Via Power Line, I see that the Strib has noted the fact that 100,000 (currently 103,000) Minnesotans have carry permits…
…which was first reported in this space on May 31; well over 1z00,000 Minnesotans currently have active carry permits.
The Strib is finally on the story – and there’s good news, and there’s bad news.
The bad news? They – in this case. reporter Larry Oakes – still can’t resist a bunch of the usual clichés:
[A carry permittee named Pat Cannon] not a vigilante. He’s not a nut. He’s just another average Minnesotan who has acquired the power to kill.
Why do I suspect the Strib newsroom is the only place, besides a DFL meeting (PTR) that “Vigilante” or “Nut” would have been suggested? I mean, you get used to it when the MSM talkes about gunnies – this sense that underneath it all it’s just a little “off”.
But here’s the good news – Oakes balances things out relatively fairly:
[Permit training instructor Evam] Easton said the permit holders he knows “are lawyers, real estate agents — especially women who have to show houses alone — landscapers, a video engineer, a network technician, a radio show host [Quite a few of the, actually - Ed.], a couple of legislators, a mediator who talks divorced couples through sticky situations … a lot of typical, average careers.”
And to his credit, Oakes finds a couple of “experts” who are not completely ludicrous on the subject:
“America has long had a gun culture, but now it’s becoming a carry culture,” said Adam Winkler, a professor at the UCLA School of Law and author of “Gunfight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America.”
Winkler traces the roots of the shift to fears spawned by the social and political upheaval of the 1960s.
“People began to see the gun as something for personal protection, not just hunting,” Winkler said. Meanwhile, as gun-control advocates pushed to get handguns banned in Washington, D.C. and Chicago, the NRA “changed overnight” in 1977, Winkler said, from stressing support for hunters to focusing like a laser on the right to bear arms.
Those factors helped trigger a handgun rights movement that swept the country, and by 2011, 37 states adopted so-called “shall issue” permit laws, taking away officials’ discretion to deny permits to people who are of legal age, sound mind and have no criminal history.
Not a bad whack at history for an MSM piece, all in all. And it’s perhaps a sign that the Twin Cities media is growing in office ever so slightly that Andrew Rothman is getting as many calls as some of the more risible antis:
Rothman said it’s no surprise that a greater proportion of permit holders live where the gun culture is generations deep.
“If you grew up in Minneapolis, it’s easy to believe that guns are just plain trouble,” he said. “But you don’t have that out in the country, and the square miles are huge. If you have a dangerous situation, the police can be 30 minutes or an hour away.”
And Oakes does in fact manage to get outside the traditional envelope of media sources:
[A woman], a 40-year-old professional from the Twin Cities, asked that her name be withheld for the same reason she started carrying: A man with a violent history is stalking her.
She got a restraining order, but even the judge who signed it told her it wouldn’t necessarily protect her. So both she and her husband got permits and carry.
“I don’t want to ever have to use it, and I would rather not have the responsibility,” she said.
So so far I have to give kudos to Oakes.
And I can’t fault Oakes for his editorial drive to lend some balance to what has, so far, been a favorable story about Minnesota carry permittees.
But I saw the next section head…:
A mixed record
…and my Martensdar went off.
“Martensdar” is that feeling any Minnesota Second Amendment activist gets when Heather Martens is about to be cited as an expert source in the Twin Cities media (see also: Jacobsdar, Daveschultzdar).
And lemme tell you, my Martensdar is one finely-tuned machine:
The law “has not been a net benefit to our society in any way,” said Heather Martens, executive director of Protect Minnesota — Working to End Gun Violence. “They promised that if lots of people had guns everybody would be safe. Here just [recently] we had a 5-year-old child killed while sleeping on a couch. I think we were sold a bill of goods.”
Maybe Oakes is new to the guns beat. Or maybe – this is actually the most likely – he can’t find another anti-gun “expert” in the Twin Cities. It’s plausible that Oakes doesn’t know the single fact anyone needs to know about Heather Martens.
So here it is: If Heather Martens says or writes something about guns, it’s a lie.
This blog has been documenting Heather Martens’ serial perfidy for almost a decade. Her “Group” (it’s not a group), “Protect Minnesota”, has just changed its name, because after almost a decade nobody took her seriously under the old name, “Citizens for a “
Safer” Supine Minnesota”.
And she’s in traditional form with the statement above, with two toxic lies in one paragraph:
- Nobody, but nobody, “promised that if lots of people had guns everybody would be safe”. We showed with a preponderance of evidence that we’d be safer - and we are. Violent crime is down in Minnesota – especially the parts with the strongest gun culture.
- The five year old was not killed by a carry permittee. He was killed by a juvenile (you need to be 21 to get a permit, and 18 to buy a gun legally, which I’m pretty certain the gun involved in the murder was not) on a block that was in effect a self-contained criminal enterprise, among a group of a adults among which one might suspect few would qualify for a carry permit (due to criminal records), in a city that was, and remains, hostile to the law-abiding gun owner.
But that’s not all.
There’s some even more misleading information in Martens’ contribution to Oakes’ piece.
More on Thursday.