Tag Archives: 2nd Amendment

Citizens Resist Boulder’s Gun Registry

Good for them. Now they need to vote the fascists who passed this ordinance out of office.

BOULDER, Colorado — Boulder’s newly enacted “assault weapons” ban is meeting with stiff resistance from its “gun-toting hippies,” staunch liberals who also happen to be devoted firearms owners.

Only 342 “assault weapons,” or semiautomatic rifles, were certified by Boulder police before the Dec. 31 deadline, meaning there could be thousands of residents in the scenic university town of 107,000 in violation of the sweeping gun-control ordinance.

“I would say the majority of people I’ve talked to just aren’t complying because most people see this as a registry,” said Lesley Hollywood, executive director of the Colorado Second Amendment group Rally for Our Rights. “Boulder actually has a very strong firearms community.”

The ordinance, approved by the city council unanimously, banned the possession and sale of “assault weapons,” defined as semiautomatic rifles with a pistol grip, folding stock, or ability to accept a detachable magazine. Semiautomatic pistols and shotguns are also included.

Current owners were given until the end of the year to choose one of two options: Get rid of their semiautomatics by moving them out of town, disabling them, or turning them over to police — or apply for a certificate with the Boulder Police Department, a process that includes a firearm inspection, background check and $20 fee.

Boulder Moves to Criminalize Bedrock Civil Right

This is a tyrannical attack on civil liberties by American fascists.

The American Civil Liberties Union came to the First Amendment defense of neo-Nazis in Skokie, Illinois. This is worth celebrating, especially today. Lawyers, many Jewish, fought for the rights of repugnant people, many of whom would like to see all Jews dead. Offended supporters of the ACLU left in droves. But the ACLU adhered to principle because … the end doesn’t justify the means.

Progressives have not just rejected that proud tradition, they have remade it into the ugly opposite — the end justifies all: Coercing speech with speech codes and forcing cake bakers to create statements against their core religious beliefs; social justice warfare and identity politics; the nanny state banning everything from plastic straws to tobacco products; and forcing private health insurance products at gun-point.

Progressives wield intolerance like the weapon it is. But are they kidding us or themselves when they smugly assert their tolerance? Do they believe their “Celebrate Diversity” bumper stickers, blind to the hypocrisy?

I find myself thinking about this as I am only days away from becoming a criminal in my tolerant hometown of Boulder. Boulder, which did so much to promote the civil rights of the LGBT community in decades past, when alternative lifestyles were misunderstood and feared, is now leading the charge against people like me whose lifestyle is misunderstood and feared.

I remember a time when, for public safety of course, some conservatives wanted AIDS patients to self-identify, to present themselves to the governmental authority, and be counted. There was an epidemic erupting after all, and “something had to be done.”

In Boulder, if your core beliefs include dressing as the opposite gender or following the teachings of the Koran our city government will bend over backwards to protect you from those who wish to separate you from your community. You’d never be forced to self-identify to government authorities, to submit to inspection, to be registered and made to pay fees to keep your core beliefs.

My strong belief in my Second Amendment rights is core to who I am. I know that is not understood by many today, however I am not asking to be understood. I’m asking to be left alone.

Trump Bans Bump Stocks

Banning these won’t stop a single killing. It’s stupid and useless.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration Tuesday banned bump stocks, the firearm attachments that allow semi-automatic weapons to fire like machine guns and were used during the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

The regulation gives gun owners until late March to turn in or destroy the devices. After that, it will be illegal to possess them under the same federal laws that prohibit machine guns.

I also believe that implementing the law in this fashion would be a violation of the 5th Amendment: “…nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”

On guns, taxation, and tyranny

Here is my column that ran in the Washington County Daily News yesterday.

Governor Elect Tony Evers has begun to select his staff and he is choosing people from the far Left of the political spectrum. This indicates that Evers does not have any intention of compromising with the Republican-led legislature. Evers plans to govern from and for the radical Leftist base that elected him. Radical Leftist doctrine dictates that Evers must seek to restrict gun rights and raise taxes. Wisconsin made a lot of progress on both of those issues under Governor Scott Walker, so it is a good time to go back to basics and remember why gun rights and lower taxes are important.

When the Founders of our great nation enshrined the protection of the individual right to keep and bear arms in the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution, they did so for a single reason: to preserve the ability of the people to throw off a government that has become despotic.

When the Bill of Rights was written, the American experiment in self-governance was still in its infancy. The soldiers’ wounds were still healing from the long war of secession from the Great Britain and the dead were still being mourned by their families. Newly minted Americans had paid a heavy price to throw off one despotic government and knew that it would take just as much blood if they had to do it again.

