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ISRA Thursday Bulletin – July 6, 2023

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ISRA Thursday Bulletin – July 6, 2023

July 8, 2023

Executive Director’s Message

Richard Pearson

Last week, on June 29, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals heard an oral argument in Barnett v. Raoul, which was one of the three cases consolidated in the Southern District of Illinois with the ISRA’s Harrel v. Raoul. Together with two cases coming from the Northern District of Illinois, the six cases all presented challenges to Illinois’s recent “assault weapon” and large-capacity magazine ban/registration scheme. Currently, the laws are in force, as an injunction entered in April by the Southern District was stayed by the Seventh Circuit. (The issue of what happens to all the affected firearms purchased while injunctions were in force is still to be determined, perhaps in a separate court proceeding).

During the argument, there was tough questioning of both sides. The government Defendants (State and Cook County) argued – incorrectly – that the impacted firearms do not implicate the Second Amendment, as they claimed they are not used for self-defense, instead labeling them “weapons of war.” The government struggled to find the historical analogs for the restrictions at issue – the “how and why” as required by the Supreme Court’s 2022 Bruen decision – and had to settle for colonial regulations on gunpowder storage that were actually enacted for fire suppression and to protect firefighters.

The Plaintiffs’ attorney from Barnett, who also argued for the NSSF and the Harrel Plaintiffs and others – as well as the other Plaintiffs’ attorneys who argued in some of the other cases – pointed out that the Second Amendment, per the Supreme Court’s rulings in Heller and Bruen, protects firearms in common use for lawful purposes, not just self-defense.  They argued that the semi-automatic rifles that are affected are very distinguishable from machine guns that were for the military and not commonly owned by civilians (though often used by gangsters and criminals), and that semi-automatic rifles have been used for self-defense and other lawful purposes for hundreds of years. However, Justice Easterbrook repeatedly asked whether it matters that something is in common use only because it wasn’t banned, and that something isn’t in common use only because it was banned. He asked whether it would have made a difference if the State had banned the weapons at issue years ago. Counsel noted that there are approximately 24 million AR platform rifles in the United States, and that must qualify as common use, especially as the Supreme Court noted in Caetano that 200,000 stun guns in the U.S. met the “common use” standard.

There is no timetable for a decision, though given the timetable of the statute we expect it will be sooner rather than later. However, whatever decision the Court makes will surely be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.


July is definitely here, and with it the summer wave of senseless shootings by people who shouldn’t own firearms in the first place.  Of course, right on queue mayors of large and out-of-control cities call for more gun control.  The problem of course, is they do not want to see the real problems, let alone deal with them in a meaningful manner.   To deal with them in a meaningful manner would mean they would have to be responsible for their actions.  In this age of everyone being a victim of something or other, that type of action is unpopular.  It is easier to blame an inanimate object than to deal with real problems.

On the other side of the coin, law-abiding gun owners are voting with their feet and their pocketbooks.  The exodus from places like Chicago, Philadelphia, Baltimore, New York, and other blue cities whose populations are out of control, tells one part of the tale. On the other side of the coin, people are arming themselves in ever greater numbers.

In 1991, we reached the peak as far as crime rates go.  Since that time, 26 states have enacted and shall issue concealed carry laws.  Even more recently, 27 states now have constitutional carry.  Since 1991, the crime rate has gone down 42%.  The anti-gun crowd hates it when anyone brings that up.  More guns = less crime.

July is also the month when the national shooting championships go into full swing. These will last through August with some going into September. The national rifle and pistol championships will be held at both Camp Perry, Ohio and Camp Atterbury, Indiana.  The Civilian Marksmanship Programs will be at Camp Perry, Ohio and the NRA Championships will be at Camp Atterbury, Indiana.  The Illinois State Rifle Association will have teams at both championships.

The Grand American World Trap Shooting Championships will be held in Sparta starting in late July and running until the middle of August.  The ISRA will be in our office, which is right on the firing line at Sparta, starting July 27.  Speaking of Sparta, we need more ISRA Volunteers to help with the Youth Camp that starts on July 27. Please call the ISRA office at 815-635-3198 and volunteer for July 28 or July 29, or both days if you have time. You will receive a special ISRA hat and goody bagLunch will be provided each day.

High School youth trapshooting is the fastest growing of the high school sports, with 90,000 students participating.  Of course, the anti-gun Brady Campaign doesn’t like the idea of all the responsible, self-reliant, good students being involved.  They are anti-gun no matter what.  Remember that.



July 6, 1775

Congress sets “forth the causes and necessity of their taking up arms” against British authority.

