January 10, 2011
Anti-Second Amendment Extremists Exploit Tucson Shootings
Posted by Van Helsing at January 10, 2011 9:05 AM
Sadly, anti-Second Amendment crusaders didn't wait for the bodies to cool before cashing in on the tragedy in Tucson.
One of the fiercest gun-control advocates in Congress, Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), pounced on the shooting massacre in Tucson Sunday, promising to introduce legislation as soon as Monday targeting the high-capacity ammunition the gunman used. …
Many said that people with a history of mental instability, like the alleged shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, should not be able to buy a gun — and no one should be able to buy stockpiles of ammunition used by the 22-year-old assailant.
This is called passing from the acceptable to the dubious. Keeping guns away from violent lunatics is a great idea, so long as it can be done without trampling on the rights of the rest of us. Preventing normal Americans from storing ammunition is pure and simple tyranny. Only with the public whipped up in a highly emotional state would extremists stand the slightest chance of pushing through such an outrage, which is why McCarthy is acting so fast.
Regrettably she isn't the only opportunist:
Another vocal supporter for gun control, Illinois Rep. Mike Quigley, told POLITICO that he hopes "something good" can come from the Arizona tragedy — perhaps discussion on a new assault weapon ban, sales at gun shows and tracing measures.
As always, the New York Times is providing propaganda support for statist authoritarians. An excruciatingly moronic editorial by Gail Collins begins like this:
In 2009, Gabrielle Giffords was holding a "Congress on Your Corner" meeting at a Safeway supermarket in her district when a protester, who was waving a sign that said "Don't Tread on Me," waved a little too strenuously. The pistol he was carrying under his armpit fell out of his holster.
"It bounced. That concerned me," Rudy Ruiz, the father of one of Giffords's college interns at the time, told me then. He had been at the event and had gotten a larger vision than he had anticipated of what a career in politics entailed. "I just thought, 'What would happen if it had gone off? Could my daughter have gotten hurt?' "
This is like fretting that a truck might accidentally start driving by itself and run someone over. You can drop a Glock all day; it won't go off until you pull the trigger. But all a NY Slimes columnist knows about firearms is that lawful citizens shouldn't have them. The unsubtle attempt to associate Loughner with the Tea Party despite any evidence or likelihood of a connection is contemptible, but to be expected from the erstwhile "Paper of Record."
Collins goes on to accuse the NRA of being motivated by capitalism. What more can you expect of this sad Marxist remnant of a newspaper?
Posted by ShaunKranish on Wednesday, January 12, 2011 @ 09:22:41 CST (5894 reads)
Our very own Mike Basche was at the Illinois 8th district US Congressional debate being held at Grayslake Centra High (PUBLIC school) tonight - Wednesday Oct 20, 2010. One of the audience members asked the forum leader if the pledge of allegiance would be said before the forum started, to which the forum leader responded "no, it will not." Later she said, "I have absolutely nothing FOR or against saying the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of something like this..." (perhaps this is a real sign of the pride people have in their Republic these days?)
The crowd then takes matters into their own hands and begins reciting the pledge together!!! You can't find a more moving video than this. This could very well go viral - indeed it's the kind of video that needs to.
Then Mike was escorted out because he was recording. Keep in mind this is PUBLIC property and these are PUBLIC officials and PUBLIC figures. There is absolutely no reason not to let people record. It's one thing if phones are ringing and disturbing things, it's quite another to simply record. Recording does not disturb or affect the process at all. I'm sure incumbent Melissa Bean (soon to be ex-representative of the 8th district) insisted on this. She knows America is tired of the socialism, the nanny state, the spending, and gun control.
"I have to say that being forced by having audience members stand up in presumably a planned way...seems a bit disrespectful." The forum leader is so inept and out of tune to think this was staged or say this (does she really believe it?). Why is the Pledge so offensive? In the amount of time she spent talking about how the pledge should not have been said, the Pledge could have been said probably three dozen more times!! Clearly time wasn't the reason...What is going on in this country.
Thank you Mike for capturing this - this is incredible. The words of the forum leader droning on and on about it are actually quite freaky. How can you argue with the Pledge of Allegiance? Everyone wanted to do it - they did - so just move on. It's very Orwellian to hear her disregard the flag, the pledge to the Republic, and patriotism. Obviously a lot of people are moved right now to make right the many wrongs those in power have perpetrated on us. It's showing, and it's powerful!!!!
Posted by ShaunKranish on Wednesday, October 20, 2010 @ 23:21:01 CDT (6277 reads)
A Clark County judge says Wisconsin’s ban on carrying concealed weapons is unconstitutional. In the case, authorities charged a Sauk City man with carrying a concealed weapon, after he admitted he had a knife in his waistband. He never threatened anyone. In light of the landmark Supreme Court ruling in McDonald v. City of Chicago, attorney William Poss filed a motion to dismiss the case on constitutional grounds. Judge Jon Counsell obliged Wednesday, ruling the law is overly broad and violates both the Second and Fourteenth Amendments of the Constitution.
“The government has to have a compelling state interest to do so (restrict the right to carry) and they have to have the least restrictive means of doing that,” said Poss. “Public safety obviously is a state interest, but there’s all kinds of ways to do that in this regard.” In his decision, Counsell states the law forces citizens to “go unarmed (thus not able to act in self defense), violate the law or carry openly,” but notes displaying weapon’s openly isn’t a “realistic alternative.”
