Talking past each other

A few days ago there was was a pretty big discussion on some blogs about the “Godwin-y” comparison of publication of concealed weapons permit holders to Jews (etc.). The relevant posts are below in chronological order. There was one post prior to this where the Jews in the Attic Test came up in private email but I’m not including it since it was not public.

The comments are where most of the action is:

For the most part it appears to me that many of the participants were talking past each other. Joanna appears to be justified for expressing some irritation with:

I’m gonna say this once, and I’m gonna say it loud and use small words, so everyone understands me.

IT’S NOT OKAY THAT NEWSPAPERS MADE DATABASES WITH INFORMATION ABOUT CONCEALED-CARRY WEAPONS PERMIT HOLDERS

BUT

IT’S NOT KRISTALNACHT.

But then she appears to talk past them because as near as I could tell no one said it was anything like Kristallnacht.

That said I mostly disagree with Joanna saying it is over the top to make the comparison between the list of CCW holders and Jews.

It boils down to three things that need to be addressed.

  1. How bad does it have to get before it is okay to say it is acceptable to make the comparison?
  2. Just what is the current state of affairs?
  3. Gun ownership is a choice. Not something immutable like the color of your skin, your gender, or perhaps (let’s not go there, okay?) your sexual preference.

Point 1.

Silence = Death

My claim is that if you wait until the bigotry is so bad that you have events which are the equivalent of Kristallnacht you have waited much too long. At that point the police are looking the other way if not actually participating in the injustice.

A little bit of history (mostly from memory which is probably more than a little bit fuzzy so correct me where I make errors) is in order.

The abuse of Jews in Germany did not spring up out of nothingness when Hitler rose to power in the mid 1930s. Most people know there was a lot of anti-Jewish sentiment in Germany after WWI. But there was a strong German dislike for them going back several decades. And in some places in Europe it extended back hundreds of years.

That sentiment and the associated abuse did not include extermination camps until 1941. It sometimes involved unequal treatment under the law, segregation, and even driving them out of the country. But a greater proportion of the time it involved ostracism, boycotts, and public humiliation.

When is the appropriate time to complain about being mistreated as a group? Just what is the threshold before you get vocal and, in no uncertain terms, tell the bigots to back off?

Is it when the other kids in school make fun of your child because of the funny hat he wears sometimes? Is it sufficient if the newspapers attribute most crime and/or disease to “your kind”? Will it be time when the textbooks portray you as inherently evil (see also here)? Or what if the schools and public accommodations are segregated and significantly unequal? Do you wait until you are spat upon nearly every time you are in public? Or maybe you wait until it becomes illegal to have a government job.

I claim the time to get vocal about is as soon as it happens. I don’t think it is appropriate to stand secure in your position, unruffled, and get on with your business. It is very rare that you can win a war if you always play defense. You must go on the offense because otherwise your enemy will chose the time and place of his attack such that it maximizes his opportunity for success. If you are always fighting to protect your weakest flank what do you expect the result will be? We must fight on their weakest flank with our strongest “troops”.

A somewhat proportional response (Joanna’s best point) is appropriate. You don’t shoot the school bully after he splashed mud on your daughter’s dress (you look the other way while daughter Kim takes him down and rubs his face in the mud). You do shoot the police herding your family into the railroad cattle cars (a few hand grenades into their fully loaded APCs wouldn’t hurt either).

In 1987 gay activists came up with the slogan Silence = Death. They used this as the text for a poster composed of a pink triangle on a black background. The pink triangle, of course, was appropriated in the 1970s as a reminder of Nazi Germany where an inverted pink triangle was used to identify known homosexuals.

Silence in the face of injustice is almost certain to result in more injustice. And left uncorrrected long enough it will result in the extermination of the targeted population. The extermination may be the result of conversions to non-targeted groups or it may be through the physical elimination of that population.

Silence is not an option.

Point 2.

We don’t know who discovered water, but we know it wasn’t a fish.–Marshall McLuhan

We are blind.

I think one of the problems the Jews faced in Germany was the “boiling frog” problem. Things moved slowly enough that there was never a big enough change in one day/week/month that they could justify taking a stand over the latest injustice. The cost of putting up a fight versus the possible benefit never looked better than just trying to “keep your head down” and getting through another day. For those familiar with optimization problems–I view it as seeking a local optimum while actively avoiding the search for a global optimum.

