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Reader Ripcord writes:

It seems that every year, Wayne LaPierre gets up at the NRA Annual meeting and delivers a speech telling America’s gun owners that this year’s election will be the most important one for the Second Amendment in our lifetime. Like the 3:15 out of Yuma, we can almost set our clocks by it and fully expect to hear just that again this coming Spring. The problem is, this time he’s absolutely right . . .

Over seven years ago the Supreme Court handed down the Heller decision and just two years after that came McDonald. They enshrined the right to keep and bear arms as a fundamental individual right protected by the Second Amendment. And that’s as far as they went. In the post Heller/McDonald world the Court has turned down challenges to may-issue carry laws despite a split in the circuits on the right to carry. They refused to hear a mandatory storage case which, on its face, ran counter to one of the essential holdings in Heller. And this past week they turned away a challenge to a semi-auto ban, Friedman v. Highland Park.

While the Highland Park village ordinance is repugnant on its face, it’s not nearly as bad as the appellate court ruling from the Chief Judge Easterbrook:

The features prohibited by Highland Park’s ordinance were not common in 1791. Most guns available then could not fire more than one shot without being reloaded; revolvers with rotating cylinders weren’t widely available until the early 19th century. Semi‐automatic guns and large‐capacity magazines are more recent developments. Barrel shrouds,  which make guns easier to operate even if they overheat, also  are  new;  slowloading  guns  available  in  1791  did  not  overheat. And muzzle brakes, which prevent a gun’s barrel from rising in recoil, are an early 20th century innovation.

So because modern guns like the AR-15 weren’t around in 1791, they can be banned. Let that sink in for just a minute. With this ruling, and the Supreme Court’s refusal to hear Friedman, this line of thinking is now case law for the 7th Circuit. A wink and a nod to all those other courts that have been showing their disdain for Heller with their piece-by-piece dissection using intermediate scrutiny and every legal gymnastic maneuver to rule or find a carve out to Heller. Often times the courts go out of their way and look to the Heller dissent as if it were the majority opinion.

And while Justices Thomas and Scalia offered a well-reasoned dissent to the court’s decision not to hear Friedman, it is just that — a dissent.

Some may criticize the NRA for backing the case, but the truth is what other choice was there? Should they have let a broad gun ban go unanswered? Wait for a “perfect” case? The plaintiff, Dr. Friedman, is a pediatrician as well as a former Navy pilot. The NRA took a proactive, principled stance and went down swinging. Good for them.

Teddy Roosevelt may have said it best:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Defeat tastes bitter, but this isn’t the end. A few more gun ban cases are working their way through the courts. We may end up with a split circuit yet.

The gun grabbers are licking their chops and reading the tea leaves to say gun bans are OK. Now they’re coming out of the woodwork calling for confiscation, civilian disarmament and more gun bans. Good. It’s something we haven’t seen in 20 years, and it has come back – the true intentions of the gun controllers as they have let the mask slip to reveal their intentions.

Which brings us back to the opening of this article. When Wayne and Chris Cox take the stage at this year’s annual meeting, they will talk about how this is the most important election in our lifetime. And they will be right. In light of Friedman’s denial of cert we have to resort to the ballot box to protect our God-given RKBA. Winning more elections and casting more votes than the other side will stop their legislative attacks in their tracks. The cold hard fact of seeing a tally board go red on their issues and green on our issues will be the slap to the face the gun grabbers deserve.

Until SCOTUS takes up another 2A case, draws brighter lines and issues concrete holdings that bind the lower courts, we will be left to fight this fight as trench warfare in the state legislatures and city councils around the country. The propaganda war will continue on the front pages of newspapers and over the airwaves with commentators who barely know which end the bullet comes out of telling us how we need to give up this or that for the greater good of society.

Yet, the road to the Supreme Court also goes through the ballot box. The next President could have as many as three appointments to the Court. The only way to get more justices who will agree with the Thomas and Scalia dissent is to elect a Republican senate. And since Comrade Reid has invoked the nuclear option, given a Republican senate and a Republican president, our odds, while not perfect, would be substantially better at getting the gun-friendly decisions we need.

We won Heller and McDonald on 5/4 splits. The left is openly and gleefully talking about reversing them. Often times, The People of the Gun are heard to say pray for the five, as a way of ensuring this president doesn’t get the opportunity to appoint a replacement for one of the Heller five. Given Friedman, those five appears to be shaky since it only takes four justices to grant cert. The ballot box is our only hope of replacing a Ginsburg with another Alito, Scalia or Thomas.

