Brady Campaign Implores Supreme Court to Keep the 2A a Second Class Right

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Ever since the Supreme Court slapped down the City of New York’s attempt to smother the pending case against brought against it by the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, the amicus briefs have been coming in hot and heavy. You can see them all here.

While most of the briefs have been filed by those supporting the petitioners (i.e., for striking down the plainly unconstitutional New York City law) it’s always interesting to read the arguments of those who are desperately trying to head off an earthquake-like ruling that could invalidate hundreds of gun control laws across the country by finally applying strict scrutiny to the Second Amendment.

Here’s an excerpt from the Brady Campaign’s amicus brief which was filed Tuesday . . .

If the constitutional issues must be addressed, the Court’s decision should be limited to the issue directly at hand. The Court should reject petitioners’ effort to use this dispute, which involves a unique municipal transportation ordinance, into a vehicle to transform Second Amendment doctrine in a way that will imperil numerous public safety laws, as well as Americans’ ability and power to protect their communities.

If the Court entertains a broader discussion of Second Amendment rights, it should follow its traditional path of construing rights to avoid excessive costs to public safety. A right to lethal firearms in public merits even greater restraint. Petitioners wrongly suggest that every regulation of a fundamental constitutional right requires strict scrutiny, but this Court has never adopted such a mechanical approach.

What the Framers meant by “keep and bear arms” in 1791 may be debatable, but today’s reality is not. More than 1,000,000 people have been shot in America over the past decade, of whom more than 300,000 were killed. The causes of gun violence are complex, but a considerable body of knowledge, including both expert research and common sense, suggests that one significant cause is firearms in the public sphere. Americans are increasingly demanding legislative and policy solutions to this crisis, many of which are now being enacted or considered in local governments, the States, and Congress.

This reality is unmentioned by petitioners, as is the fact that courts and legislatures have long recognized government’s broad authority to restrict gun carrying in public spaces. A holding of this Court—or even dicta— that the Second Amendment broadly grants a right to carry loaded firearms in public spaces or requires searching scrutiny could transform the Second Amendment into a super-right that abridges Americans’ ability to exercise other fundamental rights, as well as their right to enact reasonable solutions to the problem of gun violence. The Court should preserve the rights of Americans to enact effective gun violence prevention measures to prevent bloodshed before it happens.

– Brady Campaign amicus brief in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v City of New York

comments

  1. avatar Freebird says:

    I must ask , why hasn’t the NRA , 2 A F or even GOA ever CHALLENGED the 800 lb. gorillia in the room ?

    ” The court ruled in United States v. D.J. Vollmer & Co. that “the B.A.T.F. has jurisdiction over the first sale of a firearm imported to the country, but they don’t have jurisdiction over subsequent sales.”

    Stop infringement at the source.

    1. avatar SAFEupstateFML says:

      Only recently shifted court composition away from FDR levels of liberalism, still working on getting 2nd amendment to catch up to only being ignored as much as the 4th, takes time and money, oh and only recently having it become an option.

    2. avatar Thomas says:

      Their arguments are so flawed, capricious and arbitrary, filled with so many of todays favored propaganda phrases (common sense or effective gun violence prevention), that it is quite easy to pick apart each sentence.

      However, let’s just boil down their real intent, their “Endgame” for you Avengers fans;

      “…as well as their right to enact reasonable solutions to the problem of gun violence…”

      Oh, reasonable solutions? Ok, what are those?

      Replies John Paul Steven (speaking with the brevity of a 99 year old), “Repeal The Second Amendment”.

      Ah, thought so…

    3. avatar Anymouse says:

      They haven’t challenged because the ruling doesn’t mean what you think it means. Your quote isn’t in the decision. Whoever told you this should be ignored or mocked.

      1. avatar Freebird says:

        Nothing to see here ….. move along.
        Right ?

        Care to enlighten us all with your legal expertise ?

      2. avatar that one guy says:

        Retired Justice Stevens literally wrote those exact words, just over a year ago:

        https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/27/opinion/john-paul-stevens-repeal-second-amendment.html

  2. avatar Marcus says:

    And how will any of those lives be saved by banning guns from coming in or out of city limits?

    1. avatar Baldwin says:

      Stop expecting laws to actually produce beneficial results.

  3. avatar Shire-man says:

    I’m generally pretty pessimistic when it comes to anyone respecting my rights but I must say the deranged fear being exhibited by the anti’s here leaves me feeling pretty positive.

    1. avatar Phil Wilson says:

      That was my thought too. However, my optimism remains cautious. Roberts believes the Supreme Court should have a light hand, and Kavanaugh places considerable weight on legal precedent. A narrow ruling is still quite possible.

