Wednesday, February 18, 2004

I will be severely dissappointed in donations to the NRA from South Dakota residents do not decline after this.

"NRA distances itself from South Dakota Guns Owners group"

That's usually a good sign that the group in question is on the right track.

"RAPID CITY -- The National Rifle Association wants no part of a Rapid-City-based pro-gun group that charged Gov. Mike Rounds with supporting the confiscation of private firearms and drew an angry rebuke from state legislators for its aggressive lobbying tactics."

lmao. Of course the NRA doesn't want any part of aggressive lobbying tactics - after all, that might lead to a pro-gun victory.

"David Conway of Black Hawk, legislative affairs director for the NRA-affiliated South Dakota Shooting Sports Association, said Monday that the NRA had no connection to the group South Dakota Gun Owners and doesn't approve of its lobbying style. 'Their methods at the Capitol are not our methods,' Conway said. 'We choose to have a working relationship with state officials, whereas they choose to attack'. "

Working relationship usually means they'll stab gun owners in the back if it'll get them a little more clout in the capitol.

But let me get this starigh: in situations where state legislators are attacking a persons' Right to Arms the NRA would rather sit down & have a few drinks with them than call them for the treasonous bastards they are? The situation may be different, but the philosophy is not different than Chamberlin's diplomatic strategy with Hitler.

"Conway said he was concerned that people were associating the NRA with South Dakota Gun Owners and the organization's extremist rhetoric. Conway said South Dakota Gun Owners' spokesmen Ray Lautenschlager and his son, Zachary, have distorted the facts about legislative proposals and the positions of Rounds and some legislators on gun rights."

Extremist rhetoric? What? Were they quoting some constitution again? But in all fairness, the NRA has done much more distorting of 'facts' concerning gun laws than any other group that claims to be pro-gun. But I really wonder about the charge that SDGO is distorting the position of politicians on gun Rights; this is simply because I feel the NRA doesn't mean gun Rights, but rather refers to their willingness to cut deals with the NRA. It'd be interesting to see exactly what's going on.

"They come from a radical standpoint. They're on a perpetual fund-raising mission, too," Conway said. "They were out misinforming people in the state. The governor isn't out to grab anyone's guns."

Hold up!. Now wait a damn minute. The NRA...the N friggin R friggin A is accusing someone of being on a perpetual fund raising mission? That's like a convicted rapist accusing an octogenerian with erectile dysfunction of being a threat to women! Hell, even those I know who agree (for one reason or another) with the NRA get tired of getting calls & letters urging them to become members - especially after they've joined.

& again, the NRA shouldn't accuse anyone of misniforming poeple on gun related issues. Consequently their reassurances about the governor are not comforting.

"The Lautenschlagers maintain that their criticisms of Rounds and some legislators are based on their support for anti-gun legislation that threatens Second Amendment freedoms. They deny distorting any facts or trying to intimidate legislators, beyond expressing their views and holding lawmakers accountable for their votes."

Ya see, the legislation only threatens a gun owners Rights. It doesn't threaten the NRA's clout so therefore it's not really anti-gun.

"Let those who are making allegations of misinformation produce the evidence,' Zachary Lautenschlager said. 'We stand behind the truth of our information."

Ah, truth. Oddly enough it almsot rhymes with proof. I wonder if the NRA has either one?

"Some lawmakers complained about the manner in which they told their version of the truth. Republican Rep. Joni Cutler of Sioux Falls considered one e-mail from a member to be a threat and turned it over to authorities. Lautenschlager questions that because Cutler has declined to reveal what was said in the e-mail."

I have very little sympathy for a lawmaker who feels threatened because of holding a position contrary to the Rights of the people. That being said if it was threatening it should be investigated. But it is suspicious that claims of a threat are made but the details are withheld.

"Republican Rep. Larry Rhoden of Union Center, a hunter and longtime gun-rights supporter, said his family was disturbed at home by rude telephone calls from South Dakota Gun Owners supporters. Conway said that kind of lobbying reflects poorly on the entire pro-gun movement."

Hunter or Fuddite? In any case a legislator should be disturbed by rude calls if he supports legislation that would curtail a citizens' Rights. Again, I have no sympathy for the legislator.

I wonder if he would complain if he got angry calls because he was supporting a measure to make black people drink from seperate water fountains? would he then also claim it reflected badly on the civil rights movement?

"They were nailing and going after people who, for many, many years, had been my strongest supporters in the Capitol,' Conway said. 'I've never had even the slightest anti-gun legislation from these people they've been condemning."

So he's upset about his "...stongest supporters..." being heatedly questioned as to their stance on a bill that would infringe upn the Rights of the people. Does he not have a clue as to why people may feel so passionate about a law that would infringe upon their Rights?

