Seattle Weekly writer/editor Nina Shapiro is at it again in her “Daily Weekly” blog, demanding that the Legislature do something in the wake of a sixth law enforcement death since Oct. 31. Five of those officers, including the only female police officer killed in the line of duty anywhere in the country during 2009, were murdered with handguns. The sixth, Seattle officer Timothy Brenton, was killed with a Kel Tec sport-utility rifle, fitted with an after-market magazine. That particular firearm does not fit any known description of an "assault rifle" except that somebody in the Seattle Police Department called it an "assault rifle" and anti-gunners, including Shapiro, landed on that like flies on horse puckey.


"You would think that if ever there was a political climate favorable for gun control legislation, it would be here. With the state reeling from the third police killing in two months, legislators surely feel the need to do something. A proposed assault weapons ban, to be introduced in the coming legislative session, would seem like a place to start."—Nina Shapiro

And what is Shapiro’s solution to these slayings? Ban so-called “assault weapons.” Why is that her solution? Because it is the "solution" (make that panacea) offered up by Washington CeaseFire, an organization claiming some 6,000 members – as opposed to the estimated 90,000 National Rifle Association members in Washington, 15,000 members of the Washington Arms Collectors, thousands of members and supporters of the Bellevue-based Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms and Second Amendment Foundation, and an estimated 1-million-plus gun owners, including some 240,000 citizens licensed to carry concealed firearms.

"Let's agree to get together with Gov. Christine Gregoire in the same room to see how we can work together to reduce the number of deaths here in Washington state. The NRA is welcome to bring along any other elected state official of its choosing. We'll put in writing the right of law-abiding citizens to own handguns and nonmilitary hunting rifles, providing we work together to save lives."—Ralph Fascitelli, 2006

Shapiro has been giving ample ink to Washington CeaseFire’s Ralph Fascitelli, a New England transplant with an agenda. He wants “common-sense” gun laws adopted in Washington State, which already has effective statutes against murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault, rape, firearms possession by convicted felons and the criminally insane, firearms possession at schools, in courtrooms, prisons, jails, mental institutions and several other places. Washington is home to the original state preemption statute which has become a model for several other states.

Fascitelli is the guy who proposed, back in April 2006 that gun owners come to the table and allow him to “put in writing the right of law-abiding citizens to own handguns and nonmilitary hunting rifles.” That translates to giving up their existing right to own semiautomatic sport-utility rifles, which are used by tens of thousands of Evergreen State residents for competitive target shooting, predator control and hunting, varmint hunting, recreational shooting and home defense.

Besides, gun owners know they have the right to own handguns and rifles, and it is constitutionally protected by Article 1, Section 24 of the state constitution. Of what possible use would it be to write that down again? Washington CeaseFire has no authority to negotiate civil rights.

Why is it that when the gun prohibitionist lobby invites gun owners to sit down and negotiate, they never bring anything to the table other than expectations that gun owners will give up some of their rights?

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel famously noted, “Never waste a good crisis.” That has been repeated over the years by Bill and Hillary Clinton and others now in the Obama administration, all of them devout anti-gunners. I predicted some weeks ago in this space, following another Shapiro column, that Fascitelli would exploit these police killings to push his gun prohibitionist agenda. As Shapiro continually whines, he can’t seem to get any traction in Olympia.
Washington CeaseFire’s website calls upon citizens to “Support proposed common-sense firearm legislation” without defining what that is. The question has been asked here before, without an answer. As the year draws to a close, perhaps instead of requesting a definition, maybe gun owners should demand one.
Would CeaseFire’s “common-sense” gun law package include any or all of the following?

· Registration of firearms and licensing of gun owners;
· A ban on semi-automatic sport-utility rifles;
· Repeal of state preemption, allowing cities and counties to set their own laws;
· A limit on the number of firearms someone can own;
· Repeal of the state’s concealed carry statute;
· Ban firearms use by anyone under age 16;
· Prohibit open carry of firearms.



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