SCOTUS Is Hearing Its First Big Gun Case in 9 Years. Heres How It Might Play Out. – The Trace

On December 2, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on a major gun rights case for the first time in almost a decade. The case was brought in 2013 by the New York Pistol and Rifle Association, a gun rights advocacy group located outside of Albany, against New York City. The association argues that a New York City restriction that prevented licensed gun owners from taking their firearms outside the city violated the Second Amendment.

After the Supreme Court agreed to take the case in January of this year, New York City repealed the relevant restriction, hoping the high court would drop the case. It hasnt and could still issue a ruling with broad Second Amendment implications.

The high court has been virtually silent on gun rights since it established that the Second Amendment includes the right to bear arms in the home in District of Columbia v. Heller, a watershed decision from 2008. But the Supreme Courts inertia has frustrated pro-gun advocates who want clarification on the many questions left unanswered in Heller: Does the Second Amendment protect the right to carry guns outside the home? What kinds of firearms are covered by the right to bear arms?

Since Heller, the court has shifted further to the right, but this doesnt mean the petitioners will win. Thats partly because the gun restriction that prompted the suit is no longer law, which could render the entire case moot.

To help us understand exactly what New York State Pistol and Rifle Association v. City of New York means for the law, The Trace spoke to Joseph Blocher, a legal scholar who co-directs the Center for Firearms Law at the Duke University School of Law. Professor Blocher also assisted with briefing for the District of Columbia in the Heller case.

This interview has been lightly edited for clarity and length.

Olivia Li: What is this case about?

Joseph Blocher: The Pistol and Rifle Association is suing over a restriction in New York Citys gun license that prevented gun owners from transporting their firearms outside city limits to a second home or gun range. The association says that the restriction referred to as a transport ban violated the Second Amendment right to bear arms, as well as the constitutional right to travel. There are a lot of different ways this case could go, but it could end up being a pretty big deal.

How are the constitutional questions in this case different than Heller? And how has the composition of the court evolved?

Heller was about whether there was a constitutional right to have a gun inside your home. The Supreme Court said there was, and that the core right in the Second Amendment was to keep an arm in the home for self defense.

This case, however, involves rules and conduct outside the home. Here, the court will be considering whether there is a Second Amendment right to transport your weapon from your home to another place where you have a right to have the gun, like a shooting range. The line between the home and public space has been a battle line in Second Amendment cases since Heller.

This case is also different from Heller in the sense that the Court has changed a lot since Justice [Antonin] Scalia penned the majority opinion in 2008. Justice Scalia has been replaced by Justice [Neil] Gorsuch, and Justice [Anthony] Kennedy was replaced by Justice [Brett] Kavanaugh. Many people believe that Kennedy was the swing vote in Heller, and that he only agreed to sign onto Scalias opinion if it included language that was friendly to reasonable gun regulations. And Kavanaugh and Gorsuch are stronger on gun rights than Kennedy was. The associations case will be heard by a much more conservative, pro-gun court.

Why hasnt the court taken a Second Amendment case in so long?

There werent enough votes to take up gun cases! You need four justices to grant cert [when the Supreme Court agrees to hear a case]. Its likely that Kavanaugh and Gorsuch made the difference here. Before they joined, the Court declined many opportunities to hear Second Amendment cases, including ones about public carry.

But gun rights lawyers have been begging the Supreme Court for years to hear a Second Amendment case. They argue that the Supreme Court has stood idly by while lower federal courts disrespect the right to bear arms by upholding too many gun regulations. Justice [Clarence] Thomas shares this opinion. He has chided his fellow justices for not supervising lower courts on the Second Amendment.

What do the petitioners want in this case?

The petitioners want to be able to transport their guns from within New York City limits to an out-of-city gun range or second home.

Its clear that the association thinks this case is also about the right to bear arms outside the home, not just transport them. But New York Citys regulation only addressed the transport of guns between places. Gun rights groups have tried to attack restrictions on public carry in other cases, but the Supreme Court never wanted to get involved.

What has happened in this case up to this point?

The association lost its case in a federal district court in 2015. And it lost again in 2018, when an appellate court ruled that New York Citys regulation was constitutional because it served New York Citys public safety goals. The Association asked the Supreme Court to reconsider that decision in September of 2018.

Theres another interesting piece to this: The New York City Police Department repealed the transport ban in July of 2019. That same month, New York State passed a law that says all cities within the state must allow gun permit holders to transport their weapons to second homes or gun ranges.

If New York City repealed the law, why is this case still going forward?

The association is saying that New York City only repealed the transport ban because it was afraid of how the Supreme Court might rule. But normally, when a person bringing a lawsuit asks for something, and she gets it, the case is over. In legal terms, this is called mootness, because theres no longer an issue to resolve. Courts should not hear cases that are moot.

There are some exceptions to this rule. For example, you wouldnt want a defendant to stop trespassing as soon as a lawsuit is filed just to get the case dismissed, only to start trespassing again. However, in this case, theres no danger of that happening. Remember, New York State passed a law that prohibits New York City from re-instituting its transport ban.

How might the Court rule? And what are some potential consequences?

There is a range of possible outcomes, but its helpful to think of them in two buckets. First, the court could dismiss the case as moot, because theres nothing the court could do to put the petitioners in a better position than theyre already in. They are free to travel with firearms outside New York City. Second, the justices could say the case should live on, and they will try to figure out whether the transport ban violates the Second Amendment.

Within this second bucket, there are a few options. The Court could agree with the reasoning of the lower court and hold that New York Citys regulation does not unconstitutionally burden gun rights. This preserves the status quo.

However, the Supreme Court could instead conclude that the Second Amendment protects the transport of guns to specific locations, as well as the right to bear arms in the home. But such a decision doesnt necessarily turn the tides. The Court could simply say that this particular regulation in New York City goes outside the bounds of reasonable gun laws. Because no other city has a rule like New Yorks and New York took its own law off the books this is a narrow result that changes literally nothing on the ground.

Another option: The Supreme Court could issue a much broader ruling where the justices say that theres a right to public carry. The Supreme Court has never before announced that the Second Amendment covers the right to bear arms in public, although most lower courts have held or assumed otherwise.

Finally, the Supreme Court could change the way lower courts analyze Second Amendment cases. Right now, when a gun rights advocate challenges a firearm law, the courts try to figure out if the gun law is specifically designed to serve public safety goals. In the associations case, the Supreme Court could announce a much more originalist test, one that requires courts to find a particular historical basis for modern day gun regulations. This change could make cases more difficult for governments who want to defend firearm regulations.

We talked about how the Court composition has changed a lot since Heller. The world outside the Supreme Court has changed a great deal too. Weve seen an increase in mass shootings and gun violence, as well as more social activism on gun reform. Will the justices be affected by this?

Thats a really fair question, and its one that comes up in every case, not just gun rights cases: How should the Supreme Court respond to public opinion, if it should at all? And I dont think I have the answer to that. What I can say is that all of the justices in Heller recognized the problem of gun violence in the United States. Justice Scalia even wrote at the end of his opinion that gun violence was a serious problem. That was 2008. Sandy Hook, Orlando, Vegas, and Parkland all postdate Heller.

Who do you think will win?

I think the New York State Pistol and Rifle Association has already won this case, because New York City repealed its transport ban. The association has gotten everything it has asked for, and thats precisely why I believe the Court should dismiss this case as moot, no matter what the justices think about the Second Amendment.

When will we get a decision?

If the Court dismisses the case simply because New York City already repealed the regulation, then we could get a decision very quickly. If the Court actually tries to figure out whether the New York City regulation violated the Second Amendment, well likely be waiting longer. But its really hard to say.

Do you think the Supreme Court will take more Second Amendment cases in the future?

