Independence Institute Research Director, Law Professor, and Second Amendment expert Dave Kopel spoke at the University of Colorado at Denver on Sept. 11, 2012. The anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks is a good time to consider how to enhance protection against all forms of terrorism through policy changes which safeguard civil liberties. One of the best such changes is removing restrictions against licensed carry on campus, because such restrictions make colleges into safe zones for mass murderers and other criminals.
Archive for the 'Kopelization' Category
The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision in 2010 was a landmark case protecting political speech – whether in the form of a guy standing on the sidewalk promoting or bashing a political candidate or that same guy giving money on behalf of his corporation for or against a political candidate or cause. The Court found that restricting political contributions, even from groups of people formed as corporations, was antithetical to our Constitution in general and the First Amendment in particular. On the heels of that decision, the anti-speech interests around Colorado began constructing a plan to combat the ruling.
What ultimately ended up happening was a coalition of forces, mostly on the Left, raised a ton of money (irony?) to put Amendment 65 on this November’s ballot. As it appears on the ballot, Amendment 65 is titled, “Colorado Corporate Contributions Amendment.“Part of the Amendment 65 campaign’s stated goals is to overturn the Citizens United ruling.
This past Wednesday the 19th, local radio station KGNU hosted a debate on Amendment 65, featuring our Research Director Dave Kopel and former legislator Ken Gordon. As you might imagine, Dave took the position in favor of political speech and thus, against Amendment 65, while Ken Gordon argued against political speech and in favor of Amendment 65. You can hear the full 60 minute debate here on iVoices.org.
When any tragic event erupts anywhere around the country involving a firearm, our Research Director and Second Amendment scholar Dave Kopel is in high demand for commentary. Below you’ll find the synopsis of Dave’s commentary on the Aurora theater shooting thus far. I’ll continue to update this page as more comes out.
Aurora Theater Shooting Coverage:
PBS News Hour.
July 23, 2012. Kopel appears at 4:04, at start of a 10 minute segment.
Patricia Calhoun, Mike Littwin, April Washington, and Kopel discuss the Aurora murders. July 20, 2012. 27 mins.
Postgame: more on the murders.
Don’t turn Aurora killer into celebrity. USA Today.
July 19, 2012.
Kopel and Eugene Volokh quoted in New York Times, on Colorado gun laws.
July 20, 2012.
Brady Campaign staff and Kopel webchat on USA Today. July 19, 2012.
Size of ammunition cache not unusual, say gun experts.
By Joey Bunch. Denver Post. July 22, 2012.
Kopel and Piers Morgan agree: Thursday would have been the better day for a gun control debate. CNN. July 19, 2012. Transcript.
CNN Reliable Sources. Howard Kurtz bemoans “a troubling thing that television does,” namely the rush to “turn such an atrocity into ideological fodder while the victims are still being treated.” As an example, plays Morgan/Kopel interchange, with Morgan insisting a gun control debate must take place on the night of the crime. July 22, 2012. Transcript. Video.
A Land Without Guns: How Japan Has Virtually Eliminated Shooting Deaths.
By Max Fisher. The Atlantic. July 23, 2012. Discusses Kopel’s article on Japanese gun control. (Spanish text of the article available here.) The article is an excerpt from a chapter in Kopel’s book The Samurai, the Mountie, and the Cowboy: Should America Adopt the Gun Controls of Other Democracies? The book was named Book of the Year by the American Society of Criminology, Division of International Criminology.
Public health leaders ‘afraid to say guns’. By Katie Kerwin McCrimmon and Diane Carman. Health Policy Solutions. July 24, 2012.
Tuerie d’Aurora: armes à feu à profusion. By Nicolas Bérubé. La Presse (Montreal). July 23, 2012.
NPR: Talk of the Nation, hosted by Neal Conan. July 25, 2012.
Catch Independence Institute research director Dave Kopel on CNN’s Piers Morgan Show tonight (7-8:00 PM Mountain Time) discussing the Aurora movie theater shooting.
This aired Friday night, just a day after the SCOTUS decision dropped.
Thanks to our two in-house constitutional law scholars, Dave Kopel and Rob Natelson, we have a couple of fresh off sound editor podcasts on yesterday’s SCOTUS ruling. But before I link to you that, take a look at Dave’s article on the ruling in the SCOTUSblog.
Just hours after the ruling came down yesterday, Dave got on the phone with George Mason University Law professor Ilya Somin for analysis. You can find the iVoices.org podcast here.
