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Linda from Michigan
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May 25, 2010 5:48 am  

While I am in favor of the right and option to bear arms, we have too many incidences of generally well educated, "normal", productive people who go out, get drunk and get riled up - case in point - the man who punched Senator Sanes. What if he had been packing? How do we know that being intoxicated (as so many easily become on a regular basis) he wouldn't have lost his judgment and just pulled out his piece? THAT is what scares me about having registered, licensed concealed weapons permit holders carrying here in the Territory. So many of us don't realize when we've become impaired when we are out at the beach, the casino, the bar down the way for dinner and drinks - or just hanging on the boardwalk having a few with our friends.

And remember - I was raised with guns. My father taught gun safety and was a police officer. Guns were our world as a child. We cleaned them, researched them (old ones), and could dismantle and reassemble them as small children. I am not anti-gun or anti- concealed weapon permit holders.

All I know is something drastic has to happen - we have to hit this full force from multi directions and multi-programs.


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chockman
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May 25, 2010 6:35 am  

If a person drinks enough to cloud his or her judgement,they are not educated in the matters I speak of to Begin with. Responsible fire arm ownership !!!!!!! Walgreen's,royally tweaked me today. I did not shoot them or cut them with my knife. I simply decided I would take my business elsewhere, as I turned red. I was more peeved than I have been in quite a while. Responsible gun ownership means if you break the LAW using poor judgement,you pay the price for your actions. We can not be responsible for every ones actions but I promise you,less guns in the territory will mean a bigger increase in violent crimes. I will not tolerate violent actions in my place of business from anyone.

Who would pay for all the necessary Police to be located everywhere,all the time on the islands. You,me,or anyone else can never be ready for every situation that exist.It is impossible. People who suffer from this mentality are generally referred to as mentally unstable and paranoid. I have suffered as a result of crime on the island,St Croix to be exact. It was only my Wife's $1500.00 dollar camera back in February. They were good,they were fast and it was not in an unpopulated area or beach. I would not have shot them for this crime unless they presented a serious threat to my life but I promise I would not have lost the camera and their ass#&!#$ would have had a pucker factor of extremely high. Again,each and everyone of us is responsible for our individual actions. We can not teach those, that wish not to learn, to better themselves. People surrender themselves to religion all the time and some surrender themselves to the bad side of things. It is that way and it will always be that way. We can preach brotherly and sisterly love all we want to,and in some ways I admire that in some people but you will never eliminate the Punk who wants to take,that which is yours.

As one regular poster on here quotes quite often. Do the best you can in the place you are.


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Neil
 Neil
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May 25, 2010 12:37 pm  

Sorry about your camera chockman, but do you really think it was worth shooting a guy over?
And do you really want to carry a pistol on the beach?
And what if the robber had been packing? Would protecting the camera had been worth your wife's life?

The right to bear arms was a historical necessity. It allowed citizens to muster for state militias using their own weapons.
Soldiers don't need pistols.

That said, the genie is out of the bottle. You can't get rid of handguns, but you can make them very hard to get, heavily penalized if used in a crime or illegally possessed, and require legal owners to store them in a gunsafe.

Thankfully, new restrictions have been working. Gun crimes are WAY DOWN over the past 15 years according to the DOJ and FBI.

Why are they going UP in the USVI? The local FBI and DEA agents will tell you that it is because of the incompetence of the local police force and justice system, as well as, the Caribbean culture's tendency to look the other way.


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STXBob
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May 25, 2010 12:42 pm  

Chockman: There are usually a few well-educated, armed citizens in every crowd. I've spoken to a few of them after restaurant robberies. They didn't draw their weapon because the perps were in and out too fast, and/or they didn't want to risk shooting innocent bystanders. That may have been the case in the ballpark: Too many people to risk shooting. But sometimes bullets and bad guys meet, and VI robbers are killed in the act.


