Cumberland Times-News

Michael A Sawyers - Outdoors

August 24, 2013

We are well-armed in Md.

Those Marylanders who hate guns can thank Gov. Martin O’Malley and his minions at the General Assembly for making the state’s citizenry among the most well-armed in the country.

Once the governor announced that he intended to push for legislation that would outlaw certain firearms and make it more difficult to purchase others, residents of Maryland got out their credit cards, cash and checks. Some of those folks already knew the locations of gun dealers. But a whole bunch of others did not. By droves, they would become first-time gun buyers.

People who had never touched a trigger or handled a cartridge would become owners of 9mm pistols and .44 revolvers. They would punch the coordinates of local gun ranges into their GPS units.

Then, when the General Assembly passed, and the governor signed Senate Bill 281, the purchasing became even more intense. Citizens knew that if they didn’t buy a semi-automatic .223 rifle with a pistol grip by Oct. 1 they would not be allowed to buy one at all. They came to understand that the purchase of a handgun — something as common as a run-of-the-mill, five-shot, .357 revolver — would become more cumbersome and expensive, requiring a state fee just to be able to make the transaction.

The bottom line is that some of the more restrictive gun laws in the country have made Maryland one of the more ballistically fortified states in the union.

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction and all that.

And what about the people who already own firearms and use them to hunt, shoot targets and protect their homes? They bought more, some increasing their arsenals substantially and stacking boxes of shells rows deep in their gun safes.

Some bought firearms to stash away and give to their children and unborn grandchildren. Other bought them as investments, anticipating a rise in value with the passage of time and the constrictions of law.

Local gun dealers tell me that the upcoming restrictions actually resulted in increased sales of firearms that won’t be affected. In other words, this guy goes into the gun shop checking on handguns and military-style, semi-automatic .223 rifles (I refuse to call them assault rifles) and sees a pump shotgun he likes or maybe a .22 rifle and gets out the plastic.

So ... how many firearms that require a background check by state police are Marylanders buying?

This is out of a recent story by the Associated Press.

“So far this year, we have received a total of 71,894 purchase applications, which exceeds last year’s total of 70,099 and certainly 2010’s total of 38,712,” said (a Maryland State Police spokesman).  

“Our weekly average of applications received is 2,363.”

Now that’s what I call boom, boom, boom!

Contact Michael A. Sawyers at msawyers@times-news.com.

1
Text Only
Michael A Sawyers - Outdoors
  • No Bambi for you, Mrs. Doe

    Some people want so badly for deer birth control to work that they actually think it will, even on wild populations.
    I wish I had a couple bridges to sell.
    A week ago on the Outdoors page we ran the deer there do what deer  everywhere do. They eat the easiest food available such as gardens and ornamental plantings. They walk in front of moving cars. They give ticks and  parasites a place to live.

    April 19, 2014

  • Black bear biologist explains new hunt

    The Maryland Wildlife & Heritage Service has abandoned the bear harvest quota system in use for 10 hunting seasons and has set the next two hunts at four days apiece.

    April 5, 2014

  • MIKE SAWYERS South Branch of Potomac River best place in W.Va. for trophy rainbows

    I always enjoy the annual roundup supplied by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources that reveals where all the trophy fish were caught.

    March 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • MIKE SAWYERS Mettiki will once again produce trout

    Brian Richardson is confident that the Maryland Fisheries Service will, little by little and year by year, get to the point where full production is restored to the state’s trout hatchery system, meaning that fish will no longer have to be purchased from private sources.

    March 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • The answer my friend ...

    Recently, the Times-News published
    a photograph of sea gulls that had
    landed on the parking lot at Braddock
    Square Shopping
    Center in LaVale
    My first thought
    was, “If those sea
    gulls landed in the
    Gunpowder River or
    Big Hunting Creek
    on their way here
    from the ocean I
    hope they didn’t have
    felt soles on their
    feet, otherwise they
    will spread rock snot
    to our trout streams
    in Allegany and Garrett counties.”

    March 15, 2014

  • Gobbler stuff can get crazy

    Tough, old bird
    The third gobbler I killed was in 1990 while hunting on Pond Hill near McCoole. Relatively early in the morning I sent out a couple yelp calls. Immediately, 75-100 yards away, what sounded like three gobblers got into a fight.

    March 8, 2014

  • MIKE SAWYERS Almost Maryland welcomes you back

    If you are a hunter in Almost Maryland, circle Thursday on your calendar so you don’t forget to attend the 7 p.m. hearing at Mountain Ridge High School in Frostburg that deals with proposed hunting regulations for the next two years.

    March 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • MIKE SAWYERS Gobbler radar activated

    With only 54 days until it opens, the Maryland spring gobbler season is officially on the radar.

    February 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • MIKE SAWYERS Region A buck, doe changes possible

    The Maryland Wildlife & Heritage Service, the Allegany-Garrett Sportsmen’s Association, the Quality Deer Management Association and the Washington County Federation of Sportsmen have hashed out a new deer hunting concept for Region A, which includes Garrett, Allegany and the western portion of Washington counties.

    February 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • MIKE SAWYERS Meshach Browning would say ‘Just do it’

    I wonder if it is possible to attach a
    GPS unit to legislation that has been
    introduced at the Maryland General
    Assembly.

    February 1, 2014 1 Photo

Latest news
Facebook
Must Read
House Ads