Latest gun ruling a case of conservative judicial activism

Two years ago, in District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court took the unprecedented step of ruling that the Second Amendment guarantee of the right to bear arms was an individual right rather than a right tied to a “well-regulated militia.” Today, in McDonald v. City of Chicago, it ruled 5-4 that state and local governments are as bound by that interpretation as the federal government, a step that greatly restricts their ability to legislate in that arena.

Symbolically, the ruling is a big victory for the gun lobby. But its practical effect is another matter. A decade or two ago, when hot political battles were still being fought over gun control, rulings such as these would have had significant impact. But the truth is that the single-minded passion of gun-rights advocates long routed their opponents in the political arena, making gun-control arguments in the political arena all but moot.

In that sense, the Supreme Court is merely following the election returns, as Mr. Dooley long ago noted.

But it will be interesting to see how the issue plays out. In Heller, the court wrote repeatedly of the constitutional right to self-defense and singled out handguns as “the most preferred firearm in the nation to ‘keep’ and use for protection of one’s home and family.” Heller also noted that the right to bear arms is NOT “a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.”

In addition, Heller expressly did not apply to “laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.”

As Justice Stephen Breyer notes in his dissent, the rulings in Heller and McDonald strip power from state and local governments and place it in the hands not just of the federal government, but of the federal courts. In its centralization of power, its rejection of precedent and and its investment of legislative power in the courts, the court has taken a decidedly activist role.

In fact, Breyer notes, it requires judges, not legislatures, to now address a variety of questions regarding the costs and benefits of various firearms restrictions:

“Does the right to possess weapons for self-defense extend outside the home? To the car? To work? What sort of guns are necessary for self-defense? Handguns? Rifles? Semiautomatic weapons? When is a gun semi-automatic? Where are different kinds of weapons likely needed? Does time of day matter? Does the presence of a child in the house matter? Does the presence of a convicted felon in the house matter? Do police need special rules permitting patdowns designed to find guns? When do registration requirements become severe to the point that they amount to an unconstitutional ban? Who can possess guns and of what kind? Aliens? Prior drug offenders? Prior alcohol abusers? How would the right (to self-defense) interact with a state or local government’s ability to take special measures during, say, national security emergencies?”

“Legislators,” Breyer notes, “are able to ‘amass the stuff of actual experience and cull conclusions from it.’ United States v. Gainey, 380 U. S. 63, 67 (1965). They are far better suited than judges to uncover facts and to understand their relevance. And legislators, unlike Article III judges, can be held democratically responsible for their empirically based and value-laden conclusions.”

The Supreme Court — the ostensibly conservative, anti-activist, pro-states’ rights Roberts court — has taken those decisions out of the hands of legislatures and city councils and placed them in the hands of its colleagues in the federal judiciary.

619 comments Add your comment

TW

June 28th, 2010
11:50 am

There’s a good chance this Court might give us our slaves back.

Bill

June 28th, 2010
11:51 am

The right for an individual has been clearly stated by our Founding Fathers. Any law-abiding citizen should be able to obtain and use a firearm for personal protection. I do not see how the second amendment can be interpreted otherwise. Use your same argument against the 1st amendment and see how that sits with yourself.

md

June 28th, 2010
11:52 am

“The Supreme Court — the ostensibly conservative, anti-activist, pro-states’ rights Roberts court — has taken those decisions out of the hands of legislatures and city councils and placed them in the hands of its colleagues in the federal judiciary.”

Bull. The court said the States may legislate as long as they follow the constitution – which by definition gives the right to bear arms.

I for one applaud the decision that keeps only the criminals from possessing.

Police respond to crime, very rarely prevent it.

Marko

June 28th, 2010
11:55 am

Poor Jay.
First Byrd just had a “dalliance” with the KKK.
And now, the court reaffirming a right spelled forth in the constitution is “activism”.
Please try again Jay. Even for you this is weak.

Doggone/GA

June 28th, 2010
11:56 am

“I do not see how the second amendment can be interpreted otherwise”

I agree. I have never seen the validity of the argument that the right to bear arms ONLY applies as it relates to a militia. Since a “militia” in that context is a citizen army, and at the time it was written the militias relied on the citizens to provide their own weapons, it has always read to me as an individual right to own a gun.

But, that does not mean ANY gun, under ANY circumstances. There’s also no doubt that there are a lot of “weapons” out there that go beyond what is needed for self-protection, or even for militia purposes…especially in today’s world where citizens are not expected to provide their own militia weapons.

TW

June 28th, 2010
11:57 am

For every ONE time someone claims to have used a firearm to successfully defend their person, there are SEVENTEEN accidental deaths resulting from firearms – many of which involve children finding them in the closet of the parent retard who put it there unsecured.

With the N* word no longer socially acceptable, the right takes every measure to ensure that the streets of our inner-cities remain saturated with fire-power.

Jefferson

June 28th, 2010
11:59 am

Swami Dave

June 28th, 2010
12:00 pm

Sorry Jay. Upholding the Constitution and the rights that it affords individuals is not “activism”.

Good try though. I understand the pain that it must be causing so many liberals that they are finding it more and more difficult to advance through the Judiciary an agenda that they could never gain legislatively.

