Archive for the 'Second Amendment' Category



Mental Health Examinations As A Precondition For Gun Ownership

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago

Rekha Basu:

Of course if you have a mental condition you never sought treatment for, there’s no way to know about it without doing an evaluation, which isn’t required. And though lying on the form is a Class-D felony, by the time the lie is discovered, it could be too late.

Well, everyone has a mental condition.  It’s whatever condition you happen to be in mentally.  What the writer is really suggesting is that people suffering from mental illness should not be qualified to own firearms.

But since we’ve demonstrated that mental illness has nothing to do with propensity to violence, the writer is a prejudiced bigot.  Were you raised that way Rekha, or was this just part of earning your progressive creds so that the other staff writers respect you?  Are your fellow writers as bigoted as you are?

Oh, and I see where you’re going with this.  Anyone who believes in the second amendment and a God-given right to bear arms is to be found as “mentally ill” by doctors who have been trained in Freud and Derrida.  Nice try.  No.  Your turn.

When Knives Are Illegal

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago

The Truth about Knives posts a reader’s story about his son and a knife.  It’s a sad tale indeed.

So imagine that, my oldest Son developed an interest in knives…  In the fall of 2012, at a Gun and Knife show, a particular knife caught my Son’s eye.  He had the money to buy it but the vendor refused to sell it to my Son because he wasn’t 18.  I gladly assumed responsibility for the sale and exchanged of My Son’s hard earned money for the knife he wanted.  He was now the proud owner of a fancy new “spring assisted” knife.  We both marveled at how quickly it opened.  I gave him the same advice my Dad had given me when I got a new knife.  I said intently, “be sure to be careful with that knife”.  The knife quickly became my Son’s favorite knife.  The next spring as the weather warmed and even though Christmas had provided a few new ones, it was still my Son’s favorite knife.  So He took it with him almost everywhere he went.

That is, until April 13, 2013.

It was a perfect night at the end of a beautiful Spring Saturday in April.  It was the kind of day you dream of all Winter long in Michigan.  That night my oldest Son was out riding his bike around the neighborhood.  I wasn’t exactly sure where he was, but I wasn’t exactly worried either as we live in a fairly quiet small town.  Besides, my Son had never been in trouble and I wasn’t worried as he’s a good kid and not the kind to go looking for it…  But when my ex-wife knocked at my door out of the blue that night and said we needed to talk about our oldest, my world changed completely.  I rounded the corner out my front door and onto my porch and saw my Son sitting in the front seat of my Ex’s van.  He was as white as a ghost and shaking.  His eyes were red and full of tears.  I’d never seen his face so full of fear.  The two of them explained to me the best they could through the emotions and tears, that My Son had been riding his bike just a few blocks away from My House when a Police officer stopped him and charged him with carrying an illegal knife!!!  The Police report later confirmed My Son was doing nothing wrong when he was stopped and that he behaved very respectfully to and with the Officer that night.  The Officer had simply seen a clip on My Son’s back pocket and stopped him to see what it was.  My Son while still shaking told me “Dad I wasn’t trying to break the Law”, “I thought my knife was legal.”  And then that night My Son would say the words that would haunt me to this day!!  “If I can’t carry this knife without getting into trouble, what knife can I carry?”  “What knife can I carry…?”

It was a few weeks later or so before the first court date so my Ex-wife and I set up an appointment with her Lawyer to meet to talk about what happened.  The Lawyer explained the legal process and what to expect next… and I asked about MI knife laws and if the knife My Son had was or was not legal according to the Law.  The Lawyer responded that “it didn’t matter what the Law said about his knife”.  Simply put, my Son was being charged by the Local Police and the best option, since he had never been in trouble before, was to hope the court would go easy on him.  He said since it’s his first offence if he plead guilty he would likely just have to do some community service hours and pay a fine.  But I persisted!  What about the knife and the Law!?!?!?  What does the Law say!?!?  But the Lawyer persisted as well and said that the Law did NOT matter!  You see the night of April 13th when this first happened I started to do some ‘Google’ searching to try to understand the law and I was getting confused.  But I did know the MI State Police web site said knives over 3 inches were NOT illegal, unless the person had unlawful intent.  So I called the Officer that night to try to understand the charges.  The Local Police Officer who charged my Son told me on the phone that night that any knife over 3 inches was illegal in Michigan…  And when I questioned him about why the State Police website said otherwise, he told me to get a Lawyer if I needed help understanding the law because I didn’t know what I was talking about.  I tried to explain to him that I believed HE didn’t understand the Law correct…  The call ended and I knew we were in for an uphill fight.  The Visit with my Ex’s Lawyer was no different.   My Son and I talked and neither he nor I wanted him to plead guilty to something he didn’t do wrong.