& it is one thing to "...never [have]...anti-gun legislation..." from a legislator, but taken that at face value it simply means that his "supporters" have never sponsoered anti-gun legislation. It does not mean they never voted for it once it was introduced. & still we are left with the definition of "anti-gun". I'm quite sure the NRA's explanation would be markedly different from mine.

"Zachary Lautenschlager said he and his father couldn't control every contact a member of the organization made with legislators. But he believes most were done with 'polite phone calls and signed postcards."

That's a good point. Exactly how many rude &/or threatening calls were made as oppossed to polite &/or non-threatening calls?

"As for the implication that he and his dad are stirring emotions to raise funds, Lautenschlager said they are both volunteers. They run the organization out of an office in Ray Lautenschlager's business in Rapid City, Zachary said.
As for fund-raising, he said 'every organization raises money, including the NRA."

Especially the NRA. Lapiere's 6 figure salary doesn't grow on trees ya know.

"Lautenschlager said South Dakota Gun Owners is an unincorporated, nonprofit organization. A proclamation on its Web site,, says it is 'South Dakota's only no-compromise gun-rights organization."

No wonder the NRA is trying to distance itself.

"Before the legislative session, the group sent a letter to gun owners criticizing Rounds for defending a 'tyrannical law' previously approved by the state Legislature and former Gov. Bill Janklow to allow the state to confiscate private property during situations deemed emergencies.
The revision of state law came in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and was promoted as a way to strengthen state authority to act in such situations. Rounds, a hunter and gun owner himself, said it was a never a threat to private gun owners, even though some guns might be seized, at least temporarily, under extreme situations."

Some guns might be seized temporaily? Wait a sec - I thought the NRA said the gov. wasn't going to seize anyone's guns?

The law in question seems similar to laws in other states that provide for confiscation of firearms during an emergency.

But this is a threrat to private gun owners. Anytime the state says they may seize your firearms that's a threat. A very serious threat & one that should not be ignored.

"The South Dakota Gun Owners letter called the law a 'blatant trampling of the Bill of Rights' and asked for financial contributions to help 'stop this outrageous denial of property and gun rights."

& the NRA distances itself from that?

"The Lautenschlagers worked with Rep. Tim Begalka, R-Clear Lake to introduce HB1287, which would have prohibited seizures of any property, including firearms."

Don't they know that only the NRA is suppossed to work to get legislation introduced?

"Rounds pushed his bill to clarify that firearms would not be among the items that could be seized in such situations"

Of course the flaw with Rounds bill is that while the people can't have their firearms stolen from them by the state, then they have the means to prevent theft of other property. Bet he didn't think of that did he?

Sounds to me though that the bill protecting firearms specifically as well as other property would be more desirable.

"Legislators killed HB1287 in a House committee. Rounds' proposal, SB212, passed the House and a Senate committee and has action pending on the Senate floor."

Killing a non-NRA pro-gun bill in committee. Hmm, where have I heard that before?

"Begalka said he knows the existing law would never threaten firearms while Rounds was governor.
'The main focus was for the future,' he said. 'Thirty or 50 years from now, we don't know who the governor will be."

Well he makes a good point, but personally I wouldn't want anyone having that kind of power, whether he's a decent person or not. I think the trust in the current governor is misplaced.

"Begalka said he believes the Lautenshlagers are sincere in their work to protect the private ownership of guns. But he also understands why some legislators are upset with their tactics.
'The Lautenschlagers have been a little too loose with words on some of their mailings, a little bit too far out there,' he said. 'I believe they are very sincere and genuine. They're just a little too extreme for something in the Legislature."

I take this to mean they spoke the truth, politicians got uncomfy & the NRA got pissed.

"Zachary Lautenschlager said he and his dad are representing gun owners who need a strong, uncompromising voice. And they won't be run out of the Capitol by criticism, he said.
'We are not done,' he said. 'South Dakota Gun Owners is not finished."

That means there's still hope for South Dakota.

Here's the link to South Dakota Gun Owners

Here's SDGO's alert on Rep. Tim Begalka's HB1287. Outside of the bogus quote often attributed to Washington I don't see anything extreme in the language. Sure, they suggest contacting the reps at home on the week ends, but until the laws they pass onyl apply 9 to 5 while we're at work I don't see this as unreasonable.

Here's SDGO's alert on Gov. Rounds' SB212. Again other than the bogus quote attributed to Washington I don't see what's so bad.

Here's the SDGO's after action report on the bill they supported being killed in committee.

& thanks to Say Uncle who was again faster on the draw than I was.

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