-SD

RB from Gwinnett

June 28th, 2010
12:02 pm

“The Supreme Court — the ostensibly conservative, anti-activist, pro-states’ rights Roberts court — has taken those decisions out of the hands of legislatures and city councils and placed them in the hands of its colleagues in the federal judiciary.”

Obvious to any thinking man, Jay, they had to act because liberally ruled cities such as DC and Chicago had taken it upon themselves to enact laws that are clearly in violation of the constitution. And the stupid rules required to get a concealed carry permit or a permit to buy a handgun ARE a form of a ban. You have to take a day off work and go hang out with some of our finest hard working government employees in multiple locations. It’s quite clear the “multiple locations” part of that is intended to make it difficult to complete the process.

Will you liberals ever figure out it’s not the law abiding gun owners you need to worry about and criminals aren’t going to follow any of your well meaning rules? Yes, I get the occasional nut case going off with a gun, but you and the rest of us know that is NOT the bulk of the problem.

Doggone/GA

June 28th, 2010
12:02 pm

“Upholding the Constitution and the rights that it affords individuals is not “activism”. ”

I don’t know…maybe Jay will come back and clarify his uses of that word, but *I* read it as sarcasm. As in: when the court makes a decision you don’t like, it’s “activism” but when they make a decision you DO like it “following the constitution”

md

June 28th, 2010
12:02 pm

“For every ONE time someone claims to have used a firearm to successfully defend their person, there are SEVENTEEN accidental deaths resulting from firearms – many of which involve children finding them in the closet of the parent retard who put it there unsecured.”

And can you provide the stats for those seventeen in regards to legal vs illegal possession? How many will occur regardless of gun laws?? Stupid people do stupid things – that is a given.

stands for decibels

June 28th, 2010
12:06 pm

The Supreme Court — [...] ostensibly conservative, anti-activist, pro-states’ rights

ha ha. Jay make a funny.

josef nix

June 28th, 2010
12:07 pm

5-4 decision–what was the beakdown of “fer” and “agin?”

Southern Comfort

June 28th, 2010
12:08 pm

Dang it, Jay!! I made it thru the first thread without losing my cool. I don’t think I can make it thru two as I know there will be some ludicrous (not to be confused with Ludacris) stuff said here. I’m gone to go play Madden football. I think that would be more productive than sitting through this one.

See y’all later.

mike

June 28th, 2010
12:08 pm

OK, can we all agree that partisans of both sides will reflexively bellow “judicial activism” when a ruling does not go their way, regardless of the relevance of the term to the ruling in question?

It reminds me of that line from A Fish Called Wanda:

“Monkeys don’t read Nietzsche? Yes they do, Otto, they just don’t understand it. …”

Jefferson

June 28th, 2010
12:10 pm

Well you could beat your chest like Tarzan, but why look or act like a fool.

stands for decibels

June 28th, 2010
12:11 pm

As in: when the court makes a decision you don’t like, it’s “activism” but when they make a decision you DO like it “following the constitution”

see also: “Legislating from the bench.”

electrician

June 28th, 2010
12:11 pm

TW…i’m having a hard time connecting that last paragraph with the “right”,the number of firearms in the inner cities,that would be due to a number of things,icluding those law abiding inner city dwellers who choose to be armed, ahd what in the world does that have to do with the N* word?

stands for decibels

June 28th, 2010
12:11 pm

what was the beakdown of “fer” and “agin?”

You really have to ask?

Robyn

June 28th, 2010
12:13 pm

One just knew the leftist would have fits over the latest 2nd amendment ruling by SCOTUS. They think only freedom of the press is an individual right. Wrong again. They also think that any ruling against them is always judicial activism. What a bunch of losers.

Doggone/GA

June 28th, 2010
12:13 pm

“see also: “Legislating from the bench.” ”

Yep…and to date I have never seen anyone who uses either of those terms ever come up with a definition for them.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

June 28th, 2010
12:13 pm

Did they say anything about my right to carry the anti-tank weapon and the two machine guns I use for hunting and self-defense? If I can carry those into a restaurant or a bar, I’ll be looked on as the biggest, baddest mutha in the whole state. I’ll outgun any cops they can put up against me.

Anyhow, this just goes to show how slick Alito and Roberts and Scalia were in not answering the librul Democrats questions straight up during their hearings. We got a good solid Conservative SC now and I can’t hardly wait till they strike down all this Equal Rights junk. And that’s why we got to hold Tea Party rallys against this Kagan woman the Kenyan wants to put on the court.

See what happens when you get rid of Activists and put Strict Constructionists on the courts?

Have a good p.m. everybody. And don’t you dare get in my way from now on.