I think if the Court dismisses this case on procedural grounds, theres a good chance it will take another Second Amendment case soon, maybe even by the end of this term.

Here is the original post:

SCOTUS Is Hearing Its First Big Gun Case in 9 Years. Heres How It Might Play Out. - The Trace

The Supreme Court Shouldn’t Disrupt the Judicial Consensus on the Second Amendment –

This piece was originally published by SCOTUSblog.

In one sense, the stakes inNew York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New Yorkcouldnt be lower: The challenged regulation, a one-of-a-kind New York City restriction on transporting licensed handguns outside city limits, has already been repealed, arguably rendering the case moot. But when it comes to Second Amendment doctrine and methodology, the stakes are higher than theyve been in a decade. If the petitioners have their way, the Supreme Court could reject the mainstream approach for deciding Second Amendment questions in favor of a more radical test focused solely on text, history, and tradition and without consideration of contemporary realities of guns and gun violence. That would be a mistake.

The methodological debate animating this case began 10 years ago inDistrict of Columbia v. Heller, in which the court held that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms for private purposes like self-defense, and that the right like all constitutional rights is subject to regulation. But, aside from listing some presumptively lawful measures, the court did not identify a doctrinal mechanism to evaluate those regulations (tiers of scrutiny, adequate alternatives, substantial burden, etc.), instead leaving the task to the lower courts.

In more than 1,000 cases sinceHeller, thedoctrinal dust has begun to settle, and the outlines of constitutional rules and standards have become clearer. Of course, no constitutional right is governed by a single doctrinal test; even the canard that fundamental rights get strict scrutiny repeated often by the petitioners in this case issimply false. (Free speech claims, to take one obvious example, are governed by a wide range of tests.) But courts have nonetheless converged, with striking unanimity, on a general framework for adjudicating Second Amendment cases. That framework is frequently called the two-step test.

The first step is a threshold inquiry about whether the Second Amendment comes into play at all. AsHellermakes clear, theres no scrutiny necessary for bans on possession by felons (with arguable and limited exceptions for as-applied challenges), or dangerous or unusual weapons such as machine guns, or weapons in sensitive places. For those regulations that do raise Second Amendment questions, courts proceed to the second step and apply something like a sliding scale of means-end scrutiny to evaluate the relationship between the state interest served by the regulation and the methods employed to further that interest. The more seriously a regulation interferes with the core interest of self-defense in the home, the more scrutiny it gets.

This framework is so basic as to be archetypal constitutional rights adjudication frequently involves a threshold inquiry into the rights applicability, followed by some context-specific scrutiny of burden, purpose and tailoring. In the First Amendment context, for example, courts regularly ask whether an activity campaign contributions, for example counts as speech before applying whatever doctrinal test is appropriate.

In short, assome constitutional law scholars have concluded, using the two-part framework means treating the right to keep and bear arms like the fundamental right that it is. The two-part framework, moreover, accommodates both historical analysis and consideration of contemporary costs and benefits; it includes both bright-line rules (prohibitions on laws that go too far) and standards. And the fact that it has been endorsed by every federal court of appeals is a resounding vote of confidence.

And yet the petitioners in this case contend that applying this common methodology converts the Second Amendment into a second-class right. Courts are too lenient with regard to the tailoring analysis, the argument goes, or misconstrue the historical element of the framework. They say the two-part test has been systematically misapplied.

Of course, mistakes are inevitable in any high-volume area of constitutional litigation, and some have undeniably occurred in Second Amendment cases. One court, for example, found that the amendment protectedonly those arms in existence at the nations founding not modern-day weapons like stun guns a decision overturned by a unanimous Supreme Court. In truth, such mistakes have been relatively rare. Most Second Amendment cases areweak to begin with. This is partly because ofHelleritself, which blessed as presumptively lawful various regulations that are often challenged, like felon-in-possession laws. Its also due to the fact that gun politics prevent most stringent regulations from being enacted in the first place this is not a target-rich environment for gun-rights litigators. When a court errs in upholding an unconstitutional law, however, the typical way to correct the error is through appellate decisions. In this case, by contrast, the Supreme Court is being asked to forgo the typical approach, toss out the consensus methodology and supercharge the Second Amendment with a new set of rules.

The most prominent alternative to the two-part framework is the one articulated by then-judge Brett Kavanaugh in a dissent in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: That gun regulations should not be evaluated using any level of scrutiny, but rather by looking to text, history and tradition alone.

Some advocates of this new test hope and expect that it would expand the right to keep and bear arms to some imagined historical ideal, immune from regulation. But that historical image is itself ahistorical: Gun rights and regulations have coexisted for centuries. The laws have changed, because guns and gun violence have changed, but from the very beginning weve had versions of safe-storage requirements, bans on dangerous and unusual weapons, restrictions on public carrying and even outright bans on public carry including in supposed gun havens like Dodge City and Tombstone. Guns are a part of American history, but so, too, is gun regulation. For reference, there are more than 1,500 entries inDukes Repository of Historical Gun Laws, a searchable, non-comprehensive database of firearms regulations that predate the federal governments first major intervention into the field in 1934. A properly applied historical test should uphold a lot of gun regulation.

The main problem with relying solely on text, history and tradition, however, is that it doesnt provide useful guidance for modern-day regulations that respond to modern-day gun violence. The text alone cant tell you whether a machine gun is an arm or whether convicted felons are among the People the Second Amendment protects. The 27 words of the amendment are silent on many questions, and history and tradition dont speak with one voice there were and are significantregionaldifferences in approaches to gun regulation, as well as divisionsbetween urban and rural areas.

Perhaps in some extreme cases (a total ban on public carry, for example), text, history and tradition would provide relatively clear rules. But for most standard forms of modern gun regulation restrictive licensing schemes for public carry, for example, or prohibitions on high-capacity magazines or on gun possession by people convicted of domestic violence all of the work would be done by analogical reasoning. Judges would have to decide for themselves whether certain modern guns or gun laws are relevantly similar to laws from 150 or 200 years ago.

How would such a test of judicial analogies work in practice? Is a rocket launcher like a musket, because you can lift it, or is it like a cannon, because its so powerful? How is an AR-15 like a musket? Do you compare barrel lengths? Muzzle velocity? Relative deadliness? Such questions place a lot of weight on judges own, perhaps unexamined intuitions. In this way, the test of text, history and tradition simply cloaks judicial discretion in an air of objectivity.

In practice, the supposedly historical inquiry eventually comes back, in a roundabout and less transparent way, to the same kinds of questions that are front and center for means-end scrutiny. Good analogical reasoning requires finding relevant similarities, and whats most relevant about guns is their function, especially their usefulness for whatHellersays is the core lawful purpose of self-defense. If automatic weapons are prohibited, but semi-automatic handguns are permitted, does that materially interfere with peoples ability to defend themselves in their homes? If so, has the government shown that the prohibition is appropriately tailored to a sufficiently strong interest? The two-part framework makes those questions explicit, rather than laundering them through a subjective form of historical formalism.

Text, history and traditionabsolutely matterin the context of the Second Amendment, just as in other areas of constitutional law. But to make them the sole measure of constitutionality wouldnt give much useful guidance in hard cases, and would invite a lot of unarticulated, potentially hidden judicial discretion and power. Second Amendment scholarNelson Lund puts the point well: Pretending to find the answers in history and tradition will encourage either covert judicial policymaking, which is just what reliance on history and tradition is supposed to prevent, or ill-supported historical stories in defense of results that could honestly and responsibly be justified through normal means-end scrutiny.

The Supreme Court is being asked in this case to reject a doctrinal framework unanimously endorsed by the federal courts of appeals and widely used in constitutional-rights jurisprudence, and to adopt instead a brand-new doctrinal test that would almost certainly invite broad judicial discretion. We hope that the court declines that invitation.

