Sunday, July 4, 2010

Libertarians pleased by ruling on gun rights

Following the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gun control in the McDonald v. Chicago case, Libertarian National Committee Chairman Mark Hinkle issued the following statement June 30:

"We are very pleased that the Supreme Court has ruled that the Second Amendment protects individuals from state governments wishing to violate their right to own handguns.

"Libertarians have always firmly supported the individual right of self-defense.

"Now there is some hope that Chicago's horrible violent crime problem can be reduced by law-abiding citizens who will now be able to deter and resist criminals. More guns = less crime.

"It is disturbing that four justices voted to uphold Chicago's gun ban. Their position is an attempt to pursue a policy goal from the bench, not to apply the Constitution -- and to make matters worse, it is a policy goal that would be very harmful to the people of Chicago, and potentially to everyone in America.

"This ruling follows the District of Columbia v. Heller ruling, which overturned D.C.'s ban on handguns. That case was originally brought by Dick Heller, Libertarian Party member and treasurer of the D.C. Libertarian Party.

"We hope that this ruling will lead to further court decisions that reduce the government's ability to infringe on gun rights with burdensome restrictions and red tape.

"Republicans and Democrats both deserve blame for violating gun rights. While Republicans often position themselves as Second Amendment defenders, it is worth noting major examples to the contrary:

"Republican 2008 presidential nominee John McCain received an F- rating from Gun Owners of America;

"Republican president George W. Bush supported a program called Project Safe Neighborhoods that sought to toughen and federalize prosecution of gun control laws;

"When he was running for Massachusetts Governor in 2002, Republican Mitt Romney said, 'We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts; I support them; I won't chip away at them; I believe they protect us and provide for our safety.';

"In 1991, former Republican President Ronald Reagan announced his support for the Brady federal gun control bill."

The Libertarian candidate for New York Governor, Warren Redlich, has commented that the ruling will affect New York gun control laws. On June 28 Redlich wrote, "This landmark ruling will require New York State to take immediate action to amend its gun laws so they do not violate the constitution. It is a striking victory for gun owners and for anyone who believes in the fundamental rights the constitution provides."

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