Walls of the City reminds us (by way of Sharp As A Marble) that while we continue to speak of ourselves as the Land of the Free, we certainly are no longer:
30 years ago, you’d just assume that anything that wasn’t obviously contrary to morality was legal. That is, you’d have a built-in default setting of assuming liberty. And that assumption of liberty would then propel you to take actions.
But now, you have to assume that many things that aren’t contrary to morality are illegal anyway. And so you now have — quel coincidence! — a built-in default setting of assuming prohibition. And that assumption that many of the things you’d like to do are illegal and criminal thereby reduces your desire to take any action at all.
Can you name all of the crimes in your state that are felonies? Can you name all of the crimes in your state that are misdemeanors? Have you ever uttered the words, “Is that legal?” without actually being able to intuitively guess whether it is or not?
Welcome to the club. And the problem.
You should go and read the whole thing. It’s well worth your time, and even has some Latin words in it!
The Country for whom I would have probably died (in Vietnam – had I not been a disabled 4-F) no longer exists. She does on paper (The Constitution), but that was long ago, and like Benghazi, is no longer relevant.
Did you know The United States has more prisoners per capita than any other Nation? How many of these folks zigged when they should have zagged? Or were caught with weed. Or carrying a gun for protection?
Lets stop electing people to legislatures to pass more incomprehensible laws. Lets elect them to remove laws. And hold those accountable who messed everything up. THEY are the people who should be afraid. And incarcerated!
…but all is not, yet, lost…
SAN FRANCISCO — They’re called national security letters and the FBI issues thousands of them a year to banks, phone companies and other businesses demanding customer information. They’re sent without judicial review and recipients are barred from disclosing them.
On Friday, a federal judge in San Francisco declared the letters unconstitutional, saying the secretive demands for customer data violate the First Amendment.
The government has failed to show that the letters and the blanket non-disclosure policy “serve the compelling need of national security,” and the gag order creates “too large a danger that speech is being unnecessarily restricted,” U.S. District Judge Susan Illston wrote.
She ordered the FBI to stop issuing the letters, but put that order on hold for 90 days so the U.S. Department of Justice can pursue an appeal to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
The DOJ said it is reviewing the decision.
FBI counter-terrorism agents began issuing the letters after Congress passed the USA Patriot Act in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
More at the above link. Apparently, not everyone in government supports the push toward totalitarianism.
Funny how the congress keeps passing more legislation ‘to protect us’, and instead constrains us.
Miss Cellania brings us the little-known tale of a man born a slave, who became a prodigious lawman: Bass Reeves.
Over his 32-year career as a Deputy U.S. Marshal, Bass Reeves arrested 3,000 felons, killed 14 men, and was never shot himself. His reputation for persistence, his total fearlessness, his skills with a gun, and his ability to outsmart outlaws struck terror into lawbreakers in what we now call Oklahoma. Although other colorful characters made their way into our pop culture, Bass was the real badass of the Old West
The marshal was famous for fair-mindedness and was impossible to bribe or corrupt. In 1902 he arrested his own son, Benny, for murdering his wife (Reeves’ daughter-in-law). Benny had fled to the badlands after the crime, and no other marshal was willing to pursue him. As distasteful as the task was, Reeves brought him back, and Benny served twenty years at Leavenworth.
We’ve secretly replaced the verbiage of the unconstitutional executive orders you’ve issued against the Second Amendment as though they were for the First Amendment. Because all of the Bill of Rights amendments have equal status, per Supreme Court decree…(as corrected)
Published January 16, 2013
FoxNews.com (with amendments)
The following is a list, provided by the White House, of executive actions President Obama plans to take to address
gun violence hate speech - defined as speech the government doesn’t like..
1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system. (There’s a background check for publishing, uttering, worshiping or redressing grievances?)
2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system. (see #1)
3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system. (#1 again)
4. Direct the Attorney General to review categories of individuals prohibited from
having a gun speaking,or worshiping freely and openly to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks, or redressing grievances.
5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized
gun book, speech, or publication of utterance..
6. Publish a letter from
ATF FTC t o federally licensed gun dealers to bookstores, publishers and Internet Service Providers showing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers speakers and utterers.
7. Launch a national safe and responsible
gun ownership free speech and exercising of rights campaign.
8. Review safety standards for
gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission) censorship, both media and personal. (Free Speech Czar)
9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace
guns utterances recovered in criminal investigations hate speech crimes.
