Saturday 29 March 2014

 SCOTUS RULES DV GUN PROHIBITION CAN BE TRIGGERED BY MINIMAL PHYSICAL FORCE


From NRA-ILA:

Since 1996, the so-called "Lautenberg Amendment" (named for its sponsor, Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ)), has banned the acquisition or possession of firearms by anyone convicted of a "misdemeanor crime of domestic violence."  Applicable crimes are limited to those that have "as an element, the use or attempted use of physical force, or the threatened use of a deadly weapon" and that are committed by persons with a specified relationship to the victim, such as a current or former spouse or a parent.   The prohibition applies no matter when the offense occurred and can include convictions that predated the 1996 law.

Over the years, federal appellate courts have differed on what degree of "physical force" is necessary to trigger the disability.  Questions have also arisen over whether a conviction could count if it occurred under a statute that covered both acts requiring force and those that did not (such as simply scaring the victim).  Thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling last Wednesday in United States v. Castleman, one of these questions has now been resolved in a way that gives the federal prohibition its broadest possible reading.

James Alvin Castleman was convicted in Tennessee of "having intentionally or knowingly caused bodily injury" to his child's mother.  The statute in question could be violated in three separate ways: (1) intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing bodily injury to another; (2) intentionally or knowingly causing another reasonably to fear imminent bodily injury; or (3) intentionally or knowingly causing physical contact with another in a manner that a reasonable person would regard as extremely offensive or provocative (whether or not injury resulted).   The "injury" requirement of the first offense type was broadly defined to include a cut, abrasion, bruise, burn, disfigurement, physical pain, or temporary impairment of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.  Thus, the statute could be violated with no physical force whatsoever or very minor, non-injurious physical force.

Castleman claimed that his conviction did not trigger the federal disability, because Congress only meant to prohibit those convicted of domestic violence.  Thus, he claimed, the only statutes that could count were those that could only be violated by committing violent (or more than nominal) physical force.  A statute that could be violated by mere offensive touching (pushing, shoving, poking, grabbing, etc.) should not count.

The Court disagreed and found that as long as the statute required some degree of offensive physical contact for a violation to occur, a conviction under that statute would trigger the federal disability.  It did not, however, reach the question of whether broad statutes like Tennessee's, which could be violated with or without force, would always be counted.  This was because Castleman had admitted he was convicted under the most demanding test of the statute, that requiring actual physical injury.  The Court reasoned that any injury, no matter how slight, must require the use of at least some "physical force."

The Court provided a number of rationales for its holding.  It reasoned, for example, that that "domestic violence" is not violence in the commonly understood sense but in the broader sense of an accumulation of acts over time that established one person's control over another.  Thus, it could include not just injurious abuse but more minor physical acts including hitting, slapping, shoving, pushing, grabbing, pinching, scratching, shaking, twisting, spitting, or restraining.  The Court acknowledged that "most physical assaults committed against women and men by intimates are minor …."  Nevertheless, it also opined, "If a seemingly minor act like this draws the attention of authorities and leads to a successful pros­ecution for a misdemeanor offense, it does not offend common sense or the English language to characterize the resulting conviction as a 'misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.'"  

Importantly, the Court did not resolve the important question of whether so broad an application of the statute (and the resulting lifetime loss of the right to acquire and possess firearms) would violate the Second Amendment.  Essentially, it ruled that question was not properly before it and would have to be resolved in another case.

Besides applying to a broader range of convictions in the future, this ruling also means that prior convictions will become subject to the new rule in those jurisdictions that had embraced a narrower reading of the federal statute.  Federally licensed dealers are thus being notified that some customers who had formerly passed NICS checks may now be subject to denials.

The Court's interpretation of the statute is final and authoritative.  It can now only be changed by Congress.  Whether that will happen or whether a Second Amendment challenge will be brought to a broad application of the statute are questions only time will tell.

CSSA note:  Colorado has several misdemeanor criminal offenses that prohibit unlawful touching or minimal physical injury (as little as causing pain), including harassment and third-degree assault.

webmasteronSaturday 29 March 2014 - 12:16:41

Wednesday 19 March 2014

 Please call your U.S. Senators and Ask Them to Oppose the Confirmation of Vivek Murthy for U.S. Surgeon General


The National Rifle Association strongly opposes the confirmation of Vivek Murthy, as Surgeon General.

