Young people should be demanding a repeal of the Second Amendment, a former U.S. Supreme Court Justice says.
“[T]he demonstrators should seek more effective and more lasting reform,” John Paul Stevens wrote of large crowds of gun-control protestors in a Tuesday New York Times op-ed. “They should demand a repeal of the Second Amendment.”
“… That simple but dramatic action would move Saturday’s marchers closer to their objective than any other possible reform,” Stevens wrote. “It would eliminate the only legal rule that protects sellers of firearms in the United States — unlike every other market in the world.
“It would make our schoolchildren safer than they have been since 2008 and honor the memories of the many, indeed far too many, victims of recent gun violence,” Stevens claimed.
Stevens believes repeal is the only way to overturn the Supreme Courts’ Heller Decision, which found the Second Amendment granted an individual right to bear arms. Stevens was among the four justices who dissented in the Heller case in 2008.
“Overturning that decision via a constitutional amendment to get rid of the Second Amendment would be simple and would do more to weaken the NRA’s ability to stymie legislative debate and block constructive gun control legislation than any other available option,” Stevens wrote.
The history of interpretation of the Second Amendment, Stevens argued, does not support an individual right to own guns.
“For over 200 years after the adoption of the Second Amendment, it was uniformly understood as not placing any limit on either federal or state authority to enact gun-control legislation,” Stevens wrote. “In 1939 the Supreme Court unanimously held that Congress could prohibit the possession of a sawed-off shotgun because that weapon had no reasonable relation to the preservation or efficiency of a “well-regulated militia.’”
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