Consequences

I’m as close as you can get to a First Amendment absolutist.

As a small L libertarian, I’m also big on due process and the restraint of excessive police power.

With all of that said?

I can’t be the only one who wouldn’t of minded seeing this jagoff “bump his head“ getting into the police car.

Cognitive Dissonance

City of Anaheim “respects free speech”…

but

“We support free speech, but…” = “We don’t support free speech”.  

Points will be docked from the first member of the local prog peanut gallery who says “I thought you Republicans supported property rights – why not allow the vendor to decide what to do with their own property?”

This is the city getting a business – possibly sympathetic, possibly not – to do its censoring for it.   Just like the Administration is doing with Facebook and Twitter.   

But go ahead.  Suggest it.  

Going About It Wrong

Cubans, actually suffering the oppression that a few million “progressive” snowflakes fantasized they were suffering during the Trump term, are thinking, again, about risking it all to come to America:

And our administration will have none of that:

 Note to Cubans:   it’s a rookie flub.  As long as Biden Harris is in office, you need to come via the southern border.

Problem solved. 

Question:  Mayorkas didn’t put this out via a mean tweet.  So why am I feeling ashamed to be an American, right about now? 

Never Waste A Crisis

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Democrats seized on a flu virus to panic the public into accepting restrictions on civil liberties including ‘fortifying’ the election to defeat Bad Orange Man. Now they want storm troopers to go door-to-door, forcing people to take a counter-measure that doesn’t prevent you from catching the virus and won’t prevent you from spreading it to other people. It’s solely intended to reduce the severity of symptoms in breakthrough cases (which we no longer count as “Covid” cases, since May). And why is it any of the government’s business how severe my flu symptoms are?

Because they saved your life and now they own you. No, literally, that’s the justification. ““The federal government has spent trillions of dollars to try and keep Americans alive during this pandemic,” Becerra said on CNN’s “New Day.” “So it is absolutely the government’s business . . . .”

The arrogance is breathtaking. An earlier generation of Americans would have risen up and exterminated such would-be tyrants for their insolence. Push hard enough and maybe this one will, too?

Joe Doakes

There are seriously times where I wonder how this nation doesn’t break into somewhere between two and six different independent countries.

This year isn’t changing anything.

Smack

Justices Alito and Gorsuch pimp-slaps the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) with a rolled-up copy of the First Amendment.

FIllmore County, with the MPCA at their backs, wanted to force a group of Amish families in Fillmore County to either put in septic tanks or be evicted from their homes:

Fillmore County in 2013 started requiring homes to have modern septic systems to dispose of “gray water” from dishwashing, laundry and such. The Amish sought an exemption, saying their religion prohibits that technology. They offered instead to use earthen basins filled with wood chips to filter water as it drains, which are allowed in some states including Montana and Wyoming. But the county went as far as seeking a court order to force 23 families from their homes if they refused to comply, Gorsuch wrote.

Justice Samuel Alito wrote that the Minnesota courts “plainly misinterpreted and misapplied” the federal Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, which was also at issue in the Philadelphia case.

The act “prohibits governments from infringing sincerely held religious beliefs and practices except as a last resort,” Gorsuch wrote, urging the Minnesota court and local authorities to swiftly resolve the dispute.

“In this country, neither the Amish nor anyone else should have to choose between their farms and their faith,” he said.

Trump’s judicial legacy is looking more and more to far outweigh all stress he caused.

You Were Warned. Fat Lotta Good It Did.

Politicized “Science” in Public Health is to “Science” as Scientology is to “Science”. .

Case in point: Vaping was a godsend for millions of smokers who wanted to quit smoking tobacco, but couldn’t.

Big Left, riding a wave of prohibitionism driven by (pick one) (or two, or all of them, I don’t know, it may be entirely appropriate):

  • Self-righteous dudgeon, or
  • A pathological hatred of people enjoying themselves, or
  • The aesthetics of putting something in one’s mouth for fun, or
  • A need to control everyone’s behavior

…drove a wave of rules and statutes that treated vape like cigarettes.

And the “unintended” consequences?

Well, what do you think?

When San Francisco voters overwhelmingly approved a 2018 ballot measure banning the sale of flavored tobacco products — including menthol cigarettes and flavored vape liquids — public health advocates celebrated. After all, tobacco use poses a significant threat to public health and health equity, and flavors are particularly attractive to youth.

But according to a new study from the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH), that law may have had the opposite effect. Analyses found that, after the ban’s implementation, high school students’ odds of smoking conventional cigarettes doubled in San Francisco’s school district relative to trends in districts without the ban, even when adjusting for individual demographics and other tobacco policies.

The study, published in JAMA Pediatrics on May 24, is believed to be the first to assess how complete flavor bans affect youth smoking habits.

“These findings suggest a need for caution,” said Abigail Friedman, the study’s author and an assistant professor of health policy at YSPH. “While neither smoking cigarettes nor vaping nicotine are safe per se, the bulk of current evidence indicates substantially greater harms from smoking, which is responsible for nearly one in five adult deaths annually. Even if it is well-intentioned, a law that increases youth smoking could pose a threat to public health.”

In other words: to “safeguard” people from addiction to a chemical that’s about as dangerous as caffeine, they drove people from a delivery system with minimal, largely edge-case dangers, to one that literally involves drawing concentrated air pollution into the lungs.

It’s almost too obvious to be a Berg’s Law: when you mix science and politics, you don’t get scientific politics; you get politicized science.

For Your Own Good

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Canigilia v. Strom is an extreme case, but if traditional Fourth Amendment precedent holds, Red Flag laws will also be held unconstitutional.

Joe Doakes

Forty years ago, the Second Amendment was on the brink of oblivion. A grassroots movement and a whole bunch of good lawyering and litigating fixed that, hopefully for good.

Hopefully we can do the same thing for the Fourth.

And if we’re going to save this Republic, the Tenth.

Un-Minnesotan

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Amateurs at work in the Southeast.  What a disgrace.  

You know that a group of hacker/terrorists shut down an oil pipeline.  As a result, there’s a shortage of fuel in North Carolina.  Their Governor issued an Emergency Order addressing the crisis to ensure everybody had enough fuel. 

How did he do it?  Ban all unnecessary travel?  Impose a state-wide curfew?  Confiscate personally owned vehicles?  Impose a $1,000 per gallon tax to prevent hoarding?  

No.  He lifted the load limits on fuel trucks bringing gas into the state.  Trucks can run heavier and haul more fuel during the emergency.  

He didn’t punish his citizens at all – what on Earth was he thinking?  Can you imagine Governor Walz missing an opportunity like that?  Unbelievable.  

Joe Doakes

Depriving “Big Karen” of the prerogative to chant “we’re all in this together”, with “this” meaning “some petty hardship foisted on us all, involving a set of rules of which I, Big Karen, am the custodian?”

Can I imagine Walz doing it?

What’s that, Joe? A rhetorical question?

Just When I’d About Given Up On The Fourth Amendent

A friend of the blog beat me to writing me about Caniglia v. Strom:

Monday May 17th the SCOTUS handed down a unanimous decision in Caniglia v. Strom, see:https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/20pdf/20-157_8mjp.pdf

Several things stand out about this decision; 

* first and most gratifying even the liberal judges on the SCOTUS would not support the extreme Biden administration and the gun grabbing Democrats, 

* second the opinions by Thomas, with Roberts, Breyer, Alito, and Kavenaugh concurring all provide ammunition to address and refute the Red Flag laws that are currently being considered by State legislatures and the US House, 

* and finally viewing the case timeline* before the court it is notable that The Gun Owners of America did the heavy lifting in amicus curiae briefs while the NRA was effectively MIA.

SCOTUSBlog has the timeline for the case.

I’d hoped this might be a preview of New York State Rifle And Pistol Association Vs. Corlett – and to some extent they might be, although I suspect Sotomayor, Kagan and Breyer will defect from the majority on those.

Degüello, Metaphorically Speaking

Question: Why did President Harris go so long on gun control at Biden’s “bedtime chat” the toher night?

Answer: Because Big Left may not get another chance at it, at least not via due process of law.