The months following would prove to be some of the most trying times and frustrating experiences I have ever had.  I called Lawyer after Lawyer and heard the same thing, the Law does not matter.  But I still kept trying to understand it better, and I ended up finding AKTI and KnifeRights.org.  I did everything I could to learn everything I could about knife laws and regulations.  But unfortunately where we lived the Laws did not seem to matter, facts did not seem to matter.  I’d lose more sleep and eventually succumb to panic attacks and bouts of rage trying to prove my Son’s innocence and understand the charges.  Because the truth was traded for opinions and facts were perverted to try to make a innocent child look guilty.  We heard excuse after excuse from the Prosecutor as to why My Son’s knife was not legal.  My Son’s knife was even recorded as being 2 inches longer than it actually was.  At a time when the police department who charged him were teaching and enforcing the law based on the belief that length determined the legality of a knife. Which does NOT agree with the Law.  But yet they recorded his knife longer than it actually was, when they believed and were teaching kids that being longer than 3 inches made it not legal.    The Sergeant had even signed and verified it into evidence at the incorrect overstated length.  The first meeting at the Prosecutor’s Office I questioned the charges and explained I did not believe My Son did anything wrong.  The person we were dealing with looked at the Police report and went straight to the the length and said, yes it’s over 3 inches it’s illegal!  When I handed them a copy of the Michigan State Police website that contradicted what they were saying about blade length they became irate and turned bright red!  It was then we found out the 3 3/4 inch long knife blade of my Son’s knife had been recorded as 5 3/4 inches long!  That simply wasn’t right!  So I questioned the length in the Police report and the Prosecutor contacted the Police department to verify the length.  But I was told they were having trouble contacting them because the Prosecutor could only talk with the charging officer about the case and he worked nights…  Eventually contact was apparently made because according to my lawyer the charging Officer stated it was the correct length.  How can that be!  So I contacted the Chief of Police directly, he was able to review the knife in evidence and confirm the recorded length was not correct!  And stated there was no record of anyone attempting to verify its length from the Prosecutor’s Office.  Then he told me the Officer was not able to find a ruler anywhere in the Station on April 13th and so he had to print one off of the internet to measure my Son’s knife, that’s why the report was not accurate.

Visit TTAK for the rest of the story.  I don’t take as improbable that either (a) the ruler he printed from the internet was to the wrong scale, or (b) he didn’t know the difference between inches and centimeters.

This has as one of its root causes the fact that law enforcement agencies around the country hire in the main improperly or undereducated people to do the job.  This isn’t mean to be insulting – rather, it’s meant as a clinical assessment.

I would advocate that candidates for LEO have taken and passed at least course work in physics and calculus.  College degrees in criminal justice are mainly worthless.

Furthermore, I don’t mean to leave out lawyers from what may seem like a scathing rebuke.  They can be some of the most undereducated people on earth.  Courses in law don’t prepare you for anything except wading your way through the corrupt legal system in America.  How many lawyers do you know that can work on machinery, or maintain their HVAC or automobile, or wire a home, or do the simple geometry and trigonometry necessary to build a structure?

As for knives, every man carries a knife all of the time.  I’ve used knives for everything from opening packages, to cutting plastic bags full of hex-head screws for those infernal apparatus my wife wants me to construct, to cutting tape, to cutting paracord or other cordage or ropes, or repurposing when nothing else is available and turning a screw.  Add to that the fact that a knife is the last line of defense, and it’s obvious why every man carries a knife all of the time.