I think it is far too easy for gun owners and especially the neutral but non-gun owning population to be unaware of the current state of affairs because it “is just the way it is”. The status quo almost always seems perfectly normal.

I will now point out some things that I think most people overlook when they think of gun owners and the situation we face. I do this in a fairly general manner and don’t even get into the most extreme situations like in New Jersey where “When dealing with guns, the citizen acts at his peril” (New Jersey v. Pelleteri). In order to see how bad it is I use comparison to other specific constitutionally protected rights.

Individual treatment.

There are people advocating that parents ask if their child’s friend has guns in their home before allowing them to visit. What if it were a religious or skin color test before they could visit?

There are celebrities who advocate that you be sent to jail if you own a gun.

There are people advocating “snuffing out” gunshop owners and pro-gun legislators–complete with lists.

There are people advocating the killing all gun owners.

The schools.

Of course you know that guns are only allowed near schools in a handful of states under very restricted situations. And you’ve heard about kids being suspended for possession of “GI-Joe” action figures with “guns” the shorter than your thumbnail. Or a sandwich eaten into the shape of a gun. What sort of message does this send the children about guns and gun ownership?

Are there any school textbooks that portray the shooting sports, self-defense, or the individual right to keep and bear arms in a positive manner? If so I have never seen them.

If it were a First Amendment issue regarding religious symbols or clothes what would be the effect? There would be a law against Jewish/Christian/Muslim symbols within 1000 feet of a school. If you park you car with a bible in it just outside the limit they suspend you anyway. And if you make the sign of the cross in front of another student you get kicked out of school.

Businesses.

Nearly all workplaces forbid you to carry a gun. It doesn’t matter that you are a petite female, elderly, wheelchair bound, or unable for any reason to defend yourself yet work the night shift in the bad part of town. Your best tool for defending yourself against death or permanent injury has to remain in your car and parked off the company property or you, almost for certain, will be fired on the spot.

If you park your car with guns in the trunk so you can go hunting when you get off work they will bring dogs in to sniff for them on the first day of hunting season–and then fire you.

Many businesses and shopping malls have signs on their doors forbidding you to carry on their property.

eBay, PayPal, and other commerce sites turn you away when firearms and/or firearm related accessories are involved. And in many cases who can blame them? The ATF has a reputation of  confiscating records, computers, products, and jailing the people involved in legitimate firearm businesses and frequently refusing to even tell them of the allegations against them.

Laws.

You can’t carry a gun on a plane, train, or many buses. You can’t carry a gun in the post office. There are some places where you cannot carry a gun in hosptials or churches.

Where is the Federal agency charged with enforcing the laws and making regulations restricting the First Amendment? What form do you have to fill out when you purchase a serial numbered Bible, Koran, or Torah? The form that must be kept for 20 years and be available for inspection by law enforcement?

And shouldn’t you have to pass a background check before you can purchased a religious book? And wouldn’t a 10 day waiting period be a good idea? What could it possibly hurt to wait a few days before getting possession of such powerful words they have been used as justification for the death and oppression of millions of people? It’s not like if you you need a copy of the Bible or Koran to defend yourself against an abusive ex who is threatening to kill you. You can get along just fine for a few days (or months) while the police interview your neighbors to see if you really should be allowed to own a book. And don’t forget mandated, government approved, training on the responsibilities of religious book ownership.

What if there was a law that enhanced penalties for crimes committed by Jews/Muslims/homosexuals? Suppose if you robbed someone while being a Muslim you automatically had another five years added to your prison term. How does that sit with you? We have that situation for gun owners, right now, in this country.

What if the standards of evidence were different if you were a Jew? Instead of the prosecutor having to prove your guilt you had to prove your innocence? I had one former New York City prosecutor tell me that if you shot someone in NYC the gun owner, and rightly so, had to prove it was self-defense. It was not the job of the prosecutor to prove it wasn’t self-defense.