Peadawg

June 28th, 2010
12:13 pm

“With the N* word no longer socially acceptable”

LOL! You must not watch BET. It’s plenty acceptable between the N’s themselves.

josef nix

June 28th, 2010
12:15 pm

decibles

Yes, I do…

andygrd

June 28th, 2010
12:16 pm

As a concealed carry permit holder, it was the right decisions. For 99% of the honest and legal population, laws will be followed. For the 1% nut jobs, no matter what law is enacted, there will individuals that break the law. What we need to do, is prosecute the offenders to the fullest extent of the law.
I am a retired military officer, 60 years of age, and can still place a tight patter at 21 feet. I am also a member of the NRA, and I joined just about a year ago. I very seldom carry a gun, mostly when my wife and I travel. I hope that I will never, ever have to use my gun for self defense. I hope that I can always protect my family by other means. If it is a material item, take it, I can replace it. If you threaten my life, or that of a member of my family, I will go toe to toe with you. You will never know I have it, and in states when you can open carry, you still will never see it, I don’t believe in that.
In Chicago recently, if I am not mistaken, from 6:00 pm on a Friday to 6:00 am on a Monday, there were over 40 shootings, reported on ABC and others. I don’t think those involved were law abiding citizens. I think we need tougher laws governing the purchase of handguns. I think better investigations are required to protect the innocents.
After 20 years in the military, I never witnessed a gun just going off and shooting someone. I have seen human errors that caused guns to discharge. If you are going to own a gun, attend training and then practice, practice and practice.

Anny Okee

June 28th, 2010
12:17 pm

Who needs an escort to the clinic Saturday morning? Little Smiffy and I are ready to protect you from the oppressors of your rights.

RB from Gwinnett

June 28th, 2010
12:17 pm

TW, how many accidental drowning deaths are there in swimming pools and lakes every year? Should we ban those too? Accidents happen. No amount of warning labels on ladders will keep idiots from falling off them. No amount of “the coffee is HOT” labels will keep idiots from burning themselves.

And is there a mental block liberals have with the fact criminals don’t follow gun laws anyway? Want evidence?? See DC and Chicago crime stats.

Normal

June 28th, 2010
12:17 pm

Hell, bring back the “Old West” mentality. Everybody wears sidearms and if someone disses you, gun ‘em down. We’d become a nation of good manners, I betcha.

Oh, and Peadawg,
From downstairs. We’ve argued about this a hundred times, but Afghanistan was the “war” that needed fighting to bring OBL to heel. President Bush had other “Priorities (political gain)” and didn’t finish the job. President Obama inherited it and tried, is trying to fix the unfixable. This is why I say, if he escalates or stays much longer, then he is doing so at his own political peril and he won’t be forgiven. It’s way past time to bring our people home.

Oh the horror

June 28th, 2010
12:17 pm

“Today, in McDonald v. City of Chicago, it ruled 5-4 that state and local governments are as bound by that interpretation as the federal government, a step that greatly restricts their ability to legislate in that arena.”

Oh the horror! The states are prohibited from legislating away the constitutional rights of citizens. What is this great nation coming to?

Disgusted

June 28th, 2010
12:19 pm

Yes, I do…

5 to 4, with the usual suspects voting against–Stevens, Ginsberg, Sotomayor, Breyer. We got us a conservative Supreme Court, jnix, so don’t count on getting any rulings in your favor any time soon.

NowReally

June 28th, 2010
12:22 pm

I thought conservatives were for local and states rights. Well if you can’t beat them, join them. AK 47 anyone? :)

Plain Jane

June 28th, 2010
12:22 pm

Q. Why not amend the constitution to ban private gun ownership?
A. The vast majority of voters know better than stateist totalitarians like you. Ask yourself if I hate the American way so much why hav’nt I moved to France?

stands for decibels

June 28th, 2010
12:23 pm

Yes, I do…

Well, whenever I see the words “5-4″ affiliated with something that gladdens the hearts of the local righties, I more or less assume it’s

Balls and Strikes
Long Dong
Fat Tony
Stripsearch Sammy
&
At Least I’m not Bork

in the “5″ column.

mrs. w.

June 28th, 2010
12:23 pm

Glock and 357. They are mine and you can’t have them.

Outhouse GoKart

June 28th, 2010
12:23 pm

TWs post is stupid, devoid of any reasoning and more excuse making. In other words about as useful as *POOT*.

josef nix

June 28th, 2010
12:24 pm

Disgusted..
And what makes you think I disagree with this decision?

Joe Frank

June 28th, 2010
12:25 pm

But I thought you supported judicial activism? What am I to think? What am I to believe?

Outhouse GoKart

June 28th, 2010
12:26 pm

“Everybody wears sidearms and if someone disses you, gun ‘em down.”

Isnt that being tried in S Dekalb, S Fulton and Atlanta? Well they dont wear them outside their clothing but…

Cornell Law Student

June 28th, 2010
12:27 pm

It’s clear that you’re not a lawyer, Bookman. I love how you quoted Breyer on expanding the power of the courts. It highlights the absurdity in your critism of this decision. Stevens and Breyer have trumpeted due process for ages and now balk when it encompasses a right they don’t like? The decision of the Court followed precedent that the liberal justices have supported for years. It’s honestly shocking that they dissented at all. Maybe Thomas is onto something about throwing out substantive due process altogether.

I guess that’s what journalists like to do, though–write ignorantly about things they don’t understand.

Granny Godzilla

June 28th, 2010
12:33 pm

I’d take the SCOTUS ruling more seriously if they practiced what they preached.