Click here to see a recent interview with NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox on Fox News.

The Surgeon General has the important tasks of providing the American public with information to better inform decisions related to their health and directing much of the federal government's public health efforts. In order for these roles to be carried out effectively, the public must trust that the Surgeon General's actions are based on empirical and scientific evidence, rather than political or ideological motives. In this regard, Dr. Murthy's record of political activism in support of radical gun control measures raises significant concerns about his ability to objectively examine issues pertinent to America's 100 million firearm owners and the likelihood he would use the office of Surgeon General to further his preexisting campaign against gun ownership.

Vivek Murthy agrees with President Barack Obama, Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Senator Dianne Feinstein's radical anti-gun agenda.  Dr. Murthy advocated on many occasions for the banning of lawfully-owned firearms and even worse - using tax dollars for the federal government to buy them back.  Furthermore, Dr. Murthy proposed stripping the vital privacy protections for gun owners in the "Affordable Care Act" so that doctors and insurance companies can keep information on lawful gun owners.  It's clear that Dr. Murthy would be a prescription for disaster for America's law-abiding gun owners.

Please call your U.S. Senators at (202) 224-3121 and let them know that you oppose the confirmation of Vivek Murthy for Surgeon General.


webmasteronWednesday 19 March 2014 - 12:16:41

Wednesday 12 March 2014

 THERE’S MORE TO THIS MENTAL HEALTH BILL THAN ITS SPONSORS ARE TELLING YOU!


This week, the Colorado House of Representatives is expected to consider House Bill 1253 (CLICK) for a second time.  HB 1253, introduced by state Representative Elizabeth McCann (D-8), is a potentially volatile piece of mental health reform legislation that could result in additional gun owners losing their fundamental, constitutional rights.  HB 1253 seeks to remove the option of a jury trial in certain civil commitment and substance abuse adjudications.  Removal of this route could lead to a loss of firearms rights for many individuals.

In addition, this bill seeks to alter the current definitions and reporting processes of individuals committed for mental health or substance abuse issues.  HB 1253 would expand the instances when those individuals must be submitted to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) to include emergency holds.  Further, it removes the requirement that danger to self or others be imminent in order to issue a mental health hold.  The expansive provisions in HB 1253 would increase the number of individuals submitted to NICS and therefore prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm.

Expansion of instances when a mental health hold can be issued and removal of the option to choose a jury trial in civil commitment and substance abuse adjudications will only work to harm individuals in Colorado.  This is a thinly veiled attempt to infringe on your Second Amendment rights.  Please contact your state Representative NOW and urge him or her to OPPOSE HB 1253. 

Contact information for members of the Colorado House of Representatives can be found by CLICKING HERE.
webmasteronWednesday 12 March 2014 - 12:16:41

Friday 24 January 2014

 2014 COLORADO LEGISLATION PERTAINING TO FIREARMS


With more bills still expected, several bills have already been introduced in this year’s regular session of the Colorado General Assembly.  Here’s a quick summary of the bills and their content:

Colorado House

HB 1041               
Eliminating permits for concealed carry by Colorado residents


This bill would adopt CCW policies similar to those passed in Alaska, which eliminate the requirement for special permits for state residents to carry concealed in lawful areas.  Assigned to Judiciary Committee.

HB 1063               
Include businesses in locations covered by “Make My Day” self-defense law


This bill would exempt from both criminal and civil liability persons who use deadly force against an unlawful intruder of a business.  Assigned to State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committee.

HB 1151               
Repeal of magazine capacity limit


Would repeal HB13-1224, which placed a 15-round limit on firearm magazine capacities.  Assigned to State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committee.

HB 1157               
Permitting school districts to authorize CCW by school employees


Would allow school districts to authorize lawful concealed carry by designated school employees, including teachers.  Assigned to Judiciary Committee.

HB 1166               
Require CCW renewal in county of residence/real property


Would change CCW renewal requirements to allow persons who change counties of residence to renew in their new county of residence without re-initiating a completely new application.  Assigned to Local Government Committee.

Colorado Senate

SB 38                    
Prohibiting confiscation of private firearms in declared emergencies


Would prohibit the governor, or any state agency, from confiscating private firearms during periods of declared emergencies.  Assigned to State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committee.

