Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

By Illinois standards, this is kind of a big deal

In most parts of the country, formal endorsement on the part of the state Republican Party of the right to carry a defensive firearm would hardly be cause for celebration--it's something one would expect. This is Illinois, though, where the Republican Party sends statist, gun banning dolts like Mark Kirk to Washington. In other words, standards are quite a lot lower here. That's why we're forced to count as progress even as backhanded an endorsement of self-defense (more on that in a minute) as this (pdf file).

Specifically, we endorse:

Continued use of the Firearm Owners Identification system and use of criminal and mental background checks by licensed firearms dealers;

State pre-emption of local ordinances which impede the right of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms (see the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution);

We strongly endorse and support the 2nd Amendment to the Bill of Rights to the U. S. Constitution. We believe every citizen (American) has the right to keep and bear arms. No state city or local law should be allowed to infringe upon this right;

Enactment of “Concealed Carry” legislation offering permits to properly trained, law-abiding citizens to bear concealed weapons for personal protection
It starts off pretty badly, obviously, with an endorsement of the continuation of the egregious FOID program. That was almost enough to make me stop reading, right from the beginning.

It gets better, though. Illinois is one of the few states without state preemption of firearms laws, and as a result, places like Chicago (and to a lesser extent, all of Cook County) are subject to gun laws even more draconian than those imposed on the rest of the state. It's therefore encouraging to see the state GOP finally going on record as being committed to changing that.

The claim to "strongly endorse and support the 2nd Amendment . . . " is hard to take very seriously, considering the first point of endorsement, but this being Illinois, I doubt they even see the paradox.

Then, the (sort of) big one--concealed carry. Not all that long ago, bringing concealed carry to Illinois was what I lived and breathed for. Over time, I have come to realize that getting the government to license a fundamental, human right is hardly the enormous victory I once thought it would be. Still, as I keep saying, this is Illinois, where merely slowing down the pace of new infringements is something of a victory.

The Illinois GOP is in tatters, with Democratic majorities in both legislative houses and in the governor's mansion (if he actually lived there, but that's another story), so their endorsement isn't exactly likely to carry the day, but perhaps this means that Republicans--Illinois Republicans--are finally starting to take gun rights seriously. This could be good for both gun rights and the Republican Party.


Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you on the Concealed Carry Laws, for reasons that might not have occured to most of the proponents: it's unconstitutional.

Believe it or not, per the decision in US vs Emerson, it is legal to carry Open in the jurisdiction of the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. They claimed to demure in "going further," but, effectively declared the 2A to be an individual Right that cannot be infringed, except in one narrowly defined exception "...that may not pass Constitutional muster..."

Think about that...the most controversial issue at that time were Concealed Carry Laws. So why would they not be Constitutional? They create a Quasi-Noble Title: "Concealed Carry Permit Holder," or, "Concealed Handgun License Holder."

For those who might not know, a "Title" is defined as a name that someone is allowed to possess and use, that has "privileges and immunities" attached that are denied to all other Law Abiding Citizens (note Capital 'C'). And, a Title 'must' be paid for in some manner, with "Coin of the Realm," or, in service to the State or Crown (usually involves the shedding of Blood, theirs or others, or, acts that could be deemed "Tyrannous").

In our case, it's a little simpler: It's a "Rent a Privilege" scheme. When something 'must' be granted, it is no longer a Right, but, a Privilege. It also comes with an implied or actual "Immunity from prosecution" (except in extreme or 'spun' circumstances).

That's why I took and passed the course to get a Texas CHL, then choked when it came to "Renting a Privilege" for four years.