Tales of Two Gun Carriers

** We had to know, sooner or later, someone was going to test the Stand Your Ground law in Nevada. Unfortunately, it’s sooner. [Nevada Progressive] 73 year old Wayne Burgarello shot and killed two people who were in his vacant Sparks duplex.  Now Burgarello’s hearing has been delayed until June 12th in a Sparks JP Court. [RGJ]  Were the victims trespassing? It seems very likely.  Did Burgarello have other options than shooting the trespassers?  NRS 207.200 specifies what happens in the case the owner of the property gives an oral or written demand that the trespasser leave — the law kicks in — and further notes that the trespass is a misdemeanor.  Did Burgarello have options other than the use of deadly force?  We will hear his version of the story, however if Stand Your Ground equates to Silence the Witnesses then we won’t hear the voices of the two shooting victims.  Burgarello would have been totally within his rights to (a) issue a trespassing warning, and then (b) seek the assistance of the authorities to remove the trespassers.

Without knowing much more than that a neighbor told Burgarello that the victims were squatting in the vacant property, and that Burgarello showed up with three weapons, the impression is left that we may have yet another Angry Old Man shooting — a la Curtis Reeves.   Just as getting popcorn tossed at you in a movie theater doesn’t seem an appropriate time for lethal force, shooting a drug addled squatter when other remedies were at hand doesn’t quite square with ‘defense of property’ either.

** Now that General Eric Shinseki has been tossed to the media wolves for his inability to get the VA to clear up the wait-time morass, it’s high time to clean up the mess — for real — and that the Reno, NV VA facility has the 10th longest wait time isn’t good news. [RGJ]  Little wonder there’s been a waiting list:

“The 18,000 veterans who enrolled between October and March added to the 38,000 to 40,000 veterans the hospital already served, Farr said. The VA hospital in Reno serves Northern Nevada and as far south as Tonopah, Nev., plus nine California counties that border the Silver State.”  [RGJ

A person might have thought that the Congress would do something to alleviate the numbers problem — for example, authorizing the establishment of 27 new VA facilities — but after initial optimism last February the Senate Republicans threw up enough road blocks to stop the legislation from advancing.  Republicans wanted to attach a provision to enhance sanctions on Iran, and worried about “budget” considerations. [Reuters]  The result was that the filibuster continued on S. 1982 on a 56-41 vote. [Roll call 46]

Members of the Senate who voted to sustain the filibuster of S. 1982 were:

Alexander (R-TN) Ayotte (R-NH) Barrasso (R-WY) Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR) Burr (R-NC) Chambliss (R-GA) Coats (R-IN)
Coburn (R-OK) Cochran (R-MS) Collins (R-ME) Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX) Crapo (R-ID) Cruz (R-TX) Enzi (R-WY) Fischer (R-NE) Flake (R-AZ) Graham (R-SC) Grassley (R-IA) Hatch (R-UT)
Hoeven (R-ND) Inhofe (R-OK) Isakson (R-GA) Johanns (R-NE)
Johnson (R-WI) Kirk (R-IL) Lee (R-UT) McCain (R-AZ) McConnell (R-KY) Paul (R-KY) Portman (R-OH) Risch (R-ID) Roberts (R-KS) Rubio (R-FL) Scott (R-SC) Sessions (R-AL) Shelby (R-AL) Thune (R-SD) Toomey (R-PA) Vitter (R-LA)

See any D’s after those names?  Other than for the inclination of the broadcast media to interview All The Usual Suspects about their “reactions” to the VA debacle, this should be a list of people who have absolutely NO room to talk about the VA services or lack thereof.

Some people have no problem offering succor to those who take the law into their own hands and play Terminator, while dismissing the needs of veterans as “too expensive” when those legitimate gun carriers are asking for assistance; medical, educational, and in terms of employment.  It’s a strange world indeed.

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