As of now, the decision only sets a precedent in Counsell’s court, but Poss expects the case will be appealed. “It’s ultimately going to get to either the Wisconsin Supreme Court and or the United States Supreme Court one way or another,” he predicted. The decision was disseminated around the state Wednesday, and Poss already had 50 congratulatory phone messages or e-mails from colleagues by Wednesday afternoon. “There’s a lot of interest in this obviously,” he said. “It’s not a left or right type of thing quite frankly. It’s a liberty thing.”
Clark County Assistant District Attorney Dick Lewis said he has 20 days to appeal the ruling, and no decision has been made. Wisconsin is one of only two states which completely ban carrying concealed weapons.
ICarry's notes: You can bet your last dollar that this is one of the final nails in the coffin of Wisconsin's draconian blanket ban on carrying a concealed firearm. Gun control is dying out everywhere it seems - what a great year 2010 has been!!! 2011 should be even more fun!!!
Gosh it feels good to be right!! Gun control laws punish otherwise non-criminal behavior of law-abiding citizens minding their own business and exercising their right to having the means to defend themselves. They don't deter criminals, but rather encourage them. They make everyone more vulnerable, putting everyone at greater risk.
Finally, things are changing rapidly thanks to the Supreme Court spelling out the term FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT for those didn't get it before. Frankly, people who don't understand this concept have a lot of soul-searching to do. A part of their brain is on "sleep mode" and needs to be started up. They can't all be saved and understand inhere, unalienable human rights, but perhaps they will understand that wind has changed and gun control is a loser. Perhaps they will finally give up and move onto other fronts of assaulting freedom - like banning light bulbs, trans fats, or taxing air.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Sunday, October 17, 2010 @ 02:47:48 CDT (6478 reads)
US and European officials said Tuesday they have detected a plot to carry out a major, coordinated series of commando-style terror attacks in Britain, France, Germany and possibly the United States.
A senior US official said that while there is a "credible" threat, no specific time or place is known. President Obama has been briefed about the threat, say senior US officials.
Intelligence and law enforcement authorities in the US and Europe said the threat information is based on the interrogation of a suspected German terrorist allegedly captured on his way to Europe in late summer and now being held at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.
US law enforcement officials say they have been told the terrorists were planning a series of "Mumbai-style" commando raids on what were termed "economic or soft" targets in the countries. Pakistani militants killed 173 people with guns and grenades during the 2008 attacks in Mumbai, India.
In testimony before Congress last week, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said, "We are all seeing increased activity by a more diverse set of groups and a more diverse set of threats."
Officials in France have put the country on high alert for a terror attack and authorities in Paris shut down the Eiffel Tower for the second time in two weeks today after what was termed a "false alarm."
ICarry.org commentary: 10 gunmen supposedly killed 173 people in Mumbai. That is an average of over 17 kills per gunman. I wonder how they would have faired against armed citizens? Try that in Vermont, Alaska, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, or the dozens of other states that have armed citizenry!!!
If a terrorist wanted to commit these types of attacks, I can bet you they would target a state like Illinois or Wisconsin, New York, New Jersey, or some other anti-rights state that prohibits self-defense. They would also probably target a school, church, or government building that bans guns. The so-called "Gun Free Zones" make the best targets for this kind of thing. It's hard for one terrorist to kill 17 people if some of those people are armed. When they are all defenseless, it's very easy!
We've been telling people this for years. We were talking about gun free zones back in 2005 when we started. People ought to start listening!!!! We predicted an event like the NIU shooting in Illinois, and it happened. This is reason enough right here to exercise what the US Supreme Court has said is a fundamental right - the right to bear arms!!!
Posted by ShaunKranish on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 @ 22:35:16 CDT (12721 reads)
Please use this link to donate to Wisconsin Carry, Inc's efforts in bringing suits against the City of Madison, Madison Police, Police Chief, and anyone else culpable (ICarry is making assumptions as to whom the defendants may be).
This is for the 5 men arrested for open carrying, minding their own business. They were NOT staging anything or trying to get arrested. Some of these men are known to us personally, and we know their intentions were nothing more than to meet with one another, share a meal and conversation, and be able to exercise their fundamental right to bear arms. These open carry meet-ups are happening everywhere, and this one was no different.
Someone called the police to inquire as to whether or not what they were doing (simply openly carrying pistols) is legal. Instead of informing the caller that it is, and asking the caller if anything else seems out of place, Madison PD sent 8 officers there to harass, intimidate, and violate many rights of the citizens.
Wisconsin Carry, Inc. has tried to solve this diplomatically, but Madison Police Chief Noble Wray has simply declared all-out war by charging all 5 men with disorderly conduct, despite the Wisconsin Attorney General stating that open carry is not disorderly conduct and should not be prosecuted!
Separately and privately, to no one else's knowledge, ICarry.org contacted Madison Police Chief Wray. We had a good conversation with him, and tried our best to make progress to deescalate this situation and get the police and law-abiding gun owners back on the same page. Chief Wray failed to mention his decision to charge all 5 men with disorderly conduct. Needless to say, we are very disappointed by this reaction of his, and we look forward to the day in court everyone will have.
We are calling on the entire country - particularly the grassroots gun rights groups like Wisconsin Carry and ICarry.org who really make the difference these days for support in this. Wisconsin is a most pivotal piece in the countrywide Right to Carry movement. Wisconsin is one of only 2 states left with completely concealed carry prohibition. As such, Open Carry has grown into a sensational movement unlike anywhere else in the nation.
