Seven Washington Citizens File Challenge To DC Anti-Guns Laws


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gun-fucious
April 16, 2003, 01:26 AM
Seven Washington Citizens File Challenge To DC Anti-Guns Laws

by
Larry Pratt

Shelly Parker is one of seven plaintiffs who has gone to U.S.
District Court in our Nation's capital to challenge Washington DC's
anti-gun laws which blatantly infringe the Constitutionally
protected right of private citizens to keep and bear arms. In a
sworn statement to the Court explaining why she wants to possess a
functional handgun in her home for self-defense, Parker says, in
part:

I reside in a high-crime neighborhood of the District of
Columbia.... When I moved into the neighborhood, I soon noticed
my block was constantly beset by drug dealing and drug use. I
started calling the police frequently and encouraging my neighbors
to call the police as well. I organized block meetings to discuss
the neighborhood's response to the drug activity at a church on my
street....

The drug dealers... identified me as an anti-drug activist and
began threatening me whenever they would see me walking around the
neighborhood. They also started threatening my neighbors very
loudly.

On June 12, 2002, the back window of my car was broken. The
following month, a large rock came through my front window. I've
also had a security camera stolen from the outside of my house.
On one occasion, a drug user who sometimes acts as a lookout for
the drug dealers drove his car into the back fence of my house.

On the night of February 12, 2003, the date on which the
Washington Times carried a front-page article about this lawsuit
and my role in it, a drug dealer I knew as "Nanook" started
banging on my door and tried to pry his way into my house,
repeatedly yelling, "bitch, I'll kill you, I live on this block,
too."

But, of course, under Washington DC's anti-gun laws, among the
strictest in the Nation, Shelly Parker cannot now legally have a
handgun, even in her home, for self-defense. Among other things,
these anti-gun laws punish a first offense by a fine of up to $1,000
and imprisonment of up to one year (or both), and a second offense
by a fine of up to $5,000 or a jail term of up to five years, or
both. Even the movement of a handgun from one location to another on
one's property carries a criminal penalty.

To demonstrate just how absurd, outrageous and irrational Washington
DC's anti-self defense laws are, consider the case of one of
Parker's fellow plaintiffs, Dick Anthony Heller. Heller is a Special
Police Officer who works in the District of Columbia providing
security for the Federal judiciary. He is already licensed to and
does carry a handgun on his job. But when Heller, who also lives in
a high-crime neighborhood in Washington DC, applied for permission
to have a handgun in his home this was denied!

In any event, to no one's surprise, lawyers for the District of
Columbia and Mayor Anthony Williams -- in an embarrassingly
incompetent brief -- have asked the District Court to dismiss the
arguments of Shelly Parker and her fellow plaintiffs.

In opposition to the District of Columbia's pathetic Motion To
Dismiss, the attorneys for Parker, et al -- Alan Gura, Robert A.
Levy, Gene Healy and Clark M. Neily -- have filed what is arguably
the finest, most concise and compellingly documented defense of the
"individual right" view of the Second Amendment I have ever seen.
Among other things, this excellent brief shows clearly:

* That the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Miller did
not adopt a "collective rights" view of the Second Amendment. To
the contrary, Miller supports interpreting this Amendment as any
other individual right.

* That the District of Columbia's Circuit Court has read Miller as
implicitly adopting the individual rights model of the Second
Amendment.

* That none of the cases cited by those defending the DC anti-gun
laws, and asserting the collective rights view, contain any
meaningful analysis of the Second Amendment.

* That the Supreme Court has repeatedly suggested that the Second
Amendment secures an individual right.

* That the framers of our Constitution intended that the Second
Amendment guarantee an individual right to keep and bear arms.

* That the text of the Second Amendment plainly establishes that
individuals have a right to keep and bear arms independent of
state service.

* That to the extent the Preamble of the Second Amendment serves
as an operative guide, it does not limit the rights of the people
since the word "militia" is practically synonymous with "people."

* That the people protected by the Second Amendment are the same
people protected throughout the Bill of Rights.

* That the "right to keep and bear arms" is the right to privately
possess and carry ordinary firearms.

I repeat: This brief is without a doubt one of the best I have ever
read on this subject. You can read it and other documents pertaining
to this case at http://www.alangura.com/parker on the web. I urge
you to read it closely, print it out and keep it as a reference
document. It is excellent and the attorneys who put it together are
to be congratulated.

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Standing Wolf
April 16, 2003, 07:22 PM
under Washington DC's anti-gun laws, among the
strictest in the Nation, Shelly Parker cannot now legally have a
handgun, even in her home, for self-defense.

Is Washington, D.C. in the United States?

Blackhawk
April 16, 2003, 07:34 PM
Good for them! :D

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