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About once a month, Dave Kopel produces a free e-mail Newsletter containing short summaries and links to important new research and writing involving the Second Amendment and firearms policy. The newsletter also reports on Kopel's latest writing.

The content of this newsletter is produced by the Second Amendment Project at the Independence Institute, a think tank in Golden, Colorado. The newsletter is electronically distributed by the Second Amendment Foundation in Bellevue, Washington. Thus, the Second Amendment Foundation will be given your e-mail address.

Archive of past issues.

Second Amendment Project Newsletter. Aug. 30, 2001.
The Second Amendment Project is based at the Independence 
Institute, a free-market think tank in Golden, Colorado. 
http://independenceinstitute.org 
 

Table of contents for this issue:
 
1. New Kopel articles: Andrea Yates child murders. FBI 
abuses a journalist. Do guns cost society $100 billion annually?
UN and European Union get ready to tax the Internet.
 
2. Janet Reno's Trip Tik. Satire, by Jim Jorgensen, 
National Association of Treasury Agents
 

3. The Fifth Auxiliary Right.

By Lorne Gunter
 
4. Bad stat of the Month: "Million" Mom March
still can't count.
 
5. Links
 

1. New Kopel articles
 
a. Political Science. The National Academy of Sciences
gears up for a biased anti-gun "study."
National Review Online. Aug. 29, 2001
http://www.nationalreview.com/kopel/kopel082901.shtml 
 
 
b. Bigotry of Low Expectations

Double standards for parent murderers.
The Andrea Yates case.
National Review Online. Aug. 28, 2001

"Which organization is really pro-child: the National

Organization for Women, which supports women who kill

their children, or the National Rifle Association,

which supports women who protect their children?
http://www.nationalreview.com/kopel/kopel082801.shtml

 

c. Redefining Justice. Free Vanessa Leggett.

Abusive FBI throws a journalist in jail.

National Review Online. Aug. 27, 2001.

With Paul Blackman

http://www.nationalreview.com/kopel/kopel082701.shtml

 

d. $100 Billion Mistake. Loose factoids sink books.

Review of Gun Violence: The Real Costs

By Philip J. Cook and Jens Ludwig

NRO Weekend, Aug. 25-26, 2001.

With Paul Blackman.

http://www.nationalreview.com/weekend

/books/books-kopel082501.shtml

 

e. Globaltaxation.Gov.U.N. and EU gearing up to regulate the Internet.

National Review Online. Aug. 24, 2001. With Jennifer Holder

http://www.nationalreview.com/kopel/kopel082401.shtml 

 
========================
2. As I See It...

by Jim Jorgensen

NATA Dep. Exec. Dir.

JANET'S TRIP TIK

Originally published in "The Agent," the

quarterly magazine of the National Association of

Treasury Agents, an independent organization

for law enforcement employees of Treasury agencies.

http://members.aol.com/ustresagt/index.html

Former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno's

brother-in-law, Jim Hurchalla, recently bought

her a used red Ford Ranger pickup truck to make the
cross-country tour she's long promised to take

upon leaving office. Rather than have Ms. Reno

waste time and money at AAA, we've prepared the

following Trip Tik for her:

Stop 1 - On your way out of Washington, D.C., stop

by the Secret Service HQ. Thank various bureaucrats

for their assistance in helping your valiant, but
unsuccessful attempt at contriving a new executive

privilege for then-President Bill Clinton, who at

the time was scurrying to obstruct justice in a

civil rights suit in which he was the defendant

(Jones v. Clinton).

Stop 2 - After crossing the Potomac River into

Virginia, visit Fort Marcey National Park where

you authorized that crack investigative organization,
the U.S. Park Police, to investigate the "suicide"

of Presidential counselor Vincent Foster.

Stop 3 - Continuing westbound, visit Clinton,

Mississippi, corporate HQ for Worldcom, Inc.,

which, until your DOJ trustbusters got into the

act, was a high tech company providing a real

product and service. Before your involvement

Worldcom traded at +$80. Today, it's at $13.

