The right to bear arms might be under attack here in America–but in the United Kingdom, police are trying to do something even more ridiculous: they’re attempting to ban knives.
The British police have recently joined forces with liberal grassroots activists in the UK, launching the “Save a Life–Surrender Your Knife” program. Knife crime has been climbing recently in major UK cities like London.
The program involved several weeks of “amnesty” for “pointed knives.” Civilians can turn in these apparently dangerous weapons at their local police station in exchange for “amnesty,” apparently, even though knives (rounded or pointed) aren’t illegal in the United Kingdom.
In the last few months of 2014, when the program was running, about 800 knives had been handed in across the country–”including swords, machetes, and commando knives,” according to the Lancashire Police Department.
Incidentally, the knife violence rate in the United Kingdom is about double the rate of gun violence in the United States. Possibly because Americans haven’t yet been asked to throw away their right to self-defense in a bin at the police station.
Read more at Citizen-Action.com…
The Brady Campaign, (formerly Handgun Control, Inc.) enjoying the recent influx of cash into antigun causes by megabucks donors, has in the last few years resurrected the strike suit tactics, apparently hoping the passage of time and outrage over the acts of a handful of high profile criminals will change their luck. Among their latest targets are businesses who advertise or sell products online, not coincidentally the same type of businesses in the crosshairs of Barack Obama’s failed gun control push of 2013. While Brady’s efforts have resulted in repeated failure from a legal standpoint (see here, here, and here, for example), they seem content to use these tactics as a vehicle to spread their propaganda, attempt to smear members of industry, and maybe hit pay dirt with an activist like-minded judge.
Yet the efforts are not without cost, and not just to the innocent business persons dragged into court. Besides trifling with the legal system, they exploit people whose lives have been touched by crime and who may or may not understand Brady’s larger agenda or the limitations of its legal theories. Now, a Brady-backed suit has resulted in a judgment of over $200,000 against the parents of a victim who was killed in the movie theatre attack in Aurora, Colorado, in July 2012.
The suit was brought against online merchants who sold the perpetrator various items he used in his crime. To get around the PLCAA, (“Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act“) the plaintiffs claimed that law was unconstitutional or that its various exceptions applied to their case.
In a concise 19-page opinion dismissing the lawsuit, the court repeatedly cited precedent that directly contradicted the suit’s claims. Ultimately, the court simply refused the plaintiffs’ request to rewrite settled law to their liking. “To grant such relief this court must conduct hearings and make policy decisions that are within the authority of the political branches of government responsive to the people under our constitutional structure of representative government,” Judge Richard P. Matsch wrote. “The defendants’ motions to dismiss must be granted because this court does not have the authority to grant the relief requested.”
The court was even more direct in an opinion released last week awarding the defendants defense costs and attorneys’ fees. “It is apparent that this case was filed to pursue the political purposes of the Brady Center,” Judge Matsch stated, “and, given the failure to present any cognizable legal claim, bringing these defendants into the Colorado court where the prosecution of James Holmes was proceeding appears to be more of an opportunity to propagandize the public and stigmatize the defendants than to obtain a court order which counsel should have known would be outside the authority of this court.”
When all was said and done, the plaintiffs were ordered to pay the various defendants a total of $203,001.86. Just who will ultimately foot the bill is unknown, but Judge Matsch also noted the close relationship of the named plaintiffs to the Brady Campaign itself. Brady, having exploited the plaintiffs’ tragic circumstances for the group’s own political agenda, hopefully won’t leave the plaintiffs on the financial hook as well.
Read more at NRA-ILA…
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed two bills loosening his state’s gun laws on Wednesday, including one ending the state’s 48-hour waiting period for handgun purchases.
The timing of the bill signing comes amid a renewed debate over gun control and race relations after the fatal shootings at a Charleston, S.C., black church on June 17; a white man faces multiple murder charges.
