Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Category Archives: Second Amendment

ATF Arrogance on Display: Agency Issues Enforcement of Final Rule Even After Court Determines It’s Unlawful

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, March 22, 2023:  

On Tuesday, the rogue and unconstitutional Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) issued an announcement that it was going to strictly enforce its final rule against gun dealers, even for the most minor of infractions.

In his big-boy voice, anti-gun ATF Director Steven Dettelbach declared:

That means they [gun dealers] need to run background checks and sell guns with serial numbers. That is what the ghost gun rule is about.


Today’s advisory is simple. If you’re dealing [in] firearms — including items that can be readily converted to a working firearm — ATF is going to make sure that you are following the same laws as everyone else.

The problems with his pronouncement from on high are several: Dettelbach’s agency’s rules continue to change; their enforcement puts increasing pressure on law-abiding gun dealers; and, worst of all, the rule he is enforcing has already been declared beyond the agency’s purview and therefore is unlawful.

Dettelbach accuses gun dealers of trying to subvert the new rule against ghost guns — a rule that contravenes his agency’s long-standing opinion that the pieces and parts that might make up a “ghost gun” don’t, of themselves, make them a firearm. Now, apparently, they do.

Said Dettelbach:

Some suppliers of partially complete frames or receivers appear to be attempting to willfully circumvent the rule by (1) selling parts from the type of firearms parts kit covered by the final rule in separate transactions, or (2) coordinating with other distributors to sell, market or make available individual parts that, when put together, create a frame or receiver.

In determining whether a dealer has violated his now-unlawful rule, the agency will also violate the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech:

ATF will consider the seller’s marketing conduct and materials. This may include the seller providing information on how a partially complete frame or receiver may readily be converted to a firearm, serving essentially as instructions or a guide.


It may also include internet links to templates, jigs, molds, equipment, tools or other materials that enable ready completion or assembly of the unfinished frame or receiver into a firearm.


This is because such materials may affect how “readily” the part may be converted.

And the consequences if a law-abiding gun dealer happens to step, however briefly or unintentionally, outside the agency’s ever-changing edicts?

When a supplier in such a circumstance fails to comply with the GCA’s [the unconstitutional Gun Control Act of 1968] requirements, that may constitute a willful violation of the GCA. ATF considers such conduct, and all willful violations of the GCA, an investigative priority.

Under the ATF’s old rules, that “investigative priority” would usually result in a conversation with the dealer himself, and perhaps a warning. Now, though, there is no such warning, as more former gun dealers learned the hard way last year: the closures following those “investigations” set a record in 2022.

As for the court ruling that the ATF so willfully ignored, it involved the firearm-kit maker Defense Distributed, which has had a running battle with the ATF since the invention of 3-D printers. Last November, Judge Reed O’Connor of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas granted a preliminary injunction against the ATF’s enforcement of the final rule.

On March 2, after hearing more arguments from the ATF, he made his temporary injunction permanent:

This Court previously held that any injury to the Government’s general interest [i.e., that of the Biden administration and its anti-gun ATF] in law enforcement and public safety is appreciably undermined by the Court’s preliminary determination that the Final Rule is likely unlawful.


Once again, this reasoning is strengthened by the fact that the Government’s likely ultra vires [beyond its legal authority] enforcement efforts upset decades of ATF regulatory precedent against a public that has relied on that historic posture.

And so, in words that the ATF brazenly chose to ignore in its haste to shut off the legitimate flow of legally owned firearms to law-abiding citizens, Judge O’Connor wrote:

The court grants the motion … and ORDERS that Defendants and their officers, agents, servants, and employees are enjoined from implementing and enforcing against Defense Distributed and its customers….

Ten Republican Senators Offer a Bill to Codify Heller and Bruen Decisions Into Law

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, March 17, 2023:

At first blush, the bill (which has not yet been assigned a bill number) offered by Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Tuesday to “codify” the Supreme Court’s decisions in Heller and Bruen into federal law should please law-abiding gun owners, who think they might be able to rest a little easier over threats to their rights to “keep and bear arms” as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Currently, those decisions only relate to the particular or instant cases and are not federal law. Only Congress can enact such laws, and that’s what Graham and the other nine Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee said they hope to accomplish. It would make it vastly more difficult for future Supreme Courts to overturn those two decisions if they were codified into law and not just precedents supporting future decisions.

Graham has unanimous support from the other nine Republican senators on the committee — Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and John Kennedy (R-La.) — as reflective of support for the Second Amendment and the Supreme Court’s decisions in those two landmark cases.

Said Graham:

I am very pleased that all Senate Judiciary Republicans are speaking with one voice when it comes to supporting the Second Amendment rights recognized by the Supreme Court in the Heller and Bruen decisions.


Now more than ever, it is important that Congress recognize and support that the Second Amendment is an individual right and that the right to bear arms to defend oneself is an integral part of American society.

The bill, the “Respect for the Second Amendment Act,” is barely six pages long and makes it clear that (if enacted into law) states or municipalities enacting laws that transgress the new norm — being “consistent with the United States’ historical tradition of firearm regulation” — would be in violation of those decisions now codified into law.

From the bill:

No person … may enforce … any … regulation that prohibits … the right of an individual to lawfully … possess, own, carry … a privately owned firearm or … ammunition unless the law … is consistent with the United States’ historical tradition of firearm regulation.

Infringements are enforceable by the U.S. attorney general, or in civil court by the individual citizen whose rights were infringed, with legal fees paid by the government entity issuing the regulation.

It’s pretty straightforward, according to the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) Brian Calabrese: “On behalf of our millions of members, we thank Senator Graham for sponsoring legislation to reinforce Bruen in federal law.”

For staffers at Gun Owners of America (GOA) and the National Association of Gun Rights (NAGR), however, the bill is greatly flawed. In a conversation with GOA’s director of federal affairs, Aidan Johnston, The New American was told that his group felt the bill didn’t go nearly far enough in protecting citizens’ Second Amendment rights. By referring only to decisions in Heller and Bruen, it fails to provide the actual text of the Second Amendment: “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.”

By that standard, every law and every piece of legislation, including laws that created the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Gun Control Act of 1968, would be declared unconstitutional. By default, according to Johnston, Graham’s bill, if passed, would cement into place those egregious assaults on the Second Amendment.

In speaking with staffers at the NAGR, The New American learned that the group considers Graham’s bill as just “political cover,” with Graham hoping observers wouldn’t remember his often weak and inconsistent support of the Second Amendment. That goes as well for Cornyn, whose support for the Second Amendment has been very inconsistent during his time in Congress. NAGR said this makes the offering of the bill “highly suspect.”

In reality, the bill has little chance of being passed into law. As long as the Senate is controlled by communists masquerading as Democrats, Graham’s bill is DOA.

Biden Unleashes Another Attack on the Second Amendment

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, March 15, 2023:  

While paying lip service to constitutional constraints, Joe Biden continued his administration’s attack on the Second Amendment. In his EO issued on Tuesday, he pushes the limits of power and he knows it: “It is the policy of my Administration,” said the White House press release, “[to] pursue every legally available … action to reduce gun violence.”

Even if his moves would provably reduce gun violence, they would still be unconstitutional under Article II, Section 1, Clause 1 of the Constitution: “The Executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America … he shall take care that the laws [passed by the legislative branch] be faithfully executed.” (Emphasis added.)

The occupant of the White House cannot, under the Constitution, create legislation. But that doesn’t deter Biden:

  1. He is asking the attorney general (AG), Merrick Garland, to “clarify [read: expand] the definition of who is engaged in the business of dealing in firearms, and thus required to become Federal firearms licensees (FFLs)….”;
  2. He is asking Garland and the secretaries of Defense(!), Homeland Security, Health and Human Services (including the surgeon general), and Education(!) to “encourage [read: expand] effective use of extreme risk protection orders (‘red flag’ laws)….”;
  3. He is asking his Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to determine “how gun manufacturers market firearms to minors [and] civilians, including through the use of military imagery”; and
  4. He is asking all major agencies in the executive branch to propose additional infringements of the Second Amendment “on how the Federal Government can better support the recovery, mental health, and other needs of survivors of gun violence, families of victims and survivors of gun violence, first responders to incidents of gun violence, and communities affected by gun violence.”

None of these moves will have any noticeable impact on “gun violence.” Expanding background checks wouldn’t have caught the 18-year-old shooter in Uvalde, Texas, because prior to the attack he had no criminal record and so wouldn’t have been flagged by the system.

The shooter who killed 11 people at a dance studio in Monterey Park, California, used a firearm that was banned in the state.

So-called red flag laws already infringe on the Fourth Amendment rights of citizens by denying them due process. And there’s precious little hard evidence to show that their enforcement has measurably reduced gun violence.

Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA), took Biden to task over his latest effort to infringe on precious rights enjoyed by law-abiding gun owners — Biden’s primary target:

Joe Biden is trying to sell this new gun control scheme the way he’s always done, by promising less violent crime and safer neighborhoods, but this plan isn’t going to accomplish either goal, and he knows it.


This sleight-of-hand maneuver simply makes it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to purchase firearms, while creating the impression gun dealers are crooks and the industry is unregulated.


This is just another chapter in Joe Biden’s war on gun rights. It is a diversion to the Democrat failure to keep Americans safe from violent criminals who are released without bail and are free to prey on us all.

He added:

So, Biden wants the Defense Department to buy more guns; he will blame crime on gun dealers and tell gun makers how to market their products. But he won’t tell the Justice Department to crack down on recidivist criminals; he’s not asking the courts to lock up armed felons; and he’s continuing to treat the Second Amendment as a second-class right.


