have Senator Denis to thank for campus carry lite.

The bill is up for a work session next Tuesday, March 16. Learn the history behind the SB 115 and the illegal activities of LVCCLD. You can use the email links below to email members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee.


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Question 1 Blame Game About the Governorship

Attorney General Adam Laxalt
The anti-gun machine is hard at work trying to blame Attorney General Adam Laxalt for the failure of Question 1; the anti-gun "background check" initiative that would have banned private gun sales. In an editorial in the notoriously leftist Las Vegas Sun, an unnamed editorial writer, probably part of, or at least well-connected to, Bloomberg Inc. gun control, is trying to blame Laxalt for the initiative supporters own mistakes. This isn't about guns; it's about the governorship. 

As you will recall, the attorney general determined that Question 1 could not be implemented because it required the private sale background checks to be run through the federal NICS system, which is run by the FBI. The FBI told Nevada via the attorney general that since Nevada, by legislation, chose to establish its own Point-of-Sale (POS) contact center in-state for gun background checks, that the FBI is not responsible for running Nevada's Question 1 mandated sales. Some states do split long gun and handgun background checks along state and Federal lines, but none split private and retail sales that way. In short, the FBI will not run the background checks as they are not being paid for it and a Nevada voter initiative cannot force the federal government to do anything.

The FBI refused to be part of Question 1; Laxalt only asked the question and thus the anti-gunner's blame. The anti-gun attorneys, more than likely closely affiliated with the Bloomberg anti-gun groups that have been pushing this law, state by state, made a serious error. They failed to check with the FBI before crafting the text of the law to confirm the FBI would participate. The alleged reason the federal system was chosen was because it is free; supporters feared that the initiative would be defeated if gun buyers had to pay for their own background checks, which is crap because dealers do and the initiative allowed them to charge a transfer fee for having to do the paperwork and make the phone call. Those screaming for a "fix" are the ones that screwed up.

All Laxalt did was uphold the time-honored principle that if one cannot comply with a law or find an alternative to exercise a right, the law is unenforceable. What the frankly stupid crafters of this law did was create a Catch-22; citizens can't buy or sell privately without background checks, but they can't get private background checks in compliance with state law. Laxalt pointed out that well-established case law said "You can't do that." If his opinion was incorrect; why haven't the Bloombergites sued to have it implemented? The reason is, Laxalt was entirely correct and the anti-gunners were wrong. Case law is on our side.

Returning to the blame game, leftists and the anti-gun machine is trying to blame Attorney General Laxalt because he is a strong conservative candidate for governor. Since the anti-gun and Democrat election machines are all part of the same game, opponents of Laxalt want to try to hang the anti-gunnner's failure around the neck of the wrong man. Since Bloomberg Inc. can't admit they made a huge mistake and wasted upwards of $20 million dollars, they are trying to leverage their failure into sinking a Republican candidate. The anti-gun and leftist groups are trying to blame the victim.

The Sun's editorial exhorts Laxalt or "someone" with power to force the alleged mandate through. "Leave no stone unturned. Pursue all viable options. Figure. It. Out." In other words, they want the legal and legislative processes ignored to fix their mistake. Break the law to enforce the law. Madness. What they would like someone to do is to force all private sales to go through the state system in violation of what Question 1 explicitly requires or force all private sales to stop.

Democrats do have the power to implement the fix, but they refuse. Question 1 came up because Governor Sandoval vetoed the legislature's private gun sale ban in 2013. A ballot initiative is hard to overcome--it's set in stone for three years. If the Democrats were serious about fixing it, they would have proposed a legislative fix. They could require Nevada to switch to the FBI system entirely or pass an enforceable duplicate version of the law changing the requirement from the federal to the state system. But Democrats and anti-gunners know they are on thin ice. Sandoval would certainly veto such a bill as he did before. Democrats barely hold a majority and cannot override a veto without senators crossing party lines. 

On top of that, they know, despite their lies, that Question 1 passed with a slim margin of support, only about 9,000 more "yes" votes and only succeeding in Clark County. In every other county, Question 1 failed. Looking demographically at the state, where Clark County is an urban area filled with Californian expats and minorities that lean Democrat, it is not surprising that these folks who are unfamiliar with gun laws could be swayed by a massive campaign of lies and misinformation. $20 million bought something far less than a mandate.

