What If We Lose?

Armed Canadian asks that question: What if we lose at the Supreme Court?   I think he’s more optimistic than I am.  While I agree that in the short term, it would be a huge boost to the gun rights movement, I would note that after the Kelo decision, there was a persistent outcry from quite a lot of directions, but to date I’ve seen very little movement on eminent domain reform.  People have gotten tired and moved on.

A defeat at the Supreme Court will hurt us very much over the long term, because the anti-gun groups will be able to say “The second amendment doesn’t mean anything,” and for all practical purposes, they’d be right.

4 thoughts on “What If We Lose?”

  1. My optimism got really tempered by that post you refer to on Arms and the Law an hour after I posted this. Any victory for us in a collective rights model is founded on the idea that some arms would remain protected provided we could demonstrate some relationship to militia service.

    If the State itself can set rules that says they’ll arm the militia and that unorganized militiamen/women need not apply, then there is no individual right to arms at all under a collective 2A. The Court will have read the right clean out of the Constitution.

    We couldn’t even demand a change over to a Swiss militia model since there is no way given our legal history with machine guns will they allow for civilian home possession of machine guns in militia service even if issued to them by the Government.

    This is the danger that we face with this going to SCOTUS. As depressing as it is to contemplate a loss, we get a little, if cold, comfort in at least knowing where we stand.

    There’s always the fact we might be getting an answer we don’t like and have to be ready to accept that.

    A sidenote on Kelo, I don’t think backlash on Kelo has had time to play out. Unfortunately given the Court’s glacial pace on such issues, Kelo could remain bad precedent for cases for decades to come and eventually find its way to becoming a discredited ruling from a bygone time as other good law weaves around it in an attempt to marginalize it. 4th Amendment, meet 2nd Amendment, he knows how you’re going to feel.

  2. If you read the Parker decision, you’ll find a gold nugget in their about how the Supremes(I believe in a 1989 case but don’t quote on that) decided that the Phrase “the people”, which appears several times in the Bill Of Rights, must be read with uniformity.

    “The people” in the 1st ammendment are the same as “the people” in the 2nd ammendment.

    This is now court precedent and SCOTUS knows this.

  3. Unless the Court chooses to apply the words “well regulated militia” as have meaning in limiting how the right is exercised. After all, they’ve happily allowed for reasonable restrictions on speech and freedom of assembly despite there being the words “Congress shall make no law” in the 1st Amendment. And those restrictions on 1st Amendment conduct have been upheld.

    I agree that “the People” means what it says. The question is will SCOTUS stay faithful to them or will them try to work around them creatively and tie 2A rights into militia service. And then use the 10th Circuit test criteria to effectively deny an individual right to arms by simply permitting the state militia you might be a member of to say they don’t allow you to use your own guns.

    At that point, there is no possible mechanism for any defense of keeping arms for militia service since they are already saying otherwise and the Court has now, as Sebastian says, turned your right in title into a privilege for good.

    At that point if we can’t muster support within the gun owning community, we are well and truly finished. Once the “cold, dead hands” crowd has been shot and killed by protected Government arms, any shift in the political wind will finish us off and we will be just like Britain.

  4. but there will be a lot of dead government arms bearers, should that come to pass.

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