Biden has always had an anti-gun agenda and on this important constitutional issue, he has never let the courts, public opinion or the Bill of Rights get in his way.

This is textbook Joe Biden. Talk tough, mak

e it appear he’s doing something about crime when he really isn’t, and ultimately just continue penalizing law-abiding gun owners for crimes they didn’t commit.


The only people who will be any safer are the criminals who ignore gun control laws already.

Do note that a careful reading of the entire EO issued Tuesday reveals nothing about a tactic that actually would reduce gun violence committed by violent criminals: pressure Soros-backed state and local attorneys general to enforce existing laws to keep convicted felons off the streets.

Biden’s true agenda is revealed once again. His target isn’t the criminals committing the violence, but the law-abiding gun owners whose ownership of firearms prevents the federal government from becoming totally tyrannical.

Second Amendment Foundation Doubles Down on Opposition to NY Gun Law

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, March 8, 2023:  

Ever since the Supreme Court ruled against New York in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen – aka “Bruen” – last summer, anti-gun, anti-freedom, anti-Second Amendment politicians in Albany have attempted to cast new and clever ways to work around that decision.

According to Gothamist, as of December 30, 2022, possession of firearms by private citizens in the Empire State is prohibited in:

• Federal, state, and local government buildings;

• Health care facilities (including behavioral health and chemical dependency);

• Libraries, public playgrounds, public parks and zoos;

• Childcare facilities;

• Nursery schools, preschools and summer camps;

• Programs for people with developmental disabilities, addiction and mental illness;

• Homeless shelters, domestic violence shelters and emergency shelters;

• Programs funded by the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance;

• Schools and colleges;

• Public transportation, airports, train stations and bus terminals;

• Places with licenses for alcohol and cannabis consumption;

• Places of worship;

• Spaces where crowds gather for performances, entertainment, gaming or sports, including theaters, stadiums, conference centers and amusement parks;

• Polling places;

• Public sidewalks or other public areas that have been blocked off for a limited time or for special events;

• Protests; and

• Times Square.

And, just to make sure that law-abiding gun owners get the message, possession is also prohibited on private property unless the owner of that property has prominently posted permission to do so.

Back in September, Brett Christian, a law-abiding gun owner who also had a concealed-carry permit, filed suit, claiming that New York’s new law was unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge John L. Sinatra, a Trump appointee, shredded the attempt by lawyers for the state to justify the outrageous infringement of Christian’s rights in his decision:

[New York] argues that private property owners have always had the right to exclude others from their property and [therefore] may exclude those carrying concealed handguns. But that right has always been one belonging to the private property owner — not to the State….


Property owners indeed have the right to exclude. But the state may not unilaterally exercise that right and, thereby, interfere with the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens who seek to carry for self-defense outside of their own homes.

He issued a temporary restraining order (TRO). The state appealed. The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) entered with its plea to make the TRO permanent:

Following its loss in New York State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n, Inc. v. Bruen, , the State of New York enacted a sweeping series of restrictions on the right to carry firearms that together rid the right to carry of much of its practical utility.


At issue in this appeal is one particularly pernicious part of the State’s law — the State’s decree that it is criminal to carry firearms on every parcel of private property throughout the State, including private property open to the public, absent the express consent of the owner or lessee of the property.


Far from being “consistent with this Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation,” New York’s Anti-Carry Default is unprecedented in the Nation’s 246-year history, and the district court properly ordered it preliminarily enjoined.

According to SAF, all private property (i.e., most of the state of New York) is now considered to be a “restricted location” under the new law, hence the name “Anti-Carry Default.”

Said Alan Gottlieb, the founder and executive VP of SAF, “The restriction is absurd. Brett Christian’s dilemma exemplifies the problem, and the very real threat of prosecution, all of our New York State members now face under this new law. Christian and others like him can’t even legally carry at a gas station or a hardware store.” Gottlieb continued,

The case for freedom from the latest attempt at infringing Second Amendment rights in New York was clearly spelled out in Christian’s November lawsuit:


The Supreme Court’s cases addressing the individual’s right to keep and bear arms — from Heller and McDonald to its June 2022 decision in Bruen – dictate that New York’s private property exclusion is equally unconstitutional.


Regulation in this area is permissible only if the government demonstrates that the current enactment is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of sufficiently analogous regulations.


… New York fails that test.

It cannot be reiterated too often: But for the appointment of constitutionalist judges such as Sinatra by Donald Trump, New York gun owners — nay, gun owners across the land — would see their precious Second Amendment rights abridged, denigrated, and denied. Thanks to Trump’s determination to nominate “originalists” to both the high court and inferior courts across the country, gun owners such as Brett Christian will retain their Second Amendment rights, even in the face of anti-gun, anti-freedom, anti-Second Amendment politicians infesting the legislatures of states such as New York.

For readers concerned about the other infringements in the new law as outlined above, nearly a dozen other lawsuits contesting them have already been filed, with similar outcomes expected.

Florida to Become 26th Permitless-carry State

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, February 21, 2023:  

Matching “permitless concealed carry” bills are progressing through Florida’s legislature. With Republican supermajorities in both the state House and Senate, passage into law with Governor Ron DeSantis’ signature is a foregone conclusion. This will make Florida the 26th state to remove the infringement of requiring a permit to carry a concealed firearm.

Celebrations, however, are muted. Nothing in either bill addresses Florida’s rule that prohibits open carrying of a firearm, even for those with permits. And that’s highly annoying to Second Amendment purists such as Dudley Brown, head of the National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR). Back in late January, when the House bill was first introduced, Brown said:

While this bill does allow for most adults to carry a concealed handgun without a permit, we’d love to see it also include open carry as well.


Gov. Ron DeSantis is already on the record supporting Constitutional Carry and [with majority] Republican control [of] the state legislature — amending the legislation to include open carry would be an even greater win for the Constitutional Carry movement.


I hope the bill sponsors are willing to amend the bill and make it stronger.

They didn’t listen, and the bills are generating lackluster support from some Republicans and delighting anti-gun Democrats who have little chance to stall either bill due to those Republican supermajorities in both houses.

Constitutional Carry isn’t synonymous with “permitless” carry. Constitutional Carry is defined as the Second Amendment defines it: “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.”

Historians accede that, at the time the amendment was added to the Constitution, the Militia was a reference to able-bodied citizens in each state. Therefore, any requirement attached to the exercise of that right is an infringement.

As the NAGR explains:

Constitutional Carry is the basic principle that if you are legally eligible to possess a firearm, you should be able to carry that weapon, open or concealed, for self-defense without government permission.

Said Brown: “Florida is one of the most populous states in America and passing Constitutional Carry into law — especially a Constitutional Carry bill which applies to all law-abiding adults — would be a major victory for the gun rights movement nationwide.”

Once the new Florida bills are passed into law, Florida residents may carry concealed without first obtaining permission, or taking a gun class, or submitting to other infringements. But carrying a firearm openly comes with a $500 fine. And the bills also limit permitless concealed carry to citizens aged 21 and over, neatly prohibiting those aged 18 through 20 from enjoying the same rights.

One therefore must be careful when parsing the language of politicians such as Florida House Speaker Paul Renner when he announced that the bills were being introduced on January 30:

Florida led the nation in allowing for concealed carry, and that extends today as we remove the government permission slip to exercise a constitutional right.

The Florida Sheriffs Association and the Florida Police Chiefs are on board with the bills as written (and likely to be signed into law). Said Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri, “This concealed carry permit requirement serves nothing for Florida, and the reason it serves nothing for Florida is because it has no bearing on who goes and buys a gun.”

The Senate version includes school-safety measures, such as expanding the school-guardian program to allow private school staff to be armed, in addition to public- and charter-school guardians.

Floridians who want to enjoy reciprocity rights in other states that don’t have permitless carry laws may still obtain a permit if they wish.

Dianne Feinstein, Oldest Senator With Worst Voting Record, to Retire

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, February 15, 2023: 

A moment of confusion arose on Tuesday when California’s senior senator, Dianne Feinstein, said she hadn’t decided about whether to run for reelection in 2024, and then, when informed by one of her staff that her office had already made that announcement that she wouldn’t, she confirmed the fact.

One reporter witnessing her confusion wrote:

Asked by reporters about her announcement to resign, [Feinstein] says “If I haven’t made that decision, I haven’t released anything.” A staffer then told the senator that a statement had been released. Feinstein responded saying “I didn’t know they put it out.”

Another reporter confirmed Feinstein’s confusion:

Feinstein: I haven’t made that decision. I haven’t released anything.


Staffer: We put out the statement.


Feinstein: You put out the statement? I didn’t know they put it out.

After 30 years in the senate, at age 89, Feinstein is the oldest sitting U.S. senator and member of Congress, and has managed another record: the poorest voting record. According to The Freedom Index compiled by The New American, Feinstein’s “lifetime” average voting record, on a scale of 0 to 100, rates a 12. This reflects her utter disregard for the U.S. Constitution and her oath to support and defend it. In two terms, she scored just a three out of 100; in another two terms she scored a five; and in the latest Congress, the 117th, her voting record, compared to the Constitution, was a zero.

In the statement that Feinstein’s staff issued, she said:

I am announcing today [that] I will not run for reelection in 2024….


Each of us was sent here to solve problems. That’s what I’ve done for the last 30 years.

What’s she’s done over the last 30 years is toe the liberal/socialist/progressive party line to the detriment of America. Consider her comment on her failed attempt to pass a federal gun ban:

If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban [on firearms], picking up every one of them … “Mr. and Mrs. America, turn ‘em all in,” I would have done it.

She succeeded in passing the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons ban. And when it expired 10 years later (without proof that it had any salutary impact on gun violence) she tried to have it renewed.

On immigration she has long pushed for granting citizenship to illegals, even those convicted of horrific crimes — aggravated felonies, domestic violence, stalking, violation of protection orders, crimes against children, crimes relating to illegal possession of firearms.

On abortion she has repeatedly voted in favor of using taxpayer monies to fund abortions here and abroad. She voted against a ban on partial-birth/late term abortions. She supported fetal cell tissue research.

On energy development, she voted consistently against approving the Keystone XL Pipeline, delaying its construction until the primary contractor finally gave it up.

On federal spending, she repeatedly voted against a balanced budget amendment, preferring instead to fund all manner of unconstitutional programs.

On healthcare, she voted for ObamaCare, and against any suggestion of reining it in after it became operational. She voted for the Real ID Act, against an amendment declaring English to be the national language, and against the Defense of Marriage Act.

During Senate confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Feinstein attacked her and implied her Catholic faith would negatively impact her rulings:

Why is it that so many of us on this [Democrat] side have this very uncomfortable feeling that dogma and law are two different things, and I think whatever a religion is, it has its own dogma. The law is totally different. The conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you.

In another incident showing her perfidy, Feinstein withheld evidence that alleged that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh had unspecified but untoward relations with an unnamed accuser 36 years earlier. She withheld it for six weeks, waiting for one week before the committee was to vote on his confirmation, hoping to derail his nomination.

Four far-left pols have leaped into the vacuum left by Feinstein’s exit: Adam Schiff (Freedom Index rating 16), Ro Khanna (FI rating 18), Barbara Lee (FI rating 27), and Katie Porter (FI rating 7).

At the moment, prognosticators are predicting Porter will win the prize for being the most liberal/communist/socialist/progressive candidate to replace Feinstein in 2024.

Twenty-five States Sue ATF Over Pistol-brace Rule

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, February 10, 2023:  

Resistance against the ATF’s pistol stabilizing brace rule continues to build. On Thursday, attorneys general from 25 states filed a lawsuit claiming that the agency’s new rule is unconstitutional and violated the principle of separation of powers that makes our federal government unique.

The lawsuit opened:

For more than a decade, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”) authorized the public to use pistol stabilizing braces, a popular firearms accessory, without federal regulation.


During that time, ATF repeatedly issued letter rulings assuring manufacturers and the public that attaching a stabilizing brace would not alter the statutory or regulatory classification of a pistol or other firearm.


As a result, millions of Americans have for years lawfully purchased stabilizing braces and pistols equipped with stabilizing braces from authorized, legitimate manufacturers with ATF’s full knowledge and express approval.

Then the Biden administration intervened:

Then everything changed. Frustrated with congressional inaction, the President of the United States ordered ATF to abandon a decade of practice under an established statutory framework and “to treat pistols modified with stabilizing braces” as “subject to the National Firearms Act.”


This “change,” the President said, would require an owner of a pistol equipped with a stabilizing brace to “pay a $200 fee and submit their name and other identifying information to the Justice Department” or face criminal penalties.


The President’s express aim was to act “without having to go through the Congress.”

This is how things get done in a dictatorship: The ruler makes the rules, decides who violates the rules, and then punishes the violator. With this rule change, Biden is on track.

Continues the lawsuit:

[T]he Rule in effect vests ATF with unbounded discretion.


And ATF has made clear exactly how it intends to exercise that  discretion, estimating that, under the Rule, 99% of pistols equipped with stabilizing braces will now be deemed subject to National Firearms Act (“NFA”) controls.

The number of firearms affected by the rule, were it allowed to stand, is between three and seven million according to the ATF. The Congressional Research Service, on the other hand, puts the number between 10 and 40 million. Regardless, the penalties for violating the NFA are harsh, both through fines and potential incarceration.

The lawsuit reviews the hypocrisy and the illegal intentions of the ATF:

The Rule … represents an abrupt reversal of ATF’s longstanding position that these items are not subject to NFA controls…


The agency charged with administering the NFA and GCA [Gun Control Act of 1968] believed for years that pistols equipped with stabilizing braces are not subject to heightened regulation, and now holds the opposite.

The states remind the court that President Biden acted as a dictator:

Without any legislative change, the President of the United States ordered ATF to abandon a decade of practice under an established statutory framework and “to treat pistols modified with stabilizing braces” as “subject to the National Firearms Act.”

The lawsuit also reminds the court that what Biden did in ordering the ATF to violate its own rulings in order to promote his anti-gun agenda violated the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution:

ATF’s Rule also construes the statute in a way that would raise grave constitutional doubts under the Second Amendment. With millions of stabilizing braces in circulation — even by ATF’s conservative estimate — braced weapons are plainly in “common use” and thus protected by the Second Amendment. (See New York State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n, Inc. v. Bruen)

This is the primary obstacle that lawyers for the Department of Justice will have to overcome in defending this lawsuit. By its own admission, the ATF has clearly and repeatedly stated that pistol braces were in “common use” and thus fall inside the Bruen rule, i.e., the ATF must justify its incursion and infringement of the Second Amendment by demonstrating that it is consistent with the nation’s historical tradition. According to the high court in Bruen, “only then may a court conclude that the individual’s conduct falls outside the Second Amendment’s ‘unqualified command.’”

West Virginia’s Attorney General Patrick Morrisey called out the ATF’s move:

Let’s call this what it is: an effort to undermine Americans’ Second Amendment right. This is an egregious final rule turning millions of common firearms accessories into “short-barreled rifles.” This is completely nonsensical regulation.


This is part of the continued attack by the Biden administration against lawful gun owners.

Morrisey added, “This is also another case of a federal agency not staying in its lane and doing the job the constitution clearly delegates to Congress—writing laws. The Separation of Powers clearly bars federal agencies from making new laws without Congressional directive.”

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita backed up Morrisey:

As long as I’m attorney general, we will never willingly cede Hoosiers’ cherished liberties to the whims of federal bureaucrats. This is a clear case of overreach by the executive branch, and we fully expect to prevail in this lawsuit.


By standing together, the individual states can stop the federal government from riding roughshod over our people’s freedoms.


Standing up to tyranny is a time-honored American tradition. It requires us not only to resist broad sweeping power grabs but also to combat the incremental chipping away of rights.

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western Division of North Dakota. Readers, as well as lawyers for the DOJ, may expect additional lawsuits to be filed over the matter. In the meantime it is hoped that one of the courts will issue a temporary restraining order against the ATF’s enforcement of the new rule while the lawsuits are pending.

Bruen Decision Continues to Support Second Amendment Right to Keep and Bear Arms

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, February 6, 2023:  

A federal law preventing someone “subject to domestic violence orders” (DVOs) from possessing “a firearm or ammunition” was tossed by a federal court last Thursday. Prior to Bruen — New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen — a federal law prohibited those under DVOs from owning firearms.

But under Bruen the legal landscape shifted in favor of the Second Amendment, and the reverberations continue to be felt across the land. That would include California, one of the most anti-gun states in the union.

In United States of America v. Zackey Rahimi, the Department of Justice tried to find historical support for its DVO rule under the new Bruen ruling. That ruling now requires that governments attempting to restrict Second Amendment rights must show historical evidence that such laws may be justified today.

In the present case, the DOJ failed:

The question presented in this case is not whether prohibiting the possession of firearms by someone subject to a domestic violence restraining order is a laudable policy goal. The question is whether 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(8) [the federal law] … is constitutional under the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution.

In the light of N.Y. State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n, Inc. v. Bruen, … it is not.

The ruling by three members of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, two of whom were nominated by President Trump and the other by President Ronald Reagan, noted that Bruen, along with D.C. v. Heller, put the onus on states seeking to infringe Second Amendment rights to provide historical support for such infringements:

Enter Bruen. Expounding on Heller, the Supreme Court held that “[w]hen the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct, the Constitution presumptively protects that conduct.”


In that context, the Government bears the burden of “justify[ing] its regulation by demonstrating that it is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.”


Put another way, “the [G]overnment must affirmatively prove that its firearms regulation is part of the historical tradition that delimits the outer bounds of the right to keep and bear arms.”

The “Government” — i.e., the federal government, represented by its Department of Justice — failed to prove it. Quoting from Bruen:

“When it comes to interpreting the Constitution, not all history is created equal. Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them.”


We thus afford greater weight to historical analogues more contemporaneous to the Second Amendment’s ratification.

The DOJ presented three such “historical references” to bolster its case in support of the federal law — and failed. Wrote the court: “We discuss in turn why each of these historical regulations falter.”

Prior to Bruen, the court had admitted that the federal law was constitutional: the ends (attempting to reduce gun violence by those under DVOs) justified the means (infringing on their rights). But Bruen now makes such laws unconstitutional:

Doubtless, 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(8) embodies salutary policy goals meant to protect vulnerable people in our society. Weighing those policy goals’ merits through the sort of means-end scrutiny our prior precedent indulged, we previously concluded that the societal benefits of § 922(g)(8) outweighed its burden on Rahimi’s Second Amendment rights.


But Bruen forecloses any such analysis in favor of a historical analogical inquiry into the scope of the allowable burden on the Second Amendment right.


Through that lens, we conclude that § 922(g)(8)’s ban on possession of firearms is an “outlier that our ancestors would never have accepted.”


Therefore, the statute is unconstitutional, and Rahimi’s conviction under that statute must be vacated.

Such adherence to the Second Amendment was met with derision and defiance in California. In a press release, California Governor Gavin Newsom declared:

A federal appeals court has ruled domestic abusers have the right to carry firearms. Where is the line? Who’s next?…


These three zealots [the three judges appointed by Trump and Reagan that made up the panel] are hellbent on a deranged vision of guns for all, leaving [the federal] government powerless to protect its people.


This is what the ultra-conservative majority of the U.S. Supreme Court wants….


Wake up, America — this assault on our safety will only accelerate.

Newsom’s state attorney general, Rob Bonta, defied the Circuit Court’s ruling:

This is a dangerous decision.… Californians should know that restraining orders, including Domestic Violence Restraining Orders, still prohibit the possession of firearms. These orders are an essential tool that remain in effect and may be requested at any time. I urge Californians to utilize these life-saving tools.

And Joe Biden’s Attorney General Merrick Garland is going to appeal the Fifth Circuit’s ruling:

Whether analyzed through the lens of Supreme Court precedent, or of the text, history, and tradition of the Second Amendment, that statute is constitutional….


Accordingly, the Department will seek further review of the Fifth Circuit’s contrary decision.

It cannot be emphasized too often: Bruen is directly attributable to Presidents Trump and Reagan, who nominated originalists to the Supreme Court. In fact, the author of Thursday’s Fifth Circuit’s decision, Judge Cory Wilson, was the 200th federal judge to be nominated by President Trump, and the sixth judge nominated by him to the Fifth Circuit.

ATF Rule on Pistol Braces Generating Major Pushback

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, February 2, 2023:  

As expected, the ATF’s extraordinary overreach declaring that pistols with braces are now rifles to be registered under the 1934 National Firearms Act (NFA) is being met with outrage and lawsuits across the land.

The ATF — the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — knew it was coming and wrote the rule anyway. Anti-gun Attorney General Merrick Garland endorsed it, saying that “keeping our communities safe from gun violence is among the [Justice] Department’s highest priorities.”

This despite receiving nearly a quarter of a million negative comments from citizens during the open public-response period prior to the rule becoming effective. This despite a letter from the Senate Republican Caucus telling Garland that the new rule, if he signed it, “would turn millions of law-abiding Americans into criminals overnight, and would constitute the largest Executive branch-imposed gun registration and confiscation scheme in American history.”

Nevertheless, Garland signed the rule change, triggering numerous lawsuits and other forms of resistance.

The first lawsuit to be filed against the ATF came from the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, Inc. — Britto v. ATF — filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas. It made it clear just how the ATF violated the law:

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”) has issued a rule reclassifying pistols with stabilizing braces (which are designed and intended to be attached to the user’s forearm) as short-barreled rifles (which are, by contrast, designed and intended to be fired from the shoulder).


ATF made this change without legal authority and despite previously and repeatedly concluding just the opposite….


ATF’s actions are unlawful.


The new rule unlawfully usurps Congressional authority by significantly expanding the definition of “rifle” under federal law and, with it, imposes potential criminal liability on millions of Americans exercising their Second Amendment rights.


Such a dramatic seizure of legislative authority violates not only the Administrative Procedures Act, but the separation of powers … and the “fundamental right” to keep and bear arms.

The second lawsuit to be filed is Mock v. Garland, brought by the Firearms Policy Coalition and also presented to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas. It not only challenges the ATF for violating the APA — the Administrative Procedures Act — and the Constitution, it also challenges, for the first time in decades, the constitutionality of the National Firearms Act of 1934 itself:

Even if the Final Rule does not violate the APA and is allowed to stand, the Agencies’ National Firearms Act (“NFA”) … laws, regulations, policies, and enforcement practices with respect to “braced pistols” that the Agencies’ [sic] have classified as “short-barreled rifles” violate the Second Amendment.

Right behind these court filings is the assurance by the Arkansas Sheriffs’ Association (ASA) that its members won’t assist federal agents seeking to enforce this unconstitutional abridgement in their state.

In 2021, Arkansas, anticipating the coming tyranny by the ATF and the federal government, passed its nullification law, Act 1012, under which

All acts, laws, orders, rules, and regulations of the United States Government that were enacted on or after January 1, 2021, that infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Arkansas Constitution, Article 2, § 5, are invalid in this state, shall not be recognized by this state, are specifically rejected by this state, and shall be considered null and void and of no effect in this state.

Wrote the ASA’s director, Scott Bradley:

We do not support assisting the federal government in any way in the enforcing of this offensive affront to the rights of law-abiding citizens of the State of Arkansas.


Criminals don’t obey the law, and when rules like this are put in place, they seek only to criminalize otherwise law-abiding citizens.

The ATF is going to have some heavy lifting to do to overcome not only these lawsuits and citizens’ and sheriffs’ resistance, but legal precedents as well. There’s Cargill v. Garland, which ruled in a nearly identical case concerning the ATF in which the agency declared that bump stocks turned rifles into machine guns:

The definition of “machinegun” as set forth in the National Firearms Act [1934] and Gun Control Act [1968] does not apply to bump stocks.

And then there’s the Bruen decision — New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen — in which the Supreme Court ruled:

When the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct [here the right to bear arms], the Constitution presumptively protects that conduct.


The government [including the ATF] must then justify its regulation by demonstrating that it is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation. Only then may a court conclude that the individual’s conduct falls outside the Second Amendment’s “unqualified command.”

Although Cargill took five years to litigate, it is more than likely that one of the courts accepting these lawsuits will issue a temporary restraining order against the ATF while the issue is being heard.

Another Win for the Second Amendment, This Time in Tennessee

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, January 26, 2023:  

When Tennessee legislators ended the requirement for most adults to get permission to carry a concealed handgun in 2021, they neatly excluded anyone between the ages of 18 and 21. Three such people, with the legal assistance of the Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC), filed suit.

Claiming their rights were being violated under the Supreme Court’s ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), they stated:

This is an action to uphold the right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. This right “guarantee(s) the individual right to possess and carry” firearms.

They further claimed their rights were being violated under the high court’s ruling in 2010’s McDonald v. City of Chicago, which confirmed that the rights guaranteed by the Second Amendment are “among those fundamental rights necessary to our system of ordered liberty.”

The complaint argued that at 18 years of age a citizen of Tennessee is considered an adult “for almost all purposes … yet the state bans such persons from carrying a loaded handgun in public for self-defense.”

While never specifically mentioning the ruling by the high court in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen, the complaint took special pains to remind the district court where the complaint was filed that any “government must … justify its regulation by demonstrating that it is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.”

Accordingly, the complaint explained:

Throughout American history, arms carrying was a right available to all peaceable citizens. Sometimes it was even a duty….


Moreover, young adults between 18 and 21 were fully protected by the Second Amendment at the time of its ratification. Hundreds of statutes from the colonial and founding eras not only permitted but required 18-to-20-year-olds to keep and bear arms.

The complaint alluded indirectly to the Bruen decision in its summary of the complaint against Tennessee:

Thus, these laws … prohibit Plaintiffs … from carrying loaded handguns in any place … in direct violation of the Second and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution under the authorities of Heller and McDonald and their progeny. [Emphasis added.]

These arguments were so persuasive that on January 23 attorneys for the state of Tennessee came to favorable terms with the plaintiffs and the court issued an “Agreed Order” restoring the rights that were violated and keeping the state from enforcing the unconstitutional law. The state must also start issuing concealed carry permits to those aged 18 to 21, and pay almost $50,000 in legal fees to the FPC.

The Agreed Order stated:

The Challenged Scheme regulating the possession and carrying of handguns that restricts individuals 18 years old to 20 years old from carrying handguns or obtaining permits to carry handguns on the basis of age alone violates the Second and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

The takeaway here is the growing influence of the Bruen decision in restoring full constitutional rights to American citizens that have been deliberately eroded over time by anti-gun politicians and judges. As Jake Fogleman, writing for The Reload, noted: “The [agreed] order adds to the growing list of legal decisions finding special restrictions on the gun rights of otherwise law-abiding adults under 21 to violate the Second Amendment.”

In December the state of Texas withdrew its attempt to ban the carrying of handguns by adults under the age of 21, and in January an Illinois judge issued a temporary restraining order against the state’s ban on “assault weapons” and “high-capacity” magazines.

The Bruen decision is keeping the lawyers at the Firearms Policy Coalition very busy: They have filed suit in Oregon over its gun control law and in Delaware over its “assault weapons” ban, and are participating in more than 70 similar cases across the country.

All of this emanates from the actions of the 45th president of the United States, Donald Trump, who kept his promise to nominate “originalists” to the Supreme Court. The reverberations flowing from his promise kept are continuing and accelerating in the long war against the private ownership of firearms in a constitutional republic.

WH Press Secretary Repeats Lie That the Clinton Assault Weapons Ban Reduced Gun Violence

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, January 25, 2023:  

Like clockwork following the California shootings, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre once again rolled out the canard that the Clinton-era assault weapons ban (the “Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act”) measurably reduced gun violence and therefore, by implication, it should be reinstated:

The last time we had an assault weapons ban on the books [1994-2003], thanks to the President [Biden was a senator then] and Senator [Dianne] Feinstein’s [D-Calif.] leadership, mass shootings actually went down.

She failed to note that the attackers in Monterey Park and Half Moon Bay used pistols and not rifles to commit their mayhem.

Biden himself repeated the lie back in March 2021 following another mass shooting:

We can ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in this country once again.


I got that done when I was a senator. It passed. It was law for the longest time, and it brought down these mass killings. We should do it again.

In 2004 Christopher Koper, then a research criminologist at the University of Pennsylvania, issued his third and final report on the results of the ban on gun violence and mass shootings. The document, “Updated Assessment of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Impacts on Gun Markets and Gun Violence, 1994-2003,” is available to the public and can be accessed here.

Said Koper:

We cannot clearly credit the ban with any of the nation’s recent drop in gun violence….


What we found in these studies was that the ban had mixed effects in reducing crimes with the banned weaponry … as a result, the ban did not appear to affect gun violence during the time it was in effect.

Koper warned that if the Clinton ban were reenacted, the reduction in gun violence would likely be too small to measure:

Should it be renewed, the ban might reduce gunshot victimizations. This effect is likely to be small at best and possibly too small for reliable measurement.

He concluded:

By most estimates, AWs [automatic weapons] were used in less than 6% of gun crimes even before the ban.


[Our research] suggests that the ban’s impact on gun violence is likely to be small.

Since Koper’s study was completed in 2004, any gradual reduction in gun violence that could be reliably traced to the ban’s impact would certainly have been noted in subsequent studies.

There have been none. But the lie that the ban reduced gun violence continues to be mouthed by politicians eager to remove firearms from private owners.

Australia’s Gun-buyback Program Is a Bust

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, January 24, 2023:  

Australia’s Attorney General (AG) tried to put the best face possible on the disastrous result of its latest gun-buyback program that began in February of 2022:

The first year of the National Permanent Firearms Amnesty was a successful event.… With just under 18,000 firearms and weapons surrendered in its first year, the permanent amnesty has provided an ongoing and robust framework for a reduction in the overall number of firearms … and has promoted public safety.

To put things in perspective, there are reportedly between 260,000 and 600,000 “illegal” (i.e., unregistered) firearms in Australia, and 18,000 of them were “surrendered” in the 12 months ending last July. That’s either seven percent or three percent of the targeted firearms privately owned.

Second, half of them were useless, non-working, or just simply relics inherited from a previous generation. Slightly more than one percent were given up by persons seeking amnesty for their possession.

The AG put lipstick on that pig:

The report released today found Australians who surrendered their firearms … were primarily motivated to do so out of a sense of responsibility or because they did not require them. [Emphasis added.]

Thirdly, private gun ownership in Australia actually increased since Australia’s experiment with gun control began. As guns.com noted, more than 1.16 million firearms have been imported into the island nation since the first buyback in 1996, resulting in some 816,000 Aussies currently owning nearly three million registered firearms.

And that number only counts those “above ground.” The black market (i.e., free market) in firearms continues to thrive. In a study released last June by Deakin University in Melbourne, criminology professor David Bright said that there is a “large pool” of illegal firearms that criminals can easily access. But police are able to “recover” only tiny fractions of them through buybacks in any given year.

Wrote Bright:

Our research found that the black market for illegal firearms is closed to the general population, but if you are well connected … it is surprisingly easy to get your hands on a gun….


Many [prison inmates who were interviewed] told us they could get a gun within a matter of hours after leaving jail — it was just that quick and easy for those who are well connected.

But Australia’s AG ignored these inconvenient facts, adding the “permanent amnesty … protect[s] the public from harm.”

However, there is no proof that such gun buybacks have any statistically significant impact on gun violence, despite many efforts to find it. A study done for the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia concluded that the country’s buyback program “did not have any large effects on reducing firearm homicide or suicide rates.”

Data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, going back to 1980, shows a steady decline in both of those rates. A study of that data resulted in authors concluding that there is “little evidence to suggest that [the buyback program] had any significant effects on firearm homicides or suicides.”

This conclusion was confirmed by another study done in the U.S. by the National Bureau of Economic Research out of Cambridge, Massachusetts:

Our estimates provide compelling evidence that GBPs (gun buyback programs) have done little to reduce gun-related crime or mortality in the United States….


GPB’s have no observable effect on gun-related crime.

Still another study, this one published in the Annals of Surgery, summed up the results from 19 different studies in both Australia and the United States, and concluded that “evidence suggests that there may be a small, improved impact on suicide prevention in older, white males, but no effect on interpersonal gun violence or homicides.” (Emphasis added.)

But governments, in Australia and in the United States, continue their quest to disarm their citizens. All they do, however, is prove that it’s “show business” for politicians trying to claim they’re doing something about gun violence.

Matt Gaetz Moves to Abolish the ATF

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, January 19, 2023:  

To Representative Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), the move last Friday by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to require citizens owning pistol braces to register them with the government was the “final straw.” On Tuesday, he rolled out a bill to abolish the rogue agency altogether.

The bill is one page long: “A Bill to abolish the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.… The [agency] is hereby abolished.”

Would that this would be so simple!

In June 2021, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene proposed the same thing but gave the agency six months to move its responsibilities to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). Her bill included:

  • Repealing all ATF regulations issued after August 1, 2020;
  • Rescinding all hiring authority for the agency;
  • Publishing a list of all the weapons it had confiscated, and then selling them to licensed firearms dealers via a public auction;
  • Putting those proceeds into a fund for Border Patrol agents killed in the line of duty as a result of one of its botched operations, Operation Fast and Furious; and
  • Using any remaining funds to fund grants to states to establish firearm safety programs.

In 2014 Representative James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) had offered a similar bill, but with some of its operations being handed off to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) rather than the FBI.

When Gaetz rolled out his bill to abolish the ATF, he said:

The continued existence of the ATF is increasingly unwarranted based on the actions they’re taking to convert otherwise law-abiding people into felons. My bill would abolish the ATF.


If that doesn’t work, we’re going to try defunding the ATF.


If that doesn’t work, we’re going to target the individual bureaucrats at the top of the ATF who have exceeded their authority in rulemaking. And if that doesn’t work, we’re going to take a meat cleaver to the statutes that the ATF believes broadly authorize their actions.

When Representative Greene presented her bill back in 2021, she said the Biden administration was using the agency to harass lawful gun owners:

Joe Biden and the radical, anti-gun Democrats want to unleash the ATF on law-abiding gun owners across America, attacking our God-given Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.


The ATF’s ongoing, unconstitutional attacks on the Second Amendment must end.

And, when Representative Sensenbrenner proposed abolishing the ATF, he also minced no words:

The ATF is a largely duplicative, scandal-ridden agency that lacks a clear mission.…


It is plagued by backlogs, funding gaps, hiring challenges and a lack of leadership.


For decades it has been branded by high-profile failures. There is also significant overlap with other agencies.

While neither of these last two bills saw the light of day (as will likely be the outcome of Gaetz’ effort), the history of the ATF shows it to be corrupt to the core. Sam Jacobs, in an article published by the Libertarian Institute in 2020, took 19 pages to review just a few of the agency’s egregious and illegal operations.

They included:

  • A review of the agency by a Senate subcommittee back in the 1980s that concluded: “Based upon these hearings, it is apparent that ATF enforcement tactics … are constitutionally, legally, and practically reprehensible”;
  • Its Siege at Ruby Ridge;
  • Its Siege at Waco, Texas;
  • Its expanded powers granted after 9/11;
  • Its harassment of gun-show buyers and sellers in Richmond, Virginia;
  • Its “baiting” of innocent Hmong refugees in Laos;
  • Its entrapment of mentally disabled teenagers;
  • What the agency actually does with all those Form 4473s gun buyers must complete to purchase a firearm;
  • What the agency does with its slush fund generated from its illegal sales of cigarettes; and
  • How it punishes whistleblowers inside the agency when they bring to light some of the agency’s illegal activities.

For readers who may be unfamiliar with some of these illegal overreaches, the source is here. Upon reading, they may agree with Gaetz, Greene, and Sensenbrenner: The time to abolish this rogue agency is long past due.

Delaware Gun Owners Sue State Over Magazine Ban

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, January 16, 2023:  

Two law-abiding gun owners, along with two pro-Second Amendment groups, filed suit last week in Delaware, challenging the state’s ban on “large capacity magazines.” The law being challenged was signed into law just seven days after the Supreme Court ruled in Bruen that such laws must now be justified by demonstrating that they are “consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.”

The challenged law, SB 6, makes it a crime to purchase, receive, possess, transfer, sell, offer to sell, or manufacture any magazine that can hold more than 17 rounds of ammunition.

The founder and executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation (one of the two groups contesting the law), Alan Gottlieb, said the new law “literally criminalizes one of the most common and important means by which Delaware citizens can exercise their right of self-defense. In effect, SB 6 makes self-defense a potential criminal act, and that must not be allowed to stand.”

Delaware, the home state of Joe Biden, is under the virtual control of the Democratic Party: The governor’s office, all statewide executive offices, large majorities in both state houses, and all seats for the state in the U.S. Congress are held by anti-gun Democrats. Predictably, rather than celebrate the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bruen, the party thumbed its nose at the decision, implementing (for the first time in the state’s history) a ban on so-called high-capacity magazines.

The law, which became effective the moment the state’s Democrat Governor John Carney signed it on June 30, immediately criminalized every law-abiding gun owner in the state who owns such a “large capacity” magazine. All such owners must immediately turn over to a law-enforcement agency the offending magazines or face criminal charges: for a first offense, a $100 fine; for a second offense, six months in jail and a $1,150 fine; for additional offenses, up to five years in jail.

The lawsuit used logic, common sense, historical tradition, and the language from both the Second and 14th Amendments to make its case against Kathy Jennings, the Democrat attorney general for the state:

  1. The AR-15 rifle, many of which come from the factory with magazines of 17 rounds or more, is owned by nearly 25 million Americans;
  2. There are, as a result, some 44 million AR-15s owned by those Americans;
  3. Those semi-automatic rifles “are very rarely used in the commission of crimes,” according to the lawsuit: “mass shootings represent an extremely small subset of all violent crime committed with a gun, and mass shootings involving firearms that feature magazines holding more than 17 rounds are an even smaller subset still”;
  4. There is “no convincing empirical evidence that a state magazine ban will have any impact at all on mass shootings”;
  5. There is “no historical tradition” for prohibiting the possession of such magazines … “indeed, until [this ban] was put in place, Delaware did not restrict possessing, purchasing, manufacturing, transferring, or selling standard capacity magazines, and no such laws existed anywhere in the United States before the 1990s”;
  6. “Firearms capable of firing multiple rounds without reloading were well known to the founding generation”; and
  7. Violent criminals “will not be meaningfully constrained by Delaware’s Ban … it will not be difficult for violent criminals to acquire them through illegal sales or importation despite Delaware’s Ban.”

Hopefully all of this will be persuasive to the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, where the suit was filed last week. But for the Democrats, such expressions of logic, common sense, and historical tradition, not to mention the aforementioned amendments to the U.S. Constitution, mean nothing.

Final ATF Rule Turns Pistols Into Rifles to Be Regulated Under National Firearms Act

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, January 16, 2023:  

Back in 2012, the ATF (the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) ruled that pistol stabilizing braces didn’t turn pistols into short-barreled rifles, and therefore they were exempt from inclusion under the 1934 National Firearms Act (NFA). The NFA is a national registry of certain firearms and accessories such as machine guns, suppressors, short-barreled rifles (barrel less than 16″) and short-barreled shotguns (barrel less than 18″). Possessing an NFA item without jumping through the proper hoops, including registration and the payment of a $200 fee for a “tax stamp,” is a felony subjecting one to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Many see the NFA as a precursor to a national registry of all privately owned firearms.

On Friday, Attorney General Merrick Garland signed a “final rule” stating that any firearm that uses a pistol brace will be “considered a ‘rifle’ or ‘firearm’ subject to regulation under the NFA.”

Garland rolled out the canard that the agency’s primary concern is public safety:

Keeping our communities safe from gun violence is among the Department’s highest priorities.


Almost a century ago, Congress determined that short-barreled rifles must be subject to heightened requirements. Today’s rule makes clear that firearm manufacturers, dealers, and individuals cannot evade these important public safety protections simply by adding accessories to pistols that transform them into short-barreled rifles.

To clarify: The ATF has little interest in keeping communities safe when it moves to disarm law-abiding citizens, or impose such onerous regulations that they effect the same end. Instead, it has from the beginning been a tool to enact gun control.

The National Firearms Act was passed in 1934 following Al Capone’s reign of terror in Chicago. While citizens were out of work and struggling just to keep food on the table during the Great Depression, the Roosevelt administration saw its chance to infringe on the Second Amendment. It passed muster with the Supreme Court, and has been a thorn in the side of law-abiding gun owners ever since.

A pistol-stabilizing brace is simply a device that, while similar in appearance to a rifle buttstock, is designed to be strapped on to the shooting arm of the user, allowing disabled people to more comfortably fire a rifle-style gun with one arm. Of course, it can also be used to shoulder-fire the weapon as a rifle. Since the ATF’s 2012 ruling that this device does not turn a firearm with a stabilizing brace and a barrel less than 16″ into a short-barreled rifle subject to the NFA, sales have skyrocketed. Estimates are that some 40 million such braces exist in the country.

That 2012 ruling has now been overturned.

ATF Director Steven Dettelbach, a hard-core anti-gun operative who previously served under Barack Obama as U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, rejoiced in the rule change:

This rule enhances public safety and prevents people from circumventing the laws Congress passed almost a century ago.


Certain so-called stabilizing braces are designed to just attach to pistols, essentially converting them into short-barreled rifles to be fired from the shoulder.


Therefore, they must be treated in the same way under the [NFA] statute.

When the rule change was first proposed there was pushback — major pushback. There were nearly a quarter of a million negative public comments made on the ATF website. There is a bill called “Stop Harassing Owners of Rifles Today Act (SHORT Act) introduced by Senator Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) that would remove short-barreled rifles, short-barreled shotguns, and certain other weapons from the NFA.

Said Marshall, “My bill is the only way to ensure the Constitutional rights of gun owners are protected against the ATF’s reckless abuse of the NFA to justify its pistol brace rule.”

Marshall’s bill, of course, won’t see the light of day in the anti-gun, Democrat-controlled Senate.

There was also a letter from the Senate Republican Caucus to AG Garland demanding that he withdraw the rule:

The way the proposed rule is written makes clear that ATF intends to bring the most common uses of the most widely possessed stabilizing braces within the purview of the NFA. Doing so would turn millions of law-abiding Americans into criminals overnight, and would constitute the largest executive branch-imposed gun registration and confiscation scheme in American history.

Of course. That is the whole point. Garland, Dettelbach, and the agency ignored all of this pushback and moved ahead with their grievous infringement of the Second Amendment anyway.

Some can take heart over the decision last week by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, Cargill v. Garland. An initial lawsuit against another ATF proposed rule change had been tossed at the district level. On appeal, a panel at the Fifth Circuit agreed. But an en banc rehearing at the First Circuit ruled against the lower court and the panel, stating,

a plain reading of the statutory language, paired with close consideration of the mechanics of a semi-automatic firearm, reveals that a bump stock is excluded from the technical definition of ‘machinegun’ set forth in the Gun Control Act and National Firearms Act.

A bump stock is not a pistol brace, but the breach by the infringement by the ATF is the same. From the Cargill ruling:

A bump stock is a firearm attachment that allows a shooter to harness the natural recoil of a semi-automatic weapon to quickly re-engage the trigger after firing, enabling him to shoot at an increased rate of speed.


When ATF first considered the type of bump stocks at issue here, it understood that they were not machineguns. ATF maintained this position for over a decade, issuing many interpretation letters to that effect to members of the public.


But ATF reversed its longstanding position in 2018, subjecting anyone who possessed a bump stock to criminal liability.

Michael Cargill gave up his bump stocks to the ATF and then sued the agency:

Appellant Michael Cargill surrendered several bump stocks to the Government following publication of the regulation at issue.


He now challenges the legality of that regulation, arguing that a bump stock does not fall within the definition of “machinegun” as set forth in federal law, and thus that ATF lacked the authority to issue a regulation purporting to define the term as such.


Cargill is correct. A plain reading of the statutory language, paired with close consideration of the mechanics of a semi-automatic firearm, reveals that a bump stock is excluded from the technical definition of “machinegun” set forth in the Gun Control Act and National Firearms Act….


The Final Rule promulgated by the ATF violates the APA [the federal statute that governs how federal agencies propose and establish rules such as this]. We therefore REVERSE the judgment of the district court and REMAND [return] with instructions to enter judgment for Cargill.

Pro-Second Amendment groups are busy crafting a similar lawsuit, hoping that the precedent set by the Fifth Circuit (which encompasses Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas) will extend to pistol braces as well.

Dozens of Illinois Sheriffs Won’t Enforce New Gun Law

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, January 13, 2023:  

More than 80 Illinois county sheriffs are refusing to enforce the state’s new gun law banning the sale, purchase, or possession of so-called assault weapons. The new law also bans magazines with capacities exceeding 10 rounds for rifles and 15 founds for pistols. In addition, the new law, while grandfathering firearms owned prior to passage of the law, requires owners of the now-offending firearms to register them with the state police.

Whiteside County Sheriff John Booker says that the law “goes after the law-abiding citizen … [that’s] what we’re upset about.” Sheriffs in Greene, Macoupin, Monroe, and Madison counties won’t be enforcing the law either.

McHenry County Sheriff Robb Tadelman announced that “neither myself nor my office will be checking to ensure that lawful gun owners register their weapons with the state, nor will we be arresting … law-abiding individuals who have been charged solely with non-compliance with this act.”

Sheriffs in Kankakee, Boone, and Winnebago counties aren’t going to enforce it.

McDonough County Sheriff Nick Petitgout called the new law “a clear violation of the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

Knox County Sheriff Jack Harlan issued a news release:

Part of my duties that I accepted upon being sworn into office was to protect the rights provided to all of us, in the Constitution. One of those enumerated rights is the right of the people to keep and bear arms, provided under the Second Amendment.


I, among many others, believe that [the new law] is a clear violation of the Second Amendment.

Edwards County Sheriff Darby Boewe posted a lengthy statement on Facebook:

Part of my duties that I accepted upon being sworn into office was to protect the rights provided to all of us, in the Constitution. One of those rights enumerated is the right of the people to KEEP and BEAR ARMS provided under the 2nd Amendment. The right to keep and bear arms for defense of life, liberty and property is regarded as an inalienable right by the people…


Therefore, as custodian of the jail and chief law enforcement officer for Edwards County, that neither myself or my office will be checking to ensure that lawful gun owners register their weapons with the state, nor will we be arresting or housing individuals that have been charged solely with non-compliance of this act.

Madison County Sheriff Jeff Conner went even further. In a joint statement with the county’s State Attorney Tom Haine, they wrote:

We feel the duty to clarify for our citizens the policy their Madison County law enforcement leaders will adopt with regard to this new situation….


As with any statute passed by the legislature and signed by the governor, it is presumed constitutional.


But we are acutely aware that this statute touches on fundamental constitutional issues and is in obvious tension with recent and binding Supreme Court precedent on the Second Amendment [i.e., New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen]. Among other things, it bans many of the most popular firearms in America, firearms that are currently in common use for lawful purposes and which law-abiding citizens have legally owned for many years.


Whatever the policy justification, such a ban is hard to square with the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision in Bruen, which stated simply: “the Second Amendment protects the possession and use of weapons that are ‘in common use at the time.’” Based on the analysis above, we expect a strong court challenge to HB 5471 in short order….


Therefore, pending further direction by the courts, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office will not expend its limited resources to check whether otherwise law-abiding gun owners have registered their weapons with the state, nor will the Madison County Sheriff’s Office be arresting or housing otherwise law-abiding individuals solely due to non-compliance with [the law].…


The citizens of Madison County can remain confident that their local law enforcement will not turn the criminal justice system against those acting within their clearly defined constitutional rights.

Without saying so directly, these Illinois county sheriffs are taking their roles as constitutional sheriffs seriously. Former Graham County, Arizona, Sheriff Richard Mack defined those roles:

“To keep the peace and to secure, defend and protect the people of this jurisdiction from threats to their liberties, their livelihoods, and the peaceable enjoyment of their property.


The nature of that solemn oath requires that the actions of the sheriff in the performance of his duty must conform to the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of this State.

The State of Illinois, represented by Governor J.B. Pritzker, rejects the whole idea of constitutional sheriffs defending the rights of those who elected them. A Pritzker spokesman declared that, contrary to the opinions expressed by those 80-some sheriffs, “the assault weapons ban is the law of Illinois. The General Assembly passed the bill, and the governor signed it into law.… Sheriffs have a constitutional duty to uphold the laws of the state [and] not pick and choose which laws they support.”

Harold Krent, a professor at Chicago-Kent College of Law, agrees with Pritzker:

The General Assembly has decided [that the gun law] is constitutional. The [state’s] attorney general has decided it’s constitutional. I think it’s an incredible risk for sheriffs to say: “We’re not going to enforce a law” because that’s encouraging a lack of respect for the law.

Various pro-Second Amendment groups, including the Second Amendment Foundation, are filing suits against the law. They have not only the Bruen decision on their side, they also have the Supreme Court’s decision in Norton v. Shelby County, decided in 1886, on their side. In that case the high court ruled:

An unconstitutional statute is not a law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties; it affords no protection; it creates no office; it is, in legal contemplation, as inoperative as though it had never been passed.

New Jersey Judge Halts State’s New Gun-control Law, Dismantles State’s Arguments Supporting It

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, January 10, 2023:  

In her issuing of a temporary restraining order (TRO) against implementation of New Jersey’s attempt to nullify the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bruen, George W. Bush appointee U.S. District Court Judge Renee Marie Bumb took the defendants to the cleaners:

Plaintiffs [three New Jersey residents holding concealed carry permits, along with the Second Amendment Foundation and other pro-Second Amendment groups] have demonstrated a probability of success on the merits of their Second Amendment challenge to the relevant provisions of [the new law] which criminalizes carrying handguns in certain “sensitive places,” … public libraries or museums, bars, restaurants, and where alcohol is served, entertainment facilities, and private property, as well as [the law’s] ban on functional firearms in vehicles.

She invoked the new standard by which such laws are to be measured, according to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bruen:

The State may regulate conduct squarely protected by the Second Amendment only if supported by a historical tradition of firearm regulation.


Here, Plaintiffs have shown that Defendants will not be able to demonstrate a history of firearm regulation to support any of the challenged provisions.


The deprivation of Plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights, as the holders of valid permits from the State to conceal carry handguns, constitutes irreparable injury, and neither the State nor the public has an interest in enforcing unconstitutional laws.


Accordingly, good cause exists, and the Court will grant the motion for temporary restraints.

As The New American previously noted, the new law that anti-gun Democrat New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed in December was “giving a raspberry to the high court.” The new law effectively turned the entire state into a “sensitive place” where no one could carry a firearm for self-defense.

In a work of surgical legal precision, Judge Bumb dissected and dismembered every attempt by attorneys trying to defend the law. The 60-page ruling is highly recommended reading to those in the freedom fight seeking an enjoyable break from the fight to see how she obliterates an enemy of the Second Amendment (the State of New Jersey).

Here are some select and especially relevant quotes from her order:

Plaintiffs decry the challenged legislation as declaring war on the Second Amendment because it essentially renders the entire State of New Jersey a “sensitive place” where firearms are prohibited.


[Plaintiffs have claimed that] New Jersey “has declared most of the State to be off limits to carry through the artifice of ‘sensitive places’”.

That “artifice” includes 25 categories of locations where it is a third-degree offense (punishable by imprisonment for up to five years) to “knowingly carry a firearm,” including schools, courthouses, childcare centers, nursing homes, polling places, government buildings, hospitals, bars and restaurants where alcohol is served, airports, parks, beaches, demonstrations, movie theaters, casinos, and other entertainment centers.

She quotes the new standard New Jersey must meet, from the Bruen decision:

When the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct, the Constitution presumptively protects that conduct.


The Government [in the Bruen case, the State of New York] must then justify its regulation by demonstrating that it is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition….


But expanding the category of “sensitive places” simply to all places of public congregation … defines the category of “sensitive places” far too broadly….


Put simply, there is no historical basis for New York to effectively declare the island of Manhattan a “sensitive place” simply because it is crowded….

Did New Jersey’s defense attorneys even come close to making a cogent defense of the intrusion under the new Bruen standard? She wrote: “The Court must answer two questions: one, does the Second Amendment’s plain text cover the challenged provision? And two, does historical evidence support the restriction?”

Her answer:

Plaintiffs have submitted sworn statements that the challenged regulations are so broad that they severely impact their ability to even leave their own home and property with their firearms, notwithstanding the fact that they were previously permitted by the State to freely do so, without fear of severe criminal penalty.


This has substantially impacted their ability to carry a handgun at all within the State.

She chose to include some especially juicy segments from the oral arguments attorneys for New Jersey tried to make in defending the new law.

At issue was how a citizen carrying a firearm would know if a private landowner wouldn’t allow him onto his property before coming onto the property:

THE COURT: [D]oes the UPS man, woman, violate the law when he gets up to the front door and the owner says you should not have come on my property if you’re armed?


MS. CAI [attorney for New Jersey]: Yes. Yes.


THE COURT: But to make it liable for trespassing under New Jersey, it has to be known to the potential trespasser ahead of time before he or she can be charged with trespassing.


This law has no such provision. This law says you can walk down the winding driveway, get to the front door and the [armed] repairmen is told [by the owner you do not have consent and] have just now violated the law, I’m calling the police.


MS. CAI: And that’s exactly what the law provides…

Wrote Judge Bumb:

But here, by Defendant’s own admission, the wrongful conduct includes scenarios in which the permit holder does not know, or even know how to know, if he has the owner’s consent to carry until it is too late.


This, by definition, is the criminalization of an innocent act, to wit, the lawful possession of a firearm.


Stated differently, by removing any requirement of a permit holder’s [knowing he is breaking the law], the legislation punishes an individual for the exercise of his Second Amendment rights.

It gets better. Here is another interchange between Attorney Cai and the court. This time the issue is the new law prohibiting a gun owner from carrying a firearm in his vehicle unless it is locked up in the trunk:

THE COURT: And so the State envisions it that if someone with a concealed carry permit wakes up and plans his day, that … he puts the firearm in the trunk.


He goes to his cousin who doesn’t want firearms. He leaves it in the trunk.


He then goes to the local market that permits firearms. He goes and he gets it out of the trunk, puts it together in public view, citizens see.


Citizens are going to get alarmed. Perhaps he’s brandishing the weapon, one might argue.


And then [he] goes to the local market, then he comes back out, he then brandishes the weapon, one could argue, puts it into the trunk and goes to another establishment where he’s not quite sure, so he puts it in the trunk and then goes up, gets the expressed consent, yes, that’s fine, goes back to his trunk, gets the firearm, assembles the firearm and then goes about and reenters the property.


That’s how the State envisions the day in the life of a gun owner?


MS. CAI: That could be, Your Honor.

Judge Bumb concluded:

In the final analysis, at some point on the line, when a constitutional right becomes so burdensome or unwieldy to exercise, it is, in effect, no longer a constitutional right.


Plaintiffs have made a convincing case that this legislation has reached that point….


Plaintiffs’ right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense can be restored only be enjoining [prohibiting] implementation of the challenged provisions.

She was not done, however. One of the phony arguments attorneys for the state trotted out was that the presence of concealed carry owners in public places actually increased the likelihood of an incident of gun violence.

She had to ask attorney Cai for such proof:

Lastly, at oral argument, this Court specifically pressed the State whether it had empirical evidence to suggest that concealed carry permit holders are responsible for gun crimes or an increase in gun crimes in New Jersey, which they cite as justification for the law.


However, the State had no such evidence.

She ended with this:

Plaintiffs have demonstrated a probability of success on the merits of their Second Amendment challenge to the relevant provisions of [the new law] which criminalizes carrying handguns in certain “sensitive places.”…


The State may regulate conduct squarely protected by the Second Amendment only if supported by a historical tradition of firearm regulation.


Here, Plaintiffs have shown that Defendants will not be able to demonstrate a history of firearm regulation to support any of the challenged provisions.


The deprivation of Plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights, as the holders of valid permits from the State to conceal carry handguns, constitutes irreparable injury, and neither the State nor the public has an interest in enforcing unconstitutional laws.


Accordingly, good cause exists, and the Court will grant the motion for temporary restraints.

ATF Keeping Permanent Records of Gun Owners

This article appeared online at  TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, January 6, 2023:  

The latest report from the FBI on its background checks reveals that Barack Obama is no longer “the best gun salesman in America,” as CNN’s Aaron Smith claimed back in 2016. At that time background checks had soared from 14 million in 2009 (Obama’s first year in office) to nearly 28 million in 2016 (his last year in office).

The title “best gun salesman in America” then fell to President Donald Trump: during his four years in office (2017 to 2020) background checks averaged nearly 30 million annually.

The mantle now rests on the shoulders of the present White House resident: in Biden’s first two years, background checks averaged more than 35 million a year.

This is no doubt partly due to concerns ordinary citizens have over protecting themselves from increasing gun violence, especially in cities and states run by anti-gun Democrats who have more concern for criminals than their victims.

And part is due to the virtual explosion in concealed carry permits, now estimated at more than 20 million. As more and more states are allowing concealed carry, the number of citizens applying for permits is increasing exponentially.

However, there is one number from the FBI report that is particularly unsettling: Since 1998, when the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) was launched to begin infringing on law-abiding citizens’ Second Amendment rights, there have been 443 million background checks!

How many of those background checks remain in the hands of the ATF — the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — in spite of laws prohibiting the government from keeping any such registry or database?

It turns out that there isn’t just one database keeping permanent records of gun owners applying for permission to purchase a firearm. There are five:

  • There is the Multiple Sale Reports database, a permanent registration database of all purchasers buying more than one firearm at a time. There are millions of permanent records here.
  • There is the Suspect Guns database, a permanent record of all firearms “suspected” of being used for criminal purposes.
  • There is the Traced Guns database, another permanent record, this one of all gun traces ordered by law enforcement across the country. There are millions of such traces in this database.
  • There is the Theft Guns database, a permanent record of firearms that are reported stolen to the ATF. This is in addition to similar database maintained by the FBI, which keeps its own registry of lost, stolen, or missing firearms.
  • And then there’s the Big One: the Out of Business Records database. When a gun dealer closes his business, all of his records are turned over to the ATF, including the hated Form 4473, which includes all the personal information the ATF would need to eventually find and confiscate those weapons from their rightful owners. The ATF reports that this is the largest database it has, with “several hundred million” records since the NICS was begun in 1998.

Millions of Americans think they are simply exercising their Second Amendment right by purchasing guns, while in fact they are giving their personal, private information to a government that increasingly reveals its intentions to one day confiscate them.

New York Judge Rules State’s Red Flag Law Unconstitutional

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, January 4, 2023:  

Justice Thomas Moran of the Supreme Court of Monroe County, New York, part of the state’s Seventh Judicial District, ruled in late December that the state’s red flag law, aka Extreme Risk Protection Order law, or ERPO, is unconstitutional.

He relied on the recent Supreme Court ruling in Bruen that any law infringing on a citizen’s rights under the Second Amendment meet a very strict standard: “The government must demonstrate that the regulation is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.”

The state’s ERPO law didn’t meet that standard, and Judge Moran tossed it:

[The law’s] goal of removing weapons from the otherwise lawful possession of them by their owners, without adequate constitutional safeguards, cannot be condoned by this Court.


While some may advocate that “the ends justify the means” in support of [the law], where those means violate a fundamental right under our Bill of Rights to achieve their ends, then the law, on [its] face, cannot stand.


Therefore, the “Temporary Extreme Risk Protection Order” (TERPO) and “Extreme Risk Protection Order” (ERPO) are deemed to be unconstitutional by this Court.… It cannot be stated clearly enough that the Second Amendment is not a second class right, nor should it ever be treated as such. [Emphasis in original.]

In reviewing the ruling, legal firm Tilem & Associates said, “This particular case highlights everything [that is] wrong with Red Flag laws,” adding:

The Petitioner who filed for the Extreme Risk Protection Order was the estranged boy friend of the Respondent who was a licensed gun owner in New York State.


He alleged that his ex-girlfriend was a danger to herself and others and obtained a Temporary Extreme Risk Protection Order.

The boyfriend cited instances dating back to 2020 to bolster his case. What the boyfriend failed to note, however, was that he himself was under a restraining order from his ex-girlfriend. So it was retaliation, pure and simple.

Which is what makes red flag laws so dangerous. Under New York’s law, and most of those in other states, anyone with a grievance can file a complaint. If granted, the “respondent” — the victim — will find police at his/her door to confiscate his/her firearms.

As the Tilem law firm notes, “extreme risk protections have become very popular in anti-gun states [like New York] and are a way for government officials to take away the Second Amendment rights of individuals who have not committed any crime.” (Emphasis added.)

The attorney representing the ex-girlfriend, Daniel Strollo, called such laws a “a very quick and easy mechanism to deprive somebody of their fundamental Second Amendment rights.”

The problem with the law, according to Strollo, is that

You have people who are essentially not medical professionals expressing medical opinions that result in the deprivation of rights.


And you have a procedure that essentially allows somebody to lose those rights without ever having gone in front of a judge.

All of which violates the Fourth Amendment as well as the Second:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

The Liberal Gun Club (which claims to “provide a pro-Second Amendment voice for left-of-center gun owners”) assured its members that the ruling by Justice Moran is likely to be appealed.

Moran’s ruling was welcomed by “right-of-center” gun owners, who correctly fear that red flag laws, if upheld, could be turned into “gun confiscation” laws applying to anyone owning a gun.

18 Republican Senators Sell Out Second Amendment in Passing Omnibus Spending Bill

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, December 29, 2022:  

In passing the $1.7 trillion spending bill that Biden has promised to sign into law shortly, 18 Republican senators (all of whom claim on their websites that they support the Second Amendment) joined with every Senate Democrat in passing the monstrous, pork-laden, and anti-Second Amendment 2023 Omnibus Appropriations Act.

After being approved by the Senate by a 68-29 vote, the bill moved to the House, where Democrats quickly passed it. Biden has confirmed that he will sign it.

Included in the 4,100-page spending bill is $858 billion for defense, another $787 billion for “non-defense” domestic spending and welfare programs, another $45 billion to shore up the corrupt Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, and 7,200 earmarks totaling over $15 billion.

Deep in the bill are found a dozen infringements on the Second Amendment, with the most pernicious and dangerous being funding to bribe state governments to pass so-called red flag laws, aka ERPOs — Extreme Risk Protection Orders.

ERPOs allow law enforcement to seize firearms from people who have committed no crime but are “believed” to be a danger to themselves or others. Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have red flag laws in place, and more than $770 million of the odious omnibus bill provides federal funding (that is, bribes) to states that enact such laws.

The money will flow to the states via Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants, which will be parceled out to states acceding to the red flag violations.

Those laws violate the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, as they may be issued without the gun owner’s knowledge, allowing his or her firearms to be confiscated without a hearing to allow a defense to be presented. This violation of due process is explained away by advocates who hold that the gun owner may appeal to the court to get his firearms back.

But this is backwards, and the 18 Republican senators who voted for it know it. They include such pro-gun worthies as Roy Blunt (Mo.), Tom Cotton (Ark.), Jim Inhofe (Okla.), and Richard Shelby (Ala.).

The danger of ERPOs is that the definition of who may be “dangerous” can be expanded — and likely will be — to include anyone who owns a firearm. And the ATF knows who those owners are. Given sufficient resources from bills like the one Biden is about to sign, the ATF will then be free to move from door to door collecting the firearms under the guise of removing those “dangers” from law-abiding citizens.

The sell-out by Republicans who claim to be “friends” of the American Republic and its guarantees spelled out in the Bill of Rights was predicted long ago by Professor Carroll Quigley of Georgetown University. In his seminal work Tragedy and Hope, published in 1966, Quigley wrote:

The argument that the two parties should represent opposed ideals and policies, one, perhaps, of the Right and the other of the Left, is a foolish idea acceptable only to doctrinaire and academic thinkers.


Instead, the two parties should be almost identical, so that the American people can throw the rascals out at any election without leading to any profound or extensive shifts in policy.


Then it should be possible to replace it, every four years if necessary, by the other party, which will be none of these things but will still pursue, with new vigor, approximately the same basic policies.

To see evidence of this, the reader is invited to review the “Freedom Index” (FI) made available by The New American here. That shows, not surprisingly, that the voting patterns of these 18 “Republican” senators range from “moderate” to “poor.” Senator Susan Collins (Maine), for example, sports a dismal 38 out of 100, while Senator Inhofe (from the dark-red conservative state of Oklahoma) has earned just a 69 out of 100. Senator Cotton from Arkansas, in a surprise to some, earns an Index rating of only 60, and Mitt Romney of Utah comes in at a disheartening 42.

Lest readers become discouraged at the selling out of our liberties by our “friends,” keep in mind those who voted against the bill, including Senators Mike Braun of Indiana (FI 80), Ted Cruz of Texas (FI 77), Bill Hagerty of Tennessee (FI 93), Mike Lee of Utah (FI 93), Rand Paul of Kentucky (FI 95), and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama (FI 87).

Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.
Copyright © 2021 Bob Adelmann