Obama-Appointed Judge Rules RI Gun-Grab Statute Isn’t Actually a Gun-Grab

P. Gardner Goldsmith | December 22, 2022
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Something changed in Rhode Island this week.

Thanks to collectivist members of the state legislature, to leftist Governor Dan McGee (D - who officially claims his primary goal as governor is “getting shots in arms,” as opposed to actually abiding by the U.S. and state constitutions), and to an Obama-appointed judge, Rhode Island residents and gun-sellers are going to suffer even more attacks on their inherent right to keep and bear arms.

Christian Wade, of The Center Square, reports that on December 14, U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell Jr. refused to block the enforcement of a new Rhode Island statute targeting so-called “semi-auto” guns, their bullet magazines, and freedom.

“On Wednesday, U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell Jr. rejected a request by several firearms owners to issue a preliminary injunction blocking the law from going into effect. 

In the ruling, McConnell said the plaintiffs, which included a Rhode Island hunting and fishing supply store and several gun owners, had not proven they would ‘suffer irreparable harm’ from the new law, and said enforcing the restrictions was ‘in the public's interest.’"

Because, of course, implying that government-held guns will be used to threaten the rights of peaceful people to defend themselves? That, according to McConnell, is in “the public interest.”

No need to consider the fact that this vaunted word “public” is just a term that’s applied to an arbitrarily labeled group of individuals, whose sacred rights are supposed to be untrammeled by government.

Judge McConnell’s misunderstanding of that term – his fantastical concept of “public interest” – warns that he has no grasp of the fact that there is no such thing as “public interest." Rationally, morally, there only is the individual, and what is supposed to be the universal recognition of and respect for each individual’s rights.

Throughout his ruling, Judge McConnell negates individual rights. He replaces the primacy of the peaceful person with the primacy of the aggressive gang -- the state -- insinuating that, through this new statute, every peaceful individual with a right to self-defense will be “protected”… by a government, threatening armed attack on each individual if he or she wants to hold firm to that right.

The statute McConnell has upheld is called the “Large Capacity Feeding Device Ban of 2022” and, foremost among its provisions, it allows the state to charge with a felony anyone other than a “federally licensed firearms dealer” who DARES to “manufacture, sell, offer to sell, transfer, purchase, possess, or have under his or her control a large capacity feeding device."

And the government defines “large capacity” as accepting more than 10 rounds of ammo.

In other words, if you already own a magazine that holds more than 10, you have to turn it in, because not only did the politicians who voted for this overlook the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment, they also dismissed the Constitution’s prohibition against ex-post facto laws.

The statute doesn’t bother with those niggling trivialities, instead saying:

“Any person convicted of violating the provisions of this section shall be punished by imprisonment of not more than five (5) years, or by a fine of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000), and the large capacity feeding device shall be subject to forfeiture.”

So, not only can only gun shops have possession of the “large capacity” mags, they can’t sell them, really, because, once a buyer receives the mag, he or she can’t legally possess it. Totally logical – in the minds of gun-grabbing rights-attackers.

The statute does allow people to hold onto their “large capacity” mags after the effective date, IF they modify the mags to make them hold no more than 10 rounds.

In other words, it doesn’t allow it, as noted above. And if you live in Rhode Island and want to challenge that attack on what you rightfully own, then, in the long run, armed agents of the state government will visit your home to set you straight.

Those will be agents your taxes paid and armed.

Related: Wild West?! NYC Mayor Rails – And FAILS – Attacking SCOTUS Gun Ruling | MRCTV

Judge McConnell has no problem with that, nor other provisions of the statute that directly attack logic and the right to self-defense. In fact, in his ruling, he actually wrote that this bald-faced incursion is “consonant” with the Constitution.

Judge McConnell also claimed - get this - that the state permanently forcing out of their possession or sale so-called “large capacity” mags (LCMs) will not bring “irreparable harm” to the plaintiffs.

And he had the gall to write:

“…(T)he plaintiffs have failed in their burden to demonstrate that LCMs are ‘Arms’ within the meaning of the Second Amendment's text. Moreover, even were they "arms," the plaintiffs have failed to prove that LCMs are weapons relating to self-defense.”

First, if bullets are not “arms” then what do “fireARMS” fire? A rifle is just a club without the projectiles it is designed to fire into a threat or target. And if the judge doesn’t think bullets are part of the large array of arms, then why worry about them? Clearly they can’t do any harm.

He can think about his inconsistency if ever he’s asked to fight a fire at an ammo-manufacturer.

Second, regarding his point on self-defense. ALL weapons can be used for offensive or defensive reasons. Virtually any object can be used either way, because HUMAN BEINGS are the ones wielding them, and human beings make their own decisions about whether to be aggressive or defensive and peaceful among others.

As a man whose salary is paid only through the aggression of the polis, one might think McConnell grasps that point,

Of course, functionally, McConnell swears to uphold the US Constitution, and the Second Amendment explicitly says, “the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” It makes no mention of “defense” because the right to engage in self-defense always is implied by the right of ownership and the right to bear arms. One cannot engage in defense if one is, a-priori, prohibited from owning and bearing that which is necessary for defense.

The fatuousness of that mental drivel is surpassed, however, by McConnell’s turgid treatment of the Fifth Amendment’s clear prohibition against uncompensated takings without any jurisprudence:

“Because the LCM Ban is a valid exercise of police power, there is no ‘taking’ requiring just compensation and, consequently, no violation of the Fifth Amendment.”

In other words, HE claims that the ban is a “valid exercise of police power” (power that is supposed to be constrained by the Bill of Rights and the right to due process when accused of a real crime).

And McConnell doesn’t even understand that the terms he uses to paint firearms in dark light are absolutely idiotic and irrelevant. In his ruling, he bandies about labels such as “weapons of war” and “semi-automatic” – which have no specific meaning.

As Major Burdock writes for The Goldwater:

“The case involves a request by a Chepachet gun store and several Rhode Island gun owners for a preliminary injunction blocking a new law regarding ‘high-capacity magazines.’ For the record there is no such thing and the term was invented by anti-gun zealots. On a footnote, neither does the term ‘assault weapon’ exist.”

Anti-gun zealots label “semi-auto” any gun that fires a round with each pull of the trigger, meaning that anything beyond ancient guns that required a manual trigger-cock for each round would be given this scary label.

But perhaps we should expect this kind of language manipulation and inversion of rights from McConnell. Not only was he appointed by Obama, he was a member of the finance committee for Hillary Clinton’s first Senate run, served as treasurer of the Rhode Island Democratic State Committee for fourteen years starting in the mid-1990s, was “a key figure in the tobacco litigation as a ‘negotiator and primary drafter of the master settlement agreement’ (his own words) between the tobacco companies and the states.’” And, perhaps most notable, for four years, McConnell headed up the Rhode Island branch of Planned Parenthood.

Which offers great clarity.

See, McConnell cares so much about “violence” and “saving lives” that he headed up the Rhode Island division of the biggest abortion mill in human history.

This man is a “judge.”

Welcome to America.

Related: Conservative Icon Jon Voight Calls For Tighter Gun Laws - and Gets It Wrong | MRCTV