Lawyers, Guns & Money: Challenge to Chicago Law Could Restore Economic Liberty

Still on deadline, so not much from me this week. But here’s fellow Dallasite and Reasonoid Jacob Sullum on how the challenge to Chicago’s oppressive anti-gun laws could be a boon for economic liberty.

The right to weapons was one of the liberties frequently cited by the 14th Amendment’s backers, since disarmed blacks were defenseless against attacks by Klansmen and local officials. As reflected in post–Civil War legislation that the amendment was intended to reinforce, its supporters also were concerned about economic liberty: the right to own and exchange property, make and enforce contracts, and work in the occupation of one’s choice—all freedoms the Southern states tried to deny former slaves.

French Cinema or Kabuki Theater? Eh, Gun Buyback is Back

I didn’t realize it was already happening again. But Big Bob say yes.

Flashback to the last buyback and our weird video here.

(Amanda Warr did a great job, but I hate seeing myself on video. Unless I’m naked.)

Full story behind the video here.

Toy Gun Control for the Nerf Herd

A story today in the Dallas Morning News about police having confrontations with two people who were playing with toy guns or pellet guns.


red_ryder_adHere’s the thing — and I mentioned it first in my feature for D Magazine about the growing nanny state in Dallas — kids have always played with toy guns, and they’ve always had toy guns that look real. And yet we didn’t have this problem 20, 30 or 50 years ago of police drawing down on them, or the public freaking out when they see someone with a gun.

What’s changed?

(EDIT/CLARIFICATION: I’m speaking more here about the incidents involving kids where the kid gets shot. Happens about twice a year nationally. These two Dallas incidents in the story linked were just jumping off points for the discussion. Thanks to Keith for correcting my course.)

I think the problem is police are too quick to draw down on anyone holding a gun — which isn’t a crime in itself — and people have been programmed to automatically and irrationally fear anyone who has something that looks like a gun. Yes, officer safety is important, but not as important as the rights and lives of those they’re sworn to protect and serve. Irrational fear leads to irrational actions.

And boy, have we gotten a lot more irrational about inanimate objects.

toyguns11Oh, and for those who say that toy guns today look real where toy guns from the 1950s and 1960s didn’t look real, here’s a sampling of toy guns from the 1960s, and here’s some toy guns from the 1950s.

Awesome ad for the Dick Tracy .38 snub and Tommy Gun.

‘Naive’ Is Believing The Words and Not the Record, Steve

The untalented flotsam at the Dallas Morning News calls gun owners “sheep.”

From what I see, they are one of the most naive, most easily manipulated political groups in the country.

Naive? Why?

There’s no evidence the Obama administration has any major shift in gun laws in mind.

Oh really?

“The Obama administration will seek to reinstate the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004 during the Bush administration, Attorney General Eric Holder said.” ABC News Link

Mr. Obama hasn’t made any move yet to enact gun control only because he doesn’t have the votes. Even he admits this. He and Joe Biden know the losses the Democrat Party suffered when they enacted the first massive gun ban in the early 1990s.

But here’s a sampling of Mr. Obama’s past quotes and positions in favor of gun control, showing if he had the votes and could sell it, Obama would ban guns in a heartbeat.


Mr. Obama supports the proposed HR 45 bill that would enact draconian gun control.

He is in favor of “closing” the non-existent “gun show loophole” — despite the fact that every firearms dealer at any gun show must conduct a full background check on every buyer.

Mr. Obama opposes concealed carry.

“I am not in favor of concealed weapons,” Obama said. “I think that creates a potential atmosphere where more innocent people could (get shot during) altercations.” Link

Obama’s pro gun control position from

His attorney general, Eric Holder — who never met an anti-gun law he didn’t support — wants to re-enact the so-called “Assault Weapons” ban. Obama is on the record as supporting the ban’s renewal. Link

The ban on “armor piercing bullets” that Obama supports is a Trojan Horse.

