ACSL Archives 2017

PLEASE NOTE: We have tried to maintain links where possible,but due to the archival nature of these articles,some links may have changed or be otherwise unavailable.

Gun Controllers Choose to Ignore Cases of Good Guys with Guns

Less than three hours after the tragedy at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) was looking to score political points. As is his custom, Murphy fired off a tweet admonishing his colleagues for their refusal to submit to the gun control lobby’s agenda. However, in the following hours, as more information about the shooting became available, it became clear the event didn’t fit so neatly into Murphy’s preconceived anti-gun narrative.

Reports began to come out that an armed citizen, later identified as NRA Member and former NRA Instructor Stephen Willeford, had engaged the shooter with his own firearm, prompting the killer to flee the scene. With little information and no qualms about denigrating the brave actions of an American hero, the omniscient Murphy tweeted, “Let's be clear - nobody ‘stopped’ this shooting...” At the time Willeford engaged the shooter, there were at least 20 people still alive inside the church. A heart-rending account provided to the Washington Post by David Brown, son of wounded churchgoer Farida Brown, made clear that Farida Brown feared the shooter was not finished killing when Willeford came on the scene.

Murphy’s attempt to dismiss Willeford’s courageous response to the shooting is in keeping with gun control advocates’ longstanding messaging efforts and shows the depths anti-gun activists will sink to bury the facts. According to these gun-control proponents, good guys with guns don’t stop bad guys with guns.

In order to justify this position, gun control activists ignore cases where armed civilians have put a halt to mass violence. Like a perverse Goldilocks, gun controllers will discount cases where a criminal was stopped before they were able to carry out sufficient carnage, and, as in the case of the shooting in Southerland Springs, dismiss a case where the killer was able to exact significant violence before an armed citizen could arrive.

When you look past gun control advocates and much of the media’s biased filtering, there are a number of documented cases where armed citizens have confronted these types of killers and likely saved lives. Here are just a handful:

On August 1, 1966, a madman went to the observation deck of the University of Texas at Austin Tower and began firing at those on the ground, eventually killing 14. During the shooting, several citizens retrieved their personal firearms and returned fire. According to a university effort to compile a complete historical record of the incident, “The ground fire did pin down Whitman, most likely keeping him from killing more people.” One eyewitness told Texas Monthly in 2006, “It seemed like every other guy had a rifle. There was a sort of cowboy atmosphere, this ‘Let’s get him’ spirit.”

On January 16, 2002, a disgruntled former student returned to Appalachian School of Law in Grundy, Va. and shot two school officials. According to an account from student Tracy Bridges printed in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, he and fellow student Michael Gross retrieved firearms from their vehicles and went to confront the shooter. Along with two other students, Bridges and Gross were able to subdue the killer until police could arrive. In his book, The Bias Against Guns, Economist John Lott pointed out that “out of 208 news stories (from a computerized Nexis-Lexis search) in the week after the event, just four stories mentioned that the students who stopped the attack had guns.” 

On December 9, 2007, a man entered the New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colo. after having killed two people earlier in day at a Christian center in Arvada, Colo. The killer was met by volunteer armed church security guard Jeanne Assam. Describing her actions, Assam said, “I took cover. I identified myself. I engaged him. I took him down.” Following the incident, Church Pastor Brady Boyd called Assam a hero and explained, “Three people are needlessly dead, but many more lives could have been lost.” 

On April 17, 2015, a man fired into a crowd of people in Chicago’s Logan Square. John Hendricks, an Uber driver and Right-to-Carry permit holder, drew a handgun and shot the assailant, who collapsed onto the sidewalk. Recalling his experience for the Chicago Tribune, Hendricks explained, “There was a threat to me and I helped somebody in the process as well… It's a positive feeling.” 

On May 5, 2015, a deranged man drove into the parking lot of a fire station in New Holland, S.C. According to a report from WIS-TV, several children and firefighters were in the lot. The man then exited his vehicle with a firearm and shot into the air and at his own automobile. Firefighter Gary Knoll and one of his colleagues, both Right-to-Carry permit holders, drew firearms and confronted the man. Knoll and his colleagues were able to disarm the man and detain him until police could arrive. Speaking to the local media about the importance of exercising the Right-to-Carry, Knoll said, “It saved a life, if not multiple.” 

On May 3, 2017, a man entered the Zona Caliente sports bar in Arlington, Texas, began speaking incoherently, and opened fire. At the time of the shooting, there were more than a dozen people inside the restaurant. A patron, who was also a Right-to-Carry permit holder, shot and killed the shooter, ending the incident. Arlington Police Spokesman Christopher Cook told the Dallas Morning News that the armed citizen was a “hero,” and noted that he “prevented further loss of life.” 

In an interview with NRA, Willeford recalled the moment when he became aware of the gunfire at the church and said, “I kept hearing those shots and I knew every shot might be representing another person getting hit by a bullet.” Acting as fast as he could, Willeford retrieved his rifle, grabbed a handful of ammunition, and raced out his door barefoot towards the church. Anyone who has seen the NRA video, or Willeford’s other interviews, can see the anguish of a man who wishes he could have done even more to protect his community. Maybe Willeford’s heroic response wasn’t enough for Murphy to consider him a good guy with a gun, but the survivors in Sutherland Springs and the decent portion of America likely disagree.

Source: NRA / ILA


Anti-Gun Billionaire George Soros Pumps $18 Billion into His Political Apparatus

This week it was announced that hedge fund billionaire and radical left-wing activist George Soros has infused his Open Society Foundations with a gift of $18 billion. According a New York Times report, Soros funneled the money to the organization over the course of several years. The paper also called the Hungarian immigrant’s gift, “one of the largest transfers of wealth ever made by a private donor to a single foundation,” and pointed out that Open Society is now the second largest “philanthropic” organization in the U.S.

Gun owners will likely find the Times’s characterization of Soros’s political arm generous, given that the organization has routinely targeted Americans’ Second Amendment rights. Further, the group’s global reach has imperiled gun owners throughout the world.

On the domestic front, in 2000, Open Society published a widely circulated report entitled, “Gun Control in the United States.” The publication called for a host of new federal and state gun restrictions.

Gun owners will likely find the Times’s characterization of Soros’s political arm generous, given that the organization has routinely targeted Americans’ Second Amendment rights.

At the federal level, the report recommended the criminalization of private transfers, a ban on affordable handguns, and maintained that many semi-automatic firearms be banned from private purchase.  The report also lauded President Bill Clinton’s efforts to impose a federal licensing system on gun owners. However, the radicals at Open Society contended that Clinton’s policy was not ambitious enough and “on its own would fall short.”

The report recommended that states “should move toward consistent regulatory frameworks based on licensing of firearm owners and registration of guns.” The publication also concluded that states should enact gun-rationing laws and coordinate efforts to enact further gun control.

In the early 2000s, Open Society also gave support to gun control groups such as the Million Mom March, the Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence, New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, and Women Against Gun Violence. Further, the group funded various frivolous lawsuits against the gun industry, including a high-profile case brought by the NAACP.

In recent years, Soros’s anti-gun efforts have been eclipsed by those of another billionaire, former-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. However, the Open Society continues to attack American gun owners.

Open Society has worked closely with the Joyce Foundation and given grant money to their projects. The Joyce Foundation funds a host of anti-gun initiatives and is a chief financier of the handgun prohibitionist organization the Violence Policy Center. In 2013 Open Society granted $150,000 to the Joyce Foundation’s Fund for a Safer Future. According to the initiativeメs materials, their goals include “background checks on all gun sales; [and] bans on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.”

A 2016 interview with one of Open Society’s grantees, Marlon Peterson, provides an idea of Open Society’s current position on the Second Amendment. Peterson said that NRA and the “firearms industrial complex” had, “bastardized the Second Amendment for capital gain at the expense of thousands of American lives every year.” The grantee went on to add, “This nation needs to be bold enough to reconsider our relationship to the Second Amendment.”

Concerning Open Society’s global efforts, the group has a close relationship with international gun control activist Rebecca Peters. An Australian, Peters came to international prominence in 1996 as a campaigner for her country’s gun ban and confiscation regime. Peters went on to be the program director for the Funder’s Collaborative for Gun Violence Prevention, which received funding from Open Society, and then direct the International Action Network on Small Arms. IANSA is a gun control umbrella organization whose members include U.S. gun control groups such as the Brady Campaign and States United to Prevent Gun Violence along with foreign groups like Gun Control Australia.

Beyond Peters, Director of the Control Arms Secretariat Anna Macdonald holds an Open Society fellowship. Control Arms was a leading backer of the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. Further, Open Society Director of Learning and Grant Making Natalie Jaynes is an alumnus of both the Small Arms Survey and Gun Free South Africa.

Soros’s $18 billion contribution to Open Society ensures that the organization will be able to plague gun owners well into the future. To face a foe with such immense resources and a sophisticated political apparatus will require gun rights supporters to be vigilant and to rededicate themselves to NRA’s vital cause.

Source: NRA / ILA


With at least eight people dead and more injured in a truck attack in New York City, the Second Amendment Foundation condemned the hypocrisy of anti-gunners for remaining silent because the suspect did not use a firearm to create mayhem.

“When are the gun control zealots going to admit that the problem we’re facing isn’t guns, its violence,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “While most Americans are alarmed and saddened by Tuesday’s horrible events, the gun control crowd, including Mayor Bill de Blasio, hasn’t immediately started screaming about ‘truck violence’ or ‘truck control.’

“Only when a firearm is used do these extremists focus on the weapon,” he continued. “Nobody’s talking about banning trucks. There hasn’t been a rush to the microphones to demand background checks for people who drive pickups. But if a gun had been this madman’s weapon of choice, you would already be hearing shouts for more restrictions on the Second Amendment.”

Police shot the suspect and he is now in custody. He left a trail of broken bodies in his path before law enforcement managed to take him down…with a gun, Gottlieb noted.

“Our hearts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” Gottlieb said. “And our hope is that in the midst of this madness, people can come together and understand that you cannot blame the tool. It’s the black heart of the individual who commits such a heinous act.

“Tens of millions of law-abiding Americans use firearms responsibly every day,” he observed, “and they also drive along our highways, city streets and county roads without harming a soul. Their driving privileges are never threatened when some lunatic runs over a crowd of people, but let one criminal commit a crime with a gun, and suddenly all of us are slandered.

“The problem isn’t gun violence or truck violence,” he said. “The problem is violence, and we’ve got to deal with this problem together.”

Source: The Second Amendment Foundation (


Hunters Can Share Their Harvest

For more than 25 years, the Hunters Sharing the Harvest (HSH) program has encouraged hunters to share their deer harvest and provide thousands of pounds of venison to Pennsylvania families in need. Since 1991, HSH has distributed 1.2 million pounds of donated venison.

Hunters can donate all or part of a harvested deer by taking it to a participating processor, which will then distribute the ground venison to food banks and pantries. Learn more here.




DCNR and Audubon call the shots, while PGC remains infiltrated and complies.


I. DCNR Green Certification vs Deer Reduction.  In 1998, DCNR entered into an agreement with the Forest Stewardship Council – a German-based environmental organization that was partnered with the International Rainforest Alliance – in which DCNR would pay FSC an annual fee, and in turn FSC would grant DCNR an annual Green Certification Award.  According to this mutually-beneficial scheme, the annual Green Certification Award would give environmentally-minded retail and wholesale customers the impression that lumber from DCNR’s state forests was superior to other sources of wood products, and, therefore, domestic and international sales of DCNR lumber would increase.  Three men (FSC’s regional representative, DCNR’s chief of forestry, and PGC’s chief of wildlife management, who was, himself, not a hunter) conspired to use this opportunity to permanently reduce the deer herd. The trio included a provision in the DCNR/FSC green certification agreement that the Game Commission would need to comply with herd reduction in order for DCNR to be granted the annual award.  While in reality this was not the case but simply a ruse by the three men, they succeeded in convincing the governor, who adjusted the Commission’s board of game commissioners and executive staff toward achieving herd reduction.  Therefore, herd reduction was initiated for two reasons: for DCNR money and for an anti-deer, environmental agenda.  This scheme soon proved to be a socioeconomic disaster for the state.  The Legislative Budget and Finance Committee determined that as of 2011 the annual DCNR gain in revenue from the green-certification/deer-reduction scheme was about $1.2 million per year, while the cost to Commonwealth economic activity – primarily to family businesses and rural communities – was a minimum of $501.6 million per year. The LB&FC further calculated that a minimum of $40 million in annual tax revenue is being lost as a result of the deer-reduction program -- $25 million in lost state tax revenue and $15 million lost annually in local taxes.  By 2017, these annual impacts had increased to $1.16 billion in losses to our economy and $92.5 million in tax losses.


