Feeding the Troll(s) – The Conclusion

If you waded through yesterday’s troll smorgasbord, you’ll remember that I promised to lay out my (brief) plan to solve the whole gun violence thing. Or a good portion of it, anyway. This post isn’t as long as yesterday’s. No really. The solution really is pretty quick and easy (for my tongue in cheek answer see this essay). But for the real stuff, read on…

It all boils down to four points:

  1. End the War on Some Drugs
  2. Release non-violent drug offenders (up to 70% of our prison population by some counts) and
  3. Keep violent offenders locked up
  4. Allow everyone who is not in prison or a locked mental facility to exercise their “natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil, and Constitutional right” to own and carry the weapon of their choice. [1]

1) You can see my essay regarding the War on Some Drugs here. Briefly, crime went down when Prohibition was repealed, crime will go down when the War on Some Drugs is ended. In addition, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 17 2007 report Homicide trends in the United States, 76.5% of homicide victims were male and 90.2% of their homicides were drug related. Just as happened when Prohibition was repealed, if drugs were legalized you wouldn’t have turf wars or any of that folderol, so we could probably count on eliminating about 69% of our homicides right off the bat. That would mean a reduction in our homicide rate to about 1.9 per 100,000 putting us only about 30% above the U.K. (which seems to be the antis ‘gold standard’).

2&3) Since a small percentage of repeat offenders are responsible for significant numbers of crimes, keeping them in prison will reduce crime, thereby reducing “gun violence.”

4) Since an exhaustive, thoroughly researched, multiple-repeated, peer-reviewed study shows that More Guns = Less Crime, allowing people to carry is the safest, most effective self-defense tool in existence and will, obviously, reduce crime.

There. Solved.

I think that takes care of the misunderstood portion of this two-part rant. But before we go, let’s address mike’s (sarcastic) take on gun-owner persecution. You know, it’s not for nothing that gun rights activist John Aquilino is widely quoted as (provocatively) saying: “Gun owners are the new niggers . . . of society”. Look at the discrimination (and outright threats and violence) legal gun-owners often face. For instance:

In Philadelphia open carrier Mark Fiorino was proned out with a gun pointed to his head and detained for 40 minutes before being released (with a few pungent epithets from the officers involved). You might imagine that after treating a perfectly law-abiding person like this, the city might apologize for the ignorance of their officers. They didn’t. Did the city promise to hold training so that all officers would be aware that open carry is completely within the law? Nope. Police spokesman Lt. Raymond Evers warned open carriers that they would be “inconvenienced” if they came to the city. In this case inconvenienced means made to lay face-down on the pavement (probably with guns pointed at them) until officers felt safe. Just as an aside, can you imagine the storm of outrage that would descend if people of color were told that they would be similarly inconvenienced if they visited Philly?

In Canton Ohio, William E. Bartlett was threatened with death by Patrolman Daniel Harless during a traffic stop after Bill told Dan, as required by Ohio law, that Bill had a permit to carry and had a weapon on him.

In East Palo Alto CA, Detective Rod Tuason mocked open carry activists and basically said he would happily shoot them and enjoy his “two weeks off.”

In Albany, NY a woman who was flying to Utah (I believe, I can’t find a link to the story at the moment) drove from her home in Vermont to the Albany airport and attempted to check her unloaded, locked pistol with her luggage. She was arrested (again, in complete defiance of the F.O.P.A.) and charged with unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon.

In Portland, OR three men were pulled from their vehicle, assaulted, handcuffed and held for 40 minutes because one of them was carrying and, as required by law, informed the officers “I’m a registered carrier, and here’s my license and insurance.”

In Bloomington MN, I was open carrying at a gem and lapidary wholesale show (in a bright red T-shirt that said SECURITY in two-inch high letters on the front and back). Two city cops stopped me to check my permit and when they were done the senior one said that he hoped I realized that if they got a robbery call to that location, “you’ll be the first person we shoot.”

Shaun Kranish of Illinois has had his own share of “moments of unusual interest” (how a friend of mine used to refer to my interactions with various law enforcement officials):

A firm advocate of not only concealed but also open carry from the beginning, Shaun used a fully enclosed and highly-secure Blackhawk holster to ‘container carry’ in Illinois.  During a visit to Cherry Vale Mall in Cherry Valley, IL, security guards accosted Shaun and his wife placing them both under false arrest.  Shaun was charged with Unlawful Use of Weapons, the most severe grade of misdemeanor charges.  This was upped to a felony – Aggravated Unlawful Use of Weapons – within two weeks.  Shaun spent the next 13 months fighting these charges with his attorney, and even representing himself some of the time by speaking in court and conducting hearings, until the charges were successfully dismissed by Judge Steven Vecchio.