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Bombi
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May 25, 2010 12:43 pm  

It's all about the gansta mentality pervading the youth. Listen to what they listen to, the drugs, the killin, the hoes. Very little value is given to life or authority , respect is about having a gun. A large part of the teens and 20's embrace this attitude. How can that be changed? Doing time is a badge of courage not a deterrent.

I heard a lot of what the Governor said and support most of it. This morning Positive was the only one to make a statement on the Alvin G news. He called out the commissioner and demanded change and a crack down on this senseless crime.
I have no idea but it seems that more patrols and enforcement could make a difference, and a sweep of the public housing might send a message.

This can't be good for the VI's tourism product. I have to wonder why Sen Sanes isn't more vocal about this. Wouldn't this problem fall under Homeland Security, of which he is Chairman.


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terry
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May 25, 2010 2:01 pm  

Before people want to ban all firearms, here is an interesting take and one you don't hear much. . .

As the Supreme Court hears arguments for and against the Chicago, IL Gun
Ban, I offer you another stellar example of a letter (written by a
Marine) that places the proper perspective on what a gun means to a
civilized society. Read this eloquent and profound letter and pay close
attention to the last paragraph of the letter...

The Gun is Civilization by Maj. L. Caudill USMC (Ret)

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and
force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of
either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under
threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two
categories, without exception. Reason or force, that's it.

In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact
through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social
interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the
personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use
reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your
threat or employment of force.

The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal
footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing
with a 19-year old gang banger, and a single guy on equal footing with a
carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity
in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and
a defender.

There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad
force equations. These are the people who think that we'd be more
civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes
it easier for a [armed] mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only
true if the mugger's potential victims are mostly disarmed either by
choice or by legislative fiat--it has no validity when most of a
mugger's potential marks are armed.

People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the
young, the strong, and the many, and that's the exact opposite of a
civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a
successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force
monopoly.

Then there's the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that
otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in
several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the
physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser.
People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don't constitute
lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out
of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal
force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the
stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level.

The gun is the only weapon that's as lethal in the hands of an
octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weight lifter. It simply
wouldn't work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn't both lethal and
easily employable.

When I carry a gun, I don't do so because I am looking for a fight, but
because I'm looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I
cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don't carry it because I'm afraid,
but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn't limit the actions
of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of
those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation...
and that's why carrying a gun is a civilized act.

By Maj. L. Caudill USMC (Ret)

So the greatest civilization is one where all citizens are equally armed
and can only be persuaded, never forced.


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stiphy
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May 25, 2010 2:55 pm  

Terry, that was excellent. I've never fired a gun before but always supported people's rights to do so. That letter put to words the morality that I had in my thoughts to support that position in a very clear and well written manner. The right to own a gun is crucial to living in a society of reason and not force.

Sean


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rks
 rks
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May 25, 2010 3:08 pm  

Everywhere guns are highly regulated gun violence becomes overwhelming. It is very difficult to get a firearm here legally and it's a cinch to get one illegally. It's the same way in Washington DC, Chicago, LA.

I don't like guns personally; I've been shot at, my wife has been injured by shrapnel, my sister-in-law was raped at gunpoint and my father was shot twice and almost died. In none of these cases was the firearm at fault, but each case the stringent regulation and relentless social stigma attached to guns and honest gun owners has sufficiently lowered the standard of human behavior that the perpetrators of these cowardly assaults were confident they could act without fear of confrontation or reprisal.

Laws need to be written to empower the best of us, otherwise they wind up empowering the worst.


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STXBob
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May 25, 2010 3:11 pm  

To the supporters of the eloquent Marine's letter: Even if everybody carried a gun, the bad guys would still prevail by using the element of surprise, like they do now. They assume you might be carrying, and they act accordingly.


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chockman
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May 25, 2010 6:51 pm  

OK first off, Re read my post about the camera. It states ! I would NOT have shot the person for stealing the camera. You do not shoot someone unless your life is threatened or there is the intent of the suspect to inflict permanent bodily damage.

