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bon homme richard
06-01-2012, 12:41 AM
I attended a meeting of the Beverly Hills Bar Association last night, at which UCLA Law Professor Adam Winkler spoke about his new book, Gun Fight: The Battle Over The Right To Bear Arms In America. To my complete surprise (I mean, he is a UCLA law professor!), he came out with a moderate position: the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, but there can be reasonable regulation of guns consistent with the 2nd Amendment.

He went through the history of gun ownership and control, mentioning quite a few things I did not know. For example, that there was gun control at the earliest point in our country’s history – blacks and Tories could not own guns. (There was also an individual mandate, but don’t let any Obamacare supporters hear that. Each eligible member of the militia, that is, alll white men between 18 and 45, was required to purchase out of his own pocket, if he did not own one, a military-grade musket, power, and ball.) And that the first ordinance passed by the municipality of Dodge City, Kansas, strictly enforced by such folks as Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson, was a ban on carrying guns within city limits.

Another point he made was that the NRA was historically pro-gun control.. The president of the NRA testified to Congress in favor of the National Firearms Act. The NRA also was active in drafting and supporting the Uniform Firearms Act, which forms the basis for most state gun law.

What’s more, California’s ban on open carry of loaded firearms was drafted by a conservative Republican, Don Mulford, and signed by Governor Ronald Reagan, in response to the Black Panthers’ cocked and locked carrying of guns everywhere, especially of their armed parade through the state capitol in May 1967.

In terms of his own philosophy, he argued that both sides can and should come to a compromise. Gun control fanatics should stop passing laws that are patently unconstitutional, such as the D.C. and Chicago ordinances, and gun rights extremists should stop saying everyone has the right to own a machine gun. The former argument will result in gun laws being struck down, and the latter, as Alan Gura (who was in the audience, BTW), the lawyer who argued the case for Heller said, “If I had not made a distinction between heavy weapons like machine guns and “normal” weapons, I would have lost, 9 - 0.”

In the Q & A period, I asked Winkler about the ban of open carry unloaded in CA. He agreed that it is unconstitutional, and it will be struck down. Which will be a severe setback to the gun controllers. I managed to remain calm and not pump my first in the air.

All in all, a very interesting talk. I have bought his book and will read it shortly.

Librarian
06-01-2012, 12:45 AM
Apparently always worth seeing Prof. Winkler.

See also the thread on Dave Kopel's latest article at SSRN.

radioburning
06-01-2012, 12:51 AM
But, I want an MP5!

dantodd
06-01-2012, 5:36 AM
Here are a few more really good threads on Adam and his book.

http://calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=493439

https://calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=507480

speedrrracer
06-01-2012, 6:17 AM
In terms of his own philosophy, he argued that both sides can and should come to a compromise. Gun control fanatics should stop passing laws that are patently unconstitutional, such as the D.C. and Chicago ordinances, and gun rights extremists should stop saying everyone has the right to own a machine gun. The former argument will result in gun laws being struck down, and the latter, as Alan Gura (who was in the audience, BTW), the lawyer who argued the case for Heller said, “If I had not made a distinction between heavy weapons like machine guns and “normal” weapons, I would have lost, 9 - 0.”



In recent decades, as politics becomes more and more divisive, it becomes apparent that Professor Winkler's philosophy is perhaps what the USA needs most at this moment.

Not just in gun control, but in all things political. Liberals and conservatives alike need to self-police, and regulate their extreme tendencies, because it just infuriates off the other side, which then reacts with over-the-top crap of their own. No one in served, nothing gets done and everyone is mad and divided.

A-J
06-01-2012, 8:23 AM
In terms of his own philosophy, he argued that both sides can and should come to a compromise. Gun control fanatics should stop passing laws that are patently unconstitutional.

While I agree that we *should* compromise, I do not see a way that we *can* since the anti gunners are arguing from a standpoint of fear and propaganda. You cannot reason with people who are afraid, or politicians who do not want to be perceived as gun rights activists bottom bish. It is not relevant that the legislation that usually gets enacted does absolutely nothing to address the original issue which sparked the legislation to begin with. IE a previously convicted felon, using an illegally obtained weapon, commits a crime. Therefore a law is passed making ownership of such a gun a crime. The politicians who endorsed that are now the fair haired boys for making sure it won't happen again by God! completely ignoring:

1. convicted felons cannot own guns
2. the gun was not obtained legally

The net effect is that Joe Gun Owner who is 100% legit can cross another firearm of the list of "gonna buy sometime" firearms while Joe Criminal will still be able to get one whenever he chooses, since he's not going to the LGS to make his purchases.

It spekas volumes that every pro-gun treatise I've read is immediately crapped all over by the antis as being wrong (even by people who have never actually read the work or looked at the backup documentation!), depsite being prepared using actual facts and figures relative to the topic at hand.

dantodd
06-01-2012, 8:33 AM
While I agree that we *should* compromise, I do not see a way that we *can* since the anti gunners are arguing from a standpoint of fear and propaganda.

What gun owners and a tivists are generally asking for should not be the starting point for compromise. If you want to compromise let's start at "no civilian ownership" vs. "nukes for all" and go from there.

I'll give up H-bombs and other NBC weapons in private hands for them recognizing the right to all individually served semi-auto hand and long guns. Seems fair, no?

Then, we can give up any conventional artillery with a range of over 5 miles and munitions over 15 lbs payload for public carry and Eliminating the NFA and reopening the registry.

Now we get to more interesting questions. Explosives, do we give up the right to use explosives over a certain energy level and certain amounts? Maybe less than 5lbs. of anything more powerful than C4?

Wheredo we draw the line on crew served weapons? By caliber? By range? Projectile weight?


I'm all for compromise but gun owners have already given up 90% of the world's "arms."