Thursday, June 26, 2008

2nd Amendment

The Supreme Court has just voted 5-4 to uphold the right to bare arms for individuals (militias).

This is really scary to think this just barely squeaked by 5-4 with Justices Ginsburg, Souter, Breyer and Stevens dissenting.

Makes you kind of worry about who'll be in office to replace any of the present Justices.

5-4 Ruling

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Americans have a right to own guns for self-defense and hunting, the justices' first major pronouncement on gun rights in U.S. history.

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

The court had not conclusively interpreted the Second Amendment since its ratification in 1791. The amendment reads: "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 basic issue for the justices was whether the amendment protects an individual's right to own guns no matter what, or whether that right is somehow tied to service in a state militia. MORE

I'm having a hard time understanding the dissenters arguments on interpreting the 'Framers', our Foundings Fathers thoughts when this amendment was penned.

In a dissent he summarized from the bench, Justice John Paul Stevens wrote that the majority "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."
He said such evidence "is nowhere to be found."

Justice Stephen Breyer wrote a separate dissent in which he said, "In my view, there simply is no untouchable constitutional right guaranteed by the Second Amendment to keep loaded handguns in the house in crime-ridden urban areas."

It almost like re-writing history to one's own liking.

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