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2nd amendmentOl Remus and the Woodpile Report

In addition to trashing habeas corpus and posse comitatus, in addition to authorizing warrantless searches and mandatory health insurance, Congress is considering another outrageous gun law. This one not only disregards the Second and Fifth Amendments at least, it relies heavily on ex-post facto provisions. They’re crossing the line, again. The central government is charged with defending the people’s rights and civil liberties, not to diminish them and demand the people show cause why they shouldn’t.

A right requires no justification, no demonstration of need, it merely is. The people do and should have the right to keep and bear arms of their own choosing, the same small arms police officers or light infantry have, if they wish, including fully automatic weapons. There’s no such thing as common sense infringement, or reasonable infringement. Infringement is infringement. It’s specifically forbidden.

The  only difference between a police officer and a private citizen is that the former has the authority and duty to intervene in situations that the ordinary citizen should, or even must, avoid. If either needs a firearm for any non-sporting purpose, though, he or she needs it for exactly the same reason. The definition of a weapon that is “reasonable” for legitimate self-defense is therefore, “Any weapon that is routinely available to law enforcement agencies.”
William Levinson at

The “not one more inch” position is necessary but insufficient. It assumes and accepts infringement already in place. Nor can we vote for or against a right and continue to call it a right, as when we vote for candidates who conditionally support the Second Amendment. Doing so implies we’ve obliged ourselves to additional infringement when they compromise, which they will art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif.

Defending gun rights with arguments about self-defense and sporting use are not so much wrong as irrelevant, as are notions about wider gun ownership suppressing crime. The Second Amendment isn’t conditional on the crime rate. As a practical matter, murder will continue to be illegal whether the victim is shot with a gun or beaten to death with a can of tomato juice. Defenders of gun rights are unwise to use these arguments, the fundamental issue was settled definitively in 1789. It’s not useful to reargue black letter law which defines and defends a right, there’s nothing to gain.

All federal gun control acts, all state and municipal gun laws and all their enforcement provisions are illegal on their face. They are non-laws, indefensible and of no standing. Proposing and passing them into law was illegal, their ongoing enforcement is illegal. Legislation to mend parts of them is illegal because it concedes and endorses the illegal laws it seeks to modify. The only legitimate stance is complete repeal, root and branch, to be followed by indictments of those who broadened and extended them, and severance with prejudice for those prosecutors who enforced them, down to and including the Attorney General.

Appeals to the Supreme Court are also wrong, the court awarded itself the authority to rule on the Constitutionality of laws, it’s a power it does not have other than by acquiescence. The Bill of Rights was written by the people, in plain language. The Supreme Court can’t legitimately presume to speak in its place, rights which predate the republic don’t exist now only as they define them, they were recognized as-is by the same document that brought the court into existence, and of the two, the court is the lesser. Rights are the purpose of governance, the court is only part of the plumbing.

Nor is trust in the good faith of the Supreme Court warranted. For one egregious example of their malfeasance, outright betrayal to be plain, it is they who elevated the Commerce Clause above our civil liberties. It’s a clause intended to make commerce regular from one state to any other state, to keep Connecticut from imposing a surcharge on peanuts from Virginia for instance. By knowingly expanding this into an enabling act to disarm the people, the court placed itself above the law and, therefore, outside the law.

This is a bare bones history:

The National Firearms Act of 1934 specifies minimum barrel lengths and other mandatory features, criminalizes the possession of silencers and fully automatic firearms.

The Federal Firearms Act of 1938 regulates sales of guns and ammunition

The Gun Control Act of 1968 introduces the FFL system, ends buying guns by mail order, limits importing military arms, and creates a ‘sporting use’ requirement for civilian firearms. It has since been disclosed the Nazi Weapons Law of 1938 was used as a template art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif.

Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986, modifies some abuses of the 1968 Act, adds the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban and a total ban of fully auto weapons not registered as of 1986.

The Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990

The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993, creates the federal background check system.

The 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, known as the “assault weapons ban”. It sunsetted in 2004.

The HUD/Smith and Wesson agreement of 2000, in which Smith & Wesson “voluntarily” changed the design, distribution and marketing of their guns.

