Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard Defies Attorney General Greg Zoeller Over Gun Rights; Says Second Amendment Does Not Apply To Indianapolis

Behind the scenes, there is a political and legal battle raging over whether the Second Amendment applies to states and local governments. In the case, District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court determined that the Second Amendment did apply to a Washington, D.C. to provide an individual right to bear arms which was applied to strike down a D.C. ordinance.

The District of Columbia is not a state, however. The issue thus remains whether the Second Amendment will apply to the state, including subunits of states such as cities and towns. The 9th Circuit, which includes California and is generally more liberal, concluded that the 2nd Amendment did apply to states in the case Nordyke v. King. The 7th Circuit, which includes Indiana and is generally more conservative, has decided that the 2nd Amendment does not apply to the states in the case, National Rifle Association v. City of Chicago, et al.

Indiana's Attorney General Greg Zoeller has signed onto an amicus ("friend of the court") brief arguing that the 7th Circuit decision should be overturned and that states and local governments, such as Indianapolis, should have to follow the 2nd Amendment. In direct opposition to the Indiana Attorney General, Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, who previously suggested to a tv reporter that the the City should consider adopting New York City-style registration of guns, is arguing in the case Scott v. City of Indianapolis, et al., that Indianapolis should not have to follow the Second Amendment. The Mayor in that case is trying to defend a gun return policy that requires someone whose gun is wrongfully seized to undergoing fingerprinting (which is checked against a national database) before the gun will be returned, even though fingerprinting was not a condition of possessing a gun in one's home. In addition, there have been reports that the City also conducts ballistics testing of wrongfully seized guns before they are returned.

Once again, Mayor Ballard demonstrates he has nothing but contempt and hostility for the most loyal Republican group out there - gunowners.

As far as the Mayor having a tin ear when it comes to politics, I ran across a notice on the internet in which a Ballard campaign worker announced he was looking for volunteers to work the Gun & Knife Show for the purpose of gathering email addresses for the Mayor. All the Ballard campaign worker would have had to do was announce to the crowd that the Mayor did not believe the 2nd Amendment applied to the City and he would have had plenty of emails from attendees at the convention.

For campaign notice, see below:

The Indy 1500 Gun and Knife Show is this weekend and we need volunteers to help out. They would be registering people to vote, signing people up to receive Mayor Ballard's emails, and possibly handing out literature. The days and times needed are Friday from 4pm-8pm and Saturday from 10am-2pm and 2pm-6pm. Only one volunteer is needed for each time slot. MCRCC will also have volunteers helping out so they will not be there by themselves.

The show is at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, 1202 E 38th Street.

Contact Jason to sign up and get your passes

Jason Gaither
Project Coordinator
Greg Ballard for Mayor
47 S. Pennsylvania, Suite 300

Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 686-3440 office
(317) 294-4862 cell


Gary R. Welsh said...

Paul, I don't understand why we can't make people understand that the Indiana Constitution provides an absolute right to bear arms. You don't even have to rely on the Second Amendment. Here's what the Indiana Constitution states in Article 1:

"Section 32. The people shall have a right to bear arms, for the defense of themselves and the State."

It frustrates me when attorneys ignore the Indiana Constitution and always rely on the U.S. Constitution.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Gary, we included an Indiana constitutional claim in the lawsuit.

Downtown Indy said...

Why does the city issue 'personal protection permits' and arrest people for carrying a firearm when they do not have one, when the state constitution says the have a 'right' to do so?

How does that work?

Doug said...

You probably are aware of this Paul, but just to note it in this post: the 7th Circuit's decision not to apply the 2nd Amendment to the states did not reflect its independent view of the 2nd Amendment, but rather an acknowledgment that Supreme Court precedent didn't (yet) allow its application to the states. There is some rusty and suspect precedent on point that doesn't allow its application to the states. If that's to change, it has to be the Supreme Court (and not the 7th Circuit) that does the changing -- this is consistent with the Circuits' conservatism in that it respects controlling precedent, perhaps more than the precedent really deserves.

Carl E Moldthan said...

Is Ballard trying to commit Suicide?