There was a case where failure to pay a $200 tax on a shotgun (a jury eventually acquitted them of all of the alleged crimes and recommended the Federal agents compensate them for shooting the family dog as well) resulted in snipers in camouflage surrounding the house of the alleged perpetrator with the orders, “Deadly force can and should be used against any armed adult outside the house”. This order was in effect even without any occupants of the house knowing there was law enforcement outside or that they had orders to shoot on sight. The occupants of the house were exercising a constitutionally protected right when they left the house carrying their guns–as they always did when they went outside. It resulted in two of them being seriously wounded and a mother with a baby in her arms being killed via bullet to her head. What happened to the shooter and the people who gave the order? Even after congressional hearings they didn’t even loose their jobs or pay a fine. How much worse does it have to get before one can consider it the equivalent of the treatment of Jews in Germany 75 years ago?

Everyone knows about Nazi Germany treatment of Jews. But what about their treatment of private gun owners? The story of the Belgian Corporal is just one example. Did you know the U.S. Gun Control Act of 1968 was based on the German Weapons Control Act of 1938? And someone dares to say it’s inappropriate to compare gun owners with the plight of the Jews?

Point 3

Chilling Effect Doctrine: In Constitutional Law, any law or practice which has the effect of seriously discouraging the exercise of a Constitutional Right.–Blacks Law Dictionary.

True. There is a something to be said about “having a choice” to be a gun owner. You don’t have a choice to be black, racially Jewish, and perhaps homosexual. It is for this reason I frequently mention “interracial marriage” as a comparison. You don’t have to date, marry or stay married to someone with a different skin color. You don’t have to be openly gay. And you don’t have to be Baptist, Catholic, or Muslim.

So if your name and address was published in a list of all the Catholics in a state, right next to the sex offender database, you should just suck it up and not worry about it? Or how about the list of people in interracial marriages? It isn’t valid to compare that to a list of Jews because you can get off the list by changing the church you go to, or divorcing your spouse? Are you serious?

In this country we have a specific, constitutionally, protected right to belong to whatever church we want to as long we don’t hurt anyone else. And punishment for hurting someone else cannot be in the form of prior restraint. The law may punish someone for falsely yelling fire in a crowded theater, but the law may not remove someone’s ability to yell while in the theater. Yet we have that in this country for gun owners.

When someone starts publishing lists of “those people” it doesn’t really matter whether the list is of racial Jews or people that worship at the church of John Moses Browning. The publishing of that list serves just one purpose. And that purpose is not for the benefit of those on the list. The purpose is to cause a chilling effect on the exercise of that constitutionally protected activity.

Conclusion

The comparison of gun owners to Jews is valid. It currently doesn’t compare to the situation of Jews in Germany in 1941 or even Kristallnacht in 1938. But it’s not much different from their situation in 1931. The social stigma, the negative stereotyping in the press, schools, and the enhanced harshness of the laws all parallel the plight of the Jews in 1931. We even have politicians talking about the “Gun Problem” just like there were German politicians talking about the “Jewish Problem”. There are only a few people that want to kill us and a few more “enlightened ones” who just want us in prison. But you will have no difficulty finding people that want to stigmatize, harass and impose further restrictions on us.

Perhaps when comparing gun owners to Jews it should be qualified with “the Jews in 1931″. They didn’t have it so bad, did they? They didn’t have anything to worry about, did they?

True, our situation has been improving over the last few years. The trend is definitely up compared to the dark days of 1994 and 1995. There were smart, extremely well informed gun rights professionals, who then believed that the fight for gun rights would all be over in ten years. In ten years, they told me, the only people with guns would have a government paycheck or would be criminals. There would not be any young people to carry on the culture and the culture of freedom associated with gun ownership would be essentially extinct within 20 years. They were wrong. But the situation is only marginally improved.

Ten years doesn’t sound like a very long time but the changes can be profound. Just because the are no extermination camps for gun owners today doesn’t mean we can’t run a path parallel to the German Jews of 1931.

300,000 guns ‘involved in crime’ each year

I just “love” the careful wording of this article:

Nationwide the ATF tracks some 300,000 guns involved in crimes every year.

In 2008 there were about 9,500 murders and approximately 317,000 robberies and aggravated assaults committed with firearms. Are they saying they found nearly every one of those guns and that virtually no gun was used in more than one crime?

No.

Then what are they saying?

The answer is that it includes recovered stolen guns. The anti-gun people try to use the ATF data in ways that imply the guns were all used in crimes and end up with invalid conclusions. Watch them closely.

