Friday, April 02, 2004

A decision was made in Parker v D.C.: the 2nd amendment does not guarantee an individual right to own or possess arms unless it is directly related to service in a state militia, therefore D.C.'s firearms laws are valid.

Again we see a court take U.S. v. Miller & misinterpret it. Then they cite 60+ years of circuit court decisions that also misinterpret Miller. & on top of that they claim that since the Supreme Court has not reviewed Miller or any direct 2nd amendment cases since Miller that the highest court in the land must approve of the interpretation of Miller.

They do spend a little time downplaying the 5th Circuit's decision in U.S. v. Emerson. Well downplaying isn't the proper description: they explain why they feel Emerson was an incorrect decision based on precedent as well as reasoning. I thought that was interesting since Emerson is the only circuit court decision issued recently that would support an individual as opposed to a collective right. & perhaps even more so because the Emerson decision was a 5th circuit matter: not binding on any other circuit. Yet the D.C. court went to some trouble to argue against it.

The court explained in some depth that a person had to be sanctioned by the state to qualify as a member of a militia. They reasoned that a militia must be trained & organized by the state & subsequently that enrollment in such a militia is the only means of claiming to be part of the militia. In other words, they suggest that unless you are actually on a roll of a state's militia then you're not a member of the militia. This despite the evidence presented in Miller that the militia was composed of all capable people within certain a certain age frame.

But the D.C. court held that since the plaintiffs raised no argument that they were members of a militia that they had no claim under the 2nd amendment & ruled against them.

Kevin of The Smallest Minority has a post up entitled "Game Over, Man. Game Over." that has more than a little relevance to the situation with the courts generally.

Parker is further proof that we have no redress in the courts. The only thing that could alter my view of that would be for the Supreme Court to hear & reverse the findings in Parker or a similar 2nd amendment case, but they've been ducking the issue since 1939 & I doubt they'll grow a conscience & courage at the same time.

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