Photo Eric Cutright

Joe Manchin test fires an A-R 15 rifle at a private range in Barbour County during his days as Governor. The rifle he’s shooting is among those under debate in the wake of the Newtown school shootings.

A pro-Second Amendment organization in West Virginia is outraged over Senator Joe Manchin’s proclamation the time has come to pursue gun control legislation.

“Senator Elmer Fudd should be aware the Second Amendment is not about deer hunting,” said Keith Morgan, President of the West Virginia Citizens Defense League. “We are definitely going to remember this on his next election cycle.  It will be my life’s mission to make sure the state does not forget this on his next election cycle.”

Morgan and his organization plan a protest Saturday morning at Manchin’s Charleston office.   He says already they have received responses “in the hundreds” who plan to attend the event.

“There’s no such thing as ‘reasonable legislation’ on this,” Morgan said. “The legislation will have absolutely no effect and my thought is anyone who trusts only criminals and government to have effective means of self defense is a fool.”

Manchin drew national attention with his remarks in the wake of the Newtown school shootings on Tuesday.  

“We have this horrific, horrific crime against our children.  It needs to be dealt with and it needs to be done in the most serious fashion,” Senator Manchin said on Monday’s MetroNews Talkline.

Manchin has always carried the mantra of being a friend of firearms owners.  He’s consistently given an “A” rating by the NRA and has routinely won their endorsement, including in the most recent November election.  Morgan calls it a consistent mistake by the NRA.

“I’ve been saying since 2004 Manchin is ragingly anti-gun,” Morgan said. “He’s managed to hide that view, but during his tenure as governor, he managed to insure no pro-gun bills of any substance made it out of the legislature.”

Amid ramped up talks of gun control legislation.   Gun sales are reportedly soaring.   One caller to MetroNews indicated a long line at the Cabela’s gun counter in Charleston.    Officials with Gander Mountain, which bills itself as “West Virginia’s Largest Gun Store” had no comment when contacted by MetroNews.

Pittsburgh based Dick’s Sporting Goods suspended all sales of modern sporting rifles at its stores nationwide.   Out of respect to the victims, the company also removed all guns from its store closest toNewtown,CT.



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  • Jim

    More babies are killed through abortions that guns and you want to control guns. Joe you say you want gun control but you never go anywhere without a armed bodyguard. You don't give up your guns, why should we. The 2nd Amendment is for the citizens to protect ourselves from the government. How can we protect ourselves if the government takes our guns away. Above all let us not forget how many innocent children that our government have killed with it's drones in the last four years.

  • johnny

    People need to stop blaming guns for crimes. they can't pull there own trigger. justice systems need to stop slapping criminals on the wrist and make them take responsibility for there actions. I agree nut cases need not have guns. however enforce the laws already in effect.

  • Keefe

    Sometimes you wish politicians would actually get it right,but they would not be a politician if they did. Common sense tells me guns only kill if some one pulls the trigger. The days are evil and evil men rule our country and promote despicable atrocities such as same sex marriage and abortion.Then shutter at something like this. What is their solution?Tighten the ever spinning vice of government control over the citizens of the once free American people. What a bunch of hypocrites.

    • Jay

      So as far as gun control goes its ok for the US government to supply rebel forces (ie Taliban in afghan war) with fully automatic weapons, machine guns, grenades, rockets and missiles. Which end up in the hands of children who use them to kill other children. But we as a free law-biding citizens should not have the right to arm ourselves with whatever weapon we so choose? Laws are laws period it is illegal to kill someone- yet criminals do it everyday. Law biding citizens do not kill people. So what will gun laws do only stop law biding citizens from having the weapons that the criminals will have. That's it end of discussion. Do I need a 30 round magazine I hope the hell not but i have them just in case I do.

    • Debbie


    • GregG

      Gee Keefe, you left out the old "you took God out of our schools" excuse. How anyone could blame gays or a rape victim that had an abortion for the events that took place at Sandy Hook is beyound ridiculous.

  • Barney

    Will sombody give me one good reason why anybody would want an assult weapon?

    Thank you in advance.

    • Wowbagger

      An AR-15 or an Ak-47 sold in the US to citizens is not an assault weapon! They are not capable of bursts or fully automatic fire.