Those conservative activist Judges won’t let a gun be carried into their place of business now will they?

md

June 28th, 2010
12:34 pm

“I thought conservatives were for local and states rights.”

Can you show us where the States ever had the “right” to alter the constitution??

booger

June 28th, 2010
12:35 pm

Judicial activism is interpreting the constitution differently than it is written, and intended by our founders. Since this was written, and has been consistently interpreted in much the same way, this is a court doing their job.

Now if Bookman defines judicial activism as ruling in a fashion with witch he disagrees, i supposed his contention is correct.

TGT

June 28th, 2010
12:36 pm

The Court has taken a decidedly CONSTITUTIONAL view of the right to keep and bear arms. A view that most of the country agrees with. It is only the most radically liberal areas of the country (i.e. D.C., Chicago) that chose to ignore the Constitution and rob its citizens of the chance to defend themselves, and which they have only in recent years decided to take such radical action. It’s amazing that liberals can find the right to kill a child in the womb in the U.S. Constitution, but not the right to keep and/or bear arms, a right so significant that it is expressly stated.

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:36 pm

And when you have your degree and passed the Bar exam and have a few years under your belt in Constitutional law, Cornell Law Student, hopefully you’ll be able to understand distinctions.

For a good example of that, you may want to read here:

http://libertymaven.com/2010/06/28/supreme-court-says-2nd-amendment-applies-to-the-states-in-a-5-4-decision/10097/

Here are the results according to the SCOTUS blog:

* Alito announces McDonald v. Chicago: reversed and remanded
* Gun rights prevail
* The opinion concludes that the 14th Amendment does incorporate the Second Amendment right recognized in Heller to keep and bear arms in self defense
* Stevens dissents for himself. Breyer dissents, joined by Ginsburg and Sotomayor.
* The majority seems divided, presumably on the precise standard
* The majority Justices do not support all parts of the Alito opinion, but all five agree that the 2d Amendment applies to state and local government.
* Alito, in the part of the opinion joined by three Justices, concludes that the 2d Amendment is incorporated through the Due Process Clause.
* Thomas thinks the Amendment is incorporated, but not under Due Process. He appears to base incorporation on Privileges or Immunities.
* The difference between the majority and Justice Thomas doesn’t affect the fact that the Second Amendment now applies to state and local regulation.
* Full Opinion is here.
* It should be noted that, in the guns case, the Court says explicitly in Alito’s opinion that it would not reconsider the Slaughterhouse cases, which almost completely deprive the Privileges or Immunities Clause of any constitutional meaning.
* The opinion leaves the fate of the Chicago gun ordinance in the hands of the 7th Circuit on remand.

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:37 pm

Hi Granny Godzilla!

The decision specifically addressed that not all weapons are covered and not all locations are open.

N-GA

June 28th, 2010
12:37 pm

If states and/or municipalities cannot legislate what type of guns can be owned by their citizens, then they should legislate mandatory registration of all firearms and make possession of an unregistered weapon a felony punishable by: 1) mandatory jail time and 2) loss of the right to own a weapon.

md

June 28th, 2010
12:37 pm

The court obviously agreed with Shatner:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0D78JtxmqI

I love that one……………..

chainshaw

June 28th, 2010
12:38 pm

Re-affirming our Constitutional rights is not activism. If they had re-affirmed our right to free speech, you wouldn’t have said a word.

Wipe your chin off, Jay. The Democratic Party left a little something on it.

Shawny

June 28th, 2010
12:38 pm

Good decision.

Supporting the Chicago’s ability to take away possession is more ‘activist’ than denying the city the ability to legislate that right away.

Legislate away that right, and then only criminals have them. Way to go SCOTUS (except the 4 libs).

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:39 pm

What I’m interested in in the aftermath of this decision is how it affects NRA contributions and what tactics they’ll use to frighten people into donating more. There’ll likely be more cases dealing with the issues not addressed, so those coffers may not show much of a reduction. Then again, neither will LaPierre’s salary or expense account or the other top NRA officials -

TGT

June 28th, 2010
12:40 pm

Enter your comments here

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:40 pm

Good suggestion, N-GA.

A little on the light side as far as penalties go, but a good suggestion nonetheless -

TGT

June 28th, 2010
12:40 pm

joe matarotz

June 28th, 2010
12:42 pm

Imagine the nerve of the Supreme Court in upholding the Constitution! What were they thinking?
They sure aren’t like the left-wing liberal administration that Jay adores. Obama the Magnificent just ignores the Constitution, like it never existed. On the other hand, it sure didn’t look like he had much success in convincing the rest of the G-20 attendees that they need to spend their way out of the recession. Obama grasp of the world economy makes Bush look like a genius. (Sorry, Jay, someone has to tell the truth.)

Jay

June 28th, 2010
12:42 pm

No Booger, the term for a ruling that misinterprets the Constitution is “wrong.”

“Judicial activism” involves a subset of “wrong;” i.e., the claim that judges are usurping decisions that are better made in the legislative branch, substituting their judgment for the judgment of those elected by the people.

Or at least, that’s the definition when liberals do it.

jconservative

June 28th, 2010
12:42 pm

Expected decision based on what the Court did in the Heller decision. And the strong resemblance to the words of Heller were expected. Those lovers of the 14th Amendment’s “Due Process Clause” just received another vase of roses.

You 10th Amendment lovers just took another hit.

But we 2nd Amendment lovers need to look closely at Justice Alito’s words just as we looked closely at Justice Scalia’s words in Heller.
Alito’s words: “In Heller, we held that the Second Amendment protects the right to possess a handgun in the home for the purpose of self-defense….We made it clear in Heller that our holding did not cast doubt on such longstanding regulatory measures as ‘prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill,’ laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings,’… We repeat those assurances here. Despite municipal respondents’ doomsday proclamations, incorporation does not imperil every law regulating firearms.”

Note the words “…the Second Amendment protects the right to possess a handgun in the home for the purpose of self-defense.” Whether I can carry a .38 under my armpit to a UGA football game is still open to debate.

But the bottom line is that after 219 years the Court has ruled that the 2nd Amendment applies to the States. And although expected, it is still great news.

But Goodman is correct on one point; the Federal judiciary is a gonna be real busy for a few years.

Cornell Law Student

June 28th, 2010
12:45 pm

Gee, thanks for the summary Paul.

The dissents were based on ideology, not the law. I am able to make fine distinctions. The dinstinction Stevens offers is absurd. Read Scalia’s amusing concurrence.

As for your experience advice, the first thing you learn in law school is how Con Law is like sausage making. Both sides have ignored the law for political purposes. I’m not saying the conservative justices are always right. What I’m saying is that the author of this article has it completely wrong as to which justices were following politics in this decision.

NowReally

June 28th, 2010
12:46 pm

md

June 28th, 2010
12:34 pm

Well I would assume you are okay with a criminal keeping his “Right” to bear arms, since the Constitution doesn’t have any exceptions to it. :)

The constitution doesn’t say you have the “right” to vote; unless you are an ex felon; but many states have decided to make it part of their mantra.

TM

June 28th, 2010
12:47 pm

For some history of why we need this individual right read the opinion pages 22 to 26 when certain southern states tried to take all weapons away form blacks after the civil war.

Outhouse GoKart

June 28th, 2010
12:47 pm

Granny hates America.

Bubba

June 28th, 2010
12:48 pm

I knew somebody would invoke a “return to the Wild West days” analogy. Well, hopefully we will return to those days. The most infamous shootout of the era, the “Gunfight at the OK Corral,” killed a total of three people. In fact, history shows that despite the abundance of guns and gunfighters, gun deaths were relatively rare in the Old West.

Scout

June 28th, 2010
12:48 pm

“The Supreme Court — the ostensibly conservative, anti-activist, pro-states’ rights Roberts court — has taken those decisions out of the hands of legislatures and city councils and placed them in the hands of its colleagues in the federal judiciary.”

……………and that’s why we have the Bill of Rights (especially the 2nd Amendment as it protects all others) when the courts, the President, the Congress, State Legislatures or city governments/councils try to violate them.

This is a win FOR THE PEOPLE ……….. “the RIGHT OF THE PEOPLE to keep and bear arms” !

Ooo Rah !!!

jt

June 28th, 2010
12:49 pm

I’ve never really EVER cared what those guys said.

Andre

June 28th, 2010
12:49 pm

The supreme courts decision on gunrights today wasnt judicial activism it was simply athe only reading that the constitution allows Militias are not organized militarys but the citizens themselves.
The only reason You on the left want to take gun rights away is so that you can reenslave everyone. Yoiu on the left have not once been on the right side of any issue during slavery you were pro slavery and then after the civil war you backed segregation and discrimination It was president wilson for example that segregated the military for example and he was a leftist progressive. also it was the criminals that were running the ny police department in the early 20th century that passed the sullivan act requiring concealed weapons permits that only they could afford. on roe v wade you turned women into murderers even though real women like Susan B Anthony knew that someonone who has one is damned to hell and the person who forces her to it is thrice damned.

Jay

June 28th, 2010
12:50 pm

Cornell, I don’t disagree with your point about Breyer and due process.

Conversely, the conservative majority here does the same thing regarding judicial restraint, states’ rights, respect for precedent, etc., They too ditch principles in order to get where they want to be.

DebbieDoRight

June 28th, 2010
12:50 pm

Disgusted: 5 to 4, with the usual suspects voting against–Stevens, Ginsberg, Sotomayor, Breyer. We got us a conservative Supreme Court, jnix, so don’t count on getting any rulings in your favor any time soon.

I’m waiting patiently for Clarice Thomas to die of shame and humiliation, (for being white only on the inside) — THEN by golly we’d have an opening!!

mm

June 28th, 2010
12:51 pm

“I for one applaud the decision that keeps only the criminals from possessing.”

And exactly how is that being accomplished?

How many of the thugs that shot 29 people in Chicago over the weekend had legally obtained guns?

Badgers

June 28th, 2010
12:52 pm

If what this looney lefty writes is true, and courts cannot rule against local or state laws that disagree with a federal law or right.

