Archive for category: RKBA

Friday Quote – Cody Wilson

10 Aug
August 10, 2018

What’s going to make me comfortable… is when people stop coming into this office and acting like there’s a debate about it. The debate is over. The guns are downloadable. The files are in the public domain. You cannot take them back. You can adjust your politics to this reality. You will not ask me to adjust mine.

Can’t Stop the Signal – UPDATED

02 Aug
August 2, 2018

Yeah, I know. Everyone is using that as the title of their post about Code Is Free Speech

For the few of you who don’t know, let me borrow some text from the site:

CodeIsFreeSpeech.com is a publicly-available Web site for truthful, non-misleading, non-commercial speech and information that is protected under the United States Constitution. The purpose of this project is to allow people to share knowledge and empower them to exercise their fundamental, individual rights. CodeIsFreeSpeech.com is a project of Firearms Policy Coalition, Firearms Policy Foundation, The Calguns Foundation, California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees, and a number of individuals who are passionate about the Constitution and individual liberties. We wish to thank Cody Wilson and Defense Distributed for their courage, passion, innovation, and inspiration.

Download all the plans!

EDIT: It looks like Amazon wasn’t comfortable hosting the site and has shut it down. But, everything is already out there, so as soon as I find a good repository, I’ll post it.

EDIT 2 – BACK UP!

H/t John Richardson

Two Wins For Gun Rights

26 Jul
July 26, 2018

Well, maybe one-and-a-half. Or three-and-a-half.

First, Defense Distributed and the Second Amendment Foundation made the feds blink. In essence, the feds conceded that DD has a First Amendment to distribute CAD plans for 3-D printed gun parts, including parts to assemble an entire gun. RKBA activists often say that the Second Amendment protects the First, and this proved the reverse is also true. Another tidbit out of this agreement is that the feds stated that semiautomatic arms under .50 cal are not considered military arms – including platforms like the AR-15. That could have some downstream ramifications.

Second, is a 9th Circuit ruling that the Second Amendment extends to carrying weapons outside of the home. Since the Ninth previously said that states can prohibit concealed carry, that means that open carry is fully allowed for those states that fall under the Ninth’s jurisdiction. This is kind of a half victory, because I fully expect this to be overturned by an en banc ruling. OTOH, that just might be the impetus to kick it up to SCOTUS, who with a new judge might be willing to add to Heller.

No matter how you tally the results, we’ve scored some wins.

Picking Fights

23 Jul
July 23, 2018

So, the big news over the weekend was a “shooting over a parking spot” where the shooter “got off because Stand Your Ground.” And the shooter was known for “being a problem and using racial slurs.” In short, the local news is spinning this for all its worth.

Let’s go to the film!

https://youtube.com/watch?v=9nFtxkJ7ywg%3Fversion%3D3%26rel%3D1%26fs%3D1%26autohide%3D2%26showsearch%3D0%26showinfo%3D1%26iv_load_policy%3D1%26wmode%3Dtransparent

The shooter is probably an asshole. He may have used racial slurs in the past. He also did not initiate the attack. He was shoved to the ground and facing at least one attacker (man) and maybe two (man & girlfriend). Enough to make a disparity of force. Essentially, almost anyone in that position would meet the criteria for a self-defense shooting.

Shall we tally up everyone’s mistakes?

  1. Girlfriend shouldn’t have parked in the handicapped slot. Really? You were in such a rush that you needed to park there?

  2. Getting into a shouting match over a parking spot. Exactly what did you think shouting at someone over parking in a handicap spot will do? Prove your superiority?

  3. Physically attack someone because he’s shouting at your girlfriend. Your first instinct is to attack? Exactly what was going through your head when that decision was made?

What is the common theme?

Check your damned ego!

Reason Article Barrage!

11 Jul
July 11, 2018

Cleaning up some open tabs. As my readers should know, Reason magazine is where I get a lot of my news and analysis.

California Supreme Court Rules Impossible Laws Are Constitutional Basically, the court says impossibility can be a defense, but does not invalidate the law. Okay, I can understand that concept in theory, but it has real world costs for people forced to defend themselves from overzealous prosecutors enforcing this bullshit law. This is the kind of legal wonky ruling that reduces confidence in legal thinkers.

Illinois Court Rules That Police Can’t Arrest A Person For Carrying a Gun Without Checking For Valid Permit. This kind of balances out the previous article. I’d say I was surprised it came out of Illinois, but their courts have been much better on RKBA than the legislature.

A federal judge has blocked Tennessee’s practice of suspending driver’s licenses for unpaid court fees without first determining if the debtors are too poor to pay. This is a good step to remedying the vicious cycle of fines, suspension, jail that plagued the lower income communities.

