Judge Upholds California Gun Microstamping Law

Herschel Smith · 01 Mar 2015 · 7 Comments

CBS Sacramento: A federal court has rejected a challenge to California’s gun safety law, possibly paving the way for a requirement that new guns mark the bullets they fire so they can be traced. The ruling on Wednesday was a defeat for two gun rights groups that argued the Unsafe Handgun Act violated the constitutional right to bear arms. The law prohibits the manufacture or sale in California of any gun that doesn’t meet certain safety requirements. It was aimed at outlawing cheap…… [read more]

Asset Forfeiture Laws Are Evil

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 13 hours ago

Detroit Free Press:

Thomas Williams was alone that November morning in 2013 when police raided his rural St. Joseph County home, wearing black masks, camouflage and holding guns at their sides. They broke down his front door with a battering ram.

“We think you’re dealing marijuana,” they told Williams, a 72-year-old, retired carpenter and cancer patient who is disabled and carries a medical marijuana card.

When he protested, they handcuffed him and left him on the living room floor as they ransacked his home, emptying drawers, rummaging through closets and surveying his grow room, where he was nourishing his 12 personal marijuana plants as allowed by law. Some had recently begun to die, so he had cloned them and had new seedlings, although they were not yet planted. That, police insisted, put him over the limit.

They did not charge Williams with a crime, though.

Instead, they took his Dodge Journey, $11,000 in cash from his home, his television, his cell phone, his shotgun and are attempting to take his Colon Township home. And they plan to keep the proceeds, auctioning off the property and putting the cash in police coffers.

More than a year later, he is still fighting to get his belongings back and to hang on to his house.

“I want to ask them, ‘Why? Why me?’ I gave them no reason to do this to me,” said Williams, who says he also suffers from glaucoma, a damaged disc in his back, and COPD, a lung disorder. “I’m out here minding my own business, and just wanted to be left alone.”

The seizure was allowed under Michigan’s Civil Asset Forfeiture laws, which allow police to take property from citizens if they suspect a crime was committed, even when there is not enough evidence to charge them. Homeowners like Williams have to prove they did not purchase their property with proceeds from criminal activity and then sue to get the property back.

Why you?  You happened to be available when the police needed to raise some revenue.  It’s that simple.  I’m so sorry for this poor man (and let me say here that I couldn’t care less that he had some hemp growing in his house, any more than I care if a man makes some untaxed corn liquor in his back yard), but these laws made by the legislature are evil.

I don’t care what this man did.  There isn’t any reason at all that the state should legally be able to confiscate possessions.  In the worst case (let’s say that a man goes to prison for murder), his possessions could be treated as if he passed away and his will invoked (his children would then inherit his possessions, or whomever was named in his will).  The advantage of this is that if he doesn’t have a will, he can be queried by the court to ascertain who he wants to inherit his belongings.

Readers may have better ideas.  Anything is better than the state taking possession of property, and I see no basis in English common law or the Holy Scriptures for such laws.

More From Eugene Volokh On Open Carry

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 13 hours ago

Recall that I had some questions for Eugene Volokh here?  Eugene responded thusly via email:

Eugene: To answer your questions, of course if a state decided to order police officers to carry concealed, police officers would have to carry concealed – just as it can tell them what kinds of guns to carry, what kinds of uniforms to wear (or not wear, if they’re undercover), or whatever else.  When the state hires someone to provide armed protection for the public, it can tell prescribe in great detail just how this duty is to be carried out (and how it is not to be carried out).

HPS: Thanks for the response, but I confess that I find it most unsatisfying because you have grounded your answer in contractual obligations rather than whether something rises to the level of being an infringement of basic rights.

Eugene: Well, you asked a question:  “Suppose rather than the rights of an ‘ordinary’ citizen being addressed here it was the rights of law enforcement officers who may need to defend their lives….  Would any court in the land have dared to force LEOs to carry concealed?”  The answers is every court in the land would uphold such a requirement.  (Indeed, I’m pretty sure that many nonuniformed police officers are expected to carry concealed, and are sometimes required to carry concealed.)  Now you say you’re unsatisfied because my answer is based on contractual obligations.  (To be precise, it’s based in the government’s power to fire employees, with or without a contract, who don’t follow its rules on such matters.)  But your own question was premised on “contractual” matters:  The only reason that law enforcement officers are law enforcement officers is that the government has hired them to do the job.  You can’t ask a question about what law enforcement officers – who are called that only because they are a particular kind of employee – can be forced to do (on pain of losing their jobs), and then sensibly object to the answer that law enforcement officers have to follow the rules set forth by their employers.

