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slimmer13

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Based on the judges remarks, it doesn't look good for a positive ruling.

 

Sporting Systems

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Yesterday (8/20) was the first day in court. And anti-climatic as it was, being reduced to a teleconference, it was still moving the ball forward.

This is my first lawsuit. Hopefully, my last. I don't ever wish this on anyone. The formal decision on these motions will come forth August 31 or sooner.
Judge Leighton started it off with his opening statement. This is not about the Second Amendment, and he would not be ruling on any aspect of the 2nd Amendment. He would be hearing motions for summary judgement on the states rights and ability to police it own citizens, really, the will of the people of Washington. He would be hearing the arguments about the dormant commerce clause, restricting sales to non residents, within the confines of federally protected interstate commerce.

His opening statement to the plaintiffs (our team), that he has read everything and is not inclined to rule in our favor, but rather grant the states motion for judgement, that we have an uphill battle. In so many words, he said...you lost, but I have to listen to you for an hour or so. So, the cards were set at the beginning of the hearing. Critical aspects that the state still fails to recognize, and it appears that the judge does too. The words chosen in the law "sell" and "deliver". 1639 prevents the SALE to non residents, and sale is defined as accepting money or other numeration in exchange for the product. Since this went into affect, it's been illegal to SELL or deliver a semi automatic rifle to a non resident of Washington. That includes individuals, dealers and manufacturers. 1639 lumps them all together and say specifically they cannot SELL to a non resident. Joel pointed this out repeatedly, and the state's argument was they wanted semi auto rifles to be the same as handguns, to "harmonize" the laws. We could sell it to them over the phone or internet and ship to an FFL in their state, like with handguns. They said the AG even says this on the FAQ website, that it's ok to ship to FFL's out of state. The AG, has the authority to declare that...but remember the AG recused himself from the lawsuit stating that he doesn't have enforcement power, that that's the local law enforcement...meaning he should be released from the lawsuit (the state's argument). But now, he does have the authority to make declarations, and dealer should trust his judgement even though he has no authority. Do you trust Bob Ferguson with your gun rights? The key word here is sell, that state says that SELL and DELIVER have the same meaning in this context, yet the RCWs do NOT pair the words at all, they are clearly defined differently within the state and federal law, withing every dictionary, in every context, they are different.

The judge did not see moved by the English language and moved onto the 18-21 year ban. This is where the judge really got into the weeds. You see, the judge was raised on farm. He was shooting when he was 6, driving the tractors when he was 12. They took their guns to school every day. And in the community, there were always some kids called "stubbies"...they didn't listen, so they lost fingers on the farm. They weren't responsible enough to operate machinery. The state proceeded to redefine young adults as infants, in old english law you were not an adult until 21 years old, and anyone under 21 was called an infant. At one point during the state's and judge's banter the judge flatly, loudly and unequivocally declared "They are not adults", referring to 18-21 year olds. Shortly after that statement, he related that "youth is akin to mental illness". The state has the ability to police it own residents, by the will of the people, to determine that in the name of public safety, 18-21 years cannot be allowed to purchase or use semi auto rifles. Nothing else mattered, this was not 2nd amendment issue, but a state's rights issue and the state should prevail. He was not moved by any argument to the contrary, because all kids are just crazy today.

The state again moved that we didn't have standing, because we have not been prosecuted and nor proven any harm. This was already decided long ago that we did. The state argued that 2 other plaintiffs have aged out, meaning they are now 21 and can purchase again. Another plaintiff, a student at Seattle U is ABOUT to age out (turn 21) and because he lives on campus, he cannot posses any firearm. Yeah, true, but he can purchase it and keep it at his parents house, where he is today as Seattle U has no classes this fall.

The states team had one annoying party on the conference call, who didn't understand that everyone should MUTE their phones. Every with repeated requests, no mute, So we continued to be blessed by a woman, a child and her dog who needed to go outside apparently at one point exclaim "are you kidding me?" when our attorney made the factual statement, semi auto rifles are RARELY used in crimes and are no more dangerous than any other firearm (as recently stated in Duncan v Becarra decision).

