Head In The Sand Approach Doesn’t Help Gun Rights – Or Gun Rights Organizations

The Illinois State Rifle Association has always been at the forefront in the fight for gun rights. They are the NRA affiliate in the Prairie State but have often paired with the Second Amendment Foundation on lawsuits. I’ve met their executive director Richard Pearson at a number of Gun Rights Policy Conferences. I respect the work he does in a state with so many challenges to the Second Amendment.

Sometimes, however, you have to disagree with people respect and call out a head in the sand attitude. Thus is the case with something Richard wrote in today’s ISRA Thursday Bulletin.

The NRA is under constant attack these days. These attacks come in a couple of ways. First, of course, is just a straightforward attack on the Second Amendment and law-abiding gun owners. That is you and me folks. The second part of the attack is a propaganda campaign to make members doubt their own organization. Don’t fall for it. This whole propaganda attack is funded by Bloomberg and others like him. Bloomberg and company are trying to erode the loyal NRA base and prevent potential new members from joining. Has the NRA ever made any mistakes? Probably, but so has every other organization. If the NRA did, it was with the best intentions in trying to defend our Second Amendment. I have no qualms about that.

He is correct that the NRA is under attack from the gun prohibitionists.  However, I take exception to what Richard characterizes as the second part of the attack. Yes, The Trace is a Bloomberg funded organization and yes it contributed to the reporting in The New Yorker. However, as a NRA Board Member said to me, facts don’t lie. What was printed in The New Yorker is an expose’ of the NRA but that doesn’t make it wrong or incorrect. Moreover, self-dealing and feathering one’s own nest through insider deals is not “with the best intentions in trying to defend our Second Amendment.” What those involved have done is put the future of the organization at risk through their personal avarice.

I have plenty of qualms about that.

Good News – A Win In Illinois

Daniel Easterday, the Second Amendment Foundation, and the Illinois State Rifle Association scored a win today in Lake County Circuit Court when they were granted a temporary restraining order against the enforcement of Deerfield’s assault weapon (sic) and magazine ban. The ban which was scheduled to go into effect tomorrow (June 13th) would have levied an up to $1,000 a day fine plus surrender of the firearm for each day the person violated the ordinance.

Congratulations to Glen Ellyn (IL) attorney David Sigale who served as second chair in the monumental McDonald v. Chicago case.

Both SAF and ISRA issued releases on this win.

First, from SAF:

A circuit court judge in Lake County, Illinois has granted an injunction against the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, blocking the village from enforcing a ban on so-called “assault weapons,” and handing a victory to the Second Amendment Foundation.

SAF was joined in the lawsuit by the Illinois State Rifle Association and Deerfield resident Daniel Easterday, who is a lawful firearms owner. SAF and ISRA had challenged the ban on the grounds that it violates the state’s preemption law that was adopted in 2013. That change amended state statute that declared “the regulation of the possession or ownership of assault weapons are exclusive powers and functions of this State. Any ordinance or regulation, or portion of that ordinance or regulation, that purports to regulate the possession or ownership of assault weapons in a manner that is inconsistent with this Act, shall be invalid…”

There was a short grace period during which municipalities in the state could change or adopt their gun laws, and Deerfield maintained that its ban was merely an amendment to an earlier ordinance that regulated firearms.

“We moved swiftly to challenge this gun ban because it flew in the face of state law,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “The village tried to disguise its extremism as an amendment to an existing ordinance. The ordinance bans possession of legally-owned semi-auto firearms, with no exception for guns previously owned, or any provision for self-defense.

“Worse, still,” he added, “the ordinance also provided for confiscation and destruction of such firearms and their original capacity magazines. It was outrageous that the ban would levy fines of up to $1,000 a day against anyone who refused to turn in their gun and magazines or move them out of the village. This certainly puts the lie to claims by anti-gunners that ‘nobody is coming to take your guns.’”

Plaintiffs were represented by Glen Ellyn attorney David Sigale.

