Archive for the 'Second Amendment' Category

Vox Writer Dylan Matthews Advocates Civil War

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 1 week ago


Realistically, a gun control plan that has any hope of getting us down to European levels of violence is going to mean taking a huge number of guns away from a huge number of gun owners.

Other countries have done exactly that. Australia, for example, enacted a mandatory gun buyback that achieved that goal, and saw firearm suicides fall as a result. But the reforms those countries enacted are far more dramatic than anything US politicians are calling for — and even they wouldn’t get us to where many other developed countries are.

Always remember that.  The progressives who really understand what’s going on know that in order to disarm the American public would require taking a “huge number of guns away from a huge number of gun owners.”

But here his understanding stops, because he thinks the American people will acquiesce to a buyback.  Either this is a red herring or he’s stupid.

It may be a red herring and he knows there will be untold bloodshed and doesn’t care, or he’s stupid and thinks that something that worked in Australia will work here, where armed resistance is the amelioration for tyranny, always has been, and always will be.  Or said another way, being armed is the amelioration for tyranny if and only if it is exercised, and apparently the Australian people didn’t want to go down that road, being “subjects of the crown” and all of that.

We won’t give up our guns.  If Dylan knows that, then he also knows that the notion that confiscating guns wouldn’t end bloodshed – it would cause it to crescendo into a river of red.  But be careful, Dylan.  If you’re not armed, you won’t fare well in a period of armed resistance.  Fair winds and following seas isn’t the way your life will be described.

Tyrants Love Gun Control

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago

ISIS fighters were gun controllers, remember.

ISIS was telling everyone, ‘We’re all brothers,’ ” Abu Malik said. “They let people smoke and drink. At the checkpoints, they distributed presents to the kids. They ate with people, drank tea with people. They were very nice—they didn’t bother anyone. Then, a week or so after they arrived, they started confiscating weapons. They told us it didn’t matter if we’d been with the Awakening or the Army or the police—if we gave up our weapons, we’d be forgiven. Ten days later, they started taking people. Everything changed. They took my cousin. My brothers dug holes in the fields and hid. I was at my house when they came for me. It was afternoon. I saw two Hyundai Santa Fes pull up outside, and I ran out the back and jumped over the wall. That was the last time I saw my family.”

This is no different than Adolf Hitler, who confiscated weapons and outlawed a lot of other firearms hardware from his enemies.

… the Nazi seizure of power in 1933 was consolidated by massive searches and seizures of firearms from political opponents, who were invariably described as “communists.” After five years of repression and eradication of dissidents, Hitler signed a new gun control law in 1938, which benefitted Nazi party members and entities, but denied firearm ownership to enemies of the state.

Do you want more?

“The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms.  History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing.  Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the supply of arms to the underdogs is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty.   So let’s not have any native militia or native police. German troops alone will bear the sole responsibility for the maintenance of law and order throughout the occupied Russian territories, and a system of military strong-points must be evolved to cover the entire occupied country.”

How about Benito Mussolini.

“The measures adopted to restore public order are: First of all, the elimination of the so-called subversive elements. … They were elements of disorder and subversion.  On the morrow of each conflict I gave the categorical order to confiscate the largest possible number of weapons of every sort and kind.  This confiscation, which continues with the utmost energy, has given satisfactory results.”

We could go on with Pol Pot, communist China, Stalin, the Christian Armenian genocide at the hands the Turkish Muslims, and so on.  Suffice it to say that dictators love gun control.

What about today?

Khamenei’s “hard line” on guns is nothing new. One of the Ayatollah’s first orders of business, when he came to power, was to disarm his own citizens – a technique regularly used by “supreme leaders” to extend their tenures.

Ultimately, Khamenei makes a unique case that the Second Amendment is, in fact, an insurance policy against tyranny.

Now, of course, the left, despite being vocal on gun control for the last several weeks, embracing nearly every unqualified expert in agreement with them, up to and including members of the Kardashian family, has been silent on the Ayatollah’s expressed agreement with their agenda. But there is an undercurrent of support – as recently as early January, the Huffington Post wrote glowingly of some of the Ayatollah’s ideas.

