Everytown Goes Full Turnip
Everytown Goes Full Turnip
OK, OK – I know the Bloombergian Organization for Reviling Guns (BORG), otherwise known as Crazytown for Gun Confiscation, probably surpassed turnip a long time ago and has been coasting on full rutabaga for a while, but turnips are funny, so turnip it is. I like calling them the Borg – a vast collectivist hive of drones that forcibly assimilates individuals into their vast collective in order to achieve “perfection.”
Fits, doesn’t it?
So the “president” of their little hive John Feinblatt, dedicated to relieving you of your rights, penned an opinion piece for the New York Times yesterday that echoes in more detail Shannon Watts’ ignorance on Twitter a few days ago. It’s like these two share a brain – a defective brain, but a brain nonetheless.
When militia members and white supremacists descended on Charlottesville, Va., last Saturday with Nazi flags and racist placards, many of them also carried firearms openly, including semiautomatic weapons. They came to intimidate and terrify protesters and the police. If you read reports of the physical attacks they abetted, apparently their plan worked.
SEMIAUTOMATIC FIREARMS! *GASP*
Someone get this John Feinblatt creature a diaper and a set of pearls to clutch!
Yes, he’s literally crapping himself over a tool that fires a single round when the trigger is pulled! But in a transparent attempt to vilify the most common firearms in America, he’s singling out the semi-automatics as something unheard of and rare. Fact is most handguns, save for revolvers, and rifles that aren’t automatic are semi-auto. So, what’s the purpose of making them sound more dangerous than other firearms? Oh, yeah. To make the uninformed snivel loudly enough to prompt tyrannical legislators, whose only goal is re-election, to “DO SOMETHING FOR THE CHILDREN!”
And by jamming “militia members” into the same category as white supremacists Feinblatt is essentially conflating the vast majority of Americans with Nazis.
(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.
(b)The classes of the militia are—(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.
Survey says: JACKASS!
Survey also says: TRANSPARENT ATTEMPT TO VILIFY THE MILITIA, WHICH IS AN INTEGRAL PART – COMPOSED OF THE PEOPLE THEMSELVES – OF AMERICA’S BULWARK AGAINST TYRANNY.
They might try to rationalize their conduct as protected by the First and Second Amendments, but let’s not be fooled. Those who came to Charlottesville openly carrying firearms were neither conveying a nonviolent political message, nor engaged in self-defense nor protecting hearth and home.
The People’s rights are protected by the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and that means they don’t have to justify their reasons for exercising their rights to anyone, including petty, wannabe tyrannical piglets like Feinblatt. Their conduct is protected – no matter what their justifications – but let’s see how the mind-reading boob and apparently self-appointed constitutional scholar actually assesses motivations of people he does not know and does not care to know.
Plain and simple, public terror is not protected under the Constitution. That has been the case throughout history.
“Public terror” in this case appears to be anything that makes Feinblatt melt into a puddle of gelatinous, quivering goo. Throughout our history, the courts have held a fairly narrow view of what constitutes “fighting words.” In Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, the Supreme Court held insulting or fighting words are those that by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace” were not protected.
In later decisions SCOTUS overturned a statute in St. Paul prohibiting speech or symbolic expression that “arouses anger, alarm or resentment in others on the basis of race, color, creed, religion or gender” on the grounds that, even if the specific statute was limited to fighting words, it was unconstitutionally content-based and viewpoint-based because of the limitation to race-/religion-/sex-based fighting words.
And in 2011, SCOTUS held that the activities of the repugnant maggots of the Westboro Baptist “Church” were also protected speech.
Is Feinblatt REALLY going to argue that carrying a firearm openly is worse than what the WBC is doing and that somehow doing so incites “public terror?” Good Lord, the guy is unhinged! Fact is the white supremacist douchebags, only a small subset of whom were armed, clashed with the AntiFa douchebags, a subset of whom were armed with “baseball bats, clubs, bottles, and chemical sprays.”
Guess which subset of douchebags used their weapons? I’ll give you a hint: no one was shot. A woman was murdered by an extremist douchebag wielding a car, and numerous other extremist douchebags used various weapons against their enemies. But no shots were fired.
Note: In an interview with the Root, the counterprotester who used an aerosol can against some jackass wielding a flag as a weapon, identified as Corey Long, said he had planned to be nonviolent “until someone pointed a gun at my head. Then the same person pointed it at my foot and shot the ground.” Funny how the photo shows no gun, and there were no reports of shots fired.
Survey says: LYING SCUM!
And yet, Feinblatt isn’t calling for a ban on makeshift weapons or cars.
Historically, lawmakers have deemed open carry a threat to public safety. Under English common law, a group of armed protesters constituted a riot, and some American colonies prohibited public carry specifically because it caused public terror. During Reconstruction, the military governments overseeing much of the South responded to racially motivated terror (including the murder of dozens of freedmen and Republicans at the 1866 Louisiana Constitutional Convention) by prohibiting public carry either generally or at political gatherings and polling places. Later, in 1886, a Supreme Court decision, Presser v. Illinois, upheld a law forbidding groups of men to “parade with arms in cities and towns unless authorized.” For states, such a law was “necessary to the public peace, safety and good order.”
Funny, how Feinblatt makes unsubstantiated claims about our history, probably because he assumes he’ll never be called on it. Historian Clayton Cramer, whose widely-cited research effectively discredited the claims of one Michael Bellesiles about colonial gun ownership, also gives us historical insight into just how common gun ownership in the colonies was, suggesting that no one concealed their firearms, and most males carried them to public meetings, church, etc. as mandated by some colonies’ laws.
I’m also tickled at how Feinblatt pretends he’s a legal by bringing Presser into the discussion, without actually understanding (or wanting to understand) what the case was actually about. Dave Kopel – a real legal expert – has a real discussion of what Presser was about here.
The late 19th century was a period in which state governments resorted to increasingly violent means to suppress organized labor. Unsurprisingly, many labor groups formed self-defense organizations. National Guard units and other state para-miltary forces (and occasionally the U.S. Army) were used to suppress strikes. Most workers’ organizations were not interested in overthrowing the government, but only in protecting their right to choose to bargain collectively for decent working conditions and fair wages.
One prong of the governmental effort to suppress organized labor was a ban on armed parades in public; Illinois was one of the states that enacted such a ban, making it a crime for “bodies of men to associate together as military organizations, or to drill or parade with arms in cities and towns unless authorized by law…”
In response, a labor organization composed of German immigrants, Lehr und Wehr Verein staged a parade in which they carried unloaded rifles. A prosecution ensued, and the case eventually got to the Supreme Court.
The Court had no difficulty upholding the law. First, the Court said that Illinois’s legislation “does not infringe the right of the people to keep and bear arms.” Explained the Court, “The exercise of this power by the States is necessary to the public peace, safety and good order. To deny the power would be to deny the right of the State to disperse assemblages organized for sedition and treason, and the right to suppress armed mobs bent on riot and rapine.”
But the dispositive issue, according to the Court, was that, as the Court had ruled in previous cases, the entire Bill of Rights, including the Second Amendment, “is a limitation only upon the power of Congress and the National Government, and not upon that of the States.”
The case wasn’t about open carry, but about whether bodies of men could associate as an armed militia. And because the court claimed at the time that the Bill of Rights only prevented the federal government from infringing on people’s rights, it let the lower courts’ decisions stand. Feinblatt conveniently forgot a little case called McDonald v. Chicago that incorporated the Second Amendment rights of individuals by the due process clause of the 14th Amendment, preventing the states from infringing on said rights.
In other words, our political forebears would not have tolerated open carry as racially motivated terrorists practiced it in Charlottesville. They did not view open carry as protected speech. According to the framers, the First Amendment protected the right to “peaceably” — not violently or threateningly — assemble. The Second Amendment did not protect private paramilitary organizations or an individual menacingly carrying a loaded weapon. Open carry was antithetical to “the public peace.” Lawmakers were not about to let people take the law into their own hands, so they proactively and explicitly prohibited it.
In other words, Feinblatt is talking out of his ass.
Today, the law in most states is silent on open carry — and because most states do not explicitly prohibit it, it becomes de facto legal. Because it is legal, open-carry extremists take full advantage of this loophole, typically operating up to and even past the limits of the law. They carry everywhere, and the predictable result is the open carry of semiautomatic weapons in Charlottesville.
All of this explains why some states sensibly and constitutionally reject the open-carry absolutists and prohibit open carry or regulate the carrying of guns at public demonstrations, or both. For instance, Alabama prohibits bringing a firearm to a public demonstration, and Maryland has a law prohibiting guns at demonstrations and similar public gatherings, after a warning.
Except that in states and jurisdictions that explicitly ban open carry, the rate of police officer deaths was actually higher than in states that allow it (20.2 versus 17.3 per 100,000 officers)
But hey, let’s not let facts stand in the way of our histrionics.
When states tolerate open carry, they are only asking for it.
Asking for fewer dead cops? Yeah, probably.
Taking to town squares to yell past your political opponents is a rich American custom. Those public spaces and our rights to peaceable assembly and free speech make democratic self-government possible.
Does “peaceable assembly” include carrying nail-studded clubs, makeshift flamethrowers, and Molotov cocktails?
Does “peaceable assembly” include members of the counterprotester left open-carrying their firearms (something I absolutely support, by the way), or does that only include members of the right. I have a feeling I know where this hypocritical dick basket would fall on the issue, and yet, members of the “Redneck Revolt” (how utterly not bigoted at all!) “created a security perimeter around the park, most of them open-carrying tactical rifles” that day.
Open carry is not part of that tradition, and its history is that of a tool used for specifically racist ends.
This is where we bring in Clayton Cramer’s famous work, “The Racist Roots of Gun Control” to debunk Feinblatts lies.
The historical record provides compelling evidence that racism underlies gun control laws — and not in any subtle way. Throughout much of American history, gun control was openly stated as a method for keeping blacks and Hispanics “in their place,” and to quiet the racial fears of whites. This paper is intended to provide a brief summary of this unholy alliance of gun control and racism, and to suggest that gun control laws should be regarded as “suspect ideas,” analogous to the “suspect classifications” theory of discrimination already part of the American legal system.
Which is more racist: preventing minorities from defending themselves, or openly exercising one’s constitutional rights? I suspect Feinblatt knows the answer to this, but he’ll never admit it.
It corrodes our public spaces and infringes on our rights.
What right is violated by openly carrying one’s firearm? There’s no right not to be scared. There’s no right not to be offended. There’s no right not to shit your pants at the sight of a tool. So what right was violated by someone bearing arms in public?
Here’s a clue: none.
It introduces terror and intimidation, where dialogue and debate should prevail.
Dialogue and debate at the business end of a nail-studded stick or a Molotov cocktail? Really?
Rejecting open carry is not about guns. Rejecting open carry is about rejecting terror and honoring fundamental American traditions.
Merely brandishing a weapon does not constitute terror – unless you include the terror a thug feels when a gun is pointed at him to prevent him from robbing, raping, or murdering his victim, in which case, behold the field in which I grow my fucks… Rejecting open carry, despite what Feinblatt and Watts are working desperately to make you believe, is about rejecting basic human rights and the fundamental freedoms enshrined in our history and our laws.