The Right Of The People

By a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court of the United States today ruled in the Heller case that the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution is exactly what the founding fathers intended; that a right “of the people” means “people”, not “the National Guard”.

The court dealt forty years of erosion of civil liberties and contempt for the law-abiding citizen a sharp kick in the groin with pointy boots. The decision stands as the capstone on one of the most remarkable bits of grassroots politics in American history – a three-decade battle where the nation’s people, black and white and Republican and Democrat, fought their elites first to a standstill, and then came back to an escalating series of victories, starting in the courts of public opinion, extending through legislatures and city councils around the nation, to today.

This ruling euthanizes the DC Gun Ban – which is was, like most gun control measures, a racist concoction intended to keep all those brown-skinned people from running amok in the nation’s capitol, to return us in deed if not in thought to the days when black people had a separate, unequal justice system…

To quote Lyle Denniston of ScotusBlog:

the Court nullified two provisions of the city of Washington’s strict 1976 gun control law: a flat ban on possessing a gun in one’s home, and a requirement that any gun — except one kept at a business — must be unloaded and disassembled or have a trigger lock in place. The Court said it was not passing on a part of the law requiring that guns be licensed. It said that issuing a license to a handgun owner, so the weapon can be used at home, would be a sufficient remedy for the Second Amendment violation of denying any access to a handgun.

The decision opens up possibilities for litigation and legislation on further gun bans, like Chicago’s, and also at least partially ejects US V. Miller from its misbegotten role as definitive precedent on Second Amendment issues.

This is not the end of the war over the Second Amendment, of course. It’s not a complete victory; licensing at the end of the day is conceptually scarcely less odious or abuse-prone than a ban (as we’ve found out in Saint Paul this past year). The orcs still control much; many cities (or at least their governing elites) still pay lumpen, unthinking fealty to the notion that a disarmed, docile citizenry is a safe one.

Some of this world’s people know better…:

…that the only genuinely secure people in this world are the ones that can see to their own security.

Yes, folks – this is serious business.

This is far from the end. Indeed, as Churchill said, it’s the end of the beginning…:

…and much hard fighting remains.

The court did the right thing – and now, this is a battle we Real Americans have to consolidate, extend, and win in the legislatures, City Councils, and in Congress.

The orcs will regroup and try to consolidate and, eventually, make another assault on the God-given rights of the law-abiding American. It is inevitable; it is the way of the orc to feed on your freedom. Softcore fascists like Heather Martens and Wes Skoglund aren’t drying up and blowing away because of this ruling; it remains to us to extinguish the smoldering dung-heap of that whole school of thought, in the legislature, in court, and most importantly in the hearts of people smart enough to know the difference between “rights of the people” and “privileges granted by your masters”.

But we – the Americans who’ve fought long and hard to keep this issue on the national radar, and drive this nation back from the insane nadir of the collectivist seventies – deserve a moment, if only a moment, to relax and enjoy the fruits of today’s victory. It’s a great respite from a dismal political season, and a solid jumping-off point for what comes next.

Enjoy it. I sure am.

To all of you who’ve spent so much time, toil and treasure winning today’s victory, a salute. You’ve earned it.

Tomorrow? Well, it’s back to work. Back to the endless job of putting the enemies of freedom to the rhetorical point of the political pike – one Congressman, one Justice, one voter at a time.

The way we’ve done it all along.

Thank you. And God Bless America.

(Over the top a little? Not really. Oh, I’m doing the endzone happy dance. I’m doing to do the endzone happy dance on David Lillehaug’s neck – rhetorically speaking, of course. Today’s a great day, and I’m going to treat it as such).

37 thoughts on “The Right Of The People

  1. Dammit, Mitch, read Scalia’s fine print.

    Lady Liberty there’s gonna be facing some hard time for her serious firepower.

    “We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition
    of prohibiting the carrying of ‘dangerous and unusual weapons.’”