II. DCNR’s Old Growth Forests. In 2004, DCNR along with The Nature Conservancy established 550,000 acres of State Forests plus 1-2 mile buffers as 400-500-year-old old-growth forests.   DCNR seeks the permanent near-elimination of deer and human development on these lands.  According to DCNR’s published plan, “The proposed old-growth forest must be resurrected from fragmented and structurally homogeneous second-growth forests that are subject to anthropogenic disturbances.”  In other words, human encroachment such as hunting, energy development, and cabins are intended to be minimized or eliminated.  Most importantly, their plan requires the dramatic and permanent reduction of the deer population: “Reducing Pennsylvania’s deer population will  require a long-term political process.  This will not be easy.” For more than a hundred years, the goal was to increase deer….”  PGC is complying with DCNR’s request for high annual antlerless allocations plus high DMAP allocations. According to DCNR, in 2002 32% of all DCNR state forest stands were included in the old-growth system.  Only 2% were listed in the 0-10-year age class – the age class most valuable to deer, grouse, and many other wildlife species -- and DCNR’s policy has been to fence these early-stage forests from access by deer.  DCNR projects that by 2140 the old-growth system will have been increased from 32% coverage in 2002 to 55% of all state forest stands.  This is an unacceptable policy that will degrade deer, grouse, and wildlife populations with catastrophic impacts to sport hunting and rural economies for centuries.


III. Infiltration by Fringe Environmentalists. Before leaving the agency, PGC’s chief of wildlife management hired three NC State University students who had all been trained on a 5-square-mile agricultural demonstration farm in Maryland called Chesapeake Farms.  They were trained not as conventional wildlife biologists, but, instead, on methods to reduce deer in order to decrease impacts to farm crops. PGC hired them to expand their training to a statewide level by permanently reducing the state’s deer herd. They have accomplished their task and remain employed by PGC.  Further, two successive presidents of Audubon who were instrumental in collapsing the state’s deer herd are now positioned as Secretary of DCNR and as an executive in PFBC who is poised to assume leadership of that agency. At this time, merger of PGC into PFBC and especially into DCNR would place all three of Pennsylvania’s conservation agencies into the hands of Audubon.

IV. Conservation vs Preservation.  There are two fundamental and diametrically opposed natural resources management philosophies.  Conservation is defined as the wise management and use of natural resources.  This multiple-use approach has been a staple of the Commonwealth’s conservation agencies (DCNR, PGC, and PFBC) for generations, providing forest products, mining and energy development, hunting and fishing, cabin ownership, and other recreational activities for the state’s 12.8 million citizens.  Conversely, preservation is a hands-off ideology that sets aside large tracts of land to exist undisturbed by human intervention.  In 2002, DCNR (with support by private foresters and environmental organizations including The Nature Conservancy, International Rainforest Alliance, and Audubon) embarked on a centuries-long mission to preserve a projected 55% of state forest stands within its 2.4-million-acre state forest system.  The choice between these two philosophies that is now made by legislators and the governor – either to manage Pennsylvania’s forests for “old trees” or for “abundant wildlife” -- will dramatically shape the social and economic future of Pennsylvania.  Passage of HB 1483 represents the tipping point for Pennsylvania’s natural resources management future and the socioeconomic stability of rural communities.


From: John Eveland

New information about ticks, Lyme disease in Pennsylvania

In early June a few years ago, after returning from Elk County, I found a tiny tick embedded in my arm, and I carefully pulled it out with the help of tweezers. It gave me the willies to think the thing had been chewing on my skin, but since I knew it had been there for no more than eight hours or so, I told myself not to worry about it.

Everything I had read about deer ticks spreading Lyme disease up till then told me that unless the tick had been attached to me for a day or perhaps two, it would not infect me with the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

I didn’t see a doctor and I didn’t take doxycycline. Many, many sportsmen could tell you a similar story.

But now experts are telling us that much of what we thought we knew about ticks and Lyme disease is wrong. And sportsmen need to know – especially here in Pennsylvania, which by far leads the country in Lyme disease cases.

For instance, Dr. Nevena Zubcevik, attending physician at Harvard Medical School and co-director of Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, recently shared the latest findings that she and her colleagues have made on the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease, in particular on the 10 to 15 percent of patients who suffer long-term symptoms.

You have just gotta read what she said. See the story at She pointed out that recent research debunks several commonly held beliefs about the transmission and treatment of tick-borne diseases. This caught my eye:

“The conception that the tick has to be attached for 48 hours to inject the bacteria is completely outdated,” she said. “There are studies that show that an attachment of 15 minutes can give you anaplasmosis, 10 minutes for the Powassan virus, and for the different strains of Borrelia burgdorferi, we have no idea.”

Dr. Zubcevic said the notion that children, infants, or pregnant women should not be given doxycycline is also outdated. “Dermatologists have prescribed doxycycline to kids for years to treat acne; why not for such a debilitating disease?”

She also said the two-day course of doxycycline, often prescribed for people who find a tick embedded on their body, has little or no prophylactic value. “It should be 100 to 200 milligrams of doxycycline twice a day for 20 days, regardless of the time of engorgement,” she said. “It is not a two-day thing.”

Source:By Jeff Mulhollem


Gun Banners Forward Ambitious Anti-Gun Agenda

Gun control advocates are nothing if not opportunistic. With recent events again focusing the public’s attention on the criminal misuse of firearms, anti-gun members of Congress have dusted off longstanding proposals that would burden innocent Americans at every turn. Never mind that the proposals would have had no effect on the criminals they purport to address. Instead, the object remains their long-term commitment to the idea that firearm ownership among common law-abiding Americans must be curtailed, derailed, and ultimately, ended.

The list of recent bill introductions is instructive.  “Universal background checks,” de facto semi-auto bans, removing protections against junk lawsuits to bankrupt the firearms industry, banning magazines, waiting periods, and even basing firearm prohibitions on incomplete evidence.  All of this in the name of protecting against criminal activity when it’s clear that criminals will simply ignore the new restrictions with the same regularity as the old ones.

Gun control advocates know many of their strongest allies are the increasingly activist and politically-motivated judges who populate courts throughout the country. Thus, one of the most ambitious pieces of legislation is the misleadingly titled “Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act,” currently pending as S. 1939  (Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-CT) and H.R. 3984 (Rep. Adam Schiff, D-CA). 

This legislation would repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), an equal justice provision in its own right. The PLCAA was a reaction to a coordinated series of lawsuits designed to litigate the firearms industry into oblivion by holding law-abiding gun manufacturers and dealers responsible for the criminal acts of unaffiliated third parties. 

And while its critics howl that the PLCAA grants the firearm industry an unprecedented shield, it was actually the legal theories advanced in these suits that were the real novelty. There’s no principle of law that would hold a baseball bat manufacturer liable for the acts of a bat-wielding assailant or an automobile dealer liable for damages caused by the driver of a robbery get-away car when neither the manufacturer nor the dealer had any relationship to the criminal. But that didn’t stop the litigants from hoping the courts would create a special rule for the gun industry or at least allow the cases to go on long enough to bleed the defendants dry through litigation costs. Without the PLCAA, the very existence of the domestic firearms industry would be jeopardized, which is why it repealing it remains the highest priority for gun banners. 

Another perennial favorite of the gun control crowd is the concept of “universal” background checks, which seeks to interpose the government (and expensive fees) into every exchange of firearms, including between trusted neighbors, close friends, and even family members. Anti-gun Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) is carrying the torch this time with S. 2009.  Murphy told the media he hoped the mere introduction of the bill, which he admitted had little chance of passage, would nevertheless “strike fear” into supporters of the Second Amendment. It’s telling that would be his goal, rather than striking fear into the criminals who actually misuse guns and who would be completely unaffected by his bill.

We have already reported on Rep. Elilzabeth Esty’s (D-CT) so-called “large capacity” magazine ban, which would treat the same magazines most law-abiding citizens have in their pistols as contraband, subjecting their possessors to a possible 10-year stint in federal prison. How could something so many millions of upstanding Americans possess without incident deserve such harsh treatment? Ask Rep. Esty. 

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) have also introduced legislation to ban bump-fire stocks with S.1916 in the Senate and H.R. 3999 in the House. The proposed bills demonstrate that they would reach considerably beyond bump stocks and threaten almost any part or accessory that would allow the operator of a semi-automatic firearm to fire more quickly. Neither bill has a grandfather provision, meaning they would retroactively turn Americans who obtained their parts or accessories lawfully and in good faith into federal felons. 

Another recent gun control bill simply rehashes an idea that been around since the days when gun controllers were openly advocating for handgun bans. Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced H.R. 4018 to impose a three-day waiting period on the sale or “borrowing” of a handgun, whether between private parties or federal firearm licensees and private parties.  

Gun control advocates used to argue that waiting periods allowed local officials to run background checks on prospective purchasers, but that justification went out the window when the National Instant Criminal Background Check System came online in 1998. Then the argument shifted to a supposed “cooling-off” period for people who might buy a firearm in the heat of an angry moment, intending to do mischief with it. Of course, that rationale never made sense in the case of people who already owned firearms and who were still subject to the same wait. These days, it’s clear waiting periods are just another arbitrary hurdle between Americans and the exercise of their Second Amendment rights.

Still other bills seek to make firearm purchases by non-prohibited individuals subject to the discretion of the U.S. Attorney General (H.R. 4057, Rep. Peter King, R-NY) and to deny firearm transfers to people based on incomplete evidence, such as arrests without final dispositions (S. 1923, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-CT, and H.R. 3464, Rep. James E. Clyburn, D-SC). These bills show contempt not just for the Second Amendment but for basic notions of fairness and due process.

All of this just goes to show that even with pro-gun majorities in Congress and a pro-gun White House, legislative assaults on the right to keep and bear arms continue. The ultimate goal is neither crime control nor holding evildoers accountable, it’s to chip away at the right to keep and bear arms until it becomes out of reach to the average American. “The ground is shifting,” anti-gun Sen. Murphy insists, “but you need legislation like this to rally people to the side of those who want change and against those who don’t want change.”  

We’ve already heard that type of rhetoric in American politics. So make no mistake. If you believe in your firearms freedom, maintain eternal vigilance and continue to make your voice heard loud and clear in the democratic process.

Source: NRA / ILA


Everytown and Hollywood Launch New Campaign Against Pro-gun Legislation

In the wake of the still-unfolding Harvey Weinstein scandal, one might have thought that America would receive a brief reprieve from Hollywood’s ceaseless moralizing. However, on October 18, 2017, Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety, actress Julianne Moore, and handful of other entertainers launched a new effort aimed at NRA and the right to keep and bear arms.

Dubbed #RejectTheNRA, the Bloomberg orchestrated campaign urges the public to contact their elected representatives to oppose H.R. 3668, the Sportsman’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act (SHARE Act) and H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act. Specifically, an Everytown YouTube video featuring the aforementioned celebrities asks viewers to text REJECT to 64433 in order to receive an automated phone call from the gun control group which will then connect the sender to their congressman after a recorded script tells them to oppose pro-gun legislation in the Congress.  Of course, it’s entirely up to the caller what to tell their congressman once connected.  

The Everytown video provides talking points for the constituent to repeat once they are connected to the congressman’s office, including baseless assertions about the purported dangerousness of the bills. For instance, the video includes one entertainer contending that the SHARE Act “would make mass shootings even more deadly than they already are.”

Suppressors do not make firearms quiet, they merely reduce the sound of a gunshot by about 30 decibels. An AR-15 equipped with a suppressor is still about as loud as a jackhammer. Earlier this month, the Washington Post fact-checked similar statements on this topic made by Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine and issued Kaine Two Pinocchios for his misleading remarks. The Post called the idea that suppressors make guns quiet “a movie myth,” which might explain some of Hollywood’s incredible ignorance on the matter.

Another celebrity carelessly asserts that “concealed carry reciprocity will make our communities less safe.” By examining permit revocation data, it has been determined that Right-to-Carry permit holders are among the nation’s most law-abiding demographics. Moreover, no legitimate study has shown that concealed carry laws lead to an increase in crime.

As a veteran in grassroots politics, NRA encourages vigorous participation in the democratic process. At the same time, however, public policy debates should be driven by the facts, not celebrity-driven emotion.  We urge NRA members and supporters to reach out to their Member of Congress and Senators to express their strong support of Right-to-Carry reciprocity and the SHARE Act. You can call your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators at 202-224-3121.  

Source: NRA / ILA


Hiking in Pennsylvania: Enjoying the Journey and the Destination

The Pennsylvania outdoors provides hiking enthusiasts and novices, families and solo trekkers, wildlife watchers and waterfall chasers, with many opportunities to enjoy the moment and make memories in the outdoors.

