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May 24, 2009
A Memorial Day Weekend Update

For those who know the social history, Memorial Day is considered the Union holiday. To me that makes it a perfect time to talk about the lasting impact of the Fourteenth Amendment.

As I posted recently, Nordyke v King found that the Second Amendment applied to the states on April 20, 2009. 10 days later the Calguns Foundation and its coalition filed a lawsuit entitled Pena et al v. Cid alleging that the Roster of Handguns Certified For Sale in California was unconstitutional (a companion case to Hanson v. District of Columbia). 6 days after that, the same coalition filed a lawsuit entitled Sykes et. al. v. McGinness et. al. alleging that the discretionary issuance of licenses to carry operable firearms was unconstitutional as well. Then on May 15, an NRA lead coalition filed Jackson et al. v. San Francisco which challenges San Francisco's "safe storage" requirements and the City's ban on the sale of hollow point ammunition.

On May 18th in a surprising and rare turn of events, an anonymous judge of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals called for briefing on and a vote on whether Nordyke should go en banc. The Nordykes are pulling their briefing together. Clearly the court's treatment of "sensitive places" was incorrect. Odds are only mildly against the case actually going en banc based on the head count of announced opinions of the current makeup of the court. However, there is a slight increased chance of en banc due to the poor reasoning on the merits of the gun show ban, and not on the incorporation analysis. Suffice it to say that it leaves the pending cases in an interesting tactical position. To add excitement, Alan Gura and Stephen Halbrook are arguing incorporation in McDonald v. Chicago and NRA v. Chicago in their consolidated cases on the day after Memorial Day.

However, I look forward to being able to tell the veterans I interact with that, yes, they can actually own the semiautomatic version of the firearm the government otherwise issues them and that we in California have the Fourteenth Amendment to thank for that. It's a relatively modern "innovation" that a veteran can't put his rifle in his own closet...

I thank all of them for their service and hope that I can also do a small part to defend what they fight for.

Posted by hoffmang | May 24, 2009 11:03 AM


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