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September 11th Attacks: 15 Years Later

BrancoRemember911It really does not seem like it has been a decade and a half since 19 savages hijacked four airplanes and used them to murder nearly 3,000 innocent Americans, injure 6,000 more, and cause lingering physical health issues for an estimated 18,000 more in addition to the mental and emotional hurt that the attacks caused for all Americans and our friends around the world.

It is hard to believe that there are now people who are old enough to drive or go see a dirty movie who weren’t even born yet when the towers fell, or when the seat of our national defense was struck, or when a handful of brave Americans made the monumentally difficult decision to sacrifice their own lives and the lives of a comparatively small number of others to prevent more inevitably massive casualties.

I am actually writing this piece more than a month in advance of the 15th anniversary of the attacks and, even as I do, I possess a mix of sadness, anger, and deep, intensely burning hatred for the enemy who struck a blow on America that day.  The same enemy who continues to strike similar blows on a smaller scale around the world and, indeed, right here on our own soil after either being welcomed with open arms or simply exposed to the sickness of radical Continue reading

Smith & Wesson Completes Acquisition of Crimson Trace

Smith_Wesson_2Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation announced Tuesday that it has completed the acquisition of Crimson Trace that we reported on previously for $95 million. Crimson Trace now will operate as Smith & Wesson’s newly established Electro-Optics Division.

The signing of the definitive purchase agreement for the acquisition was announced on July 25, 2016, and a copy of that announcement can be found here.

Smith & Wesson will discuss the transaction during its fiscal first quarter earnings conference call, scheduled for today, which will also be available via webcast.  Speakers on the conference call will include James Debney, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Jeffrey D. Buchanan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.  The conference call and webcast will begin at 5:00 pm Eastern. Those interested in listening to the conference call can call directly at 844-309-6568 and enter conference code 59745084. The conference call audio webcast can also be accessed live and for replay on the company’s website under the Investor Relations section.

The Remington R51 Returns

2.5 Years After First Try, Remington Re-Launches Their Compact 9mm

R51It has been a bit of a rough ride for the Remington R51.  Two and a half years ago, the 200-year-old arms maker launched the R51 at SHOT Show 2014.  By July of that year, Remington had ditched the R51 project citing “performance issues” and scrubbed any mention of the R51 from the product lineups in their catalogs and online.

In their “oops” memo, Remington stated that “anyone who purchased an R51 may return it and receive a new R51 pistol, along with two additional magazines and a custom Pelican case.” They also thanked customers for their patience and promised that “the new R51 will be of the same exceptional quality as our test pistols” which, to hear them tell it, performed flawlessly.

Now, more than two years after the recall, the R51 is back and, hopefully, better than ever.  Remington announced the official re-launch of the R51 today with the following statement:

Because the R51 is so unlike any other handgun on the market, it posed unforeseen challenges in manufacturing when it was first introduced in 2014. Since then, our engineers have worked tirelessly to address the issues and extensively test the solutions, and we’re proud to say the redesigned R51 surpasses even our initial expectations.

Remington claims that the pistol has now been re-engineered from the ground up and thoroughly tested (again) to deliver “ultimate reliability.”  The 7+1 capacity R51 is supposedly designed to get on target faster and point more intuitively than other subcompact pistols on the market and thanks to the barrel and recoil spring configuration, have 25% less muzzle flip.

Updated features in the rebooted R51 include a precision-built fast-reset polymer trigger, a more aggressive and durable extractor design, enhanced recoil spring – which were among the issues with the initial pistol.

Do We Really Have a Gun Problem? The Facts Don’t Lie.

Forget the Rhetoric.  Let’s Take a Look at the Cold, Hard Numbers

HomicideMortalityCDCEvery time some violent madman, such as the islamic terrorist who recently killed a club full of people in Orlando, happens to use a firearm to carry out their perverted mission, the anti-gun left intone their mantra of “you never want a serious crisis to go to waste” and spool up their rhetoric machine to incite fear and hand-wringing among the masses while they try to use emotion to push for new legislation.  “Something must be done about guns!,” they shout.  “Ban ‘assault rifles’!”  “We have a serious gun problem!”  But do we really?  The short answer is no, and here’s why…

People die.  That is how life works; it eventually draws to an end as the curtains close and we shuffle off this mortal coil.  When people die, it is from a variety of causes.  If you are into the macabre, try to catch some reruns of 1,000 Ways to Die – we will only be discussing this in the abstract.

FACT: More people have been shot and killed in Chicago so far this year than were killed by all types of rifles in all of 2014.   

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Facebook Nixes Florida GOP Candidate’s AR-15 Giveaway

GregEversAR15FacebookA Republican running for Congress in the southern U.S. state of Florida set out to host a contest to give away an AR-15 rifle to someone who lives in his district, but Facebook has since shut it down.

Greg Evers, who is running for the open seat in Florida’s 1st district in the state’s western panhandle, announced the contest Sunday, a week after a gunman in Orlando, Florida killed 49 people.  The mass shooting brought calls for increased controls on who can buy a gun, but sensible Americans, like Evers, have said terror attacks show the need to preserve a person’s right to obtain the weapons for defense.

“With terrorism incidents on the rise, both at home and abroad, protecting our constitutional rights has never been more important,” he said. “With all that’s happening in the world today, I’ve never felt stronger about the importance of the second amendment in protecting our homeland than I do now.”

Evers tried offering contest entries to people who liked his Facebook page and share one of his posts and plans to pick a winner for the AR-15 rifle on July 4.  However, less than two days into the contest, Facebook pulled the posts and Evers posted the following update:   Continue reading

ATF Releases U.S. Firearm Trace Data for 2015

BATFE LogoThe Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) released today firearm trace data for all individual U.S. states and territories for calendar year 2015. Trace information provides investigative leads to law enforcement and can link a suspect to a firearm in a criminal investigation. Firearm traces also help identify potential firearm traffickers, and detect in-state, interstate and international firearm trafficking patterns, including the sources and types of crime guns.

ATF’s Violent Crime Analysis Branch produces this annual report using trace information compiled at ATF’s National Tracing Center (NTC), the nation’s only crime gun tracing facility. The NTC provides critical information that assists domestic and international law enforcement agencies to solve firearm crimes, detect firearm trafficking patterns, and identify trends with respect to intrastate, interstate and international movement of crime guns.

In 2015, there were 190,538 firearms recovered and traced back to a purchaser in the United States, an increase of more than 20,000 firearms recovered and traced in the previous year. The majority of the traces involved 9 mm (more than 55,000) and .22 caliber (more than 35,000) firearms. The top three types of firearms traced last year were pistols (more than 150,000 traces), revolvers (more than 44,000 traces) and rifles (more than 41,000 traces).

The released firearm trace data offers a description of firearms recovered and traced in each state along with the source states of the firearms recovered.

In addition to the number of recovered and traced firearms per state, the report includes recovery location information, the average time it took from when a firearm was purchased to when it was recovered in a crime, and the criminal offense associated with the firearm.

To access the complete 2015 firearms trace report, visit ATF’s online statistics page at https://www.atf.gov/about/firearms-trace-data-2015.

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