VA-ALERT: VCDL Update 12/27/12

1. Code Pink to protest at Chantilly gun show on today (Friday, December 28th) 
2. VCDL presentation at Second Tuesday Constitution Group in Roanoke on Tuesday, January 8th 
3. MILLER: Handgun hypocrisy 
4. Response to VA-ALERT: Gun ownership attacked after murder/suicide‏ 
5. Bob Costas, NBC attacks Americans' Constitutional right of self-defense 
6. Speak Up: Bob Costas' anti-gun comments 
7. Bob Costas: Young men can't own guns "without something bad happening" 
8. Excellent video response to Bob Costas' gun control misinformation [VIDEO] 
9. Fox points out hypocrisy of Costas' anti-gun rant 
10. Bill O'Reilly has Bob Costas on to explain his gun control comments [VIDEO] 
11. Steeler's linebacker James Harrison says guns are not the problem 
12. Charles Barkley tells Costas why he carries a gun 
13. Jovan Belcher tragedy: blame the man not the NRA [VIDEO] 
14. NFL players: three out of four own guns 
15. Gutfeld rips Costas with story about guns saving lives [VIDEO] 
16. Police: Boy, 7, shot to death at Pa. gun store 
17. Spike in gun sales attributed to 'Zombie Apocalypse' 
18. Californians buying guns at record rates 
19. Burglar calls 911 to save himself from gun-wielding homeowner 
20. Concealed carry permit holder thwarts assault 
21. Mass shooting victims and relatives make a living from the tragedy 


************************************************* 
1. Code Pink to protest at Chantilly gun show on today (Friday, December 28th) 
************************************************* 

Code Pink, which I have seen described as either Piers Morgan or Michael Moore in a dress, is planning on protesting at the Chantilly gun show today between 3 PM and 5 PM. I'm not sure what they are protesting since the murders in Connecticut had nothing whatsoever to do with gun shows. But logic is never popular with with gun-haters. 

Thanks to Kyle Ferguson for the link: 

http://www.codepink4peace.org/article.php?id=6313 


************************************************* 
2. VCDL presentation at Second Tuesday Constitution Group in Roanoke on Tuesday, January 8th 
************************************************* 

VCDL EM and firearms instructor John Wilburn and I are going to be addressing the Second Tuesday Constitution Group in Roanoke on Tuesday, January 8th starting at 6:30 PM. 

The meeting is open to the public. 

Address: 

Holiday Inn. Tanglewood 
4468 Starkey Rd (Rt. 419 & I 581) 
Roanoke, VA 24018 

Here's the announcement: 

Fellow Patriots......Now Is The Time To Band Together, 
To Persevere, To Grow Our Ranks, To Continue Educating 
Our Fellow Citizens Of Virginia And To Be Relentless In 
Defense Of Our Unalienable Rights; Life, Liberty 
And The Pursuit Of Happiness!! 

The recent tragic event in Sandy Hook has brought out the gun control 
supporters in mass. Supporters of the 2nd Amendment must stand 
strong...but certainly not silent!! 

Please make plans to join us for our 2013 kickoff meeting on 
Tuesday, January 8th, 6:30 pm, Holiday Inn, Tanglewood. 

Our speakers will be as follow; 

VCDL Executive Member and NRA Certified firearms instructor, John Wilburn, 
who will update us on newopportunities to volunteer for VCDL and upcoming 
local events in Southwest Virginia for 2013. 

John will also have TWO (2) drawings for a FREE registration in his handgun 
carry class valued at $75.00 each. The winners may use their registrations 
to give them or a friend or family member who needs to satisfy his or her 
training requirement for a Concealed Handgun Permit. 

Lawyer and firearms enthusiast Keith Finch of the Creekmore Law Firm invites 
you to come and learn about how anNFA Gun Trust can help you protect your 
privacy, reduce paperwork and protect your family and friends from inadvertently 
violating the law should they come into contact with or posession of your 
lawfully owned automatic, short barreled, or otherwise restricted firearms or AOWs. 
Learn about available options your family would have should you become 
incapacitated or pass away and how an NFA Gun Trust can help reduce the 
risk of legal charges when allowing others to use restricted arms. 

VCDL President Philip Van Cleavewill be speaking about the proposed legislation 
that concerns your Gun Rights in the 2013 General Assembly general session. He 
will also explain the importance of VCDL's Annual Lobby Day at Capitol Square on 
Richmond on January 21st and how you can an do play an integral role in 
advancing and protecting our Gun Rights. 

In as much as this meeting will focus on our 2nd Amendment rights we are 
encouraging attendees to practice"Open Carry". And for those who practice 
"Concealed Carry".....maintain your discretion as you are comfortable! 

Make Plans Today To Protect Your Tomorrow and join us January 8th!! 


************************************************* 
3. MILLER: Handgun hypocrisy 
************************************************* 

From washingtontimes.com: http://tinyurl.com/bvq2cdu 


MILLER: Handgun hypocrisy 
Well-armed activists want the rest of America defenseless 
by Emily Miller 
December 7, 2012 

The loudest advocates of gun control are well protected. President Obama said he wants more laws restricting firearms ownership because, in his hometown of Chicago, “there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns.” With his own armed Secret Service detail, the president doesn’t need to worry about crime. 

Illinois State Sen. Donne Trotter takes the hypocrisy up a notch. On Wednesday, Mr. Trotter was arrested on felony charges after attempting to board a plane at O'Hare International Airport with a loaded .25-caliber Beretta. 

The South Side Democrat, who has been the leading candidate to fill the congressional seat vacated by scandal-plagued Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., claimed that he forgot to take the gun out of his garment bag after working his security job. Illinois is the only state in the union that denies citizens all rights to bear arms, but Mr. Trotter got himself an exception — a special permit to pack heat to and from his side gig. 