Paul K. Ogden said...

Good ooint, Doug. However, that doesn't prevent the state from taking the position that the 2nd Amendment should apply...which is what the AG has done.

Anonymous said...

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others deemed upatriotic or a threat to the government, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million
political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000
Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated’ people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.

If anyone in these United States is ignorant enough to believe that we are more civilized and humane than the good people of Russia, China, Germany, or other nations where regular people and families just want to live their lives in peace and harmony, then I can confidently assume that you've never spent any significant time living with these people. The only thing that killed millions of them was a submisseveness to a government who insisted that they disarm, before the killing began.

If you believe that this could never happen in the US, you are at odds with the writers of the US Constitution. They made it a foundational right that people could possess firearms to protect themselves from government.

Considering the fact that our Constitutional right to own firearms is based solely upon a need for citizens to protect ourselves from a tryannical government, it's my firm and unmoving opinion that those who endorse gun control are defacto supporters of government tyranny, no different than gun control advocates such as Mao, Hitler, and Lenin.

Mayor Ballard is therefore a direct threat to the safety of Indianapolis, to individual liberty, and to Constitutional government, and should be treated as such until he is replaced in the next election cycle.

Sean Shepard said...

Ultimately, the government does not grant a "right" to bear arms or a "right" to defend oneself.

These are natural rights that all people have (regardless of government attempts to neuter the people). The "Bill of Rights" for example, merely lists rights on a non-exhaustive basis that the people have, it does not "grant" them.

Some of the founders were indeed concerned that by listing some of those rights, that some may interpret the rights has deriving from the document when in fact they do not.

It's also worth noting that one of the founders wrote that the intent was that any citizen should have a right to bear any weapon which a regular military person might also be entrusted with (this rules out nuclear and biological weapons obviously) and theorized that should the federal government get out of control, the largest army they might raise is 20,000 troops which any state's volunteers and militia could easy outgun and thwart.

Sean Shepard said...

following up on my previous comment - I wanted to find the source material ....

From Federalist #46 (James Madison)

"Extravagant as the supposition is, let it however be made. Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth part of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops. Those who are best acquainted with the last successful resistance of this country against the British arms, will be most inclined to deny the possibility of it. Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of."

Paul K. Ogden said...


The only thing is that for the first 80 years or so, none of the Bill of Rights even applied to limit the power of state government. They were only originally aimed at the national government.

Gary is exactly right though. We are too eager to run to the U.S. Constitution when the Indiana Constitution also contains many of the same protections, sometimes more.

Claudia Beck Treacy said...

The organic Indiana Constitution of 1816 says that the provisions shall "forever be, and remain irrevocable and inviolate.."

Section 20 goes on to state "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves, and the State, and that the military be kept in strict subordination to yhe civil power."

So who had the right to change anything in this organic Constitution? The same wording applies to my version amended in 1995, under Sections 32 & 33. No one, because the "rights" came from our creator and were secured by the Constitutions.

Mayor Ballard is a nobody, but a bully and a thug. He is retired military and took an oath to the U.S. Constitution. As mayor, he took an oath or affirmation to support both constitutions. If he fails to uphold his oaths, he is simply guilty of treason.

What is the current punishment for treason?

Wait until the next election and vote him out? He should immediately be removed by any means.

Yesterday, Paul wrote about a loose cannon...the prosecutor. Everyone is likely familiar what Brizzi has allowed to happen to my son in Marion County Superior Court F 18. Ask Paul about the last two court sessions. The docket (if available) states Judge Hill was on the bench. That was one lie.

Someone had removed the public's ability to search for a case summary on line. Wow! Now we have secret courts! Another right taken away and no one is screaming "foul."

The prosecutor allows someone (not always the banks) to steal homes from poor schmucks. They actually throw the defendant's filings in the trash. What is up with this?

So what is the answer? Complaining does no good. The rich are getting richer. It is all about money.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend. Maybe the IRS needs to know. I KNOW they helped me more than once.

Helsel said...

If it doesn't apply to the states, then WHO THE HELL DOES IT APPLY TO!

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