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U.S. Supreme Court Takes Up Gun-Rights Case

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posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 05:53 PM

U.S. Supreme Court Takes Up Gun-Rights Case

It's the first time since 1939 that the justices will confront the Constitution's right to bear arms.

Analysts are calling it political dynamite.

The potential landmark case is the first time since 1939 that the Supreme Court will confront whether the Second Amendment protects an individual's right of gun ownership or merely a collective right to keep and bear arms while serving in a state militia.

The answer is important because it could set the ground rules for gun-control laws across the country. If the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, it will limit government efforts to restrict the prevalence of guns among law-abiding citizens. Gun-control efforts would have to be reasonably related to a government interest, and entire categories of firearms – like handguns – could not be banned.
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 20-11-2007 by Realtruth]

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 05:53 PM
This is going to start a massive fire on both sides. I don't even know how to comment on this one folks, but it sure will be interesting to see what transpires.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 05:56 PM
Well no matter what these nut heads desides is the correct 'interpretation' of the constitution and the 2nd amendment they won't be getting me to voluntarily turn in my fire arms

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 06:18 PM
Ya know, I have thought about this a lot and I think the SC will somehow rule to keep things as they are. Also because this is dealing with D.C..


posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 06:22 PM

Heres the ABC news story on it.
i am of two minds on this case,(one mind on the 2nd, it is the law and should be).

thought 1) if all the WNO folks on here are correct than i guess the court will rule against the 2nd? if you plan to take over the world you would want all the guns gone from the populace. and this is the first time in 70 years the court has looked at the 2nd.
thought 2) the court right now it 5 to 4 right leaning more or less conservative so this should be a no brainer 5 to 4 in favor of the 2nd amendment.
will be interested in the result and how wide or how narrow any decision is in this case.

should be interesting thread to see how the posters go on this thread.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 06:40 PM
I think the Wikipedia article on the Second Amendment is required reading for anyone who cares about this subject. My conclusion after reading the history of the amendment is "I have not freaking clue about how it should be interpreted." I'm excited to experience this, because it will be one of the first cold interpretations of a right in the Constitution in some time.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 06:45 PM
This is new to me!!!!!!!!!!!!! I had not idea that the people in DC have their second amendment taken away

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 06:49 PM
I would be willing to bet the odds makers in the insurance industry would want a pretty long waiting period for a new policy on Judge Anthony Kennedy. He's the "swing vote" on many issues that are tied 4 to 4.

And he is fairly unpredictable. Both sides worry about him.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:03 PM
NGC2736, point taken he is the loose cannon at this time but he is supposed to be more to the right,so should be interesting,as somone posted here first cold inter.of the consitution in awhile.

maybe one of the justices will bring the "foreign laws" theory this time as well?

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:07 PM
reply to post by marg6043

DC's law:

District of columbia
(As of May, 2002)

Rifles and Shotguns Handguns
Permit to Purchase Yes Yes*
Registration of Firearms Yes Yes
Licensing of Owners Yes Yes
Permit to Carry Yes Yes
*Not available.

NOTE: The District of Columbia has two sets of laws
applicable to firearms. One, passed by Congress, is part of
the D.C. Code (2001 ed. §§ 22-4501 et seq.) and regulates
the purchase, possession and carrying of firearms. A newer
law, passed in 1976 by the D.C. City Council requires all
firearms to be registered, all owners to be licensed, and
prohibits the sale of new handguns. It also prohibits anyone
from bringing a handgun into the District or transporting
a handgun through the city (D.C. Code 2001 ed. §§ 7-
2501.01 et seq.). (PDF document)

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:08 PM
reply to post by robert204

I really don't see the views of Roger Alford coming into play here, but who knows. I've pretty much given up trying to second guess what will take place.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:10 PM
This will come down to interpretation.

1. Who fits the definition of a "Well organized militia" today?

2. Is such a militia "necessary to the security of a free state" today?

3. Does today's militia have arms? If they do does it fit this: "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms"?

So now that this is said think about this since I understand this in a few ways.

The answer to #1 would be the National Guard. They are a "well organized militia". I know they weren't around when this was written, but do they fit the definition today? If not, who would?