Since he was first elected in 1988, Mr. Trotter has voted against legislation that would grant other Illinois citizens the right to concealed carry. He also voted “present” on a bill that would have reduced the penalty on carrying a concealed weapon. In his official biography, he describes himself as “an advocate of gun control” who “ushered in Illinois’ first comprehensive law banning assault weapons.” 

“This is the kind of hypocrisy that fuels the mistrust of politicians by gun owners,” Second Amendment Foundation founder Alan Gottlieb told The Washington Times. The organization has been backing legal challenges designed to force Illinois to recognize carry rights for all residents. 

“Trotter and many other anti-gun Democrats don’t trust people with firearms but flaunt the very laws they want to impose on the rest of us,” said Mr. Gottlieb. After a night in jail, Mr. Trotter is out on bond. He says he’s still running for Congress. 

Meanwhile, NBC Sports‘ Bob Costas continued his national media tour calling for gun bans with arguments that don’t hold up to scrutiny. On Wednesday, he told Fox News, “I don’t see any reason why someone should be able to purchase military-style artillery and body armor and automatic weapons.” 

Though the show’s host, Bill O’Reilly, replied that those were “reasonable positions,” automatic guns are already highly regulated by the federal government. They aren’t used by criminals. A spokesman for NBC Sports did not respond to questions about whether security guards are armed at NBC network broadcast locations. 

Mr. Costas expanded on his theme by saying, “Far more often, bad things happen — including unintentional things — than things where the presence of a gun diminishes or averts danger.” He’s only telling half the story. About 30,000 people are killed by firearms, but guns are are also used to prevent crimes approximately 2 million times a year. 

“There have never been more firearms in civilian possession in America than there are today,” Lawrence Keane, general counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, told The Washington Times. “Yet crime is at its lowest level since the early 1960s. Firearm accidents are at their lowest level since recordkeeping began in 1903. Perhaps Mr. Costas should focus on his area of expertise instead of pontificating on subjects of which he is embarrassingly ignorant.” 

There’s a reason for the weak arguments and hypocrisy. These activists aren’t actually interested in reducing crime, they want more government control over our lives. That’s precisely why the Founding Fathers enshrined our right to keep and bear arms in the Constitution. 


************************************************* 
4. Responses to VA-ALERT: Gun ownership attacked after murder/suicide‏ 
************************************************* 

Jack Doyle emailed me this: 

-- 

Dear Bob Costas, 

Tell me again about still being alive if the enraged football player didn’t have a gun. 

Sincerely, 
Nicole Brown Simpson 


************************************************* 
5. Bob Costas, NBC attacks Americans' Constitutional right of self-defense 
************************************************* 

James Durso emailed me this: 

-- 

From pjmedia.com: http://tinyurl.com/bt2worx 


Bob Costas, NBC Exploit Kansas City Chiefs Tragedy to Attack Americans’ Constitutional Right of Self-Defense 
by Bryan Preston 
December 2, 2012 

By now you’ve probably heard what happened in Kansas City on Saturday. Chiefs player Jovan Belcher committed murder-suicide, ending his own life (on the team’s stadium parking lot) and the life of his girlfriend, Kassandra Perkins. The two leave behind a three-month-old daughter. 

The Chiefs have handled the tragic events with dignity and grace. NBC and Bob Costas have revealed yet again how evil that network and its on-air personalities have become. 

During half-time of the Cowboys-Eagles game tonight, Costas took a moment to acknowledge the tragedy and note that if it takes such an event to “bring sports into perspective” as is always said after a tragedy, then one may never reach the right perspective. Then, Costas offered up his perspective by paraphrasing columnist Jason Whitlock. Whitlock wrote, in reaction to the tragedy: 

Our current gun culture simply ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy, and that more convenience-store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will leave more teenage boys bloodied and dead. 

In the coming days, Belcher’s actions will be analyzed through the lens of concussions and head injuries. Who knows? Maybe brain damage triggered his violent overreaction to a fight with his girlfriend. What I believe is, if he didn’t possess/own a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today. 

That is the message I wish Chiefs players, professional athletes and all of us would focus on Sunday and moving forward. Handguns do not enhance our safety. They exacerbate our flaws, tempt us to escalate arguments, and bait us into embracing confrontation rather than avoiding it. 

How was the “gun culture” to blame for the violent actions of a grown man? Was a gun the only means by which a professional athlete might have killed himself and someone else? Of course not. 

Costas’ remarks constitute exploitation of a tragedy in order to push a political point that Whitlock, Costas, and NBC no doubt already believed, and only used the moment to forward. They all should be ashamed of themselves. But our current media culture is one in which shame does not exist. Neither does the truth. 

What Costas and Whitlock and NBC offered is not “perspective.” It is a lie. It is also a broadside attack on the rights of responsible citizens to equip ourselves to defend ourselves and our loved ones. Will Bob Costas, NBC, and Jason Whitlock assume personal responsibility for every American who would be alive today if they had possessed the means to defend themselves from violent criminals? Of course not. To them, such victims do not even exist. 

As for the game, this lifelong Cowboys fan turned it off after Costas’ political assault on my rights. I will not watch another game on NBC as long as Bob Costas has a job on that network. 