These gun laws are what comes from being “reasonable”. This is what comes of one-way “compromises”. It’s no accident. A year or two may be tactics, but three quarters of a century is strategy. Sadly, nominal gun rights organizations have been accomplices every step of the way, starting with the NRA’s support for the taproot of all gun control laws in 1934. The NRA also supported art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif the 1968 Gun Control Act in exchange for a gift bag of “feel good” exceptions. Having been rolled again, yet learning nothing from it, the NRA assured its members in 1990 it was “reasonable” to support art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif the Gun-Free School Zones idea. Now ‘sporting arms’ they thought were exempt from the worst sanctions of the 1968 Act have been reclassified as assault weapons, no surprise, and guns in schools is the NRA’s new best idea.

The huge body of federal, state and local law would seem enough for anti-gun partisans to high-five, declare victory and go away, and it would be if there weren’t a truly tyrannical end being served, namely: total disarmament. They all but say as much. Their catch-phrase “moving us forward” means exactly that. It’s an all-in effort. Opponents of civil liberties aren’t the witless clowns their public statements would lead us to believe. To them, existing laws are watering tables at a marathon:

It is time to sit down and have a sensible, reasonable debate about gun control, and express an openness to banning assault weapons.
Rep. Tompson of California

The status quo isn’t acceptable. There’s got to be a way to put reasonable restrictions, particularly as we look at assault weapons.
Sen. Blumenthal of Connecticut.

Although rights aren’t conditional on consequences, in a truly “sensible, reasonable debate” the facts would embarrass the anti-gun side out of the room, if they were embarrassable. Gun control doesn’t control the bad guy’s guns, it cuts down the return fire. Look at Chicago in its Al Capone days before gun control, and now with “common sense” gun laws tightly in place—the current body count is approaching 200% of 1929’s. Their answer is more gun laws. These are the same people who insist on borrowing more to pay the national debt.

Chicago – The city is worse off now in the category of murder than at the height of the era that has driven Chicago’s reputation for almost a century, Capone’s “gangland” Chicago… Forty-two people were killed in Chicago last month, the most in January since 2002, and far worse than the city’s most notorious crime era at the end of the Roaring Twenties. In January 1929 there were 26 killings.
Chuck Goudie at

Meanwhile, the NRA’s leadership conducts itself as if we held the weak hand at the table. We don’t. They’re our cards and it’s our table. Our forefathers wouldn’t have agreed to a limit on the amount of ball and powder they could carry, or to a list of muskets they were forbidden to own, or an outright ban on ownership of newfangled lever-action repeaters. Their righteous outrage and uncompromising defiance would have been immediate, unstoppable and the stuff of legend.

Full disclosure: Remus is a greybeard NRA member and considers all this a family squabble. Further, he admits capture by the classic school as seen in ancient ads featuring canoes and tall pines. Yes, this is suspiciously convenient given he’s far too old for running gunfights using ARs and the like. The principle doesn’t concern itself with this however. It concerns itself with accepting nonsense “solutions” such as background checks, which in its basic form says one man decides if it’s acceptable to him for another man to have a firearm. Background checks are just another gatekeeper for what is a non-negotiable right, and one that’s already being abused.

Combat veterans are being denied arms because they’re combat veterans. And good people are beingdisarmed when their spouse gets an order of protection—which is often nothing more than a lunge at drama during a falling out, so the fundamental method is at work once again: one person may have the arms of another taken away based on what they imagine may occur, the basis of all gun laws. Notice no gun need even be displayed, much less does a crime involving a gun need occur, save their confiscation, nor a likelihood of their use be demonstrated. One city is proposing everyone be required to notify their school district when purchasing a gun, reporting all specifics to them including the serial number. How long until this idea is folded into the background checks? How long before such notification is required before purchasing a gun? How long until the school staff has a veto too?

Background checks reveal themselves in who is to decide eligibility for gun ownership. The proposed legislation requires mental health—excuse the expression—professionals report persons they deem ineligible, and so we have one answer, the ever-reliable medicalization law-gadget. Yes, the same people who see gun possession as dangerous antisocial behavior by itself are to be yet another gatekeeper. But it gets worse. “Universal background checks” means no gun shall change hands without DC’s full knowledge and prior approval. “Universal” is a cloying term typical of them. Compliance by Responsible Citizens anxious to demonstrate they have nothing to hide is likely to meet their expectations, but compliance by thuggas is just likely to be less than “universal”. Zero is a close approximation.

