Alan Gottlieb On Denial Of Cert In 2A Cases

Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation issued a strongly worded statement today on the Supreme Court’s denial of certiorari in virtually every Second Amendment Case before it. The only case that touches on the Second Amendment remaining is Rodriguez v. San Jose. Given that property was taken by the police and not returned, you could easily make the argument that it was a takings case and not a 2A case.

“The Supreme Court’s refusal to take a Second Amendment Foundation case falls squarely at the feet of Chief Justice John Roberts.

“He owes every gun owner in the United States an explanation about why the high court declined to hear a number of important Second Amendment cases.

“Given the fact that the Supreme Court had a cafeteria-style menu of cases from which to choose, there is no excuse why the court at this time chose to ignore the need to rule on any of these cases, and send a message to lower courts that they can no longer thumb their noses at the Heller and McDonald Supreme Court decisions affirming the individual right to keep and bear arms.

“There is still one more case pending cert before the high court that was filed by the SAF. It is known as Rodriguez v. San Jose, a firearms confiscation case out of the State of California.”

Alan is 100% correct. This needs to be laid at the feet of John Roberts. One does wonder what sort of blackmail material that the Obama Administration and/or the liberal wing of the Court has on him that he has gone so wobbly. It is either that or a pathetic need to be loved by the mainstream media elites.

He wants the “Roberts Court” to be respected. However, the Chief Justice should remember that respect is earned and not given. He sure as hell didn’t earn any respect today.

In a time when there is unrest in our streets and the pandemic has led to an increase in crime in many locations, the need for the Court to reaffirm its rulings in Heller and McDonald was now.

They had 10 chances and they blew every bloody one of them.

Supreme Court Decides To Be A Doormat

In the face of numerous US District and Appeals Courts flat out ignoring its rulings in Heller and McDonald, the Supreme Court has obviously decided they preferred to be a doormat. In today’s Orders of the Court, virtually every single case dealing with the Second Amendment had certiorari denied. The only remaining case is Rodriguez v. San Jose which involves the confiscation of firearms from a non-prohibited person. (Last sentence is a correction from the original post)

With the exception of Rogers v. Grewal, a New Jersey carry case, all the other cases were denied certiorari without any comment or dissent. I don’t count the granting of permission to file an amicus brief and then denying cert as the Court did with Mance and Cheeseman as a comment.

The across the board denial of certiorari could mean a number of things. First, it could be a strategic move by Justices Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh to not bring a case where they weren’t sure they had the vote of Chief Justice John Roberts. He seems more interested in his own legacy as it will be written by the Washington elite and liberal academia. The man has lost all semblance of a spine. You saw it with clarity in his decision in the ObamaCare case. Roberts either sees himself as the successor to Justice Kennedy’s man in the middle or has decided to go full-Souter.

Second, it could mean the more conservative justices are waiting until such time as Justice Ginsberg is off the Court in hopes that President Trump will appoint someone would vote to respect the Second Amendment. This, too, has risk as the presidential election appears to be a toss-up right now and Ginsberg keeps hanging on (and on and on) despite her health issues.

Third, a number of the justices find the Second Amendment “icky” and any attempt to go beyond Heller and McDonald is a bridge too far. Certainly the liberal four are in this camp and they are depending upon the lower courts to continue to emasculate those rulings. They consider the Second Amendment a second-class civil right.

Fourth, it means that the Roberts Court has no self-respect and doesn’t give a big rat’s ass if their rulings are roundly ignored by the lower courts. We all know that if it a lower court ignored a ruling on abortion or some other most favored “right”, the Court would have been all over it and swatted the lower court down like flies.

I will examine Justice Thomas’ dissent on the denial of certiorari in Rogers v Grewal in which Justice Kavanaugh joined in part in a subsequent blog post. There is a lot there. I do find it instructive that the only justice to actually face racial discrimination is the primary supporter on the Court of the Second Amendment.

Joe Tartaro, Obituary

Below is the obituary for Joe Tartaro posted on the funeral home’s website. There is nothing yet on his local Buffalo, NY newspaper.

From Amigone Funeral Home:

TARTARO – JOSEPH P.

June 13, 2020, age 89. Beloved husband of 63 years to the late Patricia B. (nee Burke) Tartaro; loving father of Mark J. (Dolores) Tartaro, Patricia M. “Peggy” Tartaro and Bridget F. (Laura Gorman) Tartaro; cherished grandfather of Marc (Anne), Deanna (Mike) and Joseph M.; adored great-grandfather of Kyle, Kiki and Hailey; caring brother of the late Vincent, Salvatore (late Ann), Pierina and Zena Tartaro; also survived by nieces and nephews. Joseph was a former Ad Executive for Tartaro Advertising and Former President and Editor of the Second Amendment Foundation. Arrangements by the AMIGONE FUNERAL HOME, INC. Services will be held privately and at the convenience of the family. Donations in his name may be made to the Second Amendment Foundation (saf.org) or The Buffalo and Erie County Library. Please share memories and condolences with the family at www.AMIGONE.com.

Happy 245th, US Army!

Today is the 245th birthday of the founding of the United States Army. On this day in 1775, the Second Continental Congress formed the Continental Army. George Washington was unanimously elected by the Congress to be the Commander-in-Chief of this fledgling army.

I think this calls for a little musical tribute with the Army’s official song, The Army Goes Rolling Along. It was adopted in 1956 to replace the earlier The Caissons Go Rolling Along.

There is a part of me that still prefers the earlier version especially with this version filmed in 1942.

So happy birthday to the US Army in which my father served 28 years.

Joe Tartaro RIP

I received word yesterday that Joe Tartaro has passed away. Joe was the longtime president of the Second Amendment Foundation. I was privileged to meet Joe and his daughter Peggy at many of the Gun Rights Policy Conferences that I attended.

Photo by Sean Rameswaram of WNYC
https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/radiolabmoreperfect/episodes/gun-show

From his blurb on the SAF website:

Joseph Tartaro is president of the Second Amendment Foundation and executive editor of TheGunMag.com. With Alan M. Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, he is co-editor of the monthly newsletter, The Gottlieb-Tartaro Report. In addition, he has written news and commentaries columns for firearms trade and consumer publications, as well as newspapers around the nation. He is the author of Revolt at Cincinnati and of The Great Assault Weapon Hoax, which was published in the University of Dayton Law Review, December 1994. He has been a campaign consultant for candidates and on firearms-related ballot issues, and has appeared frequently on radio and television. He is a veteran of the US Army during the Korean War; and was an editor of Pacific Stars & Stripes.

Dave Hardy at Of Arms and the Law had this to say about Joe:

Just got the word. He’d been with the gun rights movement for eons. He left the only written account I know of relating to the Cincinnati Revolt of 1977, which created the modern NRA, and of which he was one of the team of good guys. Yep, he was an established activist 43 years ago. Good man.

Dave is absolutely correct – Joe was a good man. A man of his like will be sorely missed.

Time-Lapse Map Of Allied Armies In Normandy

The above is a time lapse map of the Allied advance in France starting with the Normandy Invasion and then going for the next 87 days. Click on the map to set it in motion.

If you look closely at the 7 second mark, you will see the Falaise Pocket as it closes around a number of German divisions.

The color code is as follows:

  • Black = German
  • Blue = American
  • Orange = British
  • Red = Canadian

I found this on the “map porn” subreddit of Reddit which has a plethora of interesting maps from across the centuries.

There Are Days When You Want To Go Full Mencken

When this all began with coronavirus and the quarantines, I felt like I was living in some real life post-apocalyptic fiction novel. You know where China or Russia develops some killer virus and they infect the world – especially the Western world – with it to achieve domination. The novel then devolves into isolated groups of preppers surviving TEOTWAWKI thanks to preps, guns, and scavenging. If you have read any of the stories or books by James Wesley, Rawles, William Forstchen, A. American, Gary Ott (Tired Old Man) or Jerry D. Young, you know what I mean.

Since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of the MPD, it has morphed from PAW fiction into a recreation of Mao’s Cultural Revolution. You have the attempted shaming of anyone who dissents, you have the violence, you have the cultural artifacts from an earlier time being torn down, and the list goes on. The only thing that seems to be missing is Mao’s Little Red Book.

As to Seattle, maybe Glen Tate’s 299 Days wasn’t fiction after all.

Everytown Announces Endorsements For Senate

As Tom Knighton said in reference to the announcement that Everytown endorsed 11 Democrats for the US Senate, they “announced Senate candidates it was buying.” I think he hit the nail on the head.

As with their endorsements for the House of Representatives, they rolled out the announcement to The Hill.

The gun-control advocacy group threw its support behind 11 Democratic Senate candidates including Mark Kelly in Arizona, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Theresa Greenfield in Iowa, Sara Gideon in Maine, Rep. Ben Ray Luján in New Mexico, Cal Cunningham in North Carolina, Jaime Harrison in South Carolina and MJ Hegar in Texas.

The endorsement of Gideon is particularly notable given the group endorsed incumbent Republican Sen. Susan Collins (D-Maine) in 2014. 

The group also backed incumbent Democratic Sens. Dick Durbin (Ill.), Gary Peters (Mich.) and Tina Smith (Minn.). 

With the possible exception of Gideon, there are no surprises on this list.

