Breaking: Court finds Second Amendment protects individual right to bear arms; Update: Obama’s gun-grabber credentials revisited; Update: Obama supported D.C. ban in February?

posted at 10:19 am on June 26, 2008 by Allahpundit

Just across at SCOTUS Blog. 5-4, which means Kennedy was the deciding vote — or, if you prefer, Alito was the deciding vote. Would O’Connor or Harriet Miers have voted the same way? If nothing else, Bush at least delivered this.

Stand by for the opinion.

Update: The first AP report says the right extends to “self-defense and hunting.” And here’s an update. Hmmm:

The court’s 5-4 ruling strikes down the District of Columbia’s 32-year-old ban on handguns as incompatible with gun rights under the Second Amendment. The decision goes further than even the Bush administration wanted, but probably leaves most firearms laws intact.

Update: Here’s the opinion at SCOTUS Blog. They’re getting hammered by Drudge so e-mail us if you can’t access it there and I’ll upload it elsewhere.

Update: A key passage from the syllabus. If you had your eye on a machine gun, think again:

Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose: For example, concealed weapons prohibitions have been upheld under the Amendment or state analogues. The Court’s opinion should not be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms. Miller’s holding that the sorts of weapons protected are those “in common use at the time” finds support in the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons.

Also from the syllabus: “Because Heller conceded at oral argument that the D. C. licensing law is permissible if it is not enforced arbitrarily and capriciously, the Court assumes that a license will satisfy his prayer for relief and does not address the licensing requirement.”

Update: According to How Appealing, Scalia’s opinion cites no fewer than three law review articles written by Eugene Volokh.

Update: The first 50+ pages are devoted to historical analysis. Skip down to section III on page 54 for a discussion of limitations on the right. Here’s the whole thing, with citations omitted, for ease of reference:

Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited. From Blackstone through the 19th-century cases, commentators and courts routinely explained that the right was not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose… For example, the majority of the 19th-century courts to consider the question held that prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons were lawful under the Second Amendment or state analogues… Although we do not undertake an exhaustive historical analysis today of the full scope of the Second Amendment, nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.

We also recognize another important limitation on the right to keep and carry arms. Miller said, as we have explained, that the sorts of weapons protected were those “in common use at the time.”… We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of “dangerous and unusual weapons.”… It may be objected that if weapons that are most useful in military service—M-16 rifles and the like—may be banned, then the Second Amendment right is completely detached from the prefatory clause. But as we have said, the conception of the militia at the time of the Second Amendment’s ratification was the body of all citizens capable of military service, who would bring the sorts of lawful weapons that they possessed at home to militia duty. It may well be true today that a militia, to be as effective as militias in the 18th century, would require sophisticated arms that are highly unusual in society at large. Indeed, it may be true that no amount of small arms could be useful against modern-day bombers and tanks. But the fact that modern developments have limited the degree of fit between the prefatory clause and the protected right cannot change our interpretation of the right.

So as I understand this, you have a right to own a handgun, a shotgun, a rifle or some other weapon you’d buy either for home defense or hunting, since that’s how a colonial-era militia operated. (Live by the originalist sword, die by the originalist sword.) I’ll have to check the regulations, but offhand I don’t think this is much different from how the system works now in New York City: As I recall, they make you pay a $500 fee but they won’t reject your handgun application unless they have some sort of good cause.

What about the boldfaced part having to do with concealed carry “in sensitive places,” though? Does that mean you have a right to carry in non-sensitive places?

Update: SCOTUS Blog notes that the opinion doesn’t explicitly say that this ruling applies to the states. The gun ban being challenged was from D.C., a federal jurisdiction, so in theory there’s now an open subsidiary question of whether the Second Amendment was “incorporated” by the Fourteenth Amendment to apply against the states as well. Don’t expect anyone to make a big deal of it, though: Almost all other rights in the Bill of Rights have already been “incorporated” and the logic of the decision here doesn’t lend itself to any obvious distinction between the feds and the states.

Update: The obligatory applause from McCain:

Today’s decision is a landmark victory for Second Amendment freedom in the United States. For this first time in the history of our Republic, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms was and is an individual right as intended by our Founding Fathers. I applaud this decision as well as the overturning of the District of Columbia’s ban on handguns and limitations on the ability to use firearms for self-defense.

“Unlike Senator Obama, who refused to join me in signing a bipartisan amicus brief, I was pleased to express my support and call for the ruling issued today. Today’s ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller makes clear that other municipalities like Chicago that have banned handguns have infringed on the constitutional rights of Americans. Unlike the elitist view that believes Americans cling to guns out of bitterness, today’s ruling recognizes that gun ownership is a fundamental right — sacred, just as the right to free speech and assembly.

This ruling does not mark the end of our struggle against those who seek to limit the rights of law-abiding citizens. We must always remain vigilant in defense of our freedoms. But today, the Supreme Court ended forever the specious argument that the Second Amendment did not confer an individual right to keep and bear arms.

Update: Here are the New York City gun regs. Scalia emphasizes on pages 58-59 that they’re not ruling on the D.C. licensing scheme; cities can still make you register after today, although there are bound to be lawsuits now challenging each distrinct’s licensing requirements. As I suspected, in NYC you can basically own a gun for home use as a matter of right if you provide a birth certificate, prove you’re a citizen, pay the fee, and have a (relatively) clean criminal record. If you want to carry or to keep a gun at the workplace, you have to show “necessity.” Whether that’s still constitutional will be determined at a later date, which is why Geraghty’s point about the importance of having conservative judges on the bench to fill in the blanks of this ruling going forward is important.

Update: I must be misreading the regs because this New York Sun piece from March says the NYPD has discretion to deny handgun licenses. In all cases, though? Even to a law-abiding citizen for home use? Not anymore, in any event.

