Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

ACLU Sticks Up for the NRA?!

The civil rights group and the gun rights group don't always get along. But today the ACLU stuck up for the NRA against New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

ACLU/NRAACLU/NRAThe official view of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) remains that the Second Amendment protects a "collective right rather than an individual right." But the organization nevertheless is helping the National Rifle Association (NRA) fend off extralegal attempts by New York state officials to put it out of business.

In a brief filed in federal court today, the ACLU argues that New York's strong-arm efforts to compel banks and insurance companies to ditch the NRA as a customer represent a glaring violation of the First Amendment.

"Although public officials are free to express their opinions and may condemn viewpoints or groups they view as inimical to public welfare, they cannot abuse their regulatory authority to retaliate against disfavored advocacy organizations and to impose burdens on those organizations' ability to conduct lawful business," the ACLU says.

The ACLU's amicus brief never says the group agrees with the NRA's positions on firearms. Instead, the group invokes a long series of First Amendment cases to argue that the regulators should not use their power in office to punish political enemies.

A timeline prepared by the NRA suggests the intimidation campaign began last fall. The anti-gun group Everytown for Gun Safety met with New York officials in September 2017; a month later the Department of Financial Services began an investigation that started with a company called Lockton, which administered the NRA-branded personal liability insurance program known as Carry Guard. Despite a 20-year relationship, Lockton responded by abruptly ditching the NRA as a customer in February; so did Chubb and Lloyd's.

Emboldened by this initial success, Maria Vullo, head of the state's Department of Financial Services, sent a pair of ominous letters to all banks, financial institutions, and insurers licensed to do business in New York. Vullo warned companies to sever ties with pro-Second Amendment groups that "promote guns and lead to senseless violence" and instead heed "the voices of the passionate, courageous, and articulate young people" calling for more restrictions on firearms. All companies receiving the letter, she advised, should "review any relationships they have with the NRA or similar gun promotion organizations, and to take prompt actions to managing these risks and promote public health and safety."

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo underlined the regulatory threat in a tweet the next day: "The NRA is an extremist organization. I urge companies in New York State to revisit any ties they have to the NRA and consider their reputations, and responsibility to the public.'"

As a result of those not-very-veiled threats, the NRA says, multiple banks withdrew bids to provide basic depository services. The NRA is also worried about being able to continue producing its NRA TV channel, with hosts including Dana Loesch and Cam Edwards, unless it can obtain normal media liability insurance. (In May, NRA sued Cuomo and Vullo, a former Cuomo aide when he was attorney general. See J.D. Tuccille's Reason coverage at the time.)

"If Cuomo can do this to the NRA, then conservative governors could have their financial regulators threaten banks and financial institutions that do business with any other group whose political views the governor opposes," David Cole, the ACLU's legal director, wrote in a blog post today. "The First Amendment bars state officials from using their regulatory power to penalize groups merely because they promote disapproved ideas."

Today's brief filed by the ACLU points to examples of how liberal groups like Planned Parenthood can also be targeted by governments based on their political views, an approach that courts have shot down on First Amendment grounds:

For example, in Planned Parenthood Association of Utah v. Herbert, the Tenth Circuit held that the Planned Parenthood Association of Utah (PPAU) was likely to succeed on its First and Fourteenth Amendment claims by showing that the Government of Utah denied the PPAU government funding in order to "weaken the organization and hamper its ability to provide and advocate for abortion services." To be sure, unbiased application of facially neutral laws does not violate the First Amendment simply because those laws may affect expressive associations. But the NRA has alleged that Defendants are explicitly targeting the NRA based on its hostility to the NRA's viewpoint and its difference whether Defendants are attempting to suppress a "particularized" instance of speech or "gun promotion" writ large.

For its part, New York State insists that Cuomo's and Vullo's warnings that regulated businesses should ditch the NRA and other pro-Second Amendment groups are perfectly legal.

The letters to regulated companies "do not constitute unconstitutional threats as a matter of law," New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood said in a brief filed on August 3. The brief adds: "The Guidance Letters encouraged insurers and financial institutions to evaluate and manage risks that might arise from their dealings with gun promotion organizations in the face of the polarized political debate. Both the Guidance Letters and the Press Releases are classic government speech—they are expressing the government's position in the public gun control debate, which is entirely permissible."

Cuomo's social media announcements aren't likely to help his attorney general fend off the NRA's allegations of unlawful bias. Earlier this month, Cuomo posted on Facebook: "The regulations NY put in place are working. We're forcing the NRA into financial jeopardy. We won't stop until we shut them down."

