Thursday, June 26, 2008

Second Amendment Individual Right to Gun Ownership!

We never thought we'd see this in our lifetimes. The Second Amendment actually determined to be an inalienable right, inseparable from the "individual."

don't tamper... pretty simple...

Dan Abrams says nope, there is no right to own a gun, it is not a constitutional right unless you are a member of the 'militia.' (June 30, 2008 After reading mail critiquing his former comments)

Right Dan. Only the militia men can 'own' a gun. And while we're at it, because women were not originally considered to be in the militia, guess women nowadays can't own a gun if women want to protect themselves from bodily harm or goverment knocking down their doors for whatever purpose all the men-only in government desire...

Guess if the second amendment wasn't one of the original first ten amendments to the Constitution, nobody in the country would be able to possess a gun either, right. Not even for militia purposes...

Guess if none of the first ten amendments had been added to the basic Constitution we wouldn't have any right to free speech, religion, etc. and etc.

We had thought Dan Abrams capable of some understanding of the Constitution. Obviously not.

Uh Dan, the Constitution doesn't give us rights, neither do the Founding Framers who wrote the Constitution, Dan. The Constitution was written not to idenify our rights by enumerating some of them. We possess inherent rights. Period. The Constitution guarantees all rights to us. Period.

Hope you rethink your position per your statement June 30th...

Maybe you'll have Glenn Beck as a guest on your program.

Uh oh. Dan wrote his law review on the second amendment...

ABRAMS: I wrote my law review on the Second Amendment. I promise, we‘ll get to it.

Umm is this Daniel Abrams the same?

What 'Right to Bear Arms'?
Published: July 20, 1989

Looks like it is

An accomplished writer, Abrams has had articles published in, among others: The New York Times, The American Lawyer, and the Yale Law and Policy Review. He also writes a monthly legal column for Men’s Health magazine.

A 1988 alumnus of Duke University, Abrams graduated cum laude with a B.A. in political science. He received his law degree from Columbia University in 1992.

'Verdict with Dan Abrams' for Thursday, June 26

updated 2:16 p.m. ET, Fri., June. 27, 2008

ABRAMS: But those are policy arguments. I want to stick to the constitutional arguments here. And, Professor Kobach, I see you nodding. Let‘s talk about it. Let‘s talk about the Second Amendment, all right? It‘s real simple and I want you to listen very carefully, Professor, to the first few words of the amendment as I read it to you, all right?

And I‘m going to read that part slowly. “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state.” OK, that‘s what the amendment is about. So what are they going to do to achieve that? “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Somehow, the U.S. Supreme Court today completely ignores the part about a well-regulated militia and, instead, they say, oh, it‘s all about the right of the people to keep and bear arms.

KRIS KOBACH, FMR. BUSH JUSTICE DEPT. OFFICIAL: Well, I would disagree. The court spent a good 20 or 30 pages dissecting the meaning of the words “well-regulated militia.” And the definition of a militia, broadly accepted by historians at the time, and this is not coming from the NRA, this is coming from the contemporary documents of the time, is that the militia meant all able-bodied males, it was an armed citizenry.

ABRAMS: Let‘s talk about that. All right. Let‘s talk about that.

KOBACH: So a well-regulated—well, let me just—so a well- regulated militia means, in context, a well-trained and armed body of citizens.

ABRAMS: Right. OK. But let‘s talk about that two ways. First of all, you say a militia, all able-bodied males. At the time that meant people 18 to 45, male and white. So according to—if you‘re going to talk about the original intent, then no African-Americans, no women, no older people have the right to possess a gun.

KOBACH: Sure. And voting was limited to people—and of course, voting at the time was limited to people who were white, male and owned property in most states. But, of course, all of these dimensions changed as we moved forward into the 20th Century.

ABRAMS: Oh, so you mean that things have changed and as result, maybe the framers didn‘t envision possessing weapons in big cities. Is that what you mean?

KOBACH: Look, no, you‘ve got to look at it—you‘re twisting this analogy all out of shape. Property rights also were only enjoyed by a select body of citizens at the time the Constitution was framed. We don‘t, therefore, say that property rights today are only enjoyed by white males.

Similarly, we don‘t say that other rights which were enjoyed only by white males at the time of the framing are only enjoyed by white males today.

ABRAMS: Yes. But the problem is—that‘s part of their problem in referring, Professor Rothstein, only to what a militia meant back at the time, which is one of their strongest arguments. But I don‘t see how they get over the well-regulated part.

I mean, that, to me, suggests that you have to be part of some sort of organized, well-regulated militia and not just say, I live in Washington, D.C., and therefore, I have a right to have a gun...

Net the Truth Online


Supreme Court Strikes Down D.C. Gun Ban; Antiwar Ad Uses Baby

Aired June 26, 2008 - 19:00:00 ET

ALAN GURU, ATTORNEY ...It`s clear that the Second Amendment guarantees individual rights to keep and bear arms, and if that right means anything, it means that you have the right to have a basic, simple handgun inside your own home to defend yourself and your family with.

And we`re very gratified that the Supreme Court today affirmed that right and struck down the D.C. gun ban...

NELSON LUND, PROFESSOR, GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY: I`m not sure why they would let it stand for so long, but for a very long time, all of the lower courts, the lower federal courts accepted the view that this was a kind of collective right that applied only to people who were serving in a government-organized military organization.

