Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Second Amendment as an Expression of First Principles

Edward J. Erler
Co-author, The Founders on Citizenship and Immigration

Edward J. Erler is professor emeritus of political science at California State University, San Bernardino. He earned his B.A. from San Jose State University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in government from the Claremont Graduate School. He has published numerous articles on constitutional topics in journals such as Interpretation, the Notre Dame Journal of Law, and the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy. He was a member of the California Advisory Commission on Civil Rights from 1988-2006 and served on the California Constitutional Revision Commission in 1996. He is the author of The American Polity and co‑author of The Founders on Citizenship and Immigration. This fall he is a visiting distinguished professor of politics at Hillsdale College.

Reprinted by permission from Imprimus, a publication of Hillsdale College. Although this is five years old, it is still pertinent today, in view of the renewed attacks on the Second Amendment. Now retired Justice Stevens advocates repealing the 2nd. 

This is a long read, so find the time to give it your attention. You can also see Dr. Erler's presentation at the end. Added note, fully automatic weapons are not totally illegal. But they are very expensive, and possession without the proper paperwork is illegal. The bold emphasis in the article is my addition.

The following is adapted from a lecture delivered on February 13, 2013, at Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship in Washington, D.C.

We are currently mired in a frantic debate about the rights of gun owners. One example should suffice to prove that the debate has become hysterical: Second Amendment supporters, one prominent but less than articulate member of Congress alleges, have become “enablers of mass murder.”

Special animus has been directed against so-called assault rifles. These are semi-automatic, not automatic weapons—the latter have been illegal under federal law since the 1930s—because they require a trigger pull for every round fired. Some semi-automatic firearms, to be sure, can be fitted with large-capacity magazines. But what inspires the ire of gun control advocates seems to be their menacing look—somehow they don’t appear fit for polite society. No law-abiding citizen could possibly need such a weapon, we are told—after all, how many rounds from a high-powered rifle are needed to kill a deer? And we are assured that these weapons are not well-adapted for self-defense—that only the military and the police need to have them.

Now it’s undeniable, Senator Dianne Feinstein to the contrary notwithstanding, that semi-automatic weapons such as the AR-15 are extremely well-adapted for home defense—especially against a crime that is becoming more and more popular among criminals, the home invasion.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

North Carolina Legislature School Safety Committee Meeting

NC School Safety Cmte Mtg
Wednesday, March 20, I attended the first meeting of the Legislature's School Safety Committee Meeting. There were speakers from several branches of NC government.

A few highlights:

Speaker Tim Moore gave a nice welcoming speech.

A North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) speakers said, "we stand ready too respond" (after an incident) and identify the bad guy before the fact.

The most disconcerting thing I heard at the meeting was in a presentation by Elliott Smith, Acting agent in charge of Fusion Center of the SBI. He quoted inflated statistics published by Bloomberg's front group, Moms Demand Action, that there have been over 300 school shootings since 2013. This is simply not true. It is refuted even by such mainstream publications as USA TodayTime, and the   Washington Post, I noted that one representative challenged Mr. Smith on his facts. I recommend that Mr. Smith take another look, to restore his own credibility.

A couple of takeaways from this meeting-
  1. I have been hearing for years how the folks in favor of gun control (which, when you drill down far enough, means gun bans) want to have a conversation or "civilized dialogue". How can you have a conversation with someone who publishes bogus statistics.
  2. More importantly, even though the statistics are not as bad as the Mom's state, the stakes are still just as high. It is America's children that are at stake. 
And more recently-

A retired Supreme has opined that the Second Amendment should be repealed. The truth finally outs.

So while the legislative committee had enough gendarmes present that you couldn't stir them with a stick, children are still basically not provided with any realistic protection at many schools. The legislature could, no expense, provide enabling legislation for armed volunteer staff at our schools, and while they are at it, provide them immunity from liability for good faith actions.

Video of some attendees at the meeting

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

No more gun bans, Mr. President

Below is the text of the letter I recently sent to President Trump. The latest I hear is that he is not calling for a ban on sales of long guns to young adults.  I hope this holds. If you have the time and inclination, it would be good for him to hear from you, too. You can use snail mail, as I did with this letter, or you can click to use the 


March 6, 2018
The President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500 
SUBJECT: No more gun bans 

Dear Mr. President: 
I met you once, at the 2015 NRA Annual Meeting in Nashville. You had just spoken and invited the press to meet with you out in the hallway. I was the last person to ask you a question. You had fielded several questions about economic issues, etc., and had turned and started walking away. 
I called out, “One gun question!” 
You stopped, turned around and came back. I asked if elected to the presidency, would you use that office as a bully pulpit to advocate for national reciprocity.*  
You replied,

Monday, February 26, 2018

You are on you own

Trouble strikes, and who ya gonna call?