Shaun was also arrested on the campus of his college for wearing an empty holster and I-Carry.org jacket when he went to see the college president to discuss the college’s weapons policy. The disorderly conduct charges were quickly dropped and Shaun won his subsequent civil rights lawsuit against the college.

Anyone remember the kerfuffle last year when Arizona passed their immigration law? Liberals and ACLU types were up in arms about the Nazi style “show your papers” law, with some calling it a “Gestapo law.” Oddly enough, I don’t remember any such outrage to various carry-laws across the country which require permit-holders to produce “their papers” upon demand. Nor is there any protest about states like Ohio, Michigan, North Carolina and South Carolina (among others), which require permit holders to immediately inform officers that they have a permit and are carrying. This can get especially interesting when you have cops telling you that if you don’t shut-up they will shoot you.

How about the shrill shrieks of anguish whenever it is suggested that people have to show a picture ID in order to vote? Claims abound that such laws will disenfranchise the poor and handicap minorities who may be reluctant to interact with state officials. When the subject is a permit to carry (concealed or not) however, suddenly it’s no problem to discriminate against the poor and minorities. And while it’s true that more and more states are passing “shall-issue” permit laws, over a quarter of the country’s population still lives in “may-issue” states. How do you reconcile that with the Supreme Court’s decision in Staub v. City of Baxley which stated:

It is settled by a long line of recent decisions of this Court that an ordinance which, like this one, makes the peaceful enjoyment of freedoms which the Constitution guarantees contingent upon the uncontrolled will of an official—as by requiring a permit or license which may be granted or withheld in the discretion of such official—is an unconstitutional censorship or prior restraint upon the enjoyment of those freedoms.

Furthermore, how do you reconcile charging fees for permits when SCOTUS ruled in Murdock v. Pennsylvania:

A state may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right granted by the federal constitution. The fact that the ordinance was imposed indiscriminately does not save it from being unconstitutional.

You cannot reconcile either of these without admitting that the Second Amendment is treated as the bastard child of the Bill of Rights and that gun-owners are routinely “persecuted and misunderstood.”

 


[1] L. Neil Smith, Letter to a Liberal Colleague

 

comments

  1. avatar Nick Leghorn says:

    Gun Owners for the LEgalization of Marijuana.

    GOLEM.

    I’ll go register the domain name right now.

    1. avatar O.N. says:

      “GOLEM” implies mindless servitude. Whose mouth are you putting the paper scrap in?

    2. avatar CarlosT says:

      Plus, when spoken, a lot of people will think Gollum, which will make people think we’re fondling our pistols and muttering “our precioussss….”

      1. avatar Derek says:

        Wait… we’re not supposed to be doing that?

        1. avatar CarlosT says:

          Well, not in public, anyway.

  2. avatar Derek says:

    “…if drugs were legalized you wouldn’t have turf wars or any of that folderol, so we could probably count on eliminating about 69% of our homicides right off the bat.” – Eh… I honestly think that “turf war” types will find one reason or another to kill eachother.

    Other than that, you’re preachin to the quire with this one man. Also, Harless also threatened Bartlett with perpetual future harassment. Something along the lines of “I’ll put you in the system and every time I see you I’m gonna arrest you and impound your car.”

    1. avatar CarlosT says:

      “Tastes great!”
      “Less filling!”
      Bang!

  3. avatar Tio Volatito says:

    Another excellent post. In the story about the Philadelphia debacle, the police spokesman added that Fiorino “appears to be inviting trouble from the law by ‘surreptitiously’ recording his encounters with police”. To me, that stinks even more than the bogus stop.

    1. avatar HSR47 says:

      Well fear not, as Mr. Fiorino successfully defended himself in his criminal case vs Philly, and the last I heard he was working on a civil suit.

  4. avatar Greg in Allston says:

    Unfortunately, the War on Some Drugs has evolved from it’s humble Nixonian beginnings into a substantial element of our economy, with many vested interests and the accompanying power, prestige and filthy lucre that goes along with that. Those that profit most and best from the current situation will not go easily or quietly into a post-prohibition era.

    Many LEOs, policy apparatchiks, law and order pols, the “corrections” industry, all the companies that produce all of the neato ninja hardware that’s brought to bear in this Glorious Crusade to save us from ourselves will lobby hammer and tongs to not let that happen.

