Ending months of speculation, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear arguments about the Constitutional permissibility of Chicago's handgun ban. Presumably, to come to a ruling on that, SCOTUS will have to finally rule once and for all on whether or not the Second Amendment is incorporated under the Fourteenth Amendment--whether, in other words, the Second Amendment is binding on not only the federal government, but on state and local governments, as well. [More]That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope ya' like.
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Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
As a gun rights advocate, I argue strenuously against registration, knowing full well that "registration leads to confiscation" is far more than a bumper sticker slogan--it is a fact that we have seen played out time and again (in California, for example).That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.
Unfortunately, gun registration in fact, if not in name, is already here, and has been since passage of the Gun Control Act of 1968. Since then, gun shops must retain purchase records for every gun they have ever sold, and keep those records--forever. The BATFE can demand any sales record at any time. If the shop ever goes out of business (and the BATFE is not above trying to bully even law-abiding shop owners out of business), all that shops sales records go to the BATFE for "safekeeping."
Wintemute, by bringing attention to one method for people to arm themselves with no government record of the fact, has done freedom a favor, albeit while intending the exact opposite. [More]
Monday, September 28, 2009
New Castle County, Delaware is mulling over proposed legislation that would put it in line with state law, in protecting gun owners from the kind of confiscations inflicted on New Orleans residents in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, according to an article titled "Bill would preserve gun rights in emergencies."
Farley, who also owns First State Firearms, said language that gives the county executive the right to place "limitations upon the carrying or stockpiling of firearms, weapons or ammunition" is out of step with state and federal statutes.I don't remember anything about a Katrina-aftermath-era Louisiana law prohibiting the accumulation of guns (although I suppose there might have been one), but who can forget chilling scenes like this?
"Delaware state law prevents other municipalities from passing patchwork gun laws," Farley said.
"The concern is that what happened during [Hurricane] Katrina in New Orleans, where Louisiana passed a law that prohibited the accumulation of guns, doesn't happen here," Tansey said.
In the aftermath of the deadly storm, the City of New Orleans confiscated more than 500 legally-owned guns in what officials said was an effort to maintain order in the decimated city. The move sparked outrage among gun owners, an NRA law suit and prompted several states -- including Delaware -- to outlaw such seizures going forward.
Delaware, although home to James and Sarah Brady, passed a law against such seizures, in the wake of the backlash against New Orleans Mayor Nagin's and Police Superintendent Riley's assault on the Bill of Rights, but New Castle County is apparently a bit slow to catch up.
Unfortunately, I don't think some County officials quite "get it."
According to Dave Carpenter Jr., who heads the county's Office of Emergency Management, state law does clearly prohibit such a move. And while he acknowledged his office was working to update language in the county code to more accurately reflect the state's, he had some concerns about Tansey's proposal.For one thing, this isn't about people "think[ing] that they have a little more freedom during those times than at other times"--people can "stockpile" guns at any time, just as they are free to stockpile other life-saving items, like long shelf-life foods, first-aid kits, drinking water, etc.
"My fear is this might open the door for people to think they have a little more freedom during those times than at other times," he said.
Carpenter said his agency would never go door-to-door and ask people to turn in their guns -- they'd be stopped by county attorneys even if they tried -- but said law enforcement officials do have a responsibility to make sure people aren't stockpiling.
"There's nothing that restricts you from keeping your current assets, but I think there would be an effort to try to prevent people from accumulating weapons or building up an arsenal," he said.
For another, Dave, just how do you intend to stop them?
Much more likely, and more terrifying, is the possibility of explosives being smuggled onto the train, to be remotely detonated, as happened in Madrid, Spain in 2004; or simply triggered by suicidal fanatics eager for martyrdom and the 72 virgins dating service. Recent events--in Denver/New York, Springfield (IL), and Dallas--would seem to indicate that explosives are still the preferred weapon of choice for terrorists. As I mentioned last week, Mayor Bloomberg himself has noted that security on Amtrak is not exactly air-tight:That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Please give it a look.Bloomberg said that the Amtrak security was already pretty lax, and if the new bill passes, there wouldn’t be anything keeping someone from carrying multiple assault weapons in their baggage."Pretty lax" security, it seems to me, is pretty unlikely to prevent explosives from being smuggled on-board. Therefore, it would seem to me that improving the screening of luggage would be a very prudent measure. [More]
Friday, September 25, 2009
Oleg Volk photo
At long last, I am going to make an effort to get back to posting more than just blurbs for my St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner columns.
Today's topic was inspired by this article about a 10-year-old boy who attempted to shoplift an "assault weapon" kit from a gun store.
Iowa City police say a 10-year-old boy who tried to steal a kit that makes a rifle look like an assault rifle may have thought he was stealing an actual gun.The focus of the article, clearly, is on the young age of the aspiring master criminal, and the fact that he supposedly believed he was stealing an entire gun, rather than parts to modify one.
[ . . . ]
The conversion kit includes a bayonet but no gun. Buyers use the kits to make ordinary rifles look like assault weapons.
My focus, though, is elsewhere. I cannot help but note that the article says--twice--that the kit was designed to make a rifle look like an "assault weapon" (a term the article incorrectly uses interchangeably with assault rifle).
