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SC: Lawmakers, judges seek help for SC Stand Your Ground defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The South Carolina Supreme Court is asking legislators to help them better define the state's "stand-your-ground" self-defense law, but a group of senators said Thursday that immediately expanding the law isn't the right way to do it.

A Senate subcommittee decided not to vote on a bill Thursday that would shift the burden to prosecutors to prove that those who have killed someone were not in fear for their lives when claiming self-defense and allow an instant appeal that could delay trials for years if a judge rules against a defendant. The bill passed the House 106-0 in February.

"This is a bad idea," said Sen. Greg Hembree, a Republican who was a prosecutor in Horry County.
 

DC: Second Amendment Court Case Victor: ‘Armed Queers Don’t Get Bashed’
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The gay gun rights group Pink Pistols, a plaintiff in the Washington, DC, case that resulted in a pro-self-defense ruling on May 17, contends that “armed queers don’t get bashed.”

In GRACE et al v. DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA et al, Matthew Grace and Pink Pistols were pleased to see U.S. District Judge Richard Leon rule against DC’s “good reason” requirement for concealed carry permit applicants. Breitbart News reported on the majority opinion, in which Leon wrote, “Because the right to bear arms includes the right to carry firearms for self-defense both inside and outside the home, I find that the District’s ‘good reason’ requirement likely places an unconstitutional burden on this right.”
 

ID: Pocket pistols are popular for concealed carry, may become a trend in Idaho
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Carrying concealed handguns for personal defense is becoming quite accepted here in Idaho. In fact, in a few months Idaho will become one of less than a dozen states that allow permit-less carry or what is commonly referred to as “constitutional carry.” That means you do not need a permit to carry a concealed handgun.

Handgun sales are increasing and one of the hottest selling classes of handguns are the small subcompact handguns, or “pocket pistols.”
 

RI: R.I. federal judge upholds Bristol's concealed weapons policy
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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In ruling Thursday, U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell Jr. struck down Gendreau's arguments under the U.S. Constitution, but declined to take up the state law claims as the matter has already been decided by the state Supreme Court.

"[The] Town of Bristol's policy does not limit an individual's right to possess handguns in the home; it is only concerned with possession and use in the public sphere ..." McConnell wrote. "Bristol's law conditioning permits for concealed weapons on a showing of need is well within the cadre of permissible `public welfare regulations aimed at addressing perceived inherent dangers and risks surrounding the public possession of loaded, operable firearms.'"
 

Weld may pass anti-Trump muster but can he win Libertarians?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A Conservative Review report by Rob Eno, a Massachusetts Republican activist, on Thursday asserted that Weld has taken “statist positions that should make libertarians run” from him. Eno listed the former governor’s support of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, Weld’s backing of affirmative actions policies and his stance on gun control.

“Weld, a first-term Republican who opposed a ban on assault weapons when he ran for governor in 1990, said he had changed his mind because of the growing number of teenage murders and weapons on city streets,” a United Press International report said in September 1993. That position stands in stark contrast to the Libertarian Party’s official platform in 2014.
 

Trump, who once backed gun restrictions, to address NRA conference
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Sitting under a Beretta pistol banner roughly the size of a small house, Loran Braught scratches his short white mustache as he considers whether a Manhattan real estate developer will protect his right to carry.

It's a question that Donald Trump, a billionaire from New York who once supported restricting gun rights, will have to put to rest on Friday in Louisville, Kentucky, where he's scheduled to speak to tens of thousands of gun enthusiasts at the National Rifle Association's annual conference.
 

The Big Guide To Pistol Sights
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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One of the most beneficial changes that you can make to a handgun is the sights. Most pistol sights while serviceable leave a lot to be desired. The front sight is boxy covering a major portion of the target while the notch of the rear barely allows for “proper” alignment with the front sight. Factory sights also tend to be too busy with white outlines, three dots; distracting from aligning the front sight on target.
 

Honor Defense Supports Military Charity with Ollie North Signature Pistol
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Honor Defense has partnered with Lt. Col. Oliver L. North USMC (Ret.) to support The Duskin & Stephens Foundation. Honor Defense will display the pistol this weekend in Booth 6232 at the NRA Show.

The pistol is serial #1776. In addition, Lt. Col. North also autographed a Marine Corps Digital Desert Cover, and his book “American Heroes on the Homefront.” The Duskin and Stephens Foundation has also included a barn wood flag hand made by a Green Beret.
 

The State of the Gun Union — Concealed Carry in the US
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A recent ruling by a federal judge that struck down certain provisions of Washington D.C.’s concealed carry law as “likely unconstitutional” in the case of Grace v. District of Columbia has spurred on a needed conversation on the topic of firearms rights for the private citizen.

For legal context, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller in 2008 affirmed the Constitutional right of the private individual to own a firearm for use in legal self-defense in such federal enclaves as Washington D.C. This right was acknowledged to extend to state residents in the McDonald vs. Chicago decision of 2010, with the Court stating that legally owned and used handguns are viable for personal self-defense.
 

Trump's Supreme Court list: all conservative, some provocative
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The list's release seems to have reassured some conservatives who may have doubted Trump would name a genuine conservative to the high court, which has a vacancy following the February death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia.