Another thing I don’t like about the article is the anti-gun ownership tone:

ATF special agent Kelvin Crenshaw says his agency is investigating people related to the weapons involved in all these shootings.

“Every gun has a story to tell,” he says.

Investigators are now looking at everyone from the dealers, who first sold those guns, to the killers themselves – and everyone in between.

“If there is one mistake in your agenda,” says Crenshaw, “we’re gonna catch you and you’re gonna go to jail.”

ATF investigators also say there is no law in Washington requiring people to report a stolen gun to police. they say such a law would surely provide more leads for their investigations.

One mistake and they are going to send someone to jail? Even if it was an innocent mistake? No intent is required?

And apparently isn’t not possible to have too many laws and regulations restricting the exercise of a specific enumerated right. They need to have as many ways as possible to put “those kind of people” in jail.

TSA backs off bloggers

I wonder who slapped their wrists:

In the wake of public outcry against the Transportation Security Administration for serving civil subpoenas on two bloggers, the government agency has canceled the legal action and apologized for the strong-arm tactics agents used.

Travel writer and photographer Steven Frischling, who was served with a subpoena by two TSA agents on Tuesday, told Threat Level that he received a phone call Thursday evening from John Drennan, deputy chief counsel for enforcement at TSA, telling him the administration was withdrawing its subpoena.

Frischling was told the TSA would no longer be pursuing the investigation into how he received a security directive that he published on his personal blog, Flying with Fish, on Dec. 27.

Health care bill constitutionally flawed

Of course the entire concept of the bill is unconstitutional. But it’s going to be tough to find someone with standing and get any serious court attention that could scrap the entire thing. But the attorney generals of 13 states might slow things down some:

Republican attorneys general in 13 states say congressional leaders must remove Nebraska’s political deal from the federal health care overhaul bill or face legal action, according to a letter provided to The Associated Press Wednesday.

“We believe this provision is constitutionally flawed,” South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster and the 12 other attorneys general wrote in the letter to be sent Wednesday night to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

“As chief legal officers of our states we are contemplating a legal challenge to this provision and we ask you to take action to render this challenge unnecessary by striking that provision,” they wrote.

Those signing on are Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Michigan, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington state. I’m proud to say both of my states of Idaho and Washington are attempting to stop this abomination.

I just “love” how they point out they are all Republicans. Other sources make an even bigger deal out of that point:

House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., said the letter was a political ploy.

“This threat stinks of partisan politics,” he said in a statement. “If Henry McMaster wants to write federal law he should run for Congress not governor.”

Meanwhile, Nelson is taking his message on health care reform directly to his constituents. In a television ad beginning during Wednesday night’s Nebraska-Arizona Holiday Bowl football game, the Democrat says he stuck by his principles throughout the debate and doesn’t want Nebraskans to be confused on his position.

While it’s not uncommon for states to challenge federal laws in court, one legal expert said political bluster was likely behind the letter.

“I do think that it is some combination of the losers just complaining about the officiating, or complaining about how the game was played, in combination with trying to make the bill look as seedy and inappropriate as possible, for political purposes,” says Andy Siegel, a former University of South Carolina School of Law professor now teaching at Seattle University School of Law.

“It is smart politics to try to tarnish it and make it look less like an achievement and more like some sort of corrupted bargain,” he said.

Principles? Democrats have principles? I didn’t know Democrats had principles. Can anyone tell me any principles the Democrats will admit to? The Republicans claim some principles but treat them as guidelines or just half-hearted suggestions.

Brady Center needs money

As Sebastian noted the Brady Center has been almost shrill in it’s requests for money. Since that post there have been even more requests. Here is the complete list so far:

  • 7:20 AM Dec 17th: Please consider a year-end, tax-deductible gift to the Brady Campaign’s sister organization, the Brady Center. Thanks!
  • 9:49 AM Dec 28th: Be charitable and donate to the Brady CENTER to save on taxes for this year!
  • 11:32 AM Dec 28th: Don’t forget to consider a tax-deductible year-end gift to the Brady Center! Now is the time.
  • 9:41 AM Dec 29th: December 31 is the end of tax year. Click here to give a tax deductible gift to help make America safer.
  • 1:16 PM Dec 29th: Build safer communities and keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of dangerous people. Make a tax-deductible gift today.
  • 8:03 AM (PST) Dec 30th: Help protect families and communities from gun violence. Click here to make a tax-deductible contribution today.
  • 11:02 AM (PST) Dec 30th: Want health care reform? End gun violence today. Make a tax-deductible gift today.
  • 2:31 PM (PST) Dec 30th: Ending gun violence begins with you. Click here to make a tax-deductible gift today.
  • 8:05 AM (PST) Dec 31st: Help Brady reduce gun violence & reduce the $100 Billion in Tax Dollars spent every year to treat gun victims. Give today.
  • 11:02 AM (PST) Dec 31st: We all pay for gun violence in lost lives and higher taxes. Click here to make a tax-deductible gift today.
  • 3:02 PM (PST) Dec 31st: It takes just two words to fight gun violence…Give today.
  • 8:02 AM (PST) Jan 1st: Once the trigger is pulled, it’s too late…Give today and protect tomorrow.
  • 11:01 AM (PST) Jan 1st: It takes more than words to fight gun violence. Give today.
  • 3:01 PM (PST) Jan 1st: Help us be the example to the world that we should be…Give today to end gun violence.
  • 8:01 AM (PST) Jan 2: With great freedom comes great responsibility…Give today to end gun violence.
  • 11:01 AM (PST Jan 2: Your support helps us be the centralized information source for news related to gun legislation. Give today.
  • 3:00 PM (PST) Jan 2: Donors are the most powerful force to stop gun violence. Give today.

In an effort get even more donations for them I present the following pleas for money for the Brady Campaign:

And if that doesn’t convince you of the righteousness of the Brady cause this should provide the final proof:

Of course what it convinced me of is that any money donated would end up buying this kid more drugs.

[H/T to Dave Workman for the videos.]

That was the intent

The guns news out of California has been pretty dismal recently. The latest is:

The Department of Justice’s Bureau of Firearms is charged with approving weapons for sale in California each year. From 2002 to 2006, the bureau approved 72 new semi-automatic pistols on average each year.

In 2007, a law took full effect mandating that new center-fire semi-automatic pistols include both a mechanism that prevents firing when the magazine is removed, as well as an indicator showing when a live round is in the gun chamber. Rim-fire semi-automatics must have the magazine disconnect device.

In three years, the Bureau of Firearms has approved only nine new semi-automatic weapons, including only one in 2008.

Starting tomorrow it will go to zero per year:

Beginning Jan. 1, the law requires that new semi-automatic handguns in California include an innovative firing pin that stamps microscopic characters onto cartridge cases.

And zero manufactures have accepted that invitation to be boycotted. I think driving the number to zero was the real intent of the law.

Winter can be a depressing time for some people but spring is coming and things will look much better later in the year.

I expect that by the end of the year the law will be essentially neutered because Californians will be able to buy guns in any state they choose. And following that I expect a lawsuit enforcing the Heller decision against the state to wipe the “approved list” from the law books.

I wonder if I’m next

Being a critic of TSA apparently is frowned upon by the government thugs:

Two bloggers received home visits from Transportation Security Administration agents Tuesday after they published a new TSA directive that revises screening procedures and puts new restrictions on passengers in the wake of a recent bombing attempt by the so-called underwear bomber.

Special agents from the TSA’s Office of Inspection interrogated two U.S. bloggers, one of them an established travel columnist, and served them each with a civil subpoena demanding information on the anonymous source that provided the TSA document.

The document, which the two bloggers published within minutes of each other Dec. 27, was sent by TSA to airlines and airports around the world and described temporary new requirements for screening passengers through Dec. 30, including conducting “pat-downs” of legs and torsos. The document, which was not classified, was posted by numerous bloggers. Information from it was also published on some airline websites.

“They’re saying it’s a security document but it was sent to every airport and airline,” says Steven Frischling, one of the bloggers. “It was sent to Islamabad, to Riyadh and to Nigeria. So they’re looking for information about a security document sent to 10,000-plus people internationally. You can’t have a right to expect privacy after that.”

The bloggers report of the incident is here.

I keep wondering if I’ll get a knock on my bunker door next. Apparently I haven’t been trying hard enough to be at the top of the list.

