grv readers ridiculing the ludicrous proposal.rnAnother bill sought to make organ-harvestingrnmandatory. Even the director ofrnHawaii’s organ bank was appalled. Again,rna flood of letters protested the bill. If thernstate can take your body parts, what can’trnit claim? Does liberty mean anything tornwould-be lieart and eye grabbers?rnApparentiy not. hi that same session,rnthe Hawaii legislature was filled with proposalsrnfor restrictive and unconstitutionalrngun laws. Much to the surprise of lawmakers,rnHawaii’s supporters of the SecondrnAmendment got angry —and forrngood reason.rnConsider the following proposals:rnMandator)’ re-registration of firearms ever)’rnfive years; mandatory “safe-storage” ofrnall firearms in a commercial gun safe;rnforcing medical personnel to provide thernpolice chief with the names of patientsrnseeking psychiatric care or counseling sornthe chief could confiscate the patients’rnguns (doctor-pafient privilege, anyone?);rnrestricting ammunition sales to thosernv’ho can prove the)- have a legally registeredrnfirearm in that particular caliber;rnbanning individuals who have sold a gunrnfrom buying a new one for ten years; creatingrna “firearm-owner identificationrncard”; and, of course, outlawing the salernand ownership of all handguns. It wasrnenough to make Sen. Charles Schumerrntake out an NRA membership.rnA bill to make it easier for citizens torncarry concealed weapons was also introduced,rnbut it went nowhere. Technically,rnHawaii has concealed-carry permits,rnbut they are onlv issued to civilians at therndiscretion of their local police chief.rnAbout a dozen people in the islands —outrnof a population of over one m i l l i o n -rnhave a permit.rnMost of the gun-control bills were introducedrnin response to a shooting spreernat the Honolulu Xerox building. Yet thernonly proposed legislation that could havernprevented the Xerox killings was the billrnliberalizing the issuance of concealedcarr)-rnpermits. Een with the Xerox incident,rngun deaths are rare in Hawaii. Thernstate ranks 49th in overall gun deaths andrn44th in firearm-related homicides. Inrnan)- gi en year, about 24 people are murderedrnin Hawaii; about six of those homicidesrnare committed with a gun.rnHawaiian guno-wners have been throughrnthis before. A previous attempt to banrnhandguns in the early 1990’s was defeated,rnbut a law was passed making itrnmandator)- for anyone buying a handgunrnto go through a minimum of six hours ofrntraining. The waiting period for handgunrnpurchases in Hawaii is two weeks.rnThe ten-round capacity limit on semi-automadcrnpistols was in effect long beforernthe Brady Bill. All new guns are registeredrnwith the state.rnDespite all the laws restricting thernright of Hawaii’s people to keep and bearrnarms, the state has a very lively firearmsrncommunity. On any weekend, you canrngo to the Koko Head public shootingrnrange and find sportsmen from everyrnwalk of life. It is always busy, and you canrneasily wait an hour for a firing line tornopen up. All of the state’s prestigious privaternschools, such as Kamehan-ieha, St.rnLouis, and Punahou, have teams thatrncompete in small-bore rifle tournaments.rnApparentiy, someone at these schools understandsrnthat a child with a gun in hisrnhand is not always a psychotic monster.rnTourists who never venture far beyondrnWaikiki don’t realize how rural largernparts of Hawaii are. Go to an outer islandrnlike Kauai or the Big Island, and you willrnsee farms and old pickup trucks withrn”Keep the Country Counfrv!” bumperrnstickers. Better yet, go to Molokai, an islandrnwith no fast-food restaurants, no trafficrnlights, and just a single stop sign. Peoplernlive off the land, and that often meansrnventuring into the mountains, huntingrnfor game birds, mountain sheep, or thernwild boars Hawaii is known for. Thernsame can be said for those Oahuans whornlive far from the hustle and bustle, inrnplaces like Makaha or the North Shore,rnNot ever-one who throws a luau buys hisrnpork from Safeway, and not evervonernlives in a Honolulu high-rise where gunrnownership is declasse.rnWlien tire gun-control activists launchedrntheir latest attacks, the firearms con-imunityrndefended itself Republican StaternSen. Sam Slom brought in John Lott, authorrnof the definitive More Guns, LessrnCrime, to speak to the legislature aboutrnthe benefits of concealed-carry laws andrnthe dangers and ineffectiveness of manyrnof the proposed gun-control measures.rnRenowned civilian and law-enforcementrntrainer Chuck Taylor sat in on one of thernproceedings. (Shocked by the strong anti-rngun rhetoric of Honolulu Police DepartmentrnMajor John Kerr, Taylor commented,rn”You guys got a problem here.rnIt’s your cops.”) At open hearings, ninerntimes as many citizens showed up to opposernthe gun-control bills as did to supportrnthem. Of course, the Senate JudiciaryrnCommittee report described thernanti-gun partisans as “rational and extremelyrnsane” while the pro-gun-rightsrnpeople were dismissed as “very opinionated.”rnBut most letter writers to the HonolulurnAdvertiser and the Honolulu Star-rnBulletin supported gun rights, in contrastrnto the editorial stance of both newspapers.rnDid all this work on behalf of the SecondrnAmendment pay off? Amazingly, itrndid. None of the really repressive guncontrolrnmeasures became law, and arnmovement of farmers, blue-collar workers,rnex-military personnel, and other everydayrncitizens defeated a schemernhatched by politicians and bureaucrats.rnIt was a great victor)- for libert)-.rnHawaii’s citizens have had to swallow arnlot of nonsense over the past 50 years. Asrnthe battle over gun rights shows, theyrnmight have had their fill.rnBrandon Bosworth calls Aiea, Hawaii—rnthe largest all-vowel city in the UnitedrnStates—home.rnLetter From thernUpper Midwestrnby Sean ScallonrnA World Series?rnSt. Louis Cardinals slugger and homerunrnrecord holder Mark McCwire had arnbone to pick with Major League Baseball.rnHe was none too happ- that the firstrnregular season game of the 2000 campaign,rnmatching the Chicago Cubs andrnthe New York Mets, was played outsidernthe United States — in Japan, no less.rnThe major leagues had sold out for money,rnMcGwire said, in staging the gamesrnoverseas. Now, there’s a surprise.rnMcGwire was the first athlete in anyrnmajor professional sport to -oice misgivingsrnabout playing a regular season gamernoutside the United States. Baseball hasrnjoined professional hocke)- and basketballrnin forcing regular fans, at least thosernnot prone to insomnia, to wait a day tornfind out how their teams fared. Pro footballrnhas played overseas exhibition gamesrnfor several years.rnBut McGwire may be wrong when hernSEPTEMBER 2000/37rnrnrn