SB 90                    
Add exception of step-relatives for firearms background check requirements


Would add step-children and step-parents/grandparents to those exempted from background check requirements for firearms transfers.  Assigned to State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee.

SB 94                    
Repeal of background check requirement for private firearms transfers


Would repeal HB13-1229, which mandates FFL background checks for all firearms transfers.  Assigned to State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committee.

SB 100                  
Repeal of magazine capacity limit


Would repeal HB13-1224, which placed a 15-round limit on firearms magazines.  Assigned to State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committee.

Note that, with three exceptions, all bills have been sent to the notorious State, Veteran and Military Affairs Committees, often referred to as the “Kill Committee.”  This is where the Democrat leadership sends bills to ensure that they will NOT receive consideration by the entire body of that house of the General Assembly.  The “Kill Committee” is stacked with a majority of Democrats in “safe” districts who have little to fear politically from staunch, partisan votes.  The fact is that those bills listed above in the “Kill Committee” will likely die a very quick death and have no chance to be debated and voted on by the entire house, where Democrats who support gun rights could actually cause some of these great bills to be placed on the desk of Gov. Hickenlooper, who would be forced to veto them in a year where his approval ratings have plummeted and he’s facing re-election.  IT DOES MATTER WHAT PARTY CONTROLS THE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT.  One only has to look at Washington for further proof.

The election season has begun, and it’s never too early to start preparing to VOTE FREEDOM FIRST!

webmasteronFriday 24 January 2014 - 20:17:19

 NSSF: TARGET SHOOTERS CONTRIBUTE NEARLY $300M TO COLORADO ECONOMY


The National Shooting Sports Foundation has released a major new report about the importance of target shooting activities to the economies of Colorado and the nation. NSSF is the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industry.

The report, Target Shooting in America: Millions of Shooters, Billions of Dollars, was released today in conjunction with a press conference at the Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show (SHOT Show), the largest trade show of its kind in the world and a showcase for the firearms and ammunition industry.

The report provides a first-ever look at U.S. target shooting-related expenditures. Also included are state-by-state statistics for the number of target shooters, retail sales, taxes and jobs. The target-shooting report complements the Hunting in America report released by NSSF and the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies in March 2013.

In Colorado, target shooting-related spending contributed $286,941,648 to the state's economy and supported 2,574 jobs.

Nationally, the money target shooters spent in 2011 resulted in $23 billion being added to the nation's economy and supported more than 185,000 jobs.

"More people target shooting is good news for the industry, and it is equally good news for America’s economy," said NSSF President and CEO Steve Sanetti.

Retail sales related to target shooting account for nearly $10 billion, with rifle and handgun shooting being the leading contributors, followed by shotgun and muzzleloader shooting. California and Texas are the top two states ranked by retail sales.

Combining data from Target Shooting in America and Hunting in America shows that target shooters and hunters together poured more than $110 billion into the nation’s economy, fueling more than 866,000 jobs. “Communities and businesses of all sizes benefit from these activities,” said Sanetti.

Target shooters ($8.2 billion) and hunters ($8.4 billion) spend nearly equal amounts on equipment common to both pursuits, such as firearms, ammunition and accessories. Hunters spend more overall than target shooters when factors such as fuel, food, lodging and transportation are included.

“The Target Shooting in America and Hunting in America reports give us a more complete understanding of the economic importance of the shooting sports to America,” said Sanetti. “We’ve long known about the recreational benefits of these activities, and now we know how much they contribute to our country’s financial well-being.”

Read Target Shooting in America: Millions of Shooters, Billions of Dollars or view the report as a printable PDF.

webmasteronFriday 24 January 2014 - 20:15:10

Friday 03 January 2014

 COLORADO PARTY PRECINCT CAUCUS TUESDAY, MARCH 4!


It’s time to get off the sidelines and into the game!  Plan on attending your party’s precinct caucus meeting on Tuesday, March 4 at 7 PM.  The caucus is the very first step in each party’s nomination process for this year’s important elections in November.  Each county is comprised of precincts, or voter zones; these are the smallest units of political areas in the state.  Each precinct holds a party caucus every two years to elect delegates to nominating assemblies for county, district, state and federal offices.  You cannot become a delegate to ANY nominating assembly/convention unless you are first elected as a delegate or alternate to your county assembly, which is usually held 2-4 weeks after the caucus.

