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Friday, Sep. 19, 2014

Packin' heat at the bar

Posted Friday, May 7, 2010, at 2:07 PM

A National Rifle Association lobbyist has urged Tennessee's House Republican Caucus to allow handgun permit holders to go armed into businesses which derive less than their income from food sales.

In other words, bars.

This isn't the Wild West and sometimes I think if the NRA had its way our cell phones would probably incorporate guns.

The key words here are "handgun permit holders."

I'd like to think a legitimate permit holder would act responsibly.

But alcohol and weapons don't mix.

I wonder if a felony-class law for using a gun while under the influence would be a deterrent.

The NRA is a valuable resource for law-abiding Americans who don't want their right to own weapons for sport, hunting, self-protection (two more key words) and/or collecting to be lost. I support their efforts up to that point. But, realizing that criminals won't follow laws anyway, I think some pro-gun/anti-regulatory individuals and groups would go far that it would end up making it easier for the bad guys.

Sometimes the NRA can go just a little too far in what seems to be an unfounded fear that individuals won't be allowed to own a gun. This is one of those times.


Comments
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I understand where you're coming from, but as a responsible carry permit holder, it gets really frustrating when you realize that its pretty much only good to carry your handgun in your car or house. I have really tried my best not to do business with a place that doesn't allow me to carry my gun. I don't go to bars but if I did I don't see the problem with having my handgun on me. I don't go to places looking for a gunfight, its supposed to be my constitutional right to carry and to be able to defend myself and my family. On the other hand I do understand the fears and concerns some people have with others carrying a weapon, but I assure you the bad guys are doing it anyway.

-- Posted by greasemonkey on Fri, May 7, 2010, at 2:37 PM

You hit the proverbial nail right on the old head this time greasemonkey. I agree 100%.

-- Posted by Tim Lokey on Fri, May 7, 2010, at 4:34 PM

The point here is how does an average person know if a restaurant derives 49% or 51% of it's income from food?

Several restaurants get less than half from food sales, pay the fine, and continue as usual.

The NRA is just saying the onus shouldn't be on an individual who has no access to the financial records of a business, to decide where their profits come from.

The law that was passed last year was struck down as unconstitutional for that very reason.

-- Posted by quietmike on Fri, May 7, 2010, at 5:46 PM

David, you are probably not aware of this but in a carry permit class(required to get a permit) the students have to be informed it is illegal(permit or not) to drink while in possession of a gun & a DUI conviction causes immediate permit revocation whether you had one when caught or not. Also, if you use a gun you possess illegally in TN you will face felony charges regardless of whether the use was legitimate or not. And, if you know history, the highest murder rate in Dodge City in the 1800's was 6 in 1 year which, in my opinion, deflates the worn-out Wild West reference. Yes, felony class laws do exist & probably do deter permit holders since I don't hear of any using guns while under the influence & I know the media wouldn't ignore it. All permit holders want is to be able to eat in a place that serves alcohol without having to leave their gun in a vehicle. As long as you're not drinking & are discreet, there's nothing wrong with having a gun in a bar(think designated driver) but most won't carry in bars anyway because we agree that the two don't mix. I really wish the media would realize that permit holders are no threat to society because we do obey laws. And, those who carry without permits are already ignoring laws so they won't care if they break a few more.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Fri, May 7, 2010, at 8:51 PM

bjrbrts that is a well stated response.

-- Posted by leeiii on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 4:46 AM

it is rather amusing to watch as strict gun control laws are gradually put into place, accompanied by wild cheering from people opposed to gun control. the carry permit law replaced the second amendment's universal right to bear arms with the government's right to designate who can and cannot carry a firearm. and each of these narrowly targeted laws specifying places where you *are* allowed to carry a firearm moves us closer to the assumption that weapons are not allowed anyplace except where specifically designated by the government. once that principle is well established, it will be child's play to remove the obviously ridiculous places like bars and playgrounds from that list. no matter what you might be told, a plethora of narrowly targeted legislation is not the path to a smaller, less intrusive government.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 10:32 AM

It's a Felony to use a Gun during the commission of a crime. It doesn't matter if your drinking or not. And it's already against current law to be in possession of a firearm if you are intoxicated. And that goes double for Carry Permit Holders who are held "To A Higher Standard", because unlike criminals they went to the effort to get some training. The Law Requires that training.