I know everyone speed reads. Pay attention to what is stated. I repeat,I repeat. I WOULD NOT SHOOT A PERSON FOR STEALING A CAMERA. THIS IS A CLASSIC EXAMPLE OF MY STATEMENT TOWARDS A WELL EDUCATED PERSON ON THE SUBJECT OF CARRYING FIREARMS.

I think you would end up in jail for such an act. SELF DEFENSE, WHEN ALL LESSER MEANS HAVE FAILED,IS THE ONLY TIME DEADLY FORCE IS TO BE USED.

I know my grammar sux. BUT YOU DO NOT SHOOT SOMEONE FOR STEALING A CAMERA. Was the suspect a threat ? Well no he had his back to me,he was not on my property,he was fleeing the scene of the crime. And you shot him anyway ? Guess who is going to jail ? Not the thief. Just because a person can lawfully own a firearm does not mean they can do as they please. Some people who can own one,should not own it, if they do not have the sense to properly apply it. Sorry about the rant but I can't let people put words that are not mine,in my mouth. I am very well trained on the subject of Firearms,over 20 years of carry experience in the Continent. Not one time have I ever had to draw a weapon on a person and I hope I never will. But if it comes down to me or them,well they have to go. Firearms with good intent,in the wrong hands are a bad combination.

Great follow up post by the way. My intent is to live a pleasant life with a smile for all who know me. Timing can be everything and sometimes the bad guys win. Bob it could not be stated any better. The people who were in the crowd that were armed used excellent judgement on pulling their firearms. If they felt they should not get involved for whatever their reason was,they applied their weapon properly. JUST BECAUSE A CITIZEN HAS ONE,DOES NOT MEAN HE HAS THE RIGHT OR THE OPPORTUNITY TO APPLY IT. JUDGEMENT CALLS,EVERYONE OF THEM. PERCEPTION OF I HAVE A GUN AND I WILL USE IT,HAS HURT MANY INNOCENT PEOPLE. IF A PERSON CAN NOT HANDLE THE SITUATION,THEY SHOULD NOT GET INVOLVED IN IT.


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GoodToGo
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May 25, 2010 9:04 pm  

Yes, but if everybody is carrying it's only a matter of a short period before the criminal runs into someone with superior tactical training. The criminal would be much more likely to perpetrate fewer crimes during a much briefer 'career' before meeting his/her demise.

To the supporters of the eloquent Marine's letter: Even if everybody carried a gun, the bad guys would still prevail by using the element of surprise, like they do now. They assume you might be carrying, and they act accordingly.


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DUN
 DUN
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May 25, 2010 11:14 pm  

Right on Chockman(tu)
I caught what you were thinking too regarding you never said you would shoot someone on a beach BC of a camera(ass soon as the jackass posted to the contrary)!
Yup, you DO need to be careful here as many here don't get it & try to twist what you are saying(they must think most people are as retarded as they are & will just accept what they said as a valid point!

One here has me calling ALL locals & government workers retarded(I admit they are more so than any I've ever encountered, but that doesn't include ALL) , another, has me throwing many rocks randomly at vehicles in traffic(I can go on & on).
Then there are the really stupid ones whom support them!

Point is, most of us aren't stupid enough to buy it!
And Chockman, you have made that crystal clear!
Thanks!


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chockman
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May 25, 2010 11:40 pm  

Thanks Dun. I remember the rock incident. It's funny how someone can almost cause you to wreck your bike and somehow it becomes your fault. I used to point my index finger at people who made me go into a skid,somehow they thought I was flying the Bird and they always wanted to fight,even though they were in the wrong. Don't you just love it when you are cruising down the road,minding your business and a car comes flying up to a stop sign and slams on their brakes at the last minute.

The one thing I will have to get used to is the fact of honking a horn as a greeting. I can see me now,cruising down the road in Sunny isle,someone will honk in a friendly manner and I will launch right off my floor boards. Maybe I better keep a good supply of my BP Meds.

