Jason Hayes

Libertarian thought, policy, religion, the environment, tech, coffee, and Tabasco – the stuff of life
This is my personal blog - the thoughts and ideas expressed here are posted on my own time and are mine and mine alone.

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This Young Lady Gets It

Amazing that this young lady can be so well versed in basic civics and statistics when the so-called leaders of our country can’t seem to grasp even the most basic aspects of either.

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Larry Pratt of GOA decimates Piers Morgan’s anti-gun ranting

Here’s another recent video of Piers Morgan lowering the level of discussion to the gutter and logical fallacy.

The sum total of Piers Morgan’s arguments is this,

You are talking complete and utter nonsense….

… What you just said, Mr. Pratt, was an absolute lie …

… You’re an unbelievably stupid man, aren’t you? …

… What a ridiculous argument. You have absolutely no coherent argument whatsoever. You don’t give a damn, do you, about the gun murder rate in America. You don’t actually care …

… It’s complete nonsense …

… It’s down to idiots like you …

… You wouldn’t understand the meaning of the phrase ‘high level argument.’ You are a dangerous man espousing dangerous nonsense, and you shame your country …

Larry Pratt – whether you agree with his arguments or not – absolutely decimated Morgan’s scraping the bottom of the barrel style of argument. Pratt remained calm and collected throughout Morgan’s ad hominem laced assault. He made several logical points that repeatedly knocked Morgan off of his high horse. All Morgan had left in his pathetic bag of tricks was personal attacks.

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The reality is that firearms save lives

It’s honestly grotesque that Mayor Bloomberg and others of his anti-gun ilk have rushed so quickly to politicize the horrific mass murder in Aurora today.

However, it is essential that we remember that “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” Therefore, as Mayor Bloomberg et al have opened the discussion, people of reason and good conscience must respond. In that vein …

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The best ad ever made

Can’t give it away. You have to watch it.

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NRA leaning toward a Harry Reid endorsement?

UPDATE: I just got off of the phone with the NRA ILA and they stated clearly (three times because I kept asking the same question) that this was a false report and that the NRA was not endorsing anyone in that race as of yet.

Once again, the lady on the phone said that this was a “false report.”

——————————————————

Reports are out that the NRA may endorse (the virulently anti-second amendment) Harry Reid over his conservative & PRO-GUN opponent, Sharon Angle. If this is true, I’ll dump my NRA life membership so fast it will make my head spin.

On hold with the NRA ILA right now to find out what is actually going on.

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MSNBC purposefully edits video to push racism story

This is perhaps one of the most egregious examples of the mainstream media purposefully trying to push a biased, political slant that I have had the misfortune of seeing.

Watch the MSNBC video and see how the person carrying the AR-15 is depicted and then listen to the discussion afterward. It is clear that Contessa Brewer and her cronies in the video are trying to push the notion that angry, racist, whites are carrying firearms to townhall meetings. They openly state their belief that the white racists are angry that we have an African-American President and that one of them is likely to try and do something dangerous and potentially harmful to the President. (via HotAir)

After watching the MSNBC video, there is no mistaking their intention. They are attempting to make the person with the AR-15 out to be an angry white racist. They are trying to imply that he is someone who needs to be feared and that police and secret service need to watch for the inevitable race-motivated crime against our president.

However, this video below adds a twist to the situation that MSNBC has (purposefully) omitted. Check it out yourself and then see if MSNBC needs to rethink their editorial slant.

You can agree or disagree with this 4409 group (whoever they are or whatever they are trying to accomplish), but there is no getting around the fact that MSNBC purposefully edited this video to conceal the color of “Chris’” skin. A 10-second trip to Google will provide several videos of this person (with his head and hands intact). However, the color of this gentleman’s skin didn’t fit with the ‘white racist anger’ narrative that Contessa Brewer and the rest of the MSNBC staff were trying to spin. So they simply edited it out.

Update: Via HotAir, MSNBC is spinning their creative editing and “reporting” as

“Contessa was speaking generally and not about that specific person with the automatic weapon.”

Right … that’s why they felt the need to purposefully edit the video to cut out the color of this gentleman’s skin???

In response, Americans for Limited Government are calling for Brewer and everyone related to the gun-toting, white racists story to be fired.

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Pelosi wants your firearms registered

It’s not enough for Madame Pelosi that the Canadian government squandered over $2 billion on a completely useless (and likely soon to be abandoned) firearms registry. She’s got to have one in the U.S. as well.

In this ABC interview, they start talking about firearms at around the 2:50 point and Pelosi states clearly at 4:42 that “We want them registered. We don’t want them crossing state lines.”

