D.C. gun case may hit Chicago (Tribune Article)


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Neo-Luddite
September 5, 2007, 09:19 AM
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-guns_wed1sep05,0,3684121.story

D.C. gun case may hit Chicago
City's law is next target if foes win in Supreme Court

By James Oliphant | Washington Bureau
September 5, 2007


WASHINGTON - Those who would do away with Washington's near-total ban on handguns will tell you point-blank their next target: Chicago.

Gun-rights advocates scored a stunning success earlier this year when a three-judge panel of a federal appeals court in Washington swept aside the District of Columbia's ban on owning handguns, which had been in place since 1976.

On Tuesday, the district government appealed the decision to the Supreme Court. If the court takes the case, as many observers believe it will, it could place Chicago's handgun ban, as well as similar laws nationwide, in jeopardy.



"There is reason to be concerned at this point," said Thomas Mannard, executive director of the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence.

"Chicago would be the logical follow-up," said Robert Levy, a libertarian activist who filed the case against the D.C. ban. Levy, too, wants the Supreme Court to take the case, making this a rare instance when both sides in a dispute hope an appeal goes forward.

In a 2-1 decision in March, a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals here said the district's ban violated the Constitution's 2nd Amendment. It was the most affirmative and sweeping embrace of the right to bear arms yet by a federal appellate court.

'We do not need more guns'

That left the D.C. government in a bind. It faced a choice of asking the Supreme Court to take the case and risk triggering a monumental ruling from its conservative majority -- one that could wipe out gun bans across the nation -- or accepting the appeals court decision and reworking its ordinance. It decided to go for broke.

At a news conference Tuesday on the steps of the district's police headquarters, Mayor Adrian Fenty said the city had no choice.

"In the end, the bottom line is that we do not need more guns in this city," said Fenty, flanked by more than a dozen police officers. "The only possible outcome with more handguns is more violence."

As an example of the urgency of the situation, district officials cited the death Sunday of a teenager who was shot by a 15-year-old in a struggle over a handgun. Five people were killed in the district in close to a 24-hour period over the weekend. In Chicago, the homicide rate is down this year by almost 8 percent compared to a year ago, according to the Chicago Police Department, which credits, among others things, an active effort to keep handguns off the streets.

"The handgun ban in Chicago has made the city safer," said Tom Vanden Berk, executive director of UCAN, a Chicago social welfare agency. Vanden Berk's son was killed in crossfire in 1992.

Bans ineffective, critics say

But critics say that while law-abiding residents cannot keep handguns for self-defense, the ban does nothing to prevent the flow of illegal guns into Chicago from surrounding areas where buying a gun is easier. As an example, they cite the city resorting to such tactics as the recent gun buyback, which netted almost 6,000 handguns and assault weapons in exchange for amnesty and $100 debit cards.



The first sweeping gun ban in the nation was passed by Morton Grove, Ill., in 1981. After it was upheld by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court declined to hear the case. That gave such cities as Chicago reason to believe that their gun bans were bulletproof. But a Supreme Court ruling now would trump the 7th Circuit decision.

If the high court were to endorse a broad view of the 2nd Amendment in the D.C. case, it would be a short step for Levy and other gun-rights activists to argue that the amendment also applies to such municipal ordinances as the Chicago ban.

The district's decision to appeal has left gun-control advocates angst-ridden. They worry that the district's case isn't the best positioned for Supreme Court review and fear a precedent that could have a cascade effect across the nation.

"There are obvious risks to taking this particular case before this particular court," said Dennis Henigan, legal director of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.

The Supreme Court has not directly ruled on the scope of the 2nd Amendment since 1939, and regardless, Henigan said, the current court is "comfortable disregarding very old precedents." Added Kristen Rand, legislative director of the Violence Policy Center in Washington: "I think you can rest assured that virtually every gun law in the country would be at risk."

D.C.'s attorney general, Linda Singer, said the district could not worry about the effect a negative ruling would have on other cities. "Our responsibility is to the District of Columbia," Singer said.

