DOJ Says One Thing And Does Another

The Department of Justice announced a new regulation and plans to update the definition as just who is a dealer in firearms. I won’t get into the meat of the proposal but one thing in their release just jumped out at me.

From the news release:

Federally licensed firearms dealers are critical partners to federal, state, local, Tribal, and territorial law enforcement in our shared goal of promoting public safety. They help keep firearms out of the hands of prohibited persons by running background checks on potential purchasers; ensure that crime guns can be traced back to their first retail purchaser by keeping records of transactions; and facilitate safe storage of firearms by providing child-safety locks with every transferred handgun and offering customers other secure gun storage options.

If FFLs are such critical partners to law enforcement in the shared goal of promoting public safety, then why does the Biden Administration demand the ATF treat them like shit?

There are stories after story about how the ATF’s Industry Operations Inspectors are combing the records of dealers during their audits looking for something, anything, with which to use to revoke the dealer’s license. They are deeming clerical errors as “willful” and thus subject to zero tolerance. Moreover, if a dealer just happens to be a plaintiff in a civil rights lawsuit against the ATF, they are doubly sure of getting a rectal exam type of audit from ATF. Witness the cases of Michael Cargill in Texas and Morehouse Enterprises in North Dakota.

Murder On UNC Campus

On Monday afternoon, a Ph.D. graduate student from China murdered Prof. Zijie Yan on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Yan was an associate professor in the Department of Applied Physical Science and a noted expert in nanoscience. He was both the murderer’s advisor as well as co-author with him on a number of academic publications. No other students or faculty were targeted or harmed.

Was this a school shooting? I guess you could say it was only in the strictest sense as the location of the murder was on the university campus. Given the personal nature of this murder, it could have taken place anywhere.

Notwithstanding the personal nature of this murder, Everytown, Moms Demand Action, and Students Demand Action had issued a press release on it by 8pm Monday evening. The press release was a data dump of statistics and other data that had no relevance to the murder on campus. It was also an attack on the Republicans in the North Carolina General Assembly for overriding Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the repeal of the pistol purchase permit.

From the press release:

This past session, North Carolina passed a dangerous bill that repealed the background check requirement for unlicensed handgun sales. The bill was vetoed by North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, but then overridden by the legislature.

The pistol purchase permit was a Jim Crow-era law that was designed to prevent blacks from purchasing handguns. It was issued by the sheriff of the applicant’s county and was good for 5 years. Unlike the NICS check system that is constantly updated, once a person had the permit, he or she could commit a disqualifying crime yet still walk into a gun store and purchase a firearm. Yes it would be illegal and they would be lying on the Form 4473 but they could obtain a firearm. Thus, you have the gun control industry complaining about the repeal of an ineffective law that came into being in order to further solidify the racist, white supremacist regime of early 20th century NC Democrats.

Another press release solidified this line of attack on the pistol purchase permit and noted they would be protesting along with the UNC College Democrats.

The walkouts come in response to a legislative session where Republican lawmakers passed a law to repeal background checks on handguns, which Governor Roy Cooper vetoed but the legislature overrode. The bill, SB41, repealed the pistol purchase permit, effectively creating a loophole between state and federal gun laws in which a person would be able to purchase handguns at gun shows or from strangers they meet online with no background check, no questions asked.

Given the overwhelming majority of handgun purchases at any gun show which I’ve attended have been with FFL’s who do run a NICS check, this is bullshit.

What this hyperbole ignores is in working to create the impression that if only the evil Republicans cared less about constitutional rights and more about gun control then the murder of Prof. Yan would not have happened. The killer has been charged with both murder and possession of a firearm on a university campus. As of now, police still have not recovered the pistol used by the murderer. It has been described as a 9mm but who knows. Thus, we do not know how he obtained the firearm.

These leads to another law that the killer is assumed to have broken. As he was a Chinese national in the United States on a student visa, he was considered legally a nonimmigrant alien. Unless he met a specific exemption, he was not allowed to possess or purchase either a firearm or ammunition. We don’t know if he possessed a hunting license which was have been a valid exception. Further, to be honest, the law is not clear on whether possession of a firearm by a non-immigrant alien who meets the valid exception pertains to all firearms or merely to long guns.

