California’s “assault weapons” ban was recently ruled unconstitutional, but in his war against the Second Amendment, Joe Biden wants to nationalize the California law.
Yesterday, I shared how Biden was laying the ground work for banning handguns by introducing new “stabilizing pistol brace” regulations that redefines handguns equipped with the accessory as “short barrel rifles,” a change that would subject handguns to heightened regulations under the 1934 National Firearms Act.
If successful, Biden’s new rule would make handguns equipped with such a brace illegal, requiring gun owners to either register them as rifles, forfeit them, or disassemble them. Failure to do so would subject them to being charged with a felony.
This new rule is the result of Biden’s anti-gun executive actions announced back in April when he officially directed the DOJ and ATF to create proposals to ban so-called ghost guns and pistol braces in the aftermath of mass shootings in Georgia and Colorado.
Though a long-time opponent of gun rights, the Colorado tragedy gave Biden an early opportunity to push a stack of Second Amendment-killing measures. In addition to ghost guns and pistol braces, he also went after so-called “assault weapons.”
“I don’t need to wait another minute, let alone an hour, to take common-sense steps that will save lives in the future,” he continued. “And to urge my colleagues in the House and Senate to act. We can ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in this country once again.
“That’s one of the best tools we have right now to prevent gun violence.”
Recently, a United States District Court ruled California’s assault weapons ban unconstitutional, but that hasn’t had any impact on Biden’s desire to nationalize such a ban.
U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez observed in his ruling that the outright prohibition of such firearms cannot pass constitutional muster. There are many reasons for his conclusion (via Reason.com):
California’s Assault Weapons Control Act (AWCA), which is similar to laws enforced by a handful of other states, originally applied to a list of more than 50 specific brands and models. In 1999 the law was amended to cover any semi-automatic, centerfire rifle that accepts a detachable magazine and has any of these features: a pistol grip that “protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon,” a forward pistol grip, a thumbhole stock, a folding or telescoping stock, a flash suppressor, or a grenade/flare launcher.
The rifles prohibited by the AWCA are among the most popular firearms sold in the United States. Nearly 20 million have been manufactured or imported during the last three decades.
As far as Benitez is concerned, that should be the end of the matter. In the landmark 2008 case that overturned the District of Columbia’s handgun ban, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment protects the right to own weapons “in common use” for “lawful purposes like self-defense”—a test that the rifles covered by California’s law clearly satisfy.
Although handguns are used to commit crimes far more often than “assault weapons,” the Court rejected the notion that a blanket ban on an entire category of firearms could be justified by the danger they pose in the hands of criminals. It also rejected the idea that such a ban could pass muster because it allowed people to use other kinds of firearms for self-defense. (emphasis mine)
Despite the clear and present danger Biden’s assault weapons ban presents to the Second Amendment, he believes that his anti-gun agenda is completely within the confines of the Constitution. After all, none of our rights are “absolute.”
“Nothing I’m about to recommend in any way impinges on the Second Amendment,” Biden said back in April. “They’re phony arguments suggesting these are Second Amendment rights at stake with what we’re talking about. But no amendment, no amendment to the Constitution is absolute.” (emphasis mine)
“So the idea is just bizarre to suggest that some of the things we’re recommending are contrary to the Constitution,” he added.
Still ahead in Uncle Joe’s war on gun rights is Extreme Risk Protection Orders (aka ERPOs and “red-flag” laws).
Included in Biden’s plethora of executive actions back in April was a proposal to create a template for states to pass their own versions of red flag laws, and he called for funding to provide incentives (bribe money) to states that pass them. He also called for legislation to nationalize the unconstitutional gun-grabbing legislation.
For the record, a nationalized red flag law has been on the radar screens of Sens. Lindsey Graham and Marco Rubio for years. In other words, there’s no difference between the parties when it comes to their failure to protect gun rights and the Constitution.
Biden once defended his anti-gun agenda by saying, “From the very beginning, you couldn’t own any weapon you wanted to own. From the very beginning of the Second Amendment existed [sic], certain people weren’t allowed to have weapons.”
Constitutionally ignorant, agenda-driven nonsense. In fact, it’s a flat-out lie, historically speaking.
I’ve shared this quote from Patrick Henry before, but it bears repeating (Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution, Jonathan Elliot, ed. 1836, vol. 3 p. 168):
“Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense?
Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress?
If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?”
Patrick Henry’s questions are just as relevant today as they were nearly 185 years ago.
Will Joe Biden succeed in his plan to nationalize California’s unconstitutional assault weapon ban, or will the Supreme Court do its job and defend our God-given, constitutionally protected rights?
I hope it’s the latter. But Washington has become a new axis of evil and enemy of liberty, so I’m not putting my faith in any branch of government when it comes to defending the Constitution.
David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative. He holds people of every political stripe accountable for their failure to uphold conservative values, and he promotes those values instead of political parties.