Answer to #2, yes and no. This one isn't easy since taking away this organized militia goes against the Constitution, but are they needed to protect the states today?

Yes they are since federal military personnel are not allowed to do the work they do on US land. I know that the Guard can deploy and come under active duty commanders, and I know the active duty people can be sent in to support the Guard in CONUS, so is this causing more of a problem by blending the difference in the missions of each organization?

#3 Is easy if you think the Guard is the "well organized militia" of today since they have arms. If you don't think that they are the "well organized militia" post who you think is so we can discuss another organization that should take on this role.

So you have some ideas from me. So who is today's "well organized militia"? I say it is the Guard people. I don't like how they get activated and used as active duty troops since that wouldn't be the way I use them. They should be used in CONUS period. If you want to go overseas go active, otherwise stay Guard.

If you get rid of the Guard who will become the "well organized militia"?

Who makes up these "well organized militias" today? This is where things get interesting. Normal citizens make up the Guard so they should be able to have arms as it says in the Constitution. So does this mean that only the folks in the "well organzied militia" should have this right?

I say yes since they are here to protect the state. I know many citizens want to "keep and bear arms", but this is where interpreting the Constitution gets interesting. People who make up the "well organzied militia" are needed to protect the state. That doesn't include everyone in the state.

Back when the Constitution was written there wasn't any National Guard so this makes sense when you have to deal with the way things were back then. If you look at it this way then this should be a no brainer.

I think that we have been off track for many years since we do have "well organzied militias" in every state, terriroty, and in DC. The Guard takes on this role. Tell me if any other person fits this definition, that is if you agree that the Guard is the best and only definition of a "well organized militia" today.

So what do you people think? This may seem simple to me but I know that the non-Guard gun owners think they are part of a "well organzied militia". We must define what a "well organized militia" is and when that happens there will be no choice since we'll know who the militia is today. This leads to more questions such as active duty folks gun ownership, but that is for another thread.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:11 PM
Gun owners will be so screwed. just a side bet.

Only spring time will tell.


posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:16 PM
reply to post by NJ Mooch

I am an avid "right to bear arms" supporter. But the way you just broke it down, really makes one think. I actually have never really sat down and thought about what "the right to bear arms" really means.


Good post - star!

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:23 PM
This ruling could effect many states, if ruled its a right of the people as the founders have told us, then the states can't trump it meaning they can no longer INFRINGE our rights..

The state has the power to create laws, regulations ect, regarding the issues within the respective state so long as those laws, regulations, ect don't go against the constitution..

the Second amendments meaning is clear in and of itself regardless of what the anti gun crowd spews in efforts to strip free men of their liberty, however it becomes even clearer when you read its purpose by the men who actually wrote it...

I have no doubt that if the Supreme Court is just and is not corrupt by the elites, then they will rule in favor of the people, those anti gun entities in d.c and the Brady bunch are foolish for pushing to get this into the higher courts, because the Supreme Court will most surely look into the federalist papers and other related documents showing the intent of the second amendment and who the founders said applies when interpreting this.

"Americans have the right and advantage of being armed - unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms."

James Madison, The Federalist Papers.

"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed."

Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers at 184-188.

"Men trained in arms from their infancy, and animated by the love of liberty, will afford neither a cheap or easy conquest."

From the Declaration of the Continental Congress, July 1775.

The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them."

Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story of the John Marshall Court.

"Militias, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves and include all men capable of bearing arms. [...] To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."

Senator Richard Henry Lee, 1788, on "militia" in the 2nd Amendment.

"Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defence? Where is the difference between having our arms in our own possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defence be the *real* object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?"

Patrick Henry, speech of June 9 1788.

"To disarm the people... was the best and most effectual way to enslave them."

George Mason, speech of June 14, 1788.

"The great object is, that every man be armed. [...] Every one who is able may have a gun."

Patrick Henry, speech of June 14 1788.

"That the said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United states who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms..."

Samuel Adams, in "Phila. Independent Gazetteer", August 20, 1789.