Joseph Blocher is Lanty L. Smith 67 Professor of Law at Duke Law School, where he co-directs the Center for Firearms Law. Eric Ruben is assistant professor of law at SMU Dedman School of Law and a Brennan Center fellow. Along with Darrell A.H. Miller of Duke Law School, they filedan amicus brief in support of neither sideinNew York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York.

The views expressed here are the authors own and not necessarily those of the Brennan Center.

Go here to read the rest:

The Supreme Court Shouldn't Disrupt the Judicial Consensus on the Second Amendment -

Fannin County joins other Texas counties as Second Amendment sanctuary movement – KXII-TV

FANNIN COUNTY, Tex. (KXII) Fannin County has declared themselves a Second Amendment sanctuary county during a commissioners court meeting Tuesday, making them one of at least 15 counties across the state of Texas to do so.

County officials said it all started when a candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination said he planned to take away certain kinds of firearms if he was elected next year. In response, counties all around the state have declared their properties, facilities and resources off limits to any government trying to seize weapons or arrest people for having them.

Fannin County Judge Randy Moore says the proclamation was approved unanimously, 5 - 0, by the court.

"It just lets our county know where we stand," said Moore. "We feel like those are God given rights, we feel like those are rights that were given to us by the Constitution of the United States, and we plan to uphold them."

Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson said he wants people to know that nothing is going to change in terms of the legal purchasing process.

"We're not going to participate with the federal government, or anyone that's going to come in and try and take away people's guns" said Johnson.

This means the county will not allow anyone to use their resources if they try and take away someone's firearm, such as the jail, or any help from law enforcement.

Some Fannin County residents were not enthused. Bill Roberts, who lives in Bailey, said during the court meeting he didn't see how the resolution fell within the rights of the court.

"Are we now putting the putting the sheriff and commissioners court in charge of what's constitutional and what is not?" Roberts said.

Continued here:

Fannin County joins other Texas counties as Second Amendment sanctuary movement - KXII-TV

Williams: The "Second Amendment Sanctuary" movement is a sham. But more local control is a good idea. –

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Williams: The "Second Amendment Sanctuary" movement is a sham. But more local control is a good idea. -

Collin County Passes Resolution Supporting the Second Amendment – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Collin County has joined a growing number of Texas cities taking a stand for the Second Amendment.

So far, at least 10 counties have declared themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries.

The trend came after the mass shooting in El Paso and comments by former presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke during a Democratic primary debate.

"Hell yes, we're going to take away your AR-15, we're not going to let them be used against fellow Americans anymore!" O'Rourke exclaimed.

Monday, Collin County passed a resolution that's "reaffirming our support for the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution."

It was introduced by Collin County Judge Chris Hill during Monday's commissioners meeting.

"I wanted to put together a resolution that says we will honor our oath of office. We will follow the laws and we will preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the laws," Hill said.

Members of the public weighed in.

"People kill people, not guns," said Fairview City Councilman Roland Feldman.

"I have never felt more afraid for my brown boys than I do in this county," said a tearful opponent.

Since O'Rourke's response at the Democratic debate in September, Hill said more than 100 people came forward to request the county take a stand for the Second Amendment.

"That frustrates citizens in this community who are law abiding," Hill said.

Some criticized the timing -- three months after an Allen man carried out the El Paso mass shooting and the same day as an Allen teenager was laid to rest. Marquel Ellis Jr., 16, was shot and killed at a party on Nov. 16.

"I would love to see the county be just as interested in everyone's safety as they are to try to make a political statement," said one critic at Monday's meeting.

Supporters said with gun rights under fire, defending the Second Amendment is their first priority.

"In this day and age, when so many politicians are out here trying to shred the constitution and not stand by their oath, I applaud you," one supporter said.

The resolution passed unanimously.

The resolution reads as follows:

A resolution of the Collin County Commissioners Court, reaffirming our support for the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.

WHEREAS, we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men and women are created equal, that they are endowed by the Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; and

WHEREAS, for the benefit and protection of all people, these unalienable rights are enumerated and enshrined in the Constitution and laws of the United States and the State of Texas; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, we hereby reaffirm our sacred oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States and the State of Texas. So help us God.

A resolution of the Collin County Commissioners Court, reaffirming our support for the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.

WHEREAS, we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men and women are created equal, that they are endowed by the Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed;

and WHEREAS, for the benefit and protection of all people, these unalienable rights are enumerated and enshrined in the Constitution and laws of the United States and the State of Texas;

now, therefore, be it RESOLVED, we hereby reaffirm our sacred oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States and the State of Texas. So help us God.

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Collin County Passes Resolution Supporting the Second Amendment - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

"Meet Me in the Middle" Podcast on the Second Amendment – Reason

The way I explain the 2nd amendment, is by analogy to a volunteer fire department.

Suppose youre concerned, not just that your community may suffer from fires, but that arsonists might get control of the local government. Your fire department might end up being sent out of the way while the fires raged, or even set to igniting them itself.

But if you rely on a volunteer fire department, even if arsonists are in control of the government, that fire department will be motivated to put fires out, not set them.

And if you guarantee the right of people to own and train with fire fighting equipment, then even if your local arsonist rules shut down the volunteer fire department, you can still organize to put out the fires they set.

The 2nd amendment, like the rest of the Bill of Rights, is not intended to facilitate the government doing the right thing out of good motives. Its intended to stop the government from doing the wrong thing out of bad motives. You simply cant understand the Bill of Rights if youre not willing to think of the government as a potential enemy of the people, intent on doing evil, not good.

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"Meet Me in the Middle" Podcast on the Second Amendment - Reason

19 States Now Have Counties with Second Amendment Sanctuaries in Place – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News


USA -( Communities around the nation are standing up to the narrative that gun control is the will of the people. Over 230 counties, towns, and cities have passed what is known as Second Amendment Sanctuary Ordinances, or SASOs.

These ordinances tell their state and federal government that the county does not support gun control and that it will not be enforced even if it becomes law.

Just in the past month, counties in Virginia, Wisconsin, Florida, Tennessee, and Arizona have enacted versions of SASOs, bringing the number of states that have them up to 19.

However, while these ordinances are passed for the right reasons, they could be better.

Many of the ordinances that have been passed simply declare the county as a Second Amendment Sanctuary, but do not usually offer any way to enforce the ordinance.

In other words, these SASOs dont have any teeth, or ways to hold those who break the ordinance accountable.

That is where our SASO is different.

Gun Owners of America has created a SASO template that can be adopted by any community, county, city, or town.

This minor addition makes your SASO much more meaningful and turns it into something impactful, rather than just a simple resolution.

Please click here to learn more about our Second Amendment Sanctuary Ordinance and to download a copy for yourself.

Whether you are a county commissioner, on the city council or just a private citizen who wants to see our resolution passed in your community please take a copy to tell people about it.

Click here to let us know if your locality has taken up our SASO.

We are in this fight together.

In liberty,

Matthew PattersonDirector of State and Local AffairsGun Owners of America

P.S. Please take our SASO to your commission or council and make your community a Second Amendment sanctuary. And if youve let your membership lapse, make sure to renew your membership in Gun Owners of America today for only $20!

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19 States Now Have Counties with Second Amendment Sanctuaries in Place - AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Former Brady Campaign President Dan Gross, Stands with Second Amendment Supporters – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News


USA -( In an amazing twist that was somehow completely overlooked by most of the nations media, Dan Gross, who served for 6 years as president of the gun control advocacy group, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, joined thousands of Second Amendment supporters at a rally on the West Lawn of the nations capital in Washington DC.

Not only did Gross express support for Second Amendment rights and respect for gun owners, but he also criticized gun control groups for intentionally and dogmatically demonizing guns and gun owners, while focusing on restricting guns instead of saving lives.