Perhaps because of an unintentional misdirect on my part, I think Eugene is missing the broader point I tried to make.  If it isn’t an infringement on rights to force individuals to carry concealed rather than openly, is he in fact not acknowledging the very real delay in presenting the weapon for use with an effective sight picture (carrying concealed means that the weapon can get hung on shirts, pants, and other clothing, and certainly means a delay in presenting the weapon due to the need to remove the offending clothing in order to get to the weapon).

And if this is all true, wouldn’t LEOs point it out if we required them to carry concealed?  And if this isn’t an infringement of rights, then at what point does it become so?  Can the law require us to have one hand tied behind our back?  If seems a silly question, and how about one to which the courts would no doubt be more amenable?  Would it infringe on our rights if the law required us to have our weapons unloaded, regardless of method of carry?  Or would it infringe on our rights if the law required us to have two or more garments covering a weapon in order to ensure that we had no inadvertent flashing of the weapon if we bend over or in a stiff wind?

Eugene has more on open carry.

… it seems to me that, under the First Amendment, the state can’t ban someone from wearing a T-shirt or a large pin saying “I’m legally carrying a concealed handgun” at the same time that he is legally carrying a concealed handgun. The T-shirt or pin wouldn’t be a punishable threat of illegal conduct, because it is specifically referring to legal conduct, and it offers no reason to think that the wearer is going to use the gun illegally. And while wearing such an item might draw police attention, so would legal open carry.

Let’s take this sort of “announced carry” — concealed carry coupled with a statement that one is carrying — a step further. Say that some gun rights enthusiasts start wearing transparent plastic gun-shaped things strapped to their hips, in transparent holsters — something that is obviously not a real gun, but is symbolic of a real gun. (It should certainly not look like these T-shirts with realistic-looking holsters and guns printed on them.)

When asked, the wearers explain that these are symbolic of the fact that they are indeed lawfully carrying a concealed gun. The news gets out, and wearing such a transparent item on one’s hip will become understood as equivalent to a T-shirt saying “I’m legally carrying a concealed handgun.” (Compare how wearing particular ribbons or other symbols becomes understood at times as a particular kind of statement.) I likewise think this can’t be banned; the only reason to ban the holster would be the message that it sends, which would likewise violate the First Amendment.

On balance, the effect wouldn’t be terribly different from open carry …

Well, I think it would, and Eugene doesn’t account for the fact that some of us who open carry are not doing so in order to make a point (although I don’t disparage point-making as a legitimate end).  I consider concealed carry to be intrusive, uncomfortable and inefficient regarding “presentation” of the weapon.

What do readers think?

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Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 14 hours ago

David Codrea:

It’s also in spite of almost daily revelations corroborating the increasing danger, and not just from the “illegal” side of the equation. Just within the past day, we’ve learned that Muslim immigration is outpacing that from Mexico and Central America, that 40 percent of New Yorkers are now foreign-born and half the residents of New York City speak a language other than English at home. We’ve also seen that the Border Patrol has been ordered to curtail deportations. Both legal and illegal immigration are being exploited by cheap labor Republicans and “earned citizenship” Democrats, both counting on the directed “cultural terraforming” to advance globalist interests and “fundamentally transform” the country.

David and I have been insistent, and for a very long time now, that the most insidious and dangerous threat to America has been and continues to be immigration, both legal and illegal.  The only question that remains is this: have we reached the point of no return?  If so, then we participate in politics in order to give us all more time to prepare for the inevitable dystopia.

David Codrea:

Johnson’s advice, that “public vigilance, public awareness and public caution in situations like this is particularly important” is true enough, but what’s lacking from that counsel is public preparedness to do anything about it if an attack happens, in spite of reassurances and promises of “enhanced security.” That’s because … well … let Mall of America speak for itself.

“At Mall of America, safety is a top priority,” it advises visitors on a Guests & Security page. “Guns are banned on these premises.”

So then you stay off those premises.  Simple.  Let Johnson answer for everything that happens after that.

Jesus invoked in the russian rebel’s war on the Ukraine?  Um, since we don’t know what Jesus looked like, the only real picture I see is of Che Guevara.  And I know Jesus and an egomaniacal communist named Putin have nothing to do with each other.

Gun prank in Deleware court:

A prank involving two prosecutors, a courthouse bailiff and a pointed gun has led a judge to revoke the ability of bailiffs statewide to carry firearms when working in courtrooms.

The incident occurred the week of Feb. 2 on the second floor of the Sussex County Courthouse, where the county’s Superior Court is housed. A person who works in the courthouse said the prank involved the courthouse’s chief bailiff, Delbert Garrison, opening the door to a side room where lawyers work and pointing his service weapon at a deputy attorney general in the room.

[ … ]

In the wake of the prank, Superior Court President Judge Jan Jurden made a decision to disallow bailiffs from carrying firearms, two sources told The News Journal. The decision was conveyed to attorneys and courthouse staff Wednesday.

David says not much else is needed in the way of commentary.  I don’t know, I wanted to offer up one observation.  Notice in response to this irresponsible act (which no reader of mine would ever perpetrate), the judge engaged in the same thing they always do, i.e., pre-emptive policing and judging, rather than simply holding the perpetrators accountable for their actions.

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Politifact On George Washington On Guns

BY Herschel Smith
1 week ago

Politifact:

Would George Washington have been an ally to modern-day gun-rights groups? A social-media meme suggests that he would have.

Around the time of Washington’s 282nd birthday, a reader sent us the meme, which includes a painting of Washington and a quote purportedly written or uttered by the nation’s first president: “When government takes away citizens’ right to bear arms it becomes citizens’ duty to take away government’s right to govern.”

But are those really Washington’s words?

We contacted Edward Lengel, editor in chief of the Papers of George Washington project at the University of Virginia. He said “there is no evidence that Washington ever wrote or said these words, or any like them.” Lengel cautioned that it’s impossible to prove a negative, but he added that he’s “as certain as he can be” that the quote did not originate from George Washington.

This is not the first time a similar claim has popped onto our radar screen.

In December 2012, PolitiFact Texas rated False a claim made two days after the Newtown elementary school shooting. When U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, a Texas Republican, appeared on Fox News Sunday, he was asked why he believed ordinary Americans should be able to buy semi-automatic weapons designed for military use. Gohmert answered in part, “For the reason George Washington said a free people should be an armed people. It ensures against the tyranny of the government.”

PolitiFact Texas contacted Gohmert’s office to seek details on the Washington quotation but didn’t hear back.

The closest statement they could find was one Washington made in his first State of the Union address on Jan. 8, 1790: “A free people ought not only to be armed, but disciplined.”

The academic consensus is that Washington was referring to a trained militia to defend the new nation, rather than anticipating citizens seeking to head off perceived governmental tyranny.

Ron Chernow, whose Washington: A Life won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for biography, told PolitiFact Texas that Washington was “talking about national defense policy, not individuals arming themselves, and the need for national self-sufficiency in creating military supplies.”

Some post-Revolutionary lawmakers did expect citizens to own firearms, but Washington does not appear to have been among them, experts said.

“The idea of resistance to tyranny being dependent on a nation of gun-wielding individuals acting at their own behest or even on local initiative would have been anathema to Washington,” Lengel told PolitiFact Texas.

Yes, that’s right.  Per “academic consensus,” the very man to whom the continental congress turned to lead the effort to wage war on their own government was opposed to the very idea of waging war on your own government.  You simply cannot make this kind of thing up.

Let’s forget about a singular quote that may or may not have been properly attributed to Washington.  That clouds the issue, and it allows Politifact to launch into a much deeper presentation for which they cited absolutely no evidence.