To be eligible to participate in your precinct caucus, you must be a registered AFFILIATED (Democrat or Republican) voter who has resided in your precinct for at least sixty days prior to March 4.  You can find out the location of your caucus by contacting your county political party or state party office.  The nominating process is critical in every election…you can play a great role in whom your party nominates for every political office in the upcoming November election.  But you must attend your party caucus March 4 and run for delegate. 

If you’re tired of candidates who don’t support your First Freedom to keep and bear arms, do something about it! 

Attend your party caucus March 4!


webmasteronFriday 03 January 2014 - 12:16:41

Friday 20 December 2013

 TRIAL DATE SET IN FEDERAL LAWSUIT CHALLENGING 2013 GUN CONTROL LAWS


A trial date has been set in the federal court challenge to HB13-1224, which bans magazines of greater than 15-rounds, and HB13-1229, which requires background checks on all firearms transfers regardless of the nature/origin of the transaction, for March 31, 2014.  CSSA and club member Family Shooting Center at Cherry Creek State Park, along with several other plaintiffs including several county sheriffs, National Shooting Sports Foundation, Magpul, Inc., several Colorado FFL dealers, Colorado Farm Bureau, Colorado Outfitters Association, and other non-profit groups and private individuals, are asking the U.S. District Court to invalidate both laws as violative of the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Earlier this fall, the federal court ruled that Colorado county sheriffs, nearly all of which were original plaintiffs in this lawsuit, could not sue the governor in their official capacity as county sheriffs.  Eleven of the original 55 sheriff plaintiffs, however, including John Cooke of Weld County, have been allowed by the court to remain as plaintiffs in their individual capacity as citizens.  In the same decision, the court also ruled that a technical guidance letter from the Colorado Attorney General, prepared to head-off a preliminary injunction sought by the plaintiffs, had clarified any ambiguity regarding the language “designed to be readily converted” as it applied to magazines of 15-round or less with removable floorplates.  The technical guidance letter states that magazines are not in violation of that  particular clause unless/until they are actually modified to accept a capacity greater than 15 rounds.  At trial, in addition to the Second Amendment claims, the court will decide whether the continuous possession requirement of the “grandfather clause” permitting continued ownership of magazines over 15 rounds is unconstitutionally vague, and whether HB13-1224 violates the Americans with Disabilities Act by improperly restricting a means of self-defense for disabled persons.

CSSA, represented by President and Castle Rock attorney Tony Fabian, has been proud to be one of the litigants challenging these egregious encroachments on our Second Amendment liberties.  Our participation is but one example of a long history of fighting for gun rights and expanding shooting opportunities in Colorado.  Your continued support of our efforts is critical to our success.  Please end this year by striking a blow for freedom—renew or upgrade your membership, give a membership as a gift, or make a special contribution to aid our court battle—federal litigation is expensive.

The federal lawsuit is but just one front in the war to protect and preserve the Second Amendment.  To paraphrase Winston Churchill, we will fight on ALL FRONTS in this upcoming election year to protect the rights of law-abiding Colorado shooters, hunters and gun-owners! 

As many posters reminded during WWII, it’s time to “DO YOUR PART!”
webmasteronFriday 20 December 2013 - 12:16:41

Tuesday 17 December 2013

 CMP CONFRONTS AMMO SHORTAGE


The CMP has been notified by ammunition manufacturers and distributors to expect price increases and significant delivery delays for all calibers of ammunition, especially for .22 rimfire. The price increases and delays apply to orders we have already placed with the manufacturers. Prior to 2013 CMP received deliveries of truckloads of ammo within a few weeks of placing orders. We are now being advised, as in the case of Aguila .22, that it may take several years to receive all of the 35,000,000 rounds of Aguila ammo we have on order.

As a result of this situation, CMP has placed orders with several different manufacturers for large amounts of ammunition in various calibers. We expect to receive only a few pallets at a time because manufacturers and distributors are rationing the ammo to their customers. As we receive ammo, we will contact customers with oldest orders already in place with the option to purchase whatever we receive at the new prices, cancel the order, or remain on the list for the manufacturer they originally requested. All price increases to CMP will be passed on to the customer. CMP will not be profiting from the increase in prices.

