Bravo, Supreme Court. Intellectually, historically, legally, there was only one way they could have ruled: in favor of the individual right to bear arms over some amorphous-collective-militia.
Any student (including BYU’s American Heritage students, with whom we, as former TA, are well acquainted) of the Constitution knows that the Bill of Rights were written to guarantee the rights of the individual against incursions from the government. The fear when writing the Bill of Rights was that government would assume it could do anything not specifically prohibited by the Bill of Rights.
But some Founders, rather than worrying about the tale (Bill of Rights) wagging the dog (Constitutionally outlined powers), anticipated correctly the exponential growth of government and knew that citizen’s individual rights would need to be protected. Thus, the “afterthought” of the first ten Amendments to the Constitution–the Bill of Rights.
So, summary: the Bill of Rights were written to protect the rights of the indivudal–the 2nd Amendment is no different to all the rest. Fortunately, the anti-2nd Amendment judicial activism du jour did not persuade swing-voter Anthony Kennedy.
Score one for Constitutional originalism.
*UPDATE 19 March 1:43am: The Left Fires a Counter-Volley, Meet the NRA’s little known, highly influential opponents (subscription required, email us if you’d like to receive a digital copy of the article).
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