Saturday, December 7, 2013

Today In History - The Sneak Attack On Pearl Harbor

At 7:48 Hawaiian time,  on Sunday, December 7, 1941, the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor commenced. It was the worst single attack on U.S. soil prior to the attack on 9/11, specifically the attack on the World Trade Center in which 2,606 people perished (not including those on the plane). At Pearl Harbor, there were 2,402 Americans killed and 1,282 wounded, many ships of the Pacific fleet were sunk and otherwise damaged, hundreds of aircraft were destroyed and many ground installations likewise. The attack brought President Franklin D. Roosevelt to call on Congress for a declaration of war on Japan, on December 8, 1941, the very next day.

It was a quick and almost unanimous decision on the part of the president and Congress to declare war. At 12:30 in the afternoon, on December 8, 1941, Roosevelt commenced a brief speech, of  7 minutes, to a joint session of Congress in which he made the eternal statement that December 7, 1941 was a date that would live in infamy.

Immediately after the speech, the issue was brought to a vote, first in the Senate and then in the House. The vote in the Senate was unanimous, 82-0, the vote in the House was 388 to 1 (the first woman elected to Congress, an avowed pacifist, was the sole no vote). The votes were lightning quick and a declaration of war achieved by 1:10 PM. It took only 33 minutes, from the conclusion of Roosevelt addressing Congress, to the completion of the vote and for war to be declared on Japan! The president signed it within three hours. The speech and declaration of war brought applause from our elected representatives. Only Great Britain declared war on Japan faster than did the U.S. after the attacks of December 7th. (British territory in the Pacific has also been attacked simultaneously.) Winston Churchill essentially lived up to his promise to declare war on Japan within an hour of any attack by Japan on the United States.

The attack on Pearl Harbor brought about instant and dramatic change to the spirit of Americans - a nation that had been very politically divided at the time.

"It was a most dramatic spectacle there in the chamber of the House of Representatives. On most of the President's personal appearances before Congress, we found applause coming largely from one side—the Democratic side. But this day was different. The applause, the spirit of cooperation, came equally from both sides. ... The new feeling of unity which suddenly welled up in the chamber on December 8, the common purpose behind the leadership of the President, the joint determination to see things through, were typical of what was taking place throughout the country." (source)

What was taking place throughout the country was national unity! The speech by Roosevelt was broadcast on the radio and was the most listened to radio broadcast in U.S. history. The peace and isolationist movements crumbled. Charles Lindberg (remember him, first to fly non-stop across the Atlantic Ocean from the USA to Europe), a leading anti-war proponent and critic of President
Roosevelt said:

 "Now [war] has come and we must meet it as united Americans regardless of our attitude in the past toward the policy our Government has followed. ... Our country has been attacked by force of arms, and by force of arms we must retaliate. We must now turn every effort to building the greatest and most efficient Army, Navy and Air Force in the world." (source)

Recruitment for the U.S. military was at an all time pace.  Never before, not even after the U.S. got involved in WWI, had it been so high, recruiting stations were kept open round the clock. Civilians agreed to rationing to support the war effort and worked toward that end causing U.S. manufacturing of military ordnance to boom. The national spirit had risen to heights never before seen and never seen since and it lasted until the war's end in 1945. It was a different world, most certainly a different country, populated by a different class of people - United Americans.

All the best,
Glenn B


Carrying At Home - Are You Wise To Do So Or Crazy Not To

With the amount of crime that takes place inside of homes - such as burglaries, robberies, rapes, kidnappings, home invasions, assaults, killings and more, I think that if you carry at all, you may have to be crazy not to do so at home. I don't always do it myself (I just may be a bit crazy - lol) but I have started to do so much more frequently as of late (I must be getting better). The reason I have been doing so - all the home invasions I keep hearing and reading about and all the violent crimes associated with them. Apparently I am not alone, as I discovered in the forums at NY Firearms tonight. In fact, there was a thread there about just that topic. It contained a link, to a blog-post, in which the author explains why you should consider carrying while home. He makes some very valid points.


