I’m always torn between the old saying that if guns are prohibited then only the criminals will be armed and the reality that the more guns we have in our society the more shootings there will be – so guns should be banned or at least discouraged.
Today the U.S. Supreme Court came down firmly on the side of the right of Americans to own firearms, and to keep them handy for self-defense.
The case was all about Washington DC, where guns have been banned for 32 years.
Yet in 2006 that city was ranked #7 in murder rate, #10 in robberies and #13 in the overall violent crime rate in the entire USA.
Here is the big test: now that DC residents are allowed to own and carry handguns legally, will the rate of violence increase or drop off the charts as happened in a few states that adopted “concealed carry” laws for good citizens?
Here you go… hot off the press, er… web…
Supreme Court Says Americans Have Right To Guns
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Americans have a right to own guns for self-defense in their homes, the justices’ first major pronouncement on gun rights in U.S. history.
The court’s 5-4 ruling struck down the District of Columbia’s 32-year-old ban on handguns as incompatible with gun rights under the Second Amendment. The decision went further than even the Bush administration wanted, but probably leaves most firearms restrictions intact.
The court had not conclusively interpreted the Second Amendment since its ratification in 1791. The amendment reads: “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.”
The basic issue for the justices was whether the amendment protects an individual’s right to own guns no matter what, or whether that right is somehow tied to service in a state militia.
Writing for the majority, Justice Antonin Scalia said that an individual right to bear arms is supported by “the historical narrative” both before and after the Second Amendment was adopted.
The Constitution does not permit “the absolute prohibition of handguns held and used for self-defense in the home,” Scalia said. The court also struck down Washington’s requirement that firearms be equipped with trigger locks or kept disassembled, but left intact the licensing of guns…
… continue reading this article at Associated Press (link here)