Sunday, September 28, 2008

Florida shooting justified : "A Putnam County man walked free Saturday after a jury believed he shot six people in a two-family feud to protect his home from an armed mob. The jury of six women deliberated for one hour before deciding that Baldemar Riojas, 49, was not guilty of the six counts of attempted second-degree murder for which prosecutors wanted him to serve 25 years to life in prison. Riojas fired a .22 caliber rifle at the people on April 10, 2005 when a long-simmering feud erupted at 3:58 a.m., Putnam County sheriff investigators said. Defense attorney Robert Fields of Palatka said the Riojases were awakened that April morning by gunfire and rocks striking their mobile home. A man with a shotgun fired at Riojas as he was trying to reason with him. Then he had to fight off a man with a 9mm handgun who jumped over his fence because the gate was chained and locked. When he realized the mob would not stop at rock throwing, Riojas grabbed his weapon and defended his home, Fields said. "Mr. Riojas knew that he and his family were going to be killed that night and he did take a stand in and around his house," Fields told the jury. "A reasonable man was doing what a reasonable man would do when attacked by unreasonable people."

SCOTUS decision not good for Obama: "Last spring, after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to arms, Democrats hoped the decision would neutralize the gun issue. Instead the ruling, by inviting debate over which kinds of gun control are constitutional, has made the issue more salient. That's bad news for Barack Obama, whom the National Rifle Association says "would be the most anti-gun president in American history." The Democratic nominee pays lip service to Second Amendment rights while calling for "commonsense," "reasonable" restrictions. But Mr. Obama's sense of what is reasonable, while common among the left-liberal politicians and activists inside his comfort zone, may seem decidedly unreasonable to the pro-gun voters the NRA is trying to mobilize against him. Since these voters made a decisive difference in the 2000 presidential election and arguably in 2004 as well, this is a threat Mr. Obama ignores at his peril. The NRA plans to spend $15 million urging voters in battleground states of the Midwest and Mountain West to "Defend Freedom" and "Defeat Obama."

Fact-Checkers Fall Short in Criticizing NRA's Anti-Obama Ads: "This past weekend, Joe Biden, campaigning in southwest Virginia, called any notion that Obama wanted to take away people’s guns “malarkey.” Montana's Democratic governor, Brian Schweitzer, previously told reporters that Obama "Ain't ever going to take your gun away." Obama regularly makes similar statements -- at least about rifles and shotguns.... The Washington Post describes its own Fact Checker report as giving the NRA “spot three out of four Pinocchios for its claims that Obama would take away guns and ammunition used by hunters.” But what are the facts? Were the NRA ads this bad? How accurate are the fact checkers? .... Obama has come out for handgun bans as recently as this past February. ABC News’ local Washington, D.C., anchor, Leon Harris, asked Obama: "One other issue that's of great importance here in the district as well is gun control ... but you support the D.C. handgun ban." Obama's simple response: "Right." When Harris said "And you've said that it's constitutional," Obama again says "right" and is clearly seen on tape nodding his head "yes."

Gun laws eased in the Australian State of NSW: "Changes to gun laws will make it easier for people to gain access to firearms from October 1. But while shooting clubs expect more people to be attracted to the sport, critics say the amendments will lead to more high-powered weapons and gun crime. The Shooters Party-initiated bill allows more exemptions for people, including minors, without a licence to participate at shooting clubs. The law, passed with the support of the Government and Coalition, also removes the 28-day waiting period for licence-holders buying additional guns and renewing permits. Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (NSW) executive officer Richard Gawned said the changes simply removed the bureaucracy involved in buying more firearms. Amendments also made it easier for people to take up the sport, with those who were unlicensed to be supervised by licence-holders at all times.

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