      Here is your good reason: To ward off a home invader with an AR-15, an AK-47, or perhaps even a Glock pistol..

      • Barney

        So, I'm assuming your reason is "fear".
        I understand.

        Thanks for your reply.

        • Mac

          I have asked the same question Barney and have yet to get a valid response that isn't driven by paranoia and fear. Quite frankly I'm very concerned that these paranoid "government conspiracy" loons are the ones holding these weapons. I'm sure they're not all mentally ill, but certainly schizophrenia has to be a prime concern...

          • Debbie

            Mac you are kidding me. you think everyone that owns a so called assault rifle is paranoia or fearful. We do not need your concern about our so called paranoid "government conspiracy" If anyone is a loon that would be you. Just because we have different views about our government and guns doesn't make us unstable. I think you need to open your eyes and see what is going on in these country. So do not tell me you are concerned for me I will be fine because I'm wide awake.

      • Mac

        An AR-15 is a terrible weapon for home security. Any high power rifle is. The bullets will pass through the walls like paper and you risk hitting unintended targets. Using an AR-15 in this manner goes against all rational thought and firearms training. Go ahead, use a high power rifle for home defense.

        • Mike

          Actually, an AR-15 is a great home defense weapon. Loaded with highly frangible bullets, a 223 round has great difficulty in passing through multiple walls. However, when passing through a wall comprised of drywall, a 357 round loaded with hollow-point bullets, you know the classic home defense round, the hollow-point will fill up with the drywall and not expand, thus cruising through multiple walls. Homework is fun, do some and get back with me on this.

      • tom

        iam with you.

  • Mac

    I want one person to tell me what you need an AR-15 with 30 round magazine for. Anyone? It sure isn't for hunting. Unless you're hunting human beings. That is exactly what that weapon is designed for, slaughtering people. No civilian needs one.

    Gun control is not an outright ban on all guns. No one is going to take your deer rifle. Please use some sense people. There are weapons that no civilian should possess. There are people who should possess no weapons. If you can agree with either of my last two statements then you believe in gun control.

    • michael

      Evidently Mac, you haven't been reading. The Second Amendment is not about hunting. It never was about hunting. It never will be reinterpreted legitimately to be about hunting. There is no food, Diane, in his thought. His argument is based on a false foundation. Once more, the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was not about hunting. Is it ok that I am using my First Amendment rights here, or should I ask the populace or the government for permission?

    • Debbie

      Mac I'll tell you what a AR-15 is for. Shooting targets,( not people unless) of foreign invasion,in defense against our own government if need be. Also what gives you the right our anyone else to tell me what I can own. You anti-gun people don't have to purchase a gun, but you do not have the right to tell me what I can spend my money on or what I can or can not own. unless I break the law or if I'm mentally ill. I am a mother and a grandmother and I chose to defend my children how I see fit. If I had been at that school that tragic Friday you would have had one died,(the shooter) not 27 defenseless souls. You ever heard of fighting fire with fire?

    • Wayne

      First off Any gun is designed to expel a tiny object at high speed and do it efficiently.
      all guns are designed to work in conjunction with a human so far the only thing I'm convinced of is that the human element is the only element that can go rogue. I have never seen an evil inanimate object of any type.
      Anybody talking about not selling guns to minors, or making it illegal for mentally challenged people to posess any potentially dangerous thing. I would think that a person driving a car through a mall for example would not bring up a discussion on banning cars. (Just saying.) lets actually target the problem. and realize the problem doesn't end with a new law, or even get better.

      • Mac

        Again with a car comparison? Cars can only be driven by qualified operators, but a gun can be sold to anyone. You don't think that in itself is a little bit crazy? We have the DMV to control who operates a car, but there is no such agency to control who owns a gun. Why do we have more restrictions on who car drive than on who can shoot?

    • Bill

      Why do we need a car that will go 140 or alcohol thats 100 proof, how many people are killed by drunk drivers?, so by your way of thinking we should ban them too.Them weapons should have been locked up and maybe this wouldn't have happened.