So this is really will be the most important election in our lifetime for the Second Amendment, and just maybe for the health of our nation. Wayne is absolutely right about that. And maybe for more reasons than he wants to admit.

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  1. As soon as the election is over, watch for retirement of lefty judges, so the Traitor-in-chief can appoint more. They won’t take any chances. Any judge reaching retirement age in the next 8 years will be encouraged to step aside to protect the ‘Progressive’ path from a conservative President (should we be so lucky).

    • That probably won’t work. The president nominates Federal judges, but the Senate has to approve them. With 54 Republicans in the Senate, they can just stall until the next president is inaugurated.

      • A major natural or manmade disaster is coming to the US very soon and will be so monumental that old Barry and the clan will have to put the elections on hold for a while and to all our chagrin , most Americans will agree .
        This is a recurring nightmare I’ve been having .

        The progressive left has come so far now I can’t see them relinquishing any ground . They play like spoiled little girlie boys .

        • Yeah, I’ve heard the same thing every single election since I was a kid. The lefties said Reagan was going to suspend elections, then the conservatives said Clinton was going to do it, then the liberals had another go at it with Bush. There were probably Whigs who said the same thing about Andrew Jackson. Yet, we’ve had a presidential election every four years like clockwork.

          The people who wield the real power (hint: it ain’t Obama or Bush or whatever stooge is in the big chair) have no interest in the chaos that would be unleashed by having a president declare himself dictator-for-life. Why would they, when they will control whatever schmuck comes in next? It doesn’t matter to the real power elite if the guy in the White House is a D or an R, because the statist agenda moves forward either way.

        • The only subversion of democracy will occur at the Republican National Convention, when leaders conspire to thwart both Trump & Cruz through a BS brokering process, to get the closest thing to a Bush-clone –Rubio– at the head of the ticket.

        • The White House recently released a news blurb saying Trumps comments “disqualify him”.

          While I don’t think Trump stands a chance of clearing the primary, I found that kind of comment to be a bit disturbing. A sitting administration shouldn’t be judge of what qualifies a future one. It’s the people who choose.
          I mean, hypothetically, what happens if the new guy is someone the guy in power greatly disapproves of?
          At the least it’s divisive politics and at worse foreshadowing the intent to only turn the reigns over to like-minded people.

    • With the Republicans controlling the Senate, it won’t matter unless the Republican candidate wins. If a Justice retires after election day, Obama can nominate whomever he wants, and if the Senate Republicans stick together, refuse to confirm an Obama nominee. There’s no time frame that has to be followed, and 10 -11 weeks is the time from election to inauguration.

      Of course, we have the GOPe and RINOs like Lindsey Graham, who would happily confirm Obama’s picks, just as they have been doing for the last 7 years.

  2. Every election is the most important election. Get out, vote, spread the good word and remember that there are places in the world, or in our history, where the freedom to vote is suppressed, ignored, or bought.

  3. From the Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit decision in Parker (Parker at that stage, became Heller by the time it got to SCOTUS) upheld by SCOTUS:

    The modern handgun—and for that matter the rifle and
    long-barreled shotgun—is undoubtedly quite improved over its
    colonial-era predecessor, but it is, after all, a lineal descendant
    of that founding-era weapon, and it passes Miller’s standards.
    Pistols certainly bear “some reasonable relationship to the
    preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia.” They are
    also in “common use” today, and probably far more so than in
    1789. Nevertheless, it has been suggested by some that only
    colonial-era firearms (e.g., single-shot pistols) are covered by
    the Second Amendment. But just as the First Amendment free
    speech clause covers modern communication devices unknown
    to the founding generation, e.g., radio and television, and the
    Fourth Amendment protects telephonic conversation from a
    “search,” the Second Amendment protects the possession of the
    modern-day equivalents of the colonial pistol. See, e.g., Kyllo
    v. United States, 533 U.S. 27, 31-41 (2001) (applying Fourth
    Amendment standards to thermal imaging search).

    • Exactly.
      Chief Judge Easterbrook apparently failed to read HELLER. Justice Scalia was overly kind in describing the argument advanced by the judge as “bordering on the frivolous”. Vacuous, or just plain stupid, would have been a more fitting description.

      • I’d vote for deceptive and dishonest. He was not making a mistake, nor did he not understand. Maybe “criminal dereliction of duty”.

