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Reading through it, already found a few bits that made me laugh:

On June 11, 2008, Respondent [City of Chicago] enacted a 120-day
amnesty period allowing the re-registration of firearms
whose registration had lapsed. The amnesty
ordinance was sponsored by a city alderman who had
neglected to timely re-register his firearms. App. 53.
Whoops. Must be nice to have that connection when you neglect to follow the law that you impose on the rest of us.....
 

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Speaking of the 14th amendment, has anybody else ever wondered how permit systems like New York or California are compatible with the equal protection clause?

Depending on which county in NYS you reside in you may be able to easily receive an unrestricted permit (Monroe/Delaware/Cortland), receive one with a little bit of effort (Broome) or find it next to impossible to receive one (Onondaga). I understand that California has a similiar system -- in the urban areas it's virtually impossible to get a CCL but in some of the rural counties they are routinely handed out.

I seem to recall that one of the points in Bush v. Gore was the fact that the different counties in Flordia had different standards for judging ballots during the recount. Seven justices (including two of the liberals, Souter and Breyer) found that this was a violation of the 14th amendment's equal protection clause. Wouldn't it follow that a pistol permit system that varies from county to county is also an equal protection violation? Why should I have less rights as a resident of New York if I'm unlucky enough to reside in Syracuse or New York City as opposed to Rochester or Binghamton?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't get why this case is happening in the first place. By that I mean the first 10 amendments were incorporated into the states, including the second amendment. Now a court case asking if the 2nd amendment is incorporated.

What court case is it that set some narrow minded interpretation of the 14th amendment? I'd like to read about it a little.
 

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The first ten amendments weren't incorporated against the states. SCOTUS has at times ruled that some of them don't apply to the states, in spite of the plain language of the 14th amendment. These would include the 5th amendment right to indictment before a grand jury and the 7th amendment right to a jury trial in civil cases.

In other cases, SCOTUS has copped out of ruling on whether or not the right is incorporated because of procedural issues. Murphy v. Hunt comes to mind. SCOTUS was asked to decide whether or not the 8th amendment (prohibition of excessive bail and/or fines) applied to the states. By the time the case reached them the petitioner had been convicted in state court and SCOTUS declined to rule on the broader consitutional issue because bail was a moot point for him once he was convicted.

SCOTUS has never ruled one way or another on whether the 2nd amendment applies to the states. That's part of what this suit is attempting to accomplish. The other thing they'd like to accomplish is to give some real teeth to the "privileges and immunities" clause. That clause was neutered by the Slaughter-House cases in 1873. If that hadn't happened it's probable that the entirety of the Bill of Rights would have been held to apply to the states a long time ago and we would never have seen this process of selective incorporation wherein some rights are deemed to apply to the states but others are not.

Interestingly enough, this approach has brought a few liberal organizations and editorial pages on board. There was a pretty good op-ed in one of the liberal papers (I want to say the Los Angeles Times but I'm not entirely sure) about it a few months ago. They aren't real big fans of gun ownership but they hate the idea that SCOTUS has cherry picked which rights matter and want to see the privileges and immunity clause restored to it's original intent. If it hadn't been defanged in 1873 it's probable that Jim Crow would never have been allowed to happen. Mention that fact and you might just sway a few of your liberal friends to our cause.
 

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Found that article I previously mentioned. It was in the LA Times and was featured in this month's America's 1st Freedom magazine. Some highlights:

If you support measures to reduce gun violence, as this page does, it's tempting to hope that the court will rule that states aren't bound by the 2nd Amendment. The problem is that allowing states (and cities) to ignore this part of the Bill of Rights could undermine the requirement that they abide by others.
In the Chicago case, the justices are considering whether the 2nd Amendment should be applied to the states by either the 14th Amendment's due process clause (which applies to "persons") or its privileges and immunities clause (which protects only citizens). The court should say yes, even as it reaffirms its assurance in its 2008 decision that government may still impose reasonable restrictions on the right to bear arms.

This is no time for the court to start picking and choosing when it comes to the Bill of Rights.
As I said, it's a pretty beautiful argument they've crafted in the Chicago case. Even most liberals (the intellectually honest ones anyway) can't find fault with it. It will be interesting to see what the final breakdown is when SCOTUS rules on it. I'd like to imagine that it won't be a 5-4 ruling. If you rule against this then you effectively rule against every other ruling that has extended Constitutional protections to the states.

Edit: Should this thread be in the 'Law & Politics' section instead of 'General Firearms'? I had to do a search in order to find it when I wanted to post this update.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Damn jerks posting topics in the wrong section :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
3/2/2010. Opening statements.
 

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Then it'll be several months after that before we find out how they are going to rule, although you'll be able to make an educated guess from the types of questions the justices ask. The wheels of justice grind slowly.

SCOTUS supposedly has arguments available in an audio format for those who are interested in following them. I'll have to look them up once this case gets argued. Might be interesting to hear it for ourselves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
There are usually transcripts available too. I wait for other people to post cliffs notes :)
 

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I usually do too, but for this case it might be interesting to hear it with our own ears. You can pick a lot of inflection and attitude up from from audio that you miss with transcripts.

This is exciting stuff. We are a few months away from SCOTUS ruling on a fundamental civil liberty and in all likelihood expanding upon it. That doesn't happen every day.
 
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