“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms … disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” –Cesare Beccaria, On Crimes and Punishment, quoted by Thomas Jefferson in Commonplace Book
people to retain the right to keep and bear arms
is, as a last resort, to protect themselves
against tyranny in government.
DO YOU REMEMBER JANUARY 3, 2007?
So many folks continue to deny these facts,even though they remember. I guess it is against their personal agenda.
High-Ranking Mexican Drug Cartel Member Makes Explosive Allegation: ‘Fast and Furious’ Is Not What You Think It Is
August 9, 2012
A high-ranking Mexican drug cartel operative currently in U.S. custody is making startling allegations that the failed federal gun-walking operation known as “Fast and Furious” isn’t what you think it is.
It wasn’t about tracking guns, it was about supplying them — all part of an elaborate agreement between the U.S. government and Mexico’s powerful Sinaloa Cartel to take down rival cartels.
The explosive allegations are being made by Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla, known as the Sinaloa Cartel’s “logistics coordinator.” He was extradited to the Chicago last year to face federal drug charges.
Jesus Vincente Zambada-Niebla (Source: MSNBC)
Zambada-Niebla claims that under a “divide and conquer” strategy, the U.S. helped finance and arm the Sinaloa Cartel through Operation Fast and Furious in exchange for information that allowed the DEA, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and other federal agencies to take down rival drug cartels. The Sinaloa Cartel was allegedly permitted to traffic massive amounts of drugs across the U.S. border from 2004 to 2009 — during both Fast and Furious and Bush-era gunrunning operations — as long as the intel kept coming.
This pending court case against Zambada-Niebla is being closely monitored by some members of Congress, who expect potential legal ramifications if any of his claims are substantiated. The trial was delayed but is now scheduled to begin on Oct. 9.
Zambada-Niebla is reportedly a close associate of Sinaloa Cartel kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman and the son of Ismael “Mayo” Zambada-Garcia, both of which remain fugitives, likely because of the deal made with the DEA, federal court documents allege.
A source in Congress, who spoke to TheBlaze on the condition of anonymity, said that some top congressional investigators have been keeping “one eye on the case.” Another two members of Congress, both lead Fast and Furious Congressional investigators, told TheBlaze they had never even heard of the case.
One of the Congressmen, who also spoke to TheBlaze on the condition of anonymity because criminal proceedings are still ongoing, called the allegations “disturbing.” He said Congress will likely get involved once Zambada-Niebla’s trial has concluded if any compelling information surfaces.
“Congress won’t get involved in really any criminal case until the trial is over and the smoke has cleared,” he added. “If the allegations prove to hold any truth, there will be some serious legal ramifications.”
Earlier this month, two men in Texas were sentenced to 70 and 80 months in prison after pleading guilty to attempting to export 147 assault rifles and thousands of rounds of ammunition to Mexico’s Los Zetas cartel. Compare that to the roughly 2,000 firearms reportedly “walked” in Fast and Furious, which were used in the murders of hundreds of Mexican citizens and U.S. Border Agent Brian Terry, and some U.S. officials could potentially face jail time if they knowingly armed the Sinaloa Cartel and allowed guns to cross into Mexico.
If proven in court, such an agreement between U.S. law enforcement agencies and a Mexican cartel could potentially mar both the Bush and Obama administrations. The federal government is denying all of Zambada-Niebla’s allegations and contend that no official immunity deal was agreed upon.
To be sure, Zambada-Niebla is a member of one of the most ruthless drug gangs in all of Mexico, so there is a chance that he is saying whatever it takes to reduce his sentence, which will likely be hefty. However, Congress and the media have a duty to prove without a reasonable doubt that there is no truth in his allegations. So far, that has not been achieved.
Zambada-Niebla was reportedly responsible for coordinating all of the Sinaloa Cartel’s multi-ton drug shipments from Central and South American countries, through Mexico, and into the United States. To accomplish this, he used every tool at his disposal: Boeing 747 cargo planes, narco-submarines, container ships, speed boats, fishing vessels, buses, rail cars, tractor trailers and automobiles. But Guzman and Zambada-Niebla’s overwhelming success within the Sinaloa Cartel was largely due to the arrests and dismantling of many of their competitors and their booming businesses in the U.S. from 2004 to 2009 — around the same time ATF’s gun-walking operations were in full swing. Fast and Furious reportedly began in 2009 and continued into early 2011.