      • Mac

        Shadow, you're paranoid. Obama has proposed exactly ZERO items of gun legislation. Wake up and realize you're being confused by propaganda and lies. Furthermore, George H. Bush passed a law that banned assault rifles and high capacity magazines. George W. Bush took it off the books. Ironically, mass shootings have skyrocketed since. I'm sure there's no correlation...

        Bill, cars are designed for transportation. What purpose do firearms serve that does not involve killing? As for drinking and driving, really? I guess that's a good comparison, because it is illegal. So by your thinking guns should be illegal just like drinking and driving. Besides, please show me the drunk driver that killed 20 elementary school children and 7 adults.

        Also, no one has given a (non delusional) answer to my question. Why do you need an assault rifle with 30 round magazine?

        • Shadow

          Maybe I have just read too many of Obama's words and his actions about guns being controlled and the reading the history of countries that outlawed guns, like Russia, Germany, Turkey,and it goes on. The number of people killed by those government does make one go paranoid. The consoling thought is that the 300 million guns in this country and folks that can use them relieves the condition somewhat.

          • Mac

            Maybe you believe propaganda a little too much. The GOP has been using the 3G platform in WV since GWB. God, Guns and Gays.... It's just political propaganda. If you really listened to Obama, and did research on Congressional votes you could see through it.

        • Wayne

          It was the Clinton gun ban not Bush.
          Bush's admin let it expire
          also for the confused, It wasn't the Bush tax cuts either, that was a rollback of the Clinton tax increases
          check your facts, mass shootings were at the lowest point in history in 2011 and have been falling since 1920"s when they were the highest
          and as for your question about the need for a rifle with a 30 round magazine a good enough reason is to protect my family and property these are the most common rifle in the US and more people are trained to use them safely than anything out there (ex military).

          • Mac

            Let me know when you have something for me to look over that proves mass shootings are down. I'm really interested to see that.

          • Mac

            Thanks for the correction. I had thought it was passed in 91 and expired in 01. Although I would like to see some sort of statistics and proof that shootings are down, especially given that the United States ranks 12th in the world in gun related deaths. We're ranked higher than Afghanistan and Iraq btw...(According to Forbes)

    • Shadow

      I would say that the coming USA Bankruptcy and following civil disorder certainly is enough to require everyone to have sufficient firepower to protect themselves and their family. Brother Adolph Obama is doing his best to disarm his opposition so he can establish a state like the 30's Germany with him in charge..

    • Diane

      Well said Mac. Hopefully your comment can give some food for thought.

  • joey sutton

    another great move from GO WITH THE FLOW JOE. remember he funded planned parenthood too!

  • Thoms

    2009 Violent Crime rate comparisons
    UK (included England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland due to how available census records are reordered)
    UK 2009 est. total pop – 598,53,300
    Violent crime defined as violence against the person (such as physical assault), robbery (stealing by force or threat of force) and sexual offences (including rape and sexual assault).
    Total Violent Crime – 1,056,064
    Which equals
    1764.41 per 100,000 victims of violent crime.
    United States – self explanatory
    USA 2009 est total pop – 305,000,000
    Violent crime defined as In the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Violent crimes are defined in the UCR Program as those offenses which involve force or threat of force.
    Total Violent Crime -1,318,398
    Which equals
    432.26 per 100,000 victims of violent crime (google search for link)

    Just and FYI before we start discussing who really has a violent crime problem . Apparently firearms aren’t the sole predictor for violent crime … They media lies say it isn’t so!!!!

  • Allen

    Joe Manchin is a common sense person. I'm suer Joe only has the best interests of the citizens at heart. Unfortunately, the pro gun lobby, NRA, wants no restrictions or laws on guns whatsoever. Look, it's like this. We have all types of laws governing how we can use a car, how fast we can go, red lights,and so on. And yet, the government isn't trying to take your car. That is just the bill of goods the NRA wants you to buy. Use your God given brains, people. Joe Manchin is a good man and a great senator. However he votes on this issue, it will be in the peoples best interest.

    • Wowbagger

      Joe Manchin is grandstanding and taking advantage of a tragedy to promote himself!

    • Adam


      Your statement that the NRA wants no restrictions on firearms is completely inaccurate. They support many. Just maybe not as many as you do. A true discussion should at least begin with an honest assessment of both sides views. Your comment is either dishonest or ill informed.