$2 billion tax dollars to register a portion of the 6 to 21 million legally-owned Canadian firearms. Consider that there’s somewhere between 200 and 300 million firearms in the U.S. How much more will the government want to spend down here to make their registry happen?

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Pro-gun Congresswoman to replace Hillary

This appointment by NY Governor David Patterson will make the folks at the Brady Campaign squirm.

New York Governor David Paterson has appointed Congresswoman Kirsten Gillibrand to take up Hillary Clinton’s vacant senate seat. …

Ms Gillibrand, a Democrat, represents a conservative congressional district in upstate New York.

Correspondents say her support for gun-owners’ rights puts her on the right wing of the party.

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Recession spurs interest in hunting

For the past 30+ years, the number of hunters has been declining. Now with money and grocery budgets tight and time less of a precious commodity for many, this FoxNews.com article describes how hunting is rapidly coming back as a popular pastime.

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No way to rule innocent men

I just saw this quote used as a signature line in an email by Bruce Montague — the fellow who is literally putting his life and everything he has on the line to protect the rights of Canadian firearms owners against the abusive power of the state. If anyone knows that this statement is absolutely true, it’s him.

“There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power government has is the power to crack down on criminals. When there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Unjust laws have to be fought ideologically; they cannot be fought or corrected by means of mere disobedience and futile martyrdom.”

– Ayn Rand
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NY Times guns are bad, except when they bring in ad $$$’s

Here’s a classic example of another NY Times double standard via David Petzel’s, “the Gun Nut” blog. After the Heller decision, Petzel found the editorial version of a panic attack on the June 27 edition of the New York Times. Amusingly, this little descent into hysteria was actually titled “Lock and Load.”

Thirty-thousand Americans are killed by guns every year — on the job, walking to school, at the shopping mall. The Supreme Court on Thursday all but ensured that even more Americans will die senselessly with its wrongheaded and dangerous ruling striking down key parts of the District of Columbia’s gun-control law.

In a radical break from 70 years of Supreme Court precedent, Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority, declared that the Second Amendment guarantees individuals the right to bear arms for nonmilitary uses, even though the amendment clearly links the right to service in a “militia.” The ruling will give gun-rights advocates a powerful new legal tool to try to strike down gun-control laws across the nation.

This is a decision that will cost innocent lives, cause immeasurable pain and suffering and turn America into a more dangerous country. It will also diminish our standing in the world, sending yet another message that the United States values gun rights over human life.

70 years of precedent? Ummm … what precedent was that?

Of course the editorial writer forgot to mention that all the gun crime they are discussing, as it relates to D.C., has happened in a liberal Utopia. Up until the SCOTUS ruling, guns were banned, so, if the anti-gun mantra were true, the streets of DC should have been as peaceful as the Beaver’s home town of Mayfield. Strangely though, criminals kept getting guns despite the strict laws. Even stranger, they kept using them in crimes. Even stranger still, DC had some of the highest gun-related crime rates in the country. Something was just not adding up … but I digress.

So the NY Times staff is deathly afraid of the impacts that the SCOTUS ruling on the Second Amendment will have on the peace-loving citizens of our nation’s capital. Now that law-abinding citizens are allowed to keep guns … IN THEIR HOMES!!!!!! … WITHOUT TRIGGER LOCKS!!!!!! there’s no doubt that the streets will be running with blood. Wild west shootouts will ensue and anarchy will reign supreme.

The unrest and death are all because of those demon firearms. They have a life and mind of their own and whatever they touch turns a palid shade of corpse grey. Except, that is, the NY Times advertising budget, when gun-related movies come their way, they glow a brilliant shade of green. Returning to the initial thoughts of this post, Petzel noticed a few pages later, in the Weekend Arts section, a review of the new Angelina Jolie flick, “Wanted.” Petzel describes a section of that review,

“A man has soared onto the roof of a high rise where he has laid a handful of others to waste. Suddenly the camera cuts to his face as a bullet exits his head in slow motion, his skin stretching forward as the projectile tears through it going straight for the camera and our already numbed skulls. Well, that’s one way to get the attention of fickle movie goers…”

Of course, movie-goers seeing a bullet tear through the skull of a human being in slow motion is just good cinema. That’s artistic and full of merit. And the fact that the Times can make a LOT of coin off of the ad or column space just makes it so much better. Not surprisingly, Petzel notes that the Times has,

on page 11 of the same section is a ¾-page, four-color ad for “Wanted,”

So to recap, law abiding citizens practicing their Second Amendment right to keep and bear firearms is cause for the editorial staff at the Times to collectively wet their pants as they look forward to the impending apocalypse. However, gratuitous and graphic violence, and bullets tearing through the skulls of human beings are all perfectly acceptable because they can help the Times prop up lagging ad revenue.

