1 month, 3 weeks ago
Maryland, at least in recent memory, has never been known to be a gun friendly state.
With the passage of the Maryland Gun Safety Act of 2013 in response to the tragedies of Newtown in 2012, Maryland become home to some of the harshest gun laws in the country. The law enacted bans on dozens of semi-automatic firearms, including the widely owned AR-15, and the venerable civilian model of the AK-47 and many of its variants.
The law has since been challenged a number of times, and upheld by several courts. However an appeal filed by a number of gun rights groups and businesses, as well as an amicus brief filed on behalf of the suit by twenty one state attorney generals, have forced Maryland to respond, and clarify their position on some of the most controversial firearms issues facing us today.
Filed on the day of the deadline, the “Brief of Defendants-Appellees” is now former attorney general Doug Gansler’s response to the appeal filed by the various gun control groups in the case entitled Steven V. Kolbe v. Martin O’Malley (4th Circuit Court of Appeals case number 14-1945). While the brief is seventy four pages long, and filled with cited case law and precedent, several particular passages stand out as noteworthy.
“The banned firearms [AR-15’s and AK-47’s] are not commonly used for self-defense, and more than ten rounds are rarely, if ever, required for self-defense. Thus, the banned firearms and magazines do not fall within the scope of the Second Amendment’s protection.” Pg. 24 of 74, under “Summary of Argument.”
AG Gansler goes on to argue that “The plaintiffs have failed to identify a single incident in which an individual in Maryland has used an assault weapon in self-defense, and Maryland law enforcement officers were similarly unaware of any such incident.” Pg. 36 of 74.
To clarify, the government of Maryland has just stated in an American court that semi-automatic rifles are not used for self-defense, and people do not required more than ten rounds to defend themselves, and therefore are not covered under the scope of the amendment that was put into the Constitution to ensure the people’s right to bear arms.
This statement, safely made by a man who would no longer hold the post of attorney general a week after the submission of this brief, begs the question of whether or not Maryland lawmakers and administrators watch the news, and it disregards on the basis of opinion the rulings of Heller and McDonald from the US Supreme Court.
In March of 2013, a student in New York used an AR-15 to defend himself and his roommates against a number of armed intruders..
In May of 2013 a North Carolina man used an AR-15 to defend himself against an early morning home invader.
In April of 2013 a gas station attendant and Iraq War veteran used an AR-15 in self-defense during an attempted robbery.
In January of 2014 a homeowner in Florida used an AK-47 to defend himself against three armed home invaders .
These stories exist and are not that uncommon, common enough for a cursory search by AG Gansler or his people to find out that while he may not be aware of AR-15’s being used for self-defense in Maryland, they certainly are being used in other states.
The author missed perhaps the most striking instance of self defense with an AR-15 (with multiple magazines), namely the example of Mr. Stephen Bayezes. Furthermore, it’s obvious that the Maryland attorney general doesn’t care about consistency or correspondence with reality. The Supreme Court has found in Tennessee versus Garner that law enforcement officers can only use a weapon in the same case that civilians can, i.e., self defense. Yet the attorney general won’t argue that the police should have limited capacity magazines and no patrol rifles. That’s because they don’t really believe the things they are saying.
But the main problem with both the attorney general’s brief and this short analysis at CDN is that the second amendment has nothing whatsoever to do with self defense. The best way to explain it for the attorney general’s office is this. The second amendment doesn’t have to be invoked until the legislature passes totalitarian bills like this one, the governor signs these totalitarian bills into law, sniveling lackey attorneys write horrible briefs for the court to read, and awful judges accept them rather than hold the attorneys in contempt of court for submitting crap to the court docket.
The civilians have a remedy for such meddling foolishness on the part of the elite. It’s called the second amendment, and the criminals upon which it is supposed to be used and to whom it applies are in government. The constitution is a covenant – which includes both promises and consequences. For whatever reason, the folks in Maryland haven’t seen fit to invoke this part of the governmental covenant yet, but no one can promise this will continue.