Pushing Back Against The Big Banks thumbnail

Pushing Back Against The Big Banks

By Todd Woodard

According to Bloomberg.com, three of Wall Street’s biggest municipal-bond underwriters have seen business grind to a halt in Texas after the state enacted a law that blocks governments from working with banks that have curtailed ties to the gun industry. Since the law took effect on September 1, 2021, Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., and JPMorgan Chase & Co. have not managed a single municipal-bond sale in the state, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Is your state doing enough to fight for your gun rights? This is how it gets done.

Currently before the U.S. Supreme Court. New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen will, perhaps, decide whether the Second Amendment allows the government to prohibit ordinary law-abiding citizens from carrying handguns outside the home for self-defense. On its face, this is simple. New York has had a handgun licensing system for more than 100 years. New York prohibits its citizens from carrying a handgun outside of their home without a license, and it requires permit applicants to convince a licensing officer they have “proper cause” to carry a concealed firearm. Petitioners Robert Nash and Brendan Koch argued that the New York law violates their constitutional right to bear arms. They lost at the district court level, wherein that court said: “Nash and Koch do not satisfy the ‘proper cause’ requirement because they do not ‘face any special or unique danger to [their] life.’” Eight other states have similar “show cause” laws: California, Hawaii, Rhode Island, Maryland, Delaware, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. All of their laws will be affected by the decision — hopefully, negatively. The U.S. Supreme Court was scheduled to hear oral arguments on Nov. 3.

Hit back twice as hard. A federal judge has found the Washington, D.C. city government liable for wrongfully arresting six people between 2012 and 2014 who were accused of violating its ban on carrying handguns in public. U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth’s decision could clear the way for claims for damages by as many as 4,500 people similarly arrested under the law the courts overturned in 2014, according to court filings. The Supreme Court struck down the District’s long-standing ban on handguns in a landmark 2008 ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller, which found that the Second Amendment protected individuals’ right to own a gun in the home. “The District violated the plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights by arresting them, detaining them, prosecuting them, and seizing their guns based on an unconstitutional set of D.C. laws,” Lamberth wrote.

Yes, yes D.C. did that, plain as day. We’ll see if Lamberth’s well-thought-out legal reasoning can stand scrutiny by judges above him who hate the Second Amendment.

*****

This article was published in the November issues of Gun Tests, and is reproduced with permission of the author.

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De Blasio Blames Guns After Career Criminal Attacks NY Cops

By Discover The Networks

Anti-police leftist New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio predictably blamed guns after a career criminal shot two NYPD officers responding to reports of a man with a gun on Thanksgiving Eve in the Bronx.

The shooting suspect was shot three times during the gun battle with officers. His condition has been upgraded to “serious” from “critical.” NYPD commissioner Dermot Shea noted that the suspect was a “career criminal with far too many arrests.” Shea also stated that the firearm used by the suspect was reported stolen in Georgia last year.

The officers — one male, one female — are both expected to survive, no thanks to Democrat policies and rhetoric that demoralize and demonize police.

In response, de Blasio complained vaguely that there are “too many guns out there.” He added that the criminal’s alleged use of a stolen gun is “another example of a gun from out of state, comes into our city, hurts a New Yorker” — as if the gun hopped a boxcar in Georgia, crossed state lines, and randomly shot cops all by itself.

Police Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch replied to Blasio’s unhelpful comment, “Yes there’s guns on the street, but perps aren’t afraid to carry them. They’re not afraid to put it in their belt, put it in their pocket, and pull it out on a police officer. That’s the problem.”

In the broader sense, soft-on-crime, anti-Second Amendment Democrats like de Blasio are the problem.


Bill de Blasio

52 Known Connections

Defunding the NYPD & Disbanding Plainclothes Officers Unit

In the aftermath of the May 25, 2020 death of George Floyd — a black man who died after being physically abused by a white police officer in Minneapolis — a number of U.S. cities were overrun by violent riots led by Black Lives Matter and Antifa. That chaos gave birth to a movement demanding that police departments nationwide be defunded. De Blasio joined that movement when he announced, in a June 7 press conference, a plan to “mov[e] funding from the NYPD to youth initiatives and social services.” “The details will be worked out in the budget process in the weeks ahead,” he added. “But I want people to understand that we are committed to shifting resources to ensure that the focus is on our young people.” “This is a beginning,” the mayor continued. “I want it to be abundantly clear to all New Yorkers. These are first steps to what will be 18 months of making intense change in this city…. This is a transformative moment.” He also announced that street vendor enforcement would “no longer be the responsibility of the NYPD,” and that a civilian agency would thenceforth be responsible for policing citizens’ interactions with city vendors.

On June 15, 2020, the NYPD disbanded its anti-crime unit of some 600 plainclothes officers, reassigning them to new roles in detective bureaus, neighborhood policing, and other areas.

In late June 2020, de Blasio said he had agreed to shift more than $1 billion in annual funding out of the NYPD, thereby reducing its overall annual budget from $6 billion to $5 billion. Much of the diverted money, the mayor stated, would go instead toward the improvement of youth centers and public housing.

To learn more about Bill de Blasio, click here.

EDITORS NOTE: This Discover the Networks column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

A Tale of Two Cities: Beware the Cold of Winter thumbnail

A Tale of Two Cities: Beware the Cold of Winter

By Dr. Rich Swier

A reader sent us this comparison of the cities of Chicago, Illinois and Houston, Texas. The point being made is that the environmentalists want to link violence with climate change. There is actually a Nation Whistle Blower (NWC) website where you can “Report Climate Crimes.”

According to the NWC website:

The National Whistleblower Center (NWC) is the leading nonprofit dedicated to protecting and rewarding whistleblowers around the world. We assist whistleblowers in finding legal aid, advocate for stronger whistleblower protection laws, and educate the public about whistleblowers’ critical role in protecting democracy and the rule of law.

So does crime come from the individual or the climate. Check out these interesting facts.

CHICAGO HOUSTON, TX
Population 2.7 million 2.15 million
Median Household Income $38,600 $37,000
% African-American 38.9% 24%
% Hispanic 29.9% 44%
% Asian 5.5% 6%
% Non-Hispanic White 28.7% 26%

Pretty similar until you compare the following:

Chicago, IL Houston, TX
Concealed Carry –Legal No Yes
Number of Gun Stores None 184 Dedicated gun stores plus 1500 legal places to buy guns– K-mart, sporting goods, etc.
Homicides, 2012 1,806 207
Homicides per 100K 38.4 9.6
Avg. January high temperature (F) 31 63

Conclusion:  Cold weather causes murders.  This is due to climate change.

Who were the real vigilantes in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial? thumbnail

Who were the real vigilantes in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial?

By MercatorNet – Navigating Modern Complexities

This high-profile case has reopened the debate about US gun rights and self-defense laws.


Kyle Rittenhouse — the American teenager who killed two Black Lives Matter demonstrators and injured another one— has been found not guilty by a jury. Prior to the trial, left-wing media — and even then-candidate Joe Biden— ceaselessly portrayed Rittenhouse as a white supremacist vigilante who went from one state (Illinois) to another (Wisconsin) on a mission to execute peaceful demonstrators.

As the trial developed, we learned the truth. Rittenhouse had been viciously attacked by the three demonstrators— one of whom had a criminal history— and he acted in self-defense. He has never had any association with white supremacist groups, and although he did go from one state to another, the travel distance was only 20 miles, as he had family connections in both places. Furthermore, he did not violate any law by having possession of a weapon because Wisconsin allows people to carry long-barreled weapons.

Apart from a completely unwarranted obsession with race, this case has once again opened the debate about gun rights and self-defense laws in the United States.

I, for one, do not think it is a good idea to allow an immature young man to walk around with a semiautomatic rifle — as Rittenhouse did that night. Neither do I see much merit in the Second Amendment of the US Constitution. And I believe so-called “stand-your-ground laws” need some reform.

But let’s not lose sight of the most important fact: like it or not, those laws are in the books.

This prompts an important question: should unjust laws be obeyed? Ever since Plato’s Crito, this has been a major dilemma amongst ethicists. Famously — as portrayed in Crito — Socrates refused to escape his death sentence, because he acknowledged that, although that sentence was unjust, citizens must obey the law (even if it is unjust).

