Thursday, June 16, 2011

Dane County Executive Apparently Doesn't Know the Law

Earlier today I was contacted by a TV reporter who asked if I had heard about Dane County's attempt to pass a resolution to prohibit concealed weapons in all county-owned buildings, e.g., the City-County Building, zoo buildings, the Alliant Energy Center, and so on.

You can read about this proposal By clicking here

It seems clear to me that if the Dane County Board passes such a resolution it would be in violation of the state's 15-year old firearms preemption statute.  Such a resolution would have no legal effect and be unenforceable according to Wisconsin Statute 66.0409 which states:

66.0409 (2) Except as provided in subs. (3) and (4), no political subdivision
may enact an ordinance or adopt a resolution that regulates
the sale, purchase, purchase delay, transfer, ownership, use, keeping,
possession, bearing, transportation, licensing, permitting,
registration or taxation of any firearm or part of a firearm, including
ammunition and reloader components, unless the ordinance or
resolution is the same as or similar to, and no more stringent than,
a state statute.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Last minute attempts to add stupid amendments to WI Concealed Carry Bill

The Wisconsin Senate is scheduled to debate and vote on SB-93, the Concealed Weapons Bill.  Not unexpectedly, many amendments to the bill have been proposed in a last ditch effort to make concealed carry a ridiculous farce, and an insult, to law-abiding citizens of Wisconsin.  SB-93 originally was a reasonably streamlined 19-page bill, which has now grown to a bloated 60-page monstrosity. 

Let's take a look at the new amendments that have been proposed for consideration:

1)  Replace the current bill's Florida-like broad training requirement with a specific.  This amendment was introduced by 21st Senate District Republican Van Wanggaard, whom, it seems, took the required course to receive a Minnesota pistol permit.  Wanggaard apparently thinks, for whatever reason, that Wisconsin' permit process should include a similar required course.  This is despite the fact that there is no demonstrated benefit to anyone from requiring such a course, except for the handful of gun trainers who will profit by having a monopoly on providing the specific course.  Requiring the development and approval of a particular course of instruction will likely slow down the entire process of establishing concealed carry in Wisconsin, plus it will create a bottleneck as classes will fill quickly and will limited to only those offered by a small list of approved instructors.  All this for no demonstrable increase in public safety. 

2)  Adding a list of private property where handguns will not be allowed by law.  In other words, the legislature is substituting it's judgment for the judgment of private property owners, who are apparently too stupid to make their own choice whether to allow guns.  We all know that churches, day cares, hospitals and other places never have crimes committed on their premises.  We know that employees and visitors to such places never have stalkers or unstable ex's after them. 

3)  No guns allowed in domestic violence shelters.  Well that makes a lot of sense!  After all, someone who has violently abused their partner will automatically refrain from going after that partner once they are inside a domestic violence shelter protected by a statute and a sign on the door.

4)  No guns specifically in the State Capitol building.  Hmmm, I seem to recall quite a few death threats being made against legislators and the governor recently.  Okay, if you maintain the current weapons screening and police security the legislators who feel threatened may be relatively safe inside the capitol.  They do, however leave the building to go home, to go to meetings, to have lunch.  Should they be held hostage inside the building for the rest of their term?  Wait a minute, maybe there is a bright side to this amendment.....

5)  Prohibit carrying guns on the external grounds of government buildings.  Of course!  We know that criminals have huge respect for imaginary lines!  Just like we know that no crimes ever happen in those 1000-foot "gun free school zones."

6)  No guns during "Special events" on government grounds.  It would be nice to see the actual language of this proposed amendment, but suffice it to say it sounds like some ripe for abuse. 

7)  Granting colleges and university the authority to prohibit carry on campus grounds.  Again, we know that criminals respect campus grounds and never commit crimes there.  I can't think of any shootings by criminals on a campus ever.  Well, except for that one.  And that other one.  Oh, yeah... that one too....