************************************************* 
6. Speak Up: Bob Costas' anti-gun comments 
************************************************* 

From guntalk.com newsletter: 


SPEAK UP: BOB COSTAS' ANTI-GUN COMMENTS 
by Tom Gresham 
December 3, 2012 

NBC's Bob Costas spoke out against gun ownership on Sunday Night Football. 
Tom says: 

I was surprised that Bob Costas (hereafter to be known as Clueless Costas) went on an anti-gun rant at halftime during the December 2nd Sunday Night Football broadcast. He usually, I thought, does better research than that. At least, I thought that before now. Since I don't know the facts of the stories he reports, I have always considered him to be a reliable source, but this venture into knee-jerk reaction without a shred of research makes me wonder if I've gotten the straight story from him on other issues. 

His editorial took the position that if Jovan Belcher had not had a gun, he would not have been able to commit murder or suicide. This is nonsense on the face of it. Fists, feet, knives (ex. the recent murder-suicide in Wyoming) and other tools can and are used to commit murder. In fact, the FBI categorizes all those as instruments of murder in its Uniform Crime Reports. 

To see Clueless Costas blithely skip into the middle of this tragedy with such shallow and demonstrably false assumptions belies his reputation as a heretofore respected reporter. 

The mountain of evidence to contradict his anti-gun assertions looms large and would have been easy to find. Take just two points which belie the charge that the gun drives suicides and murders. 

First, there is the comparison with Japan. That island-nation prohibits most citizens from owning guns. It would be the perfect Petri dish for showing how suicides can be prevented by banning guns. The reality turns that on its head, since the suicide rate in Japan approaches (sometimes exceeds) twice that of the U.S. No guns in Japan, but twice the rate of suicides of the U.S., which has perhaps 300 million guns. 

Second, there is the example in the U.S. of the effect (or lack of effect) on murder rates when people carry loaded guns. Twenty years ago few states had laws permitting citizens to carry loaded firearms for their protection. After Florida passed what is known as "shall-issue" concealed carry (requiring the state to issue a permit to any qualified applicant), almost all states followed. In that 20-year period the number of people with carry permits has grown beyond six million, plus several states which require no permit at all for a person to carry a gun for protection. 

Over a nearly identical time span, the murder rate in the United States has fallen dramatically. There are millions more guns, millions more gun owners, and millions more people carrying guns for protection, but the murder rate has fallen by nearly half. Even if one doesn't believe that the concealed carry movement actually caused this drop, it would be difficult for anyone to ignore that -- at a minimum -- adding millions of guns, gun owners, and concealed carry participants did not increase the murder rate, which is what Clueless Costas would have you believe. 

Should we really be surprised at this? Probably not. Clueless Costas is from New York, has armed security protecting him, and appears to be convinced in the truth of his own ignorance-based bias. Further, he describes himself as a liberal, as he did in a May 26, 2007 opinion piece declaring President Bush to be unqualified for the office. We never are surprised when the clueless elite call attention to themselves by dancing in the blood of innocents. For some reason, I expected more of Costas, though on reflection, I'm not sure why. 

As responsible gun owners, and as members of the Gun Talk Truth Squad where we never just shrug and let lies go unchallenged, what can we do about this widely-broadcast screed? Speak up. 

First step would be to send an email with your thoughts to the NBC, which produced this game. Send a message to NBC and the NFL (one to try is help@profootballtalk.com) as a start. Next, talk about this with your friends. Some of them won't know the facts I've related above, and will react to Costas with "well, that sounds reasonable." The notion that the earth is flat was reasonable until it faced research and scientific fact. The research and the science shows us that more guns in the U.S. equals less crime. 

Respond with cogent comments to every online news story about the Costas rant. Well-mannered comments, backed with specific facts, do change opinions. 

Speak up at every opportunity. Bring the facts to this discussion and you'll often be met with "I didn't know that." Speaking the truth, with the facts to back it up, is what the Gun Talk Truth Squad is all about. 

To stay silent is to agree. To leave this lie unchallenged it to allow it to become the truth. 

Speak up. 


************************************************* 
7. Bob Costas: Young men can't own guns "without something bad happening" 
************************************************* 

Walter Jackson emailed me this: 

-- 

From infowars.com: http://tinyurl.com/b8d8uov 


Bob Costas: Young Men Can’t Own Guns “Without Something Bad Happening” 
                         
NBC Sports broadcaster claims there are no examples of athletes using guns to neutralize dangerous situations 
by Paul Joseph Watson & Alex Jones 
December 5, 2012 

During an appearance on MSNBC’s The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, Bob Costas attempted to prop up his ludicrous claim that young men can’t own guns “without something bad happening,” by asserting that athletes have never used a gun in a positive context, a claim which is easily debunked. 

NBC Sports broadcaster Costas stoked widespread controversy on Sunday night when he attempted to turn the tragic murder-suicide involving Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher and his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins into an argument for gun control. 

Costas told O’Donnell that he was in favor of “more comprehensive gun control legislation” and tried to argue the point by commenting that 65 out of 80 Colts players admitted to owning guns. 

“Even if all those guns were obtained legally, you can’t have 65 guys in their 20′s and 30′s, aggressive young men subject to impulses, without something bad happening,” said Costas. 

“Give me one example of a professional athlete who by virtue of his having a gun took a dangerous situation and turned it around for the better – I can’t think of a single one – but sadly I can think of dozens where by virtue of having a gun a professional athlete has wound up in a tragic situation,” he added. 

Costas failed to name any of the “dozens” of such incidents he claimed proved his point, but we were able to dig up examples of athletes using a gun for self-defense or to stop a crime taking place. 

Costas couldn’t name one, and yet we were able to come up with a couple just from a quick Google search, as well as other examples where athletes would have survived attacks and murders had they been able to defend themselves. 

- In 2005, Baltimore Ravens cornerback Corey Fuller used his .38-caliber revolver to fire at and chase away a gunman who had entered his home in an attempted robbery. 

