Orange County Shooters
News from the Orange County NY, NY State and the Nation of interest to gun owners and sportsmen
AUGUST 2002 Newsletter
New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
Legislative Report by
Jacob J. Rieper, Legislative Director
SCOPE provides Current Firearms News, Updated Daily!
Plattsburgh Rod & Gun
Keep and Bear Arms Homepage
Gun Owners of America Newsletters 
October 11th
e-mail me for more info 
Shawangunk Fish & Game Sportsmens Extravaganza.
Orange County Getting ready for DEC's new License system, DECAL
Petition error ends primary bid against Asemblywoman Nancy Calhoun
Sheriff Bigger withdraws from bid for spot on Independence Party
Opponent accuses Bigger campaign of fraud
Eric Hall vs Rep. Hinchey for new 22nd Congressional District
FED COURTS ACCEPTS WEIN CHALLENGE Board of Elections must justify knocking Wein off ballot 
Big changes in NY Hunting and Fishing Licenses, New licenses to start Aug. 26
Wein short of signatures in primary bid
Lawmakers tout bill aimed at shielding gun makers from lawsuits
A talk with Scott Armstrong, the NRA NY State paid lobbiest. UPDATE 8/16/02
Legal Earthquake Jolts Gun Manufacturers; California Legislators Repeal Gun Industry Immunity
New U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service director promises to 'restore balance' 
Wal Mart changes NICS policy
Senators Seek to Expand Gun Background Checks
HCI attacks pro-gun Democrat Rep. John Dingell
Panhandle man invents bullet to prevent accidental shootings
Michigan Dems. embrace gun rights. (New shall issue rules.)
Full auto, automatic SUV
Full auto, remote controlled 50cal.
(Clip downloads are bigger.)
Requests for concealed weapons permits have soared in the wake of recent slayings of three Baton Rouge women by a serial killer.  Gov. Foster urges Concealed Carry
President of the Urban League of Metro. Seattle, takes plea for having a firearm while attending a meeting on a high-school campus for defense.
Pistol goes off accidentally at reception for Rep. Bob Barr, follows NRA   rule #1. Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction, no one hurt. 
 The  "Midway...Model 1292...Tumbler" was recalled in 1998 for being a fire hazard.  Stop using these tumblers, call Midway (800) 243-2506 between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. CST week days to make arrangements for returning the tumbler for free repair.  ( I have one, I never knew?)  CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO
CCRKBA: Victory! California Gun Owners Beat Back Bullet Tax
Test suspects for HIV, cop asks (NY S1626)
The rise in crime in England for the past 100 years as new gun control laws were passed.
Emory continues probe of 'Arming America' author
The FBI, the INS  & 3 other Justice Department law enforcement agencies had at least 775 weapons stolen, lost or missing.  (British) Gun law off-target. (Guns used in the Commonwealth Games were transported armored cars.) 
by Jacob J. Rieper, Legislative Director New York State Rifle & Pistol Association
8/25/02      Ulster County will begin issuing new credit card type pistol licenses starting September 30. The new licenses will include a digitized photo of the license holder, their thumbprint and signature. When a  license holder wants to make an amendment, they will be receive a new license with the gun information embedded in it. The cost will rise from $5 to $10, however, there will no longer be a need to supply photographs as the sheriff's department will use digital cameras.
Shawangunk Fish & Game Sportsmens Extravaganza.
     Everyone had a lot of fun at this years event.  They had several events and a few vendors and I had a booth.  Two taxidermist had large displays, they had displays of ATVs and several venders were around.  They had a 3D archery shoot, a kids fishing contest, a bucket raffle, a handgun shoot, a rifle shoot, a chicken dinner, a marshmallows roast and bonfire and other events.  IT WAS HOT, but everyone had a good time.
     They had a great kids fishing contest with lots of kids and lots of caught fish.
Kids Fishing Contest Run by the Orange County Trapppers
Orange County NYOrange County Getting ready for DEC's new License system, DECAL
by OCShooters.com

     The new DECAL license system is being installed in Orange County.   A stop by the Blooming Grove town hall found them with 2 new printers especially made for the program.  One was for the licenses and one was for your receipt.  The program was installed on their computer and they were starting to train on the system.  Just expect some problems and incorrect answers where ever you go.  It is a new system, all of the rules are changed and no one knows how everything works yet.