    1. avatar Tom says:

      Yeah, the War on Drugs is big business in many ways.

  5. avatar ST says:

    Much like with slavery, in such districts the problem is institutional. Gun control laws in places like Chicago, Washington D.C., California, and other places have been on the books for decades. Entire generations of people have been born and raised in communities that never knew about their right to keep and bear arms.A majority of people who live in ‘Gun-Free’ states literally have no concept of a civil society made up of armed private citizens. They have lived their whole lives with the motto of “If a civilian has a firearm they are a criminal”

    That sort of programming cannot be eliminated with a 30 minute PowerPoint on “citizen carry”. For what it is worth it is my observation that State and City governments (Such as Chicago where I grew up) which ignore the 2nd Amendment pretty much treat the entire Bill of Rights like toilet paper .

    “Whaddaya mean, no one can be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law?Who cares, The City needed to tow your car.”

    “So you wont grant consent for me to search your car?Fine. Looks like your tailights are dim ,we’ll need to tow and impound your vehicle for safety reasons.Of course that means an inventory( read search) of the vehicle is required ,your right against unreasonable search and seizure be damned”

    ” So you wanna have a gun in Chicago eh?Pay $700 in license and class fees , and that piece better not leave home ever.Right to keep and bear arms? Hahaha…”

  6. avatar Ralph says:

    If we want to do things the right way and have a more peaceful society, we need to legalize drugs and outlaw cops.

  7. avatar ST says:

    *Reasons why Legalization is a BAD IDEA*

    Deprived of sources for seedy drug related action movie plots Hollywood’s Movie Industry would be ruined.The combination of people being legally stoned and lack of creative material will result in a economic disaster that may only increase the world’s current debt crisis. The jury is out on whether a bailout of the studio responsible for the Harry Potter Films is likely.

    Police Departments with “Tacitcal Narcotics Units” would lose their precious drug hunting task forces and the appropriate budgets. One would suggest the money saved be redirected to the police psychology section as the stress of earning the taxpayer’s buck in Patrol like everyone else with a badge might be too much for the former tactical prima donna’s to handle.

    The DEA would have to be shut down much to the disappointment of people waiting for the inevitable sequel to a certain YouTube video depicting an Agent’s gun ‘professionalism’.

    Criminals would have to kill each other for other purposes.Deprived of a physical product to sell, criminals who wish to continue getting the hoes and staying real will need to diversify. One can only imagine the horror of gangs selling toxic off-market securities in the neighborhoods of America. Trade wars will take on a different and violent meaning in America’s inner city as children are pitched insider trading info on IPO’s and stock swaps.

    With jails being suddenly empty and deprived of small time drug offenders governments wishing to keep the cells filled will need to raise the penalties for minor violations to keep occupancy rates high enough.The thought of spending 2 years in jail for parking too close to a hydrant is unsettling but doing 10 years for Grand Theft Auto because you stole your brother’s scale model Corvette will be the real tragedy.

    Ladies and gentlemen, don’t be fooled. The price we pay for eliminating a corrupt and underground market that has killed cops and citizens alike while also bribing entire national governments is simply too high.

    Think of the Children!

    ( End sarcasm)

    1. avatar Peet says:

      You forgot the biggie: Asset forfeiture.

  8. avatar someguy says:

    Here’s another question for the trolls. The supreme court has ruled a number of times that the government (police and sheriffs) have no constitutional duty to protect individual citizens. Who, then, does that responsibility fall on? The citizens themselves. How are we to protect ourselves against those that could overpower us?

    Furthermore, the Court in DeShaney held that the government is only responsible to protect certain individuals such as incarcerated prisoners, involuntarily committed mental patients and others restrained against their will and therefore unable to protect themselves. I wonder now, if the people of Illinois would be considered restrained. Along that same line of thinking, anyone in a gun free zone should also be considered restrained from protecting themselves.

    1. avatar O.N. says:

      That, good sir, is an excellent point. +10

      1. avatar someguy says:

        Thank you kindly.

    2. avatar Ned Weatherby says:

      Good post, Someguy.

      I’ve often opined that private and public places that ban carry by citizens who are willing to defend themselves should have a compelled legal duty to protect everyone who has to disarm to go there.
      Arguably, if one can avoid one of these places, that person should choose to do so. But so-called gun-free zones like schools, where a parent may need to go to pick up a student, or a government or quasi government property like the Post Office should be held accountable for any harm that befalls any one who must disarm in order to go there and do business.