All attempts will be made to transform Wisconsin into a state where law-abiding can choose which method to carry - open or concealed - based on what suits their needs and personal preferences. All attempts will be made to see this choice be a real right - no permit or license required - like Alaska, Vermont, and now Arizona.
Wisconsin can go from red to green on the Right to Carry map in one sure step after the upcoming election.
ICarry.org has witnessed countless open carry events - picnics, litter pickups, food drives, rallies, and simple casual get-togethers. These events are very spontaneous - anyone can decide to start one somewhere and people from nearby show up. Through these events, patriotic supporters of the right to bear arms have gotten to know one another, shared personal experiences, shared knowledge and education, comradery, and hopes.
Wisconsin Carry, Inc. has taken the lead to promote the safe and lawful exercise of rights for self-defense, educating the public, and staunch defense of open carry in Wisconsin. Through numerous lawsuits challenging things like the unconstitutional "gun-free school zones" relic law in Wisconsin, to blatant violations of an individual's rights, they have proven themselves to be an organization of action - not of words or politics.
ICarry.org considers Wisconsin Carry, Inc. to be one of the finest firearms rights organizations in the country. We consider ourselves blessed to work in the same state as them, assist them when possible, and simply share the Wisconsin Open Carry experience with them.
Please help us take the Wisconsin example beyond the border to the many states that need carry law reform. The right to carry is sweeping the nation, and the adamant defense of that right by organizations like Wisconsin Carry is creating the possibility for countrywide recognition of the fundamental right of peaceable citizens to bear arms - no questions asked.
Please help ICarry.org raise $5,000 for Wisconsin Carry's lawsuit and injunction against the City of Madison today. It will make a difference for all states!
Senate Scheduled to Vote on anti-Free Speech Bill -- DISCLOSE Act Vote Set For Thursday
Gun Owners of America E-Mail Alert 8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151 Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408 http://gunowners.org
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Anti-gun Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (NV) is giving voters yet another reason why he must be defeated in November.
Preparing for heavy losses in the general election, anti-gun Democrat leaders like Reid and Charles Schumer (D-NY) appear to be readying for a vote on the so-called DISCLOSE Act, possibly this week.
While Reid has not yet officially taken the necessary steps to move the bill, his communications director sent out this Tweet on Tuesday: "We're debating DISCLOSE Act tomorrow [Wednesday] w/ vote Thursday."
You may recall that the DISCLOSE Act, which passed the House in June, died in the Senate in July after an intense lobbying effort by Gun Owners of America and other groups.
The bill, sponsored by Schumer, puts severe and unconstitutional limits on GOA's ability to hold individual congressmen accountable in the weeks leading up to an election.
Instead of protecting the most important type of speech protected by the First Amendment -- political speech -- this bill would force groups like GOA to "disclose" the names of donors in certain political advertisements.
Since Gun Owners of America is not willing to disclose its membership lists to the Federal Election Commission, we could be prohibited from running radio or TV ads exposing a federal candidate's voting record within 60 days of a general election.
This is just another attempt by pathetic, anti-gun politicians to save their jobs before the political earthquake in November strikes.
And, as has been the case so often over the past two years, Reid, Schumer and Co. are using the rules of the Senate to bring the bill directly to the floor. There have been no committee hearings to debate the merits of the bill, thus the American people have no opportunity to see just how egregiously DISCLOSE violates the Constitution.
While the bill does contain a controversial provision to exempt the National Rifle Association, GOA remains adamantly opposed to it on constitutional grounds.
Please urge your Senators to protect ALL of the Bill of Rights. Remind them that your ability to protect the Second Amendment relies on the safeguards of the First Amendment.
I stand with Gun Owners of America in opposing Senator Schumer's so-called DISCLOSE Act.
This bill was defeated once in the Senate, but now anti-gun Majority Leader Harry Reid plans to bring it back to the floor for another vote.
The DISCLOSE Act is just another attempt by politicians to cling to their jobs by silencing groups like Gun Owners of America.
And, as has been the case so often over the past two years, Reid, Schumer and Co. are using the rules of the Senate to bring the bill directly to the floor. There have been no committee hearings to debate the merits of the bill, thus the American people have no opportunity to see just how the ironically named DISCLOSE Act violates the Constitution.
Gun Owners of America represents the views of hundreds of thousands of Second Amendment supporters. Any bill that squelched the free speech rights of groups like GOA is also an attack on my rights.
Please vote NO on Sen. Schumer's DISCLOSE Act.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Wednesday, September 22, 2010 @ 13:39:47 CDT (6518 reads)
ICarry.org - Sept 20, 2010 Breaking News Release: Lessons from Wisconsin's Last Incident of Police Harassment of Citizens Lawfully Carrying Firearms in the Open
On Saturday, September 18th, a group of five responsible firearms owners gathered to share company and conversation at Culvers on Town Blvd in Madison, Wisconsin. Approximately eight Madison police officers approached the firearms owners who were enjoying food and discussion with one another.
Demanding identification of the gun owners, officers used intimidation and coercion in attempts to force the citizens to provide ID. State law does not allow officers to demand ID in circumstances like this, and Madison PD’s very own “legal updates” explains exactly why refusing to provide ID is not “obstructing.”
Despite this well-known aspect of law, at least two of the law-abiding firearms owners were arrested and cited with “obstructing” charges for not providing ID. All of the citizens were harassed in public, intimidated and coerced, and inconvenienced and humiliated by the disrespectful, diminishing, and suppressive behavior of Madison police officers.