Orange County NY buttonPetition error ends primary bid against Asemblywoman Nancy Calhoun
from midhudsonnews.com

     A state Supreme Court justice in Albany yesterday threw out Lawrence DeLarose's petitions to challenge Assemblywoman Nancy Calhoun in a September Republican primary next month.  The judge, citing a previous case, said DeLarose's petitions did not pass muster because they did not specify that he was running to be a member of the Assembly in the 96th Assembly District.  DeLarose is upset by the decision, especially since the state Board of Elections already approved his petitions and Calhoun, the GOP incumbent, challenged them. "I'm more for the people who signed my petitions - over 600 of them - who wanted a choice on September 10th and now apparently, because of a court action are going to be denied that, even after the Board of Elections certified me as a candidate in the primary," he said.
      DeLarose is undecided if he will appeal to the Appellate Division of State Supreme Court. But, he vowed to run in two years.
     Calhoun, meanwhile, said as of today, she is glad to be running as the GOP standard-bearer in the November election: "We will wait and see what the outcome of this is, but I am very pleased that, at this point, am the sole Republican candidate and look forward to campaigning," she said.
      The Democratic opponent in the race is Orange County legislator Roxanne Donnery.

Orange County NY Button Sheriff Bigger withdraws from bid for spot on Independence Party

     Orange County Sheriff Frank Bigger withdrew his bid to appear on the Independence Party ballot line yesterday after a campaign worker testified she had signed off on several nominating petitions she had never seen signed.  That admission of a violation of state election law and possibly criminal law threw into doubt Bigger's hopes to keep a ballot line in his re-election bid this fall.
     Under sheriff John E. Thompson's secretary testified that in July she acted as witness to petitions for Bigger and Patrick J. Berardinelli Jr., a candidate for coroner.  Shirley Switala, 36, of Mount Hope, tearfully acknowledged she had not witnessed what her signature implied she had seen.
     It was stated that Bigger had limited contact with the people who prepared the petitions. 

MY2¢  It is impossible to understand how something like this could happen.  These people have passed out petitions for many campaigns so they should know the rules and they should know that the person that is the witness has to witness the person signing the petition.  Missing from the story is who asked or directed that Shirley Switala violate the law and sign as a witness.
     To witness a signature on a petition you have to be a member of the same party that the petition is for or you have to be a notary and you have to WITNESS THE SIGNATURE.
Opponent accuses Bigger campaign of fraud
8/9/02, By Timothy O'Connor, Times Herald-Record, toconnor@th-record.com

