Liberalism

A Suicide Pact

Can the U.S. afford the Bill of Rights?

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Earlier this week the Fort Worth Star-Telegram published one of the more astounding documents of our age. It was written by Joaquin "the Hatchet" Zapata—a notorious enforcer for the Zetas drug cartel, which controls much of the cocaine trade across the border of southern Texas.

Resembling nothing so much as an army field manual for mules and midlevel traffickers, the "Instrucciones" on shipping cocaine include a lengthy section on what to do if captured by U.S. authorities. Going into great detail about the legal rights of criminal defendants in America, it advises couriers to clam up, ask for an attorney, claim irregularities in the search (the exclusionary rule won't allow tainted evidence in court), and so on.

Naturally, right-wingers have jumped on the story. "The pendulum has swung too far in the narcoterrorists' favor," intoned GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty. Michele Bachmann demanded that Democrats join Republicans in rolling back any "technicalities" that work in the drug lords' favor.

As usual, Sarah Palin went further than most: "The Constitution of this great country of ours that I love so much is not some kind of suicide deal," she said (misquoting the late Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson), "and that is why I am urging our Congress today to repeal back the Fourth"—i.e., to draw a blue line through the Fourth Amendment's prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizures.

Palin is right. If drug dealers are exploiting our freedoms, then we no longer can afford them. Right?

Ha! Only kidding. None of that really happened. (Had you there for a second though, right?)

As you may have guessed by now, the foregoing is a rather ham-fisted parable. There are no Instrucciones, and Republicans have not been waving them about as proof that America should repeal the Bill of Rights.

Yet we are hearing just that sort of argument—in nature, if not in degree—from progressives right now.
Several days ago Adam Gadahn, an American-born spokesman for Al Qaeda, urged would-be jihadists to buy guns at gun shows: "America is absolutely awash with easily obtainable firearms," he said. "You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card. So what are you waiting for?"

Within a couple of femtoseconds, progressive America began quoting Gadahn as proof that the U.S. needs to close the gun-show loophole. "There may never be a better spokesman" for doing so than Gadahn, opined The Washington Post—echoed by ThinkProgress, the New York Daily News, the Brady Campaign, and countless others.

This has to qualify as the Mount Everest of non sequiturs. The "loophole," as it is called, refers to the fact that private citizens who are not licensed gun dealers can sell their guns without conducting background checks—not only at gun shows, but anywhere. There are some sound arguments for closing the gun-show loophole, and there are some sound arguments for not closing it, and anyone who has followed the debate is familiar with most of them.

There are also some stupid arguments on both sides. Contending that the loophole should be closed because it might redound to the benefit of terrorists has to be one of the stupidest. Many of those making it simply cite Gadahn's words alone as sufficient proof—as though it were intuitively obvious that any policy potentially useful to Al Qaeda must be repealed at once.

If so, then Congress will be very busy. Because the so-called loophole is not the only policy potentially useful to Al Qaeda. So are a great many others. Among them: habeas corpus, which the Supreme Court reaffirmed in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld; the Fourth Amendment and its various progeny, such as the unique-to-America exclusionary rule; Miranda guarantees; the FISA court, which (some say) hamstrings counterintelligence efforts; and so on.

Indeed, during the Bush years you heard a lot of talk along just such lines: Many conservatives argued with perfectly straight faces that the blood of a hundred-thousand innocent people would be on the hands of anyone who let constitutional scruples get in the way of hunting terrorists down. Dissenting in Boumediene v. Bush, for example, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia lamented that upholding the habeas rights of alleged enemy combatants "will almost certainly cause more Americans to be killed."

Well. After the High Court struck down a Chicago gun-control law last year, The New York Times—which praised recognizing the habeas rights of suspected terrorists—condemned recognizing the Second Amendment rights of American citizens. The arguments in the Chicago ruling, it lamented, "were infuriatingly abstract, but the results will be all too real and bloody."

Constraints upon government meant to protect the innocent sometimes end up protecting the guilty as well. That is one of the prices we pay for our liberties, and in that regard Justice Jackson was wrong. In some ways, the Constitution is a suicide pact: We accept the dangers of liberty in return for not living in a police state.

Or at least that is how it is supposed to work. People tend to want to carve out exceptions, though. So while liberals and conservatives don't agree on much, they do agree on this: American lives are far too precious to squander in defense of any item of the Bill of Rights cherished by the other side.

A. Barton Hinkle is a columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch. This article originally appeared at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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  1. Freedom is terrorism?

