Category Archives: Constitution

Pennsylvania school wants to arm students with rocks to protect them against active shooters

good luck

From Fox News: Schools nationwide are debating President Trump’s call to arm teachers and security guards with guns – while one Pennsylvania school is getting attention for its last line of defense.

Blue Mountain School District Superintendent David Helsel made headlines recently after testifying to lawmakers at the state capitol that his students could be armed with rocks in case of an active shooter lockdown.

“Every classroom has been equipped with a five-gallon bucket of river stone,” Helsel told lawmakers. “If an armed intruder attempts to gain entrance into any of our classrooms, they will face a classroom full students armed with rocks and they will be stoned.”

The superintendent told Fox News on Friday he was surprised by the added media attention for something he calls a “last resort.” He said he has received positive support from parents in the community.

Helsel said the school district has a series of safety measures already installed, including cameras and new security locks on classroom doors, as well as armed security and training for staff and students in a program called ALICE, which stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate.

But if an unarmed teacher decides to lockdown a classroom, instead of being passive as they had been trained to do in the past, Helsel said his kids will be empowered to defend themselves.

“Obviously a rock against a gun isn’t a fair fight, but it’s better than nothing,” he said, adding, “I’m not sure why some people feel that it’s more appropriate to be a stationary target under a desk in a classroom rather than be empowered to defend yourself and provide a response to deter the entry of an armed intruder into their classroom.”

Helsel said another district had recommended using golf balls, but he didn’t like that idea because they would bounce around whereas the rocks are shaped in a way to hit and fall after being thrown.

The plan has received mixed reactions from the community.

A senior at Blue Mountain High School supports the idea. “It matters because it will help protect the schools, anything helps, rocks are better than books and pencils,” he told WNEP.

“At this point, we have to get creative,” one parent said. “We have to protect our kids first and foremost. Throwing rocks? It’s an option.”

But not everyone thinks it’s a good idea. “It’s absurd,” another parent said. “Arm the teachers.”

Helsel said, while the teachers are not armed, the district is looking for volunteers at the school on maintenance staff to be properly trained and armed, adding that he hopes they never have to use any of the safety measures.



Gun owner says he hopes owning AR rifles becomes toxic like wearing fur or owning ivory

steve hemmert turn in ar 15

Steve posing for a photo op to turn in his gun. You do your thing, I’ll keep mine, TYVM…

Since the FBI can’t keep up with all those “unhinged” people, maybe some folks just want the right to defend themselves as they choose? Just a thought.

Also: How insulting is it that you label responsible firearm owners as people with “dangerous” weapons? I’m not as dangerous as the “Lion of the Senate.”

From ABC News: Steve Hemmert lives a mile away from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.  He said Feb. 14 — the day when a former student gunned down 17 people at the school — was “surreal.”

Hemmert, who was a member of the Army Reserves, is familiar with guns. He said he used to enjoy going to the shooting range, sometimes with his teenage daughter, firing two of his AR-style rifles.

But now, after the Parkland shooting, the fun is gone.

And soon, too, will his guns: Hemmert sold the guns back to the Miami Police Department this weekend as part of its gun buyback program.

“It was like a transformation between thinking of guns as kind of a fun hobby, to my God, these exact types of rifles just killed kids in my community,” he told ABC News.

He continued, “I can’t imagine ever having any fun shooting those guns. I was almost embarrassed to own them because how insulting to the victims that I would even want to keep those things in my house.

Hemmert, who left the Reserves in 2005 and now works as a lawyer, published a picture of himself turning over two AR-style rifles to a Miami police officer on Saturday. He later shared an emotional post on his Facebook page.

“My daughter recently told me that her plan is to only wear sneakers to school from now on, in case she needs to run. And I realize that, unlike some of my neighbors, I am lucky to still HAVE a 14-year-old daughter,” he wrote.

Hemmert, 45, told ABC News that the shooting impacted his entire family, including his daughter, who attends a different high school.

“In the week after that [shooting], she said she went through each classroom and figured out where the best hiding spot was in each classroom,” he said. “It’s disgusting that our kids should even think about that stuff.”

Hemmert said he was always incredibly careful with his guns, breaking them down and storing them under lock and key. He realized there was no way he could guarantee that another person would take the same precautions.

That’s why he decided to participate in the Miami Police Department’s gun buyback program. Each gun the department received would be examined and possibly destroyed if found to be stolen or involved in a crime, officer Michael Vega told ABC News.

The Miami Police Department shared a picture on Facebook of the 128 firearms it received during the buyback.

Hemmert, who got a $250 Visa gift card for each of his guns, said he hopes that “owning ARs becomes toxic, almost like wearing fur or owning ivory. It just becomes socially unacceptable to own AR rifles.”