Increased restrictions didn’t prevent mass shooting

Finland had a mass shooting this morning:

Four people were killed when a gunman opened fire at a Finnish shopping mall on Thursday, police said, in the country’s third multiple shooting incident in as many years.

My sympathy is for the victims, their friends, and their families.

I have no sympathy for the politicians and their supporters who did precisely the wrong thing when they got a couple hints they had problems:

Finland was rocked by two school shootings in 2007 and 2008, after which it tightened gun control regulations.

This is despite what they apparently know is the proper solution to someone shooting up innocent people:

That’s right, men and women who have the will, training, and tools to stop the perpetrator. In the mall shootings that I am familar with in this country the shooter was stopped by a private citizen in the mall with a gun. How many more people have to die before the rest of the world learns that lesson?

Product Manager needed for firearms

Via the WA CCW email list I found out a firearms related company in Greensboro North Carolina is looking for a new PM:

As a strategic leader within the organization, the Director of Product Management is required to manage and insure the profitability and competitive positioning of firearms products within the assigned category in the commercial sporting goods market, and to act as a steward to insure the long-term effectiveness of firearms products by performing the following duties personally or through subordinate supervisors. This position is responsible for understanding the target market and keeping the product line competitive on both price and features with key responsibility for the profitability of the product line. The ability to develop and produce strategic planning documents is required. Must be able to understand financial reporting and prepare and explain financial analysis to measure project performance. Must be able to prepare and deliver presentation materials to senior level management. Must have a solid understanding and grasp of technical concepts as they relate to product design and manufacturing. Requires 30%-40% domestic travel and some international travel may be required.

I wonder who it is. Para-USA is in Pineville NC but they are 100 miles away and doesn’t have the position listed on their website.

Quote of the day–Bruce Schneier

Only one carry on? No electronics for the first hour of flight? I wish that, just once, some terrorist would try something that you can only foil by upgrading the passengers to first class and giving them free drinks.

Bruce Schneier
December 26, 2009
Separating Explosives from the Detonator
[I think the problem is that people don't feel an increased level of security unless restrictions are increased. Sort of like a child's blanket or a parents arms. When the child is wrapped up and held tightly they feel the most secure. The problem is that people don't seem to realize government is not a parent. It is force, like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master.--Joe]

Does this Mean We Should Encourage R. O’Donnell to Buy More Spoons?

Not that it would surprise anyone who’s been seeking facts, but murder is down while gun and ammo sales are way up.  NRA’s ILA discusses the latest FBI crime report.  They link to this tidbit also.  Wow– what happened in 2006?  See that little spike in the last quarter of 2001?  We felt that one, so we already knew about it.  We has recently started selling our ground breaking AK optic mount, and people started buying them up in droves after 9/11, along with high-end optics.  You attack the U.S. and we prepare to respond as individuals, should individual action become necessary.  That is as intended by our nation’s founders.

I’d like to have seen some mention of the word “rights” or of the second amendment, and how a right is not contingent upon certain crime rate parameters, but the ILA article will have to do.  I can help them understand things a bit further;

At the expense of undercutting a future post I have planned, here’s the danger in these types of arguments; crime will at some point rise.  For one reason or another, these things cycle up and down.  If you place too much stock in the assertion that gun rights should be protected because crime is dropping while gun ownership is rising, you’ll eventually lose that argument and have to start over with a different one, in danger of looking like a hypocrite (Republicans? Are you listening?).  Crime will increase and gun buying will at some stage decrease, and they will probably at some other point happen both at the same time.

If violent crime were high and increasing, wouldn’t access to the tools of self defense be that much more important?  Hmmm?  And again I ask; Hmmm?

Principles.  It can’t be overstated.  Gun rights should be protected because a right is a right.  Violators of rights should be punished because they are criminals and we can’t afford to tolerate criminals.  Principles don’t change with the ebb and flow of statistics just as Rosie would have gotten fat with or without legal access to a spoon.

Gray areas

Sebastian posted a very important piece about what MAIG is up to. It’s important stuff but that is his domain and I don’t have the time to get up to speed on MAIG enough to contribute anything of importance to his analysis. But I do want to outline a thought experiments a point from his post brought up:

Require REAL ID compliant identification for all gun purchasers. Those in non-complying states, which are many, will no longer be permitted to buy firearms.