    2. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      “…I must say the deranged fear being exhibited by the anti’s here leaves me feeling pretty positive.”

      We’re feeling positive because the Court currently appears to be biased in our favor.

      It isn’t always gonna be that way. It’s fun to point and laugh at their hysterics right now, but pay attention to their arguments in that brief. When the Court eventually swings in their favor, these are the arguments they will use to destroy the 2A.

      And never forget that is their eventual goal…

      1. avatar SAFEupstateFML says:

        Exactly right, go for everything you can get now be it lawfare or purchases because tomorrow will be new battles of old motivations

      2. avatar J says:

        “When the court swings in their favor”

        So 30-60 years from now (assuming trump gets to appoint another couple to the bench)?

        If our side isnt galvanized, unified and entrenched by then, theres no hope.

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      NYC has had it’s way with gun laws for a long time…anything that can be construed as “chipping-away” will probably elicit a mild case of panic….

  4. avatar Ollie says:

    Getting rid of guns would increase the violence, not stop it. Strong thugs and mobs would rampage through the big cities (and everywhere, for that matter) on a massive scale. There would be total chaos within months of confiscating all the firearms. Most criminals would retain their firearms and, when mass violence occurred, police would, as usual, be the first to flee.

    Liberal naivete is the most dangerous force in the universe.

    1. avatar TrueBornSonofLiberty says:

      They aren’t naïve. They are terrorists.

    2. avatar Desert Ranger Tycho says:

      Make no mistake, this is intentional. Only when the public is disarmed and crime is rampant can the authoritarians make their case for increasing the power of the state and enslaving us.

      1. avatar burley says:

        It’s an old song, sung by Ol’ Scratch himself. Only things that change are the instrumentation and the appearance of the leaders. The motivations and mindsets are still corrupted by dreams of power.

    3. That is when we would see people making their own firearms again. Remember “zip guns'” made from car antennas, or sites like ” The Home Gunsmith”, which gives details on making your own. There are too many people who have the abilities, if not the equipment , to make their own.

      If all the guns were removed, organized crime would be the next ones to make a profit from the situation. All the efforts to keep illegal drugs from coming into this country has been successful, hasn’t it ? So, naturally, any effort to keep the now declared “illegal” guns from being smuggled in will meet the same level of success.

  5. avatar TrueBornSonofLiberty says:

    Those that seek to usurp, ignore or erase our Constitutional rights are unequivocally, domestic terrorists.

  6. avatar Scott says:

    “The Court should preserve the rights of Americans to enact effective gun violence prevention measures to prevent bloodshed before it happens”.

    I don’t recall that “right” in the Constitution or Bill of Rights.

    1. avatar Manse Jolly says:

      “…requires searching scrutiny could transform the Second Amendment into a super-right ..”

      A super-right?

      smh…

      1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

        “A super-right?”

        An impossible dream?

  7. avatar million says:

    And that’s all the justification John “penaltax” Roberts needed to vote with the statist wing and relegate the 2A to a second-class privilege.

    1. avatar tdiinva says:

      The decision will go against NYC. The decision doesn’t even have to refer to the Second Amendment. NYC is attempting to apply it’s laws outside of its jurisdiction. I wouldn’t be surprised if the decision went 6-3 to overturn the law

      1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

        “I wouldn’t be surprised if the decision went 6-3 to overturn the law”

        Doubtful. Were it a ‘narrow’ ruling, I’d say yes. This one’s gonna be wide. Kagan and Sotomayor know the implications.

        5-4 in our favor, on strict ideological lines…

        1. avatar tdiinva says:

          I can see Roberts crafting majority opinion that relies on the interstate commerce clause as much as the Second Amendment to overturn law. There is no way that a NY resident can lawfully have a handgun on property he owns in another State where it would be legal for him to in own one since you can only take possesion of a handgun in your state of your residence. Under the current law a NYC resident could be prosecuted if it was discovered that he had a handgun in his cabin in Vermont because the only way he could have gotten it there was by transporting out of NYC contrary to the statute.

          But I would guess that fit your definition. Of a narrow decision.

        2. avatar Tom S. says:

          Even other states have joined the case based on the fact the NYC law interferes with interstate commerce. It prevents NY gun owners from patronizing gun ranges in neighboring states, it prevents NYC hunters from taking their guns to other states to hunt, deriving citizens in those states of income from NYC residents.
          The current law prevents New Yorkers from taking a legally possessed item (their gun) from a place where they own it, to another place where they legally can possess it in another state.
          Not even a second amendment case and it is in violation of the Constitution.

