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Old 01-16-2013, 10:12 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
10,581 posts, read 9,780,810 times
Reputation: 4174

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The U.S. Supreme Court has released a ruling saying that military-style weapons are protected by the 2nd amendment, and thus the right of ordinary citizens to "keep and bear" them cannot be taken away or restricted.

The ruling came from a surprise case that came directly from a Federal District Court in Arkansas, without travelling the "usual" route through a Federal Court of Appeals first.

This clearly indicates that so-called "assault rifles", even though misnamed by most politicians and media, are protected by the 2nd due to the very features that such people fear: Bayonet lugs, flash suppressors, folding stocks etc. that make them appear similar to weapons used by the military. And of course, the ruling also means that genuine military weapons such as M-16s and AK-47s that can fire continuously like a machine gun, are also protected, and cannot be restricted by Federal, State, or local legislation.

In their Opinion of the Court, the Justices indicated that weapons which are "part of the ordinary military equipment" came under the protection of the 2nd amendment, even in civilian hands, as well as a gun whose "use could contribute to the common defense."

The ruling was especially surprising in light of the fact that the entire Defense team was absent from the Supreme Court trial during the proceedings. Apparently the defendant himself, Jack Miller, the owner of the gun in question, could not be found by his lawyer to prepare a defense. The lawyer decided that since he could not prepare an adequate defense without any consultation or information from Miller, and that since he was unlikely to receive any pay for the massive effort needed to prepare a Supreme Court case, he would not attend the hearings nor submit any briefs to the Court.

This left the Government prosecution team with an unexpected windfall. The prosecution decided to enter into the record a number of demonstrably false statements, including:

(a) Only weapons commonly used by the armed services, were protected by the 2nd amendment. This is clearly false, since the 2nd merely mentions militias as a reason why the right to keep and bear arms cannot be infringed, not as a governing condition of such a right.

(b) The weapon owned by defendant Miller (a short-barrelled shotgun) was not a weapon in use by military forces. This is also demonstrably false, since such weapons were commonly used by both sides in recent major wars, and were known as "trench guns".

(c) Membership in a militia was necessary for a person to have the right to keep an bear arms. This is, of course, false for the reasons given above. More recent cases have positively stated that the right is an individual right, and is not based on a citizen's membership in any military organization.

But since no one stood up for the Defense to point out the falsehood of the Government's statements, the Justices rubber-stamped most of them into an Opinion.

The Opinion of the Court is loaded with phrases indicating the Justices' frustration over not hearing any arguments from the Defense. "In the absence of any evidence tending to show that...", and "...we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees...", and "...it is not withing judicial notice that...". This is as close as any Justice has ever gotten to protesting the complete lack of counterarguments to the Prosecution's falsehoods.

But the trial had to go on, as scheduled. And even with the lopsided "evidence" presented, the Justices were still able to salvage a ruling that civilian ownership and usage of military and military-style weapons, at least, enjoyed the protection of the 2nd amendment.

Defendant Miller was found later, dead in a stream bed, with four pistol bullets in his chest.

As in all Supreme Court cases, this ruling will remain valid and in force without limit, unless a subsequent Supreme Court case overrules or reverses it. To date, no such case has done that, except DC v. Heller which ruled in 2008 that the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, not contingent on military membership.

The case was US v. Miller (307 U.S. 174), ruling delivered on May 15, 1939. It remains valid to this day.

United States v. Miller - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

United States v. Miller, 307 U.S. 174 (1939)

Last edited by Little-Acorn; 01-16-2013 at 10:57 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:20 AM
 
4,738 posts, read 4,433,334 times
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The list of things the supreme court got wrong, is pretty high.. . .and can be fixed later, when real leaders show up.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:23 AM
 
15,706 posts, read 11,770,017 times
Reputation: 7020
I'm not sure you're reading the case right. The ruling in Miller said there was no violation of the 2nd Amendment for restricting firearms.

"In the absence of any evidence tending to show that possession or use of a 'shotgun having a barrel of less than eighteen inches in length' at this time has some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia, we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear such an instrument."

And Miller had no bearing on whether the 2nd Amendment applied to individuals. It exclusively dealt with the issue of weapon type, and was not a thorough examination of the Second Amendment.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:23 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
10,581 posts, read 9,780,810 times
Reputation: 4174
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisFromChicago View Post
The list of things the supreme court got wrong, is pretty high.. . .and can be fixed later, when real leaders show up.
Yep. An example mentioned here, is their ruling that the 2nd applied only to people actively in a militia. A real leader finally showed up (Antonin Scalia), and wrote in 2008 that it wasn't so. The right to Keep and bear arms is an individual right.

More to come.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:24 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
31,767 posts, read 28,810,847 times
Reputation: 12341
Does that also mean that the weaponry a person may desire, must originate from regulated manufacturing facilities, to prevent people from making their own?
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Del Rio, TN
39,865 posts, read 26,492,827 times
Reputation: 25764
In the Miller case the portion of the NFA of 1934 was allowed a pass, precisely because the weapon in question (a short barreled shotgun) did NOT have a specific purpose as a military weapon. Since there was no defense attorny present (nor defendant) to point out that the military did in fact use shotguns, the arguement was allowed and the law stood.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:25 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
10,581 posts, read 9,780,810 times
Reputation: 4174
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiyero View Post
I'm not sure you're reading the case right. The ruling in Miller said there was no violation of the 2nd Amendment for restricting firearms.