July 7, 1930

The construction of Hoover Dam begins.  The idea for the dam goes back to 1902. Hoover Dam would create the United States’ largest reservoir, covering 248 square miles.  The reservoir is known as Lake Mead.

The dam was also known as Boulder Dam.  Many people believed President Herbert Hoover was the cause of the Great Depression, so attaching his name to the structure was unpopular.  Hoover did not cause the Great Depression, he just got left holding the bag.  Finally, President Harry Truman approved a congressional resolution officially naming Hoover Dam.

The dam employed 21,000 workers and took 4.3 million cubic yards of concrete to build.  There were 96 people killed working on the dam.  No one is buried in the concrete, contrary to popular belief!  The Hoover Dam is an important American asset.  During WWII the Germans tried to sabotage the dam with bombs but were unsuccessful.

At one time, U.S Highway 93 ran along the top of the dam, but it became too congested and a larger, separate bridge had to be built. The bridge is named after two veterans:  Mike O’Callaghan and Pat Tillman.  The bridge is 900 feet above the Colorado River.

Hoover Dam cost 49 million dollars to build.  Move the highway to the new bridge cost 114 million dollars.

July 8, 1950

General Douglas MacArthur becomes the head of the United Nations command in Korea.

July 9, 1941

British intelligence breaks the German secret code used by the Enigma machine to direct operations on the Eastern Front. The British were wise in not reacting to every situation contained in the secret German transmissions, thereby leading the Germans to think their code was safe.

July 10, 1850

Millard Fillmore becomes president after Zachary Taylor dies suddenly of an intestinal ailment.

July 10, 1995

Diplomatic relations are re-established with Vietnam.


Range Classes & Events

All classes and events are open to the public & all range members unless otherwise noted.

MTW Consulting LLC Basic Pistol Class – Clubhouse & Range 8 – 
July 6, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm 
NRA Basic Pistol Class. Written exam and shooting qualification. Cost: $120. No Refunds. Contact: Michael Wilhite at 815.261.4307 or

ISRA Smallbore & F-Class Rifle League – Range 5 – July 6, 2:00 – 8:00 pm

Weekly summer rifle league that runs seventeen weeks, May through September on Thursday nights. Contact: James P. Miller at 815.268.4411 or

Women’s Team Pistol Practice – Range 1 – July 6, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Team members only. Practice is every Wednesday and Thursday until August 10, 2023. Instructors: Richard Pearson and Mike Vernon. Contact: Richard Pearson at

Guardian Tactics Level 1 & 2 – Range 10 – July 8, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm


Illinois CCL Recertification – Clubhouse & Range 8 – July 9, 8:00 am – Noon

Cost: $120. No Refunds. Shooting qualification. Contact: Michael Wilhite from 815.261.4307 or

ISRA Marksmanship League – Range 11 – July 9, 8:30 am – 12:00 pm

ISRA Marksmanship League is held the second Sunday of every month, March through October, and includes all levels of shooters as a fun competition for a wide range of ability levels. We offer various divisions including rimfire, center fire, revolver, and sub-compact. Youth are welcome. You will need a quality firearm, 50 rounds of ammunition, a minimum of 3 magazines or speed loaders (revolver), holster and magazine pouches are optional. Instructors: Mandi Ehler & Mike Cialdella. Contact 

Vintage Military Rifle League – Range 5 – July 10, 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

This is a 35-round match shot on Monday afternoons. Cost: $10 league fee/$ 5 per match. Instructor: Jeff Marienthal. Contact: Richard Pearson at:

Tuesday Night Irregular Rifles League – Range 3 & Pavilion – 
July 11, 11:30 am – Dusk

NRA High Power rifle competition in a low-pressure environment. Matches are shot weekly from late April to late October, weather permitting. Scores are submitted to the NRA at the end of the season to obtain a national classification. Sign-in at 4:30. Contact: Sam Evans at

Benchrest League – Range 4 – July 12, 8:00 am – Dusk

Shoot centerfire group and score targets at 100 yards; rimfire at 50 yards. No muzzle breaks and semi-auto must have brass catchers, loaded single. Members only. Contact: Mark Lincoln at

F-Class Rifle League – Range 3 – July 12, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

Prone shooting at 300 yards every Wednesday using electronic targets. League runs from 5/3/2023 to 9/27/2023. Cost: $5.00. Instructor: Steve Zagrodnik. Contact: Tom Jurgens at 815.573.3041 or

Women’s Team Pistol Practice – Range 1 – July 12, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Team members only. Practice is every Wednesday and Thursday until August 10, 2023. Instructors: Richard Pearson and Mike Vernon. Contact: Richard Pearson at

