Supreme Court Extends Second Amendment to the States

In a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court has effectively struck down Chicago’s gun law and extended its earlier ruling on the Second Amendment to all states as a fundamental right. It is the decision that some of us anticipated as consistent with past rulings on fundamental rights. The impact will be considerable as all states will now have to respect the individual right of gun ownership under the Second Amendment.

Justice Sam Alito wrote the majority opinion. I discussed the case in a column in Roll Call that addressed a little discussed aspect of the controversy involving The Slaughter House Cases. Some of us wanted the conservatives to overturn or at least expand the narrow ruling of The Slaughter House cases. As noted in this column, I viewed it as the intellectually honest thing to do — rather than selectively incorporate gun rights. The Court should have adopted a broader notion of the Privileges or Immunities Clause. We were disappointed again:

We see no need to reconsider that interpretation here. For many decades, the question of the rights protected by the Fourteenth Amendment against state infringement has been analyzed under the Due Process Clause of that Amendment and not under the Privileges or Immunities Clause. We therefore decline to disturb the Slaughter House holding.

The opinion is somewhat fractured. Alito is joined by three Justices in finding the Second Amendment right of gun ownership is incorporated through the Due Process Clause. Justice Clarence Thomas agrees the Amendment is incorporated, but not under Due Process. This may be a slight disappointment. When Warren forged rulings like Brown and Miranda, he struggled to guarantee a solid if not unanimous voice of the Court. This is a landmark conservative ruling, but lacks that solidity in rationale.

The opinion itself directly deals with the prohibition on firearms in the home. That leaves room for future cases to explore other restrictions such as possession of guns on the street or particularly locales. There are no true absolute rights in the Bill of Rights. Even speech and religion can be limited under some circumstances. The same will be true for gun rights.

Alito points out (correctly) that the majority was not subtle in the earlier Heller decision in how the right to bear arms was viewed as fundamental, even if it did not directly rule on that question:

Our decision in Heller points unmistakably to the an-
swer. Self-defense is a basic right, recognized by many
legal systems from ancient times to the present day,15 and
in Heller, we held that individual self-defense is “the
central component” of the Second Amendment right. 554
U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 26); see also id., at ___ (slip op., at 56) (stating that the “inherent right of self-defense has been central to the Second Amendment right”). Explaining that “the need for defense of self, family, and property is most acute” in the home, ibid., we found that this right applies to handguns because they are “the most preferred firearm in the nation to ‘keep’ and use for protection of one’s home and family,” id., at ___ (slip op., at 57) (some internal quotation marks omitted); see also id., at ___ (slip op., at 56) (noting that handguns are “overwhelmingly chosen by American society for [the] lawful purpose” of self-defense); id., at ___ (slip op., at 57) (“[T]he American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon”). Thus, we concluded, citizens must be permitted “to use [handguns] for the core lawful purpose of self-defense.” Id., at ___ (slip op., at 58).

Notably, the Court does not expressly strike down the Chicago law and instead leaves that to the later decisions from the lower courts. Indeed, Alito gives little guidance to lower courts which are left to grapple with the decision.

Here is the opinion: 08-1521

One fascinating aspect of this case is the victory of so-called Brandeis briefs — briefs from amicus with data and statistics designed to push the Court to a particular result. The first two footnotes in the opinion rely on statistics from amicus briefs as opposed to the trial or appellate record. While these briefs have argument and not just statistics, the Court continues to rely on such briefs. I have been a longtime critic of Brandeis briefs.

It will be interesting (and likely) to see the decision raised today in the Kagan hearings. Kagan previously stated that she is not sympathetic with gun rights claims. She may be asked if she would view this matter closed under principles of stare decisis now that a decision has been rendered. Notably, since Justice Stevens wrote one of the dissents, Kagan would not have changed the result.

This is a developing blog entry.

89 thoughts on “Supreme Court Extends Second Amendment to the States

  1. I think we can look forward to a time when everyone will have a sixgun strapped to his hip, and just walking down the street might cause a shootout at the OK corral.

  2. From a results perspective this is an acceptable decision. That said, I previously wrote that selection incorporation of these rights should be ended. That has not happened here and is disappointing.

  3. And now I assume the States Rights crowd will complain loudly about Federal interference in local matters . . . right?

  4. We only kill 30,000 per year by guns and wound over 70,000 per year. This ruling should surely add to this total. Since the end of WW II over 1 million (1,000,000) men, women and children have been killed internally by guns. We are the laughing stock of the world. We have killed more people internally than all the wars combined! Enough is Enough! Thank George W. Bush for stacking the Supreme Court so that this carnage can continue!

  5. Does this mean that as I travel from state to state I no longer have to run and hide from hordes of rampaging teabaggers and gangs of “cops gone wild” but instead I may just shoot them?

  6. Good. The Justices that voted for the majority understand the constitution. The proper place for the four in the minority is at the end of a hangman’s noose. Call me intolerant, I don’t care, in fact, you would happen to be correct. Anybody that denies individual rights under the Second Amendment needs to make their home in Britain and France, so they can join in the laughter. Just remember, in the event your home is invaded by armed thugs-when seconds count, the cops are mere minutes away.

  7. This is all part of our plan for world domination! You see, it used to be that doctors would return home from war zone hospitals and use their battle-hardened techniques to save the lives of people who had been shot in our domestic ERs. Today, our ER docs develop new techniques for treating massive gunshot traumas here in our domestic ERs and then implement those techniques to treat people shot up in wars around the world! It’s just a military R%D project!

    But seriously… I wonder how much of a difference this will make here in Chicago? As a peer out from my office window, down upon the gray, gritty streets of the city(*), I know that many cars, purses and armpits are concealing handguns right now. Lots of people currently flaunt the ban on both ownership and concealed carry of handguns in the City. Lots of people shoot each other every day here. Has the ban had much effect?

    My guess is that if the ban were fully removed, the effect wouldn’t be so much on street/gang violence – they already all have guns anyway. Rather it would be an increase in successful suicides and deadly domestic violence incidents as households that wouldn’t previously have violated the ban start getting their own guns.

    (* Acutally, it’s a beautiful day in Chicago. Puffy little white clouds dot a blue sky, the sun is shining brightly and pleasant breezes blow off the lake. My office window looks down on the Oak Street shopping area, populated by bronzed, surgically enhanced folk.)

    Separately, when is the official ceremony? As Chief Justice, I assume that Roberts will have the honor of actually doing it. I’m talking about the moment when the opening clause of the 2nd amendment is officially crossed out with a Sharpie marker. They’ll open the heavy glass case that protects the Bill of Rights, the cap of the pen will be popped off, and “skreeeeech” – that silly, inconvenient clause, with it’s clear intention of applying to state militias not individuals, will be blacked out for good.

  8. “that silly, inconvenient clause, with it’s clear intention of applying to state militias not individuals, will be blacked out for good.”

    Good, it should be.

  9. PatrickKelley

    “Good. The Justices that voted for the majority understand the constitution. … Just remember, in the event your home is invaded by armed thugs-when seconds count, the cops are mere minutes away.”

    ===================================================================

    Or if your home is invaded by armed cops ……..

