Pistol Packing President


Alan Fud
June 10, 2004, 08:24 PM
http://www.theiowachannel.com/politics/3392082/detail.html ... Reagan Was Hero To Iowa Woman
Nursing Student Rescued From Mugger By Reagan

POSTED: 5:54 pm CDT June 7, 2004

Former President Ronald Reagan is known as the "Great Communicator," but one Iowa woman will always know him as her hero.

Melba King was a 22-year-old nursing student in Des Moines in 1933. She was walking home one autumn night when a mugger came up behind her with a gun and demanded her money.

At that moment, Ronald Reagan -- who was a Des Moines radio sportscaster at the time -- came to her rescue. Reagan pointed a .45-caliber revolver at the robber from the window of his second-floor rented room.

"And he said, 'Leave her alone or I'll shoot you right between the shoulders,'" King told KCCI.

Reagan scared the man off and calmed King's nerves. Then, the future president said he would walk King home.

King didn't see Reagan again until 1984, when Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad heard her story and invited her to an Iowa caucus campaign event.

After King and Reagan hugged on stage, Reagan laughed, and said to the crowd, "This is the first time I've had a chance to tell you the gun was empty. I didn't have any cartridges. If he hadn't run when I told him to, I was going to have to throw it at him."

King's rescue became a national news story. "The phone rang constantly," King said.

All the media attention caused Reagan and King to stay in touch. The two families exchanged cards on birthdays, holidays, and during times of sickness and grief.

The Reagans helped King when she lost her husband Harold in 1987, and now she will send Nancy Reagan a sympathy note.

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June 10, 2004, 08:33 PM

Communist Threat

Though Reagan was not political in his early Hollywood days, the growing communist influence in the movie industry captured his interest. During a speech to a group in Los Angeles, he spoke of the growing threat of fascism. After the speech, a pastor approached him, saying that communism was an equal danger and needed to be addressed.

Reagan did address the issue, and his criticisms of communism made him many enemies.

"To Reagan few passages of his life had been as grueling as those years when he faced physical intimidation, including a threat that he would be splashed with acid, ruining the big screen face he depended upon for income," the author recalled. "He began packing a .32 Smith and Wesson pistol, holstering the gun on every morning for months and wearing it until he stepped into bed at night."

The pastor's comment sparked a passion for exposing communism that would dominate Reagan for the rest of his political life and would lead to his own crusade to bring down the Soviet Union.
to bad he signed in the 86 ban. besides that still was a great president.

Don Gwinn
June 10, 2004, 08:50 PM
But did he think he was signing a ban or the FOPA? I think you can at least make an argument that he looked at what could be gotten that year and decided it was worth it to sign. Do you honestly think he did it with the intent of screwing gun owners? I doubt it.

Foreign Devil
June 10, 2004, 09:27 PM
If I'm not mistaken: he asked the NRA if they wanted him to sign the bill or not. The NRA reasoned that the bill did more good than harm by repealing some of the more onerous provisions of the 68 GCA (many people agree) and gave their approval.

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