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May 10, 2002
US v. Miller and Anti-Gun Newspapers

I am simply amazed by the number of papers holding up US v. Miller as supporting a states rights models. Others here, here, here, and here.

US v. Miller is a case against two mobsters transporting a sawed off shotgun. The case was dismissed at the district level as the court ruled that the National Firearms Act of 1934 was unconstitutional. The US appealed the case to the Supreme Court. Neither the Mobsters (Miller and Layton), nor their counsel showed up. The Supreme Court held that the mobsters were members of the Militia as the Militia is defined in Federal Code as all able bodied male citizens or prospective citizens aged 18 to 35. They then held that in absence of any evidence that a sawed off shotgun was a weapon involved in military use - since there was no evidence presented by any defense - it was thus not covered by the 2nd amendment. The obvious inference is that any weapon that is related to the military is covered by the 2nd amendment. The court did not say much more as the case was remanded to the district court for trial. Miller died before the new trial and Layton plead for 5 years probation.

If you don't believe this reading, feel free to read the case and the background documents yourself. It is clear that the editorialists above have not.

Update: I'm not the only person who has noticed similarities in the OpEds.

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