Brady Campaign concedes the battle over the Second Amendment, but claims this will help it win the war

I have heard this argument before. Without the fear that gun control will be used to ban guns, gun control advocates think that they can have all sorts of regulations without generating much fear. Possibly. Obviously the Supreme Court would throw out a tax on newspapers as violating the first amendment. Where will they draw the line on the Second Amendment? I would like to think that it won't change the debate if the debate is framed as: who will gun control primarily disarm and the issue of self-defense.

The ABC piece on what the Brady Campaign hopes will happen is here:

The nation's leading gun control group filed a "friend of the court" brief back in January defending the gun ban in Washington, D.C. But with the Supreme Court poised to hand down a potentially landmark decision in the case, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence fully expects to lose.

"We've lost the battle on what the Second Amendment means," campaign president Paul Helmke told ABC News. "Seventy-five percent of the public thinks it's an individual right. Why are we arguing a theory anymore? We are concerned about what we can do practically."

While the Brady Campaign is waving the white flag in the long-running debate on whether the Second Amendment protects an individual's right to bear arms or merely a state's right to assemble a militia, it is hoping that losing the "legal battle" will eventually lead to gun control advocates winning the "political war."

"We're expecting D.C. to lose the case," Helmke said. "But this could be good from the standpoint of the political-legislative side."

The D.C. ban prohibits residents from keeping handguns inside their homes and requires that lawfully registered guns, such as shotguns, be locked and unloaded when kept at home.

If the Supreme Court strikes down the D.C. gun ban, the Brady Campaign is hoping that it will reorient gun control groups around more limited measures that will be harder to cast as infringements of the Second Amendment.

"The NRA [National Rifle Association] won't have this fear factor," Helmke said.

Brady Campaign Attorney Dennis Henigan said there are multiple gun control measures that would not run afoul of a Supreme Court decision striking down the D.C. gun ban. . . . .

I don't think that the Brady Campaign is correct on the next point. Illinois does have a "safe storage" law, which while it is not as restrictive as DC's, still requires that people lock up their gun. The Brady Campaign is also hoping that the Court says a handgun ban is fine as long as you have some other type of gun. I hope that they are also wrong on that point.

Although the Brady Campaign expects the Chicago ordinance to be challenged, it thinks that it may survive because it does not have the restrictions on long guns like the ones found in Washington, D.C.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ubelievable... these people are still convinced that gun control works, and that keeping your guns locked somehow benefit public safety. I would ask them if they keep their toolbox locked up as well, or maybe their kitchen knives... How are you supposed to defend yourself? Politely asking the intruder to please wait while you get your guns from your safe and load them? Why not offer him a coffee in the meanwhile...

6/14/2008 5:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see it as exactly the opposite:

Now that the nation's leading gun control group has stood before the Supreme Court and argued that individuals have absolutely no right to firearms ownership of any kind, it ought to be clear to everyone what the end-game is.

6/15/2008 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But this could be good from the standpoint of the political-legislative side."

No. Since 75% of the public already supports the idea of an individual right, and political backlash tends to be proportional to public outrage; I don't see any political backlash on the horizon if the Supreme Court backs the individual right view.
I do hope that the Supreme Court doesn't allow "reasonable restrictions", since to some people, any and all restrictions are "reasonable".

6/15/2008 8:52 PM  

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