A large folder, or a straight edge, but a good enough knife to be useful.  And spring-opened if you like that sort of thing for one-handed operation.  I know what women do – they use scissors to open boxes, but since any force on these instruments can cause instant closure of one sharp edge against another, they are dangerous.  When you see that happening, stop it and use a proper tool.  A knife.

But since every real man carries a knife all of the time, it’s no surprise that lawyers, LEOs, lawmakers and judges don’t want to see it happen.  They want the feminization of the American man until he is no more.

And in case I haven’t mentioned it enough times, every real man carries a knife all of the time.

H.R. 2940

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 1 week ago

News from the viper’s pit.

This Act may be cited as the Congressional Self-Defense Act.

2. Carrying of concealed firearms by Members of Congress

(a) In general

Chapter 44 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by inserting after section 926C the following:

926D. Carrying of concealed firearms by Members of Congress

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of Federal law or any law, rule, or regulation of a State or any political subdivision thereof, a Member of Congress who is carrying the identification required by subsection (b) and who is not otherwise prohibited by this chapter from transporting, shipping, or receiving a firearm may carry a concealed firearm for any lawful purpose—

(1) in the United States Capitol only as authorized by regulations issued under section 5104(e)(1)(A) of title 40; and
(2) anywhere else in the United States, except where the United States Secret Service is protecting the President or Vice President of the United States and prohibiting the possession of a firearm.
(b) The identification required by this subsection is a valid identification document (as defined in section 1028(d)(3) of this title) of the Member of Congress containing a photograph of the Member of Congress.
(c) In this section, the term Member of Congress means a Senator or a Representative in, or Delegate or Resident Commissioner to, the Congress.

So after preening and posturing for weeks about how self defense is the right of every American citizen, this bill does what we all knew it would, i.e., gives up on protecting God-given rights for the people and recognizes rights for the elitists.  Because shut up.  They are just like us except better.

You can count me as resolutely opposed to this bill, and I hope it goes down in flames.  No guns for Congresscritters until they have passed it for everyone.

Colorado Second Amendment Rally Honors Three Percent Founder Mike Vanderboegh

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 1 week ago

Codrea:

This year’s march will honor a patriot and friend who ended his earthly struggle almost a year ago. Publisher George Gramlich asked me to inform Oath Keepers that Mike Vanderboegh’s legacy will behonored and carried on, at least in this section of Colorado.

Well, I know George Gramlich and he is a genuinely good guy.  So is David Codrea.  And so was Mike Vanderboegh.  I miss Mike an awful lot.  If I lived anywhere near the area in Colorado, I would be there.

Are North Carolina Republicans Working To Kill Constitutional Carry?

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 2 weeks ago

Duncan Johnson at Ammoland:

After pro-gun posturing by Republicans in the NC Senate, it turns out they may never have had any intention of voting with gun owners on HB746. Senate leadership insisted, as long as gun owners were patient, as long as we were quiet, and we minded our “Ps&Qs,” we could count on the Senate to uphold their own Party platform, live up to campaign rhetoric, and push Constitutional Carry to the governor’s desk.

Of course the GOP has tried to kill constitutional carry, just like they tried to kill open carry in the South Carolina senate.

What’s worse, in the previous N.C. legislative session they gave CLEOs even more power than before rather than reversing the antiquated gun permitting process.  Heretofore, only CHP holders had to submit their medical records to CLEOs.  Now, every handgun purchase requires that, whether the buyer is a CHP holder or not.

Unfortunately, the only recourse for peaceable men is the ballot box.  Take action if you live in one of these two states.

Josh Horwitz On Insurrectionist Rhetoric

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 3 weeks ago

Josh Horwitz at The Hill:

No matter the political leanings of the perpetrator, no matter the political climate, political violence is never acceptable.

And while language alone is not to blame for this vicious shooting (see: weak laws that allow domestic abusers to purchase and possess highly lethal weapons), we must acknowledge that rhetoric — especially rhetoric espousing a violent political philosophy — can inspire such attacks.

If Republicans truly want to address such rhetoric, however, they need to start in their own camp. Because in mainstream American politics, there is no more violent philosophy than the National Rifle Association’s longstanding embrace of insurrectionism.

I have been studying, tracking, and writing about insurrectionism  —  violent revolt against one’s government  — for years.