"In the absence of any evidence tending to show that possession or use of a 'shotgun having a barrel of less than eighteen inches in length' at this time has some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia, we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear such an instrument. [...] The Militia comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense."

Majority Supreme Court opinion in "U.S. vs. Miller" (1939),

"I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials."

George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Convention on Ratification of the Constitution, Elliot, Vol. 3, June 16, 1788.

"Whereas civil-rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as military forces, which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms."
Tench Coxe, in Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution.

"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed."
Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers at 184-188.

"That the said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms ... "
Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, at 86-87 (Pierce & Hale, eds., Boston, 1850).

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States. A military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive."
Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution (Philadelphia 1787).

"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American...[T]he unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people."
Tenche Coxe, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

"Whereas, to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them; nor does it follow from this, that all promiscuously must go into actual service on every occasion. The mind that aims at a select militia, must be influenced by a truly anti-republican principle; and when we see many men disposed to practice upon it, whenever they can prevail, no wonder true republicans are for carefully guarding against it."
Richard Henry Lee, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

"What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms."
Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, 1787. ME 6:373, Papers 12:356.

"What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty .... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins."
Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment, I Annals of Congress at 750, August 17, 1789.

"The right of the people to keep and bear ... arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country ..."
James Madison, I Annals of Congress 434, June 8, 1789.

" ... but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, while there is a large body of citizens, little if at all inferior to them in discipline and use of arms, who stand ready to defend their rights ..."
Alexander Hamilton speaking of standing armies in Federalist 29.

[edit on 20-11-2007 by C0le]

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:24 PM
reply to post by NJ Mooch

I doubt that we will get a reasonable response from the courts on this, considering past track record. But, the implication, since this amendment predates the Guard Forces as we know them, should be clear. The militia was to be called from the common citizens of the state.

The militia was never, at that time, imagined as registered group or formal organization, but as the pool from which the states could draw talent for needs in time of distress.

As to "well regulated", the common sense approach to this phrase is that these were to be people, because there had never been a ban on the right to bear arms, such as there was in England, who had in their possession the firearms needed to defend the Constitution and the local rights of states. In this sense "regulated" should be taken as normal, or average citizen.

Now, I seriously doubt that anyone will take a historical viewpoint, so I cannot think that such points as original meaning will have much bearing on this case.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:35 PM
I am of the feeling that this may well come down to the court thinking of the here and now and not the consitution they are supposed to protect,in which case a very wide interpolation against the 2nd may be the result.

in which case i guess i have to say "praise the lord and pass the ammo", and "from my cold dead hands"


posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:48 PM
reply to post by C0le

If there were still WATS...

It's times like these that I'm glad I live in what was a Confederate state. Missouri recently completely repealed the requirement to obtain a permit to purchase even a handgun. Here, we now have a law explicitly prohibiting the Government from confiscating our weapons in times of emergency. And yes, even a toddler can own a rifle.

If the Court rules in favor of the enemies to freedom, I think that whole secession thing might be worth another look.

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:53 PM
Isn't it interesting that things which were so clearly understood for hundreds of years have some scratching their heads and wandering? The brain washing is definitely having an effect. Just get on the bus, we're taking you to a 'Freedom Camp' Yippeeee......

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 07:55 PM
Unfortunately this could be the case, the status quo is wrong as it goes against the constitution, but they may in fact rule in favor of the status quo.... thus imho, making the court illegitment.

Ive said it on various boards and now this one, though a ruling in favor of the people would be preferred, the ruling by the court in either direction is of little importance or meaning to me, I'm a free man ruled by no man, no majority, and no government, i mind my own business and never try to force my own personal views on things on others through law, its wrong and un American.

What some one does, owns, says, or believes, is their business and their business alone, Its ok to disagree we don't have to like any of it, but unless they are violating your individual rights, leave them the hell alone..

I know what my rights as a free man are, they are simple, be free and don't violate the liberties and freedoms of another, its really that simple.

The ruling if it goes south, will be the final line the sand, Those who are true patriots will stand, Those who believe free men should be free, will say enough, and that will be the day when the people once again prove that the spirit of resistance still lives.

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