        3. avatar neiowa says:

          “crafting” is one of the biggest poles of steaming BS in gov’t. Leave it for the progs.

      2. avatar Mark N. says:

        If it were as simple as ruling that the ordinance conflicts with FOPA (which it does) and is therefore invalid, I wonder if the court would have taken the case. I instead think that the Court will issue a decision that addresses the standard of review, given that the liberal circuits have reduced “intermediate scrutiny” to no more than a rational basis review that always supports government infringement. If you want to read a relatively short and beautifully written amicus that castigates these courts for their lack of deference to Heller, read Alan Gura’s brief on behalf of Commonwealth Second Amendment, Inc. It is a real treat.

  8. avatar Some dude says:

    Interesting that the Brady Center recognizes the 2nd Amendment as bestowing a “fundamental constitutional right”, but doesn’t think any regulation of that right should be subject to strict scrutiny.

    As per usual, they can’t even be honest regarding the 200,000 of those 300,000 “killings” in the past decade that were non-violent personal choice… not to mention the other caveats attendent to the remainder, justifiable, gang related, leaving only a relative few other homicides and accidents that any sane American would bemoan, and those already on a two decade plus decline.

    Gun control is nothing if not disingenuous…

    1. avatar John in AK says:

      I can agree with pretty much everything that you say, except for ‘non-violent personal choice’ when it comes to suicide by gunshot.

      Ever seen one? Ever seen one where there’s a head wound? Ever seen one done with a big-bore pistol, or any center-fire rifle, or a shotgun? Ever heard of the ‘candy-dish effect,’ or the ‘headless stump motif’? Ever seen ‘Yeah, he had blue eyes. . . one ‘blue’ this way, and the other ‘blue’ that way.’?

      You don’t call something like that ‘non-violent.’

      1. avatar JR Pollock says:

        You’re confusing “violence” with “trauma”..

      2. avatar pwrserge says:

        Sure I can. Offing yourself is no more “violence” than cutting yourself is a stabbing.

      3. avatar frank speak says:

        actually, I can recall one on tv…[PA legislator in front of a room full of reporters]…it really wasn’t all that spectacular….

  9. avatar A Deplorable says:

    The counter balance is the many, many successful defensive gun uses by ordinary Americans each year, but the Brady Bunch deliberately omits THOSE figures from its argument. Although the exact figure for DGU’s is uncertain, even “conservative” estimates strongly indicate more lives are saved and more criminal acts prevented bu DGU’s than the BB’s figure for deaths by firearms-involved violence, suicide and accident.

    1. avatar Jim Bullock says:

      Not omitted. If the DGU required firing with effect, if counts in the Brady bunch number.

      They are, in the end, bugged by people able to do anything, including not get killed, with their own ability, on their own authority.

  10. avatar GS650G says:

    Just apply that logic to their precious first amendment rights and watch them go nuts.

    1. avatar Phil Wilson says:

      Leftists don’t respect the 1st amendment either.

      1. avatar Ing says:

        They still have to pretend they do, at least. It’s a good way to get them to splutter and backpedal and start contradicting themselves.

  11. avatar 2aguy says:

    I love how they use the anti-gun tactic of lumping suicide with gun murder…..the only way they get to 300,000 deaths by gun……then, when you tell them that Japan, that has absolute gun control has a higher suicide rate than we do, by jumping in front of trains and off of buildings, they have no leg to stand on. That they employ the usual lies and bait and switch tactics to even the Supreme Court, shows you how vile they are.

    1. avatar barnbwt says:

      They also have more than a few ‘disappearances,’ suspicious suicides, live old people on the books who were long since mummified in their apartments, demographic “colony collapse syndrome,” a decades-stagnant economy paralyzed with debt, and a jury-less justice system with a ludicrously high conviction rate. I don’t know why any American would want to emulate much of anything in their system.

      ETA – it does appear they adopted some form of jury system several years ago, so maybe it’s getting better

  12. avatar jay y says:

    “The causes of gun violence are complex…. suggests that one significant cause is firearms in the public sphere.” When has a firearm caused violence? Do vehicles or alcohol cause drunk driving?
    Given that 80% of all violent crime is committed by gang members here is what the Brady campaign wants to see: 1990 – Rwanda established gun control. In a span of 100 days starting in April 1994, 800,000 people who were unable to defend themselves were massacred – most by machetes.