ICarry.org would first like to thank Wisconsin Carry, Inc. for its steadfast resolve to protect citizens’ rights in Wisconsin. ICarry.org is committed to supporting Wisconsin Carry, Inc. and all responsible firearms owners in the state.
The vast majority of officers are well-trained to respect the rights of citizens openly carrying firearms. Over the past few years in Wisconsin, a great deal of education has been provided for police, and police throughout the state have been exhibiting exemplary performance. There have been only a select few isolated incidents of failure of training or behavioral problems with police.
ICarry.org would like to see this incident be the last. It’s time to accept and embrace the lawful practice of open carry. There is no need to discriminate or profile against open carriers – they should be afforded the same level of dignity and respect as all other peaceful citizens. Like police officers, they too carry a sidearm only for self-protection.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Sunday, September 19, 2010 @ 19:49:03 CDT (5711 reads)
Gun rights advocates are up in arms that a Texas gun dealer was sentenced to six months in prison for selling a firearm to an illegal immigrant, but a "middle-man" who bought the gun for the immigrant -- and who was in the U.S. illegally himself, but had a valid driver's license -- was never arrested, charged or deported in the case.
Paul Copeland, 56, a Vietnam veteran, was sentenced to prison time and two years probation in federal court last week for selling a gun to an undocumented alien, Hipolito Aviles, at the Texas Gun Show in Austin in January.
But Aviles wasn't the man who handed Copeland the money for the gun. That man was Leonel Huerta Sr., who presented as identification the valid Texas driver's license he had obtained before his visa expired in 2007.
Copeland claimed he was presented with a valid driver's license and had no way of knowing that the man he was selling the gun to was an illegal immigrant, or that he intended to give the gun to another illegal immigrant.
Huerta, in aphone interviewwith Copeland's attorney that was included in court documents, said he showed Copeland his driver's license in order to purchase the gun, and it wasn't until he was leaving the building that he handed the gun to Aviles.
But agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives testified that Copeland should have known that Huerta was buying the gun for Aviles.
"Agents witnessed the Defendant (Copeland) negotiate a price for a handgun with Hipolito Aviles, who then handed cash to a second Hispanic male, who then handed Aviles' cash and his own identification to the defendant," the prosecution said incourt documents.
"The Defendant in turn sold the firearm and handed it to the 'straw' purchaser, who then handed the firearm to Hipolito Aviles. The Defendant then instructed Mr. Aviles to hand the firearm back to the straw purchaser because he had 'bought' the firearm. Agents witnessed the straw purchaser hand the firearm back to Hipolito Aviles a short time later."
Aviles, the undocumented immigrant, was charged with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, served a little over six months in prison and was deported on July 8, U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Daryl Fields said.
But Huerta, the "middle man" who bought the gun for Aviles and also was in the country illegally, suffered no legal consequences in the case. He is believed to still be living in the country illegally.
"Instead of busting the illegal alien for buying, they bust the citizen for selling," said Paul Velte, founder of Peaceable Texans for Firearms Rights, a gun-owners rights advocacy group from Austin.
Copeland, in an interview with FoxNews.com, said he and several other witnesses, including Aviles and Huerta's son, who was present during the gun purchase, testified that the men never exchanged money in front of him. He said that throughout the purchase, he either talked with Huerta, who he says "spoke perfect English," or to the group in general, but never to Aviles directly.
"I never conversed with Hipolito at all," Copeland said. "The gentleman claims that he doesn't speak any English."
But one thing all sides agreed on is that Huerta, using a valid Texas driver's license, knowingly bought a gun for someone who was ineligible to buy one himself -- all the while knowing that he, too, was in the country illegally.
"SA [Special Agent] Jones interviewed Huerta, using an interpreter, and learned that he is also illegally in the United States and he showed SA Jones a work visa that expired in 2007," ATF wrote inits report of the incident."SA Jones further interviewed Huerta and learned that he had just met Aviles for the first time at the gun show and he agreed to help Aviles purchase a gun because Aviles did not have proper identification."
But, unlike Aviles, Huerta was not arrested at the gun show that day. And though the report said he was "to be indicted," the ATF said he was never charged in the case.
"Apparently, Huerta was not charged because he was a witness," ATF spokeswoman Franceska Perot told FoxNews.com, adding that the bureau referred the case to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. ICE spokeswoman Gail Montenegro said there was no record of Huerta in ICE's system, indicating that there is no effort underway to deport him.
Perot said that, to her understanding, Huerta wasn't arrested at the gun show because agents there felt "he was just a go-between for Aviles." She said she couldn't say specifically why the decision was made not to prosecute him later, other than to say that situations like this happen all the time.
"It's a prosecutorial decision. They decide, are we going to get more time for this guy, for his part, or are we going to use him as a witness for someone else? So I guess that was their decision," she said.
Velte says that decision should "enrage all Americans."
"The illegal alien walks free, but the citizen gets convicted," he said. "The same government charged with controlling immigration is the one using illegal immigrants to attack its own citizens. Does this make any sense?"
When asked about Huerta, the U.S. Attorney's Office said, "we do not comment about our prosecutorial decision making process."
Attempts to contact Huerta were unsuccessful.
As for Copeland, Perot said he may not like the verdict in his case, but it was issued by a jury fair and square.
"He was found guilty by a jury, so if he feels like he was unfairly tried then there's an appeals process for that," she said.
Copeland says he intends to explore that process to the fullest.
