Biden Announces Modest Actions On Guns

President Joe Biden announces modest steps intended to curb gun violence

President Joe Biden announces modest steps intended to curb gun violence
President Biden announced a series of modest steps today aimed at curbing gun violence.

“Gun violence in this country is an epidemic, and it’s an international embarrassment,” said Biden during his announcement.

From the New York Times:

Mr. Biden said the Justice Department would issue a proposed rule to curb the proliferation of so-called ghost guns — kits that allow a gun to be assembled from pieces with no serial numbers. The intention of the rule would be to require that the components in the kits have serial numbers that would allow them to be traced and for the weapons to be legally classified as firearms, with the buyers subjected to background checks.

Mr. Biden also said he would require that when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace transforms a pistol into a short-barrel rifle, that weapon is subject to the requirements of the National Firearms Act. The gunman in the Boulder, Colo., shooting last month used a pistol with an arm brace, making it more stable and accurate, he said.

Mr. Biden said the Justice Department would also publish model “red flag” legislation for states. The measure would allow police officers and family members to petition a court to temporarily remove firearms from people who may present a danger to themselves or others.

With no serial numbers, ghost guns are virtually untraceable making them appealing to criminals and extremists who want weapons that don’t require background checks.

Biden can’t unilaterally pass a red flag law without Congress approving it first. But providing a blueprint for such legislation might help pass such laws in states that want to enact similar laws.

And speaking of Congress, the president did urge the lawmakers to pass a number of reforms including banning assault rifles, requiring background checks for guns purchased at gun shows and more.

Read the full article here.

News Round-Up: February 28, 2020

(image via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: Woofy Joe Blizzard (above) thinks he looks ‘thick’ in this pic??? If only I were so ‘thick.’ Follow Joe on Instagram here. #beardgoals

New York Times: Stocks tumbled for a seventh consecutive day on Friday, with the S&P 500 index falling about 0.8 percent, bringing its loss for the week to more than 11 percent. It was the worst weekly decline for stocks since the 2008 financial crisis.

Washington Post: California has a second case of community transmission of the coronavirus, a 65-year-old resident of Santa Clara County who has no known history of travel to countries hit hard by the outbreak, people familiar with the case said Friday. There is also no apparent connection between the new patient and anyone else with the disease caused by the covid-19 virus.

KIT212: Kenneth rounds up the what’s what in local gay publications like Matt Spike on the cover of London’s QX Magazine (below).

(via QX Magazine)

WDRB: Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear defended a photograph of him posing with drag queens at a gay rights rally and accused a Republican lawmaker of using homophobic tactics by displaying the photo at a recent campaign rally while accusing Democrats of corrupting traditional values. Beshear, a Democrat, told reporters Thursday that he would pose for the photo again, saying he was practicing his faith to treat everyone with respect.

ABC News: A 19-year-old was taking a video of herself with a gun when she allegedly shot her 10-year-old nephew in the abdomen by accident, according to Texas authorities. Caitlyn Smith, 19, has been arrested and charged with serious bodily injury to a child — a second-degree felony.

New Music: Lady Gaga released “Stupid Love,” the first single off her highly anticipated sixth studio album. The single is accompanied by a music video that was shot entirely on an iPhone 11 Pro and directed by Daniel Askill.

The not-so-good news: the music video is kinda silly, the costumes look like something out of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and the choreography is just so-so.

The good news: Gaga is back in dance mode a la “Born This Way.” Her vocals are on point, the bop has serious bounce, and it’s all joy and love. This is one of those I’d rather listen to than watch 🙂

Democratic Presidential Candidates Unite For Stronger Gun Laws

Eight of the top Democratic presidential candidates appear in a new video underscoring the need for gun safety.

The gun control organization named after former Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot at point blank range by a maniac, launched the video on Monday.

The candidates featured in the video include former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke; California Sen. Kamala Harris; former Vice President Joe Biden; South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg; Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar; New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker; Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

In the video, the candidates focus on stronger gun laws to prevent school shootings and protect children.

From the Giffords campaign for gun safety:

We deserve a president who listens to the American people, not the NRA.