    1. avatar barnbwt says:

      No kidding; if guns cause gun violence, then the causes of gun violence are anything but ‘complicated.’ They make an asinine argument so flimsy, it contradicts itself in the same sentence. These fools are like Dr. Seuss, or something. “I cannot kill you without a gat, I cannot kill you with a cat, I cannot kill you with a bat (oh, wait…)”

  13. avatar former water walker says:

    Blah blah blah…if “we” were as dangerous as the Brady Bunch sez there wouldn’t be a live leftard. As a group lawful gun owner’s are best folks in America!

    1. avatar possum, destroyer of arachnids says:

      +1

      1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

        It’s the marsupials developing fusion weapons in their dens I’m worried about…

        1. avatar possum, destroyer of arachnids says:

          It’s all fun and games until some body lights the fuse

  14. avatar barnbwt says:

    “What the Framers meant by “keep and bear arms” in 1791 may be debatable, but today’s reality is not.”

    How these are not considered “fightin’ words” to any constitutional lawyer or jurist, is beyond me. I think Brady may have actually hurt their chances with this stupidity;

    “Yes, we basically concede, even in our amicus brief, that this NYC law is completely outrageous and unconstitutional, but we still support it nonetheless, so please continue listening to our opinion about anything.” Very compelling, lol.

    “Yes, your job is to do X (enforce the legal meaning of our nation’s guiding documents with as little personal bias or political leaning as possible) but we think you should do Y, because that’s what we want.” I’m sure it takes Thomas a good deal of restraint to refrain from giving a ‘fuck off’ to these guys.

    That quote I read from Coolidge the other day where he says his job consists of meeting with visitors asking for what they ought not have, comes to mind.

  15. avatar 2aguy says:

    Justice Scalia, the author of the opinion in Heller, already stated in his dissent in the follow up, Friedman v Highland Park ( His dissent was simply that this case needed to be heard and ruled on…) where he states that AR-15 rifles, by name, are protected rifles under the 2nd Amendment. He repeats that all weapons in common use for lawful purposes are protected…so the lower courts and their “assault” rifle bans, need to be struck down, hard, and taught a lesson about the Supreme Court being the top court….

    1. avatar TexTed says:

      Er… perhaps you are misinformed as to how the court works? An individual justice’s opinion, in a DISSENT no less, is not exactly the supreme law of the land.

      You might want to wait for a majority opinion before trying to smack down laws with it.

      1. avatar UpInArms says:

        True, a dissent is not the law of the land. However, it does provide grist for the mill if the current court decides to do an about face. It helps make the argument when someone else has made it before. Dissenting opinions are not totally without value.

  16. avatar possum, destroyer of arachnids says:

    I’m seeing having s gunm infringes on the rights of other people. I ask, tell what those rights the 2A infringes on?

    1. avatar TexTed says:

      The right to “feel safe”.

      Seriously. That’s what they say.

      1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

        I damn sure don’t ‘feel safe’ when Leftists have the “levers of power”…

      2. avatar possum, destroyer of arachnids says:

        Myself seems pretty safe when I’m packing heat. I’ve got a long winded story on that. The jist of it was I got rolled on the other night however just exposing the gunm did the trick. I’m pretty sure they’d have took my cookies

        1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          “The jist of it was I got rolled on the other night however just exposing the gunm did the trick.”

          Another successful DGU, that they say “never happens”… 🙂

        2. avatar Cookie M. says:

          Cookies?

          You have cookies?

          Possum did you bring enough for everyone?

      3. avatar frank speak says:

        of course I “feel safe”….when I have a gun….

  17. avatar bob says:

    That reads like textbook script.

    I make my plea to you the oh powerful King, It is obvious you should have all mighty rule over firearms, not these peasants who protest, they are incapable of handling such power, but not you. We must fight together to save all of humanity from this scourge upon our kingdom!
    Surely there must be a way your Lordship can seize the reins and put an end to the wicked behavior of such low creatures unfit to handle such powerful weapons of mass destruction.

    You read that Brady crap with this in your head and you’ll see, they’re pleading to a higher power to help them win. The courts can see its only commons sense that in order to back the safety of the common people they must outlaw everything.

    A land of laws breeds outlaws.

    1. avatar Jim Bullock says:

      That’s astute. I didn’t catch the “higher power” appeal to royal prerogative, but you’re right. It’s there.

      I did notice that that Brady bunch “legal brief” is way more a policy argument* than legal analysis. Precidents? Laws? Rulings? Standards of analysis n thresholds of decisions? of evidence n evidence in evidence? An appeal rests on the record of the judgment being appealed — maybe refer to that?

      There’s another line of argument, here: “Judges don’t make policy or laws. You wanna do something outside the law as is, change the law.” So, policy arguments are on the face invalid.