And now from ISRA:

The Illinois State Rifle Association is pleased to announce the issuing of a Temporary Restraining Order preventing Deerfield Illinois from enforcing their anti-gun ordinance. We will now seek a permanent injunction.

Lawsuit Against Deerfield (Illinois) AWB Makes Fox And Friends

Richard Pearson, Executive Director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, was interviewed this morning on Fox and Friends regarding the lawsuit that ISRA and the Second Amendment Foundation have filed against the Village of Deerfield, Illinois. The lawsuit seeks a restraining order against the village’s recently enacted assault weapons (sic) and high capacity (sic) magazine ban on the grounds that village doesn’t have the authority to do so under Illinois state law.

You can see the video of the interview here.

ISRA Needs Witness Slips As Illinois Gun Dealer Licensing Bill Rises Again

The gun prohibitionists in Illinois never give up. They have brought back their gun dealer state licensing plan in another form and the Illinois State Rifle Association needs Illinois residents to send in witness slips.

Let’s face it – the goal of this bill is to put the small gun dealer out of business. You may have the right to keep and bear arms but if you can’t buy any arms the gun culture will shrink. That is the ultimate goal of these gun banners. Make it so hard for people to buy guns that they will just give up.

Details below:

Witness Slips Need In Illinois – III

Illinois State Rifle Association issued this alert regarding the elimination of state preemption with regard to “assault weapons”.

To read the particular bill, click on the link SB2314 below, click on Full Text.

Scheduled Date 4/17/2018 – 4:00 PM

Synopsis: Amends the Firearm Owners Identification Card Act. Provides that the regulation of the possession or ownership of assault weapons are exclusive powers and functions of each municipality (rather than this State) . Eliminates existing preemption provision concerning the regulation of assault weapons.  This provision would mean, if passed, that a person maybe fully legal in one municipality but if transporting a particular firearm to another municipality be in violation of that municipality’s law.  The ISRA’s view is that this should remain the purview of the State and NOT individual municipalities.


Click on the following link Create a WitnessSlip

I. IDENTIFICATION: Enter your personal information. Enter “NA” for the Firm/Business or Agency and Title fields unless you are officially representing an organization.
II. REPRESENTATION: Enter “Myself” unless representing an organization.
III. POSITION: Select Original Bill and choose Opponent.
IV. TESTIMONY: Select the “Record of Appearance Only” radio button.
If filing manually, complete the Captcha challenge and agree to the ILGA Terms of Agreement.
Then click Create Slip.


Click on the following link View a Witness Slip 

For My Friends In Illinois

One of the most important annual gun rights events held in Illinois is the Illinois Gun Owners Legislative Day or IGOLD. That is the day when gun owners from around the Prairie State converge on Springfield to meet with their legislators gun rights issues. IGOLD 2017 is set for Wednesday, April 5th.

The important thing to remember about Illinois politics is that not all Democrats are anti-gun and not all Republicans are pro-gun. The bill authorizing shall-issue concealed carry was sponsored by Rep. Brandon Phelps (D-Harrisburg) while recently defeated US Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) was relatively anti-rights. Moreover, Gov. Bruce Rauner (R-IL) is relatively pro-gun and neither house of the General Assembly has a super-majority.

With the number of murders in the city of Chicago now topping 750 for the year, I would fully expect some stringent gun control measures to be proposed by Chicagoland politicians. This is where they usually come from. The election of Donald Trump as President has caused the gun prohibitionists like Bloomberg’s Everytown, the Brady Campaign, and Americans for Responsible Solutions to turn their attention on the states. They know they can’t win at the federal level but they have had some success at the state level as can be seen by the passage of gun control referenda in Washington State, Nevada, and California.

If you live in Illinois and are a gun owner, please try to clear your calendar so that you can make the trip to Springfield. Your rights may just well depend upon it.

Thousands of Second Amendment Supporters Will March on the Capitol in Springfield, IL!