Reason Is Concerned That the Recent Loss by the Southern Poverty Law Center Could be a Threat to Free Speech. I understand the concern that defamation suits can have a chilling effect on speech, which is why I support strong Anti-SLAPP laws. I will also admit to my own schadenfreude against the SPLC.

DC Taxes the Hell Out of Ride Sharing to Prop Up Broken Metro System. In my trips to DC, I’ve never had to deal with the numerous issues plaguing the Metro. That being said, with the coming changes in vehicles (automation and electric), I can’t support additional taxes to rail that is on its way out, much less an agency as troubled as the Metro.

Friday Quote – DC v Heller

29 Jun
June 29, 2018

“There seems to us no doubt, on the basis of both text and history, that the Second Amendment conferred an individual right to keep and bear arms.”

Seemed appropriate since this week marks a decade since the decision.

Friday Quote- Piper Smith

22 Jun
June 22, 2018

“If you’re fighting homophobia but not hoplophobia you’re doing it wrong.

If you’re fighting hoplophobia but not homophobia you’re also doing it wrong.”

The NRA Works Hard Not To Represent Me

21 Jun
June 21, 2018

Reason posted an article asking of the NRA is too Republican. Here’s where I have to do some prep work to properly discuss this topic. First, yes, I am a member of the NRA and donate to the NRA-ILA (the political wing of the organization). It’s also important to remember that the NRA is not some monolith out of 2001. There are six million dues-paying members. They represent a wide variety of views, including on the Second Amendment. For this post, if I’m saying NRA, I’m going to be talking about the current executive leadership. The one that makes the day-to-day decisions.

Because, the NRA may not be too Republican, but it’s definitely too conservative. I don’t mind that when fighting for my Second Amendment rights, but the NRA has been stepping out into the wider debate on societal issues. (I despise using the term “culture war.”) To be fair, some of it was foisted on the NRA by the media and political players, but some of it appears to be playing to the large part of the base.

Except, I’m not in that base. I’m too liberal on social issues, too atheist, and too indoorsy. Or at least it seems that way when I look at who the NRA chooses to put in front of the cameras.

Here’s why I’m bitching. We exhort the vast majority of gun owners to join the NRA. Why should they when the NRA refuses to represent them? We castigate anti-gunners for lumping all gun owners with criminals, but then the NRA goes and does the same thing to anyone on the left of the political spectrum.

And can the NRA please just shut the fuck up about violent video games? There’s no good evidence that such a popular medium drives people to murder. What it does is alienate many of the people who would join us.

I am an NRA member, but there are days when I wonder if my limited money would be better spent.

More WTF From the Parkland Shooting

04 Jun
June 4, 2018

It came out last week that the Broward Sheriff Office commander on site during the Parkland shooting refused to allow special rescue teams from going in to render aid. Six times. These were special teams made up of paramedics and police for the express purpose of getting to the wounded in a possible hostile situation. Sixty times BSO refused to let special units into a shooting. You know where the big danger is people bleeding out – and you have precious little time to save them.

Takeaways:

  1. The BSO could not have fucked this situation up more outside of grooming the shooter and handing him the gun. At every opportunity before the shooting, they failed to take action that would have put the shooter in the system, and at least made him a prohibited person. During the shooting, they dusted off their 1995 school shooting manual and had no fucking clue how to appropriately respond.

  2. You are on your own. When seconds count, the good guys may be minutes away. Even if the good guys are coming, they can be roadblocked by feckless incompetents. Carry your damn guns when you can. Carry your damn tourniquets. Carry your damn flashlights. Train on your shooting. Train on your first aid. I’m just as bad as most people in keeping my training up to date, but I am working on that.

I’m hoping this will be the last horrific revelation, but I doubt it.

They’re Modest Because They Don’t Work

31 May
May 31, 2018

Oh look! One of the NYT writers put together a listicle of “modest” gun control proposals that will reduce “gun deaths.” Let’s see what brilliance has been spewed this time. Original text in italics.

1. Require universal background checks to see if a purchaser is a felon or a threat to others. The latest study finds that 22 percent of guns are obtained in the U.S. without a background check, and polls find that more than 90 percent of the public supports making these checks universal. Yet the federal government balks.

Let’s be charitable and say that the study is correct and that 22% of guns are purchased without background checks. It says nothing about how many of those are used in a crime. Moreover, as much as they keep repeating the 90% line, when the universal background check proposals hit the ballots, they fail or just barely pass – no where near this mythical 90%.

2. Improve background checks by allowing the federal government adequate time to perform them. At the moment, if the authorities have not completed the check within three business days, the buyer can get the gun. More than 90 percent of checks are completed within minutes, but a small number require investigation. The shooter who killed nine people at an African-American church in Charleston, S.C., in 2015 should not have been able to purchase a weapon because of a drug history, but the background check was not finished in three days — so he was able to buy it.