Stop 4 - Now, it's on to Arkansas. The sites

here are just too numerous to mention. Don't

miss the village of Hope where draft-dodger

Bill Clinton scammed both his Selective Service

Board and the Arkansas National Guard.
Another highlight is the undeveloped rural tract

known as "Whitewater." The exact location may be

hard to find, but you can ask directions of the 14
convicted "Whitewater" felons you so desperately

tried to protect.

Stop 5 - Leaving the great state of Arkansas,

It's on to Los Alamos, New Mexico. Remember how

your minions hamstrung the FBI's stolen nuclear
secrets investigation? You probably won't want

to linger here too long!

Stop 6 - Next, check out the site of the former

Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Do you ever wonder whether the Waco decisions you
made two years prior to the bombing were the right

ones? Think about all the innocent children and

Federal workers who died here.

Stop 7 - This stop will probably be the highlight

of your trip. Visit Waco, Texas. Please pause at

least a few moments to reflect on what you did (or
didn't do) and all the innocent kids who perished here.

Stop 8 - Continuing to the West Coast, stop in

Los Angeles for a tour of the ATF offices. Ask

them to show you the spot where distraught ATF special
agent Nathaniel Medrano committed suicide. You

probably don't even remember him. He was the fifth

ATF Waco fatality.

Stop 9 - Traveling up the beautiful coast, spend

a couple days in San Francisco. Try to find the

Buddhist temple where defeated Presidential
candidate Al Gore didn't know he was having a

fund-raiser. See the exact spot where convicted

felon fund-raiser Maria Hsia greeted Al when he arrived
for the fund-raiser.

Stop 10 - Then, it's on to Seattle for a peek

at Microsoft, Inc. HQ. Remember when the NASDQ

was above 3000? Many attribute its current low
level to your trustbusters who dragged Microsoft

through the mud. . . and the courts. Nice going!

Notice what's happening on appeal?

Stop 11 - It's time to start heading back. Go

just a bit eastbound and visit Ruby Ridge, Idaho.

Visit the Randy Weaver family which got more than
$3 million from your DOJ. Not admitting any

government wrong-doing was a real nice touch.

Don't forget to stop by Vicki Weaver's grave

site. How old is that daughter she was holding

when the FBI sniper killed her?

Stop 12 - Still heading eastbound, don't miss

the Pine Ridge Indian reservation in South Dakota.

See the spot where Leonard Peltier executed
two wounded FBI agents. Consider how your boss's
proposed pardon of this stone-cold killer affected

all of the living Federal agents you used to
command.

Stop 13 - Well, it's back home to Florida. Two

stops here are important. First, visit Little

Havana to see the modest home where you authorized

SWAT team tactics so a little kid could be

returned to a life of slavery. You were afraid

you were going to lose in court. Weren't you?

Then, re-visit the offices of the Dade County

Prosecutor where you did some of your "finest" work.

Oh. . . .did we tell you? Those knee-jerk,
politically-correct child molester convictions

from which you got so much good press. . . .well

. . . . they've been overturned.

Hope you had a nice trip. We didn't!

------------------------

Asked how non-agents could support NATA's work,

Jim Jorgensen replied:

The best thing non-agents can do is to "adopt"

a Federal agent. By that I mean seeking out

and really getting to know and befriend an active duty
Federal officer. One of the greatest perils to

our continuing democracy is the increasing

parochialism and marginalization of law enforcement

officers.
 

They are under relentless attack and are prone

to "circle the wagons" at the least provocation.

This insular posture can lead to real mischief and
tragedy. Law enforcement officers live all around

us, but rarely have friends outside law enforcement

circles. "Adopting" an officer can correct
this. If approached sincerely and tactfully, both

the "adopted" officer and the "adoptee" will come

away with a new found respect and understanding for
each other's concerns and problems. That would be

healthy for our continued freedoms! 


========================

The Fifth Auxiliary Right

An introduction of Dr. Gary Mauser

By Lorne Gunter

Columnist, The Edmonton Journal

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/
Editorial Board Member, The National Post

http://www.nationalpost.com/

 

On the occasion of Dr. Mauser's speech to the

Teaching Liberty series

The Fairmont Hotel Macdonald, Edmonton

Wednesday 15 August 2001

 

The right of law-abiding citizens to own firearms

for recreation and even for self-protection is

referred by some academics as "the fifth auxiliary

right." That doesn't sound too impressive, until

you consider what the first through forth auxiliary

rights are.

