Facts Undercut FL Newspaper, Police Chief on CCW Statistics

by Nancy

 
Facts Undercut FL Newspaper, Police Chief on CCW Statistics
Date: Feb 17, 2007 2:29 PM
The New GUN WEEK article is referring to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel
articles that were sent out earlier via VTGuns.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The New GUN WEEK. February 20. 2007
Page 2

Facts Undercut FL Newspaper, Police Chief on CCW Statistics

By Bob Lesmeister
National Correspondent

The Second Amendment is a loophole to the Constitution.
That’s what the major print media thinks of the right to
keep and bear arms and they wonder why circulation is in
the gutter.

Reporters for The South Florida Sun-Sentinel were shocked..,
shocked to learn that firearms in Florida do not have to be
registered with police and can be kept in the home without a
permit. In a recent series “expose” on concealed firearms
licenses which spanned the last week of January, the paper
boasted the following subhead, “Want a gun? Florida makes
it easy.” Naturally, what followed was a litany of
restrictions and requirements needed in order to obtain a
legal gun in the state, but how many readers are likely to
get past the phony headline?

How easy is it really? For starters, you must be 21 or
older to purchase a hand gun and 18 or older to purchase a
rifle or shotgun. If you don’t have a CCW, you must undergo
a background check with the state. Also, those without a
CCW must wait three days before taking possession of their
already purchased handgun. In addition, you must fill out
the federal ATF Form 4473 with personal information and then
answer a slew of questions concerning your eligibility to
purchase the firearm.

Justification

That’s more than what’s required to purchase a news van.
Equally disturbing was the item that declared, “No
justification for a license is required; ‘self-defense’ is
sufficient.” You may be asking the same question as I. What
greater justification is there but self-defense? The
editorial pages as well as the news pages in The
Sun-Sentinel have long been known as being far left of The
Daily Worker, a newspaper published in New York City by the
Communist Party USA.

January must have been a slow news month for The
Sun-Sentinel to spend over 290 column inches on the initial
story and hundreds on follow-ups. To give you an idea of
the far left slant of the paper, in the initial issue that
covered the series, the editors devoted an entire page to
the celebrity laden anti-war protestors in Washington, DC,
and then devoted a whole six lines to those who provided a
counter-protest.

You can almost hear the hysteria in the newsroom when you
read the headline, “New licenses soar.” This must be cause
for alarm if you believe the far left propaganda the paper
creates. Imagine more than 410,000 people with CCWs in a
state of over 18 million people. That’s a whopping 2.3%
who are licensed to carry a weapon which can include, but is
not restricted to: firearms; knives; pepper/gas sprays;
electronic zappers, etc.

The whole basis of the anti-CCW articles is the term
“loophole,” a label most gun grabbers slap on an honest
citizen’s ability to own and use firearms. If you adhere to
what most of them say, you’d have to believe that the Second
Amendment itself is a loophole. However, the loophole with
CCWs in Florida, as well as other states with similar laws,
is not with the CCW law or how it’s implemented but rather
with courts.

Before the Florida law took effect in 1987, there were only
25 concealed weapon permits issued in Broward County, the
second most populated county in the state. As of December
2006, that number has grown to over 35,800. It didn’t take
the paper long to find a sympathetic voice to their leftist
cause. “That’s an alarming increase,” cried Duncan Foster,
the Coral Springs Police chief. Coral Springs is a suburb
of Ft. Lauderdale. He further lamented, "I don’t view
that as a positive trend. I view that as a negative. The
more guns on the street, the more prone people are to
violence.” Yes, he was talking more out of his rear than
from any known statistic. For a police officer to say
something that ignorant when his own state’s law enforcement
figures prove otherwise, forces one to question his state
of mind. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE)
annual reports prove Chief Foster’s opinions on concealed
carry are pure nonsense.

In 1993 the total state murder rate was 1,187. In 2005 it
was 881. The same held true for other serious crimes as
well.

1993 2005
Forcible Sex Offenses 13,752 12,230
Robbery 47,742 30,092
Aggravated Assault 99,108 82,622
Burglary 245,353 64,777
Larceny 594,793 72,257
Motor Vehicle Theft 114,632 75,204

To say these significant drops in crime, especially in
burglary and vehicle theft, are merely coincidental to the
implementation of the state’s CCW law would be to hide from
the facts, or in the case of Foster, distort the facts. It
would also have been a flight of fancy if one believed that
The Sun-Sentinel would have brought out these figures.

The reporters, Megan O’Matz and John Maines filled with the
names and backgrounds of felons who were issued CCWs. The
real loophole emphasized in the series had nothing to do
with issuing CCWs but rather the failure of the courts to do
their jobs. In all of the cases cited, the persons who were
issued CCWs that shouldn’t have qualified were persons who
the court left unpunished and out of the system of checks
and balances. For many, the judge withheld conviction or
set the violators to probation. So, it was no surprise that
the reporters didn’t have the integrity to mention the
judges who were at fault. All through the series of
articles, the reporters intimated or blamed outright the
National Rifle Association, FDLE, and the CCW system, yet
not one liberal judge was mentioned or if he/she was it was
buried under hundreds of lines of type.

As if the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence is any kind
of credible source for firearms ownership information, the
reporters quoted Brady Center’s legal director, Dennis
Henigan, who complains, “Where the stakes are so high, where
a mistake in granting a license means a dangerous person
carrying a hidden handgun on the street ..., the public
cannot afford mistakes.” But what government body is 100%
correct or faultless?

Florida Mirrors US

Other facts that should have been included in the CCW
articles were obviously omitted purposely. In the US more
than 70% of violent crimes do not involve firearms. Violent
crime rates do not reflect violent gun-related crime trends.
If you look at the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Reports,
firearms were used in violent crimes as follows: Aggravated
Assault 25%; Robbery 41%; Rape 5%-10%, and Homicides 68%.
Florida figures mirror the US figures.

“People get licenses, lose licenses and get them back again,
sometimes repeatedly,” the reporters cry. Being guiltless of
crime should be no excuse for being denied a CCW says the
paper. “It happens because charges are dropped, people are
exonerated, restraining orders expire or enough time passes
since a crime to qualify for reinstatement.”

Perhaps one should ask The Sun-Sentinel or its parent, the
Tribune Company, how many felons and former felons they have
hired, or how many employees they have currently under
investigation for felonies and serious misdemeanors


The Second Amendment IS Homeland Security !

Posted on Feb 17, 2007, 8:34 PM

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