There’s no contradiction here, so stop looking for one.

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Toronto City Councilor says “gun-toting Yanks” should stay away

Here’s the text of a May 29th letter to the editor, published in the Toronto Star, and written by Toronto City Councilor, Adam Vaughn. If you’re an American, read through it and then let me know if you plan on spending any time in Toronto any time soon.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Guns aren’t welcome in Toronto
May 30, 2008 04:30 AM
Re:Targeting the good guys
Letters, May 29

It is interesting to note that letters criticizing Toronto City Council for closing down city-run shooting ranges were sent from Mississauga, Halifax, Wellesley, Ont., Pickering and Peterborough.

I supported shutting down the shooting ranges because I believe it is hypocritical for city council to call for a total ban on handguns, while supporting and in fact subsidizing gun culture at city-run facilities – especially when recreation programs to keep kids away from the draw of a street culture that too often includes weapons are underfunded in Toronto.

Letters from outside the city and indeed from across North America have been trickling in since council made its decision. My favourite letters are the ones being sent from the U.S. Gun owners there are now urging a boycott of Toronto. Considering that most of the problems with guns on our streets emanate from south of the border, I couldn’t be happier.

If all it took was closing a couple of shooting ranges to stop gun-toting Yanks from coming to our city, maybe we should have shut the doors on these clubs years ago. (emphasis added)

As for people outside Toronto, you are free to shoot off your mouths in this city or any other town. Just don’t shoot off a gun in Toronto.

Adam Vaughan, City Councillor, Toronto

I think all Americans should give the good people of Toronto exactly what they want. Keep your business and your money away from Toronto and anything that might have anything to do with Toronto. We wouldn’t want to sully their pristine hotels, restaurants, convention centres, and tourist attractions with our dirty “gun-toting Yankee” dollars now would we?

Let’s see if the Councillor is capable of figuring out the difference between the Toronto-based drug-dealers and gangs that are carrying out the shootings in Toronto and peaceable, law-abiding American tourists and business people.

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What it takes to own a handgun in Canada

For those hoplophobes out there and for those who labour under the delusion that it is easy to legally possess a firearm in Canada, columnist Lorne Gunter has very briefly described what a normal, sane, law-abiding Canadian — with no past criminal history — has to go through to legally obtain a handgun.

If you, a law-abiding Canadian with no criminal record and no history of mental illness, decided tomorrow to take up handgun collecting or target shooting, it could take as much as eight to 12 months before you actually got you hands on a pistol.

The underlying assumption in the Canadian firearms bureaucracy is that you probably want the gun for all the wrong reasons. So you would be subjected to a series of obstacles designed to weed out anyone unworthy of ownership.

You would have to apply for a licence, complete an extensive safety course and pass an hours-long safety test. After that, you would need special permission to buy a handgun, as opposed to a rifle or shotgun. Your recent employment history would be investigated to ensure you are not some newly laid-off maniac looking to exact revenge on his former employer and co-workers.

If you’ve recently divorced or left your common-law spouse, your chances of being approved would be reduced. Your ex-partner might even be contacted for a character reference and authorities would place a get deal of stock in her answers.

Then, if you are eventually approved, you would be able to go to a gun shop and buy a handgun. But before you could take the gun home, you would have to take the bill of sale to police and apply for a transportation permit, a step that could take several additional weeks. Then, if police grant you a permit, you could go back to the gun shop, pick up your pistol, lock it in your trunk in a locked gun case and take it directly home.

Thereafter, you could only take it from your home to the shooting range you designated on your transportation permit, again locked in a case in your locked trunk. And you would have to take the most direct route and make no stops along the way, there or back.

That’s how “easily accessible” legal handguns are.

Of course, these law-abiding citizens are the only ones who will be impacted by the anti-gun rhetoric and political games of people like Toronto mayor David Miller . No reasonable person expects that the criminal element and gang-bangers will pay any attention to the Mayor’s plans for a citywide gun ban. They never paid any heed to the bans in D.C.; they never paid any heed to the registration requirements for handguns that have been in place since the 1930s in Canada. Why would they bother paying attention to a municipal code?

