Oct., 21 2008. Dave Kopel's Second Amendment Newsletter

Dave Kopel's Second Amendment Project is based at the Independence Institute, a free-market think tank in Golden, Colorado.

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Delivery of this newsletter comes courtesy of the Second Amendment Foundation, in Bellevue, Washington.

Please visit Dave Kopel's website, containing articles on the Second Amendment and other freedom topics.

Table of Contents

  1. Kopel Book on Heller now out; Obama vs. Heller; Self-defense in the Old Testament; Calvinist Connection; Blogs on FactCheck's Flubs, Inaccurate Polls; Pearson Podcast
  2. Election: Field & Stream Interviews; Obama and the Joyce Foundation, Obama Campaign and NRA; Brady Endorsement; NSSF List Theft; Pearson on State Senator Obama; AFL-CIO sides with Obama on RKBA; Huffington Post; NRA endorses SD Dems
  3. States: Georgia; New York; Virginia
  4. Congress: D.C. Gun Law passes House, Killed in Senate
  5. Law: Supreme Court; Federal; State Courts and Attorneys General
  6. Federal: ATF and Statistics; Fayetteville Case; Phoenix Straw Purchases
  7. Research: No Link between deaths and gun shows; JAMA Bias and Article; St. George Tucker; Breyer and Progressivism; Junk Science as a Tactic

New by Kopel

New Book Released!

The Heller Case: Gun Rights Affirmed!

David Kopel with Alan Korwin
Bloomfield Press
October, 2008

New Articles

When Obama Wrestles with Heller

David B. Kopel
America's First Freedom
October 2008

"Although Obama claims to support the Second Amendment, his record shows virtually unrelenting hostility toward gun ownership, especially for lawful defense. "

Is the Best Defense a Good Book? Part II: The Old Testament and Self-defense

David B. Kopel
America's First Freedom
September, 2008
PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software.

This article examines the moral teachings of the first five books of the bible, the Pentateuch of the Old Testament.

The Calvinist Connection

David B. Kopel
Liberty Magazine, pp. 27-31
October, 2008

The roots of liberty go deep. They reach to places where modern libertarians might never expect to find them.

New Blog Posts

FactCheck Flubs Obama Gun Fact Check

David B. Kopel
The Volokh Conspiracy
September 27, 2008

"FactCheck's September 22, 2008, report on the National Rifle Association's advertising critical claims that the NRA 'distorts Obama's position on gun control beyond recognition.' FactCheck itself, though, has overstated its claims, and made several errors."

Some Reasons Why Polls May be Inaccurate

David B. Kopel
The Volokh Conspiracy
October 14, 2008

"Back in the early 1990s, Gary Mauser (Simon Fraser University, British Columbia) and I wrote an article, originally published in Political Communication & Persuasion, explaining why polls are sometimes inaccurate..."

New Podcast

Interview with Richard Pearson

David B. Kopel with Richard Pearson
October 14, 2008

"Pearson has been lobbying on sporting and right to arms issues at the Illinois legislature since 1989. He has more first-hand knowledge of Obama's record on these issues than anyone except Obama himself. In the 20-minute podcast interview, Pearson suggests that Obama's claim about his supposed support for sportsmen is extremely inaccurate." The link is to the 20 minute MP3 podcast.


The Sportsman's Choice: Field & Stream Interviews the Presidential Candidates

Anthony Licata
Field & Stream
October, 2008

Chief Editor Anthony Licata sat down for exclusive interviews with both Barack Obama and John McCain on the subject of conservation and gun rights. There are links to both interviews in full off this page.

Obama and the Attempt to Destroy the Second Amendment

David T. Hardy
Pajamas Media
October 6, 2008

David Hardy here explores the connections between Barack Obama, the Joyce Foundation, a Chicago-based organization engaged in anti-RKBA activities, and the Heller decision. When Obama served on the Board of Directors of the Joyce foundation, the organization sought to influence the Supreme Court against the individual right to bear arms.

Obama Seeks to Take Down NRA Ad

Ben Smith
The Politico
September 25, 2008

"The Obama campaign has written radio stations in Pennsylvania and Ohio, pressing them to refuse to air an ad from the National Rifle Association."


Informational Website
NRA Political Victory Fund

This page features an assortment of essays and links explaining the NRA's opposition to Barack Obama's candidacy for president.

Jim and Sarah Brady, Brady Campaign Endorse Barack Obama and Joe Biden

Press Release
The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
October 13, 2008

"Sarah and Jim Brady and the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence with its network of Million Mom March Chapters endorsed Senator Barack Obama for President and Senator Joseph Biden for Vice President today, and urged Americans to vote for them."

