November 21, 2010 |
HARRISBURG - Should Pennsylvanians have the right to use deadly force in virtually any place they feel threatened? Does your "castle" extend past the walls of your home? Now those questions are on Gov. Rendell's desk. In the next seven days he must decide whether to sign into law a controversial measure expanding people's rights to defend themselves with deadly force - also known as the castle doctrine. In essence, the governor must wade into a debate between supporters who call it a "stand your ground" bill and opponents who label it a "shoot first" measure.
November 18, 2010
Harrisburg lawmakers have sent a bad bill to Gov. Rendell. The legislation would make the streets of cities and other communities across the state more dangerous by allowing gun owners to blast away if they feel threatened outside their home or even in their car. Rendell should veto the measure. The legislation would expand the "castle doctrine," which enables gun owners to use their weapons in defense within their loosely defined home, or "castle. " Under current law, a homeowner has all the legal protection he or she needs to defend against an intruder inside a home.
November 17, 2010
OF COURSE Gov. Rendell will veto the Legislature's efforts to expand gunplay in the city and state by expanding the Castle Doctrine to allow more use of deadly force. As a former district attorney and mayor in a city with sections where the sound of gunfire is as common as the sound of traffic, for Rendell to do otherwise would be nuts. As a governor who sought measures to reduce gun violence, such as requiring the reporting of lost or stolen guns or limiting gun sales to one a month, doing otherwise would be counterintuitive.
October 15, 2010 |
HARRISBURG - In a burst of last-minute activity, the Pennsylvania Senate wrapped up its final scheduled work day of the 2009-10 legislative session by approving dozens of bills on an array of topics, from the controversy-plagued Delaware River Port Authority to pension funds, gun owners' rights, and overcrowded prisons. The chamber took no action, however, on the 800-pound gorilla in the room: the proposed imposition of a tax on natural gas extracted from the Marcellus Shale. Senate leaders say that if an agreement is reached with the House and Gov. Rendell on a natural-gas tax in coming days, they may yet schedule days next week to vote on the proposal.
October 14, 2010 |
HARRISBURG - The state Senate gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a measure that would expand gun owners' rights and voted down an amendment that would have repealed a law that allows individuals who cannot get a gun permit in Pennsylvania to do so other states. In a 41-8 vote, the Senate amended a bill to add the so-called castle doctrine, which allows individuals to defend themselves beyond their homes, including in their vehicles and, in essence, "anywhere they have the right to be," according to the legislation.
October 6, 2010 |
HARRISBURG - The state House passed a measure expanding gun-owners' rights while scuttling for the second time in as many days an effort by gun-control advocates to close the so-called Florida loophole. In a bipartisan 159-38 vote, the House approved expansion of the so-called castle doctrine, which allows individuals to defend themselves beyond their home - or castle - or vehicle. At the same time, House Republicans, backed by dozens of Democratic supporters, shut down attempts to consider any amendments proposed by gun-control advocates.
November 19, 2009
"GUN NUTS" and "gun-hating zealots" will be taking aim at each other before the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee today in Harrisburg (check your weapons at the door, please.) It's a public hearing for House Bill 40, which will "eliminate the duty to retreat" if you are confronted by an attacker, according to Dave McGlaughlin, deputy counsel to the committee, and a former Philadelphia defense attorney. As another chapter in our society's clash of cultures, HB40 will drive most Philadelphians batty and be catnip to Pennsylvanians up north and out west.