'Barack Obama Supports Gun Rights'

Barack Obama has another ad, this one a TV spot featuring a life member of the NRA, attesting to his support for Second Amendment rights. CBS reports that the ad is running in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina. "Barack Obama supports gun rights, our right to defend ourselves, the Second Amendment," the narrator says. "That's the truth."

Is it? Obama's reading of the Second Amendment is so narrow that he sees no constitutional problem with the Washington, D.C., gun ban that was overturned by the Supreme Court or a similar law in Chicago. Maybe he supports the right to own a disassembled rifle and the right to defend ourselves with pointy sticks, but in practice his position is pretty much the same as that of gun controllers who continue to insist that the Second Amendment protects no rights the government need respect.

Meanwhile, the NRA is stepping up its anti-Obama ad campaign, which I discuss here and here.

[via Trey Garrison]

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  • ||

    Obama's involvement with the Joyce Foundation should leave no doubt about his position.

  • sage||

    I still can't make up my mind: Giant Douche or Turd Sandwich? Thank God a coin has two sides.

  • Elemenope||

    I have to say, this is one of the first things that his campaign has put out that is on the same level of bullshit as McCain's campaign.

    No, Obama does not support gun rights in any meaningful sense. He supports gun *privileges* for hunters and little old ladies.

  • JMR||

    Just because Obama doesn't support our rights, don't get fooled into thinking McCain somehow does. Ya don't magically go from "c" grades to flunking by sticking up

    http://www.gunowners.org/mccaintb.htm

    for the good guys. McCain sucks on this issue, anyone trying to paint it otherwise is lying to you. And of all fora, I shouldn't have to remind this one that the NRA is FAR from the end-all & be-all of gun rights groups for a very good reason. They're acting like an inside-the-beltway branch of the Republican Party because, frankly, they ARE.

  • ||

    The best comment on this I've seen: Obama supports Second Amendment rights, subject to reasonable restrictions. And all restrictions are reasonable.

    It's similar to his support for "safe" nuclear power: I'm sure that by "safe" he means "first prove you can contain radioactive waste for 1 million years."

  • ||

    It's a blatant lie. Cue blue team members to gymnastically explain why it's not.

  • ||

    As someone who isn't in the bubble, the fact that Obama's understanding of the scope of gun rights doesn't go far enough for the staff at and commenters at Reason magazine gives me very little useful data.

    By itself, that could mean anything from "he wants to ban all guns" to "he wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."

  • ||

    It would be a lot easier to believe that Barack Obama supports gun rights if he acknowledged his previous statements to the contrary and disavowed them in a forthright way.

    But then what politician ever wants to admit, "I was wrong." Memo also to Bob Bar and and his lukewarm disavowal of his previous life as a drug warrior.

    BO would also been more believable if he had chosen a western Democrat with known public Second Amendment cred. There are a couple with exective experience and one even had real foreign policy experience.

    But, instead he went with a NRA F-rated eastern establishment party insider.

  • ||

    joe, just in case you weren't aware of the fact but you have needed way more than a "background check" for the purchase of any machine gun for about seventy years now.

    If there's anything that annoys a gun nut more that a gunbanner it's someone who isn't aware of all the restrictions that already exist on gun ownership.

  • Elemenope||

    As someone who isn't in the bubble, the fact that Obama's understanding of the scope of gun rights doesn't go far enough for the staff at and commenters at Reason magazine gives me very little useful data.

    By itself, that could mean anything from "he wants to ban all guns" to "he wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."


    Oh come on, joe. He has made enough absurd comments on the issue to get a general sense that he panders to hunters and little old ladies and thinks most other reasons to own a gun are silly and/or dangerous. Which squrely puts guns in the realm of "privileges given to people we like" rather than "rights held by all whether they are scary people or not".

    Besides, he's been a Illinois pol for a while and he never there objected to the fact that they have some seriously whacked out gun restrictions. If he cared, he would have mentioned it before now.

  • Trey Garrison||

    Joe, what part of Obama's support for the DC gun ban is giving you trouble here?

  • ||

    I still can't make up my mind: Giant Douche or Turd Sandwich? Thank God a coin has two sides.

    Yes, it's called "heads they win tails you lose".

  • ||

    And Jacob has furnished two links that explain Reason writers' views.

    BO has explicitly called for banning all handguns in the past. If he no longer feels that way he needs to acknowledge that he was wrong then and feels differently now.

    But it doesn't make much difference. McCain is as bad on this issue (gun show "loohole" anyone?) and worse on others.

    Look maybe he's telling the truth but so far I'm unconvinced.

  • lurker||

    I think it's a huge sign of progress that Obama is lying and pandering to us on this. 20 years ago the Democrats would brag about banning guns. The center has shifted in our direction on this.

  • Elemenope||

    If there's anything that annoys a gun nut more that a gunbanner it's someone who isn't aware of all the restrictions that already exist on gun ownership.

    It was annoying enough that during The Brave One the cop characters kept referring to a semi-automatic pistol as an automatic pistol.

    And that movie is not by any means the worst offender in the "we can't be bothered to do research for our script" category.

  • Warty||

    joe, just in case you weren't aware of the fact but you have needed way more than a "background check" for the purchase of any machine gun for about seventy years now.

    Careful. joe doesn't take kindly to gun pedantry.

  • Elemenope||

    I think it's a huge sign of progress that Obama is lying and pandering to us on this. 20 years ago the Democrats would brag about banning guns. The center has shifted in our direction on this.

    True, and I've aid this before as well: the the Dems were to give up their fetishism on this issue, they would be unbeatable for a good long time. Scary as that is.

  • ||

    Thanks, Isaac. I thought you could get them from a machine at 7-11.

    What's the gun nut equivalent of "You need to take Econ 101?"

    Elemenope,

    Oh come on, joe. He has made enough absurd comments on the issue to get a general sense that he panders to hunters and little old ladies and thinks most other reasons to own a gun are silly and/or dangerous. Which squrely puts guns in the realm of "privileges given to people we like" rather than "rights held by all whether they are scary people or not". On the other hand, his statements going back quite a ways about the 2nd Amendment being an individual rather than collective right are quite different than the interpretation of most gun control supporters.