Update: The quote of the day comes not from Scalia but from Stevens in dissent:

The Court properly disclaims any interest in evaluating the wisdom of the specific policy choice challenged in this case, but it fails to pay heed to a far more important policy choice—the choice made by the Framers themselves. The Court would have us believe that over 200 years ago, the Framers made a choice to limit the tools available to elected officials wishing to regulate civilian uses of weapons, and to authorize this Court to use the common-law process of case-by-case judicial lawmaking to define the contours of acceptable gun control policy. Absent compelling evidence that is nowhere to be found in the Court’s opinion, I could not possibly conclude that the Framers made such a choice.

Yeah, that’s … the whole scheme of the Constitution, isn’t it? To limit the power of government? Or does that principle only apply to Article II anymore?

Update: Here’s a shrewd piece from TNR back in March predicting that the decision won’t make much of a difference except in the most gun-grabby districts. Quote: “For all but the hardest-core gun lovers, prudence and public safety ultimately limit libertarianism–and the justices don’t seem inclined to dive off a cliff and read the amendment so as to permit individual ownership of upper-end military hardware… Outside of Washington D.C., in other words, a revitalized Second Amendment would largely forbid what nobody was seriously contemplating anyway: bans on common weapons for the recreational and self-protective uses of law-abiding people.” Yeah, if even the laws in New York City are already (mostly) consonant with the decision, then it’s not some huge game-changer in practice — yet. With the coming blue tide in November, though, who knows? It’s nice to have it on the books before anyone gets any ideas.

Update: Be sure to read Geraghty’s post about Obama’s history with gun control, before he was deciding that statements on the subject by his campaign were “inartful.” A lefty friend sent me the link to the ABC story this morning about that with a note saying, “Didn’t he sit on some gun-control organization’s board?” So he did.

Obama was named a director of the Joyce Foundation in late 1994, and remained in that position until late 2002.

During Obama’s tenure with the Joyce Foundation, donations to anti-gun groups increased dramatically. For example, in 1997 and 1998 the Violence Policy Center received $221,000 and $360,000 from the Foundation; those grants and donations increased to $1 million in 2000 and $800,000 in 2002. In all, during Obama’s tenure, the group received $15 million from the Joyce Foundation…

Lest anyone think I’m mischaracterizing their objective analysis, note that their web site touts themselves as “the most aggressive group in the gun control movement.” Also note studies like their one from 2000 entitled, “Unsafe in Any Hands: Why America Needs to Ban Handguns,” which declared the idea that the Constitution would forbid a national handgun ban a “pure myth.” Also note the organization’s subtly-titled book, Every Handgun is Aimed at You: The Case for Banning Handguns.)

Update: Politico claims St. Barack’s reversal on the “inartful” statement his spokesman made last November about supporting the D.C. ban is more recent than thought. Ben Smith doesn’t offer a date but says this came around the time of the Potomac Primary, i.e. early February:

LH: One other issue that is of great importance to the people of the district here, is gun control. You said in Idaho here, recently, that “I have no intention of taking away folks’ guns.” But you support the D.C. handgun ban, and you’ve said that it’s constitutional. How do you reconcile those two positions?

BO: Because I think we have two conflicting traditions in this country. I think it’s important for us to recognize that we’ve got a tradition of handgun ownership and gun ownership generally. And a lot of people – law-abiding citizens use if for hunting, for sportsmanship, and for protecting their families. We also have a violence on the streets that is the result of illegal handgun usage. And so I think there is nothing wrong with a community saying we are going to take those illegal handguns off the streets, we are going to trace more effectively, how these guns are ending up on the streets, to unscrupulous gun dealers, who often times are selling to straw purchasers. And cracking down on the various loopholes that exist in terms of background checks for children, the mentally ill. Those are all approaches that I think the average gun owner would actually support. The problem is, that we’ve got a position, often times by the NRA that says any regulation whatsoever is the camel’s nose under the tent. And that, I think, is not where the American people are at. We can have reasonable, thoughtful gun control measure that I think respect the Second Amendment and people’s traditions.


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Comment pages: 1 2 3 4 5

We know of no other enumerated constitutional right whose core protection has been subjected to a freestanding “interest-balancing” approach

Unfortunately that is precisely what the court did when it struck down free speech protection in the interest of preserving “the appearance of fairness” in elections.

MarkTheGreat on June 26, 2008 at 1:50 PM

“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”

The second amendment in it’s entirety. It’s pretty clear languange, why the hell is this such an issue?

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 1:50 PM

I’m criticising the courts ruling for being so weak. It requires a HA commeter degree of uncomprehension to think that I’m criticizing it for going too far.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 1:52 PM

And no, I don’t think that the “Establishment Clause” applies to the states. “Congess shall make no law ….”

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 1:52 PM

We also have a violence on the streets that is the result of illegal handgun usage.

Really? Street violence is caused by illegal handgun usage? And I thought it was lack of parenting, lack of education, lack of respect, and so on. I didn’t realize having a gun in your hand caused you to be violent.

Laserjock on June 26, 2008 at 1:53 PM

The second amendment in it’s entirety. It’s pretty clear languange, why the hell is this such an issue?

C’mon. Language has nothing to do with it. The basic liberal mindset is to decide what they want to do, and then practice their origami on the law in order to get it. The written words might as well be ink blots for all they care.

If the Second Amendment said “Under no circmstances may any branch of government place any sort of restrictions on any sort of weapons”, the liberals would come up with some excuse to ignore it. Words mean whatever they want them to mean.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 1:56 PM

My bad, flenser. I jumped in the thread in the middle, much to my chagrin. I see by your earlier posts that we just disagree about what this ruling means in a practical sense.

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 1:59 PM

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

Of course.

Based on your extensive Constitutional studies, can you explain on what basis the SCOTUS would have any say in the matter?

Here, I’ll remind you of what the Constitution says.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Tell me how this applies in any way to what MN does.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:00 PM

Only time, and a flurry of litigation, will tell.

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 2:01 PM

My bad, flenser. I jumped in the thread in the middle, much to my chagrin.

No problem.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:01 PM

How can an amendment with very clear simple language be construed to mean such a varied, law making, regulatory interpretation?

What is there about “shall not be infringed” thats so hard to understand?

Speakup on June 26, 2008 at 2:01 PM

ROCK ON!

kirkill on June 26, 2008 at 2:03 PM

Chicago’s fascist anti-2nd laws will likely be the next on our chopping block actually, then NY and CA. MWAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!!!

doubleplusundead on June 26, 2008 at 10:52 AM

San Francisco too…

AprilOrit on June 26, 2008 at 2:05 PM

Obama said in February, …the position of the “NRA that says any regulation whatsoever is the camel’s nose under the tent.”

What does that mean?

bridgetown on June 26, 2008 at 12:35 PM

I had to look it up. Seems it’s an old Arabian proverb:

“The camel’s nose is a metaphor for a situation where permitting some small undesirable situation will allow gradual and inexorable worsening.”

-slippery slope
-foot in the door
-domino effect

JiangxiDad on June 26, 2008 at 2:05 PM

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 1:52 PM

for a time atfer the Revolutionary War, some states did have offical state religions, eventually the states ended that practice.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:05 PM

The second amendment in it’s entirety. It’s pretty clear languange, why the hell is this such an issue?

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 1:50 PM

It’s why so many lawyers are liberals. They can produce a 4,000 page document explaining why you don’t have any rights.

kirkill on June 26, 2008 at 2:05 PM

BTW, Rush just made a great point about the 3rd Amendment limiting government intrusion into our homes by force. It came to mind that Clinton burnt Mt. Carmel to the ground in defiance of the 3rd Amendment, armed government agents intruding into the sanctity of private homes. What happened there was absolutely out of line by Janet Reno and the Marxist progressive party aka Democrats.

maverick muse on June 26, 2008 at 2:14 PM

JiangxiDad on June 26, 2008 at 2:05 PM

But he used that instead of a different metaphore?

Kind of odd… but not unlike him and his 57 States.

upinak on June 26, 2008 at 2:14 PM

There are three basic types of firearms laws – “Shall issue”, “may issue”, and “shall not issue”.

The DC law was a “shall not issue”. Those are very rare, and now they are all in deep trouble.

Most of the big cities and some states have “may issue” laws. These allow the police to issue permits for guns at their discretion. Needless to say they rarely opt to grant it, unless you’re connected.

Todays ruling says nothing directly about these “may issue” laws, but suggests that they may be upheld.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:16 PM

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 1:52 PM

I think with a strict reading that would be the case. From what I was taught the amendment pretty much stems from the fact that England has an official Church of England. Our founders didn’t want to allow a federally established religion hence the “Congress shall make no law establishing” but left it open for the states to be allowed a state religion.

jmarcure on June 26, 2008 at 2:18 PM

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 1:56 PM

I agree that those who would like to see the Second Amendment erased (the honestly ignorant, and those who worship the government), would like to find any means to undermine the 2nd, and steal our right to defend ourselves, but i’m am not so quick to label them “liberals” and thusly undermine them. I consider myself “liberal” in the actual sense of the word. Facists, Socialists and Governmments who enslaved their peoples, are the ones who have historicley banned arms and prevented the populace from revolting against them. If there is anyone to consider a threat to your safety and liberty, it’s not the “hippy-liberal”, it’s the jack-boot of state(not to mean state like “Ohio”) authority.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:22 PM

5-4, how can the 4 be so blind?
Engrpat on June 26, 2008 at 10:23 AM

Dittos Engrpat.

Stevens, Ginsburg, Breyer, Souter are all dangerous.
It was just tooo darn close. Should have been 9-0.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D91HS2EO0&show_article=1

Texyank on June 26, 2008 at 2:25 PM

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

Of course.

Based on your extensive Constitutional studies, can you explain on what basis the SCOTUS would have any say in the matter?

Here, I’ll remind you of what the Constitution says.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Tell me how this applies in any way to what MN does.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:00 PM

-
-
Of course I don’t have benefit of all of your booklarnin’, but I believe this applies:

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby…

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 2:27 PM

If it had been Al Gore instead of Bush making those SC appointments, does anyone believe the court would have still ruled the same way?

MarkTheGreat on June 26, 2008 at 2:29 PM

The Court:

The Court’s opinion should not be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools

Nancy Pelosi today:

. “I think the court left a lot of room to run in terms of concealed weapons and guns near schools.”

Wasn’t it Obama who wanted to restrict the sale of ammunition if the gun shop was a certain distance from a school? Such a move would effectively eliminate gun stores. Sounds like Pelosi has the same idea in mind. In a big city, there are schools every few blocks. Restricting gun ownership near schools will essentially restrict gun ownership.

JiangxiDad on June 26, 2008 at 2:32 PM

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby…

So?

The Constitution does not say that states may not establish their own religion. There’s no contradiction between your quote and what I’m saying.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:35 PM

“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”

The second amendment in it’s entirety. It’s pretty clear languange, why the hell is this such an issue?

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 1:50 PM

I couldn’t agree more. The 2nd Amendment has 27 words, yet the ruling is 151 PAGES LONG. Figure it!

byteshredder on June 26, 2008 at 2:37 PM

The Constitution does not say that states may not establish their own religion. There’s no contradiction between your quote and what I’m saying.

You are right. I was wrong. (Est. clause was a poor example to begin with.) But why would the 2nd Amendment not apply to the states?

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 2:40 PM

If there is anyone to consider a threat to your safety and liberty, it’s not the “hippy-liberal”, it’s the jack-boot of state(not to mean state like “Ohio”) authority.

RMC1618

I don’t think the distinction is as large as you’d like to believe. The “hippy-liberals” are the people voting to put people like the four justice minority here onto the court.

I hear this a lot, how the liberal Democrats some individual knows are really decent people. Maybe they are. But somebody is supporting Obama and Stevens and Breyer, and it’s not “the jack-boot of the state”. It’s millions of hippy liberals who are happy to use the state to get their own way.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:41 PM

I just listened to Mayor Daley on the radio and he is really, really pissed and will pull out all the stops to prevent guns getting into the hands of people. He was quite hysterically ranting about families settling arguments with shootouts and drunks and drug addicts committing suicide. He came just short of saying that the streets will be running with blood because of the ruling.

jmarcure on June 26, 2008 at 2:41 PM

why would the 2nd Amendment not apply to the states?