-- Posted by MyMrMarty on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 1:29 PM

I can see good points from both sides of this argument. I have several friends that have conceal/carry permits. I'm still not sure it's a good idea. In just the last 3 years over 160 innocent people have been killed by supposed "responsible carry permit holders". Including 9 law inforcment officers.

These permit holders weren't people who originally intended for their weapon to be used in a bad way, but it happened.

Evidently sometimes people just snap, and if they happen to have a handgun strapped to their side at the time the outcome can be deadly.

They have shot people in "road rage" incidents, over parking spaces, domestic disputes, and even several mass shootings.

I'm not in any way opposed to ones right to own a gun. I have a couple myself. They just don't leave my property and I don't feel the need to carry it wherever I go. And if I see a person with a gun in a restaurant, bar, walking down the street, etc. it definitly doesn't make me feel safer. You never know if that person is mentally stable.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 2:16 PM

Lazarus, you are 100% correct but at least the permit laws are better than nothing. And I'm betting TN's working toward what Arizona, Alaska &,I think New Hampshire have; open carry for all people who can legally own a gun. So for now, I'll take the little steps. As for Mr Valentine, 160 out of several million(your numbers are nationwide) is miniscule. Still not acceptable but when you compare it to the almost 2 million times a year an armed citizen prevents a crime without firing a shot, your number takes on new perspective. You have the same right not to carry that I have to carry. And, you are very unlikely to ever encounter one of the less than 1% mentally unstable who "slip thru the cracks." I'll take those odds any day.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 6:05 PM

Statistically, permit holders are less likely to commit a gun related crime than are the police.

If we are going to throw around stats, why not concentrate on the 25 Americans killed per day, on average, by illegal aliens?

If saving lives is really the concern, why not address the BIG problem?

http://www.rense.com/general76/12am.htm

-- Posted by quietmike on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 6:18 PM

Good point Mike & that statistic gets smaller when more citizens are armed. The police have no legal responsibility to protect individuals anyway; only to catch criminals after the deed is done. All the more reason to return to our true 2nd amendment rights.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 6:29 PM

bjrbrts- I'm not too sure about your stats. You said that "almost 2 million times a year an armed citizen prevents a crime"

I'm thinking this is probably a number that some conceal/carry website pulled out of their butt, but if I'm wrong and you have some actual stats from a legit source (law enforcment, government, etc.) please prove me wrong.

Until then, the 161 innocent people killed by conceal/carry permit holders takes on the same perspective for me as it always did.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 7:35 PM

Rocket Valentine,

I'm pretty sure you got those stats from the Brady Center, or whatever they're calling themselves these days.

How many of those cases have resulted in convictions?

You know innocent until proven guilty and all.

-- Posted by quietmike on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 7:47 PM

"but at least the permit laws are better than nothing."

no they are not. they are worse. the second amendment was fine without permit laws to limit it.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 8:15 PM

"statistically speaking" there are no meaningful statistics on gun issues. as someone whose livelihood depends on being able to make sense of statistical information, i am accustomed to being appalled at what people call "statistics." somehow people think that cherry picked numbers, with no statistical validity, strengthen their arguments. and that is the case on every subject. when it somes to gun issues, there is the added complication of the NRA, who very effectively blocks the collection of meaningful data. do they have something to hide? that is impossible to say. but they sure must think they do. at any rate, the numbers ya'll are throwing around have no meaning.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 8:53 PM

greasemonkey is right on. A person that has a permit is not gonna act the fool. The criminals will do that for us...and we need to protect ourselves and our families.