Illinois Gun Owner Lobby Day

Wed. April 5, 2017
Prairie Capital Convention Center
Springfield, IL
Mark this important date on your calendar.  If you need
to reserve a vacation day before the end of the year –
several pro-Second Amendment legislators lost in the recent statewide
election, we will have an uphill battle when the General Assembly
returns to Springfield for the new session in 2017.  Anti-rights
legislators will be more determined than ever to disarm law-abiding
We know disarming innocent people does not make us safer. We know gun free
zones are killing zones.  It is important we lobby our legislators and
Gov. Rauner.  It is important that we voice our opposition to any
further restrictions on our Second Amendment rights.  It’s important
that we voice our
support for:
  • Less restriction on where we can carry, so we can better protect ourselves and our loved ones.
  • Reducing the cost of concealed carry licenses, which is too high for many to afford.
  • Reciprocity with other states in order to  protect ourselves when we travel in those states.
Even if you have already received your carry license,
this is NOT the time to sit back and become lax! 
who have taken the training and gone through the licensing process are
crucial to the fight and we need you to stand with us and be heard at
Save the date!  Be there!

Your 2017 New Year Assignment!

Your assignment for the New Year is to contact your State Representative and State Senator and express your concerns about: restrictions in the carry law, further attempts to enact firearm/magazine bans,
or attempts to make purchasing, owning, or transporting firearms more
difficult for law abiding citizens.  Contact your state legislators at
the State Capitol and at their home office. 
Don’t know who your state legislators are? 
Find them here:

Even On Memorial Day The Prohibitionists Are At It In Illinois

I got the following alert last night from the Illinois State Rifle Association. It appears that the gun prohibitionists are still at it in their efforts to have state licensing of gun stores in Illinois. This would be over and above what is required by the Gun Control Act of 1968 and BATFE.

They are trying to use an amendment to an environmental protection bill to put gun dealers out of business.

On a positive note, there is an amendment to a crime bill that would allow Illinois residents to own suppressors.

If you are an Illinois resident, call your representatives and senators.

Things are moving swiftly in the Illinois General Assembly as we are down to the last scheduled days.

If you recall HB 1016 with Amendment #6 was voted down on Friday.
It was expected to be called for a vote again today, but that did not happen.
the anti-gunners, the ARS, the Bloomberg Moms and others were combing
the halls today trying to pick up votes for this thinly veiled attempt
at curtailing your Second Amendment rights.

It is expected that it will be called for a House vote again tomorrow.
Yes, you are reading it correctly, the Illinois General Assembly will be in session on Memorial Day.

There is no additional amendment, so there are no witness slips to be filed, but please call your Illinois State Representative and your Illinois State Senator tomorrow urging them not to support HB 1016.

SB 206
206 came out of the House Judiciary Criminal Committee hearing today on
a favorable vote of 9 to 5. It will be back in committee soon to
address the suppressor amendment to the bill, now House Amendment #2. 
This is a bill to allow suppressors in Illinois as long as there is NFA
compliance, and to be able to use them while hunting with long arms.

At this point there is no committee hearing to fill out witness slips for, so please call your Illinois State Representative and your Illinois State Senator to urge their support of SB 206 as amended.  There is a possibility that the bill number may change, so make sure that that your legislators know that you are in favor of suppressors in general.

Here are a couple of quick talking points for suppressors when you call your legislators:

  • They can decrease noise complaints that are increasingly used as an excuse to close lands to hunting.
  • They help prevent hearing loss among those hunting or accompanying.

If you do not know who your Illinois State Legislators are, please use the website of the Illinois State Board of Elections and access their lookup app for elected officials based on your street address and/or 9 digit zip code.

Thank you for giving this your attention during the holiday weekend.

Joining Forces In Illinois

One of the guiding principles of war is the concentration of forces.