In the past, there have occasionally been lobbyists and politicians who abandoned pro-rights groups or positions to express support for some form of gun control, and those defectors typically received significant media attention for their actions.

Gross remarks are available on multiple YouTube channels and were covered in the conservative and gun press, including here on AmmoLand News, so its not hard for anyone interested to see exactly what he said.

As a member of the 2nd Amendment Rally Organizing Committee, I interviewed Gross before we agreed to invite him to the rally. I found him to be sincere in his commitment to the right to arms, if not quite as devoted to the full extent of the protections the amendment provides. At least hes open to discussion and learning.

Theres a possibility that Gross came out in support of the Second Amendment as a publicity stunt, looking for exposure and support for his new effort that focuses more on the responsibilities involved in gun ownership than on additional government regulations, and Im okay with that. Gun ownership carries significant responsibilities, and as long as those pushing the message of responsible firearm ownership arent advocating for government intervention into the lives of gun owners, I welcome them to the discussion. I might not agree with everything that Gross decides to promote, just as I dont always agree with the actions and positions of established gun rights groups, but iron sharpens iron. Discussions, even arguments, over philosophy and the best approach to the right to arms are a useful and productive process, unlike shouting and foot-stomping.

We gathered over 2000 rights advocates on the Capitol lawn on very short notice, and without funding or active support from any of the major advocacy organizations. We brought together some 30 speakers representing a wide array of perspectives and approaches, all fiercely advocating against the creeping encroachment of government regulation on our fundamental right to arms. We were respectful, cheerful, and more diverse in terms of race, outlook, and lifestyle than the dominant media would ever admit.

We used technology to send our message far beyond the couple of thousand in direct attendance to thousands more virtual participants watching the live stream, and still, more who have and continue to watch the archive footage online, making this one of the most widely seen Second Amendment events ever held.

The core theme of the rally was the message that You Are the Gun Lobby. It is and must remain the core message of the pro-rights movement. You cant rely on some group any group to protect your rights, and just sending a few dollars now and then does not get the job done. You must take direct action in the form of calls and letters to elected officials, and involvement in getting the right people elected. Its also critical that you engage with friends and family, with clear facts and by demonstrating a strong example of responsible gun ownership.

Efforts to spread the truth about gun owners and gun ownership into non-traditional communities women, African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, LGBTQ folks, and people of every political and religious persuasion depend on you. We need everyone to know that the Second Amendment protects THEIR rights, just as it protects our rights. The Second Amendment is for everyone, and we need everyone we come in contact with to feel welcome and appreciated as a fellow rights supporter. The right to arms must transcend our differences and bind us together under a single banner and common cause.

Dont let other differences and disagreements get in the way of what really matters. The right to arms is universal. Christians and Jews and Muslims and Sikhs and Hindus and Buddhists and atheists and everyone else, have the right to defend themselves and their families from criminals and from oppressors. We dont have to agree on the path to Heaven or road to enlightenment, but we can all agree that life is precious and worth defending.

Sure, its hard to understand how someone could be a supporter of the Second Amendment and also be a supporter of Beto ORourke, but they undoubtedly exist. The trick is to focus on the former rather than the latter. Embrace the agreement rather than focusing on the difference, and you might have a chance of changing their mind about their choice in presidential candidates. If instead, you focus on the difference, you not only have virtually no chance of influencing that choice, you run a very high probability of pushing that person away from support for rights, by making them feel unwelcome. Thats not how we win in the long run. For more insights into this sort of thing, check out the new podcast from my liberal friend Sarah Cade and Jon Hauptman. I think this is going to be a very useful series.

The Second Amendment belongs to everyone, and we must let everyone know that because we need everyone supporting it if we ever hope to secure our rights.

It wasnt that long ago that some of the most dedicated defenders of the Second Amendment in Congress were Democrats, and gun rights legislation could pass with bipartisan support. Thats not the case today, but could be true again at some point in the future, but not if we push away Democrat gun owners.

Thats why I welcome Dan Gross into our fraternity. He cant hurt us, and he could potentially help us immensely. He can help us to understand our opponents better, and thats always useful. The most important thing though, is that we can only win this fight by increasing our numbers. Rejecting and offending people who could be our allies is just foolish and self-defeating.

You Are the Gun Lobby. Your activism, your example, and your influence are what will make the difference between winning this fight, or sliding down the slippery slope of never-ending, incremental gun control.

The 2nd Amendment Rally Organizing Committee has disbanded, and all of our records are being deleted, as we promised they would be, but a new committee is already forming to hold another rally next year. Start planning now to be part of its success, but more importantly, start acting now to own the title of the Gun Lobby, and lead the way into a brighter future.

About Jeff Knox:

Jeff Knox is a second-generation political activist and director of The Firearms Coalition. His father Neal Knox led many of the early gun rights battles for your right to keep and bear arms. Read Neal Knox The Gun Rights War.

The Firearms Coalition is a loose-knit coalition of individual Second Amendment activists, clubs and civil rights organizations. Founded by Neal Knox in 1984, the organization provides support to grassroots activists in the form of education, analysis of current issues, and with a historical perspective of the gun rights movement. The Firearms Coalition has offices in Buckeye, Arizona and Manassas, VA. Visit:

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Former Brady Campaign President Dan Gross, Stands with Second Amendment Supporters - AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

LETTERS: City driving habits are awful; impact of the Second Amendment – Colorado Springs Gazette

City driving behaviors awful

A street near where I live has had a number of complaints from residents about speeding vehicles, most of which continue through to other streets in the area. The city Traffic Engineering Department is now working the issue and is likely to install calming features that narrow the road to slow traffic.

I asked for and received speed data for the street in question. The speed limit is 25 mph. Over a two day period in one lane, only 1.48% of vehicles drove at a speed below the 25 mph limit. Over 61% drove at 35 mph or higher; 33.7% were doing 40 mph or higher. Out of 1,416 vehicles, 121 were clocked at 50 mph or higher; thats two times the limit. Thirty-seven vehicles traveled at 65 mph or higher.

Nobody in his right mind should condone these kinds of driving habits. However, one has to wonder if these same bad behaviors dont also exist on the other streets in our neighborhood that are traveled by the same drivers. Narrowing one street will not likely change driver behaviors on others. To really solve the problem using the tools available to the city would mean narrowing multiple streets, not just the one that is under scrutiny. This doesnt seem practical.

I have long opposed photo enforcement. Im not fond of the thought of being under surveillance wherever I go, and Im not fond of the possibility of being ticketed two weeks after the fact by a machine that cant immediately field questions or points in my defense.

I have now changed my mind. Our driving behaviors are awful; the city cant reasonably make physical changes to every street to slow people down; and the police cannot have an enforcement presence on many streets while also chasing bad guys and clearing accidents.

I realize this is not popular, but it is time for us to bite the bullet and agree to the use of portable photo speed enforcement tools. Such devices can reliably rein in extreme speeders with relative ease and at low cost. To be clear, Im not advocating rigid enforcement of the limit; many well-intending drivers will sometimes find themselves a little bit over the limit before correcting the problem. But, I am saying that we should not tolerate people who do over 40 or 50 mph in a 25 mph zone, and that photo speed enforcement can, and would, solve that problem.

Charles Rollman

Colorado Springs

The Monday Gazette Sports section article by Brent Briggeman briefly recognized the Air Force offensive line. Those down linemen are the reason that Air Force running backs are breaking records this year, but they are never recognized during the game. Why cant announcers say lead block by Ferguson or key blocks by Hattock and Vikupitz just like they announce the runner or receivers names? It might take an extra spotter in the booth, especially with the Falcons complicated blocking schemes, but it would be nice to recognize the guys who are winning the games in the fourth quarter.

