Time To Help Out One Of Our Own

If you follow gun rights litigation the name Gray Peterson might ring a bell.

Gray is the plaintiff in Peterson v. Garcia (formerly known as Peterson v. LaCabe and Peterson v. Martinez) which challenges the state of Colorado’s concealed handgun law as specifically applied to the City and County of Denver. A Washington State resident, Gray sought a Colorado CHL as that state did not recognize either his Washington permit or his non-resident permit.

In February, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals denied Gray’s appeal. They have also denied his request for an en banc rehearing of the case.

Gray put it on the line to challenge Colorado’s refusal to recognize non-resident CCW permits. Now he needs our help and that help has nothing to do with guns or gun rights.

Gray’s father Dave Wilson is suffering a loss of cognitive function due to an unknown and undiagnosed illness. Gray is his next of kin and needs to raise $10,000 to pay for a cash-only diagnosis.

David Wilson, age 55, is the father of one (me). About 2 years ago (and without my knowledge) , he started losing cognitive function due to an unknown condition which is currently un-diagnosed due to his refusal to get treatment on prompting of his mother, and only somewhat with his ex-wife (my mother).

As David’s only son, I am his next of kin under Florida law and when he is potentially incapacitated, it falls on me to get him treatment, placing him under guardianship through the court system if necessary. Unfortunately, as he’s been jobless due to his loss of cognitive functions which have been increasing as time goes on (no unemployment, no social security as he’s too young)…

Why 10K? Going to cash-only diagnostic route will be quite expensive, plus travel expenses, transport expenses, my personal income loss in dealing with this. 10K seems like the minimum the safe-bet/assumption, and I don’t want to run out before we start dealing with more obscure issues. I also am OK with getting more than that to deal with further unexpected expense (attempting to be conservative here).

I love my father very much, which is why I’m putting this out there, to help save him from cognitive deficiency (if acute or due to mental health) or if it cannot be saved from (if chronic due to physical health), making sure he is set up to live with me, or somewhere geared to his condition nearby me.

This kind of hits home for me. My mother spent the last 4 1/2 years of her life in a nursing home with organic brain syndrome or dementia. While she had excellent health insurance as a retired school teacher, that didn’t cover long-term care expenses. I was fortunate that she had a good pension and had been a saver so I didn’t run out of money for her care. The other reason this hits home is that I’m a year older than Gray’s dad. Hearing about something like this hitting someone younger than you makes you look in the mirror and say there but for the grace of God go I.

I have sent Gray a donation and would encourage you to make one if you can. He has set up a page to handle the donations and it can be found here. So far, donations total $650 so there is a long way to go. Please be as generous as you can afford to be.

Why Does The Brady Campaign Want To Keep Gays Defenseless?

The oral arguments before the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in the case Peterson v. Garcia et al are being held this afternoon in Denver. The case involves the attempt by Gray Peterson to obtain a concealed carry permit in Colorado as that state does not recognize his Washington State permit. For those that are unaware of Mr. Peterson and this case, he is gay and is a strong advocate of Second Amendment rights.

While the primary oral arguments will be made by John Monroe, attorney for Mr. Peterson, and the Colorado Attorney General’s Office, the Court of Appeals has allowed extra time for oral arguments by certain amici (friends of the court) in this case. Alan Gura will be representing the Second Amendment Foundation and a whole host of groups which include among others Illinois Carry, ISRA, and CalGuns. The NRA Civil Rights Defense Fund will be represented by Matt Bower of the NRA and the Brady Campaign will be represented by Jonathan Lowy.

As might be expected from the gun prohibitionists, they are portraying this as a battle between the good Brady Campaign and the evil NRA to prevent “guns in the streets.” From their press release:

Attorneys for the Brady Center and the NRA (National Rifle Association) will face off in a first-in-the-nation case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver, Colorado Monday, March 19. The case, Peterson v. Garcia, will decide whether the Constitution allows Colorado to protect public safety by continuing its policy of regulating who can carry loaded and concealable guns in public.

Senior Judge Walker D. Miller of the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado dismissed the original case on March 8, 2011.The gun lobby then appealed to the 10th Circuit.

The Brady Center filed an amicus brief on July 19, 2011, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, urging dismissal of the appeal. The Brady Center’s brief highlights the severe danger posed by concealed weapons, with studies showing that the carrying of guns in public does not make one safer, but instead increases the risks of death and injury. Brady believes that communities should be able to decide who can carry loaded guns on their streets, and in their parks and playgrounds.

Dangerous legislation has been introduced in Congress to force states like Colorado to honor concealed weapon licenses granted by other states, even by states with virtually no standards for concealed carry, and that allow carrying by people with violent pasts.

Notice that there is no mention in this release – and I presume none in their brief – that this case is really about a gay man wishing to protect himself from predators. I’d like to think that at least some of the the Brady Campaign’s donors might be appalled – and rightfully so – if they knew this.