Aug 26, 2009

Guns, Guns, Guns

SCOTUSBlog is reporting that the Supremes may opt to hear appeals regarding the Seventh Circuit's holding that DC v. Heller should not be incorporated. For those of you who have no idea what that means, here you go: the Supreme Court is deciding whether to hear a case arguing that limits on gun control laws apply only to the federal government or to state and local governments as well. The Seventh Circuit said it only applies to the Feds. The NRA disagrees.

Here is an article at Reason magazine arguing why the Supremes should overturn the decision in NRA v. Chicago. I pretty much agree. Only a few rights have not been incorporated (including the right to be indicted by a grand jury, the quartering of soldiers anywhere other than within the Second Circuit (good luck with that one), right to civil jury trials, and the right to not be subject to excessive bails and fines). In general, I don't particularly like the incorporation process since I prefer federalism over than centralization. I also don't believe that the 14th Amendment gives the Court a carte blanche to destroy the prerogatives of the individual states, as the jurisprudence stands today.

However, I'm on the losing side of this argument, so, if we are going to incorporate pretty much the entire Bill of Rights, we shouldn't treat the Second Amendment as some special case. If it is a right, it is a right that shouldn't be infringed upon by the states or local governments, period. That may anger gun control opponents, but I'm not going to let my personal policy preferences (for one, I don't know any reason why a private citizen would or should ever need an assault rifle, though I'm open to arguments) alter my constitutional interpretation.

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