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Texas Law Enforcement Strengthens Screening of Travelers at the Louisiana State Border

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Travelers coming outside of Texas will now have to go through checkpoints on interstates and highways at the eastern part of state during the Wuhan Virus outbreak.

Texas state troopers set up the checkpoints on Sunday, April 5, 2020 and they come less than a week after Texas Governor Greg Abbott ordered that travelers from Louisiana and other parts of the nation to self-quarantine.

“Travelers will be asked to complete the travel form required under (Executive Order) GA-12,” a Texas DPS spokesperson declared in a statement. “It’s important for those entering Texas from Louisiana to be prepared to stop.”

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These screenings are related to the Wuhan Virus pandemic and drivers are advised to exercise caution and stay alert for traffic congestion when driving west into Texas. Vehicles going through roadways crossing into Texas, which include interstates, are all subject to screening.

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Authorities in Louisiana have posted warning signs so drivers about possible traffic congestion that the checkpoints could bring about.

Abbott revealed that the order does not pertain to travel connected to commercial activity, military service, emergency response, health response, or critical infrastructure functions.

Although normal travel is permitted on I-10 in southeast Texas and I-20 to the north, some crossings in east Texas are closed off to non-essential traffic. Law enforcement in Shelby and Sabine counties informed KLTV that a bridge across Toledo Bend Reservoir close to Many, Louisiana, and another bridge close Joaquin, Texas, were only accessible to commercial vehicles and essential travelers.

On top of the ground travel restrictions, Abbott said individuals traveling to Texas by plane from Miami, Atlanta, Detroit, Chicago, all California airports and all Washington state airports are also mandated to undergo a self-quarantine for 14 days.

In a previous announcement, Abbott said that anyone traveling to Texas by plane from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut or New Orleans are required to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Travelers from coming from the aforementioned areas must report their “quarantine location” in a form to DPS. Those who do not comply with the order will face a $1,000 fine or 180 days in jail.

Texas has been relatively sane on handling the Wuhan Virus.

It protected the right to bear arms, unlike some blue states, by declaring gun stores as essential and deregulating certain aspects of commerce to bolster supply chains.

Big League Guns

If Democrats Win, Will Guns Sales Go Through the Roof?

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No matter who wins in 2020, the biggest story of this election cycle has been the record levels of gun sales.  In a piece titled “Guns Sales Break Records With Gun Control Legislation Likely If Democrats Win”, Newsweek highlights the meteoric rise of gun sales in 2020 and how these sales will only go up under a Biden administration.

It’s likely that a Biden win on November 3, 2020 will give life to gun control measure such as universal background checks, assault weapons bans, and national gun buybacks. Scott Reeves of Newsweek noted that “coronavirus pandemic, urban riots and the likelihood of increased regulation if the Democrats win the White House, regain control of the Senate and hold the House” have led to the unprecedented firearms sales.  A Biden win would only accelerate this trend, as people become frightened by the prospect of gun control.

Through September, background checks recorded by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) reached 28.826 million. This total surpassed 2019’s record of 28.369 million, representing a 28 percent increase, according to the FBI report. As of September 30, Illinois was leading the nation in background checks with 5.6 million. Reeves noted that other states such as Kentucky (2.364 million) checks, Texas (1.730 million), Florida (1.386 million), Indiana (1.203 million), California (1.187 million) and Pennsylvania (1.030 million), were also experiencing significant upticks in gun sales.

Since NICS came into effect on November 1998, a total of 361.830 million background checks for all purposes have been completed since the program began in November 1998.

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Zogby Analytics provided some more data showing how enthusiastic Americans are about buying guns:

Zogby Analytics in Utica, New York found that the number of gun owners increased 3.9% between October 2019 and October 2020 to 31.3% of the population. The number of individuals in a household keeping a gun at home, work, vacation cottage or club for personal protection, hunting or target shooting increased 7% to 42.2% in the last year. Membership in the National Rifle Association, a gun rights advocacy group, increased 6% to 17.7% in the last year, Zogby’s polling found.

“While there is fierce debate in Washington D.C. and among voters about what certain types of guns and accessories constitute ‘assault weapons,’ adults in the U.S. are buying and keeping more guns,” Jonathan Zogby declared.

Josh Horwitz, executive director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, an anti-Second Amendment organization, is of the opinion that uncertainty brought about by the Wuhan virus pandemic, riots, and the election are contributing factors to the rise in gun sales.

“Typically, gun sales rise in times of fear,” he said to Newsweek. “We live in a time when there’s a lot of fear, including fear that there might be more gun regulation with a Democratic President and Democratic majorities in Congress. And, there’s been a lot of unrest.”

Americans actions speak louder than their words. Even if Joe Biden does the unthinkable (and the very unlikely) by winning on November 3, his administration will encounter stiff resistance from gun-owning Americans across the political spectrum.

 

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