This is TTAG’s weekly roundup of legal and legislative news affecting guns, the gun business and gun owners’ rights. For another look at the topics discussed here, check out this week in gun rights at FPC.
Floyd family files request for United Nations to disarm the police
The family of George Floyd has filed a petition to the United Nations requesting that they impose a series of reforms including the abolishment of qualified immunity, mandatory usage of body cameras, halting the transfer of military hardware to police forces, and establishing an independent investigatory committee to address claims of excessive force and extrajudicial killings by police officers.
The letter, addressed to the UN Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent, implies that the government has prioritized protection of Second Amendment rights over the lives of African Americans.
I’m more than sympathetic to the issue of police brutality. It’s a horrifying national embarrassment. I do think it’s important to point out a couple things. First, while the idea of abolishing qualified immunity, demilitarizing police forces, and requiring enhanced oversight are worthwhile, they simply can’t be done by the UN because it lacks the authority to regulate the conduct of the several states and the federal government. Any assertion of control would be a violation of both our Constitution and national sovereignty.
Second, if we’ve learned anything about the police and the government over the last couple weeks, it’s that some of them don’t respect the lives of civilians and absolutely don’t respect Second Amendment rights, even if President Trump may pay lip service for whatever purposes.
Instead of appealing to yet another organization like the UN, the Floyd family and their supporters should instead focus on direct, domestic action like lobbying and pushing out the politicians and institutional leaders who are part of the problem.
Likewise, members of minority communities should conspicuously embrace the Second Amendment. We’ve all learned that we can’t rely on the state to protect us, especially in uncertain times.
Federal court orders Connecticut to resume firearms licensing
One thing that’s become painfully obvious is that politicians love using a crisis as an excuse to suspend the right to buy firearms. And when they can’t get the job done by shutting down gun stores, they find more insidious ways to accomplish their goals.
That was the case in Connecticut, where Governor Ned Lamont issued an executive order allowing the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (that’s a mouthful) to suspend fingerprinting. That doesn’t sound like a big deal until you realize that in Connecticut, fingerprints have to be submitted in order to conduct background checks for handgun permits and certificates.
Fortunately for the citizens of Connecticut, a federal judge has issued a preliminary injunction, requiring the state to resume collection of fingerprints at least until the lawsuit concludes.
Maryland County school district considers dismantling school resource officer program
School resource officers: how do they work? According to Belinda Queen of the Prince George’s County School Board, they pretty much don’t.
On Monday evening, a proposal was brought before the board to dismantle the program which provides school resource officers to protect students in “gun free” zone schools. Instead the board will earmark the $5 million formerly used for armed protection to social workers and mental health professionals.
This is a complicated issue. We know the police don’t have an affirmative duty to protect us, and we also know their presence in schools allegedly worsens an awful school-to-prison pipeline. But leaving students totally unprotected in the case of a campus attack seems less than wise.
New York politicians want doctors to decide whether or not you can have a gun
New York is one of the worst states in the union when it comes to being able to exercise your Second Amendment rights. Now they want to put up still more barriers to the right to keep and bear arms. New York Senate Bill S7065, sponsored by James Sanders Jr. (D-10th) would amend the state’s mental hygiene law to have doctors decide whether or not you should have the ability to own a firearm.
Specifically, the state would set up a division to process for mental health evaluations of anyone wanting to purchase a pistol, rifle, or shotgun. It would also standardize procedures for conducting these examinations, including the development of a form to be used by doctors.
New York putting up yet another barrier to the free exercise of a constitutional right shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. This is the same state where having too many speeding tickets can have you declared a “scofflaw,” which is a basis for denying your gun permit application.
Passing this law is a dodge. Many doctors are anti-gun, so of course they’re likely to find that you’re unsuitable. The point is that the state will be able to rely on the doctor’s findings as a fig leaf to be able to do what they want to do in the first place – ban you from buying a firearm.
Wild, Wild Washington: Seattle warlord and Spokane militia guarding downtown businesses
You’ve surely heard about Seattle, where what seem to be anarcho-communists have established an “autonomous zone,” excluding the police from accessing about six city blocks. Their plan was simple; live communally while relying on assistance from the outside in the form of food, water, and other supplies.
Raz, a local rapper known for handing out his mix-tapes in his pre-war days, has emerged as a leader of the camp. He’s being accused of “warlording.” What a timeline we live in.
In contrast, farther to the east, things in Spokane are comparatively tame. There, armed militia groups have been protecting stores from looting. The store owners and some elected officials, fascinatingly, have expressed “concern” about the presence of the militiamen.
Can’t stop the signal, eh?
After Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued his massive gun ban list, it should come as no surprise that a black market for firearms quickly established itself in Canada. It’s almost like this concept could have been gleaned from other North American bans, like Prohibition and the War on Drugs. Nonetheless, the Winnipeg police were baffled to find a spooky ghost gun made with a 3D printer.
Inspector Max Wadell said of the phantasmagorical AR “I can only think of one reason where anyone would manufacture a firearm that cannot be registered or detected and that is to circumvent the laws that are in place to protect us all.”
Well, Inspector, you’re partially correct. By banning all of those guns, you forced people who would’ve purchased firearms legally to find an alternative means of acquisition, but I’ve got to disagree with the rest of your statement.
There’s nothing “undetectable” about those guns, and the laws you had on the books didn’t stop the tragedy that precipitated this massive gun grab. It’s more than a little unfair to place the blame on those who simply want to possess guns.