If you accept “incorporation” then there is no reason. And since the entire court does accept incorporation, they have no justification for not applying the 2nd to the states.

I think that incorporation is garbage though, as is the 14th Amendment. But that’s a whole different can of worms.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:45 PM

I just listened to Mayor Daley on the radio and he is really, really pissed and will pull out all the stops to prevent guns getting into the hands of people. He was quite hysterically ranting about families settling arguments with shootouts and drunks and drug addicts committing suicide. He came just short of saying that the streets will be running with blood because of the ruling.

jmarcure on June 26, 2008 at 2:41 PM

When very few places in the US practice outright bans I think Daley’s rant speaks more to the pathetic nature of the people of Chicago more than anything else. Because really, where besides places like DC and Chicago would such rants actually persuade anyone?

NotCoach on June 26, 2008 at 2:46 PM

Enough worms for one day. Thank you for the clarification.

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 2:47 PM

I couldn’t agree more. The 2nd Amendment has 27 words, yet the ruling is 151 PAGES LONG. Figure it!

byteshredder on June 26, 2008 at 2:37 PM

the exact reason the Founding Fathers (peace be upon them) made the languange of the Constitution and Bill of Rights so plain and simple, was to avoid the exact problems that we face today with court rulings deciding what our rigths are.
But today we have judges saying “Oo dis is a word! Wat dis mean?” It’s like we have a bunch of mongoloids in black robes sitting on the Supreme court.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:51 PM

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:51 PM

lets thank those teachers who can’t teach!

upinak on June 26, 2008 at 3:02 PM

I knew I should have stayed in skool…

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 3:05 PM

It’s like we have a bunch of mongoloids in black robes sitting on the Supreme court.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:51 PM

Clearly, some members of the SCOTUS have a hidden agenda. The battle appears to be, between the federalist faction, and living constitutionalists. The original Constitution was written in simple clear English language, yet require thousands of miles of written interpretation. I firmly believe a Constitutional amendment is in order to set SCOTUS judge term limits. For example, every four years, or at the beginning of a new presidential term, three new judges in, and three out. No judge would be in that position, any longer than a two term president (8 years).

byteshredder on June 26, 2008 at 3:13 PM

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 2:41 PM

it is my understanding that “hippy-liberals” tend to be anti-establishment, and not vote anyway, if any group is responsible for the rise of Obama, I think it is those who want to see the government with even more power than it already un-Constitutionally posesses. And the people who adore that style, tend to be, as i mentioned before, Fascists, socialists, communists, people whome can be described as many things, the least of which is “liberal”.

I personally have dropped the “left-right” thinking, Tyranny and subjection are very oppurtunistic, it dosen’t care wheather it’s Nero, The Catholic Church(dark ages), Hitler, Stalin, China, Italy, Barack Obama, John McCain, Republican, Democrat. The “left-right” spectrum/horseshoe is an illusion, there is either anarchy or slavery.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 3:14 PM

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 2:51 PM
lets thank those teachers who can’t teach!

upinak on June 26, 2008 at 3:02 PM

Thank your local state-run public school!
Just remember: “Your Government loves you!”

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 3:17 PM

I personally have dropped the “left-right” thinking, Tyranny and subjection are very oppurtunistic, it dosen’t care wheather it’s Nero, The Catholic Church(dark ages), Hitler, Stalin, China, Italy, Barack Obama, John McCain, Republican, Democrat. The “left-right” spectrum/horseshoe is an illusion, there is either anarchy or slavery.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 3:14 PM

Thats why “Conservative” fits me just nicely.

1. Lower taxes
2. Freedom of speech & religion
3. Smaller gov’t but strong Nat. defense
4. Free enterprise
5. Sovereign borders
6. Strong property owner rights
7. And of course Right to Bear Arms.

If I left anything out let me know…

MechEng5by5 on June 26, 2008 at 3:28 PM

Only 5 to 4?….not good, not good….

Yikes….

Between stuff like this and the “Fairness Doctrine” it looks like we’re going to have fight like hell to maintain even the most basic constitutional rights.

Django on June 26, 2008 at 3:41 PM

So, we win one and lose one.

Mrs. Happy Housewife on June 26, 2008 at 3:42 PM

o, we win one and lose one.

Mrs. Happy Housewife on June 26, 2008 at 3:42 PM

Unfortunately when you’re talking about SCOTUS “losing one” could well mean forever.

Speakup on June 26, 2008 at 3:56 PM

I’m late to the party, but just wanted to say how glad I am that my prediction of a very narrow ruling was wrong, and those who predicted that they’d rule the 2nd Amendment an individual right called it.

The ruling still doesn’t go nearly as far as I’d like, but it’s still a big step in the right direction.

Hollowpoint on June 26, 2008 at 3:59 PM

You can see what issues terrify Obamessiah but how quickly he reverses himself – flipflops, if you will. He is terrified of the NRA and their supporters, as his idiotic pandering in Pennsylvania demonstrated, and as his idiotic statements on this decision prove.

Hammer him with it like a sledge.

Jaibones on June 26, 2008 at 4:07 PM

It’s going to be pretty hard to enforce Kennedy vs. Louisiana in light of this decision.

misterpeasea on June 26, 2008 at 4:33 PM

Jaibones on June 26, 2008 at 4:07 PM

Don’t worry. The next time there’s a shooting he’ll be positioned to switch again and rail against today’s decision.

He won’t lose anything on the left. Their memories are short.

catmman on June 26, 2008 at 4:38 PM

Bill of Rights seems to apply to Personal Rights and not rights granted to us by the Government! Excellent! It’s a very sad day, however for liberal pols! Now, come try to take my gun away from me…muhahahahahah!

sabbott on June 26, 2008 at 4:56 PM

if any group is responsible for the rise of Obama, I think it is those who want to see the government with even more power than it already un-Constitutionally posesses. And the people who adore that style, tend to be, as i mentioned before, Fascists, socialists, communists, people whome can be described as many things, the least of which is “liberal”.