Rip Blaisdell

Teller County

Thank you for the article in the Nov. 20 edition of the Gazette: Warm ocean water delays sea ice for Alaska towns and wildlife. The dangers of the climate crisis need to be emphasized by our tireless free press to counteract the constant climate denials of the Trump administration.

(I am a subscriber, but I read it online. Thanks for that, too.)

Susan Permut


In watching the congressional investigation into possible illegal activities by the present occupant of the White House, the meeting notes between President Donlad Trump and Vladimir Putin in Helsinki were mentioned. If memory serves me, I believe that President Trump took those notes from the meeting secretary with him as he left the meeting with Putin. Have those been published? It would be interesting to know the contents of said notes, dont you think? It might help in clarifying present matters.

Bob Armintor

Colorado Springs

At this time there are nearly a dozen countries protesting their government. Many of these protesters are being shot and killed fighting government soldiers and police. These people only have rocks and wooden clubs to fight with.

What is the common denominator of these countries? The citizens of these countries have no guns to confront a corrupt government. The other common denominator is that these citizens only other alternative is to leave their homeland. This is very evident in the droves of people leaving the Middle East and trying to get into any eastern European country.

The same situation exists at our southern border. These illegal immigrants are lured here and groomed by Democratic politicians. (The Democrats cannot win an election without the illegal votes). Case in point is the 3 million illegal votes from California in the last presidential election. The dream of these Democratic politicians is to disarm American gun owners.

Then they can throw the Constitution in file 13. After that they can make and change laws at their own discretion. These poor people coming across our southern border have no idea that they would be voting for a government just like they one they left.

Be aware that no country in the world would be foolish enough to plan a land invasion of our country with 170 million gun owners.

As a Japanese general once said after Pearl Harbor and the U.S. declaring war. We have made a very bad mistake; The Americans have an armed citizen behind every tree.

The Second Amendment was not designed for personal protection even though that is an added benefit. It was to keep out government under control. (A lesson learned by our forefathers fighting an oppressive British government).

Max Tallent

Colorado Springs

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LETTERS: City driving habits are awful; impact of the Second Amendment - Colorado Springs Gazette

Readers sound off on ad hominem attacks, the Second Amendment, and Mutts (again) – New York Daily News

Garwood, N.J.: Dear Snarky Voice of the People Editor: I take exception to your obnoxious labeling of Voicer Skip Triviginos letter This is a stick up as if it is amusing that we readers are now being presented a lesser Daily News. Even if a lesser News is still light years ahead of that rag across town that Sauron, er, Rupert Murdoch, publishes, Skip rightly cited the ever-shrinking comics section, the letting go of sportswriters, rising price of your paper and the last straw, the axing of the Mutts comic strip. Mutts, featuring Mooch the cat and Earl the dog is quite simply one of the best comic strips of all time. Period. Thats not my opinion, rather its the opinion of the greatest cartoonist of all time, Charles Schulz. And that aint chopped liver. Mooch and Earl have far more heart and insight into the human condition then the person who axed them out of just plain bloody mindedness and lack of a sense of humor. Come on, Daily News, your readers have spoken and we want our Mutts back. As Sonny Liston said after his last fight: I think its time to sit down and reevaluate our philosophy. Mike Gordeuk

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Readers sound off on ad hominem attacks, the Second Amendment, and Mutts (again) - New York Daily News

Is the Second Amendment worth it? – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Opinion By Alan J Chwick & Joanne D Eisen

USA -( It is without a doubt that our country will elect a Democrat President sometime in the future.

Folks, the Democrats are good at promising cheap trinkets to the lazy and they are great at frightening people into making decisions against their own interests. We know for sure that the Democrats will eventually get back into the White House.

That's the way US politics has worked in the past.

For decades, the Dimwits, aka the Democrats, ignored the benefits and magnified the disadvantages of civilian-owned weapons. They tried to frighten gun owners and non-gun owners alike into making poor choices based on emotion, and not on the facts.

The Dimwits tried to fool us into peaceably giving up our weapons. Instead of giving up our weapons, we gave them Trump.

After Trump, will we peaceably disarm?

Now that the Dimwits realize that their lies failed to stampede us into disarmament, as has occurred in other countries, they are demanding that we sell back our so-called assault weapons, and whatever other classes of guns they fear. The Dimwits claim that our Founders never imagined the effect of technology on personal weapons. But our Founding Fathers did have full knowledge of the arms possibilities. They had knowledge of the Puckle Gun (considered one of the first machine guns ever built-in 1718) and others like it.

Our Founders gave us the Second Amendment fully understanding, and expecting, improvements in firearms and weapons technology. Logic Note: If the Second Amendment does not apply to modern technology, then the First Amendment should NOT either.

Those who wrote the Constitution wanted to limit government; they did not want to hinder technical genius.

The Dimwits plot to pass the Universal Instant Check System. If it were to be signed into law, rest assured that lists of firearms owners would be made, and used to confiscate weapons and ammunition. They are so eager to disarm us, that they can hardly wait for RED FLAG LAWS to accomplish that task one by one. The Dimwits are also too lazy to collect the 4473 documents from FFL Dealers, who must retain the 4473s for not less than 20 years, per 478.129(b) Record retention: Firearms transaction record.

The Dimwits believe that when new gun bans become the law of the land, house to house searches will occur and we, the law-abiding citizens that we are, will quietly and happily disarm.

With all the new rights the Dimwits have normed into our culture, one would think that one has retained the right to safety in the home. So we would not expect government agents to swarm our homes, endangering our families, and take our property.

But that seems to be their plan.

The Dimwits should surely remember that past gun bans have not been fully obeyed.

Crazy Dimwits are finally telling us the truth when they promise voters that the next time they win the White House, forcible disarmament will follow. After all, according to Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), who not so jokingly reminded us about who would be controlling the atomic weapons, It would be a short war.

If even thinking about nuking our land and our people isn't insane, what is?

Although Swalwell was quickly shushed, the proverbial cat was fully out of the bag. But the Dimwits could no longer restrain from hiding their madness, Beto also made the confiscation claim.

The Dimwits, of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, labeled our NRA as a domestic terrorist organization! Can you imagine that a Civil Rights Organization, who helped train the freed slaves and promotes safety, is a domestic terrorist organization?

Our Second Amendment, and our Constitution, are under attack by lunatics, liars, and idiots. They are mean, nasty, and extremely destructive. They have a selfish streak, and can not be trusted.

Some of these loonies may be family. We may love them! But how can we ever trust them in the future? The political path they chose is not necessarily a peaceful path.

Why have we not seen most of the Democratic party apparatchiks flee their party's massive lies, not only about the benefits of disarmament and socialism but about Republican subversion against the very Constitution we love?

Millions of Dimwits should have renounced the hatred of our country and spoke out against the damage that recent Dimwit policies have done to our Constitution, the country, our Presidency.

How many in the Dimwit Party really believe that we firearm owners are eager to sell out our beloved country to the enemies of freedom?

Our souls are wrapped in the flag of freedom!

Are their souls?

Is the Second Amendment worth it?

Is it all worth it?

And the answers are: No, Yes, and Yes!

About the Authors:

Alan J Chwick has been involved with firearms much of his life and is the Retired Managing Coach of the Freeport NY Junior Marksmanship Club. He has escaped from New York State to South Carolina and is an SC FFL ( [emailprotected] | TWITTER: @iNCNF

Joanne D Eisen, DDS (Ret.) practiced dentistry on Long Island, NY. She has collaborated and written on firearm politics for the past 30+ years. She has also escaped from New York State but to Virginia. [emailprotected]

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Is the Second Amendment worth it? - AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Self-proclaimed Second Amendment auditor bonds out of jail after judge refuses bond reduction – KFOR Oklahoma City

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) The self-proclaimed Second Amendment auditor arrested for allegedly bringing an AR-style rifle into a metro restaurant has bonded out of jail.

