Saturday, September 12, 2009

I Did Not Forget...

...that it was the 8th anniversary of 9/11 yesterday. I know none of us have forgotten. It ate through my gut yersterday thinking about it and I'll leave it at that.

All the best,
Glenn B

Gun Show Report - The Gun Show At Middletown

We hit the road this morning about a half hour later than expected and because of rain added another 15 minutes on top of that. We wound up in the parking lot at the Orange County Fairgrounds at about 0945. I had hoped to be there by 0900 when it opened. No matter though because as it turned out while we had a lot of fun looking at guns we did not buy one. They just did not have anything that I wanted and had something Brendan wanted but I talked him out of it. He was sort of salivating over a Mossberg shotgun with pistol grip. When I explained that it would be about near impossible to practice with that at any local range he saw the light. He started looking at Mossbergs and Remington 870s with either conventional or collapsible stocks. When he realized how much money he had already spent on AK mags (two of them), T-shirts (two of them), an AK-47 bayonet, a pocket knife and 3 bullet key chains he realized he had spent over a $100 and did not have enough left for a shotgun. I told him if he wanted one to go for it but maybe he should first look at some stores like Dicks Sporting Goods or Gander Mountain. I explained to him that when I go to a gun show, unless I see a really great deal on a new rifle, shotgun or pistol I would not buy it at the show because chances are I could get a better deal at a store that sells guns. I also clued him in that mostly I am looking for a good deal on something used at any gun shows I attend. He decided that maybe the old man knows something after all and held off for now.

As for me, I was in the market for some ammo cans and a Marlin XS7. There was not one new Marlin in .308 to be found in the place let alone the specific model I was seeking out. I also wanted some odds and ends like a good bore light, some .50 ammo cans and maybe some gun cleaning supplies. The ammo cans usually go for $6.00 apiece from a certain vendor at this show and today was no exception for single cans at that price. I was disappointed to find out that they were not less expensive if bought in groups of 4 or more. They usually price em at 4 cans for $20 but would not do so today. I bought only 2 of em - all I really needed for now but would have taken 4 had the price been right. I also picked up a field surgical kit (small one in OD pouch with scissors, hemostats, a couple of 18" sutures, and two surgical blades. Not a bad thing to have in with the survival or hiking gear. I don't know if it was a good price on that or not, but you don't see em often so I figured I'd go the $22 for one. As for the bore light - forget about it. All any vendor had was the same junk type I got there last time, or one other type that looked even junkier. I have a junk one already (the thread stripped within a year) and a better one I have had for many years. I will buy a better one at a sporting goods or gun store at a later date. I also brought Brendan a small AK 47 sticker, some strike anywhere matches (impossible to get where I live), and a really neat cut metal sign that you have already seen in the picture herein.

We left at about 1230 and headed out to eat with an idea of maybe going back in. We stopped at Gander Mountain before eating, looked around at prices on rifles and shotguns and left there empty handed too. I was a bit miffed at myself for forgetting my bait bucket and portable air pump. I had wanted to buy some minnows for my turtle tank - fish on the fin for my turtle - gives him exercise as he tries to catch them and nourishment too if he actually does catch any. Oh well, next time for that. After Gander Mountain we got ourselves some nourishment at a Ruby Tuesday. The service was good and the food fair to good. Not bad at all. We then moved onto Dick's Sporting Goods just about right next to the restaurant. It turned out that neither they nor Gander Mountain had the Marlin XS7 in .308. GM had one that was a XS7Y (I imagine that Y stood for youth model as it was shorter in the stock than a regular one). GM also had the XL7 in .30/06. I'll wait for the XS7 in .308 if I get one. We also saw a few Remington 770s and a few Remington 700s. Brendan told me the Remington 700 was supposed to be a great shooter as per an American Rifleman article he had read some time back. Of course, because I would have liked to have read up on them, we don't seem to still have that issue. I also want to do some checking on the Remington 770. They were going for about $300 scoped. The Remington ADL with bull barrel in a dull finish and camo stock was going for about $500 with a $45 or $50 rebate making it even a better deal. They had another Remington 700 with dark blue finish - no bull barrel - but it looked nicer than the ADL and cost more money.

I will be looking again at the Remington 700 though, it looked pretty nice and I will be inquiring about a Marlin XS7 locally too. I may yet buy a rifle in .308 before the weekend is out but now have more decisions to ponder! Then again who knows, if I break from my usual luck of pretty much never winning anything, maybe I will win a rifle in the raffle I am entered in that goes off tomorrow. I am not betting on it though!

After Dick's we headed home. A quicker ride home than it was going to the show and nicer for me because Brendan did the driving on the way home. Allin all it was a good day. There are two things though sort of irking me though that I should have done before leaving the gun show that I neglected to do. One thing I should have done was to look at a Mosin Nagant 91/30 that they had for sale for $89.99 at one table. The problem there was a big jerk who would not let me get in to look at it. He was standing in front of it for over 15 minutes and would not move despite me politely asking him to do so. The dealer heard me ask at that and did not ask the guy to move. Seems he was waiting to buy a rifle for about $50 more than that one while the dealer was already busy with someone else. Oh well, if the dealer did not want another sale that was okay with me. Now it is not the fact that I did not get to look at that rifle that irks me, it is the fact that I did not tell the guy blocking the table to go screw himself.