"The appeal's being filed as we speak," he said.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Monday, September 13, 2010 @ 21:08:18 CDT (6477 reads)
This information has been available for a long time, but not widely-known. At ICarry.org, we feel this article is a must read for every supporter of the right to own and carry firearms. People often wonder how the federal government gets away with complete and utter regulation of the legal firearms trade in America, because the Constitution does not grant it any authority in this area (indeed, it is expressly prohibited for the federal government to infringe upon the rights of peaceable citizens to own and carry firearms).
Well, through a little legal trickery, a perversion of law and the Constitution, the federal government misapplies laws to citizens operating on land (areas within the several states of the union) that the federal government has no authority (not even through the interstate commerce clause) to operate on. Grab some popcorn, and read very carefully!
Where does the federal government get its Constitutional authority to enact laws such as the National Firearms Act, which has been codified to Chapter 44 of Title 18 of the United States Code? Upon whom are such laws operative, and where? Since a careful reading of the Constitution reveals that the federal government has no specifically delegated authority to regulate firearms, from where does the federal government's authority to regulate firearms come?
One would think with the high number of Americans supporting the right to keep and bear arms, this question is one that would be of some concern. We've never heard the question asked. One would think that the firearms industry would ask such a question if for no other reason than that they will surely be an industry of the past if anti-gun legislation continues to propagate. In other words, without a solution, the firearms industry as we know it today will cease to exist.
Over the last 30 years or so, laws concerning firearms have become a matter of "public policy", with no regard for the Constitutional elements involved. Why aren't more Americans challenging federal gun laws? We believe it is because The People of this great nation have an innate understanding that the federal judiciary is corrupt and will not honor the Constitution when required to do so.
We also believe that Americans are not willing to challenge federal firearms laws because over the last 40 years or so, laws have been written in an ever-increasingly deceptive manner. Even laws that were clear when originally enacted have been amended over the last 40 years to remove the specificity of the law and render them more vague, and more prone to "flexible" interpretations by "cooperative" judges. Ironically, this has been done under the guise of making these laws more clear! As many laws stand today, the average American cannot understand them and attorneys generally will not explain the true meaning, lest they lose their monopolistic advantage over the machinery of the legal system.
The Federal Firearms Act (as amended)
(18 USC, Chapter 44)
Try as you might to find the title, "Federal Firearms Act" associated with 18 USC, chapter 44, you will not. Why then do we refer to it as such here? Many of the provisions that are currently codified to Title 18, chapter 44, were not originally codified there.
The Federal Firearms Act was enacted in 1938 and it was originally codified to Title 15. So what is Title 15? It is entitled "Commerce and Trade". Do you remember that little discussion about creating vagueness where none originally existed? Well here is a stunning example. From 1938 until 1968, the Federal Firearms Act was within Title 15. That's 30 years folks! Despite the law operating just fine for 30 years, someone deemed it no longer proper to have the law contained within Title 15. Want to guess why? That's right - the government's jurisdictional limits were far too easy to ascertain when the law was within the "Commerce and Trade" title. If it wasn't moving in interstate or foreign commerce, then the US didn't have jurisdiction over it! However, by moving the Act to Title 18, and thus disconnecting the Act from the Title of "Commerce and Trade", there are few clues left to the law's original intent and its Constitutional limitations.
Despite the fact that chapter 44 of Title 18 has been amended many times, (most notably by the Gun Control Act of 1968) it is still essentially the Federal Firearms Act of 1938 [ch. 850, 52 Stat. 1252].
Having said all this, there is an interesting element to Chapter 44 and its interstate commerce authority that you should know about.
There are two different definitions for interstate and foreign commerce in Title 18. The first is found in §10 of the Title and is the definition that is generally applicable through the entire Title, unless re-defined for a specific chapter or section of the Title.
18 USC §10: The term ''interstate commerce'', as used in this title, includes commerce between one State, Territory, Possession, or the District of Columbia and another State, Territory, Possession, or the District of Columbia. The term ''foreign commerce'', as used in this title, includes commerce with a foreign country.
This is a pretty clear definition - and it will get clearer as this article proceeds!
Interestingly, "interstate commerce" and "foreign commerce" are redefined just for chapter 44.For use within chapter 44, they are no longer two separate items, but have been combined into one legal term, to wit:
18 USC §921(2) The term ''interstate or foreign commerce'' includes commerce betweenanyplacein a Stateandanyplaceoutside of that State, or within any possession of the United States (not including the Canal Zone) or the District of Columbia, but such term does not include commerce between places within the same State but through any place outside of that State. The term ''State'' includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the possessions of the United States (not including the Canal Zone).
[emphasis and underlining added]
You should recognize that as alegal term, the phrase "interstate or foreign commerce" doesnotmean what logic might tell you it means.You must remember that it meansonlywhat Congress says it means and nothing more!
We have had to ask ourselves why the general definition provided in §10 was inadequate for use within chapter 44. If §10 was a good enough definition for all of Title 18 generally, why is it not adequate for chapter 44?
The only distinction we find is in the use of the words "...any placein a State...". Why is that change so essential? Why go through the hassle of altering the definition just to add two little words? On the surface it doesn't seem to make sense - or does it? Maybe we should ask what "placewithin a State" might the definition be referring to, and why would that distinction be important? Let's explore!
Title 18, §13 is a general provision section (which means it is operative throughout the Title) and is entitled "Laws of States adopted for areas within Federal jurisdiction". What does that title mean? One of the things it means is that there is "State jurisdiction" and there is "federal jurisdiction", and the two arenotthe same.