RMC, there are sure an awful lot of “Fascists, socialists, communists” in American if that is the case. I don’t know that it’s very useful to make your own definitions like that. For better or worse, “liberal” in America means “what the Democratic party believes”. Just as “conservative” means “what the Republican party believes”. And neither ones is really liberal or conservative if you want to get right down to it, but we use words in their common usage to allow for communication.

flenser on June 26, 2008 at 5:12 PM

Soooo many great quotes today, but I just saw this one. Enrique, you may speak for me on this one:)

I think I speak for everyone here when I say, “Suck it, lefties.”

Patriotism!

Enrique on June 26, 2008 at 11:06 AM

bernzright777 on June 26, 2008 at 5:13 PM

AAAaaahhhhhh…as the only one in my DC neighborhood without an Obamessiah sign in his front yard I think I’ll grab my 22 and go sit on my front porch and smirk…chalk one up for the good guys! : )))))))))))))

DCJeff on June 26, 2008 at 5:40 PM

It is all well and good that this decision came down this way.
However, before you party too hard….read the decent ..OMG.

jerrytbg on June 26, 2008 at 6:01 PM

read the decentdescent ..OMG.

oops.

jerrytbg on June 26, 2008 at 6:04 PM

Is “WoooHoooo” appropriate for this kind of good news? I’m going out to dinner tonight with a right minded friend, and I’m planning on raising a toast to the 2nd Amendment.

Mooseman on June 26, 2008 at 6:15 PM

Heller protect a right to body armor??!!

From the 7th page of the decision:

Before addressing the verbs “keep” and “bear,” we interpret their object: “Arms.” The 18th-century meaning is no different from the meaning today. The 1773 edition of
Samuel Johnson’s dictionary defined “arms” as “weapons
of offence, or armour of defence.” 1 Dictionary of the English Language 107 (4th ed.) (hereinafter Johnson). Timothy Cunningham’s important 1771 legal dictionary defined “arms” as “any thing that a man wears for his defence, or takes into his hands, or useth in wrath to cast at or strike another.”

Ash on June 26, 2008 at 6:24 PM

And the people who adore that style, tend to be, as i mentioned before, Fascists, socialists, communists, people whome can be described as many things, the least of which is “liberal”.

RMC1618 on June 26, 2008 at 3:14 PM

But “liberal” is the name leftist have chose for themselves here in American politics. While “liberal” by dictionary definition means “for liberty,” clearly liberals in American politics are for slavery. They want the government to run every aspect of your life and they are not shy about telling you so. So “liberals” are actually socialist but they don’t want to be called “socialist” because many of the people they have fooled might catch on.

Clearly liberals hi-jacked the name “liberal” because they stand for policies that are the opposite of liberty. That’s just the way it is in American politics. But I say that’s fine, let them call themselves whatever they want, but judge what they are by their actions and pay no attention to what they call themselves.

Maxx on June 26, 2008 at 6:34 PM

Scalia is the man. What a cogently written opinion. He disposes with the dissent’s arguments like winnowing chaff from the wheat. I read Stevens’ and Breyer’s dissents and was embarassed that we have Supreme Court justices with that little intellectual capacity. Today, from “this side of the looking glass,” the Constitution says what it means and means what it says (not like yesterday).

second digit on June 26, 2008 at 6:43 PM

Scalia is the man. What a cogently written opinion. He disposes with the dissent’s arguments like winnowing chaff from the wheat. I read Stevens’ and Breyer’s dissents and was embarassed that we have Supreme Court justices with that little intellectual capacity. Today, from “this side of the looking glass,” the Constitution says what it means and means what it says (not like yesterday).

second digit on June 26, 2008 at 6:43 PM

Wait a second. I like Scalia, but I think you’re being a bit unfair.

It’s easy to write a cogent opinion when you don’t have to obfuscate. It’s easy to write a cogent opinion when you have logic, facts, and history on your side. It’s easy to write a cogent opinion when you aren’t trying to push your own preferences in the face of contradictory Constitutional language. It’s easy to write a cogent opinion when you aren’t trying to advance ludicrous notions like magical, invisible “emanations” and “penumbras.”

Try writing an opinion without all those advantages, and I think maybe you’ll gain a little more respect for the opinion-writing skills of Stevens and Breyer. And Ginsburg. And Kennedy.

misterpeasea on June 26, 2008 at 6:58 PM

Thats why “Conservative” fits me just nicely.

1. Lower taxes
2. Freedom of speech & religion
3. Smaller gov’t but strong Nat. defense
4. Free enterprise
5. Sovereign borders
6. Strong property owner rights
7. And of course Right to Bear Arms.

If I left anything out let me know…

MechEng5by5 on June 26, 2008 at 3:28 PM

Yeah, that pretty much covers what conservatives are in American politics and what Republicans are SUPPOSE to be. Some are and some are not. For more clarity its also helpful to list what Democrats are for:

01: High progressive taxes
02: Big government and government control of all business
03: Abolishment of property rights
04: Abolishment of all public (and eventually private) expressions of religion
05: Abolishment of free speech
06: Abolishment of gun rights
07: Abolishment of the traditional family
09: No God (government is god)
10: Appeasement of American enemies
11: Special Rights for groups they favor, rather than rights for all
12: Promotion of Globalism, destruction of National sovereignty

I could go on, but these are some of the main points. Democrats have the same goals as socialist/communist/fascist/Nazis which are all basically the same thing, just change the uniform. They are all totalitarian in nature, that is the common thread. They all abhor religion and private property rights. They all abhor freedom and free enterprise. And Democrats are exposing themselves more and more as blatant totalitarians and despisers of the Republic everyday. And they are becoming much more bold about it.

Maxx on June 26, 2008 at 6:59 PM

I’d trade Boumedienne for this decision any day.

Can’t win ‘em all.

Ken McCracken on June 26, 2008 at 7:21 PM

. . . and Antonin Scalia is the greatest American since Ronald Reagan.

