Sports

That's Just A Little Bit More than the Law Will Allow

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Legal blogger Josh Blackman highlights a revealing passage from a L.A. Times story on pro basketball star Gilbert Arenas' illegal gun troubles. Here's the Times (emphasis added):

Washington Wizards star Gilbert Arenas says he took unloaded guns from his locker in a "misguided effort to play a joke" on a teammate. Arenas released a written statement Monday after meeting with law enforcement officials. Arenas' lawyer says the player voluntarily met with prosecutors and detectives and answered every question during a two-hour interview. In his statement, Arenas repeated his assertion that he brought four guns to the Verizon Center to store in his locker in order to get them out of his house and away from his children. He said he mistakenly believed that recent changes in District of Columbia law made it legal for him to store unloaded guns there.

As Blackman notes, "Arenas undoubtedly is referring to Heller here. Amazing how the landmark case, even if misunderstood by this athlete, has made it into the cultural zeitgeist."

Still, Arenas isn't without his champions. The Legal Times blog quotes Philip Van Cleave of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, who says, "Everything Gilbert Arenas did in D.C. would be hunky dory in Virginia. On one side of the bridge over the Potomac, he's a law abiding citizen, but step into in D.C. and you can be viewed as a dangerous criminal."

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  1. …but step into in D.C. and you can be viewed as a dangerous criminal.

    Well, it’s certainly true for Congress.

  2. “On one side of the bridge over the Potomac, he’s a law abiding citizen, but step into in D.C. and you can be viewed as a dangerous criminal.”

    Let’s hear it for states rights!

    1. The Second Amendment doesn’t need to rely on the 10th.

      And, of course, D.C. is not a state.

      1. “The Second Amendment doesn’t need to rely on the 10th.” ?

        “D.C. is not a state.” Change it to the broader “local rule” if that makes you feel better…

        1. Why? The right to bear arms shouldn’t change when you cross a border. I am not one of these libertarians who think “local rule” is best. I think everyone should be free everywhere.

          That said, if the Verizon Center wants to kick Arenas out of their property or the NBA has conditions for employment, that’s fine, but the government need not be involved.

        2. Let’s hear it for the laboratory of the states and District, sure. We can easily see how effective D.C.’s laws and local rules are.

          Eh, the local rules aren’t so bad. You can get guns in Virginia and liquor in DC. Having a choice seems better to me than a uniform rule, which could go against me; I can manage better with less risk.

    2. Given the supremacy clause and more specifically the privileges and immunities clause and the use of both in enforcing other portions of the Constitution you really don’t have a point.

    3. I’d like to know about a state where the 1st Amendment doesn’t apply to retarded trolls like MNG. Where it would be legal to beat the fuck out them every time they opened their mouths. Especially when they think that is fair.

      As for VCDL, they are great and I highly support that comment in support of Arenas.

      DC is a shithole filled with scum like Barry and Obama. Arenas adds class compared to those bozos.

  3. Everything Gilbert Arenas did in D.C. would be hunky dory in Virginia

    Everything? I think even Arenas’s current version of the story has him breaking the law.

    Virginia Code ? 18.2-282 – A. It shall be unlawful for any person to point, hold or brandish any firearm…in such manner as to reasonably induce fear in the mind of another…

    1. If a liberal is in the vicinity, you are in violation of this law because guns are scary. Fear in the mind of another doesn’t mean it’s reasonable.

    2. Hmm. Does “point” include “setting it down so that it points in a direction that induces fear in someone when they see it just lying there, not being held?”

  4. The Duke boys would have just jumped that bridge to get away from the law.

    1. I was picturing Arenas in the General Lee with the Dukes, jumping the river and changing from law abiding citizens to criminals in mid-air.

      1. I am picturing Agent Zero with Randolph and Mortimer at the Commodities Exchange selling a little FCOJ.

        1. A fine film.

    2. awesome.

  5. He figured that since there were no Bullets in the locker room everything was fine.

  6. He’s a dumb ass.

  7. I’m over it. This seems so obvious, yet nobody gets it:

    Pro athletes don’t keep guns in their lockers because they’re “thugs”, they do it because they’re rich, successful, and visible. Put another way, they’re the type of guys who thugs target. And now it’s open season, since the leagues are more or less forbidding them from protecting themselves

    1. Further, shitholes like DC don’t let people protect themselves.

      And even worse you can’t sue the fucking lazy DC police and government when you get mugged, raped, and murdered.

      Any government or government official that does not allow citizens to protect themselves should be held criminally and civilly liable.

  8. Rich, successful, and visible thugs.

  9. An employee brings a gun to work, threatens another employee with the gun, his employer suspends him.

    How exactly does this violate Arenas’s second amendment rights?

    1. I think the second amendment issue arises from the police investigation and threatened prosecution, not the actions of the employer.

  10. According to ESPN, Al Sharpton is declaring that the NBA is racist because it has not taken stronger action against Arenas. Sharpton claims that white players would have had the book thrown at them by the NBA if they had brought weapons into the locker room, but that Arenas is getting softer treatment because “this is the type of conduct we expect from blacks.”

    Sharpton must stay up very late at night thinking this stuff up.

    1. Amazing, he finally found a way to checkmate every situation concerning race. When blacks get the harsher treatment, it’s because of racism, but when they don’t, it’s because of racism.

      Although, give him credit, after Obama’s election he was almost unemployed. And being (un)employed would’ve been racist either way.

    2. It looks as though he’s trying to cop Bush’s “soft bigotry of low expectations” line without crediting the author.

      It’s like those two were made for each other. They should get a reality-show apartment in the city together. It’d be like the Odd Couple, and it would distract them from doing any more damage.

    3. It’s a win-win situation for Sharpton. If Arenas is under-punished Sharpton gets to yell about how people expect these things from blacks”. If Arenas is over-punished then Sharpton gets to yell about how blacks are always punished more than whites.

      Sharpton is like Hannity, Jason Lewis, and other political (talking) heads, he’ll find some way to complain and make himself better (more viewers, etc).

    4. Al Sharpton has killed people.

      I will have little to no faith in the ‘black community’ (whatever the fuck that is) until he is strung up by ‘them’.

  11. According to ESPN, Al Sharpton is declaring that the NBA is racist because it has not taken stronger action against Arenas. Sharpton claims that white players would have had the book thrown at them by the NBA if they had brought weapons into the locker room, but that Arenas is getting softer treatment because “this is the type of conduct we expect from blacks.”

    Ow, my head.

  12. I always thought white players would be excused because they are just “hunters” and/or they keep guns to protect themselves from scary black guys.

    Most “law and order conservatives”/NRA types would celebrate a white dude who shot a black “intruder,” but if a black dude carries a weapon ( even unloaded)he is some thug criminal. Nevermind that Gilbert Arenas is probably the least threatening black guy in the NBA.

    This is one of those issues where we libertarians are pretty much alone. “liberals” hate all guns and “conservatives” support gun rights for white guys. But some black dude carrying unloaded guns is a thug who needs the book thrown at him because ” guns kill people” and he made the terrible mistake of play shooting someone with his finger.

    A black guy can’t carry a gun and he certainly can’t smile and joke. he needs to show “remorse” for the possession of some object that has nothing remotely wrong with it.


    1. Most “law and order conservatives”/NRA types would celebrate a white dude who shot a black “intruder,” but if a black dude carries a weapon ( even unloaded)he is some thug criminal.

      f u

    2. I always thought white players would be excused because they are just “hunters” and/or they keep guns to protect themselves from scary black guys.

      Karl Malone is a hunter and no one cared about his guns. Of course, he was in Utah. Most black people live in areas with gun control, and support politicians that support it, so I’m sure that there is disparate impact even apart from race.