In my 2009 book, “Guns, Democracy and the Insurrectionist Idea,” co-author Casey Anderson and I dissect the NRA’s belief that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to commit acts of violence — specifically gun violence — against government officials.

The NRA marketed this anti-democratic, insurrectionist philosophy aggressively during President Barack Obama’s time in officer.

Using myth-based fear-mongering and race-baiting, NRA leadership perpetuated the myth that Obama was planning to confiscate guns.

Gun sales soared.

Then the NRA indoctrinated GOP leaders, asking them to buy into the concept of armed political violence and spread it to their constituents.

Republicans complied …

The gunman in Alexandria resorted to “Second Amendment remedies” to deal with the tyranny he perceived under the Trump administration and the current Congress.

There is a clear parallel between the NRA’s reprehensible philosophy of insurrectionism and gunman’s horrific act of violence — the only difference is the political affiliation.

Sure.  We all jump when the NRA says so.  This is beginning rather stupidly, but okay, if you want to discuss insurrection, let’s do that.

All relationships on earth now and forever, whether economics, marriage, church or government, should be seen in terms of covenant.  When the covenant is broken, the agreement is null and void.  Furthermore, breakage of covenants doesn’t simply exonerate the guilty.  There are blessings for oath-keepers and curses for the guilty.  Breakage of covenant invokes said curses, whether enforced by man, God or both.

We do not obtain or receive our rights from any piece of parchment.  Our rights are granted by God, and are to be recognized by men in their covenants with one another.  That’s what the constitution is – a covenant.  It has both blessings and curses appurtenant to it.

If you’ve heard what you consider to be “insurrectionist” talk of second amendment remedies by anyone today, it’s likely not associated with people like the murderer Hodgkinson.  He was a fanboi of Rachel Maddow and a progressive willing to kill people in order to increase state control.  Again, let’s rehearse what the second amendment remedy is all about.

Their experience in Presbyterian polity – with its doctrine of the headship of Christ over the church, the two-powers doctrine giving the church and state equal standing (so that the church’s power is not seen as flowing from the state), and the consequent right of the people to civil resistance in accordance with higher divine law – was a major ingredient in the development of the American approach to church-state relations and the underlying questions of law, authority, order and rights.

[ … ]

It was largely from the congregation polity of these New England puritans that there came the American concept and practice of government by covenant – that is to say: constitutional structure, limited by divine law and based on the consent of the people, with a lasting right in the people to resist tyranny.

Does that sound like Hodgkinson?  No, it’s directly contrary to his world and life view, and ideas matter.  The right to resist tyranny isn’t the same thing as the alleged right to impose tyranny of which Horwitz speaks, and this redounds to more than just his party affiliation.

Above I said that Hodgkinson was willing to kill people to impose tyranny.  Was he really, or was this a front for something else?

Teenager Cathy Rainbolt told a judge her foster father hit her in the face when she failed to mow the lawn correctly. She got hit in the face when she argued. She got hit and dragged by the hair when she tried to get away.

Her foster father was James “Tom” Hodgkinson, who is now infamous after shooting U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, two police officers and a staffer on a Virginia ballfield Wednesday. Rainbolt told the judge that Hodgkinson drank every day.

“I didn’t mark a time when (Hodgkinson) started hitting me,” Rainbolt told St. Clair County Circuit Judge James Radcliffe during a hearing Nov. 21, 2006. “It’s been hard to live with (an alcoholic) and how (he) treated me,” Rainbolt said.

[ … ]

Cathy was the first of two Hodgkinson foster children to die young. In 1996, 17-year-old Wanda Ashley Stock, who had been living with the Hodgkinsons in Belleville for just three months, drove to a lonely rural road, doused herself with gasoline and set herself on fire.

It’s fairly well known that Scalise was after human traffickers and abusers.  Was this an attempted assassination because of that?  We’ll never know, but one thing is certain, morals matter.

I’ll put the collective moral constitution of the American founders up against the creepy pervert and abuser Hodgkinson any day.  Despite Horwitz’ attempt at moral equivalence, he has hung himself on his own petard.  His selection of a hero of the left for his points about insurrection make him look like the fool and ass clown he really is.  He chose a pervert, child abuser and murderer for his moral equivalence.

