The Diana DeGette Guide to Gun Safety

By Rep. Diana DeGette

In light of the on-going gun debate, as a service to my constituents I have drafted a quick guide to gun safety. It explains how guns work as I understand it and offers some commonsense tips.


At right, you can see a diagram of a magazine. Magazines are ammunition, they’re bullets. If you ban them in the future, the number of these high capacity magazines is going to decrease dramatically over time because the bullets will have been shot and there won’t be any more available.
This is a diagram of an AR-15. Guns work by using the spring in the magazine to detonate the black powder inside the long tube at the end. The proton pack generates a powerful electromagnetic field that helps propel the bullet down the tube where it then exits and murders someone. Sometimes people murder each other with shotguns, which are similar to the AR-15 but have laser sights and vent holes.


1. Remember to never use your magazine more than twice, as it will become unstable after two firings.

2. Always load your gun by pouring black powder into the barrel, sliding the bullet in, and then using a stick to push it in.


3. Do not attempt to eat your firearm.

4. Always keep your rifle disassembled when not in use to reduce risk from electromagnetic radiation that is generated when firing.

5. Never fire your gun.



Mike Maday to challenge Michael Merrifield in Colorado Springs senate primary

Michael Merrifield's campaign for Senate District 11 in Colorado Springs has attracted its first Democratic primary opponent. Mike Maday, an Obama organizer and social worker, will be running against Merrifield.

Maday was an early booster of the Obama campaign and was a key organizer for it in El Paso County. He now hopes to spin his position into a candidacy for State Senate and can be expected to run as a grassroots insurgent against Merrifield and will likely attempt to out-flank him on the left.

Much like his primary opponent, Maday also takes a dim view of gun owners and dismissed them as "gun nuts" in a particularly bitter screed he submitted to the Colorado Springs Independent titled "Making Gun Nuts Happy":

Let's be thankful we have a city council that sees to it the paranoid mentally ill and fanatic gun nuts feel comfortable and included in our community. Their policy of allowing lethal weapons of all types, unconcealed, concealed and partially hidden, in their own meetings, our public buildings, city parks, etc. ensures these sometimes marginalized groups can feel reassured packing heat everywhere.

Unfortunately some people are bothered by this progressive policy. Of course, whining is being heard from the usual enemies of freedom -- citizens attending City Council meetings regarding zoning changes, teachers wanting to take their students on field trips to city hall, golfers at city courses, parents with their kids at public pools and old people using our parks.

These wimps think that some of our armed citizens may get pissy and actually start firing some of their weapons, maybe blowing away innocent bystanders. This is not New York City. Thank goodness our City Council is brave enough to stand up to these pressure groups even though it might make it difficult for some people to vote for them next election.


Merrifield Anti-Gun Group Jumps Into Self-Defense Debate

As embattled Rep. Joe Salazar's offensive comments implying that college-aged women are not competent enough to be entrusted with the right to defend themselves with a firearm are gaining national attention, Democratic Senate Candidate Michael Merrifield's employer has chimed in to make clear they do not value the right to self-defense either. This was posted to Mayors Against Illegal Guns' Facebook page last night. The timing of the post makes it clear it is in response to the controversy surrounding Salazar:

MAIG seems to be believe that no-one has the right to defend themselves from violent attackers, as opposed to Salazar who is mainly concerned with depriving young women of that right. Whether that is a more or less offensive position, we will leave to the reader.

Despite serving as state coordinator for MAIG and being a candidate for State Senate, Michael Merrifield has attempted to stay hidden throughout the debate over gun control. How much longer can Merrifield remain silent on his disdain for the 2nd Amendment and opposition to self-defense?


Judy Solano running for Colorado State Senate

Former state Rep. Judy Solano (D-Brighton) is preparing to run for Colorado State Senate District 24 in Adams County to replace term-limited Sen. Lois Tochtrop.