According Zambada-Niebla, that was a product of the collusion between the U.S. government and the Sinaloa Cartel.
Soldiers and police officers guard packages of seized marijuana during a presentation for the media in Tijuana, Mexico. (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)
The claims seem to fall in line with statements made last month by Guillermo Terrazas Villanueva, a spokesman for the Chihuahua state government in northern Mexico who said U.S. agencies ”don’t fight drug traffickers,“ instead ”they try to manage the drug trade.”
Also, U.S. officials have previously acknowledged working with the Sinaloa Cartel through another informant, Humberto Loya-Castro. He is also allegedly a high-ranking member of the Sinaloa Cartel as well as a close confidant and lawyer of “El Chapo” Guzman.
Joaquin Guzman Loera, aka “El Chapo” (STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Loya-Castro was indicted along with Chapo and Mayo in 1995 in the Southern District of California in a massive narcotics trafficking conspiracy (Case no. 95CR0973). The case was dismissed in 2008 at the request of prosecutors after Loya became an informant for the United States government and subsequently provided information for years.
In 2005, “the CS (informant Loya-Castro) signed a cooperation agreement with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California,” states an affidavit filed in the Zambada-Niebla case by Loya-Castro’s handler, DEA agent Manuel Castanon.
“Thereafter, I began to work with the CS. Over the years, the CS’ cooperation resulted in the seizure of several significant loads of narcotics and precursor chemicals. The CS’ cooperation also resulted in other real-time intelligence that was very useful to the United States government.”
Under the alleged agreement with U.S. agencies, “the Sinaloa Cartel, through Loya-Castro, was to provide information accumulated by Mayo, Chapo, and others, against rival Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations to the United States government,” a motion for discovery states.
In return, the United States government allegedly agreed to dismiss the charges in the pending case against Loya-Castro (which they did), not to interfere with his drug trafficking activities and those of the Sinaloa Cartel and not actively prosecute him or the Sinaloa Cartel leadership.
Taken directly from the motion filed in federal court:
“This strategy, which he calls ‘Divide & Conquer,’ using one drug organization to help against others, is exactly what the Justice Department and its various agencies have implemented in Mexico. In this case, they entered into an agreement with the leadership of the Sinaloa Cartel through, among others, Humberto Loya-Castro, to receive their help in the United States government’s efforts to destroy other cartels.”
“Indeed, United States government agents aided the leaders of the Sinaloa Cartel.”
The government has denied this and says the deal did not go past Loya-Castro.
Zambada-Niebla was arrested by Mexican soldiers in late March of 2009 after he met with DEA agents at a Mexico City hotel in a meeting arranged by Loya-Castro, though the U.S. government was not involved in his arrest. He was extradited to Chicago to face federal drug charges on Feb. 18, 2010. He is now being held in a Michigan prison after requesting to be moved from Chicago.
During his initial court proceedings, Zambada-Niebla continually stated that he was granted full immunity by the DEA in exchange for his cooperation. The agency, however, argues that an “official” immunity deal was never established though they admit he may have acted as an informant.
Zambada-Niebla and his legal council also requested records about Operation Fast and Furious, which permitted weapons purchased in the United States to be illegally smuggled into Mexico, sometimes by paid U.S. informants and cartel leaders. Their request was denied. From the defense motion:
“It is estimated that approximately 3,000 people were killed in Mexico as a result of ‘Operation Fast and Furious,’ including law enforcement officers in the state of Sinaloa, Mexico, the headquarters of the Sinaloa cartel. The Department of Justice’s leadership apparently saw this as an ingenious way of combating drug cartel activities.”
“It has recently been disclosed that in addition to the above-referenced problems with ‘Operation Fast & Furious,’ the DOJ, DEA, and the FBI knew that some of the people who were receiving the weapons that were being allowed to be transported to Mexico, were in fact informants working for those organizations and included some of the leaders of the cartels.”