  10. A gun in your house is more likely to kill someone who lives there than invading “armed thugs”.

  11. AY et al.

    This is a fine ruling and I commend the 5 justices. I refer you to Professor Turley column, “Do Laws Matter”. They do indeed. Therefore, anyone who comments a deadly offense with a firearm must receive the ultimate sentence—the death penalty or life without parole—depending on a State’s law.

  12. @Maverratick-

    “A gun in your house is more likely to kill someone who lives there than invading “armed thugs””.

    Please spare me your “concern” for all the little “wingnuts”. Anytime that happens your first thought is probably something along the lines of “good, that’s one less gun nut we have to worry about” and/or “good, maybe this will win more fence sitters over solidly to our side”.

    Shit happens, and the main point is, a gun in my house is more likely to make me able to blow an armed thugs shit away when the need arises. I’ll take care of me and mine, that’s my responsibility, not yours, you just take care of yourself and leave me and mine out of your “concern”.

  13. I think this was expected, but I expect it’ll not change the tyrants insistent on disarming the populace. Also, the brave folks who wrote it wrote that the people should have “all the terrible implements of war” to resist government tyranny.

    You and only you are responsible for the protection of you and yours. If you don’t want the best protection possible for your family, fine. But leave me the hell alone as I protect me and mine.

  14. “The NRA got what they paid for.”

    The ability to hunt deer with AK-47’s.

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m a staunch believer in the 2nd Amendment as a bulwark against tyranny, but you can kill bad men with a pistol (indeed, killing men is the primary design function of pistols and yes I know some people hunt varmints with them – doesn’t change their design parameters), a shotgun or a rifle just as dead as you can with a fully automatic assault rifle (designed for one thing – wholesale massacre of humans with minimal precision).

  15. “Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged.

    “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.

  16. Buddha Is Laughing-
    “Don’t get me wrong. I’m a staunch believer in the 2nd Amendment as a bulwark against tyranny, but you can kill bad men with a pistol (indeed, killing men is the primary design function of pistols and yes I know some people hunt varmints with them – doesn’t change their design parameters), a shotgun or a rifle just as dead as you can with a fully automatic assault rifle (designed for one thing – wholesale massacre of humans with minimal precision).”

    “Minimal precision”? What does that even mean? The current battle rifle of the US military, the M-4 derivative of the M-16, is known for being incredibly accurate. The primary purpose of fully automatic fire is to keep people’s heads down, not to kill enormous crowds of people (and that’s not even relevant given that the M-4 isn’t fully automatic, it fires in semi-automatic and three shot burst modes).

    Aside from all of that, there are legitimate uses for civilian ownership of military derived guns. The AR-15 is one of, if not the, most popular center fire rifles in the U.S., used for target shooting, sanctioned competitions, and yes, hunting. The platform allows for many calibers all the way up to those sufficient for fairly large game. Add in the accuracy, light weight, and the plethora of accessories available… It’s also becoming a good choice for home defense. Not because you can shoot a burglar 30 times, but because the typical .223/5.56 round doesn’t over penetrate as badly as shotgun or even pistol rounds. That’s a serious concern if you have children or live in close proximity to other people. It also has very low recoil, making it easy for people of all statures to operate.

    The panic expressed here is funny. Gun laws nationally have become far more relaxed in the last twenty years, and during that time, violent crime went down. We’ve gone from about half the country allowing normal people to carry concealed weapons to all but eight states allowing it. We had record gun sales in the first half of 2009 but despite that and a horrible economy, crime was substantially down. I don’t think crime drops because of looser gun laws, but the notion that more guns = blood in the streets is nonsense.

  17. I am reminded of the old “All In The Family” episode where Archie gives his public service announcement on how to end hijackings…
    “I could end all hijackings tomorrow – just arm EVERYONE on board. You can pass out all the guns at the beginning of each flight..”

  18. “Aside from all of that, there are legitimate uses for civilian ownership of military derived guns.”

    Apologist gun nut nonsense that keeps criminals in heavy artillery that’s easily modified from the civilian versions. Minimal precision means exactly that, not accuracy, but the ability to flood a target with bullets no matter how much of a shitty shot you are despite your protestations to the contrary. Just get in the neighborhood. As to penetration, ever hear of custom loads? That not ringing a bell? You can make any gun safer in a home environment by altering the size (or indeed type) of projectile and/or the grain load.

    And “keeping heads down”? Laughable horseshit unless you mean “blowing heads off”.

    Unless, of course, the deer you’re hunting are armed with .50 cal. Ooooo. Scary.

    And don’t confuse disdain for panic.

    Guns have limited utility. Other than for hunting and self-defense – for which pistols, traditional rifles and shotguns are perfectly adequate? Guns are for little boys trying to compensate for something and/or criminals.

    Personally, I believe Robert Heinlein was correct. He wrote a short story about how everyone was mandated to be armed. Short term consequence? Murder rate went through the roof. Long term consequences? Manners got a helluva lot better. But it didn’t require overkill weapons. Just simple sidearms.

    Be a better shot and needing to spray high volumes of lead ceases to be an issue.

  19. Speaking of “ceasing to be an issue”, I don’t hear a lot from the gun zealots being upset about the suspension of habeas corpus, another fundamental Constitutional right.

    Regulating militia (read: civilians) gun ownership is perfectly Constitutional. The only reason it isn’t in this case is the 14th Amendment and the reservation of powers. A Federal law (which you’ll never see due to the NRA’s lobby and their “exemption”) could legally restrict the ownership of weapons that can be converted to military specs without any Constitutional conflict.

    This ruling has limited scope and it’s scope isn’t the ability for the Federal government to regulate firearms (to a point), but rather that it’s improper for states to do so in any way.

  20. Patrick Kelley:

    “The proper place for the four in the minority is at the end of a hangman’s noose. Call me intolerant, I don’t care, in fact, you would happen to be correct. Anybody that denies individual rights under the Second Amendment needs to make their home in Britain and France, so they can join in the laughter.”

    ******************

    While I might agree with today’s ruling on legal grounds, idiots like you make me want to oppose it. I might also observe that the reason for the laughter coming from abroad likely springs from the realization that violent wackos like you may have gotten more than you you asked for in today’s Wild West ruling. Here’s some stats:

    Firearm homicide rate
    per 100,000 pop.

    England & Wales 0.12
    France 0.21
    United States 2.97

    Not real hard to figure who gets the last laugh there, is it Wyatt Earp?

  21. “While I might agree with today’s ruling on legal grounds, idiots like you make me want to oppose it. I might also observe that the reason for the laughter coming from abroad likely springs from the realization that violent wackos like you may have gotten more than you you asked for in today’s Wild West ruling. Here’s some stats:

    “Firearm homicide rate
    per 100,000 pop.

    “England & Wales 0.12
    France 0.21
    United States 2.97

    “Not real hard to figure who gets the last laugh there, is it Wyatt Earp?”

    Nor do I give a rats ass. If you don’t like it, get your ass to England Wales or France. I’ll gladly live with our murder rate and take my chances. I have no tolerance for traitorous leftist judges to whom the constitution means what’s convenient to their beliefs at any given time. A well-regulated militia means an armed citizenry, not a professional standing army or professional police, or anything remotely like that. They know that, and need to see the end of a hangman’s noose for saying otherwise.

  22. “I have no tolerance for traitorous leftist judges to whom the constitution means what’s convenient to their beliefs at any given time.”

