Tag Archive for gun

2nd Amendment Politics in the Classroom

Screen Shot 2013-02-14 at 8.28.21 PMMy daughter comes from home from school almost everyday with stories from two or three of her teachers.  These teachers are leading the AP Classes and Honors Classes she is taking in her junior year of High School.  We actually live in a conservative part of California and in a town with a high population of 2nd Amendment supporters. Still, I am finding out that not everyone here feels the same about the 2nd Amendment as I do.  Basically, the brightest children at my daughter’s school spend hours in classrooms with teachers who blatantly discuss their opinion on given topics in the news without properly discussing the alternate side.  If any of the students begin to debate the other point of view, they are frequently told that the teacher is finished talking about it, or he simply tells them they are misguided.

Another well respected mother and blogger at the Bookwormroom.com who does more than her part to support the 2nd Amendment found herself in this situation. Her son came from from high school a couple days ago and shared with her two New York Times articles that his English teacher had distributed to the students.  One article was byElisabeth Rosenthal and the other by Nicholas Kristof.  Each advocates a significant increase in gun control.

Please click HERE to read the letter that she wrote in response, and wanted to send.

Listen to your children.  They learn so much from us, their parents, but they spend most of their waking hours with these teachers.  If we, as parents, complain, will we put a target on our children?  If we do not, will the situation get worse?

I would love to hear suggestions about how you would handle these situations without affecting your child’s grade.  Is there a way to bring fairness and ethics gently into a classroom that has gone astray?

Guest Post: Say “Mentally Unstable” not “Mentally Ill” when talking about gun control

Screen Shot 2012-04-11 at 10.07.11 PMIf you had a chance to read my Analysis of the 23 Executive Actions that Obama said he was taking during a Press Conference earlier this week, or if you have been watching the News, you know some of the Presidents plan focuses on the mental health issue.  I am worried that there will be too much “gray area” and these actions will be extremely overreaching – stomping on the 2nd Amendment rights of Americans who would never cause another harm unjustly.  
Today a reader of this humble blog sent me some of his thoughts on the mental health actions the President is taking.  Let us know what you think about this very complicated issue.
GUEST POST

I read your article about Obama’s executive orders. I have heard many gun people talk about the mental health issue in gun control. The president seems to be focusing on this. I think we should be vigilant about this and not fooled by something that sounds like common sense.

Google “mental illnesses listed in DSM” (DSM = “diagnostics and statistics manual of psychiatric disorders” the handbook used by mental health professionals to diagnose mental illness.) I think you will be surprised by what you find. Such things as “male erectile disorder”,”nightmare disorder”,”premature ejaculation”, ”caffeine-induced sleep disorder”, “night eating syndrome” and “primary insomnia” are listed as psychiatric disorders. If mental illness is used to exclude people from owning guns, then 90% of the population could possibly be excluded.

About seven percent of adults in the U.S. have been diagnosed with depression and anxiety. This alone could exclude a large segment of our population. I am not for arming the mentally unstable but mental illness is a catch-all phrase that puts a stigma on people who function normally, but may have a problem or condition that does not pose a threat to themselves or others but requires therapy or medication.

I think to exclude people who see doctors or take medications for minor things such as generalized anxiety or mild depression is a mistake and uses twisted statistics and overly broad definitions to disarm a few more people. The next argument they will use is that certain over the counter and/or prescribed medications cause diminished capacity and poor judgement therefore if you use these you cannot own a firearm.

Also, doctors, in the interest of keeping their licenses and avoiding lawsuits, will tend to be less forgiving and more aggressive in diagnosing and reporting those who might in the absence of the new executive orders would otherwise not be of concern and not be reported. Err on the side of caution has always been their motto. This is good when diagnosing cancer but when depriving a person of their liberties, a different and higher standard should be used.

I know most mass murderers in the U.S. had mental illness. Does that mean anything? Is it statistically significant? What percentage of people with mental illness commit violent crimes or mass murder specifically. Think of how many people in the U.S, take antidepressants or something to help stop smoking who have never committed a violent crime. I think this is just a device to begin excluding people from gun ownership. For that matter what percentage of law abiding gun owners commit violent crime? Also,what percentage of each gender, or each religion, or each ethnicity commits violent crimes? Should the government determine who has what rights based on these?