The Right to Keep and Bear Arms does not exist for the purpose of hunting, shooting sports, or even self-defense. It exists, as the Declaration of Independence says, so that, “when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government.” Throwing off a government requires an armed populace, which is why every tyrannical regime in the history of humankind has disarmed its citizens.

Americans are free because they are armed, and they are armed because they are free.

One of the principal powers granted to any government is the power to tax. At its best, a good government will collect taxes from the citizenry and use it for things that are for the general good, and for which the private sector is ill-equipped to do. The obvious things that fit this kinds of use of tax dollars are the military, law enforcement, large infrastructure needs, border enforcement, etc. At its worst, a bad government will collect taxes from the citizenry and use them to enrich favored people, oppress other people, or just waste the tax money. Welfare, corporate cronyism, wasteful government spending, etc. are examples of bad governance.

A totalitarian government can be a good government, but it is illegitimate without the consent of the governed. Conversely, a representative government can be a bad government when a tyranny of the majority fleeces a minority for its own gain.

In a totalitarian government, the power to tax is absolute and people must pay what the autocrat demands, or suffer consequences ranging from confiscation to imprisonment to death. In a representative government, the only difference is that it is not a single autocrat demanding the tax, but the majority of citizens. The consequences of refusing to pay a tax in a representative government is the same as in a totalitarian government.

Governments, whether totalitarian or representative, are the only entity in a civil society with the legal power to commit violence. That violence is directed against enemies of the nation in the form of a military, and it is directed against citizens of the nation who disobey the laws set forth by the government. The power of government is based on applied violence.

Oppressive taxes are not only a drain on our economy and fuel for bad government, but it siphons the ability of individuals to pursue their own happiness. Every dollar a government spends is a dollar that was taken from someone who can no longer use it for their own needs and wants.

Over the next several years, we can expect the Evers Administration to make a strong push to restrict gun rights and raise taxes. State legislators and the citizens of Wisconsin must see through the toxic rhetorical gas and fight for principles of more gun rights and less taxes.

Federal Government Close to Banning Bump Stocks

Ugh.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday his administration is just a few weeks away from finalizing a regulation that would ban so-called bump stocks, devices that allow semi-automatic weapons to fire like machine guns.

“We’re knocking out bump stocks,” Trump said at a White House news conference. “We’re in the final two or three weeks, and I’ll be able to write out bump stocks.”

[…]

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in March the Justice Department was proposing a rule that would effectively ban the devices. In February, Trump had signed a memorandum directing the department to make the regulatory change.

You lefties may like this, but I don’t. I agree that banning bump stocks may fall within the realm of a reasonable restriction of the 2nd Amendment, but there is a high standard for when we decide to restrict Constitutionally-protected rights. In this case, bump stocks might have contributed to a greater death toll in one mass shooting. Might. That doesn’t meet the standard for me.

And no, it’s not about whether or not bump stocks are necessary, useful, or important. The burden is on the government to prove that there is a compelling public interest to infringe on our rights. If this involved any other right, we would expect no less.

Furthermore, if we are going to impose an additional restriction on the 2nd Amendment, it should, at the very least, go through the legislative process so that the duly-elected representatives of the people can have a say. An arbitrary infringement of the 2nd Amendment by Executive fiat is unacceptable.

AMA Transitions to Political Organization

Yeah…. no

CHICAGO (AP) — With frustration mounting over lawmakers’ inaction on gun control, the American Medical Association on Tuesday pressed for a ban on assault weapons and came out against arming teachers as a way to fight what it calls a public health crisis.

At its annual policymaking meeting, the nation’s largest physicians group bowed to unprecedented demands from doctor-members to take a stronger stand on gun violence — a problem the organizations says is as menacing as a lethal infectious disease.

The action comes against a backdrop of recurrent school shootings, everyday street violence in the nation’s inner cities, and rising U.S. suicide rates.

Deerfield Ramps up for Gun Confiscations

Remember little stories like this when your neighborhood anti-2nd Amendment zealot says stupid stuff like, “we don’t want to take your guns” or “we just want sensible gun control.” Yes they do, and no they don’t.

The ordinance enacted April 2 by the Deerfield Village Board gives residents until June 13 to turn in any guns that fit the village’s definition of assault weapons, remove them from the village or modify the guns so they’re no longer considered assault weapons. The ordinance empowers the town’s police chief to confiscate the assault weapons of anyone charged under the ordinance.

Owners found in violation can be fined up to $1,000 a day, according to the ordinance.

