January 25, 2019 Newsletter by Jeff Pittman
Last week we reported that the Travis County (TX) District Court ruled that the City of Austin, Texas, violated the law by barring handguns in City Hall, and assessed a NINE MILLION DOLLAR penalty against the city for the violation.
Apparently there was a typo in my source’s information. The actual fine was nine thousand dollars, not nine million. The case may be appealed. My apologies for the error.
The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has ruled that the convicted felon gun ban does not violate the Second Amendment rights of a man whose non-violent felony conviction was for falsifying his income on mortgage applications 27 years ago, and who was sentenced only to probation, 60 days of home detention, and a fine. The Court said, “Because we conclude that felons are not among the law-abiding, responsible citizens entitled to the protections of the Second Amendment, we reject his contention and affirm the district court’s dismissal order.” In other words, the Court is saying that we are using removal of the Bill of Rights as a punitive measure for former criminals who have served their penalty, and not as a protective measure to keep others safe.
The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear a challenge to a New York City ordinance that does not allow people licensed to have guns in their homes to transport the weapons outside the city. The ordinance allows residents with so-called premises licenses to take their guns to one of seven shooting ranges within the NYC limits, but forbids them to transport their guns anywhere else, including second homes and shooting ranges outside the city, even when they are unloaded and locked in a container separate from ammunition (which may also directly conflict with the federal Firearm Owners Protection Act). The New York State Rifle and Pistol Association and three individual plaintiffs brought suit. This will be the first SCOTUS gun case since 2010 and it’s predicted to be a big one. The Court’s granting cert means at least four justices expect a positive result and believe (probably with good reason) they will have a fifth justice join them, if one hasn’t already. This is a direct result of Donald Trump’s election and his SCOTUS appointments. The Brady Bunch is nervous, calling it a matter of “life or death.”
More on the AG nominee
We have a report that President Trump’s anti-gun nominee for US Attorney General, William Barr, was neck-deep in the 1992 Ruby Ridge, Idaho debacle in which the FBI and US Marshals murdered Randy Weaver’s wife and son after trying to entrap Weaver in a gun case. Barr, who was US Attorney General at that time, then defended the FBI sniper, Lon Horiuchi, who killed Vickie Weaver while she was unarmed and holding her baby daughter. The government later settled the wrongful death case with a $3 million payout to Randy Weaver and the surviving child. Barr has now also been caught lying about his involvement in the case.
Mr. Barr also commented about the Second Amendment during the current hearings, saying “…what I would look for, in assessing a regulation, is what is the burden on law-abiding people and is it proportionate to whatever benefit, in terms of safety and effectiveness, will be conferred.” That sounds like “interest balancing,” something specifically denied by the Supreme Court in Heller, though the Heller denial was of balancing government interest. Still, what part of shall not be infringed entails “balancing?” One person’s rights end where another person’s (not government’s) rights (not benefits) begin.
During his testimony, Mr. Barr said “I personally concluded that the Second Amendment creates a personal right, under the Constitution.” Nope, and any first-year law student would know that in 1876 the US Supreme Court ruled in U.S. v. Cruikshank, 92 US 542, 553, that “The right…of bearing arms for a lawful purpose…is not a right granted by the Constitution. Neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence.”
Take action here.
US Attorney reducing crime in MS?
“Whitaker also touted a lower crime rate in Jackson as of October. However, the reality on the ground is the capital city has seen 79 homicides so far in 2018 (84 by the end of 2018 — JP), compared to 64 homicides total in 2017.”
President Trump has announced his intent to renominate 51 of his judicial nominees, who didn’t receive confirmation votes during the last Congress and whose nominations expired at the end of last year. Nine of the nominations were for federal circuit court vacancies. Meanwhile, conservatives are blaming Senate Democrats for the backlog, due in part to Democratic hostility to the traditional Christian religious beliefs of some nominees.
MS Attorney General’s opinion on government disposal of firearms
The Only Ones
A disgraced former commander in the NYPD’s gun licensing bureau claimed in a court filing Wednesday that President Donald Trump and his eldest son were among celebrities and donors who got licenses without proper credentials. Others accused of benefiting from the scheme include Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, and actor and NRA Board Member Tom Selleck. The allegations did not suggest the licensees did anything wrong or were aware of bribes.
Houston, TX, police said three men are dead and two others were hospitalized after a homeowner with an AK-style rifle shot all five of them when they allegedly tried to break into his home and rob him. A neighbor witnessed the beginning of the party when he said he saw two of the perpetrators enter the home with “large rifles.”
The 21-Foot Principle
How To Spot A Bad Guy
A refreshingly neutral “Guide to Gun Ownership for the Elderly”
NRA voting members received ballots for the board of directors election in the current NRA magazine. Vote. You can “bullet vote” to increase your candidate’s odds.
You can start here: “There should be NO law infringing on the law-abiding citizen.”
SHOT Show coverage:
GunBroker.com is using FreedomCoin, a regulatory compliant cryptocurrency. This secure digital payment option is more convenient and typically less expensive than money orders, credit cards, and other digital wallets. Trust it? I don’t know.
The Wyoming (inertial) Sight Drifter
The new Burris XTR II 1-8x24mm is available in your choice of front or rear focal plane, each with a specifically designed reticle. #201018 has the front focal plane reticle, a Ballistic Circle Dot. #201019 has the rear focal plane reticle, a Ballistic Dot. $1,439
Winchester’s new 350 Legend cartridge is a straight-walled, rimless, .357 caliber rifle round designed for bullets weighing 145-265 grains. The case length is 1.71″ and is reported to be a modified, straight-walled .223 Rem. shell case. (The old .357 Maximum revolver round was 1.605″.) It is claimed to be the world’s fastest straight-walled “hunting” cartridge and is intended for hunting in jurisdictions where you are restricted to using straight-walled cartridges. Ballistics were given as a 150 gr. bullet at 2325 fps from a 20″ barrel. (A 14″ .357 Maximum does about 2000 fps with a 158 gr. bullet.)
Winchester also has the new Ranger One ammo in its law enforcement catalog. Interesting.
Browning’s Trail Force ammo is initially offered in .38 Special, and features two copper-plated lead discs enclosing a load of #9 birdshot for a total payload weight of 1/4 oz. Basically the old handloaded shot load, with lead discs instead of gas checks.
Streamlight’s ProTac 90 is a dual fuel (CR123A or AA) 300 lumen ultra compact utility light with an angled head and TEN-TAP switching. The TLR-8 G is a new compact 500 lumen weaponlight with an “eye safe” green aiming laser.
Streamlight also now has their Siege lantern in a USB rechargeable version. Really handy.
SureFire’s the new, rechargeable XR1 ultra-compact WeaponLight delivers twice the lumen output of the XC WeaponLights, and its recoil-proof LED produces 600 lumens to a distance of 80 meters.
SureFire’s new XVL2 WeaponLight and laser features a 400-lumen white light LED, a 300mW infrared illuminator, and both infrared and green aiming lasers co-aligned and slaved together for ease of zeroing.
The new Gerber spork.
Kahr and Geissele are now making AR rifles.
Caracal pistols are now made in America.
Kalashnikov USA is finally shipping its 9mm KR-9, a replica of a Russian PP-19-01 “Vitiaz” submachinegun, developed in 2004 by Victor Kalashnikov, son of the famous Mikhail Kalashnikov, the man behind AK47. The KR-9 is offered as a pistol, an SBR with a folding stock and a rifle with 16.25″ barrel. About $1300.
Check out the Strasser modular straight-pull bolt rifles.
Anti-drone guns. Probably not FAA approved, yet only available to federal agencies.
Franklin Armory’s Providence carbine fires one round per trigger pull, but is not semiautomatic. Apparently essentially a double action trigger that does all the work. No word on pull weight.
CZ’s new 1012 shotguns are inertia operated semiautomatics in walnut, black synthetic or camo synthetic varieties. 3″, 12 ga. only at this time. Only 6.5 lbs! I want to see a 20 gauge. $650-750.
Benelli’s Performance Shop now has M2 Waterfowl and M2 Turkey shotguns chambered in 20 gauge. Very impressive and not cheap. (They also have Performance Shop Super Black Eagle models for waterfowl and turkey.)
Benelli also has the new Montefeltro Silver Featherweight in 12 and 20 gauge models. 26″ barrels in 12 ga. and 24″ in 20 ga. and a shortened forend and magazine and carbon-fiber rib reduce weight. 6.2 lbs. (12 ga.) and 5.3 lbs. (20 ga.). $2000.
Grabagun.com has the .223/5.56 Ruger AR 556 with 16″ barrel, 30 round magazine, in black, with sights, for just $499 + $8 shipping.