     Goshen Helen Wagner's name is right there on line five, Page 12, of Sheriff H. Frank Bigger's petitions for the Independence Party line in November's election. Her address is there, too. So is the date, July 22, 2002.  There's just one problem, Helen Wagner, a registered Independence Party member, never signed any such petition.  "It is not my signature," the Middletown woman said in a sworn affidavit, "nor did I sign or authorize anyone to sign on my behalf." 
      Bigger, the top law enforcement official in the county, was accused of fraud yesterday by the campaign of Carl DuBois, his opponent in the Sept. 10 Republican primary.  The petitions Bigger submitted to garner the Independence line are "permeated with fraud," said Kevin Hayden, DuBois' campaign manager, in court papers filed yesterday in state Supreme Court in Goshen.  The DuBois campaign charged that Bigger's campaign workers forged signatures of some voters among the 377 signatures filed last week. The DuBois campaign said the alleged forgeries, along with incorrect addresses and incomplete signatures, should invalidate 213 of those signatures, leaving Bigger 52 signatures short of the required number to get the line.  The DuBois campaign wants state Supreme Court Justice Joseph G. Owen to knock out those signatures. The campaign also filed complaints with the county Board of Elections.  With the Independence line, Bigger would be guaranteed a spot on the November ballot. DuBois, a retired Middletown police lieutenant, already has the Conservative Party endorsement. John Whiffen, the Town of Highlands police chief, is the Democratic candidate. 
      Susan Bahren, an elections board commissioner, said yesterday that her office is reviewing Bigger's petitions. 
DuBois said yesterday that the incident is an example of what he calls poor management by Bigger, who is seeking a third term.  "I'm very disappointed in the sheriff that he didn't examine those petitions himself," he said. "I think he's got a lot of explaining to do." 
Harry Ross, the head of the county's Independence Party, could not be reached yesterday for comment.  His son, A.J., said a Bigger campaign worker asked him to sign his dad's name after he told him his father was out of town. 
That is a violation of state election law.  "I said, 'No way,' " A.J. Ross, 22, said yesterday. 
      Jacqueline Ricciani, Bigger's lawyer, labeled the accusations "ludicrous."  Ricciani, who had not seen the DuBois campaign's affidavits, also said, "The allegations that the petitions are permeated with fraud is outrageous, especially since they haven't produced one piece of proof to support that.

Eric HallEric Hall vs Rep. Hinchey for new 22nd Congressional District22nd in Orange County, Click on image to see the full map

Eric Hall, (R), will be running against Rep. Maurice D., (I tried to carry a loaded gun onto an airplane and all  they did to me was take away the gun,) Hinchey, (D), for the newly formed 22nd Congressional District. The new district is made up of most of Rep. Hinchy's old 26th district and parts of Rep. Ben Gilman's old 20th District that was cut up when the new districts were created this year. The old 26th district did not include as much of Orange County. The new 22nd District lines were drawn to favor Hinchey and includes a section of Orange County that includes the Democratic stronghold of Middletown where our own Sen. H****** R**** C****** introduced Maurice to the crowd at her recent "Town Hall Meeting". 

Board of Elections must justify knocking Wein off ballot 
August 14, 2002 , from Wein Press Release
     Staten Island, NY. - The federal Court yesterday afternoon issued an Order to Show Cause against the state Board of Elections why Republican primary challenger, Louis de la Guardia Wein, should not be on the ballot for the scheduled September 10, 2002 Republican primary election.  The Order to Show Cause and grant injunctive relief is based on charges that the Board of Elections and the NYS Legislature conspired to violate voters' and the candidate's constitutionally-protected Rights of speech, association and petition. They also conspired to abuse and infringe voters' and all candidates' rights to equal protection of the laws and due process. Judge J. Trager of the United States Court, Eastern District of New York, signed the Order for a hearing scheduled for August 26, 2002.
    "This is the first victory in a series of victories that will make Governor George E. Pataki eat his hypocritical words of working for fair, free and open elections" Wein said.  "This is a first-step in a process that will break the stranglehold that self-serving, career politicians have over the people", Wein said. "It's about time that the people, as in our constitutional 'We, the People', take back our government and put an end to the phony-baloney that comes out of career politicians mouths who are really only interested in how much money and retirement benefits they can steal for themselves from the people", Wein continued.
Big changes in NY Hunting and Fishing Licenses
CLICK HERE TO LINK TO THE DEC WEB PAGE "Changes for 2002-2003"

UPDATE FROM PoughkeepsieJournal.com, 8/15/02
New licenses to start Aug. 26
Updated license, fee schedule for hunters

     The NY DEC has some big changes in store for Sept. 1.  The following are some of the things that are going to change on Sept. 1st:

  •  Fees for most licenses will go up
  •  Types of Licenses will change.  Some types are combined or include additional privileges
  •  Deer Hunting Licenses Privileges and Tags have changed
  •  The new DECALS (DEC Automated Licensing System) will start.
  •  You will report your take by phone.
  •  New computer lottery system to issue DMP tags so that winners are issued DMP tags immediately.  Follow up lotteries allow all DMP tags to be issued.
  •  You can now transfer DMP tags to others.
  •  Their have been changes to Deer Bag Limits
  •  Black Powder shooters can now use scopes in all seasons
     The biggest change is that all of the licenses will be issued using the new automated DECALS system.  The system was supposed to be up and running by now but the date has been pushed back to AUG. 19th and it might slip some more. 
Wein short of signatures in primary bid
The Staten Island Advance, July 26, 2002, By ROBERT GAVIN

     ALBANY -- To force a Republican gubernatorial primary against Gov. George E. Pataki this fall, Clifton businessman Louis Wein needed at least 15,000 signatures of support by midnight last night.  He got about 5,000. Four hundred of them are Staten Islanders.  But despite coming up some 10,000 names shy of the requirement, Wein still filed papers with the state Board of Elections yesterday -- and he has now pegged his candidacy on the hope a federal judge will let his name appear on a GOP ballot come September. "We filed knowing we would go to federal court," Wein told the Advance yesterday after traveling to Albany to submit the paperwork. 
My 2¢     In Orange County, many people worked very hard at getting Wein on the ballot and they got a large % of the total signatures.  It is bad thing that Wein could not get on with signatures and he should have been able to get 100,000 or more but did not happen.  Politics is a hard life and it does take a lot to get that many people to support you but that is the way it is.  Those who worked so hard to should be proud of what they did and anyone who did not find someway to sign a petition or in some way help should feel regret and should try to do something the next time they have a chance.

Lawmakers tout bill aimed at shielding gun makers from lawsuits
By JOE PARMON-Telegram Staff Writer 
NY Sportsmen Alert 

     ILION -- While visiting with Remington Arms Company officials Tuesday, Assemblyman William Magee (D-Nelson) said protecting jobs at the Ilion plant is a key element in a bill he is co-sponsoring that would limit the liability of gun-makers in deaths or injuries caused by their firearms.   Remington officials stressed the strong need for the bill's passage, saying that warding off lawsuits filed against gun manufacturers is a cost that manufacturers can ill afford if they hope to stay in business. "The passage of this bill is vital to the future of our industry," said senior vice president of manufacturing Paul Cahan. "I thank people like Assemblyman Magee for having the courage to stand up and try and protect jobs in the Mohawk Valley." 
      Assemblyman Marc Butler (R-Newport) said that safeguarding jobs in Ilion through passage of the firearm bill was a concern for the entire state, not just for the Mohawk Valley.  Although the bill is currently held up in the Judiciary Committee, and will likely not have a chance to be reintroduced until the start of the next legislative session, Magee restated his commitment to the legislation during his remarks. Still, Magee knows it will be an uphill battle in Albany as supporters of the bill face some determined opposition. 

A07447SPONSOR Gunther COSPNSR Magee: Summary: SAME AS Same as S 2458 
A07448 SPONSOR Magee; Summary: SAME AS Same as S 2458, A 7447 
SAME AS Same as A 7447 

A talk with Scott Armstrong, the NRA NY State paid lobbyist.

     I had a short talk with the NRA's paid lobbyist about how this legislative session went.  The NRA considers this year a relative victory in NY rather than a draw. No harm was done to gun owners in a major election year -- a major improvement.  Next year we will work on getting some pro-gun owner legislation passed.  One close call was won when wording was taken out of some legislation that was passed after 911 that would have given the Gov. power over the ownership, sale and possession of firearms in an emergency. 
      Scott has been under attack by some people who support Louis Wein's bid to primary against Gov. Mario Pataki.  A general outline is that Louis Wein was on a radio show and he talked about the support that he was getting from the pro-gun groups and sports clubs.  NRA support was strongly inferred on the radio show but not directly stated by Mr. Wein and Scott Armstrong felt like he had to call in and his brief comment was meant to clarify Mr. Wein's statement and was not intended to express support or opposition to any candidate for office. -- It is NRA policy, (I called the NRA to verify it,) to not endorse any candidate for any office prior to qualification as a legal candidate, for instance, qualifying for the ballot and as far as I know there has not been an exception to this policy in New York State. --Scott said that he never offered support for one gubernatorial candidate over another. 
     I have talked to several supporters of Wein and they are very upset and said that Mr. Armstrong misrepresented his position with the NRA when he was asked to identify himself by the radio show host.   They said that Scott stated that any endorsement from the NRA would have to go across his desk and that Scott implied that he knew Wein better than he does.  They also said that  Scott called Wein a liar and looser and gave poll numbers showing how far Gov. Mario Pataki was leading in Gov's race.
      Scott said that he knows and personally supported Wein's campaign stance on the Second Amendment, (as I did,) but even when I heard Wein speak locally, Wein said that he did not have the "Official support" of the NRA but expected it, but did have the support of the NYSRPA and other NY State and local groups.  I, along with anyone reading this, understands the difference but that is something that many people tuning into a radio show might not. It would have been valid for Scott to call in to make sure that people understood the NRA's policy on endorsement but I do not know why he felt like he had to bring up how well Gov. Mario Pataki was doing in the polls or some of the other things.
     I think that things would be different if Wein had gotten close to the signatures that he needed to get on the primary ballot but unfortunately Wein fell short by a wide margin.  As far as Scott Armstrongs fate and punishment, the NRA will have to decide what they will do.  While some are upset with Scott, and no one can understand why he talked about Mario Pataki's poll numbers or other issues besides the NRA policy on endorsement, I don't think that he should be given a life sentence.  He has the position with the NRA and he is who we have to work with and we can hope that he learns from this.  We all need to try to work together as much as we can and we should not argue over issues that would sidetrack us. (I do not think that anyone made a taped the show.  Wein supporters have called the NRA to complain.) 
8/16/02  I had a long talk with Rebecca Williams, the NRA-ILA NY State Liaison.  She denied the rumor that the NRA is supporting Gov. Mario Pataki and said that the NRA, "has not taken a position in the Governors race to date."  She also said that, "It has never been our objective to damage Louis Wein's as a candidate and the NRA knows that their is no doubt that Wein is a true supporter of the 2nd Amendment."
My 2¢  Please remember that the NRA-ILA is following it's policy on endorsement like they do in every election in ever state in every race.  What ever miss-communications happened, it has been address and something like this should never happen again and to repeat myself, "We all need to try to work together as much as we can and we should not argue over issues that would sidetrack us."


Legal Earthquake Jolts Gun Manufacturers;
California Legislators Repeal Gun Industry Immunity

     LOS ANGELES, Calif., Aug. 23 /U.S. Newswire/ -- In a major defeat for the gun industry, California is about to become the first state in the country to repeal special legal immunity for gun manufacturers as the State Assembly approved SB 682 by Senator Don Perata today. An identical measure, AB 496 by Assemblyman Paul Koretz, passed the State Senate last week. The bills effectively overturn a California Supreme Court decision, which held that a 1983 law created a special immunity shield for gun manufactures. Gun manufacturers could now be held legally accountable for their conduct. Supporters expect Gov. Gray Davis to sign the bills since Davis voted against the 1983 immunity bill when he was in the Assembly.
     MY 2¢  This will open the door to a flood of lawsuits in Cal. by just about anyone for any reason.  HCI could not be happier.

New U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service director promises to 'restore balance'

     If the new director of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service keeps his promise, there'll be rejoicing among millions of American anglers. Steve Williams, speaking to more than 100 state fisheries officials and angler activists during festivities last week that accompanied the annual BASS Masters Classic fishing championship in Birmingham, Ala., vowed to "restore balance" to his agency's fisheries program. 
      Before Williams took office earlier this year, the F&WS had been the recipient of much criticism by outdoorsmen for its neglect of recreational fishing (as well as hunting).  Along came Williams, who told the BASS Classic crowd, "Fishermen and hunters are the first line of conservation defense."  "You all are in a position to lead the direction of conservation of aquatic resources in America," Williams said. "We need your help. Help guide us in the development of this document." 
     The "document" is the draft of a fisheries program strategic plan developed with the cooperation of the Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council, which includes the sanctioning body of the annual BASS Classic, the international Bass Anglers Sportsman Society.  The fact that Williams is a fisherman and hunter, unlike previous F&WS directors, brings hope to Americans who share his recreational passions. He also is a wildlife biologist and has served in the state ranks of resource management, most recently as secretary of the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks. 
     The plan says, "The vision of the Service and its Fisheries Program is a future of healthy aquatic systems that are populated with an abundance of fish and other aquatic organisms. To achieve this vision, the Fisheries Program will work with its partners to 1) Protect the health of aquatic habitats. 2) Restore fish and other aquatic resources. 3) Provide opportunities to enjoy the benefits of healthy aquatic resources."  The plan also emphasizes partnerships with states, tribes and anglers as the main means to achieve its objectives of conserving fish and other aquatic resources and enhancing opportunities for fishing on F&WS lands.

Changing the Posse Comitatus Act

     Bush administration officials are thinking about changing the Posse Comitatus Act, of 1878, which makes it a criminal offense to use U.S. military forces "to execute the laws."  The National Strategy for Homeland Security the administration released on July 16 suggests the time may have come to weaken the protections provided by the Act. As it's phrased in the National Strategy, "The threat of catastrophic terrorism requires a thorough review of the laws permitting the military to act within the United States." 
      From suppression of strikers in the 19th century, to the deaths at Kent State, to the 1997 Marine Corps killing of an American high school student at the Mexican border, deviation from our tradition of civilian law enforcement has had grave consequences throughout American history. 
     In 1981, Congress weakened the Posse Comitatus Act substantially to allow military involvement in the war on drugs. Misuse of the "drug exceptions" to the act helped lead to the worst disaster in U.S. law enforcement history: the 1993 tragedy in Waco, Texas. Federal law enforcement authorities used false allegations of methamphetamine trafficking by the Branch Davidians to obtain military hardware and personnel. Indeed, it was U.S. Army Delta Force commanders who advised federal agents to launch a tank assault against the Branch Davidians' dwellings. The result was more than 80 dead, including 27 children. If anything needs review and revision, it's the ill-considered exceptions to the Posse Comitatus Act.

Wal Mart changes NICS policy

      Wal Mart, one of the largest gun dealers in the nation, has changed its policy regarding the required Federal NICS background check.  Below is an excerpt from the policy statement on their web site

     In June 2002, Wal-Mart made the voluntary decision not to make a gun sale to anyone until we receive an approved background check from the National Instant Check System (NICS), even if the approval process lasts longer than three business days. Currently, gun retailers can legally make a gun sale without NICS approval, if that approval is still pending after three business days. 
      After reviewing the facts and considering the issue, it was clear that this decision is simply the right thing to do. 
      Historically, more than 99 percent of our gun sales are approved through the NICS approval process within three business days, so this should affect only a fraction of our sales. In addition, of the background checks that are still pending after three business days, we learned that a relatively high percentage of these are ultimately turned down through NICS.
Senators Seek to Expand Gun Background Checks
By Jeff Johnson, CNSNews.com Congressional Bureau Chief, July 31, 2002

     Capitol Hill (CNSNews.com) - Four senators, calling themselves an "odd quad," joined together Tuesday to expand the database of information used to permit or deny gun purchases through the FBI's "National Instant Check System."  The four introduced the "Our Lady of Peace Act," which is identical to the companion bill of the same name in the House (H.R. 4757, sponsored in the House by McCarthy-Dingell.)  The bill is named after a church in Lynbrook, N.Y., where the pastor and a parishioner were shot to death by a man who had a history of mental illness and violent behavior, and was under a restraining order for domestic violence - which he had violated at least twice - when the shooting occurred. 
      "We are an odd group," Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said of his colleagues: Sens. Larry Craig (R-Idaho), John McCain (R-Ariz.), and Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.). "But not when it comes to making sure that guns are kept away from drug addicts, felons, illegal aliens, and others."  "The problem is that this kind of information is not always shared with the NICS system," Schumer said. "And so, when the background check is performed, the information never appears, the red flags aren't raised, and the gun purchase goes right through."  Craig said the government has a responsibility to make background checks instant, accurate, and complete, and no excuse for not doing so.  "In a nation where you can walk into any store and swipe your credit card and have an instant accounting of your financial capabilities," he explained, "we cannot do something similar to determine whether that individual is legal or illegal in the action of purchasing a firearm, shame on us as a system for not doing that." 
      The legislation would mandate that information be provided to the FBI for inclusion in NICS on individuals who: 

  • Are under indictment or have been convicted of a crime punishable by more than one year in prison;
  • Are fugitives from justice; 
  • Are unlawful users and/or addicts of any controlled substance;
  • Have been adjudicated as mentally defective or have been committed to any mental institution;
  • Are subject to a court order restraining them from domestic violence; or
  • Have been convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor.
     The proposal would provide grants to the states to establish or upgrade information and identification technologies for firearms eligibility determinations; and to improve the reporting of criminal history dispositions and temporary restraining orders as they relate to disqualification from firearms ownership.  McCain noted that checking mental health records, which are seldom automated, has been the main impediment to truly "instant" background checks.  "Probably ten or 15 years ago, technology would not allow us to consider this kind of legislation," he said. "I hope that, with the passage of this bill, that we will be able to, with further improvements in technology, provide for the instant background checks that all of us seek." 
      Schumer attempted to calm the fears of mental health advocates, who worry personal information about their clients could be inadvertently released by the NICS system.  "We've taken real precautions on that, to really guard the privacy of the mentally ill," he said. "It should be on the record that somebody's mental illness, or being committed to an institution doesn't allow them to have a gun, but all the details are still kept completely away, even from the [NICS] system." 
      Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America (GOA), says the bill still risks the privacy of the mentally ill, and makes a very incorrect assumption about mental illness. "We object to that as a violation of their medical privacy rights," he told CNSNews.com . "Also, just on pragmatic grounds, knowing that someone has had a mental problem in the past has absolutely nothing to do with predicting future violent behavior."  Pratt points to research published in "Violence and Mental Disorder: Development in Risk Assessment" by John Monahan and Henry Steadman (University of Chicago Press). The study found that mental health professionals could not accurately predict violent behavior even in a group of known mentally ill criminals with a history of violence.  "Psychiatrists and psychologists are accurate in no more than one out of three predictions of violent behavior over a several-year period among institutionalized populations that had both committed violence in the past (and thus had high base rates for it), and who were diagnosed as mentally ill," the report stated.  "They would have done better flipping a coin," Pratt quipped.  The individual responsible for the "Our Lady of Peace" murders was not arrested for the two previous violations of a restraining order, offenses that would have carried mandatory jail time had he been arrested.  "Why didn't they pick him up?" Pratt asked, rhetorically. 
      Gun Owners of America has compiled documentation of numerous instances where mandatory background checks and other delays cost citizens their lives.  In one such incident, Bonnie Elmasri wanted to obtain a gun to protect herself from her husband, who had repeatedly threatened to kill her. Before the mandatory waiting period and background check had been completed, her husband killed Elmasri and her two sons. 
      GOA research has also documented instances where individuals denied firearms by the NICS system were able to obtain them illegally.  The group cites the 1999 case of Benjamin Smith, who was rejected by a background check when he tried to buy a weapon from an Illinois gun dealer. According to a published report, Smith "hit the streets and in just three days had two handguns" from an illegal source. Less than a week after being "prohibited" from obtaining a gun by the NICS system, Smith shot two people to death and wounded nine others. 
      Pratt believes the legislation is merely another attempt to exploit a tragic event with the actual goal of chipping away at the Second Amendment right of individuals to own and possess firearms.  "It's just another 'Schumer & Company' effort to expand the number of Americans who are 'legally' prohibited from owning a gun," he added. "And what Schumer is talking about is not going to make anybody any safer, at all." 
      The co-sponsors expect both the Senate and House to pass the proposal after the August recess. They say they have been working with the Justice Department to insure that the language of the measure is acceptable to the White House in hopes that the bill would be signed into law before the end of the year.
New TSA Head 'Hesitant' About Arming Pilots
By Jeff Johnson, CNSNews.com Congressional Bureau Chief, July 25, 2002 
    Capitol Hill (CNSNews.com) - The new acting director of the Transportation Security Agency says he is "hesitant" about proposals to train and voluntarily arm commercial airline pilots with deadly weapons to defend against terrorist attacks.  Adm. James Loy, acting Undersecretary for Transportation Security, made the statement to the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee Thursday morning.  "I need to learn about this and get up the learning curve very quickly," he said of proposals that the TSA screen, train, and arm pilot volunteers to serve as a last line of defense against potential terrorist hijackings. "I can say that on the upshot, I'm hesitant, but I'm also being directed to conduct a review, and I will do that."   Loy said the TSA is currently investigating the potential ramifications of arming pilots and he wants to "be objective" in examining the results of that review. 
     Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Mont.) says he's looking forward to Loy's answer, but feels there may already have been too much investigation and not enough action.  "I think some of these cases, whenever we start talking about homeland security, have to be based, sometimes, on gut feeling and common sense," he said. "And I think we'd better start making these decisions right away." 
HCI attacks pro-gun Democrat Rep. John Dingell
DINGELL WINS PRIMARY by 59 percent, to anti-gun, HCI backed  Lynn Rivers' 41 percent.
Additional Stories: Leftist lobbies suffer a hit in Michigan race &
An Old-Style Victory in Michigan Democratic Base Propels Dingell

