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    Gun Laws

    Gun Laws

    I never paid much attention to gun laws.  Now that I’ve finished my NRA basic handgun course, I’ll start on what will be a very, very long process to get a hand gun permit.

    The laws are byzantine.  In New York State, where I live about half the year, I need a permit even to possess a handgun at home.  I cannot even shoot at a range using someone else’s gun (unless as part of training under the supervision of an NRA certified trainer).  The home possession permit process will take at least six months, maybe longer.  As to a concealed carry permit, I’ve been told to forget about it in Tompkins County (Ithaca).

    But of course, that leaves the other six months.  The Florida non-resident concealed carry permit, which is good in 32 states, is not good in NY or Rhode Island.  In Rhode Island (as far as I can tell with a quick check), I don’t need a permit to keep a gun at home or to transport it to a shooting range, but any other use, including transporting it in the car more generally, would require a permit for which I would need to show good cause and need.

    Getting from NY to RI requires that I also figure out Massachusetts law on the subject.

    Being the law-abiding citizen that I am, I’ll spend the time and money to figure out all the local and state laws, and comply with them all.  It will not be easy, and I can see how someone with good intentions still could run afoul of the law.  So maybe a year or so from now I’ll have all the permits in place. 

    Gun control advocates, of which I am one up to a point, can sleep soundly knowing that they have kept a gun out of my law-abiding hands.

    The criminals have it much easier. They just buy guns on the street and shoot ’em up:

    An Elmira man was wounded in a shooting early Saturday in Ithaca, police said.

    Russell Blackman was shot at least three times with a small-caliber firearm, Ithaca police said.

    Police said they responded to a report of gun shots around 1:40 a.m. at the 500 block of West Green Street, and found blood on the street and sidewalk. Police did not find Blackman, but they learned he had been taken in a private vehicle to Cayuga Medical Center.

    The guy who was shot himself is a fugitive from justice, and apparently he’s not talking about the shooter.  And I doubt he’s real worried about the gun laws.

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    Dear Professor,

    You and me both!

    Takes about 15 minutes at my gun store.



    Can you move to Wisconsin.

    In additon to being able to support a great Governor their laws (for a rifle anyway) are pretty much common sense gun safety.

    And Ms Althouse would probally like someone to take some of the lefty attention.

    For better or worse, we already have a law and system for background checks, at least for sales by businesses (although one might wonder about prior restraint on a Constitutional right…). A few states have some restrictions on private transfers, especially of handguns, but not many especially seeing as how difficult enforcement would be. The delay for the NICS is significantly less time than it takes to fill out the BATF paper form so it does not impose an undue burden as long as it continues to be run honestly.

    One bit of advice on self-defense caliber selection: if you follow Dr. Martin Fackler, at handgun bullet velocities "stopping power" scales with the area of the bullet, assuming there's adequate penetration (can be iffy for .380 ACP which is also 9 mm Kurz (short), which is considered by most to be the weakest practical round for self-defense).

    So I recommend you check out .40 S&W; (10 mm) and .45 ACP (11.5 mm), each step scaling disproportionately ( pi * r^2 ); note that while .45 ACP will have noticabely different and strong recoil than the smaller rounds, it's not a hunting round like the .44 Magnum which in typical loadings has to 3 or a bit more times the energy than .45 ACP.

    For this sort of thing there's no substitute for just trying out the different possibilities and seeing what works best for you and yours.

    Pick up the "Traveler's Guide to the Firearm Laws of the 50 States" by J. Scott Kappas. It was highly recommended by the instructor in my pistol class.

    Be sure to get the 2011 edition. Laws have been changing FAST, and even the latest edition is out of date.

    @Pasadena Phil

    "I'm available 24/7. My strength is that I don't look like the type. I'm the proverbial "last guy you would ever expect."

    Phil, I do look like the type. They'll be aiming at me as you take care of them one by one.

    Professor, don't worry. We'll take care of KAOS and every other evil subsidiary of Media Matters (hope you're a Get Smart fan).

    My favorite Get Smart quote:

    The evil Ludwig von Siegfried (Bernie Kopell) to Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon):

    "Nein! Nein! Ninety-nine!"

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