      If a compelled legal duty to protest the patrons was enacted, along with strict liability for harm to people who were disarmed in order to do business there, there would be an immediate reversal of the idiocy of compelling people do disarm for reasons like getting their driving license renewed.

  9. avatar Pete says:

    I remember reading, many years ago, that if you did not count the US murders and shootings over drug deals/drug gang turf wars/druggies killing and mugging to support their habits, etc., the US violent crime rate would be somewhere around that of Lichtenstein. Now you have confirmed it:
    “… according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 17 2007 report Homicide trends in the United States, 76.5% of homicide victims were male and 90.2% of their homicides were drug related.”

    Of course the big problem with de-criminalizing drugs is the huge jump in unemployment – all of the cops, judges, lawyers, prison guards, bankers who move drug money into Mexico, politicians who make the “war on drugs” their reason for being, the celebrity drug rehab facilities – all would be unemployed.

    Maybe that’s why the NTSB is recommending the criminalization of cell phones in vehicles. Gotta have SOMETHING to justify arresting the sheep.

    1. avatar tdiinva says:

      While there are good reasons for legalizing drugs don’t fool yourself that the murder rate would drop by 2/3. First, criminals being criminals will continue to engage in criminal activity. Did the mafia dry up and blow away after prohibition ended? Drug addicts will still need to feed their habits so unless narcotics fall under Obamacare they will still need to support a habit.

      The drug wars began as unintended consequence of breaking up organized crime. It created a vacuum that others were more than willing to fill. Like the Mafia after prohibition, these new criminal gangs will find something else to do.

      1. No, they didn’t go away. They just moved on to other prohibited vices. Gambling, prostitution and drugs.

        Anyone see a pattern here?

        1. avatar tdiinva says:

          Except that it wasn’t prohibited in Las Vegas and they still ran the show.

        2. avatar Tom says:

          Had to have a legal front somehow to pose as legit business men.

        3. avatar Tom says:

          At one time we had a demonstration at a Company Function by a card sharp who was sort of in the mob. He stated that Las Vegas was where the mobs liked to launder their money and put on a legitimate face.

        4. avatar Tom says:

          Yeah, which is why I tend to vote Libertarian. I think the whole 3 ring circus is a bunch of crap.

    2. avatar mikeb302000 says:

      ““… according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 17 2007 report Homicide trends in the United States, 76.5% of homicide victims were male and 90.2% of their homicides were drug related.””

      Great quote, Pete, too bad it’s wildly untrue.

      How about this one, “FBI statistics have shown that domestic violence has accounted for 42% of gun homicides in 2009.”

      You see, anyone can do that.

      1. avatar Bruce W. Krafft says:

        Slight (but crucial) difference between your quote and mine: I provided a link to the Bureau of Justice Statistics report from which I got those numbers. Specifically from the chart The gender distribution of homicide victims and offenders differs by type of homicide on p. 51 of the .pdf

        Which chart, BTW, states that 76.5% of homicide victims are male and (obviously) 23.5% are female. 35.2% of men were killed by someone with whom they were in an intimate relationship while 64.8% of women were victims of an intimate partner. And when you run those numbers you get . . . 42.156%. Admittedly that doesn’t break it down by murder weapon, but I think we can agree that your 42% number is valid.

        But wait! I hear you say; how can 35.2% of men be killed by a domestic partner while 90.2% of their homicides are drug related. That equals . . . umm, carry the one . . . 125.4%! Except it doesn’t, because one is counting the offender’s identity and the other is counting the underlying cause. Domestic homicides can still be drug-related after all.

        1. avatar NCG says:

          One thing to consider is that if the cops find any sort of illegal drug, even if it’s just some seeds and stems or other residue on the crime scene, they call the shooting “drug related.” It’s part of keeping the WOD going. If they find ten empty liquor bottles on the coffee table, it’s not “drug related.”

      2. avatar TSgt B says:

        mikeb – When “law enforcement” considers a pimp killing a hooker “domestic violence”; when a non-physical argument leads to a law-abiding citizens’ lawfully held firearms being confiscated based on an unsubstantiated accusation; when Obama & Co. consider a terroist attack (Fort Hood) “workplace violence”; I tend to view things with a very skeptical eye. I, for one, am not willing to sit back and watch the Constitutoin be used as Charmin.
        Take the time to research the raw data, look at the ACTUAL NUMBERS, and then try spouting your tripe.

