U.S. Constitution

‘Assault Weapons Ban Of 2017’ Legislation Introduced In U.S. Senate

You knew it was coming after the Nevada and Texas mass shootings. From the website of the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislation Action (NRA-ILA) Thursday:

Dianne Feinstein Wants to Ban Commonly Owned Semi-Autos, Again!

On Wednesday, Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced S. 2095, which she is calling the Assault Weapons Ban of 2017. The 125-page firearm prohibition fever dream is perhaps the most far-reaching gun ban ever introduced in Congress.

Subject to an exception for “grandfathered” firearms, the bill would prohibit AR-15s and dozens of other semi-automatic rifles by name (as well as their “variants” or “altered facsimiles”), and any semi-automatic rifle that could accept a detachable magazine and be equipped with a pistol grip, an adjustable or detachable stock, or a barrel shroud. And that’s just a partial list. “Pistol grip” would be defined as “a grip, a thumbhole stock, or any other characteristic that can function as a grip,” meaning the ban could implicate even traditional stocks or grips specifically designed to comply with existing state “assault weapon” laws.

Needless to say, semi-automatic shotguns and handguns would get similar treatment.

Also banned would be any magazine with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds or even any magazine that could be “readily restored, changed, or converted to accept” more than 10 rounds.

While Feinstein’s bill would graciously allow those who lawfully owned the newly-banned guns at the time of the law’s enactment to keep them, it would impose strict storage requirements any time the firearm was not actually in the owner’s hands or within arm’s reach. Violations would be punishable (of course) by imprisonment.

Owners of grandfathered “assault weapons” could also go to prison for allowing someone else to borrow or buy the firearm, unless the transfer was processed through a licensed firearms dealer. The dealer would be required to document the transaction and run a background check on the recipient.

Should lawful owners of the newly-banned firearms and magazines decide that the legal hazards of keeping them were too much, the bill would authorize the use of taxpayer dollars in the form of federal grants to establish programs to provide “compensation” for their surrender to the government.

This bill is nothing more than a rehash of Feinstein’s failed experiment in banning “assault weapons” and magazines over 10 rounds. Except this time, Feinstein would like to go even further in restricting law-abiding Americans’ access to firearms and magazines that are commonly owned for lawful self-defense.

The congressionally-mandated study of the federal “assault weapon ban” of 1994-2004 found that the ban had little, if any, impact on crime, in part because “the banned guns were never used in more than a modest fraction” of firearm related crime.

Don’t let Dianne Feinstein infringe on our Second Amendment rights with a policy that’s been proven to do nothing to stop crime. Please contact your U.S. Senators and encourage them to oppose S. 2095. You can contact your U.S. Senators by phone at (202) 224-3121, or click here to Take Action.


“Diane Feinstein on Gun ban in 1995 -Mr. and Mrs. America, turn your guns in!”
YouTube Video

Permission granted by the NRA-ILA to reproduce the material above.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke: Mainstream Media Now Democrats’ ‘Propaganda Wing’ As Trump Defends Nation

Let’s turn our attention north of the “Cheddar Curtain” now. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, Jr., appeared on FOX News Saturday morning and really let the mainstream media and opponents of strengthening the borders/homeland security have it. On the sparring between President Trump and the mainstream media, Sheriff Clarke informed FOX & Friends Weekend viewers:

Well, first of all, the mainstream media, The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC- they have become the propaganda wing of the Democrat Party and of leftist ideology. They abandoned their responsibility under the Constitution, their First Amendment protection. And we want them to have First Amendment protection but we don’t want it to be used against people whose political views they don’t agree with or that they oppose. They’re supposed to be a watchdog but instead what they have become, like I said, is an echo chamber for leftist ideology. So I think it’s good because the media has changed. And organizations like The New York Times, The Washington Post, and others do not realize that this is a new media age and every person in the United States now is their own reporter. And that is competition to them as well and they don’t like it.

On President’s Trump’s initiatives to protect the nation’s borders and strengthen homeland security, Clarke said:

First of all, I’m tired of these one-percenters like Mark Zuckerberg and others lecturing us about who we are. I know who I am, and most Americans know who we are. We are a sovereign nation. If you’re going to be a sovereign nation, you have to have borders and you have to protect those borders. Mark Zuckerberg has no idea of who’s coming into this country and what it takes to vet those individuals. I as a law enforcement officer- I’m in my 39th year- we do a lot of vetting of people. I know how it’s done. But you have to have databases with which to compare. So you take a name, someone coming in as a refugee. And we’re not talking about the kids. I’m tired of all this crocodile tears about the kids, the poor kids coming. We’re not talking that. We’re talking about abled-bodied, grown men, fighting-age, that should be back in Syria and back in the Middle East fighting for their country coming over to the United States to spread jihad. So that’s who we’re talking about. But if you don’t have a database, someone gives you a name, and you don’t have a database in Syria, because they don’t have the record systems and the databases like we have with people- you have nothing to compare it to. So they give you a name and you look and there’s nothing there. That doesn’t mean that they’re safe to come in. So Donald Trump is right on this. And I hope that the rest of the people in Washington, D.C., realize that this thing is a mess and we have to get our arms around it. And at least President Donald Trump recognizes that…

What’s interesting is former President Barack Obama said that they were already doing it. So if he said- and they weren’t- but if he said they were already doing it, and now President Donald Trump comes along and says we’re doing it and now these same people who said, “Well, hey, Barack Obama’s taking care of it”- these same people are now being critical of it. The hypocrisy of this is profound. But, President Donald Trump understands that his first obligation is to defend and protect American citizens, and defend and protect America from foreign threats. That is his first and most important obligation. So he is rising up to that. And people should be proud of that. It makes me feel more secure that finally, somebody understands that the defense of this nation is government’s number one priority.


“Sheriff Clarke: Mainstream Media Has Abandoned Its Constitutional Responsibility”
FOX News Video

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Chicago Restrictions To Gun Ranges Ruled Unconstitutional

The City of Chicago lost yet another court battle versus gun “rights.” From a news release yesterday on the website of the Second Amendment Foundation:

A three-judge panel of the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals today handed the Second Amendment Foundation a victory in its challenge of firearms regulations in the City of Chicago, striking down a zoning provision, reversing an earlier ruling that upheld “distancing” restrictions for gun ranges, and reversing an earlier ruling that upheld certain age restrictions.

Writing for the court, Judge Diane S. Sykes noted, “To justify these barriers, the City raised only speculative claims of harm to public health and safety. That’s not nearly enough to survive the heightened scrutiny that applies to burdens on Second Amendment rights.”

“We are delighted with the outcome of this lengthy case,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “The extremes to which the city has gone in an attempt to narrow its compliance with the Supreme Court ruling in McDonald v. City of Chicago can only be described as incredible stubbornness. In the 6½ years since the high court ruling in our McDonald case, the city has had ample opportunity to modify its regulations. Instead, Chicago has resisted reasonableness.

“We had already sued Chicago successfully to knock down its outright ban on gun ranges within the city,” he recalled. “Then they adopted new regulations that included the zoning, distancing and age restrictions that we contested in this legal action, known as ‘Ezell II.’

“The city tried to severely limit where shooting ranges could be located, and they failed,” he continued. “The city put up arguments about the potential for gun theft, fire hazards and airborne lead contamination, and they failed. Even the judge’s opinion today noted that the city had ‘produced no evidentiary support for these claims beyond the speculative testimony of three city officials.’ This nonsense has got to stop

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The “nonsense” Gottlieb speaks of is well-documented on the Chicago Tribune website this morning. From the Associated Press article:

Chicago has suffered a string of defeats in its efforts to restrict guns, which top officials have cited as a major reason for a sharp rise of violence in the city.

The U.S. Supreme Court forced the city to rewrite its firearms ordinance in June 2010, which had banned the ownership of guns in the city. In response, the city came up with an ordinance outlawing the sale of firearms in the city.

A judge ruled in 2014 the city’s ban on gun shops violated the Constitution.

Chicago imposed a blanket ban on shooting ranges in 2010. The Court of Appeals struck down the ban in 2011, prompting the city council to pass ordinances accomplishing the same thing. The Second Amendment Foundation and others took the city to court over the ordinances in 2014.

Sounds like City Hall could really use a refresher course on the U.S. Constitution.

Plus, how much more of the taxpayer dime was blown on this latest anti-Bill of Rights legal activity?

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Associated Press. “Appeals court rules restrictions to gun-ranges in Chicago are unconstitutional.” Chicago Tribune. 19 Jan. 2017. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-chicago-gun-range-restrictions-20170118-story.html). 19 Jan. 2017.

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Quote For The Week

“If it were to be asked, What is the most sacred duty and the greatest source of security in a Republic? the answer would be, An inviolable respect for the Constitution and Laws- the first growing out of the last. It is by this, in a great degree, that the rich and powerful are to be restrained from enterprises against the common liberty- operated upon by the influence of a general sentiment, by their interest in the principle, and by the obstacles which the habit it produces erects against innovation and encroachment. It is by this, in a still greater degree, that caballers, intriguers, and demagogues are prevented from climbing on the shoulders of faction to the tempting seats of usurpation and tyranny.

Were it not that it might require too lengthy a discussion, it would not be difficult to demonstrate, that a large and well organized Republic can scarcely lose its liberty from any other cause than that of anarchy, to which a contempt of the laws is the high road.

But, without entering into so wide a field, it is sufficient to present to your view a more simple and a more obvious truth, which is this- that a sacred respect for the constitutional law is the vital principle, the sustaining energy of a free government.”