Two days later, Cuomo, who is fending off a primary challenge next month from actress Cynthia Nixon, posted on YouTube: "New York has the NRA on the brink. Together, we can end the gun lobby's stranglehold on American politics." Cuomo titled his video: "Stand with us in the fight to end the NRA's stranglehold on American politics. VOTE SEPT. 13"

Cuomo, of course, is the same vocally anti-gun governor who, in 2013, promised the "toughest assault weapons ban in the country"—which became a problem when he belatedly realized he mandated gun magazines that don't actually exist. As far back as 2000, Cuomo referred to supporters of gun rights as "the enemy."

In its own supplemental brief filed today, the NRA warns of the slippery slope that occurs when regulatory scrutiny is weaponized against political enemies: "The state could enact onerous building regulations, then make it known that such regulations will be enforced only against landlords that rent space to the NAACP or Black Lives Matter. Or, the state could begin charging a sales tax for internet purchases, but only enforce the tax against merchants who stock books by a dissident author. The Court should not indulge this end-run around equal protection."

A hearing on New York State's motion to dismiss the lawsuit is set for September 10.

Photo Credit: ACLU/NRA

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The ACLU has completely gone off the rails.

    Its great that they want to act like they support the 2nd but theyre not fooling anyone. Their legal action should be laughed out of court.

    Banks can do whatever they want to distance themselves from gun companies.

    Then good banks that cater to every kind of customer can step in and provide non-lefty bank services. No bailouts, ever, for any reason. No low interest money from the fed either. Those lefty banks get money at prime rates. If tou want money from the fed at reduced rates, you bank with everyone, including people that sell weed.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Only this isn't about the banks right to associate with whomever they please. This seems to be more focused on the state's use of extortion to act against organizations they don't like.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    As I have said a hundred times, the US Constitution nor any state constitution allows for banning any product of service.

    Even the prohibitionists knew they needed a constitutional amendment to ban alcohol.

    If banks want to be crony capitalist state agents-fine. They are subject to the constitution like all government agents.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Doesn't look to me like the banks want to ban the NRA as a customer, but that they want to avoid retaliation by the state.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Then sue the state. Call on all those lobbying dollars.

    Dont let Lefty companies off the hook. Some of these company executives want this. They are upset hillary lost, so this is their only power play.

  • Drake||

    Exactly. They're being COERCED by the state. This is blatant intimidation, plain and simple. The banks are doing what they're doing to avoid punishment from Cuomo and his thugs. That is NOT "freedom of association". Indeed, it's the opposite.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Then sue the state.

    If you comply, the state will just keep doing it.

  • bevis the lumberjack||

    "Then sue the state."

    The NRA is suing Cuomo, Vullo, and the New York Department of Financial Services.

    Always better to know what you're talking about before you say something.

    The ACLU is dead right on this one, although since you consider them a political enemy it's not possible for you to admit it.

  • TLBD||

    The ACLU is often right. Their long creep towards positive rights makes them an enemy to liberty, though, and I think they passed that threshold a while ago.

  • Sevo||

    TLBD|8.24.18 @ 11:51PM|#
    "The ACLU is often right. Their long creep towards positive rights makes them an enemy to liberty, though, and I think they passed that threshold a while ago."

    Agreed. They got my dollars when they supported the Nazis; that was balls!
    They lost it several years ago; it is now an SJW organization.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    They're often right, but more and more it's by coincidence.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    It's like when The Master occasionally teams up with The Doctor to stop a common threat. It doesn't make The Master a good guy. It's just a question of a situational perceived common cause

  • Shirley Knott||

    Always better to know what you're talking about before you say something.


    You haven't met lc1789, I take it.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    If a bunch of authoritarian, anti-social right-wingers supported the ACLU, I would question the ACLU's path.

    As is customary, the ACLU appears to have it largely right, including with respect to the Second Amendment (acknowledging gun rights -- perhaps not in precisely the manner I would prefer -- but rejecting gun nuts' counterproductive absolutism).

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    But Arty, are not our democrat betters such as Kommissar Cuomo to be obeyed without question? You are always pontificating on this point.

  • David Nolan||

    ^ (uncontrollable laughter, while standing and applauding)

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Shorley doesnt like well thought put comments about positions.

    She is a FEELZ type of gal.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Non-responsive diversion

  • FlameCCT||

    The ACLU is right on this one although the only reason they are supporting the NRA's 1A Rights is because if this sets a precedent then all those Republican governors can use it against the ACLU, Media Matters, Planned Parenthood, and every other Progressive 501c3 organization. IOW it is more about self preservation for the ACLU and their Progressive tovarisch than the NRA.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Maga

  • David Nolan||

    Non-responsive diversion

    MAGA: My Attorney Got Arrested!

    MAGA: My Advisors Going Away!

    MAGA: My Associates Getting Allocutions!

  • FlameCCT||

    David,
    Gov. Cuomo stated that America has never been great?

  • David Nolan||

    (even worse)
    Non-Responsive
    Diversion

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Flame, don't engage 'Nolan'. It's just a Hihn sock.

  • NYer||

    "If banks want to be crony capitalist state agents-fine. They are subject to the constitution like all government agents."

    That doesn't appear to be the case in this context. The Governor, the NY AG, and the NY Dep. of Financial Services are intimidating these companies into dropping their relationships with the NRA.

    "the Department of Financial Services began an investigation that started with a company called Lockton, which administered the NRA-branded personal liability insurance program known as Carry Guard. Despite a 20-year relationship, Lockton responded by abruptly ditching the NRA as a customer in February"

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Yet some companies are not ditching the NRA. Hmm.. I wonder why? Some of these companies want this to happen so they do it and use the state as an excuse.

  • LarryA||

    Perhaps they are companies chartered someplace besides in New York.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Dont get me wrong, the state is engaging in unconstitutionalbehavior by trying to force companies to break ties with other companies for political reasons.

  • Rossami||

    Way to completely misread the case. Yes, banks can (or should be able to) do business with whoever they want. What the ACLU (and the NRA) is complaining about is New York regulators applying unconstitutional pressure on those banks.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    I knew the alt-right bigots would come out in rage on this. To show solidarity among goobers

  • theomore||

    I knew the self appointed and self anointed hard left would be here virtue signaling. Way to go on so many different sets of plain words in the constitution that you are hostile to. The constitution has within itself ways to amend it. If you do not like it then work up a amendment and get it voted into place. Trouble is that americans will not go along with your elitist positions and therefore you are trying to do away with (our constitution) the contract between americans and the government. That is why you are so anxious to bring in new voters. The flow of illegal immigrants hurt the poor people of america who you pretend to support. Another unwanted item that americans have to put up with because of your duplicity is the dead bodies of american citizens. Yet another item is the massive amounts of government money to support these illegals. Prison space is filled with illegals far in excess of their numbers in society. Myself, I like immigration, legal immigration that is. I just want control of our borders to cut down on the drugs. Who knows what else flows across our porous borders.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    I knew the self appointed and self anointed hard left would be here virtue signaling

    Did you know we libertarias would be virtue signalling calling you out?

    Why do all the puppets chant he same slogans, like virtue signalling?
    And why does THIS one have NO CLUE what the topic even is?

    Left - Right = Zero

  • Whorton||

    It's actually funny watching a leftist parading around in libertarian drag. Libertarian's would not assume a valid response to be authored by "alt-right bigots."

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Don't even bother to engage him. Even if you actually agree with him he will very quickly turn on you.

  • FlameCCT||

    "Who knows what else flows across our porous borders."

    Drug trafficking
    Human smuggling
    Child trafficking
    Gang members
    Diseases like TB, measles, chickenpox, etc.

  • Ellis Wyatt||

    Non-Responsive
    Diversion

    "Why do all the puppets chant he same slogans .... And why does THIS one have NO CLUE what the topic even is?"

  • Whorton||

    Add to that vermin such as Elilis Wyatt and the WRONG Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland.

  • rudehost||

    Yeah because nothing says bigot like opposing a state using regulatory extortion to shut down speech they don't like. Next thing you know they are going to oppose domestic spying and stuff.

    Hihln = zero

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Non-responsive
    Diversion

  • SimonP||

    Way to not even read the post.

  • damikesc||

    The banks should be frozen out of FDIC. They should not get prime rate. They should be frozen out of the national banking system. If they wish to attack me, then I feel zero obligation to support them financially.

  • KevinP||

    Dude, read the article! This is about state coercion of regulated banks and insurers!

  • damikesc||

    I do not care their reason. In the end, the banks are doing it. Want to keep NY happy? Fine. I hope they will cover deposit insurance and everything a national banking system includes. They can always tell the state to go pound sand.

  • LarryA||

    They can always tell the state to go pound sand.

    And then the state can summarily put them out of business. Which means that corporate defiance of the state doesn't help the NRA.

  • ||

    Bingo. And that's the danger here.

  • Danathar||

    Heh..NY, why am I not surprised?

    It's not like the law ever stopped them from trying something in the past...

  • Drake||

    Cuomo's a worthless piece of shit. I hope he gets taken down *somehow*, whether it's for corruption based on this [or something else], or if it's just by a bus. I'd settle for the bus, frankly. One less statist cocksucker; can't go wrong with that.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    That's not a very nice thing to say about someone who should be slowly dipped into a cauldron of acid.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Ooohhh.. woodchipper with blades of acid.

    I am so (tm) ing that.

  • Drake||

    *sighs* Yeah, yeah, I know. That wasn't very nice, was it. Let's go with your idea instead! ;)

  • TLBD||

    I'm still slightly afraid to use the word wood*******.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Preet's gone, and so is Schneiderman, his wife beating replacement.

    WOODCHIPPER.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    I would have fought those federal fuckers myself if I had been on Reason back then.

    It was nice of reason to fight, but who needs them. Fight the tyrannical fuckers in the federal gov yourself.

  • croaker||

    When he visited central New York during the recent flooding he nearly drowned. I know personally the man who dragged him out of the water, even though his inclination was to let nature take its course.

  • FlameCCT||

    Too bad Cuomo didn't contract some disease from the flood waters. Now that would be poetic justice!

  • Sevo||

    "The civil rights group and the gun rights group don't always get along. But today the ACLU stuck up for the NRA against New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo."

    OK, a page 6 "thanks" to the ACLU, with qualifications.
    Don't expect a donation.

  • LarryA||

    Agreed. Yes, the ACLU is fighting a good fight beside the NRA, and should be applauded for that.

    OTOH, they are also acting in self-defense. If courts hold that the governor of New York can kill the NRA by blackmailing banking and insurance businesses, 49 other state governors will be making lists and checking them twice.

    IMHO The second example will be Texas or another red state taking out Planned Parenthood. But ACLU knows they won't be far behind.

    Every advocacy group in the U.S., and really, every corporation, should be up in arms over this. Maybe when President Trump says, "Well, if a governor can do it…" everybody will wake up.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Yeah, Texas would try that.
    Don;t forget, the only reason they left Mexico was to retain slavery, which Mexico banned well before we did.

  • FlameCCT||

    Does it hurt being this ignorant Hihnsane?
    Or just normal for a Progressive serf?

  • Ellis Wyatt||

    Do you have anything specific? If so, stop being such a pussy and spell it out.
    My name isn't Hhn, and you mind-melded conspiratards crack me up.

    Oh, wait, are you fucking stupid on the slavery thing TOO?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Well I always knew you weren't the real Hihn. But you're the sa,e faggoty piece of shit that was posting under the Hihn handle that Reason saw fit to ban and even purge your posts.

    FYI, it really takes quite a bit for that to happen. My guess I the ban hammer will strike you again soon enough.

  • Whorton||

    And look at 'em now! Mexicans are slaves to the drug lords and criminally corrupt government. . .

  • David Nolan||

    Only alt-right goobers will find this surprising. I could mentiion their defense of Nazies marching Skokie, Illinois and their support for Citizen's United, both well known.

    Instead, when I lived in Washington state, a state Supreme Court Justice was censured for speaking to a pro-life rally, since he might some day rule on an abortion issue, Justice Richard Sanders, who i knew, went to -- who else -- the ACLU, which got the censure revoked on free speech grounds. (There would be a conflict only if he failed to recuse himself in some future abortion-related matter.)

    Yes, the ACLU defended a State Justice for a pro-life speech, at a pro-life rally, (gasp)

    Yet, some keep trying to force everyone into one of only two tribal boxes (both of which are obsolete anyhow)

    Sanders described himself as a "pro-life libertarian," then considered the highest elected libertarian in America. In a later(?) court challenge to STATE term limits on WA congresscritters. he wrote a VERY lengthy defense of term limits ... but voted to strike down the law anyhow, saying he could find nothing in the state constitution to justify term limits. For a Justice, he was a master showman for individual liberty. And a delightful smartass!

    When he returned to the Court after retiring, the Seattle Times endorsement said , "Every state court should have a Richard Sanders. But only one." Smart-asses reproduce!

  • Eddy||

    OK, but how far back was that?

    The current controversy is whether they're retreating even from their old standbys, free speech and assembly, which they used to be vigorous in defending - even, they did not hesitate to assure us, for nazis and prolifers. That was to show how far they were willing to go to defend dissent.

    Now I suppose the mantra will be "even nazis, prolifers and the NRA."

  • David Nolan||

    OK, but how far back was that?

    The most recent was ... TODAY!

    The current controversy is whether they're retreating even from their old standbys, free speech

    Current REALITY is they are not.
    And compared with Trump ............(lol)

  • Brett Bellmore||

    No, they are: This was explicitly about spiking this tactic before it gets used on some group they approve of, which is consistent with the recent document that surfaced.

  • David Nolan||

    I forgot. It's not enough to be supportive. They MUST do so for ALL the "approved" reasons, and mindlessly conform.. Because some seek ANY excuse to hate. And because mind-control

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Look, I don't expect them to defend the NRA's rights because they like the NRA. I expect them to defend the NRA's rights because they allegedly exist to defend rights.

    Instead, they're defending the NRA's rights only because they're concerned that after the NRA gets taken down, somebody might try using this technique on somebody they like. If they thought there was no chance of that, they'd be (quietly, they've got a reputation to fraudulently maintain) cheering the NRA's demise.

    I'll take the help, but their motives are no longer admirable, if they ever were.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    (Boldface added for the thinking impaired)
    .

    because they allegedly exist to defend rights.

    they're defending the NRA's rights

    Which is why they "allegedly" exist. (lol)
    Who ties your shoes?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Double hihn.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    non-responsive diversion
    (by a psycho conspirasist)

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Eddy , please don't engage him. We want him gone and ignoring and insulting without responding to his insane shit is the best way to accomplish that.

  • Sevo||

    David Nolan|8.25.18 @ 12:04AM|#
    "Only alt-right goobers will find this surprising. I could mentiion their defense of Nazies marching Skokie, Illinois and their support for Citizen's United, both well known."

    Only shitbags would bother to read Hihn's bullshit.
    Fuck off.

  • perlchpr||

    Insulting a short, unsophisticated perl script--even one explicitly written for the purposes of shitposting and goat sodomy--just seems so pointless.

    Although I suppose that it can occasionally be amusing to tease the thing. :D

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Perl is a magical language and I will not stand by and let you insult it. Good day sir

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

  • David Nolan||

    I always know when I've hit a home run.
    Sevo jumps is with aggression, personal insults and ... ALWAYS ... "Fuck off"

    *adoiring eyes*

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Yeah hihn

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Two alt-right conspirators!

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Make it three you diaper shitting pederast.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Did you keep your enemies list when you changed your name? I liked being on someone's enemies list.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    I'm on it twice.

  • Eddy||

    "USING RELIGION TO DISCRIMINATE

    "With increasing frequency, we are seeing individuals and institutions claiming a right to discriminate—by refusing to provide services to women and LGBT people—based on religious objections. The discrimination takes many forms, including the following:

    "Religiously affiliated schools firing women because they became pregnant while not married

    "Business owners refusing to provide insurance coverage for contraception for their employees

    "Graduate students, training to be social workers, refusing to counsel gay people

    "Pharmacies turning away women seeking to fill birth control prescriptions

    "Bridal salons, photo studios, and reception halls closing their doors to same-sex couples planning their weddings...

    "Through litigation, advocacy, and public education, the ACLU works to defend religious liberty and ensure that no one is discriminated against or denied services because of someone else's religious beliefs."

  • perlchpr||

    The parallels with this case are there, but this is actually more like the reality of Jim Crow, than the popular idea of what Jim Crow was.

    This isn't just companies choosing to not do business with the NRA based on their "religious beliefs", they're being forced to not do business with the NRA based on Cuomo's religious beliefs.

    It's bad enough when one jackass says "I don't wanna serve no faggots." but at least it's a manageable problem. It's a lot worse when the government mandates that service to homosexuals is illegal.

  • Eddy||

    From the ACLU blog, 2015:

    "The U.N. Human Rights Council voted today to establish a watchdog to monitor the state of privacy rights worldwide. That watchdog, called a special rapporteur, was created by a consensus vote of all members of the council. That's very good news, and it's been a long time coming."

  • Eddy||

    More, you say?

    "The ACLU Racial Justice Program actively supports affirmative action to secure racial diversity in a number of settings to help ensure equal opportunities for all people. Affirmative action is one of the most effective tools for redressing the injustices caused by our nation's historic discrimination against people of color and women, and for leveling what has long been an uneven playing field. A centuries-long legacy of racism and sexism has not been eradicated despite the gains made during the civil rights era. Avenues of opportunity for those previously excluded remain far too narrow. We need affirmative action now more than ever."

  • Sevo||

    OK, Eddy, how about an abstract?
    What are you supporting or proposing here?

  • Eddy||

    I'm not really sure. Just linking some random stuff I found from the ACLU site - emphasizing the most annoying stuff.

    Am I annoying you? Am I annoying you? I'm not touching you!

  • Eddy||

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    I think it's time to rethink this whole "free speech" thing.....

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Good for you. Stand up for your fascism. Most other Trumptards are such pussies.

  • perlchpr||

    See everyone? This is why I think it's a robot. Absolutely no ability to read for context, only pure pattern recognition based responses, usually in the form of a complete pre-packaged "rant" that we've all read before, or a couple of stock phrases cut and pasted together.

    Sarcasm can be difficult to detect on the internet, but this stupid thing is absolutely incapable of correctly interpreting it because all it has to go on is the data dictionary it was programmed with. That and an insatiable lust to anally defile baby goats.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    It might not be a robot. It may be a leftist troll following the directions of its handler.

    It's tough tell the difference sometimes. Because there isn't a difference.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    See everyone?

    YESS!

    This is why I think it's a robot. Absolutely no ability to read for context, only pure pattern recognition based responses, usually in the form of a complete pre-packaged "rant" that we've all read before, or a couple of stock phrases cut and pasted together.

    Like attacking free speech. Luckily, no assholes have supported this right-wing snowflake!

  • perlchpr||

    See what I mean? I do appreciate how simple it is to bait the thing. It really helps bolster my point that there isn't an actual organic brain behind it.

  • VinniUSMC||

    No one has ever accused Hihn, or any of his socks, of having a brain.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Two more attacks on free speech, both infantile.

    The precious snowflakes were "triggered" and demand a Safe Space.

    Left - Right = Zero.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Progtard, Obama, democrats.

    Antifa California Rosicrucians. Trilateral commission.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    I'm going to try a few things and see if it responds

  • lap83||

    Pretty bad, but I was still able to listen to more of it then the 10 hour Hillary laugh

  • Sevo||

    Eddy|8.25.18 @ 1:33AM|#
    "Am I annoying you? Am I annoying you? I'm not touching you!"

    Eddy, I asked an honest question; sorry if you took offense.

  • Eddy||

    I'm sorry sevo, you are easily the most candid and forthright person here, I shouldn't have been joking around - which is all I was doing.

  • ThanksForTheFish||

    "Affirmative action is one of the most effective tools"

    For perpetuating the differences between races by just emphasizing a different race than before.

    Jim Crow was affirmative action too.

  • Acoscirq||

    Fascinating

    Sheriff Dart in Chicago pulled the pressure tactics against credit card payers for Backpage ads back in 2015 and the ACLU decided to take a potty break. Nice of them to show up this time.

    I guess this answers the age old question whether the rich wives who fund and run the ACLU hate guns or sex workers more.

    Guns 1 Sex workers 0

  • Cyto||

    The whole "go after banking services" thing is an Obama thing.

    This started at the national level with Operation Choke Point, in which the Obama administration used threats of regulatory action to force financial institutions to cut ties with disfavored businesses, like gun stores, check cashing busenesses.... and pot dispensaries, sex workers, porn stars......

    They eventually pulled the plug on the official program, but the effect lives on. And now lower level would-be fascists are picking up the banner and charging forward in the battle to use the power of the state to leverage businesses into being their strongmen.

  • AlmightyJB||

    And one of the more higher level facist who ignored the order to shut it down, because Obama had made the CFPB unaccountable, Richard Cordray is running for governor of Ohio.

    Big Brother

  • Brett Bellmore||

    I'm just surprised that banks and insurance companies aren't considered "public accommodations". Bake the damned cake, and all that.

  • Cyto||

    Gun lobbyists are not a protected class.

    QED

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Gun ownership is, however, a protected right.

  • David Nolan||

    Gun ownership is, however, a protected right.

    Along with dozens of equal rights. All of them unalienable

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Owning wood chippers is also a protected right.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    But not sick fucks on the alt-right feeding humans into them, as they are wont to do.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Conservative, liberal progressive agenda. Nixon, Cuomo faggot racist Hihn

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Rrrrrmmmmmm. Woodchipper maintenance check.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    What, not whiny enough?

  • gaoxiaen||

    The Hatch Act defines the criminality of elected officials/criminals.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    I think that's only for electoral purposes.

  • ||

    : "The state could enact onerous building regulations, then make it known that such regulations will be enforced only against landlords that rent space to the NAACP or Black Lives Matter."

    Which is what the Right has already done against abortion providers. Extra rules and regulations that do nothing but encumber their ability to perform their service.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    It's different with abortion. The anti-abortion zealots are on a Mission From God.

  • Horny Lizard||

    I'm sure it will come as a total surprise to learn that Republicans in the state of Louisiana are using state power in an attempt to coerce banks into associating with the NRA.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Cowardly diversion

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Unlike the gun control zealots. Who needs facts when you have feelz?

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    The TRUE Believers!

    Mass movements do not need a god, but they do need a devil. Hatred unifies the True Believers."
    -Eric Hoffer, "The True Believers" (1951)

    Throughout human history, the worst moral atrocitres have been committed by those manipulated to BELIEVE they are defending some "greater good" -- the Collective, the State, the Master Race, the Party or a God. Zealots and fanatics. The militant self-righteous.
    -anonymous (1994)
  • Tony||

    Don't understand why this is surprising.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Hey buddy!

  • Duelles||

    So banks and Insurance companies in NY state can still do business with declared sociopaths who are indeed a danger to society and the same government that supports their right to harm, maim or kill the citizens of New York. I'm starting to understand. . . !

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    But enough about antifa.

  • Naaman Brown||

    As an aside: National ACLU does not take a gun rights position based on the federal 2nd Amendment.
    State ACLUs do take gun rights positions based on their states' constitutions' right to keep and bear arms provisions.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    No, the National ACLU does take a position on gun rights based on the federal 2nd amendment. Their position is that there aren't any.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Liar.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Liar

  • CatoTheChipper||

    Authoritarians of all sorts understand that access to financial services such as bank accounts, payments processing, and insurance is absolutely necessary for any organization whose relationships extend beyond its immediate area of operations. A weed dispensary, a neighborhood bowling league, a cult, or a bookie could manage to work on a cash-only basis, but it is extremely inconvenient and costly.

    American authoritarians imposed "know your customer" regulations (KYC) pursuant to the so-called Patriot Act. Libertarians had been successful in resisting earlier KYC initiatives that were advocated by drug warriors, but the panic after 9/11 made KYC irresistible. Patriot Act KYC was supposed to be used to deter terrorists by making it impossible for them to use financial services. Ashcroft and company weren't going to limit its application to preventing terrorism: under the Patriot Act, banks and other financial entities also had a duty to make "reasonable" efforts to determine that their customers were not using financial services to facilitate any sort of ordinary criminal activity.

  • CatoTheChipper||

    Politicians by their nature were almost predestined to use KYC and other regulations to destroy their political enemies by restricting access to financial services. Obama used the IRS to recognize conservative political organizations as 501(c)4, which among other things, made it difficult to access financial services. Obama then launched Operation Choke Point to end access to financial services by firms engaged in firearms and ammunition sales, coin buying and selling, drug paraphernalia, fireworks, "home-based charities", pawn shops, payday loans, and other unapproved activities, legal and illegal.

    Despite 2016 election results, progressives in so-called Blue States and in the federal administrative state are expanding their efforts to suppress their political opponents. The NY governments suppression of the NRA is one example. Paypal reportedly denied services to Jihad Watch at the instruction of MasterCard, which no doubt was responding to regulatory pressure after the SLPC put the group on it hate groups list. MasterCard and Visa have also refused services to David Horowitz for the same reason.

  • CatoTheChipper||

    The disruption of financial services strategy has clearly been expanded by progressive leftists to destroy their opponents. Its application has expanded greatly since Obama.

    Denial of financial services is all about leftist suppression of free expression by political opponents, just as the denial of social media platforms has the same agenda.

    Though the left continually harangues Trump as being opposed to freedom of the press, conservatives have unanimously opposed the application of the financial services strategy against political opponents, and Trump has already rescinded the Operation Choke Point policy and spoken out against the denial of social media to opposing political views.

  • Rock Lobster||

    Well... that was unexpected.

    The progs may be starting to understand that if unfettered federalism breaks out it could cut both ways and always at the expense of the central government, which is of course blasphemy.

  • David Nolan||

    Who explains that to the alt-right?

    Left - Right = Zero
    Which is why "the Creator" invented libertarians.

  • Rock Lobster||

    You need more BOLD CAPS!!! if your non sequitur interjections are to have any weight at all, Hihn.

    It's like you're not even trying anymore.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    non sequitor
    non se·qui·tur
    [ˌnän ˈsekwədər]
    NOUN
    a conclusion or statement that does not logically follow from the previous argument or statement.

    Pay attention
    1) A question is not a conclusion. If you need those definitions, just ask..
    2) Who explains "unfettered federalism," to the alt-right, and to their founder (Ron Paul) who lie about what it means.
    3) States rights, originated by southern racists and the KKK to defend Jim Crow laws, and now promoted by Ron Paul, is the fascist notion that SCOTUS, has no power to defend attacks on constitutionally-protected rights by state and local government -- who may enact whatever laws they want to, with no regard for the 9th and 14th Amendments.

    The most vivid example of Paulista/alt-right blasphemy was in 1957, by Arkansas governor Orval Faubus, when he activated his state militia to FORCEFULLY stop 9 black kids from registering at Little Rock's Central High School.

    President Eisenhower sent federal troops, authorized to use force if necessary, to defend the rights of 9 kids. Faubus backed down and said, in effect that "rogue judges" had overruled the people for Arkansas.

    Will we need federal troops to defend 9 gay marriages from Ron Paul? And you?

    States don't have rights. Only people do. ALL people. EQUALLY.
    Fuck off, slaver.

    -just one libertarian

  • Rock Lobster||

    BOLD CAPS!!!, Hihn... or lose me forever.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    But do you see how you screwed up?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Youre hihn too.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    I'm tempted to track down the real Hihn's phone number and start calling him.

  • Curly4||

    I would have never thought that the ACLU would be assisting the NRA in a legal matter! Surprises seems to come at the most unexpected times.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    No, they do it occasionally. The ACLU may be unprincipled, but they're not stupid, they understand the concept of fighting a threat before it reaches your own territory.

    As far as they're concerned, the NRA could go down and they'd cheer, but if somebody threatens the NRA with something that could plausibly go on to threaten some group they like, they'll go into action to protect THAT group, proactively, before it's the target.

  • David Nolan||

    This libertarian feels obliged to inform you that individual rights are ... individual rights.
    They'rs not determined by which group, tribe, race and/or ethnicity one may be a part of.
    Not even by the color of one's hair.

    They are absolute and unalienable, as ordained and endowed by our Creator.

    They are not subject to the whims, biases, preferences or goals of the Authoritarian Left or the Authoritarian Right.

    If you absolutely cannot accept and abide by the rules here, you do retain the liberty to leave ... to any other nation that better serves your own values.

  • VinniUSMC||

    "This libertarian..."

    Liar.

    "feels obliged to inform you that individual rights are ... individual rights."

    Not according to the ACLU. Which you would know if you read the first sentence of this article, Hihntard.

    Fuck off Hihnfection.

  • David Nolan||

    I wasn't talking about the ACLU. I was correcting Brett's blunder. He was talking about all rights, not just 2A, so the first sentence is not relevant here.

    It's not a lie to say that libertarians hold that individual rights are ...individual ... and absolute.

    The ACLU would be better to accept Scalia's ruling in Heller that gun rights,like all rights, are not absolute, and limited to modern versions of the weapons brought from home for militia service.

    P.S.. All the ACLU says at that link -- read it -- is that they don't defend 2A as an individual right, which is THEIR right, but guntards lie that it means an attack on 2A, as they so often lie on this issue.

    They defend the NRA, but not for the reason YOU prefer, so the Authoritarian Right goes ... authoritarian. "Never look a gift horse in the mouth." We don't all have to conform to you. This is America. Honor it, or leave.

  • Deplorable Victor||

    Maybe the ACLU isn't worthless after all.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    It's the hysteria mongers on the alt-right who are so worthless
    And among the greatest threats to our beloved Constitution

  • Rock Lobster||

    And the SPLC, Hihn. Don't forget your buddies at the SPLC.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    That's a broader issue, but of course ...
    The Authoritarian Left - the Authoritarian Right = Zero

    That's why Americans are abandoning both in droves, leaving mostly the craziest zealots in each, which drives away more, which makes each side worse, which drives away still more. It's a partisan death spiral. Left and right are now less than 40% combined, and still shrinking.

    Some say they will eventually disappear. But authoritarians came first, and have existed for thousands of years, We must keep overthrowing both. Again. And again. And again.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Hihn banned again soon. Buh bye.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Precious snowflakes demand a Safe Space

    Right-wing Snowlflakes - Left-wing Snowflakes = Zero (but a safer zero!)

  • SutureSelf||

    "The civil rights group and the gun rights group don't always get along."

    Thia could just as easily have read, "The civil rights group and the first amendment rights group don't always get along."

  • Ellis Wyatt||

    Only to those who swallow one of several lies on what the first amendment says.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online