This page is adding just a few more final reader comments on this subject, received later than most.
Response to the contraversy surrounding the McDonald vs City of Chicago case has been considerable, and there are a number of site pages dealing with initial analysis followed by pages reproducing received email comments. Go to our page of links concerning the case, to catch up on all the articles.
“Like I said some time back in my reply to you good folks, I am a life member of the NRA because like a lot of fellows our Dads were also life members, but they NEED to get on board this train to GET RID OF ALL OPRESSIVE GUN LAWS, or get LEFT BEHIND. This issue is NOT going away by either side, and WE THE PEOPLE ARE DETERMINED TO WIN.
“ I liked Charlton Heston, but I like my AK-47 better. He was wrong. The NRA is very weak with regard to protecting our constitutional rights because of its own internal politics. Count me out unless they get a fire and brimstone leader that will take no prisoners.” Kc
“I will begin by saying that I am not Jewish. I realize this is not a requirement for membership in JFPO. I have a story to relate to you. I grew up at a time when Holocaust survivors were parents and grandparents of some of my friends. I had the honor of knowing people who wore the tatooed numbers on their forearms. I remember how fervent their patriotism was for this country and for the ideas on which it was founded.
When I was in college one of our guest speakers finished his talk on political science and the criminal justice system in general and said he wanted to talk about the 2nd Amendment. He said it would not be graded and anyone that wanted to leave could do so. He then related this story:
He bought a new house in a nice neighborhood. One day when he came home from work his neighbor approached and introduced himself. The neighbor mentioned seeing an NRA bumper sticker on the back of his car. The speaker was a supporter of the 2nd Amendment. He was prepared to debate it robustly especially when the man began by saying he didn't believe in guns and had never owned them. Before the speaker could say anything his neighbor asked if he could give him a check to send to the NRA. This caused the speaker to stumble since his neighbor had just said he didn't believe in guns. He asked why his neighbor didn't give directly to the NRA. He stated that he couldn't be a member because he was an immigrant and did not own any guns. The speaker said that anyone could join the NRA. He ended up getting him signed up as a life member that same day.
His neighbor was thrilled that he could be a supporter of the NRA. He and his wife both signed up for membership so in the NRA. While this man had no intention of ever owning a gun he wanted to make sure that others could so they would not every have to endure what he and his wife did in concentration camps.
Now I find myself reading that the NRA is using language of "reasonable" gun control. I don't find gun control reasonable! I am a life member of the NRA but they are conceding and bargaining away our rights while claiming to support them. A well regulated militia being necessary to a free state; the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. I don't see reasonable limitations or bargaining room in that right. If our rights are granted by G-d as the founders believed then the only limits on those rights must come from G-d not from the NRA, the Congress, the President, the ATF or any mere mortals!
Thank you for carrying on the mission of defending those rights! I regret that the younger people do not have the opportunity to meet people wearing crude tatoos on their forearms to remind them of just how quickly you can loose all your rights when you have no means to fight. Every Jew I knew was ashamed of those tatoos. I always saw them as badge of honor. Anyone who could survive such an attrocity and then come to the US to be free knew the true value of Freedom. I felt ashamed that I had never earned my freedom when so many had payed such a price for me to have them. This is why I served in the US Army. I wanted to earn my freedom and to never let another Holocaust happen on my watch!”
My Letter to the NRA - from Richard F
February 7th 2010
National Rifle Association
11250 Waples Mills Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
Dear Wayne LaPierre ,
“ I have been a member of the NRA for many years and will not renew my membership this year.
It was not the NRA that won the Heller case and now it is NOT the NRA that is taking the McDonald vs Chicago case to the SCOTUS. In fact, you've brought in Attorney Clements and horned in on the case at the last minute. And it is Clements in the Heller case who said that he believes:
"Given the unquestionable threat to public safety that unrestricted private firearm possession would entail, various categories of firearm-related regulations are permitted by the Second Amendment."
How does “shall not be infringed” somehow sneak past this guy’s obviously impressive intellect?
And another statement that infuriates me:
"Nothing in the Second Amendment, properly understood -- and certainly no principle necessary to decide this case --- calls for invalidation of numerous federal laws regulating firearms."
Justice Clarence Thomas was recently quoted as saying"
"Characteristics of a great lawyer: Lawyers need to be honest, conscientious, and thorough, but most important of all is credibility, Thomas said. "Your credibility is your calling card," he asserted. Reputations spread quickly, he warned. "We're way up there, but we have lunch. We talk."
What do you think these Supreme Court Justices will be thinking when Clements is now "defending" the God given Rights he apparently does not really believe in? Which time is he telling the whole truth? Or, what will Clements say to a Justice who asks: “When you were last before us on a gun control issue, you represented the United States Government. Do the arguments you made then apply now in this case?”
And all this argument time for Clements and the NRA is taking precious time away from Attorney Alan Gura, the real hero of Second Amendment Rights!
Then there is the BATF and their thuggery. The NRA has never gone after them. Now you have said you will not support Tenth Amendment groups. There appears to be no real fight in the NRA.... just words - words - words. So, so Sad.
I'll be supporting the GOA, JPFO and SAF!”
With regret, Richard F, Texas
Further addition ........ email received after sender had questioned NRA regarding this contraversy over Paul Clement. Below follows a copy of the reply letter from NRA . We draw particular attention to the last paragraph.
Dear Mr. C,
Thank you for your message about former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement's representation of the NRA in McDonald v. City of Chicago, which involves the question of whether the Second Amendment applies to the states.
The NRA chose Solicitor General Clement for oral argument in this case because he is one of the leading Supreme Court advocates of our time and has argued dozens of cases before the Court. In the case at hand, he represented 251 members of the U.S. House of Representatives and 58 U.S. Senators in filing an historic and very important friend of the court brief, which makes a strong and effective case in favor of incorporation. A link to this brief can be found here: http://www.nraila.org/media/PDFs/litigation/mcdonald_ac_congress..pdf
During oral argument, Solicitor General Clement will ensure that the Court hears all the arguments for applying the Second Amendment to the states under the Fourteenth Amendment. The Court could reach that result either through the Privileges or Immunities Clause (as the plaintiffs in the case have emphasized), or through the Due Process Clause (as the Supreme Court has chosen to apply nearly all of the other provisions of the Bill of Rights). The NRA's solitary goal in this case is to ensure that the Supreme Court applies the Second Amendment to all Americans throughout the country, no matter which method the Court chooses to use.
Obviously, we realize that Solicitor General Clement represented the federal government's position in District of Columbia v. Heller. In that case, the government took the position that the Second Amendment does protect a pre-existing individual right to keep and bear arms, but that the Court should apply an "intermediate" standard of review, less favorable to Second Amendment challenges to federal gun laws than the standard advocated by the NRA. On the standard of review issue, we disagreed with the government's position at the time and we still disagree with it.
However, it is critically important to remember that this position was the government's, not its lawyer's. At the time, Solicitor General Clement had a duty to represent the position of his client. Now that he is representing the NRA, just as when he was recently representing a bipartisan majority of Congress, he will strongly represent the interests of NRA members and all other Americans who believe the Second Amendment should apply equally throughout our nation.
NRA-ILA Grassroots Division