Government Watch / Keeping America Safe / Politics / We The People

High Court Defends Second Amendment

second amendment

In one of the most important cases in decades, the Supreme Court ruled citizens have a Second Amendment right to carry handguns for self-protection, and no state can strip it.

Citing America’s founding documents and history, the Court shifted the modern presumption back to the citizen, saying states cannot force a citizen to show cause for carrying a firearm, unless consistent with history and the Constitution.

Men and women in many states regularly face life-threatening situations and yet are disallowed from deterring or reacting to those events with a sidearm. That is about to change. They are now going to be able to do so.

The case, New York Rifle and Pistol Assn. v. Bruen, was remanded back to New York for decision consistent with a clear statement of Second Amendment rights. But this case will immediately affect tens of millions in states with laws like New York’s. Among states likely to be affected are California, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, and New Jersey, not to mention states and cities with parallel restrictions.

In Justice Thomas’ cogent, 63-page opinion, the right to “keep and bear arms” is affirmed. New York had said anyone wishing to carry outside the home had to have a “proper cause,” believing self-defense did not count.  Our Founders would have balked at that. So did the Supreme Court’s majority.

Following precedent, the Court set aside a state-based test that tightly restricted Second Amendment rights in favor of a broad understanding of the Amendment’s meaning. Thomas noted, if “the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct,” any permissible regulation must be narrow and consistent with history.

New York – and other states – failed the Thomas injunction, because the right to carry a handgun in public for self-protection (especially today) was exactly what the Second Amendment allowed, hardly outside the original intent of the Bill of Rights.

We do not have one right for home protection and another for protection outside the home. In fact, as Thomas notes, the right to “bear” arms naturally involves carrying arms outside the home.

To assure he was properly grounded, not misunderstood, and that the right was not questioned, Thomas went back through 700 years of law, beginning in the 1200s. 

As an aside, having once sat with the Justice in his chambers, as he spoke about the meaning of “due process,” his historical source waters are crystal clear and run deep on just about everything.  He began that discussion with the Magna Carta (1215 AD).

Thomas also observed, even up to modern times, New York – for most of its history – had no requirement that citizens should require a special need to carry, beyond self-defense.  Accordingly, while a narrow restriction for courthouses and polling places might be allowed, there is “no other constitutional right that an individual may exercise only after demonstrating to government officers some special need.”

Putting a fine point on the freedom intended by the Founders, Thomas described New York’s “argument would in effect exempt cities from the Second Amendment … would eviscerate the general right to publicly carry arms for self-defense.”  Thus, no go.

The effect of this ruling – which expands on DC v. Heller (2008), an incisive Scalia opinion focused on DC law, will likely be greater citizen confidence, security, and comfort in locations formerly dominated by the criminal element, higher deterrence of crime nationwide, and a new preparedness of citizens – individually and collectively – to prevent one-off or mass shooting events, since a responding force will now be available.

In a fascinating twist, the dissent by Breyer, joined by Sotomayor and Kagan, tried to oppose the majority understanding by citing gun violence in America.  Justice Alito then concurred, flaying the dissent’s weak grounding.

Alito noted the dissenters went left, not thinking about the facts or law in question. Alito pointed out that the case “decides nothing about who may lawfully possess a firearm or the requirements that must be met to buy a gun. Nor does it decide anything about the kind of weapons that people may possess.” 

Alito also points out that people want to carry for self-protection precisely because of “the ubiquity of guns and our country’s high level of gun violence …” The more illegal guns, less emphasis on law enforcement, and greater public fear, the more justification for law abiding gun owners to carry for self-protection.

Not surprisingly, the Biden White House slammed the Supreme Court, suggesting– as the President prepared to sign more gun restrictions – that his understanding of the law was deeper, and High Court missed “both commonsense and the Constitution.”

One is left a bit flatfooted here.  Biden barely got through law school, nobbled many brilliant judges when running Judiciary in the Senate, and is not widely viewed – even by his own party – as a sage, crisp, or otherwise cutting-edge wit, let alone legal giant.

Perhaps the best one can say is, as with other recent decisions on education and abortion, thank God wise men and women populate our top court. May it always be so.


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Karen
2 months ago

God is working for us. Hallelujah! Thanks SC.

Gary
2 months ago

One should not have to obtain a permit( with an outragious cost ) this too is unconstutional !

Tom
2 months ago

What is going on? Our founding fathers knew what a threat can arise,foreign or domestic and how to protect the country and its individuals.Hail all Hail the Supreme Courts decision. Active shooters may be seriously reduced.Thank you God for wise men and future protection!

Terry
2 months ago

This may be helpful in our future to know. Thought you might want a copy!

GRAmerican
2 months ago

Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Remember the Founders wanted LIMITED government.
Full time politicians was not their doing.
That is are problem.
Government is supposed to play a SMALL part, but The People have let it run amuck.

BAE
2 months ago
Reply to  GRAmerican

We can only HOPE for limited government. We have lifetime politicians.
They’re just like herpes!

Richard Minetti
2 months ago

Biden doesn’t have an ounce of common sense much less any other sense when it comes to adjudicating a legal issue! Understand he barely made it through law school and probably shouldn’t have been allowed to graduate as I see it!

johnh
2 months ago

Does this mean that states have to allow a person that gets out of prison the right to carry a handgun in public —– as I assume he is a citizen again.??? And also no age limits so can a 10-year old pack a handgun? SCOTUS timing on this issue is not good.

BACKWOODS
2 months ago
Reply to  johnh

Get informed

Lee Srarr
2 months ago
Reply to  johnh

There are restrictions regarding those with felony convictions and some misdemeanor convictions. Remember a charge is different than a conviction.

Brenton
2 months ago
Reply to  johnh

If you are a prohibited possessor, you cannot carry a firearm. It only removed the subjective restrictions that some states were using to deny permits to otherwise qualified applicants. (The most common subjective restriction was to require a “good cause” statement. In New York’s case (and many counties in Ca), the standard of “good cause” was impossible to overcome for 99.99% of all applicants.

GRAmerican
2 months ago
Reply to  johnh

No. The law is for solid citizens. Read the US Constitution. Persons with a past will still be required to prove they have obtained their rights back.

Enuf Said
2 months ago

So Sodomy-Mayer shows her deep hatred for America again–As Gomer Pyle would say–“Surprise–Surprise”>

Patriot Will
2 months ago

Once again, Biden has proven himself to be very confused and incompetent. The patriots need protecting. Those citizens who respect laws are the ones that our leaders should be protecting. The criminals could care less whether policies are legal or illegal. They only care about themselves. It’s the law abiders who need a fair break. Otherwise, it’s open season on the “good guys.”

edward
2 months ago
Reply to  Patriot Will

Politician fall in the criminal group so why would they change?

Phoenix
2 months ago

You were to nice to Biden. He had always been known as an idiot. And was known as the dunce of the senate.

Ken
2 months ago
Reply to  Phoenix

And he still is an idiot and a dunce. #FJB

Willie
2 months ago
Reply to  Phoenix

Where you find that. Like that alot. Dunce of the Senate.

Barb304
2 months ago

If only they would secure our borders and stop the guns that are being constantly smuggled in and sold on the streets!!! As for legally buying handguns that’s a good thing as long as the seller does a background check.

Centurion
2 months ago

The 2nd Amendment is needed to protect the 1st Amendment. If the 2nd ever goes away so does the 1st.

Wanda
2 months ago
Reply to  Centurion

The Second Amendment was not just for self protection or hunting….it was aimed at our being able to take down an usurping government like the one we now have….our forefathers told us we could replace the government with one of our liking and actually it was our duty to do so.

Nobody’s Business
2 months ago
Reply to  Wanda

You are absolutely correct, it needs to be said more and often. Being armed is to protect us from our government. And you are also absolutely correct when you say like the government we have now.That’s why Democrats don’t want history taught in schools. They don’t want anyone to know the real facts of the 2nd amendment.

Sandy
2 months ago

YE

Elizabeth Timm
2 months ago
Reply to  Sandy

Test

Kay
2 months ago

Again a 6 to 3 opinion. When are the liberals justices going to look at the Constitution and not the socialist position. If any one needs to leave the court it is the THREE

Phoenix
2 months ago
Reply to  Kay

How can a judge in the dissent cite no law? This is not the first time they have gone that sotomayor the racist ( a wise latina will always make a better choice than a white man) has done it repeatly.

Have you ever heard kagan and Sotomayor during recorded deliberations

Both are absolute morons compared to the others.

Diversity hires and unfit for the job

anna hubert
2 months ago
Reply to  Phoenix

wise latina is descendant of conquistadores who were racist above and beyond their legacy is disastrous

andrew B. chismar
2 months ago

It is way past time for Real Americans, which are the Majority, to start speaking out against the Lefty, Marxist Agenda and Return Our Country to its greatness! U

Stephen Russell
2 months ago

Hooray Victory indeed awesome X3

Philip Hammersley
2 months ago

THREE wins in a row for true Constitutional law! Reinforcing the 2nd Amendment, throwing out the fake “right” to abortion, and restoring free exercise rights for Coach Kennedy! We MUST get rid of Biden (or his fill-in) in 2024! Otherwise, he’ll taint SCOTUS with another wokester who cannot define “woman.”

J. Farley
2 months ago

The 2nd Amendment is the most straight forward written of our Constitutional rights, it reads —- A well-regulated Militia, necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed. —- The supreme court understands that the phrase, The right of the People is an individual right as it is in the 1st. and 4th Amendments it means you can own them and carry them on or about you person, why else would they add the words bear arms it would make no sense to bear arms only in your home. Our founding Fathers were very smart people they know that not only are there dangers in the world, but also Governments can become repressive and dictatorial, after all they had just liberated a nation, and somehow, I think they could see into the future and see that the Democrats would try to turn America into a Dictatorship.
After reading the 2nd Amendment someone please tell me where the wiggle room is to alter and restrict it. There is none!

johnh
2 months ago
Reply to  J. Farley

Can schools still stop all citizens from packing a handgun into schools or school board meetings. We need a little common sense here.

Dennis Belotti
2 months ago

Amen ! Amen !… Finally SCOTUS showed some wisdom and MOXIE !!! God bless America !

Kevin S
2 months ago

It may say “Chief” on Roberts title, but I consider this to be Alitos Court.

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