Timothy Harper

Timothy Harper bonded out of the Oklahoma County Jail at 7:43 p.m. on Friday, according to a jail official.

Harpers jail exit came hours after Oklahoma County Judge Ray Elliott refused to lower Harpers $100,000 bond. However, the judge did lift the requirement that it be a cash bond.

The judge also added stipulations to the bond, including that if Harper bonds out, he wear an ankle monitor and surrender his weapons.

Harper was arrested for allegedly bringing an AR-style rifle into a Twin Peaks restaurant the day after the new permitless carry law went into effect this month.

The police who arrested him said the law prohibiting rifles in businesses that serve alcohol didnt change.

Harpers attorney argued that the $100,000 bond wasnt appropriate for a crime that carries a maximum penalty of two years in prison and a $1.000 fine, and that it isnt necessary to ensure hell show up in court for future hearings.

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Self-proclaimed Second Amendment auditor bonds out of jail after judge refuses bond reduction - KFOR Oklahoma City

Original intent and the Second Amendment – Post Register

Original intent is a term often quoted in Supreme Court rulings. It means what was actually intended at the time that the Constitution was written. The best way to make this determination posthumously is to examine the historical records of society and technology at the time they were written.

In 1787, when the Constitution was written, the majority of the American landmass was under control of Native Americans, slavery was flourishing and the prevailing weapon was the flintlock rifle. Much of the frontier was lawless, and there were frequent clashes between the natives and the people moving onto their lands. According to historical records, there were frequent groups of armed men used to hunt down runaway slaves.

Under these circumstances, it was entirely understandable that there were constitutional protections for militias and gun ownership since the government clearly had a policy of driving the Native Americans from their ancestral lands, the frontier was often lawless and slaves often either rebelled against brutal conditions or attempted an escape to the north or even Canada. Hence the Second Amendment was written and ratified securing the right to hunt down runaway slaves and to force Native Americans from their lands.

In actual practice, the military had the responsibility for driving Native Americans from their lands, and thus the main use of private armed militias was enforcing slavery. These things are well documented in the historical record.

Fast forward to the present, and these conditions have no relevance. Flintlocks have long since been replaced by weapons with lethality far beyond anything imaginable by the writers of the Constitution. Native Americans have long since been driven from their ancestral lands and confined to reservations. Even though the movies have glamorized the posses of cowboys, by far the greatest use of the militia component of the Second Amendment was for the capture of runaway slaves. Slavery has long since been eliminated, and militias have long since been replaced by city, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies. Yet the Second Amendment still stands as the law of the land in clear violation of the original intent doctrine. Not only is it still the law of the land, but it also has been expanded to allow private ownership of weapons of war that have unleashed mayhem within our cities.

Can anyone claim that this was what our founding fathers anticipated?

If a challenge to the Second Amendment were to be taken to the Supreme Court, the outcome would depend upon whether the justices were to own up to the reality that exists today or vote to stick with the president and Senate that put them onto the court. Often the Supreme Court justices bend to their political base rather than the original intent that they claim.

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Original intent and the Second Amendment - Post Register

Florence County becomes first Second Amendment Sanctuary County in Wisconsin –

FLORENCE COUNTY, Wisc. (WLUC) - Florence County is the first county in Wisconsin to become a Second Amendment Sanctuary County. The Florence County Board of Supervisors passed their resolution Tuesday night.

Florence County has made history.

"We are the first county in Wisconsin to be a second Amendment Sanctuary County which I think is huge, said Mark Kerznar, a Florence County Citizen.

This is push-back to the red-flag legislation supported by the governor and several lawmakers. The red flag law gives power to the sheriff to confiscate a person's weapons if they're deemed dangerous.

By being a Second Amendment Sanctuary County, the citizens would follow the laws that are deemed constitutional, given and set by the county.

"You can tell tonight we had a full county board room, which usually is not the case, so there is a lot of support here, said Florence County Sheriff, Dan Miller.

The resolution, which has a number of reasons why Florence County decided to become a Second Amendment Sanctuary County, was passed by the board unanimously.

Florence County's Board Chair, Jeanette Bomberg said she has heard no opposition to the resolution from members of Florence County.

"What this means is we listen to our residents and we feel very strongly in the right to bear arms, the Second Amendment, she said.

This resolution will now be sent to the state capitol."This is what we should do is send a message to Madison, and it's going to be out to the other counties in the state of Wisconsin and you know they can do the same thing if they want, said Sheriff Miller.

The full resolution is in the related documents section.

Originally posted here:

Florence County becomes first Second Amendment Sanctuary County in Wisconsin -

Kaufman, Palo Pinto, and Stephens Counties Become Second Amendment Sanctuaries – The Texan

On a busy Tuesday, three county commissioners courts met and passed resolutions declaring themselves to be Second Amendment sanctuaries.

All passed the measure unanimously.

With the approval of resolutions in Kaufman, Stephens, and Palo Pinto, the number of such sanctuaries in Texas grows to a total of eleven.

The expanding list signals frustration with the increased discussion about stricter firearm regulations and gun control measures, including red flag laws, expanded background checks, and firearm confiscation.

Prior to Tuesday, Edwards, Hudspeth, Presidio, Mitchell, Hood, Parker, Smith, and Ellis counties had passed the pro-Second Amendment resolutions.

Get started today for free and become the most informed Texan you know after your first month, it's just $9.00.

In the resolutions, all counties have said that they will support the county sheriff and will not enforce any unconstitutional firearm restrictions.

As in many of the previous cases, all three sheriffs in the most recent counties to become sanctuaries voiced their support for the measure.

I dont actually get to sign resolutions, said Sheriff Will Holt of Stephens County, but I do want yall the court to know and (to put it) on record with the media and with the folks here that I support this resolution 100 percent.

Sheriff Brett McGuire of Palo Pinto County noted on a social media post how many people have expressed concerns about what certain politicians have spouted off hoping that they could get a sound-bite on the 5 oclock news.

Quite frankly, most of these politicians probably dont know the difference between an AR-15 and a leaf blower (and most of them have never used either one of them), said McGuire. Truth be told, the Sheriffs of Texas are some of your biggest supporters of the 2nd Amendment and the remaining rights afforded to you under the Constitution. You see, we have to be. And none of us would have taken this job if we werent.

The practical consequences of the Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions whether potential unconstitutional firearm restrictions will be protected against if current restrictions are left untouched has been questioned.

Regardless of how effective the resolutions might be in the future, those enacting them and those calling for them see the resolutions as a commitment to their belief in and defense of the constitutionally protected right for an individual to keep and bear arms.

A free bi-weekly commentary on current events by Konni Burton.

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Kaufman, Palo Pinto, and Stephens Counties Become Second Amendment Sanctuaries - The Texan

Readers sound off on New York Health Act, the Second Amendment and the Mets – New York Daily News

Manhattan: Re Warrens Rx, and ours (editorial, Nov. 7): A universal, state-funded health care plan would benefit every New Yorker. Surely the residents of the richest state in the richest nation on Earth can afford the right to health care that residents of every other advanced country already enjoy. As a board member of the Campaign for New York Health, I know that many studies conducted by us and others have shown that the taxes to fund New York Health Act would, in fact, be substantially less than what private insurance premiums, co-pays, and deductibles now cost us, and they would be fairer, based on ability to pay. We should demand that our Legislature take this opportunity to do something wonderful for the residents of this state and make universal, comprehensive, affordable health care available to all of us. Leonard Rodberg, research director, NY Metro Chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program

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Readers sound off on New York Health Act, the Second Amendment and the Mets - New York Daily News

The Nightmare Scenario: Trump Loses in 2020 and Refuses to Concede – Broadly

WASHINGTON Democrats pulled off an upset win to take back Kentuckys governorship earlier this month. So Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin tore a page out the Republicans playbook by insinuating voter fraud, refusing to concede, and claiming a number of irregularities cost him the election.

Call it the sore loser strategy, one that has become commonplace in the Trump era. Trump has long promoted conspiracy theories and made sweeping and baseless claims about voter fraud, which raises a question for 2020: What if President Trump loses and refuses to concede?

Experts fear at minimum it would further damage voters trust in democracy and at worst lead to a constitutional crisis.

There are reasons to be concerned, said Ned Foley, a constitutional law professor at the Ohio State University who specializes in the history of American contested elections. Trump has talked about voter fraud in a way thats not really reality based. That creates a reasonable fear that he might want to reject numerical results that are objectively [correct].

Trump has hinted before that hed reject any election loss.

In 2016, he repeatedly claimed a rigged election was being stolen from him, asked his supporters to monitor urban voting booths and suggested that the Second Amendment people take matters into their own hands if Hillary Clinton won the election. During the final debate, he refused to say hed accept the results if he lost. I will keep you in suspense, Trump said.

READ: Trump gave Democrats their made-for-TV moment on impeachment

Even in victory, Trump obsessively and falsely insisted that hed carried the popular vote as well if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally. He even set up a bogus, taxpayer-funded voter fraud commission to back up his claim. That commission turned up nothing and quietly disbanded after more than a year of controversy.

That didnt stop Trump.

In 2018, he claimed electoral corruption when GOP Senate nominee Martha McSally fell behind in Arizona after leading on election night and election fraud when now-Sen. Rick Scotts (R-Fla.) lead shrank as late votes were counted. Last August, Trump claimed he should have won New Hampshire in 2016 if thousands and thousands of people coming in from locations unknown hadnt shown up to vote.

In recent weeks hes called the House impeachment investigation a coup, accused his opponents of treason, and tweeted a comment made on Fox News by a controversial pastor that his removal from office would cause a Civil War like fracture.

Experts are worried about where Trump is headed. Duke University Professor Peter Feaver, a former member of the National Security Council under President George W. Bush, is concerned enough that hes organized a Nov. 25 conference to discuss best practices for administrations to simultaneously campaign to win reelection and prepare to hand over power in case you lose. Former Obama White House Chief of Staff Dennis McDonough and former Bush 43 White House Chief of Staff Joshua Bolten are the featured speakers.

Feaver said Trumps rhetoric is at the very least deeply irresponsible, and warned that foreign actors who seek to damage America will look to amplify any claims of fraud, as Russia did in 2016. His worst-case scenario is a genuine constitutional crisis where a states results are in dispute, either because of foreign interference or because one partys nominee simply refuses to concede and seeks to work outside the constitution to hold power.

READ: Trump Tried to Intimidate Marie Yovanovitch as She Testified About His Intimidation

Were not there yet and were not particularly close to it, but were at a stage where its reasonable to just say calm down, folks. This kind of rhetoric leads in a bad direction, Feaver warned.

Bevin, for his part, threatened to fight on, but he ended up quietly conceding after more than a week when a statewide recanvass of ballots showed almost no changes in the vote count. But rather than congratulating his opponent, he instead left with a parting shot, casting doubt on the democratic process.

If the people lose confidence in their ability to actually know that the vote they cast is the one that was tabulated for the person they intended it to be for we lose something in America, he said.

Trump, mysteriously, didnt go to war for Bevin the way he has for other allies. He declined to boost Bevins claims of fraud and instead argued without evidence that his last-minute campaign rally for the governor helped Bevin close a 19-point gap in the polls (no such deficit ever existed in public polling).

That may be because Bevin, as governor, cant help him directly the way that senators can. He also wasnt particularly close to Bevin, and his aversion to losers may have turned him off from helping more Trumps team notably left Bevin off their list of honorary reelection co-chairmen when they included almost every other Kentucky elected official. Or maybe he was just too busy worrying about impeachment.

But other conservative activists stepped up. A wealthy conservative Bevin ally funded robocalls in the state asking voters to report suspicious activity and suspected voter fraud. Judicial Watch President Tom Fittons tweet that Kentucky has weak voter id and dirty election rolls got more than 10,000 retweets. Right-wing Twitter activists and bots amplified an obvious fake account that claimed to have destroyed GOP ballots in the state.

Bevin conceded only after his party refused to stand with him. Republicans have a super-majority in both chambers of the state house and could have stepped in to overturn the election, but they didnt. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who Bevin ran against in 2014, said Bevin should concede if the recanvass didnt go his way.

But Bevin is widely disliked within his own party. Trump, meanwhile, has a firm grip on the Republican base in 2019.

The presidents margins in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan were all less than one percentage point when he won in 2016, and recent polls show tight contests there once again. Arizona, another potential tipping-point state, is notoriously slow at counting votes because of its reliance on mail-in ballots. It often takes days or even weeks to know whos won in close elections there.

The worst-case scenario would be a real constitutional crisis where a key states results are legitimately in question. Floridas 2000 election results are the closest modern analogy, but things could get even worse than that. If both sides dig in a state with split political control, there could be two different, competing certified election results one signed by the secretary of state and another backed by the state legislature.

The last time that happened was in the 1876 presidential election, which ended in controversy and a deal with the devil where Republican Rutherford B. Hayes traded away reconstruction for the White House. If a similar thing happens where a state submits two competing vote certificates, Congress determines which one they accept and if the Senate stays in GOP control and the House in Democrats hands, its unclear how theyd solve anything.

The kind of thing that happened in 2018 in Arizona could spin out of control and take a dispute all the way to Congress. If the Senate went one way and the House goes the other way it could get very ugly, said Foley.

If Trump has clearly lost and refuses to concede, its less likely that his whole party would rally around him to try to upend the election results. Bevin isnt the only recent case where this happened Alabama Republican Roy Moore and Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams are two other recent examples (though Abrams had much more legitimate complaints than the others).

But any claim from Trump that the election is rigged could prove unusually dangerous even if his party doesnt go along. Theres been an uptick in white supremacist violence in recent years and a spike around 2018 elections with the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting and the mail bombs a Trump supporter sent to a bevy of Democrats and media outlets.

If its close, where Trump refuses to accept results... the [white supremacist] movement will be riled up and the possibility for violence will be high, said Heidi Bierich, an expert in white supremacist violence at the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Cover: Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin, right, looks out at the crowd as President Donald Trump watches during a campaign rally in Lexington, Ky., Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

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The Nightmare Scenario: Trump Loses in 2020 and Refuses to Concede - Broadly

Chatting With The Speakers Of The 2nd Amendment Rally – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

2nd Amendment Rally

Washington D.C. -( On November 2nd at 1:00 PM, gun owners will descend on the lawn of the U.S. for the 2nd Amendment rally.

Gun rights advocates and gun celebrities will take the stage for speeches on the importance of the Second Amendment. This gathering isn't a protest. It is a chance for like-minded people to come together for fellowship and a chance to show those holding political office that gun owners do care about fighting against bad gun laws. We will get active in the political realm.

No one gun rights organization is putting on the one of a kind rally that is taking place on the Capitol lawn. It is an authentic grassroots movement, and people from all over the country are coming to take part in it. AmmoLand will be on-site, covering the speakers and events.

Maj Toure is taking a break from his campaign for Philadelphia City Council to talk about the importance of gun rights. Toure has a gift for electrifying crowds with his pointed improvised speeches. In Richmond, over the summer, Toure's Bacon's Rebellion speech inspired the group like no other speaker I have ever seen before.

Other speakers include Erich Pratt of Gun Owners of America. He will be speaking on the attack on the Second Amendment, and what gun owners can do to protect their rights. Pratt is the Executive Vice President of GOA and a lifelong gun-rights advocate.