While I am ranting, as far as the “if it saves even one child” issue/war cry used by gun grabbers to justify more erosion of our rights; this also is a strategy designed to elicit sympathy and also sounds like common sense. This is the biggest lie used by these people. They (elitist government) don’t care about our children except that our children will provide future cannon fodder for their wars or wage slaves to enrich corporations that they own part of. If they really meant “if it saves even one child” then they would require crash helmets to be worn in cars, sprinkler systems installed in every home, and annual full body MRI’s for everybody. I mean, these things will save more than just one life. Better yet, if they care so much for children then ban abortion, as this will save more than one child’s life.

I think “mentally unstable” would be a better term to use when referring to those who shouldn’t own guns due to mental illness and a better definition to exclude people from gun ownership. Since six of the twenty three executive orders proposed for gun control have something to do with mental hearth either directly or indirectly it seems that “the mentally ill should not own guns argument” will be a large part of this latest gun grab attempt. It sounds good, but mental illness is based on a doctor’s or social worker’s opinion and interpretation of a manual that is based on opinion and statistics. In my opinion anyone who is crazy should not own a motor vehicle therefore no gun grabber or second amendment opponent should own a motor vehicle because one has to be crazy to think that by making more laws stating that criminals can’t have guns will keep criminals from owning guns and make people safe from these criminals.  Again, I don’t think that the mentally unstable should be allowed to own guns, but we better be wary of the road on which we allow our government to travel. In depriving us of our liberties they will start from the outer edges and peel away layers of citizens and rights citing various references and studies until they finally reach the center which is where they see themselves to be.

~ A concerned citizen

ANALYSIS: What Obama’s 23 Executive Actions Mean to Gun Owners

Screen Shot 2013-01-17 at 10.14.08 PMI have been reviewing the List of 23 Executive Actions the president announced in his press conference yesterday.  As a gun owner, and staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment I was surprised he did not go further. There were additional actions that were within his power, actions he chose not to take.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not naïve – he did announce his plan to push Congress to ban so called “Assault Weapons”, high capacity magazines, etc.  So, this is not over, these Executive actions are not the end of the story.  Hopefully the 113th Congress will be as inept at pushing gun legislation through as the 112th Congress was in negotiating the debt ceiling and the “fiscal cliff.”

After really looking into each action, and trying to understand what it was saying on its own, a larger picture did form.  I do think these actions are “Big Brother” taking one large step forward.  When we visit the doctor for the flu, we will be asked if we have a gun.  If we say “yes” it will be entered into our medical record.  In order for mental health issues to be used in a background check, there will have to be a connection made to pull that mental health info into NICS so it is available for a background check.  Eventually, a box will be checked in our electronic medical records, does the patient own a gun, Yes or no. Because the connection will already have been made to pull the mental data in, they will be able to easily pull data on the admitted gun owners.  Remember, they will be able to get this information from your children during their check-ups as well.  Maybe this information will never be used for nefarious reasons.  Does that “hope” make you sleep better?

My opinion and analysis on the 23 “Executive Actions” are as follows:

1. “Issue a presidential memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.”

-  Within this memorandum, the President is going to attempt to link information from many or all Federal Agencies, and then use it against you if you want to buy a gun.  This did not really hit me until I read the memorandum and what that means. They are going to have the Attorney General, Eric Holder chair a NICS working group that includes representatives from the Departments of Defense; Health and Human Services; Transportation; Veteran Affairs; Office of Personnel Management; Office of Management and Budget; and such other agencies or offices as the Chair may designate.

I am in the military, I drive a car, when I retire, I will get some portion of my health care through the VA.  Does this mean, something a person does when they are 18 years old in the military will affect them when they are 52 years old, wanting to buy a gun?

This could very well link military records, health records, VA records, driving records, travel records (TSA), it could tell them that I flew with a gun, where I went with it, etc.  If you are found to have been reckless with a car at some point, would that prohibit you from buying a gun?

2. “Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system.”  Read the HIPAA Privacy Rules Summary here and you can read the entire Federal Regulations for the HIPAA Rules here.

