Sunday, 1 November 2009

Hi fellow shooter and firearms enthusiast. It has been a while since I last put pen to paper, metaphorically speaking. Domestically things have been quite quiet and on the world stage things have also been sluggish but you can rest assured that hose who would deny us our sport have not been sitting idly by. In a surprising move by domestic politicians an Early Day Motion (E.D.M) has been proposed by M.P. David Taylor (please note that I do not give his party, as those who wish to prevent shooting in any form represent all political parties) which has the support of 65 members across the House or put another way 10% of Parliament. The surprise is not the motion itself but the timing. With an election due at some time in the next year this E.D.M is aimed squarely at the urban voting populace. With less than 5% of the population living and working in a rural environment, making attacks on the country way of life and working practices is seen as a vote winner in the towns and cities across the country by some politicians. To read the motion and see if your M.P. is has signed up CLICK HERE.
The incumbent government has stated that shooting is safe in their hands. This is the same government that removed pistols from the law abiding only to see crimes involving those very firearms proliferate on the streets of our towns and cities to a level that was unheard of prior to the legislation. With over 3,000 new laws implemented since the current government come to power, some of which relate to the legitimate ownership of firearms and their use, the rider, the government decides if your sport is to continue, is as true now as when it was I wrote it 10 years ago.
If you want to continue to enjoy your sport there are some things you can do.
Firstly, decide what is important to you. Prioritise your thoughts when the election comes around. Despite having many political parties their approach to the issues that effect the country as a whole are by and large similar with the exception of the incumbent, they will continue with whatever policy they have implemented during their term in office as to change direction would be to admit they were wrong, unheard of.
Secondly, become informed. Do not take my word for it, go out and find out for yourself. There are many sources of information available to you. If possible try to find sources that have no agenda with the subject matter for example; “sugar is not bad for teeth” scientist's report. That sounds like we may have worried about loosing teeth for nothing, however closer inspection reveals that the scientist’s report was sponsored by a sugar producer and a leading tooth paste manufacturer. In the real world groups like IANSA, LACS and others commission reports and then twist the details to put across their agenda.
Thirdly, if you have taken the time to undertake the first two, make sure you belong to an organisation that is active in the promotion of a positive message for shooting in all its guises. There are those that would happily see some forms of shooting stopped for a quiet life and a political guarantee that their sport was allowed to continue. This attitude is ill-conceived at best, as once lost, it is inevitable that the lost discipline will be gone from these shores forever.
Fourthly, become a voter and if necessary vote on this one issue. I do, shooting is not my complete life but a significant part of it. It gives me the incentive to travel and the opportunity to meet people. It helps keep the countryside that I love and cherish in a condition conducive to promoting growth and sustainability.
In the next election of those chosen to govern this country, let them know that you shoot and that you VOTE.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Olympic venue review.

As you are aware we and many others including the B.A.S.C., C.A., N.R.A., and N.S.R.A. have been working hard lobbying members of Parliament to get the London Organising Committee of the Games and the Olympic Delivery Authority to reconsider Bisley as a possible venue for the 2012 shooting.

It would appear that during the original assessment of Bisley that a potentially less than honest appraisal of the National Shooting Centre had been carried out with intention of making it difficult for the Olympic Board to choose Bisley as shootings preferred venue.

As a result of your letter writing to those organisations given above, politicians, and in particular Lord Corbett, we have arrived at a point where we have wide ranging support for this cause from the Lords.
The result of this pressure and despite efforts by the Olympic authorities to derail the process, Lord Corbett has asked the ODA to attend a presentation of 'The Bisley Bid' in front of members of the Lords and Commons and then to explain the justification for their rejection of Bisley as a venue.

The support of the Lords and MPs shows what can be achieved if we at the grass roots level give up a little of our time and work together. As the saying goes “you’re either pulling the cart or getting a free ride”. I would like to thank you all for “pulling” this far. We can have a rest for a while whilst we await the outcome of the presentation but be prepared, there is away to go yet.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

A constitution does not guarantee your rights!

