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Tribal Influence

What, that’s what I said not what I meant.

Respected liberal constitutional scholar and Obama supporter Laurence Tribe stated there was individual right to arms guaranteed by the constitution and noted he may have sway with the liberal justices in the Heller case. Now, he’s written a bit in the WSJ asserting basically that:

1) There is an individual right (I agree)

2) That right is not absolute (I also agree as no right is absolute)

3) Banning handguns is OK. (huh? Did I miss something?)

I’m clearly missing something here. He seems to be asserting the “densely populated area” exception to the second amendment. And he treats the case as though it only addresses the handgun ban, which is intellectually dishonest.

Anyway, my thoughts are that he realized facts got in the way of his opinion. And he aligned his position with Obama’s.

The Heller lawyers are understandably dismayed.

Kopel: Professor Tribe has the right to change his mind, but the air of forceful certainty with which he today argues for reversal seems inconsistent with his unrequited offer from ten months ago to play a “more central role” in securing affirmance.

Hardy: I think his position is somewhere between unclear and inchoherent

Sebastian: Drugs are a scourge of the inner cities as well. Would Professor Tribe support standard of review for the fourth amendment which would allow house to house searches for drugs in urban areas, while leaving the fourth amendment well enough in tact in rural areas?

Update: Jacob Sullum: Tribe ignores another aspect of D.C.’s gun law, the provision requiring that even long guns be kept “unloaded and disassembled or bound by a trigger lock.” That requirement makes it pretty hard to use any gun for self-defense, except maybe as a club.

7 Responses to “Tribal Influence”

  1. Rustmeister Says:

    Classic example of non sequitur – “It does not follow”

  2. Ron W Says:

    Update: Jacob Sullum: Tribe ignores another aspect of D.C.’s gun law, the provision requiring that even long guns be kept “unloaded and disassembled or bound by a trigger lock.” That requirement makes it pretty hard to use any gun for self-defense, except maybe as a club.

    Now are government agents and officials bound by that law? Article VI, Section 3 of the Constitutiton says they are “bound by the law”. Oh that’s right, they don’t go by the law anymore…we’re living under arbitrary government———–> tyranny.

  3. chris Says:

    It’s kind of funny that not all densely populated areas have a problem with gun crime.

    I somehow don’t get the impression that Salt Lake City and Bismark don’t have the same violent crime problem as Detroit, St. Louis, Miami, Cleveland, Houston, D.C., etc.

    Now why could that be?

  4. straightarrrow Says:

    All rights are absolute. Period.

    My rights do not allow me to infringe your rights. Until that point your opinion that my rights might be misused to abuse your rights and therefore you may truncate mine, is simply stupidity.

    Were I the ambitious truncater of your rights because you might abuse them to violate mine is just as stupid.

    All rights are absolute or they are not rights, only permissions at the sufferance of your masters.

  5. SayUncle Says:

    All rights are absolute. Period.

    Incorrect. If you yell fire in a crowded theater, you’re exercising your absolute right to speech in a manner harmful to others. And you deserve your ass kicked.

  6. Xrlq Says:

    SA: no rights are absolute, so if your theory is correct that all rights are absolute, the only logical conclusion is that rights do not exist. In which case, there’s little point in discussing them, eh?

  7. CT1Catfish Says:

    But I could yell FIRE in a crowded theatre if there was a fire, or if it was part of a planned and accepted action.