  4. Furthermore, building on the 7 years, we have seen an increase in the rule of man over the rule of law. Instead of equal protection, we get government as a weapon against political opponents, feelings over Constitutional rights, and demonization as a way to whip up divisions. If Hillary is rewarded for her promises to expand the rule of man over the rule of law, we enter a really dark period for all of the human race.

  5. Again; because needs must when the enemy drives, and virus protection requires staying up to date.
    If only the Victoriana loving GB NRA would learn…

  6. The tyrants in black robes eagerly accept cases to find the “right” of murdering unborn babies, the “right” of same sex marriage and the “right” of government in forcing the citizenry to buy health insurance as a constitutional right, but refuse to hear cases that clearly violate a right that is actually in the constitution.

    Thomas Jefferson said over two hundred years ago that having the USSC as the final arbiter of all that is constitutional would end up with tyrants in black robes acting tyrannically.

  7. this time he’s absolutely right

    He’s been absolutely right every time. POTUS has caused so much grief for us, all of America and the world. The NRA warned us about the disease who now occupies the White House. Even some of our own told us that Barry wasn’t coming after our guns. And when he did come after our guns, just like the NRA said he would, we found out just how right Wayne was all along.

    • Congress is at least partly to blame for allowing their prerogatives to be coopted by the executive branch.

      This has been a problem with both D and R presidencies, IMHO. Regardless of what I think of the person in the White House, personally or politically, I think there has been too much overreach permitted for too long.

      This sort of thing has oscillated back and forth before in the US, I just hope the pendulum reverses and doesn’t get stuck here.

      • Congress is at least partly to blame

        And Republicans in Congress are completely deserving of our thanks for shooting down Barry’s gun controls in the aftermath of Sandy Hook, when it took a lot of guts or a lot of commitment or both to stand up for 2A.

        • A lot of guts, a lot of commitment, and no small measure of fear of losing their next election when they sold out their constituents. Nothing motivates a politician like the threat of having to get a real job.

        • Be nice to Dems, too, Doofus couldn’t find more than a handful of votes from his own party, either. Waiting to see what is happening here and now, it got pretty quiet after he again declared war on guns, without being able to mention muslim killers.

      • It really isn’t as simple as R or D John .
        You may know this already but I feel a need to clarify for others who may not .
        All this crap is about progressive agenda , a very ancient agenda that has been called many things since the beginning of time .
        It is the concept that man can solve all problems , fix every human condition and there is no such thing as sin . Government is the new God and reliance on God is folly and non productive . There is no such thing as a fallen nature and evil is a arbitrary concept and people do bad things because they are conditioned to by circumstances beyond their control and therefore not responsible for their actions .
        There are a lot of Progressives with an R beside their name and nearly all the Dem. party has traded their soul to Progressivism as evidenced by the first Obama state of the Union address .
        Progressive theory is anti God and if left unchallenged it will subvert most everyone in it’s path .

    • +1

      Every election in my life time has been critical for the continuation of our guaranteed freedoms.

      And each new one is just a little more critical than the last one.

      Sparklefarts has done as much damage as he could and his replacement can either make it much worse or maybe roll back some of the restrictions.

      After the Patriot Act and the NDAA, I no longer put my trust in a political party because neither one of them has maintaining American freedom as their main goal.

      • Trust in political parties or not. I suspect that the party that tells me it supports my gun rights might be lying, but I know for damn sure that the party that tells me it wants to confiscate my guns is telling me the truth.

  8. Is he saying that if the revolutionary patriots had the choice between an AR-15, AK-47, CETME, FAL, or any wide variety of modern, automatic or semi-automatic rifles and a musket they wouldn’t have used them? It wasn’t a choice they used muskets, it was a matter of technology. I mean, who would use an ice box or nothing over a fridge, who would use a horse over a car, who would chop wood by hand over a gas furnace, who would use an outhouse over indoor plumbing if other factors didn’t constrain them? Virtually no one.

  9. The Supreme Court is the single greatest threat to our federal, separation-of-powers, constitutional republic. The Supreme Court does whatever it wants, and through it, 5 black-robed tyrants create law out of whole cloth from the bench – with utter impunity.

    It won’t be long – my children’s lifetime, perhaps – before the injustices inflicted upon the nation by the Supreme Court will equal or exceed those of King George enumerated in the Declaration of Independence.

    • Each generation has opportunity to fight for its liberty. Once that opportunity is squandered, the next accepts the specific losses of liberty as normal. Each successive generation begins at a greater disadvantage in this regard than the one before. Mainstream media and public school indoctrination has dramatically accelerated that process. It is my sincere hope that our generation doesn’t kick the can down the road. IMHO, it is too dangerous to punt or bunt when it comes to freedom.