  10. avatar CarlosT says:

    Just think, with all those paramilitary antidrug units downsizing, there’s going to be a fire sale on used M4s.

    1. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

      And vests. And sidearms. And pepper spray. We call that a “side benefit”.

      1. avatar LarryA says:

        I want one of the armored vehicles. Just right to go to the range and teach CHL class.

  11. avatar Martin Albright says:

    Bruce, you wrote:

    Furthermore, how do you reconcile charging fees for permits when SCOTUS ruled in Murdock v. Pennsylvania:

    A state may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right granted by the federal constitution. The fact that the ordinance was imposed indiscriminately does not save it from being unconstitutional.

    Didn’t you just answer your own question? The 2nd amendment guarantees you the right to own (keep and bear) arms, but not neccessarily the right to carry them concealed on your person.

    The very fact that you apply for a permit to do so is an acknowledgement of your recognition of this fact, isn’t it? After all, you don’t apply for a permit to speak freely or petition your government, do you? You don’t have to apply for a permit to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, or to not have your property taken for public use without just compensation or for your right to trial by jury, right?

    I realize I’m in the minority on this site, but I simply don’t believe that the 2nd amendment recognizes a right to carry a concealed handgun. I believe the 2nd amendment recognizes the right to own firearms but the use and carry of those firearms is still subject to regulation by the states.

    If a restriction on carry or transport was so severe as to amount to a defacto ban on firearms (for example, a law that said you could only transport a firearm if it was triple locked in an armored car with a police escort) then it would be severe enough to violate the Constitution.

    But if you believe in Federalism, shouldn’t the state have some say in regulating who may carry a firearm in public and where they may carry it? Our state legislatures aren’t despotic tyrannies, they are made up of elected representatives who are beholden to their constituents.

    If, for example, the people of New York want to have a system where the only people who have concealed carry permits are those who are “connected” to the local government establishment (my understanding of the present system in the Empire State – corrections are welcomed) then isn’t it their business?

    1. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

      “The 2nd amendment guarantees you the right to own (keep and bear) arms, but not neccessarily the right to carry them concealed on your person.”
      —–
      From Webster:
      — bear arms
      1: to carry or possess arms

      “The very fact that you apply for a permit to do so is an acknowledgement of your recognition of this fact, isn’t it?”
      —–
      I disagree. The fact that I have a permit to carry is acknowledgement of the state’s ability to make life difficult for me if I choose to bear arms without said permit. Not the same thing at all.

      “After all, you don’t apply for a permit to speak freely or petition your government, do you?”
      —–
      That is because, at present, the state does not require a permit to engage in those activities. Imagine the uproar if they did.

      “But if you believe in Federalism, shouldn’t the state have some say in regulating who may carry a firearm in public and where they may carry it?”
      —–
      Actually, no. The federalist model acknowledges a covenant binding the members of the federation. In the U.S., that covenant is our Constitution. As the Constitution is the highest law of the land, its’ words are binding upon all of the states. As SCOTUS recently affirmed, that includes the 2nd.

      “they are made up of elected representatives who are beholden to their constituents.”
      —–

      Surely you jest, sir.

    2. avatar CarlosT says:

      “Bear” means to carry, so the Second Amendment must be guaranteeing some method of carrying or other. Some would advocate that being open carry, some would advocate concealed carry. Personally, I find concealed carry more appealing. But the right guaranteed is “to keep and bear”.

      While it is true that constitutional rights are not completely unlimited, the pendulum is completely too far toward restrictions on the Second Amendment.

      Or, what Moonshine7102 said.

      1. avatar Martin Albright says:

        “Bear” means to carry, so the Second Amendment must be guaranteeing some method of carrying or other.

        I agree 100% with this. But in law, the devil’s always in the details: What does “some method” mean?

        In CA, for example, it’s perfectly legal to carry a handgun in your car – Provided that the gun is in a locked container and separated from ammo. You could say this makes the gun useless as a tool of self defense but the state could easily argue that you are still permitted to ‘bear’ your firearm, the state has simply restricted the method by which you may do it (in Colorado, by contrast, you can carry a weapon loaded, fully concealed and at the ready in your car without any sort of permit whatsoever.)

        The question of whether that restriction is so severe as to compromise the right guaranteed by the 2nd amendment will be a question for the courts.

        In practical terms, the extent to which the states may regulate or restrict the carry of firearms and still comply with the 2nd amendment has yet to be defined. It will take future court cases to work out the details, just as it has with other rights.

