Second Amendment Case

This could make for some interesting times

The justices are facing a decision about whether to hear an appeal from city officials in Washington, D.C., wanting to keep the capital’s 31-year ban on handguns. A lower court struck down the ban as a violation of the Second Amendment rights of gun ownership.
The prospect that the high court might define gun rights under the Constitution is making people on both sides of the issue nervous.

I would hope that the Court would use this as a chance to clearly say “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
Oh wait, the Constitution already says that.

14 Responses to “Second Amendment Case”

  1. Skyler says:

    This case is why I no longer support the NRA. I used to do so, while holding my nose, but I was always so furious that in over 100 years they have not brought a case to the Supreme Court.
    Now finally, one man has done so, explicitly without assistance from anyone else.
    So who needs the NRA? If this case gets settled rationally, and it appears it will be, then we will no longer have our rights of gun ownership in jeopardy again.
    The NRA exists for only one reason: To get money from people by scaring them about gun rights. There will be no reason to be afraid if the court does its job right.
    But I’m sure no matter what the court says, someone will interpret it to mean something else.

  2. Mr. Bingley says:

    Well, you may be right, skyler, but correct me if i’m wrong but i thought it is the supreme court which decides which cases it will hear, not the people bringing them? my understanding was that the SCOTUS has been avoiding this hot potato?

  3. Skyler says:

    yeah, but before the Supreme Court can hear a case, one must be brought to them first.
    It even got to the point that a few years ago, Clarence Thomas was reduced to begging in one of the court’s opinions for someone to bring the issue to court.
    The Supreme Court has not be avoiding it, no one has been bringing anything to them. And certainly not the NRA.
    In fairness, the NRA is very clear that they like to work through the legislature, but that has just masked the fact that they aren’t using all the tools available to fight for gun rights. After all, the courts don’t need lobbyists. If the courts protected gun rights from legislative confiscations, there would be no reason to have an NRA except for Eddie Eagle type programs, and those don’t keep the NRA people employed in any great numbers.

  4. Mr. Bingley says:

    Of course, perhaps they’ve been somewhat afraid of the Court’s composition over the past 30 years.

  5. Skyler says:

    Yeah, but what about the 70 years prior to that?

  6. Mr. Bingley says:

    There was no need then, as gun rights were not under attack.

  7. Dave J says:

    “The Supreme Court has not be avoiding it, no one has been bringing anything to them.”
    I don’t recall specifically, but didn’t the losing party in Emerson petition the Court for cert? Which the Court decided not to grant, letting the Fifth Circuit’s opinion stand? It’s not that nothing at all’s been brought to them yet: rather, that the Court’s been waiting for clear doctrinal conflict to emerge between the circuits for them to resolve.

  8. Skyler says:

    Yes, the Supreme Court denied cert in Emerson, but that wasn’t a Second Amendment case so much as it was a sentencing case. It also was about a felon in possession of a handgun.
    This is hardly a case that would settle whether the second amendment is a state’s right or individual right. All that case did was determine whether states can punish a felon for being in possession of a firearm and who bore the burden of showing that the crime fell within certain categories of sentencing guidelines.
    Or so I get from a quick skim of the case.

  9. Okay, no time or energy to look up to be sure, but I don’t think Emerson involved a felon, it was someone under a domestic restraining order. The Fifth Circuit upheld a private right to keep and bear arms, but held that it is constitutional to restrict it from people under restraining orders.

  10. Skyler says:

    From LexisNexis:
    United States v. Emerson, 223 Fed. Appx. 496
    “PROCEDURAL POSTURE: Defendant appealed the 262-month sentence imposed by the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois following his conviction for possessing a firearm as a felon and two counts of possessing with intent to distribute cocaine base, violations of 18 U.S.C.S. § 922(g)(1) and 21 U.S.C.S. § 841(a)(1), b(1)(B), b(1)(C). The sentence was at the low end of the advisory guidelines range”

  11. So Skyler, do you know which case I’m thinking of? Texas case involving a guy under a restraining order in (I think) a divorce case. I thought it was Emerson.

  12. Skyler says:

    Sounds familiar but that isn’t the name of the case.
    But as I recall the facts of that case, whatever its name, is about a man who because of specific legal actions against him was deprived of his right to carry a weapon.
    This would not make a good case for the court to use to settle the meaning of the second amendment. It is too loaded with other problems. That is, even if the court believes in an individual right to keep and bear arms, there is no way in this green earth that they will rule that governments have no power to curtail that right through due process.
    We don’t have a complete and unfettered right to free speech and they will not consider that we have a complete and unfettered right to bear arms. I wish that weren’t the case, but it is.
    Such a case would be too messy for that issue.

  13. Skyler says:

    Also, I’m now reading that the court is not being granted cert.

  14. Skyler says:

    Er, the court is not granting cert on this case.
    Sometimes my brain isn’t engaged in my syntax.

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