Zambada’s attorney has filed several motions for discovery to that effect in Illinois Federal District Court, which were summarily denied by the presiding judge who claimed the defendant failed to make the case that he was actually a DEA informant.
In April, 2012, a federal judge refused to dismiss charges against him.
From a Chicago Sun Times report: “According to the government, [Zambada-Niebla] conveyed his interest and willingness to cooperate with the U.S. government, but the DEA agents told him they ‘were not authorized to meet with him, much less have substantive discussions with him,’” the judge wrote.
In this courtroom artist’s drawing Jesus Vincente Zambada-Niebla appears before U.S. District Judge Ruben Castillo Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2010, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Verna Sadock)
In their official response to Zambada-Niebla’s motion for discovery, the federal government confirmed the existence of “classified materials” regarding the case but argued they “do not support the defendant’s claim that he was promised immunity or public authority for his actions.”
Experts have expressed doubts that Zambada-Niebla had an official agreement with the U.S. government, however, agree Loya Castro probably did. Either way, the defense still wants to obtain DEA reports that detail the agency’s relationship with the Sinaloa Cartel and put the agents on the stand, under oath to testify.
The documents that detail the relationship between the federal government and the Sinaloa Cartel have still not been released or subjected to review — citing matters of national security.
(Editor’s note: The impetus for this article came from author Reed A. Williams, whose upcoming book “The Weed That Just Won’t Die” delves deeply into the Zambada-Niebla court case. Get more details on the book here.)
In New York this week, the U.N. Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty continued trying to draft a treaty to impose worldwide controls on small arms, including civilian-owned firearms.
The NRA has made clear its opposition to any treaty that includes civilian firearms, and continues to note that a majority of the United States Senate stands with American gun owners in opposition to such a treaty. We have led the effort to mobilize opposition to the treaty in Congress, and not only a bipartisan majority of the U.S. Senate, but also 130 House members, have voiced strong opposition to the treaty. Ignoring that reality, U.N. conferees are working to regulate not only civilian small arms, but also ammunition and firearm parts.
Anti-gun treaty proponents continue to mislead the public, claiming the treaty would have no impact on American gun owners. That’s a bald-faced lie.
A new report this week by the U.S. Government Accountability Office confirms that the number of Americans exercising the right to carry firearms for personal protection is skyrocketing.
GAO investigators gathered information from state authorities nationwide about the number of permits issued, eligibility requirements for those permits, and the extent to which states recognize permits issued by other states. The researchers also conducted a more in-depth review of nine selected states. While information on eligibility requirements and reciprocity is easily available online (for example, on NRA-ILA’s “Gun Laws” page), some of the statistical information in the report is remarkable.
With hard numbers or estimates from all but three of the 49 states that have laws allowing for issuance of carry permits, the GAO reports that there were about 8 million active permits in the United States as of December 31, 2011. That’s about a million more than previous estimates by scholars.
In their latest attempt to protect whistleblowers from BATFE reprisal, on July 18 Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) sent a letter to BATFE Acting Director B. Todd Jones, asking him to clarify the comments he made in a video message sent to agency employees. In the video, entitled “Choices and Consequences,” Jones states, “Choices and consequences mean, simply, that if you make poor choices, that if you don’t abide by the rules, that if you don’t respect the chain of command, if you don’t find the appropriate way to raise your concerns to your leadership, there will be consequences.”
In their letter, the lawmakers tell Jones that his message “could be interpreted as a threat” to whistleblowers, and remind him that BATFE employees have the “right to talk to Congress and provide Congress with information free and clear of agency interference or retaliation”–a right expressly protected by federal law. The congressmen made clear to Jones that they expect a written response to the letter no later than July 25.
