Thursday, 26 March 2020

Firearms Licensing & COVID-19

I have taken this from one of our friends websites. It is very important that if you are the owner of a shotgun or rifle in the UK, you get behind this as soon as you can. After all you can't go out anywhere for a couple of weeks, so spend your time helping a fellow shooter.

Bear in mind that the government have allowed an extension for vehicle MOT's of six months after expiration, and that's for the general public. So surely the nations most law abiding members should be given the same courtesy.

Please find below details of my communication sent to Priti Patel at the Home Office. In the current circumstances many licensees will find themselves falling foul of the law for reasons beyond their control. I feel that this should be addressed by all our organisations, whether you are affiliated or not.

May I respectfully request that in the current medical emergency, the Home Office should advise all firearms licensing authorities, to extend the validity of those license holders whose license is set to expire before the end of July for a period of six months from expiration date? This extension to be reviewed, should the medical emergency still be ongoing.

As you are aware, when licenses are renewed the applicant grants permission for the authorities to contact the applicants medical practitioner in order for a medical background check. At this point in time the medical services are stretched, without this added duty being asked of them.

The licensees are already in possession of firearms, and have undergone the necessary checks when their license was granted originally. A short extension, with a review when circumstances allow, would not affect the public safety aspect of the licensing system.

In line with the government guidelines of not vacating your property unless absolutely necessary, the site visits to licensee’s premises would be avoided. Additionally, this would enable the all the public services to concentrate their efforts on the medical emergency.

Tuesday, 21 January 2020

Richmond Virginia 2nd amendment rally.

Richmond rally.
                Mainstream media outlets across the whole of the U.S. predicted a rivers of blood scenario, as in excess of 10,000 law abiding American citizens attended a pro-second amendment march. In the aftermath of the event, that same media was desperate to put their own spin on the event.

                In reality, over 10,000 law abiding Americans marched in support of their right to keep and bear arms. These same Americans were from every race colour and creed, if you feel you must address someone by their appearance, beliefs, or, gender, I leave that to those that wish to divide society. These Americans, legally walked down the streets of Richmond, with an estimated 30,000+ firearms and ammunition. There were few police in evidence, just some outlying lines of state troopers. The marchers walked down the road, chanting their objections to the proposed legislation, and on one notable occasion, a spontaneous recital of the pledge of allegiance.

                These marchers were polite, courteous, and orderly. When questioned by supportive, and hostile media alike, they conducted themselves with dignity. In all cases they answered the questions to the best of their beliefs, in a polite manner, without the need for profanity, inflammatory language, or, an aggressive personae. All this was much to the chagrin of the mainstream, who it appears had hoped for at the very least a negligent discharge from one of the thousands of firearms on display.

                Then when it was all over, these marchers left in a peaceful and orderly manner; but not before litter picking the streets where they had been protesting. All of this is stark contrast to those who would suppress or remove the 2nd amendment rights of Monday’s marchers. The lack of tear gas, broken shop fronts, looting, fires and damage to property, which those same individuals or groups had said would happen. Based one assumes upon their own actions when demonstrating, were all absent from this rally.

                These marchers weren’t the exception, they are the rule; a rule by which all honest, law abiding gun owners, not only in the U.S., but all around the world conduct themselves. This is contrary to what some would have you believe, especially those not involved in the shooting sports.

                In conclusion I would just like to say thank you to of those marchers from Richmond, Virginia as a whole, and to all those Americans from all over the country who came to support their fellow 2nd amendment family members. This truly was a United States march.

Friday, 19 July 2019

What's it all about?

The latest attempt to undermine the status quo by animal rights groups is currently underway. As with all of these attempts the main goal is not what is laid out in the press releases, or, on the web pages of the group concerned. If you have read any of the previous articles, you will be aware that, the individual’s personal choice is theirs and theirs alone. You will also know that there are many shooters, from every conceivable stand point; from meat eaters to vegans, all religions, races, and creeds.

Despite their diverse viewpoints, they have a number of areas of commonality. The first and most obvious is that they all enjoy taking part in the many and various different options available in the shooting sports as a whole. They also have a strong sense of right and wrong, as defined by the laws of the land. You will be hard pushed to find a shooter with a parking ticket, or, a speeding fine, let alone anything more serious. This attitude is something that is borne out of the discipline of shooting, and the responsibility that owning such tools, for that’s what a firearm is, brings.

Another thing that binds, is the concern for the environment where their shooting is undertaken, along with the nature therein. These areas are a haven for wildlife, and considerably less impactful than the thousands of houses being built over the hundreds of hectares of green belt. But as usual I digress, sorry. Our ranges alone provide sanctuary for moths, butterflies, wild orchids and numerous other wild flowers, adders, grass snakes, slow-worms, stag and other beetles, and finally but not least badgers. But these ranges are not overgrown, and un-managed. They are however selectively managed in order to help keep the natural diversity of the environment they are on.

Certain groups over the years, and certainly in the last thirty years with more intensity, wish to remove those who have been taking care of the rural environment for generations, and replace them with people who think the right way. The right way being that, if man is involved its wrong, unless of course the person is one of their own. A local group who thought this way refused to allow the control of foxes or deer on their land. The upshot was that the deer population grew beyond what the environment could provide food for, resulting in emaciated and sickly deer living on the ground. Many of these deer were culled, but did not end up in the food chain as they were not fit for human consumption. The foxes mean while wreaked havoc on the ground nesting birds, during the nesting season, resulting in an explosion in fox numbers. They were also culled!