The private ownership of weapons was so ubiquitous in colonial America that there is no need to explain that the “militia” purchased, maintained and trained on their guns individually.  As we’ve discussed before:

In the colonies, availability of hunting and need for defense led to armament statues comparable to those of the early Saxon times. In 1623, Virginia forbade its colonists to travel unless they were “well armed”; in 1631 it required colonists to engage in target practice on Sunday and to “bring their peeces to church.” In 1658 it required every householder to have a functioning firearm within his house and in 1673 its laws provided that a citizen who claimed he was too poor to purchase a firearm would have one purchased for him by the government, which would then require him to pay a reasonable price when able to do so. In Massachusetts, the first session of the legislature ordered that not only freemen, but also indentured servants own firearms and in 1644 it imposed a stern 6 shilling fine upon any citizen who was not armed.

When the British government began to increase its military presence in the colonies in the mid-eighteenth century, Massachusetts responded by calling upon its citizens to arm themselves in defense. One colonial newspaper argued that it was impossible to complain that this act was illegal since they were “British subjects, to whom the privilege of possessing arms is expressly recognized by the Bill of Rights” while another argued that this “is a natural right which the people have reserved to themselves, confirmed by the Bill of Rights, to keep arms for their own defense”. The newspaper cited Blackstone’s commentaries on the laws of England, which had listed the “having and using arms for self preservation and defense” among the “absolute rights of individuals.” The colonists felt they had an absolute right at common law to own firearms.

In fact, it may properly be said that the beginnings of the American war of independence was fought over gun control imposed by the British.  As to the private ownership of weapons, it doesn’t stop with the individual colonies declaring that men should be well armed in order to travel, or that they should practice their marksmanship every Sunday.

The Mount Vernon slaves hunted and trapped animals for income, both physical and documentary evidence suggests. Within the past decade, archaeologists working in the cellar of a slave dwelling on the Mansion House Farm came across both gun flints and lead shot in a variety of sizes; remains of small mammals (rabbits, squirrels, opossums, and raccoons); and a variety of wild birds (several types of ducks, coot, grouse, partridge, and passenger pigeon). Contrary to popular belief, slaves could legally own guns under certain circumstances. A Virginia statute of 1785 forbid slaves to keep firearms unless they were either traveling with their master or had written permission from him or their employer to have a gun. Washington clearly knew about and sanctioned the keeping of guns by at least some of his slaves (although no such documents of permission appear at Mount Vernon). He even provided shot on occasion, most likely for hunting game for the Washingtons’ table or for hunting vermin, as on 19 January 1787, when slave Tom Davis received one pound of shot.

In the fall of 1792, Davis and another slave, Sambo Anderson, sold their master eleven dozen birds. Both men were well-known hunters. Davis, who regularly supplied the Mount Vernon household with fresh game, had a “great Newfoundland dog” named Gunner as his hunting companion. Ducks were extremely plentiful along the Potomac in the eighteenth century, and one shot from Davis’s “old British musket” generally brought down “as many of those delicious birds as would supply the larder for a week,” said George Washington Parke Custis, Martha Washington’s grandson. Anderson had been born in Africa and in the 1750s had been enslaved and brought to Virginia, where he became a carpenter. A vivid character, he wore gold rings in his ears and adorned his face with tribal scars and tattoos. After his manumission in 1800 under the terms of Washington’s will, Anderson supported himself by hunting wild game, which he sold to hotels and to “the most respectable families” in Alexandria, according to an 1876 correspondent to the Alexandria Gazette and Virginia Advertiser. He made enough money from this endeavor to purchase and emancipate two members of his family, William and Eliza. Sambo Anderson probably earned money from those same sources while Washington was alive.

Even Washington’s slaves owned weapons.  Do not ever trust Politifact.  And as for that matter, do not ever trust Snopes or Truth or Fiction.  Be better students that they are, and refuse to honor people who perform middle school level research with your visits or your time.  When I do, I visit these sites so you don’t have to.

Washington, like all other founders, viewed gun ownership as a right, and relied upon such ownership to prosecute the American war of independence.

Prior: Politifact Lies About The NRA

The Gun Law Is An Ass?

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 4 days ago

By now most readers are aware of the sad case of the poor New Jersey retired school teacher who faces felony charges for ownership of an antique handgun.

Gordon Van Gilder, a 72-year-old retired schoolteacher in New Jersey, faces a 10-year prison sentence for possessing an unloaded 18th-century flintlock pistol in his car.