- According to the HIPAA summary document, HIPAA was designed to “assure that individuals’ health information is protected while allowing the flow of health information needed to provide and promote high quality health care and to protect the public’s health and well being.”  This means they do protect individuals’ identifiable info, while sharing info to protect others.

I assume that the legal barriers identified here, mean that mental issues will be shared and linked with NICS for background checks.  I suspect that eventually, the information about who does and does not have a gun will also be linked.  Even if a national gun registration is never approved, that will not matter.  Most Americans are good honest people and trust Nurses and Doctors without questions.  (I am not saying you should not trust a Dr.) I am saying that the information they collect will no longer remain private.  Most people will willingly share their most intimate details with a doctor, and when the question about gun ownership is asked – they will simply answer it.  Voila! A national gun registry (of sorts) is born – just like that.

3. “Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.”

- This is going to be the ole’ “Carrot on a stick” for the states.  If you want additional federal funding for health care, for schools, for roads – who knows, the state will have to agree to share their information.  This is just one more piece of privacy down the drain.

“If it saves the life of just one child…” ~President Obama

4. “Direct the attorney general to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.”

- Every time The Honorable Eric Holder is mentioned in these actions, it gives me pause. Given the issues of the guns lost south of the border, I think he let more than a few dangerous people slip through the cracks on his watch already.

5. “Propose rule giving law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.”

- This is not really different than requiring a background check to buy a gun.  If you bought a gun ten years ago, then it was seized for some reason, you would need a new background check to get your gun back.  I have a feeling that very few of these people would ever get their guns back.  What ever caused the gun to be seized could be a disqualifying factor.  I think this would apply if your guns were stolen as well.  If the cops found your guns that you had lawfully owned for 10 years, then they were stolen, if all the newly linked info popped a red flag, you might be denied your weapons back.

6. “Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.”

- This is a letter all gun dealers would receive, telling them how to run a background check for private party sales.  I am sure the gun dealers can charge a fee for this service, and may be able to make a profit on it.  Will that profit be enough to make it worth their time?  I doubt that.  I will say, if you do sell a gun from one private party to another, if you don’t have the person you are selling it to get a background check, and you sell it to them anyway, and they subsequently commit any type of gun crime, and the gun is traced back to you – I am sure you will be charged with a crime yourself.

7. “Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.”

- I am ok with this, as long as the talking points of the campaign are written by someone who actually knows what they are talking about.  The only concern I have is that the commercials and other marketing materials will have to be paid for someway.  Maybe they can use some of the funding they have earmarked for the war on drugs, that campaign is not doing much good anyway.  Or even better – they can take the money they are spending for the First Lady to tell us how to feed our children.

8. “Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).”

- What is this saying?  Review the safety standards?  So, the Obama administration is going to have someone, or a maybe a group, review the standards to which industry builds safes and locks for guns.  This will cost man hours, so it will require funding.  Also, after they review them, what will they do next? This action is really a non-action, just a tax sponge.

9. “Issue a presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.”

- I am ok with Law Enforcement tracing where a weapon came from when it is recovered in a criminal investigation.  By Law Enforcement, I do meant the Police, the sheriff, military police, the FBI, and I guess the CIA.  I think that Border Patrol would be ok as well.  (This is the Lil Chantilly definition of Law Enforcement)

You might be interested to know that this memo says Federal Law Enforcement Agencies will immediately begin to submit trace requests through the ATF, starting the date of the memo (January 16, 2013).

You might be MORE interested to know  “Federal law enforcement agencies” were defined as Departments of State, Treasury, Defense, Justice, Interior, Agriculture, Energy, Veterans Affairs, and Homeland Security, and such other agencies and offices that regularly recover firearms in the course of their criminal investigations as the President may designate. This was too much – WAY too much.

10. “Release a DOJ report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.”

- I am ok with this, I do know people who have had guns stolen, maybe they will get their guns back.  I wonder if this report includes guns “lost” south of the border?

11. “Nominate an ATF director.”

- I can’t believe this was even included on this list.  He is going to nominate B. Todd Jones as the next director of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  Ok – one action done.  He should have added, “brush teeth before bed” to the list.

12. “Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.”

- This is ok,  it needs to be funded, and the training needs to be provided by people who know what they are talking about.

