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Thread: VCDL's 2007-2008 legislative agenda

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    I had a thought after reading another post and thought I'd solicit some feedback. VCDL has the opportunity and the need to go on the offensive this year pushing bills in the General Assembly.

    VCDL last year fought and won by killing a bill that would enable you to be detained and arrested for most misdemeanors. It was their first foray into a piece of legislation not strictly about firearms and firearms rights but it was an important one.

    Instead ofhaving just a strictlypro-gun platform(nothing wrong there)what do you think about them having a go at stealing some of the "public safety" thunder from the anti's.

    As such do you all think it would be prudent to suggest to VCDL to push for the introduction of a bill to stiffen the existing penalties for all violent crimes whether a firearm is used or not.

    Would pushing a "public safety" bill putting criminals away for longer sentences be beneficial. Would A gun rights group pushing an bill focused on protecting the "children" from the people they need protection from instead of you and I be a media alternative to the anti's clamoring for more gun control to make the "children" safer?

    We all know its not the gun that is the problem its thecriminal with his finger on the trigger. So would attempting tofocus the media attention on the criminal instead of the gun be futile or worthwhile?

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    Campaign Veteran roscoe13's Avatar
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    I think pushing a bill for longer sentences for violent criminals would be a great idea. Of course, with prisons overcrowded with people convicted of victimless crimes, longer sentences might not actually result in violent criminals spending any more time behind bars...
    "The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that's good." - George Washington

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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    While it might not be a bad idea, my preference would be for VCDL to focus on what they're best at -- firearms laws at the state and local levels.

    I've been around the military too long to be fond of "mission creep".
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    Tess wrote:
    While it might not be a bad idea, my preference would be for VCDL to focus on what they're best at -- firearms laws at the state and local levels.

    I've been around the military too long to be fond of "mission creep".
    But would it be "mission creep"? going after criminals would be protecting our gun rights and pull the rug out from underneath the anti's who want our guns because of what the criminal element does with them.

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    roscoe13 wrote:
    I think pushing a bill for longer sentences for violent criminals would be a great idea. Of course, with prisons overcrowded with people convicted of victimless crimes, longer sentences might not actually result in violent criminals spending any more time behind bars...
    really not going to debate victimless crimes, i realize that not every kid who smokes a joint is going to steal your tv set. but its naive to call drug crimes victimless if that is what you are refering to.

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    67GT390FB wrote:
    roscoe13 wrote:
    I think pushing a bill for longer sentences for violent criminals would be a great idea. Of course, with prisons overcrowded with people convicted of victimless crimes, longer sentences might not actually result in violent criminals spending any more time behind bars...
    really not going to debate victimless crimes, i realize that not every kid who smokes a joint is going to steal your tv set. but its naive to call drug crimes victimless if that is what you are refering to.
    Who is the victim of the drug crime? The user?

    Marijuana doesn't hurt people, there are all kinds of people winding up in prision on some lame-o pot charges. Legalize it, the state will get all the tax money it could ever possibly need, and a lot of dealers will be out of business, then the cops might have some time to do something constructive.



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    Regular Member ChinChin's Avatar
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    I would like to see VCDL focus LESS on hunting and sports shooting laws, and focus more on laws that impact ALL locations of VA.

    The potential of making an ordinance that would not allow a shooting range to be in operation in a southern rural Virginia county impacts only that particular region, whereas the ability to carry concealed in a restaurant that serves alcohol impact the entire commonwealth.

    Less micro, more macro.


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    openryan wrote:
    67GT390FB wrote:
    roscoe13 wrote:
    I think pushing a bill for longer sentences for violent criminals would be a great idea. Of course, with prisons overcrowded with people convicted of victimless crimes, longer sentences might not actually result in violent criminals spending any more time behind bars...
    really not going to debate victimless crimes, i realize that not every kid who smokes a joint is going to steal your tv set. but its naive to call drug crimes victimless if that is what you are refering to.
    Who is the victim of the drug crime? The user?

    Marijuana doesn't hurt people, there are all kinds of people winding up in prision on some lame-o pot charges. Legalize it, the state will get all the tax money it could ever possibly need, and a lot of dealers will be out of business, then the cops might have some time to do something constructive.

    Like i said not going to debate that here start a new topic if you want to discuss "victimless" crimes.

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    ChinChin wrote:
    I would like to see VCDL focus LESS on hunting and sports shooting laws, and focus more on laws that impact ALL locations of VA.