But the measures on Walker’s desk predated the massacre and passed earlier this month in the GOP-majority Legislature with bipartisan support. The second measure would allow off-duty, retired and out-of-state police officers to carry firearms on school grounds.
Walker, a likely Republican presidential candidate, said the bill-signing event was scheduled on June 11. After June 30, the measures would have become law without his signature.
Read more at FoxNews.com…
Some background: Most waiting period laws for firearm purchase were created at the insistence of the lobbying group Handgun Control Inc. (now renamed the Brady Campaign, to hide from their previous failures). At the time HCI demanded waiting periods, while the NRA argued against waiting periods, but for a comprehensive background check. HCI won and waiting periods without background checks was implemented. Without the background checks the waiting period did nothing to keep guns out the hands of bad people and simply annoyed good people. Eventually the NRA’s comprehensive background check was implemented and of course HCI claimed credit for it.
“If Congress had passed some common-sense gun safety reforms after Newtown,” President Obama said during a visit to San Francisco on Friday, “we don’t know if it would have prevented what happened in Charleston.” Actually, we do know: Had the bill to which Obama was referring been enacted, it would not have done anything to prevent Dylann Roof from murdering nine people at Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church on Wednesday night. But as is usually the case with the policies that gun controllers push in response to horrendous crimes like this one, logic is optional.
Obama was talking about legislation proposed following the December 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut—in particular, “reforms that 90 percent of the American people supported,” meaning expansion of the background check requirement for gun buyers to include sales that do not involve federally licensed dealers. But as CNN reported the day of Obama’s remarks, Roof bought the .45-caliber Glock Model 41 handgun he used in the church attack from a Charleston gun store in April, shortly after his 21st birthday (which was on April 3), with money his father had given him as a present. That means he passed a background check.
Under the Gun Control Act of 1968, which bans firearm sales to someone who “is under indictment for, or has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year” (i.e., a felony). Based on the Times report, The Washington Post‘s Jeff Guo claimed (as J.D. Tuccille noted here on Friday) that “because of his criminal record, Roof would not have been able to buy a gun from a store.” Clearly that’s not true, since Roof did buy a gun from a store. And if A.P. and the Observer are right that Roof was charged with a misdemeanor rather than a felony, his drug arrest would not have barred him from buying a gun, even assuming that the information would have made its way into the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) in the month or so between the arrest and the purchase.
Read more at Reason.com…
President Obama and other black leaders called for tighter access to firearms last week in reaction to the mass shooting at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, but not Kenn Blanchard.
A former Marine, Christian pastor and author of “Black Man with a Gun,” Mr. Blanchard wants more black people to protect themselves by embracing the Second Amendment and learning to use firearms, instead of reflexively siding with the gun control movement.
“It hit too close to home, being a former pastor of a church, knowing that you’re almost a sitting duck because you open your church up to the herding, you don’t question people, you don’t have adequate security,” said Mr. Blanchard, who hosts a podcast through his website, BlackManWithAGun.com.
“Biblically, it’s kind of out of context, too,” he said. “If you’re going to be the shepherd of a flock — the shepherd had a really big stick. And the shepherd protected the sheep from the wolf and the bear. And the sheep felt safe because the shepherd was armed.”
Read more at The Washington Times…
Bishop E. W. Jackson, during an interview on Fox News, called for pastors to carry firearms in the church.
“If someone comes into my church to hurt my members I have an absolute obligation to defend them, to protect them,” said Jackson.
This notion isn’t without some merit. Concealed carriers inside of churches have stopped armed criminals before. Jackson’s advice comes as President Barack Obama gave a speech yesterday after the shooting, which seem to have many thinking he was gearing up for a push on new gun control laws.
“At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries,” Obama said. “It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency. And it is in our power to do something about it, he also added.”
Bishop Jackson is a GOP politician, an ordained bishop, and was a Corporal in the United States Marine Corps from 1970 – 73.
Read more at The Political Insider…