Tag Archives: Kavanaugh

Thank you, Senator Feinstein

For making the pro-human/civil rights case for us, just this once. However inadvertently.

WATCH: Feinstein Tries To Nail Kavanaugh On Guns, Completely Fails
Feinstein continued by claiming that “assault weapons are not in common use.”

Kavanaugh responded by noting that “semiautomatic handguns and semiautomatic rifles are widely possessed in the United States” and that “there are millions and millions and millions of semiautomatic rifles that are possessed.”

“You’re saying the numbers determine common use?” Feinstein replied. “Common use is an activity. It’s not common storage or possession, it’s use. So what you said is that these weapons are commonly used. They’re not.”

“They’re widely possessed in the United States, senator,” Kavanaugh replied. “And they are, they are used and possessed.”

That’s mildly amusing, since Feinstein has spent decades insisting that “assault weapons” must be banned because they are so commonly used.

“And the numbers continue to grow. Between 1988 and 1997, 125 were killed in 18 mass shootings. The next decade, 1998 to 2007, 171 were killed in 21 mass shootings. And over the last 10 years, 2008 to 2017, 437 were killed in 50 mass shootings.

“That’s 89 mass shootings in the last 30 years that snuffed out the lives of more than 700 people. Additionally, many police officers killed in the line of duty are killed by assault weapons, including 1 in 5 officers killed in 2014.

But now she admits that semiautomatic firearms are not so commonly used in crime. And that’s true, looking at the firearms used in crime as a percentage of all guns, “crime guns” are perhaps just 0.0307%. The rest are used for lawful purposes like defense, hunting, target-shooting, or simply collecting.

Clearly there’s no need for a ban of devices so rarely used criminally. Thanks for noting that, Senator Feinstein.

For those unsure why “common use” is a big deal (none of my regular readers, I’m sure), it’s from the 1939 SCOTUS decision in MILLER.

“The signification attributed to the term Militia appears from the debates in the Convention, the history and legislation of Colonies and States, and the writings of approved commentators. These show plainly enough that the Militia comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense. “A body of citizens enrolled for military discipline.” And further, that ordinarily, when called for service these men were expected to appear bearing arms supplied by themselves and of the kind in common use at the time.

Feinstein knows that and is trying to get around it. Too bad she didn’t read the 2008 HELLER decision

“(f) None of the Court’s precedents forecloses the Court’s interpretation. Neither United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U. S. 542, nor Presser v. Illinois, 116 U. S. 252, refutes the individual-rights interpretation. United States v. Miller, 307 U. S. 174, does not limit the right to keep and bear arms to militia purposes, but rather limits the type of weapon to which the right applies to those used by the militia, i.e., those in common use for lawful purposes. Pp. 47–54. ”

“3. The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to self-defense) violate the Second Amendment. The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense.

And

“The traditional militia was formed from a pool of men bringing arms “in common use at the time” for lawful purposes like self-defense. “In the colonial and revolutionary war era, [small-arms] weapons used by militiamen and weapons used in defense of person and home were one and the same.” “

Keep reading

Under any of the standards of scrutiny that we have applied to enumerated constitutional rights, 27 banning from the home “the most preferred firearm in the nation to ‘keep’ and use for protection of one’s home and family,” 478 F. 3d, at 400, would fail constitutional muster.”

The Supreme Court made it rather clear that common possession for lawful purpose is common use, Constitutionally speaking, Senator.

So there we have it, by Feinstein’s admission, semiautomatic firearms are rarely used in crime (as a percentage of firearms), but they are protected by the Second Amendment as interpreted bt the Supreme Court. There’s no reason to ban them, and trying would violate the Constitution. Case closed.

But the reality is that firearms are commonly used: defensively. Even the anti-rights Violence Policy Center admits to 338,700 defensive gun ises per year. Other estimates go as high as 2.5 million. Perhaps those are the uses Feinstein wants to end.


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Cautiously Dubious: SCOTUS Nominee Brett Kavanaugh

I’m still researching this guy. I’m not overly thrilled with some political stuff in his background. On the other hand, the LA Times says this:

Kavanaugh appears to support broader gun rights under the 2nd Amendment. In 2011, he filed a 52-page dissent when the appeals court, by a 2-1 vote, upheld a District of Columbia ordinance that prohibited semiautomatic rifles Kavanaughand magazines holding more than 10 rounds. The judges in the majority, both Republican appointees, noted that several large states, including California and New York, enforced similar laws.

But Kavanaugh said the ban on semiautomatic rifles was unconstitutional because the weapons are in common use in this country. “As one who was born here, grew up in this community in the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, and has lived and worked in this area almost all of his life, I am acutely aware of the gun, drug and gang violence that has plagued all of us…. But our task is to apply the Constitution and the precedents of the Supreme Court, regardless of whether the result is one we agree with as a matter of first principles or policy,” he wrote.

Maybe. But to the LAT, anything short of full support for outlawing all firearms (except, somehow, the criminals’) looks like a rabid, pro-RKBA radical.

Then there’s this line from the National Review

“Brett Kavanaugh is basically John Roberts 2.0, a product of the Bush Administration and the conservative legal elite,” says Dan McLaughlin of the conservative “National Review.”

Joy. Another “conservative” who, once on the bench, acts as if wholely owned by the Democrats?

On RKBA, Kavanaugh appears to be acceptably constitutionally-minded. On other issues, like taxes, he’s weaker in terms of individual rights. We’ll simply have to wait out the confirmation process (which will be quite a circus; possibly even more so than the usual SCOTUS nomination).

Just remember that Kavanaugh has been nominated by a man who ran on a pro-RKBA platform, then directed the DOJ to regulate/ban inert plastic accessories as machine guns in crazed contrast to reality, opening the door to a “machine gun” ban on virtually every repeating firearm in existence.

If only I could ask questions of Kavanaugh in confirmation hearings.

  • Do words have meaning?
  • Will your decisions be based on the constitution as written, or as interpreted under the latest fad for imagined fairness in outcomes?
  • If one must demonstrate “standing” by being damaged by a law before filing suit against it, must one wait to be shot before exercising self-defense?
  • Does due process matter? Does due process still matter in ERPOs”?

That’s a start.

What questions would you like to hear during the confirmation?


Carl is an unpaid TZP volunteer. If you found this post useful, please consider dropping something in his tip jar. He could use the money, what with truck repairs and recurring bills.

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