Of course, when you realize that Miller is fully aware of the futility of his demands and that he is likely gunning for a run at the Premier’s job (or something bigger), you see that his gun ban games are just more symbolic politicking. The man is building his cred with socialist do-gooders and whether his ban moves ahead (and ends up killing innocent, disarmed people), or gets shut down by one of the few remaining judges with any sense in their heads, he has shown that he “cares.” In the world of the gun grabbers and liberal politics, that is all that really matters.

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When prejudices meet reality

This BBC News article is perhaps one of the best examples of an unwarranted prejudice being demolished by the simple truth. America is not the “wild west” and firearms do not cause violence.

In the article, the author lists off the standard misperceptions many people have about life in the U.S.A. He repeats the oft heard refrain of the average American city being awash in crime and Americans having to dodge a hail of bullets every time they leave their homes. He struggles to match his smug knowledge that, in America, muggers, rapist, and thugs hide behind every tree and and that the so-called “gun culture” ensures that no one is safe, with the reality that he has seen every day for the past six years that he has lived here. That reality is that the stories aren’t true and you can almost hear his carefully nurtured prejudices being ripped away from their shaky foundations as he says,

Despite the fact there are more than 200 million guns in circulation, there is a certain tranquility and civility about American life.

If you listen, you could probably hear him scratching his head and muttering as he tries to reconcile these words coming from his own keyboard.

Why is it then that so many Americans – and foreigners who come here – feel that the place is so, well, safe?

I have met incredulous British tourists who have been shocked to the core by the peacefulness of the place

A British man I met in Colorado recently told me he used to live in Kent but he moved to the American state of New Jersey and will not go home because it is, as he put it, “a gentler environment for bringing the kids up.”

This is New Jersey. Home of the Sopranos.

Brits arriving in New York, hoping to avoid being slaughtered on day one of their shopping mission to Manhattan are, by day two, beginning to wonder what all the fuss was about. By day three they have had had the scales lifted from their eyes.

I have met incredulous British tourists who have been shocked to the core by the peacefulness of the place, the lack of the violent undercurrent so ubiquitous in British cities, even British market towns.

“It seems so nice here,” they quaver.

Well, it is! …

And this is Manhattan.

Wait till you get to London Texas, or Glasgow Montana, or Oxford Mississippi or Virgin Utah, for that matter, where every household is required by local ordinance to possess a gun.

Folks will have guns in all of these places and if you break into their homes they will probably kill you.

They will occasionally kill each other in anger or by mistake, but you never feel as unsafe as you can feel in south London.

It is a paradox. Along with the guns there is a tranquillity and civility about American life of which most British people can only dream.

What surprises the British tourists is that, in areas of the US that look and feel like suburban Britain, there is simply less crime and much less violent crime.

Doors are left unlocked, public telephones unbroken.

It is amusing to see how quickly the hysteria and hype shatter against the rock of reality and it is good to see an obviously proud ex-pat Brit admitting that things are worse — far worse — in London than they are in Manhattan.

People can try to deny it and they can cling to their wrongheaded beliefs about the violence in America. However, the reality is that you’re probably safer here than pretty much any where else on the planet.

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District of Columbia v. Heller

Today’s the big day. The SCOTUS will hear arguments in the District of Columbia v. Heller (D.C. gun ban / Second Amendment) case today. This is the first time since 1939 that the SCOTUS has considered the question of whether or not the Second Amendment is an individual right.

The NRA has a good compilation of the arguments presented by both sides, as well as the Amicus Briefs filed by others in the case.

Project 21 and the National Center for Public Policy Research have a good editorial on why the D.C. gun ban is so wrong-headed.

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Statistics Canada study confirms firearms not the cause of violent crime

Thanks to Garry Brietkreuz for his tireless work to reveal the truth about firearms and crime. In a recent news release he described recently released StatsCan data that shows violent crime in Canada has little to nothing to do with firearms and all of the attempts by government and special interests to restrict the rights of Canadian firearms owners have had little to no impact on violent crime.

For example, the study shows that the vast majority (over 3/4) of all violent crime was committed without any form of weapon — meaning physical force, hands, fists, and feet were the most likely “weapons” to be used by violent Canadian criminals in 2006. These weapons were followed by knives, which were used in 9.2% of violent crime and blunt instruments and clubs, which were used in 3% of violent crimes.

Interestingly, the study showed that firearms were only used in 2.4% of all violent crime. Handguns — which have been required to be registered and have been largely banned or had their ownership severely restricted throughout the country since 1934 — were used in 3/4 of those crimes (or 1.8% of all violent crime).

Firearms crime in Canada

Some may try to argue that this information demonstrates the effectiveness of the 1995 firearms registry in reducing crime. However, this graphic from the StatsCan information shows clearly that overall firearms crime has been trending down or has remained stable since 1977 (or before); crime related to long guns has also trended down during that time period, while firearms crime with handguns — the most restricted and regulated type of firearm — has trended slightly up.