I am going to hoist a couple in his honor tonight.

Ken McCracken on June 26, 2008 at 7:23 PM

damn straight

johnnyU on June 26, 2008 at 7:46 PM

Ken McCracken,

The Dems are going to find that the Boumedienne will bite them in the ass (pun intended).

It will be fun to watch the NIMBY’s come out when the feds try to find a “home” in the US for the residents of Gitmo. Alcatraz would be a very good spot for them.

Nahanni on June 26, 2008 at 7:53 PM

It’s funny how no liberals anywhere are decrying the fact that Boumedienne completely guts the Geneva Conventions, by giving unlawful combatants the same rights as lawful combatants.

Not much of an incentive to put on a uniform instead of dressing like a civilian during wartime.

What a shameful decision that was.

Ken McCracken on June 26, 2008 at 8:11 PM

It’s funny how no liberals anywhere are decrying the fact that Boumedienne completely guts the Geneva Conventions, by giving unlawful combatants the same rights as lawful combatants.

Not much of an incentive to put on a uniform instead of dressing like a civilian during wartime.

What a shameful decision that was.

Ken McCracken on June 26, 2008 at 8:11 PM

It’s not about trying to fulfill the goals of the Geneva Conventions. It’s about getting Chimpy McHitlerburton.

misterpeasea on June 26, 2008 at 8:26 PM

Not much of an incentive to put on a uniform instead of dressing like a civilian during wartime.

Hope it never get’s all Red Dawn here.

The Race Card on June 26, 2008 at 8:29 PM

i don’t know what ya’ll are jumping up and down about … this decision is a bunch of crap and no better than the miller decision.

the court believes that that your right can be regulated … which reduces it to a privilege doled out by the state.

get ready for gun registration coming to a state near you … scotus opened the door for this and a plethora of other nuances.

friggin pompous morons … can’t take a plain text reading of anything.

my recommendation is to go buy your guns and ammo now while you can. the left will have their lawsuits on all of the loop holes lined up shortly.

AZ_Redneck on June 26, 2008 at 9:52 PM

It’s amazing that this even came before the Supreme Court. But our right to bear arms and our gun culture lives to fight another day, and for that I am happy.

Hog Wild on June 26, 2008 at 10:10 PM

I haven’t read all four pages of comments, so if this has already been stated, I apologize.

While I’m quite pleased with this decision, SCOTUS declaring that “what do you know, the 2nd amendment says what it says it says” is hardly a great victory. We conservatives and constitutional constructionists have avoided catastrophe today, and not actually moved anything forward.

That said, I got googebumps from the news. That’s how low (as a practicing attorney) my expectations of SCOTUS have become.

CourtZero on June 26, 2008 at 10:19 PM

But our right to bear arms and our gun culture lives to fight another day, and for that I am happy.

What’s this gun culture stuff?

I’ve got various tools at home, each made for a particular purpose; among those tools are firearms. Is there an electric drill culture? A propane torch culture? A shovel/hoe culture?

electric-rascal on June 26, 2008 at 11:56 PM

So as I understand this, you have a right to own a handgun, a shotgun, a rifle or some other weapon you’d buy either for home defense or hunting, since that’s how a colonial-era militia operated. (Live by the originalist sword, die by the originalist sword.)

Here be the Originalist Cutlass

Relevant excerpt…
That every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch, with a box therein, to contain not less than twenty four cartridges, suited to the bore of his musket or firelock, each cartridge to contain a proper quantity of power and ball; or with a good rifle, knapsack, shot-pouch, and power-horn, twenty balls suited to the bore of his rifle, and a quarter of a power of power; and shall appear so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise or into service, except, that when called out on company days to exercise only, he may appear without a knapsack. That the commissioned Officers shall severally be armed with a sword or hanger, and espontoon; and that from and after five years from the passing of this Act, all muskets from arming the militia as is herein required, shall be of bores sufficient for balls of the eighteenth part of a pound; and every citizen so enrolled, and providing himself with the arms, ammunition and accoutrements, required as aforesaid, shall hold the same exempted from all suits, distresses, executions or sales, for debt or for the payment of taxes.

Seems to me, the Founders wanted the Militia to bear essentially the same arms and ammunition as the Regular Army.

They were smart men. They knew firearms technology would advance. I’m pretty sure they expected both the Army and the Militia to embrace those advances.

So, following that line of thinking; M4 H&K 416s for everyone!

soundingboard on June 27, 2008 at 12:27 AM

If Stevens is serious in writing this, he shows himself to be deliberately ignorant of the facts about the 2nd Amendment. Justices that choose willful ignorance about an issue should recluse themselves from the case. They certainly shouldn’t write an opinion be occupying a SCOTUS seat.

thuja on June 26, 2008 at 10:48 AM

FTFY

soundingboard on June 27, 2008 at 12:37 AM

What I find very much amusing is that the second dissent in part relies upon laws passed in 18th century America. I mean, I thought the Consitution was an evolving document, and we couldn’t be expected to live our lives according to the dictates of 18th century life. But, lo and behold, the dissention references a law pertaining to the storage of gunpowder, something not necessary for the use of fire-arms today, as proof of the government’s ability to limit the second amendment right.

Intriguing.

VolMagic on June 27, 2008 at 1:10 AM

VolMagic on June 27, 2008 at 1:10 AM

Oh come on Vol. You know better than that.

The Constitution is evolving when that is what’s required to reach the liberals’ preferred policy position. The Constitution is a fossil when that’s what’s required. The laws of other countries may be used when that’s what’s required. Only the laws of America may be used when that’s what’s required.

I’m afraid it’s a little too nuanced for you to understand, you poor simple soul.

misterpeasea on June 27, 2008 at 2:36 AM

There’s two rights guarenteed by the Second Ammendment:

One: The right of the people to arm themselves.

and

Two: The right of the people to organize themselves under arms in an apparatus independent of State or Federal control for the purpose of defending their lives, families, property, communities and rights from any force that would seek to take, destroy, or surpress them.