    The potential of making an ordinance that would not allow a shooting range to be in operation in a southern rural Virginia county impacts only that particular region, whereas the ability to carry concealed in a restaurant that serves alcohol impact the entire commonwealth.

    Less micro, more macro.

    My answer to that is that in this day and age supporting hunting and sports shooting is macro. The more prevalent those two items are the more mainstream firearms become and the better it is for all of us in the firearms community. The silly restraunt ban is something that needs to change definitely.

    For example there are around 150,000 CHP issued in VA while there are around 300,000 hunting licenses sold every year(two most recent years i was able to get data on were 2002 and 2003 314,000 and 305,000 respectively)

    that is twice the number of firearms owners and does not include those who do not require a license to hunt. By supporting hunting initiatives VCDL greatly expands its voting base.





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    There are a million good ideas that VCDL could support publicly. Most of us would agree about most of them. But it wouldn't take long for VCDL to lose its focus (if we're lucky) or eventually fall apart due to squabbling (if we're unlucky). The topic of "Victimless crimes" is but one example. I like working with all of you to support gun rights in Virginia. I might feel differently if I had to spend time arguing over victimless crimes when we could be working together to support the gun rights of law-abiding Virginians.

    As far as "macro" or "micro" - I like the focus exactly as it is: on issues involving the whole state and smaller communities. It's worked for VCDL so far, and there seems to be a good mix of the two types of issues. I like the idea of local politicians who are relatively neutral or "pragmatic" on gun issues wondering what risks they are taking with their political future when they consider anti-gun measures or practices. Todays local councilwoman may be tomorrows Lt. Governor, and it is good to "teach" politicians at the entry level in Virginia about the gun communities collective power.

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    ChinChin wrote:
    I would like to see VCDL focus LESS on hunting and sports shooting laws, and focus more on laws that impact ALL locations of VA.

    The potential of making an ordinance that would not allow a shooting range to be in operation in a southern rural Virginia county impacts only that particular region, whereas the ability to carry concealed in a restaurant that serves alcohol impact the entire commonwealth.

    Less micro, more macro.

    First off, localities like to copy each other. It is easier and cheaper to copy verbiage from another place's ordinance -- especially on contentious issues. If "ordinance X" passes in one locality, other localities will copy it and try to enact it with statements like "this is the same ordinance that XXX has on their books." So, defeating an ordinance in one location does help on a larger scale.

    Second, VCDL has pushed to remove the restaurant ban for several years. Each year, the same basic subcommittee kills it. That is partly why VCDL asked we contact our state senator and demand a new leader of the Republican caucus.
    ---

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    rlh2005 wrote:
    First off, localities like to copy each other. It is easier and cheaper to copy verbiage from another place's ordinance -- especially on contentious issues. If "ordinance X" passes in one locality, other localities will copy it and try to enact it with statements like "this is the same ordinance that XXX has on their books." So, defeating an ordinance in one location does help on a larger scale.

    Second, VCDL has pushed to remove the restaurant ban for several years. Each year, the same basic subcommittee kills it. That is partly why VCDL asked we contact our state senator and demand a new leader of the Republican caucus.
    Northern Virginia (FFX county)has but a scant few "open air" firing ranges, I know of only 1. So I disagree that taking away an open air firing range in Dinwittle county will prompt FFX county to do the same, or VA beach. Not every county has open-air firing ranges, or has hunting where we need to worry about firing across a road or street.It is strictly a locality issue, rather then a commonwealth issue.

    And as for the restaurant ban, I recall last year reading one mention of it in a slew of overall items to be addressed, whereas open air ranges, hunting regulations and the like got seemingly direct and intense coverage. Unless there was work being done behind the scenes and nobody reported on it, the issue took a backseat to more "rural" concerns.

    If VCDL desires to be the lobbyist for the sportsman and farmer, that's all well and good, but it doesn't aid the more urban and suburban members which I would imagine comprise the lionshare of VCDL membership. Issues such as on-school carry, the restaurant ban, courthouse carry, Library carry affect the entire commonwealth as every county has these factors.

    I, Mrs. ChinChin and several other likeminded individuals in NOVA I know have yet to renew our VCDL membership as we see the organization becoming more of the rural dweller’s advocate rather than the advocate of the entire commonwealth, representing both Urban AND Rural. I was tempted this past weekend to renew my membership when I saw the VCDL booth at the Chantilly gunshow near the snackbar, but wanted to wait until I saw what the ultimate direction of the group would be and would they continue to operate in a micro capacity.


