US Supreme Court to hear Second Amendment challenge today

I felt it timely to discuss the “supreme’s” today. No, not Dianna Ross and the Supreme’s of Motown fame. Today we cover the U.S. Supreme Court.

June 23rd is the third anniversary of the dreadful Supreme Court decision regarding the Fifth Amendment as applied to the taking of Susette Kelo’s home in New London, CT.

Over the years other Amendments have been challenged such as our First Amendment freedom of speech. One famous (1919) case on the First Amendment heard by the high court, was Schenck v. United States, where Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes stated in this case his famous aphorism about “falsely shouting fire in a theatre” and set forth a “clear and present danger test” to judge whether speech is protected by the First Amendment.

Not to be overlooked today is another Constitution challenge being heard by our high court. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. “Gun rights and gun control advocates alike are anxiously awaiting the high court’s ruling, the first time since 1939 that the nation’s top justices have tackled the Second Amendment.” 

The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads:

“A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

The United States Supreme Court to hear “District of Columbia v. Heller-a case in which plaintiffs challenge the unconstitutional gun ban in the nation’s capital. The District of Columbia appealed a lower court’s ruling earlier this year affirming that the Second Amendment of the Constitution protects an individual right to keep and bear arms, and that the District’s bans on handguns, carrying firearms within the home, and possession of loaded or operable firearms for self-defense violate that right.”

For some recent background on this appeal I offer the following specifics from ABC News.

At issue is one of the great unresolved constitutional questions: Does the Second Amendment protect an individual’s right to keep and carry a gun, or does it only protect a state’s right to arm a militia?

The case came to the high court after Washington, D.C., resident Shelly Parker sued the city over its gun control law, which has been in effect since 1976. It is one of the toughest gun laws in the nation, banning handguns and requiring shotguns to be locked up.

“The criminals have the guns,” Parker said. “If you are a law-abiding citizen, the law in this city says you do not have a gun.” A lower court ruled in favor of Parker and overturned the gun law.

But the city’s mayor, Adrian Fenty, is fighting to keep the gun control law on the books. He says tough gun laws are essential in the city, where the crime rate is among the highest in the nation.

“Whatever right the Second Amendment guarantees, it does not require the district to stand by while its citizens die,”  said.

To read the entire ABC News report simply click on the following link:

http://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/SCOTUS/story?id=4464727&page=1

Juice readers. Although not always predictable, having a conservative court today, what are your expectations as to their ruling in this case?

And as we think about the Supreme Court, the next president of the U.S. may appoint two or three replacements in the next eight years. Folks, we are talking about lifetime appointments. Think about that fact as you decide whom to vote for this November.


About Larry Gilbert