Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Act like you've got a pair!

I received this note in the COMMENTS section of an article I wrote a couple of days ago. It wasn't directly applicable to the events of the article, but it certainly is in keeping with the RKBA theme. I quote Jason (FishOrMan) entirely for your convenience:

Hello Jerry,

I find you commented on my cases and it sounds like you would be interested to know I actually WON that appeal, (fighting Pro se too)!


Needless to say, I feel like Christmas came early, (I truly figured it would take until I reached the court of appeals before I got a judge to actually look at the issue).

Yes, I did get my ass kicked out of the whole deal. Yet, I am still unsure how I would respond to a direct violation of the right to bear arms by any state employee. They swore an oath to the Constitution, and when they are breaking that oath, I don't think they should be treated with anything better then contempt.

That is what I think... what I will do in the future I just don't know. But, somehow, I feel my children and grandchildren are already watching me.

The article in which I was "commenting on (his) case . . . " is called Second Amendment Woes, and I wrote it on December 22, 2004. Here's one of the most critical comments I made there:

This poor SOB has made his stand, and has asserted his Civil Rights. Maybe someday, ten or twenty years from now, and if he has enough money (which he has not) to hire clever lawyers who will pursue the case, he may even be cleared of all criminal charges. Maybe even the civil charges (which have not yet been brought by the local authorities). For now, he's facing jail time, and bankruptcy because he needs to find and pay lawyers, and he is completely despondant about his ability to defend himself, his family, and his home. I thank him for providing a 'test case' which may someday expand the interpretation of the Second Amendment for the rest of us, but I sure wouldn't want to be in his shoes.

(Emphasis added here)

I'm not sure I would want to be in his shoes today, either.

I know it took a year and a half (dating from his original May, 2004, arrest) for him to beat the rap, and it cost him a lot of time, money, anguish and embarassment. I can't imagine what his family went through, but I have checked out his blog from time to time for updates on court hearings (time off work?), trying to find decent lawyers that he could afford (who can afford any competent lawyer?), and general expense and inconvenience.

Most difficult, I suspect, was dealing with the sheer frustration of knowing that he was being harrassed not because he broke the law, but because he demanded his rights as defined by the law.

Second most difficult may be not knowing whether his rights as an acknowledged citizen of America would be taken away from him.

I don't know what it has cost him, but I know it wasn't insignificant and that his life has been dramatically interrupted by his experience.

When this all started, I was doubtful that he would be able to defend himself, or would be willing to endure the expense, humiliation and inconveneince (too weak a word!) to which he would be subjected. Most men would have given up. Most men would have cut a deal.

Jason didn't. He stood up for himself and demanded his rights. In a very real sense, he battled for the rights of all of us here.

This was his personal Saint Crispin's Day, and he can make any kind of speech he wants to. He earned it.

He won, and it's one of the most remarkable stories I've heard in a long, long time.

Congratulations, Jason. There can't be much question now whether you are Fish or Man. You've showed us the difference.
Great Big Brass Ones!

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