Fresh from covering the Great GOP Powder Puff Incident, Birmingham News ace night-shift crime reporter Jeremy Gray reports breathlessly: "Alabama 5th in U.S. for supplying crime guns."
A report released Monday says Alabama is the United States' fifth largest supplier of guns used in crimes in other states. In 2009, 1,561 guns sold here were used in crimes in other states, according to the report from Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a coalition formed in 2006 by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.
What? We don't get credit for doing our part to boost the sagging economy? Seriously though, to quote the Bard, "Who hath measured the ground?" As we well know from previous ATF statistics mongering, "crime guns" are not the same as "trace guns."
Three Alabama mayors -- Mobile Mayor Samuel Jones, Prichard Mayor Ron Davis and Tuskegee Mayor Omar Neal -- are among the coalition's 500 members, according to the group's website. The group works to reduce the threat of illegal guns, the site states.
Personally, I doubt that any of these Democrat mayors are making further restrictions on firearms a campaign platform this year.
Weak state gun control laws have turned Alabama into "a supermarket for guns," said the group's chief policy advisor, John Feinblatt.
"Feinblatt" translated from the German means "delicate leaf."
"John Feinblatt is the Criminal Justice Coordinator for the Mayor. Prior to his appointment, he most recently founded and directed the Center for Court Innovation. He has also served as Director of the Midtown Court, Deputy Executive Director of Victims Services (now Safe Horizon), and a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society. Feinblatt earned a BA at Wesleyan University and a JD from the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University." -- www.nyc.gov
The state needs to implement several laws to prevent guns sold legally here from being used illegally somewhere else, the report states.
Just to make it explicit:
Among the measures the group said are needed here are: Laws making it a crime to buy a gun for someone who can't buy one legally,
Of course we already have a federal law to that effect.
requiring background checks for handgun sales at gun shows,
The old canard of the "gun show loophole" rears its ugly head once more. These people won't be satisfied until they get federal control over all private firearms transactions. Of course, they could be dead before they do.
requiring purchase permits for all handguns, requiring people to report lost or stolen guns to police, allowing cities to enact gun control ordinances, and allowing police to inspect gun dealerships.
What this is about is empowering anti-firearm rights mayors to wage their own wars of citizen disarmament without reference to vagaries of state or federal enforcement. The lords of the manor do not wish their peasants to have access to armor-punching crossbows while they steal the crops and diddle the peasant women.
James Moses, president of the Alabama State Rifle and Pistol Association, argued that such laws would not keep people from buying guns here and shipping them elsewhere. "I don't think those measures have worked anywhere else," Moses said. "It's just more talk."
One quote of counter opinion in the entire story. This is what passes for "fair and balanced" in the Birmingham News these days. It could have been a more eloquent or fact-based refutation than "Just more talk." Yet, given the political realities of this state, that's probably true. Still we should keep firmly in mind what these walking appetites for other people's property, liberty and lives have in mind.
But Feinblatt said Alabama has gained a reputation as a state with weak gun laws and more needs to be done here.
If Mr. Delicate Leaf thinks so, I invite him to come down here and try it. Please.
The report stated that Alabama has a gun export rate of 33.2 guns per 100,000 inhabitants, more than double the national average of 14.1 guns exported per 100,000 inhabitants. "For years, the thinking was what makes America safer is giving people more access to guns," Feinblatt said. "This report shows what makes people safer is common sense gun laws."
Common sense. Yes. How about this common sense proposal: If you try to take our firearms we will kill you. Does that work for you Feinblatt? 'Cause it sure as hell works for us.
The report commended Alabama for having laws making it a crime to use false information to buy a gun, selling guns without background checks, giving police discretion in issuing concealed weapon permits, and prohibiting violent misdemeanor criminals from owning guns.
Yes, well, I'd like to thank Mr. Delicate Leaf for reminding us of how anti-gun local authorities can deny CCW permits to the law-abiding out of personal animus. I'm sure that after this election, when both the Alabama House and Senate change party control, that we're going to be addressing that and other issues. I like Vermont carry, myself. And an Alabama Firearms Freedom Act will be almost a certainty.
Thanks, Feinblatt, for raising this issue just in time for the election. We needed the reminder.
"Do you love it?
Do you hate it?
There it is,
the way you made it."
-- Frank Zappa, 1965.
The alleged leader of a merry band of Three Percenters.
Later: David Codrea's take on this.