- Also in 2005, Houston Astros outfielder Luke Scott prevented a potentially violent situation in Houston involving a man asking him for money by displaying his gun. 

- As this Fox News article explains, football players are routinely targeted by criminals and armed thieves, giving them all the more reason to be armed in order to protect their families. 

- In 2007, Washington Redskins’ Sean Taylor was shot dead trying to protect his family after gunmen burst into his Miami home. “Some wonder if he’d be alive today if he’d had a gun nearby to protect himself that night,” reports Vibe. 

Statist host Lawrence O’Donnell then attempted to refute a point made by many in the aftermath of Costas’ comments – that Jovan Belcher could just as easily have strangled or stabbed his wife to death and that he is to blame and not the gun, which is an inanimate object. 

“How many home runs could Babe Ruth hit without a bat,” asks O’Donnell, believing that a comparison between a sports game where only a baseball bat is allowed and real life, where any object can be used to kill a person, is somehow applicable or makes sense in any way – when it clearly doesn’t. 

Far from apologizing for his ludicrous comments, Costas has doubled down, spouting ever more inane nonsense in an attempt to back up his empty argument, such as the claim that athletes have never used a gun in a positive context, which as we document above is completely untrue. 


************************************************* 
8. Excellent video response to Bob Costas' gun control misinformation [VIDEO] 
************************************************* 

Walter Jackson emailed me this: 

-- 

From inforwars.com: http://tinyurl.com/atpkb7n 


************************************************* 
9. Fox points out hypocrisy of Costas' anti-gun rant 
************************************************* 

Walter Jackson emailed me this: 

-- 

From breitbart.com: http://tinyurl.com/dxsqqze 


FOX POINTS OUT HYPOCRISY OF COSTAS' ANTI-GUN RANT 


From AWR Hawkins, Breitbart News: Bob Costas' gun control rant was bad but made worse by one key point -- he lives much of his life with the benefit of armed security. (i.e., men with guns). If you've ever been to an NFL game this point is academic. The number of armed policemen you pass between the gate your seat is incredible. And if you get behind the scenes, in certain corridors, the armed presence can be just as strong (or stronger). Those policeman and security personnel are there to preserve order and to protect their assets, be they football players, football coaches, or the celebrities and news anchors in attendance. In this, Costas is much like other elitists who've recklessly criticized guns in past, all the while living behind a wall of guns for the benefits it brings. 


************************************************* 
10. Bill O'Reilly has Bob Costas on to explain his gun control comments [VIDEO] 
************************************************* 

EM John Pierce emailed me this: 

-- 

From opencarry.org: http://tinyurl.com/alpdy3k 


************************************************* 
11. Steeler's linebacker James Harrison says guns are not the problem 
************************************************* 

EM John Pierce emailed me this: 

-- 

From opencarry.org: http://tinyurl.com/cn5gtrd 


Steeler’s linebacker James Harrison says guns are not the problem 
by John Pierce 
December 6, 2012 

“[Jovan Belcher] did it. And he alone is responsible for it. It has nothing to do with the guns.” 

- James Harrison 

Harrison, who is a self described avid gun collector, made the comments in an interview with USA Today. He made it clear that the bad actions of Belcher will make no difference in his view of the Second Amendment. 

“No. No. No. I have my guns. I’m going to keep my guns. I’m going to use my guns responsibly and go from there.” 

It is good to see that Bob Costas, Jason Whitlock, and their ilk do not speak for the majority of America’s sports heroes. 

Read more at USA Today: http://tinyurl.com/bbkz6ah 


************************************************* 
12. Charles Barkley tells Costas why he carries a gun 
************************************************* 

EM John Pierce emailed me this: 

-- 

From opencarry.org: http://tinyurl.com/bafdt4b 


Charles Barkley tells Costas why he carries a gun 
Posted on December 6, 2012 by John Pierce 

“[I've] carried a gun in my car, every day of my life since I was 21 or 22 … never had to use it … it would take extreme circumstances for me to even touch it.” 

- Charles Barkley 

Basketball legend Sir Charles Barkley was on Costas Tonight Thursday night and he told Bob Costas that he feels safer carrying a gun. He said it gave him a “sense of peace.” 

He went on to note that the Jovan Belcher murder-suicide was not about guns but was about violence against women. 

“I hope people don’t [overemphasize the gun situation. I’m very sensitive to domestic violence because I have a daughter, and that’s just one thing that I cannot accept in any shape or form whatsoever.” 

Read more of Sir Charles’ excellent commentary at Cincinnati.com: http://tinyurl.com/bf2josq 


************************************************* 
13. Jovan Belcher tragedy: blame the man not the NRA [VIDEO] 
************************************************* 

Dale Hawley emailed me this: 

-- 

PJTV covers the Belcher tragedy and some of the history of firearms ownership. 


From youtube.com: http://tinyurl.com/at4dfj3 


PJTV: ZoNation: Jovan Belcher Tragedy: Blame the Man not the NRA 
by Pajamasmedia 
December 6, 2012 

Liberals like Jason Whitlock want you to believe that the NRA killed Kansas City Chiefs player Jovan Belcher and his girlfriend. Zo tells you why the NRA is not the KKK, and reminds you who is really to blame for this murder-suicide, in addition to other tragedies in black communities. 


************************************************* 
14. NFL players: three out of four own guns 
************************************************* 

Walter Jackson emailed me this: 

-- 

From usatoday.com: http://tinyurl.com/bcgke5f 


NFL players: Three out of four own guns 
NFL players say they need to own guns for protection, and that hasn't changed despite the Jovan Belcher shootings. 
by David Leon Moore 
December 7, 2012 

Former NFL running back Thomas Jones was always around guns, long before he became a football-carrying member of that unofficial gun club within the National Football League. 

