Skip to comments.Justices to release audio in guns case (D.C. v. Heller)
Posted on 03/04/2008 6:53:13 PM PST by neverdem
The Supreme Court said Tuesday it will quickly release audio tapes after the March 18 argument over gun rights. The case from the District of Columbia could resolve whether the Constitution gives individuals the right to own guns and, if so, whether the government may still strictly regulate gun ownership, including a ban on handguns.
The immediate, same-day release of audio tapes following arguments in major cases started in the 2000 presidential election, when the justices decided appeals of the Florida recount controversy in favor of George W. Bush.
The court has twice this term provided same-day audio. It was made available in cases involving the rights of prisoners detained by the U.S. military at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and the method of execution by lethal injection.
The court records arguments and ordinarily releases them at the end of each term. With television cameras barred from the court and reporters prohibited from using tape recorders in the courtroom, the availability of audio provides the public with a chance to hear the justices at work.
The case is District of Columbia v. Heller, 07-290.
“But you must realize, it ought to be 9 to 0 to uphold what is clearly declared in the Constitution”
Agreed a 100% I find it sickening that it has come to this. How such a clear cut statement could be tortured into meaning something else is simply wrong.
Did you forget to take your meds today?
Some few of them are that aware; possibly a majority, but I'm not optimistic.
Perhaps one or two even recognize the possibility of civil unrest if their interpretation of the Constitution were to be too "creative."
Even if 99% of firearms owners do as you project, that still leaves roughly a million who will form an uncrackably hard nut of resistance.
According to John Ross, the IRA never had more than about 200 members, but they kept Northern Ireland in chaos for several decades.
Oral arguments are on one day, taking I believe an hour or less to hear from both sides, plus maybe a very few minutes for a amicus ("friend") brief on one side only - the Attorney General of Texas was denied the opportunity to oppose the Bush administration on this! - followed by a long period during which they either deliberate or take long naps.
“The decision will come back as a 5 to 4 (Kennedy will uphold citizens rights, with Alito, Thomas, Roberts & Scalia).”
What odds you laying on that?
I have a couple friends who could each arm that many folks - and they'd be well-armed!
“If the court affirms a meaningful individual right, it will be a major legacy of the Bush administration.”
You must be putting sarcasm out there without the tag again. WTF did Bush have to do with this? I’m pretty sure his admin weighed in AGAINST the individual RTKBA.
The Wall Street Journal published an editorial by Lawrence Tribe, the legal scholar, who essentially admitted the 2nd amendment refers to an individual’s right but that the Supreme Court should now enable the limits to which that right can extend. His argument seems to be that the limitations should be so great that the individual’s right to arms would be extremely small. So small, that handguns would not be allowed and the DC’s infringements would be reasonable.
This argument can not be squared with the individual’s basic right to self defense and to arms. The militia clause would be rendered meaningless if any arm suitable to militia use (contemporary service grade arms including handguns and others) were ok to ban. In the DC case, the issue was self-defense with handguns. In other words, the anti-arms crowd wants a meaningless 2nd amendment—you can have arms but only the very few that government allows you and only then if you own them according to the strict rules government applies, directly conflicint with the amendment (”shall not be infringed”). The enemies of individuals’ freedoms must stay up late seeking creative arguments to keep people bound.
In the 1800’s there were restrictions on concealed carry. Few noticed or complained. Further restrictions were placed on guns to keep them out of the hands of “those people” (blacks, Jews, anyone different and with too little voice to defend their rights; just like the old 1680s English law barring Catholics from having pistols). Too few complained. Then in the 1930s, during the wave of gangster movies, a large array of arms were tightly constrained by applying a tax no one could then afford. Only gangsters used sawed-off shotguns or machine guns, or so it seemed to many, so few complained. In the 1960s, political assassinations led to further restrictions, but not on the guns used in the assassinations. Few would complain, else they would seem insensitive to the tragic deaths of the times.
In the 1990s, political speak would be applied to a number of arms and “assault weapons” and “high capacity magazines” would be born and banned. The concept that the Constitution didn’t acknowledge people’s rights but rather acknowledged the government’s rights was openly touted but was so brazen and obviously corrupt it would prove insufficient to fully complete the process of erasing an American’s right to arms. Now, a few more people were complaining, a larger number of people were becoming aware of a vanishing right.
Now, the new attack on individual’s rights is about how much of a right the individual should be allowed. However, the phrase “shall not be infringed” stands in the way. Will the Supreme Court recognize this new attack for what it is? Many see the allowance of this right to be too risky and fear other Americans will be dangerous if allowed this degree of freedom. They think of deranged individuals and evil people and they recoil from the idea that people might have access to arms. But that puts the people’s rights at risk from the actions of insane and evil people. Is that the point of erasing our freedom? Others want the right to extend only to hunting. But, the 2nd amendment was never about hunting, it was about power in the hands of the individual. The Constitution and the philosophy of American government was much about limiting the power of government and much about protecting the power of the individual. That goes to the core of what it means to be an American and over 200 years of American freedom shows what the power of the individual can achieve. Yes, there are risks and there is uncertainty. Are those risks worth erasing every trace of the individual’s right to decide how to defend himself? The Supreme Court is reflecting on a case that touches on nothing short of that. This is a very important moment in American history.
The court said yesterday it will limit its ruling to one question: whether D.C. laws "violate the Second Amendment rights of individuals who are not affiliated with any state-regulated militia, but who wish to keep handguns and other firearms for private use in their homes."
Souter and Kennedy join the four conservatives in Jan's opinion.
The brief of the Solicitor General basically says it is an individual right, but asked for a lower level of scrutiny than the strict scrutiny typically given to enumerated rights, not to mention a right to abortion which wasn't in the Constitution. It's a question of how they can infringe on an individual right. BTW, the Solicitor General wants the Supreme Court to remand it to a lower court.
Bing, bing, bing! Exactly correct.
The brief from Solicitor General said it probably recognizes an individual right, but they were worried about laws that infringe on machinegun restrictions, 1986 FOPA, and the banning of felons, 1968 GCA, IIRC. It recommended remanding it to a lower court, and not using the strict scrutiny normally applied to enumerated rights.
My fearless prediction:
The SCOTUS rules the 2A is an individual right, but the government can regulate it in some cases ala “shouting fire in a theater”. They will close that this ruling applies only to DC.
The Constitution doesn't give or create rights. It protects them. As to the second part of the question, what part of shall not be "infringed" is so hard to understand?
No, they are hearing oral arguments for a portion of a single day. It'll be a couple of months, at least, before they release a decision.
Same here in Southern Ohio!
A popular Bumper sticker around here is: "The Government can have my guns, when I run out of ammo!"
They could, but they'd have to rule that the right was not a fundamental one, essential to ordered liberty. But if they do that, they would also be likely to allow some or all of the DC restrictions.
Well not quite, according to the site of Heller's attorney, the Texas AG will take 10 minutes out of the Respondent's (Heller's) allotment of 30 minutes. The US SG will get his own short time.
Now you're right that's hardly fair, but both DC and Heller have agreed to it.
Of course not!!! The current POTUS has had nothing at all to do with appointing conservative judges to the SCOTUS.
Supreme Court decision to uphold the individual's right to own a firearm=Not Bush's Fault!