Gun control is tyranny, and tyrants love gun control.  It’s in their blood.  It’s who they are.  Any time you hear talk of gun control, remember this and equate the advocate of gun control with Stalin, Mussolini, Turkish Muslims, Khamenei, and ISIS.

This includes any gun control measures, like advocating a ban on bump stocks.  Hey, didn’t the NRA do this?

There’s A Special Place In Hell For This Guy

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago

David Codrea:

“If the only thing that comes out of this tragedy is we outlaw bump stocks and we raise the age at which people are allowed to buy an AR-15, that will be a failure,” … “Because the reality – from my perspective – is you need to do what we’ve always tried to do, which is to ban the sale of AR-15s, have universal background checks, and also take away the ability to buy these large magazines.”

Guess who said that?  That’s right.  Behind door number 1, you get a special prize to Fast and Furious.  The same guy who actually gave all of those same things to gangsters and killers in order to do the same thing in America he just said … “ban the sale of AR-15s, have universal background checks, and also take away the ability to buy these large magazines.”

From my cold, dead hands, Eric.  And no, I’m not talking about the Charlton Heston kind of cold, dead hands.  I mean as one who really believes in God-given rights to own whatsoever he damn well pleases to own.

Tanks Versus AK-47s And Other Aspects Of The Gun Debate

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago

In this Atlantic piece, James Fallows is citing readers, one of whom landed this dud.

The following passage from the person who wanted to compare plinking with guns to flying private planes stuck in my craw (passage spans two paragraphs of the original):

“…the admittedly whacked out perspective that they will fight the oppressive government should it ever come to that.  Again, the last is probably ridiculous, but it is a psychic benefit important to many people.”

To me this was the real nubbin of the argument that was being made: The idea that people are entitled to work out their issues with society by playing with lethal weapons. Think about that one.

How anyone can justify this as “well-regulated militia” is beyond me — it’s more like the opposite.

And what is the “psychic benefit”? For this, read what some of your subsequent correspondents said about white male privilege. These white guys are out in some vacant area shooting up targets or fenceposts or whatever not just for fun similar to paintball or video games, but in order to feel that they are maintaining a certain level of violent threat against others — against their neighbors, really. Let’s not be satisfied with vague talk of “psychic benefit”. This is surely what we are talking about.

The stuff about flying vs. shooting was, as far as I am concerned, a typical astroturfing argument, diverting the reader’s attention from the real point to meta-issues of logic, and thus putting the brakes on discussion rather than furthering it.

Let’s begin with Fallows’ assertion that it is a whacked out position that armed citizens can hold the government accountable.  We’ve asserted differently before.

… while the U.S. military goes about its business preparing for fifth generation warfare, they do so because they haven’t learned how to win fourth generation warfare and are planning their next engagement being a near-peer.

Do you suppose this would look like great land armies getting into formation at the edges of great fields of battle and marching towards each other?  What do you think such a messy civil war in America would look like?  Bubba would be wearing a Ghillie suit, shooting a bolt action rifle, or a modern sporting rifle, and after the shot you will never hear from him again – until the next one.  And you’ll never catch him.  Police will have to decide what side to take, and if they take the wrong one, they will be dealt with in the middle of the night when they take their dogs out to pee in the backyard.

Insurgent will be mixed with progressive statist, and there will be no SEAL teams or nuclear weapons to which you can turn because you won’t know one from another.  There will be nowhere to target a nuclear weapon, and nowhere for a SEAL team to raid.  All of their close quarters battle preparations will be for naught when their own families are in peril due to civil warfare.  These aren’t Afghan tribesmen you’re dealing with.  These are engineers, mechanics, fabricators and welders, chemists, and the world’s best machinists.  If you think Afghanistan was rough, wait to see what civil war would look like in America.