And it really is a great day for the Constitution that the court has thoroughly debunked that reading of the Constitution and adopted the position that this is not only an individual right, but that the core of it is the right to individual self-defense.

GRAHAM: You know, I want to hear this, but it`s hard to cheer guys when something that`s written down in the Constitution is barely held up by a 5-4 margin. What happened to 9-zip on this?

I want to read to you Stephen Breyer from his dissent. In my view, there simply is no untouchable constitutional right guaranteed by the Second Amendment to keep loaded handguns in the house in crime-ridden urban areas? Alan, no untouchable constitutional right at all? In other words your guns are at the whim of the government around you? What`s the point of the Constitution?

GURU: Well, the right is not untouchable. If you`re a felon or if you`re crazy, you can lose your gun rights. But -- but what the government can`t touch is law-abiding citizens` guns. If you are a law abiding, adult, responsible person you are allowed to have a gun, and that`s what the government can`t touch. And the Second Amendment guarantees that right against government interference.

GRAHAM: You know, Nelson, I`d love to see the day in America where the court will stand as strongly behind my right to own a gun as written down in the Constitution as they do a right to a partial birth abortion, which came from, what, a penumbra, an emanation?

Why is there so much hostility to something that normal citizens can see? It`s right there in the text. If we don`t like it, we can amend the Constitution any time we want.

LUND: Well, I think too many people, including four members of this court, as you have suggested, have gotten in the habit of thinking that any constitutional provision must mean whatever they think is good policy.

And another important aspect of this case is that -- is that the court rejected the position taken in Justice Breyer`s dissent, according to which just about any restriction on a fundamental constitutional right should be upheld if the judges think that it will promote public safety on the basis of some kind of cost benefit analysis.

GRAHAM: Alan, I`d like to know what kind of local laws now will be re-looked at? If people are watching out there, obviously, there`s a quilt work of patchwork of laws around the country. What kind of laws are most in danger?

GURU: I think Chicago`s handgun ban is going to be looked at. Other laws that impose huge taxes on gun ownership, laws that basically harass the ownership of guns and don`t serve any compelling government purpose are going to get looked at. Laws that make sense, banning criminals from having guns, for example. Those aren`t going to go away any time soon.

GRAHAM: I know that Senator Obama said he supports the Chicago handgun ban as it exists. It`s kind of hard to figure out the line here, Alan. When you were arguing for the Supreme Court, how much did they talk about the actual impact? Because D.C. has the toughest gun law ban, or they did. And they also had one of the highest gun crime rates.

Did that point come up in the conversation with the Supreme Court?

GURU: It came up in conversation with the court. Obviously, the court wants to be comfortable with what they decide. But the policy decision is made in the Constitution. And we know from looking at 32 years of the gun ban in Washington, D.C., that it`s been a complete and total failure. If anything, the gun ban has made things worse.

But even if the gun ban were a good idea, the fact is it`s an unconstitutional idea. And we made these decisions in the Constitution, and we have to respect the Constitution as it`s written...


Landmark Ruling on Individual Gun Rights; North Korea Turns Over Secrets About Nuclear Program; Taking Part in Medical Studies

Aired June 26, 2008 - 11:00 ET

Breaking news from the Supreme Court this morning regarding your right to own a gun. The high court struck down a sweeping handgun ban in the nation's capital in a sharply divided 5-4 ruling. The court said the D.C. handgun ban violates Americans' constitutional right to keep and bear arms. The ban was one of the strictest gun control laws in the country. Today's ruling settles the decades-long debate over whether gun ownership is an individual right...

...As you said, a landmark decision here. The court, by a 5-4 decision, throwing out D.C.'s sweeping ban on handguns.

Justice Scalia was the one who read the decision from the bench. There has been some discussion about whether the Second Amendment applied to militias and the right to bear arms for use in militias, or whether it was individuals. He said unequivocally this has to do with individuals in this case.

However, importantly, he did note that the court did not mean to imply that anybody could have any kind of weapon any place. He said there still were a time and a place for limitations, for instance, on people who might be felons or mental health issues, on certain types of weapons, on carrying weapons into places like federal buildings, that all to be decided down the road by legislatures and we presume by other courts.

There was, however, a dissent read from the bench. This is not done in every case. I'm told maybe three or four times a year. It was Justice John Paul Stevens who delivered it today. He's usually quite a calm, collected and courtly gentleman.

There was a little tension in what he had to say, a little emotion. He felt that the majority was misguided in this case. He said there is no untouchable constitutional right to keep loaded handguns in the house in an urban area.

He said the court was wading into a political thicket here, one that it should stay out of. He said judicial restraint would be far wiser course of action on this issue. He said a true conservative would be siding with him on this case, not with the majority.

That clearly a jab at the conservatives on this court, including Justice Scalia. As to its practical effect, we expect to hear from D.C. officials shortly, but clearly this just throws out the window the D.C. ban on handguns, also a requirement that long guns in the house be disassembled or put -- have a trigger lock on them, that also gone here today.

There are other D.C. laws that may remain in effect. Both sides here trying to draw the positive out of this. Clearly it's a win for the people who supported the individual right to bear arms...

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