Well, they did it... DC Asks SCOTUS to take Parker

This is a discussion on Well, they did it... DC Asks SCOTUS to take Parker within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...74.html?sub=AR By Robert Barnes and David Nakamura Washington Post Staff Writers Tuesday, September 4, 2007; 12:12 PM The District today asked the Supreme Court to ...

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Thread: Well, they did it... DC Asks SCOTUS to take Parker

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    Distinguished Member Array Bob The Great's Avatar
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    Well, they did it... DC Asks SCOTUS to take Parker

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...74.html?sub=AR


    By Robert Barnes and David Nakamura
    Washington Post Staff Writers
    Tuesday, September 4, 2007; 12:12 PM

    The District today asked the Supreme Court to uphold the city's ban on private ownership of handguns, saying the appeals court decision that overturned the law "drastically departs from the mainstream of American jurisprudence."

    Most legal experts believe the court will accept the case, which could lead to a historic decision next year on whether the ambiguously worded Second Amendment to the Constitution protects private gun ownership or only imparts a civic right related to maintaining state militias.

    The District argues in its petition for review that its law--one of the toughest handgun bans in the nation--should be upheld regardless of whether the court sides with the so-called "individualist" or "collective" legal theories.

    "It is eminently reasonable to permit private ownership of other types of weapons, including shotguns and rifles, but ban the easily concealed and uniquely dangerous modern handgun," states the petition, filed by District Attorney General Linda Singer. It adds: "Whatever right the Second Amendment guarantees, it does not require the District to stand by while its citizens die."

    "We're going to fight to uphold a law that . . . has public support," Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) said at a news conference outside D.C. police headquarters. "The only possible outcome of more handguns in the home is more violence. Our appeal will help the District of Columbia be able to continue to reduce gun violence."

    A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit split 2-1 last March in throwing out the District's law, which prohibits handgun ownership except by active and retired law enforcement officers. It also struck down a law requiring that rifles and shotguns kept in private homes be unloaded and disassembled or bound by trigger locks.

    The court ruled that the Second Amendment "protects an individual right to keep and bear arms" and that "once it is determined--as we have done--that handguns are 'Arms' referred to in the Second Amendment, it is not open to the District to ban them."

    The appeals court acknowledged that its decision was groundbreaking; only one other appeals court--the Fifth Circuit based in New Orleans--has recognized an individual's right to gun ownership, and it nevertheless upheld the federal gun-control law at issue. Nine other circuits around the country have endorsed the "collective" right.

    That split is what makes it likely the justices will accept the case, and the lawyers who brought the case on behalf of six District residents who wanted to overturn the gun ban also want the court to take the case.

    "We support the court granting [review] and plan on responding very quickly," said attorney Alan Gura, one of the lawyers who brought the case.

    Singer said the city expects to hear by November whether the high court will hear the case. The District would be represented in court arguments by Alan B. Morrison, special counsel to Singer's office.

    "This is more than an intellectual or ideological argument. It's real," Singer said. "For the residents of the District of Columbia, it's a matter of life and death."

    The Supreme Court has not specifically addressed the gun rights guarantees of the Second Amendment since 1939, when it upheld a federal gun control law and seemed to side with the "collective" right argument.

    The Second Amendment provides: "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."

    The appeals court's decision to focus on "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed"rather than "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State'' reflects a growing trend in the legal and academic community.

    So while the District argues in its petition that the appeals court decision ignored the "obvious military character" of the Second Amendment's language, it spends more time making the case that its law should be upheld even if a majority of the justices embrace the individual rights theory.

    Its legal filing contends that the Second Amendment was meant to protect the states from federal intervention, not to restrict their legislative decisions. "States remain free to regulate arms within their boundaries so long as they do not thereby deprive the United States of the ability to obtain the assistance of an armed citizenry in time of need," the petition states.

    And the petition says the high court should recognize that banning handguns, which it calls the criminal's "weapon of choice," was a reasonable response in an urban area marked by high crime rates.