    You know, that’s kinda funny, because I have no tolerance for rightwing wannabe bad boys who don’t understand what the Constitution means period except to use the word “gun” as a justification for their being a backwards purposefully ignorant violent redneck thug.

    Or would you like to threaten some more judges?

  23. You know, that’s kinda funny, because I have no tolerance for rightwing wannabe bad boys who don’t understand what the Constitution means period except to use the word “gun” as a justification for their being a backwards purposefully ignorant violent redneck thug.

    Or would you like to threaten some more judges?

    I don’t care what you tolerate. Let me put it to you as clearly and concisely as possible. I don’t give a shit about tolerance. I know what I love, what I like, what I despise, and what I hate. I don’t pretend to be tolerant, and I don’t have any problem whatsoever expressing that, nor do I give a big fucking rats ass how you interpret my words or how you feel about them, or me. I mean exactly what I say. Got it, freak?

  24. Seriously. I can make fun of you all night (or until I get bored, whichever comes first).

    Actually, you do a fine job of mocking yourself.

    I’m just surprised someone with a family tree that looks like a stump can even find the power switch on a computer much less type.

    Got it, goober?

  25. Come on. Bark some more. Illustrate to the world what substandard education and steady diet of beer and violence makes a “man” become.

  26. Nor do I give a rats ass. If you don’t like it, get your ass to England Wales or France.

    **************

    Well obviously you do there little man or you wouldn’t have responded.

    I have always agreed with the Freudians that the man obsessed with the size of his rifle — like PK here– must have some Howitzer-like feelings of inadequacy about the size of his personal “gun.”

  27. There’s also the possibility of anxiety resulting from repressed homosexual panic, mespo. But selling him short is probably part of that pathology as well.

  28. You know Buddha, if we heavily armed all the residents of the gulf, do you think BP could come up with a oil capping plan before August? On a pleasant mental exercise, I ‘d like to arm all the folks PK dislikes or who dislike him (and there’s lots of ’em I would guess) with a bullshit seeking missile and see how long this biggest badass in the neighborhood would last.

  29. BIL:

    Poke

    Poke

    Poke

    Come on! Dance, monkey, dance!
    **************

    There you went and spoiled it. Now Lancelot Link here knows we’re playing with him and we’ll never get to find out why his family tree doesn’t branch out. Thanks!!

  30. rofl

    Yeah, but we’d have to worry about bullshit seeking missiles diverting to Congress.

    As to BP? That’s actually been a hot topic of discussion around here. How long until some swamp rat decides that since his life and livelihood have been ruined, he’s going to go shoot a few BP executives. I know last week I had that conversation at least five times and only started it once. I hear varied estimates on the time frame, but pretty much everyone agrees it will happen at some point unless BP seriously gets their act together.

  31. PatrickKelley,

    Outrageous people like you harm the Second Amendment. You stand as one of the catalysts that make the anti-gun folks more resolute in their opposition to gun ownership. If most gun owners were as cockeyed as you are, I could understand their anti-gun reasoning; fortunately, you are definitely on the fringe.

    I am virtually an absolutist regarding Second Amendment rights; however, I want people to know that most of us lifelong gun owners disdain people of your ilk.

  32. I don’t give a rats ass about the murder rate in England, Wales, and France compared to the higher rate here, that’s right, and I’ll repeat, if you don’t like it here, you know where to go.

    I have no worries about anything. My side won this battle. Remember? You’re the one that’s all tore up because mean old nasty redneck wing nuts like me won this round, you know we’re happy about it, and its eating freaks like you and the phony little shit grinning Buddha up inside. I’m the one laughing at you, just in case you’re not quick enough to catch on.

    I just happened on here because I heard about the decision and am interested in researching the ins and outs of both sides of the equation. My main concern is in the next election and the one in 2012, making sure to what extent I can that this country elects people that I don’t have to worry about appointing and confirming leftist black robe freaks like Kagan, Souter, and the other knee-jerk leftist usual suspects. Not just because of this issue, though its important, but on a variety of issues.

    As far as me being violent, I don’t appreciate leftist turd wagons like you and other pacifist freaks that want to control the whole country through oppressive government laws and regulations and then have the temerity to pretend you’re doing it in the name of democracy and freedom. People like you turn those words into an obscenity.

    So no, while I wouldn’t act in a violent way against you due to just your beliefs or politics, if for some reason I happened across the information that somebody else blew your shit away-their secret’s safe with me.

  33. Perhaps you missed this part –

    “I’m a staunch believer in the 2nd Amendment as a bulwark against tyranny, but you can kill bad men with a pistol (indeed, killing men is the primary design function of pistols and yes I know some people hunt varmints with them – doesn’t change their design parameters), a shotgun or a rifle just as dead as you can with a fully automatic assault rifle (designed for one thing – wholesale massacre of humans with minimal precision).”

    Or this part –

    “While I might agree with today’s ruling on legal grounds, idiots like you make me want to oppose it.”

    Meaning, since you don’t read very well, that both mespo and I AGREE with the ruling, numbnuts.

    So “my side” won too, genius.

    But if you want to keep humping your sister, your secret is safe with me.

    And everyone else on the Internet, you violence prone redneck.

    BTW, if you see a bunch of black Suburbans, go ahead and shoot and see how that works out for you. Because you are clearly a dangerous whack job of the type the FBI like to visit. Or maybe the U.S. Marshall Service.

    In the future, don’t mistake someone being a pacifist for someone not willing or able to kick your ass if you offer them no other choice.

  34. Former Federal LEO-

    If I want your advice, I’ll ask for it. You handle these fruits your way, I’ll handle them my way. I don’t have any intention of playing nice with a group of freaks who accuse me of threatening judges because I think they should be hanged by the neck until dead, after they’ve been tried and convicted of treason. If you want to try to reason with people that try to twist your words around, have at it. I’m not interested in reasoning with them.

  35. “BTW, if you see a bunch of black Suburbans, go ahead and shoot and see how that works out for you. Because you are clearly a dangerous whack job of the type the FBI like to visit. Or maybe the U.S. Marshall Service.”

    Let them come motherfucker. Black suburbans, black hawks, Humvees, send them on, I don’t give a fuck, because I got nothing to worry about. If somebody wants to ask me any questions I’ll answer anything they ask me, including the fact that I think most leftists should be tried and hung for treason. Just because you say you agree with the decision up to a point doesn’t mean you’re not a leftist freak anymore than the fact that I am against any federal or other restrictions on guns means I screw my sister or that I’ve got a small penis or any of the other bullshit you’ve shot my way tonight. Shit, even some communists believe in an armed citizenry, I know them and have discussed the subject with them, so that doesn’t prove jack shit.

    Yeah, I read your bullshit, you’re fine with people owning pistols rifles and shotguns in their homes, or so you say, but you draw the line at automatic and semi-automatic rifles, because I guess the average person just can’t be trusted to handle them. So your second amendment credentials get relegated to the realm of the half-ass at best from my perspective.

    So go ahead and rant about how I’m a violent psycho and how the big bad government will be paying me a visit. Maybe in your next post you might want to accuse me of fucking my mother, my daughter, or maybe even my dog with my real little pecker. You know what, freak, I don’t care. Because I know what I’m about, and I know what you’re about, and I don’t have any problem whatsoever with me. Just go ahead and kick my ass through the internet because I haven’t given you any choice while I sit here and tremble in fear, faggot.

