Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Senate passes measure to allow gun transport on Amtrak

That title tricked me, how about you. Read the article below and you will see that this is just a bill to get back a small amount of freedom. Read further and you will see that currently there are no security measures to prevent criminals from carrying weapons on to the train. When I fly, I am willing to go without my gun because I know that great measures have been taken to make sure that everyone is unarmed and there are armed police around.

I have a cost cutting measure for Amtrak. Make it legal to carry a firearm on the train. No need to add security, xray machines, or metal detectors. No need to add cops on the train. No fear of terrorists taking hostages because the armed citizens will take care of the issue for you. Still have to worry about suicide bombers but they are extremely tough to fight no matter what you do.

My opinion is that there is not reason to ever prevent law abiding citizens the right to carry weapon. Other than being impaired, I see no time I am not capable of being a responsible citizen.

"Well not all people are as responsible as you" or "some people are not properly trained" you libs might say.

Well, I go back to my old comments about mandating weapons training in high school and making it mandatory for all students.

My cop buddies are not going to like this comment but Police officers are normal citizens who took a job protecting others. They are no different than most other people and the majority of cops are no tougher or smarter then the average citizen.

I would like to hear from my cop friends and have them tell me what is the average gun training a street cop gets. What is the manditory range time and what is the average training a cop actually does extra?

My guess is that a lot of civilians train more than the average police officers does.

Remember America, this country was won by every day farmers turned soldiers. We all have a right and a responsibility to defend ourselves and others from the criminals who would prey on the weak.

Be a sheepdog and fight the wolves. Let the sheep go about their business. If we could only find a way to prevent the sheep from voting, lol.

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Amtrak would lose its federal subsidies if it doesn't put a system in place by early next year to check and track firearms so that passengers can legally put the weapons in their checked baggage, the Senate voted Wednesday.

One senator says the measure "is going to put a severe burden" on Amtrak.

The measure, an amendment to the transportation and housing appropriations bill, passed 68-30.

The House version of the bill, passed in July, does not include the provision, so further steps would be needed for it to reach President Obama's desk.

Amtrak's current policy prohibits passengers from carrying "any type of gun, firearm, ammunition, explosives or weapon" in carry-on or checked baggage.

Amtrak spokesman Steve Kulm said firearms had been allowed in checked baggage before the September 11 attacks.

However, despite the policy change, the company has no uniform system of screening for firearms, Amtrak Chairman Thomas Carper noted in a letter to Sens. Patty Murray and Christopher Bond decrying Wednesday's congressional mandate. They are the top Democrat and Republican, respectively, on the Appropriations Committee's transportation subcommittee.

"Unlike the airline industry, Amtrak has no system in place for a uniform system of screening for weapons," Carper wrote. The railroad has no secure loading areas, and trains make multiple stops, he said. Employees also would need intensive training.

Further, he said, the National Railroad Passenger Corp. (Amtrak) has neither the money nor the time to meet the Senate's timetable to put such a system in place.

Carper warned that if Amtrak were to lose federal funds, it would result in the "cessation of all Amtrak service nationwide."

According to its Web site, Amtrak has in place "a range of behind-the-scenes and front-line security measures" that include random passenger and carry-on baggage screening; checked baggage screening; K-9 units; onboard security checks; and identification checks.

"As part of our security strategy, randomly selected passengers and their baggage, handbags, backpacks or other personal items may be screened or inspected," it says.

"Passengers failing to consent to security procedures will be denied access to trains and refused carriage, and a refund will be offered."

The gun measure was sponsored by Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Mississippi.

He introduced the same legislation in August as part of the budget resolution, and it was approved with bipartisan support, but the provision was removed during final House-Senate negotiations.

"Under current practices, all of the American domestic airlines permit firearms in their checked luggage. Other American passenger railroads also allow checked firearms," Wicker said on the Senate floor Wednesday.

"Only the federally subsidized Amtrak prohibits law-abiding American citizens from exercising their Second Amendment rights in checked baggage," he said.

Murray opposed the legislation.

"In order to receive any federal funding under this amendment, Amtrak would have six months to build a process for checking and tracking firearms," she said.

"It would have to find the manpower necessary to screen and guard firearms, and it would have to purchase the equipment necessary. Now there is nothing in the underlying appropriations to pay for any of that. So this amendment is going to put a severe burden on them and if they do not comply, Amtrak will shut down."

The measure lays out the following guidelines:

• Before checking the bag or boarding the train, the passenger must declare that the firearm or pistol is in his or her bag and is unloaded.

• The firearm or pistol must be carried in a hard-sided container.

1 comment:

James said...

The average cop gets about 60 total hours of training in the academy. Most departments then have some type of post academy and there is additional training given there, but not much. The average patrol officer is then required to qualify at the range firing a total of 50 rounds. Most of those rounds are fired from 15 yards or closer at human size target. The test includes some manipulation drills such as empty gun and tactical reloads, but overall the test is a complete joke. I hate to say it, but the test is designed for complete idiots to pass.

After the cop gets to the street, he or she is required to go once a quarter and perform some type of established drill. The department mandates that the officer fire 50 rounds, and most only fire this amount. The officer must shoot the qualification once a year to stay certified.

The department says that any officer can go to the academy and use up to 100 rounds every month. Most do not do this at all, so in reality you can fire as much as you want. I would estimate less than 10 percent of the department actually take advantage of this.

Now after bashing my bretheren, remember that in addition to actuall live fire training, the department provides extensive scenario based shoot/no shoot situations. In this regard I believe the average police officer would be better trained than the average citizen. However, everyone knows that I am a HUGE supporter of civilian carry, and totally agree with Warthog on being a sheepdog and fighting the wolves for yourself.