My Response to Dick Metcalfe’s Questions

Bitter has had her say about Dick Metcalfe’s response, and now I’m going to address the questioned he asked for those who disagreed with many aspects of his article.

Difficult as it may be for some to believe, To those who have expressed their vigorous opposition to the content of the December column (and to my continued existence on this planet), I would pose these questions:

1. If you believe the 2nd Amendment should be subject to no regulation at all, do you therefore believe all laws prohibiting convicted violent repeat criminals from having guns are unconstitutional? Should all such laws be repealed?

Do I believe the courts will hold them as constitutional? Or do I personally think they are unconstitutional? There are a lot of things I think the courts should do that they won’t, because our courts are often more concerned with not upsetting legislative and precedential apple carts than they are about fealty to the Constitution. My personal belief is that the law as currently structured is unconstitutional, but because it violates 5th or 14th Amendment due process rights rather than violating the Second Amendment directly. Congress and States could pass a prohibition on firearms as part of sentencing for certain crimes. I even think some misdemeanors could come with temporary prohibitions as part of a sentence for a crime. But criminal defendants should know what’s on the line when they accept a plea or go to trial. Retroactively going back and suggesting that anyone convicted of X has now been stripped of their right to bear arms ought to be a violation of their due process rights.

2. Do you also believe all laws establishing concealed-carry licenses are unconstitutional?

I believe that fundamental rights should not be subject to licensing by the government. If the courts had real courage they’d toss every single state licensing requirement for ownership or carrying of firearms out the window. But they won’t, because we already lost that battle when the Court discovered marrying was a fundamental right, but nonetheless subject to licensing by the state. I actually think licensing carry is more odious to the Constitution than licensing ownership, because people don’t generally change residences all that often, but I might want to carry in 5 different states in a day under normal and regular circumstances. Nonetheless, I fully expect the courts will endorse licensing of gun ownership and carry. If we’re exceedingly lucky, the courts will rule that state officials can’t exercise much discretion over who gets one. It’ll take less, but still a large amount of luck to get the courts to rule that states can’t require applicants to articulate a justifiable need. Most likely, I think, is the courts will bend over backwards to maintain the status quo in regards to carry laws.

3. Do you have a concealed-carry license anyway?

Yes, because I want to be able to carry, and even if I didn’t, I’d have one anyway because my state makes even unloaded carry of a handgun in a vehicle legally problematic if you don’t. Yes, I’d rather not go to jail.

4. Are you thereby violating the Constitution yourself?

Who even argues this? I think DUI checkpoints ought to be unconstitutional too, but does that doesn’t mean I’m violating the Constitution every time I decide to pull over one rather than run down the cops, or getting in a high speed chase with them? The Constitution is meant to restrain government, not private behavior. If they want to put up hoops between me and my rights, it’s up to me to decide whether or not I want to jump through them. Like Bitter mentioned, I think this hits to the root of what people are upset about. It’s not that he tried to open a discussion, it’s more than he doesn’t even understand the framework through which rights theoretically function. Readers and advertisers of Guns & Ammo have simply decided that this is unacceptable in today’s climate.

25 thoughts on “My Response to Dick Metcalfe’s Questions”

  1. “4. Are you thereby violating the Constitution yourself?”

    OK this guy is a moron. So he thinks we should violate those laws, or else we’re agreeing with them? Is that it? It sounds like he’s just trying to stir up trouble.

    1. He’s trying to turn around the blame knowing he’s got no leg to stand on. He’s in full defensive mode and is flailing around looking for something/anything to hold on to.

    2. Bloody Hell. No, I think the STATE is violating MY Constitutional rights by requiring me to get one, but I am not prepared to pull a “civil disobedience” play on something that is a felony that would forever prohibit me from keeping OR bearing arms! The rpice is simply to high for me to risk NOT complying.

      The essence of civil disobedience is the willingness to pay the full price the law inflicts if necessary to highlight your cause, otherwise you’re just a whiny, over-priviledged brat PRETENDED to be a civil rights activist!

  2. The Constitution is meant to restrain government, not private behavior.

    So, so true. And so poorly understood.

    1. I started wondering about that afterward. Can an individual even violate a Constitutional Amendment in the first place, since it’s not aimed at them?