[…]

In the ordinance, the definition of an assault weapon includes, among others, semiautomatic rifles that have a fixed magazine with a capacity to accept more than 10 rounds of ammunition; shotguns with a revolving cylinder; and semiautomatic pistols and rifles that can accept large-capacity magazines and possess one of a list of other features. Among the dozens of specific models cited are the AR-15, AK-47 and Uzi, according to the ordinance.

Graduate Protests Suppression of 2nd Amendment Rights on Campus

Good for her.

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Kaitlin Bennett graduated from Kent State University in Ohio with a degree in biology.

The following day, the 22-year-old returned to the campus with an AR-10 semi-automatic rifle strapped to her back and posed for photographs while holding a graduation cap emblazoned with the words “come and take it”.

Bennett, who later posted the photographs on Twitter, says she was protesting against a university policy that prohibited students, professors and employees from carrying “lethal weapons” on campus – but allows “guests” to possess them on school grounds (but not in buildings).

She noted that Kent State was the location where “four unarmed students were shot and killed by the government” – a reference to the 1970 incident where soldiers clashed with Vietnam War protesters, firing shots that hit 13 protesters and bystanders.

Dick’s Sporting Goods Joins Anti-2nd Amendment Activists

See ya.

Dick’s Sporting Goods has reportedly retained several lobbyists to urge lawmakers to take action on gun control, months after restricting gun sales in its stores.

The sporting-goods chain is working with three lobbyists from the Glover Park Group to take on the topic, Bloomberg reported Thursday, citing a disclosure form filed late last month.

The move comes after Dick’s announced in the wake of the mass shooting at a Parkland, Fla., high school in February that it would stop selling assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Pro-Gun Students Walk Out in Protest

While I appreciate their effort to answer the anti-gun protests of last month, they should still stay in school.

(CNN)Some students who support gun rights walked out of school on Wednesday in a coordinated event to “Stand for the Second.”

Lane Cooper, 16, is an 11th-grade student in the Schoharie Central School District in New York, and he was one of those who walked out of class.
He was part of a group of 22 students at his school Wednesday morning who recited the Pledge of Allegiance, held pro-Second Amendment signs, and talked about how the Second Amendment was about defending against tyrannical government or any other threats.
“I do think there are way too many gun control laws, especially in New York where I am,” he said.

People Seek Ways to Preserve Civil Rights

It isn’t surprising that people organize to protect their rights when mobs of fascists seek to curtail them.

The student March for Our Lives scheduled for March 24 in the nation’s capital might well be the largest demonstration for gun control ever, as its organizers predict, but out in the grassroots, and far away from TV cameras and the mainstream media, another story is being written: Rising membership in gun-rights groups, increasing intensity among existing members of those groups, and even growing numbers of young people expressing support for gun rights.

[…]

Specifically, the Second Amendment Foundation said it had experienced a 1,200-percent increase in the number of 18-to-20-year-olds joining or supporting the organization.

“We normally don’t get that many members or donors in that age group, since the gun rights movement typically trends toward older Americans,” SAF founder and executive vice president Alan Gottlieb said. “But the 18-to-20-year-olds have never been specifically targeted before, and they are obviously alarmed. This influx of young Americans into the gun rights movement is important, not just to respond to the current gun control threat, but as the movement has gotten older, it is encouraging to see so many young adults getting involved in support of Second Amendment rights.”

While SAF has always conducted leadership training conferences, Gottlieb said, the group will now increase its emphasis on a younger audience and on efforts to integrate them into leadership roles.

Fascists March in Washington to Disarm Citizenry

Thanks, but keep your revolution out of my gun safe.

David Hogg, one of the Stoneman Douglas survivors who has been at the forefront of the issue ever since, spoke confidently about the event on Saturday morning in an early interview with GMA.

‘Today we are going to start a revolution. This is the beginning of a lifelong marathon not only for me but for my generation.

‘We are sick and tired of the inaction here in Washington and around the country at different state capitals and different cities, of politicians that are owned by the NRA and not listening to the constituents of America.

‘We are the children. We are making our voices heard and we will change America with or without these politicians and today is the beginning of that revolution,’ he declared.

Hogg, who complained on Friday that his parents ‘don’t know how to use a f****** democracy so we have to’ and said he was ‘tired’ from his advocacy work, said he was saddened by another shooting in Maryland this week which he said forced him to ‘relive’ his own experience.

Government Schools Use Kids for Political Activism

Today we are going to see our government schools encourage and facilitate the use of our children to agitate in support of a political issue. It is an abhorrent abuse of power.

Students across the country and around the world are expected to take part in a National School Walkout today in a call on Congress to pass tighter gun control laws.

The ENOUGH National School Walkout will be held this morning — exactly one month after the mass shooting at a Florida high school that killed 17 people and sent shock waves across the nation.