Americans are ditching gun control:

The number of Americans supporting enacting new gun laws over protecting gun rights fell from 57 percent to 50 percent, a seven-point drop from when the poll was last conducted in 2018. The number of Americans favoring gun rights jumped from 34 to 43 percent, a nine-point jump. The difference between the two positions narrowed by 16 points overall.

The sharpest decline in support for new gun-control measures came among 18 to 29-year-olds and Hispanics. Both groups saw a 20 percent drop. Rural Americans and strong conservatives saw a 17-point drop.

The downturn in gun-control support comes even after multiple high-profile mass shootings in Colorado, Indiana, and Georgia. The ABC/Washington Post poll is the second in as many weeks to show support for gun control waning. A Pew Research poll released on April 21 found the same seven-point drop in support for stricter gun laws.

The polling trend lends support to the idea new gun owners are beginning to change their attitudes on guns. The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents gun makers and dealers, estimated there were 8.4 million new gun owners in 2020. Since gun owners tend to oppose new gun-control measures at a higher rate than non-gun owners, the drop in polling support for new gun laws may be a result of those new gun owners changing their minds.

There’s a strong case to be made that gun rights are winning the culture war – we’ve talked about it before – and this stiudy is some fairly solid evidence toward the thesis.

That’s the good news.

Here’s the problem: when we’re on defense, gun owners and gun rights supporters are second to none. If every conservative constituency in the US were as diligent at organizing and wielding power as shooters, Congress would look like the North Dakota legislature – there wouldn’t be enough elected Democrats to staff their committee assignments. When there’s a threat, we turn out like an onslaught of biblical wrath.

But when times are good?

Most especially when Republicans – who are reliably pro-gun, and the few exceptions prove the rule – control Congress and our legislatures, we go back to “real life”. Which befits us, as (mostly) conservatives; we don’t want politics to be our daily grind. We have real lives.

But with the SCOTUS on the brink of taking on a case that could impose strict scrutiny on state gun control laws, we, the good guys, need to resolve to fight this thing through to its bitter conclusion, just as our grandparents and great-grandparents did in 1945 – until the war is over for good. Until there’s no doubt.

Until gun control is as dead as the slavery in which is was born.

No quarter. No compromise.

UPDATE: Well, that went to hell quickly.

Learning To Punch

Glenn “Instapundit” Reynolds has a recipe for fighting back against the woke cancel mob: “Never apologize, rally your friends, punch back harder“.

And it’s a good one:

This is what’s going on with the University of San Diego Law School, whose dean shamefully capitulated to an absurd student campaign against a professor who did nothing wrong. In a post on his personal blog, Professor Thomas Smith said that those who dismiss the possibility that the Wuhan coronavirus escaped from a lab there were “swallowing whole a set of Chinese” — and here he used an scatological phrase meaning, in effect, “balderdash.”

He was, of course, referring to the Chinese regime’s denials, which are facing growing scientific skepticism.

Asian students complained — preposterously — that this was somehow a racist slur against Chinese people, rather than a criticism of the brutal Communist regime. Rather than telling them that, as law students, they needed to work on their reading skills, Dean Robert Schapiro issued a craven response, suggesting that there was some basis to the complaints. In an e-mail to the law-school community, he charged Smith with “bias” and with using “offensive” language and announced an investigation.

But here’s where the story changes. Some of the most eminent faculty members at the law school — including such big names as Larry Alexander, Maimon Schwarzschild, Steve Smith, Chris Wonnell and Gail Heriot — fired back at Schapiro. They wrote: “We are concerned that treating these complaints the way you are doing validates student reactions and strained interpretations that are misguided, that reflect a lack of critical thinking and that will chill faculty members’ teaching and scholarship.”

The one problem – it depends on having friends to rally.

Oddly enough, in academia – which has become a “woke” gulag in the past few decades – conservatives may be better placed to fight back. As lopsided as things are in academia, there is at least a tradition of academic freedom to uphold, and groups like FIRE, with money and lawyers, to help do it.

But if you’re at a company that’s become infested with Wokies? Getting pressure to just shut up? Seeing dissenting thought shouted down around the water cooler? Seeing management starting to buckle?

