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Aug-14-2012 14:38printcomments

Brady Center Urges Appeals Court to Dismiss Challenge to Hawaii Gun Laws

The Brady Center’s brief cites data showing that Hawaii’s strong gun laws have helped Hawaii achieve the lowest gun death rate in the nation.

Hawaii gun laws

(WASHINGTON DC) - The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence filed a brief today in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit urging the court to dismiss a challenge to Hawaii’s strong gun laws restricting the carrying of loaded guns in public.

In April, Senior Judge Alan C. Kay in the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii dismissed the lawsuit that is now on appeal, finding that Hawaii’s gun laws restricting public gun carrying are consistent with the Second Amendment.

“The answer to gun violence is not more gun violence. After shootings in Aurora and Oak Creek, Americans are saying loudly, ‘We are better than this,’ ” said Dan Gross, president of the Brady Center. “Hawaii understands that we are better than a nation that allows dangerous people to carry more guns on our streets and in our neighborhoods. We can respect the Second Amendment right to bear arms and still make communities safer for our children and families. ”

The lawsuit, Baker v. Kealoha, challenges Hawaii gun laws limiting public carrying of loaded guns to “exceptional case[s]” because of the severe risks posed by guns in public. The Brady Center’s brief urges the court to dismiss the lawsuit, citing legal rulings from around the nation that the Second Amendment is limited to a narrow right to possess guns in the home for self-defense and does not grant a right to carry loaded guns in public.

The Brady Center’s brief cites studies showing that guns in public expose all members of society to great risks, as guns are used far more often to kill and wound innocent victims than to kill and wound criminals, and guns are also used far more often to intimidate and threaten than they are used to thwart crimes.

The Brady Center’s brief also cites data showing that Hawaii’s strong gun laws have helped Hawaii achieve the lowest gun death rate in the nation, less than a third the national average.

The Brady Center is being represented by attorneys with the Brady Center’s Legal Action Project; Mark M. Murakami of Damon Key Leong Kupchak Hastert in Honolulu and; Jonathan Diesenhaus, Chartey Quarcoo, and Matt Sullivan from Hogan Lovells in Washington, D.C.


The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence is a national non-profit organization working to reduce gun deaths and injuries in America through education, research, and legal advocacy.  The programs of the Brady Center complement its sister organization, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

Dan Gross is the President of the Brady Campaign and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. A photo and more information about Dan Gross is available here.

For more insight on gun violence prevention, follow The Brady BlogFacebook Page and Twitter Account.




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Ronald von Pirch August 19, 2012 2:16 am (Pacific time)

Sorry DJ but this article is about gun laws. Thought your figures are showing gun cases only. If you sort out the rate of total annual homicides in Germany you should extract them. The truth is that if you subtract all homicides done by migrants in the name of honour and religion and very often within their own family, it would lower the amount quite a lot. Well, we Germans get used to it when a female teenager is been killed by her brother because she is living -a western style- which is the simple reason she has to die. And imagine that in such a case someone has to go just a few years into prison. Our justice is giving a bonus because it is the cultural behavior of these groups. Anyhow, I am total sure that if there would be as much weapons in private hand in Germany as inside USA there would be more homicides in Germany. May I add that no normal citizen in Germany is allowed to wear a gun in public and the gun has to be locked into a steel cabinet inside the house. I think it might be interessting to check the figures of the Czech Republic. Have heard that they have gun law that citizens can buy weapons legal and wearing them in public unseen under their dress.

Ronald von Pirch August 17, 2012 10:40 pm (Pacific time)

Big laugh about the figures of homicide in Germany. Is that the annual amount? If so I am sure it is not the amount of homicides / murder done with guns. That would mean roughly 2 per day. More than this I had a real laugh about the message that Germany should be a fourth size big as USA. Do you call that investigative journalism? Germany is 358 Thousand sqare kilometers but Texas is 696 Thousand sqare kilometers. Germany has 82 million people and very hard gun law. Someone cant buy aussault rifles semi automatic and full auto rifles are banned since after the war. But yes, you can get a lot of stuff illegal, but no law or restriction can prevent things like in Aurora etc.
PS : I am German

DJ: Where's the humour? In the last year reported by UNODC reported that Germany had 690 homicides which is, in fact, just under an average of two/day. The US had 12,996 which is an average of about 35/day. Doesn't surprise me and is not a source of humour.

BTW, these homicide rates are not gun-rates, but rather a measure of how violent the society is. By this measure, the US is 5.25 times more violent. 

Anonymous August 17, 2012 6:39 am (Pacific time)


Anonymous August 17, 2012 6:10 am (Pacific time)

The homicide rates posted - that's homicides including non-firearms. I'd like to see non-suicide firearm related homicide rates per capita among many countries.

Also, Russia and Mexio have much stricter firearm laws than America, yet have much higher homicide rates per capita (using your source).

Perhaps the homicide rate has less to do with gun rights and is indicitive of aonther problem? Maybe illegal immigration and lack of integration with sociecty? Maybe lack of education due to poverty and less access to abortion? Maybe the freedom of speech and unreasonable search and seizure leads to higher crime?

DJ: I like your argument. Perhaps higher homicide rates in the U.S. are more attributable to other problems rather than gun rights. I think that gun rights are more a symptom, than a cause of American violence. As I continue with this comment, I'm prompted to do a full article on the topic. Check back. I expect to post it over the weekend.

Anonymous August 16, 2012 4:56 pm (Pacific time)

come up with all the out of context numbers ya want dont like guns?
Molon Labe...people like you are too stupid to argue with.
By the way, I checked your journalistic background and there is none. I guess Tim will take any stray as long as they work for free? Living off the government are ya? I checked your background. Nothing, you are a wanna be loser that picks subjects to write about, with false facts, to get attention. I suggest everyone quit feeding this ignorant, nothing arse living in a basement somewhere. Enough is enough daniel, find something else to do, you are a joke.
Or, you can simply edit this or delete/cenosr this as you have done in the past, ya sissy loser hiding under the government mommy's skirt...wimp, the world economy is on the edge of collapse, and canada will fall with it, and when it does, the criminals in canada will walk all over you ya stupid sob..
delete and censor daniel, it is what you do best, besides what I noted above..

DJ: To all the civilized, progressive Americans who read Salem-News: This person, who does not have the integrity to even use his own name, is the kind of person who is bringing your country down. His red-neck ignorance and lack of education means that he can only see his limited view of the world, totally unable to understand that other people have legitimate, albeit different,  views of the world. He thinks those who don't agree with his narrow, political and philosophical views have something wrong with them.

Molon Labe? No thanks, You can have them. Civilized peoples do not need violence or the threat of violence to validate their place on the planet. 

Anonymous August 16, 2012 2:59 pm (Pacific time)

You, Editor, are confusing anons. DJ, you did indeed refer to "per capita" numbers. But you would be pretty much dead wrong since US deaths are about 3 per 100,000 and those countries whose rates are "not nearly approaching that of the U.S. on a per capita basis." are about 1 to 3 deaths per 100,000 per the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. So, the only way you'd be correct is if expressed it as number of criminals/crimes total as a percentage of total population. And of course the US, being far more populated would have more criminals. BTW, DJ...why not address the fact that Sweden having a fully armed populace actually DOES work. Despite your obviously sarcastic remark to issue a handgun to every child and see how that works in 20 yars.

If you anons had the integrity to actually use your names, there wouldn't be any confusion.

One thing I've noticed about the gun advocates is a striking lack of awareness. Sweden? You're confusing yourself with Switzerland. I suppose you don't look past the first letter of the country's name.

Here are the statistics. It will be amusing to watch you twisting yourself into a pretzel as you try to refute the numbers:

Canada 554 homicides; one tenth the size of US so that extrapolated the US should have about 5,540 homicides. Instead the US had 12,996, or a homicide rate2.3 times greater than Canada.

Germany 690 homicides; About one fourth the size of US so that extrapolated the US should have about 2,760 homicides. Instead the US had 12,996, or a homicide rate 4.7 times greater than Germany.

UK 722 homicides; About one fifth the size of US so that extrapolated the US should have about 3,610 homicides. Instead the US had 12,996, or a homicide rate3.6 times greater than UK.

We could go down the list of developed nations and see the same kind of results. In all these countries gun control is part of the national ethos. The belief that more guns means a safer society is a fantasy that only Americans entertain. 

Daniel Johnson August 16, 2012 2:20 pm (Pacific time)

Hey! Gun-nuts

read this:

Anonymous August 16, 2012 1:10 pm (Pacific time)

To the editor and DJ...

All those other countries like the UK or Germany have seemingly lower crime becuase they have lower populations. If 1% of 1000 commit a crime then it looks like less crime than 1% of 10,000, but it's still only 1%. As far as Japan being crime free, that has nothing to do with its gun laws. Japan's "justice" system is brutal and torturous. They can hold you for months on nothing, they can put you in a cell and stop you from sitting or standing or laying down (essentially forcing you to crouch all day long every day), they can torture confessions from you and use them against you in court, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. So, let's not act like Japan is crime free because of gun control or some Code of Honor. It's because the Japanese people are terrified of the police, and before you say "good idea" think about how such police and justice system would handle your spouse or children. Even the UN has decided that Japan's Justice system is torturous and violates Human rights. It's funny that you sarcastically recommend issuing a gun to every child at birth. In Sweden they issue a SIG 550 (scary black rifle) to every male age 20-30 and you don't see that country spiraling down into a gun-infested shooting zone. And editor, adding "um" like you did in your statement only makes you sound smug and truthfully you sound over-defensive calling an honest critique an insult.

Editor: Are you suggesting that you did not approach this in a way that was totally an insulting?  The 'copy and paste' line, we put in thousands of hours writing stories here, we also carry press releases, like all media.  

DJ: You clearly don't understand. It's not about absolute numbers, but about the percentage per capita. You use the idea of 1% as if it means something., The homicide statistics I present are per 100,000. That means that there are more homicides for every 100,000 Americans than there are per 100,000 Canadians, Germans, Brits, etc.

These are real numbers and not a matter of "opinion" or "interpretation". 

Anonymous August 16, 2012 6:55 am (Pacific time)

Those who continually offer their criticism regarding America's 2nd Amendment and our desire for all non-criminal citizens to have firearms are intellectually barren in their [obvious] feckless arguements.

DJ: Would you (or any of your colleagues) be interested in writing an article explaining how America,  with  a Second Amendment is a better country (safer, higher quality of life, etc.) than those countries like Canada, Germany, Denmark, France, etc. without a SA equivalent. We'll run it unedited (except for grammar and typos). Contact me at Here's your chance.

Derek Scammon August 15, 2012 7:38 pm (Pacific time)

Copy-and-pasting the Brady Campaign's press releases counts as reporting in Salem? That's a shame.

Editor: Um... it was one of a great number of articles, many authored by our team, published that day.  The only insult you can come up with is this?  I'd say you are way low on ammunition, and yes, Salem people are allowed to receive the news like anybody else.

BHirsh August 15, 2012 11:10 am (Pacific time)

It's not the gun laws that keep Hawaii mellow, it's the Maui Wowie. Anyway, Woollard v. Sheridan, combined with the case against Hawaii, is destined to eliminate "may issue" laws entirely as impermissible infringements of the right to arms for self-defense. Only a matter of time. Get ready. Get READY.

j+ August 14, 2012 7:20 pm (Pacific time)

To parady the commonaity;
"Guns do not kill people. Criminals with guns kill people."
Allowing the State to monopolize armaments does not prevent crime, but it does fast-track authoritarian rule. Allowing average, law-abiding citizens (who always must pass background checks more stringent than normal to carry firearms) is the only true legitimate societal defense against violent crime.

DJ: I don't understand your argument. Canada, UK, Germany, Italy, Japan, et al all have far fewer guns and far lower violence. They also have violent crimes but not nearly approaching that of the U.S. on a per capita basis. None of those countries are on any "fast track" to authoritarian rule. Is there something pathological in the American psyche that bends them to violence and responding to that violence with the belief that  more guns is in some magical way the road to a solution?

The best solution in that regard is to pass legislation that would have the government issue a handgun to every child at birth. Within about 20 years you would have a fully armed populace. You can try that and see if it works. 

August 14, 2012 2:50 pm (Pacific time)

In Hawaii, the criminals still get guns easily. The honest, law-abiding citizens are the only ones who are precluded from getting them.

Anonymous August 14, 2012 2:44 pm (Pacific time)

The Brady Center needs to mention the obama admin and eric holder..tens of thousands of high power firearms, non-registered, spread thru-out Mexico, thousands making their way back into the U.S. to drug gangs...Brady Center should also talk about de-criminaizing drugs, drugs being illegal cause much more death...But then again, Brady Center is nothing but schill for the new world order, and could not care less about death and destruction, all they care about is the agenda their bosses pay/bribe them to promote.

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