    Trey, the part where he put out a clarification that he didn't intend to say he supported DC's ban, while articulating a theory of the 2nd Amendment consistent with that in the Heller decision and inconsistent with DC's gun ban, is giving me trouble here. And not so much "trouble" as "confirmation of my impression that he has been ambiguous."

  • ||

    J sub D | October 8, 2008, 1:21pm | #
    It's a blatant lie. Cue blue team members to gymnastically explain why it's not.

    joe | October 8, 2008, 1:26pm | #
    As someone who isn't in the bubble, the fact that Obama's understanding of the scope of gun rights doesn't go far enough for the staff at and commenters at Reason magazine gives me very little useful data.

    By itself, that could mean anything from "he wants to ban all guns" to "he wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."


    Usually there are intervening posts cluttering things up between J sub D throwing down the gauntlet and joe picking it up again. It is gratifying to see such clarity in a thread. :o)

  • ||

    joe enter the conversation on cue. He will now explain "what works in Chicago".

  • Franklin Harris||

    Maybe he supports the right to own a disassembled rifle and the right to defend ourselves with pointy sticks...



    Still, I suppose a pointy stick will do so long as your attacker is wielding a passion fruit, or possibly a banana.

  • Franklin Harris||

    He will now explain "what works in Chicago".



    If I rightly recall, the "Chicago Way" involves guns.

  • ||

    It's always amazing how gun threads lower the collective I.Q. around here.

    In just about every other context, the phrase "gives me very little useful data" would be read as precisely the opposite of a definitive statement.

    Just goes to show how much RAH RAH TEAM RED! bullshit underlies so much of this debate. It's like baby-boomers arguing about the drug war - they're not really arguing about drug policy. They're arguing that only those bad people disagree with them. And if you aren't on the bus, you're one of the bad people.

  • Elemenope||

    On the other hand, his statements going back quite a ways about the 2nd Amendment being an individual rather than collective right are quite different than the interpretation of most gun control supporters.

    That is true, but buys him nothing, since he bizarrely comes to the gun control position via an "individual rights" interpretation. I can't even twist myself that far into a pretzel, and I was a philosophy major.

    In order to endorse the individual rights interpretation, one must basically detach (or ignore) the prefatory clause on militia, but that only leaves unambiguous language that the right "shall not be infringed". How the hell does one get from "shall not be infringed" to "reasonable regulation" given that by his own statements often that regulation includes outright bans?

  • ||

    When the perfect storm; dem house, senate and white house hits it will be clear that Heller's 'reasonable restriction' loophole will deliver:

    bans on arms and ammo by type,

    new classes of prohibited persons via the nascent nationalized, electronic health record mandate, specifically relating to definitions of 'mentally unqualified',

    federal ban on private sales, enforce to the state level by threats of withheld 'free fed funds',

    de facto national registration by voiding the already likely violated bar to using NICS to build an ownership database,

    for those permitted to possess there will be limits to buying ammo and supplies such as powder, brass, primers, etc,

    bar to buying ammo in caliber for which you do not have a registered gun,

    punitive taxes on ammo (the old Moynihan ploy),

    CONgress is sworn on the 5th, Pres on the 20th. What prevents an immediate session call, passage of the economic re-ordering and gun ban bills, and same day drive in signing ceremony. After all, it's change we want and we want it now.

    Neither candidate believes in the second; Obama will just toss it faster than the other guy.

  • ||

    Franklin,

    And that's why the cops took them away. They wanted to come up with a winning hand in an escalation fight.

    (This is not an endorsement of shooting cops who are doing their job to protect and serve the public.)

  • Elemenope||

    joe, there isn't a paucity of data. He didn't act on some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country in Illinois when he was in a position to do so. He flip-flopped like a fish, and unconvincingly, on Heller. He has never repudiated statements that include advocating for banning handguns. And he has adopted rhetoric on individual rights interpretations that is just shy of ridiculous.

    What else would you need? Him introducing legislation to make the already ridiculous regulations even tighter?

  • ||

    And that movie is not by any means the worst offender in the "we can't be bothered to do research for our script" category.

    And when you think of how far movies and TV have come in terms of proper gun handling, terminology, and identification, it's amazing. Just watch a cop show from 10 years ago and it's stunningly wrong. But Hollywood has actually stepped up its game a bit. There are still mistakes, but almost all military people (and quite a few cops) keep their fingers off triggers; aim properly; etc.

    On The Shield in season 6 Vic is supposed to leave his gun before a meet with a gang banger boss. He drops the mag out and says "there, satisfied?" and keeps the gun. I'm fuming going "IN THE CHAMBER!", and I'm pissed because this show is usually excellent in this way. Then Vic gets in trouble, pulls the gun and says "your boys were to stoned to realize I left one in the chamber". And I was happy again.

  • ||

    I sure hope an Obama presidency wouldn't result in the Chicagoization of America. While the improvement in American pizza overall would be a good thing, perpetual one-family rule, corruption, bad baseball, and national gun and fois gras bans would not.

  • Elemenope||

    punitive taxes on ammo (the old Moynihan ploy)

    Well, if a bullet cost five thousand dollars, there would be no more innocent bystanders...

  • ||

    Can we please not parse the 2nd amendment again. The locutions of the gun-haters are often so retarded as to make my brain bleed.

    Do you think they would have left us such an inkblot if they knew what would happen?

  • Tom W (Fla. not FL)||

    You can refer to a semi-auto pistol as an automatic pistol, even if it's not fully automatic. It's just the common, accepted terminology when describing handguns. Over the last couple of decades, as revolvers were phased out of police service, the language was always "revolvers vs. automatics" in both gun publications and police departments.

    However, "automatic rifle" just about always refers to a select fire/fully automatic rifle.

    Hopefully Obama's shallow pro-gun pandering means he won't do anything stupid or confiscatory in office.

  • Elemenope||

    And when you think of how far movies and TV have come in terms of proper gun handling, terminology, and identification, it's amazing. Just watch a cop show from 10 years ago and it's stunningly wrong. But Hollywood has actually stepped up its game a bit. There are still mistakes, but almost all military people (and quite a few cops) keep their fingers off triggers; aim properly; etc.