As a kid, he and his buddies fired guns in the woods in Big Stone Gap, Va. They'd shoot bottles and go hunting. 

His dad had guns. 

Jones bought his first gun his senior year at the University of Virginia, and, as a rookie with the Arizona Cardinals a dozen years ago, he learned quickly that guns were an ingrained part of the NFL culture. 

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Belcher tragedy 

"Most guys when they first come into the league is when they first start to realize they need protection," Jones says. "Because money brings a lot of positive things. But most of the time, it brings more negative things. People don't like you for what you have, for who you are. They don't like you for what you represent. And people will go to any length to take what you have or harm you in some way just because they don't have what you have. If you don't have a firearm to protect you from situations and God forbid something happens to you, you wish you would have a firearm." 

Jones, who retired last season with the Kansas City Chiefs after 12 years in the league, was a big brother to young linebacker Jovan Belcher, who killed his girlfriend, and then himself, last Saturday. 

Yet less than a week removed from the tragic shootings in Kansas City, NFL players aren't ready to give any ground on their belief that carrying guns is not only a right but, in their world, a necessity. Indeed, numerous players told USA TODAY Sports that in their estimation, roughly three-quarters of NFL players owned guns, compared with 40% to 45% of households in the general population, according to the National Rifle Association. 

Though no statistics on NFL gun ownership exist, and league spokesman Greg Aiello called the percentage estimates "a wild guess," even former Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy — widely viewed, even now, as the moral compass of the NFL — says the number of players who armed themselves during his tenure "shocked" him. 

When Dungy, now an NBC analyst, was coaching the Colts, he'd always ask at the first team meeting of the year, "How many of you guys have guns?" Then he would tell the players that they needed to register their weapons in Indiana. 

"I was always shocked at the number of guys who raised their hand. ... That was kind of eye-opening to me. ... (But) it's just a fact of life. These guys had them. ... I think so many of these young guys have been around guns and have seen guns, and they just feel that's part of the landscape for them growing up." 

Like Jones, Belcher owned guns. But Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins, the mother of their three-month-old daughter, and then killed himself with a different gun in front of his coach and general manager in the parking lot of Kansas City's Arrowhead Stadium. 

"I'm not ... trying to tell guys in the league they need to purchase firearms," Jones says. "I'm just saying to be realistic about our lifestyle." 

Wayne LaPierre, chief executive officer for the NRA, dismisses any notion that guns are to blame for the tragedy, or that NFL players are in some way different. 

"It's not a culture of athletes," he says. "It is particular behavior by particular individuals that is no different from the rest of society. We've got to stop making excuses. A murderer is a murderer." 

Jovan Belcher warms up prior to the Oct. 27 game against the Ravens. Ed Zurga, AP    Fullscreen 

Lessons of Taylor's death 

According to numerous players, it's not a secret that the NFL is loaded with firearms. One of the reasons routinely mentioned is protection, and one of the incidents players often cite is the death of Sean Taylor, a Washington Redskins safety who was killed in a home invasion in Miami in 2007. He was 24. 

Redskins kick returner Brandon Banks echoes the mantra that it's all about protection. The third-year player, who declined to say whether he owns a gun, says "70% of the NFL players have guns. Guys get them as soon as they start getting some money, when people start knowing where you live." 

BENEFITS: Belcher daughter eligible for at least $1 million 

Players in other pro sports leagues agree with that sentiment, including in the NBA where former Utah Jazz star Karl Malone, a noted outdoorsman, once put the number of gun owners at "close to 60%." 

But just as in the greater society beyond sports, gun ownership isn't only about protection. For many players and millions of Americans, guns are simply the equipment for another popular sport: hunting. 

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger calls himself "a huge hunter" and says he owns rifles, shotguns and handguns. He estimates the percentage of NFL players who own guns at "over 75%-80%." 

Roethlisberger's teammate, James Harrison, is a gun collector and one of the most avid gun advocates in sports. Harrison reacted to the Belcher story with sadness, but the all-pro linebacker is unapologetic about his passion for firearms. 

"It has nothing to do with the guns," Harrison says. "Somebody goes out and kills somebody with a knife; you going to blame the knife? It's the person who did it who's responsible." 

Redskins wide receiver Josh Morgan no longer owns a gun. But he says he grew up in Washington, D.C., carrying unregistered handguns. He gave up guns "after one of my best friends got killed. That's when I had to stop. When you see so many people get killed and you witness so many deaths and go to so many funerals before you leave high school — and you've got 12, 13, 14 friends die from murder or get stabbed — you get tired of going to funerals. You get tired of crying." 

Morgan says he knows a lot of players who own guns for protection, and he defends their right, even as he chooses not to exercise his. 

"Some people just have nothing to lose," he says. "When you've got people like that, you've got no choice but to protect yourself and protect your family." 

MEMORIAL: Kasandra Perkins remembered for bringing joy 

The NFL's Aiello says the league educates players about guns and weapons every year. Each team conducts an annual mandatory preseason meeting with NFL security, club security and local law enforcement at which gun laws are reviewed and explained. At this meeting, NFL employees are urged not to own guns, according to Aiello. 

Some players have followed that advice. 

"I do not own a gun," says Redskins tight end Logan Paulsen. "It's something my wife and I have discussed. We (the team) are away a lot, so it gives me some peace of mind knowing she could protect herself (if she did have a gun). It also makes me nervous because there are a lot of issues with gun safety." 

Paulsen, who puts the league gun ownership number at "70-80%," realizes that he's "definitely in the minority." 

