06 May 2007

Gun Rights Evolve

There has long been criticism from the right about judicial activism. Wikipedia defines it as:

Judicial Activism is a term used by political scholars to describe a tendency by judges to consider outcomes, attitudinal preferences, and other public policy issues in interpreting applicable existing law. Formally, judicial activism is considered the opposite of judicial restraint, but it is also used pejoratively to denote judges who are perceived to endorse a particular agenda.

There is a change in the way that some legal scholars, and as a result, some judges see gun rights. Some say that this change in viewpoint is evidence of judicial activism, as it is evidence of change in legal precedent established over decades. I disagree with that interpretation (legal scholar that I am) on the grounds that the precedent was wrongly conceived to begin with. Overturning existing precedent based on what is deemed the intent of the Constitution's framers is an originalist viewpoint, and that is the camp that I often side with.

The point of this post is to examine an article in the New York Times that discussed the role of liberal law experts in recent gun cases:

In March, for the first time in the nation’s history, a federal appeals court struck down a gun control law on Second Amendment grounds. Only a few decades ago, the decision would have been unimaginable.
There used to be an almost complete scholarly and judicial consensus that the Second Amendment protects only a collective right of the states to maintain militias. That consensus no longer exists — thanks largely to the work over the last 20 years of several leading liberal law professors, who have come to embrace the view that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to own guns.

Follow the link for more.

Finally, a note on the French Presidential elections: I'm glad to see that conservative candidate Nicolas Sarkozy won the election, defeating the socialist candidate Segolene Royal. Despite Sarkozy's adherence to the European obsession with climate change, this can only improve U.S.-Franco relations, and that is a good thing as we continue the difficult War on Terror.


Anonymous said...

But I can't believe a socialist (Royal) got 47% of the vote! Only in France. Did you read her platform? Sheer idiocy. Like she has never taken an econ class. Or ever actually thought anything through.

Jlowryjr said...

Agreed. She is a total flake, and demonstrated as much in their most recent debate. Full of liberal vagueness.