Getting Women Involved

Earlier this year, as I prepared for SHOT Show 2018 coverage, I asked some of my girlfriends who own firearms or are involved in the shooting sports what they were wanting to see this year from the show.  During our conversations, an unexpected theme emerged.  In addition to the same requests for better concealed carry options, and weapons/gear that are designed to better fit a woman’s anatomy, there was a more intangible concern: the social aspect of women in shooting.  Almost all of my friends wanted three things: to know more women like themselves, ideas on how to get more involved in shooting, and to feel more included in the shooting world.

There are enough women becoming involved in the shooting sports that the NSSF felt it necessary to do an extensive study on the female shooting demographic and the NRA now has an entire section (including a TV channel) dedicated to women’s interest.  Many manufacturers make specific models of rifles (like Savage and Weatherby), shotguns (such as Syren), and handguns (such as EAA) that have been designed specifically with a woman in mind.  These companies did not simply take an existing model and then apply the “Shrink It and Pink It” (SI-PI) cosmetic makeover.  There was actual thought put into these weapons to improve the shooting experience for women.  Firearm design is not the only part of the shooting world trying to play catch-up. There are now many concealed carry options that were designed specifically with a woman in mind, including more and more in off-body carry options.  Several companies have even tackled the gear portion by designing hunting clothes, law enforcement uniforms, and backpacks, to name just a few, to fit the female body better. While many women may not be happy with the available options, many more choices are coming to market every year.  Many companies are also open to suggestions for how to improve existing designs, but changes do not happen overnight.   Continue reading

NRA Membership Dues Scheduled for Another Imminent Increase

CLICK HERE to join or renew today at discounted rates

If you are a current member who retrieved your National Rifle Association publication, such as Shooting Illustrated, American Rifleman, American Hunter, or America’s First Freedom from your mailbox, or if you visited the NRA website, you were likely greeted by the news that dues are set to increase again in the very near future.

The half-cover of the August 2018 issue of NRA magazines (sent mid-July) posits that the increase is set to take place on August 1st.

You may recall that the gun rights lobbying group’s dues also increased in 2016 in the run-up ahead of the big push during the presidential election campaign.  You may also recall that the eventual increase came only after the organization kicked the can down the road a number of times, issuing the date of the increase only to keep pushing it back several times before the inevitable price hike. While that may happen again with this increase, it also may very well not. We don’t have any insider information about that, but we will share whatever we find out as soon as we know.

Even though this is the second time in as many years that price increases have taken place, NRA touts the fact that dues increases are few and far between. The inside jacket of the magazine reads: “On August 1, 2018, NRA dues will increase for only the second time in more than 20 years.  There’s simply no other way we can stop a gun-ban takeover of the U.S. Congress and save our Second Amendment Rights. But you can beat the dues increase by renewing today.”

In addition to beating the dues increase, you can also get extra savings on your NRA membership dues here. Even after the increase, this link will provide savings off of the normal new member and renewal fees, although the prices there will automatically adjust once the increase goes into effect.

DOJ, SAF Reach Settlement in Defense Distributed Lawsuit

The Department of Justice and Second Amendment Foundation have reached a settlement in SAF’s lawsuit on behalf of Cody Wilson and Defense Distributed over free speech issues related to 3-D files and other information that may be used to manufacture lawful firearms.

SAF and Defense Distributed had filed suit against the State Department under the Obama administration, challenging a May 2013 attempt to control public speech as an export under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), a Cold War-era law intended to control exports of military articles.

Under terms of the settlement, the government has agreed to waive its prior restraint against the plaintiffs, allowing them to freely publish the 3-D files and other information at issue. The government has also agreed to pay a significant portion of the plaintiffs’ attorney’s fees, and to return $10,000 in State Department registration dues paid by Defense Distributed as a result of the prior restraint.

Significantly, the government expressly acknowledges that non-automatic firearms up to .50-caliber – including modern semi-auto sporting rifles such as the popular AR-15 and similar firearms – are not inherently military.

“Not only is this a First Amendment victory for free speech, it also is a devastating blow to the gun prohibition lobby,” noted SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “For years, anti-gunners have contended that modern semi-automatic sport-utility rifles are so-called ‘weapons of war,’ and with this settlement, the government has acknowledged they are nothing of the sort.

“Under this settlement,” he continued, “the government will draft and pursue regulatory amendments that eliminate ITAR control over the technical information at the center of this case. They will transfer export jurisdiction to the Commerce Department, which does not impose prior restraint on public speech. That will allow Defense Distributed and SAF to publish information about 3-D technology.”

Judge Brett Kavanaugh Has Earned NRA Members’ Support

NRA members can feel confident throwing their enthusiastic support behind President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. Throughout his time on the bench, Judge Kavanaugh has demonstrated deep respect for the Second Amendment as construed in Justice Antonin Scalia’s landmark decision in District of Columbia v. Heller. Moreover, his record on the Second Amendment is well established. As Second Amendment scholar and University of Denver Law Professor Dave Kopel wrote earlier this week, “No nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court has had such a detailed record on Second Amendment as does Brett Kavanaugh.”

The bulk of Judge Kavanaugh’s record on the Second Amendment comes from his 2011 dissent in Heller v. District of Columbia, or Heller II. The case concerned a challenge to Washington, D.C.’s ban on commonly-owned semi-automatic rifles and the city’s onerous firearms registration regime.

