Category Archives: Civil rights

Total failure to even identify a valid objective

Alan Gura and company have a new brief in the ongoing Ezell case in which Chicago required range training to get a gun license and then banned ranges.

Chicago’s arguments are so idiotic and insulting that it’s going to be a pretty open-and-shut case. There are so many money quotes that you really have to read it, but here’s one of my favorites (emphasis added):

Scudiero testified that she has never been to a gun range, has never read or studied any literature about gun ranges, has no experience or education with either the structure or operation of gun ranges, and has never investigated gun ranges for zoning purposes. App. 95, 104.

[…]

Nonetheless, the lower court allowed Scudiero to testify as to what she “imagine[s]” happens at a gun range. App. 96-97. Based on this imagination, Scudiero opined that gun ranges should be zoned as an “intense” use, similar to taverns, rock crushing facilities, salvage yards, incinerators, drive-through facilities, and adult establishments. Specifically, Scudiero opined gun ranges belong in manufacturing districts, but even then, only on a case-by-case special use basis. App. 98-101. However, Scudiero had no knowledge of whether gun ranges emit noise or emissions of any kind. App. 105-06.

And another great one:

The end result in this case would be the same under either strict or intermediate scrutiny, which requires that there be a “strong showing” that the regulation is “substantially related to an important governmental objective.” Skoien, 614 F.3d at 641 (citations omitted). Often times, as in Skoien, Yancey, or Williams, the governmental objective in gun regulation is not elusive, leaving courts to struggle with difficult questions of balancing and breadth. What makes this an unusually clear Second Amendment case is the government’s total failure to even identify a valid objective. Defendant’s attorney advised the City Council that it could do whatever it believed to be “reasonable” regarding gun ranges, and so the City Council simply banned ranges.

One more zinger:

Also unavailing is the claim that ranges can be banned because regulating them would overburden Defendant. Perhaps the people should be thankful Chicago does not find the “need” to regulate bookstores and churches too burdensome. The court below did not quite rely upon this argument, ruling only that the absence of regulation rendered it unsafe to enjoin the ban. It nonetheless merits mention that a “right” entitles individuals to do something, and is not dependent on the graces of the government. The notion that the government may ban outright whatever it finds too difficult to regulate is not a constitutional doctrine. If gun ranges are constitutionally protected, Defendant’s wholly optional regulatory costs are irrelevant. People do not lose their rights because the government decides it is too expensive to regulate or otherwise accommodate them.

Finally some much-needed outrage

I’ve been really happy with the media firestorm that’s erupted in recent days over the TSA’s dehumanizing tactics. They’ve even got congress yelling at the chief John Pistole. My favorite though is what the Taiwanese apparently think of the whole affair.

My First Patdown

SayUncle and Joe Huffman have the dirt on the latest TSA shenanigans.

ETA: more from a former TSA employee.

Nice to hear from the horse’s mouth

A former New Jersey cop talks about the changing (and worrying) new reality and militarization of law enforcement.

Ahh, the hopenchange is strong today

From the New York Times:

An Obama administration task force that includes officials from the Justice and Commerce Departments, the F.B.I. and other agencies recently began working on draft legislation to strengthen and expand a 1994 law requiring carriers to make sure their systems can be wiretapped.

But I thought Republicans were Big Brother fascists and Democrats loved peace and freedom!

California makes Fake Steve illegal

You know Fake Steve? Thy guy who runs a humorous blog from the hypothetical perspective of Steve Jobs? He’s now most likely a criminal, thanks to a bill just signed into law.

Obama proposes law to enable feds to snoop on any internet traffic

Ahh, the hope and change are so thick you could cut them with a knife! Taking a page from a lobbyist I met at GRPC, I’m gonna call this law the Privacy Elimination and Fascism Creation act of 2011.

Obama isn’t Bush lite, heck, he’s not even Bush low sodium, he’s Bush II! What a joke. Call your congresscritter and tell them you’ll tar and feather them if they vote for this abomination.