- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 9, 2003

Easy prey

When it comes to hunting within the city of Washington, people — not ducks — are the moving targets.

A victim’s chances of survival aren’t helped by the fact that guns are banned in Washington, which means criminals get to pull all the triggers. But perhaps not for long. Certain members of Congress want to even the odds of survival.

Rep. Mark Souder, Indiana Republican, along with 22 Democrats and 40 Republicans as co-sponsors, has introduced legislation to guarantee residents of Washington their Second Amendment right to bear firearms in their homes and businesses.

The legislation seeks to lift Washington’s gun ban — one of the strictest in America — which forbids law-abiding citizens from possessing handguns. (Even rifles are allowed only on an extremely limited basis.)

“The District of Columbia is a failed laboratory experiment for gun control,” Mr. Souder says. “It has one of the most comprehensive bans on firearms in the nation, and it also has one of the highest violent-crime rates in the nation.

“In fact, in 2002 it had the highest per-capita crime rate of any city in the nation. This is not a coincidence. The simple fact is, when law-abiding citizens are forbidden by their government from protecting themselves, they become easy prey for those to whom a gun ban is just one more law to break.”

Rare sighting

That was D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams jogging past the Jefferson Memorial and up 14th Street on a beautiful Wednesday evening, followed inconspicuously by a lone bodyguard riding a bicycle.

Trying to figure out why Mr. Williams appeared so different, we realized it had nothing to do with his jogging outfit. Rather, it was one of the few times we’ve seen him without a bow tie around his neck.

June Cleaver

Invitations have gone out for an Oct. 21 reception for Scripps Howard reporter Joan A. Lowy’s new book, “Pat Schroeder: A Woman of the House.”

Not a woman of the typical house, but a woman of the House of Representatives, where the Colorado Democrat felt she was spending too much and called it quits after 12 terms.

“The problem is, no one has time to be a family anymore because they are working so hard,” the congresswoman said on the House floor in 1996. “I graduated from high school in 1958. I want to read to you what came from my high school book on home economics and how I should be a good wife.

“No. 1, it said: ‘When your husband comes home, have dinner ready. Plan ahead the night before a delicious meal. Men like to be fed right as they come through the door, and they will feel very comforted if they know that they can always count on that.’

“No. 2: ‘Prepare yourself at least 15 minutes before your husband is coming home. Be sure you are refreshed. Touch up your makeup, put a ribbon in your hair … minimize all noise. Turn off all machines in the house and be there at the door to greet him and welcome him home from the very, very difficult day he has had at work. Do not greet him with problems. Do not complain if he is late for dinner. Listen to him. Let him talk first. Make the evening his.’

“Now, Mr. Speaker, you show me an American home where you can practice this today, and I am going to move there,” Mrs. Schroeder said. “My husband and I have never been able to do this. He has wanted that kind of wife; I have wanted to be that kind of wife.”

Kelly’s Heroes

Our item on retired and active military members being asked by USAA Magazine to rank their all-time favorite military movies (the most popular, in order, were “Twelve O’Clock High,” The Bridge on the River Kwai,” “The Longest Day,” “Patton,” “The Deer Hunter,” “Saving Private Ryan” and “We Were Soldiers”) generated considerable response from within the ranks.

“I saw that article … and wondered how they came up with those movies. Then I saw the writer was a retired Air Force officer. Well, no wonder,” writes retired Army officer Bob Thomas of Guthrie, Okla.

“Soldiers would choose a different set of favorite war movies, as would sailors and Marines. I can’t believe no one mentioned ‘Black Hawk Down,’ ‘Flight of the Intruder,’ ‘Gettysburg,’ ‘Memphis Belle,’ or ‘Full Metal Jacket.’ ”

John McCaslin, a nationally syndicated columnist, can be reached at 202/636-3284 or [email protected].

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