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Old March 28, 2010, 09:40 AM   #1
LaserSpot
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Federal judge upholds D.C. gun regulations; appeal expected

Quote:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...032604527.html

... U.S. District Judge Ricardo M. Urbina found that the new regulations were crafted to make the streets safer and aren't so restrictive that they violate the Second Amendment guarantee of a person's right to own a gun for self-defense.

"It is beyond dispute that public safety is an important -- indeed, a compelling -- governmental interest," Urbina wrote.

The judge ruled that the District's handgun registration process, which requires owners to submit fingerprints and allow police to perform ballistics tests, is constitutional. He also upheld a city ban on most semiautomatic pistols...
Apparently Judge Urbina decided that they only have to allow revolvers in DC because the 2008 District of Columbia v. Heller case was about a .22 revolver. Semi-automatic pistols and "assault weapons" can still be banned.

I hope this will be appealed.
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Old March 28, 2010, 09:55 AM   #2
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Here are some additional problematic issues:

"The city requires that legally registered revolvers be kept unloaded and either disassembled or secured with trigger locks, unless the owner reasonably fears immediate harm by an intruder in the home."

"Each resident can register one pistol a month, and registrations expire after three years."


No doubt you will be forced to pay a fee for the registrations, thereby ensuring that fees are duly collected every three years. A "right" is not something that a citizen should be forced to periodically pay to enjoy.

I don't really see the fingerprinting issue to be that onerous, as most of us who currently have CCW permits must be fingerprinted to obtain them.

I suspect the decision will be appealed:

"Heller's attorney, Stephen P. Halbrook, said it is "highly likely" his client will appeal the decision. Halbrook said Urbina "uncritically accepted" the government's position and "simply ignored our evidence."

But I would be surprised if it were appealed before "McDonald v. Chicago" was announced by the SCOTUS.

I think it can reasonably be expected that cities such as D.C. and Chicago who are forced by the courts to change their laws and ordnances are going to "maliciously comply" by giving ground grudgingly and incrementally, until a tolerable line is defined by future court decisions. I would not expect a sudden and complete capitulation by them to adopt laws that might be acceptable to, say, the NRA.

Just MHO.
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Old March 28, 2010, 10:06 AM   #3
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Since the 2008 Heller case, David Souter retired, and Sonia Sotomayor was appointed by Obama. Is this going to make any difference in an appeal? Souter was a dissenter in that case.

When is the "McDonald v. Chicago" case likely to be decided?
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Old March 28, 2010, 10:08 AM   #4
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Can you imagine the consternation that would occur if Urbina had begrudgingly ruled that, while citizens indeed had a Right to Freedom of Religion, they must register as either Protestants, Baptists, Jews, or Episcopalians, etc., but that they can only register once each month and that the registrations expired every three years?
And a fee would be charged to re-register every three years?




McDonald v. Chicago should be announced this summer.
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Old March 28, 2010, 10:28 AM   #5
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Quote:
Since the 2008 Heller case, David Souter retired, and Sonia Sotomayor was appointed by Obama. Is this going to make any difference in an appeal? Souter was a dissenter in that case.

When is the "McDonald v. Chicago" case likely to be decided?
McDonald v. Chicago decision will likely be rendered public in June.

Sotomayor is a wild card at present. McDonald may be a litmus test for her.

Judge Urbina's ruling is simply not consistent with the exercise of a constitutional right. Can you imagine if he had said states and D.C. could limit your right to freedom of expression to once per month? After all, we need to hear from more of the people. Or that you could only attend religious services once per month?

Nor may the gov't permit a fee or tax to be charged to enjoy a right. If there is a right to keep a firearm in the home, then no fee or charge should be required for any paperwork. I posit that even a "use-based fee" for fingerprinting violates the Constitution.

Quote:
I think it can reasonably be expected that cities such as D.C. and Chicago ... are going to "maliciously comply"
Nice choice of terminology. And I agree.
If cities are forced to recind bans on firearms in the home and allow registration, I can forsee some city's "application form" being 2-4 pages long and asking a lot of invasive personal questions to discourage applicants.
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Old March 28, 2010, 12:01 PM   #6
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If cities are forced to recind bans on firearms in the home and allow registration, I can forsee some city's "application form" being 2-4 pages long and asking a lot of invasive personal questions to discourage applicants.
I'm sorry to say I have to concur. I wonder how long it's going to take cities such as Washington, D.C. and Chicago to come up with the idea of requiring those who wish to exercise our right to keep and bear arms to take expensive and infrequently offered classes, post "public safety" bonds, carry photographic identity cards, see their names published in leftist extremist "news" papers because the "public has a right to know who has those dangerous things," et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Firearms' two worst enemies are rust and politicians, not necessarily in that order.
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Old March 28, 2010, 12:09 PM   #7
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If cities are forced to recind bans on firearms in the home and allow registration, I can forsee some city's "application form" being 2-4 pages long and asking a lot of invasive personal questions to discourage applicants.
I think you're right, but two points come to mind.

First, in some places, a difficult application process is better than none at all, or a may-issue scheme that is discriminatory (as with Baltimore).

Second, it may be more prudent to attack the legality of parts of the application process one at a time. Is it legal to demand the Social Security number of the applicant? Are the fees excessive and/or unconstitutional taxes on a right?

Take DC's process for example. Aside from the usual disqualifiers, such as felonies and narcotics (and prostitution?), their registration scheme also denies firearms registration to anyone who "suffer[s] from a physical defect which would make it unsafe for you to possess and use a firearm safely and responsibly."

So, what determines what "physical defect" applies? The last time I checked, the handicapped are still citizens. They have the right, and perhaps a greater need, of self-defense.

That's an ADA lawsuit waiting to happen.

Let's not forget that there are other ways to attack bad gun laws than just on 2nd Amendment grounds.
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Old March 28, 2010, 12:52 PM   #8
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""Is it legal to demand the Social Security number of the applicant?""

My ss card says "NOT FOR IDENTIFICATION PURPOSES"

How did we ever let that get away?? Almost as bad as letting the 2A get waay!!
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Old March 28, 2010, 02:33 PM   #9
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Think that's bad?

Just wait! It gets better...

Under the new Obama Health Care Reform Act you will now get an "I'm a genuine U.S. Citizen smart-card", which will have all sorts of interesting data about you contained in a chip inside it. It will prove you are worthy of health care. You will carry your U.S. ID document wherever you go, and you will produce it on demand.

Just like in Europe! How about that?!

Just another incremental step towards assimilation, my friends. Resistance is futile! Join the collective, and you'll realize that (in the immortal words of Janis Joplin) ..."freedom is just another word for 'nothing left to lose'".
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Old March 30, 2010, 03:43 PM   #10
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one court has spoken, speech that hopefully will be rejected.

Heller v. District of Columbia, NRA's case challenging D.C.'s prohibitive firearm registration requirements, and its bans on "assault weapons" and "large capacity ammunition feeding devices." Mr. Heller was, of course, lead plaintiff in District of Columbia v. Heller, decided by the Supreme Court in 2008.

Judge Urbina rejected Heller's assertion that D.C.'s registration and gun and magazine bans should be subject to a "strict scrutiny" standard of review, under which they could survive only if they are justified by a compelling government interest, are narrowly tailored to achieve that interest, and are the least restrictive means of achieving that interest.

In support of that rejection, Urbina opined that in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) the Supreme Court "did not explicitly hold that the Second Amendment right is a fundamental right," and he adopted the argument of dissenting Justices in that case, that the Court's upholding of a law prohibiting possession of firearms by felons implied that the Court did not consider that laws infringing the right of law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms should be subject to a strict scrutiny standard of review.

------------------------------

The foregoing from an NRA alert. Is one to take it that Judge Urbina and some on the USSC cannot tell the difference, or do not know or care about the difference between felons and the law abiding? One wonders. One also wonders as to the exact text of D.C.'s Assault Weapons Ban, not to mention it's source. As to "large capacity ammunition feeding devices", wither comes the definition herein involved. What of that thing sometimes described as OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer or Maker). The Browning Hi-Power, for instasnce, ORIGINALLY and to this day comes with 13 round magazines, they being MANUFACTURERS STANDARD. The widely distributed CZ-75's standard magazine holds 16 rounds, and is again MANUFACTURERS STANDARD. Re the above, where is or where might there be this "compelling government interest", which I would think would be limited by the clear meaning of stipulations of/in The Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Seems once again, sad that D.C. v Heller was not settled in the clearest possibly terms, alibet without that plethora of "lawyers talk", that it was seemingly entumbed in or with.

