Tuesday, August 5, 2008

D.C. Refining of Gun Laws--Offensively Stupid

Only a few weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in the Heller case, which struck down D.C.'s ban on handguns and allowed having a firearm in operable condition at home, D.C. has passed "emergency" law and new police regulations intended to retain as much of the ban and storage requirement as possible. The law was crafted in consultation with the Brady Campaign, according to the Washington Post.

There are many objectionable features to the new D.C. law and regulations, but two stand out as particularly egregious. Though the Supreme Court ruled that D.C. could not ban handguns, the new rules would still ban all or most semi-automatic pistols. And in spite of the fact that the court ruled that D.C. cannot ban the use of guns for protection in the home, the District still prohibits having a gun loaded and ready unless an attack within your home is imminent or underway.

Without Congress' intervention, D.C. can violate the intent of the Heller decision indefinitely. That is because under "Home Rule," D.C.'s emergency bills are not subject to review by Congress, and D.C. can reinstitute "emergency" laws every 90 days. The city's officials are already thumbing their noses at the Supreme Court. They're doing everything that they can to not comply with the Supreme Court ruling," said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox, who characterized the new law as "a joke." "Unless the criminal calls you beforehand and lets you know he's coming over ... you're going to be left defenseless."

In a true case of irony, and a fine example of the absurdity of the District's "compliance" with the Supreme Court's decision, Dick Heller, the man who brought the lawsuit against the District, and on whose case the Court ruled, was among the first in line this week to apply for a handgun permit. But when he tried to register his semi-automatic pistol, he was rejected! Heller's gun has a seven round magazine. D.C.'s law defines any semi-automatic as a "machine gun" if it is "capable of" firing more than 12 shots without reloading. D.C. police interpret this as banning any "bottom-loading" semi-automatic handgun, regardless of its actual capacity. That's outrageous.

As things currently stand, a handful of arrogant politicians in a city that accounts for less than two-tenths of one percent of the population of the country, and less than two one-thousandths of one percent of the country's land mass, appear determined to disregard a decision of the country's highest court. Therefore, it's time for them to be taught as much about the Constitution's Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17 (which defines Congress's total authority over the District of Columbia), as they were recently taught about the Second Amendment.
In an effort to remedy the District's arrogant flouting of the Supreme Court's clear mandates, Representative Mark Souder (R-Ind.) recently introduced H. Res. 1331, a rule to govern House consideration of a modified version of H.R. 1399--the "District of Columbia Personal Protection Act." (H.R. 1399 was introduced in March of 2007 and has 247 cosponsors. For more information on H.R. 1399 and its Senate companion bill, S. 1001 by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.), please go to www.nraila.org/Issues/FactSheets/Read.aspx?id=72&issue=020)
H. Res. 1331 would force House consideration of H.R. 1399 if activated by a discharge petition, which will require 218 congressional signatures. It would provide for speedy consideration of legislation to enforce the Supreme Court's decision in District of Columbia v. Heller by repealing the provisions of the D.C. Code that were at issue in that case, and by preventing the District from enacting the very restrictions they are now trying to foist on their residents' Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

NRA-ILA is fully committed to restoring the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding residents of Washington, D.C., and will fight this critically important battle until victory is in hand. Please be sure to contact your U.S. Representative at (202) 225-3121, and urge him or her to press Congressional leadership to bring H.R. 1399 to the House floor. It's time to nullify, once and for all, the unconstitutional gun laws that Washington, D.C.'s government has imposed on D.C. residents and other Americans for more than 30 years.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Political Hypocrisy of the Highest Order

U.S. Senator Diane Feinstein is arguably the most anti gun members of the U.S. Congress. She has repeatedly introduced and supported far reaching draconian gun laws that would make it illegal for you to own a firearm for self defense. She was quoted in a CBS 60 Minutes interview as saying “if I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban, picking up every one of them, Mr. and Mrs. America, turn em all in, I would have done it.” However the illustrious U.S. Senator had a much sought after and virtually impossible to get, Kalifornia Concealed Cary Weapons Permit, that allowed her the very freedom that she strives to deny the rest of the country. The nearly impossible to obtain California carry permit allows few people, other than politicians and celebrities, to obtain California CCW permits. At one time, she was the only person in San Francisco to possess a concealed carry permit. When confronted with this seemingly enormous hypocrisy (even by politicians standards) she replied “Because less than twenty years ago I was the target of a terrorist group. It was the New World Liberation Front. They blew up power stations and put a bomb at my home when my husband was dying of cancer. And the bomb didn't detonate. ... I was very lucky. But, I thought of what might have happened. Later the same group shot out all the windows of my home." (I might add that is was her beach home) "And, I know the sense of helplessness that people feel. I know the urge to arm yourself because that's what I did. I was trained in firearms. I'd walk to the hospital when my husband was sick. I carried a concealed weapon. I made the determination that if somebody was going to try to take me out, I was going to take them with me." When confronted with this she had her gun (at least one) melted down and formed into a crucifix which she ostentatiously gave to the Pope. I’m sure Freud would have a field day with that one. Rudolph J. Rummel, Professor Emeritus of the University of Hawaii and author of numerous books on the depredations of governments, has a web site full of data covering what he calls “democide”: “The murder of any person or people by a government, including genocide, politicide, and mass murder.” Following are some facts he found relating to governments which disarmed their people as a prelude to “democide”. The Soviet Union appears the greatest mega-murderer of all, apparently killing near 61,000,000 people. Stalin himself is responsible for almost 43,000,000 of these. The communists probably have murdered something like 110,000,000, or near two-thirds of all those killed by all governments, quasi-governments, and guerrillas from 1900 to 1987. Professor Rummel estimates over 35 million people were slaughtered by the Chinese Communists. The Nazis murdered from 15,003,000 to 31,595,000 people…Among them 1,000,000 were children under eighteen years of age. And none of these monstrous figures even include civilian and military combat or war-deaths. In Turkey's genocide of the Armenians and Greeks, weapons were seized beforehand as part of the step-by-step implementation of what the Young Turks planned in the highest councils. During the WWI era, Turkey murdered 1.5 million of its Armenian citizens. What Hitler, Mao, and Stalin all have in common is civilian disarmament. They banned the people’s guns first. Then, in their arrogance and self-righteousness, they began to remove the “undesirables.” These are only the most heinous examples, however the unmistakable link is civilian disarmament. In conclusion every despot had a “reasonable” explanation for their power grab. If history has taught us anything its that it repeats itself. “Let your gun be your companion an all your walks” – Thomas Jefferson.