If news accounts about the rescue of Mountlake Terrace hiker Tim Bailey are accurate, the 32-year-old owes a big part of his safe return from the wilds of Olympic National Park to the handgun he was carrying.
According to accounts from KOMO, the Seattle Times and Port Angeles Daily News, Bailey suffered a broken ankle in a nasty fall that immobilized him for a few days. However, when searchers were working the area around the Aurora Ridge trail Bailey capped off some rounds and they heard the gunfire.
A change in the law two years ago – supported by the National Rifle Association, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, and other national and local groups – made it legal to carry firearms in national parks for emergencies. Opponents declared guns were dangerous and there is no need for them in parks. Bailey’s case proved them all wrong.
They’re already chatting about this on the popular Northwest Hikers forum, and some of the remarks on the KOMO website are worth a read, particularly an exchange between someone whose Internet nickname is “Mliias” and a fellow who uses a real name, Eric Wadsworth.
“Mliias” said: “I pray he is safe, but why aren’t people REQUIRED to purchase permits along with finder beacons? I think it is so ridiculous (sic) and wastes way too much money the way it is done now.”
Wadsworth replied: “Mliias You really would be in favor of laws requiring people to pay the government to go walk around in the woods? If I give you $50, will you promise to never vote again in your life?”
This column will chip in another $100 if “Mliias” also promises not to have children.
Speaking of people who shouldn’t have kids, or for that matter, have anything to do with kids, school officials in Grand Island, Neb. – the home of Hornady Manufacturing, a giant in the reloading and ammunition manufacturing industry – allegedly did something so remarkably foolish that the story has burned up the Internet and particularly, the gun rights forums. School officials deny the reports.
A deaf youngster, Hunter Spanjer, was allegedly asked by school officials – depending upon to whose account one adheres – to change his name or change the way he signs because when he signs his name now, his fingers resemble a gun. And you know schools; they have zero tolerance when it comes to guns, or anything that looks like a gun, in school.
Grand Island school officials deny they forced any student to change their sign language name, and they issued a strong statement to that end, according to KOLN 1011 News. This came, as one might guess, after a few days of nastiness that reportedly included death threats.
Hunter gets to keep his sign language and Grand Island school officials apparently get to keep their jobs. The school district issued this statement:
Grand Island Public Schools has not changed the sign language name of any student, nor is it requiring any student to change how his or her name is signed. The school district teaches American Sign Language (“ASL”) for students with hearing impairments. ASL is recommended by the Nebraska Department of Education and is widely used in the United States. The sign language techniques taught in the school district are consistent with the standards of the Nebraska Department of Education and ASL.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act prohibits the school district from disclosing personally identifiable information concerning any student without the prior written consent of the student’s parent.
Therefore, the school district cannot discuss any particular student or identify any particular student.
Grand Island Public Schools is not requiring any current student with a hearing impairment to change his or her sign language name. Our mission remains: Every Student, Every Day, a Success!
However, when it comes to being stupid, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said something the other day that put the needle completely off the official Joe Biden gaffe meter, and there is audio, so there is no denial.
During a press event, Bloomberg responded to a female reporter who asked about his thoughts on last Friday’s shooting near the Empire State Building. He indignantly remarked, “Let me ask you, Miss, if somebody pointed a gun at you and you had a gun in your pocket, what would you do?”
And with that remark, Bloomberg led with his chin for Bellevue gun rights advocate Alan Gottlieb, who simply could not resist.
“There’s just one big problem with Bloomberg’s remark,” Gottlieb observed. “In his city, under his Draconian gun regulations, it is nearly impossible for a private citizen to have a gun in his or her pocket for personal protection, and he knows it.”
That was Gottlieb’s initial verbal left jab, but he followed with a right hook: “In other cities, in states where right-to-carry statutes have been adopted, citizens can respond to a life-threatening situation just as the mayor implies. But in the Big Apple, you’re in big trouble if you walk around with a gun in your pocket, unless you happen to be a well-connected elitist who can secure a carry permit.”
Meanwhile, it’s been rumored that Clint Eastwood will jet into Tampa today to be on hand for Republican Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech. I know what you’re thinkin.’
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