"I've heard nothing but positive about this. People in the Senate say this is going to relieve a lot of people," said Republican Jeff Sessions of Alabama, a key Trump supporter in the Senate.
 

SC: ‘Stand your ground’ bill stalls in Senate, unlikely to become law
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A bill that would have expanded the state’s “stand your ground” law by shifting the burden of proof to the prosecution will likely fail to become law before the Statehouse session ends in two weeks.

Senators said they needed more time to study a South Carolina Supreme Court opinion published Wednesday to see how it plays into the wording of the current proposal.

With just two weeks left in the session and one more committee meeting scheduled between now and the June 2 adjournment, the bill stands little chance of becoming law.
 

DC: Judge says DC residents don’t have to show a “good reason” to carry a gun
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A federal judge has interpreted the Constitution correctly in agreeing that the right to keep and bear arms does not require a reason that satisfies the state.

Up until Tuesday, citizens of Washington D.C. were required to give “good reason” to police officers when applying for a concealed-carry permit. That meant a person had to either show “good reason to fear injury” or “any other proper reason for carrying a pistol,” whether for a job or other protections.

But that’s unconstitutional and U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon struck down that requirement in his decision imposing a preliminary injunction:
 

Former Gov. William Weld joins Libertarian VP race
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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n fact, Weld’s biggest vulnerabilities aren’t within the two major parties, but rather the resistance he will receive from purist Libertarians. In the past, he has endorsed certain Second Amendment restrictions, been in favor of the disastrous Iraq war, and been a big spender when it comes to tax dollars.

Weirdly enough, it may be those vulnerabilities that help Weld shore up some of Johnson’s perceived weaknesses. Johnson has been a bit too conservative on social issues for many, and most Libertarians are seen as too isolationist when it comes to foreign policy.
 

MO: Experts: If "stand your ground" becomes Missouri law, courts may decide what it means
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The legislature passed a so-called "stand your ground" provision that aims to give Missourians who use guns in self-defense greater protection from prosecutors who might argue they should have found a way to retreat before firing their weapons.

Gov. Jay Nixon could still veto the bill. If he does, the Republican-led legislature would have a chance to override the governor during the annual September veto session.

Proponents of stand your ground say it could protect Missourians from overzealous prosecutors. Opponents say it could turn the Show-Me State into the Wild West.
 

MI: Common sense lacking in never-ending national gun debate
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Harry Frank loves guns, and has all his life. He shoots them, trades them, sells them. He owns an AK-47 and has a concealed carry license in Michigan and New Mexico.

But he is also a “1960s liberal, a veteran of the sit-ins, protests, marches, and demonstrations that marked that decade.”
 

GA: Where do Gwinnett candidates stand on campus carry?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Gov. Nathan Deal’s veto of legislation that would allow firearms on Georgia college campuses has provoked a backlash from gun rights advocates and praise from others. So The Atlanta Journal-Constitution asked candidates in three contested state House of Representatives races in Gwinnett County where they stand on “campus carry.” Here’s what they told us. Responses have been edited for length and clarity.
 

CA: California Gun Control Measures Pretty Much Bans Rifles, Imposes Background Checks On Ammunition
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The state Senate on Thursday approved sweeping new restrictions on using guns in California in response to the December mass shooting by two terrorists that left 14 dead in San Bernardino.

Lawmakers approved 11 bills including measures mandating background checks for Californians buying ammunition and outlawing the manufacture and sale of semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines.

The bills, which next go to the Assembly for consideration, represent the most ambitious effort at gun control in decades in California, which already has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation.
 

2016 NRA Annual Meeting, Day Zero
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The National Rifle Association annual meeting officially starts tomorrow and runs the rest of the weekend, but I received an invite to an event set up by the American Suppressor Association where I’d shoot a whole bunch of suppressed guns for free, with other people’s ammo.

Of course I went. I’d be crazy not to.
 

CA: What Do California’s New Gun Safety Laws Mean?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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The 11 bills include requiring owners of homemade guns to register them with the state, outlawing the manufacture and sale of semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines, limiting the lending of firearms to specified family members, and even establishing a Firearm Violence Research Center to study potential policies to reduce gun violence, The Los Angeles Times reported.
 

Trump Has an Awesome SCOTUS List
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Best of all? Trump has -- and this is the one thing I love about him, even when I'm hating him -- pissed off all the right people. You can easily picture Slate's Mark Joseph Stern squirming in his seat as he wrote:

These are judges who think the First Amendment protects a religious group’s right to discriminate against gays, and plutocrats’ right to buy elections, but not the free speech of students or abortion doctors. Down the line, they view the Second Amendment as near-absolute. They don’t like economic regulation, abortion, or contraception, but they don’t mind stringent voting restrictions. Oh, and they are all absolutely brilliant.
 

The rulings keep coming
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Even at bleak periods in the defense of gun rights, we still can find moments of hope. This is to be expected in a nation as divided as ours, with some states solidly on our side and some—including the largest, unfortunately—that are determined to go the other way.

Moments like these are often given to us by the courts, reminding us that rights are too often not the will of the majority. Two such cases have come in the last few days. And to make the rulings sweeter, they were handed down in courts in California and Washington, D.C.
 

 QUOTES TO REMEMBER
After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it. — William Burroughs, 1992

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