An Open Letter to Professor Steven P. Grossman

TO: Steven P. Grossman (sgrossman@ubalt.edu)
CC: newstips@baltimoresun.com, OGPA@ubalt.edu
SUBJECT: An Open Letter to Professor Steven P. Grossman

Sir,

Regarding your opinion column:

The right to bear arms is not absolute
https://www.baltimoresun.com/opinion/op-ed/bs-ed-op-0217-second-amendment-right-to-bear-arms-20200217-wjekvvhasvfntmutnyaospgrmq-story.html

You should be ashamed of yourself. Deliberate false equivalence in a professor should be grounds for a university investigation of whether your anti-rights position has colored your actions as dean.

Do you think it is permissible to yell “fire” in a crowded movie theater in order to create a panic? How about whether it is legal to speak to a crowd and tell them to go out and shoot the first police officer they see, or homeless person or teacher?
[…]
While virtually everyone accepts such a common sense limitation on the First Amendment, there are those who argue that anyone who proposes limitations on the possession of guns is an opponent of the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms.

I see what you did there. When an ignorant layman does that, I’m willing to consider the possibility that it is attributable to mere… ignorance. When a law professor equates MISUSE/ABUSE of a right to simple, lawful, and harmless exercise of right, I know it’s purely malicious.

You pretend that lying and threatening are the First Amendment equivalents of the Second Amendment right to POSSESS a tool.

Before you wrote that despicable screed did you fill out a federal form and ask permission from the government to buy the computer on which you composed the column? Did you undergo a prior restraint background to prove your innocence before even obtaining the inanimate tool you used to exercise your First Amendment right to voice that opinion? Did you use a 1980s Intel 80286 computer limited to 768K RAM, because only the military needs a high speed, high capacity Pentium with 8 GB?

Did you get a license to possess your mouth, just in case you might lie to a student — or Baltimore Sun readers? Did you undergo a background check to possess your typing fingers?

Do University of Baltimore School of Law students undergo background checks before purchasing textbooks, or writing class papers?

Yes; threats, lies, incitement to violence are abuses of free speech rights, and we punish people for that. Likewise, assault and murder using firearms are abuses of the right to keep and bear arms. As a law professor I would expect you to know that those are also unlawful and we punish those offenders.

Buying and possessing a firearm differs not from buying and possessing a computer, telephone, megaphone, pen, or pencil. The ABUSE that must be controlled is not the same thing as possessing a tool with the potential to be abused.

Reasonable laws limiting the possession and sale of certain guns are clearly not violative of the Second Amendment. Such laws include but are not limited to those banning weapons, such as the AR-15 designed for combat…

If you believe that modern AR-pattern semiautomatic rifles were designed as military weapons (despite the fact that no nation on the planet generally issues semiautomatic rifles to its regular troops), then how do you square banning them with the precedent of U.S. vs. Miller, 1939, in which the Supreme Court found that short-barrel shotguns could be regulated because they had not been shown to be a weapon used by the military? The Court specifically said that the Second Amendment does protect the possession of military arms. An honest law professor would know and admit that.

Your disdain for basic, constitutionally protected human rights disgusts me.

Sincerely,

Carl “Bear” Bussjaeger

Speaker “Alzheimers” Pelosi: Brazen Criminal

Last night, Speaker of the House Pelosi indulged in a bit of petty political grandstanding. She methodically ripped up the State of the Union report which Trump had handed her prior to his address.

 

Most folks seem to see this as either dissing the Prez, or standing up to the Orangeman Bad, depending largely on party affiliation. I see it as a violation of 44 U.S. Code § 3106. Unlawful removal, destruction of records.

A lot of people forget that the SOTU address isn’t the real Constitutionally-required SOTU report. It’s just a speech. Presidents didn’t even do the speech until Woodrow Wilson decided it would be a great PR move. The formal report is the document Trump handed her.

Some may wish to argue that the papers were merely a transcript of the speech and not the report. But that was still a formal document presented to Congress by the President of the United States, a public record. She destroyed it. That’s a crime.

Best case for Pelosi is that she’s too far gone mentally to understand that she’s not supposed to destroy records. In that case, she needs to be removed from office for mental incompetence.

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No, the VA Dems did not file a bill to criminalize criticism of politicians

That story will not die. It just keeps popping up like a whack-a-mole.

VA Legislators Introduce Anti-Free Speech Bill to Criminalize Online Criticism of Government Officials
After Virginia’s recent anti-second amendment legislation was successfully passed, the state legislature is now going after the first amendment. Virginia House Bill No. 1627 was introduced on January 16 which could effectively make it illegal to criticize government officials anywhere in the state.

The bill everyone refers to is HB 1627. Let’s see what the relevant portion says.

§ 18.2-152.7:1. Harassment by computer; penalty.

If any person, with the intent to coerce, intimidate, or harass any person, shall use a computer or computer network to communicate obscene, vulgar, profane, lewd, lascivious, or indecent language, or make any suggestion or proposal of an obscene nature, or threaten any illegal or immoral act, he shall be is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. A violation of this section may be prosecuted in the jurisdiction in which the communication was made or received or in the City of Richmond if the person subjected to the act is one of the following officials or employees of the Commonwealth: the Governor, Governor-elect, Lieutenant Governor, Lieutenant Governor-elect, Attorney General, or Attorney General-elect, a member or employee of the General Assembly, a justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia, or a judge of the Court of Appeals of Virginia.

The strike-out is language removed from existing law and the bold is language added. And what is that existing law? Code of Virginia § 18.2-152.7:1. Which currently reads:

If any person, with the intent to coerce, intimidate, or harass any person, shall use a computer or computer network to communicate obscene, vulgar, profane, lewd, lascivious, or indecent language, or make any suggestion or proposal of an obscene nature, or threaten any illegal or immoral act, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

See? “coerce, intimidate, or harass” is already there. HB 1627 simply adds court venue to § 18.2-152.7:1. Currently, if someone should “coerce, intimidate, or harass” someone using a computer, the trial would be held where the crime occurred; at the harasser’s location or the victim’s.

This bill merely states that if the victim of actual coercion, intimidation, or harassment — not just First Amendment protected criticism; it would have to rise to a criminal level — is the governor or other specified government officials, the trial can be held in Richmond, instead of the harasser’s or victim’s locale.

That’s it. Chill out. Those idiot Dems are actually infringing obliterating  enough rights for real to get distracted by this.

If anyone has a valid analysis otherwise, let me know. If I agree, I’ll acknowledge that.

ETA: And should anyone care to whine about the lack of definitions for “coerce, intimidate, or harass,” guess what.

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Morphing VCDL’s Lobby Day for Fun and Profit

I’ve noticed a trend in “news” reporting in the past few days, and this morning it was particularly obvious. It really hit me when I read one piece. Darned if I remember where it was, so… no link. But hit any mainstream media source and you’ll see the same general thing.

It was a report about the “protest” in Virginia on Monday. All about how “The Base” would be there, the “ultra-violent” Unite the Right, militias, white supremicists, the expected levels of violence, and so on and so forth. You had to go down ten or twelve paragraphs before you got any mention that this is an annual Lobby Day sponsored by Virginia Citizens Defense League. At that, it didn’t even say a word about what VCDL is lobbying for.

The media are doing their damnedest to ensure that an event — which has been peaceful, nonviolent, even friendly petitioning of government for 18 years — is as bloodily click-worthy as they can make it this year.

The stories — can’t call it news, because it’s becoming pure speculative fiction — that bother mentioning the actual topic portray it as right-wing gun nuts threatening death and destruction in opposition to a few reasonable crime fighting bills.

Take a look at the bills filed in the Virginia Assembly, and show me a single one that addresses actual crimes committed with firearms.

Illegal trafficking? No. Not there.

Enhanced penalties for criminal use of a firearm? No.

A task force dedicated to recovering stolen firearms? No.

How about a ban on the class of firearms most used in crime? Nope, they’re trying to ban the firearms least used in crime, but more commonly used defensively.

If you bother looking, you will find bills easing bail, restoring more felon rights, and reducing penalties for crimes.

You’ll find bills making it tougher to defend themselves against the criminals the delegates, senators and governor are enabling. Bill that make it harder for poor people to get defensive tools, and force them to choose between daddy having protection going to work on midshift or mommy protecting the kids at home.

But you won’t see that at any of the mainstream fictional-BS networks. Nothing about VCDL trying to peacefully protect everyone‘s rights, rural or urban, Democrat or Republican, rich or poor. All you’ll see is “nasty evil Jew-hating crackers are coming to kill the righteous blacks and Democrats.”

I guess civil war — or more likely Hunting Season is good for ratings.

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Henry Axe .410 explained

I’ve been puzzling over the the Henry Axe .410, which looks remarkably like a short-barrel shotgun but isn’t. I’ve been trying to figure out how it isn’t an NFA SBS or AOW.

Thanks to a very patient customer service rep for Henry Repeating Arms, I got enough data to figure it out (it would have been quicker if they simply sent me a copy of the determination letter).

Basically, they squeezed past the NFA restrictions the same way that Mossberg did with their Shockwave.

26 U.S. Code § 5845(e) Any Other Weapon:

  • any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the person from which a shot can be discharged through the energy of an explosive,
  • a pistol or revolver having a barrel with a smooth bore designed or redesigned to fire a fixed shotgun shell

That would seem to apply to the Axe .410. But then, it would seem to apply to the Shockwave as well. As we can see from Mossberg’s determination letter, the ATF decided the concealability factor applied.

is a “firearm” subject to GCA provisions; however, it is not a “firearm” as defined by the NFA. Please note that if the subject firearm is concealed on a person, the classification with regard to the NFA may change.

That is, with an overall length just over 26 inches — note that the Axe .410 is also over 26 inches — it wasn’t concealable, therefore the NFA does not apply. But if they catch someone tucking one under a coat…

This is another example of just how arbitrary the ATF can be. In these cases, “arbitrary” worked in favor of firearm manufacturers and owners. I hope Henry includes a copy of their determination letter with every Axe.

I also hope the ATF doesn’t play the same reclassification game that they did with the Reformation. All they have to do is decide this is concealable after all, and it magically becomes an AOW.

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An Interesting Trend

“Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action”

Ian Fleming

On March 26, 2019, bump-fire stocks magically became machineguns, without any enabling legislation. And so sorry; due to the Firearm Owners “Protection” act of 1986, you can’t register a machinegun manufactured after May of ’86.

On December 16, 2019, Pennsylvania Asshole General Josh Shapiro issued a legal opinion redefining 80% frame/receiver kits (and anything else that you can turn into a firearm with $65,000 and 13 hours of work… that is, everything) to be firearms, without bothering with legislation. PA State Police (PSP) Commissioner Colonel Robert Evanchick immediately declared background checks would have to be conducted on 80% frame/receiver sales (naturally) but they don’t have a process for that yet. So no one can sell them in PA, until they get around to dreaming up a process.

On December 19, 2019, the ATF invented a new class of firearms without any basis in statutory law: the non-NFA GCA Short-Barreled Shotgun. Now no one can sell the Franklin Amory Reformation… until the ATF eventually gets around to creating the necessary forms.

For those who might have — somehow — retained some doubts about the matter, enemy action is confirmed. Expect to see a lot more of these bureaucratic shadow-bans.

Thanks, Vichy NRA.

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