These two rights go hand in hand because the Founders understood that the army (which they kept small to begin with) and law enforcement simply cannot protect the citizenry against every threat to their safety and securrity 24/7/365. It’s an impossibility. This necessitated that The People be: free to arm themselves and also assemble under arms and opperate freely of the authority of State and Federal government when neccessary.

Example: Settling the Old Northwest, the people were frequently under attack from hostile indigenous peoples. What could they do? Send a rider to the nearest fort, or state capitol every time there was trouble? That would be absurd. Far more effective was for every man in the community to be armed and, at the first sign of trouble, fall in to protect the community from whatever trouble was comming. Were people supposed to jump out of bed and run to the local sheriff when someone broke into their home? Hardly. Best way to be rid of that intruder was to draw a beed and aim for the chest.

Anybody who doesn’t think this a far better system than the garbage we have today should take a good long look at footage of the LA riots, the Katrina lootings, and inquire as to their local police department’s average response time.

That’s why the the first rule of self defense is buy a gun and the second rule of self defense is buy another gun.

This is what happens when you have morons sitting on the SCOTUS who study political science and sociology and sleep through history class in college. They can study Constitutional law all they want, but without proper historical context to frame the Constitution and Bill of Rights, they are grossly unqualified for the task of interpretation of said doccuments.

SuperCool on June 27, 2008 at 6:02 AM

i don’t know what ya’ll are jumping up and down about … this decision is a bunch of crap and no better than the miller decision.

the court believes that that your right can be regulated … which reduces it to a privilege doled out by the state.

get ready for gun registration coming to a state near you … scotus opened the door for this and a plethora of other nuances.

friggin pompous morons … can’t take a plain text reading of anything.

my recommendation is to go buy your guns and ammo now while you can. the left will have their lawsuits on all of the loop holes lined up shortly.

AZ_Redneck on June 26, 2008 at 9:52 PM

Not likely. The laws that currently exist in any state are the will of the people. Lawmakers have not been sitting around waiting for an opening to regulate firearms more. They have been trying as hard as they could to do so already. The opposite is actually likely to happen as Chicago’s ban and New York’s de facto ban are now going to be challenged in court as well.

You may not like Scalia’s deference to many of the already existing laws, but he does put an end to outright bans and laws that don’t allow you to have working firearm in your home either. This is a step in the right direction and we will not see any increase in new gun legislation but just the opposite because legislators, as I said, have already been operating as if there is no 2nd Amendment.

NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 8:25 AM

I am pleased that five of the members of the supreme court are able to read and comprehend at the sixth grade level.

Think_b4_speaking on June 27, 2008 at 8:27 AM

NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 8:25 AM

This opinion is far from perfect, but I agree that the most profound aspect of it is the recognition that the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right.

Sadly, this is quickly fucked up by idiotic quibbling over exactly what kinds of arms are covered….

All technology known as ‘arms’ should rightly be openly available to all people.

LimeyGeek on June 27, 2008 at 11:02 AM

Go Patriots!!!

By that I mean “us”… :) :) :)

I want to go out and buy a hat like the militaman on Drudge’s front page was wearing!

MechEng5by5 on June 27, 2008 at 11:09 AM

So, for instance, if the Minnesota legislature passed a law making Hinduism the Official State Religion, the Supreme Court would be in error in striking down that law based on the Constitution?

hillbillyjim on June 26, 2008 at 1:52 PM

Of course, according to the founders at least. Repeal the 14th Amendment and there’d be no question. There were, as you may know, seven states with state churches that ratified the Constitution.

So, do you think that school board is a synonym for congress?

Akzed on June 27, 2008 at 11:11 AM

The decision goes further than even the Bush administration wanted, but probably leaves most firearms laws intact.

I for one dont see much of anything changing. Heller still wont be able to get a gun in DC, if he doesnt already have one, he wont be able to buy it in Virginia or Maryland or anywhere outside DC and transport it in, and the guns he already have are under restriction. So what exactly changed?
The socialist gun grabbing democrats will still find ways to restrict the God-given rights of free born Americans. They will tax guns or ammunition as per Daniel Moynihan, require a license that will cause you to refinance your house to pay for, or some other “reasonable” measures.
Aside from the court-granted and democrat protected right to destroy the innocent in the womb, our God-given rights will still be restricted. What are “unusual weapons” anyway?
It’s an absolute shame on this country that four Supreme Court justices did not and could not recognize a God-given right and to affirm it. This is what we can expect from Obama judges.

abcurtis on June 27, 2008 at 11:30 AM

The laws that currently exist in any state are the will of the people.

When has that ever been a consideration for any court? Majority of the people in Cali didnt want gay marriage but the court forced them to have it anyway.

abcurtis on June 27, 2008 at 11:33 AM

There’s two rights guarenteed by the Second Ammendment:

One: The right of the people to arm themselves.

and

Two: The right of the people to organize themselves under arms in an apparatus independent of State or Federal control for the purpose of defending their lives, families, property, communities and rights from any force that would seek to take, destroy, or surpress them.

These two rights go hand in hand because the Founders understood that the army (which they kept small to begin with) and law enforcement simply cannot protect the citizenry against every threat to their safety and securrity 24/7/365. It’s an impossibility. This necessitated that The People be: free to arm themselves and also assemble under arms and opperate freely of the authority of State and Federal government when neccessary.

SuperCool on June 27, 2008 at 6:02 AM

Good stuff and I agree totally. Is there a court case out there somewhere, where these ideas are expressed. Maybe something in the Congressional record that you know of? I know there are many quotes by the founders that relay this message.

It’s good and logical of itself (self evident) and the sheer common sense aspect of it requires no additional support. But if there is a reference for it I’d like to have it.

Maxx on June 27, 2008 at 12:17 PM

I’m afraid it’s a little too nuanced for you to understand, you poor simple soul.

misterpeasea on June 27, 2008 at 2:36 AM

Too true. They don’t teach us quantum logic in good old Tennessee. We’re too busy makin’ and drinkin’ moonshine and chasing after our sisters. Thanks for edumicating me, though.

