Thursday, September 4, 2014
Neo Nazi Gets Support from Larry Pratt and the GOA
National Socialist Movement member Samuel Johnson, an organizer of illegal immigration rally in 2010 at the Veteran’s Memorial, shouts at pro immigration protesters. (Photo: Austin Daily Herald)
Guns dot com
A white supremacist whose case has made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court is at the center of the debate over gun control, pitting public safety against Fourth Amendment protections.
Several groups on both sides of the fight have recently weighed in on the case of Samuel Johnson, deemed a repeat violent offender under the Armed Career Criminal Act by a Minnesota court in 2012 and sentenced to 15 years in prison after he was caught with several firearms, including a 12-gauge shotgun without a serial number, according to court documents.
For Gun Owners of America — who submitted an amicus statement to the court in July in favor of Johnson — this is a Fourth Amendment issue.
“It gives the police an overly broad tool that they shouldn’t have,” Larry Pratt, GOA executive director, told Guns.com. “So, if we win, good — we protect the Bill of Rights.”
Pratt said that although the GOA is not endorsing Johnson as an individual (and a repeat offender connected to a racist hate group accused of plotting a terrorist attack on a Mexican consulate), the neo-Nazi might not be guilty of possession.
But the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence — which filed its amicus brief last week — thinks this is a clear-cut case of public safety.
“I would hope that everyone on all sides of the gun debate agree that felons in possession of illegal firearms should be severely punished,” Jonathan Lowy, director of Brady’s Legal Action Project, told Guns.com. “Gun Owners of American has a misunderstanding of what this case is about. They refer to this felon’s illegal possession of an illegal firearm as quote ‘mere possession’ of a firearm.”