      Most “law and order conservatives”/NRA types would celebrate a white dude who shot a black “intruder,” but if a black dude carries a weapon ( even unloaded)he is some thug criminal.

      This completely ignoring the quote from Philip Van Cleave of the Virginia Citizens Defense League.

    3. You sir, are confused, a jackass, or a racist. I’m not sure which.

      I am firmly in the “law and order conservatives/NRA type”, as are many of those I spend time with. Yet I have never heard a hint of racism out of any of them.

      My attitude, being a white gun owner, in this case is that if he pointed a potentially loaded gun at someone, he should be reprimanded by the team, and had it explained to him that that was fucking stupid. If he didn’t point one at anybody (I didn’t read the story), then who cares. If it’s somehow illegal for him to have the guns there, tell him to have them removed. Race has nothing whatsoever to do with it.

    4. Most “law and order conservatives”/NRA types would celebrate a white dude who shot a black “intruder,” but if a black dude carries a weapon ( even unloaded)he is some thug criminal.

      You Sir are a fucking idiot

      Most law and order NRA types are the first ones to point out that it is the urban jungle where criminals are the only ones with guns. They also point out that areas that allow law abiding citizens are also the areas with lower crime rates.

      It is not conservatives that have outlawed gun ownership in DC.

  13. OK< this is starting to make pretty good sense dude. I mean really.

    RT
    http://www.total-anonymity.at.tc

  14. The Legal Times blog quotes Philip Van Cleave of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, who says, “Everything Gilbert Arenas did in D.C. would be hunky dory in Virginia.

    I’m a staunch supporter of gun rights and believe in a broad interpretation of the 2nd, but this is an idiotic comment.

    You don’t point a gun (loaded or unloaded) at someone unless you have a damn good reason to do so. There was nothing justifiable or defensive about Arenas’ stupidity.

    1. Seriously. My thought was “he may not be a dangerous criminal, but he’s a dangerous idiot.”

      Last time I checked, former NBA player Jayson Williams was still awaiting trial for killing his driver while “playing a joke.”

      1. Exactly. The fool broke so many basic gun safety rules he’d be suspended or fired if his employer was Smith & Wesson.

        1. But not if he were employed by the DEA. Remember, they’re experts.

    2. When was a gun pointing?

      Or do you have a problem with literacy?

  15. isnt Gilbert making his wayeee the only way he knows how?

  16. If you read most of the accounts of the event, Gilbert never pointed a gun at anyone. He placed unloaded guns (pieces of metal when they don’t have bullets) by Crittendon’s locker with a note that said “pick one.” This came a couple of days later after Crittendon threatened to shoot Gilbert in his gimpy left knee. It was a stupid joke and violated many gun safety rules–but last time I checked gun safety rules aren’t laws. His employer, unlike the government, has the right to do whatever it wants to him.

    1. Oh, well since he’s being persecuted by the government, that changes him from a dumbass to a martyr.

      1. Oh, well since he’s being persecuted by the government, that changes him from a dumbass to a martyr.

        Isn’t this the standard civil liberties approach, say with marching Nazis or people with any other disgusting habits?

      2. Bringing to mind the Iron Law:

        You aren’t free unless you are free to be wrong.

  17. Most “law and order conservatives”/NRA types would celebrate a white dude who shot a black “intruder,” but if a black dude carries a weapon ( even unloaded)he is some thug criminal.

    Don’t know many NRA types, do you?

  18. No kidding. Reminds of a gun show I went to, where the Pink Pistols had a booth. At first, they were pretty lonely, but by the time we left, they had a crowd.

  19. On the lighter side..changing the team name to from “Bullets” to “Wizards” sure made a difference. It was always the first part of “Washington Bullets” that had the stronger association with violence.

    1. Going with “Wizards” for a team name below the Mason-Dixon line was a grand idea.

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