If you have ever said something like, “You can’t win because the government has a land army and nuclear weapons,” here is the moral of the story for you.  You are an idiot.  You haven’t thought through this well enough, and you need to see the second amendment for what it really is.  It is the best guarantor of peace because tyranny is mutually assured destruction.  The statists know that, or else America will suffer the consequences.

So it looks like Fallows is an idiot, but I suspected that.  Next up, let’s deal with the reader’s note to Fallows where he pans the idea that “people are entitled to work out their issues with society by playing with lethal weapons.”  So let’s play a little thought experiment.  Replace “people” with “victims” during the Armenian genocide at the hands of the Turkish Muslims, Pol Pot’s regime, Stalin’s reign, Hitler’s rule, the genocide of Christians in Mesopotamia, Egypt or Uganda.  Recalling that the number of victims of mass shootings at the hands of government entities approaches 170 million between the years of 1901 and 1990, perhaps this self righteous reader would like to explain to us why the victims would have been wrong to defend themselves from genocide?  Go ahead, we’re listening.

As for the final paragraph where the reader uses the terms “astroturfing” and “meta-issues of logic,” I’m not at all convinced that he understands what those terms mean.  In fact, without more context, the entire paragraph is nonsense.

I’m sure in the thousands upon thousands of posts I’ve made something I’ve said could be claimed to be stupid, so I won’t hold Fallows responsible for one stupid article, although a pattern of stupidity is certainly self-inflicted harm.  But I surely have better readers than that, and I think it’s embarrassing for Fallows that he used this letter as an example of reader feedback.

Condoleezza Rice On Guns

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago

The Blaze:

“Let me tell you why I’m a defender of the Second Amendment,” she began.

“I was a little girl growing up in Birmingham, Alabama, in the late fifties, early sixties,” she explained. “There was no way that Bull Connor and the Birmingham Police were going to protect you.”

“And so when White Knight Riders would come through our neighborhood,” she said, “my father and his friends would take their guns and they’d go to the head of the neighborhood, it’s a little cul-de-sac and they would fire in the air, if anybody came through.”

“I don’t think they actually ever hit anybody,” she continued. “But they protected the neighborhood. And I’m sure if Bull Connor had known where those guns were he would have rounded them up.”

“And so, I don’t favor some things like gun registration,” she said to a suddenly silent crowd.

“That said, it’s time to have a national conversation about how we can deal with the problems we have. It’s not going to be any single fix to the terrible events at Parkland,” she concluded.

It’s this last part that’s important, but more on that in a minute.  David Codrea links at Washington Times piece saying this.

Bam. That’s it in a nutshell — this is why founders saw fit to put in place a Second Amendment. It wasn’t a right to hunt they were defending; it was a God-given right to protect one’s self and one’s family from harm. And specifically: from harm from the government

And David points out the same thing I’m about to.

“I think it is time to have a conversation about what the right to bear arms means in the modern world,” Rice told radio host Hugh Hewitt on Friday. “I don’t understand why civilians need to have access to military weapons. We wouldn’t say you can go out and buy a tank.”

More specifically, Rice said weapons like the AR-15 rifle that authorities say shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz, 19, used to kill 17 students and teachers Feb. 14, shouldn’t be available to civilians, the Washington Times reported.

I would absolutely say that I should be able to go out and buy a tank with all of the ammunition I could afford to use with it.  So here’s  the bottom line, Ms. Rice.  We have the second amendment to protect us from fake second amendment supporters like you.  My conversation on the RTKBA with you can be neatly summarized as follows: Molon Labe.  That’s about all the conversation I’ll have with you.

You’re what’s called a wolf in sheep’s clothing.  Hey, I recall a time when you supported race sensitive admissions.  I’m just saying that you’re not who you’re purported to be.  But you fit in well with Mr. Bush, who was exactly who he was purported to be, having first sought permission from Bob Bullock to run for governor of Texas.

If There’s A Constitutional Right To Own Firearms, Is There Also A Right To Sell Them?

BY Herschel Smith
4 months ago

Well, the obvious answer is yes, but just because it’s obvious doesn’t mean that pinheaded judges get it.

