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Arizona Program Offers Free Shotguns For Protection

March 29, 2013 by  

Arizona Program Offers Free Shotguns For Protection

A new privately backed initiative in Tucson, Ariz., is taking the fight over residents’ powers of self-defense straight to the people, establishing a program whereby law-abiding citizens can get a free shotgun to help protect themselves and deter would-be assailants and thieves.

The work of a small coalition of residents fed up with the city’s underfunded police service, the program aims to reimburse residents in mid-to-high-crime areas of town who purchase a specific style of shotgun — once they’ve received firearms training (which the fund would also pay for).

The Tucson effort is part of a larger grass-roots crime prevention experiment that began in Houston, called the Armed Citizen Project (ACP). The ACP is a nonprofit organization “dedicated to facilitating the arming of law-abiding citizens, and analyzing the relationship between increased firearm availability and rates.”

The program has a larger goal as well: a statistics-based study of whether, and how, crime rates will change in the high-crime areas, one city block at a time, where residents have been armed with the ACP shotguns. ACP Executive Director Kyle Coplen, who conceived the project while a grad student at the University of Houston, explains the program’s logic this way:

Gun-control advocates often argue that an increase in guns in an area will lead to an increase in crime, while gun-rights advocates often believe that fewer guns result in more crime. While both sides often argue that their opponents’ policies will result in more crime, gun-control proponents have largely been the victors when it comes to policy implementation…It is our belief that gun-rights activists must take the offensive, and actively encourage the increased presence of defensive weapons in society. Both sides believe that their policies will result in less crime, and it is about time that our side begins to act with the conviction and courage that it will take to win the debate.

The single-break-action shotguns supplied to participants were chosen for their cost, facility of use, comparatively safe design and lack of appeal to criminals. But just because the group is using Vice President Joe Biden’s self-defense weapon of choice doesn’t mean they’ve spurned assault weapons. In fact, it’s to prove a point the gun grabbers often fall back on:

Another big reason for using this style of defensive weapon is to challenge the anti-gun lobby on a claim they often make. We are now quite used to hearing arguments along the lines of “why do you need an ‘assault weapon’ for home defense?” These gun-control proponents often insist that they do believe in the right to bear arms to some extent, and we are challenging them to prove it. If an “assault weapon” is too extreme to be used for home defense, then there must necessarily be a weapon that is acceptable for home defense, or else the gun-control proponent is being blatantly intellectually dishonest. This style of firearm [the shotgun] is likely to be the most palatable to any gun-control proponent that claims to believe in the right of self-defense, and we challenge them to reveal who they really are.

Back in Arizona, organizer Shaun McClusky, whom locals recognize as a former mayoral candidate, told the Arizona Daily Star he’s aware he’ll receive a fair amount of public scrutiny — both positive and negative — for launching the effort in a city that, for different reasons, has long attracted both liberal pro-regulation nuts as well as strong advocates of individual liberty. He’s unconcerned about any bad PR.

“Saying guns are responsible for killing people is like saying spoons are responsible for making people fat. If someone wants to bring me the publicity for free and sue me, bring it on,” he said.

“We need to take back our city, and it needs to come back to the citizens and not the criminals. Right now, the criminal element is winning.”

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • Chris

    I say “go for it” and try it out. Maybe if the scum of the earth knew they could be blown away for their dirty deed, they’d think twice about doing it and if not, well that’s one less prison body the taxpayers have to support.

    • Oneguess

      Sounds good to me, Chris.

  • huapakechi

    Are these to be semi-auto or pump shotguns? If the government is giving citizens guns, the government should require the people to show up at least annually and prove they still posess the gun, it still works, they are competent in its’ use.
    Other than that, I’m all for citizens having the choice to be armed or not.

    • Chester

      What about single-shot breach loading did you miss? The author was pretty clear that they were only issuing the cheapest, least likely to break down, weapons they could find. Might not do a lot of good if facing a crowd, but would definitely discourage one or two people staring at it.

      • Jimmy the Greek

        You can hold off ten people with a singel shot , On one wants to be the one to get shot ! However if i was one of the ten i would shove the dummy in frount of me and tell him as i shoved him ” Go take that gun ” after the fool got shot than it would be on LOL !

    • Jana

      huapakechi and Chester,
      I don’t think you even bothered to read this article. If you did you need to take reading comprehension classes.
      1. This is a privately backed initiative.
      2. The person buys their own gun then AFTER they have taken a gun course they are reimbursed for the gun and the course.

      This is citizens helping each other. We are still allowed to do that in this country thank goodness. Wow such a novel idea. All the Libs can come up with is forcefully take it from the rich and redistribute it into their own pockets.

    • Right Brain Thinker

      Jana may not have come up with the correct diagnosis in hoopyK’s case. I suspect that the reason he has so badly misread what the article said is that he has a learning disability of some sort. That would also explain some of the comprehension and communication difficulties he has had on other recent threads Help for those who are LD is available, hoopyK—-get some.

      Only in Jana Land would someone get effusive about “citizens helping each other” to buy guns, and say “Wow such a novel idea”. Actually, Jana, this looks like a “stunt” to make a political point—-perhaps we should wait to see how many “home defense guns” are actually reimbursed before we get too enthusiastic. (I predict the number will be at most in the single digits and wouldn’t be surprised if it was zero because of “implementation difficulties” or “government interference”).

