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Thread: What to say to lawmakers

  1. #1
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    Hey all,

    What should be included in a letter asking California government to reform open carry laws as well as in regards to CCW reform?

    I am not trying to write a ballot initiation but just to start writing the representatives.

    Thanks soo much for any advice.

  2. #2
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    avdrummerboy wrote:
    Hey all,

    What should be included in a letter asking California government to reform open carry laws as well as in regards to CCW reform?

    I am not trying to write a ballot initiation but just to start writing the representatives.

    Thanks soo much for any advice.
    Might be better if you posted in the CA forum so you avoid out-of-staters like me answering your question.

    What do you want - shall issue? Tell them why and why there will not be blood in the streets, shootouts at the drive-thru prayer window, etc.

    stay safe.

    skidmark
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

  3. #3
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    This is the letter I wrote to Senator Rhonda Storms (R. - FL).

    Although it's mainly aimed at OC, feel free to use some of it.

    Dear Senator Storms,

    I would like to share my views in regards to the open-carry of handguns in the State of Florida. In additionthe members of OpenCarry.org haveraised some excellent points that I will also include.

    While Florida is by no means as restrictive upon private handgun ownership as, say, California or Washington DC, it is an unwarranted restriction placed upon Florida's citizens who still cannot lawfully open-carry their legally-owned handguns even with a concealed weapons permit; in our vehicles or on our persons, unless said firearm is securely cased/locked/wrapped & unloaded.
    Due to car-jackings and street robbery, not being able to adequately & lawfully arm ourselves against those who obey no law is simply increasing the likelyhood of being victimized. The July 1st change in Florida firearms statute allowing employees to keep firearms locked in their vehicles on the grounds of their employer's business. This law is simply a paper-tiger, as the handgun-owner must still maintain a CWP to transport their firearm in their vehicle, and the handgun must still be encased and not readily available for immediate use.

    While I am still a citizen of Florida, I live in Colorado, and Colorado law considers a citizen's vehicle as an extension of their house. And as such, it is not required that a handgun owner maintain a CWP to keep their handgun in their vehicle; and it does not need to be cased, unloaded, and beyond easy reach of the driver. Colorado law-enforcement is well aware of this law, and Colorado citizens who carry their handguns in their vehicles in such a manner are always mindful that if a traffic-stop is initiated, it is imperative that they announce the presence of the handgun to the officer, and to keep their hands well away from the firearm until the officer has secured the handgun or ascertained that there is no threat.

    To date, I have found no public records of any accidental shootings by an on-duty law-enforcement officer as the result of a law-abiding citizen being stopped with a legally owned handgun in the vehicle.

    In States with "May-Issue" concealed-weapon permit statutes, and even in "Shall-Issue" States, there's no guarantee that a concealed-weapons permit will be granted.

    There are many chief law-enforcement officers (Sheriffs, State Patrol Officers) who will dismiss CWP applications out-of-hand due to their own political dislike concerning citizens owning & carrying handguns for self-defense (or simple prejudice against race or economic status), rather than dismissing a CWP application due to lawful mitigating factors; such as conviction/arrests for domestic abuse, drug charges, vandalisim, DUI/DWI, assault (simple or otherwise), theft (grand or otherwise), etc. Many LEOs see citizens who carry their own handguns as potential threats (and by their own admittance, threats to the officer's force supremacy).

    I have personally found admittances to as much by law-enforcement officers on various online Law-Enforcement-Only message forums (Real Police - Law Enforcement Resource, & Officer.com are just two).

