Monday, December 31, 2007

It Really Is A Happy New Year....

When you have the option to conceal your weapon and be prepared in the event your life is in danger.

I'm proud to say that, after a process that technically started on August 19th, I received my Delaware Carry Concealed Deadly Weapon permit today, December 31st.

Four and one-half months it took to complete this process, two and two-thirds of that waiting on the state to process my application and do all of the background checks and make sure everything was copasetic.

As I've mentioned before, now that I have my in-state permit, I'll have my Pennsylvania non-resident permit within a couple of weeks instead of a quarter of a year... and for a fraction of the price.

In case you've never seen one, this is basically what they look like -- I've removed and altered several things so as to protect it from being reproduced.

This is the front... if I seem to bear a striking resemblance to Russell Crowe, that's because I also felt it necessary to photoshop his somewhat homelier face over my devilishly handsome visage as to cut down on the number of Internet stalkers. *coughcough*

I do want to point out that this is a license to carry a concealed deadly weapon and not necessarily a concealed handgun permit. So, technically, this would apply to blades, chains, knuckles and so forth. I, personally, don't get that, but then again, I've never been in a fist fight in my life and wouldn't know how to hold my own -- a reason for obtaining this permit, so I have the best method possible to protect my children and family.

If you're a Delaware resident and have wondered about obtaining your permit, please, feel free to ask me any questions. If you've ever been concerned about your safety, I ask that you consider taking a training course and, perhaps, even purchasing a pistol... women in particular.

I can't validate this statistic; however, as a woman, you have a 50% chance of being assaulted in your lifetime. A 130 pound woman against a 225 pound assailant is simply not a fair fight.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Delaware CCDW Process Podcast

So, on of the Christmas gifts I bought for myself was an iPod Touch which is, technically, an iPhone without the phone, nor the camera -- a glorified PDA with built-in wifi. Now, having bought it more for being a techno-geek myself, I don't actually own a whole lot of music. The music I do own is generally Irish and celtic rock in theme.

So, I loaded up iTunes and went over to the podcasts section to see what was available -- I had 8 gigs to load and not many CD's to burn... I began to subscribe to a lot of things that interest me. I got the DCI Field Pass and, with my current interest in law, the Litigation Podcast. Of course, I had to get the podcasts regarding Second Amendment activism and found one called the Gun Rights Activist Podcast done by the guys over at Gun Rights.

In listening to the latest podcast, the host, Mark Vanderberg, solicited podcasts from listeners to explain the process for getting a concealed handgun permit in their state. Having done sound production in the past, I had all of the software and a nice condenser microphone already setup on my PC, so I opened up a new file and began to record.

The result was a 17-minute monologue discussing some of Delaware's laws, the process by which you make application for a Carry Concealed Deadly Weapon permit here, as well as my experiences with the process.

You can get the podcast HERE.

My segment starts about twenty minutes in, after which an interview with John Pierce over at OpenCarry.Org -- forums I frequent -- can be heard.


Merry Christmas to All

Happy Hanuka.
Happy Kwanza.
Happy Festivus.

Here's hoping your holidays have been safe and enjoyable!

So, I know that Santa was good to me and I received almost everything I'd ask for -- some of these books included:
  • Making Sense of Search & Seizure Law
  • Origin of the Second Amendment
  • Black's Law Dictionary
  • Pirates and Patriots, Tales of the Delaware Coast
My family truly thinks I'm looking to make a career leap from web developer to lawyer; however, I'm already too much in debt to attempt to earn a degree from a proper law school -- in the meantime, I'll continue to work on a degree in Criminal Justice for fun.

The last book, Pirates and Patriots, Tales of the Delaware Coast... Written by a Southern Delaware columnist who authors a regular column called 'Delaware Diaries' I was drawn to this book as it mentions my great ancestor -- the first of my line to come to the new world in the early 1600's who is recognized as 'The first settler of Sussex County'...

I also got that boat motor (hand blender) that I've been wanting for some time, though my thought it odd that I wanted the kitchen appliance and my wife the belt sander for her hobbies; it's usually the other way around.

So, my two girls are on a short break before the new year, so I'll be hard at work watching them... it's good to have some down time to spend with my daughters. I honestly hope you all have the same opportunity.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Blackhawk Thoughts...

So, in preparation for carrying concealed, since I already own Blackhawk's CQC Serpa holster which, I must admit I truly enjoy because of the Level II retention, I decided to pick up a shoulder rig for the holster.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the holster, it's an injection molded holster and the assembly where the belt attaches to the holster is removable so you can have your standard belt attachment, replace it with the 'paddle' so it rides much closer to your body or, for guys like me who have a little bit of what you might call 'love handles' pick up some spacer brackets so it rides out from your waist a little more -- also nice for competition.