We will continue to accept orders for ammunition, with the understanding that the wait time for customers between placing an order and receiving the ammunition may be anywhere from a few weeks to a few years. Most other retailers are in the same situation as the CMP. We suggest that customers leave their CMP orders in place and not cancel until they are able to purchase ammo elsewhere.  CMP customers will be contacted as to pricing and manufacturer before any orders are filled. We do not expect to have any additional information until after the annual SHOT Show in mid-January, when we will meet with all of the ammo manufacturers.



webmasteronTuesday 17 December 2013 - 12:16:41

Monday 02 December 2013

 COLORADO SPRINGS GAZETTE: GUNS FOR CHRISTMAS REQUIRES CLOSE REVIEW OF NEW LAWS


An article in the Colorado Springs Gazette reminds holiday gun shoppers that giving that special Christmas gift of a firearm could land one afoul of Colorado’s new gun laws.  HB13-1229, enacted this spring, prohibits transferring possession of a firearm unless/until the transferee passes a background check conducted by CBI through a licensed firearms dealer. 

There is an exception for a one-time gift between IMMEDIATE family members—spouses, parents, children, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and first cousins.  However, any other firearm gift transfer cannot be legally completed without a background check conducted by a licensed dealer.  Naturally, this can be extremely problematic because background checks cannot practically be conducted on minors.  Keep in mind that the new law does not REQUIRE dealers to conduct checks between private parties, so purchasers should inquire of the dealers from whom they purchase gift firearms if they will also conduct a background check of the gift recipient.  

Violations of the new background check requirement constitute a Class One Misdemeanor, punishable by up to eighteen months in jail and a $5,000 fine.  Further, the new law states that a person who illegally transfers a firearm assumes strict liability for any injuries resulting from the illegal transfer.

The Gazette article may be found at
http://gazette.com/giving-guns-as-gifts-beware-new-laws/article/1510217
webmasteronMonday 02 December 2013 - 12:16:41

Thursday 28 November 2013

 DON’T LOOK NOW—ELECTION YEAR IS RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER!


Today’s announcement by anti-gun State Senator Evie Hudak (D-Westminster) that she will resign rather than face the same recall fate as fellow Senators John Morse (D-Fountain) and Angela Giron (D-Pueblo) is a great victory for gun-owners and freedom-lovers.  However, it is likely that Hudak’s replacement will be another anti-gun Democrat, so the state senate will continue to be led next year by strong supporters of this session’s slew of gun-control laws.  We can change that next November by removing those legislators who ignored the will of the Colorado voters, along with the Michael Bloomberg-controlled Governor that stood in lock-step with them, and replace them with defenders of our First Freedom to keep and bear arms to protect ourselves and our families.

The election process will begin in early March 2014 with  party caucuses on Tuesday, March 4.  It is important to affiliate, register, and attend your precinct caucus, where delegates who nominate candidates for local, state and national office are chosen.  The caucus is grassroots politics at its core, and one of the best ways to ensure the nomination and eventual election of pro-Second Amendment candidates.  Some important dates to mark on your calendar:

January 3            
Last date to affiliate with a political party in order to participate in the March caucus

February 2         
Last date to update your address in order to participate in your LOCAL precinct caucus.  If you have moved in the last two years, you may still be registered as an elector at your OLD address—this information needs to be updated.

March 4               
Party caucuses

June 24                
State primary election

November 4      
General election

If you aren’t registered to vote, REGISTER!

If you are not affiliated with a political party, AFFILIATE!  For those who grumble about the two major parties, keep the following in mind.  First, unaffiliated voters cannot play a role in the nomination process.  If you are unaffiliated, then you will be stuck with choosing between candidates that you played no part in selecting.  And, regardless of what you may think about the major parties, one of the candidates they nominate WILL be elected to the office they are running for.  And, despite any issues you may have with either or both major parties, there is ENORMOUS difference between them when it comes to the Second Amendment.

So get registered/affiliated and GET INVOLVED!

We here in Colorado know more than most about the consequences of elections—when you put the wrong people in office, you put your rights in peril. 

Register and VOTE FREEDOM FIRST!

webmasteronThursday 28 November 2013 - 12:16:41

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