Many other commentators, myself included, believe Socrates had the wrong approach. There is no moral duty to obey every unjust law. I certainly would have appreciated it if an SS agent helped someone escape after having violated one of the oppressive Nuremberg Laws.

And indeed, in the United States, there is a long tradition of jury nullification. This happens when jurors believe that a defendant is guilty of the charges, but nevertheless acquit him or her, because the concerned law is very unjust to begin with.

Jury nullification may be a moral procedure, but only insofar as it is used to acquit, never to convict. As the old Latin jurists would have it: in dubio, pro reo (in doubt, for the accused). If a defendant acted under the law, and that law is unjust, the defendant must still be acquitted. Perhaps that should serve as an occasion to begin a conversation and reform the unjust law in the future. But again, the defendant must walk.

Black Lives Matter and left-wing media do not like stand-your-ground laws or the Second Amendment, and their reasons may very well be legitimate.

But harassing a young man who acted in accordance with the law is wrong. As even CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin acknowledged, Rittenhouse may be an idiot, but he is not on trial for that. In Toobin’s words, “this is a tough case for the prosecution because it does seem like he has a plausible case of self-defense… If it were illegal to be an idiot, the prisons would be even more crowded than they are now.”

A functioning democracy such as the United States offers plenty of civil routes for legal changes to be enacted. If you don’t like a particular law, you must attempt to change the law, and you may even try to acquit people charged under unjust laws.

But, if you take action hoping to get someone convicted because you believe his or her behavior is abhorrent —even though it is still legal—, then you have lost your moral standing. In fact, there is a name for those who prefer to bypass legal procedures and harass people, all in the name of morality: vigilantes.

Precisely for that reason, the vigilante in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial was not the defendant— who, again, acted in self-defense under the existing laws. The real vigilante was the left-wing media. The Don Lemons and Joy Reids of the world were the ones who didn’t care about legal procedures, and in their dissatisfaction with the current laws, were lusting for blood.

In today’s world, those vigilantes are far more dangerous than the very few weirdos wearing KKK hoods in some remote rural area.

COLUMN BY

Gabriel Andrade

Gabriel Andrade is assistant professor of medicine at Ajman University, in the United Arab Emirates. He received a PhD from University of Zulia (Venezuela), in 2008. He worked as Titular Professor at University… More by Gabriel Andrade.

RELATED TWEET:

Why shouldn’t he be smiling? He beat the prosecution, President Biden, the Democrats, the media, the digital censors, the whole system. David 1, Goliath 0 #Rittenhouse pic.twitter.com/sEreVUN8ve

— Dinesh D’Souza (@DineshDSouza) November 21, 2021

EDITORS NOTE: This MercatorNet column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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Is The AR-15 on Trial or a Defendant?

By Charles M. Strauss

OK, I want to write this before the jury reaches a verdict.

From the closing arguments, I conclude:

  • The prosecutors are complete idiots.
  • The defenders are no prizes. They may have snatched defeat from the jaws of certain victory.

Here are the biggest errors that I thought the defenders made. (Keep in mind that I am not a criminal defense lawyer and I have never tried a case in court.)

  • They based the self-defense case re Rosenbaum on the premise that Rosenbaum “might have” taken Rittenhouse’s gun and used it against him. That should have been their secondary, backup argument. Their primary argument should have been “It is a myth that you cannot shoot an unarmed man.”  The prosecutors made a huge deal about that, going on and on about how Rittenhouse brought a gun to a fistfight, and he was too cowardly to duke it out like a man, and even saying “you cannot shoot an unarmed man like that.” Right after the closing arguments ended, Katie Pavlich, on Fox News, pointed out that “more people are killed with hands and feet than with AR15s.” She was right, and the prosecutor was wrong, but the jury doesn’t know that, because the defenders didn’t tell them. The defenders should have had an expert witness telling the jury, “More people are killed with hands and feet than with AR15s.” 

They should have emphasized that there is a difference between “deadly force” and a “deadly weapon.” The law says you can shoot somebody to protect yourself against “deadly force”; it says nothing about a “deadly weapon.” Defense lawyer: “Can an unarmed man kill you?” Expert witness: “Hell yes. Here are the stats.” That would also have neutralized the prosecutor’s assertion that Huber’s skateboard was not a deadly weapon because parents buying their children skateboards for Christmas are not buying them deadly weapons. We can hope that the jurors are smart enough to figure out that parents buy their children baseball bats (and many other things), which can be used as deadly weapons. The defenders should also have asked the jurors if they would be OK with being hit in the head with a skateboard swung full force. (And asked the prosecutors if they would like to demonstrate to the jury how harmless a skateboard is, by volunteering to be hit in the head with one.) However, “deadly weapon” is beside the point; the issue is “deadly force,” not “deadly weapon.” The defenders should have said that over and over. Rosenbaum and Huber were both quite capable of inflicting deadly force on Rittenhouse without taking his gun away.

Also, the definition of “deadly force” includes not only death but “serious bodily injury.”  The defense needed to emphasize that. The expert witness should have told the jurors that people who get beaten with hands and fists sometimes die, but more often they get fractured skulls, permanent brain damage, loss of vision (or loss of an eye), broken jaws, crushed testicles, broken backs, lacerated livers, collapsed lungs, and occasionally they end up confined to wheelchairs as quadriplegics, being fed with a spoon for the rest of their lives. Let the jurors imagine themselves like that. That would have neutralized the prosecutor’s stupid “duke it out like a man” argument.

  • The defenders, in their closing argument, should have said the words “beyond a reasonable doubt” over and over. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the defense does not need to prove that Rittenhouse acted in self-defense; the prosecution needs to prove that Rittenhouse did not act in self-defense. And they need to prove that ‘beyond a reasonable doubt.’ Of course, if you think Rittenhouse acted in self-defense, then your verdict is Not Guilty. But if you think there is at least a reasonable possibility that Rittenhouse acted in self-defense, then your verdict is also Not Guilty. The only way to arrive at a verdict of Guilty is if you think that it’s ‘beyond a reasonable doubt,’ preposterous, outlandish, unreasonable to even think that Rittenhouse might have acted in self-defense; that no reasonable person could see anything that looked like self-defense.”
  • They could have done a better job addressing the “provocation” instruction that the prosecutors sneaked in at the last minute. “Imagine somebody who holds up a liquor store at gunpoint. A customer pulls a gun, but the robber shoots him first. Can the robber claim self-defense, because he only intended to rob, not shoot, and he was forced to defend himself against the customer? Of course not. That would be absurd. The provocation law was designed to avoid such absurd results. It certainly does not apply to Rittenhouse. And if Rittenhouse’s only “provocation” was having a gun, then why did all the many, many other people carrying guns not provoke many, many other attacks? You saw the videos. Did you see Rittenhouse provoke anybody? No, you didn’t. Did you see him provoke anybody beyond a reasonable doubt? No, you didn’t. This provocation business is a desperate, last-minute Hail Mary tactic by the prosecution. Not Guilty.”
  • When your enemy is destroying himself, don’t interfere. The prosecutor acted like a jerk, and surely alienated the jurors. But then the defenders came along and also acted like jerks. They got personal, for no good reason. Just point out that the prosecutor said the video would show Rittenhouse chasing Rosenbaum, but the video shows Rosenbaum chasing Rittenhouse. Leave it there. There is no reason to say “The prosecutor is a liar.” Let the jury figure that out for themselves.

You watched the trial; you know this is an open and shut case and that Rittenhouse should never have been charged, much less tried. But what about the jurors? Maybe they have the common sense to figure out for themselves that a skateboard can inflict deadly force, and so can an unarmed man. (“Poll the jurors, Your Honor. How many have been in bar fights?”) Maybe they will read the jury instructions and figure out the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard by themselves, without being reminded by the defenders. Maybe. But maybe not. The prosecutors’ arguments were foolish, but there are plenty of foolish people in the world who think it perfectly reasonable to say “A 17-year-old with an Assault! Rifle! automatically forfeits the right to claim self-defense. I mean, come on, it’s an Assault! Rifle! Guilty by reason of possession of an Assault! Rifle!” Are there such people on the jury?