    1. Exactly. Amazing how perfect that is for the state, isn’t it?

      1. In a real sense, it’s true. Freedom is terrorism. . .for government. They’re terrified of too many of us being too free. Heck, we might ignore them or something!

    2. Freedom is terrorism?

      No. Nicely simplified, though.

      1. The definition of a freedom fighter to one person is terrorist to annother.

        If you are against the repression of the State, you are fit the above definition, depending on what side you are on; the loosing one or the winning one.

    3. So opression is freedom from terrorism.
      The only freedom worth having, in fact, the only freedom there is.
      WOW, so Saddam Hussien was a great freedom fighter, along with Hitler, Mao, Stalin.
      Who knew?

      1. When one names Hitler, Stalin, Mao, one should also include Lincoln, Roosevelt I, Wilson, Roosevelt II, Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, Bush II and Obama.

        All of the above are mass murderers.

        1. I guess before I would agree with you, I’d need to see your definition of “mass murderer” and “murderer.”

        2. Why start with Lincoln, why not George Washington?

      2. So oppression is freedom from terrorism.

        No, freedom is oppression that protects us from terrorism.

    4. Do you need the mantra again?

      WAR IS PEACE.
      FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.
      IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.

      Now write it on the board 100 times.

  2. Shouldn’t we also abolish the Fourth Amendment, the FISA court, and maybe even habeas corpus?

    You mean we haven’t yet?

    1. Shouldn’t we also abolish the Fourth Amendment, the FISA court, and maybe even habeas corpus?

      You mean we haven’t yet?

      Actually, Bill, we have. If you read the new Constitution, Bush born and Obama approved, there’s an asterisk beside each of these items, with the following note: “Does not apply to dudes who sport facial hair and/or talk funny.”

      So keep your razor sharp and brush up on your elocution, or Obama just may ram a killer drone up your ass, sideways.

      1. Don’t forget the dangers of people who fly Gadsen flags and vote for Ron Paul.

        Those are the REAL terrorists.

        1. That’s muh Governor!!
          ..
          :/

        2. So the terrorists haven’t won!

      2. I’ll give Bush and Obama “credit” for accelerating the race to tyranny, but it hardly started with Bush. It’s an old problem, and it’s been getting successively worse.

        1. successively worse.

          Interesting choice of words.

        2. This is true. The American march towards tyranny is at least a century old and has been steady, incremental, and unyielding.

  3. Several days ago Adam Gadahn, an American-born spokesman for Al Qaeda, urged would-be jihadists to buy guns at gun shows: “America is absolutely awash with easily obtainable firearms,” he said. “You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card. So what are you waiting for?

    Let’s see the number of real jhiadists in the country, maybe a few hundred. The number of well armed gun nuts who go to sleep every night dreaming the day they will get to slaughter a jihadist, millions.

    That is what they are waiting for dumb ass.

    1. because everyone knows the jihadists must inflitrate…SUBURBIA !

      1. Based on the “leadership team” on my homeowners association, the terrorists have already won over suburbia.

    2. If you want to legally walk away with a fully automatic anything, you’ll need to have paperwork on file with the BATF, have the appropriate tax stamps paid for, and run through the background checks that requires.

      It’s pretty rare for a fully automatic weapon to be transferred these days without an attorney involved. NFA-legal weapons are simply too valuable (they are, in fact, “investment grade”) to mess anything up.

      You won’t see any NFA-legal automatic weapons at a run of the mill gun show available for sale on the spot.

      1. You’re messing up the narrative with facts.

      2. Good answer and it highlights the problem with Adam Gadahn. He’s a pink diaper baby from California who’s been on the run overseas for ten years. What what makes him an expert on American firearms regulations? His statement is full of Euro-garbage about American gun culture. Why does anyone take him seriously?

        1. You can stop taking anyone seriously who utters the phrase “assault weapon”.

      3. Go to the knob creek machine gun show in Kentucky. Brand new FN M249 (SAWS). You got the cash, you got the gun.

        1. Whiskey and guns! That’s old school.

        2. Yep, after the 30 day waiting period and all of the aforementioned paperwork. Well, that is if you want it to be legal. If not, the jack booted thugs from BATF will bust down your door someday, and you can have a 15 to 30 year stay at the local federal guest house.

          Just out of hand, I believe a “Brand New” M249 is illegal to purchase at all. Didn’t Congress ban the sale of new machine guns in the late 80’s?

    3. WOLVERINES!!!

  4. Who knew they had to hijack airliners. Just release a threatening video tape, and win!

  5. Shouldn’t we also abolish the Fourth Amendment, the FISA court, and maybe even habeas corpus?

    That train has already left the barn and sailed over the horizon.

