From a Supreme Court case in 2000,Â Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U.S. 914, 1001 (2000), Footnote 16 of Justice Thomas’ dissent:
“The fact that the statutory term â€œpartial birth abortionâ€ may express a political or moral judgment, whereas â€œdilation and extractionâ€ does not, is irrelevant. It is certainly true that technical terms are frequently empty of normative content. (Of course, the decision to use a technical term can itself be normative. … But, so long as statutory terms are adequately defined, there is no requirement that Congress or state legislatures draft statutes using morally agnostic terminology. See, e.g., 18 U.S.C. Â§ 922(v) (making it unlawful to â€œmanufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weaponâ€); Kobayashi & Olson, et al., In Re 101 California Street: A Legal and Economic Analysis of Strict Liability For The Manufacture And Sale Of â€œAssault Weapons,â€ 8 Stan. L. & Polâ€™y Rev. 41, 43 (1997) (â€œPrior to 1989, the term â€˜assault weaponâ€™ did not exist in the lexicon of firearms. It is a political term, developed by anti-gun publicists to expand the category of â€˜assault riflesâ€™ so as to allow an attack on as many additional firearms as possible on the basis of undefined â€˜evilâ€™ appearanceâ€). See also Meese, 481 U.S., at 484â€”485.”
Emphasis mine. This shows at least one of the justices gets it. If you love your gun rights, pray for Justice Thomas’ good health.
h/t to Annual Firearms Law Seminar.