-- Posted by 4fabfelines on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 8:55 PM

Mr. Valentine, go to www.GunFacts.info & download the free booklet they offer. It's actually 2.5 million & is well documented, usually by Justice Department statistics. I'm referring to page 27 of that book. Read for yourself & feel free to follow up on their references as I have. And, Lazarus, I still agree with you but also realize that we are climbing out of a deep hole. There's how it should be & how it is. Permit laws require us to get permission to exercise our rights & that disgusts me but it is still progress over what we had 20 years ago. We won't get our rights back overnight but if we keep taking those small steps we will get there.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 8:57 PM

quietmike - All concealed handgun permit holders who were acquitted of shootings were not included in those numbers. Here's the link http://www.vpc.org/ccwkillers.htm

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 9:03 PM

"almost 2 million times a year an armed citizen prevents a crime without firing a shot"

here is a perfect example of a number that was simply concocted out of thin air. (i dont understand why you didnt use the equally popular-and equally nonsensical- 2.5 million times a year). this number does not represent any count of any actual incidents, but was produced by a series of assumptions relating crime data, gun laws, and gun possession. the leaps of logic involved in coming up with this number would have made its creators a laughingstock in any peer reviewed publication. however, in the indiscriminate world of gun-issue statistics, this baby is trotted out there regularly, as if it had even the thinnest veneer of meaning.

please take note that i am a gun-owner who has no issues with gun ownership. i am simply disgusted by the use of blasphemously incorrect "statistics."

-- Posted by lazarus on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 9:13 PM

lazarus - I agree 100 percent. Except maybe the "concocted out of thin air" part. I prefer the "pulled it out of their butt" representation.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 9:23 PM

Lazarus, I was being conservative with the number since I didn't have the page in front of me. I corrected myself. Yes, those statistics are just numbers but if the right methods are used to get them they are useful tools. You are right about the infringement of our rights; now do something about it or please stop ridiculing those of us who at least try to make sense of it. Statistics are not perfect but those who want a more intrusive government use them to great effect. At least the NRA & other pro-gun groups do their best to get all the info they can. And, any way you choose to look at it, the facts are on the pro-gun side. Criminals & intrusive governments fear a well-armed citizenry but society has nothing to fear from it. That is fact.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 9:48 PM

"Yes, those statistics are just numbers but if the right methods are used to get them they are useful tools."

actually, those are just numbers. calling them statistics is a gross misrepresentation. we might be more or less on the same side of this issue, but i find it painful when numbers are abused in this manner.

"At least the NRA & other pro-gun groups do their best to get all the info they can."

actually, the NRA seems hellbent on preventing the accumulation of any meaningful data. they may or may not have anything to hide, but they arent taking any chances. and they have been very effective. usually one can drill down to the base data that is being distorted to "prove" one point or another. but when it comes to firearms we are truly operating in the dark. and while they do prevent the assembly of any logical number based arguments against guns, the irony is that they also prevent the accumulation of meaningful data in their support.

anyway, you shouldnt feel like i am picking on you in particular. there are only three kinds of people in this world. those who understand numbers, and those who dont. most people fit in the "dont" category, which is lucky for me, since it allows me to make a living by understanding numbers.

of course, if you really want to feel like i am making fun of you, try a reference to the fear our "well-armed citizenry" strikes in the government. in military terms, the lunatic fringe is about as fearsome as a deerfly. with a little luck they might irritate you with a bite, but most of the time they just get squished. and none of the time are they capable of dealing you any significant injury. what really protects us from our government is the structure of our military. our military units contain people from all over the country, which means that in order to use them against the population, they would have to fire on their own people. for a military to be effective against its own people, the units need to be composed entirely of people from single locations. that way, in an event such as tiananmen square the chinese government could bring in troops from a distant province to crack down on the protestors. the original troops were from the same area, and would not fire on the protestors. in our case, were we to fire on our military, they would undoubtedly eliminate the armed threat with ease. however, unarmed protestors would be very difficult to deal with.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 10:34 PM

They dealt with the unarmed protesters at Kent State VERY easily.

Consider what Admiral Yamamoto, who had troops from entirely distant lands, said

""You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind each blade of grass.""

-- Posted by quietmike on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 3:34 AM

"They dealt with the unarmed protesters at Kent State VERY easily."

out of how many disturbances & protests during the '60s & '70s, we had one incident of shooting? that wasnt even real soldiers, but undertrained guardsmen. and they did not shoot fellow citizens under orders, they lost their fire discipline under pressure.