    This is highly regrettable, as it is our Constitutional Right to Keep & Bear arms, with reasonable restrictions & training, of course. Lawfully permitted open-carry of handguns will again afford those citizens (like myself) who cannot afford the cost & or meet the demands of prejudicial enforcement officials to obtain a CWP. And in regards to citizens open carrying their handguns while conducting their day-to-day business/errands, there is a growing movement amongst law-abiding gun-owners that are OC'ing on a regular basis. In an emergency, it may take LEOs up to 15-20 minutes to arrive, yet it takes only seconds for a rape, aggravated assault, or robbery to take place.
    And in any case, the Supreme Court ruled in Warren vs. DC. that "The fundamental principle of American law that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any individual citizen." This supposition has been upheld by many courts in other States:
    ~ Bower v. DeVito (1982) 686 F.2d 616
    ~ Calgorides v. Mobile (1985) 475 So.2d 560
    ~ Warren v. District of Columbia (1983) 444 A.2d 1
    ~ Morgan v. District of Columbia (1983) 469 A.2d 1306
    ~ Sapp v. Tallahassee (1977) 348 So.2d 363, cert.denied 354 So.2d 985
    ~ Keane v. Chicago (1968) 98 Ill.App.2d 460, 240 N.E.2d 321
    ~ Jamison v. Chicago (1977) 48 Ill.3d 567
    ~ Simpson's Food Fair v. Evansville 272 N.E. 2d 871
    ~ Silver v. Minneapolis (1969)) 170 N.W.2d 206

    Citizens, openly armed or carrying concealed, can make a huge difference when seconds count.

    Many handgun-owners feel that open-carry is a distinct deterrent against criminals, and it has been proven in other States (such as Colorado) that law-abiding citizens who are allowed by law to open-carry without strict & expensive licensing are not a risk to the general public. In many cases (such as in my own) handgun-owners cannot afford the cost in time & money to apply for a CWP, and lawful open-carry is a safe & effective way for citizens to afford themselves & their families the protection that we are Constitutionally entitled to. Law-enforcement by & large are aware of the legality of open carry, and we that OC are cognizant of signage on businesses & buildings prohibiting the open-carry of firearms onto the premises.

    Because we are allowed to OC our handguns legally, there are certainly many responsibilities that we as handgun-carriers must be aware of. Situational awareness is key, mainly to avoid a criminal from obtaining the handgun, even though retention holsters are extremely effective in preventing unauthorized access to a citizen's sidearm. But the main burden placed upon any handgun owner in public is the decision on whether to use deadly-force or not in the face of violent crime. This is being hotly debated amongst handgun owners nationwide, but the consensus is that deadly-force is NOT to be used unless all other options to protect life & limb have failed.

    Gun-owners who choose to carry in public are amongst some of the most responsible and level-headed people our nation has to offer;
    An openly armed citizen present at a location chosen by a madman may completely deter the criminal with nefarious intent; or if the OC'ing citizen is not noticed beforehand, thwart the crime if it proceeds. Consider Virginia Tech, or the shooting rampage in KilleenTexas at the Luby's Cafeteria which left 24 dead. While a majority of schools are still "Gun-Free Zones" (?!), had Texas passed legislation allowing the open-carry of firearms, the woman who had been forced by law to leave her handgun inside her vehicle, very well might've carried her sidearm into the Luby's; and the 24 victims would've had a much greater chance at survival due to the presence of a single lawfully armed citizen.

    The State of Florida should be greatly concerned with allowing its' citizens the tools to protect themselves & their families against criminals who follow no laws, especially laws regarding firearms. Keeping law-abiding citizens from maintaining a handgun at the ready in their vehicles only increases the likelyhood that they'll become victims of a vehicular robbery/car-jacking, thereby increasing the burden upon overworked law-enforcement.
    And not allowing less economically advantaged women who must walk, utilize mass-transit, or commute alone to/from work the means to open-carry a handgun in their vehicle or on their person marks them as targets for sexual predators.
    I can't emphasize enough the cost and wait time it takes to obtain a CWP. Especially in the case of a woman who is the victim of an active stalker; scraping enough money to buy a handgun is only half the battle. Waiting for approval for a CWP before she can actually carry her handgun may become a death/rape sentence. However, a woman who has legally bought a handgun and may immediately begin to carry it openly during her daily life is exponentially more effective than a restraining order, cell-phone, alarm whistle/device, or pepper spray..... especially in this day & age of the meth-addict, upon whom pepper-spray/mace is little more than an irritant.