The other thing I should have done was to have looked at a Remington rifle they had at another table. It was chambered in 30/06 and looked nice on the outside. It had a bent bolt and it looked a lot like some sort of Mosin Nagant and the ticket on it said it was built for Russia by Remington. They were asking $150 for it. I have to look that one up on the Internet tonight. I planned to look at it then sort of forgot when we left, and I suppose I thought we were going back again before shoving off for home but that never happened. Oh well...those rifles I want in .308 were in my sights.

All the best,
Glenn B

Centennial Bridge Shooting (account of shooting corrected)

Check out the video.

A police officer is seen to stop a suspect (of an assault) on a bridge by way of the view from his dashboard camera. The suspect does not obey the commands of the officer and the officer is starting to back away and finally shoots the suspect with a TASER. The TASER shot is ineffective and the suspect then attacks the police officer. They go off camera, and you can hear the police officer struggling and taking punishment as he does so. Then an off duty police officer from another state arrives on scene and renders aid to the uniformed officer. As he renders aid, the uniformed officer is able to draw and fire his service weapon fatally injuring the suspect - all off camera - but from the looks of the uniformed officer when he comes back into view I would have to think the shooting had been justified. Of course I am taking a few other things into consideration. The suspect was much bigger than the police officer, he attacked failed to comply with the legal orders of the officer, he attacked the officer violently, the officer was heard to be gasping and struggling, one of the officers after arrival of the off duty one was heard to command the suspect to cease his attack repeatedly, the audible leads one to believe the suspect kept on attacking, an officer is heard to say something to the effect if you don't stop I'll shoot, shots are fired, the suspect comes back into view of the camera and is now compliant to the commands of the officers. One would probably think, as did I initially, that the off duty officer fired the shots but
this article explains how it came to be that the uniformed officer, the one who was being attacked, actually fired the shots that killed the suspect. The article also explains that the shooting was found to have been justified and gives some more info about how savagely the officer was being attacked saying one of the officer's eyebrows had been bitten off by the suspect.

Imagine what would be the case had there been no video and audio footage of this event. I can assure you there would be marches, there would be tons of accusations or racism against the police officers, Al Sharpton and his gang (or those like him) likely would be protesting (they may be anyway for all I know), there would possibly be race riots. I don't know what is happening as a result of this shooting - maybe all that is taking place despite the video but I don't know one way or the other because this is the first I have heard of this event. Of course, this took place at the end of July this year so if it bad things happened in reaction to the shooting they may have calmed down already. I would hope though that anyone who saw this video realized that the use of deadly force by the officers was in all likelihood necessary and justified.

Now imagine another thing, no matter what else takes place, both of these officers will live with this for the rest of their lives. Because of what they did a man died. Because of what that man did they were forced to do what they did and the suspect died as a result. One of the officers lost his eyebrow because it was bitten off of his face. My bet is that you would not give a second thought to his returning to work - but do exactly that for a moment. Think about having all of that stuff happen to you - your weapon not doing the trick (the TASER), a guy taking control away from you and beating you like a mad man then biting off part of your face, it all probably seeming helpless, then help arriving and still the guy keeps attacking you , then you having to shoot him, then the guy dying. Would you be able to go back to that same job? Man oh man that has got to be a tough thing to do. Remember this is not the army during war - this was just another ho-hum day on the streets of Davenport, IA. My bet is he goes back to the job and does it until he can retire. Don't forget the other officer, it cannot be easy for him either. Yeah they both did right, they were both justified, but I'd be willing to bet my pension both have ethics, morals and an upbringing that told them killing another human is bad. They will live with that forever, hopefully they will be able to come to terms with it. They both did damned good.

A Side Note: Being an LEO for virtually 30 years (my 30th anniversary is on the 28th of this month) I find myself compelled to point out what I think was one mistake, but a big one, that the uniformed officer made in his handling of the suspect (my opinion). He had the suspect climb over the railing and he was between his cruiser and the suspect when the suspect came over the rail. I think it would have been better for the officer to have climbed over toward the suspect from a good distance after he first had him kneel. This way the officer could not have wound up basically pinned between his cruiser, a moving lane of traffic, the rail and the bad guy. Sure the officer could have arranged it so the suspect would have been in that pinned spot, but the officer still would have been in danger from oncoming traffic had the suspect then attacked him. Just look at it again and imagine the suspect had pushed the officer in the other direction and that cars had kept coming. On the other hand, had the officer gone over to the side of the rail on which the suspect had originally been standing there would have been much less potential for the officer to be pinned with moving traffic on one side of him. I am not making note of this to fault the officer but rather to give him and others something to think about when handling a suspect in the future - don't let yourself get boxed in - you need to be able to get away and get some maneuvering room should things go bad.

Of course, as I see it, both of the officers acted in exemplary fashion. I know some may find fault with the big bad officer who used politically incorrect words and cursed at the suspect. To them I say - great a life - that officer was saving one and I don't care what he said while doing it the right way.
All the best,
Glenn B

If I Buy A Rifle Today...

...and then win one in the raffle, for which I have tickets tomorrow - what am I supposed to do? I would almost bet that if I buy one today, I will win one tomorrow, probably something similar to that which I buy today. Oh well - who could complain about that! I guess in answer to my own question I would just have to enjoy shooting both of them.

All the best,
Glenn B