Legal Issues

7th Circuit Court of Appeals Sides With Gun Grabbers

The Second Amendment is my gun permit

Some would say the sky is falling, others believe that the earth is crumbling beneath their feet. For me, I am just glad that I own guns, because I think the whole world has gone crazy. Politics are crazier than ever, parts of the world are at war (and others are on the brink of being sucked in), demonstrations are breaking out in the streets of just about every major city and college campus… and even the courts — State and Federal — cannot agree about the law. 

In the Bruen decision (New York), the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) came down clearly on the side of gun owners and the Second Amendment. It went so far as to not only rule the citizens had a right to carry a gun outside of the home, but to also set a new standard for gun laws that seek to limit the Second Amendment rights of gun owners.

Mikhail Kalashnikov holding his own assault rifle.
Mikhail Kalashnikov holding his own ‘assault rifle.’ The most famous firearm design of all time, the AK-47.

Then, California struck. It seemed to snub its nose at the SCOTUS decision. Fortunately, United States District Court Judge Robert Benitez ruled in Duncan v. Bonta that California’s ban on magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds violated the Second Amendment. His reasoning was the most interesting part — and a must read

Gun owners had a few minutes to collectively breathe a sigh of relief, thinking the courts had finally started stepping up to protect our rights. After all SCOTUS’ new guidelines clearly changed the calculus for determining whether a restriction to our Second Amendment rights were outweighed by a need for the public safety.

However, in January of 2023, the Illinois Legislature passed the Protect Illinois Communities Act (“PICA”), which banned more than 190 commonly owned arms by mislabeling them “assault weapons.” It also banned commonly owned magazines by mislabeling them “large capacity.” Pro Second Amendment groups immediately responded with court filings.

Initially, the courts issued an injunction that allowed Illinoisans to purchase the banned items under an injunction that suspended enforcement. Citizens flocked to retailers while they could and secured the firearms and accessories the state attempted to ban. Most thought this was an opportune window for a proverbial “last chance.”

Then, Illinois reared its ugly head last week. In a 2–1 vote, a three-judge panel of the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals threw out a lower-court injunction imposed against the firearms restrictions in one set of cases and affirmed decisions keeping the law intact in another batch. Basically, what happened was the appellate panel held that like other constitutionally protected freedoms, Second Amendment gun rights were subject to ‘certain limits’ that can be legitimately imposed by the government. While true, this ruling clearly flies in the face of the Bruen decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. It also fails to account for the requirement of being “consistent with this nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation” to pass muster.

Governor JB Pritzker wagging his finger
It’s like the states are saying, “The hell with Supreme Court. We are going to pass more restrictive laws!” And the Courts are handing down conflicting decisions creating a patchwork of laws and restrictions.

Writing for the 7th Circuit, Judge Diane Wood (appointed to the bench by President Clinton), said supporters of Illinois’ gun law “have a strong likelihood of success” in further litigation considering the “tools of history and tradition to which the Supreme Court directed us” in the New York case and a similar challenge in the District of Columbia. 

I guess that means the means test set forth by the Supreme Court can be ignored if the judge simply states that she ‘believes’ she is right, and case will be won eventually?

To make it worse, lawmakers are claiming any firearms or “high-capacity” magazines purchased under the injunction are illegal and the owners may be subject to prosecution.

PMAG Gen 2 30-Round
Even the government defines the 30-round magazine as “standard-capacity” when issuing purchase requisitions.

So, the 9th Circuit is saying that banning so-called assault weapons and high-capacity (standard) magazines is unconstitutional, while the 7th Circuit is ignoring the means testing set forth by SCOTUS and ruling in favor of banning the so-called assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. And what does that mean to you me? You know, the average gun owner. 

Confusion, panic, fear of running afoul of the law. After all, gun laws only apply to law-abiding citizens — by definition. I was fortunate enough to have moved out of Illinois a few years ago, so the silliness does not currently affect me as much. I live in a free state, a gun-friendly free state. Also, I have a safe full of AR-15s, AK-47s, and all the other guns the anti-gunners want to ban. Over the years, I have collected dozens upon dozens of 30-round magazines too. Not that I need that many, but I have seen the panic in the past. I live under the ‘I’d rather have them and not need them then need them and not be able to buy them. Besides, picking up a few extras here and there never put a real dent in the budget. 

Some in Illinois where lucky enough to escape the state’s draconian boot to the throat with a temporary injunction. Citizens went on shopping sprees to stash an evil AR-15 or three in the gun safe before the court struct again. Sales of 30-round magazines instantly shot up. Those of you living is states or cities that are banning firearms and accessories or threatening to ban them should learn from the plight of gun owners in Illinois.

In the spirit of ‘one upmanship’ let’s look at accessories. Under California law, I legally owned a SKS rifle. It was legal with a bayonet attached. I could swap the fixed magazine for a detachable magazine. If I did not like the stock, I could swap it to a Monte Carlo (thumbhole) stock. All of these were legal modifications, as well as a host of others — individually. However, any three from a list suddenly made the rifle an assault weapon. So, I could have a bayonet, but not with a detachable magazine too. Or I could have the detachable magazine, but not with a thumbhole stock. The law made no sense, but who ever accused anti-gun lawmakers of having common sense?

Prepare Now

Look for a window, or better yet, before lawmakers levy these (what I believe to be) unconstitutional laws and purchase the guns you want or feel you may need. Secure a supply of 30-round magazines and enough ammo to fill them. Sure, this may be an exercise in panic buying. However, it may also be your last chance (at least for several years) to own an AR-15 or AK-47, and to adequately feed your rifle or pistol with a magazine of sufficient capacity should the wolf come huffing and puffing at your door in the middle of the night.


When it comes to a crisis, it is too late to try and put your seatbelt on before the collision. The same can be said for firearm ownership. If you wait until lawmakers start pressing their boots to your neck, it will be too late. On the other hand, you could defend your home and loved ones with rocks from a slingshot, but I would not recommend it. You can bet that those same lawmakers have armed security protecting them and their loved ones… So why should you be limited?

Where do you think the courts will ultimately land on the opposing decisions of the 7th and 9th Circuit Court of Appeals? Which guns or accessories do you recommend fellow supporters of the Second Amendment grab while they still can? Share your answers in the Comment section.

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Comments (11)

  1. Nice to know about what’s happening but why is this company buying into it all and not selling ammo or parts because of “liability” with restrictive states like Washington?
    How can you report on things but follow the governance even if it’s not law?
    Sad where this is all going

  2. 1968 the Fire Arms Identification Card for the State of Illinois. Only four nation wide. Not sufficient in 2023 because the government could not find the deviation between ” Violent Criminal’s ” and daily checking of the FOID system of the 2 Million card holders.

  3. If our politicians have to have security personal to protect them on a 24 hour daily basis, who carry weapons of their choice from pistols to automatic weapons, then the politicians should provide the same security to the public who provide them, the politicians, their lively hood. Just think where they would be without us, no money and no protection. What a shame, huh.

  4. i don`t care what gun laws are passed, pro or con. i only got one gun & it`s broke. All i use it for is a sinker on my fish line.

  5. When the balance changes in the Supreme Court ( lose Thomas )
    look out – have NO real faith in the new justices when push comes
    to shove and they are at the forefront

  6. The banning of “assault weapons” is just another way for the government to try to control the American people. For some pathetic reason Joe Biden and his band of misfits thinks Americans will try to overthrow the government. I spent 25 years wearing a gun and badge, and I’ve never had a law abiding citizen try to go after people with there weapons. Lastly the only people a gun ban will affect is the law abiding gun owners.

  7. Advice from a cranky old man(I am 83 years old) Been around for a long time and learned a lot, my advice, “If you have them, keep your mouth shut a and don’t tell anybody!”

  8. Registration is also a requirement which is not enacted to penalize the criminals, but to go after the otherwise law abiding citizens. Proof of that is the fact that a convicted felon CAN NOT be charged with having an unregistered firearm.

  9. It used to be the 9th Circus Court, now it seems it is the 7th Circus Court. Thank GOD that the Supreme Court _seems_ to have a majority of Constitutionalists for now.

  10. Registration is confiscation. The state of Illinois plans to confiscate so-called ‘assault weapons’ with the assistance of the Illinois State Police. It may not be next year, but it will happen or at least try in the next few years.

    I also believe the non-compliance will be staggering, just as the braces were.

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