Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens must be a bit bored these days. So bored, in fact, that he decided to write a diatribe on Second Amendment jurisprudence for the Washing Post.
As a result of the rulings in Heller and McDonald, the Second Amendment, which was adopted to protect the states from federal interference with their power to ensure that their militias were “well regulated,” has given federal judges the ultimate power to determine the validity of state regulations of both civilian and militia-related uses of arms. That anomalous result can be avoided by adding five words to the text of the Second Amendment to make it unambiguously conform to the original intent of its draftsmen. As so amended, it would read:
“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms when serving in the Militia shall not be infringed.”
It’s interesting stuff regardless of your stance on gun control, and a good summary of the Court’s opinions regarding the right to bear arms. I can’t help but note the irony in a former Supreme Court Justice proposing a constitutional amendment. Aren’t they supposed to (or at least pretend to) be completely removed from that process? I don’t know, I thought it said that in some document or something…