Pennsylvania has more than 11,000 miles of trails, and spring is one of the best times to enjoy them.

“Hiking is affordable, family-friendly and can be rambling or strenuous, depending on your preference,” DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn said.  “For those who would prefer to start out with a guided hike, look for opportunities at the end of this month during Hiking Week from May 25 through June 2.”

DCNR partners with the Keystone Trails Association to offer organized hikes during Hiking Week that can be viewed on a calendar of events.

One of the best things about hiking is that it can usually be done close to home. Almost 6,000 local parks in Pennsylvania are listed on the Good for PA website, and many of them feature trails.

In addition, hiking is great exercise! It’s a powerful cardio workout that exercises almost every part of your body. It’s also good for reducing stress. Hiking in nature clears your mind, boosts your mood, and provides an overall sense of accomplishment when you reach your destination.

Many Pennsylvania state parks and forests provide great hiking experiences. Here are several trails in state parks and forests known to help hikers enjoy their journey and destination:

West Rim Trail in Tioga State Forest

The West Rim Trail is a 30-mile hiking trail located adjacent to the Western Rim of Pennsylvania's Grand Canyon. The northern section of the canyon is about 800 feet deep and about 2,000 feet from rim to rim.

The exposed rock is estimated to be more than 350 million years old. Most of the important geologic process which formed the canyon as it now exists occurred less than 20,000 years ago.

The trail offers spectacular views of the canyon. In some spots, the trail follows the very rim of the canyon, so please watch your step!

Pole Steeple Trail in Pine Grove Furnace State Park and Michaux State Forest

The Pole Steeple Trail starts in Pine Grove Furnace State Park and ends in Michaux State Forest. The trail begins at the Pole Steeple parking lot, along the Railroad Bed Road by Laurel Lake, and proceeds up Piney Mountain to the rocky overlook.

The steep .75-mile climb takes you to a beautiful white and maroon colored quartzite rock outcropping where you can view the entire park.

The Pole Steeple Trail is the main trail used to reach the summit, but there is also a longer trail which heads out around the cliffs to the south side. Unlike the shorter Pole Steeple trail, you won't have to climb up any rocks to get to the top.

Mountain View Trail at Blue Knob State Park

Blue Knob State Park is named for its majestic dome-shaped mountain. Situated on a spur of the Allegheny Front and overlooking the scenic Ridge and Valley Province to the east, Blue Knob has spectacular views.

Mountain View Trail is a multi-use trail in the wilderness part of the park. The trail begins a short distance from the curve on Three Springs Trail. The trail makes a short, 0.9-mile “look out” loop before crossing the Three Springs Trail again.

The “look out” loop is suitable for the whole family, but the remainder of the trail is recommended only for adults in good hiking condition.

For more stunning vistas and overlooks, see DCNRメs interactive map.

Falls Trail at Ricketts Glen State Park

At Ricketts Glen State Park there are 26 miles of trails and 22 named waterfalls. The waterfalls are in the Glens Natural Area -- a National Natural Landmark -- and can be viewed from several hiking trails.

The 7.2-mile Falls Trail is considered “most difficult hiking.” To see most of the waterfalls, you can take a 3.2-mile loop by going on Highland Trail and the Glen Leigh and Ganoga Glen sides of the trail.

The trails follow along beautiful waterfalls ranging in heights from 11 feet to 94 feet. The scenery is well worth the effort; however, the terrain is rocky, can be slippery and descends steeply on both the Ganoga and Glen Leigh sides.

Great Gorge and Meadow Run Trails at Ohiopyle State Park

Located on the southern reaches of the Laurel Ridge, Ohiopyle State Park encompasses approximately 20,500 acres of rugged natural beauty and serves as the gateway to the Laurel Highlands.

There are 79 miles of trails at the park that offer a wide variety of hiking trails from short day hikes to challenging backpacking.

The Great Gorge and Meadow Run trails – among several others -- showcase the beautiful falls throughout the park.

The Great Gorge Trail is a moderately trafficked, more difficult out-and-back trail that features a gorgeous waterfall. This trail begins at the Cucumber Picnic Area and crosses several bridges and roads.

The Meadow Run Trail is an easier 3-mile hike, with trailheads near the ranger station. The pleasant hike to Cucumber Falls and the Cascades will not disappoint!

Turkey Path Trail at Leonard Harrison State Park

Trails at Leonard Harrison State Park lead to beautiful vistas and waterfalls, but traverse very rugged terrain, pass close to many steep cliffs, and may have slippery surfaces.

The Turkey Path Trail is a 2-mile, down-and-back trail, and DCNR rates it at “most difficult hiking.”

This difficult trail descends one mile to the bottom of Pine Creek Gorge.

The top half of the trail descends through a series of switchbacks to a view of Little Four-Mile Run at 0.5 miles, then on a short distance to the first waterfall.

The trail continues downward along narrow switchbacks and wooden decking, bridges, and steps.

The lowest parts of the trail are along a series of waterfalls, and the trail ends at the Pine Creek Trail.

Multiple Trails at Bald Eagle State Park

A network of 14.5 miles of hiking trails at Bald Eagle State Park guides hikers through a variety of habitats that offer scenic views and wildlife watching opportunities.

Foster Joseph Sayers Lake at the park is a haven for wildlife, including nesting bald eagles.

Old field habitat provides homes for bluebird, monarch butterfly, woodchuck, and cottontail rabbit, while squirrel and downy woodpecker inhabit the woodlots. A mature oak and hickory forest covers the Bald Eagle Mountain and provides homes for porcupine and turkey.

You can enjoy butterflies while hiking on the 1.5-mile, relatively easy Butterfly Trail. The 2-mile, easy Woapalanne Path provides opportunities to see waterfowl and eagles.

Trails at Worlds End State Park

The extensive forest cover, hemlock valleys, and mountainous terrain of Worlds End State Park in Sullivan County, provide ideal habitat for “big woods” wildlife.

The patient observer can find bobcat, coyote, and river otter. More than 200 species of birds have been recorded, including northern goshawk, yellow-bellied flycatcher, and white-throated sparrow.

More than 20 miles of hiking trails can provide you with a fun experience in the wilderness, including Double Run Nature Trail, which is a 1.2-mile, more difficult loop; as well as the longer Link Trail, which is 7 miles of more difficult hiking.

Quehanna Trail in Parker Dam State Park and Moshannon and Elk State Forests

The Quehanna Trail is a 75-mile loop hiking trail in the Pennsylvania Wilds. The trail passes through some of the most wild and beautiful country Pennsylvania has to offer.

Hiking the full loop can take five to six days, and the vistas found throughout the trail are worth seeing.

Nearly 50,000 acres, the Quehanna Wild Area covers parts of Cameron, Clearfield, and Elk counties. This protected wildlife area has been named an Important Bird Area by the Pennsylvania Audubon Society and is home to several species of birds and other animals including elk, deer, and coyotes.

For more wildlife viewing trail opportunities, see DCNRメs interactive map.

Boulder Field Trail at Hickory Run State Park

Hickory Run Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park is a striking boulder-strewn area and is a National Natural Landmark. The field is 400 by 1,800 feet and at least 12 feet deep. Some of the boulders are as big as 25 feet in diameter.

The state park has 44 miles of hiking trails, three state park natural areas, and miles of trout streams. The Boulder Field Trail is 3.5 miles long and is considered “more difficult.” Bears, owls, white-tailed deer, turkeys, snowshoe hares, and ruffed grouse are sometimes encountered along the trail. Hikers should allow four to five hours for a roundtrip trek. 

Old Loggers Path at Loyalsock State Forest

The Old Loggers Path is a 27.1 mile-long circuit trail located in northeastern Lycoming County. The trail is located entirely on state forest lands that had formerly belonged to the Central Pennsylvania Lumber Co.

The trail layout has taken advantage of the engineering expertise of the early logging railroaders as it follows the grades. The highlights of the trail are the many cuts and fills on the grades, Rock Run (one of the most stunning streams in Pennsylvania), and the vistas that look to the McIntyre Wild Area.

Old Loggers Path is mentioned in “Ghost Lumber Towns of Central Pennsylvania,” a historical logging railroad book.

For more natural areas to explore, visit DCNRメs website.

No matter where you hike or why, it’s important to stay safe. Remember to:

  • Check the weather before you hike to avoid storms
  • Tell someone where you are going and when you will return; a cell phone can be useful for calling for help, but many sections of the parks do not have cell phone coverage
  • Carry drinking water to stay hydrated
  • Wear sturdy shoes to protect your feet
  • Carry the proper safety equipment, like a first aid kit and a poncho
  • Stay on the trail, so you’ don’t get lost or damage fragile habitats
  • Observe wildlife from a safe distance


For more information about where to hike, visit DCNRメs hiking webpage and Explore PA Trails.

Source: PA DCNR


Court's Commonsense Conclusion: "There Was a Gun" Isn't Enough to Justify Issuing a Restraining Order


The Supreme Court of North Dakota confirmed this week that simply possessing a handgun while on one’s own private property cannot support a finding of “disorderly conduct” under the state’s disorderly conduct restraining order law. The decision is Keller v. Keller, 2017 ND 119 (N.D. May 16, 2017).

Karen Keller is married to Chad Keller. They live together with Chad’s children from a previous relationship on a rural property outside of Bantry (pop. 14, as of the 2010 census) in McHenry County, North Dakota.

On August 14, 2016, Nichole, Chad’s ex-wife and the mother of the children, had emailed Chad about picking up the kids. Chad responded that the children did not want to go with her. Nonetheless, Nichole and a friend, Rachael, later drove out to the Keller property, stopping short of the driveway. Nichole did not initially get out of the car.

Karen did not recognize the vehicle and came out of the house to see who it was. When Karen turned to go back inside, Rachael and Nichole saw that Karen had been holding a handgun behind her back. The visitors remained some 200 feet away from Karen, and Karen did not leave the residential property. It was undisputed that Karen did not raise or point the gun at anyone, or make any threatening, abusive or violent statements. (It seems Karen and Nichole did not speak to one another at all during the encounter.) After talking with her child, Nichole left with Rachel.

Nichole called the police. A deputy concluded there was no cause to file charges as nothing in Karen’s conduct violated statutory limitations relating to firearms. Nichole then sought and obtained a one-year disorderly conduct restraining order against Karen, on the basis that she felt fearful for her life because of the gun. 

The court issuing the restraining order ruled that the mere presence of a firearm was enough: “[T]here was a gun. [Karen] brought it out on the property. And it’s obvious that Nichole was very scared. And she testified that she is still scared. And to me, that is the definition of gestures that are intended to adversely affect the safety, security, or privacy of another person…”

North Dakota, however, has a statutory definition of “disorderly conduct” in the context of a restraining order. Pursuant to N.D. Cent. Code § 12.1-31.2-01, a judge may grant an order only if there are “reasonable grounds to believe” that a person has engaged in “disorderly conduct,” defined as “intrusive or unwanted acts, words, or gestures that are intended to adversely affect the safety, security, or privacy of another person.” Significantly, this definition expressly excludes any “constitutionally protected activity.”

Karen appealed the issuance of the order, claiming the court was wrong in finding that disorderly conduct existed. She argued that it was not reasonable for someone to be afraid of another person for simply holding a weapon in a non-threatening manner. Further, she pointed to the exception for conduct – like the right to keep and bear arms – protected under federal and state constitutions. 

Karen testified she carried a handgun whenever an unknown vehicle arrived at the property. The legal brief she filed with the court indicated she did not know or trust Rachel, and that Nichole had allegedly threatened violence against Karen in the past.

A unanimous, five-member panel of the Supreme Court of North Dakota invalidated the order. The court below had erred in not addressing whether Karen’s actions were constitutionally protected and, if they were, by not excluding evidence of the activity as required by state law. In fact, “Karen Keller’s conduct … was constitutionally protected. Nothing in the record suggests her conduct violated the statutory limitations of possessing a firearm… No evidence exists that the disorderly conduct was anything but possession of the gun, and nothing in the record suggests Karen Keller’s actions went beyond her constitutional right to possess a handgun on her private property.” The only evidence alleged as “disorderly conduct” was constitutionally protected activity that had to be excluded from the court’s consideration, so nothing remained to support the restraining order.

This outcome is entirely consistent with the law, with common sense and with reality. The core of the Second Amendment is the fundamental, individual right to possess and carry a firearm to defend oneself and one’s family. Karen Keller lived in a rural area some distance away from the nearest city, and made it a rule to carry a firearm when unfamiliar persons dropped by. In this particular encounter, she made no threats, did not display her weapon in an aggressive or menacing way, and stayed close to her residence at all times. Millions of Americans keep a gun at home for the same reason – because the 
police canメt always be there to stop a burglary or home invasion or other crime as it unfolds.   