Normals need to start organizing in the real world.

More on this tomorrow.

A Litmus Test

If you believe in anything America is supposed to be about, then the phrase “The Governor is giving permission for people to…” (fill in some normal thing, like gather in groups, hug their grandparents or go back to work) should be more offensive than snuff porn.

Should government be able to temporarily pause things under a state of emergency? Under some exceptional circumstances, with legally-defined exit criteria (y’know – like Florida has, and Minnesota doesn’t), it might be a lesser evil.

Advise people to modify their behavior for the community good, and sanction irresponsible behavior? Like in Florida or the Dakotas? Much better – where “perfect” is impossible.

But grant “permission?”

The phrase – which has been popping up in mainstream media with nauseating regularity – is an obscenity that must be fumigated from the American vocabulary.

The Walk

Our thorough discussion of Ryan Winkler’s tweet established that
Democrats have a strong personal belief, perhaps even a moral
conviction, that public safety is a government responsibility.

Our thorough discussion of the lawsuit against Minneapolis established
that when citizens suffer because government abandons its
responsibility, the citizens have no recourse under existing law.

You must rely on us; but you can’t rely on us. That’s Catch-22 and it’s
not a joke, it’s official policy.

So the obvious question is: When will Ryan Winkler introduce legislation
creating a right for citizens to sue the government for failing its
responsibility to protect them? And will the new law be retroactive to
cover the riots?

Ryan Winkler talked the talk, but will he walk the walk?

Joe Doakes

No point of Rep. Winkler’s career has been about “walking” any “walk”.

It’s been about pointing at others shortcomings, real or manufactured, and jumping up and down and pointing and flinging poo.

That should clarify things.

On The Offensive

Imagine this: you are walking through downtown…er, Brainerd. It’s dark out, with a tinge of fog in the air.

A car full of rural youth with mischief on their minds rolls up and jumps out. One has a gun, another a baseball bat. They are making loud, aggressive, rural-youth-y noises.

In a split second, you discern:

  1. Your life is in immediate danger
  2. They, not you, are the aggressors
  3. You being a middle-aged man or woman, and they being spry rural teens, you don’t reasonably have the means or opportunity to run away.

In a split second, you decide that your concealed handgun is the best way to resolve the situation – whether you shoot or not.

And after the episode is resolved – via the youths fleeing or, heaven forfend, violently – you call the police, lawyer up, and get ready for the process of proving to the prosecutor (if all goes well) or a court and jury (if it doesn’t) that your decision was correct.

Here’s where it gets complicated.

For the next several weeks a county attorney, sitting in a warm, safe office with a Keurig and stacks of law books and protected by metal detectors and deputies, working from the police report, will pick over the life-or-death decision you were forced, against your will, to make on a cold, dark, foggy night in Brainerd, with a grisly death potentially seconds away, to see if your attempt to flee was satisfactory enough under not only statute, but according to at least a dozen entries in Minnesota case law.

Your freedom for the next seven to life is at stake – to say nothing of your life’s savings, home, and your family’s future.

Seem reasonable?

If so – in what world? Seriously?

———-

Self-defense reform bills – SF 13 and HF131 – have been introduced in the House and Senate that would remove Minnesota’s ambiguous, legalistic and opaque “duty to retreat” requirement in self-defense situations – where the other criteria for self-defense (see the list above) are met.

They will NOT let people shoot people because they don’t like the way they looked at them.

They will NOT provide open season for the current usual cultural suspects (WhitesupremacistnazitransphobeKKKsciencedeniers) to kill people (indeed, in states with “Stand your Ground” laws, “people of color’ use them more often than white defendants – successfully).
There is literally no *rational* reason not to pass this measure into law. Reflexively chanting “Duty to retreat! Duty to retreat!” will earn you an invite to re-read the opening scenario.

If you’re in Minnesota, contact your legislator.  I imagine most of you know yours, but the MN Gun Owners Caucus tool above has a legislative contact tool that’ll find ’em in case yo don’t.  

It’s kind of nice to be on the offensive again, isn’t it?