Obama Contributor Who Ran Fast and Furious Was Also Behind the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban
RUSH: And looky here, folks, from the Cybercast News Service: “Obama Contributor, Who Helped Enact Assault Weapons Ban, Ran ‘Fast and Furious’” Did you hear that? Let me repeat that for you. Cybercast News Service: “Obama Contributor, Who Helped Enact Assault Weapons Ban, Ran ‘Fast and Furious’ — Dennis K. Burke, who as a lawyer for the Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee in the 1990s was a key player behind the enactment of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban, and who then went on to become Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano’s chief of staff, and a contributor to Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential primary campaign, and then a member of Obama’s transition team focusing on border-enforcement issues, ended up in the Obama administration as the US attorney in Arizona responsible for overseeing Operation Fast and Furious.”But wait a minute. Obama didn’t know anything about Fast and Furious, and Eric Holder didn’t know anything about Fast and Furious. The Democrats tell us this. The media tells us, Obama says it. So Dennis Burke, who is as close to Obama as anybody can get, ran the assault weapons ban in 1994, worked for Janet Napolitano in Arizona, Obama’s primary campaign in ’08, transition team in ’08, ends up as the regime’s US attorney in Arizona responsible for overseeing Operation Fast and Furious. “From 1989 to 1994, he was a counsel for the Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, working in that capacity for several years on an assault weapons ban, which was finally enacted on Sept. 13, 1994 as the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act. That act expired on Sept. 13, 2004.” And they have been trying to get it back ever since.
A lot of people, and I’ll throw my hat in this ring, think that’s what Fast and Furious was all about. And Jay Carney, the White House spokeskid, says it’s absurd to think Fast and Furious is about gun control. But Obama’s lead US attorney in Arizona oversaw the program. Every day, every day it’s a new threatening disaster that strikes this country.
California: HSUS and Other Radical Groups Defeated But Gearing Up for a Second Round
Contact members of the state Assembly Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife Today!
Yesterday, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and other radical anti-hunting groups suffered defeat when Senate Bill 1221 failed to pass in the state Assembly Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife. Unfortunately, this bill was authorized for reconsideration by this same committee as early as next Tuesday, July 3. Members of the state Assembly Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife need to hear from every sportsmen and gun owner in California urging them to OPPOSE SB 1221. Let committee members know that California cannot afford to let the political agenda of animal rights extremists decide hunting regulations in the state. Hunting in ALL forms is an important tool needed to generate revenue for state conservation projects and to manage wildlife. It is also a long-standing American heritage that must be preserved. Contact information for committee members can be found here.
SB 1221, introduced by state Senator Ted Lieu (D-28), would ban hunting bears and bobcats with dogs. Hunting with dogs is a tradition that continues to be practiced across the country. Many dog breeds with select characteristics for hunting can be traced back for thousands of years. Seventeen states allow bear hunting with dogs. The use of hounds for hunting has never been shown to have an adverse impact on wildlife numbers. Biologists and other wildlife experts determine regulations and bag limits, just as they do with other hunting seasons.
SB 1221 is a bill sponsored by HSUS – a group that supports banning all hunting with or without dogs. Its President, Wayne Pacelle, has been quoted as saying: “We are going to use the ballot box and the democratic process to stop all hunting in the United States … We will take it species by species until all hunting is stopped in California. Then we will take it state by state.” In 2003, HSUS unsuccessfully championed California Assembly Bill 342 that would have banned all hunting with hounds. It now seems to be taking a deceptive and incremental approach to accomplish the same goal with SB 1221. We cannot let an organization whose sole purpose is to destroy America’s hunting heritage succeed.
Please forward this alert to your family, friends and fellow sportsmen across California asking them to also CALL and E-MAIL members of the state Assembly Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife and urge them to OPPPOSE SB 1221. HSUS is attempting to ban this particular form of hunting today but it will be back for many other forms of hunting in the future.
This alert is posted to California: HSUS and Other Radical Groups Defeated But Gearing Up for a Second Round.
June 23, 2012
Bill Whittle -
Critical Second Amendment Ruling–Federal Court Defends Right to Keep and Bear Arms
Posted on June 22, 2012
The United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois ruled this week that it is unconstitutional for Chicago to treat people with non-violent misdemeanor convictions the same as convicted felons. The NRA-supported case, Gowder v. Chicago, involves plaintiff Shawn Gowder, who was convicted as a first-time offender for mere possession of a firearm in violation of Illinois law in 1995. His misdemeanor record did not block him from getting a state Firearm Owner’s Identification card, so he could still legally possess a gun in Illinois.