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Data Disproves Left’s Fear Of Adhering To The Constitution On Guns

By John Lott

This year has seen the largest increase ever in the number of concealed handgun permit holdersmore than two million, for a total of 21.52 million. That is a 48 percent increase since 2016. On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court heard the case of NYSRPA v. Bruenwhich has a chance to further increase this total and make permitting rules more similar across states.

Six states now have more than 1 million permit holders: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Texas. Florida is the first state to have more than 2.5 million permits. Alabama has the highest rate of adults with permits, at 32.1 percent. Indiana is second, with 21.6 percent. By contrast, New Jersey and Hawaii both have rates of less than 0.1 percent.

The statistics don’t even account for the vast numbers of Americans who carry without permits. Twenty-one “constitutional carry” states no longer require people to have a permit to carry. Those who want to carry out of state may still get a permit, but many don’t bother.

Women and minorities (blacks and Asians) are driving the increase in permits. The growth in permits for women was 109 percent faster than for men, and 136 percent faster for blacks than for whites. As a result, women now make up 28.3 percent of permit holders, and black Americans make up 11 percent, close to their share of the population.

The lockdowns and related social unrest have something to do with this increase. As prisoners were released and police faced new restrictions and budgets cut, many people took responsibility for their own safety. But, last year, 20 states either stopped or virtually stopped issuing permits. After the process opened this year, applications were made in record numbers.

The current Supreme Court case has to do with the seven “may issue” states, which require applicants to provide “proper cause” with “good justification.” The court is considering replacing this discretionary process with objective rules. That way, someone can’t be denied a permit as long as she reaches a certain age, doesn’t have a criminal background, pays the fees, and completes any required training.

Chief Justice John Roberts and others expressed skepticism for requiring this. Roberts asked if you don’t have to justify what you are going to say “when you’re looking for a permit to speak on a street corner . . . why do you have to show in this case, convince somebody, that you’re entitled to exercise your Second Amendment right?”

After Brian Fletcher, the principal deputy solicitor general of the United States, said people had to prove a “demonstrated need” was consistent with the Second Amendment, Roberts responded: “I’m not sure that’s right. . . . regardless of what the [constitutional] right is, it would be surprising to have it depend upon a permit system.”

Only about 1 percent of adults in these may-issue states have permits. In the other 43 “Right-to-Carry” states, almost 11 percent of adults have permits.

Whenever states have eliminated “proper cause” requirements, gun-control advocates have predicted disaster, with blood-in-the-streets and irresponsible behavior by permit holders. But in state after state, concealed handgun permit holders have proved them wrong by being extremely law-abiding. Indeed, none of the right-to-carry states have even held a legislative hearing, let alone held a vote, to move back to requiring “proper cause.”

Those same fears were raised again and again during Wednesday’s oral arguments. Justice Stephen Breyer raised fears such as: “People of good moral character who start drinking a lot and who may be there for a football game or — or some kind of soccer game can get pretty angry at each other. And if they each have a concealed weapon, who knows?”

So many of these kinds of claims by gun control advocates are about things that might go wrong, but we don’t need to guess what happens. The data shows that this fear is unfounded.

For example, in Florida and Texas, permit holders are convicted of firearms-related violations at one-twelfth of the rate at which police officers are convicted. In the 19 states, where the revocation rate for permits for any reason is available, the average rate is one-tenth of 1 percent, with the most common reasons including a person moving or dying or simply forgetting to have his permit with him while carrying.

A federal court already forced Illinois to become a right-to-carry state, but Illinois responded by making it as difficult as possible to get a permit. While almost 22 percent of adults have permits in neighboring Indiana, the percentage stands at only 4 percent in Illinois. There’s a simple reason: obtaining a five-year permit costs more than $400 in Illinois and only $12.95 in Indiana.

Chicagoans have faced other obstacles. The city banned permitted concealed handguns on public transportation, created gun-free zones, and prohibited training facilities until a federal circuit court decision prohibited these measures in 2017.

This discretion also affects the type of people who get permits. In 2013, Los Angeles Weekly obtained a list of the 341 concealed-carry permit holders in Los Angeles County, California. Internet searches indicated the list was disproportionately wealthy, politically connected, white, and male, with only 7.6 percent female and 5 percent black. The numbers are very different in “shall-issue” states, which issue permits to anyone who is legally eligible.

Suppose that New York, California, and the six other may-issue states start following objective rules instead of arbitrarily denying the vast majority of applications. Presumably, they would follow Illinois’ approach and make the process very difficult. But assuming they equal Illinois’ 4 percent rate, that would still mean 2.3 million more American adults with permits.

If the Supreme Court rules against arbitrary and unfair permitting processes, even the media centers of New York City and Los Angeles might finally get to see for themselves that their fears of concealed carry are unjustified.

*****

This article was published November 10, 2021,  by Crime Prevention Research and is reproduced with permission.

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The Rittenhouse Case: Observations and Predictions

By Charles M. Strauss

Note: This article was written before closing arguments.

If facts mattered, the jury would find Rittenhouse not guilty on all counts, except for possession by a minor. However, facts don’t matter. If facts mattered, he would not have been charged in the first place. So, there is always the possibility that the jurors are a bunch of nitwits who believe in their hearts that possessing an AR15 is prima facie proof of homicidal intent, or that going into a danger zone with a gun is prima facie proof of homicidal intent. (Except for Grosskreutz, of course. Rittenhouse’s lawyer never asked him why he brought a gun into the situation. Why not?)

There is a fairly high likelihood that the jury will find him not guilty on all counts (except for possession by a minor), for two reasons:

  • The verdict needs to be unanimous, and although I believe there are many stupid people in the world, and some on the jury, I think it unlikely that all 12 would be that dumb. So worst case, hung jury, which is the same as acquittal except the prosecutor could refile the charges. (Unless the judge grants the motion for dismissal at that point.)
  • The prosecutor needs to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that Rittenhouse was not acting in self defense. If a juror says “I think Rittenhouse may not have been acting in self-defense, but I admit it’s at least plausible that he was acting in self-defense,” then that is supposed to be a not guilty verdict. For a verdict of guilty, the jurors would have to believe “No reasonable person could possibly think this was self-defense. Self-defense? That’s crazy talk. That’s like claiming space aliens pulled the trigger.”
  • However, at the last minute, the prosecutor proposed reduced charges, so jurors could feel sorry for the prosecutor, and want to give him a consolation prize. Or they could be afraid of rioters/retribution, and want to throw the wolves a bone to take heat off themselves. Or they could think “I think he’s not guilty, but surely the DA would not have brought this case if there was nothing there, right? My government would never do such a thing.  He must be guilty of something.” It’s easy for them to say “I don’t think he’s guilty, but let’s give him ‘only’ ten years in prison instead of life in prison. He’ll only be 28 when he gets out, so no big deal.”

    About the Prosecutor

    It’s hard to believe he is that incompetent. Any lawyer knows Thou Shalt Not bring up the subject of invoking the right to remain silent. You can get suspended for that. And on and on. This guy is stunningly horrible. But, is he really that bad, or is he throwing the case on purpose? It’ll be interesting to see if he brings up verboten material in his closing argument, causing the defense lawyer to object (something rarely done) or more likely, causing the judge to interrupt him.

    About the Defense Lawyer

    Not bad, but not great. Did a good job getting the witnesses to say the right things. (Especially Grosskreutz.) Did a great job prepping Rittenhouse. But there are a couple of things I think he could have done better.