Except the vast majority of these flags are false positives, which means that you are keeping the gun out of the hand of someone who should have it and may need it right fucking now. And considering how often the NICS system isn’t assigned enough personnel now, I’m hesitant to trust the federal government to properly staff it to investigate all the flags. Further, if you want to improve the system, let’s make sure all the fucking records are there.

3. Pass “red flag laws” that allow a judge to order the temporary removal of a gun from people who are a threat to themselves or others. Connecticut enacted the first of these laws back in 1999, and Indiana, California, Washington, Oregon and Florida have passed similar laws since. The idea is that if friends hear someone threaten suicide or mumble about attacking a school, the authorities can remove a gun. A hearing is later held with due process protections.

Yes, let’s deprive a person of their property without due process, and on the basis of unverifiable “whispers.” Nope, that won’t be abused. And do you really think that the police will return the individual’s property when it is determined (s)he is not a danger to the community? I mean, it’s not like they’ve refused to do so in the past or made the process so expensive most people walk away from their property.

4. Get guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. Nearly half of women murdered in America are killed by a present or past lover, yet the existing laws in this area are full of loopholes.

Do you even know the fucking laws? People convicted of domestic abuse (even misdemeanor domestic abuse) are prohibited persons. That means they can’t legally purchase a gun. So, what are these loopholes? You mean like when a woman won’t press charges, and therefore the man is not convicted? That fucking sucks, but it’s not a loophole. Because we can’t deprive someone of their rights based on allegations.

5. Require safe storage of guns, preferably in a safe or at least with a trigger lock. One study found that only a minority of gun owners in the U.S. keep all their guns secure. When guns aren’t stored safely, it is easier for children to find them and play with them, for teenagers to use them for suicides, or for burglars to steal them. Some 300,000 guns are stolen each year in the United States.

Let’s start out with some real common sense. It is a good idea to keep your weapons secured and/or under your direct control. The devil is in the details – such as what happened in Heller. One other minor thing, accidental deaths by firearms (even among children) are at their lowest point – even with more guns in circulation.

6. Make serial numbers harder to file off, and require microstamping, so that cartridges can be traced back to the gun that fired the bullets.

Except that microstamping doesn’t work and increases the cost of the guns. Something that puts them out of the reach of people who actually need them for self defense. And how the fuck do serial numbers prevent “gun deaths?”

7. Invest in “smart guns” that require a PIN, fingerprint or nearby bracelet to fire. It’s outrageous that someone who steals my iPhone is foiled by my PIN, but stolen guns can be immediately fired. Smart guns shouldn’t be obligatory, but they should be an option. The way forward is probably for a police force to experiment with smart guns, giving them credibility with the public.

When the police or military start actually using them, I’ll start to these guns seriously. When they start actually using them and not disabling the smart devices, I may actually considering purchasing one. Guess what I will never do – support all guns be smart guns. Why? One becuse they significantly increase the cost and decrease the effectiveness of the gun. Two things that should never happen for items used for self defense.

Let’s take the smartphone example, since those are common items that have some sort of ID system. How often does your fingerprint scan fail to unlock your phone? Do you think it would be improved by hands coated in sweat – or blood? How often do you accidentally hit the wrong pin and have to re-enter? Do you think that would increase under stress – like fighting for your life? Do you want to waste a precious second of that fight unlocking your most effective means of protecting your life? And let’s not forget that criminals are already very good at bypassing current “smart” systems.

8. Support community anti-violence programs, like Cure Violence and Becoming a Man, that work with at-risk young people and show excellent success in reducing shootings. One study showed each dollar invested resulted in at least $5 in savings from reduced crime.

Stopped clocks and all that. Finally, something that might actually work because it gets to the real cause of “gun deaths” – people. Removing or restricting guns does not remove or restrict the violent tendencies of people born or bred into a criminal life. Those you need to either change through social and/or psychological programs. Or remove those people from general society if they are unable or unwilling to change.

9. Limit buyers in most cases to one or two gun purchases a month, to reduce gun trafficking.

Where has this worked? Virginia got rid of theirs because it was doing more to inconvenience lawful purchasers and doing nothing to stop the mostly mythical “iron pipeline.”

10. Invest in gun buybacks. Since 1994, Americans have acquired an additional 100 million guns. The average gun-owning household now has eight firearms, and as owners die there should be a big push to acquire these guns.

Again, another proposal shown not to fucking work. It’s a waste of public resources so that politicians can say they’ve “done something.” Although, it does give me a chance to pick up some guns on the cheap.

So, out of ten proposals, only one might work, and the rest are ineffective at best and cause deprivation of life and liberty at worst.