The United States Supreme Court has made some good decisions in 2015. They issued a blow to housing discrimination proponents, they upheld Obamacare’s subsidies, and they made gay marriage the law of the land.
Now they’ve ruled by default, or in this case, chosen not to overturn Illinois’ assault weapons ban. This is a big SCREW YOU to the NRA and their crony lobbyists.
The justices in the Seventh Court of Appeals said in their ruling that “assault weapons with large-capacity magazines can fire more shots, faster, and thus can be more dangerous in the aggregate. Why else are they the weapons of choice in mass shootings?”
Luckily the Supreme Court agreed, as it did in 2008. Only Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia wished to review the law, falling two short of the necessary four to hear a case. But their minds were made up. Writing the dissent for why the Court should hear the case, Thomas said it was up to the Court to stop the states “from relegating the Second Amendment to a second-class right.”
The 2013 law which was passed in Highland Park, Illinois banned the sale, purchase, or possession of semi-automatic weapons, commonly referred to as assault rifles, which hold more than ten rounds in a single magazine. Like the assault weapons ban from 1994, the Highland Park bill included specific rifles, including such as the AR-15 and AK-47 styles. The Illinois State Rifle Association filed the lawsuit, saying the AR-15 was one of the best-selling guns nation wide. Again, it was about profits.
Similar cases were upheld at 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals from New York and Connecticut, both states that responded to the tragedy at Sandy Hook in December 2012.
In response to the tragedy in San Bernardino, in which the Republicans do what they always do – nothing – the Supreme Court (which is majority conservative) decided to act.
Thank you Justices Ginsburg, Alito, Breyer, Kagan, Roberts, Sotomayor and Kennedy.
Featured image via Wikipedia