Chad’s Morning Brief: NRA Takes on Open Carry Texas, Minors Flooding Texas Border Costing Taxpayers Billions, and Other Top Stories
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of June 3, 2014. Give me your feedback below and tune in to The Chad Hasty Show for these and many more topics from 8:30 to 11am. Remember, you can listen online at KFYO.com or on your iPhone/Android with the radioPup App.
Important Election Dates:
Early Voting for the District 3 Runoff Election: June 9-17
Election Day for Lubbock City Council District 3 Runoff: June 21
NRA Takes on Open Carry Texas
The NRA on Monday blasted the group Open Carry Texas by calling the group's open carry rallies at restaurants "weird" and "counter-productive". According to the San Antonio Express News, Open Carry Texas responded by saying the NRA has "lost its relevance".
Tactics used by the group Open Carry Texas are being outlawed by at least six national restaurant chains and criticized by the diehard pro-gun National Rifle Association following recent demonstrations by the group's San Antonio chapter at a local Chili's and Sonic.
The growing grassroots Second Amendment organization has gained national attention for holding rallies across Texas, including last year at the Alamo, in which members openly tote long guns, including semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15. Members have published a number of videos online in which they walk into restaurants, most recently the two San Antonio establishments, with semi-automatic rifles strapped to their back seemingly to see the response of management.
A post on the NRA's Legislative Action website Friday called the group's open carry displays in restaurants “weird,” “scary,” “counter-productive” and “downright foolishness.” Chili's and Sonic issued statements Friday requesting that patrons not openly carry firearms in their restaurants.
“Using guns merely to draw attention to yourself in public not only defies common sense, it shows a lack of consideration and manners,” the NRA's lobbying arm wrote in the post. “That's not the Texas way. And that's certainly not the NRA way.”
The two videos from the San Antonio chapter of Open Carry Texas were published to YouTube about two weeks ago and removed less than an hour later “because the images could easily be misinterpreted,” the group's president C.J. Grisham said.
One shows a group of eight men carrying long guns entering a Chili's and asking for a table but being asked to leave by a manager and a confrontation with a patron who said “there are children here.” A similar visit to Sonic ended with the group being asked to leave the patio area. Both videos were re-uploaded by left-leaning publication Mother Jones after they were deleted by the group.
Following the videos, Grisham, an Army master sergeant who lives in Temple, last week asked members to stop publicizing unexpected open carry displays at businesses.
Open Carry Texas responded to the NRA's criticism on its Facebook page.
“The NRA has lost its relevance and sided with #guncontrolextremists and their lapdog media,” the group's Facebook post said. “No one in NRA leadership has ever been to an (Open Carry Texas) event, but feels competent to speak out against them.”
A spokesperson for Brinker International Restaurants, which owns Chili's and Maggiano's, told the San Antonio Express-News on Friday that the company “recognize(s) that the open carry of firearms in restaurants creates an uncomfortable atmosphere.”
“So, we kindly ask that guests refrain from openly carrying firearms into our restaurants and we will continue to follow state and local laws on this issue.”
Patrick Lenow, vice president for media relations for Sonic, issued a similar statement.
“While we historically have relied upon local laws to guide how we address the display of guns at drive-ins, recent actions required we carefully reconsider this approach,” he said. “We're asking that customers refrain from bringing guns onto our patios or into our indoor dining areas.”
Grisham said members of his “peaceful organization” often are just going out to eat after rallies with their weapons, not necessarily holding a demonstration in the restaurant.
When asked why members don't leave their guns in their car when they go to eat, Grisham responded: “Why would we go unarmed anywhere we go? The whole point of having a firearm is self-defense; why would we go somewhere” without that.
Jack in the Box, Starbucks and Chipotle previously had asked patrons to keep guns out of their restaurants after similar open carry displays and petitions from advocates of stricter gun laws such as the group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
I personally have no problem with citizens carrying long guns in public. I also believe that Texans should have the right to carry their handguns openly. However, it seems as though these rallies aren't helping out on the PR end. Open Carry isn't a done deal in the legislature and these rallies could cause more harm than good. They could even impact the push for Campus Carry.
Border Crossings Could Cost Taxpayers Billions
WOAI has reported that not only is the flood of minors across the US border dangerous, but that the Texas Border Patrol could be overwhelmed and the situation could cost taxpayers billions.
The surge of illegal immigrant minors rushing over the Rio Grande threatens to overwhelm the Texas Border Patrol, and new figures show the unexpected development will cost U.S. taxpayers more than $2 billion this year, 1200 WOAI news reports.
More than 1,000 unaccompanied immigrant children are arriving in the U.S. each week, according to figures released by the Department of Homeland Security, and some 60,000 are expected to arrive in the U.S. this year. That is up ten times just since 2011.
U.S. Rep Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo), who represents a large portion of the border where the waves of unaccompanied children are arriving, says the situation is out of control.
"The Border Patrol is telling me, we need diapers, we need baby seats, so we can transfer them," he said.
Some of the unaccompanied children are as young as three years old. More than 1,000 have been sent to Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, and others are being sent to other locations far from the border because the flood has left Border Patrol housing facilities packed.
Cuellar says the flood on unaccompanied minors is costing taxpayers $252 per day per child.
"We are playing defense on the one yard line," Cuellar told 1200 WOAI's Michael board.
U.S. Rep John Carter (R-Round Rock) said Obama Administration policies are to blame, saying federal talk about 'amnesty' and 'a path to citizenship' four young illegal immigrants has led to 'thousands of children' being smuggled into the U.S.' The issue is threatening to torpedo any hope of immigration reform of any sort being approved in Congress this year.
Many of the young illegal immigrants are smuggled into the U.S. from Central America. Honduras and Guatemala are among the worst governed countries n the world, with skyrocketing inflation, a brutal crime rate, and gangs running many cities. The rate of violence in Honduras is the worst in the world, with the streets of Honduras more dangerous than Afghanistan or even Syria.
Cuellar says the key to dealing with this flood of young illegal immigrants is to work with Mexico to help that nation shore up its southern border. Mexico, which has a well functioning economy and is emerging as a Latin American economic powerhouse, is now suffering an in migration of illegal immigrants for the first time.
"If we are going to be smart neighbors, I think we need to engage Mexico a lot more than we're doing," he said.
Many of the young illegals report horrific abuse at the hands of immigrant smugglers, including being raped, being physically assaulted, and being force to perform slave labor to 'pay off' the costs of their transportation. Hiring a smuggler to take a 13 year old from Honduras to the United States is said to cost $9,000, or far more than the average Honduran family makes in a year.
Analysts say some illegals are actively 'gaming' the system, being given false hope by smugglers of some sort of blanket amnesty for children if they can make it into the U.S. Some children are told, falsely, that after that 'amnesty' is granted, they will be able to bring their families into the U.S. as well.
One young Honduran told Reuters that she didn't think that entering the United States was illegal.
"Everybody in my home town was doing it," she said.
Other Top Stories:
These and many more topics coming up on today’s edition of The Chad Hasty Show. Tune in mornings 8:30-11am on News/Talk 790 KFYO, streaming online at kfyo.com, and now on your iPhone and Android device with the radioPup App. All guest interviews can be heard online in our podcast section after the show at kfyo.com.