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Old 12-04-2008, 06:43 AM   #1
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Default Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Steelers: Half of team is packing heat
http://www.timesonline.com/articles/...1528259883.txt
By Mike Bires
Times Sports Staff

PITTSBURGH — The Steelers are close to clinching a playoff berth. They’re hosting “America’s Team” this weekend. But the hot topic of conversation at team headquarters Wednesday was guns and not football.

With news of Plaxico Burress’ self-inflicted gunshot wound still creating a buzz, many Steelers were grilled by the media about the pros and cons of owning firearms.

Some Steelers admitted to owning guns.

Many of them didn’t want to say if they do.

But in a random survey of Steelers, they suggest that ESPN analyst Keyshawn Johnson was right by saying 50 percent of NFL players own guns.

“That’s a pretty accurate statement,” linebacker James Farrior said. “A lot of guys have guns around here. But you have to realize we’re targets, and we’re easy targets at that. A lot of things have happened to NFL players in the past, so guys got to do what they got to do to protect themselves.”

“Everybody has to be safe and has to protect themselves the best way they know how,” said Farrior, who wouldn’t say whether he owns a gun.

Nose tackle Casey Hampton and linebacker Larry Foote admitted that they own guns.

“Yeah, I think it’s normal,” Hampton said. “I don’t see anything wrong with it. It’s not something that’s illegal to do. If you have a permit, you should be allowed to carry a gun and protect yourself.”

“I do have one at home for protection,” Foote said. “I don’t carry it with me. I do have mine locked up because I have kids. In my opinion, everyone should have one at their home. But make sure your responsible and have it protected.

“I don’t think there’s a wrong or a right if you carry it or not. But if you got one, you have to be responsible and pay attention to it all the time because it’s a dangerous situation. You’re always hearing about kids getting (accidentally) shot, or innocent people getting shot, so everybody has to be careful.”

Cornerback Deshea Townsend disagreed with Johnson’s estimate that 50 percent of all NFL players carry guns.

“That’s crazy,” he said. “Where did he get his information? He didn’t call me.”

Townsend then turned to wide receiver Hines Ward, whose locker stall is next to his.

“Hey, Hines,” Townsend said. “Did Keyshawn call you about guns?”

“Nope,” Ward said.

Ward did not say if he owns a gun, but he definitely said he doesn’t carry a weapon when he’s out and about.

“A lot of guys on this team and in the league do have guns, probably in their own homes for protection,” he said. “But when you carry it out on the street, I don’t think anything good can come out of it. Personally if I’ve got to carry a gun, I don’t need to go out to public. It’s probably a place I shouldn’t be at.

“Playing in Pittsburgh, the way the city and fans are one, I don’t think we have a need for (carrying a gun). I know Pittsburgh is very passionate about its team and its players. I don’t foresee it ever being a problem where a player needs to carry a gun out here in Pittsburgh.”

NFL players finding ways to protect themselves and their families is such an important issue that the league and the players’ association go to great lengths to provide advice.

The NFL has long had a gun policy that prohibits players from bringing guns to any league facility or function.

Each year, the NFL Players Association sends a representative to every NFL team to advise players regarding security issues.

“They aren’t promoting guns,” Foote said. “But when you send that message out (about home invasions), you put a lot of fear in guys. A lot of guys probably feel they need to have guns.”

In fact, the Steelers bring in their head of security each year to talk guns with players. He makes sure that any gun owners or potential gun owners know the rules pertaining to gun ownership.

“They get the point across here,” Foote said. “I’m sure they do everywhere else.”
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:06 AM   #2
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Every American should own a gun, it doesn't mean they're "packing heat" though.

Guns are not evil, mmmmkay?

None of mine ever took me to a strip club then jumped up and shot me in the leg, I swear.


That writer is looking for a headline.
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:16 AM   #3
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Just another reason for the morons in charge to try to take away our right to own weapons. It will be a cold day in HE | | before they come and take my protection away from me the way the home invasions are on the rise. I grew up in a hunting family and know how to use guns responsibly. I NEVER want to have to use it, do not take it out in public but will ABSOLUTELY use it if someone invades my domicile and tries to harm me or my family. Plaxico is a moron and I am glad he is no longer a Steeler.
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:24 AM   #4
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

my dad had his shot guns hanging on the wall in his bedroom. my brothers and i were taught they arent ours so dont touch them. and you know what.. we listened...

there is nothing wrong with having a gun. if you know what you are doing. i own a gun, and my kids know that they are not to touch it.

this is just something that will get the anti-gun people out and want to take away the american publics right to bear arms.
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:27 AM   #5
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

I have a gun in my house. Its locked up because I have kids but its a Beretta 12 guage shotgun.
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:33 AM   #6
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Owning a gun isnt wrong. Not knowing how to handle it and respect it is wrong.

Holstered, safety on and rounds in the mag, not the chamber. From the looks of "The Latin Quarter" club where Plex was, I dont think he needed to be locked and loaded.

http://www.lqny.com/lq/html/index.htm

Get a bodyguard if you are worried about the crowd in the club at the Radisson on Lexington ave. !!
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:01 PM   #7
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Nothing wrong with owning a Gun. It's irresponsibilty that is wrong.

Personally I don't care if they own a gun or not.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:09 PM   #8
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Killer View Post
That writer is looking for a headline.
Agreed. Gun ownership ≠ "packing heat."
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:58 PM   #9
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

I have to disagree with Ward here, “But when you carry it out on the street, I don’t think anything good can come out of it."

There are nearly 2.5 million defensive gun uses per year. In 1994, 79.7% of these the defender used a concealed handgun. In 1994 a quarter of gun defenses uses were AWAY from the home.

If you are legally carrying on the street...good CAN come out of it.
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Old 12-04-2008, 02:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: Steelers: Half of team is packing heat

I don't mind the players owning guns or packing heat when on the street.

As long as the guns are registered and they have the proper permits and concealed carry lisence for the state they are in.

I am an advocate of gun ownership. I do not own a gun myself (yet) but I soon will be owning a shotgun (dual barrel 12 gauge).

Also, I would bet any of our players that are packing heat in public know how to use the SAFTEY feature.
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