Thursday, September 16, 2010

You've Come A Long Way Baby

The turnaround on gun control in the USA is stunning. It started with Marion Hammer, at the time a Florida State lobbyist and former NRA president. She proposed and got the first concealed carry law passed in Florida. All the clowns showed up, the streets would run red, blah blah blah ... But something happened after the passage of Florida's Concealed Carry Law ... NOTHING. No blood, no sensational news stories about shoot-outs at the intersections, nothing. And the public took notice ... When nothing happened the anti-gun crowd was flummoxed, they had advertised their spiel forever, and nothing happened. But her accomplishment, passing Florida's first law, quickly became a model for the nation

Why so? Because people are basically trustworthy, and no murder is against the law and other such stuff. Well actually to be truthful, something did happen, the crime rate dropped -- As crooks took note that robbing an armed citizen now included a more that slight, increased risk, the citizen would shoot back. Most important, the Florida Law showed the way, that people can be trusted with firearms, just as the Founders intended.

Recapping history from there, is this Reason magazine story:
It was the morning of June 26, 2008, and Alan Gura had just won the first case he’d ever argued in front of the Supreme Court. Before taking a media victory lap to celebrate his historic vindication of the Second Amendment in D.C. v. Heller, Gura headed to the Court’s public information office for a moment of privacy. He called an old buddy from law school, the Chicago attorney David Sigale. “File it,” Gura said.

“It” became, almost exactly two years later, Gura’s second victory before the Supreme Court, McDonald v. Chicago. That case—decided, like the first one, by a narrow 5-4 majority—established that the gun rights recognized in the District of Columbia because of Heller must also be respected by states and cities outside the purview of the federal government. The Second Amendment’s protection now applies not just to D.C.’s 600,000 residents but to more than 300 million people across the country.

The magnitude and reach of this earthquake in American law, which has touched off slow-motion aftershocks throughout the 50 states, are still uncertain. But whatever the future holds, Americans’ ability to own guns has, at long last, taken its place among the other individual rights spelled out in the Bill of Rights.

The invalidation of handgun bans throughout the country, accomplished in the space of two years, was sudden and surprising even to those who have spent decades laying the groundwork. Take Alan Gottlieb, founder and president of the Second Amendment Foundation, which began backing Gura’s various gun lawsuits after Heller. Since founding the SAF in 1974, Gottlieb has been hosting academic conferences, supporting legal scholars and historians, and filing carefully targeted lawsuits in defense of gun rights. Still, he says, “six years ago if you had said [the gun rights community would] see two cases get to the Supreme Court and two victories, I would have said, ‘Not in my lifetime. Maybe in someone else’s.’ ”
Read it all at the link, it's a refreshing article, where the Constitution was actually referred to. In particular, Justice Thomas, in his consenting opinion adds much history and analysis to the Second Amendment. Something all school kids should be taught, but likely never will.

And as they say, the rest is history ... read it or repeat it.

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