Mr. Van Gilder, a collector of 18th-century memorabilia, said he had the gun unloaded and wrapped in a cloth in the glove compartment of his vehicle when he was pulled over in November by a Cumberland County sheriff’s deputy for a minor traffic violation, according to a video posted last week by NRA News.

After consenting to a search of his vehicle, Mr. Van Gilder said he alerted the deputy of the pistol in his glove box. The deputy let him go that night, but four police officers showed up at his home the next morning with an arrest warrant, he told NRA News.

“Beware of New Jersey. Don’t come here. Don’t live here,” Mr. Van Gilder said. “Here I am, a retired teacher coming out of his house in handcuffs, who had a flintlock pistol and now I’m charged as a felon. It’s unbelievable. It’s outrageous. It’s an insult to decent people.”

New Jersey’s gun laws explicitly include antique firearms, even though federal laws exempt them.

Evan Nappen, an attorney who specializes in gun law cases and is representing Mr. Van Gilder, says that even a plea agreement that avoids jail time but convicts Mr. Van Gilder of a felony would likely jeopardize his teacher’s pension he spent 34 years earning, Legal Insurrection reported.

Charles C. W. Cooke thinks the law is an ass.

The gun in question, Van Gilder says, “was probably made about 1765 in Belgium — for the British market.” A dealer found it in Pennsylvania, and held it for him. “I paid $800 for it. It’s a boxlock pistol, so there’s no hammer. It’s beautiful” …

The idea that he was breaking a law, Nappen concludes, “never crossed Van Gilder’s mind. It’s an antique. He had no intention of shooting it. It wasn’t loaded. There was no flint, no powder, and no ball” …

Putting to one side the myriad problems with New Jersey’s preposterously illiberal laws, Allen’s ordeal was so perplexing because it need never have been brought about in the first instance. In her case — as, now, in Van Gilder’s — the prosecuting authorities had absolute discretion. Then, as now, they did not use it. In this latest case, it seems clear that there was no need to arrest Van Gilder in the first instance, and neither was there any obvious justification for charging him. Indeed, in a reasonable state, the existence of judgment-limiting mandatory minimums would make prosecutors more likely, not less, to drop the fringe cases at the outset. But New Jersey is not a reasonable state, and its authorities are neither kind nor judicious. Rather, they are stubborn and they are zealous. There is something unutterably rotten about the Garden State these days.

Finally, NJ.com is polling folks to see what they think about it.  Many of the responses are utterly pathetic and not even worth your time.  To begin with concerning the artifact, no gunsmith worth his weight in salt would actually fire the gun.  He certainly wouldn’t do it without NDE (non destructive examination) being performed on the firearm to ensure that he didn’t destroy an actual historical artifact while he also allowed someone to be harmed in the process.  More likely, he will do an ultrasonic cleaning of the piece, and then wisely talk the owner into sitting this beautiful relic under glass.  In doing so, he will have earned his consultative fee.  The notion that this is a working firearm is ridiculous.

Second, I am indeed so very sorry for Mr. Van Gilder, and of course there is no reason he should face a felony arrest and lose of his pension.  These things are obscene and an insult to the sensibilities of peaceable and God fearing men and women.  But the notion of charging Mr. Van Gilder isn’t obscene because he owns and attempted to transport an antique relic.  They are obscene because they violate the dignity of an elderly man who has a God given right to own weapons, a right that the constitution codifies, recognizes and specifically stipulates.  “Shall not be infringed,” the wording reads.

I am sorry for Mr. Van Gilder, but I disagree with Mr. Cooke, and profoundly so.  The law isn’t an ass.  The law is words, codified morality.  The notion that we cannot legislate morality is ludicrous.  All law is legislated morality, as R. J. Rushdoony has pointed out.  This law reflects the totalitarian and collectivist morality of the Northeast, where men who spend their lives teaching the little ones lose their dignity because they have an interest in “curios and relics,” as it happens to create a nexus with gun laws of a control freak political mentality.  Make no mistake.  This isn’t about curios and relics, or even guns.  All gun control is about control.