Rob Natelson went home immediately yesterday after the decision came down to read the Court’s opinions in their entirety. Today he reported his findings both on his blog and on iVoices.org. Rob’s take is focused primarily on why the argument that the penalty for not buying insurance is really a “tax” has no constitutional basis or founding evidence. Listen to Rob’s iVoices podcast here.
I have a special announcement to make. This Thursday the Supreme Court will release its ruling on the constitutionality of Obamacare. This is going to be the big news of the day (the week? the month? the YEAR!). As soon as the decision drops this Thursday, our constitutional law scholar Dave Kopel is going to get on the phone with a couple of very highly regarded figureheads in the legal world – Richard Epstein and Gary Lawson. Dave will be discussing the fallout from the decision, taking particular care to get into the legal analysis with the two professors. In other words, it is a law nerd’s deepest, darkest fantasy.
I will make sure to post the podcasts here on my blog as soon as they are released Thursday afternoon/evening. Stay tuned!
Independence Institute research director Dave Kopel reminds everyone on his website that the Independence Institute was some of the first to attend the “Obamacare is unconstitutional” dance party. Thankfully, many more of have joined us since those early days, but it’s worth taking a look back at the scholarship we’ve amassed for the last two-plus years. Below you’ll find Dave’s overview of our work:
When did the Independence Institute explain that Obamacare was probably unconstitutional? Senior Fellow Rob Natelson on Jan. 23, 2010. Research Director Dave Kopel on March 22, 2010 (tax power), and April 2, 2010 (commerce power, constitutional structure). Here is the video of Kopel’s April 28, 2010, debate with former Colorado Supreme Court Justice Jean Dubofsky, who had announced, “I believe that the lawsuit stands little chance of success,” and “The mechanism chosen by Congress to enforce the requirement of health insurance is not unusual.”
Testimony on D.C. Council’s proposed revision to the District’s gun control laws. Kopel argues against a provision which excessively discriminates against people with visual impairments. The testimony also critiques D.C.’s unusual system of long gun registration. Feb. 13, 2012.
Kopel testified on Nov. 17 before the U.S. Senate subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism regarding S. 463, Senator Schumer’s bill to vastly expand the number of people prohibited from owning or temporarily possessing a firearm. 29-page written testimony. Video of subcommittee hearing. Kopel’s 5 minute prepared remarks begin at 72:41. At 103:40, there is a Q&A with Senator Grassley, with leads to follow-up questions with Senator Schumer, in which Kopel explains to Schumer what the Schumer bill actually does. Kopel discusses the bill on NRA News. Media coverage: NPR, ABC, Governing, Albany Times Union.
Kopel testified on Sept. 13 before the U.S. House subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, regarding H.R. 822, which would set up a national system of interstate reciprocity for concealed handgun carry permits. Kopel’s 24-page written testimony. Video of the subcommittee hearing. Cato Institute podcast with Kopel on the issue.
Independence Institute Research Director David Kopel, who is also a constitutional law professor at DU Law School, offered the following comment on today’s Supreme Court oral argument:
Today the Justices strongly indicated that they will address the merits of the health control law, and will reject the argument that the Anti-Injunction Act prevents them from deciding the constitutionality of the individual mandate. Although the Justices had different rationales, they appeared to be unanimous in their result. Notably, the one Justice who said he agreed with an expansive interpretation of the Anti-Injunction Act was Justice Breyer, and he said that the Act did not apply at all, because the individual mandate penalty is not a “tax.”
The oral argument also highlighted how badly the health control law was drafted, even in its most important provision, the penalty for not purchasing health insurance from the congressionally-favored oligopoly. Solicitor General Verrelli, representing the Obama administration, had to perform numerous verbal contortions in order to defend the administration’s interpretation of the penalty, leading Justice Kagan to ask, “Is your whole point that this was inartful drafting by Congress . . . ?” Today’s argument is a reminder that when Congress enacts a lengthy statute which was, apparently, never read in its entirety by a single congressperson who voted for it, the statute will probably create numerous unintended consequences, which even the government cannot justify.
Because of Dave Kopel’s dedication and hard work over the last couple decades, there are hundreds, if not thousands of people in the Washington DC and Chicago areas who would have been shot and killed, but instead will live full and fruitful lives. These people can thank folks like Dave Kopel who helped shape the decisions in McDonald v. Chicago and DC v. Heller – where handguns and the self-defense they bring, became legal once again. New evidence has surfaced that shows the crime rate has plummeted in both cities since the monumental Supreme Court decisions came down. Therefore, many people owe their lives to the work Second Amendment scholars like Dave Kopel did to help turn the tide in favor of gun (self-defense) rights.
Thanks Dave! Our cities are much safer places thanks to you.