Roberts and The Left Lead Supreme Court Against Gun Rights

P. Gardner Goldsmith | June 17, 2020
Font Size

Since 2008, and the now infamous “District of Columbia v. Heller” majority opinion penned by Antonin Scalia, many Americans who understand the nature of rights and the Second Amendment have lamented Scalia’s wording, because at the close of the opinion in which he said the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right (easy to figure out), he added that… er, rights can be attenuated.

Which undercuts the very definition of the word “right”, since rights are unassailable by the state – that’s the point.

It turns out that Scalia’s error has caused all kinds of problems, now compounded by Chief Justice John Roberts and the liberal majority on the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS)as they just rebuffed numerous cases brought by folks defending their gun rights, and made more frustrating by how some report on the story.

So, for example, we have Richard Wolf, of USA Today, whose first line speaks volumes:

The Supreme Court wasted little time Monday making clear its reluctance to wade back into the national battle over gun rights.

The very fact that he can express a sentence saying there’s a “national battle over gun rights” is problematic. If people have an inherent, individual right to keep and bear arms for self-defense – which they DO – then how can there be a “national battle” over them? Wouldn’t it be a given that others can’t infringe on one’s right to self-defense, that doing so -- whether it be alone or with a gang called “government” -- is improper and aggressive? One doesn’t need the wording of the Second Amendment to know this as manifestly true. It’s simply based on logic.

But Wolf goes on:

After refusing to rule on a challenge to New York City gun restrictions because they were rescinded while the case was pending, the court turned away all potential replacements that would have given its conservative justices a chance to strengthen the Second Amendment.

Why should the Second Amendment need “strengthening?” After all, it’s a simple statement prohibiting ALL forms of government from infringing on the right to keep and bear arms.

Perhaps 19th Century philosopher Lysander Spooner was right when, in his treatise, “No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority”, he pointed out that the Constitution has not stopped politicians from expanding the purview of the state and increasing their attacks on individual rights…?

Sure seems to be the case, because Wolf added:

The justices had a long list of challenges to choose from, including several testing the threshold issue of whether guns can be carried in public nationwide, as they currently are in some 40 states. Other issues included bans on assault weapons, high-capacity magazines, and handgun sales.

There were ten gun-rights cases, total, that the SCOTUS could have heard, many of which object to similar infringements in different states, but it’s productive to highlight a few major points…

First, the earlier case in which the Court refused to hear a challenge brought by New York City residents against a city statute making it virtually impossible for them to take firearms outside the Big Apple (where most of the gun training facilities are located) saw Roberts and the lefties turn a blind eye because the city authoritarians argued that they had changed the statute (they changed it after the challenge was brought to lower court), to allow for easier movement. But the fact remains that the city government has the gall to create such a statute, and they can revise it again. The point is that the suit was brought before the revision, and the injustice was DONE, harming people and attacking their rights.

Roberts and his pals, Kagan, Sotomayor, Breyer, Kavanaugh, and Ginsberg, all voted to allow the injustice to stand, thus allowing the precedent and practice of the city “controls” to stand. And their majority opinion in refusing the case was merely two pages, while the dissent, written by Sam Alito, was 31. In it, he included this, as noted in an excellent piece on the topic by Ammoland:

By incorrectly dismissing this case as moot, the Court permits our docket to be manipulated in a way that should not be countenanced.

And he added:

Since then (“Heller” and the McDonald V Chicago case of 2010), the lower courts have decided numerous cases involving Second Amendment challenges to a variety of federal, state, and local laws. Most have failed. We have been asked to review many of these decisions, but until this case, we denied all such requests. On January 22, 2019, we granted review to consider the constitutionality of a New York City ordinance that burdened the right recognized in Heller.

And his final point is extremely important:

In sum, the City’s travel restriction burdened the very right recognized in Heller. History provides no support for a restriction of this type. The City’s public safety arguments were weak on their face, were not substantiated in any way, and were accepted below with no serious probing. And once we granted review in this case, the City’s public safety concerns evaporated. We are told that the mode of review in this case is representative of the way Heller has been treated in the lower courts. If that is true, there is cause for concern. This case is not moot. The City violated petitioners’ Second Amendment right, and we should so hold.

And that’s just the earlier case.

If one looks at other the other ten cases, one sees a slasher-film’s worth of injustices, including, as Wolf notes, state attacks on magazine capacity and rapidity of fire, and one of the most important aspects of the supposed constitutional US system, the ability of people to open-carry nationwide.

And this doesn’t involve solely the right to keep and bear arms. It ties-in the important clause of the Constitution called “The Full Faith and Credit Clause”, found in Article Four, Section One, of the so-called rule book, and it’s important because the clause clearly mandates that any legal license in one state must be recognized with “full faith and credit” in all states. This means that marriages will be recognized from state to state, driver’s licenses will be recognized as valid from state to state, and, if the states are going to insult us and attack our rights by engaging in unconstitutional “gun licensing”, any gun license issued in one state must be recognized in all.

But, of course, the leftists aren’t interested in that, and neither is John Roberts. As Adam Winkler writes for The Atlantic:

So what explains the Court’s refusal to hear another Second Amendment case? Only the justices can be certain, but one thing we do know is that the Court’s decision to take a case requires the agreement of only four justices. And we also know that four justices (Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Brett Kavanaugh) are all on record saying that the Court should take a Second Amendment case and address the very unanswered questions posed by the cases it turned away today. Those justices could have forced the Court to take one of them, but they didn’t—and one suspects that’s because of John Roberts.

Given the number of times Chief Justice Roberts has turned his back on fundamental rights and the wording of the very Constitution that created his seat, that seems to be the case.

mrc merch