It is the start of 2024 and we are back in State court over in Harney County today. There was a hearing regarding the previous ruling from Judge Raschio, that came out back at the end of November. I have published numerous blog posts over the past year and a half about Measure 114. Since the very beginning of this process. I have set out to present all of the information about this fatally flawed from the angle of a gun owner. One of the hardest parts about this story is how the entire measure has been represented as a benefit to Oregonians by supporters, the media, and the attorneys trying the case. Oregon gun owners have never had any sort of voice in this debacle. It has been and will continue to be my goal to present all of the information that will be used to counter the anti-gun narrative presented by most media outlets. I have made a name for myself as an independent journalist. It has garnered me some good and bad attention. I will not be deterred though, the people of Oregon deserve to have their voices heard. My views come through the lens of a gun owner, an Instructor, the President of a Safety Organization, and lastly a person who carries a gun every single day for personal protection.

We received word a few weeks ago that the attorneys for the State of Oregon, the defendants in the case in Harney County had objected to a few points in the Judge’s ruling. This prevented the official record from being closed. When this happened it prevented Measure 114, as written, either being enforced, implemented, or appealed. There was a new hearing scheduled for the second day of the new year. In this hearing, the defendants had 7 different points that they objected to in the original ruling from Judge Raschio. All of these points, never really improved their arguments. They were mostly an annoyance to all parties involved. There is a saying that “you can’t put lipstick on a pig and not expect it to still be a pig.” Their arguments were just that, lipstick and from the outside looking in they were a waste of time and taxpayer funds. As much time that I have spent over the past year following this case. One thing that has always struck me, is how detached from reality. There is arrogance about the legal team with what seems like a detest for law-abiding citizens. It is sad to watch. Banning our ability to defend ourselves, isn’t going to help keep the state any safer. It is delusional and they are perpetuating this problem, but they have a job to do. They are playing their role.

We went on the record at 10:01 am as Judge Raschio called the courtroom to order. The hearing was held online and both parties were presenting their arguments from their prospective offices. The first point to be argued was the FBI’s part of the background check process. Back in September, the FBI had still not said whether they would help with the background check process. Leading up to the trial in Harney County, they said that Measure 114 did NOT meet their requirements to help perform the checks because of how flawed the measure is. In October the FBI had an about-face on their previous position. They reluctantly gave in and tentatively ruled that they would help perform the background checks required for a person to receive a permit to purchase. All of this information came to light after the trial and the state’s attorneys tried and failed miserably to get this point reintroduced as a victory for their position. The Judge quickly denied their objection. 1-0 gun owners!

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The next objection was a bone of contention for many of us. In the verbiage of Measure 114, there is a 30-day deadline that the state WILL issue a permit to purchase. This means once the average Oregon complies with the process and hops through all of the hoops needed to just apply for a permit to purchase. The state must approve it within that 30-day window. There is a tremendous amount of moving parts to make this a reality. One thing that isn’t mentioned is how a “right delayed is a right denied.” This 30-day window doesn’t take into account if a person is denied and how their due process rights are then violated. A person would have to go in front of a Circuit Court judge for a review. This creates a situation where a person could be in a “legal” limbo denying their 2A rights. Luckily for us, the Judge sided with our liberties. Objection #2, Denied! 2-0 gun owners!

The third part of the judge’s ruling that was being objected to was the impact on Measure 114 public safety. The Attorneys for the state, throughout this process, have tried desperately to interject emotion as a way to circumvent the rule of law. Our Attorney Anthony Aeillo did a masterful job remaining professional all while giving them the proverbial middle finger. It was really fun to watch. The State once again failed to produce a compelling argument that violating the rights of law-abiding citizens would help prevent mass shootings. The cherry on top of the Sunday was when Judge Raschio made the comment which was cited in his original ruling, that “mass shootings are statistically uncommon.” Objection #3, DENIED! Oregon gun owners 3-0!

When we got to the fourth objection, the State went on the offensive against Dr. William English and the study that he authored. This study is one of the most in-depth studies ever done on American gun ownership. The State failed once again at trying to make a case that a study that had actual data should be discounted and struck from the record. They stated that since it was not peer-reviewed, that shouldn’t be attributed as factual. Instead, they would prefer the court take the testimony from a lady who is a paid employee of an anti-gun organization, who lost a father in a shooting as factual information. While it is quite unfortunate that she lost a loved one. It is this emotional-based argument that is being interjected to effect the rule of law. The 4th objection was DENIED and Tony was really on a roll. Oregon gun owners 4-0!

The following 3 objections were just nitpicking the judge’s ruling. There was no truly noteworthy information, besides the judge asking Harry Wilson “Why did they file a request for this hearing?” That was funny because I could watch them squirm. After all, they were uncomfortable. It was from my perspective that this hearing was a complete and utter failure for the State of Oregon’s case. They did nothing to improve their position. The only thing that was accomplished by this hearing was to up their number of billable hours to further waste our resources. I want to commend our Attorney, Anthony Aiello on how he once again stood tall against the constant barrage from the other side. I believe that the record will now finally close and Measure 114 will head to the appellant court. If it passes this checkpoint, it will head to the Oregon State Supreme Court. It will most likely take years for this to happen. I know the other side is banking on a higher court reversing the lower court ruling. They are salivating, waiting for it. I pray every day that we serve them up another loss and this bill goes into the trash where it belongs. Until then, I will keep you posted if anything changes. I appreciate you all following me throughout this process and using me as a trusted source. I will continue to give it to you straight, from the lens of a gun owner. Until next time. Be safe!