13. “Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence and prosecute gun crime.”

- I have no idea what this means, way too broad statement with no way to measure it’s success.  This is not an action, it is a wish.

14. “Issue a presidential memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.”

- The President authorizes the Center for Disease Control to begin assessing existing strategies for preventing gun violence and identifying the most pressing research questions, with the greatest potential public health impact. He was not able to give them funding to do so.  With in his “plan” he asks Congress to approve $10 million dollars for this research.  Maybe the CDC has extra people, already funded who can take this on.  If not, this is also not an action – it is dependent on Congress to fund it.

15. “Direct the attorney general to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies.”

- Ah Ha!  Now we know, after the review listed in action #8 happens, Eric Holder will issue a report on safety technology and “Challenge” the gun safe and lock industry to make their products even better!  “I double-dog dare you”, he will say, “make this safe stronger!”

16. “Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.”

- Hospitals and clinics will receive a “reminder” letter that they are allowed to ask if guns are in your house.  I am sure that the CDC will analyze the gathered information with their new funding to research gun violence.  They will make odd correlations between guns and other things.  If many single women, or even single mothers have guns (the great equalizer), a correlation will be made that women who have guns have a high divorce rate, or women who have guns don’t get married.

I will either lie when I am asked this question, or I will refrain from answering.  I do believe that those who refrain from answering will be assumed to have a gun, so I will probably just say no.  I will train my children to say “I don’t know.”  There is no way I am going to tell some random medical person if I have a gun so that it can then be entered into some national database, or become part of my medical record.  No way!

17. “Release a letter to health care providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence to law enforcement authorities.”

- So many of us in the gun community have been saying things like, look at the mental issues, not guns if you want to stop these mass shootings.  I see this action, and I have to ask myself, how serious do I want them to look at the mental side of things when it comes to mass shootings? The Aurora Shooter did tell his Psychiatrist about his violent thoughts, and as I understand, she did report it to some degree.  Would I have been ok with her screaming about that man at the top of her lungs that he wanted to hurt people?  Yes – most certainly.  For me, I am going to need this one to be more defined.  If a dad has a bad day, and loses his temper – then tells the marriage counselor, “I could just kill my wife for painting the living room mint green!” If the counselor reports him, does he lose his guns?

18. “Provide incentives for schools to hire school resource officers.”

-  The way this is worded in the more descriptive document is that school boards could decide for themselves if they want more counselors to assess mental health, or if they want armed guards.  According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, in 2009-2010, there were 98,817 elementary and secondary public schools in the United States.  In the Presidents own paper, he said he would hire about 1,000 resources officers for schools.  This is about 20 per state, and .01 new resource officers for each public school.  In other words, this meant absolutely nothing.  This was just like a big warm Presidential hug to the grandma sitting in front of her home just smashed by a tornado.  It looks nice for TV, but in the long run will do nothing.

19. “Develop model emergency response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education.”

- I am sure this one will be used in conjunction with #12.  I am ok with this, as long as it is developed by people with the right knowledge and then posted online where it is easily downloaded and shared.

20. “Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover.”

- Hey, if they cover everything else – they might as well cover this.  I personally think that mentally ill men should be given very high priority for treatment and for coverage in general.

21. “Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within ACA exchanges.”

- I am not sure what this means, but it sounds a lot like something that strengthens Obama Care, without clarification as to how it will improve mental health services.

22. “Commit to finalizing mental health parity regulations.”

- Maybe #22 is what I was looking for in #21, couldn’t they have just combined these two?

23. “Launch a national dialogue led by Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan on mental health.”

- The president wants this discussion to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness that prevents many individuals from seeking treatment.  How are they going to do this while also tying mental health to the background checks.  That is going to be tricky, I see a lot of backlash.  I know we do want people that are mentally disturbed enough to kill 20 first graders to see help, and have their gun rights removed but this is one area where a government could very quickly overstep their bounds.  All of these mental health actions need to have very carefully defined limits.

SUMMARY:

I am most concerned about the privacy concerns and where the lines will be drawn for these efforts.  I will have more to say in the following days and weeks as this plays out.  Tonight, this was my first cut to help you start understanding what happened yesterday.

