I'm not sure if I'd say it doesn't affect most of us. Mainly the first wave of effect is that it nullifies laws that cities set down over gun control that exceed state restrictions. For example, my city and most of Cleveland 'burbs and cities have laws against automatic assault rifles. Those became unconstitutional yesterday because Ohio does not have such laws.
You're right however that this doesn't create dramatic effect. The much more interesting ruling was on the Exxon case two days ago. That could be the unraveling of personal injury as we know it.
BTW - this ruling is considered a major victory for the right wing from a court that has failed to deliver on a lot of assumed promises for them. I'm just waiting for my government to just break down and issue everyone a 9mm with their income tax check.
If we got 9mm's with our tax checks, we could kill the child rapists that the government won't. Everyone wins!
PS - many folks are claiming this as a HUGE victory. Individual rights win the day! (They may be right, they may be wrong...but either way, they're happy.)
That's pretty much true. Up with down with big government!
This court has been pretty hardline about eye for an eye.
While I haven't read the opinions in the case (which are apparently 150+ pages), the NYT tells me that Scalia's opinion still finds possession of "dangerous and unusual" weapons to be illegal, and doesn't mention whether assault weapons fall into that category or not. So that kind of specific ban probably won't be immediately overturned.
The federal assault weapon ban was pretty widely viewed as dumb, as it was targeted as weapons that looked scary in movies but weren't functionally much different from unbanned weapons. Ban was a strange word for it, too, because it just banned sale of new ones, making existing ones still entirely legal but increasingly expensive. The basic idea was to keep them away from poor people, but it's hard for a politician to come out and say that. Still, when Senator Feinstein was trying to get it renewed, she claimed it was a success because it was driving up prices.
You might think it's referring to things like deer hunting cannons
, but those aren't affected by the National Firearms Act because they're smoothbore muzzleloaders. Even things that are covered by that (machine guns and such) aren't illegal, they just require nontrivial paperwork. I know people that collect machine guns, entirely legally, they just can't collect new ones. Again, the federal restrictions weren't designed to make them illegal, just to keep them away from poor people.
It probably refers to the really exotic stuff like antitank rockets, but I haven't read enough to know.
LJ fucked with that comment, in that it is a response to the first comment by nathan_lounge
, rather than a stand alone comment.
I'm kinda confused why you bought up the federal ban, given that it is defunct and not really applicable to whether or not Cleveland et all is able to keep a similar ban in place.
I oversimplified when stating that machine guns are flat illegal. But all indications are that owning one is still considered a privilege-and a rather exclusive one at that-and not a right. And that means there is still room for the states and cities to claim that they have the power to invoke similar prohibitions on the sale of other types of weapons.
I'm more pointing to the way gun control laws are political posturing and aren't really designed to keep people safe. It's security theater, same as the airport. The issue I'm commenting on isn't "Is it legal for Cleveland to have this law" it's "Does it do anything other than make ignorant people feel good." I don't know the Cleveland law, but I was guessing that it was similar to the federal one, which was useless for anything other than making guns that look like movie props more expensive.
Reading about the history of gun bans is actually kind of interesting. In United States v. Miller, the previous big gun case, the government argued that the second amendment only allowed people to own military weapons, not non-military ones. I doubt you'll see that same argument put forward this time around, but "civilians are only allowed to own military combat weapons, not hunting weapons" would certainly make for some lively elections. Not entirely implausible, either, as there is still a government agency responsible for selling surplus rifles to the public.http://www.odcmp.com/about_us.htm
Oh! Ok, yes, you're right, there is always going to be large amount of political posturing around this issue, which makes sense given America's love/hate relationship with it's guns.
Whether or not the laws are actually effective or not isn't something I feel informed enough to comment on, and for a Supreme Court opinion should be irrelevent anyway.
Nearly all small munitions that I'm aware of don't fall into that catagory less home-made trinkets and probably some things I'd never even think of. The important part of the whole opinion (I think) are the lines carefully carving national, state, and local rights out. This will be one of those opinions everyone has to read in con law classes now.
All of the news reports- and the statements now coming out of city offices in DC and Chicago- that I have read seem to be indicating to me that there are not those kind of specific guidelines for delineation of powers and responsibilities. Does the opinion itself say any different?
But hey, it's another excellent reason not to take a con law class.
Have you seen Mayor Fenty's response to this? It boils down to that he's unhappy with the court, but just because the court has ruled people may keep hand guns in their homes for self defense doesn't make hand guns on the street legal. So instead of banning all handguns, they'll ban carrying handguns outside of a house, and confiscate them if they come across them outside of a house.
In some ways, it was a broad decision (owning a gun is a personal right, not a collective right), but in some ways it was a very narrow decision (people may not be denied a hand gun in their home for self defense). What this may impact most is trigger lock laws, since the opinion struck down the dismantle/trigger lock requirement for rifles/shotguns in homes.
Yup. As I said, this wasn't the knockout punch for gun control that some people believe it was.
The most interesting thing imho is that the even though in this instance it was upheld as a personal right the actual statement is that it is a state right to regulate- i would not be surprised if states are able to use this opinion to more strictly regulate... that being said the Exxon case is absolutely the case that will have greater impact. the biggest deterent to trails for companies has been the fear that juries will ruin their business with punative damages- personal injury will probably never be the same.
Hmmm...more guns and less personal injury damages...Maybe Scalia is about to go settle some bizne33...