1 year, 1 month ago
Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens demonstrated the importance of America’s upcoming presidential choice as he spoke Monday to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. Justice Stevens told the assembled gun grabbers of the urgent need for Congress to adopt laws restricting the right to keep and bear arms.
As the author of the dissenting opinions in the Heller and McDonald cases, which affirmed the right of individuals to keep handguns in the home, Justice Stevens said the high court precedent still allows new laws rolling back our rights.
The 92-year-old jurist explained the landmark gun rulings leave room for restrictions on the right to carry outside the home, bans on certain styles of firearms, elimination of carry rights in “sensitive” places and background-check requirements for private gun sales.
“The Second Amendment provides no obstacle to regulations prohibiting the ownership or the use of the sorts of automatic weapons used in the tragic multiple killings in Virginia, Colorado and Arizona in recent years,” the Ford nominee said, incorrectly lumping together semi-automatic and automatic weapons, which already are highly regulated.
He added, “Maybe you have some kind of constitutional right to have a cellphone with a pre-dialed 911 in the number at your bedside, and that might provide you with a little better protection than a gun which you’re not used to using.”
Stevens forgets his history. As I’ve observed before, “There are always caveats, stipulations and complications when it comes to interpreting and applying the constitution. But a plain reading of the text requires that if our understanding contradicts the fundamental exigencies and vicissitudes of life as it existed in the colonial times that hatched the constitution, then our understanding is in need of modification. Weapons were ubiquitous in the colonies for sporting and recreation, protection against animals, protection against people and protection against governmental tyranny (“The British never lost sight of the fact that without their gun control program, they could never control America”). Each was in its own way a threat to the safety and health of strong families.”
So Justice Stevens ignores the warp and woof of American history, and without that familiarity and understanding, no one, including a Supreme Court Justice, will be able to make sense of our founding documents.
But more immediately, the Supreme Court ruling in Castle Rock Versus Gonzales decided that the police do not have a duty to protect citizens. Justice Stevens – forgetting (or ignoring) his Supreme Court history – is recommending the defenestration of a clear right (i.e., the Second Amendment) in favor of one that is an utter fabrication of his own imagination, i.e., “some kind of constitutional right to have a cellphone with a pre-dialed 911 in the number at your bedside.”
Such is the case with washed-up, has-been progressives who simply refuse to acquiesce to the nature of the American system. Bitterness defines them.