 

The term refers to Sir William Blackstone's

18th-Century Commentaries on the Laws of England,

the closest thing the British have to a written

constitution.

 

Blackstone identified three absolute rights:

 

The right to personal liberty, including freedom
of movement, action and thought;

the right to personal security, which included an

undiluted right to self-defence, up to and including

the right to kill anyone (including an agent of the

King) discovered in your home or on your land after

dark, with or without a warrant; and

the right to own and enjoy property.

 

As Blackstone explained, to "protect and maintain"

these absolute rights, English law recognized five

auxiliary rights:

 

a parliament,

limitations on the King's prerogative,

due process of law,

the right of petition to Parliament or the King, and

the right to bear arms.

 

When you consider the significance of the other four

auxiliary rights, it doesn't seem quite so insignificant

that the right to own firearms is the fifth auxiliary

right. That's actually pretty impressive company to keep.

 

In the defence of our liberty, our property and our

personal security, the right to own a fire arm ranks

right up there with the having a parliament, with

constitutional limits on the monarch and with due

process of law.

 

The right to bear arms is not some American creation.

Blackstone was identifying rights that he called ancient

because many of them had existed since long before

reliable accounts of the common law. These were rights

we as Canadians were meant to inherit because of our

common-law tradition.

 

Imagine the reaction if it were suggested that Canada

could still be free if we did away with freely elected

houses of assembly. Or if we reinstated the divine right

of kings to rule as absolute monarchs.

 

What would be the reaction if it were suggested that

governments should have the right to round up and

summarily execute anyone they wished -- no due process?

There would be an outcry, an entirely justifiable outcry,

that our democracy was at risk.

 

And what if the government tried to suspend Parliament

or cancel elections? Newspapers and magazines would be

full of articles about how we could no longer be guaranteed

our freedoms. Television newscasts would be crammed from

beginning to end with coverage of riots should our

leaders move to restore the absolute monarchy. Some

interviewee would surely call it a dictatorship –

and he would surely be right.

 

So where is the outrage at the federal governments

slow-burn to confiscation of law-abiding Canadians'

firearms? Whereas a proposal to eliminate any of the

other auxiliary rights would be met with howls and

derision, the threat to responsible firearms ownership

is met with applause. Yet the fifth auxiliary right is

the only auxiliary right facing a true, immediate threat.

That is upon us. It's not some airy-fairy hypothetical,

future-scare scenario. And it is encouraged by our elites,

rather than resisted, because in their ivory tower,

champagne and brie world, they cannot see the danger

to our freedom.

 

Just as the road to hell is paved with good intentions,

the road to serfdom is paved with inattention.

 

If we do march blindly into the dark night of tyranny,

don't blame our first guest. Dr. Gary Mauser has done

more than any other academic in the country, and near

as much as any other Canadian, with the exception of

our own Dave Tomlinson, to awaken Canadians to the

futility and ultimate destructiveness of crusades to

control the ownership of guns by law-abiding citizens.

 

He may not know this, but I credit him with helping

make me as smart as I am on this subject. (Now he may

not want to know this.) I will not claim to ever having

been a big supporter of gun control. But it was a subject

to which I had given little thought, so like most

Canadians, and nearly all Liberal cabinet ministers,

my opinions were ill-informed to the point of being

ignorant. And in my ill-informed ignorance, I thought,

"Okay, controlling the ownership and use of guns will

probably reduce crime. At least it couldn't hurt."

 

At a time when it would have been so easy for him personally

as well as professionally, to ignore the gun debate, Gary

Mauser jumped into instead -- up to his neck. His work in

the early 1990s helped convince me that civilian gun control,

like most other big-state ideas, has the exact opposite of

the desired effect. If the statists promised it would reduce

crime, it surely would increase it.

 

Prof. Mauser did some of the earliest empirical research

on the use of firearms in crimes in Canada. His work

helped debunk the myth that most criminal firearms were

originally sloppily stored legal firearms that were stolen

for use in hold-ups and murders.

