I read a depressing story on the Fox News web site today. Nothing new I
suppose, but this one made me think. You see, four firefighters are dead, their
Tom L. Craven, 30
Karen L. Fitzpatrick, 18
Devin A Weaver, 21
Jessica L. Johnson, 19
They are dead, most likely, because helicopters were not able to obtain water
to drop on their location quick enough. Why, you might ask, was there not enough
water to save the lives of these four heroes? Because the closest water source,
the Chewuch River in Washington State, is home to protected species of salmon
That's right, the Endangered Species Act. Fire helicopters must receive
permission to dip water out of protected areas. Apparently there is a fear that
endangered fish might be scooped up with the water and destroyed.
OK, what does this have to do with law enforcement officers? The problem lies
in the location from which the Endangered Species Act was derived - the UN.
The ESA states it is enacted, "pursuant to: the Convention on International
Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora," That, in short, is the UN.
Recently the UN held the "United Nations Conference on the Illicit Trade in
Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects". In the Draft Program of Action
from the conference it states:
"To ensure, subject to the respective constitutional and legal systems of
States, that the armed forces, police or any other body authorized to hold small
arms and light weapons, establish adequate and detailed standards and procedures
relating to the management and security of their stocks of these weapons. These
standards and procedures should, inter alia, relate to: appropriate locations
for stockpiles; physical security measures; control of access to stocks;
inventory management and accounting control; staff training; security,
accounting and control of small arms and light weapons held or transported by
operational units or authorized personnel; and procedures and sanctions in the
event of thefts or loss." Section 2, para.18.
What concerns me most is, "...physical security measures; control of access
to stocks;... security, accounting and control of small arms and light weapons
held or transported by operational units or authorized personnel;".
It wasn't so long ago the Clinton administration was pushing hard for
gun" technology to ensure only authorized users could fire a weapon. Remember
the Smith & Wesson deal? I'm sure most of you are familiar with what went on.
For the time being the issue seems to be on the back burner - but how long will
it be before it rears it's ugly head again?
If this most recent "Program of Action" is placed into effect (The US was
party to it's creation), what better way to would there be to ensure, "control
of small arms and light weapons held or transported by operational units (police
officers) or authorized personnel;"? I don't care what any manufacturer says,
"smart gun" technology, isn't. Whether it is a wrist band, ring, bio-device, etc., the more "bells and whistles" you put on a piece of equipment the more
likely it is to malfunction - and at the most inopportune time. Murphy is a
mother - and she's not to be tempted.
Just imagine you and a partner standing in the middle of a domestic when it
all "goes south". Your partner is shot, laying on the floor unconscious, your
gun jams, you reach for your partner's and - sorry, you're not an authorized
user or your wristband is inoperable. Goodnight, good-bye, chalk two more heroes
up to "smart" guns.
Today we read about four firefighters killed because of bureaucracy - how
long will it be before we read about four police officers...
Credit to Fox News for airing the firefighter story and to William
LaJeunnesse and Robin Wallace for contributing to it.
Grimes is a career police officer in Craig, CO.
firstname.lastname@example.org (The views and opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily
representative of the Craig Police Department. I am solely responsible for
the content. They are not endorsed by CPD or the City of Craig.)
the Second Amendment Police Department