“the elephant in the room is semi-automatic guns”

Here is a letter to the editor about me in the Washington County Daily News. It’s a good reminder that when folks like me worry about the liberals wanting to go after our guns, those worries are not unfounded. So much ignorance…

Change the law on semi-automatic guns

I disagree with Owen Robinson’s Feb. 27 article, “Defending Our Kids.” He appears to be OK with the public purchasing semi-automatic rifles. I’ve learned through others that this is what AR15 type guns are called. Sandy Hook happened (20 children killed in 2012) and we did nothing other than decide, by default, that killing children was bearable. Six years later, 14 kids killed and … well, we’ll see what gets done.

Owen said “preserve the footings of individual liberty” and in his summary said “the violence only stops when met with equal force.”

I am just asking for a change. Change the law to put semi-automatic weapons in the same folder as automatic weapons. In 1986, a line in the sand was drawn and fully automatic machine guns were no longer for sale. Recorded Vote 74 was the Hughes Amendment which called for the banning of machine guns. The bill was passed and signed May 19, 1986, by President Ronald Reagan to become Public Law 99-308, the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act. Upon Reagan’s signature, the sale of new machine guns to or between civilians was banned.

However, you can, even today, still buy a machine gun legally along with other, even more destructive weapons.

Also on the books, on page 54 of Supreme Court Justice Scalia’s 2008 majority opinion, D.C vs. Heller he wrote, “Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited.” Mental illness, government buildings, school, felons, etc. are existing exceptions.

I know there are several contributing factors to this issue but the elephant in the room is semi-automatic guns. Pareto analysis says work on the biggest issue first. Don’t ignore the others, just focus on the thing that will effect the most change, the quickest.

Bruce Wilk West Bend

For the record: yes, I am OK with the public buying semi-automatic firearms.

Sasse Responds to President’s Anti-2nd Amendment Blatherings

Boom.

“Strong leaders don’t automatically agree with the last thing that was said to them. We have the Second Amendment and due process of law for a reason,” Ben Sasse, a Republican senator from Nebraska, said in a statement. “We’re not ditching any Constitutional protections simply because the last person the President talked to today doesn’t like them.”

Speaker Ryan Talks Sense on Push for Gun Control

Amen, Speaker Ryan.

House GOP leaders downplayed the need for Congress to pass expansive new gun control measures on Tuesday, instead turning their ire on the FBI and local law enforcement for failing to prevent the Parkland, Fla. school shooting.

Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters at a press conference that “we shouldn’t be banning guns for law-abiding citizens” but “focusing on making sure that citizens who shouldn’t get guns in the first place, don’t get those guns.” Ryan — who said arming teachers was a “good idea” but a local issue that Congress should not infringe upon — touted a House-passed bill to reinforce background checks under current law.

Protecting the right to Pokemon Go

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online. Here you go:

The summer of 2016 will be remembered for many things. It was the summer when America came to grips with the fact that Donald Trump was the Republican candidate. It was the summer when terrorism swept across the world from Nice to Dhaka to the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. It was the summer of Brexit when Britain voted to leave the European Union.

It is also the summer of watching hordes of people stumble through public places staring at their smartphones as they tried to capture animated creatures in the augmented reality of Pokemon Go. While the Pokemon Go craze has come and gone, it has left some interesting legal ramifications in its wake.

During the Pokemon Go phenomenon, the leaders of Milwaukee County became frustrated that so many people were wandering through public parks playing the game. The huge influx of people enjoying the public parks damaged landscaping, left trash, and sometimes disrupted other visitors. Rather than just enforce the existing rules against such damaging and disruptive behavior, Milwaukee officials decided to go after the businesses that make games like Pokemon Go. In January, the Milwaukee County Board passed an ordinance that required the companies who created virtual and location-based augmented reality games to get a permit and post a $1 million certificate of insurance in order for people to play their games in the park.

On its face, the ordinance was ridiculous and unenforceable. The fact that the users of a game might damage flowers in a county park hardly makes the producers of that game responsible, nor should a county be able to arbitrarily restrict access to public property for people engaging in legal activities. But the Milwaukee Common Council is not known for its logical dexterity. In response to the ordinance, a company called Candy Lab Inc., which makes a different augmented reality game, sued the county.

Last week, U.S. District Court Judge J.P. Stadtmueller issued a preliminary injunction prohibiting Milwaukee County from enforcing its ordinance saying that it likely violates the First Amendment. This might be the first time in the nation’s jurisprudence that First Amendment protections have been expressly extended to augmented reality games.

In his ruling, Stadtmueller systematically dismantles Milwaukee County’s ordinance and all of its flaws. He says in part, “the Ordinance thus dooms itself in its failure to provide ‘narrowly drawn, reasonable, and definite standards’ to guide the County officials who must apply it,” and that the game in question, “contains the least minimum quantum of expression needed to constitute protectable speech.” In a final slap at Milwaukee County officials, the judge states, “the Ordinance is revealed for its strangeness and lack of sophistication.”

This ruling is a good reminder that while technologies change, constitutionally protected rights do not. In his ruling, Stadtmueller correctly cites and earlier case, Brown v. Entm’t Merchs. Ass’n, in which the Supreme Court clearly stated that, “whatever the challenges of applying the Constitution to everadvancing technology, ‘the basic principles of freedom of speech and the press, like the First Amendment’s command, do not vary’ when a new and different medium for communication appears.”

That statement is a recognition of the fact that rights are endowed upon individuals. Our right to free speech is inherently individual and deserving of protection irrespective of the medium of transmission. The men who wrote our Constitution likely never envisioned telephones, the internet, or Pokemon Go, but they did not need to in order for the protections they wrote to apply. The right is to be protected. The technology is irrelevant.

This same principle applies to other rights as well. We also have a right to keep and bear arms (which is actually a more specific declaration of our broader right to property). And while our founders never envisioned the complexity or sophistication of modern firearms, they did not need to. The right is to be protected. The technology is irrelevant.

Our Constitution is not, nor was it ever intended to be, a living document. It does not need to be. Its brilliance rests in the understanding that human rights live in the bosom of each and every person. We must protect those rights whether they are being exercised with a quill, pen, keyboard, smartphone, musket or AR-15.

USCCA Disinvited from NRA Annual Meeting

Wow. That stinks.

West Bend, WI – The United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) today announced that the National Rifle Association (NRA) has disinvited the organization from its 2017 Annual Meetings & Exhibits and the 2018 Great American Outdoor Show because of “concerns regarding its programs.”

The move shocked the leadership of the USCCA because they were given less than two weeks notice that they had been banned from the annual show, even though they had attended for the past several years.  This decision also came as a surprise because over the past two months, the leadership from the NRA and the USCCA met twice to discuss the shared goal of the two organizations in support of the Second Amendment.

In a note sent to millions of USCCA supporters, Founder and President Tim Schmidt said that even though the NRA might be fearing the competition, USCCA will still support the NRA’s efforts to protect the Second Amendment.

I suspect that the real reason is that the NRA offers a competing insurance product and the USCCA has been gaining too much market share for the NRA’s liking. What’s unfortunate for 2nd Amendment supporters is that we have two advocacy organizations who won’t work together due to competing business interests.

Feingold Suggests Executive Orders to Undermine 2nd Amendment

First, one must note that Feingold is raising money in California. He does seem quite a bit more comfortable out there. Second, I don’t think it is any surprise that Feingold opposes the rights guaranteed in the 2nd Amendment or that he would support the Executive Branch usurping the Legislative branch for the cause of tamping down our civil rights. It is pretty much par for the course for Feingold.

The video from James O’Keefe shows theconservative activist and his Project Veritas team impersonating a liberal donor giving money to Feingold at a Palo Alto fundraiser and asking whether Clinton could issue an executive order to tighten restrictions on firearm sales. In the video, Feingold says Democrats should work to win control of the U.S. Senate and pass legislation to regulate gun sales but also points to a position on Clinton’s website — that like President Barack Obama she could do an end run around Congress and issue an executive order to expand background checks on gun show sales.

Feingold, a former Democratic U.S. senator, is running against Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson.

“Well, there might be an executive order,” Feingold tells a disguised O’Keefe and other wealthy liberal donors. “…But what we all need is to win the Senate, have (Clinton) there, and then put pressure on the (GOP-controlled) House. And we might even win the House.”

Christie Makes Pro 2nd Amendment Vetoes

This is interesting given Christie’s poor record on 2nd Amendment issues.

In a blockbuster announcement today, Governor Christie conditionally vetoed two pieces of anti-gun legislation (A3689 and S816), imposing dramatic conditions that would change them into pro-gun measures establishing shall-issue right-to-carry and repealing New Jersey’s 2002 “smart gun” law mandate with no strings attached.

Copies of the vetoes are available here and here.

The “conditional veto” procedure allows the governor to reject legislation that reaches his desk and propose a re-written version to the legislature.  If the legislature concurs in the conditions imposed by the governor, then the measure as re-written becomes law immediately.  Otherwise, the legislation dies.

First, good for him and good for the citizens of New Jersey.

Second, he’s laying groundwork for 2020.