      1. Yes. You can violate the 13th Amendment if you hold someone in slavery. But that’s the only constitutional provision I can think of which describes a crime directly, rather than merely acknowledging a crime that predates the Constitution, like Treason or Piracy.

        1. Actually, slavery can only be committed by the state. It is the legal approval of bondage. Illegal Detention, etc., are crimes, but slavery implies state legality.

          1. “slavery can only be committed by the state.”

            Those of us who did involuntary servitude during the Vietnam Era will attest to that!

            (Great reflection for Veterans Day!)

            1. Thank you for your service, Andy B.!!!

              A missionary spoke in this moning’s service (this very morning!) that a Vietnamese pastor he serves with said to pass on his thanks to every American veteran of that war his deepest gratitude. He said the twelve years you held off communist dictatorship allowed the Gospel to get a toe hold that has grown to reach literally hundreds of thousands of his countrymen.

              I suspect that is meager solace for the great sacrifices you and your comrades made during your forced service there, but I hope you’ll find some consolation in the knowledge that your suffering was not totally in vain.

              You are a hero in my eyes, sir! Thank you again!

              Sincerely, Arnie

    2. Yep there are so many that have claimed that he and Zumbo’s ill fates were in fact people putting the 2nd Amendment over the 1st.

      Except its their first amendment to say what they want, and its Guns and Ammo, and outdoor channel’s 1st Amendment right not to put messages that are poisonous to their products on THEIR media.

      Further its advertisers right’s to approve where their product placements are put.

  3. He doesn’t want to admit that he wasn’t fired for voicing his opinion, but because his opinion was so uninformed and ignorant that no one could take him seriously any longer.

  4. “convicted violent repeat criminals” – Why aren’t they in prison where they belong?

    1. He’s from the time when gun rights groups were holding back the tide of gun bans, and a politician dressing up in LL Bean clothes and climbing into a duck blind wasn’t a tin ear endorsement of “Supporting the 2nd Amendment”.

      Wasn’t that long ago when “Personal protection” was wayy down on the list of why people owned guns, and there was a long time when “2nd Amendment” meant “The Right to Hunt Ducks and Deer”.

      You still see vestiges of this in politics and the various false-flag “I’m a gun owner but…” articles.

    2. “How did this clown ever get a job with G&A to begin with?”

      Despite having been a super-fan of G&A 40 – 50 years ago, I haven’t read it much in recent years, and I’ve already demonstrated I don’t know anything about Metcalf. But from the conversation I gather he was a competitive shooter of some note. I simply observe that in our culture, sadly, being a celebrity at almost any level appears to imbue ones opinions with undue weight and credibility. Add to that that only a small percentage of people with skills, or knowledge of anything, are good communicators of the written word, and it explains why in the world of journalism, “hobby” or otherwise, we have an awful lot of people operating at a pay grade that exceeds their competence.

  5. If someone has served their sentence they have the right to defend themselves, their loved ones and their property. Just like every other human being. If someone is such a dangerous threat to society then they should be locked back up, executed, or better yet… stop infringing on other citizens’ right to bear arms and we’ll take care of those violent felons.

    1. Yeah, if they are thought to be that much of a risk to society that they can’t be allowed to have a gun then they should keep them in jail!

      They used to give a man’s guns back to him when he had served his sentence and was released from prison.

      Think it should still be done, or at least a 1 to 5 year prohibition then you can have a gun again. This do 1 thing wrong and lose a right for life stuff is bullshit!

  6. ^—- Under 30-something

    What is this “magazine” thing you speak of? It sounds like some strange relic of an ancient civilization. :-P

    I kid. Somewhat. I read my American Rifleman that I get from my NRA Life membership, but otherwise I have no idea why I’d subscribe to a gun magazine. It is far easier to keep up on political events on the internet, and I can find higher quality reviews of products online too.

    1. I have them send me a monthly link to the PDF version … which I then completely ignore.

      Paper? Quaint.

  7. Very good fishing. I think this guy doesn’t understand that if we are going to have a discussion, you have to be informed. You can’t just take talking points from the anti gunners.

  8. I kept trying to take my guns and ammo magazine and insert it in an AR. But for whatever reason, the magazine refused to seat properly. Worse, it didn’t even have any ammo in it.


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