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    I'll concede that an item in Dinwiddie County may not cause a ripple in Fairfax County. However, that same item happening in Prince William or Loudon county likely will cause a ripple in Fairfax. And the reverse is more likely.

    Regarding the restaurant ban, nobody introduced a bill to repeal it in 2007. It would have been wasted energy to work on the restaurant ban since a bill was not introduced before the deadline. Yes, it should be mentioned and staged for 2008 but bills that were introduced were more important at that point.

    A big thing to remember is VCDL is an all volunteer, grassroots organization and not a lobbying firm. VCDL gets information out to it members on gun related issues and asks them to hammer the senators and delegates.

    I suggest you have a frank conversation about your concerns with VCDL leadership.
    ---

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    ChinChin wrote:
    I, Mrs. ChinChin and several other likeminded individuals in NOVA I know have yet to renew our VCDL membership as we see the organization becoming more of the rural dweller’s advocate rather than the advocate of the entire commonwealth, representing both Urban AND Rural. I was tempted this past weekend to renew my membership when I saw the VCDL booth at the Chantilly gunshow near the snackbar, but wanted to wait until I saw what the ultimate direction of the group would be and would they continue to operate in a micro capacity.

    Huh? :what:

    You would think that as President I would be the first to know if VCDL was pushing a rural dweller's agenda, without having to learn about it at OCDO!

    We put out fires wherever they occur, rural or urban. Local problems require solutions and I can say that we have made lots of friends by stepping into local situations and fixing them. Other groups are but rarlely venturing into such things.

    If it's happening in YOUR backyard :shock:, you would probably be glad someone can come help, too. Local government can rob you of your rights just as fast or faster than state government. Thanks to the preemption bill put in for VCDL in 2004, most local gun control is gone, but there are still local problems and they affect people like you and I. From judges who want to deny permits without any legal basis, to localites trying to ignore preemption.

    We have fought battles recently in rural Wythe county, BUT also in urban Norfolk.

    We are working on getting bills introduced in the General Assembly in January - quite a few, actually. And all of them benefit gun owners across the state.

    Rights are not a 'we' vs 'them' or a 'micro' vs 'macro' item. We are all freedom-loving Americans and we need to stand up with each other to protect our RKBA WHEREVER it is in jeopardy or pay the penalty if we don't.



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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    If VCDL desires to be the lobbyist for the sportsman and farmer, that's all well and good, but it doesn't aid the more urban and suburban members which I would imagine comprise the lionshare of VCDL membership. Issues such as on-school carry, the restaurant ban, courthouse carry, Library carry affect the entire commonwealth as every county has these factors.
    You'll see VCDL step up to the plate as quickly in Dinwiddie as in Norfolk, thankfully.

    They have a remarkable focus and an ability to say "Where you may think you're stopping a person (or a business), we're here to show you're stomping on thousands throughout the Commonwealth."

    VCDL bringing its 5000+ members' voices to small or large localities makes a big difference.
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.

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    VApatriot wrote:
    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.
    We need to put in something that has a chance of passing, hence the CHP holder exemption. That will be a plenty big enough fight.

    If we eventually get VT or AK type laws, we will have to fix a lot of things.

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    VApatriot wrote:
    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.
    that is why we in va would most likely press for alaska style laws where a permit is not required but one could be issued upon your request for use in other states which have permits and require them.

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    67GT390FB wrote:
    VApatriot wrote:
    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.
    that is why we in va would most likely press for alaska style laws where a permit is not required but one could be issued upon your request for use in other states which have permits and require them.
    Yes - I agree with 67GT390FB on this. There will most likely be a few places where only permit holders will be able to carry and colleges could be one of them.

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    VA should be utilizing the laws we have on hands to prosecute criminals. I have always stood for putting violent people in jail for a long time, esp those that commit violent crime with a firearm.

    Use the laws, don't create new ones.

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    VCDL President wrote:
    67GT390FB wrote:
    VApatriot wrote:
    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.
    that is why we in va would most likely press for alaska style laws where a permit is not required but one could be issued upon your request for use in other states which have permits and require them.
    Yes - I agree with 67GT390FB on this. There will most likely be a few places where only permit holders will be able to carry and colleges could be one of them.
    But why should that be? It doesn't make much sense to require CHPs anywhere in the first place.