 

He has worked with the American scholar and gun rights

advocate David Kopel on the influential essay "Sorry Wrong

Number: Why media polls on gun control are often unreliable."

http://www.saf.org/pub/rkba/books/jfp6ch02.txt

 

He has written on armed self-defence from the

Canadian perspective, authored a 1995 Fraser Institute

paper that I still have on file, entitled "Gun Control

is not Crime Control."

http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/publications/

critical_issues/1995/gun/index.html 

 

He has testified before the Commons Justice and

Legal Affairs Committee on Bill C-68, done phenomenal

work with his friend and sociologist Taylor Buckner,

on the public's real attitudes towards gun control, in the 1997

Mackenzie Institute paper "Canadians Attitudes Toward

Gun Control: The real story."

http://falcon.usask.ca/pub/cdn-firearms/Buckner/GUNCOVER.htm

 

And most recently, again for Fraser, he wrote

"Misfire: Firearm registration in Canada,"

http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/publications/pps/48/index.html

a thorough critique of the Canadian Firearms Centre

and its mission.

 

Ladies and gentlemen, please join me in welcoming a

fine man and one of the staunchest defenders of the

fifth auxiliary right, Prof. Gary Mauser.


4. Bad Stat of the Month
 
"The gun lobby has been talking for 40 minutes. 
During that time, 40 people have died from the 
use of small arms and light weapons in this country." 
(Mary Leigh Blek, Million Mom March, speaking at 
the United Nations Conference on the Illicit Trade 
in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All its Aspects, Jul. 17).
 
Really? One death per minute would result in a 
whopping 525,600 deaths per year. The actual number of 
deaths from firearm injuries (homicide, suicide and
accident) in 1998 was 30,708. Ms. Blek's figure is 
off by about 1700 percent.
 
--Statistical Assessment Service
http://www.stats.org/newsletters/0108/guns.htm 
 

5. Links
 
a. Self-defense:
 
Concealed weapons law is praised
Associated Press, in The State 
(South Carolina's largest newspaper)
"When the state's concealed weapons law was passed in 1996, 
critics feared gunslingers would be strolling the streets of South 
Carolina, but authorities say the program has worked effectively…."
http://web.thestate.com/content/
columbia/2001/08/25/local/conceal25.htm
 
Gun News You Never See
New York Post
Monday, August 6, 2001
http://www.nypost.com/postopinion/opedcolumnists/36733.htm
 
Man in San Francisco wrests gun away from criminals planning
on murdering children.
Man is arrested for violating parole condition against
possessing firearms
"S.F. loft intruders killed by own gun. 
SoMa resident, friend shoot robbers" 
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE. 16 August 2001.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/
article.cgi?file=/c/a/2001/08/16/MN41736.DTL

"SoMa loft hero held on parole violation. 
Taking intruder's gun broke rules" 
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE. 17 August 2001.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/
article.cgi?file=/c/a/2001/08/17/MN229399.DTL

A grandma with a pistol in her purse

By Lane Hartill. Christian Science Monitor

Aug. 22, 2001

"Patrick Langan, a statistician for the Justice Department's 
National Crime Victimization Study [sic, Survey], found that 
defending against rape, robbery, or assault, guns help 
65 percent of the time and make things worse about 9 percent of
the time."
http://www.christiansciencemonitor.com/
2001/0822/p14s1-lihc.html
 
 
b. Gun rights websites: 
 
Direct Action
Website of Marylanders for the Preservation 
of Firearms Ownership
http://www.direct-action.org 

Women Against Gun Control

www.wagc.com

Democrats for the Second Amendment

www.d2a.org

Pink Pistols

"There are now over 20 Pink Pistols chapters nationwide, and more are starting up every day. We are dedicated to the legal, safe, and responsible use of firearms for self-defense of the sexual-minority community."

www.pinkpistols.org

Black Man With a Gun

Kenneth V. Blanchard's website

blackmanwithagun.net

c. Terrorism:
 

Gun prohibitionist Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy

applauds a gun-wielding Irish Republican Army terrorist who

was convicted of murder.

Are guns bad when used for home protection

in America, but not when used for political killing

in Ireland?

By Jaime Sneider, NRO
August 17, 2001

http://www.nationalreview.com/
nr_comment/nr_comment081701a.shtml 
 
Coming to Terms (or Not) with Waco
Alan Bock. WorldNet Daily. Aug. 24, 2001
New evidence that Danforth Commission tests were
a deliberate fraud.