His emotional Facebook post has received more than 100,000 comments. While most have been overwhelmingly positive, he guessed 10 to 15 percent were “really ugly.”

“There are a lot of people that have a lot of guns that are really unhinged out there,” he said, referring to some of the people who have made threats against him and his family.

Hemmert said that one of the worst messages he received was a text by someone who threatened to rape Hemmert’s teenage daughter. “There are so many people saying so many crazy and scary things on the internet,” he said, adding, “I don’t know how the FBI could even keep up with all those people.”

Survivors from other school shootings have also reached out to him. Hemmert called their messages “humbling.”

“I think people want to believe that there’s a reasonable middle ground in the gun control debate,” Hemmert said.

He added, “Listen, these may be legal to own and they’re fun to own but they’re just too dangerous for the general public to have.”

h/t Twitchy


#MarchForOurLives: Remember Kate Steinle and those responsible for her death


Kate Steinle: Murdered by an illegal alien in sanctuary San Francisco

Remember this:

The government FAILED Kate, just like every single government agency failed Parkland students.

The government has FAILED those who live in strict gun-controlled Baltimore:

The government has FAILED those who live in strict gun-controlled Chiraq:

#MarchForOurLives: Why have you “cover stars” been silent in raising the voice for the victims of gun violence in Baltimore and Chiraq?

Why have you been silent in the death of Kate Steinle? Kate was an AMERICAN CITIZEN killed by an illegal alien enabled by the government’s actions.

Blame the NRA all you want. Doesn’t change the facts that 1) criminals don’t follow the laws, 2) government agencies may fail to protect citizens, 3) when seconds count the police are minutes away (and even if they are on site they still may cower) 4) police do not have a Constitutional duty to protect you and 5) because of reason number 3 we need the Second Amendment for self defense.

Remember Kate Steinle today.


Baltimore suffers steep population decline according to new Census data

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh

Heckuva job mayor!

Gee, I wonder why…

From Baltimore Sun: Baltimore saw another year of steep population losses with nearly 5,300 people leaving the city, according to new estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The official estimate of Baltimore’s population now stands at 611,648, down more than 9,000 since the last full Census in 2010.

The Census Bureau estimates that Baltimore’s population had started growing again this decade following years of declines, but the growth stalled in 2015 and appears to have been more than entirely wiped out.

The Census Bureau estimates population on an annual cycle that runs between July 1 and June 30. The most recent estimated decline in Baltimore is offset somewhat by the bureau revising up slightly its estimate of the city’s population in 2016.

The 2015-2016 decline was especially sharp and came after a year in which the city was shaken by rioting and a spike in crime. Mayor Catherine Pugh largely shrugged those figures off at the time, but the new numbers indicate it was not a single-year blip.

Pugh could not immediately be reached for comment.

Annie Milli, the director of Live Baltimore, an agency that works to get people to come to the city, said she’s not overly concerned by the figures. She said other numbers suggest the housing market in the city is still healthy, with home sales up, new apartments coming online and the number of vacant homes stable.

“It’s an unexpected result from our perspective,” she said.

Milli said the numbers don’t necessarily suggest that entire families are picking up and moving out of Baltimore but could show that a few members of families might be leaving while others remain.

Milli said she’s optimistic for the future because other data indicates young people are moving into the city. “Those are people who have the opportunity to fall in love with city life and be converted into city dwellers,” she said.

Baltimore’s decline last year represents the second biggest decrease of any county-level jurisdiction in the nation. Only Cook County, home to Chicago, saw more people leave — and with an estimated 5,231,356 residents, it is much more populous than Baltimore.

Read the rest of the story here.

See also:


Oregon gun initiative would force surrender of “assault weapons” or register them with the state police

bayonet2Wait until you see the full list of what they define as an “assault weapon.”

From KATU: A recently filed Oregon initiative would make manufacturing, importing, possessing, purchasing or selling an assault weapon or large capacity magazine a crime – with only a few exceptions.

If passed, Oregon Initiative 42 would only allow owners to keep their assault weapons and large capacity magazines if they register them with Oregon State Police.

If the initiative goes into effect, anyone who owns an assault weapon or large capacity magazine will be required to remove them from the state, sell the items, surrender the items to a law enforcement agency for destruction, render the assault weapon permanently inoperable or, if eligible, register the assault weapon or large capacity magazine with Oregon State Police within 120 days.

Anyone who moves into Oregon with an assault weapon would have 120 days to surrender it to law enforcement, transfer it to a licensed firearm dealer, render it permanently inoperable or register it.

Unlawful possession or transfer of an assault weapon or large capacity magazine would be a Class B felony.

