Federal Property -Research

The recent kerfuffle; really should say the latest outbreak of the long running problem, had me doing a little research into the legal basis for federal ownership of property.

Found this informative report (PDF Alert)

Federal Land Ownership: Constitutional Authority and the History of Acquisition, Disposal and Retention.

Put together by the Congressional Research Service; a group I never knew about until I found the report. I’m not through reading it yet but lots of great information and some really surprising numbers.

“The federal government has retained about a third of the 1.8 billion acres it acquired in North America. These lands are heavily concentrated in 12 western states (including Alaska but not Hawaii), where, in total, the federal government owns more than half of the land (ranging from 30% in Montana to 84% in Nevada). “

Emphasis Mine.

Take a look at the report if you are interested in the constitutional and legal issues. I’ll try to post more later (maybe today, maybe later this week).

Thanks for sticking around folks.

Texas CHL Law Update

I might have mentioned this in passing but I didn’t cover in any detail. On 1 Sep 2013, a few firearm related bills were enacted into law.

One of those was Senate Bill 299 which changed section 46.035 as shown below

AN ACT

relating to the intentional display of a handgun by a person licensed to carry a concealed handgun.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:

SECTION 1. Subsections (a) and (h), Section 46.035, Penal Code, are amended to read as follows:

(a) A license holder commits an offense if the license holder carries a handgun on or about the license holder’s person under the authority of Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, and intentionally displays fails to conceal the handgun in plain view of another person in a public place.

(h) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a) that  the actor, at the time of the commission of the offense, displayed the handgun under circumstances in which the actor would have been justified in the use of force or deadly force under Chapter 9.

SECTION 2. The change in law made by this Act applies only to an offense committed on or after the effective date of this Act. An offense committed before the effective date of this Act is governed by the law in effect on the date the offense was committed, and the former law is continued in effect for that purpose. For purposes of this section, an offense was committed before the effective date of this Act if any element of the offense occurred before that date. 

SECTION 3. This Act takes effect September 1, 2013.

How big of a change is this? Really really big folks.

Remember in Section 411.171 there is this definition:

(3) “Concealed handgun” means a handgun, the presence of which is not openly discernible to the ordinary observation of a reasonable person.

This removes considerable worry about a shirt riding up or the wind blowing a cover garment up and exposing the firearm.Combine that with the protection of displaying in situations where the use of force or deadly force would be appropriate and the really helps the gun owner.
Not quite Open Carry but on the way. Even more importantly was the fact this bill wasn’t a stretch, it wasn’t an oddity in an otherwise hostile legislative session; it was 1 of 14 bills (Link edited — Happy Cormac???????)  that generally improved the rights of the people.

Please join the discussion.

 Aaron Spuler looked at the bills back in June 2013  - good recap

Positive Open Carry / LEO Interaction

Congrats not only to the Come and Take It – Texas group but the Austin Police officer !

This is how it should be.

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Now if we can get Open Carry of Handguns.

 

What Would the Antis Suggest?

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Okay…middle of the day; no apparent attempt to determine if the house was empty; dude just breaks a window and starts climbing in.

The home owner protecting at least his property; if not his life investigates the noise and sees the criminal breaking in. Shoots and kills the criminal breaking into his home. That is how it went down.

What will continue to go down is the police will finish their investigation, the District Attorney will present the case to a grand jury, and they’ll decide to bring charges or not. Still a costly process but one I don’t expect to end with charges brought. Especially not with the mom saying “yeah, this sounds like something he would do”.

But let’s turn the clock back and ask the antis what would they rather have the home owner do?

A.) Call the police and wait?
B.) Run out his house, leaving possessions – including a firearm behind for a criminal to steal and use for illegal drugs?C.) Fight him hand to hand after the criminal has gotten inside the house?
D.) Meekly stand there and let an unknown person with unknown intentions do what ever he wants to him?

3of those possibilities would have increased, not decreased, crime. One would still be violence but puts the home owner at a disadvantage. Either not used to physical violence, due to age, etc.

In contrast, the home owner’s actions not only stopped this crime but put an end to a long (some said 18 page rap sheet) career of crime.  Based on the recommendations of the anti-rights cultists; it is almost as if they want MORE crime to occur not less.

Please join the discussion.

 

An Argument Against “Gun Free Zones”

If people are willing to break the law over such a minor issue; do we really think that a sign prohibiting guns is going to work any better?