If this matter has already been discussed, excuse the duplication.
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Old March 30, 2010, 07:05 PM   #11
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Is one to take it that Judge Urbina and some on the USSC cannot tell the difference, or do not know or care about the difference between felons and the law abiding?
The neo-aristocrats in Washington, D.C. have decided only criminals and their personal bodyguards own guns. Commoners need not apply.
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Old March 31, 2010, 09:18 AM   #12
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Quote:
In the 30-page opinion, Urbina said that the regulations aren't unduly burdensome and that the city provided "ample evidence of the ways" the registration requirements are intended to promote public safety. He noted, for instance, that authorities said the required ballistics tests will help them link bullets and shell casings found at crime scenes to the weapons used to fire them.
Hmm... revolvers don't scatter as many shell casings as semi's.

They actually upheld the trigger lock part? After this was in the holdings in Heller?

Quote:
3. The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to
self-defense) violate the Second Amendment. The District’s total ban
on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an
entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the
lawful purpose of self-defense. Under any of the standards of scru-
tiny the Court has applied to enumerated constitutional rights, this
prohibition—in the place where the importance of the lawful defense
of self, family, and property is most acute—would fail constitutional
muster. Similarly, the requirement that any lawful firearm in the
home be disassembled or bound by a trigger lock makes it impossible
for citizens to use arms for the core lawful purpose of self-defense and
is hence unconstitutional.
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Old March 31, 2010, 03:00 PM   #13
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They actually upheld the trigger lock part? After this was in the holdings in Heller?
Yep, somebody left a loose bolt in the crankcase. We should thank them for that.
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Old March 31, 2010, 03:18 PM   #14
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Say, sounds like a state's rights issue to me. And did you know that I'm required to register my car and to re-register it every two years and to have it inspected every year and on top of that, to get a permit to drive it in the first place and even to get insurance for it. This required insurance is killing me. Then you ought to hear about the taxes.

There weren't none of that for horses and wagons.
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Old March 31, 2010, 03:30 PM   #15
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Driving a car is a privilege, not a right. Owning a car does not necessarily mean you have permission to operate it on a public highway.
Being able to keep and bear arms is a constitutionally guaranteed individual right, per Heller vs. DC.

How are these remotely the same? I guess I just don't get the analogy.
Of course, I'm no scholar by any stretch of the imagination.
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Old March 31, 2010, 08:16 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Train
Say, sounds like a state's rights issue to me.
Huh?

When did the Federal District of Columbia become a State?

Regardless, the simple meaning of the 14th amendment is that no State has the authority to trample the freedoms and liberties of it's citizens. Even barring that, this is a Federal area. That means that the Bill of Rights (all of them) are fully protected.

As CowTowner pointed out (and so many of you keep telling me) driving is a privilege and therefore not protected, as is a civil right. So your analogy is logically false (it might carry some greater weight if you believed that your right to travel necessarily encompassed the personal means to effect travel, like your right to self defense encompasses the means to effect that defense).
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Old March 31, 2010, 08:49 PM   #17
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The only guarntee we have anymore is that are rights seemed to be subject to political whims and then we have to fight hard (legally) to get any portion of those rights observed.

The Constitution and the Bill of Rights seem to only get lip service support from politicians overall...

The founding principles of this country are very much being challenged. A very sad state of affairs for our nation and yet we still havent voted these clowns out of office.... Come next election we will vote new clowns in and we never seem to learn to vote for the common man or woman who only wishes to do whats right.
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Old March 31, 2010, 09:00 PM   #18
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Quote:
http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2010/...dc-handgun-ban
Last September, a Washington Post reporter, Christian Davenport, found out just how difficult it still is to get a handgun in D.C. even after the Supreme Court struck down the city's handgun ban. Excluding the price of the gun, the reporter spent $558.69 in various fees to get through the approval process. But that was only part of the cost. It took him "a total of 15 hours 50 minutes, four trips to the Metropolitan Police Department, two background checks, a set of fingerprints, a five-hour class and a 20-question multiple-choice exam."
Wow, they've made sure that no one will be buying a revolver who doesn't really, really want one. If the civil liberties protected by the first amendment were this well regulated, you would need a background check to buy a book; a laptop with an Internet connection would be as hard to get as a belt-fed heavy machine gun.
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Old March 31, 2010, 10:22 PM   #19
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LaserSpot Quote:
http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2010/...dc-handgun-ban
Last September, a Washington Post reporter, Christian Davenport, found out just how difficult it still is to get a handgun in D.C. even after the Supreme Court struck down the city's handgun ban. Excluding the price of the gun, the reporter spent $558.69 in various fees to get through the approval process. But that was only part of the cost. It took him "a total of 15 hours 50 minutes, four trips to the Metropolitan Police Department, two background checks, a set of fingerprints, a five-hour class and a 20-question multiple-choice exam."