We deserve a president who takes bold action to make us safer, not one who tweets thoughts and prayers then does nothing.

We deserve a president who fights for stronger gun laws, not gun lobby profits.

2020 Democratic candidates are vying to be that leader.

We sat down with Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Beto O’Rourke, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren to discuss their plans to make us safer from gun violence.

Our kids deserve to be safe at school.

News Round-Up: August 20, 2019

InstaHunk Alex Abramov says the world is not enough - BUT it is such a perfect place to start!

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: Woofy Alex Abramov (above) says “the world is not enough – but it is such a perfect place to start!”

Washington Blade: VH1 has ordered two more seasons of the Emmy Award-winning, dragtastic series, RuPaul’s Drag Race. We can definitely plan on seeing Season 12 of RPDR, as well as a fifth season of, All-Stars.

The Atlantic: Just weeks ago, Donald Trump told the media he supported “meaningful background checks” for gun purchases after the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton. But it appears he has called National Rifle Association (NRA) CEO Wayne LaPierre to say he won’t pursue the issue, even though polls show Americans support the idea by 80+ support.

Vogue: A fan of Mayor Pete Buttigieg, designer Tom Ford reached out to offer some sartorial advice. While the White House hopeful demurred, Ford wasn’t upset. “Obviously he can’t wear my clothes. They’re too expensive, they’re wrong, they’re not made in America. And besides, whatever he’s doing is working. So does anyone need to fuck with it?”

Washington Post: You must read the latest essay from super-smart guy Michelangelo Signorile on Donald Trump’s devastating record on LGBTQ rights.

Out Music: We already know singer/songwriter Wrabel has the ‘magic’ touch when it comes to penning hit songs having written for major artists like Kesha, Pink, and the Backstreet Boys.

So its no surprise this soulful new pop bop from the talented music man, appropriately titled, “Magic,” is a fun, easy on the ears track.

And it’s definitely a departure from his more serious songs like “The Village” and “11 Blocks.” From his upcoming EP due out next month.

New Zealand Parliament Bans Assault Weapons

Less than a month after a white supremacist loon shot up two mosques killing 50 people, New Zealand's lawmakers have banned most automatic and semi-automatic weapons.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern

Less than a month after a white supremacist loon shot up two mosques killing 50 people, New Zealand’s lawmakers have banned most automatic and semi-automatic weapons.

Additionally, components that modify existing weapons were prohibited as well.

From NBC News:

All but one member of New Zealand’s parliament voted Wednesday to change gun laws, less than a month after shooting attack targeting two Christchurch mosques that killed 50 people.

The gun reform bill passed 119-1 after its final reading in Parliament. It must now receive royal assent from the governor general before it officially becomes law.

Brenton Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, was charged with 50 murder charges after the attack on two mosques on March 15.

Around 250,000 people in New Zealand own a total of about 1.5 million weapons.

News Round-Up: February 27, 2019

Bruno the wonder dog

Some news items you might have missed:

• It’s the one year mark since Bruno the wonder dog crossed over the rainbow bridge. I’m celebrating his life today. My remembrance of The Brun here. He was the best dog I’ve ever worked for.

• The United Methodist Church on Tuesday voted to strengthen its ban on gay and lesbian clergy and same-sex marriages stating that “the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching.”

• Results of a new survey indicates if you watch more porn on a regular basis, you’re more likely to be bisexual.

• Openly gay jujutsu fighter, William Seth-Wenzel, just became a world champ as his boyfriend cheered him on.

• Handsome gay college football player Cy Hicks shares with Outsports how coming out made him feel empowered.

• The House passed what many say is the most significant gun control measure in more than two decades on Wednesday when it approved the first of two bills aimed at strengthening the federal background check system for firearms purchases.

• “Call Me Maybe” singer Carly Rae Jepsen proves she’s soooo not a one-hit-wonder dropping two new tracks today: “Now That I Found You” and “No Drug Like Me.”

Check out the totally banging dance track “Now That I Found You” below, and click here for “No Drug Like Me.”

Fox News Poll: Voters Support Commonsense Gun Measures By Wide Margin

A new survey by Fox News finds – by a wide 13-point margin – voters place a higher priority on protecting citizens from gun violence than protecting the rights of gun owners with 53% support and 40% opposing.