This new StatsCan study reinforces the findings of other countries around the world and helps to demonstrate the complete failure of attempts to address the issue of violent crime by restricting the legal ownership of firearms. Those with a criminal intent to harm or commit acts of violence will do one of two things when carrying out their plans. 1) They will use other weapons (even their hands and feet), or 2) They will ignore the restrictions on firearms, obtain them illegally, and then commit their next crime.

The simple fact of the matter is that criminals (by definition) do not care about the laws and regulations; they wouldn’t be “criminals” if they did.

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Obama’s difficulties with the 2nd Amendment

As this Reason article describes, Obama is no friend of the American firearms owner and his understanding of little things like the Constitution are sadly lacking (or worse, have become purposefully distorted in the pursuit of his ideology).

In last year’s ruling, which the U.S. Supreme Court will soon review, the D.C. Circuit overturned a Washington, D.C., gun law that bans possession of handguns in the home and requires that rifles and shotguns be kept “unloaded and disassembled or bound by a trigger lock.” The law thereby effectively bars city residents from using firearms for self-defense in their own homes.

Obama evidently considers that de facto prohibition a “common-sense regulation,” since he recently cited Washington’s law as an example of constitutionally permissible gun control. “The notion that somehow local jurisdictions can’t initiate gun safety laws to deal with gangbangers and random shootings on the street isn’t borne out by our Constitution,” he said. …

It’s not surprising that Obama sees nothing unconstitutional about this situation, since he does not acknowledge that the Second Amendment has anything to do with self-defense. “As a former constitutional law professor, Barack Obama understands and believes in the constitutional right of Americans to bear arms,” his website claims. “He will protect the rights of hunters and other law-abiding Americans to purchase, own, transport, and use guns for the purposes of hunting and target shooting” (emphasis added).

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This isn’t rocket science

Good to see that there are at least two people at Yale with some common sense.

THE VALENTINE’S DAY SHOOTING at Northern Illinois University, following last year’s Virginia Tech Massacre, makes college shootings seem like an emerging fad among suicidal lunatics. There were no such shootings in the 2005-2006 academic year, one last academic year, and three this academic year–so far. …

When I asked my friends how lives could have been saved in that situation, some pointed out that things would have been a lot safer if Steven Kazmierczak had not been armed in the first place, and suggested that we ought to pass some sort of law that will insure the next Kazmierczak won’t have a gun. But if someone is willing to
murder, why would he worry about getting and carrying guns illegally?

Some students (and professors) naively suggest that we simply eliminate all illegal gun sales. But if we could do that, why not go all the way and eliminate crime altogether? Some liberals seem to forget that crime is already illegal.

On the other hand: If we let trained students carry their licensed weapons on campus, as they’re allowed to in the rest of the city, we’d at least have a chance of defending ourselves and our friends.

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British anti-gun laws are a complete failure

Interesting post on the NRA site that details the near total failure of the UKs attempts to make their society safer by banning the private ownership of firearms.

Essentially, the firearm issue never has been about the guns themselves, but more about eroding social mores balanced against the rights of the individual. And while America has thus far managed to protect its Right to Keep and Bear Arms for self-protection (borrowed for use in our Constitution from the 1689 English Bill of Rights), many of the English rank and file clamor to have theirs back as societal mayhem takes advantage of the vacuum created by disarmament.

Dismayed Brits point to their country`s egregious gun laws, the toughest firearm restrictions of any democracy, and argue that they not only didn`t reduce violent crime but managed, as documented by the British press, to leave “law-abiding citizens at the mercy of criminals confident (their) victims have neither the means nor legal rights to resist them.” The BBC reported that gun bans “seem to have little impact on the criminal underworld,” while the use of handguns to commit crimes rose 40 percent during the two years following the total ban on them.

Simultaneously, the number of innocent citizens robbed at gunpoint rose some 53 percent. In 2002, the chances of being mugged in London were approximately six times greater than in New York City, cultural center of the “lawless Wild West” so often mocked by British snobbery. Overall, rates of assault, robbery and burglary shot past those recorded in America and, maybe most ominously, 53 percent of British burglaries were said to occur while the residents were still in their homes.

For all their talk and bluster, all British politicians have accomplished with their anti-gun rules and regulations is making their society less safe .

Read the rest. If you have an open mind, it should open your eyes to the futility of policies that attack the rights of innocent, law abiding citizens while ignoring the actual causes of crime.

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