Fairfax, Va. -- The National Rifle Association of America today praised the U.S. Supreme Court's historic decision in another landmark Second Amendment case. In a 5-4 decision, the Court ruled that the Second Amendment applies not just to Washington, D.C. and other federal enclaves, but protects the rights of all Americans throughout the country. The opinion in McDonald v. City of Chicago brings an end to the nearly 30 year-long handgun ban that the city has imposed on its law-abiding citizens.
“This is a landmark decision,” said NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre. “The Second Amendment -- as every citizen's constitutional right -- is now a real part of American constitutional law. The NRA will work to ensure this constitutional victory is not transformed into a practical defeat by activist judges defiant city councils or cynical politicians who seek to pervert, reverse or nullify the Supreme Court's McDonald decision through Byzantine labyrinths of restrictions and regulations that render the Second Amendment inaccessible, unaffordable or otherwise impossible to experience in a practical, reasonable way.”
As a party to the case, the NRA participated in oral arguments before the Court in March. The NRA persuasively argued that the Second Amendment applies to state and local governments through the Fourteenth Amendment and that handgun bans, like those in the City of Chicago and the Village of Oak Park, are unconstitutional under any standard of judicial review. This same view was shared in friend of the court briefs by a bipartisan group of 309 members of Congress from both chambers, 38 state attorneys general, and hundreds of state legislators. Public opinion polls show that it is also shared by the overwhelming majority of the American people.
“This decision makes absolutely clear that the Second Amendment protects the God-given right of self-defense for all law-abiding Americans, period,” said Chris W. Cox, NRA chief lobbyist. “Ironically, while crime in Chicago runs rampant and lawmakers there call on the National Guard for help, Mayor Daley has insisted on leaving the residents of his city defenseless. Today's opinion puts the law back on the side of the law-abiding. We will be watching closely to make sure that Chicago abides by both the letter and the spirit of the Supreme Court's decision.”
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. Four million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and to advocate enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military.