Scalia: Guns May be Regulated
Scalia: Guns May be Regulated
By John Aloysius Farrell
July 29, 2012 | 10:03 a.m.
Justice Antonin Scalia, one of the Supreme Court's most vocal and conservative justices, said on Sunday that the Second Amendment leaves room for U.S. legislatures to regulate guns, including menacing hand-held weapons.
"It will have to be decided in future cases," Scalia said on Fox News Sunday. But there were legal precedents from the days of the Founding Fathers that banned frightening weapons which a constitutional originalist like himself must recognize. There were also "locational limitations" on where weapons could be carried, the justice noted.
When asked if that kind of precedent would apply to assault weapons, or 100-round ammunition magazines like those used in the recent Colorado movie theater massacre, Scalia declined to speculate. "We'll see," he said. '"It will have to be decided."
As an originalist scholar, Scalia looks to the text of the Constitution—which confirms the right to bear arms—but also the context of 18th-century history. “They had some limitations on the nature of arms that could be borne," he told host Chris Wallace.
In a wide-ranging interview, Scalia also stuck by his criticism of Chief Justice John Roberts and the majority opinion in the ruling that upheld the Affordable Care Act this summer. "You don't interpret a penalty to be a pig. It can't be a pig," said Scalia, of the court's decision to call the penalty for not obtaining health insurance a tax. "There is no way to regard this penalty as a tax."
Scalia, a septuagenarian, said he had given no thought to retiring. "My wife doesn't want me hanging around the house," he joked. But he did say he would try to time his retirement from the court so that a justice of similar conservative sentiments would take his place, presumably as the appointee of a Republican president. "Of course I would not like to be replaced by somebody who sets out immediately to undo" what he has spent decades trying to achieve, the justice said.
Isn't anyone listening?! Legally ownership of automatic weapons is already restricted. As far as I know, 'semi-automatic weapons don't do that.
(Watch for someone to tell me I'm wrong. "They can do that") :)
“They had some limitations on the nature of arms that could be borne," he told host Chris Wallace."
This is essentially what SCOTUS said in Heller. Heller was not a resounding affirmation of our Second Amendment rights. Heller is probably the best we will ever get. See III pages 54-55.
Like most rights, the right secured by the Second
Amendment is not unlimited. From Blackstone through
the 19th-century cases, commentators and courts routinely
explained that the right was not a right to keep and
carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever
and for whatever purpose. See, e.g., Sheldon, in 5 Blume
346; Rawle 123; Pomeroy 152–153; Abbott 333. For example,
the majority of the 19th-century courts to consider the
question held that prohibitions on carrying concealed
weapons were lawful under the Second Amendment or
state analogues. See, e.g., State v. Chandler, 5 La. Ann.,
at 489–490; Nunn v. State, 1 Ga., at 251; see generally 2
Kent *340, n. 2; The American Students’ Blackstone 84, n.
11 (G. Chase ed. 1884). Although we do not undertake an
exhaustive historical analysis today of the full scope of the
Second Amendment, nothing in our opinion should be
taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the
possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or
laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places
such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing
conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of
Cite as: 554 U. S. ____ (2008) 55
Opinion of the Court
We also recognize another important limitation on the
right to keep and carry arms. Miller said, as we have
explained, that the sorts of weapons protected were those
“in common use at the time.” 307 U. S., at 179. We think
that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition
of prohibiting the carrying of “dangerous and unusual
See 4 Blackstone 148–149 (1769); 3 B. Wilson,
Works of the Honourable James Wilson 79 (1804); J.
Dunlap, The New-York Justice 8 (1815); C. Humphreys, A
Compendium of the Common Law in Force in Kentucky
482 (1822); 1 W. Russell, A Treatise on Crimes and Indictable
Misdemeanors 271–272 (1831); H. Stephen, Summary
of the Criminal Law 48 (1840); E. Lewis, An Abridgment
of the Criminal Law of the United States 64 (1847); F.