10. Release a DOJ report analyzing information on
lost and stolen guns plagiarized speech and make it widely available to law enforcement.
11. Nominate an
ATF director Free Speech Czar.
12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active
shooter hate speaker situations.
13. Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent
gun speech violence and prosecute gun hate crime.
14. Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of
gun speech violence.
15. Direct the Attorney General to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of
new gun safety censorship technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative censoring technologies.
16. Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about
guns in their homes their personal beliefs, philosophies, religions and political positions.
17. Release a letter to health care providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting
threats of violence speech with which they disagree to law enforcement authorities.
18. Provide incentives for schools to hire school
resource censorship officers.
19. Develop model emergency response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education to prevent speech with which the government disagrees.
20. Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover, because the government knows better than your person physician..
21. Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within ACA exchanges.
22. Commit to finalizing mental health parity regulations.
23. Launch a national dialogue led by
Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan ( the Free Speech Czar) on mental health, because, after all, anyone who owns a firearm or who speaks out about their rights must be crazy. Right?
Mr. President, The First Amendment is inviolate, except for yelling fire in a crowded theater, libel, slander or child pornography. The Second Amendment deserves the same respect. A law-abiding citizen has the right to burn a flag, or call a jar containing a crucifix and urine art or many other things. Millions of law-abiding American citizens have the same rights to own, possess, transfer and carry firearms. None of the recent heinous acts have anything to do with 99% of the population – stop inhibiting their rights!
Gun Control is not about Crime – It’s about Control!
There has been much gnashing of teeth in the past few days over the most recent school shooting. Surely, the fact that I must use the term ‘most recent’ gives one pause. Or the term ‘school shooting’ that doesn’t involve marksmanship practice.
And the Internet is all abuzz with sorrowful pleas for ‘they’ to do ‘something’. I believe it’s human nature in that we all feel so helpless when such things occur. We want ‘something’ to be done.
The President himself just released his proposals, including another assault weapons ban, a magazine capacity ban and restrictions on private sales of firearms. (Of course, none of these measures would have stopped the homicidal, unbalanced criminal from the recent massacre of innocents.)
I’ve mentioned recent events a couple of times, and even wrote a couple yet unpublished posts, but many other bloggers have addressed the issues in a much more eloquent and informed manner than I. If you’ve not seen these three recent postings, you should go to the links and read. And think about what you have read. And hope The Nation has enough wisdom to absorb these things, as well. Links and excerpts below…
~The mental health community has morphed away from actually treating and committing people due to numerous lawsuits by, among others, the ACLU. Also, due to ‘privacy’ concerns, many institutions will not report a person with mental health problems to NICS or even to local police. You can go find articles that point out that the ONLY way to get someone committed is to have charges filed against someone.~
~A few school systems use School Resource Officers (SROs) who are either retired LEOs or are LEOs specifically hired to work in schools both for security. those SROs are armed, have full police powers and are directly connected to the local police departments via radio if they need assistance/backup.
Many were funded under programs from the Federal Government after Columbine…
However, those programs were de-funded by the current administration.~
Stop Teaching Our Kids To Kill by Dave Grossman, Lt. Col. USA (ret.) (via Maddened Fowl)
~Research on the background of our juvenile mass murderers show they have one thing in common: they ALL dropped out of life and filled their lives with nothing but violent movies and violent video games. The sickest video games and the sickest movies are very very sick indeed. And the sick sick kids who immerse themselves in this “entertainment” are very sick indeed.~And it is a world-wide phenomenon! Germany has had two mass murders in their high schools with body counts that beat Columbine. England had a massacre in the kindergarten class in Dunblain Scotland, tragically forecasting Sandy Hook. Canada had the Taber, Alberta school massacre. Finland has had three school massacres. In Norway the killer got on an island and killed all their kids. In China killers are going in the classrooms with knives and gutting and hacking the kids. In Belgium a sicko got in the day care center and hacked 12 babies in the cribs, dressed as the Joker from the Batman movie. (All those European gun laws made THEM real safe, eh?)And we though it wouldn’t happen here!?
And you think its over now? The worst is yet to come. We will reap what we sow for a generation to come…. Until we stop teaching our kids to kill.~
~My extra bag of rice, my gun, my ammo, my kerosene heater are of real value to my survival. I used no government funds to purchase those items. In fact the purchase of those items only helped contribute positively to a failing economy. I have never harmed a single person. I am of no threat to you. Your desire to label me crazy and limit my rights will only serve to put me at more risk and it has ZERO chance of doing anything for you other than to make you feel good.