        Something to think about come November 6th of 2012 as the next president may be able to appoint 1 or 2 judges to the SCOTUS.

        1. avatar CarlosT says:

          Heller gives us some clues. The requirement that the gun be kept in an inoperable state was considered to violate the Second Amendment because it defeated the self defense purpose of firearms. If they rule in the that there exists a right to self defense outside the home similar to the right inside the home, then it will probably mean that a person will likely be allowed to bear an operative firearm.

          Here’s hoping, anyway.

      2. avatar tdiinva says:

        In 1789 bear meant display, i.e., open carry. If Madison wanted to give protection to concealed weapons he probably would have used carry.

        The Virginia Supreme Court has interpreted Article I,. section 13 of state Constitution, the Virginia version of the Second Amendment also written by Madison, as protecting the right to open carry but not concealed carry. We here in Virginia are strict constructionists so I believe that Second Amendment was only meant to protect the ownership and the open carrying of firearms.

        1. avatar Martin Albright says:

          I believe that Second Amendment was only meant to protect the ownership and the open carrying of firearms.

          But even then the question remains: Can the state regulate that right in any way? I believe it can and I believe the SCOTUS will hold that the state can do so.

        2. “Shall not be infringed” says otherwise: ANY restriction on the bearing of arms is an infringement upon that Right.
          Just because SCOTUS declares otherwise doesn’t make that absolute truth go away.

    3. avatar Ralph says:

      So “keep and bear” means “own but not bear?” Doesn’t “bear” mean “carry?” This is from the Heller decision: “Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.”

      I think it’s clear that “bear” means carry, and that there’s a right to carry that’s not absolute.

      It wouldn’t shock me if SCOTUS ruled that reasonable carry regulations are permissible, as it already stated in Heller. But I believe that an outright ban on carry would violate 2A.

      Still, its important to note that both Heller and McDonald were cases that centered on self-defense in the home, not on the street. SCOTUS wisely limited it’s holding in both cases to the actual issues. That’s a welcome deviation from Courts of yore like the Earl Warren Superlegislature, with its mystical emanations and penumbras. We’ll have to see whether the Court believes that an effective right of self-defense ends at a person’s front door.

      1. avatar CarlosT says:

        I got to ask Adam Winkler after a talk he gave about his book if he thought that the Supreme Court would eventually rule that a right to self defense exists outside the home and he said that he thought they probably would. We’ll have to see when a case will work its way up to them.

        1. avatar Martin Albright says:

          AFAIK all states recognize a “right to self defense.” The million $ question is still whether the state can put any restrictions on the carry of firearms (whether open or concealed) that are carried to effect such right.

          It seems to be the opinion of many on TTAG that the 2nd amendment means the right to carry a concealed firearm at any time, with no permits or restrictions whatsoever (see the frequent references to states like Arizona and Vermont having “Constitutional Carry.”)

          I agree with Ralph that a complete ban on the carrying of a loaded weapon is unlikely to pass constitutional muster, but I think it just as unlikely that a court would fail to uphold a state law that placed reasonable restrictions on “time, place and manner” as well as permit requirements, fees, background checks, etc.

        2. avatar Ralph says:

          Martin, that’s the way I see it, too. However, the real question is the standard of review that will be applied to laws that restrict carry. If it’s the “rational basis” test, then 2A has no future. If a hightened form of scrutiny is applied — which is what I expect — then gun rights will be in fairly good shape. I do not expect the Court to apply strict scrutiny, which would strike down thousands upon thousands of truly stupid laws.

        3. avatar GS650G says:

          Have you been to NJ where you are expected to flee your home if attacked there?

      2. avatar Tom says:

        So much of this stuff depends on how the Judges on the Supreme Court are packed.

    4. avatar TSgt B says:

      Martin – To be blunt, WHAT A MORONIC STATEMENT. What the Hell do you think “Bear” means? Send me your address; I’ll send you a Funk & Wagnall’s.

  12. avatar mikeb302000 says:

    I agree with ending the war on some drugs and in letting non-violent offenders out of prison. But your continued attempt to paint gun owners as the focus of persecution is laughable. You can list a dozen anecdotal examples, or a hundred, but to try an turn the tables and say liberals and gun control folks are the aggressors is ludicrous.

    The gun violence stories that appear in the main stream every day include a never-ending flood of examples of the opposite: lawful gun owners who persecute in various ways the unarmed.

