Libertarian Commentary on the News, #14-43A: Guns today

By Nathan Barton

Good morning!  Here are a few stories from the weekend or a bit older, thanks to various folks.  Mostly doing with guns in some way.

Thanks to Margaret for this and the next several stories: Holly Fisher of Charleston, West Virginia is the christian wife of an Army veteran and is a mother of three.  She recently irritated some tranzis by posting a photo of herself posing in front of a Hobby Lobby store holding a Chick-fil-A drinking cup while wearing a pro-life T-shirt. Shortly after receiving at least one death threat, she again posted a photo of herself, this time in front of an American flag while holding a Bible and an AK-47.  She’s been condemned and vilified, compared to Islamist jihadis with similar pictures.  But what has she really done?  She’s shown herself willing to stand up for liberty, for what she believes, just like many others are doing.  Was the AK-47 was a bit over the top?  Would a handgun have done just as well?

Apparently liberals are attacking her but this guy who USED to be one of their own “community organizers” is seen in a similar photo – but a Keffiyeh (scarf commonly worn by jihadis and the mujahadin) and a FAKE AK-47 – and no Bible.

Pennsylvania, while better than New York, New Jersey, or Ohio, regarding the right to keep and bear arms, is NOT exactly high on the list of states willing to abide by constitutional law, as witness the martial law imposed to track down the (still missing) cop-shooter. But two legislators, Pennsylvania Democrat Rep. Marty Flynn and fellow Rep. Ryan Bizzarro were on their way to the state Capitol in Harrisburg when they were confronted by four teenagers fresh from other robberies.  The teens pulled guns, one put a firearm to Bizzarro’s head and demanded the men’s wallets.  Instead, Rep. Flynn, a former prison guard and expert martial artist, whipped out his handgun and exchanged fire in self-defense.  The robbers fled.  Flynn called police, told them what happened and relinquished his firearm to them for the investigation.  Harrisburg’s police chief praised Flynn for acting correctly.  Obviously, the Harrisburg cops did NOT behave properly in taking Flynn’s gun away from him.  While I assume that given his background, he has another one, this sort of confiscation is just plain wrong.

In West Virginia, however, things apparently were much worse.  Chris Harris of  Wheeling (sandwiched between Ohio and Pennsylvania) was on his way home from teaching Sunday School when he and his girlfriend were suddenly surrounded by nine people who threatened to rob them and rape her.  One claimed to be armed.  Fortunately, Harris and his girlfriend were armed but didn’t want to shoot their attackers, opting instead to try to defuse the situation quickly.  So Harris grabbed his girlfriend’s handgun (stupid act #1) and told them the weapon was real.   Apparently the nine didn’t believe him, so he fired a warning shot into the air (stupid act #2), hoping they would disperse. His girlfriend was on the phone with 911 when the shot was fired, so police knew that an attempt was made to warn the attackers away.  (Stupid act #3: trusting the cops.) The couple got to his home, but things went downhill from there.  Harris was arrested, charged with wanton endangerment, is prohibited from being around one of the attackers and faces up to a year in jail for his act.  He did do this in self-defense.  The nine attackers walked free.  Yes, what he did was stupid, but it certainly does not deserve this kind of treatment.  But we are talking the East here, as in the next story.

In Indiana, David McLaughlin woke early one morning to loud noises coming from his attached garage.  He found David Bailey robbing him.  Bailey bolted down an alley behind the house. McLaughlin told him to freeze and then took aim and shot at him three times as Bailey ran. (Stupid, and NOT self-defense!) Bailey saw a doctor for his wound and then lied to police about how he got the wound and about the robbery.  Despite inconsistencies in Bailey’s story and his illegal presence on McLaughlin’s property, a jury convicted McLaughlin, who faces a jail sentence of 18 months or more.  While part of this is the corrupt jury system, McLaughlin was NOT acting in self-defense and should never have fired a shot.  The danger to him and the threat to his property was ended.

Folks, we have to keep in mind that shooting at a fleeing felon is NOT self-defense and frankly serves little or no real purpose except to express anger and take revenge (which is not our right).  And firing shots into the air has killed more than one innocent… a very bad practice. Bullets have no brains: we supposedly do: using firearms as these two men did is certainly as negligent as failing to secure that load of scrap metal in the back of the truck, or not keeping dogs leased, or distracted driving.  At least in these cases, no one (except a felon) was injured or killed.  It doesn’t mean that the authorities were right in their punishment of either one as being appropriate.

One more gun-related story: U. S. Navy veteran David Radich and his wife are suing the Commonwealth of Northern Marianas Islands in an attempt to overturn the total ban of handguns on the island so that they can better defend themselves.  She was severely injured during a recent home invasion, and they have the strange argument that, since the Marianas are part of the US, their second amendment rights are being infringed, and they should be provided the opportunity to own weapons for self-defense.  That is, of course, too radical: they are no doubt either Islamists or Ebola skeptics who want to overthrow the Commonwealth.

On to a few other things:

Imposing a single subject rule on Federal legislation? Americans have become used to the laws that come out of Congress — bills are massive and can reach thousands of pages, making reading them all but impossible. Proposals to require that each bill address a “single subject” have been tried before.  I don’t think it will go any farther this time: it would take too much power from Congress.

How “Health Care Sharing Ministries” work: As of today, 300,000 Americans across the 50 states are enrolled in Health Care Sharing Ministries, which share costs among those of similar religious faiths. In many ways, this is a throwback to older times, when members of churches helped care for each other; when benevolence meant something.  It does seem to be worth considering as an alternative to ObummerCare, especially for younger families.

Two teachers allege in a suit filed in district court that the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) is blocking them from exercising their right to donate union dues money to charity. Pennsylvania allows religious objectors to cut ties with unions as long as they donate an equivalent agency fee payment to charity. That money is given to the union, which is then supposed to send it to the charity of the teacher’s choosing.  The union is refusing to give the money to the charities selected by the teachers.  Ironically, given the political contributions made by PSEA and other NEA affiliates, the excuse for one is that teaching the constitution is “too political.” More and more unions are trying desperately to maintain control over their members: a control that resembles serfdom.

About tpolnathan

Follower of Christ Jesus (christian), Pahasapan, Westerner, Lover of Liberty, Free-Market Anarchist, Engineer, Army Officer, Husband, Father, Historian, Writer.
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