Eminent Domain & the Threat to Private Property

EMINENT DOMAIN POWER FOR A NON-UTILITY PRIVATE COMPANY?  Update: This bill was ratified and signed by the governor with the provision that eminent domain would not apply to private, for-profit pipeline companies. This provision will sunset in June of 2019. On Tuesday, October 20, a Senate Judiciary subcommittee met to discuss and take testimony on S.868, […]

Emergency Gun Bans & the Constitution

● Lawsuit alleges city acted improperly in gun ban. ● Attorney General opinion agrees. ● City’s ban runs against Second Amendment, court precedent. ● Flouting constitutionality a troubling trend in state, local bills. Of the rights enumerated in the U.S. Constitution, few have been contested as fiercely as American’s Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Throughout the […]

Free Speech, Electioneering, & Constitutionality: A South Carolina Debate

HOW A BILL IN THE S.C. SENATE WOULD RUN UP AGAINST THE U.S. CONSTITUTION AND U.S. SUPREME COURT PRECEDENT [Click here for a printable .pdf version of this report, and here for a short fact sheet.] First, the background. The South Carolina legislature is poised to pass new regulations of political speech. While the proposed law is being spun as […]

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Is South Carolina at War with the Homeless?

EQUALITY OF THE LAW OUGHT TO MEAN SOMETHING South Carolina has a homeless problem. That’s especially true in Columbia. The problem isn’t that the state and city are overwhelmed by an enormous homeless population – although the numbers in both cases are significant. The problem, rather, is that both the state and city have passed […]

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A Return to Non-Adversarial Policing?

FEDERAL FUNDING HAS ENCOURAGED LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENTS TO MILITARIZE. THERE’S AN EASY WAY TO CHANGE THAT. The image of the public servant police officer committed to protecting the average citizen has taken a major hit this week, with the overbearing response by local police to protests in Ferguson, Missouri. The response – which looked more […]

Government Transparency vs. Individual Privacy

IN SOUTH CAROLINA, THE TROUBLE WITH THE PUBLIC SECTOR IS THAT IT’S BECOMING PRIVATE . . . AND VICE VERSA It’s common shorthand to refer to the governmental and non-governmental workforces as the “public” and “private” sector. These terms make sense, too. Yet in recent weeks South Carolina state government seems bent on reversing their […]

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Why S.C. Needs a Constitutional Carry Law

MORE FREEDOM, LESS CRIME A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. —U.S. Constitution, Second Amendment Despite the plain meaning of “shall not be infringed,” the fundamental right to carry a firearm for protection has been […]

Reforming S.C.’s Eminent Domain Law

THE GOVERNMENT CAN TAKE YOUR LAND FOR ALMOST ANY REASON. HERE’S WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT. In June of 2005 the United States Supreme Court issued its ruling in the now infamous case of Kelo v. New London. In brief, the court ruled in a 5-4 decision that U.S. government bodies could legally seize property under […]

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Firearm Freedom: How to Achieve It

FREEDOM TO OWN GUNS ISN’T THE PROBLEM — SOUTH CAROLINIANS SHOULDN’T HAVE TO PRETEND IT IS South Carolina is one of the most gun friendly states in America, according to conventional wisdom. This may or may not be true when it comes to citizens attitudes, but it certainly isn’t reflected in the state’s firearm laws that, […]

Banning E-Cigs: WWFD?

‘SOME PEOPLE DON’T LIKE IT’ ISN’T A SUFFICIENT REASON TO CURTAIL INDIVIDUAL LIBERTY “Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will,” wrote Thomas Jefferson in a letter of 1819, “within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the limits of the law,’ because law is often […]