Second Amendment Gun Groups Go After Connecticut Gun Ban
Protectors of the right to keep and bear arms, Gun Owners of America, filed an amicus brief in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Court at the end of May, supporting Connecticut gun owners who have an unlawful ban on their semi-automatic rifles and large capacity magazines. Following the mass hysteria surrounding the Sandy Hook incident, liberals and gun grabbers sought to impose the draconian gun ban. Now, a challenge is before the court.
The case before the court is Shew v. Malloy and is specifically a Second Amendment case, wherein the plaintiff has the backing of not only Gun Owners of America, but also Gun Owners Foundation, U.S. Justice Foundation, Oregon Firearms Educational Foundation, The Lincoln Institute for Research and Education, The Abraham Lincoln Foundation for Public Policy Research, Institute on the Constitution, Conservative Legal Defense and Education Fund, and Policy Analysis Center In Support of Appellants and Reversal.
According to the brief, “The Connecticut ban on certain government-disfavored semiautomatic firearms and high-capacity magazines violates the Second Amendment because it infringes upon the right of the people of Connecticut, as citizens of the United States, to choose from among constitutionally protected arms those weapons that, in their opinion, are best suited for their lawful activities, including self-defense in their homes.”
“This bedrock freedom recognized in the Second Amendment may not be compromised by a self-empowered judiciary exercising any degree of scrutiny — rational, intermediate, or strict — such as was employed by the district court below,” the brief continues. “There is simply no room for balancing the right to keep and bear arms against governmentally contrived gun-control needs for putative goals of public safety.”
“Nor is there any excuse for Connecticut to have exempted favored government officials or self-registered citizens from its selective ban,” adds the brief. “The Second Amendment right belongs to all Americans, not just to those citizens who work, or have worked, for certain government agencies, or to those who have submitted, themselves to a government gun registration scheme which historically has led to gun confiscation.”
The district court’s ruling that the Connecticut ban is constitutional subordinates the people’s unalienable right to arm themselves to protect their constitutional republic from falling into the hands of a tyrant, thereby undermining the stated purpose of the Second Amendment — “the security of a free state.”
David Whitney with the Institute on the Constitution told FreedomOutpost, “We are interested in this case in particular because what is often misunderstood is the Second Amendment is not some…you know, … something you can mess around with. The founders said several things, among them, they said the right to keep and bear arms was ‘necessary,’ absolutely necessary to a ensure a free people. They said a constitutional militia was necessary. So the language of the Second Amendment itself, should give people pause when any level of government thinks that messing around with that element of the Constitution that our founders said was necessary, they are free to do.”
“One of the ironic things in all of this is really the agency principle,” Whitney continued. “The government is our agent. We brought this government into existence. It had no existence before we brought it into existence. It had no existence except by our consent, and if we the people have no right to keep and bear arms, which is what is said in the Second Amendment, then the government agents… don’t have the power to keep and bear arms.”
Whitney made a distinction between the rights of the people and the “power” granted to the servants of the people to keep and bear arms. Police and military are granted power to keep and bear arms by the people in their capacity as our servants. They do not grant us rights, nor do they have authority to remove or restrict those rights.
“If we grant them the power to carry a gun and then they turn around on us and say ‘No, you can’t have a gun,’ then we confront them and explain to them that they are our servant and are hired by us,” Whitney explained.
Whitney then concluded that IOTC got involved in the case because they believe the proper interpretation of the Second Amendment is “absolutely essential in the preservation of our republic.”
Larry Pratt, president of Gun Owners of America, seconded Whitney concerning the language of the Second Amendment. He told FreedomOutpost that there was no update on the briefing just yet, and joked that the courts have not even followed through on Attorney General Eric Holder’s contempt of Congress charge, so he wasn’t expecting them to move faster on this.
Pratt has written some practical advice for Connecticut gun owners on how they must resist the tyranny being imposed upon them through lawless gun grabbing legislators. Several roles the people can play is as educators of the Second Amendment, being jury members and using jury nullification. “Jurors have a vitally important role to play in a constitutional republic — which is a central, final check against arbitrary power. Since they are not told of that role by judges, they must learn it before they are ever called to jury duty.”
“In a constitutional republic, interpretation of the Constitution is too important a responsibility to be left to the lawyers, even if they serve in the role of judges,” Pratt said.
“Indeed, the origin of jury nullification in the United States is often traced to the prosecution of John Peter Zenger for seditious libel against officials in the colonial government in New York,” adds Pratt. “His crime was to have criticized the government without its prior approval.”
“At Zenger’s trial in 1735, he asserted that his criticisms were true, but the judge instructed the jury that truth was no defense, that Zenger admitted his guilt, and that they should find Zenger guilty. The jury paid little heed to the judge, acquitting Zenger after only minutes of deliberation,” Pratt concluded.
As we reported earlier this year, Connecticut gun owners are being squeezed in a state that was once a strong gun state, but has been overrun by open communists and liberals of all stripes. Not only are they dealing a great blow to gun owners, but they have virtually run Connecticut into the ground economically, according to gubernatorial candidate Joe Visconti. Visconti deserves gun owners support, especially in light of Tom Foley’s shenanigans.
Many have registered their guns and nearly 300,000 have not, making them criminals in the eyes of the state that has broken through the bonds placed on it by the people. Stand firm Connecticut and play the man. May God grant you the grace necessary to overcome the tyrants who would enslave you.