Monday, July 8, 2024

Talking Points for the Lawsuit Banning Body in Armor in NY State Brought Forth the by Plaintiff Armored Republic Holdings LLC


Talking Points for the Lawsuit Banning Body in Armor in NY State Brought Forth the by Plaintiff Armored Republic Holdings LLC

Armored Republic Holdings LLC (Arizona Company) v s Walter Mosley (NY State Secretary of State, Steven James, Superintendent of the New York State Police, Anne Donnelly, Nassau County District Attorney, and Melinda Katz, Queens County District Attorney.

The lawsuit is a Second Amendment challenge to the State of New York’s statutes and regulations banning the sale, purchase, acquisition, and transfer of body armor to persons who are not in certain “eligible professions”.

The lawsuit is based on the Second and Fourteenth amendments.

The right to keep and bear arms includes/refers to the right to WEAR, BEAR, or CARRY upon the person or in the clothing or in a pocket for the purpose of being armed and ready for offensive or defensive action in a case of conflict with another person.

Body armor is included in the term “arms”

The Challenged Regulations infringe on the rights of New York citizens to keep and bear body armor by prohibiting all, but a select few from lawfully acquiring body armor.

Under the Bruen decision, the defendants must meet their burden by showing that the Challenged Regulations are consistent with America’s historical tradition of firearms regulation.  This is a burden the defendants cannot meet.
Bruen struck down NY’s “Proper Cause” licensing regime for the carry of firearms under which an applicant could only obtain a license to carry a firearm “only if he demonstrated a special need for self-protection distinguishable from that of the general public. 

The Challenged Regulations in this case, are worse than the “special need” regime invalidated in Bruen.  Unlike in Bruen when an individualized determination was made for each applicant as a person, the Challenged Regulations bar ANYONE from acquiring body armor unless they are employed in an eligible profession.

The inherent right for self-defense is central to the Second Amendment right (Heller).  Like the D.C. handgun ban was struck down, NY’s body armor ban amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that is overwhelming chosen by the American society for that lawful purpose.   

The Bruen decision described both weapons and armor as “ARMS”.

History of the Use Body Armor:
1181 – King Henry II of England proclaim every free layman to have a shirt of mail, a helmet of some sort, and a lance.
1285 – Statute of Winchester – commanded every man have in his house a chainmail shirt, a haubergeon, and a helmet of iron.
1328 – Statute of Northampton – demonstrated not only that armor was within the meaning of “arms” but also that armor was possessed by all classes and professions of persons.
1511 – King Henry VIII reissued the Statue of Winchester
1606 – King James I granted a charter to the Virginia Company for the creation of a settlement.  Among the rights granted was the right to acquire “Armour” and all other things useful for their defense.
1680 – New York forbad the sale of any amor or weapons to the Indians.
1756 - Maryland statute prohibited Roman Catholics from possessing armor.
1783 – Connecticut statue made it a capital crime to commit robbery while being armed with any dangerous armour or weapons.
No law in American history leading up to the ratification of the Second Amendment n 1791 prohibited the acquisition of body armor by persons based on their profession or restricted the lawful acquisition of armor to select professions.
Body armor was in common use.  NY, NC, RI, and VA required citizens to keep various kinds of armor for use in the cavalry as late as 1798; used in the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War.
1860s – bullet proof vests were purchasable by the general public, used in the Civil War
Statistics for Modern Body Armor Use Today
Nearly 99.4% of police forces nationwide use some form of body armor when on duty.
Currently there are millions of body armor products in use among American private citizens for civilian purposes. The overwhelming majority of body armor products are used for lawful purposes such as law enforcement and civilian purposes. 
The FBI also found that 70% of mass-shootings are committed using handguns, but handguns are not banned, yet they are used far more than body armor. 
What about the issue of whether an arm is “in common use”/
Common use is met when at least tens of thousands of an item are in use (Avitabile v Beach) or (Maloney v Singas).
The ban on stun gunswas reversed in Massachusetts because hundreds of thousands of tasers and stun guns have been sold to private citizens (Caetano v Massachusetts).
There are far more body armor products in use among Americans today.
The Challenged Regulations

On June 6, 20233 Governor Hochul signed into law restrictions on the purchase, sale, exchange, and transfer of bullet-proof vests for citizens outside of people in selected professions.