Wharton, A Treatise on the Criminal Law of the United
States 726 (1852). See also State v. Langford, 10 N. C.
381, 383–384 (1824); O’Neill v. State, 16 Ala. 65, 67 (1849);
English v. State, 35 Tex. 473, 476 (1871); State v.
I believe scalia may be a sell out I don't trust him
that's fine ..... just as I believe there are limitations to be placed on Gov't :cool:
The problem with Scalia is that he is a modern day republican prone to all of their same pit falls (see Citizens United case).
I'm going to start OC'ing a musket and single shot black powder pistol. Both in calibers greater than .50. Maybe along with traditional reenactment garb. And a freaking sword. Saber. Whatever. A USMC NCO saber. Hells yeah. And a freaking bayonet that puts my mosin bayonet to shame.
Were there any BP revolvers back then? My understanding was that cap and ball revolvers were invented around 100 years after independence... Correct?
Antonin Scalia is the most conservative, pro-second amendment justice to serve on the court in the last 100 years or so. He's probably the most brilliant legal scholar as well.
While many of us, myself included, may dislike his interpretation, there can be no doubt in my mind that he has more knowledge of the constitution than all of us put together.
I think that sometimes in reading the constitution, we need to read the opinions of folks like Scalia, Hugo Black, Benjamin Cordoza, Oliver Wendell Holmes etc, and try to get a feel for what the founding fathers really meant, and not what we wish they had meant.
I personally think the Second amendment is quite clear when it says "shall not be infringed," OTOH, I don't have an I.Q. of 180, and I haven't dedicated my entire life to the study of constitutional law.
Let's be a bit cautious about criticizing a good friend even if we have a disagreement with him.
Just something to think about.:)
Disagree with you there,locutus.
The Constitution wasn't written so that only people with enormous IQ's and lifelong employment as a lawyer can understand it.
I think elitist monkeying around with the simple,direct meaning of "shall not be infringed" in order to avoid the necessary repeal of all "gun control" in order to be in full compliance with the 2A is bull****.
And I think the only reason he did it was because he wanted to avoid the backlash of having to release and pardon tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of Americans wrongfully "convicted" of violating "gun control" "laws",along with the political backlash of denouncing a large part of an entire parties platform as truly illegitimate.
So he concocted a whole host of debatable reasons for not invalidating the entirety of "gun control" and restoring the 2A to its rightful authority as a restriction on the whole of government infringing on the right of the people to keep and bear arms.
And because of this,we now face justification of "gun control" not built on the shaky foundation of usurpations of power from the Commerce Clause,but from the second amendment itself supposedly allowing "reasonable regulations"- which in the past have been laws that disarm slaves and freed blacks,without any real federal laws being made -no longstanding federal precedent- until the 1930's.
Its an example of pure revisionist history and judicial activism in support of a concept that has its roots in the darkest history of this nation on the one hand and no "long stranding precedent" beyond the progressive socialist era on the other.
The only limitation to MY rights are the rights of others- not unjust and illegitimate "laws" made by the federal (or any state) government outside the boundaries of the highest law of the land.
Without question,the entire court -and not just one political wing- is enamored of itself and the power it can wield,as well as of its place within a powerful federal government that it refuses to limit lawfully.
They enjoy their power,and concoct outright Orwellian excuses for the support and growth of such power.
All that being said-
What I find really interesting is how a man so smart and well schooled in this issue as Scalia can fathom to justify the "reasonable regulations" of the first amendment that pretty much encompass your right to speak freely but don't allow you to violate other peoples rights by slander,libeling,or threating them,as being the same as 20,000 federal laws complete with a special federal police agency to enforce them which are used to "reasonably regulate" the Second Amendment object- arms.
How would America look if the first amendment were as regulated and policed as the Second Amendment is?
Common sense seems to elude highly intellectual big government elitists like Scalia.....
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