Supreme Court (Again) Punts on the Second Amendment, Leaves Voters to Carry the Ball

Court Appeals
Court Appeals
NRA - Institute for Legislative Action
NRA – Institute for Legislative Action

Fairfax, VA -(AmmoLand.com)- On Monday, Dec. 7, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit that upheld a Chicago-area “assault weapons” ban against a Second Amendment challenge.

This was the second time this year that the Supreme Court refused to hear a Second Amendment case, thereby allowing a broad gun control law to stand. As in that previous case, the court’s decision drew a strong rebuke from Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.

The Seventh Circuit case was Friedman v. Highland Park. As our analysis noted, the majority’s reasoning was unusually strained. For example, they suggested that even if the ban's infringement of Second Amendment rights had no beneficial effect on safety whatsoever, it could still be justified by the false sense of security it might impart to local residents.

A dissenting judge wrote, “Both the ordinance and this court’s opinion upholding it are directly at odds with the central holdings of the Supreme Court’s decisions in Heller and McDonald.”

Justice Scalia – author of Heller – chastised his colleagues for refusing to take the case. He was joined in dissent by Justice Clarence Thomas.

“Noncompliance with our Second Amendment precedents,” they argued, “warrants this Court’s attention as much as any of our precedents.”

Scalia elaborated on how the lower courts have ignored the Supreme Court’s prior Second Amendment decisions in upholding bans on highly-popular rifles like the AR-15.

“The question under Heller is not whether citizens have adequate alternatives available for self-defense,” he wrote. “Rather, Heller asks whether the law bans types of firearms commonly used for a lawful purpose—regardless of whether alternatives exist.”

“Roughly five million Americans own AR-style semi automatic rifles,” Scalia explained. Moreover, the “overwhelming majority of citizens who own and use such rifles do so for lawful purposes, including self-defense and target shooting.”

Under our precedents,” he concluded, “that is all that is needed for citizens to have a right under the Second Amendment to keep such weapons.”

For now, the Supreme Court at large has seemingly abdicated its duty to protect Americans’ fundamental Second Amendment rights. Meanwhile, anti-gun politicians like Hillary Clinton are increasingly bold in promoting their prohibitionist agenda.

You don’t have a vote at the Supreme Court, but you will have one in the 2016 presidential election.

Scalia warned that if the views of Highland Park and the Seventh Circuit prevail, “then the Second Amendment guarantees nothing.”

When it comes to your vote for president, it should therefore mean everything.

About the NRA-ILA:

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

For more information, please visit: www.nra.org. Be sure to follow the NRA on Facebook at NRA on Facebook and Twitter @NRA.

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    SuperGrehafnerChicagoGuy Recent comment authors
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    SuperG
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    SuperG

    And another straw gets added to the back of the camel named Revolution.

    rehafner
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    rehafner

    People are getting smarter. Women are arming themselves for protection for themselves and families, Firearms sales have been around a million a month and gun grabbing Democrats are on the verge of being thrown out of office. Citizens are tired of corrupt cops and politicians and are not going to stand for anymore nonsense and infringement of their rights.

    ChicagoGuy
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    ChicagoGuy

    Why did the IL State Rifle Association sue anyway? Richard Pearson & NRA contract lobbyist for IL Donald Todd Vandermyde gave the Chiefs of Police everything they wanted in Rep. Brandon Phelps “NRA backed” HB183 carry bill: criminal penalties for all gun-free zones, an UNLIMITED privacy waiver, & Duty to Inform w/ criminal penalties, so police criminals can execute armed citizens at will. What more could we ask for from traitors? The big brains at ISRA & NRA justified the worst carry bill in America because they got statewide preemption. After IL’s carry bill passed in June 2013, maybe half… Read more »