- - -

Chicago gun ban similar to Washington's

The Chicago handgun ban is considered a close cousin of the District of Columbia law, which prohibits the possession of handguns in the home but permits ownership of rifles and shotguns. The Chicago ordinance, enacted in 1983, bars the ownership of handguns and assault weapons and mandates that guns owned before the ban must be reregistered every two years.

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Neo-Luddite
September 5, 2007, 09:22 AM
I added the bolding to highlight the fact that the only sources allowed to weigh in on the issue in the article are pattently anti-gun rights 100%.
Not very balanced reporting for the Tribune--anyone care to send a few nice emails?

Officers'Wife
September 5, 2007, 09:39 AM
Hi Neo,

Nothing personal but expecting the Trib or the Daley News to be balanced is much akin to asking the Easter Bunny to deliver Christmas presents.

Chicago is a hellhole with a violent culture. No law, no ban of any sort is going to change that. Only when the culture changes will the violence abate. As long as the Trib and the Sun Times make excuses the culture will never change. Just the opinion of someone that lived in an area a long way from heaven and too close to Chicago.

Selena

frogomatic
September 5, 2007, 09:49 AM
I grew up in southern IL, and frankly I was sick of chicago politics taking away my gun rights from 200 miles away 10 F'n years ago(I've since moved to a state that's not retarded). I hope DC gets a legal beating, and that chicago is next on the list, for the sake of all my gun toting buddies back home.

Neo-Luddite
September 5, 2007, 09:49 AM
I know--'Balanced Reporting' is asking a lot--especially in Chicago.

El Tejon
September 5, 2007, 09:55 AM
The antis are finally realizing what an atomic bomb Parker represents.:D

If the Supreme Court upholds an individual right to arms, they are in the same position as Americans for Book Control.:cool: And a new wave of pro-gun litigation will sweep throughout every federal appellate circuit.

scout26
September 5, 2007, 10:03 AM
"I think you can rest assured that virtually every gun law in the country would be at risk."


Hehehehehe......Looks like they finally cracked the code.......

[Dances around like a giddy schoolgirl]

MatthewVanitas
September 5, 2007, 10:43 AM
Which organizations are spearheading the challenge to D.C.?

Is now the time to be making extra donations to one org or another that's really a player in this case?

Dave Workman
September 5, 2007, 10:44 AM
Okay, I am puzzled. Just what isn't balanced about this report?

The Tribune's James Oliphant accurately describes the dilemma now faced by gun control proponents: A Supreme Court ruling upholding the District Court of Appeals decision written by Judge Laurence Silberman could be devastating to restrictive gun laws across the country. I've seen a lot of people say the same thing right here on this forum.

And you guys are complaining that the Chicago Tribune reports this? It is essentially the same thing I wrote in a Gun Digest, The Magazine analysis a few months ago, and nobody here squawked about that.

I submit that the Chicago Tribune has nailed this story, and this issue, precisely. Gun control proponents are very fearful of a SCOTUS ruling favorable to the individual rights interpretation, and supporting the notion that gun bans violate the Second Amendment, which protects the right of an individual citizen to keep and bear arms. There is nothing inaccurate or biased about that at all. It's true.

The Tribune accurately notes that Chicago's gun ban could be the next target, because supporters of the Parker case have indicated that very thing to me. This story even quotes Bob Levy, and his remark comes as no surprise.

Now, in keeping with the new spirit around here, if you have a beef with this story in the Tribune, send a letter to the editor.

Dave Workman
September 5, 2007, 10:47 AM
MatthewVanitas:
Mr. Levy is taking no financial assistance from any pro-gun organizations to fight this case, so far as I know. You will very likely see those organizations, or at least some of them, file supporting briefs.

Neo-Luddite
September 5, 2007, 11:29 AM
Yes, Dave--letters to the editor!

Notice that the 'balance' of pro gun opinion is summarized as 'critics say'--and the opposing view is carried aloft with directly attributed statements from no less than four individuals and organizations. I would have expected at least some statement thrown in (supporting Mr. Levy) from the ISRA or NRA spokesperson or that of a similar group.