    I agree it has improved by leaps and bounds. That's why The Brave One leaped out in my mind. Whoever was paid as a technical consultant on that should be flogged.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Hmmmm . . . this thread could turn into a Joe beatdown or a Joe came to do battle thread. Cool.

  • ||

    See, Elemenope, this is the problem right here:

    the gun control position

    What is THE gun control position? Is is "anything less libertarian than Reason magazine?"

    How the hell does one get from "shall not be infringed" to "reasonable regulation" given that by his own statements often that regulation includes outright bans? His statements about the DC ban are much less definitive than your reading. When asked if he supports such a ban, he answers with koans. "What works in Chicago might not work in Kansas," and the like.

    As far as I can tell, he gave one definitive "Yes" to a question about DC's law in the midst of a back-and-forth, which he later said was a misstatement.

  • ||

    Just goes to show how much RAH RAH TEAM RED! bullshit underlies so much of this debate.

    Yeah joe. I'm a GOP lapdog around here aren't I? Fortunately, your non-partisan postings balance it out.

  • ||

    And, Elemenope, if we charged $5k a pop to vote (rather than promise you benefits for the right vote), few would participate.

    Apparently you prefer to be handed privileges rather than have the ability to rationally exercise rights.

    Ah'm jest askin'.

  • David W.||

    [i]joe[/i]'s rights. This place has gunnuts who don't think too good on gun issues.

  • ||

    Thanks, Isaac. I thought you could get them from a machine at 7-11.



    joe, you're the one who keeps making stupid fucking statements like "he [only] wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."

    If Obama was saying nothing more that "I unequivocally support the National Firearms Act of 1934 hardly anyone here would be having a problem with him.

  • Warty||

    Hopefully Obama's shallow pro-gun pandering means he won't do anything stupid or confiscatory in office.

    He might be smart enough to remember what the 1994 ASSAULTWEAPOONNNSN ban got Clinton that November, but we'll see, won't we.

    Semi-related: at dinner a few months ago, my 90 year old grandmother was horrified when my little sister said she wanted a gun, and said something about how people make guns into god. I was really tempted to tell her that guns exist, but I decided that she'd probably die from shock.

    Anyway, I can't believe that anyone still has the patience to argue about gun control anymore. Everything that there is to say has been said, and I'm right, so fuck you.

  • ||

    LMNOP,

    He didn't act on some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country in Illinois when he was in a position to do so. No onen's claiming he's a gun rights crusader. If you haven't noticed, gun laws are pretty popular in Illinois.

    He has never repudiated statements that include advocating for banning handguns. Though he has, more recently, expressed an individual-rights reading that is inconsistent with that position.

    And he has adopted rhetoric on individual rights interpretations that is just shy of ridiculous. I've got to back to the fact that Obama's understanding of the scope of gun rights doesn't go far enough for the staff at and commenters at Reason magazine gives me very little useful data. The militia reading was the majority position in the Democratic Party and the law of the land when Obama rejected it. That the position he expressed strikes you as "ridiculous" tells me less than the fact that he adopted a Constitutional reading of the issue at odds with the mainstream of his party.

  • Asharak||

    The NRA said and did nothing when Jim Crow laws prohibited blacks from owning firearms.

  • ||

    Good thing Obama's not in the NRA then.

  • ||

    No onen's claiming he's a gun rights crusader. If you haven't noticed, gun laws are pretty popular in Illinois.

    Well that settles it. Popular opinion outweighs constitutionally protected rights.

    Jim Crow sends his thanks.

  • ||

    If Obama was saying nothing more that "I unequivocally support the National Firearms Act of 1934 hardly anyone here would be having a problem with him.

    I'd still have a problem with him, as that Act is unconstitutional.

  • BDB||

    Gun control is dead as a federal issue. Even if the Dems get 60 seats, there are enough southern and especially western Democrats that care enough about getting re-elected that it really doesn't mattwe what Obama thinks.

  • Loupeznik||

    It seems it's common for politicians who don't like this or that constitutional right to simply redefine it. In that way, I think Obama believes in The Second Amendment. For all of us who have a different definition, we need to re-inspect our line in the sand and decide what we as individuals are going to do about it when it is crossed.

  • ||

    joe, you're the one who keeps making stupid fucking statements like "he [only] wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."

    Oh, did I? See, I thought I deliberately picked two absurd extremes in order to make the point that the argument is sufficiently vague as to encompass them both. But, apparently, I was actually arguing something I've known to be false for several years.

    This is pathetic. If I'd posted exactly the same argument as Fred the Libertarian, you would have clapped me on the back and agreed that By itself, that could mean anything from absurd example A to absurd example B.

    Cripes, everyone turns into Gil Martin on gun threads.

  • ||

    Corruption is pretty popular in northern Illinois. I hope we don't have to accept that, too.

  • Elemenope||

    And, Elemenope, if we charged $5k a pop to vote (rather than promise you benefits for the right vote), few would participate.

    Apparently you prefer to be handed privileges rather than have the ability to rationally exercise rights.


    You need to listen to more comedians. You risk taking a quote from a routine as a serious policy suggestion, as you have here. :)

  • Elemenope||

    Gun control is dead as a federal issue. Even if the Dems get 60 seats, there are enough southern and especially western Democrats that care enough about getting re-elected that it really doesn't matter what Obama thinks.

    That is the one reason why, for me, this is not a deal breaker. I just am annoyed that they would go further to pander on obvious falsehoods. They had done pretty well, in comparison with their adversaries, on this metric.

  • Asharak||

    On a related note, I like how the freepers view five-day waiting periods for guns as a Nazi-esque infringement on their rights, but then they'll say that Bush should declare martial law without any shred of irony (yes, I've seen that posted at Free Republic more than once).

  • BDB||

    Did America magically transform into Arkansas when Bill Clinton was elected?

  • ||

    Ahhhh!!!!!! The stupid! It burns!!!!

    Well that settles it. Popular opinion outweighs constitutionally protected rights.

    So, let me get this straight. Person A says Obama's inaction demonstratesd a commitment to gun control. Person B notes that his inaction was the politically popular one. Person A forgets that his point was about Obama's motivations and opinions, and pretends that there is an argument about the relationship between rightness and popularity going on?

    What is wrong with you?