    They don’t want Lady Liberty to be dangerous to the government.

    It’s a docile citizenry they’re maintaining, my friend.
    /jc

  2. Nah. It’s just another legislative challenge.

    Once you get “individual right” established, the rest of it’s just footwork in fifty statehouses and a bunch of city halls.

    Totally doable.

  3. Mitch is right. And let us not forget that the disarmament crew never wanted this to ever get the the SCOTUS in the first place because they knew in their little sheep hearts that they’d lose.

    This smackdown will certianly make them think long and carefully before they try to stretch their wings anytime soon.

    Me? I’m going to celebrate this afternoon by treating two of my bestest and closest friends to an ammo feeding frenzy the likes of which Bill’s has rarely seen.

    BTW, next time anyone tells you that Bush’s presidency didn’t accomplish anything…well, you know.

  4. No, Swiftee. The Bush residency accomplished a lot. Just nothing good.

    You go and shoot off your store-bought phalluses, since you so clearly lack the God-given article. And tomorrow you can start pushing your gun-nut agenda in the courts with your activist, right-wing judges. It will be the best thing that ever happened to Democrats seeking office. Used to be you kooks could run against out-of-control judges striking down popular laws in favor of newly rights. No more. Be careful what you wish for, wingnuts!

  5. store-bought phalluses

    Uh uh, Clown. SCOTUS just ruled; the phallus is God-Given and individual.

  6. Be careful what you wish for, wingnuts

    To be the meat in a Scarlett Johnannson/Rachel Weisz sandwich?

    What could go wrong?

  7. Angryclown sounds so……angry.

    Having his legal worldview overturned makes his wig sag.

  8. I will direct your attention, more courteously than I did with nerdbert, to my view that Scalia is right.

  9. You see, Bill C can’t read any better than nerdbert. I think you’re the meat in an idiot sandwich, Mitch.

  10. my view that Scalia is right.

    I need to read Scalia as well as people more versed in legal stuff than I, but Scalia’s reference to Miller is hardly unexpected; a lot of conservative analysts have been watching out for this scenario; “The Militia is individuals, but Miller raised questions about the exact types of hardware applicable”.

    As I see it so far (and I’m no lawyer), Scalia merely noted that the court isn’t deciding what kinds of hardware are appropriate for “the militia” (all of us individuals). That’ll be decided in further actions and (if the NRA is smart, and they generally are) in a bunch of legislatures.

  11. I will direct your attention, more courteously than I did with nerdbert, to my view that Scalia is right.

    And your intellectual honesty here is noted. Your other comments however belie your true feelings and opinions of everyone who lives farther than 100 miles inland from either coast. That’s still juvenile. And what we’ve come to expect in these situations.

  12. In other words, a lot – perhaps the majority – of conservative legal commentators were saying “Expect the court to rule that it’s an individual right, but to refrain from defining makes, models and calibers”.

    They left a lot of details to be worked out in other courts, in Congress, and especially by the states.

    But with the big win – the individual right – that just got a lot easier.

  13. “And tomorrow you can start pushing your gun-nut agenda in the courts with your activist, right-wing judges.”

    Wrong, as usual AssClown.

    We are not looking for the courts to do anything for us. Our agenda is to keep the courts, or any branch of government, from doing things to us.

    Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to hold your mommy’s hand when you need comfort and guidance…get your blankey and your nook, she’ll be in as soon as she gets done with her shift in Time Square.

  14. One justice away from a bad decision. Sad.

    Angryclown, you are so well named. Now what is my wife compensating for with HER guns? Personally, I just think it’s the old one about God made man and woman, but Colonel Colt made them equal.

  15. Just read these bits:

    In a dissent he summarized from the bench, Justice John Paul Stevens wrote that the majority “would have us believe that over 200 years ago, the Framers made a choice to limit the tools available to elected officials wishing to regulate civilian uses of weapons.”