And that is my beef.

ServiceSoon
September 5, 2007, 12:58 PM
Dances around like a giddy schoolgirl
Mind if I join you?

Which organizations are spearheading the challenge to D.C.?

THis case brought to you by...Alan Gura, Gura & Possessky, PLLC; and Robert A. Levy, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute. I do believe that they are not accepting dontations for this case. I'm sure www.cato.org would accept a donation in their name.

BTW As filed to the SCOTUS the case name is District of Columbia, Mayor Fenty v. Dick Heller.

ozwyn
September 5, 2007, 02:41 PM
given what IMO is an amazingly weak appeal, the anti-gun crowd SHOULD be worried.

Robert Hairless
September 5, 2007, 02:54 PM
Ozwyn, in another thread Henry Bowman pointed out to me that all we've seen is the District's petition for the Supreme Court to hear its appeal. He's a knowledgable attorney.

fletcher
September 5, 2007, 03:08 PM
"Chicago would be the logical follow-up,"
Sounds good to me.

which netted almost 6,000 handguns and assault weapons in exchange for amnesty and $100 debit cards.
Why don't local gun groups have "buybacks" from people who otherwise wouldn't use the gun? It sounds like a good way to score some good firearms in need of a loving home.

W.E.G.
September 5, 2007, 03:11 PM
The case should not be referred to anymore as the "Parker" case.

The correct party is HELLER.
(...and I kinda like that - as in give 'em HELL)

http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/heller.jpg

PARTIES TO THE PROCEEDING
Petitioners District of Columbia and Mayor Adrian M.
Fenty were defendants-appellees below. Mayor Fenty was
substituted automatically for the previous Mayor, Anthony
A. Williams, under Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure
43(b)(2).
Respondent Dick Anthony Heller was the only plaintiffappellant
below held by the court of appeals to have standing.
The other plaintiffs-appellants were Shelly Parker, Tom
G. Palmer, Gillian St. Lawrence, Tracey Ambeau, and
George Lyon.

El Tejon
September 5, 2007, 03:19 PM
Oh, fine, go all lawyer on me.:neener:

I called it Parker because that's what the appellate case was and that is the nuclear weapon that is poised to wipe out gun control. Parker/Heller=a weapon of mass restoration (of civil rights).:D

Standing Wolf
September 5, 2007, 03:48 PM
"In the end, the bottom line is that we do not need more guns in this city," said Fenty, flanked by more than a dozen police officers. "The only possible outcome with more handguns is more violence."

Yeah, but the cops don't play politics in uniform.

MrPeter
September 5, 2007, 04:24 PM
On Tuesday, the district government appealed the decision to the Supreme Court. If the court takes the case, as many observers believe it will, it could place Chicago's handgun ban, as well as similar laws nationwide, in jeopardy.

"There is reason to be concerned at this point," said Thomas Mannard, executive director of the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence.
Cheers to the good folks and wherever they came from that are doing our nation a great service. Anyone know how we can help them? Is the NRA having any kind of hand in this?

It almost doesn't matter. It's like a dream come true!

W.E.G.
September 5, 2007, 04:26 PM
You can call it the "Fenty" case, or the "Idiots in DC" case for all I care.

But understand this - whatever the outcome of the case in the SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES, the correct reference to the case will be "Heller." I don't make up these rules. I just report them.

Noxx
September 5, 2007, 04:28 PM
I know I've said it before, but I can't help saying it again.

I cannot wait for SCOTUS to hear this, the impact of a decision in our favor is mind-blowing, real dancing in the streets type stuff.

Gonna be a bright, bright, sunshiny day :D

Mainsail
September 5, 2007, 04:36 PM
As an example of the urgency of the situation, district officials cited the death Sunday of a teenager who was shot by a 15-year-old in a struggle over a handgun.
They sure glossed over this little tidbit. Two teenagers struggling over a handgun in a place where it’s 100% illegal to own or possess a handgun. That, on its face, says the ban they are trying so hard to maintain is hopelessly flawed and unworkable.