Under much constitutional precedence, courts are tasked with interpreting a law’s impact on a given right by using a system of tiered balancing tests, where they weigh the government’s interest against the right at stake. Fundamental rights are tested under a strict scrutiny standard, whereby the government has the burden of showing that a given restriction serves a compelling government interest and is the least restrictive means to further that interest. Lesser infringements are tested using intermediate scrutiny, which requires a restriction to serve an important government interest and that the means of doing so are substantially related to the interest. All laws are subject to the rational basis test, whereby a given restriction must be at least rationally related to a legitimate government purpose.   Continue reading

Too Young or Too Old… To Own a Gun?

A common theme among anti-gun extremists is what we often refer to as the “Goldilocks” approach to limiting access to firearms by law-abiding citizens. Rather than admit that the ultimate goal is to disarm all Americans, those opposed to the Second Amendment create fictional arguments about why certain types of firearms, ammunition, or even accessories should be eliminated.

In the 70s, the goal was to ban handguns. Since they could be carried concealed for personal protection, they were seen as being “too small.” That argument fell out of fashion as more and more states passed Right-to-Carry laws that recognized the right to personal protection.

One subset of the anti-handgun hysteria included inexpensive handguns (so-called “Saturday Night Specials”), which were deemed “too cheap.” When NRA and others pointed out this was an obvious attempt to disarm lower income citizens (who are often at higher risk to being victims of violent crime), the term “Saturday Night Special” faded from the gun-ban lexicon.

Another subset of the attack on handguns came with the introduction of Glocks, and other handguns that used polymers as part of their construction. These were falsely claimed to be able to pass through metal detectors and x-ray machines undetected, and, thus, “too invisible” to be screened where firearm are prohibited (think airports). Of course, this canard was quickly dispelled.

Ammunition has been attacked as “too lethal,” “too untraceable,” “too bad for the environment (lead),” “too inexpensive (so tax it),” and any number of other “toos.”

Rifles have been called “too powerful,” “too modifiable,” “too accurate,” “too similar to actual military arms,” and the list goes on.

Boiled down to its essence, after wading through myriad “too this” and “too that” arguments, the just-right “Goldilocks” of guns would likely be a break action .22 rifle, although finding acceptable lead-free ammunition might be a bit difficult. But anti-gun extremists can still claim they don’t want to ban “all” guns.

The latest approach to “Goldilocks-style Gun Control,” though, seems to be focusing less on what you can own, and focusing more on who can own firearms. And we don’t mean people with criminal records.

After the horrific tragedy that took place in Parkland, Florida, this year, age became the new battle cry for those seeking to limit gun ownership. Rather than focusing on the obvious failures at various levels of government to identify the copious warning signs exhibited by the alleged perpetrator, extremists decided to focus on the fact that law-abiding citizens are able to exercise their rights protected under the Second Amendment when they reach the age of 18. Although responsible young adults regularly leave home, join the military, get married, and begin voting at this age, the anti-gun community has decided this age is too young for one to exercise the right of gun ownership.

Eighteen-year-olds have not been prohibited from purchasing and possessing rifles and shotguns at the federal level, and in the vast majority of states, since the founding of our country. Nonetheless, because of the violent acts of one individual, we have seen an onslaught of legislation throughout the country that seeks to raise the minimum age to purchase and/or possess rifles and shotguns from 18 to 21. Because common sense has taken a back seat to raw emotionalism in today’s gun control debate, some of these efforts have seen success.   Continue reading

ATF Promotes Fireworks Safety

It’s all fun and games until someone loses a finger… Then it’s just fun.

It’s that time of year again.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is urging people to celebrate a safe Independence Day when it comes to fireworks. Handling illegal fireworks can lead to severe injuries or even death.

We want everyone to be able to safely enjoy the upcoming holiday,” said St. Paul Field Division Special Agent in Charge Kurt Thielhorn. “Pay close attention to the fireworks you are purchasing. Make sure that they are consumer-grade fireworks from a reputable dealer, and because laws vary from city to city, state to state, be sure you are following state and local regulations.

ATF works with the Consumer Products Safety Commission to prevent trafficking of fireworks and illegal explosive devices, such as M-80s, M-100s, quarter sticks, cherry bombs and silver salutes, as they are commonly referred. While these devices are sometimes confused with fireworks, they are not lawful for use by non-licensed consumers.

When considering whether a firework is legal, a key thing to look for is generic or non-labeled packaging and/or poor quality construction,” Thielhorn continued. “Illegal explosive devices meet neither safety nor quality standards of legally manufactured consumer fireworks. Friction, heat, or impact can cause these devices to unintentionally explode.”

ATF and its partners are committed to preventing fireworks related tragedies and are on the lookout for criminal elements attempting to taint legitimate business activities of fireworks industry members. The public is urged to report the use or sale of illegal fireworks or explosive devices by calling the toll-free ATF hotline at 1-888-ATF-BOMB (1-888-283-2662). The illegal manufacture, sale, transfer, receipt or transportation of explosive devices can result in federal felony and misdemeanor charges.

More information on ATF and its programs is available at www.atf.gov. Also, seek out state laws and local government ordinances for further rules and regulations related to fireworks.

Partners

Categories

Archives

R.K.B.A

Join NRA Save $10


GunLink is a proud member of NSSF