-Alexander Hamilton (American statesman and Founding Father. 1755 or 1757-1804), in “Tully No. III,” August 28, 1794

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Monday, October 17th, 2016 Government, Legal, Quote For The Week 2 Comments

Quotes For The Week

“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.”

-U.S. Constitution, Amendment II

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the militia shall consist of every able-bodied male citizen of the respective States, Territories, and the District of Columbia, and every able-bodied male of foreign birth who has declared his intention to become a citizen, who is more than eighteen and less than forty-five years of age, and shall be divided into two classes-the organized militia, to be known as the National Guard of the State, Territory, or District of Columbia, or by such other designations as may be given them by the laws of the respective States or Territories, and the remainder to be known as the Reserve Militia…”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

-Militia Act of 1903 (also known as “The Efficiency in Militia Act of 1903” and “Dick Act”)

Ҥ311. Militia: composition and classes

(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are-
(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

-U.S. Code (consolidation and codification by subject matter of the general and permanent laws of the United States), Title 10, Chapter 13, Section 311

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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SP Intel Report- October 27, 2015

Chicago

Saw the following on Channel 7 news earlier today:


“Racially-Charged Sign Posted At Pilsen Coffee Shop”
ABC7 Video

If this is for real, I can only imagine the outrage if the sign had said “Black People Out…” or “Mexican People Out…” But since it targeted “White People” in America of 2015, it’s okay then (wink).

I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict that as the U.S. financial crash draws closer, racial violence will pick up. Wish it weren’t so, but history will probably rhyme here.

National

President Obama’s in town this raining evening. Earlier Tuesday, he spoke at the 122nd Annual Meeting of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. Not surprisingly, gun control was on the agenda. From a transcript of the speech:

You know exactly why someone all too often should want to own a gun. It’s a powerful instrument. It helps you do a dangerous job. It’s something that has to be used with care. Many of you, like millions of law-abiding Americans, are sportsmen or hunters, or you’ve got a firearm in your home for protection. But you also know the fact is that it’s too easy for criminals to buy guns — and that makes your already dangerous job far more dangerous than it should be. (Applause.)

And it makes the communities so fearful that it’s harder for them to be a good partner with you, because the streets become abandoned, and parents start not being as involved in monitoring what’s taking place. You have a risk of being shot. It’s risky enough responding to a domestic violence call or a burglary in progress without having to wonder if the suspect is armed to the teeth, maybe has better weapons than you do. And the fact is that in states with high gun ownership, police officers are three times more likely to be murdered than in states with low gun ownership. That is a fact. So you know that more guns on the streets do not make you or your communities safer. (Applause.)

Now, one of the benefits of being President is you travel all around the country, and I do know that there is a difference in what firearms mean and how they are handled in rural communities and in urban settings. And we’ve got to take into account some of the regional differences that are involved. But I do want to emphasize this is not just an issue for cities.

There are those who criticize any gun safety reforms by pointing to my hometown as an example. They say, well, look, Chicago had a spike in homicides this year, they’ve got gun safety laws, so this must be proof that tougher gun safety laws don’t help, maybe make things worse. The problem with that argument, as the Chicago Police Department will tell you, is that 60 percent of guns recovered in crimes come from out of state. You’ve just got to hop across the border. As I said before, it is easier for a lot of young people in this city and in some of your communities to buy a gun than buy a book. It is easier in some communities to find a gun than it is to find some fresh vegetables at a supermarket. (Applause.) That’s just a fact.

And that’s why the IACP and the overwhelming majority of the American people — Democrat and Republican — believe we should require national criminal background checks for anybody who wants to purchase a gun. (Applause.) That’s why the IACP believes we shouldn’t sell military-style assault weapons to civilians. They don’t need them. (Applause.) They don’t need them to hunt a deer. It’s just a simple proposition — cops should not be out-armed by the criminals that they’re pursuing. (Applause.)

As I said, earlier this afternoon I met with families of police officers who gave their lives in the line of duty. And I met with families of children here in Chicago who were taken from us by gun violence. And I do this too often, meeting with grieving families. I’m proud to be able to express to them that the entire country cares about them — (applause) — and that they’re in our thoughts and prayers, and that we’re sorry for their loss. But I have to tell you — and I know some of you have heard my frustration in the past here — when I meet with these families I can’t honestly tell them that our country has done everything we could to keep this from happening again — from seeing another officer shot down, from seeing another innocent bystander suffer from a gunshot wound. And that’s a travesty.

Thirty-two cops have been shot and killed this year. At least a dozen children have been shot and killed this month. About 400,000 Americans have been shot and killed by guns since 9/11 — 400,000. Just to give you a sense of perspective, since 9/11, fewer than 100 Americans have been murdered by terrorists on American soil — 400,000 have been killed by gun violence. That’s like losing the entire population of Cleveland or Minneapolis over the past 14 years.

