U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)- A Duke University law professor may have unintentionally explained to a writer at Foreign Policy.com why Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was able to push through new gun control measures following the deadly Nova Scotia shooting spree, when such arbitrary actions would never be permitted in the United States.
Buried deep in a story that was perhaps incorrectly headlined “How Canada Got Tough on Guns” are a couple of paragraphs quoting Prof. Joseph Blocher, who “studies gun rights and regulation.” As he explained to writer Jillian Kestler-D’Amours, the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear arms “as a factor for why the gun debate in Canada can appear so different. In Canada, there is no constitutional right to own guns.”
It’s not that Canada “got rough on guns,” but that Trudeau got tough on gun owners; law abiding Canadian citizens who neither committed the crime nor endorsed it. But the story really does not focus on that, only on the perception that some guns, at least, including so-called “assault weapons” and handguns, are not considered necessary in Canada.
The 2008 Heller ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court put that discussion off the table when it identified the handgun as the most common firearm used for personal and home protection. Handguns are in common use and therefore, according to Heller, they’re protected by the Second Amendment.
Twelve years ago, when the gun prohibition lobby contended almost around the clock to any news willing to listen that the Second Amendment did not protect an individual right, the late Justice Antonin Scalia corrected the record. Now anti-gunners argue the amendment does not protect “assault rifles” or carrying guns outside the home, and there are ten cases pending before the high court that—if one or more is accepted for review during the next term—could correct gun grabbers again.
WICZ News picked up a report from CNN’s Jamie Ehrlich that discusses how these cases, none of which were accepted for review this week so they go back on the list for consideration during the court’s next conference, could change the legal landscape anew. It’s been ten years since the Court accepted a Second Amendment case, so the justices are overdue.
By no small coincidence, the CNN story also quotes someone from Duke, Jacob Charles, executive director for the university’s Center for Firearms Law. Charles acknowledges the court composition has changed since Heller and the 2010 McDonald ruling, “but that is no guarantee the court will make a sweeping ruling the way some conservatives hope,” the story says.
Regardless of one’s philosophical position on the Second Amendment, both reports put the right to keep and bear arms squarely in the spotlight, a situation that could never happen north of the border, where the amendment doesn’t exist.
The Foreign Policy.com story mistakenly observes that “some 30,000” U.S. citizens are “dying from gun violence every year,” which mischaracterizes the problem considerably. Fully two-thirds of those fatalities are from suicide, not homicide, and gun rights advocates in the U.S. have insisted for years that the two categories should not be mixed together. One is the result of a crime, the other an act of emotional desperation, and combining the numbers only makes for a more dramatic and alarming total, which plays well with the gun control agenda, but rather fast and loose with actual fact.
As AmmoLand’s David Codrea noted in his recent article about the Canada situation, gun control extremists in that country have essentially admitted that disarmament is the ultimate goal.
Meanwhile, gun control will no doubt be a central issue in the upcoming presidential campaign, if it ever really gets underway amid the coronavirus pandemic panic. There are several battles on that front.
In Florida, National Rifle Association lobbyist Marion Hammer—the NRA’s first female president nearly 25 years ago—is in a fight with Leon County Tax Collector Doris Maloy about her apparent plan to delay accepting new, first-time applications for Florida Concealed Weapon or Firearm licenses as the county gets back to normal services. Maloy reportedly has a “five-point plan” that will open four service centers around the northern Florida county. However, new gun license applications will still not be accepted, and Hammer is not happy. She’s advised Maloy in a letter that the Tax Collector lacks authority to make such a call under state law, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
A few days ago, the Second Amendment Foundation issued a statement declaring to local governments that if they are not issuing concealed carry licenses, citizens should not be arrested for carrying concealed. It’s something of a “Catch 22” situation. People can’t carry concealed without a permit or license. While the law allows them to apply, local governments or police agencies have blamed the COVID-19 outbreak for their decision to not accept new license applications to reduce potential contact between their employees and the public.
But there is nothing in the law, nor the Constitution, that allows for certain rights to be suspended because of a virus outbreak. So, SAF, the NRA, Firearms Policy Coalition and other groups have been busy legally.
These legal and political skirmishes keep anti-gunners reined in, but they also cost lots of money. That’s why all gun rights organizations are appealing to members and supporters to keep contributing, especially now that there are signs the economy is recovering from the coronavirus shutdown.
As Blocher, the Duke University law professor noted, the Second Amendment prevents the kind of heavy handed gun control now unfolding in Canada. That’s not to say U.S. anti-gunners wouldn’t like to change that situation.
This is why, as many leading gun rights advocates repeatedly tell people, “elections matter.” Donald Trump’s election in 2016 brought about some 200 appointments of conservative, pro-Second Amendment judges to the federal bench. For that to continue, he must win in November and Republicans will have to retain the Senate.
Somewhere out there, gun control advocates are planning their election strategy to flip the nation backwards. Gun owners who are alarmed about the Canadian situation and want to prevent that from happening here—Second Amendment or not—need to get in the game right now.
According to gun rights activists, the only things separating the U.S. and Canada are an invisible border and the Second Amendment. Ignoring that or taking it for granted could prove disastrous in November.
About Dave Workman