If a person is walking down the street with no suspicious behavior or other reasonable cause to detain that person they are not allowed to demand identification, correct? People go jogging without ID all the time right? The police don’t stop you and demand, “Papers!” in this country. I’m pretty sure that is unconstitutional.

Most states have no laws against open carry and the Second Amendment may even guarantee that as a specific enumerated right.

Therefore, you must be allowed to openly carry a firearm without carrying identification. The police must presume someone is innocent until they have probable cause to believe you are a suspect in a crime or have intent to commit a crime. Right?

If the police cannot demand identification from a person for engaging in what appears to be a legal activity then a private citizen cannot do that either, correct? And for the legislature to demand a private citizen do that as a proxy for the police would be unconstitutional as well, correct?

So when a person, who appears to be of legal age, walks into a store and buys some ammunition can the store owner be compelled to demand identification? If so, then what is the difference that enables this?

Taking this one step further, change the ammunition purchase to a firearm purchase.

At what point did a threshold get crossed and what is the constitutional principle that allowed the legislature to compel a private citizen to demand ID for someone apparently engaging in a specific enumerated right?

It was over before it started

As I said a couple weeks ago they were going to lose on this one. It appears they are admitting defeat already:

You would think that if ever there was a political climate favorable for gun control legislation, it would be here. With the state reeling from the third police killing in two months, legislators surely feel the need to do something. A proposed assault weapons ban, to be introduced in the coming legislative session, would seem like a place to start.

Yet only one week after Washington CeaseFire held a press conference to announce the planned bill, its prospects look dim. “Frustrating, that would be the word,” CeaseFire president Ralph Fascitelli says, speaking of the reaction he’s getting from key politicians as he lobbies for the proposal.

“We don’t have the votes,” he recalls House Speaker Frank Chopp telling him recently. Fascitelli says the powerful Seattle Democrat alluded to a bloc of approximately 20 representatives in his party who are opposed to gun control legislation. In any case, Chopp told Fascitelli, he was preoccupied by the budget and upcoming elections.

Contrary to a report last week in the Seattle Times, the Seattle Police Department has not officially come out in favor of an assault weapons ban although it is “supportive of the work CeaseFire is doing,” according to spokesperson Mark Jamieson. “We understand that discussion of gun rights legislation is polarizing,” he says.

While the bill has yet to be introduced and debated, Fascitelli already sounds bitter. When it comes to gun control, he says, “there is no leadership in this state.”

A frustrated, bitter bigot. Sounds like we are doing something right in this state.

Quote of the day–Il_Deuce

Kill all gun owners.

Il_Deuce
December 15, 2009
Comment to Gun prohibitionists reveal strategy of upcoming attack.
[Sounds a lot like what people have said about Jews, homosexuals, and blacks over the years. And sometimes people tried to actually do just that--after they took the guns away from them.

A suggestion to Il_Deuce--bring your own body bag when you start that little project of yours.--Joe]

Interesting question

I wonder what made them think to ask this question?

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Oh, in case you didn’t know–it was PETN that the guy tried to take down the plane in Detroit a couple days ago.

Quote of the day–Sebastian

One of the things that’s always been amazing about the left is that they do such an effective job of making people’s paranoid delusions seem to not, in fact, be paranoid delusions.

Sebastian
December 28, 2009
Hope and Change
[It's pretty amazing alright. It's this sort of thing that further encourages me to invest in precious metals such as brass and copper coated lead.--Joe]

Another STI repair

A couple months ago I mentioned a had a problem with two new magazines dropping out of my STI. Today I finally got around to fixing it.

I had measured the magazines and found they were 0.020″ narrower than the magazines that worked. It had to be the magazine release. So I bought a new magazine release (on the left below) and compared it to the old one (on the right).

Near the top of the picture compare the width of the material for the little “ledge”. The old one is much narrower. That is what engages the magazine. The old one is worn enough that it does not fully engage the magazine.

I replaced the release, took the gun and magazines to the range and put a couple hundred rounds through the gun without any problems other than one of my old magazines failing to lock the slide back on the last round. Yeah, I know the magazine followers are worn out. I’ll order some new ones and replace them soon. But that is a minor problem compared to the magazines falling out on the first shot.

I’ll do more field testing at the steel match tomorrow but I fully expect the magazine drop problem is fixed now.