Teixeira has petitioned the Supreme Court to review his case. In this amicus brief, Cato Institute, the Millennial Policy Center, and the Independence Institute seek to persuade the Supreme Court to take it.

The brief goes deeply into the history of ownership and commerce relating to firearms, back to the colonial era. To support its stance, the Ninth Circuit relied on laws from that time that put restrictions on sales of guns and gunpowder to Indians, but the brief argues that such laws were exceptions to “the general right of firearms commerce.” Early Americans and certainly the Founders understood that, with but a few precise limitations, the people were to be as free to buy and sell arms and ammunition as they were to buy and sell anything else.

The notion that the founders would have wanted government control over who could sell guns or anything else, and to whom they could make the sale, is ridiculous on its face.  Anyone who believes that simply doesn’t believe the complaints the founders proffered: “He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.”

But then, perhaps they don’t teach American history in schools of law any more.

Prominent Republican Donor Issues Ultimatum On Assault Weapons

BY Herschel Smith
4 months ago


A prominent Republican political donor demanded on Saturday that the party pass legislation to restrict access to guns, and vowed not to contribute to any candidates or electioneering groups that did not support a ban on the sale of military-style firearms to civilians.

Al Hoffman Jr., a Florida-based real estate developer who was a leading fund-raiser for George W. Bush’s campaigns, said he would seek to marshal support among other Republican political donors for a renewed assault weapons ban.

“For how many years now have we been doing this — having these experiences of terrorism, mass killings — and how many years has it been that nothing’s been done?” Mr. Hoffman said in an interview. “It’s the end of the road for me.”

Mr. Hoffman announced his ultimatum in an email to half a dozen Republican leaders, including Jeb Bush and Gov. Rick Scott of Florida. He wrote in the email that he would not give money to Mr. Scott, who is considering a campaign for the Senate in 2018, or other Florida Republicans he has backed in the past, including Representative Brian Mast, if they did not support new gun legislation.

“I will not write another check unless they all support a ban on assault weapons,” he wrote. “Enough is enough!”

Mr. Hoffman, a former ambassador to Portugal, has donated millions to Republican candidates and causes over the years, including more than $1 million to Right to Rise, a “super PAC” that supported Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign in 2016.

A critic of President Trump, Mr. Hoffman has continued to donate heavily to other Republicans.

[ … ]

Peter S. Rummell, a Jacksonville-based donor who gave $125,000 to Jeb Bush’s “super PAC” in 2016, said he was on board with Mr. Hoffman’s plan and would only contribute to candidates supportive of banning assault weapons. He said the Parkland shooting was a turning point: “It has to start somewhere,” Mr. Rummell said, of controlling guns.

Even on its own, Mr. Hoffman’s money will be missed: He contributed heavily to Republican congressional candidates in 2016 and gave $25,000 last spring to the Senate Leadership Fund, a group backed by Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, that is focused on defending Republicans’ Senate majority.

I couldn’t give a rat’s ass in hell what this guy says or does.  But I have to admit that in a way I do.  I hope he succeeds.  He’s just doing what comes naturally to him, to wit, bullying people with his purse.

It’s not a lot different than, say, calls to repeal the second amendment, or “journalists” who run with that editorial and claim that if suburban moms just get involved, things will change.  As if suburban moms are ready to go door-to-door and confiscate guns, or are ready for the bloody carnage that would follow upon such an edict.

But it’s no accident and actually quite amusing that this prominent donor was significantly behind Jeb Bush’s campaign.  We know where the heart of the GOP is, and the valuable lesson in all of this is that just as it was necessary to divide the sheep from the goats, identifying and ejecting the impostors and traitors from our midst and making sure that the internecine warfare has ended is a necessary exigency in the campaign for liberty.

This is good.  At one time I argued data, endless numbers and definitions and connections and correlations.  I probably will still do that given my profession, but the important thing here is that the opposition doesn’t care any more about that than I care about whether this donor bullies people with his money.  We’re beyond that now.  We’ve gone many miles in our dance together.

