March 2008

Saturday, March 1st, 2008

 CCRKBA recently filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller. The brief calls upon the high court to affirm an appellate court ruling that the D.C. gun law prohibiting citizens from having handguns even in their own homes violates the Second Amendment individual right to keep and bear arms. “Our 53-page brief is tightly written,” noted CCRKBA Chairman Alan M. Gottlieb, “and it refutes contentions by the District and anti-gun rights organizations that the Second Amendment is written exclusively for the common defense, and only applies to military service. The brief, which can be read on our website at www.ccrkba.org, goes right to the heart of this case, and essentially dismantles every specious claim by anti-gunners about the intent of the Second Amendment.”

CCRKBA mourns the recent death of John Hosford, former CCRKBA Executive Director, and the longtime Resolutions Committee Chairman at the annual national Gun Rights Policy Conference. He died in his sleep at age 62 while visiting at his son’s home in Washington State. A retired police officer who served with the King County, Washington Sheriff’s Department, and a former Marine, Hosford served on the Board of Directors of the Washington Arms Collectors and chaired that organization’s legislative committee. After leaving CCRKBA, he worked for a time for the National Rifle Association in Washington, D.C. and then for the Law Enforcement Alliance of America. The family requests that donations to John’s memory be made to either CCRKBA or NRA.

CCRKBA staff reports that the Washington State House Judiciary Committee voted early last month to strip the state’s gun owners of the right to trial by jury. For nearly 50 years, state citizens have had the right to a jury trial with a standard of “clear, cogent and convincing evidence” before losing their right to bear arms due to being involuntarily committed for an alleged mental health illness. House Bill 3095, by Committee Chairwoman Pat Lantz, effectively removes these protections by stripping citizens of their right to bear arms, perhaps permanently, after being involuntarily committed for a mere 14 days. Taff said “it is inexcusable to deprive Washingtonians of the fundamental right to a jury trial and a reasonable standard of guilt.”

A major credit card company has issued a letter to a gun dealer, CDNN Sports Inc. of Abilene, Texas, canceling his payment processing services because of corporate concerns firearms were being sold to consumers in other states, in “a non face-to-face environment.” In reaction, the National Shooting Sports Foundation wrote to First Data Corporation, which operates Citi Merchant Services, that “your anti-gun corporate policy is based on ignorance of the law applicable to firearms…It is perfectly legal, in fact commonplace, for a federal firearms licensee in one state to sell a firearm to a non-licensee (consumer) from another state. What you fail to appreciate is that the firearm is not shipped in interstate commerce directly to the consumer. Rather, as required by federal law, the firearm is shipped by the selling licensee to another federal firearms licensee in the state of residence of the consumer…The consumer acquires the firearm from that licensed dealer in a face-to-face transaction.”

In Kentucky, State Rep. Bob Damron of Nicholasville and 60 cosponsors are behind his bill that would allow people who park their locked vehicles on public university property to keep a legally registered firearm in their vehicle. The bill, HB114, would require that universities, colleges and postsecondary institutions comply with current law in this regard. The University of Kentucky bans guns on campus. UK spokesman Jay Blanton said the University wants to retain its authority to set its policy. Rep. Damron said that, “I’ve heard two or three people who work at UK who are concerned that they’re in violation of UK policy because they keep a gun in their car for their public safety.