Gun Rights Groups would Do Well to Legally Champion Black Gun Owner

So for standing her ground she will serve two years for Weapons – Felony Firearms/ Assault with Dangerous Weapon (Felonious Assault)? (Michigan Department of Corrections)

U.S.A. – -( “A pregnant black woman is in prison for defending herself. Mainstream gun groups are silent,” Vox reported Friday. “She had a concealed carry permit. The gun wasn't even loaded. Now she’s facing two years in prison.”

Reason had reported on this a few days earlier, explaining:

“Siwatu-Salama Ra is a 26-year-old black mother who watched in horror as an angry assailant—a neighbor with whom Ra had a dispute—deliberately crashed her vehicle into Ra's car while Ra's two-year-old daughter was playing inside. Ra removed her unloaded, legally purchased handgun from the glove box and brandished it, scaring the neighbor off.”

One of Jeff Cooper’s essential rules is all guns are always loaded, and leaving one unattended in the glove box invites trouble and tragedy. And using a gun believed to be unloaded may work as a bluff on occasion, but once the potential for a deadly force response has been introduced into a situation, the wielder had better pray that bluff isn’t called.

Fortunately, neither of those possibilities factored into Ra’s current woes.  But what she is facing is nonetheless unjust and unacceptable, especially in light of Michigan's “stand your ground” law, and established gun owner rights groups ought to involve themselves in appeals. Which brings us to why Vox is really posting this article.

“Making matters worse, while Black Lives Matter and other left-leaning civil rights organizations have been publicizing Ra’s case and others like it, mainstream pro-gun groups, including the National Rifle Association, have been dispiritingly quiet about the incident,” Vox couldn't resist pointing out.

Everybody sees what they’re doing here, right?

They don’t give a damn about the right to keep and bear arms, nor are they championing it to fellow”progressives” as the most egalitarian power-sharing arrangement yet devised. Vox has long been a leading cheerleader for a state monopoly of violence, with their resident Pajama Boy having called on Barack Obama to to “unilaterally ban all Americans from purchasing guns.” They’re just doing this to try and embarrass NRA, and to smear the Association and its members as racists who don’t care about the plight of non-whites.

In fact, it’s not “conservatives” doing their utmost to disarm urban minorities (and extend it to everyone in Everytown) – it’s “progressives” and their party of choice, the Democrats.  Michael Bloomberg went so far as to actually propose race-based gun restrictions – something Vox will never tell its readers about because it doesn’t help with the narrative they’re pushing.

That said, this seems the kind of civil and natural rights abuse stories NRA should champion, especially noting they have their own media group and they’ve made inroads and outreaches with spokesmen like Colion Noir. Add to that the case of Shaneen Allen, resolved “with the aid of untold numbers of Second Amendment supporters who ensured that these struggles did not go unnoticed.”

Gun owners and the groups they belong to should help, not because anti-gun leftists (who will always hate them) are playing “Gotcha!” but because it’s the right thing to do.

It’s a situation rich in opportunities, both to advance rights and to challenge minorities to consider why so many give kneejerk support to politicians who deny their rights and punish those who claim them.

About David Codrea:David Codrea

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.

In addition to being a field editor/columnist at GUNS Magazine and associate editor for Oath Keepers, he blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

  • 27 thoughts on “Gun Rights Groups would Do Well to Legally Champion Black Gun Owner

    1. Even when the prosecution knows the police don’t and didn’t follow the Law correctly when pursuing a victimless crime, the prosecution will still enforce the law by manipulating the information to get a conviction.

      There truly is no justice in the criminal justice system, only numbers and more wins then losses, rather than just cases and unjust cases which are supposed to secure society and the people in it.

      Interestingly enough, if the criminal justice system continues to pursue and prosecute citizens who go above the minimum to abide by the Law in firearm related convictions, there won’t be a need to repeal the 2nd Amendment.

      Citizens will be disenfranchised, ostracized, and fearful of owning or possessing a firearm, so much so that the right to self-defense with a firearm will become obsolete.

      Think about it, if liberal and anti-gun advocates can relate firearms ownership to criminal convictions, based off of the simplest errors or minor discrepancies, they will inevitably create the psychological reality that gun ownership is not worth the hassle.

      And if you have citizens fearful of being persecuted for firearms ownership, the anti-gun group for fear of mass shootings, another group for feeling the 2nd Amendment is out of date, and any other reason to discourage firearm ownership, eventually there won’t be enough pro-gun advocates, and your right to firearms in any facet will be void by the majority.