Mark Kelly was a gimme given he is “Mr. Gabby Giffords” and is trying to ride the gun control train into office. Likewise, John Hickenlooper aka Hickenstupid sold his soul to Michael Bloomberg years ago.

Closer to me, Jaime Harrison is the former head of the SC Democrat Party, is a protege of House Majority Whip James Clyburn, and parlayed his work for Clyburn into a job as a lobbyist for the Podesta Group. I have been seeing his ads since early spring as our local TV stations cover the Upstate of South Carolina. If his ads were the only thing you knew about him, you would know he got a scholarship to Yale and that he taught school for a year. He never happens to mention he went to law school or that he worked for many years as a lobbyist.

Moving on to Cal Cunningham here in North Carolina, you saw a ton of ads for him early in the spring. Some so-called veterans PAC was running a lot of ads for him touting that he served in Iraq and was awarded the Bronze Star. You got the impression he was like Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) who, despite being a Harvard Law School grad, served as an infantry officer in Iraq and Afghanistan. If that was your impression, you’d be wrong. Cunningham served as a JAG attorney in the Army Reserve attached to the XVIII Airborne Corps. His Bronze Star was awarded for meritorious service overseeing a number of attorneys and paralegals. In other words, he got it for acting like the managing partner of a law firm – not for leading troops in combat.

While Cunningham served in the State Senate from 2000-2004 representing Davidson County, he now lives in Raleigh though he is still listed as an attorney in his father’s law practice in Lexington. He is also the VP and General Counsel of solid waste company WasteZero. If I had to characterize Cunningham, it would be as the John Edwards of 2020 without the narcissistic attention to hair. Cunningham has also been endorsed by the Cult of Personality known as Giffords.

One final note – Mary Jane “MJ” Hegar of Texas is in a runoff for the nomination. She faces State Sen. Royce West (D-Dallas) in the July 14th runoff. While she leads in money raised and came in first in the primary, West has the backing of most Democrats in the Texas Legislature.

First US Law To Treat Repeating Arms Differently

Attorney and Second Amendment scholar David Kopel had an interesting article published yesterday. It dealt with the racist history of gun control and how it is still being written by gun control advocates.

The article recounted the advice of journalist and civil rights activist Ida B. Wells to fellow blacks to “buy a Winchester”. As Kopel notes, Wells was the leading anti-lynching advocate of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She felt that a repeating rifle in the hands of armed black men and women was essential to lynch mobs.

On June 25, 1892, Wells penned an iconic article for the New York Age, which was reprinted as a nationally circulated pamphlet, “Southern Horrors.” After noting cases in which lynch mobs had been defeated by armed blacks, Wells continued: “The lesson this teaches and which every Afro-American should ponder well is that a Winchester rifle should have a place of honor in every black home, and it should be used for the protection which the law refuses to give.

“When the white man who is always the aggressor knows he runs as great a risk biting the dust every time his Afro-American victim does, he will have greater respect for Afro-American life. The more the Afro-American yields and cringes and begs, the more he has to do so, the more he is insulted, outraged, lynched.”

Wells was referring to an incident in Jacksonville, Florida in which armed black men with their repeating rifles prevented a black prisoner from being lynched.

The result of this incident is that that Florida legislature enacted a gun control law in the next session that required a license to carry or possess “a pistol, Winchester rifle or other repeating rifle.”

This appears to be the first American statute that treated repeating arms differently from other arms. The 1893 Florida tradition is continued today by states such as California and Massachusetts, which ban many common repeating rifles and shotguns, and limit magazine capacity to only 10 rounds. (emphasis mine)

In the 1941 case Watson v. Stone, the Florida Supreme Court construed the statute narrowly. The court held that the statute didn’t apply to carrying in an automobile. Concurring, Justice Buford explained the racial background:

“I know something of the history of this legislation. The original Act of 1893 was passed when there was a great influx of negro laborers in this State drawn here for the purpose of working in turpentine and lumber camps. The same condition existed when the Act was amended in 1901 and the Act was passed for the purpose of disarming the negro laborers. … The statute was never intended to be applied to the white population and in practice has never been so applied. (emphasis mine) … [T]here has never been, within my knowledge, any effort to enforce the provisions of this statute as to white people, because it has been generally conceded to be in contravention of the Constitution and nonenforceable if contested.”

This law was only repealed in 1987 when Florida adopted shall-issue carry permits.

The gun control lobby is still trying to keep “repeating arms” out of the hands of blacks – and whites and Asians and Latinos and Native Americans. Indeed, Joe Biden, he of the double-barrel shotgun, vows to do away with “repeating arms” on his campaign website. He may call them by a different name but they are still repeating arms.