"Consider what Admiral Yamamoto, who had troops from entirely distant lands, said(;)""You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind each blade of grass.""" a lot of things have changed in military capability during the intervening 70 years. not to mention the vast difference between an occupying force and domestic troops.

you and your buddies arent nearly as well armed as the iraqui insurgents, and in military terms what have they accomplished against a modern military force? nothing more than deer-fly bites, and that is on their home ground against a foreign occupation. running off into the hills and fighting off an army with your handguns and rifles is a fantasy for 12 year olds.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 10:59 AM

Thank you Mike. Lazarus, I don't feel singled out but I'm quite amused that you dismiss everything I say by telling me what I don't understand but you offer little or no proof of your own. At least Mr. Valentine offered a link for his number which is also in the booklet I invited you to download. For someone who has no problem with gun ownership you're using a lot of anti-gun tactics, like your reference to "running off into the hills." Any group will have its radical element but the overwhelming majority of permit holders are peaceful people who simply want to exercise their God-given right to have the means to defend themselves from those who don't care about the rights of others. We harbor no fantasies of the type you speak of & don't care for those who do any more than you do. History has proven time & again that well-armed societies are more peaceful than those that are not & government sponsored genocide only occurs after the population is disarmed. I know the NRA wants the facts on their side but in 20 years of watching & learning about the gun debate I have found them much more honest & less manipulative than the anti-gun side. And, when the anti's face evidence they can't dispute, they do what you have here; the lawyer's trick of attacking the witness & making fun of the evidence. I don't take it personally; if you had real proof for your point you would have offered it by now. So I thank you for expressing your your opinion; differing opinions promote progress. By the way, an incident like Tianenmen Square did happen here. In DC right after WW1 veteran's rights marchers were fired on by American troops. Look it up for yourself. Again, thank you for your opinion & a lively debate.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 1:28 PM

"We harbor no fantasies of the type you speak of & don't care for those who do any more than you do."

i think that is the crux of this issue for me. i am not happy about the way my side is being represented. and it is unfair to interject that emotion into what has been an unusually temperate discussion for the t-g.

and my unhappiness is compounded by the inexcusable abuse of numbers. i am not offering countering numbers, because there is no meaningful statistical information on this issue. everything i can find, on either side, is so contaminated that it is a sin. however, if you are displeased for me to find fault with your numbers, i could always jump on the equally popular 160 people killed by hcp holders. talk about a meaningless figure. as has been pointed out, 160 anything in a population of 400 million, over multiple years, is infinitesimal. however, scale is not even a necessary argument. the real question is what does one thing have to do with the other. owning an hcp had no bearing on these crimes. access to neither weapons nor victims was obtained by means of an hcp. nor did having an hcp steer these people towards killing someone with a firearm. basically, were none of these people given an hcp, exactly the same number of murders would have occurred. had there been no such thing as an hcp, exactly the same number of murders would have occurred. so what is the point of that "statistic"?

-- Posted by lazarus on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 2:03 PM

Rocket Valentine;

In one of your replies listed above you made the claim that several concealed carry permit holders had actually been responsible for mass shootings. I'm offering you an opportunity to prove your point by naming your resources. I'm quite sure that the liberal, anti christian news media would have been all over these stories in that they would have been headline news for days, if not weeks. However I don't recall any such reports of any kind. Maybe your are in possession of some type of information that no other person has access to, or if you prefer...you just pulled that statistic "out of your butt."

-- Posted by Tim Lokey on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 5:57 PM

Good one tattoos & scars. Funny how the accusers are usually guilty of their own accusations.