      (And thanks for the mindless parroting of one of the favorite platitudes of the mindless right—–”All the Libs can come up with is forcefully take it from the rich and redistribute it into their own pockets”. Well done—-crackers are on the way).

      • Vicki

        Hey RBT. While you were busy with the ad hominem attacks did you notice that in 2012

        ~6 MILLION Americans living in Arizona DIDN’T shoot ANYONE? Why do you care if Jana noticed that helping some of those ~6 million innocents get the proper tools for self and home protection was a good idea?

        And don’t forget that

        ~300 MILLION Americans didn’t shoot ANYONE.

        Stop punishing the INNOCENT for the acts of a very few.

        STOP IT
        STOP IT NOW.

      • Right Brain Thinker

        Polly-Want-A-Crackers are on their way for you too, Vicki.

      • vicki

        Right Brain Thinker doesn’t and says:

        Boring? You find defending the rights of ~300 million Americans boring?

        Oh, I forgot they aren’t your rights so you don’t really care.

  • Chester

    Do hope they are supplying the proper ammunition for these guns. Really would want something in the range of #6 or #8 shot, small enough to get a decent dispersal, yet big enough to be sure whoever got hit with it would know they had been shot. Although, at moderate range, between ten and fifteen yards, B B shot would do a pretty good job, too.

    • Charlie R

      The firearm is free…. the ammo is YOUR responsibility.
      This is not a FEDERAL government program.

    • ranger09

      Chester, Number 3 0r 4 buckshot is the best for home protection, Will do the job. If you have the reason Do it right.

      • Jimmy the Greek

        I use 000 buck !

    • Emmett

      Their talking single shot, shotguns, against armed intruder. I’m using a slug, leaves a big hole and can knock a deer off his feet. Just think what it will do to that two legged animal. Don’t give him the chance to get up and hurt you or your family. If you’re forced to use it, shoot to kill.

  • Dave

    Yeah, that will end well…But at least they provide training before the reimburse to the first level of people that get the shotguns but then the GOP took a vote the other day not to increase penalties for people who engage in straw sales to people who fail background checks so I wonder how many of these shotguns will end up in the hands of criminals?

    Just another day in the life in crazy AZ.

  • ranger09

    Good,with training and the shotgun should help Now all they need to do is lower the barrel lenght to 12 in, Would work better for home protection.

  • http://midcontent ridge runner

    Shot guns require no training except for don’t suck on the barrel and hold said gun tight to the should. Hope the shot guns a pump not double barrels.

  • Nadzieja Batki

    Don’t take anything from anyone that is offered as something Free. Buy your own guns and ammo then they will be really free.

  • Dale Patterson

    Bravo . . . finally a common sense approach to fighting crime. When crooks know every house or apartment on a block or neighborhood has a gun, they stay away and look elsewhere for an easy target.

  • ann shannon

    that is the best thing i have heard of all law bidding citizens should havde one.nothing is going to stop the criminals from getting guns so why puish everyone I beliee everyone has forgotten who pays oama and the house they need to be reminded why is everyone so afraid of obama he has broken so many laws and is still in office i dont understand.we all need tostick togetherand take our country back. no one can tell me that the election was honest why would u want someeone in office that took so much money out for obama care and hurt the elderly by using our money for people who want a free ride while we worked and are still working.i dont want someones money who worked so hard to get to where they are.americans wake up.

  • richard brooks

    this group does support all of the current gun and gun ownership restrictions. which will leave most of the public defenseless. and without a free gun. a poor political ploy.

  • Jana

    Poor no brain is becoming childish.

    • vicki

      Becoming? You haven’t read many of his posts.

  • Right Brain Thinker

    Jana and vicki are ganging up on me! Maybe if they got steph and Alondra and some of the other “voodoo girls” together and had a “stick pins in RBT” party, I might feel it. (Although I don’t know, I’m old and achy a lot anyway so I might not notice)

    Yes, vicki——–terminally and unendingly “Booooooooooooooooorrrrrrriiiinngg!”
    I repeat, insufferably and egregiously “Booooooooooooooooorrrrrrriiiinngg!”

    And comical also, in that you are deluded enough to think that what you are doing is “defending the rights of ~300 million Americans” with your mindless chanting of slogans from the NRA “Handbook for Shills and Trolls”.

    And are you now taking away my rights, vicki?
    “Oh, I forgot they aren’t your rights so you don’t really care”.
    They most certainly are my rights and I do care—you really need to learn to spend enough time on your “snappy comebacks”—-it would be nice if they made sense.

    • Vicki

      Right Brain Thinker doesn’t and says:
      “They most certainly are my rights and I do care”

      Of course you care about YOUR rights. That is obvious from your posts. You just don’t care about anyone else’s rights. Which is also obvious by your posts.


    Ok Right Brain Stinker, just which rights are you referring to? All I ever hear from you is left wingnut crap that never makes any sense. It is a FACT that owning a weapon legally doesn’t mean that crime is going to go up, It is also a fact that most of the shootings by illegally owned guns happen mostly in “Gun Free Zones”, So quit yer yappin’ and get that so-called brain of yours in gear, do some real thinking instead of parroting the claptrap of the left who have no real idea except to disarm all citizens so they can take away all our Constitutional Guarentees.

  • Pingback: The Armed Citizen Project -an interesting concept | Grumpy Opinions


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