(The bills are of purely intellectual interest to me of course – any firearms I may have owned fell into Mille Lacs last summer. And guns terrify me. I’d never own one again).

It’s Reform Time

Imagine this: you are walking through downtown…er, Brainerd. It’s dark out, with a tinge of fog in the air. A car full of rural youth with mischief on their minds rolls up and jumps out. One has a gun, another a baseball bat. They are making loud, rural-youth-y noises. In a split second, you discern:

  1. Your life is in immediate danger
  2. They, not you, are the aggressors
  3. You being a middle-aged man or woman, and they being spry rural teens, you don’t reasonably have the means or opportunity to run away.

In a split second, you decide that your concealed handgun is the best way to resolve the situation – whether you shoot or not.

And after the episode, you call the police, lawyer up, and get ready for the process of proving to the court that your decision was correct…

…during which time a county attorney, sitting in a warm, safe office with a Keurig and stacks of law books and protected by metal detectors and deputies, will pick over the life-or-death decision you were forced, against your will, to make on a cold, dark, foggy night in Brainerd, with a grisly death potentially seconds away, to see if your attempt to flee was satisfactory enough under not only statue, but according to at least a dozen items of Minnesota case law.

Seem reasonable?

If so – in what world? Seriously?

Turnabout

After a couple of sessions of playing on the defensive on gun rights, the good guys are going over to the attack.

A Self Defense Reform bill has been introduced at the MIinnesota State Legislature.

ACTION ALERT – STAND YOUR GROUND
BILLS INTRODUCED IN HOUSE & SENATE
Our Stand your Ground bill has been introduced in the Minnesota Senate by Senator Carrie Ruud (R – SD 10) as Senate File 13 (SF13) and in the Minnesota House by Representative Lisa Demuth (R – 13A) and Representative Matt Bliss (R – 5A) as House File 131.

This bill, known as Self-Defense Law Reform, or “Stand your Ground”, legislation simplifies Minnesota’s self-defense law by codifying the 10-12 court cases that interpret our existing statutory law while removing the ridiculous “duty to retreat” concept that requires Minnesotans to retreat from an attacker before defending themselves with force.

This is our Stand your Ground legislation with bill content honed by use of force and legal experts and backed by our years of advocacy experience.

Why propose the change to law? See the example above.

But why try to pass the bills now?

Future Math

You may ask yourself “Why? What’s the point? There’s a DFL governor, and the House is controlled by Melissa Hortman and Uncle Ryan Winkler?”

Think about it for a moment: the DFL lead in the House is pretty thin, and several of those DFLers are in distant suburbs that went for Trump, or are net-Red districts in normal times. And there’s history – in 2002, the gun rights movement pretty much extincted all the anti-gun DFLers, leading in short order to passage of Carry Permit reform in 2003. And that was at a time when the state wasn’t nearly as polarized on gun issues as it is today. And if Hortman causes the bills to be tabled in the House while it passes the Senate? That’ll be remembered in 2022.

And Governor Walz? If he vetoes such a bill, it’s going to be used as an electoral sledgehammer against every DFLer outside 494 and 694. And it’ll draw blood.

Turn Out

The MN Gun Owners Caucus runs an “Action Center” with info on contacting your legislators, as well as all the other things we can do to move the needle on this. Remember – Senate File 13, and House File 131.

Eventually the Legislature is going to get tired of replacing melted switchboards.

Greetings, New Absolutists!

I’d like to issue a hearty “welcome” to all of you “progressives” out there who, in view of Twitter’s wholesale de-platforming not only of President Trump but masses of fairly mainstream conservatives, have become zealots for property rights (private and corporate) and freedom of association.

Good for you! It’s a big step!

Now – you and your movement owe a bit of an apology to all those bakers, photographers and florists you’ve been legally harassing for the past decade.

But baby steps! You can do it!

Checked And Balanced

Yesterday, Joe Doakes’ piece lamented the MNGOP’s perceived indolence on Governor Klink’s one-man power.

Senator Dave Osmek responded:

Mitch: I must respond to the re-post you made earlier today from Joe.

