Yeah! Hooray! Another victory for gun rights took place when the Supreme Court held that the Constitution’s Second Amendment restrains government’s ability to significantly limit “the right to keep and bear arms.” The vote was a 5-4 split – typical these days, especially when it comes to firearms cases.
“Today’s ruling is a victory for freedom and liberty,” said National Shooting Sports Foundation President Stephen L. Sanetti. “All law-abiding Americans, no matter whether they live in a big city like Chicago or in rural Wyoming, have the same Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Constitutional rights don’t stop at state or city borders. Cities like Chicago and New York and states like California must now respect the Second Amendment.”
What Sanetti and others need to add, though, is “This trend could change quickly and flip-flop to 5-4 the other way.” In fact, adding anti-gun Supreme Court justice nominee Elena Kagan keeps the progressive, anti-gun side of the bench in play for many years. Look at the executive branch and where it comes from and that is not a big surprise.
The big surprise will come when a conservative-leaning judge retires and is replaced by another Sotomayor or Kagan. It’ll be 5-4 the other way, and then, we’ll really have our work cut out for us. ~Barbara Baird
Barbara Baird publishes The Women’s Outdoor News, that focuses on news, reviews and stories about women in the outdoors. She is also an NRA-certified pistol instructor. To take an NRA pistol class from Barbara Baird, see www.sheshoots2.com.
Yes, but Bill … how long is the “time being?” Does anyone know? As fragile as life is, who knows if a stalwart conservative like Clarence Thomas or even Judge Alito will live to see another conservative administration? That’s the question this whole thing begs. So, what will we do when our rights get reordered by jurisprudence, instead of by the Constitution?
Good news today for all Second Amendment supporters. Even if Kagan is confirmed, the balance on the Court will remain the same for the time being.
After that, it depends who’s in the White House when a conservative justice leaves the bench. And President Obama should be worried about his reelection prospects.
Barbara, Lacking a crystal ball, I certainly can’t claim to know how long the “time being” is. I’m only celebrating the present victory, and the fact that current political trends, and jurisprudence, in the U.S. seem to favor gun owners. With two Supreme Court decisions in two years (Heller in 2008 and McDonald yesterday), our rights have been “reordered by jurisprudence”–in our favor.
I’m not counseling complacency, but I am hailing the trend, which is more favorable to gun ownership (and less favorable to gun control) than at any time in my adult life. With yesterday’s decision, strict state and local gun laws everywhere (New York, anyone?) are bound to be challenged and seem likely to be overturned.