Lazarus, I get that you don't like statistics. I use them in my job too. They are estimates & as such they require a margin of error. I have to consider that margin constantly in order to do my job correctly. My offer wasn't limited to statistics; you are welcome to show any legitimate proof you choose. The info I referred to has 300-400 references, many of which are not statistics. And, I am not happy that pro-gun people are represented like you did so I responded, mainly to let others know I don't agree. As I said, I don't take it personally & am not the least bit mad. My experience has been that hunters, shooters & most pro-gun people are usually good, peaceful & trustworthy folks & I want that view known. Now, I have offered proof to back my statements(personal views excluded) & have asked you for something besides your word & opinions. I look forward to seeing it.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 7:38 PM

I do, however, think that Rocket Valentine's 161 number has significance in a couple of ways. First, as I said before, that is a tiny number compared to the number of permit holders in TN let alone nationwide. Rocket didn't intend it but that actually shows far less criminal activity than any other group I can think of. And second, it shows that we as a group are not yet perfect. No human is but we can always keep working toward it. That is the attitude I see from the permit holders I know.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 8:34 PM

obviously i am not successfully communicating. i like numbers. i like statistics. i do not like to see them abused. i dont use statistics in my job. i analyze raw data to produce my own. and i am not disagreeing with any of your points, only the so-called statistics. i'm not in a position to counter your arguments because; one-i basically agree with you and two-nobody on either side of the gun issue uses valid numbers.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 8:38 PM

not that it has any significance in regard to carry permit holders as a whole, but tattoos seemed to doubt these things occurred:

APPOMATTOX, Va. (01/20/10) -- The victims of a gunman's violent rampage in central Virginia included the suspect's sister and brother-in-law, as well as two other adults, three teenagers and a 4-year-old boy, according to authorities who charged the alleged shooter with first-degree murder on Wednesday.

Christopher Bryan Speight, a 39-year-old security guard, surrendered to police at daybreak after leading investigators on an 18-hour manhunt following the slayings at a house in rural central Virginia where deputies found a mortally wounded man and seven bodies.

A bomb squad discovered a multitude of explosives at Speight's home, and crews were detonating the devices into the night.

Speight had no weapons when he surrendered. He was wearing a bulletproof vest over a black fleece jacket, camouflage pants and mud-caked boots. Neither the sheriff nor a state police spokeswoman would disclose what Speight said when he gave up...Appomattox County court records show a concealed weapons permit was issued to a Christopher Bryan Speight...

-- Posted by lazarus on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 9:01 PM

"I do, however, think that Rocket Valentine's 161 number has significance in a couple of ways. First, as I said before, that is a tiny number compared to the number of permit holders in TN let alone nationwide."

unfortunately, it is an incomplete number. with the nra doing all in its power to block the collection of complete data sets, it is impossible to say how permit holders compare to the general public, or any other subset of the population.

my suspicion would be that permit holders include a higher percentage of nut-cases than the general population, just because the permit would appeal to nut-cases. however, the permit would not make them nuts, nor would it change the probability of the nuts doing something... nutty. i have yet to see a reasonable explanation of how a carry permit could lead to acts of violence.

-- Posted by lazarus on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 9:19 PM

Thank you Lazarus & I understood you fine. Your last comment shows we're not perfect. And I'm realistic enough to know the NRA wants results that support them. I've just seen much more manipulation on the other side. I also realize those numbers are what legislators rely heavily on so they do have some use. Maybe someday we can all get it right.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 9:45 PM

As for your nutcases, you may have a point but I haven't seen that to be the case & most who have a permit care enough to get training. They usually become less confrontational because they realize the implications of harming another person. You could be right, I just haven't seen it.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 9:53 PM

I still have yet to see the purpose of arguing about how many people WITH concealed carry permits have committed murder.

What about the number of people without permits that commit murder? I would be willing to bet (just a figure of speech, officer) that the number of people without permits committing murder us WAY higher. Seriously, does it really matter to this debate that someone with a concealed carry permit has committed murder? I don't think so.

Police officers have committed murder but nobody is yelling "Oh no, don't let the police carry guns" just because some schmuck has killed an innocent civilian with one. As a matter of fact, according to state law, police officers are allowed to carry their weapons into bars as long as it's "In the actual discharge of official duties as a law enforcement officer".

My point is that you can't teach people responsibility and common sense. If someone wants to harm someone, they will find a way. Look at the rate of sword assaults in the UK.

