Friday, June 27, 2008

The Concluding Paragraph of DC v. Heller

I took some time yesterday to read the DC v. Heller decision. It ended up being a very educational explanation of a variety of gun control laws over the last 600 years, as well as an explanation of the right to keep and bear arms over that time. Additionally, it talked about what the word "keep" and "bear" and "arms" means, as well as the grammar of the 2nd Amendment. I agree with this blogger when he stresses the concluding paragraph of the ruling, a paragraph that is included below. Scalia took many opportunities to explain why his colleagues authoring the dissenting opinions were entirely wrong. I appreciate Scalia's statement in the last sentence of that paragraph, which recognizes the limits placed on the Supreme Court. That sentence, may be the most important sentence in the entire brief. - Allan in 60040

“We are aware of the problem of handgun violence in this country, and we take seriously the concerns raised by the many amici who believe that prohibition of handgun ownership is a solution. The Constitution leaves the District of Columbia a variety of tools for combating that problem, including some measures regulating handguns, see supra, at 54–55, and n. 26. But the enshrinement of constitutional rights necessarily takes certan policy choices off the table. These include the absolute prohibition of handguns held and used for self-defense in the home. Undoubtedly some think that the Second Amendment is outmoded in a society where our standing army is the pride of our Nation, where well-trained police forces provide personal security, and where gun violence is a serious problem. That is perhaps debatable, but what is not debatable is that it is not the role of this Court to pronounce the Second Amendment extinct.”

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