March 20th, 2008

Heller's Lawyer Speaks Out on the Second Amendment

In a commentary appearing in the Boston Globe and Washington Times, Robert A. Levy, one of the lawyers for Dick Heller, explains the key issues in the landmark D.C. v. Heller Case. We recommend you read Levy’s essay, offered on the CATO Institute website.

CLICK HERE to read Levy Commentary.

Levy explains how, if the Supreme Court finds that the Second Amendment accords an individual right to ALL citizens, then restrictions on that right should be subject to “strict scrutiny” under established principles of Constitutional law. Levy notes that, if the High Court accepts the District Columbia’s view of the Second Amendment, then this would effectively render the Second Amendment a “dead letter”. Based the comments of the Justices during the oral arguments on March 18, we believe at least a majority of the Supreme Court is not willing to go that far. However, Levy warns:

“If D.C.’s outright ban on all handguns, in all homes, at all times, for all purposes, is determined by the court to pass muster, it will mean the Supreme Court intends to rubberstamp just about any regulation a legislature can dream up — no matter whether the government has offered any justification at all, much less a justification that would survive strict scrutiny. That would, in effect, excise the Second Amendment from the Constitution. A right that cannot be enforced is no right at all.

At root, the Heller case is simple. It’s about self-defense: individuals living in a dangerous community who want to protect themselves in their own homes when necessary. The Second Amendment to the Constitution was intended to safeguard that right. Banning handguns outright is unconstitutional.”

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