    Considering their recent war of independence to extricate the colonies’ throat out from under the symbolic British boot of oppression, you damn well better believe that’s EXACTLY what the framers were trying to accomplish

    Justice Stephen Breyer wrote a separate dissent in which he said, “In my view, there simply is no untouchable constitutional right guaranteed by the Second Amendment to keep loaded handguns in the house in crime-ridden urban areas.”

    Excuse me, Justice Breyer? A man of your academic accomplishments should at least realize that THERE WERE NO CRIME RIDDEN URBAN AREAS IN 1791. That’s about as logical as saying “free speech doesn’t apply to the internet because there was no internet in 1776, so they couldn’t POSSIBLY have meant that”

    It doesn’t matter if it’s a home in a crime ridden urban area, or a home safely ensconced away behind the locked gates of Bearpath. IT GUARANTEES EXACTLY THAT RIGHT.

    ————————-

    That some computer support peon schlub can make these difficult mental leaps while they can’t (or in this case, WON’T) says all we need to hear about their continued bench based attempts at legislation.

    Freedom: 1 – Tyranny: 0

  16. AC says “But it’s pretty clear the Second Amendment gives you an individual right to own a 1780’s-era musket. ”

    But Scalia says

    “Some have made the argument, bordering on the frivolous, that only those arms in existence in the 18th century are protected by the Second Amendment. We do not interpret constitutional rights that way… the Second Amendment extends, prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms, even those that were not in existence at the time of the founding.”

    Poor sad frivolous clown.

  17. The biggest victory is that the Court used a strict constructionist approach to the actual text, interpreted in light of the understanding of those who adopted it, rather than a Living Document approach that considers what France would like us to do.

    Strict Constructionist judges were the key. For Roberts, Thomas, and Scalia, thank you Bushs I and II.

    .

  18. But it’s pretty clear the Second Amendment gives you an individual right to own a 1780’s-era musket.
    Apply that argument to the rest of the Bill of Rights: free speech only includes actually speaking or shouting words and printing pamphlets on a moveable type press. Freedom of religion only applies to monotheism and deism.
    And warrantless wiretapping would be legal because there weren’t any telephones in 1793.

  19. Bike Bubba said: “Angryclown, you are so well named. Now what is my wife compensating for with HER guns?”

    Her husband’s lack of a pen1s.

    What is this, slow-pitch softball?

  20. Bill C: I must apologize for being unclear. My courtesy is reserved for Mitch, whom I consider a friend. You and nerdbert share a seat on the short bus that is the SitD comments section.

    Mitch: “nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.”

    And: “We also recognize another important limitation on the right to keep and carry arms. Miller said, as we have explained, that the sorts of weapons protected were those “in common use at the time.” 307 U. S., at 179. We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition
    of prohibiting the carrying of “dangerous and unusual weapons.””

    Also: “It may be objected that if weapons that are most useful in military service—M-16 rifles and the like—may be banned, then the Second Amendment right is completely detached from the prefatory clause.”

  21. Swiftee said: “Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to hold your mommy’s hand when you need comfort and guidance…get your blankey and your nook, she’ll be in as soon as she gets done with her shift in Time Square.”

    Haha! Cause she works at Applebee’s you mean? Or maybe the Disney Store? You’re going to need to keep a little more current if you want to play in Angryclown’s league, little fella. As anyone who’s seen or read anything about Times Square in the last, oh, decade or so will attest, it’s full of fat-ass tourists from places like Minnesota gawking at oversized mall stores. You couldn’t find a less seedy neighborhood. But then you don’t get around much, do you? Or read stuff. Or bathe regularly.

  22. Yeah, the clown showed a very interesting dichotomy here: that rarely exercised intellectual part of his brain tells him that Scalia is right, but the part that actually composes his missives massively disagrees. I noted his “agreement” with Scalia, but dismissed his flash of intellectual honesty since the rest of his silly little comment indicated he wished Scalia wasn’t right.