The mental health crisis/real school security, video games as parenting, and the desire to absolve our guilt – to feel better – all need to be addressed and solved, lest these behaviors continue. And lest our rights be taken away for no good reason.
~Know the facts. Know the “official facts” even if you choose to doubt them — and get expert advice. The “rifle found in a car” was contentious issue here at Roseholme Cottage, until Tam found video of it being removed: it’s a scary, black…
pump-actionshotgun! She was pretty sure of make and model from the low-rez image, thanks to her years shooting and working at gun stores. (Remember, the media talking heads reporting this stuff know a lot less about guns than you do — and they’re being briefed by police who are used to dumbing things down for them.)~
~Know your audience. In my blog, I can talk about the deterrent effect of removing legal barriers to teachers and school employees being armed if they chose to be (and qualify for whatever carry permit their state offers!). In the lunchroom at work, not so much. Don’t be That Guy; we can’t afford it just now.~
OKAY, that’s really four, not three! Regardless, take a few minutes and read each of these wise bloggers’ entire posts. I’d say doing so is for the children, but that would just be pandering. It’s for ALL OF US!
THIS JUST IN
It’s being reported by multiple sources that one shooter is dead, a second remains at large.
Please keep the innocent souls in this horrible event in your thoughts and prayers.
Of course, even with few facts, the usual folks are clamoring for more gun control – as if criminals obey all the current laws.
Today is sentencing day for Jared Loughner. He’s the young man who plead guilty to shooting 6 people dead, and wounding 12 others, including U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ).
The 24-year-old had pleaded guilty three months ago to 19 federal charges under an agreement that guarantees he will spend the rest of his life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Today, many of his victims will face their attacker and make victim statements. Rep. Giffords is expected to have her husband read hers.
Now, please understand. The man has already plead guilty. This is just sentencing. Of course, I know if someone shot me, I’d like to face them in court.
But, it’s mostly for show. I expect the media to be there. (snark)
This means one of the other issues has again surfaced. Mental disease and the right of gun ownership. It’s expected that the current administration will soon make some-kind of appeal to change current firearms law to somehow invade medical privacy to make certain whacky folk can’t get their hands on a firearm. Legally. Of course, nothing would prevent them from using knives or bombs. Or stealing one. Or a dozen. And we all know how efficient such a system will be. Like the one that put Ted Kennedy on the No-Fly List.
And, you can bet there will be attempts to make seeking counseling or other mild mental health assistance to make it’s way to the governmental no-guns-allowed list.
Yeah, I’m certain it’ll work well to protect us all. Just look how safe New York and Chicago are from gun-related crime. (snark)
Back when I was working full-time, and attending college full time, my life was pretty much work and school. I got to go shooting every once and a while, partied with friends, and went on rare dates. Really rare. (sigh)
Being an Administration of Justice major, I ate, slept and breathed everything law enforcement. Watched all the ‘good’ cop shows (like Police Story) and read Joseph Wambaugh books.
And one day it suddenly occurred to me, Hey, my town’s PD had a ride-along program! How cool would that be to go on patrol!
So I signed up.
I wasn’t long before I was riding shotgun in a patrol car, with a veteran officer, graveyard shift. When better to get into the action, then on the prowl at night?
Apparently, in a small college town after midnight, there must be better times. We spent the first couple of hours parked in a grocery store parking lot, across the street from a convenience store. Sitting surveillance on
young punks juvenile delinquents misguided yutes who were loitering around the outside of the store, occasionally entering to buy a soda or harass the clerk. Officer Krupke (not his real name) was peering through a pair of binoculars at them, muttering under his breath, “They’re squirrels! I KNOW they’re squirrels”. I decided from his lack of colorful language he must be Southern Baptist, Mormon or something…
And nothing happened. Eventually, we went on patrol in the nearby middle-class residential neighborhoods. It was about 0300 by then, and it was dead out. But the officer knew what to look for and had excellent vision in the dark.
Suddenly, he threw the car into park and bolted from the driver’s seat! In some shadows next to a house, he spotted a subject lurking. He grabbed him, cuffed him and brought him back to the car for interrogation. Turned out he was a drunken college kid looking for a place to relieve himself. High crime in Collegeville!