To decide – as the court of first instance did – that possessing a gun on one’s own property, without more, amounts to “disorderly conduct” is directly at odds with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, and equates mere gun possession with lawlessness. As we know, the 
overwhelming majority of gun owners are not criminals and use their lawfully possessed firearms responsibly. Unfortunately for Karen Keller, though, she had to go through a lengthy and likely expensive legal appeal process before her rights were vindicated.

Source: NRA / ILA


Rep. Rob Bishop Introduces the "Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act"

On Wednesday, May 24, 2017, Chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources Rob Bishop (R-UT) introduced H.R. 2620, the "Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act." This bill would remove ATF's authority to use the "sporting purposes" clauses in federal law in ways that could undermine the core purpose of the Second Amendment. Under Chairman Bishop’s legislation, all lawful purposes – including self-defense – would have to be given due consideration and respect in the administration of federal firearms law.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in
District of Columbia v. Heller that the core purpose of the Second Amendment is self-defense. Nevertheless, many federal laws that regulate the importation, possession and transfer of firearms measure the lawful utility of firearms based on their usefulness for so-called "sporting purposes."   

 The term "sporting purposes" is undefined by federal statute and has been subject to several reinterpretations by the ATF and its predecessor agency.  Anti-gun administrations have exploited the lack of a clear definition of “sporting purposes” to bypass Congress and impose gun control through executive fiat. The most recent (and perhaps most infamous) example of this was the Obama administration’s attempt to ban a highly popular form of ammunition for the AR-15, America’s most popular rifle. 

H.R. 2620 would put a stop to this for good and accomplish the following essential reforms to federal firearms laws:

Eliminate ATF's authority to reclassify popular rifle ammunition as "armor piercing ammunition." The federal law governing armor piercing ammunition was passed by Congress to target handgun projectiles, but Obama’s ATF used the law to ban common and popular rifle ammunition, including targeting M855/SS109 5.56x45 ammunition in 2015.

Provide for the lawful importation of any non-NFA firearm or ammunition that may otherwise be lawfully possessed and sold within the United States. Over the years ATF has used the current discretionary "sporting purposes" standard to deny the importation of firearms that would be perfectly legal to manufacture, sell, and possess in the United States.

Protect shotguns, shotgun shells, and certain rifles from arbitrary classification as "destructive devices." Classification as a destructive device subjects a firearm to the registration and taxation provisions of the National Firearms Act (NFA) and creates a ban on possession of such firearms in some states.

Broaden the temporary interstate transfer provision to allow temporary transfers for all lawful purposes rather than just for "sporting purposes."

NRA would like to thank Chairman Bishop for his steadfast support of the Second Amendment and the introduction of H.R. 2620.

Please contact your U.S. Representative and ask him or her to cosponsor and support H.R. 2620, the "Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act."  You can call your U.S. Representative at 202-225-3121, or click here to
Take Action now.

Source: NRA / ILA


New information about ticks, Lyme disease in Pennsylvania

In early June a few years ago, after returning from Elk County, I found a tiny tick embedded in my arm, and I carefully pulled it out with the help of tweezers. It gave me the willies to think the thing had been chewing on my skin, but since I knew it had been there for no more than eight hours or so, I told myself not to worry about it.

Everything I had read about deer ticks spreading Lyme disease up till then told me that unless the tick had been attached to me for a day or perhaps two, it would not infect me with the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

I didn’t see a doctor and I didn’t take doxycycline. Many, many sportsmen could tell you a similar story.

But now experts are telling us that much of what we thought we knew about ticks and Lyme disease is wrong. And sportsmen need to know – especially here in Pennsylvania, which by far leads the country in Lyme disease cases.

For instance, Dr. Nevena Zubcevik, attending physician at Harvard Medical School and co-director of Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, recently shared the latest findings that she and her colleagues have made on the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease, in particular on the 10 to 15 percent of patients who suffer long-term symptoms.

You have just gotta read what she said. See the story at She pointed out that recent research debunks several commonly held beliefs about the transmission and treatment of tick-borne diseases. This caught my eye:

“The conception that the tick has to be attached for 48 hours to inject the bacteria is completely outdated,” she said. “There are studies that show that an attachment of 15 minutes can give you anaplasmosis, 10 minutes for the Powassan virus, and for the different strains of Borrelia burgdorferi, we have no idea.”

Dr. Zubcevic said the notion that children, infants, or pregnant women should not be given doxycycline is also outdated. “Dermatologists have prescribed doxycycline to kids for years to treat acne; why not for such a debilitating disease?”

She also said the two-day course of doxycycline, often prescribed for people who find a tick embedded on their body, has little or no prophylactic value. “It should be 100 to 200 milligrams of doxycycline twice a day for 20 days, regardless of the time of engorgement,” she said. “It is not a two-day thing.”

Source: Jeff Mulhollem from PA Outdoor News


There’s an effort afoot to save PA’s hellbenders

State Sen. Gene Yaw, R-23rd District, would like to introduce colleagues at the Capitol to his slippery, spongelike friends and students who care about them.

“They are a natural barometer of water quality and they live where the water is clean,” the senator said, recalling days as a youngster catching hellbenders in the local creek. “If they are surviving in the streams in this area, that is a good sign for the water quality. Here is nature’s own testing kit for good water quality.”

Yaw has introduced Senate Bill 658 to designate the Eastern hellbender as Pennsylvania’s official state amphibian. Much of what remains of a depleted hellbender population in Pennsylvania can be found in waters within the senator’s district, which includes Bradford, Lycoming, Sullivan, part of Susquehanna and Union counties.

The campaign on behalf of North America’s largest salamander is the brainchild of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Student Leadership Council. The students have studied the hellbender extensively, wrote the first draft of Senate Bill 658, and are working for its passage.

“It’s about all species that rely on clean water, which essentially encompasses all wildlife in Pennsylvania, including us,” student council President Anna Pauletta said of the campaign.

“Being able to speak up for something that doesn’t necessarily have a voice and making impact on their survivorship through legislation.” She is a senior at Cumberland Valley High School.

“Long-term we are also looking to raise awareness for clean water in general, but within the legislative process as well, because it’s an issue that is commonly overlooked,” Pauletta added.

Without help and more clean water, the Eastern hellbender could disappear.

Hellbenders survive where there is cold, clear, swift-running water. They prefer rocky streambeds. Their spongelike bodies allow them to squeeze into crevices which they use for protection and for nesting.

The slimy salamanders feed at night, primarily on crayfish. Folds of wrinkled skin provide a large surface through which they draw most of their oxygen.

The presence of streamside trees or forested buffers stands out among factors that enable hellbenders to survive.

“Forested buffers are one of the most cost-effective practices available for not only keeping pollutants out of the stream, but also for providing hellbenders cool, clean water and habitat to live,” said Harry Campbell, the bay foundation’s Pennsylvania executive director.

“Science tells us no other practice does so much for so many.”

A lack of forested buffers along commonwealth waterways allows waters to warm, polluted runoff to enter rivers and streams, and silt to build up in streambeds. As a result, habitat has been degraded and hellbender numbers were decimated in streams where they were plentiful as recently as 1990.

In Pennsylvania, roughly 19,000 miles of rivers and streams are fouled by pollution.

The senator and the students believe recognizing the Eastern hellbender as the state amphibian can encourage more Pennsylvanians to protect it and its environment.

“The idea of promoting the name in and of itself is unique,” Sen. Yaw said. “I think there are a lot of people in the state who have never heard of this particular creature.”

The senator is chairman of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee and a member of the Chesapeake Bay Commission.

The senator notes that the students will benefit in the process as well. “These are a bunch of bright kids,” Yaw said. “They’ve got some good ideas. They studied this. We will do it. It showed them that they have a voice and it does make a difference.”

The student effort on behalf of the hellbender began last summer.

Chesapeake Bay Foundation student leaders have installed hellbender nesting boxes in the upper Susquehanna, and sampled streams for the presence of hellbender DNA.

They gathered support for the hellbender designation from conservation groups, and visited the State University of New York Lab in Buffalo, N.Y. to learn about DNA testing. They also went to the Buffalo Zoo to see hellbenders up close.

The students are collaborating with Peter Petokas, noted research associate at the Clean Water Institute at Lycoming College in Williamsport. Petokas has studied hellbenders for more than 10 years and has captured and microchipped over 3,000 of them.

To get more information about the campaign for the Eastern hellbender, go to

Source: PA Outdoor News


Mentored Hunting Legislation Passes in the House

On, June 6, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation expanding Pennsylvania’s mentored hunting programs.  There is currently a loophole in state law which prohibits the Pennsylvania Game Commission from implementing mentored hunting programs for youth between the ages of 12-17.  House Bill 485, sponsored by state Representative Neal Goodman (D-123), is a technical fix which is intended to correct this problem and reinstate the original legislative intent of Pennsylvania’s mentored hunting program.  Further, HB 485 would create a discounted general hunting license for Hunter Trapper Education (HTE) instructors. 

Hunting is one of the safest recreational activities enjoyed by families in the United States.  However, in order for youths between the ages of 12-17 to participate in hunting in Pennsylvania, they must complete the mandatory hunter/trapper safety education course.  Lengthy hunter education requirements often discourage potential hunters from going afield because they are unwilling to dedicate the necessary time to complete the course in order to pursue an activity that they are simply trying out.  HB 485 allows them to experience hunting while under the supervision of a mentor before taking the course.  Eventually, the goal is for these apprentices to complete a hunter education course so they can hunt on their own, which has largely been the case in many other states with similar programs.  Since 2006, nearly 1.5 million apprentice hunting licenses have been sold in participating states and have proven the value and safety of mentoring newcomers in the field.

Source: NRA - ILA


Concealed Carry Reciprocity Effort Gains Steam in Congress

In March, we reported on the details of NRA-backed concealed carry reciprocity legislation pending in Congress. The momentum behind those bills continues to build, with each attracting dozens of co-sponsors.

Sen. John Cornyn’s
Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act now boasts 37 co-sponsors. And 194 of his House colleagues have signed onto Rep. Richard Hudson’s Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017.

Concealed carry reciprocity legislation recognizes that Americans’ Second Amendment right to bear arms doesn’t end at their states’ borders. While most states already recognize this and have provisions allowing for reciprocity for concealed carry permits from other jurisdiction, a minority of antigun states have made a point of arresting out-of-state residents who carry or transport otherwise lawfully owned firearms in their jurisdictions.

This sort of “zero tolerance” enforcement has nothing to do with public safety and everything to do with punishing people who believe in the Second Amendment. There is nothing legitimate about a state using its police powers to suppress the constitutional rights of fellow Americans.

That’s why your NRA has for years supported legislation to ensure that people who are federally eligible to possess firearms and who have state-sanctioned ability to carry concealed don’t lose their eligibility to do so simply because they cross state lines. This legislation would ensure that states would have to treat lawful concealed carriers from other states the same as lawful in-state concealed carriers. States would maintain their prerogatives over their own licensing regimes and the rules of behavior that govern concealed carry within their borders.

Gun control proponents have weakly argued that this legislation makes the most lenient concealed carry standards the de facto national standard. What that argument fails to account for, however, is that criminals who carry unlawfully with evil intent have no standards whatsoever. These bills are not for them. They are for law-abiding and self-regulating Americans who take pains to carry lawfully. And lawful concealed carriers have proven themselves to behave responsibly year after year in every U.S. jurisdiction.

Every expansion of concealed carry rights over the last 30 years has been met with the same tired rhetoric from gun control proponents about how it will result in a return to the Wild West and “blood in the streets.” But
with some 15 million concealed carry permittees in the U.S. and untold thousands more lawfully carrying in the 12 states that no longer require a permit for concealed carry, those predictions simply have not materialized. And the handful of cases gun control proponents desperately point to simply prove the rule.

If your senators or representative have not co-sponsored the bills introduced by Sen. Cornyn and Rep. Hudson, please contact them today and respectfully ask that they do so.

We are closer than ever to making national reciprocity a reality, but the effort needs your help to succeed!

Please contact your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative and urge them to cosponsor and support passage of S.446-- the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017-- in the Senate, and H.R.38 -- the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017-- in the House. You can contact your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative by phone at (202) 224-3121.

Source: NRA / ILA


Nanny Bloomberg vows millions for assault on the 2nd Amendment

Liberal billionaire Michael Bloomberg has vowed to spend $25 million through his anti-2nd Amendment Everytown for Gun Safety group to derail congressional efforts to pass national concealed carry reciprocity legislation.

Currently a mishmash of state and local gun laws often make it difficult for American concealed carry permit holders to know where they may find themselves in hot water for carrying a self-defense firearm.