Before we explore §13 any further, we need to take a brief side trip and look at §7. We need to do this because §7 is specifically referred to in §13, and we'll get lost if we don't understand exactly what is being referred to in §7.
Section 7 defines the "Special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States". Although the definition is a bit long and wordy, here is the essential part in reference to what we are discussing in this article:
18 USC §7(3): Any lands reserved or acquired for the use of the United States, and under the exclusive or concurrent jurisdiction thereof, orany place purchased or otherwise acquired by the United States by consent of the legislature of the State in which the same shall be, for the erection of a fort, magazine, arsenal, dockyard, or other needful building.
The basic meaning of that definition is any location that is not under State sovereignty, but solely under federal sovereignty, or otherwise within federal jurisdiction.It must be remembered that such federal "places" existwithinthe states of the Union.
One should take note of the common language, and common meaning, between 18 USC §7, and Article I, Section 8, Clause 17 of the US Constitution:
To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such district (not exceeding ten miles square) as may by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of the government of the United States, and to exercise like authority overall places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same [federal place] shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dock-yards, and other needful buildings
Now that you can clearly see where §7 is taking us, let's go back to §13; specifically, subsection (a).
[Editor's Note:We've removed some of the excessive wordiness from §13(a) that might tend to confuse the meaning for the first-time reader.]
18 USC §13(a): Whoever within...any places...provided in section 7 of this title...not within thejurisdictionof any State...is guilty of any act or omission which, although not made punishable by any enactment of Congress, would be punishable if committed or omittedwithin the jurisdiction of the State...in which suchplaceis situated...
Ah ha!Did you get that? Ladies and gentlemen, §13 (in conjunction with §7) defines the "places" that are referred to in the definition of "interstate or foreign commerce" at §921(2). Theplacesmade mention of in §921(2) are the "places...provided in section 7 of this title", which of course we now know are federal lands (and waterways) that are not within the jurisdiction of the State, but are within the geographical boundaries of the State!
Now let's do a little of our own alteration to §921(2). Let's add the specificity that the legislative draftsmenintentionallyleft out when they wrote the definition of "interstate and foreign commerce" (at §921(2)). Our "clarified" version reads like this:
The term ''interstate or foreign commerce'' includes commerce between any area of land under federal jurisdiction that is within a State and any area of land under federal jurisdiction that is outside that State, or within any possession of the United States (not including the Canal Zone) or the District of Columbia.
Boy, that sure changes the meaning that you had of §921(2) about 10 minutes ago, doesn't it? Also, please note that after the part of the definition that addresses "States" is complete, it goes on to define other federal areas. In that portion, "interstate or foreign commerce" means commerce [solely]withinany possession of the United States or within the District of Columbia! My, my, my. Congress sure defines terms to mean whatever the hell Congress wants them to mean!
Are you getting the picture? Every "place" being referred to in §921(2) is a place within a State, or outside a State, that is under the exclusive legislative jurisdiction of Congress, pursuant to Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17 of the US Constitution. Andthe "interstate and foreign commerce" being described at §921(2), is a limited form that operates only between such "places". For the purposes of chapter 44, Congress has even defined "State" as "the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the possessions of the United States". In short, it's all territorial.
The definition of "interstate or foreign commerce", at 921(2), is only a "red herring" placed there by the legislative draftsmen to make you think the authority is nation-wide and all-pervasive under the US Constitution's interstate commerce clause. In point of fact, certain sections of chapter 44, such as 922(o)(1), which makes the mere possession of a machine gun a crime, can only be territorial in nature because Congress has no authority to define any act that takes place within a state of the Union as a crime (except such acts as take place against federal property or persons).The federal government cannot define a crime that would take place within a state of the Union because the US has no police powers in a state of the Union.
Now do you see why it was so important that chapter 44 not use the general definition of "interstate commerce" provided at §10? Two little words - "any place" - needed to be added if the law was to pass Constitutional scrutiny.
If one reads the "Congressional Findings and Declarations" in the notes for §921, one finds that Congress enacted the Federal Firearms Act, and its various amendments, in order to [ostensibly] assist the States in controlling crime. Well guess what?The Constitution does not grant the federal government any authority to assist the States of the Union in combating crime. The federal government may regulate interstate commerce; it can define crimes that may take place upon federal property; and it can exercise police powers within places that are embraced by the "exclusive legislative control" clause,but it may not do any of that upon land that is under the sovereignty of a state of the Union.
Congress is free to make any asinine statement it wants about its "intentions" or its "goals", but the text of the laws it enacts must still adhere to the limits of federal power imposed by US Constitution.
Laws No Longer Printed
You should also be made aware that the historical notes reveal there have been some significant items that were "omitted" when the statutes were transferred from Title 15 to Title 18. It should be noted that there is no legal definition for the word "omit"; therefore it can only be defined by a standard English dictionary. The first definition that appears in Webster's II New Revised University Dictionary (1994) is, "Left out". When a section or portion of a statute is "omitted" it is exactly as Webster has stated - it is merely left out. The section or portion has not been repealed; it is still in full effect - it simply isn't printed in the United States Code any more!
[Editor Note-The original language, in its entirety, can still be found in the original Statute-at-Large. See"What is the United States Code"for more on the Statutes-at-Large.]
So what are these sections that have been left out? The most interesting items left out in 1968 were subsections (f) and (i) of then section 902 (Title 15), which speaks of the rule of "presumption from possession". While we've not looked up the old section 902, our experience with such statutory "presumptions" tells us that the section likely raised a rebuttable presumption that if you were found with any firearm, suppressor, etc., that is defined in [the current] chapter 44, you acquired it through an act of "interstate or foreign commerce". Of course for a presumption to be rebutted, the accused would have to know that the US Attorney's Office and the United States District Court were functioning under a statutorily created presumption to begin with. Needless to say, that's a bit difficult when the law isn't printed in the Code any more!
The other omitted items are subsections (b) and (c) of former section 902 which prohibits, "receipt with knowledge...that the transportation or shipment was to a person without a license whereState lawsrequire prospective purchaser to exhibit a license to licensed manufacturer or dealer, respectively." You've got to love what these guys choose to keep hidden from you!
Hopefully this article has helped you to understand the sophistry used when the legislative draftsmen wrote the text that now appears as chapter 44 of Title 18. Hopefully, this will assist Americans in not being wrongfully prosecuted for crimes they've never committed and hopefully this document will somehow get to the firearms industry, since it is the key to freeing that industry from the stranglehold of "public policy" law that will eventually take the industry's life, and with it the American Citizen's access to at least one form of arms.
Let's review what we've covered:
Title 18 of the United States Code (USC), chapter 44, has its foundation as the Federal Firearms Act.
The Federal Firearms Act was enacted in 1938 and was originally codified to Title 15, "Commerce and Trade".
In 1968, most of the Federal Firearms Act was repealed and reenacted in Title 18.
Certain elements of the Federal Firearms Act were never repealed, but are no longer printed in the USC. [This is why one must always read the actual Act of Congress to see what they're really up to.]
Since 1968, chapter 44 has been amended numerous times, usually under the disingenuous rationale of securing the rights of law abiding gun owners!
The foundation of the federal government's authority in chapter 44 is territorial, i.e., Article I, Section 8, Clause 17 of the US Constitution.
Chapter 44 does contain a certain limited form of commerce authority, but it only controls commerce between federal places within States, or commerce within a federal possession, or the District of Columbia.
The definition of "interstate and foreign commerce" at §921(2) does not refer to the government's Constitutional authority to regulate commerce between the states of the Union. It is a territorial based power that relies on the federal government's police powers, which exist only within those places that are subject to the exclusive legislative authority of Congress.
The "declarations" or "findings" that Congress may issue have absolutely no bearing upon the words of an Act Congress passes. Such declarations and findings may contain any manner of outrageous lies or distortions, but the language of the laws that Congress passes must still adhere to the Constitution.
We've come across a real bulldog in the City of Chicago - a state licensed firearms instructor. Chicagoland Detective Services/Firearm Training on Milwaukee Avenue!!! As a state-licensed firearms training firm, they are exempt from Chicago's gun ordinances. Chicago tried to shut them down long ago, but they prevailed in court and have been operating ever since.
They are offering NRA Basic and First Steps training so Chicago residents can get their Chicago permits. They offer Utah CCW permit classes and processing, armed and unarmed state security training, and much more.
Because Chicagoland Detective Services/Firearm Training has stood up against the city, refusing to fold to pressure to shut down, and continues to train thousands of Chicago-area residents in firearm proficiency, ICarry.org has partnered with them to provide more training to more people with convenient online sign-up!! Get fantastic training and support two organizations that are fighting Chicago to defend your rights.
Chicago and the surrounding areas are the front lines in Illinois fight to restore the protection of the individual's fundamental right to keep AND bear arms. The more training, carry permits, FOID cards, gun ranges and shops, and gun owners we can accumulate in this area, the faster things will change. It's time for gun ownership to come out of the closet. Tell a friend you are proud to exercise the sacred right to self-defense - the right to own and carry a firearm.
Below is some interesting background info on Chicago
The eyes of the country have been on Chicago due to Mayor Daley and his political cohorts refusing to respect the individual's fundamental right to keep and bear arms. Gun owners were forced to take Daley to court - all the way to the US Supreme Court to get him to live up to his oath to UPHOLD and DEFEND the Constitution.
The Supreme Court declared the individual right to keep and bear arms to be a fundamental right, pre-existing to the Constitution itself, and enshrined in the Constitution to protect the individual from the federal government, state governments, and local governments. How did Daley respond?
He said you can now own a pistol, but you can only have 1 usable gun in your home. Your garage, porch, and yard aren't considered part of your home. You can own a pistol, but you can't buy one in the city because gun stores are banned. You MUST get training, and that training MUST include live fire. Firing ranges are also banned, so you will have to travel out of the city to complete your training as well.
Pay us some money - $100 or more - go through all of our paperwork and training, and you can eventually own a gun legally. Do you think that's what the framers of our Constitutional protections had in mind when drafting the 2nd Amendment - the right that SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.
Of course not!!!
ICarry.org, its attorney Walter Maksym of Chicago, and President Joe Franzese, a federally-licensed firearms dealer, were the first to file suit against Chicago after Mayor Daley passed (unanimous vote of city council) his new ordinance.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Friday, September 03, 2010 @ 14:55:02 CDT (9189 reads)
Shaun Kranish, executive director of the gun rights group iCarry.org, videotapes at an open-carry gathering Sunday at the Delavan Starbucks. Dan Plutchak/staff.
DELAVAN -- Several dozen open-carry advocates from throughout Wisconsin and Illinois gathered at the Starbucks here Sunday to socialize while openly carrying holstered handguns. They agree that weapons be carried on most any occasion.
“It’s like wearing a seat belt in a car,” said Shaun Kranish on the importance of being armed at all times.