So, the holster rig is nylon and velcro and you're able to remove the belt attachment from the holster and attach it to the rig.

This was my first time wearing anything other than a belt holster so, continuing with Blackhawk's stellar reputation for little to no documentation, it took me a few minutes to figure out what was what.

Under my right arm (right side of the picture -- these were taken in a mirror) you can see two rails there where you can place one of Blackhawk's dual magazine holster. So, my first thoughts are with, being chubby and all, that the only way I can really effectively draw my weapon is to bring my weak arm above my heart (so as not to sweep my arm during the draw) and really reach over to release it from the holster.

You may not be able to tell from this image, but my upper body is twisting slightly, which may be normal but, once again, I've never worn this kind of harness before.

One complaint I've heard before is that the harness does flop around quite a bit and, while I tend to agree to some extent, I've found that if you push the straps that hook onto your belt on either side a bit more forward, it'll create a decent amount of tension to keep it fairly secure against your body.

Outside of that, all straps are adjustable and the medium size fits up to 56" I believe the Blackhawk representative told me -- thankfully, I won't need all of that, but I'm looking forward to being prepared... As I walk through the Christiana mall and see some of the people there (especially during Christmas time) and think back to the three (four?) jewelry store robberies in plain daylight, I truly am glad that I'll be prepared to protect my family should the need arise.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

(Almost) In Like Flynn...

I dropped the Prothonotary a call today -- since they sent my previous communication out almost a week after it had been dated and you only get ten days to file an appeal for a denial, I wanted to stay on top of things...

After being transfered to the appropriate person, she notified me that my paperwork had recently come back and I'd be receiving my permit sometime next week. Needless to say, I'm rather relieved that, after five months and spending over $400, this process wasn't in vain.

The good news? Once I receive my permit in the mail, I make a photocopy of that and my license, send off a $25 fee or so and, within a week, I'll have my Pennsylvania non-resident permit. Quite a difference in processes, I must say.

With those two permits, I'll be able to legally conceal in 27 states... Thankfully, I don't travel too often into Maryland or New Jersey, where it's almost impossible for a resident, much less a non-resident, to obtain a permit unless you're close friends with a government official in very high places.

I'll be happy to give my business to the Delvania area stores.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Response to the Judiciary

So, I stayed up a bit last night and drafted my response to the Judge who is reviewing my application. After getting some wording advice from a few friends and running it through the spell checking, I printed out two copies and ran over to the Office of the Prothonotary at the New Castle County Court House on King Street, since I only work about two blocks a way.

As a point of interest, they made me check my mini-flashlight at the front desk -- after the officer inspected it and made sure it really did illuminate what it was pointed at, he gave me a claim check and told me to pick it up on my way out. I guess he didn't want anyone getting around in the event of a blackout... Okay, that was snarky, but hey, it's an observation!

Here's my response to the Judge:

Dear Judge XXXX,

Thank you for taking my application into consideration. In your letter dated November 30, 2007, you stated that my reason for the application, "...for the protection of self, family & property." was insufficient and requested further written explanation for the need of a permit before the application would be acted on. I would like to correct one error in your letter -- the reason stated on my application actually read, “Lawful defense of myself and my family." In all honesty, I don't value my property over the life of another human being and it is not a reason for my application.

That being said, my family: XXXX who is thirty-six, my oldest daughter, XXXXX, who is four and my youngest daughter, XXXX, who is one, are my primary reasons for making application for this permit. As active northern Delawareans, we work and are schooled in urban areas and spend a good deal of our recreational time outdoors. Though we've had very few encounters that have made me fear for my life or the lives of my family, each time we're out I pray for an uneventful day. I have no real story of being a victim that precipitated my application for this permit and, if granted, I pray that I will never find need for its use; however, in the event I'm put into a position to protect the lives of my wife and children where mortal danger is certain, I want to be prepared to adequately perform that duty.

In my initial research, I came across a quote from former Attorney General Oberly who stated in January of 2006 in an article written on, "Under current Delaware law, virtually anyone, excepting felons, may strap on a holster and carry a gun in plain view. You can even carry a rifle over your shoulder and walk around with it." While I understand that, lawfully, I’m able to "open carry" without a permit, I do feel that, in some situations, this might warrant unnecessary attention from both the public and law enforcement officers where as being permitted to conceal my firearm would allow me to be more discrete and not divert police resources who would undoubtedly be called upon to investigate a “man with a gun.”

In conclusion, I kindly request that Your Honor see fit to grant me this permit. My wish is to be prepared in the event that my family or I is in imminent mortal danger. I'm sure you'll find that the research done by the State Police and Attorney General's office shows a pristine record and that I am a respected member of the community with no ill-intent.