On July 1, 2022, Governor Hochul signed legislation that expanded the scope of these restrictions from applying only to body vests to applying more broadly to all “body armor; went into effect on July 6, 2022.

The Challenged Regulations definition of body armor found in N.Y. Penal 270.20(2) defines “body armor” as any product that is personal protective body covering intended to protect against gunfire, regardless of whether such product is to be worn alone or is sold as a complement to another product or garment”.
Select professions include Police officers, Peace officers, Persons in the Military or NY National Guard.  
Additional Professions added include in the Challenged Regulations:
Armored car guard
Security guard
Emergency medical technician
Ambulance driver
Firearms dealer
Private investigator
Building safety inspector
Code enforcement officer
Firearms instructor
Professional journalist
Nuclear safety officer
Process server
Animal control officer
Federal firearms dealer
Range safety officer
Forensic science technician, ballistic examiner
School building administrator and school district administrator
The first offense is a Class A misdemeanor, every subsequent offense is a Class E felony.
The following categories are not “professions” within the meaning of the Challenged Regulations and are not eligible to acquire body armor and are also categorically ineligible for recognition as a class of persons possible of being designated as an “eligible profession”:

Member of the People within the meaning of the Second Amendment:
Law-Abiding American Citizen;
Stay-at-home parent;
Retired person;
Person whose professional career is inactive for reasons other than retirement;
Disabled person unable to maintain employment in a profession;
Purchaser of Body  Armor Products; And
Prospective purchaser of Body Armor Products
Summary of the Unconstitutionality of the Challenged Regulations

The provisions of the Challenged Regulations that prohibit the acquisition of body armor by persons not engaged or employed in an eligible profession violate the Second Amendment because they prevent law-abiding American citizens from acquiring, and prevent the sale of arms based on their profession, a prohibition for which there is no historical analogue in this Nation’s traditions of arms regulations.
The provisions of the Challenged Regulations that establish criteria and processes for determining “eligible professions” that may acquire body armor violate the Second Amendment because they expressly exclude from eligibility entire classes of persons from being able to acquire body armor or even to apply for eligibility, a prohibition for which there is no historical analogue in this Nation’s tradition of arms regulation.

The provisions in the Challenged Regulations that require an in-person transfer of body armor violate the Second Amendment because they have the effect of eliminating the ability of law-abiding, responsible citizens to acquire body armor. 
Federal law and the law of some states outlaws the possession of body armor by violent felons but provides exemptions for such felons who need body armor for their profession.  But the Challenged Regulations treat everyone as a violent felon and allow only certain privileged professions to acquire body armor based on the Secretary of State’s determination that those professions have a special need for it.  Like New York’s carry license regime that was invalidated in Bruen, the Challenged Regulations permit New Yorkers to acquire arms “only after demonstrating to government officials some special need.”  Therefore, like the regulations that were struck down in Bruen, the Challenged Regulations “violate” the Fourteenth Amendment in that they prevent law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms.

S.C.O.P.E. Shooters Committee On Political Education

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

248 Years Ago Tomorrow Second Continental Congress ratified the Declaration of Independence


July 3, 2024

When the 56 delegates to the Second Continental Congress ratified the Declaration of Independence 248 years ago tomorrow, they were creating much more than a nation. They were giving birth to an idea.

America, at its core, is an idea. And it’s one that ranks as one of the greatest innovations in the history of human civilization, right up there with the wheel, the steam engine, the printing press, and the Internet.

The idea of America wasn’t born in 1776, however. By then it had already evolved over thousands of years.

The ancient Greeks embraced individual liberty, direct democracy, and a respect for the rule of law.