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=24196

d. History:

Machine guns predate the Second Amendment.

The story of the Puckle Gun.

http://www.saf.org/pub/rkba/news/PuckleGun.htm

 
"Marion Pritchard:
She shot a Nazi to save Jewish children"

US News and World Report
20 August 2001. By Samantha Levine

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/

issue/010820/heroes/pritchard.htm

New Views of the Constitution of the United States

by John Taylor of Caroline

Taylor is considered a leading proponent of the strict

constructionist views of Jefferson and Madison.

http://www.constitution.org/jt/jtnvc.htm

 

e. Law:

Jurist: The Legal Education Network

"Gun Laws, Gun Control & Gun Rights" web "resource for individuals

on all sides in the ongoing controversy over the legal status of guns

in the United States."

http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/gunlaw.htm

Shot Full of Holes

Deconstructing John Ashcroft's Second Amendment

Violence Policy Center. Aug. 2001

http://www.vpc.org/studies/ashcont.htm

Stephen Halbrook's response to

VPC's anti-Ashcroft article.

http://www.nraila.org/media/misc/halbrookresp.htm

Gun suits seek to end private ownership
by Don Feder (8/15)
"The California Supreme Court deserves a 21-gun salute for its profound wisdom in throwing out a suit against gun-makers last week."

http://www.townhall.com/columnists/donfeder/df20010815.shtml
 
 
Judge orders city to pay NRA for legal fees in gun show case
Arizona Daily Star. Tucson, Arizona 
Tuesday, 7 August 2001
http://www.azstarnet.com/star/today/10807GUNFEES.html

United States v. Laskie, 9th Circuit.

Unanimous three-judge panel rules that a

restoration of civil rights under federal law

includes right to arms, unless "expressly" not

restored.

http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data2/circs/9th/0010437p.pdf

U.S. v. Osborne, 5th Circuit.
Same result as the Laskie case above.
The underlying "felony" was driving into Mexico with five
rounds of ammunition which the driver's friends forgotten to
remove from the car.
http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/pub/00/00-10862-cr0.htm
 
Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy tells a group of
students that lower courts are "just
beginning" 2d Amendment jurisprudence and it will be
"some years" before the Supreme Court gets involved.
Responding to a question about whether the 2d Amendment
is "obsolete," he warns against ignoring parts of the
Constitution. 
The event was broadcast on C-Span on August 25. 
You can listen in RealAudio.

http://www.cspan.org/courts/

Partial transcript:

http://www.saf.org/pub/rkba/Legal/KennedyCSPAN.htm

Stillwell v. Stilwell, 2001 WL 862620

Tenn. App., July 30

http://www.tsc.state.tn.us/PDF/tca/013/stillwellk.pdf

"The second issue on appeal is the propriety of the Trial Court's prohibiting Father from carrying a weapon in the presence of the child and ordering

that all guns be locked up when Father is exercising visitation. . . .
Additionally, we believe the constitutional rights under the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution as well as Article I, Section 26 of the Tennessee Constitution are worthy of the same protection as is the constitutional right to privacy discussed inHawk. Accordingly, the Trial Court could not restrict Father's otherwise lawful possession of a firearm absent a showing of risk of substantial harm to the child."

 

f. Politics. Check out Glenn Reynolds' new weblog, InstaPundit.com

The August 28 & 29 entries detail how the Atlanta Journal-

Constitution ran an on-line reader poll to see if .50

caliber rifles should be banned. When the poll results

were overwhelmingly pro-freedom, the AJC removed the poll,

with no acknowledgement that it had ever existed.


Some pages you may want to visit at the award-winning

Independence Institute website:

Criminal Justice and the Second Amendment:

http://i2i.org/crimjust.htm

Kopel short articles: http://davekopel.org 

The Columbine High School murders:

http://i2i.org/suptdocs/crime/columbine.htm 

The Waco murders: http://i2i.org/Waco.htm

The Independence Institute's on-line bookstore. Start your

browsing at the Second Amendment section:

http://i2i.org/book.htm#Second

That's all folks!

 

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