But Troy Vincent, the NFL vice president of player engagement who played from 1992-2006, disputes that the league has a gun culture, or that players commonly own and collect guns. 

"No. No. I've never. … You'll hear people say, 80%-90%, 20%. How do you know that? We don't ask that question. That's personal information. ... (But) we're not naive by any stretch of the imagination." 

While echoing Aiello's comments that the league does all it can to educate players, Vincent shed tears and became emotional when asked about the Belcher tragedy. 

"A young lady lost her life, and it didn't have to be that way." 

Family and friends said goodbye to Kasandra Perkins, 22, at a funeral Thursday in Blue Ridge, Texas. 

Too eager to arm? 

Because Belcher was a gun owner, a person in his home would have been three times more likely to be involved in a homicide, and five times more likely to have killed himself, according to an article in the New England Journal of Medicine. 

If that Saturday in Kansas City were an average day in America, 32 people were slain with guns and another 54 people were killed by guns in suicides or accidents, according to the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. More than 31,000 people in the USA die in gun-related incidents each year. This year, one of those deaths was the stunning suicide of recently retired NFL superstar linebacker Junior Seau, who had acquired a handgun for protection but, according to his friends, hardly knew how to load it. 

SEAU'S FINAL DAYS: Plagued by sleepless nights 

Whatever the reasons athletes give for gun ownership — or their Second Amendment rights to legally purchase firearms — gun safety advocates continue to be concerned about the link between guns and professional athletes. There's nothing wrong with owning a gun, they say, if the buyer is ready for gun ownership. 

"You have young people with a lot of money, and there may be a quickness in a decision to buy a gun," says Dan Gross, president of the Brady Center. "There's a kind of social norm that exists in certain professional sports around ownership of a gun. It's kind of encouraged. And I think there's a tendency among professional athletes not to look into the right equation in terms of risks versus benefits." 

Not true, says the NRA's LaPierre, who blames the premise of a gun culture in the NFL on the media and anti-gun groups. 

"You've got good Americans who love to play sports, who are disciplined, who are responsible, and they're no different from any other Americans," he says. "Owning guns is a mainstream part of American culture, and it's growing every day." 

Gross says he and his organization aren't trying to ban guns. They seek education and awareness, and they urge potential gun owners to pause and consider that — statistically speaking — placing themselves around guns increases their risks. 

"What we saw with Belcher and Kasandra Perkins was a very clear manifestation of those risks, as was Junior Seau," Gross says. 

LaPierre counters: "The one thing missing in that equation is that woman owning a gun so she could have saved her life from that murderer." 

Other sports leagues 

Just as with the NFL, other pro sports leagues have had their share of gun controversies. 

In December 2009, Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton violated NBA rules when they had unloaded guns in the Washington Wizards' team locker room. Both were suspended for the remainder of the season. But gun ownership — for sport and protection — remains vibrant. 

Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, now a commentator on TNT, says, "Most of the guys I played with over the years always had protection. We've had some players get mugged going home late at night, coming off a road trip or leaving nightclubs. But I've never heard of a situation like (the Belcher shootings) where everything went crazy." 

Barkley, too, says that a tragic aberration like what happened in Kansas City doesn't diminish his right to own a weapon: Having a gun "is a personal choice. It's my personal choice, and I'm not going to change it. I don't care what anybody says." 

NBA veteran and Los Angeles Clippers star Lamar Odom doesn't own a gun, even though he was once held up at gunpoint. 

"I understand there are mixed feelings and mixed emotions about it," he says. "I think it's our right to be able to protect our homes, but I just don't feel the need." 

Major League Baseball has long been associated with a hunting culture. This week, Chicago Cubs manager Dale Sveum revealed that former teammate Robin Yount accidentally shot him in the right ear on a recent quail hunt. And San Diego Padres general manager Josh Byrnes spoke out on guns after one of his pitchers, Andrew Cashner, lacerated a tendon in his right thumb with a knife after a deer hunt this offseason. 

"As a GM, I am concerned," Byrnes said Thursday, while noting that he supports gun control. "We can control things on the job, but away from it, we hope they make the right decisions." 

But Atlanta Braves general manager Frank Wren argues that hunting lends itself to experience with guns. 

"What's different is that the hunting culture for the most part are the most gun-savvy and the most careful and cautious of any group of gun owners," says Wren. "And we're also not talking about handguns. That's a whole other class that we don't see." 

Wren has plenty of experience on his teams with avid hunters, among them recently retired star Chipper Jones and former Braves first baseman Adam Laroche. Wren recalls them often setting up targets under the stadium where the grounds crew stores sand and practicing with bows and arrows. But he says in his 25 years with several franchises, he's never come across issues with players and guns. He says part of that stems from many players coming from Sun Belt states, where guns are often introduced in childhood. 

"The first thing you do as a kid in the South is go take a gun safety course," Wren says. 

Saving lives, or taking lives? 

But just a day after the Chiefs gathered at Belcher's memorial service, players question whether the murder-suicide will have any lasting impact on the league. 

Steelers wide receiver Plaxico Burress, infamous for accidentally shooting himself in a New York City nightclub in 2008, called the Belcher shootings "very, very unfortunate" but isn't sure the tragedy will be a lasting lesson to a gun-heavy league. 

"It will for a little while," says Burress, who served 20 months in prison because he was carrying the gun illegally. "But over time something else will happen and we'll be having the same discussion then. Things like this happen to people every day. It just happened to be Jovan, somebody that we knew." 

Steelers safety and player representative Ryan Clark doesn't own a gun in a locker room where his quarterback estimates that most of his teammates do. He has twice seen gun-related tragedies up close. Clark's freshman year at LSU in 1999, a close friend killed himself with a shotgun blast to the face. 