If you have any further concerns or questions regarding my application, please feel free to contact me at your leisure and I will happily provide you with any information you may require.


My Signature

The waiting game continues.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Permit Update

I'll be taking a reply into the courthouse tomorrow.

My Ideal Government

Sure, it has some flaws, but in keeping with my line of thought in not legislating morality, I've decided that there had to be a better way to write the laws that govern the people. Morals are a byproduct of religion -- not necessarily a bad thing, but they have absolutely no place in modern government. In a country where so many politicians preach the rights of the people, you'd think this to be a fairly simple deduction. Not so apparently.

The Rights of the People
When you start writing laws based on decency and morality, whose morals are being used for that benchmark? I'll concede that there needs to be some tests for decency when it comes to issues involving minors and media exposed to minors; however, a lot of other things you can think of can be legislated by the rights of the people.

As it currently stands, property rights trump all others -- you're on my property? You're subject to my restrictions. The right to freely speak and express ones' ideas -- my manner of dress is how I express myself, leave me alone. Fairly straight-forward so far, yes?

About that morality thing... How would you take into account crimes of violence? That's certainly immoral, yes?

Perhaps, but even by todays standards, capital punishment and all, the government doesn't really seem to care much about that, now do they?

Murder. You're taking away someone's right to live. Theft. You're taking away someones right to own property. Assault. You're ultimately forcing that person to bear the financial burden of medical bills and preventing them from prospering while they heal.

I'm simply trying to stress the point that, in any legislation, you have to first ask yourself, "Is this even coming close to infringing on the rights of the people?" If the answer is, "Yes," toss your draft into the wastebasket and start again.

If, someday, we ever go back to living by the Constitution and truly basing our lives from the ideas and freedoms our founding fathers intended us to have, with justice being blind, the world would be a much better place.

When Every Second Counts...

When every second counts...

"The two shootings, the first at a Christian missionary center in Arvada and the second at a Colorado Springs megachurch, left a gunman and four victims dead and six wounded, authorities said."

"A black-clad gunman who attacked worshippers at New Life Church in Colorado Springs, initially killing one and wounding four, was killed by "a courageous security staff member," Colorado Springs Police Chief Richard Myers said."

"The suspect was confronted by a security guard," Myers said at a news conference late Sunday. "She shot the suspect, and the suspect subsequently died at the scene."


Once the police were called, it took them three minutes to respond. In that time, ten people fell prey to his attack...

When every second counts, the police are minutes away.

The security guard is being hailed as a hero who, undoubtedly, prevented the injury and deaths of 'countless' others. One person makes a difference... Regardless of your politics, religious views or your feelings about guns, please have some way to protect yourself and your family.

Friday, December 7, 2007

And In Local News... Underwear.

I heard the lady who blogs Delaware Curmudgeon on WDEL this afternoon on my way to pick up my daughter after school and the topic was about a Wilmington City Councilperson who's attempting to introduce 'decency legislation' in an attempt to get kids to pull up their pants. She wound up writing an open letter to the council members which pretty much mirrored my thoughts on the issue...

In all honesty, what's the difference between the above? The one on the left is a pair of womens underwear and the one on the right is a bikini bottom bathing suit? With this legislation, will swimming pools be a thing of the past?

Here's my primary beef: Don't legislate morality. One man's, "Oh, my god!" can always be another man's, "No big deal." Attempting to legislate morality (keeping in mind, who's morals are we using as a base) has gotten society into trouble with regards to discrimination and turning people into classes. Justice should be based on the rights of the people and it should be completely blind to race, creed, religion, sexual preference, weight and wardrobe choice.

Speaking of wardrobe choice, that's all this is. And what does that mean? It means it's how someone is choosing to express themselves which is a freedom that is guaranteed to us by the First Amendment of the Constitution.

Don't get me wrong, I work at a local college and a day doesn't go by where I don't want to cuff one by the neck and tell them to pull up their damned pants. If folks ever want to make something of themselves in a respected position that's going to allow them to support a family, they'll need to adjust to what people accept as 'normal'. Until the time comes when THEY make the choice to adjust, if they ever choose to, don't FORCE them to in the mean time.

The radio host, Allan Loudell, had made a comment that the manner in which these folks were dressing had some correlation to criminal activity -- I really would love to know where he found that statistic; however, to it I have two comments:

1) Does the Councilman really think that by changing the way people dress it's going to somehow curtail crime in Wilmington? Get serious.

2) This is a GOOD thing -- during the course of a police investigation, nothing helps speed things along more than someone wearing a sign that says, "I'M THE CRIMINAL", which, according to this correlation, is exactly what it's doing. So, why kill the home field advantage as it were?