    Yet anti-gun proponents insist that victims of crime call law-enforcement after simply complying with a criminal(s) demands, and hope that they are left alone once said criminal(s) obtain the valuables they desire. At that point, the anti-gun proponents produce statistics showing that a majority of robbery victims will be able to walk away and identify the criminal(s) in a line-up once they're apprehended by police. And that's assuming the perpetrator only has simple robbery on their mind(s). If the victim is a woman, the brutal reality of the crime is more often quite tragic. Violent criminals with 2 or more strikes, or are already wanted by police for previous crimes, will have no compunctions about disposing of victims or witnesses. In the case of an ultra-violent crime where only seconds matter between life & death, waiting for the police to arrive will only result in them having to mop up, possibly with a medical examiner in tow.

    This advocation of the victim-mentality has been getting people robbed, beaten, & murdered.

    While I am a strong proponent in the passing of legislation in Florida allowing for the legal open-carry of handguns in vehicles & on our persons, I also strongly believe that there should be mandatory firearms safety classes taught to all potential handgun buyers. There would be absolutely no shortage of volunteer instructors for such a program, and funding could be had from the fines usually paid by convicted DUI & domestic abuse criminals. I myself would love to volunteer for such a program & teach others how to safely handle a handgun; how to work carrying a handgun into day-to-day life; how to correctly assess a threat and level of response; and most of all, the responsibility one must shoulder when carrying a handgun and possibly using it to take a life while protecting self, family, and other defenseless innocents against a dangerous assailant.

    Many opponents to open-carry of handguns insist that doing so is the same as painting a giant target on the OC'ing citizen, and that it would be a simple thing to disarm the OC'ing citizen, thereby endangering others nearby. This couldn't be any farther from the truth. Inmates interviewed have stated overwhelmingly that they will always target victims who appear to be unarmed & unaware of their surroundings; i.e. occupied with an iPod, cellphone, newspaper, map, etc. Armed citizens who have their wits about them are situationally aware and can generally notice individuals with evil intent. I know not a single person who will go out in public with their handgun and be blaise about it; they are fully aware of the gravitas carried with their handgun, and are watchful of others and their surroundings.

    In closing, I believe that Senator Storms should look into changing Florida's restriction on the open-carry of handguns. Giving Floridians the option of doing so will increase their ability to exercise their Constitutional Right, and give them the increased means to protect their own, and those who are unable to protect themselves.... as the police will not always be able or inclined to do. Contrary to the anti-gun lobby, legalizing open-carry of handguns by law-abiding citizens will not result in a return to the "Wild West". Rather, that we can openly exercise our Constitutional Right and better protect ourselves and our community through deterrence, and our refusal to allow ourselves to become victims or bow to draconian firearms restrictions; we will show the Nation that Florida is intent on upholding the ideals our Founding Fathers held dear and that criminals will find no easy marks here.


    Thank you for your service to America and the citizens of Florida, and I look forward to hearing any thoughts you may have on this important issue.

    Respectfully,

    .........

  4. #4
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    To me it doesn't matter what state you are from. I just know that sitting and ******* and moaning won't get us anywhere in CA. Thanks for the responses.

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    avdrummerboy wrote:
    To me it doesn't matter what state you are from. I just know that sitting and ******* and moaning won't get us anywhere in CA. Thanks for the responses.
    That's a good attitude to take.

    Unfortuantely, it may be too early to try anything from the top-down. It may be more useful to attract attention at the bottom, OCing when/where/how you can do it, and just get more people interested in it. Then start writing letters when you have thousands of people who will join you.

  6. #6
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    avdrummerboy wrote:
    Hey all,

    What should be included in a letter asking California government to reform open carry laws as well as in regards to CCW reform?

    I am not trying to write a ballot initiation but just to start writing the representatives.

    Thanks soo much for any advice.
    avdrummerboy wrote:
    To me it doesn't matter what state you are from. I just know that sitting and ******* and moaning won't get us anywhere in CA. Thanks for the responses.
    Then why even bother starting this thread?

    I thought that the Congresswoman I wrote would never read, much less reply to, my letters that I've written..... but lo & behold, I actually have a running correspondence with her.

    Believe it or not, writing letters to our lawmakers isn't a total exercise in futility. I've written to many lawmakers, and most don't even send back a canned "thank-you". But write enough of them & write often, and chances are that you'll eventually get through (even in CA), which is better than just sitting put and complaining. It's theirpart of their job-description to listen to their constituency.... you just gotta seek out the ones thatactually do so and still give-a-damn.