  36. You are doing a fine job of illustrating exactly how crazy you are without any help from me.

    “You see, madness, as you know, is like gravity. All it takes is a little push!”

    Okay. Maybe I helped a little.

  37. Ol’ so PK doesn’t like leftists, judges, homosexuals, the government, black SUV’s, tolerant people, ignorant violent redneck thugs (self-loathing?), the military, communists, Kagan, Souter, pacifists, and, I suspect, a partridge in a pear tree. If you can judge a man by those he admires, what must you make of PK and the fact he admires no one at all?

  38. Make of me what you will. I never said I didn’t like communists, hell some of my best friends are communists, at least they’re not hypocrites like most Democrats. Homosexuals, no problem there either, as long as they’re conservative or independent minded. I don’t even mind black SUVs or those sinister government agents that drive them.

    I actually admire some judges, specifically the judges that voted the right way on this issue, if that helps you out. Its the traitorous leftist fucks in black robes, and the leftist politicians that appoint them, who purposely misrepresent the constitution including but not limited to the second amendment, whom I would like to see tried for treason and hanged by the neck until dead. I never said I intended to snatch them up and hang them myself outside the law like one of your fucks tried to imply I did, but hey, I’ll tell you what, if they are ever tried and sentenced to death by firing squad, I will happily and gleefully pull the trigger, then I’ll go back to fucking my family members while you cheese and whine eaters fly to London, Munich, or gay Paree to be with your own kind.

  39. “Apologist gun nut nonsense that keeps criminals in heavy artillery that’s easily modified from the civilian versions.”

    Flat wrong. So called assault weapons are used in a very very tiny percentage of gun crime for the same reason all long guns make up a small percentage – they are harder to conceal and acquire.

    “Minimal precision means exactly that, not accuracy, but the ability to flood a target with bullets no matter how much of a shitty shot you are despite your protestations to the contrary.”

    If I’ve got a choice between being shot at by someone who is aiming and someone who is spraying, I’ll take the latter. You might remember the North Hollywood shootout, the most well known machine gun incident in modern memory. The bad guys fired 1300 rounds, and while they did injure some, not one innocent person was killed. You might also want to inform the many military and police organizations that use the M-16/M-4 that it is only “minimally precise”. It’s a gun made to be accurate, not to indiscriminately hurl lead downrange.

    “Just get in the neighborhood. As to penetration, ever hear of custom loads? That not ringing a bell? You can make any gun safer in a home environment by altering the size (or indeed type) of projectile and/or the grain load.”

    What the Christ are you babbling about? Most people don’t have the ability to make custom loads. We buy ammunition at sporting goods stores and do so based on effectiveness and other factors. It is a fact that the standard round used in the AR platform will go through fewer walls than a typical home defense shotgun load or pistol round. Any round that is sufficient for self defense by definition will completely penetrate a human body (at least going by FBI criteria). If you are talking about using stuff like birdshot or Glazer safety rounds, then we can go ahead and drop this part of the argument, because it’s further evidence that you have no idea what you are talking about.

    “And “keeping heads down”? Laughable horseshit unless you mean “blowing heads off”.”

    You are making an ass out of yourself. Look up the term “suppressive fire”.

    “Guns have limited utility. Other than for hunting and self-defense – for which pistols, traditional rifles and shotguns are perfectly adequate? Guns are for little boys trying to compensate for something and/or criminals.”

    Out come the tired put downs. Come on, seriously? The gun/penis bit?

    “Speaking of “ceasing to be an issue”, I don’t hear a lot from the gun zealots being upset about the suspension of habeas corpus, another fundamental Constitutional right.”

    I’ve been screaming about it since Bush began his rape of the Bill of Rights. I’ve continued to scream about it under Obama. Perhaps I’m not enough of a zealot though; I voted for Obama and regret it because he isn’t “liberal” enough.

    PatrickKelly-
    If you aren’t a troll (and I think there’s a good chance you are), and you care at all about this issue, please shut up. People like you define the term “gun nut”. Most people who own guns are not nuts, but we get grouped with people like you because your type gets the attention.

    Most gun owners do not revel in or crave violence like you seem to. The thought of using my gun on anything but paper targets is nauseating.

  40. It’s interesting to note that when posters like PK join the discussion on any subject (abortion, guns, creationism etc.), they all say exactly the same thing … exactly.

    They always call the regular posters cheese and whine eaters, freaks (most favorite), and leftist turd wagons … exact words used by every one of them.

    They sprinkle their prose with a lot of fucks, fuckers, faggots … three of their most favorite words though faggot is their most favorite.

    And they always want to kill somebody whose voiced opinion is different from theirs … “if they are ever tried and sentenced to death by firing squad, I will happily and gleefully pull the trigger” … “need to see the end of a hangman’s noose for saying otherwise.”

    Finally, they all, every one of them, claim to be laughing … ” I’m the one laughing at you, just in case you’re not quick enough to catch on.”

    Is there a script they follow or is it always just the same person using different names? Interesting …

  41. Jason,

    You and I are not as far apart as you think.

    I meant what I said about the difference between accuracy and precision. If you disagree on terminology, that’s your right. No matter how accurate, fully automatic weapons compensate for poor marksmanship by quantity of bullets fired. Simple fact – they make killing indiscriminately require less skill. A good marksman with a .32 can take out a spaz with .357, but a spaz with an Uzi? That’s a different story.

    “Most people don’t have the ability to make custom loads.” That’s a logical error called the fallacy of division. What is true for the part is not true for the whole. Those who cannot make custom loads can go to a good gun shop and get loads made to spec. I’ve done it myself. As to safety rounds, you apparently define self-defense as killing. Coming from a martial arts background, my goal is always to end a confrontation with the minimal damage possible. So yeah, that ends that part of the conversation. However, I was thinking of “less than lethal” shotgun loads, not Glazers or birdshot. Hell, hollowpoints are far better than Glazer rounds in re stopping power and because of their nature have far less penetration than full metal jacket ammo. However, there is no such thing as a non-lethal load – even blanks can kill as evidenced by the on-set death of 80’s actor John Eric Hexum when he shot himself in the head with a pistol loaded with blanks after yelling something along the lines of “Hey! Look at me!” (because he was a moron). Even beanbags can kill, but they will certainly stop someone with a lesser chance of death. Same goes for rubber bullets although they have a greater chance of being lethal than a beanbag. But hollowpoints and light grain load in a pistol are no more dangerous a load than your AR-15.

    As to me making an ass out of myself? I really don’t care what you think of my methods. I also know perfectly well what suppressive fire is too, sport. I know you don’t have to have a fully automatic weapon to do it either. Thinking you do would be you making an ass out of yourself, so that makes us even in the ass department. Feel free not to care.

    As to the issue of militarized weapons and crime, the constant militarization of our police forces since the time of Darryl Gates in LA has been sold and justified as “our guys are just outgunned”. You provided a good example yourself. The aftermath of North Hollywood was again a call for more access for patrol officers (not just SWAT) to fully automatic weapons. That episode created the trend of using your apparent gun of choice, the AR-15, to arm police in this country. So instead of limiting access, flood the market. Oh yeah, that makes sense. Like no criminal has ever stolen or modified a gun. What will happen now? Criminals will seek better armaments, ammo and armor. It’s the nature of escalation.