And in jurisdictions where lawmakers have opted to use concealed carry restrictions as de facto bans on 2nd Amendment, travelers who wrongfully believed their out of state permits valid for carry while traveling— or other who have mistakenly traveled into anti-firearm territory with a firearm in tow— have on more than one occasion found themselves being prosecuted harshlyto send a message.

With Republican control in Washington and in many statehouses throughout the country, conservative lawmakers have been working on legislative changes that would make it harder for these types of situations to occur.

Legislation introduced in both the House, Rep. Richard Hudson’s (R-NC) Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, and Senate, Sen. John Cornyn’s (R-TX) Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, for example would require states to honor outside concealed carry permits.

Critics of the legislation argue that it would essentially eliminate popular gun control efforts in liberal enclaves by making every jurisdiction in the U.S. subject to the gun laws of the most pro-2nd Amendment regions in the country.

Bloomberg’s eponymous news company published an editorial pushing that line of thinking last month, the author of which groaned: “Every state would be required to honor concealed-carry permits issued by any other state, no matter how shabby (Hello, Florida!) or nonexistent (11 states require no permit) its process is.”

But supporters of the 2nd Amendment-strengthening measures see things differently.

As the National Rifle Association has pointed out:

It’s easy to see what the real source of opposition is. The same states that severely restrict carry by their own residents also refuse to recognize non-resident permits. These include California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island.

It’s not that the permitting standards of these states are any more effective in screening out dangerous applicants. It’s that concealed carry permits in those states are treated as the exclusive domain of the wealthy and the connected. The idea that “common” people would have the same rights simply offends the ruling elite’s sense of entitlement.

Bloomberg’s efforts to derail the push are already well underway. According to a report in POLITICO, his organization is in the process of hiring dozens of staffers to assist leaders in harshly anti-gun regions in pushing back against conservative efforts to force compliance with the 2nd Amendment.

“This is a line in the sand on this issue, there’s no question about it. The NRA wants to normalize carrying guns in public. It’s not where the American public is,” Everytown president John Feinblatt told the outlet. “We’re putting people on notice today that we’re watching … and that we expect to hold people accountable.”

Source: by Sam Rolley By Sam Rolley (Personal Liberty)by Sam Rolley



5 reasons to support National Reciprocity

1. Exercising a right shouldn’t be contingent upon what state you’re in.

This seems like it would be obvious. Sadly, it’s not. The Supreme Court affirmed in 2008 that Americans have a constitutionally-protected individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms for self-defense. What’s more, no state can deny a Constitutional right. All national reciprocity means is that state governments must respect non-residents’ right to carry a firearm for self-defense to the same degree as residents of the state. And despite rumors to the contrary, national reciprocity legislation would not dictate to states how and where residents could carry concealed. Non-residents would also have to abide by state regulations governing behavior and places of carry.

2. You don’t want to be an accidental criminal.

Ever of heard of Brian Fletcher? How about Raymond Hughes and Meredith Graves? Each one of them has something in common: They are concealed carriers-turned-accidental criminals because they carried their legally-owned firearms into a state without reciprocity.

Brian Fletcher was a utility repairman who traveled from North Carolina to New Jersey with his legally-owned firearm to do disaster relief work. After volunteering the information about his gun to a police officer in New Jersey, he was arrested and subsequently faced five years in prison.

Raymond Hughes, a corrections officer, was simply traveling through New Jersey when a drunk driver sent him to the emergency room. He had his legally-owned firearm in the car, but because New Jersey doesn’t recognize non-resident carry permits, Hughes was charged with a Class 2 felony.

A similar story happened to Meredith Graves. A registered nurse and concealed carrier, Graves left her handgun in her purse while visiting the 9/11 memorial. When she left New York, she left with a misdemeanor weapons charge added to her record.

These are only a few stores, but they represent many, many instances of law-abiding gun owners getting caught up in the confusing patchwork of reciprocity laws we currently have in the United States.

3. Concealed carry permit holders are among the most law-abiding citizens in the country.

Yes, it’s true. A 2014 study from the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) showed that roughly 11 million Americans have concealed carry permits, up from an estimated 8 million in 2011. Today, the number is closer to 15 million. The CPRC also examined permit holders in Florida and Texas. Between 2008 and 2014, Florida had an average of 875,000 active permit holders. Its permit revocation rate during those years (i.e., the rate of concealed carriers who had their permits revoked due to firearm-related offenses) was a staggering…wait for it…0.00007%.

The rate of concealed carriers convicted of crimes was similarly low in Texas, a state that had 584,850 active permit holders in 2012. Of those, only 0.021% were convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony.

The bottom line? Concealed carry permit holders have overwhelmingly proven to be responsible and law-abiding. And they’re certainly not out there turning American communities into the Wild, Wild West.

4. Reciprocity laws can change frequently with little notice…

Which leads us back to the part about otherwise law-abiding gun owners becoming accidental criminals. When laws change with little public notice, it’s difficult to know when or how you’d run afoul of them.

It does happen: In 2012 for example, the state of Delaware, under the direction of then-attorney general Beau Biden, dropped reciprocity with concealed carriers from Virginia. In 2015, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced his state would stop recognizing permits from 25(!) other states.

And while it is up to each individual gun owner to stay on top of state gun laws, if you’ve been legally carrying your concealed handgun from Virginia to Delaware for 10 years and didn’t know about changes in reciprocity coming down the pipeline, it’s understandable that you’d make that additional trip without checking.

Again: it’s easy for well-intentioned people to get caught up in legal troubles when we’re talking about a patchwork of state laws that can change with little notice.

5. Law-abiding concealed carriers can protect YOU in all 50 states.

As much as gun control advocates like to argue that there’s no such thing as a “good guy with a gun,” mountains of evidence say otherwise.

Just last June, headlines swept the nation of a concealed carrier who stopped a mass shooter outside a nightclub in South Carolina, potentially saving dozens of lives. And who could forget the Minnesota mall stabbing spree last September? He too, was stopped by a law-abiding concealed carrier. Then in January, when two armed men tried to rob a jewelry store in a mall in San Antonio, Texas, they were stopped by concealed carrier. The armed men had already shot and killed an innocent bystander. Who knows what would have happened if the gun owner hadn’t stepped in?

These are just a few stories, but there are many more out there. The truth is responsible, law-abiding concealed carriers are an added layer of protection for ALL of us. Unfortunately, too many states make it difficult or impossible for gun owners to carry concealed — let alone across state lines. In this uncertain world, the last thing states should do is disarm law-abiding gun owners. That doesn’t make anyone safer. But you know what will? Empowering gun owners with the freedom to exercise their right to defend their life and the lives of those around them — no matter what state they’re in.

Source: NRA / ILA


Sisters Successfully Change Iowa Youth Shooting Law as Part of Major Gun Rights Legislation

Gibson sisters convince Iowa to legalize youth pistol shooting

The Gibson sisters watched Thursday as four years of gun rights activism came to fruition with the stroke of Iowa Republican Gov. Terry Branstad's pen.

Meredith Gibson, 13, and Natalie Gibson, 11, had pushed for reform of the state's age restrictions on handling pistols. With Branstad's signing of House File 517, the omnibus bill that includes a number of pro-gun reforms, their quest to legalize youth pistol shooting succeeded. The bill repealed the state's restriction on children under 14 shooting handguns in any capacity, the most restrictive such law in the country.

Under the new law, individuals under 21 years may handle and shoot pistols so long as they are under "direct supervision" by a parent or instructor over the age of 21.

The sisters stood by Branstad's side as he signed HF 517 into law. They told the Washington Free Beacon they were excited to watch their work pay off in real time.

"It was really exciting and kind of nerve-racking because there were a lot of cameras," Meredith said. "Knowing that all of our hard work has actually paid off is exciting and I'm happy that it's all done."

Before HF 517 the girls, who often compete in shooting competitions, were allowed to shoot rifles and shotguns of all calibers in Iowa but had to go to other states to shoot handguns. After the signing ceremony ended, the girls were invited to go shooting with Bearing Arms' Jenn Jacques.

They said they looked forward to finally shooting their pistols in their home state.

"It's going to feel really good because normally I can only shoot my rifle at the range but now that I can finally shoot my pistol," Natalie said. "I'm excited!"

"I'm excited to shoot my pistol," Meredith said. "It's one of my favorite guns."

HF 517 makes major changes to a number of gun laws in Iowa. In addition to the change in age restrictions on handguns, the law adopts a "stand your ground" self-defense standard and adds

privacy protections for people with gun carry permits.

Gun rights groups celebrated the passage of the law.

The Iowa Firearms Coalition, which worked closely with the Gibson sisters to lobby for the bill, said it was a landmark piece of legislation.

"We just got a lot done," Kurt Liske, the group's vice president, told the Free Beacon. "It's awesome."

The National Rifle Association, which also lobbied for HF 517, said the bill helped promote Iowans' right to self defense.

"In state legislatures across America, lawmakers are expanding law-abiding citizens’ constitutional right to self-protection," Chris Cox, head of the NRA's legislative arm, said in a statement. "The NRA and our five million members thank the Iowa legislature and Governor Branstad for working to strengthen Iowans' Second Amendment rights so they have the freedom to protect themselves and their families."

However, Liske argued Meredith and Natalie deserve the real credit for getting the age restriction removed. "They worked their butts off for this," he said. "They deserve a ton of credit for it."

"I know, without a doubt, Meredith and Natalie both are going to grow up and do some amazing things."

Source: BY: Stephen Gutowski


The Washington Post Gives Gun Control Group and U.S. Senator Three Pinocchios on Suppressors

Last week, we wrote about Americans for Responsible Solutions’ irresponsible misinformation about The Hearing Protection Act on Twitter.  Apparently, we weren’t the only ones who took notice of ARS’s complete disregard for the facts on firearm suppressors.

On Monday, The Washington Post Fact Checker took a look at ARS’s tweet as well as a tweet by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) about suppressors.  While the Post raised many of the same problems we did, its fact check further confirmed that ARS has no problem with lying to achieve its mission for gun (or in this case suppressor) control. 

Perhaps the most interesting part of the fact check came from ARS’s defense of its claim “You know what protections your hearing better than a silencer?  Ear plugs.”  According to the Post, to support this claim ARS spokeswoman Katie Peters supplied the Post with an article that showed an average of 30 decibels of reduction for commonly available suppressors. 

Even if ARS was unaware that earplugs and earmuffs should have their Noise Reduction Ratings substantially reduced using a derating calculation, citing a 30 decibel reduction for suppressors would still put them amongst the best available hearing protectors.  But, as we pointed out last week, in real world use earplugs only get about 50% of their stated NRR, so the 30 decibel figure cited by ARS is better than any available earplug once the derating formula is applied. 

The Post also addressed Sen. Gillibrand’s claim “When someone gets shot by a gun with a silencer, it’s quiet. Witnesses might not hear. Police will be less likely to track down the shooter.” To support this claim, opponents of the HPA relied on a favorite argument of anti-suppressor activists: that suppressors might limit the utility of ShotSpotter and other similar gun fire detection equipment.

Here the Post went straight to the source and found that suppressors do not pose the great hurdle for ShotSpotter that some have been lead to believe.  The fact check cited Ralph Clark, the chief executive of ShotSpotter, as stating “We have successfully if not inadvertently detected confirmed suppressed gunfire within our existing deployments. Although we have not formally tested the theoretical impact to our system, we intend to do some targeted testing in the near future. We believe we will have various options ranging from increasing our sensor array density to developing software/firmware to address the detection of suppressed gunfire if it were to become a widespread issue.”

In the end, the Post gave ARS and Gillibrand three pinocchios, which the Post describes as “Significant factual error and/or obvious contradictions. This gets into the realm of ‘mostly false.’” 

Don’t let lying anti-gun groups and politicians endanger the Hearing Protection Act. Please make sure your U.S. senators and congressional representative hear from you on this important legislation to protect Second Amendment rights and the health of the American gun owner. It is long past time to discard America’s antiquated and unsupported approach to suppressor regulation.

You can contact your member of Congress via our Write Your Reps tool by clicking HERE or use the Congressional switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

Source: NRA / ILA


A new report from Scotland Yard reveals that a “significant spike in knife and gun offenses” has occurred in the United Kingdom, throwing cold water on the notion that restrictive British gun and knife laws have made that nation safer, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

According to Scotland Yard, there has been a 42 percent increase in so-called “gun violence” and a 24 percent rise in “knife offenses” during the 2016-2017 financial year.

“All the rhetoric we’ve heard over the years about how the British solved their crime problem by having law-abiding citizens turn in their guns, and adopting strict knife and gun control has suddenly turned out to be wishful thinking, if not simply wrong,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “Like gun control efforts anywhere, the Brits have disarmed the wrong people.