You see, you can change the constitution if you wish, and I won’t change a thing about myself or what I do.  My rights come from God, not the constitution.  I’ve oft repeated that the constitution is a covenant, an agreement, just like in marriage or work.  There are blessings for those who honor that covenant, and curses for those who don’t.  Under the second amendment, the government has covenanted and contracted not to infringe.  The constitution isn’t God and cannot issue rights or duties – it’s an agreement before God and men.  As for infringe, they have many times, of course, and if not for the longsuffering nature of the American people, the curses of covenant breakage would have already obtained.

But the American people are not longsuffering forever, and what must happen will eventually happen, for it must.  So if you want to go full orbed, full on, all out covenant breakage, go right ahead and do that.  It may be the last straw.  All the opinionator is arguing for is a civil war, since he must be presupposing that gun owners will go peacefully into the night as long as enough people vote for it.

This is a dangerous presupposition, and the suburban soccer moms aren’t ready for what ensues.  So queue up your best soccer moms, or even your best SWAT teams.  We know where they live, and there aren’t anywhere nearly enough of them.  Come and get them if that’s what you want.  We’re waiting.

Guns Aren’t A Bulwark Against Tyranny: The Rule Of Law Is

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 1 week ago

So says Michael Shermer of Skeptic magazine:

Gun-rights advocates also make the grandiose claim that gun ownership is a deterrent against tyrannical governments. Indeed, the wording of the Second Amendment makes this point explicitly: “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” That may have made sense in the 1770s, when breech-loading flintlock muskets were the primary weapons tyrants used to conquer other peoples and subdue their own citizens who could, in turn, equalize the power equation by arming themselves with equivalent firepower. But that is no longer true.

If you think stock piling firearms from the local Guns and Guitars store, where the Las Vegas shooter purchased some of his many weapons, and dressing up in camouflage and body armor is going to protect you from an American military capable of delivering tanks and armored vehicles full Navy SEALs to your door, you’re delusional. The tragic incidents at Ruby Ridge, in Idaho, and Waco, Tex., in the 1990s, in which citizens armed to the teeth collided with government agencies and lost badly, is a case study for what would happen were the citizenry to rise up in violence against the state today.

Gun Rights Update In Delaware Courtesy Of The Delaware Supreme Court

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 1 week ago

I covered this earlier when it was argued before the Delaware Supreme Court.  Of course, the legal system in Delaware was arguing before the court that they couldn’t carry firearms.  This exchange followed in deliberations, and then I asked a pointed question.

Valihura also pressed Durstein about an individual’s right to carry a gun for self-defense, which he argued is less acute in a park tent or cabin than in a person’s home. Durstein said the trade-off for banning guns is a commitment by the state to provide law enforcement in state parks.

“Your own regs state that camping is at your own risk, state forests are a public use area and there are no after-hours, nighttime or weekend security,” Valihura noted.

With no evidentiary record to draw on, Justice James Vaughn also wondered about the protection being afforded park visitors.

“We have no idea how much police security is actually provided in these state parks, do we?” Vaughn asked. “I’ve been in them. Occasionally you’ll see a ranger go by, something like that, but I don’t seen any police presence in there.”

I posed this.

Why the hell does the legal system keep promulgating this idiotic myth that the police are there to protect anyone?  They aren’t, and they know it.  And the police know it.  The only people who don’t know it are the peasants who think the police will come to their rescue.

Remember.  In the 1981 decision in Warren v. District of Columbia the D.C. Court of Appeals concluded that it is a “fundamental principle of American law that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any individual citizen.”  In Castle Rock v. Gonzales (2005), the Supreme Court declined to expand any requirements for protection and ruled that the police cannot be sued for failure to protect individuals, even when restraining orders were in place.

Maybe the Supreme Court listened.

Delaware Supreme Court justices have ruled that a weapons ban in Delaware’s state parks and forests is unconstitutional.

As of 4 p.m. Thursday, it is now legal to bring firearms into state parks and forests. Since the 1960s, a ban on firearms has prohibited people, even those with a permit, to carry a concealed, deadly weapon on thousands of acres of state-owned parks.

