Gun Rights

California Says Residents With Vacated Out-of-State Convictions May Not Own Guns

A federal lawsuit says the state is violating the Second Amendment by refusing to recognize the restoration of firearm rights by courts in other states.


California DOJ

While serving in the U.S. Navy more than three decades ago, Chad Linton pleaded guilty to driving under the influence, a misdemeanor, and attempting to evade a police vehicle, a Class C felony, in Island County, Washington. More than four decades ago, when he was 18, Paul Stewart was found guilty of first-degree burglary, a felony, after hopping a fence and stealing tools from an unlocked telephone company truck in Yuma County, Arizona. In both cases, the felony convictions were eventually vacated, and both men's firearm rights were restored.

But not according to the state of California, where Linton and Stewart have long led law-abiding lives. The California Department of Justice (DOJ) maintains that their vacated felony convictions forever disqualify them from buying or possessing guns. Last week Linton and Stewart, joined by the Firearms Policy Coalition and three other gun rights groups, filed a federal lawsuit in San Francisco, arguing that California's policy violates the Second Amendment, the Full Faith and Credit Clause, and the Privileges and Immunities Clause.

California law, like federal law, prohibits people with felony convictions from owning firearms. On its face, that provision does not apply to people like Linton and Stewart, since their felony records have been vacated and therefore no longer exist as far the courts of conviction are concerned. Yet the California DOJ has told them that the state does not recognize those legal facts.

Both men, after thinking they had cleared up the matter, have attempted to buy firearms, only to be told that they are not legally allowed to do so in California. In Linton's case, the DOJ's Bureau of Firearms sent agents to his home in San Bernardino County last April and confiscated several guns he had legally purchased (or so he thought) after passing background checks. The complaint says the agents, after seeing Washington court documents showing that Linton's conviction had been vacated and his firearm rights restored, thought his guns should be returned, but they were overruled by Deputy Attorney General Robert Wilson.

According to the complaint, Wilson told Linton's attorney, Adam Richards, during a telephone conversation in September that Linton's only remedy would be a presidential pardon—an odd suggestion, not only because his conviction had been vacated but because the president does not have the power to pardon state crimes. "During our call," Richards said in a December 4 letter to Wilson that is included as an exhibit in the lawsuit, "you stated that the only measure that would restore [Linton's] rights, according to your Department, is a presidential pardon. As I informed you during our conversation, I strongly disagree with the Department's position as I believe it to be arbitrary and capricious for several reasons."

Richards rejected Wilson's argument that California need not take into account the actions of courts in other states. "Your position that Washington orders have no authority over California is irrelevant and misses the crux of the issue," he wrote. "Washington courts are not seeking to modify a California order or case. Instead, the question of whether Mr. Linton was convicted of a felony resides with the jurisdiction in which the conviction allegedly occurred. Mr. Linton has no record in the State of California and now, effectively, has no record in the State of Washington."

The lawsuit says the DOJ's insistence that Linton and Stewart should still be treated as felons under California law represents "a total and permanent deprivation of their fundamental, individual right to keep and bear arms and ammunition, as guaranteed by the Second Amendment." Linton et al. argue that the policy "cannot be justified, and therefore fail[s] to satisfy any level or mode of scrutiny at all, let alone the heightened scrutiny that is required to deprive individuals of such fundamental rights."

The complaint says the policy also violates the Full Faith and Credit Clause, which "requires each State to recognize and give effect to valid judgments rendered by the courts of its sister States," and the Privileges and Immunities Clause, which "was designed to insure to a citizen of State A who ventures into State B the same privileges which the citizens of State B enjoy." Although California itself has a process for restoring the gun rights of people with in-state felony convictions when they are downgraded to misdemeanors, "California refuses to honor the comparable process utilized by other states."

The lawsuit portrays California's treatment of Linton and Stewart as part of a general hostility toward gun ownership. "In their zeal to prohibit as many citizens from owning firearms as possible," it says, California officials are "ignor[ing] the judgments and pronouncements of the courts of other states….The State has no constitutionally permissible interest in depriving individuals of their right to own, possess, and bear firearms for all lawful purposes, including self-defense in their homes, when any underlying convictions were remote, non-violent in nature, and adjudged to have been vacated or set aside in those other jurisdictions."

NEXT: Blame Anybody but Trump

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  1. When a plurality of voters make government comfortable with violating constitutional rights, the slope becomes very slippery.

    1. Indeed. Constitutional limits on government are there to prevent majority rule from abusing minorities, especially when said governments have so much power that everything they do divides the populace into unique majorities and minorities.

    2. Screw CA law! They should be deferring to bird law.

  2. Nothing wrong with California that a few tactical nukes along the coast wouldn’t fix.

    1. Neutron bombs, the only thing you want to be rid of is the humanity.

      Kamala Harris no doubt hired and trained the deputy AG.

      1. Trump’s collapse is making some of you yahoos very cranky . . . wait, you weren’t gullible enough to believe that Trump and his band of disaffected losers were actually going to accomplish anything, did you?

        Nah, nobody’s that dumb.

        1. What does Trump have to do with the state govt of CA, Rev? Other than your compulsive obsessive disorder.

          1. Trump’s futility seems to be making right-wing malcontents especially cranky, to the point at which they advocate wholesale killing of their betters in California.

            Carry on, clinger. So far as your betters permit, anyway.

            1. Artie,

              Shouldn’t you be out luring unsuspecting children into your primer gray rape van instead of wasting time here?

              1. Maybe Tony can show him the ropes, and the duct tape.

            2. California is a beautiful place, be a shame for something bad to happen to it.

              None of which has anything to do with Trump, except in your head Rev. Obsess away, it’s still something of a free country.

              1. His obsession is so weird and creepy.

            3. Carry on, clinger.

              So sayeth the Reason Gecko.

            4. “So far as your betters permit, anyway?”

              Gee, Rev. Elitist, who do think those people are? Who are your betters?

  3. Should CA choose to stand by their ruling that “California need not take into account the actions of courts in other states”, then it should also stand that the original charges would not be taken into account either, and thus their claim that the men are not qualified to own firearms would be invalid.

  4. California Says Residents With Vacated Out-of-State Convictions May Not Own Guns
    A federal lawsuit says the state is violating the Second Amendment by refusing to recognize the restoration of firearm rights by courts in other states.

    Preventing a person who is not under state custody from keeping and bearing Arms, is an unconstitutional violation of the 2nd Amendment.

    2A: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    1. The part about the militia means gun ownership is only a collective right, not an individual one. When Democrats are back in the White House and they enlarge the Supreme Court to 13 members, this country will have a much easier time passing common sense gun safety legislation.


      1. Why 13? There is a reasonable prospect 11 would work.

        1. When the current president inevitably replaces RBG, thirteen will be a necessity to restore the proper balance.

          1. If so, 13 it shall be!

            Are you goobers preparing your howls of outrage?

            1. If McConnell won’t get rid of the filibuster to fund the wall, we have not crossed that Rubicon yet. I don’t think you’re going to get your Court packing Rev, no matter which Dem wins the next time they take the White House, unless that happens first.

              1. Nah, don’t sweat it. FDR tried to pack the court (1937?) by expanding the number of justices. Not even *he* could get that done; public opposition was overwhelming. The next left-wing jellobrain to inhabit the White House won’t succeed, either.

            2. “A well balanced breakfast being necessary to the start of a healthy day, the right of the people to keep and bear food shall not be infringed.”

              Who has the rights here: a well balanced breakfast or the people?

              1. The term “well balanced breakfast” refers only to staple foods in common use in 1789 STOP CYBERBULLYING ME OR I’LL PUT YOU ON MY LIST


                1. I’m on his list with 3 different screen names.

                  The rest of you can’t hold my jock.

            3. What if Trump moves first and nominates 4 or more judges?

              1. Ask someone who chose an education to explain the futility of that approach.

                1. So…Not you?

                2. there IS no education availabl from which to choose that will be capable of explaining the futility of that approach. Suck it up, Buttercup, even IF (a HUGE if, that…) everything were to go your way and guns are outlawed nationwide, our right to arms will remain, as it is given by God as one part of our right to breathe air. It predates the Constitution, is not dependent upon it or any other human-made article or declaration. Repeal that Second Article of Ammendment, there will still be at least 300Mn guns in private hands and well above fifty million PEOPLE to keep them and bear them as needed to restore liberty and justice, even if there is not one militia anywhere to be found in America.

            4. And are you preparing your next fallacy to impress us all with?

      2. “The part about the militia means gun ownership is only a collective right, not an individual one”

        No. The militia was comprised of the people who would bring personally owned firearms with them when called to duty. The militia relies upon the individual right.

        Unless you are trolling by sarcastically invoking FDR unconstitutional Supreme Court packing.

        1. While I agree with the sentiment, FDR’s court packing, while ill advised, was not unconstitutional.

        2. >blockquote> Unless you are trolling by sarcastically invoking FDR unconstitutional Supreme Court packing.

          Is that a Liberty or Regent law degree talking, or were you homeschooled by Trump fans?

          1. Rev invents a time machine where Trump supporters from 2018 travel back in time and homeschool commentator Daniel when he was a child.

          2. You straight up suck at html so why should anyone care about your analysis of other languages?

            1. You seem very focused on that point. Why so distracted and agitated?

              1. There’s nothing else in any comment you have ever posted worth focusing on.

          3. In reality, neither FDR’s court packing nor Congress’ restructuring that High COurt were unconstitutioina., They do both, however, remain ill advised. Remember, Congress have the power to structure and restructure courts. This they merely did.

      3. We won’t need a Supreme Court or a Constitution or a Congress or Elections once someone sensible like Ocasio-Cortez is in charge. Then finally utopia will be ours.

        1. And this time, it will be *real* socialism.

        2. Occasional-Cortex. Get it right.

      4. I’ve come to enjoy your cheeky parody OBLT; the federal judiciary is indeed the elephant in the room. As far as I am concerned Trump can tweet all the pearl clutching outrage he wants for the next two years, as long as he and the Republican majority in the Senate fill those vacancies. Packing the court as you and the dipshit known as Rev suggest is an extreme measure to literally gerrymander the judiciary in order to achieve a given political objective; if FDR couldn’t do it I seriously doubt even President AO-C could manage it.

        Here is a better idea; Rev, Butt Plug, Hihn, and Tony can organize an effort to secede and form the Progressive States; then you can set up whatever kind of totalitarian government you want and torture your subjects to your hearts content; however, once they have decided which country they will pledge their allegiance to it will not be easy for them to up and move to the Re-Constitutionalized United States; we have seen what happens when such assholes leave CA and move to places like Colorado where they bring the same bullshit ideas and expectations they supposedly left behind in their dysfunctional homes. They want a government that assumes responsibility for all aspects of life and, like an overbearing mother, makes everyone follow the rules.

        1. Open wider, Quo Usque Tandem.

          Your betters have even more progress to shove down your throat.

          Be nicer, or someone may decide to start positioning that progress sideways.

          1. Your comment at Quo is particularly funny, in that you’re more than a bit of Catiline yourself.

            1. Indeed, as Cataline fought in the “Social War” in the year 89.

            2. Actually the Rev is far more catamite than Catiline.

              1. ignore him. he must have gotten tired of trolling the Washington Post comment pages.

          2. I’m always fascinated by your pathology, especially the one that literally equates implementing your preferred policies with a rape. Quite the endorsement.

            1. The liberal-libertarian policies have been and will continue to be implemented by legislation, executive action, adjudication, and public preferences. The ‘shoved down your throat’ and ‘against your efforts and wishes’ part refers to conservatives’ longstanding obedience to the will of their betters.

              1. then WHY, praytell, are the good people of New York State simply ignroing the demands of their “betters” and “forgetting” to register their “contraband” firearms? And WHY are the residents of New Jersey, thought to have above fifteen million standard capacity magazines in their possession also refusing to turn them in to Unka WhatzisName, who has demanded their surrender starting two weeks back? As of last Monday, per my sources, NOT ONE of the 15Mn banned magazines have been surrendered to any of the stations where one can surrender them. You underestimate the resolve and determination of the ones you discredit and despise.
                What was that crack about longstanding obedience to the will of their, er, uhm, “betters”?

                WHO really is wielding the power in those above situations? The nannies who want the stuff, or the ones who now have the stuff?

          3. The problem here Kirkland is that while you’re also a parody you’re just not very good at it.

            1. I don’t think he’s a parody like OBL.

              1. He’s not a parody. He was doing this same bit on the Volokh Conspiracy blog, then on the Washington Post when it hosted the blog, then on Reason. He’s only gotten more shrill over the years.

      5. Nice try, Bonzo: That word “milita” meant then, and still does, simply “all the people able to bear arms”.
        Further, the word “militia” in that pesky Second Article is the SUBJECT noun in a prefatory clause. Subjects are not acted upon, they do the acting. The word PEOPLE is an object noun in the subclause “of the people” which simply declares the possessor of the word “right”.. “right OF THE PEOPLE” means the right to arms BELONGS TO the people.. all of them.
        Most fourth graders would be able to correctly diagram that sentence and explain the meaning and operation of it. The right accrues to the PEOPLE, not “militia”, which is a subject noun two clauses earlier on.

        In our colonial days, each individual owned his own arms, then brought them together with his fellows so that they, as a group, could learn how to work together to assure “the security of a free state” (which means society). When a man showed up for drill, if he did not have his own weapons, the militia fund would provide him one, docking his monthly pay in increments until the rifle was paid for. But it was lawfully his the moment he first picked it up.

        Your fairy tales don’t fly here.

      6. we already HAVE twenty three thousand common sense gun laws on the books in this country, yet we STILL see CHicago and Baltimore and Philadelphia being the ,murder capitals of North America, prohibited persons passing the magickal mandated background checks and buying guns from FFL’s then taking them out and killing dozens of innocents with them. 93% of guns found in the hands of prohibited persons were obtained by simply using market channels that bypass the silly bckgroiund checks, waiting periods, Mother May I Catrds to carry them about in public, meanwhile more than 100,000 people a year who are NOT debarred the use of arms by law are denied their right to purchase guns form FFL dealers….. because of false positives returned by the NICS system, and the so-called appeals process is utterly broken, so they can’t get their name cleared to be able to buy the guns they want/need.

        So which NEW magickal common sense gun laws WILL prevent the mass public shootings, street murders in big cities, armed robberies, REAL felons obtaining the guns they want but are not lawfully ablle to get? Come on, name ONE proposed or imagined law that would have prevented ANY of the mass public shootings of the past fifty years?

      7. Lol yup, when you subvert the intent of the constitution of the US you can do lots of things. However when you do turn the constitution into bird cage liner, what will you turn too to defend yourself when others come after you and deny you your rights?

      8. Lawrence Tribe, pro gun control Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard, has written that, little though he may like it, the Second Amendment clearly protects an individual right.

    2. I think its great that people are suing to rollback unconstitutional gun control policies.

  5. If California is relying upon another state’s determination of a criminal offense then shouldn’t California have to respect the ultimate determination?

    1. Would seem so. If Tennessee has to honor gay marriage license issued by California, then California should have to honor a vacated sentence from some other state.

      1. So why does Tennessee have to honor a gay marriage license issued by California? Or a driver’s license? Or a child custody order? Or any other damn thing? Reciprocity means reciprocity.

        1. Well, that was the finding in Obergefell. It leads one to wonder why the same logic doesn’t extend to 2A rights, e.g. CCW licenses.

    2. Nah, California has been in “Heads I win, tails you lose” territory for some time.

      Ironic juxtaposition: Brown is pardoning criminal illegal aliens on the assumption that doing so will keep them from being deported.

      But, why should the federal government care about a pardon, (Which doesn’t imply that one is innocent of the offence.) when California doesn’t care about a conviction being vacated? (Which DOES mean that you’re innocent.)

  6. Now does everyone understand Blasey-Ford vs Kavanaugh? This is no different. These men are guilty beyond any possible common sense and due process because someone said they were guilty once by charging them…and California decides what is or what isn’t, doesn’t matter where, when, or what circumstances or what the laws were in those jurisdictions. What matters is what is in California’s interest…a socialist government in the making. Are you folks sure this is where you want to go with this social experiment called the USA? In cases like this where a State Government is clearly denying the civil rights of individuals by conspiracy and design…then they should be brought up on charges by the Federal DOJ for same. This does not violate states being able to have their own laws etc…this keeps states accountable to enforcing those laws fairly under the Constitution to all citizens of the US. ACLU and NRA should have a vested interest here and the State AG should be liable for violating US citizens US rights. Only if Ca secedes should they be able to make their own Constitution.

    1. Only if Ca secedes should they be able to make their own Constitution.

      When did disregard of state constitutions become a wingnut rallying cry?

  7. I dunno, the Constitution seems pretty clear…” the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

    If one has been convicted of a crime and completes the sentencing requirements (no longer in prison, on parole, on probation, or any supervision) then that person in again part of the People and there can be no infringement on any of his unalienable rights, including the right to keep and bear arms.

    After all, the Constitution has NO restrictions on the People, only on the State.

    1. There are penalties for crimes. They can last longer than incarceration. Removal of voting rights is an obvious example.

  8. “…part of a general hostility toward gun ownership. ‘In their zeal to prohibit as many citizens from owning firearms as possible,” At any and every opportunity, reasonable and common sense my ass.

    Time for the US Supreme Court to rule on this matter; and no matter what the media tries to avoid telling us, Ginsberg has lung cancer, likely a metastasis from one of two primary site being colon and pancreas, as has been previously diagnosed and treated. When she gets replaced within the next year it will be all over for these egregious gun control antics of the progressive states.

    At that point they may want to consider doing the the Civil War did not, secession.

    1. Who would fight to keep California from succeeding?

      1. Sure as hell not me. And they can take the Northeast and HI with them. Chicago can serve as their West Berlin flyover.

        1. Seriously. Not me either. Let them go. Then start building the border wall between Cali and Arizona/Nevada. And definitely shoot anyone coming over the top.

          1. You need to keep current. Nevada has slipped the surly bonds of decency and is quickly becoming as loony as California.

              1. These dopey fantasies with respect to splitting the United States — the idea that California would be leaving America, in particular — are fascinating. Do they give movement conservatives illusory hope as they are being painted into a shrinking corner consisting of Missibamassippi, West Virginia, Idaho, Wyoming, and a few other no-count states?

      2. Can we fight to make them go? Except the federal lands, and military bases.

        1. You guys all seem to be familiar with Kurt Schlichter;; I’ve been wondering, does writing about it make it real, by giving it a voice and a platform? As to the nature, power, and role of government we seem to have passed the level of irreconcilable differences.

          1. California in particular, like the liberal-libertarian mainstream in general, isn’t going anywhere, yahoo fantasies and delusions of adequacy notwithstanding. Conservatives, especially the Trump-friendly yahoos, are becoming increasingly concentrated in shambling backwaters and America’s fringes can’t-keep-up fringes. California has won the culture war, with America’s other modern and successful communities — why would it go anywhere, or permit the backward states to go?

      3. I would be ok with the progtards leaving. They can’t start a new country on A,erican soil. They just have to leave.

    2. I always wondered why its only the secessionists that get to vote to leave or stay and the rest of a nation never gets to vote whether to force them out.

    3. And it’s nice that she’ll be replaced after Republicans have a few more seats in the Senate, and several fewer RINOs. So Trump doesn’t have to pick somebody Flake would approve of.

  9. I guess the day after Christmas is a holiday for the “roundup” crew like Rico and the wannabe sex worker.

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  11. I’d really like it if we could normalize the requirements for voting and receiving welfare with those for buying a firearm. Better yet, with those for obtaining a concealed carry permit. The 2nd Amendment right is directly protected in the Constitution with the words “shall not be infringed”; other “rights”, like voting (which is offset here for reasons, e.g., there’s no “right” to cast a vote for President) or receiving welfare benefits are open to virtually any and all comers.

    Indeed, even making a pretense for something as simple as requiring a photo ID to vote is deemed racist totalitarianism. Since photo ID is legally required for a myriad of other non-voting actions, so I often wonder why it is that apparently only black people do not have a photo ID? Of course, most illegal immigrants won’t have a valid photo ID, so there’s that reason why they oppose the requirement.

    It’d tickle my if welfare recipients were photographed, fingerprinted, wants & warrants checked, run through NICS, forced to answer a number of probing and personal questions, then have to wait 6 months to see if they’ll be allowed to get foodstamps. On the plus side, they’d have a valid photo ID for voting!

  12. California uses any excuse to deny its residents their 2nd Amendment rights. I’m a veteran with no criminal record but can’t buy a gun because I have a medical marijuana card.

    1. Afraid you have to blame the feds for that.

      1. The Republicans in particular. Why are wingnuts so oblivious to that point, other than the general stupidity?

        1. Time to take you to the vet so we can have you put to sleep Arty.

  13. California ignoring more federal laws

    1. Why comply with federal laws when the 9th circuit runs cover for you?

    2. Countries, states, and governments are people.

      CA is a one party Lefty state. The Left doesn’t believe in rule of law, they believe in rule of the Left.

      The judiciary is a weak link in self government. They’re a tiny priesthood. Corrupt them into lawlessness and you won’t have rule of law.

  14. If there was any rule of law in CA, Robert Wilson would be impeached right now. Because clearly, he does not understand constitutional law in a federated republic.

    1. missed again Artie Smartie…. California are disregarding the FEDERAL Constitution. If they don’t like their own state constitutoin, they can and do simply rewrite it.

      But they cannot rewrite the Fed Constitution as long as they are part of the Union.

      Trump is a lot smarter than ol’ “Honest” Abe Lincoln was….. I rather think that if California were to secede he’d see how he could help them leave. Abe decided to fight a war to “make the secessioinists “come back. We can see how THAT hjas worked out long term…… “a man convinced against his will is of the same poinioin still”.

    2. charge him wiht felony perjury… he swore to uphold and defend the Constitutoin, and has regularly violated it deliverately. This case is peraps the most outrageous. Once so charged, he can no longer have firearms until acquitted…. and if convicted he’s done as a public creature slopping at the public trough.

  15. In a few years, crime will again rear its ugly head again, and a well-educated white suburban soccer mom and her children will get attacked by an ex-spouse, however, she will have no means to defend herself under the law and the cops will get there too late. Once that happens, the dems will once again learn that gun control is not a winning issue.

    1. No, they’ll demand full-on gun bans. Some conserva-cucks are already caving on red-flag laws.

  16. This is wrong and will no doubt be overturned by the courts. Thank you Reason for calling attention to this injustice. However I also believe in the old adage, “Live by the gun, die by the gun.” They are not for me. Yes I am relying on the gun nuts to protect and defend me when the time comes. #ohtheirony

    1. when the time comes

      End times believers are some of my favorite worthless right-wingers.

      1. That’s not what he meant you moron. Although it will be the ‘end time’ for you and your proggie pals.

  17. Good for them. I hope they win.
    Personally, I see absolutely no GOOD reason for permanently restricting someone’s rights after their sentence has ended. Either they’re safe to be part of the general populace, and thus no danger to said populace if they’ve got a gun… Or they’re not safe, and why the heck is their sentence over?
    Plus of course, the vast number of regulatory felonies which are not violent or immoral, number so many that no single person can know them all, and for which ignorance is generally not an excuse.

  18. This is a great article and an excellent example of why we need to stop bickering along party lines. How much more in the libertarian camp do you need to be to not see this as a massive over-extension of California’s Government into our fundamental rights? I do not own a gun, but like that I have right. I live in the suburbs, have a bunch of kids, am a terrible shot, have a crazy wife, and guns are expensive! But it is my choice. I don’t have any old felonies either, but that requirement is bullshit, let alone blocking ownership for vacated felonies.

    1. CA is a one party Lefty state, made so by immigration.

      It’s not going to get better.

      Import Not America, become Not America.

  19. Just go buy them from private parties in Nevada, Oregon or Arizona like everyone else…

  20. The masses should never be allowed to own firearms.
    Otherwise the delicate balance between authoritarianism and totalitarianism might be destroyed, and the people would have the opportunity to take back their country, establish out-dated and bourgeois freedoms and launch free trade ideals which would only destroy our beloved socialist utopia.
    Guns are for our kind, understanding and merciful secret police and the peoples’ armed forces only.

    1. I believe the Constitution secures an American’s entitlement to possess a reasonable firearm for self-defense in the home. I am increasingly fearful that gun nuts will provoke a snapback, however, that overruns my preference.

      1. Democrat voters and liberals make up a large number of gun criminals in the state.

        1. Democrats tend to be criminals.

      2. The words “reasonable firearms” nor “self-defense” nor “in the home” never appear in the 2A, so I’m not sure what your belief stems from except perhaps some serious projection.

        Given the ample contemporaneous context–having just taken up arms to free themselves of the tyrannical government of King George and thus secure a free state for themselves–the 2A is clear in its intent then and now: the People shall always be able to have arms that they can take up to overthrow a tyrannical government, and the government shall never be allowed to infringe on that right. The many contemporaneous admonitions and even Constitutional clauses to prevent the nascent federal government from maintaining a long-term standing army–the primary tool of a tyrant along with disarming the people–also make that concept manifest.

        A government that is infringing on the 2A rights is well on the way to being tyrannical.

        1. “A government that is infringing on the 2A rights is well on the way to being tyrannical.”

          Or a footnote in history, when the citizenry have had enough.

      3. The Good Rev. confirms yet again that he is not a libertarian.

      4. In D.C. v Heller 2008 SCOTUS held that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home. Specifically D.C. had a ban on handguns in general and a ban on having any gun for self-defense in the home. SCOTUS held in favor of all traditionally lawful purposes, not just a reasonable handgun in the home.

        My state’s constitution (as interpreted by the courts, attorney generals and legislatures) protects the right of the citizens to keep and bear arms for self-defense and military preparedness training, reserving to the legislature the power to regulate with a view to prevent crime so long as regulation does not unduly burden traditional lawful uses, including self-defense, military training, hunting, defending livestock from predators, recreation, and collection as curio or keepsake.

        Over the decades the state has tried (and repealed or replaced) several of the gun control policies later examined by the CDC 2003 and NRC 2004 reviews on firearms research and impact on violence which found no measurable effect from any policy aimed at legal gun ownership.

        I predict it will build to a snapback against the anti-gun extremists. Which I suspect will overrun Kirkland’s preference.

  21. One also has to wonder why conviction for an offense not involving violence should be a bar to possession of firearms.

  22. CA, where Americans can’t have guns, but illegals can vote!

    Illegals First!

  23. By what legal logic do they amputate the right to vote from the right to possess a firearm? You know they are going to let these people vote, probably without even verifying that their felony convictions were vacated and/or all conditions of their sentencing were completely fulfilled, such as paying restitution to victims and so forth.

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