    1. Your use of metaphor is well developed and inspriring, P Brooks.

    2. If we can hit that bull’s-eye, the rest of the dominoes will fall like a house of cards…Checkmate.

  6. Freedom is terrorism?

    You betcha.

  7. Shouldn’t we also abolish the Fourth Amendment, the FISA court, and maybe even habeas corpus?

    I say we take off and nuke the entire constitution from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.

    1. Mission, as they say, accomplished.

    2. Game over, man! Game over!

      1. Well, at least you don’t see them fucking each other over for a goddamned percentage.

      2. EPIC WIN

        Great movie

      3. In case you’re not up on current events, we just got our asses kicked.

    3. Fuckin’ Aye

  8. http://www2.timesdispatch.com/…..r-1113723/

    The Palin quote is from the Richmond Times Dispatch. But it doesn’t way where she said it. And no one else seems to have picked up on it. Odd, considering the national media’s obsession with the woman. I would like to hear the rest of what she said and when she said it. But it seems to be down the memory hole of the internet. Anyone know of any other links to the quote than the one above?

    1. “Ha! Only kidding. None of that really happened. (Had you there for a second though, right?)”

      Looks like he gotcha.

    2. None of that really happened
      None of that really happened

      None of that really happened

        1. Yours was funnier.

    3. John, this is truly one of your finest moments. Thanks, as always, for the lulz.

      1. woops. Nevermind. LOL

  9. What’s this crap about walking away with a “fully automatic assault rifle”? I’m not into Class 3 stuff–regular semi auto is fine by me–but my understanding is that private citizens can only buy full auto weapons made before 1986 (due to supply and demand the prices are exhorbitant) and then only after going through an onerous licensing process.

    1. You are correct. It’s a fairly onerous process with some appalling quirks.

    2. $7000 and the freedom to have your home searched by BATFE at a whim. Much better to buy semi-auto if you have bad intentions.

      1. Wrong. Purchasing a Title II firearm does not give ATF the right of inspection. You must show the paperwork on request to an ATF agent but you are not even required to produce the firearm in question without a warrant or subpeona.

        While holding an FFL allows ATF to search the licensed business premises, simply registering a Title II firearm does no such thing. This myth has been around forever and needs to be dispelled.

        1. I thought the license requirements were that the named premises were open to inspection.

          1. That’s true for an FFL but you don’t need a license for Title II firearms.

      2. Yeah, full auto fire doesn’t do anything that aimed semi auto fire won’t do and I don’t like to waste ammo.

        1. I agree that semi-auto fire could be just as effective, but what makes you think you can’t aim full-auto fire just as well? With proper practice, a good marksman can place the first shot just as accurately, and subsequent shots within an acceptable grouping.

          1. I imagine it depends on the range, and how much the weapon recoils. At close range with a 9mm or 5.56 I agree, the shots should be pretty close together. A 7.62×39 or x51, not so much.

            On full auto its easy to dump the whole magazine into one attacker which is a problem if there is more than one.

            1. While one could dump a whole mag, why would one? It takes longer than you think to dump a 30 round M16 mag at 750 rounds per minute. When you shoot a lot of full auto, as I do, you get used to short controlled bursts, and counting rounds.

              1. Practical advice, but I think you’re forgetting about the propaganda value of fully automatic weapons. They scare people. Specifically, they scare the living crap out of liberals, lefty news reports, and most Democrats. A guy cutting loose with a machine gun in a shopping mall would mean that the type of carnage we think is restricted to dysfunctional, life-is-cheap Third World countries has arrived in the USA. He could start a moral panic that would last for months if not years. That’s what a terrorist really wants.

                1. A guy cutting loose with a machine gun in a shopping mall would mean that the type of carnage we think is restricted to dysfunctional, life-is-cheap Third World countries has arrived in the USA.

                  Until a person armed with a semi-auto pistol fires two to the chest, while the assailant is doing a magazine change.

              2. If you’re used to using it in short, controlled bursts, then what’s the point of paying for the full auto anyway? Short, controlled bursts are precisely what the semi gives you, at much less cost.

                1. Back before 1986 when fully automatic weapons were cheaply available, they didn’t result in that many actual street deaths since the operators of them would spray randomly, miss their targets, and not maintain a weapon which needs overhauled after a a few thousand cycles.

                2. If you’re used to using it in short, controlled bursts, then what’s the point of paying for the full auto anyway?

                  Well, it’s called a “happy switch” for a reason.

            2. Gotta be prepared for when zombies attack

    3. To buy or make an NFA item (assuming you’re in a state that allows it) you have to pay a $200 tax, get fingerprinted by the BATF, register the weapon with the BATF, and get a signature from a local LE official (sheriff, for example).