  23. Let me make it clear for you, nerdbert. You wingnuts do a lot of stupid things – all day, every day. If Angryclown were to try to outlaw them all, he wouldn’t have time to ride his unicycle or practice his juggling.

    Many of the stupid things you do (not the drooling or rubbing your own excrement in your hair, alas) are actually protected by the US of A Constitution. For example, the First Amendment gives you the right to blather like an idiot – in the exercise of which liberty you stand in second place to no man.

    Similarly, the Second Amendment gives you the right to own a handgun. This right, which Angryclown recognizes, is nonetheless worrisome when entrusted to a damn-fool idiot like yourself.

    You see, in many less tolerant countries, you would like have been drowned at birth or staked to a mountain and left to die. Here in America, you are free to practice your Constitutionally-guranteed stupidity to the full extent possible, given the practical limitations imposed on you by that very stupidity, of course.

    Angryclown is proud to live in a country that permits nerdbert to exercize the myriad stupidities that are integral to his existence. You should be proud too. It is your stupidity, nerdbert, that lets Angryclown know he’s free.

  24. “the First Amendment gives you the right to blather like an idiot ”

    But only using the common dialect that was in use in 1780. None of this modern lingo!

  25. “Let me make it clear for you”

    When you say things like this, angryclown, it would be nice if you actually did make things clear. Instead we get a whole lot of “stupid” this and “stupid” that, without much in the way of:

    1) What behavior angryclown even thinks is stupid.
    2) Why angryclown thinks these mystery behaviors are stupid.

    I realize it is not your “role” to bring clarity to any conversation angryclown, but you could at least refrain from lying about it.

  26. AC wrote:
    You see, in many less tolerant countries, you would like have been drowned at birth or staked to a mountain and left to die.

    To which the only sensible reply comes from PB Shelley:

    Monarch of Gods and Dæmons, and all Spirits
    But One, who throng those bright and rolling worlds
    Which Thou and I alone of living things
    Behold with sleepless eyes! regard this Earth
    Made multitudinous with thy slaves, whom thou [1.5]
    Requitest for knee-worship, prayer, and praise,
    And toil, and hecatombs of broken hearts,
    With fear and self-contempt and barren hope.
    Whilst me, who am thy foe, eyeless in hate,
    Hast thou made reign and triumph, to thy scorn, [1.10]
    O’er mine own misery and thy vain revenge.
    Three thousand years of sleep-unsheltered hours,
    And moments aye divided by keen pangs
    Till they seemed years, torture and solitude,
    Scorn and despair, — these are mine empire: — [1.15]
    More glorious far than that which thou surveyest
    From thine unenvied throne, O Mighty God!
    Almighty, had I deigned to share the shame
    Of thine ill tyranny, and hung not here
    Nailed to this wall of eagle-baffling mountain, [1.20]
    Black, wintry, dead, unmeasured; without herb,
    Insect, or beast, or shape or sound of life.
    Ah me! alas, pain, pain ever, for ever!

  27. AssClown crowed: “You see, in many less tolerant countries, you would like have been drowned at birth or staked to a mountain and left to die. ”

    Well AssClown, this is the United States of America. If you, or your lunatic lefty pals would like to take a shot at drowning me or staking me out, I say go for it. ‘Course you’ll need to deal with my “little friend” first.

    You’d have better luck in Canada.

  28. ya know, angryclown, they say that when a man insists on insulting others instead of presenting an argument, he’s usually projecting.

  29. Swiftee said: “Well AssClown, this is the United States of America. If you, or your lunatic lefty pals would like to take a shot at drowning me or staking me out, I say go for it. ‘Course you’ll need to deal with my “little friend” first.”

    Angryclown wants nothing to do with your “little friend.” So zip up and go take your Thorazine.

  30. Pingback: Freedom requires a ready defense by the people *updated* — Shining City

  31. Pingback: Shot in the Dark » Blog Archive » Due to Gun Control

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