Nonetheless, when Mr. Gowder, who lives in a high crime area of Chicago, began the process to legally acquire a handgun to keep in his home for self-defense (a process required following the McDonald decision), the Chicago police denied his application. Mr. Gowder sued the city, maintaining that Chicago’s law banning non-violent misdemeanants from possessing guns in their homes for self-defense is unconstitutionally vague, and that it violates the Second Amendment.
“This ruling sends a powerful message that the Second Amendment cannot be eliminated by a city ordinance,” said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox. “This ruling, in its defense of the Second Amendment and its call for clarity on this issue, shines a light on the long-running efforts of the City of Chicago to deny residents the right to keep firearms for self-defense. This ruling is a victory for the people of Chicago and for gun owners everywhere.”
Federal District Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan found the city’s ordinance unconstitutionally vague because it “does not provide a person of ordinary intelligence a reasonable opportunity to know what is prohibited.” That’s because the ordinance denies permits to persons convicted of “unlawful use of a weapon.” But, while Mr. Gowder was convicted under a state law that refers to “unlawful use of a weapon,” that law also applies to people who merely possess firearms.
The court also agreed with Mr. Gowder’s Second Amendment challenge, finding there was no evidence that Mr. Gowder is “a risky person or embodies the type of violent citizen” not entitled to exercise the right to arms. And, as the court pointed out, non-violent misdemeanants were not historically prohibited from possessing guns, either in 1791 when the Second Amendment was passed, or in 1868 when the Fourteenth Amendment applied the Second Amendment to the states. In a thorough and scholarly analysis, the court made clear that it would reach this same conclusion under any standard of review that might be applied; however, the court rejected an intermediate level of scrutiny for infringements on the core Second Amendment right, holding that those should be subject to the highest level of review.
Other provisions of Chicago’s ordinance remain under scrutiny in the NRA-supported case of Benson v. City of Chicago, which is now pending before a different judge in the same court.
Cops accused of stealing citizens’ guns
Lawsuit says police engaging in ‘deliberate theft and they know it’
A pair of California cities and the state’s Department of Justice are facing a federal lawsuit today because, plaintiffs claim, the police confiscated firearms during investigations but now refuse to return them – even after the subjects of the inquiries were cleared of any wrongdoing.
The Second Amendment Foundation, which has joined gun owners Douglas Churchill and Peter Lau in the lawsuit, say the cities are engaging in “deliberate theft of personal property.”
“We saw this sort of property theft following Hurricane Katrina,” SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb recalled in a statement, “and we took that case to federal court and won. Government agencies simply cannot seize private property and refuse to give it back by playing bureaucratic games.”
Gene Hoffman, chairman of the Calguns Foundation, which has also joined the case, explains, “Law-abiding Californians should not be forced to seek out expensive legal representation just to get back what is rightfully theirs in the first place.”
According to court documents, Lau’s firearms were confiscated by the Oakland Police Department when authorities were investigating his brother’s suicide. Eventually, his guns were returned, all except one rifle the police deemed an “assault weapon.” Lau’s attorneys dispute the classification.
Churchill’s firearms were confiscated by the San Francisco Police Department in January 2011 as part of an investigation, but the district attorney dismissed charges less than a month later. Nonetheless, police refuse to return seven of Churchill’s weapons – including a Remington .22-caliber rifle and a Winchester 20-guage shotgun, among others.
Police, court documents suggest, are relying on a letter from the California Department of Justice instructing the police not to return firearms unless the alleged owners can present “proof of ownership,” though the same letter admits the state may have no official records for “long guns” like Churchill’s Remington.
In Churchill’s case, however, police officers presented him with a receipt for the firearms they confiscated. Churchill’s attorneys argue that’s good enough and the police need to return the weapons they took.
“In California, the Evidence Code makes it clear that simple possession is proof of ownership of almost all types of common property, including firearms,” claims Don Kilmer, counsel for the plaintiffs. “The California Department of Justice is misleading police departments in such a way that they violate the rights of gun owners who were investigated and found to have not violated the law.”