-- Posted by Thom on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 10:38 PM

To this debate, yes it does matter because Mr. Melson called into question the behavior of permit holders & whether or not we deserve another privilege(as opposed our right). Your point, however, is absolutely right. People were killing each other long before guns were invented & will continue to after guns are obsolete. And, while you can't teach sense, criminals quickly learn to find other more legitimate means of getting what they want after looking down the barrel of a gun held by someone willing to defend themselves. So I still say more armed citizens carrying in more places will reduce crime & murder. Let's keep & expand what's working.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 9, 2010, at 11:14 PM

I agree with bjrbrts and greasemonkey 100% !!!!

-- Posted by Thatsmystory on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 10:10 AM

Did you know that if you are on the terrorist watch list, you can still buy guns and explosives? The gun lobby is preventing Congress from changing this law.

The gun lobby does not care about your safety in a local bar or restaurant; neither does it care about your safety with terrorists.

-- Posted by Grit on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 11:29 AM

Tattoos & Scars - I did list my resource. If you scroll up to my previous post you'll see a link that shows Associated Press articles from local papers detailing the events. There have been 15 documented mass shootings by conceal/carry permit holders.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 11:30 AM

Rocket Valentine - Could you also show how many "mass shootings" have been carried out by those without conceal/carry permits?

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 11:35 AM

Did you know that if you are on the terrorist watch list, you can still buy guns and explosives? The gun lobby is preventing Congress from changing this law.

The gun lobby does not care about your safety in a local bar or restaurant; neither does it care about your safety with terrorists.

-- Posted by Grit

Can you provide the criteria that is used to put someone on a "terrorist watch list"?

Or more importantly, what procedure must be followed to remove yourself from it if you are erroneously put on it?

Bet you can't.

-- Posted by quietmike on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 12:15 PM

Actually, this law simply give property rights back to the proprietor of a business by allowing THEM to make the decision as to whether or not guns are allowed on their premises. If you don't want people to carry on your property, all you have to do is post a sign in accordance with the law. The state shouldn't be making these decisions on behalf of the business owner.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 12:59 PM

the 161 innocent people killed by conceal/carry permit holders takes on the same perspective for me as it always did.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Sat, May 8, 2010, at 7:35 PM

Each year, more than 30,000 Americans die in gun suicides, homicides, and unintentional shootings.

This comes from the same web site that you got your numbers from. What percentage of 90,000 are 161. You say that 161 people have been killed over the past three years by permit holders. 30,000 people die each year from fire arms, owned illegally and legally. That is staggering due to the fact that the large majority is violent crime committed by people who do not pay attention to any law let alone fire arms laws.

-- Posted by docudrama on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 6:26 PM

Rocket Valentine you have every right to your opinion. From the TN Dept of safety website, TN alone has issued over 339,000 permits since 1996 & only a small percentage have lapsed or been revoked. So, if that 161 was all in TN, the percentage is still so low it is laughable. As Lazarus pointed out, the numbers, yours and mine, don't mean much but that's still odds I'm willing to live with. All you are doing is making our case stronger & we thank you for that. One more thing I need to correct; it takes 2 DUI's to lose a permit. I thought it was 1. But if you're caught with a gun & you've been drinking once you still lose it.

And Grit, due to the government's hysterical fear of racial profiling the terrorist watchlist is a joke. Shelbyville's phone book might have more actual terrorists. And it represents suspected, not convicted people. Our constitution forbids taking away anyone's rights without due process of law(criminal conviction), so until these people move from the "suspected" to the "did something" list they deserve the same rights as everyone else; assuming they are American citizens in the first place.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 8:03 PM

In our current state of liberal political correctness, it is perfectly okay at an airport to strip search somebody's grandmother, after pulling her from her wheelchair, or forbid a Congressional Medal of Honor winner (Joe Fosse) from wearing his medal on a passenger plane due to it having the "potential" to be used as a weapon. However should you question a young Middle Eastern male, you are accused of racial profiling. Political correctness did allow 19 terrorists to board planes and kill more than 3,000 Americans on 09/11/01 Now how damned absurd is that? It is increasingly obvious that the current administration's only homeland security policy is simply hoping that their bombs fail to work properly.

-- Posted by Tim Lokey on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 9:28 PM

And who was President and in charge of our homeland secrity on 09/11/01 again? ....

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 9:39 PM

"And who was President and in charge of our homeland secrity on 09/11/01 again?"