“Universal background checks” is indefensible, it means you may not, for instance, trade guns with your neighbor if an otherwise unemployable clerk in DC declines to approve it, even if using misinformation from some busybody you may not even know. Perhaps said busybody sees you in New York City with a high-capacity soft drink container and, being of the opinion there’s no demonstrable need for more than seven ounces of soft drink, turns you in to the Star Chamber on false but plausible grounds. Or perhaps said busybody is your family doctor to whom you unwisely spoke frankly, not knowing he was more anti-gun than Mrs. Brady, or you imprudently confided in your counselor, not understanding he was looking to denounce you to meet his monthly quota to the Keepers of the List, cc: his credentials committee.

Once on their list of unworthies, how do you get off it? And if the disqualifying information is plainly bogus, or if you’re on their list in error, to whom shall you appeal? Would you expect the news media to interrupt their anti-gun telethon to champion your cause?

Sir, if you persist in this I shall be forced to write an angry letter to The Times. 
Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines, 20th Century Fox 1965

Despite a decades-long record of pratfalls, the NRA leadership says they’ve changed, that it’s different this time. No, it isn’t different this time. Not yet. The gate is down and the lights are flashing, but nobody sees a train coming. It’s looking like the NRA leadership is being rolled again. They contend more laws aren’t necessary, that rigorous enforcement of existing laws is the way to go. They’re talking about the almost nonexistent prosecution of thuggas of course. It doesn’t matter what they mean. It matters what DC means. Rigorous enforcement is taken by DC to mean shutting down an FFL holder if he fails to cross a “t”, for one. It means rigorous prosecution under regulations they interpret in ways we wouldn’t imagine. It means damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t sting operations. It means arrested on page one, charges dismissed on page 28, but you’re broke, good name gone and have a felony record. This has been ongoing for decades. As one apparently well-informed reader commented in a Milwaukee newspaper:

The ATF have never been the good guys. These are the psychos who murdered a man’s wife and son because he missed a court date. These are the jerks who wait for home based gun dealers to leave, then kick in their door, ransack the house, leave the guns in a pile then leave the door open. ATF is filled from top to bottom with trigger happy cowboys who have no respect for the law, no respect for citizens or their rights. They force gun shop owners to participate in strawman stings, then leave them swinging in the wind when the operations implode.

The ATF is a blot on the US law enforcement community. They are despised and ridiculed by FBI, Marshals and other legitimate LEO’s. Real cops are terrified of doing joint operations with them that may involve a weapon leaving the ATF holster.
art-link-symbol-tiny-grey-arrow-only-rev01.gif Andylit, comment, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel news article about ATF debacle, at

Pumping for fence-to-fence enforcement says the NRA leadership is bumbling into complicity with enemies of the Second Amendment once again. They can’t seem to help themselves. The suspicion is growing they’re already sorting through the babies for one to throw to the wolves. We have to wonder, if a person is chained to a post and whipped unjustly, how grateful should he be to the nice man who limits the strokes to twenty instead of thirty, yet fully endorses the whipping? That said, the NRA is not the problem, in fact, they’ve faced withering incoming fire with panache in recent weeks. Whether they’ll follow through is to be seen. Testicular fortitude is easily displayed, not so easily acted upon:

Law-abiding gun owners will not accept blame for the acts of violent or deranged criminals, nor do we believe that government should dictate what we can lawfully own and use to protect our families.
Wayne LaPierre, NRA Exec. Vice Pres, to Congressional Hearing, via Tom Foreman at

This country’s gun laws are an international embarrassment, a blotch on the nation’s honor and an insult to our history. The problem is, we the people didn’t stop them when it was easily done. Restoring the status quo to what it was before the National Firearms Act of 1934 is now said to be unthinkable, a radical notion. It isn’t. Al Capone seems safely dead. No, the radical notion is the status quo after the National Firearms Act of 1934.

There need be no ambiguity about this. Nor is it farfetched. Notice the slave laws are no longer in force, even though they had Supreme Court approval for seventy years. Is it reasonable a Constitutional Amendment invalidated the slave laws, yet another, older Amendment doesn’t invalidate the gun laws? Who today would support a “reasonable compromise” that allows owning slaves with some “common sense” conditions? Nobody. Non-negotiable is non-negotiable. And so is the right to keep and bear arms.

The enemies of gun rights are playing for absolute victory. They’re confident we won’t do the same. They’ve been misinformed. The tide is turning. It’s apparent the gun laws are beyond fixing. Anything less than throwing them out altogether amounts to a restart from some point still within their grip. Reform won’t work, it isn’t enough, not nearly. Only a clean break followed by serious fumigation is enough. It’s not only doable, it’s doable in such a way no governing body will ever again challenge this or any other right.

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