I did not intend to call the person out,just correct them to the fact that they had misread my post. Drop in and say hi,after the 14Th of June. I'll be at the old Frankie's Lobster reef location, setting up house. If the gates open,I'M there. I should have my bike by the 24Th of June,Big Blue Street Glide. Plenty of good times ahead,I'll deal with the trouble as it comes,and it may never come. You can say that I am into my clients security,everyone will be safe at Above the Cliff. If their not,well I guess I'M dead. See you all soon.


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Juanita
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May 26, 2010 12:29 am  

Hi Chris,
I have a question, and believe me I am NOT suggesting you would shoot someone over a camera, or that your post said you would. But, I've always heard you should never point a gun unless you are prepared to shoot, and take that another step, that you should always shoot to kill. Is that just on TV?


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terry
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May 26, 2010 12:41 am  

Well, if you don't shoot to kill, there will be two sides to the story. Lawyers love that.


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Surfer33
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May 26, 2010 1:32 am  

I'm just amazed at the level of macabre and morose of some of the posters of this board. To have idiots like Juanita and Terry suggest that it's OK to extinguish another fellow human being's life because being "Judge and Jury" they have concluded in their sordid minds that an individual, having a pedigree of being black, poor and incorrigible doesn't deserve to live is absolutely stunning. Our laws are are based on Judeo-Christian tenets. The judicial system is far from perfect, but it's the most civil and fair on this blue planet. It's just not right to propagate "shoot to kill". For those who espouse this behavior, may you rot in hell.


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Neil
 Neil
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May 26, 2010 1:41 am  

would not shoot....

Sorry chockman, I was thrown off your initial statement that you wouldn't shoot somebody for stealing your camera by your Dirty Harry follow up comment: " but I promise I would not have lost the camera and their ass#&!#$ would have had a pucker factor of extremely high. "

Sounded like shooting words to me!

Everywhere guns are highly regulated gun violence becomes overwhelming. It is very difficult to get a firearm here legally and it's a cinch to get one illegally. It's the same way in Washington DC, Chicago, LA.

This would be true if one ignored the FBI's crime stats. Over the last ten years, crimes and gun violence have shrunk significantly. It would also be true if NYC, Chicago, DC and LA had high crime statistics, but actually, they don't. You're much more likely to get shot or mugged here in the USVI than on the streets of many of America's biggest cities. (DC is another story, what a swamp, but the problem there is not immigrants, it's poverty and years of neglect)

Interestingly, NYC has the 3rd highest foreign born population, and doesn't even crack the crime top 20 cities.
LA, which has the HIGHEST foreign born population is much safer than Dallas, Houston and Indianapolis. Yet isn't Texas where they revere the gun and have carry laws? http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004902.html

What you said would also be true if you ignore all the countries where handguns are illegal or very hard to get (like Europe) and gun violence is far less than it is here in the US.

Here's a mindblower on that respect: Mexico's murder by gun rate is only 5/100ths of a percent different than the US rate per capita.
http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_mur_wit_fir_percap-crime-murders-firearms-per-capita No wonder they feel at home here *-)


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anjell
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May 26, 2010 2:12 am  

Neil,

I am sending you a PM. I kinda like the way you think, in some respects.


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lily1025
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May 26, 2010 3:45 am  

i am more than supportive of your post..it sickens me !! but you say email or call your senators THAT IS PART OF THE PROBLEM ..which senators do i call or email none of them represent any of us directly THAT IS WHYWE NEED DISTIRICTING ON STX..make these senators acoutable to a specifc area of the island and a specific group of constituencies[voters]..interestingly enough..my OPINION or should i say myPERSONAL perception is those of us who live here always equate the high crime rate to"drug related,amongst themeselves,projects gangs etc" but the sad reality it has now spread out amongst the whole island i have never regarded canegada ball park as a place where projects or gang related activity exsists BUT the reality is it is only about 5 min away from where peter desjardins was killed by gun fire...we need and we NEED NOW a national guard presence everywhere day and night .just returnedfrom san juan today and have noticed a distinct police prescence but also a milatary prescene rifles in arm almost every where


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chockman
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May 26, 2010 4:01 am  

First off there is no need for name calling and the only truly stupid question is one that a person does not ask. There are many situations that I could put anyone of you in and you would have to make the decision of whether to shoot or not to shoot,it is called training for a reason.