  • The self-defense case re: Rosenbaum is based on whether a reasonable person could believe that Rosenbaum was (a) grabbing for the gun and (b) would have used it to shoot Rittenhouse if he had gotten it — versus he was not grabbing for the gun, or he was grabbing for the gun just to disarm Rittenhouse and he would not have used the gun himself. In other words, was the unarmed Rosenbaum defending himself against the armed Rittenhouse? (Will the prosecutor lay it out like that in his closing argument?) That’s a good argument, because it is not clear “beyond a reasonable doubt” that Rosenbaum was not grabbing the gun or would not have used it. Nevertheless, the defense should have had a backup plan – having an expert witness dispel the myth that you can’t shoot an unarmed man because an unarmed man does not present “deadly force.” The expert should have educated the jury that 600-700 people a year are killed by people who are unarmed vs. maybe half that many by people with AR15s. Because the defense did not bring it up, the prosecutor is likely to raise it in his closing argument.
  • The prosecutor intends to make a big deal about Rittenhouse using FMJ (full metal jacket) ammunition, which is supposed to be evidence that Rittenhouse recklessly disregarded the risk of bullets over penetrating and hitting a bystander. Because the charge of reckless endangerment was added at the last minute, that gives the prosecutor an opening. The defense lawyer should have gone after that in the argument for jury instructions. “Your honor, there are only two kinds of ammunition: hollow point and non-hollow point. If a defendant uses hollow point ammunition, the prosecutor can use that as evidence that the defendant wanted to inflict maximum pain and death. If a defendant uses non-hollow point ammunition, the prosecutor can claim that the defendant recklessly disregarded the risk of overpenetration. There was no evidence presented at trial to show that FMJ ammunition fired from an AR15 penetrates more (or significantly more) than hollow point ammunition, so the prosecutor should not be able to make that argument.” Alternatively, the defense lawyer should have gotten an expert to talk about the likelihood of overpenetration of that brand of ammunition from that barrel length, in comparison with other types of ammunition. At the very least, the defense lawyer better be prepared in closing argument to tell the jury that there was no such testimony, but that in any case, they could interpret the use of FMJ as evidence that Rittenhouse did not want to use “more deadly” hollow point ammunition. Remember how Harold Fish got screwed when the prosecutor raised the subject of hollow point ammunition for the first time in his closing argument, and how the judge let it go, and Fish’s lawyer let it go? I hope the prosecutor doesn’t get away with it this time.
  • There was a better answer to “Why did you have a gun?” Answer: “I thought it would be a deterrent. I assumed rioters and arsonists were reasonable people, who would see people with guns and decide to go somewhere else and leave that business alone. I never thought I would actually have to shoot somebody.” “Then why did you load the gun?” “Just in case I ran across some psychotic violent criminals, off their meds, who would be crazy enough to try to kill me while I was carrying a gun.” (“OBJECTION!” “Sustained. The jury will disregard the statement about psychotic violent criminals off their meds.”)
  • About the Judge

    He knows that this is a bulls__t case, which never should have been brought. He has left open the defense motion to dismiss. I would not be too surprised if, after closing arguments, the judge says “I have made a decision regarding the motion to dismiss. The prosecutor’s conduct has been so egregious that I grant the motion to dismiss, with prejudice. Rittenhouse is a free man, and I will be recommending that the Wisconsin Bar investigate the prosecutor’s unethical misconduct.” I would especially expect that if the prosecutor steps over the line again during his closing argument.

    The judge really would prefer to pass the buck to the jury, and let them come back with a not guilty verdict. So, if he reads the jury as being inclined to not guilty, he may let the jury decide the case, knowing that if they do find Rittenhouse guilty, he has that motion to dismiss in his back pocket, and he knows he can issue a “judgment notwithstanding the verdict” – effectively overruling the jury. That is almost never used, but I’m thinking this guy is 75 years old. He is ready to retire, and he is pissed off at what he sees as a gross miscarriage of justice. “Let the heathen rage” – his pension is secure. He can move to Florida, and he can supplement that fat pension with consulting expert fees on Fox News and elsewhere.

    Because of the recently introduced lesser charges, I revise my prediction: the jury finds Rittenhouse guilty on a lesser charge. In my opinion, that would be a terrible injustice; this is as clear a case of self-defense as ever there was. But, sometimes injustice prevails. Sometimes the bad guys win.

    Now let’s just wait and see how wrong I was.

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    Will the Right to Bear Arms Become a “Constitutional Orphan”?

    By Joyce Lee Malcolm

    After nearly a decade rejecting Second Amendment cases, the Supreme Court has just agreed to hear New York Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York. It is high time and not a moment too soon. Since McDonald v. City of Chicago in 2010 when the Court incorporated “the right of individuals to keep and bear those arms in common use for self-defense and other lawful purposes” a batch of state and local statutes, with the approval of the lower courts, have made a nonsense of the Court’s ruling, reducing, in Justice Thomas’s words, the individual right to be armed to “a constitutional orphan.”

    A few examples of this stubborn defiance of the Supreme Court’s Second Amendment opinions will suffice. Judge Easterbrook of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals had no problem affirming the Chicago gun ban even after the Court overturned Washington D.C.’s identical ban in District of Columbia v. Heller. The Supreme Court then overturned the Chicago ban in McDonald v. City of Chicago and incorporated the Second Amendment throughout the country. Undeterred, five years later Easterbrook upheld a Highland Park, Illinois ban on weapons the city defined as “assault weapons.” These included any semi-automatic rifle taking a large capacity magazine and sporting certain cosmetic features. Although the banned firearms are among the most popular hunting rifles in the country used safely by millions of Americans, Highland Park branded them “dangerous and unusual.” Defying the Supreme Court ruling that guns in common use are constitutional, Easterbrook insisted it is “better to ask whether the regulation bans weapons that were in common use at the time of ratification [1791] and have “some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well-regulated militia,” both points explicitly and emphatically rejected by the Supreme Court. For good measure Easterbrook added that other questions about Second Amendment protection should be clarified by “the political process and scholarly debate.” Judge Manion, the lone dissenter in the 2/1 decision, found both the Highland Park ordinance and the Seventh Circuit’s opinion “directly at odds with the central holdings of Heller and McDonald.

    In a similar fashion the Ninth Circuit upheld two blatantly unconstitutional California statutes. Peruta v. California focused on the right of law-abiding citizens to bear arms in public. California law forbids carrying a gun openly in public while requiring a showing of “good cause” among other criteria for carrying a gun concealed.  It was left to the local sheriff to decide what constituted “good cause.” Since the sheriff in San Diego, petitioner’s county specified that “concern for one’s personal safety” did not “alone” satisfy this requirement, citizens were, for all practical purposes, barred from carrying a firearm at all. A Ninth Circuit panel agreed this was unconstitutional, but when the case was heard en banc a majority of the judges reversed, focusing only on whether the Second Amendment protected a right to carry a concealed firearm, ignoring the fact open carry was already forbidden. With both effectively barred Californians had no right to bear a firearm at all.

    In Pena v. Lindley, The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the constitutionality of California’s Unsafe Handgun Act which included the stipulation that all new handguns must stamp “microscopically the handgun’s make, model, and serial number onto each fired shell case,” although “no handguns were available in the United States that met the miscrostamping requirements.” Nevertheless, the judges added that “simply because no gun manufacturer is `even considering trying’ to implement the technology, it does not follow that microstamping is technologically infeasible.” Californians are free to buy handguns that do not exist.

    Now for the New York Case, New York State Rifle & Pistol Assoc. v. City of New York that the Supreme Court has agreed to hear. This involves a New York City licensing regulation (Rule 5-23) for guns kept on the premises, put in place in the years before Heller recognized the fundamental right to keep and bear arms. It prohibits handguns kept in the home from being taken outside except to a shooting range within the city while unloaded and locked in a container separate from the ammunition. This regulation remains despite the Supreme Court affirming the right of individuals to bear a gun for self-defense.

    Justice Thomas found it “extremely improbable that the Framers understood the Second Amendment to protect little more than carrying a gun from the bedroom to the kitchen.” A gun outside the home locked in a compartment separate from the ammunition is clearly useless for self-defense. As Heller explained, “[a] statute which, under the pretense of regulating, amounts to a destruction of the right, or which requires arms to be so borne as to render them wholly useless for the purpose of defense [is] clearly unconstitutional.” Plaintiffs also claimed the regulation violated their right to travel and interfered with interstate commerce, two arguments that failed to persuade.

    In his decision, District Judge Robert Sweet sidestepped the right to carry a weapon in public for self-defense. On appeal the Second Circuit Court judges, claiming to employ heightened scrutiny, unanimously upheld the District Court ruling insisting the Supreme Court “puts the focus where it belongs: on the core right of self-defense in the home.” That claim is especially ironic since New York City’s draconian requirements for obtaining a gun for self-defense in the home have resulted in the approval of only 40,000 handgun licenses for the city’s population of 8,550,405 residents.

