Yes, here we go again
Saturday, June 2, 2018
Maybe statements requiring correction are requisite to Tinsley E. Yarbrough’s letters? It doesn’t seem a recent one falls outside of this class. From the latest, “… the Supreme Court and lower courts have consistently upheld firearm restrictions, including controls over semi-automatics.”
While true for lower courts, the Supreme Court has not upheld any law restricting the right of Americans to bear arms of any type (if anything it has broadened what can be carried by recently throwing-out Massachusetts’ Taser ban). As I clarified previously, not taking a case is different from upholding a decision. The issue is “ripening.” My guess is ripening will be complete shortly after the next justice is appointed.
But some progress has been made in that existence of the preamble to the Bill of Rights is now acknowledged (although there is an odd suggestion that the preamble somehow became irrelevant as soon as the legislation it explained was finally adopted — as if we should expect preambles to be ratified). And of course the point of raising the issue of the preamble to begin with — that it indicates the second amendment was not intended to grant government a right — has gone ignored.
And now we have criticism of NRA for displaying the operative clause of the second amendment. The relationship between the operative and prefatory clauses is carefully explained in the Heller decision. Those of us who have read that decision understand why displaying the prefatory clause would make no sense.
None of this hand-wringing changes the fact that attempts to interpret the right to bear arms as a collective one has failed — and officially so. It is a right every individual has, and for good reason. As we see too often, places where this right is violated are dangerous.