Rebuttal: The Legalities of Gun Control

by Jonathan Wallace

Here is my rebuttal to John's law message.

I will keep my rebuttal short because John in effect agrees with me that the scope of the Second Amendment as currently interpreted by our highest courts is very limited. He acknowledges that his focus is the "ought", not the "is", and turns to natural law to describe an underpinning for gun rights. I think this discussion takes us into the morality segment of our debate, and I'll reserve comment until we get there.

John disagrees with my interpretation of U.S. v. Miller. However, the Supreme Court hasn't taken up any of the cases which have occurred since then, nor has NRA or anyone else aggressively sought to get an appropriate controversy before the Court. If in fact the Court in Miller left the door open for factual evidence that sawed off shotguns, or "assault rifles" (yes, I'm aware of the problems of definition),or anything else are appropriate militia weapons, therefore supporting individual ownership of these weapons, why haven't Second Amendment advocates tried to pass through this door? The answer: because everyone knows that today's Supreme Court will not give a definition of the Second Amendment close to the "ought" that you seek. I would again invite John to comment on whether NRA ever relies on the Second Amendment (as opposed to vaguness, the Commerce Clause, state constitutions, etc.) when bringing litigation. If not, why not? And if John's slate wins the board elections, will this answer change?

I'd like to close by complimenting John on a well-written and highly interesting response. Thanks also for your courteous treatment of someone with whom you highly disagree. I'm enjoying this debate and trust you are too.