The man who fought D.C.’s gun laws

August 11, 2014

Tom Palmer, general director of Atlas Global Initiative for Free Trade, Peace and Prosperity, was one of the plantiffs in the Supreme Court case that overturned the District’s handgun ban. Now he’s sued again, this time for the right to carry his gun outside his home. (2009 File Photo/Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)

To legal scholars, the case that promises to end the District’s ban on carrying handguns in public is known as Palmer v. District of Columbia. Tom G. Palmer himself is hardly an abstraction, however. A Oxford-trained, libertarian political ethicist who has lived in the city for more than two decades, Palmer tells The Washington Post’s Spencer Hsu that he’s a “firearms-owning peacenik” who just wants to allow vulnerable people to defend themselves. In response to Palmer’s victory in federal district court, the city is now pondering whether to appeal and/or how to rewrite its gun laws to comply with the ruling. Said Palmer: “It’s not like they have to sit down in a philosopher’s chair and dream something up. … If they decide to make it so onerous that they seem to comply in form, but in fact make it impossible to exercise, they will see us in court again.”

In other news:

Jim Brady becomes D.C.’s 71st murder of 2014 after Virginia medical examiner rules death a homicide (PostWRC-TVAPHomicide Watch)

Streetcar operators in training learn that driver ignorance may be their biggest challenge (Post)

Courtland Milloy rides a bike downtown, gains a modicum of empathy for urban cyclists (Post column)

The highly-regarded Rocketship charter-school chain lands in Anacostia (Post)

Colby King calls out Jim Graham, Muriel Bowser and Vincent Orange for poor oversight (Post column)

If littering tickets are any guide, few of those ticketed for marijuana possession will be paying their fines (WaTimes)

Jeff DeWitt settles in, lays out a customer-service-oriented plan for OCFO (Post)

The Reeves Center’s glory days may be past, but many think it’s still better than luxury condos (Post)

DDOT van parks in bike lane; city responds, “WE DONT TICKET OUR OWN” (DofD)

Jack Evans is the third council member to have Emily Miller pore over his record of parking tickets (WTTG-TV)

Campaign finance reports are due at midnight (WAMU-FM)

Roosevelt High rehab uncovers 80-year-old WPA frescoes (WRC-TV)

Region’s cabbies fight back against Uber and its ilk (Post)

How DHCD dealt with Museum Square (Housing Complex)

While reporting on “SketchFactor” app, Channel 9 crew is robbed in Petworth (WUSA-TV)

Is that app racist? (WAMU-FMDCist)

City-funded “Produce Plus” program tries to get fresh fruits and vegetables on low-income residents’ tables (Post)

Will a bigger, cleaner, newer Steak N’ Egg still be Steak ‘N Egg? (Post column)

AAA invokes technicalities to allow drivers to run red lights with impunity (WJLA-TV)

Dondre Dyer, 23, is shot to death Friday night in Park View (Post)

Quadruple shooting in Eckington late Friday (Post)

Six shot in Southwest early Sunday, none fatally (PostAP)

Nine years for man convicted of stabbing Washington Hospital Center employee to death (Post)

Accomplice in Harry Thomas Jr. fraud has to pay up for what Harry stole, judge rules (Loose Lips)

Vacant three-story home collapses in Shaw (Post)

Watch thieves loot Cardozo High (WRC-TV)

Don’t give up on Frank Gehry’s Eisenhower Memorial design (Post editorial)

David Grosso applauds the Gray Lady for its new pro-pot stance (Post letter)

L.A. official will build second phase of Silver Line (Dr. Gridlock)

Galleries are coming back to Georgetown (Post)

Potential “New Corcoran” board members: Tim Gunn, Tony Williams, Kevin Durant? (Arts Desk)

Cardinal Donald Wuerl punts on the Redskins name debate (Post Magazine)

“Does DC have an ‘affordable housing problem’ or an ‘affordable (and trendy) housing problem’?” (CHotR)

Anacostia gets a 7-Eleven (CHotR)

Surprise: Some of the Georgetown BID’s $100 “lawn chairs” are getting stolen (WRC-TV)

Mike DeBonis covers Congress and national politics for The Washington Post. He previously covered D.C. politics and government from 2007 to 2015.
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Mike DeBonis · August 8, 2014

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