The Roman republic further refined Greek democracy and developed a more professional legal code. The early Roman Empire embodied peace through strength, ushering in nearly two centuries of geopolitical stability and economic prosperity under the Pax Romana.

The later Byzantine Empire fused Greek and Roman ideas with Judeo-Christian values. And by 1000 AD, the Republic of Venice-- borrowing from Rome’s republican form of government-- infused an early form of capitalism to this model.

The Dutch republic of the 1600s refined the concept of a powerful, free, capitalist society even further, as did philosophers like Rousseau, Montesquieu, John Locke, and Adam Smith.

So, when the Founding Fathers wrote the Declaration of Independence (and subsequently the US Constitution), they didn’t have to start from scratch; they drew from a rich, 2,000-year intellectual heritage of the giants who came before them.

This means that America is ultimately a composite of the very best ideas that human civilization ever had to offer-- and the combined concept was then elevated to unprecedented heights.

Nothing is perfect, and America wasn’t either.

But based on this idea, the United States became the world’s largest economy in less than a century and the dominant global superpower about 80 years later. That is an unparalleled achievement which no other superpower in human history has come close to matching.

It’s also worth pointing out that the majority of the world’s most important innovations, from airplanes and air conditioning to cell phones and chocolate chip cookies, were either born or perfected in America.

Again, none of this is an accident. America’s success is the deliberate outcome from combining the best ideas from 2,000+ years of human civilization… plus some disciplined execution and a little bit of luck.

Obviously, America has weathered challenges as well. The Civil War. The Great Depression. The turmoil of the 1960s.

But its foundation of economic potential, plus a baseline of social cohesion and shared values, have always allowed the nation to overcome... and for the idea of America to persist.

The country is now at an undeniable crossroads, and it’s not just about a single election.

There are obvious signs of national decline: rising inflation, mounting debt, diminished global standing, a loss of government dignity, and stinging embarrassments like the shameful withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Even the idea of America itself is on the ropes; there are powerful forces within government, media, and the education system who seek to redefine America’s core principles.

Capitalism has been demonized and reinvented. Individual liberty has given way to a radical woke ideology. And the concept of limited government is almost a punchline at this point.

Still, there is a plausible scenario in which America’s best days are ahead.

If politicians embrace the principles that originally fueled the country’s prosperity—such as capitalism and laissez-faire productivity—America could experience an economic boom not seen since the Industrial Revolution.

By cutting taxes, slashing anti-capitalist regulation, and embracing the free market, the increase in productivity could be staggering.

This boom would lead to increased tax revenue, i.e. funds which could rebuild the military, secure the southern border, save Social Security, curb inflation, balance the budget, and chip away at the national debt.

As China buckles under the consequences of its central planning and upside-down demographic pyramid (brought on by its idiotic “One Child policy”), the United States could easily reassert its global primacy.

The dollar’s status as the global reserve currency would be unquestioned, and the world could see a new era of global peace and prosperity.

This is not a pipe dream. It’s a genuine possibility.

The other possibility is that the government does nothing to arrest America’s decline.

The debt continues to spiral further out of control. Rising deficits trigger painful inflation. Excessive regulation stifles economic growth, leaving the economy stagnant and performing far below its full potential.

Individuals are constrained by politicians’ incessant and debilitating rules about how to live, what to buy, and what to drive. The social fabric continues to tear apart with idiotic mandates, censorship, wokeness, gaslighting, and a hatred for capitalism.

Unfortunately, that is the road the country is presently on. Yes, it can be fixed. They can change directions. And we certainly hope that happens.

But as we used to say in the military, hope is not a course of action. That’s why we have a Plan B.

Having a Plan B is not being negative or pessimistic. It’s certainly not irrational. And it’s not unpatriotic.

The fierce individuality to NOT bow down to circumstances is exactly what has allowed America to persevere so many times before.

And taking sensible steps to preserve, protect, and defend what you have worked so hard to achieve in life is about as core of an American value as it gets.

To your freedom,  James Hickman

Co-Founder, Schiff Sovereign LLC

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