  7. #7
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    Just wrote Jerry Lewis. Hope to at least get a response, and I'm not just spitting in the ocean.

  8. #8
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    California will be won in the courts. Don't waste the bandwidth on the legislature thinking reason will sway.Limited Government and Constitutional Law are not to be found in any Sacramento dictionary (There is an ordinance against sanity up there).

  9. #9
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    skidmark wrote:
    avdrummerboy wrote:
    Hey all,

    What should be included in a letter asking California government to reform open carry laws as well as in regards to CCW reform?

    I am not trying to write a ballot initiation but just to start writing the representatives.

    Thanks soo much for any advice.
    Might be better if you posted in the CA forum so you avoid out-of-staters like me answering your question.

    What do you want - shall issue? Tell them why and why there will not be blood in the streets, shootouts at the drive-thru prayer window, etc.

    stay safe.

    skidmark
    Wow. the first time I read that, it almost looked like a threat.

    Yeah, pass Shall-Issue CCW... Why? If you don't wantblood in the streets... :shock:

    ...You can catch more flies with honey, but why not just kill 'em?...
    ...Orygunner...

  10. #10
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Orygunner wrote:
    Wow. the first time I read that, it almost looked like a threat.

    Yeah, pass Shall-Issue CCW... Why? If you don't wantblood in the streets... :shock:

    ...You can catch more flies with honey, but why not just kill 'em?...
    ...Orygunner...
    Now, Orygunner -

    You should know that is in notsocially appropriateto make threats.

    After reading & thinking about your comment, it came to my mind that Shall Issue laws may somehow contain a fatal flaw. All the hysterics that goes on when such legislation is introduced seems to be that passage of Shall Issue will absolutely, unconditionally, positively guarantee the streets running red with blood -- and then once the legislation gets passed the predictions fail to materialize.

    I'm still trying to figure out where the flaw is, but there must be one there that somehow prevents the catastrophic flood of hemoglobin. How could al of those people - some of whom were experts in their fields - be so wrong about their predictions? Their track record makes the TV weatherman look like he ought to be placing bets in Vegas.:shock:

    stay safe.

    skidmark
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

  11. #11
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    skidmark wrote:
    Orygunner wrote:
    Wow. the first time I read that, it almost looked like a threat.

    Yeah, pass Shall-Issue CCW... Why? If you don't wantblood in the streets... :shock:

    ...You can catch more flies with honey, but why not just kill 'em?...
    ...Orygunner...
    Now, Orygunner -

    You should know that is in notsocially appropriateto make threats.

    After reading & thinking about your comment, it came to my mind that Shall Issue laws may somehow contain a fatal flaw. All the hysterics that goes on when such legislation is introduced seems to be that passage of Shall Issue will absolutely, unconditionally, positively guarantee the streets running red with blood -- and then once the legislation gets passed the predictions fail to materialize.

    I'm still trying to figure out where the flaw is, but there must be one there that somehow prevents the catastrophic flood of hemoglobin. How could al of those people - some of whom were experts in their fields - be so wrong about their predictions? Their track record makes the TV weatherman look like he ought to be placing bets in Vegas.:shock:

    stay safe.

    skidmark
    I just wish the Brady campaign and other Anti-gun morons would get as much press about them being wrong as they do when they're making predictions.

    You always see Helmke on TV versus someone like Suzanna Hupp or the guy from Students for Concealed Carry on Campus. he spouts his predictions of blood running in the dorms, and playing on the seeming irresponsibility of college students as binge drinkers and partiers, but nobody ever asks him why Utah, which ALLOWS CCW on campus, has never had any problems. Nobody ever asks him why none of their predictions ever came true from the dozens of Shall Issue CCW states.

    There's occasional snippets when local officials say "well, we're glad to say we were wrong," but when is the Brady campaign ever going to be held responsible for their lies, fearmongering and false prophecy?

    BTW, anyone know if the Brady bunch has ever come out against Open Carry in particular?

    ...Orygunner...

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