To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions;
To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;
JUSTICE BREYER moves on to make a broad jurisprudential point: He criticizes us for declining to establish a level of scrutiny for evaluating Second Amendment restrictions. He proposes, explicitly at least, none of the traditionally expressed levels (strict scrutiny, intermediate scrutiny, rational basis), but rather a judge-empowering “interestbalancing inquiry” that “asks whether the statute burdens a protected interest in a way or to an extent that is out of proportion to the statute’s salutary effects upon other important governmental interests.” Post, at 10. After an exhaustive discussion of the arguments for and against gun control, JUSTICE BREYER arrives at his interest-balanced answer: because handgun violence is a problem,because the law is limited to an urban area, and because there were somewhat similar restrictions in the founding period (a false proposition that we have already discussed), the interest-balancing inquiry results in the constitutionality of the handgun ban. QED.
We know of no other enumerated constitutional right whose core protection has been subjected to a freestanding “interest-balancing” approach. The very enumeration of the right takes out of the hands of government—even the Third Branch of Government—the power to decide on a case-by-case basis whether the right is really worth insisting upon. A constitutional guarantee subject to future judges’ assessments of its usefulness is no constitutional guarantee at all. Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them, whether or not future legislatures or (yes) even future judges think that scope too broad. We would not apply an “interest-balancing” approach to the prohibition of a peaceful neo-Nazi march through Skokie. See National Socialist Party of America v. Skokie, 432 U. S. 43 (1977) (per curiam). The First Amendment contains the freedom-of-speech guarantee that the people ratified,which included exceptions for obscenity, libel, and disclosure of state secrets, but not for the expression of extremely unpopular and wrong-headed views. The Second Amendment is no different. Like the First, it is the very product of an interest-balancing by the people—which JUSTICE BREYER would now conduct for them anew. And whatever else it leaves to future evaluation, it surely elevates above all other interests the right of law-abiding,responsible citizens to use arms in defense of hearth and home.
Some have made the argument, bordering on the frivolous, that only those arms in existence in the 18th century are protected by the Second Amendment. We do not interpret constitutional rights that way. Just as the First Amendment protects modern forms of communications, e.g., Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union, 521 U. S. 844, 849 (1997), and the Fourth Amendment applies to modern forms of search, e.g., Kyllo v. United States, 533 U. S. 27, 35–36 (2001), the Second Amendment extends, prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms, even those that were not in existence at the time of the founding.
It may be objected that if weapons that are most useful in military service—M-16 rifles and the like—may be banned, then the Second Amendment right is completely detached from the prefatory clause. But as we have said, the conception of the militia at the time of the Second Amendment’s ratification was the body of all citizens capable of military service, who would bring the sorts of lawful weapons that they possessed at home to militia duty. It may well be true today that a militia, to be as effective as militias in the 18th century, would require sophisticated arms that are highly unusual in society at large. Indeed, it may be true that no amount of small arms could be useful against modern-day bombers and tanks. But the fact that modern developments have limited the degree of fit between the prefatory clause and the protected right cannot change our interpretation of the right.
Originally posted by ftman
You're the type of American that I actually respect.
Coming in here and seeing people with machine guns in their avatars defending the 2nd amendment makes me sick to my stomach.
You DON'T need an automatic/semi-automatic weapon for protection. A shotgun with limited rounds (similar to what Australia allows) is enough to protect yourselves. Anything else just provides the mentally ill the resources to go on yet again, another mass shooting spree.edit on 29-12-2012 by ftman because: (no reason given)
Originally posted by Ahabstar
We don't need as many police officers.
We don't need as many lawyers.
We don't need as many judges.
We don't need as many prisons.
We don't need as many taxes to pay for the above.
So we certainly don't need as many politicians nor as many laws.
Lott offers a final damning statistic: “With just one single exception, the attack on congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson in 2011, every public shooting since at least 1950 in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed has taken place where citizens are not allowed to carry guns.”
The police were under no specific legal duty to provide protection to the individual [citizen] appellants.
The duty [of law enforcement is] to provide public services [and] is owed to the public at large, and absent a special relationship between the police and an individual, no specific legal duty exists [to protect any given individual citizen].
...the fundamental principle that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen...
So if the US government passed a law that said it was illegal to own a firearm, with a mandatory penalty of say...no less than 5 years in prison, you think many people would hold on to their guns? I don't.
The 'grandfathered' weapons can NOT be transferred, so they are in effect 'confiscated' already. When the owner dies, the guns are confiscated.
I think a few of you are not understanding the proposed ban that is being circulated now.....at this point they are NOT going to confiscate weapons, I am sure that will be something down the road they will do (hence the registration aspect of the new bill: so they know where all the guns are)
Originally posted by freedomwv
Oh wow! A conversation America has been needing to have for a long time now, i.e. gun control, is grounds to imply civil war? Really?
I will not spout out of the expected liberal talking heads points about gun control because I am not a liberal; I am a Marxist if nothing else.
If anyone wants to start a civil war against the US Federal government, given the current material conditions, you will be crushed by a military which would make you crap your pants. The US military is the most power, not to mention, most advanced military force in the world. You will to have a serious mean streak in you, as well as, some massive funding backing you up to even think about seriously going up against the US military. Only two nation have been able to hand the US military`s butt to them on a silver platter; DPRK and Vietnam. Those two nations could only to that because they really were fighting for their very lives. The fight was brought to them against their will. When America is occupied by the US military, a puppet government installed and your mother is raped daily by the US military, I am sure you will muster the stomach to fight a civil war to the bitter end; and most likely win. So, until all of that happens don`t imply civil war over a long over due cultural conversation about gun control.
I think it is completely reasonable to have a serious talk about what firearms people really need in the United States. I do believe that there are some guns which most people really have no use for in daily life other than to kill a bunch of people really quickly. For example, there is a very good reason why the TAC-9 is not sold nor produced anymore.
I totally understand why people are worried about gun control. I have my doubts sometimes as well. Yet, 2012 has seen some of the worst mass killings I have seen in America for a long time. I don`t have a solid answer for the issue of gun control in America at the time of writing this post. But something has got to change. Be it the laws or society.
I think a few of you are not understanding the proposed ban that is being circulated now.....at this point they are NOT going to confiscate weapons