[Vision2020] A path to gun safety

Moscow Cares moscowcares at moscow.com
Fri Jun 24 04:42:14 PDT 2016

Courtesy of today's (June 24, 2016) Moscow-Pullman Daily News with special thanks to Shirley Ringo.

Letter: A path to gun safety
As individual justices on the U.S. Supreme Court change, along with the prevailing attitudes in the country, the nature of Court decisions varies. Some are revisited with different results. An example is Brown v. Board of Education, where the Court declared laws establishing separate public schools for black and white students unconstitutional. Hence the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson, allowing segregation in schools, was overturned.
It is now time for the Court to revisit the intent of the Second Amendment: "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."
Does this say that the individual has a constitutional right to keep and bear arms, prohibiting regulation related to this individual right? Alternatively, did the framers of this amendment just intend to protect the states' rights to self-defense? Legal scholars have debated the question of whether the framing of the Second Amendment was directed to the individual or to the collective right of the state.
In 1939, the Supreme Court supported the "collective rights" interpretation. That stood until 2008, when the Court ruled (5-4) in District of Columbia vs. Heller that the Second Amendment extends gun ownership rights to individuals. By a razor-thin margin the 2008 Court made an enormous change in the application of the Second Amendment.
The consequences of this unfortunate decision have been tragic. There are certain weapons intended for warfare - the states' rights to self defense. An individual's needs do not require such weapons, despite the NRA political leaders' opinion that we would be safer if everyone carried an AK-47. I hope this matter once again comes before the Supreme Court. Until then, we must find a legislative path to gun safety. Too many lives have been lost.
Shirley Ringo

"Gun Porn" by Jeanne McHale

Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .

"Moscow Cares" 
Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho

"There's room at the top they are telling you still.
But first you must learn how to smile as you kill,
If you want to be like the folks on the hill."

- John Lennon
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