"Everybody sat around the next day when we found out, wondering what could we have done different. What could we have said to him? You don't see the signs. We never found out why," Clark says. 

He was also a teammate and friend of the Redskins' Taylor, whom he played with from 2004-05 before joining Steelers in 2006. Taylor armed himself with a machete during the home invasion in which he was shot dead. 

"If Sean had a gun, he's probably alive today," Clark says. "I choose not to own one. But guys are targets and they have their families and they have guns in their homes, they want to protect themselves and they have the right to. The law gives them the right to." 

Clark recognizes the difficult calculus, and societal wrenching, over the issue of gun ownership. 

"In that case, Sean Taylor, maybe it saves a life there. But in the next case (Belcher), it takes two lives." 


************************************************* 
15. Gutfeld rips Costas with story about guns saving lives [VIDEO] 
************************************************* 

Richard Kroh emailed me this: 

-- 

Greg Gutfeld on Fox News -The Five explains why "Guns Save Lives" Maybe Greg should get A VCDL honorary membership! - Richard Kroh 


From realclearpolitics.com: http://tinyurl.com/bjtz4tf 


Gutfeld Rips Costas With Story About Guns Saving Lives 
by Greg Gutfeld 
December 8, 2012 


Now this tale not only shows how guns save lives, but it also kills the stereotype, Bob, that libs love to propagate that gun owners are clumsy yokels who collect guns the way sports broadcasters collect toupees. 

Not so, the homeowner handled the situation with compassion, keeping the guy from endangering them and others. Any decent gun owner would say that's how it's done. But this is a logic that escapes people like Bob Costas, who glide among secure skyscrapers, never worrying about trivialities like home invasions. Commentators need no guns when the bodyguard is already packing. If only we all could be on TV with our shiny eyes and thoughtful grins, we wouldn't need guns, just opinions about them. 


************************************************* 
16. Police: Boy, 7, shot to death at Pa. gun store 
************************************************* 

A tragic reminder of the basic gun safety rules: keep guns ALWAYS pointed in a safe direction and keep your finger off the trigger unless ready to shoot. 

Bill Watkins emailed me this: 

-- 

Philip, as much as my heart breaks for this father's loss, my first two questions of him would be (rhetorically of course): 

Why wasn't your firearm properly holstered? When unloading your pistol, did you drop the magazine before racking the slide and visually noting that the chamber was empty? You know, Philip, proper handling of firearms ain't rocket science. 


From salon.com: http://tinyurl.com/cvd6phl 


Police: Boy, 7, shot to death at Pa. gun store 
by Associated Press 
December 8, 2012 

MERCER, Pa. (AP) — Authorities say a 7-year-old boy was shot to death when a gun accidentally went off as his father was getting into his truck outside a western Pennsylvania gun store. 

The boy was shot Saturday morning at Twigs Reloading Den in East Lackawannock Township, 60 miles north of Pittsburgh. Store owner Leonard Mohney says it happened in the parking lot. 

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that the boy was shot when his father’s handgun went off as the man got into the truck while holding the gun. 

Police say 44-year-old Joseph V. Loughrey told them he had emptied the magazine but didn’t realize a bullet was still in the chamber. Seven-year-old Craig Allen Loughrey was shot in the chest and died at the scene. 

State police are investigating the shooting as an accident. 


************************************************* 
17. Spike in gun sales attributed to 'Zombie Apocalypse' 
************************************************* 

Jay Minsky emailed me this: 

-- 

Philip: 

I heard a lot of reasons for the increased firearms sales, but I did not think that the Zombie-Apocalypse was a significant reason. The VCDL membership should get a go laugh from this video and story. 

The web link below is a ABC story on the CDC Zombie-preparedness referenced in the above story. This CDC site was such a hit that in 10 minutes had 30,000 hits and crashed the system. http://tinyurl.com/cl9afz4 

Jay Minsky 


From komonews.com: http://tinyurl.com/d55dvrv 


Spike in gun sales attributed to 'Zombie Apocalypse' 
by Tracy Vedder 
November 30, 2012 

SEATTLE -- Gun sales are booming, and the federal government is warning people to prepare themselves for a "zombie apocalypse." 

Yes, you read that right. The living dead who populate B-movies and television shows are spurring gun sales and a tongue-in-cheek website from a group not normally known for having a great sense of humor -- the Centers for Disease Control. 

The CDC's new blog, titled "Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse," is telling people that if they're ready for zombies, they'll also be prepared for hurricanes, earthquakes and other disasters that are more likely to hit. 

Business has been brisk at Wade's Gun Shop in Bellevue. In fact, nationwide gun sales on Black Friday -- measured by more than 154,000 background checks -- was record breaking. 

"It was the largest number of background checks in a single day," said Dave Workman of the 2nd Amendment Foundation. 

The volume of background checks actually shut down the FBI's system twice. Of course, those record sales aren't entirely due to the zombie craze, but Workman said it played a role. 

"That's the zombie phenomenon," he said. "It has ignited a whole new generation of shooters out there." 

Like gun shops throughout the country, Wade's carries special green-tipped zombie ammunition. 

"Well, they have to be shot in the brain. I believe that's why they separated this out," said John Clarke of Wade's Gun Shop. 

The shop also sells zombie-specific targets and special zombie guns. 

"Put the zombie labeling on it to make it a little more appropriate for shooting zombies," Clarke said. 

Zombie training has become so popular that there are even gun clubs that run zombie-shooting matches. 