Dave Workman
September 5, 2007, 05:33 PM
Neo-Luddite wrote:
Notice that the 'balance' of pro gun opinion is summarized as 'critics say'--and the opposing view is carried aloft with directly attributed statements from no less than four individuals and organizations. I would have expected at least some statement thrown in (supporting Mr. Levy) from the ISRA or NRA spokesperson or that of a similar group.

And that is my beef.

Well, NL, it's not a good beef. This story is about the fears (justifiable IMO) among the anti-gunners about the potential of a favorable ruling by SCOTUS. It's a story about their concerns, not about some pro-gun chest-thumping. That'll come later. Once that is in perspective, there's nothing wrong with this story at all, and if there were a problem, I'd say so. As I said earlier, this is pretty much the same thing I wrote back in the spring.

It is quite possible that he could not reach anyone at ISRA or NRA...or some other organization, or they did not return his calls. The Second Amendment Foundation earlier today issued a blistering statement about Fenty's remarks that is available at www.saf.org and will likely be on KeepAndBearArms.com tomorrow morning.

ServiceSoon
September 5, 2007, 05:52 PM
Why don't local gun groups have "buybacks" from people who otherwise wouldn't use the gun? It sounds like a good way to score some good firearms in need of a loving home.

That is an exellent question and was the point of this (http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=299967) thread. If only there was a pro-gun lawyer that frequented this forum and could make a comment. :evil:

Is the NRA having any kind of hand in this?

Some information on this can be found here (http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=8169).

hotsauce
September 5, 2007, 06:07 PM
Chicago is an awesome place to live or visit if you can put up with cold weather which I love. If this happenes I will not return and that makes me sad. The crime rates will go through the roof over night and getting mugged at gun point sucks. D.C. just flat out sucks anyway IMO so I really do not care about ever going there again. BTW, I live in S.C. and it does'nt get quieter than this. Except for the time I hit my range which is my back porch and let off a few rounds.

CountGlockula
September 5, 2007, 06:11 PM
Man, Chicago makes California look like Disneyland.

Old Fuff
September 5, 2007, 06:19 PM
Before anyone starts dancing in the streets, keep in find that if the Court desides to NOT hear the case, Washington D.C.'s law will be history, but all of the others, Chicago in particular, will still be intact. We have come a long way, but we haven't won the gold ring yet. :uhoh:

hotsauce
September 5, 2007, 06:22 PM
Yeah, but it has it parts that I love. People suck period and that why I live in the "boonies" now. I've been almost everywhere in the U.S. and for some reason I love Chicago. Denver is a very close 2nd though.

elrod
September 5, 2007, 06:39 PM
hotsauce

Quote:
"Chicago is an awesome place to live or visit if you can put up with cold weather which I love. If this happenes I will not return and that makes me sad. The crime rates will go through the roof over night and getting mugged at gun point sucks. D.C. just flat out sucks anyway IMO so I really do not care about ever going there again."

Are you saying that you are in favor of the status quo........:confused::confused:

Soybomb
September 5, 2007, 06:39 PM
If this happenes I will not return and that makes me sad. The crime rates will go through the roof over night and getting mugged at gun point sucks.
I'm a little confused, you're saying you think if the handgun ban in chicago were overturned that crime rates would up? I believe the criminals in chicago are already demonstrating that they have no trouble getting guns.

lee n. field
September 5, 2007, 06:42 PM
WASHINGTON - Those who would do away with Washington's near-total ban on handguns will tell you point-blank their next target: Chicago.


**** straight!

as Americans for Book Control.

CLICK! (light bulb on.) A4BC would make a wonderful parody group.

Neo-Luddite
September 5, 2007, 08:05 PM
Well, NL, it's not a good beef.

Yeh, Dave--but it's mine. And it's worth at least what it cost you, right?

