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Dan Gilmore / May 17, 2016

Ninth Circuit Court Affirms Second Amendment

Gun control via regulation is how anti-gunners are trying to curtail gun rights.

The Ninth Circuit Court — of all courts — affirmed that the Second Amendment cannot be infringed through some particular California regulation. The case dealt with the zoning regulations of Alameda County, California. Normally a tedious subject, the local government had used zoning regs to prevent any Liberty-minded entrepreneur from starting a gun store in the county that sits across the bay from San Francisco. Not only did a gun store need to sit at least 500 feet from a school, it had to sit 500 feet from any residential areas and places where alcohol was sold. In response, three entrepreneurs who wanted to start a gun store in the county sued. And the court ruled the “right of law-abiding citizens to keep and to bear arms is not a second-class right, subject to an entirely different body of rules than the other Bill of Rights guarantees.”

This ruling is notable because gun control via this sort of regulation is precisely how anti-gunners are trying to curtail the Second Amendment freedom. San Francisco successfully used regulation to shut down the city’s last gun shop a few months ago. In January, Obama said he was exploring ways to use his executive power to “reduce gun violence.” Recently, the Obama administration has used the Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization Act — a law designed to take down organized crime — to go after the lawyers and other partners in the payday loan industry. Both the payday loan and gun industries were targets of Obama’s Operation Choke Point, which makes some worry Obama will turn the Department of Justice into a political hit squad that will prosecute the gun industry on racketeering charges. (We know, that could never happen…) This ruling, at least in theory, should slow that strategy.

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