“What the police departments are doing is a deliberate theft of personal property, and they know it,” added Gottlieb. “Our partners at the Calguns Foundation have properly argued that this is inexcusable, and they are right.”
Names as defendants in the case are the cities of Oakland and San Francisco and their respective police departments, California Attorney General Kamala Harris and the state’s Department of Justice. The case is currently before the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of California.
Officials in San Francisco did not respond to WND requests for comment, and in Oakland, officials explained they had not yet seen the legal action, so would withhold comment.
The SAF claims to be the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 650,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control. In addition to the landmark McDonald v. Chicago Supreme Court Case, SAF has previously funded successful firearms-related suits against the cities of Los Angeles; New Haven, CT; New Orleans; Chicago and San Francisco on behalf of American gun owners, a lawsuit against the cities suing gun makers and numerous amicus briefs holding the Second Amendment as an individual right.
In addition to the landmark McDonald v. Chicago Supreme Court case, SAF has been involved in a number of cases in recent years:
- SAF sued the state of California over a “vague” gun ban over a case in which a man twice was jailed and then cleared. The focal point is the definition of an “assault weapon.” The statute’s definition of weapons is so “vague and ambiguous,” the group contends, that one man was arrested on two different occasions for violations but ultimately cleared of any wrongdoing. “It’s an insult to be arrested once for violating a law that is so vague and ambiguous that law enforcement officers cannot tell the difference between what is and what is not a legal firearm under this statute,” said Gottlieb, “but to be arrested and jailed twice for the same offense is an outrage.”
- In New York, the organization has asked for a summary judgment that would strike New York City’s $340 triennial fee for just owning a handgun. The legal brief explains that under U.S. Supreme Court rulings “the right to keep a handgun in the home for self-defense is a part of the ‘core’ of the Second Amendment’s protections.” The case, brought by SAF, the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association and individuals including an electrical contractor, a paramedic, CPA and woodworker, argues, “The city’s $340 fee is inherently prohibitive and serves the impermissible purpose of discouraging the exercise of constitutional rights. While the city can charge a nominal fee to defray costs, the $340 fee is not nominal, and has never been calculated to defray costs.”
- The organization has sued New Jersey and officials and judges over procedures that allowed them to refuse firearms permits for a kidnap victim, a man who carries large amounts of cash for his business and a civilian FBI employee who fears attacks from radical Islamists. The permissions were denied on the grounds people had not shown a “justifiable need.” “Law-abiding New Jersey citizens have been arbitrarily deprived of their ability to defend themselves and their families for years under the state’s horribly crafted laws,” said a SAF spokesman. “The law grants uncontrolled discretion to police chiefs and other public officials to deny license applications even in cases where the applicant has shown a clear and present danger exists.”
- The SAF filed a case on behalf of an honorably discharged veteran from the Vietnam War and names as defendants Attorney General Eric Holder and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on behalf of Jefferson Wayne Schrader. The question is whether the state of Maryland can deprive an individual of the right to possess a weapon over a misdemeanor. Schrader had been convicted of misdemeanor assault relating to a fight involving a man who previously had assaulted him in Annapolis. But he was denied the opportunity to receive a shotgun as a gift or to purchase a handgun for personal protection.
- SAF filed a claim against Maryland for a man who alleged the state was violating the Second Amendment by refusing to renew his handgun permit. Raymond Woollard originally was issued a carry permit after a man broke into his home during a family event in 2002. Woollard’s permit was renewed in 2005 after the defendant in the case was released from prison. But state officials later refused to renew the permit, even though the intruder now lives some three miles from Woollard.
- SAF sued Westchester County, N.Y., because officials there were requiring that residents have a “good cause” to ask for a handgun permit. The federal lawsuit alleges the requirement conflicts with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the Second Amendment establishes a personal right to “keep and bear arms.” Individual plaintiffs in the case are Alan Kachalsky and Christina Nikolov, both Westchester County residents whose permit applications were denied.
