A six-year study of Supreme Court cases has found scores of “forgotten decisions” affecting the “highly contested” constitutional right to keep and bear arms.
Titled “Supreme Court Gun Cases,” the study examines 92 cases – 44 of them unedited – and concludes without a doubt “the Supreme Court has recognized an individual right to arms for most of the past two centuries.”
The study, available for order next month, is “the most important set of words written about your constitutional guarantees,” said Alan Korwin, a firearms and legal researcher and co-author of the report.
Korwin, along with co-authors David B. Kopel and Dr. Stephen P. Halbrook, show the nation’s highest court “has not been quiet on this subject as previously thought.”
Kopel and Halbrook are attorneys.
The authors say justices use some form of the word gun 2,910 times in the nearly 100 cases involving gun rights.
“Three dozen of the cases quote or mention the Second Amendment directly,” says a statement by Bloomfield Press, publisher of the study.
The authors also show how the Supreme Court has recognized and supported armed self defense “with personally owned firearms” and that “an ancient ‘duty to retreat'” from a threat “is not obligatory.”
Also, the study shows “the oft-cited Miller case from 1939 is inconclusive, which is why gun-rights and gun-control advocates both claim it supports their position.”
Gun control advocates say the Miller case showed the Second Amendment’s “right to keep and bear arms” is granted only to states so they can arm their militias, not private citizens. The high court essentially upheld the government’s authority to prosecute a person for possession of a sawed-off shotgun. However, opponents of gun control say the ruling reinforced the individual’s right to keep and bear arms but only those weapons commonly used in militias.
Either way, “the record shows the [high] court actually remanded this case back to the lower court for retrial and a hearing on the evidence, since there was no evidence presented,” Bloomfield Press said. “Because Miller had been murdered by that time and his co-defendant had taken a plea agreement, no retrial or evidentiary hearing was ever held.”
In the study, more than 1,000 “interesting” quotations are highlighted, the authors said. Each case includes “a plain-English description” and a special “‘descriptive index’ reduces each case to the firearms-related questions(s) it answers.”
Justices “have not been quiet on the subject, and they have not disparaged individual rights – the days of saying that are now over,” said Bloomberg. “The high court could change its mind, of course, but only by rejecting a record built up for hundreds of years.”
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