  • ||

    In 1999, Barack proposed a number of federal gun restrictions, that he fortunately was not in a position to put forward directly. Included among them was a 500 percent tax on ammo, ban on gun stores within 5 miles of where anybody lives, $afety devices that enable only the owner of a gun to fire it, banning the sale of non-antique guns at gun shows. He's a douche.

    Chicago Defender, Dec. 13, 1999

  • ||

    Seriously, look at this statement:

    By itself, that could mean anything from "he wants to ban all guns" to "he wants background checks for the purchase of belt-fed machine guns."

    Everybody who reads this as an assertion that one or the other of those positions is the existing law of the land, please don't reproduce.

  • ||

    In 1999, Barack Obama had not articulated an individual-rights reading of the Second Amendment.

    In 1999, George Bush wanted us to have a humble foreign policy.

  • ||

    http://www.exposeobama.com/guns.html

    Runs down a list of BO's 2nd amendment gun crimes. If you don't like the sources, just find the same info elsewhere.

    (another mtg coming up - later)

  • Curious||

    What's the word for someone who wants a courtesy extended to him that he refuses to extend to others?

  • ||

    Cripes, everyone turns into Gil Martin on gun threads.

    Not everbody. Some people (at least one) are attempting to say the campaign ad is not an outright, in your face, lie.

  • Elemenope||

    In 1999, Barack Obama had not articulated an individual-rights reading of the Second Amendment.

    In 1999, George Bush wanted us to have a humble foreign policy.


    Point, I guess. But it's a helluva leap from "we shouldn't take at face value the things that they say" to "we should assume that what they actually believe remains unspoken".

  • ||

    The NRA said and did nothing when Jim Crow laws prohibited blacks from owning firearms.



    Oh, really?

  • ||

    Maybe I'm taking the easy way out here, but I take Obama's stance to be one of supposedly practical regulation, i.e., if you live in a city you have the right to a disassembled cap gun, and if you live in the country you can have a tank, and the suburbs are somewhere in between.

    This can't hurt Obama politically, because the people in the cities who lose out on gun rights are the very people who elect the people doing the regulating.

  • BDB||

    If we're going to use statements from back when Limp Bizkit was at the top of the music charts, then McCain has a lot of explaining to do about his position on guns, too.

  • ||

    Elemenope,

    I think George Bush really meant it when he said we should have a humble foreign policy. Such a position was completely consistent with what he had said and done before that. I think George Bush's position evolved based on events, and after he started associating more with people of his own party that had a different position. As has been noted above, Democrats in the US Senate are a different breed from Democrats in the Illinois Senate.

    "we should assume that what they actually believe remains unspoken". First, I'm not the one arguing that we should assume a certain position; rather, I'm arguing the opposite, against several people who ARE arguing that we should assume a certain position. Second, his individual-rights interpretation is not unspoken. Third, if we are to take his inaction in the face of Illinois' gun laws as significant, how should we read his inaction while serving the US Senate? Personally, I think the answer to that third one is that both are not terribly illuminating, as he seems to have just gone along to get along on the issue.

  • MAX HATS||

    The practicality of gun ownership for most gun owners is that guns are just very expensive toys.


    There.

    I said it.


    Anyone who votes primarily on the lines of still being able to buy their preferred variety of toy is a child.

    I'm a marine reservist. My unit is a combat unit. We've been over there, we're going back, and being fluent with a rifle is a critical life skill. But even for me, do I really need an AR-15? It'd be nice, but damn, it's expensive for what would really be 10% training tool and 90% toy.

    I have probably the best reason for weapon ownership there is short of subsistence hunting, and I don't really need one. Most gun owners I meet just like collecting guns. That's fine. I totally support them. But it's a toy.

    Cue pile on.

  • ||

    ...(yes, I've seen that posted at Free Republic more than once).



    Oh, shit, I thought this was Reason.com. I mean, joe never posted at Free Republic, did he?

    Oh well I'm off, then.

  • Elemenope||

    Lamar, there is absolutely no question that Obama's stance has practical electoral utility. What is at issue is the nonsense about him supporting "gun rights" rather than a sliding scale of "gun privileges" depending upon where a person finds him or herself living.

  • ||

    If we're going to use statements from back when Limp Bizkit was at the top of the music charts, then McCain has a lot of explaining to do about his position on guns, too.



    I could go through and pick out all the posts on this thread that have pointed out that very thing. Or you could have just bothered to read them.

    Oh right, here at Free Republic, we're just a bunch of RedTeam Bushbots.

  • Elemenope||

    MAX HATS --

    I generally agree. I just don't think that the state has any interest in messing with people's toys. Especially when some guy wrote a specific protection in for this particular type of toy in the Constitution.

    Also, I can envision many scenarios (mostly catastrophic ones) in which a gun's utility to the average guy would jump several orders of magnitude. It's better to have a gun and not need it than need a gun and not have it, if you know what I mean.

  • ||

    As someone who isn't in the bubble, the fact that Obama's understanding of the scope of gun rights doesn't go far enough for the staff at and commenters at Reason magazine gives me very little useful data.

    Way to ignore the specifics of the post, joe.

    Obama's reading of the Second Amendment is so narrow that he sees no constitutional problem with the Washington, D.C., gun ban that was overturned by the Supreme Court or a similar law in Chicago.

    The militia reading was the majority position in the Democratic Party and the law of the land when Obama rejected it.

    The "militia reading" (which I take to mean the collective rights reading) was never the law of the land.

    The practicality of gun ownership for most gun owners is that guns are just very expensive toys.

    Of course, the practicality of owning a newspaper or TV station for most media owners is that these are just machines for making money. Makes no difference whatever to free speech rights.

  • ||

    Way to ignore the specifics of the post, joe.

    You could read the thread before commenting, you know.

    The "militia reading" (which I take to mean the collective rights reading) was never the law of the land. Nah, that whole Miller thing and all of the scholarship that came after it was all my imagination. The individual rights reading was always the predominant school of thought, and that's why Heller was such an insignificant decision.

  • BDB||

    Issac--

    Just pointing it out again since the poster who used a 1999 statement seemed to skip those posts, too.

  • Elemenope||

    I think George Bush really meant it when he said we should have a humble foreign policy. Such a position was completely consistent with what he had said and done before that. I think George Bush's position evolved based on events, and after he started associating more with people of his own party that had a different position. As has been noted above, Democrats in the US Senate are a different breed from Democrats in the Illinois Senate.