************************************************* 
18. Californians buying guns at record rates 
************************************************* 

Walter Jackson emailed me this: 

-- 

From breitbart.com: http://tinyurl.com/b6mlk2b 


CALIFORNIANS BUYING GUNS AT RECORD RATES 
by William Bigelow 
December 7, 2012 

Gun sales, which have already accelerated rapidly this year across the nation, skyrocketed in California for the month of November. 

Normally, Black Friday sees an increase in gun sales, but the figures from this Black Friday compared to last year’s are astonishing; there was a 59% increase in gun sales from 2011 to 2012. For the month of November, there was a 49% increase from 2011 to 2012. 

The FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System ran 981,798 background checks for California gun sales this year by the end of November. This number exceeded the total sales for all of 2011. 

On Black Friday, there were 154,873 calls, 20% more than last year. Gun sales are up to record levels since 2008.

John Eastman, professor and former dean of the Chapman University School of Law, believes "a perfect storm" of factors have led to the increased sales, citing: the strategies employed in the recent election; the chaos engendered by Occupy Wall Street; the federal government’s efforts to regulate gun ownership; economic uncertainty; and talk among politicians of cutting social benefits, which could exacerbate feelings of hostility. 


************************************************* 
19. Burglar calls 911 to save himself from gun-wielding homeowner 
************************************************* 

Jay Minsky emailed me this: 


From news.yahoo.com: http://tinyurl.com/a7cj59v 


Burglar calls 911 to save himself from gun-wielding homeowner 
by Dylan Stableford 
December 6, 2012 

A suspected burglar called 911 after the owner of the home he broke into caught and held him at gunpoint. 

The suspect, Christopher Moore, placed the emergency call in Springtown, Texas, during the botched burglary attempt early Tuesday after James Gerow, the homeowner, and Gerow's son pointed guns at him as he sat in his pickup truck parked in the driveway. 

"I'm out in the country somewhere," Moore told the 911 operator during the 10-minute call. "Some guy's got a gun on me." 

Gerow's wife, Lindy, placed a concurrent call to 911 that confirmed Moore's account. 

"You better come quick," she said, "or my husband's going to shoot him." 

"If he gets out of the truck, shoot him in the legs," James Gerow told his son, according to the Dallas Morning News Crime Blog. "You ain't gotta kill him—just shoot him in the legs." 

When police arrived, both Moore and Lindy Gerow were still talking to 911 dispatchers. 

According to CBS' Dallas-Fort Worth affiliate, Moore was arrested and charged with burglary. He's currently being held on a $35,000 bond. 

************************************************* 
20. Concealed carry permit holder thwarts assault 
************************************************* 

Mark Williamson emailed me this: 

-- 

From wrn.com: http://tinyurl.com/c7poe29 


Concealed carry permit holder thwarts assault 
by WRN Contributor 
December 6, 2012 

Concealed carry paid off in a road rage incident this week. According to Wausau police, An Appleton man was traveling on eastbound Highway 29 heading into Wausau on Tuesday afternoon, when a vehicle he passed accelerated and rammed his vehicle from behind. The driver contacted 911, and the dispatcher advised him to meet the officer at a Menard’s parking lot. 

The man was followed by his attackers, who got out and attempted to beat him and use their keys as a weapon to injure him. That’s when the man pulled his gun, and the attackers backed off. Police said when the officer arrived, the man with the gun was completely cooperative, and will not be charged with a crime. Two Michigan residents, 30-year-old Nicholas Flanigan and 26-year-old Jessica Ratliff, face charges including battery and disorderly conduct. Police don’t know what triggered the road rage incident. 


************************************************* 
21. Mass shooting victims and relatives make a living from the tragedy 
************************************************* 

Thanks to Paul Henick for the link. 

From jovianthunderbolt.blogspot.com: http://tinyurl.com/cscf4rr 


Fallacious 
by New Jovian Thunderbolt 
December 6, 2012 

North Central Idaho quotes this Mauser guy with his slip of admitting to the world that his way of thinking is all about Collectivism. 

Notice that victims or relatives of victims of mass shootings, you invariably have one of them making a career out of it? This guy from Columbine, that kid from VT [PVC: Collin Goddard is who he is referring to. Collin's father has also made a career from that tragedy], that congress critter from the Long Island Express Train shooting 20 years ago [PVC: Carolyn McCarthy]. Sarah Brady. Being a victim is a racket or something. 

Anyway, Mauser pulls a lotta factually challenged boners in that Atlantic article. 

For instance, he is proud that because of Columbine he was able to get a gun-show 'loophole' bill passed in Colorado. Because the underage shooters used an adult to buy their guns at a gun show. If only the law had been in place years before the outrage. Because then... the underage shooters could have used the same adult to buy their guns at a gun show... 

He laments: “I heard the same kinds of statements from some people after Columbine: ‘Well, you know, they had bombs, too.’ The fact is that the deaths were from guns.” Actually, the deaths were from killers. 

Mauser does some amatuer psychology, with the country on the couch being too infantile, next. He wants us to be more like mature Euro countries where the violent crime rate is on the rise (he doesn't note this rise, and I think assumes the opposite. I think he thinks 'there are fewer guns there, it MUST be better in Euro-land...'). Unlike here in America, where the guns are and crime rates are going down. Plus, if we were more Euro-y, he thinks, it would be easier to do the whole confiscation thing. This segues into the collectivism quote. 

Then he says that then: “The people themselves would understand that having guns around puts them in more danger.” Do you have any evidence at all that this is true? Because there is plenty of evidence that it is not true, and there is correlation that it may be the opposite. 

Read the whole thing. It's amazing that apart from the one interview subject that is only a small part of the whole article that the MSM Atlantic actually gets this close to 'our' side on the issue.