In just more than six weeks, Emily Miller's powerfully personal book "Emily Gets Her Gun — But Obama Wants to Take Yours" will be published. Her story? The Washington Times senior opinion editor was taken aback at her own challenges while trying to legally purchase a gun in the nation's capital — and found her experiences revealed what could happen on a national level if President Obama gets the gun control policy of his dreams. While she explored the complexities of policy, Second Amendment rights and the threat of Capitol Hill "gun grabbers," Emily also discovered the very real, distinctly American experience of gun ownership.
The book followed, and it is due in stores Sept. 2. For now, though, the cover of Emily's book has been revealed by Regnery Publishing, chosen with the kind help of many Times readers and other fans who voted for the image from eight other choices through an online poll.
"It means a great deal to me that people took the time to vote, and to share their own pictures and stories about gun ownership. While my book reveals a lot about policy, it also provides an accurate portrait of American gun owners and their families, and the long history they bring with them," Emily says.
"'Emily Gets Her Gun' is a stunning indictment of the rampant bias against guns in government and culture. But it's not just about gun owners' feelings," observes Marjory Ross, president and publisher of Regnery Publishing
"As soon as the Second Amendment is gutted by anti-gun extremists, every other fundamental right is a potential next target. Emily Miller knows better than anyone that if you care about freedom, you need to care about guns," she says.
THE VERDICT VIEWERS
Some 11 million people watched as the final verdict in the George Zimmerman trial was revealed on Saturday night at 10 p.m., this according to a final ratings tally of cable news channels from Nielsen released Tuesday. Fox News Channel drew the biggest audience at the moment of truth, with 3.7 million viewers — edging out CNN by 275,000 viewers. HLN pulled in 2.2 million viewers while MSNBC garnered 1.3 million viewers.
"The deliveries marked a radical improvement over the sort of ratings the news nets pull on a typical Saturday night," says Ad Week broadcast analyst Anthony Crupi.
Not everyone was happy with the saturation coverage of the Zimmerman trial and its aftermath, however.
"You can't turn on any news program now without 90 percent of it taken up by this, by the Zimmerman case," Rep. Andy Harris, Maryland Republican, told Washington talk radio station WMAL-AM.
"With all the huge issues going on in the world, with unrest in the Middle East, we're hung up on this one case where this one fellow was in fact found not guilty by a jury. That's the way the American law system works. Get over it," the lawmaker said.
"If we put as much time into restoring our Constitution as we did into the Zimmerman trial, American would be a better place for all of us," notes Emory McClendon, a tea party activist an adviser to Project 21, a grass-roots network for black conservatives.
THE BEAR NEVER SLEEPS
Seems like old times. Russia President Vladimir Putin got out his binoculars Tuesday to witness his nation's biggest military maneuvers since Soviet times, and some observers say, in modern history. On the march across Siberia: 160,000 troops accompanied by 5,000 tanks. And in the Pacific, there are several dozen ships at sea, and 130 combat aircraft overhead. The maneuvers will continues until Saturday.
Russia's Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov has reassured foreign military attaches that the display was "not a flexing of muscles" but simply regular combat training.
Some beg to differ, however. Alexander Khramchikhin, an independent Moscow-based military analyst, insisted "the land part of the exercise is directed at China, while the sea and island part of it is aimed at Japan,'' according to the BBC. Konstantin Sivkov, a retired member of the Russian military's General Staff, told the Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper that the war games were meant to "simulate a response to a hypothetical attack by Japanese and U.S. forces."
Most strategists already know that Hispanic voters lean Democratic; a Gallup poll released Monday finds that up to 59 percent of the much-coveted voting bloc are Democrats.
They are not the most motivated demographic: 48 percent of the eligible Hispanic electorate voted in the 2012 presidential election, compared to 64 percent of whites and 66 percent of blacks.
Democrats should hope that they sustain their support among Hispanics, and that political participation of Hispanics increases, the poll says. But of course.
"The best scenario for Republicans would be a transformative event — such as the nomination of a popular Hispanic Republican candidate for president — that diminishes Hispanics' attachment to the Democratic Party, or, failing that, a continuation of Hispanics' relatively low levels of political activity," Gallup concludes.
Another border fence has come under scrutiny. This one is not between Texas and Mexico, however. It will be 9 feet tall and 9 miles long, and meant to curb some unwanted visitors who have their own ideas. We're talking a multimillion-dollar moose fence, planned to run alongside a major highway in Alaska's most bustling city.
"Moose collisions are unexpected because moose do wild and crazy things when they encounter a road. Some work up a head of steam and run straight across six lanes during rush hour, traffic be damned. Some stop in the median and reverse direction. Some calves bolt across the road because that's what their mother just did," explains Rick Sinnott, a former wildlife biologist and a contributor to the Alaska Dispatch.
People, meanwhile, drive too fast in harsh Alaska weather, and they trust the moose not to bolt into the road, Mr. Sinnott says. He recommends that Anchorage simply lowers the speed limit on the perilous stretch of moose road, or build a pair of cost-effective, strategic moose overpasses at half the price. The road in question is the scene of 40 moose/car collisions each year; citywide, some 80 moose die annually on Anchorage roads. But why should a moose fence interest neighbors to the south?
"The estimated cost is $3 [million] to $5 million — all federal funding designated for highway safety improvements," Mr. Sinnott notes.
POLL DU JOUR
• 88 percent of Americans consider "cybercriminals" to be a threat to their personal privacy.
• 79 percent trust health providers and hospitals to securely handle their personal information.
• 75 percent say consumers have "lost all control" over use of their personal information by businesses.
• 74 percent trust major online retailers, such as Amazon, with their personal information; 68 percent trust banks and brokerage companies.
• 52 percent trust state and local governments, 49 percent trust search portals like Google or Yahoo.
• 48 percent trust the federal government with their personal information.
• 28 percent trust social networking sites like Facebook.
Source: A Harris Poll of 2,091 U.S. adults surveyed June 28 to July 2 and released Tuesday.
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