This is like Republicans saying that the Anti-Minority Initiative should be implemented, the 14th Amendment be damned, because 50.45% of Nevadan's voted yes to disenfranchise certain races, then blaming the attorney general for daring to uphold established legal principles. With less than 1% of the vote, Question 1 was hardly a mandate. You don't shove something down the public's throat that half the voters opposed.

It's time to listen to the 548,732 disenfranchised voters and ignore the anti-gunners who are making this an issue to torpedo Laxalt's upcoming campaign. If Democrats win the governorship in 2018, Nevada will be lost and begin its transformation into California East. No one will be left to stop the bevy of unsupported, anti-gun laws that will be crafted without abandon. If Nevada is to remain the state we've known, the only option is to vote for Laxalt and Republicans.

-GC

Friday, April 28, 2017

Glock Creates "New" Model on the Cheap

Glock introduced its “Summer Special” modifications to the Generation 4 models 17 and 19, which include steel sights (versus the standard plastic factory ones), forward slide serrations, and an extended slide release. It’s a half generation like the earlier release of the law enforcement only 17M/19M series pistols. Unlike the M series guns, which have no finger groves on the front of the grip, an ambidextrous slide release, and a flared magazine well (among other features), these “Summer Specials” are modifications on the cheap.

Basically, all Glock did was cut some of their famous slide serrations into the front of the slide and slap on an aftermarket slide release that most of us have already installed. It’s a cheap modification for them because it requires no changes to the slide. Standard Gen 4 frames can have a new release and slide slipped on in seconds. It costs a lot more to design, test, and manufacture new frames, but very little to do what they did here.

Nothing innovative here, just relatively standard modifications that have been done by owners for years. It’s an easy and safe way to introduce new features for the rumored Gen 5 we might see at SHOT Show next year. Of course, the gun blogosphere said that about this year’s show. Likewise, the M series was probably less than ready for prime time (there are reports of teething troubles), but it was likely rushed to guarantee the FBI contract. The M series probably hasn’t been released to the public because of law enforcement orders getting priority and many features will be incorporated in the Gen 5 series.

Rumors circulated on the internet that the single stack .380 Glock 42 was intended to float the design before debuting the long anticipated and coveted single stack 9mm Glock 43. For a very long time, many in the shooting public wanted a single stack version of the Glock 26, but thinner for concealed carry. Until the 43 came out, one year apart, much of the market for single-stack 9mm pistols went to the Shield, XDs 3.3, and Ruger LC9. The theory goes that since the market would absolutely crucify Glock if it introduced a dysfunctional single stack 9mm, the 42 was meant to work the kinks out with producing a flop like the Remington R51 did. Or you could just say that Gaston was just looking to make a buck off the fanboys who had to buy a 42 and 43.

The “Summer Special” series is most likely something of the later; it’s a way to sell fanboys a “new” Glock model and get some of the aftermarket cash into corporate pockets. On one hand, it’s nice to see Glock responding to what the market is requesting, but the delay in bringing it to market is inexplicable. Still, I would not be surprised if we see the new slide release and slide style appear in a M series frame as the Generation 5.

Olive drab versions of the “G17, G19, G26 and G34 in Gen3 and Gen4 along with the G43” will be released as well.

Another interesting statement is Glock “will also begin production of pistols with factory-installed night sights. … The models available with factory-installed night sights are the G17 Gen4, G19 Gen4, G42 and G43.” Does this mean factory night sights will become standard over the current plastic white-U sights?


You can get your new Glock beginning June 1. The Firearm Blog has some good shots from the NRA Annual Meeting floor.

-GC

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Wildly Successfuly Women's Annie Oakley Shooting Program: Opening Night


The sun was beginning its descent behind the mountains to the West as we made that long drive up the hill going North on Decatur.  The nearly 80-degree day was giving way to dusk and the cooler temperatures of a springtime evening in Las Vegas.  As we climbed the road to the Clark County Shooting Complex, the air grew even cooler.  We were excited and optimistic about what the evening had in store for us.  Months of preparation for the ladies of the Nevada Firearms Coalition was about to pay off.  The ladies who volunteered were preparing to host the inaugural Annie Oakley Shooting event.  Among them was my friend Megan, a former “student” of mine who has shown remarkable progress in marksmanship and safety during our semi-regular range trips.  When she was first told about this program, she volunteered to take the RSO class without hesitation for the sole purpose of volunteering with this program.

