Friday, April 20, 2007

Electronic Weapons: After the firearms are gone.

(The following was authored by GUn Owners Caucus member, John Sweeney of Portland.)

Many electronic weapons are in test or reduced power forms. The electronic weapons are coming, eventually. A ban on firearms will mean sooner not later!

There are three main types of electronic weapons:

Laser Weapons. These are now coming into use with police agencies as riot control weapons. Even in this form, misuses can results in short or long term eye injuries. From the loss of night vision (no night flying, no night driving, no night bike riding) to total blindness. Advanced weapons will have the power to kill and injure at a long range. There are line of sight weapons with almost no limits. Beam velocity, 186,000 miles per second.

Microwave Weapons. These are now coming into use with police agencies in riots as control weapons (see above). Advanced weapons will be able to cook a live elephant (all 13,000 lbs) at a mile. Beam velocity, 186,000 miles per second.

EM Guns. Electromagnetic Guns, also known as Rail Guns. These are projectile weapons, with muzzle velocity of 26,000 feet per second (17,760 miles per hour). They could possibly shoot 17,000 shots per second. They could be used to shoot down buildings. Experimental versions are big now, but persoanl sizes are due soon.

Question for Blue Steel: What will "the right to keep and bear arms" mean when these and other technologies make gunpowder-based projectile weapons obsolete?


Monday, April 16, 2007

School Violence

Today it was at Virginia Tech. "It" refers to random acts of violence with firearms on school campuses. "It" is also one of the primary high-profile acts that leads many in the general public to advocate curtailing 2nd Amendment rights. "It" is unfortunately also a regular feature of American life.

Everybody who reads this blog knows the arguments for and against gun control--let's not waste time rehashing that.

But does anyone have solutions to offer for "it" that don't involve taking away civil liberties? As proponents of the 2nd Amendment, it is in our best interest to find and promote those solutions.

Any ideas? Please discuss.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

DeFazio, The Senate, And Eastern Oregon

I won't tell readers that Peter DeFazio will win a Senate race in Eastern Oregon, he could and conditions are good, but it will take smart politics to do it. Democrats out here are hungry for a Candidate and Peter DeFazio has a consistent and honorable record. His easy going populism should play well in an area that has not benefited from Republican economic policies. He would not have to dodge a gun-grabber identity, his "B" rating from the NRA is not too bad for a national Democrat. Gordon Smith has a voting record that he is stuck with, if a campaign makes sure of it.

Democrats can win out here, Ron Wyden (D) has carried or nearly carried these counties, Gov. Kulongoski got good numbers (despite his campaign's early lack of attention) and local Democrats can do well. There are national issues that have, over the years, very nearly poisoned the well for Democrats, but a DeFazio campaign could overcome that. Money and press are a large part of that, but so is grass roots, and Democratic Parties in the counties can be or are active. The $5 contributions mentioned here are the kind of thing that show a grass roots support. A candidate must have visible support out here, signage and press and a campaign headquarters of some sort are a must and that takes attention. Ron Wyden pays visible attention to Eastern Oregon, others have dropped the ball. Fortunately for national candidates most television out here is westside, their ads get play, but on the ground support is essential. Newspapers, radio, and a general noise level are important. A viable candidate will get newspaper attention, but letters to the editor from locals and a general buzz are only possible from grassroots.

Peter DeFazio is a skilled politician and he knows this stuff, that's why a demonstration of support is so important, those $5 contributions.The Senate is very narrowly in Democratic hands, any Democratic losses would be catastrophic and additions would be hugely beneficial. Peter DeFazio is one of the best of the Democrats in the House today, in order to show that the loss of his presence in the House is outweighed by his chances in the Senate he needs to be shown broad support, he and the national Democratic machine. Bloggers can help, but it will take more than that, his Website has important info on his activities and contact information, he encourages E-mail as post mail is slow to reach him. Phone calls and letters:

Washington, DC Office2134 Rayburn H.O.B.Washington DC, 20515Phone: (202) 225-6416

Eugene Office405 East 8th Ave. #2030Eugene, OR 97401Phone: (541) 465-6732

Coos Bay Office125 Central, Suite 350Coos Bay, OR 97420Phone: (541) 269-2609

Roseburg Office612 S.E Jackson Street, Room 9Roseburg, OR 97470Phone: (541) 440-3523

If you'd like to see someone like Peter DeFazio as Oregon's other Democratic Senator it's going to take persuasion. The Smith people have more money than god himself and certain rather stupid editorial boards on their side, Pete needs to be shown that he has more on his side. Not only does Gordon Smith need to be sent home, he needs to be replaced by someone like Peter DeFazio, that being the case, why not have the actual article?

This will be cross posted at Chuck for and Bluesteel Democrats and Draft DeFazio since it's been awhile since I've had somebody to actually be "For." I'm doing my little part, how about you?

Monday, April 02, 2007

On-Campus Gun Ban Didn’t Save UW Domestic Violence Victim

The University of Washington suffered a tragic loss today when a campus employee was gunned down by her domestic violence abuser. She apparently had a restraining order (RO) to protect her along with a university administrative rule banning guns at her workplace (the university).

When representing domestic violence victims, I always instruct them that ROs don’t make them bullet proof and criminals don’t always follow the law. While ROs and the criminal statutes protect most people from most perpetrators, they don’t protect victims from the worst offenders—those intending to do harm regardless of the consequences. I recall this being evident in at least three of the recent Lane County domestic violence murders where all the perpetrators had protective orders against them.

Washington’s campus gun ban differs from Oregon law. Washington bans firearms on campus even when a person has a lawful concealed carry license. A person can apply for an exception to that rule through the university chief of police. An official at the University Police Department stated that the person needs a good reason to get approval.

Considering the seriousness given to domestic violence these days, one could assume that this victim could have successfully pursued this. However, this exception likely only applies to those aware of a potential personal threat, leaving unaware coworkers without the means of protecting themselves and others.

Oregon on the other hand does not allow campuses to make administrative rules restricting the right to possess a firearm when you have a concealed carry permit. That authority is vested solely in the state legislature. This means campuses including universities and school districts cannot regulate the possession of firearms without a statute permitting such action. Currently no such mechanism exists; hopefully it will stay that way considering virtually all campus gun violence is perpetrated by criminals without a conceal carry permit.

Because of this Oregon legislative preemption, Oregonians have a greater chance of a law-abiding citizen at their campus workplace carrying a firearm. I often wonder how the outcome of campus violence would differ if districts and universities actively encouraged concealed carry permit holders to exercise that right. Perhaps that would be the difference between a defenseless situation at the UW and a less tragic outcome.

ORS 166.170 State preemption. (1) Except as expressly authorized by state statute, the authority to regulate in any matter whatsoever the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, storage, transportation or use of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the Legislative Assembly.
(2) Except as expressly authorized by state statute, no county, city or other municipal corporation or district may enact civil or criminal ordinances, including but not limited to zoning ordinances, to regulate, restrict or prohibit the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, storage, transportation or use of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition. Ordinances that are contrary to this subsection are void.
C. Michael Arnold,
Attorney at Law
Eugene, Oregon