Then there is no reason to complain about Arizona having a law about illegals eh? Its a local or state law, and the feds have a law but don’t enforce it.

In fact since states rights trump federal law or rights, then the Civil War was illegal and slavery should be legal! Oh wait….that cant be.

AMIRITE? YES!

Tip to the writer, find another job.

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:52 pm

Cornell

Good to hear. I think it’s a bit extreme to say dissents were based on ideology, not law. Ideology, as I understand it in this context, is holding onto views despite new evidence. The fact dissenting opinions cite case law does not make it ideological, just a different opinion. Which is what these decisions are – opinions.

I don’t get worked up much over cries of ‘this side or that side’ when it comes to court cases. I think one of Jay’s points in this is how conservatives align with the idea of states’ rights and having all powers not specifically given to the feds, etc…. yet when a case comes that lets them keep their handguns in their homes but makes the states follow the feds in this case, they pretty much avoid it in their responses.

mm

June 28th, 2010
12:52 pm

“The only reason You on the left want to take gun rights away is so that you can reenslave everyone.”

IGNORANT POST OF THE DAY!!

Robert Byrd (Democrat) KKK member since 1944

June 28th, 2010
12:53 pm

“I’m waiting patiently for Clarice Thomas to die of shame and humiliation”

Who is Clarice Thomas?

John Hardin

June 28th, 2010
12:53 pm

“Judicial Activism” is the court granting powers or responsibilities to the government that are not granted by the Constitution. It is _not_ the court saying “the Constitution means what it says”. It is _not_ the court saying “the Constitution does not grant the government that power, or assign it that responsibility.”

It’s not a matter of whether or not a law is wise or evenhanded or balances costs and benefits properly, it’s whether or not the legislature has been granted the power to pass any laws on that topic in the first place. When it comes to bearing arms, the Second Amendment is clear.

What’s tragic is that the decision was 5:4 rather than unanimous.

Dirty Harry

June 28th, 2010
12:53 pm

“I know what your thinking, did he fire 5 or 6 shots? Well in all the excitement I kinda lost track myself. But being as this is a 44 magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world and could blow your head clean off ya gotta ask yourself something. Do I feel lucky?

Well…do ya PUNK?!!”

Jay

June 28th, 2010
12:54 pm

And Bubba, part of the cause of the Gunfight at the OK Corral was the effort of law enforcement to uphold Tombstone’s gun-control law.

You know, the kind of law that is unAmerican?

Paul

June 28th, 2010
12:55 pm

Off topic

Kagan hearings live on NPR here

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128162164

I’m kinda interested in hearing how she justified violating the law while at Harvard re: the recruiters issue -

md

June 28th, 2010
12:56 pm

“Well I would assume you are okay with a criminal keeping his “Right” to bear arms, since the Constitution doesn’t have any exceptions to it.”

Since criminals follow their own law, they will assign their own rights regardless of what any court says, so their right to bear arms will never be taken away.

mm

June 28th, 2010
12:56 pm

Funny how the wingnuts defend the constitution when they aren’t trashing it.

Like the government spying on us.

Or taking away citizenship from children born in this country.

Bubba

June 28th, 2010
12:57 pm

I personally don’t think gun control laws are un-American. I think total bans unconstitutional. But after all, the Second Amendment never mentions guns. It says arms. And carried to its extreme, it could mean we all have a right to own a nuclear bomb.

pat

June 28th, 2010
12:57 pm

2nd ammendment 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.

How is this unclear?
I like how folks relate this ruling to bringing back slavery and racism. Is it not you who is engaging in racsim?

So I guess we can count on you liberals torching cars and rioting violently? Isn’t that the liberal way every time something you don’t like happens?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/27/g-20-protests-police-arrests_n_627051.html

md

June 28th, 2010
12:59 pm

“I for one applaud the decision that keeps only the criminals from possessing.”

And exactly how is that being accomplished?

How many of the thugs that shot 29 people in Chicago over the weekend had legally obtained guns?”

Huh??

Gun control, such as in Chicago and DC, allows only the criminals possession – it only removes the right from law abiding citizens of which those thugs you reference were not.

Doc Holliday

June 28th, 2010
1:00 pm

“I have two guns. One for each of ya”.

Doc Holliday

June 28th, 2010
1:01 pm

“I have not yet begun to defile myself. It’s true, you are a good woman. Then again, you may be the antichrist”.

Harold A. Maio

June 28th, 2010
1:01 pm

felons and “the” mentally ill
I have no problem finding a legal definition of “felons,” could you please supply me one for “the” mentally ill?

It rings familiarly. I recall it from history as “the” Blacks, and “the” Jews. Are we really still there?

I object to the above misrepresentation. And to journalism cooperating with it.

Gun laws state, the language may vary by state:
people, declared by a court a danger to themselves or others because of a mental illness, may not legally purchase firearms.
It is a small and discrete group.

Harold A. Maio, retired Mental Health Editor

Activist?

June 28th, 2010
1:01 pm

So, Mr. Bookman, you have adequately demonstrated you have no idea what judicial activism is. Congratulations.