(CNSNews.com 7/26/02) - The dean of the U.S. House of Representatives, Democrat John Dingell, is being targeted for defeat by one of America's most prominent gun control groups, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.  The Brady Campaign has launched a website to criticize what it calls Dingell's "dismal record" on "gun violence protection." Dingell, who has represented Michigan in Congress for nearly 47 years, is the first to be named to the Brady Campaign's "Dangerous Dozen" list of congressional candidates in this year's elections. Other names will follow. 

Most people will remember that it was Pro-gun Rep. Dingell that, several years ago, was a leader in defeating a bill that would have closed the "Gun Show Loop Hole" that would have also closed many gun shows and would have added miles of red tape to those who wanted to put on anything that might look like a gun show. It was the failure of the Anti-gun radical left to compromise that prompted Dingell and some other pro-gun Democrats to defeat the bill. 
Panhandle man invents bullet to prevent accidental shootings

PANAMA CITY, Fla. July 29, 2002, AP- Accidental shootings involving children nationally along with one next door prompted Mike Worley to invent a bullet to prevent such tragedies.  Worley, a professional photographer and gun enthusiast who belongs to the National Rifle Association, turned in a patent application earlier this year for the design that will lock up a gun when accidentally fired. 
      In case after case, children have shot themselves or playmates with guns that adults had hidden away and even locked up, Worley said Monday.  The Safety Bullet would be left in the firing chamber. If the owner needed to shoot the weapon for self protection it could be quickly ejected, clearing the way for a real bullet in the next chamber.  If someone should pull the trigger with the Safety Bullet in the firing chamber, however, it would jam the weapon until removed with a special tool. 


Times Herald-Record
O C Shooters