Wait a second there, I didn't think that we were allowed to hold SITTING Presidents accountable for things that happened during their first couple of years in office.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 9:53 PM

"Those who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety" Ben Franklin.

Who cares who the President was? Homeland security was formed after 9-11 anyway & Bush was wrong for doing so. We already have a military & the government should never be responsible for personal safety. That is each individual's job & the reason I want my right to carry fully restored per the second amendment. And that really has nothing to do with this debate.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 10:28 PM

Heck, Arizona is looking better and better. They're now an open-carry state and the conservative government is still holding a 60% approval rating. Hmmm...what are the approval ratings of Congress and the President.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 10:41 PM

Been thinkin' the same thing lately myself Thom. Mule deer, mountains, hmmm! But TN's getting better too. We'll get there.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 11:10 PM

We spent our vacation last year out there. GREAT people, beautiful scenery, and a government that thinks like I do. Plenty of places to hike, plenty of land to build on, lots of sun for solar panels. I could deal with that...except they do have an income tax there.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, May 10, 2010, at 11:36 PM

I guess when you look at the "big picture", 161 innocent deaths does seem like a small number...or as bjrbrts so eloquently put it, "miniscule" and "laughable".

I'm sure some people who aren't laughing are the families of the victims.

bjrbrts - It seems that you just see these people as collateral damage. It's just the price we must pay for you to have your right to walk around town with a gun on your side like Jesse James.

I look at "odds" too. And as a average unarmed citizen I stll feel my odds are just as good at getting shot by a carry permit holder, as getting saved by one. Just my opinion. You have some good points also and I respect them. I know that most carry permit holders good respectable people.

-- Posted by Rocket Valentine on Tue, May 11, 2010, at 8:59 AM

Rocket Valentine;

I said when I first responded to your number that even 161 was still unacceptable. I hold myself & all permit holders to a much higher standard. You can feel however you want; I feel more comfortable with people who do carry as they are normally more polite & always less confrontational. But those 161 don't compare to the thousands killed every year by non-permit holders that your website talks about. Or many more murders stopped with no shot fired. I do NOT accept them as collateral damage; I just know from following crime/murder rates since TN's permit law was enacted that the threat & possibility of facing an armed & determined victim scares criminals(most of whom are too lazy to work & too cowardly to face a worthy opponent) into finding less violent ways to make a living. So I believe that many more would be killed if no one but police had guns; by definition, criminals break laws; why would they care if they broke one or two more? All they understand is force & armed citizens provide much more potential for force than police alone. And even your reference supports the fact that permit holders do live to a higher standard.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Tue, May 11, 2010, at 5:34 PM

All these bits of stats and information are interesting but do not mean a thing when your standing by your garage and hear a bullet whiz past your head or hear one ricochet off a rock near you while your walk on your land, in our woods. Bars, restaurants, parks or what ever, if your going somewhere you feel is so unsafe you need to carry a gun, you need to really ask yourself if you need to be there. But to be in your own yard, on your own land and have to worry about hunters or gun owners (permit or not) firing your way is just not right.

There are a group of gun owners that ruin it for the honest respectable ones, they are the (pardon the expression) the big "i'm tuff" let me spit my tabaccee wanna be's that feel they have to wave that gun and prove themselves by being a big bad gun toting hunter. I am not lumping all hunters or gun owner into this group. I am sure you can all visualize the group I am "profiling" here.

I have absolutely no problem with people owning guns, and if permits gets the owners better trained all the better. I do not want guns outlawed, but I do want some protection for those who become victimized by the shooters who endanger them. During hunting season we are afraid to let the kids out to play, and we own enough acreage that we should not ever have to worry about stray bullets if the hunters are being responsible and doing what they should. Yes we posted the no hunting signs, yes we have contacted the police and the agency in charge of monitoring the hunters. Unless the police catch them red handed shooting the bullet that went by our head we have no recourse.

Just as we should have the right to own guns we should also have the right to be protected from them.IF we abuse the right then we should lose it and be held accountable for the careless actions taken.

I know there is no answer to the problem, hunters will always have more rights than the land owner that wants to be safe on there own land.