    District lawyers argue that the ability to own shotguns and rifles satisfied the desire of the law's challengers for a means of self-protection. The appeals court found that argument "frivolous."

    The petition also includes a long list of statistics it says bolsters its claims that the availability of handguns increases the number of suicides and endangers children and police officers. "No other provision of the Bill of Rights even arguably requires a government to tolerate serious physical harm on anything like the scale of the devastation worked by handguns," it states.

    Although the case decided by the appeals court was called Parker v. District of Columbia, District lawyers have filed their petition as District of Columbia v. Dick Anthony Heller. That is because the appeals court found that Heller, a security guard, was the only one of the six plaintiffs who had legal standing to challenge the law. His application for a handgun permit was denied by the government.
    Now we wait till November...

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    VIP Member Array packinnova's Avatar
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    It's going to be a long wait too! It's going to be both exciting and scary at the same time.
    "My God David, We're a Civilized society."

    "Sure, As long as the machines are workin' and you can call 911. But you take those things away, you throw people in the dark, and you scare the crap out of them; no more rules...You'll see how primitive they can get."
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    What a Year!

    Quote Originally Posted by packinnova View Post
    It's going to be a long wait too! It's going to be both exciting and scary at the same time.
    Ditto! Anytime an issue "Near and Dear" is in the Courts, it is scary.......

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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    Scary friends, scary.

    On one hand, I just cannot see how we can lose given the current composition of the Supremes.

    OTOH, (and I do this for a freaking living, friends) you just never know.

    There is a chance they'll refuse to hear it.

    But I doubt it.

    Very, very high stakes here, for all of us.
    "...bad decisions that turn out well often make heroes."


    Gary D. Mitchell, A Sniper's Journey: The Truth About the Man and the Rifle, P. 103, NAL Caliber books, 2006, 1st Ed.

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    "We're going to fight to uphold a law that . . . has public support," Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) said at a news conference outside D.C. police headquarters. "The only possible outcome of more handguns in the home is more violence. Our appeal will help the District of Columbia be able to continue to reduce gun violence."

    ************************

    Doesn't DC have one of highest murder rates currently? Isn't the gun ban currently in place?

    Ah well, who am I to think of these things?

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    I want to remain confident in a positive outcome...this perhaps is the time for the the high court to finally make a decision...I would rather have it made now, than in 2009?...or after Hillary has a chance to put Ted and Chucky into the next open slots...
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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    Distinguished Member Array Bob The Great's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    I want to remain confident in a positive outcome...this perhaps is the time for the the high court to finally make a decision...I would rather have it made now, than in 2009?...or after Hillary has a chance to put Ted and Chucky into the next open slots...
    Same here. I think if this is going to get settled, this is the best case to do it with, the best justices to hear it, and the best timing to have it happen. Waiting will only make those factors go downhill.

    It is scary to think about the consequences of a bad ruling, though. That would be the time to invest in lots of heavy trash bags, silicon packets, and a shovel, IMO.

    But are we so scared of that that we are willing to keep giving up our rights one piece at a time? The end results are the same, so why not fight it now?

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    "Citizens die?"

    Dont they realize that unarmed citizens are dying every day? I hope all goes well with the Supreme Court.

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    Senior Member Array ronwill's Avatar
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    Let's hope that SCOTUS rules with true understanding of the 2A. In many instances in the past they have, but there's always a first. This ruling could put things back on track or irreparably set us back.

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    Kinda what we've always wanted, but were afraid it'd happen. One way or another I guess we'll see what the future is for our gun rights.
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    Well all of our eggs are in the SCOTUS basket now
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Distinguished Member Array bandit383's Avatar
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    "The petition also includes a long list of statistics it says bolsters its claims that the availability of handguns increases the number of suicides and endangers children and police officers. "No other provision of the Bill of Rights even arguably requires a government to tolerate serious physical harm on anything like the scale of the devastation worked by handguns," it states"

    Having a hard time connecting the dots...handguns increase the number of suicides??? Endangers children and police officers??? I can think of a hundred other reasons for suicide increases and dangers to children/police.