“It is ironic that this news appears now, as America celebrates the 242nd anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, when American colonists resisted Britain’s attempt to confiscate arms from the militia,” he added. “British gun control then ignited a revolution. Now it is just resulting in a higher violent crime rate.”

The famous battles occurred on April 19, 1775 after someone fired “the shot heard ‘round the world.”

Scotland Yard’s report shows something else. There were 12,074 knife-related crimes in the 2016-2017 financial year, which demonstrates that criminals will resort to whatever weapon they can get their hands on against a unilaterally-disarmed public. This has happened at the same time that law enforcement budget cuts are in the news.

“British ruffians are no different than criminals in the United States,” Gottlieb observed. “They will take advantage of any weakness the see, whether in law enforcement or the public’s inability to defend against an attack. This is why we fight so hard to protect our nation’s constitutional right to keep and bear arms, and why our friends across the pond should seriously reconsider how their policies have made their citizens more vulnerable to people who routinely ignore the law.”

Source: The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms The Citizens Committee can be reached by phone at (425) 454-4911, on the Internet at or by email to


Top 10 ways to secure your mobile phone

Seems like everywhere you turn, there’s news of another mobile security breach. Just last month, vulnerabilities in iOS 9.3.5 were being exploited by the notorious NSO Group, maker of surveillance software, to read text messages and emails, record sounds, collect passwords, and even track the calls and whereabouts of users. Apple released a security patch on August 25 in response.

Meanwhile, on the Android side, a Linux bug first introduced in Android 4.4 (and present in all future versions) left 1.4 billion users vulnerable to hijacking attacks. The vulnerability allows attackers to terminate connections and, if the connections aren’t encrypted, inject malicious code or content into users’ communications. Representatives from Google say they are aware of the vulnerability and are “taking the appropriate actions.”

These hacks aren’t happening in a vacuum. Mobile malware is a frontier ripe for cybercriminal activity. According to a 2015 Pew Research Center Report, nearly two-thirds of Americans own a smartphone, and roughly one in five of those users conduct most of their online browsing using their phone instead of a computer. The reality is that as more and more people use their phones to go online, more cybercriminals will hear the call.

Mobile malware on the rise

“Mobile malware has been on the rise drastically in last couple of years,” says Nathan Collier, Senior Malware Intelligence Analyst at Malwarebytes. “Everything from backdoor malware that steals personal information to ransomware that locks your phone until payment is made exists in the mobile space. With millions of malware samples in the wild, there is no reason not to be concerned.”

In addition to an increased volume of people turning to their phones as the primary means for going online, there’s also an increase in using mobile devices for storing and transmitting sensitive data. The 2015 Pew Research Center Report also shows a full 57 percent of smartphone users doing their online banking on their phones.

But online banking is just the tip of the iceberg. GPS programs can find your location. Mobile apps often require that you allow them to access data stored in your phone or on the cloud. You can receive digital boarding passes via text message or verification codes for logging into sites, social media apps publish photos and personal data, fitness and health apps track steps, heartrate, and food intake—a cybercriminal can learn all there is to know about their targets by breaching their cell phone.

Your phone may contain and transmit a larger volume of and more sensitive info than your computers—but it’s not always as protected.

Security issues with phones

A number of factors contribute to weak mobile phone security, but one of the top concerns is that phones are much easier to be misplaced, lost, and stolen. Mobile phones go with you everywhere, which means there’s more potential for leaving them behind. Once a criminal has physical control over your phone, it’s often not too difficult to gain control of its data.

A second huge concern for mobile phone security is the validity of third-party apps. They aren’t vetted by the major app stores iTunes and Google Play, therefore they needn’t pass a minimum standard for safety. Apple iPhone has strict laws about apps: They can only be downloaded from iTunes, therefore they’re more secure. The downside is that users are restricted from going outside the iTunes ecosystem, which is why people sometimes jailbreak their phones. This is a dangerous measure, as it negates all security, not only for apps, but also for operating systems.

Google’s Android, however, allows for third-party apps to be downloaded. “Android is highly customizable and open to innovation by its users,” says Collier. “Also, although Google highly recommends you only install from the Google Play store, they allow you to take the risk into your own hands if you really want to install elsewhere.”

Another security risk with mobile phones is that users don’t update their OSes as often as computers. Updating phone software requires ample memory and battery power, and users are often running low on both. Every time a software update is delayed on a mobile phone, a cybercriminal has an opportunity to exploit security vulnerabilities in the operating system.

Of course, mobile phones are also vulnerable to the same pitfalls that befall desktops and laptops—mainly, users who don’t practice safe surfing. Social engineering in the form of social media scams and phishing can especially ensnare mobile users who regularly check their email, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites. Phishing in the form of text messaging, or smishing, has also become a popular attack vector, particularly for criminals looking to cash in on the popularity of mobile banking.

Finally, all of these risks are compounded by the fact that technical security measures are not commonplace in phones. While computers are often equipped with firewalls, antivirus, and/or anti-malware software, mobile devices typically have only their operating systems and the security of their apps to protect them.

Ways to stay secure

So what does this mean for mobile phone users? It means that it’s even more important to stay vigilant about cybersecurity when using a mobile device. Here are some ways you can protect yourself, your data, and your phone.

  • Lock your phone with a password or fingerprint detection. At the very least, if you leave your phone on the counter at Starbucks or if it’s stolen out of your pocket, cybercriminals will have to get through that first gate. Set the time on your password lock to be short as well—30 seconds or less should cut it.
  • If it’s not already the default on your phone, consider encrypting your data. Doing so is especially useful for protecting sensitive data, whether that’s business emails or investing and banking apps.
  • Set up remote wipe. If your phone is lost or stolen, you’ll be able to wipe all of its data remotely (and therefore keep it out of the hands of criminals). You can often also use remote wipe to find your phone’s location.
  • Back up phone data. Consider connecting your device to its associated cloud service in order to automatically back up data (and encrypt it). However, if you don’t trust the cloud, be sure you connect to a PC or Mac to sync data regularly in order to preserve photos, videos, apps, and other files.
  • Avoid third-party apps. If you’re on an iPhone, you don’t have much of a choice. However, for Android users, staying on Google Play and not allowing apps from unknown sources keeps you relatively safe. If you do decide to use third-party apps, research to be sure you’re not getting a malicious one. Read reviews, and if the app asks for access to too much personal data up front, don’t download it.
  • Avoid jailbreaking your iPhone or rooting your Android. While the processes are different, the end result is bypassing what phone manufacturers intended (including security protocols) and ultimately weakening the security of your device.
  • Update operating systems often. When that pop-up reminder comes up, don’t ignore it. Charge your phone, clear out some space, and install the update right away.
  • Be wary of social engineering scams. Cybercriminals love to spoof banking apps, send phony texts meant to collect personal data, and email malicious links and attachments. Just as you do on your computer, view any communications from unknown sources with a careful eye. If it seems fishy, it very likely is.
  • Use public wifi carefully. Yes, you don’t want to use up all your data. However, public wifi is inherently insecure, so try not to make transactions or transmit sensitive data while using it. Consider using a VPN service to encrypt data transmitted online.
  • Download anti-malware for your mobile device. If you do happen to download a malicious app or open a malicious attachment, mobile anti-malware protection can prevent the infection.

Chances are, you use your phone to do a lot of stuff online. You may even be reading this article on it right now. For peace of mind, and to get a leg up against a rising tide of mobile malware activity, don’t just phone it in—be proactive about your mobile security.

Source: Posted by Wendy Zamora



Pro-gun Bills Introduced to Reform FOPA, Protect Interstate Transport of Firearms for Lawful Use

Pro-gun members of Congress have introduced legislation to protect travelers who are transporting firearms interstate for lawful purposes.

The first such bill was
H.R. 358, filed by Rep. H. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) and 38 cosponsors in February. Joining him this week was Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who introduced S.618 on Tuesday.

pending national reciprocity bills, this legislation deals specifically with transporting unloaded firearms, rather than for carry on one’s person en route.

Both bills would reform important provisions of the Firearm Owners Protection Act (FOPA) intended to protect the right of law-abiding gun owners to transport firearms throughout our nation. Yet in the years since its enactment, this law has too often been ignored by anti-gun local officials and effectively gutted by the courts. H.R. 358 and S. 618 would rewrite the law to implement the outcome Congress intended when it was passed more than 25 years ago.

FOPA’s safe transport provisions (
codified at 18 U.S.C. ᄃ 926A) guarantee the right of a law-abiding person to transport an unloaded firearm between two locations where he or she may legally possess it, regardless of state or local laws along the route of travel that would otherwise prohibit such conduct. Under the current law, the gun must be cased or otherwise not readily accessible.

Most states have never had a problem with this law.  However, both before and after enactment of FOPA, gun owners have had serious problems lawfully traveling in two states in particular: New York (especially New York City) and New Jersey. Rather than recognize Congressional intent to protect the rights of Americans traveling with legally owned firearms, these jurisdictions have used overly restrictive state licensing laws to harass and persecute nonresident gun owners.

In 2004, the Port Authority Police Department (PAPD) arrested John Torraco at LaGuardia Airport for illegal possession of a firearm.  Torraco, an attorney and law professor from Florida, had properly stored his legally owned, unloaded handgun in his checked luggage.  However, when he declared the firearm to the counter agent (as required by federal law) he was arrested and charged for possessing the handgun without a New York handgun license.

In 2005, William Winstanley, a New York State resident, was detained at John F. Kennedy International Airport when he attempted to check a handgun in his luggage, again in compliance with the requirements of § 926A.  Winstanley was not arrested, but his travel was delayed for several days while he proved that he was in compliance with federal law.

In 2005, Greg Revell, a Utah resident, was flying through Newark Liberty International Airport to his final destination in Pennsylvania. However, his flight into New Jersey was late, which caused him to miss his connecting flight. Revell was forced to collect his baggage and spend the night in a Newark hotel. When he attempted to recheck his baggage the following morning, he declared his unloaded handgun to the counter agent. PAPD officers arrested Revell for illegal possession of a handgun and ammunition under New Jersey law.  Revell spent three days in jail before he was able to make bail.

Each of these gun owners filed a civil rights suit in federal court to vindicate their rights under FOPA.  In each case, however, the courts interpreted the law to deprive travelers who comply with its provisions of any effective remedy after they’ve been arrested or detained by police for violation of state or local law.

Since that time, many other cases have resulted in guilty pleas to reduced charges, civil penalties, seized firearms, and delayed travel in situations where FOPA should have provided protection.

While cases of inappropriate arrest or detention are most common at the New York City airports, they are not limited to those locations. In Albany, NY, detention of gun owners and confiscation of firearms have been reported by persons traveling in full compliance with § 926A.  The NRA has been forced to repeatedly warn gun owners that they should avoid using New York or New Jersey airports when traveling with firearms.

To correct this situation, the pending bills would:

Expand the protections afforded travelers to include “staying in temporary lodging overnight, stopping for food, fuel, vehicle maintenance, an emergency, medical treatment, and any other activity incidental” to the trip.

Put the burden of proof clearly on the state to show that a traveler did not meet the requirements of § 926A, rather than allow travelers to be arrested on local charges and forced to raise § 926A before a judge as an “affirmative defense.”

Make clear that transportation of firearms, their magazines, and ammunition is federally protected.

Make clear that violation of the right to transport firearms is judicially enforceable as a federal civil right, with attorney’s fees available to victorious plaintiffs in civil suits, as well as to defendants who prevail in criminal cases after raising a FOPA defense.

The NRA thanks Rep. Griffith and Sen. Hatch for their leadership in this vitally important effort and urges their respective chambers to take up the bills as soon as possible.

A constitutional “right” to arms that can be vetoed at every state, county, or municipal border is no right at all.

Source: NRA / ILA



Pennsylvania: Critical Firearms Preemption Legislation Passes Committee

 Senate Bill 1330, legislation that would strengthen Pennsylvania’s firearms preemption law to further ensure firearm and ammunition laws are consistent throughout the state,  passed the Senate Local Government Committee with an 8-3 vote.  SB 1330 will now go to the Senate floor for consideration by the full chamber.  

On the heels of last week’s Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that struck down ACT 192 – Firearm Preemption Legislation - for violation of the “single subject” rule for legislative process, Senator Rich Alloway (R-33) has re-introduced legislation, SB 1330, to replace the intent of the original measure. 

Title 18 Pa.C.S., Section 6120 of Pennsylvania law specifically states that "No county, municipality or township may in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition or ammunition components when carried or transported for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth."

State firearms preemption was enacted by the state legislature to avoid the possibility of 2,639 separate firearm laws across the Commonwealth; however, over recent years, numerous local governments have enacted gun control ordinances in violation of the current state firearms preemption law.

A myriad of local firearm laws makes compliance very difficult and nearly impossible for responsible gun owners.  This creates a situation where gun owners and sportsmen have difficulty even knowing about certain laws, much less understanding them.  SB 1330 will correct the problem by preventing localities from imposing ordinances more restrictive than laws passed by the Pennsylvania Legislature.

We would like to thank Senator Alloway for reintroducing this important legislation and urge you to contact your state Senator TODAY and urge them to support this important measure.

Source: NRA / ILA



Wednesday’s horrific terror attack in London that left three people dead, including an unarmed police constable, underscores the dangerously backward logic that leaves British police officers largely unarmed while terrorists and criminals will use whatever weapon they can, the Second Amendment Foundation said today.
“The death of veteran Constable Keith Palmer, along with a female British subject and an American citizen is yet another graphic demonstration of what we’ve learned in America,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Armed evil beats unarmed innocence every time. In this case, Constable Palmer was betrayed by his employer, by his government, and essentially set up to die.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to Constable Palmer’s family,” Gottlieb continued, “as well as the families of the other victims. It takes a good deal of courage in today’s world to become a police officer, and it takes a special kind of backbone to do that job unarmed.”
The American gun rights leader noted that the increasing use of violence by terrorists across the European landscape has given new urgency to the mission of the International Association for the Protection of Civilian Arms Rights (IAPCAR) of which SAF is a founding member. Gottlieb was instrumental in creating that worldwide organization, and its efforts are taking on more importance with the growing terrorist threat.
“Terrorists and violent criminals prefer unarmed victims,” he stated. “British gun control laws have disarmed the general public along with most police officers, making the entire country a target rich environment.
“While it is being reported that Constable Palmer was supported by armed colleagues who shot the attacker, he should not have had to depend upon brother officers for his own safety,” Gottlieb stressed. “We realize there is a tradition of unarmed officers across Great Britain, but this brutal attack should serve as a wake-up warning that officer safety outweighs tradition. You cannot handcuff police with rules and regulations when terrorists, whether they are international criminals or home-grown lone wolf lunatics, simply disregard the mores and morals of a civilized society. In the end, all that you wind up with is a body count.”

Source:  The Second Amendment Foundation (




A new Gallup poll that shows dramatically declining support for a ban on so-called “assault weapons” is proof that more Americans are waking up to the fact that gun bans and restrictive control in general are not the solutions to violent crime, the Second Amendment Foundation said today.

“While extremist anti-gunners in Washington, D.C. push their agenda of public disarmament, this new poll shows that support for the right to keep and bear arms stretches across party lines all over the country,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Some people may think gun control is an issue that will carry them into the White House, but out here where common sense prevails, the idea of banning guns only puts people in the dog house.”

According to Gallup, only 36 percent of the people support a ban on “assault weapons,” where 44 percent backed the idea in 2012 and 57 percent liked the idea back in 1996. Gottlieb said the past 20 years have allowed Second Amendment organizations to educate the public, and many political leaders, about the false promise of restrictive gun control and outright bans.

“Taking perfectly legal firearms away from law-abiding citizens does nothing to discourage criminals from committing crimes with guns they obtain illegally,” Gottlieb explained. “Demonizing honest citizens who have harmed nobody by blaming their guns for crimes they didn’t commit does not pass the smell test, and the new Gallup results show that an increasing number of Americans have wised up to that.”

Gottlieb was disappointed, though not surprised, that more Democrats than Republicans still favor a ban. But he is encouraged because the poll results suggest that efforts by gun rights organizations to educate the public about Second Amendment issues and the futility of gun bans are working.

“The more people understand that banning guns for law-abiding citizens will not prevent criminals from breaking the law, the less time we will waste on fighting over gun rights and the more time we can spend on finding sensible solutions to lowering the violent crime rates,” Gottlieb concluded.

Source: The Second Amendment Foundation


U.S. House Passes NRA-Backed Bill to Protect Second Amendment Rights of America’s Veterans

On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1181, the Veterans 2nd Amendment Protection Act, sponsored by Phil Roe, M.D. (R-TN), Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs. The bill now moves to the U.S. Senate.

H.R. 1181 in many respects mirrors a recently enacted resolution to repeal an Obama-era Social Security Administration (SSA) rule that sought to deprive certain SSA beneficiaries of their Second Amendment rights.

A federal statute prohibits firearm acquisition or possession by anyone who has been “adjudicated as a mental defective.” The statute, however, does not define the meaning of this term.

Like the SSA, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) interprets the phrase very broadly. It considers any VA beneficiary who is declared “incompetent” to manage his or her benefits and assigned a fiduciary for assistance to be a prohibited “mental defective.”

This is even broader and more arbitrary than the invalidated SSA rule. That rule at least excluded beneficiaries who were minors or of retirement age and applied only where the underlying condition that qualified the person for Disability benefits or Supplemental Security Income was itself a mental condition.

The VA’s practice, however, has no such limitations. It applies to all beneficiaries receiving benefits for any reason who are assigned a fiduciary. The VA’s position is that an admission or finding that a fiduciary is needed is tantamount to an “adjudication” that a person “lacks the mental capacity” to “manage his own affairs.”  

But in most cases, these decisions are summary bureaucratic actions. They very rarely involve a hearing, much less lawyers or judges. So calling them an “adjudication” is inaccurate.

It’s also false to claim that needing help with finances is the sort of “mental defectiveness” Congress intended would prevent a person from being eligible to exercise his or her Second Amendment rights.

Mental health experts warn that there is no connection between financial acumen and a person’s ability safely and responsibly to handle a firearm. That point was made again and again in the context of the debate on the SSA bill.

Thus, the same arguments against the SSA rule apply just as strongly, if not more so, against the VA’s regime.

In other words, the VA’s regime is unconstitutional; inconsistent with the underlying statute; unsupported by science or empirical evidence establishing any link between financial acumen and the ability to safely and responsibly handle firearms; and harmfully stigmatizing. It also serves as a deterrent for vulnerable people who need help and benefits from seeking them.

In addition to all that, it presents the bitter irony of being targeted directly at the very people who bore the cost for the freedoms that all Americans enjoy.

The Veterans 2nd Amendment Protection Act would correct these deficiencies by ensuring that no beneficiary could be reported to NICS as a prohibited “mental defective” unless a judicial authority (such as a judge or magistrate) first determined the person to be a danger to self or others.

That leaves options in the case of a person experiencing an acute episode of dangerous mental illness, while also ensuring that veterans are not arbitrarily denied their rights without due process of law.

Meanwhile, the media is whipping up the usual frenzy about Congress “giving guns” to the “mentally ill.”

Even the self-styed legal experts from The View got in on the act, going so far as to encourage their viewers to contact their congressional representatives to object. Their comments on the bill and its effects, unsurprisingly, were rife with misunderstanding and misinformation.

Due process, as well as Second Amendment rights, are fundamental liberties that all Americans enjoy. They are exactly the sorts of rights for which America’s veterans have sacrificed so much. The fact that the VA would infringe them in this manner is a national disgrace and one that is long past due for correction.

The NRA thanks Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), as well as Chairman Roe, for their leadership in this critical effort.

The U.S. Senate should swiftly follow their lead and send the Veterans 2nd Amendment Protection Act to President Trump’s desk.

Source: NRA / ILA


A Declaration of Independence for today

Two-hundred forty years ago a group of men pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor and embarked on a dangerous journey with an uncertain outcome in an effort to wrest themselves and their country from a despotic monarch and forge a new nation.

When taken in context, the tyranny under which the Founders languished pales in comparison to that we face today, as our Becky Akers so ably wrote last week.

So with apologies to Mr. Jefferson, the drafters and signatories of the original Declaration of Independence, I have taken their framework and drafted a new document stating our new grievances – many of which are eerily similar to those of yesteryear.

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these united States; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of recent presidents, congresses and federal courts is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

They have created a host of Laws, regulations, ordinances and statutes that are most unwholesome and contrary to the public good. Presidents have created laws with the stroke of a pen, congresses have ceded their authority under the Constitution to make law and declare war to both the president and bureaucrats, and the courts have created law from whole cloth and stricken down laws passed by the people, all contrary to the established Constitution.

They have forbidden Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation, till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

They have refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

They have labeled freedom-loving people as dissidents and enemies of the state and sought to have them disarmed.

They have endeavored to prevent the population of these States, for that purpose establishing Laws for Admittance of Foreigners to act on their own behalf; refusing also to pass others to discourage their migrations hither, and raising the limits of foreigners imported.

They have obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing to restrain the bureaucrats and by granting the Judiciary powers it does not possess.

They have erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out our substance and spy on us, rifle through our bank accounts, scan our electronic correspondence, raid our homes and places of business, prevent the self-determination of land use, inspect our gardens and livestock pens, prevent us from determining what is good and proper for consumption and to steal our property.

They have kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies in the form of militarized and federalized police officers who steal our possessions in the name of the “War on Drugs” and the “War on Terror,” who torture us and shoot us in order ensure their own safety; and have militarized a host government alphabet soup agencies with huge stockpiles of weapons and ammunition.

They have affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the civil power.

They have combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

  • For establishing crony Trade pacts with all parts of the world:
  • For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
  • For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending laws passed by our own Legislatures and voted on by the people, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

They have abdicated Government here, by declaring illegal immigrants in his Protection and waging War against us through an intentional invasion of foreigners.

They are at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation, making war on other nations that have not attacked us and do not threaten us.

They and their minions have excited domestic insurrections amongst us.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have we been wanting in attentions to representatives in Congress. We have warned them from time to time about their attempts to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation from the federal leviathan, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

I, therefore, as a Representative of the people of the united States of America and the readers of Personal Liberty,  appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these states, solemnly publish and declare, That we are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the unlawful U.S. government, and that all political connection between them and the people, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Who will join me?

Source: Bob Livingston (Personal Liberty)



BELLEVUE, WA – Renewed interest by Seattle news outlets in the revenues generated by the City of Seattle’s so-called “gun violence tax” demonstrates that the media is wondering why the city continues to withhold that information, especially considering an ongoing lawsuit by the Second Amendment Foundation and its publication,

“Back in 2015, when the city adopted this gun tax, there were predictions that it would generate between $300,000 and $500,000 in revenue,” SAF founder Alan Gottlieb recalled. “Here we are, more than a year after the tax took effect, and the city still hasn’t released any information. The public has a right to know whether this was an accurate forecast, or just a pie-in-the-sky sales pitch to push this tax into law.

“Other news agencies have sought this information,” he added, “and we invite and challenge the media to join with us in the fight to protect the First Amendment and the people’s right to know because this is clearly a First Amendment issue. The city has argued that releasing the tax revenue information would jeopardize the privacy of the few businesses that have paid the tax, but that argument seems pretty thin. It’s becoming our strong suspicion that the city doesn’t want to release the revenue figure because it doesn’t come close to what they predicted.” senior editor Dave Workman, who is a plaintiff in the case, repeated what has been the publication’s position since the outset: “We have never been interested in disclosing who paid what amount. All we want is an aggregate figure, and the longer the city holds out, the more people will wonder if they’re trying to conceal something.”

A separate lawsuit challenging the tax was filed in late 2015 by SAF, the National Rifle Association and National Shooting Sports Foundation, plus two retail gun dealers. One of those retailers has moved his business outside the city, and the lawsuit asserts this is not a sales tax but a gun control measure that violates Washington State’s preemption statute.

“The City of Seattle is stonewalling us,” Gottlieb stated. “It’s time for them to come clean.”

Source: The Second Amendment Foundation ( 



Qualifying for the National Archery in the Schools Program state championships is happening now.


  • A huge opportunity is “nocking” for Pennsylvania’s student archers.
  • The 2017 National Archery in the Schools Program State Tournament is set to be held March 10 in State College. Qualifying for the state event is currently open across the state. And the Pennsylvania Game Commission is encouraging all schools participating in the program, commonly referred to as NASP, to take part.
  • Teams hoping to make the state tournament must first shoot at one of the many state qualifiers being held across the state. Qualifying opened on Oct. 1 and closes on Feb. 5.  The top 12 teams in each age division, as well as the top 30 individuals in each age class, will earn a ticket to the state championships. 
  • For information on how to host a state qualifier at your school use this link. 
  • The NASP state tournament has been growing each year since its inception in 2011, and the March 10 tournament to be held at the Penn State Multi-Sport Facility figures to include close to 1,000 participants. Students from more than 50 schools across Pennsylvania are expected to participate. The increase is representative of growth in the program statewide.
  • NASP, which started in Kentucky in 2002 and has since gained participants around the globe, came to Pennsylvania in 2005. The Game Commission began coordinating the program in 2010 and, to present, the program has expanded to 237 schools.
  • The tournament should be a sight to see. Ninety-five lanes, each with two archers, will be operating at once. About 9,000 arrows will fly each hour. And somewhere near 46,000 arrows will be shot on the day.
  • This year, there will be over $7,000 in scholarships handed out to the top-performing archers in the state to help pay for college or trade school. 
  • To find a state qualifier tournament in your area, use the NASP Tournament website,
  • Teams are reminded they must be NASP schools and participate in a state qualifier for a chance to qualify for the state championships. 
  • NASP helps school districts in Pennsylvania meet physical-education curriculum requirements standards set by the state Department of Education, and at the same time introduces students to the world of competitive archery.
  • Tournaments are held at the state, national and international levels, and Pennsylvania sent over 160 students to the 2016 national competition, which was held in Louisville, Kentucky;
  • To get NASP started in a Pennsylvania school, contact Todd Holmes, at the Game Commission headquarters, at 717-787-4250 (ext. 3330). Also, “PA NASP” can be found on Facebook at

Source: Pennsylvania Game Commission




The Second Amendment Foundation responded to a biased story about firearms theft that appears in The Trace, an on-line anti-gun-rights publication.

The story concerns gun thefts from vehicles. SAF noted that those guns would not be left in cars were it not for the ridiculous gun control laws supported by wealthy anti-gun elitists who also support the publication.

“Michael Bloomberg and other gun prohibition elitists who bankroll The Trace should be demanding tougher sentences for people who break into cars just to steal guns, rather than whining about law-abiding citizens who are forced to leave guns locked in vehicles because of gun-free zones and other restrictions,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb.

The article contends that gun owners “make it easy for thieves.” In reality, Gottlieb countered, it is laws that prevent legally-armed citizens from carrying their firearms into so-called ‘gun-free zones’ that include restaurants, shopping malls, theaters and other public places. And, he added, the blame also lies with lax enforcement of existing laws that are supposed to punish car prowlers.

“Gun prohibitionists encourage businesses to post their property off limits to legally-carried firearms,” Gottlieb noted. “The best way to keep firearms out of the wrong hands is to make it easier, not harder, for those guns to remain in the right hands. No honest citizen should be forced to leave a legal firearm locked in a vehicle while dining out with friends, or taking their families to a movie, or to a shopping mall, where they might be attacked and seriously injured, without the means to fight back, as last weekend’s incident in Minnesota demonstrated.

“This makes it easier for thieves to steal guns,” he added. “It’s almost as though anti-gunners want car prowlers to take those firearms, and for legal gun owners to be sitting ducks for the next madman with a knife.

“Bloomberg and The Trace don’t seem to understand who the good guys and bad guys are,” Gottlieb concluded.


The Second Amendment Foundation (


Pa. Bill for Mentored Hunters Advances to Full Senate

Legislation that would allow Pennsylvania middle- and high-school-aged kids to try hunting under the direct control of an experienced mentor has cleared the final committee, allowing the bill to be voted on by the full Senate. House Bill 1452 would extend mentored hunting privileges to kids ages 12 to 17.  Mentored hunting is already permitted for people under 12 years old, and for adults.

 “Pennsylvania is the only mentored hunting state that currently prohibits high school and middle school kids from participating in mentored hunting,” said Evan Heusinkveld, president and CEO of the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “Mentored hunting has been shown to be the safest and most effective means of attracting newcomers to hunting. We strongly encourage Pennsylvania senators to allow teenagers to join younger kids and adults in this opportunity.” 

House Bill 1452 was approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee, the final hurdle preventing it from receiving a vote before the entire Senate. The bill was unanimously approved by the Senate Game and Fish Committee on March 22. If approved, it must also be voted on by the full House because of the mentored hunting changes inserted into the bill. HB 1452 also provides discount hunting licenses to trapping instructors. 

The Sportsmen’s Alliance, and the other Families Afield partners (National Shooting Sports Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, National Rifle Association and Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation), have successfully championed mentored or apprentice hunting in 39 states since the Families Afield program was launched in 2005. The result has been more than 1.6 million licenses sold, many to suburban and urban people as well as women and girls. 

Pennsylvania was the first state to adopt a Families Afield-style mentored hunting bill for kids in 2006, and has led the nation in mentored hunting license sales ever since. In 2013, the Pennsylvania legislature approved legislation allowing adults to join the program. However, the Pennsylvania Game Commission reported that it needed special authorization to include kids ages 12 to 17. House Bill 1452 would correct that age loophole in the law and open the opportunity to them. 

Source: The Sportsmen’s Alliance


SAF Says Punish Democrats For House Rules Violations 

Reacting to an ethics complaint filed by an independent watchdog group against several House Democrats for violating House rules during their gun control sit-in, the Second Amendment Foundation today said the offenders should be punished for attacking the Second Amendment.

“I hope that these Democrat assault politicians get punished for their ethics violations,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “What they should really get punished for is violating their oath of office to protect our Constitution and the Second Amendment rights it protects.”

The complaint was filed by the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust. It alleges that “House Democrats sent fundraising emails based on action taken in the Members official capacity and using official House images.”

“Bad enough that some House members appear to have exploited the sit-in for their own political purpose,” Gottlieb stated, “but their antics were primarily aimed at eroding the Second Amendment. Whether they like it or not, the right to keep and bear arms is part of the Bill of Rights, and if they can’t abide by that, they should hand in their resignations immediately.”

The partisan sit-in was staged entirely for the purpose of pushing for new gun control measures following the Orlando terror incident.

“In other countries,” Gottlieb observed, “authorities blame such attacks on Islamic or political extremism. But in the United States, Democrats always seem to blame such attacks on the Second Amendment, and they try to penalize 90 million law-abiding gun owners for something they didn’t do.

“If some drunk crashed a car into a school bus,” he noted, “you wouldn’t take car keys away from every motorist or try to ban cars. But these Democrats would rather go after guns because it diverts public attention away from the fact that they have been either unwilling or unable to prevent terror attacks on American soil.”

Source: The Second Amendment Foundation


 Connecticut Judge Grants Immunity to Bushmaster in Case Seeking to Gut the PLCAA

On January 26, 2015, survivors of victims killed by a deranged man at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut sued the maker and distributor of the firearm he used in his crimes.

This afternoon, a judge issued a ruling in the case, Soto v. Bushmaster, that held the defendants were entitled to immunity from the suit.

The defendants in the case originally asked the court to dismiss the complaint under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), which was enacted in 2005 to prohibit frivolous suits against firearm makers for criminal acts committed with their products by unaffiliated third parties. 

In April, the court in the Soto case issued a highly technical ruling that found the defendants had filed the wrong type of motion to invoke the protections of the PLCAA. The court at that time expressed no opinion on the merits of either the complaint or the defenses.

The defendants renewed their claim of immunity under the PLCAA, this time by filing “motions to strike” the plaintiffs’ claims.

In a lengthy decision on the merits, Connecticut Judge Barbara Bellis today granted those motions in their entirety.

Judge Bellis stated in her order: 

Congress, through the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act … has broadly prohibited lawsuits “against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of firearms … for the harm solely caused by the criminal or unlawful use of firearm products … by others when the produced functioned as designed and intended.” … The present case seeks damages for harms … that were caused solely by the criminal misuse of a weapon by [the perpetrator of the Newtown slayings]. Accordingly, this action falls squarely within the broad immunity provided by the PLCAA.  

The plaintiffs in the case tried to avoid the obvious problems the PLCAA presented for their claims by citing one of the law’s exceptions for “negligent entrustment.” This requires a plaintiff to show that the seller of the product knew, or reasonably should have known, that selling the product to a particular recipient created an unreasonable risk of harm.

In the Newtown case, none of the defendants sold or supplied a firearm directly to the ultimate perpetrator. Instead, the firearm was sold to his mother, who passed the legally required background check. The perpetrator, however, subsequently killed her and stole the firearm he then used in his crimes. 

Nevertheless, the plaintiffs claimed the defendants were negligent for entrusting any member of the general public with the Bushmaster XM-15E2S (an AR-15 variant) used in the crime. Despite the fact the firearm was perfectly legal to sell and own under federal and Connecticut law at the time and that AR-15s are America’s most popular and fastest-selling rifles, the plaintiffs insisted that “civilians are unfit to operate AR-15s.”

Had this claim succeeded, it would have not only been the first time a court essentially banned an otherwise legal class of firearms, it would have essentially gutted the protections of the PLCAA by making courts, rather than legislatures, the ultimate arbiters of what firearms are legal to sell.

Fortunately, Judge Bellis understood this was exactly the sort of claim for which the PLCAA was enacted. It would be impossible for businesses to manufacture and sell firearms to the public if courts could decide, after that fact, that even legal gun were too dangerous for any member of the public to own. 

Judge Bellis also rejected other claims under a PLCAA exception that allows for a lawsuit when a manufacturer or seller knowingly violated a state or federal statute applicable to the sale or marketing of the product, and that violation led to the harms claimed in the suit. For these claims, the plaintiffs cited the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act, but the court held they had not alleged the sorts of commercial relationships with the defendants necessary to establish a right of action under that law.

The court’s decision is a reminder of the critical importance of the PLCAA to preserving the Second Amendment in America. It should come as no surprise, then, that Hillary Clinton has promised to pursue repeal of the PLCAA if elected to the presidency.  

It should also come as no surprise that the plaintiffs have already expressed their intention to appeal today’s ruling. We will report on further developments as they occur.

Source: NRA / ILA


Winter boating update

Colder weather is upon us, but you can still enjoy the water.

Be aware that between Nov. 1 and April 30 each year,
Pennsylvania boating law requires a life jacket be worn by ALL people aboard any water craft less than 16 feet in length, which would include small boats, canoes and kayaks.

Wearing a life jacket in cold water may save your life!

The body's first reaction to immersion in cold water is frequently an involuntary gasp, which can lead to swallowing water, and can also lead to changes in heart rhythm.

The colder the water temperature,
the less time a person can remain conscious and survive.

A life jacket will keep you afloat even if your body is unable to respond.

Learn more about
boating in PA on the Fish and Boat Commission website.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns regarding this or any state-related issue, please
contact my office.

Source: Rep. Harry A. Readshaw


Additional State Forest Roads Opening Across the State For Hunting Seasons, Other Outdoor Activities

Hunters and other outdoors enthusiasts heading into Pennsylvania’s state-owned woodlands this autumn will find additional roads open in 18 of the 20 state forest districts, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources announced today.

“We know improved accessibility and DCNR’s promotion of deer hunting where needed benefits forest regeneration and the overall ecosystem,” said DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn. “As a result, the Bureau of Forestry is opening more than 540 miles of state forest roads normally open only for administrative use. They again will be available to hunters, hikers, foliage viewers and others visiting state forestlands this fall.”

More than 3,000 miles of state forest roadways will be open during the statewide archery deer season, which opens Saturday, Oct. 1, and closes Saturday, Nov. 12. They will continue to stay open through other hunting seasons continuing into January, 2017.

“Regardless of whether they seek deer, bear, turkey or small game, hunters in our state forests will find more than 90 percent of that land now is within one-half mile of an open road,” said Dunn.

With the hunter in mind, DCNR continues to update a new interactive map of state forestlands across Pennsylvania that offers details on newly opened roads, timber harvesting activity, forestry office contact numbers and more.

Meanwhile, top-quality hunting is offered at many state parks -- especially those in the 12.5-county Pennsylvania Wilds region -- where state forestland often surrounds them. Inexpensive camping can be found at many of those parks.

Primitive camping on state forestlands is also an option, giving hunters a backcountry camping or hunting experience. Camping permits, issued by the managing forest district, are required when camping on state forestlands on designated sites.

Many of these campsites are close to state parks and forestlands enrolled in the Pa. Game Commission’s Deer Management Assistance Program, permitting hunters to take one antlerless deer or more when properly licensed. Hunters are advised to check with state forests district headquarters or state park offices about availability.

Hunters traveling to some north central areas of the state are reminded some hunting areas and travel routes may be impacted by Marcellus Shale-related activities. Some state forest roads may be temporarily closed during drilling operations or other peak periods of heavy use to reduce potential safety hazards.

Some state forest roads only will be opened for the second week of the traditional rifle season because they cannot withstand the expected heavy traffic of the first week of that season. Two- or three-month long openings will be in effect only where there is minimal threat of damage or deterioration to road surfaces or forest surroundings.

For more information on Pennsylvania’s 20 state forest districts and 120 state parks, visit and select “Find a Forest” or “Find a Park.”

The new interactive state forest map can be viewed at

Marcellus Shale information can be found on Bureau of Forestry pages under “Natural Gas Drilling on State Forests.” Camping opportunities and details can be found on both the “Forestry” and “State Park” pages.

Source: PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources