Tag Archives | Gun Control

The Black Panthers And The Right To Bear Arms

Big Man Elbert Howard Black Panther Party founding member oakland 1968The founding fathers of the modern “gun rights” movement in America was…the Black Panthers ?? Yes, or so the Atlantic argues in an interesting piece on the twisted, tangled history of firearm ownership in America:

The Ku Klux Klan, Ronald Reagan, and, for most of its history, the NRA all worked to control guns. The true pioneers of the modern pro-gun movement? The Black Panthers. In the battle over gun rights in America, both sides have distorted history and the law, and there’s no resolution in sight.

It was May 2, 1967, and the Black Panthers’ invasion of the California statehouse launched the modern gun-rights movement. On the west lawn of the state capitol in Sacramento 30 young black men and women [arrived] carrying .357 Magnums, 12-gauge shotguns, and .45-caliber pistols. The 24 men and six women climbed the capitol steps, and one man, Bobby Seale, began to read from a prepared statement.

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Millions Of ‘Mentally Ill’ People Missing From National Gun Check System

Photo: Lukáš Lahoda (CC)

Photo: Lukáš Lahoda (CC)

Just in case a convicted felon can’t get a gun on the black market, he may have a chance to obtain it legally. Raw Story reports:

The issue of gun control leapt back into the national discourse in the wake of January’s Tucson massacre.

But one of the most shocking gaps in the effort to prevent people prohibited by law from purchasing firearms continues to fly beneath the radar. Records of at least two million dangerously mentally ill individuals whose names should already be in the nation’s criminal background check system remain missing.

Tens of thousands of people’s records that would fall into other legally disqualifying categories in the background check system are also missing, with convicted felons high on the list. Yet Raw Story confirmed with experts on gun control that records of those whose mental illness has been legally determined to be a danger to themselves or others far outnumber the unreported information of individuals in other prohibiting categories.

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Nebraska Senator’s Bill Would Allow Teachers To Carry Guns

Seal of NebraskaThe Lincoln Journal Star reports:

On the heels of the fatal shooting of an Omaha-area school administrator by a despondent student, Sen. Mark Christensen of Imperial introduced a bill Tuesday to allow teachers, administrators and school security guards to carry concealed guns.

The bill (LB516) would allow local school boards to choose by a two-thirds vote whether to allow such weapons on their property. The bill also applies to colleges and universities.

Christensen said he introduced his bill in response to the Jan. 5 shooting at Millard South High School, where 17-year-old student Robert Butler Jr. shot Assistant Principal Vicki Kaspar and then shot Principal Curtis Case. Kaspar had suspended Butler from the school earlier that morning. She died of her injury; Curtis has been released from the hospital.

Police found Butler about 45 minutes after the shooting in a parking lot about a mile from the school, dead from a self-inflicted gunshot…

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Schumer Pushes For Military To Report Applicants’ Drug Use to Prevent Gun Purchases

Charles Schumer

Charles Schumer

Thanks to Chris W. for sending this along, commenting, “Admit you’ve used illegal drugs? You may be disqualified if Senator Chuck Schumer has his way” (reported by Fox News):

If someone admits to a federal official that he’s used illegal drugs, that information should be sent to the FBI so that person can be disqualified from purchasing a gun, Sen. Chuck Schumer said Sunday.

Noting that the alleged shooter in the Tucson massacre had admitted to military recruiters that he had used drugs on several occasions, Schumer said he is proposing to the Justice Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that the military be required to notify federal officials about such admissions. The New York Democrat said such a process does not require new legislation.

Jared Lee Loughner is charged with five federal counts in the killing of a federal judge and shooting of Arizona Rep.

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Republican Peter King To Introduce Legislation Banning Firearms Within 1,000 Feet Of A Government Official

71124705CS006_NYC_Police_CoWill it soon be a crime to be armed in the presence of a government official? A strict new gun-control measure is slated to be introduced in Congress by a surprising proponent, Huffington Post writes:

Rep. Peter King, a Republican from New York, is planning to introduce legislation that would make it illegal to bring a gun within 1,000 feet of a government official, according to a person familiar with the congressman’s intentions.

King is chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. The proposed law follows the Saturday shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and a federal judge that left six dead, including the judge, and 14 wounded.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, one of the nation’s most outspoken gun-control advocates, is backing King’s measure and is expected to put the weight of his pro-gun-control organization behind it.

It is already illegal in the U.S. to carry a gun within 1,000 feet of a school.

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Make My Day Pastor: Bring Your Gun Into Church in Louisiana

Make My Day PastorThou Shall Not Kill. Unless it’s Time for Worship. The Times-Picayune reports:

Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed into law one of the more controversial bills from the recent legislative session, one allowing guns to be carried into houses of worship.

Jindal’s office said Tuesday the governor acted on the bill in the past few days after receiving it June 20.

Including the “gun-in-church” bill, House Bill 1272 by Rep. Henry Burns, R-Haughton, Jindal has signed into law 940 of the 1,067 bills the Legislature sent him, vetoed 12, and used his pen to line-item spending measures in four different budget bills.

Burns’ bill would authorize persons who qualified to carry concealed weapons having passed the training and background checks to bring them to churches, mosques, synagogues or other houses of worship as part of a security force.

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Supreme Court Extends Handgun Rights

Handguns. Photo: Joshuashearn (CC)

Handguns. Photo: Joshuashearn (CC)

What do you think – was the Supreme Court right to uphold U.S. citizens’ right to carry handguns, even in major cities? I can appreciate both sides of the argument, but as a New York City resident I’d prefer not to see handguns in an urban environment. David G. Savage reports for the Los Angeles Times:

The Supreme Court reversed a ruling upholding Chicago’s ban on handguns Monday and extended the reach of the 2nd Amendment as a nationwide protection against laws that infringe on the “right to keep and bear arms.”

The 5-4 decision appears to void the 1982 ordinance, one of the nation’s strictest, which barred city residents from having handguns for their own use, even at home.

The ruling has both local and national implications.

Two years ago, the high court ruled in a case from Washington, D.C., that the 2nd Amendment protects the rights of individuals to have a gun for self-defense.

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U.S. Supreme Court Set To Extend Gun Rights

Handguns. Photo: Joshuashearn (CC)

Handguns. Photo: Joshuashearn (CC)

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday in a landmark gun rights case that could apply the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms to both cities and states. Warren Richey reports for the Christian Science Monitor:

The US Supreme Court appears to be on verge of extending the constitutional protection of the Second Amendment’s right to keep and bear arms to every jurisdiction in the nation.

During an hour-long oral argument at the high court on Tuesday, several justices exhibited a willingness to enforce their landmark 2008 gun-rights decision at the state and local level.

If they do so, the decision may doom not only the Chicago handgun ban at the center of Tuesday’s case, but other handgun bans and some of the toughest state and local gun-control laws in the country.

The only remaining question in McDonald v. Chicago was which constitutional mechanism the majority justices might use to apply the 2008 holding to state and local governments.

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