COLORADO GUN GROUPS HELP IN WIN FOR SECOND AMENDMENT
June 28, 2010 - For Immediate Release
DENVER, CO. Two Colorado gun-owner groups today applauded the 5-4 ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States that the Second Amendment right to “keep and bear arms” applies against the States via the Fourteenth Amendment. Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) and the National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR), both Colorado corporations, had filed a friend of the court brief arguing that the Supreme Court’s earlier holdings that the Second Amendment applies only to the federal government were overturned by the Supreme Court’s 2008 ruling against Washington, D.C. RMGO, Colorado’s largest state-based gun lobby, is dedicated solely to protecting the natural right to keep and bear arms by way of grass-roots and professional lobbying; NAGR assists state-based gun-rights organizations by providing information and lobbying support nationally and in Washington, D.C. In their amici curiae brief, they argued that westerners believe that gun rights are a fundamental liberty that has always applied to the States.
“We are delighted with today’s ruling, not only because it rejects the arguments by States that they made deny those rights, but also because the Court cited to our brief in its ruling,” said William Perry Pendley of Mountain States Legal Foundation (MSLF), which represents the groups.
The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides, “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.” In 2008, in District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment protects the individual’s right to keep and bear arms for self-defense by striking down a Washington, D.C., law because the law banned handgun possession and required other firearms to be kept locked and unloaded. (MSLF filed a friend of the Court brief in that case on behalf of the would-be gun owners.) Although the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment protects the individual’s right to keep and bear arms for self-defense, it also has ruled that the Second Amendment applies only to the Federal government and is not incorporated against the States by way of the Fourteenth Amendment; however, Heller casts grave doubt on the continuing validity of the Court’s 19th-century rulings.
Recently, the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second and Seventh Circuits refused to use Heller to apply the Second Amendment to States. In April 2009, would-be gun owners in Chicago sought Supreme Court review after the Seventh Circuit refused to apply the Second Amendment to Illinois via the Fourteenth Amendment. On September 30, 2009, the Supreme Court agreed to review the Seventh Circuit’s ruling.
Mountain States Legal Foundation, created in 1977, is a nonprofit, public interest law firm dedicated to individual liberty, the right to own and use property, limited and ethical government, and the free enterprise system. Its offices are in suburban Denver, Colorado.
McDonald v. City of Chicago, No. 08-1521 (U.S. Supreme Court)
Mountain States Legal Foundation (MSLF) is a nonprofit,
public interest legal foundation dedicated to individual liberty, the right
to own and use property, limited and ethical government, and economic freedom. It is an Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3) entity
incorporated in the State of Colorado. Csontributions
to Mountain States Legal Foundation are tax deductible.
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