Slowly and with a hitch in his step, Sal Foti made his way to the handicapped shooting lane at Targetmaster Indoor Firearm Range & Gun Shop.
The lane is closest to the door, wide enough for a wheelchair or other equipment and marked with a handicapped sign, reports the LA Times “Foti, 57, a retired public relations executive, has suffered since childhood from rheumatoid arthritis, which stiffens his joints, making it difficult for him to walk or stand for long.
“To put up even the target is hard for me,” he said, “It’s nice to see that ranges are starting to understand and accommodate handicapped shooters. Given the aging population and the fact that we’ve got more of these military folks coming back disabled, I think there’s going to be more of a need for it.”
“The group Disabled Americans for Firearms Rights, formed before the December 2012 school shooting in Newtown, Conn., saw its membership quadruple to 19,000 after the event, energizing its lobbying on behalf of gun owners. Many disabled citizens have difficulty wielding traditional pistols and rifles, which has prompted some to become vociferous allies in the campaign to block new restrictions on assault-style weapons.
“They’re banning these weapons for arbitrary reasons — because it has a certain grip or stock — when in reality those are the features that someone with a disability like me needs to operate a firearm,” said Scott Ennis, a hemophiliac who started the Connecticut-based disabled firearm-owners group and serves as its president. Like Foti, Ennis suffered joint damage that makes it difficult for him to grip and shoot. Continue reading “Some disabled oppose gun restrictions”
The share of American households with guns has declined over the past four decades, a national survey shows, with some of the most surprising drops in the South and the Western mountain states, where guns are deeply embedded in the culture, reports the New York Times
“The gun ownership rate has fallen across a broad cross section of households since the early 1970s, according to data from the General Social Survey, a public opinion survey conducted every two years that asks a sample of American adults if they have guns at home, among other questions. Continue reading “Gun ownership lowest in 40 years”
Worries are beginning to accumulate on the popular applications of what used to be called “rapid prototyping.” A growing number of devices that create objects from design programs are coming onto the market, potentially allowing just about anyone to make anything at home or at a nearby copy shop. NPR reports about the new concerns over the potential of 3-D printers to make guns or weapon parts.
“You may have heard about 3-D printing, a technological phenomenon that uses a robotic arm to build objects one layer at a time. As people get imaginative and create items in a one-stop-shop fashion, one more creation has been added to the printing line: gun parts.
On the West Side of Manhattan, behind large glass windows, a dozen 3-D printers build plastic toys and jewelry. Hilary Brosnihan, a manager at 3DEA, an events company that sponsored a print pop-up store, says things are moving rapidly. ‘This [3-D printing] is coming down the line; it’s coming down the line very quickly’ Brosnihan says. She also works as a toy manufacturer. The technology has boosted her business, but the idea of printing a gun horrifies her. She says most of her colleagues feel the same way.
“‘They are more of an open-source community that’s about developing things that are useful. And in our terms, weapons aren’t really useful,’ Brosnihan says. ‘Creating a way to adjust your sink faucet so you don’t have issues with it — that’s useful.’ But a lot of Americans do think guns are useful.”
Full story at: http://www.npr.org/blogs/alltechconsidered/2013/02/06/171154845/using-3-d-printers-to-make-gun-parts-raises-alarms
This may not shock anyone, but “married” male southerners own guns at higher rates than anyone else.
The odds of a man owning a gun are five times greater than the odds of a woman owning a gun, reports the Gallup organization today, once the influence of other factors related to gun ownership is taken into account.
“Being from the South and being married are the next-most influential predictors; each is associated with 1.7 times greater odds of owning a gun than among those who are not married and among those who do not live in the South.”Given that no “southern” states have endorsed marriage equality, “marriage” means heterosexual.
“Being Hispanic and being from the East are associated with lower gun ownership, but on a relative basis, these are the next strongest predictors of gun ownership, followed by race, ideology, and age. Continue reading “Straight, married southerners most likely to own guns”
Historical memory is a funny thing. It’s always selective.
Take the current raving of the gun crowd for the sacred text of the Second Amendment, adopted in 1791. It turns out that the idea came about to help southern slaveholders keep their human “property” from getting out of line. As Thom Hartman writes today in TroughOut,
“The real reason the Second Amendment was ratified, and why it says ‘State’ instead of “Country” (the Framers knew the difference – see the 10th Amendment), was to preserve the slave patrol militias in the southern states, which was necessary to get Virginia’s vote. Founders Patrick Henry, George Mason, and James Madison were totally clear on that . . . and we all should be too. Continue reading “Second Amendment and “slave patrols””
This recent statistic of 345 gun deaths is about the average for a two week period in “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” The number comes courtesy of Slate.com, which has just started an online project to track gun killings. As Slate announced today:
“Since the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., on Dec. 14, we at Slate have been wondering how many people are dying from guns in America every day.
“That information is surprisingly hard to come by. The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence
, for example, has a tally atop its website of “people shot in America.” That number, though, is an estimate, based on the number of gun injuries and deaths recorded by the CDC in 2008 and 2009, the most recent years for which statistics are available. It seems shocking that when guns are in the headlines every day, there’s no one attempting to create a real-time chronicle of the deaths attributable to guns in the United States. Continue reading “U.S. gun deaths since Sandy Hook: 345”
Opponents of stricter regulation on gun ownership have accused their adversaries of politicizing a tragedy.
Poll analyst Nate Silver looks at the statistical aspects of gun discourse much with the same care and scrutiny he gave the recent presidential race. On his FiveThirtyEight site he states:
“Advocates of more sweeping gun control measures have argued that the Connecticut shootings are a
demonstration that laxer gun laws can have dire consequences. Let me sidestep the debate to pose a different question: How often are Americans talking about public policy toward guns? And what language are they using to frame their arguments? Continue reading “Nate Silver points to shifting gun discourse”