    As to your assertion that “So called assault weapons are used in a very very tiny percentage of gun crime for the same reason all long guns make up a small percentage – they are harder to conceal and acquire” is unfounded and mere supposition and opinion as even the FBI doesn’t breakdown their crime statistics by assault rifle, but merely by handguns, rifles, shotguns, and firearms type unknown (in addition to other knives/cutting weapons and manual attacks). If you’d like to look for yourself, http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2008/index.html. Of these categories, there is no data collected on the firing mechanisms and all the types listed can be fully automatic including machine pistols and rifles (although I will stipulate fully automatic shotguns are rare in the extreme, the only one I know of is the AA-12). That handguns make up the bulk of the crime stats does reflect ease in acquisition and concealment, but I never said I had a problem with handguns despite their design function is primarily killing people. Personally, I prefer shotguns. My issue is any weapon capable of being modified to full auto, from machine pistols to assault rifles. Guns make killing easy enough, but overkill is overkill.

    As one familiar with hunting if not a hunter yourself, you are familiar with baiting. PK there represents the dangerous fringe that the gun culture harbors. Although I threw the bait at you, he hit it. Even you acknowledge that he’s the lunatic fringe (or a troll, either of which is fair game). Tired or not, the put down (more accurately a confrontational stance) drew a loon out into the open. While you may be a responsible gun owner, I wouldn’t trust people like that guy with a slingshot. I don’t worry about a responsible target shooter. My concern is the mentally unstable. I’m not saying you shouldn’t be able to target shoot with reasonable or even very powerful guns, only that certain types of weapons are not appropriate for anyone not on a battlefield because of their ROF potential. I’m also against most (not all) extended magazines for the same reason – overkill. The danger they represent to the general public in the wrong hands (like PK) simply outweighs their utility as self-defense/entertainment when other alternatives exist. Which they do.

    But foremost and above all I believe in this principle: the best way not to get in trouble is not to be there when it starts.

    As to your stance on habeas corpus, good show. We need more people screaming about that.

  42. I was a pretty strong gun control guy for most of my life, until about a year ago, when a very smart pro-gun friend began sending me all sorts of studies, showing that widespread gun ownership did not lead to an increase in gun violence. Lots of people carrying guns may have kept the Wild West from being a lot more wild. And it does make sense, given that it takes the cops a while to respond to a 911 call, for homeowners to have access to guns for self-defense. What the Founders meant by the 2nd Amendment is open to discussion and interpretation; they clearly included the phrase about the well-regulated militia for a reason. This would not have been necessary if they were simply talking about individual gun ownership. And this was written at a time when an expert shooter could get off perhaps a couple of shots in a minute; who knows how they would have written the Amendment if they’d foreseen an Israeli-made gun that can shoot about 10 rounds a second.
    We do have the notes of the Constitutional convention, where the issue was discussed, and it’s clear that the Founders were divided on the issue. There are well-meaning people on both sides. Clearly there will have to be some limitation on weaponry that a citizen can own. No one wants their neighbor to have a nuclear device they’re testing in their patio. If we’re going to be successful at keeping these weapons out of the hands of Al Qaeda, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to let them be bought by just any ol’ clown. Isn’t it bad enough that the Pakistanis have them, and the North Koreans and Iranians aren’t far behind?
    The individual attacks between correspondents on this site is pretty discouraging. Whether the Welsh and French laugh at us or not, we have to work together to protect ourselves, both as individuals, and as a nation.
    bigkoala@verizon.net

  43. Jason,

    considering the amount of guns in the world, and considering the steady decline to totalitarianism in so many places (including US) where guns thrive too, it is my contention that the 2nd amendment isn’t helping jack sh!t as a bulwark against tyranny.

    You must be kidding.. right?

    Try a people capable of critical thinking…, which, ofcourse, we don’t have…

  44. The notion that individual gun ownership is some kind of bulwark against totalitarianism is pretty insane. You can’t fight against the modern industrial state with any weapon an individual can own. The authoritarian state has so many tools at its disposal, it would take a well-organized, well-equipped and well-led army to defeat it. In addition to all sorts of modern weapons, the state also has incredible surveillance capabilities, infiltrators and informers, the best than money can buy. Even a dedicated and skilled survivalist like Eric Rudolph, and a brilliant loner like John Kosinski eventually gets caught, and their ability to raise havoc is very limited. Oklahoma City has should have shown us that the Turner Diaries is science fiction. Both Buford Furrows and von Brunn shot up some Jewish sites in hopes it would start and uprising against the ZOG, but they’re both dead, and the State lives on.
    Individuals need guns to protect themselves, their families and their homes; they are useless against the modern state.
    bigkoala@verizon.net

  45. stan: Sorry, but are not thinking clearly.

    Now, mind you, I’m not advocating anything specific here, I’m just extrapolating.

    Most people know where cops, judges, lawyers, and soldiers live. And they don’t all have tanks, missiles, and grenades.

    Think about it. And think clearly.

    ONLY unarmed innocent citizens are subject to mass government slaughter.

  46. I find it funny that the law and order types (especially those who profit handsomely from it monetarily) will often quip “if you don’t do any thing wrong or illegal you won’t have anything to worry about (like getting arrested or being spied upon and so forth).

    Oh, and never mind that just by getting up in the morning you have probably violated several laws if not committed some felony.

    But when the shoe is on the other foot and it is government that begins to worry about the people, how is it the same theory does not apply to them? What do they have to worry about if they are not doing anything wrong?

    Suddenly that theory is tossed out the window and the citizens should be disarmed.

    Government ought to have respect for the public and it is clear they do not and THAT is what has led to their abuse of the citizens. That abuse is now what is now fuels the discontent among the public and is causing the fear by officials.

    They now worry that the public will turn on them. Well, had the government behaved, it wouldn’t be worrying, would it? Or so the principle goes.

    People have a right to defend themselves. From evil doers in and out of government.

    This is the tradition of western law, western civilization, the Magna Carta, Lex Rex, Thomas Jefferson, our founders, and our framers.

    The slaughter of 100 million plus unarmed civilians last century PROVED that this tradition was and is correct.

    If you are a government official, whether local, state, or federal, and you are worried about an armed citizenry, then I suggest you lead the way in insisting government officials be held to the difficult standards they force on civilians.

    And I suggest that you lead the charge to uphold the Constitution and support only candidates who do (and by that I mean ones you can prove uphold it). It was never clear that Obama upheld the Constitution and now we see he doesn’t. Shame on you if you were a government official who voted for him.(or John McCain).

    I suggest you join up with liberty promoting organizations instead of fascist ones like the democrat or republican parties. Anything Ron Paul belongs to will do.

    If you are for the people and for protecting their freedoms and liberties, you will have nothing to fear. The people will love you. If you are for stealing their wealth and liberty. You ought to worry. Justice demands it.

    By making the people your enemy, you make yourselves the enemy.

    Snap out of it.

  47. man there’s a boatload of fear and penisizing on this blog!