A similar ban concerning state forests followed in the 1970s. Those rules did include exceptions for hunting, which did not apply to people carrying concealed weapons for self-defense.

Gun advocates who fought the ban are applauding the decision, which they say upholds a God-given right to bear arms.

“They did the right thing,” said Jeff Hague, one of several plaintiffs named in the lawsuit originally filed in Chancery Court in 2015. “This reaffirms the constitutional right that Delawareans have … to self-defense and the right to keep and bear arms, not just in hunting and fishing and sporting, but in defense of their family and home.”

Hague, who serves as the treasurer of the Bridgeville Rifle and Pistol Club and president of the Delaware State Sportsmen’s Association.

Who knows.  If I didn’t persuade them, I’m glad somebody did.

How We Got The Hughes Amendment

BY Herschel Smith
7 months, 4 weeks ago

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill have tried banning certain guns before. Nearly two decades ago, they barred the sale of semiautomatic assault weapons, only to let that law lapse 10 years later. But one gun ban has stayed on the books: a measure Congress passed a quarter-century ago making it illegal for civilians to buy or sell any machine gun made from that date forward. That legislation passed with the blessing of the National Rifle Association, which now opposes gun control measures.

In April 1986, after months of efforts, the NRA had finally rallied enough support in the Democratic-controlled House to force a bill onto the floor. The so-called Firearms Owners’ Protection Act would undo many of the provisions in the 1968 Gun Control Act, passed shortly after Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King were shot dead.

But just as the bill was about to come to a final vote in that tumultuous House session, New Jersey Democrat William Hughes introduced an amendment. It would forbid the sale to civilians of all machine guns made after the law took effect.

There were enough Democrats to pass the amendment, so nobody objected when the presiding officer, New York Democrat Charles Rangel, called for a voice vote rather than a roll call vote on the machine gun ban.

Former NRA lobbyist Richard Feldman, who has since parted ways with the organization, tells NPR that Wayne LaPierre, currently NRA’s executive vice president, was willing to let the machine gun ban go forward if it meant the larger bill it was attached to would pass.

“I remember very well having dinner … with Wayne LaPierre on the big victory after it passed the House,” he says. “And we weren’t too concerned about the machine gun issue, but it came back to haunt Warren Cassidy.”

At the time, Cassidy headed the NRA’s lobby, the Institute for Legislative Action. He confirms now that LaPierre, who did not respond to a request for comment, pushed hard to let the machine gun ban stand.

“He said, ‘I want to do it. I think we have to do it.’ So I said yes, and that was the end of the story. It passed, and as we learned immediately, an element of NRA, a very vociferous element of NRA … determined that it just couldn’t be that way,” Cassidy says. “We couldn’t give an inch. I don’t think they ever forgave me for it.”

Gun laws expert Robert Spitzer of the State University of New York at Cortland says the bill President Reagan signed into law was more significant than it was perceived at the time.

“One can view the Congress’ action in 1986 to ban civilian possession of fully automatic weapons as something of a kind of a precedent that would open the door for restricting civilian access to semiautomatic, assault-style weapons,” Spitzer says.

Spitzer says a major reason the machine gun ban met so little resistance was a 1934 law passed a month after outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow were killed in a hail of machine gun bullets. It required machine gun owners to pay a hefty tax, be fingerprinted and be listed on a national registry.

As a result, he says, sales of machine guns plummeted.

“It is a good example of something that is little known, which is a gun control law that was pretty effective in keeping such weapons out of civilian hands,” he says. “So by 1986, when the provision was added to the Firearm Owners’ Protection Act to bar any newly produced fully automatic weapon from possession by civilians, it was really a fairly small step to make, because so few of them were in circulation to begin with.”

This piece is dated, but it makes sense to rehearse the facts every once in a while.  We have the Hughes amendment because the NRA wanted it.  And one particular foci was “sporting purposes.”

As I’ve said before, with friends like that, who needs enemies?

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