-----------------------

A passing note regarding the above, btw, I had read this story too. The gentleman "invoking his constitutional rights" in the above described fiasco, a polite description for what it actually is/was, likely had some political influence too. Just think on the runaround Mr., Mrs. or Ms. Everyperson would have gotten from the monions of the law in the District of Columbia.
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Old April 1, 2010, 08:55 AM   #20
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The founding principles of this country were being challenged before 1800 and the practice of challenging basic rights, civil, human and otherwise, has continued down to this very day. You could even say it is an American tradition, in a manner of speaking. There are even people who think their idea of rights and morality empowers them to kill other people. Those are dangerous people and people to be afraid of.

Don't make another person afraid of you because that's the person who will kill you.
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Old April 1, 2010, 10:25 AM   #21
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Noxious restrictions are a well thought out strategy to negate gun ownership and carry.

Opponents to shall issue bills argue that if a bill is passed, shall issue should include fees, tests and location bans to such an extent to make carry or ownership very unattractive.

Banning malls, churchs, schools, theaters, restaurants, etc. - are all part of this. Expensive fees and tests - similar.

Those who support the property rights argument for carry bans at commmerical locations should realize they are being played as suckers by antigunner folk. Same with exhorbitant fees and tests.
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Old April 1, 2010, 11:38 AM   #22
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Quote:
Under the new Obama Health Care Reform Act you will now get an "I'm a genuine U.S. Citizen smart-card", which will have all sorts of interesting data about you contained in a chip inside it. It will prove you are worthy of health care. You will carry your U.S. ID document wherever you go, and you will produce it on demand.
I hadn't heard about this. It sounds implausible to me that this could be true, and more so that it could be true and so little discussed. But I could be wrong.

Can you verify these claims you are making, Doc?
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Old April 1, 2010, 11:51 AM   #23
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K -

It was discussed in reference to topics including illegal immigrants, illegal immigration, rights to health care (or not, depending on your status), (access to documenation such as driver's licenses, etc.) and how the state intends to separate one class of claimants from the other. It was a big deal to some who were concerned that illegal immigrants would qualify for health care, and that sufficient numbers of them would skew the stats (not to mention the costs). I'll scan for citations when I have time.
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Old April 1, 2010, 12:44 PM   #24
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K --

Some light reading on the topic(s).

Executive Summary: Health care bill denies national-backed insurance policies to illegal aliens in US. Illegals are sentenced to receiving health care the old-fashioned way: hospital emergency rooms and clinics. Proven to be expensive, for all parties except the patients. Immigration reform is next. Immigration reform includes amnesty for 12 million illegals. Amnesty displeases certain segments of the electorate. Political hand-wringing occurs. An answer is produced (from Chuck Shumer and friends): a biometric national ID card that will separate those who are citizens (and hence qualify for benefits) and those who are not. Coming soon, to a congressional debate near you! Background reports: (see Cato Report footnotes as well.)

http://liveshots.blogs.foxnews.com/2...al-immigrants/

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-20000758-38.html

http://www.secureidnews.com/2010/03/...-being-planned

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...Tabs%3Darticle

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/03/two-id-cards/

http://www.newsweek.com/id/233657

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa237.html

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcont...1.4c998a7.html

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010...igration-plan/

Doc
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Old April 1, 2010, 01:07 PM   #25
publius42
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Quote:
Say, sounds like a state's rights issue to me. And did you know that I'm required to register my car and to re-register it every two years and to have it inspected every year and on top of that, to get a permit to drive it in the first place and even to get insurance for it. This required insurance is killing me. Then you ought to hear about the taxes.
As noted, there are no state's rights in the federal District of Columbia, but your argument suffers from more than that basic flaw.

I have a farm truck. It's loaned out right now, but when it comes back, it is not going on the road again. Know what that means? I'll drive it around the property with no registration, no insurance, no taxes, and no problem with any law. Private property. Like a home, where the DC says they can tell you to have a trigger lock (can they tell me to keep the farm truck in neutral?) and you can't have a "dangerous and unusual" yet extremely commonplace semiautomatic handgun (can I only have a chainsaw motor in the truck?)

These are gun laws that apply in your home, not in public, so any analogy should be to my farm truck, not driving on government roads.
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