There is a country that has a freely elected government which is at present trying to consolidate its position for years to come by removing the right of free speech and encouraging its citizenry to report other citizens to the government if they believe that those concerned are not thinking the “correct” way.
The tactic of neighbourhood spying has worked very well for those that have used it in the past; you know those countries that many of our parents and grand-parents fought against. In more recent years the policy has been made use of on the African continent and some South American countries. In all cases the information was used to remove those who disagreed with the government and their use or misuse of power. This latest attempt to remove dissent from the populous is being perpetrated by the greatest advocate of free speech.
So what would cause you or me to fall foul of the correct thinking police? Well, do you disagree with any of the governments political positions or did you possibly not vote for them. Are you a former member of the armed services or part of service persons family? These guardians and former guardians of freedom are considered very dangerous as they have received specialist training in arms and warfare. Do you have religious beliefs that guide you through your life? Do you believe in personal freedom and your right to protect and defend your family? All of these things and others could mean that your neighbour may get you arrested.
So where is this new dictatorship, none other than the U.S.A.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano gave all the above reasons in her now-infamous DHS (Department of Homeland Security) report. Despite many requests from both parties but mainly the Republican Party to apologise and withdraw the report, she has so far refused.
Sens. David Vitter (R-La.) and Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) have introduced a resolution requesting that Janet Napolitano issue a formal apology to the nation’s military personnel and veterans whom the report deems extremist because they are pro-life and/or hold other conservative views. It’s an outrage that those who served this country honourably in Iraq and Afghanistan would be scrutinized by federal officials. All of society should be wary of a federal government that may be monitoring political groups who differ with the president on policy grounds.
It would appear that the supporters of free speech, religious freedom and all the other constitutional, amendment and bill of rights, that many Americans hold dear only apply if you agree with the President and his administration.

Monday, 6 April 2009

Time to get Ready

Within the next 15 months there will be a general election that will be critical to the future of a rural way of life, the countryside and the sports that are undertaken there.

There are many organisations that represent us at all levels and for all different reasons. They can only work on our behalf if we support them. In these most difficult of days not everyone can afford to give money and whilst money is appreciated, why not volunteer to help with a leaflet drop in your area or help out on a stall at a local farmers market.

Whether you are a fisherman, deerstalker, clay shooter, paper target shooter, hunter or small business owner, we are dependant upon being represented in parliament in a fair and equal manner. The up-coming elections are our chances to let those running know that they work for us and we can change our representatives if they do not work in our best interests.

In these times of truly global problems, do not lose sight of the difficulties encountered closer to home and why going to the range to bust clays or your favorite swim to catch a fish is important to you! "Vote Your Sport!”

Sunday, 15 March 2009

The first step in Gun control has started.

In just over two months the most anti gun president of the U.S. has started to implement his program to restrict firearms usage. The department of defence has passed an edict that any government fired brass must be destroyed and therefore removing the brass from the market place.

One of the fifth largest companies in the U.S., Georgia Arms, to re-manufacture this spent brass said that at present it produces in excess of 1,250,000 rounds of .223 a month. It pays the U.S. government .80 cents per case and the government receives over $1,000,000 a month. The U.S. government is prepared to accept a loss of 90% to facilitate this. The remanufacturing companies will still be allowed to purchase the brass but they must have it destroyed and sign a declaration that they will not remanufacture the empty cases. Georgia Arms has calculated that the company will lose approximately half of its income and will therefore have to lose half of its staff.

The U.S. department of defence has already started this process by making sure that the spent brass that it produces from now is chipped before the brass is sold. The chipped brass is then sold and will invariably be shipped out of the U.S. to China for processing.

This will effect the cost of all brass used in ammunition. In the U.S., police, National Guard, private citizens and competition shooters will no longer have a ready supply of affordable ammunition. This will not only effect cost of current military loads such as .223, 9mm, .45 etc but also the brass in all other ammunition.