    Interesting point. I have rather always read GWB's initial foreign policy as the cautious default position of a guy who hadn't thought very hard about the topic. A good default position, to be sure, but easily changed by virtue of it being a placeholder.

    Second, his individual-rights interpretation is not unspoken.

    No, it's rather logically absurd. Which, you have to admit, is not much of an improvement over "unspoken".

    Personally, I think the answer to that third one is that both are not terribly illuminating, as he seems to have just gone along to get along on the issue.

    "Go along to get along" on issues of constitutional rights is, in my book, as bad as being against said rights full bore. Rights are fragile *because* they are maintained in opposition to the power of the state. It's like a canoe being paddled upriver; you stop paddling, and you're gonna start moving backwards.

  • Elemenope||

    joe, I have to agree with RCD somewhat that Miller was muddy on the issue and the following scholarship was pretty thin precisely because Miller was all anyone really had to go on, besides two hundred year old mutterings of some dead guys (living in a different context and dealing with different problems).

  • ||

    LMNOP,

    No, it's rather logically absurd. It's only absurd if you assume that he adheres to a the position that the DC gun ban was legit, a statement he later said was a misstatement. Or, if you wish to expand "logically absurd" to mean that any restrictions whatsoever as obviously and inarguably inconsistent with any individual-rights reading.

    "Go along to get along" on issues of constitutional rights is, in my book, as bad as being against said rights full bore. Really? You'd have difficulty choosing between a candidate who didn't seem to have a consistent position on this issue and one that argued passionately that there were no constitutional problems with efforts to ban all firearms? I don't believe you.

    Also, RCD didn't argue that Miller was muddy and the following scholarship thin. He argued that the Miller-influenced, collective-rights reading of the 2nd amendment was not the predominant school of thought regarding the constitutionality of gun control laws between the 30s and the mid-00s. Whether you like that school of thought or not, it was. That's why Heller was such a big deal.

  • robc||

    This is pathetic. If I'd posted exactly the same argument as Fred the Libertarian, you would have clapped me on the back and agreed that By itself, that could mean anything from absurd example A to absurd example B.


    No matter how often you repeat this, it isnt true. If you had posted that same thing thing as Fred, I would have asked you (joe) why you were posting as Fred. You seem to be the only person in America (or at least on Reason) who cant read between the lines and understand what Obama means.

  • BDB||

    Oh, I can read between the lines and figure out Obama's position just fine.

    It goes something like this:

    "I'm going to do JUST reasonable enough on gun rights to get the electoral votes of VA, NC, CO, NM, and NV, and not much else".

  • Elemenope||

    Really? You'd have difficulty choosing between a candidate who didn't seem to have a consistent position on this issue and one that argued passionately that there were no constitutional problems with efforts to ban all firearms? I don't believe you.

    You misunderstand. I wouldn't have trouble picking between the two for electoral purposes *if he were a non-incumbent*. The problem I see is that identifying a flagrant asshole on some right or other is usually pretty easy, and thus pretty easy to target with an issues-based campaign and/or punish decisively with a coordinated opposition voting effort.

    But, and this is important, his go-along-get-along enablers are the ones who never get electorally punished. And they should, because without them the blowhard never gets anywhere. They are, so to speak, the real problem.

  • ||

    robc,

    The inability to "read between the lines" and percieve things as understood by libertarians is not actually going to qualify me for a parking placard.

    Worst. Peer pressure. Ever.

  • ||

    That is nice Joe but you lost. The court ruled otherwise. It is an individual right. That whole separate but equal thing was real once to just not anymore.

  • No Name Guy||

    Barack Obama supports gun rights.

    In the best Edna Krabappel voice: HA!

  • ||

    John,

    You really need to write a sternly-worded letter to that psychic school, because I've read the 2nd Amendment as an individual right ever since I gave serious thought to question back in '01.

    Didn't somebody say something recently about Team Red meatheads reading things into people's statements that aren't there because they view this issue primarily as a proxy for the culture war? That guy really knows his stuff.

  • BDB||

    Who here thinks Obama is so politically inept that he is going to take all the political capital the Democratic Party carefully accumulated for eight years, and blow it all on Brady Bill Part II so they can get thrown out of Congress in 2010.

    Anyone?

  • Loupeznik||

    MAX HATS

    I could argue that Marines are useless 99.9 percent of the time, except for the .1 percent of the time that they are actually fighting. Guns like Marines, security alarms, fire extinguishers are for that "oh shit" day that may or may not come. You might say that Marines act as a sort of deterrence when they are not actually fighting. You know where I am going with that right?

  • ||

    You could read the thread before commenting, you know.

    I did. You could read the post before commenting.

    Nah, that whole Miller thing and all of the scholarship that came after it was all my imagination.

    Miller had absolutely nothing to say about whether the Second Amendment granted an individual right or a collective right. It addressed only whether a sawed-off shotgun was one of the arms whose keeping and bearing was protected by the amendment, and concluded that it was not.

    The Supreme Court never said one syllable in support of collective rights. The little dicta there was post-Miller was uniformly individual rights.

    The lower courts were always divided on the collective rights reading, so it was never the law of the land.

    Also, RCD didn't argue that Miller was muddy and the following scholarship thin. He argued that the Miller-influenced, collective-rights reading of the 2nd amendment was not the predominant school of thought regarding the constitutionality of gun control laws between the 30s and the mid-00s.

    I didn't say that the collective rights interpretation wasn't "predominant" (whatever that means); I said it wasn't the law of the land. It was based on an intentional misreading of Miller, which applied a militia test to the weapon, not its keeper/bearer.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "It was annoying enough that during The Brave One the cop characters kept referring to a semi-automatic pistol as an automatic pistol.

    And that movie is not by any means the worst offender in the "we can't be bothered to do research for our script" category."

    There are plenty of movies that get things wrong related to guns.

    One of the most annoying that I have seen in numerous movies is when someone has a semi-auto pistol and pulls the trigger to the sound of a "click" and - surprise - he's out of ammo.

    Of course in the real world, the slide locks in the open position after the last round is fired and anyone holding or looking at the gun can plainly see that and know it is empty.

  • ||

    Miller had absolutely nothing to say about whether the Second Amendment granted an individual right or a collective right.

    Which is why I used the phrases that whole Miller thing and all of the scholarship that came after it and the Miller-influenced, collective-rights reading of the 2nd amendment - because Miller was the foundation of the collective-right interpretation, but didn't fully articulate that interpretation in and of itself.

    I didn't say that the collective rights interpretation wasn't "predominant" (whatever that means); I said it wasn't the law of the land. That hair split yet? I don't care whether you want to call it "the law of the land," "the predominant reading," or "my Uncle Fred." Barack Obama articulated an individual rights interpretation of the 2nd Amendment back when most people in his party and My Uncle Fred both adhered to a collective right interpretation. If you have a problem with the veracity of any part of this statement, RC, go ahead and shout it out. Telling me more things I already know about gun control laws and constitutional precedents, on the other hand, probably isn't the best use of your intellect.

    It was based on an intentional misreading of Miller, which applied a militia test to the weapon, not its keeper/bearer. Ah, of course. Nothing that RC considers a misreading of the Constitution could become the predominant doctrine within the judiciary.

    Seriously, it gets really boring to be constantly "corrected" about accurate statements I make by people whose self-esteem requires them to demonstrate superior knowledge of things that go bang bang.

  • ||

    Obama is for gun rights about as much as Hugh Hefner is in favor of abstinence only sex education.

    If Obama is elected he will deny ever being pro-gun and will fight to destroy our gun rights. He has voted against gun rights every time he has had a chance. Why in the hell would he suddenly change now?

    I believe the technical term for this is lying.

  • ||

    Near the beginning of this thread Joe whined:

    "It's always amazing how gun threads lower the collective I.Q. around here."

    Joe's subsequent posts reveal his prophetic prowess.

  • ||

    I get it. It is incredibly fucking important to believe that you know more about guns and stuff than liberals.

    The thing is, I'm smarter and better informed than your average liberal. Assuming that I must not know what I'm talking about is going to get you in trouble.

    It makes it look like you're reaching for a reason to disqualify me from making an argument, so you can yell "Gotcha, joe! Stop saying things!" instead of considering the arguments I make on their merits. But I'm sure that's just my imagination, and no one would ever do that.

  • ||

    True. Clearly, a great many us know far more about "guns and stuff" than you. FYI: Failing about and insulting ever other post isn't, generally,conducive to supporting an argument.

  • MAX HATS||

    Loupeznik -

    If most taxpayers were content with the cost of the marine corps because the marine corps is fun, or their hobby, or because they have a marine corps collection, then I guess you'd have a point.

  • ||

    Rick, you might not know this, but the Assualt Weapons Ban actually applies to semi-automatic rifles, not automatic rifles; and what's more, many of the characteristics used to define an "assult rifle" in that law are actually purely consmetic, and have nothing do with the functionality or lethality of the weapon.

    There, I have written a comment exactly as relevant and responsive as what is typically addressed to me, and what's more, have educated Rick to exactly the same degree as I frequently am by the comments addressed to me on this subject.

  • Someone Get Out The Violins||

    "Despite my constant partisan hackery, I can't understand why people think I'm a partisan hack! It's almost as if they are considering the source of my comments and not judging them on a individual basis! Just like I never do!"

  • ||

    The thing is, I'm smarter and better informed than your average liberal.

    On every single topic? Especially on gun threads? Do you really want someone to google your prior H&R comments about firearms that do not comport with objective reality and repost them here?

    Unless it is your contention that the "average liberal" is even less of an expert about firearms than you, which might be argued at some length ...

  • ||

    Why does Barack Obama hate poor people?:

    As a state legislator, Obama voted against a bill shielding people who use handguns for self-defense in their homes from prosecution for violating local gun registration rules. .

    "Pro-gun-rights" indeed.

  • Bags||

    prolefeed, joe's an expert every subject known to mankind. He's H&R's version of the barber on TNG, Mr. Mott. Trying to refute any claim he makes is futile, so just sit back and relax.

  • Hogan||

    OT - I've only been posting here for a few weeks so my stock of examples is smaller but my favorite demonstration of joe's superior wisdom on anything and everything was here when he piped in to tell me "In my head I know more than you about the details of your job - FYI." Personal beef.

  • Warty||

    Hogan: that's not off topic. Half the fun of this place is watching joe furiously try to prove how smart he is to strangers on the internet.

  • ||

    "I've only been posting here for a few weeks so my stock of examples is smaller but my favorite demonstration of joe's superior wisdom on anything and everything was here when he piped in to tell me "In my head I know more than you about the details of your job - FYI."

    Not only was joe correct in that assessment (in a lot of places at least), but if I'm not mistaken, it was also within his area of expertise.

  • Hogan||

    dunno what his area of expertise is - but his assessment was tautological. the one is kept separate from the other because otherwise they wouldn't be separate! that's not a justification for the policy. have to go 5:00

  • ||

    I get it. It is incredibly fucking important to believe that you know more about guns and stuff than liberals.

    Now that Gun rights seem to be solidifying into something that resembles what is written in the constitution is it ok to start making fun of gun fetishists, or is it to soon?

  • Warty||

    joshua corning - remember, we have lots of guns, and we're really touchy about our hobby, and most of us are dangerous loners. Mock all you like.

  • ||

    remember, we have lots of guns, and we're really touchy about our hobby, and most of us are dangerous loners. Mock all you like.

    Yeah I was referring to the political fall out. If i was scared for my personal safety in regards to offending gun nerds i would be anti-gun.

    You guys are slightly less harmless then the pot nerds....with the pot nerds you might one day discover your car has been converted into a bong.

  • ||

    Of course in the real world, the slide locks in the open position after the last round is fired and anyone holding or looking at the gun can plainly see that and know it is empty.



    Umm, no, there are many pistols that do not have that feature.

    It depends on whether the manufacturer designed it that way.

    Now if you meant most high quality modern pistols you'd be right.

  • ||

    Isaac Bartram | October 8, 2008, 6:06pm | #

    Of course in the real world, the slide locks in the open position after the last round is fired and anyone holding or looking at the gun can plainly see that and know it is empty.

    Umm, no, there are many pistols that do not have that feature.

    It depends on whether the manufacturer designed it that way.

    Now if you meant most high quality modern pistols you'd be right.


    Yeah, even the high quality ones that do have that feature, it depends how you hold the weapon and such.

  • LarryA||

    But it doesn't make much difference. McCain is as bad on this issue (gun show "loophole" anyone?) and worse on others.

    But:
    1. McCain selected a moose-hunting member of the NRA as a running mate instead of a F-rated Senator currently sponsoring gun-ban legislation.
    2. McCain was a Senator in 1994 when the first "assault rifle" ban cost the Democrats the House and Senate. Obama was still in the Illinois Legislature ten years later, when the ban expired.
    3. McCain will have divided government, a Democratic Congress, to contend with.

    Unfortunately at this point the election is Obama's to lose. Which is one reason gun sales are way up.

    There are still mistakes, but almost all military people (and quite a few cops) keep their fingers off triggers; aim properly; etc.

    But watch them stand around and point their guns at each other.

    If you haven't noticed, gun laws are pretty popular in Illinois.

    If you haven't noticed, gun laws are pretty popular in Illinois Chicago. Typical One Big City Tail Wags State Dog issue.

    The practicality of gun ownership for most gun owners is that guns are just very expensive toys.

    Then there's Jeanne Assam. Several million of her fellow concealed handgun licensees concur.

    Nah, that whole Miller thing and all of the scholarship that came after it was all my imagination. The individual rights reading was always the predominant school of thought, and that's why Heller was such an insignificant decision.

    I've been active in the gun issue since the Gun Control Act of 1968. I remember when the collective rights theory first surfaced, c 1979. That's why the D.C. ban, passed shortly prior to then, was disguised as a registration scheme. The individual right precluded a straight-up ban.

    The same reasoning resulted in the 1929 NFA being passed as a tax measure.

    Who here thinks Obama is so politically inept that he is going to take all the political capital the Democratic Party carefully accumulated for eight years, and blow it all on Brady Bill Part II so they can get thrown out of Congress in 2010.

    When prodded by Kennedy, Schumer, Feinstein, et al? [hand goes up]

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Umm, no, there are many pistols that do not have that feature.

    Now if you meant most high quality modern pistols you'd be right."

    Which would be most of the ones used in the movies that are being shown as if they don't function that way.

    How modern is modern anyway?

    The Colt .45 ACP has been around for quite a few years now and it has that feature.

  • ||

    if we charged $5k a pop to vote (rather than promise you benefits for the right vote), few would participate.



    Hmmm... how about $5,000 to vote, or purchase a bullet -- choose one? That would make an interesting society.

  • ||

    "Why does Barack Obama hate poor people?:

    As a state legislator, Obama voted against a bill shielding people who use handguns for self-defense in their homes from prosecution for violating local gun registration rules."

    Not quite. The law created an affirmative defense to anyone charged with the violation of local handgun laws if they could show that they had used the gun for self-defense.

    Now, local handgun registration laws may be wrong from the get-go, but it's not that unreasonable to see why someone who thought they were OK would not gut them by creating this affirmative defense.

    The law:
    Sec. 24-10. Municipal ordinance regulating firearms; affirmative defense to a violation. It is an affirmative defense to a violation of a municipal ordinance that prohibits, regulates, or restricts the private ownership of firearms if the individual who is charged with the violation used the firearm in an act of self-defense or defense of another as defined in Sections 7-1 and 7-2 of this Code when on his or her land or in his or her abode or fixed place of business.

  • ||

    I mean that law seems to imply that if I had a machine gun in my home that as long as I could show that I had used it for self-defense then no criminal charge for the possession of the machine gun would lie. I can see how someone could vote against that without hating on the usual gun rights most of us enjoy.

    It sounds like a badly worded bill made to respond to some situation where some a-hole cops showed up to a citizen's home who had to defend himself and used their discretion so stupidly that they arrested the damn guy on a gun charge. But shit you think they would have restricted it to matters of registration and such or certain covered firearms, because as it is it was pretty extreme...

  • ||

    Assuming that I must not know what I'm talking about is going to get you in trouble.



    Not if you're patient.

  • ||

    As kwais points out, even if the gun has it, whether it works or not depends on a number of factors.

    One of them is maintenance. I doubt that many of the street thugs out there bother to clean and oil their pieces the way I do mine. And I have some old ones that frankly don't always work quite right in that regard.

    The Colt .45 ACP has been around for quite a few years now and it has that feature.



    And it was probably the first. But then John
    Browning was a genius.

    I own several European pieces of much more recent vintage and they do not have the feature at all. One of them does have it due to a previous owner installing a kit and while it has made it a much more functional weapon it has destroyed its value as a collector's item.

  • ||

    Rick, you might not know this, but the Assualt Weapons Ban actually applies to semi-automatic rifles, not automatic rifles; and what's more, many of the characteristics used to define an "assult rifle" in that law are actually purely consmetic, and have nothing do with the functionality or lethality of the weapon.



    Obama believes in America's tradition on responsible hunting. He believes hunting rifles belong in the wilderness with America's hunters, but also believes we need to keep AK-47s off our city streets. Obama supports the federal Assault Weapons Ban, which would keep assault weapons on our battlefields and off our streets.

    The above quote is linked to and taken directly from Obama's official website (scroll to the bottom.)

  • ||

    ...but also believes we need to keep AK-47s off our city streets. Obama supports the federal Assault Weapons Ban, which would keep assault weapons on our battlefields and off our streets.



    Wow, last I saw the number of AK-47s being used for street crime was...oh...about zero, right?

    But I'm sure joe will be here directly to straighten us out, mediageek.

  • ||

    Here is Barack Obama's track record on gun control.

    It's pretty bad. He is one of the worst presidential candidates on this issue. McCain isn't perfect, but he is very far removed from Obama on this subject.

  • ||

    Of course, the fact that he was on the Board of Directors of The Joyce Foundation doesn't score him any pro-gun points, either.

  • ||

    People I'd like to meet:

    1. A gun control advocate who agrees that the 2nd Amendment prohibits gun control, and who therefore advocates a constitutional amendment allowing gun control.

    2. A gun control opponent who thinks the 2nd Amendment does not prohibit gun control, but that gun control is bad policy for other reasons.

  • ||

    I don't fit into the second category, as I have come to believe that the second amendment does prohibit most forms of gun control.

    However, there are plenty of policy reasons for opposing it. Most of them stemming from the fact that gun control is generally ineffective at curbing rates of violent crime.

  • Dave W.||

    Wow, last I saw the number of AK-47s being used for street crime was...oh...about zero, right?

    http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&q=ak-47&btnG=Search+News

  • ||

    For eight years, 1994- 2001 he funded antigun organizations and "researchers." with millions as a Director of the Joyce Foundation

    Once in political office, he voted to allow lawsuits against the gun industry; to renew the Clinton "assault weapon" ban; to ban almost all rifle ammo. He has endorsed a complete ban on handgun ownership. He voted to uphold several gun bans and to criminally prosecute people who use firearms in self-defense. He also proposed to ban gun stores within 5 miles of a school or park which would eliminate almost every gun store in America.

    He supports the DC v Heller decision?
    So, why did he and Biden refuse to sign the Congressional amicus brief supporting it?
    McCain and 305 other members of Congress signed.

    Sarah Pailin proudly announced Alaska's Attorney General joined an amicus brief along with 30 other States Attorneys General supporting Heller. Illinois and Delaware did not join that one either.
    Delaware's Attorney General is Joseph R. "Beau" Biden, III

    Barack Obama and Joe Biden will certainly continue an impressive record of infringing on "the right of the People to keep and bear arms."

    To learn more about his position on gun rights, including videos, visit
    http://www.sportsmenforobama.org

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "One of them is maintenance. I doubt that many of the street thugs out there bother to clean and oil their pieces the way I do mine. And I have some old ones that frankly don't always work quite right in that regard."

    It seems to me that if a gun is so dirty that it won't cycle the last round properly and lock the slide open, it would have already jammed on a previous round with the slide partially open and the cartridge case stuck in the gun.

  • ||

    Wow, last I saw the number of AK-47s being used for street crime was...oh...about zero, right?

    http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&q=ak-47&btnG=Search+News



    I'll ignore, for the moment, that most reporters can't tell an AK-47 from a bunch of carrots, and simply point out that if you take the time to do the research, by the ATF's own numbers, AK-47 style rifles don't even show up anywhere near the top of the list of most-used crime guns.

    If you want to ban the guns that are most often used in crime, you're going to have to support bans on 12 gauge shotguns, .22, .38, and 9mm handguns.

  • ||

    For those who are buying into the "Obama supports the 2nd Amendment" argument, I'd like to see some beef.

    Show me one piece of legislation he's supported that's pro-gun.

  • Dave W.||

    GeekSter's burned.

  • Scooby||

    Dave W.,

    The vast majority of the items in your news search were from 3rd world countries and conflict zones (South Africa and Kosovo pop out in the first page). The ones in the US are criminal possession cases, which are violations of gun control statutes that many of us would argue shouldn't be on the books in the first place.

    Got any crimes in the US, and by "crime" I mean something with a victim, not a possession beef?

  • Bah. Here is just from page 1||

    New Orleans Police Find AK-47, Crack Cocaine During Stop
    WDSU, LA - 18 hours ago
    NEW ORLEANS -- New Orleans police found eight guns, including an AK-47, following a routine traffic stop on Wednesday. Officers pulled a car over at Broad ...

    . . .

    Sky News
    AK47 Youth Held Over Road Terror
    Sky News, UK - Oct 5, 2008
    A youth filmed terrifying motorists with an AK47 rifle has been arrested following an investigation by Sky News Online. Friends of the yob filmed the ...
    Fresh warning on airguns as appeal fails to curb incidents The Herald
    all 5 news articles »

    . . .

    The Plain Dealer - cleveland.com
    AK-47 and ammo seized in drug bust
    The Plain Dealer - cleveland.com, OH - Oct 7, 2008
    AKRON -- Police found a loaded AK-47 and hundreds of rounds of ammunition while arresting a local man for drug dealing. Dontea Bushner, 30, is in Summit ...
    Akron police recover assault rifle, ammunition at house Akron Beacon Journal
    all 2 news articles »

    . . .

    Eden man arrested in city with AK-47, six handguns
    Buffalo News, United States - Oct 6, 2008
    An Eden man who police say had an AK-47 in his truck faces menacing and weapons possession charges after his arrest Sunday night. Craig T. Howard, 23, ...

  • ||

    You know one of the things that bothers me most that they do in movies, perhaps even more than the magazines with neverending bullets.

    What bothers me most is when they rack a gun for effect, sometimes the same gun twice, because the dude with the gun needed to show he was angry AGAIN!. And no bullet pops out, so, I guess it was an unloaded gun.

    The never ending magazine thing is annoying I suppose because I want one. These dudes in movies get to go around all slick with no spare magazines ruining their form fitting clothing, and they get into gunfights for longer than I can with my 10 to 16 spare fully loaded magazines.

    I guess the bad thing about magazines that hold so many rounds, is that when they do run out, you have to throw the whole gun away.

  • Scooby||

    Dave,

    You listed 4 weapons possession cases in the US, plus something from Sky News UK, which is not subject to the jurisdiction of the US Congress.

    A laundry list of possession cases (even possession by big bad scary drug dealers) is not evidence of a vast crime wave justifying a ban. How many banks have been robbed by AK wielding criminals? How many innocent by-standers have been massacred? How many heroic cops have been cut down in the prime of their lives?

    Let me know when you find a crime with a victim, instead of a bunch of paperwork violations.

  • Scooby||

    Didn't think so.

  • ||

    The more I read about Obama's stance on the second amendment, and hear from him about it, the more convinced I become that the man and his supporters are either stupid, or liars. Or they have horrifically underestimated the intelligence of people who know the difference between a gun grabbing, elitist, lying scumbag lawyer from Chicago, and a respected officer in the US Navy and a Governor from Alaska who know too.

    Obama is for the second amendment like I am for Obama's tax increases and spending increases. NOT!

  • wizard of oz books||

    With many new announcement about the wizard of oz movies in the news, you might want to consider starting to obtain Wizard of Oz book series either as collectible or investment at RareOzBooks.com.

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