P.S., incorporating an enumerated right through the 14th Amendment is “activist” in your mind. What say you of non-enumerated rights (abortion, unenumerated “privacy,” etc.)? Do you believe Roe and its progeny to be activist? Griswold? Where does “activist” end in your book? What is the dividing line? Or are you trying to draw a parallel between Roe and Heller/McDonald which is easily severed by the distinction I make between enumerated/unenumerated rights?

Paul

June 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

Matti

June 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

So… was this a blow for “states’ rights?” Does this mean local jurisdictions need to cut out this BS of banning things that are permitted by federal law? Excellent! To what other local attempts to take away a woman’s rights can we apply this logic?

md

June 28th, 2010
1:04 pm

“I don’t get worked up much over cries of ‘this side or that side’ when it comes to court cases. I think one of Jay’s points in this is how conservatives align with the idea of states’ rights and having all powers not specifically given to the feds, etc…. yet when a case comes that lets them keep their handguns in their homes but makes the states follow the feds in this case, they pretty much avoid it in their responses.”

The decision isn’t about States rights, it is about the constitution, there is a difference.

Doc Holliday

June 28th, 2010
1:05 pm

“And you must be Ringo. Look, darling, Johnny Ringo. The deadliest pistoleer since Wild Bill, they say. What do you think, darling? Should I hate him? Yes, but there’s just something about him. Something around the eyes, I don’t know, reminds me of… me. No. I’m sure of it, I hate him.”

Normal

June 28th, 2010
1:05 pm

Off topic, but a good read for the serious budget minded.
From The Navy Times…

Task force: Budget fix requires extreme cuts

By Lance M. Bacon – Staff writer
Posted : Monday Jun 28, 2010 5:52:59 EDT

Cut two carriers and 40 percent of new ballistic-missile subs, then slash the fleet to 230 ships and eight air wings. Terminate the F-35, Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle and V-22 Osprey. Drop down to six expeditionary strike groups, eliminate the maritime prepositioning force and place greater emphasis on surging smaller naval groups as needed.
These are but some of the eyebrow-raising recommendations provided to Congress on June 10 by the Sustainable Defense Task Force. The group was formed at the request of Reps. Barney Frank, D-Mass.; Walter B. Jones, R-N.C.; and Ron Paul, R-Texas; and Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. The task force proposal amounts to $1.1 trillion in defense cuts over 10 years. Slightly more than half of that amount comes from personnel budgets; the rest comes by cutting research, development and procurement of weapons systems.
While acknowledging that its recommendations will be hard for some to accept, the task force defended its report, saying a “significant number of the cuts that we propose and review represent outdated, wasteful and ineffective systems that could be foregone without any arguable impact on our national security.”
But not everyone is in full agreement — and that begins with one of the lawmakers who helped form the task force.
Jones told Navy Times that a strong military is absolutely necessary, but he requested the task force be formed because “this country is in very deep financial trouble, and I think it’s going to get worse.” He desires careful and complete review of federal spending — including defense spending — but said he does not agree with all of the task force’s recommendations. Specifically, he supports the continuation of the V-22 and opposes a reduction of Navy ships.

Normal: This is bad. The v-22 has become a disaster and, as ex-Navy
I know we don’t need that many ships. We would still have the most potent Navy in the world.

Jones said he is opposed to the number of worldwide bases the military now maintains.

Normal: This I agree with wholeheartedly!

“I don’t know how we can continue to support the bases, particularly these that have been in certain countries for over 60 or 70 years,” he said. “I think we have to be smarter with our situation.”
With an eye on diminishing budgets and rising tensions with Iran and North Korea, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead on June 24 called for continued international partnerships to hone a “just and sustainable international order.” He also continued his call for fiscal restraint, emphasizing that the Navy “cannot afford a tailor-made solution to every need that we have.”

Normal: I agree with this too.

But the CNO still is adamant that a 313-ship Navy is needed to maintain maritime security.
Loren Thompson, chief operating officer of Lexington Institute, a military consulting firm, said he “skimmed the report and moved on,” but also cautioned that the recommendations reflect the kind of political environment the Navy will be facing in the next decade.
“It will have to fight every budget year to prove the fleet is relevant,” he said. “We are talking about a country that is spending a trillion dollars each year it does not have. At some point, something has to give.”
Thompson took issue with, and laughed at, some of the report’s recommendations, notably that the military does not need a new fighter jet.
“The Super Hornet is a great aircraft,” Thompson said. “But the F-35 purchase covers the next four decades, and I’m not sure I would want to fly a non-stealthy aircraft against Chinese air defenses 20 years from now.”

Normal: Sometimes “good enough” will have to do in order to balance the budget, cut the deficit
\
Rep. Joe Courtney, D-Conn., also takes issue with some of the report’s recommendations — specifically, the call to reduce ballistic-missile subs to seven.

Normal: Remember where the submarines are built folks…

The plan for 12 new boomers to replace the retiring Ohio class is a standing point of contention, as it carries an $80 billion price tag. That would consume half of the Navy’s shipbuilding budget for 14 years.
While the task force looks to reduce boomers to save money, Courtney is looking for alternate funding. He wants to separate programs like SSBN(X) — the replacement for the Ohio class — from the military’s budget and place them in their own national security funding stream, in much the same way missile defense and sealift/auxiliary ships are funded.
He said that “no serious analysis” has said it is possible to meet mission requirements with fewer than 48 attack subs and 12 boomers: At that point, he said, “you’re ending up with shadow Navy.”