    Rick

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    It adds: "Whatever right the Second Amendment guarantees, it does not require the District to stand by while its citizens die."
    That's very lame to say the least ....... could well turn that on its head re citizens dying from BG's guns and no means to protect themselves.! So far the District DOES stand by while innocent folks get killed.

    Heads in dark places again.
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    Senior Member Array Pitmaster's Avatar
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    If and when the Supreme Court rules on this case. What would be the best outcome we could expect? Would it be realistic that all gun laws be tossed as happened in the death penalty ruling years ago? Is this even possible? Or would ownership and possession be allowed but restrictions on purchase be legal?

    We all know what the worst outcome would be.
    Pitmaster

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    Let's hope that the SCOTUS looks to the Founders for what they actually meant & NOT "the mainstream of American jurisprudence."

    It really isn't a secret what the Founders meant. We have their own words to go by:

    • George Mason: ". . . to disarm the people; that . . . was the best and most effectual way to enslave them."

    • Richard Henry Lee: ". . . to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."

    •James Madison, drafter of the Bill of Rights, in Federalist No. 46 scorned European despotisms as "afraid to trust the people with arms," and assured his countrymen that they need not fear their government because of "the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation."

    •Congressman Fisher Ames noted of Madison's proposals the "the rights of conscience, of bearing arms, . . . are declared to be inherent in the people."

    •Samuel Adams asserted in the Massachusetts convention that "the said Constitution be never construed . . . to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms."

    •James Monroe included "the right to keep and bear arms" in his list of basic human rights.

    •Patrick Henry said, "The great object is, that every man be armed. . . . Everyone who is able may have a gun."

    •Thomas Jefferson: "One loves to possess arms"; and advising his 15-year-old nephew, he wrote, "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives a moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks."

    Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state government, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people. — Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788

    George Mason said, "I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public servants."

    "Americans have a right and advantage of being armed, unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms." - James Madison, The Federalist Papers. No.46 at 243-244.

    GEORGE WASHINGTON, First President and Father of the Country: “A free people ought to be armed. " George Washington, speech of January 7, 1790, in the Boston Independent Chronicle, January 14, 1790.

    "The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in fill possession of them." - Zachariah Johnson, 3 Elliott, Debates at page 646.

    "The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed." - Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers, pages 184-188.

    "Arms in the hands of citizens [may] be used at individual discretion... in private self-defense..." - John Adams, A defense of the Constitutions of the Government of the USA, 471(1788)

    "To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them..." - Richard Henry Lee writing in "Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republic"

    The right of the people to bear arms is not “...in any manner dependent upon that instrument [The Constitution] for it's existence." - United States vs. Cruikshank, US Supreme Court, 1876.

    "That no man should scruple, or hesitate a moment to use arms in defense of so valuable a blessing [as liberty], on which all the good and evil of life depends; is clearly my opinion; yet Arms...should be the last resort." - George Washington, (Letter to George Mason, 1789).

    "... The right of the people to keep and bear.... may be regarded as the true palladium of liberty. The right to self defense is the first law of nature; in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest limits possible." - Judge St. George Tucker, Editor, Blackstone's Commentaries, P.300 (1803)

    "...arms...discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property.... Horrid mischief would ensue were [the law-abiding] deprived of the use of them." - Thomas Paine

    "Government big enough to supply everything that you need is big enough to take everything that you have." - Thomas Jefferson

    "Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - Thomas Jefferson quoting Ceaser Beccria.
    It has also been said that eliminating the Second will lead to the loss of the others as well..........
    (Those) who are trying to read the Second Amendment out of the Constitution by claiming it's not an individual right (are) courting disaster by encouraging others to use the same means to eliminate portions of the Constitution they don't like. -- Alan Dershowitz, Harvard Law School
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

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