Man am I glad we got 9 dictators to tell us how to live. How ever would we manage without their sublime control?

VolMagic on June 27, 2008 at 2:36 PM

DC has said they will not register semi-automatic handguns. DC has a machine gun ban, which says that a semi-auto that can take a magazine of 12 rounds or more is a machine gun.

mad saint jack on June 27, 2008 at 2:57 PM

What’s amazing about this decision is that it wasn’t 9-0, it was 5-4. Who are these 4 morons?

Mojave Mark on June 27, 2008 at 4:34 PM

We’re too busy makin’ and drinkin’ moonshine and chasing after our sisters.

VolMagic on June 27, 2008 at 2:36 PM

Heh.

Once two strangers climbed ol’ Rocky Top, lookin’ for a moonshine still,
Strangers ain’t come down from Rocky Top, reckon they never will.

Corn won’t grow at all on Rocky Top, Dirt’s too rocky by far,
That’s why all the folks on Rocky Top, get their corn from a jar.

misterpeasea on June 27, 2008 at 5:30 PM

When has that ever been a consideration for any court? Majority of the people in Cali didnt want gay marriage but the court forced them to have it anyway.

abcurtis on June 27, 2008 at 11:33 AM

What does that have to do with gun laws? Name a single state that has had a gun law struck down by any court in your lifetime. The GUN LAWS that exist today in any state are the will of the people.

NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 7:21 PM

yeah this little thing called the Constitution keeps popping up and saving us citizens. Who are the a-holes that keep passing these unconstitutional little snippets that make the Supreme Court have to jump in and reverse? Wars have been fought on our own soil to keep us free and let’s keep it free.

johnnyU on June 27, 2008 at 7:37 PM

The laws that currently exist in any state are the will of the people.

kind of nice … in a story book sort of way. i don’t mean to be a smart alec or disrespectful, but while that has been the ideal, it’s never been true. there is always some prick that wants to tell you how to live.

The opposite is actually likely to happen as Chicago’s ban and New York’s de facto ban are now going to be challenged in court as well.

i disagree. the respective ‘ban’ might go down, but wait for the registration and quibble over what arms are … and the new ones … ‘sensitive areas’ and ‘unusual weapons’. watch those lists grow …

i see someone posted that DC is quibbling over possession semi-automatics already.

You may not like Scalia’s deference to many of the already existing laws, but he does put an end to outright bans and laws that don’t allow you to have working firearm in your home either.

couple of years, you won’t be able to legally take one out of your home

“If you have 10,000 regulations, you destroy all respect for the law.”
— Winston Churchill

i am no fan of Winston … but my respect began waning a while back. i will always live like their is a 2nd Amendment

AZ_Redneck on June 27, 2008 at 7:45 PM

AZ_Redneck on June 27, 2008 at 7:45 PM

I am sorry, but you are reading too much into it. States have been making laws for decades without guidance from the courts and these laws are based on what people want since they elected the people who made them. Here in Michigan I can get a CCW as long as I am not a felon or mentally retarded. That will not change any time soon. And we got our CCW law a few years back because the people of Michigan demanded it.

Scalia stated quite clearly that this ruling only strikes down outright bans and does nothing else. He did not call for more laws or say what laws should be passed. He said that what most states do now is constitutional. Now people can argue about whether he’s right about that or not. But there simply will not be a flurry of new gun laws across the country.

NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 7:54 PM

Wilmette, IL Suspends Handgun Ban

http://www.snowflakesinhell.com

mad saint jack on June 27, 2008 at 7:57 PM

NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 7:21 PM
NotCoach on June 27, 2008 at 7:54 PM

And to think I was going to apologize for goating you awhile back.
Not gonna happen now.
This is an absolutely asinine statement.

Name a single state that has had a gun law struck down by any court in your lifetime.

AB was referring Calif judges.
Calif judges, (most), Are NOT going to shoot down any gun laws…….but ANTI-GAY laws and referenda they will.
The will of the people!!!!!!!! Yea right..

How often do the legislature’s of any given state do what the people want them to do?
Az’s right, you’re living in a dream world.

jerrytbg on June 27, 2008 at 10:18 PM

labrat on June 27, 2008 at 10:25 PM

I wonder if Stevens & Breyer ever read these quotes!

jerrytbg on June 27, 2008 at 10:31 PM

I wonder if Stevens & Breyer ever read these quotes!

jerrytbg on June 27, 2008 at 10:31 PM

No kidding, sometimes I wonder if they are even reading the same constitution that I am.

labrat on June 27, 2008 at 11:02 PM

Good stuff and I agree totally. Is there a court case out there somewhere, where these ideas are expressed. Maybe something in the Congressional record that you know of? I know there are many quotes by the founders that relay this message.

It’s good and logical of itself (self evident) and the sheer common sense aspect of it requires no additional support. But if there is a reference for it I’d like to have it.

Maxx on June 27, 2008 at 12:17 PM

A short summation of the sentiments of the founders themselves from The Federalist Papers some of which were pointed out by labrat, who cited the most compelling ones, in this History BA’s assesment.

SuperCool on June 28, 2008 at 2:25 AM

How often do the legislature’s of any given state do what the people want them to do?
Az’s right, you’re living in a dream world.

jerrytbg on June 27, 2008 at 10:18 PM

This is not hard to understand. First, no court has ever struck down any states gun laws that I am aware of. That means for guns the legislative process has been the only law of the land. And since the legislative process has not banned weapons in most places what exactly makes you think they will all of the sudden start doing so? We still elect our legislators, right? Places that have strictor gun laws have exactly what the people deserve by electing who they elect.

Second, nothing in the Heller ruling grants states anymore power than they have already been exercising. In fact, it denies some areas a tool they have been using, which is an outright ban. Why this is so hard for you or any other paranoid twit around here to understand is beyond me.

Now, if the courts start doing something totally unprecedented and start reinstating laws from the bench (not just overturning them) or make negative rulings that take away rights granted through the legislative process, than we can talk.

NotCoach on June 28, 2008 at 8:14 AM

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