Normal: Not true at all. The Navy could use smaller carriers, cheaper diesel/electric subs and air frame refurbs/avionic upgrades
for the Hornets. Bottom line there is no navy out there that can touch ours in a shooting match. Enough
Is good enough. Want a balanced budget and reduced spending? This is a good start. We could use More teachers.

DebbieDoRight

June 28th, 2010
1:06 pm

Hey Granny!! Hey Paul!!

Granny: Those conservative activist Judges won’t let a gun be carried into their place of business now will they?

Why Granny, of course not….

Bubba – there were less people in those days. Trying shooting as many bullets in Dodge City now and see how many people will be accidentally shot.

OGK – U R UnAmerican…..AND u look like a troll to me……

Andre: The only reason You on the left want to take gun rights away is so that you can reenslave everyone. Yoiu on the left have not once been on the right side of any issue during slavery you were pro slavery and then after the civil war you backed segregation and discrimination It was president wilson for example that segregated the military for example and he was a leftist progressive.

Andre….(sigh)……..a mind really IS a terrible thing to waste….

Rob

June 28th, 2010
1:06 pm

“There’s a good chance this Court might give us our slaves back.”

An interesting statement, given that the constitutional principle that the court upheld today was one of the strongest acts AGAINST slavery ever taken by the citizens of the US. We ratified the 14th Amendment specifically to protect the rights of all Americans, especially of freed slaves, from state government infringement. And of the rights specifically described as fundamental in the effort to ratify this amendment, the Right to Keep and Bear arms was consistently listed as one of the most important. While the reactionary courts of the day frustrated the desires of the American people to protect this right through the 14th Amendment, in the 20th Century the Court began reinstating the power of the Bill of Rights against the states through the 14th Amendment, as was always intended. Today the Court just continued that process. Instead of being “judicial activism”, this is exactly the opposite. The court today took another major step in overturning what is virtually universally seen by all constitutional scholars on both sides of the political spectrum as the single worst case of judicial activism in US history – the gutting of the 14th Amendment. Bookman is just upset because he can’t accept that living in a free country means accepting that other people have rights too, even if they’re rights he doesn’t agree with or want for himself, so he slings mud. Of course, maybe he’s just completely ignorant of the history of constitutional law.

Cornell Law Student

June 28th, 2010
1:07 pm

@ Jay
The conservative majority might have ditched principles. They’ve done it before, like when Scalia decided to throw state’s rights under the bus in order to make marijuana illegal on a federal level. The question is whether they ditched the law. Substantive due process, with all of Blackmun’s emanations of penumbras, Roe, Lawrence, etc, IS the law of the land. The majority followed it because it suited them, but they still followed it.

md

June 28th, 2010
1:07 pm

“So… was this a blow for “states’ rights?” Does this mean local jurisdictions need to cut out this BS of banning things that are permitted by federal law? Excellent! To what other local attempts to take away a woman’s rights can we apply this logic?”

Again, “federal laws” and the “constitution” are 2 totally separate issues. The States are still more than welcome to legislate within the framework of the constitution – which the ruling clarifies.

DebbieDoRight

June 28th, 2010
1:09 pm

Who is Clarice Thomas?

The girly girl that’s one the Supreme Court…. DUH!! :roll:

Huckabee The Next POTUS 2013

June 28th, 2010
1:09 pm

hey mm, didn’t your precious obozo extend the ” government spying on us” and isn’t the irs going to moniter the health care of amerika. As for your last comment “Or taking away citizenship from children born in this country.” yep bad republicans. It is better with the dumpocrap plan of giving citizenship to every illegal criminal not born in this country and their rugrats, born here or not. Yes, a much better plan. Well perhaps we won’t be subjected to very much obozo bs the next few days as he plans his granddaddy byrds funeral.

Outhouse GoKart

June 28th, 2010
1:11 pm

KagMAN confirmations begin.

@@

June 28th, 2010
1:14 pm

Does the presence of a child in the house, where lives, a convicted felon, drug addict, or alcohol abuser matter?

Don’t know, you’d have to ask your leftists that one. It’s they, who are in the habit of advocating for convicts rights, drugs, and alcohol. Children? Not so much.

Paul

June 28th, 2010
1:15 pm

Hello, DDR!

Normal

It’s a nice start….

Doggone/GA

June 28th, 2010
1:15 pm

“I’m kinda interested in hearing how she justified violating the law while at Harvard re: the recruiters issue -”

No justification needed, she never violated the law.

theyeshaveit

June 28th, 2010
1:16 pm

Ah, only in America would a people be proud of their “gun rights”. Only in America can we have a gun lobby, the NRA, that is deemed worthy of an exemption from finance reform. Only in America can we celebrate something like a Second Amendment and the so called wisdom of the Founding Fathers, as if the founding fathers could envision twenty first century America.

Something for the moment:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6nzA5gtBUY