The bottom line here is the repeal of the pistol purchase permit is irrelevant. Further, for all the wailing and gnashing of teeth, cries that I was scared due to the campus lockdown, and who is going to protect us, this was a targeted murder whose location just happened to be on the UNC campus and could have been anywhere.

DSC North Carolina Chapter Organizing

The North Carolina Chapter of Dallas Safari Club is in the process of being organized. Currently, the only chapters DSC has in the Southeast are in the Low Country of South Carolina (Charleston) and in Georgia.

I received a text this past week from Emaneul “Kappie” Kapp announcing the formation meeting. He has been active in the Georgia Chapter and is helping organize the North Carolina Chapter.

The meeting is scheduled for Saturday, September 16th, at 11am at Suffolk Punch Bowl Brewing South End. The address is 2911 Griffith St, Charlotte, NC.

Kappie told me in a follow-up email that DSC has approximately 100 members in North Carolina. I would add that even though there is a South Carolina Chapter, Charlotte is a lot closer than Charleston to the Upstate of SC as well as to Rock Hill.

From what I understand, Bruce Boroski, DSC Chapter Development Manager, will be joining Kappie at the meeting.

So if you live in NC, the Upstate, or the Rock Hill area and you have an interest in promoting the DSC mission of conservation, education, and advocacy, I would urge you to attend this meeting. Even though this is a 2 1/2 hour drive for me, I intend on coming down from the mountains to attend.

Playing Politics With Guns In St. Louis

Leftist politicians everywhere would prefer to blame the implement rather than the criminal who used it. Such is the case in St. Louis, Missouri where Mayor Tishaura Jones (D-St. Louis) is proposing a multitude of new firearms ordinances.

From her press release issued yesterday:

  • Prohibit military-grade weapons on our streets 
  • Prevent transfer or sale of guns to minors
  • Take action on ghost guns and similar untraceable firearms
  • Prepare St. Louis for the passage of Blair’s Law
  • Prohibit insurrectionists and those convicted of hate crimes from having guns

She goes on to say:

“In the coming days, in partnership with the Mayor’s Office, aldermen are ready to introduce commonsense gun safety legislation,” said Mayor Tishaura O. Jones. “We come together around a shared vision: a safer, stronger St. Louis, ready to stand up for our values. We know Missourians are demanding state-level action to pass measures like red-flag laws and background checks, but we are ready to try every tool available to us at the local level to protect families from gun violence.”

As the St. Louis Post-Dispatch notes on her press conference, she includes AR-15s and AK-47s in the list of firearms subject to prohibition. Mayor Jones also expects blowback from Republican legislators.

Other than the obvious constitutionality issues with Mayor Jones’ moves at gun control, there is an even bigger obstacle at the state level. Missouri has state preemption on all issues regarding firearms with the exceptions of banning open carry to those without a carry permit and regulating discharge within municipal boundaries.

Missouri General Statute 21.750 states, in part:

 *21.750.  Firearms legislation preemption by general assembly, exceptions — limitation on civil recovery against firearms or ammunitions manufacturers, when, exception. — 1.  The general assembly hereby occupies and preempts the entire field of legislation touching in any way firearms, components, ammunition and supplies to the complete exclusion of any order, ordinance or regulation by any political subdivision of this state.  Any existing or future orders, ordinances or regulations in this field are hereby and shall be null and void except as provided in subsection 3 of this section.

  2.  No county, city, town, village, municipality, or other political subdivision of this state shall adopt any order, ordinance or regulation concerning in any way the sale, purchase, purchase delay, transfer, ownership, use, keeping, possession, bearing, transportation, licensing, permit, registration, taxation other than sales and compensating use taxes or other controls on firearms, components, ammunition, and supplies except as provided in subsection 3 of this section.

Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey reacted swiftly to Mayor Jones’ attention-grabbing pronouncements. He reminded her that Missouri has strict scrutiny with regard to firearms laws and that her proposed ordinances were against Missouri general statutes.

When speaking of St. Louis, it should be noted that the city and the county are not one and the same. St. Louis County has a population of just less than one million people. The City of St. Louis, by contrast, has a population of 296,000. What locals refer to as North County, West County, and South County compromise a much larger proportion of the population than the City.

Does the City of St. Louis have issues with crime? Absolutely. Are the guns recovered by police at the scene of crimes AR-15s or AK-47s? Not really. 90% of all firearms recovered are handguns.

The meme below does give an indication of the level of crime in St. Louis. Perhaps if Mayor Jones focused more on criminals and gangs she would have more success than focusing on firearms.

For Sale For A Friend – FN Five-seveN

My friend Cliff has a FN Five-seveN for sale. Given he has two, he is looking to sell one of them.

He is selling one of his FN FiveseveN pistols. It comes with three 20-round magazines and some ammo. He said he paid $1,200 for it but is willing to sell it for $900. This seems like a great price to me as I am seeing them on starting at $1,150. If this was something I wanted or needed, I would have jumped on it myself. Frankly, I don’t think Cliff has put many rounds through this pistol.

Stock photo – not actual pistol for sale.

If you are interested or want to know more about the pistol, please contact Cliff O. at inhisstepscliff AT gmail DOT com. You can also call him at 828-707-0603.

Cliff is a great guy and is the co-coordinator of the Grass Roots North Carolina booth at the Asheville Gun Show with me.

UPDATE: Cliff requested that if you plan to call him about the FN Five-sevenN that you text him first. Use “FN 57” in your text. If you have already called him about the pistol, he may have not answered due to not recognizing the number. Cliff is a senior citizen so is a bit more careful about screening his calls.

Not THAT Mike Hammer

In my email this morning, I received an alert from the US State Department with the following headline:

Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Mike Hammer Travels to Stockholm and Brussels

Given I am a fan of older detective stories such as those from Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane, the name struck a chord with me. I’m like “are we really sending Mike Hammer to Stockholm to discuss water issues or is he just there to hang out with blonde Swedish dames with great gams?”

Sort of like the creator of Mike Hammer in this 1970s ad for Lite Beer from Miller.

Was this Mike Hammer like the early Mike Hammer played by Darren McGavin?

Or was he more like the later Mike Hammer played by Stacy Keach? Does he carry a .45ACP 1911 or does he carry a .38 Special J-frame?

Unfortunately, I don’t think this Mike Hammer is as cool as Spillane’s hard-boiled detective.

Official US State Dept photo

This Mike is a career Foreign Service Officer with degrees from Georgetown, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and the National War College. He also speaks four languages in addition to English. He holds the FSO rank of Minister-Counselor which is equivalent to a 2-star general.

While I’m sure this guy is supremely qualified for the job of Special Envoy, I actually prefer Mickey Spillane’s version as that one seems more authentic even if he is fiction.

Deal On 30-Caliber Plastic Ammo Cans

Harbor Freight is having their “parking lot” sale this weekend both in-store and online. While I don’t buy critical tools from them, they are OK for occasional use tools as well as some odds and ins. One of those odds and ins is their 30- caliber size plastic ammo cans. Officially they are called the ammo dry box and they do have a rubber gasket to seal out moisture.

They are on sale this weekend for $2.95 each. I just bought 10 of them to store brass by caliber and to store bullets for reloading. I am finding that I as I pick up a box of bullets here and a partial box there that I’m losing track of what I have.

Are they the best quality that is out there? Probably not but they will, as economists say, satisfice and they will do the job for which they are intended by me.

I have similar boxes at Cabela’s and Bass Pro Shops for upwards of $19 each. Are they worth that much more than the Harbor Freight ones? I doubt it.

If I planned to store and carry really heavy items, I’d probably go for the used GI metal ammo cans. I have a number of those so I think the plastic ones will do.

