Thursday, June 04, 2009

Heller? Fugetaboudit!

The Seventh U.S. Court of Appeals has rejected an appeal by the National Rifle Association and in doing so has confirmed the legality of a Chicago, Illinois, ordnance banning handguns and "automatic weapons" within the Chicago city limits.

This is a curious ... and surprising ... decision for at least three reasons:

  1. Because of the Heller decision, the Federal Government (in the persona of the Supreme Court) has determined that the Second Amendment refers to a "personal right" to possess a firearm.
  2. The 14th Amendment is explicit in stating that "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States ...", which means that if a federal law (or, in this case, interpretation of the Costitution) exists, no state may abrogate that primcipal. In detail, this extends to municipalities, such as the City Of Chicago.
  3. The 7th Circuit Court (west coast) recently ruled in favor of the individual right to possess firearms, which is particularly striking in that this is the most liberal court in the nation by dint of its record.

Not to put it too delicately, if the Feds say you (as a Private Citizen) can do a thing, you can do it in any state in the union. This may be considered by some folks a "Dangerous Thing", as it is the reaso n (for example) that Roe V Wade prevails over States Rights to declare abortion unlegal.

What's good for the Goose is good for the Gander, so the states can't prohibit abortion beyond the liits set by the Federal Government; by the same token, the states cann't prohibit private possession of firearms by the private citizen And yes, this does mean that the individual state or munincipality cannot restrict firearms ownership any more than it can restrict "Pro-Choice" issues.

The Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States:

Section 1.
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

No comments: