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THURSDAY, APRIL 8, 2021

- ARCHERY -
The new Barnett® Hyper Whitetail™ 410 provides innovative features, design and value for the serious whitetail hunter. 
- COMPETITION -
Benelli pro shooter Dakota Overland won High Junior and High Lady in Tactical 3-Gun Division at this year’s Superstition Mountain Mystery 3-Gun match. Fellow Benelli pro shooter Aaron Hayes also took first place in the Limited Division.
- CONSERVATION -
Several large wildlife conservation and habitat projects have been funded after more than $3.1 million was committed to projects during the annual conservation permit project funding meeting held on April 1.
- EDUCATION -
After cancellation of three separate ANR programs last summer, the Academy of Natural Resources returns in July and August at the DNR’s RAM Center (on Higgins Lake in Roscommon) and the Ford Center in the western U.P.

- EVENTS -
Primary Arms Government has announced its attendance at the Texas Tactical Police Officers Association 2021 Conference, from April 7th to April 11th in Dallas. Primary Arms will be showcasing their new professional service programs and a free raffle on the new SLx 1-5x24mm FFP Rifle Scope with ACSS Raptor 5.56 Reticle.

Shoot Like A Girl is taking the Home of the Brave Tour to Cabela's in Waco, Texas this weekend (April 10 and 11).
Flooding at Smith Lake Park in Cullman, Alabama, has prompted B.A.S.S. to move the Carhartt Bassmaster College Series at Lewis Smith Lake presented by Bass Pro Shops to May 14-15, 2021.
- FISHING -
Designed by Northland chief bait designer Jarmo Rapala, Northland Fishing Tackle’s new Rumble Stick is a deep-diving crankbait available in two sizes with varying diving depths.
- INDUSTRY -
Barrett Firearms Manufacturing Inc. announced that it has been awarded a five-year $49.9 million contract under the United States Army Precision Sniper Rifle program with its Multi-Role Adaptive Design MK22 MOD 0 rifle, paired with a Leupold & Stevens Mark 5 HD scope and sniper-accessory kit.

MonsterMeal is proud to announce it has continued its partnership with STUBZmedia of Ridgeway, Iowa.
Celerant Technology announces a new partnership with AmChar Wholesale. The integration seamlessly connects Celerant’s ATF-compliant point of sale, in store kiosks and eCommerce platform with AmChar, enabling dealers to import product catalogs, streamline inventory replenishment, and offer more products in store and online with less effort.
Guns.com is very excited to announce that in partnership with FastBound, we have launched a free integration that allows FastBound dealers to accelerate their listing and selling processes through Guns.com.
Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have partnered withGranular farm management software to help farmers harness precision agriculture technology to increase positive conservation measures and financial outcomes for their operations.

- JOBS -
The ideal candidate for this position has previous experience in eCommerce product merchandising, marketing, online retail, customer service, and data management.
- LEGISLATION -
The Texas House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee held a hearing Tuesday for HB 956 that would remove from statute a number of places where Location-Restricted Knives (having blades over 5 1/2 inches) are banned. The bill was passed out of committee on a bipartisan vote.
- NEW PRODUCTS -
The new Spring Lock Spinner from Gamakatsu makes your favorite swimbaits and other soft plastics even more effective by adding flash and vibration to attract fish from even greater distances.
Cold Steel introduces the new Gunsite Counter Point 1 folding knife. Featuring the Gunsite Raven logo across the blade, the Gunsite Counter Point 1 is the perfect addition to any range bag or for everyday carry needs.

Galco's Dog Collar is made of the finest quality 10–11-ounce coffee-colored bridle leather, with polished edges for a finished and upscale look and feel.
The newly updated NWTF collection for 2021 combines the best in modern technologies and high-performance materials to create the ultimate, purpose-driven hunting clothing for the most passionate of turkey hunters.
- OPTICS -
Meopta Sport Optics is now shipping its MeoPro Air binoculars. Available in 8x42 HD and 10x42 HD, the Air features an advanced optical system, ergonomic open-hinge design, and new body style built to withstand the harshest environments.
A smaller, lighter version of SWAROVSKI's NL Pure 42, the NL PURE 32 binocular features the same superb optical system as its big brother, with an extremely compact, precise focus mechanism.

- ORGANIZATIONS -
Ducks Unlimited (DU) recently announced that Doug Barnes has been named the organization’s first Chief Brand Officer (CBO).
Hunting and land management application HuntStand announces a partnership with the National Wild Turkey Federation.
- PARTNERSHIPS -
In their multi-year partnership, Pyramyd Air becomes a national partner of SCI, as well as the official airgun retailer to SCI and its approximately 50,000 members.

- PUBLISHING -
The Armory Life is pleased to announce a new quarterly print publication to complement its daily digital content. Currently, recipients of The Armory Life print magazine are selected from Springfield Armory warranty registrants.

The Spring 2021 issue of Quality Whitetails magazine is on the way to National Deer Association (NDA) members, featuring a cover photo by Donald M. Jones.
- RADIO -
Houston Safari Club Foundation (HSCF) and “Hunting Matters” welcomes Andy Techmanski, CEO and Founder of FORLOH.
This week on America Outdoors Radio Andrew Wheeler with Abu Garcia shares the top ten fisheries in America.
- RETAIL -
Nilodor, manufacturer of the most exceptional quality odor control and pet care products in both the commercial and family pet markets is proud to introduce the all new Kennel Wash from their Tough Stuff line.

- STATE PARKS -
Gov. Pete Ricketts has proclaimed 2021 the year of Nebraska’s State Parks Centennial. It is a year that will see activity in the parks like no other, with events scheduled throughout 2021 across the state.
Spring Mill State Park has a new playground at the Donaldson Cave parking lot near Donaldson Shelter thanks to a grant from the Smithville Foundation and donations from local businesses.
- STATES -
This spring, Ohio offers multiple opportunities for wild turkey hunters to enjoy a close encounter with this popular game bird.
- STUDENT FISHING -
Twelve of the top high school anglers in the country have been selected as new members of the notable Bassmaster High School All-American Fishing Team presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors.
- WILDLIFE -
The Florida FWC’s new Gopher Tortoise Friendly Yard Recognition Program honors Florida’s private landowners for contributing to wildlife conservation.
- WORKSHOPS -
Learn how to connect students to Nebraska’s aquatic resources using educational, science-based activities by participating in the Aquatic WILD educator workshop April 20 at Schramm Education Center.
 

Later today, President Joe Biden will officially announce what the White House released last evening: six “initial actions” to “Address the Gun Violence Public Health Epidemic”. Before you get angry at the “actions” you should be very concerned that the administration is now falling in line with the anti-gun groups assertion that gun violence is a public health issue.

Here are the six proposals:

The Justice Department, within 30 days, will issue a proposed rule to help stop the proliferation of “ghost guns”.

The Justice Department, within 60 days, will issue a proposed rule to make clear when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace effectively turns a pistol into a short-barreled rifle subject to the requirements of the National Firearms Act.

The Justice Department, within 60 days, will publish model “red flag” legislation for states.

The Administration is investing in evidence-based community violence interventions.

The Justice Department will issue an annual report on firearms trafficking.

The President will nominate David Chipman to serve as Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

Whew. This isn’t a first shot at gun owners, it’s a salvo. As his been his habit throughout a long political career, Mr. Biden has never passed up an opportunity to support against gun owners.

The apparent plan calls for Attorney General Merrick Garland to join the President to announce these actions. He’d promised anti-gun groups “quick action” following shootings in Atlanta, Georgia, Boulder, Colorado, and Orange County, California.

There were already whispers going around to assure action against what the administration calls ghost guns - 80% complete lowers that require final machining by owners before they can be assembled into working firearms - will be the first target.

Mr. Biden can not simply outlaw them via executive order, but he can compel the Justice Department to change their rules categorizing them from parts to guns. That would require purchasers to undergo a background check when purchasing them. The background check would require the purchases go through a licensed federal firearms licensee.

Last evening, pro Second Amendment groups like the Second Amendment Foundation were preparing for what they knew would

“President Biden will try to get away with as much as he can with executive orders,” says the Second Amendment Foundation’s Alan Gottlieb,“the devil will be in the details.”

“Our legal team will review them and we are prepared to file suit if Biden steps over his legal authority.”

Exactly what constitutes “his legal authority” is, as Gottlieb points out, will likely become a matter for the courts and Congress to ultimately decide.

Executive orders are not blanket decrees and lack the force of law. They’re orders for the executive branch of government.

Both Congress (the legislative branch) and the courts (the judicial branch) have the power to strike down executive orders that exceed the scope of the president/executive branch’s authority.

Article II of the Constitution assigns the presidential role to “commander in chief, head of state, chief law enforcement officer, and head of the executive branch.”

To fulfill those duties, the president’s sole constitutional obligation is to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”

Under those guidelines, the president’s directives to the Justice Department appear to fall under those authorities.

“NSSF will carefully review the executive orders the President plans on signing tomorrow,” the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Lawrence Keane told me, “Where those orders exceed his lawful authority and usurp the power of Congress to make law NSSF will take all ‘appropriate steps’ to protect the interests of our industry and the Second Amendment rights of our customers.”

Those customers, Keane points out, include “over 8.4 million Americans who exercised their constitutional right to own firearms for the first time -many of whom are women, African and Asian Americans.”

That seems to be a fact largely being ignored by the other side of the issue. More than any time in modern history, minorities are exercising their right to own guns.

That could prove problematic for an administration that has made the restriction of that right a promise to the anti-gun groups who supported them. Keeping that promise will mean deliberately ignoring the fact that many minorities have bought guns because they’ve lost faith in the government’s ability to maintain order.

“Instead of pandering to Mayor Bloomberg and the antigun zealots,” Keane said, “the administration would be better served by seeking common ground on real solutions that make all our communities safer, like the NSSF’s safety initiatives, such as PCS, Fix NICS, suicide prevention, Don’t Lie for the Other Guy, and Operation Secure Store.

The last two initiatives, Keane pointed out, are in conjunction with ATF.

So much, it seems, for the Biden promise to seek unity among Americans.

The irony’s not lost on Keane. “We are mindful of President Biden’s divisive rhetoric,” he said, “he called our industry the ‘enemy’ and Senate Majority Leader Schumer called us ‘evil.’”

If there’s any doubt that this administration intends to crack down on gun owners, the nomination of David Chipman as Director of the ATF should remove them.

A 25-year agent with the ATF, Chipman left the agency in 2012. From there, he became a “senior adviser” to Everytown for Gun Safety, then senior vice president of Public Safety Solutions for three years before arriving at Giffords in 2016 as a senior policy adviser.

In those positions, Chipman left no doubt that he was a zealot when it came to gun control, writing op-eds and appearing in the media to pass on his belief that gun violence was out of control and, more disturbingly, the agency (ATF) “lacks for the law enforcement tools that are necessary to curb this national epidemic.” That, FYI, is a direct quote from an op-ed he wrote for Politico in 2013.

There’s no doubt that the administration intends to try and convince gun owners that the “right” memorialized in the Bill of Rights is -at least in their eyes- a “privilege” they’re planning to limit however possible.

That’s not just my opinion. Last night, I got this message from the NSSF’s Keane: “

“We see Mr. Chipman’s nomination as a troubling reversal of years of pro-active safety cooperation between ATF and the firearm community.”

Seems the battle lines are resolving, and we’re in for another tough fight.

As always, we’ll keep you posted.

—Jim Shepherd

 
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