Paper Steel League – Range 11 – July 12, 5:00 pm – Dusk

3 Gun and steel challenge practice on Wednesday afternoons. Members only. Contact: Jeff Davis at 708.476.3257 or

ISRA Smallbore & F-Class Rifle League – Range 5 – July 13, 2:00 pm – Dusk

Weekly summer rifle league that runs seventeen weeks, May through September on Thursday nights. Contact: James P. Miller from 815.268.4411 or

Women’s Team Pistol Practice – Range 1 – July 13, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Team members only. Practice is every Wednesday and Thursday until August 10, 2023. Instructors: Richard Pearson and Mike Vernon. Contact: Richard Pearson from

Sig Sauer Academy Armorer’s Course P365 – postponed

MTW Consulting LLC CCL Training – Range 8 – July 15, 8:00 am – 4:00 am

MTW Consulting LLC Illinois CCL (NRA CCW curriculum) training. Contact Michael Wilhite at 815.261.4307 or

Defensive Shooting Course – Range 11 – July 15, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Drawing from the holster, shooting on the move, and shooting behind cover. Contact: Billy Cowart at 248.219.9791 or

Sig Sauer Academy Armorer’s Course P320 – postponed

Springfield Armory Pistol Match 2023 – Range 11 – July 16, 8:30 am – Noon

Limited to XD, XDM, 1911, and compact models. Contact: Tony Jacobazzi at 630.918.1631 or mailto:

Illinois CCL Qualification – Range 9 – July 16, 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm 


The ISRA Range offers great classes and leagues for shooting enthusiasts!

Interested in joining a league?
Just show up 15 – 30 minutes early.

Range memberships are available.

A day at the ISRA Range is always a great day!

Thank you for being a member!

If you are not an ISRA member,  join today!



Upcoming Meetings:

Upcoming Range Events:


Upcoming Gun Shows

While the gun show information shown in this email is believed to be accurate – sometimes changes occur. This is provided for informational purposes only.

August 4 – 5 Prairie State Longrifle Show, Super Stay Inn, Princeton

August 12 – 13 Bloomington Gun & Knife Show, Interstate Center, Bloomington

August 26 – 27 Belleville Gun & Knife Show, Belle-Clair Fairgrounds, Belleville

September 16-17 Kankakee Gun & Sportsman’s Show, Kankakee County Fairgrounds

September 17 McHenry County Gun Show, McHenry County Fairgrounds, Woodstock

September 23 National Civil War and Collector Arms Show, DuPage County Fairgrounds, Wheaton

September 23 Chillicothe Sportsmen’s Club Gun & Knife Show, Chillicothe Sportsmen’s Club House, Chillicothe

September 30 – October 1 Central Illinois Gun Collectors Association Sangamon County Fairgrounds, New Berlin

October 8 Kane County Sportsman’s Show, Kane County Fairgrounds, St. Charles 

October 22 McHenry County Gun Show, McHenry County Fairgrounds, Woodstock

October 28 – 29 Sauk Trail Gun Show, Bureau County Fairgrounds, Princeton


“Ninety-eight percent of the people in this country are decent, hardworking, honest Americans. It’s the other lousy two percent that get all the publicity. But then, we elected them.”

Lily Tomlin

“The people who work against your gun rights are basically saying to you, “The right of the criminal to rip you off, rape and kill you shall not be infringed.” And they wonder why we’re a bit testy”

Editor of KABA LIBERTY ADVOCATE, Friday, July 30, 2001

“I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand.”


“You may find me one day dead in a ditch somewhere. But by God, you’ll find me in a pile of brass.”

Tpr. M. Padgett

“Using inner city kids as your proof that guns and kids don’t mix, is like using an alcoholic to prove all people will abuse alcohol.”

Lori Broadhead

“How dare politicians continue to pass insane laws forcing good, law-abiding people to be defenseless and helpless.”

Ted Nugent

The said Constitution [shall] never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe or to prevent the people of the United States from keeping their own arms.”

Samuel Adams, Massachusetts' U.S. Constitution Ratification Convention, 1788

“One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation.”

Thomas B. Reed (1886)

“No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”

Thomas Jefferson, Proposed Virginia Constitution (1776)

“Foolish liberals who are trying to read the Second Amendment out of the Constitution are courting disaster by encouraging others to use the same means to eliminate portions of the constitution THEY don’t like.”

Alan Dershowitz

“Every 13 seconds in America someone uses a gun to stop a crime.”

Sen. Larry Craig

“The AK-47 is not a device of aggression … I devised this machine-gun for the security of my country,”

Mikhail Kalashnikov, April 1997