    I loved the stop sign, by the way. Who do you suppose put those bullet holes there? We couldn’t know, of course, but it’s safe to say it wasn’t gun control folks and it probably wasn’t criminal gun owners either.

    1. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

      “but to try an turn the tables and say liberals and gun control folks are the aggressors is ludicrous.”
      —–
      Really? All one needs to do is visit your blog and make a pro-2A comment and they’ll see real aggression.

      “The gun violence stories that appear in the main stream every day include a never-ending flood of examples of the opposite: lawful gun owners who persecute in various ways the unarmed.”
      —–
      Examples. Lots of examples. Or admit you made it up.

      “it probably wasn’t criminal gun owners either.”
      —–
      Um, isn’t willful and malicious destruction of private property a crime? Wouldn’t that make the perpetrators criminals?

      1. avatar mikeb302000 says:

        The guys who shot up that sign are probably what I call “hidded criminals.” Have you not read my recent post about that?

        1. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

          I have. Unfortunately, your assumption that the “good guys” are a minority has no basis in fact. It is just your gut feeling; you just “know it because you know it.” That type of knowledge doesn’t even pass the rational basis test.

        2. avatar mikeb302000 says:

          All you have to do is use your head and suspend for a moment you pre-conceived biases.

          How could the group called “good guys” contain so many types of “hidden criminals” without leaving you responsible types in the minority?

        3. avatar DaveL says:

          Because their numbers don’t add up to more than 50%.

          Seriously, I’ve read the posts your referring to and was struck by how you simply pull numbers out of thin air. To think that because you can think of a large number of categories of bad gun owners somehow adds up to some specific fraction of gun owners is simply shoddy reasoning. Do you have any idea how many rare diseases there are in the world? Do you think that means most people have some rare disease of another?

          Then to make matters worse, you pretty much ignore the problem of set overlap. That’s a pretty glaring omission when the sets we’re talking about include “unapprehended criminals”, “domestic abusers”, “drug addicts and alcoholics”, and “people prone to fits of rage”. Do you think substance abuse is rare among criminals? That domestic batterers hardly ever have a temper?

        4. avatar RuffRidr says:

          “Have you not read my recent post about that?”

          With the current climate on your blog I don’t know why anyone would do that. It used to be a fairly nice place for thoughtful discussions. Now it is a great place to go if you like verbal abuse and one sided moderation.

        5. avatar TSgt B says:

          Kinda like Eric Holder, Janet Reno, Bill Clinton, B. O., but they’re not so hidden, are they? How many people has Wayne LaPierre fried in Waco or murdered in Idaho, Mikey?

    2. avatar Silver says:

      Wow, someone who trusts the biased fantasy world of mainstream media. My last shred of respect for mikey’s intelligence just fluttered away.

      Because, ya know, it pays to report on stories where the unspeakably vast majority of people are safe and law-abiding, right?

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        My last shred of respect for mikey’s intelligence just fluttered away.

        Silver, you’re just a wee bit behind the curve, my man.

        1. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

          Take it easy on Silver, Ralph. He’s at the party. When he got there isn’t really an issue.

        2. avatar William says:

          Well Moonshine, I think you might be behind the curve demanding examples from mikey. We all know that he has no proof of anything of the lame comments he makes – because he never gives any.

          I keep hoping that one day he will have an epiphany and realize the reason he doesn’t give evidence is because his position is bankrupt and he converts to reality. After all the rent & taxes he must pay to live in that fantasy world where there is no crime and the cops provide all the safety we need has gotta be astronomical.

        3. avatar Moonshine7102 says:

          Every time I ask for examples and he doesn’t provide any, it just points out how untenable his position is. How does that put me “behind the curve”?

      2. avatar TSgt B says:

        Silver – I understand. I have respect for poor mikey because I respect human life, no matter how ignorant or misled.

    3. avatar Greg in Allston says:

      ” I loved the stop sign, by the way. Who do you suppose put those bullet holes there? We couldn’t know, of course, but it’s safe to say it wasn’t gun control folks and it probably wasn’t criminal gun owners either.”

      Um, vandalizing public property is indeed a criminal act, therefore whomever shot up that sign is indeed a criminal. Whether the person responsible for the vandalism was, at the time, a lawful gun owner or not really isn’t relevant. In fact, whomever shot up the sign probably broke a least several laws, depending on the jurisdiction, and in addition they are conclusively dimwitted, irresponsible jerks. No doubt you’re familiar with the type.