Obama voted for an amendment by longtime ammunition ban advocate Sen. Edward Kennedy (S. Amdt. 1615 to S. 397, Vote No. 217, July 29, 2005), which would have fundamentally changed the federal “armor piercing ammunition” law (18 U.S.C. ‘ 922(a)(7)), by banning any bullet that “may be used in a handgun and that the Attorney General determines… to be capable of penetrating body armor” that “meets minimum standards for the protection of law enforcement officers.”

Federal law currently bans bullets as “armor piercing” based upon the metals used in their construction, such as those made of steel and those that have heavy jackets. (18 U.S.C. ‘ 921(a)(17)). The Kennedy amendment would have fundamentally changed the law to add a ban on bullets on the basis of whether they penetrate the “minimum” level of body armor, regardless of the bullets’ construction or the purposes for which they were designed (e.g., hunting).

Many bullets designed and intended for use in rifles (including hunting rifles) have, over the years, been used in special-purpose hunting and target handguns, thus they “may be used in a handgun.”

The “minimum” level of body armor, Type I, only protects against the lowest-powered handgun cartridges. Any center-fire rifle used for hunting, target shooting, or any other purpose, and many handguns used for the same purposes, are capable of penetrating Type I armor, regardless of the design of the bullet.

“I’m consistently on record and will continue to be on record as opposing concealed carry.”

Chicago Tribune, 4/27/04

“I think it’s a scandal that this president (Bush) did not authorize a renewal of the assault weapons ban.”

Illinois Senate Debate #3: Barack Obama vs. Alan Keyes, 10/21/04

“I believe in keeping guns out of our inner cities and that our leaders must say so in the face of the gun manufacturers lobby.”

The Audacity of Hope, by Barack Obama, 2006

“I think that local jurisdictions have the capability to institute their own gun laws.”, 2/15/08

“There was a discussion today about a law that has just passed in California that allows micro-tracing of bullets that have been discharged in a crime so that they can immediately be traced,” he said. “This is something that California has passed over the strong objections of the NRA…That’s the kind of common sense gun law that gun owners as well as victims of gun violence can get behind.”

Baltimore Feb. 15, 2008


So what’s really naive? Worrying that a superficial man with a long track record of supporting and voting for gun control might, indeed, try to force more gun control on us while saying he won’t?

Or is naive just taking the word of a politician who says, “Trust me”?

(h/t Tom E.)

Thursday Roundup: See how I’m not punching him?

  • What’s that word? Oh yeah, irony. The first school named in this story of how high school seniors are so indoctrinated to fear the humorless Powers That Be that they don’t play senior pranks anymore is Liberty High School in Frisco. Sorta surprised they didn’t quote the principal at Oceania High School.
  • And speaking of Oceania schools — DISD is ensuring equality in education by bringing every school down to the lowest common denominator. Viva égalité!
  • Something smells seriously fishy here. Who needs seven night vision scopes for hunting? Who needs one night vision scope for hunting anything but the most dangerous game? And who spends an average of $7,000 on a night vision scope in the first place? Even the most advanced ones don’t run that much.
  • You know, it’s stupid enough that anyone would deny that the email has a racist tinge – referring to the White House as the black house. But I’m even more offended at the stupidity of thinking a proposed state bill in Austin originated with Mr. Obama, and with the idea of a $50 tax on gun purchases.

Monday Roundup: Out, Out Damn Spot!

  • I’m glad they got a voice of reason into this look at how the Lege is stomping all over both parental and teenager rights. Because who cares more about a kid — a mere parent, or some semi-pro political tool? (And what a surprise to find State Sen. John Carona‘s fat fingerprints all over the worst of the bills.) Of course, the unintentional (or is it?) effect of all this is to raise up young adults who think their every decision as an adult is subject to permission from elected. Which, now that I mention it
  • I missed something in Tanya Eiserer’s story on Friday that Grits certainly didn’t miss: “Eiserer’s story concludes with an especially fascinating account that suggests Sundquist’s lying wasn’t just malfeasance by a single officer but actually part of a pattern attributed to his entire unit.”
  • This is going to be fun. After all, if the product isn’t intended to cross state lines in manufacture, sale or us, how can the federal government justify regulating it under the interstate commerce clause? (I think you know what product I’m talking about.)
  • Stupid Flu Reactions: This weekend the softball team waved instead of high-fived. Cashiers at Kroger wore rubber gloves or lathered in hand sanitizer. No surgical mask sightings. What did you see?