SCI And Sportsmen’s Alliance File Intent To Sue

Safari Club International and the Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation have filed a Notice of Intent to Sue with the US Department of Education over the department’s interpretation of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. That interpretation states that archery and hunter safety programs in schools are ineligible for Federal funding as a result of the 2022 law.

From the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education FAQ released in April 2023 on the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act:

D-1. May Stronger Connections funds be used to arm teachers or other individuals,
or to provide training in the use of weapons?

No. Section 13401 of the BSCA amended Section 8526 of the ESEA to prohibit the use of ESEA funds, including those under Stronger Connections, to provide to any person a dangerous weapon or training in
the use of a dangerous weapon. A “dangerous weapon” as defined in section 930(g)(2) of title 18 of the United States Code is a weapon, device, instrument, material, or substance, animate or inanimate, that
is used for, or is readily capable of, causing death or serious bodily injury,
except that such term does not include a pocketknife with a blade of less than 2 1/2 inches in length. Accordingly, funds may not be used, for example, to purchase a firearm or to train teachers to use a firearm.

SCI and the Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation filed the Intent to Sue on Friday, August 11th. They argued that the Department of Education’s interpretation was “arbitrary and capricious”, contrary to law, violated the Administrative Procedures Act, and misconstrued the intent of Congress. The Notice of Intent to Sue gave the Department 10 days to respond or a suit would be filed seeking to correct the misinterpretation of the law.

A number of House Republicans have sent a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona objecting to the Department’s interpretation of the law. Spearheading the move were House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Education and Workforce Committee Chair Virginia Foxx (R-NC), and Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC). Three sponsors of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act in the Senate – Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), John Cornyn (R-TX), and Thom Tillis (R-NC) have likewise said the Department is misinterpreting the the law.

Rep. Mark Green (R-TN) has introduced H.R. 5110 to amend the Elementary and Secondary Act of 1965. The bill would clarify “that the prohibition on the use of Federal education funds for certain weapons does not apply to the use of such weapons for training in archery, hunting, or other shooting sports.” That bill was introduced on August 1st and currently has 26 co-sponsors including one Democrat (Rep. Mary Peltola of Alaska). The bill has been referred to the House Education and Workforce Committee.

I am happy to see that SCI and the Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation has stepped up. Likewise, I am glad some in Congress want to make a correction. I will also say that none of this would have been an issue if a number of RINO Republicans in both the House and Senate hadn’t caved to pressure from the gun control industry to “do something”. I thought it was foolish then and I think it remains so today.

You can read the full Notice of Intent to Sue below:


National Rum Day

National Rum Day is celebrated on August 16th.

In colonial America rum was the drink of choice. A tax on non-British West Indies produced molasses was a bone of contention between the American colonists and Great Britain. The Molasses Act of 1733 created the tax to try and give molasses from the British West Indies (islands such as Jamaica and Barbados) a leg up over that from the French West Indies. However, the colonists effectively nullified the Act through smuggling of molasses from French and Dutch sources and it was repealed in 1767.

Rum is made from molasses which comes from sugar cane. Spirits such as rhum agricole and the Brazilian cachaca, while similar, are made from fermented sugar cane juice.

Rum or rhum is made around the world. I have bottles of it from Barbados, Jamaica, Colombia, Panama, Martinique, Haiti, and the US (Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands) in my collection.

There are a number of rums that come from the state of Hawaii. A quick search on the Internet finds rums being distilled on the islands of Oaha, Kauai, Hawaii, and Maui.

As has been extensively reported, wildfires on the last island mentioned, Maui, have left homes destroyed, people killed, and families uprooted. One factor that made the wildfires worse was the decline in sugar cane production which let non-native invasive grasses to flourish. These dry grasses provided an abundance of fuel for the fire. There had been upwards of 36,000 acres of sugar cane grown in the area around Lahaina through the late 1990s. The last sugar cane mill on Maui closed in 2016.

National Rum Day is a good day to remember our fellow citizens in Maui and to help them out. If you want to make donations, here are a couple of non-profits that I trust to spend the money wisely.

The Salvation Army of Hawaii

Catholic Charities of Hawaii