    “Unless, of course, the deer you’re hunting are armed with .50 cal. Ooooo. Scary. ”

    I went pheasant hunting many moons ago…first time hunting, w/a shotgun given to me by my then fiance. I was so amazed when I heard/saw/felt that first flutterflush of wings and POW! …gottem. [I had been on the cusp of vegetarianism when I decided i had no right eating anything that I wasn’t able to kill myself you see. I love my veggies but not exclusively….] I had then to decide in an instant whether I should cry or feel victorious, later learning that it is impossible to separate those emotions…and that the choice between the 2 was the illusion. Everyone who ate the pheasant said it was delicious but I had used the wrong sized shot so there was much carefullness and picking of pellets from the teeth at the dinner table….

    The next time we went hunting was for deer….I made much noise ;) and after that was pretty unwelcome on the manly hunt scene (except for the Turkey debacle which was a whoooooooole nother story….)but we had breakfast out in some pretty nifty woodland diners in the beautiful mountains and off the road places which was way wonderful and cool in the fall and we didn’t miss the deer meat.

  48. Buddha: No matter how accurate, fully automatic weapons compensate for poor marksmanship by quantity of bullets fired.

    Michael: I’ll tell ya one thing, if I find out my life had to end up being in the mountains, it’d be all right, but it has to be in your mind.

    Nick: What? One shot?

    Michael: Two is pussy.

  49. Well Jason, it’s statements like this “The notion that individual gun ownership is some kind of bulwark against totalitarianism is pretty insane. You can’t fight against the modern industrial state with any weapon an individual can own” that reveal exactly how paranoid you are and that you don’t use the best weapon against totalitarianism: a brain.

    So it appears we are much further apart and you and PK are much closer together.

  50. W=c,

    I think I’ve hunted with you before. ;) I’m kinda with you though. Never enjoyed deer hunting (although I do enjoy venison) as I found it really pretty boring. If I wanted to go out into the woods and sit in a tree for hours, I can do that just as easily in the back yard. Bird hunting (quail especially) I don’t mind, but never duck hunting – that’s just too early for me to get up when I can go to the butcher and buy one. But if I kill it, I eat it. It’s the only ethical thing to do. No trophies in my house.

    All in all, I’d rather go fishing.

    Bob,

    You nailed it in one shot.

  51. Buddha Is Laughing-

    “That’s a logical error called the fallacy of division. What is true for the part is not true for the whole. Those who cannot make custom loads can go to a good gun shop and get loads made to spec. I’ve done it myself.”

    And that you were able to do it is proof that anyone can? That all people have access to such shops and can afford to do so?

    “As to safety rounds, you apparently define self-defense as killing.”

    Nope, never said it, never implied it.

    “Coming from a martial arts background, my goal is always to end a confrontation with the minimal damage possible.”

    Mine is to prevent the confrontation, run from the confrontation, do anything possible to stop the confrontation. If that means poking him in the eyes Three Stooges style, great. If it means shooting, then I’ll do what I have to do. I am not looking to kill, but to stop the attack — but of course I am aware that that may mean killing. If there were such a weapon as a Star Trek phaser with a stun setting, I’d much prefer that over a gun. Tazers and stun guns aren’t close to that unfortunately.

    “But hollowpoints and light grain load in a pistol are no more dangerous a load than your AR-15.”

    But again, their effectiveness will suffer.

    “I also know perfectly well what suppressive fire is too, sport. I know you don’t have to have a fully automatic weapon to do it either.”

    Never said you did. I did say that the primary purpose of automatic fire in modern warfare is for suppressive fire.

    “That episode created the trend of using your apparent gun of choice, the AR-15,”

    Not yet. Too expensive.

    “So instead of limiting access, flood the market. Oh yeah, that makes sense. Like no criminal has ever stolen or modified a gun. What will happen now? Criminals will seek better armaments, ammo and armor. It’s the nature of escalation.”

    And for all of that, after twenty years or more of wide access to such gear, crime has gone down down down. Why are you in fear of something that clearly isn’t happening (in any measurable sense)?

    “As to your assertion that “So called assault weapons are used in a very very tiny percentage of gun crime for the same reason all long guns make up a small percentage – they are harder to conceal and acquire” is unfounded and mere supposition and opinion as even the FBI doesn’t breakdown their crime statistics by assault rifle, but merely by handguns, rifles, shotguns, and firearms type unknown (in addition to other knives/cutting weapons and manual attacks).”

    It is not unfounded or mere supposition. I will however concede the point for now, not because I can’t produce the data, but because the data is older than I’d like.

    “My issue is any weapon capable of being modified to full auto, from machine pistols to assault rifles. Guns make killing easy enough, but overkill is overkill.”

    ANY semi-automatic gun can be half-assed converted to fully automatic. There’s all sorts of ways to jury-rig a gun for ammo-wasting good times. Yet after decades of these weapons being available, machine gun crime doesn’t seem to be the scourge you fear.

    “I’m not saying you shouldn’t be able to target shoot with reasonable or even very powerful guns, only that certain types of weapons are not appropriate for anyone not on a battlefield because of their ROF potential.”

    Obviously we will have to agree to disagree on this. There’s just no evidence of this being a problem, and if it was, we would have heard about it by now. The AR has exploded in popularity nationally. And crime over the long term keeps going down.

    “I’m also against most (not all) extended magazines for the same reason – overkill. The danger they represent to the general public in the wrong hands (like PK) simply outweighs their utility as self-defense/entertainment when other alternatives exist.”

    Guns with high capacity magazines have been the norm for decades. Where’s the evidence that this is a problem?

    “But foremost and above all I believe in this principle: the best way not to get in trouble is not to be there when it starts.”

    I’m with you there.

    Jericho-
    “considering the amount of guns in the world, and considering the steady decline to totalitarianism in so many places (including US) where guns thrive too, it is my contention that the 2nd amendment isn’t helping jack sh!t as a bulwark against tyranny.

    You must be kidding.. right?

    Try a people capable of critical thinking…, which, ofcourse, we don’t have…”

    Your critical thinking allowed you to go at me for something I didn’t say. Great job. Which leads us back to:

    Buddha Is Laughing-
    “Well Jason, it’s statements like this “The notion that individual gun ownership is some kind of bulwark against totalitarianism is pretty insane. You can’t fight against the modern industrial state with any weapon an individual can own” that reveal exactly how paranoid you are and that you don’t use the best weapon against totalitarianism: a brain.”

    And you just used Jericho’s delusion about what I said instead of actually reading what I said so that you’d see that I didn’t say it. Brilliant.

  52. Jason,

    There is a difference between rational and rationale.

    “And that you were able to do it is proof that anyone can? That all people have access to such shops and can afford to do so?” Proof of access certainly. As to payment? Results vary based on disposable income but that doesn’t invalidate ability to acquire, only resources required to acquire.

    Crime rates are falling, eh? Yet another assertion without proof and a simplification based on selective reading. “Take, for instance, the overall drop in homicides. Nationally, the decline was 2.7 percent, but most of that decrease came from major cities like New York (down 20 percent, to 496 homicides) and Los Angeles (down 19 percent, to 380 homicides). Among cities with populations over 1 million, murder rates dropped 9.8 percent. That is a stark contrast to medium-size cities. Those with populations of 100,000 to 249,999 saw a 1.9 percent rise in murder rates. For cities with 50,000 to 99,999 residents, the increase was even greater: 3.7 percent.