      1. avatar mikeb302000 says:

        That’s exactly right, Greg. Guys who go hunting with cases of beer in the trunk of the car and shoot up road signs are certainly not responsible gun owners. However, unless they’ve picked up a felony conviction along the way, they pretend to be and that’s why I call them “hidden criminals.”

        1. avatar GS650G says:

          I know many hunters and none go hunting drunk. Do you know people who do this and what have you done about it? Or is this more urban myth?

    4. avatar GS650G says:

      “The gun violence stories that appear in the main stream every day include a never-ending flood of examples of the opposite: lawful gun owners who persecute in various ways the unarmed.”

      Links? Examples? Or are you referring to the hyped up cops who threaten to execute handcuffed people?

  13. avatar Tom says:

    I think the Second Amendment really guarantees the right that the government LEOs and Military have access to and carry guns and other weapons. I mean obviously the Founding Fathers put this in with the Bill of Rights to give the government more power. See, the First Amendment guarantees the government the right to say whatever it wants and establish a state religion as well. It is the people who cannot establish a religion. So, see the Bill of Rights is really for the Government.

    1. avatar hualosman says:

      Hey Tom, trying to determine if this is sarcastic or not. I think you’re serious, but what you’re saying is so silly that I have to ask first.

      1. avatar CarlosT says:

        He’s being sarcastic. You can tell if you’ve seen his other comments on the site.

      2. avatar CarlosT says:

        He is being sarcastic. You can tell if you’ve seen his other comments on the site.

  14. avatar hualosman says:

    “Furthermore, how do you reconcile charging fees for permits when SCOTUS ruled in Murdock v. Pennsylvania:”

    In the state of Washington, there is no fee to buy a gun, even though that requires a background check. There is no fee to openly carry your cocked and locked gun. Washington has a strong tradition of open carry (relocating to TX where it’s illegal, but that’s another topic.) However, to issue a permit to carry a gun concealed, the police have to determine whether you legally can do that (WA is a “shall-issue” state, so you can as long as you’re not a crook or insane.) They incur a cost to do that, and I don’t think I should pay for someone else’s permit through higher taxes.

    1. avatar bob r says:

      In WA, the “background” check for a “permit” is *exactly* the same check performed to allow purchase of a *hand* gun (no check needed for a long gun). You already *are* paying higher taxes for background checks.

  15. avatar Roadrunner says:

    Cops who threaten innocent citizens? Sounds like these jokers have already chosen whose side they’re on, and it isn’t the good guys’.

  16. If some tax parasite told me “you’ll be the first person we shoot” in the case of them responding to a call, I’d think the proper response would be “Thanks for the warning. I’ll be watching for you.”

    1. avatar GS650G says:

      Or simply, “likewise”
      The cop basically made a terrorist threat against him, jeopardizing his precious pension in the process.

    2. avatar Mike says:

      So all public sector workers are parasites? So when your house is on fire will you say that to the firemen? If your children get educated at a school do you think the teacher is a parasite? Just as you don`t want all gunowners tagged as irresponsible (which they are not) then don`t tag all police officers as such either. This ridiculous and hyperbolic language about public sector workers is just stupid.

      1. “Taxation” is theft, so anyone who is paid by money stolen through “taxation” is receiving stolen property. No one- and I mean no one– “needs” cops. I don’t and neither do you. All they do is keep the other bad guys safe from facing the real-world consequences of their actions. Firefighters are needed, but it isn’t necessary to steal in order to finance them. There are much better ways. There is no such thing as “the public sector“- there is voluntary and there is coerced. One is right and the other is always wrong.

  17. avatar NCG says:

    This is a great piece, and I’m thrilled to see it here. I don’t think ending the WOD will be quite such a massive cure for violence in our society, but it will be a step in the right direction. Prohibition makes for a good comparison.

    It is rare that 2A folks are willing to seriously address the issue of the WOD and the Prison Industrial Complex. It doesn’t affect most middle class white guys, so it’s not on the radar, but it should be. So many right wingers complain about big government, but don’t even realize that the U.S. has more people in prison per capita than any other country on the planet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incarceration_in_the_United_States

    What says Big Government more than locking people up? Now the government claims the right to detain “terrorists,” or those who provide “material support” indefinitely without charge or trial. You might think that’s only for Muslim extremists, but just wait and see.

    This is not a partisan situation. The same state that so many on the right applaud for cracking down on “dirty hippies” will eventually take the guns from “stupid rednecks.”

    I’m not sure if I’m a stupid hippie or a dirty redneck, but I’m deeply worried.

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