Tuesday, April 2, 2019

A Major Victory in California

Duncan v. Becerra, (S.D.Cal. 2019) struck down California's large capacity magazine ban for violating the Second Amendment.  It points to examples where victims with large capacity magazines successfully used them against multiple attackers and one where the victim had a low capacity magazine, and the other hand using a cellphone to call 911.  I've never been trained on how to change magazines without a free hand: have you?  A number of nice touches:
Individual liberty and freedom are not outmoded concepts. "The judiciary is — and is often the only — protector of individual rights that are at the heart of our democracy." -- Senator Ted Kennedy, Senate Hearing on the Nomination of Robert Bork, 1987.
The decision points to how rare mass murders are relative to other crimes:
Who has not heard about the Newtown, Connecticut, mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, or the one at a high school in Parkland, Florida? But an individual
victim gets little, if any, media attention, and the attention he or she gets is local and short-lived. For example, who has heard about the home invasion attack on Melinda Herman and her twin nine-year old daughters in Georgia only one month after the Sandy
Hook incident?15 Who has heard of the attacks on Ms. Zhu Chen or Ms. Gonzalez and her husband?16 Are the lives of these victims worth any less than those lost in a
mass shooting? Would their deaths be any less tragic? Unless there are a lot of individual victims together, the tragedy goes largely unnoticed.
And this little dig:
The magazine ban admits no exceptions, beyond those for law enforcement officers, armored truck guards, and movie stars. 
Quoting a decision calling a 10 round limit only a minor burden because there are other options:
Accordingly, a prohibition on possession of magazines having a capacity to accept
more than ten rounds applies only the most minor burden on the Second Amendment."). But describing as minor, the burden on responsible, law-abiding citizens who may not possess a 15-round magazine for self defense because there are other arms permitted with 10 or fewer rounds, is like saying that when government closes a Mormon church it is a minor burden because next door there is a Baptist church or a Hindu temple. 
Of course the 9th Circuit will hear the appeal, but Judge Reinhardt has recently been demoted to Hell, so who knows?  A great victory from my friend Chuck Michel.  The deeper I  read, the more impressed I get.  On appeal, California's argument is going to be reduced to "It's not fair!"


  1. Once the decision was handed down, the floodgates here in California opened up and everyone went nuts buying "standard capacity" magazines. They're sold out everywhere now. the Attorney General for CA is asking for a "Status Quo Stay" but the genie is already out of the bottle on this.

  2. What a wonderful victory! May many more such victories come our way, and it's likely to happen since President Trump has been putting HONEST judges on the bench, evening up the playing field that has been so tilted against us for so long!

    Who knows, perhaps even the 9th Circus Court of Clowns may end up rendering judgements that are within proximity of what the Constitution specifies. How great that would be!

    This Honorable Judge's opinion is sweeping, bold and well-researched; it will be very hard for the opposition forces to overturn it, as it's extremely well-reasoned & grounded in firm caselaw as well as Constitutional law. I found it delightful to read; it tells a clear story with plenty of examples.

    Here it is in pdf, read it and you'll see what I mean. Even the title is beautiful: "ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFFS’ MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT, DECLARING CALIFORNIA PENAL CODE § 32310 UNCONSTITUTIONAL and ENJOINING ENFORCEMENT" That's music to my eyes!