    The Second Circuit judges claimed to have used heightened scrutiny although relying on a single affidavit from the former commander of the state licensing division while arguing plaintiffs had failed to describe “a substantial burden on those rights.” “Denying a fundamental individual right by applying a version of heightened scrutiny unrecognizable in any other constitutional context,” petitioners point out, poses a threat to all constitutional rights. Now the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case. Let us hope that the justices will rescue the right to keep and bear arms from those who would defy the Court and the Second Amendment’s Framers.

    Joyce Lee Malcolm is Patrick Henry Professor of Constitutional Law and the Second Amendment at Antonin Scalia Law School. Her work was cited several times in the landmark case of District of Columbia v. Heller (2008).

    *****

    This article was published on November 7, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from Law & Liberty, a project of Liberty Fund.

    THE “WOKE” ARE ASLEEP thumbnail

    THE “WOKE” ARE ASLEEP

    By Alan Korwin

    Inventing new ideas to describe the impossible — and make it sound rational and normal — are Marxist and communist control tools. These are mechanisms designed to keep people cooperative and in line. Looking around you, and especially watching or reading the so-called “news,” you can see it at work. George Orwell called it newthink. Stalin called the people subject to this form of mind control useful idiots. Whatever you think of the people and the process, it’s running rampant in America and threatens your right to keep and bear arms.

    Newthink

    When Joe Biden made bizarre pronouncements about guns in a nationally televised address and had the utter gall to say none of it affects the Second Amendment.

    For example: “My job, the job of any President, is to protect the American people.”

    No, Biden’s job is, “to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution.”

    For example: “Modifications to firearms that make them more lethal should be subject to the National Firearms Act.”

    No. That’s just patently false. Guns are supposed to be lethal. The 1934 NFA has nothing to do with it.

    Government lacks any semblance of delegated power to do the things he declared, and the statements he made lacked even shadows of truthiness. What he called the “assault-weapons ban” that began during the Clinton years essentially banned nothing. Even the revered New York Times, that widely recognized harbinger of lies and deception about guns and gun owners, admitted afterward Clinton’s 10-year program had no effect on crime. The AR-15, the supposed target of that law, has so little involvement in crime it is simply stunning the Democrats and the left would focus attention there. It’s a reflection of how little woke folk understand about guns, how criminals operate and what the threats to our safety really are.

    The one-shot-at-a-time AR-15, America’s most popular long gun, is statistically disconnected from the 7,000 annual murders in urban neighborhoods, which politicians and mass media ignore while talking about “communities of color.”

    Revolving Door Myths

    Virtually everything the woke left agonizes about guns is a myth, used to take focus away from the real problems. The “bad parts of town,” mired in enforced federal-program poverty, dysfunctional families, fatherless homes, drug-addicted streets, schools that don’t teach — these don’t make it to reformers’ consciousness. And suicides, responsible for a significant portion of the “gun problem” is a medical issue, which doctors won’t tackle, because of the stigma it casts on the accused.

    One can barely recall all the myths gun-banning woke activists have invented and thrown at you in efforts to coalesce power into their own heavily armed hands. Remember Saturday Night Specials? That went away when everyone realized it was basically a racist stereotype. Along with it went Junk Guns, the idea that firearms only the poor could afford was the root of all evil. It too lost its value when even the corrupt media realized they needed a new flag to wave.

    One of my favorites was Cooling-Off Periods, which morphed into Waiting Periods (“just commonsense,” now a single word). This canard was hopelessly bizarre illogic. One enraged spouse would run out to a gun store in a frenzy, looking to buy the gun needed to murder the other spouse. But having to wait three days (or five, or 10 — it doesn’t matter), he would cool off and the homicidal rage would pass. Then you should believe the angst would never occur again. Ozzie and Harriet would get on famously for the rest of their lives, and the gun, now home, would never get used. No more waiting period, and life is grand. Could it be any more irrational? The woke have abandoned that like screen doors on submarines.

    Lately, it’s Ghost Guns. The Invisible Gun’s hysteria died when everyone found out GLOCKs and similar polymer-framed sidearms are superb, not invisible at all, and preferred by law-enforcement agencies everywhere. Printed Guns stopped being a threat when the truth emerged — a single-shot .22 from a $3,000 printer and blueprints couldn’t compete with a $200 used .22. Ghost guns are blocks of aluminum that require know-how, a tool shop. Do criminals really use them?

    Maybe the worst part is how bad the so-called “news” has become. The Columbia Journalism Review, once a paragon of unbiased virtue, now has a gun-news manifesto it expects reporters to sign and obey. A one-sided mash-up of gun-control silliness, it fails to recognize the value and social utility of firearms, and they don’t know it. The woke aren’t just asleep, they’re comatose.

    Award-winning author Alan Korwin has written 14 books, 10 of them on gun law, and has advocated for gun rights for nearly three decades. See his work or reach him at GunLaws.com.

    *****

    This article was published in the November-December edition of American Handgunner and is reprinted with permission from the author.

    Supreme Court to Consider Major Gun Rights Case This Week thumbnail

    Supreme Court to Consider Major Gun Rights Case This Week

    By Casey Harper

    The U.S. Supreme court will hear oral arguments in a major gun rights case this week that could have significant implications for Second Amendment rights nationwide.

    The high court will hear arguments Wednesday in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, a case involving New York state’s strict laws around carrying firearms. Several states have joined the case in defense of Second Amendment rights.

    In the case in question, Robert Nash and Brandon Koch applied to receive concealed carry licenses, but their request was denied.

    Under the New York law, state officials say concealed carry permits may only be granted when the applicants establish “proper cause” beyond a “nonspeculative need for self-defense.” According to officials, the men did not meet that threshold.

    “Absent such a need, applicants may receive a ‘premises’ license that allows them to keep a firearm in their home or place of business, or a ‘restricted’ license that allows them to carry in public for any other purposes for which they have shown a non-speculative need – such as hunting, target shooting, or employment,” the states’ defense wrote. “The individual petitioners here received restricted licenses.”

    Nash pointed to several robberies near his home in an appeal to the denial. A New York affiliate of the National Rifle Association has partnered with the two gun owners to file their legal challenge, which is now before the Supreme Court.

    They argue New York residents should be allowed to carry a weapon without being forced to meet the state’s high and arbitrary standard.

    “A law that flatly prohibits ordinary law-abiding citizens from carrying a handgun for self-defense outside the home cannot be reconciled with the Court’s affirmation of the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation,” the challengers said in their filing. “The Second Amendment does not exist to protect only the rights of the happy few who distinguish themselves from the body of ‘the people’ through some ‘proper cause.’ To the contrary, the Second Amendment exists to protect the rights of all the people.”

    District of Columbia v. Heller, a landmark gun rights case in 2008 that discussed “the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation,” was a major win for Second Amendment advocates. The court’s affirmation of that right to self-defense paved the way for citizens to push for having guns in the home even when local governments forbid it.

    The Heller case addressed “prohibition on the possession of usable handguns in the home” and decided that such a prohibition was not constitutional.

    Now, the court will consider how that right to carry a weapon for self-defense continues outside the home.

    “New York prohibits its ordinary law-abiding citizens from carrying a handgun outside the home without a license, and it denies licenses to every citizen who fails to convince the state that he or she has ‘proper cause’ to carry a firearm,” the challengers wrote in a court filing.

    The Heller case could become the crux of the legal challenge.

    “It is enough to note, as we have observed, that the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon,” the late Associate Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in the Heller opinion. “Handguns are the most popular weapon chosen by Americans for self-defense in the home, and a complete prohibition of their use is invalid.”

    Several states have weighed in on the case, filing a joint brief in defense of Second Amendment rights. Those states include Arizona, Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.

    “Citizens that receive permits are significantly more law-abiding than the public at large, and studies link objective-issue regimes with decreased murder rates and no rise in other violent crimes,” the brief reads. “Public safety is also increased at the individual level when citizens carry for self-defense and respond to a criminal attack with a firearm; these defensive gun uses leave the intended victim unharmed more frequently than any other option and almost never require firing a shot.”

    *****

    This article was published on November 1, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from The Center Square.

    Homicide is Soaring in the Tucson, AZ Metro Area thumbnail

    Homicide is Soaring in the Tucson, AZ Metro Area

    By Samual Stebbins

    Homicides are rising at a record pace in the United States. According to a recent FBI report, there were a total of 21,570 murders committed in 2020, the most of any year in the last two and a half decades and up nearly 30% from 2019 — the largest annual increase on record.