Regards,

Mike

Redneck with a 40
September 5, 2007, 08:13 PM
Personally, I hope the SCOTUS hear's this case and it goes our way. I will be dancing with joy in the driveway if this comes to fruition. I would love nothing more than the see Wash DC's rediculous handgun ban thrown out and then to have Chicago's ban thrown out as well, seeing Mayor Daly's reaction to this would be priceless.:D As an added benefit, the Brady Campaign would no longer have a mission, I'll bring the padlock for the door's.:D:D I would like nothing more.

v35
September 5, 2007, 08:52 PM
Overturning the DC gun ban, if that were to even happen, does not mean that you will be able to stroll into a gun shop, buy one, and carry it like in most places in the civilized world.

There is no outright handgun gun ban in New Jersey, for instance, but the procedures for legally purchasing one are over-the-top ridiculous, not to mention time-consuming and costly. Carry permits are limited to the elite, wealthy, and well-connected. One's 2A rights are thus effectively denied in places like Newark and the peaceful utopias like it.

I am not an attorney but from my experience the outcome of this court ruling will be anything but clear-cut and simple.

I don't want to be a wet blanket but it seems to me the best one can hope from Heller is a simple removal of the all-encompassing ban that now exists, making DC more like NJ and NYC. The road from there to fully realizing 2A rights in places like Chicago is a long and bumpy one.

This fight may never end, but fight we must.

Gator
September 5, 2007, 08:59 PM
+1 for V35.

Also, even if the SCOTUS hears Heller, there is no guarantee they will decide in our favor. Some very strange decisions have come out of the Supreme Court, "conservative" panel or no. Gun-rights advocates should be just as worried as the gun-banners.

Chicago is an awesome place to live or visit if you can put up with cold weather which I love. If this happenes I will not return and that makes me sad. The crime rates will go through the roof over night and getting mugged at gun point sucks.

Chicago is a broke, corrupt, principality lorded over by one of the biggest crooks in American political history. My current job has me in Crook county, but the only time I will go into the city is for jury duty. I wish we could build a wall around Chicago and seal it off from the rest of the State. And more guns in the right hands will cause crime rates to go down not up; as has been proven all over the country.

Durruti
September 5, 2007, 10:04 PM
As an added benefit, the Brady Campaign would no longer have a mission, I'll bring the padlock for the door's. I would like nothing more.

Me neither, but it won't happen. If the court rules that the government can pass any gun ban it wants, would pro-gun groups close up? Did anti-abortion groups shut down after Roe v. Wade?

Overwhelming victories for us will invigorate the antis and bring more supporters and donations to them.

I'm hoping for a big judicial success, too, but we can't harbor any fantasies that the struggle ends there.

fast eddie
September 5, 2007, 11:21 PM
The article does a good job of describing the gun banner's fears even if it lets them get thier sound-bites in.
It's disturbing to me that we've come to a point where we are relying on nine egg heads in an ivory tower to determine if we will be allowed to own firearms. I for one am nervous.

streicherr
September 5, 2007, 11:41 PM
V35 is exactly right. There's a big difference between an outright ban and an endless set of regulatory hoops to jump through. SCOTUS is unlikely to go way beyond the narrow scope of the case at hand.

How many court cases and years came between blacks winning the right to vote, and actually being able to vote? Poll taxes, literacy tests, etc.

Expect to see a flurry of "regulations" to create a defacto ban once the explicit ban is overturned once and for all. Cases to overturn those regulations will also take years to wind their way through the courts. That light you see at the end of the tunnel is simply a new train bearing down on the citizens of DC and Chicago, unfortunately.

Randy

CNYCacher
September 5, 2007, 11:46 PM
Dave Workman: I agree. Good article.

Tom Servo
September 6, 2007, 12:46 AM
[Dances around like a giddy schoolgirl]
I think I'll join you. I promise not to let my hands get all roamy this time :p

There's a copy of Fenty's appeal here. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/metro/DC_Final_Petition.pdf)

This thing wouldn't stand up to a high-school debate team, so it's likely the SCOTUS will tear it apart. It tries to claim that, according to Emerson, handguns aren't covered by the 2A. If that argument fails, they try to claim under Presser v. Illinois that DC isn't bound by the Bill of Rights. Failing at THAT, it claims that DC should be allowed to ban handguns because they're "uniquely dangerous."