That, of course, is simply another piece of proof (as if one were needed) of journalistic ignorance about firearms. So-called "assault weapons" are defined by cosmetic features, rather than mechanical ones. I don't know the details of the kit, beyond the fact that it included a bayonet, but it presumably also included a folding stock with a pistol grip, and/or a flash-hider, etc. A semi-automatic, detachable magazine-fed rifle equipped with two or more of those things would not merely look like a so-called "assault weapon," it would become what was once defined as one.
Coming out and saying that, though, would perhaps make it too obvious that what distinguishes a politically correct rifle from an "assault weapon" is merely a few simple accessories, thus making bans too obviously ridiculous.
Perhaps the article's wording was not based on ignorance after all, and was instead a deliberate distortion.
And finally to the title of today's column, and the photograph. If we are to sic the government on the "voices of hate," what are we to do when those voices are commissioned by the government?Today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner column (better late than never). Please give it a look.A blogger who once kept tabs on extremist groups as a paid informant for the FBI was ordered held without bail today while awaiting trial on charges that he threatened the lives of three federal judges.The blogger in question is rabidly anti-semitic Harold "Hal" Turner, who is charged with threatening the lives of three federal judges, after writing on his blog that they "deserved to be killed" for denying incorporation of the Second Amendment in a case in Illinois. The FBI acknowledges that they have, in the past, employed him as a paid informant and agent provocateur. Although that relationship was apparently not in effect at the time of his articulating his wish for the death of the federal judges, that was exactly the kind of thing he was expected to say when on the FBI payroll.
What I cannot help but wonder is what those clamoring for "justice" against the "hate speakers" would suggest we do when the "hate speech" came at the government's behest. [More]
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
I knew that all this rather . . . peculiar attention in one day could not be a coincidence, and with a bit of looking around, confirmed my suspicion that my "Hate group" article had been linked to by some nutball "white power" website (to which I will not provide a link).That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope ya' like.
Apparently, back in July, I failed to make something clear, and for that I sincerely apologize. Today, let me correct that lapse. Bigots, I am not on your side. I flatter myself with the notion that I stand (well, sit, in my case) with Jews for the Preservation of Firearm Ownership, with Pastor Kenn Blanchard, with the Pink Pistols. My heroes include the Deacons for Defense and Justice, and if the opportunity ever presented itself, I would joyfully perform messy bodily functions on the grave of William Luther Pierce. You, bigots, are at least as good a reason as the potential of an out of control government for the good citizens of this nation to arm and train themselves. [More]
I hate Illinois Nazis.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Perhaps Bloomberg's (and U.S. Representative "What's a barrel shroud" McCarthy's, and NYC Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly's) objection to guns locked up on trains is a New York thing--a New York Times editorial is positively incandescent with indignation, with the hysterical rhetoric starting before one gets past the title: "The Senate Brandishes a Gun at Amtrak." The quality of the commentary goes, amazingly, downhill from there.That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope you find it worth your time.
The Brady Campaign denies being anti-gun, and to their (small amount of) credit, are refraining from joining in the howls of outrage from those who do not even bother to deny their hatred of privately owned firearms. Perhaps they would like to burnish their "not anti-gun" credentials, with an effort to convince Mayor Bloomberg and friends that terrorists have nothing to gain from this modest measure. I won't hold my breath. [More]
Friday, September 18, 2009
Before writing this column, I had considered borrowing John Lott's "More Guns, Less Crime" title, but actually, my point is somewhat different from his. I am not trying to claim that crime is reduced by more widespread firearm ownership. I acknowledge the possibility, and the obvious fact that Lott has done a far more thorough and rigorous study of the numbers than I ever will, but I personally have some doubts that violent crime numbers bear much relation at all to firearm ownership numbers. There can be little doubt that violent crime has trended steadily down for the last couple decades, while the number of privately owned firearms has increased by millions per year over the same time period--if there is any such relationship, it is clearly in the direction argued by Lott.That's today's St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner. Hope you find it worth a read.
In the end, though, I argue that the numbers are beside the point--that point being that self-defense is a human right. Inevitably, some will use the most effective self-defense tools (firearms) for aggression, rather than self-defense. I claim that their abuse of their rights has zero bearing on whether or not anyone else's rights should be recognized. [More]
Monday, September 14, 2009
The rape of a handicapped man is, of course, just one example of the strong preying on the weak: an adult abusing a child, a large, strong man assaulting a smaller, generally physically weaker woman, and a gang attacking an individual are a few others. I chose to write about this today because of the incident's personal relevance to my situation.After all this time, I've finally posted another St. Louis Gun Rights Examiner column. Sorry for the long silence--been having some issues that have made use of the computer nearly impossible. Those issues have not entirely resolved themselves, and I don't know how much posting I'll be doing in the near future (today's effort was pretty taxing), but I'm chomping at the bit to get back in the swing of things.
The above story is short on details, but one assumption I feel rather safe in making is that the victim was unarmed--even the sickest of perverts tend to prioritize their deviant sexual pleasure (and the joy of imposing their dominance over others) rather a long way below their personal survival. [More]