The federal Supremes may review the constitutionality of the U.S. Constitution in their next session … or at least part of it.
In perhaps one of the most paradoxical questions before the Supreme Court in a long time, by Tuesday the highest judicial body in the nation will decide whether to review a case that is basically being referred to as “Levy vs. the District of Columbia.” Produced and brought forward by libertarian Cato Institute senior fellow Robert Levy, the case seeks to test the constitutionality of the anti-firearm regulations in force in the District of Columbia, the nation’s strictest anti-handgun laws.
Last March, the US Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Second Amendment, which states, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” While gun ownership groups argue that the important modifier there is the right of the “people” – which would classify gun ownership as an individual right, is the cornerstone phrase, gun ownership opponents argue that the key phrases are “A well regulated Militia” and “the security of a free State,” which could be argued toward in interpretation that diminishes the individual gun ownership right, but merely allows for gun ownership in connection with some form of military or state service.
WonderfulPessimist.com is of the intellectual opinion that only oligarchies, dictatorships and other forms of tyrannical government seek to deny the common folk gun ownership, because they fear uprisings and rebellions against their rule. Just and moral governments never need to fear that and therefore allow private ownership of guns, whether it be for hunting, home protection or defending oneself against tyranny. WonderfulPessimist.com also recommends the 1980s movie Red Dawn as required viewing before entering into any discussion on this issue.
That being said, I’ve never really owned a gun. And other than the antique World War II German Luger my father acquired while serving in Germany, which I would like to keep as a remembrance of him and pass down to my kids when the time comes (once I have kids), I have no personal interest in owning a gun.
But I tell you what: I feel a lot safer living in a country where I know I could own one if I chose to, than I’d feel living in a country where I couldn’t, no matter how much it might be needed. After all, what the jet-set liberals who want to pretend the Second Amendment doesn’t exist don’t realize is that life is not always condo hotels and caviar: some folks do live in dangerous areas, and cops are a reactive, not a proactive, force. If I lived in an area where I knew a rapist was at large, for example, I wouldn’t want to be without any way to protect my wife if the fellow tried breaking in to our apartment.
Then again, I’m not exactly planning on going out and buying one any time in the foreseeable future, either. But at least I have the choice. The best thing the Supreme Court could do is to pass on this case and, by so doing, uphold the lower court decision that the DC anti-gun laws are too broad and therefore unconstitutional. While anti-gun advocates would see this as a defeat, it doesn’t give pro-gun forces all they want, either. Sounds like a decent balance.