    The spike in homicides came during a tumultuous year. The COVID-19 pandemic shut down schools and left millions of Americans out of work. Footage of the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer rattled confidence in American law enforcement and sparked nationwide protests. Firearms sales soared, and tens of millions of new guns proliferated across communities nationwide. Here is a look at the states where gun sales are surging.

    Some experts speculate that each of these factors likely played a role in rising homicide rates nationwide. While it may be years before the precise causal factors are identified, many U.S. cities are bearing the brunt of the rash of deadly violence. In metropolitan areas across the country, the increase in homicides last year eclipsed the national surge — in some cases, many times over.

    Murders rose at a rate of 53.6% in Tucson, Arizona, last year. A total of 86 homicides were reported in the metro area in 2020, up from 56 the previous year.

    The trend of rising homicide rates will likely continue for the foreseeable future in Tucson. Preliminary reports show that 2021 may well prove to be a deadlier year in the city than 2020 was. In response, Tucson police are stepping up patrols in high-crime areas and reassigning robbery and assault officers to homicide cases. The vast majority of murders in the city — over 80% — have been solved.

    *****

    The article was published on November 2, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from The Center Square.

    11 More Reasons Biden Administration Is Wrong About Onerous Gun Restrictions thumbnail

    11 More Reasons Biden Administration Is Wrong About Onerous Gun Restrictions

    By Amy Swearer

    The Biden administration last month filed a brief encouraging the Supreme Court to uphold New York City’s de facto ban preventing ordinary citizens from carrying firearms in public.

    The administration argued that an onerous “good cause” requirement—giving the city’s police department unmitigated discretion over citizens’ exercise of a fundamental right—is a perfectly reasonable regulation.

    This court brief is just one of several high-profile actions taken this year by the Biden administration that underscore its lack of commitment to taking the Second Amendment seriously.

    New York City’s law, one of a myriad of serious burdens placed on New Yorkers’ right to keep and bear arms, prevents the vast majority of residents from being able to meaningfully protect themselves in public when the government fails to do so. And the government often fails to do so.

    In fact, almost every major study on the issue has found that Americans use their firearms in self-defense between 500,000 and 3 million times annually, according to a 2013 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    For this reason, The Daily Signal publishes an article monthly underscoring some of the previous month’s many news stories on defensive gun use that you may have missed—or that might not have made it to the national spotlight in the first place.

    The examples below represent only a small portion of the news stories on defensive gun use that we found in August. You may explore more by using The Heritage Foundation’s interactive Defensive Gun Use Database. (The Daily Signal is the multimedia news organization of The Heritage Foundation.)

    • Sept. 4, Houston, Texas: An erratic driver began chasing another vehicle, eventually pulling up alongside and pointing a gun at the occupants, police said. The driver of the second vehicle drew his own gun and fired in self-defense, seriously wounding the erratic driver and a female passenger. The wounded couple drove off, throwing two firearms out of the window. Police said they didn’t anticipate charging the second driver, who immediately called 911 and cooperated with law enforcement.
    •  Sept. 5, Mount Healthy, Ohio: A man with a record of domestic violence broke into his ex-girlfriend’s residence through a window and assaulted her. Another resident fatally shot the assailant, police said.
    • Sept. 7, Dickson, Tennessee: A man used his handgun to defend himself and his grandchildren from an assailant during a bizarre encounter outside their home. Police said the family had just returned from a trip to a local doughnut shop when another car pulled into their driveway. The driver, whom the resident said he did not know, approached the family while shouting in Spanish, prompting the resident to retrieve a handgun from the car and order the stranger to leave. He fired a warning shot into the ground when the man continued advancing, police said. The stranger then chased the resident around the car, his grandchildren still inside, and grabbed at him. He shot the attacker once in the stomach, killing him, police said.
    • Sept. 10, Atlanta, Georgia: A man leaving a grocery store saw two young men stealing items from his car and confronted them, police said. He drew his firearm on the thieves, fatally shooting one as the second one returned fire and fled. Police later found a 17-year-old, who was wounded in the wrist, and charged him with several felonies, including two gun-related offenses.
    • Sept. 15, Albuquerque, New Mexico: An armed man entered a Subway restaurant and attempted to rob an employee, police said. A second employee—armed with his own gun—appeared from a back room and fatally shot the robber. The New Mexico Business Coalition told reporters that it is concerned about police response times to emergency calls and isn’t surprised that more employees are arming themselves.
    • Sept. 16, Kalispell, Montana: When the manager of a 24-hour fitness center revoked a patron’s membership after discovering that he had been sleeping at the gym without permission, police said, the patron shot the manager to death in the parking lot. An assistant manager alerted a customer, who retrieved a handgun from his car. After the shooter fired several rounds at the customer, wounding him, the customer returned fire and wounded the shooter, disabling him until police could arrive.
    • Sept. 18, La Porte, Texas: An abusive family member—out on bond for multiple assault charges—appeared at the new home of a woman and her teenage relative and assaulted the woman with a sack filled with canned goods, police said. The teenager grabbed a handgun and fatally shot him. The local district attorney’s office called the teenager a “brave kid” and said it considers the shooting to be the lawful defense of another.
    • Sept. 20, Butler, Pennsylvania: A man carrying a firearm was leaving a store when he witnessed someone stab another person several times, police said. The man drew his firearm and held the assailant at gunpoint until police arrived.
    • Sept. 21, Pocola, Oklahoma: Shortly after his mother left his apartment to return to her own apartment next door, police said, a man heard gunshots and screaming. He retrieved a firearm before checking on his mother, whom he discovered shot on the floor just inside her door. He fatally shot his mother’s estranged husband, the subject of an active protection order, when he saw him reaching for what appeared to be a weapon.
    • Sept. 28, Chaves County, New Mexico:  Three armed ranchers ended a daylong manhunt for a homicide suspect by confronting the man as he walked through their rural property, investigators said. The ranchers convinced the fugitive to put his rifle down and then held him at gunpoint until deputies arrived.
    • Sept. 29, Cave Junction, Oregon: Police said a man forced his way inside a home, assaulted a female resident, and stole property before attempting to flee in a pickup truck. He drove through a yard, hit a parked car, ran over a child’s play structure, and crashed into another residence.  An armed neighbor shot out the assailant’s tires, pulled him from the truck, and held him at gunpoint until police arrived.

    Whether at home or in public, Americans’ meaningful ability to invoke their natural right of self-defense is one of the most important aspects to our free republic.

    Policies that arbitrarily strip this ability from all but a select few aren’t “reasonable regulations,” but gross violations of both an enumerated constitutional right and natural law.

    At the same time, such policies leave ordinary citizens largely defenseless in the face of attacks on life, liberty, and property, failing to further the public safety interest the government so often invokes to justify these policies.

    The public is not rendered “safer” when citizens are disarmed, but rendered only more vulnerable to (and powerless against) those who would do them harm.

    *****

    This article was published on October 19, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from The Daily Signal.

    Gun Control Works! Muslim Convert Murders Five People with a Bow and Arrow thumbnail

    Gun Control Works! Muslim Convert Murders Five People with a Bow and Arrow

    By Robert Spencer

    My latest in PJ Media:

    Advocates of gun control should take note of recent developments in Norway, but won’t: On Wednesday evening, a convert to Islam in the city of Kongsberg, southwest of Oslo, began shooting at random people with a bow and arrow. Police confronted him, but police in Norway are unarmed, so they had to retreat when he began firing arrows at them. He was only apprehended 35 minutes later, after he had murdered five people. The lessons for foes of the Second Amendment should be obvious, and those aren’t the only lessons of this grisly incident.

    The attacker was a Danish citizen and convert to Islam named Espen Andersen Bråthen. And he hadn’t embraced that religion of peace and tolerance that non-Muslim politicians in the West keep telling us about. According to the UK’s Sun, “Police said the Danish man suspected of the attack is a Muslim convert who was previously flagged as having been radicalized.” Chief of Police Ole Bredrup Sæverud stated that “there has previously been worrying information about this man linked to his radicalisation which the police have followed up… but in 2021, we have not received any warnings about him.”

