Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

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

Friday, December 11, 2015

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

On Monday, 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. “[N]oncompliance 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 semiautomatic 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.

TRENDING NOW
The Washington Post Gives Gun Control Group and U.S. Senator Three Pinocchios on Suppressors

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

The Washington Post Gives Gun Control Group and U.S. Senator Three Pinocchios on Suppressors

Last week, we wrote about Americans for Responsible Solutions’ irresponsible misinformation about The Hearing Protection Act on Twitter.  Apparently, we weren’t the only ones who took notice of ARS’s complete disregard for the facts on ...

Seattle Gun Tax Fails to Generate Projected Revenue, Succeeds in Burdening Rights

News  

Gun Laws  

Friday, March 24, 2017

Seattle Gun Tax Fails to Generate Projected Revenue, Succeeds in Burdening Rights

On March 16, 2017, the Seattle Times reported that Seattle city officials were reluctant to release data on the revenue generated by the city’s firearms and ammunition tax, citing taxpayer confidentiality concerns. Less than a ...

Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Embraces Heller and Originalism During Senate Hearings

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Embraces Heller and Originalism During Senate Hearings

Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, President Trump’s pick to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the U.S. Supreme court, asserted during his confirmation hearings this week that Scalia’s landmark Second Amendment opinion in District of ...

Wisconsin: Important Right to Carry Bill Introduced

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Wisconsin: Important Right to Carry Bill Introduced

Today, LRB 2039/1 was introduced to the Wisconsin State Legislature.  This Right to Carry bill would allow for the concealed carry of a firearm without a concealed carry license anywhere in the state where an ...

More Firearms, More Firearms Owners, Fewer Fatal Accidents

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

More Firearms, More Firearms Owners, Fewer Fatal Accidents

The National Safety Council released the 2017 edition of its annual Injury Facts report this week, and it contains welcome news about firearm safety. 

Virginia Action Needed: Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Self-Defense Bills

Monday, March 27, 2017

Virginia Action Needed: Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Self-Defense Bills

Following their passage in the Virginia General Assembly, Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed multiple self-defense bills; Senate Bill 1299, Senate Bill 1300, House Bill 1852, and House Bill 1853. 

News  

Monday, March 27, 2017

NRA Applauds Texas State Senate for Passing SB 16

The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action applauds the Texas Senate today for passing Senate Bill 16, legislation that substantially reduces License To Carry fees in the Lone Star state.

Oklahoma: Multiple Pro-Gun Bills Passed Out of the House

Friday, March 24, 2017

Oklahoma: Multiple Pro-Gun Bills Passed Out of the House

This week, the Oklahoma House of Representatives passed multiple pro-gun bills, including House Bill 1721, House Bill 2323, and House Bill 2322. 

Illinois: Gun Seizure Bill Could be Heard by House at Any Time

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Illinois: Gun Seizure Bill Could be Heard by House at Any Time

The Illinois House of Representatives could consider House Bill 2354 at any time.

Continuing to Fight in California

Friday, March 24, 2017

Continuing to Fight in California

We are excited to inform you of our new California specific webpage – Stand and Fight California.   On this page you will find State Legislation, Legal Updates, and How to Get Involved, among other California ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
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.