To achieve success in war, it is essential to concentrate superior force, moral or material, to that of the enemy at the decisive time and place. Concentration does not necessarily imply a massing of forces, but rather having them so disposed as to be able to unite to deliver the decisive blow when and where required, or to counter the enemy’s threats. Concentration is a matter more of time than of space.

Having fought determined enemies of gun rights for a long time, the Illinois State Rifle Association has learned a thing or two about both strategy and tactics. Thus when I read the release below from ISRA, I shook my head in approval at the wisdom of it.

ISRA and Illinois Carry are joining forces in lobbying the Illinois General Assembly. Dr. Valinda Rowe and her husband Mike Rowe will be the Springfield coordinators for both ISRA and Illinois Carry. This concentration of forces to lobby for gun rights in Illinois will bring a greater focus to both the opportunities and threats facing Illinois gun owners.

Illinois State Rifle Association and IllinoisCarry.com Join Forces!

When the General Assembly returned to session this week, there were two new faces joining the Illinois State Rifle Association team. Valinda Rowe and husband Mike will serve as Springfield Coordinators and lobbyists for both the ISRA and IllinoisCarry.com. It was almost inevitable that the top two Second Amendment organizations in the state should team up to form an even more effective presence in Springfield. The national award winning ISRA and the national award winning grassroots group, IllinoisCarry.com, are joining forces for an even stronger front in the battle for Second Amendment rights for Illinois citizens. The two organizations represent nearly 40,000 gun owners in the State of Illinois.

ISRA President Don Moran, “We have worked closely with Valinda and Mike over the past decade, our parallel cases, IC / SAF’s Moore v Madigan and NRA / ISRA’s Sheppard v Madigan being the straw that broke the camel’s back in moving CCL forward in Illinois. It’s been a partnership for some time and our codifying it has been long overdue. The ISRA welcomes Valinda and Mike on board and we look forward to continuing to fight together for firearms rights in Illinois for years to come.” ISRA Executive Director Richard Pearson, “I am pleased that the ISRA and IllinoisCarry are working together. The gun owners of this state will be well represented by this partnership.”

Valinda, spokesperson for IllinoisCarry and her husband, Mike, are excited about their new role in Springfield, “We believe this partnership will benefit both organizations and help each one to be better, stronger, and more efficient in many ways. We have always enjoyed working alongside our friends in the ISRA and we are excited to see that relationship expand. It is our hope to not only strengthen the ISRA’s presence in Springfield but to also increase the overall presence of all Second Amendment supporters.”

Correction: I incorrectly referred to Valinda Rowe as Dr. Valinda Rowe. I mixed Valinda’s credentials up with those of another stalwart in the fight for concealed carry in Illinois – Dr. Paula Bratich DVM.

An Alert For The Chicagoland Area

The Demanding Mommies are never satisfied and, unfortunately, never give up. Not happy that the Niles (IL) Planning Board turned them down regarding a gun store in Niles, they are taking their fight to the Niles Village Council.

They are pushing the Niles Village Council to turn down the application at their July 22nd meeting. The Illinois State Rifle Association has issued an alert for gun rights supporters in the Chicagoland area. They are asking people to attend the meeting and to make sure that the Village Council doesn’t forbid the lawful commerce in firearms.

The alert is below:



The Niles Village Council will soon take a final vote on whether to allow a gun shop and pistol range to open in the village. The application for the permit to open the range was voted on earlier this summer and approved by the Planning Board by a 6:1 vote.

However, gun control extremists led by the BLOOMBERG MOMS convinced the village council to force the Planning Board to take a second vote on the proposal. The objective of the BLOOMBERG MOMS was to have the gun shop and range SHUT DOWN IN COMMITTEE.

The second vote of the Planning Board on July 7th found in favor of the shop and range by a 5:2 margin. The BLOOMBERG MOMS browbeat a female board member into voting against gun rights.


The supporters of the gun shop and pistol range desperately need your support to help push this proposal through the Village Board. Lawful gun owners cannot allow the BLOOMBERG MOMS to undermine lawful commerce in firearms or the operation of safe shooting facilities.


