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His Majesty, Sir Richard, on Heller...

Discussion in 'Legal' started by IndianaDon, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. IndianaDon

    IndianaDon New Member

    Apr 27, 2004
  2. Len S

    Len S Member

    Nov 13, 2006
    The Chicago Tribune is calling for the 2nd amendment to be repealed.

    No, we don’t suppose that’s going to happen any time soon. But it should.

    The 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is evidence that, while the founding fathers were brilliant men, they could have used an editor.

    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.

    If the founders had limited themselves to the final 14 words, the amendment would have been an unambiguous declaration of the right to possess firearms. But they didn’t and it isn’t. The amendment was intended to protect the authority of the states to organize militias. The inartful wording has left the amendment open to public debate for more than 200 years. But in its last major decision on gun rights, in 1939, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously found that that was the correct interpretation.

    On Tuesday, five members of the court edited the 2nd Amendment. In essence, they said: Scratch the preamble, only 14 words count. (Click here to read the full decision)

    In doing so, they have curtailed the power of the legislatures and the city councils to protect their citizens.

    The majority opinion in the 5-4 decision to overturn a Washington, D.C., ban on handgun possession goes to great lengths to parse the words of the 2nd Amendment. The opinion, written by Justice Antonin Scalia, spends 11 1/2 pages just on the meaning of the words "keep and bear arms."

    But as Justice John Paul Stevens wrote in a compelling dissent, the five justices in the majority found no new evidence that the 2nd Amendment was intended to limit the power of government to regulate the use of firearms. They found no new evidence to overturn decades of court precedent.

    They have claimed, Stevens wrote, "a far more active judicial role in making vitally important national policy decisions than was envisioned at any time in the 18th, 19th, or 20th centuries."

    It’s a relief that the majority didn’t go further in its policy-making on gun control.

    The majority opinion states that the D.C. handgun ban and a requirement for trigger locks violate the 2nd Amendment. By virtue of this decision, Chicago’s 1982 ban on handguns is not likely to survive a court challenge. A lawsuit seeking to overturn the Chicago ordinance was filed on Thursday by the Illinois State Rifle Association.

    The majority, though, did state that the right under the 2nd Amendment "is not unlimited." So what does that mean? The majority left room for state and local governments to restrict the carrying of concealed weapons in public, to prohibit weapons in "sensitive places such as schools and government buildings," and to regulate the sale of firearms. The majority allowed room for the prohibition of "dangerous and unusual weapons." It did not stipulate what weapons are not "dangerous."

    Lower courts are going to be mighty busy figuring out all of this.

    We can argue about the effectiveness of municipal handgun bans such as those in Washington and Chicago. They have, at best, had limited impact. People don’t have to go far beyond the city borders to buy a weapon that’s prohibited within the city. (Click here for gun-related crime statistics)

    But neither are these laws overly restrictive. Citizens have had the right to protect themselves in their homes with other weapons, such as shotguns.

    Some view this court decision as an affirmation of individual rights. But the damage in this ruling is that it takes a significant public policy issue out of the hands of citizens. The people of Washington no longer have the authority to decide that, as a matter of public safety, they will prohibit handgun possession within their borders.

    Chicago and the nation saw a decline in gun violence over the last decade or so, but recent news has been ominous. The murder rate in Chicago has risen 13 percent this year. Guns are still the weapon of choice for mayhem in the U.S. About 68 percent of all murders in 2006 were committed with a firearms, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

    Repeal the 2nd Amendment? Yes, it’s an anachronism.

    We won’t repeal the amendment, but at least we can have that debate.

    Want to debate whether crime-staggered cities should prohibit the possession of handguns? The Supreme Court has just said, forget about it.


    What would they say if the government tried to get rid of the 1st or 5th because they were unpopular with some segments of society?

    Len S
  3. jaak

    jaak member

    Mar 8, 2007
    i loved reading that, i got a really good laugh out of it. those are the types of people i refuse to talk to, because its like yelling at a brick wall. doesnt matter what you tell them, its always, "but but blah blah blah."

    i am glad to see they have their panties in a bunch. we need to give them the atomic wedgy next :)
  4. Zoogster

    Zoogster Senior Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    Huh what? The entire Bill of Rights was created as a limitation on what the government could do. Not what the people had the right to do, but what the government did not have authority to stop.
    In the case of the 2nd it goes even further from the context of the other 10 Amendments and says "Shall not be infringed".

    So both the context of the Bill of Rights, which is itself a limit on what the government can do, and the "Shall not be infringed" seems rather clear to me.
  5. DoubleTapDrew

    DoubleTapDrew Mentor

    Feb 23, 2006
    Lets repeal ALL the amendments in Chicago for a couple years. Then try to get 'em back when Daly decides he likes it that way and isn't going to let them vote.
  6. 30 cal slob

    30 cal slob Senior Member

    Mar 2, 2004
    Location, Location!

  7. Vibe

    Vibe New Member

    May 20, 2004
    Arkansas, USA
    What other decision was possible in Miller? There were no defendants or defense to offer oposing arguments. In many ways the Court protected the 2nd admirably in light if that discrepency.
  8. VirginiaShooter

    VirginiaShooter New Member

    Jun 24, 2008
    Lets see, a second-rate newspaper hack is critiquing the legal opinion of five of the most brilliant legal minds in America today. Does anyone really buy into this garbage?
  9. rugerman07

    rugerman07 Active Member

    Apr 6, 2007
    Southern Illinois
    The Chicago Tribune should change the name of their newspaper to the Daley Tribune....lol.
  10. 19-3Ben

    19-3Ben Mentor

    Nov 5, 2006
    Ahhh yes, but VAshooter, something you are not taking into account is that when people agree with a more conservative point of view, they are automatically stupid (in the mind of ding-bats like this) so of course he has a right to critique them.
  11. BryanP

    BryanP Senior Member

    May 25, 2003
    Lavergne, TN
    If we repeal the 2nd Amendment I'd say we should replace it with a new one with just those infamous final 14 words and be done with it.
  12. El Tejon

    El Tejon Elder

    Dec 24, 2002
    Lafayette, Indiana-the Ned Flanders neighbor to Il
    If we get to replace it, make firearm ownership mandatory and a condition to vote.
  13. shdwfx

    shdwfx Active Member

    Feb 3, 2008
    Go Bucks!
    I'd vote for that.
  14. Zoogster

    Zoogster Senior Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    If any part of the Bill of Rights is every repealed the government will no longer be the same one, and will not even be able to pretend it is based on the same thing.
    The Bill of Rights is as much a permanent part of the Republic as the different branches of government created by the constitutution.

    Every other Amendment came later, but the first 10 are part of the framework.

    If the framework is changed, all credibility of that government and what it stands for will be lost.

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