8)  Absolutely not one detectable drop of alcohol in a person carrying a gun.  Nope, not .08... not .04, not .000001.  Nothing. 

I certainly do not advocate drinking while carrying a gun, but any restriction that is so strict that it puts you in danger of violation by having some cold medicine or a slice of rum cake is going too far.  The legislature will allow people to drive without penalty if their blood alcohol level is below .08, but they fear a gun sitting untouched in a holster belonging to someone with a .0001 level more.  I will accept this amendment if the legislators promise to pass a similar provision for driving. 

9)  Prohibit licensees from storing handguns in locked vehicles in parking lots.  Okay, if we take this literally, does it mean if you don't have a license it's okay to store your gun in your car?  Or, is it acceptable to store your gun in an unlocked car?  I don't know who proposed this amendment, but I'll bet $5 was a Democrat.  Knowing full well that some employers will prohibit firearms on the job, this amendment would make it virtually impossible to protect yourself on the way to or from work. 

10)  Unlimited access by law enforcement to a list of license holders.  Nobody has ever explain why this would do anyone any good, and it simply opens up opportunities for abuse of the information.

11)  Public access to the list of licensees.  Even dumber than the amendment above, it was probably proposed by the same people who think you'll be safe in a domestic violence shelter.  Now your abuser can know just how unsafe you are by knowing you won't be carrying a gun.  As an added bonus, criminals can take the guessing out of which houses have guns to steal.  Nothing like making life easy for someone who intends to commit a crime.

12)  Make unlicensed concealed weapons a felony.  I don't care if you want to make it a felony penalty enhancer to commit a crime with a an unlicensed weapon.  Nor do I particularly care if the intent was to add a second felony charge for concealment, if a gun is concealed by a felon (it is a felony for a felon to possess a firearm.)  But weapons are already unfairly demonized, they do not need to be demonized further.  Enshrining the concept of permitted carry only will present a psychological barrier to future attempts to establish constitutional carry in Wisconsin.  This amendment also puts someone in danger of a felony conviction if their shirt accidentally covered a knife or openly carried gun by a person who did not obtain a permit.  Rather harsh punishment for having a gust of wind come by at the wrong time.

13)  Bans in common areas of multi-family properties.  Too stupid of an amendment to make further comment.  I don't know who submitted this amendment, but that person is an asshole.

14)  Increased penalty for trespassing that applies only to gun carriers.  Yeah, right. People who have no serious criminal history are the ones we need to really come down on hard!

15)  Don't recognize CCW permits or licenses from other states.  Sure, law-abiding visitors to Wisconsin should not be granted the same ability to protect themselves as we grant to ourselves.  That ought to make them feel welcome and safe in Wisconsin.  Mmmm hmmm!

16)  Prohibit DUI offenders from getting licenses.  This coming from a state that doesn't even have a criminal penalty for first time drunk drivers? 

17)  No carry in places that serve alcohol.  Yes, again, no crime happens inside or in the vicinity of places that serve alcohol, thanks to the ethical code to which criminals voluntarily subscribe. 

Madison Police Department Proclaims Itself Champion of Feedom and Constitutional Rights

In a self-serving PRESS RELEASE 
the Madison Police Department congratulates itself on its devotion to protecting the First Amendment rights of downtown Capitol Square protestors.

Unfortunately there was no such spirit of respect for the First, Second, Fourth and Fifth Amendment rights of the FIVE individuals who were given disorderly conduct citations last September because they were peacefully and lawfully wearing firearms while enjoying a meal at a local Culvers restaurant. 

Those charges were recently dismissed and dropped.  At the time of that incident last September, Chief Noble Wray indicated that he wanted to "reach out" and start a dialogue with pro-gun rights people. 

We're still here, waiting.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wisconsin Legislature has its priorities: Cream Puffs before Guns

The Wisconsin Senate is "poised" to make the cream puff Wisconsin's official dessert.  Too bad a concealed carry statute is taking much longer!  Why is self-defense and restoring citizen's rights a lesser priority?