      Maybe I’m paranoid, but historically it’s been shown that when you give an inch, they take a mile, and when you lose ground in firearms rights, you lose them forever. Just look at HB’s 4003, 4416, and 4970, all “dead” under Senator Meekhoff.

      And given the fact that concealed carry was the norm before, during, after the 2nd Amendment was written and ratified, it goes to show that the past 200 years more miles and more miles have been lost and taken.

    2. David,

      I would really have enjoyed reading the actual core particulars, pertaining to not only the event, but the crime as it was referred to by the Court.

      Specifically I mean the origin of the charges according to the PD, and the specifics language, from the da.

      On the surface, it looks like this woman really does need some support. However, a lot more specifics are necessary prior to my being able to support her position.

      Thank you David.

      Cheers from Wyoming

    3. FYI Colion Noir has this on his FB page now. I sent PM to the NRA FB page. Call it FB advocacy if you will, but a good portion of the world is on FB/Twitter, etc…

    4. Same thing happened to me when my wife and 2 children and i were attacked by a baseball bat wielding attacker…forced to draw my legally owned gun i was the only one arrested and was brought up on felony assault and everything else the cops could dream the end after going broke hiring the most expensive lawyer in town it got bargained down to continued without finding which they wont remove from my record despite prior to this never having even got a parking ticket…the judge said its due to the severity of the crime it cant be expunged…..what?defending your family from a known repeat criminal with a bat???? Massachusetts can go to hell…i moved

      1. Mass. is an excrement pit from the top of the heap to the civil servants who carry out the unconstitutional will of their handlers. Glad you got out. I was in the same situation in a Constitutional state and they dropped the charges at the DA level (but honestly you should never be charged for defending your life and family from a deadly threat) : you have my sympathy and regards.

      2. “the judge said its due to the severity of the crime it cant be expunged”

        Much worse than, say, driving drunk off a bridge and drowning an intern.

    5. Don’t give a dam about color, it is your choice to own a weapon or not. I support any and all American citizens right to carry, own, firearms and to USE in self defense. No exceptions, no excuses

    6. Why go through the trouble and expense of fighting it in court. Her neighbor can be convinced to change his testimony. The prosecutors and officers involved all have vulnerabilities that can be exploited. Public officials who commit wrongs by blindly adhering to a law that is unjustly applied to a given situation deserve nothing less. The “just doing their job” defense is not a defense. Violating the Constitution has no defense.

    7. Her case was barely covered by any normal news organization I saw one story on MSN, essentially covering vox’s story, and I don’t consider vox a ligitimate site, and Detroit Free, another rag. The rest of the sites were all blogs, third-rate leftist rags, etc.

      The few facts on the case made it questionable that it was self-defense, and she was sentenced under a mandatory sentencing law for brandishing, which is how even she described it, though not in those words. She even had left her firearm unattended in her vehicle with her two year old. I don’t blame any rights group for not getting involved in that.

    8. Ok, here are some more facts: “The problem is, Harvey filed her report first. And in Detroit, the first person to file a report gets to become the “victim” in a legal dispute. According to the Detroit Metro Times:

      During the trial, a DPD detective testified that the department considers the person who arrives at the police station first to be the victim, lawyers say. Thus, detectives were not allowed to speak to Ra directly.
      That wasn’t the only problem during Ra’s trial. First and foremost, the jury — which, according to one of Ra’s attorneys, Victoria Burton-Harris, was “very diverse” — wasn’t informed that the gun charges carried a mandatory prison sentence of two years. The trial was held with a snowstorm looming, which Burton-Harris told the Metro Times led to the jury making too quick of a decision on a verdict — one that found that Ra was guilty of assaulting Harvey but was acting in self-defense toward Harvey’s daughter (who was in the passenger seat and, notably, not driving the car.)

      And according to questions sent to the judge during deliberations, the jury was very focused on why Ra’s gun was in her car, where her daughter was playing — an issue that wasn’t part of the case presented to them.”
      There is so much trial level stench that perhaps the answer is a “Go Fund Me” account and an appellate attorney.

      1. ?? What? If you refer to SB1212 (Constitutional Carry)… first, it has not yet been signed into law by Governor Fallin, and second, if signed it will not affect the anti-brandishing law in any way.

        1. I am referring to the law passed last year, I believe, that made displaying a firearm without firing a shot, if you felt threatened, legal. Your turn.

    9. Did this happen in Flint? Brandishing a weapon on your own property? I do this every other week? Maybe in the Wal Mart
      or gas station parking lot. Brandishing is a real crime, please.