  10. And gun rights will be absolutely screwed if Trump is the GOP nominee. His candidacy virtually assures a Clinton victory.

  11. Gun rights are front and center at a level that they never have been this year. It is absolutely the most important election we’ve had in a long while over gun rights.

  12. You ain’t lying, this ones the big one. also with trump threatning to go independent it’s starting to feel even more bleak to the point where the 1994 “assault weapons” ban is gonna look like a little while 🙁

  13. Not worried. The day they try to ban guns is the day 10’s of thousands of us go hunting for policians. We will win.

  14. The past few elections have been critically important and will continue to be so long as the Court remains 5-4 right now. It was thought in 2008 that the Court’s balance would change. Then it was thought definitely that it would after 2012. But now we’re pushing it in expecting the conservative justices to keep hanging on and not die or retire. And it thus far looks like Hillary will be winning the presidency as Trump will likely be the nominee.

  15. Every election is the most important ever-the enemy is always lurking to enslave us. I won’t say I never expected so many evil voices calling for violent confiscation of legal guns…these same criminals murder babies and sell their bodies-and joke about it. THIS may(I can never say will) mobilize pro-2A as never before. I know I’m voting-even though it’s pointless here in Cook co,IL(except local crap)…+1 Wayne!

  16. I thought Rand Paul was right in saying that if the Republicans keep running RINOs, they will continue to lose.
    Crash McCain and Mittens ran poor campaigns.

  17. It’s entirely possible, even likely, the Senate could go Demo. The seats in play are difficult wins.
    If you read the Lefty stuff, they’re actually more enthused about regaining the Senate than practically anything else.

  18. La Pierre is right- if not exactly for whatever reason in his rant- I stopped listening to him a long time ago, even though the NRA does good – he just turns me off, so I tune him out.

    If in NOV2016, we the voters elect HRC, who will then appoint two or more patently progtarded Justices ( and dont be deluded the left cant find the money to find enough of the Senate GOPe to be persuaded, just as the GANG of 8 were bamboozled (Rubio, you listening you young idiot? AZ voters you listening- time to put old Mumbles out to pasture), why – that will be the end of that, and your self-defense and free speech civil rights, too.

    By executive action and the toothless Roberts mushy middle of that court will damn us to hell, while the Progtards rewrite whatever else they like, from the bench.

    Gents, if we dont turn out every single possible vote to vote R, no matter how bad they stink, to defeat HRC, then we are simply done. Oh, it wont be a crisis…it will just be an acceleration of the long slow slide already begun since 2008, but it will be a decline to a level that will make the Dark Ages look like Disneyland, for our grandkids, I fear.

  19. Ok, so this is a gun blog, so I dont want to get too political here, or go all ga-ga for or against Trump, or anyone else. Most important, I dont want to give up- and even more important, say again there are things to stand up for- and if all Trump has is a brick to throw through the Left’s Overton Window, and as absolutely necessary as that is- there still has to be More. Truth. Justice. Clear and concrete objectives based on Integrity, Values, Morals that transcend left and right that represent the American Way, what works. The Constitution and BoR are a good place to refresh our understanding of that…

    Here is an interesting start to that conversation-

    I apologize and return to our normal programming- and dont forget newbs, the One Gun To Rule Them All is the G23.

  20. Hello there! This blog post couldn’t be written much better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my previous
    roommate! He continually kept talking about this. I most certainly will send this post to him.
    Fairly certain he’ll have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

  21. So because modern guns like the AR-15 weren’t around in 1791, they can be banned.

    It’s actually a lot worse than that. The judge says that guns available in 1791 can be banned. Only weapons that were “common” then, in his biased anti-gun estimation, are protected. Sure, there were repeating rifles in military service that fired from a 20-round magazine (the Girardoni in service with the Austrian Army), and the Continental Congress had itself ordered a hundred Belton flintlocks capable of firing 20 balls in a few seconds. Not to mention other examples of various repeating firearms technologies, several of which would almost certainly also have been known to the founders (such as the Puckle gun, an English revolver cannon). The gun grabbers would ban 1791 technology, only what they deem “common” enough at the time and acceptable in modern times would be allowed. I’m sure they wouldn’t want me to have an assault weapon like a modernized standard-capacity Girardoni air rifle or Kalthoff repeater (30-round magazine in the 1600s!) for home defense.

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