Madison News: Woman mugged while stopped in her car

Note:  Current Wisconsin statutes require firearms to be unloaded and in a gun case when transported in a vehicle-- in other words, not immediately accessible.  The intent of the law was to make it difficult for game poachers.  The consequence, however, was to make it difficult for people to protect themselves while in vehicles.

Woman mugged after stopping car

Tuesday, June 7, 2011



Over the past twenty years or so there have been five or six occasions where I've been awakened by strange noises in or around the house that required investigation.  The sound of a garbage can being knocked, the dog alerting to a sound within the house, and a number of other indicators that something out of the ordinary may be occurring have gotten me from the comfort of my bed.  A single random noise from an unidentified source is not sufficient reason, in my mind, to call the police.  The police would not appreciate, nor do they have the resources, to investigate every noise residents hear in the middle of the night. 

So what do you do when something goes bump in the night?  Do you stay in bed awake the rest of the night listening and worrying?  I don't.  I make a check of the premises to make sure everything is okay so I can return to bed and resume restful sleep.  

What do I keep at my bedside to respond the possibility of an intruder in the house?  Some of the core items are shown above:

1)  Glock 35 pistol.  This is a .40 S&W caliber firearm with a 15-round magazine loaded with Winchester Ranger ammunition.  This ammunition is designed for law enforcement use and it offers the features of a good ammunition intended for self-protection:  reliability, reasonable accuracy and adequate stopping power.

The Glock is equipped with Meprolight night sights.  For anyone unfamiliar with night sights, they are small glass vials that contain Tritium, a radioactive isotope of Hydrogen. Tritium causes phosphors to glow and requires no outside electrical source.  Such illumination is used in a number of ways besides night sights for guns, e.g., on watches.  Tritium night sights will give off a continuous glow for 10 years or more.  Defensive shootings occur very often in low light conditions.  I have done a considerable amount of shooting in very low light conditions and I can attest to the advantage of using night sights from my experience.

The Glock also is equipped with a Streamlight M6 Tactical Laser Illuminator weapon light.  I do not carry this equipment for the laser beam, but for the very bright flashlight it features.  Lasers as gun sights have a certain amount of merit that can be discussed at another time, but I consider them a specialized piece of equipment with both advantages and disadvantages, depending upon the situation.  But I am a advocate of "light as a weapon" to make it difficult for a attacker to see.  A weapon-mounted light allows me to shoot with both hands, which is the preferred method of shooting, and it also allows me to shoot with light with just one hand and to use the other hand for other tasks when necessary, e.g., to open a door or to drag an injured person to cover.  I do not advocate using a weapon-mounted light for searching, because the gun muzzle points where the light points, and you do not want your muzzle pointing at anything you're not willing to shoot, i.e., an innocent person.  

For that reason, I also have at my bedside,

2)  A handheld flashlight.  Actually, I have three flashlights nearby.  Shown here is a Surefire G3 Nitrolon flashlight, which produces a very bright and concentrated beam of light.

3)  Spare loaded magazines.  Do I really expect to get in a firefight that requires that much ammo?  No, and I hope I never do!  I hope I never need to use a single round.  The Glock is as reliable as a gun can be, and mine has performed with 100% reliability through thousands of rounds fired.  This is why is earns a spot next to me at night.  But any mechanical device can fail, and the most common reason for a malfunction in a semi-auto pistol is magazine-related.  The middle of an attack is not the best time to experience the first malfunction of a gun.  I practice draws and reloads almost daily, to make sure I can do them smoothly, quickly and automatically without fumbling and to do it by feel alone.  A second reason I have spare magazines is because if I actually had to shoot, as soon as I could I would reload a full magazine (tactical reload.)  I read good advice once, and I don't remember the source, but to paraphrase the wise words: 
"Reloading a gun during a fight is like taking needing to take a piss:  a fool does it only when he has to, and a wise man does it when he can." 