    10. Ra did not call the police FIRST after another person crashed a car into her car with Ra’s CHILD inside. WHY? Banishing an unloaded gun is a double bad idea. She is our political enemy on numerous other fronts. I want some answers before going to battle for her.

      1. WHY did not Ra call the coppers first? Simple.. her DAUGHTER was inside the car that had been crashed into (assault with a deadly weapon, the driver of that other car was running back and forth as if she intended to crash into the car again…. and again… who KNOWS how badly hurt that little girl could have been?) My guess is being a good Mama, Ra’s FIRST order of business was to assure the safety of her daughter and calm her down after the traumatic experience of being in a car wreck.
        On what basis do you assert she is our “political enemy”? Please be very specific. She holds to some value or idea you dislike? If that’s enough to leave her to the fate imposed by tyrannical government, perhaps we could find some grounds for disqualifying YOU from your God-given right to arms?

        Remember ever hearing of the Boston Massacre, back about 1773 or so? Nine British Regular sodliers were on trial for murder for firing into a crowd and killing some of them (8, if memory serves) A well known patriot of Boston, who happened to be a lawyer, took up the defense, voluntarily, for those Brit soldiers accused of murder. Many railed against him for this action, and many of Boston turned against him as a traitor to the cause of liberty and all those “proper” things. His response?
        If those soliders cannot get a fair trial and legal representation to aid in their defense, WHO CAN????? The accused were acquitted.. seems the riotous crowd had been physically threatening, closing in upon, and assaulting those soliders. The jury determined they had fired in fear for their lives. The name of that attorney? John Adams. And THAT TRIAL and incident is most likely the REASON the right to a trial by a jury of one’s peers, and the right to legal counsel in any matter at law, the right to examine witnesses agaisnt you, and to rpesent your own witnesses, wwere all written into the Constitituion.

        Now I ask you.. were those soldiers not representative of “our political enemy” King George Three? Of COURSE they were. Don’t ever let one’s idealogy decide whether justice is due someone.
        This woman has NOT seen justice. Most of the reasons for this have been pointed out above.

        1. Well Said! You have addressed the situation in a nutshell and as gun owners we should support her, even if she MAY hold some opinions or beliefs that we disagree with. By defending her rights, we are defending our own and maybe even those who will not see the light of freedom for many years in the future. We should not be in the situation of being accused of racism because we ignored a gun rights case due to the race or political beliefs of the person involved. Vox may have done the gun rights organizations a favor by publicizing the case to embarrass us. But in some ways their accusations may be true, but by trying to embarrass us they have given the case publicity that it needed to bring it to the notice of the ordinary person on the street, the very advocates she needs. Thank you VOX! Now ladies and gentlemen let us get busy and see what can be done.

      2. It could simply be a matter of which one got to their phone first. I am wondering why, after discovering that the neighbor had deliberately used her vehicle as a battering ram against another vehicle containing a child, a fact apparently not in dispute, the police did not immediately arrest the neighbor for assault with a deadly weapon, regardless of the charges against Ra. Something really is fishy about this story…

    11. The only date I see is 03/02/2018 so I expect that nobody knows about this at the NRA or SAF. Kansas had to amend the state law on self-defense to make successful brandishing part of lawful self-defense and not an assault. Some courts had interpreted the law such that if you didn’t actual shoot the attacker you really weren’t in danger.
      It is very possible the a public defender doesn’t know enough to argue a “gun case” when the defendant is an honest person and innocent.
      Important rules are get a RO when there is a neighbor dispute to establish facts and justification. Call the police/ 911, ASAP when there is a car assault. If the neighbor hits your car ONCE brandishing a gun is only justified if they are getting ready to do it again and the gun stopped the aggravated assault on the person/child in the car.
      Leaving a 2 year old alone in a car to play could be sen as parental child endangerment. Lacking burned rubber to show the car collision was intentional a verified history and the restraining order shows some proof.

      1. Read this:

        NRA-ILA can provide general advice regarding laws and regulations affecting gun owners, however; our attorneys are prohibited by the ethical restraints of their bar license(s) from providing specific legal advice. Our attorneys are also prohibited from discussing legal issues with individuals already represented by counsel, but may assist counsel with research and advice. You may contact the Office of Legislative Counsel at (703) 267-1161 or via email at [email protected], however; if you have a question about your case and are represented by counsel, please refrain from contacting us directly and instead refer your counsel to this office.

    Leave a Comment 27 Comments