1. Attend the Niles Village Council meeting and enthusiastically defend your right to keep and bear arms.
2. Post this alert to any and all Internet bulletin boards or blogs to which you belong.
3. Pass this alert on to all your gun owning friends and relatives – tell them to go to Niles also.

WHAT: Niles Illinois Village Council Meeting

WHEN: Tuesday, 22 July 2014, 7 PM (be there at 6:15 to get a good seat)

WHERE: Niles Council Chambers, 1000 Civic Center Drive, Niles, IL


ISRA – The Heat Will Be On This Week

The Illinois State Rifle Association issued an alert this afternoon regarding moves by the gun prohibitionists in the Illinois General Assembly. They feel the anti’s will make some moves this week and they are asking Illinois residents to contact their state senators and representatives.

As June 9th grows nearer, a lot of attention will be focused on the General Assembly’s efforts to comply with the court order to enact concealed carry. As important as passing shall-issue concealed carry is, gun owners should not let the carry issue distract them from other efforts already underway to diminish their constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Those of you who have been following the topic of gun control this year know that there are some key items on the gun-grabbers’ legislative wish list. Among the crown jewels are the ban and confiscation of semiautomatic rifles, pistols and shotguns; the ban and confiscation of standard capacity magazines; the registration of lawful gun owners; and the mandatory reporting of lost and stolen firearms. The gun controllers claim that these measures are necessary to protect public safety. Of course, firearm owners know that these measures are designed strictly for the purpose of punishing people who dare to own a gun.

A glimpse of what we may soon be facing was provided by a front-page feature in the latest Sunday edition of the Chicago Tribune. In that story, we learned of a single mom so desperate for cash that she volunteered to become a straw purchaser for hardened criminals who were prohibited from purchasing firearms. She was eventually caught and is now serving a multi-year prison term for her misdeeds.

As far as gun owners are concerned, the hapless straw purchaser is right where she belongs jail. Interestingly, the author of the piece spins the story to suggest that the woman is in jail not because of her decision to commit crimes, but because the “gun lobby” has fought against legislation supposedly designed to combat straw-purchasing. Once again, the notion is put forth that muggers, mass murderers, and straw purchasers only commit crimes because the “gun lobby” lets them. In this case, it’s gun owners’ fault that this mom is in jail rather at than home with her kids.

In short, it seems that the purpose of the straw purchase story is to promote legislation requiring gun owners to report “lost or stolen” firearms to the police within a short time of them being lost or stolen. As is often the case, such legislation may sound good on the surface. But, the devil is in the details, and those details place an undue burden on firearm owners. Such proposals may be fine in theory, but problematic in practice.

So, here is what you need to do to help ensure passage of shall-issue concealed carry and prevent passage of extremist gun control proposals:

1. Call your State Representative and your State Senator. Politely tell the person who answers the phone that you are a law-abiding Illinois firearm owner and that you would like the senator or representative to vote for “shall-issue” concealed carry and vote against “may-issue” concealed carry. Likewise, advise the person that you oppose any proposal that would diminish your right to keep and bear arms and expect the legislator to oppose such measures as well. If you do not know who your representative or senator is, the Illinois State Board of Elections has an interactive search page here:www.elections.state.il.us/DistrictLocator/DistrictOfficialSearchByAddress.aspx

If you already know who your legislators are and just need the contact info, you can find that here: www.ilga.gov/house/. and here: www.ilga.gov/senate/.

2. Pass this alert on to your friends and family and ask them to make calls as well.

3. Post this alert to any and all Internet blogs or bulletin boards to which you belong.

FURTHER ACTION The Will County Board will vote on a resolution in favor of Concealed Carry this coming Thursday at 9:30 in the Will County Office Building, 2nd Floor, 302 N. Chicago Avenue, Joliet. It’s important that firearm owners show up for the vote to show their support for the measure. Plan on being there at 9:00 AM so that you can get a seat.