Acquiescence is approval.” Recently, I have seen idiot lawn signs that say “White Silence equals White Racism”. I guess Joe believes that must be true too. Let’s all get our white hooded robes on! The Senate GOP has voted 6 times to rescind those “emergency” powers of TIm Jung Walz. That’s all we have. I guess if the 34 Senate Republicans (RIP: Jerry Relph) don’t strip naked, paint ourselves purple, and dance on top of the Capitol dome to protest enough, we just are a bunch of Quislings. Right? The Senate GOP has been trying, every month, to move the narrative and gotten zero Media pick-up. If the Media isn’t reporting on every breath of Walz propaganda, willfulling not asking hard questions, and laser-focused on the color of Kim Kardashian’s panties…they aren’t happy and are too busy to do their real jobs.

“Let the Democrats try to pass laws without a single Republican vote, until Walz relinquishes power to the Legislature, where it belongs.” Well, I have a little news for Joe: Tim Jong Walz is doing this NOW! Until the “emergency” powers are removed, he can pop out Executive Orders like a Pez dispenser, and he has. And the GOP senate…votes to remove the powers. Over and over again. Walz has written laws, and penalties to go with them. King Timmy can fine you and imprison you, with no actual law passed by the Legislature to back it up. And if we DON’T pass funding to help the victims of Walz (businesses and unemployed), who will get the blame? I guarantee you the Media would leap into gear and make sure EVERY person in Minnesota knows that the GOP Senate Grinches are responsible. Walz is responsible for this mess, but we have to try to help those businesses before they collapse because of Walz’s stupidity.

Otherwise, what do we need Republicans for? Just let Walz run everything forever and save the per diems.” Be careful what you ask for, Joe. Nobody is more frustrated than the 34 Senate GOP Republicans, infinitely more than even Joe is . The Constitution is being used as toilet paper. The Legislative branch has been relegated to the Children’s Table at the Christmas dinner. We continue to try. We tried to change the law at the end of the regular session. If Joe wants a dictatorship, disbanding the Legislative branch, good luck.

Elections have consequences.

Minnesota law grants the governor a lot of power – predicated on the antique notion that governors would be people of unshakable integrity and commitment to republican government.

Events have shown the naïveté of that conceit, and the need to guard against it.

In 2015, a bipartisan majority voted to bar the governor from confiscating firearms, closing gun stores, and other anti-gun measures under color of a “state of emergency”. It was signed into law, amazingly enough, by Gov. Dayton. Its perspicacity should be obvious.

And people who care about liberty and checks and balances are going to have to do the same in coming legislatures.

Probably not this one – the DFL in the House is addicted to their governor being able to rule like Francisco Franco.

No – in 2022, we need a GOP sweep of the legislature and the governor’s office.

Seems like a tall order. But if I didn’t believe in miracles, I wouldn’t be a conservative in Saint Paul.

Governor Mussolini

Governor Fredo bans the sale and most display of “hate symbols” like confederate flags and swastikas in New York.

Because he can, that’s why.

I mean, there’s that pesky First Amendment and all..

But noted First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams argues Cuomo may have a larger problem on his hands, extending beyond a quick “technical” fix. 

“Governor Cuomo is correct that the First Amendment may require changes in the law in light of the First Amendment. A private entity can choose to sell or not sell offensive symbols but when the government bans the sale of offensive, but constitutionally protected symbols, on its property the First Amendment comes into play,” Abrams told The Post.

A Cuomo spokesman said the governor’s legal team will be reviewing the bill in consultation with the state Legislature to make a possible amendment.

If we only protected speech everyone agreed with, we wouldn’t need a First Amendment.

Also – it appears Hammers and Sicles and “Che” t-shirts were untouched. #Unexpectedly.

Just Dropping By To Say…

…that if you call yourself an “ethicist” on the one hand, but on the other seek to deny people either a good or service for which they’ve paid, or perhaps to which they are entitled, directly or indirectly, because they exercised their right to free speech, you’re not actually an ethicist.

You’re a wanna-be Mussolini given a stage, at least for a while, by the misery of others.

Glad I could settle that.

Carry on.