The poll also found strong support for specific measures to reduce gun violence, including:

• 91% support requiring criminal background checks on all gun buyers

• 84% support requiring mental health checks on all gun buyers

• 72% support raising the age to buy all guns to 21

• 69% support putting armed guards in schools

• 69% support banning assault rifles and semi-automatic weapons

So,  a poll that “leans conservative” finds 91% support FOR background checks on all gun buyers – why wouldn’t lawmakers at the very least do that?

Oh, right. The NRA will take their money from their congressional pawns if that happens.

Now, how does Donald Trump spin this as “fake news” since it’s a poll done by his favorite TV network?

Trump: “Take The Guns First, Go Through Due Process Second”

During a meeting with Democratic and Republican lawmakers, Donald Trump surprised many when he suggested taking people’s guns away – whether or not it was legal.

From HuffPost:

For years, the National Rifle Association has been warning gun-loving Americans of a president who will take away their firearms, no matter what the Second Amendment says.

On Wednesday, that conservative nightmare became a reality when the current Republican U.S. president, Donald Trump, proposed taking away people’s guns, even without the legal right to do so.

“Take the guns first. Go through due process second,” Trump said at a meeting with Democratic and Republican lawmakers at the White House. “I like taking the guns early.”

Trump said law enforcement officers should specifically have taken the firearms possessed by Nikolas Cruz, the suspected gunman in the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida.

“I think they should have taken them away, whether they had the right or not,” he said.

Imagine if President Obama had said out loud, “Take the guns.”

So, umm, Trumpers – how do you feel about the Trumpeter wanting to “take guns first; do due diligence second?”

Trump surprisingly shamed lawmakers on the age of buying an assault weapon at 18 but not having legal rights to a hand gun until 21 years-old.

“You don’t address it… you know why? Because you’re afraid of the NRA, right?” Trump said today.

Walmart Raises Age To Purchase Guns To 21

Via press release retail giant Walmart says they will voluntarily raise the age restriction for buying firearms and ammunition to 21 years of age.

In light of recent events, we’ve taken an opportunity to review our policy on firearm sales. Going forward, we are raising the age restriction for purchase of firearms and ammunition to 21 years of age. We will update our processes as quickly as possible to implement this change.

In 2015, Walmart ended sales of modern sporting rifles, including the AR-15. We also do not sell handguns, except in Alaska where we feel we should continue to offer them to our customers. Additionally, we do not sell bump stocks, high-capacity magazines and similar accessories. We have a process to monitor our eCommerce marketplace and ensure our policies are applied.

We take seriously our obligation to be a responsible seller of firearms and go beyond Federal law by requiring customers to pass a background check before purchasing any firearm. The law would allow the sale of a firearm if no response to a background check request has been received within three business days, but our policy prohibits the sale until an approval is given.

We are also removing items from our website resembling assault-style rifles, including nonlethal airsoft guns and toys. Our heritage as a company has always been in serving sportsmen and hunters, and we will continue to do so in a responsible way.

Poll: 70% Of Americans Support Stricter Gun Laws

Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz

In the aftermath of the tragic gun massacre in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead, a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS shows increased support for stricter gun laws at its highest level in almost 25 years.

From the survey:

• 70% say they support stricter guns laws; only 27% oppose stricter laws

• The intensity of support is also deepened as 52% of those says they “strongly” support stricter gun laws

• 57% of those who in live in gun-owning households support stricter gun laws

• 57% say they are concerned they or a family member will be a victim of gun violence

• 87% support keeping guns out of the hands of convicted felons or those with mental health issues

• 71% support preventing those under 21-years-old from buying any kind of gun

• 63% support a ban on the sale and possession of high-capacity ammunition magazines

• 46% have a favorable view of the National Rifle Association; 49% hold an unfavorable view – that’s the worst rating for the NRA since 1995

A recent poll by Quinnipiac shows similar results:

• 66% of American voters support stricter gun laws

• 97% support universal background checks for all gun buyers

• 67% support nationwide ban on the sale of assault weapons

• 83% support a mandatory waiting period for all gun purchases