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News & Editorials

Gun Rights Advocate Suing Rhode Island Attorney General

Spreading the Battlefield

by Scott Traudt

September 13, 2001

Most Constitutional scholars would argue that the most provocative case ever heard in a United States court dealing with the 2nd Amendment was US vs. Emerson, a case heard in 1999 by the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas. In plain, understandable English, a US court ruled that – quite simply – the 2nd Amendment was clearly an individual right of the same magnitude as the other guarantees enshrined in the Bill of Rights. This probably didn’t sit well with Sen. Chuck Schumer, or the Kennedys, or any of the liberal “scholars” who’ve earned their keep over the years by claiming that the 2nd is actually designed to protect duck hunting, or the National Guard, and most assuredly not citizens or individuals in a – cover the eyes of your children, folks – well regulated militia.

On Friday, August 31st, the failing grades for past social studies courses has lead to another round of “education through confrontation,” only this time the site of the activity is the US District Court for Rhode Island, and the plaintiff in this case is Yours Truly. I applied for a handgun carry permit in January through the Attorney General’s Office of the State of Rhode Island, and was denied in February. Though on paper I was told that I failed to state a valid reason, the evidence from other sources clearly indicates that I was denied because I didn’t either know the right people, donate to the proper campaigns, hire the right state senator or representative to be my lawyer, or because I did something outrageous like ask for a stenographer be present at my appeal hearing. With my lawyer.

In true Orwellian language, an appeal hearing I was promised vanished faster than documents at the Rose Law Firm subject to a federal subpoena. Then I was told I had no right to a hearing, anyway.

Which brings us to the present time, and the “confrontation” element of the whole Circus Maximus which passes for law, constitutional principles, and justice in Rhode Island.

Using a federal statute tailor-made for combating racism and discrimination and false arrests (42 USCS 1983 “The Civil Rights Act of 1870”), four members of the Attorney General’s office of the State of Rhode Island were sued for violating my 2nd, 5th, and 14th Amendment rights under the US Constitution. Of particular importance is the 2nd Amendment claim, for in attempting to get Emerson heard in a jurisdiction other than the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, I’m attempting to “spread the playing field” to use an appropriate football analogy, and force Brand-X to commit resources to battling me in The Biggest Little State in the Union. An element of any good guerilla operation is having disciplined small units undertaking independent action at times and places of their own choosing when the tactical situation warrants. Remember the trial lawyers suing every gun manufacturer in every jurisdiction possible? Same theory…going on the offensive may not get you a victory, but staying on the defensive will most assuredly provide for defeat.

There are other components to this case...

Money has changed hands from permit seekers to politicians. Politicians have contacted members of the AG’s staff, if not the AG himself. With “economic rent” being paid for a constitutional right, and the issuance of what amounts to a “state contract” in the form of a handgun permit, the activities in the AG’s office are clearly within the domain of the federal Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).

All it will take is for one man or woman, sitting at a deposition with counsel present, to invoke their 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination and every federale not busy trying to put Providence Mayor Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci in prison will be looking into the evidence produced in Scott Traudt vs. Sheldon Whitehouse, US CANO: 01-410-ML, RI.      

The defendants are straight from Central Casting; a computer model couldn’t have created a better set of opponents for The Good Guys. There’s the Rhode Island Attorney General, Sheldon Whitehouse. He’s the rich scion of a bush-league political dynasty whose claim to fame has been trying to destroy property rights for all Americans before the US Supreme Court in a landmark property rights case…

Then there’s Vincent MacAteer and Patrick Sperlangano, two cops from a Rhode Island municipal police department who were at the scene when more than 900 guns at a police-run gun buyback vanished off the books…They now choose who does or doesn’t get concealed carry permits. They may have to choose between solitary confinement or general someday...

And of course there’s James R. Lee, who would be the Peter Lorre character in a Bogart film. He loped onscreen long enough to commit to print every illegal action taken against me, and he is to be commended by all of us for being so constitutionally impaired -– in the intellectual sense –- that were it not for his presence, this film noire may not have been possible.

So the party has just begun here in The Biggest Little, and Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, and Montana had better look out: you’re not the only states where people can walk softly and carry a big stick, or who think that ‘ole Conny -– that darling of enlightened thought thrown together by those men fresh from burying their war dead in 1787 -- is worth fighting for as brutally or viciously as possible.

So, give her a read, and we’ll see you in court…

Click either link below to view the actual lawsuit:

MS Word version (.doc)  --  Adobe Acrobat version (.pdf)


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