2nd Amendment Still MIA In Maryland As Federal Judge Refuses To Support His Own Ruling
In early March, Federal Judge Benson Legg ruled unconstitutional the provision in Maryland law requiring a “good and substantial reason” be provided by anyone applying for a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Such a contingency “impermissibly infringes on the right to keep and bear arms” wrote the Judge in his opinion. (1)
The ruling had come down in the case of Woollard v Sheridan. In 2010, Plaintiff Raymond Woollard attempted to renew his permit to carry concealed but was refused because he had not provided to Maryland State Police “…sufficient evidence ‘to support apprehended fear’…” therefore failing the “good and substantial reason” test. (2)
Judge Legg’s decision had literally introduced 2nd Amendment rights into one of the most liberal states in the nation. Previously a “may issue” state, meaning a license to carry a concealed weapon “may” be issued according to the mood of the Maryland State Police, residents would in future live in a “shall issue” state where permits must be issued upon demand to qualified (neither criminal nor mentally impaired) applicants.
“A citizen may not be required to offer a good and substantial reason why he should be permitted to exercise his rights. The right’s existence is all the reason he needs.” So wrote the Judge in his original opinion. (2)
One month later, however, Judge Legg proved himself too cowardly to stand behind his own ruling. Granting a motion filed by liberal Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler, Legg stayed his earlier decision to uphold the Constitutional rights of Maryland residents until May 23rd when, upon hearing from both sides, he will decide whether to grant a permanent stay. As a result, the requirement to provide a “good and substantial reason” remains in force.
And upon what argument from the Attorney General did courageous Constitutional advocate Benson Legg base his decision to stay the 2nd Amendment rights of Maryland residents?
In the 2011, 4th Circuit case United States v Masciandaro, the majority ruled that law abiding citizens have the right to keep and bear arms, not just in the home—as Maryland would have it—but, within the bounds of the law, wherever they wished. In short, law abiding Americans have the right to keep and bear arms. (3)
But although they concurred with the opinion, 2 of the judges hedged their decision with the following, pathetic drivel: “…we do not wish to be even minutely responsible for some unspeakably tragic act of mayhem because in the peace of our judicial chambers we miscalculated as to Second Amendment rights.” (3)
Using this extraordinary example of judicial cowardice, the Maryland Attorney General suggested that if the stay were not granted by Judge Legg, “unspeakably tragic acts of mayhem” committed by the state’s concealed carry holders would somehow result and be on his head! In short, it is far too dangerous to permit Maryland citizens the free exercise of their God given and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms.
On May 23rd, in the courtroom of federal Judge Benson Legg, residents of Maryland will discover whether or not they must continue to provide “good and substantial reason” before being permitted to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights.
Should Barack Obama be given another 4 years of rule in Mordor on the Potomac, the Maryland requirement could soon extend to the exercise of speech, religion and assembly as well. Isn’t THAT something to look forward to.
By Doug Book, Coach Is Right
To read more use these links:
The world’s largest army…America’s hunters! I had never thought about this….
A blogger added up the deer license sales in just a handful of states and arrived at a striking conclusion:
There were over 600,000 hunters this season in the state of Wisconsin.
Allow me to restate that number:
Over the last several months Wisconsin’s hunters became the eighth largest army in the world.
More men under arms than in Iran.
More than France and Germany combined.
These men deployed to the woods of a single American state, Wisconsin, to hunt with firearms, and no one was killed.
That number pales in comparison to the 750,000 who hunted the woods of Pennsylvania, and Michigan’s 700,000 hunters, all of whom have now returned home safely.
Toss in a quarter million hunters in West Virginia and it literally establishes the fact that the hunters of those four states alone would comprise the largest army in the world…..And then add in the total number of hunters in the other 46 states..It’s millions more.
America will forever be safe from foreign invasion with that kind of home-grown firepower.
Hunting — it’s not just a way to fill the freezer. It’s a matter of national security.
That’s why all enemies, foreign and domestic, want to see us disarmed.
Food for thought when next we consider gun control.
Have A Great Day!!
Overall it’s true so if we disregard some assumptions that hunters don’t possess the same skills as soldiers the question would still remain, what army of 2 million would want to face 30, 40, 50 million armed citizens.
Don’t ever allow gun control or confiscation of guns,
for the sake of our freedom.