Having had little success with their previous tactics, these groups are now learning from those in the U.S.A. who have also tried the first route, and have for the past ten years or so gone down a different path. They know that the people who support their viewpoint are in the minority, a significant one, but still a minority, which has remained stable over time. The new route is one of the law, and it’s not about winning! The plan is to ruin financially their opponents. Both sides are able to draw on their respective supporters for finances, but the anti-group has nothing to lose by keep throwing law suit after law suit at their opponent. Those defending against such suits, are often prevented from continuing their lawful business, whilst these spurious cases are taken through the courts, or, relevant ministerial department.

The first attempt here in the UK was the challenge to, and the suspension of, the general license to control pest such as pigeons and corvids. With a relatively small outlay the group concerned brought chaos to many farmers around the country. Those concerned could not have picked a worse time to proceed with such an action. As self-proclaimed environmentalists and animal lovers, they systematically removed hundreds of thousands of native birds from the countryside they profess to care so much about. In my own locality there was an increase in jays, magpies, and jackdaws. There was by contrast, a marked decline in blackbirds, thrushes, sparrows, gold-crests and blue tits, all of which normally nest happily in the trees and hedges of my garden. One blackbird in her nest, visible from a window in the house, laid more than nine eggs, it may have been more, but only a few made it to hatching, and those that did never fledged.

This latest challenge to the shooting sports, in all its guises, is the most pernicious so far. Without everyone taking part to support those best placed to fight these law suits, there will be no future for shooting here in the UK. Firstly, they will ban game shooting. Then there will be a ban on vermin control. Clay pigeon shooting will be next, with the banning of lead shot, and whilst that is being passed, the use of lead in all ammunition will be included in the ban. Don’t believe me! Go to California, where such a lead ban is already in place. They came in from a different direction, but the ultimate goal is the same.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Sad, but true!

The article below this, “Will this petition fare any better?”, is something well worth while thinking about. There is an article written with regard to pheasant shooting on land owned by the Welsh government. I know not all shooters shoot game or vermin, and that’s fine. They, like the vast majority of the population are content to allow someone else to prepare their Sunday roast, hamburger, or, BBQ chicken fillets. Then there are those who shoot, and have chosen not to eat meat at all. As for vegans, I cannot say, as I have yet to meet a vegan shooter, but I’m sure there is someone out there.

But I digress, just a bit, as you can see shooters come in all forms, as do shooting sports. They are as fractured as a group as you could possibly get. They all enjoy their sport, but ask a clay shooter if they would support a game shooter, and likely as not the answer would be NO. They may then expand their view point as to why they should be allowed to shoot, whilst the game shooter should be curtailed. The same is often true when the rolls are reversed. In short, shooters, and the shooting community is, and are, their own worst enemy.

Back to the article, to read click here. The anti-shooting, animal rights, and other organisations are different. They have no qualms about banding together, if there is something they’re against, they’re all against it. In one paragraph of the article, it states that 76% of people that signed the consultation were for a ban on shooting on NRW land. It goes on to say that 12,700 people also signed animal aid’s petition supporting the consultations views. In a later paragraph, the Countryside Alliance are quoted as saying, “this will send a chill down the spine of the hundreds of thousands of people who shoot…..”

So where are these hundreds of thousands of people? I know they exist, not because I want them to, but because I can see exactly how many there are through freedom of information requests. And given that there are so many people that legally own a firearm, it really is surprising that situations like that below and the Natural Resources Wales, show such a disparity between ownership and support for any and all shooting debates and consultations.

In conclusion, will the petition, or, the game shooting argument on Welsh government owned land succeed? Sadly, most probably not. The apathy, and reticence of shooters to support any shooting outside of the discipline they undertake is proven. Just ask a pistol shooter, the rest of the shooting community were happy to sacrifice them in order to appease the anti’s, in the vane hope that they would then leave the rest of the shooting community alone. The anti’s have nothing to lose, and will keep pushing their viewpoint until they eventually win out.

The short poem by Martin Niemoller sums the situation up with extreme clarity; if you are unwilling to help others, when the time comes, there may be no-one to help you.

Saturday, 7 July 2018

Will this petition fare any better?

I'd like to say thank you to all those concerned with the following. I have cut and pasted the item directly from our friends at Fittleworth. There is no more to be said as to why you should support the this petition.
Not so long ago in the U.S.A. similar legislation was proposed with regard to .50 calibre firearms. It was worded in such a way that when the National Rifle Association, read and studied it in detail, its ambiguity became clear. For if it had been passed into law, any calibre larger than .50 would have become illegal. This would have meant that many shotguns would have fallen into the category of being larger than .50 calibre.
You can look at this two ways. One, a badly written piece of legislation, and the unintended consequences of such proposed legislation. Or, two, it was written that way deliberately, and without the due diligence of those supporting shooting, if passed would have given the authorities the opportunity to remove legally held firearms at a stroke. Either way you must decide for yourself. But whatever you do decide, bear in mind, this is an ongoing situation, and without your support now, you may be next.

I know that there have been numerous petitions with regard to shooting and the shooting sports over the years; none of which have met with any success to speak of. This one however is worthy of your attention, and hopefully your support and signature.
This is not the thin end of the wedge, we are way past that now, and in my estimation, we are about half way up the wedge. This petition is an effort to halt this onerous piece of legislation. Legislation, which in its own words, is not based on any facts, figures, or, evidence. Despite any, and all evidence to the contrary, honest, law abiding sportsmen and women are yet again being targeted.
This time don’t wait for these infringements to directly affect you, help a fellow shooter to be able to continue enjoying their sport. After all, next time it may be your chosen discipline!

Remove articles 28-35 inclusive in chapter 6 of the offensive weapons bill.