Some additional statements the Judge made were quite alarming, outside the scope of the the entire lawsuit, but he felt them germane to the conversation. Near the very end, he made the peculiar observation that this case would be more suited to a rural district court, not the Western district which is primarily an urban district. This statement nearly knocked me out of my chair. Are our civil rights now dependent on our geography? I've never known our civil rights to be metered based on where we lived. So, if I live in Othello, I should be able to sell guns, but Vancouver I cannot? A Colfax teen is more responsible than one from Bellevue? Wow. This was from a Judge.
In a nutshell, that's an hours worth of the relevant testimony. We are not optimistic that the judge will find wisdom in recent appellate decisions, nor the arguments we presented. This was somewhat expected based on the judges latitude with the state's legal team throughout the case. The Alliance will claim victory and vindication over citizens they have in fact violated numerous laws and found a judge to agree that it's ok...because all kids are crazy and federal commerce laws can be violated.

This ride just got a lot longer and more expensive. If the judge rules as he has indicated, this WILL BE be appealed to the 9th circuit court of appeals. The state has a bad track record at the appeals court, and they have a terrible hand to play. However, this is part of the grand plan, to establish appellate and supreme court victories nationwide, to solidify the 2A for our next generations.
I am also pleased to report that a state action was just filed in Tacoma by the Gun Owners of America, challenging the 1639 petitions themselves, the violations of Washington law that allowed the initiative on the ballot in the first place.

Moral to the story, the fight for your 2A is only going to intensify in this election, and future legislative sessions. We must work together to defeat anti gun candidates, to elect pro 2A candidates and continue to support those groups fighting for our rights at the local, state and federal level. Don't get caught up in other issues, stay laser focused on the 2A and work to restore and preserve our rights. A huge thank you to all the individuals, dealers and manufacturers that have supported this fight. Dealers that filed statements about the common use of semi auto rifles, and raised funds for the Second Amendment Foundation and the NRA. I am thankful to be a part of this journey, rest assured, I will not give up.

Yours in service to the 2A,
Daniel Mitchell
Sporting Systems Vancouver.
 
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Keep up the good fight.

I am unsure why the judge does not consider this a 2nd Amendment issue.

It is also interesting to note that Washington is home to one of the largest military bases. Soldiers as young as 17 are trained and trusted with firearms. Are they not adults?

At 20 I was leading a section of Marines. Most of them still teenagers; yet every one of them was an adult.
 

gmerkt

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I'm glad to hear this will be going to appeal as necessary. It never fails to amaze me at the lack of objectivity on the part of some sitting judges.

In so many words, he said...you lost, but I have to listen to you for an hour or so.

This is exactly how it works with hearings involving land use issues in my county. The whole thing is rigged, the conclusions are foregone, the hearing itself is just eyewash for the sake of appearance. Like elections in Russia.
 
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Not to sound harsh but should the average, above 21 year old, firearm owner be very excited about this lawsuit?

As my current knowledge of 1639 stands, each clause must be struck down individually. Am I wrong in this knowledge? That is to say even if the lawsuit succeeds against the commerce clauses 1639's most disturbing impacts are still in full effect: hipa violations, assault weapon legal definition, etc.

I am aware there is impact to your business by this unconstitutional law and thank you for challenging this BS. I hate that my taxes are footing the bill to fight your challenge. I wish the bill went right to Mikey B.
 

Sporting Systems

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>>Not to sound harsh but should the average, above 21 year old, firearm owner be very excited about this lawsuit?

Only if you care about everyone's civil rights, not just your own. They might come for the category that includes you next.


>>As my current knowledge of 1639 stands, each clause must be struck down individually. Am I wrong in this knowledge? That is to say even if the lawsuit succeeds against the commerce clauses 1639's most disturbing impacts are still in full effect: hipa violations, assault weapon legal definition, etc.