Obama Campaign Unlawfully Misuses Proprietary Firearms Industry Media List

Press Release
The National Shooting Sports Foundation
October 8, 2008

"The Obama campaign in Indiana, on September 27, unlawfully obtained and made unauthorized use of a proprietary media list belonging to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the trade association for the firearms industry."

Illinois State Rifle Association Executive Director Richard Pearson Issues Open Letter to Nation's Sportsmen Regarding Obama's History in the Illinois Senate

Richard Pearson, Chairman, Illinois State Rifle Association
International Business Times
October 15, 2008

"Although Obama claims to be an advocate for the 2nd Amendment, his voting record in the Illinois Senate paints a very different picture. While a state senator, Obama voted for a bill that would ban nearly every hunting rifle, shotgun and target rifle owned by Illinois citizens."

AFL-CIO Joins The Gun Wars with Targeted Mail Blitz Defending Obama on Gun Rights

Greg Sargent
Talking Points Memo Election Central
October 14, 2008

"The union's decision to depart from a strictly economic message and to edge into the culture wars is driven in part by a stepped up campaign in the battlegrounds by the National Rifle Association, which has run ads accusing Obama of conspiring to take away people's guns."

The NRA's Double Standard for Obama and McCain

Richard Feldman
The Huffington Post
October 8, 2008

"Why aren't the leaders of the "gun rights" movement in America pleased with the fact that the Democratic nominee for President has reached out to gun owners in re-assuring them that he supports gun ownership?"

The NRA backs Dems in South Dakota. Just kind of interesting

Kevin Woster
The Rapid City Journal
October 13, 2008

"The NRA showed its affection for incumbent Democratic Sen. Tim Johnson last week with an "A'' rating and an endorsement in his re-election campaign against Republican state Rep. Joel Dykstra. The organization has also endorsed incumbent Democratic Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin who has received an "A'' rating from the NRA in all five or her statewide campaigns over Republican challenger Chris Lien."



Monks with guns? Burma's Younger Activists Get Bolder

Anand Gopal
The Christian Science Monitor
September 18, 2008

" 'Last September the Army proved too powerful for us and defeated our nonviolent tactics," says the young monk, whose real name, like those of other activists in this story, has been changed for security reasons. "We need weapons. That is the only way we can bring down this regime.' "


Government to Review Gun Licensing Laws

Petronella Sibeene
New Era (Namibia)
October 3, 2008

"Minister of Safety and Security, Dr. Nickey Iyambo, has said there are too many guns in society with the Namibian Police receiving not less than 500 gun licence applications every month."

New Zealand

The Most Dangerous Job in Town

Beck Vass
The New Zealand Herald
October 11, 2008

"More than half of Auckland dairy owners feel threatened and almost a third are stashing weapons under their counters for protection." 'Dairy' here is the equivalent of an American convenience store.

United Kingdom

More from Britain

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
October 14, 2008

"They're now instructing people who use barbed wire to keep out thieves to take it down lest a thief get hurt and sue." The story to which Hardy refers is the item below.

No Barbed Wire...It Might Hurt the Thieves, Allotment Holders Told

The Daily Mail (UK)
October 9, 2008

"A gardener who fenced off his allotment with barbed wire after being targeted by thieves has been ordered to take it down ' "in case intruders scratch themselves."

The States


Georgia Citizen Detained for Open Carry

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
October 9, 2008

"Another one. GeorgiaCarry.org filed suit and reports on the case. (A bit of background: the plaintiff is enlisted military, and was openly carrying in a store. He was stopped and the firearm confiscated. When he asked for its return, he was told it couldn't be returned, because they had forwarded it to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. . . )"

Georgia Carry: An Informational Clearing House for Georgia Firearms License Issues

Informational Web Page

This page features an informative round-up of issues and cases it has filed over civilian carry of firearms in Georgia.

New York

NY New-gun Database has Yet to Lead to Prosecution

Michael Hill
Associated Press (NY)
September 28, 2008

"New York's 7-year-old database of handgun "fingerprints" has yet to lead to a criminal prosecution, and questions linger about its effectiveness. Still, state police remain committed to the database, saying more time and a long-awaited link to a federal ballistics database could bring success."


VA open carry in parks OK

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
September 30, 2008

"Virginia's Attorney General has ruled (pdf) that the State agency regulating its parks was without authority to promulgate a rule forbidding open carrying." A link to the decision itself appears in the 'Attorneys General' section below.


Childers Gets Win in House over D.C. Guns

Aha Radelat
The Clarion-Ledger(MS)
September 18, 2008

"Rep. Travis Childers notched his first major legislative win Wednesday when the House approved his amendment to reverse a 32-year ban on gun ownership in the nation's capital."

D.C. Passes Gun Law, but House Looms: Congress Considers Limiting City Authority

David C. Lipscomb
The Washington Times
September 17, 2008

"The D.C. Council approved emergency legislation Tuesday that would legalize semi-automatic handguns in the District and ease storage requirements for gun owners, while the Democrat-led Congress took steps to trump the city's home-rule authority and set its own terms for relaxed gun ownership in the nation's capital."

Sen. Hutchison: Democrats Block DC Gun Ban Bill

Kay Bailey Hutchinson
United States Senator, Texas
September 25, 2008

"U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), Texas's senior Senator, today pushed legislation, which was overwhelmingly passed by the House of Representatives last week, to affirm the second amendment rights for all D.C. residents but was blocked by Senate Democrats."


The Supreme Court

Heller Team Reply on Motion for Attorneys' Fees

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
October 13, 2008
PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software.

"In trying to hold the award down, DC apparently argued that it was a perfectly ordinary appeal, so Gura takes all their requests for extensions of time, which universally claimed that it was unbelievably complex, and sticks it in their craw." The text of their motion is here: http://legaltimes.typepad.com/blt/files/hellerGura.pdf.


Restoring the Second Amendment: Why State and Local Governments Should Respect the Right to Bear Arms

Damon W. Root
Slate Magazine
October 7, 2008

The case of Nordyke v. King , now before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, may finally find adjudication in the aftermath of Heller. Alameda's law banning guns on public property, aimed at suppressing gun shows, may be permissible under Heller, but the Heller decisions directly contradicts the arguments Alameda offers in support of their case and law.

Roundup of Nordyke Briefs

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
October 3, 2008

Hardy links to the collection, by Gene Hoffman, here: http://www.hoffmang.com/archives/000959.html, Hardy's site has comments and updated information.

Gun Owners Sue Winnetka over Gun Ordinance

Christopher Peterson
Pioneer Press (IL)
October 2, 2008

Gun owners have sued Winnetka over its handgun ordinance, saying the ban on operable handguns violates their Second Amendment rights.

NRA Files Suit Against Winnetka, IL

Press Release
The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action
September 23, 2008

Here is the NRA-ILA's announcement of the suit. Winnetka's city government suspended the city's gun ban, which appears to contravene Heller, but has not taken any action to repeal it.

Settlement in New Orleans Gun Seizures

David Hardy
Of Arms and the Law
October 8, 2008

AP reports the case has settled. It suggests that part of the settlement is a permanent injunction against seizures in similar future situations.

After Years of Stonewalling, New Orleans Mayor Admits Illegal Gun Confiscation, Settles with NRA

Press Release
The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action
October 8, 2008

Here is the NRA-ILA's version of the settlement over the Katrina-inspired confiscations of firearms from New Orleans residents.

Drug Users Lose Right to Bear Arms

David Ziemer
Wisconsin Law Journal
October 8, 2008

"The U.S. District Court in the Western District of Wisconsin has issued what appears to be first opinion in the country since D.C. v. Heller, 128 S.Ct. 2783 (2008), to consider whether the federal ban on possession of firearms by users of controlled substances runs afoul of the Second Amendment."

Opponents of Tough Federal Sentencing Rules Take Up Heller for Help

Zach Lowe
The AmLaw Daily
September 23, 2008

Opponents of strong mandatory sentences for possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime hope to use the Heller ruling in their legal arguments.

State Courts and Attorneys General

Official Advisory Opinion

Robert F. McDonnell
Attorney General, Commonwealth of Virginia
September 26, 2008
PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software.

Here is the opinion by Virginia's Attorney General declaring regulations against the civilian carry of firearms in Virginia state parks invalid.

Jersey City's one-gun-a-month law rejected by court

The Jersey Journal
September 29, 2008

A state Appellate Court today upheld a lower court's decision to overturn an Jersey City ordinance that would have limited the number of handguns an individual could purchase to one per month.

Supreme Court Strikes Down City Ordinance Banning Guns in Public Parks

Opinion Summaries
The Supreme Court of Ohio
September 18, 2008
PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software.

"The Supreme Court of Ohio held today that a Clyde city ordinance banning possession of firearms in municipal parks is unconstitutional because it conflicts with a general state law that permits licensed individuals to carry a concealed weapon on any public property other than at locations specified in the state statute. The Court's 4-3 decision was authored by Justice Terrence O'Donnell." The actual decision is here: http://www.supremecourtofohio.gov/rod/docs/pdf/0/2008/2008-Ohio-4605.pdf

Gun Rights Warrior Fights For NRA in California: Chuck Michel's Latest Case Challenges Ban On Firearms In San Francisco Public Housing

Rebecca Breyer
The Los Angeles Daily Journal
September 9, 2008

Heller brief co-author C.D. "Chuck" Michel has filed a suit in federal court against the San Francisco Housing Authority's ban via lease provision on the ownership of weapons by residents, citing Heller.

AG says Nickels' Authority Restricted on Guns

Sharon Pian Chan
The Seattle Times
October 16, 2008

"Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels does not have the authority to prohibit guns on public property, says State Attorney General Rob McKenna."


ATF and Statistics

"Say Uncle"
October 2, 2008

"A statistician testified that ATF's National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (NFRTR) should only be used to pursue leads. As such, a jury became deadlocked on some charges... "

US v. Friesen: Acquittal/Mistrial

Joshua Prince
Prince Law Offices
October 1, 2008

Here is the Law Firm's view of the testimony above, which resulted in a hung jury in the case Prince Law had under litigation. "The one big factor was the BATFE shot itself in the foot on this one because ERB registered a LOT of guns, all marked differently and all in different fonts, etc. There is no one or two ways that ERB marked and registered its guns. The BATFE went out and photographed about 20 guns (the legality of the BATFE using the NFRTR for this purpose is left for another article and the courts), all of which showed these different markings. The US Prosecutor was not happy about having to turn them over in discovery. The BATFE has a LOT more to lose by retrying this case then letting it slip by. Moreover, just because the criminal case ended in an acquittal/mistrial, does not mean they cannot bring a forfeiture action to keep the gun."

Gunshops Can Keep Licenses, Judge Says

Paul Woolverton
The Fayetteville Observer
September 17, 2008

"A federal judge decided Tuesday that Jim's Gun Jobbery of Fayetteville and the Jim's store in Wilmington can keep their licenses to sell firearms." The BATFE was trying to force the gunshop out of business over minor and unintentional paperwork errors.

ATF, U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona and Firearms Industry Join Forces to Stop Illegal Purchases of Firearms in Phoenix

Press Release
The National Shooting Sports Foundation
September 24, 2008

"The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona and representatives from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) - the trade association for the firearms industry - today jointly announced the return of a major campaign to reduce significantly the illegal straw purchases of firearms in Phoenix."


Study Finds No Link Between Gun Shows and Gun Deaths

Press Release
University of Michigan
October 1, 2008
PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software.

"A new study finds no evidence that gun shows lead to substantial increases in either gun-related homicides or suicides. The University of Michigan and University of Maryland study also shows that tighter regulation of gun shows does not appear to reduce the number of firearms-related deaths." The study itself is here: http://closup.umich.edu./research/workingpapers/papers/gunshows-sept08-final.pdf


Days of Our Trailers
October 1, 2008

"A recent article in the Journal of the American Medical Assoc. (2008;300(13):1575-1577) shows that even Doctors can be fooled." The author of what is essentially a commentary, 'Lawrence Gostin, JD,' is not an M.D.

"The Right to Bear Arms: Constitutional Law, Politics, and Public Health

Lawrence Gostin
The Journal of the American Medical Association
October 1, 2008

The first 150 words of Gostin's JAMA article, with a link to purchase the entire text.

The Lecture Notes of St. George Tucker: A Framing Era View of the Bill of Rights

David T. Hardy
Working Paper
October 14, 2008

"St. George Tucker was a prominent legal figure in the early Republic. He taught law at William and Mary from 1790 to 1804, and in 1803 published the first edition of Blackstone's Commentaries to be annotated with American legal references. This paper is a transcription of his lecture notes dealing with the Bill of Rights, which are archived in the Swem Library of the College of William and Mary." The paper may be downloaded by means of the buttons directly above the title.

"The Last Progressive: Justice Breyer, Heller, and "Judicial Judgment"

Richard Schragger
University of Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Working Paper Series

"This paper considers Justice Breyer's dissent in District of Columbia v. Heller in which the Court established an individual right to bear arms as a species of progressive jurisprudence. By progressive, I do not mean a political program but rather an approach to how the Supreme Court views its role and its work." The full text of the paper may be found here: http://tinyurl.com/6garfb.

Post Heller Junk Science

Paul Gallant and Joanne D. Eisen
America's First Freedom
September, 2008

"Biased research has been, and now will continue to be, a favorite tactic that will permit gun-banners to chip away at our Second Amendment rights by showing the need for one new 'reasonable' regulation after another."

This newsletter is compiled with help from Dr. Rob S. Rice. For more on this sesquipedalian, yet hyperesthenic individual, see here: http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/rrice/rrice_hd.html. Dr. Rice will appear on two panels and do a reading from his works at Denver's MileHi Con, for which appearances see here: http://www.milehicon.org/Schedule%20MHC%2040.pdf

Al Qaeda delenda est!

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