What do you think?  Do any of these bug you more than others?  Do you like any of them? Do you have specific knowledge in one of the areas covered?  Feel free to educate us further!

Additional References:

Presidential Memorandums:

Tracing of Firearms in Connection with Criminal Investigations

Engaging in Public Health Research on the Causes and Prevention of Gun Violence

Improving Availability of Relevant Executive Branch Records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System

The President’s Plan to Protect Our Children:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/wh_now_is_the_time_full.pdf

Read all 23 Executive Orders Here!

You can find all 23 Executive orders here. I am still reading through them. Let me know what you think. Do any of them make sense? Which ones are overstepping the bounds. Let’s talk…

UPDATE:  Here is a list of all 23 Executive Orders put in place to reduce school shootings.

1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.

2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system.

3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.

4. Direct the Attorney General to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.

5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.

6. Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.

7. Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.

8. Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).

9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.

10. Release a DOJ report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.

11. Nominate an ATF director.

12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.

13. Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence and prosecute gun crime.

14. Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.

15. Direct the Attorney General to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies.

16. Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.

17. Release a letter to health care providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence to law enforcement authorities.

18. Provide incentives for schools to hire school resource officers.

19. Develop model emergency response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education.

20. Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover.

21. Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within ACA exchanges.

22. Commit to finalizing mental health parity regulations.

23. Launch a national dialogue led by Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan on mental health.

Bill Clinton Says “This is Nuts” and Encourages Gun Control

Screen Shot 2013-01-09 at 6.25.09 PMToday Former President, Bill Clinton, was the Keynote Speaker at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. He did get around to talking about electronics, but first used his platform to encourage increased gun control.  He asked, “Why does anyone need one of those things that carries 100 bullets?”  I know Bill Clinton is a very intelligent person, put perhaps he needs to go to the range with me, and I will teach him some proper terminology (before he continues to tell us what to do with our thingies.)

Get the Word Out: Details on Feinstein’s Assault Weapon Legislation Here!

Forward this photo to all your friends - get the word out! (Click for easier to read .pdf version)

Forward this photo to all your friends – get the word out! (Click for easier to read .pdf version)

 

Feinstein’s Bill will ban further production of all firearms with detachable magazines.  This includes pistols with detachable magazines.  This includes that cute little pink .22 rifle you just bought for your daughter this Christmas.  What if you already have them?  Well – you can keep them, IF you register them in accordance with the National Firearms Act (NFA), the same as automatic weapons and suppressors are registered and controlled today.

If you do nothing – if you think, “This will never happen,” you will wake up with the wolf at your door, ready to collect your weapons, ready to make you a felon for not Federally registering your currently legal guns.  CLICK HERE TO WRITE CONGRESS!

How long does it take to get your CURRENTLY LEGAL gun registered through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) in accordance with the NFA?  Here is a quote from ATF’s own website:

The sheer volume of applications submitted for ATF review has dramatically increased in recent years. In fiscal year 2005, for example, ATF processed 41,579 NFA applications of all types. By FY 2011 that number had increased to 105,373, with a 25% decrease in the number of NFA examiners available to process the work. Currently, ATF’s customer service goal is to process an Application to Make and Register a Firearm (Form 1) and an Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration of a Firearm (Form 4) within 6 months of ATF’s receipt of a correctly executed application.

Keep in mind, they are talking about current times.  When people attempt to register 300 Million guns, this number will increase dramatically.  It will take a year or more.  Oh, did you notice the line about “correctly executed application”?  Don’t dare make a mistake, or you will start all over.

How much will the ATF tax cost when your registration is approved:

Screen Shot 2012-12-30 at 1.50.45 PM

From the ATF’s FAQ portion of their official website

Yes, $200.00 per weapon that must be registered.  What will you have to register?  Everything that is newly banned, anything with a detachable magazine, anything with a thumbhole stock, anything with one military characteristic, anything that holds more than 10 rounds, detachable or not, anything with a flash suppressor, even California Legal AR-15′s with bullet buttons will be included.

Will someone out there please tell me what kind of evil a thumbhole stock is?  Wait – what about a flash suppressor?  I would love to know.