After processing the kid, we resumed patrol. Another home nearby had apparently been burgled. We responded, and were the fourth car to arrive. Obviously, a hot night of crime in our little town! I walked the crime scene with the officers, listened to questioned posed to the homeowner, and was all-in-all pretty bored. But I noticed the reported point-of-entry, the bathroom window glass, was on the outside of the house! I mentioned this to the officers, who quickly had me bundled away ‘for my safety’. I guess they wanted to make certain the homeowner committed himself fully in his lying false police report before arresting him. And this wise-ass college kid could have spoiled their fun.
We resumed patrol and finished out the shift. No felonies, no high-speed chases, no fights to the death. No doughnuts! Officer Krupke did take a quick spin on the freeway to show me how fast he could go. THAT was pretty cool.
Now that I’m back in that small town, I found myself wondering if they still had a Ride-Along Program? But, it would take me 5 minutes to get out of the car, and I wouldn’t go unless I could carry, so it probably won’t happen!
Mom With A Gun reminds us of the wise words of Inspector Harry Callahan, aka ‘Dirty Harry’, who said in his second movie, Magnum Force, “A man’s GOT to know his limitations.”
Tammy quotes the ever-quotable Kathy Jackson of Cornered Cat, who said,
If you are concerned enough to pull your gun out of its holster, you should be concerned enough to pull your phone out of your pocket and call for backup. Except in cases of extreme and immediate need, law enforcement officers won’t try to clear a house by themselves, without backup. Why should you?
I’ve been guilty of letting my emotions overtake my training. On mumble-mumble occasion(s), I approached my home (former home) and found a door breached. All my training (NRA ‘Gun in the Home’ trainer, CCW licensing and Az DPS CCW trainer) said back away, pull your cell telephone and call the police from a safe location. Do NOT attempt to engage.
And yet I did. And I felt compelled to enter my breached house and ‘clear’ it. Without backup. Stuff I’d drilled into my own students not to do.
Machismo? Ego? Anger? Yep, all of it. Fortunately, no burglars were present. I think I know better, now.
I do now reside in a better neighborhood.
Hopefully, I’ll never have to find out.
I’m a firearms addict. I freely discussed this in a previous post (Gun Jones). And most of my adult life, I’ve held moderately-paying or even low paying jobs. But, I almost always fed my Jones. Sometimes was financially irresponsible in so doing.
Part of this was my addictive personality; part my having been but a callow youth.
But, as an adult lurching forward (see previous post) into the so-called ‘Golden Years’, on medical disability, I must say: I can no longer afford to purchase firearms. I must pay rent and purchase food. First. Depending on which agency defines it, I’m on the cusp of the poverty level.
Fortunately, I’ve two fine guns. The last one was purchased in 1995.
The Armed Lutheran got me to thinking of this, as he addresses the President’s recent remarks about wanting more
gun people control. A snippet:
“And so what I’m trying to do is to get a broader conversation about how do we reduce the violence generally. Part of it is seeing if we can get an assault weapons ban reintroduced, but part of it is also looking at other sources of the violence, because frankly, in my hometown of Chicago, there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns.”
The president’s comments in the debate, to me, indicate just another misunderstanding of human nature. Like his incessant desire to tax the “rich” and give to the “poor”, thinking those policies will have no effect on human behavior, the idea that the cost of guns is what drives crime is extremely flawed. If only guns cost more, criminals would not use guns in crimes. Right. As if criminals are so cost conscious. If we get rid of cheap guns, only affluent criminals can afford them, I guess.
The real problem with the idea of banning “cheap” guns is the effect it has on self defense. Most victims of crime in inner cities fit into a specific demographic. Low income, mostly minority, many on government assistance, like housing. The cost of a Glock, a Sig, or an H&K is simply beyond these citizens. Laugh, though we might, at the Hi-Points, Cobras, Ravens, Lorcins, and Jiminez pistols these guns are often the only affordable option for home and self-defense for those trapped in low-income housing in the inner city. The impoverished, law-abiding citizens in these situations will be denied the ability to defend themselves if you ban “cheap” guns. As with all gun control, such a ban would leave these poor souls without protection in the name of protecting them from gun violence. It would leave them vulnerable, and defenseless.
I still cannot afford even a Hi-Point. Guess I’m one of the lucky ones…