    What precisely explains why big cities are doing so much better isn’t entirely clear. Criminologists point to several factors. For instance, major cities have more sophisticated policing methods and more resources to respond to any fluctuations in crime rates. Regardless, the drop in big-city murder rates has a strong influence on the overall average. “A big piece of what is going on by region is very much driven by what’s going on in the big cities,” says Alfred Blumstein, a criminologist at Carnegie Mellon University.

    Size wasn’t the only factor. Northeastern cities represented the lion’s share of the violent crime decline, with an overall drop of 5.4 percent. In addition to New York, cities like Boston and Philadelphia saw downturns in their murder rates. Yet others did not budge. For instance, Newark, N.J., reported 105 homicides in 2006 and 2007.

    On average, violent crime in the South went up 0.7 percent, concentrated in large metropolitan areas like New Orleans (where homicides increased 29 percent, to 209) and Atlanta (where homicides went up 17 percent, to 129). In these instances, local factors played a key role. New Orleans is still trying to get a handle on the crime increase that followed Hurricane Katrina. In Atlanta, Deputy Police Chief Peter Andresen pointed to several factors leading to last year’s increase, particularly heavy gang activity and an overhaul of narcotics units. He noted that, despite the increase in homicides, other violent crime, like aggravated assault, declined 2 percent.

    This divergence is so widespread that, according to a recent survey by the Police Executive Research Forum, the number of cities reporting an increase in homicides was almost the same as the number reporting a decline.” http://politics.usnews.com/news/national/articles/2008/06/11/crime-rates-shown-to-be-falling.html. In context, the data shows little more than expected statistical deviation.

    Speaking of data, “It is not unfounded or mere supposition. I will however concede the point for now, not because I can’t produce the data, but because the data is older than I’d like.” Really? 1-2 year old statistical data of a complex nature to compile and report upon is too old for you? The FBI has 2008 data and preliminary 2009 data posted on-line. That makes your statement simply funny like ignorance is funny. It’s as if you expect psychic reporting of instant data which shows a complete lack of understanding of logistical projects and reporting. And if you can’t produce data? Your assertions are simply unfounded and supposition. What you “know” and what you can prove are not the same thing, hence my proffer of proof and your absence of proof. If you could prove your assertion with data, you would, but you can’t, so you mock concede based on a ridiculous excuse. Please. “I could but I won’t”. That’s amateur night for argument. It’s rationale for “I can’t” or “I could but I won’t because the data disagrees with my outcome determinism (also a logical error).”

    Proof is also different from opinion. “But hollowpoints and light grain load in a pistol are no more dangerous a load than your AR-15.” to which you reply, “But again, their effectiveness will suffer.” Shot with a .38 hollowpoint or shot with a 5.56mm from an AR-15? You’re not likely to get up from either injury and certainly less likely from a second injury. Again, you offer opinion, not evidence, based on your preference in weapon. This is a logical error called the selection bias (avoidance and confirmation biases specifically).

    “Guns with high capacity magazines have been the norm for decades. Where’s the evidence that this is a problem?” The Hollywood gunmen were caught with barrel magazines so again you’ve provided counter-evidence against your assertion. Learn the difference between “some” and “all” too. I stipulated “some”. Again with the selective reading and comprehension.

    As to fear, you’re the one living in fear that you don’t have adequate protection without fully automatic weapons. I’ll say it again slowly so there will be no misunderstanding: I disdain machine guns, not fear them. You’re exhibiting projection in the psychological sense.

    Speaking of which: “Well Jason, it’s statements like this “The notion that individual gun ownership is some kind of bulwark against totalitarianism is pretty insane. You can’t fight against the modern industrial state with any weapon an individual can own” that reveal exactly how paranoid you are and that you don’t use the best weapon against totalitarianism: a brain.” I stand by that statement and it came from my analysis of your statements, not Jericho’s. You are driven by fear and the resulting paranoia as evidenced by your statement. Your opinion implying that I’m delusional because you think Jericho is delusional and I’m somehow relying upon his statements (when no evidence points to that assertion) is also again merely your opinion and not proof.

    It’s all about the proof. You have lots of opinions, but offer no proof. There is a word for people who argue like that in court (and elsewhere in adversarial or dialectic processes): loser. To be clear, I’m not calling you personally a loser (you seem to have your shit together far more than someone like PK), but you have certainly lost this argument and will continue to do so absent proof of your assertions. Fewer formal logical fallacies wouldn’t hurt your arguments either.

  53. More up-to-date information:

    “Chicago’s murder rate was nearly three times higher than New York City’s last year, according to The Chicago Reporter’s analysis of preliminary 2009 crime statistics, released late last month by the FBI. The rate of violent crime in Chicago was almost double the rates for both New York City and Los Angeles, according to the Reporter’s analysis.

    On May 24, 2010, the FBI released its preliminary annual uniform crime report for 2009. The report includes preliminary crime figures for more than 270 cities with a population of 100,000 or more. The Reporter analyzed the murder and violent crime statistics for those cities. Murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault and aggravated battery are considered violent crimes.”

    http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-muckrakers/2010/06/chicago-is-three-times-as-deadly-as-nyc-and-twice-as-violent-as-la.html

  54. Buddha Is Laughing-
    “As to payment? Results vary based on disposable income but that doesn’t invalidate ability to acquire, only resources required to acquire.”

    So all you poor people who can’t get good health care or afford to send your kid to college, your “ability to acquire” is just as good as anyone else, it’s just your “resources required to acquire” that is off a bit.

    “Crime rates are falling, eh? Yet another assertion without proof and a simplification based on selective reading.”

    The sources are widely available and you know it. You know that homicides fell by nearly half during the 90s and have roughly held steady since then. Anyone who wants to check can look at the Uniform Crime Reports that you have mentioned

    And then you go on not to deny that crime has gone down, but to ask why it’s gone down in some places and up in others. This has nothing to do with anything I’ve said.

    “Speaking of data, “It is not unfounded or mere supposition. I will however concede the point for now, not because I can’t produce the data, but because the data is older than I’d like.” Really? 1-2 year old statistical data of a complex nature to compile and report upon is too old for you?”

    No jackass, because the data I was going to supply is older than that. I’m not going to argue my point about current facts with 20 year old information. I made a mistake; I thought the data I was referring to was more recent.

    “And if you can’t produce data? Your assertions are simply unfounded and supposition.”

    Which is why I CONCEDED THE GODDAMNED POINT. Good god.

    “What you “know” and what you can prove are not the same thing, hence my proffer of proof and your absence of proof.”

    No, you dance around facts when they don’t suit you. You know that by any rational accounting, crime, both violent and otherwise has gone down in the last twenty years. In the case of homicides, from 9.8 per 100,000 to 5.5 per 100,000 between 1991 and 2000, and the number has held steady since. But that doesn’t count for Buddha Is Laughing, because the rate hasn’t dropped uniformly in every conceivable location.

    “If you could prove your assertion with data, you would, but you can’t, so you mock concede based on a ridiculous excuse.”

    It wasn’t a mock and it wasn’t a ridiculous reason. I shouldn’t have made an assertion without being sure that I had recent data to back it up.

    “Again, you offer opinion, not evidence, based on your preference in weapon. This is a logical error called the selection bias (avoidance and confirmation biases specifically).”