That’s enough, except we are informed once again what Horwitz would do in the case of governmental genocide.  He makes it clear: “No matter the political leanings of the perpetrator, no matter the political climate, political violence is never acceptable.”

Never, says he.  Not in the case of the Armenian genocide, not to save the millions of people Stalin starved out of the Ukraine, not to save the Jews and Christians killed by Hitler’s minions, not to save the Christians who have been slaughtered in Mesopotamia.

Never.  And thus we learn all we ever really need to know about the moral constitution inside Josh Horwitz.  It’s very dark, and we’re best to stick with better men and better ideas.

Congressman Massie Introduces Gun Carry Reciprocity For D.C.

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 3 weeks ago

The Washington Free Beacon:

Republican Congressman Thomas Massie (R., Ky.) introduced a bill on Thursday that would require Washington, D.C., to honor valid gun-carry permits from other states.

Rep. Massie said the D.C. Personal Protection Reciprocity Act was a direct reaction to last week’s attack on Republican congressmen at a baseball field in Alexandria, Va., which left four injured.

“After the horrific shooting at the Republican Congressional Baseball practice, there will likely be calls for special privileges to protect politicians,” Rep. Massie said in a statement. “Our reaction should instead be to protect the right of all citizens guaranteed in the Constitution: the right to self-defense. I do not want to extend a special privilege to politicians, because the right to keep and bear arms is not a privilege, it is a God-given right protected by our Constitution.”

Since we believe in incrementalism, a little here, a little there, I support this bill.  Good for Congressman Massie, who apparently understands that he is supposed to be a servant rather than a ruler.  Or so it would seem.

However, be warned, the progs will try to load this bill up with every spending abomination, every dollar they can float to their constituency, and if they can, national standards for permits.  If this happens, I withdraw my support.

If this bill passes without amendments and riders, then we can shoot for national reciprocity or even national constitutional carry later.

I’m not holding my breath.

Fudds Are Not Your Friends

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 2 weeks ago

David Codrea receives a visit from now defeated Rob Quist, who says this.

The real question that you all need to address is that while Mr. Gianforte puts out ads showing himself hunting, he has given buckets of money to the very groups whose main goal is to take our public lands. I feel like the NRA backed the wrong horse on this one, and having been in other states that have lost access to public lands, the bamboozle has begun. I got into this race to protect our public lands and surely you all must know that the number one reason that people no longer hunt, fish and recreate is the loss of access to public lands. Do some research about these groups he funds: Americans For Prosperity, PERC, and the Heritage Foundation, and you will see why the Montana Sportsmans Alliance PAC and the Hunters and Anglers backed me…

He got into the race to protect “public lands.”  This is all about hunting, fishing and recreating.  Because he says so.  That’s our second amendment right.

Well, if the Montana Sportsmans Alliance PAC and the Hunters and Anglers (whomever that is) actually backed him, they should be ashamed.  The Montana Sportsmans Alliance PAC and the Hunters and Anglers are welcome to drop by and explain themselves.

Do Your Job, Representative Culberson

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 3 weeks ago

David Codrea:

“So please, Congressman Culberson, make the right choice and delete the Schumer amendment from this year’s Commerce-Justice-Science ‘chairman’s mark,’” GOA asks in a representative message intended for members to amplify.

I’d go a step further. I’d let Culberson know that with an “A”-rating from GOA and with an “A+” and endorsement from NRA, I shouldn’t have to be sending polite form mailers asking him to “please” do his job. He’s happy to accept gun owners support and to represent himself as a Second Amendment leader and champion.  It’s not too much to expect him to act like one and to vocally lead the charge on this, especially since it’s taking place in his wheelhouse.

Yea.  I’m damn sick and tired of good ratings for senate gargoyles and congresscritters who undercut their constituency.  Things like this are easily fixed if we just have the guts to hold our representatives accountable.

It’s also a crying shame, I might add, that a single man has this kind of power.  What an awful place, this den of pit vipers.

