I’m actually rather surprised by this latest from Paul Helmke, attacking the fact that the US citizenship test accepts the right to bear arms as an answer to the question “What are two rights of everyone living in the United States?”:
Next, the USCIS neglects eight out of the ten Amendments in the Bill of Rights, including: the right to be secure in our â€œpersons, houses, papers and effectsâ€ (Fourth); the right against self-incrimination (Fifth); the right to a speedy and public trial (Sixth); and the right to a trial by jury (Seventh). With so many rights to choose from, itâ€™s as if the USCIS got tired of reading the whole Constitution.
Finally, the â€œright to bear armsâ€ is, in fact, not available to â€œeveryone living in the United States.â€ While the U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to revisit this matter in the DC vs. Heller case, the vast majority of the courts have previously ruled that the right of the people to keep and bear arms must be related to service in a well-regulated militia. In addition, well-established and unchallenged Federal law prohibits â€œmany living in the United States,â€ including juveniles, felons and the dangerously mentally ill (among other categories) from legally possessing guns.
Of all the arguments to make, why pick on the citizenship test?Â Regardless of what Paul thinks the second amendment does, or doesn’t mean, a 2003 Gallup/NCC poll found that 68% of Americans believed that the second amendment protects a right to keep and bear arms.Â Only 28% believed the Brady interpretation.Â Most constitutional scholars these days have rejected that interpretation as well.
I’ll agree with Paul that there should probably be more correct answers on that list, but why penalize new immigrants to this country because they hold similar views as the rest of their countrymen, and because they can read the plain language of the constitution which guarantees that right to the people.
It seems to me the Brady’s could find better uses of their blog other than nitpicking the citizenship test to penalize new immigrants for offering a reasonable answer they happen not to like.Â And here I thought the right were the ones who were anti-immigration.