GunFreedomRadio EP203 The Ameri-CAN Series: Freedom's Survival Guide with Frank Miniter
We are doing a series called Ameri-CAN. Talking about the CAN-DO spirit that is part of our American DNA. So much about our lives has been turned upside down by this Corona Virus / Covid-19, and we have been hearing a lot about what we CAN’T do and where we CAN’T go, but our guests during this series are going to talk to us about their area of expertise and all of the ways we still CAN learn and grow, train, connect, and expand our freedoms in ways we maybe haven’t thought about before.
Our guest today is Frank Miniter. Frank is an author and investigative journalist with a penchant for outdoor adventure. Frank is the Editor in Chief of NRA's America's 1st Freedom, a frequent guest on major news media outlets, a Field Editor for the NRA’s American Hunter, and the author of The New York Times’ Bestseller The Ultimate Man’s Survival Guide—Recovering the Lost Art of Manhood. Miniter’s other books include The Politically Incorrect Guide to Hunting, Saving the Bill of Rights, and The Future of the Gun.
1) Learning more about taking control of our lives and our Rights is such a great way to empower people during this time when so much has been out of our control. One side says that freedom itself is under attack, the other side says we are just fear mongering to “sell more guns”. If we don’t even know what the Founding Principles of our nation are, how do people sort out the truth from the noise?
2) The Second Amendment is not a political issue, but the politicians have MADE it political. Especially in the upcoming 2020 election with every one of the Democratic Presidential hopefuls trying to out-anti-gun one another. And now, Joe Biden appears to be the best they have for the Democratic Presidential bid. For people who value their 2A Rights, is there any way they could vote for Biden and not lose their Constitutionally-protected rights to keep and bear arms?
- Biden then says that he would repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), so that gun makers and dealers can again be sued because someone used a legally purchased firearm to commit a crime. This is like allowing people to sue GM if, say, someone used a Chevy to harm someone else.
3) It is confusing to people to understand how our Bill of Rights protects our 2A rights yet various states can trample those rights. You wrote an article a couple of months ago titled “Barriers to Freedom” where you talk about this tension between federal and states’ rights. Can you speak to the premise of your article and specifically the ideas behind federal reciprocity legislation?
- All of this state-by-state policy diversity is mostly a healthy thing as long as local governments don’t infringe on a right that’s specifically protected in the U.S. Bill of Rights. America’s complex legal patchwork of laws places an immense burden on individual gun owners. Making a mistake can lead to a felony conviction, lengthy jail time and a lifetime loss of a person’s gun rights; as a result, we must know every law and be aware of the discretion local authorities have and how they use that discretion before we travel. It shouldn’t be this complicated. We should be able to carry firearms for personal protection around this great nation. The Second Amendment should be enough of a legal remedy to protect us as we do. One way to resolve this legalistic gauntlet is for Congress to pass, and for a president to sign, federal reciprocity legislation. To protect gun owners and allow people to universally exercise their fundamental rights, the NRA continues to lobby for such legislation.
4) More and more often it seems the American People are looking to the Supreme Court to weigh out the major issues that have become so polluted by politics. The 2A is among those issues. We recently heard that SCOTUS passed by an opportunity to hear a case out of NY. That has some of the anti-gun groups feeling confident that by default that means they are winning. But, you have written about the possibility of a few other cases making their way to be ruled on by SCOTUS. What can you tell us about those cases?
- The cases currently being considered for possible hearing by the court, on the other hand, concern laws that more broadly affect the gun-owning population. Cases like Wilson v. Cook County, Illinois and Worman v. Healey directly challenge bans on popular and commonly owned semi-automatic rifles and magazines—Heller specifically protects “commonly owned” firearms. Another case, Rogers v. Grewal, challenges laws preventing law-abiding citizens from carrying a firearm outside their home for self-defense. This takes on the “special need” requirement that places like New Jersey and California use to deny citizens their basic Second Amendment rights. And then there’s Pena v. Horan, which challenges California’s “Unsafe Handgun Act,” a law that implicates the Second Amendment by effectively banning commonly owned handguns.