      The “liberal wing” of the supremes doesn’t recognize that process / policy distinction. They want what they want. It’s the same reason the “do something” people so object to the net Federalist Society position: “You want it; pass a law.”

      Proconsul Cuomo-the-Younger, of course, doesn’t recognize any authoritah above his convenience or whim. (Much like DiBoBo, which is 1/4 of why they hate each other so.**)

      The wild card in the ruling is how much the Supremes are horked off at lower courts disregarding *their* authoritah.

      * Bad argument, for bad policy, badly made, in badly chosen venue. One wonders if what amounts to a press release they have to know is off-point is simply to have fodder for donor funding appeals, n to provision some news cycles. They are certainly that cynical. Are they that clever?

      ** 1 Competing unilateral authoritah grabs, 2 appealing to same base, 3 insufficient syncophancy, and 4 dueling patronage networks. They are also both grasping, disengenuous, n unlikeable, but everybody dislikes them both for that.

  18. avatar Don from CT says:

    Its like they are acknowledging that the NY law is illegal.

  19. avatar LKB says:

    Yeah, the amicus briefs being filed by the anti’s are begging the Supreme Court to keep it narrow and just nuke the NYC law. Nobody seems to be seriously defending that law or expecting it to survive.

    The levels of desperation (and disingenuousness) in some of the amicus briefs I’ve read is palpable, and are at a level I rarely see in Supreme Court amicus briefs . For example, one amicus brief by three anti-2A law professors actually argues that lower courts aren’t in fact treating the Second Amendment differently than other fundamental rights. Hello? Those courts have gone out of their way to say the they ARE treating the 2A differently, because guns.

    We can’t count our chickens yet, and like many of you I worry that CJ Roberts may go wobbly on us. Nevertheless, I’m feeling pretty good that this one is going to come out as “we said the Second Amendment is a fundamental, individual right and we mean it — strict scrutiny applies.”

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      Hell, even NYC knows that the law is toast. The game now is to minimize the “harm” that will follow from the Court’s opinion striking it down, because it is almost inevitable that the Second Circuit is going to be taken by the short hairs and dragged over the coals for the manner in which it somehow concluded that the ordinance was not violative of the Second Amendment or the Commerce Clause. The standard of review that the Court will impose is the heart of the case, and everyone who is anyone knows it–and they are scared.

    2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      LKB,

      Various civilian disarmament entities are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to issue a “narrow” opinion. Seems to me that striking down the New York City law and simply stating that all courts must use strict scrutiny when evaluating Second Amendment cases is pretty narrow.

      If strict scrutiny is the standard of review, will that open the door for cases to strike down most existing laws that infringe on our right to keep and bear arms? Sure. And those cases will have to make their way through the courts, each with its own narrow decision.

  20. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

    In the immortal words of Charlie Daniels, “Their heads are on fire and their asses are catching!” In my words, they’re scared shitless.

  21. avatar strych9 says:

    “If the constitutional issues must be addressed…”

    The use of the word “if” in this statement tells you all you need to know about the folks who wrote it.

    1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      Words mean to Leftists whatever they want them to mean at the time…

  22. avatar Guest says:

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  23. avatar Brewski says:

    Step 1: Build the wall
    Step 2: Line up all anti-constitutional politicians
    Step 3: Refresh the Tree of Liberty
    Step 4: Profit

  24. avatar Tt78 says:

    Am I misreading their brief or do the Brady fascists actually say that numerous gun control laws across the country violate the citizenry’s constitutional rights – but that this isn’t the proper case to make such a ruling?

  25. avatar OBOB says:

    LOL
    MOST!!!!! of that 300,000 dead was gangs, cops and lawful citizens taking out the trash of crooks gangbangers and robbers
    I call it a good thing!

  26. avatar Jeff says:

    Like cockroaches scrambling for cover when someone turns on the lights, the liberal elitists are scrambling to head off the consequences of their anti-Constitutional activities under the scrutiny of the Supreme Court. Thank you President Trump!

  27. avatar neiowa says:

    Interesting that the Soros ilk 5th column trolls have not bothered with this story

  28. avatar Demoncrats says:

    Hey Brady Campaign! How many 100s of million defenseless babies have been murdered? Why isn’t your organization against abortion since you are so worried about saving lives?

  29. avatar John Peacock says:

    Do any of you people, actually understand that the
    Bill of rights tells the government exactly what they
    may “NOT” do ! Things such as make laws that out law
    our right to keep and firearms , “Shall not be infringed” !

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