"In the absence of any evidence tending to show that possession or use of a 'shotgun having a barrel of less than eighteen inches in length' at this time has some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia, we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear such an instrument."
And it stated that this was because the justices (mistakenly) thought that Miller's short-barrelled shotgun was not a type of weapon commonly used in the military.

As pointed out, such weapons actually were used, by troops on both side, in the most recent major war, World War I.

And the reason that mattered, was because they were ruling that weapons that WERE used in the military, were protected for civilian use under the 2nd amendment.

I'm not the one who "isn't reading the case right".
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:26 AM
 
691 posts, read 771,178 times
Reputation: 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little-Acorn View Post
The U.S. Supreme Court has released a ruling saying that military-style weapons are protected by the 2nd amendment, and thus the right of ordinary citizens to "keep and bear" them cannot be taken away or restricted.

The ruling came from a surprise case that came directly from a Federal District Court in Arkansas, without travelling the "usual" route through a Federal Court of Appeals first.

This clearly indicates that so-called "assault rifles", even though misnamed by most politicians and media, are protected by the 2nd due to the very features that such people fear: Bayonet lugs, flash suppressors, folding stocks etc. that make them appear similar to weapons used by the military. And of course, the ruling also means that genuine military weapons such as M-16s and AK-47s that can fire continuously like a machine gun, are also protected, and cannot be restricted by Federal, State, or local legislation.

In their Opinion of the Court, the Justices indicated that weapons which are "part of the ordinary military equipment" came under the protection of the 2nd amendment, even in civilian hands, as well as a gun whose "use could contribute to the common defense."

The ruling was especially surprising in light of the fact that the entire Defense team was absent from the Supreme Court trial during the proceedings. Apparently the defendant himself, Jack Miller, the owner of the gun in question, could not be found by his lawyer to prepare a defense. The lawyer decided that since he could not prepare an adequate defense without any consultation or information from Miller, and that since he was unlikely to receive any pay for the massive effort needed to prepare a Supreme Court case, he would not attend the hearings nor submit any briefs to the Court.

This left the Government prosecution team with an unexpected windfall. The prosecution decided to enter into the record a number of demonstrably false statements, including:

(a) Only weapons commonly used by the armed services, were protected by the 2nd amendment. This is clearly false, since the 2nd merely mentions militias as a reason why the right to keep and bear arms cannot be infringed, not as a governing condition of such a right.

(b) The weapon owned by defendant Miller (a short-barrelled shotgun) was not a weapon in use by military forces. This is also demonstrably false, since such weapons were commonly used by both sides in recent major wars, and were known as "trench guns".

(c) Membership in a militia was necessary for a person to have the right to keep an bear arms. This is, of course, false for the reasons given above. More recent cases have positively stated that the right is and individual right, and is not based on a citizen's membership in any military organization.

But since no one stood up for the Defense to point out the falsehood of the Government's statements, the Justices rubber-stamped most of them into an Opinion.

The Opinion of the Court is loaded with phrases indicating the Justices' frustration over not hearing any arguments from the Defense. "In the absence of any evidence tending to show that...", and "...we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees...", and "...it is not withing judicial notice that...". This is as close as any Justice has ever gotten to protesting the complete lack of counterarguments to the Prosecution's falsehoods.

But the trial had to go on, as scheduled. And even with the lopsided "evidence" presented, the Justices were still able to salvage a ruling that civilian ownership and usage of military and military-style weapons, at least, enjoyed the protection of the 2nd amendment.

Defendant Miller was found later, dead in a stream bed, with four pistol bullets in his chest.

As in all Supreme Court cases, this ruling will remain valid and in force without limit, unless a subsequent Supreme Court case overrules or reverses it. To date, no such case has done that, except DC v. Heller which ruled in 2008 that the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, not contingent on military membership.

The case was US v. Miller (307 U.S. 174), ruling delivered on May 15, 1939. It remains valid to this day.

United States v. Miller - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

United States v. Miller, 307 U.S. 174 (1939)

Anyone remember Vince Foster?
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:28 AM
 
691 posts, read 771,178 times
Reputation: 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little-Acorn View Post
And it stated that this was because the justices (mistakenly) thought that Miller's short-barrelled shotgun was not a type of weapon commonly used in the military.

As pointed out, such weapons actually were used, by troops on both side, in the most recent major war, World War I.

And the reason that mattered, was because they were ruling that weapons that WERE used in the military, were protected for civilian use under the 2nd amendment.

I'm not the one who "isn't reading the case right".

Exactly. Sawed off shotguns were used by troops in Vietnam to clear out tunnels.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:28 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
10,581 posts, read 9,780,810 times
Reputation: 4174
Quote:
Originally Posted by EinsteinsGhost View Post
Does that also mean that the weaponry a person may desire, must originate from regulated manufacturing facilities, to prevent people from making their own?
Do I hear the sound of a newly-caught fish, flopping desperately around on the dock, trying to find water that isn't there?

Why yes, I believe I do.
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