Along with the rights to own guns there needs to be more accountability for infringing on the rights of those around them when they use the guns. If the gun owner are so careless or uncaring as to infringe on the rights of a person in their own yard to be safe then they have no right owning and shooting a gun.

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Fri, May 14, 2010, at 2:58 PM

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Fri, May 14, 2010, at 2:58 PM

I understand where you are coming from about the stray bullets, but irresponsible hunters and carry permit holders are not the same thing. The vast majority of carry permit holders are not the "tabaccee spitting...big tuff gun toters" you talk about. From working in a gun shop and assisting in the carry permit process, I rarely ever seen anyone like that. The majority were everyday working men and women (alot of single mothers too btw)who wanted to have a permit so that they could protect themselves. The big tuff tabacee spitters are normally the ones who dont want a carry permit because they dont want the govt knowing they are carrying a gun.

You are 110% correct, if someone is careless with a gun, and shooting into someone elses property, then yes they shouldnt be allowed to own and shoot a gun. But, there is a ton of accountability for carelessness with a firearm....

-- Posted by greasemonkey on Sat, May 15, 2010, at 10:18 AM

I have mentioned the right of people to carry many times here but I feel just as strongly about the responsibility to do it properly; all rights come with responsibilities. Those slob hunters Wonderwhy talks about are not meeting that responsibility so they don't deserve the right. I also hunt & have in the past had similar problems on my own property & wound up having to deal with them myself because of the same reluctance from law enforcement. Fortunately, it never came to violence & my property now has a reputation for being aggressively protected from that type of "hunter" & I haven't had any problems in quite a while. It was funny how mad they got when I came noisily strolling along disturbing all the game & ruining their hunt; I did it without ever showing a weapon. I also make sure my gun is never seen in public; it is a last resort tool I'm proud to say I've never even come close to having to use. There are plenty of existing laws addressing Wonderwhy's problem but they are not enforced. That illustrates several points I've made here. The police are not legally bound to protect you unless they see something being done to you. Also, those who break existing laws won't care if more are passed; they'll ignore those too if it suits them. And, except for keeping invading forces off our shores & catching criminals, the government should have no duty to protect us; it would be physically impossible anyway. So I believe those of us who do obey laws deserve more freedom to protect ourselves. That will deter crime a lot, not from citizens acting like Wyatt Earp but just because the criminals know they stand a better chance of meeting an armed victim. Too many in this country have forgotten personal responsibility. Wonderwhy, I take nothing away from your problem; it is a bad one I have experienced too. I just feel there is a more effective way to deal with it than depending on laws that won't be obeyed or police that already have more to do than they can handle. And, it can be done without a citizen ever taking the law into their own hands.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 15, 2010, at 7:06 PM

There is one thing I DO NOT agree with you on, Wonderwhy. Hunters are taught in required safety classes that the rights of the landowner come first. The rights of the hunter should & will never come first. You do not deserve to live in fear during hunting season & it saddens me that you haven't gotten any more help than you have.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sat, May 15, 2010, at 7:13 PM

Well I do like the scatter the game idea, get rid of hunters and get fresh air at the same time. Watch for "stray" bullets. I do understand also that just because they have a permit does not insure they will have a brain that they use any more than a drivers license insures a safe driver.

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Sat, May 15, 2010, at 11:17 PM

I'm not trying to encourage you to do something dangerous. I'm just telling you what worked for me. Poachers are normally not hardened killers & are not willing to shoot a person. I counted on that fact but I was also armed & accepted the fact I could wind up in a bad situation. It helps if you can locate them before they locate you. Tenn Wildlife Resources Agency will help if you call them & Bedford County's game warden likes to deal with trespassers/poachers. Try him; he's a really good guy. I prefer to deal with it myself but won't hesitate to call him if I need to. Remember, we are only justified - legally and morally - in using deadly force to protect life & limb. I wish you luck; but be careful.

-- Posted by bjrbrts on Sun, May 16, 2010, at 10:35 PM

I know there is only so much we can do, and common sense must be used.

My mother in-law was cute she didn't take any guff from hunters, she would get right in their face. A tough little spit fire. I don't have her guts though lol.

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 9:15 AM


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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.