24 April, 2009

How to legally own an airgun in T&T

After receiving a number of emails requesting information on how to legally own an airgun in Trinidad and Tobago, I wrote this post.

There are three easy steps to owning an airgun in Trinidad & Tobago:

1. Go to any police station with national ID (PP, DP or electoral ID) and apply for Certificate of Character. Time: 3 weeks. Cost: $50 and your finger prints.

(While this is in process, head down to the Firearms Unit on the 4th Floor, Police Admin on Sackville St, PoS. Get an Air Rifle application form).

2. When you get the CoC back, take it, along with the completed AR app form to Firearms Unit.
Time: 3 weeks. Cost: Free.

3. When you get the permission letter from the Commissioner, contact me. I'll direct you to the appropriate dealer(s), based on your needs, budget and location.
Buy your rifle, pellets and auxilliary equipment and supplies (scope, bag, cleaning kit, etc.)

Remember you are buying a shooting platform, not just a gun. So, take into account the cost of additional equipment, spare parts and maintenance. A good airgunsmith is invaluable, and T&T has a very short list of them. Maintain good OpSec by not bragging about your new acquisition to friends, relatives, neighbours. Go shooting with like-minded, more experienced airgunners, so you can learn.

Keep your gun secured in your home. The single best way to prevent children from playing with guns is to teach them to shoot safely in a relaxed safe environment. Pay a professional, if you’re unsure. Shooting is fun.

Remember, safety first.

23 April, 2009

More emboldened criminals

Photo: Trinidad Guardian

Criminals, masked and geared up in police tactical uniforms strolled into factory at an industrial estate in Diego Martin and fired, reloaded and continued firing on employees, killing three.
The young males killed are aged 15, 19 and 24. The factory is owned by the husband of the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

“No-one took them seriously until they began to open fire.”
“Unopposed, the gunmen continued through the factory, taking out their next target during which the other two men were injured. They re-loaded and continued.”

This blog is not about crime, yet crime, criminals, victims and police ineptitude seem to be on the front burner too often. When are our policymakers and legislators going to stop the partisan bickering and upmanship long enough to make real changes that would positively and sustainably affect the quality of life of our citizens?

If any of those factory employees were legally armed, then those cold-blooded murderers could not have acted with such impunity in executing those young men.

Time to arm the population.

22 April, 2009

Shooting practice, Summit update

Photo: HO/AFP/Getty Images

While thousands were caught up in The Summit swirl, my family went to the nearby hills and had fun target shooting. Drawing and firing while walking and running was also practiced, and caused me to break a sweat. The Goddess surprised me by asking to shoot the rifle. Needless to say, I was elated. We foraged for herbs while there and enjoyed the sunset and light breezes.

Whatever positives comes out of this Summit, it must also be balanced with the disruption to the lives of ordinary people. Snarling traffic jams, no-go areas, closed businesses, closed hospital accident & emergency departments, police officers dressed in new, intimidating riot ‘costumes’ surrounding a few peaceful protestors in downtown Port of Spain and of course unfulfilled promises by the authorities (“… little or no disruption to everyday life…”). Military helicopters flying overhead has become the norm for these three days of disruption.

Asking for permission to protest seems so ridiculous. That permission can easily be denied on spurious grounds. Riot police arrived at a drum protest that was miles away from The Summit and cut the line to the sound system, and ordered everyone present to disperse. This was an open air event at the St James Amphitheatre. An independent senator who was in attendance, remarked that she was amazed that the police would use such a tactic, and could not understand the need for it.

Errol Fabien of Gayelle TV, who carried the Drummit 2 Summit live, advised that the police was not the enemy and were “under instructions”. He implored that even though emotions were running high, that people should remember that the police were their friends and brothers and to avoid heckling them. After those present stood their ground and refused to disperse, a senior police officer ordered the police back to base, which was just next door, at the St James Police Station.

Presidents Barack Obama and Hugo Chavez shook hands after Chavez gave a book to Obama. Commentators read too much into that little gesture: “…a new chapter in US-Venezuela relations”. From a handshake? What if the two had embraced?

Bolivian President Evo Morales ended his five-day hunger strike and attended The Summit. He said he hoped this was the last Summit that Cuba would not be present. He also threatened to not sign the Declaration.

Note: This post is late because my ISP cut me off for five days.

16 April, 2009

5th Summit of the Americas challenges

Photo: 5SOA Secretariat

One of the three major hospitals in Trinidad has closed its Accident & Emergency entrance to the public for the entire duration of The Summit. This is to facilitate “The spouses of the Heads of State attending the Fifth Summit of the Americas (who) are scheduled to board the water taxi ferry at San Fernando, near the hospital's entrance…” What is one to make of this, in light of the stated goals of article three of the draft declaration of the summit, “…to improve health, wellness…”?

Chaos at the designated accreditation office yesterday, as thousands of citizens who live, work or visit in a security controlled zone, visited the old fire station on Hart Street in Port of Spain for their passes. Hundreds were told to visit the Central Police Station for their passes. Many returned to the accreditation office, visibly upset that the police officers knew nothing at CPS, and instructed them to return to the AO. Scores (maybe much more) were denied passes, or simply told the passes were “in process, but not yet completed”. It was obvious that the system was inefficient and Secretariat staff were overwhelmed and unprepared. Some staff were even hostile to members of the public.

08 April, 2009

‘Patriots’ book relaunched today

"Patriots: A Novel Survival in the Coming Collapse" by JW, Rawles goes on sale today. It’s sold at US $10.17 on Amazon.

Rawles is a former US Military Intelligence Officer and author of ‘SurvivalBlog’, which some call “the granddaddy of all survival blogs” There’s also a link to his blog on this page.

02 April, 2009

Vacation, Gun maintenance, Crime

Back from vacation. Details to follow, at another time. Recharged, renewed, re-energised and reloaded. Took time for introspection and re-evaluation. Plans to prepare, strategies to implement, and tactics to act out.

Ticked off a few goals on the 2009 list, but have to move faster to ensure the rest are accomplished before year’s end.


Dave bought a new spring for his rifle and will be replacing the old one tomorrow. He bought it for $150. The same spring is sold for $400 by another dealer. What a disparity! The first dealer will replace for $75, while we are allowed to look on. The latter dealer replaces in private, saying the law prevents us (the gun owners) from viewing the replacement process. Hmmmm.

We desperately need more gunsmiths in T&T. But even more importantly, we need more ethical gunsmiths. Not people who just want to get rich overnight, capitalizing on, and maintaining the ignorance of gun owners.


A Trini living in Venezuela told me today, that they (ordinary citizens) shoot thieves and murderers in Venezuela, with no hassles from the police. In fact, the police are happy for the help. Ordinary citizens are allowed to be legally armed there. Militias are commonplace in many communities there.
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