How many guns do you have?  If you have:

  • a hunting rifle, (maybe two so your spouse or kids can go too.)
  • a .22 rifle for your kids, or squirrel hunting
  • a 9mm pistol
  • a .22 pistol because they are so fun (and cheap) to take to the range

You will have to come up with $1000.00 to keep them all.  For many people in rural areas, the guns I listed are an average family’s gun inventory.

All that, and two years after the ban, we will still have mass shootings, we will still have mass casualty events.  Why?  Because insane people and criminals will still find ways to hurt people.  The Criminals WILL NOT register their weapons.  Don’t you get it – they are CRIMINALS!!  So, once again, the good, law-abiding citizens will be the ones to pay, and I do not mean just with money.  They will pay with blood, when they cannot protect their families, or when something worse comes along like “Government Tyranny” as stated in the Constitution.

This proposed legislation is NOT to be taken lightly.  We need every single person who even considers that someday they will want a gun – of any kind – to act.  Write your Congressmen and women today!!!

Armed Conflict in Disaster

I just read this story about a man in line for fuel, tensions rose, and he pulled a gun.

When natural disasters occur, it brings out the best and worst in mankind. I would encourage each of you to make simple preparations to get through the future “storm”. If each American had enough food, water, and fuel to take care of their own family for even 14 days – it would get you through most disasters. It would give the government a chance to respond. FEMA, the Red Cross and other organizations do a fine job, but it will never be enough. It will never be fast enough. If you could take care of your family comfortably for 14 days, you could probably take care of another family for 7 days.

Madonna Puts a Gun to Her Head on Stage

Tonight at Hyde Park in London, Madonna’s handlers were more worried that her microphone would cut off due to city curfew (like Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen) rather than worry about what crazy stunt she would pull onstage.  She was preforming for her tour promoting her new album, MDNA.  I realize she is a pop star and must out do other crazy stunts, but I am sure she still has fans, and some of them could be impressionable.  Dancing around with a prop gun is one thing, posing in various “hot-girl with a gun” stances is understandable, but when she put it to her head – I thought she took the act one step too far.

See a Tough Girl Shoot the S&W 500 – Dang Hot!

One of my friends, Spencer, on the Heels and Handguns Facebook page pointed me to this video, and it is amazing.  I just had to share it.  As the cannon in her hands goes off for the first time, Destinee declared, “Hot Damn!”  My thoughts exactly.

Will a Handgun Make a Man Look Taller?

Inquiring minds want to know: Will a handgun make a man look taller? I can tell you, the answer is YES! In an actual scientific study, it has been concluded that a handgun does make a man look taller, more muscular, and overall larger in body size. (Like any of us needed one more reason to go get a gun!)

In one part of the study, participants (panel A) rated the height and size of men holding a 45 caliber handgun, a drill, a small handsaw, and a caulking gun. Another group of participants (panel B) rated the height, size, and muscularity of men holding a .357 caliber handgun, a drill, a large handsaw, and a caulking gun. A third group of participants (panel C) rated the height, size, and muscularity of men holding a kitchen knife, a paintbrush, and a toy squirt gun.  In this study, the photographs presented to participants in color, were resized so that the objective dimensions of each hand displayed on the participant’s computer screen remained constant across all images.

The results did show that the men holding the handgun were estimated to be taller than the men holding the drill, the small handsaw, and the caulking gun.  There could be deeper psychology at work here.  When a man is taller in our society, they are perceived to be more successful, and generally have an easier time ascending up the career ladder.  Does this type of bias have anything to do with this study?  Looking at people holding all these items, would the power of the gun verses the power of a home improvement tool lead you toward thinking the one with the gun was taller, because in a fight they would likely be victorious?

Knowing that an individual possesses a potentially lethal object, be it a handgun or a kitchen knife, led the U.S. participants to generally conceptualize the target individual as taller and larger in overall body size and muscularity.

Ok, the next question is for the ladies:  Do you think that high heels AND a hand gun will make a lady look taller?  (I can tell you the answer to THIS question is yes! We do not need a study on that one.)

This study was conducted by Daniel M. T. Fessler, Colin Holbrook, and Jeffrey K. Snyder for the Department of Anthropology and Center for Behavior, Evolution, and Culture, University of California in Los Angeles, CA see the entire report and their findings here.