The law isn’t an ass.  The people who made the law, and the people who voted the politicians into office, the culture that created this controlling totalitarianism, they are the true ass.  They always have been – they always will be.  “Can a leopard change its spots?”

Obama: “I Am Not Incompetent”

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 5 days ago

Obama_Responds

Eugene Volokh On Open Carry

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 5 days ago

The Washington Post:

So the Florida Court of Appeal held Wednesday in Norman v. State. It concluded that the Second Amendment applies to carrying for self-defense outside the home.

“A blanket prohibition on carrying [a] gun in public prevents a person from defending himself anywhere except inside his home,” and as such constitutes a “substantial … curtailment of the right of armed self-defense.”

… the Legislature’s discretion in this area is not limitless. For example, the [Second Circuit] in Kachalsky upheld New York’s prohibitive licensing scheme using an intermediate scrutiny analysis that gave too much deference to the legislature, without considering the fact that the licensing scheme in question rendered the right to bear arms outside the home virtually non-existent…. A right is essentially “destroyed [if the] exercise of [that] right is limited to a few people, in a few places, at a few times.”

The Legislature “has a right to prescribe a particular manner of carry, provided that it does not ‘cut[] off the exercise of the right of the citizen altogether to bear arms, or, under the color of prescribing the mode, render[] the right itself useless.’” The Legislature is permitted to regulate the manner in which arms are borne for the purpose of maintaining public peace and safety, so long as any such regulation leaves available a viable carry mode.

I think the court was quite right to recognize a right to carry guns in public for self-defense (for more on this, see here). I also think the court was right to allow the state to limit such carrying to concealed carrying, precisely because such carrying doesn’t substantially interfere with the ability to defend oneself. (That’s especially so because, if a situation arises in which a person reasonably perceives an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury, the person would be free then to display the gun in self-defense, as well as use it, if necessary.)

So let’s play a thought experiment.  Suppose rather than the rights of an “ordinary” citizen being addressed here it was the rights of law enforcement officers who may need to defend their lives.  Would Eugene have made the same argument?  Would law enforcement have stood for being told they must carry concealed?  Would any court in the land have dared to force LEOs to carry concealed?  Do you think law enforcement would make the argument that drawing from a concealed carry position (IWB covered by clothing or perhaps ankle carry rig) might endanger their lives more than if they have the weapon ready from open carry due to response time?

Remember under Tennessee versus Garner LEOs can use their weapons for the very same reason we can use ours, i.e., for self defense or the defense of the life of someone else (or to prevent assault or bodily injury), and for no other reason(s).  So then how are we any different than LEOs, and why should such requirements be placed on us if they are not placed on LEOs?  How is it the right decision by the court to uphold a law that treats us differently?

Surely Eugene knows as much about Tennessee versus Garner (and its follow-on cases) as we do.  Does Eugene have an answer for why it’s okay for the court to treat us differently?  Has Eugene thought through this clearly enough yet?

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 5 days ago

Kurt Hofmann:

More fundamental, of course, is the fact that the very reason that for the citizenry to be free, we must have a right to keep and bear arms (not, readers will note, a “right to keep and bear sporting goods”) that shall not be infringed, is that we must have access to weapons with which we can pose a credible threat to the government’s enforcers, if that government makes such action necessary. The M855 rounds are a part of that credible threat–and that is undoubtedly why this administration is trying to neutralize it.

It’s always good to hear truth-telling.  Kurt’s comment that we must have access to weapons with which we can pose a credible threat to the government’s enforcers, if that government makes such action necessary” exactly captures the intent of the second amendment and the experience of the founders.

David Codrea:

Per Denise Brown of ATF Enforcement Programs and Services in this afternoon’s telephone conversation, this will “not actually be a [regulatory] change, more of a policy along those lines.” Brown said the framework document is a notice only, and will therefore not be published in the Federal Register, characterizing the document’s intent as “information gathering” in order to collect technical information, which could affect the Bureau’s final determination.

How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?  It sounds as if the ATF thinks they have found a legal (or pseudo-legal) way around following the rules.  This is what your tax dollars do when they hire lawyers for the DoJ.  Yea, those dollars.  Those hard earned dollars you make with blood, sweat and tears, those dollars that cause gray hair after so many years of fighting the system, or the ground, or those machines.  Those dollars taken from you by the power of a badge and gun.