      This is a per-item process.

      1. Or you can register the weapon to a corporation you control and skip the fingerprinting, background check, and LEO signoff.

    4. Yer smart terrorist would simply buy semi auto, register for some gunsmithing classes, and learn how to make the weapons automatic. It ain’t difficult.

      Like we did when I was growing up in rural America…:)

      1. Oh, wait – I forgot. It’s only the criminals/bad guys/terrorists who follow the rules. So, yeah, only the gun nuts have converted autos – the terrorists would have to go through the onerous registration/training/submit-to-inspection process.

        I apologize for the confusion…

        1. Of course, any competent machinist can make his own automatic AK-clone from scratch. Hell, the Afghani’s have been doing it with medieval-era blacksmithing tools.

      2. Turning a semi-auto rifle into a full-auto one is not as easy as you think it is. For one thing, you have to get the parts that are necessary, and they’re classified as full auto Class 3 firearms themselves and heavily regulated.

        1. Untrue. While it is not easy to do conversions, the parts are not regulated as you suggest. While most dealers will ask you to show paperwork for the weapon the parts are for, there is no such regulation restricting sale or transfer of those parts.

          Woe to you if you happen to have the conversion parts along with the appropriate semi-auto gun, however. ATF has successfully prosecuted people for that, arguing that simultaneous possession is equivalent to an unregistered machinegun

        2. The ATF already ruled (and eventually reversed) that a key ring and a piece of string is a “machine gun”.

          1. Only in conjunction with the particular firearm (Mini 14? M1 carbine?) that can be made to fire automatically using those parts. I wasn’t aware that had been reversed. Was the person’s conviction reversed as well? Do you have a link on this? I’d be curious to read their reasoning.

            1. The official letter in 2004 ruled that the shoestring with loops tied in the ends was a “machine gun”.

              They reversed their ruling in 2007. As the ruling now stands, a shoestring is only a machine gun if you happen to also possess a semi-automatic firearm at the same time.

              Favourite quote: “[T]he string by itself is not a machinegun, whether or not there are loops tied on the ends.”

              http://www.everydaynodaysoff.c…..chine-gun/

            2. See http://goo.gl/o4p1H

              The reversal stated “[t]he string by itself is not a machinegun, whether or not there are loops tied on the ends.” You are only guilty of possessing a machinegun if you have both a 14 inch piece of shoestring and a semi-automatic firearm.

  10. You see ,the bill of rights stands in the way of a drug and gun free country.Then they can go after tobacco ,sugar,fats,hate speech,and not brushing your teeth properly and health care will be solved and free to all.It’ll be rainbows and unicorns from then on

    1. All kidding aside, unicorn urine has some wonderful antioxidant properties

      1. Well, if they fart rainbows, that means they probably are emitting water in a rainbow-specific manner. I presume that we’ll just go for a reversal and say they pee carbon dioxide, an that’s sure one hell of an antioxidant!

        1. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure what we’re reversing, but it sure sounds cool.

  11. You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card.

    Wrong. Class 3 firearms have separate rules.

    1. You see,a semi auto deer rile IS a atomatic to the uneducated.Also,a 9mm semi auto is a high powered hand gun

      1. “You see,a semi auto deer rile IS a atomatic to the uneducated”

        As is a & an.

        1. “atomatic” sounds cool. What does it mean?

    2. I wonder how many of these people have ever actually set foot into a gun show. Damn few, I suspect; most of them acquire their “knowledge” of the subject from Brady Bunch propaganda.

      Finding a private seller at a gun show with the weapons you want would be chancy at best. And doing a deal like that, in a public venue crawling with cops, military, ex-cops, ex-military, and good ol’ boys? Pretty dicey for someone trying to stay on the down-low.

    3. Never expect a journalist not to be a moron. They’re possibly one of the stupidest professions, up there with DMV worker and unionized factory chimp.

      1. I work in a “unionized factory”, Epi. In fact, I’ve worked in many in my 22 years in manufacturing. And our workers are not “chimps”. You can train chimps to do what you want them to do on a consistent basis.

        Your note is an insult to chimps everywhere. On their behalf, I demand an apology!!

        *adopts huffy look on face*

        1. Think US auto worker unions. You know, like the ones GM was bailed out to protect.

          1. I am…:) NOW APOLOGIZE TO THE REAL CHIMPS, EPI! THAT’S WHO I WAS TALKING ABOUT – THE REAL CHIMPS – WHO ARE OFFENDED THAT YOU COMPARED THEM TO AUTO WORKERS, YOU BASTARD!!!!

            Why do you hate Bonzo, Epi?

            1. Like I said – “you can train chimps”. Auto workers…meh…sometimes not so much. Just sayin’…

              That’s why we like “automation” so much.

              1. And that’s a problem.

            2. You’ll have to forgive Epi. Sometimes his rampant anti-simiantism gets the best of him.

            3. that’s it…let the union hate flow…feel all better now?

              1. The friends/family I hear complain the most about unions are the ones who are union members and work in union workplaces.

      2. You know, I don’t claim to be smart but there are two subjects Im pretty familiar with–guns and nutrition/exercise. Virtually everything the mainstream media says about these two topics is completely incorrect. If they are so full of it on these 2 topics, how bad are they on everything else?

        1. They are just as terrible on science, computers, everything. Which is why consuming anything from the media is like swimming in stupidity.

        2. Same is true with me and computers, the media is usually only correct by accident.

        3. This makes perfect sense pablo. the msm writes articles to appeal to the intelligence of the average knob out in the public. Well, no matter what the subject matter, some people who know a lot about that subject realize the article is just a bunch of drivel, while most people don’t know crap about the subject or likely probably know about the same as the author, therefore, everything the msm writes or reports on is meaningless, misleading or downright incorrect.

    4. Knob Creek machine gun show. Whatever you want if you have the cash. Not kidding, been there many times.

      1. You still can’t walk out with one you just bought. even licensed dealers have to wait until ATF approves the transfer before taking possession.

  12. “The pendulum has swung too far in the narcoterrorists’ favor,”

    Considering how wealthy our idiotic laws are making them, this is in some ways actually true.

    1. Narcoterrorists are so wealthy they ca even buy a President! Did’nt Clinton “inadvertently” accept campaign donations from one at one time?

  13. Ha.

    Joke’s on me.

  14. “You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card. So what are you waiting for?”

    This guy works for Michael Bloomberg?

  15. Didn’t the PATRIOT Act take police powers that were already in use against suspected drug dealers and allow them to be used against suspected terrorists?

  16. There are some sound arguments for closing the gun-show loophole

    Really? Like what? I’ve heard arguments for closing this so-called loophole but none I would consider sound.

    1. Well, the 2A says “keep and bear”. It doesn’t protect acquisition of firearms. So you have no right whatsoever to actually buy a gun from anyone, anywhere, anytime, anyhow.

      1. The 18th amendment outlawed (IIRC) making, distilling, and transporting alcohol. If you happened to find a beer somewhere from 1920-1933, it was perfectly legal to drink it.

        1. RC, there you go again with that legal positivism. I have to remind you that the founding generation was dominated by those who championed natural rights.

          1. 18th amendment was passed in 1919. Just pointing that out…

      2. The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

      3. The first amendment says that speech shall not be infringed, but says nothing about outlawing thoughtcrime to come up with the words to say in the first place?

      4. I didn’t buy that gun, he just gave it to me as a gift to thank me for giving him a charitable donation.

        1. That’s what she said!

        2. Nelson Muntz: “Never hurts to have a second pair of prints on a gun.”

    2. IFF one accepts that background checks are a useful procedure for official dealers, then it makes sense that they be required for lawful private purchases. Mostly this would result in all private purchasing being done through a dealer, as they are for out of state purchases, including a nominal fee for the dealer’s time. That is the extent of the positive argument for it.

      The fact that this argument is completely trumped by the problems with such a system doesn’t mean it isn’t a reasonable one, again, IFF you accept that background checks are constitutional and useful to begin with.

      1. Any flawed argument is “reasonable” if you accept its flaws (in say, its premises).

        1. Nitpicking, I know, but I think the word you want is logical.

      2. Anything is possible if you don’t know what you’re talking about.

  17. The Dems have had plenty of time to shitcan the PATRIOT Act.

    Instead, they keep voting to extend it.

    Fuck ’em.

    1. NOW they’re in power, NOW it’s being used wisely. Catch up.

  18. Most terrorist activity is mass murder. Handguns and rifles aren’t the most efficient way to do mass murder. Explosives are.

    Therefore I seriously doubt there is such a thing as an American-born AQ spokesman. He’s a creation of the gun-control nuts.

    1. You can do a pretty good job with rifles and handguns. I’d take them over explosives. I don’t know, just something about explosives I don’t like.

      1. Yeah, well, they worked pretty well on you.

    2. so what youre saying is this guy is the Keyser Soze of the gun control nuts?

    3. I seem to remember a few years ago when the “DC Sniper” had the entire east coast terrified to leave their homes.

  19. I’ll admit the first part had me going. I *am* a news junkie.

  20. …I definitely fell for it.

    If you ever find yourself having to convince anyone that the two parties really are the same, this is the article to pull to help you do it. Even though the Republicans didn’t actually say all that stuff, it’s feasible and believable. And both of the parties wanted to “protect” you from teh baddies by taking away rights. I hate to preach to the choir here, but that speaks to how shitty our political state of affairs is in America.

    1. HERE IS COKE ZERO…NOW, PLAIN ZERO!

      1. I live to see you eat that pastrami sandwich, but I hope you leave enough room for my fist because I’m going to ram it into your stomach and break your god-damn spine!

        1. Only in a re-run.

      2. Who loves you and who do you love?

      3. Another one of the depressingly prescient SF movies of the late 80s/early 90s.

      4. You’re lucky he didn’t kill you, too. Or rape you, then kill you. Or kill you, then rape you.

    2. Even though the Republicans didn’t actually say all that stuff, it’s feasible and believable.

      My mistake was in trusting the source. I really should know better by now.

  21. There’s another thing that terrorists can use against us, and that’s this ridiculous policy of allowing minorities to ride on airplanes. If they don’t close that loophole we could have another 9/11 style attack.

  22. Should be very interesting to see how that works out.

    http://www.web-privacy.no.tc

  23. Adam Gadahn, an American-born spokesman for Al Qaeda: “America is absolutely awash with easily obtainable firearms,” he said…”So what are you waiting for?” Within a couple of femtoseconds, progressive America began quoting Gadahn as proof that the U.S. needs to close the gun-show loophole.

    So what? It’s news that “progressives” are against gun ownership? In case no one has noticed, the 2nd Amendment has been strengthened lately, not weakened.

  24. How much barton could a hinkle barton if a hinkle could barton a hinkle?

    He’d hinkle as much barton as a barton could hinkle if a hinkle could barton.

    Sorry but Almanian (or whoever) was slow on the uptake and it had to be said.

    1. The woodchucks are golf-clapping

  25. the 2nd Amendment has been strengthened lately, not weakened.

    The Second Amendment is the same as it has always been. However, surprising as it may be, state and local laws restricting it have been struck down.

  26. “Restricting” should be Violating”

  27. Did anyone see this?

    This week a divided panel of the Fifth Circuit held in United States v. Portillo-Munoz that illegal aliens are not part of the “people” protected by the Second Amendment and thus have no constitutional right to bear arms.

    http://balkin.blogspot.com/

    1. Can legal aliens keep and bear arms under the 2nd?

      1. Can bears keep and arm aliens?

        1. Do I have a right to the arms of bears under the Second?

        1. But not if they are Jews.

          /MNG World

          1. Boy, you are obsessed with sniffing out those who disagree with you on Israel policy and hurling anti-Semite charges at them. Well, that and sniffing farts.

            1. One smart feller, he felt smart. Two smart fellers, they felt smart. Three smart fellers, they all felt smart.

            2. Just for fun, asscunt, what is my Israel police and how does it differ / compare with yours?

              tick tock, tick tock…

              1. What a sad lil’ guy you are. Go play now Gobby.

                1. tick tock, tick tock…

            3. C+.

              Excellent use of JOOOOSSSS!!!!, not enough abortion.

      2. Yes, but there are state laws to consider. In WA, yes they can.

      3. I would have to read the ruling, but the notion that there are individuals who literally walk under the flag of the United States, but are not entitled to the protections thereof, is the most odious thing invented by government in a long time. Everybody who falls into the hands of the United States (except in declared wars), whether by choice, capture, or accident of birth, is entitled to the protections in the Constitution.

        1. It seems strange that they would be “the people” protected under the First and Fourth Amendment but not the “people” in the Second…

          1. Governments like to exploit and oppress immigrants and granting them constitutional rights would be inconvenient for those goals.

          2. Well until recently “the people” in the second has meant something rather different than “the people” everywhere else in the constitution. Now that it has been….”clarified”(?)….immigrants should of course be afforded the same rights as everyone else, including the 2nd.

        2. Well phrased! I’ve been arguing this for years, that the Constitution and BoR limits all interactions of the US with any human being.

          1. That’s a nice argument but there is no legal weight behind it.

            Under a theory of natural rights, all humans (regardless of citizenship) have certain rights, but the U.S. constitution does not grant such rights to the entire mass of humanity.

            1. The Constitution does not grant rights; it limits government power. And it should do so in a way that follows the United States government wherever the United States government asserts sovereignty, whether that be Texas (with respect to an illegal immigrant) or Bagram, Afghanistan. If the United States Government does not want to play by the rules with respect to X population, then it should have no power to interact with X population.

      4. Yes. A friend of mine is a resident alien (swiss/austrian) who boght a Browning 30-06 within 4 hours of landing in America. He now has an FFL and is a class 3 arms dealer…international at that. Funny story, he buys FALs, requiring them to be shipped to him of course, then resells them to Belgians. When I said “uhh, wouldnt it be easier and cheaper for the Belgians to buy their own damn guns?” He said no…he said it is easier for them to buy them from him in America. Kills me.

        1. Has demand gone up since Belgium became the Somalia of Europe?

        2. Don’t know if it’s true or not but I heard somewhere that it’s illegal to own a gun chambered in a military caliber.

          Identical weapons are produced in Belgian factories. Those for military use are stamped 7.62 NATO, those for civilian use are stamped .308 Winchester.

          Might be an urban legend, I’ve never be able to verify it one way or another.

          I don’t know what the thing is about military calibers being so scary. The Australian state of New South Wales banned sales of guns in them years ago which lead to a whole industry of “wildcat” cartridges. Surplus Lee Enfields, by far the biggest sorces of sporting firearms in Oz in the postwar years, were rebarrelled and new loads like 25/.03 created. oddly enough .303 was legal in every other state and didn’t seem to cause any crime problems (or whatever it was that the NSW nannies feared).

      5. Legal aliens derive their rights via statute, not the constitution, sad as that may be.

        For example, a “nonimmigrant alien” has to get a hunting/fishing licence first before they can fire a weapon at a shooting range.

        1. I would think that’s a state thing.

          There’s a couple of places in Orlando that rent machine guns. They do a pretty good trade with Canuck, Limey and German tourists from what I here.

    2. Here is some more of the post…

      Since the term “people” is also used in the First, Fourth, and Ninth Amendments, this decision has sweeping implications…Since the term “people” is also used in the First, Fourth, and Ninth Amendments, this decision has sweeping implications…Second, an illegal alien claim against state action (as opposed to Portillo-Munoz’s attack on a federal statute) is one of the rare instances where the method of incorporating the Bill of Rights matters. If the Bill had been applied to the States through the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, then those protections would apply only to citizens…Third, I am unpersuaded by the Fifth Circuit’s argument that “people” can mean different things in different parts of the Constitution.

      1. Yeah, well, Commerce Clause.
        That’s all.

  28. Why would jihadists buy guns when they could easily walk across the border with them when they come to this country?

    The Gun Control movement is essentially a culture war. The limousine progressives hate Rural America and the South. Anything that can lessen the “peasants” from an uprising is fine and dandy with this group and they will send their goons, Feinstein and Chucky Schumer with the Brady Minions. Soon the Left will undoubtedly start calling gun owners racists, if they havent already.

    As far as the PATRIOT act is concerned, it seems both the Left and the Right have fully embraced this legislation with only a handful of dissenters.

    It seems all a terrorist has to do anymore is cry wolf, and both sides will strip rights away under the guise of “terrorism” all without ever having to hijack, detonate a bomb, or even hurt a bunny and the media and the idiot politicians create all the hysteria needed to properly use the Constitution as Toilet Paper.

    1. Sweeping generalizations alert….

      1. “”Sweeping generalizations alert….””

        Or as they say in NYC, Code Orange.

    2. The guns for sale in Mexico are a lot nicer than the ones in the U.S., too; you can get freshly manufactured AR-15s, etc. instead of the ancient pre-86 stuff in the U.S., like crappy M-11/9s for $5k that are about to fall apart after cycling a few rounds.

    3. The Gun Control movement is essentially a culture war. The limousine progressives hate Rural America and the South. Anything that can lessen the “peasants” from an uprising is fine and dandy with this group and they will send their goons, Feinstein and Chucky Schumer with the Brady Minions. Soon the Left will undoubtedly start calling gun owners racists, if they havent already.

      Ironically, a lot of problems black people had between the end of Reconstruction the Civil Rights movement could have been solved had their 2nd Amendment rights not been abridged by Jim Crow laws.

      1. I seem to remember there were a couple of cases pre-1861 when slave chasers entered into black settlements in PA looking for fugitive slaves & some didn’t get out alive. And I *think* there were one or two cases in parts of the south where armed blacks kept race mobs out of their neighborhoods post-1877.

  29. I get my guns from Eric Holder.

    1. Stay where you are, we will be there shortly to show you how we fit a baton inside a rectum!

      1. OUCH!

        1. Don’t you mean ‘Ay Caramba!’?

  30. Oh those libbys — using Bush logic but somehow think they are different.

  31. If there’s some way a person can go to a gun show and come out with a fully automatic firearm without having to register it with the federal government, it’s a total surprise to me.

    But maybe it would be a good idea for would-be terrorists to entertain that fantasy; then when someone goes to a gun show and tells sellers he wants a full auto MP5 or Uzi, they’ll know who they’re dealing with.

    1. I go to gun shows regularly, and you can buy full auto weapons. You can’t walk out of the show with one though, just fill out the forms and make a deposit. I don’t know how long the paperwork takes, I know it cost $200. But since the only full auto guns legal for sale were manufactured or imported before (I think) 1986, they are a rare and limited commodity. The average going price is around $15,000 and they are far from unused.

  32. “not a mutual suicide pact”… Jackson was right, but not as he meant. It’s a statement of principles that are worth living for, and if need be, dying for.

  33. Several days ago Adam Gadahn, an American-born spokesman for Al Qaeda, urged would-be jihadists to buy guns at gun shows: “America is absolutely awash with easily obtainable firearms,” he said. “You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card. So what are you waiting for?

    This is total BS I’ve bought guns at gun shows and in PA they have an instant background check. The vendor calls a state office gives your info and you are either approved or disapproved. And NO WHERE can you legally buy a “fully automatic assault rifle”

    1. I get my fully automatic assault rifles from the gun shows held next to tractor pulls.

  34. “You can go down to a gun show at the local convention center and come away with a fully automatic assault rifle, without a background check, and most likely without having to show an identification card…”

    It’s amazing how many people believe that this is true.

  35. Wouldn’t he have been smarter telling them to buy machine tools. After all the Afghans and Chechens make some somewhat workbable weapons over charcoal fires.

  36. The argument applies not only to freedoms, but even to material goods & services that could be used to facilitate terror and other crimes. Like for instance roads and vehicles to travel on them can transport miscreants; money and banking services make it possible for them to buy weapons; eyeglasses help them shoot straight; coffee and tea and people serving them keep them alert during their escapades; toilets and plumbing keep them from leaving a trail of urine; clothing & tailoring, etc. So maybe we should just denude ourselves or all goods & services so nobody can do bad things with them.

    Just yesterday in this space there was news that Camden NJ was about to follow that logic, closing businesses late at night so nobody could buy crack there.

  37. From what I’ve read, Bin Laden discouraged the types of attacks Gadahn is encouraging here. He wanted high-profile attacks, with each one bigger than the last (which may explain why we weren’t hit since 9/11).

    With his death, we might see more of these small-scale, Columbine style hits from Jihadists. A lot easier to pull off

  38. (misquoting the late Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson

    Where did Palin claim to be quoting anyone?

    1. as pointed out IMMEDIATELY after that, it was a joke. too bad your anger that someone was making fun of the obvious blinded you to reading it fully…a little hot headed?

  39. Hinkle you bastard! I really DID believe you for a second. Suck my dick (pic enclosed).

  40. One can buy crack at people’s homes. We should shut those down, too.

  41. The Palin quote simply doesn’t pass the smell test. I’m betting Hunkle fabricated it out of thin air.

    Produce an audio clip and prove me wrong.

  42. Mr hinkle is ignoring the bleeding obvious. There must be rule of law to protect peoples’ right to be free. There is always a tension between the two. Why not have a Constitutional right to be given the privacy and freedom to commit any crime against anyone, free from interference from the State? Miranda rights were and are a downright stupid primitive ritual that some power hungry judge made up. FISA is absurd. The exclusionary rule is just down right idiotic.

  43. not surprising this came from Richmond, capital of the state that owns Virginia Tech. 25% of guns manufactured in this world are for Americans. gun shows ALL freaking over the south, no ID needed. this is well known. personal responsibility is not in existence in this country by and large, and we’re not forming militias anymore to protect our families from Native marauders who were, surprisingly, angry at the new comers taking over land and infecting them. we needED guns…do we now? why are we so afraid? why are conservs so ready to shoot those who disagree (don’t retreat, reload!)? why are 75% of video games centered around killing with guns?

    guns are smart.
    guns are cool.
    guns save lives (while extinguishing others).
    i’m nra and i vote.

  44. freedom doesn’t exist in this country. i do wish we could get over that pathetic claim…until i can make decisions on my own without my government telling me what’s healthy (they just slashed FDA funding), telling what’s smart, etc., Ms. Palin’s “personal freedoms and individual liberties” simply do not exist. sounds great, but empty in reality.

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