  • Diane

    Gun control needed to be enacted over 100 years ago in order for it to have been effective. No private citizen has need for a weapon with the capability to shoot dozens of people in just a few blinks of the eye. The 2nd Ammendment was not written in order to give a private citizen the firepower to outgun either the law or our own military. Just another distortative interpretation like so many others dealing with the rights granted us. And for all you pro-gun anti life nut jobs ... your right to a gun does not supercede my, my families, or anyone elses, right to life.

    • Wayne

      You are misled, you seem to think the government gave you the right to bear arms when in fact the second amendment if read correctly affirms that the right to self protection and how one achieves that is a God given right that the Federal government
      has no authority to infringe on and that all mass murders are in government mandated "gun free zones where there is a guaranteed "target rich environment" where there will be little to no resistance. Since we are reactionary and seem to think that a new law is needed when in fact enforcement is.
      What we have learned in the past was that after something happened in an airport they put in screening x-ray machines and pat-downs etc. also courthouses, govt buildings etc you have to go past people and machines designed and trained to make sure that which is restricted doesn't get in. but at schools they thought it would be too traumatic on the children. It was only a matter of time until somebody took the bait. I still can't see how taking the "good guys" guns away or more restrictions on people who could have stopped this.

      We need to actually think about the consequences of a law intelligently, before enacting, and try to look into the past and see what such laws in the past have done.

      Remember: Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Gun control laws make crime worse. period. It's a FACT.

    • Jon

      Excuse me Diane, but it seems that the education system failed you as well as the other 50 million who voted for O'Bama. The 2nd amendment is absolutely in place to protect us from our government, and not our neighbor. While this shooting is indeed tragically horrifiying, one mentally challenged human should not change laws for millions who are law abiding. We all cry for the 28 deceased in Connecticut, but I must ask, how many tears did you shed for the millions who were killed with a vacuum. Lets outlaw those.

      • Diane

        Because my interpretation of the constitution differs from yours, that possibly my education gave me the ability to think for myself, then I must be educationally lacking or an Obama voter? That is what is wrong with you people. You act like someone wants to come in to your house and pry your guns out of your hands. This is about weapons that never belonged in the hands of the public to begin with and are nothing but killing machines. You take the conversation, much like you have taken the constitution, and twist it in your little mind and end up with some BS line that makes no sense to anyone but you and the sheeple who think like you. That is as rude as I will get, and I do aplogize, but you kinda ticked me off with your assumptions about me. If I have to be labeled a liberal and an Obma voter to believe that something needs to be done in this country to stem the violence and the senseless assassination of our future, I will gladly accept the labeling.

        • Ben

          For all those that think the US would be a better place without guns take a look in the history books. Look at all the countries that have had strict gun laws in the past and see what happened. The right to bare arms was put in place to protect us from government. This country was founded by people who wanted freedom. Take away the 2nd Amendment and watch our freedom slowly drift away. P. S. I have 3 kids and have cried several times after this unthinkable tragedy. Gun control will not help this. People that do these things will build bombs and use anything they can to harm others. Gun control will only put more people in dangers way!!!

    • Ron

      You must not understand history. Our second amendment was enacted to prevent the government from being the only ones armed. If you believe the citizens of the good ole United States of Obama shouldn't be armed to the gills you are mistaken. Your answer is to take away more and more rights from good people. So what you don't like guns. That doesn't mean they should be outlawed. I don't like liberals. Lets outlaw them. ( or socialists).

      • Diane

        Sorry Ron, but I do understand history, and I know why the 2nd Amenment was enacted. And sorry again Ron, I am not a liberal or a socialist, far from it. What I am is a mother and grandmother, citizen of WV, that is tired of seeing everyday the death of our nation at the wrong end of a gun. There has never been a reason for an AR or semi AR to have been made to the public. Never any reason for any item to help modify those weapons, to feed them their ammo. NEVER NEVER NEVER. Yet here we are having a debate over them after the latest heinous act perpetrated by a lunatic. The deaths of 20 6 and 7 year olds. How can you or anyone else justify that? Yeah, the gun didn't shoot itself, but if it had never been made available to any Tom, Dick, Harry or Nancy, these 26 innocents might still be here. I will reiterate my former comment ... no ones right to own a gun supercedes my, my families, or anyone elses right to live.

