Friday, December 10, 2010

You Must Get Gun Range Training. But You Can’t Get Gun Range Training

Second Amendment lawyer Alan Gura filed an appeal this week in the case of Ezell v. Chicago, challenging the city's ban on gun ranges. It's likely to be one of the first important appeals court decisions to define the new shape of Second Amendment jurisprudence.

Gura is already the most important lawyer in that field, with his one-two punch of Supreme Court victories in 2008’s D.C. v. Heller (which established that the amendment protects an individual right to own weapons, at least for self-defense in the home) and 2010’s McDonald v. Chicago (which established that that right applies to states and localities as well as the federal government).

After June's McDonald decision declaring that Chicago’s ban on handgun possession violated the Second Amendment, the city continues to impose picayune and detailed demands and restrictions on its citizens’ ability to possess and use weapons. One lawsuit, Benson v. Chicago, supported by the National Rifle Association, was filed in July challenging the new regulations on many grounds, including the ban on gun ownership by adults under 21, the ban on sale or transfer of weapons (except via inheritance), and the discretionary power of the superintendent of police to ban any particular type of weapon he decides is unsafe.

Gura, with the institutional support of the Second Amendment Foundation and the Illinois State Rifle Association, sued in August challenging one specific element of Chicago’s new gun laws, a suit that could expand where and how we have a constitutionally protected right to use guns.

Chicago insists a legal weapon permit holder must have a signed affidavit from a firearms instructor affirming that he or she completed a training course, including at least one hour of gun range training. Chicago simultaneously prevents its residents from meeting that criterion in the city they live in. Yes, that’s right: The city demands gun range training to own a gun yet bans gun ranges at the same time.

More here

News from Malta: "A hooded man emerged from the darkness brandishing a crowbar and told the 52-year-old jeweller to hand over his black bag. Mr Mizzi refused to obey, prompting the thief to strike him with the metal bar, leaving a head wound and an ugly gash on his left cheek. Meanwhile, two other hooded men pounced on his son from another direction, brandishing a sawn-off shotgun. “Somehow, my son snatched the gun from them and when they realised what was happening, they ran off,” the father, who did not wish to be photographed, said. His son then fired around five shots, aiming at the hooded man who attacked his father... his son managed to hit the remaining assailant in the leg, incapacitating him." [Malta is an English-speaking island in the Mediterranean]

A call to arms: "So here’s a call to arms, quite literally. If you are a gun owner, and can use your weapon safely and responsibly, think seriously about whether you might owe a duty to yourself, your family and your neighbors to carry a sidearm in public. Even if not, hold yourself as though you might well be armed. Ladies can keep a hand inside their purses and look people in the eye as they approach in a parking lot. Gentlemen should keep a hand in a coat pocket and walk confidently and tall. And if that hand clutches a personal defense arm, so much the better. Bad guys won’t like it. That’s a good thing.”

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