    And again, you structure the argument to disagree with things I didn’t say. The comparison was not between a .38 and a .223. It was between lighter “Buddhaed” loads and normal loads.

    “Guns with high capacity magazines have been the norm for decades. Where’s the evidence that this is a problem?” The Hollywood gunmen were caught with barrel magazines so again you’ve provided counter-evidence against your assertion.

    I expect that when I say something is a problem in the context of a national issue, it would be interpreted as being in a measurable sense, not in the, “Can I possibly find a single instance somewhere in the U.S. of this.” Again, crime has gone down while the popularity of high capacity magazines has been just dandy. You are in fear of something that should have already happened.

    “Again with the selective reading and comprehension.”

    This is the definition of “rich”.

    “As to fear, you’re the one living in fear that you don’t have adequate protection without fully automatic weapons.”

    Never said it, never implied it, don’t believe it. You are projecting.

    “I’ll say it again slowly so there will be no misunderstanding: I disdain machine guns, not fear them. You’re exhibiting projection in the psychological sense.”

    Hilarious. Stand by, because here comes the part where BIL boards the crazy train.

    “I stand by that statement and it came from my analysis of your statements, not Jericho’s. You are driven by fear and the resulting paranoia as evidenced by your statement.”

    Which one?! I never said what Jericho claimed! The first mention of guns as bulwark against tyranny from me or anyone talking to me was by Jericho! I never said a word, and only a madman could dredge that up from what I had already posted. Holy crap.

    “Your opinion implying that I’m delusional because you think Jericho is delusional and I’m somehow relying upon his statements (when no evidence points to that assertion) is also again merely your opinion and not proof.”

    YOU QUOTED HIM. And he was the only one who said that about me. He painted the image of the fight against the government and then said, “You must be kidding.. right?” The “you” in that sentence is me. And since I didn’t make the government tyranny argument, he’s delusional. You then said, “It’s statements like this,” and then quoted Jericho, not me! And you now say there’s no evidence that you relied on Jericho. You’ve got a full blown fantasy world going.

    “It’s all about the proof. You have lots of opinions, but offer no proof. There is a word for people who argue like that in court (and elsewhere in adversarial or dialectic processes): loser. To be clear, I’m not calling you personally a loser (you seem to have your shit together far more than someone like PK), but you have certainly lost this argument and will continue to do so absent proof of your assertions. Fewer formal logical fallacies wouldn’t hurt your arguments either.”

    If I have “lost” this argument to anyone here, the quality of my arguments was never in play.

  55. PK is a good example of the principle that you cannot parody a whack job. The guy is so far out there he makes me think he’s a liberal trying to make gun nuts look…like nuts.

    Arguably, Madison agreed to include the Second Amendment to placate southerners who worried about the Federal Government ending slavery by disarming the Virginia and South Carolina militias so they could not put down slave revolts. In any event, Madison thought that the states would form the bulwark against an oppressive Federal Government, not individual gun owners.

  56. The Supreme Court’s decision in this case was no more surprising than night following day. Frankly, the Court had no choice given its prior determination that the right to keep and bear arms is (a.) personal and (b.) fundamental.

    That being said, I still believe that the Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment is simply wrong. I know what a participial phrase is. I know what a collective noun is. I know how to read the English language. And I understand the historical need for militias. My view is that the Court’s Second Amendment decisions rely upon political philosophy rather than legal reasoning. Unfortunately, my views are in the minority.

    Aside from what I believe to be faulty grammatical analysis, my concern is with the ramifications of these decisions. Since the NRA is on a mission to increase its membership, we can expect law suits challenging every village ordinance on the books. May any restrictions be lawfully imposed? May we lawfully restrict ownership to certain classes of weapons? The litigation will be endless.

    I have no particular problems with guns. I’ve hunted and fished. I’m a meat eater. But while I recognize a right to free speech in the schizophrenic standing on the corner and berating all those who pass by, I do have a problem with guns in the possession of schizophrenics or those (including, it would appear, a couple of posters on this site) who are prepared to blow away whoever disagrees with their views on life, politics, legal rights, the coming of Armageddon or the color composition of rainbows.

  57. Politico is reporting today that Democrats are actually happy about the decision because it takes gun control away from the Republicans as an issue in the next election, much as Reagan’s “winning” the Cold War eroded Republican justification for spending trillions on defense.

  58. When the cowardly P.C. crowd finally that we need to control the inner city negros who kill with impunity and NOT the guns who defend us aginst them?
    These cold, hard, indisputable facts, cannot be denied.
    From the FBI:
    Black males age 14 – 35, commit 56.6% of all violent crime in America, while they comprise less than 3.5% of the population, and contribute less than 1/10 of 1% to the gross national product.

  59. When will the cowardly P.C. crowd finally admit that we need to control the inner city negros who kill with impunity and NOT the guns who defend us aginst them?
    These cold, hard, indisputable facts, cannot be denied.
    From the FBI:
    Black males age 14 – 35, commit 56.6% of all violent crime in America, while they comprise less than 3.5% of the population, and contribute less than 1/10 of 1% to the gross national product.

  60. I should have known that marksmant, or one of his or her kinfolk, would be along at any minute. I’ll keep your point in mind the next time I feel threatened by any roving bands of inner city negroes. I’m now looking forward to the arguments in support of “preemptive” strikes against inner city negroes. After all, the best defense is a good offense and it would have the added bonus of purging the voting rolls.

  61. Jason,

    Now you’re just ranting like a child or more accurately like PK.

    You got your head handed to you on a plate because your argument was crap.

    Deal with it, candy ass.

  62. What Language Experts Say

    This analysis is seconded by two professional grammarians and usage experts. In 1991, author J. Neil Schulman submitted the text of the Second Amendment to A. C. Brocki, editorial coordinator of the Office of Instruction of the Los Angeles Unified School District and a former senior editor for Houghton Mifflin, and Roy Copperud, now deceased, the author of several well-regarded usage books and a member of the American Heritage Dictionary usage panel. Brocki and Copperud told Schulman that the right recognized in the amendment is unconditional and unrestricted as to who possesses it.

    Asked if the amendment could be interpreted to mean that only the militia had the right, Brocki replied, “No, I can’t see that.” According to Copperud, “The sentence does not restrict the right to keep and bear arms, nor does it state or imply possession of the right elsewhere or by others than the people.” As to the relation of the militia to the people, Schulman paraphrased Brocki as saying, “The sentence means that the people are the militia, and that the people have the right which is mentioned.” On this point, Copperud, who was sympathetic to gun control, nevertheless said, “The right to keep and bear arms is asserted as essential for maintaining the militia.”

    http://www.thefreemanonline.org/featured/reading-the-second-amendment/#

  63. Ugh. Would it have killed them to have articulated a standard of review for gun regs? They did no favors by (again) declining to do so.

  64. Noah Webster wrote (in support of the Constitution and the 2nd Amendment as we now know it):

    “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe.”

    The idea here is that the military is something different than the militia and the militia was something to DEFEND against the federal army (military).

    The militia is the collective fire power of the American people separate from the rule of the federal government as the founders knew the most dangerous thing on earth (outside of anarchy) is abusive government which needs to be checked, if necessary, by force BY the people.

  65. “No Free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”
    —Thomas Jefferson (Proposal Virginia Constitution, 1 T. Jefferson Papers, 334)

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