NRA Annual Meeting: Day 1

I arrived in Pittsburgh Thursday evening.  I toured the Exhibit Hall floor as numerous companies erected their booths and displays. And then attended a couple of gatherings before retiring on the floor of the GunUp.com crew. It will take several days for me to post all my coverage of the NRA Annual Meeting.


Bitter Interviewed by NRA News


Sebastian’s printed magazine being curiously inspected by Cam of NRA News.


The Gathering


Colleen – she was one of the defendant’s in the McDonald vs Chicago case.


David Koppel and Dave Hardy


Socializing…


Afterwards I joined a gathering of fellow bloggers. Including Caleb (pictured right), who’s floor I’d crash on.


More bloggers…


The illustrious Jay G, fellow gun blogger, fellow rennie. We finally got to meet. As a former New Englander I have much sympathy for my digital friend “stuck in Massachusetts”.


But I must say, I didn’t realize people greeted one another like this in Mass.

😉

Advertisements

NRA-ILA Alert: Amicus Brief Support for McDonald vs Chicago

Urgent Alert: Ask Your U.S. Senators And Representative To Sign Amicus Brief Supporting Second Amendment Rights In The States!
Friday, November 13, 2009
As a critical Second Amendment case goes before the United States Supreme Court, U.S. Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and Jon Tester (D-MT), and Congressmen Mike Ross (D-AR) and Mark Souder (R-IN) are gathering signatures for an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief by Members of Congress.  And we need your support for this important effort next week.

The case is McDonald v. City of Chicago, and it will answer the question of whether the Second Amendment applies to the states—as the Congress clearly intended in the 1860s, when it adopted the Fourteenth Amendment to protect constitutional rights against abuse by state and local governments.  This brief is an opportunity for today’s Congress to show just as clearly that it respects the Second Amendment’s importance to all Americans—not just residents of the District of Columbia and other federal territories.

The brief describes Congress’s debates on the Fourteenth Amendment, and points out the many occasions—from 1866 to 2005—when the Congress has spoken in favor of the Second Amendment as protecting a right of all Americans, and taken action to protect that right against actions such as gun confiscation and predatory lawsuits.  It also makes the case for Congress’s interest (under its constitutional war powers) in preserving an armed citizenry as part of America’s national defense.

 

When Congress speaks, the Supreme Court listens.   And it did in the historic Heller case last year when 55 Senators and 250 Representatives signed an amicus brief supporting the Second Amendment as an individual right.  Now every Senator and Congressman who supports the rights of all Americans should step forward to be heard by signing this brief in the McDonald case.

 

The brief must be filed within the week, so we need your immediate help! On Monday through Thursday, please call your U.S. Senators and Representative, and urge them to sign on to this critically important brief, which will be a key part of the legal battle to protect the Second Amendment in the U.S. Supreme Court.

McDonald vs Chicago (a.k.a. Alan Gura part II)

If you have not heard, Alan Gura, the lawyer who argued the case for Dick Heller in DC vs Heller will now be arguing for McDonald vs Chicago.  This case has the potential to a) defeat Chicago draconian and “unreasonable” gun ban, and b) garner incorporation of the 2nd Amendment. Which would require states to also acknowledge and adhere to the ideals of the 2nd Amendment.

Below is the press release by Alan Gura for the Second Amendment Foundation as well as some other relevant links.

***

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it will hear the case of McDonald v. City of Chicago, and decide whether the right to keep and bear arms secured by the Second Amendment protects Americans from overreaching state and local governments.

At issue is a 27-year-old Chicago law banning handguns, requiring the annual taxation of firearms, and otherwise interfering with the right of law-abiding individuals to keep guns at home for self-defense. The case was brought on behalf of four Chicago residents, the Second Amendment Foundation, and the Illinois State Rifle Association.

Last year, in the landmark case of District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to keep and bear arms. However, as that case concerned the actions of the District of Columbia government, a federal entity, the high court was not called upon to decide whether the right bound states and local governments. Over the years, almost the entire Bill of Rights has been held to apply to state and local governments by operation of the Fourteenth Amendment.

“The freedoms we enjoy as Americans are secured to us against violation by all levels of government,” noted Alan Gura, of Gura & Possessky, PLLC, lead counsel for the McDonald plaintiffs. “State and local politicians should be on notice: the Second Amendment is a normal part of the Bill of Rights, and it is coming to your town.”

Otis McDonald, a Chicago resident since 1952 who led the fight to integrate his union local in the 1960s and is a plaintiff in the case, welcomed the news.

“I am grateful the Supreme Court has agreed to hear this case,” McDonald said. “I now pray that the Court secures me and all other law-abiding citizens the right to defend ourselves and our families.”

SAF founder Alan Gottlieb said the case is of paramount importance to American citizens, to see that their constitutional rights are respected not only by the Congress, but by state and local governments.

“SAF was delighted to bring this case in cooperation with the Illinois State Rifle Association and the four local plaintiffs because a gun ban is no less onerous to civil rights in Chicago than it was in the District of Columbia,” Gottlieb observed. “Such a law cannot be allowed to stand unchallenged.”

Chicago attorney David Sigale commented, “The City of Chicago cannot take from millions of Americans the fundamental freedom of self-defense in one’s own home. We are confident the Court will stand on the side of the law-abiding citizens and the Bill of Rights.”

“We’re pleased to hear that the Supreme Court has decided to take a look at Chicago’s gun laws,” added ISRA President Don Moran. “In this time of economic uncertainty and increasing lawlessness, the good people of Chicago ought not have to choose between violating Chicago’s gun ban, and protecting themselves and their loved ones.”

The Chicago gun ban challenge will likely be among the most closely watched constitutional law cases in decades. At stake is not just the question of whether the Second Amendment secures the right to arms against state and local governments, but also the extent to which the Supreme Court preserves individual liberty against encroachment by state and local governments.

Oral argument will possibly be scheduled early this coming winter, with a decision expected by June 2010. Gura will argue the case on behalf of the McDonald plaintiffs.

More Info:

Second Amendment Foundation:  Press Release by Alan Gura
http://www.chicagoguncase.com/2009/09/30/press-release-supreme-court-to-hear-mcdonald-case/

U.S. Supreme Court docket
http://origin.www.supremecourtus.gov/docket/08-1521.htm

Wikipedia Article
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McDonald_v._Chicago