You do not fire a warning shot if you decide to shoot,remember you the shooter are the one who is ultimately responsible for the bullets that come out of the weapon. I have in fact been apprehended by gun point,Border Patrol,County sheriffs deputies,and local Police all aimed their handguns at me, if I had made one stupid move they would have shot me. I was on a training Sniper exercise and had a high power rifle slung on my shoulder. Just because these officers were on high alert that did not give them the right and I damn sure was not going to give them opportunity to shoot me. I commended them for their response after the situation resolved.

Last but not least is the fact that you do not shoot to kill,you simply shoot for center mass of the target and the Torso just happens to be your largest target to aim at. You shoot to stop the adversaries actions,but you had better be right in making your judgement call. You can laugh at me,call me a tattooed freak or whatever you like,I won't shoot you for your opinions. I will however share any knowledge on the subject of responsible firearm ownership to any of you who may ask. I know someone will ask the question of. Who is this know it all guy ? I don't know it all and I may not be able to answer all of your questions but I will share what I have.


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lily1025
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May 26, 2010 4:40 am  

"who moniters the house arrests bracelets ???? probably the aunt, uncle or cousin police officer of the person under house arrest we need to get real people about the coruption and lack of integtrety of SOME OF THE POLICE OFFICIALS and so does the governor


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chockman
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May 26, 2010 5:54 am  

Juanita sorry about the reply but I received some really good news in the middle of my posting and I got a little side tracked.

To point a weapon at a suspect does not mean you actually have to shoot them. That is the same way I grew up,we took firearm safety very seriously. Just because you are in fear, or high alert , does not mean that you will shoot just because you drew your weapon. I have cleared dark areas of my property with a flash light and a hand gun because I thought something was not right. A person will only have a split second to decide to shoot or not to shoot, or just be a good witness. I will gladly tell you all about my back ground and training. I have never been a Cop and never wanted to be a Cop but I have had the opportunity to work with some really good ones on a daily basis.

There is nothing wrong with any responsible citizen wanting to be armed. Maybe I can help some of you in your shooting abilities if you would like. My future schedule will be busy to say the least but I still need time to knock off the rust. I hope I never have to shoot someone, but at the same time I won't be a victim either. We have rules at " Above the Cliff " Guest and Employee safety being my number 1 concern. Customer satisfaction and good times coming right behind that. I always have enjoyed a good time, over a fight. Fighting or being shot, hurts. I've had a few good local bar owners give me some great advice, I think I'll follow it . Now please sing up and vote for my Young gun,he's climbing fast,# 29 now .


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Juanita
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May 26, 2010 12:55 pm  

Well, good morning Surfer33. Hope you had a great night's sleep, and perhaps that chip fell off your shoulder during the night. Please re-read my post by the bright light of morning, and if you still think I am in favor of guns, much less actually shooting people, and particularly shooting them because of their race, then you might want to take that vivid imagination and do something with it more productive, like writing a hate novel.

I am actually very anti-gun, but alas, I guess my on line tone of voice failed me once again. If that gives me idiot status, you would have a field day with some of my real opinions!;)


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DixieChick
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May 26, 2010 1:16 pm  

i have a questions back to the 17 year old kid on house arrest. he somehow got a gun. but whose car? was it his, stolen or another driver? if someone is on house arrest why not impound his or her car? is that against the ACLU.

and who does monitor the ankle bracelets? do they still use them down here. what about inserting a GPS chip into someone who is on house arrest?

did you see the front page of the avis today? before i read the caption i thought it was St. Croix or St. Thomas. could be here sometime soon.


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chockman
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May 26, 2010 4:50 pm  

Maybe Jamaica should be your wake up call Mon. Second thought,maybe I should just keep my knowledge to my self. I have retired after all. Oh the times we live in ?


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