  • Tony

    What a sad life's mission and what a narrow minded mentality. Looney Tunes, indeed.

  • Michael

    Wow!! Senator Manchin wants to do something that may or may not help with the safety of our people and especially our children. If we do nothing, that sure won't help. If we do something and it still doesn't help, well at least we tried something. And the best the guy can come up with in his article is "Senator Elmer Fudd". Great One Dude and real professional! Also, you will make it your life's mission to see that he doesn't get's mission....really, how about your family or God? Make that your life's mission. It will be a life better served.

  • John weaver

    Please stand up to gun fundamentalist who put their desires for stockpiles and high powered rifles over anyone's safety including the life of young people who have yet to form their own voices. There must be common ground for gun control and gun rights. There can be if all politicians find the courage to stand up to the NRA and their proportionally small numbers of supporters.

    • michael

      First of all, not all gun owners need "stockpiles" of weapons, but you are taking the leftist argument that is the same recycled garbage of the typical anti-gunner. You seem to make gun owners seem like war mongering arsenals, when fact is, they are some of the most moral people you will ever meet, and very law abiding. If they want to own some guns, then so what? I have very few myself. Nonetheless, the Second Amendment to The Constitution of the United States which has given you the freedom to spew what you do through the First Amendment...and you have that right....was put there not for hunting but to keep us safe from tyranny. "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free state....." So when you look overseas at some of these countries where dictatorship is established, you often see oppressed people with nothing but rocks to throw as they are killed for trying to fight for rights of humanity. Perhaps they are run over with tanks. Nobody is there to provide justice for them. The founding fathers saw possible abuses and integrated these God given rights into the Constitution. Read the document, it was ratified in 1789 if memory serves correctly and as Americans we should know our Constitution. It has been the basis of law that has made us the great nation we are today. It allows for law and order and equal protection under law with due process. The NRA has been defending Second Amendment rights that we already have and teaching gun safety sir. As gun rights supporters, we most truly feel for victims of all crime, but understand that if you give up your rights, you won't get them back. Which right, John, would you like to give up next? Pick one....don't bother.... because once the Constitution is subverted by corrupt politicians and begins to unravel, life as you knew it will forever change. All the rights that any of your relatives fought for in foreign wars will be in vain. Merry Christmas everbody, may God bless us.

  • Sam Stone

    I voted for Joe the past two elections. I won't make that mistake again.

    • Shadow

      I thought that Joe was going to run for Vice-President.

    • Wowbagger

      No offense Sam, but I would say that Ole Joe doesn't plan to run again. He is looking for publicity. After this term he will be 71 and I predict will retire with all of the retirement perks to become a high paid lobbyist. Politicians are not to be trusted if they will never run again.

      Frankly, John Raese would not be doing this if he had defeated Ole Joe the politico.

  • dad

    if someone shot your 6 year old would you still want to protect his rights as a sportsman? enough is enough . time to tell the NRA your wrong!

    • Mike

      There is probably 500-1000 guns at Cabelas, and a million customers walk thru the doors a year, and not one shooting, hu that tells me guns don't kill people IDIOTS do!!!!

      • Steve

        Limiting these large capacity clips and semi- automatic weapons may mitigate some of the destruction these "idiots" can do. We will never stop all of these occurances, but we can limit some of the damage.

    • Wowbagger

      The second amendment is not about sports or hunting it is our god given right to self defense that should not be compromised.

    • Matt

      I would absolutely tell a person he has the rights to be a sportsman if he shot my six year old, apples to oranges here goofball

      • mother

        think about what you just said

  • Doug Palmer

    I do agree that the 2nd amendment is not about hunting but our right to bear arms for protection of our family and others in life threatening instances.

    The media reported the news and an instant knee jerks reaction of our politicians ensued.

    • Matthew

      The 2nd amendment is about the right to form Militias. It has no relevance to personal gun ownership or the protection of families.

      Also, I question the assumption in the quote above -- “The legislation will have absolutely no effect and my thought is anyone who trusts only criminals and government to have effective means of self defense is a fool.”

