Saturday, December 18, 2010

Brady Campaign Seeks To File Amicus Brief In Bateman Case

From the Brady Campaign:
Brady Center Urges Court to Dismiss Lawsuit Seeking Right to Carry Guns During Riots and States of Emergency

Dec 16, 2010

Washington, D.C. -- The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence today filed a brief in federal court in North Carolina urging the court to dismiss a lawsuit seeking a right to take up arms in streets and other public spaces during riots or other emergencies. The lawsuit challenges a longstanding North Carolina law that allows gun carrying on a person’s property but temporarily bars public gun carrying in the vicinity of a riot and during states of emergency.

“The Second Amendment does not grant a right of vigilantes to take up arms on our streets during a riot or state of emergency,” said Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “Police and emergency responders seeking to quell a riot or deliver aid during an emergency should not be forced to contend with legally-authorized armed individuals and groups roaming alleys and public streets.”

The Brady Center’s brief argues that there is no right of armed vigilantes to take to the streets during riots or congregate in the vicinity of emergency responders trying to secure a downtown during riots, looting, or terrorist attacks. The prospect of police and emergency responders being powerless to stop bands of armed citizens from taking to the streets during emergencies, looting, or rioting poses a serious threat to the government’s ability to maintain public order and deliver emergency services. If the lawsuit were successful, law enforcement would be unable to detect whether roaming armed individuals or gangs were would-be looters, terrorists, or vigilantes, thus jeopardizing their safety and their ability to respond to states of emergency.

The U.S. Supreme Court recently held that the Second Amendment grants a right to possess a gun in the home for self-defense, but emphasized that this right “is not unlimited” and is subject to “reasonable firearms regulations.” The Supreme Court has held that bans on carrying concealed weapons do not violate the Second Amendment and courts have given the government broad authority to restore order during riots and emergencies.

The lawsuit, Bateman v. Purdue, was filed by the Second Amendment Foundation in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina. The Brady Center’s brief was joined by North Carolina Million Mom March Chapters of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Religious Coalition For a Nonviolent Durham. The brief was filed by attorneys with the Brady Center and the firm Hogan Lovells US LLP, along with Drew Erteschik of the Raleigh, N.C. firm Poyner Spruill LLP.

To paraphrase Lynyrd Skynyrd -
Well, I heard Ms. Brady sing about her
Well, I heard ole Sarah put her down
Well, I hope Sarah Brady will remember
A Carolina man don't need her around anyhow

UPDATE: David Codrea has some good commentary on this nonsensical press release from the Brady Bunch in his National Gun Rights Examiner column.


  1. This is why they're losing. We say we want to do "A". They say "Ahhhhh they want to do Z-we can't let them do Z!!!!eleven!!"

    We want to maintain the right to be armed in the event of a breakdown of law and order, not to form vigilante posses but to protect our families and our property in the absence of police support. They claim we want to arm ourselves to go about looter hunting.

  2. Isn't armed citizens banding together to protect the community in times of peril sort of the definition of the militia?