You Can Get Charged With Murder For Defensive Gun Use — Even In A ‘Stand Your Ground’ State

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 3 weeks ago

Forbes:

Since American citizens have the right to keep and bear arms (not just law enforcement officials, as gun control advocates maintain), it would seem to follow that they’re entitled to use their weapons when they are threatened.

More than a century ago, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized that in Beard v. United States, where the first Justice Harlan wrote that the defendant, who had been convicted of manslaughter for killing a man in a violent dispute,

was not obliged to retreat, not to consider whether he could safely retreat, but was     entitled to stand his ground, and meet any attack upon him with a deadly weapon, in such a way and with such force as, under all the circumstances, he, at the moment honestly believed, and had reasonable grounds to believe, were necessary to save his own life, or to protect himself from great bodily injury.

To codify that right and prevent people from being put on trial for reasonable, defensive gun use when a prosecutor thinks they might instead have retreated or fled, 24 states have enacted “stand your ground” statutes. Among them is North Carolina, but a recent case there shows that when prosecutors and judges want to convict a man for using his gun, the “stand your ground” law can be trampled upon.

Gyrell Lee had been celebrating New Year’s Eve with his cousin Jamiel Walker in the latter’s home. Throughout the evening, a known troublemaker, Quinton Epps, came by and argued with Walker. When Epps returned with friends and became increasingly belligerent, Lee decided that he should get his gun from his car just in case matters got worse. Lee had completed his concealed carry class and was familiar with the law on gun use.

Epps returned once more and a shouting match between himself and Walker ensued in the street. Walker lost his temper and punched Epps, at which point Epps drew a pistol and shot Walker in the stomach. Walker fell and Epps then turned his gun on Lee, who had his gun out. Lee fired and killed Epps.

Lee was subsequently arrested and charged with second-degree murder. He was a bystander who had acted in self-defense, but nevertheless local officials wanted to make an example of him.

At trial, Lee’s attorney argued that he had acted in self-defense. But in charging the jury, the judge failed to make any mention of the state’s “stand your ground” law or the defendant’s right to use force in the defense of his cousin (who had died of his wounds). The jury returned a verdict of guilty.

On appeal, the North Carolina Court of Appeals upheld the conviction, holding that the trial judge had not committed “plain error” in charging the jury without bringing up the state’s “stand your ground” statute. In pertinent part, that law reads “A person is justified in the use of deadly force and does not have a duty to retreat in any place he or she has the lawful right to be if …he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another.” The Court of Appeals wasn’t convinced that the judge had made an error because it wasn’t sure that the statute applied in Lee’s case due to its uncertainty that a public street outside his home counted as “a place he had the lawful right to be.”

Good grief …

Good grief indeed.  George Leef has done a good job with this article, and I appreciate his having followed and written on this issue.  We are reminded of a number of important things in this report.

First of all, we always encounter the opposition of statists when we advocate justified and righteous laws like stand your ground.  This is the first hurdle to overcome, as it is with proposed open carry laws, constitutional carry bill, and so on.

But if we get past the gaggle of gargoyles and demons in the houses of perdition that is the Senates of most states and the U.S. Senate, we face prosecutors.  The laws may say that we are recognized as having a right to self defense, but you must understand that these lawyers have been trained in the philosophy and legal theory of Stanley Fish and Jacques Derrida.  They don’t care about your God given rights or even what the law says.  If they want to, they will prosecute you if they think they can win.  Just because.  Shut up.

Then if you get past the hurdle of what the law says or how some recent law school graduate feels that day, you have the jury with which to contend.  Remember folks.  Juries are comprised by people who, on average, voted for Hillary Clinton, or had a hard time making up their minds, or who, if they didn’t vote for Hillary and Obama before her, couldn’t think their way out of a wet paper bag or hold attention long enough to listen to legal arguments in defense of someone like Mr. Lee.

Most jury members are too caught up thinking about their favorite night time sitcom to worry over things like putting someone away for life who simply shot in self defense.  Besides, that smartly dressed lawyer said he was guilty.  We’re law and order people.  He must be guilty.

When you entrust your life to a jury, it’s usually no better than entrusting it to a crooked judge.  That’s the sad state of the American system of “justice” today.  Stay away from crowds.  Think carefully about your actions.


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