4)  Cell phone.  It doesn't need much explanation.  A cell phone is portable, and works when your land line phone has been cut off.  I try to make sure that my phone's battery is freshly charged each night.

5)  Police scanner.  Certainly not essential, but it is good to be able to hear what's going on if something is happening in the area.  Also if I've called the police to my house, I want to know how far off they are, when they arrive, and to make sure they've been given correct information.  

6)  Electronic ear muffs.  I've recently added this to my night stand.  Electronic ear muffs amplify sound greatly, and cut off loud ear-damaging noises.  Both a big advantages.  When worn with the volume turned up, I can hear the cat walk across carpet.  An intruder in the house would be at a disadvantage when I possess dog or cat-like super hearing.  Second, guns are loud-- shooting a gun inside a room makes it seem that much louder.  I want to be able to continue to enjoy music and I don't need further damage to my hearing.
Items not pictured:

A)  Shotgun.  If I'm fairly confident that the noise that woke me up is an intruder, I might arm myself with a shotgun and use the pistol as my backup weapon.  I have a couple of shotguns nearby and lately I've been favoring my double barrel 12 ga. Stoeger coach gun.  Sure it's only two shots, but two shots of OO or OOO buckshot will decisively end most attacker's plans.  I favor the Coach gun because it is compact and much more maneuverable and quick to use inside the close confines of a house.

B)  Knife.  Unlikely I'd take the time to arm myself with a knife, but nonetheless I keep a Roton Talon attached to the coach gun scabbard.   

C)  Dog.  Our dog is small, but he has a larger dog's bark.  Better yet, he's alert and has excellent hearing and seems to have developed the ability to distinguish noises that belong from those that don't belong in the house. 

D)  Partner.  Last, but far from least, I have a very capable partner.  If an intruder thought I was the worst thing he could encounter breaking into the house, guess again.

Andrea is also a certified firearms instructor and together we make a pretty decent home-defense team.  And you know she won't let anyone get the upper hand--- she's Sicilian. 

Another Gun Control Success Story out off California

The anti-freedom / anti-gun / hate group known as "The Brady Campaign"  awards the state of California FOUR STARS and ranking it #1 for the best gun control laws in the United States.

How's that working, keeping guns out of the hands of criminals?

Apparently not too well. Click here!

Monday, June 6, 2011

How are those tough New Jersey gun laws working?

Keeping guns out of the hands of criminals?

Man shot to death outside Camden, NJ liquor store 

 Oh, by the way, Camden has been named the most dangerous city in the U.S. three out the past ten years.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Governor Walker is Wrong

 It's being reported in THE NEWS that Governor Scott Walker believes any concealed carry bill in Wisconsin ought to include permit and training requirements.

The Governor is absolutely wrong.  What a shame that he has apparently caved in to a long list of people and groups promoting  nonsense.

So much for adhering to his party's platform of "smaller government" and it's support for constitutional carry.  

Permits are worthless and meaningless.  Criminals already carry concealed weapons without a permit and will continue to do so.  Issuing permits to the law-abiding citizens does nothing to stop criminals from being armed.  No empirical evidence exists that suggests public safety is greater in states that require concealed weapons permits when compared to the states that do not require permits.  Likewise there is no data supporting enhanced public safety in states that have no mandatory training requirements.  

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Interview #3

Third interview

Second interview

Second post-Culvers incident interview

First interview from last September.

 As many know, five men were charged with disorderly conduct for wearing firearms while enjoying meals at a Madison Culvers restaurant.  Charges were recently dropped.  As the Secretary of Wisconsin Carry, Inc., and being in the Madison area I was interviewed countless times subsequent to that incident.  Most of the TV interviews are available on youtube.  Here was the first.

Click here to watch interview.