Solano, a former teacher, focused on education issues during her tenure in the State House. She is an avowed opponent of student testing and school evaluations. Solano introduced bills nearly every year while in office to erode the ability of parents and state regulators to gauge classroom performance.

In 2009 she played a key role in killing legislation that would have required school districts to place their budgets online, allowing taxpayers and parents to see how their money was being spent. The Public School Financial Transparency Act passed the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support on a vote of 26-8 but was killed by the House Education Committee, on which Solano served, before having the chance to receive a full honest vote in the House. [1]

Solano, a former union member and major beneficiary of union campaign contributions, colluded with the effort to kill the Public School Financial Transparency Act following an intensive lobbying campaign by union-affiliated groups.[2] Despite considerable Democratic support for the bill, Solano and the Democrats on the Education Committee took unusual procedural steps to thwart the Democratic Speaker of the House from having a chance to reintroduce it.

Solano has yet to announce a campaign platform, but her record shows that her priorities would be to reduce transparency in education and to support union interests at the expense of students and parents.


Michael Merrifield on Education

Michael Merrifield, candidate for Colorado Senate District 11, holds strong views on the topic of education reform. In 2007, he was forced to step down as head of the House Education Committee after inflammatory emails he authored were leaked to the press in which he declared that there is a "special place in hell" for opponents of the failing status quo in our education system. [1]

Michael Merrifield's political campaigns have been funded in large part by money from teacher unions. This explains in part his hateful statements towards supporters of charter schools, home schooling, and education reform as well as his long record of obstructing progress in the education system. One Republican Senator even received threats from an unbalanced union supporter provoked by Michael Merrifield's reckless and dangerous rhetoric. [2]

Merrifield has also demonstrated highly questionable positions in regards to classroom material. He has stated that "machines can replace the left-brained functions emphasized in math and science courses" and advocated for less of a focus on math and science and replacing these courses with "music , dance, [and] theater." [3] His priorities in education seem to have little to do with preparing students to find jobs or be successful in life. [4]
[1] Colorado Springs Gazette: Hell 's bells - Inflammatory e-mail sets off alarms, April 3, 2007
[2] 9News: CBI investigates threatening e-mail case, April 10, 2007
[3] Rocky Mountain News: Merrifield raising Hell again, October 26, 2007
[4] Denver Post: Increasing math, science is counterproductive (by Michael Merrifield), October 18, 2007


Michael Merrifield preparing campaign for Colorado State Senate

Magic MikeFormer State Representative and gun control activist Michael Merrifield (D-Manitou Springs) is preparing a campaign to run for State Senate in 2014. Merrifield will be running for Senate District 11, currently occupied by Senate President John Morse (D-Colorado Springs) who will be term-limited.

After leaving the State House, Merrifield ran unsuccessfully for El Paso County Commissioner in 2010 receiving only 39.7% of the vote in a two-way race. In 2011 he ran unsuccessfully for Colorado Springs City Council, being defeated by Lisa Czelatdko. Clearly he is holding out hope that the third time's a charm. He has also been serving as Colorado “state coordinator” for New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's gun control group Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

Mayors Against Illegal Guns has been described as an “extremist organization” by University of Denver Adjunct Professor Dave Kopel [1]. They have come under criticism in the past for advocating policies that would in effect eliminate the right to carry concealed firearms and draconian bans on both types of firearms legally available and those who would be allowed to carry them. Notably, Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach and Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan have rejected membership in the organization.

The extent of Merrifield's duties within the group are unclear, though the “state coordinator” program has come under fire in other states following revelations that the gun control activist's salaries were being payed by taxpayer dollars being funneled to them by Democratic administrations. [2]

Merrifield's career in the State House was punctuated by his resignation from the House Education Committee following inflammatory comments he made stating that supporters of charter schools and private schools are bound for a “special place in hell.” [3]

Merrifield does not yet have any announced opponents for the Democratic nomination or Republican opposition in the general election.

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