Then it quotes Kellerman. It limps to a conclusion by prophesising doom, claiming that handguns cause suicide, domestic abuse, and fatal childhood accidents.

The whole appeal is a house of cards propped up with wet toothpicks.

I can't imagine the SCOTUS not hearing it at this point, given that neither side of the debate will let it die quietly. Really, Fenty should have kept his mouth shut.

The crowning irony is that, if this goes the way I expect it to, we can all look forward to thanking Mayor Fenty, of all people, for the relaxation of many gun restrictions in this country.

Gator
September 6, 2007, 08:03 AM
He quotes Kellerman, but says Lott has been debunked? Typical :mad:

Deanimator
September 6, 2007, 09:05 AM
Yeah, but it has it parts that I love. People suck period and that why I live in the "boonies" now. I've been almost everywhere in the U.S. and for some reason I love Chicago.
I'm from Chicago and I simply loathe the place.

It is absolutely THE most bigoted city in the United States, bar none. And it's not just stereotypical White racism. Whites hate Blacks. Blacks hate Jews. Mexicans hate Puerto Ricans. Mainland Italians hate Sicilians. If there are [non-Mexican] aliens in Chicago, the Vulcans probably hate the Romulans.

The Chicago PD is a cesspool of corruption, brutality, racism, and outright criminality. The Federal prosecutor who prosecuted Scooter Libby is currently investigating a home invasion/burglary/kidnapping ring operating inside of the "elite" SOS unit. Last month's testimony in a mob trial included police collusion with organized crime. A cop shot an unarmed man in the head under a transit agency video camera and got a 30 day suspension... and a promotion. A 250lb., drunken, off-duty cop who stomped a 115lb. barmaid has been shown preferential treatment by police on multiple occasions. The City of Chicago is paying all of the legal bills of a retired police supervisor accused in civil court of running an organized torture cell within the police department. The City ADMITS that the torture happened. Coincidentally, Mayor Daley was the State's Attorney when most of the torture activity was going on.

***15*** people were murdered in Chicago between last Friday and this past Monday. That gun ban sure seems to be working out for them, huh? Look and see how many were murdered in Cleveland, Columbus or Cincinnati during that time, even though our streets are "flooded" with "hidden, loaded handguns". Maybe it's not the guns...

If Al Capone, Klaus Barbi and Uday Hussein got together and created their ideal city, it'd be Chicago.

Neo-Luddite
September 6, 2007, 09:41 AM
Deanimator--you hit it on the money and made me spill my coffee--but don't you miss the pizza?

I honestly don't think that the SCOTUS is going to hear the case. They will let the ruling stand as is. D.C. will end up allowing the registration of pistols and Chicago will continue being Chicago owing to massive inertia.

Deanimator
September 6, 2007, 11:01 AM
Deanimator--you hit it on the money and made me spill my coffee--but don't you miss the pizza?

I honestly don't think that the SCOTUS is going to hear the case. They will let the ruling stand as is. D.C. will end up allowing the registration of pistols and Chicago will continue being Chicago owing to massive inertia.
Food USED to be what I considered one of the only good things about Chicago, but even that's been trashed by the Daley administration. Almost every side street on the North Side is now "permit only" parking. You're more likely to see Dick Daley tell the truth than to see main street parking. When I was in Chicago last Christmas, I discovered that that plague has spread to the South Side as well. Potentially, parking could cost more than dinner. I don't need those hassles. Pizzeria Uno used to have stores here in Cleveland. I guess Clevelanders couldn't handle good food on a large scale. But then I have described Cleveland as the place where, "Mayonaise on white bread is considered spicy ethnic food".

As far as the USC not hearing the case, it might be possible to craft a similar case for the District Court in Illinois that won in DC. That would require the Daley Junta to reopen the registration rolls to everybody, not just cops, city council members, people with bribes and Daley's flunkies.

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