  • Ghostbusters?
  • FBI?
  • Broward County, (FL) Sheriff's Office?

If any of them comes, how long will it take? By the way, the FBI doesn't answer 911 calls. So you should prepare to be your own first responder.

Five years ago, I wrote a column about the electric toothbrush, comparing it's two minute timer to the time it takes for police response. I assumed in that column that the police would respond in a timely manner. Below* is that column's text again. What has changed since then?

We have learned that sometimes the FBI doesn't follow up on leads. Maybe they were trying to hard to "create a link" between President Trump and the Russki's. I don't know.

We also learn that one or more sheriffs's deputies have been accused of waiting outside while there was wanton slaughter going on inside. What's up with that? Protocols changed after Columbine.

Otherwise, it seems much is the same at our nation's schools, with relatively few exceptions. Maybe one SRO at a school. That's not enough, especially if he doesn't have the chutzpah to go after the murderer.

If you are in a mall, a church, or sitting at home, the situation is always the same, you are on your own. What's your plan?

One other thing has changed. The Left is attempting to pillory the NRA. They want to vilify you and me for the horrible acts of a crazy person. If you are not a member of the NRA, and are a gun owner, I urge you to join. I am a recruiter and you can join at the link below. As Ben Franklin said,
We must, indeed, all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.

*The electric toothbrush
My electric toothbrush operates for two minutes exactly, then shuts off. Some nights, two minutes seems like an eternity.

Police response time to 911 calls is five times that, about ten minutes. Nobody's fault, that's just the way it is.

Why do some people insist that our children, involuntarily plac
ed in gun free zones (our public schools) wait those ten minutes after the predator has arrived and begun his slaughter?

Law enforcement officers are now trained that the first on the scene goes on in, not waiting for backup. This is to minimize the carnage perpetrated by the predator. Armed and trained teachers, volunteers, and police on the scene can reduce the carnage even more by further reducing the lag time.

Think about that the next time you brush your teeth!


You can join the NRA (or upgrade your membership) HERE.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

NRA ok's packing at Dallas meeting

The NRA meeting this year in Dallas will once again recognize the right to carry, as has been the case for the last several meetings. Here, with a link to the NRAAM site, is their official statement.
Firearms Policy for the NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits
Crowd at the NRAAM in Nashville, 2015

During the 2018 NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits, lawfully carried firearms will be permitted in the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center and the Omni Dallas Hotel in accordance with Texas law.  When carrying your firearm remember to follow all federal, state, and local laws.
With the recent display of a billboard stating "Kill the NRA", members in attendance may wish to consider carrying their defensive firearms.

Other things to consider when traveling to Dallas-

If you drive, be sure you are aware of the carry laws in states you pass through. Two sources for information are; and an app called Legal Heat, available for Android or Apple.

If you fly, be sure and follow the guidelines of both your airline and the TSA for checking a firearm in  your checked baggage, never in carry-on.

TSA guidelines are available HERE.

Each airline has its own rules, too. Southwest rules are HERE.

Part of Delta's policy states, "All firearms checked as baggage must be picked up at the Baggage Service Office upon arrival at your final destination. ID will be required to claim your checked firearm." It has been reported that Delta puts zip ties on luggage that contains a firearm, so don't expect to have access to your firearm until after you gain access to a tool to remove the zip tie. Maybe a cheap multi-tool should reside in an outside pocket of your checked bag.

A case such as THIS, with a combo lock (no key to lose) would work well for the handgun. I suggest a second one for the ammo, in the same luggage.

One last thing, if your plane has an emergency landing in New York or New Jersey, and you take possession of your baggage that contains a firearm, DO NOT attempt to re-check that luggage to continue your flight. Rent a car and stow that locked baggage in the trunk and drive to Philly. Why, New York and New Jersey WILL put you in jail. If you find this strong suggestion hard to believe, do your own research.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

They want to kill the NRA?

From NRA FB page
So now someone wants to kill the NRA? Do they know who the NRA is? Do they not understand that the NRA is not just a group of leaders in suburban Washington?

No, the NRA includes their neighbors, maybe some of their friends, their doctors, ministers, store clerks, and literally millions of Americans as well as other liberty lovers around the globe.  "The NRA" also includes many people who have an affinity for the organization, although they are not dues-paying members.

Are you a member of this second group? Have you been thinking about joining, but have just not gotten around to it? As an NRA recruiter, I can offer a reduced membership cost for about three more weeks.

Current pricing is shown in this chart:

One-Year ($40) - $30
Three-Year ($100) - $85
Five-Year ($140) - $100
Life ($1,500) - $600
Distinguished Life ($750) - $500
Junior Life ($750) - $500

You can join (or renew) by clicking this LINK.

The NRA is not a perfect organization, but is among the most effective. At this time, with the left and the media (but then I repeat myself) mounting a campaign against guns, now is the time to join.