The one exception that Kranish jokingly agreed to may be when snuggling with a loved one at night.
Besides that circumstance, people must be prepared to defend themselves and others against criminals who kill without remorse or conscience, Kranish said.
“I would hate the thought of someone opening fire on innocent people (near me), and I’m not armed,” he said.
Kranish is the executive director of ICarry.org, with members in Illinois and southern Wisconsin. He and several members traveled to the Delavan gathering from Rockford, Ill.
Advocates argue that the Constitution and legal rulings from courts and top state officials allow them to carry openly, as long as guns are holstered and in plain site and not concealed by clothing or other objects.
Nik Clark, chairman of Wisconsin Carry Inc., also was at the rally
Rallies to display firepower in public have become prevalent this summer, having occurred at Starbucks in Eau Claire, La Crosse, Racine, Kenosha and at a Culver’s restaurant in Beloit, said Paul Fisher of Sugar Creek Township, an event organizer.
The Delavan Starbucks manager, personally known by some attendees, said she was instructed by her boss to not comment on Sunday’s rally.
In March, Starbucks publicly stated it allowed open-carry guns in states where it is legal.
At any given moment, about 40 open-carry advocates were chatting on the outdoor patio that overlooks busy Highway 50 or inside the air-conditioned coffee shop.
Overall attendance was likely higher, though. Advocates from the area, as well as from Milwaukee, La Crosse, Sheboygan, Racine and Rockford, readily came and went throughout the warm afternoon.
“Frankly, I’m surprised at the number of people who are here,” Fisher said. “A year ago, I’m not sure we would have had this kind of turnout.”
No Delavan police were seen observing the event, although law enforcement agencies from throughout Walworth County were invited to attend, Fisher said
A picnic for area open-carry advocates might be the next event, Fisher said.
A discussion point at the local event was when was it inappropriate to open carry?
Wisconsin law says convicted felons cannot carry and open guns cannot be carried inside a government building or near a school. People cannot carry if they are intoxicated. Without permission, they cannot carry inside a place that serves alcohol. If a merchant does not want open carry in his or her establishment, the armed person must leave as immediately as he or she is able.
Besides the incidents spelled out by Wisconsin law, many attendees were hard pressed to set personal restrictions on their own open-carry practices.
Fisher said he thought church might be one example, but he quickly retracted that thought after remembering the slaughter that happened several years back at a church based in a meeting room of a suburban Milwaukee hotel.
“Everyone would assume you’d be safe in church, but you can never really tell,” Fisher said.
Heather Palenske carries a pink handgun, the same color as the van of her husband Mike’s business—Dam Road Gun Shop in Delavan.
The gun not only provides protection but also accessorizes her outfit. Palenske said pink is her favorite color.
She also could not think of an inappropriate time in which to carry her petite handgun, including weddings and funerals.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Tuesday, August 31, 2010 @ 10:16:04 CDT (10286 reads)
ICarry.org ICarryTV Interview with Nik Clark, Chairman of Wisconsin Carry, Inc. ICarry.org Executive Director Shaun Kranish interviews Nik at an open carry get together in Delavan, Wisconsin at Starbucks.
Congratulations to all Wisconsin gun owners, Wisconsin Carry, Inc. and ICarry.org for the incredible progress that has been made in Wisconsin through the open carry movement. New people are open carrying on a daily basis in Wisconsin, and the weekly events that are springing up all over the state are bringing in new faces all the time. Take some notes, Illinois, THIS IS HOW TO DO IT!!!
Posted by ShaunKranish on Monday, August 30, 2010 @ 10:35:47 CDT (8360 reads)
The U.S. government is opposing Korea’s bid to sell thousands of aging U.S. combat rifles to American gun collectors.
By Jung Sung-ki
The U.S. government opposed South Korea’s bid to sell hundreds of thousands of aging U.S. combat rifles to American gun collectors, a senior government official said Thursday.
The ministry announced the plan last September as part of efforts to boost its defense budget, saying the export of the M1 Garand and carbine rifles would start by the end of 2009.
The U.S. administration put the brakes on the plan, citing “problems” that could be caused by the importation of the rifles.
The problems the U.S. government cited were somewhat ambiguous, said an official at the Ministry of National Defense on condition of anonymity.
“The U.S. insisted that imports of the aging rifles could cause problems such as firearm accidents. It was also worried the weapons could be smuggled to terrorists, gangs or other people with bad intentions,” the official told The Korea Times.
“We’re still looking into the reason why the U.S. administration is objecting to the sale of the rifles and seeking ways to resolve the problems raised,” he said.
Critics say the ministry pushed to sell the firearms in a hasty manner without enough consultation with the U.S. beforehand, as calls were growing to increase defense expenditure.
The Seoul government sought to sell the outdated U.S guns back to the United States.
A total of 86,000 M1 rifles and another 22,000 carbines were to be sold, as the weapons have been mothballed for about five decades in military warehouses. The per-unit price of the M1 rifle is about $220 and the carbine is more than $140, according to the ministry.
M1s were made first in 1926 and used in World War II and the 1954-1975 Vietnam War. The carbines were first produced in 1941 and used during the 1950-1953 Korean War.
Posted by ShaunKranish on Tuesday, August 24, 2010 @ 21:18:46 CDT (10630 reads)
The Federal Government has no constitutional authority to regulate firearms. How then have all these federal laws been passed and enforced? What about all the new laws that are always hanging over the heads of tens of millions of peaceful gun owners?