Public Opinion Is Running Against You

By Dave Workman

Whether you like it or not, public opinion is running against you and your right to keep and bear arms, and some of it is coming from within the ranks.

A recent Quinnipiac University survey revealed the bad news for the tens of millions of American gun owners. For starters, you apparently think you’re untrustworthy, or at least you think your gun-owning friends are, because the poll said voters in “gun households support universal background checks 93-6 percent.”

Voters also think stricter gun laws are a good idea by a 60-36 percent split, Quinnipiac said. Seventy-nine percent like the idea of a mandatory waiting period for all gun purchases, while 19 percent disagree. And 64 percent support a ban on the sale of so-called “assault weapons,” while 32 percent don’t.

And here’s an interesting finding: American voters responding to the poll believe “it’s possible to make new gun laws without interfering with gun rights.” This includes 51 percent of Republicans, and 57 percent of voters in “gun households.”

It would be interesting to learn just how many American Handgunner readers have ever participated in such a survey. Might also be interesting to learn how many of you voted in the last election, or plan to vote in the next one.

Anyone who thinks such surveys don’t matter better guess again because even though constitutional rights should not be subject to popular opinion — the national news media would be in trouble if they were — public sentiment does matter. So does voting, especially for local judges.

The Quinnipiac poll was taken only days after the Las Vegas massacre. Gun prohibition groups jumped on that, even though there is no evidence that any of the proposed gun law “reforms” would have prevented the incident, unless we’re talking about an outright ban on semiautomatic modern sporting rifles; you know, turn ‘em in or go to jail.

Background checks? The Las Vegas shooter passed several of them. Waiting periods? The guy had been acquiring guns for months, maybe years. But who cares? Right now, gun control makes headlines and the more pressure that anti-gunners can create on lawmakers, the stronger the possibility that one more gun control law could get passed.

Something Else For Your Displeasure

The Nation ran a story several days ago that put the icing on the cake for legally armed citizens.

Anti-gunners are now starting to zero in on gun owners with “anger management problems.” Here’s a little excerpt:

“In the United States, far more people who are prone to getting into a fight are armed. According to a 2015 study published in the journal Behavioral Sciences and the Law, around 9 percent of the adult population in the United States have both a history of impulse- and anger-control problems and easy access to a gun; around 1.5 percent of adults in the United States are angry, impulsive, and carry a gun with them. And Duke University professor of psychiatry Jeffrey Swanson, the lead investigator of the study, says that number ‘might even be higher now, because the data were collected several years ago, and since that time there’s been a real expansion of concealed carry.’”

Democrat AGs Oppose CCW Reciprocity

Remember, we said elections matter, and this was nicely underscored by the attorneys general in 16 states and the District of Columbia recently when they — all Democrats — signed a letter to Congress opposing the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017.

Otherwise known as H.R. 38 (House version) and S. 446 (Senate version), this legislation would require all states to recognize the concealed carry permits/licenses issued by all other states.

If you live in one of these states, your top legal beagle doesn’t care about your right to self-defense across state lines: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia.

At the recent Gun Rights Policy Conference held in Dallas, Texas, author and researcher John Lott, founder of the Crime Prevention Research Center, estimated that some 16.5 million people are now currently licensed to carry concealed sidearms in the United States. More than a million of them live in Pennsylvania, and Washington State is home to about 590,000 more.

The letter does contain an interesting allegation.

According to the 17 Democrat AGs, “The result of the proposed legislation would be a proliferation of potentially dangerous or irresponsible non-residents with concealed weapons in the States, cities, and towns across America that have made local judgments that certain regulations on the carrying of such weapons are necessary to protect public safety. Furthermore, the House bill would override some state laws that prohibit carrying concealed weapons in bars, schools, shopping malls, movie theatres, subways, or parks. States would not be able to enforce those restrictions; nor would local law enforcement officers reacting to specific risks to the public in such locations, which have tragically been the site of mass shootings in recent years.” (Emphasis added).

But a quick glance at the actual House version reveals this language: “(b) This section shall not be construed to supersede or limit the laws of any State that— “(1) permit private persons or entities to prohibit or restrict the possession of concealed firearms on their property; or
“(2) prohibit or restrict the possession of firearms on any State or local government property, installation, building, base, or park.”

Sandy Hook Lawsuit Arguments Coming

An NBC affiliate in Connecticut has reported that the Connecticut State Supreme Court is slated to begin hearing arguments in the appeal of a dismissal of the wrongful death lawsuit filed against the manufacturer of the gun used in the Sandy Hook attack in December 2012.

The lawsuit was dismissed last year by a state Superior Court judge. In the legal crosshairs is Remington Arms. Killer Adam Lanza used an AR-type rifle in the attack to kill 20 children and six adults. Lanza killed himself as police began arriving at the school.

The rifle was legally sold to Lanza’s mother. He killed her and took the gun from her safe prior to driving to the elementary school.

That hearing will begin on Nov. 14.

Get A New Grip For The Mark IV

Let’s talk handgun grips for a moment, because Pachmayr recently introduced G10 Tactical replacement panels for Ruger Mark IV pistols, and I got hold of a set and put them to the great outdoors test.

Passed with flying colors!

For openers, they’re very attractive, and they fit perfectly. The panels supplied by Pachmayr featured a fine-checkered surface that really provided a solid grip in the snowy Northwest weather I encountered in mid-October.

G10 is tough stuff. It doesn’t crack or shatter, thanks to its laminated construction. It consists of layers of woven fiberglass, and when it is shaped into a grip panel, a handsome pattern emerges that enhances the optical effect.

The fact that they’re impervious to moisture is a big plus, too. Where I live, moisture and crummy weather conditions are the rule rather than the exception. I anticipate these grip panels will get a real workout over the next couple of months as I tramp around the outdoors looking for a rabbit to pop.

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