    Having a law that says you must have a CHP to carry at curtain places isn't much different than making laws that say youmay notcarry at all at other place. Those who mean to do harm to others will carry with or without completebansat curtainplaces, and they will carry with or without apermit at places that require permits. So why should we punish those who do not wish to apply to the government for a permit, those who are waiting for their application to be processedor those who do not qualify for a permit do to their age?

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    VApatriot wrote:
    VCDL President wrote:
    67GT390FB wrote:
    VApatriot wrote:
    As for the 2008 legislative agenda, I have one major concern. Almost for sure someone will introducea bill to allow students and facultyat state funded colleges and universitiesto carry at their campuses without having to worry about receivingadministrative punishments. However, most all the talk I have heard on the subject has centered around only exempting those who have CHPs.

    Wouldn't it be much better to form a bill so that it merely forces state funded institutions tochange their policies toconform with the law throughout the Commonwealth? This would then allow those who do not have CHPs the chance to defend themselves as well.

    Changing the law to only exempt a certain group of people further promotes the idea that self-defence is not a natural right of man but a privilege you must ask the government for. Furthermore, what ifwe finally get thelaw changed so that CHPs are no longer issued, and we can CC freely like in Vermont. If you have to have a CHP to carry at a college, and they are no longer issued, then we would be right back to where we are now.
    that is why we in va would most likely press for alaska style laws where a permit is not required but one could be issued upon your request for use in other states which have permits and require them.
    Yes - I agree with 67GT390FB on this. There will most likely be a few places where only permit holders will be able to carry and colleges could be one of them.
    But why should that be? It doesn't make much sense to require CHPs anywhere in the first place.

    Having a law that says you must have a CHP to carry at curtain places isn't much different than making laws that say youmay notcarry at all at other place. Those who mean to do harm to others will carry with or without completebansat curtainplaces, and they will carry with or without apermit at places that require permits. So why should we punish those who do not wish to apply to the government for a permit, those who are waiting for their application to be processedor those who do not qualify for a permit do to their age?
    My question would be, "why should we punish those who could be protected now with their CHP while we wait for everyone to be able to carry on campus?"

    It's called baby steps and sometimes there isn't a second step. Usually there is, but time will tell.

    Our first preemption bill, that passed in 2003, preempted laws for CHP holders only. There was moaning and groaning about that from some people. VCDL was accused by one individual of being anti-gun because we didn't go for the whole enchilada at once and had "abandoned" everyone else.

    We told everyone to be patient and the next year we put in a full repeal and got it.

    We were happy that at least over 100,000 people were living under preemption for that year as opposed to no one. The next year, 7,000,000 people were living under preemption.

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    "The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."

    If you take an all or nothing position, you may get just that - nothing.

    VCDL has worked tirelessly to put the citizens of Virginia in the best possible position. Compromise is not always a bad word, especially when it yields progress. More work to be done? You bet there is but there has been progress.

    Yata hey
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    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    VCDL President wrote:
    We need to put in something that has a chance of passing, hence the CHP holder exemption. That will be a plenty big enough fight.

    If we eventually get VT or AK type laws, we will have to fix a lot of things.
    VCDL has a legislative Candidate Survey. I would strongly suggest that all of the issues on the survey should be brought forward. If VCDL as not serious about these issues, then why put them in the survey?

    My recommended agenda, lifted from the VCDL survey:

    Repeal the "restaurant ban"

    Recognize all other states' concealed carry permits

    Repeal the fingerprint language in Virginia's concealed handgun law

    Allow concealed handgun permit holders to have a gun on their person while on school grounds

    Prevent public colleges and universities from penalizing students with concealed handgun permits from carrying on campus

    Alaska-style carry

    Penalize localities that enforce gun bans in violation of state law

    Repeal Virginia's "one-gun-a-month" rationing law

    Castle Doctrine: homeowners immunity from criminal prosecution and civil suit if they use a firearm in their own home to protect themselves or their families from a violent intruder

    Over turn the GAB gun ban
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

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    PVC, VCDL, and VCDL-PAC have been the most effective gun rights group in the Commonwealth for years. I have been a member since 2003 and will continue to be one.

    For rural members only? Norfolk, Staunton and Manassas incidents rig a bell?

    Chinchin,

    If VCDL is not working to suit you start your own group and show us the way to the promised land. Action requires much more effort than complaining.

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