Who would be safer during a home invasion - the person with his or her guns locked up in a safe, or put in some other out of the way and not readily accessible place, OR the person who has the firearm on his or her person or within arms reach (or at least within the same room) at all times while home? I am fairly certain it would be the latter and that is one of the excellent points made in the Concealed Nation piece.


If you don't think so, then just look at the two photos and tell me, do you think if you had your gun where the first gal has them that you would be safer than the second one pictured. During a home invasion, a gun in the hand is worth a hundred of them locked in your difficult to access secure gun-safe down in the basement (or wherever). I would safely bet that if your front door got knocked in while you were watching television, or up in your bedroom, you would never be able defend yourself, like the gal with the one in her hand, if you had your guns locked in your safe as pictured above.

Of course, there are other considerations, especially I you have young children or anyone with a mental handicap (like someone with dementia or other mental illness) in your home. You certainly do not want to leave guns around in unsecured drawers or on shelves, or on tabletops for them to have ready access to your firearms. Yet, you do want to have ready access to them in the event that thugs break in and try to do harm to you or your loved ones. You can manage that by keeping the gun on you at all times or by keeping your gun within ready reach at all times but secured in a quick open lock-box. There are many types of quick access lock boxes that essentially open at the touch of your fingertips. Some use biometrics and others use fingertip combination locks. Others use keys. Some hold handguns only, others can hold long guns, handguns or both and some only rifles or shotguns.

They can be fairly expensive but if you have little curious minds, attached to wandering hands, you may want to strongly consider getting one to secure your guns while leaving them almost instantly accessible to you to protect your precious loved ones. Models of box type, quick open, gun vaults are numerous and come in many different sizes and of many different security grades (such as steel thickness and locking device). Some have spring, piston or drop open doors, others have doors that require you to manually open them. As for the locking/unlocking mechanisms, some of the types out there are: Biometric Lock, Digital Combination Lock, Push Button Combination Lock, Key-lock. Those just mentioned were for handguns but there are similar box vaults for long arms too. In addition, some manufacturers make what are in essence sleeve like vaults, that fit over the action, for rifles and shotguns.

All of these come in a wide price range from under $75 to well into the mid to high hundreds of dollars. The bottom line is that you want them to secure the gun from unauthorized household access but be easy and fast to open should you need your gun in an emergency. Bear in mind, most of these are not really meant as very serious security to prevent theft of your firearms. They are meant for easy access by you during an emergency while at the same time offering security from unauthorized household members or guests. Albeit, depending on type and model, they also offer various levels of security against theft from almost nil to fairly secure, in my opinion but for security from burglaries or theft, I would prefer a large, heavy, stand-up, fire-safe, type gun vault.

If you don't carry in your home but keep your gun in a lock box at all times, or even just keep it in a lock box some of the time, you may want to consider more than one lock box in the home with a gun in each at all times. If you have only one gun, you may want a lock box that you can move around with you. Or you could keep several lock boxes, one in each room, so you can rotate your sole gun as you move from area to area in your home.

If you are also going to carry while in the home, you will want to make sure you have a very comfortable and secure holster. Making sure you pistol is secure, such as having a holster with multiple retention methods, will also help avoid accidents by way of children (or others) easily getting hold of it. For example, if you should fall asleep watching television or not be paying attention when being playful with your kids and the holster is not secure, it could end up tragically. A secure holster also will help keep your handgun it more secure in the event of an attempted gun takeaway by a criminal and his accomplices (yes they usually are more than one in number).

Carrying in your home, or having a gun at the ready within arms reach (or at least always near you in the same room you are in) will give you an edge. Using a secure holster or quick open secure gun vault, will help keep you and your loved ones safer from accidents but also will help keep you ready to assure you and your loved ones are safer from violent criminals. You will have to make up your own minds: Carrying At Home - Are You Wise To Do So Or Crazy Not To!

All the best,
Glenn B