    So the police knew that Espen Andersen Bråthen could be dangerous, but they hadn’t received any reports about him lately, and so he was free and unsupervised to the extent that he was able to murder five people. It would be unrealistic to expect Norwegian police to be shadowing every dangerous person who may at some point commit a crime, but Bråthen does appear to be one who warranted a bit more attention than he received. According to the Washington Post, “Norwegian media reported that a court had granted a restraining order last year for the alleged attacker to stay away from two of his family members for six months after he threatened to kill one of them.”

    Despite all this, the Sun claimed that Bråthen’s motive was “unknown,” and the Post noted that “the police attorney said psychiatric experts would assess him on Thursday.”

    Maybe he is insane, but there is a long history of authorities in the West declaring that people who are obviously jihadis are simply mentally ill. In the real world, there is extremely strong evidence of what Bråthen’s motive was. He is a convert to a religion that reveres as holy a book that tells believers to “kill them,” that is, unbelievers, “wherever you find them” (Qur’an 2:191; 4:89; cf. 9:5). This applies to family members as well, for the same book says: “O you who believe, do not choose your fathers or your brothers for friends if they take pleasure in disbelief rather than faith. Whoever among you takes them for friends, such people are wrongdoers” (Qur’an 9:23). It depicts the patriarch Abraham as telling his unbelieving father that “there has arisen between us and you hostility and hatred forever, until you believe in Allah alone.” (Qur’an 60:4)

    There is more. Read the rest here.

    RELATED ARTICLES:

    Biden’s handlers bring in over 2,000 migrants from countries that export jihad terrorism

    Vatican top dogs tried to dissuade Islamocritical Anglican from converting to Catholicism

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    Afghanistan: Sunni Muslims murder 32 Shi’ites in jihad suicide bombing at Kandahar mosque

    UK: Muslim linked to ‘Islamist extremists’ stabs MP to death

    EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

    Concealed Carry Permit Holders Surge Across The United States: 2021 thumbnail

    Concealed Carry Permit Holders Surge Across The United States: 2021

    By John R. Lott and Rujun Wang

    During the Coronavirus pandemic, the number of concealed handgun permits has soared to over 21.52 million – a 48% increase since 2016. It’s also a 10.5% increase over the number of permits we counted a year ago in 2020. Unlike gun ownership surveys that may be affected by people’s unwillingness to answer personal questions, concealed handgun permit data is the only really “hard data” that we have. This increase occurred despite 21 Constitutional Carry states that no longer provide data on all those legally carrying a concealed handgun because people in those states no longer need a permit to carry.

    These numbers are particularly topical given that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the concealed carry case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association V. Corlett in November. That case will determine whether those requesting permits need to provide a “proper cause,” which means a good reason for obtaining a permit.

    John R. Lott, Jr. and Rujun Wang, “Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States: 2021,” Social Science Research Network, October 6, 2021.

    *****

    This article was published on October 6, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from the Crime Prevention Research Center.

    FBI REPORT: Twice as Many Killed with Knives than Rifles & Shotguns Combined

    What next? Fist control? Knife control? No. It’s all about Democrat tyrants disarming the American people.

    FBI: More People Killed with Fists, Feet, Than Rifles

    By AWR Hawkins,, Breitbart News, 27 Sep 2021:

    The FBI released its Uniform Crime Report (UCR) Monday showing that more people were killed in 2020 with fists and feet than were killed with rifles of all kinds.

    The UCR shows that 454 people were killed with rifles in 2020 while 657 were killed with “personnel weapons,” which are defined as “hands, fists, feet, etc.”

    The UCR figures show a similar situation was occurred in 2019, when 375 people were killed with rifles but 639 were killed with “hands, fists, feet, etc.”

    In 2018 the number of people killed with “hands, fists, feet, etc.,” was more than twice the number killed with rifles of all kinds.

    Breitbart News notes that the UCR also shows more than 3.5 times more people were stabbed to death in 2020 than were killed with rifles. The UCR shows that 454 people were shot and killed with rifles in 2020 while 1,732 were stabbed or hacked to death with “knives or cutting instruments.”

    EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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    Subscribe to Geller Report newsletter here — it’s free and it’s critical NOW when informed decision making and opinion is essential to America’s survival. Share our posts on your social channels and with your email contacts. Fight the great fight.

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    Smith & Wesson Abandons Massachusetts for Freedom-Loving Tennessee

    An example every freedom loving American should follow.

    Smith & Wesson Gun Maker Abandons Massachusetts for Freedom-Loving Tennessee

    Iconic U.S. firearms maker Smith & Wesson has just ditched Massachusetts for freedom-loving Tennessee.

    By Warner Todd Huston, October 1, 2021:

    Iconic U.S. firearms maker Smith & Wesson has been headquartered in Massachusetts for 168 years, but that is no more as the company just ditched the deep blue state for freedom-loving Tennessee.

    I a news release published on Thursday, the gun company announced that it has now finalized plans to move its manufacturing and corporate headquarters to Tennessee because of the state’s “unwavering support of the Second Amendment.”

    S&W President and CEO Mark Smith said the decision was “an extremely difficult and emotional” one, but since Massachusetts passed a new law that would prevent it from manufacturing most of its products, the company was left with little choice.

    “For the continued health and strength of our iconic company, we feel that we have been left with no other alternative,” Smith said, adding that even if the particular legislation were to be defeated, the continuing anti-gun atmosphere in the state made the future dicey at best.

    “These bills would prevent Smith & Wesson from manufacturing firearms that are legal in almost every state in America and that are safely used by tens of millions of law-abiding citizens every day exercising their Constitutional 2nd Amendment rights, protecting themselves and their families, and enjoying the shooting sports,” the CEO explained.

    Smith called the state’s attack on the Second Amendment “arbitrary and damaging.” But he praised Tennessee for its welcoming attitude.

    “The strong support we have received from the State of Tennessee and the entire leadership of Blount County throughout this process, combined with the quality of life, outdoor lifestyle, and low cost of living in the Greater Knoxville area has left no doubt that Tennessee is the ideal location for Smith & Wesson’s new headquarters,” Smith said.

    “We would like to specifically thank [Republican Gov. Bill] Lee for his decisive contributions and the entire state legislature for their unwavering support of the 2nd Amendment and for creating a welcoming, business friendly environment,” Smith added.

    S&W is not the only Massachusetts-based gun company to make Tennessee its new home. Recently Troy Industries also ditched Mass. for a new home in Clarksville, Tennessee.

    EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

    Quick note: Tech giants are shutting us down. You know this. Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Adsense, Pinterest permanently banned us. Facebook, Google search et al have shadow-banned, suspended and deleted us from your news feeds. They are disappearing us. But we are here. We will not waver. We will not tire. We will not falter, and we will not fail. Freedom will prevail.

    Subscribe to Geller Report newsletter here — it’s free and it’s critical NOW when informed decision making and opinion is essential to America’s survival. Share our posts on your social channels and with your email contacts. Fight the great fight.

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    Remember, YOU make the work possible. If you can, please contribute to Geller Report.

    Legendary Gun Maker Moves Out of Progressive Massachusetts

    Smith & Wesson, a legendary name in American firearms manufacturing has announced it is leaving Springfield Massachusetts for the friendlier business and political climate of East Tennessee.

    Smith and Wesson President and CEO Mark Smith suggested the company had “been left with no alternative” other than to leave because of legislation that passed in the Progressive state that would negatively impact about 60% of their revenues.

    With operations in Springfield Massachusetts since 1852, Progressive policies will cost the state over 750 jobs and boost employment in Maryville in Blount County Tennessee. Some residual jobs will remain in Massachusetts.

    The move by S&W mirrors similar relocations by other firearms companies and accessory firms that have moved to a more inclusive and friendly environment. According to the NSSF, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, Remington moved facilities from New York to Alabama, Kimber left New York for Alabama, American Tactical left New York for South Carolina, Weatherby has left California for Wyoming, Magpul left Colorado to Wyoming, Colt moved facilities from Oregon to Texas, and Les Baer has moved from Illinois to Iowa.

    Smith and Wesson is famous in the firearms industry and even with the general public. The Model 29 revolver became a must-own item for many after being featured by Clint Eastwood in the “Dirty Harry” series of movies.

    Smith and Wesson was closely involved in the development of both the .357 Magnum, used for years by police forces around the world, and the iconic .44 Magnum, also featured in the Eastwood movies. S&W pistols were also famous on the American frontier, especially their break open revolver that could be loaded quickly on horseback.

    Governor Bill Lee of Tennessee suggested the state’s pro-business reputation, available workforce, and “commitment to the Second Amendment” were factors that sealed the deal. S&W plans to invest more than $125 million in new facilities in Tennessee.

    Blount County in 2019 became a “Second Amendment Sanctuary Community”, wherein law enforcement and statute uphold the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

    Gun manufacturers in the past few years have seen a boom in sales as citizens rush to protect themselves against Progressive Democrat policies that have led to rising crime and worsening race relations. Policies that “re-imagine” law enforcement has caused budget cuts, mass resignations of police officers, weak local prosecution, government-sanctioned shoplifting, and a hostile work environment for law enforcement generally, leaving citizens in Democrat strongholds at the mercy of criminal elements.

    From January to June 2021, the latest figures available from the National Shooting Sports Foundation, there have been over 3.2 million new first-time firearms owners. While all segments are growing, firearms ownership by females is growing the fastest.

    Last year, gun sales nationally were up 60%, with again females and black Americans leading sales. There were over 21 million background checks for the sale of a gun in 2020 and over 12.4 million through the first eight months of 2021.

    Democrat policies simultaneously drive up the demand for guns, while restricting the manufacturing of both guns and ammunition. In the past year or so, the cost of ammunition has tripled and availability has been limited.

    The genius of the American system is federalism. Different states have different policies on a variety of matters.

    Both companies and individuals still are free to choose, and they are doing so in increasing numbers.

    The Moral Problem With Most Gun Free Zones

    By taking away our means of self-defense and refusing to provide a suitable substitute, gun-free zones violate our right to life.


    Let’s start with a thought experiment. Suppose I push you into deep water as part of a swimming lesson. Because you do not know how to swim, you start desperately trying to keep yourself afloat, but to no avail. Now suppose further that I do nothing to rescue you, and as a result, you drown. My actions in this scenario are tantamount to murder. I intentionally placed you in a situation of great vulnerability and then refused to provide for you. Your rights were egregiously violated by my refusal to do anything.

    The moral principle behind this thought experiment is the following: if I knowingly cause you to exist in a state of great need or vulnerability, then I am responsible for providing for you. If I do not, then I am negligent. If my negligence leads to your death, then I am guilty of murder.

    This principle is enshrined in the legal system as part of the state-created danger doctrine. If the government does something that puts someone into a position of danger, it bears a special responsibility to provide for that individual’s safety. If it fails to do this, then it may be held liable for any harms that result.

    This principle has direct relevance for so-called “gun-free zones.” These are locations in which the government has declared, using the threat of punishment to force compliance, that carrying firearms is prohibited. In coercively requiring us to disarm, the government intentionally handicaps our ability to effectively and reasonably protect ourselves.

    It has, in other words, put us in a position of increased vulnerability with respect to our self-protection. If it does nothing to make up for the deficit in protection that it has created, then the government has violated our right to self-protection. If someone is harmed or killed as a result, then the government is guilty of a violation of said person’s right to life.

    There is a large body of evidence showing that guns are very effective at producing successful outcomes when used in self-defense. Because of this, there is a strong moral presumption in favor of allowing individuals to carry guns in public. After all, our right to life follows us wherever we go, and so the right to defend our lives must also accompany us. If the government is to override this presumption and tell us that we can’t carry our guns into a specific location, then it must assume the special responsibility of making up for the deficit in self-protection that it has created. It must, in other words, provide some alternative that serves the same function that my gun would have served had I been allowed to carry it.

    This deficit is sometimes met, such as in airports, courthouses, and prisons. However, the vast majority of gun-free zones are places in which the government clearly does not meet its special obligation of providing its citizens with a heightened standard of protection. The presence of an ordinary police force is not enough, as police responses almost always come after a crime has taken place.

    When Seconds Matter, the Police Are Minutes Away

    Indeed, according to data from the National Crime Victimization Survey, only 47.3 percent of all personal crimes in 2008 were even reported to police. Of these crimes, only 28 percent of police responses came within five minutes of reporting, 30.3 percent within six to ten minutes, and 33.5 percent within eleven minutes to one hour of reporting.

    Some might object to this by arguing that one’s chance of criminal victimization is so rare that the government does nothing wrong by refusing to provide a heightened standard of protection. This objection misses the point entirely. The very reason one carries a gun is precisely for those rare situations in which it becomes necessary.

    Our right to defend ourselves isn’t a function of the risk of our being victimized. Rights are grounded in the dignity of the individual, not statistical averages. Self-defense is a liberty that I have by virtue of being a human being. I don’t lose that right just because the circumstances in which I will need to use it are statistically rare. Otherwise, this same argument could be used to rule out any kind of self-defense.

    Another objection is that the same could be said of rocket launchers, machine guns, missiles, and nuclear weapons. In restricting these weapons, one might argue, the government “handicaps” our ability to defend ourselves. But it would be absurd to say that it violates our rights. So why are guns an exception? This objection fails for a simple reason: the use of rocket launchers, machine guns, missiles, and nuclear weapons are not proportionate methods for an individual to defend himself against threats that he may reasonably expect to encounter. Handguns and “assault” rifles are.

    So where does this leave us? I’ve argued that most gun-free zones violate our right to self-defense. This is because the government clearly doesn’t meet its heightened obligation of providing for our protection in these areas. If this is correct, then we should be allowed to carry guns into most public places.

    COLUMN BY

    Tim Hsiao

    Tim Hsiao is Instructor of Philosophy and Humanities at Grantham University and Adjunct Professor of Philosophy at Johnson County Community College and Park University. He is also a firearms instructor. His website is timhsiao.org.

    EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

    Most Dangerous Neighborhoods In Sarasota, Florida

    “If you start taking money away from law enforcement you are already seeing crime go up in Milwaukee, New York City, Chicago,” – Sheriff Tom Knight


    Some citizens of the City of Sarasota, Florida have called for defunding their police. Watch:

    Here are the most dangerous neighborhoods in Sarasota for 2021 according to AreaVibes.com. The rankings are calculated based on the number of violent crimes per 100,000 people for each neighborhood, compared to the Sarasota violent crime average. Violent crimes include murder, rape, robbery and assault. The most dangerous areas in Sarasota is based on data from the local law enforcement agency and when not available, also includes estimates based on demographic data.

    Most Dangerous Neighborhoods In Sarasota, Florida

    #1 DOWNTOWN

    POPULATION 3,233
    334%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 2,366 crimes / 100k people
    334% more crime than Sarasota

    #2 ROSEMARY DISTRICT

    POPULATION 1,093
    294%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 2,150 crimes / 100k people
    294% more crime than Sarasota

    #3 17TH STREET

    POPULATION 1,339
    194%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,606 crimes / 100k people
    194% more crime than Sarasota

    #4 ORIGINAL GILLESPIE PARK

    POPULATION 863
    155%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,390 crimes / 100k people
    155% more crime than Sarasota

    #5 CENTRAL COCOANUT

    POPULATION 1,837
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,388 crimes / 100k people
    154% more crime than Sarasota

    #6 SAINT ARMANDS

    POPULATION 157
    134%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,274 crimes / 100k people
    134% more crime than Sarasota

    #7 AMARYLLIS PARK

    POPULATION 3,094
    131%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,261 crimes / 100k people
    131% more crime than Sarasota

    #8 INDIAN BEACH-SAPPHIRE SHORES

    POPULATION 1,090
    VIOLENT CRIMES 1,055 crimes / 100k people
    93% more crime than Sarasota

    #9 POINSETTIA PARK

    POPULATION 236
    55%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 847 crimes / 100k people
    55% more crime than Sarasota

    #10 BAYOU OAKS

    POPULATION 3,472
    53%
    VIOLENT CRIMES 8
    35 crimes / 100k people

    ©AreaVibes.com. All rights reserved.

    VIDEO: Gun Rights Are Women’s Rights

    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. – Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.


    Rumble — Spokesperson for Gun Owners of America, Antonia Okafor Cover, joins us to discuss the surge of women gun owners and why the Second Amendment is so important to women empowerment.

    ©Gun Owners of America. All rights reserved.