Happy New Year from the ST blog!

Here’s wishing you and yours a very safe, healthy, and happy New Year’s eve and day. Let’s make 2013 count!

Of course, it’s already “next year” in other parts of the world. Enjoy the fireworks seen earlier in Australia. :)

Helpful tips: First and foremost, you should designate a driver if you know you’re going to drink the night away. But in the event you don’t have a DD or neglect to designate one, keep this information in mind: Although it isn’t being offered nationally, some AAA clubs are offering Tow-to-Go or Tipsy Tow service tonight for those who shouldn’t be driving. If you’re interested in learning more info for yourself or a loved one, click here. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has a list of sober/safe ride options as well. Please make sure to keep this information handy as it could save a life.

Be well!

Demand a Plan! (To end celebrity hypocrisy)

**Posted by Phineas

Actually, I don’t know if they’re hypocritical so much as clueless, but the result is the same: yet another deep, meaningful campaign in which a bunch of vapid airheads go in front of a camera and repeat slogans over and over, hoping to brainwash you into submission, like a bunch of zombies.

This time, however, someone took that video and remixed it with interesting results:

So, celebs, does your plan include your own movies? Shouldn’t we be talking about the 1st amendment, as well as the second? Don’t your films promote the dread “gun culture” and glorify violence? If we’re going to restrict Americans’ rights to self-defense in the name of public safety, shouldn’t your films be subject to censorship for the same reason?

Or maybe, just maybe, the problem lies with the person, not the tool or the medium.

But that’s probably too difficult for for a bunch of zombies to understand.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

Don’t bother Senator Feinstein with facts; she wants her gun ban, and she wants it now!

**Posted by Phineas

Never let reality get in the way of a good fantasy, eh? (1) In the wake of a series of mass-murders this year, Diane Feinstein (D-CA) wants to ban the traffic and manufacture of vaguely defined military-style weapons. And yet the facts from her own state seem to show that increased gun ownership is one factor in a decline in crime:

Gun sales up, injuries down

The FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System, which records each time someone buys a gun, showed that background checks hit a record high of 16.5 million in 2011. Gun sales have been steadily on the rise.

A recent report (PDF) from the California Attorney General found that the more guns that have been sold in California, the fewer gun deaths and injuries there have been. According to the office of the Attorney General, gun dealers sold nearly 600,000 guns last year, almost double the 350,000 sold in 2002, according to figures compiled by department officials.

And gun-related injuries and deaths have gone down.

According to hospital records collected by the California Department of Public Health, the number of California hospitalizations due to gun injuries fell by nearly 4,000 a year to approximately 2,900, drop of about 25 percent, the Sacramento Bee reported.

The attorney general’s office reported that the number of deaths from firearms fell from 3,200 a year to about 2,800, an 11 percent decline (PDF), according to California health department figures.

“Most of the drop in firearm-related injuries and deaths can be explained by a well-documented, nationwide drop in violent crime,” the Bee reported.

Despite this data, Feinstein still plans to introduce stricter gun ownership legislation.

While correlation doesn’t prove causation, this is yet another piece in a mountain of data indicating that gun ownership (including concealed and open-carry) leads to lower crime. The logic is straightforward: criminals are less likely to attack a target they think can defend itself. But Feinstein doesn’t care or even want to hear. (2) Don’t bother her with facts: she knows as an article of faith guns are bad and is determined to ban them, even if it leads to leaving good people defenseless.

For our own good, of course.

PS: If you’re interested in following a good Center-Right reporter and news site in California (we do have a few left), Katy Grimes in particular and Cal Watchdog in general should be on your list.

Footnotes:
(1) Kind of like progressives and economics, when you think about it.
(2) Kind of like the global-warming crowd and carbon dioxide, too.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)