Mike Vanderboegh:

The trick is how do we maintain our rights when all the branches of government in a given state — the legislative, judicial and executive backed up by their willing handmaidens in the press (try looking in a mirror) — are in the hands of people whom the Founders would deem “domestic enemies of the Constitution.”  The residents of the aforementioned states have answered that question by refusing to comply and daring the “authorities” to do anything about it.

Refusing to comply and daring the authorities to do anything about it.  It really does point to a problem of courage on the part of the authorities, doesn’t it?

ABC7Chicago:

A law enforcement officer was injured when his gun accidentally discharged at the Cook County Courthouse in Bridgeview. No one else was hurt.

The officer was transported by ambulance with a gunshot wound to his leg from the courthouse at 10220 S. 76th Avenue shortly before 10 a.m., according to the Cook County Sheriff’s Department. The officer is expected to be OK. No one else was injured.

Earlier Wednesday morning, an alarm at the courthouse malfunctioned, forcing an evacuation of the building. The officer was retrieving a gun from a locker it went off.

I just can’t tell you how many times that has happened to me.

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Houston Police Union Mocks Open Carry

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

Just not open carry for cops.  Raw Story:

A Texas police chief belittled an open carry activist who claimed there was an easy way to determine who was a “bad guy” with a gun.

Chris Hall spoke out last month during a rally at the statehouse organized by Come and Take It – Texas, saying there’s little reason to fear someone openly carrying a gun around in public.

“The easiest way to find out if it’s a bad guy is which direction it’s pointed,” said Hall, who was carrying a rifle over his shoulder at the time. “If it’s pointed at you, they’re a bad guy. If it’s not pointed at you, don’t worry about it.”

But Ray Hunt, president of the Houston Police Officer’s Union, dismissed the pro-gun activist’s comments as ridiculous.

“That person’s never been a police officer and never been shot at,” Hunt said. “That’s what I would have to say to that person.”

[ … ]
Hunt admitted that concealed carry did not create some of the problems that police feared, and he said officers would adjust if open carry is passed.

“It clearly is going to make our job different and more difficult, but not something that we can’t live with,” he said.

Houston’s police chief said open carry would make police work even more dangerous.

“As a police chief trying to keep two and a half million people safe, I’m just opposed to inserting more guns into a situation that I feel like could cause more harm,” said Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland.

Hunt is lying and he knows it.  Nothing about open carry will make his job more difficult.  It many ways it might be easier.

As for the Houston Police Chief, he has his own problems that should occupy his attention rather than allowing progressive political causes like gun control to consume him.

“A Houston Police Department officer has been relieved of duty after being charged with allegedly stealing $60 worth of ammunition from an outdoors store.  Stephen Sargent, 26, has been on the force for two months and is still considered a probationary officer. HPD will decide what disciplinary action to take after an internal affairs investiagtion can be completed, officials said.”

“Former Houston Police officer Robert Manzanales is charged with tampering with a governmental record – a felony. He was allegedly part of a scheme in which traffic officers listed each other as witnesses when issuing citations so they could later claim overtime while waiting at municipal court in the event they were needed to testify. He is also accused of perjury for allegedly lying on the witness stand.”

“Dothan police arrested a longtime Houston County Sheriff’s deputy over the weekend, charging him with third-degree domestic violence for a dispute with his stepchild.”

So tell me again, just who are these criminals who open carry, and who will make life more difficult for the police?

James Wesley Rawles On Unexercised Rights

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

Survival Blog:

Much like a muscle that atrophies with disuse, any right that goes unexercised for many years devolves into a privilege, and eventually can even be redefined as a crime.

Open carry was once the norm.  Concerning our founders, “Their laws about children and guns were strict: every family was required to own a gun, to carry it in public places (especially when going to church) and to train children in firearms proficiency. On the first Thanksgiving Day, in 1621, the colonists and the Indians joined together for target practice; the colonist Edward Winslow wrote back to England that “amongst other recreations we exercised our arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us.”

If we want a culture where open carry is once again the norm, the only way to effect that change is to open carry on a regular basis to make it the norm.

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