      Is your owning a gun really effective means of self-defense? Not against a government that has artillery and tanks and helicopters. So do we need to own those things too? Its a romantic notion that is just too dangerous for a sane society to embrace any longer.

      • DanceswithGlocks

        Incorrect, Matthew. The 2nd Amendment is an INDIVIDUAL right not belonging to the government. The Supreme Court has confirmed this in D.C. v Heller (2008). The Supreme Court firmly established the 2nd Amendment is an individual right, as they had in Cruikshank and Dred Scott.
        Also, in McDonald v Chicago (2010) the Supreme Court concluded the right is incorporated against the states via the 14th Amendment. In the Dred Scott case (1856), the Supreme Court ruled that the protected rights of citizens to keep and bear arms is a right equal in weight to the other freedoms enumerated in the constitution.

        Of course no one is advocating for citizens to own tanks, nukes, etc. However, the founding fathers (read The Federalist Papers, or just google it) intention was for every free citizen to have access to the same rifle and ammunition currently in use by the standing army. In those days it was muzzleloaders, today it is the M16/AR15.

        In response to your question: is your owning a gun really an effective means of self-defense? Firearms in private hands are used an estimated 2.5 million times (or 6,849 times each day) each year to prevent crime; this includes rapes, aggravated assaults, and kidnapping. But, I think the best answer would be for you to ask a violent criminal what he's most afraid of running into while he's about to commit a crime, a cop or an armed citizen.

        My question I pose to all of you that support newer gun restrictions are:
        1. If you and your children were face-to-face with a male attacker twice your size, what would you do if you were unarmed? If you were armed? What if you were faced with a group of attackers?
        2. If guns are "too dangerous" to be in our society, then why do our leaders want to be the only ones who have them? Do you trust our leaders implicitly to protect you at all times?

      • Mac

        In 1783 a militia was the national defense. People forget or simply don't know that the nation had no professional military at the time.

    • Don Jr.

      Doug, You are exactly right and well said. I tried to say the same to Senator Manchin in a letter last night but did not get it done in as few words. I'll try to past the letter in this comment.
      Honorable Senator,
      I would like to express concern about our possible response in the form of tougher gun laws in response to this terrible tragedy. I truly believe that it would only make matters worse in elevating the value of the banned weapons and heightend criminal activity that would most assuredly follow. NBC had reported early in the aftermath that the weapons used were "legal" and actually pushed out this view many times even though it is incorrect. The guns may have been legally purchased by someone, but once they become stolen they are no longer legal to the thief. There are already laws in place that makes it illegal to kill someone or steal weapons. Those laws did not prevent this from happening, nor will additional gun regulations. I maintain that the media itself bears more responsibility in this type of case than a perceived lack of gun regulations. The reason that I would make such a statement is that these perpetrators that are labled, and indeed are, mentally disturbed commit these horrendous acts for the fame or notoriety that the media always, without fail, provides them. Even though these folks are mentally disturbed, I feel sure that most of them understand that they are doing evil and are looking to exit on a national or world stage. In other words, If we must give up a constitutional right to combat this evil I would much rather give up the national media than the right to freely bear arms. To be quite honest, without a national media, I do not think many of these type of cases would exist at all. However, I do not really believe that we should combat this evil by giving up anything that is constitutional. Rather, all that we can do is work and work hard daily, both collectively and as individuals. The best way that I can put it is in simple terms as I have evidenced in my life. I own a small 8 acre brush farm that I toil on quite frequently. There are many evils that constantly try to take over this land (Poison Ivy, Thorns, Thistles, Weeds, Moles, Groundhogs, etc....) If I work hard daily at ridding the land of these evils, God allows me to have victory over them. If I quit the evils return. I feel it is much the same with our nation. If we all work hard to rid our land of evil of violence, and keep at it, I think the Lord will allow victory. This violence is deep rooted in our culture with it being taught to our children in the form of TV, Video Games, etc. I cannot even watch these modern television shows or video games they are so riddled with extreme violence. The weak, fragile, young, among us just cannot handle this brush with evil. Unfortunately, trying to regulate these evil forces from a government level, through more laws, often time seems to only make them stronger. Maybe it is going to take leadership, commitment, and stewardship from us all.
      Thanks, Don