Lawyer Gal's Blog

A Young Lawyer's Perspective

Since it’s too hot to do anything else, lets talk about guns.

Here in Ohio, it is 93 degrees and the ac at my office is not denting the heat!  For some reason, the heat makes my mental acuity lethargic, so the best blog idea I could amount is guns.

For those that are not enthralled by Supreme Court action, then you may not have heard that the almighty Court rendered a really rare Second Amendment decision this session.

Newbie Samual Alito authored a majority opinion in McDonald v. City of Chicago.  Specifically, the gun law in question came from Chicago, a city that had a long-standing handgun ban dating back to 1983.  The Court told a lower court to reevaluate the law, stating that states and cities must respect the Second Amendment.  Although the Court didn’t flat-out strike the law as unconstitutional, the effect is to invalidate outright gun bans across the nation.  According to the opinion, law-abiding citizens have to a right to act on the belief that

“their safety and the safety of other law-abiding members of the community

would be enhanced by the possession of handguns in the home.”

The Court was far from clear, which Stephen Breyer saw as a problem in his dissent.  The decision did not specify the constitutional limits on gun laws.  A few key issues that could be litigated include:

-Bans on people under the age of 21 buying or owning guns;

-One-gun-a-month purchase limits in California, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia;

-Georgia’s ban on carrying guns into churches;

-Bans on guns in bars

Another issue that could potentially alter gun jurisprudence is the make-up of the Court.  The decision was the most narrow possible at 5-4.  If one conservative justice is replaced by a liberal one, the Court’s stance could change drastically.

For many politicians, guns are symbolic connection to their constituency.  Here are a few photos of politicians touting their Americanism. I say, as usual, Arnold does it best.

July 6, 2010 Posted by | Your legal rights | 8 Comments