YouTube stars will be speaking and meeting other gun owners. Eric Blandford of the YouTube channel Iraqveteran8888 will be giving a speech on why he sees the Second Amendment as critical for Americans. He will tell the crowd of his love for the country and why he paid his own way to speak at the rally.

The former Police officer and head of the D.C. Project Dianna Muller will also be up on stage speaking. Muller made waves when she told Congress in no uncertain terms that she will not comply with any unconstitutional laws dealing with modern sporting rifles. In the days since her testimony, her words of I will not comply became a rallying cry for gun rights activists around the country.

Another speaker will be Kevin Dixie of N.O.C. Firearms training. He will bring his unique perspective on gun ownership and the rights of gun owners. Kevin will not throw out talking points. His insight is unique to him.

That point is what I believe this rally will show. We all have different perspectives, and as Americans, we are born with the right to have those views. Without the Second Amendment, we can't safeguard our other rights.

We might not agree on everything. For transparency, I disagree with some of the speakers on issues like background checks and obeying laws I think violates my rights, but that is a part of being in a big tent group. You don't have to agree with everyone.

I had a chance to hold two live streams with some of the speakers of the rally. In the first stream Rob Pincus, Eric Blandford, Dianna Muller, and Maj Toure joined me. I hosted Jeff Knox, Cheryl Todd, Riley Bowman, and Chris Cheng on the second live stream. I was able to dig into the reasons for the rally and get my questions answered.

About John Crump

John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. He is the former CEO of Veritas Firearms, LLC and is the co-host of The Patriot News Podcast which can be found at John has written extensively on the patriot movement including 3%'ers, Oath Keepers, and Militias. In addition to the Patriot movement, John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and is currently working on a book on leftist deplatforming methods and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, on Facebook at realjohncrump, or at

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Chatting With The Speakers Of The 2nd Amendment Rally - AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Go Plinking. The Second Amendment Depends On It. – Shooting Illustrated

Photo courtesy of Ruger.

When was the last time you went plinking? You know, shooting for fun in the woods, on the farm or at a range, probably with a .22 LR? Its what got most of us started in shooting and led to a lifetime of enjoyment with firearms. I started shooting with a friends Remington Nylon 66 in Apache Black and chrome, a .22 LR rifle I still lust after. Not long afterward, I was introduced to wing shooting with a .410-Bore shotgun and soon had my own .22 LR rifle, a Winchester 69A bolt-action.

Although you can shoot paper targets, its more fun to shoot other targets when plinking, especially if the target moves or breaks. Way back when, city dumps were left uncovered and afforded an amazing variety of targets for a dedicated plinker. Tin cans, glass bottles and the occasional rat could be hunted and shot in the dump. These days, dumps are covered, shooting isnt allowed and we dont approve of shooting glass anywhere. However, aluminum cans, plastic water bottles and similar objects can be set out and used as targets. Clay birds make good targets, because they break and are biodegradable. Should you wish to spend a little money, there are a huge variety of small-bore steel targets, as well as plastic and rubber targets that can withstand a lot of hits.

Plinking is a terrific family activity and can be used as an opportunity to teach firearms safety, gun handling and marksmanship. Once the basics are mastered, a variety of targets and informal competition can be used to maintain interest and keep everyone entertained. Shooting is fun, and a family plinking session should always be structured as a fun and enjoyable activity. Theres a lot of personal responsibility involved in handling firearms safely, followed by cleaning up and leaving no trash after the shooting session.

I encourage you to introduce some folks to shooting by taking them plinking. Taking a young boy or girl shooting is a fun and rewarding experience for everyone involved, but dont forget to include adults, too. You probably know some people who have never been introduced to shooting and would appreciate an invitation. One of the best things we can do to preserve our sport and strengthen the Second Amendment is getting more people involved in shooting, and plinking is a terrific way to do it.

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Go Plinking. The Second Amendment Depends On It. - Shooting Illustrated

Why Don’t People and Vogue Celebrate the Second Amendment? – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Why Don't People and Vogue Celebrate the Second Amendment? iStock-1145895496

United States/United Kingdom -( we talk about the need for the NRA to get involved in cultural engagement in order to establish a pro-Second Amendment culture, some might question the need. After all, Hollywoods bias is well known, its arguably baked into the planning many Second Amendment supporters have. But this will matter a lot even if correction, especially if the Supreme Court case on New York City gun regulations ends up with a favorable ruling.

Why? Think of it this way: In America, while the Constitution protects our God-given rights, the people still rule. The First Amendment not only protects the right of Second Amendment supporters to defend our freedoms, it also protects the right of anti-Second Amendment extremists to encourage the American people to throw out pro-Second Amendment elected officials and replace them with anti-Second Amendment extremists. And we need not kid ourselves: Anti-Second Amendment extremists have been running an incredibly effective long game against our right to keep and bear arms, one that is a full-spectrum fight that includes wielding pop culture against us.

One way is through those magazines you often see in the supermarket, either in the checkout aisle, or where others are stored. Two that blatantly snubbed women who support the Second Amendment in issues celebrating women who made a difference are People and the British edition of Vogue, the latter guest-edited by Meghan Markle.

But in those two magazines, we saw three anti-Second Amendment presidential candidates, a prime minister who inflicted an injustice on thousands of people in her country (when people are wrongly punished via having their legally-owned property confiscated over a shooting they did not carry out, an injustice has taken place), and a major media mogul who supported the extreme anti-Second Amendment group March 4 Our Lives. Excluded? Women who support our right to keep and bear arms.

No talk of Dana Loesch, who has defended the Second Amendment despite becoming a target for vicious slurs and worse. What about Suzanna Gratia Hupp, who turned into an activist for our rights after her parents died in a mass shooting? There are countless other women who gave stood for the Second Amendment and have a great deal of accomplishment to their names, including former NRA President Marion Hammer, former NRA-ILA Executive Director Tanya Metaksa, and even NRA board members like Susan Howard or Sandra Froman (another former NRA President). People and Vogue dont even mention them.

You may wonder why we should care about a magazine from the supermarket checkout aisle, or a publication devoted to fashion. Well, when they are leveraged to attack our rights, we need to care. Worse, these magazines have wide circulation. Between its English and Spanish versions, People reaches almost four million people a week. The American edition of Vogue reaches about 1.2 million. American Rifleman comes in at 1.85 million, or less than half that of People. Vogue has a larger circulation than either American Hunter (929,000) or Americas First Freedom (roughly 630,000).

People, incidentally, will also get mentioned in other news outlets and it sits in the waiting rooms of doctors offices so the four million figure is probably low. Vogue also will crop up in those waiting rooms. American Rifleman? Not so much these days.

Finally, who reads those magazines? Well, much of that readership comes from the suburbs. One admitted success that anti-Second Amendment extremists like Michael Bloomberg have achieved is that they are doing well among suburban women the proverbial soccer moms precisely because they have them so scared of their kids school being the location of the next mass shooting that they dont consider the facts.

Plus, look at who often turns up as the subjects of those magazines Hollywoods A-list. Say what you will, but the writers are good storytellers, and while the actors and actresses are often against our rights, we should not dismiss their ability to help along a narrative that makes Second Amendment supporters resisting the injustices like those that Beto ORourke wishes to inflict on us as the villains.

People and Vogue will be two of the venues used to spread that narrative. The NRA and other pro-Second Amendment groups are going to need to adjust to this new type of threat, and that will require changes. It will be very important for Second Amendment supporters to be mindful of how their approach in defense of our freedoms comes across, and to use the right techniques to convince our fellow Americans that the narrative that anti-Second Amendment extremists are presenting is phonier than a red carpet smile, instead of reinforcing the phony narrative.

About Harold Hutchison

Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post,, and other national websites.

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Why Don't People and Vogue Celebrate the Second Amendment? - AmmoLand Shooting Sports News