You are correct. The challenge, as we've discussed for almost 2 years, is attacking the parts of the laws we felt we had the best chance of winning on. If anyone felt that challenging the other parts were winnable, that suit would have been filed, it hasn't been.

>I am aware there is impact to your business by this unconstitutional law and thank you for challenging this BS. I hate that my taxes are footing the bill to fight your challenge. I wish the bill went right to Mikey B.

I too wish the ANTI GUNNERS had to pay to defend their BS initiative.
 
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>>Not to sound harsh but should the average, above 21 year old, firearm owner be very excited about this lawsuit?

Only if you care about everyone's civil rights, not just your own. They might come for the category that includes you next.


The rest of 1639 is aimed at that all encompassing category.

Good luck, and thanks for taking the time to respond.

In a side note, your free online 1639 training has been one of the most effective tools at combating this underhanded, evil legislation that I'm aware of.

I personally witnessed someone that was unaware of the training requirement try to legally purchase an AR. Instead of being turned away, the person was able to complete the training and start his legal purchase.

Thank you.
 

coltemp

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Great summary and shows you the core problem of the judical system in the US today.

Our system of justice only works when there is a generally moral people working to uphold the rights of all. Instead what we see clearly more and more are populations with no moral underpinning. Judge with heads to big over their made up power, and interested not in justice but in making things like they think they should be. Not considering the law but instead basing judgements on there own opinions. What that means is you have the same problem the Israelites had back in the book of Judges where " Every man did what was right in his own eyes."
There is a reason that that time was nothing but general chaos. (Sounds a lot like now!)

I do agree with you that the battle lines are being clearly drawn. They scream unity and compromise when in fact its all about do it my my way or else.
Keep fighting the good fight.
 

Sporting Systems

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In a side note, your free online 1639 training has been one of the most effective tools at combating this underhanded, evil legislation that I'm aware of.

I personally witnessed someone that was unaware of the training requirement try to legally purchase an AR. Instead of being turned away, the person was able to complete the training and start his legal purchase.

Thank you.

Thank you for that. 57,000 have completed the course, for free. Felt the free class was the best way to make a mockery of a crappy law, but be in full compliance and NOT cost anyone a single cent except for my web development team to build it for me. Since most classes were charging $50-100, it looks likes I saved Washington citizens about $2.8M, earned lots of gun business around the for other shops with an online, instant class. Its nice to hear words of support for our efforts to do that. It did piss off a lot of trainers though.

Have a great day.
 
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Hate the crap claim that under 21 is not an adult, if that’s the case, we can stop picking and choosing what rights they get, 18-21 year olds are responsible for far more deaths via car use every year than gun use and 18 is adult by law, can’t help it many 18 year olds still behave like children, that’s a parenting/responsibility problem.

The sad fact is, trying to get an impartial judge is practically a joke in and of itself.

I also hated reading, “this is jot a second amendment case” - funny, because 1639 specifically sought to create laws that directly affected people’s right to bear arms... so... maybe I am not educated enough to be so stupid that I can’t see that clearly this is a 2nd amendment case.

Trying to resolve things peacefully seems like a lot more work.
 
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How does the Washington state constitution play into this?

"SECTION 24 RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS. The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men."
 
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How does the Washington state constitution play into this?

"SECTION 24 RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS. The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men."
Doesn't in a Federal court action.
 
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I am also pleased to report that a state action was just filed in Tacoma by the Gun Owners of America, challenging the 1639 petitions themselves, the violations of Washington law that allowed the initiative on the ballot in the first place.

This is probably the most important part of this update, but nobody seemed to notice it. Success here will mean the entire laws thrown out.

It also was a winning argument in Thurston county and only lost at the state supreme court on a technicality- the court claimed they couldn't invalidate the petitions before the election was completed.

This is the part to get excited about, folks.
 
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