And I refuse to accept the notion that we couldn’t have prevented some of those murders, some of those suicides, kept more families whole — (applause) — protected more officers if we had passed some common-sense laws. (Applause.)

So, look, I understand we won’t all agree on this issue. But it’s time to be honest — fewer gun safety laws don’t mean more freedom, they mean more danger. Certainly more danger to police, more fallen officers, more grieving families, more Americans terrified that they or their loved ones could be next. So I’m going to keep calling on the folks in Congress to change the way that they think about gun safety. And if they don’t, I’m going to keep on calling on Americans to change the folks in Congress until they get it right. (Applause.)

And please do not — some of you watching certain television stations or listening to certain radio programs, please do not believe this notion that somehow I’m out to take everybody’s guns away. Every time a mass shooting happens, one of the saddest ironies is that suddenly the purchase of firearms and ammunition jumps up because folks are scared into thinking that Obama is going to use this as an excuse to take away our Second Amendment rights. Nobody is doing that. We’re talking about common-sense measures to make sure criminals don’t get them; to make sure background checks work; to make sure that — (applause) — to make sure that we’re protecting ourselves…

A couple of thoughts here:

•In a nutshell, Barack Obama is trying to muster support from these police chiefs for his gun control initiatives.

• I worked alongside a number of police chiefs back when I was in local government. Keep in mind that many of them are political hires. It would be somewhat harsh to say they are not the police, but I suspect many of them have much more in common with their municipal masters than the beat cop at that stage in their career. If their “clout” is anti-gun, there’s a pretty good chance the police chief is as well (or at least that will be their public stance on the issue). Of course, there are always exceptions.

• Notice how “gun safety” is substituted for “gun control” in the speech. I learned a long time ago to be wary of people who get their jollies off playing around with words like this.

• Obama’s ongoing push for gun control mirrors that of the larger movement in America, which seeks to chip away at the Second Amendment piece by piece. Mass shootings embolden the effort. And the end justifies the means in these peoples’ minds. Compromise is not part of their vocabulary. Which leaves pro-Bill of Rights supporters no other alternative but to deal with them along the lines of that old Arab parable:

“If the camel once gets his nose in the tent, his body will soon follow.”

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Beware Of Uncle Sam?

Since the time we were subjects of the English monarchy, plenty of Americans haven’t been big fans of government.

Particularly fans of Big Government.

From the folks over at the Gallup website Monday:

Almost half of Americans, 49%, say the federal government poses “an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens,” similar to what was found in previous surveys conducted over the last five years. When this question was first asked in 2003, less than a third of Americans held this attitude

Overall, Americans who agree that the government is an immediate threat tend to respond with very general complaints echoing the theme that the federal government is too big and too powerful, and that it has too many laws. They also cite nonspecific allegations that the government violates freedoms and civil liberties, and that there is too much government in people’s private lives.

The most frequently mentioned specific threats involve gun control laws and violations of the Second Amendment to the Constitution…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

On September 9, the U.K.-headquartered internet-based market research firm YouGov reported on their website that based on recent research:

29% of Americans could imagine a situation in which they would support the military seizing control of the federal government…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

That percentage grew under the following scenario:

The proportion of the country that would support a military takeover increases when people are asked whether they would hypothetically support the military stepping in to take control from a civilian government which is beginning to violate the constitution. 43% of Americans would support the military stepping in while 29% would be opposed…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Long-time readers of Survival And Prosperity might remember me blogging about a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind survey asking about a Second American Revolution that was conducted in April 2013. I wrote on May 3, 2013:

Armed revolution in the United States.

I heard it being talked about yesterday in the mainstream media after the release of some new poll findings, so I decided to go to the source this morning. From a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind news release Wednesday, concerning their most recent national survey of 863 registered U.S. voters from April 22 through April 28, 2013:

The poll finds that 29 percent of Americans think that an armed revolution in order to protect liberties might be necessary in the next few years, with another five percent unsure. However, these beliefs are conditional on party. Just 18 percent of Democrats think an armed revolution may be necessary, as opposed to 44 percent of Republicans and 27 percent of independents…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Funny how that “29 percent” number pops up again.

Interesting times we’re living in, huh?

Two things come to mind here:

• Uncle Sam knows darn well about these polls/surveys
• Such views could be the real reason behind all those military training exercises in America’s big cities lately

Or maybe not.

One last point. As an American citizen and former civil servant at the federal level of government, I’ve always taken pride in our (relatively) peaceful transfer of political power since the founding of the Republic.

Here’s hoping that continues to be the case.

You can read that Gallup piece in its entirety on their website here. The same goes for that YouGov article here. Insightful and disturbing stuff.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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