In order to register an assault weapon under the act, the owner would need to submit a form to the Oregon State Police with the owner’s name and address and identification number of the assault weapon. The owner must also allow police to conduct a criminal background check to confirm the person is not a prohibited possessor.

Anyone hoping to register an assault weapon or large capacity magazine must prove to police that the items are securely stored and that they are only kept on property owned by the registered owner or on someone else’s property with express permission.

The initiative includes exceptions for government officers, members of the armed forces or peace officers. It would also allow firearm manufacturers to the build assault weapons to sell to the armed forces or law enforcement agencies in Oregon.

Sales and transfers of the weapons or large capacity magazines would only be allowed between licensed firearms dealers and branches of the armed forces or law enforcement agencies in Oregon.

The initiative defines an assault weapon as:

A semiautomatic rifle that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and has at least one of the following:

  • Any grip of the weapon, including a pistol grip, a thumbhole stock or any other stock
  • Any feature capable of functioning as a protruding grip that can be held by the non-trigger hand
  • A folding or telescoping stock
  • A shroud attached to the barrel, or that partially or completely encircles the barrel
  • A forward pistol grip
  • A flash suppressor, muzzle brake, muzzle compensator, or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor, muzzle brake, or muzzle compensator
  • A bayonet mount or a grenade launcher or flare launcher
  • A semiautomatic pistol, or any semiautomatic, centerfire or rimfire rifle with a fixed magazine, that has the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
  • A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that has an overall length of less than 30 inches
  • A semiautomatic pistol that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and has at least one of the following:
  • Any feature capable of functioning as a protruding grip that can be held by the non-trigger hand
  • A folding, telescoping or thumbhole stock
  • A shroud attached to the barrel, or that partially or completely encircles the barrel
  • The capacity to accept a detachable magazine at any location outside of the pistol grip
  • A threaded barrel capable of accepting a flash suppressor or forward pistol grip

Semiautomatic shotgun that has both of the following:

  • Any grip of the weapon, including a pistol grip, a thumbhole stock or any other stock
  • A folding telescoping stock

Semiautomatic shotgun that has at least one of the following:

  • A fixed magazine capacity in excess of 10 rounds or an ability to accept a detachable magazine
  • Shotgun with a revolving cylinder and conversion kit, part or combination of parts from which an assault weapon can be assembled if those parts are in the possession or under control of the same person.

A large capacity magazine is defined as any ammunition feeding device with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds or any conversion kit or combination or parts from which such a device can be assembled,


Washington state representative: “Facts will never drive anybody to make a decision”

pramila jayapal

Dan Rather would approve this message.

Pramila Jayapal is a progressive US representative from Washington’s 7th congressional district. She was born in India and is a “civil rights activist,” a big fan of the $15 minimum wage and supports free community college.

According to Seattle Capital Hill Seattle Blog, the congresswoman was at a town hall at a local high school to discuss “gun-access policy reform.”

From their blog:

“Our prime responsibility is to take care of each other. It’s not to money or greed so let’s make sure we incorporate love and generosity through non-violence,” Jayapal told the young march leaders Saturday.

In a closed-door session before the meeting, Jayapal discussed communication in activism with the student leaders. “Facts will never drive anybody to make a decision, but you need to have them. Never lead with the facts. They’ll believe your heart but not the facts,” said Jayapal.”

h/t MyNorthwest


Seattle mayor seeks law that requires owners to lock up guns

jenny durkan

The article below has been updated since I scheduled my post. It’s now touted as “safe-storage” legislation.

From Seattle Times: Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and Councilmember M. Lorena González plan to propose legislation to require gun owners to lock up firearms left in their homes and vehicles, Durkan and González said Wednesday.

The legislation also could increase penalties for people who fail to report lost and stolen guns, they said, describing the move as a response to a nationwide gun-violence crisis and to shootings in Seattle. Many shootings happen with guns that were available because they weren’t properly secured, the officials said.

The legislation has yet to be written. Details are to be worked out over the coming months.

State law prohibits Washington cities from regulating guns, and Durkan said she expects the legislation would be challenged in court. The mayor said she’s confident the city would prevail because the legislation wouldn’t stop anyone from buying, carrying or transporting a gun.

“This is not an anti-gun measure. This is a gun-safety measure,” Durkan said.

Durkan and González made the announcement alongside City Attorney Pete Holmes at Harborview Medical Center, where the city has been helping to fund a gun-violence research program.

The program provides some gunshot survivors with services ranging from substance-abuse and mental-health treatment to employment assistance. Revenue from Seattle’s tax on the sale of guns and ammunition, adopted in 2015, is supposed to support the research program.

Durkan took part in a town-hall meeting at Chief Sealth High School earlier this month to talk about curbing gun violence.

Read the rest of the story here.