Wednesday Roundup: Vandelay! Say Vandelay!

  • Props to the Dallas Morning News and Austin Statesman for backing better compensation for wrongful convictions. Next up should be criminal charges for prosecutors who withhold exculpatory evidence or otherwise knowingly prosecute an innocent.

Jimmy Carter Won’t Just Shut Up and Go Away

Jacob Sullum, also a journalist based in Dallas and a friend whom I embarrassed with my entry-level poker playing at a game he hosts, talks about Jimmy Carter‘s latest inanity regarding my second favorite subject. Here’s a taste:

In a New York Times op-ed piece, former President Jimmy Carter presents revival of the federal “assault weapon” ban, which President Obama supports, as a no-brainer, since the guns that were covered by the expired 1994 law are “designed only to kill police officers and the people they defend.” Evidently, if you aim one of these firearms at a home intruder, a prairie dog, or a paper target, instead of firing a bullet it harmlessly unfurls a little flag that says “Bang!” Having polled himself and his hunting buddies, Carter reports that “none of us wants to own an assault weapon, because we have no desire to kill policemen or go to a school or workplace to see how many victims we can accumulate before we are finally shot or take our own lives.”

Read the rest here.

Thursday Roundup: I Shall Call It the Fing-Longer!

Her last job at a chicken shack paid $139 a week, barely enough to cover her cellphone bill.” This is odd. It’s been my experience that literally every stripper is a business major working towards her MBA and/or law school, not someone who would make questionable choice with personal finance. I’m perplexed, and this requires some research.

Taking the mob contracts Americans won’t take?

Far be it from me to point out how silly all some religious beliefs are. Or maybe not. This lady says her kid shouldn’t have to follow the school dress code and tuck in her shirt because of a Bible verse that says absolutely nothing about tucking in shirts but something about being modest. But whatever. Then it gets weird. The lady is sooo religious that she doesn’t go to church regularly because she doesn’t have a nice dress. What what?

This is getting a little silly with how the city keeps changing its story and paying five figure invoices for studies it claims don’t exist.

I’m not sure there is much left to argue after the case offered by three college professors about how ridiculous it is that constitutional rights are prohibited on college campuses.

Thursday Roundup: Curfews, Questions & Quality Control

Jim Olvera leads off the op-ed page of the DMN today in stellar fashion, arguing that Dallas doesn’t need a daytime curfew for juveniles, because 1) all the reasons cited just don’t add up, 2) you’re going to perpetuate the cycle of failure by criminalizing these kids, 3) police already have the tools to fight truancy without needing the jail them. I’ll go Mr. Olvera three more: 1) We don’t need to drill into the heads of young people that they need permission from government to go outside, 2) some police will use this as a tool to harass younger looking adults or as an excuse to initiate illegal searches, 3) this is America, not some freakin’ people’s republic. Daytime curfews? Are you kidding me?

Robert Guest hit a tea party yesterday. He asks a pointed question: Watching the fervor of anti tax conservatives always makes me wonder why fiscal conservatives embrace big government social conservatism (prohibition for example)? Why is it evil for the government to tax and spend billions, but not evil to arrest pot smokers? I don’t get it. It’s two sides of the same coin to me. And I’ll add that War on Drugs Robert alludes to, like a lot of the other things that conservatives back, is likewise a costly, wasteful fiscal endeavor.

Finally, now this is just bad. It’s not an off-the-cuff, live quote, but a written sentence from a news story:

A critical question is whether any constitutional rights are gained from a state legislature stripping the rights of private institutions to decide at their discretion whether they want to permit concealed handguns on their premises (which the vocal majority does not), in order to allow individuals to supposedly more freely express their Second Amendment rights.

I can’t begin to list all the grammatical and logical errors in this sentence. It goes to show the mental gymnastics people will go through to avoid simple truth. But since when are state universities “private institutions?”