Beslan

Say Uncle points out some school violence in the Middle East that was thwarted by armed school counselors and I left this comment on the post:

I just watched the HBO documentary ‘Children of Beslan’ again, which is the story of that event told by the kids who were there. Absolutely, stunningly horrific.

I don’t know if armed teachers would have made a difference or not, but I suspect that they might have.

The terrorists f***ers jumped the school during a big celebration with many parents present so that they could get the most people at once. If concealed carry had been permitted on school grounds, and it was a known fact that some teachers and probably some parents were armed, it would have at least made planning and execution more difficult. And however motivated the teachers may have been, a dozen or two parents with guns protecting their children from those b***ards would have been more motivated.

Now, I’ll say that I don’t think a Beslan scenario is nearly as likely in the US. I hope. But over 300 people were killed, including 186 children. I guess I’d like more than hope as weapon against those types if it came down to it.

When something bad goes down, its too late to decide that maybe being prepared and capable of dealing with a potential threat is maybe a good idea.

More over at Ahab’s, where a commenter writes

The thing is, teachers are one of the most trusted professional group of people in our society. Most everyone in our society works with them for years, 13+ years. We can and should trust them if they are willing to carry.

Indeed. We trust these people to shape the minds of our children and prepare them for the “real world.” They are one of the biggest daily influences on America’s kids for over a decade during their most formative years. To argue that they can be trusted with this while they can’t be trusted to protect those same kids in an extreme situation where no one else is going to be able to is, at the very least, quite inconsistent.

Guns in Parking Lots

Utah: Committee OKs bill to allow guns to be kept in private cars

Parking-lot owners would be unable to have policies against guns in vehicles under a bill passed by a Senate committee Tuesday.

“Some people have characterized this as gun versus property rights,” said Sen. Mark Madsen, R-Eagle Mountain. “Really, though, it’s a life right versus a property right. A balance between life and property. When you put appropriate issues on the scales, you find that life does weigh heavier than property.”

The bill does not apply to school grounds, state and local government entities or religious organizations. It requires that the person with the gun be legally allowed to possess and transport the gun, that the vehicle be locked or that the gun is in a locked container and that the gun is not in plain view. The bill also has exceptions for secured parking lots.

Via GunPro.

Give me that shotgun, punk

Teen bandits flee after store clerk takes gun

Dover, Delaware:

Two teens walked into the Little Grocer convenience store on East Division Street about 9 p.m. Sunday and demanded money, Lt. James Hosfelt said.

When one of the bandits brandished a sawed-off shotgun in the direction of the clerk behind the counter, the gunman and clerk got into a physical confrontation, Hosfelt said.

The clerk refused to hand over any money from the register and then grabbed the shotgun out of the hand of the would-be robber.

At this point, the two teens decided to leave the store.

Via the Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog, which keeps a steady stream of these stories coming.

More on Arizona Senate Bill 1214

I’m in Arizona for a couple of days, so I feel totally justified in posting yet again on the bill in the state Senate which would allow people with concealed carry permits to carry their gun on school property. Today we have a letter to the editor in the Arizona Republic from a teacher which includes

Just because concealed-carry permit holders must pass a criminal-background check and take a gun-safety course, as I did for my hunting license, even though I knew considerable about it beforehand, does not mean that I or anyone else should be carrying a weapon on a school campus unless he or she is a law-enforcement officer performing his or her duties.

Before lawmakers pass this bill, they should see how teachers feel about it and not go off half-cocked and get someone shot because of this inane idea.

Certainly, lawmakers should get feedback from teachers on this issue. But as for “getting someone shot,” I think the idea is to get the right people shot instead of the innocent people hoping that the police get there soon. Or, even better, keep everyone from getting shot by deterring would-be murderers by the mere threat of armed people on campus.

Meanwhile, the lunatics are still haunting the comments section of the paper’s articles on this issue. Here’s a good one:

The “gun nuts” don’t think like the rest of the populations. This is obvious by their stance on this issue, wanting to place weapons that kill in the hands of immature and developing students. What is this insanity and mentality that we are facing?

Someone who doesn’t realize that “immature and developing students” can’t get concealed carry permits (and, therefore, couldn’t legally carry on campus even if the bill becomes law) is calling names? Typical.

And then there’s this one, which I believe to be a taste of things to come:

Keep your guns !! Even buy more !

We need to STOP PRODUCING ammunition and the materials to reload, particularly the explosives. That will drive ammo to the black market where it will become exceedingly expensive and most often defective.

How’s that?

A different commenter responds

Of course you amended our constitution and it was ratified by all states frist right? Because until then that alternative is not valid.

To which the first commenters replies

Valid, schmalid.

The Constitution, I think, left out the phrase “and ammunition” following the phrase “bear arms”. The hair-splitters will have to tackle that one.

Gun afficianados can certainly go back to black powder (easily home-made, as you may or may not know) and muzzle loaders — so citizen rights to bear arms will NOT have been infringed upon. The Constitution does NOT guarantee the right to bear arms of the most modern and deadly character that modern technology can provide — if you think otherwise, show us where that guarantee lies in the Constitution.

Ironic, of course, is the fact that this guy posted his comment about the Constitution not meaning modern guns using a computer connected to the internet. Why he didn’t use a hand-operated printing press or maybe a town crier to exercise his free speech, I don’t know.

Anyway, I suspect that we’ll be seeing more of the “ban the ammunition” plan in the near future.

Dust Chamber Testing ARs

3…2…1…Dust-Off!

Note: This column appeared in the September/October 2007 issue of Shooting Sports Retailer magazine. For more info, see the startling results here, plus more here and here.

Bowing to Congressional pressure, the US Army is conducting a test to determine whether concerns about their rifles jamming in the desert are justified. Beginning in August and scheduled to run through the end of the year, the tests at the Army Test and Evaluation Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., will use a “dust chamber” to see whether a long history of anecdotal evidence of M16 and M4 jamming and maintenance problems in harsh environments warrants a closer look.

More interesting than a mere test of the M4, though, is the fact that the carbine will be compete head to head against a list of worthy challengers. The competitors, all hoping to outdo the M4 and each other, are the Heckler & Koch HK416, the Heckler & Koch XM8, and FNH USA’s Mk16 SCAR (Special Operations Forces Combat Assault Rifle). All three of the challengers are short-stroke piston weapons as opposed to the M4’s direct gas impingement system (see “The Next Wave of ARs” in the May/Jun Battleground column). If ever there was a chance for the pistons to show their stuff against the status quo, this might be it.
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