Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Guns in Russia: "The Russian News & Information Agency carries this fascinating look at how the nation is considering more liberal firearm ownership laws. A 1996 law improved the process of legal gun ownership from impossible to extremely arduous. Political analyst Vladimir Simonov relates his personal experiences in clearing the bureaucratic hurdles to owning a gun. Freedom-stifling bureaucrats around the world think alike, apparently. The process required Simonov to see several medical specialists. In California's Bay area, at least one jurisdiction required concealed carry license applicants to get an evaluation from a psychologist. Even after jumping through all the hoops, Simonov writes, "Russians can only buy smoothbore hunting rifles of minimum 80 centimeters, gas pistols, or revolvers shooting rubber bullets." Only the rifle would be useful for home defense, and that is not nearly as safe as a handgun of suitable caliber. Russian firearm advocates cite the American experience of lower violent crime rates in areas of more liberal gun laws. And Latvia experienced an 80% reduction in street crime after a liberalization of gun laws".

Virginia: Nelson supervisors ease curbs on firearm noise: "A noise ordinance that originally appeared to have restricted the shooting of firearms in Nelson County was amended last night to satisfy hunters, target shooters and even the NRA. The Nelson Board of Supervisors re-adopted the noise ordinance, adding an exemption that places no restrictions on 'sounds generated from the discharge of firearms,' except at commercial sport-shooting ranges. 'That should alleviate all these worries people have about target shooting or sighting in rifles,' said Supervisor Thomas H. Bruguiere Jr. Hunting live game and nuisance or predatory animals is also exempted from the ordinance. The supervisors said the ordinance, first passed at an emergency meeting June 30, was just meant to control any disturbing noise that would affect neighbors."

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