After many meetings, training sessions, dry runs and NRA Range Safety Officer classes, everyone was going to put their training and knowledge to good use.  The Annie Oakley program is geared towards female first-time shooters, led and instructed by experienced female shooters.  The belief is that women will feel more comfortable being taught by other women, coached and supported along the way by other women.  No scoffing men allowed.  Girls only.

We approached the gate to the Shooting Complex and were greeted by…a man?  Yes, there were some of us male volunteers (your author also carries the dreaded Y Chromosome) but we were purely in place for logistical support.  Directing traffic and greeting people.  Collecting liability waivers. Cleaning up the classroom.  The bread and butter of the program, the classroom instruction and coaching on the range, is handled by the ladies.  After a brief exchange, we continued the drive up the hill, passing several other male volunteers directing traffic.

We arrived at the Hunter Safety Education building at the end of the road and were amazed to see several dozen cars already there and a line forming outside the building.  My eyes widened as I realized that there were a whole lot of people interested in this program.  I couldn’t believe there were so many people there already, since the event wasn’t scheduled to start for another hour!  We parked and went to work.  I assumed my post in the parking lot directing traffic.  Over the course of the next 30 minutes I watched a steady stream of cars follow the same road I had just traveled.  The parking lot was full and people began parking along the side of the road, in the gravel, double parking, triple parking, it didn’t matter.  With a half an hour to go before the program would begin, the line was already wrapped around the building.  The classroom filled to capacity and disappointed prospective students were turned away to return for another session an hour later or on another day.  Still another 15 minutes to go before class started and it was already filled to capacity.

I spent the next hour apologizing to people for the class being full and encouraging them to stay for the next classroom session.  I answered a myriad of questions from “When is the program held again?” (Every Tuesday night) to “How do I get a CCW permit?” Once the traffic situation died down, I moved inside to help check people in for the second classroom session.  I was amazed yet again to see that the line for the second class was just as long as the first class.  We went to work collecting waivers and handing out the punch card for the ammo.  The first class exited and made their way down to the range as the classroom filled with our second group of eager ladies ready to learn to shoot.

I stood in the doorway of the classroom and listened to the instructors, Sandy and Alex, as they went through the basics.  The cardinal rules of gun safety.  Dominant eye and sight picture.  Loading a magazine.  Everything you would expect from a basic pistol class.  I looked around the classroom and noticed the many different demographics represented.  All age groups, daughters under 18, mothers, grandmothers, sisters and friends.  Different races, different cultures and no doubt different backgrounds and life experiences.  They all came together for a common purpose and were eager to learn.

I moved outside to do some paperwork and get some fresh air.  While sitting at one of the picnic tables outside, I could hear the familiar popping sound of .22 handguns coming from the range.  I looked over towards the bright lights on the range and could see people on the firing line.  The first group had taken the range and was well on their way to learning how to shoot safely.

Disappointingly, there was little coverage by our local media.  Carla Wade from KTNV Channel 13 News was the only reporter I’m aware of who came to the classroom to cover the event.  She gave impressive and positive coverage of the program, which aired during the 11pm news the same night.  The story and video can be found at their website.

Courtesy: T. Fredkin, Facebook
Based solely on the attendance of the first week’s event, this program is going to be a resounding success for the Nevada Firearms Coalition.  There appears to be a great deal of demand for such a program and even reading comments on social media seems to be generating quite a bit of buzz among those who plan to attend.  People seem genuinely excited and I believe this class will fill a much-needed void. People want to learn about guns, but don’t feel comfortable enough to jump right into a CCW or a basic pistol type class.  I even had several ladies approach me and tell me they felt like they should take the classroom portion again.  There is no shame in that and I think people should learn all they can however they can.  I encourage every lady who has ever thought about shooting a gun (and even those who haven’t.  Why not?) to attend this program.  The knowledge you gain is empowering and could prove to be invaluable to you and your family.

-John

The Annie Oakley Women's Shooting Program is for women only (sorry dudes) and is a free program provided by the Nevada Firearms Coalition Foundation for women who would like to learn how to shoot and handle guns safely. No registration is required. Eye and ear protection (shooting glasses and ear muffs/plugs) is available for a nominal fee.

The program is held each Tuesday night 7-9 PM at the Clark County Shooting Complex (Rifle/Pistol Center), 11357 N. Decatur Blvd. Las Vegas, NV.

Contact leader Jeannette via email