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Net News: January 2000

By Jeff W. Zimba

The Denim Wall or the Berlin Wall?

It was brought to my attention recently that Levi-Strauss was running an anti-gun campaign on their website. A friend led me to the following URL:

http://www.levismusic.com/fuse99/pax_petition.html

Once there you will see the following text with a petition following it:

We are the future of America and we demand a future free from gun violence. We will no longer remain silent as a preventable epidemic devastates our towns, our homes and our schools.

We call on our nation’s leaders to develop a comprehensive plan to end the crisis of gun violence in our nation. This plan must include:

1. A national campaign to educate all Americans, both gun owners and non-gun owners, about the threat of gun violence and how it can be prevented.

2. Common sense gun violence legislation which is already supported by the majority of Americans, including the majority of gun owners, such as: Child access prevention laws to hold gun owners responsible for what happens with their guns and prevent children and others from having unauthorized access. Elimination of assault weapons and other weapons of war. Nationwide laws to eliminate illegal gun trafficking and keep guns out of the hands of criminals. Licensing and registration of guns, like automobiles. We demand solutions, not political debate, and we demand those solutions now.

As you can imagine, I was quite shocked. I wrote a letter to Levi-Strauss stating my disappointment in finding this. I told them I was writing a column for a National firearms magazine and wanted to give them the opportunity to respond before going to print. Their response to me was the following:

Dear Jeff:

Thank you for taking the time to write us. Customer feedback is very important to us and we appreciate your taking the time to express your opinions about this issue.

PAX is a non-profit, anti-violence organization which strives to reach youth all over the country by making a difference and attaining a society free of gun violence.

Levi Strauss & Co. supports PAX’s goal to bring all Americans together to support common sense solutions to the gun violence epidemic. PAX does not seek to ban firearms. It only seeks to end firearm violence through measures which the majority of Americans, including gun owners, can support.

Levi Strauss & Co. believes that all students should have an opportunity to learn in a safe environment free of violence and by supporting PAX and their petition, we hope to help put an end to gun violence in our schools.

Your views have been registered and we appreciate your taking the time to write and express your thoughts about this important issue.

Sincerely,
Donna
Levi Strauss & Co

I was disappointed again. The letter says that they are not in favor of banning firearms, but their website clearly states “...elimination of assault weapons and other weapons of war...” I guess it is getting clearer and clearer that the realm of political correctness knows no boundries. When I wrote to them to give them the opportunity to respond I stated that our readership represented an enormous amount of spendible income and it was my opinion that it would be spent somewhere other than Levi-Strauss. Damn, I really liked them too.

Handgun Control, Inc. Grades States

Although not brand new, cutting edge news I thought you may be interested in this. HCI, Inc put out a press release on August 27, 1999 grading all the states based upon their gun control laws. Each state is given a grade, and an explanation of why they received their grade. After the explanation, the number of “children and teenagers” who died in that particular state in 1996, as “a result of firearms” is listed. Now in all fairness, I have no idea of what their definition of “children and teenagers” is and I would assume it includes everyone under the age of 20, regardless of their background or the circumstances of their death. For instance, it would be my guess that 18 and 19 year old convicts involved in Police shootings are grouped into the category of “children and teenagers” as we have seen this in the past. For crying out loud, the Commander in Chief, who is certainly in bed with these people, can not even define the word “is” as seen in his testimony just prior to his impeachment. We may never get to the bottom of this one.
I included a quick chart giving the State, the grade and the number of “children and teenagers” deceased in 1996 for your reference. You can see the entire 10 page detailed press release at the following URL:

http://www.handguncontrol.org/press/release.asp?Record=71

I have had many who have seen this, recommend that it be used as a pro-gun mover’s guide, ensuring that the state you move to has a low grade, and is therefore on the higher end of the “Free State” scale. As a brief note, you will notice that Maine, who received an F ranking lost 5 “children and teenagers” in 1996. Maryland who received an A- ranking lost 109 during the same period. Good thing they have those strict gun laws, huh?

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