You’ve undoubtedly seen them on your way to work or home, panhandlers.

For the last year the City of Fort Worth has tested using signs to deter the practice by warning both panhandler and driver with the message, “soliciting from roadway prohibited.” However, at the first intersection where the signs were installed, about a year ago, you’ll still regularly see people begging for money or food. Those who work in the area said the signs don’t work.

“No they don’t, we still have them coming in here, panhandling every where,” said Alma Baca.

Baca works along the intersection at Interstate 20 and Hulen Street, where the signs were installed. She said they’ve done little to slow down those begging for spare change.

“I get one that stands right there and waits and waits and then walks out and asks people for money,” Baca said.

Standing next to a sign prohibiting the very same action — yep, really effective eh?

 

Reason for Open Carry?

How about 87 of them?

That was the High temp yesterday.
On November 17th.

 

 

Concealed Handgun and Voting

As I previously mentioned, without a lot of detail, I voted on Saturday. I’ve also previously mentioned that I have a Concealed Handgun License and generally carry where I morally and ethically can.

Some might wonder where the two statements intersect; the answer is in the law of course. Seems the Legislators think that those of us who carry firearms can’t be trusted to vote and not shoot up the place at the same time.

Sec. 46.03. PLACES WEAPONS PROHIBITED. (a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly possesses or goes with a firearm, illegal knife, club, or prohibited weapon listed in Section 46.05(a):

(1) on the physical premises of a school or educational institution, any grounds or building on which an activity sponsored by a school or educational institution is being conducted, or a passenger transportation vehicle of a school or educational institution, whether the school or educational institution is public or private, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the institution;

(2) on the premises of a polling place on the day of an election or while early voting is in progress;

There are more prohibited places but I want to just focus on #2 for now.

A couple of questions come to mind– I doubt if any anti-rights cultist will stop by and answer them but who knows. They might and the horse might learn to sing also.

Question #1 — How do you know that I didn’t carry on the premises at the polling location?

After all, the firearm has to be concealed from detection by a reasonable person, right? And unless the volunteers staffing the polls have extensive training and experience; they are unlikely to be able to detect a concealed firearm.

Question #2 — What harm was committed even IF I did carry on the premises of the polling place?

This isn’t a rhetorical question; I am seriously interested in someone explaining just what harm, what damage to someone in our society was created if someone carried a firearm with them to vote?

There was no scuffle, no fights, no shootings, no threats made, no drama of any type involved in the voting process. I drove up, walked in, showed my voter registration card and driver’s license, signed by on the line, got my “I voted” sticker then spent 2 minutes at the booth.

I understand some proposals or elections may be a little contentious but that isn’t the norm. Most elections are dull, boring and completely drama free. I wonder why legislators felt it necessary to include polling places in the list of prohibited places.

Question #3 — If the idea is to keep disturbances to a minimum; why doesn’t the penal code prohibit various other crimes at the polling place?

Look through the penal code and the election laws; there is a limit on how close people can advocate for near a polling location. Other then that, no other crime is called out as especially prohibited at the polls. No “no sexual assault at the polls” laws, no “pick pocketing prohibited” on the premises, “no aggravated assault at the polls” is listed.

Nope, just a prohibition against carrying weapons at the polls. Isn’t it difficult to argue that the laws are designed to change behavior when they aren’t focused on behavior but inanimate objects.

Question #4 — And this is really the key question; Does anyone really think that a person is going to change because the law draws an imaginary line around a certain place?

The law doesn’t cover just those with a Concealed Handgun License; it covers everyone. It prohibits everyone from carrying a weapon past the doors of the polls. Of course, without a license a person is breaking the law. Wouldn’t a person breaking the law by carrying without a license ignore one more law ?
And and the same time, wouldn’t a person who goes through the trouble of getting a license be generally willing to follow the law and not cause harm?

A person doesn’t change their values, their principles, their entire philosophy just because they are carrying a weapon or not, just because they cross some imaginary line. Nope, they are the same person aren’t they?

 

I want to make it very clear — some anti right cultists are a little thick — I didn’t break the law regarding the carrying a weapon at the polling place. My wife and I drove up to the polling location, we voted and came back home. When I dropped off my wife at home, I donned my concealed handgun and then proceeded on the errands I mentioned yesterday. Notice how I was willing to follow a law even though I see no purpose in it. Notice how criminals will go about their purpose without regard to the law. There is a big difference there and it really matters.

Please join the discussion.


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